3-Dish Dinner

My 3-dish dinner…

So, I am home for 2 days due to sickness (nothing too serious so no worries).  I felt better as the day wore on and was able to do some housework and then cook a proper dinner.

I hardly ever cook and when I do, it’ usually a one-dish meal, like the fried rice.  So you can see how special this dinner is to me…and hubby…and son 😛

So, what’s cooking?  Umm…pork ribs soup.  I know, I’ve done that before, even cooked it last evening, but it’s the easiest dish to cook and it has all the nutrients from ingredients like potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, onions and of course, pork ribs.  A dash of Chinese cooking wine, salt and soy sauce to taste completes the dish.

The Chinese stalls that sell this dish calls it the ABC soup, I always thought that’s because it’s a translation of the Chinese names for the main ingredients: A – ang chye tao (carrot) or it could be ang mo kio (tomato), B – bah kut (pork ribs), C – this is the tricky part…could be carrot or k(c)antang (potato).  However,  a search on the internet revealed that it’s called ABC soup because it has vitamins A, B, and C –

Vitamin A – Carrot
Vitamin B – Potato
Vitamin C – Onion

I think I like this version of the name explanation better 😉

ABC Soup - Pork ribs, tomatoes, carrots, potatoes and onions

ABC Soup – Pork ribs, tomatoes, carrots, potatoes and onions

Another dish which I’ve cooked before is the fried batang (Spanish mackerel) fish.  I hate frying fish or anything simply because the oil might splash and I could get scalded but withe the Happy Call pan, the oil doesn’t splash that much and you can always cover it up to avoid jumping hot oil 🙂

The only problem with using the Happy Call pan is that the fish will not be crispy.  It will be moist and juicy, not the way to eat fried batang, but I wasn’t going to take a risk with the wok 😛

Batang fish marinated with salt and light soy sauce

Batang fish marinated with salt and light soy sauce

Fish in pan

Fish in pan

Fish done

Fish done

The last dish is something new for me.  It’s a tomato-base mixed vegetable with potato and sausage.  I debated whether to add shrimps to the mixed vegetable or sausage but in the end, sausage won.

Onions, garlic and chili

Onions, garlic and chili

Add sausage and mixed veg

Add sausage and mixed veg



Add tomato ketchup and corn starch

Add tomato ketchup and corn starch

Two out of three dishes, and cut chili

Two out of three dishes, and cut chili


Verdict from son: Well, after texting me at 4pm to say he’s coming back at 5.30pm and he’s going out again soon, son got first taste of the dishes.  This is our conversation:

Me: “Is the mixed vegetable ok?”

Son: “Yes.”

Me: “Is the fish too salty?”

Son: “No.”

And as I was washing up, he finished eating so I said, “After so much time preparing and cooking, you only took 10 minutes to eat.”

“How long did it take for you to cook?”

“I started preparing at 3.30pm.”  (it was about 6pm this conversation took place)

“Whoa! So long?”  And he was out of the house in 10 minutes after leaving the dishes in the sink.

That’s my son.  Taking interest in cooking.  Asking me how to make salad, what vegetable to add to salad, what sauce to use…while I was still cooking. Yep, a chef in the making 😛  Just no dish-washing for him.  Uh-uh, that’s not him *rolleyes*

Verdict from hubby:  “Almost perfect, except for the soup which could’ve used a bit more salt.  Yesterday’s soup was nicer, why is today’s so bland?”  Well, maybe it’s because it’s cooked by a human, not a robot 😛

Yesterday’s 2-dish dinner:

2-dish dinner

2-dish dinner

ABC soup and what was supposed to be Japanese Oyakodon (chicken, egg, onion simmered in sauce and added to rice) but turned out like omelette 😛  I should’ve beaten the egg first before adding to the chicken and onion.  The egg is not supposed to be fully cooked, it’s supposed to be runny.  Oh well, at least hubby did like it.  Will try it again some other day.

In case you’re interested, I used soy sauce, mirin, a bit of sake (Japanese wine) which I have left in my fridge for god only knows how long :P, and sugar for the sauce (I don’t have dashi, a Japanese fish broth).

That’s all for my attempt at being a housewife 🙂  Leave me a comment or tips for cooking if you have some 🙂

5 thoughts on “3-Dish Dinner”

  1. Judy,

    Very nice try…but my fav cooking is not to cook…lol…2nd is to use store products with home made foods….and last choice is made frome scratch….

    My sister loves to cook and can make somehing from anything she has on hand…

    Take out is great…lol…

    hugs Joan

  2. Judy how much oil or grease do you cook with in the wok compared to the Happy Call Pan? or is the wok much hotter. if you are closing the lid on the pan the water is cooking out of the fish making it soft and not crispy…use little more oil…open pan off and on with pot holder gloves so as not to get burned by steam…and if that does not work add more heat to combo. unless you cover your fish in wok. hugs…v.

    • Thanks for your suggestions, V.

      More oil is needed for cooking in a wok. The Happy Call pan is non-stick so only a little oil is needed. And since it traps heat when covered, it cooks faster. The reason I use the Happy Call for the fish is because I don’t like the idea of oil splattering about when the fish is added to the wok. With Happy Call, there is hardly any splattering so it’s easy to clean.


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