Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Ma Po Tofu 麻婆豆腐

Lyanne's almost 8 weeks.. by this Wednesday she'll be. She's following her sister's footsteps by sucking on her thumb! Haih! Why don't they ever take on the pacifier instead?? I'd prefer them to be on the pacifier rather than the thumb, and the right thumb to be exact. Lyanne can smile now, when we talk to her, she'll react by smiling. Meanwhile Lydia is trying to carry her.. she can't of course! When we hold Lyanne in our arms, she'll try to put her arms under her, as if she's carrying her. It's cute.

Ma Po Tofu. After reading on the internet, I found that the origin of this dish came from a granny who is a leper. Hence the name, Leper Granny Tofu.

This is my version. A little too dark, due to my aged bean paste.. I haven’t been using the bean paste for quite some time, and once the bottle’s opened, it starts to age and darken. And it’s not that easy to find hot bean paste in Malaysia, so I combine chili paste and bean paste to make up for it.
Not fiery hot, sorry to disappoint chili fans.

250 soft tofu, cubed
½ cup minced pork /chicken
1 shallot, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
¾ Tbsp fine bean paste (tau cheong)
1 tsp ground chili paste (cili giling, in Malay)
2 Tbsp chili sauce ( Maggi, Kimball or Heinz type)
½ tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp sesame oil
1 cup water mixed with 1 tsp cornstarch
2 Tbsp oil

1. Heat wok on medium and put in oil. Saute chopped garlic and shallot until fragrant.
2. Add in bean paste and chili paste, stir until fragrant.
3. Put in minced pork. Stir until pork is cooked.
4. Put in cornstarch mixture, sesame oil, chili sauce, salt and sugar to taste.
5. When gravy has thickened, put in cubed tofu and simmer for another half minute.
6. Dish up and serve. Sprinkle on some chopped green onions for decoration.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

UFO Bun 飞碟面包

Whenever I make breads from whatever overseas site, I always have to reduce the water content by 10-15%. If not the dough will not be pliable… very sticky and can’t be formed. Maybe it’s due to the type of bread flour or the humidity in Malaysia.. I dunno..but reducing the water a little bit sure make things better

The site shows that this bun has filling… but I can’t seem to find out what it is. So, I omitted it. Hub said, the topping itself is tasty enough, no need to add in filling. He likes it.. he likes it.. kekekeke

Bun (A)
160 gm bread flour
40 gm low protein flour
1 tsp yeast
½ tsp salt
1 Tbsp milk powder
40gm sugar
30gm egg
90gm water (I used 80gm only, add in by the teaspoon if u can still handle it)
30gm butter

Topping: (B)
50gm egg
40gm sugar
1 drop vanilla essence
30gm low protein flour
¼ tsp baking powder
10gm ground almond
45gm melted butter

1. Mix everything in (A) together except butter. Knead until dough is smooth and stretchy. (took me half hour by hand, I don't have a bread machine). Knead in butter until well incorporated.
2. Cover and leave to proof until double in size.
3. Punch down dough and divide into 6 portions. Roll each portion into a ball and place on a piece of baking paper, about 5 inch diameter.
4. Let proof until double again.
5. For topping, melt butter and mix with ground almonds.
6. Beat eggs with sugar until sugar dissolves. Add in vanilla essence.
7. Sift flour with baking powder.
8. Combine (5), (6) and (7).
9. Chill until consistency turns thick.
10. When dough balls have doubled, pipe topping starting from the centre of dough, in spiral pattern until it almost covers the top of bun. When baked, the topping batter will later melt down the sides.
11. Bake in 200C preheated oven for 15 minutes.

(From what u can see of my buns, they are a bit burnt, I did 200C for 7 minutes, and they browned, so I quickly turned down to 170C for another 10 minutes, but yet.. **sigh** still brown, very brown. The next time around, I’ll go 180C for 15-20 minutes, it depends on your oven)

Source: http://www001.upp.so-net.ne.jp/e-pan/recipe/recipe.htm

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Neapolitan Yogurt Cheesecake 三色 酸乳芝士蛋糕

Had this idea of making a chilled neapolitan cheesecake. Tried searching online for one, but couldn't find one. I can only find baked ones.. So, I created this for my mom.

I used yogurt for the top layer, so that the cake would be lighter on the tummy.

After tasting this (after my mom cut the cake, of course), I can say, I'm satisfied with it. Recieved good comments on it. Saying it was light and refreshing, not too filling and overpowering. I like the slightly bitter chocolate sponge (bitter like dark choc), it's a good contrast to the sweet fillings.

So, if u are looking for a light cheesecake, try this. If u want a very strong cheese smell cake or prefer a denser one... skip this.

Chocolate Sponge
4 eggs
100gm sugar
70gm flour
20gm cocoa powder
50gm corn oil

1. Preheat oven at 180C. Line a 10” x 10” shallow square pan with paper.
2. Beat eggs and sugar until light and fluffy, about triple in volume
3. Sift cocoa powder together with flour.
4. Fold into (2). Mix well.
5. Fold in corn oil.
6. Pour into baking pan and bake for 15-20 minutes.
7. Remove from oven and remove paper lining from cake.
8. Let cool and cut cake to fit cake ring. (I used 8 inch ring)
9. Place cut out cake in cake ring onto cake board and freeze.

Vanilla Cream Cheese layer
250 gm cream cheese (room temperature)
40gm sugar
100 gm plain yogurt
1 tsp vanilla essence
100 gm whipping cream (whipped)
1 Tbsp gelatin
60 ml water.

1. Put gelatin and water into a heat proof bowl. Double boil until gelatin dissolves. Let cool to room temperature.
2. Beat cream cheese and sugar until light and creamy.
3. Add in yogurt and vanilla essence. Mix well.
4. Fold in whipped cream. Mix well.
5. Drizzle in dissolved gelatin and mix well.
6. Pour cheese filling onto frozen choc sponge. Level surface and place cake into the fridge, not freezer.

Strawberry Yogurt layer.
150gm strawberries
2 Tbsp sugar
420gm strawberry flavoured yogurt ( I used 3 cups of Dutch Lady yogurt)
100gm whipping cream
1 ½ Tbsp gelatin
60ml water

1. Chop strawberries and macerate with sugar until strawberries soften and bleed. Puree with a fork.
2. Bloom gelatin in water.
3. Bring whipping cream to a boil and pour onto gelatin mixture. Stir to make sure gelatin is dissolved.
4. Mix yogurt with pureed strawberries.
5. Pour (3) into (4) and mix well.
6. Pour (5) onto set cheese layer. Chill cake for 5 hours before removing from cake ring.

Monday, February 9, 2009

2 Cakes and 2 Birthdays

I'm grabbing every opportunity to make birthday cakes to practise cake decorating.
Hannah's birthday was yesterday, and I made her a cake with strawberry filling, her favourite.
During Lydia's 1st birthday, she kept on telling me how good the cake was, so I made the same cake for her birthday, with different decoration, definately.

I made some mistakes, should've made the words using the same colours for the same letter. Due to space restraints, the words looked like scattered candies, rather than words, except for the capital H.

The kids couldn't wait to have the candies...

After Hannah's birthday party, it's my mom's turn.
Actually, her birthday's 2 weeks back, but I was in confinement, so the candle blowing was postponed to today. Mom didn't want "publicity", so she didn't want to bring her cake to KFC and blow it together with Hannah. We did it after the party, just among family members.

Neapolitan Yogurt Cheesecake, a personal creation.

The cake 's side was a bit crumbled... logistics fault. He he!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Lyanne's Full Moon

We didn't really celebrate it this time.. cos her full moon is during Chinese New Year. U know la, Chinese New Year is difficult to get restaurants.

As for Lydia last time, we had a lunch reception in Kampar, and a week later, another dinner in Kuala Kangsar.

We didn't do the head shaving thing or other chinese belief practices, as we believe that my daughter is pure and clean even from the day she is born, no need so wash away the bad stuff.

Her life is in Gods' hands and we rest assured that God will lead the way for her.

So, this time, I prepared gift packs to "reply" the gifts that were given to her by friends and family.
I didn't order, cos, I don't want to force myself to deliver everything on the same day, plus, during CNY season, people may not be at home. And the ordered stuff cannot be kept. So, if I have extras, what to do with it? That's why I decided to DIY.

What's in the box------- Pickled ginger, pickled papaya, red eggs, Angku agar-agar and cake (choc or sponge cups(2 pandan, 2 coffee, and 2 orange. The orange ones shrunk, dunno why, but still tasted ok))

The pickled stuff were prepared my my confinement lady before she went back for CNY (she was off a week earlier), and I didn't want to order traditional angkus, as they cannot be kept and I don't think many people will want to eat them. Agar ones are better.

I started giving away the packs since the 3rd week, few days before CNY, like my colleagues, as I knew they'd be away for a week. And on the 1st day CNY I gave away gifts to friends and relatives on my side of the family, as I went back for CNY on day one. Hubbys' side mostly were given away 2 days b4 CNY. And by today, the last 2 packs, done! Why overdue? Cos I can only see them today.

It may be time consuming or tiring to prepare these stuff DIY. KK is not a place where I can get Ayamas or other shops to order full moon gift packs. Altho there are people taking orders here, but it's troublesome for me in the end, in the event of delivering. I'd rather DIY, so that I can take my own sweet time.

Lyanne's been good so far, feeding and sleeping well. Thank God!
And my confinement has come to an end! Woohooo!!!!!!

New Youtube Channel

Now that my home's internet speed is upgraded, I can make more videos!
This is my new channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgW4rIH3Gg6Lc8v4G0QlqgA
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