Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Cheeseboard Bakery is a very famous bakery in Berkeley, California. Their breads are amazing and there’s always a line for their freshly baked breads. Cheeseboard also makes pizzas, and there’s a line too. They only sell vegetarian pizzas, and the menu changes weekly. What’s interesting is that they always give you extra slices of pizzas to “compensate” you waiting patiently in the line (the line sometimes gets long, but it keeps moving). They also give you some spicy green pepper sauce for your pizza… boy, it’s THIS sauce that got me hooked when I had it at the first bite. I bought a container of the sauce, and the family finished it fast! Luckily, I read the ingredient list on the container before throwing it away. Guessing the amount for each ingredients wasn’t that hard with this sauce, and I think I got it pretty close to Cheeseboard’s.

Cilantro Pepper Sauce

Cilantro Pepper Sauce

 

Cilantro Pepper Sauce

Ingredients:

1/2 bunch of fresh cilantro
3 Serrano peppers
2 cloves garlic
1/2 small onion
1 tsp spicy mastard
4-5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt to taste

Method:

Coarsely chop cilantro, peppers, garlic and onion then put all ingredients in a food processor to blend well. Served with warm flat breads, baguette or even pizzas.

Read Full Post »

IMG_3713

Tiramisu Cake Roll 提拉米蘇蛋糕卷

Tiramisu Cake Roll 提拉米蘇蛋糕卷

Ingredients:

Four mixture:
6 tbsp cake flour
1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tbsp instant espresso coffee powder

Egg yolk mixture:
6 egg yolks
3 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp milk
2 tbsp oil
1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp golden rum

Egg white mixture:
6 egg whites
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1/3 cup sugar

Filling:
3/4 cup tiramisu cream– see note below

for brushing (mix well, optional):
1 tbsp strong coffee
1 tbsp golden rum

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F, place a oven rack in the middle of the oven. Line the bottom and 4 sides of a 15 x 10 x 1 inch jelly roll pan. Combine cake flour mixture.
  2. In a big bowl, whisk egg yolks and sugar with a balloon whisk until it is pale yellow and fluffy, scrape the bowl several times. Add in milk, oil and salt. Mix well.
  3. Sift in cake flour in 3 batches, mix well until the batter is smooth after each addition. Add in rum, mix well again.
  4. Whip egg whites in a dry clean mixing bowl (I use KitchenAid stand mixer) on high speed (KA speed 8) until bubbles are small and no visible clear egg whites. Add in cream of tartar and continue whipping on high speed (speed 8). Scrape down the bowl if necessary.
  5. When egg whites turns white and the bubbles becomes very tiny, slowly pour in sugar. Continue whipping on high speed (speed 8), scraping down the bowl once, until it has a sheen appearance like a pearl. When you lift the whisk upside down, the egg whites will form a soft curl at the end of the tip (this is called soft peak. If the curl is too much then it’s not ready yet– continue whipping). Turn to low speed (speed 4) and whip for another 1-2 minutes. This is to remove any big bubbles in the egg whites so the cake will have a more delicate, fine texture.
  6. Gently fold in whipped egg whites into yolk mixture in 3 batches. Slowly pour batter onto the prepared jelly roll pan. Spread and smooth the top. Tap the pan a couple of times and bake at the middle rack of the oven for 15-18 minutes. Lightly press the top of the cake, if it springs back then the cake is done. Remove from the oven.
  7. Transfer the cake (with parchment) onto a cooling rack. Flatten out parchment paper on 4 sides of the cake.
  8. When the cake is cooled, place another piece of parchment paper (larger than cake) on top of the cake. Carefully and quickly flip cake and 2 sheets of parchment papers over (so the cake crust will face out when rolled up). Now the cake bottom is facing up. Remove parchment paper liner. Brush coffee+rum mixture on the surface if desired.
  9. Spread tiramisu cream evenly on the cake. With the short side facing you, roll up the cake like a jelly roll. Wrap the cake roll in the parchment paper and chill in the fridge before serving.  Before slicing each piece, run knife in hot water and wipe dry with a paper towel to ensure a nice clean cut.

Regina’s Note:

  • Tiramisu cream— since cake roll only requires 3/4 cup of tiramisu cream, I don’t border making it purposely. I just save some cream when I make tiramisu for the cake roll.

Read Full Post »

When I shop at local farmer’s markets, I always temp to buy all kinds of delicious summer fruits, and the result is buying too much– in this case it was 1/2 flat of fresh strawberries (after I already bought 3-4 pounds of stone fruits)! So, adding the last 2 over ripe banana on the kitchen counter, here comes the strawberry banana cake. It’s actually a fluffy banana cake, but with strawberries on the top. It is pretty much a flat chiffon cake with all that fluffy and light texture. Oh, and the strawberries taste so delicious too!

Strawberry Banana Chiffon Cake

Strawberry Banana Chiffon Cake

Strawberry Banana Chiffon Cake Recipe (makes one 9 x 13 inch pan)

Ingredients:

for yolk mixture:
4 egg yolks
4 tbsp sugar
2 ripe bananas– mashed
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
5 tbsp unsalted butter– melted
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup cake flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

for egg white mixture:
4 egg whites
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
3 tbsp sugar

for sprinkles:
1 cup chopped fresh strawberries
finely shredded sweetened coconut
chopped walnuts

Method:

  1. Line a 9 x 13 x 2 baking pan with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Prepare yolk mixture: In a large mixing bowl whisk yolks and sugar with a balloon whisk, until it is pale yellow and fluffy. Mix in mashed bananas, vanilla extract, butter and salt to combine. Sift in cake flour, baking powder and ground cinnamon combined, in 2 batches. Mix until no dry ingredients appear.
  3. Prepare egg white mixture: In a separate bowl, whip egg white and cream of tartar until frothy. Gradually add in sugar, one tbsp at a time, and whip on high speed until soft peak (whipped egg white should have a little curl at the end tip when lifted up).
  4. Gently FOLD IN whipped egg whites to yolk mixture, in 3 batches. Pour cake batter into cake pan. Sprinkle strawberries, grated coconut and walnuts on the top. Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the cake is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove the cake with parchment paper lining to a rack to cool.

Read Full Post »

I saw this recipe inside the box of Challenge Butter, and decided to give it a try. The recipe yields a large loaf, but I use a 9 inch square glass pan because I was worry the batter will overfill my loaf pan. The verdict: the orange and mango flavor is very light. I used brown sugar instead of granulated sugar stated in the recipe, and the bread came out not too sweet.

Orange Mango Nut Bread

Orange Mango Nut Bread

 

Orange Mango Nut Bread (original recipe from Challenge Butter, makes 1 large loaf or one 9x9x2 inch square pan)

Ingredients:
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cups sugar– I used light brown sugar
2 tsp fresh orange zest– I used lemon zest from 2 lemons
2 eggs
2 cups flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 salt
1 container (6 oz) plain yogurt
1/3 cup orange juice
1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans– I used toasted walnuts
1/2 cup chopped dried mangoes

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease baking pan with cooking spray. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl.
  2. Cream butter, sugar and zest until fluffy. Beat in eggs.
  3. Add in flour mixture, alternating with yogurt and orange juice. Mix with a rubber spatula until all combined. Stir in nuts and mangoes.
  4. Pour batter into baking pan, smooth the top, Sprinkle chopped walnuts on the top (extra– optional). Bake 45-50 minutes, until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  5. Let stand in the baking pan for 10 minutes. Remove and cool on rack.
Orange Mango Nut Bread

Orange Mango Nut Bread

 

Read Full Post »

I’ve been posting a lot of entries about foods recently. It’s time to do some updates on the kids:

Alexander: Alexander is now in kindergarten. He loves school. He loves books as always ever since he was little. This boy loves math too. Lots of time I found him wrote himself math problems on piece of paper and solved the problems too. Recently he’s into multiplication… hard to believe that next week he’s turning 6. Alexander never quite like veggie except for a few, but he is expanding his veggie varieties. He now takes kabocha squash, carrots, some leafy veggies like snow pea leaves, yu choy sum… Thanks for trying little boy. One thing very sweet of him is that he usually shares especially his candies…Despite his misbehavior sometimes, he’s a very sweet, loving and caring child. I know he will protect and look after his little brother and sister.

Ethan: Ethan now is 3 1/2 years old and so terrible three that’s him. He is now in preschool 3 times a week– getting more opened up at school which is good. This boy is more active than his big brother Alexander ever since little… always more into play than into books. However he shows interest in books recently and flipping books by himself. This boy has a chocolate tooth– chocolate is his first choice for candies. I remember one time when Alexander was eating M&M’s, and Ethan said “Ger-Ger (big brother in Chinese), don’t eat chocolate… it’s junky food!”( yeah… you can tell how bossy he is). Minutes later, he said to Alexander, “Ger-Ger, can I have some M&M’s ?”… lol. Unlike his brother, Ethan takes a lot more different vegetables (especially leafy ones). His favorites are kabocha squash, snow pea leaves, yam leaves– he wants big bites. While Alexander lacks of creativity, Ethan is just the opposite. He has more imagination and pretend play a lot of time. One time we heard him was screaming, and it turned out that he was screaming at himself (with a mean look, while looking at his reflection on the baby book mirror), “Hey, don’t copy me okay?”… it was funny! Ethan’s Chinese is not as good as Alexander, lots of mix use of Chinese and English in his sentences, so funny and cute…

Audrey: Audrey Bell just turned 6 months last week. Growing up surrounded by people, she is not happy when no one in sight. I think she remember previous doctor’s visits because she started crying when I laid her down in the exam room. Starting last week we have been feeding her some rice cereal along with little water in bottle. She takes cereal okay but doesn’t quite like bottle other than biting on the nipple (with no teeth of course). But I believe all babies are  trainable so I’m gonna try giving her bottle everyday… wish me luck. Also, whenever Audrey sees me she gets VERY anxious/excited. I guess I am a milk production machine to her 🙂 At this point she still wakes up once in the middle of the night for feeding. Very rare occasion that she would sleep throughout the night… we can’t wait till the time when she sleeps all the way till next morning… yeah, that will be very nice!

To Alexander, Ethan and Audrey:
Each one of you is unique and holds a special place deep in my heart. I love you all and want you growing to be a happy, kind and good person. A mother’s love is unconditional and you’ll understand when you become a parent. For now, sweet dreams and good night…. zzzzz…..

Read Full Post »

Summer 2007 Recap

I know, I know… it’s now 2008 and I just started writing our summer time 2007 but hey, at least I wrote it rather than letting it fade away in my memory.

Let’s see, we had a busy and exciting summer… did lots of fun stuff. In July we went to Discovery Kingdom. It was mostly for the boys– Richard and I are not big fan of roller coasters (in fact I stay away from it!) but the weather was nice and the place was not crowded during week days. We just enjoyed the day nice and slow. August was a busy month. My parents arrived on August 1st and stayed with us for 2 1/2 months. It is always nice to see them and have them with us! Richard’s mom came about a week later. They are all coming for Ethan’s 2-year-old birthday celebration on August 11th. Ethan is a big fan of ducks so I made him a duck birthday cake (I still need to post an cake blog about it). We invited some good friends and their families and a good time was had by all. Also, when Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus were playing Belloration in the Bay Area, one of the grandma I met at the park happened to have free tickets and passed to me. So we all got to watch the show at Oakland Coliseum for free. I had never seen a circus show before and it’s quite fun and exciting. Of course the boys loved it too. Alexander still remembers the show each time he sees the Coliseum building from the BART train. In the first week of September we all flew to Cancun, Mexico for a 3-day-2 night vacation. Originally we wanted to visit San Diego but it was too expensive. We are glad we went to Cancun instead!

*** April 08 update: This draft above has been sitting in the queue way too long and it’s already spring here!… will try to write as detailed as possible as I try to remember what else we did last summer.***

It was our first time to Cancun and turned to be a great choice. We booked the vacation package through Expedia for 3 days/2 nights. To make use of most of our vacation time in Cancun, we took a late night (around 11:30pm)flight from Oakland Airport, stopped over at Mexico City around 5:30am, then finally arrived at Cancun around 9am. There are lots of hotels (including all-inclusive ones) along the coast and the resort we were staying is called  Dreams Resorts & Spa. There are 3-4 restaurants and bars on the property, and since it’s an all-inclusive resort we didn’t have to pay for the food and beverages (alcohol and no-alcohol, including in-room beverages). We paid the tips though… This all-inclusive feature worked out quite nice especially when traveling with young children. It just made vacation time less stressful. Every evening the hotel will provide activity schedule for the next day (most activities are free to the guest too) and the same for children– they have a children activity center where they have activities for kids at different age, even including free day care until dinner hour if parents need some quiet dinner time. Too bad Alexander didn’t take advantage of the children center and Ethan is too young to be admitted (although he wanted to go inside the children section!).

The vacation is relaxing. In the morning before the boys woke up, I had some swimming time to myself and cleared my mind. Then we all headed for breakfast. After that we spent the rest of the morning and early afternoon on the beach. The water was very calm and shallow. I spent most of the time in the water swimming or relaxing on a floating mat. Richard did some reading and join me in the water every now and then. My dad’s arm had a wound and he avoided going into the water and thus napping pretty much most of the time on the beach. Mom decided to have some water fun as she tried to go kayaking and some swimming. Alexander and Ethan loved to play with the sand and later on enjoying some "swimming" fun as Richard and I brought them into the water. After we washed up then we went for lunch the boys took a nap until dinner time. Since the food was included the package we tended to eat more, so after dinner walk was very nice especially with the sea breeze blowing on your face. The drinks was included too so we tried all kinds of cocktail too.

The third and last day morning I went to the beach first to check if the water was nice like the day before but found out that a hurricane is on its way and throughout the night there had been some strong current along the coast and washed away lots of sand, revealing rocks underneath– totally no good to even get into the water. So I headed to the resort swimming instead. After breakfast we then get ready to check out. It was cloudy in Cancun that day and rained when we arrived at Mexico City airport. We were so lucky we caught the nice weather between 2 storms.

About 2 weeks after we came back from Cancun we went to Las Vegas for several days. Richard had a conference at Ceasar’s Palace so we decided to go along– no one can resist the temptation of Las Vegas! Few years back Richard had a conference at Ceasar’s Palace and we stayed at Flamingo at that time, so we decided that we would do the same too this time around– turned out to be big disappointment. We booked a deluxe suite, well the room is much bigger and more space for the boys, but furnishing is bad– table drawer was falling apart, lamp broken etc… and they took out the kid splashing pool that was there last visit… bummer! The boys were kind of disappointed that they didn’t have any splashing fun. Luckily they got to see the musical fountain one evening after having dinner at Bellagio. The performance was amazing and we all had a wonderful time watching it. I was having a cold and just started recovering on the way back. Overall the trip wasn’t bad– We had lots of good seafood buffets and I had some time playing slot machines while either my parents or Richard watch the boys.

So you can see we really had a wonderful summer 2007. Sorry it took me so long to write it and for you to read it 🙂 This coming summer will be different for us but just as exciting (and probably chaotic too!) as we’ll be welcoming our baby girl to family. Looking forwards to meeting little Audrey!

Read Full Post »

It’s a GIRL!!!

We were told from the 1st ultrasound that it is a girl. Then during the more detailed 2nd ultrasound the technician said the baby is a girl. Right after that  Dr. Edwards (the doctor who performed amniocentesis) confirmed the sex from the ultrasound. Of course the amniocentesis result yesterday told us it’s definitely going to be a GIRL!!! And her name will be Audrey Isabella Chennault.

Oh, we are happy to tell everyone that the amniocentesis result showed baby Audrey is just fine, which is a big relief for Richard and I. Thank you all (especially my family) for your prayers, support and help during the stressful time.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »