I love mixing Western style desserts with Asian flavours and here I found a recipe from Just One Cookbook that combines that creamy and light French Crème Brûlée with Japanese Green Tea flavour for that slightly bitter tea note. Perfect!
Green Tea Crème Brûlée (adapted from Just One Cookbook)
360ml Thickened Cream
360ml Full Cream Milk
1 tbsp Green Tea Powder
5 Large Egg Yolks
100g Caster Sugar, plus 1 tsp for each serving
1. Preheat oven to 150°C.
2. In a medium saucepan, add the thickened cream, full cream milk, and sifted green tea powder and heat over medium heat. Stir the mixture often, until it’s very hot to touch but not boiling. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
3. Start to boil a kettle over the stove.
4. In a medium sized bowl, whisk the caster sugar and egg yolks until the mixture becomes pale in colour.
5. Add the milk mixture a bit at a time to the egg mixture, whisking vigorously so that you avoid cooking the eggs.
6. Once it has all been mixed together, place a sieve or a cheesecloth over a large bowl and strain the mixture.
7. Pour the strained mixture into 6 medium sized ramekins, then place the ramekins into a deep baking tray or pan.
8. Pour the boiling water into the baking tray or pan until the water comes up to halfway on the sides of the ramekins. Place the tray in the oven. Bake the crème brûlée for around 30 to 40 minute or until the crème brûlée is set when shaken but the middle still wobbles. Remove the ramekins from the oven and then allow to cool to room temperature before cling wrapping the ramekins and refrigerating for at least 2 hours (up to 3 days).
9. Take out the ramekins at least 30 minutes before caramelising the sugar on top. Then add one teaspoon of the caster sugar on top and move the ramekin around so that the sugar coats the entire top of the crème brûlée and discard any excess sugar. Using a kitchen blowtorch, melt the sugar until the sugar caramelises and browns. Leave the crème brûlée ramekins for at least 5 minutes before serving.
Moo Chi In Fusion has recently opened its doors on Johnston St in Fitzroy. Just minutes down from the bustle of Smith Street, this Asian Fusion restaurant impresses and entices you to stray away from the main streets of Fitzroy. Once you walk into the venue, you’re greeted with this spectacular artwork and friendly staff to boot.
The menu at Moo Chi has an interesting mix of entrees, salads, mains and desserts with some making a slight twist on the traditional dishes you might find elsewhere.
One of the popular items on their entrees menu is their Angry Bird, marinated ribs with their own spice mix served with some onions and herbs. The flavour in their chicken ribs is stunning. Perfect amount of spiciness, and even though I do enjoy a bit of spiciness if you can deal with pepper this is fine! I could probably have a few drinks and just this on its own for a meal.
Moo Chi’s Mini Moo Bun can be ordered in a few different choices. Starting with your choice of brioche or lettuce wrap (which I must try next time) and then your choice of filling of either pulled pork, fried tofu, soft shell crab or roast chicken. Being a fan of pulled pork that was a no brainer.
Deliciously tender pork with pickled vegetables and herbs that reminded me of a great coleslaw of sorts it goes great together and I’d definitely order that again.
Their mains selection leans towards the more Malaysian, Asian style of cuisine but I saw on the menu there was Seafood Spaghetti which I’m curious to try. The Chap Choy Curry is one of your vegetarian options and I love the creaminess of it. With a hint of spices, with vegetables cooked al dente that adds great texture to the dish.
The Kapitan Chicken Curry is a dry coconut curry (without sauce) with a hint of lemon grass. The chicken was cooked well and flavour-wise it wasn’t too creamy and the spices weren’t overpowering.
Their Singaporean Pork Spare Ribs is dressed with a sweet and sour sauce. The sauce at Moo Chi isn’t the same kind of sweet and sour sauce you may find in Chinese restaurants, and it has a more subtle sweetness and sourness to it. The pork pulls away easily and it’s not too fatty. I loved the how well the pork was cooked but I felt there was something missing from the sauce.
At Moo Chi, they have a few more Asian leaning desserts like Honeydew and Rockmelon Sago but also some Western style desserts like their Crème brûlée. Smooth custard with a crunchy top and served with a biscuit to enjoy it with. Not too sweet and has a nice vanilla taste to it.
I loved the Angry Bird and Mini Moo Buns and Moo Chi’s mains were flavourful and cooked with care. A real find in Fitzroy and I definitely recommend giving it a try.
Moo Chi In Fusion
72 Johnston St
Fitzroy VIC 3065
Mon – Closed
Tues to Thurs – 5:00 – 10:30 PM
Fri to Sun – Lunch 12:00 – 3:00 PM and Dinner 5:00 – 10:30 PM
*Opening hours current as at 7 December 2015
A La Bouffe on Toorak Rd, South Yarra is one of the many French restaurants around these parts of town. I was trying to pick a good one for a special occasion and was deciding between France Soir and A La Bouffe but saw a string of negative comments surrounding France Soir lately. Not particularly due to the food itself but the service being subpar. With A La Bouffe also offering a Lunch Specials menu where you can order two courses (a pick of Entrees, Mains and Desserts) for $27 or $35 with a glass of wine and coffee it seemed too good to pass up.
A La Bouffe is a small, stylish restaurant that feels cosy yet sophisticated. Their menu is extensive and although the lunch specials menu opts for a smaller selection from their menu, it offers a diverse range of meals to cater to all.
Feeling a bit lucky we ordered the Soup Of The Day (Soupe Du Jour), on the Sunday that we dined on they served an Asparagus Soup. Creamy, but more so subtle taste of asparagus that lingers on the tongue. A pleasant soup, and with a sprinkling of black pepper it makes it pop. The asparagus pieces still have some bite to them which adds texture. Some may prefer it to have a bit more salt seasoning on it, but I find that sometimes withholding salt makes for a very nice starter.
The Huîtres de Coffin Bay aka 3 Natural Oysters from Coffin Bay was fresh, and tasted like the sea. What appears to be a vinaigrette of some sort or a balsamic vinegar in the little cup isn’t something I’ve tried with oysters before. Interesting taste with it but probably wouldn’t do that again.
The Saumon De Tasmanie or otherwise known as Oven Baked Salmon with Crispy Potatoes & Pesto Vinaigrette was a lovely main course. I adore Pesto, it’s a fantastic marinade, flavouring, sauce etc because it’s just so fresh and having it with salmon always goes down a treat. The slight downside to the dish was I found the salmon to be a bit overdone, it was cooked all the way through. I definitely prefer my salmon to be a bit undercooked so the inside can slowly cook whilst you’re eating and then it won’t taste as dry. On the bright side, the salmon skin was extra crispy which was lovely. A fresh dish that was unfortunately let down by the salmon.
A La Bouffe’s Hachis Parmentier (French Sheppard Pie) comes out straight from the oven, steaming hot with a side of salad. I couldn’t quite tell what’s the difference from an English Sheppard’s Pie or any other countries version. The fluffiness of the mash potatoes was certainly the highlight, along with the cheesy top. The mince meat deep inside was flavourful, maybe a tad under salted (a bit of pepper would be great too). Very filling I must say.
The waiter recommended the Poulet Basquaise which is basically chicken cooked in a tomato, capsicum and garlic sauce served with a side of pesto mash. The tomato based soup was fantastic, packed full of flavour that worked so well with the chicken. I could really have that sauce on anything it was so good. Again, unfortunately it has a big downside, the chicken was definitely overcooked. I know sometimes restaurants like to be safer than sorry and especially with poultry but I don’t remember a time when I’ve ordered a piece of chicken that had been so dry. Luckily they were generous with the sauce as it was definitely needed to complement the chicken but it really shouldn’t happen in a place like this.
The pesto mash was stunning. Creamy, buttery and that pesto flavour just exploding in your mouth. A mash that I would like to find a recipe of because it was cooked to perfection.
For dessert we ordered the Crème Brûlée A L’orange & Cointreau. Translation, Crème Brûlée with orange and Cointreau that is torched on your table for that extra effect. For $15, it’s asking for a lot but it feels worth its price. The custard base is so silky smooth and creamy with the hint of orange flavour and the nice crunchy sugar topping gives it a nice crunch. One of the best Crème Brûlée’s I’ve tried but that’s not really saying much as I haven’t ordered that many before!
A La Bouffe’s dishes are tasty and might be worth it’s price for the lunch specials. Points are knocked off for the overcooked salmon and chicken. I could overlook one overcooked dish but two were definitely way over which was a bit disappointing. I’d like to say we dined on an off day as many diners have had better experiences that we have had but I really don’t know. The flavours of the dishes are highlights for me. Would I dine again? It’s a maybe for now.