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Archive for January, 2012

Ham and Cheese Rolls

Ham and Cheese Rolls

Ham and Cheese Rolls Recipe (makes 18 rolls, 9x13x2 glass pan)

Ingredients:

for Dough:
2 1/4 cup bread flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tbsp dry milk powder
4 tbsp sugar
2 tsp dry yeast
1 egg
125- 150 ml warm water
2 1/2 tbsp butter

for Filling:
3-4 pieces of sandwich ham– cut into thin strips
5 tbsp shredded Parmesan cheese

1 egg– beaten, for glaze

Method:

  1. In the mixing bowl mix well the first 5 ingredients then add in egg. With dough hook attached and starts kneading, slowing add water to form a dough. Add a little more water if necessary. Drop in butter and continue to knead the dough until it doesn’t stick to the bowl and pass the “membrane” test. (pull a small piece of the dough, use two hand to stretch the dough to a very thin layer– if the layer doesn’t tear then the dough is ready to proof. Otherwise, continue kneading until it passes the test).
  2. Transfer the dough to a big bowl. Wrap the bowl and leave it on a warm spot to rest/proof until double in size.  (To speed up the resting time a little you can sit the bowl on a moist hot towel, or sit the bowl on top of a pot of hot water).
  3. Lightly knead the dough on a board a few times to punch out big air pockets trapped inside. Roll out to a 9×13 inch rectangle of 1/2 inch thickness. Spread shredded cheese evenly (be sure to cover the edges too), followed ham strips. Roll the dough up like a jelly roll/Swiss roll. Pinch to seal the edge. Cut rolls into 18 even pieces. Place each piece (cut side up) on greased glass pan, leaving a little space between each. Cover with plastic wrap and let it rest in the fridge overnight (see note below).
  4. Let the chilled dough sit in room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour before baking. Preheat oven to 375°F. Apply egg wash on the top of the rolls and bake in preheated 375°f oven for 15-18 minutes until golden brown. Remove from pan and cool on a rack.

Regina’s Note:

  • Dough resting time: for 2nd resting time, 45 minutes to 1 hour is adequate. But I found resting the dough in the fridge overnight yields a much fluffier texture to the buns.
Ham and Cheese Rolls-- ready to roll up.

Ham and Cheese Rolls-- ready to roll up.

Ham and Cheese Rolls-- ready for second dough resting.

Ham and Cheese Rolls-- ready for second dough resting.

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I hate clam chowder that has more of anything else but clam meat but unfortunately this is the way with most restaurants. This is my version of clam chowder– LOTS of clam meat, some potatoes and some onion. NOTHING else– no carrots, celery, bell peppers, and who knows what’s that big chunk of gooey thing.

Oh, a word about the photo below– I am not quite happy how it came out but it is the best one I have. I guess I’ll have to make some more clam chowder again in order to take some better pictures. 🙂

Clam Chowder

Clam Chowder

Clam Chowder Recipe (serves 6-8 people)

Ingredients:
1 gigantic can (51oz) chopped sea clam from Costco
2 bottles (8 oz each) of clam juice
3 cups water
2 lbs Yukon Gold potatoes
1 medium onion– diced
4 tbsp unsalted butter
6 tbsp flour
5 tbsp whipping cream
salt and pepper to taste

thickening agent (mix together):
4-6 tbsp cream of wheat
4-6 tbsp water (same amount as cream of wheat)

Method:

  1. Boil potatoes until just soft. Drain. Cool slightly and cut into strips.
  2. In a deep pot, add a little oil and saute onion until tender. Add in clam meat, clam juice and water. Cover and bring to a boil on high heat. turn down the heat to medium and let it simmer.
  3. Prepare roux: In a small sauce pan add butter and flour over medium low heat. Whisk constantly with a balloon whisk, until the roux is pale brown and fragrant. Take care not to burn the roux.
  4. Scoop out some liquid from the deep pot to the roux, use the whisk to mix well. The roux mixture will be thicken at first. Keep whisking in soup liquid to the roux mixture, until the roux mixture is thinner. Pour roux mixture back to the deep pot, whisk to combine.
  5. Add cooked potatoes, ground black pepper, and thickening agent. Stir over medium heat until it starts to bubble and thicken. Stir in whipping cream. Enjoy!

Regina’s Note:

  • Since there’s enough salt in the canned chopped clam meat and clam juice, I omit salt in the cooking.
  • Cream of Wheat: Instead of using more butter and flour to make the roux to thicken up the soup, I use cream of wheat as it is much healthier and does a very good job thickening the soup.

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What to do with overripe bananas, besides banana bread, banana muffins and banana waffles? Richard suggested banana nut pancakes, and here they are! This was my first time making banana nut pancakes. Since I didn’t have time searching for the “perfect” banana nut pancake recipe, I use my fresh corn pancake recipe as a reference. And, I’m happy the pancakes turn out well– fluffy and happy 🙂 I froze some extras, and they taste pretty good too after warming up in microwave.

Banana Nut Pancakes

Banana Nut Pancakes

Banana Nut Pancake Recipe (makes 15 pancakes)

Ingredients:
1 3/4 cup flour
3 tbsp sugar
5 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 large ripe bananas
1 1/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 tbsp butter– melted and cooled
2 eggs
handful of chopped toasted walnuts

Method:

  1. Sift flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a big bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl, mash bananas with a fork. Add in milk, vanilla extract, melted butter and eggs. Hand whisk to combine.
  3. Pour the wet mixture into the flour mixture all at once. Stir until the batter just combined. The batter will look lumpy– DO NOT overstir. Add in chopped walnuts and stir once to incorporate walnuts into batter.
  4. Cook as you will with regular pancakes. Serve hot with butter, maple syrup and whipped cream.

Regina’s Note:

  • Cooked pancakes may be frozen for quick breakfast, just heat up in the microwave.

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I made steamed “kueh”, or dumpling, a long while back using glutinous rice flour but the skin of the kueh turn out too soft. This time around, I got this recipe from my friend and neighbor Angela, as she gave me some steamed kueh and I found her kueh has a slightly chewy skin that I prefer. Needless to say, I quickly asked her for the skin dough recipe.

Things I do differently this time: I placed the kueh on cut-out parchemnt paper, instead of greased cut-out banana leaves– and the kueh don’t stick to the bottom paper at all. Also, I don’t brush kueh skin with oil after steaming. For the filling, you can make anything you want, as long as it is cooked.  I have tried on shredded daikon and jicama, and both times turn out pretty good.

Steamed "Kueh" Dumplings with Shredded Daikon filling

Steamed “Kueh” Dumplings with Shredded Daikon filling

Steamed "Kueh" Dumplings with Shredded Daikon filling. I used banana leave as liners for this batch.

Steamed “Kueh” Dumplings with Shredded Daikon filling. I used banana leave as liners for this batch.

Steamed “Kueh” Dumplings with Shredded Daikon filling (makes about 30 pieces)

Ingredients:

For the skin:
4 cup glutinous rice flour
3/4 cup wheat starch 澄面粉– see picture below
1 1/2 — 2 cup hot water
6 tbsp oil

shredded daikon filling or jicama filling– recipes follow
30 pieces parchment paper (4″ x 4″) or blanched banana leaves

Method:

  1. Mix flour and wheat starch together in a big bowl. Add in hot water and oil to form a dough. Knead the dough until it is smooth. Add more hot water, little at a time, if the dough is too dry. Divide into 20 pieces. Divide filling into 20 portions as well.
  2. Roll out each piece of dough to about 4-inch circle. Spoon in one portion of shredded daikon filling, fold up dough skin and pinch to seal the edge. Place the kueh/dumpling on a piece of parchment paper (sealed side facing up), or lightly greased banana leaves. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling.
  3. Place several kueh/dumplings inside a steamer, and steam on high heat for 8-10 minutes. Be sure not to put too many dumplings in one batch, so there is room for the steam to come up from the water boiling at the bottom.

For shredded daikon filling:

Ingredients:
1.5 lb daikon– peel and shred
4 tbsp dried shrimps– finely chopped
3 cloves garlic– chopped
3 dried mushroom– soak to soften, slice thin
2 stalk green onion– chopped
1 cup hot water

Seasoning:
2 tsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp chicken bouillon powder
1/4 tsp ground white pepper
1/4 tsp sesame oil

Method:

  1. Put shredded daikon in a bowl and pour in generous amount of salt. Toss and squeeze daikon. Set aside for 15-20 minutes so daikon softened and liquid draws out. Rinse daikon a couple times. Squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
  2. Put 3 tbsp of oil into a wok over high heat. When the wok is ready, saute garlic and dried shrimps until aromatic.
  3. Add in mushrooms, saute for a couple of minutes before adding in daikon. Keep stirring until it is aromatic. Add seasoning, adjust to taste.
  4. Stir and cook until daikon softens, adding some hot water, little by little, if necessary to cook daikon further to soften. Put in chopped green onion. Stir a few more times then dish out and cool.

For Jicama Filling:
1.5 lb jicama– peel and cut into thin strips– see note below
2 inch carrot– cut into thin strips
5 dried mushroom– soak to soften, slice thin
3 tbsp dried shrimps– finely chopped
2 cloves garlic– finely chopped
2 stalk green onion– chopped
1 cup hot water

seasoning:
2 tsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp chicken bouillon powder
dashes ground white pepper
1/4 tsp sesame oil

Method:

  1. Put 3 tbsp of oil into a wok over high heat. When the wok is ready, saute garlic and dried shrimps until aromatic.
  2. Add in mushrooms and carrots, saute for a couple of minutes before adding in jicama. Keep stirring until it is aromatic. Add seasoning, adjust to taste.
  3. Stir and cook until jicama turns soft but still taste slightly crunchy, adding some hot water, little by little, if necessary to cook jicama further to soften. Put in chopped green onion, stir a few more times then dish out and cool.

Regina’s Note:

  • Jicama strips: Unlike dough made from flour, glutinous dough is not very elastic– it crumbs and break apart easily. So it’s better to cut jicama to very thin and shorter strips, so the filling won’t poke through the dough.
Wheat Starch

Wheat Starch

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