Archive for October, 2010

Candied Orange Slices

October 31, 2010 10 comments

I love the way candied orange look. Their flesh are translucent, and the glossy sheen just seems to catch any light coming their way.

They are supposedly quite easy to make too. You just have to boil, then simmer them in sugared water.

I guess u can pretty much use them wherever you like.

I placed mine on a cake and watched it transform from boring to ravishing!

But while these candied orange are decorational, i have to be brutally honest. They don’t taste that great after all.

Or maybe it’s just mine. I think i might have tried candied orange slices before once or twice in some upscale restaurants. If my memory serves me right, they are supposed to be crunchy, relatively hard and sweet. I guess it might have been like eating on a thin piece of hard candy.

Sadly, my batch didn’t really turn out that way. They were hard and candy-like all right, but they were bitter. I suspect it might have been the way they were prepared.

For a whole orange, i boiled 1/2 cup sugar with some water till they dissolve. I dumped the sliced oranges in and basically just let them simmer till the sugar water mixture turned thick and syrupy.

I let them cool for quite a bit before fishing them out with a pair of chopsticks and laid them on a piece of parchment.

The whole process took barely half an hour. Really, i thought these steps were too quick and easy to make candied oranges. I mean, something’s gotta be done to take away the bitterness of the pit right?

Did i not cook it long enough?

or was there insufficient sugar?

Am i even using the right oranges?

Anyways, i am not providing a link up, because this recipe didn’t really work. Hopefully it will save you from repeating the same mistakes.

So, until i found a better way to make candied oranges, these shall just be props to my cakes.

Props that are conveniently flicked aside while i dive into my cake.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , ,

12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies, Week #5 Mr. Meringue Frosty

October 29, 2010 28 comments

Meringue ghosts seem to be popular now that halloween is around the corner. I’ve seen them on cupcakes, whole cakes, or even as cookies. It comes as pretty much a no-brainer for me to make meringue snowmen for 12 Weeks Of Christmas Cookies. I mean, since they are both supposedly white anyways.

Meet Mr. Frosty. He is every bit as his ghostly cousin in compositiion, except maybe less spooky.

The thing i like about meringue cookies is that they only need two ingredients. Egg whites and sugar. That’s probably something every household has on hands at all times. There is probably no need for that run to the store to get some last minute ingredients.

These said egg whites and sugar are whipped senseless before they are sent to bake in an oven. As many of you would have known, something magical happens when u whip these egg whites. They form into a voluminous mass which u can easily coax to form whatever u fancy.

Like a melted Mr.Frosty perhaps,

LOL, that’s probably Frosty’s girlfriend panicking over her boyfriend.

U can also pipe them into kisses with a star shaped nozzle.

And they take colour quite easily too! My kisses are streaked with the festive green and red.

How long you bake it depends on your personal preference. I like mine with a crisp outer shell, with a gooey surprise centre. So its a relatively quick bake for me.

Anyways,  having raved about the wonders of meringue cookies , there is also one setback.

With sugar as its primary ingredients, these cookies are pretty much on the sweeter side, something that the dentist will probably tsked u for eating, or something that doctors wouldn’t touch with a pole.

But then again, what’s Christmas without a bit of an indulgence? 🙂

Recipe by me.

3 egg whites

150 grams sugar

1. Double boil egg whites till hot to the touch

2. Whip the egg whites senseless till it forms stiff peaks

3. Shape them into your desired shapes

4. Bake them at a low temperature oven ( How long u bake them depends on how big your cookies are and how crisp u want them to be). For Mr Frosty i baked mine at 140 degree C ( Not F!) for 40 minutes.

Geez, i dont think i am cut out to be a recipe writer. This so doesnt sound convincing. In fact, it is sounding a wee bit shady. But it worked for me. Nevertheless, please feel free to use other meringue cookies recipe!

Categories: Cookies Tags: , ,

Chiffon Complication

October 28, 2010 16 comments

Can anyone tell me,

Why does my chiffon tops always crack?

Or why does the said top fold and bunch up upon itself and creat a dense layer on the top of the cake?

I can pretty much overlook the crack. But the inconsistency in the texture of the cake (Heavy top), buggs me till no end.

It’s not the recipe for sure, because this happens to most of the chiffons recipes i attempt.

Of course the cake can be flipped and reversed, and the denser layer now gets hidden below.

So i can hide the failures of this cake, to get somewhat decent shots.

But that doesnt erase the fact this is a letdown. Or that i am a poor baker. *whimper*

Can someone pls help me shed some light into this mystery? pretty please?

Categories: Cakes Tags: , ,

Lil’ Miss Weird

October 26, 2010 6 comments

What an odd looking dessert.

It’s green, with a dark red belly, and a head of white.

It’s not a muffin, nor a cupcake.

Whoops, where are my manners, let me get you guys acquainted.

Meet Matcha Sponge Cake.

She sandwiches Red Bean Mousse

And she sports a head of buttercream with a sprinkle of shredded white chocolate.

She tastes pretty good 🙂

Recipe from Add a little love (Thanks for sharing!)


Green tea cake base
4 eggs
1 cup cake flour
2 tbsp green tea powder
2/3 cup icing sugar
1/2 tbsp baking powder
1/3 tsp salt
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk
1/2 tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cream of tartar

Red bean mousse
1 cup red bean paste
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup sour cream
1 cup whipping cream
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp gelatin

Cake topping
1 mango
1 kiwi
few cherries, and 1 strawberry
5 tbsp boiling water
1/2 tbsp gelatin
1 tbsp sugar

The first thing to do is to preheat the oven 325F.

Green Tea Cake Base
A. Mix cake flour, green tea powder, 1/3 cup icing sugar ( another 1/3 saved for the egg white), baking powder, salt.
B. Shift through
C. Add vegetable oil, milk, vanilla extract, and egg yolks.
D. Mix well

E. Put egg white in a different bowl.
F. Beat for one minute, add the rest of 1/3 cup icing sugar, and cream of tartar.
G. Beat for few more minute
H. It is ready when the egg white does not move when put the bowl upside down.

Q. Remove the crust on the top of the cake. I over baked the cake, it is tough on the top. Normally you don’t have to remove it.
R. Use four tooth picks to center each side of the cake.
S. Cut along the tooth picks making sure that the cake is evenly cut into two slices. Same method can be used to cut three layers as well.
T. Put the bottom layer back into the baking pan. Surround it with new parchment paper.

When working with the gelatin, soak it in the water for 3 minutes, heat it up in a microwave for 1 minute. Let it sit for 3 minutes, the gelatin water will become completely clear as shown on the bottom right.

U. Beat the whipping cream until stiff.
V. Mix red bean paste, milk, sour cream, and clear gelatin water. Mix well, and then fold in the whipped cream.
W. Pour 1/3 of the red bean mix onto the first layer of the cake.
X. Drop the second layer cake, gently press it down. Then pour the rest of the red bean mix. Leave it in the fridge at least for 5 hours.

Categories: Cakes Tags: , ,

Watermelon Chiffon Pie

October 24, 2010 13 comments

I dont know if any of you would agree with me, but for me, pie making is generally laborious. As if all that mixing chilling, rolling and (sometimes) pre-baking pie dough isn’t enough, there is still all that fancy filling to prepare.

I guess there are steps in which you can prepare before hand, but for this pie, i was feeling a lil too ambitious.

I just had to make my own graham cracker crumbs for my pie, the actual pie crust and the filling, on the SAME day. And when it came to the final step of popping the pie into the refrigerator, i was quite sure that i needed the chilling more than that pie.

I’ve never had chiffon pies before, so i don’t really have a standard. But as far as this goes, it is pretty delightful. Instead of a thick creamy filling that accompanies most pies, this has a light, fluffy, mousse-like filling.

Did i mention that this was watermelon flavoured?

Apparently, slicing across a watermelon is not as easy as it looks, and it definitely justified my take on “laborious” in this pie making.

Whoops, sorry for the slightly wobbly and weather beaten filling in this pic. I was kinda taking my time taking the first few uncut shots of this pie under the sun, which happens to be the best lighting prop. Ever.

Anyways, as you can see Lil Miss Maintenance is definitely not liking the sun too much. No biggie, just pop her back into the fridge, and she’ll be fine 🙂

A lil side note, the filling recipe makes waaaay too much. I poured the remaining into a mini cup.

Or a lot of mini cups. See when i said  “Waaaaaay too much”? LOL

I am not complaining though. They are pretty handy to grab off the fridge!

Recipe from Nancy at (Thanks for Sharingg!)



10 10





Prep Time: 20 mins 

Total Time: 4 1/2 hrs

  1. 1 Place a medium sized bowl and a set of beaters in the refrigerator to chill.
  2. 2 Bake pie crust according to directions and let cool; Refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. 3 Combine the watermelon and granulated sugar in a very large bowl; using a potato masher, mash until the mixture is quite liquid; set aside for 15 minutes.
  4. 4 After 15 minutes, drain the mixture through a strainer, reserving almost 2 ¾ cups of the watermelon juice and then discard pulp and seeds.
  5. 5 Put ¼ cup of the juice in a medium size bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over it; set aside for 3 to 4 minutes to dissolve.
  6. 6 Heat ½ cup of the juice in a small saucepan over medium heat (or in the microwave) to a near boil; whisk the hot juice into the dissolved gelatin.
  7. 7 Pour the remaining 2 cups watermelon juice into a large bowl an stir in the gelatin-watermelon juice mixture; stir in the lime juice; place in refrigerator.
  8. 8 Using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites in a medium size bowl until stiff peaks form; set aside; clean and dry beaters;
  9. 9 Using the chilled medium-size bowl and chilled beaters, beat the heavy cream with the mixer until it holds soft peaks; add the confectioners? sugar and beat until smooth and stiff but not grainy; refrigerate.
  10. 10 When the watermelon juice mixture starts to firm up, add about one-quarter of the whipped cream and beat with the electric mixer until smooth.
  11. 11 Add the beaten egg whites and remaining whipped cream and gently fold them in with a large rubber spatula; if necessary, use a whisk-very briefly- to smooth the mixture and break up any large globs of whites or whipped cream;
  12. 12 Pour the filling into the cooled pie shell; shake to settle; cover with loosely tented aluminum foil and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
  13. 13 To serve, garnish each slice with a dusting of confections? sugar, and then add a dollop of whipped cream, if desired.
Categories: Pastries Tags: , ,

12 Weeks of Christmas, Week #4 Albino Gingerbread Men

October 21, 2010 33 comments

It is week 4 into 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies.

I was wondering whether it is still too early to be introducing cookies with the festive colours of green and red.After all, week 4 means that we are STILL 8 weeks away from Christmas.

But, that’s pretty subjective isn’t it? We could be: We are ONLY 8 weeks away from Christmas!

So I’ve decided to play it cool, slowly incorporating the colours, bit by bit. Starting from drawn green and red features on my troop. Nothing too gaudy here. Yet.

And these cookies, inspired by i-bake-for-you are just it!

Being a snow-washed colour, these cookies are also like blank canvases, so ready to take the merry colours of the season.

They are also made from tapioca starch. Now, i am not a flour expert here, but i think these are gluten free (can anyone clarify on that?). Because no matter how much i kneaded the dough, the familiar gluten strands didnt form.

But having said that, i think the fact that these are gluten free made these cookies really fragile (again, is this accurate?). They are of this melt-in-your-mouth, sandy texture.

You dont really need to chew them, u can just break these cookies by pushing it against the roof mouth with your tongue. It will pretty much shatter and dissolve on its own. Geez, am i even making sense here??

Ah, my smart looking, friendly, albeit brittle troop.

And of course, some casuaties are inevitable aren’t they. No biggie, just pop them into your mouth and none will be the wiser. 🙂

I didn’t follow the recipe published on I-bake-for-you as it called for stir frying that tapioca starch. I wasn’t interested  in a creating flour bath in my kitchen,  instead i settled on this ingenious recipe which called for microwaving the said starch. Ah!

Recipe adapted from Little Corner of Mine (Thanks for sharing!)


-2 1/2 cups tapioca flour/tapioca starch
-1 Tbp. butter, melted
-1 egg yolk (from large egg)
-1 cup icing sugar
-120ml thick coconut milk (or coconut cream)


1. Place a paper towel on a microwave safed bowl, add the tapioca flour and microwave for 1 minute. Set aside and let it cool. (You can fry the flour in the wok if you don’t have a microwave.)

Microwave extra tapioca flour for standby (to flour the surface) and kneading purposes.

2. Sift tapioca flour and icing sugar in a big bowl. Add melted butter, yolk & coconut milk. Knead until the dough is pliable. (If the dough is wet or soft, add more tapioca flour, 1 Tbp. at a time and knead until it becomes a harder dough. Likewise, if it’s too dry, add more coconut milk).

3. Roll out the dough on lightly floured surface to about 3mm thickness. Cut into shapes with a cookie cutter (Or you can use the kuih bangkit mould (this required longer baked time). Arrange on lined baking tray and bake at 350’F for 15 minutes. It will puff when baked.

Again, i thank Abby for hosting the wonderful event! I am excited to see what the other cookie makers do this week!

Categories: Cookies Tags: , ,

Brown Sugar Pound Cake

October 20, 2010 9 comments

I almost didnt want to post this up. Let’s face it, this isnt exactly the most interesting looking cake. It is brown, plain and dull. In fact it is looking kinda ugly.

And no matter which angle i took it from, the pics just refused to come out right. I bent over my back, trying to capture it from an angle that would make it look somewhat prettier, but it didnt work. I gave up, but still uploaded it to the computer anyway, out of habit.

I took a bite of the cake. It was good. Moist, dense, and very flavourful.

I am a sucker for brown sugar, and was absolutely loving the aroma it brought to the cake.

I placed the cake in a cake stand, and left it around for the other family members to eat it. They did, each silently helping him/herself to the slice.

No one commented though, and that’s pretty common, cause i bake almost everyday, and it is quite needless for them to be commenting everyday. And i let it at that, no bothering to ask for opinions as well.

The next morning i cut myself another slice from the now much smaller cake.

The day old cake really impressed me this time. The brown sugar left DEEP marks within the cake and gave the cake such a strong personality. , and boy, that was when i decided that this post HAS to go up.

I am for that  “not all that glitter is gold” thing today. For this definitely didnt glitter, but it still shone!

Recipe from nosh with me

(who adapted from L.A Times) Thanks for sharing!!

*note:  I omitted the glaze as i thought the cake was sweet enough as it is

Cake Ingredients
3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, softened, plus additional for greasing the pan
1 (1-pound) box dark brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
5 eggs

Cake Preparation

  1. Heat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a 10-inch tube pan.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt and stir with a fork; set aside. Into a small bowl, pour the milk and add the vanilla; set aside.
  3. With a mixer, beat the butter at high speed until light and fluffy. Add the brown sugar in three batches, then add all of the white sugar, beating after each addition. Add the eggs one by one, beating well after each addition.
  4. Reduce the speed to low and add half of the flour mixture and then half the milk, beating until the flour or milk has disappeared into the batter. Add the rest of the flour and the rest of the milk in the same way. Quickly scrape the batter into the tube pan and bake until the cake is nicely browned at the edges, springs back when lightly touched at the center and a wooden skewer inserted into the center comes out clean, about 1 hour and 10 minutes.
  5. Remove the pan from the oven and leave it on a wire rack for 20 to 30 minutes. Loosen the cake from the pan with a table knife and turn it out onto a wire rack or plate, then leave it to cool completely. When cool, glaze with caramel glaze.

Glaze Ingredients
2 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons half and half (I used whole milk)
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Glaze Preparation

  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter.
  2. Add milk and brown sugar, stir to combine.
  3. Boil vigorously for 1 minute.
  4. Remove from heat and beat in 1/2 cup powdered sugar.
  5. Cool slightly then beat in the vanilla and remaining powdered sugar, adding more milk if necessary.
  6. Quickly spoon over cake before glaze sets.
Categories: Cakes Tags: , , , ,

Gorgeous Gougeres

October 18, 2010 8 comments

When it comes to French baking, I am probably as french as french fries could get.
Sure i have heard of the legendary Pierre Hermes and his macaroons,
but when it comes to creating this kinda advanced, sophisticated baking, I am lost at sea.

Recently, the foodism blogosphere has been hyped about Dorie Greenspan’s new cook book “Around my French table”.
If you haven’t heard about French Fridays with Dorie, then you’ve probably heard about Tuesdays with Dorie.
Both are groups dedicated to cook or bake pre-chosen recipes from the two of Dorie’s books.

And as foreign as the name sounds to me, i felt impelled to try.
One, because they look like balls of cheesy goodness

And two, because it’s a Dorie!
And i can’t tell you enough how much i worship her first book, Baking from My Home to Yours,
or how it lays beside my bed, as one of my favourite bedtime reading..

Like most of Dorie’s recipes, this one did not disappoint.

I pulled out a tray of aromatic cheesy little orbs which were crisp on the outside and absolutely moist within.
They were so packed with flavour, I felt as if my sense of smell was working overtime, in a good way of course as i bit into them.

I was also impressed by the powerpuff lift (*cue for the cartoon network themesong) which created a cavernous interior.

Although these are made to be eaten empty, i just wished i had something to fill it up with. Really, the gorgeous hollow just screamed to be filled with more goodness!

Anyways, as much as i love Baking from my Home to Yours, i think i would be giving Around My French Table a pass, cause after all, it’s about French cooking, not baking. and God knows how challenged i am with a stove.

I was however, able to get the recipe off the Amazon webbie. It is one of the first few recipes which Amazon allows to you to browse through.

I will not be posting the recipe here as there is a code against that with the group

Oh, one last thing though, please do serve these immediately. These babies kinda lose their crispness after a while.

Categories: Pastries Tags: , ,

For a worthy cause…

October 15, 2010 6 comments

Cupcakes and buttercream. Really, the possibilities are endless isnt it?


Anyways, These are for a bakesale held at my nephew’s school. Proceeds from the sale  go to children  from under-privilleged families with terminal diseases.

The organization “will make sure these children can live their remaning days with dignity, care and unconditional love”.


I hope my bit helped. I have nothing but best wishes for them, and of course, my prayers.


Categories: Cakes Tags: , , , ,

12 Weeks of Christmas, Week #3 No bake Peanut Butter Rice Krispies Hedgehogss

October 13, 2010 28 comments

I know the theme for this event is to post happy, colourful Christmas cookies, but i just couldn’t resist sneaking in these little treats.

Sure, hedgehogs are more suited for Halloween, which of course is also just around the corner. In fact, the original recipe called for them to be shaped into mice. But i wasn’t about to get licorice ropes just for the mice tails.

So i kinda improvised, and tried to make them as friendly looking as i possibly could.

The original recipe called for mini candies for the mice’s eyes.

But, that’s not happening to my friendly hedgehogs, i wasn’t about to let them have red, evil stares.

Instead, I dotted some white chocolate for these, plus a mini within for that extra innocence.

And also, a sprinkle of thorns, for i just simply couldnt leave these cherubic faces defenceless.


That’s a hedgehog, eating a giant almond. Hedgehogs eat almonds right.

Oh, did i mention that these are No-bake?

Andthey are made up of the most perfect pair, peanut butter and chocolate?

Ok, i shall not hedge for the recipe and hog on your attention any longer.

Here goes! Recipe from Taste of Home


  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1-1/2 cups crisp rice cereal
  • 3/4 cup sliced almonds
  • 12 ounces dark chocolate candy coating, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon shortening
  • 36 pieces black shoestring licorice (2 inches each)
  • Assorted candies: Red cake decorator dots, M&M’s semisweet miniature baking bits and black sugar


  • In a small bowl, beat the peanut butter, butter and vanilla until blended; gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar. Stir in cereal. Shape into 1-in. balls, tapering one end to resemble a mouse. Position almonds on heads for ears. Refrigerate until chilled.
  • In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt candy coating and shortening; stir until smooth. Dip mice into coating; place on waxed paper-lined baking sheets. Immediately insert licorice for tails. Add red dots for eyes and M&M’s miniature baking bits for noses. Sprinkle with black sugar. Refrigerate until set. Yield: 3 dozen.

This is my week #3 of 12 weeks of Christmas Cookies. Third week, means that we are about 9 weeks away from Christmas!

Thanks again Abbey Sweets for hosting the event. I cant wait to see what the others bake up with!

Categories: Cookies Tags: , , , ,

Yet another Birthday

October 11, 2010 10 comments

My brother – in- law’s birthday is one day after my brother. And after that purist chocolate of a cake for the brother, i wanted another element to be featured in this next cake.

Don’t get me wrong, chocolate is still a favorite, and it’s presence is mandatory in this cake. However, for this cake, it, the chocolate content can take a backseat, and i was allowed room to introduce another ingredient.

I recounted the various times i hung out with my brother in law, and noticed an ongoing trend. Starbucks, Coffee Bean, Starbucks, Starbucks. Yup, we are dealing with a coffee buff here.

And so, the opera cake it is then!

Layers of sponge cake sandwiching alternating layers of coffee buttercream and chocolate ganache.


Categories: Cakes Tags: , , , ,

No-Nonsense Chocolate Cake

October 10, 2010 5 comments

With a bold statement such as “chocolate and fruits should NEVER go together”, i couldn’t for the life of me risk putting fruits into his birthday cake.

No pureed fruits into the cake batter,

No macerated fruits between the cake layers,

and not even glazed fruits to serve as aesthetic purposes.

I am talking about my purist chocolate of a brother,  the Japanese based boy, who brought us the many super super cute Disney cookie cutters.

Birthday boy popped in for a visit which coincided with his Birthday. Happy Birthday Brother!

Categories: Cakes Tags: , , ,

12 Weeks of Christmas, Week #2 – Chocolate Dipped Disney Cookies

October 8, 2010 23 comments

What do u do when a stranger smiles at you?

For me, i smile back.

So what happens when a whole army of Disney characters grin at you?

I grin back of course,  out of reciprocal courtesy. We don’t want to be accused of bad manner.

I was grinning at the first few these cookies, as i stamped on random Disney faces on a piece of flat shortbread dough. Mickey, Minnie, .. Winnie, Tigger… Chip and Dale ( I just realized i dont know Chip from Dale).

But minutes into that, my grin faded to a smile, as the dough became increasingly sticky with all the extra handling.

And soon after, the smile was replaced with a scowl, as i battled with the dough which went rebel on me and decided to stick to every crook and cranny within the facial features of my stamps.

I stopped, and decided a cool-off period was in order, literally. I sent the dough to the fridge, and myself to the comfort of my air-conditioned bedroom.

After half an hour or so, i came back with a chilled head, ready to face my challenger.

I had a new strategy, to work as fast as humanely possible, before the butter melts, and i am faced with the repeated sticky (no pun intended) situation.

As quickly as i could, I reached out for whichever cutter was nearest to me, not paying attention who i was stamping. As a result, i may or may not have ended up with too many mickeys, and too little tigger.

Thats okay i guess, cause after all they just make one big happy family.

My  happy mood was again restored as i pulled out a tray of pretty cookies.

And to elevate that, i dipped those happy cookies into chocolate and sent happy mood to overjoy.

This is my second cookie post for 12 weeks of Christmas Cookies.

And for a list of what the other participants did, head over to the Abby Sweets (the host), or any other participants who will have a linky on their blogs. I’m sorry for the lack of the linky in my blog, cause apparently, WordPress doesnt support Mr.Linky.

That aside, 10 more weeks to go before Christmas! And i am so geared up to see what the others baked up this week!

Oh wait, there is the 3D version of these cookies too!

Categories: Cookies Tags: , , ,

Oreo Rubble

October 7, 2010 11 comments

I have been feeling a bit caught up, between muffins and cupcakes.

I wanted them to look pretty, but i didn’t want the fussy frostings.

Because, let’s admit it, each time i pack the cupcakes into a case, i have to beware of butterfinger smudges.

And each time i walk with the said loaded case, i have to walk a lil bit slower.

And i do say a lil prayer, for the weather to be just right, that it wouldn’t rain too hard, or shine too bright,

Just so that my frostings would stay upright.

But with this cupcakes, my precautions can take a mini break.

These cuppies were swiftly sweeped into an awaiting lunchbox.

And as i walk with the lunchbox, i could even afford a lil swing of my arm.

I smiled upon the heavy deluge that accompanied us the whole of this morning.

And i have to say, these cuppies are quite lookers too. Rustic, and homely, a different set of charm from its hollywood-ised, glammed up cousin with the pretty cream frostings.

So if you are like me, or Dana, who are feeling in a lil bit of a cupcake scrooge mood, this is one recipe to turn to.

Mississippi Mud Cupcakes
Taken from Dana who adapted from Cupcakes!
Makes 18-24 regular cupcakes

I used Newman’s Own for the cookies.  The recipe says the yield is 18, but I got 24 – never a bad thing!

2 1/4 cups crushed chocolate sandwich cookies , in 1/2 inch to 1/4 inch pieces
1 cup (6oz.) semisweet chocolate chips
Chocolate Sour Cream Cupcake Batter (recipe follows)
3 oz. semisweet chocolate, chopped

Position a rack in the middle of the oven.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line 18 muffin tin cups with paper cupcake liners.

Spoon 1 tbsp. of the cookie pieces into the bottom of each paper liner, then spoon about 8 chocolate chips over the cookie pieces in each liner.  Spoon a scant 1/4 cup of batter over the chocolate chips.  Sprinkle the remaining chocolate chips and cookie pieces over the  tops, pressing them gently into the batter.

Bake just until the tops feel firm and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 22 minutes.  Cool the cupcakes for 20 minutes in the pans on a wire rack.

Carefully lift the cupcakes from the pan and place them on a wire rack to cool completely.  Put the chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl and place it over, but not touching, a saucepan of barely simmering water.  Stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth.  Remove from the water and set aside to cool slightly.

Use a small spoon to drizzle thin lines of melted chocolate over the top of each cooled cupcake.  The cupcakes can be covered and stored at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Chocolate Sour Cream Cupcake Batter

This is a great basic cupcake to have in your repetoire.  All kinds of frosting taste great on top.

3 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup water

Put the chocolate ina heatproof bowl and place it over, but not touching, a saucepan of barely simmering water.  Stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth.  Remove from the water and set aside to cool slightly.

Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter and sugar until smoothly blended and creamy, about 2 minutes.  Stop the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl as needed during mixing.  On low speed, mix in the melted chocolate.  On medium speed, add the eggs one at a time, mixing well until each is blended into the batter.  Add the vanilla and beat until the mixture looks creamy and the color has lightened slightly, about 1 minute.  Mix in the sour cream until no white streaks remain.  On low speed, add half of the flour mixture, mixing just to incorporate it.  Mix in the water.  Mix in the remaining flour mixture unil it is incorporated and the batter looks smooth.  Proceed with above recipe.

And, away we go!

October 5, 2010 7 comments

Let your tastebuds travel with these bewitching sweet and salty broomstick cookies. I came across this delightful Halloween cookie idea @ Betty Crocker.

These are so cute that i think they will magically be swept away if you serve them as part of your Halloween platter.

Recipe from HERE

Categories: Cookies Tags: , , ,

Lil’ Miss Uptight

October 4, 2010 2 comments

You know you are uptight when u need two oven thermometers in your oven.

I so need to lighten up.

Categories: Uncategorized

Rockin’ the Rolls

October 3, 2010 6 comments

After yesterday’s less than satisfactory bread, i was itching to make something that will redeem my faith in my breadmaking.

So, i went back to my true, tried and tested recipe, and switched from cinnamon to chocolate.  The process was just like visiting an old friend, i knew know what to do, what not to do, what to expect and and what not. It was quite relaxing, if not comforting.

I kneaded the dough for a good 30 minutes, and was rewarded with the smoothest and silkiest dough which was able to pass that elusive window pane test. All it took was some patience, and persistence if you must.

I left the dough to proof for about an hour, which was more than enough when u have a hot, humid climate like mine ( i live in Indonesia). By the end of the hour, the dough has more than tripled in size! i was a bit worried that i might have overproofed it, and that it might taste sour later on. But thankfully none of that happened.

As for the filling, instead of the usual cinnamon sugar i settled on chocolate chips today, just because, u can never go wrong with chocolate.

I moved at a leisurely pace as i rolled the dough into a log, sliced it, and let it proof a 2nd time. Just because it’s a Sunday, and i didnt have to worry about the office, or anything boring like that. A very indulgent baking session, really.

The dough went into the oven for a good 20-25 minutes.

and after all that time in the oven, i pulled out a pan of golden brown deliciousness.

Which was promptly drizzled with chocolate, of course

Next, came the final test,

the texture of the bread.

I pulled at the first roll and soft fluffy goodness greeted me. The texture was somewhat like a sandwich bread, a fresh one. The roll was so soft i had to collapse it sidewards, and use the gentlest sawing motion with my serrated knife.

aahh, thats about right for Asian styled sweet bread.

For dough recipe, refer to my older post, HERE.

What a Happy Sunday Breakfast.

Floss Roll Bread

October 2, 2010 4 comments

After all the cakes and cookies i have baked in the past couple of days, i have decided that something heartier, (and healthier) was in order. These chicken floss rolls are no strangers in Asian bakeries. They make pretty good breakfast items.

Instead of its usual bun shapes, this Asian-type sweet, soft bread was baked in a jelly roll pan. It is then spread with a thin layer of mayonnaise and rolled into a log over a bed of floss ( in this case chicken). If you’ve ever made Buche De Noel, this will be easy peasy for you.

Like my previous bout with yeasted bread, this recipe also requires a water roux to be made before the kneading and all that jazz. I’ve been told that this method extends the moisture keeping qualities of the bread. I guess it does help somewhat.

Between this recipe and the previous, this one however seems rather on the dry and tougher side. Don’t get me wrong, they are not, u know, bad, but they just dont live up to my expectations, which was lifted rather high from that previous recipe.

I was quite disappointed that after all that kneading (i hand kneaded these for about half an hour!!), i was not quite rewarded with what i anticipated. Then again, it might be due to overbaking on my part, or the fact that the dough is rolled thinly, but I am sticking to the old recipe for now.

Of course, an additional spread of mayonnaise and a dunk in the floss on the surface wouldn’t hurt too!

For a more successful version of this, head over to HappyHomeBaking. Thanks for sharing the recipe!
Seaweed Pork Floss Rolls (65degC TangZhong)

(makes 6 rolls)

water roux:

20g bread flour
100ml water


195g bread flour
90g cake flour
30g caster sugar
12g milk powder
6g salt
6g instant yeast
60g egg, lightly beaten
65ml water
75g water roux (tangzhong)
45g unsalted butter


chopped spring onions
sesame seeds
seaweed pork floss

to make tang zhong:
  • Place 20g bread flour in a saucepan. Add 100ml water, mix till smooth, making sure there are no lumps of flour. Cook over medium to low heat, stirring constantly with a hand whisk to prevent it from burning. Within 1 to 2 mins, the mixture will start to thicken, stop when you see traces in the mixture for every stir you make with the hand whisk. (Take a look at the video clip here. ) The 65degC tang zhong is ready. Immediately transfer the hot tang zhong into a bowl and cover it with a cling wrap, making sure the cling wrap sticks onto the surface of the mixture. This is to prevent a film from forming on the surface. Leave to cool completely before using it. Measure 75g for the recipe, there will be a little bit of leftover.
to make dough (by hand):
  • Mix all the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre and add in the egg and tang zhong. Reserve about 20ml of water and add the rest into the mixing bowl. Mix the ingredients with hand and slowly form into a rough dough. Add in a little of the reserved water if the mixture is too dry.
  • Transfer dough to a lightly floured work surface. Knead the dough till smooth. Add in the remaining water a little at a time, knead well after each addition. (This way, the dough will not be too wet and sticky). Use up all the water. The whole process should take about 10mins.
  • Knead in the butter. Continue to knead the dough until it no longer sticks to your hand, becomes smooth and elastic. This should take about another 20 to 30 mins. Do the window pane test: pinch a piece of the dough, pull and stretch it. It should be elastic, and can be pulled away into a thin membrane without tearing/breaking apart easily.
  • Place dough in a lightly greased (use vegetable oil or butter) mixing bowl, cover with cling wrap and let proof in room temperature (around 28 to 30 degC) for about 40mins or an hour, or until double in bulk.
  • Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and give a few light kneading to press out the gas. Roll into a round dough. Cover with a damp cloth or cling wrap and let the dough rest for 15mins.
  • Roll out the dough into a rectangular shape to fit a 30cmx40cm baking tray (I used a 10″ by 14″ tray). Place dough in baking tray(lined with parchment paper). Cover and let it proof for around 30~40 minutes.
  • Use a fork to poke holes all over the surface of the dough (this is to ensure the bread will not puff up too much during baking). Brush with egg wash then sprinkle with chopped onions and sesame seeds. Bake at 170~180degC for about 15 minutes (do not over bake).
to assemble:
  • Remove bread from tray and leave to cool. Invert the bread on a parchment paper. Cut a few slits along the longer edge of the bread, make the slits only half-way through the bread do not cut through. The slits will make rolling up the bread easier.
  • Spread a thin layer of mayonnaise on the surface and sprinkle with pork floss. From the longer edge, roll up like a swiss roll. Wrap the bread roll with the parchment paper. Secure and leave it for about 30mins so that the roll can stay in its shape without unrolling. (I tried to tape it down, but the tape couldn’t stick onto the parchment paper, so I had to use stripes of paper to secure the roll.) Trim away the edges and cut the bread into 6 portions. Spread the cut sides with some mayonnaise and coat with pork floss.

12 Weeks of Christmas, Week #1- Smores Cookies

October 1, 2010 18 comments

I am probably ahead of everyone in posting my first post, but i am on the other side of the world, and it’s Friday for me already! Yays!!

Anyways, for my first post, i decided that i wanted something familiar and comforting. Something homely, unpretentious and simple, for that is what Christmas is all about right?

The first thing that came to mind was of course the classic – Chocolate chip cookies. These cookies don’t need any introduction, for they are practically a household staple.

But, baking chocolate chip cookies would be boring.

Every household probably already has their own favourite recipe they go back to from time to time. They don’t need me to post yet another recipe.

So i decided to jazz it up a lil’ bit, and made these Smores Cookies.

These cookies are basically your average chewy, soft baked chocolate chip cookies. But they kicked it up a notch by having graham cracker crumbs as part of its list of ingredients.

Good thing i had that at the ready, homemade. That added extra depth in aroma and flavour.

And of course, the obvious toppings didn’t hurt as well. The recipe called for Hershey’s chocolate blocs and marshmallows. I added graham cracker bits for good measure (yes, i am pretty obsessed with that cookie! )

Michelle used these cookies to bribe someone to cover her shift. That’s a fair exchange. In fact, it might be in favour of the beneficiary of these cookies. I, for one, wouldn’t mind it for one bit. 🙂

Thanks Michelle for sharing the recipe!

Smores Cookies

1 3/4 cups flour

1 cup graham cracker crumbs

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

1 cup/ 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

3/4 cup sugar

3/4 cup light brown sugar

2 tsp. vanilla

2 eggs

2 cups miniature chocolate chips

1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows

2 regular Hershey bars, roughly chopped

In a stand mixer, combine the butter and sugars and mix until fluffy. Mix in the eggs and vanilla until combined. Add the flour, graham crackers, salt and baking soda and mix well. Stir in the chocolate chips then cover and refrigerate the dough for about one hour. Preheat oven to 375 F. Take a tablespoon of the dough, roll into a ball, and drop onto a greased baking sheet. Repeat with the rest of dough, leaving about 2 inches between each to allow it to spread. Bake for 6 minutes, then remove from the oven. Push a 3 – 5 marshmallows and a few pieces of a Hershey’s bar into each cookie. Return to oven and bake for another 2 – 3 minutes until golden brown and the marshmallows are a bit toasted. Cool on a wire rack and enjoy!

I can’t wait to see what the others bake!

For the complete list of the 12 weeks of christmas cookies participants, head over to Abby Sweets.

Lastly, i wish a Happy Friday to everyone. Remember, we are only 12 weeks away from Christmas!

Week 1 Twelve Weeks of Christmast:

Categories: Cookies Tags: , , , ,