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Posts Tagged ‘bean curd’

Tim Wan Ho, SPAM Land.

Their Famous Baked Char Siu Bao

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Fried Noodles

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Steamed Bean Curd Bundle

The Cat liked the bundle.

Blanched Lettuce

The only vegetable dish on the menu.

Rice Roll with Char Siu

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Pan Fried Black Rice Mochi with Pineapple

The Cat liked. The Mouse, not so much.

Enjoy. Eat well.

The Mouse

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More like rearranging. I think we need a walk-in freezer (refrigerator too).

Threw together some odds and ends for last night’s “stew”.

Dried bean curd, dried seaweed, dried mushroom, dried wood ear fungus, dried shrimp, fresh Napa cabbage, and a stalk of celery. Salt and shoyu to taste.

Ta Dah!

Ta Dah!

Not really “monk’s food” (jai), but sorta kinda. Healthy-ish.

Cooked enough for The Cat’s lunch today.

Enjoy? Eat well.

The Mouse

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Kau Yuk?

Last week, eating out, impromptu at Nice Day Chinese Seafood Restaurant (1425 Liliha Street, Honolulu, Hawaii). We were in the area.

Eggplant and Tofu

Eggplant and Tofu

The Cat liked.

Vegetables with Glass Noodles

Vegetables with Glass Noodles

Not bad.

Chinese Style Pot Roast Pork with Taro

Chinese Style Pot Roast Pork with Taro

Detailed Shot

Detailed Shot

I know the dish as “Kau Yuk” (don’t as me to translate it). The Cat doesn’t even know what I’m talking about. And the internet has very little info except referencing to Hawai`i. Might be a regional thing.

It’s pork, usually the belly, seasoned with fermented bean curd, and cooked for a very long time. The bean curd is preserved in rice wine (white or red), and  sometimes with chili.  Because of the fermented bean curd, the meat takes on  the fermented, salty taste. It’s an acquired taste, but ask most old timers about it, and their eyes light up and they start to drool. 🙂

If my memory is correct, one of my father’s last solid foods he had was an order of kau yuk I snuck into his hospital room. The meat also wasn’t red, but he scarfed it down like a starving man (he hated hospital food).

This version was not bad, pretty good. Well prepared (like buttah), tasty, but … the taste (and color) I grew up with was somewhat different.

To get a better reference point, let’s channel The Doctor, H.G. Wells, Dr. Samuel Beckett, or any other time traveller.

One of my father’s favorite dishes. He was old school. The kau yuk had to be red. Almost like an Asian lacquer red. My palate was not so developed back then and I couldn’t appreciate the flavors and textures of a well prepared pork belly.

These are some examples (pulled from the internet) that would’ve gotten my father drooling.

Pot Roast Pork Belly (Red)

Pot Roast Pork Belly (Red)

Source: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=449178&page=100

Pot Roast Pork Belly (Red)

Pot Roast Pork Belly (Red)

Source: http://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/kunia-chinese-restaurant-waipahu?select=UoKJYuZyjYiwq6kYSBkLVQ#UoKJYuZyjYiwq6kYSBkLVQ

Not sure what these restaurants are using to achieve the red coloring. I’m curious.

Got a hold of a jar of the red fermented bean curd.

Label

Label

This is the same brand featured in a Ken Hom cookbook, so I feeling good about this.

The Stuff of Legends

The Stuff of Legends

Got some belly pork.

Belly Pork

Belly Pork

Followed a couple of recipes I found on the internet.

Parboiled the belly pork (I think this renders some of the fat out of the meat).

Sliced the pork into chunks, tried to crisp the skin a little.

And here’s where the recipes and I diverted.

Most of the recipes call for the pork to be marinated in the fermented bean curd mixture (along with sugar, soy sauce, or oyster sauce, or “hoi sin” sauce) then steamed with raw sliced taro.

Didn’t have taro nor a proper steamer to fit a dish to accommodate the pork (we have a make shift steamer that fits a bowl of rice or something similar).

So, I slowly simmered the “kau yuk” with the bean curd mixture.

Kau Yuk?

Kau Yuk?

The results were just okay, not great. The simmering liquid wasn’t the thick consistency of memory (a little cornstarch helped but not enough). You probably can’t tell from the picture but the coloring was redder than the dish we had at the restaurant but not the lacquer red I was hoping to achieve. The Cat said the taste was spot on though. The bits you see on the pork is the fermented bean curd not completely dissolving. I liked it. I compare it to undissolved salt crystals, I get bits of intense salt hits. Nom!

Turns out, one recipe calls for red food coloring. Uhm, no. Decades ago, I thought there was a ban on red dye No. 2 that’s still in effect.  I know it’s not the same red dye chemical, but still, eww. I’m contemplating the possibility of using a little beet juice the next time I try this. Not enough to change the flavor, but to add some “color” to the meat.

Anyway, bent your ear long enough.

Enjoy. Eat well.

The Mouse

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Went to New Panda Cuisine again (see here and here). It’s gotten to the point where several of the wait staff recognize us (mostly The Cat, she goes more often than The Mouse). Decent food, reasonable price = cheap eats. This time around.

Daily Soup

Pork bones, carrots, black-eyed peas, and peanuts (The Cat found one peanut).

Vegetable with Bean Curd Skin

The vegetable was Napa cabbage. I was expecting a variety of vegetables, sometimes descriptions get lost in translation. Very healthy.

Bean Curd with Brown Sauce

Deep-fried tofu, Shiitakemushrooms, and Shanghai cabbage. More healthy eating.

Salted fish and Diced Chicken with Bean Curd

The least healthy dish we ordered, still relatively healthy though.

There  you have it tofu three ways. It wasn’t planned, just happened that way. Didn’t realize what we did until after we ordered. Maybe it was the universe’s way of balancing after the bacon and pork belly lately. In any case, delicious.

We also received mango pudding for dessert, free (for their grand opening promotion).

Mango Pudding

Nice way to end the meal.

BTW, The Cat wanted a picture of this.

Rice Service Container

One of the uncles gave The Cat the nickname of “rice pot” because The Cat  likes rice. Fresh rice and The Cat is happy.

Enjoy. Eat well.

The Mouse

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