Sunday 27 November 2016

Citrus Shortbread Cookies

I don't often bake shortbread. My first attempt on shortbread stamped cookies here.  In just a few more days, we will be preparing and celebrating the Christmas festive season in December.  My usual baking for some biscottis or cookies as giveaway for my family has already began.  One of the “must-use” dried fruits  … dried cranberries for most of the biscottis and cookies recipes.  Starting with this citrus tangy flavour shortbread cookies.... infused with citrus lemon zest and tangy dried cranberries. Instead of slicing the cookie dough, I made them into rounds.

Recipe source : Allrecipes
Below my slightly modified version as I've halved the recipe and reduced the quantity of sugar & cranberries.

Citrus Shortbread Cookies
126g all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of teaspoon salt
116g butter, softened
35g confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
60g dried cranberries, roughly chopped

1) Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl; set aside.

2) In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), cream the butter and confectioners' sugar until smooth. Scrape down the bowl occasionally. Stir in vanilla and lemon zest. Gradually add flour mixture and mix to combine. Take bowl off mixer, fold in the cranberries into the dough and mixing just enough to evenly combine.

3) Place dough on cling wrap. Adjust and roll the dough into log about 1.5 inches diameter, 7 inches long. Wrap the log in cling wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.

4) Preheat oven to 175°C and position the rack in center of oven. (*the oven temperature may vary, do adjust accordingly).  Line baking sheets with parchment paper. (do not need to grease)

5) Remove the cling wrap, and cut the cookie dough into 1/2-inch. Using your hand, make the dough into rounds. Place it on the prepared baking sheet and gently press to flatten top. Space the dough well apart about 1 &1/2 inches between each cookie.

6) Bake in the preheated oven until firm about 12 - 14 minutes. Cool slightly on the baking sheet (about 3-5 minutes) before transferring them onto a wire rack to cool completely. Store them in airtight container.

An easy to attempt recipe. Ta da ! Packed them up in nice container as giveaway to share these delighted yummy treats with family :)

**** Launching of "Bake and Celebrate : Cookies & Treats" Cookbook ****
Thanks to Marshall Cavendish International (Asia) Ltd for this opportunity.  I am excited to be part of this collaboration project  .…  One of my cookie recipes will be featured in this "Bake and Celebrate : Cookies & Treats" Cookbook. The books will be out in stores in December and in time for festive seasons like Christmas & Lunar New Year, so it will make for a wonderful gift for family and friends!

A special pre-order price of $11.95 per copy from now till 9 December 2016. You may place your order and direct any enquiries to Please refer to the poster for more information.

Sunday 20 November 2016

Butter Cake (Mrs Ng SK)

Butter cakes are usually very dense and rich with buttery fragrant. That's why I'm always hesitant to bake a very rich butter cake with a block of 230g - 250g of butter. Marble Cake which I've baked a few times uses less than 100g of butter, yields buttery moist with tender crumbs texture that my big kids love.

The famous Mrs SK Ng's butter cake has been raving very fantastic good review by many food/recipe bloggers for past few years. The texture of the cake :  "moist tender cottony soft with strong buttery fragrant".  Since my big kids could afford such cake in high calories .. I would just love to pamper them with this famous butter cake ... hee ... hee ... But it turned out that I ate 4 big slices at one go ! Needless to say this awesome butter cake is so so so addictive ! Yeah tender crumbs, cottony soft with nice buttery fragrant !

Recipe source and adapted from :
table for 2 or more
the domestic goddess wannabe

Below my slightly modified version :-
Butter Cake (Mrs Ng SK)
250g salted butter, softened at room temperature
120g caster sugar
4 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
200g self raising flour, sifted
60ml milk

4 egg whites
50g caster sugar

1) Preheat the oven to 170°C. Position the rack in the center of oven.
*Note : The temperature of the oven may vary, do adjust accordingly.

2) Lined and lightly grease a 8″ × 8" square baking pan with some butter.

3) Separate the eggs into yolks and whites. (the size of my egg is 60g each with shell)

4) In a clean mixing bowl, whisk the cold egg whites till foamy using the electric mixer and gradually add in caster sugar in 3 separate additions and beat till stiff peak, formed into a firm meringue. Transfer to a big bowl and chill in the fridge.

5) With the electric mixer in medium speed, cream the butter. Gradually add the caster sugar and continue to cream until the mixture is light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

6) Put in half the flour and mix on low speed until incorporated. Add milk in 2 additions and mix until well incorporated. And the rest of the flour. Mix just until all the flour has been incorporated into the batter.

7) Put about 1/3 the meringue in batter and mix on low speed. Gently fold the remaining meringue in 2 batches to the batter with a spatula.

8) Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake at 170°C for 45 minutes.
* I turned down the oven temperature to 150°C in the last 15 minutes of baking. So glad it has no crack .... must keep an eye on the cake and adjust the oven temperature if need be, especially in the last 15 - 20 minutes of baking.

Check for doneness, insert a toothpick in the center if it comes out clean. Let the cake rest for 5 minutes in the pan before carefully transferring onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Enjoy !

Baked again :
My girl has a gathering and requested to bake "that very nice butter cake" to bring for the event. Baked with chocolate duo flavor for her.  When she returned home, she feedback that the cake was very well received.  Oh ! But I secretly kept 3 slices for my coffee break :)

Enjoy & Happy Baking !

Tuesday 8 November 2016

Pandan chiffon cake (without coconut milk)

With some leftover homemade pandan extract, baked a pandan chiffon cake without coconut milk (didn't keep any stock in my pantry).  Tried to make a few slits for the cake to see if it rise evenly. Mixed feeling ... somehow, I preferred no crack or slits  for the top.

Glad that I could use my hand to unmould the cake from pan (with more confidence now).  Hee ... hee... but lack of patience and resulted deep uneven patches. Haiz !

Recipe source:Cookpad
Below my slightly modified version.
17cm chiffon pan
For egg yolk batter :
4 egg yolks
20 grams caster sugar
30 grams canola oil
45 grams fresh milk
75 grams cake flour, sifted
1.5 teaspoon homemade concentrated pandan extract

For meringue :
4 egg whites
50 grams caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

1) Separate the eggs into yolks and whites. (the size of my egg is 65g each with shell)

2) Position the rack in the lowest level and preheat oven to 170°C. (Note: The temperature of the oven may vary, do adjust accordingly and observe especially in the last 10 - 15 minutes of baking.)

3) In a clean mixing bowl, whisk the cold egg whites and lemon juice till foamy using the electric stand mixer. Gradually add in caster sugar in 3 separate additions and beat till stiff peak, formed into a firm meringue. Transfer to a big bowl and chill in the fridge.

4) In the same mixing bowl, cream together egg yolks and caster sugar until pale and thickened using the electric mixer (about 3 - 4 minutes). Add canola oil, fresh milk and pandan extract and whisk until the mixture is combined.

5) Sift in cake flour and whisk again until mixture is well combined.

6) Gently but quickly fold 1/3 of the meringue into the yolk mixture with a spatula. Fold the remaining meringue in 2 batches into the mixture until it looks evenly mixed (no streaks of meringue).

7) Pour the batter into the un-greased chiffon pan.
Smooth the top evenly with spatula. Lightly tap the pan  2 - 3 times on a table top to get rid of any trapped air bubbles in the batter.

8) Bake in a preheated 170ºC for about 35 - 40 minutes.  **About 8 minutes into the baking time, take the cake out and make four evenly 1cm deep cuts over the surface of the cake. You need to be fast. This is to ensure that the cake will rise nice and evenly.

Cover with a piece of loose foil over the pan if top of the cake is browning too quickly.  Bake until the cake surface turns golden brown, and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

9) When the pan was removed from the oven, I used the suggested technique to drop the pan at a height of 20~30cm onto a table top. This action helps to keep the springy texture of the cake when it is left to cool.

10) Immediately invert the pan to cool before unmoulding the cake from pan. To unmould cake by hand, gently pull cake from the sides of the tube pan. Turn the cake pan over and press down on the bottom firmly to dislodge. Gently pull the cake from the base around the edge and around the whole cake. Continue to lift up the cake and moving inwards until you reach the tube.

Enjoy this fluffy soft sweet pandan fragrance chiffon cake ^-^