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Restaurant Review – Amuse (Perth)

Published April 26, 2011 by Mary Jane

Okies, for our 3 year wedding anniversary Pandabear and I decided to opt for Degustations now I know from experience there ain’t many degustration restaurants in Perth. So I asked a few of my friends where they could recommend nice Degustation restaurants. Behold here’s the recommended list – Jacksons, The Loose box, Star Anise and then there was Amuse. So I went online and checked all of these restaurants. The Loose box caught my attention except it was a bit of a drive from our place and they usually get booked out quite quickly and knowing me, I’ve left it to the last minute to make a booking for the restaurant. So that ruled out The loose box. Jacksons, I’ve been there quite a few years ago and didn’t quite have a great time as I recall the waiters/waitress were quite snobby and the service was just not up to scratch so even though friends have told me they are much better now…I’m still hesitant to risk our anniversary night. So that ruled out Jacksons. So that leaves only Star Anise and Amuse….we decided to opt for Amuse as the degustation menu looked rather interesting and the price was rather reasonable $125 per person food only and if you want to accompany matched wines it’s $70 per person additional.

So I made a phone booking and the restaurant owner rang to confirm our booking and asked whether we had any dietry requirements, I said no “we eat pretty much everything”. So for wedding anniversary gift, Pandabear and I aint into much of a surprise so while we were in Switzerland we decided to purchase a matching Calvin Klein Switz watch for our wedding anniversary gift. Pandabear isn’t into flowers as he believe it’s a waste of money cos they’ll eventually die anyways. So he printed some yellow roses on a piece of paper for me 😛

When we arrived at the restaurant, it was rather strange as the restaurants was converted from a house into a restaurant so from the outside it looks exactly like a house except it has a sign called ‘Amuse’. The decor of the restaurant is rather plain. A few paintings on the wall, white table settings and the walls are painted in dark grey colours which made the restaurant look even darker (maybe it’s kinda like a romantic atmosphere they are trying to create).

human photo of me

human photo of me

The restaurant is run by husband and wife team Carolynne and Hadleigh Troy. Carolynne runs the front end of the restaurant and Hadleigh is the head chef in the kitchen. Anyways, the waitress/waiters were rather friendly – they sat us down to our table and our first course for the night was some interesting snacks on a stone board.

The waitress would describe the snacks to us – but I couldn’t exactly remember what they were, I was starving..and wanted to dig into the food straight away. All I could remember, there were bread sticks wrapped in prosciutto, some deep fried calamari rings, cinnamon tasting sticks, some savoury donut looking balls, some marinated shrimps on this thin crisp. Overall, I did enjoy our snacks they were rather interesting and tasty. We decided to order some mocktails.

Our mocktails were rather refreshing. If I remember correctly – Pandabear had some orange, apple and carrots mocktail and I had the cranberry, raspberry and mint mocktail. The waitress started off by bringing us some sour dough homemade bread in a stone bowl. I thought it was rather fancy that they sat the warm sour dough homemade bread in a stone bowl to keep the bread warm as the stones were heated up in the oven first. What a clever idea…

Our first official main course for the night was Crab, finger lime and sea lettuce. Interesting presentation. It was nicely balanced and quite a refreshing dish, I could have more of it for sure…

crab, finger lime and sea lettuce

crab, finger lime and sea lettuce

Our next dish was Beetroot, coffee and cocoa – when I heard this I knew straight away that Pandabear isn’t going to like this dish as he’s not a ‘beetroot fan’ the waitress was really thoughtful when she described what we were going to have she noticed Pandabear’s facial expression so she offered to change his beetroot dish into heirloom tomatoes instead.

Beetroot, coffee and cocoa

Beetroot, coffee and cocoa

Heirloom tomatoes, coffee and cocoa

Heirloom tomatoes, coffee and cocoa

Look the presentation of this dish was fantastic the chef was trying to create a mini vegie garden with beetroot growing out of the ground where the cocoa/coffee were representing edible soil. The colour combination was fantastic with some edible flowers and honey comb biscuits to give that extra crunch. However the flavour combination was not quite there. The cocoa/coffee was overpowering and the dish was a little bit on the sweet side for my liking. So I didn’t quite like this particular dish. It was interesting but not really tasty…as for Pandabear, he said he didn’t quite like his dish either so that makes the two of us…

Our next dish was Snapper, scallop and samphire – a seafood dish…

Snapper, scallop and samphire

Snapper, scallop and samphire

This dish was rather nicely done, the scallop was nicely seared and the snapper was perfectly cooked – tender and juicy and it went really well with their sauce…I really liked this dish..

Our next dish was pork, skirt and cucumber and I must admit it was one of my favourite dish for the night. The pork skirt was really tender and flavoursome with a nice crackling for a crunch effect and it was nicely complimented with marinated cucumbers for salad. Overall, the flavour was nicely balanced and I enjoyed it very much 🙂

Pork, skirt and cucumber

Pork, skirt and cucumber

Our next dish was Mushroom, hollandaise and egg yolk. The presentation for this dish was beautiful except the fact that this dish kinda reminds me of a brekkie dish and seemed rather out of place as it’s not usually served as a main course but rather it should be on a brekkie menu instead. The taste of it was ok, nothing spectacular.

Mushroom, hollandaise and egg yolk

Mushroom, hollandaise and egg yolk

Our next dish was Lamb, shallots and eggplant. Now out of all the meats, I dislike lamb as it usually has a ‘lamby taste’ but this particular dish they have marinated the lamb very well so I was able to enjoy this lamb dish. The colour combination for this dish was beautiful, it went really well with the sauce now as for the crust for the lamb cutlet – it was a rather odd black powdered crust which made the dish tasted a little on the bitter side, which kinda ruined it a little bit.

Lamb, shallots and eggplant

Lamb, shallots and eggplant

Then it was time for a pallet cleanser dish – Roselle, lemonade and bitters sorbet…

Roselle, lemonade and bitters

Roselle, lemonade and bitters

That concludes our main course for the evening so it was time for desserts. Our dessert dish is Mandarin, guava and passionfruit. This particular dish’s presentation was fantastic, when the waitress brought it to our table all you could see was this large blob of fairy floss and then he carried some mandarin juice and pour it in and it melted some of the fairy floss and you could see strips of guava and passionfruit inside the dish. What a clever idea, the taste combination was fantastic – I really enjoyed this particular dessert dish.

Mandarin, guava and passionfruit

Mandarin, guava and passionfruit

Our next dessert dish was Pistachio, chocolate and raspberries. The colour combination was fantastic, all you could see is each component distinctly placed together on a plate and you could notice which ingredients you were eating. I also enjoyed this particular dessert dish…

Pistachio, chocolate and raspberries

Pistachio, chocolate and raspberries

Then our final dessert dish arrived – Petit four, by that time both Pandabear and I was struggling to fit any more desserts into our tummy. There was lychee flavoured sugar squares, some truffle chocolates and marshmallow drops. To be honest they were all a little too sweet for my liking and maybe cos we were pretty full so by that time the desserts weren’t as tempting as the other ones..

Petit four

Petit four

Here’s my rating:

Dining experience: 4 star
Food experience: 3.5 star
Would I recommend it? Probably, for it’s dessert dishes

Overall, we were ok with this particular restaurant from all the awards they have won we really had a higher expectation when we stepped into the restaurant. Some dishes were quite nicely done but others were a little strange or should I say interesting for our liking. The dessert dishes made up for some of the savoury ones but it certainly didn’t give us a ‘wow factor’ in terms of its taste but rather the presentation of the dishes were excellent and it did created a ‘wow factor’ when the waitress brought out the dishes. Overall, the customer service was excellent – dishes came quite quickly and the waitress seemed to know what the dishes tasted like and were rather friendly too.

Comfort Food Recipe – Oven Baked Pork Ribs with Steam Vegies

Published March 6, 2010 by Mary Jane

Ok, it’s time for some comfort food recipe. This particular dish is pretty simple to make and it requires minimal preparation time except the marinating time. Its best to marinate your pork ribs for overnight or at least a few hours so that way when you bake it the flavour is soaked right into the meat. The marinate sauce is my own version – it has a chinese twist to it different to the pork ribs sold at Tony Roma’s or Hogs breath

So here it is…

Oven Baked Pork Ribs with Steam Vegies

Ingredients

3 x slabs of pork ribs
1 table spoon of hoi sin sauce
1 table spoon of char siew sauce
1 teaspoon of soya sauce
1 teaspoon of oyster sauce
1 corn
1 bunch of broccoli
2 eggs

Instructions

1. First you need to marinate the pork ribs, make sure you get lean ones from the butcher. Some might have lots of fats which is what you want to avoid. Mix all the sauces together and using your fingers rub the sauces into the pork ribs on both sides – it’s kinda like massaging the the ribs. Leave in the frige overnight with some glad wrap on top.

2. Next, pop the marinated pork ribs into the oven on 180 degrees about 15 minutes and turn over and continue baking for another 15 minutes. Now depending on the size of your pork ribs check it by poking it with a fork to make sure it’s cooked and that it’s crispy on the outside.

3. Time to steam your vegies. The best way to cook your vegies is to steam it rather than boil it as that way you keep all the nice nutrients inside the vegies. I use Tefal Aqua Steamer which I will do a review on. It’s brilliant!! So steam the broccoli, corn cobs and eggs.

4. To plate up make sure when you plate the pork ribs onto the plate there will be lots of juice, pour some juice on top of it so that the pork rib remains tender and juicy. Serve it with steamed broccoli, corn cob and some sliced eggs.

There you have it a healthy pork ribs dish that’s finger licking good 🙂

Enjoy…

Pork Ribs freshly out of the oven

Pork Ribs freshly out of the oven

Oven Baked Pork Ribs with Steamed Vegies

Oven Baked Pork Ribs with Steamed Vegies

Restaurant Review – Tony Roma’s

Published January 26, 2010 by Mary Jane

Happy Australia Day everyone 🙂 I have a feeling that everyone will be going out today to watch the fireworks, also some of my church friends will be out today giving out gospel tracts to everyone – I pray that it all goes well 🙂 Anyways, I really Thank God for allowing our family to migrate to Australia – it is indeed a land full of milk and honey. Australia is such a beautiful country, having lived in Perth most of my life I love Perth and I think it will probably the place where I will end up retiring when I hit the old age 🙂

Okies, time for some restaurant review. This particular restaurant was recommended by one of our friends – it’s well known for it’s steak and ribs. Now there’s not many good steak and ribs place in Perth so we were excited to try out this restaurant which is located near Woodside building.

We got there and the atmosphere seemed pretty family orientated – lots of family there and the waitress seemed pretty friendly. We started off by ordering some mocktails – they are fresh juices non-alchoholic very tasty. They come with very cute names – I think from memory – Funky Monkey and Tutti Fruity both comes with strawberry, pineapple, apple, orange and other fruits. Very refreshing. For entree, they gave us complimentary bread rolls that’s very nice of them and for mains I had ribs & steak combo and it comes with corn cobs and coleslaw and Pandabear wasn’t feeling too hungry so he just had ribs and chips.

The serving was huge, the ribs were very tender – they literally fell off the bones and I love the corn cobs very juicy 🙂 Pandabear thought his meal was pretty average cos he felt the ribs were a little bit charred. I agree I think our ribs were have been better if it wasn’t charred but the taste of the sauce was great 🙂

The dessert were great 🙂 we were so full from our mains so we thought we’ll share our dessert – we had Chocolate Avalanche which was layers of chocolate mudcake, cream and icecream with lots of fudge sauce. It was very rich but really yummy 🙂 we both enjoyed the dessert.

So here’s my rating:

Dining Experience: 3.5 star
Food Experience: 4 star
Would I recommend going: YES

I think overall the restaurant did well, the service was pretty good and I really wanted to go back and try the onion cob bread for entree apparently it’s really good…

Bread Rolls with butter

Bread Rolls with butter

Mocktail

Mocktail

Ribs & Steak combo with corn cobs and coleslaw

Ribs & Steak combo with corn cobs and coleslaw

Ribs and chips

Ribs and chips

Chocolate Avalanche

Chocolate Avalanche