Friday, December 27, 2013

Beef and Spinach Lasagna

I hope all of you had a wonderful Christmas celebration with family and friends and in a few days it will be the end of 2013. I hope year 2014 will be a better year for us. We won’t be doing much for the New Year as Diana won’t be home. I miss that girl. I wish she live nearer to us :( It will be a low key affair for us except I am looking forward to indulge myself with some Caviar that I ordered online.

I will be flying back to Malaysia in January and looking forward to spend some time with my family and I too hope to meet up with my blogging friends when I am home. Enough of my ranting and let’s get on to this awesome pasta.

I made this with Diana when she was home. I am not a big fan of lasagnas that are loaded with too much meat or cheese so I decided to add some spinach to it. It has a good balance of cheese, meat and veggie in it. I cheated a bit and used a good quality store bought marinara sauce as a base. You can always use homemade one if you have it.


Thursday, December 19, 2013

Panettone (Italian Christmas Bread)

This bread is a must in our household during Christmas season. I will usually buy them but I did attempt making them once a few years ago. I followed the recipe from a book but it turns out as hard as a rock and never try baking them again until this year. This time I used the recipe from the internet. I found there are so many of them out there but most of them requires a lot of work and days of proofing. Those who knew me will know I will not attempt recipes like that as I don’t have the patience for it. So I end up using the recipe from Laura in the Kitchen which is a very straight forward method just like making regular bread but it does require longer proofing time than regular bread.

This recipe makes beautiful, soft, supple dough that is much like a brioche. This bread is a true show-stopper. It’s stunning, and the flavor lives up to its looks. The bread is soft and sweet, and just loaded with flavor thanks to the vanilla extract,dried fruits, orange and lemon zest.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Ma’amoul Cookies with Pistachio and Walnut Filling

Is time for Christmas baking again and Sam at Oh Nuts sent me some nuts for my baking this year. They came just in time for me to bake some Ma’amoul cookies for AFF – West Asia Month event. Ma’amoul is small shortbread pastries filled with nuts, dates or dried fruits. They are very popular in the Gulf countries especially on religions festival. The Muslims eat them at night during Ramadan, the Christians eat them during Easter and the Jewish communities eat them on Rosh Hashanah or Hanukkah. They may be in the shape of balls or domed usually decorated by hand or be made in special wooden molds. Since I don’t have any of the molds I just shape them using my tart mold.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Roasted Maple and Bacon Butternut Squash

One of my favorite things for autumn and winter is the abundance of squash in the market. Two of my favorite kinds are the kabocha and butternut. They are naturally sweet, low in calories and full of vitamin A and C. I usually like to roast them up and serve it as side dishes. I prepared this particular side dish to take it to a Thanksgiving get together at a friend house. It was so well received by everyone even by the non squash fan and I thought I should put the recipe here as I will be making it again soon. I simply tossed it with olive oil, salted and pepper and when it is nearly done roasting I add some maple syrup, cinnamon and cayenne pepper to it. It gives this dish a sweet, salty and slightly spicy flavor.

Monday, December 02, 2013

Citrus Chiffon Cake

I will never get tired of baking or eating chiffon cake. There’s something extremely satisfying about baking this cake especially when you watch it rise to a beautiful height. This cake is light, fluffy, moist and with delicate citrus flavor. I will normally eat it plain but you can always frost it with icing.


1 3/4 cups Flour
1/4 tsp of salt
1 tsp baking powder