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White Leaven Bread

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The cultured yeast together with lactic bacteria create a distinctive, sour taste to the crumb. The recipe adapted from 'The Handmade Loaf by Dan Lepard'. I used rye and white leavens to make this bread while the original one used just white leaven.

  • 100 g White leaven
  • 100 g Rye leaven
  • 325 ml Cold water at 16C/60F
  • 500 g German #550 flour
  • 1/2 tbsp Fine sea salt
  • Flour for dusting
  1. In a large bowl, whisk the rye, white leavens with the water. Add the flour and salt, and stir together with your hands until you have a soft, sticky mass. The dough temperature should be about 20C/68F. Cover the bowl and leave for 10 minutes.
  2. Knead the dough on a lightly oiled work-surface for 10-15 seconds. Shape the dough into a ball. Grease the bowl lightly with oil and place in the dough ball. Cover and leave for 10 minutes. Knead the dough again for 10-15 seconds, shape into a ball, and then place the dough back in the bowl. Cover and leave for 30 minutes.
  3. Knead the dough one more time, shape into a ball and then place the dough back in the ball. Cover and leave for 1 hour. Repeat one more time. Knead the dough into a ball and leave for 2 hours covered in the bowl.
  4. Divide the dough into two pieces, each roughly 500 grams. Shape each piece into a ball, cover and leave for 15 minutes. Dust two linen-lined baskets or two bowls lined with kitchen towels. Shape the dough once more into balls and the place each seam side up in the prepared baskets or bowls. Cover and leave at the room temperature until almost doubled in height, about 4 hours.
  5. Preheat the oven to 220C/425F. Dust a baking tray with semolina. Upturn the loaves onto the tray and slash the top of the dough and bake for 50-70 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

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Honey Rose Tea

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The tea has a natural rosy taste and aroma, as I infuse the Earl-Grey with real dried rose buds, which makes the tea very refreshing and enjoyable. According to the TCM, rosebuds help aiding circulation and reducing tension.

  • 1 bag Earl Grey tea
  • 3-5 g Rose petal
  • Some honey
  1. Place tea bag and rose petals in a tea pot. Pour in some boiled water and let steep for 3-5 minutes. Sweeten the tea with some honey.

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Grissini-Rosemary Pepper Breadsticks

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Those pencil-sized breadsticks, known as "Grissini" in Italy, are dried, crispy and easy to make!

  • 160 ml Milk
  • 1/2 tbsp Dried chives
  • 1/2 tsp Dried rosemary
  • 3/4 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Black pepper powder
  • 2 tsp Baking powder
  • 90 g Whole wheat flour
  • 90 g German #550 flour
  1. Combine milk, chives, rosemary, salt, pepper and baking powder in large bowl. Mix well. Stir in flours, mix until blended. Turn onto floured surface and knead dough about 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic, adding more flour if dough is sticky. Cover and let stand 30 minutes at room temperature.
  2. Preheat oven to 190C/375F. Grease baking sheet. Divide dough into 12 balls, about 31 grams each. Roll each ball into long thin rope. place on prepared baking sheet. Lightly brush bread-sticks with salad oil. Bake about 12 minutes or until bottoms are golden brown. Turn bread-sticks over and bake about 10 minutes more or until golden brown.

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Kung Pao Prawns

Saturday, February 21, 2009

A seafood version of traditional "Kung Pao" chicken. Instead of chicken, I used shelled prawns as the primary ingredient. The classic "kung Pao" dish is named after a late Qing Dynasty official(Ding Baozhen), whose title was "Kung Pao/宮保" (palatial guardian in English).

  • 250 g Shelled prawns
  • Frying oil
  • 3-4 10 g Dried red chillies
  • 1/2 tbsp Szechuan red peppercorns
  • 3-4 slice Ginger root
  • 1 stalk Spring onion, cut into chunks
  • 1/4 cup Peanuts or cashew nuts
  • 1 tsp Jiafan rice wine
  • 1/3 tsp Salt
  • 1/3 Egg white
  • 1/2 tbsp Cornstarch
  • 1/2 tbsp Dark soya sauce
  • 1 tsp Jiafan rice wine
  • 1/2 tsp Mined garlic
  • 1/2 tsp Sesame oilangiesrecipes
  • 1/3 tsp Sugar
  • 1 tsp Rice vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tbsp Cornstarch
  • 1/2 tbsp Water
  1. Rinse the shelled shrimps and wipe dry. Mix with marinade and set aside for 30 minutes. In a small bowl, place all the ingredients for the sauce and mix well.
  2. Heat some oil in wok to 205C/400F. Add marinated shrimps and cook until the colour has turned to pink. Pour off all but one tablespoon of the oil and reheat the wok.

  3. Stir in chillies, peppercorns and spring onion chunks until fragrant. Return the shrimps to the wok. Stir briefly and add in sauce mixture. Cook until the sauce has thickened. Sprinkle the nuts over and toss briefly. Transfer them to a serving dish.
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Hokkaido Milky Loaf & Buns

Thursday, February 19, 2009

  • 5 g Salt
  • 1 Egg
  • 30 g Milk
  • 50 g Creme fraiche/Fresh cream
  • 30 g Soft butter, diced
  1. Place all other ingredients, except butter, in the mixing bowl with a dough hook and stir over the low speed until the ingredients incorporate. Adjust speed to medium and continue to beat. When a dough ball starts to form, cut in the butter. Low down the speed to knead until the butter has blended into the dough. Increase the speed to medium again and knead until the dough has become very smooth and elastic.

  2. Shape the dough into a ball and transfer into a large greased mixing bowl. Roll it around so the dough gets coated with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or damp cloth. Let rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. Punch down the dough to release the gas produced during the proof and divide it into 3 even portions, each about 240 grams. Round up and let rest for 15 minutes.
  3. Press out the gas of each dough and roll out into an oval shape. Fold it into thirds, overlapping them in the center, press the dough down firmly. Turn over and roll out into a 30-cm long strip. Turn over and roll up each to a column shape. Or you can divide the dough into 12 portions and shape each into a ball. Place them in a 30x11x8-cm loaf pan. Let the dough rise up to 2/3 full. Lightly brush with egg wash and bake in a preheated 170C/340F oven for 30-35 minutes.

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Seaweed Soda Crackers

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

  • 100 g German #405 flour
  • 1/5 tsp Baking soda
  • 20 g Icing sugar
  • 1/3 tsp Salt
  • 35 g Shortening
  • 1 Egg white
  • 3 g Dried seaweed, ripped off
  1. Preheat the oven to 175C/350F. Mix the flour, baking soda, icing sugar and salt together in a mixing bowl. Rub shortening into dry ingredients until mixture looks like loose crumbs. Add in egg white and combine briefly. Add in the dried seaweed and blend all the ingredients together with your hand.

  2. Place the dough between two sheets of plastic film, and roll it out into a rectangle, about 2mm thick. Divide it into 24 equal rectangles and prick the tops with a fork. Then use the back of a knife to make two vertical marks on the surface. Lightly brush them with egg white and then bake in the center of hot oven for 25 minutes.

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Herb Cheese Cookie Balls

Sunday, February 15, 2009

This is a wonderful mix of herbs, garlic and grating cheese formed into a ball (and pressed down with a fork if desired). You can't go wrong with this recipe.

  • 115 g German #405 flour
  • 100 g Unsalted butter, chilled
  • 70 g Cheddar, grated
  • 60 g Parmigiano reggiano, grated
  • 1 tbsp Garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Dried parsley (curly or flat)
  • 1 tsp Dried marjoram
  • 1 tsp Dried basil
  • 1/5 tsp Salt
  1. Line a baking tray with paper. Preheat the oven to 175C/350F. Sift the flour into a medium bowl. Cut in the chilled butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

  2. Add in the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Shape dough into balls using 1 teaspoonful for each. Makes approximately 27 balls. Alternatively use a fork to press the cheese balls create a pretty cross-hatching pattern on the cookies. Place them in the lined baking tray and bake in the hot oven for 15 minutes until lightly golden. Remove and cool on a rack.

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Honey Cookies

Saturday, February 14, 2009

  • 80 g Unsalted butter
  • 30 g Caster sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 Egg yolk
  • 55 g Honey
  • 190 g German #405 flour
  1. Preheat the oven to 175C/350F. Line the baking tray with parchment paper. Stir the egg and egg yolk together in a bowl. Soften the butter at the room temperature. Beat butter, sugar and honey in the mixing bowl on medium speed, scraping bowl constantly, until smooth. Add in egg mixture in 2 additions, beating well after each addition.
  2. Sift in the flour and baking soda. Mix until just combined. Spoon the mixture into the piping bag fitted with a plain round nozzle and pipe 3cm onto lined tray. Bake on the upper shelf of the hot oven for 18 minutes, until golden. Transfer the cookies on a rack to cool. Store in an airtight container for a week or so.

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Tangyuan Yuanxiao Glutinous Rice Balls

Tuesday, February 10, 2009
We call these balls tangyuan or yuanxiao, which made of glutinous rice flour and can be either filled or unfilled with sweet, or savoury stuffing. Sweet fillings are basically made of sugar, nuts, seeds, or beans while minced meat and vegetables are often used the savoury filling. As a symbol of family unity and harmony in Chinese culture, tang yuan is traditionally served around Dong Zhi /winter solstice, about the time when families get together for the holidays.

The way to make tangyuan varies between northern and southern China. The usual method followed in the south is to shape the dough first into small portions, fill each with the preferred filling, and then roll into rounds. In North China, the fillings are pressed into rounds, and roll in a bowl of dry glutinous rice flour.

  • 160 g Instant black sesame powder
  • 50 g Caster sugar
  • 60 g Peanut butter
  • Some water
  1. In a bowl, stir the instant sesame powder with the peanut butter and some water to make a thick paste. Combine two kinds of rice flour together in a bowl. Make a well in the centre, add water gradually and mix until you have a soft dough. Divide dough into 4 equal portions, each about 110 grams.
  2. Add matcha tea powder to one portion and cacao powder to another. Leave two portions uncoloured. Roll each portion out into a long strip to the same length. Place one white strip on the top of the green tea one, and the other atop the cacao strip. Slice each into two.
  3. Stack layers, alternating white, green and cacao colours. Slice the stack into the small even portions, each about 16-18 grams. Lightly flatten each piece and place 8-10 grams of filling in the center. Seal and roll it into the ball.
  4. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Gently drop the glutinous rice balls into the pot of boiling water and remove once they float to the top. Tangyuan can be served in either a very simple sugar wateror a bowl of red bean soup.
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Chicken Sweetcorn Soup

Saturday, February 07, 2009

A very healthy, popular Chinese soup. Easy to prepare and tastes fantastic!

  • 100 g Chicken breast
  • 3 cup Water
  • 1 tsp Chicken bouillon
  • 1 tsp Ginger root
  • 120 g Sweetcorns, canned
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 tsp White pepper powder
  • 1 tbsp Cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp Water
  • 1 Egg
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • Pinch of white pepper powder
  • 1/2 tbsp Cornstarch
  • 1/2 tbsp Water
  • 1 tsp Oil, cooked
  1. Rinse the chicken breast well with cold water and pat it dry with paper towel. Finely chop chicken breast and place them in a bowl. Add in the marinade and mix well. Roughly chop the sweetcorns and lightly beat the egg.
  2. Place 3 cups of water and chicken bouillon in a deep pot. Bring it to a boil. Add in minced ginger root and chopped sweetcorns. Cook over medium heat for 3 minutes. Add in the marinated chicken and stir until cooked, about 2 minutes. Season the soup with salt and pepper. Blend the cornstarch and water until smooth. Slowly pour into the soup, stirring constantly until thickened。 Add in the beaten egg and stir until egg swirl through the soup. Remove from heat.

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Snowflake Fish Curd Soup

Sunday, February 01, 2009

  • 125 g Skinless, boneless fish fillet
  • 2 Egg whites
  • 150-200 ml Water
  • 5 g Salt
  • 10 g Ginger juice
  • 30 g Starchy solution
  • 10 g Chicken oil
  • Salad oil
  • 15 g Dried mushrooms, soaked and chopped
  • Lettuce shreds
  • A few slices of carrots
  • 300 ml Vegetable or chicken broth
  • 5 g Jiafan rice wine
  • Salt to taste
  1. Chop the fish fillet until it reaches the puree consistency and dissolve it with some water. The quantity of water depends on the texture of fish, at about 150-200 ml.
  2. Season with the salt and stir constantly until thick and smooth. Then add in ginger juice, starchy solution, egg whites and chicken oil. Mix until the mixture is well combined and smooth.
  3. Place a wok or skillet over the low-middle heat and add in enough salad oil. Using a tablespoon to scoop the fish mixture into the heated oil. Take out as soon as the fish has shaped. Rinse them with a bowl of boiled water to get rid of extra oil.
  4. Add the broth in a skillet together with rice wine and salt. Bring it to a boil. Thicken with a little starchy solution. Add in mushrooms, carrot slices and lettuce. Return the fish and stir briefly. Serve immediately.

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