Wednesday, November 30, 2011

(NOT QUITE) THE TWELVE EATS OF CHRISTMAS

Try singing this to The Twelve Days of Christmas ;D

On the first day of Christmas, my true friend treated me to Roast Turkey at Swez Brasserie.

On the second day of Christmas, my true friend treated me to Beetroot & Feta Canape, 
Smoked Salmon Rosette and Waldorf Salad with diced apple & celery. 

On the third day of Christmas, my true friend treated me to
Smooth and creamy, soft and sticky Pumpkin Risotto with Saffron   
And Roast Turkey at Swez Brasserie

On the fourth day of Christmas, my true friend treated me to golden and rich Pumpkin Soup
with deliciously crispy Quail Wontons 
Together with fluffy buttered bread rolls
And Roast Turkey at Swez Brasserie. 

On the fifth day of Christmas, my true friend treated me to a fillet of sauteed Salmon topped with some Apple Sauce and chopped Walnuts
Too sumptuous to comprehend after the superb soup 
And Roast Turkey at Swez Brasserie. 

On the sixth day of Christmas, my true friend treated me to
Basil and Pine Nut Stuffed Turkey Breast
Baked Almond Cranberry Squash
Full of enticing aromas and tender, juicy textures
Redolent with true festive spirits, cheery company
And Roast Turkey at Swez Brasserie. 

On the seventh day of Christmas, my true friend treated me to Cranberry Cheese Yule Log
So decadently luscious
A fine spongey roll
For calling on friends with true festive spirits, cheery company
And Roast Turkey at Swez Brasserie. 

On the eighth day of Christmas, my true friend treated me to the sight of Chef Jean Marc Veron carving the Roast Honey Glazed Turkey with Cranberry Sauce and Gravy 
Filled with fine stuffing with glazed Chestnuts so temptingly moist that 
The taste scores high and oh so yummy; comparable to that partridge in a pear tree. 

On the ninth day of Christmas, my true friend treated me to
Nice festive cookies
Eats that meant hours of loving baking 
Special cocktails with straws a-spinning
Slick choices awaiting
A fine buffet spread
For lil darling guests
There's gingerbread, sweets and chocolates
And Roast Turkey at Swez Brasserie. 

On the tenth day of Christmas, my true friend treated me 
To a festive dinner that left us leaping
Nice festive cookies 
Eats that meant hours of loving baking
Special cocktails with straws a-spinning 
Slick choices awaiting, A fine buffet spread
For lil darling guests
There's gingerbread, sweets and chocolates 
And Roast Turkey at Swez Brasserie. 


On the eleventh day of Christmas, my true friend treated me
To an evening of festive feasting that left us all a-leaping
Nice festive cookies 
Eats that meant hours of loving baking
Special cocktails with straws a-spinning 
Slick choices awaiting, A fine buffet spread
For lil darling guests
There's gingerbread, sweets and chocolates 
And Roast Turkey at Swez Brasserie. 

 

On the twelfth day of Christmas
even if my true love doesn't sent to me 
Twelve drummers drumming
Eleven pipers piping
Ten lords a-leaping
Nine ladies dancing
Eight maids a-milking
Seven swans a-swimming
Six geese a-laying
Five golden rings
Four calling birds
Three French hens
Two turtle doves

There's always Roast Turkey at Swez Brasserie!

For reservations on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at Swez Brasserie, please call 03 - 7665 1111. Eastin Hotel Petaling Jaya,13 Jalan 16/11, Pusat Dagang Seksyen 16, Petaling Jaya Selangor

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

MAKE IT BIG!

You have a choice of two side dishes to complete your order of roast chicken...I opted for roast potatoes and grilled vegetables

From Plan B and Ben's to Ricetaurant and Canoodling, there seems to be no stopping the BIG group. Its surfeit of good food and drinks is now extended to the area of food retailing via Ben's Independent Grocer at Solaris Dutamas.

Imagine you can pluck fresh lettuce off their hydroponic shelves and shop for a wide selection of imported food that includes Jamie Oliver's range of condiments and pasta sauces, Koko Black's fine chocolates and Suga's candies, and premium Wagyu steaks all in one place.

If you feel peckish, make a beeline for Ben's General Food Store where you can relish in deli-style pastas and pies, scrumptious roast chicken hot off the rotisserie, hearty salads, oven-fresh pizzas and luscious dessert.

On my last visit, I literally drooled when I spied a couple seated at an adjoining table hungrily wolfed down a whole roast chicken by themselves. So this time it was my turn to zoom straight in to the juicy poultry which tasted as stunning as they look.
Yummy roast chicken available in whole or half portion...simply satisfying!
My friend's portion of Moroccan Lamb Pie was delish but the scant filling encased within the rather thick puff pastry really didn't do it justice. It came with a choice of one side dish so my pal plumped for the surprisingly delectable Orecchiette Pasta Salad with grated cheese.
Love the buttery and flaky pie crust despite its scant but flavourful filling. The tiny ear-shaped pasta with peas, rocket and grated cheese went down quite a treat with us.
We love the indulgent Mushroom Lasagna with Corn Salad as do my daughter who devoured her portion of Macaroni and Cheese within minutes!
The layers of lasagna packed with earthy mushrooms came with a generous serving of pesto sauce
I adore the golden, tender corn niblets in this scrumptious salad that accompany the lasagna
Cheesey but nice...you can't go wrong with this Mac & Cheese

Monday, November 14, 2011

FIRST CLASS


It's not exactly Hell's Kitchen but my maiden cooking class at Le Cordon Bleu was no walk in the park either. I daresay there's a lot of sweat (remember what they say about if you can't stand the heat...?) plus a smidgen of blood (the mandolin was the day's lethal weapon!) and some tears (couldn't recall the last time I cried over cut onions...LOL) involved. Overall, the experience was still an invaluable one.


Under cuisine chef lecturer Franck Bruwier's tutelage, we whipped up French Onion Soup and Roast Duck Breast, Potatoes with Bacon and Mushrooms Cooked in Goose Fat. The end results were well worth our efforts too...these photos below are proof enough.

 Sweet and hearty...the sublime French Onion Soup with a piece of cheesey toast

Pink and tender...Roast Duck Breast with Mushroom cooked in Goose Fat with Smoked Duck Slices
The seemingly simple French Onion Soup required the onions to be sliced length-wise so that their natural juices are released slowly during cooking. Chef Bruwier showed us novices a few tricks like the correct way to hold the knife and how to slice and chop onions without losing any of our fingers!


We learned how to 'sweat' the sliced onion with a little butter and a sprinkling of flour over medium heat until they turn translucent. Then they were literally put onto the back burner to gently draw out the natural sugars.


Once the onions were caramelised, some white wine and port were added in. The beef consomme (or chicken stock) was the last to go in after the spirits have been reduced adequately.


Of course we didn't just complete this dish in one go. In between bouts of stirring and letting our pot of sliced onion sit on the stove, the chef taught us how to prepare crisscut potatoes using a mandolin...

 Needless to say not every spud made the cut and one can't expect to have nimble fingers overnight!



I rarely cook duck at home so this session was an eye-opener for me. Like beef and lamb, one shouldn't overcook duck and I've always prefer the centre to remain slightly pink.

The duck breast was seared in a pan first before left to roast in the oven



Carrot, celery and shallot formed the mire poix for our brown sauce
Each of us was given a large slab of duck breast which was then skinned, leaving behind just a thin layer of fat. After scoring and seasoning it lightly, we seared the breast meat on high heat to seal in its inherent juicy flavour. Under the chef and his assisting team's supervision, we picked up several more practical tips and tricks like how to prepare the accompanying brown sauce and sauteed mushroom along the way.

A sumptuous feast that's akin to restaurant standards!  
Thank you to Chef Franck Bruwier and team for the first class experience at Le Cordon Bleu!


It was half a day well spent. I certainly look forward to cook up a storm at more of Le Cordon Bleu's culinary workshops (priced at RM450 per session) in the near future.

For enquiries and course information, call Sheryln Lee, Sunway Le Cordon Bleu Institute of Culinary Arts, tel: 603 5632 1188 or fax: 603 5631 1133.