Saturday, 30 November 2013

Gingerbread Man

Gingerbread Man, gingerbread trees and gingerbread house, oh it's Christmas and will you be making some too? 
This year my children will be making some as gifts to go with the presents. 
This makes it a little special for family & friends as its all made by them. 

I like this simple gingerbread recipe, as it doesn't use all the mixed spices like nutmeg, clove & cinnamon.  I'm not too keen on all the strong spices with shop bought gingerbread biscuits but this recipe simple & nice. And children are less likely to eat it if there's too much spices. 
But you can add a little of each if you prefer. 

This is a great way to get your children involved in baking. 
Baking biscuits makes less mess and they get excited eating their own made bakes. 

Friday, 29 November 2013

Hokkaido chiffon cupcakes with vanilla custard cream


I suppose I don't really need to introduce the Hokkaido chiffon cupcake.
It's like almost every baker new or experienced have attempted this already.

But what I like about this cupcake is that I can eat it almost immediately after baking.
To me, this is a baby version of the chiffon cake but in a cupcake case.
I've tried a few recipes and find that this one suits me more.
It's soft, fluffy & very delicious.

My family's top favourite cupcakes.


3 egg yolks
30g sugar
45g oil
65g plain flour
60ml milk
1/2. Tsp vanilla extract

3 egg whites
45g sugar
1/4. Tsp cream of tartar


Whisk egg yolks with sugar until pale & fluffy.
Add oil and whisk well.
Add in the milk and vanilla extract & whisk to combine.
Fold in the sifted flour gently.

In a seperate bowl, whisk egg whites until frothy then add the cream of tartar.
Whisk to soft peak and add sugar gradually til you reach stiff peak.

Fold in the meringue to the yolk batter, fold in carefully not to deflate the batter.
Spoon into paper cases and bake in a preheated oven at 160c for 25 mins.

Once baked take out the oven and cool on a cooling rack.

You can pipe in cream and decorate with fruits & dust with icing sugar.

I made vanilla custard cream by adding a pot of ready made custard to freshly whipped cream.

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Orange Chiffon cake

Oh my love for chiffon cakes, I've been making so many I've lost count. 
I still remember how my first failed miserably! 
I couldn't figure out what went wrong? It collapsed and the sponge was too heavy. 
 I blamed the recipe and moved on to another yet failing again! I've tried so many different recipes from the Internet to baking books not one gave me the perfect chiffon!  

I didn't want to give up so I started comparing different recipes on the internet. 
There were hundreds of variations and all the pictures looked so good with big fluffy cakes but none really gave me satisfiying results.
Fed up searching, I started to experiment with the last recipe which was quite close to a successful chiffon that I've baked.
I made 3 adjustments to it and I made my first "Perfect" chiffon cake! 

I'm sharing this recipe hoping you will never fail on a chiffon cake! 
But having said that, if you do fail it's not my recipe. 
It's probably your oven! 
I've given this recipe to a few friends and they all have different results! One from being under baked and the other over baked. I bake mines at 180c for an hour and it is perfect every time.

My recipe is for a large chiffon cake. I couldn't buy a smaller tube pan as they never have them in stock. So this is why I've created this recipe to fit into my huge 10 inch tube pan. 

So you'll need a 10 inch chiffon tube pan or you could split it into two smaller tube pans. 
But cooking time will be less. You need to work that out as I haven't baked anything smaller. 

This recipes is for an Orange chiffon cake, you can replace the orange juice with other liquids to make different flavours.

Quick Blueberry sauce

Simple Blueberry sauce

I had a handful of very ripe blueberries left over from baking and I simply made some blueberry sauce for my children's breakfast. 
They had it with their porridge & pancakes. 

If you want to make more just double up the recipe. 


100 g blueberries 
15g lemon juice 
1. Tbsp sugar
1. Tbsp of water
1/2. Tsp of corn starch

Simply heat up everything in a saucepan and simmer for few minutes until the blueberries are soft enough to mush up with your wooden spoon. 
Transfer into a clean bowl and cool to serve. 
Works a treat! 



You can use this for ice cream, waffles or rice pudding. 

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Just my Pink Pink cakes.

I didn't plan what I was going to make that day, in fact I bake cakes so I can decorate it. 
 I just let everyone else eat it. 

Can you resist? 

I find the classic strawberry gateau a bit plain, so I jazzed up the cream to make it pink.
Don't you think it looks pretty? 
Lots of roasted hazelnuts around the cake and fresh strawberries. 
I really enjoyed making these cakes. 

Adding a few drops of red food gel into freshly whipped cream gives this cake a pretty pink colour. 
Piped rosettes around the cake as the border and finished with mini marshmallows, ripe strawberries & drizzle with melted chocolate sauce.  

I decided to cut this cake into half so there's more sponge and less cream to eat. 

Chinese turnip cake 蘿蔔糕

My first post for Chinese food! Oh yes! 

 I thought I give baking a break & post this delicious recipe.

Chinese Turnip cake  蘿蔔糕 

I love ordering turnip cake when we go to have Dim Sum. I think it's everyone's all time favourite. 
We used to go to 'yum char' with my parents, brother & sisters every Sunday.

I've got a recipe from my cousin in Germany. 
She posted a picture of her home made Turnip cake on Facebook and I got to have it. 
She was trying to give me her recipe over Skype! The trouble was she didn't know how much seasoning she puts in. So she just told me a little salt, a little soya sauce, some pepper.
Just this conversation alone took 20 mins. But it was hilarious as she was in her kitchen showing me the equipments she used. 
As with typical Chinese cooks, they never  measure out their seasoning. 

Anyway, the first time I made it, it was too salty. I guess the flavours gets more intense after chilling  overnight.  So the second batch I reduced the seasoning and it turned out too bland. 
 My sister-in-law also advise me to add wheat starch to it to make it more cakey texture otherwise it would be too wet & soft. So I add wheat starch to it. 

 After my 3rd attempt, I got it right! Hooray! 

Here's my version. 

Friday, 22 November 2013

Carrot cupcakes with cream cheese frosting

These are really moist and fluffy. 
Baking them into individual cupcakes are easier to serve. 
This recipe is for 6 large cupcakes, if you have a 12 muffin tin to fill then just double up the recipe. 

1 large egg
70ml oil
100g light brown sugar
150g grated carrots
50g raisins
40g chopped walnuts

Sift together:
90g self raising flour
Pinch of salt
1/4. Tsp bicarbonate of soda 
1/4. Tsp ground cinnamon 
1/4. Mixed spice (I left this out)

Cream cheese frosting recipe:
125g cream cheese
25g butter (room temperature)
1/2. Tsp vanilla extract
150g icing sugar


Weight out all your ingredients and get ready to make this. 


Mix together the oil, brown sugar, and egg into a bowl and whisk lightly until the sugar has partly dissolve. 


Add in the grated carrots and chopped walnuts and mix well. 


Mix in the sifted flour and fold to combine the mixture.


Divide into 6 large cupcake cases or muffin cases.
Put into a preheated oven of 180c and bake for 20-25 minutes. 


Once baked, cool on a cooling rack and prepare the cream cheese frosting by mixing everything into a bowl and whisk. 
Put the frosting into a piping bag to decorate your cupcakes. Sprinkle with grated carrots and garnish with a half walnut (optional but makes the cupcakes look pretty)

This carrot cupcake is a great for picnics or small snack for children. 
I'm not a keen carrot cake eater but even I'm converted! 


Steps of some cakes I have made

Here are some cakes I have made and to show you how its done.
Hope you enjoy viewing my blog.
Chocolate Mousse cake
I had chocolate lacquer glaze left over from making a birthday cake the previous night, so I made these little cakes. I love to recreate new bakes with left over ingredients. Perhaps it's a way we learn a to make new recipe. Well, it certainly has for me. 

Mango Mousse cake made for my niece.



Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Choux Pastry


So.........."Choux pastry is a light pastry dough used to make profiteroles or eclaires.
Choux pastry has a high water content. The water in the mixture creates steam during cooking which forces the pastry to expand in volume, leaving it with a hollow centre and a light texture.".......

Wow! theres a lot of science in baking and I think I have learnt more than just how to make them.
These were on my to bake list and to have made two bakes in one, I'm pretty chuffed.

Apple Crumble Muffins

These are really good muffins. I cannot tell you how delicious these are.
They are really moist and stay soft for days (if they last that long)
If you love apple crumble then these are like a dessert in a cake.

Muffins are my favourites as they are effortless to make, the only fiddly part is making the crumble.
Here's the recipe and I recommend using sharp apples like Granny Smith's, the sourness really brings out the flavour.

60g caster sugar
90g plain flour ...
60g butter
Pinch of salt
(Rub ingredients together and set aside)

In Bowl A;
120g butter (melted)
120g light brown
2 eggs beaten
150g sour cream
(All in one bowl and mix to combine)

In Bowl B;
250g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp cinnamon powder
A pinch of salt
(In another bowl and sifted together)
100gm diced apple.

You can add raisins if you wish but I left them out because I don't like them.

Bowl B (dry ingredients) make a well and pour in Bowl A. Then in goes the fruits.
Mix about 10 times or until mixture is lumpy. Split mixture 3/4 full into muffin cases and spoon generous amount of crumble on each muffins. 

It's that simple!

 *Don't over mix it would make the muffins chewy and firm.
*Some flour is still visible but don't worry, it will all come together once in the oven.
Bake 180 for 20-25mins. Remember oven varies so test it with a skewer to see if it comes out clean.

 This recipe makes 12 - 14 muffins.

 You can use blueberries or other fruits and it will still taste amazing!



Sunday, 17 November 2013

Durian baked cheesecake

This is seriously not for the light hearted. 
Durian the 'King of Fruits' is strong and pungent.
The aroma is distinctive.
Just like marmite, you either love it or hate it.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Chocolate muffins

My daughter don't usually request for what she wants me to bake, but today she asked me to make those chocolate muffins I baked a few week ago. 

These are very simple to bake and I had sour cream left over so why not? 
This time I didn't make the ganache as I didn't have cream but these are pretty good on its own with out topping. 
If you love chocolate then you should try this Recipe

Muffins are my favourite to bake as doesn't involve any major whisking. 
Just two bowls, one dry and one wet ingredients. 
Pour wet into dry and fold 10 times then straight into the oven it goes. 
That's all. The washing up probably take longer than making it. 

These are the perfect 6! Kids fed and one happy mummy. 

Portugese egg tarts (pastéis de nata)

Here is my recipe for the Portuguese Egg Tarts you've been all waiting for.
I have adjusted this recipe to suit my taste, these are so yummy you can't stop at one. 
The pastry is crispy and the custard is creamy. 
A fantastic midday snack for the family or a tasty treat for your guests.  
This recipe makes 9 tarts.

One packet of ready rolled puff pastry 
120ml whipping cream
200ml fresh full fat milk 
3 egg yolks
60g sugar
1. Tbsp corn flour 
1/2. Tsp vanilla extract
Icing sugar & cinnamon powder for dusting

Preheat your oven to 230c and now prepare your custard. 

Egg Custard method: 

In a saucepan heat up the cream, milk & sugar on low until the sugar dissolves.
Add in the egg yolks, corn flour & vanilla extract and whisk the custard so it becomes smooth and coats the back of a spoon. 
Pour into a bowl and set aside. 

Roll out the ready prepared puff pastry and use a round pastry cutter cut out 9 round disc. 

Put your cut puff pastry straight into the muffin tin and mould with your fingers.
You don't need to grease the tin as the pastry has plenty of butter & it would come straight out after baking. Pour your custard into each tarts about 80% full. 
Your pastry will shrink as soon as it starts baking.

I have also tried using disposable tarts cases. I find the results are better than the muffin tin. 
The pastry puffs up better & the pastry did not shrink. The burnt spots were even. 

Bake in middle shelf for 20 -25 minutes. 
The pastry will puff up half way into baking. 
By 20 minutes after baking and you are not achieving the famous 'burnt spots' on your tarts, put it on the top shelf with the grill switch on for 5 minutes. Don't leave it in the oven to bake longer to try to get the spots as your custard would over cook. 
This is just my experience as with my first attempt I have tried it the custard was very dry & had a scrambled egg texture.

Leave to cool and if you like, dust with icing sugar and ground cinnamon.
The tarts are best eaten when warm and crispy.