Sunday, 25 December 2011

Guest Appearance 2 by Penguinni - Mushroom Zucchini Pizza

Dear had made the pizza crust from scratch.. delizioso!

a home made lunch - wanton noodles

this was a simple dish created to use up the leftovers in the fridge.

it was well-received by Dear; he said it was even better than Pontien's.... but i could not believe him totally.... ;)

though i think the pictures look quuuiiitteee gooooddd... 

Guest Appearance 1 by Penguinni - Oven-Roasted Chicken & Grilled Potato Skins

one of the first meals prepared by Dear. More to come......

the potato skins (even those w/o cheese) were awesome.. i really think he makes a great chef!

Apple Pie - using a lattice structure crust

i'd finally realized one of Dear's request! 

i'm glad i took an extra effort to make the pie crust from scratch instead of buying readymade frozen pie crust. 

Apple Pie 

Pie Crust (adapted from - for recipes that need double pie crusts 


2 1/2 cups --------------- all-purpose flour
1 cup --------------------- unsalted butter, cubed, frozen
1 tsp ---------------------- salt
1 tsp ---------------------- sugar
6 tbsp -------------------- ice-water


1. in a large mixing bowl, mix well flour, sugar and salt
2. cut in butter. mix until mixture resembles coarse meal
3. add ice-water 1 tbsp at a time until mixture just begins to clump together. do not over add water
4. remove dough from the large bowl and place in a mould on a clean surface. gently shape the dough mixture into 2 disks, work the dough enough just to form the round disks; do not over-knead
5. sprinkle a little flour around the disks and wrap each disk in plastic wrap. refrigerate for at least one hour and up to 2 days
6. remove one disk from refrigerator. let it sit at room temp for about 5-10mins and roll out on a well-flour surface into a 12-in circle (1/8-in thick).
7. carefully transfer the rolled-out dough onto a 9-in pie dish. gently press the pie dough down so that it lines the bottom and sides of pie dish. using a pair of scissors, trim the dough to within 1/2-in of the edge of the pie dish
8. add pie filling
9. roll out the second dough, as before, gently place pie dough on top of filling. pinch top and bottom of dough rounds firmly together. design the sides as you wish. (after rolling out the second disk, i cut it into strips)
10. score top of the pie with four 2-in long cuts

Apple Pie Filling (adapted from


115g --------------------- unsalted butter
2 tbsp -------------------- plain flour
60ml --------------------- water
100g --------------------- white sugar
110g --------------------- packed brown sugar
8 Granny Smith apples - peel, cored and sliced


1. preheat oven to 220degC
2. melt butter in a saucepan. stir in flour to form a paste. add water, sugars, and bring it to a boil. reduce heat and simmer...
3. place the bottom crust in pie dish. fill with apples, mounted slightly. cover with a lattice work crust.
4. gently pour the sugar-butter liquid over the crust, very slowly so that it does not run off
5. bake in the preheat oven for 15min
6. reduce the temp to 175degC and continue baking for 45 min until apples are soft

Christmas Cookies & Cards

the cookies here are the same sugar cookies in the earlier post. simple change the cookie cutters!

enjoy the photos!

christmas tree cookies.....

with guardian angels and christmas bells...

DIY packaging...

and finally DIY cards..

Teddy Bears for Jayden

for my girlfriend's baby bash for baby Jayden. splitting image of his papa.....

Teddy Bear Sugar Cookies (adapted from bisous a too)


300g ------------------ unsalted butter
100g ------------------ caster sugar
4 egg yolks
500g ------------------ flour
1 tbsp ----------------- corn flour
1 tsp ------------------ vanilla


1. preheat oven to 160degC
2. whisk butter and sugar until soft - don't over mix
3. add in the egg yolks and vanilla essence and mix
4. add in sift flour and corn flour
5. roll it out on a well-floured surface
6. use your favorite cookie cutter and cut out cookies
7. bake in preheated over for about 1/2 hr

the recipe called for icing decorations on the cookies but i did not. on their own, the sugar cookies are not that sweet. mickey mouse cookie cutter was used to maximise usage of the cookie dough..

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Chocolate Bundt Cake

this is actually a pound cake in a bundt mold. wanted to try out something in preparation for Christmas! Hohoho!

sadly, the pictures cannot really show how great the cake actually tasted. most of the comments i gathered were really positive. to perfect it, go with vanilla/chocolate sauce or vanilla ice cream..

to those who have tried it, i really hope you will crave for more, because i shall be baking more of it for others to try. one of my most satisfied bakes till date. ;)

Chocolate Bundt Cake (adapted from Tish Boyle's The Cake Book)


181g ---------------------- all-purpose flour
57g ----------------------- cake flour
92g ----------------------- dutch-processed cocoa power
2 1/4 tsp ----------------- baking powder
1/2 tsp ------------------- salt
340g --------------------- unsalted butter
500g --------------------- granulated sugar (i used only 380g)
4 large eggs
2 tsp ---------------------- vanilla extract
242g --------------------- sour cream (i replaced about 1/5 of it with plain yoghurt)


1. preheat oven to 163degC. grease the inside on a 10-in bundt pan and dust with flour
2. sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl and set aside
3. using an electric mixer, at medium speed, beat butter until very creamy (~2min). gradually beat in the sugar. increase speed of electric mixer to medium high and beat the mixture until well-blended and light (~4min)
4. reduce speed to medium. beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition
5. stir the vanilla extract into the sour cream.
6. now add the dry ingredient into the butter mixture in 3 additions, alternating with the sour cream mixture in 2 additions, mixing until just well-blended (note: the flour mixture is prone to splatter during mixing. use a splatter shield on the mixing bowl if you have)
7. scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top
8. bake the cake for 75 mins, or until a cake tester inserted into the centre comes out clean. cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for 15minutes. after that, invert the cake onto the rack and let it cool completely

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Feliz Navidad

I havent been updating my blog for a long time. too many life events but i have baked several stuffs. they shall be blogged about soon.

it is the first day of winter... Snowing is falling, Christmas bells are ringing. My favorite time of the year has come. lots of love, laughter and joy in the air.

wishing everyone and especially my Penguin, Mom, family and friends a lovely and merry Christmas...

and dedicated to everyone in my life:

my favorite-st christmas song..

Monday, 7 November 2011

Healthy Breakfast Breads - Banana Walnut Bread & Apricot Bread

Bread is one of my greatest loves in life. I have no idea why. I like to see bread, smell bread, buy bread and eat them! Baking them however is a challenge for a novice like me but....

One day...

I baked a banana walnut bread - yes, it is a loaf bread but definitely not cake-like. Full flavored and dense - just the way I like it...

But I was still not satisfied. I wanted to bake REAL bread - those that needed yeast and rising. And so...

Another one day...

I baked another bread... the apricot bread. This time, the entire process took me 3+ hours but i am so happy with the results.

Banana Walnut Bread (adapted from Women's Weekly)

  • 400-460 g mashed banana (overripe bananas)
  • 180 g brown sugar (original recipe called for 220 g)
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 40 g melted butter
  • 125 ml plain yoghurt (original recipe called for buttermilk)
  • 90 g mulberry molasses (original recipe called for treacle)
  • 225 g plain flour
  • 150 g self-raising flour (i used cake flour)
  • 2 tsp mixed spice (i used cinnamon)
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 80 g walnuts, toasted and chopped (not in original recipe)
  1. preheat oven to 180DegC. Grease 14cmX21cm loaf pan; line base and long sides with baking paper, extending paper 5cm over sides
  2. combine banana, sugar, eggs, butter, yoghurt and molasses in a large bowl. stir in sifted dry ingredients (do not over-mix). spoon mixture into pan.
  3. bake for 1 hour. stand bread in pan 10 mms before turing, top side up onto a wire rack for cooling

Apricot Bread (adapted from Good Housekeeping)

  • 450 g bread flour, plus extra to dust
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 25 g unsalted butter, diced and plus extra to grease
  • 75 g dried apricots, chopped
  • 2 tsp instant dried yeast
  • 2 tbsp mulberry molasses
  • milk to glaze
  1. put flour in a large bowl
  2. add b the salt and rub in the butter.
  3. stir in the apricots and yeast
  4. make a well in the middle and gradually work in the molasses and about 225ml hand-hot warm water to form a soft dough. Knead 8-10 min until smooth and then transfer dough into a greased bowl. 
  5. cover and leave to rise in a warm place for 1 1/4 hrs until double in size
  6. punch the dough to knock back, then divide in half. shape each portion into a small, flattish round and put on a well flour baking sheet.
  7. cover loosely and leave to rise for another 30 min
  8. preheat oven to 220degC and put a large baking sheet on the top shelf to heat up
  9. using a sharp knife, cut several slashes on each round and brush with a little milk (i must be so hungry that i totally forgot this step and went immediately into step 10.)
  10. transfer the two doughs onto the heated baking sheet. bake for 15 min, then reduce temperature to 190DegC and bake for a further 17 min until bread is risen and sounds hollow when tapped underneath. cool bread on a wire rack.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Oreo CupCakes

moving house is a lot of work. i wasn't in time for halloween and i also could not find halloween oreos in Singapore. Modified the halloween oreo cupcakes recipe from gingerbread bagels a little (love her foodblog!) and came up with normal oreo cupcakes. 

it is just less the color; still creamy and oreo-licious....

Oreo Cupcakes (adapted from gingerbreadbagel)

2 cups -------------------- plain flour ( i used cake flour too)
1 1/2 cups ---------------- sugar
2 tsp ---------------------- baking powder
1 tsp ---------------------- kosher salt ( i used normal salt)
1/2 cup ------------------- shortening, softened (i used buttercup luxury spread)
3/4 cup ------------------ whole milk
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tbsp -------------------- vanilla extract
7 Oreos, ground into coarse crumbs
4 cups ------------------- icing sugar
1/2 cup ------------------ unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup ------------------ shortening, softened (i used buttercup luxury spread)
1/2 tsp ------------------- vanilla extract
1/8 tsp ------------------- kosher salt
3 1/2 oz ------------------ heavy whipping cream (a little more than 1/3 cup)
10 Oreos, ground into fine crumbs
1. Mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt using an electric mixer
2. Then add in the shortening (the shortening should be very soft, almost melted), milk, eggs and vanilla extract and mix to low speed to combine. (about 1 minute) You don’t want to over mix the batter. Set the batter aside.
3. Put 7 Oreos in the food processor and grind them up into coarse crumbs. Throw them into the batter and fold them in.
4. Line a cupcake pan with liners. Using an ice cream scooper (i didn't use that), scoop the batter into each cupcake liner.
The cupcakes should be filled about 2/3 of the way. Make sure you don’t overfill them!
5. Bake the cupcakes at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes. Cool the cupcakes in the pan on a cooling rack for 10 minutes. Then take the cupcakes out of the pan and transfer them to a cooling rack.
Cool completely before frosting.
To make the frosting:
1. Sift the icing sugar into a bowl and set aside.
2. Using an electric mixer, mix together the shortening and butter for about 3-4 minutes on medium high speed.
3. On low speed, slowly add in the powdered sugar. Add in 1/2 cup at a time.
4. Once all of the powdered sugar is added, increase the speed to medium for a minute or two.
5. Slowly add in the heavy whipping cream on low speed. Then increase the speed to high and mix for 10 minutes. (no discount!)
Set the buttercream aside.
6. In a food processor, grind up 10 Oreos into fine crumbs. Add them to the buttercream and fold them in.
Assembling the cupcakes:
Put the buttercream in a piping bag fitted with a decorating tip. Pipe the buttercream onto the cooling cupcakes. Or you can simply frost them with a small spatula or knife.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Vanilla Kisses

BEFORE i plunge into making macarons which use expensive ground almonds instead of cheap plain flour, i decided to practice my piping skills with these cookies.. actually, i could also practice piping at the Icing Room but Dear and i know that we arent gonna eat much the cake full of whipped cream... so when i stumble upon this recipe, i knew instantly it will serve as a good practice. 

well, turned out that, piping needs practice! =P

aesthetics aside, the cookies tasteed pretty good. it fall apart easily when your teeth sink into it. think i read somewhere that some people call it "melting moments".. you get the idea. 

the only thing was......i was careless with the sugar... 

Vanilla Kisses (adapted from Women's Weekly)


125 g ------------ butter, soften
110 g ------------ caster sugar
1 ---------------- egg
35 g ------------- plain flour
100 g ------------ corn flour
35 g ------------- custard powder
35 g  ------------ self raising flour
1 tsp  ------------ vanilla extract (optional)

Vienna cream filling
60 g ----------- butter, soften
120 g --------- icing sugar
1 tsp ---------- vanilla extract
2 tsp ---------- milk


1. preheat oven to 200degC. grease and line two baking sheets
2. beat butter, sugar and egg until fluffy.
3. sift in the dry ingredients in two batches and stir well after each addition
4. spoon mixture into a pipe bag fitted with a 1cm wide tube. pipe 3-cm round mixtures, 3 cm apart onto baking sheets. bake for 10-15 min
5. meanwhile, prepare the vienna cream filling: beat butter and vanilla extract until as white as possible. mix in the icing sugar in two additions
6. when cookies are done, cool them on a wire rack
7when cooled, spoon 1-2tsp of vienna cream onto one cookie and top it with another cookie.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Cinnamon Sugar Duffin

says who that we cannot get the best of both worlds? well, you can.. simply by cross-breeding doughnuts and muffins! one advantage scientists claimed for cross-breeding is that offspring display the strengths of both parents. as i will illustrate here that Duffins, which essentially is a cross-breed between doughnuts and muffins, gives you the best of doughnuts and muffins. you get the a healthy doughnut, because it is baked rather than fried and you get a chewy muffin, like a doughnut..

Cinnamon Sugar Duffin (adapted from Bake Your Day)


220 g ---------------- plain four (i often mix plain flour with cake flour for baking)
1.5 tsp --------------- baking powder
1/2 tsp --------------- salt
1/3 cup -------------- canola oil
165 g --------------- caster sugar
1 large egg
3/4 cup -------------- milk

for the toppings:
113 g ---------------- butter (i omitted it)
75 g ----------------- caster sugar
1 tbsp --------------- ground cinnamon


1. Preheat oven to 176degC. line muffin tray with paper cups
2. combine flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. set aside
3. whisk together oil, sugar, egg and milk. add dry ingredients to wet and stir until combined. do not over mix
4. bake for 15-20 min until the tops are round, risen and golden. meanwhile, mix sugar and cinnamon meant for topping and melt the butter
5. remove muffins from pan while they are hot and dip the muffin tops into melted butter then roll into sugar-cinnamon mixture
6. let cool if desired

these duffins served as great snack while i moved house over the weekend.. Yippee!