Note:

I know you may think me contradictive for posting recipes when I clearly don't follow them. That's true, but I ADAPT them and change the quantities of ingredients to suit my need/taste/feeling. So please feel free to ADAPT the recipes I post... now run free and enjoy the blog.

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Hello and soft breads

Greetings! This is slightly awkward, I guess, since I have not updated this blog in a while. Ok, maybe a little more than a while. (Sorry) Hehe...anyways, in a baking mind, the season of summer= making bread.

And that's what I've been doing!
The searing summer heat has been a natural furnace for proving the dough.

And though some may feel that kneading is a tedious job, it's a wonderful feeling of punching down proved dough and moulding and shaping it into beautiful loaves, plaits and buns.

For the breads below, I followed the recipe which you can find here in Christine's blog of Asian and Western recipes.

This specific recipe uses 'tangzhong,' a flour paste that makes bread super super soft much like the buns one can purchase at Breadtop.

Today's batch turned out surprisingly well! (Very happy at the mo.) It was the softest bread I have ever made, but I'll try to improve it still (it was en peu dense.)

If/when I do, I promise to update le blog! :D

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Salted Caramels AKA Butterscotch

Hullo everybody!

I have been wanting to try this recipe for a long time and finally I have found the time.

Izy from topwithcinnamon.com is such an inspirational blogger as she is only 17 and has one of the best female cooking blogs in the world. (I'm not making this up, seriously, she has won awards!)

Follow the link and be amazed.

This is quite a simple recipe; you just have to be organised and on your toes- ready for everything. (Improv is you're best friend)

I'll hopefully be posting another recipe tomorrow that includes these little caramels so you can premake them for ease of preparation.

Everything you need to know is in the cooking notes so... here you go!


Butterscotch

(Adapted from: topwithcinnamon.com: How to make Salted Caramel)

Cooking Notes:

Initially I thought this recipe would make soft setting caramels like a nice melt-in-your-mouth type fudge but…no. That’s ok though, instead they make hard setting caramels much like the buttery Weather’s Original.

One of the things I love about this recipe is that it doesn’t use glucose syrup (which is something I am a little afraid to use…) So kudos to Izy.

You have to work fast and be prepared because caramel is one of those fiddley little things that is easy to muck up. But fear not, I didn’t exactly follow the recipe to the word (uh, duh, my URL) so I improvised by adding more vanilla extract.

Read the recipe ahead and prepare all ingredients and moulds.

Ingredients  

·         132g caster sugar

·         6 tablespoons water

·         16g unsalted butter

·         4 tablespoon thickened cream

·         1 tsp vanilla extract

·         1 ½ tablespoons honey

·         1/4 tsp salt

Mini muffin moulds lined with squares of baking paper


Measure out all ingredients in individual bowls or cups. Trust me on this, it may be tedious but it helps when you’re on the verge of burning caramel.

Place the sugar and water into a medium saucepan and stir together over a medium to high heat, until the sugar dissolves.  

Start swirling
 

Swirl the pan while the mixture boils (NO STIRING!!!)

Keep swirling until it caramelizes.  (Yellow gold color) Take the pan off the heat.
 

Add in the butter and swirl it in.
 

Then the cream, honey, vanilla extract and salt. Stir it in.

If it does not look like this consistency, put it back on the heat and add a little more vanilla extract. (This should make the mixture a caramely colour.)
 

Quickly and carefully pour into prepared moulds as they are hothothot and set fast.

Cool until they are cool to touch then suck away! (PLEEEEASE DON’T BITE BECAUSE YOU WILL PROBABLY BREAK YOUR TEETH)
Done
 
 

 

 


Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Wonders of the Microwave


Howdy everybody!

I’ve been on YouTube quite a bit of late and have (re)discovered a favourite cooking channel, SORTED Food.

They make all sorts of things from burgers to bubble tea and this particular recipe has got to be one of their best.

How can anything beat chocolate cake? How about Chocolate Cake in a Mug?

That’s right.

Behold, with the mighty powers of the microwave, I present to you this less-then-10-minute-to-execute-delicious recipe:


Chocolate Cake in a MUG!

(Adapted from sortedfood.com: Chocolate Cake in a Mug)

Cooking Notes:

The coffee powder added in the mixture is added more to enhance the chocolate flavour rather than act as another bold flavour. (If not a fan of coffee, this can be omitted.) But I highly recommend adding more for that toasty mocha taste.

You could always have different flavours other than chocolate by adding essences/extracts or dried fruit to the mixture, omitting the cocoa powder e.g. mint, almond, orange,  cranberry, raisins, vanilla, hard-core coffee and pandan. (Pandan will be my next experimental flavourJ)

Adding choc chips will make the cake moister and less rubbery. I don’t mind the spongy and slightly rubbery texture (perhaps because I was hungry at the time,) but adding a little more milk will make the cake softer in texture. (I tried this. Originally the recipe said 1 tablespoon but I say 2-3.)

Also, really important, you have to eat it STRAIGHTAWAY. If left for too long it will get extra rubbery and dry and that does not go down the throat.

Cake

·         2 tablespoons self-raising flour

·         2 tablespoons caster sugar

·         1 tablespoon cocoa

·         1 tsp instant coffee powder

·         1 small egg

·         2 tablespoon milk

·         1 tablespoon sunflower oil (or any other vegetable oil)

·         As many chocolate chips/buttons as you wish. (The more you put, the more moist your cake will be!)

Method:

1.       Spoon all the dry ingredients in a large mug and mix well.
Flour mountain



Cocoa mountain


Coffee mountain


2.       Crack in the egg and whisk with a fork to combine.
 

3.       Add the milk and oil and stir to combine.


4.       Drop in the chocolate bits. (I made the mistake of stirring it in the first time. DON’T do this as stirring they will end up at the bottom, burnt. They will sink naturally in the process of cooking.)
 

5.       Place mug in the microwave and cook for 2 ½ minutes on high power.
Looks like a soufflé!
 

6.       Be careful when taking the mug out as it will be hot!

7.       Eat as is/ with ice cream/ cream/ icing sugar/ a friend/ or by yourself (YES!)
I did not purposely drip batter on the side to make it look like Donna Hay. It's natural.
 



Saturday, 4 January 2014

"Honey, Cookies!!!"

Well hellohellohello!!!

I know it's been three months and I'm sorry for leaving you all lonely.

I need to wish you  A BIG belated Merry Christmas and an even BIGGER Happy New Year.
May 2014 be a year of happiness, success and more Kitchen Krusades! (hopefully...)

Below is a recipe to start the year on a sweet note with a hint of cinnamon.

Enjoy!


Honey Cookies

(Adapted from bestrecipes.com, Honey Cookies.)

Cooking Notes:
These cookies have a crunch to them if baked at the time below but if softer cookies are preferred, bake for a shorter amount of time.

They are also quite sweet (honey, duh) so adding some toasted almonds would be a nice addition J

Ingredients:

·         175g unsalted butter, chopped

·         ¾ cup caster sugar

·         ¼ cup honey

·         ¼ tsp cinnamon  

·         1 lightly whisked egg

·         1 tsp vanilla extract

·          cups of self-raising flour
Yep, close up on that flour
 

Method:

1.       Place butter, sugar and honey in a saucepan and heat on a medium heat and stir until butter has melted and the mixture is smooth.
 
 
Liquid GOLD
 

2.       Remove from heat and pour into a bowl to cool to room temperature.

3.       Combine flour, egg and vanilla extract with the honey mixture.

Gotta mix it good

 

4.       Pre-heat oven to 175°C

5.       Roll mixture in balls and flatten (with three fingers, as shown) on tray lined with baking paper.
Hunger Games *whistles Mockingjay tune*

Peeta could sell these in his bakery
 

6.       Bake for 12 minutes or until golden brown.
 


7.       Cool and eat!
 

Monday, 30 September 2013

Cinnamon COOKIES

Hi everyone,

I found I had a lot of almond meal in my little baking shelf (due to the late macaroon madness in which I failed miserably) and decided to use it up.

So here, almond meal makes a perfect substitute for the majority of flour in this recipe.

It makes a soft and crumbly cookie instead of a crunchy one (for me anyway,) but either way is still delicious.

Enjoy :)


Cinnamon (almond) cookies

Notes:
This is a pretty straight forward recipe.
If you have almond essence this will boost the almond flavour but I did not and it turned out fine.

Cookies:

125g softened butter
2/3 cup caster sugar
Few drops of  vanilla extract
 
1 cup almond meal
½ cup SR Flour
½ cup Plain Flour
½ teaspoon bi-carb soda
 
Coating:
 
Equal portions of cinnamon and  sugar. e.g. 4 tsp: 4 tsp.  Make more if needed.
 
1. In bowl, cream butter and sugar well, add vanilla and almond essence then beat in egg.
 
2. Sift dry ingredients into bowl and mix together well
 
3. Roll into small balls (walnut size) and roll into cinnamon and sugar.
 
4.Gently flatten on tray and cook 180c for about 10 min until golden. Keep an eye on them after 10 mins.
 
They puff and spread so space them well.
 
 
I ate them with caramel macadamia ice cream and it was DELISH.
 

Friday, 30 August 2013

Chocolate Coffee Cake


Hello!!!
Yes I know it's been a while since I last posted but life gets rather busy... and when it does, sometimes you just need to sit down, make yourself a cup of tea and eat cake.
But what else do cakes come in handy for???
Birthday celebrations!
I made this cake for a friend's birthday and TBH, it turned out pretty flat and 'non-cake-looking' but on the positive side it did taste deliciously of coffee and chocolate. Mmmmm.
It may not be the most attractive cake but it really did taste smashing.


My Cake  VS.












My friends cake. HAHAHA you decide...  no jokes this is too embarrassing :)

 




















Chocolate Coffee Cake

(Adapted from bestrecipes.com: Best Chocolate Cake and Coffee Frosting)

Cooking Notes:

This recipe uses oil but I’m sure it would work fine if you substitute with melted butter.

The coffee taste in the actual cake is not that prominent; the frosting really brings out the coffee flavour.

Notice I did not add in the procedure to sift the flour and baking powder together. You know why… J If you would like to, then by all means go ahead.

Cake

·         Just under 1 cup of caster sugar

·         1 ¾ cups of self-raising flour

·         ¾ cup cocoa powder

·         2 eggs

·         2 tsp baking powder

·         ½ tsp salt

·         1/3 oil (I used corn)

·         1 cup milk

·         2 tsp vanilla extract

·         1 tsp instant coffee mixed with 1 cup boiling water

Frosting

·         ½ tsp instant coffee granules

·         ½ tsp warm water

·         2 tsp milk

·         60g softened butter

·         130g icing sugar

·         ½ tsp vanilla extract

 

1.       Beat all ingredients except the coffee water mixture.

2.       Gradually add coffee mixture while beating until smooth. IT WILL BE RUNNY.

3.       Pour batter into tin and bake for 180°C fan forced for 1 hour or until skewer inserted in middle comes out clean.

Runny Batter

4.       Cool it.

5.       While cooling the cake, start on the frosting.

6.       Dissolve coffee granules in warm water and then add the milk.

7.       Combine butter, icing sugar, coffee mixture and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy.

8.       Spread on cooled cake. (You might have to wait a while after you finish making the icing before spreading on cake as it will probably still be hot.)


Donna Hay style for the win WHOOP!


A little bit thin :/
 
 
 

Saturday, 3 August 2013

Butter Cake


What I usually do when a recipe includes flour+baking powder and says: ‘sift them together’… I don’t.  Then my cakes or muffins turn out unevenly risen and liken themselves to a hill.

Soooooo, this time I sifted both together and guess what I got? An evenly risen cake! (That sunk because I took it out of the oven immediately because I was eager!)

 It’s an improvement nevertheless J

So here is the recipe and hopefully you have a better outcome than me!

Butter Cake
(Adapted from taste.com recipe: Butter cake)

Cooking Notes:
Make sure you whip the butter/sugar/vanilla until very airy and pale. This will give the cake some lift and a steamed sponge texture.
Perhaps use unsalted butter for this recipe. I used salted and it tastes salty. Too salty.

Ingredients:

·         250g softened butter (refer to cooking notes.)

·         ¾ caster sugar

·         2 tsp vanilla extract

·         3 eggs

·         2 ½ cups self-raising flour

·         2 pinches of baking powder

·         2/3 cup of milk

Very few ingredients.



Method:

1.       Pre-heat the oven to 180°C. Line tin with baking paper.

2.       Sift the flour with the baking powder. Set aside. (DO THIS!!!)

3.       Cream the butter, sugar and vanilla until pale and fluffy
 
Like an off-white colour. Very whipped.
 

4.       Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition

5.       Add half the flour, mix

6.       Add half the milk, mix

7.       Repeat with remaining flour and milk

8.       Pour into prepared tin and bake for 1 hour or until a nice golden brown colour and a skewer comes out clean.
 

9.       Cool in the pan then cool on a wire rack.
 
 
 
 
 
WIRE RACK!
 

10.   Eat plain/dusted with icing sugar/nutella/frosting/whatever toppings you want.