Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Cakes galore

We had a long weekend early this month due to Chinese New Year. I have been a bit busy for the first 2 weeks of February doing some baking and here are the pictures of what I did.

White Velvet cupcake with dark chocolate ganache

Delicious Red Velvet cake I did for CNY gathering

Mini cupcake cakepops with left over mud cake and ganache

Chocolate Banana cake ala Secret Recipe for my other half's birthday

Last but not least, my biggest fondant cake project. I did this for my nephew & niece's birthday. It was load of fun though.
the back view

I am not posting any recipes in this entry, let me know if you are interested :)

Stir-fry Ground Chicken with Thai (Holy) Basil

I love Thai food, well who doesn't ? *lol* I like to order this dish whenever I have my meals at a Thai eatery or restaurant simply because it is a great one dish meal. It is usually eaten with steamed rice and a sunny side up egg, simple yet satisfying. I have always been wanting to make this at home. Coincidentally, I bought a pack of thai basil from a supermarket and it has been sitting for a few days in the fridge. I didn't want to waste it and so happened that I was thinking of this dish. I finally found a rather authentic recipe and truly satisfied with the flavour.

I like mine spicy, so I added some chopped chili padi to my portion. If you don't like too spicy, you can omit the chilli. I added the chilli towads the end instead of frying with the garlic as I need to take some portion out for the girls who don't take anything spicy. However, you can add it when frying the garlic.
The recipe:
500g ground chicken
9 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4T dark soy sauce
2T oyster sauce
5T fish sauce
1 1/2C fresh Thai basil
2 chilli padi, chopped (optional)
salt & pepper to taste
oil for stir frying
1. Heat a wok until the oil is hot, then stir in the garlic
2. Add ground chicken and stir till meat is thoroughly cooked
3. Add soya sauce, oyster sauce keep stirring till the sauce blends into the chicken
4. Then add fish sauce, salt & pepper to taste. Stir and mix well
5. Add basil leaves and continue stirring, you should smell the basil by now
6. Throw in the chilli and stir for a 1 minute and serve it with steamed rice

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Fragrant Fried Pancakes

It was one of those days where I wanted to try making something a little bit different. I had quite a stash of scallions and sesame seeds and happened to find a recipe that uses both. It is pretty easy to make and lovely to eat it on its own or dip it with some thick gravy like curry, stew or even chilli dip.

This recipe is taken off the book Dim Sum Kitchen by Tan, Melody. I just estimate the amount for the spring onions, sesame seed and salt.

250g All purpose/Plain flour
100g boiling water
10g warm water
4g instant yeast (dissolve into 2T warm water)
5g spring onion
2.5g sesame seed
5g salt
vegetable oil for pan frying

1.Dice spring onion and put it aside
2. Pour flour into basin/bowl and add 100g boiling water and stir till flour is like bread crumbs
3. Dissolve yeast in abit of warm water about 2T
4. Once yeast started to bubble add to the flour and add another 10g warm water, spring onion, salt and stir
5. Cover with cloth for an hour and then knead again
6. Roll into into pancakes about 0.5cm thickness and sprinkle sesame seeds on both sides
7. Heat pan and add oil, pan fry on medium heat
8. Flip when one side turns golden brown and fry till it turns the same colour.
9. Remove, cut into small pieces and serve.

Japanese Curry from scratch ...

My first experience having Japanese curry was about 20years ago during my first visit to Japan. I wasn't very intrigue by it as it was more sweet and tasted totally different from the curry that I am used to. However, I got pretty much accustomed to it by adding some chilli sauce to go with it *lol* My children do eat curry but their spicy threshold is still pretty low. So to get them used to eating a dish with plenty of spices, I made this for them to see which one they prefer. Apparently this one wins hands down and it has become one of the regular dish I cook specially for them.

This dish is not difficult to make, I got it from the Japanese cooking show, Dosanko Cooking which features easy authentic Japanese dishes. The spice level depends on the curry powder and the chilli sauce that you used.

300-400g chicken, cute into cubes
2 clove garlic,minced
2T butter
2T plain flour
2T curry powder, add abit of water to make it to a paste
2T chilli sauce
2T ketchup
1T soya sauce (i used light soya)
1t salt
1 medium yellow onion, quartered
potatoes and carrots, cute into bite size chunks

1. Melt butter and add garlic, fry till fragrant
2. Add flour and stir to fry till colour changes then add water and kept stirring
3. Add chicken chunks and stir till the chicken turns white
4. Add curry paste and other sauces, stir them till the chicken are well coated, add water bit by bit to get the consistency that you like
5. Add onions, potatoes and carrots, let it simmer till tender
6. Add salt to taste