Quick Thai Fix


Growing up, I loved to compete with my siblings on just how much chili we could withstand. Everything from sambal belachan to chili padi, I’d gleefully chomp on just to prove I was the queen of spice. Those moments always ended with a certain high – when the numbing sensation reaches its peak and for an instant, I attained chili nirvana. With a forehead covered with beads of sweat, I would proudly declare myself the winner.

To this day, I still chase down that spicy sensation every chance I have. After several days of Asian stir fry vegetables and meat, I was craving for serious heat. Naturally, I turned to Thailand for my source. Thai food has such a dimensional flavour thanks to its multitude of spices. Their spice pastes are the cornerstone of many of my favourites, including Khao Soi noodles.

Using a red curry paste has a base, the dish is built on aromatics like shallots and ginger that elevates the gorgeous curry broth. This recipe I found is a quick shot at whipping up a delish meal in under an hour.

If you ask me, it’s perfect for busy days. The end result is a creamy bowl of robust goodness that is bound to warm your belly. Enjoy!


Thai Khao Soi Noodles 


4 ounces rice noodles
1-2 tablespoons coconut or vegetable oil
1 shallot finely diced
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, chopped or grated
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons Thai Red Curry Paste (store bought)
1/2 teaspoon turmeric (optional)
Pinch of cardamom (optional)
1 can coconut milk (200ml)
1 cup chicken broth (or use water and 1 chicken bouillon cube)
1 thinly sliced red bell pepper (optional: substitute with other vegetables as preferred)
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 1/2 tablespoons sugar, or alternative substitute
1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce (Sambal Olek)
8 oz. raw, peeled and deveined prawns (or pan-seared tofu cutes, thinly sliced raw or cooked chicken)
1 lime
Garnish with fresh basil or cilantro, bean sprouts, scallions, or thinly sliced red onions.
Notes: To bump up the flavourful coconut broth even more, add a 4 inch piece of lemongrass (smashed), a few slices of galangal or a couple of kaffir lime leaves (optional)


Place noodles in a shallow baking dish and boil enough to just cover them.

While water is boiling, prep the shallots, ginger, garlic, red bell pepper, and have the other ingredients ready by the stove.

In a medium pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add shallots and ginger Saute until fragrant and golden, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and red curry paste. Fry for 1-2 minutes.

Add the coconut milk, chicken broth and bring to a simmer while stirring. Once gently simmering, add the bell pepper, soy, fish sauce, sugar and chili garlic sauce.

Add the prawns and gently simmer until cooked. Give a generous squeeze of lime. Taste. add more lime or salt where necessary.

Drain the noodles. If serving the soup immediately, toss the noodles right into the pot and serve.
Alternatively, divide noodles into bowls and ladle soup over.

Garnish with fresh basil, bean sprouts, thinly sliced red onion and chopped scallions.

Notes: You can make the soup the day before and refrigerate it, keeping noodles separate (they will swell in the soup) and simply reheat.

Recipe from Feasting At Home.

Posted on 30th Mar 2018 in Curry, Noodles, Thai  |  Post a comment

Green domestic goddess in the making?


My ultra random food cravings make it impossible for me to stick to a specific diet. Some days it’s pork belly and other days, cacio e pepe (love love love carbs).

The two times that I tried, was only because of my desperate measure to lose weight (the flab glides on once you turn 30 mind you)! In 2014, it was a 5 day juice cleanse (it involved 7am hot yoga every morning too) and in 2015, I went bonkers attempting the terrifying 10-day Mastercleanse (a colon clearing ritual that consisted of sustaining on a very intriguing type of lemonade – lemon juice, maple syrup, cayenne pepper and apple cider vinegar).

Only lesson I learnt from those times is balance and moderation. Too much of anything is never any good. Even if it is a super food. Take rice for example. Nutritionists may tell you brown rice trumps white rice but then brown rice is supposedly arsenic too. But before you go back to white rice, you find out it is not any better because it has a high glycemic index (GI) and would increase your risk of diabetes.

Don’t even get me started on gluten. ‘Gluten-free’ is suddenly the way to go even if you do not have celiac disease. News flash everyone; a gluten-free diet does not mean you are healthier. You might be  saying no to many vitamins, minerals and fibre that are found in the whole grains you’re so busy avoiding. I say this only because I too, went through a brief phase, looking to eliminate gluten in my life. Of course I failed terribly because I love bread too damn much.

Food is a way of life, and more than anything else, the focus should be on whether you’re putting nourishing foods into your body. Call it clean eating, or healthy eating if you may, but it simply means preparing more food yourself. And though Daryl and I both have 9 to 5 jobs, we try our very best to cook more. Weekdays are more challenging, therefore we sometimes compensate by cooking more on the weekends. And we have been busy at it!

Last weekend, it was my turn to play chef. I pale in comparison to him, but I try my very best. I thought hard about what my menu was going to be. Decadent or wholesome? Mediterranean or Asian? It took me a week to finalise my dishes because two of my friends had dietary restrictions. One was a pescatarian and another, a lacto-vegetarian (in case you’re wondering, that means yes to milk and yoghurt but no to eggs, no to cheese with rennet and of course, meat and seafood). At the end of the day, my inner green domestic goddess revealed herself quite naturally despite the initial fretting of how I was to work within my limitation (because duh, I really do love my meats!) 😉


I just made the entire meal vegetarian, in order not to alienate my lovely friends.

Appetisers were sweet potato fries (hand-cut mind you), hummus (hand-soaked, hand-peeled, hand-made…. yes my hands were quite involved) and greek bruschetta.


Freshly boiled chickpeas is the way to go if you’re looking for that delicious thick creamy texture that’s reminiscent of the traditional Arabic style hummus. Which means, prep starts about a day earlier. The chickpeas have to be soaked overnight before boiling. For extra creaminess, throw in some bicarbonate soda in your soaking water. That allows the skin to separate easily. Hummus is basically a combination of boiled chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, garlic cloves, ground cumin, sumac, and olive oil. And you salt it to taste. Everything goes into the blender (but not before the ardous task of washing/peeling the skins off!).  You don’t really need a recipe with hummus because it’s that easy. But here’s a rough guide of the ratio I used: 500g dry chickpeas, 250g tahnini, juice of 2 lemons, 2 garlic cloves, chopped, a dash of ground cumin and sumac. Add however much olive oil you want. You need it to make the paste wet enough for the blender to whirr smoothly. 




Psst. The basil in the bruschetta was plucked from our very fragrant basil plant!

Our basil plant



The main course – Tofu mushroom summer noodles were a hit and you can see how much Tanvi (the lacto-vegetarian) loved it.

Dessert was a simple summer berry chocolate chia seed pudding.


Five dishes, and four happy friends later, I think I have unlocked a personal achievement. My inner Donna Hay has come out to play. And if you like to join me, drop me an email at thebakerwhocooks@gmail.com because I want to seriously start a supperclub of sorts. No more talking about it. It’s time to put my whisk, ladle, spatula ya-da, ya-da where my pot and pan is!

Posted on 13th May 2016 in chickpeas, chocolate, Noodles, sweet potato, vegetables, vegetarianism  |  Post a comment

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