Friday, 20 December 2013
Friday, 1 March 2013
St Morris, SA 5068
Thursday, 1 May 2008
Like a drug addict seeking for more magic mushrooms and trying out different little pills to get high I have been frantically searching for my pills. No, I’m not a drug seeker nor a drug pusher but I’m just a food blogger caught up in the blogsphere. A year ago, while desperately trying to download more food pictures onto my laptop, a signed popped up saying “ No more free-space. Please delete unused items”. Hundreds of food pictures were uploaded on to my lap top over the years and I didn’t know what to do with them. Hence, I decided to start a blog. It seems like just yesterday I was trying to figure out how to post a post on my blog. I’m still no expert at it but slightly better now.
I was very dubious about starting a blog as my culinary skills were not close to any of the other well known bloggers. However, after days of thinking about it I did it. You must be thinking I’m such a drama queen and making a mountain out of a mole hill. But that’s just how I am. Not a risk taker at all. But I did it anyway.
Despite having a brief twinge of guilt off and on last year for staying up a few extra minutes to rummage through recipe books instead of using that time to read my text books, I must admit that I have no regrets at all for starting this blog. It kept my head attached to my neck!! I would have ended up in some sort of mental institution otherwise with all my exams and stress I went through last year.
The experience I’ve gained in the kitchen and friendships I’ve build through this blog is beyond the seven seas. The biggest surprise is that I’ve kept the blog for a year. I thought it would have been just like a passing cloud. Hopefully I’ll keep it going for the years to come and won’t be too busy with work.
I made a cake for my blog and for my friend’s birthday with the help of Sarah and a few friends who saw us playing around with the fondant and wanted to join in the fun. After watching an episode of Grey’s Anatomy where Burk made Christina try out different cakes for her wedding and one of them was a red velvet cake, I was very curious about how it tasted.
I got this recipe from Domestic goddess which was originally adapted from Martha Steward.
4 tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk
2 tbs red colouring
1 tsp white vinegar
1 tsp vanilla exract
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
113g unsalted butter, room temperature
2 large eggs
2 x 250g packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 tbs vanilla extract
2 ½ cups icing sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter, line with parchment, butter and flour again one deep 10-inch-diameter cake pan.
2. Sift already sifted flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.
3. Whisk the buttermilk, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla in small bowl to blend.
4. Beat sugar and butter together in the bowl of an electric mixer using the paddle attachment, until well blended. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each. Beat in dry ingredients in 4 additions alternately with buttermilk mixture in 3 additions.
5. Pour batter into the prepared pan. Bake until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 35 - 40 minutes. Cool in pan on rack for about 10 minutes. Turn cake out onto rack and cool completely.
1. Place cooled cake in freezer for about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, beat cream cheese and butter in large bowl until smooth. Beat in vanilla. Add powdered sugar and beat until smooth.
2. Slice cake into 2 even layers. Place 1 layer, flat side up, on a platter. Spread 1 cup frosting over top. Arrange ½ of the blueberries, ½ of the blackberries and ½ of the strawberries on top of the frosting, pressing lightly to adhere. Top with second cake layer, flat side up again. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake - smoothing to a nice finish. Arrange remaining berries decoratively over top of cake. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Let stand at room temperature about 1 hour before serving.)
The verdict of the cake- 9/10. It was moist , light and was a cross between a chocolate and vanilla cake taste wise.
Tuesday, 15 April 2008
That morning a ray of sunlight peaked through the grey heavy clouds and straight onto my face as I tossed in bed. My eyes were still shut but my thoughts were doing the Macarena in my mind. The dripping faucet of raindrops from the gutter outside sounded like an anxious schizophrenic patient tapping his fingers on the doctor’s table and the strong winds brushing against the grills so angrily made my thoughts a fast forward version of the Macarena. *RINGGG my alarm went off* and my hand reached out to grab the alarm to shut it even before my brain could register where the sound was coming from. I pulled the covers over my head and got into the fetal position. Images of the old ancient looking building and patients that look the same age as the building, shuffling their feet at 1cm/min made me wish I could inject myself with a strong dose of diazepam or morphine and self induce a coma.
But before I knew it, I had slipped off the mattress and my naked feet were touching the cold unkind floor and I was shutting the bathroom door behind me in spite of the voice in my head screaming “GO BACK TO BED”.
To bake or to sit and listen to people going on about their problems for 9 hours was the million dollar question. I knock on my roommate’s door and stood there for a good minute before I could recall why I went in. Should I go in to hospital today was what I asked. Her reply was gold. “You’ve got only a few more months to chuck a sicky whenever you like, you know before u start working for good.” She continued after a second, “stay at home and I’ll be back in the afternoon and we can bake together.” So that was what I did after calling up my parents so that they would reduce my guilt. And it worked!
Soft, crispy cream puffs were what I made. I’ve had the urge to make them for the past few months but never got around to it. However, I got inspired after reading Iocyes’s post on cream puffs. I’ve always been afraid to work with Choux pastry. But I did it!!
I found this really easy recipe from easyhomemakers. I do agree with her that it is foolproof! The only thing that I added to the pastry dough was a few drops of vanilla essence due to my “egginess” phobia.
The recipe is as follows.
1 cup (200ml) water
1/2 (150 gm) cup butter
1 cup (125 gm) flour
4 large eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1) Heat water and butter to rolling boil; reduce heat. Stir in flour and stir vigorously over low heat until mixture forms into a ball, about 1 minute.
2) Remove from heat. Beat in eggs; continue beating until smooth.
3) Heat oven to 200 degrees Celcius or 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
4) Use rounded teaspoonfuls (to tablespoonfuls, depending on the size you like) to make mounds about 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
5) Bake puffs until they are puffed and golden brown, 20 to 30 minutes. Cool.
6) Slit each puff halfway and put in the custard filling.
As for the filling, I used Nigella’s crème pâtissière recipe to fill these little treats up. You can email me if you want the recipe.
All in all, I had a nice self proclaimed long weekend. I seriously hope no one from the surgery reads my blog in the next few weeks if not my little secret will be revealed!
Thank you Iocyes for the award.
For spreading the love and being so generous with your time, words and expertise and making the blogging world a much lovelier place...i pass the award on to..
Friday, 8 February 2008
Ever since I can remember, most of my friends have been Chinese. This is one of the many benefits of living in a country with many cultures. Malaysia has become a pluralist culture. But somehow, I still get stares from people sporadically when I walk with my Chinese or Malay friends on the streets. The good news is, I have been immunized and have cultivated the antibodies for the stares :D
Since Malaysia is a cultural mosaic, we get to join in the fun and celebrate each other’s festivals. Chinese New year is one of my favorite. I love watching energetic lion dancers in malls, admiring the beautifully decorated streets with Chinese lanterns and most of all, eating mandarin oranges and snacking on love letters and cookies!
Since it was CNY, I had two guest bakers to join in the fun of making cookies in my kitchen. My friends and I decided to bake a batch of cookies. After going through what felt like gazillion recipes, we decided to make cornflake cookies. I must say, I was very impressed with the recipe I found from cyberkuali!
Here's the recipe
110g castor sugar
1/2 tsp grated rind of lemon or orange
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1 egg yolk
100g cornflakes, crushed lightly
125 g self raising flour
1 tbsp corn flour
1.Cream butter, sugar and essence until the mixture turns light and fluffy.
2. Beat in egg yolk and lemon rind. Fold in sifted flour and mix. Put mixture into the refrigerator to chill for half an hour until it turns slightly firm.
3. Drop teaspoonfuls of mixture onto the crushed cornflakes.
4.Shape into balls and place on lightly-greased baking trays and bake in preheated oven at 170°C for 20—25 minutes or until lightly golden in colour.
5. Cool on wire racks before storing in airtight containers.
The only things that i did differently were, I only used 70g of sugar and I added 1 tbsp of milk powder to give it a milky taste.
If u want a different version of cornflake cookies, check out Daphne’s blog! She made dark chocolate cornflake cookies.
Before I end this post, I’d like to wish all my Chinese friends out there a very Happy and prosperous Chinese New Year! Go the year of the RAT!
Monday, 28 January 2008
Greetings everyone! I bet my absence was missed dearly by everyone *cheeky grin*. I’m currently back home in Penang. A lot has happened since I last wrote. A lot of obstacles were thrown my way but with HIS grace and with constant support from my family and close friends everything seems to be going smoothly now. The good news is, I got through my finals!!!! WOHOO.After all the hard work, 1000s of cumulative calories and a few mental blocks along the way, I made it: D.
On another note, my one and only beloved sister is finally getting married!! And please do not ask me when I am going to get married. I’m no where near. Applicants are most welcome though.
I’ve been vegetarian for the past 1 month in conjunction with Thaipusam. Personally, I really enjoy being vegetarian back home. There’s so much variety here and you can get vegetarian versions of all your favourite local cuisines. But I do have to admit I can’t wait to set out to all my favourite hawker joints here in Penang. I’ve had quite a few requests to compose a list of all my favourite food joints here and i’ll try my best to make a list for all my loyal readers before I return to dear ol’Adelaide. So fear not dear friends, the next time you are faced with the conundrum of where to eat, you know where to come.
Now let me share with you my unforgettable New Year’s Eve sleep over with 2 of my best friends, Jas and LF. I’ve known these girls since standard 1. Yes, I’m serious! We’ve been friends for the past 16 years. You can do the math to find out how old I really am if you really want to :P We’ve been studying in different continents for many years and finally were in the same place at the same time.
We decided to have a small social gathering at home to span the transition of the year at midnight and decided to steer clear of all the overcrowded places. The day started off by going grocery shopping. I just get so excited going grocery shopping. We wanted everything to be simple that night and here’s our menu
Sausage rolls & tofu rolls for me
Mars bar slice
I got my stuffed mushroom recipe from Dharm! Thanx Dharm for the lovely recipe. Your ever so reliable recipes always come in handy! The mushrooms were a big hit. You can get the recipe here. The major problem I had was finding the mushrooms here in Penang. But I finally did from Cold Storage in Island Plaza.
As for the pizza, all I can say is nothing can beat homemade pizzas! The recipe is as follows:
2 tsp dried yeast
1 tsp sugar
¾ cup hot water
1 tbs vegetable oil
2 cups flour
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 can button mushrooms
Grated mozzarella cheese
Grated parmesan cheese
Italian mix herbs+ oregano
1. Add dried yeast + sugar in blood hot water.Mix thoroughly and leave until bubbles appear(~ 10-15 mins)
2. Mix vegetable oil + yeast mixture to flour. Knead and leave for about 1 ½ hours. Dough should be roughly twice the initial size.
3. Spread tomato puree on base followed by whatever filling you desire.
4. Bake till cheese is melted and crust turns golden.
Being vegetarian , we had non-alcoholic sparkling apple juice to spice up the final seconds of the year, and celebrate the beginning of a new year full of hopes, challenges, changes and dreams.
Happy New Year everybody! Put the past behind and start fresh!
Another fresh new year is here,
Another year to live!
To banish worry, doubt and fear,
To love and laugh and give!
This bright new year is given me
To live each day with zest..
To daily grow and try to be
My highest and my best.
I have the opportunity
Once more to right some wrongs,
To pray for peace, to plant a tree,
And sing more joyful songs!
~William Arthur Ward~
Saturday, 20 October 2007
Hiee everyone!! If u're wondering if i'm still alive, the answer is yes :) The reason for my absence is that my barrier exams are in 6 weeks time and i just don't have the time to cook much and let alone blog. I've been baking off and on but when it comes to meals, everything i eat doesn't take more than 20 minutes to prepare. I'm thankful that my sister cooks most of the time for me so i don't have to live off toast and noodles.
My parents are coming to Adelaide soon to kinda babysit me..aren't i lucky ;). To all my Malay friends out there, Selamat Hari Raya. A few classmates of mine invited a whole bunch of us over for Raya. It was lots of fun. We cooked practically the whole night the day before and they had people coming and going from morning till night. Just like how they celebrate back home.
I'll end this post with the recipe for Seri muka. I've made this many times in the past few weeks. Its just absolutely delicious. The recipe is from lily's
300g glutinous rice, wash and soak in water for 4 hours, drain
180ml coconut milk
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
Egg Custard Layer
3 large eggs
4 tbsp flour
4 tbsp rice flour
350ml coconut milk
150g castor sugar
1 tbsp pandan paste
1/4 tsp salt
1. Drain rice and steam on 22cm tray for 20 minutes.
2. Remove from heat, fluff up the rice and pour in the coconut milk, sugar and salt. Mix well. Steam for another 20-25 minutes or till cooked.
3. Using a spoon or spatula,press cooked glutinous rice firmly and use another tray to level pressed rice.
4. Sieve the 2 flours mixture and add them to lightly beaten eggs. Strain mixture. Add coconut milk, pandan paste, green color,salt and sugar.
5 . Cook on high in the microwave, 1 min at a time until mixture is slightly thicken.
6. Pour 1/2 of this egg custard over the steamed glutinous rice and steam for 10 - 15 minutes until cooked. Use a fork and scatch surface, then pour in the balance of the custard, steam further another 10 - 15 minutes until cooked. (steaming time varies depending on the heat of steamer)
7. Cut kueh into serving slices when cooled.
Expect my triumphant return in december once all this fuss about exams is over. Till then, au revoir and bon appetit.
Ps-too all the students who read my blog and are going to sit for exams.. GOOD LUCK!!!!!