What do I cook today? Quick & Easy fried rice

This morning, even before I got out of bed, this was the first question that came to mind.

[tweetthis display_mode=”box”]What do I cook today?[/tweetthis]

Hundreds of housewives the world over face this problem. Actually it is not only housewives who face this question but students and bachelors and even cooks who have to cook for a family that is fussy about eating often spend hours trying to think of what to cook.

If you are like me and like to recycle food  and make yesterday’s food into today’s feast, you’d go straight to the refrigerator look around for inspiration.

Sadly, there weren’t any left overs . While I was thrilled with that because it meant that  yesterday’s meals were a success, I still hadn’t found the answer to what do I cook today?

I racked my brains and figured that [tweetthis display_mode=”box”]the fastest and best thing to make when in a bind is Fried Rice.[/tweetthis] I fished around in the vegetable bin and found some French beans, Carrot and Pak choy which I chopped into tiny pieces.

In my freezer I found two chicken sausages which I sliced very finely.

Then, I put some oil to heat in a wok and minced 2 cloves of garlic and a 1/2 ” piece of ginger, finely sliced 1/2 a medium sized onion and voila.

Fried Rice

To make this easy-peasy chicken fried rice, here’s what you have to do

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons cooking oil in a wok .
  2. Add the garlic and ginger, stir a bit and when the garlic begins to turn colour add the sliced chicken sausage ( you could also use slivers of chicken), finely sliced onion and 1 teaspoon of Keya Chinese Seasoning.
  3. Toss in the remaining vegetables except the pak choy leaves and give it a good stir.
  4. Sprinkle some salt and then add cooked rice.
  5. Generously put in some light soya sauce, the pak choy leaves and stir.
  6. Take off heat and serve hot.

Now isn’t this a quick way to answer your question “What do I cook today?”

Wok a slow Express

The newest kid on the block ,WOK EXPRESS’s  latest outlet at Chinoy Mansion, is just  a hop skip and a jump away from home. Our dinner guest from Chennai pointed out the restaurant as we were returning from a terribly disappointing dinner at China Garden Saturday night and said that WOK EXPRESS was a great concept one where you could order your customised Chinese online and which promised to home deliver. Now Home Delivery is a great hook for Mumbaikars who value time more than their money, so this afternoon I thought I’d give it a try.

I went online and registered myself and placed the order, a procedure that was simple enough. As soon as I placed the order, I looked at the time to see how they defined “immediate “which is what I wanted the delivery to be.

To my horror, an hour later I was still waiting for it. I finally called and was surprised that instead of sorting out the problem ASAP,  there was a needless exchange of calls back  and forth, just trying to verify whether or not I had placed the order. A more sensible person would have cancelled but not me : I hotfooted it  down to the outlet myself as it was getting on to an hour and a half since I received the order confirmation from WOK EXPRESS’s on line service.

So it turns out that there was a major glitch in the system so the outlet had not received the order. But when I went to the outlet the order was processed within minutes. I must say the management was sufficiently apologetic and possibly new ventures are prone to teething troubles so after a peace offering   of a complimentary strawberry bubble tea (Rs 70)  by the manager Shankar Koli , I placed my order yet again.

I now pronounce my verdict

1 medium box of chicken flat wheat  noodles with spring onion mushroom and pak choi with Kung pao sauce – Quantity was decent but the sauce was decidedly black. I always thought that Kung Pao was much lighter. Slightly more vinegar than I liked but there was a decent quantity of chicken and mushrooms.

The Teriyaki Chicken Shushi –

There were only 5 pieces in the box, no sauce though the wasabi and pickled ginger was generous enough. Once again I found the shushi too vinegary and sour .

The Strawberry Bubble Tea – I’m not a fan of Bubble Tea but my young grandson loved it!

Affordability ? Pretty good value for money

Yay or Nay ?

I am a bit confused with this one – My experience of the delivery service was HORRIBLE but once there, it was pretty ok. I was not too impressed with the noodles but may be my choice of sauce and condiments was all wrong. I will have to try the dim sum and other noodles to decide whether I want to keep ordering from WOK EXPRESS.

If it’s Chinese food, it must be Royal China

 

Hubby dear was entertaining two business colleagues from mainland China so probably it made sense to go to Mainland China but having heard that for a fine dining experience one should go to Royal China, I decided to take the plunge and booked a table at Royal China.

For years actually, China Garden was undoubtedly the best Chinese in town – it was tasty, innovative and affordable yet exclusive. But ever since it became CG3 or whatever else it would like to be known as, the food and service, both sadly could do with a major overhaul. Several times I visited CG3 to be told that the Dim Sum steamer wasn’t working ergo no dim sums and at one time I was even served something I hadn’t asked for and told ” But it is tasty no, so why don’t you have it?” without so much as a hint of apology or remorse.

Since we didn’t want to spend a minor fortune and we wanted a Chinese meal in town, we really had no option but to go to Royal China.  And it turned out to be a good menu.For starters, the reservation was easy – no silly instructions about children and dress code.

For starters, the reservation was easy – no silly instructions about children and dress code.

Then what struck me was the iPad Menu

An innovative way of ordering food

Instead of asking the waiter what is nice and what isn’t ( Typically if you ask which is better the answer you get is both!) and avoiding the painful process of wondering what the dish looks like.

IMG_0591So we had a table reservation for 6 and at 7.30, we entered the restaurant 2 short. The entrance to this restaurant is so discreet, that you almost miss it – so keep a look out for the set of steps behind the Sterling Cinema ‘coz you can very well overshoot it. Once inside, we were shown to our table and presented with the iPad menu which thrilled our Chinese guests no end. ” Oh, just like in Shanghai,” said one of them who expertly began looking at the menu and typing in her preferences. The ordering took longer that we normally do because the ladies were excited about eating Chinese food after a week but after they made up their minds, the food came quickly enough.

Since Hubby dear is vegetarian he ordered Cabbage Spring rolls that had to be assembled on the table as a starter. The rolls were crisp, but we sent back the pile of cabbage leaves and filling to the kitchen and got them back ready to eat. For his main course, he ordered his famous Haka noodles and some assorted exotic vegetables.

As for us, we settled down to a clear chicken soup ( minus the bamboo shoots which weren’t available that day), and the main course of mixed vegetable fried rice, crisp fried lamb, pak Choy, kung pao prawn ( simply yum). For dessert, we ordered the standard lychees with ice cream but were given a special surprise of chocolate filled buns when Shavir the manager realised that we were his old customers from China Garden.

So all in all it was definitely a great meal and will now easily replace CG3 without the slightest hint of doubt.

Verdict – If you want a Five Star dining experience at a standalone and more reasonably priced restaurant then Royal China is the place for you.

 

Location :

ROYAL CHINA INDIA,
Victoria Terminus, Behind Sterling Cinema Building,
Hazarimal Somani Marg, Fort, Mumbai, India

Tel: 022 22072492

When Tex-Mex meets Chinese

Fans of the Carter Road  Loco Chino outlet will be glad to note that their favourite Tex -Mex and Chinese eatery has moved to SoBo. And SoBo diners will be happy to know that this new fast food joint will soon be offering home delivery, an option that is almost mandatory for those wanting to pick up a bite on this busy, busy road that often has its traffic lights shut, especially during peak traffic hours.

While walking down Kemp’s Corner the other day, I came across Loco Chino which had functioned as Buddha Belly  for a few moIMG_0414nths last year. Sadly the restaurant didn’t do well and downed shutters almost as soon as they were up, so   I was happy to learn that it has re-opened and even more happy to learn that they actually intend starting a home delivery soon. With the traffic what it is, sometimes it takes up to half an hour to just cross the road ( when the signals are turned off during peak hours) , so it is far better to order a home delivery than risk being killed yourself!

I stepped in to order some chicken dumplings which took all of 10-12 minutes to come to the table. They were pretty ok for the price (frankly Dev’s Momos further down the road towards Breach Candy is far better value for money) but Loco Chino seems a good dining option for those who want Tex -Mexican and  or Chinese.

 

The eatery has veg options too and serves up taco and burrito as per your choice – with just a 2-3 minute wait. With no liquor available it is a child friendly place that seats around 12-15 persons only. It is open from 11 am -12 pm and currently gets its dim sum from the Buddha Belly kitchen at Andheri .

Shop 1, 74-A, Ketty House, Gopalrao Deshmukh Marg,Peddar Road, Mumbai

A Fishy Meal in Putrajaya’s famous Seafood restaurant

Sharing my experiences of my allDuring my trip to Malaysia we made a day trip to Putrajaya on the way to our intented destination – Melaka.

Putrajaya is the administrative capital of Malaysia and is a completely new city – eco friendly and really green with numerous parks and water bodies. Being well planned and restricted largely to civil servants, it has none of the clutter and chaos that is associated with cities that grow organically.

Apart from the splendid architecture befitting a capital city, the city is famous for its sea food restaurant situated in the Botanical Gardens.

The only word to describe this restaurant is SPLENDID and the only word to describe the food AWESOME.

 

Set in the verdant splendour of a botanical garden alongside a peaceful lakeside, the Putrajaya Seafood resaurant is a delight to visit in the day as well as the night. With a variety of food available in Chinese style, it is an epicurean’s delight.

Sadly since most of my cotravellers were vegetarian, it was up to me to finish off the excellent Mushroom soup which was creamy and delicious, perfect for a cloudy day, the crisp fried prawn which were succulent and  fresh, the sweet and sour chicken cooked just right and the prawn fried rice –  flavourful and filling.  The portions were large, the ambiance soothing and calm and the service excellent.

But since I am not a cow with just one human stomach and the rest of the gang was not up to eating, the leftover food was served to the fish in the lake. I must say they were a happy lot and fought for all the leftovers!

So if you happen to be in KL , do drive up to Putrajaya for a wonderfully  restful and heart warming dining  experience.

Putrajaya Seafood Restaurant
Taman Botani Putrajaya,
Presint 1, 62000 Putrajaya.

Tel: 03-88891188

Business Hours:
Monday to Friday
11.30am – 2.30pm
6.00pm – 10.30pm

Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays
9.30am – 2.30 pm
6.00pm – 10.30pm

Website: www.ttrb.com.my