How To Turn Instant Noodles Into A Gourmet Meal

I have a confession to make. Despite my cooking-from-scratch-is-best mantra and occasional preaching about healthy eating, I’ve recently resumed a bad food addiction.

You’ve guessed it- Instant Noodles, aka instant ramen. Probably Japan’s most famous invention, along with MSG.

I had been so good. In fact, I hadn’t touched the stuff in years, until a recent holiday to China on a Silk Road tour (which I will blog about shortly). It was about five or six days into the tour, I had barely eaten the entire time thanks to a bout of diarrhoea and not liking the food served on the tour. And I was starving. A fellow tour member saw this and kindly gave me some cup noodles she had brought with her.

And in my semi-emancipated state, that steaming cup of instant noodles tasted divine. Soft, yet springy noodles in a MSG-laden broth — I got hooked, once again.

Since my return from the trip I’ve been stocking my pantry with instant noodles. I just can’t help myself. Unfortunately, while convenient and rather tasty, instant noodles are highly processed and hence not very good nutritionally. That said, there’s no reason why we can’t make a purse out of a sow’s ear. So, I’d like to show you how easy it is to take a simple bowl of instant ramen and turn it into a gourmet meal.
Continue reading How To Turn Instant Noodles Into A Gourmet Meal

Malay-style Okra in Rempah

As stated earlier, I’m a big fan of home-made rempah (spice paste) made in a mortar and pestle.

While it takes some effort to prepare, rempah is incredibly versatile, and is a staple in many Malay and Nyonya dishes found to South-East Asia. One of my favourite dishes is okra stir-fried in rempah, which is also easily found in Singapore’s many nasi padang (assorted meat & vegetable dishes) food stalls.

Also known as lady’s fingers, okra is a versatile vegetable that can either be stewed in a soup or curry, or stir-fried. When fried in rempah, the natural stickiness of the okra is absorbed by the rempah, allowing the diner to savour the texture and flavour of okra more easily.
Continue reading Malay-style Okra in Rempah