Rice, biryani style

If I had saffron water to drizzle over the rice after cooking, and if I had used cashew nuts instead of peanuts, this would be a more authentic biryani. Well, whatever “authentic” means considering that biryani is found in the cuisines of more than a dozen countries, including the Philippines, and none is exactly the same as another. But I didn’t have saffron and cashew nuts so I had to content myself with calling this dish a biryani-style rice. At any rate, a lot of the traditional spices that go into cooking biryani went into this dish.

Rice, biryani style

The idea and procedure I got from Malaysian cook Sherson Lian who hosts 5 Rencah 5 Rasa on Asian Food Channel. I liked the way he sauteed everything in a pan then transferred all the ingredients to the rice cooker. Modern and practical cook, I thought. That’s exactly how I did my arroz blanco and arroz amarillo — never mind purists screaming that you have to do it in a pot over burning wood or something. What the heck, eh? It is 2012, after all. »

Roti John

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When Speedy saw Bobby Chin making Roti John in an episode of Cafe Asia, he promised he'd make Roti John at home. And he did.A popular hawker food in Malaysia and Singapore, Roti John is a sandwich and omelet in one. Beef, eggs, chopped shallots … »

Sambal fried rice

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Sambal is a chili-based sauce. It is found in the cuisine of many Southeast Asian countries including Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines. To make sambal, chilis are crushed with other spices, sometimes with shrimps and fish, and ground to a … »

Hainanese chicken rice

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Last night, there was a replay of the No Reservations episode shot in Singapore and, suddenly, I missed Singapore. I love the vibrancy of that city-state -- the food stalls where the food is so good it seems silly to go to pricey restaurants, the … »