Archive for the ‘Expat Bloggers’ Category

How to Make Your Own Vietnamese Curry Powder

Posted on the May 18th, 2017 under Expat Bloggers by

How to Make Your Own Vietnamese Curry PowderMake your own blend of Vietnamese curry powder from scratch instead of using store-bought or if you don’t have access to a specialty Asian market.
This post contains affiliate links where, at no additional cost to you, we receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on our blog.
Before any other curry touched my lips, there was Vietnamese curry. It was, and still is, a staple at my mom’s house.
Coconut- and tomato-based, thickened by starchy potatoes, I prefer my Viet curry not too soupy-thin yet not too stewy-thick. Like all curries and stews, it’s better the next day. Click here for the recipe to my Vietnamese chicken curry.
For the recipe on homemade Vietnamese curry powder, keep reading…
Until recently, I’ve been making my Vietnamese chicken curry with store-bought Vietnamese curry powder from Vietnam. But as I got down to my last curry packet, I resolved to grind my own spices and make my own blend.
I used to be unfamiliar and confused at all the different kinds of spices. Words like cardamon, fennel, and turmeric were all Greek to me.
Continue reading at Ginger and Scotch…

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Birthday Party at Ella’s Creamery (Dubai Parks and Resorts)

Posted on the May 9th, 2017 under Expat Bloggers by

Birthday Party at Ella’s Creamery (Dubai Parks and Resorts)We hosted our daughter’s third birthday party at Ella’s Creamery – a 1950s American-themed ice cream parlor located in Dubai Parks and Resorts.
I don’t know who was more excited about having a kids birthday party at an ice cream parlor – my daughter who has a huge sweet tooth or the other little 3-year-old boys and girls who were allowed to indulge in quite a lot of ice cream and other sweeties.
The Party Set-Up
A very girlie theme to suit my very girlie daughter with pink helium balloons and delicate, white china plates (which thankfully no one broke!).
My mom was in town and she helped me sew little aprons as party favors for the kids – they were so freaking adorable in them.

Crazy Shake Workshop
The kids arrived and were seated at the party table where they were treated to a Crazy Shake workshop.
Each child was given a mason jar to decorate which were later filled with scoops of ice cream and strawberry or chocolate milkshakes.

The staff demonstrated how to first cream the rim of the mason jar with colorful frosting which acted as the glue for marshmallows and other goodies.
Continue reading at Ginger and Scotch…

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Vietnamese Chicken Curry (Cà Ri Gà)

Posted on the May 8th, 2017 under Expat Bloggers by

Vietnamese Chicken Curry (Cà Ri Gà)Make this Vietnamese chicken curry with store-bought or with my homemade Vietnamese curry powder. Like all stews, it tastes better the next day and also freezes very well.
This post contains affiliate links where, at no additional cost to you, we receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on our blog.
Vietnamese chicken curry (or cà ri gà) is a simple stew that is a wonderfully flavorful and cooks up super fast. It also works well with duck drumsticks but will require a longer cooking time.
It’s best to use Vietnamese curry powder which is what gives this dish its unique flavors. If you can’t find Viet curry powder in your local Asian grocery store, you can make your own with my recipe here. You can also substitute Madras curry powder which will work but won’t taste as authentic.
The recipe is simple:

marinate chicken
heat oil and toss in garlic
brown chicken
toss in everything else (except coconut milk)
cover ingredients with water and simmer 30 minutes
add coconut milk and simmer a further 10 minutes and you’re done!

Continue reading at Ginger and Scotch…

You May Also Like:
Emirati Recipe: Chicken and Rice (Machboos / Fogga Dejaj)
How to Make Your Own Vietnamese Curry Powder
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Mom’s Vietnamese Sweet and Sour Soup

Recipe for Pho (aka Operation Pho Noodle Soup in Sunny Dunny)

Posted on the May 1st, 2017 under Expat Bloggers by

Recipe for Pho (aka Operation Pho Noodle Soup in Sunny Dunny)Pho is a Vietnamese rice noodle soup made with beef stock simmered for hours with star anise, cloves, cinnamon, onion and ginger. It is served with sliced raw beef, garnished with fresh Asian herbs, and finished off with a squeeze of lime.
While I was in Scotland visiting Scotch’s parents, my father-in-law (FIL) wanted to learn more about Chinese and Vietnamese cooking and was very keen on learning how to make Pho, the Vietnamese rice noodle soup – that he had read about in my recent post on my mom’s Vietnamese kitchen.
Making Pho in Dubai often involves driving to a few supermarkets to source all the ingredients. Usually one place for the beef bones (Carrefour or LuLu’s), another place for the noodles (Geant or the Korean market in Barsha) and one last place for the Thai basil (Sunflower market in Karama) although the last two years I have been growing my own Thai basil.
If I had ever complained about the challenges of finding Pho ingredients in Dubai, I take it all back after experiencing what happened in Dunbar, Scotland, the beautiful sea-side town where the my in-laws live.
Continue reading at Ginger and Scotch…

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Recipe for Pho (aka Operation Pho Noodle Soup in Sunny Dunny)

Posted on the May 1st, 2017 under Expat Bloggers by

Recipe for Pho (aka Operation Pho Noodle Soup in Sunny Dunny)Pho is a Vietnamese rice noodle soup made with beef stock simmered for hours with star anise, cloves, cinnamon, onion and ginger. It is served with sliced raw beef, garnished with fresh Asian herbs, and finished off with a squeeze of lime.
While I was in Scotland visiting Scotch’s parents, my father-in-law (FIL) wanted to learn more about Chinese and Vietnamese cooking and was very keen on learning how to make Pho, the Vietnamese rice noodle soup – that he had read about in my recent post on my mom’s Vietnamese kitchen.
Making Pho in Dubai often involves driving to a few supermarkets to source all the ingredients. Usually one place for the beef bones (Carrefour or LuLu’s), another place for the noodles (Geant or the Korean market in Barsha) and one last place for the Thai basil (Sunflower market in Karama) although the last two years I have been growing my own Thai basil.
If I had ever complained about the challenges of finding Pho ingredients in Dubai, I take it all back after experiencing what happened in Dunbar, Scotland, the beautiful sea-side town where the my in-laws live.
Continue reading at Ginger and Scotch…

You May Also Like:
Kimchi Udon Chicken Soup
Mom’s Garden and Vietnamese Kitchen
Bun Rieu in Saigon – Vietnamese Crab and Tomato Rice Noodle Soup
Mom’s Vietnamese Sweet and Sour Soup
Easy-Peasy Recipe: Fish in a Bag!

How to Make Hong Kong Egg Cakes (鷄蛋仔)

Posted on the May 1st, 2017 under Expat Bloggers by

How to Make Hong Kong Egg Cakes (鷄蛋仔)A popular street food in Hong Kong, I first came across these little egg cakes as a child growing up in New York City’s Chinatown. From a tiny red stall on Mosco Street, Cecilia Tam churned out pan after pan of these eggettes for over a decade but when she closed up shop, she left many die-hard followers forever craving her perfectly fluffy and heavenly egg cakes. This recipe is as satisfying for me as the Cecilia Tam original.

This post contains affiliate links where, at no additional cost to you, we receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on our blog. 
 
I’ve been reminiscing about a part of my childhood in New York’s Chinatown where I attended Chinese school every weekend. After class, mom or dad would walk me over to Mosco Street, where in a tiny red corner stall labored Cecilia Tam (aka the Egg Cake Lady), to buy a bag or two of her legendary egg puffs (aka eggettes) or 鷄蛋仔 – “gai daan jai” in Catonese.
Her stall became so popular over the years that more often than not there were more tourists waiting in line, clutching their cameras and tour books, than regulars.
Continue reading at Ginger and Scotch…

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How to Make Hong Kong Egg Cakes (鷄蛋仔)

Posted on the May 1st, 2017 under Expat Bloggers by

How to Make Hong Kong Egg Cakes (鷄蛋仔)A popular street food in Hong Kong, I first came across these little egg cakes as a child growing up in New York City’s Chinatown. From a tiny red stall on Mosco Street, Cecilia Tam churned out pan after pan of these eggettes for over a decade but when she closed up shop, she left many die-hard followers forever craving her perfectly fluffy and heavenly egg cakes. This recipe is as satisfying for me as the Cecilia Tam original.

This post contains affiliate links where, at no additional cost to you, we receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on our blog. 
 
I’ve been reminiscing about a part of my childhood in New York’s Chinatown where I attended Chinese school every weekend. After class, mom or dad would walk me over to Mosco Street, where in a tiny red corner stall labored Cecilia Tam (aka the Egg Cake Lady), to buy a bag or two of her legendary egg puffs (aka eggettes) or 鷄蛋仔 – “gai daan jai” in Catonese.
Her stall became so popular over the years that more often than not there were more tourists waiting in line, clutching their cameras and tour books, than regulars.
Continue reading at Ginger and Scotch…

You May Also Like:
Emirati Recipe: Fish Cakes (Sa-mak Koufta)
Inaugural Week, Day 7 – Ginger and Scotch Ice Cream
Wee Scotch Turns One Year Old!
Secret Ingredient Beer-Braised Chicken
Vietnamese Chicken Curry (Ca Ri Ga)

Where To Find Thai Basil and other Authentic Thai Food in Dubai?

Posted on the May 25th, 2015 under Expat Bloggers by

Fried Sweet Potatoes and BananasFried Sweet Potatoes and Bananas“Where in the world of Dubai do you buy your Thai groceries? Specifically Thai basil?”
That was the question I posed last week to the first Thai person that I had met in Dubai after living here seven years.
And so I learned that every Saturday, at the Royal Thai consulate in Dubai, a lady sets up a stand to sell Thai vegetables grown in her own garden.
I had so many questions for my new Thai friend:
-Can outsiders just walk in and buy these veggies?
-Will it be a problem that I don’t speak Thai?
-What time should I go?
-Are you sure it will be there next Saturday because I really want to check it out?!
And so this past Saturday, joined by Sally @ My Custard Pie, Little Ginger and I ventured into the Royal Thai Consulate in Umm Sequim hopeful for a glimpse of this market.
And we did indeed find it! Just past the security hut, under the car shades with the consulate villa in the background, we strolled into a mini Thai alfresco market.
Royal Thai ConsulateRoyal Thai Consulate (with the market on the left of pic)Sally and I made our rounds of the few vendors that were there while poor Little Ginger (in the yellow stroller below), tired and hot as the Dubai heat was in full swing, not-so-patiently waited for us to finish our gawking shopping.

There were maybe 9 or 10 folding tables manned by friendly Thai ladies who kindly welcomed us and who patiently answered all our questions about what they were selling.
I found the lady that grew her own vegetables and bought a packet of Gai Lan and Shanghai choy (similar to bok choy but with a light green stem instead of white) @ 10 dhs per bag. There were also bags of kang kong (aka water spinach), Sweet Thai Basil (horapha), and others I couldn’t identify.


The vegetable lady also sold beef ball and fish ball skewers and I bought 2 of each at 10 dhs per skewer.  The skewers came with a little baggie of spicy dipping sauce that had a soy sauce and tamarind (or maybe fish sauce?) base.
I enjoyed the fish balls better than the beef which were a bit dry but edible doused in the dipping sauce.
Left: Fried Bananas and Sweet Potatoes: Right: SkewersIt was very hot, at least 100°F (38°C), and although I didn’t mind the heat, Little Ginger being tired, hungry and grumpy began throwing a bit of a fuss. I tried to hurry through the different tables but I couldn’t help stopping at each one a few times because more and more food seemed to be coming out of their carrier bags.
In the end, I made away with more skewers of meat, a bag of deep-fried banana and sweet potato “fries” (for lack of a better word – which by the way, were AMAZING!), and a cup of grass jelly (known as chao kuai in Thailand; gulaman in the Philippines). Sally felt that the grass jelly beverage was too sweet for her taste but I quite enjoyed it. I’ve only tasted grass jelly in cans and this homemade version was different as it had a taste I could not completely identify – the closest flavor I can think of is Root beer.
Grass Jelly and Other Thai DrinksGrass Jelly and Other Thai DrinksSadly for us, the rice and salad dishes neatly packed in take-away containers were off limits as they were all pre-ordered but Sally and I placed a few orders of our own for pick-up next Saturday so…we will be back!

*    *    *    *    *
Practical info:  As far as I know, the market is held on Saturdays from 10:30am to 3pm.  Best to get there 11am onwards as the ladies were still setting up at 10:30am.  I don’t know how long the market will go for or if it will continue through the summer.
Note:  Thai basil and other Thai produce can also be found at Sunflower (aka “Queen Saba Grocery”) inside the Karama Fish Market. ?

Related posts:
Thai Basil, Taro, and Sugarcane
Chicken Stir-Fry with Thai Chilli Kaffir Lime Sauce
Ginger and Scotch Clams with Asian Basil
Eating Out for Under 100 Dhs
Asian Grocery Stores in Dubai