Category Archives: warm

Beef noodle soup 牛肉面

1 9

Since winter has come, days are shorter. It’s getting dark so early now. It always feels like 9 o’clock in the evening when I start preparing dinner. I have also started eating more spicy than in summer. I love spicy food, but after living in Europe I eat less spicy.

Friends from the Netherlands will laugh if they see I wrote “I eat less”, because they were once really crying by my table. For this depressed winter weather, eating spicy food will make you start sweating and it will feel like after doing exercise.

Beef noodle soup with soft meat, a rich broth and vegetables: it is warm, healthy and classic. It has always been popular in China, you can find it everywhere. Normally people eat it for breakfast. There are also noodles, porridge, soy milk, steamed buns or dumplings for breakfast in China.

Nowadays beef noodles is not only for breakfast, many noodle restaurants quite often are like Chinese fast food; fast to cook and also healthy. Some of those restaurants open 24 hours a day.

It is not difficult to make beef noodle soup, you only need a little bit of time and enough herbs.

5 11 12 13

What we need:

  • Beef chuck (for stews)                       500g
  • Star anise                                           2
  • Laurel herb (or bay leaf)                     2
  • Black cardamom                                  1
  • Cinnamon                                             1 stick
  • Sichuan pepper                                    1sp (you can replace it with white pepper)
  • Mandarin peel                                      2-3 pieces
  • Chilli sauce                                           1sp (I use sambal to replace Sichuan chilli sauce, it is not spicy but salty)
  • Dark soy sauce                                     1sp
  • Light soy sauce                                     2sp
  • Shaoxing wine or rice wine                   2sp
  • Monocrystal sugar                                6 pcs (if you don’t have any, you can use 1 spoon of ordinary granulated sugar)
  • Garlic                                                    4 cloves
  • Fresh ginger                                         4 slices
  • Spring onion                                          3
17 14

How to make it

Cut the beef into pieces of 4x4cm, the put all in a soup pan. Add all herbs and sauces, then add 80 or 90 cl water. Heat on high fire until is starts to boil, then turn to small fire and let it simmer for 2 hours.

Cook noodles and place them in a bowl, add meat and soup.

Garnish with half a boiled egg and some greens. Add some home made chili oil if you dare!

Stir fried sweet basil with shrimp

_MG_3803_MG_3876

Last july, we took a one-day cooking class when we were in Chaingmai, Thailand.
Our chef or tour guide looked like Mr Chow from the movie”The hangover” , more younger, but the same speed of talking and with lot of gestures.
We first went to a local morning market, where “Mr Chow” showed us many Thai spices and vegetables, he answered my qustions about these Thai food.
Then we drove in a minibus to a big house, which is located outside the city. It has a big garden with many herbs and fruit trees in it.
We spend half the day there, cooked 5 dishes: a salad, main course and dessert. I asked for more than 10 Thai chillis added to my papaya salad, and after eating it, I felt as hot as the weather there. Thank God, the diarrhea that I had for more than one week was stopped after this hot papaya salad.

_MG_4018_MG_3836

What do we need:

- 180g Shrimp (without skin and head)
- 15-20 Sweet basil leaves
- 2  Cloves of garlic
- 1  Middle size  carrot
- 1  Middle size  onion
- 1  tsp sugar
- 2  sp fish sauce
- 1  sp Oyster sauce
- 2 chillies

_MG_4080_MG_4047

How to cook it:

1: First chop carrot and onion into same size pieces of around 3x3cm. Chop the chilli and garlic into small pieces.

2: Heat oil in a pan and fry the chopped garlic. Half a minute later add chopped carrots, onions and shrimp and stir 2 minutes.

3: Add sugar, fish sauce, oyster sauce and chilli. Stir 2 minutes, then add sweet basil, turn off fire.

Original Champignon mushroom

 _MG_3526_MG_3349

The most delicious food is the simplest to cook.

A few years ago we were in a Korean BBQ restaurant in Tianjin, China. The owner came to our table and showed us how to BBQ champignon mushrooms: she took off the champignon’s stem, and placed the cap upside down onto the barbecue. 1 Or 2 minutes later, the champignon’s cap filled up with water. The owner said: “Add a little bit of salt, drink it’s water first, then eat it”. We did, and never forgot it!

Even though now is not the BBQ season, we still can cook these champignon mushrooms in a simple way.

_MG_3593_MG_3569

What we need:

- Some champignon (or common) mushrooms
- Some salt
- Some black pepper

How to do it:

First clean the mushrooms and take off their stems.
Heat some butter in a frying pan, and wait for it to melt. Then, place the champignon hats upside down into the pan and cook on small fire. After about 1 minute,  the champignon’s water begins to come, two more minutes as water almost fills the “champignon’s bowl”, turn off fire, sprinkle salt and black pepper.

_MG_3673_MG_3684

Tip: you also can use a cover to cover the pan after you put all champignons in it, 1 or 2 minutes. This way is more fast, and champignons will become more softer.