Tag Archives: pork

Porteño, Surry Hills

Porteno, Surry Hills

Oh hai chefs, we see you!

An up-close and personal view of chefs Elvis Abrahanowicz and Ben Milgate at work at the pass is just one of the many things I loved about our visit to Porteño.

Sometime in June, TFP, J and I got to work on our list, the places in Sydney we knew we had to visit.

One of the places that made the list was Porteño, where the meat is flame-grilled, the drinks are well mixed, and your servers decked out in their finest fifties’ finery.

Our blogger friends Craig and Caroline were more than happy to help us round out our numbers, bringing our number to five – the magical minimum number required for a booking at this usually packed out restaurant. Two seatings are available – 6.00 to 8.30pm, and 9.00pm to close.

My spidey sense told me that booking the first seating was the best option, for a number of reasons:

  • The food bloggers would need as much natural light as possible for better shots
  • We’d be walking around a lot, and therefore, would be hungry earlier than usual
  • And the most important question: what if they ran out of what we wanted before the second seating?
As we were seated in the busy restaurant just after six, I mentally high-fived past-Juji. Once again, that food blogger spidey sense paid off!

Porteno, Surry Hills

House baked bread, olive oil and pork pate, $2 per head

We each started with a house baked bread roll, which comes with a side of pork pate and fruity olive oil.

Porteno, Surry Hills

The unctuous pork pate is creamy and better than any butter I could hope for. It’s worth a try, even if you’re not usually a pate fan – it’s light, yet rich and very very moreish.

Porteno, Surry Hills

One of my favourite summer drinks, Pimm’s, is on the menu, and arrives topped up with lemonade and served over lots of ice. It’s one of those drinks I wish was available in more places – it’s fantastic with practically anything!

Porteno, Surry Hills

Calamares Asado, BBQ Calamari with Chickpea Sofrito,
Preserved Lemon & Watercress, $24

J and Craig are both keen to try the Calamares Asado, and I’m very happy to dig into the dish when it arrives.

Porteno, Surry Hills

The tendrils of squid are beautifully tender, with not a hint of rubber in sight.

There’s a zingy aroma from the preserved lemon, and we’re all pleasantly surprised by the chickpeas, which have been tossed in a blend of fragrant spices.

I love the crisp, fresh watercress, which is a favourite of mine, but usually absent from my own cooking and when I eat out.

Porteno, Surry Hills

As we eat we’re treated to a fireside view of the asado, the pit filled with ironbark embers which roasts the restaurant’s famous pork and lamb to tender perfection.

Porteno, Surry Hills

Chimichurri, Argentina’s famous herb-laden sauce, and Criolla, an onion and capsicum salsa, arrive in preparation for our meaty bounty.

Porteno, Surry Hills

Cordero a la Cruz, 8-hour wood fired milk-fed Mirrool Creek Lamb, $42

First to join us is the lamb, which is so tender it hardly warrants a knife and fork. There’s shards of crispy skin which we all enjoy. It’s crunchy and salty – crumbling away on my tongue.

Porteno, Surry Hills

Confession: I don’t usually like lamb. And I certainly never order it in a restaurant. But my dining partners insisted and I was glad they did – this was amazing! If all lamb was as tender and fragrant as this, I’d rewrite my no lamb policy.

Porteno, Surry Hills

Chanchito a la Cruz, 8-hour woodfired pig, $44

Oh em gee. Here it is. Here’s what I came for. The wood fired pork. The promise of crunchy tiles of crackling skin and the tender meat rippled with creamy white fat, was torturing me for a full six months after I made the reservation.

Porteno, Surry Hills

I confess, I was a little sad to have to share. Luckily for me, after the last crunch of the crackle, we could set to work nibbling on the roasted ribs, which had been thoughtfully presented with the rest of the meat :)

Porteno, Surry Hills

Tira de Asado, O’Connor grass fed Angus beef short ribs, $30

Short ribs are a favourite cut of mine – something I order whenever I can, especially at Korean barbecue joints. I love the short ribs for their rich beefy flavour, something which can be lacking in other favoured cuts like fillet and sirloin. 

Porteño’s short ribs certainly delivered on flavour – it was definitely enhanced by the smoke of the wood-burning grill. But unfortunately we all found this a little tough, making it difficult to enjoy the fantastic flavour of the beef.

Porteno, Surry Hills

Repollitos de Brusela Frito, crispy fried Brussels sprouts with lentils and mint, $14

If you’re a vegetarian, or heaven forbid, a vegan, then I’m sorry, but I don’t think Porteño is the restaurant for you.

Unless of course, you order these incredible Brussels sprouts – one of the most delicious incarnations of this vegetable I’ve ever had the pleasure of enjoying.

This much hated Brassica is transformed at Porteño – deep fried until the leaves are crisp (amping their flavour up to 150%) and tossed with plump lentils and mint.

This dish knocks all other Brussels sprouts out of the park.

Porteno, Surry Hills

Polenta a la Tabla, polenta with Provolone cheese, $14

The Polenta a la Tabla is creamy and smooth. It almost seems light, but don’t let it fool you! The creaminess from the Provolone cheese makes this a decadent side dish, and its spiked with a generous drizzle of Chimichurri, which I hear is the usual accompaniment for this cheese in parts of South America.

Porteno, Surry Hills

Our dishes are quickly cleared and we begin to contemplate dessert while still ogling the roasted meats on offer…

Porteno, Surry Hills

Postre Chaja, South American style Pavlova, $14

My favourite from the desserts we tried was the Postre Chaja, a meringue topped dessert featuring layers of soft sponge cake, creamy custard, sweet mango, and a surprising salted peanut caramel.

It’s like no other Pavlova I’ve ever tried, but easily one of the best desserts I had in Sydney. Magnificent!

Porteno, Surry Hills

Piña Colada spider, pineapple soda and coconut-rum ice cream, $14

Neither J nor Craig could go past the Piña Colada spider, which reminded me very much of its namesake cocktail.

The frothy icecream layer was a blast from the past reminding me how much I used to love making lemonade and even orange (Fanta) spiders as a kid!

Porteno, Surry Hills

Leche Quemada, burnt milk custard with orange jam and chocolate ice cream, $14

Caroline went for the Leche Quemada, which featured a deeply caramelised custard over a tart orange jam (reminded me of marmalade). The creamy chocolate ice cream and the crunchy sugared popcorn added to the Jaffa effect of this dessert, satisfying the need for creamy chocolate and a sugary crunch.

Porteno, Surry Hills

As I rolled out of Porteño, I was a little sad to leave, knowing it would be some time before we could visit again. It was lovely to share such a memorable meal with our new friends.

Any future trips to Sydney will definitely mean a return to Porteño – but to secure a table, I’ll most definitely need a posse. Any takers? :P

Porteño on Urbanspoon

For the full menu and reservations, visit Porteño’s website

Read about our other food adventures in Sydney

Roasted pork belly for Chinese New Year

Roasted pork belly

Roasted pork belly

Roasted pork belly

My recipe was originally published on The Food Pornographer

For this recipe, I purchased two pieces of corn fed pork belly from Wing Hong Butcher in Northbridge that weighed about 4 kg (raw weight) in total.

Marinade

  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3 star anise
  • 8 cloves
  • half an onion
  • 4 sticks cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup gula melaka or brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup light soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup vinegar (I used some pear cider vinegar)
  • A splash of mushroom soy
  • 2 tb sugar

At least one day before you plan to eat the pork

Part one: marinade

  1. Blitz the onion and garlic in a food processor until pureed. Stir in sauces and sugars.
  2. Place the mixture in a shallow baking dish large enough to hold the pork. Add the whole spices.
  3. Pierce the pork all over the flesh side with a small knife to allow the flavours to penetrate. Place pork flesh side down into marinade. Try to avoid getting the marinade on the skin side.
  4. Allow to marinade for at least six to eight hours.

Roasted pork belly

Part two: slow cooking

  1. Preheat your oven to 160 degrees celsius.
  2. Remove the baking dish from the fridge, and cover well with foil.
  3. Do not uncover during cooking. Check after 45 minutes to ensure there’s plenty of liquid in the dish – add a little water if it’s looking dry.
  4. Bake for a total 90 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool.
  5. Place paper towel on top of the skin, weigh it down (I used two 2.5kg weights from J’s weights set over a baking tray!) and leave the pork in the fridge overnight.

Roasted pork belly

The day of cooking and feasting

Part three: roasting

  1. Remove the weights and paper towel, rub a little vegetable oil and salt into the skin.
  2. Allow the pork to come to closer to room temperature as you preheat the oven preheat to 250 degrees celsius.
  3. Place the pork on a rack in a baking tray, and cook it in the oven for approximately 40 minutes until the skin begins to crisp up. It should start to bubble. If you feel you need more time to achieve better skin, go ahead. Different ovens may need more or less time.
  4. Once you feel satisfied with crispness of the skin, turn the oven down to 160 degrees celsius and cook the pork for an additional 45 minutes.
  5. Rest the pork for an hour before serving. Slice it up using a sharp knife or cleaver and serve. Thank me later.

Carving the pork belly

I started chopping the pork using one of Mum’s knives before realising I would need something heftier… My brother stepped in a gave the cleaver a tone before I got back to work.

Roasted pork belly

Thanks to J for the photos – my hands were full :)

Spiedo-6

Dinner at Spiedo Bar and Restaurant, Westfield Sydney

All three of us were excited to be visiting Spiedo at Westfield Sydney.

One hatted Executive Chef, Alessandro Pavoni is behind the menu, which features regional specialties of Lombardy, one of Italy’s northern states. Lombardy is home of the Spiedo Bresciano, the spit roasted meaty colossus which the restaurant is named after, which also happens to be Alessandro’s favourite regional dish.

We also had another big reason to be so excited about visiting this particular restaurant, as our brother-in-law, JM, is one of the owners of Spiedo. After hearing about it’s progress since opening, and about the amazing meal my older sister CW (visit her blog) enjoyed on her recent visit to Sydney, I was really keen to check it out.

We started off with drinks at the bar – an Italian beer for J, and something non-alcoholic for TFP. In typical fashion, I have completely forgotten which wine I drank. Suffice to say, it was lovely.

One of my personal highlights was watching the staff in action while we enjoyed our drinks. Spiedo features an open kitchen, which offers diners a closer look at the inner workings of the team.

I loved watching as one of the chefs prepared a Spiedo Bresciano – a spit-roasted combination of quail, pork scotch fillet, duck leg and pork ribs.

All the kitchen watching was proving to be excruciating! When our Sydney Sis joined us, it was time to get started. We asked brother-in-law JM to suggest some dishes for us to share. Besides the namesake Spiedo Bresciano, we were also keen to try his favourites from the menu.

We started with a selection of fresh bread, which are baked daily in Spiedo’s kitchen. JM told me he often starts his day at the restaurant with a slice of their bread, hot out of the oven.

This soft, golden foccacia studded with sweet cherry tomatoes was my favourite.

Sciatt’, $8

First to arrive was the Sciatt’, chunks of Fontina cheese coated in a buckwheat and grappa tempura served over radicchio.

I loved the contrast of the crunchy tempura with the oozy, stringy texture of the cheese. The green dipping sauce served alongside had a great kick from the fresh herbs – with a slightly mustardy finish, which I think came from rocket in the sauce. The flavour contrasted so well with the mild creamy flavour of the Fontina.

Baccala e Merluzzo d’acqua dolce, cannellini, spinaci novelli, $20

JM said one of the dishes we had to try was the Baccala e Merluzzo d’acqua dolce with cannellini and spinach. A large hunk of poached Murray cod sat over a creamy baccala puree (salted cod) with cannellini beans and sautéed spinach. The strong flavour of the baccala puree was perfectly complemented by the Murray cod, which had been seasoned simply. I think this was important as it meant the baccala puree was actually quite easy to eat, and not nearly as strong as I’ve had in the past.

Battuta di manzo, crema di tuorlo d’uovo, farro, crescione, bagoss, $20

I was really keen to try the Beef Battuta, Lombardy’s answer to Steak Tartare. The finely chopped beef was sprinkled with crispy spelt grains and served with a drizzle of creamy egg yolk, fresh watercress and shavings of Bagoss cheese.

The texture of the raw beef was much more to my preference than other tartare’s I have tried – the morsels of beef were a pleasure to eat as they were cut to a brunoise size, rather than ground/minced. The crispy spelt added a textural element, and also a subtle nuttiness.

Casoncelli alla Bresciana, $24 (entree) / $31 (main)

There were two past dishes which JM said we couldn’t go past – the Casoncelli alla Bresciana, and the Bigoli, gamberi di fiume e piselli.

Bigoli, gamberi di fiume e piselli, $24 (entree) / $31 (main)

Bigoli is the variety of wholemeal pasta used for this dish, a thick, tubular pasta, which is a little similar to bucatini (but thicker). The sauce used in this dish was enriched with shellfish stock, giving it a rich, sweet flavour. The chunks of yabby were tender and sweet, and went really well with the fresh peas.

My favourite of the two was definitely the Casoncelli alla Bresciana – pillowy half moons filled with a flaboursome veal and pork mix, drizzled with burnt butter, and sprinkled with crispy pancetta and sage. I love burnt butter. It makes everything so moreish. I was almost disappointed to have to share this. Luckily, there was still more to come!

Risotto alla Milanese, guancia di manzo brasata, $24 (entree) / $35 (main)

JM told us the next dish we were having, Risotto alla Milanese with red wine braised beef
cheek, was only supposed to be on the winter menu. But it’s been so popular that they haven’t taken it off the menu. Sydney Sis said that this dish was one of her favourites.

I have to agree – the buttery soft beef cheeks were amazing. After a long braise, the beef also developed a beautifully savoury umami-ness, which Sydney Sis and I agreed tasted a lot like Marmite! So tender you could eat it with a spoon, the beef cheeks were perfectly paired with the creamy saffron risotto. Definitely a stand out dish for me.

Spiedo Bresciano con polenta, $35

We couldn’t go to Spiedo without trying the dish it was named after! 

Meet the Spiedo Bresciano, a slow spit-roasted combination of pork ribs, duck, pork scotch fillet and quail, served with a creamy polenta. The dish was drizzled with burnt butter and crispy sage. 

The meats were beautifully tender, the result after being spit-roasted for five and a half hours, and I really enjoyed the combination of meats (I’ve enjoyed them all separately, but never together).

Who knew that two kinds of pork, duck and quail could go together in such a delicious combination? 

Roasted pumpkin with honey and hazelnuts, $9

Rocket with parmesan, $9

We also had a fresh rocket and parmesan salad, to go with the rich meaty Spiedo, helping me satisfy my necessary ‘veggie quota’. We also shared a dish of roasted pumpkin, tossed in a mix of honey and butter, served with roasted hazelnuts. J was pleasantly surprised by the pumpkin – a vegetable he doesn’t usually enjoy, which was completely transformed by the honey, butter, hazelnut combination. I think he’s still hanging out for me to try this one at home :)

Spiedo dessert plate, $18

Our inability to decide on which desserts we each wanted meant that there was really only one sensible option. The Spiedo dessert plate. From left to right (above), Amedei chocolate barbajada with milk gelato, Spiedo Tiramisu, strawberry gelato.

The chocolate barbajada was a beautifully creamy, softly set dessert, which would be a good choice for chocoholics. 

My favourite of the lot was definitely the Spiedo Tiramisu, an updated take on this well known Italian classic. Spiedo’s deconstructed version features a light sponge cake, whipped marscapone cream and a sprinkling of a sandy-textured chocolate crumb. Individually, each of the components was delicious – combined, outstanding. The chocolatey crumbs were a particular favourite – reminding me a lot of milo (eaten off a teaspoon!)

TFP declared the strawberry gelato one of the best she’s tried – it was bursting with fruity strawberry flavour.

Three scoops of gelato, clockwise from left, milk, nutella and peanut butter, $14

Spiedo make all of their own gelato, and they’re definitely worth a try if you’re in the mood for something light after your meal. Milk is JM’s favourite flavour, the most subtle of the bunch – perfect for showcasing the smooth texture of their gelato. I really loved the creamy peanut butter (love anything peanut butter flavoured!) variety – it would make a killer ice cream sandwich, in my opinion! My suggestion? Peanut butter gelato sandwiched between two chocolate sable biscuits, sprinkled with flakes of sea salt. Mmmm. Add some of the nutella flavoured gelato, and you’d have something truly magnificent. :)

Before we wrapped up our evening, J was keen to sample some of the Grappa options available from the cart. Besides a more classic version, he also tried a blueberry Grappa, which was interesting – the taste I tried was syrupy and sweet, reminding me a little of Spanish Pedro Ximenez.

It was a fantastic meal – the efforts of Chef Fulvio and his team were delicious, and very memorable. The staff at Spiedo are very knowledgeable and offer professional, efficient service, and were all happy to answer questions from the Lombardian food-newbs at our table. 

It was great to have the opportunity to enjoy the food of Lombardy, a departure from the usual southern-style Italian cooking that’s become ubiquitous throughout Australia. 

Thanks Spiedo, I’m very happy to have finally visited! I hope to see you again soon :)

Note
As I mentioned earlier in this post, my brother-in-law JM is one of the owners of Spiedo Restaurant and Bar. This post reflects my personal views and honest opinions based on my visit to the restaurant. If there was any aspect of the food or service which I disliked, I would have certainly pointed it out.

Spiedo Restaurant and Bar on Urbanspoon

Hey Juji, don’t you live in Perth? What’s with all the Sydney posts?

My sister TFP, my fiance J and I recently went on a ten day holiday to Sydney. Food was high on our agenda, and we visited lots of great places.
I’ll be posting the highlights from each day, so stay tuned!

Read about our other food adventures in Sydney

Homemade Barbecue Sauce

 

The perfect condiment to go with my 14-hour pulled pork, in true Southern-style, was a homemade barbecue sauce. I decided to go with my gut, by adding my favourite herbs and spices with a generous hand, and perfecting the sweet-sour-salty balance using my favourite Spanish sherry vinegar for tartness, and black strap molasses for the perfect sweet bronzed colour.

Juji’s barbecue sauce

  • 1 bottle passata (Italian tomato puree)
  • 1/4 cup black strap molasses
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup verjuice
  • 1/4 cup sherry vinegar
  • 2 – 3 crushed garlic cloves
  • 2 large onions, chopped roughly
  • 2 tb smoked paprika
  • 2 tb sweet paprika
  • 2 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • salt and pepper (to taste, add at the end)
  • 1 tsp summer savoury
  • large pinch cumin
  • large pinch allspice (powdered pimento berry, not mixed spice!
Method
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large stock pot.
  2. Add approx 2 litres water.
  3. Bring to boil, and stir all ingredients well (breaking up any spice lumps)
  4. Turn down the heat to medium low, and let the pot simmer for about an hour.
  5. Keep checking it frequently and stir, to ensure there’s no burning.
  6. After an hour, remove from heat, allow to cool for about 15 minutes, then blend using a stick (immersion) blender. This should thicken the sauce considerably.
  7. Return to a medium high heat. Continue simmering until you’re happy with the thickness of the sauce.
  8. Check the seasoning – you’ll need to add salt, pepper and possibly some extra sugar and vinegar at this stage.
  9. Remove from heat, allow to cool.
  10. Pour into sterilised bottles and store in the fridge until ready to use. Enjoy on your oh-so tender pulled pork, homemade burgers, or on anything that takes your fancy. Actually, I reckon it would make a wicked glaze for meatloaf. Good thinking, me!
Barbecue sauce over pulled pork in a soft white bun. Perfection.
Want to try making my 14-hour pulled pork to go with your fantastic Homemade Barbecue Sauce? Read my blog post about making pulled pork.
Photos courtesy of TFP!

 

Hawkers-Cuisine-5

Hawker’s Cuisine, Northbridge


Hawker’s Cuisine is a gem of a place, hidden in the alleyway behind The Shanghai Shed (officially called The Old Shanghai Food Court) in Northbridge. It’s not far from Perth’s favourite destination for all night eats – Billy Lee’s.

I imagine there must be lots of people around who haven’t heard of it, even though it’s been around for a number of years.


Step inside, and you’ll be greeted by a glass-fronted chiller, filled with fresh fish, individually wrapped soft-shelled crabs, and large banana prawns.

Business is bustling. The waitstaff are quick on their feet, ferrying hot plates to waiting tables, and clearing away dishes from groaning diners.


I personally love the bright orange walls and the fruity decorations hanging from the ceiling.

TFP, Jac, J and I arrived on a busy Saturday night. After quick deliberation, we settled on some dishes – a mix of old favourites and things we’d never tried before. It’s been at least a couple of years since I last ate at Hawker’s, so I was very keen to sample some of the dishes I loved so much the first time around.

The drinks menu at Hawker’s includes all the Malaysian and Singaporean favourites, from iced tea to Horlicks. We went with Iced Lychee (TFP), Iced Lemon Tea (Jac), Iced Longan (J) and Iced Teh (me).

In my previous post, a visit to Mak’s Place for Malaysia Kitchen Summit, I mentioned my love of super-strong Teh. This one from Hawker’s was a cracker – perfectly brewed to a deep brown and sweetened with the addition of condensed milk.

One of my personal favourites is the hotplate tofu. Though I’m not sure if it’s strictly Malaysian, this popular dish seems to appear on the menus of a number of Chinese-Malaysian restaurants around town.

Soft, pillowy pieces of Japanese egg tofu are lightly floured and deep fried, placed over a hotplate-fried egg and covered in a thick sauce flecked with pork mince.

This was the dish that changed my mind about tofu. Sure, I wouldn’t call myself a fan by any means, but we’ve come to an arrangement now. If served like this, then we definitely get along. It’s perfect served over hot steaming rice which soaks up the flavoursome sauce perfectly.

Top row: Marmite Chicken, bottom row: Salted Egg Yolk Soft-Shell Crab

Marmite Chicken is a favourite in Singapore and Malaysia, featuring – you guessed it, Marmite! In this dish, the addition of Marmite enhances the sticky, savoury, salty and sweet sauce. The chicken pieces, which had been coated in a light batter and deep fried, were tender and juicy despite the two-step cooking process. A triumph for chicken fans!

As a kid, I used to regard Salted (duck) egg yolks as a total food fail. Inserted into my favourite Moon Cakes, they created a clash of sweet and savoury that my ten-year-old tastebuds could not handle. The slightly sandy, usually crumbly texture of the yolks was also weird. Who wants a dry yolk? Not I, sir.


Now, almost 15 years later, the presence of salted egg yolk dusting crunchy deep fried crab is a total delight. The golden crumbs which coat each piece only add to the deliciousness. They’re really only delicately salted – most of the salt which the eggs are ‘cured’ in seeps into the egg white, leaving the yolk with a hint of salty tang.

The yolk which the fried soft-shelled crab was tossed in was both pretty and delicious to eat, adding (more) richness to the dish. These soft-shelled crabs were lovely – nicely tender and meaty.

In the interests of eating a more balanced meal, we also ordered the stir-fried vegetables of the day with garlic. Saturday’s offering included crunchy kai lan, sweet bok choy and tender choy sum. Even the stringy-vegetable fearing Jac and J were able to eat this, with only a few pieces rejected on the grounds of being a little too stringy. J remarked that it was definitely the generous addition of garlic which helped him enjoy the greens.

The fresh leaves and crunchy stalks had been helpfully sliced into perfect bite sized pieces; the ideal when wielding chopsticks.

To top things off, we had also ordered the Sarawak Pork. I’ve never visited East Malaysia (where the state of Sarawak is located) and I’ve never heard of this dish before.

Strips of poached pork belly in a sweet soy-based sauce were swaddled by fried firm tofu and perfectly cooked hard boiled eggs. The sauce was flavoured with star anise, cloves and cinnamon.

It reminded me very much of my Grandma’s favourite one-pot dish, pork and chicken in soy sauce. She used to cook it for the family most often on a Saturday night, a dish she could cook earlier in the day and serve for dinner, usually with hard boiled eggs, dried bean curd sheets (foo chok) and dried Shiitake mushrooms. It was nice to be reminded of it! :)

Jac found the pork too fatty for her liking. The meat was rippled with fat, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. I love the combination of the spices used in the sauce – they really complement meat well.

Ice Kacang is a technicolour shaved ice confection, usually eaten as a snack or dessert. Kids love it – I know I did, and it’s obvious why. Covered in sweet rose syrup and usually evaporated milk, the shaved ice sits over a mound of black grass jelly, creamed corn, attap chee (palm seeds soaked in syrup), and mashed sweetened red beans.

Hawker’s serve a slightly different version to my old favourite, instead including red beans, creamed corn, canned lychees, jelly bits and black grass jelly, with the ice well covered in rose syrup and coconut milk.

You’ve got to eat it fast. We decided to share – TFP speedily dished out our portions into smaller bowls. As you can see from the photo above, it really is eat or you’ll miss it, as your once beautiful snowy pile of ice and syrup turns into slush.

I was pleased to find a good mix of classic Malaysian and Singaporean favourites on the Hawker’s menu. From drinks to mains, there’s plenty of things on the menu to satisfy the purists and Malaysian food newbies alike.

I’m so glad that the food is just as good as I remembered at Hawker’s Cuisine. I’ll try not to let two-years come between me and the next visit!

Hawker's Cuisine on Urbanspoon

Open for dinner Tuesday to Sunday

Juji Chews dined at Hawker’s Cuisine as a guest of Malaysia Kitchen.

If you enjoyed my post, please visit Malaysia Kitchen Blogger Summit and vote by clicking like!

How to make pulled pork at home


This recipe was adapted from Kevin and Amanda’s Perfect Pulled Pork. It really was a perfect recipe which didn’t need any tweaking, but as I already had a jar full of home made dry rub in my pantry, the recipe has been slightly adapted to reflect that.

This recipe needs approximately 10 – 14 hours cooking time.

Ingredients

For this recipe, you’ll need a piece pork shoulder (each piece in the photo above was between 3 and 4 kilograms).

I used a boneless piece – it came rolled with the skin on. You’ll need to remove the twine and remove the skin. Alternatively, buy a shoulder at a butcher, and they can help you!

Dry rub
  • 1 tb ground cumin
  • 1 tb dried oregano
  • 1/2 tb dried thyme
  • 2 tb garlic powder
  • 2 tb onion powder or flakes
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tb cayenne pepper
  • 2 tb salt
  • 1 tb ground pepper
  • 3 tb paprika
  • 1 tb smoked paprika
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

Method

  1. Mix the dry rub ingredients together in an air tight container. You can make this mix ahead of time, or even use it for ribs.
  2. Set aside.
You will need to start brining the pork at least a day ahead of serving.

Brining solution
  • 1/3 cup salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1.5 l cold water
  • Bay leaves (about six)
  • 1 tb dry rub
  • 1 large ziploc freezer bag
Method
  1. In a large measuring jug or large saucepan, dissolve the sugar and salt into the water.
  2. Stir in dry rub and add bay leaves.
  3. Place pork shoulder into large ziploc bag, and pour in brine solution.
  4. Seal bag, and place it into a large roasting pan (just in case of any leaks) and place in the fridge for 10 – 12 hours.
If you’re serving your pork for lunch as I did, cooking is best done overnight. I started my cooking at about 8.30pm, about an hour or two before I went to bed.

Cooking it
Note: The recipe I used as a base for the method I followed suggested using a in-oven meat thermometer (the kind that has a probe which stays in the meat until done). I decided to go a little crazy and risk it. It turned out fine – just don’t be tempted to turn up the oven!
  1. Preheat oven to 100 degrees celsius.
  2. Drain your pork, and place in a large roasting pan.
  3. Pat dry with some paper towel.
  4. Rub generously with the dry rub mix.
  5. Place shoulder in the oven on the middle rack. Shut the door and walk away.
  6. Set your alarm for 12 hours.
  7. Place a tea towel under your oven door (if you can), just in case of any condensation. (I learned this the hard way)
  8. The next morning, turn off the oven.
  9. Take out the tray (watch the juices!) and cover the meat loosely with foil.
    Your kitchen now smells amazing, and I’m pretty certain that toast or cereal you were going to have now pales in comparison.
    Return tray (and pork) to the oven, and allow to cool for a further two hours in the oven, with the door slightly ajar.

To serve

Your pork will be amazingly tender. You should be able to simply pull it apart into shreds using a couple of forks, or your hands. Serve on fresh white rolls with barbecue sauce. (The recipe for the barbecue sauce is coming soon!)

Engagement

In May, J and I got engaged.

We decided to celebrate with a small group of family and friends earlier this month. It was a great day – sunny weather made it’s first appearance for the month, shared with our nearest and dearest (well, those in Perth, anyway), with lots of food, fun and ball sports (for the kids). J and I had been prepping for about two days solid, but it definitely paid off in the end – as you’ll see below…

On the menu… 


14-hour pulled pork sandwiches with home made barbecue sauce


My honey-soy-garlic-everything chicken wings, German-style potato salad,
fresh garden salad and fresh bread rolls


My Mum’s famous wantans, fresh fruit,
chocolate macarons with peanut butter ganache
and red velvet cupcakes topped with cream cheese icing 

Photos courtesy of the family photographer, my sister, TFP. Instagram-ized via hack from Daniel Box.