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Archive for the ‘Cullinary Adventures’ Category

I Baked

Apple Pie  

   

I forgot to put egg glaze on top, hence it didn’t look shiny. Nonetheless, hubby loves the crust cause it’s good and buttery! 😉

Father said the filling tasted just like the apple pies grandpa baked, and would’ve been better if the crust is thinner.

   

Can you see the apple sauce?      

Served warm with a dollop of vanilla ice cream.

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Saturday was the year-end parent-teacher dialogue again in Boy’s kindy. It was the last time we collect the progress card a.k.a report card from this kindy as Boy is going to primary school next year.  I baked some orange muffins for his kindy teachers as a token of appreciation.

orange muffin 

It was really yummy! The muffins are light-bodied and not too sweet, just the way I like it. The walnuts added a nice nutty crunch to it. It would certainly taste even better to add more zest to the batter as the orange flavour was a little too subtle. That’s why I increased the zest to 2 tablespoons.

Here are the ingredients:
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup melted butter
2 tablespoons grated orange zest
2/3 cup orange juice
2 eggs
1/2 cup walnuts (optional)

Combine all dry ingredients. Then stir in melted butter, orange juice, eggs and chopped walnuts. Pour into 12 muffin cups and bake in preheated oven at 175’C for 20-25 minutes.
Optional toppings: coat strands of orange peel with sugar and put on top of muffins during the last 5 minutes of baking to let the sugar caramelize on the peel.

Recipe sourced from here but I increased the zest, omitted the original toppings and added my own 😉

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Meringue Cookie

If you noticed, the mille crepe recipe used three eggyolks for the pastry cream. So what shall I do with the eggwhites? Not wanting to let it go to waste, I use it to bake meringue cookies with this recipe.  

meringue baked meringue

Before going into the oven…                        Baked…

kiwi n meringue 

With Kiwi and whipped cream…

It tastes like cotton candy with a crunch, very sweet. Definitely can’t be eaten on its own, unless you have very very sweet tooth. It’s traditionally eaten with strawberries (I think), however I believe it should go well with any berries or fruits that has a sour flavour, because the sweetness of the meringue and cream provides balance to the taste. Dessert anyone? 

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Sometime ago someone Jason wrote about mille crepe. I could only imagine what it would taste like as there’s none selling here. Then last weekend I got adventurous, and decided to make mille crepe at home.

Searching for the recipe is easy. You can find it here. Again I halved the recipe to minimise wastage just in case it turned disastorous LOL! I’ve substitued certain ingredients and ommited a few. 

Ingredients:

For crepe batter: 

  • 3 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons sugar

In a small pan, cook the butter until brown like hazelnuts. Set aside. In another small pan, heat the milk until steaming; allow to cool for 10 minutes. Beat together the eggs, flour and sugar. Slowly add the hot milk and browned butter. Let batter to cool until room temperature. Place a nonstick or seasoned crepe pan over medium heat. Swab the surface with the oil, then spoon just enough batter and swirl to cover the surface. Cook until the bottom begins to brown, then cook on another side. Flip the crepe onto a tray or baking sheet. Continue until batter is finished.

For vanilla pastry cream:

  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/6 cup cornflour
  • 1 3/4 tablespoons butter

Prepare this a day ahead. Bring the milk to a boil, then set aside for 10 minutes. In a medium heavy-bottomed pan, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and cornstarch. Gradually whisk in the hot milk, then place pan over high heat and bring to a boil, whisking vigorously for 1 to 2 minutes. Add vanilla extract then remove from heat. Let cool for about 10 minutes. Stir in the butter. Press the pastry cream through a fine-meshed sieve into the small bowl. When completely cool, cover and refrigerate.

For assembly:

  • 1 cup whipping cream/heavy cream

Whip the heavy cream; becareful not to overbeat as it will separate into butter. If you use non-dairy whipping top, then don’t have to worry about overbeating. Fold it into the pastry cream. Lay one crepe on a cake plate. Using an icing spatula, completely cover with a thin layer of pastry cream. Cover with a crepe and repeat until use up all crepes. Chill for at least 2 hours.

Mmm… yummy! Everyone says it’s good. Still, there’s room for improvement; the crepes should have been made thinner. Anyhow I will still consider this a success, yeah!! 🙂  Here, have a piece too!

mille crepe

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Choux Pastry

Eheheh… this is one of my attempts to live up to my nickname 😛 Actually one of the reasons I started this blog is to document the recipes of food I like.I found this site when searching for simple cream puff recipe simply fell in love with this because the ingredients are simple and the steps easy to follow. Since the intent is making cream puffs, I didn’t include sugar in the choux pastry as required in the original recipe.

The ingredients I used are
– 60g of plain wheat flour (original recipe calls for strong plain flour)
– 50g of butter (my preference is salted)
– 150ml of water
– 2 large eggs, well beaten

Steps:
1. Sift the flour.
2. Put the water and butter in a saucepan over a moderate heat and stir with a wooden spoon. Turn off heat immediately as soon as the mixture comes up to the boil.
3. ‘Shoot’ the flour into the above mixture while beating the mixture vigorously with a wooden spatula/electric mixer. Beat until a small ball of paste that does not stick to the side is formed.
4. Add eggs a little at a time, mixing each addition in thoroughly before adding the next. Beat until you have smooth and glossy paste.
5. Lightly grease a baking sheet then hold it under cold running water. Tap it sharply to get rid of excess moisture.
6. Scoop the mixture with a spoon onto the baking sheet, leaving 2.5cm between them.
7. Bake in pre-heated oven (on high shelf) at 200’C for 10 minutes and 220’C for another 15-20 minutes.
8. Pierce the side of each one to let out the steam, then cool on a wire rack.

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Ever tried baking your own pizza? I mean doing it from scratch… kneading the dough, making the sauce base, deciding the preferred toppings etc… ? Now it’s time to make you drool, kkkz 😀

Presenting to you a home-made square pizza by my brother. Yummy! 🙂

Actually the photos were taken two weeks ago, but I had to wait for my brother to send them to me.

A close-up shot of the toppings…

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The plan to bake cheese cake is actually to use up the Tesco digestive biscuits I bought sometime ago. The biscuits are good on its own, except that the chocolate on top of the biscuit has sort of melted. It’s quite messy to store in room temperature, so I put it in the fridge. Turned out that now all the biscuits are stuck to each other, there’s no way to separate the biscuits without breaking them. Yeah I know… my mistake! *sigh* However, thanks to my mistake, now we have a cheese cake to eat! ;)The recipe is as follow:

For base:

1.5 cups digestive biscuit, crushed

125g butter

For filling:

250g cream cheese

75g sugar

2 eggs

1/2 cup sour cream

100g Toblerone chocolate

For the base, melt the butter and mix evenly with biscuit. Spoon the mixture into 23cm tin. Press on to the base and then chill.

Use electric beater to whip cream cheese and sugar till light and creamy. Add eggs gradually; beating well after each addition and then sour cream. Lastly fold in Toblerone chocolate.

Pour filling on to base and bake for 45 minutes at 160 degree Celcius.

As the intention was to use up all the biscuits, I didn’t bother to measure it precisely. As for butter, only about 70g was used; just nice to hold the crushed biscuits together. I asked hubby to help pressed the mixture to the base of the baking tin while I work on the cream cheese. Job well done or not?


The cream cheese was cut into smaller cubes so that it’s easier to work on. This part you have to give me credit for beating the cheese and sugar manually with a whisk ala-chef style! *bow, bow* Didn’t want to wake others as I was baking my cake 11:30pm, mind you! 😛 Now let the photos tell you the story…

1. Add sugar to cream cheease in a big bowl and beat with preferabbly an electric mixer. My arm ached the next day after all that action. *roll eyes*

2. All creamy and nice. See, my kung fu not bad eh?

3. Crack egg in to batter and mix evenly before adding next.

4. After folding in the sour cream, add chopped Toblerone chocolate to batter and fold it in.

Last but not least, pour the batter into the baking tin with pressed crumbs that was chilled earlier. This is how it looks before I shove it into the oven.

Tang Tang Tang Tang …

The tergendala paragraph was taken out… obviously because I can continue this post with the uploaded photos now.

Updated 8/11/2005 with more photos:

Rising nicely in the oven…

Out from the baking tin…

Side view…

I was quite happy with the taste on first mouthful, subsequently thought it’s a tad too sour (may be a little too much sour cream as I didn’t get the measurement accurately). Hubby commented about the sourness too but he ate most of the cake anyway hahahah… I brought half to my mama’s house for them to try. My brother said it was quite nice except that the base was too hard to cut. Guess hubby pressed too hard… I explicitly asked brother what he thought of the cream cheese part, was it too sour? But he said no wor… So, not a total failure but there’s room for improvement.

Want a piece?

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