Friday, January 30, 2015

Melt-in-your-mouth Butter Cookies 即融牛油曲奇


Bi-lingual | 双语版

I had no intention to bake for this Chinese New Year initially, as I wanted to focus on my family and career plus to have a little extra time for my midnight sewing. But since it's long holiday thanks to Thaipusan and Federal day in the city I live, I have 4 days of off day. Since I have completed my CNY seeing wish list for my little girl, why not bake some goodies? 

I made few varieties of butter cookies this time. Nothing fancy (I know sheep cookies is an Internet phenomenon..), but these little muchies are really melt in your mouth kind of soft and my little ones are loving them. I'm sure they are suitable for old folks too which make them perfect CNY gift!






Here's how...

Ingredients:

Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Baking Time: 12-15 minutes 
Serving: about 40 cookies each recipe

Original Butter Cookies
• 130gm Unsalted butter at room temperature, cut into cubes 
• 190gm super fine flour
• 10gm corn flour
• 50gm icing sugar (reduced from 70gm)
• 50gm/2 medium eggs, beaten
 
B) Chocolate cookies
• 130gm Unsalted butter at room temperature, cut into cubes
• 180gm super fine flour
• 10gm corn flour 
• 15gm cocoa powder
• 50gm icing sugar (reduced from 80gm)
• 50gm/2 medium eggs, beaten


The Making:
1. Sprinkles some flour over a baking tray, set the oven to 180°c.

2. Using a mixer, mix butter with the sugar on high speed until turns pale and fluffy.

3. Slowly add the egg liquid into the mixture and mix well, followed by the flour (add in few batches). You may add the green tea / cocoa powder now.

4. Once the mixture is well mixed, scope them into a piping bag, pipe them onto the tray to form a wreath shape, or any shape as you wish.

5. Bake for 12-15 minutes until the cookies is golden brown.

Let cold and store in airtight containers. These cookies shall be good to keep for 3 weeks.


我家小瓜超爱吃牛油饼干,我原本没打算烘新年饼干,但反正有几天的假期,就给烤炉热一热吧。

超容易但超好吃的,要管成花圈状 (丹麦饼干就是这个卖相!)也行,简单的球状也行,就随你意吧。

A)原味牛油曲奇
•130gm无盐牛油(室温),切成立方体
•200克超细粉
•70gm砂糖
•50克/ 2中型鸡蛋,搅均


B)巧克力牛油饼干
130gm无盐牛油(室温),切成立方体
•180gm超细粉
• 10gm 粟粉
•15gm 可可粉
• 80克 糖粉 (我减至50gm)
•50克/ 2中型鸡蛋,搅均

做法:
1.撒一面粉在烤盘上,将烤箱预热至180℃。

2.使用搅拌机,用高速搅拌奶油与糖,直到奶油发白和蓬松。

3.慢慢将鸡蛋液加入混合物,拌匀后再加入面粉和粟粉您现在可以在此时添加可可粉。

4.把混合物舀到piping管袋,管成花环形状。

5.烘烤12-15分钟,直到饼干呈金黄色即可取出。

待冷却后,存放在密闭容器中。这些饼干可以存放约三周。


Wednesday, January 28, 2015

{Breadmaker} Almond Hokkaido Loaf Bread, Ultra Soft!


The kiddos had been begging for soft bread for them to pack to school past few days - I had been giving them cookies and cereals with fruits for thinking they may be tired of bread, apparently they didn't. :)

So I decided to try out another new recipe this time. Hokkaido bread, which is even softer in texture with the additional milk powder used. I knew it would be nice, but did not expect it to be this good. Absolutely store bake quality.

I used "Stuffed bread" recipe (menu 8 for Panasonic machine), but after the 55 minutes kneading, instead of taking the dough out for shaping / filling, I just let it stayed inside the pan, brush with some egg liquid and sprinkled with rich amount of almond flakes on top and continue baking.

The result? Ultra soft and fluffy bread,  like a feather-light pillow. 


A week later, I decided to make some sandwiches for lunch and this fluffy Hokkaido bread was the perfect choice. I replaced the almond flakes with organic sunflower and flaxseeds, making it a protein rich bread.

I had the crust layer, if only I managed to shot the middle layer to show how soft and fluffy they are. The kiddos even enjoy  eating the bread as is.


Preparation Time: 10 Minutes
Baking Time: 2 Hours 15 min
Serving size: 500gm loaf / 6-8 slices

Ingredients:

• 215g organic bread flour / High protein flour 
• 1.5 tbsp / 12g milk powder
• 2 tbsp / 25g granulated or brown sugar
• 1/4 tablespoon salt
• 110ml water at 5c°(I just added some ice cubes)
• 30g unsalted butter
• 1/2 of a medium egg, beaten 
• 11/2 teaspoon instant dry yeast
• 30g chocolate chips / chunks 

For topping:
• 1/2 egg for brushing 
• 20g almond flakes 

The Method:
1. add all ingredient into bread pan, except yeast in the yeast dispenser.

2. Select menu "8" (for Panasonic BM) or Stuffed Bread recipe on your bread maker. Press "start".

3. When the dough is ready and you heard the beep beep sound (55  minutes later), open the lid (DO NOT PRESS STOP!), brush egg liquid onto the top of the dough, sprinkle with almond flakes. Then closes the lid and press "Start" to continue baking.

The second fermentation will begin and it shall take about 1h15m to complete. Let the bread cold on a rack for about 10-20min before consuming.

Enjoy!

Friday, January 23, 2015

One Pot Chicken Rice 简易饭锅鸡饭


I was kind of lazy lately (that explains the lack of update on my blog) and have been cooking mostly one-pot dishes. Today I'm sharing a really simple rice cooker chicken rice, easy to prepare yet delicious, my boy was hopping in excitement when he smell the nice aroma steaming out from the rice cooker.



Served with simple anchovies veggie soup. Absolutely MSG and nonsense-free meal.

Preparation Time: 10min 
Cooking Time: 30min
Serving for: approximate 3-4 pax

Ingredients:

For the Chicken & Marinate
• 4 chicken drumsticks, deboned and cut into strips (you may used chicken cutlets too, but I prefer to use drumstick for this meal as it has softer texture)
• 1 carrot, cut into big cubes
• 1 potato, cut into big cubes (I skipped this as my potatoes had sprouted.. Sigh)
• 2 cloves garlic, chopped 
• 2 tablespoons premium soy sauce
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
• 1 teaspoon Shao Xin rice wine (optional, but this certainly enhances the taste of the meat)
• few drops of sesame oil 
• a dash of pepper
• 1 tablespoon corn flour 

For the Rice
• 2 cups rice & water

The Making:
1. Clean the chicken cutlets, rub evenly with salt and marinate with all the ingredients and coat with corn flour last. Let it marinates for at least 30 minutes. 

2. Before you start cooking the chicken, cook your rice with normal water level.


3. Heat up 2 tablespoon of cooking oil on a wok, sauté the garlic till fragrance, then add the carrot and potato cubes. Cover the wok and let it simmers for about 5 minutes till soften.

4. Toss in the chicken strips, stir fry till the chicken is cooked (turns pale color), add a cup of water and let it simmer for about 10 minutes on low heat.

5. About 10 minutes before the rice is cooked (just estimate), pour the chicken and sauce into the rice cooker. Cover all over the rice and close the lid to let it continue cooking. Do Not Stir.

Ta-da, the steaming hot chicken rice is ready. Mix the rice with the chicken before serving and enjoy your tummy warming meal. 


Monday, January 19, 2015

{Breadmaker recipe} Chocolate Raisins Bread Loaf


I have just tested a new easy & yummy bread recipe that I though I ought to share. This is one that my kiddos really really like and I have been baking this twice a week. Hope you have not grow bored of yet another bread recipe,  I am some how hooked on the convenience of having an all-in-one bakeware. :)

It's just a simple soft bread recipe but so soft and fluffy as usual.



Preparation: 5 minutes
Baking time: 4 hours 10 min (Soft bread) / 2 hours (Rapid bread)


Ingredients:

For Soft Bread:
• 250gm high gluten flour / high protein flour (you may used organic unbleached flour)
• 15gm unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
• 2 tablespoon / 24gm granulated sugar (I used organic brown sugar) 
• 1 teaspoon / 5gm salt 
• 1 tablespoon / 6gm milk powder 
• 190ml water at 5°c (I added 2 ice cubes to normal drinking water)
• 30gm cut dark chocolate (or chocolate chips will do)
• 1 tablespoon organic raisins 
• 1 teaspoon / 2.8gm instant dry yeast 
• 30gm cut dark chocolate (or chocolate chips will do)
• 1/4 cup organic raisins 

For Rapid Bread:
• 280 gm high gluten flour / high protein flour (you may used organic unbleached flour)
• 10 gm unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
• 2 tablespoon / 24gm granulated sugar (I used organic brown sugar) 
• 1 teaspoon / 5gm salt 
• 1 tablespoon / 6gm milk powder 
• 210ml water at 5°c (I added 2 ice cubes)
• 1.5 teaspoon / 4.2 gm instant dry yeast 
• 30gm cut dark chocolate (or chocolate chips will do)
• 1/4 cup organic raisins 



The Making:
1. Put all ingredients into your bread-maker as per the order list (including chocolate), put yeast in the yeast compartment and raisins in the nuts compartment, select "Soft Bread" or "Rapid Bread" recipe accordingly (please note I am using Panasonic machine, the outcome & time may different depending on the machine you used). 

If your breadmaker don't have separate compartment for yeast, just add the yeast into the pan but endure it is separated from the sugar and salt.

2. Let the breadmaker does its work until done. 

That's it, you may let the bread cool on a wired rack for about 30 minutes before enjoying, or store it in an airtight container if you are only eating it the next day.


Useful Tips..
• Texture of bread made using high gluten flour is softer and fluffier compared to using normal bread flour. However do note that some kids shall avoid gluten in their diet. Please consult your pediatrician as I am not specialist in this area.
• You may use Timer function if you selected "Soft Bread", so you can schedule to have the bread ready in the morning.

{Breadmaker Recipe} Soy Milk Bread 面包机食谱:豆奶面包



Bi-Lingual | 中英对照


I wanted to improve the nutrition value of the bread that I have been almost daily, so decided to make some slight changes by using organic soy milk with the soft bread recipe, and it turns out great! Soft and have a light scent of soy milk.


The perfect loaf.

Preparation: 5 minutes
Baking time: 2 hours 
Serving for: 500gm loaf



Ingredients:

• 280 gm unbleached bread flour ror high gluten flou
• 15 gm unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
• 2 tablespoon / 24gm granulated sugar (I used organic brown sugar) 
• 1 teaspoon / 5gm salt 
• 1 tablespoon / 6gm milk powder 
• 210ml multi-grain soy milk (I added 3 ice cubes)
• 1.5 teaspoon / 4.2 gm instant dry yeast 
• 1/4 cup organic raisins / dried cranberries 



The Making:
1. Put all ingredients into your bread-maker as per the order list, put yeast in the yeast compartment and raisins in the nuts compartment, select "Rapid Bread" recipe accordingly (please note I am using Panasonic machine, the outcome & time may different depending on the machine you used). 

If your breadmaker don't have separate compartment for yeast, just add the yeast into the pan but ensure it is separated from the sugar and salt.

2. Let the breadmaker does its work until done. 

That's it, you may let the bread cool on a wired rack for about 30 minutes before enjoying, or store it in an airtight container if you are only eating it the next day.


Useful Tips..
• you may replace soy milk with fresh milk too.
• Timer function is not available with "Rapid Bread" option. 



备:5
烘烤时间:2
Size 500克面包

主料:

• 280克未漂白高筋粉或面包
• 15克黄油,切成小方
• 2汤匙/ 24gm砂糖(我用有机红糖)
• 1茶匙/ 5gm
• 1汤匙/ 6gm奶粉
• 210毫升多谷物豆浆(我加了3块)
• 1.5茶匙/ 4.2干酵母
• 1/4杯葡萄干有机/蔓越莓干

1.将所有材料放入面包,加酵母葡萄干有机/蔓越莓干,确保酵母糖盐分离。选择快速面包项, Start. (注:我用的松下面包机,不同的面包机可能不同的项)
2.让面包机操作 (2时)立即取
3. 让面包冷却约30立刻可以享, 或将其存放在密封的容器中



贴心提..
多谷物豆用普通豆鲜奶取代
快速面包不可用时器功能

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

{Birthday Special} LEGO Cupcakes for my Little Boy!


Aren't these little LEGO Cuppies looking oh-so-cute? Custom designed for my little boy to celebrate his birthday with the classmates.


This special Yellow Lego Man is for my handsome who is turning 6.

Special mix of pastel green & yellow butter cream.


Some Lego girls too for the little girls in his class.



The bare Lego figurines before I painted the facial expressions.


I shape them using these mould I got during a group buy and let the fondant get harden in the fridge compartment for 30 minutes before removing them.

Painted by hand..

Then I added my sugar-reduced butter cream.. you may get the recipe for the butter cream icing here.

Finished them off with LEGO man or Lego block topping. Which is your favorite? Mine is definitely the Bruce Lee look-alike (the yellow Lego man). 

These little cuppies are really easy to make once you make friends with fondant icing.


Instead of party bags which often contain candies or unnecessary gift, I prepared these pencil cases with custom print message, "Ethan is 6!". Simple preparation, nothing lavish or OTT.
I showed my little boy the cuppies in the morning. Him and the little sister were super excited and requested to have one each. Luckily I have prepared extra so they happily munched off their Lego cupcakes while on the way to school. Best reward for a night of hardwork = their happy smiles and hugs. :)


Happy birthday my little E.
Be brave. 
Be happy. 
Be curious. 
Just be yourself.

Love you always, mommy. ❤️



Pss.. need more idea on cake decoration? Why not check out the following:
Special Lego Cake
Sweetheart and Ballerina Cuppies
Rainbow Cake
Cupcakes in Ice Cream Cones

Sunday, January 11, 2015

{Birthday Special} The Lego Cake!


It's January 2015, which marks my 6th year of motherhood. This time 6 years ago I was heavily pregnant with a huge belly, counting days for my baby boy to pop up. How time flies.

Anyway, my eldest is turning 6 and I decided to make him a themed birthday cake with his favorite toy of all time... LEGO! He started with Duplo when he was 1yo and moved to Lego and finally addicted to Lego Technical now, I couldn't think of a theme better than Lego. 

It's a simple Madeira cake (essentially a moist lemon butter cake) molded into a Lego island, with captain E in the center. 



The happy Lego man. I molded the figurine by hand and used a spaghetti to hold the body parts in place, then painted the face with a brush and "super black" fondant coloring. I tried using Lego man jelly mold but the icing cracked. Lucky my handmade Lego man fondant figurine turned out ok.

I made these Lego blocks and figurine a day earlier so they will be dry and firm for assembling. I was playing with different arrangement possibilities on a baking sheet. You see, I made these blocks not knowing how the final cake design would be, so I needed to figure it out and I was finally satisfied with this rainbow color steps.


Preparing to ice the cake with my homemade buttercream and the basic gears. You may get the buttercream icing recipe HereIt's my failed-proof recipe.

The iced cake smoothen with a palette knife. This step is essential to ensure a smooth surface to lay the fondant on. I let it set in the fridge for about half an hour while I work on the fondant layer.
The fondant layer for the cake top layer using "avocado" green. I like my new rolling pin which is non sticky, designed for fondant decoration.

All packed in box, ready to go!

Fondant cake decoration really requires lots of practice and tools. I would suggest you take up a proper course if you want to start fondant decoration at home. As for me, I had many rounds of trials and errors and some good friends who had shared useful tips with me, for that I am gladful and hopefully I can continue to design more birthday cakes for myduo every year till they finally grow bored of it. :)

That's it, I gotta go as the birthday party is about to start soon. My handsome Lego fan is waiting.

Ciao!


Friday, January 9, 2015

{Breadmaker Recipe} Pumpkin Seed Honey Loaf


Weekend approaching, why not have some healthy breakfast?

Pumpkin seeds with honey bread loaf is one easy bake with the help of breadmaker this is super easy. You may replace the pumpkin seeds with any other nuts or seeds of your choice, maple nuts or sunflower seeds would be a good option too.




Preparation Time: 10 Minutes
Baking Time: 4 Hours
Serving size: 500gm loaf / 6-8 slices


Ingredients:

• 250g organic High Gluten  
• 15g unsalted butter
• 2 tbsp brown sugar
• 1 tbsp milk powder
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 tbsp raw honey diluted in 180ml water at 5c°
• 1 teaspoon instant dry yeast
• 20g organic pumpkin seed 



The Making:

1. Mix all ingredient (except yeast and pumpkin seed) in the bread container as per display order, pour the honey water around the perimeter of the pan. Add yeast in the yeast dispenser and sunflower seed in the nut compartment.

2. Select "soft bread" function (or of equivalent on your machine, I used a Panasonic) and start. It shall takes 4 hours 20 min. 

That's it. I set mine to timer mode and enjoy a fresh loaf the next morning :) 

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Mini Cheese & Chicken Floss Buns


The kids really liked the cheese buns I made yesterday, so I decided to make another batch, but using muffin pan instead of the cake pan.

They turned out wonderful.
The Cheese "muffin"
The Chicken Floss buns that looked like Pau.

Super fluffy...

The making... My favorite farmhouse cheddar cheese block never fails me. 

Refer to recipe and bread making tips in my precious posting here.

Even my girl who does not usually like bread cannot resist this cheesy treat. Chomped down the whole cheese bun while kept telling me it's delicious.  

Go ahead, try it. You'll love it. :)


Friday, January 2, 2015

Easy Peasy Cheese & Herb Buns


Ever since I've got the baker-maker, I have been diligently baking and trying out different recipes almost every night. The kids love the fresh bread and so do we. Smell of fresh loaf in the morning is just irresistible.

Yesterday while window shopping, we walked pass a bakery and saw the cheese bread, ahh.. My boy's favorite. So I decided to give it a try and it turned out beautifully!


So soft and fluffy like a pillow.

Little guy helped me brushing the egg liquid 

Then happily added the shredded cheese.

Ready to make some? Here's how.

Preparation: 10 + 10 minutes
Waiting time: 45 + 15 minutes 
Baking time: 15 minutes 

Ingredients:

* previously I wrongly stated sugar measurement as 24gm, adjusted. Sorry!
Bread dough
• 280gm high gluten flour / high protein flour (you may used organic flour)
• 50gm unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
• 3 tablespoon / 36gm granulated sugar (I used organic brown sugar) 
• 1 teaspoon / 5gm salt 
• 2 tablespoon / 12gm milk powder 
• 1 medium egg
• 160ml water at 5°c (I added 2 ice cubes)
• 1 teaspoon / 2.8gm instant dry yeast 

Topping:
• 1 egg, beaten (for brushing)
• 1 cup shredded cheedar cheese (approximate)


The Making:
1. Prepare the bread dough in your bread-maker as per the order list, put yeast in the yeast compartment, select "bread dough" recipe and it shall requires about 1 hour. 

If you are making without a breadmaker, add all ingredients into a mixer (make sure you add the yeast last and it shall not touched the sugar or salt), knead into a dough using the K attachment.

2. Cover the dough with a clean tower and let it rise for 45 minutes, or like me, leave it overnight in a freezer and it will rise to perfection by next morning.

It shall rise to double the original size and with a smooth surface. When pressed gently with a finger it will bounced back quickly (instead of remain sunken)

3. On a clean surface, scatter some bread flour and cut the dough into 8 balls of equal size. Place them in a bread / baking pan with about 2cm apart (prior to that, brush some cooking oil or melted butter over the base and side of the pan to avoid sticking).

4. Cover the dough with a tower and let it rise for another 15 minutes for second rising.

5. Preheat the oven to 150°c.

6. Brush some egg liquid over the bread dough and add a generous amount of shredded cheddar cheese. Sprinkle some oregano leaves if you like.

6. Bake for 15 minutes until golden brown. Your kitchen will be filled with the aromatic cheesy smell that is too good to resist. But resist, you must. Wait for at least 15 minutes for the bread to cold down before eating.

That's it, easy peasy gourmet bread...

Happy baking!



This is the different of the dough before & after I left them overnight in the fridge. 

Useful Tips..
• if ambient temperature is above 26°c, reduce water level by 10ml (or the bread may be too moist).
• you may omit or substitute cheese with seeds of your choice, but the melted cheese really smell too nice.
• leaving the dough in the fridge overnight helps to slowdown the rising process.