Monday, September 30, 2013

Chicken in Glutinous Rice Wine


This Chicken in Glutinous Rice Wine dish is an essential soup for women recovering from after childbirth, taken after the twelve day of delivery.  Usually a home-brew, this rice wine uses glutinous rice and Chinese yeast cake and left to ferment in an air-tight jar for about a month.  This is  healthy food for post-natal mothers, helps in blood circulation, helpts to get rid of  wind and warms the body.  It can be served on its own or with hot white rice or taken with noodles.




















Recipe for Chicken in Glutinous Rice Wine

    Ingredients
    • half  free-range chicken
    • 5 Shitake mushrooms, soaked, stemmed and cut
    • 1 piece wood ear fungus/mook yee
    • 1 small piece ginger, sliced
    • 4 cups water
    • 1 cup Chinese glutinous rice wine
    • Sesame oil
    • Salt and a bit of rock sugar to taste
    Method
    1. Saute the chicken with some sesame oil and ginger till fragrant.
    2. Add in the mushrooms and wood ear fungus, stir-fry.
    3. Add in 4 cups of water, bring to the boil, lower heat and simmer till chicken is cooked through.
    4. Pour in the glutinous rice wine (add more if desired), simmer to a light boil.
    5. Add salt and rock sugar to taste.
    6. Turn off heat, ladle onto serving bowls.
    7. Serve.

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Thursday, September 26, 2013

Greentea Ogura Cake


Not too long ago, in many food blogs, there was a rave about this Ogura Cake aka 'Xiang Si  Cake' which in Chinese literally means 'lovesick' or  'pining for a loved one'.  'Ogura' is a common Japanese name.  This particular cake hails from a bakery chain called Family Bakery in Batu Pahat, Johore, a southern state in Malaysia.  I've no idea why this particular name is given to the cake, perhaps the bakery wanted to create a unique name so that customers will be curious about it and try this cake out of curiosity.... marketing strategy?  The texture of this cake is more or less like the chiffon cake, soft, light and cottony.






Recipe for Greentea Ogura Cake

    Ingredients
    • 70ml  water 
    • 5 gm Greentea powder
    • 40 ml vegetable oil
    • 1/4  tsp salt
    • 55 gm plain flour
    • 4 egg yolks + 1 whole egg
    • 150 gm egg whites
    • 1/4 tsp creamof tartar
    • 70 gm sugar
    • 1  Tbsp black sesame seeds, lightly toasted
    Method
    1. Mix water with the Greentea powder, set aside.
    2. Whisk egg yolks, whole egg, oil and Greentea paste until well combined.
    3. Sift in the flour with the salt a little at a time and mix until smooth and lump free.
    4. Beat egg whites until foamy before adding in the cream of tartar.
    5. Gradually add in sugar and continue to beat until  soft peaks form.
    6. Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the Greentea mixture until well combined.
    7. Add the mixture into the remaining egg whites and fold gently until well combined.  Use a ball whisk to run through the batter after mixing to ensure even mixing.  
    8. Mix in the black sesame seeds thoroughly.
    9. Pour batter into a parchment lined 7 inch square pan, even out the top using a spatula and give the pan a few firm taps to remove any trapped air bubbles.
    10. Bake @ 160 deg.C for 10 mins,  and @ 150deg.C for 50 to 60 mins.
    11. Remove from oven and invert the cake onto a cooling rack to cool.
    12. Run a spatula round the sides of the pan, unmould the cake and remove the parchment paper.
    13. Trim off the edges and cut with a serrated knife to serve.
 Note :  I didn't steam bake this cake, thus resulting in some cracks on the surface of the cake.

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Monday, September 23, 2013

Slow Cooker Mixed Spice Pork


I'm trying to make more use of my slow-cooker which has been in hibernation far too long and if you don't crank up your electrical appliances once in a while, they may decide to go on strike!  To make cooking a meal for my family more hassle free, I concocted this recipe for Mixed Spice Pulled Pork which pairs well with rice and some blanched vegetables on the side.  The spices and sauces that I dumped into the slow cooker were reduced to a rich and flavourful sauce in 5 hours on medium heat.







Recipe for Slow Cooker Mixed Spice Pork

    Ingredients
    • 800 gm pork shoulder
    • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
    • 2 Bay leaves
    • 1 cinnamon stick
    • 4 cloves
    • 2 star anise
    • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
    • 2 cups water
    • 1 Tbsp cornflour
    • 1 tsp chicken granules
    • Seasalt to taste
    • Sauces :  1 tsp dark soya sauce and 2 tsp light soya sauce

    Method
    1. Season the pork with seasalt and freshly ground pepper.
    2. Heat oil in a pan, add pork to pan-fry, turning over until browned all over, 10 mins.
    3. Transfer the pork to a slow cooker.
    4. Add in sugar, Bay leaves, cinnamon stick, cloves, star anise and chicken granules.  Pour in the water.
    5. Cover and let cook on medium heat for 5 hours or till soft and tender.
    6. Remove pork.
    7. Mix the cornflour with the sauce.  Put back the pork and the cornflour mixture into the slow cooker, stir well.  Cover and cook for 15 mins. till thicken,
    8. Dish out and serve with white rice, toasts or mantou.


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Monday, September 16, 2013

# Bundtamonth : Beet Chocolate Cake


This is a moist fudgy cake but with an unusual combination of chocolate and  raw beetroot.  The combination did complement each other and the cake is tasty, easy to make and it tasted much better the next day.













Recipe for Beet Chocolate Cake

    Ingredients
    • 20 gm Varlhona cocoa powder
    • 230 gm plain flour + 2 tsp baking powder  OR 230 gm Self-Raising flour
    • 120 gm brown sugar
    • 100 gm dark chocolate
    • 125 gm butter
    • 250 gm beetroot, grated
    • 3 eggs
    • 1/4  tsp vanilla
    • pinch of salt
    • Icing sugar for dusting (optional)
    Method
    1. Melt the chocolate either by double boiling or microwave, leave aside.
    2. Sift plain flour, salt, baking powder and cocoa powder.  Set aside.
    3. Beat butter and sugar till light and creamy, add in the eggs one at a time.
    4. Mix in the melted chocolate.
    5. Fold in the sifted cocoa and flour.  Mix well.
    6. Stir in the grated beetroot, mix well.
    7. Pour batter into a greased and flour dusted 23 cm Bundt pan.
    8. Bake in a preheated oven @ 180 deg C for 45 mins.  Test with a skewer till it comes out clean.
    9. Let cake cool in pan before unmoulding and cooling it completely on a wire rack.
    10. Lightly dust with icing sugar before serving.
 Note :  1. Alternatively, mix some icing sugar with the beetroot juice and drizzle onto the cooled cake.
                 



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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Pandan Black Sesame Snow Skin Mooncakes ~ 2013


Pandan  Snow Skin or Ping Pei Mooncakes are one of my favourite in the ping pei range of mooncakes.  This time I added in some black sesame seeds to it.  I dare not take the plunge to toss in more sesame seeds as I was afraid that the tiny black dots will mar the design of these mini mooncakes.












Recipe for Pandan Black Sesame Snow Skin Mooncakes




    Ingredients
    • 100 gm koh fun/cooked glutinous rice flour
    • 100 gm icing sugar
    • 32 gm shortening
    • 125 ml ice cold pandan juice
    • 2.1/2 tsp lightly toasted black sesame seeds
    • 60 gm or more Pandan/Screwpine leaves
    • 150 ml or a bit more boiled water
    • 500 gm Lotus paste
    • 20 gm lightly toasted melon seeds.
     Method
    1. Wash, cut the Pandan leaves into small pieces, add in boiled water, blend and squeeze out the juice.  Pour into a measuring cup, keep in the fridge for about 2 to 3 days to let the residue settle.
    2. Sift the koh fun and icing sugar into a mixing bowl, mix well.
    3. Add and rub in the shortening till resemble bread crumbs.
    4. Gradually add in the chilled Pandan juice and black sesame seeds and mix till just combined.  (Do not overmix).  Cover and let rest for 15 mins.
    5. Scale into 25 gm balls of dough.
    6. Mix the Lotus paste with the melon seeds.
    7. Roll into balls of 35 gm each.
    To assemble the mooncake
    1. Flatten the dough in between 2 plastic sheets, wrap up the ball of filling, roll into a ball.
    2. Press into a flour dusted mould.  Press out and dislodge the mooncake.
    3. Place mooncakes in a container and cover with a piece of kitchen towel to absorb any condensation.
    4. Keep refrigerated  before serving.
    5. Yield : about 13 pieces of  mooncake.





    I'm linking this post to the Little Thumbs Up 'Pandan' event, organised by Zoe of  Bake for Happy Kids,

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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Traditional Mixed Nuts Mooncake ~ 2013



Traditional Mixed Nuts Mooncake was my dad's perennial favourite.  At that time I couldn't understand why this festive traditional mooncake was most enjoyed by the older folks.  But nowadays, I too have slowly acquired the taste for this sweet, salty and nutty variety.  These cakes are best cut in  small wedges, savoured by small delicate bites and not by the mouthfuls, and they are best enjoyed with a pot of hot Chinese tea.  







Recipe for Traditional Mixed Nuts Mooncake

    Ingredients (Dough)

    • 150 gm superfine flour, sifted
    • 90 ml golden syrup
    • 38 ml vegetable oil
    • 2 ml alkaline water
    • Egg wash - 1 whole egg + 1 tsp water, mix well and strain.
    Method
    1. Mix syrup, oil and alkaline water thoroughly with a handwhisk.
    2. Sift in flour, mix well with spatula and let rest for 2 hours or more, till it doesn't stick to the hands.
    3. Knead lightly on a floured surface.
    4. Weigh out 55 gm of dough, roll into balls and set aside.

    Ingredients (Filling)
    • 30 gm walnuts, toasted and chopped
    • 30 gm almonds, toasted and chopped
    • 19 gm pumpkin kernels, toasted
    • 38 gm kat paeng/candied lemon, chopped
    • 75 gm dried winter melon, chopped
    • 38 gm sesame seeds, toasted
    • 30 gm caster sugar
    • 60 gm koh fun
    • 2.1/4 Tbsp vegetable oil
    • 2.1/4 Tbsp water
    • 3/4  Tbsp rose concentrate
    • 3/8  Tbsp   golden syrup
    • 1.1/4  Tbsp Brandy (optional)
    • 1/8 tsp salt
    • 3 Kaffir leaves, shredded
    Method
    1. Mix all the ingredients except the koh fun and Brandy.
    2. Leave mixture to rest for 1 hour.
    3. Mix in the koh fun, Brandy and roll out into balls of 150 gm portion.
    To assemble the Mooncake
    1. Flatten the piece of dough and wrap around a ball of filling.  Shape prepared dough into a ball and press into a lightly floured mooncake mould.  Shake off any excess flour from the mould.
    2. Press the prepared portion of dough into the mooncake mould, press out to dislodge the mooncake.
    3. Place mooncakes onto a parchment lined baking tray.
    4. Lightly spray some water onto the mooncakes.
    5. Bake in a preheated oven @ 180 deg.C for 15 to 20 mins.  Remove from oven, let mooncakes cool for 15 mins.  Apply eggwash once.  Return mooncakes to the oven and bake again for 7 to 9 min. until golden brown.  Let them cool completely.
    6. Keep cooled mooncakes in an air-tight container for the skin to soften.  This will take about 3 days, thereafter they can be eaten.


Continue reading "Traditional Mixed Nuts Mooncake ~ 2013"

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