Friday, August 12, 2011

Sable Viennois

I like my cookies with personalities. I like the naughty and nutty peanut butter cookies and the hippie, carefree oatmeal raisins. I love the crisp and sharp gingersnaps and the fun and happy chocolate chip. Gingerbread biscuits are wise and soft and caring. Snickerdoodles and crazy and kooky. Meringues and sweet and simple. French macarons are elegant and... french.

That being said, i think that the one cookie that REALLy lacks a personality are butter cookies. or shortbread. potato, potahto. So plain! So dry! So bland!

I don't know why i decided that sables, or french butter cookies, would be my first attempt at baking such cookies. To tell you the truth, i didn't know they were butter cookies until i read the recipe. I was lured by the pretty piped cookies i had seen in the picture. (WARNING! do not be lured by pictures. Except for mine. Mine are worth the lure)

But what can i say? The french make everything a little better. The excessive amount of vanilla really gave the little cookies OOMPHFT! and it was not as dry or bland as their shortbread counterparts.

What do you know? i may like butter cookies after all.

P.S. yes, i was baking during my prelim exam period. but do as i say, not as i do! But in my defense, baking is theraputic for me and it really helps me to calm myself down whenever i get the wrong value for 'x' for the umpteenth time.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Phyllo Almond Roll

Yes, I am back.
No, i have not exploded from eating excessive amounts of granola. I'm tougher than that.

My exams are coming up and they're going to last pretty long. I have my prelims then application and entrance examinations then my O levels, so i'll be pretty tight for time.

So I probably won't be baking/blogging as much. I'll be doing much eating though. Eating helps me study better.

In the meantime, for those of us who DO NOT have crazy exams lined up for them (lucky ducks), make this phyllo almond roll. It's like a rose macaroon wrapped up in pastry. And not as fickle. Eat some with vanilla ice cream an it's to die for.

What is the square root of two?

Friday, July 29, 2011

Peanut Butter Banana Granola

I feel like Elvis everytime i eat this.

Be warned though! this recipe makes a measly mount if you are known to consume excessive amounts of toasted oats.
(especially since this one has peanut butter)

The only way i justified finished the whole batch in a day (Alone!) was that it was full of good-for-me peanut butter, and natural sweeteners and nuts. Good, right?

I hope so.

I got a bit carried away with the photography this time round, so i thought i would take all of you on a virtual tour of my new favourite food.

I know your stomach is growling. Man i can hear it from here. Do yourself a favour and whip up a batch so that your tummy will stop that nonsence.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Oven Baked 'Fries'

You want fries with ZERO guilt but still crisp and fry-like?

Well, here it is folks!
The ultimate fry-less fry does exist, and let me tell you, it's even better than the real thing.

Beaten egg whites give them their crisp exterior, and the eggs also help the salt and pepper and spices cling to them.
In fact, if you didn't tell me that these were fry-free, i would have thought this was the full-guilt version!

So breathe out and keep your fat pants in your closet.
This is a fry for all.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Cookie Dough

I have realised i have been posting ice cream mix-ins and what-have-yous.
What can i say? i am in an ice cream phase.

The best part of cookie dough?
You don't even have to wait for this baby to bake/chill/set/cool/harden.

You just chuck it all in, whisk it together, and if you've got no ice cream to mix it into or sprinkle over, just pop a huge chunk into your mouth.

Done and done.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Vanilla Ice Cream

No one should survive without the perfect vanilla ice cream recipe.
Don't have an ice cream maker?
No one should survive without an ice cream maker.

Goodness knows where i will be without mine (probably in the corner licking plastic-tasting factory-made strawberry Popsicles, but anyway)

If you're more of a wild-wacky-explosion-in-your-mouth-flavour kind of ice cream person; Never fear. We add loads of other ingredients to this basic recipe to jazz it up a bit.

Feel like some hokey pokey?

Cookie dough ice cream is also a staple here, and the perfect cookie dough recipe will be coming your way as soon as i dig out some old pictures of them (or, make a new batch so i can take more photos) (and eat it along the way)

Don't you love how photography is such a good excuse to pig out?

Other variants of this recipe include rum and raisin, strawberry ripple. Or any ripple of your choice, chocolate chip, chocolate shell, chocolate ganache ripple (here's the ganache), brownie batter, blondie batter...

And for the daring, vanilla ice cream filled choux puffs with melted ganache smothered all over.
(Here of the choux recipe, and here for the ganache)

And now, see? i am hungry again.

What can i do?

Eating another scoop of this is my only choice. you see what this does to me? Off you go now. Let me sneak another scoop out of the freezer.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Hokey Pokey

I hate going to the dentist.
I hate the way their rubber gloves taste and I hate the gas tube they put at the back of your throat.
I hate the drill they use to srub your pearly whites (although in this case i doubt they would be truly pearly if your at the dentist for a cleaning)
More than ever, i hate the way they tell you to STAY AWAY FROM SUGAR.

Hokey Pokey.
If you think saying the word is fun, wait until you say it with loads of hokey pokey in your mouth.

If your the prim and proper type, you may call this 'Honeycomb".
Nevertheless, i'll bet you can't resist a bit of 'honeycomb' every now and then.

Come on, everybody loves 'em a little hokey pokey.
Yes. Even your dentist.

If your a'searchin' for the perfect vanilla ice cream recipe, I have the perfect one.
Give me a few days to type it out and fancy it up a bit and i'll post it over here.
(UPDATE: Here is your future best friend, the vanilla ice cream recipe)

Monday, July 11, 2011

Almond Biscotti

What is a cuppa good joe without one of these babies?

I love biscotti.
Whoever came up with the idea of dunking these crisp, nutty cookies into piping hot caffine is a genius.

He deserves a nobel peace prize.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Sugee Cake

This is a typical Eurasian cake.
We have it all the time, anytime. At birthdays and weddings and anniversaries and christmas and new years and every other day we can think of.

Anytime is sugee cake time.

And it's easy to come across a horrid sugee cake.
Too dense, too greasy, collasped, too sweet, too--

un sugee cake like.

Growing up, my grandfather made the best sugee cakes. I swear. In fact, my sister ever proclaimed 'No one can make better sugee cake than grandpa except Jesus."

i struggle to imagine Jesus baking sugee cake, but i am sure he would have loved it.

It uses an unhealthful amount of eggs and butter, but hey. It's sugee cake. You can spare a bit of indulgence.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Pineapple tarts

Alright, arguably, this isn't really a tart.
But it is a cookie that is usually shaped like one. a small, cookie sized tart base with a rounded ball of pineapple filling right smack in the middle. We used to have it every Christmastime.

But the one thing about these 'tarts' is that sometimes, you would have to eat the pastry without the filling or the other way around. And you can't have that! The pineapple filling and buttery, crumbly pastry go so well together it would be a waste to even spend a nibble-full without either one.

S we solved the problem by encasing the whole ball of pineapple filling with a layer of crust. Sort of like a cake ball slash chocolate truffle. Problemo solved!

although, now, it isn't really a tart anymore, is it?

If you really have no clue on what pineapple filling is...
neither do I.

I just get it ready-made fuss-free, from my neighbourhood baking shop.

But if you're up to the challenge, i have found a wonderful recipe for you to make your own.

Or if you're really a lazy potato but still wish to reap the benefits of this crumbly confection, just thicken some pineapple jam. Won't be AS good, but still pretty darn delicious!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


Is this a cake? A tart? A pie? A meringue? A giant, sweet, chewy cookie?

I will never know.

But one this is for sure: I love pavlovas. And so simple to make! Everyone always has extra egg whites in their fridge, don't they? Or is it just me?

Instead of freaking out over a batch over macarons, I decided to give Pavlovas a go. We didn't have a giant supply of berries to garnish this dish, but strawberries tasted pretty darn good with this egg white slash sugar concoction.

It will be MAGICAL if you had kiwis, or cherries, or any other berry for that reason. And don't feel the need to stop there. i hear that they are pretty good with caramelised pears. If you've got the time (and patience) for that. Whipped cream lovers can pile 'em high on this. Or if you're just a jam baby, I place several dollops of good ol' blueberry bonne maman on mine.

I made several smaller pavlovas with this recipe because i find slicing a giant pavlova might just result in getting covered in Pavlova dust (tip: it does happen). SO i had one with blueberry jam, one with fig jam, one with marmalade...

Yes, you see where i am going.

Anyway, I would just like to send a little shout out to everyone there reading my blog. It's so humbling to know that there are others out there reading my odd recipes and critiquing my photos. But do not be silent! i am a chatty girl, and i adore comments.

so if you feel like telling me a recipe turned out scrumptious (hopefully) or darn-i-may-need-to-buy-a-new-oven-this-thing-just-exloded bad (hopefully not). DO NOT HESITATE to leave a comment.

i get lonely, you know.

And being a foodie blogger, there is nothing more that i love than reading other people's foodie adventures and expeditions and experiments so leave a link if you have tried out something you think i might like!

Alright. It's pretty late and i'll be having dinner soon. That means dessert after. And we are out of pavlovas. Ah, what to do?

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Ricotta and Almond Cake

I love cheesecakes, but i am tired of having the same old classic new york cheesecake time after time.

Gingersnap crust with cream cheese filling? Sure it's delicious, but after a while, aren't your taste buds just crying of any other cake, any other cheesecake?

This is unusual cheesecake number 2. Previously, I tried a Japanese sponge cheesecake. This one is an Italian recipe, and calls for ricotta cheese.

Like mascarpone in northern-Italian cuisine, Ricotta is a favorite component of many Italian desserts, such as cheesecakes and cannoli. There are also kinds of cookies that include ricotta as an ingredient.

We had a tub of expiring ricotta in the fridge, so what could be a better excuse than this to experiment with unusual cheesecake no. 2?

A ricotta and almond cake. If you're out of almonds, walnuts work as well. Actually, the original recipe called for walnuts, i just used all of mine making my coconut maple granola.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Apple Almond Tart

Apple and almonds together is the classier version of peanut butter and jelly.

Two so completely different ingredients in both texture, taste and tartness, yet they seem come together in a out-of-this-world, well-i-couldn't-have-guessed way.

I love this tart.

ALmond meal is pretty pricy, but this tart?
It's worth it.

Looking for an out-of-this-world, insanely good pastry recipe to accompany this tart? Here it is!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Chocolate Cake Pops

I am a terrible mess in the kitchen.

And so you can imagine the chocolate on the walls, sprinkles on the floor, cake bits all over my coutertops while i was making these cake balls.

but despite being a huge setback on your new year's resolution to keep things tidy AT ALL TIMES, these cake pops are worth it.

Nest i am going to try a carrot cake pop. I have to.

The Ganache recipe is over here and One-Bowl chocolate cake recipe is over here.
Hop to it!

Chocolate Ganache

Add a splash of rum if you are feeling indulgent.

One-Bowl Chocolate Cake

This, essentially, is a diet chocolate cake.

What am I doing baking a diet cake when i am in no need of a diet?

Well, i think i have mentioned before that i am not a chocolate-cake lover. Or, in that case, a brownie lover. I love my chocolate but i love it plain. Straight out of the packet, a chunk of a bar. I will name my future cat Cadbury.

So what do i do when i FEEL like eating a chocolate cake but i know that about 99% of the recipe on the Internet will give me a dense, oogey gooey rich chocolate cake?

I google "Light Chocolate Cake Recipe'.

It took a fair amount of searching and skipping recipes because of horrible review, but i eventually found this one. I was skeptical at first. A cake made out of Olive oil? no BUTTER? But the review were phenomenal. SO i had to try it out.

It did not taste like a diet cake.
At all.

It sort of tasted like one of those box-cake mixes i love so much. Sans the preservatives and artificial flavouring. My sister, who isn't terribly fond of chocolate confectioneries as well, whacked about 1/3 of the cake by dinnertime.

You don't have to be on a diet to eat this. but if you ARE on a diet. Say hello to your new best friend!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Cinnamon Sugar Apple Chips

Have you ever had the irristable urge to hop out of your house to the nearest seven-eleven to invest in a good old packet of Lays sour cream and onion?

I know i have.

It's not a particularly good habit.
But i love chips! i love the thin crisp crunch i get whenever i bite down on them.

Until i discovered these.

Although they require a pretty long pre-craving preparation time (2 hours in the oven!) it can be easily solved by whipping (or slicing) up a new batch every time your previous one dissapears.

and trust me, that's what they do.
They dissapear.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookies

What kind of baker would i be if i didn't have a chocolate chip cookie staple recipe?

And these cookies are 'da bomb.
crisp and brown on the edges and gooey and chewy and divine in the middle.

Man, I am still hungry.

If you want to shake it up a little, add white chocolate chips. Or butterscotch chips. Or peanut butter chips.
Well, whatever floats your boat.

I love walnuts and semisweet hersheys bake-able chocolate morsels.

Now ponder this: Should i ask for a giant tower of chocolate chips cookies for my sixteenth birthday 'cake'?
Fancy Schmancy sweet sixteen cakes are so overrated.

I'll have a leaning tower of choc. chip goodness.

1. i don't need to CUT the cake into slices
2. You don't need to feel bad asking the hostess to cut you another slice. just nip one right off the tower.
3. i like cookies more than cake
4. i ESPECIALLY love these cookies

1. i might finish the whole cake myself

well, then.
it looks like i am having a birthday cookie tower.