4 Easy Recipes for Frequent Travelers During the COVID-19 Lockdown

Staying at home may not be something that frequent travelers can easily adjust to during this COVID-19 period. After all, you are used to waking up in another city, exploring the local food and culture and all of the sudden, you are now confined to the 4 walls of your own home.

I have been spending my time in the kitchen and if you would like to learn to cook and take the opportunity to reminisce the good time traveling, here are 4 easy recipes that could transport you back to your travel memories.

Bring yourself back to Hong Kong, Japan, Austria or Thailand!


Homemade Hong Kong Egg Tarts

Egg Tart and Hong Kong Milk Tea at a local “Cha Chaan Teng” vs making your own Egg Tarts and Milk Tea at home

Don’t you miss that flaky, buttery egg tart at a down-to-earth, no-frill cha chaan teng, coupled with the silky sweetened milk tea and having all th time in the world to people-watch?

Now you can make your own egg tart (tastes similar to the famous Tai Cheong ones) and listen to Canto-pop at home.

Homemade Hong Kong Egg Tarts

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print
Credit: Annelicious


For Pastry
  • 140g Plain Flour
  • 1 tbsp Icing Sugar
  • 1 Egg Yolk
  • ½ Egg White
  • 75g Salted Butter
For Filling
  • 75g caster Sugar or fine sugar
  • 75g Hot Water
  • 2 Whole Eggs
  • 125ml Fresh Milk
  • ¼ tsp Vanilla Extract
  • A pinch of salt


For Pastry
  1. Cream butter with icing sugar, egg yolk and egg white. I’m using hand-held mixer.
  2. Add in flour and mix well. Once it is well mixed, using hand, press the mixture together and form a dough. If the dough is too wet or oily, do add some flour. Give it a few knead. But don’t over-work the dough.
  3. Wrap the dough in a clingwrap. Put it into the fridge for 10 to 15mins to let it cool.
  4. Take the dough out of the fridge. Cut pastries into 6 equal portion. The individual dough should weight about 38 grams each.
  5. Roll individual dough into a ball. Using both palm, press the pastry ball into a flat piece. Line dough in the middle of tart cases, lightly press the dough into the tart cases.
  6. Refrigerate the tart cases for 30mins, and it is ready to use.
For Filling
  1. Add caster sugar into hot water, mix until sugar completely dissolved. Set aside and let it cool.
  2. Beat eggs with milk, vanilla essence and salt. Pour in sugar water. Mix well.
  3. Sift egg mixture TWICE to achieve smooth egg mixture.
  4. Carefully pour egg mixture into each tart shells.
  5. Bake tarts for 25mins at 180 degree, fan ON.


Japanese Katsu Curry Don

The curry rice is a comfort food that instantly brings you back to the hustle and bustle of Tokyo. [Left photo credit: Reddit]

Curry don is apparently a meal staple for local Japanese. With the prevalence of Japanese produce and availability of Japanese curry roux in Singapore, this dish is not difficult to replicate.

Japanese Katsu Curry Don

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: easy
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For Curry
  • 2 Potatoes
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 75g Salted Butter
  • 1 tsp chopped garlic
  • 500 ml water
  • Half box of store-bought curry roux
For Tonkatsu
  • ¾ cup panko
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Boneless pork loin chops
  • 1 tsp kosher/sea salt (use half for table salt)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour (plain flour)
  • 1 large egg


For Curry
  1. Peel dice potatoes and carrots, set aside.
  2. Peel and dice the onions.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium heat and cook the chopped onion and a tsp of chopped garlic first.
  4. After cooking the onion and garlic – when onion slices look a bit translucent, add the carrot and stir.
  5. Add the potato and sautee all together for a couple minutes then pour the water into the pot.
  6. Bring it to boil, put the lid on, and simmer for about 10 minutes. Turn the heat off and add curry roux.
  7. Dissolve the curry roux in and put the pot back on low heat and bring it to simmer. Simmer for about 5 minutes then turn the heat off.
For Tonkatsu
  1. Marinate the pork loin chops with salt, pepper, light soy sauce and corn flour.
  2. Combine the panko and a tsp of olive oil.
  3. Dredge each pork piece in the flour to coat completely and pat off the excess flour. Then dip into the beaten egg and finally coat with the toasted panko. Press on the panko flakes to make sure they adhere to the pork.
  4. Air fry the pork chops at 200C for about 15 minutes, flipping to the other side half way.
  5. Once curry and tonkatsu are prepared, serve them with a bowl of rice.


Wiener Schnitzel and Potato Salad

The huge Wiener schnitzel is a signature dish. Wouldn’t it be great to enjoy this with an apple spritzer accompanied by Johann Strauss II’s “The Blue Danube” as the background music right at home?

The Viennese cutlet (or the “Wiener schnitzel”) is one of the best known specialties in Vienna and a must-have when visiting this beautiful city. The schnitzel is often served with a potato salad which can be easily prepared at home.

Airfried Wiener Schnitzel paired with Austrian Potato Salad

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


For Schnitzel
  • Pork escalope (or loin or veal)
  • Austrian fine bread crumbs
  • Corn flour
  • Egg
  • Salt
For Potato Salad
  • Potatoes
  • 1 tbsp White vinegar
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • 1 tsp Oil
  • Chopped onions
  • Chives


For Schnitzel
  1. Tenderize the pork till they are about 1cm thick. Cut some small slits around the sides of the meat.
  2. Beat an egg on a bowl and add a little bit of milk to the mix.
  3. Season the pork with a few pinches of salt.
  4. Roll the pork in corn flour, then dip it in egg mix. Lastly, roll it in the bread crumbs.
  5. Preheat air fryer at 200deg Celsius for 3 minutes.
  6. Place the schnitzel pieces in the air fryer basket and spread some olive oil on the surface of the meat.
  7. Cook the schnitzel at 200deg Celsius for 10 minutes.
  8. Then, flip the schnitzel, spread oil on the other side and cook for another 4 minutes.
  9. Optional – serve schnitzel with lemon slices.
For Potato Salad
  1. Cook the potatoes in a pot of salted water.
  2. Peel the skin of potatoes after they are cooked and slice them. Set aside with diced onions.
  3. In a bowl, mix water, vinegar, sugar and salt.
  4. Then mix into the potatoes and stir. Drizzle oil.
  5. Add some chives or parsley for additional flavour and garnish.


Thai Basil Pork Rice

You can almost find Thai Basil Pork Rice in any local eateries and restaurant. Rehash this dish to relive your happy moments in the Land of Smiles! [Left photo credit: Took Lae Dee]

There is something about the taste of Thai Basil that reminds you of Bangkok and their amazing array of street food. And the Thai Basil Pork Rice (Pad Krab Pow Moo) is almost a national dish of its own right!

Thai Basil Pork Rice

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print
Credit: Scrummy Lane


  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp kecap manis (or alternatively 1 tbsp soy sauce and 1 tsp of sugar)
  • 1 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 4 tbsp water
  • Chopped fresh long beans
  • 3-6 small red chillis – de-seeded and chopped finely
  • 4 cloves of minced garlic
  • 200g minced pork
  • A large handful of Thai Basil
  • Directions

    1. Mix together the fish sauce, soy sauce, kecap manis, oyster sauce and water in a bowl or jug and set aside.
    2. Heat up a large drizzle of oil in a wok or stir-fry pan, then stir-fry the green beans for a few minutes. Add the chopped chillis and garlic and stir-fry for a couple more minutes.
    3. Add the pork and stir-fry until cooked (an additional few minutes). Pour in the sauce, stir well, then let bubble for a minute or two more.
    4. Stir in the basil until wilted, then serve with the rice and a fried egg.

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