Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for May, 2009

Tarte aux Noix

Tarte aux Noix

I searched tarte aux noix online but couldn’t find out much about it because a lot of search results show the websites are not written in English. All I know is that it is a French tart. A lot of pictures online shows the tart is made with walnuts, but the recipe I followed uses almonds. Maybe there are several versions of tarte aux noix??…

Anyway, this recipe is from one of my cookbook titled “Oishiixtu!! Yakikashi” by Ikuko Omori (mine is Chinese version). When I was making the tart shell, I made a boo boo: I thought all tart pans are pretty much standard size, it’s only until I rolled out the dough that I realized my tart pan is quite larger than the suggested 18cm diameter by the recipe. Since the dough could barely cover the bottom of my large tart pan, I opted to use 2 small personal size tart pans instead. Next time when I make it again, I will increase the original recipe portion by 1.5. One thing worth mentioning: the tart shell recipe is very easy and doesn’t require chilling at all, and yet it is crispy and full of almond flavor even the next day. I think I might keep it as my default tart shell recipe.

Tarte aux Noix

Tarte aux Noix

Tarte aux Noix Recipe (makes 1 tart of 18cm diameter, or 2 small personal tarts)

Ingredients:

Tart shell:
2/3 cup cake flour
3 tbsp ground almond (with skin)– toasted
2 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp unsalted butter (room temp.)
1 tbsp beaten egg

Almond cream:
1 tbsp cake flour
2/3 cup ground almond(with skin)– toasted
1/3 cup brown sugar
6 tbsp unsalted butter (room temp.)
1 beaten egg

2 tbsp raisin– soaked in rum, drained
2 tbsp chopped walnuts– toasted
1 tbsp rum
extra almond flakes to sprinkle on top

apricot jam for glazing (I didn’t have apricot jam, so I brushed the tart with remaining beaten egg from tart shell before baking)

Method:

Make tart shell:

  1. Combine cake flour and ground almond then set aside. Using a whisk, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Slowly add beaten egg, whisk to combine.
  2. Sift in 1/3 of flour mixture. Using a spatula gently mix the flour on the top, then press down the flour to the bottom of the bowl to combine. Repeat with the remaining flour in 2 batches. When all mixture starts to form a dough, take it out and shape it to a ball with both hands (avoid kneading the dough!).
  3. Put the round dough between 2 pieces of plastic wrap, roll it out large enough to fit tart pan. Remove plastic wrap and transfer the dough to tart pan and fold inwards any extra dough so all sides have same thickness.
  4. Brush the edge with egg wash, prick the bottom and side of tart and blind bake at preheated 350°F oven for 10-12 minutes. Cool the tart in the tart pan.

Make Tarte aux Noix:

  1. Cream butter and brown sugar with a whisk until fluffy. Slowly add beaten egg and whisk to combine.
  2. Add ground almond. Using a spatula, mix until all incorporated. Sift in cake flour and mix gently until just combined.
  3. Add raisin, walnuts and rum and mix gently.
  4. Pour filling into baked tart shell. Smooth the surface and sprinkle almond flakes on the top. (I brushed the top with remaining egg wash before baking since I don’t have apricot jam for glazing)
  5. Bake at preheated 350°F oven for 15-20 minutes until almond cream is nicely browned. Cool in the pan on the rack. When completely cool, glaze tart with apricot jam.

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

Steamed Chives Dumplings

Steamed Chives Dumplings

I made soon kueh and had some leftover soon kueh skin dough, and I happened to have all ingredients needed to make chives pocket… so this was what I did:

Soon kueh skin dough + Chives filling = Steamed Chives Dumplings

I found the dumplings are not as soft the next day after heating up in microwave, maybe I should use a steamer instead… but I think I’d prefer pan-frying so the skin gets crunchy.

Read Full Post »

Moist Banana Nut Bread

Moist Banana Nut Bread

Tired of making same old same old banana waffles so I gave this recipe a try, and it turned out to be a keeper! This recipe is from Martha Stewart. The bread is very moist (even the next day) because the use of sour cream. It is sweet but there’s also a hint of saltiness which makes it very flavorful. I like extra crunch so I added some more (well… alot more 🙂) walnuts on the top, mmm… yum! No doubt the bread will make it back to our kitchen whenever we have overripe bananas.

Moist Banana Nut Bread-- see chunks of bananas in there?

Moist Banana Nut Bread-- see chunks of bananas in there?

Moist Banana Nut Bread Recipe (makes 1 loaf 9x5x3 pan)– Recipe from Martha Stewart

Ingredients:
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature, plus more for pan
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup mashed very ripe bananas (I used 2 large bananas)
1/2 cup shredded coconut (optional)
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (I used toasted chopped walnuts to mix with the batter, and some extra untoasted walnuts to sprinkle on top)

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 °F. Butter a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan; set aside. Cream butter and sugar in a bowl until light and fluffy. Add eggs, and beat to incorporate.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt. Add to the butter mixture, and mix until just combined. Add bananas, coconut, sour cream, and vanilla; mix to combine. Stir in nuts, and pour into prepared pan. Sprinkle extra nuts on top if using.
  3. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 1 hour 10 minutes. Let rest in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool.

Regina’s tips:

  • Bake the bread on medium low rack so it is position at the center of the oven.
  • Rotate the pan half way through baking to ensure even browning. If the top browns too quickly, cover with foil.

Read Full Post »

I made this little cuties a while back but didn’t get to blog about it till now. I got the recipe from Corner Cafe, but mine are not as pretty as Corner Cafe as I had problem piping the dough, so I end up with a hamburger look instead :)… These little guys are so mini– they are the smallest cookies I have ever baked, which is good for our little ones at home because they can just pop one in the mouth without crumbs falling everywhere. Flavor– the cookies are very fluffy and buttery and really melt in the mouth (I can just eat them plain with a cup of tea), with the pineapple jam filling the cookies is sweet and tangy at the same time, much like pineapple tarts but without lots of work. Don’t have pineapple jam? Make it with raspberry jam, lemon curd, nutella etc… you name it. Cookies can be made ahead of time but put in the filling a few hours before serving, otherwise the cookies won’t be as crispy.

Pineapple Melting Moments

Pineapple Melting Moments

Pineapple Melting Moments (makes 120 mini cookies quarter dollar size, or 60 pairs). Recipe from Corner Cafe.

Ingredients:

(2 sticks) 250g butter, softened
(5-6 tbsp) 55g icing sugar mixture
1 teaspoon pineapple essence, or vanilla extract (optional)
(1 1/2 cup) 225g plain flour
(2/3 cup) 75g wheaten cornflour (wheat starch)

Filling: 60 portions of Pineapple jam rolled into size of small marble balls. Click here for pineapple jam recipe.

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F). Sift plain flour and cornflour together and set aside.
  2. Cream softened butter and icing sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in pineapple essence if using. Add sifted flour mixture and stir through; mixing well.
  3. Spoon mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 1cm star nozzle. Pipe 3cm-wide rosettes, about 3cm apart, onto oven trays. (I had problem piping the dough so I just divided the dough into 120 mini balls and use a fork to make impression on the top).
  4. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until firm and lightly golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool on the oven trays.
  5. When the biscuits are cold, sandwich a pair of biscuits with a ball of filling; pressing lightly to stick together. If you want to taste the initial crispiness of the biscuits, fill them only a few hours before serving, as after one day, the filled biscuits will begin to lose their initial crispiness as they start to absorb some of the moisture from the filling and will become softer but still melt-in-the-mouth.

Read Full Post »

I made this dish for dinner the other night. While my boys were having diced chicken, shrimp and corn kennel medley, Richard and I were enjoying rendang chicken. It was so mouth watering good with a bowl of steamed rice! Rendang chicken was one of the dishes I learned from a cooking class couple of years ago. I am proud of it as I made it all from scratch including the rendang paste. Just like many other Southeast Asian food, it took me quite some time to cook the chicken, mainly because to thicken the sauce and to cook the meat throughly… the result is worthy nevertheless.

Rendang Chicken

Rendang Chicken

Rendang Chicken Recipe (serves 4-6 people)

Ingredients:

8 pieces chicken pieces (legs, thighs, wings, breasts)– trim off extra fat

1 can coconut milk (14oz)

salt to taste

2 stalks lemon grass– use only the white part, bruise or cut into 2 inch length with some slits

2-3 tbsp tamarind juice

Rendang paste:

3-4 tbsp sambal chili paste ( or use 20-30 red dried chilies pre-soaked in water)

15 small shallots

1/2 inch galangal

1 inch ginger

6-8 cloves garlic

Method:

  1. Make rendang paste: grind all paste ingredients in blender until smooth, adding enough water to facilitate blending.
  2. Heat oil in deep frying pan and fry rendang paste  and lemon grass until fragrant and the paste is quite dry. Add 1/4 can of coconut milk and salt and cook until the paste is bubbly and oil starts to come out. (Do not attempt to fry paste with lots of oil even it looks a little dry because more oil will form later when chicken is cooking in coconut milk).
  3. Add in chicken, stir till the meat is lightly brown on the outside. Add remaining coconut milk and cook until the gravy is thick and chicken is cooked thoroughly. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. Add tamarind juice and cook until oil appears. Dish out and serve hot with steamed rice.

Read Full Post »

Oatmeal Raisin & Nut Cookies

Oatmeal Raisin & Nut Cookies

This is one of my family’s favorite and it is much healthier than chocolate chip cookies. The recipe is from the back lid of Quaker oatmeal container. I reduced sugar a bit, and I also added toasted chopped walnuts to give it some crunch.

Read Full Post »

This is Alexander’s favorite pasta dish and also an easy meal to prepare. I used tri-color rotini because the boys like colorful pasta.

Sausage & Mushroom Rotini

Sausage & Mushroom Rotini

Sausage & Mushroom Rotini Recipe (serves 4 people)

Ingredients:
10-15 fresh button/crimini mushrooms– cut into big chunks
1 lb raw sausage (mild or spicy)– break into same size as mushrooms
1 small container Parmesan & Basil pasta sauce
3 cloves garlic– finely chopped
dash of chili flakes– optional
6 oz dry rotini pasta

Methods:

  1. In a big pot with enough boiling water, add in some salt and cook rotini until al dente. Drained.
  2. Saute sausage with olive oil in a deep pan until about cooked. Add in garlic, mushrooms, chili flakes and cook until the aroma comes out. Salt and pepper to taste. Add in drained rotini and pasta sauce. Turn heat to medium low and stir quickly. Dish out and serve immediately.

Note:

  1. Sausage: remove the sausage casing before breaking up the meat, or you can buy sausage in a bulk. Use real sausage and not some processed types that taste like hot links or hot dogs.
  2. Use any kind of pasta sauce to suit your taste ie: alfredo, marinara, tomato basil, pesto etc…

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »