Thursday, 31 March 2011

Strawberry Chocolate Tart


Since I was in the baking mood and had quite a bit of time, I decided that one fine afternoon to make chocolate strawberry tart. I really love giving gifts. But, let me rephrase that, I really love giving heartfelt gifts. Giving a gift that's barely thought out or mindlessly chosen is not the kind of thing I'd want to impose on someone, nor would I ever want to receive it. Yes, sometimes, a hand crafted or handpicked gift is not as useful, as say, a gift card but I think it really is the thought that counts. I mean it's a popular phrase for good reason.




That's why one of my most favoritist gifts to give are baked creations. They involve time, work and love - and bonus, they make people happy! It just works out perfectly for me because I love to bake and I love to try out new recipes.

For crust:


plain flour 100g
cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes 85
pinch of salt 
1-2 tsp cold water


1. In a food processor put in flour,  salt and sugar and pulse a few times to get things mixed together.2. Add chilled and cubed butter and turn on until the dough looks like small pebbles.  Then add the egg and turn on until dough begins to form.
3. Wrap the dough up with and put in the refrigerator for 30 mins.
4. After chilling.  Roll dough on lightly floured surface to the size of your tart  pan. Gently lay the crust into the tart pan and form to the pan.  Put pan in the freezer for 15 mins.
5. Bake crust at 180 degrees for 15 with pie weights (could us beans or rice) inside the crust then take out the weights and bake for about 15 mins.  Cool crust completely on cooling rack.

For the filling:
Dark Chocolate 145g
Whipping cream 125ml
Unsalted butter 35g
Sugar 2 tbsp


Bring cream and butter to a boil until the butter melt, then put chocolate and sugar in. Gently stir until smooth.
Pour filling into cooled crust. Cool completely on rack.




For topping:

1 Strawberry each tart
Glazing gel
1 piece of chocolate decoration each tart

1. Cut strawberries into any shape you want
2. Apply glazing gel on the strawberries (it is just to make the strawberries look shinny, you don't have to put that on or you could use jelly powder+hot water, it will be the same)
3. Put a piece of chocolate on
4. ENJOY!

om nom nom

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Belgian Waffle 比利時窩夫


Waffles have been the comfort food for many people, I like mine with banana, strawberry and cream:D I don't have a proper waffle maker so it looks more like a pancake.

Ingredients:

160g of plain flour
45cc warm milk
5g yeast
1 egg
a pinch of salt
20g of sugar
10g of honey
35g of softened butter
50g of pearl sugar


The yeast makes the Belgian waffles soft, fluffy, and chewy. You could also use cake flour or baking powder but you will get the best result with yeast. 



Method:

1. Dissolve the yeast into the warm milk about 85 degrees Fahrenheit is best for fresh yeast activation
2. Mix all the ingredients except the butter and the pearl sugar.
3. Let it rest for 30 minutes. Incorporate the softened butter to the dough, mix well,
4. Add the pearl sugar.
5. Divide the dough in to 12 balls and shape into a oval. Let it rest for another 15 minutes.
6. Heat the waffle maker. cook for about 3 minutes.
7. It is not necessary to grease the waffle maker.Enjoy!

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Oriental Cold Spaghetti凉拌意大利面


China gets very hot and humid in the summer. To combat the heat, a number of dishes meant to be eaten cold have been developed. One of the main cold summer dishes is cold noodles. I tried it with Spaghetti, this is like a fusion dish.


Ingredients:
A. Spaghetti
B. Cucumber, White sesame, Coriander
C. soysauce, chilli oil, sesame oil, salt





Method:

1.Fill a large pot, preferably a dutch oven, with water and bring to boil. Cook spaghetti according to package directions until al dente. Meanwhile, finely chop ingredients B
2. Drain, rinse noodles with cold water, and set aside.
3. Pour noodle into a large bowl, mix with ingredients C
4. Serve cold


om nom nom

Monday, 28 March 2011

Simply Hot Chocolate Recipe 熱朱古力奶

Hot chocolate barely needs a recipe. It’s just a combination of hot milk, chocolate and/or sugar. But the ratios and variations are endless. Just be sure to use the highest quality chocolate powder if you can, and don't combine it with water, chocolate powder + water is just nasty!




Ingredients:

cocoa powder 1 tbsp
280ml whole milk
some sugar (depends on how sweet you want)
few pieces of marshmallows


Method:

1. Heat milk in a pot over low heat until hot but not boil
2. Add the cocoa powder and sugar into a mug, pour some hot milk in to the mug. Stir well until dissolved. Add in some marshmallows.
3. When the milk is steaming hot, take away from heat. Pour into a jug carefully. Use a milk frother to foam up the milk.
4. Pour milk into the mug. Stick marshmallows on a skewer, stir and enjoy!



Tips:

- lean the jug over at an angle, that makes more air goes into the milk, the milk will foam up quicker
- Some cocoa powder may contain a small amount of sugar

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Make Chocolate Fondue At Home! 朱古力火鍋



There's no need to leave your house to satisfy your fondue, It’s easy to do at home, no skill needed! and it will totally impress your friends. I had this today with a few friends at mine. You can use anything to dip in the chocolate, Poundcake cubes, strawberries, marshmallows, pretzels, banana slices, granola bar chunks, gummie bears, and on and on and on. And don’t limit yourself to just one type of chocolate. Mix it! 




What you need:
fondue pot


for chocolate fondue
dark chocolate or any kind of chocolate you want ( I used Green & Black 70% cocoa dark chocolate)
Whipping cream


You could also put  Bailey's Irish Cream to the chocolate or any other liquors such as Grand Mariner, Amaretto, or Kirsch are equally yummy.


for dipping
ANYTHING!


Put chocolate and whipping cream into the melting pot, once it melted, you can start dipping! If you don'thave a electronic melting pot like mine,  melt the chocolate chips very slowly over very low heat in a saucepan. Once it is melted and smooth, add the whipping cream.  Mix until heated and incorporated.  Transfer to a fondue pot.

Saturday, 26 March 2011

Japanese Cheese Cake 日式芝士蛋糕

I could never eat more than a few bites of a cheesecake because it was so rich. Japanese cheesecake, on the other hand, is the opposite. It is super light and pillowy soft. The texture is like a souffle and the cream cheese in the cake makes it melt in your mouth. 


Preparation:

1.Wrap the bottom of an 8" caje ring with wax paper
2. Siften cream cheese at room temperature
3. Sift corn flour
4. Preheat oven to 170C =


Ingredients:

Cream cheese 300g
Milk 150ml (I used whipping cream instead cause my flatmate bin my milk by accident lol) 
Sugar 60g
Icing sugar 60g
Corn flour 30g
Egg yolks 3
Egg whites 3

Method:
1. Put cream cheese and sugar in a mixing bowl
2. Beat with electric mixer until fluffy, Beat in egg yolks until smooth
3. Gradually add milk in, beat until smooth
4. In another grease-free mixing bowl, whisk egg whites and icing sugar until stiff 
5. Fold egg whites into cheese mixture gently
6. Stir in sifted corn flour. Pour the batter into the cake ring
7. Bake in hot water bath at 170C for 30 minutes. Remove the water basin and bake for another 30 minutes.

Friday, 25 March 2011

Grilled Bacon Wrapped Asparagus Skewers


Bacon and asparagus are a happy blend of flavors. Add the skewers and you have the perfect party food or starter.

Ingredients:
asparagus, trimmed
bacon, cuy in half to make two pieces per strip of bacon
olive oil
salt and pepper
skewers, soaked in water for 20 minutes
baking sheet/foil

  • You have to decide how many of these you want to do. I put 4 bacon wrapped asparagus spears on one skewer. You may be able to get 5-6 skewers out of a bunch of asparagus and a pound of bacon should be able to take care of that. Here’s what you need to do.
  • 1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees.2. Rub all the asparagus with olive oil and salt and pepper it.
    3. Wrap each asparagus spear with a half piece of bacon.
    4. Poke a skewer through about 4-6 asparagus spears (depending on size).
    5. Place on baking sheet/foil
    6. bake for about 15-20 minutes or until bacon is crispy.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Nutella Cupcakes


I love Nutella and I’m pretty certain you could smear the stuff on a piece of cardboard and I’d be completely content!


Chocolate Cupcake Recipe
Ingredients:
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 cup oil (I use canola)
2 cups hot water
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla

Method
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix everything in a bowl until you get a thin batter. I then poured the batter into muffin tins with cupcake liners. Bake them at 350 degrees until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. My cupcakes baked for about 19 -20 minutes. Yields 20 cupcakes.
Nutella Buttercream frosting
Ingredients
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 13-ounce jar of Nutella
pinch of fine grain sea salt
1 tablespoon clear vanilla extract
2 pounds confectioners’ sugar, sifted
6-8 tablespoons heavy cream or milk
Method
1. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and Nutella until well combined. Slowly add in confectioner’s sugar, and continue creaming until well blended.
2. Add salt, vanilla, and 3 tablespoons of heavy cream or milk. Blend on low speed until moistened. Add an additional 3-5 tablespoons of heavy cream or milk until you reach the desired consistency. Beat at high speed until frosting is smooth and fluffy.

How I made my chocolate decoration: 



put some almond on the bubble wrap


pour melted chocolate on top, chill in the fridge, break it into piece and put it on top of the cupcake

:P

Choclate, greentea and strawberry French macaroons recipe 法式馬卡龍




I just love macaroons and this French macaroons recipe is very easy to do.
You can make these macaroons in different flavors such as raspberry, chestnut, vanilla, pistachio etc but I've chosen to make chocolate, green tea and strawberry flavors.


Preparation
if you are first time of making macaroons, make some mark on the baking sheet first. I used 2p as measurement, it makes a mini macaroons.

Ingredients: (makes 20 macaroons)
A. egg white 46g, caster sugar 46g, few drops of lemon juice
B. Ground almond 50g, icing sugar 76g
C. cocoa powder/greentea powder 1tbs or few drops of food colouring


1. whisk egg whites and caster sugar until stiff

2. Using a spatula, cut and fold half of the almond and icing sugar mixture into the meringue. Add the remaining half, and mix gently. The macaroon mixture should be shiny and have a thick

3. add any flavor you want

 4. Line a couple of baking trays with baking paper and pipe small blobs

5. Important step: Now leave the macaroons for at least 20 minutes to 'set'
6. put it in a preheated 180C oven, turn down the temperature to 150C bake until the bubble appear around the edges.
7. turn it down to 120C then bake for 5 mins, turn it down again to 110C and bake for 5 mins.

8. cool on wire racks. Store loosely covered at room temperature. 






Friday, 18 March 2011

Oreo Cupcakes


Am addicted to oreo recently! Another thing that make with oreo!:)

recipe from suzie's note


Ingredients:
100g plain flour
20g cocoa powder
100g caster sugar
1.5 tsp baking powder
a pinch of salt
40g unsalted butter, room temperature
120ml whole milk
1 egg
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
6 oreo, with cream, chopped

Decoration: 1 quantity cream cheese frosting with added oreo crumbs (2-3 oreos without cream, blist into crumbs), orignal size oreo or mini oreo (depends on your case size).

Method:

Mix all dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl, add in the butter. And continue mixing until they all become sand. The add the egg into the mixture and mix well. You may find this lumpy but don’t worry. Add vanilla extract into milk. Gradually, pour in 1/4 of the milk into the mixture, mix well slowly. And add in the remaining milk by two to 3 times. Continue mixing for a minute or two until the mixture is smooth. Be careful not to overmix and stretch the flour. Add the chopped oreo in and mix it lightly using spatula. Or you can fill cases half batter, add the chopped oreo and put more batter to cover it. Bake for 15 - 25 mins depends on the size case you use.

Cream cheese frosting making
300g icing sugar, 50g unsalted butter [room temp], 125g cream cheese [cold]
- Cream the butter and icing sugar together, until  you get like white sand looking.
- Add the cold cheese at once and whisk well. As all ingredient has incorporated, you will find the whole thing really stiff. Continue to whisk until you get a fluffy texture (about 5 minutes)
- Spoon into a glassware
, wrap with clingfilm and leave it in the fridge till you are ready to decorate.

chop chop chop

cupcakes in process:)

mini one:)

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Burger Day! Homemade beef burger and veggie burger


I suppose you can have burgers anytime of year (and I do) but I know I cannot be alone in thinking they taste best with a generous dose of sunshine and a light, warm breeze.

Thursday, 10 March 2011

Something oreo, oreo tiramisu pie and oreo tiramisu

buy one get one free oreo free tesco and I was craving something fresh, and cold yesterday, so I decided to whip up an oreo pie. .

Ingredients:
for the crust:
Oreo 12 pieces and 1 piece for decorate
unsalted butter
for filling:
Mascarpone 250g
egg yolk x 2
sugar 40g
Whipping Cream 50ml
black coffee 10ml




1.Grab some oreos to begin, separate the chocolate biscuit and filling. Crush the biscuit (or throw them into the food processor), add some melted butter to the crushed biscuit. Then process them until totally combined.

2.Pour it into a pie pan…

3. And press them into the bottom of the pan and up the sides. Set the pie pan aside  



For the filling:
1. Put everything in to a large bowl, whisk with electric whisk until smooth and thick.
2. Pour the filling into the crust.
3. Sprinkle on some extra cookie crumbs. Makes the pie look purty.
4. Freeze it for 3 hours.

I used the same filling for tiramisu, just simply put lady finger cake in.

The pie is nice and rich, so smaller slices are usually plenty. And if you want to go a little fancier, throw some chocolate curls (or just shaved chocolate) on top. The texture is lovely: smooth and firm and light.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Pancake day!



What is pancake day?


Traditionally Shrove Tuesday is the last day to eat all the fat, eggs and dairy products in your kitchen before the start of Lent - a time of abstinence and reflection in the 40 weekdays before Easter. You are supposed to give up chocolates, smoking, meat for Lent.



I love pancake and it's pancake day today, it is a really good excuse for me to have lots of yummy pancakes since I was gonna go on diet!


Here I used a really simple recipe

Ingredients

2 cups flour
⅓ cup sugar
1egg
2 cups milk*
2 Tablespoons butter (melted)


*Depends on what texture of the pancake you want, you could increase the amout of milk.


Method
Mix all flour and sugar together then add egg, milk and butter. Whisk until all Incorporated.Heat your frying pan to medium and pour the batter on a lightly greased pan, flip when bubbles 
appear on the edges. Once flipped it only three or four minutes to finish cooking.then serve with anything you want!


Sunday, 6 March 2011

Butter cookies and Ferrero Rocher cookies

Got so many ferrero rochers from friend, so i thought maybe i could make something with them:P

Ingredients
Unsalted butter 35g
Salted butter 35g*
Icing sugar 60g
Egg yolk x1
Plain flour 150g
Vanilla extract few drops
Milk powder 2tea spoon
Ferrero Rocher x4
*I used 70g unsalted butter instead

Method
1. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and icing sugar until light and fluffy
2. Beat egg yolk to the butter and stir in the vanilla extract
3. Combine the flour and milk powder*
4. Chill dough in fridge for 15-30 mins
5. Preheat oven to 180C
6. Reduce the heat to 160C and bake for 10-15 mins
*for ferrero rocher favour, crush the ferrero rocher then add to the dough and mix well








could also make chocolate dipped cookies with melted chocolate