Wednesday, November 29, 2006

trolley full of junk food

My food trolley full of junk food and snacks have been my companion for the pass 6 weeks of working (my stomach off) like a crazy computer scientist. I didn't have time for proper meals and sleep =( I'll be working every few hours in the wee mornings and then every few hours here and there. But all is back to normal now, but still a little busy settling back down to my normal non-vampire working hours.

I put on weight again lo... with all this junk food, who won't?!



I have my crunchy Roti Kok (double baked bread) on the right. The long fragrant butter bread stick is really nice when dipped into warm coffee or tea. On the top is the "cake kok" or double baked butter pound cake. The brown bigger piece is is the chocolate wafer biscuit. The outer layer is a thick, crunchy and course layer of baked flour. On the inside, a chocolate flavored wafer biscuit with cream. Slurpppp.

Not forgetting my double chocolate chipsmore! and almond raisin cookie!

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Monday, November 27, 2006

Christmas fruit cake

HOHOHO Merry Christmas! LOL.. well not yet but it's almost time to bake that Christmas cake.


My cakes don't look pretty this year because I rushed baking the cakes. I didn't have time to decorate for the first batch of cakes and just kasi hentam for the next batch. I have to bake a few batch and age for at least a week. Mom wants to give them away during my uncle's wedding this weekend.

I'm only going to see my cakes for a week!

I don't really agree with my mom actually. My cakes are not old enough. Sure not nice one... my relatives won't enjoy it one la :~(


But anyway I have no choice. So bake some Christmas fruit muffins and age them lo. The muffins are smaller so easier for the Rum to soak in.

Ingredients:
350g butter, in room temperature
250g fine brown sugar
350g flour, shifted
1 1/2 tsp Cinnamon power
1/2 nutmeg powder
1 tsp baking power
7 eggs

Ingredients A:
120g flour
1150g mix fruit, pre soaked in Rum

Method:
1. Shift flour, Cinnamon and baking powder together. Add nutmeg.
2. Beat butter and sugar until fluffy.
3. Beat in egg one by one. When all eggs are added, beat in high speed for about 20 seconds.
4. Bear in flour bit by bit, scraping down the edges after every addition. Leave aside
5. With your hands, mix A. Make sure the flour covers the surface of all the fruits. Add more flour if needed.
6. Fold in fruits into flour mixture.
7. Scoop flour mixture into disposable aluminum trays. Decorate the top with fruits and nuts.
8. Bake for 20 minutes at 180C, then 55 minutes at 160C. Let to cool before refrigerating.

Aging the cake
1. Very 2 days, remove the cake from the fridge and brush with Rum. Let to soak for 15 minutes.
2. Bake for 10 minutes at 180C in a preheated oven. Let to cool before refrigerating.
3. Continue to age for 4 to 8 weeks.
4. To serve, slice in cake about 3/4 cm thick. Nice eaten cold or warm (heat with microwave in medium heat)

Remember, this recipe works only if you plan to age the cake. The cake will look dry and compact when initially baked. But you will need that texture. When the Rum soaks in, it will moisten the cake. The compact cake will not let the cake crumble when you slice it later. If you are just planning to bake a normal fruit cake, use less flour, butter and add baking soda.

Also see soaking fruits.

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Sunday, November 26, 2006

Busy busy busy

Sorry about the lack of food entries lately. Really busyyy...





At least still related to food a bit? hehehe

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Thursday, November 23, 2006

Zuup cafe

I was hanging around 1 Utama when Zuup Cafe pop in front of me ;P I remember there were many good reviews about this place, one which was done by Babe_kl. Since I had nothing to do, I decided to have something there.


Zuup Cafe

I was suppressed surprised when I was seated in an inner room! Really nice and I really didn't think this room existed if I was not brought inside.




This is actually that smaller more private room from the outside. Really nice place to have private dinners. The room can fit about a dozen people comfortably.

I want to order the soups but I was kind of full that time. Plus… I was really tempted to try their cakes. I was drooling when I saw the display out front.


I ordered an Italian Cheery something… Italian Cheery Delight.. or rainbow… I forgot what it is called but sounds wonderful hehehe. Taste was ok. It wasn’t too sweet like the rest of the cakes, and there were 2 big cherries in my slice of cake. The deco was plus plus too.

And before I forget, service at Zuup Café is a PLUS PLUS too!!! Very good service!


To go with the cake, I ordered a Caramel Latte. One word, WONDERFUL! Best latte ever! Very smooth. The mixture of coffee, caramel and milk is just at the right portion.

I will definitely go back to Zuup for any other occasions. The small room is really great for small private birthday dinner actually. Just you can a dozen of your good friends having a good dinner. Nice… don’t you think?

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Tuesday, November 21, 2006

de-stress

Work is really taking up all my time!!! AHHHHHH! Thank god food is always here for some de-stress!


Too bad but you are going into my mouth!!


Kutuuuuu AHHHH! Kind of spoils the appetite hehehe


Uno Stako. Losers get to eat MUAHAHAHA


Reminds me of…. Well… never mind.


Zzzzzzz


Did you know you can reuse your teabags for facial? Places the teabags on the eyes to replace the cucumber. It helps with eye bags too!

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Sunday, November 19, 2006

Kau Choy pancake

I think it's been more than 10 years since I ate kau choy pancake. My mom used to make them very often when I was young. I remember when me and my brother will wake up on Sunday mornings, brush our teeth and sit in front of the television to watch cartoons. We seldom leave the televioin alone unless it is for good reasons. And kau choy pancak is one good reason.


I'm not sure if all mommies make these kau choy pancake but their kids are missing out a lot of their mommies don't make them some. The pancake have a Taiwaniese pizza (the one sold in the SS2 pasar malam on a van stall) feel to it but with less oil. The pancake is soft pancake like in the center but have chrispy sides. My mom stopped making them when she found out that my dad as actually allergic to it. Took her a really long time to figure that out.

Mom made then recently when my dad was not in for breakfast. Hehehe totally missed the pancake!!!

Ingredients:
- flour
- water
- sugar
- salt
- kau choy, chopped
- heh bee, blended or pounded

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Friday, November 17, 2006

Ampang Foong Foong Yong Tau Foo

When I was really young, when it takes over an hour from PJ to Ampang, when the road were narrow and full of port holes, my dad loved to bring my family for Ampang yong tau foo.


Everthing my grandparents comes over, he will drive all of us to Foong Foong in Ampang to have the famous yong tau foo.

You will have to order that the counter, tell them how many pieces of what yong tau foo pieces you want. You will be seated and then your glass of leong char (herbal tea) will arrive. The over the microphone or loud speaker, you can hear something like "Sam sat yat hou, sap kin tofu, yee sap kin chau yeah cham cham, yat woun sui kau..." (Table 31, 10 pieces tofu, 20 pieces mixed fired stuff, 1 bowl of soup dumplings...) being shouted. You will know that your orders made through and you food will be arriving in a few minutes.


But all that is a really long time ago. I have visited Foong Foong for a few times recently and noticed that their yong tou foo no longer give me the kick. The once original Ampang yong tofu that is the talk of the town is no longer watering my taste buds. The yoong tau foo at O&S is way better.

Another good example of, "Original doesn't mean always the best".

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Thursday, November 16, 2006

Biscuit city

I'm really tied up with work lately... so bare with me if the posts are a little boring.

"Created by Chinese artist Song Dong in the basement of London Selfridges.
72,000 biscuits were used in total to construct the 'Biscuit city' including Chocolate Digestives, Rich Tea, HobNobs and Fruit Shortcakes.
The 'biscuit city' is being offered to shoppers accompanied with a cup of tea!"

























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Monday, November 13, 2006

Vegetarian food

When I have vegetarian food, I always wonder who actually come out with all this dishes. Born vegetarians obviously have not taste meat before, hence I don't think they are the once who created the vegetarian roasted duck, the char siew, fried fish, rendang beef and etc. So the creators surely must be vegetarian converts, or just chefs and cooks eat both meat and vegetables right?

I know a few vegetarian friends, and have a few vegetarian relatives. I have always been eating various types of vegetarian food from vegetarian burgers, steaks to fired fish, squid even eel sushi! It's just too bad I missed out on a vegetarian wedding dinner last month due to work. I haven't been to one in my life.

Anyway, 2 vegetarian dishes below to share with vegetarians or meat eaters.


This is a simple stir fry mixed vegetables dish. The vegetables can all be boiled first, then fired with some bean curd. Vegetables for this dish consist of ginkgo, celery, red capsicum, carrots, broccoli and mushroom. You can slice the broccoli stem and cook them as well. They can be eaten, actually my most favourite part as the stem is very sweet.


This is a simple mushroom ginger chilli dish with cashew nuts fried with light and thick soya sauce. The key to this dish is actually how the Chinese mushrooms are cut. Chinese mushrooms are usually sliced into strips or half’s or eaten whole. Most of the time the mushrooms are soft.

For this dish, remove the stem and soak the dried Chinese mushrooms in warm water for 15 minutes until soft. Using a pair of kitchen scissors, cut the mushrooms from outside, into spirals, forming a spring out of the mushrooms. About 1/3 cm in width. So instead of strips from a mushroom, you'll get a strip of mushroom. Use a paper towel to drain all the water from the mushroom, or leave them out to dry (in the kitchen will do, not under the sun). Use all the above ingredients to fry with the mushrooms.

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Friday, November 10, 2006

Moldy bread

An article on The Star during the Raya week got me thinking about the preservatives in our food products. The article reported that a number (and I think a big number) of Raya biscuits brands have preservative higher that the permitted amount by the government.

I do agree because I have come across food stuff that have ridicules length of shelf life. Canned food can last for a few years is understandable but ice cream drumsticks bought today can last until 2008?! That's really really scary!

Being all gross and freaked out on this preservative issue, I did an experiment using bread.

I took a piece of white bread and whole meal bread and separated them in to different plastic bags. I noted down their expiry date. The white bread moulded a day after it expired (I believe that's about 5 to 6 days from the day it's baked?). The whole meal bread did not start to mould until the 4th day!

I freaked a little because my family take wholemeal bread and not white bread. Does this means there's more preservatives in the wholemeal bread? Or wholemeal with the fibber and all just last longer?

I experimented a bit further by baking my own wholemeal bread. Guess what... the bread started to mould on the third day. Really big difference!



Now the question is, does my internal organs and all preserve better by eating so much of all this preservative?.... ok not funny, but something to ponder upon.

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Tuesday, November 07, 2006

first carbonara timer

Hm... still need the cream to really work that carbonara.

I love bacon carbonara with large macaronies as pasta. I only knew how to place an order and then eat. But for the pass few years, I have been watching chefs on TV and in the kitchen cooking up creamy yummy carbonara.

I had a whole carton of milk the other day and was wondering what I could do with it. I missed eating pasta so I decided to cook carbonara (though I didn't have cream that time). The carbonara was still edible... but lots of room for improvement.


I boiled spinach and pureed it and mixed it with the sauce, that is why the sauce look a little green. I wanted to make pesto (also greenish in colour), but my sis hates basil :(

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Sunday, November 05, 2006

Square watermellons



When the Japanese ate the watermelon, they ate, then they thought, "Wouldn't it be easier to keep the watermelon in the fridge is it was square?"
Japanese mothers thought "Watermelons taste better when it is served cold, if only they were smaller and square, then I can fit them into my fridge"

Japanese scientist actually grew square watermelons in their labs and it the melons were actually mass grown in a watermelon farm. The water melons are not genetically engineered to grow in to squares is you are wondering hehehe.

When the melon flower turn into fruit, the small growing fruit is placed into a square glass. While the melon grow, it will fill up the space in the glass. So instead of growing in all 360 direction, it will just grow to where the lets them grow.

When the melons were sold in the Japanese market, it caught the world’s attention. I wish they grew square melons in Malaysia too. I'm not sure if they still grow them in Japan. The costs of growing square melons are much costlier. Japanese were happy they the melons were square, but weren't happy with the price.

I wonder if we can replace the glass with bio degradable square bags... it still gives the air circulation to the melons and still shapes the melon into squares. ...or will the bad break? Hm....

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Saturday, November 04, 2006

Soaking fruit

It's November already! That means PARTY MONTH DECEMBER is coming! And Christmas! Thank god I don't have to do extra 24/7 on call duties during that month. WEEE!!

Anyway, I have already started prepating for the Christmas celebration. A bit early you say? No la... not when it comes to a baking a good christmas cake. I have already stared to soak my fruits in Rum for my cake.



Let's see what I have
Layer 1: Green and red cherries
Layer 2: Crystallized ginger
Layer 3: Sultanas
Layer 4: Black raisins
Layer 5: Yellow raisins
Layer 6: Orange peel
And Rum

Actually, you don't soak fruits like that. Hehehe the layers are just for illustration. You will have to use a dry wooden spoon to mix all that up when you pour your rum in. Keep in a cool dry place out of the sun. Shake the bottle every day to make sure all the fruits are moist with rum. I used about 600ml of Rum to soak, you can use less or more depending on how much Rum you want in it.

I can’t really remember how many kilograms of fruits I have soaked, but here’s how to formulate the taste. Cherries are sweet, ginger is sweet but gives out a hint or spicy mint flavor. Sultanas are sweet, raisins sweet and sour. Orange peel have a citrus sourish flavor to it. By knowing the sweetness and the sourness and the other smells and taste of the fruits, you will have to mix a portion of sweet + sweet sour > sour. Meaning that you should have more sweetness in your fruits than sour.

Am I making any sense? I think you will have your taste buds do the work.

Something to remember, when the fruit cake is baked (heated), the alcohol smell, taste and effect will be gone. What you will taste is the sweetness of the Rum. So if you are afraid you'll drunken your guest with cake.. you won't. It's ok to pure more Rum in. All of it won't absorb in the fruits but you can use the extras to age your fruit cake later.

So go soak your fruit first, wait for December then bake the cake.

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Thursday, November 02, 2006

starbucks

Nope, I'm not a Starbucks addict but I thought it was interesting to share the this. I didn't know the first original Starbucks logo had boobies!







Oh, I totally love their New York cheese cake!!!

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Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Old Town cafe

There's so many "modern" coffee shop these days that are popping u every where in town and supermarkets. I recently visited the Old Town Cafe in Jaya Jusco near Equine Park Puchong.




Anyone who loves drinking white coffee will know that the this milky fragrant black coffee originated from Old Town, Ipoh. There are many brands in the supermarket selling white coffee but the really good ones come from Old Town itself. This cup of white coffee, taste exactly like the one in the coffee shop in Old Town, Ipoh.


Kopi O also known as plain black coffee without the milk. Taste like coffee lah.


Xi mut milk tea. Xi mut is actually a smooth and fine cotton cloth. This cloth is used as a strainer when making the tea. The tea will h\be strained though this Xi mut for at least 7 times before the tea can be served. Taste really good, and really really smooth.

The orange juice on the right is a little diluted. Need more juice, not water. Or maybe just too much ice.


I was a little disappointed with the kaya and butter toast. I was expecting the Ipoh coffee shop style toasted hotel bread but this was toasted sandwich bread.


I waited a really long time for a simple half boiled egg. Added some soya sauce and pepper, mix it a little, taste good when I dip my toast into it.


The chicken rendang rice was very disappointing. The sambal was sweet, way too sweet and not spicy at all. The chicken rendang from a can taste better that the one served. Does Ipoh chicken rendang taste like that? eek!


One of the worst (Ipoh) chicken sar hor fun I have tasted. I have tasted real orginal Ipoh sar hor fun in KL and they even use beansprout from Ipoh. Everything in this cafe is not Ipohish at all except for the white coffee.

And if you are wondering "Teckiee must be crazy, how would she know if the beansprout is from Ipoh or not?!" Well I tell you, you can tell if you have eaten good delicious beansprout dishes from Ipoh. The beansprout in Ipoh are plum, stumpy and fat. When eaten, it is more crunchy. That is why the Ipoh beansprout chicken dish (Ipoh Ngar Choy Kai) is so famous. The key is using Ipog beansprout.


The curry mee wasn't that superb. It did have the Ipoh taste in it as the curry had little coconut milk.

Skip the nissin noodle with egg, luncheon meat and vegetable, you can find better Hongkie style noodles like this in Kim Gary, Wong Kok Char Chan Teng, or any of this famous Hongkie fusion cafe that are popping up every where too.

Go to Hainan, China to eat their Hainan fish rice but never in Old Town cafe. The plate was left untouched.

Other that the curry mee, the kaya glutinous rice is maybe the only other thing that tastes ok. I don't think this is an Ipoh dish but the rice came cold with hot creamy fragrant coconut kaya. The kaya would be nicer if it was a little smoother.

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