Monday, October 31, 2016

Sour plum Chicken ~ 酸梅鸡


There are many sweet and sour dishes in Chinese cuisine and many of them calls for deep-frying of the meat, be it chicken, pork, pork ribs or fish.  I do not encourage deep-frying in my kitchen and this dish only requires some sauteing and pan-frying and hence not much of oily mess to clean up. The sweet and sour sauce helps to 'open' up your appetite and pairs very well with white rice or bread.





Sour Plum Chicken  ~  酸梅鸡    

Ingredients
  • 700 gm free-range chicken, cut into bite size
  • 1 tomato, cut in wedges
  • 2 sour plums, lightly mashed
  • 4 pips garlic, chopped
  • a small knob of ginger, chopped
  • 2 red birdeye chillies, chopped
  • 1 tsp taucheong, bean paste
  • 1/2 tsp dark soya sauce
  • Seasalt to taste
  • Sugar to taste
  • 2 tsp Cornflour + 1 Tbsp water to thicken

Method
  1. Marinate the chicken with some seasalt
  2. In a non-stick pan, heat up some oil and saute
  3. the chopped garlic, ginger, chillies and bean paste till fragrant
  4. Add in the chicken , pan fry and add in 1 cup of water, the sour plum and
  5. let it simmer till chicken is cooked
  6. Add in dark soya sauce, seasalt and sugar to taste
  7. Toss in the tomato wedges
  8. Add in cornflour mixture to thicken
  9. Dish out and serve with rice




Continue reading "Sour plum Chicken ~ 酸梅鸡 "

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Orange chocolate chiffon cake ~ 鮮橙巧克力戚风蛋糕


This soft and moist chiffon cake has a combination of orange and chocolate flavour and the texture is light and cottony.  To give it a facelift, I dusted it with chocolate powder over a template.  Fresh orange juice and zest do pair very well with the chocolate and they complement each other. Great to pair with a cup of perfectly brewed tea!




Orange chocolate chiffon cake ~  鮮橙巧克力戚风蛋糕    (adapted from 'here')

Ingredients

(A)  6 egg yolks
        22 gm caster sugar
        75 ml canola oil
        105 ml orange juice
        135 gm plain flour
        15 gm cornflour
        1.1/2 Tbsp chocolate powder
        Zest from 1.1/2 orange
 
(B)   6 egg whites
        97 gm caster sugar

Method

  1. Sift plain flour and cornflour, set aside.
  2. With a ball whisk, beat yolk eggs with sugar till pale, add in oil, orange juice and zest. Mix well.
  3. Sift the flour and cornflour mixture into the egg yolk mixture, mix well till smooth.
  4. In a clean bowl, beat egg whites till frothy, then add in sugar in three batches and continue beating till stiff peaks form.
  5. Fold 1/3 meringue into the egg mixture, mix well followed by the balance egg whites.
  6. Divide the batter into 2 portions.  Mix one portion with the chocolate powder.
  7. Scoop half portion of the plain batter into an ungreased 23 cm chiffon cake pan, followed by a layer of chocolate batter, then cover up with the remaining plain batter.  
  8. Lightly drop the pan on the work top to dispel any air bubbles.
  9. Bake on the lower rack of a preheated oven @ 170 deg.C for 50 to 60 mins.  Test with a skewer till it comes out clean.
  10. Invert the cake immediately and let cool completely.  Unmould by hand.
  11. Dust with chocolate or cocoa powder as desired.




Continue reading "Orange chocolate chiffon cake ~ 鮮橙巧克力戚风蛋糕 "

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Pumpkin Angku Kuih ~ 南瓜龟糕


These Pumpkin Angku Kuih were made using the same recipe as my  Pandan Angku Kuih but I substituted sweet potatoes with pumpkin.  Another minor adjustment that I made was  I used water in this recipe instead of green pandan juice.  Also, I made the mung bean filling a little bit savoury by adding in finely chopped shallots and some salt.  So these Pumpkin Angku Kuih tasted a bit sweet and salty and they were soft and chewy..... Yum!



























Pumpkin Angku Kuih ~ 南瓜龟糕
    Ingredients for Pre-prepard dough
    • 150 gm glutinous rice flour
    • 125 ml water
    Mix these two ingredients to form a dough, cover and refrigerate overnight.

    Ingredients for Filling
    • 150 gm split mung beans, soaked overnight
    • 80 gm granulated sugar
    • 1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
    • 2  Tbsp oil
    • 4 small shallots, finely chopped
    Method
    1. Rinse, drain and rinse the mung beans, steam for about 30mins. or till soft.  While hot, blend them with about 3/4 cup of water till it forms into a paste.
    2. In a non-stick pan, saute the shallots with the oil till fragrant, add in the mung bean paste and salt, fry till it leaves the sides of the pan.  Fine tune to taste.
    3. Dish out and let cool.  Cover with cling wrap and keep refrigerated till ready for use.
    4. Roll out into balls of  12 to15 gm for the mini kuih and 45 to 50 gm for the normal kuih.
    Ingredients for Dough
    • 100m ml water
    • 2.1/4  tsp rice flour
    • 1  Tbsp oil
    • 2  tsp caster sugar
    • 40 gm glutinous flour (add this sparingly, may not need the whole amount)
    • 100 gm pumpkin, peeled, steamed and mashed
    • Banana leaves, cut into bigger size than the moulds, grease with oil.
    Method
    1. Mix water with the rice flour, oil and sugar.  Mix till smooth.  Cook over low heat, stirring to make a smooth paste.  Leave to cool.
    2. Add rice flour paste to the mashed pumpkin, mix and add in the 'pre-prepared dough', mix, add in the 40 gm glutinous rice flour, sparingly and knead lightly till thoroughly mixed.  Dough should be soft and moist but not sticky.
    3. Weigh out dough accordingly,  12 to15 gm for the mini kuih and 45 to 50 gm for the normal size kuih.
    Assembling the kuih
    1. Flatten the dough, wrap with the filling, shape into a ball and press into the lightly rice flour dusted moulds.  Knock out the kuih and place onto a piece of greased banana leaf.
    2. Heat up a steamer and steam the kuih on medium heat, 3 mins. for the mini  kuih and 6 mins. for the normal size kuih.
    3. Remove from steamer and immediately brush the kuih with some oil.
    4. Yield :  8 normal size kuih and 12 mini size kuih


Continue reading "Pumpkin Angku Kuih ~ 南瓜龟糕"

Monday, October 24, 2016

Steamed Minced Pork with Salted Fish ~ 咸鱼蒸肉饼


Steamed minced pork with salted fish is quite a common dish in Chinese households.  The salted fish is an acquired taste and it can be sweet smelling to some while others may simply detest it.  There are variations to this dish, some people may use minced pork and others may use thinly sliced pork belly.







Steamed Minced Pork with Salted Fish ~  咸鱼蒸肉饼

Ingredients

300 gm minced pork (with some slightly fatty pork)
2 tsp Shaoxing wine
2 Tbsp water
2 tsp cornflour
1/2 tsp ground ginger
30 gm salted fish, sliced
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp sugar
some finely julienned ginger
sesame oil to drizzle

Method

With a pair of chopsticks mix the minced pork with the wine, water,
 cornflour, salt, sugar and ground ginger to form a paste
Let rest for half an hour
Transfer the mixture to a heat-proof plate and level with the back of the spoon
Place sliced salted fish on top 
Sprinkle with the julienned ginger
Steam under rapidly boiling water for about 10 mins.
Turn off heat and let the dish sit for 2 to 3 mins.
Drizzle on some sesame oil
Serve hot with rice or porridge



Continue reading "Steamed Minced Pork with Salted Fish ~ 咸鱼蒸肉饼 "

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Lemon Cake with Cognac ~ 白兰地柠檬蛋糕


I have baked lemon cakes before but not one with Cognac or Brandy.  So I was eager to give this recipe a shot when I saw Zoe posted it on her blog and gave a raving review on it.  True to what she said, this cake is moist and lemony with the lemon icing and I used homegrown lemons for this recipe.  In fact I doubled the recipe and baked two loaves of this yummy cake and those who had tasted it, gave a thumbs up!




Lemon Cake with Cognac ~  白兰地柠檬蛋糕
(adapted from 'here' with modification)

Ingredients  

200 gm unsalted butter
300 gm caster sugar
350 gm plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
4 large eggs
6 Tbsp milk
2 Tbsp Cognac/Brandy

Icing - 120 gm icing sugar + fresh juice from 4 lemons.  Mix till icing sugar has dissolved.
                  
Method

  1. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar till light and fluffy.
  2. Sift flour, baking powder and salt into the butter mixture.
  3. Add eggs, milk and cognac/brandy.
  4. Beat till creamy.
  5. Pour batter into greased and lightly flour dusted loaf pans.
  6. Bake in a preheated oven @ 180 deg.C for 30 to 35 mins.  Test with a skewer till it comes out clean.
  7. While waiting for the cakes to be baked, make the lemony icing.
  8. Once the cakes are removed from the oven, pour the lemony icing over the HOT cakes and let the icing be absorbed into the cakes.  Let the cakes cool completely before slicing up and serve.




Continue reading "Lemon Cake with Cognac ~ 白兰地柠檬蛋糕"

Monday, October 17, 2016

Tomato, onion and celery soup ~ 番茄洋葱和芹菜汤


This is a very simple clear soup, quick and easy to prepare with a few ingredients.   I like to serve clear soups at meals and it is most welcoming especially on a hot day.  




 Tomato, onion and celery soup ~  番茄洋葱和芹菜汤

Ingredients
2 tomatoes, cut into wedges
2 onions, cut into sections
3 stalks celery, cut into 2 inch lengths
2 stalks spring onions
350 gm pork ribs
3 lt water
Seasalt to taste

Method
Scald the pork ribs in boiling water, remove and rinse in running water
Bring the 3 lt of water to a light boil
Add in all the ingredients
Bring to a boil and simmer for 2 hours
Add salt to desired taste
Serve



Continue reading "Tomato, onion and celery soup ~ 番茄洋葱和芹菜汤"

Monday, October 10, 2016

American Sponge Cake ~ 美国海绵蛋糕

A light sponge that resembles a chiffon cake but does not contain any solid fat, absolutely suitable for weight watchers.  You can serve this with some ice cream or fresh fruits or just enjoy it on its own.





American Sponge Cake  ~  美国海绵蛋糕 (adapted from 'here' with slight modification)

Ingredients (A)


  • 6 large eggs
  • 100 gm plain flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 100 gm caster sugar (reduced from 200 gm)
  • 1 tsp vanills
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • Lemon or orange zest
(B) 

  • 6 large egg whites
  • 65 gm sugar
  • 3/4 tsp cream of tartar
Method
  1. Beat egg yolks with sugar till thick and fluffy and the batter falls back in a ribbon pattern.
  2. Add in vanilla, water and zest.
  3. Sift flour over the egg mixture, a third at a time and gently fold into the mixture with a spatula or a ball whisk.
  4. Beat egg whites till foamy, add in cream of tartar and beat till soft peaks form.
  5. Add in sugar in two batches and beat till shiny and stiff peaks form.
  6. Fold the egg whites into the egg yolk mixture a little at a time, do not overmix lest the egg whites be deflated.
  7. Pour the batter into an ungreased 23 cm tube pan, level the surface.
  8. Bake on a lower rack in a preheated oven @ 180 deg.C for about 55 to 60 mins. and if the top turns brown, reduce to 170 deg.C for the last 10 mins.  Test with a skewer till it comes out clean.
  9. Remove from oven and immediately invert the cake, let cool completely and umould by hand or with a sharp knife.
  10. Dust some icing sugar on the top before serving. 


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Thursday, October 6, 2016

Steamed free-range chicken with chicken essence ~ 鸡精蒸鸡


Essence of chicken is supposed to be beneficial to health and if you're feeling tired, taking a bottle of chicken essence will  help boost up your energy.  Unfortunately I dislike taking the essence straight from the bottle as I do not fancy the raw taste.  So, I poured in a bottle to this dish and it really helped to give some 'oomph' and value added taste to this chicken dish!  




Steamed free-range chicken with chicken essence ~   鸡精蒸鸡


Ingredients

  • 2 whole leg chicken, chopped into bite size 1.1/2 tsp seasalt
  • 1/8 tsp sugar
  • 1 bottle of chicken essence (any brand)
  • 1 tsp cornflour
  • Spring onions to garnish   
Method
  1. Marinate the chicken pieces with the seasalt, sugar and cornflour for a few  hours or overnight.
  2. Steam the chicken on high heat till cooked.
  3. Pour in a bottle of chicken essence, mix well, turn off heat.
  4. Garnish with spring onions.
  5. Serve with rice.
 


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Monday, October 3, 2016

Avocado Chocolate Cake ~ 鳄梨巧克力蛋糕


I made this Avocado Chocolate Cake with homegrown avocados and no butter was involved in this recipe.  Instead the recipe called for some vegetable oil and the cake turned out  moist and soft.   Together with the chocolate frosting, the cake was an instant hit with both the adults and kids.




Avocado Chocolate Cake  ~  鳄梨巧克力蛋糕  (adapted from  'here'  with modification)

Ingredients

  • 384 gm plain flour
  • 200 gm caster sugar
  • 6 Tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 ripe Avocado, pitted and mashed till very smooth
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp white vinegar
  • 2 tsp vanilla
Frosting
  • 2 ripe avocados, pitted and mashed
  • 125 gm icing sugar
  • 2 Tbsp cocoa powder
Method
  1. Grease and flour an 8 inch tube pan, set aside.
  2. Sift or whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt, set aside.
  3. Using a hand-held whisk, whisk the oil, mashed avocado, water, vinegar and vanilla till well combined.
  4. Whisk sugar into the avocado mixture.
  5. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients all at once and mix by hand with a ball whisk till smooth.
  6. Pour batter into greased tube pan.
  7. Bake in a preheated oven @ 175 deg.C for 45 mins.  Test with a skewer till it comes out clean.
  8. Leave cake in pan to cool for about  20 mins. before unmoulding and letting it cool completely on a wire rack, before frosting.
Frosting
  1. Mash the avocados in a mixing bowl.
  2. Sift in icing sugar and cocoa powder.
  3. Mix till well combined with a hand-held whisk.


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