Pancake trial #3

My lovely American friend invited me over for brunch which entailed bacon, home-made hash browns and very fluffy thick pancakes, she happily gave me the recipe and I needed to try for myself if it was as easy as she said it was. The recipe is supposed to be easy to remember: 1 of everything, although you have to remember it is only one tablespoon of sweetener or your teeth will fall out. ūüėČ

Ingredients

  • 1 cup self raising flour
  • 1-3/4 cup milk (depends on how thick or thin you like your pancakes)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey
  • Butter for cooking

Equipment

  • Fry pan
  • Mixing bowl
  • Measuring cup for easy pouring of the batter
  • Spatula

Method

  1. Throw all the ingredients into a bowl and mix only until all the ingredients have just been incorporated. Apparently it doesn’t even matter if you don’t get all the flour pockets, just don’t over mix it
  2. Let it stand in the bowl for 10 minutes
  3. Grab a measuring cup for easy scooping, I chose my 1/3 cup for smallish pancakes
  4. Heat the pan on medium heat and throw a knob of butter to oil the pan
  5. Once the butter is bubbling, scoop a portion of your pancake batter in and it should spread nicely to create circles. I was able to fit two in a big fry pan, because I only added 3/4 cup of milk, it was thick and stayed put
  6. Flip the pancake once bubbles have formed (should only take a few minutes).
  7. Once flipped, it only needs around another minute to brown the other side.
  8. Remember to adjust heat based on your stove top so the pancakes do not burn

Tips

This mixture made only 5 fluffy pancakes, it is good portions for one or two people and ensures you’re not eating pancakes for the next week.

They reheat well after a 10-15 seconds in the microwave.

You can also add some berries (frozen or fresh), after you’ve poured the batter into the pan

Throw all the ingredients in a bowl, mix, rest for 10 minutes, scoop, cook, flip and eat, it is that easy.
TimmyC has his with maple syrup and ice cream, I prefer mine with Lyle’s Golden syrup.They’re so fluffy!!I think I have found a winner, these pancakes are thick and fluffy, the ingredients list is easy to remember and are basic staple to the kitchen pantry/fridge. I will just have to keep an eye on the cooking so they don’t look so brown around the edges. That is one out of five completed for my New Year’s resolution. It’s already August, eeep!

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A toast to toasting

Unless you have warm fresh bread, it is better to toast it, I mean¬†who doesn’t love a good jaffle or humble toast with melted butter. So why can’ t the same be said for other items?

I love a good kitchen hack which is simple but has maximum effect for very little effort. I have found toasting sesame seeds and flaked almonds not only smells great but the taste completely changes and intensifies.

Toasted flaked almonds or sesame seeds

Ingredients/equipment:

  • Stove top
  • Pan or wok
  • Sesame seeds or flaked almonds

Method:

  1. Place your ingredient in the cold pan and turn on the stove
  2. Constantly shake the pan once it starts to become hot to brown everything evenly
  3. Once the ingredient has turned into a golden brown colour, turn off the stove and remove pan from heat

Serving suggestion and tips:

I generally throw the sesame seeds into a stir fry or noodles and flaked almonds go beautifully on top of yoghurt. I store unused toasted items in a jar or air tight container.

 

The colour contrast between toasted and untoasted.

Do you have other items that you like to toast or other simple kitchen hacks that you would like to share?

New Year’s Resolutions

So by now, most people¬†who had made a fleeting fitness New Year’s resolution would have given up (if you haven’t good for you!).¬†I on the other hand, have made another type of resolution that I’m sharing with you all in hopes to keep me honest and get me through to fulfilling them¬†before the end of the year.

I want to cook several things this year, wait let me rephrase that, I want to cook several things really well this year. I may or may not have made them before and it might seem like simple humble items but they make a good basis for a classic cooking repertoire.

1) a bread like object

There are so many different types of bread, I’m not going to limit myself just to one. I’ve never worked with yeast before, but I love the smell of fresh bread (who doesn’t) and tasting warm bread with real butter is absolutely divine. If you have any recipes or tips that would be great!

2) a curry

I love a good chicken curry but if I can, I want to make a flavoursome tender red meat curry that basically falls apart as you put a spoon through it.

3) pancakes

it might seem weird but I’ve never made a successful pancake outside of the pre-mixed shaker containers. It has always been my dirty little secret as a foodie, but with Shrove Tuesday coming up, there is no time like present.

4) tarts

After my love of making cupcakes and my failure of making macarons (which TimmyC has definitely made up for), my next big love was going to be making tarts. I have made some but haven’t gotten around to getting to¬†the perfect recipe. I¬†think tarts¬†are gorgeous, delicious and very instagramable.

5) ice cream/sorbet

My lovely sister gave me the ice cream Kitchenaid attachment possibly two/three years ago now and I’ve never done anything with it. In my defense, that was roughly when I met Mr Frugii and my need for ice cream was taken care of. I should really throw that thing in the freezer so when the feeling arises I can make ice cream straight away without delay.

 
There are probably other things that I also want to make but these 5 resolutions are a good start. If you have any ‘fool proof’ recipes that you would like to share, that would be super handy. Have you made any resolutions this year?

 

PappaRich – rerun

After hearing about complaints that I went to PappaRich without certain people, off we went together to play the ‘line ride’ to eat Malaysian food after their official opening (see my previous visit before they officially opened here). Initially there was 5 of us for the waiting ticket but after some delays we just cut the number down to 3, ¬†we probably would have gotten in sooner if we initially only had the three of us but by the time we adjusted the number and got seated it ended up being a¬†40 minute wait. I didn’t find this too bad if you have ever waited for a table for yum cha in Sydney, but for those who aren’t used to it, they might consider the wait too long or the large crowd waiting around too daunting. The annoying thing is that you have to wait around for the ticket to be called, at least at Jamie’s Italian they give you a buzzer when a table becomes available so you can continue shopping until then.

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When we got inside, we were greeted with friendly faces and a bustling crowd of happy patrons.

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Drinks~

These drinks are perfect as a refreshing beverage on a hot Summer’s day.

Lemon Iced tea ($3.90).

Ribeana melon ($6.50).

a blurry photo of an Iced chocolate ($4.20).

and a Mango mania ($6.50).

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We were so excited about so many things, we just ordered what we wanted but the problem with that was the table couldn’t fit all our food despite conglomerating everything as it arrived and just when I thought everything complete, the noodles came and we had to pull up a chair to accommodate it.

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We ordered some things that I’ve already tried before like:

Hainan chicken rice set ($12.90).

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20131215-175459.jpgRoti canai with chicken curry ($12.50), 1 extra roti canai ($4.90).

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Then we ordered some new things:

Pappa deep fried chicken skin ($6.90). I wouldn’t eat this as a ‘main meal’ or anything but as a snack between mouthfuls of curry and roti, it made for an addictive salty snack. The unplucked feathers can be a bit off putting.

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Pappa Char Koay Teow wok-fried flat noodles with prawns, egg and bean sprouts. This dish is mildly spicy ($12.90). I was eager to order this because a Malaysian friend said that they used authentic noodles in their char koay teow here and I was keen to see what that meant. I was surprised to find that the noodles were thin almost like pad thai noodles, but overall I found that the dish a bit bland only consisting of egg and bean sprouts, some fish slices and only two prawns tossed to the side. I much prefer my noodles to have lots of shallots, soy sauce and fatty Chinese sausage.

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Even the fish pieces didn’t offer much in the way of taste.¬†20131215-175728.jpg

Satay mixed 3 sticks of chicken satay and 3 sticks of beef satay ($13.90). I am always wary of ordering anything other than chicken on a satay stick as I think the other meats get tough and over cooked and it was no different here. The beef satay sticks were hard to chew and were nowhere near as nice as the moist tender chicken. Stick to the chicken satay sticks! 20131215-175622.jpg

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Tandoori chicken ($8.90). I was surprised to find this on the menu but it was a moist chicken leg piece with all the spices served with a creamy yoghurt.

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Dessert~

Roti bom a variant of roti canai. It is thicker and sweeter and served with condensed milk and sugar ($7.90). I was determined to make space for the dessert roti that everyone kept talking about. It really is a thicker roti which made the centre more doughy. I didn’t think it was sweet enough or needed more condensed milk despite other people’s thoughts that it was sweet enough as is but I don’t think it is worth almost $8.00 for a bread with a bit of dip when for a few extra dollars you could get a whole meal with a roti canai. Sorry people, I really did want to love this.

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Despite saying I was full, it didn’t stop me from ‘tasting’ my friend’s meal as we were leaving the restaurant.

I’m used to having my silken tofu dessert with more of a gingery syrup but this had a very caramel/coffee taste to it. The texture was silky, smooth and perfect.

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Hainan toasted bread with peanut butter. This was one super thick paste of sticky peanut butter but overall nothing special.

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Even though I’ve been here twice and tried to order lots of things, there are still many menu items that I would like to try. If you don’t go overboard, a tasty meal can be rather cheap if you don’t mind a bit of a wait to get in.

Bernie’s from the bay

I don’t know if I’ll start riots in the streets of North Belconnen by adding Bernie’s from the bay onto Urbanspoon, for an establishment which has been there for years I expected it to be on the list or maybe I’ve just unknowingly spilt the beans on the best kept secret of Charnwood?

I remember hearing about this place years ago and my first reaction (although I’m sure it wasn’t uncommon) was ‘what?! Charnwood?’.¬†After several failed attempts and empty promises from local residents, I took myself to Bernie’s from the bay as I had a particularly ravenous craving for fish and chips that day (yes I’m looking at your Pete!).20131201-004053.jpg

There is a selection of fresh seafood (delivered straight from the bay Wednesday through to Friday) that you can request to be grilled/deep fried or buy as fresh seafood.20131201-004119.jpg

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Garlic prawn ($1.60) you could taste the garlic flavour and the batter coating wasn’t too thick.
Homemade prawn cutlet ($3.00 each) this was a really nice crumb on top but I thought it was a bit pricey at $3 a pop.
Chips ($4.00). Great and crunchy (I’m a big fan of the small crunchy pieces)! I saw a woman take away some chips with a bottle of tomato sauce and a loaf of bread in hand. Chip sandwiches!!! That would have been awesome!!!
Crumbed fish ($6.50). The crumb didn’t fall off, it stayed very crisp and the fish was tender and moist. All in all the perfect crumbed fish. ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†¬†Potato scallop ($1.50?) I don’t usually eat scallops outside of my burger (yes insert a potato scallop into your burger, it’s sooo good!) but I couldn’t put this one down. Golden brown, crunchy and not overly oily, how do they do it?!

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Grilled grenadier fish¬†($9.00) I asked for a suggestion of the best fish to grill and they chose this one, but I found it lacked seasoning (I do love pepper on my fish) and the meat wasn’t delicate but rather quite clumpy when I was trying to break it apart. A squeeze of lemon helped.

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Pineapple fritter Рdefinitely lacking in cinnamon sugar, as in: it had none what so ever, it would have been perfect otherwise.

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I’m going to put it out there and say it is the best fish and chip shop in Canberra!¬†For a completely deep-fried meal, I didn’t think it was very oily, everything was perfectly cooked to a golden brown colour and retained its heat for quite some time. I would love to come back and grab a burger (with a potato scallop inside of course!).

Venue: Bernies from the Bay takeaway seafood

Address: 33 Charnwood Pl, Charnwood Shopping centre

Phone: (02) 6258 4707

Opening hours: Wednesday – Sunday 11:00am – 8:30pm

Bernies from the bay on Urbanspoon

PappaRich – Malaysian Delights

Having walked past PappaRich last Saturday and literally being nosey by pressing my nose against the window, I didn’t think it had a chance to be opened by November 2013 with most of the area still under construction, but they must have worked overtime at then some because some how they managed to open on the 30th November (cutting it fine!).

Without knowing this, I walked past it today to see their progress and I was greeted with the same floor to ceiling sign saying that ‘Pappa Rich was coming in 2013’ which had taunted me for months but today there was something different. I noticed a door opened with 2 people standing at the front. I quickly ran ahead and poked my head in, hey it was finally opened(!) but secretly or something? I asked for a table for two for a late lunch and we were seated immediately.

With the Grand opening happening tomorrow, PappaRich was bustling with people trying to get a taste of Malaysian delights before the word got out.

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The ordering system is simple, just jot down your what you want, press the buzzer and a waiter will come within seconds to collect your order.

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You can see the big wooden exterior still up with lots of people secretly enjoying curries on the other side.20131201-202419.jpg

Teh iced milk tea ($3.90). Since I have left Asia I still get cravings for a good iced milk tea and this hit the spot… Mmmm refreshing.20131201-202533.jpg

Pappa chicken rice with steamed chicken¬†A Malaysian favourite that comes complete with tender boiled chicken, fragrant chicken rice, chicken soup, bean sprouts and a combination of chilli, ginger and dark soya sauce for dipping¬†($12.90). The chicken was moist and tender, the rice was really nice but the soup (which tastes like the soup that you would get in a Chinese short soup) was a bit on the saltier side.¬†I didn’t utilise the dipping sauces at all, I didn’t think it needed it.20131201-202557.jpg

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Roti Canai with curry chicken the ever popular roti canai with a serve of our delicious curry chicken ($12.50). I thought that the roti was fabulous being flaky, hot and crispy. The curry chicken was really nice too which had three biggish pieces of chicken.20131201-202544.jpg

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I think the food is very reasonably priced (for Canberra), the service was very prompt and you may or may not learn to tune out the door bell tone that sounds frequently throughout the restaurant whenever someone requires an attendant.

If you don’t know what to order, these two dishes are probably the signature dishes of Malaysian cuisine and is a good starting point. I can’t wait to come again and order a lot more from the menu (I’m looking at you deep fried chicken skin!), but it will probably also include these two dishes again.

At this stage they aren’t really taking bookings, it’s a first come first serve type of situation, but eating a late lunch at 2pm on a Sunday meant that there were no lines ūüôā

Venue: PappaRich

Address: Shop FG13B, Ground Floor, Bunda Street, Canberra Centre, Canberra City, 2601 ACT

Phone: (02) 6230 4929

Opening hours: 11am – 10pm 7 days, open until 11pm Fri – Sat

PappaRich on Urbanspoon