Travel Adventure: Tokyo, Japan

If you have been following me on Instagram, Big On Food, you would know that I was in Tokyo for a short family getaway. So for today, I would be sharing my highlights of the trip!

I went to only Tokyo, for about 5 days.The weather was amazing, chilly yet filled with sunshine. When we arrived, it was dinnertime. I decided to Google the shops around the hotel, and within seconds, an udon shop appealed to me. I was intrigued and pretty satisfied with my finding. The udon store was just 5 minutes walk from the hotel, which made that factor a brownie point. We took a stroll and found the shop. The shop was tucked in a quiet alley way. It could only accommodate about 10 to 15 people at once. We were lucky enough to patronise the shop when there was not many people. We were seated quickly and was given an english menu, which was very helpful. The shop only sells udon noodles, cold and hot. If you are not a fan of noodles or udon, this might not be the shop for you. But do give it a chance as they sell excellent fresh udon noodles, with the perfect chewiness and great texture.

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Witnessing the master at work…

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We placed our order without difficulty and waited patiently. We ordered both hot and cold noodles.

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In this photo are the cold noodles. The one on the bottom is plain udon noodles with a fried tempura fish paste. The bowl on top was cold udon served with a soft poached egg with braised beef slices. A dipping sauce was given to both bowls of noodles.
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We got a hot tempura udon as well as a bowl of udon in a rich beef broth with beef slices. These bowls are hearty and delicious.

It was definitely a satisfying first meal to kickstart the trip. Both hot and cold noodles were heavenly. The shop was cozy and our meal there was enjoyable. However do keep in mind to visit the shop at a non-peak hour as right after we finished our meal, there was a queue in front of the shop. The shop is located at 2 151 0053, 2 Chome-20-16 Yoyogi, Shibuya, Tokyo 151-0053, Japan (Shinjuku Station, Exit 6). It is called 慎 Shin Udon. Do check them out as their stuffs are fabulous. 

So after such an amazing first meal, we knew that Japan would not be too disappointing. The next highlight of the trip was Tsukiji Fish Market. This would be the place for all seafood fanatics as the seafood you get could not get any fresher. We spent an hour there and damage was certainly done to our stomach, in a good way.

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We tried fresh oysters, which had the essence of the sea. It was silky smooth and absolutely divine.
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The sea urchins were creamy and exoctic. It was lovely to have tried it at the fish market.
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This dish was pretty unique. It had crab meat, scallop and abalone. It was then blow-torched on the surface with a sauce and then served with fish roe.
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It has an intense flavour, savory from the sauce and sweet from all the fresh seafood. It was an explosion of flavour which I did not mind.

The last dish tried in the fish market was an interesting one. It had various eating methods, so it is best for the shop owners to explain how to eat this dish.

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This dish is a rice bowl with cubed sashimi above the rice. So there 3 ways to enjoy this rice bowl. 1. Enjoy it with plain wasabi and soy sauce. (My favourite method, as it retained it’s original flavours of the rice and fish.) 2. Eaten with pickled ginger and pickles. 3. A broth added to the rice.
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Instructions are provided on the ways to enjoy this rice bowl. It had english and it allows consumers to better understand this dish.

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Overall, Tsukiji Fish Market is a must visit when in Tokyo. You would be able to witness fishmongers slicing fresh whole tuna fish and lots of people trying to get a taste of fresh seafood.

The final highlight of my trip was visiting an owl cafe! It was the most extraordinary of the entire trip. You might be thinking why I am raving for visiting some bird cafe, as you all know, I am staying in Singapore. In Singapore, you do not see much owls, I see lots of bats, pigeons and swallow but no owls, therefore it was an unforgettable moment to be able to visit an owl cafe! The little cafe we visited had about 10 owls, different species and opposite characters. We were able to pet it and hold it. It was impressive that owls were such cute and beautiful souls.

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An owl selfie was necessary when you visit an owl cafe once in a lifetime.
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I was rather nervous while holding onto the owl but all was well in the end.
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Visiting the owl cafe was a memorable event that I would not forget.

These were the highlights of my short trip to Japan. I hope you have enjoyed this post as much as I have. Thank you for reading and till next time, See you!

More information on the places I visited…

慎 Shin Udon–  2 151 0053, 2 Chome-20-16 Yoyogi, Shibuya, Tokyo 151-0053, Japan (Shinjuku Station, Exit 6). Tripadvisor website: Shin Udon

Tsukiji Fish Market– Above Tsukiji Shijo Station on the Oedo Subway Line 

Shinjuku Owl Cafe, Mohumohu – 5F, 3-35-2 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku
Tokyo

 Spread Love & Be Kind! Xoxo Pei Gee

Stay connected with me on…

Instagram @BigOnFood

Pinterest @PeigeeTan

Or, drop me a mail at TPG22@hotmail.com

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MEATLESS MEXICAN QUINOA BOWL!

Here is another meatless recipe to add to your Meatless Mondays! I am sure there are many such recipes out there but I would love to share mine with you! Sit back and enjoy!

I got idea of a quinoa bowl as I needed a quick dinner and I coincidentally have cooked quinoa on hand. This bowl is the easiest bowl you would ever do. There are not much cooking involved, which provides you the maximum nutrients in the ingredients!

IMG_6978In my bowl, there are red kidney beans and corn. I bought the ready-to-eat can beans and corn, all you have to do is drain them. Toss them with the quinoa, with fresh parsley, season with olive oil, salt and pepper and add other spices and herbs to give them more kick!

The other ingredient I added were bell pepper/capiscum. I fried them in shallow oil for a few minutes as I did not want raw capisum in my bowl, however if you prefer your capisums crunchy and juicy, feel free to add them raw. That is pretty much all there is to my quinoa bowl.

Other alternatives are adding avocado, chickpea, mango, even cubes of meat if you want it as a meat alternative. I just wanted full carbohydrates, fibre and protein in a bowl. It filled me up rather well as I had some sides as well.

My sides were mushrooms with a garlic-parsley butter. They were cooked very simply with the butter on the cap of the mushrooms. Simple ingredients at it’s best.

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Meatless Mexican Quinoa Bowl

Ingredients: 

Quinoa Bowl-

  • 1/2 of cup of quinoa
  • 1 cup of water (Use vegetable stock for more flavour)
  • 1/2 can of red-kidney beans, drained
  • 1/2 packet of corn, drained
  • 1/4 of green/red/yellow capsicum
  • Handful of chopped fresh parsley (Use dried if you do not have fresh parsley on hand)
  • Olive oil, salt, pepper for seasoning

Garlic-Parsley Mushrooms-

  • About 2-3 mushrooms (Use portobello mushroom for my tummy-filling. I had to use shitaka mushrooms as my nearby supermarket ran out of portobello mushroom)
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
  • Handful of fresh parsley, chopped
  • 3 tablespoon of butter, unsalted
  • Olive oil, salt and pepper

Directions: 

  1. Cook quinoa in a saucepan with water. Season well with salt.
  2. Slice the capisum into thin slices and fry them in shallow oil. To maintain crunchiness in them, fry them for no more than 2 minutes.
  3. Once quinoa is cooked (It would take about 20-30 minutes),in a large bowl, toss quinoa, capsicum, corn, beans and fresh chopped parsley together. Season with a good amount of olive oil, salt and pepper. Do add cumin or paprika for more mediterranean flavours.
  4. To cook the mushrooms, prepare the garlic-parsley butter by melting butter in a microwave. Once the butter have melted, add the chopped parsley and garlic into the butter.
  5. On a pan with a little amount of oil, add mushrooms cap facing down, with the gills showing. Add the butter mixture into the gills and cover the pan.
  6. Allow the steam to cook the mushrooms. The mushrooms should be cooked in about 7 to 10 minutes.
  7. To plate, I rested the mushrooms on a bed of fresh spinach and quinoa on the side.

There you go! My Healthy and meatless mexican quinoa bowl. I ate it with hot sauce because hot sauce goes well with anything! I hope you have enjoyed this recipe and wish that you could give it a shot! Till next time, See you.

Spread Love & Be Kind. Xoxo Pei Gee

Stay connected with me on…

Instagram @BigonFood

Pinterest @PeiGeeTan

Or drop me a mail at TPG22@hotmail.com

Month In Nutshell: May Edition.

This is a long overdue post but regardless of the time, I still want to share what happened in May, and there were many food eaten.

So May was pretty dull as I was buried in books most of the month, however there were baking moments in school. Donuts, stuffed bread and artisan bread were taught. It was fun baking all kinds of bread. To me, being exposed to baking various kinds of bread craved my creativity to experiment on different flavours, shapes and sizes.

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Hot Cross Bun.
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Donuts! (Plain and Coated with Cinnamon Sugar)
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Croissants and Danishes
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These are the artisan bread baked in school. There were baguette, ciabatta and focaccia.

During May, I went to try mediterranean cuisine and I fell in love! The place is called Pita Pan, such a lovely name, they sell meatless mediterranean meals, so it is great for all the vegetarian out there. For the meat eaters, do give this place a shot because it is going blow your mind on how delicious a meatless meal could be.IMG_7291

As it was my first time, I had trouble placing an order. Thankfully there was a platter with various side dishes, which would give you a chance to try a little bit of everything. It is best shared as you would be stuffed, happily and healthily. It consisted of hummus, pickled vegetables, grilled vegetables and salsa. The carbohydrates are falafel balls, a bowl of fragrant seasoned rice and warm pita bread.  The side dishes complimented the pita bread well. My favourite was the hummus with salsa and grilled vegetables stuffed in the pita bread. You would have to assemble the bread yourself, so it is fun and customizable! It was filling and value for money and I highly recommend Pita Pan!

Unfortunately there is only one outlet in Singapore. It is located at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands. Exact location would be linked here!

Another unique dish I tried was Miang Kham. It is a thai salad with a mixture of shredded dried coconuts, peanuts, lemongrass, onion and dried shrimp tossed in lime juice and fish sauce, wrapped with betel leaf. It was something foreign to me and surprisingly, I enjoyed the salad. It was filled with flavours, sweet, salty, a little bit spicy and sour, there were different textures that each individual ingredients gave. It was a great start to dinner! The restaurant I visited serves tasty Thai food as well. They have various outlets all over Singapore, check out their website here!  IMG_6640

These are the few highlights of May. I hope you enjoyed this short post and below are the other happenings throughout the month.

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I posted the recipe for this dish, Poached Egg on Rye Bread with Mango Salsa!
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I baked a Lemon Meringue Cake!

That is all for today’s post! Thank you for reading! Till next time, See you!

Spread Love and Be Kind! Xoxo Pei Gee

Stay Connected with me on…

Instagram @BigOnFood

Pinterest @PeigeeTan

Or, drop me a mail at TPG22@hotmail.com

Poached Egg on Rye Bread with Mango salsa

Hi there! It has been a while since I wrote on this blog and so, I shall share something yummy and colourful. It is simple, easy and can be done under 30 minutes! It is poached egg on rye bread with mango salsa.

You just need to purchase rye bread and maybe mango if you do not have them at home. So without further ado, let’s begin.

My rye bread were made in school with the formulations provided by the chefs in school, therefore unfortunately, I could not share the recipe. But fret not as you could just purchase any artisan bread from your local bakery. The fresher it is, the better. I merely toasted them with a sprinkle of olive oil. Then after they are toasted, rub them with an open surfaced garlic. Do not this step if you dislike the aroma of a garlic.

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These are the artisan bread baked in school. There were baguette, ciabatta and focaccia.

Next is the salsa. I made mango salsa as I had them on hand. You could do pineapple salsa or tomato salsa to go along with your bread, whatever is good with you! My mango salsa consisted of sun-dried tomatoes, mint, olive oil and corn. Simply toss them together and season with salt and pepper. Done in under 10 minutes!

Now, you have come to the special bit. The sauce. To be very honest, all types of sauces go along with this dish. I simply made a mixture of greek yogurt, mustard and honey. You could have hollandaise sauce, cheese sauce and even pesto if you are so in love with herbs!

It is a dish that could be enjoyed for brunch because it is so pretty and so easy to make. I made use of the bread I baked in school and so satisfied that I was able to craft out something so simple yet flavourful. I hope this dish bring smiles on your faces and your tummy!

IMG_6595Poached Egg on Rye bread with Mango salsa

Serves 1 or 2

Ingredients:

  • A slice or 2 of rye bread (Ciabatta works as well)
  • Half a clove of garlic (Just for flavouring the bread, omit this if you do not like the aroma of garlic)
  • One fresh egg

Salsa

  • One ripe mango (The sweeter, the better)
  • About 3 full slices of sun-dried tomatoes, sliced into thin stripes
  • 1/2 pack of corn, ready-to-eat
  • Handful of mint leaves
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to season

Sauce

  • About 3 tablespoon of greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon of mustard
  • about 1/2 tablespoon of honey

Directions:

  1. Toast bread with a splash of olive oil. Once toasted, rub opened garlic surface onto the bread.
  2. Toss mango, corn, sliced sun-dried tomatoes, mint leaves and olive oil together
  3. Bring a medium saucepan to a slow simmer. Add a splash of white vinegar if you like as that would solidify the egg whites faster, however this step is unnecessary.
  4. Crack egg on a separate bowl to prevent breaking of egg yolk. Once there are small bubbles appearing on the bottom of the pan, slowly lower egg into the simmering water. Leave it undisturbed for about 5-8 minutes.
  5. Use a sieve-spoon to scoop up the egg, letting a paper towel to drain the excess moisture.
  6. Assemble the dish by placing the poached egg on the toasted bread, with the salsa on the poached egg. Spoon a spoonful of sauce onto the egg and Viola! IMG_6605
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A runny yolk is a must for poached egg!

Well, that is it for today guys! I hope you have enjoyed this post and would attempt this at home!

Spread Love and Be Kind! Xoxo Pei Gee

Be social with me on …

Instagram @BigOnFood

Pinterest @PeiGeeTan

Or, drop me a mail at TPG22@hotmail.com