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Girls' Best Friend

Bright and sparkly. Gemstones came to my mind when I was removing this Dragon Fruit and Orange jelly from the mould. Like a combination of gemstones...rubies, amber and diamonds, all in one!

Dragon's Eyes

The literal translation for the name of a small brown, juicy exotic fruit from the lands of Asia, known as Longan in Chinese, packed into these muffins


A taste from the humble beginnings, the Long Bean Rice brings back beautiful memories of the yesteryears

Light and Fluffy

Lemon, Yogurt and Cranberries~a nice blend of flavours in a light and fluffy chiffon cake

Bread Stories

Asian style buns ~ Popular as breakfast food or snack, sweet/savoury fillings wrapped in soft, cottony bread

Monday, 13 February 2012

The Stomach Way

Some people say "Old tricks don't work" but there's also a Cantonese saying when translated means the opposite, "Do not worry if it's an old trick, what matters most is it works".  I say both are right.  Some tricks do go out of date but there's one which I think  never will...I do  believe one way(yes, one way, not the only way) to a man's heart is through his stomach :)   A meal made out of love will always melt his heart.  And that was the path that I took for hubs' birthday...Happy Birthday, sweetheart! May God bless you with good health, overflowing happiness, wealth (yes, in that order)  and continue to make you a righteous leader for our family.

First up, I made black pepper prawns with pandan rice.    The recipe for this black pepper prawn is courtesy of my sister.  Her black pepper crabs are just so heavenly.  I used her recipe on prawns instead.

Of course, I had to make a cake for him.  Birthdays, for me  are just too good excuses to make a not so plain cake.  I tried this Orange Chocolate Baked Cheese cake.  Shredded some orange peel and shaped into a heart.

Inside out...

This cake tasted really good.  The tangy aroma was so evident.  It went well with the chocolate sponge.  The recipe was courtesy of Alex Goh.

So, that was how I feasted my man :) Recipes? Will post it another day, too tired for it right now...

So, fancy going the stomach way for Valentine's? Let's celebrate tomorrow!  Have a great Valentine's Day with your loved ones!

Thursday, 9 February 2012

My First Blog Award

I was pleasantly surprised and happy when Wen of Wen's Delight shared a blog award with me. This is my first blog award, I am thrilled! I am warmed by the kindness, friendship and encouragement that comes with it. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Wen!

Liebster is German and translates to
the English word “dearest”or” favorite”. It’s meant for up-and-coming blogs with less than "200 followers".

Here are the rules:
  • Thank your Liebster Blog Award presenter on your blog.
  • Link back to the blogger who presented the award to you.
  • Copy and paste the blog award on your blog.
  • Present the Liebster Blog Award to 5 blogs of 200 followers or less who you feel deserve to be noticed. (Some say just 3 or more blogs of less than 200 followers each).
  • Let them know they have been chosen by leaving a comment at their blog.

I would like to share this award with firstly:-
  • Frozen Wings - For all her support and encouraging words, although we only know each other virtually (for now that is). Hop over to her blog as she has so many great recipes to share.
And to 4 other awesome blogs that I feel are special in their own ways (check out their blogs to find out):-

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Fried Chempedak and Mum's Not So Secret Recipe

We had these for tea yesterday.  Mum made them and they tasted really great.  And I learned that she has a special deep frying batter recipe which I think is worth sharing.  

What are these? A local fruit fried in batter, in a manner similar to banana fritters.   A street food found  when the fruits are in season.  The name of the fruit is Chempedak, an exotic fruit native to South East Asia.  I searched around and I don't think there's an English name for it, but its close cousin known as Nangka in the local language is Jackfruit in English.  Some say the fruit looks ugly, its edible arils are kinda soft and gooey adding to the ugly definition.  But they have a very strong aroma (which some can't stand, something of the durian category)  and they are sweet tasting.  They can be eaten raw but taste heavenly when fried in batter.

A look at the arils, I love the beautiful orangey hue.  Depending on the size of the fruit, one can get around 50-100 arils in a fruit.

And this is how they looked after being fried.  It's a little unfortunate that the arils are kinda thin for this particular fruit (think Forrest Gump and his box of chocolate).  Note the nice, crisp golden brown and non greasy thin layer of batter.   Can you see its gooey texture??

Now, coming to Mum's special recipe...Typically batter for deep frying would be made from flour and water with a little salt added in.  Out of curiosity, I asked Mum for her recipe because I found hers very light, thin, crunchy and most importantly not greasy.  I wasn't expecting anything extra ordinary but I was pleasantly surprised to know that she added 2 tablespoons of instant oats into her batter! Way to go Mum, such a brilliant way to sneak oats into our diet! Am not sure if it resulted in the nice texture of the batter but it sure didn't taste like it was there!  Besides oats, she used a ratio of 20% rice flour to 80% wheat flour plus a teaspoon baking powder.   Sorry, no exact measurements, simply because Mum doesn't think it's necessary.   Some wise words from her though, the batter should be slightly thick, not runny.  Classic example of Mum's knows best!  

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Nespresso in my cake

Thank God for great household inventions, they do make lives better, don't they?   I have a few favorites (those that I give myself/hubs a pat on the back for buying them), of course there are some regrets hiding around the house too :)   Being the self-confessed coffee lover that I am, one of my recent favourite is the Nespresso machine, brewed espresso almost at an instance from the comfort of your home.  Hmm, I can almost smell it...  How about putting them in some cake?? I always wondered if using brewed coffee would give coffee cake a stronger aroma.  I am not sure if it's the recipes that I used but somehow it is never as prominent as I would like it to be.  So, I tried...

I followed a new recipe instead of using the chiffon recipe that I normally used.  The cake turned out nice and soft.  As for the aroma?? Yes, it was there, slightly stronger but again not as strong as I wished for it to be.  That made me wonder, why is it that store bought ones have this very strong coffee  aroma be it cakes, bread or even sweets?  I think I know why (after scrutinising the ingredients listed), it's coming from some form of artificial flavouring or maybe some coffee essence if we are lucky.  I think I will settle for coffee bakes as it is, I must convince myself if I want anything stronger, I should just make myself a cuppa instead...

Source : The cookbook chronicles, adapted from Five Roses Cookbook

Note : My variation in blue.  Slightly less sweetness and dividing the sugar between egg yolk and white batter to help stabilize the egg whites)

  • 3/4 cup brewed coffee,
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 cup granulated sugar (3/4 cup brown sugar)
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt (fine sea salt)
  • 5 large eggs, separated
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil (or other neutral flavored oil, like canola or peanut) 
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract (obmitted)
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar (obmitted)
  1. Brew the coffee, and allow it to cool. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, sugar (1/3 of sugar) and salt.
  2. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and add in egg yolks, vegetable oil, brewed coffee, and vanilla. Stir til combined. 
  3. In a separate bowl, add cream of tartar to egg whites. With an electric beater (or stand-mixer), beat until medium-firm peaks. (Beat egg whites till soft peak, add in 2/3 of sugar in two additions until stiff peaks)
  4. Pour 1/3 of the coffee batter into the whipped egg whites, and gently fold the batter in until combined. Add another 1/3 of the batter in, and repeat until the batter is completely incorporated into the egg whites, taking care not to over-mix. (Try not to deflate the egg whites–the air is what keeps this cake light.) 
  5. Pour batter into chiffon cake pan and bake for 45 minutes at 175C degrees. Turn up the temperature up to 180 degrees and continue to bake for about 10 minutes more. 
  6. Invert the cake until cool. Run a knife along the edge of the pan to release.


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