Wednesday, March 31, 2010

How to Cook an Easy Steak [for dummies]

Hello, I'm Chef KING MING
Today I'm gonna teach you how to cook a simple steak
Note that this is an unorthodox method of cooking steaks
My F&B lecturers, Culinary Science Chefs will probably slaughter me
if they were to see this post, but heck...
It is simply for saving time, money, equpiment and logistics.

Here's the shopping list:
1. Beef Blade Steak (276g) AUD3.86
2. Sunny Queen Farm Eggs (12pc) AUD5.99
3. Tabasco Sauce (60ml) AUD4.22

Lets get started!

Step 1
Marinate the Steak
Of cos if your steak is frozen, you have to defroze it first
Make sure that its not dripping wet, else you'll be in a lot of danger!
I'll tell you why later..
Anyhows I marinated with Salt+Garlic, Salt, Pepper and Tabasco sauce.
You may use anything that makes you happy
and I'm not responsible if you get diarrhea.
How to marinate? Just sprinkle about a tablespoon full of each
and massage your steak gently
(like how you would to your girlfriend when you're half asleep).
How long to marinate? You may marinate it for as long as you please
1 hour? 2 hours? Or even 30 years, perhaps by that time
human have discovered the technology to bring your steak back to life.
Moo.. Anyways I'm doing just 15min, I have a very busy life.

Step 2 (optional)
Limber Up
Similar to Zombieland Rule Number 18
Definitely not because the Steak will pounce on you for revenge
but do get some stretching done cos more dexterity is required
for the completion of this meal
You may follow me in my Roger Federer Warm-up Routine
while the steak is marinating..
Alternatively, you may do 10 Power Serves on Wii Tennis.

Step 3
Heat up your pan
Put some oil in it
Just enough to cover the base of the pan
We're gonna cook some eggs
What I am doing in the photo is a check to see the pan is hot enough
My hand is just slightly above the oil, not touching it
If you had mastered 铁砂掌 (Iron Fist) from Shaolin Temple or television
by all means, go test the hot oil with your fingers or tongue.

Step 4
Fry your Egg
You may do an omelette, sunnyside up whatever you prefer
I'm juz gonna fry it and flip it in halves like a 荷包蛋 (Wallet Egg)
How? Just crack the egg into the pan and swirl it so that
the egg gets spread out evenly
Wait till its relatively hard enough on the bottom,
flip one side towards the other.
Its easier on a non-stick pan, else use more oil.
Easy Peasy

Step 5
Add Baked Beans
Just pour in 1/3 canned baked beans
beside the egg to warm them up a bit
Heins Baked Beans are cheap and good
About AUD1/can
I don't know how much air it gives you
I do not fart surf..

Step 6
Cooking the Steak
Plate the Egg and Beans
Now we're gonna cook the Steak
Very important why I mention the Steak must not be dripping wet
If it is, the oil will splatter and you will get lots of free blisters
Trust me you do not want that!
Now with the tip of the steak touching the pan
So now gently and slowly slide it onto the pan.
"Clean as you go" I like to do my dishes
halfway through cooking, it saves time
I repeat, I am a very busy man!

How long do I cook my steak?
RARE: Cook each side for a few seconds, brown the surface and serve. High Heat.
MEDIUM RARE: Cook each sides longer. High Heat.
MEDIUM: Cook longer than long (what am I talking about?) Medium Heat.
MEDIUM WELL: Cook longer than longer than long. High Heat then Medium Heat.
WELL DONE: Cook same time or a bit longer than medium well. Medium Heat.
I usually have my steaks medium rare when I eat out.
But due to time constrait and the need to settle my meal fast
I'm gonna cook it medium well, and test the doneness by pressing it with my finger.
Does take some practice to perfect it, if you really wanna save all the trouble,
microwave it!

Step 7 (optional)
Speed up the Cooking
I'm gonna reduce the cooking time but poking holes
and cutting pockets on the steak
Its an ugly, distasteful way to treat a steak
So if you are a steak-lover who dreams of having sex with cows,
get a cheap steak or skip this step.
You will not seal the juices properly if you were to pocket your steak!
Likewise, you may wanna vent your anger on the steak
even before you cook it, but its easier to slice through when its slightly cooked.
Or to save even more time, you may cut them into dices.

Step 8
Charring the Fats
No I'm not name-calling girls who go by the name Charmaine, Charlene, Charmander etc
I'm cooking the side of the steak where the fats are
It makes the fats fragrant and tasty
If you're a health freak, you may remove the fats before you cook it.

Step 9
Plate your steak

Food Quality: 7.5/10
Food Presentation: 6/10
Value for Money: 9/10
Skills Involved: 4/10
Time Saving: 7.5/10
Mess Created: 6/10
Hazard Risk: 6/10
Other Comments: The oil splattering could be hazardous, so cook at low-medium heat if possible.

Recipe also available at

How to Cook Pasta [for dummies]

Today I'm gonna teach you how to make a step-by-step quick
Tomato-based Pasta
This is a fairly simple dish that doesn't require much time and effort
Un-conventional ingredients were used as "cheat codes" for efficiency
without compromising the taste of your meal

Intended for:
1. People who rarely cook, are sucky cooks, are lazy to do mis en place
2. Busy students/workers who need a quick meal
3. Modern women who can't cook for nuts or amateurs
4. Hungry cheapskates on budget meals
5. People who do not have elaborated kitchen equipments

To start, lets take a look at the
Shopping List:
1. Coles Pasta Sauce (700g) AUD1.99
2. Coles Parmesan Cheese (250g) AUD4.39
3. Coles Salt (500g) AUD0.79
4. Mckenzies Pepper (100g) AUD2.73
5. Masterfood Salt Garlic (62g) AUD1.85
6. Masterfood Chillies Hot (27g) AUD2.52
7. Masterfood Parsley (4g) AUD1.54
8. Brown Mushrooms (200g) AUD2.79
9. Sanremo Zita Penne (500g) AUD1.95
10. Minced Pork (200g) AUD1.40

Notice that you can use these items to cook like what?
3-4 servings and most of them are reusable and optional.
I'll be preparing a slightly above average Asian portion sized meal.
Do the mathematics and Standard Deviations, work out your own budget.
This is just what I would use, you may be creative.
This meal costs me around AUD4
and 20min off my busy schedule.

This dish cannot, I repeat CANNOT, be used to impress your girlfriend,
potential girlfriend, gay partner, future mother-in-law whatever.
It is just a quick meal equivalent to a microwaved meal,
only taste better, healthier and cheaper!
I am not responsible if you cook this at Thanksgiving
that results in a divorce or war with your in-laws.

Let's get started!

Step 1
Cook your penne
(or any dried pasta that you have purchased, be it spaghetti, fettucini, macroni etc
I would slap you if you email me saying you've purchased lagsane skins
Tell you what.. tear them into bite-sizes and eat them like 面粉糕/板面 if you please.)
You may wanna add some salt to speed up the boiling
and prevent sticking of the pasta..
If you have plenty of time, you may wanna prepare a large bowl of ice water
to shock the pasta when its cooked.

Step 2
Chop up the mushrooms

I'm only doing this while my penne is boiling
because I am good at multi-tasking. I can play PSP, watching television, listen to the radio, brush my teeth and countdown to the new year while having sex. If you can't cook a meal without burning down the kitchen, do this before you boil your pasta, capiche?
Notice I did not cut them into slices too thin, I want soft chewy mushrooms in my pasta.
If you prefer flossing your teeth with mushrooms, bring them to your sashimi chef.

Step 3
Cook the Pasta Sauce

Heat up your pan, add some oil, dump in about 250g of pasta sauce
(you may add all 700g if you want pasta tomato soup
and if you may ask - what kind of oil should I use? Olive, Corn, Sunflower etc?
Its up to you, I'm just using normal cooking oil cos after all my herbs and spices
trust me you can't taste your EXPENSIVE-extra-extra-extra-hail-mary-virgin-olive oil)
When you think its heated up enough, throw in your minced meat (defroze if frozen)
and break them apart, stir them around up down left right
You may give it a lil toss if its not your responsibility to clean the kitchen later

Note: My pasta is still boiling throughout. My definition of "Al Dente" may be different from yours. If you like your pasta soft and runny like baby food, cook it overnight in a slow-cooker beforehand. If you like them crunchy, you don't even need to boil them.

Step 4
Throw in your Diced Mushrooms

Notice that I have to separate this step. I'm about to introduce an optional step which if you're not particular about what you eat, you may skip.
I have thrown in the mushrooms, give the pan a lil swirl and covered it with a lid.
It is crucial to minimise touching the mushrooms too much if you want juicy mushrooms.
They are fragile and delicate little fungus that shrivel up as you touch them.
(Unlike women, they are of an indirect relation - the less you touch them, the more juice they produce)

So here I want minimal contact. How to tell if your mushrooms are cooked?
There is a hissing sound when you put in the mushrooms
When it turns into a soft and slow hiss, off the heat.

FAQ: I can't hear the hissing sound, is there something wrong with my mushrooms?
ANS: There is something wrong with your ear; otherwise turn off your television, radio or girlfriend. Every fresh mushroom hiss like a snake, except of cos smaller and less juicier ones like enoki/nametake (which you probably need to plug in industrial speakers).

Step 5
Season your pasta sauce

Add salt, pepper, herbs, spices, soy sauce, vinegar whatever you like.
I've added just sprinkles of salt+garlic, chillies and parsley.
Drain out the water from the pasta,
(you may want to massage your pastas with olive oil at this part)
and throw everything into a bowl/plate.
Grab a handful of grated parmesan cheese and sprinkle them over the top.

Step 6
Eat your f*ckin' pasta while pippin' hot

Notice that you save a lot of time on preparing the pasta sauce from scratch.
Of course if you want you can start by peeling tomatoes and onions.
Do note that this recipe is mostly for lazy amateurs.

Food Quality: 8/10
Food Presentation: 6/10
Value for Money: 10/10
Skills Involved: 2/10
Time Saving: 9/10
Mess Created: 3/10
Hazard Risk: 2/10
Other Comments: In conclusion, it is a LOW risk, LOW mess, LOW skill, LOW cost meal.

FAQ: Your recipe sucks! My lecturer failed me when I used it in my F&B project.
ANS: I get that a lot, especially if your lectuer is female.

FAQ: Your recipe sucks! My kitchen burst into flames and I'm now homeless.
ANS: Buy insurance before you cook in future. Go collect your welfare cheque.

FAQ: Your recipe rocks! I just made twenty grands profit selling this in my restaurant.
ANS: Transfer 10% of your monthly profit into my bank account, thanks.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Tân Thành (Inala Civic Centre)

We're here today at
Inala Civic Centre (Vietnamese Village)
Brisbane, Australia

Lunch is at Tân Thành (Tan Thanh)
I suppose it is a traditional Vietnamese restaurant
To me, Vietnamese food is always about Pho (Glass noodles), Beef Noodles or Rice Wraps
Lets see if there're more authentic dishes...

The restaurant was pretty packed during lunch hour
However we were very fortunate to find a seat for 5 of us

It looks pretty interesting to me
As there are "DIY" dishes
Does it mean its made by the chef or I have to wrap the paper roll myself?

Can someone enlighten me on what BROKEN RICE is?

Looking at item 79 Che Ba Mau
3 coloured drink - jelly, red & green bean & coconut
Sure sounds like Chendol to me! =)

I had some glass noodles soup
Oh boy.. There were so many ingredients inside
Prawn, Fish Cake, Squid, Chicken, BBQ Pork, Quail Egg, Pork Lard,
Bean Sprout etc etc etc
Its like a treasure chest!

And the glass noodles were delicious!
Unlike in Singapore.. Hur hur..

Diners today - Granny Indonesia, J.Tan

Matt, Ian and KING MING

Young Coconut Drink and the 3-Coloured Drink

Pretty awesome! =)

More photos at

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Day 32-33 Brisbane Food

Lunch at HANAICHI (Queen Street)
Its easily the most popular fastfood in the area
Always crowded with long queues

I had Teriyaki Chicken Don
Pretty good stuff.. Cheap too!

Sawadee Ka
West End

Beautiful Thai-styled Asian decorations
Lovely ambience with traditional Thai instrumental music

Comfy cubicles for groupies

Diners today..
Mr. and Mrs. Jay

Fei Fei and Dr. Sui-Guan



Thai Dim Sims and Money Bags?
Somebody save me from the Dim Sim Mania!

Orders taken by a friendly Asian lady

It seems that Jay and Winnie
has got magnets on their palms
They are forever holding hands!

Pad Thai
AUD 14.90

Chunky Beef Soup

Thai Laksa

Thai Salad

The food were awesome!
Every Tuesday and Wednesdays Lunch
They have 10% off for Students!
We had a great dining experience there..

After meals at West End

African+Asian themed Cafe
that is ever so popular
Its crowded 24-7, long queues throughout opening hours

Cafe Latte
New York Cheese Cake

10% for Students at all time
Just flash your Student ID


Monday, March 22, 2010

Ajisen Ramen (George Street, Brisbane City)

Dinner today.. George Street

I must first tell you how much I hate Singapore's Ajisen;
they're really so horrible I swear my dog won't eat it!
Let's hope this one at Brisbane will change my mind..

The menu item is pretty much the same..

Real chopsticks instead of wooden disposable ones..
Service is by authentic Japanese staff..
Ambience is bright and inviting,
restaurant plays soft classical music

I ordered Miso Chashu Ramen
AUD 14.50
One thing I hate most when I eat ramen is a hard boil egg
Ramen eggs are supposed to be soft and runny with an orange yolk
But this miso chashu ramen has got great soup
and very tasty chashu (roast pork)
definitely beats the Singapore chains hands down
In addition, service was FANTASTIC!
Shame on you - Ajisen, Singapore

Set B comes with a Chicken Chunk Rice
The Chicken Chunks are fragrant and tasty
Kinda like mini Tori Katsu
Rice is fragrant and perfectly cooked
Additional AUD 7
Comes with a canned drink of your choice too!

Winnie has Ajisen Ramen
AUD 12

Kendrick has Katsu Ramen
AUD 16
He says that its super!

Black Sesame Ice-cream
Lacks texture and fragrant
but wat do you expect from a pre-packed?
However compensates with creamy taste.

Melon Sorbet
Very nice! =)

Guava Sorbet
Super nice =)

Yum yum yum yum yum yum yum..

[General Rating]
Food Quality: 8.5/10
Value for Money: 8/10
Beverage Quality: 9/10 (Pokka)
Service: 9/10
Ambience: 9/10
Return Factor: 10/10
Other Remarks: Doesn't beat Tampopo but pretty damn impressive for Ajisen!