December 22, 2011

East meets West Macarons Tower/Sireh Junjung for my sister engagement

My sister got engaged last weekend! Yippee!! :D 

I made this macarons tower as her Sireh Junjung. For those who don't know, Sireh Junjung is a must have gift in every hantaran gifts in Malay wedding/engagement. The traditional Sireh Junjung usually consists of sireh leaves and flowers, aesthetically arranged in a decorated tray. So instead of the same o same o sireh junjung, I decided to fusion it with macarons tower. My dad loves the fusion idea and called it East meets West Sireh Junjung :)

The macarons tower consists of two parts. The bottom part was pinned with Sireh leaves, I folded it to make it looked like a pineapple skin (sort of). The upper part was the macarons part and I arranged arrays of mini roses of beige and pink in colors in between two parts.Oh how I wish I have detailed pictures of this tower to show you.

I think the macarons arrangement on the tower was a bit loose. Time wasn't on my side. Sigh. I was so busy in the kitchen, I didn't have extra time to fix the mac tower...and the saddest part is... I didn't get to snap any photos from my camera. tsk tsk. double sigh.

These photo were taken by my soon to be my bro-inlaw, Azfar. Thank you, STBMBIL. he he 
My sister, Dya and her fiancĂ©, Azfar.
 Hantaran gifts from our side. My sister did her hantaran gifts all by herself. The macarons tower was my gift to her. 
 Hantarans gifts from both sides.
 Salam mitak restu dari my mom. 
My parents and my sis. 
 Isn't she lovely?
 Both families. 
 The engagement dais. More like a wedding dais if you asked me. hihi My sister did this by herself. 
My sister, Dya. She's taken guys. ;p 
Congratulations Dayah & Azfar!!

December 12, 2011

Hodugwaja-Cheonan Walnut Cakes

To be honest, I don't know much about this cake. All I know is that this little snack is Cheonan`s trademark walnut-flavored cake known as Hodugwaja. (Note: Cheonan is a city located in the northeast corner of South Chungcheong, a province of South Korea-Wikipedia)

This small cake has the size and shape of a walnut. The filling consists of red bean paste (if I'm not mistaken) and a small slice of walnut. Hubby's distributor bought a box of this cake for us while they were visiting their clients in Cheonan. 

To me, the dough part tastes like a Malay Bahulu. :)
Believe it or not, this is the only Korean snack we brought home huhu I was planning to buy rice cakes and whatnots.. but.. one restless little soul called Adam wasn't keen on taking a break. He didn't want us to make any stop at all. He he ikutkan aje.. 
Anyway, thank you very much to those who left comments on my previous post. I'll write more on that on my next entry. he he We did had fun, despite all those little 'challenges' caused by Adam..and sometimes me.. =P I still have a bunch of photos, waiting to be resized. Just hold on.

December 1, 2011

Seoul: It's about Adam.

Yep, you read it right. We're in Seoul rite now. It's a business trip cum holiday. Business for Husband, pleasure for both Adam and 

There's nothing like holiday, at first. The journey from Changi to Incheon was rough. It was a midnight flight and Adam was a first timer. Duh..I should've had an early vision for the upcoming event, but I didn't. Where did my instinct go?  Half an hour into the flight, Adam's temperature started to build up. The temp reading was 39.4. It made me anxious a lil bit. Be cool, I reminded myself. It must be the sweater. He must be hot, since the air was a bit stuffy in our area. Adam being Adam, sigh.. he refused to let the sweater off.  I just let him be. 

Second hour on the flight, he threw up. I felt irritated as I cleaned it up. I should have had rip that sweater earlier. Still blaming the sweater. We took another half an hour to persuade him into changing into new clothes. Luckily, we bring spare clothes. And the thermometer. 

We changed him, rinsed off the dirty clothes, asked plastic bag for it, and few minutes after that, he threw up on us, and continued to do so for the next hour. It was a puking saga. I felt helpless and sad, as I watching him squeezing his tummy muscles out for nothing. He was REALLY sick and I couldn't do anything. The wafting smell was bad at that moment. We ignored the complaining passenger and continued to do our job as a parent. Adam needs us. He was having a motion sickness, indeed. 

Luckily (again), our seats were located right next to the toilet. We ended up staying at the toilet area, and it was a war zone for us. We had him sit without shirt and let him puked whenever he wanted. Poor boy, pity him. I really felt helpless. I was at the end of the rope when I took out my Minyak Cap Kapak Oitment,dropped a few on tissues paper, and let him smelled it. Alhamdulillah, it helped him a bit. I should have bring his own oitment on board next time. We wrapped him with the airline blanket and I let my husband hold him. He slept on his daddy's shoulder for almost an hour. Mind you, he's 14kg toddler, and what my husband did amazed me. I holded him for mere minutes(when Husband took his turn to eat), and I started aching here and there. 

The whole experience has taught us lot of things. First, bring spares clothes for everyone. I ended up like a zombie with puke smell after we landed. Secondly, expect all the worst nightmares before you fly with you little one (s). Bring every single thing needed. Google it. Since we just discovered (the hard way), that Adam is prone to motion sickness, we will have to find some anti-nausea med before we fly home. (So far, it's hard to find pharmacy that sell 'everything under the roof' here) .

All the crappy things about stewardess and passengers with kids won't help you were nonsense in our case. The SIA stewardess assisted us from A to Z. She helped me cleaned up the mess, covering our seat, drying up Adam's clothes, and she even sprayed some air freshener to clear up the smell, at our request. She keep asking me "are you okay, do you need anything?" (My face read HELP ME all the time, probably..ha ha ) Thank you SIA stewardesses. The chief crew even asked whether we wanted any medical help on board. We wanted to pursue it at first, but after everything was clear, we decided not to. There was another mother with kids (eight kids to be exact) on board, and she asked me what happened and how am I doing.. she was on her way to the toilet and  remember our war zone? When I was back in my seat, the nice lady came near me and offered me a Panadol syrup for Adam. There's still love and concern in this world. Alhamdulilah. The stewardess gave me the tablet one earlier, and it was hard to get Adam to chew them.   Since Adam was sleeping at that time, I told her we'll get it from her if we need it. She's a mother to eight kids, no wonder she bring everything on board.. she must have learnt a lot. :D

Last but not least, both parents should be cool with the whole situation. I know I'm not. I was the one with the helpless, sad and irritated feeling at the whole things, the whole time. My husband, on the other hand, is a great man with high patience and passion. Thank God for that. He had to take care not only Adam but ME. Yep.. I know.. silly me..I'm so gonna have to master on self-control more.. isk isk Bottom line..We are very lucky to have him as a husband and daddy, respectively. :)  

Anyway, Adam is not having fun, at the moment. He keep throwing tantrum here and there. Everything is new to him..We went for a walk yesterday, and the cold weather was indeed cold. Adam being Adam (again), refused to wear his thermal clothing. He keep screaming at me. Ouch. (And my patience is thinning..oh sabar sabar..) No cap, no gloves, no scarf, no ear puffs, no stroller's rain cover. He wants to wear his long john, jacket and hood only. That's after a loooooong struggle with him. I'm totally blank and I have no ideas on how to persuade him into wearing his cap and gloves. Oh please pour me some tips, or we have no holiday at all. =P 

November 24, 2011

Thursday- Caramelized Onion & Mushroom Tart

My husband is always a karipap man, not much of a cake person. I guess he has a thing with savory side of kuih muih, compared to me, who is always on the sweet side. But I always ignored him, and keep on baking sweet stuffs. haha 

Yesterday morning, he'd asked me to stop (or slow down? can't remember) making those sweetilicious. How dare he said something like that, it hurts my inner baking soul. ;p He asked me to make more of 'his type of kuih muih'. I.e. goreng pisang with crunchy batter, karipap, jemput2 (pakoras), roti canai, cucur badak, epok2, popia, karipap, karipap, karipap ;p. Bottom line, those kuih muih with 'tepung' since he loves munching those crusty dough. 

Those kuih are so common, and some are not blog-worthy ;p I sighed and start Googling on something different than karipap. (Ok, you can start count the word karipap now). I landed with this yummy looking mushroom tart. The taste is unbelievably SEDAP. +1000 points for the great combination of mushroom, caramelized onion, parsley and butter. We both love it. Never mind, let him win today. I'll bake my type of brownies tomorrow ;P Who's the cook&baker anyway?

Caramelized Onion & Mushroom Tart
(Recipe is loosely adapted from BBCGoodFood's Mushroom Tartlets)
Serving: 4


375g block all-butter puff pastry (RC Note:I used Borg's, Kawan and Gardenia's are just too buttery for me..)
flour, for dusting
25g butter
300g mixed wild mushrooms or just one type, cleaned and sliced
25g Parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), finely grated
small handful parsley leaves, chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 red onion, chopped (RC Note: I added this)
1 egg, beaten

  1. Roll the pastry out on a floured surface and cut out to desired shapes. (RC Note: Blind bake them first to avoid soggy)
  2. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Heat a large frying pan until hot, then add the butter and fry the onion until it nearly caramelized  then add in mushroom. Sauteed until there is no liquid left in the pan. Season, then take off the heat and mix mushrooms with the Parmesan, parsley and garlic.
  3. Score a 1cm border around the edge of each tart, then spoon the filling into the centre circle. Brush the edge with beaten egg, then bake the tarts for 20 mins until puffed up and golden. Serve immediately.

November 22, 2011

Black and White Wednesday- Fig Tart

The tart shell recipe is taken from Ijan of Blogresepi while the custard is from Evan's Kitchen Ramblings' creme patisserie, which is adapted from Donna Hay's Modern Classics 2.

This is just a quick note to let you know that I'm still here, alive. I'm busy with packing and planning for our holiday trip. Yeay@holiday..Boo@packing.. 

I've been a bit under the weather lately and the fridge seems to be my BFF, at the moment. Trust me, I hate this new symbiotic relationship I'm having with my fridge (not to forget, the weighing scale). Why is it so hard to lose weight? *staring at above photo* Hmm..I know. 

As for the fig tart, I won't repeat it. Ever. Don't get me wrong, I love the shell and the creme patisserie, but I hate the whole combination taste. Weird. The first bite was my last. I should've had try Sis Muna Mahdzar Fadaaq's Baked Figs with Ricotta Walnut and Maple Syrup instead. 

I love browsing at fig tarts/figs photos out there. The main reason why I made this tart at the first place ;) Too bad, it didn't turn out quite like those delicious photos..

The Black and White Wednesday is inspired from The Well-Seasoned Cook's Black and White Wednesday-A weekly Culinary Photo Event.

November 16, 2011

Wordless Wednesday- Chocolate Tart with Peach Topping

Who gets the last slice?

You can get the recipe from my previous entry here.

November 14, 2011

On Family and Food IV

We spent the long weekend in my hometown. The Eid weekend. Raya Haji was still a Raya Haji to us, nothing fancy like the real Raya. The same ritual of Raya food feast and morning pray. No new cloth etc. We didn't do any qurban this year, but my my Andak's family did.  They chose to qurban one big buffalo and I got a small chunk out of it. Alhamdulilah. For me, buffalo meat tastes better than beef. I love them in kurma. 

Adam,  as usual, being frappy all the time, chasing his grandma chickens around, and being chased by his aunties after that. Good news. My mom is a grandma to nine Boer's babies this year. Bad news. We didn't get to check out the newborns. I bet they're all adorably cute.  

We got back in Singapore on Wednesday, with a loaded trunk of goodies. My mom homegrown's, of course. Kaffir lime leaves, the blue ginger, curry leaves, stalks of lemongrass, pandan leaves, more and more.....those which cost $ for me to buy here, and free to my mom. I wish I could plant those in pots. Dream on. 

Anyway, here's some photos of food I made from my mom's homegrown. 
Kampung eggs. I love half-boiled of them. I cooked some as masak lemak kuning, for Adam. 

Masak Lemak Kuning with eggs, garnishes with turmeric leaves.

Prawn sambal with petai. Make sure you listerine your mouth twice or more after you eat petai
and my mom's rendang itik (duck rendang). She cooked it. I bought the itik only. he he 

Husband is away again. Sigh. It's 8:30 am. I had to wake Adam up for his playgroup class. He'll be a bit mamai
and hopefully I get to persuade him for a bath... without tricks. 

Oh my. Here's come my routine without him.

November 3, 2011

Thursday- Lemon Curd

The recipe is taken from my Lemon Cream Tart entry here. 
I'm eating it now with buttered toast.. 
Be jealous =P

November 2, 2011

Wordless Wednesday- Express Chicken Briyani

Recipe as per told by Miss ADABI Briyani Powder :D

November 1, 2011

Tuesday- Lemon Cream Tart

Lemon curd. Why is it so hard to make one? The step by step instructions were quite clear, so where did I go wrong? My first attempt was a BIG mess. It was overly sweet, too tangy and gloppy. Yuck. Followed by another failure with dreadful curdling. Sigh. I missed the right thickness (by few stirs only) as Adam was shouting calling for me. Why did he always call me during critical times? Should I blame him for my tragic lemon curd? ;p

Of course, giving up was never part of me lol, I tried again for the third time. I chose to follow Little Teochew's Easy Lemon Curd recipe since the  word 'Easy' on the title is quite convincing.  Instead of cooking it as a stovetop custard, I turned to ban Marie method and did the stirring thingy during wee hours of the morning, so nobody (read: both men) can disturb me. Voila, I got a bowl of lemon curd... and it suits my palate perfectly. Bonus. The combination of eggs, lemon, butter and sugar finally gave in to a smooth and silky curd. Phew~

Back to my first intention, it's time to make lemon tart. So I whipped 100ml of heavy cream and fold a dollop of lemon curd to it. Yummy. As for the crust, I loosely followed Ijan of Blogresepi's recipe. I've halved the flour and subs it with ground almond. (Thanks Ijan! I did try the original recipe tho, 2 thumbs up for it!)

According to Ju of Little Teochew,  the curd will last for a week in a fridge, and 2 months in the freezer. I've a bowl of it in my fridge now, and Im thinking of eating it buttered toast, scones, maybe turn a portion of it as a lemon cake, a cupcake filling, a cake topping and many more things. Yeah, it's overwhelming, but for now, let me just enjoy a slice of lemon tart with my little man :) 

Lemon Curd Recipe 
- 50 to 60g unsalted butter (more butter will make it smoother, but at the same time, fattier too ... you decide)
- 200 to 225g sugar (depending how sweet or tart you like it)
- 2 eggs
- 2 egg yolks
- 120ml fresh lemon juice (RC Note: 100ml will do)
- 1 tsp grated lemon zest, or more if you like (depending on how strong you want the flavour of lemon)(RC Note: I put 1/2 tsp only)

1. In a large bowl, whisk all the ingredients except the butter*. Mix well. Place the bowl over a bain-marie** (water bath) and stir constantly. The mixture may look curdled, but it will smooth out as it cooks.
* If you want a more subtle taste of lemon, do not add the zest at this stage. Set aside with the butter.

2. Once the mixture thickens - it should leave a path on the back of a spoon - turn off the flame and add butter in 2 or 3 additions. If you have not added in your lemon zest, add it in now and stir to mix well.

3. Allow the curd to cool slightly before transferring to a clean jar or bowl. Make sure it is covered to prevent a skin from forming. Chill in the refrigerator. The curd will thicken further as it cools. 

Lemon Cream recipe

100ml heavy cream-whipped
A dollop of lemon curd.

Fold a dollop of lemon curd into whipped cream. Ready to use.

Tart crust recipe (adapted from Blogresepi's recipe)

October 31, 2011

Monday-The Classic Songs

I spent half of my Sunday in the kitchen, making Spiral Karipaps and Jellies. Those are made for my MIL's birthday celebration at my SIL house. I really took my time while preparing the food.. And listening to the classics while doing so was very relaxing. I was trapped in my own world for few hours. A blissfull hours indeed.

Switched on my iPod,  and P. Ramlee's voice quavered into the whole kitchen:

Getaran jiwa
Melanda hatiku
Tersusun nada
Irama dan lagu..

Next, Saloma and P.Ramlee's version of Begawan Solo:

Bengawan Solo
Riwayatmu ini
Sedari dulu jadi
Perhatian insani..

Followed by renditions of Bengawan Solo, sang by various artist in many languages. One of them is a lullaby-esque version of Begawan Solo, performed by Siti Nurhaliza and Noh Hujan. Definitely my favorite. 

After done with those food, we packed and left home for the party. (and Begawan Solo kept playing in my head for the rest of the day. He he)

Happy Birthday, Mak. :D Semuga pjg umur and bahgia slalu...

Another well-spent weekend. How was your's?

October 27, 2011

Thursday- One-Pot Chinese Chicken Rice

1. Being a mom to an active toddler with picky palate is tiring. The struggle of feeding him never seem to end, and sometime I'm exhausted with worry. :/ I read somewhere, that a child will eat when they're hungry. If they don’t eat, they are not hungry. But that doesn't seem to ease my worry. Indeed, I'm a mom. 

2. As for the chicken dish, two words describe it best, comforting and delicious. With that, I vowed to make this meal a regular. Besides, who need to cook a fancy stuff when nobody is there to eat it. :/ Husband..cepatlah pulang...

    One-Pot Chinese Chicken Rice 
    (Loosely adapted from Donna Hay's recipe at Lifestyle Food)
    Serves 2

    3 cups (750ml) chicken stock- I boiled the whole chicken with   
    ginger and garlic, then used the stock. 
    6 slices ginger-approx
    4 cloves garlic, halved-approx
    1 long green chilli, sliced
    1½ cups (300g) jasmine rice- 1 pot of rice
    4 x 125g chicken thigh fillets, halved- I used whole chicken
    4 green onions (scallions), sliced
    1 cup coriander (cilantro) leaves-omit
    soy sauce, to serve

  1. Place the stock, ginger, garlic and chilli in a deep frying pan over high heat and bring to the boil.
  2. Add the rice and stir once to distribute evenly over the bottom of the pan. When the stock comes back to the boil, add the chicken.
  3. Cover, reduce heat to low and cook for
  4. 20 minutes or until the rice has absorbed the stock and the chicken is tender. (RC's Note: I cooked till the rice is ready, then glazed the chicken with a mixture of dark +light soya sauce,honey, oyster sauce and a bit of orange marmalade, and popped it in the oven.-you'll get a crispy skin with this!
  5. Top the chicken and rice with the onion and coriander and serve with soy sauce.

October 26, 2011

Black and White Wednesday- Bunashimeji Mushroom

Bunashimeji Mushroom

"You must grow like a tree, not like a mushroom"
~ Janet Erskine Stuart

The Black and White Wednesday is inspired from The Well-Seasoned Cook's Black and White Wednesday-A weekly Culinary Photo Event. 

October 18, 2011

Tuesday-Zuccotto, a Birthday Treat

Does one needs a birthday cake on his/her birthday? The answer is no, if you're asking my husband. He's so over on this kindda birthday celebration and whatnot. 

So instead of Google-ing for a perfect birthday cake, I opted for a dessert and found this. A Zuccotto. Such an alien name, isn't it? For me, at least. I saw it, for the first time, at, a picture submitted by Bakedbree.comSuch an elegant dessert with less steps and ingredients. It got me at hello. I knew straight away this would be a great treat for husband's birthday, which is today btw :) Okay, no mushy birthday wishes here yet. I'm not going to parade all your goodness here, darling ;)

Okay back to dessert, where was I? According to Wikipedia, Zuccotto is an Italian dessert with origins in Florence. Zuccotto is a semi-frozen, chilled dessert made with brandy, cake and ice cream. It can be frozen, then thawed before serving. This dessert is traditionally made in a special pumpkin-shaped mold (Zuccotto means "little pumpkin" in Italian). It is widely believed to have been inspired by the dome of Florence's duomo (the city's main cathedral). Others allude to its shape as closely resembling a cardinal's skullcap or zucchetto. Google for more infos and pictures of this dessert, will you?

As for the husband, Happy Birthday. Enjoy your birthday treat. 

P/s: Could you please learn how to bake a simple cake? I still want one homemade cake for my upcoming birthday.. =P