Monday, May 18, 2009

Fruit Cake

Fancy baking a fruit cake for any occasion? Christmas or wedding or Eid's so simple!
This easy boil and bake recipe was handed down to me by Kasmah Dewi. Together with the Chocolate Cake recipe (in previous entry), these two recipes will always remind me of my previous place of work, Hospital Sultanah Aminah.
This recipe has also undergone several experimentations over the years with substitution and addition of ingredients to the original recipe. This is the equivalent to home improvement in the kitchen.....recipe improvement!

Fruit Cake Kasmah Dewi

Ingredients A:
2 packets dried lime peel
1 box mixed fruit
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 cup water
8 oz butter
1 tsp ground cinnamon* (optional)
1 tsp ground allspice* (optional)

Ingredients B:
4 cups flour
1 tbs bicarbonate of soda
4 eggs (beaten)
1/2 cup golden syrup* (to replace "gula hangus")

Put ingredients A in a pan and bring to boil.
Simmer till sugar dissolved.
Cool to room temperature.
Add flour and eggs alternately into mixture.
Add golden syrup.
Turn into 8" lined and greased cake tin.
Bake in preheated oven at 180 C for 1 to 1 1/2 hour.

Simple right? Give it a try.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Chocolate Cake

Dear Chocoholics,

This recipe is dedicated to all chocoholics in the world. This could be the easiest moist chocolate cake recipe in the world. Steamed not baked. Try it out! It is "Better-Than-Sex Chocolate Cake" .... No lah! I am just exaggerating!

This recipe was given to me by MA Hamizan but since I have experimented with a few ingredients to enhance the chocolate flavour namely dash of salt, vanilla and coffee. Of course there's another flavour that I have not tried That'd be my future cooking experiment.

Moist Chocolate Cake MA HAmizan

Ingredients A
2 cups flour
1 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp soda bicarbonate
1 tsp baking powder
a dash of salt

Ingredients B
4 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup hot water
1 tbs instant coffee powder
1 can condensed milk
1 tsp vanilla

Sift all ingredients A.
Beat eggs.
Dissolve sugar and coffee in hot water.
Add condensed milk, oil and lastly the eggs. 
(Important to add eggs last or else you will get scrambled eggs)
Add ingredients A & B a little bit at a time till completely incorporated.
Pour into lined, greased pan and cover with aluminum foil.
Steam for 1 to 1 1/2 hour.
Cool in pan before turning out.

Chocolate Ganache
8 ounces (227 grams) semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into small pieces 
3/4 cup (180 ml) heavy whippingcream 
2 tablespoons (28 grams) unsalted butter 

Place the chopped chocolate in a medium sized stainless steel bowl. 
Set aside. 
Heat the cream and butter in a medium sized saucepan over medium heat. 
Bring just to a boil. 
Immediately pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for 5 minutes. 
Stir with a whisk until smooth.
Refrigerate till firm. (Best done the day before. Make sure cake is also cooled before spreading)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Cream Puffs/ Profiteroles

Yummy! This is also one of my favourites.
Choux pastry (pâte à choux) contains only butter, water, flour and eggs. No raising agent. Its raising agent is the high water content, which creates steam during baking, puffing out the pastry. That's why it requires a very hot oven Gas mark 6 or 7.

I rediscovered this when I was flicking through the pages of my recipe book. I am not sure where I copied it from but I have tried it long, long time ago. It looked just like the photo which I googled from Delia Online. Yes Delia Smith. She is an English cook and TV presenter. She was famous in those days.

Delia's version of profiterole has added 1 level teaspoon of caster sugar. It's a variation for those with sweet tooth. This is my version.

Ingredients: (makes 30)
1 cup of water
1/2 cup butter
1 cup flour (sifted)
4 eggs (beaten)
2 tsp cocoa powder

Heat water & butter in a pan until rolling boil then turn down to low heat.
Add sifted flour all at once, stirring vigorously until mixture leaves sides of pan clean.
Remove from heat and cool slightly.
Add beaten egg a little at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition until you have a smooth paste.
Beat in sifted cocoa.
Put 1 tsp paste on greased baking sheet on an oven tray about 1 inch apart.
Bake in preheated oven 425 Fahrenheit/ 220 Celcius for 10 minutes.
Reduce to moderate heat (350-400 F/180-200 C), bake for furtehr 40 minutes or until crispand  golden colour.
Remove from oven.
Make a small slit at sides of each puff to let steam escape.
Return to oven for afew minutes to dry out.
The allow to cool on a wire rack.
Then fill the puffs with whipped cream and pour melted chocolate on top and serve immediately.

Tips of the day:
Cup measure is a convenient way to bake but some recipes use other measurements such as ounce, gram or mililitre. After researching on the internet I found the equivalet measures for the cup measure for various ingredients.

1 cup of water = 250 ml water

Cake flour = 114g
White flour = 120g
Bread flour = 130g
Wheat flour = 140g
Note: This measurement requires one to spoon the flour into the cup, not scooping.

1 cup of butter = 227g = 8 oz
1/2 cup of butter = 113g = 4 oz = and this is equivalent to 1 stick of butter.
1 tbs of butter = 0.5oz

Friday, May 1, 2009

Mak Ngah's Ovaltine Biscuit

Dear Followers,

In the previous blog (Rock Cake), I mentioned about "raya cookies" and what I thought the origin of my interest in baking. This is one of the favourite "raya cookies". The recipe actually originated from my aunt's family (Mak Teh) but somehow or rather now all my relativesalways  associate this biscuit with my family. Everybody who visited our house during Eidul fitr will ask "Where's Mak Ngah's Ovaltine biscuit?". It's a MUST have cookie! 

Last year I think, my family almost broke the tradition. There was nobody to bake the biscuit for "raya". Noni (one of my younger sisters) the best person who can make this biscuit did not come home early that year. So NO Ovaltine biscuit! I thought this cannot be happening. So when she arrived home, I got her to make several batches of dough for the biscuit. The tedious part about making this biscuit is the rolling, cutting into shapes and baking. Imagine having to bake 8 batches of biscuit dough a day before and first day of "raya"! It was a labour of love in the name of tradition. Tradition is something which makes us unique. Fond memories follow this tradition. By writing this recipe in this blog I hope to make the memories everlasting. Memories of my family. Memories for the future.

Advance warning: The cup measure used in this recipe is non-standard. Traditionally, the cup used in this recipe is a teacup, not any teacup but a particular teacup. I will try get a photo of this teacup. Otherwise, the dough will either be too sticky or too hard. Actually, I have never experimented on a standard measurement cup before. Yeah I will carry out the experiment!
One other thing, some people may find this biscuit too hard but that's the way it's supposed to be. So don't roll 'em too thick.

1 cup Ovaltine (don't use Milo, it won't come out the same)
1/3 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup wheat flour
1 cup corn flour
1 cup tapioca flour (cassava root) 
1/2 cup margerine
1/2 cup condensed milk

Beat margerine & sugar.
Sift all flour & Ovaltine. Mix well.
Add into sugar mixture. Knead well.
Add condensed milk a little bit at a time depending on the stickiness of the dough.
Roll, cut and bake at 190 C for 10-12 minutes or till underside is golden brown.

Have a try. I like to bake some of the cookies a little bit chewy. It tastes almost the same as Famous Amos' chewy cookies.