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Monday, January 31, 2011

Fish Cakes

              Fragrant Oil

                  120 ml          Ground nut Oil
                      3               Shallots/small onions, slice
                      1"              Ginger, smash

               Method for Fragrant Oil

                      Fry the shallots & ginger in the hot oil.  Strain, cool it completely.

              Ingredients for fish paste

              600 gm             Ikan Tenggiri, nett weight after removal of skin & bones
               1/2 teasp          Ground white pepper
                  2 teasp          Salt
                  1 teasp          seasoning, opt
                  1 Tabsp        Castor sugar
               160 ml              Ice cold water
                 40 gm             Tapioca Flour, sieved
                  1/2                 Egg white, beaten

            Method for fish paste
  1. Wash fish then dry with paper kitchen towel.  Remove meat with the aid of a spoon.
  2. In a bowl put the meat, salt, sugar, white pepper powder, seasoning, opt & manually knead & mix, always going in one direction only.  Do not over knead.
  3. Mix sieved Tapioca flour with the ice cold water. Then add in the beaten egg white [rem to only use 1/2 an egg white only]
  4. Add tapioca flour water solution slowly into the fish mixture and mix in going round & lifting & banging into the bowl a couple of times & mix till it becomes guey & smooth [Most important Cannot over knead].  (A test for smoothness is squeeze a small ball of the mixture between your forefinger & thumb).
  5. Warm up 40 ml fragrant oil for 20 second [warm, it is easier to mix] add a drop of sesame oil if you want [do not add more sesame oil; a little goes a long way :) ].
  6. Add the slightly warm fragrant oil into the fish paste & mix.

                   (a)  You can add a little chilli padi & minced garlic.
                   (b)  You can add it into soup or it can be deep fried; for deep fried see steps below.

                                              Deep fried Fish Cake


              600 gm           Fish Paste
              400 gm           Wantan Skin
                  5                 Fresh Red Chilli
                  5 gm           Garlic
                  5 gm           Spring Onion

           Method for Deed Fried Fish Cake
  1. Cut wantan skin into round circles.
  2. Cut either WAX paper Or banana leaf & place them in bamboo basketS.  If using banana leaf grease the banana leaf slightly with oil for easy removal.
  3. Chop the garlic, red chilli & spring onion.
  4. Add it to the prepared Fish Paste.
  5. In the meantime boil water in a steamer.
  6. Put a ball of fish paste in the centre of each wantan skin.
  7. Place another wantan skin on top & then flatten it.
  8. Place them in the prepared bamboo baskets.
  9. Steam over for 3 minutes only.  Take them out & cool.
  10. Pat the top & bottom with a little tapioca flour & deep fry in medium hot oil for 1 minute.
  11. Remove and place on paper kitchen towels to drain excess oil.
           This may seem to be alot of work but it is worth the effort involved as first, when done yourself, there are no perservatives & it beats the hell of buying them.  All I can say is that whenever I make anything be it baking or cooking & even though I may have Baked or Cooked them many times, I never take it for granted that I can remember everything or the steps involved.  I always make it a point to Always read my recipe before I start in order to familarise myself :) Ophelia

             Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Stir fried Lobster

          This dish is incredible! If you are staying overseas where lobsters are cheap, do this.  The aroma and taste is incredible as salted fish is also used and for those of us who are quite not so fortunate, use large prawns instead :) Ophelia


               1              whole Lobster approximately 1 kg
               5 Tabsp    Oil


              50 gm        *Dried Scallops [soak in hot water 10 minutes then flake the meat]
              30 gm        Ginger
                3 pips       Garlic
                4              Fresh Waterchestnut/Mah Tai
              30 gm         Carrot
                3               Chilli Padi
                1 Tabsp     Salted fish, minced [Salted fish from Kuantan, is the best]


                 1 Tabsp    Sugar                                                                  
                 1 Tabsp    Brandy
                 1 Tabsp    Oyster Sauce
                 1 Tabsp     Light Soya Sauce
                 1/2 teasp   Corn flour
                 1 teasp      Black Vinegar
                 1 teasp      Tau Cheong/Soya Bean Paste
                 1 teasp      Sesame Oil
                           Mix "B" in a bowl.


                    80 gm        Snow Peas
                      1              Red Chill Padi
                      3              Spring Onion, smash [Use only the white part ie the head]
                      1 pair        Chinese Liver Sausage

  1. Cut lobster into 3 segments.  Use a spoon to remove the meat from the head & tail segments.  As for the centre segment chop the meat together with its shell.  Keep the head & tail for garnish.
  2. Add 5 tablespoon of oil & fragrant.
  3. Add in the head and tail, stir fry for a while then add in the meat & stir fry short while as you dont want to over cook same.
  4. Add in "B" & bring it to a boil on medium low heat.
  5. Add in "C" & stir fry short while.  Take note that this dish does not have much gravy.


                  Put the lobster in a flat platter then decor it with either sliced oranges or Mandarin oranges at the rim of platter.  A sprig of yin sai/coriander leaf at one end.

                   Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

Melt in the mouth version of Tarts


                    Pineapple filling

                       6                 Big Pineapples
                   600 gm           Castor Sugar
                       1 teacup      Water

  1. Place a big siever on a pot & place grated pineapples until juice comes out.  [Do not squeeze the juice otherwise texture of jam not smooth.
  2. Put the water in a wok. Add the sugar, stirring all the while. When sugar has melted, add in the grated pineapples. Cook on medium low fire for half an hour or until pineapple is golden brown.  Cool completely.
                   Ingredient for Pastry

                  250 gm           Butter, Salted
                    50 gm           Icing Sugar, sieved
                   1/2 teasp        Vanilla
                   2 "A"              Eggs [1 "A" egg weighted without shell is
                                                   equivalent to 55 ml therefore 110 ml]
                  400 gm            All Purpose Flour/Tepung Gandung, sieved

                  For glazing/egg wash - 1 Egg yolk + 1/2 Tabsp Milk + Pinch of Salt

  1. Beat butter & sieved icing sugar with K Beater for a short while [Do not over beat].
  2. Add the egg yolks & Vanilla & continue to beat short while till mixture incorporates.
  3. Add in all the flour altogether & beat short while, making sure that the butter has been beaten & mixed well.
  4. Put in nestar mould & pump long strips.
  5. Take a pastry cutter & "thin" the strip by hitting it gently all the way down [this helps to thin the pastry] if you want to join to strips, put them in a line, use the pastry cuttery & hit it, all the way down.
  6. Add the pineapple filling & roll it.
  7. Egg wash the top of the tart.
  8. Bake in pre heated oven at 140 degrees Centigrade for 25 - 30 minutes till the top is golden brown and the bottom is slightly brown [everyone's oven is different so you should know how to gauge the time].
                          Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Khek Char Yoke, non halal

                    An awesome dish.  I love cooking this and the aroma that fills the kitchen makes one hungry. Ophelia

                                            Khek Char Yoke

                            All measuring spoons are the cake measuring spoons

             1 kg            *Belly Pork
             [*Season the Belly Pork for 3 hours in the fridge

                          1 teasp            Salt [level teasp]
                        1/2 teasp           5 Spice Powder
                        1/2 teasp           Ground White Pepper
                          1 Tabsp           Shao Xing Wine OR Brandy
                          1 Tabsp           Light Soya Sauce
                          1 Tabsp           Red Fermented Bean Curd JUICE*]

                        1                         Egg, whisk it                     ]  This egg & flour is to be added
                        1 Tabsp              All Purpose Flour, sieved ]   onto the meat just before frying

                      50 gm                   Black Fungus, soak in water for 20 minutes then slice

                        1 piece               Red fermented bean curd                      ] Put these 3
                        1 teasp               Ground Soya Bean Paste/Tau Cheong   ] in a bowl &
                        1 Tabsp              Garlic, chop finely                                 ] mix it well


               1 1/2 Tabsp              Oyster Sauce                                  ] Put in another
               1/2 Tabsp                 Maggi Concentrate Chicken Stock  ] all these
                   1 Tabsp                Light Soya Sauce                            ]
                1/2 Tabsp                Castor Sugar
                   1 teasp                  Black Soya Sauce
                   1 teasp                  Sesame Oil
                   1 Tabsp                Shao Xing Wine OR Brandy           ]

       Thickening Solution : 1 Tabsp Corn Flour mix with 1/2 Tabsp Water

  1. Marinade the pork in *meat seasoning for 3 hours in the fridge.
  2. Take the meat out from the fridge & thaw for 40 minutes.
  3. Heat alot of oil in wok for deep frying.
  4. Beat the egg.  Coat the meat with the beaten egg then mix the flour to the meat.
  5. Deep fry the meat in batches for 5 minutes.  Remove meat & place on kitchen paper towels.  Enjoy the aroma :)
  6. Remove the oil; leaving about 3 tablesp of oil in the wok.  Stir fry the garlic in the oil then add the Red Fermented bean curd & Soya bean paste and fry for about 3 minutes, 
  7. Add in the meat stir for 2 minutes.  Then add in water, the water should be slightly higher than the level of the meat increase fire to high once boiling Reduce to medium low heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
  8. Pour in #the seasoning & black fungus, stir and simmer on medium low heat for another 15 minutes.
  9. Add the cornflour solution, stir, increase fire to high & bring it to a boil.  Off fire.

                (a)  We were taught by our Chef that:-

                        (i) when you simmer it is always on medium low heat;
                        (ii) when you boil it is on high heat;
                        (iii) that you usually bring it to a boil then lower the heat and simmer;
                        (iv) when you add cornflour solution to thicken gravy you MUST always bring it to a boil
                               then off the fire otherwise it gets "floury".

                  (b)  My family loves to eat this either with rice or sometimes I just serve it with kon loh
                         mee and blanched choy sam.

                          This dish is a keeper and is lovely eaten the next day too!!!

                          Till my next post, Ophelia

Monday, January 24, 2011

Honey Snaps

Crunchy Honey Snaps for TV snacking


                  60 gm             Butter
                  50 ml              Honey
                    1 Tabsp       Sugar
                                          Pinch of Salt


                50 gm               Kellogg's Corn Flakes
                50 gm               Kellogg's Rice Krispies
              100 gm               Peanuts, toasted
                  2 Tabsp         Sesame Seeds, toasted

  1. Fry ground nuts in a pan without oil.  Remove the skin straight away otherwise when peanuts are cold hard to remove skin.
  2. Fry sesame seeds in a pan without oil.  Cool completely.
  3. Boil "A" till sugar melts on low heat.  Off fire mix in "B" & stir till combine.
  4. Scoop into tiny paper cup & bake at 170 degrees Centigrade for 8 - 10 minutes.
             Comments :-

                   (a)  You cannot fry both the peanuts and sesame seeds together as both are different in size

                   (b)  This is easy to make as does not necessitate using any machine.

                   (c)  We were taught by our Chef to put a double paper cups as doing this gives the paper
                          cup more firmer to hold whatever we want to bake, you can do this also when you are
                           baking cup cakes.

                                 Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Malai Kwai

                 "A" - Starter dough

                 150 gm                  Tepung Gandung/All Purpose Flour, sieved
                   35 gm                   Castor Sugar
                 100 ml                     Water
                     2 level teasp       Instant Yeast


                  40 gm                      Tepung Gandung/All Purpose Flour              ] sieved all these
                  40 gm                      Corn flour                                                    ] 3 together
                  20 gm                      Milk powder                                                ]

                120 gm                      Castor Sugar
                130 gm                      Brown Sugar
                   5 "A"                      Eggs
                170 ml                       Vegetable Oil
                   2 teasp                   Akaline Water


                1 1/2 teasp                Double Action Baking Powder
                 3/4 teasp                  Sodium Bicarbonate

  1. In a large bowl mix sugar, tap water & instant yeast short while till yeast dissolves.  Let it rest for 5 - 10 minutes.  Then pour in the tepung gandung/all purpose flour & stir with a wooden spoon for 2 - 3 minutes then knead with your hands short while also then bang it against the bowl a couple of times.  At this juncture it is sticky.  Leave it, covered with cling film to rest for 12 hours at room temperature.  After 12 hours this starter dough is sour & holey.
  2. Beat the eggs manually.
  3. Put 2 teasp Akaline water, both sugars to the starter dough & use your hands to mix it well.  The sour smell should disappear when Akaline water is added :) then add in the beaten eggs gradually & pull the dough quite high & mix with your hands still.  Then add in the sieved flour mixture & stir around with your fingers & "pull it high" & stir round a couple of times.  Mix it well.  Leave it at room temperature covered with cling wrap for 3 - 4 hours.  After 3 - 4 hours it is very foamy and has alot of big and small bubbles.  For this time frame of  3 - 4 hours, you have to see through the cling film for this stage.
  4. Add in the Double Action Baking Powder & Sodium Bicarbonate on the femented dough & mix.  Then add in the oil & stir it to incorporate same & sieve it into another container. 
  5. Once you have done that pour the mixture into a ratan basket lined with grease proof paper, the height of the grease proof paper is higher than the basket & steam for 35 - 40 minutes on medium high fire.
  6. When you want to remove kueh, turn over the lid quickly and wipe droplets of water as you dont want the water to drop onto the kuih as it will "stain" the kueh.  [As a matter of interest another of the Chef I tutored under used to spray baking spray onto the lid to prevent water droplets.
                       Notes: Kuih is good and soft and if you do it well, you will have honey comb effect :)

                            Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

Chicken Consomme Soup

            Some of you may ask, "What exactly is a Consomme?"  The Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, describes it as a type of clear soup made from richly flavoured stock or bouillon that has been clarified usually from a fining process involving egg protein.  My simple explanation is that  it is a clear broth made from freshly flavoured stock; cooled down completely and then refrigerated and one important note to make is that the stock and the julienne/cut in stripes Should be Cold and the egg Whites acts as a trap to gather all the stuff together and what we are left in the end is a Clear favourful broth.  I did this once after learning it :(  as I have learnt so much that at times it takes a lot of time before I can go full circle but I definitely intent to make this again, just for the sheer "pleasure" of seeing the egg Whites trapping the other ingredients but most of all for the rich flavour of the broth and the next time I think I would either do a Beef or Pork Consomme, xoxo Ophelia

                                 Chicken Consomme Soup

          "A" for making chicken stock

              5             Chicken carcass, chopped
              1             small Chicken Breast
                      Ideally & also to lessen the work load in a day, make this stock the day before then cool completely before putting in the fridge. Put 3.5 litres of water & chicken carcass in a big pot & bring it to a boil then reduce fire to medium & simmer for 2 hours on low - medium fire.  You need a stock of 2.4 litres, if you have excess, Do not throw as can be used for many things. Cool completely, cover it & then refrigerate it overnite.  [Do not put anything else except for the chicken carcass to boil the stock]


                1               *Oignon Brule [see notes below]

             100 gm         Onions, cut             ] this is called
               50 gm          Carrots, cut           ]  "Mirepoix"
               50 gm          Celery, cut            ]  After cutting, cling
               50 gm           Leek, cut             ]  wrap & refrigerate
             690 gm           minced Chicken   [sorry for the odd figure as this is exactly what we learnt]
                 5                 Egg Whites
             170 gm           **Tomato Concasse approximately 3 tomatoes

                 1 sprig        English Parsley               ]"Stardard Sachet d' Epices
                 1 teasp        dried Thyme                    ] French term for "Bag
                 2                 Dried Bay leaf                 ] of Spices & tie same
                 1 Tabsp       Black Pepper, crushed    ] in a muslin/cheesecloth bag

              For garnish:-

              100 gm          Leek, julienne
              100 gm          Carrot, julienne
              100 gm          Celery, julienne
              100 gm          Potatoes, julienne
              100 gm          Chicken breast, shredded [this was boiled together with the carcass for the stock]

                      After cutting the items for garnish.  Cling wrap & put in the fridge.

  1. Beat the egg till frothy.
  2. Combine the Oignon brule, 200 gm of the Mirepoix, the frothy egg whites & mix well.  Add this to the cold stock & bring it to a slow simmer on medium heat.  Stir frequently until a raft forms approximately 5 minutes.  Once it forms into a lump, Do Not stir anymore.
  3. Add in the Standard Sachet d'spice & simmer on low medium fire for 1 1/2 hours until the appropriate flavour is achieved.
  4. Strain - you only need the clear stock & then season with salt & pepper according to your taste.
  5. Add the garnish to the Consomme. 

             (a)  *Oignon Brule is made by removing the skin of an onion then halving it crosswise & charring the cut edge on a flat top of a pan [no oil is used in this process] This is used to color & enrich stock/soup.  Onions contain sugar therefore it chars/burns fast.

                                                            Oignon Brule

             (b)  Mirepoix brings out the aroma & it is for taste.  It is a combination of chopped aromatic vegetable & contains 2 parts onion, one part carrot, one part celery and one part leek to flavour stocks, soup, braises & stews.  The sizes of cut depends on how the mirepoix is to be used.  If it is to be used for long cooking, the veg should be cut more chunky and if used for fast cooking then veg has to be cut smaller :).

              (c)   Tomato Concasse means the skin & seeds are removed from the Tomato.  Tip :- to remove the skin of the tomato easily just make an "x" at the bottom of the tomatoes then put them in boiling water for 30 seconds. Some ppl like yours truly also like to submerge the tomatoes in ice cold water in order to stop the cooking process. You can then remove the skin easily as it would have "flared" out a little from the "x" that was made.  Remove the skin, cut it to remove the seeds.

               Some of you might think that some of my stuff is a little long winded.  I love, to not only type the recipes but I also like to add in the additional notes/info which are not found in the recipe but which are either things I observed at class or when the Chef relates vocally and I will religiously write them down, haha, sometimes in short hand as Chef sometimes speak so quickly and then come home and type the same if possible same day when the things are fresh on my mind and incorporate the tips at the relevant places and most of my observations/notes are highlighted in bold.  I do hope you find them helpful and, lastly, IT would please me if some of you visitors will, not just only look or print these recipes but to also give me comments here in My blog to give me more incentive to type more for you otherwise it is very easy for a person to feel discouraged from doing more.  That is my honest opinion. :) :) :)

                                           Tralallla a raft is formed; encasing the miropiox/veg. 

Yeah, finally I did the Consomme and this time I did my Consomme again.  I strained the Consomme and then added a sprig of fresh Tarragon from my garden and let it infused in the hot liquid. Then you add the garnish & the shredded, cooked Chicken breast.
                             Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

Monday, January 17, 2011

Tuna Pasta Salad

              Another simple & good dish for dinner.  Wei-xun this is also with you in mind :) Ophelia

                                                   Tuna Pasta Salad


              2 cans                 Tuna, chunk flakes in oil
          200 gm                    Spiral Pasta/Fusili [colored]
          100 gm                    Carrots
          100 gm                    Celery, do not blanche
          100 gm                     French Beans
              1                          Big Yellow Onion
              2                          Hard boiled eggs
              2 Tabsp                English Parsley
                                           Mayonnaise to taste
                                           Salt & Pepper to taste
                                            Balsamic Vinegar to taste
                                            Olive Oil to taste

  1. Drain the tuna from the oil, set aside.
  2. Cut the vegetables into bit sizes or sticks & blanche the all veg except the Celery, in hot water till cooked & straight away sieve the veg & submerge in ice cold water to stop cooking process.
  3. Boil alot of water in a big pot.  Add alot of salt [water should taste like sea water.  The pasta will "absorb" just enough salt :) ] Boil the pasta till al dente; pour pasta onto a siever to drain excess water.  Do not submerge the pasta in cold water as you will then remove the starch which allows the other ingredients to combine together.
  4. Combine all the ingredients, except for the boiled eggs, together in a bowl.  Season with mayonnaise, salt, pepper & balsamic vinegar. Mix it well till combined then add in the cut boiled eggs.
  5. Chill the salad before serving.
                 1. Personally, Tuna chunks is better;
                 2. You can also make a basic dressing, for a simple salad, with just balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper
                     & olive oil.

                 Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

Hors d'Oeuvre & Canapes

              I learnt this back in 2000 and are five topping and was something so simple for those of you who want to have a snack or have this for a gathering.  Ophelia

            (1)  Can of Tuna, remove the liquid
                   Freshly ground Black Pepper
                   Spring Onion
                   Chinese Parsley/Yin Sai

            (2)   Smoked Turkey Ham
                    Fresh/canned Peaches, drained/Honey Dew/Melon
                    English Parsley

            (3)   Roasted Chicken Breast         ]
                    Sour Cream                               ] Hawaiian
                    Paprika                                       ] Chicken
                    Canned Pineapples, drained  ]

                    You can either use Roasted Chicken Breast or boil the breast.  If the latter, cool the
                   chicken breast completely before adding the rest of the ingredients.

              (4)  Cheese                                   ]
                     Cherry Tomatoes                   ]
                     Basil                                      ]  Italian
                     Olive Oil                                ]   
                     Pinch of Salt                           ]
                     Freshly ground Black Pepper  ]

              (5)   ripe Avocado                         ]
                      Spring Onion                         ]
                      Lemon juice                           ]
                      Jalapeno                                 ]  Mexican
                      Garlic                                      ]
                      Red Tabasco                         ]
                      Pinch of Salt & Pepper        ]

                The base for the Canapes or Hors d'Ouevre can vary from biscuits to short pastry to bread :)

                        Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

Chicken Ala Kiev

               One might ask "What is Chicken Ala Kiev?"  It is a popular dish of boneless chicken breast & rolled around cold garlic butter with herbs then breaded/coated with flour, eggs & bread crumbs & either fried or baked.  In the following recipe the chicken breast is rolled around cold butter with mushroom & smoked turkey.  You can also substitute the smoked turkey for bacon :) Ophelia

                                               Chicken Ala Kiev


                4                Chicken breast
            250 gm           Salted Butter
            100 gm           Button Mushrooms, diced
            100 gm           Smoked Turkey Ham
                4 cloves      Garlic
             300 ml            *Dairy Whipping Cream eg brands like "Anchor", "Shani", "Embork" etc
                                   Salt & ground Pepper to taste

                                   A packet of mixed Salad

                For coating:-         All purpose flour/tepung gandung, sieved, egg & bread crumbs

  1. Wash chicken breasts, dry well with kitchen towel.  Trim then slice in the centre, [Do not cut till the extreme end] to make a butterfly cut.  Then use a meat hammer & pound it.  Set aside.
  2. Chop the turkey ham & half of the mushrooms.  Heat very little oil & fry the garlic short while, as it burns very fast, then add the turnkey ham, the mushrooms & ground pepper.  Dish out onto plate & let it Cool completely.
  3. Take the butter out from the fridge first & leave it at room temperature for 10 minutes.  Put the butter in Kenwood Machine & use the K beater & manually break up the butter & beat it a short while.  Then add in the cooled Turkey/Mushroom filling & beat again short while [couple of minutes] Effect: Butter is still still a little hard.  Then use a wooden spoon & manually mix it.  End result: butter still a little hard.  Then roll butter into a sausage & cling wrap it & freeze butter.
  4. In the meantime get this ready.  (a)  Heat alot of oil in a wok for deep frying the chicken.  (b) Sieve the flour put it in a small plate, beat the egg & put the bread crumbs in a small plate.  As you have to first coat the chicken breast with flour, then the eggs and lastly the breadcrumbs, arrange them in order near your cooking stove.
  5. Take the butter out from fridge; cut it into big chunks.
  6. Take a piece of chicken breast; put a chunk of the hard butter in the centre.  Fold the breast into a cylinder then pane/coat it first in the flour, eggs then bread crumbs & deep fry Tip:- 1. on medium fire as you dont want the outside to cook faster than the inside. 2. And once the chicken breast are golden brown, increase the fire to high then quickly take them out with a big siever & drain on paper kitchen towel to drain excess oil.  We were taught by the Chef, the rationale is that first fire is high, put in the chicken then lower fire to medium once golden brown increase fire to high then remove as if the fire is high just before removing chicken, it wouldnt absorb so much oil. :)
  7. Now to a simple mushroom sauce.  Saute with a little oil some garlic and the balance of the mushroom. Then add in 300 ml of dairy whipping cream and season the sauce with ground black pepper & a little sauce.
  8. Assembly :- Place some salad on individual plate, place your fried chicken & the mushroom sauce.
             Notes:- There is a difference between *Dairy Whipping Cream & Non Dairy Cream.  Non Dairy is sweet & cannot be used for cooking.  It is for decorating cakes.  And this recipe calls for Dairy Whipping Cream.  :( this info is for those who are new in the "baking & cooking game". 

                            Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia


                Glutinous Rice Layer

                300 gm            Glutinous rice
                200 ml             "Thin" Coconut milk [Mix 50 ml Santan + 150 ml water]
                    1 teasp        Fine Salt
                    1                   Pandan leaf, tied into a knot

                Custard layer

                    8                   Large Pandan leaves, cut into 1 cm lengths
                  80 ml              Water
                   3                    Medium eggs
                150 ml              Santan
                150 gm            Castor Sugar
                    1 Tabsp      Corn Flour
                    1 Tabsp      All Purpose Flour/Tepung Gandung


          1. Wash the Glutinous rice in several changes of water till water tuns clear. 
          2. Cover rice with water & set aside to soak overnight.  After soaking time, rinse & drain rice.
          3. Place the glutinous in a shallow, round cake tin [20 cm across].  Mix the salt and 200 ml "thin" coconut milk & pour this to the glutinous rice.
          4. Bury the knotted & shredded pandan leaf [you shred the pandan leaf, dont shred till the very end of both ends as otherwise you cant knot it :), then knot it as then more aroma is released when shredded :) ] in the glutinous rice & steam it over rapidly boiling water for 20 - 30 minutes until the glutinous rice is cooked ie the grains will no longer have any opaque bits.
          5. Remove pandan leaves & fluff rice with a fork.   Straight away while it is hot, use a folded square of banana leaf [more fragrant] or aluminium foil, press te rice down into the same tin that you steamed it in, in order to form an even, compact layer.  Steam the glutinous rice Again for another 15 minutes.
          6. While the rice is steaming, make the custard layer.  Whiz pandan and water in a blender until fine.  Srain, squeezing the pulp to extract juice.  Double sieve same ie put 2 small hole sieves on top of each other so that you get a cleaner extract.
          7. In a mixing bowl, combine the eggs, 150 ml Santan & sugar together, stirring with a whisk manually gently as you Do Not Want the egg mixture to be Foamy otherwise after steaming you will find small holes.  ADD  the Strained pandan juice, corn flour and plain flour and stir well until mixture is Smooth & free from lumps.
          8. Strain mixture into a metal bowl [use a double boiler if you have] & sit this bowl over a pan of Gentle [ie fire not high] simmering water & STIRRING CONTINUOUSLY  until custard just begins to thicken [to check whether custard is ready use a metal spoon & dip into the custard. Lift spoon up & use your finger to "draw" a line at the back of the spoon.  If there is a smooth, continuous line custard is ready.  This process of cooking the custard is quite fast.
          9. Once the 15 minutes of steaming the glutinous rice is up, pour the custard over the rice & steam over a medium low fire until set about 25 minutes. COOL completely before cutting. If your fire is high, the surface of the Serimuka will not be level; it would be like valley & ridges.

                                (a)  This is good.
                                (b)  Measure everything first, be careful dont mix up the ingredients for the glutinous rice layer and the custard layer.  When measuring, separate the glutinous rice from the custard layers as at times when we are rushing, it is very easy for us to mix things up:)
                                  (c)  It would also be a good idea, after you have measured everything, blend the pandan leaves with the water, sieve same into a small jug [*see my notes about the double sieve above] cling film & put it among the ingredients for the custard layer.
                                  (d)  Timing is crucial here :)

                        Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

          Saturday, January 15, 2011

          The trip home - This is the kind of FAITH we all need

                              For those of you who did not receive this email, read on and see whether you have been touched by it.  For me, I love reading emails and sending it along to help the original sender of the email to reach out and touch more ppl.  Dont even know whether it is just a msg but the immense truth and FAITH behind it leaves me awed and clinging on to my own FAITH in the Lord, who is our Sheperd. Ophelia

                             "A Pastor had been on a long flight between Church conference.  The first warning of the approaching problems came when the sign on the aeroplane flashed on : Fasten your safety belt.   Then after a while, a calm voice said, "We shall not be serving any beverage at this time as we are expecting a little turbulence.  Please be sure that your safety belt has been fasten."

                              As the Pastor looked around it became obvious that many of the passengers were being apprehensive.

                              Later the voice at the intercom said, "We are sorry we are unable to serve the meals at this time.  The turbulence is still ahead of us".

                             Then the storm broke.  The ominous cracks of the thunder could be heard even above the roar of the engines.  Lightening lit up the darkening skies and within moments that great plane was like a cork tossed around on a celestial ocean.  One moment the plane was lifted on terrific currents of air, the next it dropped as if it was about to crash.

                              The Pastor confessed he shared the discomfort and fear of those around him.  He said, "As I looked around the plane, I could see that nearly all the passengers were upset and alarmed.  Some were praying.  The future seemed ominous and many were wondering if they could make through the storm.  Then, suddenly I saw a little girl.  Apparently the storm meant nothing to her.  She had tucked her feet beneath her as she sat on the seat and was reading a book and everything within her small world; was calm and orderly.  Sometimes she closed her eyes then she would read again then she would straighten her legs but worry and fear were not part of her world.  When the plane was being buffeted by the terrible storm, when it lurched this way and that, as it rose and fell with frightening severity, when all the adults were scared half to death that marvelous child was completely composed and unafraid".  The Pastor was completely bewildered.

                              It was not surprising therefore that when the plane reached its destination safely and all the passengers were rushing to disembark, the Pastor lingered to talk to the little girl whom he had watched for a long time.  Having commented about the storm and the behaviour of the plane, he asked the little girl why she was not afraid.  The child replied, "Because my daddy's the pilot and he will take me home safely.  There are many kinds of storm that buffet us.  Financial, Domestic, Mental & Physical and many other storms can easily & quickly darken our skies and, figuratively speaking, thrown our own kind of plane into apparently uncontrollable movements.  We have all known such times and let us be honest and confess, that it is much easier to rest when our feet are on the ground than when we are being tossed about a darken sky.  Let us remember that our Father in Heaven, is the pilot.  HE is in control & taking us home safely, do not worry".

                          Such complete faith & trust coming from a little girl, sometimes puts, most of us to shame as at times, we question OR doubt Our Lord's ability to bring us to safer pasture.  We should always try to remember that Our Lord is in the driver's seat, in a sense, we need not put on our safety belts, as He will Always bring us safely home.  Praise the Lord. Allellulia. Ophelia

                          Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

          Friday, January 14, 2011

          Salt Fish with Brinjals, non halal

                         Another appetising dish from my vast collection of same.  This is a yummilicious dish.  I would suggest you make this dish in the morning for dinner. Then warm it up just before dinner by then all the gorgeous flavours would have infused the meat & brinjals.  I will rate as as 12/10.  When I went for my class, the beautiful aroma floating around the room smelt like heaven to us.  This dish is for keeps.  Enjoy.  As a side note, if you were to ask me, which would I prefer, the Nonya Brinjals which I typed earlier and this. Personally, I would say hands down that the Nonya Brinjals would play second fiddle to this as the smell of this alone can "kill" in a nice sense and then again not to mention the taste :) :) :)  For me, eating this dish, it would seem for a few suspended moments like heaven on earth!!!  Ophelia.

                                                 Salt Fish with Brinjals


                    30 gm          Tanau Salted fish
                  200 gm          Brinjals, wash, sliced & soak in water


                       5                Dried Chillie
                       3                slices Ginger
                      2 sprigs     Spring Onion
                  150 gm           Belly pork
                    50 gm           Carrots


                    1 Tabsp           Oyster Sauce [level tabsp]
                    1 teasp             Castor Sugar
                    1 1/2 Tabsp     Light Soya Sauce
                    1 teasp             Sesame Oil
                    1 Tabsp            Black Soya Sauce
                    1/2 cup             Water
                    1 teasp              Maggi Concentrated Chicken Stock
                    2 Tabsp            Shao Shing Wine

                     Prep work

                         (a)    Soak Tanau Salted Fish for 20 minutes.  Wash & dry.  Put 2 tabsp of oil in a small pan and pan fry till golden.

                         (b)    Dried Chillies. Just wash the dried chillies.  Cut into two, Do Not remove the seeds.  We were told by our Chef that dried chillies that are straight are Not so hot; the curly ones are hot.

                        (c)   Marinade the cut belly pork with some corn flour and a dash of Light Soya Sauce.

          1. Heat 2 Tabsp oil in a pot for about 3 minutes [Point is oil must Not be too hot] add in "B" & stir fry till fragrant.
          2. Add in "C" & bring it to a boil uncovered.  Add in the brinjals & salt fish then cover pot.
          3. After 3 minutes open the lid & give it a stir.  Cover the lid again and cook till brinjals soft.  Once brinjals soft, add in the spring onions give it a stir.
          4. Off the fire & Do not open the lid until you need to warm it up for dinner. :) Enjoy the aroma and taste.
                           Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia

          Baked Tapioca Cake

                       Being away from home esp in a foreign land or when mum's not around, one yearns to eat things that mum used to make or things one can easily find back home and even if we can find same, it is somehow not the same from what mum used to make or from the local fare so much so that sometime when we do find the time, we make it ourselves.  Well this recipe is especially for those times when you may wish to indulgence in a homemade kuih and for those of you, whose mum are not round :( let me be your "substitute" mum in blogsphire for a while, it would be an immense pleasure on my part and may you find something in my blog that your mum may have cooked albeit it may not entirely be the same but at least it is better to have some form of reference :) as sometimes in our everlasting quest to carve a career for ourselves, we tend to forget to minute down mum's signature dishes and I hope that I can be of some aid :) Ophelia

                                                             Baked Tapioca cake


                       2 "A"             *Eggs
                       1 kg                 Tapioca, grated & put on a siever
                  100 gm                 Freshly grated Coconut
                  250 ml                  Fresh Santan OR UHT Coconut milk extract
                  300 gm                Gula Melacca, chopped + 60 ml water boil over low heat
                                                             till dissolved then strain
                     80 ml                Melted Butter
                     60 gm               Tapioca Flour, sieved
                       1 teasp           Baking Powder, sieved
                    1/4 teasp           Fine Salt

                                          (a)  Nett weight of Tapioca, after removing the skin & the thick fibre in the centre is 1 kg.
                                         (b)  After grating the Tapioca, put it on a siever for 2 - 3 hours.  Place it in a bowl and then throw the yellow water but retain the tapioca starch.  Put the tapioca starch in the bowl together with the grated tapioca.

                                           (c) For vistiors in my blog, welcome to my blog, just a note of interest.  Back home in Malaysia our eggs are graded as "AA", "A", "B", "C" & "D".  An "A" egg is approximately 55 ml so for this recipe you need 110 ml eggs.

                                          (d)  Lastly again for the benefit of those overseas, if you do not have Gula Melacca, do not despair, Just Substitute with 180 gm Castor Sugar And OMIT the water & boiling part. 


                      (a)  Prep work :- Grease the sides & bottom of a 9" or 10" square tin, line the base with a grease
                             proof paper & then grease the grease proof paper.

                      (b)  Preheat the oven at 200 degrees Centigrade for 15 minutes.

          1. Beat eggs [and castor sugar if Gula Melacca is omitted] till thick.  Please read carefully and Dont accidentally add castor sugar and gula melacca solution!!! I am just giving you an alternative :)
          2. Add the grated tapioca, grated coconut, santan, gula melacca solution & melted butter, stir.
          3. Add in the sieved tapioca flour, baking powder & fine salt. Stir gently with a spatula till combined.
          4. Pour mixture in the prepared tin.
          5. Bake in the preheated oven at 200 degrees centigrade for 30 minutes.  Then REDUCE temperature to 180 degrees centrigrade and bake for an hour Or till firm in the Centre & brown.
          6. Remove from oven & Cool completely in tin before cutting.

                                   (a)  Do not forget to change the temperature at the time stated above.  TOTAL BAKING TIME approximately 90 minutes.
                                   (b)  If you after baking for 70 minutes that the top is getting too brown [as the temperature of everyone's oven is slightly diff and you have to know your oven well] cover the top with a foil & let the Shinny part of the foil be on top as:-

                                              (i)  Shinny surface of foil REFLECTS heat;
                                             (ii)  Matt surface of foil RETAINS heat.

                                    For me, I always take alot of notes during my class, things that are "silent" in a recipe and can only be gleamed when one pays alot of attention during class and then when I come back, I will type the recipe, with my notes incorporated at the relevant points.  That is why I always TRY to refrain from talking during the demo as sometimes we pay Mega Bucks for the class and if my fellow fren tries to "engage" me in talking, she will find me putting my finger to my point and will Not take offence as she knows that she can get a typed copy of same from me as some of them Do Not seem to appreciate the Value of typing your own notes.  Of course as a curtesy I would give email to them but it would have been better if it was their own notes and not mine as they would probably understand their own notes better And that is why when I am posting all these on my blog, I Also incorporate my notes with the recipe so that you too Would Benefit from same.  Do try them and ppl I would Really Appreciate if you could also give some comments or feed back in my blog as sometimes "One Way Traffic" is rather "Lonely" :(

                                     God bless.  Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia