Sunday, May 30, 2010

WHITE AND RED PORRIDGE

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This porridge is a traditional one prepared for special occasion such as the birth of a baby, passing an exam or promotion at work. It is made of rice or glutinous rice and had two different colors hence its name.

The white is obtained by adding the coconut milk and salt then separated. Palm or brown sugar is added to the balance of the porridge. When serving the white portion is dotted on top of the red. This tradition is almost forgotten since the younger generation prefer other dessert to mark their special moment.

INGREDIENTS

1 and 1/2 cups glutinous rice (soak 30 minutes)
1 cup coconut milk
3/4 cup palm sugar
1 pandan leaf knotted
salt to taste
water

METHOD

* Put the glutinous rice, water, pandan leaf and salt in a pot. Boil until rice turns soft.

* Now add the coconut milk, stir until boiling. Remove about 1/2 cup of the porridge.

* Boil palm sugar with some water, strain.Now add the sugar syrup to the balance and stir well. Remove from heat.

* Place a ladleful of red colored porridge and dot on top with the white portion.

Friday, May 28, 2010

SESAME AND OAT COOKIES AND BEAUTIFUL CARDS

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Since we are nearing the end of the week, baked this melt in the mouth cookies which is not so sweet and tasted great. Added rolled oat and black sesame seed for this recipe, really perfect combo, contains goodness of oat and sesame seed.

The dough is too soft to handle but managed to roll them into small ball. You can refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes to make it firmer.

INGREDIENTS

2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
1/2 cup rolled oat
5 tablespoons black sesame

METHOD

* Sift flour and baking powder, add rolled oat and sesame seed, mix well.

* Cream butter and sugar until creamy, add vanilla essence.

* Now add butter mixture with flour and form into pliable dough.

* Shape the dough into small ball then flatten and place onto baking pan. Preheat oven @ 170 C.

* Bake for 10-15 minutes . Remove from pan after 5 minutes and cool on wire rack.

* Store in an airtight container once it is completely cool.

CARD

My blogger friend, Priya Prashanth has sent this beautiful card to mark her 250th post. Thanks for sharing this with me. Keep posting dear..

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Thanks to Sanyukta Gour for sharing this on completing her first month of blogging, really admire your creativity!

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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

BEST PIZZA DOUGH


Pizza is one of favorite foods loved by young and old. Today it is available around the clock in shopping malls and popular food joint including home delivery not to mention in supermarket too.

But nothing can beat home made pizza where you could add whatever topping, sauces and cheese tailored to our taste.

The recipe below yields 6 mini pizza, the crust is fantastic, much better than the store bought, really beautiful crust with perfect crunch. So far this is the best pizza base I ever cooked.

BEST PIZZA DOUGH
Yield   :   6 mini pizza

INGREDIENTS

3 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoon dry yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
5 tablespoons melted butter
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons milk powder
1 cup warm water

TOPPING

Tomato sauce
Chicken, seafood
Capsicum, onion
Cheese, tomato

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METHOD

* Combine yeast with sugar and water, keep for 15 minutes until frothy.

* In a mixing bowl, combine flour, butter, salt, milk powder, water and yeast mixture. Knead by hand for 10 minutes for use stand mixer. Keep covered for 2 hours.

* Deflate the dough, divide into 6 balls. Using rolling pan, shape into circle and place them onto baking pan.

* Apply the sauce, sprinkle the topping and let sit for 30 minutes. Towards the end of proofing time, preheat oven @ 200 C.

* Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Enjoy!

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Monday, May 24, 2010

PULUT SERIKAYA

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This is two layered traditional dessert from  Malaysia/Singapore made of glutinous rice and topped with green custard.

Instead of steaming the sticky rice, I used a rice cooker to do the job. For health reasons use only water but you could use coconut milk to cook the rice. For the top layer, blend pandan leaves with water to extract juice but if unavailable just add a drop of green food colouring. It's eggless too but you could add an egg to the custard if you wish.For more information about screwpine leaves, go through this link:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pandanus_amaryllifolius

INGREDIENTS

1 and 1/2 cups glutinous rice soak 1 hour
1 and 1/2 cups water of coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon salt

CUSTARD

3/4 cup wheat flour
1/4 cup corn flour
8 tablespoons sugar
1 and 1/2 cups coconut milk
1/2 cup pandan juice (blend 3 pandan leaves with water)
1 egg (optional)
green food coloring
1/2 teaspoon salt

METHOD

* Wash and drain the rice. Put the rice, water and salt into the rice cooker and let it cook.

* Transfer the rice onto greased shallow 8 inches tray and press with spatula to level top.

* Heat the steamer and bring the water to boil. Heat the glutinous rice, scratch top with fork.

* Add all ingredients for custard and strain. Pour this on top of the cooked rice, steam for 20 minutes with medium heat. Recommended to cover the lid with clean towel to avoid water dripping.

* Cool for 3-4 hours before cutting.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

CURRY BUN



I used to buy this bun from a nearby bakery. This is one of my son's favorite bread. It is stuffed with potato but it could be too spicy and may not cater to those who can't take hot stuff. When baking this, I made sure they turn out extra spicy. My son really loved this and i would be baking more often for his sake. Besides potato, you could use chicken or meat for a change.

INGREDIENTS

3 cups all purpose flour
1 and 1/2 teaspoons dry yeast
2 tablespoons milk powder
4 tablespoons melted butter
2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup warm water
1 teaspoon salt

FILLING

Curried potato

For the preparation of the filling kindly refer to this link:
http://treatntrick.blogspot.com/2010/04/baked-curry-puff.html

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METHOD

* Mix together sugar, yeast and warm water in a small bowl, keep for 10 minutes or until frothy.

* In a mixing bowl, put together flour, milk powder, butter and salt, add the yeast mixture and knead by hand for 10 minutes until smooth and elastic or use your stand mixer.

* Keep covered for 2 hours or double in size. Deflate the dough and divide into 14 balls.

* Roll out the ball into circle, stuff with the filling and place it onto baking pan, covered for 45 minutes. Preheat oven @ 180 C towards the end of proofing time.

* Brush with butter and bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

* After removing from oven, brush again with butter. Enjoy!

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Thursday, May 20, 2010

WAJIK

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I'm craving for wajik (sweetened palm sugar glutinous rice pudding) now. This is a traditional festival sweet my mum used to make.

The process of making this kuih, first you have to cook the glutinous rice either by steaming or use rice cooker which is simplest and safest method, can't go wrong, just dump the rice in the cooker it will do the rest. Secondly prepare the sugar and coconut milk syrup until it thickens, and that requires constant stirring. Only then the cooked rice is added. What I have used here is low fat coconut milk but feel free to use normal ones.

Another item is screwpine leaves that was used but if unavailable you could omit this since the leaves are for fragrance only.

INGREDIENTS

1 cup white glutinous rice (soak 4 hours)
1 cup water
1 cup palm sugar
3/4 cup coconut milk
1/4 cup water
salt
2 pandan leaves knotted

METHOD

* Rinse the glutionus rice several times and soak at least 4 hours.

* Put in the rice, 1 cup water and salt into a rice cooker and on the switch, occasionally stir and let it cook. Once it is cooked, stir to separate and let cool.

* In a non stick pot, combine sugar and water, bring to boil, strain. Put back the syrup into the pot together with coconut milk, salt and pandan leaves. Keep stirring until thicken and bubbles appear on top. Discard the pandan leaves.

* Now add the cooked rice, stir until rice fully coated by syrup and leaves side of pot.

* Pour onto greased shallow tray and let cool.

* When completely cool, slice as per your desired shape and serve.


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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

RED BEAN BUNS

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After successful attempts with bread making, love to share this beautiful bread which is stuffed with red bean paste. Other fillings such as chocolate, custard or kaya would be the best alternative. The method of preparation is almost the same as my earlier post except the dough is rolled into oval shaped, stuffing the filling on one end while the other end is cut into thin strips then roll it up and bend upwards. To get the idea how this forms, please look at the photo below.

INGREDIENTS

3 cups all purpose flour
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 and 1/2 teaspoons dry yeast
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons milk powder
1 cup warm water
red bean paste

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Photo by Resepidiana

METHOD

* Combine together dry yeast, sugar and warm water, keep 15 minutes until frothy.

* In a mixing bowl combine flour, butter, salt, milk powder and yeast mixture and knead for 10 minutes until smooth or use stand mixer. Keep covered for 2 hours.

* Gently deflate the dough, divide into 16 balls. Roll out the dough into oval shape, put in the filling on one end while the other one cut into thin strips. Roll it up and bend upward (see photo).

* Place the bun on baking pan, keep covered for one hour, towards the end of raising time, preheat oven @ 180 C. Brush the top with butter.

* Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown, brush again with butter. Enjoy...

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Sunday, May 16, 2010

VERMICELLI KESARI

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This is the famous North/South Indian dessert using vermicelli. For those unfamiliar with this, please see the attached photo below which is easily obtainable from any Indian shop. I have made it with milk for a creamier and richer taste but it could be done with just water. Another adjustment is the amount of sugar used, do add more if you have sweet tooth and fry the nuts and raisin in cooking oil not ghee (clarified butter). It tasted excellent with just right amount of sweetness. This recipe is a keeper, would definitely cook again.



INGREDIENTS

1 cup vermicelli
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup water
1 cup evaporated milk
1 tablespoon butter
i tablespoon broken cashew or almond
1 tablespoon raisin
a pinch of cardamom powder
yellow food coloring

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METHOD

* Heat the oil and fry the nuts and raisin, remove and keep aside. With same oil fry the vermicelli until light brown, remove.

* In the same pan, add water and milk, bring to a boil then add the vermicelli, keep stirring until vermicelli turns soft.

* Add coloring, cardamom and sugar, stir until thicken. Put in the raisin and nut.

* Transfer onto shallow tray to set. Serve warm.

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Friday, May 14, 2010

OATMEAL CHOCOLATE COOKIES

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After repeated requests by my son, I'm going to show how to bake this healthy cookies using vegetable oil and not overly sweet like other recipes found on net. They are really great to work with and turn out chewy and marvelous, you can's stop eating them, very addictive indeed.

Grind half of the rolled oat and the balance used as it is, next time would try with other combination such as dried cranberries, coconut and fruit. Do not over bake, once it turns light brown, remove from the oven and let the cookies sit in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to wire rack.


INGREDIENTS

1 and 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk
1 cup oatmeal
1/2 cup rolled oat
1/2 cup chocolate chip
1/2 cup raisin
1 teaspoon vanilla essence

METHOD

* Preheat oven @ 170 C. Sift flour and baking powder.

* Combine flour, salt, oatmeal, rolled oat, chocolate chip and raisin in a mixing bowl.

* Beat oil, sugar, salt, milk and essence until well combined.

* Mix together flour mixture and oil to form a soft pliable dough.

* Shape into small ball then flatten, place onto baking tray.

* Bake for 15 minutes then remove from pan after 5 minutes.

* When completely cool, store in an airtight container.

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Wednesday, May 12, 2010

SPICY FISH IN COCONUT MILK

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Fish is always my family's favorite food, especially if it is simmered in hot and spicy gravy like this one. For a long time I have not cooked this dish, so my son requested to prepare the fish using bird's eye chili. Preferably selecting less bony fish if you are feeding small children and it turns out very spicy but delicious. One could fry the fish first or simply cook in gravy - either way it is superb.

INGREDIENTS

4-5 slices fish
15 bird's eye chili (adjust to your taste)
1 cup coconut milk
1 and 1/2 cup water
1 inch fresh turmeric root
1 medium lime obtain the juice
2 lemon grass bruised
salt

METHOD

1. Wash the fish with lemon juice, drain.

2. Blend together bird's eye chili and turmeric with some water.

3. Pour water, coconut milk, blended ingredients, lemon grass and salt in a pot. Stir until boiling.

4. Slide in the fish and bring to boil until fish is cooked.

5. Remove from heat, add lime juice and it is ready to eat.

Monday, May 10, 2010

RAISIN AND OATMEAL BUN

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Back in action, kungfu with my dough again, this time around playing with oat and raisin, can't believe my eyes how this bread really swelled from the original size once I have baked them. Trust me, it's worth making, turns out wonderful and great to dip with a cuppa. Although you could use the yeast mixture after 10 minutes, I let the yeast sit for an hour then mix the dough. Another tip is to let the dough ferment longer and by doing that the bread turns softer and fluffier. What you need are:

INGREDIENTS

2 and 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup rolled oat (grind)
2 teaspoons dry yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons melted butter
2 tablespoons milk powder
1 cup warm water
3/4 cup raisin soaked 30 minutes, drained

METHOD

* Combine yeast, sugar and warm water in a bowl, keep aside for 10 minutes or until foamy.

* In a mixing bowl, mix together flour, oatmeal, salt, butter, raisin, milk powder and yeast mixture. Knead by hand for at least 10 minutes or use stand mixer until smooth. Keep covered for 2 hours.

* Gently deflat the dough and divide into 10 balls. Place the bun onto greased pan and let rise for 1 hour. Towards the end of raising time, preheat oven @ 180 C.

* Brush top with melted butter and bake for 15-20 minutes. After removing from oven brush again with butter. Enjoy!

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Saturday, May 8, 2010

HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN BEAUTY PRODUCTS AND SPECIAL CARDS



We spend a enormous amount of money on beauty products just to look pretty. How many of us know that there are simple homemade solutions that are available from your own kitchen. Give it a try religiously but one can't expect changes just by trying it out once but definitely you will see miracles if you apply it daily.

The most significant advantages of using the homemade products are that they are inexpensive, easily obtainable from your kitchen and allergy free, made from natural resources, totally no chemical is used and fresh, no worries about the shelf life of the product. There are several commercially-made beauty products that often do more harm than good, causing allergic reaction.

You'll find more details about how to make your own beauty products from this video. Will share a lot more beauty secrets in my next entry. If you want to know more about candle nut, check out this link : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Candle_nut

CARD

Happy Mother's Day to all and have a great weekend to celebrate this special occasion. Thanks to ELLY for sending this beautiful card for Mother's Day.

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Another one received from Love2Cook, thanks dear..

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Thursday, May 6, 2010

CHOCOLATE RICE CAKE

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My hand is really itching to bake since we had nothing for teatime. Normally would prefer baking rather than frying snack thus cut down unnecessary fat in our diet. Baked this simple cake, really easy and delicious. Since my family love to eat cake and cookies regularly so I need to choose one that is not very rich, used less fat and this one falls into the category. Let's bake...

INGREDIENTS

2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup milk
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 cup chocolate rice
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla essence

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METHOD

1. Sift flour, baking soda and baking powder into a mixing bowl.

2. Preheat oven @ 180 C, Mix together chocolate rice and the sifted flour.

3. Beat together butter, essence and sugar then add the milk.

4. Combine the milk mixture with dry ingredients, mix well.

5. Pour into 7 inches greased pan, bake for 25-30 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.

6. Cool 5 minutes and remove from pan.

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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

YEAST PANCAKE

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Hello everyone how do you do? Hope all is fine....

Really don't know what to serve for breakfast, suddenly my heart says how about pancake, it's very simple and fulfilling too. Next step is to check whether I have all ingredients on hand. Lucky for me, shortly after entering the kitchen I whipped up this fluffy pancake.  Although it takes a longer time to prepare because of fermentation it is worth the waiting - turns out wonderful.

This time used red bean paste bought from the store for the filling but you could use chocolate, kaya or even fruits or simply drizzle with honey, all are up to you. Here's the recipe:

INGREDIENTS

2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons dry yeast
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 cup warm water
1 and 1/2 cup warm milk
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons melted butter
oil to grease the pan

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METHOD

* Combine yeast, sugar and warm water in a small bowl. Keep 10 minutes or until frothy.

* In a mixing bowl combine flour, salt, butter and milk. Stir until no lumps.

* Add yeast mixture to the flour and stir well. Keep covered for one hour.

* Lightly grease the pan, pour 1/2 cupful of batter and turn when bubbles appear on top and cook the other side.

* Repeat the process until batter is used up. Place a piece of pancake on a plate, stuff with desired filling and fold into half. Enjoy..

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Sunday, May 2, 2010

BAKED PAKODA

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This is one of the most mouth watering and delicious Indian snacks normally deep fried in oil until crispy. Made of besan (chickpeas flour) which is rich in protein, carbohydrates but gluten free. It is more flavorful thickener than wheat flour. The same flour is used to make bonda, pakora, papadum, bhaji and many more in Indian cooking. I too love to eat this but hesitant since it is fried. So tried the baked version, it turns out amazing minus the oil, we enjoyed having it with a cup of tea.


INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup wheat flour
1/2 cup besan (gram flour)
2 tablespoons rice flour
1 onion chopped
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons oil
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
2 tablespoons coriander leaves
salt to taste
water
oil to grease the pan

METHOD

* Preheat oven @ 190 C and grease the baking pan.

* Combine together wheat flour, besan, rice flour, onion, chili powder, oil, fennel, coriander leaves and salt in a mixing bowl.

* Gradually add water to form a thick dough.

* Drop a teaspoonful of dough onto baking pan.

* Bake for 10 minutes until golden brown. Enjoy your healthy snack with a cup of tea.

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