White chocolate blondiesPosted on May 9th, 2013 @ 8:01 pm
Every year, Parent Teacher Organisation (PTO) organised a staff appreciation lunch to reward teachers and school staffs. Parents were asked to provide food. Last year I baked some homemade cookies, because it was the easiest thing to do, easier for Malaika to bring to school than a cake. There was no need for me to go to the school. This year, I volunteered to bake cookies, but the spot was taken, so I offered to bake some brownies. I could cut in it into pieces so that Malaika could easily bring it to school. Then I decided to bake something else – white chocolate blondies after seeing a big block of white chocolate in my pantry.
So I googled and decided on a BBC food recipe. It was a pretty easy recipe and yet yummy tasting. I didn’t make the frosting because I think the blondies itself should be very sweet.
225g caster sugar (reduced to 160g)
4 free-range eggs
225g butter, melted, plus extra for greasing
150g plain flour, sifted
225g white chocolate, chopped
100g macadamia nuts, chopped (used walnuts)
1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease a 20cm/8in square cake tin with butter.
2. In a mixing bowl, beat together the sugar and eggs until pale and fluffy. Beat in the melted butter a little at a time, making sure each addition of butter is fully incorporated before adding the next.
3. Add the flour and carefully fold it into the mixture using a metal spoon.
4. Add the chopped white chocolate and macadamia nuts and carefully fold them into the mixture.
5. Spoon the brownie batter into the prepared cake tin and shake gently until level. Transfer the tin to the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the brownies comes out clean. Set aside to cool.
best chocolate cupcakes?Posted on May 5th, 2013 @ 8:47 pm
I was looking for a chocolate tart recipe and stumbled across this chocolate cake recipe. I glanced through the ingredients and had all in my pantry. So I started baking straight away. I wanted to use the chocolate frosting as per the original recipe, and I ran out of butter. My driver didn’t want to drive me out to buy butter. So I looked in the fridge and found a pack of cream cheese. We all know that almost all kids like chocolate, so I melted a block of of chocolate to be mix into the frosting.
The result – Papa ate 2-3 cupcakes. He commented that it was like the devil cake. He likes it. Normally I don’t like this type of chocolates because I could taste soda in my mouth which I don’t like it. But this time, I like the whole cupcake.
Ingredients: (to make up to 24 cupcakes or 2 8″ cakes)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup cocoa
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp espresso powder
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water
1. Preheat oven to 170C. Prepare two 9-inch cake pans or muffins tray.
2. Add flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt and espresso powder to a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Whisk through to combine or, using your paddle attachment, stir through flour mixture until combined well.
3. Add milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla to flour mixture and mix together on medium speed until well combined. Reduce speed and carefully add boiling water to the cake batter. Beat on high speed for about 1 minute to add air to the batter. Cake batter is pretty runny.
4. Distribute cake batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans or muffin tray. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
6. Frost cake with cream cheese chocolate frosting.
Cream cheese chocolate frosting
175g cream cheese
30g butter, soft
100g 55% bittersweet chocolate, melted
100g powder sugar
Using a hand held mixer, mix all the ingredients together. Pipe on cooled cupcakes.
Cake popPosted on May 3rd, 2013 @ 10:17 pm
I attempted making cake pop on the last Halloween party. Thinking that it was easy, again, I underestimated the time I needed to do other chores, I ended up didn’t really have the time to serve the cake pop. I was getting pretty adventure, making strawberry cake and mould it into cake pop using cream cheese. I used too much cream cheese and the cake pop was pretty soggy. Also not many people like strawberry flavour. It was a failure.
Armed with this limited experience, I tried to make the cake pop again. This time as a snack to go in Malaika’s party pack. I decided to use my brownies recipe. Instead of using cream cheese, I just put some softened butter to mould the cake pop. I also bought some Wilton’s candy melts. This time round, I considered it was a success. I tasted it and liked it very much.
First, I baked a tray of brownies, which I weighted it when it was all cool – 750g. Then, I used my hands to crumble the brownies into pieces and use just 30g of butter to mix it. I shaped the cake pop into 25g ball. If the ball keeps on falling, take some butter and try to roll it into ball again. And it should work. I got 31 balls all together. Then, I put them all in the freezer.
1-2 days before the feast, I took out the balls and defrost them in the fridge. Then, melt the candy melts. Add a little shortening to get a more liquid smoother melts. Do not add butter. I tried it and the melts became like a lump. Decorate the cake pops with sprinkles.
· cake pops
Kids can bake: Chocolate banana cupcakesPosted on April 15th, 2013 @ 8:35 pm
On a lazy Sunday, I saw some overripe bananas on the kitchen counter top, so I summoned the kids to bake chocolate banana cupcakes. They were of course thrilled. They always eager to ‘help’ me in the kitchen. I have baked these cupcakes a couple of weeks ago, so I know the cupcakes tasted great. I divided the tasks – Kelsey handled the wet ingredients and Malaika handled the dry ingredients. Malaika mixed and divided the batter too. They were happy to get their hands dirty, as always. Original recipe from here.
175g granulated white sugar
130g all-purpose flour (sifted)
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (sifted)
3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 large egg
1/2 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 1 medium sized banana)
1/2 cup (120 ml) warm water
1/4 cup (60 ml) milk
1/4 cup (60 ml) canola, corn, or vegetable oil
3/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
Chocolate Fudge Frosting:
100g unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
113g unsalted butter, room temperature
100g icing sugar, sifted
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 180C . Combine flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and whisk them together.
mashing the banana
2. In another large bowl, whisk together the egg, mashed banana, water, milk, oil, and vanilla extract until well combined.
3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir, or whisk, until combined. (The batter is quite thin.)
4. Scoop the batter into the cupcakes liner to 3/4 full, and bake for about 20 mins.
5. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack before piping chocolate frosting.
Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
In an electric mixer bowl, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy for about 1 minute. Add the icing sugar and beat until it is light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Add vanilla extract and mix well. Add the melted chocolate and beat on low speed until incorporated. Beat for another 2 to 3 minutes on medium-high speed until frosting is smooth and glossy.
· 6 years
· Junior chef Kelsey
· Junior chef Malaika
Doggie coco crunch cookiesPosted on April 13th, 2013 @ 10:53 pm
This doggies cookies has been around for a long time. I bookmarked it and of course totally forgot all about it, until I bloghopped to Merryn’s craft site to find crafting idea for the kids.
This time, I actually let the kids did all the work – from measuring to forming the dough to forming cute doggies faces. Kelsey didn’t want to make dog faces, he only wanted to do aliens face by sticking as many chocolate chips a possible. Malaika was more creative and imaginative by creating crying face, girl with long hair, boy wearing a cap and etc.
After that, they ate their fruit of labour. Extra yummy!!
200g plain flour
45g icing sugar
125g butter (cubed)
1 tsp vanilla
Chocolate chips, chocolate rice, coco crunch
1/2 tbsp ice water or more to create a workable dough
1. Sift flour and sugar. Add butter.
2. Rub in with fingers.
let them feel the butter rubbing against the flour
3. Once the dough turns into ‘breadcrumbs’ add 1/2 tablespoon very cold water and vanilla essence and knead lightly.
4. Chill the dough for 1 hr or more.
5. Put 2-3 chocolate chips into each piece of dough. Roll into balls.
6. Decorate the dog using chocolate chip as the nose, chocolate rice as the eyes and coco crunch as the ears or use your imagination.
7. Preheat oven to 180C. Make a tray full of little doggies or other animals and bake for 20 minutes or until slightly brownish.
8. Let the cookies cool off before consuming.
· 6 years
· Junior chef Kelsey
· Junior chef Malaika
Chocolate madeleinesPosted on April 5th, 2013 @ 9:42 pm
I bought two madeleines moulds years ago because I wanted to make madeleines. But then, I kept it in the pantry drawers for so long until I forgot all about them. Last weekend, I had 2 egg whites in the fridge. Rather than trying my luck again at macarons, I decided to try my luck at madeleines. Then, I found out that baking madeleines required 2 whole eggs rather than egg whites. Since I had already done all the pre works for madeleines, I might as well go ahead with baking madeleines. And at the same time, I tried my luck on macarons again. This shall be in another post.
This little plump fat tea cakes were packed with chocolate flavour. I was surprised with the taste. Well, since I never tasted any madeleines before, I didn’t know what texture should be expected. Anyway, it was moist and very easy to eat too. My family loves it. The only downside of this little plump cake, the batter is needed to be chilled in the fridge for overnight, for a better result. Some recipes do called for chilling for a min an hour. Original recipe is from here.
Ingredients make about 12-14 madeleines
70g all-purpose flour
3 1/2 tbsp Dutch-processed cocoa powder
1/2 tsp double-acting baking powder
Pinch of salt
Grated zest of ¼ lemon (optional)
2 large eggs, room temperature
100g unsalted butter, room temperature
1. Sift together the flour, cocoa and baking powder and set aside. If using the lemon zest, combine the sugar, salt and lemon zest in another bowl and rub the ingredients together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist, grainy and aromatic.
2. Using a whisk, beat the eggs with the lemon-sugar mixture until blended. Squish the butter through your fingers and add to the bowl. You will be left with little clumps of butter in the mixture–this is okay. Beat in the butter with the whisk until it is evenly distributed. Whisk in the sifted flour mixture just until the flour is incorporated and mixture is smooth. Press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the batter and chill overnight. If you can’t wait overnight, chill the batter for at least an hour before baking.
3. When you are ready to bake the cookies, preheat your oven to 220C. Butter a 12-mold madeleine pan then dust it with flour (even if you are using a nonstick pan) and tap out the excess.
4. Divide the batter evenly among the madeleine molds–you don’t have to worry about spreading the batter on the molds, the heat will do that for you. Place the pan in the oven and use a wooden spoon to keep the oven door slightly ajar. Immediately turn down the oven temperature to 170C and bake the cookies for 13 – 15 minutes, or until the cookies are domed and spring back when pressed lightly. Unmold the cookies and transfer them to a rack to cool to room temperature.
Brownies, encorePosted on January 19th, 2013 @ 10:28 pm
The picture above doesn’t justify how good these brownies taste. They tasted amazing. I have been using another brownie recipe for year. And throughout these few years, I did try a few recipes, hoping to find a better recipe. This is it. The freshly baked brownies tasted a bit foamy and soft, perhaps due to the air while whipping the eggs. It tasted better the next day, I find. Original recipe from here.
185g unsalted butter
185g dark chocolate (55% cocoa)
85g plain flour
40g cocoa powder
50g white chocolate
50g milk chocolate
3 large eggs
275g golden caster sugar (further reduced to 150g)
handful of nuts (optional)
1. Melt butter and chocolate in a water bath. Put over a low heat until the butter and chocolate have melted, stirring occasionally to mix them. Leave the melted mixture to cool to room temperature.
2. Preheat the oven to 180C. Using a shallow 20cm square tin, cut out a square of non-stick baking parchment to line the base. Now tip 85g plain flour and 40g cocoa powder into a sieve held over a medium bowl, and tap and shake the sieve so they run through together and you get rid of any lumps.
3. With a large sharp knife, chop 50g white chocolate and 50g milk chocolate into chunks on a board. The slabs of chocolate will be quite hard, so the safest way to do this is to hold the knife over the chocolate and press the tip down on the board, then bring the rest of the blade down across the chocolate. Keep on doing this, moving the knife across the chocolate to chop it into pieces, then turn the board round 90 degrees and again work across the chocolate so you end up with rough squares.
4. With an electric mixer on maximum speed, whisk the eggs and sugar until they look thick and creamy, like a milk shake. This can take 3-8 minutes, depending on how powerful your mixer is. You’ll know it’s ready when the mixture becomes really pale and about double its original volume. Another check is to turn off the mixer, lift out the beaters and wiggle them from side to side. If the mixture that runs off the beaters leaves a trail on the surface of the mixture in the bowl for a second or two, you’re there.
5. Pour the cooled chocolate mixture over the eggy mousse, then gently fold together with a rubber spatula. Plunge the spatula in at one side, take it underneath and bring it up the opposite side and in again at the middle. Continue going under and over in a figure of eight, moving the bowl round after each folding so you can get at it from all sides, until the two mixtures are one and the colour is a mottled dark brown. The idea is to marry them without knocking out the air, so be as gentle and slow as you like – you don’t want to undo all the work you did in step 4.
6. Hold the sieve over the bowl of eggy chocolate mixture and resift the cocoa and flour mixture, shaking the sieve from side to side, to cover the top evenly. Gently fold in this powder using the same figure of eight action as before. The mixture will look dry and dusty at first, and a bit unpromising, but if you keep going very gently and patiently, it will end up looking gungy and fudgy. Stop just before you feel you should, as you don’t want to overdo this mixing. Finally, stir in the white and milk chocolate chunks until they’re dotted throughout.
7. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, scraping every bit out of the bowl with the spatula. Gently ease the mixture into the corners of the tin and paddle the spatula from side to side across the top to level it. Put in the oven and set your timer for 25 minutes. When the buzzer goes, open the oven, pull the shelf out a bit and gently shake the tin. If the brownie wobbles in the middle, it’s not quite done, so slide it back in and bake for another 5 minutes until the top has a shiny, papery crust and the sides are just beginning to come away from the tin. Take out of the oven.
8. Cool the tin until completely cold. Cut into squares. It’s useful to know that they’ll keep in an airtight container for a good two weeks and in the freezer for up to a month.
Celebrating Christmas 2012Posted on December 27th, 2012 @ 5:14 am
Finally, the moment the kids had been waiting for was here … Christmas Eve when they could open their presents. I supposed most people will only exchange present on 25 Dec, but for us, not sure whether it is a German tradition or not, we exchange presents on 24 Dec after big turkey dinner.
roast turkey, garlic mashed potatoes, oven roasted potoatoes, salad, garlic bread, tomatoes soup, Chinese glutinous rice with bacon, maple syrup glazed carrot, bacon fried green bean
he saw that his name was on the big present
great 2nd hand deal – Schleich Knight Castle
Beanies Boo was high on the list ..
playing with kid torch light
chocolate pudding cake with vanilla ice cream and caramel almond
After dessert, MIL and her friend left and I got the kids to sleep. They slept with their Christmas pyjamas. Kelsey with Spongebob and Malaika with princess dress. After breakfast the next day, they started playing with their new toys. Malaika got Lego friend motor home and a small set of piano room.
fascinated by V tech Kiddy secret console where by the machine will be open upon recognising her voice
a complete set of Mr Men’s books
papa helped to construct the Hotwheel Carrera
· 6 years
· having fun
Salted caramel browniesPosted on December 19th, 2012 @ 9:06 pm
There was once we had caramel brownie as dessert after some fancy dinner at a hotel, and Terry said he liked the dessert. Well, he likes caramel and he likes brownie, so the combination of his 2 favourite dessert would make a super duper good dessert? Well, not in this case. I used too much caramel and the brownie became too rich and too caramel that he could not take it. On the other hand, I like this caramel brownies. Since it was sooo sweet and rich, I actually had this brownie with a cup of plain coffee for breakfast for almost a week. Well, I was trying to pace this super rich, sinful dessert. I would definitely make it again, with less caramel sauce.
Original recipe is from here.
For the Brownies:
142g bittersweet chocolate, chopped (55% Ritter sport)
57g unsweetened chocolate, chopped (70% Lindt)
113g unsalted butter, cut into quarters
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
280g castor sugar (reduced to 140g)
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp sea salt
110g all-purpose flour
For the Salted Caramel Sauce:
225g castor sugar (I used 180g)
85g unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tsp sea salt
2/3 cup heavy cream, at room temperature
I would make only half the above recipe next time.
Sea salt flakes for topping brownies.
1. Preheat the oven to 175°C.
2. In a 3-quart saucepan, heat the sugar over medium-high heat, whisking as the sugar begins to melt. Some of the sugar will harden into clumps, but that’s okay – it will melt eventually – just keep whisking. Continue to cook the sugar until it reaches a dark amber color. At that point, whisk in the salt, and then add the butter all at once and whisk until it is completely incorporated into the sugar. Remove the pan from the heat and pour in the heavy cream (it will foam up when first added). Continue to whisk until it forms a smooth sauce. Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes before using in the brownies. The leftover sauce can be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
3. In a medium heatproof bowl set over a pan of almost-simmering water, melt the chocolates and butter, stirring occasionally until smooth. Whisk in the cocoa until smooth. Set aside to cool.
4. Whisk together the eggs, sugar, vanilla, and salt in a medium bowl until combined, about 15 seconds. Whisk the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture; then stir in the flour until just combined. Pour about half of the brownie mixture into the prepared pan and spread into the corners.
5. Spoon a layer of Salted Caramel Sauce on top of the brownie batter. Top with the remaining brownie mixture, spread into the corners and level the surface with a spatula. Again, spoon 9 dollops of the Salted Caramel Sauce on top of the brownie batter (would skip layering the brownie for second round, way too rich and sweet). With a dull butter knife, gently run it through the batter to swirl the batter just a bit (don’t do it too much or it will all mix together). Sprinkle a bit of sea salt on top.
5. Bake until slightly puffed and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a small amount of sticky crumbs, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool on a wire rack to room temperature Cut into squares and give a generous sprinkle of sea salt flakes. Brownies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature.
巧克力相思蛋糕 (steam bake chocolate cake)Posted on November 30th, 2012 @ 8:02 pm
This cake has been on my bookmark list for quite some time. I finally had the time to make it. In essence, it is like a sponge cake. Very soft and light and melt in your mouth type of cake. I like it. Unfortunately, hubs didn’t like the texture. Just not his cup of tea.
Original recipe from here. A reproduction of the recipe is for my own record.
52g corn oil
50g milk & 20g dark chocolate (warm milk and add in dark choc, stir until choc is melted)
100g yolks (about 6 size M eggs)
45g HongKong Flour or low protein flour
10g cocoa powder
150g egg whites (about 6 size M eggs)
60g fine sugar
1. Mix corn oil and dark chocolate milk together.
2. Add in egg yolks and mix well.
3. Pour in sifted flour and cocoa powder, mix till one gets a smooth batter.
4. In a clean and dry bowl, beat egg whites until foamy. Add half the sugar. Continue beating. Add in remaining sugar and beat until egg whites are glossy with soft peak.
5. Gently fold in half of the egg whites mixture into the cocoa egg yolk mixture until well combined.
6. Steam bake in preheated oven at 160c for 50 minutes.
7. When cake is done, remove from oven and turn the pan over. Leave cake to cool in pan before remove the cake from cake pan.