Stir-Fried Cangkuk Manis

Here’s another quick and easy dish I learned to make here in Kuching.

Stir-Fried Cangkuk Manis

stir-fried cangkuk manis

Cangkuk Manis (“Chong-cook Ma-Niss”, meaning sweet leaf) or Mani chai in Hokkien is a vegetable that is very common here in Kuching. As a matter of fact, the same day that we arrived here and were introduced to paku, we also got introduced to Cangkuk Manis. Its texture when cooked is like spinach, but without the bitterness. This vegetable has a natural sweetness to it (which is why it’s name has the word “manis” – meaning sweet – in it).


Belacan Fried Chicken

“Guess what I’m craving?”

Belacan Fried Chicken

belacan fried chicken

I asked Nate this the other day. The only time I say this is when I’m craving fried chicken so it was a no-brainer that Nate responded with, “Fried chicken! …KFC?”

I almost said yes to KFC but when I thought about it, I responded, “maybe I’ll just fry some chicken at home. Some belacan fried chicken?” “Yum!” was his reply. (yeah, he’s so not typically American—doncha just love him?!?).


Chinese Beef Stew with Tendon

Stewed beef tendon has hearty flavor with a wonderful mouthfeel.

Chinese Beef and Tendon Stew

Well, I’ve been working for two weeks now and I’m beginning to feel a bit better although I’m still overwhelmed by the amount of work I have to do every week. The hardest part has been coming home to cook after a long day at work. Some days, it’s really rough trying to get into cooking mode when all I want to do is lie down and veg! I have a new respect for all you working moms out there. If you have any tips for me on how to cope, I sure could use them.

Anyway, because of that, my weekends are now my major cooking days. Or at least one of the days, I try to make into a cooking day. The other day (usually Saturday), I put my foot down and insist on some rest—which means no cooking!

Yesterday, I decided I was going to make Chinese Beef Stew. It is something I’ve not made before but I remember distinctly having it at a friend’s house. She had used oxtail so it had a lovely beefy flavor along with the wonderful fragrance of cinnamon and star anise in the broth. She also told me that it was quite easy to make.


Chocolate Haupia Pie Recipe

You deserve a ∏ (Pi) today. So how about a Chocolate Haupia Pie?

chocolate haupia pie slice

Today is March 14: 3.14. If you remember your Geometry, 3.14 is a very significant number. ∏, or “Pi” is the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter. Science and Math geeks like to celebrate the number on March 14. And since it sounds like the word “pie”, Science and Math geeks who bake will make pies on that day as well!

Last year, we threw a big, Hawaiian-themed party at our house. Our Ultimate Hawaiian Backyard Lu’au featured many popular Hawaiian dishes as well as desserts. Our friend Melissa, who is a great baker, prepared this Chocolate Haupia pie for us. (“Haupia”, by the way, is a Hawaiian-style, coconut milk-based pudding.) It was the best!

Thankfully, Melissa and her husband Pat had photographed the pie-making process in their kitchen, and had emailed us their pics. We hadn’t posted the recipe before, so I figured Pi Day would be the perfect time to do it.


About Us

My Photo Annie is mistress of the kitchen while Nate is the master of the grill and smoker. We cook the homestyle Asian and Hawaiian foods of our younger days while also exploring the wider worlds of Western foods.

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