Monday, 24 August 2015

Red Velvet Cake # 2

I'm not a big fan of Red Velvet Cake despite the raving reviews this cake gets. My sister for one, tires me endlessly about this cake and that prompted me to bake one myself, though I did not use her recipe. 

After meandering through online for a recipe, I found this recipe that was different from the rest and gave it a go.  It has coffee in it and that got me interested.  I love to add coffee in my chocolate cake and I figured this lady knows her cake.

Hmm... I must say after one bite I am converted. 
I now officially like Red Velvet Cake.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1 teaspoon of salt
2 Tablespoons unsweetened, cocoa powder
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil or canola
2 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1-2 oz. red food coloring, depends how deep you want the color
1 teaspoon of white distilled vinegar
½ cup of prepared plain hot coffee (don't skip this ingredient)

Preheat oven to 325.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, cocoa powder and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the sugar and vegetable oil.
Mix in the eggs, buttermilk, vanilla and red food coloring until combined.

Stir in the coffee and white vinegar.

Combine the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients a little at time, mixing after each addition, just until combined.
Generously grease and flour two round, 9 inch cake pans with shortening and flour.
Pour the batter evenly into each pan.

Bake in the middle rack for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Do not over bake as cake will continue to cook as it cools.

Remove the cakes from the pan and let them cool.
Cakes are really moist and you may need to refrigerate them to firm them up before stacking and frosting.

Frost the cake with cream cheese frosting when the cakes have cooled completely.


Note: To bake cupcakes, bake for 18-20 minutes, checking at the 18 minute mark.
Recipe from Divas Can Cook

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Butter cream flowers

Glad I got the change to pipe these cuppies last week. I've been dying to practice all the lovely buttercream flowers especially the Hydrangeas and the Magnolias.

Lovely pastel colors.  

I want to pipe some more.....

Friday, 21 August 2015

French Coconut Pie

I can never get tired of eating this scrumptious Coconut Pie. 

Please refer below for the sweet crust recipe.

For the filling:
125 g  melted butter
1½ cups sugar
3 whole eggs
1 cup sweetened coconut flakes
1 tsp white vinegar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven at 180°c.
Combine all of the filling ingredients and pour in unbaked pie shell.
Bake for 45 minutes until golden brown.
recipe from here

Monday, 17 August 2015

Cinnamon rolls - Tangzhong method

With years of baking experience somehow one would have guessed I'm good at reading recipes.  
I had this Cinnamon rolls planed for breakfast and went ahead to prep, till I noticed a small size dough forming.  
I was telling myself this won't do., the boys would jump out of the chair and reread the amount of flour used. 

So dear readers, this recipe makes 10-12 scrumptious Cinnamon rolls.  I suggest you double the recipe if you face similar situation.

bread dough:
210g bread flour
56g cake flour
20g milk powder
42g caster sugar
1/2 tsp salt
6g instant yeast

30g egg, lightly beaten (about half an egg, reserve the leftover for egg wash)
85g water
84g tang zhong

22g unsalted butter

1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
30g sugar
25 g unsalted butter, melted

to make tang zhong 

Place 25g bread flour in a saucepan. Add 125ml water, mix till smooth, making sure there are no lumps of flour. Cook over medium to low heat, stirring constantly with a hand whisk to prevent it from burning.

Within 1 to 2 mins, the mixture will start to thicken, stop when you see traces in the mixture for every stir you make with the hand whisk.

Transfer the hot tang zhong into a bowl and cover it with a cling wrap, making sure the cling wrap sticks onto the surface of the mixture.
Leave to cool completely before using it.

to make dough:
Mix all the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl with a hook attachment.  Make a well in the centre and add in the egg, water and tang zhong.

Mix to form a rough dough.  The dough is quite wet and sticky.
Add in the butter. Continue to knead the dough until becomes smooth and elastic. This should take about another 20 mins.

Place dough in a lightly greased mixing bowl, cover with cling wrap and let proof  for about one hour, or until double in bulk.

Mix cinnamon powder and sugar together. Reserve about 1 teaspoon of the mixture.

Remove the dough from the bowl and give a few light kneading. Roll the dough into a rectangle, about 30cm by 25cm, 1/2 inch thick. Brush surface with melted butter.
Sprinkle the cinnamon/sugar mixture over the dough surface. 

From the longer end (30cm), roll up the dough to form a long log (ie 30cm in lengh). 
Pinch the edges to seal. 
Place the log seam side down, trim off the two ends. With a sharp knife, cut the roll into 10 equal pieces, about 3cm each.

Arrange the rolls cut-side up in a greased (or lined with parchment paper) 20cm square pan or any suitable baking tray. 
Leave some space in between the rolls to allow them to expand. 
Cover with damp cloth or cling wrap and leave doughs to proof for the second time for about 45mins, or until double in size.

Brush top with egg wash (mix leftover egg with 1 tbs water) and sprinkle the reserved cinnamon sugar mixture over the top. 
Bake in pre-heated oven at 180 deg C for 30 mins or until golden brown. 


recipe from happy home baking

Friday, 14 August 2015

Oil and Milk Pie Crust

I was pretty intrigued when I stumbled across this pie crust that  uses oil and milk, rather than very cold chunks of butter. The simplicity of making the crust got my nuggets working and 
I immediate thought of pot pies.

I'm glad I gave it a go. A fantastic flaky crust that would give any buttered crust a run for its taste.  I reckon this crust is well  suited with savory fillings. (note to self - test this crust with a sweet filling).

2 cups sifted all-purpose flour,
1 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup  Oil
1/4 cup cold whole milk

Add salt to the flour.

Pour  oil and cold milk into measuring cup, and pour all at once into flour. With a wooden spoon mix until the dough is combined, the dough will be very crumbly. 
Knead  by hand till the dough is soft and pliable. 
That's it folks...easy ha.
I chilled the dough overnight.

Do give it a go...jue
recipe from broke foodie

Monday, 10 August 2015

Lo Mai Gai


Lo Mai Kai is one dish my boys and I enjoy. 
Obliviously I should give this dish a go.
But then looking up  for a decent recipe is rather daunting since each have their own individual preferences and I have mine, mind you I have picky eaters to consider.

So I read up a couple of  recipes and added my touch to it with what's available in my pantry...except for the Chinese wine and Chinese sausages., which didn't alter the taste at all.  
Take note that this dish takes at least a day to prepare.


8 -10  small dried mushrooms, soaked and sliced
1  chicken fillet, chunky cube
500g glutinous rice, washed and soaked overnight.
3 garlic - chopped

Wash glutinous rice, then soak it overnight.

Marinate chicken for at least an hour.

Seasoning for chicken:

3 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp light soy sauce
2 tbsp rice wine
1 tbsp ginger juice
1 tsp sugar
2 tbsp sesame oil
a pinch of white pepper

Season glutinous rice and mix well. Steam for 30 mins.

Seasoning for Glutinous Rice

1 1/2 tsp light soy sauce
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp oil
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp dark soy sauce
1/2 tsp Chinese five spice powder
1 cup of water

Cook the marinated chicken

In a pan add 2 tbs of oil. Saute the garlic till golden brown and add the sliced mushroom.

Add the marinated chicken and cook for about 8 min. Add a tsp of corn starch mixed with 2 tablespoon of water. Remove form heat and set aside.

Prepare wok for steaming. Fill the pan/wok with boiling water.

Prepare 6 ceramic bowls. In each small bowl, place chicken and Chinese Sausage at the bottom of the bowl then top up with Steamed Glutinous rice. Cover each bowl with aluminium foil.

Cover the lid, and steam for 20 - 30 minutes depending on the thickness of the chicken pieces.

Keep an eye on the water level, don't let it  run dry.
Served hot with chili sauce, and garnished with spring onions.

STEP 6, enjoy.


Friday, 7 August 2015

Kueh Bahulu

Dunno how long this Kueh Bahulu has been floating around in my 'to bake list''. 
As much as I am glad baking this I do feel bumped that I didn't do this sooner.  
Truly a good ole taste that you want to keep stuffing into your mouth.  
Did some adjustment to the original recipe and I must say, this is perfect. 
It would be great if I had  two molds,  just to speed up the process.

3 large eggs - cold
130 g fine granulated sugar
70 g self raising  flour

35 g cake flour
1- 1  1/2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt

In your cake mixer add the eggs and sugar.  Beat on high speed for about 12 minutes until light and fluffy.  The mixture would be triple in volume.

Add in vanilla extract.  I added a wee bit more to get off the eggy smell

Sift together flours then fold into egg mixture with a rubber spatula or with the mixer in low speed until there's no trace of the flour.
Grease mold with cooking oil and put in the oven.
Preheat oven at 200ÂșC, together with the mold. 

Fill each hole with batter and bake for 10-12 minutes or until it is golden brown. 

I purposely filled the cavity of the mold differently to show how it puffs up. So fill up before it reached to the brim.


Repeat the process until you finish the batter. 
The cake should turn a nice golden brown and that's when it's done.
Grease mold with cooking oil each time you bake a fresh batch.


Most of the time it's gone before it gets the chance to cool down.  Just in case, cool completely before storing in the container. 
(The longer its kept the drier it becomes)


Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Strawberry Cheesecake - unbaked

Whenever I buy fresh berries for a particular dessert,  I never get around baking the intended dessert and that's where my son Tim comes in. 
Needless to mention what happened to the berries.

I solveed the problem by getting a bag of frozen strawberries and made this delicious strawberry cheesecake. 
The bag is still there, so now we know that Tim hates frozen strawberries. 

For the strawberry compote 
1 cup of frozen strawberry
zest of  one lemon
3 tbs lemon juice
5 tbs sugar

In a small pot add the above ingredients and simmer in a very low heat until the sugar has melted and began to bubble. This would take about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and cool it completely before using.

For the crust:
Melted butter 100g
Digestive Biscuits 250g
1 tbs brown sugar

Crush the  biscuits till it becomes a fine crust. Put it in a bowl and add the sugar. Mix well and add the butter. 
Press crumbs firmly into a 7in spring foam tin. Put pan in a zip log bag and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or more.

For the filling:
250g Cream cheese - soften
zest of 1 lemon
juice of  5 passion fruit- or more if you prefer it tart.
300g condense milk - or according to your level of  sweetness
1/4 cup hot water
1 tbs gelatin.

** You may add some strawberry compote and puree about 2 tbs. Then add to the cheese mixture.
  • Beat the cream cheese till its creamy.
  • Now add the milk and beat till thicken. Add the lemon zest.
  • Put the gelatin in hot boiling water. Stirring until the gelatin has dissolved.
  • Add juice to the gelatin mixture.  ** Mix well and pour into the mixture. Stir mixture and pour into the chilled base. Put pan in a zip log bag and refrigerate for about 8 hours or overnight. 

Remove the pie from the fridge and drizzle generous amount of the strawberry compote over the cake  before serving.



Saturday, 1 August 2015

Rendang Daging Minang / Beef Rendang

I'm not an expert in making this superb dish simply known as Rendang, but blimey it tasted good. Unlike the regular Rendang which seeps in oil, mine kinda looks dry, I figured I probably used less oil to saute the blended ingredients. 
Either way, this is good cos I really loathe eating oily food.
I got this recipe from my favorite blog, Masam Manis and I altered it slightly.

6 tbs of cooking oil
1 kg beef - cut into cubes

40 gm kerisik - roasted coconut
4 kaffir lime leaves
2 tumeric leaves

salt to taste
1 tsp sugar
2 cups of coconut cream
1 pc asam keping - or  1 tbs of tamarind paste)
4 tbs crushed palm sugar

Blend the ingredients below
6 shallots
3 pips of garlic
1 in fresh turmeric
1 in fresh ginger
2 sticks of serai
1/2 inc lengkuas
15  cili padi - I used abut 7 and added 3 red chili

Heat up the cooking oil in a wok. Add the blended ingredients.

Cook until the aroma rises and begin to  turn brown.  Add the coconut cream and let it simmer in a low heat for 10 min.
Pic on left is when I just poured the blended ingredients and left after simmering for about 15 min. See the difference.

Next add the fresh beef, add some water and simmer on a low heat until dry. 
Once dried, add the seasonings. Add a bit more water and simmer again on a low heat until dry and the oil separates. 

The simmering in total takes about an hour. This will make the beef tender and give it plenty of time to absorb the rich flavors of the other ingredients.

Finally add the sliced leaves and kerisik  (roasted coconut which can be purchased at the wet market, make sure it's fresh). 

Keep stirring and stirring, make sure the heat is on low. See the color has changed to a darker brown.

Done...well it sure took a long time but worth the time. Dig in.

Saturday, 25 July 2015

No Knead Whole Wheat Ciabatta

Another bread? 
Well, what can I say. Loving my bread time.
This time I thought I'd give my Ciabatta a twist by making it a Whole Wheat Ciabatta.
I notice the bread was slightly 'denser' (if that is a word) than the regular airy white flour bread, which I didn't mind at all. In fact I liked the chewiness  and was great dunking it in soup.

4 cups bread flour (I used 3 cups white and 1 cup wheat flour)
*Note: you can use All-purpose flour if you want
1/4 tsp yeast
2 cups water - a tablespoon more for the wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp salt

In a large metal bowl add the above ingredients and give it a good mix with a wooden spoon until the dough is well mixed. The dough would be very sticky hence the wooden spoon.
Cover the bowl with a ling wrap and let it proof for 18 hours.

This is how it looks like after 18 hours, fully risen and bubbly.
Punch it down with a wooden spoon (oil it first).
But before that, prepare the baking pan and add some corn meal. 

Gently drop the dough on the prepared pan and shape it flat and long. The dough is very sticky, so oil your hands.
Let it rise for 2 hours. 

Preheat the oven to 200 deg cel oven and bake for 35 to 45 min.

Cool down before slicing it.
recipe from

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Sofia the first cake

Whenever I get an order to sculpt a figurine, I get the shivers. 
I'm still keeping my hopes high that no one will ask for Frozen cake with Ann and the notorious  Elsa figurines...creating those two will surely work my nerves.
Anywho when I was asked to create Sofia the first figurine with the cake and the crown and the  pendant, I obliged knowing very well what's ahead.

As you can see, Sofia could do with a smile...
Then comes the crown...humidity didn't' spare me.

By the time I collected myself, the cake came out nicely.
Ah the joys of running a cake business.

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Cheesy pull apart bread

I really like the song Cool by Alesso featuring vocals from singer Roy English. 

It's got a good beat that you want to listen over and over just like this cheesy pull apart bread.  I think I chomped down half the loaf.

You need a good base loaf and I'm using my lovely Italian bread.  It's a fairly simple and quick bread to put together, just mix up the cheesy ingredients and throw it in the oven. And what you get is this amazing bread. 

4 oz shredded Mozzarella cheese (1 cup)
8 oz shredded sharp cheddar cheese (about 2 cups)
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped green onion (to taste)
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 Tbsp sour cream
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 stick unsalted butter (1/4 cup, 2 ounces), softened to the point of being slightly melted

1 loaf of  Italian bread - see below for the bread recipe

In a large bowl, mix together the cheeses and the green onion. 
Stir in the mayonnaise and sour cream. In a separate small bowl blend the butter and garlic until smooth. 
Add the butter mixture to the cheese mixture.

Cut the bread into grids and put a tablespoon of the cheesy mix in each grid.

Bake in 100 deg cel oven  until nicely browned, about 15 -20  minutes.  
My loaf looks slightly crisped so keep a look out. 

Serve bread warm and get ready to pull it apart and enjoy.



Saturday, 18 July 2015

Cinnamon Babka Bread

This is the first time I am trying out this babka style bread,  quite similar to cinnamon rolls. This bread uses a very rich dough, similar to brioche and that contributes to its super soft and fluffy texture.

I was fascinated with the beautiful babka swirl inside the bread and the intense cinnamon waves. Glad I made this pretty bread, it taste superb. 

My bread maker kaput on me,  I love the timing of its demise (I use it for kneading only, thank goodness) so I'm gonna hand knead this dough. 
This recipe is from Brown eyed baker and this is how she did it.

For the Filling:
1 cup light brown sugar - I lessen it to 3/4 cup
¼ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
⅛ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 egg white - I omitted this and used milk instead. 

For the Dough:
½ cup whole milk, heated to 110 degrees F
2 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup granulated sugar
1½ teaspoons instant or rapid-rise yeast
½ teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces and softened - about 113g

For the Egg Wash:
1 egg, lightly beaten

Make the Filling: 
Combine all of the filling ingredients in a medium bowl. Set aside 1 tablespoon of the filling.

Make the Dough: 
Grease a large bowl and set aside. In a 1-cup measuring cup, whisk together the milk, egg yolks and vanilla extract.

In a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, mix the flour, sugar, yeast and salt on low speed until combined, about 30 seconds. 
Slowly pour in the milk mixture and mix until the dough comes together, about 3 minutes. Increase the speed to medium-low and add the butter, one piece at a time, until they have all been incorporated, about 1 minute. 

Continue to mix until the dough is smooth and comes away from the sides of the bowl, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer the dough to the prepared bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise at room temperature until risen slightly, about 1 hour.

Place the bowl in the refrigerator until the dough is firm and has doubled in size, at least 1 hour.

Assemble the Babka: 
Line an 8½ by 4½-inch loaf pan with parchment paper, allowing the excess to hang over the edges.

Punch down the dough on a lightly floured work surface. 
Roll out the dough to a 20 by 14-inch rectangle. Spread all but the 1 tablespoon reserved filling over the dough, leaving a ½-inch border around the edges. 
Working from the short side, roll the dough into a cylinder and pinch along the seam to seal.

Position the cylinder seam side up and roll back and forth until stretched to 18 inches long. Spread the reserved filling over the top of the cylinder. Fold the cylinder on top of itself and pinch the ends to seal.

Gently twist the double cylinder twice to form a double figure eight. 
Place the shaped dough seam side down in the prepared pan, cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until it doubles in size, about 1 hour.

Bake the Babka: 
While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. (180 deg cel)
Lightly beat the whole egg and brush the top of the loaf. 
Bake until the loaf is deep golden brown, about 45 minutes. 

Allow the bread to cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then remove the loaf from the pan and cool completely, about 2 hours. 
The bread can be kept at room temperature, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap, for up to 3 days.

recipe brown eyed baker

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Top 10 Cookie Recipes

Cookies are my family's all time favorite nibble. 
Me, I love em but not a cookie person. 
One time I bought a ginormous book ( believe me its thicker than the Bible) on cookies and only baked ONE  cookie...
Nevertheless we got some fab cookies.. here are list of  my favorite cookies in random order...

Coconut Macaroon 

Oatmeal Chocolate chip cookie

Almond Biscotti - I think I'll put this as my favorite.

Semolina/Sujee Biscuit

Whole Wheat Walnut Raisins Biscotti

Peanut Butter Cookie


Double Chocolate chip cookie

Semolina Shortbread

Cut out sugar cookie


Meringue Kisses

Hope you like my list.  Link for the recipes are below.