Friday, December 23, 2011

Jam Donut Muffins

I did not make this recently. This was made like decades ago and I have all this pending pictures to share.

So here is my take on Jam Donut muffins.

I was searching the net for some sweet eats which has strawberry jam included in it. Did I tell you before that hubby has a craze for anything strawberry?

This was when I found this recipe and tried. At that time , donuts in Singapore was so over-rated and I just wanted to make 1 differently. I constantly made sure that the ingredients gonna be used is simple and easy to get. And this was what I got.

I'm crazy about minis and so I was thinking of eating donuts ( with fillings ) in a bite.

Jam Donut Muffins ( from )

  • 300g (2 cups) self-raising flour
  • 2/3 cup caster sugar, plus 1/2 cup extra to coat
  • 80ml (1/3 cup) vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 175ml buttermilk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tsp good-quality strawberry jam
  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
Preheat oven to 180°C and line a 12 hole mini muffin pan.
Sift the flour into a medium bowl, then add a pinch of salt and the caster sugar.
In a jug, combine the vegetable oil, egg, buttermilk and vanilla extract.
Add to the dry mixture and stir to only just combine.
Place a spoonful of the mixture in each muffin hole and make an indent in the centre. Fill each indent with a generous 1/2 teaspoon of strawberry jam.
Cover the jam with the remaining muffin mixture and bake for 20 minutes.
Remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly.
Meanwhile, melt the butter.
Combine the extra sugar and the cinnamon in a large bowl.
When the muffins are cool enough to handle, brush each muffin with the melted butter, then roll in the cinnamon sugar or dust it with some icing if you want.

Serve while still a little warm. It will be gone in minutes.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Nagasari ( Steamed Banana Dessert )

Nagasari is a steamed cake made from flour, coconut milk and sugar, filled with prefably Saba bananas ( pisang kepok ). It is usually wrapped in banana leaves before being steamed, or prepared with pandan that gives it aroma. It is commonly eaten as a snack in Indonesia.

As I was in a steaming banana mood, what could be more pefect right.

This recipe is taken from my helper who comes from Indonesia. She usually made this everytime guest comes to her house as all they had was uncooked rice, banana , coconut and necessary condiments.

I'm glad I could get hold of a real 'kampong' recipe.

Nagasari ( Steamed Banana Dessert )


1 cup - Rice Flour
5 cups - Coconut Milk ( i used fresh coconut milk sold in NTUC - not Kara )
2 tbl spoons - Corn flour
3 table spoons - Caster sugar ( it's also according to your sweet taste bud )
1/2 teaspoon - salt
5 - Saba bananas ( Pisang kepok )
2 pandan leaves - for boiling
Banana leaves - for wrapping


Tear up the banana leaf to a 15cm length and 10cm wide ( on estimation ) and wither over the steamer for 5 mins.

In a mixing bowl, combine flour, salt, sugar and mix well.

Pour over a saucepan and stir over medium heat until thick and set aside.

This is how the consistency should be
 Take one spoon dough , flattened it on a plastic sheet for easy moulding & place the cut banana in the centre as above picture.
Banana all wrapped up
Place it on the withered banana leaf
Wrap by folding the left and right

Well, these are my little mini Nagasari.

Steam in a steamer with boiling water for about 15 to 20 min. After 15 mins, you may open up the wrap to check if the banana is cooked. If it's not then you may steam for another 5 - 10 mins
Tip: Sprinkle the wraps with water to avoid the leaves from going dark.
 These goes great with a cup of tea on these rainy afternoons.

Enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, December 15, 2011


Meringue is a type of dessert made from whipped egg whites and sugar.

These confections are light, airy, delicious and low-fat! Color them to suit your special occasion--purple, pink, green, and blue for Easter, pink for Valentine's Day, pink and blue for a baby shower--the possibilities are endless!

Few types of meringue.

French Macaroons - Picture from

French meringue is the method best known to home cooks. Fine white sugar is beaten into egg whites. These ones with fillingd are called macaroons.

Italian Meringue - Picture from
Italian meringue is made with boiling sugar syrup, instead of caster sugar. This leads to a much more stable soft meringue which can be used in various pastries without collapsing. In an Italian meringue, a hot sugar syrup is whipped into softly whipped egg whites till stiff. This type of meringue is safe to use without cooking. It will not deflate for a long while and can be used on pies. 
Swiss Meringue -Picture from martha stewart
Swiss meringue is whisked over a bain-marie ( water bath ) to warm the egg whites, and then whisked steadily until it cools. This forms a dense, glossy marshmallow-like meringue.

My friends and I were having a pot luck party at her shop and i decided to add this sweet but low fat dessert fro their sweet tooth.

Meringue Cookies ( from )


4 egg whites, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon Cream of tartar 
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
25 to 30 drops of food colours of your choice
1 cup mini chocolate chips (optional)



Preheat oven to 225°F.

Beat egg whites in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until frothy. (If using a freestanding mixer, use wire whisk attachment.) Add cream of tartar; beat until soft peaks form. Increase speed to medium-high. Add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until sugar is dissolved and stiff peaks form. Beat in extract and food color until well blended. Gently stir in chips, if desired.

Scrape all the batter in a piping bag and piped out any kind of shapes you want. ( in these case, I made hearts ) and piped out about 1 inch apart onto 2 large foil-lined baking sheets sprayed with non stick cooking spray.
My marbled hearts meringue
Bake both sheets of meringues at the same time 45 minutes. Turn oven off. Let meringues stand in oven 1 hour or until completely cooled.
Happy Customers!
Meringues eaten like biscuits are baked at a very low heat for a long time. One name for them is "Forgotten Cookies"as they can be left in a gas oven for long periods of time after the cooking is done. They are not supposed to be "tanned" at all, but they need to be very crisp and dry. They will keep for at least a week if stored in an airtight container.

 Tips For Meringue Success
  • When making meringues, always cook egg whites or use purchased pasteurized egg whites to avoid salmonella poisoning.
  • Use fresh egg whites. Old egg whites tend to collapse when other ingredients are folded in, and they don't rise well in the oven.
  • Use eggs at room temperature if possible. Cold egg whites tend to reduce meringue volume.
  • Never let any yolk get into the whites.
  • Don't overbeat egg whites. (Overbeaten egg whites will look hard, lumpy or dry). When whipping egg whites, always start your mixer on medium-low to medium speed. Beat them until foamy and increase the speed to medium-high and then to high. If the egg whites are beaten too quickly at the beginning, the structure of the foam will not be as strong, and later the egg whites will not beat as high as they should.
  • A small amount of cream of tartar or vinegar can be added to the mixture at the beginning of whipping to help stabilize the foam and make it less likely to collapse.
  • Don't use plastic bowls – they can retain a film of fat from previously mixed or stored items that can deflate the meringue.
  • Don't make meringues on humid days. Humidity causes meringues to be sticky and chewy.
  • Bake meringues at low temperatures because they tend to brown quickly.
  • Leave hard meringues in the oven after baking so they will cool slowly and not crack.
try it! You'll love it!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Steamed Coconut Blossom

I love blossoms!

Everytime there is a family function , I would order this from my sister-in-law ( cause she made it so light and fluffy ) and she would never want to take my money for it. I would not want to take advantage of it and I also do not want to steal their family recipe and so I signed up for a steam cakes or in malay "Kelas Apam".

In the class, I learned how to beat these steam cakes at the right consistency and steam it at the right temparature.

My successful "Apam" results
And so , now that , I know the techniques of steaming, i browsed around on coconut blossoms recipes with my own alterations here and there. This was the addictive light and fluffy results where I can eat these anytime I want, cause it's so easy to make.

Photo is courtesy of Vanessa Wong from Salad Shop
Steamed Coconut Blossoms ( from )
3 cold eggs ( Grade A or slight smaller )
250 gm. sugar
10 ozs. (about 280 to 300 gm.) Hong Kong flour or SuperLite flour - (Sieve for extra fluffiness)
 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 Tbsp. ovalette ( 1 used a heap spoonful )
130 gm. (5 ozs.) coconut cream (can buy the box coconut milk e.g. Kara)
30 gm. pandan juice (blend about 6 pandan leaves)
1 tsp. pandan paste

1. Beat all the ingredients together until thick and fluffy.
2. Place the batter in a large piping bag for easy and clean pour

3. Pipe out batter ( about slightly less than half ) into the red cups or any steaming moulds you have (lined with paper cup), top up with coconut filling ( quantity is up to you ) - I like more coconut and then topped with more batter till almost full.
3. Steam over high heat for 15 mins.

250 gm. grated coconut
130 gm. gula melaka (palm sugar)
60 gm. water
1 tsp. cornflour
2 pcs. pandan leaves - cut into small pieces


(1) Cook sugar, gula melaka and water in a wok till sugar melts.

(2) Add in grated coconut and pandan leaves and fry till dry.

(3) Sprinkle cornflour on top and stir till well mixed.

(4) Cool before using.
Coconut fillings

Nice round and fluffy.

Even the birds want to eat it. hahahaha

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Baked Doughnuts - Anyway you want it!

I once made donuts - the fried version and a friend asked me if it was baked. It didnt cross my mind and I started searching.

I found this great recipe from Paris Pastry ,tried it and it turned out awesome. So much more interesting that a fried donut. Baked donut is healthier in a sense that all those oil in a fried donut does go in here.

This one is filled with strawberry jam

I tried it in so many different ways and this recipe was so versatile - i was amazed and so was my sister-in-law that she asked me to teach her the steps.

Time to share.

Baked Doughnuts ( from Paris Pastry )
Makes 2 dozen

- 1 ⅓ cups warm milk, 95 to 105 degrees
- 1 packet active dry yeast (2 ¼ teaspoons)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- ⅔ cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 5 cups all-purpose flour
- A pinch of nutmeg, freshly grated
- A pinch of ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt

- Place ⅓ cup of the warm milk in the bowl of an electric mixer. Stir in the yeast and set aside for five minutes or so. Be sure your milk isn't too hot or it will kill the yeast.
-Stir the butter and sugar into the remaining cup of warm milk and add it to the yeast mixture. With a fork, stir in the eggs, flour, nutmeg, and salt - just until the flour is incorporated. With the dough hook attachment of your mixer beat the dough for a few minutes at medium speed. This is where you are going to need to make adjustments - if your dough is overly sticky, add flour a few tablespoons at a time. Too dry? Add more milk a bit at a time. You want the dough to pull away from the sides of the mixing bowl and eventually become supple and smooth. Turn it out onto a floured counter-top, knead a few times (the dough should be barely sticky), and shape into a ball.

- Transfer the dough to a buttered (or oiled) bowl, cover, put in a warm place and let rise for an hour or until the dough has roughly doubled in size.

- Punch down the dough and roll it out ½-inch thick on your floured countertop. Using a doughnut cutter,  stamp out circles. I also did a few round balls and a few flat round where I planned to filled it with pastry cream  (like Boston Cream Donut) and another with strawberry jam cause that will be hubby's favorite. Transfer the circles to a parchment-lined baking sheet and Cover with a clean cloth and let rise for another 45 minutes.

- Bake in a 375 degree oven until the bottoms are just golden, 8 to 10 minutes - start checking around 8.

- Remove the doughnuts from the oven and let cool for just a minute or two.

Start decorating or filling it with your favorite fillings or toppings.
Cinnamon Sugar
Boston Cream

Almond Chocolate
Sugar with boston cream

The cream filled

All you have to do is poke these doughnuts with an apple knife and you can pipe in the cream or jam of your choice in the doughnut.
Eat immediately if not sooner.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Peach Walnut Galette

As the earlier posting promised!

I tried something new. It's just me, something different all the time. I love getting feedbacks so that I could learn the interest and likings of the people.

I love tarts but when I came around the Galette recipe, I get so excited.

I made these galettes miniature of course, but you could also use this to make one big galette, for a fairly quick and quite easy dessert. Little are always cute and it serves anyone who just want a bite of it.

White Peach Fruit with Walnuts Galettes 
makes 20 galettes

1/2 batch Pate Brisee (sweet shortcrust pastry), rolled out to two 1/8 inch thick discs and chilled (see recipe )  

¼ cup sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large peaches or 8 small peaches, pitted, and sliced
2 teaspoons lemon juice
zest of one lemon
1/4 cup walnuts chopped  finely

1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water ( for brushing )

Maple syrup for brushing ( optional, I omit this out and replaced a dallop of butter for a more buttery flakiness )

Sugar for sprinkling

In a medium bowl, mix together your fruit, 1/4 cup of sugar, flour, vanilla, ground cinnamon , lemon juice and lemon zest. Let the flavors mingle for at least an hour in the fridge. Meanwhile, remove one disc of dough from the fridge and use a 4.5-inch round cutter to cut 10 circles. (you may fit more, I got 12 out of some of my dough). Place circles back in fridge, and repeat with the other disc.

Pour fruit mixture into a sieve and set over a large bowl. Let as much liquid drain off as possible so your galettes don't get soggy.

Working with 6-7 discs at a time (if you can fit all 20 of these onto two baking sheets, go for it, I chose to work in smaller batches) re-roll each disc if needed, and space evenly on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Place about a teaspoon of chopped walnuts in the center of each round, and top nuts with about 1-2 tablespoons of your fruit mixture.

 Chill assembled galettes for at least 20 minutes before baking. This will also help them stay together in the oven, and encourage the flaky dough to develop properly.

Gently fold dough up around the fruit, crimping and pinching it together every so often. A trick here is to dip your crimping finger into your egg wash before each pinch, this way, they won't unfold and fall apart in the oven, as the egg acts as a glue. Brush some more egg wash over all the exposed dough (I just used my finger) and sprinkle about a teaspoon of turbiando sugar over dough and fruit. Repeat with remaining dough.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Bake on middle racks for 25-30 minutes, depending on how big your galettes are, and how thick the dough is, until the fruit is a little bubbly and the crust is a deep golden brown, switching pans top to bottom, and front to back halfway through baking time. Let cool completely on a baking rack, and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator if you are able not to eat them all straight from the oven.  

 These are delicious served warm, but were really really good served the next day at room temperature. Three days later, they are still wonderful straight out of the fridge.

Happy trying!

Pate Brisee ( Sweet Shortcrust )

Do you have a shortcrust pastry which you always go back to. I used to. I always refer to the Basic bakings of Rachell Allen's. It is buttery and simple. It's different now. Sorry Rachel, no offense.

I will say though that I tried a new pate brisee (sweet shortcrust) recipe, and I won't be going back to the old one. Ever. The last one I used from Rachel Allen was good, almost perfect in taste and texture,  but this one, oh my god, this one turned out flaky, buttery, and almost like a dense puff pastry. My friends widened their eyes in just 1 bite, already awe-ing for 1 more.. It's that good!

Take that crust and fill it with fresh stone fruit and ground nuts, and you have a winner. This is my kind of dessert, lots of butter, not too sweet, and comes in a compact size.

Pate Brisee ( Bourke Street Bakery Cookbook )

400 grams (14 oz) unsalted butter, chilled, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 tablespoon white distilled vinegar
100 grams (3 1/2 oz) granulated sugar
2/3 cup water, chilled
665 grams (1 lb 7 1/2 oz) all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt

Remove butter from fridge 20 minutes before mixing.

In a small bowl, combine sugar, water, and vinegar, stir to aid the dissolving of the sugar. Set aside in refrigerator for 10 minutes. Then, stir again to completely dissolve sugar.

In a food processor, pulse the flour and salt together a few times to combine. Add the butter, and pulse in one second bursts about 3-4 times until butter is cut in and evenly dispersed. You should have visible chunks of butter in your flour mixture, this is where the flakiness comes from.
Pour mixture into a large bowl and make a little well in the middle of the flour. Pour the vinegar water mixture into the well and gently mix liquids into the flour with a fork. When liquid is evenly dispersed, dump dough out onto a clean surface and knead gently a few times, just until dough comes together in one cohesive ball. It may be a bit shaggy or falling apart, but that's okay, while it is resting the moisture will bind everything together.

See - Visible chunks of butter
Cut ball of dough in 2 then in half and shape each half into a disc about 1/2 - 3/4 inch thick. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least two hours, or overnight. Take dough out of fridge about 30 minutes before you roll it out. Place dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll out to a 1/8 inch flat disc. Always start in the center of the disc and roll outward, turning the disc 30 degrees after each roll to get an even thickness throughout.  You are now ready to cut dough into circles for the galettes. Place thin discs on a flat platter or pan, and chill for two hours to let the gluten relax.

You may keep left over dough for up to 2 weeks in the freezer. Just remember to place it down to the refrigerator 24 hours before you decide to use it again.


Peach Walnut Galette.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Chocolate Chocolate-Chip Muffins

Hubby told me on short notice, about 1 and half hour before he goes to work that he wanted me to bake a goodbye treat for his Starhub colleagues. He has been working there for 5 years and he wanted to take a 1 month break before he started a new career.

My mind rushed and was thinking of the easiest and fastest treat to make. I was thinking brownies when Nigella's muffins came to my mind. That was just irresistable!

And so I gathered the ingredient and all was ready in 45 mins including packing time. hahah

These muffins a best made fresh and eaten warm. And i got a 2 thumbs up for the chocolatey awesomeness! I am NOT a chocolate person but this was an exception. I ate 3 of these and then it made me guilty.

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Muffins ( Nigella Lawson )
 ( make 12 regular size or 25 minis )

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons best quality cocoa powder
3/4 cup superfine sugar
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips, plus 1/4 cup for sprinkling
1 cup milk
1/3 cup plus 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Special equipment: 38/38 paper muffin cases
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F or 200 degrees.
Put the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa, sugar, and 3/4 cup of the chocolate chips into a large bowl.

I seriously do not know why I cant rotate this pic - Sorry!
Pour all the liquid ingredients into a measuring jug.

I hate blogger now!
Mix the dry and wet ingredients together, remembering that a lumpy batter makes the best muffins. Spoon into the prepared muffin cases. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup chocolate chips on top and then bake for 20 minutes or until the muffins are dark, risen and springy.
And the result , I had to bake a 2nd batch as per their request!