Eating at home – July 2012

Now that Baby Matilda is actively crawling and learning to walk, looking after her is even more time-consuming. For those who think that being a stay-at-home-mom (SAHM) is enjoying a life of leisure, you’re sorely wrong! All I can say is you’ll never understand how exhausting it is to look after babies and toddlers until you’ve experienced it yourself.

Luncheon meat fried rice

And it’s even more tiring especially when one is in the last trimester of her second pregnancy. That’s why we’ve had to hire a foreign domestic helper. She’s been with us for nearly 2 weeks now. We’re really grateful that she’s kind, enthusiastic, and a great help to us. And now that there’s an extra pair of hands around, I’ve been able to resume cooking for the family.

Lunch is usually a quick and easy one-dish meal, like this luncheon meat fried rice.

Ingredients for luncheon meat fried rice

Here’s what I do:

  1. Saute luncheon meat cubes till browned and crisp. No need to add oil if using non-stick pan. The luncheon meat will release its own fats. Remove from pan.
  2. In the same pan and using residual luncheon meat fats (OMG, yes so sinful!), saute diced carrot, minced garlic and shallot till soft. Remove from pan.
  3. Beat eggs and season with a little soy sauce.
  4. Add more oil to the pan, sufficient for frying eggs and rice.
  5. Heat oil till it starts to smoke.
  6. Add eggs. When it starts to set, scramble the eggs.
  7. Quickly add the rice to the half-cooked eggs. Vigorously mix rice into eggs, breaking up any rice lumps with spatula. Season with salt and pepper (optional).
  8. Add luncheon meat and carrot. Mix evenly.
  9. Taste and add more seasoning if necessary.
  10. Turn off heat. Add spring onion and toss to mix evenly.
  11. Serve and eat immediately!

Weekday dinner is often a typical Singaporean Chinese homestyle meal, ie. meat/seafood/veggie dishes, soup, and rice. I usually prepare 2 dishes + 1 soup, or 3 dishes if no soup.

Tofu with minced pork & mushroom in oyster sauce

We never tire of this dish in our household. Very yummy with rice!

Stir-fried baby Romaine lettuce with sliced fish cake

Green veggies is always a must on the dinner table. Romaine lettuce is quick to prepare and fast to cook. I happened to have some fish cake, so threw them in with the leaves.

Sweet and sour pork

Sweet and sour pork — another classic dish that’s a crowd favorite!

Shitake balls and egg drop soup

For soups, we alternate between long-simmered soups and quick ones like this egg drop soup with shitake fish balls. The shitake balls can easily be substituted with any other kind of protein, eg. pork balls, sotong balls, sliced meat, prawns, etc.

Ingredients for stewed cucumber

This is something I haven’t cooked for a long time – stewed cucumber with prawn. Yes, cucumber doesn’t have to be eaten only in its raw state! This is actually my mom’s recipe.

Stewed cucumber with prawn

The cucumber wedges are cooked till soft with a mild bite. Prawns add much sweetness to the dish.

Crispy luncheon meat slices!

Crisp pan-fried luncheon meat slices are always eagerly welcomed at our dinner table!

Made in Singapore - Golden Bridge canned luncheon meat. Image from Golden Bridge website.

Our current favorite brand is Golden Bridge canned luncheon meat, made in Singapore. We like it cos of its robust flavor and great taste.

Onion & bell pepper omelette

Using up leftover onion and bell pepper to make a simple omelette, so that nothing goes to waste. Together with luncheon meat and stewed cucumber, we have another simple but tasty homecooked meal!

Blueberry muffins

Yes, I baked these yummy looking blueberry muffins. But please don’t ask me for the recipe, because the ingredients came from a box! Betty Crocker muffin premix, to be precise! Heh!

Tried the premix out of curiosity. But to my credit, I did add a punnet of fresh blueberries (canned blueberries are included in the box). Still, I found the muffins too sweet for my liking.

Cooking for my family really gives me a great sense of satisfaction, because I know that I’m feeding my loved ones wholesome, balanced, and hygienically prepared food.

That’s why I’m a most willing participant for fellow blogger Daniel Ang’s #CookForFamily initiative. On Monday, 6th August 2012, together with more than 100 fellow Singapore food bloggers, I’ll update with a #CookForFamily blog post.

You can also follow me on Twitter @aromacookery or Instagram @aromacookery.