Curry Puffs

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Curry Puff, a snack filled with curried mixture of meat, onion, and potato, is commonly found in Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. Alternatively puff pastry (homemade or readymade) can be used. To fry or to bake them is not the question, because they both taste very good.

DoughCurry Filling
  • 270 g German #550 flour
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Baking soda
  • 60 g Ghee
  • 1 Egg, lightly beaten
  • 5-6 tbsp Water
  • 250 g Minced meat (beef or chicken)
  • 100 g Potatoes, finely diced
  • 100 g Sweet bell pepper, finely diced
  • 1 Onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp Curry powder
  • 1tbsp Chilli powder
  • 1/2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp Water
  • 1 tbsp Cooking oil
  • 240 ml Water
  • 2/3 tbsp Sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a bowl, combine curry powder, chilli powder and Worcestershire sauce. Stir in 2 tablespoons of water to make a thick paste. Heat oil on high and stir fry onions and curry paste for 2 minutes. Add in minced meat, diced potatoes and bell peppers. Cook until the meat has turned browned. Pour in water and let simmer on slow-heat for approximately 20 minutes until potatoes are soft. Stir in sugar, and season the mixture with salt and pepper. Continue to cook until it is about dry. Transfer to a bowl and leave aside to cool.

  2. To make dough, sift together the flour, salt and baking soda in a mixing bowl. Rub ghee into the flour mixture until it resembles breadcrumbs. Add water gradually and press into a ball. Knead the dough by pushing away, using the heel of your hand until smooth. Wrap in plastic film and let it rest for half an hour.

  3. On a lightly floured work surface roll out the dough thinly. Cut into circles, 8 cm in diameter. Flatten each round with a rolling pin, fill with a tablespoonful of the filling. Fold pastry over to make a half circle and crimp at edges. Alternatively fill one pastry circle with 2 tablespoons of filling, top with another circle, then seal and crimp at edges. Deep fry in hot oil until golden. If you prefer them baked, brush the tops of each curry puff with the egg wash and bake in the 180C/350F hot oven for 25 minutes.

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Zimtsterne German Cinnamon Stars

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Cinnamon stars are popular classic German Christmas cookies. They are rolled and cut into star the shape of star. Light and crisp, they have a fabulous balance of nuts and cinnamon. So, don't miss the chance to relish these cookies and try baking it yourself. I wish you a warm and happy Holiday!

  • 3 Egg whites, medium
  • 250 g Confectioners' sugar plus more for rolling
  • 1 package / 8 g Vanilla sugar
  • 380 g Almonds, finely ground
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon, ground
  • 3 drop Almond extract
  1. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Sift the confectioners' sugar. Blend together the ground hazelnuts and cinnamon. Whip the egg whites in a large bowl with an electric mixer on high speed until they hold soft peaks, about 1 minute. Gradually add the confectioners' sugar while whipping, until the whites are stiff and glossy. Reserve 3 tablespoons of this meringue for topping the cookies. Fold the nut mixture into the remaining meringue to make a stiff dough. Cover the dough and let it rest in the fridge for about an hour.
  2. Lay a sheet of parchment paper on the work surface and lightly dust with confectioners' sugar. Turn the dough out onto the dusted paper, and then top with a piece of cling film. Roll the dough until it is about 1/4 inch thick. Remove the cling film.
  3. Using a star form cookie cutter, cut out stars in the dough. To avoid the dough sticking to the form run the cookie cutter under cold water and then shake off any excess water. Transfer the cinnamon stars to the prepared tray using a metal spatula. Frost each cookie with the reserved meringue. If desired, decorate the cookies with almonds. Leave the cookies to dry out overnight.
  4. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 150C/300F and bake for about 10 minutes. Try to remove the cookies before the icing turns brown, although a little brown tint can look nice. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 weeks.
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Sunday, December 21, 2008

Nougat is a type of confection made from sugar, honey, and nuts. It is popular throughout Europe. The word “nougat” is French, and it comes from the Latin nux, for “nut.” The two primary variations of nougat are white nougat and brown nougat. White nougat is made with egg whites, so it is lighter, softer, and chewier in texture. Brown nougat is made with caramelized sugar, and tends to be harder and darker in color.

  • 125 ml Whipping cream
  • 250 g Semi-sweet couverture
  • 150 g Nut nougat
  • 30 g Butter
  • 30 g Peanut butter
  • 30 g Almonds, chopped (or hazelnuts)
  1. >Bring the whipping cream in a small pot to a boil over low heat. Chop the couverture into the smaller chunks and stir into the whipping cream until melted. Turn off the heat and transfer the mixture in a mixing bowl. Add in nut nougat, butter and peanut butter.

  2. Set it in a bowl of cold water and whip the mixture until fluffy and cold. Scrape the mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a star tip and pipe into the paper praline forms. Sprinkle the tops with preferred nuts. Cool the praline until set.

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Saltless Tuscan Bread / Pane Toscano

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Saltless, yet it is never bland! This Tuscan bread is more substantial than the French bread, and although it hasn't the airy lightness of a French baguette, it is not heavy like some German bread either. Fresh tomatoes and basil layered on a large slice of Tuscan loaf would make a perfect snack or like what I did, spread the bread with cheese Toscana
One explanation of the saltless bread is that the Tuscans, well known for being tightfisted couldn't bear to pay the government salt tax and chose instead to make bread without it. Perhaps, but gastronomes point out that the Tuscan bread is perfectly suited to their cuisine, which is full of strong flavors.

  • 110 g Water at 20C/68F
  • 1 package / 7 g Instant dry yeast
  • 30 g Olive oil
  1. Pour the boiling water over the flour in a bowl. Stir until you have a smooth thick paste. Cool and and let rest covered with a plastic wrap overnight in the fridge. The next day, take the dough out of the fridge and let rest for an hour to bring the paste to room temperature.
  2. Place the paste and the rest of the ingredients in the bowl of your stand mixer and stir on low speed until combined. Increase the speed to medium and continue mixing until the dough is smooth and leave from sides of mixing bowl. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover and let rise until double in bulk, about one hour. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and divide it in half. Round each dough up and let the dough balls rest, covered, for 15-20 minutes.
  3. After resting, shape the dough into batards. Proof the shaped batards, covered,on a piece of parchment paper or in moulds or pans for about one hour. Meanwhile, preheat the oven and the bricks to 220C/450F. Once the dough has doubled in size, sift flour on the surface of the batards to create a rustic appearance. Score the bread and carefully transfer them on the bricks in the oven. Bake the bread for 50 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

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Deep-fried Milk

Saturday, December 13, 2008 | © 2011 | | © 2011 |

This sweet treat with coconut aroma has a soft pudding-like center and crunchy shell.

Milk CustardCoating
  • 1 cup German #405 flour
  • 4 tbsp Cornstarch
  • 1 tsp Baking powder
  • 2 tsp Lemon juice
  • 4 tbsp Salad oil
  • Some water
  1. Combine together 250ml milk, coconut milk, sweetened condensed milk and salt in a pot. Set the pot over medium low heat. Don’t bring it to a boil. Dissolve the cornstarch in 50 ml of milk and slowly stir it into heated milk until the mixture is thick and smooth. Spread evenly in a rectangle dish and smooth the surface. Refrigerate until firm.
  2. To prepare the coating by mixing flour, cornstarch and baking powder in a bowl. Add in lemon juice, oil and enough water to make a thick mixture. Cut the milk custard into the smaller slices, using wet knife. Heat some oil to 175C/350F. Coat the custard with the prepared mixture and fry until light brown and crunchy. Drain on paper towels. Serve hot with sweetened condensed milk. | © 2011 | | © 2011 |
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Japanese Cheesecake

Friday, November 28, 2008 | © 2008 | | © 2008 | | © 2008 |

Japanese Cheesecake, unlike rich, dense American cheesecake, is a light and fluffy cake.

  • 350 g Cream cheese (at room temperature)
  • 120 ml Milk
  • 5 Egg yolks
  • 150 g Sugar
  • 50 g Cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp Lemon juice
  • 5 Egg whites
  • 1/2 tsp Lemon juice (or white vinegar)
  • 2 tbsp Apricot jam
  • 1/2 tbsp Water
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 175C/350F. Line a 26cm cake tin with greaseproof paper both bottom and the sides. If you use a spring form with a removable bottom, then you must use tin-foil to the cake tin completely to avoid the water penetrate right through to the cake.

  2. Soften the cream cheese with milk in a bowl. Add half of the caster sugar, egg yolks, cornstarch, lemon juice and combine together.
  3. Place the egg whites and lemon juice or white vinegar in a large bowl, whisking them until foamy and then keep whisking, adding the remaining sugar in 3 batches until the mixture stands in stiff peaks.

  4. Fold one third of the egg white mixture into the cream cheese mixture as gently as possible, then fold in the remaining egg white mixture gently but thoroughly. Transfer the mixture to the prepared tin and level the surface. Put the tin into a larger roasting tin and create a bain-marie by pouring boiling water in the roasting tin. Bake on the lower shelf in the oven for 60-70 minutes. Leave in the tin until cool enough to handle.
  5. Put the jam in a sauce pan on a low heat with the water and warm up until it's melted. If necessary, thicken this glaze by simmering a bit and then spread the glaze on top of the cake. If the surface of the cake becomes too dark while baking, cover with a piece of tin foil. Don't remove the cake from the tin until it's completely cool. | © 2013 | | © 2013 | | © 2013 |

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Banana Chocolate Mini Guglhupf

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

  • 120 g Butter, at room temperature
  • 80 g Sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • 2 Ripe Banana, mashed
  • 200 g All-purpose flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp Baking powder
  • 50 g Dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • Lemon icing, optional
  • Sprinkles, optional
  1. Beat butter and sugar until light and creamy. Add in egg and beat well. Add in mashed banana.
  2. Mix flour, salt, and baking powder in a bowl and sift into the banana mixture with chopped chocolate.
  3. Divide the mixture into 6 mini guglhupf and bake in a preheated 180C/350F oven for about 30-40 minutes. Cool completely and glaze with lemon icing if preferred.

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Sandwiched Zucchini In Szechuan Fish Fragrant Sauce 四川鱼香西葫芦

Friday, November 21, 2008

  • 100 g Ground pork (or beef, or a combination)
  • 250 g Zucchini
  • 2 Eggs
  • 4 tbsp Cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 1 tbsp Chopped spring onion
  • 1/2 tsp Minced ginger
  • Pinch of white pepper powder
  • 1 tsp Light soya sauce
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 Egg yolk
  • 1 tsp Cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp Chopped spring onion
  • 2 tsp Minced ginger
  • 1 tsp Minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp Spicy bean paste
  • 1 tsp Cornstarch
  • 3 tbsp Water
  • 1 tbsp Light soya sauce
  • 1 tbsp Sugar
  • 1 tsp Sesame oil
  • 1 tsp Jiafan rice wine
  1. Peel and clean the zucchini. Cut them into 2-2.5 cm chunks. Slice open each chunk to become a clip. Remember not to cut it through. Soak them in a pot of salted water.
  2. Mix the ground meat and the marinade. Set aside. Dry up the zucchini clips with a towel and stuff with some prepared ground meat. Heat up a wok with oil to 165C/325F. Mix together 2 eggs and cornstarch in a bowl. Dip the prepared zucchini into the batter and deep-fry until golden brown. Drain.
  3. Heat up 2 tablespoons of oil in another pan and stir in ginger, onion, garlic and spicy bean paste until fragrant. Combine together the ingredients for the sauce and pour in. Return the fried zucchini to the pan and stir lightly until they are fully coated with the sauce. Dish off and serve.

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Mohnschnecken / Poppy Seed Snail

Monday, November 17, 2008

Poppy seeds, rich in fat and proteins, and having a distinctive aroma, are a classic addition to bread, cookies, and cakes. This sweet roll is very popular in Germany.

  • 410 g All-purpose flour
  • 30 g Milk powder
  • 42 g Sugar
  • 3/4 tsp Salt
  • 9 g Active dry yeast
  • 1 Egg
  • 127 ml Lukewarm water
  • 130 g Water Roux Starter-Tangzhong
  • 30 g Butter
  • 500 ml Milk
  • 250 g Poppy, ground
  • 1 package / 37 g Vanilla pudding (or 3 tbsp Cornstarch+1 tsp Vanilla extract)
  • 4-6 tbsp Honey
  • 2 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1 Lemon peel, grated
  • 80 g Almond, chopped or sliced
  • 70 g Icing sugar
  • 15 ml Lemon juice
  • 16 Candied cherries
  1. Place all the ingredients for the dough, except butter, in a mixing bowl fixed with a dough hook and beat at slow speed for 1 minute. Switch to the medium speed, and continue to beat for 3 minutes until a dough forms. Cut in butter gradually and mix for approx. 5 minutes until gluten is fully developed, i. e. elastic, smooth, non-sticky and leaves from sides of mixing bowl. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl and let rise until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
  2. While dough is rising, prepare filling. Cook 400ml milk with ground poppy in a pot for 3 minutes over the medium heat. Combine together the pudding powder, 100 ml milk, honey, cinnamon and grated lemon peel and add in the poppy-milk mixture. Boil and stir in sliced almond. Blend thoroughly. Cool down and ready to use.
  3. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide it into half, each about 430 grams. Press and roll each part into a 25cmx30cm rectangle.
  4. Spread half of the poppy filling and tightly roll up. With a serrated knife, cut the roll into 8 sections. Repeat with another portion of dough. Place them in a baking tray lined with parchment paper and let rise for another hour until doubled in volume. After proving, brush them with egg wash. Garnish with a candied cherry in the middle and bake in a preheated 180C/350F oven for 15 minutes. Sift the icing sugar into lemon juice to combine and brush over top of bread rolls.
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Panettone (pa-ne-to-ne)

Friday, November 14, 2008

Panettone is a typical bread of Milan, usually prepared and enjoyed for Christmas and New Year around Italy, and one of the symbols of the city. This cake-like bread is typically baked into a tall, cylindrical shape (empty fruit cans work great as baking pans).

  • 1 package / 7 g Dry yeast
  • 60 ml Water at 43C/110F
  • 60 g German #550 flour
  • 100 g Butter, room temperature
  • 2 Eggs
  • 4 Egg yolks
  • 150 g Sugar
  1. To make the sponge, dissolve the yeast in 60 ml warm water in a bowl. Add 60 flour and stir to make a very loose dough. Cover the bowl with a plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for at least 6 hours, or overnight.
  2. In the bowl of your mixer, combine the butter, eggs, yolks, sugar, milk, and vanilla seeds. Add in the starter dough. Gradually add the flour, beat on low speed just until dough begins to leave the sides of the bowl and pull together. Increase speed to medium, and beat until the dough becomes smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes.
  3. Place the dough in a greased bowl and turn it once to coat both sides. Cover bowl of dough with plastic wrap, and let rise for 5 hours in a warm place until doubled in size. With your hands, flatten the dough on a lightly floured surface into a rectangle. Evenly distribute the lemon zest, raisins, apricots, and almond over the dough. Fold the dough to seal the fruit and knead to distribute the fruit throughout the dough.
  4. Line a 8-inch mousse ring with parchment paper that has been well buttered on both sides and set it on a baking tray. Place the dough in the mold, cover with a towel, and let rise for 45 minutes in a warm place. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F.
  5. Make a cross on the top of the bread with a sharp knife and insert a cube of butter. Bake the bread on the middle rack of the oven for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to 180C/350F. Continue to bake for 30-35 minutes until the surface is golden and crispy. Place the bread on a rack to cool for 30 minutes before removing it from the mold. Dust the bread with icing sugar if desired. Be sure the bread has cooled completely before wrapping for storage.

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Kasutera Japanese Sponge Cake

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Kasutera is a traditional Japanese sponge cake, usually flavored with honey. There are now many kinds of kasutera, made with various ingredients. For example, there are kasuteras made with powdered green tea, cocoa, and also brown sugar.

  • 60 g German #550 flour
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 7 Eggs
  • 1/4 cup Honey
  • 220 g Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1/5 tsp Lemon juice
  1. Preheat the oven to 170C/340F. Line two 28x10cm loaf pans with parchment paper. Sift the flour and salt and set aside.
  2. Place the egg yolks, honey, 200 grams of sugar and vanilla in a bowl. Set the bowl over a pot of simmering water and beat at high speed until the mixture is thick and pale. Fold in the sifted flour in two additions.
  3. Beat egg whites electric mixer on a low speed one minute, and then add in lemon juice. Increase speed to medium-high and continue to beat until foamy. Sprinkle in 20 grams of sugar and beat until stiff but not dry. With a rubber spatula, fold the egg whites in thirds. Pour batter into two prepared pans. Bake the cake in the center of hot oven for 35-45 minutes.

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Choco-Matcha Swirl Cheesecake

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Not really satisfied with the result as the surface cracked although the bain-marie was applied, and the chocolate batter was not enough. Nevertheless, it tastes super!

Marzipan Biscuit CrustCheese Filling
  • 160 g All-purpose flour
  • 40 g Roasted okara, ground (or use almond meal instead)
  • 100 g Marzipan paste
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 package / 8 g Vanilla sugar
  • 100 g Butter
  • 500 g Cream cheese
  • 125 g 3.5% Yogurt
  • 120 g Sugar
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 200 ml Heavy cream
  • 30 g Milk chocolate
  • 15 g Matcha tea powder
  • 4 tbsp Hot water
  1. Combine together all the ingredients for the crust. Chill for 30 minutes. Take out the dough from the fridge and press into the bottom and sides of a 26-cm springform pan lined with baking paper. Return it to the fridge and let rest for another 30 minutes.
  2. Combine together matcha tea powder and hot water in a bowl. Melt chocolate over a hot-water bath. Preheat the oven to 175C/350F. Place cream cheese, yogurt, and two thirds of sugar in a bowl set over a hot water bath. Stir until sugar dissolved and all the ingredients are well-blended. Add in egg yolks, vanilla extract and heavy cream. Mix well. Whip the egg whites and the rest of sugar until soft peak forms. Fold into the cheese mixture. Combine one fourth of the plain cheese mixture with melted chocolate, and another one fourth with matcha. So now you have 2 portions of plain cheese mixture, one chocolate-flavoured cheese, and one matcha-flavoured cheese mixture.
  3. Pour plain, chocolate and matcha cheese batters alternatively over the center of the biscuit crust in the pan. With a tip of toothpick you slide across the surface to create stripes or swirl the whole mixture with a table knife until it resembles a marbled effect.
  4. Pour the cake pan on a large baking tray and pour some hot tap water to half way up the outside of the tin to form a bain-marie. Bake for 40 minutes. Turn the oven down to 150C and bake for a further 30 minutes. Turn the oven off and leave the cake in for 30 minutes. Remove the cake from the oven and cool completely. Chill the cake overnight. 

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Citron-glazed Carrot Cookies

Friday, October 31, 2008

  • 210 g All-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp Baking powder
  • 80 g Carrot, grated
  • 50 g Walnut, chopped
  • 110 g Margarine, softened
  • 100 g Sugar
  • 1 tsp Sugar syrup
  • 1 Egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tbsp Orange juice
  • 1 tsp Orange zest
  • 50 g Coconut shreds
  • 100 g Citron glaze
  1. In a large bowl, beat sugar and margarine with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add in sugar syrup and continue beating until fluffy. Add egg to sugar mixture and stir in orange juice and zest.
  2. Sift in flour and baking soda gradually and mix well. Blend in grated carrots, coconut shreds and chopped walnuts. Mix until the dough just combined. Preheat oven to 180C/350F.
  3. Shape 1 generous teaspoon dough into a 3cm ball and place on the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough, spacing rounds about 2 inches apart. Bake in the preheated oven for about 12-15 minutes until lightly browned. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Glaze.

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Ants Climbing A Tree / Ma Yi Shang Shu

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Ants Climbing a Tree /蚂蚁上树 is a classic Szechuan dish in Chinese cuisine. It is so called because the bits of ground meat clinging to the noodles evoke an image of ants walking on twigs. This dish is made from mung bean noodles, also know as Chinese glass vermicelli. These thin noodles become soft and translucent after soaking in water.

  • 120 g Glass vermicelli
  • 5 Dried mushrooms
  • 2 slice Ginger root
  • 1 Small red chilli pepper
  • 3 tbsp Cooking oil
  • 1 tsp Chilli sauce
  • 2 stalk Spring onions
  • 225 g Ground pork
  • 1 tbsp Light soy sauce
  • 2 tsp Granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp Jiafan rice wine (or sherry )
  • 1 tsp Sesame oil
  • Pinch of cornstarch
  1. Add the marinade ingredients to the ground pork, adding the cornstarch last. Set aside for 15 minutes. Soak the glass vermicelli in hot water until soft, about 5 minutes. Drain well. Soften the dried mushrooms in hot water. Reserve ¼ cup of the soaking liquid Thinly slice the mushrooms. Cut chilli in half lengthwise, remove the seeds, and chop coarsely. Mince the ginger and cut the green onion diagonally into inch pieces.

  2. Heat a frying pan over medium-high to high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of oil to the heated wok. Stir in the marinated pork until the pork has browned and remove. Add 1 tablespoon oil to the pan. Stir in the ginger and chilli until aromatic. Add the dried mushrooms. Stir-fry briefly, then add in the chilli sauce and the vermicelli. Pour in the reserved soaking liquid and return the ground pork to the pan. Add in the spring onions and stir until noodles and sauce are well blended, and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Garnish with some chopped spring onions and serve.

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