Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Chinese Glutinous Rice Rolls/Fan Tuan

This is a Taiwanese breakfast rice rolls. You can find some street vendors selling at near the bus stations or along the busy road side. In Chinese it is called ‘Fan Tuan’ it is compacted roll of glutinous rice that’s filled with eggs, fried dough (Chinese culler) meat and etc… It looks like a Mexican Burrito. The rice roll is roll up in a plastic wrap so you can eat it on the go. The first time I tried this was at a Taiwanese restaurant at Foster City. There were pretty good. This restaurant only serves this kind of breakfast on weekends. It is eaten with warm soy bean milk.
Anyway I am trying to replica it at home. I am doing the version that I’ve eaten before but I understand in Taiwan they do serve different kind of fillings so I guess you can basically put anything you want in it.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Steamed Pan Fried Buns

The first time I tried this type of bun was in New Zealand. My good friend Shereen took me to a tiny Asian restaurant and they serve this type of buns and they were really good. I tried making it at home and they turn out pretty well. The filling of the buns are raw and you have to pan fried and steam cook them at the same time. It is very much like dumplings or gyoza. The dough of these buns is slightly different from the normal steamed buns. It has thinner and chewy dough. I like it a lot as the fried bun has a crispy golden brown bottom and serve with Chinese black vinegar dip but I just like it as it is. I am surprise Carlos like this too as normally he is not very adventurous enough to try out new food. I made some with sesame bottom but you can make it plain if you like.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Espresso Almond Butter Cake

I am one person who bakes on impulse. I don’t plan my baking and I just go with the mood of that particular day. This cake is the results of it. While checking on my fridge I saw some leftover sour cream and ground almond. I thought of making some macaroon but decided against it because of the warm weather as it is not good to dry out the macaroons. So I end up baking this cake. I don’t want the regular almond butter cake so I added some espresso powder to it and voila!! An Espresso Almond cake.

This cake is really moist, nutty and with great coffee flavor. It goes really well coffee or a tall glass of cold milk. I added a bit more sugar to this cake because of the bitterness of the espresso powder but you can adjust it to your liking.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Homemade Mixed Berries Jam

Come summer I look forward to all the berries that I can get from the farmer’s market or supermarket. I will buy loads of them when the price it right. It will be the time that I make jam out of it. I prefer homemade jam than the store bought kind as I find them way too sweet. I still put quite a bit of sugar in my jam but not as much as the store bought kind. Well, jam is a way to preserve fruit with sugar so please doesn’t ask me how to make it sugar free or low sugar as I don’t know how but I did use organic sugar here. So I would like to think it is much healthier ha ha..Anyway, you should consume anything in moderation.

I normally just made 2-3 jars at a time to last us for 2 -3 months but this time I made a bit more since I got a very good bargain on the fruits from the vendor. I gave a few jars away to close friends. This is refrigerator jam and not intended to be sealed and stored in the pantry. So make sure you refrigerate it.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Baked Eggplant with Garlic Sesame Dressing

I am trying to cut down on meat in my diet and I am cooking more vegetable dishes for myself. I still cook meat as Carlos still like his meat. Anyway I love eggplants (aubergine/brinjal) cook in any style. Did you know that eggplant skin contains a powerful antioxidant called nasunin? Nasunin is supposed to be good for brain health, helping to protect the fats in brain cell membranes (which protect brain cells from free radicals). Eggplant is also an excellent source of fiber and manganese. So it is good to have more eggplant in our diet.

Initially for this dish I plan to steam the eggplant but I was too lazy to take out my big steamer so I end up putting them in the oven. I actually like it better this way as the eggplant is not too mushy and by baking, it gives it a nice toasty aroma. To some people this dish might sounds bland but it is far from being tasteless. The soft eggplant just soaks up all the yummy dressing. They were so good and all I need is just this one dish for my meal.

Monday, August 04, 2014

Baked Panko Parmesan Zucchini Crisps

My two zucchini plants have been giving me a few zucchini and since Carlos is not a fan of it I have to find ways to finish them up all by myself. I put them in my Korean pancakes, my curries and make it into this healthy snack. I coat them in panko breadcrumbs as they are much lighter and give the zucchini much crispier texture. They are great as snack, appetizer or side dish to any burger meal. This is much healthier than potato chips because they’re baked and not fried. Since I had it as snack I did make a dipping sauce to go with it but you can use any type of dipping sauce of your choice.