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eating, cooking and living

  • Recipe - Savoury

    Bo Bia – Vietnamese Spring Rolls with Chinese Sausage, Jicama and Egg

    Bo Bia – Vietnamese Spring Rolls with Chinese Sausage, Jicama and Egg

    Bo Bia is a lesser know variant of the famous Goi Cuon (Vietnamese Summer Roll). It is a similar concept but with different filling. I had never heard of this roll until I mistakenly bought some while I was backpacking through Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam). I thought I was ordering Goi Cuon from the street vendor but luckily got a bag of this. In my severely broken Vietnamese I asked the vendor for the ingredients. However, there was one ingredient that I did not understand. It wasn't until my arrival home and some rifling through cookbooks that I realised it was jicama (yam bean). This peculiar vegetable is best described as a cross between apple, radish and water chestnut. It can be eaten raw and is prized for its crisp, clean taste. It also remains crisp if cooked.…

  • Recipe - Savoury

    Canh Chua Tôm – Vietnamese Sour Soup with Prawn

    Canh Chua Tôm – Vietnamese Sour Soup with Prawn

    Herbs are a tricky ingredient. They can make or break a dish. Too little and the dish is bland and boring. Too much and it's like your eating the entire contents of your granny's medicine cabinet. It is with this reason that I absolutely refuse to buy my herbs from supermarkets. They are more than likely incubated in hothouses and can be fed with a host of unsavoury pesticides. They are often bland and twice the size that they should be. I want my herbs to be burgeoning in the full blaze of the sun and their roots soaked with rainwater. Therefore I know that the flavour that graces my dishes are what they intended to be... natural. Here in this refreshing soup from Vietnam, I made sure that the herbs used were grown in more natural conditions. It is…

  • Recipe - Baking

    Tropical Meringue Nests with Mango and Coconut

    Tropical Meringue Nests with Mango and Coconut

    The idea of whipping and cooking egg whites used to make me want to lie down in a dark room. They always seemed far too difficult and after a horrific attempt many years ago, my desire to ever work with them were wrapped up, boxed and placed on the never-again shelf. By chance, I stumbled upon a recipe for Swiss Meringue Buttercream by Whisk Kid and her step-by-step instructions were clear, precise and best of all, helpful. I successfully baked a Rainbow Cake using her famous recipe and I haven't looked back. Making these super delicious meringue nests were easy, far easier than baking a cake, with significantly fewer ingredients and labour. If you have a stand mixer you could almost make this recipe and paint your nails simultaneously. Tropical Meringue Nests with Mango and Coconut Makes approx 10 4…

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