Thursday, December 26, 2013

It's Christmas 2013 - Chocolate Nutella Log Cake (Bake Along #56) & Encore: The Boozy Tiramisu

Merry Christmas!
I hope everybody had a jolly time!
I believe many are going for more shopping today on Boxing Day :)

I had a small feast and had a great time at home last night
Here's what I made:


Mixed vegetable salad with French dressing, baked mashed potato, steamed meatloaf with sweet and sour sauce, pickled cucumber



You may view the recipe for the meatloaf HERE
The baked mashed potato is just a simple one. A mixture of steamed mashed potatoes, nutmeg, salt, pepper, sugar. Pour into a baking dish and brush with a mixture of egg yolk and butter. Grill til browned
The pickled cucumber is even simpler. Peel, halve lengthwise and deseed cucumber, cut small. Mix in a bowl with vinegar and sugar. Leave overnight


Appetizer done by my guest - The original bitterballen with beef filling - yum!
But I would prefer to use chicken, even though I couldn't resist the one with beef filling LOL



Appetizer number two: Salmon croquette, also prepared by my guest
Double yum yum - perfecto!
 


 The drinks. Beer for the boys. Riesling for all (except the kids, of course)
Pretty good wine. Fruity and sweet



Dessert number one: The boozy tiramisu - encore
Heavenly slurpy!



Last year I made this too for New Year and I felt that it'd be better if the sponge fingers dipped on both sides. So this year I did that plus I sprinkled cocoa powder on the cream mixture in the middle. But I still found it should have been more moist. I'll try dipping the whole sponge finger in Kahlua mixture next year and see how I turns out LOL
Please view the recipe HERE


Dessert number two: Chocolate nutella log cake covered in butter cream
 


 

Aaarrgghh!!! I couldn't manage to roll this cake properly! You see, there's buttercream in the middle of the rolled cake!
But really, this cake is soft, spongy, moist and yummy. And it's easy to make, too! :)


Recipe is from the book Elegant Swiss Roll by Kevin Chai
But I didn't decorate the cake as nice as the one in the book :)



What you need:

For the cake:
4 eggs
70g caster sugar
70g plain flour
15g cocoa powder
50g butter, melted

Filling:
Nutella (original recipe: 200g butter cream mixed with 100g melted chocolate)

Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 220degC. Grease and line 25x35cm swiss roll pan
  2. Using mixer on full speed, beat egg and sugar til light and fluffy
  3. Gently fold in sifted flour and cocoa powder. Add in melted butter
  4. Mix til well combined
  5. Spread mixture into the pan. Bake for 8mins
  6. Put baking paper on the pan followed by cooling rack upside down and flip til the cake on the baking paper on the cooling rack. Leave to cool
  7. Spread nutella and roll gently using baking paper
  8. Decorate with buttercream and any desired ornament can be added

The log cake is for Bake Along , a baking event organised by  Joyce from Kitchen FlavoursLena from Frozen Wings and Zoe from Bake For Happy Kids. This is our 56th bake

 
 
It's also for  Baby Sumo's Christmas Recipe Collection 2013 hosted by hosted by Baby Sumo of Eat Your Heart Out
 
 
 

Friday, December 20, 2013

Red Velvet Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting In Jars

This month's challenge for LBT event, Cake In A Jar
I have no mason jar. Most of my glass jars from store bought jam or pasta sauce were disposed. I have a few but it's already used for my homemade jams
So in the end these are the "jars" I used :)




Layers of red velvet cake and cream cheese frosting
To make it looks more Christmas-ey I added a little green food coloring on the frosting :)
Sprinkled with red and green sand sugar, poked little Santa and Snowman cupcake topping and that's it :)



Layering them one by one in the jar is not so simple. Let alone make it neatly arranged. So I am pretty satisfied with this outcome :)

 
 
Recipe for the cake is from Joy Of Baking and the frosting is from Eugenie's Kitchen
 
Red Velvet Cake
 
What you need:
(below is full recipe, I only made half)
 
250g cake flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp. cocoa powder
113g unsalted butter, room temperature
300g sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
240ml buttermilk
2 tbsp liquid red food color (I mixed 1:1 noel red and cochineal red)
1 tsp white distilled vinegar
1 tsp baking soda
 
Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 175degC. Put the rack in the middle of the oven
  2. Butter two 9" round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment paper
  3. Sift flour, salt and cocoa together. Set aside
  4. Beat butter til soft (2 mins). Add in sugar, beat til light and fluffy (about 3-5 mins)
  5. Add in egg, one at a time, beat well after each addition, scrape down the sides
  6. Add in vanilla extract, beat til combined
  7. Whisk buttermilk with red color
  8. With mixer in low speed, alternatively add in flour mixture and buttermilk to the butter mixture in 3 additions (beginning and ending with the flour)
  9. Combine vinegar and baking soda in a small bowl. Let it fizz then quickly fold into the cake batter
  10. Pour on the pans, smooth the tops. Bake about 30 minutes til skewer comes out clean
  11. Cool on the wire rack in the pans for 10 mins and remove from pan
  12. Cool further on wire rack
 
Cream Cheese Frosting
 
What you need:
 
113g unsalted butter, room temperature
100g icing sugar (original recipe: 125g)
200g cream cheese (original recipe: 142g)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract (or zest of 1 lemon)
 
Method:
  1. In a bowl add cream cheese, butter and icing sugar, also vanilla or lemon zest
  2. Cream together til homogenous
 
To assemble:
  1. Spoon frosting to the bottom of the jar, smooth the top. Place rounded cut piece of cake (thickness about 1 inch). Spoon more frosting on top of the cake, smooth the top
  2. Continue til there are 3 layers of cake. Last layer on top should be the frosting
  3. Decorate as desired
  4. My "jar" is wider at the top so the size of each cake is different. The bottom layer is 5cm, middle layer is 5.5cm while the top layer is 6cm
 

Oh yum! Such a sinful indulgence!
 
 
 
I'm also submitting this post to Baby Sumo's Christmas Recipe Collection 2013 hosted by hosted by Baby Sumo of Eat Your Heart Out
 
 

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

AFF West Asia - Cranberry Jelly Sufganiyot (Doughnuts)

Honestly, I was not too thrilled with this month's Asian Food Fest (AFF)
I never fancy Middle East food. I don't even like kebab! (Is that Middle East food? LOL)
I do like pita bread though. That's in fact the only food I know originated from Middle East
That's last month
This month I learnt that I might like some of the dishes and munches
So, this is the first one I tried. A snack my kids always love. Doughnuts :)
If not because of AFF, I wouldn't know that this is a Middle East snack :)


 
 
Recipe is from HERE
 
What you need:
 
2 tsp instant yeast
40g sugar
6 tbsp water
2 tbsp orange juice
40g unsalted butter, melted
1/4 tsp salt
315g bread flour
2 egg yolks
homemade cranberry jam (***recipe below)
icing sugar to sprinkle
 
Method:
  1. Combine sugar, water, orange juice and yeast together. Let stand for 10 minutes til frothy
  2. Add in melted butter to the yeast mixture, followed by egg yolk
  3. Pour the mixture into bread machine pan and then add in flour and salt
  4. Let the machine does its job til the first proofing done
  5. If you choose to proof outside, let it do so for one hour til doubled in size, covered with damp kitchen towel
  6. Lightly flour working surface. Roll out dough into 1/4"thick, cut out in circles about 5cm diameter. Rest the circle for 30mins covered with damp kitchen towel
  7. Heat some oil in a saucepan, add doughnut dough in batches and fry til golden brown, turning once
  8. Drain on kitchen paper and let cool completely
  9. To fill in the doughnuts with jam, slit an opening at the sides of the doughnuts, spoon in adequate amount of cranberry jam and dust with icing sugar before serving
 
Before dusting with icing sugar. Looks like hamburger to me LOL
 


Yum....
 


***Homemade cranberry jam

What you need:

200g fresh/frozen cranberries
240g sugar
200ml water

Method:
  1. Combine all ingredients in a saucepan, bring to boil and then simmer over low heat for 30 minutes til slightly thickened. Stir occasionally
  2. Jam will further thickens after cooling down
  3. Cool down completely before using. Keep in a clean glass container and refrigerated

Looks like Pac-Man huh? LOL

 

This post is for Asian Food Fest - West Asia hosted by Shannon of Just As Delish

Also to me this is a great choice for Christmas treat. Hence my submission to Baby Sumo's Christmas Recipe Collection 2013 hosted by hosted by Baby Sumo of Eat Your Heart Out

Thursday, December 12, 2013

THB #27 Sticky Caramel Pinwheel Bread

I changed the name, sorry Mr. Pappas. To me, this is bread, not cake :)
But one thing for sure, whether you can name it cake or bread, this is one delicious munch!
Soft, fluffy bread with sticky gooey sweet topping. Served warm. Perfect!

I planned to bake this bread full recipe when I realized I ran out of bread flour. No choice, I made just half. Aarrgghh!

I followed the recipe exactly, but reduced the sugar for the dough (reduced to two third of the 1/3cup -> for half recipe) as well as the caramel topping. Oh, I also omitted the nuts!


Ready to bake... I got 11 pinwheels :)
 
 
 
 Fresh from the oven. I had no idea why the swirl at the top right turned out different LOL



It's almost dinner time when this bread out from the oven. Aarrgghh... I didn't like the idea cos I wouldn't get nice pictures at night. But it's been a baking time with lots of interruptions. Yeah... it's school holiday, so very expected LOL
Anyway, I will take more snaps tomorrow morning before I have them for breakfast. Just pray the object will still be in the container, not in somebody's belly hahaha...




Soft, fluffy, yummy, sticky sweet with full of cinnamon aroma and flavour nom nom nom... Let's see if tomorrow morning I still get the same texture :)



This bread is for The Home Bakers - hosted by Joyce from Kitchen Flavours, where we bake from the book Coffee Cakes by Lou Seibert Pappas
Jasline  of Foodie Baker chose this recipe, you may hop to her wonderful blog for the full recipe

Monday, December 9, 2013

Macaroni Cheese (Bill Granger)

One must try dish for every featured chef for the event Cook Like A Star :)
Now is Bill Granger's turn :)

Recipe is from HERE
Original recipe is from Bill's book called 'Feed Me Now' and the original name for this dish is 'Cheesy Pasta Gratin'
But just like Niamh, to me it's macaroni cheese :)

No question asked, this dish was loved by my kids (not DH, he's not into creamy pasta)




What you need:

250g macaroni (or penne)
1.5 tbsp plain flour
1.5 tbsp butter
440ml fresh milk
125g cheddar / gruyere / any other hard cheese - grated (I used cheddar)
salt, pepper
70g breadcrumbs
1 tbsp olive oil
1.5 tbsp grated parmesan (I used 3 tbsp)
zest of 1/4 lemon
10 slices of breakfast ham - sliced (my addition)

Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 200degC. Cook pasta according to instruction
  2. Make the cheese sauce: Melt butter in the saucepan, add in flour. Stir til smooth and cook, stir about 2 mins. Remove pan from heat, gradually add in milk, whisk constantly. Return pan to the heat, cook, still whisking until thickened. Add in cheddar cheese, stir to melt. Season with salt and pepper
  3. Heat a little oil and cook ham slices til slightly browned and cooked
  4. Now, mix breadcrumb, olive oil, parmesan cheese and lemon zest in a bowl - mix well
  5. Drain pasta as soon as it's cooked and add into the cheese sauce, followed by the ham slices
  6. Mix well, transfer to the baking dish
  7. Scatter breadcrumb mixture over it and bake for 15 to 20 mins til golden brown





This post is for Cook like a Star, organised by Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids, Yen from Eat your heart out and Mich from Piece of Cake


The biggest fan of creamy pasta in the house posed with this delicious mac and cheese :)


Sunday, December 8, 2013

ABC December 2013 - Hot Buttered Soft Pretzels

Baked this yesterday. Despite me on medication, my itch for baking came. So I remember that I haven't done my homework for ABC this month so here it is :)

Pretty simple to bake, and yielded a delicious buttery soft pretzels I usually only enjoy when I visited German eateries. Crisp skin with soft and chewy interior! Love it! :)
I had this for breakfast this morning and after warm it in the microwave for 15 seconds, it tasted just like fresh from the oven :)


 
 
Recipe is courtesy of King Arthur Flour. Step by step instruction which was really helpful for me can be viewed HERE
 
I followed the recipe without any change, except that I skipped the salt topping since I didn't have coarse or pretzel salt at home. Hence salted butter was used to brush the hot pretzels
 
 
 
 
Lovely taste with great texture...yum! I could eat it plain. Even though a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar is highly recommended. As well as spread of cream cheese :)

 
 
This post is for Avid Baker's Challenge December 2013, a baking event hosted by Hanaa from Hanaa's Kitchen where we bake recipes from King Arthur Flour for this year
 

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Bake Along #55 - Italian Almond Tart

I was not too well today, but I have chosen today is the day to bake this tart so I proceeded and it's a good decision. This is a really yummy tart. A little too sweet to my liking, but it's really delicious!
Eating a slice of this sweet and tangy tart with a cup of ginger tea made me feel better :)
Ginger tea sounds a weird choice to accompany this tart but it's a great choice for me with body ache, sore throat and stuffy nose LOL

Recipe is from Williams-Sonoma
I baked half recipe using my 20cm pie tart and it's still more than enough to feed my family




What you need:
(for half recipe)

For the tart dough:
1/2 egg yolk
1 tbsp very cold water
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
100g all purpose flour
45g sugar
a pnch of salt
65g cold unsalted butter, cut small

Method:
  1. In a small bowl, stir together the egg yolk, water and vanilla; set aside
  2. To make the dough by hand, in a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar and salt. Using a pastry cutter or 2 knives, cut the butter into the flour mixture until the texture resembles coarse cornmeal, with butter pieces no larger than small peas. Add the egg mixture and mix with a fork just until the dough pulls together (you can also use stand mixer or food processor - but I did by hand)
  3. Transfer the dough to a work surface, pat into a ball and flatten into a disk. Use the dough immediately, or wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled, about 30 mins
  4. Fold the dough round in half and carefully transfer to a 24cm tart pan (mine was half recipe with 20cm pan), preferably with a removable bottom. Unfold and ease the round into the pan, without stretching it, and pat it firmly into the bottom and up the sides of the pan
  5. Trim off any excess dough by gently running a rolling pin across the top of the pan. Press the dough into the sides to extend it slightly above the rim to offset any shrinkage during baking. Refrigerate or freeze the tart shell until firm, about 30 minutes
Now prepare parchment paper and pie weight to blind bake the pie crust
Preheat the oven to 190degC

Line the pastry shell with parchment paper and fill with pie weight. Bake for 20 minutes, then lift an edge of the foil. If the dough looks wet, continue to bake, checking every 5 minutes, until the dough is pale gold, for a total baking time of 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack

Position a rack in the middle of the oven and reduce the heat to 175degC

For the filling:
65g unsalted butter, room temperature
125g almond paste*, cut small cubes
30g sugar
1 egg
30g all purpose flour
55g raspberry jam
25g sliced almonds

*How to make almond paste: (source: Joyce from Kitchen Flavours)
Mix 75g ground almond, 45g sifted icing sugar, 1/4 tsp almond extract (I replaced with vanilla extract), a pinch of salt and 1 tablespoon of egg white
Knead to a dough and it's ready to use

Method:
  1. In a bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter until smooth
  2. Add the almond paste, one piece at a time, beating until smooth after each addition
  3. While continuing to beat, sprinkle in the sugar
  4. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the flour
 
Now back to the tart shell...

Spread the jam evenly over the bottom of the partially baked tart shell. Spoon in the almond paste mixture and spread evenly over the jam. Sprinkle the surface evenly with the sliced almonds
Bake the tart until the filling is golden and the middle is firm to the touch, 35 to 45 mins Transfer to a wire rack and let the tart cool completely. Serve at room temperature




This tart is for Bake Along , a baking event organised by  Joyce from Kitchen FlavoursLena from Frozen Wings and Zoe from Bake For Happy Kids

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Bill's Scrambled Eggs (Bill Granger)

I love this creamy scrambled egg
This time I put it in wholemeal wrap with ham and black pepper cheese
Put the wrap on a heated non stick pan. Place ham on one side of the wrap, place cheese on the other side. Let cook for 30 seconds. Place the eggs over the ham, fold the wrap
And breakfast is ready!


 
 
Recipe for the scrambled egg is from HERE
 
What you need:
 
2 eggs
80ml cream
pinch of salt
10g butter
 
Method:
  1. Place eggs, cream and salt in a bowl and whisk together
  2. Melt butter in a non-stick frying pan over high heat. Pour in egg mixture and cook for 20 seconds, or until gently set around the edge. Stir the eggs with a wooden spoon, gently bringing the egg mixture on the outside of the pan to the centre. The idea is to fold the eggs rather than to scramble them
  3. Leave to cook for 20 seconds longer and repeat the folding process. When the eggs are just set (remembering that they will continue cooking as they rest), turn out onto a plate and serve
 
A very filling meal in the morning!
 


 This post is for Cook like a Star, organised by Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids, Yen from Eat your heart out and Mich from Piece of Cake

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Cinnamon Crunch Muesli (Bill Granger)

This homemade muesli is really easy to prepare and delicious!
Recipe is from HERE




What you need:
(below is half recipe)

63g unsalted butter
30g light brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
150g rolled oats
80g almond with skin, roughly chopped

Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 160degC. Line baking tray
  2. Heat in a pan over medium heat - butter, sugar and cinnamon
  3. Stir til butter melted and sugar dissolved
  4. Off heat, add in oats and almond, stir to coat evenly
  5. Spread the mixture evenly on the tray
  6. Bake about 30 minutes, stir occasionally til lightly browned
  7. Cool completely and store in an airtight container
Serving suggestions: with yoghurt and/or poached fruits


This post is for Cook like a Star, organised by Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids, Yen from Eat your heart out and Mich from Piece of Cake

 

Also I'm submitting this post to Little Thumbs Up, an event initiated by Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids and Doreen from My Little Favourite DIY  where the star ingredients used for this month of November is Oats, hosted by Vivian from Vivian Pang Kitchen

Friday, November 29, 2013

It's Korean & Thai Dishes In A Day

Yes. Today I had Korean green onion pancakes (Pajeon) for lunch and Thai fried chicken (Gai Thod) for dinner LOL


My lunch...
 


Recipe for this delicious savoury pancake - Korean Green Onion Pancake (Pajeon) -  can be found HERE
 
What you need:
 
For the pancake:
10 stalks green onion, cut into 5 inches long
1/2 cup plain flour
1/2 cup water
1 tsp salted soya bean paste
1/2 tsp sugar
3 tbsp vegetable oil
 
Method:
  1. Mix plain flour, water, soya bean paste, and sugar in a bowl, mix well til smooth
  2. Heat oil in a frying pan. Arrange green onion parallel to each other, in the shape of rectangle
  3. Pour batter over the green onion evenly
  4. While cooked, keep patting, press slightly and keep it in nice shape with spatula
  5. A few minutes later, when the bottom turns crispy and golden brown, flip it
  6. Cook another 1 minute and transfer to serving plate
  7. Serve with dipping sauce
 
The dipping sauce...
 


Dipping sauce:

Mix 2 tbsp soya sauce, 1 tbsp vinegar, 1 tsp sugar, chopped shallot, chopped red chilli, chopped green onion (the green part), 1 tsp chopped garlic
(original recipe used roasted sesame seeds but I didn't use)


My dinner...
 


Recipe for this finger licking scrumptious, crispy yet succulent Thai Fried Chicken (Gai Thod) is from HERE



What you need: (modified)

600g chicken cut of your choice (I used chicken drumlettes)
3 coriander roots, cleaned and chopped
6 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 tsp white pepper powder
1/2 tbsp salt
1 tbsp oyster sauce
dash of soya sauce
dash of fish sauce
3 tbsp water
1/4 cup rice flour

Method:
  1. Blend pepper, garlic, coriander roots, salt to a paste
  2. Mix the paste with the rest of the ingredients
  3. Marinate chicken with the paste mixture, leave it overnight in the fridge
  4. Deep fry chicken just before serving and serve immediately with homemade thai sweet chilli sauce

Thai sweet chilli sauce
Source: SheSimmers
 
What you need:
 
3 large garlic cloves, peeled
2 red chillis, desseded
1/4 cup vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup water
1/2 tbsp salt
1 tbsp cornflour
2 tbsp water
 
Method:
  1. Puree garlic, chillis, vinegar, sugar, water and salt
  2. Transfer the mixture to a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Lower the heat to medium and simmer until the mixture thickens up a bit and the garlic-pepper bits begin to soften, about 3 mins
  3. Combine the cornflour and water. Whisk in the cornflour mixture and continue to simmer one more min. The cornflour will help the sauce to thicken slightly thereby causing nice suspension of the garlic-pepper bits, otherwise you get a thin sauce with all the little pieces floating on the surface
  4. Let cool completely, store in a glass jar and refrigerate



The best way to eat the chicken...
 


Slurp! :)
 




My lunch is posted here for Aspiring Bakers #37:Korean-Feast of Hansik (Nov 2013) hosted by Grace of Life Can Be Simple




And my dinner is posted for  Asian Food Fest November 2013: Thailand hosted by Lena from Frozen Wings

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