Monday, 8 February 2016

Chinese New Year 2016 : Day 1 Feeding the Clan


Today is the first day of new year and I was still in a coma when the alarm went off at 4:00am. I am very sure there were firecrackers going off past midnight but I was dead to the world. In years past, I used to curse those revelers for disturbing my sleep but not this year.

When I finally woke up (at 5:30am) I went to the kitchen to take out the minced pork that was defrosting in the fridge. I also took out the baked potatoes which I made and froze in advance a week ago. I was going to make meatloaf to serve with pasta and salad.


It was rather therapeutic mixing the ingredients by hand. Then I placed the whole lot into the corningware which I used the night before to house my lousy Ayam Masak Merah.


Then I topped it off with bacon and I knew that would get the nod of approval from the clan.


While the meatloaf was baking, I fried some sliced chorizo for the pasta. I bought the chorizo on a whim a few months back and it had been sitting in the freezer.


I took a sniff at it and it did not smell that good. But it's all I had and I took a chance.


Well, it became wonderful after it was fried. I must stock up some more.

After that was done, I sauteed some onions and garlic to mix together with the pasta.

This is where I censor what happened next (no photos). I have a confession to make. Phong Hong can't cook pasta. I mean, she can but she does not do it well. I had two packets of Angel Hair pasta and it was quite naive of me to think that I had to cook both so that there will be enough to go around. My clan, we are big eaters. 

So I boiled a huge pot of water and dumped both packets of pasta into the water. Angel Hair pasta cooks very fast, the package instruction said 2 minutes but it was not done by then. It took me slightly more than 3 minutes. 

I drained the pasta and that's when I realized that two packets is a huge amount. Some of the pasta got stuck to the bottom of the pot and the ones in the colander were sticking to each other. It was a nightmare. I was out of my comfort zone.

I poured half into the large corningware and poured the sauteed onions/garlic into the pasta and tried to toss it. The oil was not enough so I added more olive oil. Mix, mix, mix. Then I added the fried chorizo which I had cut into smaller pieces.

Obviously, there wasn't enough chorizo but I continued to toss. I also added some Italian flat leaf parsley to make it pretty. I then seasoned the pasta with salt and pepper because it was grossly under-seasoned (the chorizo oil was quite salty but there wasn't enough of it). Never mind. I will just leave salt and pepper on the dining table for my guests to do their own seasoning.

This is the best I can do. It looks like fried beehoon.

By that time, the other half of the pasta was all clumpy in the colander. So I threw it away. What a waste. 

Then my made the salad dressing. I made a honey mustard dressing ala Salad Shack.


I mixed whole grain mustard, honey, red wine vinegar, olive oil, garlic powder and salt. 


Drat! I forgot to snap a pic of the salad. Or the three dishes on the dining table. 

Well, I am happy to say that the meatloaf and salad was very well received with a seal of approval from the matriarch of the clan. The pasta? hah...hah... YB1 (younger brother no. 1) gave me some pointers which I will take note when I cook pasta. Pasta is more his domain and my sister-in-law told me that he has declared his kitchen closed for the whole week. Tomorrow my kitchen is closed hah...hah... 

So that wraps up day 1.

30 comments:

  1. Phong Hong, I was waiting to see the end result of your meatloaf and ended up disappointed! Ha ha! I have not tried chorizo before.

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    1. hah..hah...sorry Nancy, I was so kan cheong I forgot to snap photo :D

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  2. do not worry-I usually have the same problem - somehow I belive it's too little pasta and cook a big pot which I have to divide into different purposes if I only have an idea what to do

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    1. I should have kept the extra in the freezer.

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  3. Happy Chinese New Year to you! Gong Xi Fa Cai! I can recognize the Angel Hair pasta, it does not look like mee hoon at all to me. I guess you were too busy being the host to remember to take the photos of the meatloaf and salad but it does not matter since your guests like them. What are you going to eat for tomorrow since your kitchen is closed?

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    1. Gong Xi Fa Cai! Well, I am eating out hah..hah... time to take a break from cooking :)

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  4. It sure looks like fried bihun to me! Haven't cooked any so far in the new Monkey year. Qong Xi Fa Cai, Happy Chinese New Year! Cheers!

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    1. It does, doesn't it? hah..hah... Gong Xi Fa Cai!

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  5. Hi Phong Hong,

    Happy Chinese New Year to you!!! I see that you are more the ang moh type of cook... Pasta and meatloaf for CNY? Yeah... Confirmed that I'm right :p

    Hope that you have a rest today :) Is somebody else cooking for you? Nevertheless, enjoy!

    Zoe

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    1. Gong Xi Fa Cai, Zoe! I'm not good in Ang Moh food but it seems easier to prepare compared to Asian food hee..hee..

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  6. Angel Hair is difficult to cook even for the seasoned pros lah, even if he be Italian. Next time stick to spaghetti or linguine :/ ...

    Hahaha, I get the feeling after reading through these posts, if seems like you are especially stressed up about having to deliver the goods for CNY, maybe the stress got to you and you end up miscued a lot... Rilek jer, cooking for family no need stress one... :D

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    1. Ya kah? I could get spaghetti that's why I cooked Angel Hair.

      That's me, I get stressed easily and when cooking for others, it's not the same as cooking for myself.

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  7. Your angel hair pasta look good what. :)

    Happy New Year to you and family.

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  8. Enjoy the rest of your CNY, let someone else do the cooking and u just enjoy eating! :)

    PS when u boil pasta, u need to make sure u add adequate salt to the water.

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    1. Thanks, Yen! Will remember your tip the next time I cook pasta.

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  9. Hi Phong Hong, 2 packets is 1 Kg. It's really a big lot. You can store the extras in the fridge for frying later. Anyway, we learn from experiences. Keong Hee Huat Chye.

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    1. Hi Kimmy! Ya, that's a lot hah..hah.. Keong Hee Huat Chye!

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  10. Hahahaa such a coincidence that I made almost the same mistake, I hardly cook pasta. 1st mistake, last minutes when about to cook that I bought Angel hair pasta (so far I thought there is only 1 type spaghetti type) 2nd mistake, dump 1 package are too much for 5 persons :) hahahaaa , so I can imagine some more you cooked 2 packages .... that really huge portions :D Anyway, here I would like to wish you a Happy Chinese New Year to you and your family :)

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    1. hah..hah...so glad I am not the only one :D Gong Xi Fa Cai, DG!

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  11. When I saw the first pic, I knew you made some kind of fried noodles although it I knew it wasn't meehoon but I didn't think it was angel hair pasta either since it was all broken up. Anyway, I'm sure it tastes good coz it looked really good...as fried noodles! :D I usually season the water with salt and sometimes I add in some olive oil to prevent the pasta from sticking together.

    I know what you mean...sometimes we're so tired from all the cooking, we forget to take pics of it (it has happened to me before too).

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    1. Phew....it's all over now hah...hah... I still have one more dinner to host but it will be more relaxed. Note to self - remember to take pictures :D

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  12. Same with Nancy, i also wanted to see the meatloaf...

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  13. Angel's Hair is something new to me who doesn't cook.
    You so pandai and innovative to add bacons on top to get approval ratings! Yummy Yums!

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    1. The best dish was the meatloaf. The Angel Hair....boo...hoo..hoo...

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