10 Playfully Delicious Recipes to Spice Up Your Day

10 Playfully Delicious Recipes to Spice Up Your Day

Contrasts in textures, tastes and colors are what makes our meals memorable. Get inspired to whip up these polarized plates of deliciousness

1. Spicy Suan La Fen Soup Noodles

If spice alone is not enough to hold your attention, how about some sour spiciness? The distinctive taste of Spicy Suan La Fen Soup Noodles is what keeps its fans coming back for more each time. Traditionally made with chewy sweet potato noodle, each mouthful of this Chongqing dish sends an instant hit to your taste receptors, with that umami goodness of the soy sauce and the subtle sourness of the black vinegar taking hold before the numbing spice sets in. It makes for a light but unforgettable meal, and there’s nothing better than slurping up a bowl of these spicy sour noodles on a cold day.

2. Jackfruit Sago

Soothe that burning tongue with a generous spoonful of Jackfruit Sago, and you’ll realize it’s not just all cloying sweetness in this creamy dessert. Savory salty pistachios meet mildly sour sweet jackfruit in this delicate treat, which has layers of nutty spiciness to keep the interest going as you process each bite slowly. It’s a perfect antidote to spicy Sichuan dishes, and is infused with tropical flavors that beat a traditional Crème Brûlée any day. 

3. Cheesy Baked Eggplant Cigars

Gooey on the inside with a lovely golden crunchy cheese crust on top, these Cheesy Baked Eggplant Cigars are guaranteed to be the delight your family at your next dinner. Savory protein rich mushroom and chicken filling is encased in a soft eggplant shell, before being baked to crispness over the top and sides, while still remaining soft and moist on the inside. They are good enough for a one-pan meal, but you can pair it with a refreshing side salad for some juicy crunch.

4. Hotteok (Korean Sweet Dessert Pancake)

Don’t we all love it when we sink our teeth into a Hotteok (Korean Sweet Dessert Pancake), and discover its sticky sweet contents? The lovely chewy dough is made possible with glutinous rice flour, which is fried to give it a nice light char on the outside. These little warm pancakes are so comforting to hold on a rainy day – enjoy the nutty aromas and as you devour this treat in a few chewy bites

5. Healthy Beetroot Soup

An eye-catching red and white soup will surely capture the attention of any hungry family member. Beetroots are a great source of fiber, potassium, folate and vitamin C, and turning this root vegetable into this bright Healthy Beetroot Soup is a great way to get the kids to enjoy their daily dose of vegetables. Swap out the chicken stock for vegetable stock for a vegetarian version of this recipe, and pair it with some garlic baguette for a filling lunch break!   

6. Mochi Donuts

Want a snackable version of donut? These Mochi Donuts could just be the ideal sweet rewards for you, best enjoyed shortly after they emerge from the deep fryer. Unlike traditional western donuts, these sweet round balls are crispy on the outside, while stretchy and sticky on the side – thanks to the glutinous rice flour batter. Roll them around in plain, spiced (with nutmeg and cinnamon) icing sugar and they are ready to be popped into your mouth!

7. Fattet Batenjen

Start your mornings off with a hearty Fattet Batenjen, and stave off those mid-afternoon hunger pangs. This easy casserole dish combines starchier vegetables like eggplant, chickpeas and tomatoes to give the dish a heavier mouthfeel that will fill you up in no time. Super crunchy fried bread loaves balance out the soft eggplants and creamy sesame yogurt sauce well in this vegetarian dish that is best paired with steaming white rice

8. Banana Turon

Oozy, piping hot plantain mix reveals itself when you crunch through the exterior of these addictive Banana Turons. It’s an immensely popular street snack in Philippines, and often enjoyed with a generous scoop of ice cream to reward the senses with a hot and cold contrasting sweetness. This recipe allows you to create Banana Turons in two different ways – satisfying both traditional Turon fans and chocolate lovers alike.

9. Chicken Curry Steak with Rujak Sauce

Rujak sauce, a gravy made out of tamarind, shrimp paste and palm sugar adds a sourish tang to the otherwise earthy chicken curry steak. It takes the heaviness out of the rich curry, allowing you to appreciate the spicy concoction slowly without feeling jelak (nauseous from eating excessively creamy foods). Pair your Chicken Curry Steak with Rujak Sauce with some fragrant white rice to soak up all that lovely sauce!

10. Indonesian Cendol (Es Dawet)

Chendol or Indonesian Cendol (Es Dawet) is such a fun, customizable dessert to indulge in that it’s become a default post-dinner treat for many Asians, especially in Indonesia and Malaysia. Crunchy jackfruits are mixed in with soft, chewy tapioca jelly (cendol jelly) in this cooling dessert, topped off with creamy coconut milk and palm sugar syrup for that extra sweetness!

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