Chili Prawns (Sambal Goreng Udang)

My tomatoes are finally turning red! They’re beautiful! Oh yeah.. a little stray, late blooming strawberry got in there ūüôā

Photo Aug 08, 8 46 48 PM

So what do I do with all these tomatoes? The cherry tomatoes are sweet, delicious and healthy snacks, though I still can’t figure out how to get my daughter to eat them. The beefy tomatoes are sweet too. I usually cut them up and mix them in my salad or sneak them into my daughter’s omelette, but since I have a few of them, a couple went into my dinner this week: Chili Prawns.

Now.. this recipe is something I made up. The authentic recipe involves lemongrass, shrimp paste, and tamarind juice, I think. I like easy and fast to cook recipes and this recipe is both of those.


  • 1 lb large white shrimps, shelled and deveined
  • 1 package firm tofu, sliced into short strips
  • 2 medium tomatoes. roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 Thai chili peppers, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoon sweet soy sauce, or to taste
  • sugar to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 tablespoons oilPhoto Aug 13, 7 23 59 PMPhoto Aug 13, 7 28 55 PMPhoto Aug 13, 7 43 08 PM


  • In a bowl, mix 1 clove of the finely chopped garlic and 2 teaspoons soy sauce with the shrimps. Set aside.
  • Optional: Deep fry the tofu strips and set aside. You don’t have to deep fry them, which is probably healthier but I like them deep fried better. You can also get creative and use fried/baked tempeh in this recipe. I used tofu because I bought a box of 4 from Costco so this is one of the ways I’m using them.
    Photo Aug 13, 7 54 57 PM (1)
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a wok. When shimmering, add the shrimps to flash fry them. Remove from wok and set aside. This is also an optional step but I like the brown color of the sear on the shrimps.
    Photo Aug 13, 7 55 15 PM
  • In the same wok, heat 2 tablespoons of oil. Add garlic and the Thai peppers. If you’re cooking for kids like I am, I recommend using no more than 1 Thai pepper. If you and your kids can tolerate spicy food, then add as many as you want. Add tomatoes and simmer for a few minutes to break down the tomatoes.
    Photo Aug 13, 7 52 07 PM
    Mash the big chunks with your spatula. This is what you’ll end up with.
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  • Add your seasonings to taste: sweet soy sauce, sugar, salt and pepper. Then add the shrimps and tofu, and coat them completely with sauce.
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    Photo Aug 13, 8 00 34 PM
  • If you didn’t pre-cook your shrimps or deep fry your tofu, don’t add them all at once. Add the shrimps first and let them cook for a few minutes, then add the tofu and cook again for a few minutes. Remove and serve.

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I like to eat this shrimp dish over rice. So good! Hope you’ll like it too!

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Garlic Roast Crab

If you live in the San Francisco Bay Area and love crabs, you’re probably familiar with the An Family restaurants: Thanh Long and Crustaceans. My family usually makes Thanh Long one of their dinner stops when they’re visiting and I don’t blame them. They make the best¬†Garlic Roast Crab. It’s a whole Dungeness crab, roasted to perfection in buttery garlic sauce.

It’s a bit of a trek for me to go to either restaurants so I usually¬†go only¬†when I have out of town guests. Since that tends to happen only once a year, what am I to do other than make my own Garlic Roast Crab at home? ūüôā All you need is 5 ingredients and you can also taste that delicious,¬†firm and flaky crab meat any time you want.


  • 1 whole Dungeness crab, live preferred
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), more or less to your taste
  • 5 cloves garlic, more or less to your taste
  • salt and pepper, to taste

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  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • Boil a pot of water and put the crab in it when it has reached¬†a rolling boil. Cover and boil crab for 7-8¬†minutes. If you’re boiling multiple crabs at the same time, you may need to extend the time to 10 minutes.
  • While the¬†crab is cooking, finely chop the garlic. I suggest starting with 5 cloves. If you feel that’s too much garlic, then reduce the quantity. If you’re a garlic lover, feel free to add more.
    Photo Aug 06, 6 36 50 PM
  • In a large wok, melt the butter in medium low heat until the foam subsides. Add the chopped garlic and let the garlic flavor meld into the butter. Don’t let the garlic turn brown. Add salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste.
  • Remove the crab from the boiling water. Remove the shell and gill when it’s cooled enough to handle, then cut into quarters.
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    Photo Aug 06, 7 21 35 PM
  • Add the crab pieces to the garlic butter sauce and coat well.
  • Put the crab and the garlic butter sauce in a roasting pan. Cover the crab pieces using the crab shell then bake for 15 minutes. I use the shell as a cover to keep moisture in the crab meat while it’s roasting in the oven.
    Photo Aug 06, 7 32 40 PM
  • Remove from oven and serve.
    Photo Aug 06, 7 53 03 PM

I served my crab with garlic noodles which An Restaurant is famous for too. My garlic noodles use the same ingredients as the Garlic Roast Crab. Melt butter in medium low heat and add the chopped garlic as you did for the crab, but in smaller amounts. Add salt and fresh cracked pepper.While the garlic flavor is melding with the butter, boil your fresh egg noodles. Drain and add to the garlic butter. Mix well.
Photo Aug 06, 7 46 29 PM


Baked Fish in Foil

It’s been 3 1/2 years since my last post. My sincere apologies for the long drought.¬†There has been a lot of changes in my life, most of it attributed by our now 3 year old daughter.¬†One thing remained constant, and that is,¬†I’m still baking and cooking, though not as frequent as I used to.

Tonight’s post is what I made for dinner tonight. I needed something that can be made quickly since I came home late. Fish is always a good option to cook in a pinch.


  • 2 fish fillet – I used Basa fillet, but any fish fillet will do.
  • 4 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 4 tablespoons light soy sauce – I like using the Pearl River Seafood Soy Sauce.
    Photo Jun 22, 9 42 27 PM
  • Ginger, julienned or sliced
  • Scallions, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • Bell pepper, carrots – You can use any leftover vegetables you have in your fridge


  • Prepare foil packets on a baking sheet. Preheat oven to 375F.
  • Slice bell peppers and carrots and place on the prepared foil packets.
    Photo Jun 22, 7 17 56 PM
  • Rub 2 tablespoons of sesame oil on each fillet and place it on top of the vegetables.
  • Sprinkle the ginger and scallions over the fish.
    Photo Jun 22, 7 24 50 PM
  • Drizzle 2 tablespoons of the soy sauce over the fish. Don’t be tempted to add more even though it may look like you didn’t add enough and it looks dry. The fish will release liquid during baking.
    Photo Jun 22, 7 25 49 PM
  • Next, enclose the fish in the foil. Bring the long edges together and fold to seal¬†so it won’t release during baking. Fold the short edges up and seal. Ensure that any liquid released during baking won’t be able to escape. Now you’re ready to bake them!
    Photo Jun 22, 7 27 18 PM
  • Place in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and unwrap the foil.
    Photo Jun 22, 7 57 28 PM

Here’s a close-up of the fish. It came out juicy and flaky. Enjoy!Photo Jun 22, 8 11 41 PM