Belachan beehoon

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I made this a day before my driving test and I actually had a lesson that day. Now anyone who’s ever had to cook with balachan before knows …. The smell!!! Wow!!! It really stays with you! The unfortunate thing is you become desensitised after half an hour of cooking with it. My poor driving instructor had to suffer through the smell, as even after two clothes changes i still couldn’t get rid of it!

Anyway I’m only writing this post up like a fortnight after it happened, so I’m at uni at the moment listening to my lecturer prattle on about all the layers of bone, I mean its great but we already covered it in a previous unit so I can’t help but tune out, I also managed to oversleep and miss the first five minutes!!!! I so need coffee I’ve only had like 2 cups so far and my eyes are closing! You know I think this is becoming more of a diary or a rant session instead of a food blog…ah well I apologise in advance for the future rants! Anyways before I get started on my notes I better post this up, hope you love it as much as me 🙂

Prep time: 10 mins

Cooking time: 20 mins

Ingredients:

  • 125g balachan
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 cup water
  • 300g asam
  • 6-12 tablespoon sugar (go by taste)
  • 1/2 -1 tablespoon sambal (again go by taste)
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • 150g rice vermicelli

Method:

  1. Place the rice vermicelli in a bowl and soak in water
  2. In a separate bowl soak the asam in the cup of water.
  3. In a hot pan add the oil, cut the baldachin into slices and add to the hot pan. Using a spatula cut the baldachin into small pieces while frying it, or until it crumbles apart. (For anyone who has a barbecue I highly recommend you do this outside!!! The smell!!!)
  4. Remove the asam seeds from the asam/water mixture and transfer to a pot and bring to the boil.
  5. add in the balachan and stir
  6. reduce the heat to medium and add in the sugar, and samba. Taste and add any extra seasoning accordingly
  7. Remove beehoon from the water, slice cucumber into tiny strips, blanch the bean sprouts. Add to a bowl, pour the sauce over the top and mmmenjoy!

top left: soaking beehoon, top right: frying belachan, bottom left: mixture of asam, belachan, sugar and sambal, bottom right: sambal used

Deconstructed Ice Chendol

Because its freezing, I figure why not make the body work harder and raise its metabolic rate so I decided to make ice chendol:P I’m a sucker for punishment so I figure why not make, enjoy, and regret afterwards like always! If you do feel like doing the same, I recommend making this freezing cold dessert and eating it in a highly heated room. I’m currently shaking, eating and watching a movie as a write, seriously most depressing movie ever – ‘Kane and Able’ its actually from a book by Jeffery Archer that I read several years ago, I didn’t realise they had made it into a movie until I stumbled upon it yesterday at the video store. I figured I better watch it to see how it compares, unfortunately it is quite similar hence the depressing- only diff is the  book is captivating while the bad acting and slow pace of the movie allows me to be easily sidetracked.

Anyway before I start a rant on it, here’s a spin on an old classic. Ice Chendol traditionally is a delicious asian drink of palm sugar, coconut milk, shaved ice, red beans and green thinymajigs(chendol). I was trying to think of how else I could present it, to see if it could compete with the traditional drink. I honestly don’t think there’s is a better way to present it than the original drink style, but I did try it in three ways – with the blue plate being the ‘deconstructed ice chendol’, let me know what you think 🙂

Ice chendol

Prep time: 10mins for the chendol, overnight for the beans

Cooking time: 15 mins

Ingredients:

chendol ingredients

  • Shaved ice
  • 50g red beans
  • 20ml palm sugar (You can buy it in liquid form or buy it hard and boil with water and pandan leaves
  • 20ml coconut milk

for the chendol (green thingymajigs)

  • 125 grms rice flour
  • 50 grms sago flour
  • 450ml water
  • 1 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pandan extract
Utensils:
  • Icing bag and round tip (there are disposable ones which you can easily buy at your local coles or woolies if you don’t have any or hate the cleanup!)
  • ice shaver machine

Method:

to make the chendol

  1. mix the sago flour and rice flour together in a bowl
  2. Add the water, sugar and panda extract into a deep sauce pan. Bring to the boil while stirring so the sugar doesn’t crystallise.
  3. turn down the heat to medium and slowly add the flour mixture while constantly whisking.
  4. Once all the flour has been added and the mixture has become a thick paste turn off the heat and pour into a piping bag (I used this method as I wanted to create long chendol for the deconstructed dish, if you are not doing this feel free to use the traditional chendol hold that can be easily bought from most chinese shops)
  5. fill a bowl with cold water and add ice
  6. cut off the tip of the piping bag, and using a tea towel (as the mixture is extremely hot), pipe the mixture into the cold water, making sure the tip doesn’t touch the water or it will become clogged.
to make to red beans and palm sugar
  1. soak the beans overnight in water
  2. add the beans to a pot and fill with enough water so that it just covers the beans
  3. boil until the beans are soft and just about to split
  4. if using solid palm sugar add to a pot and add a small amount of water (enough so the sugar doesn’t burn)
  5. bring to the boil until the palm sugar has dissolved and a sugar syrup remains.

to assemble

– on a plate

  1. make a cone out of foil (for the shaved ice seen in the picture) add a little of the shaved ice and add 1 teaspoon of the palm sugar, add a little  more ice and another teaspoon of palm sugar.
  2. Invert on a plate so the ice is remove from the mold, add the coconut milk on top of the ice, add the beans and chendol to the plate.

– in a glass

  1. Add the beans, chendol and then fill with ice, add the sugar and coconut milk and enjoy!

top left: flour mixture, top right: the liquid mixture, bottom right: the mixture combined after whisking away for a while!, bottom left: brains 😛 just kidding it’s the chendol after piping into ice water

Ice chendol in a glass