Saturday, January 18, 2020

Cook: Pineapple Tarts



This year, besides attempting the easy cornflakes cookies (recipes can be found here if interested), I have decided to attempt pineapple tarts as well. Actually I have made it once when I was in Singapore using store bought pineapple paste but the previous recipe for the outer crust that I tried was not ideal. 

I tried another recipe this time and it turns out to be much better and this is a keeper. The pineapple tarts tasted much better the next day after you bake so do prepare it at least one day in advance.

INGREDIENTS (makes 36 tarts):

For pineapple paste:
1. 2 fresh pineapples
2. 5 tablespoon of sugar (amount can be adjusted to suit your taste)

For the crust:
1. 150g unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
2. 210g all purpose flour
3. 15g cornflour
4. 25g white sugar
5. 25g milk powder
6. 1 medium egg
7. 1/4 teaspoon of salt

METHODS:

For pineapple paste:
1. Cut the pineapple into chunks
2. Blend the chunks
3. Sieve the pineapple and remove as much water as you could (I kept the juice and serve as fresh pineapple juice :P)

4. This part will take time. Place the sieved pineapple into a pan and cook on medium low heat until the paste thickens and turns brownish as shown. 


5. Then let it cool down and roll them into little balls, I then placed them into fridge until I am ready with the crust.


For the crust:
1. Cream the butter with until it is light and fluffy.
2. Next, add in the salt and egg. Mix well.
3. Add in the flour, cornstarch and milk powder, mix well.
4. Then using hand, I roll the dough together. 


5. If the weather is hot, the dough might be a bit sticky at this point of time. If that happens, keep the dough in fridge for 30 minutes before working on them.
6. When you are ready, roll the dough into a tiny circle and place the pineapple paste inside. Roll them into ball shaped.
7. Apply egg wash using pastry brush.
8. Bake for 12-15 mins until the egg wash turns golden in oven preheated to 180 degree celcius.


9. Remove from oven and let it cool down before placing them into airtight container. 
10. Remember to enjoy them after at least 8 hours/ overnight for best enjoyment.


Cook: Crispy Honey Cornflakes for Chinese New Year

Required ingredients
Chinese New Year is just around the corner. This is the first year we are celebrating it in Dubai. Besides digging out my previous recipes for Chinese New Year cookies, I thought I should try out something new. I have finally muster my courage to try pineapple cookies (making it from scratch nonetheless-recipes to be uploaded soon) and also make some easy seaweed crisp.

Today I will be sharing another easy treats and this is really easy and I even involve the kids in helping to have more Chinese new year mood. By the way. it only involves 4 ingredients and all can be purchased easily in Dubai. 

It turns out to be a hit in our household, getting thumbs up from all.

INGREDIENTS (make 80 cookies):

1. 260g corn flakes
2. 180g honey
3. 170g salted butter 
4. Some sprinkles (optional)

METHODS:

1. Melt the butter and honey in a pan.


Getting some help from Qin Qin
2. When all the butter melted and the mixture starts bubbling, remove the pan from heat.


3. Next, add the cornflakes and mix well.


4. Then scoop the cornflakes and place them into mini cupcake film.




5. Finally, add some sprinkles to make it more colourful. Kids love the sprinkles!


6. When its all done, place them into preheated oven at 150 degree Celcius and bake for 5 minutes.


7. Remove from oven, let it cool down and enjoy!

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Cook: Fried Sticky Rice Cake (年糕)

Deep fried sticky rice cake

Sticky rice cake is a tradition during Chinese New Year and I have yet explored how to make it since it is easily available in Asian countries over Chinese New Year period. Since moving to Dubai, I have explored many new recipes and it is actually very easy to make and only require 3 ingredients. 

I have made it and it was a success, it is not too sweet just the way I like it. If you would prefer it sweeter, do increase the amount of brown sugar.

I will share two recipes, one to make the sticky rice cake and one is recipe for the batter if you like it deep fried. Having share that, it is also yummy to just eat on its own :)

INGREDIENTS:

For the sticky rice cake:
1. 454g of glutinous rice flour (1 lb)
2. 1 1/4 cups of brown sugar
3. 2 1/4 cups of water
4. 2 tablespoon of oil

For the batter:
1. 60g of plain flour, sifted
2. 60g of rice flour, sifted
3. 1/4 teaspoon of ground turmeric powder (optional)
4. 3/4 cup of water
5. 1 teaspoon of baking powder
6. 1/4 teaspoon of salt 
7. 1/2 cup of white sesame seed (optional)

METHODS: 

For the sticky rice cake:
1. Place the brown sugar into the water and put it on low heat. Once the sugar is dissolved, remove from heat and let the mixture cool down to room temperature.
2. Once the sugar mixture has cooled down, add sieved glutinous rice flour into the mixture bit by bit and mixing it in gradually.
3. Pour the mixture through a sieve to remove the clumps and add the oil. 
4. Mix the oil into the mixture and steam for 50 minutes. 
5. Place a stick into the rice cake after 50 minutes, if it comes out more or less clean, the rice cake is ready. 
6. Remove from steamer and let it cool down to room temperature. Then place into the fridge overnight to firm up.

For making the batter:
1. Add plain flour, rice flour and turmeric powder into a mixing bowl, gently mix them up.
2. Add water and mix it evenly. 
3. Then add in baking powder and salt and mix them in. 
4. Lastly, stir in the sesame seed.

For making the deep fried rice cake with sweet potato:
1. Slice the sweet potato and rice cake into thin slice.
2. Sandwich a piece of rice cake in between two slices of sweet potato.
3. Dip in the batter and deep fried until golden.
4. Serve warm.



Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Cook: Russian Honey Cake

Melt in your mouth honey cake
Have a piece :)
Honey cake is new to me. I was only recently introduced to them after moving to Dubai. They are really popular and sold widely from supermarket to bakery. Having a piece of them is really good, the sweetness of honey complemented the sour cream mixture that goes between the layers. You have to try it to know it. However, the honey cake sold in retail are really sweet and I usually could only eat half a piece at a time....

I was contemplating on making my own for the longest time because it is not really straightforward. I will need to first take the biscuit layers piece by piece and then assemble them with the cream and let it set in the fridge so that the cream moisture can be absorbed into the cookies, rendering them soft and melt in your mouth. 

Anyway, it was a long school holiday break and I decided why not go for it. The results was great although when I first assemble them, it looks so bad that I thought it was going to fail but after waiting for one night, I was surprised- a good surprise that is.... I receive many good feedbacks on them but I don't think I will be making it anytime soon. Too much work to do but nevertheless, it is a good recipe to keep.

INGREDIENTS:

For the biscuit layer
1. 4 tablespoon of honey
2. 1/3 cup of granulated sugar
3. 2 tablespoon of unsalted butter
4. 4 medium eggs, beaten using a fork
5. 1 teaspoon of baking soda
6. 3 cups of plain flour

For the cream layer
1. 800ml of sour cream
2. 1.5 cups of icing sugar
3. 200ml of heavy whipping cream

METHODS:

Preparing the biscuit layer
1. Add sugar, honey and butter into a saucepan.
2. Slowly melt them on low heat until the sugar dissolved. 


3. Once the sugar is dissolved, remove the saucepan from the heat and add in the beaten egg slowly. Whisk the eggs into the mixture promptly to prevent the egg from becoming scrambled egg. Do it in small batches, 1-2 teaspoon at a time. 
Add in the eggs slowly
4. Once all the eggs are in, add in the baking soda and mix well. 
5. Next fold in the flour until the dough does not stick to your hand. 
6. Roll the dough out while still warm and cut them into 8 equal parts.
Dough
7. Take one part and roll them into a round flat piece. 
8. Use a springform pan base as a mould and cut out using a pizza cutter or knife. 
9. Bake two to three pieces at a time (depending on the size of your oven) at 175 degree Celcius for 4-5 minutes until it turns golden. After baking all the pieces, bake the scraps (from the sides that we cut off earlier)
TIPS: Once the biscuit turned golden, take them out even if it's still soft. The biscuit will harden slightly once it cools down.
10. Set aside the biscuit and let them cool down.
11. After the crumbs has cooled down, crushed them and set aside. 

Preparing the cream layer
1. Beat the heavy whipping cream until stiff peak. Set aside.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the sour cream and icing sugar. Then fold in the whipped cream into the sour cream mixture and it is ready to use. 


Assembling the cake
1. Spread around 1/3 of cream frosting on each biscuit and layer them up. Press the layers down gently to avoid any air gaps. The biscuit needs to absorb the cream to be soft.
2. Spread the rest of the frosting at the top and sides.
3. Dust the top and the sides with the crumbs prepared earlier and cover the cake up so that it doesn't dry up in the fridge. 
4. Refrigerate overnight for the cake to absorb the cream and soften. 
5. Enjoy!

Add caption

Cook: No Bake Original Cheesecake

A piece of goodness
I have made a few versions of cheesecake- chocolate ones, Oreo etc etc......Decided to go back to basic and searched for recipe for an original cheesecake. I am surprise my first attempt was successful. I would suggest leaving the cheesecake at least 24 hours before consumption
so that the texture is more firm. 

INGREDIENTS (makes 9 inches cake)

1. 300g digestive biscuits (Crush into crumbs by placing them in a food processor or place them in a plastic bag and crush them using a rolling pin)
2. 90g butter, melted
3. 400g of cream cheese, at room temperature
4. 315g of whipping cream
5. 1 tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice
6. 1/8 teaspoon of salt
7. 60g of sugar

METHODS:

Preparing cheesecake base
1. Place the digestive crumb into the springform pan and add in the melted butter.
2. Mix well, and press down the biscuit mixture using the back of a spoon.
3. Chill in fridge for at least 1 hour.


Preparing the cheesecake mixture
4. Whip the whipping cream using mixer until medium peak. Set aside.
TIPS: Use high speed for 3-5 minutes or until the cream thickens, then reduce to low speed until it reached medium peak. This is how it will looks like: Medium Peak Whipped Cream.
6. In a stand mixer, blend the cream cheese, lemon juice, salt and sugar until it is creamy. It should just take 1-2 minutes.
7. Add the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture by batches and stir in using a spatula. Do not over mix.
8. Pour the mixture into the springform pan and smoothen the surface using a spatula.

9. Place the cheesecake into fridge and leave it overnight before serving.

TIPS: The texture might be a bit soft if just leaving it overnight, I would suggest chilling for at least 24 hours before serving.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Cook: Chocolate Mille Crepe Cake


Chocolate Mille Crepe Cake
Mille crepe cake is one of my favourite and ever since I tried it at Maco Bakery in Skudai, Johor, Malaysia, I always find myself went back for more. Ever since I moved to Dubai, I have yet found a nice mille crepe cake. It consists of 10-20 layers of thin layers crepe layered with whipped cream in between and tasted so heavenly. Although there are many times I search for its recipe but I have yet try to make them as I find it tedious to make the layers one by one. 

One fine day, I decided to go ahead and make them and I am enjoying a piece while typing out this blog. To be exact, it is my second piece today :P Time to go for exercise after this!

As it is my first attempt, I find the whipped cream layer is a little too thin for my taste bud. I am definitely going to increase the amount of whipped cream and spread a more generous layer for my next attempt but for now, I am going to enjoy this chocolate mille crepe cake.


Enjoying a slice now...
Mine made up of 18 layers and it is definitely a good size

INGREDIENTS (Makes one 8 inches crepe cake):

For the thin crepe layers:
1. 400ml of full fat fresh milk
2. 1 1/2 tablespoon of sugar
3. 3 large eggs
4. 25g of butter, melted
5. 1 cup of cake flour
6. 2 tablespoon of cocoa powder
7. 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder

For the fillings:
1. 240ml whipped cream or more according to taste. 
2. 1-2 tablespoon of sugar (if you like it to be sweeter)

METHODS:

1. Place the milk and sugar in a saucepan and heat it up on low heat. Slowly stirred until all the sugar is dissolved.
2. In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs and slowly add in the warm milk mixture. Whisk till combine. 

Beat the egg yolk
Add in warm milk/sugar mixture
3. Add in the melted butter, whisk to combine.
4. Next , sieve the cake flour, cocoa powder and baking powder into the mixture by batches and whisk to combine.
Sieve the cake flour mixture
5. The mixture should looks runny as shown.
6. Once ready, cover the mixing bowl with a cling film and place them in the fridge for an hour to let it settle down.
The batter should be very thin and flowy
7. Heat up cooking pan on low heat. Using a kitchen towel, spread a thin layer of cooking oil and pour the batter in. 
8. Cook for 1-2 minutes until the sides looks crispy. Using a spatula, flip the crepe. 
9. Once the crepe is cooked, remove and set aside to cool down.
10. Repeat until all crepes are cooked.
Make 18 layers altogether
11. Beat the whipped cream until stiff. Then assemble the crepe cake by putting a layer of whipped cream in between the crepe.
Spread whipped cream in between layers
12. Once it is done, sprinkle some cocoa powder on top and pop them into fridge overnight.
Ready to pop into the fridge
Sprinkle some cocoa powder on top
13. Serve chill :)



Cook: Soft Flowy Ramen Egg


Ramen egg is one of our favourite and only now I realise it is not hard to make. You can make in advance and keep in fridge up to 3-4 days. So, can just pop one into your ramen/udon noodle anytime of the day :)

The softness of the yolk depends on the time that you cook the egg. If you like the yolk to be really soft as shown in the photo, it takes 7 minutes. If you like it slightly less flowy, do cook it for 8-9 minutes. 

INGREDIENTS (Makes 4 eggs):

1. 4 large eggs
2. 4 tablespoon of soy sauce
3. 4 tablespoon of miring
4. 4-6 tablespoon of water (adjust saltiness according to taste)

METHODS:

1. Combine the soy sauce, miring and water in a plastic bag and set aside.


2. In a saucepan, add enough water so that it will cover the egg later, bring water to boil.
3. Once the water is boiling rapidly, add in the eggs straight from the fridge using a ladle to prevent the eggs from breaking.
4. At the same time, reduce the heat so that the water is just simmering with small bubbles as shown in the picture.
5. Simmer the egg for 7-9 minutes depending on your preference of the egg's texture.
Simmering
6. Once the time is up, remove the eggs and place them into a cold water bath that you have prepare in advance. Leave them in the cold water for 3 minutes.

7. Then slowly peel the skin. Be careful as the egg is very soft. 
8. Place the peeled egg into the plastic bag with the soy sauce mixture. Place them in the fridge.

9. Keep them overnight or at least for 3-4 hours so that the egg absorb the soy sauce. Consume within 3-4 days.