Sunday, April 27, 2008

Cream Cheese Danish

My husband really likes cream cheese danish, so do I. I got the chance to experiment with a very simple recipe from supposely was meant for breakfast this morning but I overslept (well.. it's Saturday + dearie hubby is not around), so this was my lunch huhuu. Not bad at all. At least I know how to prepare this at home now :P. Sorry honey, I got to eat this without you. Picture above is the cressent roll used to make the danish. The danish was baked in a square baking dish and didn't look tempting enough though the smell was superliciously seducing. So, to be creative, I cut the danish using a cookie cutter, stacked two of them with layered whipping cream in between and brought some contrast with sliced red stawberry. Pretty and yummy :)

Saturday, April 26, 2008

What's cooking?

Nothing special. The tortilla wraps I bought a week ago were still untouched in the food cabinet. But I was craving for exotic asian flavor for dinner. So I end up using some left over of mustard greens, shredded cabbage, carrots and beef; sauted with saseme oil, chopped onion, curry powder, oyster sauce and meggie chicken stock; for the tortilla filling. I unintentionally discovered that this is what they call fusion cooking when I somehow fused the Mexican and Asian style in the cooking! Interesting!
The vegetable beef filling - asian style

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Breakfast at Panera

Almost everytime when Fakhrul is here, we'll cut our eye-shut short for a good breakfast at Panera Bread, or go for the brunch if we oversleep. Fakhrul really like the soup in the bread bowl and the baguette; he said I have to learn how to make it. I think I won't pass up the chance to make the soup but never thought of making bread or baguette myself. (Hmm... anyone has a recipe to recommend?)After all, it was not just the bread and the soup at Panera. Having a breakfast time together is so precious for us as we don't have the chance to do it everyday like every husband and wife should. Eating breakfast out on a beautiful morning, sitting in the cafe, smelling the coffee, chit-chatting.. the moment is just priceless. We can't help but always dreamt of having precious breakfast time like this even when we were old.For now we weren't be able to wake up next to each other every single day; but if we did, the breakfast time might not be more precious than this.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


scooped up with corn tortilla chips.. nyum nyum!!
You can google the recipe but I used elise's.

Cranberry Chicken

My husband is here, so I have to cook heavy meal so he won't complain hehe. So I thought of cooking something to serve with rice because it has been a while we didn't eat rice huhuhu which is wierd because in Malaysia we eat rice everyday hmm.. Then I found this cranberry chicken recipe from a cookbook I bought from Walmart. Suprisingly this chicken seriously tasted like the Malaysian honey spicy chicken which is usually served with tomato rice; only easier to prepare and the chicken is more tender because it was baked. I definitely will do this chicken again! The recipe is:
1 can whole cranberry sauce
1 bottle sweet and spicy honey-french salad dressing
1 pkg dry onion soup mix
4 large chicken quater (or 8 boneless chicken breast halves)

Preheat the oven t0 325 degree F. For sauce, in medium bowl whisk together cranberry sauce, salad dressing and soup mix.

Arrange chicken in 3 qt retangular baking dish. Pour sauce over chicken. Bake, uncovered, for 45 to 60 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink (170 degree F)
We had the chicken with plain jasmine rice. Good enough!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Tuna Tartare

Now that I'm worried about gaining weight since I've been passionately doing my new hobby--cooking, everyday, huhuhu, I tried to cook light meal. Today for lunch, I tried another recipe from Barefoot Contessa cookbook; the Tuna Tartare. I've been dreaming of making this myself for a long time. I really like munching and snacking, so appertizer-type recipes are my favorite. So happy I finally made this, so yummy I can't stop eating. Oh my husband is coming today; he will be my biggest competitor (hmm 'should I save some for him?' jahat tak? hehe)!
Just a shot of some of the ingredients:
The tuna tartare is good to be served with crackers. But I still have some chive biscuits left over from the other day. So I cut the biscuits into thin slices, spread butter on each slice, sprinkled garlic powder; and toasted them in the oven until golden brown at 350 degree F. Bellow is the pictures of the toasted sliced biscuits on a cooling rack.
Suprisingly they turned beautifully like crackers and yummy!!Yeayy!! I'm a happy lady!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Strawberry pie custard tart

1 refrigerated pie crust
1 cup egg (about 3 large eggs)
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1.5 cups milk (I used half and half)
2 cups fresh sliced strawberries (can also use peaches, blueberries, kiwi etc)
Whipped light cream (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degree F. Place pie crust in 9-inch pie plate, pressing crust firmly into bottom and up sides of plate. Flute edge. Prepare the crust as directed from the box (might need to pre-bake).

Beat egg, sugar, vanilla in large bowl with wire whisk until blended. gradually beat in milk until combine. Carefully pour filling into prepared crust.

Bake 40 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool completely on wire rack.

Chill until firm, about 2 hours. Arrange fruit on top. Cut pie into 8 slices, top each slice with wipped cream just before serving.

I screwed up one pie crust huhuhu.. (luckily it comes with 2 crusts in a box). Because it was still eatable, I put the pieces into ramekins and poured some custard tart on top of it and baked it in the oven. Hehehhe still eatable :

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Chive biscuits

Can't believe it was so easy to make biscuits. Got back for lunch, pepared these biscuits for around 40 minutes; and now I got to run for a meeting. I'll write the recipe later. Chow!
Ok, I'm back. These biscuits are good by themselves or serve with creamed soup or chowder. Because my kitchen is so empty now, I'd to be creative and ate them with sardine (canned) tomato/chilli sauce. I cooked the sardine sauce with sauted onion, garlic, green pepper and a bit of tamarind paste and salt.
Ok here's the recipe for the biscuits (from Barefoot Contessa cookbook):
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon sugar 1/4 pound (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, diced
3/4 cup half-and-half
1/2 cup chopped fresh chives or fresh parsley leaves
1 egg mixed with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Combine the flour, baking powder,
salt, and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the butter and mix on low speed until the butter is the size of peas. With the mixer on low, add the half-and-half and beat until just mixed. Add the chives and mix until just combined.
Dump the dough out on a well-floured board and knead lightly into a rectangle 3/4-inch thick. Cut out rounds with a 2 1/2-inch round cutter and place on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Brush with the egg wash.

Bake for 20 to 22 minutes, until the tops are browned and the insides are firm. Serve warm.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Snacking healthily

Put baby carrots on thoothpicks. Dip into melted chocalate coating, (garnish with some ground peanuts if you wish) and drizzle some hershey's syrup before serving. Excellent for carrot and choc lovers!

Egg and beef fajita

1) In large skillet, heat 1 tbsp vegetable oil, saute 1 onion chopped and 1 bell pepper cut into thin strips, until tender. Move to one side and add one tbsp butter, scramble 1 egg. Set aside.
2) In the same skillet, sear 1 lb thinly sliced beef
3) Add fajita seasoning mix and 1/4 cup water; blend well, simmer 3-5 mins, stirring occasionally.
4) Return vegetable into skillet, mix well with beef.
5) Wrap beef vege, egg and some shredded mozarella cheese in warm flour tortilla.
6) Cut diagonally for serving.

Gratin, a simple one

Wanted to try the new ramekins I just bought. So I baked a simple corn and beef gratin. I'm so lazy to write the recipe but here's how to make it:

1) Saute ground beef, sliced onions and kernel corn with butter. Add dry oregano, salt and pepper. Set aside.
2) For the white sauce, melt butter, add flour, stir well. Slowly add milk, stir constantly to avoid lumps. Cook until the sauce thick (can add chicken stock for more taste or simply use campbell soup).
3) Mixed the sauted ingredients with the white sauce and fill into ramekins or oven-safe dish. Top with bread crumbs (and shredded cheese as you wish).
4) Bake at 350F for about 10 minutes

I'm pretty sure you could google for better recipe to make gratin. This one works for me. At least my housemate likes it :P

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Winner winner, chicken dinner!

Okay I got the phrase 'winner winner chicken dinner' from the new movie: 21. Went to watch the movie last week with hubby. It was a great movie, I like it. Thinking of the phrase, I feel like having some chicken for dinner. I looked at the parmesan chicken sticks recipe from Barefoot Contessa cookbook I just bought, luckily I pretty much have all the ingredients needed. As usual, I like to tailored the recipe to my taste. I added some curry powder and red chilli powder into the flour mix and also used garlic buttered croutons instead of bread crums. (I should rename them now Spicy Parmesan Chicken Sticks :P)

I pretty much satisfied with the outcome! Yeay!

Spring Cleaning

When I was in the Methodist Girls Secondary School yearssss back in Malaysia I wasn't quite sure why do we have school 'spring cleaning' when we don't actually have a spring season over there. We washed the floor, re-painted the wall, re-arranged the chairs and tables, re-decorated the class, etc etc. Now that I'm living in the part of the world where the climate change is so extreme, spring cleaning makes more sense to me. When it's getting warmer now, I started to re-organize the wardrobe, sorting the suitable cloths to wear, repacking the shoes that might no be useful anymore (even donated some of those to the Goodwill), apparently I actually done some of my spring cleaning. Yeah it makes more sense to me now. But then when it comes to the food, while I'm thinking of making more room in the freezer for icecream, throwing out some molded left over, buying more meat for outdoor grilling etc, I also thought that I shouldn't waste what's still good in there. So I decided to optimally cook whatever I have in the fridge before buying new stuffs as one of my smart spring cleaning strategies.

So the photos are some crab balls I pulled out from the fridge. Sauted them with sesame oil, sweet and sour sauce, tomato sauce, soy sauce, garlic powder and ginger root. Added some raisins to bring on more sweetness in the taste.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Let the Spring begin

This cupcake has been a while in the kitchen. My housmate made this using the Betty Crocker instant mix. It tastes good regardless of how easy to make it! Do cupcakes have always to be pretty?? If yes, then I don't want this buddy to be left out. So I tried to put some 'spring' on her before I decided to take her last breath.
Don't talk, just eat

Okay. These are yam sticks coated with tempura batter (mixed with rice flour, water and a pinch of salt). Please help me get over my guilt by not worry about how much oil I used to fry those :)

The busier, the better

I have learned that the busier I am, the more I actually accomplish. So, cooking lunch or dinner everyday is not an exception for getting myself busier hehe. The only thing is, the more I spend my time at cooking the more I eat. Then I get busier gaining guiltiness of eating so much everyday. Hmmm!! So while I was stuck with my programming work today, here's what I accomplished: Mesh potato with mushroom and melted mozarella. Yumm oo! I eat this with tempura sauce. I know it's wierd but it works for me hehe.The mesh potato actually was the left over from the Twiced baked potato I've made earlier. I tailored the recipe to my taste by adding some sauted mushrooms and onions. I also boiled the potatos instead of baking them to save times. My housemate eat this with thousand island dressing, I know, we all have creative taste :P

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Be Passionate

I'm so bad at writing, it took a while for me to think about what to write in this first entry. But there's a lot of things I'm passionate about in life, thought that writing this blog would help me begin and share!

I love cooking, eating, travelling and photographing, and married to the world's cutest man who actually ventures the same passion (kinda true for eating only). I'm very eager to learn and absorb as much as I can from everyone.
Ok this was my first trial with Ina Garten's recipes: a very simple shortbread recipe. I saw her making this in the food network. I strip-searched my kitchen and seemed like I have all the ingredients to make those. So here it is: