Cooking a 3-Course Meal with S&P Santan!

soup ceera

I was fortunate enough to be cooking a complete meal of three courses organized by S&P Santan in Sungai Buloh. The I <3 S&P Santan Cooking Workshop is helmed by Chef Andri Hadi – a very interesting character indeed!

chef andri hadi

I was teamed up with Ceera Noh and I have to admit I couldn’t ask for a better partner. She has solid, practical skills as a mom and seasoned a lot of our dishes to perfection.

team

I was more focused on plating and I tried very hard not to let her down by doing it professionally.

cutting onions

I dare say that our presentation was best – it wasn’t clownish and kid-like on one side of the spectrum it wasn’t sloppy on the other (did three plates for our main course before I was satisfied).

team awesome

The I <3 S&P Santan Cooking Workshop is actually a contest between all the participants. There were 5-6 teams of two in total. I humbly named us “Team Awesome”. smirk

Appetizer: Spinach Broccoli Coconut Soup

appetizer

The first dish that we cooked. I sliced up the broccoli florets and garlic while Ceera did the vegetable soup stock. We didn’t cook the fresh baby spinach but blended it into the soup later, as the chef did.

ceera hb

I also went up to do the Massimo Wheat Germ garlic bread.

butter garlic bread

It’s really easy, just butter one side with butter and twist it, sealing it in with another dab of butter.

spinach broccoli

I love the ease of the S&P Santan Instant Coconut Cream Powder. It comes in 50 gram packs of Original, Omega 3 and Pandan and we used the first for this. You can dilute it with 1 cup of water for heavy coconut cream or 2 cups of thin coconut cream but for this recipe, we just poured it into the saucepan and seasoned it with salt, pepper and nutmeg. I really liked how versatile and convenient the product was.

cooking with ceera

We worked pretty well as a team and since I proofed myself somewhat adept (at least I didn’t burn down the kitchen) – I plated up. Our spinach broccoli coconut soup is a real French style soup – thick and hearty.

layering soup

I floated a tablespoon of S&P Santan Coconut Milk on top for contrast and flavor.

spinach broccoli soup

It received pretty good reviews from the chef and heartened, we moved on to the next dish.

Entrée: Baked Cajun Chicken Wings

entree

This is something that both of us knew how to do and the chef did a demonstration while asking us to work at the same speed – no problems there.

fritter batter

We shared an oven with another group of two girls and thus we put in our chicken together. There is a great irony somewhere here.

cajun chicken

I carefully arranged my chicken wings so that the tips were facing *outside* on the baking tray. This is done so that the heat of the convection oven won’t burn the meat.

perfect wings

Unfortunately, we didn’t know that the oven hasn’t been pre-heated and when the chef came over to everyone’s station to look at their chicken, ours was the very best in the entire class. It’s browned to perfection!

cooking ceera

We made the Coconut Pandan Cheese Sauce with Blue Key Superfine Flour, S&P Pandan Santan Coconut Cream Powder and 2 tbsp grated cheddar cheese. Both Ceera and I tasted the sauce and it was good – I made sure that sufficient time has passed so that any raw flour has been “cooked out”.

coconut milk cheese

I plated the chicken in a smear of the coconut pandan cheese sauce and stood two chicken wings up, supported by each other.

same oven

…and when it came judging time, it turns out that our chicken was raw. -_-

chef andri

It needed 3 more minutes in the oven due to the lack of pre-heating (we both thought the other team had done it).

judging

Oh well.

cajun chicken wings

Here’s our dish!

Dessert: Cavendish Coconut Fritters

dessert

I learned a very nifty trick during the I Love S&P Santan Cooking Workshop. Banana fritters tastes a lot better if you dip it alternately into batter and desiccated coconut. We used 1 cup of S&P Santan Sejati Desiccated Coconut and 1 cup Blue Key Superfine Flour for the dry coating. The desiccated coconut really comes in handy as it has a longer shelf life and comes in a convenient pack.

bananas

We actually learned from the previous mistake and made sure to make two batches. I sliced up one banana for the first test batch while Ceera did the second batch.

coating fritters

Our Cavendish Coconut Fritters were deep fried for 2 minutes in boiling hot oil before we plated up in front of the judge.

deep fryers

I did the plating and I had planned to do a quenelle of vanilla ice cream to show off my skills.

banana fritters

Unfortunately, the ice cream was way too solid and despite heating two ceramic Chinese soup spoons on the burner, I could barely make a passable quenelle. I’m glad I did it though, no one else did and I saw from the blank looks that not many knew what a quenelle is either (except for the chef, of course).

hot spoon

I also finished with a flair with some toasted desiccated coconut and a smear of caramel and passed it to the judge. We were the first team to finish.

quenelle

Although we didn’t win anything (the winner was a female duo from Weibo) it was fun to cook with someone with a Malay heritage and a practical background as opposed to my more recent and modern interpretation of cuisine. Ceera was the one who seasoned and tasted everything and I felt bad that we didn’t win.

cavendish fritters

Nevertheless, it was a fun morning and afternoon learning about the various uses of S&P Santan products. Coconut oil and milk is a source of healthy HDL cholesterol and has numerous health benefits. This is something that Australians and people from the United States are finding out and they’re using more coconut milk in their cooking. The S&P Santan products are easy to use and cater for health conscious consumers as they do not contain artificial preservatives and flavorings.

fritters

It’s a very trendy ingredient and I have a whole range of S&P Santan products at home now. I’ll share more when I cook soon!

keep calm

Do you have your own recipes using S&P Santan coconut milk? Share your recipes at the S&P Industries Facebook page and win more than RM 1,900 worth of prizes!

spinach soup

Thanks to S&P Santan and Chef Andri Hadi for a great time! A big thank you to FFM Marketing for providing the superb venue – I loved the clean and well-equipped kitchen islands. It’s open for rental too – contact marketing@ffmb.com.my or 03-61457888 for enquiries.

spinach leaves

Props to Denise and Michele for their tireless photography and cheers to my team-mate Ceera Noh for being awesome! :)

Klebang Original Coconut Shake

klebang coconut shakes

This is a truly remarkable drink – one where people are willing to line up under the hot sun or even in rain for. Klebang Original Coconut Shake is located in Melaka – it’s named after the street it’s on (Jalan Klebang).

malaysia famous coconut shake

There’s constantly a queue at the small takeaway kiosk whenever we passed it during a road trip yesterday. The kiosk is for takeaways only to free up the main arena for dine-in customers.

melaka original coconut shake

Klebang’s Original Coconut Shake truly deserves the “famous” moniker as the sit-down area is huge, as big as a sports stadium and packed full of people. The car park is equally impressive and despite the constant rain and drizzle, people still come in for a fix.

melaka famous coconut shake

The shake is ingenious – it’s basically an ice blended coconut drink but everything in there is made of coconut. They take coconut water, coconut flesh and ice cubes to blend it all together.

klebang original coconut shake

Thus, you’ll taste coconut water and bits of the shredded flesh as well as you go through it with the spoon and straw it’s served in.

famous melaka shake

Klebang’s Coconut Shake must go through tons of coconuts every day and I know from observation that they go through several large boxes of vanilla ice cream in a couple of minutes. The “special” version of the coconut shake comes with a full, generous scoop of vanilla ice cream and it adds a lot to the taste of the shake.

The place does such a brisk business that it’s almost like an assembly line:

coconut cutting

1. There’s a place were the coconuts are opened and prepared – juice/water drained and then the flesh extracted by cutting the coconuts into half

blending station

2. The coconut water and flesh goes to the blending station where it’s ice blended with ice and then loaded into a funnel-like device to churn the blend into a waiting chilled glass.

prep station

3. The glasses are then sent into the prep station where it’s either sent out as it is or supplemented with a large scoop of vanilla ice cream for the special version.

coconut shake special

The end result is a delicious coconut shake made almost entirely of coconut and it only costs RM 1.70. The special version with a scoop of vanilla ice cream costs RM 2.20 – 50 cents more and I feel that adds a lot to the taste – imparting a creaminess than one would usually associate with the word “shake”.

nasi lemak

The place is quite well known for it’s nasi lemak too but it didn’t work for me – it has wonderfully spicy sambal which makes my mouth water just thinking about it and it’s warm, but I’ve had better. It’s good for the main coconut shake business though, since you’ll need something to put out the fiery sambal. ;)

coconut shake stations

However, the Klebang Original Coconut Shake is a must visit when you’re in Melaka. It has grown a lot since the days and some might say it’s a tad commercialized with menus in three (3) different languages but that still doesn’t change the fact that it’s a great product to begin with.

klebang original coconut shake special

They haven’t slacked off since the last time I came several years ago either – each glass of coconut shake is done to perfection and I love how they use chilled mugs even with the rush of a sudden influx of people (which is why you have to queue in the takeaway section). It’s also affordable (most brewed drinks in KL costs way more than that even in regular diners) which is part of the appeal.

kelebang coconut shake

I was transfixed at a man in his twenties taking off his helmet and coming in out of the rain to savor Klebang’s Original Coconut Shake by slowly and tentatively sipping the iced concoction using the spoon. He caught me looking several times and gave me a puzzled look, for me, he symbolizes why this place is so popular. :)

Guide to eating a Top Off coconut

top off coconut array

The Top Off coconut experience is commonly available in food
courts…it’s the shrink wrapped coconuts at the drinks counter with
the top partially serrated for easy opening. It’s a very user friendly
coconut.

top off coconut

It comes in several varieties – a fully green one (skin on) which
tastes a little tart, a mostly skinned white one which has a sweeter
content, and the Thailand variety which is a small, fully skinned
coconut. I have had all of them, and my personal preference is the
partially skinned one.

top off coconut unwrapped

The whole coconut is covered with shrink wrap – including the top of
the coconut. You need to remove the shrink wrap before the coconut can
be consumed. The removal of shrink wrap goes according to user
preference – I tend to just tear off the top of the shrink wrap.

top off coconut open

Next, you use the side of the provided standard spoon to remove the
“cover” of the coconut. The easy way to do this is to analyze the
partial factory cut top for the largest point of possible entry and
wedge the side of the spoon (the thin side) down, before using leverage
to “scoop” the whole top back up.

top off coconut opened

It should look like this after that step is completed. Do not, under
any circumstances, allow the top of the coconut to fall back into the
coconut. It should also be noted that this is the most difficult part
of the process, as there is a distinct possibility of causing a faux
pax by twisting too hard and spilling coconut juice all over the place.

top off coconut top

The user may proceed to use the spoon to separate the coconut flesh
from the now separated top for consumption. The flesh of the coconut is
edible, and the top of the coconut contains a significant amount of
coconut flesh…this should be appreciated by eating said coconut flesh
from the top.

top off coconut drink

The next step is to insert the (provided) plastic straw into the
open coconut receptacle. The coconut juice can be sipped straight from
the coconut. Optionally, the spoon can be used to harvest more coconut
flesh from the inside of the coconut. It is important to remember that
the entire internal circumference of the coconut is coated with coconut
flesh…which is edible.

top off coconut scoop

The coconut juice should appear as a clear liquid, unless the
coconut has been disturbed in any way (e.g. internal flesh scooped for
consumption, vigorous stirring etc). Do not be alarmed if the coconut
juice turns murky. This is perfectly normal and the coconut remains safe for consumption.
The color change is caused by cross contamination from the coconut
flesh, but this is not as bad as it sounds…since the flesh is edible.
Certain connoisseurs also appreciate murky coconut juice. I reiterate –
murky coconut water is perfectly fine.

top off coconut ice

There is an option of adding ice to the coconut for a chilled
coconut drink. The user does this at the risk of diluting the coconut
juice. Coconut connoisseurs frown at this practice, but it is
widely…er, practiced for a colder drinking experience.

Enjoy your coconut.

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