Monday, December 31, 2012

Kaya Puffs/Kaya Kok

It has been many years since I had kaya puffs. This is one snack that I will ask my sisters to bring if they come to visit me but I totally forgotten about it when my youngest sister came to visit in July. In order to get over the craving and also used up my homemade kaya I decided to make these. For non Malaysian/Singaporean readers, kaya is a jam made from coconut milk, sugar and eggs. It is eaten like regular jam or sometimes make into these puffs.

I used the recipe from Kuali but the result was not the same like the one I had back home. The pastry is flaky but on the dry side as I prefer the pastry to be on the tender side but nonetheless it is good enough to get over my craving. I have to try out another recipe soon.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Fried Sweet Potato Balls

This is a well-know snack in Malaysia and mostly sold by the street vendors. These deep-fried sweet potato balls are called ‘fan shu tan’ in Cantonese and it is slightly smaller than the size of a ping pong ball. They are cruncy and golden brown on the outside,soft and sweet on the inside. I remember eating this ages ago at Cameron Highlands. Cameron Highlands is a highland region located around 200km from Kuala Lumpur at the state of Pahang. It is well known for its agriculture and also cool weather which is very popular among tourist. Due to its weather, tea and strawberries, which are rarities in the places under the Equator, are substantially planted here. There is this one street vendor that sells these sweet potato balls at the market and we have to get it each time we visited this place.

I Google for the recipe and there are a few version of it. I finally settle with the one by Angie of Seasaltwithfood . This is a full recipe but I did only half of the recipe which yield about 24 balls


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Candy Cane Sugar Cookies

I know it is a bit late to post Christmas cookies this but I am trying to make it on time for Aspiring Baker’s event. I have wanted to make this cookie for many years but just never get to do it until this year. I will normally bake simple cookies for Christmas with requires minimal work but because of the Aspiring Baker’s Christmas Motif Bakes I decided to attempt to bake something a bit more challenging. One of them was the Snowflake Sugar Cookies with requires decorating it with royal icing and this one.

First I thought it might be difficult to make but they’re not. Basically it’s a sugar cookie recipe with a little bit extra in it. The dough freezes well too so you can make it earlier and bake it whenever you want. Don’t they look festive? If you are looking for a unique and delicious addition to your traditional Christmas cookies this might be the one.


Saturday, December 22, 2012

Pistachio Linzer Cookies with Strawberry Filling

I love making linzer cookies as I think they are the most beautiful I ever made. Beside the look, I just love the taste of this light shortbread combined with a tiny dollop of jam in the middle. They are just perfect with a cup of coffee and tea. They might look delicate but they are quite easy to put together. It just involves a few extra steps compare to the regular cookies but the end results are all worth it. I made quite a few of these to give it out to my friends and neighbors.

To my dearest family, friends and blog readers,

May peace, happiness and goodwill be with you not only on Christmas, but throughout the year and beyond. Wishing you Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Snowflake Sugar Cookies

I know I’ve been posting a few sugar cookies here but this time I tried out Alton Brown of Food Network recipe. I think I like this recipe better than the previous one. Since I will be submitting these cookies for the Aspiring Baker # 26 Creative Christmas Motif Bakes hosted by Alan of Travelling Foodies I decided to use snowflakes cookie cutter and decorates it with royal icing. I am not a fan of decorating cakes or cookies but after doing it a few times I got the hang of it. I kind of enjoy doing it now :)

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Pekan Beef Curry/Opor Daging Pekan

PAHANG is the largest state in Peninsula Malaysia and is situated in the eastern coastal region. The cuisines of Pahang were influenced by the Indians, Chinese and Arabs, who came as traders during the busy spice trade days. I am not too familiar with their cuisine actually. I’ve been to a few beach resorts there but that was a long time ago and during that time I never take note of any of the food served but with this MFF event I am learning more about the cuisine of other states in Malaysia.

For the state of Pahang I am making this dish called Opor Daging Pekan or in English Pekan Beef Curry. This is a traditional dish of the people of Pahang especially in the kampong/village around the royal town of Pekan. It is usually served at traditional Malay weddings or festival. The taste of this dish is pretty similar to Beef rending because of coconut paste/kerisik also slight tangy with the editions of tamarind paste in it. I really like this dish and planning to cook another big batch of it so I can freeze it up. Besides using beef you can cook it with chicken or mutton/lamb. It goes really well with rice, nasi impit/ketupat or even bread.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Ikan Balado/Fried Fish in Tangy Chili Sauce

Balado is one of the sambal from West Sumatra (a.k.a Minang) Most Indonesian know how to make balado. The basic ingredients are shallots, chilies, tomato, lime juice, salt and sugar. I learned this version of balado from our Indonesian helper in Malaysia many years ago. I like it on blanch vegetables or just simple fried fish like this. The fish tasted so perfect with the tangy sweet balado.

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Nutella Swirl Thumbprint Cookies

Christmas is just around the corner and I am sure many of you are busy baking cookies now. I won’t be baking much this year. I asked Diana what cookies she wants me to bake for Christmas and as usual she wanted Chocolate Chips cookies and this Thumbprint Cookies. These cookies are one of the classic cookies that I made every Christmas. I think we like it a lot because of the combination of buttery cookies and sweet jam.

Making these cookies is a bit more work if you are doing it alone as it took me a couple of hours just to roll them and filled them up with jams. Feel free to get your family or friends involved if you are making this. I add some Nutella to the dough to make it look a bit more attractive. I just mailed them to Diana and another friend of mine in PA and I hope they like it.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Chocolate Chip Pancakes

I don’t normally make breakfast but if Diana is around I will try making it for her. She came home for Thanksgiving so I made these for our breakfast one morning. Since I don’t have any chocolate chips in pantry I just added some chopped chocolate to the pancake. To serve we had it with some butter, sliced bananas and maple syrup,

Monday, December 03, 2012

Szechuan Style Eggplant

I made this dish when I was under the weather not too long ago. With the medicine, coughing and stuffy nose and all, my taste bud went haywire. No mood to cook or appetite to eat anything except for rice porridge and soup. There were 2 eggplants in the vegetable compartment and it is going soft and wrinkles on me. I always have this habit of buying egg plant but never cook them so it always end up in the garbage bin but I am not going to let that happen this time.

Since I like eggplant a lot I convinced myself to cook it and 20 minutes later a plate of aromatic, spicy and sweet dish to have it with my porridge. This is exactly what I needed to clear up my nose and head. I made this dish with hot bean paste which is commonly used in Szechuan cooking. You can get it any Asian store and some supermarket even carries it.