- 300ml double cream
- 150ml single cream
- Concentrated raspberry juice (Cook the frozen raspberry (±200g) with a squeeze of 1/2 lemon juice and 1/4 cup water. Cook until the raspberry totally broken up. Strain the juice with a strainer, and discard the seeds. Pour the juice back to the pan and cook until the juice thicken.) Set aside to cool.
- 1/2 cup of syrup (dissolve some sugar with some water and bring it to a boil), to taste. Set aside to cool.
This a ch"easy"t way of making ice cream without ice cream maker. I actually can't see why do we need an ice cream maker. (*) The process of making ice cream is quite simple. Firstly, you have to prepare the custard whether you have an ice cream maker or not. Without an ice cream maker, you pour it to a freeze proof container and put the custard uncover in the freeze for an hour or so until the edge of the custard starting to harden. Take it out and put the semi-frozen custard in a large bowl, and whisk it thoroughly. Pour the mixture back to the container (**), cover, and freeze it until the ice cream is ready to be served.
For this easy to make raspberry ice cream, you need:
First whisk the double, single and syrup in a large bowl until they form soft peak and hold it own shapes. Add 1/2 of the raspberry sauce to the mixture and mix well. Pour the mixture to a freezer proof container and put it to the freezer uncover. Follow as described above (*)....(**) After the second whisk, pour the remaining raspberry sauce to the cream mixture and use a knife gently swirl it into the cream mixture.
Ice cream making without the maker! Enjoy!
Since starting to write this food blog, I have cooked many different types of food. I always know I have a passion in cooking, but I am quite pleased with myself when I put all these food pictures together. Such a variety of colours. I must have fed myself well these few years!
I am lucky I think to have the chance to learnt from many people/ books about cooking.
Really like these two photos...many shades of green..colourful! and the messiness and neatness (both have different kind of energy) in it.
A friend bought me the green tea powder from his recent trip to Tokyo. To repay his kindness, I made this ice cream for him. I think it is one of my best home made ice cream! Strong green tea freshness, just the right amount of sweetness!
The recipe of the ice cream can be found here...
Introducing the Golden Piggy Family!
The first attempt to learn to make these Chinese mooncake inspired pastry. The pastry skin is quite difficult to make. For this trial, instead of using home-made syrup (which I have already prepared few weeks ago. According to the recipe, the freshly made syrup must not be used until it is at least 2 weeks or more old), I read from some online resources, it is OK to substitute the home-made syrup with shop-bought golden syrup. And I also use ready-made sweet adzuki bean paste as the filling for my trial. When I have mastered the whole making process, I will do it properly again with all components home-made!
The recipe book I used for this experiment was a bilingual "Moonlit Mid-Autumn Festival" by Choong Su Yin. I bought the mooncake recipe book many years ago when I was in Malaysia visiting my family. I have read it MANY times, but not gutsy enough to try to make them in the kitchen! I am still trying to understand the original recipe from the book, which didn't tell me how long to bake these piggies in the oven. The temperature of 180'C stated in the book seems way too hot for this sweet pastry dough. Maybe I should not have substituted the home-made syrup with the golden syrup? Maybe the temperature of my oven is too hot? Maybe the ready-made filling is not cooked as per instructed as the recipe?
But I am quite happy with this first attempt. The flavour is not too bad, sweet scented pastry skin. (slightly too golden syrupy!) A few more attempts to learn the process I think. I am excited!
Note: 26.01.2013 - The pastry skin soften after 2 days which make it really close to those shop-bought mooncake's texture. Really quite tasty now!
Spicy Snake Bean With Pork. 乱棍打死猪八戒
This dish has an interesting Chinese name...乱棍打死猪八戒 (many random sticks killed the pig! Literal translation! haha). The pig here refers to one of the characters from the Chinese novel, Journey to the West.
This is also one of the dishes that reminded me of home, Malaysia. A typical Malaysian home-cooked dish using spicy dried shrimps paste (sambal). Spicy and a bit salty, perfect with a bowl of steamy rice.
Ingredients you will need: (enough to serve 2 persons)
First clean the snake bean and discard the top and bottom ends. Cut them into few centimetres long. Set aside.
To make the shrimp paste. Put the garlic, shrimps, shallots, chilli and a tablespoonful of oil in a blender. Blender everything finely and set aside.
In a wok or deep pan, put the shrimps paste and pork with some oil (the pork will produce some oil later once fried in the hot pan), so keep the cooking oil just about 1-2 tablespoonful. Gently cook the paste and the pork in medium heat until fragrant. About 5 mins.
Add the beans and stir fry it for few minutes add some soy sauce and stir-fry everything until slightly dry. Add the water, enough to cover the ingredients and let it cook for few minutes until the beans are just tender and the sauce is slightly thicken.
Serves it hot with steamed rice. Equally nice with brown rice or couscous...mmmmm.....
Orange and Fennel Salad with Almond Flakes and Goat's Cheese
This is a special recipe request from my dear friend, Cecelia from the "Middle Earth" A.K.A Auckland. She "whatsapp" me asking (in the middle of the night (UK time)) me to think of a very simple vegetarian salad recipe for her to prepare for a dinner party she is going..She suggested something with eggs and avocado etc...but I think it would look dull and uninspiring with those ingredients. Furthermore, the avocado will discolour rapidly and by the time she gets to her dinner party the salad would look quite sad!
I am the kind of person, if you presented me with a problem, I have no choice, but to find you a solution! After the conversation with Cecelia, instead of going back to sleep, I kept thinking about what can I teach her to make for her dinner party. Something that is so simple to make, but would make a beautiful impression to her friends at the dinner...
I have a vision of something elegant and refreshing...(I was actually thinking of a dish that represents the personality and character of Cecelia!) She is an elegant lady, and very colourful character..I want to teach her to make something that requires very little cooking skills, something with limited colour palette...and predominately white...
I think an orange and fennel salad would be a beautiful starter for her dinner party!
To make the salad, you will need the followings:
First, prepare the salad dressing. In a bowl, mix the orange juice, olive oil, salt and honey. Whisk thoroughly. Add a pinch of the sliced parsley leaves. Adjust the seasoning to your taste. Set it aside.
Put the orange segments, drained fennel slices, sliced red radishes and parsley in a large salad bowl. Pour the salad dressing and gently coat everything with it.
In a large white serving plate, layout the orange and fennel salad artistically...with all the different colours distributed evenly. Sprinkle generously the almond flakes and goat's cheese. Garnish with the fennel leaves (or parsley leaves).
DONE! So simple! IT is a perfect colour combination for these dull and grey Autumn days. The refreshing taste and colours on the plate will really brightening up your day, I am quite sure about it!
Pineapple Jam Pastry
These Pineapple jam pastries slowing becoming my signature bake! I love how the clove acts like the stalk for the fruity looking pastry. So delicate and elegant.
You will normally find this kind of pastry during Chinese New Year. Many home bakers have their own little secret recipes and different interpretations of the shape of how these pastries should look like. I have made them with apple jam before, so I shaped them round-ish to resemble the apple (Picture below - I think my baking skills have improved a lot! I made those apple jam pastries in 2009!).
For these pineapple jam pastries, I shaped them into a large almond shape but slightly rounded top and bottom part of the pastry before inserting the whole clove to the top end.
They are prefect for afternoon tea, or as little gift for a special occasions.
It is not particular easy to make these pastries. I have made the pastry dough a bit softer by adding more boiling water. This will give a very buttery and delicately lighter pastry skin.
You should prepare the pineapple jam few days ahead before making the pastry. This will allow the jam cool down and slightly thicken to the right consistency to shape them into small balls.
To make the pineapple jam. You will need:
Put all the ingredients in a pot and slowly cook it over high heat for approximately 15 minutes. Reduce the heat and cook further until the pineapple jam is thicken and glossy. Let it cool down completely and shape them into small balls for later.
To make these pastry, you need the following ingredients:
Grease a baking sheet with butter and pre-heat the oven to 150'C.
In a large bowl, mix the flour, salt and sugar together and then rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add in the beaten egg yolk and the hot boiling water. Mix it to form a dough. Add a few handful of additional flour if the dough mixture is too wet. The dough should be quite soft but not sticky. Shape the dough into a ball and wrap it in a piece of cling film and chill it in the fridge for at least 1/2 hours.
Once the pastry is ready, roll it out into a tube. Divide the dough into equal portions. You should be able to make at least 20 pastries (depending of the size you want to make).
Roll all the divided dough portions separately into small balls. Slightly flatten each ball with your palm and then roll it out with the rolling pin. Carefully wrap the pineapple jam ball with the dough. Shape it nicely and stick one clove to the top of the dough. Place it to the greased baking sheet.
Repeat the whole process until you have make use of all the dough. Chill the pastry in the fridge for 20 minutes.
Prepare the glaze by mixing 1 whole egg, 1 egg yolk and 1 tsp water together.
Brush each pastry carefully with the glaze and then chill them in the fridge for further 10 minutes.
Bake them in the oven for 15 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 125'C and bake them for further 15 minutes. Remove the pastries from the oven and let them cool down completely on the wire rack. They should be ready!
But, for the finishing touch, if you think the pastry is a bit too pale. Once the pastries are cool, brush another layer of the glaze and bake them in 150'C oven for few more minutes until they are golden in colour.
ALL Done! Quite a long process, but it is worth it!
If you would like to learn how to make these lovely pastries, let me know! I can provide 1:1 tuition or small group cooking classes arrangement at your connivence. Please get in touch here...
Variation 1: Oven Dried Yellow Plantain with Cinnamon Honey Greek Yoghurt Sauce
This is so easy to make and (I think) quite health too as breakfast or snacks in the afternoon. All you have to do is slice the yellow plantain, diagonally, approximately 5mm thick. Lightly oil a baking sheet and arrange the plantain slices on top and dry it in the pre-heated oven, at around 150'C, until the slices are dehydrated. You may want to stop the drying process just before the the slices are completely dry. This will give you a slightly "meaty" end product.
To make the cinnamon yoghurt sauce, mix a generous couple tablespoonful of TOTAL 0% Greek yoghurt, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder (or more depending on your taste) and 1 tablespoonful honey together. Done!
Variation 2: Deep Fried Yellow Plantain with Honey Greek Yoghurt Sauce
This is very much a typical Malaysian street food - "Goreng Pisang" (Deep Fried Plantain). For the batter, I mixed the following ingredients together:
Heat generous amount of oil in a deep pan or prepare the deep fat frier. Coat well the plantain (large slices) in the batter and deep fry them until golden brown. Drain excess oil with kitchen towel.
Serves it with honey and TOTAL 0% Greek Yoghurt sauce. It is quite a refreshing combination. The yoghurt sauce kind of calm the "heaty-ness" of the deep fried plantain. Yum!
Simple to prepare, but full of flavour...and quite affordable dish to impress your guests! This slow cooked pork will warm your cold winter night...
Pre-heat the oven to 150'C. Heat a oven-proofed casserole pan. Fry lightly a few cloves of garlic, a chunk of ginger (sliced) and one large onion in some olive oil until soften and lightly brown. Add the pork shank and brown the meat all around. Add 500ml chicken stock and a whole bottle of red wine, few cloves and 2 star anise. Bring the liquid to the boil.
Remove the pan from the stove and place it in the pre-heated oven and let it slowly cook for few hours until the meat is falling off the bone. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with chopped spring onion.
Serves it with mashed potatoes...Yum!
Today's menu is French classic - Poulet En Bourride. I have been reading The Cook's Book to learn some basic classic cooking techniques. I think I can cook - experimentally, most of the time. But for classic cooking techniques wise, I think know very little. So my challenge for this coming weeks will all be about classic western cooking techniques!
The weather has been grey and wet in Brighton these days, very depressing...I need some comforting and satisfying food to make myself feel good. In The Cook's Book, there is a chicken bourride recipe. It looks rather nice for this damp days. Rich and thick yellowish aioli flavoured "soup" with juicy chicken pieces. I have made some modifications (well, I shouldn't have done it as my aim is to learn classic cooking skills ....but I think the additional orange juice would lighten the "soup" and give a more refreshing flavour and the orange pepper would add more vibrancy to the colour of the "soup")
For this modified chicken bourride, I used the following ingredients:
First marinate the chicken with salt and pepper. In a deep stewing pot, heat the olive oil and gently seal the meal until lightly brown. Add saffron, cumin, orange zest, pepper and chilli in the chicken. Stir well.
Pre-heat the oven to 190'C
Add the stock and potatoes to the chicken. Cover and bring the stock to the boil and lower the heat to simmer the chicken for 5 minutes. Then transfer the pot to the oven and cook for about 25 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare the aioli with the following ingredients:
In a large bowl, add the egg yolks, mustard and vinegar, whisk to mix everything together. Mix the vegetable and olive oil together in a jar. Slowly whisk in the oil to the egg mixture. Finally, add the garlic, salt and pepper to taste. Set aside for later.
Once the chicken is cooked, remove the chicken and potatoes from the pot (careful with the pipping hot cover! I was careless enough to pick the hot handle up with my bare hand!! I am still in pain!) and set aside to let them cool down slightly.
De-bone the chicken drumsticks and set aside separately. Separate the meat from the rest of the bird and set aside.
Cook the leek in some salted water until soften. Drain and set aside.
In the blender, add the stock (with pepper, chilli, and 4 potatoes) and meat from the drumstick. Blend then into a smooth texture. While blending, add the orange and lemon juice then slowly add the aioli (one tablespoonful at a time) to the mixture until the texture and taste that suit you.
Pour the smooth "soup" back to the chicken and potatoes in the pot. Fold in the leek strips. It is all ready to serve!
I shared this chicken bourride with my friend, Chris, while watching the movie Prometheus! A truly comfort food at these autumnal evening!