Woman's Weekly: Chocolate Temptations

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I know i've been MIA in the blog world...in fact i've been MIA in the internet world for some time now *awkward smile* ermmm been busy with Eid, then i had company training in Singapore ( i was recently recruited) for about a week then i had to rush finish my MBA assignment and in between i had to cater for our office presentation for JKR (one of Malaysian Government body). well i didn't cook or anything i just out sourced it and it was only for 60 people. i don't have the time to do it all on my own *sigh* but anyway from my 'break' i'm still lazy to cook...oh yeah did i mentioned that i had food poisoning and still recovering? yeah there's that too.

heheehhe and with all that i'm still in the LAZY mood so for this N3 i'd like to feature a  couple of recipes from Women's Magazine Malaysian edition May 2010. I've tried it and its WONDERFULLY FANTASTIC! heeheh well simply put I liked it and my family loves it too so I thought that it is worth mentioning/ recommending it here. if you have the magazine, by all means try it other wise have a looksie here I've scanned it and i'm posting it here hehehe (it really shows that i am that lazy) lol

My Fave Products (Food & things alike)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Salam Ramadhan my Muslim friends. i know i should probably post about ramadhan dish or desserts...the truth is that this ramadhan i feel so lazy to cook, that and also because i am now house sitting for my parents....its one of those thing when you're not in your own turf you just don't have the mood (well mainly coz i'm not familiar with mom's kitchen equipment since she renovate her kitchen a while ago)

So anyway for this N3 i thought that i just share with you my favorite products...products that we keep buying coz we love it (rather than keep this blog idle for a month)....ok the 1st on the list is :

First Pride Chicken Nugget (obviously this is not my pic credit to the owner) i love this nugget its exactly like McD's nuggets...its by Mac Food Services and when i search the net, i think it has something to do with McDonals...i believe it coz the nugget is EXACTLY like it! so don't buy your nuggets @ McD buy these uncooked ones..its cheaper!

Beryl's Chocolate Compound. I love Beryl's chocolate for cooking and for eating! they are Good quality chocolate. For cooking/baking they make your food taste better and their retail chocolates are extensive too (i live near its factory) and i've tried all of its production i love it....they sell it about 10% cheaper @ their factory so perhaps if you are interested you can drop by. They have 2 factories one in Seri Kembangan and the other (new factory) is in Bangi. They also have a chocolate house in KL.Another plus side is its Malaysian !
p/s: compare to the commercial cooking chocolate Tulip, Beryl's are way better!

Kenwood mixer. I absolutely love this mixer/brand as it is sturdy! I have exactly like this one at home and once it fell of the kitchen counter while i was kneading/mixing bread mixture. i think its a good 2.5 feet - 3 feet high fall. i almost cried and panicked, it only suffers from a hairline crack but it is still working as it is suppose to be, thank God! its still my trusted Betty i love it!
Tatura Butter (unsalted). This is probably the best butter I've ever consumed. its creamy and light at the same time..you just have to try to know what i'm talking about. Unfortunately i only use this butter on special occasion as it is freaking expensive for a daily baking routine. But i do have a fall back butter....that is quite OK and way far cheaper in some shops they were sold only RM2.9 but in average it is more or less RM3.50 still way more cheaper than tatura that sells around RM10 and above

Saf Instant Yeast. This is probably the best instant yeast ever! it never failed me before and its really fast acting yeast unlike Mauripan which is also Ok but i find it takes more time than saf instant. My bread always looks fluffy and soft, yes i always look for this brand when ever i want to bake bread

ok i guess thats all for now....my sandpaper throat is killing me and i think i need to rest or take a nap or something....*sigh* so bye for now...

Food for Kids: Oreo Medallion Pancake.

Friday, July 22, 2011

This is a very clever way to jazz up your ordinary pancake and the best part is KIDS WILL ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!

My children is a very picky eaters....hmmm they would eat almost everything but not the same thing example: if i make them pancake today they won't eat them again next morning. this attitude my children have is a nuisance to me coz i would have to think all the different ways to serve the 'same' recipe to them. you get what i'm trying to say here? so you can imagine me cracking my brains just to get them eat. my inspiration for 'creative' kids cooking mostly were from Gourmet-mom-on-the-go she's damn creative and i love her ideas you should check her blog up!

But this one was my sister's idea. she told me that she made fried oreo using tempura batter and serve them as snacks with ice cream. For me i'm never good with tempura batter it always ended up soaking more oil then it should but it does give me an idea. Instead using tempura batter i use pancake batter. Genius!
Its so simple...all you need is store bought pancake - i use pillsbury buttermilk pancake and oreos. dump the cookie in the pancake batter then pan fry them as you would with pancake! How simple is that? the result is horrifyingly addictive. the cookies will be soft almost cake like in the center of the pancake batter. i made a lot of those my kids ate them up like there is no tomorrow. You can eat it plain or with your favorite ice cream.

frozen food tips

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

complete packed cottage pie . storing in ziplock bag is a good idea coz you can seal it then mark the dates and label it. otherwise a simple plastic would suffice but you'll need to seal it with a heat sealer.

Freeze Well Recipe: Cottage Pie Lasagna

Monday, July 11, 2011

Fasting month is coming and I am amp-ed up for my rainy days....hahahaha well not so much of rainy days but more of lazy days especially when you'd have to wake up at 4am to prepare a meal for 'Sahur'

what is Sahur? Suhoor (سحور lit. of the dawn), also called Sehri, Sahari and Sahur in other languages, is an Islamic term referring to the meal consumed early in the morning by Muslims before fasting, sawm, in daylight hours during the Islamic month of Ramadan. The meal is eaten before the fajr or dawn. When its in the weeeeeee hours in the morning, most often then not you'd feel the lazy bones in you and sometime you even over slept and have not enough time to cook anything from scratch (i know some of us did either pre-cook or get the ingredients ready to cook the night before but even that i sometimes failed to do coz too tired from cooking 'breaking fast meals') so this recipe is perfect for that lazy or slipped up moments you might have (i know i always do).

For this recipe you only need about 10minutes for baking time (probably less if you pre-thawed and store it in the fridge the night before) coz the dish is already cooked, all you need is to brown the crust and let the cheese melt a little and you are ready to dig in!

I personally LOVE this recipe because it does freeze well and make life a lot simpler especially when you are not in the mood or lazy or whatever.... once frozen, its life is extended to 1-2 months...you can actually keep it up to 5 month maximum in a freezer but you may loose its flavor over that time so the best time to consume is within the 1st and 2nd month.

For this recipe you need a good baking potatoes. I'd say Russets or Idaho are good. I'm using Russets and you can buy them at Cold Storage in a pack for RM10 (9.90). Its a good deal considering that Russets, if you were to buy them individually by grams, they are quite expensive.

What you need:

about 5 med to large sized potatoes skinned, boiled and drained. - set a side.

25o g minced meat
1tsp ground black pepper

salt to taste

a pinch of sugar
1 tsp of Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 large onions sliced thinly.
1tsp balsamic vinegar
1 chopped carrots

1tsp soy sauce *optional

1 tsp paprika

1 can of mushroom
a pinch of dried thyme

1 bay leaf

1 knob of butte

1 tbsp olive oil

shredded cheddar and mozzarella cheese.
1 tub of yogurt (small tub)
salt to taste

1 1/2 tbsp Parmesan cheese

3tbsp flour

1 knob of butter

1 1/3c of water (plus minus)

1- heat a know of butter then add in sliced onions. Caramelized the onion. then add in the balsamic vinegar. cook through for a few minutes. then set a side. this will give the sauce a nice flavor of onion sweetness. Set a side.

2- season the minced meat with a bit of salt and paprika and olive oil. Mix well. then with some left over butter from cooking the onion cook the minced meat. once the meat is cooked add in the caramelized onions, mushrooms and carrots. Cook for another 10 minutes or so in a med to low heat. then remove from heat.

3- in a sauce pan. brown flour until it is brown in a med to low heat.. hehehe~ then add in another knob of butter and make a rue. Then add in water and slowly mix it until it is no longer lumpy.

4- then add in the meat mixture. cook through. if the gravy/sauce is thick then add in another 1/4 cup keep adding water until all ingredients are all cooked.

5- season the mixture with black pepper, salt, Worcestershire, soy sauce, sugar, thyme and bay leaf. The gravy should be some what loose and not to thick. a consistency of a loose custard? here's the reason why. because you want to freeze them, if the gravy is too thick, when you bake them the filling inside will be somewhat dry so its a good idea to make sure the filling's gravy is in the right consistency.

For the potatoes:
nice and smooth mash

1- mash the boiled potatoes. with a stand mixer with a whisk paddle. - to do this make sure that the potatoes are boiled thoroughly i.e soft or you'll spoil your whisk paddle.

2- then add in the yogurt, Parmesan cheese and salt. whisk until all incorporated.

I lined my cups with left over lasagna sheets uncooked. for some extra bites.
Pipe away!

1 - prepare a foil cups. add in the meat feelings them pipe out the mashed potatoes on top of the fillings making sure that its all covered. then sprinkle the cheese.

2- freeze the pies then individually pack them. I sealed them with aluminum foil first them pack them in a clear plastic and sealed them.

Its important to freeze the pies first or you'll ruin the swirl piped mashed potatoes with cheese on top.

1. add in some leftover lasagna sheets, it'll make the pie more filling and kids will love it too.
2. if adding lasagna sheets make sure that the gravy is loose.
3. Make sure that you use CLEAN utensil to avoid contamination.

Semolina Honey Almond Pudding

Monday, July 4, 2011

I have a kilo of semolina that i 've only used about 100g + for a failed cake recipe and a traditional kuih talam ( i got the kuih right but the portion of it is big for my small family size. i had to 'donate' it out for the thankful neighbors). So what else is semolina flour is good for? other than cake, & traditional kuih, apparently its pudding. But obviously the recipe DID NOT call for a 900g worth of semolina flour. Again we are only using it for about another 100g, it seem like its gonna take forever to use up all the semolina flour, right? I keep my semolina left over flour in the fridge so that i can hold on to its 'freshness' longer or at least until figure out what to do with them.

I came up with this recipe inspired by the middle east dessert of rice pudding, the texture and taste i basically based on the 'cake' and 'kuih' i supposed and that is why i have the idea of the honey and almond in the mix. its good combo i must say and i must add that its a VERY comforting food (*whispering* and filling too) well at least to me it is.

if you ask me about its origin, i'm not sure but i think its probably be Greek? coz if i am not mistaken, the word semolina derived from a Greek word 'semidalis' weird huh? well more directly it was from Italian word 'semola' that was borrowed from a latin word 'simila' which means flour that borrow from the Greek word....heh am i making any sense? well if you don't just google semolina origin i'm sure you'll get the appropriate info about this.

anyways...my dessert is inspired by the middle east rice pudding. I suck at making rice pudding and hate tasting it coz its just weird having rice as dessert. I am pretty sure that Malaysian palate is not accustom to sweetened rice *blurgh* but then again maybe its just me.

Ok Ok moving on...here is the recipe:

500ml milk (this is a plus minus please add more if the mixture is too thick)
knob of butter ( i actually put in about a table spoon of quality butter it really makes the difference)
60g semolina
1c water
5tbsp honey
11/2tbsp ground almond
a tiny pinch of salt

- soak semolina in 1 cup of water. until it swollen and less watery. this should take about 10-15minutes. but if your mixture is thick after few minutes of mixing, add in a couple table spoon of water.( the idea is to swollen the grain,this step will make the cooking time a lot faster)

- heat milk & butter until it gently simmering. then add in the 'swollen' semolina mixture.

- cook it until it have that ALMOST 'custardy' texture then add in the ground almond, honey, salt. Stir and mixing it thoroughly under a med-low fire.

- the mixture texture should be thick but slightly runny. the pudding will set further after chill time. So your mixture should not be too tight and thick. you get what i mean? if you don't just ask, i'll be happy to help. ;)

- place your mixture in a ramekins of your choice and let it chill! well i personally like it when its still warm ^_^

I'm not an expert of everything...

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Salam & Hi to all...

This entry is more like a rambling entry...i hope you don't mind. no recipes here just ramblings but not just any random ramblings (that i some how always to ramble away) but this time i thought of writing *ehem..ramble* about stuff that revolves around kitchen/cooking of baking....because like i say i'm no expert...

and again, like the title i'm not an expert of everything but i make my business (most of the time) to know or try to know about cooking and baking. The knowledge i have about baking and cooking are mostly from friends & families and also from some cooking & baking gurus - this include Anna Olson and her husband Mike Olson....seriously i literally 'stalk' them =p well i believe that asking and learning informally like that is the best way to acquire some of the BEST cooking and baking tips and stuff...right?

ok anyway i'm no expert (how many time have i been repeating this?) so there are some stuff that i manage to screw up baking.....believe me or not thats the truth... i think i have few on top of my head right now...its probably a list *lol* but it really KILLS me from the inside that i can't seem to do it RIGHT. do you know what i mean? its frustrating REALLY frustrating...

so here i'd like to reveal some of the stuff that i somehow effortlessly screw up the recipe/baking
Here goes...
10 - Semolina Cake
I know i know laugh if you will but for some reason i often fail to bake this wonderful cake....it always comes out dense and somehow 'uncook' God knows why...maybe its the recipe?

9 - dim sum dumplings
the dumpling that i meant is not those made with wonton skin but ones with wheat starch etc...yeah from scratch kind and make all the cool shape. made these several time but the skin ended up very hard to handle...well at most times sticky so i'd usually gave up half way.

8- decorative layer jelly
this one does gets on my nerve. the recipe is all good (it taste wonderful) but the layers it didn't stick together, it always separates and its annoying.

7 - layered cake
this is another type of cake that i can't seem to get it right....was it the recipe or just me? i don't know

6- Angel Cake
hahahahaah this one....its a love and hate relationship. there are times that i can get it right but
there are also times that it deflate on me after baking

5- scone
yeah yeah ....it didn't fluff or puff after baking either that or it simply turn out hard VERY hard.

4- pita bread
this is also one of those love hate relationship thingie hmm....it never pocketed

3- puff pastry
have you ever try making this from scratch? its not that easy but it is simple (steps) am i making any sense? we're better off using store bought pastry

2- apam mekar
heheeheh this one i failed making it because the cake didn't blossom (tak mekar langsung) maybe its the heat....i didn't get the temperature right yeah maybe....

1 - macaroons

this is my no 1 on the list i've tried so many time but failed every time! tried every recipe on the net but it never grow its feet....then i gave up making it.....because it cost me a whole lotta egg whites!

there you go my top 10 fail list *lol* i'm not perfect but working on it. but if any of you know any tips or recipe that can help me out with my list above please please do comment. i appreciate it very much.