Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Chocolate Brownie with Choc Syrup & Choc Ice Cream

Being a chocoholic myself, a chocolate dessert is a must for every occassion. I made this for the BBQ the other day. Very easy to make......there are many versions. This is from my fav Chef at Home, Michael Smith.

Choc Brownie
12 oz bittersweet dark chocolate
8 oz butter
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup flour
1 tbs baking powder
2 tbs cocoa powder
A pinch of salt
4 eggs
A big splash of vanilla
(You can add 1 cup of chopped walnut or any nut if you want. I did not add any coz I don't have any at the time)

Preheat the oven to 350 F (175 C). Toss the chocolate and butter into a small bowl set over a small pot of simmering water (bain marie). This will insulate the delicate chocolate from direct heat and keep it from scorching. As they begin to melt stir until smooth then remove from the heat.
In a large bowl sift the flour, salt and baking powder together.
In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla together then stir into the chocolate. Stir in the dry ingredients and walnuts.
Lightly oil the bottom and sides of an 8” by 12” baking pan. Sprinkle a bit of flour into the pan and shake until all the surfaces are evenly covered. Tap the pan upside-down on the counter to dislodge any extra. Pour in the batter and bake until set, about 40 minutes.

It took me only about an hour from start (measuring ingredients) to finish baking.
Best served with ice cream (chocolate of course) and choc syrup. 
Triple chocolate dessert!
This is how to make choc can buy of course if no time. 

Choc Syrup
1 can unsweetened evaporated milk
2 handfuls choc chips
2 tbs cocoa powder
2 tbs brown sugar (less if you want less sweet or if you use sweetened choc chips)
Splash of vanilla

Whisk over low heat (bain marie)

This choc brownie was also a hit like the lamb. However, there's a special request for the Chocolate Molten Cake that I made earlier last December. I am gonna make 'em tomorrow. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Stirfried Rice with Prawns

Breakfast.....what to eat for breakfast?
Toasted bread.....boring!
Frozen roti canai.......boring!
A look in the rice cooker & the freezer....... there are some leftover rice & leftover prawns (from bbq the other day).

It's time for a quick stirfried rice with prawns.

2 red chillies (or more if u like some heat)
1 onion
2 cloves garlic
dried anchovies (or dried shrimp...whatever u have)
Pound/blend all the ingredients.
Heat some oil.
Stirfry till fragrant.
Break an egg & stir.
Add prawns. Cook for 2-3 min.
Add rice (my mum usually add salt to the rice beforehand)
Add thawed frozen veg.
Splash of soya & oyster sauce.
Stirfry till rice fully heated.
Garnish with coriander leaves & spring onion if u want.

Quick & easy breakfast .........from leftovers!
Waste not, want not!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

BBQ Honey Chicken, BBQ Mint Lamb & BBQ Chilli Prawns

Yesterday I hosted a barbeque for my family & in-laws.
Among the dishes in the menu were bbq honey chicken, lamb chops with mint & citrus juices, prawn with olive oil & chillies and cockles.
Only managed to take photo of the chicken only........ coz the lamb chops were gone in a jiffy before I even get to the camera! It was a HIT!

This is the recipe for the BBQ honey chicken. Basically, almost the same ingredients for satay marinade with honey and a few personal improvisations.

For 1 whole chicken you need:
1 tbs coriander seed
1 tsp aniseed (jintan manis)
1 tsp cummin seed (jintan putih)
Toast these 3 spices in a skillet.
2 inch ginger
2 inch fresh turmeric
2 cloves garlic
2 onions
2 stalks lemon grass
a bunch of dried chillies (as much as u can tolerate)
Put all in blender.

2 tbs sweet soya sauce
1 tbs thick soya sauce
1 tbs oyster sauce
4 tbs honey

Add blended ingredients with chicken in a sealable bag (easy storage in fridge, no washing up & meat and marinade will mix better in a bag)
Marinate for 2-4 hours (overnight if possible)
Take out of fridge well before barbequeing so that meat is at room temperature.

BBQ Mint Lamb
For every 2 racks of lamb chops (12-16 chops usually)
Crush a bunch of mint leaves
Juice from 1 orange & 1 lemon
1 tbs oyster sauce
Salt & pepper

Marinate for 1-2 hours in a sealable bag.
Same as before.....let meat to room temperature before bbqing.
Best served with black pepper sauce.

BBQ Chilli Prawn
Devein & butterfly prawns but keep shells on.
Chop some chillies
Add some olive oil
Salt & pepper
Marinate in a sealable bag.

Cockles (kerang)
Wash 'em.
Then just toss 'em on the bbq.
Easy peasy!

I made a small basket using aluminium foil (double-layer).
Make some holes at the bottom with a fork.
So that they won't roll all over your bbq grill.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Prawn with Coconut Milk/Bird's Eye Chilli (Udang Masak Lemak Cili Padi) & Stirfried Pumpkin

I just had the urge to be a chef yesterday. I feel the need to flex my "culinary skills".

So I figured out a couple of simple dishes to cook.... actually I don't need a recipe book, it's in my head already. Chef Michael Smith always says "the secret of cooking is cooking without a recipe". Yeah! Right! He can say that coz he was trained as a chef...... I am an amatuer cook. Nevertheless, everyone knows how to cook "masak lemak" but there are variations on how to cook it.

Here's the first recipe:

300-400g prawns
 --> wash with tamarind juice (to get rid of the fishy .... or rather prawny smell)
A bunch of bird eye chillies (cili padi) 
--> the amount is up to you actually.... I like it mild although my other half like it hot hot hot! So she always complains that my cooking is not  HOT enough!
3 shallots
2 garlic
1 turmeric leave
1 lemon grass (bruised)
1 dried tamarind slice or 2 tomatoes (to add sourness)
1 anchovies cube
Enough coconut milk (2 cups or so)
salt to taste
Optional: you can add long beans

Pound bird eye chillies, shallots & garlic.
Pour coconut milk in a pot. 
Add pounded ingredients, lemon grass, turmeric leave and acnhovies stock.
Simmer on a slow fire and always stir. DO NOT leave unstirred or the coconut milk will "separate".
Let simmer.
When boiling, this is the time to add the long beans.
Then add prawns followed by tamarind slice or tomatoes.
Add salt to taste.
Once the prawns has changed color, remove from heat.

For the next recipe, easy peasy;

Anchovies or dried shrimps
Oyster sauce
Fish sauce
Light soy sauce

Chop up shallot, garlic & chillies.
Heat some veg oil.
Sir fry anchovies/shrimp and chopped ingredients.
Add pumpkin. Stir.
Add sauces and a bit of water.
Cover & simmer till pumpkin tender (NOT mushy!)


Finished in less than 1 hour.
Waited my other half to arrive home.
Had early dinner for 2 at 6.45pm
No candlelight though!
Unfortunately, it was NOT Thursday night! You know what I mean! :-)