Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Trio Colour Chiffon Cake

Here's wishing you & family a Blessed and Happy New Year ^-^!


When my girl requested a cake for night watch and new year countdown in Church, I immediately thought of a funfetti cake. But I'm inspired by Susanne and Phay Shing from Loving Creations For You on those lovely colourful rainbow chiffon cakes. As I don't have the full range of rainbow food colouring to use, baked a trio colour chiffon instead.



Recipe mostly adapted from : Loving Creations For You
Below my slightly modified version as I've used the same numbers of egg yolks and egg whites.

Trio Colour Chiffon Cake
Ingredients (17 cm chiffon tin):
5 egg yolks
33g caster sugar
65g vegetable/corn oil
68 ml boiled water
100g cake flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
Food colouring (a drop of pink, apple green and yellow)

5 egg whites
60g caster sugar
1/4 tsp cream of tartar

1. Preheat oven to 160°C. Prepare a tray of water at the bottom of the oven (I used the lowest rack to bake the cake).
2. Beat egg yolks with sugar with whisk till pale yellow before stirring in oil, water and vanilla extract.
3. Next add in sieved flour and whisk till no trace of flour found.
4. Divide the batter into 3 large bowls. Mix in respective colours (pink, apple green and yellow egg colours).
5. Meringue: Beat the egg whites with ¼ tsp cream of tartar till stiff peak, mixing in caster sugar in 2 additions.
6. Divide the meringue into 3. Gently but quickly fold in the meringue into the 3 colours batter. You need to work very fast for the meringue not to deflate.
7. Scoop the pink batter into the chiffon tin, followed by green and yellow.
8. Bake the chiffon cake for 15 min at 160°C and then 35 min at 140°C, or when skewer comes clean.
9. Invert the chiffon cake once removed from oven.



Note:
The eggs that I used is 60g each.
To decorate the cake: mixed 50g icing sugar with 1 tablespoon lemon juice.
Some colourful sugar sprinkles

May you have a great start of the new year !


Thursday, 25 December 2014

Cranberry Nut Bars

A mini tea time gathering with my sisters during Christmas. The usual catch up session in my house with some homemade snacks.  I baked this pretty easy Cranberry Nut Bars early this morning before we went off to attend the morning church service.



Recipe source : Ocean Spray
My slightly modified version below as I've reduced the amount of caster sugar and cranberries.

Cranberry Nut Bars
Ingredients
2 eggs
90g caster sugar
120g flour
70g unsalted butter, melted
80g fresh cranberries
50g chopped walnuts

Directions
1) Preheat oven to 170°C. Grease an 8-inch baking pan.

2) In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the eggs until thick.
(About 6 - 8 mins on medium-high speed)
Gradually add sugar, beating until thoroughly blended.

3) Use a spatula to fold in flour and melted butter; blend well. Add cranberries and walnuts, mixing gently just until combined. Spread evenly in pan.

4) Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. (I covered a piece of loose foil over the pan in the last 10 mins into baking to avoid cake top being burnt too much).
Cool and cut into bars.

Makes 16 servings.

Freshly baked ... fresh from the oven
Some of the yummy snacks ... my sister baked sweet fruity tarts & mini cheese tarts. Added to my cranberry nut bars, I made some easy finger food ... baked chicken wings, turkey ham & cheese wrap & pan-fried brussels with pine nuts.

We enjoyed our wonderful mini hi-tea gathering and have a wonderful and blessed Christmas! 




Wishing you & family 
Merry Christmas 
Happy New Year 2015 !

♡♡♡~~~♡♡~~~♡♡♡


I'm submitting this post to Cook and Celebrate (Christmas 2014), organized by Yen from Eat your heart out, Diana from Domestic Goddess Wannabe and Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids.




Sunday, 21 December 2014

Cranberry Roast Chicken and Pumpkin

Cranberry sauce or cranberry jelly is a sauce or relish made out of cranberries, commonly associated with Thanksgiving dinner and Christmas dinner.

I bought a can of Ocean Spray® Whole Berry Cranberry Sauce. Glad to find some online recipes by Ocean Spray ... tried out this easy cranberry roast chicken. I used pumpkin instead of sweet potatoes.


We liked the sweet tangy cranberry sauce with tender roasted chicken.


Recipe source : Oceanspray
Below my slightly modified version as I have replaced with pumpkins and halved the recipe.

Cranberry Roast Chicken and Pumpkin 
Makes 2 servings

Ingredients
200g pumpkin, thinly sliced
2 boneless chicken breast (cut fairly thick chunks and seasoned with 1/2 teaspoon of salt for about 15 minutes)
200g Ocean Spray® Whole Berry Cranberry Sauce
40ml olive or vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Directions
Preheat oven to 180°C.
Rinse pumpkin, peeled skin and pat dry.
Place sliced pumpkin evenly in Pyrex dish (or baking dish of your choice).
Place chicken on top. Whisk remaining ingredients together in a medium mixing bowl. Pour mixture evenly over chicken and pumpkin.

Bake uncovered for 50 minutes or until chicken is cooked throughout and pumpkin are tender.

I forgot to pat dry the chicken pieces,
resulting more water at the base.

The Dōngzhì Festival 冬至 or Winter Solstice Festival is one of the most important festivals celebrated by the Chinese and other East Asians during the Dongzhi solar term (winter solstice) on or around December 22 (according to East Asia time). This year, the festival falls on Monday, December 22 ... just a few days before Christmas.  Traditionally, I preferred homecooked dinner instead of dining out when we celebrate 冬至. And I like to have 'East meets West' kinda celebration ... Cranberry Roast Chicken and Pumpkin  + Dessert Tang Yuan 汤圆 !
For the tang yuan,  I just added a few drops of food colouring to the glutinous rice flour and had some fun in shaping them like flowers and gifts .... hee hee !



♡♡♡~~~♡♡~~~♡♡♡


I'm submitting this post to Cook and Celebrate (Christmas 2014), organized by Yen from Eat your heart out, Diana from Domestic Goddess Wannabe and Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids.



Friday, 19 December 2014

Chestnut Pudding with Agar Agar



While I was driving home the other day, "The Christmas Song" was played over the car radio ...

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire, 
Jack Frost nipping on your nose, 
Yuletide carols being sung by a choir, 
And folks dressed up like Eskimos.

Well, I like roasted chestnuts. I've heard this song many times too ... since in my younger days. But never have I got the urge to roast chestnuts.  I immediately made a turn to the nearby supermarket, hope to find some raw chestnut. But .. lol ... couldn't find any... instead I bought a few packets of these ready-to-eat roasted chestnuts home.


I remembered a pudding recipe uses chestnut.  I like to have some bits & crunchy taste of chestnut instead of paste, grind and added them into the dessert.

Chestnut Pudding with Agar Agar
Recipe source : Cookpad
Slight modifications made in blue
Ingredients:
150 grams Chestnut Paste (finely grind ready-to-eat chestnut)
400 ml Milk
50 grams Raw cane sugar (I reduced to 25g, used demerara sugar)
2 teaspoon Agar Agar powder
1 teaspoon Almond essence
1 splash Rum (omitted)
Maple syrup - to serve

Method:
1) Mix the sugar and agar agar powder together well and leave to one side. (Adjust the amount of sugar depending on the sweetness of the chestnut paste that you are using.)

2) Add the milk to a pan along with the mixture from Step 1, mix well and put on the heat. Be careful that the mixture doesn't boil over and stir on a low heat. Allow the mixture to boil a little.

3) Off the flame and mix in the chestnut paste thoroughly.

4) Add in the almond essence and rum.

5) Pour the mixture evenly into containers and once cooled, chill and set in the refrigerator.

Serve with maple syrup if you like. These chestnut puddings are easy to prepare. Wonderful to serve as after meal dessert ... during Christmas. Enjoy ^-^!

Add 1 teaspoon of maple syrup


~~~~♡♡~~~~

So I'm offering this simple phrase
To kids from one to ninety-two
Although it's been said many times, many ways
Merry Christmas to you !

♡♡♡~~~♡♡~~~♡♡♡


I'm submitting this post to Cook and Celebrate (Christmas 2014), organized by Yen from Eat your heart out, Diana from Domestic Goddess Wannabe and Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids.


Thursday, 18 December 2014

Coffee & Walnut Biscotti



Well, to all the coffee lovers ... it's time for some 'coffee dunking' again ^-^!

Love the deep brown colour of these Coffee & Walnut Biscotti as I've added instant coffee to it. The strong coffee fragrance dominated the kitchen when I opened the oven door to take the half-baked dough out. This is also my first biscotti bake that contains butter.

If I were to bake this same recipe again, think I'll probably reduce the milk to half (or perhaps omit it totally) as the dough was rather runny and difficult to handle. Got to add some more flour to it.


Here's sharing another Biscotti recipe adapted from the cookbook by Kevin Chai ... Coffee & Walnut Biscotti. 
With slight changes made in blue



Enjoying my coffee break  ... dunking the coffee fragrance crispy biscotti at my little cosy corner! 

♡♡♡~~~♡♡~~~♡♡♡


I'm submitting this post to Cook and Celebrate (Christmas 2014), organized by Yen from Eat your heart out, Diana from Domestic Goddess Wannabe and Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids.

~~☆☆♧ And ♧☆☆~~

☆♧☆  And  ☆♧☆
Bake-Along #72 : Christmas Theme - Biscotti

Linking this post to Bake-Along event organized by the hosts (JoyceLena & Zoe)


☆♢☆  Also  ☆♢☆

Cook-Your-Books

Friday, 12 December 2014

Apricot Orange and Pistachio Biscotti

In the mood of love ... with Biscotti again this Christmas season. Well, I have actually planned to bake a few different flavours of Biscotti ^-^

Here's sharing another flavour ... Apricot Orange & Pistachio Biscotti! Lovely, don't they? ... simply love the colours combination of orange, green and yellow ... so festive & Christmasy looking.  A small giveaway to a good friend of mine. Glad that she liked it ^-^!


A small jar for my friend .... a few slices for myself ^-^

Recipe adapted from : Taste.com
Apricot Orange and Pistachio Biscotti
 Ingredients
 1 egg
 50g caster sugar
 1/2 teaspoon finely grated orange rind
 130g plain flour
 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
 40g pistachio kernels
 6 dried apricots, finely chopped (I used 5  pieces)
 Icing sugar mixture, for dusting

Method
Step 1
Preheat oven to 180°C/160°C fan-forced. Line a large baking tray with baking paper.

Step 2
Using an electric mixer, beat egg, sugar and orange rind until thick and pale. Sift over flour and baking powder. Add pistachios and apricots. Stir to combine.

Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead lightly until smooth. Shape into a 20cm long log. Place on prepared tray. Flatten slightly.


Step 3
Bake for 30 minutes or until golden. Cool on tray for 15 minutes. Reduce oven to 140°C/120°C fan-forced. Using a serrated knife, slice log diagonally into 5mm-thick slices. Discard ends (actually you don't have to, just eat them ! ~○~)


Step 4
Place slices, in a single layer, on baking tray. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, turning halfway through cooking, or until dry and crisp. Stand on tray for 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.


Can be stored in an airtight container for a week.
Serve lightly dusted with icing sugar if you like.


The sweet aroma of apricot and tangy orange fragrance .... with nutty fruity flavour.  Enjoy the dunking again ... in a cup of cappuccino ♡!

Happy baking, happy dunking and have a great 'bisco-lious' weekend ^-^!

♡♡♡~~~♡♡~~~♡♡♡


I'm submitting this post to Cook and Celebrate (Christmas 2014), organized by Yen from Eat your heart out, Diana from Domestic Goddess Wannabe and Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids.

~~☆☆♧ And ♧☆☆~~

☆♧☆  Also  ☆♧☆


Bake-Along #72 : Christmas Theme - Biscotti

Linking this post to Bake-Along event organized by the hosts (JoyceLena & Zoe)







Thursday, 11 December 2014

Hazelnut Biscotti

There were some special sales at the book store few weeks ago. Since the store wasn't crowded with people, so I took my own sweet time glancing and looking through the wide range of cookbooks selling at discounted prices. Biscotti ! Ding! Ding! Well, that was the only cookbook solely on biscotti with 42 biscotti recipes. Ding!!! I've been intrigued by some very interesting recipes ... Garlic Biscotti, Spring Onion Biscotti, Rose Biscotti, Charcoal Biscotti, Seaweed Biscotti, Tuna Biscotti ... Wow ! Have you heard of these ?
I love biscotti and my first attempt here about 2 months ago. Of course I grabbed a copy and headed my way to the checkout counter.

Okay, I admit ... hee hee! ... I "chicken out" as I'm not that adventurous to bake any of those unique recipes as mentioned above yet  ... lol ~○~ Cannot imagine the taste of dunked garlic biscotti in coffee or wine ... ~*~

Anyway, on the safe side, baked these Hazelnut Biscotti for my colleagues to try.




Recipe adapted from the cookbook - Biscotti by Kevin Chai.
Below my slightly modified version with some detailed steps and notes in blue.

Hazelnut Biscotti
Ingredients:
180g plain flour
3g baking powder
70g caster sugar (I reduced slightly to 55g)
40g hazelnut spread (I used Nutella)
50g egg lightly beaten
1 teaspoon hazelnut essence
40ml fresh milk
80g hazelnuts (reduced to 60g)

Method:
Step 1
Preheat oven to 200°C (180°C for my oven)
Line a large baking tray with baking paper.

Step 2
Combine flour, baking powder and sugar in an electric mixer. Add in the rest of the ingredients, mix to form a soft dough over low speed. (I added in the hazelnuts last after added all the spread/ liquid ingredients)



Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead lightly until smooth. Shape into a 20cm long log. Place on prepared tray. Flatten slightly.

Step 3 
Bake for 20 minutes or until light golden brown.


Remove and leave to cool completely.
Using a serrated knife, slice log diagonally into thin slices.
(I realised it's difficult to slice it too thinly as some of the hazelnuts 'dislodged'.  I should have coarsely chopped the hazelnuts instead. Slice it about 1cm thickness seemed to work better.)

Step 4 
Place slices, in a single layer, on baking tray. Bake in oven at 140°C for 20 minutes, turning halfway through cooking, or until dry and crisp. Stand on tray for 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Store in airtight container.


Keeping some for my coffee breaks
To bring this jar of Hazelnut Biscotti
to office for my colleagues to try :D
Well ... needless to say ... I'm enjoying my dunking time ^-^!

Sharing this cookbook here with Cookbook Wednesday, here are some of the unique recipes if you're interested to give it a try. Happy baking !









Also submitting this post to the respective blog-hop events below.

♧☆☆☆☆☆☆♧


Bake-Along #72 : Christmas Theme - Biscotti

Linking this post to Bake-Along event organized by the hosts (JoyceLena or Zoe)



Cook-Your-Books



I'm submitting this post to Cook and Celebrate (Christmas 2014), organized by Yen from Eat your heart out, Diana from Domestic Goddess Wannabe and Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids.