I got tagged by Foodcrazee and think this is a better place to continue the meme ‘cos Mom’s cooking is all pork, pig, lard. 🙂
1) Perut Ikan – This is a special curry cooked by the Nyonyas, I think. It uses pickled fish guts (ewwss the smell), lots of herbs and vegetables and spices. I used to help mom to pick the daun kadok, daun sekentut (fart leaves!), button brinjals and many types of leaves and herbs found in the kampung. Mom would preserved the fish guts she collected from the fish market in salt. Once, she didn’t do it well and the whole bottle ended up with maggots. Eewwss….But once mom cooked perut ikan, she will prepare a very big pot and gave to all our neighbours. My sisters and I would ate them for days with bread, rice or on its own.
2) Salted pork – Kiam bak which my mom seasoned with salt and left in room temperature for days. We do not have a fridge back then. I suspected the meat tasted good ‘cos there was some form of rotting involved and hence, the special fragrance! Ewss..but I never had any tummy ache though.
3) Bak chang – Whenever my mother cooked, she would prepare big batch and gave to our immediate neighbours. Our neighbours would do the same too. It was very much a community feel. No one can surpass the bak chang mom made. Big pieces of fatty pork that melts in the mouth.
4) Chinese new year spread – The first two years after my mom died, I would missed her Chinese New Year foods terribly. That’s why I decided to do it myself to maintain that connection with mom.
5) Fried lard pieces with green chillies – This is a one of its kind dish. Sweet, sour and the fragrance of green chillies blended really well with crispy lard pieces. I dare not try making them for fear of heart attack.
6) White radish soup – Mom would add sambal belacan in the soup and called it masak titeh (that’s how it sounds to me). I always have cravings for hot soup mixed with sambal belacan whenever I was pregnant.
7) Sweet potato with sayur manis – Another mom’s regular dish. Cooked with coconut milk, sambal belacan, shrimps, sweet potato and sayur manis (the green vege used for pan mee?)
8) Fried bread ala mom – When my husband first saw us cooking bread like this, he said we are mad. We used stale bread, cut into cubes and fried them like char koay kak. Mom used sambal (she made great sambal, btw), beansprout, prawns, eggs and fry the bread cubes like char koay teow style.
9) Fried prawns with starch – Very much like oh-chien but done with lots of tapioca flour, prawns and yes, you guess right, sambal. Add chives too.
10) Curry ikan kering – This dish has a sad ending for me. My mom died suddenly after a bout of bad flu. She got pneumonia and just passed away the night she was admitted. She was sick and wasn’t able to cook. So, my sis cooked and mom ate and grumbled about her curry skill (LOLs). It was her last proper meal. Mom’s curry dried fish is thick, filled with lots of pineapple, tau pok, brinjals and long beans. I haven’t been able to get that kind of curry, ever.
Now that I had written the above, I think the reason why my mom’s food is good is because she never scrimp on the ingredients. And she cooked with gusto, adding stuffs without reservation. Of all my sisters, I think I inherited her skill most.
Most of the foods I mentioned here had been blogged before but I am too lazy to look through two blogs and over 500 posts for the links. If there is any particular dish you are interested in, do ask and I will try to search for you.
I am not tagging anyone ‘cos I don’t know that many foodie bloggers. Most would have been tagged already. But if you are a foodie bloggers and wish to take up the meme, please,please leave your URL here ‘cos I love to hear your mom’s secrets.