March 26, 2007

A Little Celebration

When the search was taking me near to nowhere to end, I said to myself that I was never going to get married. One person was so beautiful with smart brain offered indulgence and wealthiness made me worried if I would be able to be on the spotlight, and yet then decided not the very lifestyle I would be comfortable with. Then, there was a personality which was above everything but hey I wasn't the only one, so dropped that. Another person had given me promises of better future but never ever convinced me if he would love me enough for whoever and whatever I was, let alone facing every adjustment of natures, hormones, and faith.

I thought I was right. I thought I was going to be better off of the marriage thing. Yet, faith is but faith and I was wrong. I had to end my bachelorette of years. Modesty, faithful, genuine love, caring, and respectful were then the values of the last person I had met to be chosen the very right man to be my best buddy, husband, partner, lover, and imam of the family. And I'm enjoying life in the values we hold dear of each other's. That what makes life so much meaningful.

On that occasion of the big decision we both made to end our single years 5 years ago, we made a little celebration of our own time and our own love. We are thankful to be enjoying each other's companies and so grateful that we're happy.

These two little moulded rice are the symbols of our each existence, surrounded with all the joy and the richness of love we've been weaving along the years. And the sweetness of the dessert is a symbol of our affection which will not be vanished though the creamy custard had been licked off the bowls.

Here are the recipes of Lemon Grass Chicken, Eggs with Corn Kernels Gravy, Fried Tempeh with Sweet Soy Sauce, and Peach and Lemon Crème Brulee.

Lemon Grass Chicken

1.5kg whole chicken, washed and patted dry, butterflied (or halved or cut into portions), rubbed with halved lemon

Spices and herbs paste

Blend together:
2 Tbs coriander seeds,
sea salt,
8 garlic cloves, peeled,
1 tsp ground turmeric,
2cm fresh ginger,
3 lemon grass, white part only,
1 Tbs sweet chilli sauce

2 kaffir lime leaves,
300ml coconut cream,
100ml water,
1 Tbs oil and oil for deep frying

Heat 1 Tbs oil. Cook the paste until fragrant. Add in the chicken and cook until changed in color and all covered with spices. Pour in the coconut cream and water. Add the lime leaves. Cover the chicken and let simmer until the chicken cooked through. Alternatively, transfer the chicken and liquid into a roasting dish and bake in a preheated 180C oven until golden brown (this way, you do not need to deep fry). Remove the chicken from the gravy (reserve 2 cups for the gravy). Heat the oil in the deep fryer, then brown the chicken. Serve warm with fluffy jasmine or coconut rice.

Eggs with Corn Kernels Gravy

4 hard boiled eggs,
2 cups gravy from the chicken,
1 cup corn kernels

Simply heat the gravy and add in the corn kernels until the corn cooked. Correct the seasoning. Pour over the halved boiled eggs.

Fried Tempeh with Sweet Soy Sauce

250g block organic tempeh (I used Tonzu organic tempeh), sliced thinly and fried,
1 big shallot, finely chopped,
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped,
5cm lemon grass, bruised,
1cm ginger, bruised,
1 small bay leaf,
1 green chillie (you can slice it and add more together with red chillies if you like), fried,
1 Tbs sweet chilli sauce,
1 Tbs kecap manis,
1 tsp coconut cream, sea salt,
1 Tbs oil

Heat the oil. Add in chopped shallots, cook until clear, then add in chopped garlic, cook until fragrant. Then, add in the remaining ingredients, except the tempeh. Cook until thick and bubbly, then add in the fried tempeh. Remove from the pan while stirring frequently. Serve.

Peach and Lemon crème Brulee

Source: Foodtown Magazine, February-March 2007, Issue 33, p. 64

I know the sugar didn't melt according to plan for some reason, so pardon me. I just used the oven grill and I don't have a blow torch. Well, my beloved was simply enjoying it, so no bother.

4 poached peach halves (or about 12 well-drained canned peach slices),
¼ cup sugar,
finely grated rind of 1 lemon,
2 eggs,
300ml cream,
2 drops vanilla essence,
2 Tbs raw sugar

Place the peaches in two small heatproof dishes or one larger flan dish. Place the sugar, rind, and eggs in a bowl and beat well. Place the cream and vanilla in a saucepan and heat to just below boiling point. Gradually whisk the hot cream into the beaten eggs to make a custard. Pour the mixture through a sieve into a stainless steel bowl that will fit over a saucepan of simmering water. The water should not touch the base of the bowl. Stir the custard over the simmering water until it is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon. If you have a sugar thermometer, test for 80C. Do not boil the custard. Pour the custard over the peaches. Allow to cool slightly then cover and chill for at least 2 hours. Preheat the grill. Sprinkle the raw sugar over the custard and place under the grill for 5 minutes or until the sugar is melted and brown in patches. Alternatively, melt the sugar with a brulee torch. Either serve straight away or chill again and serve cold. Serves 2 generously.


Mandira said...

Arfi - thank you for visiting ahaar. Congratulations and here's a toast to several more wonderful years ahead.
Do post your entries for Green Blog Project. I look forward to your entries.

Barbara said...

Happy Anniversary Princess Arfi and John.

Arfi Binsted said...

Mandira-thanks. and i will.

Barb-thanks! Ha! Just for one day being induldged. But, hey... it's once for a lifetime, you see.

Lydia said...

Arfi, thanks for dropping by at My Kitchen. Saw that you have fried tempeh in this post, did you make the tempeh as well? I love tempeh but hard to find it here in Sydney, and I could not find the starter too.

Arfi Binsted said...

lydia-yes, aren't me two little sad girls? hehehe... one of my friends in Myanmar made tempeh herself, and I was told that one of Indonesian ladies who lives somewhere in Auckland makes tempeh herself. I asked where the starter comes from and it apparently was sent by her family from Java, Indonesia. So, I thought... well. I'm hopeless. I thought I could dry the ready-made tempeh that Tonzu made but they have used different starter. see, their tempeh hasn't got any white fungus like Indonesians made.

I am thinking if I can have somebody send me a starter than I can make tempeh myself.

thanks for visiting, Lydia. Keep in touch!