Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Strawberry Swiss Roll

I've had my fair share of Swiss roll failures.  I can count on my one hand the number of Swiss rolls I've had made so far.  I tended to avoid making Swiss rolls out of fear of failure.  The technique in rolling a perfect Swiss roll intimidates me.   I loved Swiss rolls and I can only admired the beautiful and perfect Swiss rolls some of  my fellow bloggers like Joceline LynEileen LeeSoniaAnn Low - just to name a few - shared. 

I saw a quote that said "Thinking will not overcome fear, but action will".  So yesterday, I plucked up my courage to give it another go since I have a tub of fresh cream sitting in my fridge unopened for more than a week.  And I have a big punnet of strawberries too.  

VERDICT:  My sponge turned out quite beautiful -  light and airy.  However,  I failed miserably when rolling the sponge.  Part of the smooth and nice surface of the sponge peeled off.  As I didn't spread the cream evenly, my roll turned out one end fatter than the other. FAILED!

I wasn't discouraged because my son said the Swiss roll tastes good.  The next morning, I decided to make another one.  Didn't they say 'Practice makes Perfect'?  

Anyway, here is  my second Strawberry Swiss Roll.  

VERDICT:  Far from perfect ... but I think good enough to post, agree?  

Adapted from  Joceline Lyn's Chocolate Strawberry Swiss Roll.


3 egg yolks (57g), room temperature
10g caster sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
20g oil
60g milk
50g plain flour
5g corn flour

3 egg whites (109g), room temperature
40g caster sugar

Filling: (Beat thickened cream and icing sugar together until light and fluffy)
95g thickened cream
10g icing sugar

7 strawberries, cut into halves

  • Preheat oven to 160°C.  Brush a 22 x 32 cm Swiss roll pan with melted butter and line with baking paper.
  • Sift plain flour and corn flour together.  Set aside.
  • Using a hand mixer, beat egg whites in a clean, dry mixing bowl until foamy. Gradually add in sugar and beat until until soft peaks form . Set aside.
  • Using the same hand mixer, beat egg yolks, salt, sugar and vanilla extract until pale and thick. Beat in oil and then milk.  Fold in flour mixture.
  • Pour one third of the meringue into the egg yolk mixture using a hand whisk.  Then gently fold in the remaining meringue in two additions using a spatula.  
  • Pour the batter into the prepared tray.  Spread evenly using a scraper.  Knock the tray on the benchtop to remove air bubbles trapped in the batter.
  • Bake in a preheated oven for about 20 minutes or until the sponge feels springy to the touch.
  • Remove from pan.  Cover with baking paper and place on a wire rack to cool.

How to roll up a Swiss Roll:
  • Flip the sponge onto a baking paper larger than the sponge and peel away the lining paper.
  • Trim off the stiff edges with a sharp knife. 
  • Slice out a small strip of sponge on a 45 degree angle on both ends.
  • With one of the shorter edges of the sponge nearest to you, score a line approximately 2.5 cm away from the edge, cutting right across the sponge, making sure the cut is not too deep; this will help you when you start to roll the sponge.
  • Spread evenly whipped cream over the sponge and place cut strawberries over the sponge.
  • Starting with the short edge and using the baking paper as a guide firmly roll up the cake.  Wrap in baking paper and place, seam-side down, on a baking tray.
  • Chill in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes to set.  Cut into slices to serve.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Savoury Bacon & Cheese Muffins

When I think of muffins, I always think of sweet ones.  This is my first time making savoury muffins and I put in whatever ingredients I could find in my fridge.  The combinations for savoury muffins are endless and with so many flavour possibilities, I am sure you can find something you and your family love.  If you somehow make too many, you can always freeze them for another day.  

These muffins turn out to be very soft, moist , tender and full of flavour.  

Ingredients:  Makes 6 big muffins
100g rindless bacon, chopped
35g leek, diced finely
25g red capsicum, diced finely

230g self-raising flour
100g shredded mozzarella, tasty cheddar & parmesan cheese (or just grated cheddar)
1/2 tsp garlic powder (optional)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
dash of pepper

200 ml milk
75g olive oil
1 egg, lightly beaten

  • Preheat oven to 180°C.  Line muffin pan with paper wrappers.
  • Heat a little olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat.  Fry the chopped bacon for a minute, then add in leek and cook until leek is soft.  Stir in capsicum.  Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  • Combine all the dry ingredients (B) in a large mixing bowl.  Stir in the cooked ingredients (A), mix well.
  • Combine all wet ingredients (C) in a jug, mix well.  Then pour into the flour mixture.  Stir gently until just combined.  (Do not over-mix or you'll end up with tough muffins caused by the overdevelops gluten in the flour.  The batter should be still lumpy; the lumps will disappear when the batter bakes).
  • Bake for about 25 - 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  • Cool muffins on a wire rack.  Store cooled muffins in an airtight container at room temperature. 

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Scalded/Cooked Dough Pandan Chiffon Cake ( 烫面班兰戚风蛋糕 )

Pandan Chiffon Cake
Pandan Chiffon Cake ( 班兰戚风蛋糕 )

This is my first attempt at making chiffon cake using the scalded/cooked dough  (烫面 tang mian) method  which received rave reviews from fellow food bloggers.  

With my limited knowledge in Chinese, I translated the recipe from The Kitchen 70's which later I found out from Hundred Eighty Degrees that I made a mistake - I heated up the coconut milk over a double boiler instead of on the stove.  Anyway, despite the mistake, the chiffon cake still turned out very light and spongy with velvety and delicate texture; and taste delicious too!  This chiffon is very forgiving, thank goodness!

100g coconut milk
20g caster sugar
75g corn oil
85g plain flour
15g corn flour
4 egg yolks
1/2 tsp pandan paste 

4 egg whites
50g caster sugar
1/8 tsp cream of tartar

1/4 tsp pandan paste

  • Sift plain flour and corn flour together.  Set aside.
  • Mix coconut milk, sugar and oil in a bowl and place it over a double boiler (ensuring that the bowl does not touch the surface of the water) and scald until it is hot to the touch. Stir occasionally.
  • Remove bowl from the double boiler.  Add in pandan paste, stir to combine; then add in flour mixture and mix well.  Then with an electric mixer, beat in egg yolks, one at a time. Mix well until smooth.
  • In a clean, dry bowl, whisk egg whites until foamy, add in cream of tartar.  Whisk until soft peaks form, then add in sugar in three additions.  Continue whisking until stiff peaks form.
  • Add one third of the meringue to the egg yolk mixture and using a balloon whisk, mix to combine.  Then with a rubber spatula,  fold in gently the remaining meringue.
  • Pour half of the batter into a mixing bowl and add 1/4 tsp pandan paste into it and stir quickly to combine.  
  • Alternately pour a small amount of the two batters on top of each other into a 20cm ungreased tube pan.  Bang the pan on the benchtop to release trapped air bubbles.
  • Bake in a preheated oven at 160 deg C for about 50 minutes.
  • Invert the cake pan immediately.
  • Remove the cake from the pan when it is completely cooled.

I'm submitting this post to Bake Along #64 - Chiffon Cakes
 an event organised by Joyce of Kitchen FlavoursLena of Frozen Wings and 

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Baked Flaky BBQ Pork Buns / Siew Bao (烧包)

Seremban  Siew Bao (.烧包)
Seremban Siew Bao (.烧包)
Seremban Siew Bao (.烧包)

Recipe Source :  My Kitchen Snippets with slight changes

Ingredients:  (Makes 21 buns)

Water Dough:
240g plain flour
60g icing sugar
60g cooking oil
90g water

Oil Dough:
240g plain flour
120g butter, cut into cubes

egg wash (1 egg, beaten)
white sesame seeds

  • Water Dough:  Put flour and cooking oil into a food processor and Pulse until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.  Add enough water to form a soft dough and lifts away from the food processor.  Remove and wrap the dough in cling wrap.  Set aside to rest for 30 minutes.
  • Oil Dough:  Put flour and butter into the food processor and Pulse to form a dough. Wrap with cling wrap.  Set aside for 30 minutes.
  • Divide both dough into 21 equal portions.  
  • Flatten the water dough and wrap oil dough in it.  Shape into a ball.  Using a rolling pin, flatten it and roll into an oblong shape. Then roll it up swiss roll style.  Turn 90 degrees and using the rolling pin, roll it out again into an oblong shape.  Then roll it up swiss roll style.  Repeat for the rest of the dough.
  • Flatten the rolled dough with your palm and using a rolling pin, roll out into a round disc. Place filing in the centre and pleat to seal the bun.  Place on a tray lined with baking paper. Repeat for the rest of the dough.
  • Brush buns with egg wash and sprinkle sesame seeds on top of the buns.  
  • Bake in a preheated oven of 180 deg C for 30 minutes.  

Char Siew

Ingredients for Fillings:

300g BBQ pork (Char Siew) - cut into small cubes
3 shallots, diced
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
1/2 cup water
1 tbsp cooking oil
1 tsp sesame oil

2 tsp cornflour + 2 tbsp water

  • Heat about 1 tbsp oil, stir fry shallots until fragrant.  Add in BBQ pork and the rest of the ingredients, except thickening.  Fry for about 2 - 3 minutes.  Add in sesame oil.
  • Pour in cornflour mixture, stir to combine and until the gravy has thickened.  Dish out and let it cool.  (or refrigerate it overnight)

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Mini Sausage Wholemeal Bread Rolls ( 港式迷你全麦肠仔包)

Sausage Wholemeal Rolls

On the same day that  I made the white Mini Sausage Bread Rolls, I also made another batch using the bread dough for Kopitiam Milk Buns .  However, this time I substituted the plain bread flour with wholemeal bread flour; still soft and fluffy.  

(A)  Overnight Sponge Dough:  Mix into a dough and leave overnight in the fridge:

215g bread flour
145g fresh milk
2g instant dried yeast

(B)  Bread Dough:

100g wholemeal bread flour
30g fresh milk
30g egg (lightly beaten)
7g instant dried yeast
5g salt
60g caster sugar
12g milk powder
45g Rice Bran oil

18 mini frankfurts, lightly grilled egg wash (1 egg beaten with 2 tbsp water)

white sesame seeds
black sesame seeds

  • Bring the overnight dough to room temperature.
  • In a mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the overnight dough (cut into small pieces) together with all the ingredients in (B), except the oil.
  • Knead until it forms a slightly sticky soft dough.  Gradually add in oil.  Continue to knead until smooth and elastic.  
  • Shape the dough  into a smooth ball and place in a greased  bowl.  Cover with  clingfilm.  Then place it in a warm, moist and draught-free place to allow the dough to rise until double.
    Once the dough has doubled in size, press down gently on the dough to deflate it.
  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly oiled work surface.  Divide equally into 18 portions.  Roll them into balls, covered with cling wrap and let them rest for 15 minutes.
  • Working with one piece at a time, using a rolling pin, flatten each ball of dough into an oval shape.  Roll the dough into a cylinder.   Rest for about 10 minutes.  Then using a rolling pin flatten the dough into a triangular shape. Place a sausage on the wider end of the (triangle) dough and roll up.  
  • Place rolls on a tray lined with baking paper, covered with cling wrap and leave to rise until almost doubled (80 - 90%).
  • Preheat oven to 170 deg .
  • Brush egg wash on surface of the rolls and sprinkle sesame seeds on top.  Bake for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Transfer onto a wire rack to cool.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Mini Sausage Bread Rolls ( 港式迷你肠仔包)

Sausage Rolls
Sausage Rolls
Sausage Rolls
Sausage  Rolls

When I saw Sonia made these cute little sausage bread rolls, I was tempted.  I know kids will love them and they are the perfect size for little hands to hold.  True enough, they were a hit with my friend's children and also my little nephew.

I love the softness of the 'five thousand dollar bread recipe' which I made a few months ago so I am using the same recipe to make 18 mini buns.


Starter Dough:
105g bread flour
45g plain flour
12g caster sugar
3g instant dried yeast (3/4 tsp)
120g water

Main Dough:
105g bread flour
45g plain flour
45g caster sugar
1/2 tsp salt
12g milk powder
45g egg (lightly beaten)
27g water
35g butter, softened

18 mini frankfurts, lightly grilled

egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tbsp water)
white sesame seeds
black sesame seeds

  • Mix all the starter dough ingredients until well combined.  Cover and leave at room temperature until the dough rises and becomes sticky, pastry and have a stringy appearance ("honeycomb"-like).  
  • In a mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine all main dough ingredients, except butter. Then add in  the starter dough, knead until well combined. Add in butter and continue kneading until dough is smooth and elastic and leaves the sides of the bowl. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover with cling wrap.  Place it in a warm place to allow the dough to rise until doubled in volume.
  • Punch down the dough to release trapped air.  Divide dough into 18 equal portions. Roll each portion into a ball.  Cover with cling wrap and rest them for 10 minutes.
  • Using a rolling pin, flatten each ball of dough into an oval shape.  Roll the dough into a cylinder.   Rest for about 10 minutes.  Then using a rolling pin flatten the dough into a triangular shape. Place a frankfurt on the wider end of the (triangle) dough and roll up. 
  • Place rolls on a tray lined with baking paper, covered cling wrap and  leave to rise until almost doubled (80 - 90%).
  • Preheat oven to 170 deg .
  • Brush egg wash on surface of the rolls and sprinkle sesame seeds on top. Bake for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Transfer onto a wire rack to cool.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Pork Knuckles & Ginger in Black Vinegar (豬腳姜醋)

Pork Trotters & Ginger in Black Vinegar (豬腳姜醋)

Pork Trotters & Ginger in Black Vinegar (豬腳姜醋)

Pork Trotters & Ginger in Black Vinegar (豬腳姜醋)

This is a popular Chinese  confinement dish yet I wasn't served this dish during my confinement.   I later found out that it was a traditional confinement food  for the Cantonese. That makes sense, because my mother, who cooked for me during my confinement  is a Teochew and she admitted that she has never cooked this dish before.  I learned this dish from a good friend and since then it has become one of my favourite dish.  And you don't have to have a baby to enjoy this deliciously fragrant and appetising dish with the soft and succulent meat falling off the bones which is loaded with collagen. While you are enjoying this, forget about cholesterol level and clogged arteries.  


2 pork knuckles,  cut into big pieces
3 pieces gravy pork, cut into pieces
3/4 of a bottle of black vinegar (500ml) - adjust according to individual taste
1 bottle of sweet vinegar (500ml) - adjust according to individual taste
700g young ginger, sliced
about 200g palm sugar - adjust according to individual taste
3 dried chillies (optional) - soaked to soften
salt to taste
cooking oil

  • Blanch pork knuckles and gravy pork.  Drain.
  • Fry the ginger slices in a wok (without oil) until dry.  Add a little oil and continue to fry the ginger until aromatic.  Then add in pork knuckles and gravy pork, and fry for a minute or two until dry. Pour in about a cup of black vinegar and keep frying until fragrant.  
  • Transfer everything into a large saucepan. Pour in the black vinegar and sweet vinegar and add in the palm sugar, salt and dried chillies.  (Adjust the quantity of the black and sweet vinegar and also the palm sugar according to your own taste).
  • Bring it to the boil.  Then lower the fire and let it simmer for about 2 hours or until the meat is tender.
[This dish is best eaten the next day)

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