Sunday, October 31, 2010

Banana Chiffon Cake


80 g     all-purpose flour
½ tsp   baking powder

4          egg yolks
10 g     sugar
A pinch of salt
40 ml   water
30 ml   vegetable oil
90 g     bananas, mashed (I used about 2 small bananas)

4          egg whites
40 g     sugar
¼ tsp   cream of tartar


1. Beat egg yolks, sugar, and salt until light. Add water, oil, and mashed bananas. Mix well.

2. Add in flour and baking powder. Mix until well incorporated. Set aside.

3. In another clean bowl, whisk the egg whites until foamy then add cream of tartar. Whisk until soft peak then gradually add in sugar. Whisk until stiff peak.

4. Using a rubber spatula, fold in 1/3 of the whites into the banana batter until well incorporated. Gently fold in the rest of the egg whites by half.

5. Pour the batter into the chiffon mold. Tap the mold lightly to get rid of any trapped air bubbles in the batter.

6. Baked in preheated oven at 170 C degree for 45 – 50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.

7. Remove from the oven and invert the mold immediately. Let cool completely before unmolding.

1.   I reduced the sugar from my usual 50g because of the sweetness from the bananas.
2.   Would be best if you use over-riped bananas, the cake will be more flavorful.
3.   Roughly mashed the bananas or add in some small chunks for bananas for texture, if you prefer.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

What We Ate in Tokyo, Japan 2009 (Part 3)

Our ekiben when we took the Shinkansen to see Mount Fuji.

At Asakusa:
There are lots of stores along the street (Nakamise and Shin-Nakamise) from the Kaminarimon to the Sensoji Temple. They are famous for their senbei. The fresh grilled senbei are absolutely delicious. Wish I could try each and every one of them.
Fresh dango too. Another must try! And there are some stores that sells deep-fried manjyuu. We did not try it but there was a lot of people queuing to buy it.

Monday, October 25, 2010

What We Ate in Tokyo, Japan 2009 (Part 2)

More pictures of food! =D

JAL in-flight meal
About 8 hours flight and this is the only meal @_@
I was starved D=

Green Tea Diet Coke - yum. My Sis hates it.
(I am a bias Coke fan)

Banana milk. Love it. Even my Sis that don't like milk AND banana loves it. (She's bias too - she thinks every "Japan-related" food is good)

Kaiseki (traditional Japanese multi-course meal) @ Mikura at Mark City Shibuya

We ordered two set. The largest and the smallest. xD We were very satisfied. It's a splurge though.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

What We Ate in Tokyo, Japan 2009 (Part 1)

Pictures of food we ate (and saw) in Tokyo, Japan (2009). My Sis and I went to Japan for the first time and we were ecstatic! Our mission: EAT!!!

Stopover at Narita, we stayed in Hotel Nikko Narita. Dead tired but we were determined to go out and eat something!!! We took the shuttle bus to the AEON Shopping Center.

Dinner in a food court @ AEON Narita Shopping Center

Curry udon. It was okay.

Spicy tsukemen. We definitely prefer this.

Couldn't resist >.< All hail Kimura-san.


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Oatmeal Cookies

Recipe adapted from Joy of Baking

1 cup (110 grams) walnuts or pecans, toasted and chopped (optional)
     (I used about a handful of almonds)

3/4 cup (170 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
     (used 120g of butter – did not want to open up a new pack of butter >.<)
1 cup (210 grams) packed light brown sugar (used 120g of granulated sugar)

1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

3/4 cup (105 grams) all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda (substitute with baking powder)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (omitted)

3 cups (260 grams) old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup dried cranberries, cherries, or raisins or 1 cup white or dark chocolate chips (optional)
     (omitted – because I forgot >.<)

1.      Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. 
(To toast nuts: Place nuts on a baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned and fragrant. Let cool and then chop into pieces.)
2.      In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the butter and sugar until creamy and smooth (about 2 - 3 minutes). Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat to combine.
3.      In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and ground cinnamon. Add the flour mixture to the creamed mixture and beat until incorporated. Stir in the nuts, oats, and dried cranberries or chocolate chips. 
4.      For large cookies, use 1/4 cup of batter (I like to use an ice cream scoop) and space the cookies about 2 inches (5 cm) apart on the baking sheet. Then wet your hand and flatten the cookies slightly with your fingers so they are about 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) thick.
5.      Bake the cookies for about 12 - 15 minutes or until light golden brown around the edges but still soft and a little wet in the centers.
6.      Remove from oven and let the cookies cool a few minutes on the baking sheet before transferring them to a wire rack to cool.

Makes about 20 - 24 large cookies

The cookies are very delicious and I love the oats’ fragrance and texture. The cookies are more to the chewy side (or maybe it’s because I did not use baking soda? – it is said to make cookies crunchier). Make it thinner and bake longer if you prefer crunchy cookies.

My family love the cookies too. Dad and Mum are not used to chewy cookies – they prefer crunchy ones, so I popped a few into the oven for a few minutes. Despite cutting down the amount of sugar, my Dad and I find it a bit too sweet for our taste.

Shared some with my friends and they loved it. The cookies got better the next day; it was harder/crunchier and even more fragrant.

Easy and simple recipe that yields satisfying results – definitely a keeper.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Mon Chou Chou

Mon Chou Chou’s Dojima Roll is by far the best swiss roll I ever had. But it really depends if you are the type to like lots of filling or not. As you can see, there’s LOTS of cream filling and that is the reason I love it so much. It was #1 in my “Things to Eat in Japan” list (yes, I make list of “Things to Eat” for places I visit).

I did not get the chance to try it during my last visit to Tokyo mainly because there was always a long queue and when there was no queue, it was because they sold out. It was very very very popular that time. But fortunately, when I went to Japan this summer, the hype about Dojima Rolls seemed to have tone down a bit – there were more competitors and during that time, the Japanese were into Baumkuchens.

I wanted to get the original Dojima Roll but I end up buying Dojima Cinderella Roll – can’t resist the fruits. The queue was not too bad (sarcasm)…considering it was early in the morning!

Tried to buy it twice but by evening, all the Dojima Rolls are sold out except for the chocolate ones. >.<
So on my final day in Japan (Osaka), I decided to wait for the store to open. And surprise surprise…I wasn’t the only desperate one….

When I had my first bite…it was heavenly. The cream is just perfect – not too sweet, fluffy, soft, and not overly rich (I don’t get cloyed even after consuming nearly half of the roll...hahaha). The fruits’ tanginess, sweetness, and sourness give it a nice balance and burst of flavors. The sponge is soft, moist, and light. It was just perfect.
Took pictures of every angle. I was obsessed with it.
The pictures does not do its taste justice!

I somehow manage to resist the temptation to finish the whole thing off (should have bought more) and bring it back to Mum. It survived the flight but was a little mangled. Mum ate the rest and could not stop raving about it every time someone mentioned “swiss roll”.
If you like lots of cream, do try the Dojima Rolls. You won't regret it. =P

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Japanese-Style Sweet Bun Dough

Sambla Hae Bee Buns - love the contrast of spicy and slight sweet taste
Recipe from Corner Cafe

Japanese-Style Sweet Bun Dough 湯種甜麵糰
Makes 16 buns

[Ingredients]375g bread flour
100g plain flour
35g milk powder
75g caster sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 sachet (7g or 2 1/2 tsp) instant dry yeast
1 egg, lightly beaten
150ml (approx.) lukewarm water, adjust as necessary
40g butter, cubed

Water-Roux Paste (湯種) *:

25g (just under 2 tbsp) bread flour
125ml (1/2 cup) water

Please visit Corner Cafe's post for the methods.

After 1 hour

Hot Dog Buns and Dried Shrimp Sambal (Sambal Hae Bee) Buns

Mini plain buns

So soft and fluffy...mmm mmm

The buns were great! They are soft and fluffy. In my opinion, these are easier to make because there are less steps and shorter proofing time.  However, the dough is more sticky compared to the "Sponge & Dough Method". Not sure if it is suppose to be that way. I added a little flour during the kneading process.

I stopped kneading after 30 minutes (had to rush of somewhere >.<) - by that time, the dough was smooth and able to stretch but it was not the thin thin almost see through membrane stage that I was hoping for D=

My family loved it. But my Sis said she prefer the "Sponge & Dough Method" buns because she thinks they are more fluffy and aromatic - she likes the hint of yeasty taste, which probably resulted from long proofing.
I also think that the buns are less fluffy - slightly more compact compared to the "Sponge & Dough Method" and they did not puffed up as much when baked.

But overall, I am glad that I tried out the recipe again and it was a success (my bread making skill is improving...or at least I hope so). I can see why so many bloggers love this method. The buns are soft and remained so for the next day. For my next bread-making, I will try to make the scalded dough method.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Cream Cheese Chiffon Cake

I love baking chiffon cakes, mainly because everyone in my family enjoys eating it.

My Dad only eats chiffon cakes and sponge cakes (usually the type we consider “traditional” cake). My Sis is a picky eater and she watches what she eats but whenever I bake chiffon cakes, she is sure to eat them. My nephews love chiffon cakes too – one of them gobbled up almost half of the cake. O.O
As for Mum, she loves and eat everything I baked (she’s my tester – though I think she is too nice to say anything bad about my baking)

All of us love the soft fluffiness of the cake. My Sis and Dad says that chiffon cakes are light and they like the “airiness” of the cake, thus they won’t feel “jelak” (cloy) after eating more than a slice.

I had been baking pandan chiffon cake for the past few weeks but since I have some cream cheese left, I decided to try the "Cream Cheese Chiffon Cake" that I copied from Beachloverkitchen long ago.'

Saturday, October 2, 2010

I Threw My Coins

...into the Trevi Fountain and wished I was in Rome. Why? Because this Trevi Fountain is the replica in Las Vegas. Oh, how I wish I get to visit Rome one day and see the real Trevi Fountain.

But anyways, here's another post on Las Vegas. What I ate and things to do when  visiting Las Vegas.

Nathan's Famous Frankfurter

It was okay. Not too great, not too bad - average.