Friday, February 3, 2012

Chinese New Year Cookies Galore

Hello! It's been some time since I've updated this blog. I've been away to my Hubby's hometown to celebrate the Chinese New Year festival with my in laws. It was good catching up with family members, old and new. Now that the celebrations are over and I'm back to my usual routine ....and also couple pounds heavier, I'm happy to have finally found some time to blog again. 

Here are some pics of the Chinese New Year cookies I've made.

I was going to pass making pineapple tarts this year but a trip to the market changed my mind. Pineapples were just so abundant and very fresh. Besides, Chinese New Year just wouldn't feel complete without some homemade pineapple tarts. I tried out a new pineapple tart pastry recipe from an old magazine and I'm happy to say I found THE one! For now that is. Until I find a better one, this recipe is what I'll be sticking to.  I like how the texture of the pastry is very short, buttery and milky tasting. It didn't leave that awful floury aftertaste like other recipes I've tried.  I suspect cornflour might be the culprit. This because all the recipes which had the floury taste had cornflour. Just my thought. What do you think?

Pineapple Tarts

180g unsalted butter, softened
70g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla
300g all purpose flour
50g milk powder
1 tsp salt
1 egg
1 egg, beaten for egg wash

Pineapple Jam Filling:
Recipe here

1) Beat butter, sugar, salt and vanilla extract until fluffy and light. Sist the flour and milk powder together, and stir into the creamed butter. Add in beaten egg, mix until dough comes together. Cover with cling wrap and chill in the fridge for 2 hours until the dough is firm.
2) Preheat oven 170C. Divide into balls and wrap in the pineapple filling. Roll into balls and insert a clove on top each balls. Brush with beaten egg.
3) Bake 15 minutes or until pastry is golden brown. Cool completely and store in airtight container.

Note: I was too lazy to  make balls and made rolls instead. I made a couple pieces of balls and they were really good, better than the rolled ones I must say.  I like how the pastry is nice and thin and evenly distributed, enrobing the pineapple filling. Make the balls if you're not lazy. It's worth the effort.

Utterly rich and artery busting, not for the health conscious! Hence, this is only a once-a-year affair. My Daughter G absolutely loves these balls.

Crispy crunchy Walnut Cookies
Recipe here.
Added chopped walnuts instead of almond.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Festive Year End 2011

Wow, it's 2012 already!!! Where have I been? This past few weeks had been a blur. There were just so many things to do with the year end festivities. I had been busy baking up a storm for friends and family and squeezing in last minute Christmas shopping. And with the starting of the new school term, more shopping for school supplies ans stuffs for my Daughter G. My Daughter G is now a secondary school student.  I can't believe I'm now a mother of a teenage girl! Between all that and the running of errands and chores, Chinese New Year is now upon us! Phew, how time just zipped by! Anyway, here are a few pics of the Christmas celebration and some of the bakes I made.

The Christmas dinner we stuffed our face with. Mom's obligatory roast turkey. Christmas is just not christmas without a turkey. Juicy, moist and utterly flavourful and delicious. Turkey aside, Mom also made buttered brussel sprouts and carrots with bacon bits. The rest of the dishes were made by me. Salmon wreath, roast potatoes and yule log cake.

Smoked salmon wreath with cream cheese and herbs filling inside. Inspired from a dish featured in the Good Housekeeping Magazine Christmas Collection 2011 edition.

My first ever yule log cake. It's pretty easy to make. Just a swiss roll with whipped cream filling and chocolate ganache frosting.

Mincemeat apple tart.

Chocolate cake

Mango Yoghurt Cake.


Mom's birthday on boxing day. I made a simple sponge cake with whipped cream and mango filling with fresh strawberries on top.


Vanilla cupcakes with vanilla swiss meringue buttercream.

We celebrated the new year with Durian Mousse Cake. Durians are seasonal and crazy expensive and this is a luxurious treat.  This is also the first durian cake I've ever made. I know it's very late, but here's wishing all a Happy and Blessed New Year!  

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