Sunday, 27 March 2016

Hot Cross Buns

Today is Easter Sunday. I remember I saw this recipe in Alex Goh cookbook The World of Bread and decided to try making them.

I kneaded the dough by hand. These turned out quite soft.

I replaced the the raisins n mixed peel with a handful of dried cranberries instead.

ingredients A
250 gm bread flour
35 gm sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tbsp milk powder
1/8 tsp cinnamon powder
2 tsps instant yeast 

Ingredients B
1 egg
100 ml cold milk

Ingredients C
25 gm unsalted butter softened 

Ingredients  D
70 gm raisins 
30 gm mixed peel 

I replaced with only 40 gm dried cranberries cut into smaller pcs

Topping paste to make the X
50 gm plain flour mixed with 1 tbsp oil and 60 ml water

Mix ingredients A together in a bowl - I used a whisk
Add in B n mix to form a dough 
Then I took it out n placed on my mat
I added in part C butter
Knead till no longer so sticky about 10 mins
Add in cranberries and mix in.
Shape into a ball n use the bowl to cover.
Proof for 45 minutes.
Then mould dough into 4 balls n rest for 15 mins. I used the bowl to cover.
Prepare baking tray with baking paper.
I used 2 trays 
Then form 45-50 gm balls with the dough .
Place the doughs slightly apart on the tray. 
Cover with cling film n let them proof for 45 mins.
Prepare the topping paste.
After proofing , beat an egg with a teaspoon water to use as egg wash.
Preheat oven to 190c.
Egg wash the buns.
Pipe a X on the buns with the topping paste.
Bake for 13 mins.
Remove and cool completely on rack before storing.


After 1st proof

After 2nd proof

Before bake

After bake 
Inside the bun

Friday, 25 March 2016

Creamy herb sauce chicken

Thanks to my friend Hei Chin for sharing this recipe with me. 
The original name is called Celine Dijon Chicken from The Looneyspoons. As I replaced some ingredients especially the Dijon mustard I think I can no longer name it as such.

2-3 pcs of skinless chicken breasts - original 4 pcs
Some cooking oil

Part 1
1 cup Marigold momo juice - peach ( replaced unsweetened apple juice)
1 tbsp S&B mustard (replaced Dijon mustard)
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 small yellow onion minced (replaced large shallot)
1/2 tsp of dried thyme
1/4 tsp of dried rosemary 
1/4 tsp black pepper

Part 2 sauce
1/4 cup light sour cream
1 tsp honey
1 tsp cornstarch 

Whisk all part 1 sauce together. Set aside

Slash the chicken breasts in thicker areas.
Heat about 2 tbsp oil in sauce pan 
Brown the chicken on both sides
Depending on the thickness , you may need to use at least 3-4 minutes on each side. However no need to cook through as it will be simmered later.

Add in the part 1 sauce. Reduce heat and cover. Simmer for about 5 minutes till the breasts are cooked. Remove chicken to the plates. The juice in the pan would have reduced greatly.

Mix part 2 sauce. Add into the pan.
Mix and cook till bubbly.
Spoon the sauce over the chicken.

Serve with a fresh garden salad and some bread.


Juice added to browned chicken breasts
Here are 2 & 1/2 pcs breasts 

Chicken cooked

Add part 2 sauce

Final sauce for chicken 

I ate my meal with yakult drink :)

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Stir fry black fungus with assorted vegetables

This dish is cooked after inspiration from visiting a organic vegetable farm in Neo Tiew, Lim Chu Kang area.

This is a very easy stir fry as I used fresh black fungus.

The fungus in the picture - you can get in Fairprice too says the farm salesman


Sauce used

1 orange small pepper julienned ( remove seeds)
4 shiitake mushrooms sliced ( stem removed)
Black fungus a handful - washed first.
Cut away any hard part at the bottom and then cut into bite size
1 packet sweet peas - remove the veins
1 clove garlic minced - skin removed
Oyster sauce about 1.5 tablespoon
Kikkoman soy sauce about 2 tablespoon
1/2 cup water
Cooking oil 2 tablespoon 
Optional - about 10 pcs of salted cashew nuts

Heat the oil a few seconds 
Add in garlic stir fry about 10 seconds 
Add in all peas, orange pepper and mushrooms
Stir fry till peas turn darker green mushrooms look browned on white part
Add in the oyster and soy sauce 
Add in the fungus and stir fry  for another 15 seconds 
Add in the water and fry another 15 seconds 
Dish up and sprinkle cashew nuts on top 
Serve with white rice 


Saturday, 12 March 2016

U Picnic 2016 - Space Odyssey

We returned for another Upicnic organized by Ntuc. This time it has moved to the north of Singapore - very grateful for that!

It was a hot day and Joie has the most fun doing the activities . Some photos below.

Drawing inside the dome 


Having fun at Planet 51 - bouncy castle 

We didn't do other activities as we had to participate only if you hold a time card for the activity n at the stipulated time.

It was a large turnout and only a small number of children can do the activities at one time. We are lucky we were able to play her favorite bouncy castle.

In the straits times report , over 7000 turned up for this event.

We played and went back to daddy and sat down to enjoy the concert.

Goodies in the picnic bag

Put on my fancy star ring

She almost can't fit in!

We can draw inside and outside the dome 

We wore Star Wars tees to compliment the Space Odyssey theme

Great songs from the band

Managed to catch Joe for a photo

Joe on stage 

Fun flashing rings 

Photo with the planets 

Night view

Storm troopers

Darth Vader

LED dancers

They were several stage games mostly children attended and best dressed costumes and count the stars and anti gravity pose contests.

We left after the band came on again 

Note - always be early as the events start at 5 pm sharp 
Bring extra picnic mats
Bring umbrellas n sun block
Game booths will be crowded no matter which system the organizers use 
Don't be too hard on the organizer - give and take a little - stay happy 

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Steamed egg with minced pork

This is one childhood dish that I love. This is my version as I remember it. 

One box of minced pork from supermarket such as Fairprice
Sesame oil 
Cooking oil
3 eggs
Soy sauce about 2 teaspoon
Dash of white pepper
Some spring onions chopped
Optional - salted egg yolk


Oil a large plate to prevent egg from sticking (I used an enamel plate)
Marinate the minced pork with soy sauce and a dash of white pepper n a dash of sesame oil 
Place the minced pork on the plate 
Beat 3 eggs lightly and pour over the minced pork
I also break up the pork slightly to let the egg flow in 
Optional - crush a salted egg yolk and spread around the surface
Boil the water in the covered wok 
When water boils , steam cook the pork for 15 minutes
Before serve, sprinkle a bit of sesame sauce and put chopped spring onions 
Best eaten warm with rice 

Thursday, 3 March 2016

White bread loaf

Today I baked these loaves using Taiwan Bread flour called Blue Jacket

On the packet there is a recipe but I halved the recipe and also incorporated previous method to make this bread 
Largely from bakingwithmi

500 gm bread flour
15 gm instant yeast
35 gm castor sugar
8 gm fine salt
350 gm slightly warm milk 
Bread improver (omitted)

Measure your milk in a jug
Into it stir in a tablespoon of sugar from the measured portion
Then add in the yeast stir well and keep in warm place to let the yeast bubble 
Then prepare your mixing bowl 
I use my kenwood mixer
Pour the yeast milk into the bowl
Add in the balance sugar and salt 
Mix well with a spoon
Add in all the flour
Use the dough hook and start mixing on low for about 3 minutes 
Then adjust to medium speed about  5 minutes or till the dough texture looks smooth 
Then add in the softened butter
Use low speed to mix in the butter about 2-3 minutes
Then use medium speed about 10 minutes till the dough is smooth again

Oil a medium size bowl for proofing
Shape the dough into a ball and proof it in the bowl 
Cover with cling film n proof about 40 mins in a slightly warmed oven

Before proof

After proof

Remove the dough onto a baking paper n flatten slightly with your palm into a disc
I divided into 6 triangles and shaped then into balls
Cover with cling film and proof for 25 minutes

Then I followed the video above from King Arthur Flour 

Grease 2 loaf pans with butter . I used a Crisco butter spray 

Shape each ball onto a lightly floured surface till almost oval like 
Fold one third over n press down the seam with the side of palm 
Turn the other side to you and fold the other 1/3 over n press the seam down 
Then roll it on the work top into a log
Place 3 rolls into the loaf tin and proof till they raise slightly over the loaf tin
Bake at 150c preheated oven for 30-35 mins

After 2nd proof 

Shape to oval 

Fold 1/3 over n press seam
Do the same the other side

Then roll it to log 

Put inside the oiled or buttered loaf tins

Ready to eat!