26 November 2011

Tuna Casserole topped with Crispy Hash Browns

Its coming to the end of November. It's getting colder in the states, hotter in Australia and same ol' humid in Asia. This pronounces holiday season, we would gain a few pounds, know a few more people, learn a few new things and 2011 would pass. 

Having Thanksgiving and Christmas and New Years in mind, I started to crave for Casseroles. Rustic, Sticky Crispy Carbo casseroles. Being too lazy to head out for groceries, I had to think up a way to combine the ingredients at hand. I was recently gifted with some chinese sausages. For those who has no idea what that is, the closest I could describe is a sweet chorizo. I had a spicy can of tuna and handfuls of Macaroni, Spaghetti, Egg Noodles and Hash Browns.
So, here we have, 

19 November 2011

Six Layer Chocolate Rum Cake with Swiss Meringue Rum Buttercream

Have you ever thought of being a little kid again? Where days went by without you worrying about what's going to your hips and thighs. Where running around 5 minutes made you perspire like 45 minutes extreme yoga. Where eating 2 slices of cake was "awww, so cute".

I do. A lot. You would know that exact second when I decide to indulge my inner child. Especially when i proclaim random resolutions like "I ain't sharin' my burger!" or "All meat no vege!" or "I'm eating straight from the pot!" Unfortunately, I kid not.

That's where the 6-layer cake comes in. And the rum...is just to congratulate us for getting over being a 5 year old. The cake I was looking for is a "black" cake. When I was searching for "the" recipe, I go to my favourite cake site and found this. However, things seemed a little too professional. Hence, I went to my new favourite site and found this same recipe. Who could resist challenging themselves, when 2 trusted individuals have tried-tested the recipe. 

13 November 2011

Portuguese Egg Tarts

Don't we always have a reason for choosing what we bake. Especially when your to-bake-list is growing to be as tall as you are. I find myself wanting to bake brownies when I'm feeling down, lemon meringue pies when I'm busy at work, cookies when I'm hungry at work, Hamburgers...possibly any time of the week. Then, there are the miscellaneous items. This one goes to Mr Kelvin. I'm honestly just trying to be funny. At the same time, "Dem! those pictures made me crave for egg tarts!"

Let's cut to the chase. Portuguese egg tarts! I would never have known if it weren't for Auto-correct (Thank you, Steve Jobs) that I have been misspelling Portuguese. First, I must say, I didn't use puff pastry. I used the flaky pastry recipe from this post. Reason: I am not confident enough to make myself some puff, plus, this flaky crust isn't that far apart (aside from the 50+ less layers of happiness).

Second, this egg tart filling recipe is not my own recipe. I found it in a mysteriously secluded website around 3 years ago, when copyrights didn't cost you millions of greens. Unfortunately, the only thing i could remember was that it had an all pink background. However, do not get worked up about it, the recipe  does not differ much from other recipes. You see, custards/ Egg yolk + milk + sugar is bound to taste awesome! 
Lastly, I've baked this a few times too many. However, I've always used a ready-made puff pastry. Hence, for those of you who need to whip up anything quick and impressive, this one goes to you. Remember, the excess egg whites could easily be stored to be used for other cakes such as "Angel food cake, White Eggs cake, Buttercream, etc etc". And if you have extra shells, this is one awesome way to add another dessert to the menu.

09 November 2011

Honey Granola - Request for tips

Need a snack fix and not feel guilty? Garrett popcorns too expensive for you? Cheetos makes your teeth yellow? Here's a quick fix! Granolas. Get it in the oven in 8 minutes tops. Bake for 20 minutes, mix it around, bake for another 20 minutes. Smell that? Yeap, it's done! Take it out from the oven. Let it cool. And you've got your snack and breakfast.

Right at this point, I would like to share with you a happy parcel I received from my mother. (Thanks mom!) I'm nothing but a mere junior at all of this. Hence, when friends asked me how did i manage to produce pretty pictures, I was embarrassed. I look forward to playing around with these new little gems. However, before i begin, I need tips from you (yeah, YOU) pro's! So, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE leave me some tips/ comments on how to improve my pictures or email me or poke me or something. I'll send you a lollipop! 

A few things I can't alter: 
1. Stupid angles where the daylight chooses to shine in my apartment. 
2. My running speed to chase after the ever-so-changing angles of the morning sun.
3. My camera lens.
4. I have no clue on how to use the P's F's V's X's whatever they are :(  (if someone can teach me)
5. My ability to learn no. 4.
6. My ability to annoy people in 5 seconds. (If this matters)

Back to the Granola, this is my second try with Granolas. Unlike the previous "Honey Granola without Honey", I followed the recipe. I would have to admit my previous try was as yummy but less healthy. This tells you... tweak the recipe, heck, re-vamp your own and just play around. 

05 November 2011

Flaky (Almost like Puff Pastry) Apple Pies

After various mishaps in the past, from deep within my stomach, i remind myself "people exaggerate". The most delicious steak is not the "most" delicious steak. The tastiest soup are probably too tasty for human beings. And the most buttery cake would probably be butter itself with a tablespoon of flour. So, as i search for THAT "best apple pie" recipe once again, I had to admit, I was full of doubt and distrust.

I google'd "Flaky pie crust recipe" and when the results popped up, my mind was chanting "people exaggerate, people exaggerate, people exaggerate". I was proven wrong. Aside from the 5% reviews commenting on the difficulty of working with the dough, everyone else described it as the perfect flaky pie crust. The pictures, unfortunately, weren't convincing. I choose to group myself with the unfortunate 5%, and put the recipe aside. 
Boom ba da Boom. Look at how each piece of the crust separates itself from the other? That's "flaky". So, you ask, which recipe did you end up using? Moving on from that recipe, I went on to search more "pie crust" tips. I ended up clicking to my all time favourite food blogger, Smitten Kitchen's Pie Crust Tips and remember her cute little apple pie cookies? Coincidentally, that was the same pie crust recipe!
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