Thursday, October 27, 2011

1st Anniversary Giveaway Winner!

Thank you to everyone who entered!

Here's the list of participants, numbered according to the date of his/her comment.

1) Janine
2) Small Small Baker
3) Hanushi
4) Lena
5) Yummy Bakes
6) Swee San
7) Anne
8) bebecrebecca
9) Alice Tai
10) Jamie
11) Mixue
12) DG
13) Janice
14) Jess
15) Kayleen
16) Adeline
17) Christine T
18) lvweichin
19) Edith

And the winner is ......



Alice Tai!

You are now the proud owner of this Silicone Madeleine Pan! :)

I'll be emailing you soon!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Bingka Keladi (Baked Yam Kuih)

Besides being steamed, kuehs also come in baked form. Like this Bingka Keladi I made the other day. It was very dense, a little sticky, a little chewy just like any steamed kueh except it had drier outer crust. It looked plain & boring and rather unattractive compared to other colourful kuehs, but really looks can be deceiving.  It was very fragrant and had a prominent coconut and yam taste. It almost felt like I was eating mashed yam in compacted form! This kueh was quite addictive too. Before I knew it, I had eaten almost half the cake!

Bingka Keladi (Baked Yam Kuih)
(Recipe adapted from here)

  • 3 eggs
  • 3 cups coconut milk
  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 2 Tbs butter
  • 2 cups yam (steamed or boiled, drained, then mashed)
  • 1 tsp purple colouring  (optional)
  • sesame seeds for sprinkling on top

  1. Preheat oven at 200C. Grease a 9 inch square pan  with butter and preheat in the oven for a while.
  2. Using a blender or food processor, blend all ingredients together till smooth and combined. Do this in batches if  you can't fit everything all at once. Batter will be quite thin & runny. 
  3. Add purple colouring and mix til coloring is well combined.
  4. Pour batter into preheated pan. Sprinkle sesame seeds evenly on top.
  5. Bake for about 1 hour, using both top and bottom heat. If you like crusty top, bake further for 10 minutes using top heat only.
  6. Onced baked, remove from oven and leave to cool completely before cutting.

I'm submitting this post to Aspiring Bakers #12: Traditional Kueh (October 2011) hosted by SSB of Small Small Baker.
Made any kuehs lately? Do join in the fun too.

    Saturday, October 22, 2011

    Pumpkin Huat Kueh

    HUATT ARR!!!
    (meaning PROSPER in Chinese)

    This was what I was greeted with when I lifted the lid from my steamer.....


    Puffy, Voluptuous, Wide Smiling Huat Kuehs.

    This made me grinning from ear to ear. The Huat Kuehs had 'prospered' .... this mean I'm going to have good fortune in the coming days.  Hehehe.

    This recipe from Cherry's Kitchen here is easy and quick to prepare. I made these in just an hour, including proofing the starter dough and steaming & mashing the pumpkin. If I may say so, this is a failproof recipe, because I had missed a step - which was to proof the Kuehs for 10 minutes before steaming. Still they rose and cracked beautifully.

    HUATT ARR!!!

    Pumpkin Huat Kueh
    (Recipe adapted from Cherry's Kitchen here )


    50g Plain flour
    Water 50g
    1 tsp Yeast
    200g Pumpkin (steamed, then mashed),
    100g Coconut milk
    50g Water
    140g Gula melaka (Palm Sugar)
    1 Egg
    320g Plain flour
    2 tsp Double acting baking powder

    1. Mix together plain flour, water and yeast. Leave aside for ½ hr until the dough has proofed.
    2. In a blender, combine pumpkin, coconut milk, water, gula melaka and egg together.
    3. Pour pumpkin mixture into a large mixing bowl. Sift in plain flour and double acting baking powder. Then add in the proofed starter dough and mix evenly. You'll get thick wet gooey mixture. 
    4. Pour mixture over cups until almost to the top. Dip a knife in oil and make a deep “X” across the batter in each cup. Leave aside to proof for 10 minutes.
    5. Steam over high heat for 15 minutes. Do not peak/remove lid while steaming.

    • I made half the recipe and got  6 Huat Kuehs using medium sized muffin cups.
    • You may use Hong Kong flour or cake flour for a softer finer textured Huat Kuehs.

    I'm submitting this post to Aspiring Bakers #12: Traditional Kueh (October 2011) hosted by SSB of Small Small Baker

      Tuesday, October 18, 2011

      Yam/Taro Ondeh Ondeh

      Ondeh Ondeh is one of my favourite kuehs. I love the oozy syrupy  palm sugar filling encased in the soft yet slightly chewy glutinous ball accompanied by the salty sweet taste of grated coconut. But what I love most is the experience of eating it. You see, eating Ondeh Ondeh is a messy affair.  You cannot be demure and take dainty bites. Unless if you don't mind sticky syrup sputtering all over  your clothes and whatever that is near you. 
      Forget about being lady like. To eat one, you have to open your mouth wide, pop the whole ball into your mouth and close your mouth tightly. Bite into it and savour the the sweet filling bursting out!  This is the best part and I must say, an absolute joy! I'm sure you all agree with me too. :)

      Here's my first ever batch of Ondeh Ondeh. Have always wanted to make my own but just never did as I've always thought it involves a lot of work. And it does! ... at least to me. What I find hard is filling the glutinous balls neatly. My hands and fingers are just not deft or nimble enough. It took me more than 1 hour just filling the balls alone. I'd suggest making these when you have someone to help you.  The more the merrier. Anyway, for all the hard work I've put in, I was well rewarded in the end when I pop one Ondeh into my mouth, then another and another .... and another. Yup, I had a gorge fest. Haha!  
      As for the recipe, I adapted from the cookbook 'Delicious Kueh & Desserts' by Patricia Lee. I have made a little substitution by using yam in place of the sweet potatoes called for and omitted the coloring.  The green tint you see came from the pandan juice. And if you're wondering, the yam taste was not prominent at all. I couldn't taste any yam flavour under all that fragrant pandan and coconut. I've also found the amount of palm sugar called for was not enough to fill the dough balls. To get that oozy filling that'll sputter when you bite, you have to be very generous with the filling!

      I'm submitting this post to Aspiring Bakers #12: Traditional Kueh (October 2011) hosted by SSB of Small Small Baker

      Yam/Taro Ondeh Ondeh
      (Recipe adapted from 'Delicious Nyonya Kueh & Desserts' cookbook by Patricia Lee)


      300 g Glutinous rice flour
      2 tbs Tapioca flour
      200 g  Mashed Yam/Taro
      10 Pandan Leaves
      200 ml Water
      a pinch of salt
      100 g Palm sugar (grated and mixed with 1 tbsp castor sugar)
      250 g grated white coconut
      a pinch of salt
      additional water, if dough is dry
      1. Mix grated white coconut with a pinch of salt, then steam on 2 pieces of pandan leaves for 10 minutes. Leave to cool.
      2. Cut the remaining 8 pandan leaves into smaller pieces, put into a blender together with the water. Blend, then strain. Add salt. Mix well. 
      3. In a large bowl mix together glutinous rice flour and tapioca flour.  Add in mashed yam. Pour in pandan juice and knead till dough is smooth and pliable like playdoh. If dough is too dry, slowly add more water into it, a tablespoon at a time.
      4. Pinch a small lump of dough, roll into a ball and flatten slightly. Put a little palm sugar at the centre. Seal well and roll into smooth ball again.  
      5. Bring a pot of water to the boil. Gently drop the filled dough balls into it. When the balls  float to the surface, keep boiling for another 2 minutes. Scoop up with a strainer and coat in  grated coconut. Serve.

      1. Original recipe calls for sweet potatoes and a few drops green food colouring. As I used yam and my dough was very dry, I had added more water, a tablespoon at a time until I got smooth pliable dough.
      2. The Ondeh Ondeh is best eaten on the day it is made. If  you have leftovers, store them in the fridge. Refrigeration though makes the Ondeh Ondeh tough. Reheat in the steamer for a few minutes before eating. They'll be nice & soft again. 


      Friday, October 14, 2011

      Mad about Madeleines! ...and Giveaway Update

      My friends, madeleines are what you'll be madly baking if u happen to be the lucky recipient of my blog's 1st anniversary giveaway!

      Yup, I'm giving away a silicone madeleine pan! :). 

      Thanks for all the comments I've received thus far. I'm a little embarassed and also sad to say I'm ditching my original plan of awarding the gift to the person who dropped in the 50th comment. Honestly, I just can't wait anymore. I want to send out this silicone madeleine pan to the lucky recipient ASAP :).  I've given this giveaway a rethought and now I think using an online random number generator is the best solution to pick the winner for the giveaway. For those who have left comments in my previous post here, don't worry, you are still eligible to win the gift :)

      Anyone who is interested to participate in this giveaway, please leave your comments in this post or my previous post  here  by the 23rd October 2011. Please include your email address in your comments so that I can contact you should you be the lucky winner. I will announce the winner within a week after the deadline.

      Good luck! :)

      Tuesday, October 4, 2011

      1st Anniversary .... and a Giveaway!

      OMG! Happy 1st Birthday to my blog Sotong Cooks! How time flies and I very nearly forgot about it until I saw a post on a fellow blogger's blog anniversary. I just made it in time! It has been exactly one year since I posted my very first entry. I still remember the feeling of excitement and hesitation when I first pressed the submit button - which was a post on Nigella's Brownies.

      Over the past one year, I've dicovered many incredible talented bloggers, kept my hands full with new recipes  and also learnt some nifty culinary tips & tricks. Not only that, blogging has also spark an interest in food styling & photography. Stuffs like aperture or 'bokeh' would've been so alien to me a year ago. Now when I go shopping, I'm more interested in tablewares and kitchenwares and whatever props that I could use for food styling. Gone are the days of shoes, clothes and bags! LOL 

      On this day, I wish to thank all my fellow blogger friends as well as readers who has been following and encouraging me. Thank you for all your support, kind words and compliments. I appreciate it very much! Your words of advise, comments and feedbacks whether positive or negative are always welcome as they help me to learn and improve my knowledge. Sharing is caring :)

      As a token of appreciation I would like to give away a small gift. Here how it goes. The person who drop in the 50th comment in this post will 'win' the gift. In your comment, you must include your email and a link to your blog (if u have) and complete this sentence "I like Sotong Cooks because ____________" .  You can leave as many comments as you like. Everyone is welcome to join. The giveaway ends when I receive the 50th comment! :) I will reveal the gift in time to come.  Keep your comments coming! :)

      UPDATE (14th October 2011): I've now decided to use online random number generator to pick the lucky winner. Anyone who is interested to participate in this giveaway, please leave your comments and email by the 23rd October 2011.

      Sunday, October 2, 2011

      Carrot Cupcakes

      Sometimes I can be a little mad, obsessed even. You see, I've been on a quest to find the perfect carrot cake recipe for the longest time and this particular carrot cake recipe, I've made it not once, not twice but three times!

      The first time, I made it into cupcakes, I was quite happy with the result but thought they were a little too oily  and the spice were a little much. The second time round, I reduced the oil and adjusted the spice flavouring, the texture came out a little dry. Not wanting to give up, I gave it a go again. This time keeping the original amount of oil and adjusting the spice only, and instead of cupcakes I made a 2 layer 8 inch round cake. Though the flavour was good, it was a little dry. *Sigh* 

      Alas this recipe was not meant to be all I'd hope for. Maybe I'm just too fussy. A perfectionist, maybe. Will I ever find that darn perfect carrot cake recipe? All I'm looking for is a carrot cake loaded with carrots which is not too spicy, not too sweet, not too oily, does not reek of bicarb, not too dense and most importantly moist but not overly wet. Am I asking too much? LOL.

      Even though this carrot cake may not be the holy grail of carrot cakes in my book, but you know what I'd still give this recipe a go, but in cupcake form only. It seems to have the best texture this way. 

      P/S - The cream cheese frosting from Martha Stewart was perfect. Creamy and just the right level of sweetness.

      Carrot Cake
      (adapted from Cake Mistress here)

      1 cup Brown Sugar (about 150g)
      1 cup Vegetable Oil
      3 Large Eggs
      Pinch Salt
      1/2 teaspoon Bicarb of Soda
      2 cups Self Raising Flour (240g)
      2 cups finely grated Carrot (200g)
      1/2 cup Walnuts, finely chopped (about 50g)
      3/4 teaspoon Cinnamon
      3/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
      1 teaspoon vanilla extract

      Cream Cheese Frosting
      (adapted from Martha Stewart here)

      250g cream cheese, room temperature
      115g unsalted butter, cut into pieces, room temperature
      125g confectioners' sugar
      1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
      zest of 1 orange, finely grated


      To make cake:

      1) Heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
      2) Beat sugar and oil until thick, then add 1 egg at a time and keep beating for a few more minutes.
      3) Add salt, bicarb soda, carrots, flour, walnuts and spices. Mix with wooden spoon until all combined.
      4) Pour batter evenly between cupcake pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until light golden and cake springs back when touched in the middle. Baking time might vary depending on your personal oven.

      To make frosting: 
      Place butter and cream cheese in a mixing bowl. Beat until smooth and well blended. Sift in confectioners' sugar, and gradually beat until smooth. Add vanilla and orange zest, stir to combine.
      Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...