Saturday, November 15, 2008

Couch potato - chinese dishes

This is not the name of some bakes. I just finished watching Kylie Kwong on Discovery channel - Travel and living. This is one of my favourite channel where I catch programs from travel and cooking. Kylie cooked Kung Bao chicken, and Ma Po To Fu and a few other dishes today. The seasonings she put into the dishes are namely brown sugar, then soy sauce to balance the sweetness and then black vinegar to balance the oil, then the chinese wine and sesame oil. It seems like a standard, and all the dishes looks shiny with the oil coating the ingredients. So lovely looking. How to be healthy when tasty dishes are often pretty oily. My mother used to tell me that my grandma would always tell her to cook with alot of oil, else the dish would not taste good. My mother in law's dishes are often oily too .. but of cos they are tasty.

Another program that I always watch is Nigella Express. Can often pick up some tips here and there, but I usually do not jot down and they get forgotten. Anyway, if I am to use pre washed ingredients, ready made ingredients, with all the right utensils lying around readily to be pick up and used, and do not need to do wash up after that, I believe cooking will be much enjoyable and fast too.

Ok, I just want to jot down what I have seen in Kylie's program just now.

Kung Bao Chicken (only manage to see her start from stir frying the chicken)
She mentioned corn flour coating the chicken pieces making them shiny. I think she then add the peanuts, then the seasonings, then the dried chilli, then dish up.

Ma Po Tou fu
She start with pounding a chilli paste with dried chilli flakes and szechuan peppercorns. Add oil to bind the mixture. Heat up the wok with oil, then stir fry garlic and ginger, then the prepared chilli paste. In goes the minced meat, then soy sauce and then water to "create" the sauce. I forgot what is the order of the standard seasonings thou. Then in goes the diced tofu, quick stir and dish up.

She also stir fry a dish of shitake mushroom with tomato. Looks good, but mushroom with tomato? Cant remember much of the dish now. *sigh* Thats how short my memory is. But I think the final picture of the dishes has carrot and sugar snap or snow pea.

I am not a good cook or baker, but I can sit all day just to watch all the cooking programs.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Pumpkin cake in cups

I chanced upon this pumpkin cake from the blog (Pure enjoyment) by KWF.
I always like mixer free bakes, and pumpkin is a very nutritious fruit/vegetable that I would like my kids to take. They do not like pumpkins cooked in anyway (so do I) and since they love cakes, this would be a good try to get them take in pumpkin. I have learnt that the size of cake pan matters in the success rate of the cake, but I really do not have the right size loaf pan, so I give it a try with the cups. I chose the original recipe but replace caster with brown sugar since I feel that brown sugar is healthier.

Look at the shimmering tops of the pumpkin "cup" cake. A pity I did not take note of the time that I use躲 on this batch.

My girl and hubby love it, so did my mother. I also gave a few to my boy's classmate's mummy and she too commented that it is good. I think it is a little too sweet (not sure if its the sugar or pumpkin, but the raw pumpkin is sweet) and it is too oily ... perhaps I have omited the ground nuts, thats why? My boy didn't really like the taste, and I am not sure if it is the aroma from the brown sugar. I told him I will give it a go with caster sugar just for him.

I have just gotten hold of ground hazelnut and the right size loaf pan. Will buy pumpkin tomorrow then will have to find a time to bake it. I think I am also going to get this book.

Here's the dissected pumpkin cake.


Monday, November 10, 2008

Play Cheat Chilli Tuna Puff

I came across a blog or somewhere in the net that
mention using roti prata to make the skin of curry
puff, so since I have two frozen prata slices, i open
a can of chilli tuna and try it out.

I have to half the round prata, wait for a while for
the skin to thaw, put in the filling, fold and seal
it by using a fork to press all round the edges. Then
egg wash the puff and send it to oven.

I made 4 puffs with the pratas, only one is presentable,
cos by trial and error, I only manage to seal my puff
properly with the ok amount of filling. Anyway, after
baking for sometime, the puff still breaks open (goes
to show that I did not seal it properly still) due to
the "boiling" chilli tuna sauce (guess I must drain more
of the sauce off).

Another problem is that the puff are flat on one side
since it is place flat on the baking tray ... so still
not so presentable leh.

Anyway, can eat can liao, fast and good and tasty.
Maybe next time try other filling.


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