Sunday, October 30, 2011

Orange Popsicle Ice Cream

It has been more than two months since I last posted  an Ice Cream recipe. I have made Ice Cream a couple of times since then, and they are all repeats, the same ones which I have made earlier. I made Dragon Fruit Ice Cream one weekend, when my nieces and nephew came for a visit. I made some Peach Ice Cream when my daughter's friend planned to come over to spend the day with her, in the end, she could not make it and we finished the ice cream ourselves! And I made some Mango Ice Cream when my neighbour gave me some big juicy mangoes from her tree. These ice cream are all worth making again. I figured it's time to try out a new flavour.



 I have some oranges in the fridge which I thought of making some ice cream with and found the perfect Orange Ice Cream recipe. David Lebovitz did it again with this delicious, creamy, orangy ice cream.


Instead of using the blender, I  mix the sugar and the orange zest by hand! Wow! Smells fantastic! I almost did not want to wash my hands! : o ) My son happens to come back from school at that time, the minute he walked into the house (not the kitchen!), he goes, "Wow, smells nice, oranges!" 


 Yum!


 Yum!


 Yum!


This is is a delicious, creamy and refreshing Ice Cream bursting with the tangy, citrusy taste and the fragrance of the oranges! Simply a beautiful fabulous ice cream! There will definitely be a repeat of this delightful ice cream, for sure! 


And I'm bringing this to a Cookbook Party, hosted by Louise of Months of Edible Celebrations. Louise is celebrating her Blogoversary by throwing a Cookbook Party, and October being the National Cookbook Month! There's a whole list of food celebrations just for the month of October! For full details, hop over to Months of Edible Celebrations. I'm submitting this delightful Ice Cream under the list "Dessert Month"!



Orange Popsicle Ice Cream
(adapted from "The Perfect Scoop" by David Lebovitz)
Makes about 1 quart (1 liter)
2/3 cup (130gm) sugar (I use about 1/2 cup, depending on the sweetness of the oranges)
grated zest of 3 oranges, preferably unsprayed
1-1/4 cups (310ml) freshly squeezed orange juice (from 4 or 5 large oranges)
1 cup (240gm) sour cream
1/2 cup (125ml) half-and-half (I use whipping cream)
2 teaspoons Grand Marnier or another orange liquer (I omit this)


In a blender, pulverize the sugar and orange zest until the zest is very fine. Add the orange juice, sour cream, half-and-half, and Grand Marnier and blend until the sugar is completely dissolved.
Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator, then freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.



Thursday, October 27, 2011

Toasted Almond Pound Cake

This is the best Almond Pound Cake I've eaten! Hands down! It is so soft, with tender crumbs, moist and absolutely delicious! Another keeper from "The Cake Book" by Tish Boyle, which is becoming my top favourite baking book for cakes at the moment! This is the fourth recipe I've tried, and all four recipes are keepers. I love almond cakes, and this "Toasted Almond Pound Cake" is really good.



The smell of the almonds while the cake is baking is fantastic! My sister was around when I baked this and we could not wait to take a bite of this cake. Half an hour after the cake was out of the oven is the longest that we can wait! The minute the knife cuts into the tender crumbs, I knew this is a keeper! Both of us go WOW, absolutely delicious! This cake is soft, tender, moist and full of flavour from the toasted nutty almonds and really fragrant.


This is so good, you will find yourself reaching for a second slice!


The recipe calls for slivered almonds which are toasted and then process with some sugar until just finely ground. I did the lazy and easy way out, I just toasted the almond meal instead, until light brown, and proceed on with the recipe. One of the ingredients that I could not find was Almond Paste. So I made my own. It is so super easy and quick to make. I got the recipe from where else, but the website for almond lovers, Almond Board of California. If you cannot find any canned almond paste, try making your own, I never knew it was so easy to make. Once you have your almond paste, either homemade or store bought, try out this delightfully delicious cake, you will be glad you did!


I'm sharing this with 
Full Plate Thursday over at Miz Helen's Country Cottage
Bake with Bizzy at Bizzy B. Bakes
These Chicks Cooked Link Party at This Chick Cooks


And I'm bringing this to a Cookbook Party, hosted by Louise of Months of Edible Celebrations. Louise is celebrating her Blogoversary by throwing a Cookbook Party, and October being the National Cookbook Month! There's a whole list of food celebrations just for the month of October! For full details, hop over to Months of Edible Celebrations. I'm submitting this cake under the list "Dessert Month"!



Homemade almond paste, you may view the original recipe, click here.


Almond Paste
(source from : Almond Board of California)
1-1/2 cups (8oz) whole blanched almonds
1-1/2 cups (5 oz) sifted powdered sugar
1 egg white
1 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp salt
Grind whole blanched almonds, a portion at a time, in electric blender or food chopper with fine blade (Yield : about 1-3/4 cups ground almonds). Combine with powdered sugar, egg white, almond extract and salt; work to a stiff paste. Store in refrigerator tightly wrapped in saran or disposable plastic bag. 
Makes 1-1/3 cups (13oz) almond paste.
(my notes : I use ready bought ground almonds instead)


Toasted Almond Pound Cake
(adapted from "The Cake Book" by Tish Boyle)
1-3/4 cups (6.2oz/175gm) sifted cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (2.1oz/60gm) blanched slivered almonds, toasted (see page 36)
1 cup (7 oz/200gm) granulated sugar, divided (I use 160gm)
1 cup (2 sticks/8oz/227gm) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup (5oz/142gm) canned almond paste
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 cup (120ml) heavy cream or whole milk
confectioners' sugar for dusting

  1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 325F. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9x5-inch loaf pan. Dust the pan with flour. Stack two baking sheets on top of one another and set aside. (This will be used to insulate the cake while it is baking - you can use an insulated baking sheet instead if you have one).
  2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl. Whisk to combine, and set aside.
  3. Combine the almonds and 1/4 cup of the sugar in the bowl of a food processor and process until the almonds are just finely ground (don't overprocess, or the nuts will become oily). Stir the ground almonds into the flour mixture and set aside. (I use ground almonds instead and toast them till light brown)
  4. In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, beat the butter and almond paste at medium speed until very creamy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add the remaining 3/4 cup sugar and beat the mixture at high speed until very light, about 4 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium and add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally.  Beat in the vanilla and almond extract. Add the flour mixture at low speed in three additions, alternating it with the heavy cream in two additions and mixing just until the flour is incorporated. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
  5. Place the cake in the oven on top of the stacked baking sheets. Bake for 70 to 85 minutes, until a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Place the cake pan on a wire rack and let cool for 20 minutes.
  6. Unmold the cake and cool completely, right side up.
  7. Dust the top of the cake with confectioners' sugar before serving.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week, or refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Pulut Serikaya

Pulut Serikaya is a popular Nyonya kuih mainly found in Malacca. It is a two-layer kuih, bottom being the  glutinous rice steamed with coconut milk and the top is a yellow custard base with a mixture of thick coconut milk, eggs, sugar and some flour, usually some yellow colouring is added to enhance the colour of kaya, (a popular egg jam similar to the topping, hence the name). Though, the more common ones are known as Pulut Serimuka, it has the same rice glutinous base, and gets the  flavour and colour from the green pandan leaves, sometimes some green colouring may be added to enhance the colour of the pandan leaves. Pulut Serimuka can be easily found sold in most stalls that sells kuihs.

My mom told us that the difference between these two kuihs, is, Pulut Serimuka, the one with the green topping, is common among the Malays and can be found throughout Malaysia whereby Pulut Serikaya, the other with the yellow kaya topping, definitely belongs to the Nyonyas of Malacca, even though they are considered the same by many who are not aware of  the difference between these two kuihs. 




I have not seen Pulut Serikaya being sold here, where I live. The only time that I get to eat this delicious kuih is when I'm back in my hometown, Malacca, or when I made my own, which I have not done so in such a long time. Since Aspiring Bakers, theme for October is "Traditional Kuih", now seems a good time to make this again. Though I enjoy eating Pulut Serimuka, my preference has always been Pulut Serikaya. 




This recipe was passed down from my mother.  My Mom did not have any exact measurement, as everything that she made was by the "feel" and self-estimation. So when she passed on the recipe to us, it was just the ingredients with an estimation in quantity. Just like my Mom, I have made this in the past based on the '"feel" and self-estimation, but for this time, I have measured precisely what I have used. The Nyonyas love to use the Bunga Telang (clitoria ternatea or blue pea flower), where they are pounded to a mash, and squeezed out the beautiful indigo colour that is used as a natural dye for the rice. I did not use this, as I could not find my packet of dried bunga telang! If using dried Bunga Telang, they need to be soaked in warm water first.

Many of the traditional kuihs in Malaysia uses coconut milk. We are lucky that to buy freshly squeezed coconut milk is so convenient. They are sold in markets and even most grocery stores sell freshly squeezed coconut milk as and when you need them.


Let's make some Pulut Serikaya !

Glutinous Rice is washed clean and soaked in cool water for at least 4 hours. Rinse and drain. Place rice in a shallow steaming tray. Randomly place the pieces of pandan leaves embedded in the rice, cover rice with the salted coconut milk.


Place the tray on a steamer rack.


Cover and steam over high heat for about 30 minutes. This precious steamer set was given to me by my Mom, where she has cooked and steamed hundreds of kuihs in.


After 30 minutes, fluff up rice with fork, discard pandan leaves.


Press down rice on pan, making sure it is compact and firm. You may use the same tray or transfer to two smaller trays. Place the pan back in the steamer and steam for another 15 minutes.


To make the custard : Eggs are beaten lightly, mix in the sugar and coconut milk. Whisk until sugar has completely dissolved. Add in the flours, whisk to combine until there are no lumps.


Strain the custard mixture to remove any lumps.


Pour custard mixture over the rice in the pan and steam for a further 30 minutes over medium-low heat until cooked and set.


 Leave the kuih to cool completely in pan, preferably overnight, or at least 5-6 hours.


 Pulut Serikaya is traditionally served cut in daimond shaped slices. You many cut it in squares or rectangles, whichever you prefer.


 Miniature diamond shaped slices, with a toothpick inserted in each piece, great for a party or a get-together.


This is truly delicious! The custard has the perfect balance, the texture is not too hard or soft, with the right amount of sweetness. The rice is tasty with the salty coconut milk, not too dry or soft, just the right texture. One of my very favourite kuih!


I'm submitting this to "Aspiring Bakers #12 : Traditional Kuih (October 2011) hosted by Small Small Baker.


Pulut Serikaya
(by kitchen flavours)
makes two 8" pans
For the Bottom Layer
600gm glutinous rice
200ml thick coconut milk, add some water to equal 650ml
3/4 tsp salt
2 pandan leaves, cut to three sections each

Wash glutinous rice until water runs clear. Soak rice in cool water at least 4 hours or overnight.
Get the steamer ready with rapidly boiling water. Rinse and drain the glutinous rice. Place in a big round shallow tray, about 12" diameter. In a medium mixing bowl or measuring cup, mix the thick coconut milk, adding some water to equals 650ml. Add in the salt and stir until dissolved. Cut the pandan leaves into three sections and randomly place the leaves, embedded in the glutinous rice in the tray. Pour the coconut milk mixture over the glutinous rice. It should just cover the rice, barely visible. Place the tray carefully in the steamer, cover and steam over high heat for about 30 minutes. Top up water at steamer base if necessary.

At the end of 30 minutes, remove tray from steamer, be careful, do not position your hand anywhere directly over the steamer where the steam is, to avoid scalding your hands over the hot steam from the steamer base. Fluff up rice with a fork, discard all the pandan leaves, turning rice all over. Press down rice firmly using a rice spatula (or with a piece of banana leaf or a piece of aluminium foil which works as well). Make sure the rice is pressed down firmly and compact. Place the steamer rack with the tray back on, and steam for a further 15 minutes. Remove the steamer rack  from heat and pour the topping over, bubbles may appear on the topping, which is normal. Just use a spoon to burst the bubbles or scoope them out. Place steam rack back on again, reduce the heat to medium low and top up the steamer base with water if necessary. Cover and steam for about 30 minutes until custard is completely cooked and set. Remove and leave to cool at room temperature, preferably overnight or at least 5-6 hours. Cut and slice to the traditional diamond shapes and serve. Enjoy!

For the Custard Layer
2 eggs
400ml thick coconut milk plus 250ml water
300gm granulated sugar
130gm plain all-purpose flour
80gm custard powder
pinch of yellow food colouring (optional)

In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs lightly. Add in coconut milk mixture and sugar. Whisk with a hand-whisk until sugar has completely dissolved. Add in flour, custard powder and pinch of yellow food colouring. Whisk to combine until there are no more lumps. Strain mixture to another bowl. Pour over the cooked glutinous rice as directed above.

(notes: I steamed the rice in a big 12" diameter shallow pan, and separate them into two 8" square pans after fluffing up the rice. Press down rice until compact and steam again for about 15 minutes. Pour half the custard in each pan and steam again for about 25-30 minutes until custard is cooked and set).


********************************


I WOULD LIKE TO WISH ALL MY HINDU FRIENDS, HAPPY DIWALI ! 


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Plainly Perfect Pound Cake with Brandied Cranberries

Another keeper from "The Cake Book" by Tish Boyle. This cake is a plain pound cake, I added in some dried cranberries boiled and soaked in brandy and orange juice.  A delightful cake, moist, tender, soft and wonderful with the cranberries. 





A rich buttery cake!


Tish Boyle suggested to serve this cake either on its own, or with ice cream or berries and softly whipped cream.


But this is really good on its own, with a cup of warm tea.

I'm sharing this with :
Sweets For A Saturday at Sweet As Sugar Cookies
Bake with Bizzy at Bizzy B. Bakes
Sweet Tooth Friday at Alli n Son
Full Plate Thursday at Miz Helen's Country Cottage


And I'm bringing this to a Cookbook Party, hosted by Louise of Months of Edible Celebrations. Louise is celebrating her Blogoversary by throwing a Cookbook Party, and October being the National Cookbook Month! There's a whole list of food celebrations just for the month of October! For full details, hop over to Months of Edible Celebrations. I'm submitting this cake under the list "Cranberry Month"!

Plainly Perfect Pound Cake
(adapted from "The Cake Book" by Tish Boyle)
2 cups (7oz/200gm) sifted cake flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks/8oz/227gm) unsalted butter, softened
1-1/4 cups (8.8oz/250gm) granulated sugar (I use 180gm)
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (omit this)
1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest (I use 2 teaspoons)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup (80ml) heavy cream

  1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 325F. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9x5-inch loaf pan. Dust the pan with flour.
  2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl. Whisk to combine well, and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, beat the butter at medium speed until very creamy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add the sugar and beat the mixture at medium-high speed until very light, about 4 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally (the mixture will look curdled at this point). Beat in the citrus zest and vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture at low speed in three additions, alternating it with the heavy cream in two additions and mixing just until the flour is incorporated. (My addition : Add in the Brandied Cranberries, mixing just until combined). Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
  4. Bake the cake for 60 to 70 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Place the cake pan on a wire rack and let cool for 20 minutes.
  5. Unmold the cake and cool completely, right side up, before slicing.

Kitchen Flavours addition :
Brandied Cranberries
100gm dried cranberries
2 tablespoon brandy
1/4 cup orange juice
Mix the dried cranberries, brandy and orange juice in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature. (I made this a day ahead, keep covered at room temperature, drain before use).





Thursday, October 20, 2011

Chocolate Cherry Slice : Free and Easy Bake-Along #12, Theme - Chocolate and Cherries

"Chocolate and Cherries" is the Theme for our Bake-Along. We are free to bake anything as long as there are chocolates and cherries. I wanted to bake a cherry pie initially but decided to bake Chocolate Cherry Slice instead. I'm happy that I did, these are so, so, addictive! 


These are so goood , stopping at one slice is so hard! The minute I took a bite, it reminds me of some Cherry Coconut Chocolate which a friend bought back from Australia decades ago! I have not eaten it since then, and this delicious slice truly reminds me of that!



As usual, I reduced the sugar to only half, and it is just right, as the milk chocolate is already sweet, believe me, you would not miss out on the other half of the sugar. I did add on about  1/2 teaspoon of orange essence, just so that it would smell nice and to cover the eggy smell, if any, as there is no vanilla extract required in the recipe. 


The only thing is, I would add on more cherries the next time I make this, yes, I will make this again! 1/4 cup of cherries are definitely not enough to scatter evenly throughout the pan. And my advise is to line the pan with aluminium foil with two opposite sides extended over for easy removal as once the slice is cool, the chocolate got stuck at the bottom and I have to reheat it in the oven for a short while to soften it before I could slice and transfer them out into a container.



Chocolate, Cherries and Coconut, they are so good together! Yummy!


I can't wait to see my baking buddies, Lena from Frozen Wings and Zoe from Bake For Happy Kids, what they are baking for Chocolate and Cherries bakes. Let's hop over and pay them a visit.

And I'm happy to inform that there will be a linky for all our Bake-Alongs. Feel free to join in and link your bakes at the linky below, and don't forget to leave a comment. We will visit you right back. The linky will stay open for five days. We do hope that you will join in, everyone's invited.

For our next Bake-Along, we will be baking Key Lime Cupcake, from Bon Appetit Dessert cookbook. If you do not have this book, you may get the recipe here. Please do join us in our Bake-Along. We will however be taking a short break and will post it on 21st November. You may refer to my side-bar for our "UPCOMING BAKE-ALONG", this is to provide ample time so that you can bake them anytime and post it on the dates indicated, linking to our linky. 



Chocolate Cherry Slice
(adapted from "150 Delicious Squares" from Company's Coming Kitchen Workbooks)
Bottom Layer
8 oz (224gm) Milk (sweet chocolate), chopped


Top Layer
2 large eggs
1/2 cup granulated sugar (I use 1/4 cup)
1-1/2 cups shredded coconut (medium unsweetened coconut)
1/4 cup chopped red glace cherries
1/2 teaspoon orange essence (my addition)
Icing (confectioners') sugar, for dusting


Bottom Layer
Heat chocolate in small, heavy saucepan on lowest heat, stirring often, until chocolate is almost melted. Remove from heat. Stir until smooth. Spread evenly in greased 20x20cm (8x8inch) pan. Chill until firm.


Top Layer
Beat eggs and sugar (and orange essence) in medium bowl. Fold in coconut and cherries. Spread evenly over bottom layer. Bake in 175C (350F) oven for about 25 to 30 minutes until set and golden. Let stand in pan on wire rack until cool.
Just before serving, dust with icing sugar. Cuts into 25 squares.

This linky will stay open until 25/10/2011.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Espresso-Cinnamon Cup Custard

Made these Espresso-Cinnamon Cup Custard for dessert. The original recipe in Dorie's book is Lemon Cup Custard. Espresso-Cinnamon is one of the other flavours in "Playing Around" recommended by Dorie.


My kids love it!  As for me, I can get a slight eggy smell, besides the fragrant smell of the espresso. Overall, this is a nice custard to have for dessert. It is not too sweet and is nice when served chilled. 



The texture is silky smooth.



The kids really enjoy the custard.



One more?


And I'm bringing this to a Cookbook Party, hosted by Louise of Months of Edible Celebrations. Louise is celebrating her Blogoversary by throwing a Cookbook Party, and October being the National Cookbook Month! There's a whole list of food celebrations just for the month of October! For full details, hop over to Months of Edible Celebrations. I'm submitting this Cup Custard under the list "Dessert Month"!


Espresso-Cinnamon Cup Custard
(adapted from "Baking From My Home To Yours" by Dorie Greenspan)
2-1/4 cups whole milk
1 cinnamon stick
4 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoon instant espresso powder


GETTING READY :
Have six (6-ounce, 3/4 cups) custard or coffee cups at hand. Put the milk and cinnamon stick in a saucepan and bring just to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat, cover and set aside for 30 minutes so the cinnamon can infuse the milk with its flavor. Reheat the milk before mixing the custard.

GETTING READY TO BAKE :
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a roasting pan with a double thickness of paper towels and put the custard or coffee cups in the pan. Fill a teakettle with water and put it on to boil; when the water boils, turn off the heat.
In a 1-quart glass measuring cup or a heatproof bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together until well blended. Still whisking, strain in about 1/4 cup of the hot milk little by little-this will temper, or warm, the eggs so they won't curdle. Whisking all the while, slowly strain in the remaining milk. Discard the cinnamon stick. Stir in the instant espresso powder.
With a spoon, skim the foam off the top of the custard, then pour the custard into the cups. Very carefully slide the roasting pan into the oven, then pour enough hot water from the teakettle into the roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the cups.
Bake the custards for 40 to 45 minutes, or until they jiggle only in the center when you tap the cups lightly. Transfer the custards to a rack and cool to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.





Saturday, October 15, 2011

Apple Butterscotch Bundt Cake

Another addition to my ever increasing collection of cookbooks, "Cake Simple" recently released, is now on my bookshelf. Authored by Christie Matheson, who co-authored together with Joanne Chang in best selling cookbook "Flour". The first thing that caught my attention is that this book is all about bundt cakes. I love baking bundt cakes, as it looks pretty elegant either plain or frosted. Mostly I prefer them plain as most frostings are sweet. As soon as I received this book a few days ago, this recipe was bookmarked. It is not a very big book, but it is a beautiful book, about 42 recipes printed on thick glossy paper with beautiful photograhps every few pages of so.



There's a whole lot of apples in one cake, 4 cups. I use a mixture of Granny Smith and Red Delicious Apples. When I mixed them into the batter, looks like the batter is barely enough to cover the cake. But not to worry, it bakes up rather nicely. 




While the cake is baking, "cinnamon is in the air!".  Your neighbour would know that you are definitely baking something!  




Overall, this is a nice cake. If you love apples and cinnamon, then you would like this. The butterscotch icing is nice, even though it is very sweet as most icing are, it makes a good icing for this cake. I did reduce the sugar in the cake and when eaten on it's own, the sweetness is just right, but really sweet with the butterscotch icing.



The texture is moist, soft and there's apple chunks in every bite!

I'm sharing this with
Bake with Bizzy at Bizzy B Bakes
Full Plate Thursday at Miz Helen's Country Cottage


And I'm bringing this to a Cookbook Party, hosted by Louise of Months of Edible Celebrations. Louise is celebrating her Blogoversary by throwing a Cookbook Party, and October being the National Cookbook Month! There's a whole list of food celebrations just for the month of October! For full details, hop over to Months of Edible Celebrations. I'm submitting this cake under the list "Apple Month"!



Apple Butterscotch Bundt Cake
(adapted from "Cake Simple" by Christie Matheson)
Serves 12-14
Melted butter for greasing the pan
3 cups (360gm) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the pan
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (I use 1 tsp)
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cups (360ml) canola oil
1 cup (200gm) granulated sugar (I use 140gm)
1/2 cup (110gm) packed brown sugar (I use 80gm)
3 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 cups (500gm) diced peeled apples
1 cup (100gm) walnuts, toasted and chopped


Preheat the oven to 325F (165C/gas 3). Brush the inside of a 12-cup (2.8L) Bundt pan thoroughly with the melted butter and dust it lightly with flour. (Use a pastry brush to help distribute the flour and tap out any excess).
Whisk the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl until thoroughly combined.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whisk the canola oil with the granulated sugar and brown sugar on medium-low speed until thoroughly combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking well after each addition. Whisk in the vanilla. With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour mixture to the oil mixture, whisking until blended. Stir in the apples and walnuts by hand.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, until a cake tester inserted near the center comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then invert the cake onto the rack and let it cool completely. Drizzle the cooled cake with the icing and serve. The cake will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.




Butterscotch Icing :
1/2 cup (110gm) packed brown sugar
1/3 cup (80ml) heavy cream
1/4 cup (57gm) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (93gm) confectioners' sugar (I use 60gm)


In a small nonreactive saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the brown sugar with the cream, butter, and salt, and heat gently, stirring until the sugar and salt have completely dissolved. Transfer the butterscotch mixture to a small bowl and let it cool to room temperature. Whisk in the confectioners' sugar until the icing is smooth.





Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Veal & Olive Ragu with Pappardelle

One of our pasta nights with Rachael Ray's Look + Cook. Sometimes the mind goes blank just thinking about dinner! Pasta to the rescue!







So, I decided to cook Olive Ragu with Pappardelle for our dinner. This recipe calls for Ground Veal, Pappardelle and Pecorino Romano Cheese.  I do not have these three ingredients, I substituted with what I have, Ground Pork, Tagliatelle and Parmesan Cheese. I substituted the Beef Broth by using Homemade Chicken Stock. 


The family really enjoyed this tasty pasta meal. 


And I'm bringing this to a Cookbook Party, hosted by Louise of Months of Edible Celebrations. Louise is celebrating her Blogoversary by throwing a Cookbook Party, and October being the National Cookbook Month! There's a whole list of food celebrations just for the month of October! For full details, hop over to Months of Edible Celebrations. I'm submitting this Pasta under the list "Pasta Month"!

I'm sharing this with "Saturdays with Rachael Ray" at Taste and Tell.

Veal And Olive Ragu with Pappardelle
(adapted from "Look + Cook" by Rachael Ray)
Serves 6
salt
1 pound pappardelle or other wide, flat pasta
2 tablespoons EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil)
1 tablespoon butter
1-1/2 pounds ground veal
black pepper
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 springs of fresh rosemary, leaves removed and finely chopped
1 cup pitted large green olives, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup beef broth
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves (a generous handful)
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese, plus more for passing at the table

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it, then add the pasta, cook to al dente and drain.
While the pasta is cooking, in a large, deep skillet, heat the EVOO over medium-high heat. Add the butter to melt, then add the veal and season with salt and a little pepper. Cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until it's no longer pink, about 5 minutes.
Add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and rosemary and cook for 2 minutes, then stir in the olives and heat through for 1 minute.
Stir in the wine, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan for 1 minute. Stir in the beef broth and simmer for 2 minutes. Stir in the parsley and lemon zest.
Add the drained pasta to the sauce and stir in the pasta and 1/2 cup of cheese. Serve hot with extra cheese.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Caramel Coriander Chicken

I just love stir-fry dishes. They are usually very easy, quick, simple and extremely tasty when eaten hot, right out of the wok onto the serving plate! Most of the preparations are just slicing and cutting, with the sauce premixed in advance before cooking time. Rice is the main food at meal times for us, with two or three dishes to go along with the rice. So I'm constantly looking for new ideas and recipes when it comes to stir-fry. We do have our favourite stir-fry dishes, but even cooking the same food  can be boring! 



I found this recipe in one of the cooking book, "Stir-Fry". This is really simple and easy to prepare. The recipe requires the chicken to be marinated overnight, but I just marinated it in the afternoon and cooked it in the evening. The chicken is first fried, and then stir-fried for a few minutes with the caramel sauce. Since it was only the four of us, I cooked half of the recipe, which was just the right portion. I'm giving the original recipe which serves 4-8, but I think that it is a big portion for 4!


It is sweet, salty with a hint of sourness from the rice vinegar. A lovely dish to go with white rice. This dish is a definite hit at our dinner table. There's no leftovers!


I would definitely cook this again, perhaps a spicier version. I think adding a tablespoon of coarse chilli flakes would be lovely! And more coriander leaves!


I'm sharing this with :
Cookbook Sunday at Mom's Sunday Cafe

And I'm bringing this to a Cookbook Party, hosted by Louise of Months of Edible Celebrations. Louise is celebrating her Blogoversary by throwing a Cookbook Party, and October being the National Cookbook Month! There's a whole list of food celebrations just for the month of October! For full details, hop over to Months of Edible Celebrations. I'm submitting this Caramel Coriander Chicken under the list "Eat Better, Eat Together"!



Caramel Coriander Chicken
(adapted from : Stir Fry)
serves 4-8
2 teaspoons ground turmeric
6 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
2 tablespoons soy sauce
60ml (2fl oz/1/4 cup) Chinese rice wine or sherry
2 egg yolks, beaten
1 kg (2lb 4oz) boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into cubes
60gm (2-1/4 oz / 1/2 cup) plain all-purpose flour
125ml (4 fl oz/ 1/2 cup) oil
90gm (3-1/4oz / 1/2 cup) soft brown sugar
2 very large handfuls coriander (cilantro), chopped, plus extra leaves, to garnish
60ml (2fl oz / 1/4 cup) rice vinegar

  1. Place the turmeric, 2 crushed garlic cloves, the ginger, soy sauce, rice wine, egg yolks, 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon white pepper in a large bowl and mix together well. Add the chicken and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Pour away any excess liquid from the chicken, add the flour and toss to mix well.
  3. Heat a wok until very hot, add 1 tablespoon of oil and swirl to coat. Add  a third of the chicken and stir-fry for 4 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the wok. Cook the other two batches of chicken, adding more oil as necessary. Remove all the chicken from the wok and keep warm.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium, add the remaining oil, brown sugar and remaining garlic. Mix together and then leave for 1-2 minutes, or until the sugar caramelizes and liquefies.
  5. Return the chicken to the wok, and add the coriander and vinegar. Stir gently for 4 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and well coated with the sauce. Garnish with extra coriander leaves.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Chicken Rendang Pizza/Thousand Island Tuna Pizza : Free and Easy Bake-Along #11, Theme - Pizza Nite-In

I have made these two same pizzas for the last couple of times, repeated requests from my kids. Each time when I asked them what pizza they would like me to make, my daughter would request for Rendang Pizza (her favourite) and my son would asked for Thousand Island Tuna Pizza (his favourite). Yes, I did make these a couple of times but never did a post on these pizzas.

So when our baking group's theme for this Bake-Along is "Pizza Nite-In", I find myself baking these again! Both my kids have agreed that on the next pizza baking day, I will decide on the flavour, mommy's turn to choose! Hahaha!


I use the packaged pre-made rendang sauce, and I always use the brand above for making my homemade Rendang Pizza. It is really good, cooked with minced chicken and some sliced onions as a Pizza topping. Over here, in Malaysia, Pizza Hut does serve Rendang Pizza in their menu, which we seldom order, again, the kids get to pick their flavours, and this is not one of them. They have their own favourite flavours over at Pizza Hut!


My homemade version of Rendang Pizza, my family's favourite.


It is really nice!


You would not stop at just one slice! 




Thousand Island Tuna Pizza



Canned tuna in oil is drained and mashed coarsely. Mix with some Thousand Island Sauce, Mayo and Black Pepper. Top with some sliced pieces of canned pineapples, crab stick and onions, scatter generously with Mozzarella cheese, bake and enjoy!



Let's go over to see what my two baking buddies, Lena of Her Frozen Wings and Zoe of Bake For Happy Kids, are having for their "Pizza Nite-In". 

Wai Kitt from hellowaikitt has join us in this Pizza Nite-In Bake-Along. Hop over to see her delicious crispy pizza, a lovely snack anytime of the day!

We will be baking based on another theme "Chocolates and Cherries" next. Feel free to bake anything with Chocolates and Cherries, either fresh cherries, canned cherries, dried cherries, any kind of cherries! We will post that on 20/10, just mention our links in your post and leave a comment in any of our "Chocolate and Cherries" post (mine, Lena's or Zoe's), we will visit you right back! 

I'm sharing this with :
Cookbook Sunday at Mom's Sunday Cafe

And I'm bringing this to a Cookbook Party, hosted by Louise of Months of Edible Celebrations. Louise is celebrating her Blogoversary by throwing a Cookbook Party, and October being the National Cookbook Month! There's a whole list of food celebrations just for the month of October! For full details, hop over to Months of Edible Celebrations. I'm submitting these Pizzas under the list "Pizza Month"!


Pizza Crust
(adapted from : "Bread Machine Kitchen Handbook" by Jennie Shapter)
Makes two 30-cm/12-in Pizzas
280ml/10fl oz/1-1/4 cups water
30ml/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
450gm/1lb/4 cups unbleached white bread flour
7.5ml/1-1/2 tsp salt
2.5ml/1/2 tsp granulated sugar
5ml/1tsp easy bake dried yeast

  1. Pour the water and olive oil into the bread machine pan. If the instructions for your machine specify that the yeast is to be placed in the pan first, reverse the order in which you add the liquid and dry ingredients.
  2. Sprinkle over the flour, ensuring that it covers the liquid. Add the salt in one corner of the bread pan and the sugar in another corner. Make a small indent in the center of the flour, then add the yeast.
  3. Set the bread machine to the dough setting; use basic or pizza dough setting (if available). Press Start. Lightly oil  two pizza pans or baking sheets.
  4. When the dough cycle has finished, remove the dough from the machine and place it on a lightly floured surface. Knock it back (punch it down) gently. If making the larger quantity divide the dough into two equal pieces. Preheat the oven to 220C/425F/Gas 7.
  5. Roll out the pizza dough into two 30cm/12-in rounds. Place in the prepared pans or on the baking sheet. 
(my notes : recipe does not require the crust to be baked before adding the filling. But I prebaked the crust for about 8-10 minutes first, then add on the filling and baked for a further 15 minutes. I made 2 pcs of 10.5in pizzas with this recipe)


Rendang Pizza Topping
(by kitchen flavours)
1 packet (about 200gm) rendang sauce
400gm minced chicken
1 medium onions (cut into thin wedges)
2 tbsp cooking oil
mozzarella cheese (as much as you want!)

Heat oil in non-stick cooking pan. Add in the minced chicken and stir until chicken is no longer pink and cooked, about 8-10 minutes. Add in onions and rendang sauce. Stir for  about 5 minutes. There is no need to add any salt, as the rendang sauce is already salty. You may taste and add some salt, to your preference.
When prebaked crust is ready, scatter rendang chicken all over. Top with mozarella cheese and baked in preheated oven at 220C for about 15 minutes, until crust is golden brown and cheese melts. Enjoy!


Thousand Island Tuna Pizza Topping
(by kitchen flavours)
1 small can (about 180gm) tuna chunks in oil, drained and mashed coarsely
3 slices canned pineapple rings (cut into chunks)
5-6 pieces crabsticks (cut each into 4 pcs)
1 small onions (cut into big chunks)
4 tbsp Thousand Island Dressing
2 tbsp Mayonnaise
dash of coarse black pepper
3 tbsp tomato puree
Mozzarella cheese

Mix tuna, Thousand Island Dressing, mayonnaise and coarse black pepper into a medium-sized bowl. When prebaked crust is ready, spread crust with tomato puree. Scatter tuna mixture, pineapples, crabsticks and onions all over. Top with Mozzarella cheese. Bake in preheated oven at 220C for about 15 minutes until crust is golden brown and cheese melts. Enjoy!



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