Archive for the ‘Domesticated’ Category

Simple Walnut Cake Recipe

March 3, 2013

IMG_20130303_160437a

Half of the mixture with chopped walnuts

After a long absence of blog posts, I thought of sharing a recipe of making the simplest walnut cake. I gotten the walnuts and totally forgotten about it! So, since there are also other ingredients ready for baking, I thought, might as well make a walnut cake.

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The walnut cake is ready! Never mind the darker brown color. It tasted just fine! Haha!

Yield: Two 9 inches-shallow pan cakes (Half the recipe if you want to make only 1 pan)
Time taken: 45 minutes

Ingredients

250g of butter (unsalted or salted doesn’t matter. Just add half teaspoon of salt if it’s unsalted)
1 cup of caster sugar (add half a cup more if you prefer sweeter cake)
1 ½ cup of plain flour
2 tbsp baking powder
2 eggs
2 tsp of vanilla essence
1 cup of sour cream
200g – 250g of chopped walnuts (Depending on how much you love walnuts!)
4 tbsp of chocolate shavings (I used cooking chocolate and shaved it)

Method

1. Preheat oven at 180C.
2. Cream the butter with sugar, followed by the eggs and vanilla essence.
3. Fold in the sour cream.
4. Sieve the flour together with baking powder, whisk for a bit.
5. Fold in flour mixture into the butter mixture in two batches.
6. Fold in the chocolate shavings.
7. Pour half the mixture into the greased pans in equal portions. Sprinkle chopped walnuts all over it.
8. Pour in the remaining of the mixture into the pans. Sprinkle with remaining chopped walnuts on top.
9. Bake for 20-25 minutes or till a toothpick inserted into it comes out clean.

You will get a fluffy and light walnut cake! The sour cream gives the dairy taste to the cake, moist and dense, as opposed to using milk which would evaporate and cause the cake to dry up.

Happy baking!

Peri-Peri Goodness

January 28, 2013

Ever since I got Kim’s recipe on how to make your own peri-peri sauce, I think I’ve tried numerous ways to serve the much loved sauce. I like it so much that I bookmarked the recipe page on my computer, as well as my phone.

Well, you can always do the short cut by buying the bottle of sauce from the supermarket, at about Rm10.90 each but nothing beats making fresh peri-peri sauce on your own! You can check it out on how to make the sauce from Kim’s blog.

I’ve made slight amendments though, to suit my palate. I added a tablespoon of paprika, one whole lemon instead of half and of coz, add more cili padi because I love my peri-peri super hot! The results are amazing! Everybody loves it! Thanks, Kim for this awesome recipe! And it really makes a big difference using red capsicum instead of green ones. Oh, I’ve tried! :D

The sauce is really good to go with any meat that you like. Heck! I think you can even use it as salad dressing! So here are some of the dishes I made and diversify by using just this sauce.

peri chicken thigh

Peri-peri chicken thigh with mashed potatoes and salad

Baked as per Kim’s recipe

peri pork

Fried pork in peri-peri sauce

Marinade overnight and stir fried in vegetable oil

  peri-peri chicken pizza

Peri-peri chicken with capsicums, onions and mushrooms pizza

Marinade overnight and stir fried in little vegetable oil.  Add on chopped capsicum, mushrooms and lastly onions. Lay generously on ready made pizza dough, slightly oiled with olive oil. Add on peri-peri sauce if you like, sprinkled with grated mozzarella and cheddar cheese. Bake for 8-10 minutes at 220C.

Chinese New Year Shopping

January 27, 2013

I guess the few days off, and a long weekend is good for some serious CNY shopping. Didn’t want to be so disorganized like last year, I actually wrote down a list of things to buy this time. Last year, ever since I learn how to make nian gao (sticky rice cake) from scratch, I had to drive to the bakery shop like 5x to add on ingredients and also packaging.. because one after another, my relatives kept asking me to make them a nice pair of fish! I guess not this year. They must pay! Nothing comes free now! Times are bad! Haha!

Was at Tesco Kepong last Thursday for some CNY shopping. The beeline was unbelievable! And this is probably the first time I see a hypermarket ran out of trolleys. I guess it’s good to just take whatever trolley you might get from the parking lot on your way to the shopping mall because you definitely won’t get any trolleys, standing at the trolley counter! I guess it wasn’t so bad the last time. Even on normal weekends, hypermarkets won’t run out of trolleys.

We bought the usual stuffs for CNY – some groundnuts, butter, flour, sugar, canned food, drinks, etc. We don’t have to  buy nian gao and cookies anymore because I will be baking them. In fact, I took opportunity this long weekend to test run to bake some cookies before CNY – to make sure they are edible! Luckily, Quan Quan, Lok Lok, Sasha and Ern Ern enjoyed the cookies and they even give a few comments to improvise it! Actually, they are very diplomatic.. everything also say very nice. Haha! And the kids enjoy the heart shaped butter cookies the most.. and it’s probably the most difficult to make. It’s difficult to make sure the dough is chill enough for the cookie cutter to slice through. In our tropical climate, I find, we could only slice maximum 10 cookies and we had to put the dough back to the fridge to harden it again! So, I won’t be making butter cookies anymore because of this! The cookie custard taste more or less the same and is much more easier to make. Mom already made her order for salted chocolate cookies. She said, they smell really good and nice to eat. For someone who dislike eating chocolates, I am surprised she said the salted chocolate cookie is nice!

Another 2 weeks to go before we welcome the year of Snake.. I’ve made some plans – when to start making nian gao, fatt gou and cookies.. we are very glad that, this year, we don’t have to clean the house too much because we already did during the renovation and painting of our house. We will just need a few hours to spruce things up before CNY. Hmmph… perhaps it’s time to use some credit card points to redeem the electric cooker to be used as steamboat this CNY…

So, how is your preparation for CNY?

Broccoli Casserole

November 25, 2012

 Broccoli Casserole

I think you guys probably have seen the photo above. Well, over the weekend, I have been receiving recipe requests for this dish. I actually google looking for lasagnas recipes but somehow ended up looking at casseroles. Way easier, simpler and faster to make! So, here goes.

The original recipe is here. This is my modified version. (Can feed 10 people!)

Ingredients

• A good hand palm sized broccoli, cut into pieces
• 1 big can of Campbell mushroom soup – you can choose potage with mushroom too.
• 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
• 1 cup mayonnaise
• 1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar
• 113g of unsalted butter, cut into pieces (Half block of butter. Why unsalted? Coz the mushroom soup and cheese themself are already too salty!)
• Pepper (optional- coz the second time I made it, I forgot and it still taste good)
• 4 pieces of Hup Seng’s cream cracker cap Ping Pong

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Brush some oil/butter onto two 5.5 inches baking dish or a 9 inch baking dish (up to you).
2. Steam broccoli until crisp-tender, 7 minutes. Transfer to a bowl of ice water.
3. Mix soup, eggs, mayonnaise, cheese, butter and pepper in a saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until melted and combined. (To avoid the cheese from being burnt in the hot pot, I used a wok filled with hot water, and cook the mixture in a pot, placed in the hot water – experience!)
4. If you find the mixture is too thick to be stirred, add 2 tbsp of milk. (Not too much, otherwise, the casserole would be runny)
5. Pour cheese mixture on top. Drain broccoli; spread evenly in baking dishes. Sprinkle with crackers. Bake for 30 minutes.

To reheat

If you plan to leave it overnight in the fridge, you may also reheat it in the morning for breakfast/other meals. If you are using microwave, perhaps 2-3 minutes heating would suffice (not too sure). I am using oven, so I leave the dish for 10 minutes after taking it out from the fridge, then reheat it in oven, at 180°C for 15 minutes.

Notes

Eat it with whole grain wrap or bread (because it can be too salty for some people). Delicious!

Happy trying!

Lemon Cheese Cakes

August 27, 2012


Tadah!! I can bake! Lol!

I was in the mood for some cheese cake and I googled for an easy recipe. Since I’ve been baking cakes, getting recipes from Rasa Malaysia, I thought I might do the same for lemon cheese cake. After all, the butter cake using the recipe here turned out to be great!

Somehow I couldn’t get the crispy looking, slight yellowish colored topping as photographed in Rasa Malaysia (then today I realized, I just put in two eggs instead of three. I wonder if it would somehow affect the outcome?), and one of the mini cakes actually starting to crack at 16 minutes into baking, to keep safe, I switched the oven heating to bottom rod only. In case, the cakes didn’t turn out to be well cooked with the top overly cooked!

Apart from following the recipe here to the dot, I also whipped up a lemon curd – in case the mini lemon cheese cakes started to crack, in my case 1/12 did! So lemon curd would be a good alternative too, to blueberries and raspberries which cost a bomb here! (Blueberries at Rm7.90 for 100g and raspberries Rm19.90!! for 100g at Jusco) Well, one good news though, even though the surface of the cheese cake cracked, after you removed it from the oven, it somehow closes back! Haha!

If you are interested to make these, follow Rasa Malaysia’s Mini Lemon Cheese Cakes recipe and as for the lemon curd, as alternative to the fruits toppings, I used the recipe from Joy of Baking. Took me no more than 2 hours (including prep, waiting for the cakes to cool down, decorate). Try it! It’s easy and simple!

To ease your reference, I cut and paste the relevant paragraphs and recipe here.

Make 12 | Prep Time: 15 minutes | Bake Time: 22 minutes

Ingredients:

Crust:

3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs (7 graham crackers)
1 tablespoon brown sugar, packed
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Filling:

12 oz cream cheese, room temperature (approximately 340g)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon lemon zest
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons lemon juice

Toppings: (Optional)

Blueberry
Raspberry
Lemon slices

or Lemon Curd (See below)

Method:

In a bowl, add in the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar and butter. Mix well. Divide the crumbs and press into bottom of the 12 soufflé baking cups. Refrigerate the crust.

Preheat the oven at 350°F. (About 176°C)

Attach the metal blade to your food processor. Pulse the cream cheese until smooth. Scrap the side of the bowl with a spatula as needed. Add in the sugar and pulse again until smooth. Next, add the sour cream and lemon zest and pulse until smooth.

Add 1 egg at a time and pulse until combined. Lastly, add the vanilla extract and lemon juice. Scrap down the side and give it a few more pulses until smooth.

Remove the baking cups from the refrigerator. Place them in a muffin pan. Scoop the filling mixture into the baking cups.

Bake them for 20-22 minutes or until the centers are firm. Remove the cupcakes from the muffin pan to cool completely on a cooling rack.

Chill the cupcakes in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight. Garnish with the fruit toppings before serving.

Cook’s Note:

I used the 3.25 oz soufflé paper baking cups. (I used cupcakes paper)

For lemon curd

Lemon Curd Recipe:

3 large eggs

3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated white sugar

1/3 cup (80 ml) fresh lemon juice

4 tablespoons (56 grams) butter, at room temperature

1 tablespoon finely shredded lemon zest

Lemon Curd: In a stainless steel bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water, whisk together the eggs, sugar, and lemon juice until blended. Cook, stirring constantly (to prevent it from curdling), until the mixture becomes thick (like sour cream or a hollandaise sauce) (160 degrees F or 71 degrees C). This will take approximately 10 minutes. Remove from heat and immediately pour through a fine strainer to remove any lumps. Cut the butter into small pieces and whisk into the mixture until the butter has melted. Add the lemon zest and cover immediately to prevent a skin from forming. Let cool until it of pouring consistency.


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