Monday, July 29, 2013

Tiramisu Recipe

I look forward to the weekly Hunger Management column in The Straits Times by food writer, Tan Hsueh Yun as they provide inspiration for dishes I want to try. Cut-outs of Ceviche ("cooking" raw fish with the acid in citrus juice), Japanese beef bowl and the Hot spinach and artichoke dip, etc. are still lingering in my to-do folder.

Today's recipe is a throwback. Early this year she wrote about Tiramisu/"terrormisu". This homey take on the Italian 'pick me up' dessert is really easy and delicious. You can prepare it the night before you serve and the actual preparation of the dessert takes about 15 minutes. The best part of making your own Tiramisu is that you customise to your liking - more or less booze, type of booze (cognac, rum, kahlua), espresso or ristretto (strength of coffee), sweetness.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe

I don't usually frost my cupcakes as I like my cupcakes plain. Whilst frostings are delicious, I still remember how much butter went into my Swiss Meringue Buttercream and so I very much rather to reserve my calorie intake for another cupcake.

This prompted me try a frosting that is perhaps slightly healthier - Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting. I played around with the remaining block cream cheese I had, adding in some butter, melted chocolate and icing sugar. That gives a delicious frosting without tasting too sweet or "cheesy" (somewhat ironic-sounding I know)

How to make a piping bag

As much as I love baking, I am cautious when it comes to expenses. I am always willing to spend more on higher quality ingredients as they go into making pastries which my family and friends eat. However, I try to control my other more superficial urges for baking items which I do not use often, e.g. a piping bag.

It is easy to make your own piping bag - just use a plastic bag or baking paper. I recommend using a plastic bag as you can secure the sides easily with tape. Some baking/wax paper might be tricky as tape will not hold and you have to use staples. The illustrated steps below are doing using a sheet of baking paper as it is clearer in pictures. You don't need to be an origami master - 5 steps are all you need!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Ben & Jerry's Strawberry Cheesecake Cupcakes Recipe

One of my all time-favourite desserts is ice-cream. Nothing beats pigging out in front of your favourite drama serial together with a tub of B&J's or Häagen-Dazs. It is much more economical to get a tub(s) rather than getting them in scoops in their outlets (you can't seriously be satisfied with just 1 or 2 scoops...)

I chanced upon this interesting recipe by Norwegian baker/blogger/author, Manuela Kjeilen. Before I go on further, I need to clarify this; this is not an ice-cream cupcake recipe; it's about using ice-cream as a main ingredient to flavour normal cupcakes. What an excellent way to clear my freezer of half-eaten tubs of ice-cream.

Tteokbokki/Topokki (Spicy Korean Rice Cakes) Recipe

Tteokbokki, Teokbokki, ddeokbokki, topokki or dukboki, all refer to a very famous Korean street snack - Hot and spicy rice cakes.


Allow me to declare my love for this humble looking dish;

Monday, July 15, 2013

Red Bean Mochi Recipe

With some leftover glutinous rice flour from my previous Muah Chee (chewy rice dough with roasted peanuts) attempt, I decided to go for a dessert which I enjoy loads, Red Bean Mochi.

This is one dessert which goes by many names; to the Japanese, it is known as Daifuku whereas the Koreans call it Chapssalddeok. Either ways, it is a dessert confection of mochi/chewy rice cake stuffed with a sweet filling, usually sweetened red bean paste made from red/azkui beans.

1st attempt - A little rough looking...

2nd attempt - Success!

Soft baked Chewy Dark Chocolate Cookies Recipe

I am a huge fan of chewy, soft baked cookies. For those who have not had a chance to try such cookies, make a trip to Subway or a nearby grocery store and look for Pepperidge Farm soft baked series. Soft baked cookies are simply delicious - eat them plain or dunk them in milk. So start grabbing your favourite chocolate and make soft baked chewy cookies with me!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Matcha/Green Tea Cheese Tart Recipe

Green Tea Mochi Cakes with Red BeanChilled Green Tea Beancurd (tau huey)Soft Centered Green Tea Cupcakes, Green Tea Chiffon Cake (to be shared soon...) I love the taste of green tea and here's another recipe to add on to my growing list, Matcha/Green Tea Cheese Tart!

My recipe is shared by Chef Tomoko Higashiguchi of Patisserie Glace from herworldplus. It seemed pretty easy, with steps similar to my previous Cheese Tart recipe but flavoured with Matcha/green tea and addition of gelatine and yogurt. Usually, in no-bake cheesecakes, either yogurt or whipping cream is used but this time around, both are used. Interesting to see how those two will gel together!

Basic Tart Crust Recipe

Having bought a tart pan recently, I have been somewhat in a tart-making craze. Tart crusts are very easy and quick to make, either by a food processor or by hand and you can freeze them up to two weeks in the freezer. They are quick-fix desserts, just bake the tart for 20-25 minutes and you can make anything with them, fruit tarts, chocolate tarts, apple pies, etc. The list is endless.

The recipe I am sharing is fuss-free; no baking weights are needed, don't need to roll out the dough (which necessitates more washing). Oh and get a non-stick pan; it saves you the hassle of greasing the pan. Quick, easy, simple.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Baked Potato Wedges Recipe

There are days when all we want is some comfort food - french fries! As much as I love my fried food, I am mindful of how unhealthy are, especially when you get them in restaurants or fast food joints. If you had had a chance to peep at restaurants doing deep-frying, you would notice that the oil is a dark murky colour, resultant of repeated use and even re-use.

To side step that, the best way would be prepare them at home but frying requires copious amount of oil and not to mention the amount of cleaning that needs to be done. When craving calls, the best way would be to think of the next best alternative. I figured if I can't get my french fries, I can get some potato wedges baked to a crisp.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Japanese Steamed Egg (Chawanmushi) Recipe

There are many versions of steamed eggs. Some of my favourites include those with 3 types of eggs; normal chicken egg, century egg (pi dan) and salted egg. Another version that is often served in restaurants is the combination of century egg (pi dan), salted egg and spinach

A simple variation of steamed egg is Chawanmushi or Japanese steamed egg custard. All you need is some stock and eggs.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Japanese Strawberry Shortcake Encore!

I decided to make this cake again as it is one of my all time favourites.

You can refer to my previous posting for more information on how to make this cake. This time round, I used President brand dairy whipping cream and the cream tasted better!

Pancakes Recipe

I love weekends brunch as it is always a relaxing time to enjoy your food and coffee with your friends and family. On a lazy Saturday afternoon, I decided to whip up my own brunch rather than heading out.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Basic Sponge Cake Recipe

Having a good basic sponge cake recipe is great for many reasons; they are delicious plain but can also be dressed up to become a fruit cake, etc. I love a good sponge cake that is fluffy, light and a foolproof method to ensure that is through the egg-separation technique used commonly to make chiffon cakes.


Thursday, July 4, 2013

Lemon Cream Cheese Cupcakes Recipe

Using what I had in my pantry; cream cheese, lemons and lemon curd, I decided to make lemon cream cheese cupcakes. Adding lemon to cream cheese makes the cupcake lighter and the cupcakes resemble mini lemon cheese cakes.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Thai Vermicelli Tuna Salad Recipe

Going for a more oriental flavour, I decided to pair thai-style vermicelli with my greens. For the additional spice, I topped it off with some chilli tuna.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Lemon Curd Tart Recipe

With the hot weather, one naturally craves for a light and quick dessert. Using an sweet buttery almond-based tart with an extra sprinkling of toasted almond meal topped up with tangy lemon curd is the natural way to go.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Lemon Curd Recipe

Lemons are nutritious fruits, packed with Vitamin C and are juicy, tangy and flavourful. They are cheap, readily available all year round and you can use them in your baking, cooking, drinks and even cleaning!

Lemon curd is a dessert spread made with lemon juice, eggs and sugar. You can pair lemon curd with scones, tarts, bread muffins, etc. - the choice is endless. Try to avoid store-bought lemon curd as they are very easy to make. 30 minutes is all you need, including preparatory time.


80ml freshly squeezed lemon juice (I used about 1.5 lemons)
150g white sugar
3 eggs
Some freshly grated lemon zest (I used 1 lemon worth, you can omit if you do not have a grater)
60g unsalted butter (I finally got to try President brand!)

1. In a metal bowl, whisk together eggs, lemon juice and sugar. Using the double broiler method, heat the mixture. The water in the broiler should be simmering.

2. Whisk for 8-10 minutes till mixture thickens. Whisking constantly helps to prevent clumps from forming. The curd is done when the mixture is thick, or reaches a mayonnaise-like texture. In the enlarged picture below, you can see that whisking leaves visible traces behind.

3. Remove bowl from heat. Add in lemon zest and butter. Mix well till butter dissolves. There should be a glossy tint to your lemon curd.


When using a grater to remove zest from lemon, avoid scrapping at the white portions as those are bitter. You only want the yellow portion, which is the outermost layer.

If you get clumps in your mixture, sieve your mixture before adding in the butter.

You can prepare and chill the lemon curd a few days before use. When leaving in fridge, use a cling wrap to cover bowl. The cling wrap should touch and cover the surface of curd to prevent an extra layer from forming.

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