31 August 2011

Oreo Chiffon Cake

I edited the post by deleting the name of the school. 

My son has been attending X school for a month. I accompanied him only for the first day. He goes to school daily, every morning he will ask me "where are we going?" I'll tell him, "You are going to school." Then he goes to school happily! This is a big change if compared to when he was at LV. He attended LV for nearly 3 months, at LV he was so attached to his form teacher and his own class room. I was worried and I think the decision to change him to X school is the right one! 

Every morning he will have a chance to play in the real playground, I say real because the playground is in the school garden, he sees grass and soil not the one with rubber floor mat! When come to mid day, he no need to sit in the toilet waiting half an hour for teachers to bath his classmates. At X school, the teacher will bathe two students at a time and the rest play or listen to stories tell by teacher assistant.

Everyday, he comes home with colour patches on his hands and shirt. I'm a strong believer of empower children to do their own things and not holding their hands to accomplish what we think they should accomplish. I don't want a beautiful result, children have their own thinking and I think a good education system should help to unleash their creativity. Is amazing and releasing for me to see my boy being categories by teachers as "active" and "vocal". .. Moreover, he no longer attached to a teacher, any teachers take over the class is fine for him!!       

Post-note (19/10/2011):
I withdrew my son from X school on 12/10/2011. His form teacher gone "missing" after a mere 3 weeks with him, the school asked an unqualify teacher assistant to take over the class (which I strongly disagreed and the director of the school think this is appropriate). Add on to that was one day my son came home with red swollen mark which he told me done by a teacher assistant, which the school defended and denied the case. I believe my son, the mark was on his shoulder for 3 days.

He merely with school for about 2 months and there was an earlier case of deep scratch mark which bleed (on left side of the neck to shoulder) who the school claimed was done by a student who merely 2+, the wound recovered but leaving a white mark on my son shoulder until the day I write this note, can you believe a child can create this kind of deep cut on his peer?  

Whoever read this, please judge for yourself before sending your child to this school.

So much about my son ^^ Let me present to you this interesting Oreo Chiffon Cake. You may hop over to Table for Two or More, Bakericious and Cherry Potato to see theirs beautiful Oreo Chiffon Cakes too!

Ingredients :

65gm oreo (half a regular tube), lightly pulverized together with cream

5 egg yolks
50gm sugar
60gm milk
60gm corn oil
100gm cake flour, sifted

5 egg whites
½ tsp cream of tartar or 1 tsp lemon/lime juice
60gm sugar

1. Preheat oven at 160/180C.
2. Mix yolks and sugar together. Then put in the oil. Alternate add in milk and sifted flour. Combine with a whisk until smooth. (Do not whisk or beat but just combine)
3. Beat egg whites until frothy, add lemon juice and beat until soft peaks. Put in sugar gradually and beat until stiff.
4. Fold ¼ of egg whites into (2) and then another ¼  egg whites.
5. Pour egg yolk batter into the remaining egg whites and fold (no need to be too thorough).
6. Put in pulverized oreos and fold until well combined.
7. Pour into a clean ungreased tube pan (22 or 25cm will be fine) and bake for 45 minutes.
8. Invert immediately upon removal from oven. Wait for it to cool down totally before removing cake from pan.

25 August 2011

Siew Bao 1 (Baked BBQ Pork Buns) 烧包

My father likes to eat pastries, this kind of 烧包 is his favourites. In my memory this pastry is associated with Seremban Siew Bao (芙蓉烧包)However, when we were young we didn't always get to eat this pastry, it came when there was special occasion or someone presented the pastry to my father as a gift. 

It has been sometimes since I last taste this Siew Bao. It is not my favourite food but it brings back lot of old memories. Whatever I baked or cooked, my parent are too far away to taste the food, but I know my father will check on the Internet, access my blog to see what is going on here. I'm still their daughter, the bumble-bee that like to talk no-stop when I was young. 
I saw Jane's Corner and 人生加油站 baked their lovely Siew Bao, my heart told me I should give myself a chance to try making one and I did, without regret.

Recipe adapted from Jane's Corner and 人生加油站 with changes to filling and pastry folding method.

Ingredients for filling:      
400g pork meat, sliced into small cubes
6 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tbsps sesame oil
a pinch of salt
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsps cornstarch
3 tbsps oyster sauce
2 tbsps dark soy sauce
3 tbsps cooking oil

1. Marinade all the ingredients (except garlic and cooking oil) for an hour.
2. Heat wok, add cooking oil. Stir-fry garlic for 2 mins, add the marinade meat. Stir-fry the meat until cook, or about 8 mins. Set aside to cool completely.

Ingredients for pastry:
water dough:
200g plain flour
50g oil (cooking or olive oil is fine)
1 tbsp sugar
90ml water

oil dough:
200g top flour
70g butter

1. In a bowl, mix ingredients for water dough (except oil), slowly add in water. Knead into a rough dough, add oil and knead to a smooth dough. Set aside for 30 mins.
2. Mix ingredients for oil dough. Use butter knife to cut the butter and use fingertips to lightly rub the butter with flour until mixture look like fine breadcrumbs. Lightly press together the oil dough.
3. Divide water and oil dough into 12 portions respectively.  
4. Flatten the water dough, wrap the oil dough in it. Flatten with rolling pin, roll up, flatten again, repeat for another 4 times (this will ensure you get a clear layering pastry).
5. Roll into small ball, set aside for 10 mins. 
6. Flatten the dough and stuff filling, egg wash and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
7. Bake at 210 C for 30 mins.

Love the golden brown which I get from this baking,
very satisfy with the result. 

Juicy meat filling with flaky pastry layering that taste crispy and full of flavour. 
This brings back my childhood memory.  

24 August 2011

Banana Cream Pie and Giveaway Winner

Congratulations to "neyeeloh"! You are the winner of my 5th blog anniversary giveaway, just send me your mailing address at my email and you should recieve the "Baking with tiny tots" book in a week time. Congratulations! Thanks so much to everyone who participated in the giveaway and hope you are having a wonderful week!

Banana Cream Pie, a wonderful dessert from Joy of Baking which I would like to share with you. Well, since this week I'm really busy (no domestic helper...sigh), I used the ready made pastry sheet, this really save me some times in preparing the yummy pie. Of course, I baked the crust a day before, during night time when Gabriel was asleep and assemble the banana cream pie the next day. However, if I'm going to bake this pie again, I'll definately make my own pastry crust!

I'm submitting this post to Aspiring Bakers#10 Easy As Pie (August 2011) hosted by Janine from Not the Kitchen Sink!

Recipe adapted from Joy Of Baking

Ingredients for pastry cream:
300ml milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
3 egg yolks
50g sugar (used 30g)
20g top flour
20g cornstarch
1 tbsp rum
3 bananas, sliced

Ingredients for whipped cream:
240ml heavy whipping cream (used 200ml light whipping cream to cut down the calories) 
20g icing sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla essence

1. Mix sugar and egg yolks in bowl. Whisk flour and cornstarch together, add to egg mixture, whisk until smooth. Set aside.
2. In a saucepan bring milk and vanilla to boiling. Remove and slowly add egg mixture. Whisking constantly to prevent curdling.
3. Pour egg mixture into a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat until boiling, whisking constantly until it turns thick, remove from heat, add rum and cover the surface with plastic wrap to prevent crust from forming. Cool to room temperature before using.
4. For whipped cream, place the mixing bowl 15 mins in the freezer before using. Beat whipping cream, icing sugar and vanilla until stiff peaks form.

1. Spread pastry cream on the crust, top with sliced bananas, spread the whipped cream over bananas. Dust with cocoa powder or chopped buttercrunch toffee. For my case, I decorate the pie with some more bananas and dark chocolate syrup!  

Heritage Food Trail: My version of Penang Hokkien Mee (福建面)

I always cook this Hokkien dish but seldom post it because of my laziness in getting the food nicely done up and not to keep big boy with rumbling tummy waiting. The Hokkien Mee paste I used for this dish was a homemade paste by my mum who learnt cooking from my late grandmother after she married my father. My mum made a bottle of the paste for me many months ago, I keep it in freezer. She told me the ingredients she used to make the paste but not the quantities of it as ... it depends on how much paste you want to make, was her answered to me. So, in the recipe for paste, I only can tell you the ingredients. 

Usually yellow noodles is used in Hokkien Mee, some may like to mix bee hoon (rice noodles/Rice vermicelli) with yellow noodles. I didn't like the yellow noodles, therefore, usually I used only bee hoon.

22 August 2011

Potato Egg Salad

Trying a few dishes on "Cooking with eggs" by Tang Phaik Cheng. This dish is for Gabriel, I modified a bit on the ingredients by adding more vegetables. Worried that Gabriel may not like the spicy taste, I omitted the seasoning and mustard too. 

18 August 2011

5th Blog Anniversary and Giveaway!

Chocolate S'mores Pie ready for oven

My blog is six five years old! (my husband called from overseas to inform me that I failed my math, so embarrass!)  I created the blog in May 2006, my first post was on 24 August 2006. It started as a personal journal then documentary of my son daily life, eventually it becomes what it is today. I've written 261 blog posts, most of my posts captures my daily life and emotion. I would like to thank those who left your lovely comments and providing links to my blog. Thank you for your support throughout these years, and also thank you for sending your warm regards and hugs during days when I especially need it.

Chocolate S'mores Pie from Dinner with Julie, is a yummy sinful treat. I baked this easy pie using ready made shortcrust pastry sheet to celebrate my blog 6th 5th birthday!

Recipe adapted from Dinner With Julie with changes to the crust.

Place a piece of pastry sheet into the baking pan, cut excessive. Blind bake in a 190C oven for 8 mins, or until golden brown around the edges of crust.

1 cup whipping cream
8 oz. good-quality bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 large egg
pinch salt
2-3 cups mini marshmallows

Preheat oven to 190C. Bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan, and put the chocolate in a bowl. Pour the cream over the chocolate and whisk until smooth. Whisk in the egg and salt. Pour into the crust.

Bake for 25 minutes, until filling is softly set but still trembles slightly in the middle when you gently shake it. Cool completely on a wire rack.

Pile the marshmallows on top of the cooled filling and preheat the oven. Bake the pie for a minute – it browns quickly, so check it after 30 seconds – until the marshmallows are golden brown (My marshmallows didn't brown) Cool for 10 minutes before slicing with a sharp knife dipped in hot water, then wiped dry (do this before you cut each slice).

I'm submitting this post to Aspiring Bakers#10 Easy As Pie (August 2011) hosted by Janine from Not the Kitchen Sink!


Oozing chocolate!!

I have a gift for you to show my appreciation. "Baking with Tiny Tots" is the book I intend to giveaway, why this book? Because this is the result behind all baking and cooking, we all want a healthier and better food for our children and family members. A family baking session is a lovely way to spend time together. Moreover, they are able to eat the results of their labour is invariably met with wonder and joy. Of course things may get a bit messy and the end product may not up to your expectation, but does this really matter? Is worth it to let the little one join us in the kitchen.

This book is divided into 5 sections, you may take a look on the contents page. If you would like to take a chance on wining the book, all you need to do is leave a comment at this post. You do not have to be a blogger to enter. Please leave a mail ID or a link so I can contact you should you win.

This giveaway is open to all readers till 24th August 2011 (10 am, Singapore time) I will randomly pick the lucky winner...old fashion way :)  Good Luck and have fun!

17 August 2011

Pink Guava Red Bean Snow Skin Mooncake (with pumpkin seeds)

This is my second attempt on snow skin mooncake. I managed to get a better and tasty skin texture. It tastes delicious by adding pink guava juice instead of the fruit fragrance to the mooncake skin. 

Ingredients for skin:
100g premix snow skin powder
40ml pink guava juice 
10g shortening
Ingredients for filling:
40g red bean paste
1 tsp pumpkin seeds

1. Mix the ingredients for filling and roll the dough into a ball set aside.
2. Place snow skin powder into a small bowl, gradually add the juice (no need to add all), knead into a rough dough and add shortening and knead into a smooth dough. Chill the dough for an hour.
3. Flatten the skin dough and wrap in filling, shape the dough into a ball. Cut away excessive skin dough.  Place in the mooncake mould, press and dislodge imprinted mooncake.

To make double tone colour on snow skin, click here.

Red bean paste mix with a teaspoon of pumpkin seeds.

15 August 2011

Easy: Dragon Fruit Chocolate Lotus Paste Snow Skin Mooncakes (with fruit fragance) 巧克力火龙果冰皮月饼

The Mooncake or Lantern Festival which is a traditional harvest festival that is celebrated annually by Chinese will take place sometime between 11 Sep- 10 Oct in Singapore.  I know this is still early to post anything related to Mid Autumn Festival, as the Chinese celebrate the Mid Autumn Festival on the 15th day of the eighth Chinese Lunar month, it should be on 3 Oct this year. But this year I want to try making my own snow skin mooncakes as WT and I are not big fan of the traditional mooncakes as the ingredients used are far too oily for us.

11 August 2011

Black Soybean & Multi Grains Bun (Gelatinized Dough Method)

I'm again without domestic helper, my days go back to a very busy schedule. Morning, I always rush with the time preparing Gabriel for school, sometimes I have to go without breakfast until 10 am. I try to drink the so call healthy cereal pre-mix pack just to fill my stomach in the rush hour, and I find I like the taste of black soybean cereal until I developed the idea to mix the cereal into my bread. Guess what, I'm glad that I give it a try, the taste of the bun is delicious. 

Last night, I rearranged my workplace. A corner of the living room is converted into Mama and Gabriel's office, however, the mind of Gabriel is still thinking of his Papa who are on overseas business trip, he asked me "where is Papa's office?", I told him "papa's office is in the tall building at town, papa doesn't need a office at home." I think, Gabriel is not satisfy with my answer. I'm happy with my new corner and I think it does reflect in my baking too :) I think Gabriel is going to like the bun if I serve the bun with mushroom soup for his dinner ^^ 

Recipe from Ah Tze's kitchen play
Ingredients for Gelatinized Dough:
200ml milk
50g bread flour

stir the milk and flour together and boil under medium heat. Once the liquid thicken, remove from heat. Set aside to cool. Keep into refrigerator for at least 12 hours.

Ingredients for bread:
270g bread flour
30g plain flour
9g instant yeast
1/2 tsp salt
50ml warm milk
1 egg
60g butter
60g black soybean & multi grains mixture

1. Add all (except the egg and butter, the liquid has to add in slowly) into a bowl until well blended. Add in egg and 100g of gelatinized dough, knead until well-blended. Add butter and knead to form elastic dough.
2. Let it proof for 40 mins., flatten the dough and divide it into required weight (for me into 12 portions), roll it round and let it rest for 10 mins.
3. Flatten the dough and roll the dough into oblong and round shape and let it proof for another 40 mins.
4. Slice the top of the bun, decorate with some butter and sprinkle with sugar, bake at 180 for 15 mins.

09 August 2011

Happy 46th Birthday Singapore!

In a blink of eyes, I have been living in Singapore for a good 13 years. Today is Singapore 46th Birthday, I would like to say thanks to this country for giving me what I have today. The equal opportunity which we get here is what I can't get from my own country. May this country always be a safe place for us to live, Happy Birthday Singapore!

The above is a hand held windmill flag brought back by Gabriel from school. His first National Day celebration with teachers and friends. 

08 August 2011

Again, Banana Cake

Friends visiting, again I baked this soft and spongy Banana Cake using Wen's Delight recipe. Like in my previous baked, it doesn't disappointed me. I reduced the oil used for this baked to make it more healthy for Gabriel to consume. This recipe is a sure keeper for me to try again and again :)

Recipe adpated from Wen's Delight, original from Richard Goh

5 Eggs (large size, 65-70g w/shell)
250g Sugar (used 180g)
350-400g Banana (Ripe & cut into small pcs)
300g Cake flour
1 tsp Baking powder
1/2 tsp Baking soda (omitted)
200g Sunflower oil (or any vegetable oil except olive oil)(used 150g)

1. Preheat oven at 160 degree C. (my oven 170C)
2. Grease & line a 2 x 8" round tin (or 1 x 10" square tin) base with baking paper.
3. Sift flour, baking powder & soda together. Sift twice & set aside.
4. Whisk eggs, sugar & sliced banana at max. speed till stiff/ribbon stage. (For Kenwood Chef - approx 10-13mins)
5. Fold in sifted flour & mix well. (Can use spatular or hand to mix)
6. Add in oil & mix well till batter is shiny & flowing.
7. Pour into baking tin & bake for 40 - 45mins.