Foodie

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Inside-out German Chocolate Cake

This cake was on the cover of Gourmet/March 2000 and i fell in love with it on first sight. I had to attempt to make it. The first time i followed the recipe to the 'tee' and had difficulty spreading the filling as the method of using the oven suggested by recipe made the dulce de leche too dry.

I had a request for a german chocolate cake from my sil for his boss's birthday and i remembered that i have made a german chocolate cake before but to look for the magazine was a chore as there are so many. Decided to get one from the net, found some very interesting ones but bingo i found the one i needed and the reviews that came with this recipe was so helpful. I have altered the cake recipe to 1 1/2 times as the layers were too thin and i used the method of boiling the unopened can of condensed milk in water.

The cake took its name from an American with the last name of "German." In 1852, Sam German created the mild dark baking chocolate bar for Baker's Chocolate Co. The product was named in his honor - "Baker's German's Sweet Chocolate." Most recipes use this signature chocolate but this Gourmet recipe does not and the chef used Valrhona cocoa powder and i used Nestle.

Pay attention to the assembling of the cake or else my experience of having not enough of glaze will be repeated and the decoration became a fudge.


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Ingredients:
For cake layers:
2 1/4 cups sugar
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup plus 1 1/2 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/8 cup whole milk
9 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 1/8 cup boiling-hot water

For filling:
7 oz sweetened flaked coconut
4 oz coarsely chopped pecans (1 cup)
14-oz can sweetened condensed milk
1 tablespoon vanilla

For glaze
2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
10 oz fine-quality semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
3 tablespoons light corn syrup


Special equipment:

3 (9-inch) round cake pans

Method:


Make cake layers:


Turn oven to 350°F and bake pecans in upper third of oven and coconut in lower third, stirring occasionally until golden, by then oven should be preheated.

Oil cake pans. Line bottoms of pans with rounds of parchment or wax paper.

Sift together sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl.

Whisk together whole milk, butter, whole egg, yolk, vanilla, and almond extract in another large bowl until just combined.

Beat egg mixture into flour mixture with an electric mixer on low speed, then beat on high speed 1 minute. Reduce speed to low and beat in water until just combined (batter will be thin).

Divide batter among cake pans. knock pans to remove some air bubbles and bake in upper and lower thirds of oven, switching position of pans and rotating them 180 degrees halfway through baking, until a tester comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes total.

Cool layers in pans on racks 15 minutes. Run a thin knife around edges of pans and invert layers onto racks. Carefully remove parchment or wax paper and cool layers completely.

Make filling:

Heat a tall pot of water, enough to cover the can of unopened condensed milk and let it cook for 1 1/2 hours on low heat. When done, remove from water and allow to cool before opening. Open can and pour into a bowl, stir in coconut, pecans, and vanilla , covered with foil.

Make glaze while milk is baking:

Melt butter in a 3-quart saucepan. Remove pan from heat and add chocolate and corn syrup, whisking until chocolate is melted. Transfer 1 cup glaze to a bowl, reserving remaining glaze at room temperature in pan. Chill glaze in bowl, stirring occasionally, until thickened and spreadable, about 1 hour.

Assemble cake:

Before assembling, trim and level cakes. Put 1 cake layer on a cardboard base and then on a rack set over a baking pan (to catch excess glaze).

Use your fingers to drop half of coconut filling evenly over layer and make sure that it is spread right to the edge of cake. Top with another cake layer and spread with remaining filling in same manner. Top with remaining cake layer.

Spread chilled glaze evenly over top and side of cake.

Heat reserved glaze in pan over low heat, stirring, until glossy and pourable, about 1 minute. Pour glaze evenly over top of cake, making sure it coats sides. Shake rack gently to smooth glaze. Chill cake until firm, about 1 hour.

Transfer cake to a plate.

Cooks' notes:•

Cake keeps, covered and chilled, 3 days.

Bring to room temperature before serving.


Serves

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Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Wonton Wrappers

The necessity to homemake wonton wrappers is that the store bought ones are not good eats and the urge to have a good bowl of wonton soup especially during the winters when it is cold outside, a nice hot bowl of soup is so comforting.


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Ingredients:

300g plain flour
2 eggs
1/2 tsp alkaline water (kan sui)
2-2 1/2 tsp (approximately) water



Method:


Put all the ingredients in a food processor and pulse until it resembles pea size crumble. Remove from food processor and knead until dough is smooth. Sprinkle a little tapioca flour on the table, place the dough over and flatten with rolling pin.Remove dough to a noodle-making machine and roll out dough to paper thin sheets. Fold the pastry into five layers. Dust each layer well with tapioca flour. Stamp out with round cutters or cut into squares. Stack up the wonton wrappers/skin in an airtight container

Serves
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Green Tea Ping Pei Mooncake

The main ingredient to make the ping pei (cold skin) is the 'koh fun' which is fried glutinous rice flour. After lengthy discussions and questions among friends as to how the packing of 'koh fun' looks like, it is not found in the biggest asian store here. For curiousity sake, decided to go ahead and make some from plain glutinous rice flour. The filling is tau sar and the recipe is Jo's recipe for carrot ping pei mooncake but i changed it to green tea. The skin is green and has no distinctive tea taste as i do not have green tea essence and this green tea powder that i used is from Korea and meant for drinking.



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Ingredients:

Ping Pei Skin:
160g icing sugar, sifted
25g shortening
125g water mix with 1 tsp of green tea powder, strain)
1/2 tsp salt
50g evaporated milk
110g Koh Fun (cooked glutinous flour - method for homemade is at bottom of page), sifted twice
50g cornflour, sifted twice


Paste:
1kg tau sar paste

Method:

To prepare Ping Pei skin:

Rub shortening into icing sugar until they resemble coarse breadcrumbs.

Stir green tea into icing sugar mixture and mix well with a spatula.

Add in evaporated milk, salt, Koh Fun and cornflour. Mix to a soft and smooth dough and stand it for 10 minutes.

Cook in the microwave on high 1 min at a time until dough is cooked and stir after every minute.

Let dough cool before moulding into mooncakes


To prepare mooncake paste:

Using small mooncake moulds, divide ping pei dough to 15g - 25f(depending on your preference of whether a thicker skin is desired).

Lightly flour your hands with koh fun. Knead each portion until it is not sticky

Roll into a ball .

Divide tau sar paste into 45 - 50 gm(the square mould need slightly more) Knead each portion a little and form each into a ball .

Lightly flour (using koh fun) your hands. Flatten a ping pei dough on your palm to be a 2-inch circle. Press to make the edges thinner than the central part . Place a ball of paste. Start pushing the paste against the dough . As you push the paste, the dough will start enlarging . Wrap up the mooncake. Roll into a ball .

Lightly flour the mooncake mould. Place mooncake, seam side up, in mould. Flatten mooncake to conform to shape of mould. Bang upper, lower, left and right sides of mould to dislodge the mooncake .

Repeat to shape remaining mooncakes.

Refrigerate ping pei mooncakes for at least 1 hour before serving.

HOMEMADE 'KOH FUN'

Steam the plain glutinous rice flour for 1/2 hour.

Remove and put in a microwable glass bowl which has been lined with greaseproof paper.

Microwave on high 1 minute at a time until rice is slightly brown(time depends on the amount of rice flour)

Serves
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Thursday, June 23, 2005

Apricot Jam

This jam is made with SUREJELL, a fruit pectin for homemade jams and jellies. I followed the Quick 'N Easy directions and it takes about half the time of cooked method, softer set with fresh fruit taste.


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Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups very finely chopped apricots
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
5 1/2 cups sugar
1 box SUREJELL

Method:


  1. Stir sugar into finely chopped apricots. Mix well. Let stand 10 minutes, stir occasionally.
  2. Stir pectin and 3/4 cup water in a small saucepan.(Pectin may start out lumpy.) Bring to boil on high heat, stirring constantly. Boil 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
  3. Stir pectin mixture into fruit mixture. Stir constantly until sugar is completely dissolved and no longer grainy, about three minutes.
  4. Pour into prepared containers, leaving 1/2 inch space at top for expansion during freezing; cover.
  5. Let stand at room temperature 24 hours until set.
  6. Refrigerate up to 3 weeks. Otherwise, store in freezer for up to 1 year. Thaw in refrigerator.

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Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Blueberry torte

This cake is simple but elegant and is most appropriate as a birthday cake.

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Ingredients:

A)
3 small egg yolks
110g flour
½ tsp baking soda
20g cocoa powder
60g castor sugar
70g oil
100g milk
1 tsp chocolate emulco/ paste

(B)
3 small egg whites
¼ tsp cream of tartar
60g castor sugar

Decoration:
16 fl ozs heavy whipping cream
1 16 oz can of blueberry pie filling
Simple syrup with dark rum
Toasted almond flakes



Method:

Chocolate chiffon cake:

Preheat oven at 375 deg F.

Sift flour, baking soda and cocoa powder into a mixing bowl. Add egg yolks, castor sugar, oil and milk to the dry ingredients.

Use a hand whisk to mix until just combined. Add more milk if the batter is too thick.

Using the cake mixer, whisk egg whites with cream of tartar at medium speed until formy. Add sugar and continue to whisk on high speed until soft peaks form. Turn to medium speed and whisk until stiff peaks just form.

Use a large spatula to fold 1/3 of egg whites into egg yolk mixture. Fold the egg whites until well blended. Add in the the remaining 2/3 of egg whites. Fold gently so as not to deflate the egg whites.

Pour batter into a 8 inch round cake pan. DO NOT grease your pan.

Bake at preheated oven for 40-50 minutes or until skewer inserted into centre of cake comes out clean
.
Remove cake from oven. Invert cake pan immediately on a wire rack and let cake cools completely before turning it out of the pan.

Decoration:

Whip whipping cream till stiff.

Slice chocolate chiffon cake into 3 layers.

Place one layer on a cake board and brush simple syrup over the cake.

Cover with a layer of whipped cream.

Place blueberry pie filling evenly on the cream.

Repeat the above with second layer of cake.

Lay the third layer of cake over it and brush with simple syrup.

Spread whipped cream on top and sides of cake.

Coat sides of cake with toasted almond flakes.

Pipe a ring around the edge of cake and fill the top with blueberry pie filling.

Chill for 1 hour before serving.


Serves Read More......

French Apple Tart

The apple tart is made with France's basic pastry dough - pate brisee. Literally meaning broken paste - differs from its American and English counterparts in that it is a blended dough, intended to tbe crisp and sturdy, not flaky. To achieve this texture, the dough is kneaded using a technique the French call fraisage: actually smearing the dough against the work surface to incorporate the fat. The perfect crust for both sweet and savory fillings alike. Granny smith apples are used for its tartness and firm texture but golden delicious are also very good

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Ingredients:

Pate Brisee

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
4 ozs cold butter, cut into bits
2 tbsps cold vegetable shortening
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 - 1/2 cup ice water

Filling:

2 medium size granny smith apples, peeled,slice thinly and soak with 1 tsp of lemon juice
1 cup of unsweetened apple sauce(store bought is just as good)
2 tsp fine sugar

Glaze:
1/4 cup of apricot preserves, strain and microwave for 30 seconds and add in 1 tbsp of dark rum.

Method:

Pate Brisee:

In a bowl, combine the flour, butter, shortening and slat. Blend with fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add 1/4 cup ice water, and toss until incorporated, adding more of the water, if needed, to form a soft dough.

With the heel of your hand, press batches of the dough away from you on a floured surface, smearing it about 6 inches in order to blend and smooth it completely. Form the dough into a ball, wrap it in plastic wrap, and chill for 30 minutes.

This dough freezes well, wrapped first in plastic wrap, then in aluminum foil. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months, then defrost in the refrigerator overnight.

Makes enough dough for one 10 inch tart.

To Make the tart:

Preheat the oven to 400F.

Line a 10-inch tart pan with the pastry and trim the edges. Prick with a fork to dock pastry. Chill for 30 minutes.

Spread the applesauce over the bottom of the shell.

Drain the sliced apples and wipe dry, then arrange them on top of the apple sauce in a pattern. and sprinkle with fine sugar.

Place the tart on a baking sheet and bake in the lower third of the oven for 45 minutes, or until the apples slices are brown at the edges.

Glaze the apples with glazing.

Let the tart cool on a rack.


To Make Apple Sauce:

3 Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored, and quartered
3 Fuji apples, peeled, cored, and quartered
1 cup unfiltered apple juice
2 tablespoons cognac or brandy
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

In a sealable microwave-safe container, combine apples with all other ingredients. Close lid, leaving one corner of lid open to allow steam to escape. Microwave on high for 10 minutes. Using a hand blender or potato masher, blend to desired consistency.

Chill for later use.


Serves


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Monday, June 20, 2005

Ju Her Eng Chye(Cuttlefish Salad)

This salad has only two main ingredients, the cuttlefish which is 'ju her' in hokkien, 'yau yee' in cantonese and the vegetable is water convolvulus which is 'eng chye' in hokkien, 'oong choy' in cantonese and 'kangkong' in malay. This vegetable has many names in different parts of the world, for example it can be called 'morning glory' or 'swamp cabbage' in Australia. There are two species that i am familiar with, one grows on soil and another in water. Before it is hybrid, the water kind is only available and because it was grown in water, the chinese no preference for this vegetable as it does not do good for people who suffer from rheumatism and your knees will buckle from weakness. Whatever it is, it makes the best salad and this dish is one of the most expensive one in the hawker's centre.

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Ingredients:

1 processed cuttlefish(to process a dried one refer notes below)
300 gm of young water convolvulus
2 tbsps of fragrant oil(sook yau)
1tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsps of toasted sesame seeds.

Sauce ingredients:
(Mix together)
2 tbsps Hoi sin sauce
1 tbsp hae ko(black prawn paste)
2 tsps chilly sauce
1 tsp belacan powder
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp lime juice

Method:


  1. Cut the lower end of the washed water convolvulus and tie the vegetable into a bunch.
  2. Heat a pot of water and when water comes to a boil, blanch the cuttlefish for a short while as if overcooked cuttlefish will be rubbery. Remove cuttlefish and soak in iced water.
  3. Blanch the water convolvulus and remove the whole bunch on to a cutting board.
  4. Cut the water convolvulus into 2 ins length and place onto serving plate. Drizzle with the 2 tbsp of oil and 1 tbsp of sesame oil.
  5. Cut the cuttlefish into 2 lengthwise. Slice slantwise to width of 2 ins and cut tentacles into 2 ins length too. Place on top of the water convolvulus.
  6. Pour the mixed sauce and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

NOTES

To process dried cuttlefish:

Soak cuttlefish with cold water preferably overnight until it has been reconstituted. Change the water(this water can be used as soup stock) and soak the cuttlefish with cold water which has 1 tbsp of potassium carbonate & sodium bi-carbonate solution(kan sui) added. The cuttlefish is ready when it is soft and double it's original size. At this stage the cuttlefish has to be soaked in plain cold water and change the water every 3 hours.

Serves

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Thursday, June 16, 2005

Meat Balls Ala Don

These meat balls are made of pork but this recipe applies to beef, chicken and fish and the texture is fine and crunchy(cantonese say 'song how') unlike other meat balls where the meat is not grind so fine. A dear friend introduced me to 'ACCORD' a blend of special phosphates which bind and emulsify comminuted meat. Hence it can retain moisture, flavor and juiciness of the meat protein. When cooked 'ACCORD' makes the meat emulsion softer and better adhesion and less tendency to render out. It is also very suitable for making sausages and meat loaves. Thank you Don for posting the packet of 'ACCORD' all the way from Germany and these balls are named after you.

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Ingredients:

500 gm lean pork/lean beef/chicken/fish

Seasoning:

1 1/2 tbsp soya sauce
1/2 tsp white pepper
1 tsp sugar
1 egg white
1 tbsp sesame oil
1/4 tsp 'ACCORD'

Mix together:

1 tsp fine salt
1 tbsp cornflour/tapioca flour
1 tbsp water


Method:

  1. Mince the meat in a food processor until really fine almost like a paste.
  2. Transfer processed meat to the cake mixer and use the paddle, beat the meat for 10 seconds, then add in the seasonings. Beat the meat again until seasonings are well blended.
  3. Add in the salt, cornflour/tapioca flour and water mixture and beat until the meat feels spongy
  4. Heat a small pot of water. Make balls by taking a small amount of paste in your hand and squeeze the paste through the thumb and index finger to form balls. Remove ball with a spoon and put ball straight into the boiling water. Balls are cooked when they float to the top.
  5. Balls are now ready to eat as they are or add into noodle soup. The water used for cooking the balls can be used as stock.
    Serves
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Monday, June 13, 2005

Char Siew Pau

Making these paus are very easy with the ready mixed and economical as pau flour is quite expensive. The result is just as good as those long processed yeast dough paus.

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Ingredients:


For the Dough:
1 packet of pau ready mixed
1 cup milk/water
1/2 cup sugar

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For the filling:

285g char siew, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped
1 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
2 tbsp oil
1 tbsp flour

Seasoning:
3 tsp light soy sauce
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp monosodium glutamate
2 tsp sesame oil
1/8 tsp pepper
2 tbsp oyster sauce
4 to 5 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp water


Method:
  1. Mix the ingredients for the dough and knead until smooth and elastic. Leave in bowl covered with a damp cloth for 15 minutes.
  2. Heat oil and fry the garlic, add in the flour and stir until flour is cooked.
  3. Add the char siew and the seasonings.
  4. Lastly add in the coriander leaves and sesame seeds and put in refrigerator to cool.
  5. Divide dough into 24 pieces and roll each piece into a ball.
  6. Press to flatten and place 1 tsp of filling in the centre. Seal by pleating the edges.(If sealing is not properly done, the pau will open when it is steamed).
  7. Put pau on a sqare piece of greaseproof paper and leave for 10 minutes in a warm place.
  8. Steam over rapidly boiling water which has 2 tbsp of vinegar added for 10 minutes.(Do not lift lid whilst steaming)
  9. Serve hot.

NOTES:

When wrapping the pau, make sure that the flatten dough is as big as possible and that the oil or sauce of filling does not touch the edges of the circle. If the dough feels dry, brush water at the edges before pleating. this will also ensure the sealing will not open. The dough being big, gives it more dough on the top of pau as you pleat and that will certainly give you a SMILING pau.







Serves Read More......

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Pizza Pot Pie

This dish is made with pizza ingredients and it is not made in the pizza conventional method but the pot pie way, in a dish.

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Ingredients:

Pizza Crust Dough:

2 1/4 cups bread flour
3/4 cup water
1 tbsp oil
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp milk powder
1 tsp instant yeast

Filling:

8 ozs mozzarella cheese
4 cups of simple tomato sauce(recipe is at bottom of page)
8 ozs button white mushroom
8 ozs ham or sausage

Utensil:

4 ovenproof cereal bowls


Method:
  1. Mix all the ingredients for the pizza crust dough and knead until smooth and elastic. Oil the dough and leave in a covered bowl to proof until double.
  2. While the dough is proofing, prepare the simple tomato sauce, cut or shredd the mozzarella cheese, clean mushrooms with a damp kitchen towel and cut ham or sausage into bite size.
  3. Grease the cereal bowls and line with the mozzarella cheese, add in the mushrooms and ham/sausage and top with the simple tomato sauce.
  4. When the pizza crust dough has doubled it's size, punch down and divide into 4 portions and make them into balls. Roll ball out to a size 1/2 inch to 1 inch bigger than the cereal bowl. Cover the bowl with the dough.
  5. Repeat with the other 3 balls and leave to proof. In the mean time, preheat oven at 425 f.

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6. Put in hot oven and bake for 15 - 20 minutes until dough is brown.



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7. Remove from oven and flip pizza crust on to serving plate and remove the cereal bowl.


Simple Tomato Sauce:

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 small onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 stalk celery, chopped

1 carrot, chopped

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 (32-ounce) cans crushed tomatoes

2 dried bay leaves

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, optional


In a large casserole pot, heat oil over medium high heat.

Add onion and garlic and saute until soft and translucent, about 5 to 10 minutes.

Add celery and carrots and season with salt and pepper.

Saute until all the vegetables are soft, about 5 to 10 minutes.

Add tomatoes and bay leaves and simmer uncovered on low heat for 1 hour or until thick.

Remove bay leaves and check for seasoning. If sauce still tastes acidic, add unsalted butter, 1 tablespoon at a time to round out the flavors.


Serves

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Saturday, June 11, 2005

Mexican Torlilla Roll

There are two types of tortillas, one is made with corn and the other made with flour. If it is not rolled up but wrapped, it would be a burrito which is just as delicious. This dish is a potluck pleaser.

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Ingredients:

12 oz. cream cheese (1-1/2 blocks) softened to room temperature
3 green onions, chopped fine (just the green part)
8 carrots shredded fine
1 16 oz can of Spicy Jalalpeno Refried Beans
10 huge leaves of green leaf lettuce
10 flour tortillas (burrito sized)
10 slices turkey ham (rectangular shaped package)

toothpicks to seal the tortilla flaps
1 bowl of picante sauce for dipping


Method:

Place cream cheese, refried beans in large bowl. Blend well until cream cheese lumps have been blended in. Add green onions and blend well. Allow to sit for 30 minutes so the flavors will marinate.

Then, take about 3 tablespoons of mixture and spread in center of tortilla. Spread shredded carrot and top with one slice of turkey ham lengthwise and a piece of lettuce onto the tortilla. Place it on the tortilla edge nearest to you and roll firmly. If the mixture is coming out of the sides you are rolling too tightly.

Place roll in a dry container with an airtight seal.


Repeat this process with the remaining 9 tortilla's.

Seal container and place in refrigerator until ready to serve.


Take a roll, discard the ends that have no filling. Make slices about the width of your finger. You can get 10 roll-ups from each tortilla. As you cut them insert a toothpick at the tortilla flap to keep the pinwheel together.

Place on a serving tray with a bowl of picante sauce as a dip.

Notes:

Here are some tips.

For more spice, add more jalapenos.

Picante sauce comes in a variety of hot or mild, use the kind you like. Do not use the "chunky" Picante sauce because the pickled peppers in the sauce interfere with the flavor of the fresh ones.

Substitution:

Honey ham or turkey will work fine.

Multi-colored toothpicks make a festive presentation during any season of the year.



Serves Read More......

Peasant Bak Chang

I have to call this bak chang peasant because of the limited amount of ingredients. This type of filling brings back fond memories as these type of chang is sold everyday and not on special occasion like the 5th day of the 5th moon festival.

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Ingredients:

1000g glutinous rice, soaked overnight then drained, add 2 tsp salt and 1/4 cup oil.
Bamboo leaves and raffia string for wrapping

Filling:

400g belly pork (remove skin) or deboned chicken meat
150g dried mushrooms
400 g split green peas - soak overnight, drain , add a 1 tsp salt and 3 tbsp of oil.

Seasoning:

For the Pork:

1 tbsp Chinese Five Spice powder
1 tbsp of light soya sauce
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tbsp rice wine
2-3 tbsp oil

For the mushrooms:

1 tbsp light soya sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tbsp oil

Method:



Soak bamboo leaves in boiling water overnight. Clean and wipe the leaves with a damp cloth.

Marinate pork or chicken meat with seasoning.

Marinate mushrooms with seasoning.

Take two bamboo leaves, make them overlap slightly and fold into a conical shape. Put 1 tbsp rice into the funnel base. Add 1 tbsp of split green pea, a piece of pork and mushroom. Cover with some more rice. Fold leaves over rice to form a triangular prism. Tie with raffia string.

Boil a large pot of water and add 2-3 tsp salt. Drop the bundles of dumplings in and boil for 1 1/2 - 2 hours over medium slow fire. Top constantly with boiling water to maintain level of water at all times.

When cooked, remove the dumplings and hang to dry.

Serves
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Mee Siam

Mee Siam is cooked with rice vermicelli or meehoon although it is called mee. Siam is the ancient name for Thailand where their cuisine is noted to be spicy, sourish and sweet. This dish has all these tastes, that's how the name derived.

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Ingredients:

250g rice vermicelli or meehoon, soaked for five minutes and drained
200g beansprouts, remove root tips
250g prawns
2 pieces fried beancurd (tau kwa), sliced
100g chives, cut into 4cm-5cm lengths
1/4 cup oil
1 tbsp of assam jawa, add 1/2 cup warm water, squeeze and strain
2 cups of water(for cooking the prawns)

Pound:
3 cloves garlic
6 shallots
1 tbsp preserved soya beans (tau cheong)
50g dried prawns
12 dried chillies, soaked
2 pieces buah keras(candlenuts)
1 stalk serai (lemon grass) - sliced
1 sq inch belachan


Seasoning:

1 tsp sugar or to taste
1 tsp chicken stock granules
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tbsp Nampla (fish sauce)

Garnishing:

Chinese celery (kan choy) chopped
2 limes, cut into wedges
2 hard-boiled eggs, sliced
1 red chilly, sliced
Shallot crisps


Method:

Bring the 2 cups of water to the boil and add in the prawns, remove prawns as soon as they are cooked and put them in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. When cooled, peel the prawns and leave aside for garnishing.

Heat oil in a wok and stir-fry ground ingredients until fragrant. Add tamarind juice and 1 cup of stock from cooking the prawns. then bring to a boil and simmer for five minutes.

Add meehoon and stir-fry. Mix in beancurd slices and toss the meehoon well. Add seasoning and a squeeze of lime juice. Lastly add in the beansprouts and the chives toss until breansprouts and chives are just limp.

Dish mee siam onto platter. Garnish before serving.

Serves
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Friday, June 10, 2005

Wheat Okara Bread

This recipe is for 1 1/2 lb loaf and i have scaled it down to fit my 1 lb loaf pan. The okara is left over residue of soya bean after making soya milk from the soya milk maker.

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Ingredients:

3 cups unbleached wheat flour
1 tablespoon salt
1 cup warm water
1 tablespoon sugar (honey)
3/4 cup powdered milk
one egg, beaten
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter or margarine
2 teaspoons instant yeast
1 cup of steamed soybean pulp, cooled (Okara)


Method:


Mix flour and salt and set aside.

In a bowl mix water, sweetener, milk, egg, pour into bread machine.

Gently spoon in the flour mix.

Cut up the fat and put on top, put the yeast on the layer. Spoon on the okara layer.

Use the medium crust setting if you have one, not dark crust.

The added soy does darken the crust, but it makes the bread slightly lighter, balances the wheat protein and gives a delicious flavor


Serves
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Cream Cheese Bun

This recipe was translated by Florence from Japanese. Thank you Florence. These buns remain soft overnight. I did replace clear maltose syrup with light corn syrup and i glazed the buns with egg wash.

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Ingredients:
184g bread flour
46g cake flour
3g yeast
12g castor sugar
4g salt
23g clear maltose syrup
18g egg yolk
35g butter
138ml milk

Method:

1. Mix all ingredients to form an elastic dough and prove in a greased mixing bowl for 60 minutes.

2. Knead the dough to release the air in it and prove for 30 minutes.

3. Divide dough into 8 equal pieces of 50g each and one piece of 60g. Rest the dough for 15 minutes. The 60g dough piece is used to make the plait that encircle the cheese-pan.

4. Shape dough and wrap in the filling (refer http://www001.upp.so-net.ne.jp/e-pan/cheesecream/cheescream.htm for the shaping process). Dust top of bread with some bread flour. Prove for 45 minutes.

5. Bake at 210C for 10 minutes and then 190C till golden brown.



Cream Cheese Filling:

30g castor sugar
100g cream cheese
1 egg lightly beaten
18g cake flour
100ml warm milk
1 - 2 tsp lemon juice (adjust amount according to your preference)
10g butter

Method:

1. Cream cheese and sugar till a smooth paste is formed.

2. Add in lightly beaten egg 1/3 at a time and mix well before adding the next portion.

3. Stir in the sieved flour.

4. Add in the warm milk and mix well.

5. Microwave cheese mixture for 2 minutes on HIGH and stir it. After stirring it, send it back to the microwave for 2 minutes on HIGH again. Blend well till you get a smooth paste.

6. Stir in the lemon juice and butter. Send it to chill in the refrigerator and roll slightly harden cheese paste into 35g balls to be used as filling


Serves
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Thursday, June 09, 2005

Prawn Mee

The name of this dish is called prawn mee but meehoon is also very good with this soup. In Kuala Lumpur this soup noodle is called 'mee yoke' and in Penang and Northern part of Malaysia it would be called 'Hokkien Mee'

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Ingredients:

For the stock:

1 kg pork neck bones
500g lean pork
600g prawns
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp oil
500ml water, 4 litres water
50–75g rock sugar
1 tbsp salt or to taste

600g fresh yellow noodles
300g rice vermicelli, soaked until soft then drained
250g bean sprouts
200g water convolvulus, plucked into neat sections
Some shallot crisps

Chilli oil:

4–5 tbsp chilli paste (cili boh)
6 shallots pounded
3 cloves garlic pounded
4–5 tbsp oil
1 tsp salt

Method:
Put neck bones and water into a pressure cooker and cook uncovered until scum appears and skim off the impurities. Strain the soup and wash the bones in cold running water until no sign of impurities, then return soup and bones to pressure cooker, cover and cook for 30 mins.
Release the pressure and open cover to add lean pork. Cook until meat is just cooked through. Remove and slice the meat thinly , put aside for use as garnishing.
Using the 500ml water, cook the prawns until cooked. Strain stock and add to main stock, leave cooked prawns in iced water to stop the cooking. Shell the prawns and leave aside for garnishing.
Heat up 3 tbsp of oil and fry the prawn shells until very fragrant. Blend the fried prawn shells in a food processor until fine and using a piece of muslin cloth, tie the prawn shells in and add to main stock. Bring the main stock to the boil and then simmer for 45 minutes. Strain the soup , add rock sugar and salt and bring to a boil to dissolve sugar.
Heat 4–5 tablespoons of oil and fry pounded shallots, garlic and chilli paste until aromatic. Dish out and set aside for use as chilli oil and paste.

To serve, put noodles, rice vermicelli, bean sprouts and water convolvulus into a noodle strainer. Scald in a pot of boiling hot water for a minute then drain off excess water. Place into soup bowls. Top up with the main stock and sliced pork, chilli oil, chilli paste and shallot crisps.


Serves
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Dried Pork - Long Yoke/Bak Kwa

This dried pork is traditionally dried(long in cantonese) in the sun but i have used the oven to dry the meat. Ground pork is used for this recipe but there are recipes where the pork is sliced very thinly. I have experimented with quite a number of meat but found that pork is the tastiest. Chicken tastes good too and use the thigh meat as it has considerable amount of fat and fat plays an important part, it should be 20% fat and 80% lean to achieve a softer finished product.



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Ingredients:
1 kg ground pork

Marinate:

1 1/2 tbsp fish sauce
1 1/2 tbsp soya sauce
175 - 200 gm sugar
1/8 tsp 5 spiced powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
1/2 tsp kam cho(licorice) powder
1/2 tsp white pepper
1 tsp msg(optional)
1 tbsp oil
2 tbsp rose wine
a big drop of red food coloring


Method:




  1. Season ground pork with the marinate and leave in the fridge overnight or at least 4 hours.(marinating is more flavorful but so often i have made without marinating and the result is just as good.
  2. Turn oven to 175 F.
  3. Oil the under side of baking sheet 17" x 12", put a chinese bowl of marinated pork on baking sheet and try to spread meat as thinly as possible to cover the whole sheet.
  4. Bake in oven for 10 mins or until firm to the touch.
  5. Remove from oven and using a scissor cut meat into pieces.
  6. Repeat (3) to (5)
  7. Meat is now ready for grilling or wrapped in foil and freeze until needed.



Serves
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Roti Canai with Dhall Char

This type of bread is a breakfast treat and is readily available at dawn in malaysia and it is served with dhall char. They can be served for lunch too with a more hearty accompaniment like a meat curry. The bread is usually plain but eggs or sardine can be added to make it more substantial.
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Ingredients:

400g plain flour, sifted
1/2 tsp salt
20g sugar
40g margarine
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup water
Oil or ghee for greasing and cooking

Method:

Put flour, salt and sugar in a mixing bowl. Rub in margarine and mix egg and the rest of the ingredients well to form a soft dough. Leave to rest for 20-30 minutes.

Divide dough into 10 pieces. Roll into balls and rub oil or margarine lightly over each ball. Keep the balls in a container and leave aside.

Grease a marble slab. Press and flatten the balls of dough with your palm on the slab. Use your fingers to make each ball very thin. Twirl the flattened dough until it becomes thin. Fold the sides to the centre.

Flatten the dough again.Place on a hot griddle and cook slowly over a low heat. Turn over dough and spread more oil when needed to brown both sides of the roti.

Recipe source:  The Kuali
DHALL CHAR

Ingredients


300 g Chicken cut into small pieces
175g dhall, washed and soaked

(A):
3 green chillies
6 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp salt
4 cups water

(B):
2 dried chillies, pounded
1.5cm piece ginger, finely diced
1 big onion, finely diced
2 sprigs curry leaves
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
3 tomatoes, quartered
2 potatoes, quartered
1 1/2 cups general santan
1 cup assam jawa juice
1/2 cup pati santan
salt to taste
a pinch of Asafoetida powder(optional)


Method

Boil dhall with (A) till soft and cooked.
Heat a deep saucepan with oil. Saute chicken pieces until they are brown. Remove from saucepan.
Saute (B). add more if necessary, until fragrant.
Add in potatoes and the sauted chicken, mix in one cup santan and bring to a boil.
Add in the cooked dhall and the rest of the santan and assam jawa juice.
Simmer till potatoes and chicken are soft.
Add the tomatoes and the pati santan. Bring to a boil and cook till gravy is thick.
Add salt and a pinch of Asafoetida powder(if using) for better fragrance and taste.


Serves
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Monday, June 06, 2005

Nasi Lemak

This dish is a very popular breakfast meal in malaysia. Traditionally the rice and accompaniments are wrapped in banana leaves and the accompaniments are simple with just Sambal Ikan bilis, hard boil egg and slices of cucumber. Nowadays, city folks are affluent and the accompaniments are limitless. to mention a few, beef or chicken rendang, fried chicken, sambal sotong/kerang(cockles). As this meal was our dinner i had to prepare it more substantially so i cooked sambal sotong and fried chicken besides the usual accompaniments.

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Ingredients:
(A)
300 gm fragrant jasmine rice, washed
450 ml coconut milk
1 tsp salt
5 thin slices of ginger
1/4 of an onion, sliced thinly

4 tbsp oil
300 gm of fresh sotong, clean and cut into bite size
1 big onion
1 tsp asam jawa(tamarind) mixed with 2 tbsp water, squeeze and strain
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt to taste

Sambal(pounded)

5 dried chillies, soaked
3 red chillies
6 shallots
2 pips garlic
1 stalk serai(lemongrass) sliced
1 tsp belachan powder

Accompaniments

Fried Chicken
3 hard boiled eggs, halved
1 cucumber, sliced
Fried peanuts


Method:


  1. Put all ingredients (A) into a steaming tray and steam overe high heat until rice is cooked and dry. Stand for 15 minutes before fluffing up with fork or chopsticks.
  2. Heat oil and saute pounded ingredients until fragrant and oil is separated from the sambal. Add in the sliced onions and cook until onions are soft. Add in the asam jawa juice, sugar and salt to taste. Lastly add in the sotong and saute sotong until cooked and this will be a short while as sotong cooks very fast. They are cooked when they are curled.
  3. Dish out and serve.

Notes:

I like to fry the ikan bilis in the microwave as it is easy and it will not stench the whole house.

Wash the ikan bilis and drain dry with a kitchen towel. Put into a plate and mix with 1 tsp of cooking oil(it does not require alot of oil to get it crispy). Microwave on high for 2 mins the first time, stir and microwave for a minute at a time until the degree of crispiness desired. Sprinkle with salt.

The peanuts can be cooked in the microwave or the oven without oil but i prefer to fry the peanuts in oil as it tasted better. sprinkle with salt when it is still hot.

Replaced the sotong with fried ikan bilis in the sambal which is authentically right.

Serves

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Friday, June 03, 2005

Roti Jala With Chicken Curry

It is actually a lacy crepe and is eaten with curry. I have made Chicken curry to go with it.


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Ingredients:

(A)

12 fl oz milk
2 eggs
pinch of salt
1 tbsp oil

(B)

8 ozs plain flour

Utensil:

Non-stick frying pan or electric skillet
Lacy crepe maker

Method:


  1. Combine (A) in a bowl and beat until well blended.
  2. Sift flour into a mixing bowl. Add egg mixture in centre of flour and stir till batter is smooth. Strain batter through a fine sieve to remove lumps. Set aside for 15 minutes.
  3. Lightly heat a non-stick frying pan or skillet. Grease lightly with oil and run the batter in a lacy pattern into the pan from the lacy crepe maker. Cook till batter changes colour and fold crepe whilst still in pan.
  4. Repeat until all the batter is used up. Place folded pancakes on top of one another and cover with a tea towel or cling wrap to prevent drying.
  5. Serve hot or cold with Chicken Curry.

CHICKEN CURRY

Ingredients:

3 1/2 lb chicken, cut into pieces

(A)

10 cloves garlic

1 thumb size piece ginger

1/4 thumb size piece tumeric

2 tbsp curry powder mixed with 4 tbsp water

1 tsp salt

8 fl oz coconut milk

(B)

1 heaped tbsp cumin seeds or

3/4 tbsp cumin powder

1 heaped tbsp poppy seeds

8 buah keras

4 fl oz oil

10 ozs shallots, thinly sliced

8 - 10 dried chillies, soaked and grind to a paste

1 stalk curry leaves

Seasonings:

3/4 - 1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp msg

METHOD:

  1. Pound (A) to a fine paste
  2. Season chicken with (A), salt, and leave for 1 hour.
  3. Pound (B) to a fine paste and mix with the coconut milk.
  4. Heat oil and fry 3/4 of the sliced shallots till light golden brown. Lower heat, add chilly paste, curry leaves and fry till turns red.
  5. Add chicken, stir well, reduce heat to moderate and cook for 1/2 hour with lid on. Do not uncover whilst the chicken is cooking.
  6. Remove the lid, add the rest of the sliced shallots, salt for seasoning and the coconut milk mixture. Stir, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until chicken is tender.
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Tofu Fah

This dessert is very versatile as it can be served warm or cold and the degree of sweetness to each it's own. I personally like it hot, hot so i would microwave my bowl of tofu fah for 2 mins on high.

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Ingredients:

240 gm soya beans
2 liters of water
1 1/2 tsp of gypsum powder
2 level tbsp of cornflour
1/2 cup of warm water


Method:



  1. Soak soya beans using cold water for 5 to 8 hrs and if with hot water 3 to 5 hrs.
  2. Liquidfy the soya beans with 2 liters of water and pass through a cloth bag.
  3. Use a 8 qt stainless pot with heavy bottom, cook the soya milk, stirring all the time, when it comes to full boil, let foam rise to top of pot and quickly remove from fire. Remove the foam and return to fire and let it foam up another 2 more times.
  4. Before the third foam, dilute the gypsum powder in the warm water and stir in the cornstarch.
  5. After the third foam, remove/turn of fire and slowly stir in the cornstarch and gypsum mixture and cover pot with kitchen towel, then the lid.
  6. Let the tofu fah to set and do not open lid, at least for the first 15 minutes. The longer you let the tofu fah to set the firmer the texture.
  7. Serve hot or cold with Gingered syrup.

Gingered Syrup:

Cook 1 cup sugar with 1/2 cup water and a few slices of ginger(about 8 - 10) until sugar dissolves and let it cook down abit until syrupy.

Strain to remove ginger slices.

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Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Assam Tumis Fish

Assam is the term used for a sour spicy sauce. If it is a thicker sauce it is called 'Assam Tumis'and if it is more gravy it is called 'Assam Pedas' where addition condiments like 'bunga kantan and daun kesum' are added to the gravy. Any fresh fish can be used for this dish and i have used the tail end of the whole salmon. I have added some peas and corn as garnishes.


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Ingredients:

A piece of salmon about 1 lb
1 tbsp of peas
1 tbsp of corn kernels

Sambal Tumis:
(A)
7 shallots
10 dried chillies(cut into small pieces and soak in hot water)
1 clove garlic
1 stalk serai
1/2 tbsp shrimp paste(toasted)
2 buah keras

(B)
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
Pinch of msg
1 tbsp tamarind with 2 fl ozs water, squeezed and strained

3 tbsp oil
1/2 cup water


Method:

  1. Grind (A) to a paste.
  2. In a big microwavable bowl, pour in the oil and the ground paste. Microwave on high for 2 mins, stir and then 1 min at a time until fragrant and oil separates.
  3. Transfer sambal to a wok, add the fish, tamarind and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a boil and lower heat to simmering. Cover wok and simmer fish until cooked through . Remove cover and cook sambal until thick
  4. Add sugar, salt and msg to taste.
  5. Lastly add peas and corn.
  6. Serve hot.


Serves

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Siew Pak Choy with Oyster Sauce

For my dinners, a green leafy vegetable dish is a must and 'yow choy' is always one of the dishes. Garlic oil is used, so i have a huge bowl of garlic oil ever ready .



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Ingredients:
3 big stalks of Shanghai Siew Pak Choy(cut and wash
3 tbsp of garlic oil (how to make a bowl of garlic oil)
3 tbsp of oyster sauce


Method:

Arrange washed vegetables on a microwavable dish, the leaves in the center and the stalks around the sides of dish.
Pour in garlic oil
Microwave on high covered with splatter or cling wrap (leave a vent) for 3 1/2 mins for crunchy vegetables and if you like softer vegetables, microwave another 1/2 min.
Add oyster sauce before serving.

To make garlic oil:

In a microwavable bowl, put in 1/4 cup of chopped/minced garlic and 1/2 cup of cooking oil.

Microwave on high for 1 minute at a time, stir every minute and continue to microwave until garlic is slightly brown. The garlic will continue to brown. (This process should not be more than 3 minutes if you are having a microwave with 1000 - 1300 watts. Do no leave to answer the phone or door, watch the color of the garlic and open door of microwave if you find that they are slightly brown.)

Cool and store in jar.


Serves

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Steamed Ground Pork with Tung Choy

This dish is the easiest and most convenient as it is steamed on top of rice in the rice cooker so no washing of cooking utensils is needed.

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Ingredients:
8 ozs of ground/minced pork
3 tbsp of tung choy(washed)
2 tbsp of soya sauce
1 tsp of sugar
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tbsp of tapioca flour
a pinch of msg(optional)
1 tbsp of sesame oil


Method:
Mix all the ingredients in a slightly deep plate that fits the rice cooker.
When rice is going to be cooked, place plate on top of rice and let the steam of the rice cook the meat.



Notes:

Besides tung choy, a variety of ingredients can be substituted such as char choy, shitake mushrooms, dried squid, eggs, mui choy or tai tau choy. When using eggs, there are 2 versions, one has water added to the eggs to give a tofu texture and the other has no water added but maybe salted egg and tapioca flour is not used.
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