Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Not again!

This cannot be!! Have I again gone along too long and not post anything??!!
Again, I'll just make this a photo entry of all the things I've been up to!

Nutella Rice Krispies

Then, there was the classic chocolate lava cake: 
(sorry for the blurry shot..the clear ones looked um.. unappetizing)

I got in touch with the chinese in me and made
Coffee PORK RIBS~~

Then there was the Mushroom Pesto salad:
(again, its hard to make runny things look good)

Red Velvet Cake: An ambitious QUADRUPLE heart shaped cake that I baked for the Department as my parting gift to them. Teachers always rock!

I just had to take a silly shot of myself doing something silly with the cake!
(I was pretending to be a robot, in case no one got it...)

Then the inside: 

And my most recent adventure, Poppy seed cupcakes with vanilla custard:
Get the recipe here: http://www.poiresauchocolat.net

I made some changes to the recipe and used my own custard one. I think my next project is to include all my recipes onto this site. IF ONLY I HAVE THE TIME!! ARGH.

Next stop... Banana Cake with Gula Melaka Toffee...hmmm

Friday, July 9, 2010

Its been too LONG

Oh my goodness. Have I let half a year pass me by without posting anything??

Life sucks. So here's what I'll do. I'll make a little happy collage of what I've been up to and serve it as a PHOTO sum up of well... What I've been up to.

First up,


IN very random order:

Rebecca's Lemon Meringue Cake, based on my cupcakes!

First you split the cake,
Then you slap on the lemon curd .

Then like an obsessed monkey, you do it again!!

Then, unlike an obsessed monkey, you slap on the 7 minute MERINGUE frosting.

Finally, like a monkey armed with a blow torch, you SET FIRE TO THE CAKE! *cue evil mechanical laugh* If only all fires set by monkeys end up being this pretty or tasty.

Next, Naresh's Bailey's sour cream cake with rum and Bailey's fudge. TOPPED with 80% dark Lindt Chocolate and made with dark chocolate covuture.




All the chocolate and jam would explain why the Thomas and friends aged very quickly
The trains were made of butter cake.

Next, for a 22 yr old child, aka the GORILLA

The holes are from the candles. The mouth is made of Fondant and the eyes are chocolate buttons. The white spots on Domo's mouth are candle wax. No wonder DOMO is ARGHING.

How about saying Happy Birthday with Tripple Chocolate CUPCAKES?

Now that we are done with birthdays, lets move on to random baked goods.


Red velvet cupcakes... The photo doesn't do it justice but trust me, it was really red....



Little flower pots! With marshmallow petals and crushed oreos for dirt.


Just a plain old Oreo sitting on a bed of creamy white vanilla frosting

Then it as 
I tried to make them look like little grave yards.. With the crushed Oreos as dirt and the mini Oreo as a tombstone.


A light vanilla cake topped with crushed Oreos, vanilla frosting, chunks of Oreos and finally topped with a whole oreo at the bottom. HMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

One Triple Chocolate Cupcake decorated prettily and standing alone. At this point, I like to point out I make tonnes of unique and exciting flavours but EVERYONE loves the Triple Chocolate..

              And finally, the savouries. I know, I know, its normally the mains first then the sweets bt I am what I am. DON'T JUDGE ME.

And now, a meal I planned for the Gorilla!

Another English Roast but different.


Then Baby Roast Potatoes

A classic, TOAD IN A HOLE..


Its actually Yorkshire Pudding baked with sausages...I followed Jamie Oliver's twist and added a few sprigs of fresh rosemary. It was a semi fail as I underestimated how much batter I needed but it was really delicious...

Then came the Wine and Chocolate FONDUE

So its Sparkling wine, Brown Brothers Zibibo( very affordable and sooo delicious), dark chocolate, white chocolate, strawberries and cherries.. A sweet finish.

So there you have it. My most recent baking exploits. There were more birthday cakes here and there and.. hang on,  I forgot all about these babies...

Sour Cream Chocolate Chip cookies

A crispy on the outside but soft and cake like on the inside cookie. MMMMM

There.DONE. I think. ENJOY. :) 

Monday, January 11, 2010

Blowtorch fun

                I've been having this insane craving for lemon meringue cupcakes ever since I had some at Marmalade Pantry not too long ago. It was a good mix of sweet and tart, with an airy sponge in between. In fact, I believed it to be mostly sweet with a slight tartness. I couldn't be sure because I believe the minute the cake made contact with the mouth, the " delicious" button in my brain started a flashing and savouring was not a function that was available when I operate in this mode. It was more like a NOM NOM NOM.
            After much net trawling and cross referancing, I decided to follow Martha Stewart's Lemon Meringue Cupcake recipe. You can get it here: http://www.marthastewart.com/recipe/lemon-meringue-cupcakes

            I suggest watching the video because she does show you what it means to beat the butter and sugar till its "light and fluffy", something which always eludes me. I just pretend I know what it means and cross my fingers when the cake is baking.

        WARNING: The recipe doesn't dictate exactly what she is doing in the video. Like making the curd in the baine marie( doube boiling method) as opposed to just sticking everything in the saucepan. I was cautious, I used the double boiling method. I also did the cone method (digging out a little circle of cake and filling the hole with the curd then capping it back with the cut out circle) and filled each cupcake with half a tablespoon of curd as opposed to smearing one tablespoon. I halved the recipe and got 16 cupcakes. In any case the end result is delicious. Although it differs greatly from the ones served at Marmalde Pantry's,it still  leaves one feeling satiated.

           I reckon its a cultural thing as well, since us asians don't really have a lot of lemony tart desserts and so almost every asian person (save for myself) found the curd too tart and did the scrunched up face when they hit the curd. I guess it was then that it oc-curd(couldn't resist) to them that they should have eaten the cupcake as a whole and not in parts. The gorilla and good friend (both hailing from the uk) thought it was just the right amount of tart. I personally am a fan of lemon meringue pie and cookies so I loved the tartness. But you have been warned!  Now I present to you my labour of love:

And here's another shot:

Don't they look yummy? I was experimenting with ways to end the tip of the cupcake. I think short and straight looks best, don't you think?


Monday, January 4, 2010

Happy New Year!

       Welcome 2010! This year can only get better as I enter the new year all geared up with fun culinary presents such as a chef's torch (given by the gorilla), a cookbook by Delia Smith( given by gorilla's mom), a decorating book that covers basics of decorating with fondant( given by my sister) and an autographed photograph of NIGELLA LAWSON! AHHHHHH!! My gorilla rocks! 

        So what better way to ease oneself into the new year than by cooking a nice big lunch on the first weekend of the new year? It was my last Sunday off for many months to come ( I work weekends. Woe is me) so I thought it would be nice for me to make a nice big lunch for the gorilla and I.

         First up, for starters I made Sasuage and Cheese Bundles! This time, I took some process shots since I had some leftover filling and skin the following day and thought it would be fun to post them on my blog.

         The filling: Browned sausage meat mixed with green peppers, spring onions,cheese and a dash of black

The yellow liquid you see is the cheese that melted. I suggest waiting for the meat to be COMPLETELY COOLED to avoid this culinary disaster. I also suggest making this fresh on the day as this loses flavour very very quickly and did not taste as good as it did the day before. Sigh

Next, I wrapped them up in wonton skins.

Tip: Flour your pan and hands and sprinkle a little in between the dumplings. Usually this is not necessary but I did so because of melting cheese problem. Yes, I was well cheesed. Hur Hur.

Then, I fried them in very hot oil( read: you have to do the "float" test. Drop a tiny bit of wonton skin into the oil and if it floats up within 2 seconds, your oil is ready.)

Serve them hot with some salsa. The recipe says so but the gorilla and I both felt they tasted better on their own. Some sour cream might do the trick too!

 Now, lets move on to the main course shall we? For the main course, I simply whipped up my all time favourite, Mushroom Saffron Risotto.

Sorry, no process shots for this one. I was too busy trying to fry the dumplings while making this. The gorilla helped by helping me stir the risotto and adding more stock! And dissolving the saffron into the broth! Go gorilla!
       After the gorilla left for home to have dinner with his family, I got lonely in the night. No amount of Futurama, recipe book reading or cuddling with the cat could fill that void. I was falling apart. I decided it was time to call on an old lover.

   It was 11.15pm at night. I was desperate, restless and lonely. I knew I had to have it. My body craved it. Its smell, its taste, the tingles it sends through my body. CHOCOLATE.( HA! Shame on all of you who thought I was refering to something other than a chocolate fix. Tsk tsk) After much rummaging of the fridge kind, I managed to come up with this:

            A sinful crepe filled with dark chocolate then topped off with a chocolate liquer sauce and fresh strawberries

Not bad for a late night snack eh? It took less than 15 minutes and I was quite satisfied.

I confess. I did it the express way. I used an instant crepe. *Gasp* Oh please. Nigella has a whole show dedicated to "express" methods. As long as it gets the job done and the chocolate quota fulfilled, I'm not going to be padentic this time. Come on, its a Sunday and its not a bloody day of rest if I have to struggle more than 15minutes in the kitchen just to whip up something that will be gone in 10minutes or less.

Happy New Year! May 2010 bring many wonderful and delicious things to your life!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Cupcakes, cakes and Birthday cakes!

Yes, its been awhile since I shared my two cents with cyberspace and all those who love to bake/ eat. So much has happened, what with winding up things at work, trying to bake for money. I haven't been blogging because I actually have been baking for money. In the past two months, I have sold under my company serene bakes the following:

                     10x tripple chocolate cupcakes

                      7x nutella cupcakes

                     1x 9" tripple chocolate cake

                     1x 9"  Double chocolate whisky cake with bailey's fudge

                     1x 12" by 12" double chocolate whisky cake with bailey's fudge
                      1x 12" by 12" Gula melaka coffee cake with vanilla cream and sugar icing
1 7" by 9"  Double chocolate whisky cake with bailey's fudge

and soon, a 7" by 9" inch Orange sugee cake.

         Now that you know why I've been so busy, here is a pictorial guide of my baking efforts

              Nutella Cupcakes that spell : I love u (the seventh was for the guy to eat for himself)

Okay fine, so my lettering isn't perfect and probably Cake Wrecks worthy but who cares?
Here's how they look without the monstrous cookie topping and awful lettering:"

Quite yummy right?

Right, now on to the next cake which looked beautiful but was a near disaster:

Double chocolate whisky cake with bailey's fudge

As goegous as it looks, I made a big boo boo. I baked the cake using some dodgy sugar I bought from the supermarket. The guy who sold it was the only one open during that time and he claimed it was good as any other. WARNING: DO NOT BUY DODGY SUGAR.
The cake was alright but it just wasn't sweet enough? I didn't get to taste it but the person who bought it was mildly disappointed and I was too. Lesson learnt.
                        Next, a work of art that my department ordered from me:

                               Gula Melaka Coffee Cake with Vanilla cream and Sugar glaze

I was inspired by christmas. I mean, its the end of the year and I painstakingly spent a good half of the night trying to get the sugar glaze to look like icicles and making little snow flake patterns with the gold and silver dragees. YES. I had to ARRANGE EACH ONE to form the SNOWFLAKE. NO ITS NOT A STAR OR AN ASTRIX. THIS IS WHAT AN ASTRIX LOOKS LIKE.*. Fine. I guess it does look like an astrix/snowflake /what the ****. Point proven
Next up, experiments of the baking kind!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The cake that takes two days to make

         The cake that takes two days to make. The cake that takes two days to make. If you say it over and over again, it becomes a tongue twister.
         So what exactly is this cake that takes two bloody days to make, you might ask. You might even wonder if its really worth the trouble. The truth is, the cake that takes two days to make, or also known at Sugee Cake ( An almond semolina cake), is a pretty plain cake. Yet, everyone loves this cake and there is something deceptively delicious in its semi plainess. To be fair, its not really plain. Its hard to explain really. A german friend once called it my marzipan cake. I personally fell in love with it when I had it at a surprise party and my Eurasian friend's mother made it. It was divine.

       Imagine a cake that has a texture between a pound cake and a butter cake. Its moist, its crumbly yet sturdy and very aromatic. The smell is intoxicating. Its a heady mix of butter, semolina and almond all rolled into one. 

       Personally, I have tried making this many times and I think I finally have a winner. After much research, I combined two different recipes together. One is from Rose's Kitchen and the other is from a forum I found ages ago. If you happen to be the person who contriubted this recipe, I'm sorry I can't remember your name or where I got it from. If it looks familiar, I give you full credit! I modified both recipes quite a bit and created and ORANGE Almond Sugee cake. It has orange zest, peel and juice in the cake for an extra boost of flavour.

             Presenting to you my labour of love

Another view

             So what you are looking at is an Almond Orange Sugee Cake that is covered in homemade marzipan. Yes, I was insane enough to make my own marzipan. I coloured it orange, slapped it on the cake and made some red roses with the left over marzipan. My sister stepped in and made the vines and leaves and conceptualized the design. I thought it look rather pretty, if not slightly dated.

           Some process shots: Straight from the tin!

This is how it looks naked and undecorated. Still pretty damn tasty!

Then comes the glaze


All covered in Apricot Jam. I was too lazy to make the glaze or warm it or sieve it. Yes, yes, the elders frown upon me.

Now comes the money shot

And when you cut it open


Yes, its calorific. You will shudder if I told you how many eggs and how much butter and sugar went into the whole thing.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The great bake sale and children's day!

       I received an email from good old fellow baker Anna at the center where I teach, telling me that the company was holding a bake sale for the flood victims in the Phillippines so I said why not. I was given a day's notice and like a good samaritan, I produced the following:
                                     36 Tripple Chocolate Cupcakes                                

                                Yes, its a delectable and moist chocolate cupcake filled with large dark chocolate buttons and topped with a dark chocolate frosting. Piped to look like a rose because, lets face it, nothing screams seduction like a rose.

                                                     36  Strawberrylicious Cupcakes

                   These were made with real strawberries. Like a good peranakan, I pounded the strawberries by hand for both the cupcake and the frosting. Frosting was tricky to work with as it melted really fast. I had to add a lot more icing powder and then a little squeeze of lemon to counter the excessive sweetness. Topped with littlle heart sprinkles!
                    Then I remembered Anna asked me to make my Creamy Mushroom pie. So I produced

                             4 double crusts Creamy Mushroom pies. Pastry and Bechamel sauce both made from

                                 Sorry about the blurry shot. I was too so tired. And I overbaked the pies a little. The crusts were a little dry. Okay, too dry for my liking. Plus I used shortening instead of butter this time as I wanted a flakier crust. It definitely was flakier but not as yummy. But the filling was good. Brown and white button mushrooms sauteed with caramelized onions, slow roasted garlic smothered with a thick creamy bechamel sauce.

                       I was quite adventurous and made a 3.5kg Chocolate Whisky cake topped with a Bailey's Ganache, 54 mini cupcakes for the children that I teach at a chapel, another 80 double chocolate cupcakes and 42 strawberry cupcakes for the children in the center in a space of two nights.

                       Verdict: I am a good 1.5kg heavier due to constant taste testing and completely BAKED OUT. I don't want to see another cupcake or bowl of frosting in a long time.

                          In other news, PLEASE CHECK OUT MY NEW LOGO!

Yup, I finally had the cahonas to start my own bake site. IF you like the logo, its designed by good friend and colleague Carrie. She's amazing, with a degree in advertising design and like me, abandoned our fancy degrees to teach speech and drama! My site is still under construction so I won't shamelessly advertise just yet.