AFC GRILLED : Chef Sean Connolly

An evening of good food.

Lap Cheong Watermelon Bites

An asian take on watermelon bites!

Baked Fish with Kiwi in Sweet and Sour Sauce

Add a twist to sweet and sour fish!

Semperit Pandan Cookies

Cute cookies for the festive season!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Chicken Curry with Bell Peppers


Capsicum, that's what is written on the label but I also know it by another name - bell pepper!

I've only ever seen red, yellow, orange and green ones in our local supermarkets and often wish they sold the purple, white and brown variety too. Just imagine throwing it all together to make a salad. I think it'd look fabulous.

Anyway, I picked green and red out for a curry dish I was making for dinner. I went for chicken curry with less gravy and a stronger flavour because I was pairing it with fresh greens.

This is the result. What do you think? Looks good? ...Tastes good!

Chicken Curry with Bell Peppers

This is the recipe, if you're keen to try.
- 350g chicken fillet (sliced into smaller pieces)
- 1 red bell pepper (sliced into long thin strips)
- 1 green bell pepper (sliced into long thin strips)
- 2 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 1 tbsp blended red chili
- 2 dried bay leaves
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp sweet soy sauce
- Pinch of salt and white pepper
- 3 tbsp evaporated milk
- 1 cup water
- Cooking oil
- 6 baby Romaine lettuce


1) To make curry paste, mix turmeric powder, garam masala and blended red chili together. Add a little water if it's too dry.

2) Heat oil in wok. Saute garlic.

3) Add curry paste. Fry until lightly browned.

4) Add chicken fillet pieces. Gently stir-fry to coat the chicken pieces. Then, add bell peppers and bay leaves. Mix well.

5) Add water and simmer covered for about 5 minutes.

6) Add milk. Cook uncovered for a further 5 minutes or more on high heat until the curry has reduced into a nice thick milky texture - not too watery, not too dry.

7) Serve on top of romaine lettuce.

1) The ingredients
2) Saute garlic and add curry paste
3) Add chicken, then bay leaves and bell peppers
4) Add water and simmer covered
5) Cook on high until water has reduced into a nice thick gravy - not too dry.

My Bowl of Chicken Curry with Bell Peppers

Can be eaten with rice, flatbreads or as is!


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Braised Chicken with Apples and Ginger

I've always enjoyed cooking with fruits because I love working with natural flavours.

This is a yummy gingery apple dish that I made the other day to go along with rice. I ditched the common soy sauce chicken for something different and it turned out very well.

I'm definitely making this again!

Braised Chicken with Apples and Ginger

And it is an easy recipe. Just a slow simmer to bring all the ingredients together. Taste-wise, light apple sweet and gingery. I seasoned it with a wee bit of salt and white pepper.


- 600g or half chicken (chopped)
- 2 apples, one red and one green (cut into cubes)
- 1 thumb ginger (sliced thinly)
- 1 clove garlic (chopped)
- 1 red chili (sliced)
- 2 cups water
- Salt and white pepper to taste
- Cooking oil
- 1 stalk spring onion (chopped) for garnishing

1) Heat oil in wok. Saute garlic and ginger.

2) Add apples. Give it a quick stir.

3) Add chicken. Stir lightly until browned a little.

4) Add chili, then water. Bring to a boil and simmer covered on low heat for 20 minutes or so, stirring once in between.

5) Taste and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Let it cook for a couple of minutes to round the flavours up. 

6) Serve garnished with chopped spring onions.

1) Saute garlic, ginger and apples.
2) Brown chicken.
3) Add chili.
4) Add water and simmer covered.

Braised Chicken with Apples and Ginger
garnished with chopped Spring Onions

Enjoy with rice!


Saturday, November 23, 2013

Reality Bites : Exclusive Preview (An Original AFC Production)


Eve blessed me with invites to the exclusive preview of Reality Bites, a reality show accounting the ups and downs of Malaysian celebrity chefs Johnny Fua and Sherson Lian as they manage the fine dining kitchen of Elegantology Gallery & Restaurant. It's a tough environment to work in. Elegantology is owned by esteemed fashion designer Beatrice Looi, setting the standards high.

Me with Chef Sherson Lian (Far left) and
Chef Johnny Fua (Far right)

Great Dinners Of The World Event 2012
Remember AFC's Great Dinners of the World? That's where I first knew of these chefs. I later met them at an event organised for fans.

Anyway, check out photos of my 20th November evening at the event (below).

A variety of delicious finger food was served. I was humoured the moment the waitress attempted to share the name of the dish with us. It was such a mouthful. I wondered at that moment if I should have brought a tape recorder along. I couldn't possibly remember any of it!

I miss the days when food were just simply labeled "sweet and sour sausage" instead of "sausage a l'orange seasoned with a pinch of fleur de sel and black peppe--eur " <-- I am totally making this up to illustrate a point. 

We were then introduced to citrusy Martell cocktails which tasted really good. The name was as challenging. I shall not mention it. Martell is a patron of Elegantology, lending more sophistication to what I already call a very high class restaurant.

I left the event learning a thing or two about presentation. The show? Watch it and judge for yourselves.

The Scene

Chef Johnny Fua (bottom left) / Chef Sherson Lian (middle right)

Reality Bites airs this 10th December on the Asian Food Channel (AFC). Who's as excited as I am? Oh, who am I kidding. My enthusiasm for cooking shows (any) is forevermore ~ looking forward to the drama!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Prawn Green Curry


This isn't authentically Thai so I've done away with the word from the name of the recipe ~ Thai Green Curry.

Prawn Green Curry

I am hooked on red chilies. The non-spicy kind, that is! It's in my shopping cart every marketing week.  Fresh red ingredients liven up any dish, don't you think - gravy in vibrant colour, that touch of liveliness in garnishing. I liken it to adding a ribbon onto my plate of yum.

Green chili is an undeniably underrated ingredient in my wok-king activities. I plonked a packet of fresh ones onto the supermarket pay counter the other day before I could wonder whether I really needed it.

I figured doing this often could cajole my mind into accepting that, "Hey, green chili isn't so meh after all".  

Oh, what can I say. It turned out to be a very exciting ingredient to have around and I am psyched to explore further.

This is my recipe for delightful, sweet-savoury curry.  It's lovely with rice and bread.   

- 16 medium prawns (cleaned, leave tail intact if you wish)
- 4 kaffir lime leaves
- 1½ tsp fish sauce
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- Pinch of white pepper
- 1 tbsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp shrimp paste (lightly toasted - in the oven or dry fried on pan)
- 1 cup coconut milk
- ½ cup water
- 3 tbsp cooking oil
- ½ red chili (sliced) and some fresh coriander for garnishing

Green Curry Paste ~ To blend:
- ¼ cup fresh coriander (roughly chopped)
- 5 green chilis (roughly chopped)
- 2 cloves garlic (roughly chopped)
- 1 large onion (roughly chopped)
- 1 stalk lemon grass (sliced thinly)
Blend all these ingredients together into a paste.
Use a bit of coconut milk to get things going if needed.

1) Ingredients to be blended into green curry paste (excluding lime leaf)
2) Roughly chopped and ready to be blended
3) Coconut milk
4) Green curry paste
5) Green curry paste, fish sauce, ground coriander, brown sugar, prawns, kaffir lime leaf


1) Heat oil in large pan. Add green curry paste, shrimp paste and ground coriander. Stir-fry to combine well, preferably until the liquid has reduced into a thick paste.

2) Add coconut milk, half the water, kaffir lime leaves, fish sauce, pepper and sugar. Mix well and simmer covered for five minutes or so  (at least until the gravy loses it's vibrant green and enough for all the flavours to come together).

3) Add prawns and remaining water. Stir lightly until it is cooked. (Add more water if you find the gravy a little too thick for your liking)

4) Serve garnished with fresh red chili and coriander.

1) Fry green curry paste, ground coriander and shrimp paste with oil
2) Add the coconut milk and kaffir lime leaf
3) Lastly, add the prawns
4) Stir lightly until prawns are cooked

Prawn Green Curry ~ Garnished with Red Chili and Coriander


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Cheesy Omelette


And then there are days I'd wake up hungrier than usual for no apparent reason. I'd be staring half-heartedly at the cereal box and chocolate malt drink.

Typical Malaysian breakfasts would flash across my mind - nasi lemak (coconut milk rice with spicy anchovies) , roti canai (a local flatbread served with curry), fried noodles and the sort!

I started dreaming about Eve's cheesy omelette. Pretty sure I was still undecided when it dawned on me that I was already whisking a couple of eggs. How did that happen....

Eve's version is made with a ton of yummy ingredients - onions, ham, mushrooms. I made something to satisfy the rumbling tummy that had growled me into submission.

Cheesy Omelette
This is what I had for breakfast in the end, a fuss-free cheesy omelette.


- Two eggs
- 1 stalk spring onion (chopped)
- 1 pc cheese slice (smokey bbq flavour)
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- Cooking oil

Cheesy Omelette In The Pan

1) Beat two eggs in a bowl with a pinch of salt and black pepper. Stir in chopped spring onions.

2) Heat oil in pan. Pour egg mixture into pan. Wait for the egg to solidify a little.

3) Place cheese in the center. Once it begins to melt, fold (not necessarily in half) and turn. Should be done in seconds. Lift and serve.

Note: Serve garnished with spring onions if you like.

Cheesy Spring Onion Omelette
How cheesy!


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Barley With Sweetened Condensed Milk


Barley, the dessert!

Barley with Sweetened Condensed Milk

I've a couple of tricks up my sleeves when it comes to barley.  Unless I'm boiling barley water for someone under the weather, I prefer not sweetening it with the likes of candied winter melon or rock sugar while cooking. Plain is the way to go. This gives me a lot of leeway to flavour it however I please, be it sweet dessert or savoury treat.

I'm sharing an easy recipe today. This is probably the quickest dessert I've ever made (if you already have cooked barley on hand) and it's great eaten anytime of the day. Oh, let me put it this way - I call this an "up-to-you" recipe.


- Cooked barley with a bit of barley water (while still hot/warm)
- Sweetened condensed milk
- Lemon zest

Left: Barley grains (to be rinsed properly and soaked for an hour)
Right: Boiled tender - takes about 40minutes


1) Scoop a few spoonfuls of cooked barley into a bowl or cup. Add some barley water.
2) Stir in sweetened condensed milk (to taste).
3) Serve with a pinch of lemon zest or chill in fridge, if you prefer having it cold.

Note: The portion, the thickness of the soup, warm or cold, the is entirely 'up to you'.

Barley with Sweetened Condensed Milk and a pinch of Lemon Zest



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