[non-bake] – moving.

Gladly announcing that I’m moving to my own domain very very soon! I made a promise with myself that I would start looking at making these all more serious once I have regular visitors to my blog. And I really never thought that day would come so early (looking at the commitment I usually had with my previous blogs.). It’s not even been 2 months yet and I already have followers that actually follow my blog posts and practice the recipes in real life. That means a lot to me!

I hope it’s gonne be up properly within this week (oh btw any volunteer on a custom theme? :P). Meanwhile, let me go back to my virtual kitchen (read: Photoshop & WordPress) to cook up something awesome for my new ‘house’. Happy Wednesday, y’all!

[non-bake] – Savoury Pancake

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I’ve always dreamt of waking up to a full set of English breakfast on the table. Ambitious much? :P As if having pancake isn’t luxury enough, this is what I had for this morning: pancake with poached eggs, pork pastrami, sausage and hollandaise sauce.

le pastrami.

I have a thing with any kind of cured meat and I would kill just to get a piece of those grilled meats.

poached egg with hollandaise sauce

I admit that’s not my best shot of poached egg. I shall blame the photographer for being too hungry that he took the picture of the wrong poached egg… Hollandaise sauce? I do love hollandaise sauce!

et voila!

Looks messy alright… but this is what you get when you wake up too hungry and pancake and ham is all you can think of. Or you could pay like 10 bucks to get your perfect English breakfast prepared.

Jees, I need to stop thinking about the English breakfast…

Pavlova

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I’ve always been mesmerized by the beauty of Pavlova and I always thought it’s that easy to make. Proven wrong on my first trial. True it’s only meringue, but it’s not just a meringue! It’s meringue with a crispy skin and marshmallow-y filling. Now that is hard to achieve especially with my cheap brand 3 year old oven :D

But rien n’est impossible. Nothing is impossible.

I gotta say there’s no rocket science to achieve the perfect pavlova, it only takes trials and errors. I made it for a good friend’s birthday yesterday. I thought they’re only patronizing me when they said it’s nice, until I saw people started eating it straight from the table before it’s finished being cut. Aha!

Pavlova

  • 6 egg whites – properly separated
  • 1.5 cups sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  1. Preheat oven at 200˚C
  2. Before you start making your meringue, make sure that your mixing bowl is clean and dry without any grease or anything on it. This is crucial.
  3. Separate all the whites into the bowl and set aside the sugar.
  4. Beat the egg whites till it gets foamy – about 1 minute
  5. Slowly put in the sugar, you can do it tbsp by tbsp. And keep beating till it reaches stiff peak and turns out white and glossy.
  6. Shape it on your greased pan and pop it into the oven. Decrease the temperature to 150˚ C and bake it for about 1-1.5 hours (depending on your oven, really). For me, I would have to play with the temp 3 times throughout the process.
Passionfruit syrup
  • 100gr passion fruit flesh
  • 2 tbsp sugar (or up to ur taste)
  • 20gr water
  • drops of lemon
Combine all ingredients and bring to a boil. You need to stir occasionally and leave it to cool.
For topping, put some whipped cream and decorate with the traditional toppings, aka strawberry, kiwi and the passionfruit syrup. Decorate only before you start serving it.
Et voila!

Milo Cookies

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When speaking about Milo, what comes to mind first is always the vintage Milo tin that my granny used to hide from us when we’re young. I used to eat raw Milo using my bare hand straight from it. I always thought she wouldn’t know, now that i think about it again, that’s probably why she always hid it from me.

I also had another unforgettable encounter with Milo during my teenage years. My auntie taught me another precious way I so will not forget about eating Milo. Just take out a slice of bread, pour some cold condensed milk on it, and sprinkle Milo on top – as much as you want. And eat it. Oh my goodness! Biting into the soft and cold and crispy Milo goodness… ah… another fond memory :)

And probably this is my latest Milo encounter – Milo cookies! And I dare say it’s much more satisfying than Oreos. But that’s probably just me. This recipe is definitely a keeper, though for my next baking I will certainly add more butter.

So, do you have your own unforgettable Milo encounter? Do share!

Milo Cookies

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tspn vanilla essence
  • 1 egg
  • 1.5 cup plain flour
  • 200gr Milo
  1. Preheat oven at 180˚ Celcius
  2. Cream butter + sugar until fluffy. Pour in vanilla essence + egg.
  3. Whisk flour + Milo together.
  4. Fold in dry ingredient into the wet mixture.
  5. Shape into balls or anyway you like.
  6. Pop into the oven for about 20 minutes
  7. Et voila! Very easy to make!

Strawberry Danish Pastry

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A bestfriend of mine from Sydney is visiting for Christmas this year. I asked her what she’d want me to make for her when she comes, and she quickly mentioned danish pastry, except with pears. So there I had my inspiration of the week of what to make.

I gotta admit that probably danish pastry and puff pastry are my most favorite pastry types. A little bit tricky to make, but the result is totally worth it and it could keep for quite long time. Unlike cakes that will get wet after some time.

Danish Pastry

  • 2 tbsp yeast
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 cups flour
  • 3 sticks butter – softened
  1. The key to making danish pastry is everything has to be kept cold.
  2. Dissolve yeast with 1/3 cup lukewarm water and let sit for 10 mins.
  3. Mix sugar, yolks and milk together and pour into dissolved yeast mixture.
  4. In the mixing bowl, mix in flour till it forms a ball and let sit for about half an hour.
  5. Roll out the dough ball into thin sheet (about 12″ square) and spread the softened butter and fold in envelope style. Make sure that the ends seal well. And let it chill inside the fridge for an hour.
  6. Take out the dough from the fridge and roll out to rectangular size… about 8″ x 18″ and then fold it back into envelope style. Chill in the fridge for half an hour. Repeat this process twice.
  7. Roll it out to 8″ x 18″ again when you start to use. For shaping ideas, you can take a look at the video here
  8. When you’re done shaping, let sit for another half an hour before popping it into the oven for half an hour at 350˚ F.
Go easy on the filling. I prefer citrus fruit to sweet fruit. You could put in some cream cheese or just plain sugar as the fruit base… Whatever you like :)

[non-bake] – Singapore catchup 2011

Pardon for the lack of food porn. Due to some unforeseen situation, I had to fly to Singapore last Thursday. But call it a blessing in disguise, I got to meet up with almost all my dear friends whom I hadn’t seen in almost a year. :)

Singapore and I… it’s a love-hate relationship. I paid a visit to the restaurant I worked at on the first day i arrived. I missed my girls a lottttt. And for the first time I had all the pleasure in strolling down Orchard under the wet sky and enjoyed every bit of the moment to myself. When I still lived there, I felt that Orchard was nothing but just a crowd pleaser that i wanted to avoid, but after a year, I’ve seen it from a total different light. It’s actually a very beautiful place with all those vibrant lights and Christmas music they’ve started to play…

Singapore has definitely been a huge part of my life – where I’d grown up and made lots of fantastic friends. It’s great catching up with all those peeps over short meals. I literally had to rush here and there and arranged all appointments in one day because i also had my own errands to do there. Sorry for other friends whom I hadn’t got time to contact, mostly is because I knew you’re coming, or you’ve just been here. :P

I’m definitely going back again some time… for holiday. :)

Chocolate mudcake (with raspberry sugar)

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So for my birthday this year, somebody brought me to Europe for 2 weeks. Turkey, Italy, Belgium and France. An eye-opener indeed of what life is like on the other side of the world and a chance to prove myself if Paris was like what I saw in movies. Is it really the most romantic place to be on earth? Hm… I don’t know. Maybe Brugges is much more a better place for romance. Is life in Europe is all that glamorous? Not really i suppose, but it’s truly a beautiful place. Waking up to rustic boulangerie just next to our apartment, walking hand in hand against the windy cold weather, cycling on the street amidst all the historical landmarks… ah… I’m one lucky girlfriend this year indeed. But in return I also brought home 10kg of baking chocolates from Belgium to bake him this cake. (sensed any lame excuse?)

And this gorgeous mudcake was made entirely out of those dark chocolates original from the chocolate heaven. For your indulgence …

Yes the chocolate ganache was thick. was about to say “too thick” but no chocolate coating is ever “too thick”, right?

Chocolate mudcake (with raspberry sugar)

  • 1 cup butter
  • 180gr dark chocolate
  • 150ml water
  • 220gr cake glour
  • 30gr cocoa powder
  • 480gr sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2tbsp oil
  • 100ml milk
  1. Preheat oven at 160˚ Celcius and grease ur pan.
  2. Sift together flour + cocoa powder. Mix in the sugar.
  3. Melt butter, chocolate, and water in a pan.
  4. Whisk egg, oil and milk.
  5. Put the butter mixture into the egg mixture. And slowly whisk.
  6. Fold in the dry ingredient into the wet ingredient.
  7. Bake for 1.5 hours or until toothpick comes out clean.
Chocolate ganache
Chocolate: 500gr
Heavy Cream: 400gr
Bring the cream until it just starts to boil, and slowly pour it into your chocolate and whisk until they come together. Wait for about 2 hours before you start coating your cake. Cover the ganache with cling wrap if there’s some leftover. Indulge it with anything… bread… chips…. anything!
Lastly sprinkle some raspberry sugar before serving.
And a piece of memorabilia from yours truly and the boy man that made this journey come true. Probably the only picture we took together using DSLR.

That little fluffy thing called… Marshmallow.

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Do you know that being able to make a good marshmallow is a pride for a .. ehm… pastry chef? Actually I hate calling myself a pastry chef because I’m not one and still very far from being one. But since I’m the only one operating my kitchen, I *have to* be one (yucks).

Okay move on.

Marshmallow. Me gusta! Bring me to any buffet restaurant, the moment i see a chocolate fountain, I know I will have to monopolize that station forever and ever with sticks of marshmallows prepared on my table even before I start picking my hors d’oeuvres. Hm, yeah. *sheepish*

Right one year ago at the restaurant I worked at in Singapore, we’re suddenly told to make marshmallow from scratch. With 100% natural ingredients. Excited much? That means no corn syrup too! Only at that moment I knew that we could actually make marshmallow. And it isn’t hard at all really. You only need to have a proper candy thermometer with you.

The recipe that I’m giving below of course has the corn syrup in it. Don’t be stupid. Why would you waste your time longer to indulge in your homemade marshmallow when you could just easily grab a very cheap bottle of corn syrup off the shelves? Besides, nobody cares. It’s not as if you bought a ready made Betty Crocker packed flours.

Raspberry Marshmallow (good for 9″ x 11″ x 1″ pan – about 32 pieces)

- adapted from joythebaker’s recipe

  • 1 cup icy cold water (divided into 1/2 + 1/2)
  • 90gr gelatin
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 cup corn syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp raspberry extract
  • 1/2 cup corn flour
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  1. First of all, mix corn flour + powdered sugar inside one container. This is the key to avoid sticky wet marshmallow and also the key that makes marshmallow as what you see in supermarkets.
  2. Grease your pan + coat with corn flour mixture all around.
  3. Mix 1/2 cup of cold water + gelatin in your mixing bowl and let rest for 5-10 mins.
  4. Bring sugar, honey, corn syrup to a boil until 240˚ F
  5. Slowly stream in the sugar mixture into gelatin mixture and start your mixer at low speed.
  6. After all of the sugar mixture has gone into the bowl, speed up your mixer and pour in the vanilla + raspberry extracts.
  7. Keep beating until it forms fluffy thick batter that’s almost similar to the texture of marshmallow.
  8. Pour into the pan and if you’d like to create some ‘painting’ on it like mine, drop some food coloring and using toothpick start painting.
  9. Let rest for min. 24 hours. Before you start shaping/cutting them, top it with the cornstarch mixture again and then start cutting.
  10. And… enjoy!

Mocha Cupcake

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My whole family loves mocha flavour. When I still lived in Indonesia, I remember that every year for everyone’s birthday we always ordered a huge mocha birthday cake from this well-known shop called Tip Top, a classic Dutch-influenced restaurant that’s apparently very well taken care of. My mom also just sent me a picture of my dad’s birthday cake yesterday, and guess what? It’s the same birthday cake we used to have together! And then pictures of my memory lane started to play in my brain. :(

This is my old classic recipe that’s apparently a rocker. I am so happy because after my blog was officially announced amongst close friends, I received 4 orders for this flavour cupcake alone last week. It’s beyond my expectation! :) So I guess it’s just about time for me to post about this on my blog as well.

Mocha Cupcake with Mocha Buttercream Frosting (yield 6 cupcakes)

Cupcake:

  • 2/3 cup plain flour
  • 30gr cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup coffee milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 50gr butter
  • 1/2cup sugar
  • 1 small egg
  1. Preheat oven at 350˚ F
  2. Mix all the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa, baing soda)
  3. Beat the butter with sugar until fluffy and slowly pour in the milk
  4. Mix the coffee milk with vanilla extract
  5. Fold the dry mixture into the butter mixture alternatively with the coffee milk mixture. Start and end with the dry mixture.
  6. Pour in the cupcake mold and pop them into the oven for 12-15 minutes.
Mocha Buttercream Frosting:
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp coffee powder
1. Mix the coffee powder into the vanilla extract until they dissolve
2. Whip butter for about 5 minutes
3. Slowly add sugar into butter and whip until well incorporated
4. Add vanilla mixture and continue whipping until it reaches the correct consistency: not too thick, not too runny. Remember your most favourite frosting consistency?
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