dimanche 30 août 2015

Snow Skin (KCT premix)

Last yeat I used Phoon Huat premix to make the snowskin moon cake and was very satisfied with the texture and taste but the skin will turn hard after 3-4 day.

Heard about Kwong Cheong Thye(KCT) and their assorted filling and so decided to try them out.

Head  to their factory at Senoko Ave(S758352), they are opened on Sat till 1pm.

Bought the Taiwan snowskin pre-mix which claimed that will give a softer texture for a long period .  However the factory do not have sampling available and all the filling are in 1 kg packing.
If you want smaller pack(500g) and sampling, please visit their retail outlet at No 61-63 Lorong 27 Geylang(S388186)

There were so many flavour for the filling but I bought low sugar green tea and the not commonly available flavour -custard and passionfruit.

Find that the paste is a bit sweet for my taste and regretted buying the 1kg pack at $16/each.
The passionfruit will goes well with snow skin while the other 2 flavours can go with traditional skin.

Ingredients: makes 9 or 10
25g Kao fen (糕粉-cooked glutinous rice flour)
115g Snowskin flour ( KCT Pinpe Premix Powder )
25g Icing sugar (sifted)
23g shortening
150g water
  1. Combine kao fen and snowskin flour (KWT Pinpe Premix Powder) in a big bowl and set aside.
  2. In a pot, add water with icing sugar and shortening together and bring them to boil until shortening melted, stir with a hand whisk.
  3. Pour the hot liquid mixture to the flour and use spatula to stir mixture to soft dough and leave dough to cool 
  4.  Knead dough again to smooth, add more kao fen to it if the dough is still too sticky.
  5. Divide dough into 3 portions and add a drop of colour into it. (pink, green, yellow)
  6. Measure dough to 25g and wrap in 25g filling paste any other filling you prefer.
  7. Roll it into a ball and dust with some cooked glutinous rice flour
    (kao fen 糕粉).
  8. I used Jelly mould to get the different design and flower design inspired from wagashi sweet cake.


Personally prefer PH premix which the texture and taste is close to those we try at professional bakery.
KCT premix gives a shine and kueh kueh texture which doesn't taste like our usual snowskin.

Do give it a try to see which you preferred.


vendredi 28 août 2015

Billionaire’s Franks & Beans – Welcome to the Top 1% of Comfort Foods

Maybe it’s the billionaire(s) in the news lately, but for some reason I decided to take one of America’s most frugal meals, franks and beans, and give it a high-end makeover. Besides, all the other classic comfort foods have been fancified, hipsterized, and/or molecular gastronomized; so I figured I would take this one down. And by down, I mean up.

Usually, franks and beans is made by opening up a couple cans of baked beans, and heating it up with some sliced hotdogs. Not exactly something you’d serve to visiting dignitaries. However, by adding some fresh veggies, plain beans, and high-quality beef hot dogs, we can achieve something much healthier, equally delicious, and every bit as comforting.

So, how much more will it cost you to make this usually cheap dish, using these upscale ingredients? It’s tempting to say, if you have to ask, you can’t afford it, but that’s not the case. Sure, the Kobe hotdogs will cost you a couple extra dollars, but the rest of the dish is still quite inexpensive. I really do hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!

Ingredients for 4 portions Franks & Beans:
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 diced yellow onion
1 diced poblano or other green pepper
2 tbsp minced fresh cayenne pepper, or other hot red pepper
1 rib celery, diced
1 pound hot dogs, sliced (literally any other sausage will work here)
2 (15-oz) cans cannellini beans, drained, rinsed
1 tbsp light brown sugar
1/4 cup ketchup
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
2 1/2 cup chicken broth, or as needed
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/4 cup sliced green onions
- serve with buttered toast and champagne

mercredi 26 août 2015

Lemon mango ice cream

My 4th attempt at preparing homemade ice cream.
It's so easy that I have stopped  buying store bought ice cream.
This recipe gives a tart and  creamy texture.

2 ripe mangoes
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup whipped cream
1 cup full cream milk
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
1 lemon - freshly squeeze juice

Strain mango Purée and stir in sugar till sugar dissolve
Add  milk,whipped cream ,vanilla paste and lemon juice mix well
Pour into ice cream maker and let it churn for 45 mins
Pour into box and keep in freezer overnight

mardi 25 août 2015

How to Make Fresh Spring Rolls – Authentic is as Authentic Does

Based on the YouTube comments appearing under the newly posted spring rolls video, lots of people missed the part about this not trying to be a specific recipe, but simply a demo featuring the magic that is damp, rice paper wrappers.

Don’t get me wrong; I love the “authentic” spring rolls I so often order at my friendly, neighborhood Vietnamese restaurant. Loaded with sweet shrimp, and bursting with vermicelli noodles, they are among the most delicious things ever invented.

However, I do reserve the right to soak rice paper wrappers in water, and… (I hope you’re sitting down for this) ...not make those! What you see here is just what I had on hand that day, and the next time I do a batch of these, who the heck knows what they’ll encase. If I have a point, that’s it.

Speaking of soaking in water, many commenters suggested that I dunk these in warm water for just a few seconds to hydrate, instead of the longer dip in cold water. I’ve tried both methods, and had more issues with the warmer/faster approach. They seemed to get too rubbery, too fast, which I found made the rolling harder.

Anyway, to each his own, and that goes for water temperature, filling ingredients, and dipping sauce. By the way, there are no ingredient amounts below, since that’s up to you entirely. You should be able to get “rice paper wrappers” at any large grocery store with an Asian food section, but if not, they’re easily found online. I hope you give these, or something similar, a try soon. Enjoy!

Click here to see our peanut sauce recipe video!

dimanche 23 août 2015

Shanghai Moon cake (Firm crust)

Bake this last year using another recipe which was soft and melty crust.
This time am trying out Kenneth Goh recipe using western short crust pastry.
The crust is firmer , buttery and with milk powder added, tastes good too.

Recipe source : Kenneth Goh
Short Crust Pastry
  • 80g butter, chilled and cut into cubes. Keep in fridge for later use
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 200g of self raising flour, sifted
  • 40g of icing sugar
  • 30g of custard powder
  • 20gof milk powder
  • 1-2 tablespoons of milk 
  • 4 salted egg yolks(pre-steamed for 5 minutes or microwave for15 seconds)
  • 50g of chopped walnuts
  • 350g of lotus seed paste/or any flavour paste
Egg washing
  • 1 egg yolk + 1 tbsp milk + few drops of cooking oil, beat and sift
  • Some melon seeds  for decoration
  • Some sesame seeds for decoration
  • Sift custard powder,self raising flour, icing sugar & milk powder in a bowl.
  • Add cold butter and use fingertips to rub the butter until it resembles some crumbs.
  • Add beaten egg yolk, cold milk and lightly knead till it forms a pliable dough. If the dough is too dry, add teaspoon by teaspoon of milk gradually.
  • Divide the dough into 4 equal balls (or your desired number of balls). Take one ball, flatten the dough, wrap a ball of filling, seal the edges and transfer to the cupcake cups or a lightly greased tray. 
  • Egg wash the dough as thoroughly as possible and baked in the oven for 10 minutes.
  • After 10 minutes, egg wash for the second time and while it was wet, put the melon seeds and sprinkle with some sesame seeds.
  • Baked again for another 10-15 minutes, depending the size of your moon cake. (Note: Alternatively, you can choose to egg wash once with melon seeds and sesame seeds once you do your first egg wash).

 You may be interested:

Shanghai Mooncake (Soft Crust)

Apple Streusel Cake

A bad habit of mine is whenever I see some interesting bakes online it will prompt me to bake it.
I will end up buying all the ingredients then I saw another bake..i changed my mind and end up with another baking project....
Wonder this happens to the rest of the baker.

Am not a person who like fruits, green apple particularly but after trying an apple candy(from Cheesecake factory)  coated with chocolate and walnut, i decided to explore on this Apple candy project.

That's how I ended up buying a box of granny smith apple(tart sweet and crunchy baking apples). but end up with this Apple streusel cake to get rid of the green apples.

Am so glad that I tried this apple streusel cake.
Love the texture of this cake, soft and fluffy with a layer of tart sweet apple slice and topped with crispy butter/brown sugar crumbs and the cinnamon smelt so good. Yumms...

Do give it a try and top with a scoop of ice cream...
I will be baking another and adding the rolled oats for that extra crisp for the topping.

Recipe adapted from joyofbaking.com


Streusel Topping:
1/2 cup (65 grams) all purpose flour        
1/4 cup (55 grams) firmly packed light brown sugar        
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons (40 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup (50 grams) toasted and coarsely chopped nuts: almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, or pecans(I used walnuts)
Cake Batter:
1 cup (130 grams) all purpose flour
1 teaspoon (4 grams) baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup (55 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated white sugar       
1 large egg, at room temperature         

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract( I used vanilla paste)

1/3 cup (80 ml) milk, at room temperature

2 large firm textured apples (I use Granny Smith), peeled, cored, and cut into thin (1/8 inch) slices

 Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C 
Butter and flour an 8 inch (20 cm) spring form pan.
Streusel Topping:
  • In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, ground cinnamon, and salt.
  • Rub the butter into flour until it resembles coarse crumbs.
  • Stir in the chopped nuts. Set aside while you make the cake batter.

Cake Batter
  • Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  • Use hand mixer, beat butter until creamy smooth, add sugar and beat till light/fluffy. 
  • Add egg and vanilla extract and beat until incorporated and add flour mixture(in three additions), alternately with the milk (in two additions), and beat just until combined. 
  • Spread the batter on your prepared pan, smoothing the top  
  • Evenly arrange the apple slices on top of the cake batter and then sprinkle with the streusel topping.
  • Bake for about 45 - 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool slightly. 
  • Serve warm or at room temperature with vanilla ice cream or softly whipped cream. Leftovers can be covered and stored for a few days.
Makes 8 - 10 servings.

Rub butter into flour and brown sugar mixture till coarse crumbs

Pour cake batter into pan and cover the batter with apple slice

Top apple with the streusel topping

vendredi 21 août 2015

Peach Financiers – Because French Bankers Hate Dirty Money

There are many different techniques used for making financiers, but as usual, I’ve chosen the easiest one. I would have been happy to try those other more complicated versions, but fortunately, I enjoyed this one so much, there’s no need.

I mention in the video that these are called “financiers” because they’re rich, and look like gold bars (if you use the traditional rectangular molds). Well, apparently that’s not quite right.

Word on the “rue” is that there was a bakery next to the Paris stock exchange that made these small almond cakes so bankers could enjoy them on the way to work, without getting their fingers dirty. I assume this is accurate, since I read it in the YouTube comments.

Anyway, not only is this an easy recipe, but it works beautifully with pretty much any summer fruit. Berries are popular, as are other stone fruits. Just don’t use too much. It’s merely a garnish, and adding too much could effect the texture and cooking time. I hope you give these delicious peach financiers a try soon. Enjoy!

Ingredients for 12 small cakes:
3 egg whites
1/2 cup white sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup almond meal (or finely ground almonds)
3 tablespoons flour
3 oz unsalted butter (6 tablespoons), toasted to a golden-brown
12 small sliced of peach
- I used mini-muffin pans, so you'll have to adjust your time if you used regular muffin tins, or other molds.
- Bake for 5 minutes at 400 F., then top with fruit, and continue baking until browned, about 10-12 minutes.

mardi 18 août 2015

Homemade Dill Pickles – Naturally Fermented, Whatever That Means

This is going to be an easy post, in that I know virtually nothing about fermenting pickles. The only thing I know for sure is how to make them, and for me, that’s enough. If you make a simple salt brine, add some spices, and submerge Kirby cucumbers in it for about a week, you get some fairly delicious pickles.

Maybe it’s dumb luck, or just overwhelmingly good karma, but fortunately I’ve not experienced any of the problems I’ve seen others lament; such as mushy texture, scary molds, or exploding jars. Apparently, cucumbers are one of the more finicky things to pickle, but that hasn’t been my experience.

Like I said in the video, I’ve only made these a handful of times, so maybe my time is coming, but I’m pretty sure if you measure your salt right, and store the fermenting pickles at an appropriate temperature, you should get something close to what you see here.

Having said that, I will refer any and all of your questions having to do with variations, troubleshooting, probiotics, and/or best practices, to the Internet. The purpose of this video is to simply show the process, and how ridiculously easy it is. If this seems like something you want to try, and it should, I recommend doing lots of research before starting, so at least you’ll have someone else to blame if things go horribly wrong.

One thing I can tell you for sure is that you have to use pure salt for this. Table salt can contain additives like iodine, which inhibits the bacterial growth necessary for this to work. I’m also giving you weight measurements for the salt, since the size of the salt crystal can really effect measuring by volume.

Other than getting your brine right, just be sure to get very fresh, very firm pickling cucumbers to make this with. If your cucumbers start off soft and mushy, your pickles will be terrible, and not have that loud crunch associated with the finest examples. I really do hope you give this a try. Enjoy!

2 pounds very fresh Kirby cucumbers, washed thoroughly
Handful of fresh, flowering dillweed
For the brine:
8 cups cold fresh water
8 tablespoons Kosher salt (By weight, you wants exactly 80 grams. The brand of kosher salt I use weighs about 10 gram per tablespoon, but yours may not, so it’s best to use a scale if possible.)
4 cloves peeled garlic
2 teaspoons whole coriander seed
2 teaspoon black peppercorn
3 or 4 bay leaves
4 whole cloves

- Ferment at room temperature (I hear that between 70-75 F. is ideal) for about a week. Check every day as these can ferment fast. They are done when you like the taste. If you go too far, they start to get soft, and the inside gets hollow. Keep the brine level topped off.
- This makes extra brine for topping off.

Pickling Spice Note: I tend not to like a lot of spices in my pickles, so I believe the amounts listed here are fairly puny compared to most recipes. Feel free to find one of the many pickling spices recipes online, and use that instead.

dimanche 16 août 2015

Sponge Fruit Cake


Prepared this fruit cake for my niece a day before we decided to have an early birthday celebration for her.

As it was a last min. "order" It was an overnight bake with whatever ingredient
I can find in pantry.

I recalled the sponge cake I bake for my mango mousse cake was very soft and fluffy hence I decided to try the same sponge cake recipe for this fruit cake.

Gladly the cake turned out softer as compared to some of the butter cake I bake. This is a good basic sponge cake recipe!

Recipe source from The Baking Biatch

This recipe yields 1x  8" round cake (removal base)

A)Sponge cake
4 eggs, room temperature (55g eggs)
100g cake flour
100g castor sugar
100g oil
*not in recipe: Added 1tsp of vanilla bean paste 
B) Frosting(Cream Cheese Whipped cream)

125g cream cheese, softened at room temperature for an hour
1 cups whipping cream
1-2 tablespoons powdered sugar (or to taste)

1 tbsp. lemon juice
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
* Alternatively, you can use only whipped cream and sugar

C) Decoration
1 mango
1 kiwi
3 strawberry
For Glazing, one tbsp. of jam + 1tsp water

Cream Cheese Whipped Cream
Whip the cream cheese with sugar until creamy and add in the lemon juice. 

In a larger bowl whip the cream until it forms stiff peak.
Scrape in the cream cheese and continue whipping until it forms stiff peaks and add in vanilla.

Sponge cake
1) whisk egg and sugar in high speed till pale, thick and stiff texture.(7mins)
    add vanilla bean paste 
2) Fold in sifted flour and oil (alternate) to the egg mixture till well mixed.
3) Grease and line 8" pan bottom and side as well and preheated oven at 160c
    for 20-25mins, mine took 45 mins. for the skewer come out clean.
4) Remove cake from oven n remove the baking paper n let it cool.
5) You can slice the cake into 2 layers if you want to have whipped cream or
    mousse sandwich between but I leave it as one cake.
6) Cream coat the side of the cake and roll in roasted peanuts or almonds flakes
7) Cream coat the top of the cake and lay the fruits as desire
8) Use star tip and Pipe cream round the border 
9) Glaze the fruits for a glossy look and also prevent fruit from browning due to oxidation (esp. mango)
Egg and Oil sponge cake- shrink a little

Crump coat side and roll it over roasted peanut
Sealed it in box and refrigerate till ready to serve

Finally the chance to use the label I bought

Interior of cake, soft and light texture
You may also be interested:
Mocha Cake with Azuki bean

vendredi 14 août 2015

Grilled Pattypan Squash with Hot Chorizo Vinaigrette – Almost Stuffed

Michele does a fantastic, sausage-stuffed pattypan squash, which was actually how these were supposed to be prepared, but someone, and we won’t name names, didn’t pay attention to buying ones of a uniform size, which is kind of a big deal if you want them to bake evenly. Okay, it was me.

In an attempt to redeem myself, I decided to grill them instead – a cooking method where any size will work – and top them with a hot chorizo vinaigrette. It’s something I’ve wanted to try for a while, and it really turned out to be a wonderful combination.

The ingredients below are just a rough guide, and you’ll have to figure out your own amounts, depending on how much squash you grill, but I do recommend a 1-to-1 ratio of sherry vinegar to olive oil/rendered chorizo fat.

I used a veal chorizo, which was very lean, so I had to add a good amount of olive oil. If you use pork chorizo, you’ll have a lot of rendered fat, so you may want to drain off most of it, keeping a few tablespoons, before adding your oil and vinegar.

Speaking of oil, don’t put any on your squash before you toss it on the grill. I used to do this myself, because it seemed logical, but it’s a bad idea. The dripping oil causes flare-ups that can make your veggies taste like gasoline, which is not good eats. Other than that, not much can go wrong with this simple summer dish. I hope you give it a try soon. Enjoy!

Ingredients for 4 portions
8 pattypan squash
kosher salt to taste
6-8 ounces fresh, raw chorizo sausage
(crumbled fine, and browned well in olive oil)
*you want to leave about 2 tablespoons rendered chorizo fat in the pan
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup sherry vinegar (or, use any vinegar you like)
splash of water to maintain moisture level if needed
1 tablespoon freshly sliced mint leaves

mardi 11 août 2015

Spicy Caramel Chicken and a History Lesson

I’ve wanted to film an updated version of this caramel chicken for many years. It was one of the first videos I ever posted, and its unexpected popularity made me realize that there were actually people (non-relatives) watching these videos.

The original vision for Food Wishes was an online cooking school, where I’d charge tuition for a series of courses that would mimic the culinary school I’d just left. I started filming a few recipes each week, knowing full well that only a handful of people would see them, but I had to learn my new craft.

Caramel Chicken, Circa 2007
As the library grew, so did the audience, and I realized that instead of charging for the content, I could give it away for free, and maybe survive on the ad revenue that YouTube was just starting to offer. Above and beyond that, I was getting emails and comments, telling me that what I was doing was making them happy.

This wasn’t something I’d anticipated, and while at the time I would have preferred money, it was great to hear, and inspired me to push on. The rest, as they say, is history, and every time I got an email asking for an updated version of this recipe, I would fondly remember how all this came to be.

So, whether you were here from the very beginning, or you’re brand new, and will be trying caramel chicken for the very first time, I really hope you give this fast, easy, delicious, and historically significant recipe a try soon. Enjoy!

Makes 4 large portions:
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut in about 1 inch chunks
1/2 cup sliced, seeded jalapeno peppers
1/2 cup sliced, seeded mild red chilies, or bell peppers
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup roasted peanuts
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
4 cups cooked white rice

For the sauce mixture:
2 tbsp finely grated fresh ginger
4 cloves finely minced garlic
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup rice vinegar
1/3 cup fish sauce
1 tsp soy sauce
2 tsp hot sauce, or to taste

vendredi 7 août 2015

Grilled Beef Flank Steak “Pastrami” – Backyard Deli

I’ll do a proper pastrami one of these days. Maybe right after I get a smoker. But in the meantime, this pastrami-spiced beef flank steak should do nicely. As with all "cheater" recipes, managing your expectations is key.

You can’t get the texture and color of a real “pastrami” without the curing step, where the meat is soaked in a brine, before being spiced/smoked, but you can get pretty close to the flavor, using the spice rub seen herein.

We’ve used a similar technique to turn plain corned beef into “pastrami,” as well as create a duck Reuben; one of my favorite videos of all time. By the way, the ingredient amounts below have been adjusted slightly, as my spice rub was a tad bit overpowering.

I’ve backed down the black pepper and mustard, but as with all spice amounts, that’s really up to you. If you simply put salt and pepper on a flank steak, and grill it properly, you’ll have something delicious to eat, so keep that in mind as you rub your meat. 

I ate mine fresh, but if you let it cool, slice it thin, and warm it up in a pan with a little splash of water, and a tiny pinch of sugar, you’ll have something even more pastrami-like. I really hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!

SPECIAL NOTE: I let my meat warm to room temp before grilling, so the inside reaches my desired temp a little quicker, and before the outside spice rub gets too black. Conversely, when grilling a steak, and there's nothing to burn on the surface, I generally like the meat cold, so the outside has plenty of time to sear, before the meat inside is done. 

Ingredients for 4 large portions:
1 trimmed beef flank steak (usually 1.5 to 1.75 pounds)
2 tsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp ground coriander
1 tbsp kosher salt
2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp dry mustard
- For best results, cook to a medium. I pulled at about 135 F. internal temp, which will rise to about 140 F. as it rests.
-Serve with slightly sweetened mustard and rye bread