Thursday, October 22, 2009

Pho Toan Thang

Some thursday evening ago, we, or rather my parents, were stuck with the problem of where to eat- of course, us kids are only in charge of deciding where not to eat or whining whenever we dislike the decision made. In the end, we decided to go all the way to Flemmington the eat Vietnamese food.

I haven't been here for a long time but I remember coming here a lot when I was young, and that almost every time we ate here, it would be at the same restaraunt (there weren't so many restaraunts here before!) It's been here for a long time but has changed very little- the decor is pretty much the same as it was 10 years ago and so are the people. And from what I remember of it, the food is just as good!

We walked in quite early in the everning and already, the place was almost full. We were each given a menu which had pictures showing all of the dishes which was great but made it difficult to choose as everything looked so good! (my parents usually choose for me......)

Crispy Chicken with Noodles- $9.50
The chicken has just been fried and so is hot and very very crispy and the meat is tender. Because it's cut up into large pieces, it goes quickly (we each take a piece) and we're left with the noodles are full of flavour so it tastes great by itself!

Vietnamese rice paper rolls $8.00
The dish is quite decieving-at first, you can't really see the rice rolls. And it's all covered in vegetables and chicken roll so it looks rather much like a salad. But once you dig into it, you realise that there are actually rice rolls below and that they are actually very hot. The rice rolls come with a dipping sauce which give it its flavour.

Beef on hot plate $11
The meat is served on a hot plate (or sizzling plate....?). When the sauce is poured on, there's a huge puff of smoke and the aroma of the dish instantly fills the whole restaraunt. It's quite entertaining to watch. And so the dish is very very hot (i like hot food!). The sauce is very delicious and tastes especially great with the rice.

Beef noodle soup- $7.50

This is something we order everytime we come here -so I love it. The meat is half raw but eventually cooks in the hot soup. It comes with a plate of bean sprouts and mint leaves (but I don't like either of them- so I leave it for the rest of my family.....). This is so delicious that when I finish it, I can spend ages trying to fish out the last pieces of rice noodles out of the soup. It's actually quite entertaining! The soup is really good- one of the best I've tasted (although I haven't tasted a lot)

With all the large servings, we leave feeling very very full and satisfied. We probably won't be coming back soon (because Flemmington is not a place we go to often) but there's no doubt that when we do, we'll eat at this restaurant again. Like we always do.

Now- I'd usually put the address here. Only I don't know the address. *sigh*

Edit: Found the adress! =D
Pho Toan Thang
95 The Crescent Shop 9
Flemington, 2140

Pho Toan Thang on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Sushi Bay -Blacktown


I'm such a lazy person.
I take forever to write my posts.
So they pile up....waiting to be written.
Anyways- let's just fast forward to this (or last) weekend!

Friday marked the end of Year 11- no more exams, homework stress etc. etc.
at least for another two weeks. So we had a party! And dinner.
And since this is a food blog, this is obviously about the dinner!

We arrived at Sushi Bay at around 6pm after watching a movie. It was still slightly bright outside (thanks to daylight savings) and kinda early so when we went in, we were the first ones there.

The prices range from $2.50 to $7 so we tried to make sure that we didn't accidently eat too much- it's easy to go overbudget!

Spring Rolls

The hot dishes were very attractive as they were actually hot-the plastic covers were all covered in steam. The spring roll was golden and crunchy- I made quite a mess when I halved them- the pastry flew everywhere!

Chicken Katsu and avocado sushi

Another fried dish. The mayo on the top of the sushi was cute!
Okay. So I didn't actually eat this.

Shredded seafood stick sushi

This sushi was filled with shredded seafood stick. It tasted nice but not the most interesting choice of the night.

Tuna and avocado and salmon roll
I'm not sure why this one is a funny shape.... or why there's a slice of orange between the sushi. But any sushi with tuna, avocado and sushi has to taste good!

Inside Out roll with chicken katsu

Again, the fried chicken was hot and crunchy. The roll would have tasted great (especially with the seasame seeds) except that the chicken was too salty

Salmon Maki Rolls

I don't think it's possible for Salmon Maki rolls to taste bad....they always taste the same! I'm not really a fan of these but they're cute and easy to share!


One of the problems with eating at sushi trains is that you don't always know what everything is. I'm pretty sure this was some sort of raw fish with mayo on top and sauce (on the bottom??).
I had no idea what this was- sushi with prawn inside and covered with green stuff (I think it was seaweed). It was a more relatively intersting dish but didn't taste as interesting as it looked. It came with a sauce too but it tasted fine without it (I was too lazy to dip it in the sauce....)


I also have no idea what this was - some kind of minced fish (maybe?) with sauce. Whatever it was, it's so delicious, we take another dish.

Overall, we spent $48 for 7 people. It wasn't too expensive but certainly more than the Japanese restaraunts I usually go to at Eastwood. We probably could have eaten more, but we had to make sure that we had enough space in our stomachs for a midnight feast! (junkfood of course!)

Sushi Bay
Westpoint Shopping Centre
Shop 4002, Patrick Street
Blacktown NSW 2148

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Mid-Autumn Festival 2009 (mooncakes)


It's almost mid-autumn festival! Yep- I've been delaying this post for quite a while. But happy mid-autumn to everyone!!

I'll admit, I don't really know what mid-autumn festival is. I mean, why don't they celebrate mid spring or mid winter or mid summer?

To me mid-autumn festival means two things- lanterns and mooncakes. Lanterns because I used to play with them all the time when I was a kid-the battery powered blow up ones of course. And mooncakes because Asian groceries are always stocked with a billion different brands (and now flavours) of mooncakes before mid-autumn festival.

I never liked traditional mooncakes - I don't like lotus paste. But ever since I had my first snowskin mooncake a few years ago, I've fallen in love with them and now look forward to mid autumn festival. But good mooncakes can be ridiculously expensive. So this year, I made them myself rather than buying them. I have never tried to make snowskin mooncake before as we never had a recipe or the mooncake mould. But with the help of the internet and a brand new mooncake mould, I was able to make them. On the day after my first exam. Instead of studying for my next exam.

We used a recipe from a youtube video here. It's in Cantonese so both my mum and I could understand it - we were making these mooncakes together. Because being in the kitchen with my mum is awesomely fun! And, to me my mum is the best cook I've ever known (although I'm sure every thinks that about their mum)

Making mooncakes turned out to be extremely easy. We already had all the ingredients and it only involved a bit of mixing and shaping. And then have mooncakes! Making the 'custard' was quite fun- the custard mixture was heated in a pan and then after a couple of minutes, it magically turned into custard!!

The mooncakes tasted great (especially after we put them in the fridge) and were very very soft which is why they lost their shape so easily. However, they taste quite different to the store bought mooncakes. But definitely worth making!!

Custard Filled Snowskin Mooncakes

For the skin:

3 oz cooked glutinous rice flour
1 oz cornflour
2 oz sugar
1 oz butter
8 oz milk

1. Sift together the rice flour and corn flour. Set aside.
2. Heat the milk, sugar and butter together in a pan until very hot
3. Remove from heat and quickly mix it into the flour mixture. Continue mixing until it becomes a soft ball of dough then put in fridge to cool.

For the ‘custard’ filling:

1 oz plain flour
2 oz custard powder
1 oz corn flour
4 oz sugar
15 oz milk
2 eggs
1 oz butter

1. Mix the flours and sugars together in a mixing bowl. Mix the eggs into the flour mixture. Then mix the milk in.
2. Strain the mixture into a saucepan and add the butter. Heat the mixture, stirring continuously until it solidifies.
3. Cool the ‘custard’.

Assembling the mooncake:

1. Divide the custard filling into your desired number of portions(depends on the size of your mooncake mould)
2. Divide the mooncake skindough into the same number of portions
3. Roll the filling up into a ball. Roll out the ‘skin’ so that it is flat and wrap around the filling (it will bevery thin). Dust with extra cooked glutinous rice flour and then put in mould to shape.

Taa-daa! You have mooncakes!
Happy mid-autumn festival everyone!!
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