Wok Wednesdays. – Chinese Indian Vegetarian Fried Rice

This recipe comes from Stir-Frying To The Sky’s Edge by Grace Young page 265. It is  part of the Wok Wednesdays project which can be found on Facebook and www.wokwednesdays.com

Something close and very, very good to Chinese Indian Vegetarian Fried Rice

Something close  to Chinese Indian Vegetarian Fried Rice


Such a simple recipe with such simple ingredients .Or so you would think. Looking forward to making this recipe, and I was so sure I had everything I needed except the Basmati rice. Just a quick trip to the store that turned into a trip to three stores and no Basmati rice to be found in the Mid-levels in Hong Kong! Plan B was to use jasmine long grain rice, but I did not have any leftover as suggested for fried rice. Moving forward, decided to use the jasmine rice freshly cooked.

After the trip to multiple stores for rice, in pouring rain I might add, I set upon my mission to complete the the fried rice. After finding no ketchup in the refrigerator and no chili garlic sauce ( I thought I had those staples) the improvising continued. I would make this dish, or a reasonable incarnation of it or die trying! I used tomato paste diluted with a bit of sugar and worchestershire for the ketchup. Easy enough. I then opted to use some homemade Indonesian Sambal Bajak in place of the garlic chili sauce. I also used veggies on hand which consisted of red pepper, red onion and carrots.

I was so very pleased with the result, although I am sure it is nothing like what the original recipe intended. But we gobbled it up with pleasure. I served it with stir-fried lemon and salmon.

My one-time Minnesota neighbor and great friend, Ari, made me a supply of Sambal Bajak to bring to Hong Kong. She is a native of Indonesia and an excellent cook.  Although I have purchased sambal bajak at market, there is nothing like hers to be found. It is a delight and a staple in our house. A very complex mixture of flavors with an incredible heat! Not for anyone that does not like it “hot”. We use it on eggs, baked sweet potatoes, stir-fried cabbage, chicken with rice in lettuce wraps……… I could go on and on and on. Anyway, THANK YOU Ari for the sambal and THANK YOU  Grace for the inspiration. I will diligently look in local gourmet stores for some Basmati rice and attempt the recipe again with all the prescribed ingredients.

Update: Five stores later, I found the basmati rice!




Hong Kong-Style Ginger Mango Chicken

This recipe comes from Stir-Frying To The Sky’s Edge by Grace Young page 124 and is part of the Wok Wednesdays project that can be found on Facebook.

I was looking forward to making this dish. I love the savory and sweet combo. It is visually very pleasing as well. The ingredients are simple to prepare and the easy-to-find ingredients make is a cinch to prepare.

Easy to prepare and ready to wok-n-roll!

Easy to prepare and ready to wok-n-roll!

What stands out in this dish is the meat preparation. Velveting is described as an advanced technique, but the directions in the cookbook are very explicit and easy to follow. This was my second time employing the velveting technique, and it really produces moist, plump chicken pieces.

Ginger Mango Chicken in the process.

Ginger Mango Chicken in the process.

I liked this dish, but not as much as other recipes we have enjoyed from SFTTSE. However, I am a fan of velveting chicken. This dish would be good for people that do not like a lot of spice. It is a mild flavor.

The finished dish.

The finished dish.



Wok Wednesdays – Dry-Fried Sichuan Beans

This recipe comes from Stir-Frying To The Sky’s Edge by Grace Young page 233. It is  part of the Wok Wednesdays project which can be found on Facebook and www.wokwednesdays.com

Dry-Fried Sichuan Beans, note the steam!

Dry-Fried Sichuan Beans, note the steam!

We could not get enough of this dish. I thought the beans were a little old, but they cooked up wonderfully. I followed the instructions to cook beans for a minute or so to let the beans brown and blister a bit and then stir-fry for 30 seconds and repeat the process.. Total bean cooking time was about six minutes.  They were tender crisp and nice and hot. Note the steam rising off the beans.

Pat Chun Preserved Veget

Pat Chun Preserved Vegetable

I used preserved vegetables (not Sichuan preserved veggies as the recipe called for), because that is what I had on hand. Next time, I will add some Sichuan peppercorns to give it more spice, but this was nice for those that might not want a spicy dish. My husband tasted these preserved vegetables and started eating right out of the jar with his rice.

I have marked this as one of my top five recipes made so far from SFSE. Could eat it everyday!!

Did you feel the earth move a bit last week?


Mahjong Tiles

Mahjong Tiles

Last week in an international mahjong competition held in Toulouse France, the Chinese were given a “French Lesson” according to the South China Morning Post. French players won gold, silver and bronze prizes. Fourth, fifth and sixth place were taken by two Italians and a Dutch player. The closest Chinese player ranked seventh out of 108 players. Thirteen of them were Chinese. This is like an all-Chinese team from Beijing winning the World Series of Baseball.

I guess the Chinese did not see it coming. On Sina Weibo (Chinese version of Twitter), the news went viral. Most were in disbelief. There was even a comment that stated “we cannot let foreign devils beat us!” That comment surprised me. Although I could not beat many at mahjong, I guess I am a “foreign devil!”

Hundreds of years old, Mahjong is a game of tiles and is mostly a gambling game. To me, it reminds me a bit of rummy and dominos. It is addictive and after taking a class, I enjoy a game which can go on for hours.

Steve shared the news of the Chinese defeat at the office and they were in disbelief. Several people in the office are mahjong players, and one is reported to be very good. Excuses were made that the rules must be odd and allowances given. However the most interesting question/observation came when Steve was asked if he read this in “an expat newspaper.”

I’ll take the word of an “expat newspaper” any day while we are living here.

That is a whole other topic for a post.

The Dangers of Running in the Jungle

This fell from a tree this morning and hit me on the head while I was running to the top of The Peak. It knocked me silly and and knocked me down. Not sure what kind of fruit it is, but I heard it disconnect from the branch above and it fell some 30 feet. It cracked open on my hard head.