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Recipe : Dairy-Free Chicken, Bacon & Leek Pie

If you’ve been wondering where I have been lately, wonder no more.  3 words – TV, work and food.

I watched all 5 seasons of Downton Abbey within a week.  It was THAT good.  Netflix is awesome.  I’ve now started on the new season of Masterchef and one of the reasons why I really like it is that there is a Glaswegian amongst the finalists.  The accent is so comforting and reminds me of home.

I’ve been working like a dog…woof woof.  I’ve also been attending a lot of courses – for the CPD points as required by my profession.  And I’m also increasing my work hours and days which is good news for my bank account but bad news to my already limited free time.  Boohoo, right?!

Apart from glueing my eyeballs to the big box and slaving away at work, I have been STUFFING MY FACE!

chicken bacon leekpie

One of the yummy things I have eaten this week – TWICE ALREADY – because it was THAT yummy is this Chicken, Bacon & Leek Pie that I made.

It is so comforting and warm to eat.  Plus it is dairy free so perfect for lactose intolerant peeps like moi. Definitely a family favourite.  Totally delish!

Without further ado, here is the recipe.

Dairy-Free Chicken, Bacon & Leek Pie

A modified version of Family Chicken, Bacon and Leek Pie
Serves 4


1 tbsp olive oil
6 chicken thighs (around 750g, deboned, skinned and chopped into small chunks)
4 streaky bacon rashers (chopped)
1 leek (sliced into 1cm thick slices)
2 shallots (finely sliced)
1/3 cup plain flour
2 cups reduced salt chicken stock
4 large sprigs thyme (stalk removed)
2 tbsp fresh parsley (chopped)
ready rolled puff pastry
1 egg (lightly whisked)


1.  Heat oil in a large pan and brown the chicken pieces for 2 minutes.  Transfer to a plate.  Mix in the herbs.

2.  Add the bacon, shallots and leek to the same pan and cook for 5 minutes until the leek is softened and the bacon is slightly golden.  It will smell delicious already!

3.  Add the flour and cook, stirring for 30 seconds.  Remove the pan from the heat.  Gradually stir in the stock until well combined.

4.  Add the chicken and herbs back into the pan and cook for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Season with black pepper, if you wish.

5.  Transfer to pie dish.  Preheat oven to 220 degrees.

6.  Place puff pastry on top to cover the chicken mixture.  Depending on how large your pie dish is, you may need to use 2 pastry sheets.  Seal the edges by pressing down with a fork.  Use the fork to pierce the pastry all over.  Paint on the egg wash.  Bake for 20-30 minutes until puffed and golden.

Serve with mash potato and a side of veggies.

How To Make The Best Chinese Roast Duck Ever

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I love me some duck, I do!  

{ FUN FACT : “Duck” in Cantonese – pronounced as “ngap” – also means gigolo }

Anyway, my dear Mum taught me how to make the best Chinese roast duck ever!

Crispy skin on the outside and juicy meat on the inside!

And luckily for you, I made a video of the recipe and method of how to make it so you can make this delicious roast duck too!  { SUBSCRIBE TO OUR YOUTUBE HERE }

Maybe you can make this for your special someone for Valentines Day next week…?  Or Chinese New Year is coming up so why not pretend you’re Chinese { if you’re not already, that is! } and make this.

Just remember, it’s not one of those recipes which you can make on the same day.  You actually need to prep the duck and wait { patiently } for 3-4 days for it to be ready to be roasted!

If you aren’t a fan of videos, I’ve got the written version right here too 🙂  Don’t say I’m not good to you!


The Best Chinese Roast Duck Ever

An original recipe by Ling’s Mama

(Serves 2-4 people depending on how you serve it)


1 x duck (around 2kg+, thawed if frozen)

Half onion (sliced)
Knob of ginger (sliced)
4 cloves garlic (roughly chopped)
White bulb of spring onion (chopped)
1 x star anise
1 x cinnamon stick
2 x bay leaf

2 tbsp hoi sin sauce
1 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp five spice powder
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tsp sesame oil

3 bowls of water
3 tbsp white vinegar
1 tbsp maltose { sticky syrup }


1.  Remove duck innards and rinse duck with cold water

2.  Dry roast [A] in a pan until fragrant.  Allow to cool.

3.  Mix [B] together

4.  Combine [A] and [B] together and stuff everything into the duck cavity

5.  Use a skewer to sew the cavity together by threading in and out

6.  Boil [C] in a large pan or wok.

7.  With the mixture boiling, carefully lift up the duck by it’s neck and use a ladle to bathe the duck all over.  Repeat 10 times.  At this stage, the duck’s skin will be looking plump and shiny.

8.  Allow to cool before placing it in the fridge uncovered to dry out for 3-4 days.  The longer you leave it to dry out, the crispier the skin!

9.  On the day you are going to roast the duck, remove from the fridge and place on top of roasting rack with the breast side up.

10.  Preheat oven to 190 degrees.  Place in oven on the middle shelf.

11.  Let it roast for 60 minutes.  Open the door to have a look.  If the colour isn’t that roast duck red colour, put it back in for another 5-10 minutes.

12.  Remove from oven and let the duck rest for 15-20 minutes.

13.  Drain sauce from duck before chopping.  Save the sauce for noodles or make a gravy if you want.

14.  Chop it up and serve.

Personally, I love my roast duck with hoi sin sauce on dry noodles.  YUM!!!

#thebestchineseroastduckever – yep, it’s so good that it deserves its own hashtag! 😛

Lazy Ling Recipe : Asian Style Black Vinegar Pork Ribs

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One fabulous thing about watching a lot of TV cooking shows is that I believe I am a Masterchef by proxy.

{ Side note : I also watch America’s Next Top Model so I am a smizin’ & sizzlin’ supermodel by proxy too! }

I’ve learnt to wing it when I’m in the kitchen and throw random shizz into a pot with a dash of this and a spoonful of that…and sometimes, the results amaze me.  “Did I really just cook that??” { and sometimes, it’s like EWWW!! }

One of the yummy dishes I miraculously made is Asian Style Black Vinegar Pork Ribs – a little bit sweet, a little bit sour, a little kick of chilli and extremely more-ish.

I call this a Lazy Ling Recipe because it is essentially a one pot wonder and if you get the butcher to chop up your ribs, all you need is minimal food preparation.  #tooeasy


Asian Style Black Vinegar Pork Ribs

An original recipe by Ling { Masterchef by proxy extraordinaire }

(Serves 4… or 2 if you are hungry hippos)


1kg of pork ribs (chopped into 1.5 inch pieces)
1 cup black vinegar { I use Pun Chun Black Vinegar }
1/3 cup soy sauce { I use Kikkoman Soy Sauce }
1 cup water
2 lumps of rock sugar { I use Kambow Rock Sugar }
6 thick slices of ginger
4 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
2 bird’s eye chillies (finely chopped) { you can use less or deseed if you can’t handle too spicy or increase if you like it hotter }


1.  Place the ribs in a pot and add boiling water till all the ribs are immersed and simmer for 3-5 minutes before draining through a sieve and rinsing with cold water.  This removes the impurities and gets rid of that strong “what the pork?” porky smell.

2.  Return ribs to the pot and add all the ingredients and allow to simmer for around 45 minutes to an hour.  Give it a stir every 10 minutes or so just to make sure it doesn’t burn.  If it looks like the sauce is drying up too quickly, add 1/4 cup of water at a time.

3.  Before serving, skim off the fat and give it a taste test to tweak the flavours.  This means that if you find it too sour or too spicy, add brown sugar.  If it is not spicy enough, add more chillies.  If the sauce is too runny, mix in cornflour with water.

We think this is best eaten with plain rice with a side serve of choi { chinese vegetables }.  The sauce is more-ish and tastes yummy with boiled egg.  Leftovers for lunch the next day are even more delish as the sauce has more time to penetrate into marinade the meat!

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