Thursday, December 25, 2014

Cuti-cuti Malaysia ~ Penang

My latest visit to Penang Kek Lok Si temple after 17 years. My last visit was when my boy is 6 months old and now he's already 17. Penang has changed so much. I can't even recognised the temple any more. This huge Bodhisattva is completed in year 2002 and it is built on the hill top of Kek Lok Si temple. Very impressive !

This is how it looks at the lower part of the Bodhisattva, still under renovation.

I'm not sure what this bronze statue called as  The whole thing looks absolutely gorgeous.

It was said that there are 10,000 buddha here in this temple More info here.

   This is Cundi Bodhisattvamore info here.

Now, here is Hean Boo Thean floating temple which is located at Noordin Street Ghaut, Weld Quay area.  The surrounding is quite similar to Pulau Ketam. More exciting view from here & here.





Now, here is the treasure behind the temple. Some of the headgears of the Deities collection. Simply stunning !

Here we are at the Armenian Street, George Town, Penang. It was really crowded along the street especially at a few famous wall art spots.

This descinated wall art located just infront of a Chinese pastry shop, which is selling delicious crispy egg tart and all kinds of 'mung bean' pastry.

Another famous spot

This is one of my favourite catch of the day. This wall art hiding inside a Cendol House along Armenian Street.  Not many of them noticed it cause it looks so real.

Simple and yet cute.

This is the most famous from many of them which was painted by Ernest Zacharevic, a Lithuanian artist..  People are queueing up to take pictures with it. No worried, its free of charge.

This is another gorgeous one but too bad the colour is fading off. Not bad huh ! We managed to visit a few places within five hours and even have time to 'makan-makan' (eat) around in three different places.
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I would like to wish all my readers a very Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Peanut Butter Cookie Cake ~ Baking With Margarine


Cookie cake became so popular this days in United States & United Kingdom.You will definitely out of your mind when you check out the purchasing price over in US & United Kingdom. Its from the range of USD$18.00 to USD$40.00 per piece, from the size of 9" tray to 15" tray and its fully decorated with sugar icing or butter cream according to your like. Here's some info regarding the pricing. Can you imagine when it is transferred into Malaysia ringgit !!!! This delicious creation has been used for many years. I wonder who is this genius creator !!!! I have tried the cookies bar before but that was a long long time ago but not as attractive as this cake. This cookie cake even merrier. Its quick to prepare & easy to handle and super duper fun to decorate it. Bet the kids will fall in love with it immediately. So, here's what I whipped up with my margarine & peanut butter.

Ingredients :
170gm   margarine
125gm   peanut butter
3/4 cup  brown sugar
2 eggs
a few drops of NuNaturals Vanilla Stevia Liquid 
or vanilla essence
2-1/4 cup  all purpose flour
1 tspn   baking powder
1/4 tspn  salt
1 cup  M & M chocolate candy (preferable peppermint)
1/2 cup  chocolate chips

Ingredients for peanut butter cream frosting :
Please refer here.



Method :
Beat margarine, sugar & eggs till well combined. Then stir in flour, baking powder, salt & vanilla.till well cooperated. Next, mix in chocolate candy as desired and then press cookie dough to a 9" baking tray lined with parchment paper. Finally bake at preheated oven 175-180'C for about 20-25 minutes or till brown. Decorate cookie cake once its completely cooled. Keep chilled before serving.

At first, I was quite generous with the frosting. Worried it might get overly sweet. WELL.... it isn't at all ! The frosting actually goes very well with the cake. I should have frost the whole topping.... a little regret.>o<

I think this cake should be quite suitable for the coming Chinese New Year celebration. And its perfect especially for those lazy baker like me..... less work in making those small cookies or festive biscuit. haha.... Badge

Monday, December 8, 2014

Cranberry & Apple Muffins ~ Baking With Margarine

Lately I received a few tubs of margarine from my sister in law which was gifted by her company Felda Malaysia head office. She often receiving all kinds of new products from her company for sampling. How fun was that ! At the same time, I also received a few tubs of margarine from a friend asking me for help to finish up for her. >o< So, you probably will be seeing me baking with margarine for the next few weeks. haha..... Honestly, margarine is tasteless & less oily or creamy compare to butter. So, its quite a challenging task to come out with good baking. However, it might as well giving you an unpredictable delicious bake. Who knows !

So, this is my second baking task with margarine. It happened that a friend sent over some apples the other day which is just perfect for these little muffins. And here's what I did.

Ingredients :
150gm   margarine
3/4 cup  sugar
1 tspn    salt
2eggs
1 cup  milk
1 tspn  vanilla essence / NuNaturals vanilla stevia liquid
2 cups  all purpose flour
1 tspn   baking powder
1/2 tspn   baking soda
1 cup  frozen cranberries
3 apples,  sliced

*1/2 cup brown sugar for topping

Method :
(1) beat margarine, sugar & salt till fluffy pale then add in eggs one at a time & continue beating till smooth.
(2) later then add in milk & flour and mix well.
(3) finally, stir in cranberries & mix well, fill batter to paper cups.
(4) line sliced apples to batter & sprinkle on some brown sugar.
(5) then bake at preheated oven 190'C for about 20 minutes or till brown.

The sugar topping will helps to flavour up the apple instantly once melted. I really enjoy eating it this way.

Yes, the texture of this muffin looks so much difference and that is why most baker prefer using butter than margarine. Luckily, the moisture from fresh fruits help a lot in balancing the whole thing. Hope you guys will love it too ! Enjoy & have a great week ahead everyone.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Peanut Butter Cake With Peanut Butter Frosting

Wow.... time really flies, isn't it ! Its already the final month of 2014 and 2015 is just about four weeks away. Guess, most home already started doing the spring cleaning. Since my girl is not around to help up this year, I am all by my own. Its OK with me cause I'm doing it one part at a time. Slow & steady, no rush ! hehe... But the next thing I know is I came out with two bottles of peanut butter jam from a drawer which is going to be expired soon. These need to be whipped up quick. And peanut butter cake is on the top of the list. I've been wanting to bake something with peanut butter earlier and what a great excuse to make one.

Ingredients for Peanut butter cake :
125gm  margarine
125gm   peanut butter
180gm   brown sugar
5 eggs
a few drops of NuNaturals vanilla liquid
190gm  all purpose flour
2 tspn  baking powder
1/2 tspn  baking soda
1/2 tspn  salt
3 TB full cream milk

Ingredients for Peanut butter frosting :
230gm   margarine
1 cup  peanut butter
2 cup  icing sugar
80ml  heavy cream
(Beat margarine & peanut butter till creamy then add in sugar & cream and continue beating till well combined. Set aside)

Method :
(1) beat margarine, salt, vanilla & peanut butter till creamy then add in sugar and continue beating till well combined.
(2) add in eggs one at a time and keep on beating till everything well mixed.
(3) in another bowl combine flour, baking powder & baking soda and mix well.
(4) now, stir flour mixture & milk into margarine mixture till everything well cooperated..
(5) pour batter to a 8" greased tray & bake at preheated oven 175'C for about 45-50 minutes.
(6) discharge cake 10 minutes after then let the cake cool on rack. Finally, decorate the cake with peanut butter frosting & keep refrigerated before serving.

Peanut butter frosting is one of my favourite. Its simply addictive !

The cake turns out a little dense though but nice overall. I'm wondering if margarine will be the main causes !

Monday, December 1, 2014

Fried Taro Kuih

A friend of honour bought me a gigantic taro one week ago. I used half a kilo of it to make savory steamed taro cake a few days back for our evening meet up and then here's the leftover. Since they can't get this kind of kuih easily in the evening,  I came out with another favourite of them  I decided make my own. This fried taro kuih is quite similar to savory teamed taro cake, the only difference is no solid taro added into the batter. So, it should be a smooth steamed kuih then fried till golden brown. This fried taro kuih is quite popular at southern part of Malaysia.

This is the mashed taro after cooked.

Ingredients :
600-700gm  taro, diced
250gm   rice flour
40gm   wheat starch (tung fun)
40gm  tapioca four
1.2 Litre   water
60gm   dried shrimp, soaked then pounded

Seasoning :
1 tspn  five spice powder
2 tspn   sugar
2 tspn   vegetable granules
1-1/4 tspn   salt (or to your taste)
1 tspn  pepper

*1/2 cup  tapioca flour for coating




Method :
(1) preheat frying pan or wok with 1-1/2 cup  cooking oil, add in taro then fried over high heat till brown. Remove cooked taro from wok.
(2) reduce half of the remaining cooking oil from wok, stir in pounded dried shrimp and saute over medium heat till fragrant.
(3) add in cooked taro & all the seasoning and mix well then add in one(1) cup water & let to boil over medium heat till taro turned soft.
(4) once its done, off the heat and mash the cooked taro, as picture shown above.
(5) in another big bowl, mix together rice flour, wheat starch, tapioca flour & water (1.2 Litre).
(6) now, stir the flour mixture into mashed taro and mix to combine.
(7) then cook the mixture till thicken over low heat. Stir gradually as it might stick to the bottom.
(8) once its ready, spread mixture to a 9" baking tray lined with aluminium foil then steam for 30 minutes or till set
(9) let the cake cool completely before slicing.

The cake turns out great not too soft nor too hard. Should be perfect for deep frying !

Finally, coat each slice of taro cake with thin layer of tapioca flour then fry till brown.

Here's another delicious treat for our friends of honour. Hope they will like it too ! I guess they have no choice cause its raining heavily over here  I don't think they can anything else. haha......

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Sweet & Sour Gluten Puffs

Seitan or wheat gluten is a very popular vegetarian meat substitute that has been eaten in Asian countries for generations. There are so many varieties of preparation for this 'meaty' texture of seitan or wheat gluten and my all time favourite is the sweet & sour gluten puffs. I am a super fan of anything with sweet & sour and this sure will lift up my appetite easily at anytime. So, here's what I did with my recently made gluten puffs.  

Bring a pot of water to boil then add in the fried gluten puffs and immediately off the heat. Let them soaked into hot water for about 15 minutes or till softened then discharge the water. Rinse soaked puffs with cold tap water (with running water) till puffs has actually cooling down. Squeeze out the excess water from the puffs then set aside to drain dry. Later then, I packed some up into a few different bags for storage purposes. These can be kept in the freezer for at least one month or stored in broth and kept in the refrigerator for at least one week.

I am drooling already ! haha.....

Ingredients :
15 pcs  homemade gluten puffs
1 green bell pepper, cut into bite size
1  tomato, cut into bite size
2 slices  pineapple, cut into bite size
1 red chili, cut small (I used bird eyes chilies)
1 cup  tomato sauce (ketcup)
1/2 cup  water mixed with 2 tspn tapioca starch
1-1/2 TB  sugar (or to your taste)
1/2 TB   vinegar

Method :
(1)  preheat frying pan with enough cooking oil, saute bell pepper & pineapple till slightly cooked then add in gluten puffs and continue cooking for another few more minutes.
(2)  now, add in chili, tomato sauce, sugar, vinegar & water mixture, let to boil over medium heat till thickened.
(3) finally, off the heat & stir in tomato to mix well then serve.

The seitan or gluten puff is very chewy, dense & yummy but a little thick compare to the store-bought ones. Doesn't it look so much alike to those tofu puffs? Hopefully, I'll be able to try some other versions of  seitan as well. Probably.... soon ! >o<   Hope you guys will love it too ! Enjoy.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Homemade Gluten Puffs @ Wheat Gluten Food 面筋

Gluten is the strong, sticky, stretchy protein that is form when wheat flour & water mix together. Wheat Gluten or seitan food (麵筋 'mien jin' in Mandarin) is very popular among the vegetarian & non vegetarian all over in Asia, as it can be used in many way of cooking. The Chinese has been using the hydrated wheat gluten or seitan as meat substitute ingredients for more than hundreds of years. However, wheat gluten is not suitable to those whom has digestion problem as you may suffer hours of bloating. I have learnt making this gluten puffs from my neighbour for the very first time when I was 14 and this is my 2nd attempt after 31 years. haha.... Can you believe that ! I was told that by adding in boiling water into flour will helps to generate better wheat gluten. Then later days, I was told to add in salt as well for better result. Anyway, I tried it my way this time and here's what happened.

Ingredients :
1 kg   bread flour / high protein flour
600ml   warm water or hot water
2 TB  salt

*if possible get a packet of wheat gluten flour instead of using bread flour for better result.

Method :  Combine flour together with salt then stir in water to form a soft & smooth dough. Then cover dough & let to rest for 5-8 hours.

The dough became soft & elastic after 5 hours of fermentation. However, it still best to work on the flour the night before and let to rest overnight.

Finally, I started washing the dough after 5 hours of fermentation. The dough must be handle with care. Gently squeeze & knead the dough in a big pot of  water. Try to hold & keep them into one piece at all times. Discharge the milky or starchy water away and repeatedly changing the water for about 8-10 times. Or till the wheat starch has totally melts into water.

This is how the wheat gluten dough looks after changing the water for the 5th time. You can clearly seen the gluten formed. Nicely form into one piece.

Oh wow.... at last, the wheat gluten has turned out perfectly. Make sure the wheat gluten is nicely drained before cutting them.

I then keep the wheat gluten refrigerated for about 2 hours before cutting.

Finally, fry the wheat gluten till golden brown over low heat. Flip the puffs on & off gradually. Make sure they're all nicely expand.

Ta...da..... here's my 100% homemade gluten puffs. Absolutely gorgeous. Aren't they ?
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