Saturday, December 29, 2007

Chocolate and coffee CUPCAKES

Cupcakes are for party, and for this time I suggest Mezzo Mezzo cupcakes, a dark and handsome chocolate-coffee cupcake from ...............  Browsing the book last night and I had a feeling that this was the one I want. Chocolate and coffee flavor is great for everyone, and this one is very good for every party. This cupcake is not too sweet and filled with rich chocolate and coffee flavor, topped with chocolate and coffee whipped cream (that tastes like coffee ice cream, yummy). You can eat them plain if you like but the chocolate and coffee whipped cream makes this cupcake much more delicious.

Chocolate and coffee cupcakes

1⅓cups (190g)
all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons
baking powder
1 teaspoon
baking soda
1 teaspoon
½ cup(50g)
unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup(210g)
light brown sugar
3 tablespoons
instant coffee powder
½ cup/1 stick
unsalted butter, melted and cooled
eggs, slightly beaten
1 cup
sour cream
1 cup
heavy whipping cream, chilled
3 tablespoons
1 tablespoon
unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon
instant coffee powder
Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a large bowl, mix all of the dry ingredients together and set aside.
In another bowl, mix butter, eggs, and sour cream together. Pour into dry ingredients, rapidly mixing with a wooden spoon until batter is smooth.
Spoon batter into cupcake papers, filling cups about ⅔full. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean.
Remove from oven and cool.
To make the frosting: put cream, sugar, cocoa, and coffee powder in a large bowl. Stir, cover, and let sit in the refrigerator for about an hour, until chocolate and coffee have dissolved. Remove from refrigerator and beat with an electric beater until stiff.
Frost cooled cupcakes just before serving.
Recipe from: Cupcakes Galore

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Happy Home Made Bread by Mikasan

みかさんの手づくりパンのある楽しい食卓 (Happy Home Made (made by hand) Bread (a meal with a bread) by Mikasan (you can see her home page, quite cute but the page is in Japanese)) As the name suggest, the recipes in the book are not the fancy breads, just lovely little bread that you can make by your hand (and easy to make too), no technique require.

The book starts with the basic recipes of rich and lean dough, and by adding or changing some ingredients, you get a different kinds of bread (sound familiar, it the same idea as the one that I tell you about in sausage rolls, because bread don’t need many ingredients, so change a little bit can make a big different ).

The book look like a picture book as the Japanese cookbooks always be, the picture from start making the bread until it’s coming out of the oven is very promising that if follow her method, you can make a bread for sure. There are a lot of recipes (that comes from the basic), milk bread, brown sugar bread, table roll, raisin bread, French bread, Chinese steam buns (plus Japanese pork belly stew recipe to eat with), and a lot more.

The last time I made raisin bread, it’s very good, real soft and great fragrance from the rum. For today, ミルク スクエア(Milk square bread) is the same dough for testing this time. For the best texture “Don’t use Microwave for reheat this bread”.

Milk square bread

Makes 9 squares

Bread Flour 200 g
Instant dried yeast 5 g
Sugar 10 g
Salt ½ tsp
Unsalted butter (soft) 20 g
whole milk 140 ml
Egg wash
1 egg + 1tbsp water

Put the flour and yeast in a bowl, whisk to combine, add the sugar and salt whisk again. Pour the milk mixture into the bowl, use large spoon to mix everything together. Put the butter in the bowl and rub until all butter is distributed, and knead briefly to bring all the ingredients together. Take the dough out of the bowl and knead, until the dough is soft, smooth and elastic about 10 minutes.

Put the dough into a light buttered bowl. Let the dough rise in a warm place until double in size about 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Take the dough out of the bowl. Gently press down the dough and a rolling pin to roll the dough to press the dough into a rectangle, about 18x18 cm. Cut the dough into 9 pieces (about 6x6cm). Place the dough on the oven sheet. Cover the shaped dough; let rise until almost doubled in volume, to 30 minutes. Brush with egg wash before baking.

Bake for 10 minutes (or more).

Bread recipe from: みかさんの手づくりパンのある楽しい食卓

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

daily delicious life

Good things don’t have to come with a luxury tag, I hope you agree with me. Going out, is the time that I will update about the food and sweet in the market (mostly, I cook and bake at home than eating out) and this is my little good thing. I like the day that I can spend a lot of time looking at the lovely windows display of shops and café, even don’t taste or buy anything, beautiful decoration of food, sweet or pastry, always bring a lot of inspiration for the home cook like me.

But, today I found new favorite, from the Starbucks Coffee, the “Almond Long” – Crispy sticks of caramelized almond cookie. This cookie is very delicious, crispy and lightly sweet. But this is not for advertising, I just show you this one and hoping that I can make it by myself. So today, let me enjoy it, while searching my cookbooks for the recipe. And I will let you know when I ready to make it.

Monday, December 24, 2007


For people who like to be busy in the kitchen (ex: me), I suggest making something like this “Moussaka”, because you will need some time. First you have to make meat sauce, then fry potatoes, fry eggplants, make béchamel sauce and at last baking it. Ok, it’s not hard as I said because you don’t have to make all in one day, you can make the meat sauce and fry both things and keep all in the fridge. When you want to make moussaka, take them out of the fridge, layer all the ingredients and make the béchamel sauce then put it in the oven, and after that you have a complete meal. This moussaka recipe is from......... I don’t know about the original recipe or ingredient, but I like this one, so if you have all this ingredients at home and don’t know what to do, get in the kitchen, be busy, be happy and have a yummy dinner, like me.
Serves 8

Large eggplants (about 1 kg/2 lb 4oz in total)
about 250 ml (1 cup)
Light olive oil
Large onion, finely chopped
3 tablespoons
Roughly chopped flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
Garlic cloves, finely chopped
850 g (1 lb 14 oz)
Minced pork
1 teaspoon
Ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon
Dried oregano
Bay leaf
125 ml (½ cup)
White wine
500 g (z cups)
Tomato passata
500 g (1 lb 2 oz)
Potatoes, peeled
béchamel sauce
120 g (4 oz)
125 g (1cup)
Plain flour
1 litre ( 2cups)
Warm milk
A little freshly grated nutmeg
Pan: oval dish, 35 cm long, 24 cm wide and 6 cm deep.
Trim the hats off the eggplants, then slice the eggplants lengthways into 0.5mm (¼ inch) slices.
Sprinkle salt quite generously over the slices and leave them in the sink or in a bowl for about
30 minutes to draw out any bitter juices.
Heat 3 tablespoons of the oil in a wide non-stick saucepan. Sauté the onion until it is softened and lightly golden. Add the parsley and garlic and cook for another minute until you can smell the garlic, add the mince. Cook over medium-high heat until the meat loses its water and begins to brown. Add the cinnamon, oregano and bay leaf and season with salt and pepper. When the mince is golden, add the wine. Let most of the wine evaporate, then add the tomato purée and leave it to simmer for about 30 minutes, uncovered, stirring now and then.
Meanwhile, slice the potatoes lengthways into 5 mm slices and pat them dry. Heat 4 -5 tablespoons of olive oil in a large non-stick saucepan and fry the potatoes in batches over medium heat until golden on both sides and cooked through. Remove to a plate lined with kitchen paper, and sprinkle with a little salt.
Rinse the salt from the eggplant with cold water and pat dry, fry in batches in the same pan and oil as the potatoes. When the underside is golden, turn over and prick with a fork in several places, especially in any still hard bits, so that they are almost collapsing. If you press down with a fork, they should not be hard and papery but instead should be almost like a purée. Remove the slices to a plate lined with kitchen paper to absorb some of the oil while you finish the next lot.
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Arrange half the eggplant over the base of your oven dish. Then add the potatoes in a single layer. Add half the mince, pressing it down with the back of a large spoon. Add the rest of the eggplant in a layer, and then a final layer of mince. Press it down and you should still have about 2½ cm spaces at the top of the dish.
Make the béchamel just before you bake the moussaka.
Melt the butter in a saucepan. Whisk in the flour and cook for a few minutes, stirring constantly, then adding the warm milk. It will be immediately absorbed, whisking with one hand while adding ladlefuls of milk with the other. When the sauce seems to be smooth and not too stiff, add salt, pepper and a grating of nutmeg and continue cooking let it comes to the boil, for minutes or so, mixing all the time. It should be a very thick and smooth sauce. Taste for seasoning and spoon over the mince, it should come just about flush with the top of the dish.
Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour with a baking sheet underneath to catch any spills, until the moussaka begins to bubble up and the top is golden in parts. Leave it in the oven to cool slightly before serving. It could even be served at room temperature. Cut into traditional square servings.

Saturday, December 22, 2007


Peanut butter cookie is always welcome by everyone, included me, I really like peanut butter (without anything else, just give me a jar and I finish it). This cookie taste like peanut butter in a solid form (but if you like chunk peanut butter, you may have to eat directly from a jar, or add some salted roasted peanut into this cookie). Using ice cream scoop make the cookie look uniform and they will all done at the same speed. I don’t think that you should keep it too long, the taste is very good the day it made.


2½ cups
all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons
baking soda
½ teaspoon
salt (+ ¼ teaspoon if you like a little bit salty like me)
1 cup (2 sticks)
unsalted butter, softened
1 cup
granulated sugar
1 cup
packed light-brown sugar
large eggs
1½ cups
smooth peanut butter
* For the best texture, use regular, not natural, peanut butter.
1. Preheat oven to 350 Whisk flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.
2. Put butter and sugars into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Mix in eggs, then peanut butter.
3. Reduce speed to low, Add flour mixture in 3 batches, mixing until just combined after each addition. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate 30 minutes.
4. Using a 1½-inch ice cream scoop, drop dough onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper, spacing about 1½-inch apart. Press cookies with fork tines to flatten and create a cross-hatch pattern. Bake until golden brown, 14 to 16 minutes. Let cool on sheets 5 minutes. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool completely. The cookies can be stored in airtight containers at room temperature up to 3 days.
Recipe from: Martha Stewart Living magazine
Issue: July 2006

Thursday, December 20, 2007


The Christmas time is coming, preparing is a must when you host a party even in the family (small or big). I think about something to make and not a Christmas fruitcake, I don’t want a cake today. So, what about Christmas bread with a lot of dried fruit, what about Panettone.
Panetttone is traditional Christmas bread, typical bread that enjoyed for Christmas and New Year around Italy. But today we will enjoy it at home, with an easy recipe from ..............(but, if you want to go to Italy than making it, it’ll ok, but this one is very good.) For the dried fruit feel free to use anything you like in the same amount and you will love this bread more.
I make an individual Panetttone with a paper cup, so everyone will have their own, and for today testing everyone told me that it will be better to make more.
(12 paper cup 6.5 x 6.5 cm.)

warm water (about 110°F)
2 envelopes ( ¼ ounce each)
active dry yeast
1 pound 5 ounces (about 4 cups)
all- purpose flour, plus more for dusting
½ cup
warm milk (about 110°F)
⅔ cup
large whole eggs
large egg yolks
1 teaspoon
pure vanilla extract
1½ sticks (¾ cup)
unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces, plus melted butter for bowl, plastic wrap, and molds
1 ¼ teaspoons
2 cups
mixed dried fruit, such as currants, raisins, and cranberries
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
Finely grated zest of 1 orange
1 tablespoon
heavy cream
In a medium bowl, sprinkle 1 envelope yeast over the warm water. Stir until yeast has dissolved, and let stand until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes. Stir in ½ cup flour, and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 30 minutes.
Pour warm milk into a small bowl, and sprinkle with remaining envelope yeast. Stir until yeast has dissolved, and let stand until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together sugar, whole eggs, 2 egg yolks, and vanilla. Whisk in milk-yeast mixture.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, salt, and remaining 3½ cups flour on low speed until mixture is crumbly. With mixer on low speed, slowly add egg mixture, and beat on medium speed until smooth. Add the water-yeast mixture; beat on high speed until dough is sticky and elastic, and forms long strands when stretched, about 9 minutes. Beat in dried fruits and zests. Transfer dough to a buttered bowl, and cover with buttered plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 2 hours.
Generously butter two panettone molds; set aside. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface; knead a few times, turning each time, until smooth. Divide dough in half, and knead into balls. Drop balls into prepared molds. Place on a rimmed baking sheet; cover loosely with buttered plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until dough reaches just above the top of the mold, 45 to 60 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°F, with a rack in the lower third.
In a small bowl, whisk together remaining yolk and the cream. Brush tops of dough with egg wash. Using kitchen scissors cut an X in the top of each ball of dough. Bake 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F; continue baking, rotating sheet halfway through, until panettones are deep golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the centers registers 190°F, about 45 minutes. (If the tops brown too quickly, tent with aluminum foil.) Transfer baking sheet to a wire rack to cool 15 to 20 minutes. Turn out loaves onto rack to cool completely.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Apples for Jam recipes for life

By Tessa Kiros

As you know that I always fall in love with beautiful cookbook, this one is very lovely too. I saw this book the first time when I went to see my sister in UK, I really liked it but I didn’t want to carry a lot of books (I already bought some books and my luggage was heavy) When I came back, I ordered it along with Falling Cloudberries: A World of Family Recipes from the same author.

If you like a cookbook with a story you may like this one, most of the recipe come with a little story and the memory that they bring to the author’s mind, the recipes are divided into color section: red, orange, yellow, pink, green, gold, white, brown, monochrome, stripes, and multicolor, each color reflect the color of the food.

The recipes are multinational but not fusion, some are Italian (as the author live in Tuscany with her family) but she’s traveling a lot, and inspire by many cuisines from her background, it’s like the food that bring back some memory from the day that we were children. I like the feeling that the recipes are simple; children friendly (she live with her two daughter), the ingredients are easy to find and look delicious.

I use it a lot, if not for recipe, I use it for inspiration, I like to browse the book looking at the lovely pictures. Because the recipes are not divided by their course, you can turn to it anytime of the day, breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner, sweet or snack when you turn the page by page you will want to get into the kitchen and cook something.

It’s not a professional cookbook, but a simple and lovely recipe that you may want to use everyday, and I know that if you really like cooking at home you will love this book that same as I do.

Picture from: Apples for Jam: Recipes for Life

Monday, December 17, 2007


It’s seen like a hard work when you see a long recipe like this, but believe me, it’s not. The dough can be put directly into the fridge after mixing, so there are no times to waste. And the crumb can be prepared ahead, just put all things together when you’re ready to bake. I put a lot of crumb inside the bun too, so inside of the buns tasted like butter cookies. But if you want to make the same as in the book .............. follow a small recipe of streusel and sprinkle the crumb over the dough before bake.
First you have to make: Rich sour cream dough, the recipe will make 2 pounds of dough that you can put the half in the refrigerator for other kind of bread or make the large crumb buns, it’s up to you (it’s a soft and buttery dough, you can use it in other recipe or just bake them on their own, it’s good too.)
Rich sour cream dough
The dough has to refrigerate overnight.

4 tablespoons
¼ cup
warm water (110°F to 115°F)
1 package
3 cups
unbleached all-purpose flour, spooned in and leveled
(plus ¼ cup for Hand Method)
1 teaspoon
¾ cup(1½ sticks)
unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes plus 1 teaspoon soft butter for brushing top of dough
large eggs
½ cup
sour cream
1 teaspoon
pure vanilla extract

1. Rinse a small bowl in hot water to warm it. Add 1 tablespoon of the sugar and the warm water to the bowl. Sprinkle the yeast over the water. Do not stir. Cover the bowl with a saucer and let the mixture stand for 5 minutes. Stir it briefly with a fork, cover again, and let it stand for 2 to 3 minutes, or until bubbly.
Note: If using instant yeast, you don’t have to do all this, start make the dough, but remember to mix the instant yeast in the flour.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix on low speed the 3 cups of flour, remaining 3 tablespoons of sugar and the salt. Add the slightly firm butter and continue to mix until meal-size crumbs form, 2 to 4 minutes, depending upon the temperature of the butter. Stop the mixer.
3. Using a fork, in a large bowl, mix the eggs, sour cream, and vanilla. Add the sour cream mixture to the flour, along with the dissolved yeast, and mix on low speed until a rough dough is formed.
Note: If using instant yeast, add the water into the sour cream mixture, then add the sour cream mixture to the flour mixture, and mix on low speed until a rough dough is formed.
Note: This is a soft dough. (And I must say, very soft, but it will be firm up after refrigerated, don’t panic.)
4. Lightly butter a medium bowl for storing the dough. Turn the dough into the prepared bowl, smoothing the top with lightly floured hands. Brush the top lightly with the soft butter. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
Second: Carole’s favorite streusel , and this one is very good.
Carole’s favorite streusel

6 to 7 tablespoons
2/3 cup (10 ⅔)tablespoons
unsalted butter
1 cup
1½ cups
all-purpose flour, spooned in and leveled
½ cup
¾ cup
½ teaspoon
¾ teaspoon
ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon
½ teaspoon
baking powder
¼ teaspoon
½ teaspoon
1. Place the butter in a 2-quart heavy-bottomed saucepan for small recipe or 3-quart for large recipe and heat until almost melted; remove from the heat and cool to tepid.
2. Whisk together the flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, salt, and nuts if using. Add to the butter and stir with a fork until blended and mixture begins to form crumbs. Gently squeeze the mixture with your hand to form larger lumps, then break them apart with your fingertips. Before using, let the streusel stand for 10 to 15 minutes.
½ recipe (about 1 pound)
Rich Sour Cream Dough
1 large recipe
Carole’s Favorite Streusel
large egg lightly beaten with 1 teaspoon water, for egg wash
1. Remove the dough from the refrigerator 1 to 1½ hours before shaping.
2. Generously butter a 9 x 9 x 2-inch square pan. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough gently six to eight times, or until smooth, then pat it into a square. Using a dough scraper or a sharp knife, divide the dough evenly into nine pieces. Cupping your hand over each piece, roll the dough on a barely floured surface, continuously rotating it until it forms a ball.
3. Pat a dough slightly to flatten it and put about 1½ teaspoons of streusel in the center, then seal it by bring the border into the center and press them firmly together. Do the same with all the dough.
4. Arrange the balls in the pan, (sealed side down) placing three pieces across and three pieces down. Be sure to space them evenly. Cover the pan with a tea towel and set in a warm place to rise for 45 minutes, or until the balls begin to touch each other.
5. Fifteen minutes before baking, position the rack in the lower third of the oven. Heat the oven to 350°F.
6. Gently brush the tops of the buns with the egg wash. Sprinkle the remaining crumb mixture heavily over the dough. Press the streusel slightly into the dough. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the streusel is lightly browned. Remove from the oven and place on a rack to cool. Break apart when ready to serve.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

My Naan Bread

I know, it’s look like other kind of flat bread but believe me, this is my naan. I adapt this recipe from................ Naan Bread in original recipe is more flat because there is no resting time before get into the oven, you just shape it and bake. But my naan is soft and puffy, you can cut them in half and make a sandwich (look a bit like pita bread but it’s softer). So, if you want different texture, just put them directly into oven after shaping them. I always make a sandwich from this bread, but if you like use it to accompany your curry, it will be good too.
Naan Bread
Make 8 flat bread

14oz/ 397g All-purpose flour plus more for work surface
⅓oz/ 11g Instant yeast
6floz/ 180ml Water
2floz/ 60ml Clarified butter, plus more as need
2oz/ 57g Plain yogurt (do not use low fat)
1 Egg
1oz/ 28g Sugar
1½tsp/ 7.5g Salt

In a bowl of electronic mixer, combine the flour and yeast. Add the water, butter, yogurt, egg, sugar, and salt, and mix on low speed for 4 minutes. The dough should be very elastic but still wet.
Take the dough onto the floured work surface shape it into a round ball, (you may need more flour, about 3-4 tbsp) place the dough in buttered bowl cover with damp cloth. Let the dough rise until double, about 1 hour.
Divide the dough into 3oz/85g pieces. Preshape the dough into rounds. Let the dough rest about 15-20 minutes. Start by the first piece that you divided and rounded, gently stretch each piece of dough into an oval shape.

Place the bread on parchment lined sheet pan. Let rise about 30 minutes or until the dough puff up a bit. Bake in preheat 425°F/ 219°C oven, until golden brown and puff about 10 minutes.
Brush with melted butter immediately after take out of the oven.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Coffee and Coconut Cream Agar-agar

Agar-agar is easy to use and not tricky as gelatin, because after it set it will stay that way, for the place like Thailand, hot weather is not an option. Agar-agar is not afraid of heat and takes it out of the fridge and taste the sweet and cold jelly in a hot day is very refreshing. The texture is much firmer and if you never try it before this recipe is a good one to start.

Coffee and Coconut Cream Agar-agar

About 8 small cups (5.5x5cm)

5 g Agar-agar
1 cup Coconut cream
3 g Salt
13 g white sugar for coconut cream part
120 g white sugar for coffee part
2 ½ tablespoons instant coffee mix with ¼ cup boiling water
1 ¾ cups water

Make coconut cream part by mix ½ cup of water with 2 g of agar-agar in small pot over low heat until boil and the agar-agar dissolved, mix the sugar (13g) coconut cream and salt, wait until boil. Take the pan out of the heat and put the pot in a bowl of warm water (to prevent it harden before the entire thing set).

Now make the coffee part by mix 1½ cups water with 3 g of agar-agar in a small pot over low heat until boil and the agar-agar dissolved, mix the sugar (120g), the coffee mixture, and wait until boil. Take the pan out of the heat and put the pot in a bowl of warm water (to prevent it harden before the entire thing set).

Now pour the coconut mixture in to the cup alternate with the coffee mixture (wait until each layer almost set before pouring the next, if wait until set firmly they will not gel together, but if too soon both of the mixture will mix together), until you using all of them (about 1tablespoon per layer)

To unmould, run a small knife around the edges of the agar-agar and gently shake free

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Birthday Boy
Today is my nephew’s birthday, and what the birthday boy wants is not a cake (he doesn’t like any kind if icing), so he asks for cookies. I don’t know what to make so last night I give him sometimes with my books, and he show me this one “chocolate chip sand cookies”. This recipe is from ................ I start early in the morning so I want to finish it before he wake up, and yes by freezing the dough the time is much shorter (1 hour in the freezer or 5 in the refrigerator). The result is sweet, crunchy cookie and what the birthday boy says, he loves it, and I’m happy.
About 4 dozens cookies

4 cups
bleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon
baking soda
1 teaspoon
cream of tartar
½ teaspoon
½ pound (16 tablespoons or 2 sticks)
unsalted butter, softened
1 cup
plain vegetable oil (such as canola)
1 cup
superfine sugar
1 cup
confectioners’ sugar
large egg yolks
2½ teaspoons
vanilla extract
1 ¾ cups
miniature semisweet chocolate chips
About 2 cups
granulated sugar
Sift the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt onto a sheet of waxed paper.
Cream the butter in the large bowl of electric mixer on moderate speed for 3 minutes. With the mixer on moderate speed, beat in the oil in a thin, steady stream mixture.
Add the superfine sugar and beat for 2 minutes on moderate speed. Add the confectioners’ sugar and beat for 2 minutes longer.
Blend in the egg yolks and vanilla extract. The mixture will look lightly creamy. On low speed, blend in half of the sifted ingredients. Mix in the chocolate chips. Blend in the other half of the sifted ingredients mix until the flour particles are absorbed.
Scrape the dough onto a baking pan lined with plastic wrap, press into a flat cake, cover, and refrigerate for about 5 hours, or until firm enough to shape without sticking. Or, freeze the dough for about 1 hour, or until firm (as I do).
Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C) in advance of rolling the cookies. Line several cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Take up heaping 2-tablespoon of dough and roll them into balls. Gently roll the balls in the granulated sugar to coat lightly. Place the dough balls 2 to 2½ inches apart on the prepared pans. Flatten each cookie lightly and evenly with the tines of a fork, dipping the fork in a little granulated sugar to keep it from sticking to the dough.
Bake the cookies for 15 to 16 minutes, or until set and golden, rotate the pans halfway through baking. Let the cookies stand on the pans for 2 minutes, then transfer them to cooling racks, using a wide offset metal spatula.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Penne with Prawns Cream and Tomato

Last night I read this book  ................ I want some recipe that’s easy to make and quick (with the ingredient that I have on hand, no shopping trip). And I found this one, I know I cheating by using freeze prawns (but if it’s good quality, it’s can be delicious and convenient). The result is great (and if you use fresh prawn, I think it will be better). It takes about 15-20 minute to finish this dish, with freeze prawn, it’s easier.
Penne with Prawns Cream and Tomato
Serve 3 (this number again)

40 0 (1 /2 OZ)
200 0 (7 OZ)
Tinned tomatoes with juice, pureed
250 G (9 OZ)
2 Teaspoons
Olive oil
500 G (1 LB 2 OZ)
Raw Prawns , peeled and deveined (I use already peeled and deveined freeze prawns)
Garlic cloves, peeled and squashed a bit
2 Tablespoons
2 Tablespoons
Single cream
1 Tablespoon
Chopped parsley
big handfuls of freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
Melt half of the butter in a small pan and, when it is sizzling, add the tomatoes. Season with salt end a dash of pepper and then cook over medium heat for about10 minutes, until it is thick.
Cook the pasta in a large pan of boiling salted water following the packet instructions. Meanwhile, heat a large non-stick frying pan over high heat. Add the oil and the rest of the butter and, when it is sizzling, add the prawns and garlic. Over the highest heat possible, cook the prawns until they are quite bright and the undersides are golden and crusty in places.
Turn them with tongs and, when they are cooked, scatter them with salt. Add the calvados and cook until it evaporates.
Drain the pasta, keeping a cupful of the cooking water. Add the tomato sauce to the prawns, along with the cream and parsley Heat until just bubbling. Add the pasta and toss well. If it seems like you need it, add a little of the cooking water to help the sauce coat the pasta (and I think you need it because the sauce is not much). Serve immediately with a grinding of pepper. Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan cheese (if use).

Friday, December 7, 2007


Before cutting it, it's look a lot like lemon tart, but taste like Japanese sweet. Ok, it’s not a kitchen disaster because it’s still good (too sweet for me but for other people they said it's fine) but when I imagine about it I forget that the chocolate topping has an egg yolk, so after adding the yolk, I got this color. It’s starting from my need to try the recipe from this book: ...................... and while I read the chestnut and chocolate tartlet recipe, my sister (who love to eat white chocolate very much) told me if I can change the topping, she willing to be the taster. Oh, yes I reply without thinking of anything else, lucky me that the taste still good but if making it again I wish I cut the chocolate amount down by half, to make it less sweet. So, if you want to make the tart with Dark chocolate, just replace the same amount of the white chocolate, and I think your tart will look far more beautiful than mine.
The sweet pastry is a lot, now I have 3-(18 cm) tart shell in my freezer (but the pastry is easy and delicious, thank you Rose) unlike other kind of pastry this can be roll after making it because it’s not a pâte sucrée, it’s pasta frolla from Italian recipe, it’s very easy to work with too.
Enough for 2 x 28cm (11 inch) tart cases (crusts)
500g (3¼ cups)
all-purpose flour
120g (generous ⅔cup)
caster sugar
320g (scant 1¼ cups)
unsalted butter , plus extra for greasing

pinch of salt
egg yolks
1 teaspoon
natural vanilla extract
Using a food processor, process the flour, sugar, butter and salt for about 10-12 seconds until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs, then put the mixture in a bowl.
If making by hand, put the flour, sugar and salt in a bowl, cut the butter into pieces and work it into the flour with your fingertips.
Make a well in the middle of the flour- and-butter mixture and add the egg, egg yolks and vanilla extract. Stir to incorporate the flour evenly until you have to begin using your hand.
Bring the dry and wet ingredients together. Dust work surface with flour, remove the dough from the bowl and knead it on the floured surface for a few minutes until it is smooth and homogeneous.
It is now ready to be rolled. Roll out the dough to a thickness of about 5mm (1/4 inch).
Carefully lift it up with the rolling pin, and ease it into the tart tin.
I make 8 tartlets (to use in this recipe) with half of the pastry and 3-(18 cm) tart shell with other half. You have to chill the tart cases for at least 30 minutes before baking
Serves 8

For the chestnut filling
Tartlet Cases
150g (2/3 cup)
cream cheese
500g (1 pound 2 ounces)
sweetened chestnut purée
eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon
brandy or whisky

For the chocolate cream
180g (6½ ounces)
roughly chopped white chocolate
185 ml (scant 3/4 cup)
single (light) cream

egg yolk, beaten

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4
Bake blind the pastry for about 20 minutes until the pastry is just turning golden. Remove and keep the oven switched on.
In a bowl, mix together the cream cheese and chestnut purée. Add the eggs and brandy or whisky.
Fill the tartlet cases with the mixture and bake until just set about 25 minutes. Take out of the oven and set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, make the chocolate cream. Put the chocolate and cream in a saucepan and cook over a low heat, stirring, until the chocolate has melted.
Remove from the heat and immediately beat in the egg yolk.
When the tartlets have cooled, remove them from their tins and spread the chocolate cream over the chestnut filling.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007


By Lisa Yocklson

Baking by Flavor” is the first introduction for me to know Lisa Yocklson (I will tell you about it later because it’s not as beautiful as this one, but full of information and recipes. You can see that I love beautiful cookbook even I don’t know what inside, I always take them home, but lucky me, most of them turn out well when I have a chance to test the recipe). This book is “very beautiful” it’s my first impression and I already have her book, so I think that I can trust her.

At first I want to write down the contents of the book, but it’s so long and you may feel like read the index of some book, so I will make it short. This book is all about the chocolate as the name, the techniques to treat it right (because chocolate is so tricky, too much heat or moisture can ruin it), the flavor, brand of each kind of chocolate, where to buy it (about 15 pages on this information) and the additional ingredients that make chocolate more delicious. Then follow by the long list of 200+ recipes, start by brownies, cake, layers cake, bread, pancakes, cookies, chocolate with other things like nut, toffee, oh, and much more. Most of the recipe has a beautiful photo with it.

If you are the people who only want a recipe you will feel it’s too much, but this book is good for people who love information, a lot of it, the author includes all the information that she know and test (even the brands of the butter that will make chocolate taste better), this is her writing style. I like this book, for the information and beauty, and for my own reason, I really love chocolate.

Picture from ChocolateChocolate

Update 11/12/2007 recipe test: CHOCOLATE CHIP SAND COOKIES


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