Ham & Cheese Muffins

I have always been more of a sweet than savoury person when it comes to bakes. But this sounds like a real comforting breakfast to beat the Monday Blues. An additional plus point, it’s really quick and easy.

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Ham & Cheese Muffins
(adapted from Baking Taitai)

What you need (i doubled the recipe and made 15)
80g ham, diced (i used apple baked ham as it is less salty)
45g onions or shallot (i did’t use)
50g cheddar cheese, shredded
1 egg
10g caster sugar
55g vegetable oil (i used olive oil)
50g fresh milk
90g cake flour
1/2tsp baking powder
1/8tsp baking soda

Method
1. Stir fry ham (and onion) till fragrant. Set aside to cool.
2. Use a hand whisk to beat egg and sugar until well combined.
3. Add in oil and milk, continue to whisk until well mixed.
4. Sift flour, baking powder and baking soda together. Add into the mixture in step 3, use a spatula to fold the flour mixture in.
5. Add in cheese and fried ham (and onion). Use the spatula and gently mix well.
6. Scoop the batter into the muffin cups about 3/4 full. (i sprinkler top with some leftover cheese)
7. Bake in preheated oven at 180 degree C, 25 to 30mins.

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I love love how the kitchen and living room were filled with the smell of this bake. Definitely putting a smile on me on a Monday morning.

Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市 (Taiwan)

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Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市 was not on our list of night markets to visit because it never surface from all the google-ing. This night market was recommended by a local and mentioned we would need to cab there from Banqiao 板桥 Metro Station. After checking on google map, Mr Boyfriend decided we can walk from Fuzhong 府中 Metro Station, and he’s right! It’s just a 10 to 15mins walk and everyone who’s going to Taipei should visit this night market.Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

The sign of the start of the night market if you walked from Fuzhong 府中 Metro Station.

Being our last night market in Taiwan, we spent whole night here playing at their game stalls, snacking and strolling through the street enjoying the atmosphere. Here’s some stuffs we tried and find them satisfying:

Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

When doing some research before heading to the night market, this Sesame Oil Chicken was on the ‘must-eat’ list. Instead of having it there, we pack back to the hotel.Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

This didn’t quite agree with me, but Mr Boyfriend like it. Unlike our local style, it’s more of a soup kind. It’s fragrant but the soup is too oily for me. A either you like or don’t like dish. No harm trying if you are there. Lots of locals are q-ing up for this.Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

Freshly Deep-fried Yam Ball. If you love yam, you got to try this. When we first buy, there’s no Q in front of us. BUT when we walked past it on our way back, there’s a long Q. Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

I ordered the salted egg favor. Love the yam, love the salted egg, love the meat floss. The combi is very tasty. Sadly I can only stomach one of this because there’s still a whole stretch of stalls to visit.Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

QQ Ball aka Sweet Potato Ball. This is the third stall we had tried during this trip and this is really the best. Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

It’s fresh, its huge, it’s Q, it’s crispy and you can really taste the sweetness of sweet potato (means not much flour added). Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

Seafood Shell. Saw this at other night markets but first try here.Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

It’s like our otah without the spiciness, added with fresh scallop. Interestingly served in a shell.Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

Tomato. Serious. They sell fresh juicy tomato with a sauce mixed on the spot. Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

The sauce is pretty unique in taste, it’s sweet plus a bit of ginger taste. Somehow, it really goes very well with the tomato. I’m not a tomato person, especially raw ones. But I find myself enjoying this. Maybe also because this is the most healthy stuff to balance all the unhealthy eats for the past 13 days. Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市Crispy Chicken Roll. Using chicken skin as the ‘paper’ and rolling chicken meat in it.
Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

Super healthy but who cares! It’s heaven. The chicken skin is so crispy and thin, it contains almost zero oil to it. Plus it’s freshly cooked. Crispy on the outside and tender juicy in the inside.Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

Deep-fried Cheese. Again, another long Q stall.Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

Ordered the original. Can’t really remember the texture now but it does have the ‘wow’ factor. Plus there’s lots of other favors to choose from. Do try.Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

Flying Fish Fishcake. Each stick is freshly friend and there’s a piece of hard boiled egg in each fishcake.Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

There’s also some sauces that you can apply onto your fishcake yourself. QQ and yum yum. Regretted sharing one among the two of us. (p.s. if you walked from Fuzhong 府中 Metro Station, this stall is at the other end of the night market)Nan-Ya Night Market 南雅夜市

Udon Burger. Where the bread is actually pressed udon that’s crispy on the outside. 1 side of the bread is then fry again with an egg. Patty of your choice of pork or chicken (cant remember other favors). BCL IMG_3594

This is how ‘thick’ it is. It reminds me of Mos Burger. Interesting and of course delicious. Love the crispy udon, and pork patty and tons of seaweed.  

And these are not just all we had for the night! We pack some finger food back to our hotel for supper, e.g. deep-fried mushrooms and mega sized popiah. Of course we almost played at the game stalls to aid digestion. Comparing to other night markets at Taipei, the cost of playing games here is cheaper and easier to earn yourself a prize.

Though a tourist night market, not many tourist visit or know about this place. Even their locals might now know the direction here. But we promise you, it’s really worth to spend one night here.

For the food, for the games and for the people.

Man Lai Hot Spring Ramen 满来溫泉拉面 (Taiwan)

Man Lai Hot Spring Ramen 满来溫泉拉面 at XinBeiTou 新北投 seems to be a hot spot for the locals and tourists. It was packed when we went over for a late lunch. Luckily we didn’t had to Q too long as we were both hungry after more than 2 hours on travelling from the south to the north.

满来溫泉拉面

Their menu are printed on wooden block and we ordered a table-full of stuffs.
满来溫泉拉面

Hot Spring Egg (NT 25). It’s chilled, and runny. There’s also a small bit of wasabi by the side if you need a extra kick. I mixed the egg up with the sauce and finished everything. Do save some space for this. And definitely a ‘must-order’. I wish I can have one now. 满来溫泉拉面

Deep-fried Tofu (NT 40). Crispy on the outside, silky on the inside. No taste of oiliness. Good to try too. 满来溫泉拉面

Combo Ramen (NT 190). I’m not sure how to translate the name of it, this ramen just had everything and anything. The ingredients totally outweigh the amount of ramen. Plus all the ingredients taste so so fresh. I got full from clearing the ingredients and the sides. Felt so apologetic for not finishing the ramen but I’m really seriously too full.  满来溫泉拉面

The soup was superb! We finished the last drop. 满来溫泉拉面

Pork Chop (NT 60). Skip this. Not worth giving your tummy space to. It’s overcooked/ hard to bite.满来溫泉拉面After google-ing before posting, it’s said that this shop is not be the original shop that is famous at XinBeiTou 新北投, but at the same time, there’s a notice at the shop front declaring it as the original and they had shifted here for a more hygiene environment. How true I do not know

But both of us do like the soup base, the ramen, the hot spring egg, the deep-fried tofu from this outlet. So that’s enough for us. Plus it’s just beside our hotel! And less than 3 minutes walk from the train station of XinBeiTou 新北投.

Man Lai Hot Spring Ramen 满来溫泉拉面
No. 1-8, Zhongshan Rd 
Open 11:30am – 9:00pm

Snake King Yan 蛇王恩 (Hong Kong)

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I had given my second ‘first’ to Hong Kong during this year trip to Snake King Yan 蛇王恩. Yes, I eaten and tasted snake meat. Till now I cannot believe it.Snake King Yan 蛇王恩

We did not deliberately looked for snake to eat. This shop happen to be opposite a public toilet which the guys rushed to when we reach Temple Street at Jordan. And being guys, and the cold weather, everyone (besides me) are interested and opt to warm ourselves up with snake soup as it’s consider a ‘heaty’ food for Chinese. Snake King Yan 蛇王恩

Thick Snake Soup 蛇羹. This is the thick soup version with lots of black fungus and TONS of snake meat. I’m not sure what the green garnish is but I don’t like it. To some maybe it’s like spring onion to soup.

Snake King Yan 蛇王恩

If you were to take this without knowing it’s snake, you will feel like you are eating fish meat texture + chicken taste. But after a few spoons, there’s this aftertaste that I don’t like. It’s like the mutton taste of mutton. Maybe it’s just me as the guys enjoyed it. Or it’s the mental reminder it’s snake I’m eating.
Snake King Yan 蛇王恩Clear Snake Soup 蛇汤. I prefer this more! It’s just like drinking normal double boiled soup. There’s no taste of the snake meat (unlike the thick version) but there’s taste of the chinese herbs and meat. I had more of this and accepted this readily.

Knowing we are not locals, the shop owners were pretty friendly. While we were there, the shop has a constant flow of customers eating in and ordering takeaways. So it’s really a very local thing to do while you are in Hong Kong.

But next time while the guys are enjoying their thick snake soup, I will opt for other non-snake items. Still not a fan of it. But I’m glad I gave it a try.

Snake King Yan 蛇王恩
佐敦吳松街80號A

 

New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館 (Hong Kong)

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For every trip to Hong Kong, we always make it a point to visit one of their islands. Not only for a seafood view, but also to purchase some dried seafood (e.g. dried shrimp eggs which goes very well with noodles) and also for the view. Been to Tai O and Lamma Island. So this round we ferry off to Cheung Chau (長洲) and thoroughly pig ourselves out with the seafood meal!

New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

After a hike to their North Pavilion, we were back to their main street. New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館 is actually introduced by one of the local street food stall owner as we did not research for which stall to dine at before coming over. New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

 

With 7 of us, we were debating whether to order Set C (5 to 6pax) or Set D (10 to 12pax). Looking at the price, we went with Set D but did not ordered any rice to go with it. New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

The boys went with cold beer which I remember was relatively cheap there and this beer intro by the restaurant is also relatively smoothing. They ordered quite a few bottles for the meal.

New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

It was really a table-full meal.

New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

Salt & Pepper Mantis Shrimp 椒盐濑尿虾. I LOVE THIS!!! I know they don’t look cute and they are hard to de-shell. BUT the meat of this shrimp/ prawn is simply heavenly! The texture is good and there’s a dry-sweetness after taste. And being pretty sizable, it’s pretty meaty. But it’s really chore to de-shell.

New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

2-ways Pork Ribs 特色鸳鸯骨. I couldn’t remember the taste of these months after the trip. But half of it was spicy with lots of garlic and another non-spicy. Meat was definitely tender.

New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

Boiled Prawns 白灼生虾. Freshness. There’s no other ways to comment about this.New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

Stir-fried Spring Onion & Ginger Crab 薑蔥炒蟹. I briefly remember the taste not bad. But it was too troublesome to eat this as it’s not the meaty crabs we were used to in Singapore. The crab meat was pretty fine and tasty though. Not something I enjoyed eating.New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

Steamed Scallop with Garlic 蒜茸粉絲蒸扇貝. Another love dish. Fresh scallop + garlic + soy sauce + glass noodles = superb. Nothing really special but with the price, we had gotten lots of scallop. New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

Cheesy Cuttlefish Ball 芝心墨鱼丸. I definitely remember this! Not only does the cuttlefish ball contains bits of cuttlefish, it’s super Q and there’s melted cheese in the center of it. I couldn’t get over the Q-ness of it.New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

Steamed fish 清蒸海上鲜. I’m not sure what type of fish is this. But I didn’t like the texture. It’s just me as the guys enjoyed it.New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館

Stir-fried seasonal vegetables 清炒時菜. With all the meat and seafood. I truly enjoyed the vegetable. Light and much needed fiber to the meal.New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館The meal took us more than an hour to clear and everyone was so full and satisfied from these. But while blogging, I realize the restaurant might had missed out the soup. Nonetheless, it was a very hearty meal.

Damage for the set meal was around SG$127. We felt it’s worth the price for the fresh seafood and way cheaper than what we will have to pay locally. Plus we get to dine by the habour.

To get to New Baccarate Seafood Restaurant 新金湖海鮮菜館, once you alight from the ferry, turn left and it’s the last restaurant on the street.

Writing this made me miss the mantis shrimps.