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Apr 9, 2017 by Liv Wan

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Buttermilk Fried Chicken

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Dan Bing: Taiwanese Egg Crepe. Delicious!

Oct 10, 2016 by Liv Wan

Stir Fried Beef with Thai Chive Flower and Bean Curd

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Chicken Satay Recipe

Chicken Satay Recipe

chicken satay recipe

Something my husband’s colleagues keep asking for is chicken satay. They are fully aware that I’m a chef and they’ve tried many of my dishes, including chow mein, salad boat sandwich, shenjiangbao and even thai green curry but they keep asking for satay.

I must highlight chicken satays are NOT Chinese or Taiwanese foods, they come from Indonesia. However in the UK if you ever go to one of the popular Chinese buffets or takeaways, doesn’t matter which one, you’ll nearly always find chicken satays on the menu. I understand these restaurants and takeaways want to cater for a lot of tastes but again satays aren’t Chinese or Taiwanese.

I do however like eating chicken satays and while this satay recipe probably isn’t like a traditional satay this is the way I like to make them.

I also made a pickled vegetable salad to go with this satay recipe. I’m not a big salad person but this salad is both sweet and sour and suits these satays ideally.

Credit: All photos were taken by Chris at: Chris Radley Photography

chicken satay recipe


Chicken Satay Recipe

Course Main Dish
Prep Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 3 people


Chicken Satay Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 450 g chicken fillet or breast
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp pepper powder
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp Chinese bbq sauce
  • 2 tsp white sesame paste
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp chopped spring onion
  • 1 tsp ground garlic
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric

Pickled Vegetable Salad Ingredients

  • 1/2 tsp Sichuan pepper
  • 1 tsp peppercorns
  • 2 bay leafs
  • 1 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2-3 shallots
  • 3-4 raddish
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 bowl mixed salad leaves


Procedure for Satays

  1. Marinade chicken fillets with all of the seasonings and store in a fridge to marinade for at least 1 hour.
  2. Char grill or barbeque the satays (I used a griddle pan for this recipe).

Procedure for Pickled Vegetable Salad

  1. Peel the shallots and carrots.
  2. Slice the shallots and raddish as thinly as you can but only as comfortable as you can. Shred the carrots.
  3. Boil all of the seasonings from the sichuan pepper to the sugar.
  4. After the seasonings have boiled turn off the fire and add all of the vegetables. Leave it aside to cool down.
  5. The dish is now ready to serve but if you want to you can mix the salad with mixed salad leaves.


Spanish Chickpea, Chorizo and Prawn Soup Recipe

Spanish Chickpea, Chorizo and Prawn Soup Recipe

spanish chickpea chorizo and prawn soup recipe

As promised in my first blog of the year I’ve decided to start adding Western foods to my website. Some of the foods I have learnt through working as a chef, some through friends or family, and some have been influenced by my travels.

Today I’m sharing a Spanish Chickpea, Chorizo and Prawn Soup recipe. When I travelled to Madrid last year we went to a really famous market called Mercado de San Miguel which offers really beautiful foods and at a couple places that offered food that can be compared to fine dining. We tried a Prawn and Egg on toast dish, which Chris really liked, but our favourite thing was a Spanish soup called “Garbanzos con Langostinos Y Jamon”. This fabulous dish costs 10 Euros a bowl and consisted of a tomato soup with chickpeas, jamon and langoustines.

I personally don’t like copying recipes exactly so here is my variation of this dish. I put chorizo in it instead of Jamon, so it’s a bit spicier and the taste is richer and I used prawns instead of langoustines. As much as I like langoustines they’re a bit difficult to get hold of, even in Scotland!

If you travel to Madrid I really recommend travelling to this market. I’ve included a few pictures of the market below and trust me the food there is beautiful but I hope you enjoy my recipe also.

I’ve also written a recipe for “Chorizo Foraccia” which I’ve included in the photos here.

Credit: A number of these photos and the final photos for this dish were taken by Chris Radley Photography

Spanish Chickpea Chorizo and Prawn Soup Recipe
Spanish Chickpea Chorizo and Prawn Soup Recipe
Mercado de San Miguel baker
Mercado de San Miguel food
Mercado de San Miguel Ice Cream
mercado de san miguel stall
garbanzos con langostinos y jamon
mercado de san miguel food
mercado de san miguel madrid pastry
mercado de san miguel architecture
mercado de san miguel crowd
mercado de san miguel jamon
mercado de san miguel pastries
mercado de san miguel produce
mercado de san miguel sweets
mercado de san miguel vegetables


Spanish Chickpea Chorizo and Prawn Soup Recipe

Course Main Dish
Prep Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 4 people


  • 1 medium sized onion
  • 450 g freshly chopped tomatoes
  • 400 g tinned tomatoes
  • 2 small carrots diced
  • 800 g tinned tomatoes
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 150 g chorizo
  • 225 g Prawns
  • 2 tsp rosemary chopped
  • 1 ltr stock you can use chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 pinch saffron


  1. Chop the onion and garlic finely then heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a stock pan.
  2. Sauté the onion and garlic first. Sweat these in the pan then add the carrots and sauté for another 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add the freshly chopped tomatoes and rosemary and sauté for another 2-3 minutes. Then add the tinned tomatoes and 1 litre of stock. Bring to the boil then simmer for 30 minutes.
  4. Remove the chickpeas from their packaging and rinse under cold water to refresh them. Cut the chorizo into thin slices and remove the shells from the prawns.
  5. After 30 minutes puree the soup with a pinch of saffron to add colour and leave aside.
  6. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a normal pan and sauté the chorizo first until the fat from the chorizo comes out. Once the fat starts to come out of the chorizo add the chickpeas and mix together. Keep mixing/frying for 3 minutes to let the chickpeas blend their flavour with the chorizo.
  7. Combine the chickpeas and chorizo with the soup in a suitable size stockpot and simmer for another 30 minutes.
  8. Add the prawns and cook for another five minutes (the prawns should only take about 5 minutes to cook) then it’s ready to serve. Season with salt and pepper to suit you taste. I used some rosemary to garnish the dish but that’s entirely optional.


Mustard Green Chicken Soup A Taiwanese New Year Dish

Mustard Green Chicken Soup A Taiwanese New Year Dish

mustard green chicken soup

Mustard Green Chicken Soup is one of our traditional Taiwanese New Year dishes. The long stalk from the vegetable represents long life and it’s simply a great dish for Chinese New Year.

The Mustard Green vegetable is also known as Brassica Juncea. It’s a kind of mustard plant that not only Chinese people use in their food but also Indian. It has a very unique taste that has a kind of horseradish-mustard flavour. Another thing worth mentioning about Mustard Green is it’s healthy benefits.

Mustard Green contains high levels of Vitamin K, C and A as well as being a good source of folic acid. Mustard Green also provides a rich source of anti-oxidants and flavonoids which can help the body prevent prostate, breast, colon and ovarian cancers.

Regular consumption of mustard greens in the diet is known to prevent arthritis, osteoporosis, iron deficiency, anaemia and is believed to protect from cardiovascular diseases, asthma and colon and prostate cancers.

I love drinking hot soup in the winter. Maybe it’s me but this winter seems to have been particularly long so whenever I get a chance I make a hot soup. It’s comfortable, warm and keeps your whole body warm during the winter.

Last week I had a speech about eating Chinese food in Glasgow as part a Chinese New Year festival and one of the foods I was promoting was soup.

SOUP is a really important part of Chinese cuisine. Chinese and Taiwanese soups are completely different to western soups. A lot of western soups are cooked using butter and cream but we like to think of our soup as art.

In Chinese cooking, we use many different ingredients for soup but our soups are seasonal and also medicinal. If I’m sick with flu for example, I like to add a bit of ginger in my soup. A lot of Chinese people will also put different kinds of Chinese medicine in their soups to maintain their bodies and improve their health. As you can tell, it’s very different with Chinese cooking. A good soup can be healthy, filling, good for your belly, improve your stamina and strengthen your health.

So this mustard green chicken soup not only has a great meaning but is really great for your health. It’s a really supern dish to start your New Year with.

Credit: All photos were taken by Chris at: http://www.chrisradleyphotography.com

mustard green chicken soup
mustard green chicken soup


Mustard Green Chicken Soup A Taiwanese New Year Dish

Course Main Dish
Prep Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 4 people


  • 1 whole chicken cut into pieces
  • 800 g mustard green cut into 3-5cm lengthways
  • 3 pieces ginger
  • salt
  • pepper


  1. Blanch the chicken and rinse under cold water to give it a quick wash. This process gets rid of any unpleasantness from the chicken.
  2. Put the chicken into a stockpot and add ginger. Add water until the contents of the stockpot are covered. Boil it first then simmer for 1 and half hour.
  3. Check the chicken meat is soft and put the mustard green into the soup to cook along with the chicken. Season the soup and it’s ready to serve.


Fa Gao A Taiwanese new year dessert recipe

Fa Gao A Taiwanese new year dessert recipe

fa gao

I hope everyone had a great Chinese new year this year. After I introduced you to a few Chinese New Year dishes and explained why we have those dishes for our Chinese New Year dinner. I realized after writing these that I didn’t tell you about the origins of Chinese New Year.

I think there are many different stories behind it but my favorite one is about “monster Nian”.

We believe Chinese New Year started in ancient China when an evil monster called Nian who had a head like a lion and a body as strong as a bull, lived in the deepest ocean but every January or February he would leave the ocean and damage villages and kill animals and people. Everybody was really suffering because of this but the villagers then thought about a plan to stop Nian. They found Nian was sensitive towards fire, strong lighting, red colour and loud noises. So the villagers started wearing red clothes, stuck red paper on their doors, played with fire crackers and they were successful. Nian was terrified and stopped attacking the villages.

The people were so happy that they had got rid of Nian that every year around January/February they would have a big celebration with their family and friends. They and indeed we celebrate by wearing red clothes, shooting firecrackers, eating and drinking and partying all night.

This is the origin of Chinese New Year.

After the origin of Chinese new year. The recipe today is a Taiwanese dessert that we will usually eat or use it to pray to Buddha and hope he will bring us a good year. This dessert in Chinese is called “發糕 Fa-Gao”. It has meaning of “promotion” so we believe if you eat this cake you will receive a promotion this year. Here is my recipe for this Taiwanese dessert “發糕”. I hope you like it.

fa gao


fa gao
5 from 1 vote

Fa Gao

Course Main Dish
Prep Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4 people


  • 320 g rice flour
  • 100 g plain flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 180 g brown sugar or caster sugar
  • 360 g water
  • 1 bunch dried berries
  • 1 tbsp strawberry jam
  • 1 tsp red food colouring


  1. 1. Mix all the ingredients together evenly and leave it aside for 20 minutes.
  2. 2. Place 4~5 small bowls in a steamer and steam at full power for 5~8 minutes.
  3. 3. Place cup cake paper into small bowls and fill the cup cake paper until 90% full with the mixture.
  4. 4. Steam it for 30 minutes and don’t open the cover or lid or the Fa gao 發糕 won’t rise up.

Recipe Notes

* The second photo shows the original flavour Fa gao. All you need to do is just don’t put any dried berries, strawberry jam and red food colouring into the recipe.


Fortune Squid Blossom Chinese New Year Dish

Fortune Squid Blossom Chinese New Year Dish

lucky flower blossom squid

As you can probably tell from a lot of my posts I really love seafood and today I wanted to make a squid dish. I named this dish “Fortune Squid Blossom” because a flower blossom is regarded as a lucky thing in Chinese culture. Flowers in full bloom symbolize affluence and nobility.

As my previous post talked about there are no strict rules for Chinese new year dishes as long as they are pretty, well presented, taste good but most importantly have a lucky meaning. If a dish has all of these, then you have a great dish for your Chinese new year dinner.

I used part of a body of a squid for making the squid flowers and used the rest of the squid for making the fillings in the middle. I used an egg white when I made the filling but I kept the egg yolk for the steamed egg base. One medium sized squid can make around two squid flowers. Blance the squid flower in boiling for around 5 seconds only and definitely don’t over cook or the squid will turn really chewy.

It is important to not waste any food or ingredients. I always remember the first day I started leaning cooking at college and the teacher always taught us “Don’t waste any food or ingredients!!!”.

Here is my recipe for this Chinese New Year dish called “Fortune Squid Blossom”. I hope you will enjoy it.

Credit: All photos were taken by Chris at: http://www.chrisradleyphotography.com

lucky flower blossom squid procedure


Fortune Squid Blossom Chinese New Year Dish

Course Main Dish
Prep Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 2 people


Ingredients for squid flower

  • 1 medium whole squid
  • 200 g prawns
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 carrot for garnish
  • 1 spring onion for garnish

Seasoning for filling

  • 1/2 tsp rice wine
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper powder
  • 1/4 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp potato starch

Ingredients for Steamed Egg

  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup stock
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper powder

Ingredients for sauce

  • 1 cup stock
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp potato starch water 1/2 tsp potato starch mixed with 1 tbsp cold water


  1. Cut the squid into a flower shape as the photos show. Blanch in boiling salted water for no more than 5 seconds. Soak in cold water afterwards to cool it down.
  2. Process rest of the squid and prawn with all the seasonings.
  3. Rub some potato starch on the squid flower and put some of the processed squid and prawns from step 2 in the middle.
  4. Steamed it at full gas power for 8 minutes.
  5. Mix all the steamed egg ingredients evenly and pour into a soup plate, steamed for 3~5 minutes.
  6. Place the steamed squid flower on top of step 5. Boil 1 cup of stock with 1 teaspoon soy sauce and stir in 1 tablespoon potato starch and water to thick the sauce. Pour the sauce on top of squid flower and steamed egg. It’s now ready to serve.