Thursday, December 17, 2009

Curry Chickpeas

This is a super quick and simple chickpeas recipe. All it takes is 5 minutes:

1 can of chickpeas, drained
2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 ripe tomato, cut into small pieces
2 tablespoon white sesame seeds
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon of curry powder
1 teaspoon of coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon tumeric powder

Heat oil, add mustard seeds. When mustard seeds start to pop, add tomato pieces, curry and tumeric powder. Cook a couple of minutes then add remaining ingresients. Stir and cook 2-3 minutes. Turn off heat and scoop to a plate. Easy isn't it? Nice when serve with fresh coriander and as a side dish to rendang beef.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Pancakes with strawberries and bananas

There's a saying 'breakfast is the most important meal of the day'. Well this might be true but somehow in our household breakfast is something you eat on the run, at the office ....

I have been wanting to make pancake for breakfast, and to have a proper sit down breakfast after my last attempt in cooking a proper big breakfast. Last weekend I finally did and using a very simple pancake recipe.

1 cup self raising flour
1.25 cup milk
pinch of salt
1 egg

Method: Sift flour and salt in a bowl, make a well and add egg and milk (I added the milk slowly instead of one go), whisk till all combined and the mixture is smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and leave for atleast 0.5 hour to 1 hour before cooking. When cooking the pancake, it's easier to put the pancake mixture into a jug, this way it is easier to control the pouring into the pan. Make sure the pan is hot before pouring ther mixture for cooking especially if using a non stick pan. When bubles start to form, the pancake is ready to be turned. Serve with honey or maple syrup with your favourite fruit or drizzle with strawberry sauce or melted chocolate, Yum!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Green Tea Pound Cake

This is a cake that I make repeatedly as I like the texture and the not-so-obvious cheese flavour and of course the green tea flavour. The result is always consistent and the method is uncomplicated and ingredients are usually readily in my pantry/fridge.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Apple Cinnamon Cake

The first time I made this cake must be at least 11 years ago. I was still in Uni and living with a few girls who also enjoy cooking when we are not stress over exams, assignments. I didn't even keep the recipe. I stumbled on this recipe again in one of Donna Hay's cookbook recently and thought I will make it again for friends' birthday.

Chinese Peanuts and Chicken Feet Soup

Many think Chicken Feet is an acquired taste, even some of my chinese friends hesitate at the challenge of trying out chicken feet at yum cha. I must say cleaning the chicken feet is quite a weird experience for me, as i needed to clip the nails! There wasn't a lot more preparation as the chicken feet were very clean when i bought them from butcher. 10 chicken feet only cost about AUD2. This soup is relatively easy to make, the ingredients are: chicken bones (left over from deboning chicken maryland), I also added a few small pieces of pork gravy, about 1/2 cup of raw peanuts, 10 chicken feets and salt to taste at the end.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Roast Leg of Lamb

Roast Leg of Lamb with Bernaise Sauce and Mashed Potato


Saturday, November 7, 2009

Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

This cake was inpired by the Hummigbird Bakery Cookbook my colleagues and friends gave me as part of my work farewell gift. There are many tempting recipes in there but the carrot cake captured my heart. I must thank my friend who organised a guinea pig session for the girls where everyone is to cook/bake something they haven't made/baked before. HM and I teamed up to make this cake together. The cake making process was fun and we did make a few silly mistakes but that's part of the fun and learning. At the end we realised we fogot to put in the vanilla essence but thankfully this is not critical to the success of the cake.

The cake came out really nice, fluffy and fresh. We thought we have grated the carrot too coarsely but it appeared to be just right. The weather was very hot that day and we didn't have enough time to chill the cake long enough otherwise the frosting will look a bit better, it was looking a little tired when we arrived at the friend's house.

Fried Koay Teow

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Lemon Curd Cookies

Apart from chocolate, lemon curd is something i can't put down once I started eating. Am Absolutely in love with the sweet savoury citrus favour comined with butter yum yum.

These cookies are best eaten fresh from oven as the cookies are still crunchy on the outside and the lemon curd is soft and moist. I let the cookies cooled on a rack then stored into airtight container but because of the lemon curd which is moist, the cookies texture will turn into softer/chewy the next day. It is still delicous, just don't expect it to be crunchy. I baked 2 batches 2 days apart as the lemon curd recipe yielded too much lemon curd and I have lots of left over!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Assam Prawns

Assam Prawns is a Penang speciality dish. I love this dish, the sourish tamrind taste and the sweetness of the prawns is such a good combination. You are guaranteed to find this dish at any Economy Rice stall in Penang. I haven't eaten this dish for many many years, I had the impression it's messy handling tamarind pulp and had no idea where to get it too!

Thanks to the increasing migration of Asians to Melbourne, many Chinese grocery stores now sell ingredients that weren't available years ago, and they also come in easy to use form. Like this Tamarind Pulp Concentrate I found in the store the other day, all i needed to do is to marinade the prawns with this concentrate then pan fried. How easy can it be?!! I am so happy to be able to eat this dish again and it brought back many fond memories of Penang.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Chinese Pumpkin Cake (Steamed & Pan Fried)

Pumpkin is in season, only $0.99 per kg in a green grocer. I have wanted to make chinese pumpkin cake for awhile, first time tempted was when my friend Sarah tried it out in a care group. I finally stop procrastinating and gave it a go, following Florence's recipe for both the steamed and pan fried version.

I find the pumpkin taste not as strong as i would like it to be, might try to modify a bit next time. Red bean paste does go well with the pumpkin cake. I used the ready made red bean paste from chinese shop but it is a bit sweet. But then i can't really complain too much because I am too lazy to make my own red bean paste from scratch :)

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Radish Cake (蘿蔔糕)

Chinese Radish cake is one of my favourite yum cha item. It is usually steamed and then pan fried before being served in chinese restaurant, but I like the steamed version. Eventhough the pan fried version is yummy (especially if it's a little bit burnt) but the steamed version is full of unpretentious radish flavour, I just love it!

What is even better is it's actually quite easy to make and only involved a few simple ingredients: radish, rice flour, chinese mushrooms, dried shrimps and chinese sausages (I used pork meat instead of chinese sausage as it is healthier and taste good too). Using 2.5kg of radish i was able to fill 6 small aluminium round trays to share with friends and family.

Friday, July 31, 2009

No knead Focaccia

Had been itching to try out this no-knead Focaccia recipe for awhile now. This is a really easy and minimal work recipe and the result is fantastic! David and I enjoyed it so much I decided to bake it again with variation to the toppings tomorrow!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Mocha Choc Muffin

Have not done much baking in the last 3 months due to travelling, family comittment, got a cold in between too and of course work! The longer this drags on the more lack of motivation to bake. This week I was inspired by a good friend and thought i'd start by baking something quick and simple - muffins.

This recipe only takes me 30 mins to prepare and another 20 minutes to bake. The recipe was originally chocolate muffin but I had dark mocha chocolate block in the fridge so this nicely turned out to be mocha chocolate muffins!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Crispy Chicken With Mango Kerabu

Had a craving for this dish hence made it for a gathering eventhough it's not mango season.
Supposed to pour the sauce over the chicken but as the sauce is spicy, decided to leave it for people to add the sauce themselves in case some don't take spicy food.

I am quite happy with the crispy chicken, it will nicer if served fresh after frying as it was crsipy.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Mixed berries muffin

Baked muffins again as this requires very little time compared to baking a cake. Used up the fresh blueberries in the fridge and some frozrn raspberries I usually keep in freezer, add some flour, egg, sugar, milk and baking powder - bake it in a 180C oven for 15 min, then out come this yummy muffins.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Chocolate Chip Muffin

It has been 2-3 weeks since I last baked something. This is partly due to the extreme hot weather in Victoria (4 consecutive hot days with temperature soaring above 40C one week). On this Valentines Day, I managed to find a time gap of about 1 hour to bake something. I decided to bake some muffins as it calls for much less time and effort (preparation about 25 min and baking time 15 min). Added chocolate toppings and decorated with lollies and they actually look quite cute and tempting :>

[a side story: after baking, a little cow discovered the muffins and drew nearer and nearer towards the muffins. Before I realised, it was devouring the muffins! I've got pictures to prove it!]

Monday, January 26, 2009

Happy Birthday Yuski

Though this blog is mainly about my cooking experiments, I can't resist sharing the most recent photos taken for my Yuski. In fact today is his special day, his birthday! Thanks Yuski for all the joy, the fun and cheefulness which brihgten my days.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Taro puff pastry - 芋茸酥

Yam or Taro is one my favourite - Taro buns, Taro bread, Taro milk tea, Taro sponge cake, Taro paste (called "Or Nee" in Teochew), Taro pastry, Steamed Chinese Taro Cake, Taro fried rice, the list goes on and on and on ......!

Have been thinking of making something with Taro for a long time, mainly to satisfy my own cravings. After watching an online video on Taro puffs, I decided to give this a go. When Esther came over last Sat I "convinced" her into helping me making the pastry together. We broke the process into 2 sessions, preparing the pastry and Taro filling then went out for yummy japanese dinner and came back to do the fun part of rolling and wrapping the taro. However for some reasons we are yet to figure out, the pastry wasn't as elastic as it supposed to be hence it took us quite awhile to wrap (or rather force) the taro into the pastry and sealed it.

The baking temperature instruction given in the recipe was a bit confusing and we had to re-adjust the temperature to bake the puffs. It has upper and lower temperature (maybe because it's different type of oven?).

We are quite happy with the result in general, maybe I will try modifying and make green tea puffs next time.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Banana Yogurt Cake

I bet almost every passionate baker would have a favourite banana cake recipe up their sleeves. Banana cake seems to be a favourite at most occasions and it is also a good way to make use of the otherwise too ripe to eat bananas. For those banana cake lovers, it is true that what is someone's trash is another's treasures. What I mean is some people would throw away bananas which has blackspots, probably thinking it would be smelly and rotten! But this is the best time to make banana cake as you need over ripe banana to make good banan cakes!

This is not my usual banana cake recipe but I've always wanted to try out one with yogurt. To balance the healthy yogurt, I added chocolate chips ... hmmm now it is a "well-balanced" banana cake ;)

Friday, January 2, 2009

First Chiffon Cake - Green Tea Chiffon Cake with Mango

The clock was ticking away last night and I was struggling to find the motivation to bake a cake for a friend's birthday. The lack of motivation was mainly due to fatigue (well I have been on holiday for more than a week so first day back at work today took a lot out of me haha). Was deciding between buying one or baking one then I thought of trying out chiffon cake. Have been brewing this idea for a long time but I don't have a chiffon baking pan so put this idea on hold for awhile. I finally gathered my enerygy and started weighing the sugar, flour etc and then suddenly I seemed to get more and more alert and the tiredness seemed to gradually go away! Amazing ... maybe this is called cooking therapy?

Initially the plan was to use red bean as the cake filling but at the end I used mango which is in season. I forgot to take a picture of the cross section of the cake, but amazingly it looked really nice - green colour contrasts with the rich yellow mango colour. I am really encouraged to hear some good feedback on my second layered cake, now I can start thinking (or dreaming) of my third ... forth ... etc?