Monday 18 May 2015

Sliced Cheddar Cheese Muffins by Stephanie Ng

Sliced Cheddar Cheese Muffins


Wet ingredients:

1 large egg, room temp
2 cups of Meiji Bulgaria plain yogurt (or any plain yogurt 240ml) taken out of fridge for at least 30min
80 ml canola or corn oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Dry ingredients:
260 grams plain flour
100 grams caster sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
5-6 slices of cheddar cheese(I used Cowhead)


Preheat oven to 190 degrees C. Prepare 12 muffin cups or line your muffin tray with liners. 

In a large bowl whisk all the wet ingredients gently till fully mixed. Place aside. 

In another large bowl, sift the flour then whisk in all the dry ingredients. Tear the cheese pieces into 2-3cm sizes and drop them into the mixture. Gently stir in the cheese pieces such that they are evenly spread throughout the dry mixture. 

Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and using a spatula, gently fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until the dry ingredients are sufficiently moistened. It should take about 15 -20 strokes. Do not over mix the batter as the muffins will become very tough. The batter will be thick and lumpy.

Scoop the batter into muffin cups and top each with 2-3 small pieces of sliced cheese again before u put them into the oven.

Bake for about 15 - 20 min or until u smell the aroma of the baked muffins. Mine was done around 18min. The toothpick test doesn't work as the melted cheese within the batter would be sticky. Cool the muffins for about 10 min before consuming as the cheese would be very hot.

Jamie Oliver's Bloomin' Brilliant Brownies by Stephanie Ng

Jamie Oliver's Bloomin' Brilliant Brownies

Recipe adapted from Jamie Oliver's Bloomin' Brilliant Brownies
Serves 20

250 g unsalted butter
200 g good-quality dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids), broken up
75 g dried sour cherries, optional
50 g chopped roasted nuts, optional
80 g cocoa powder, sifted
65 g plain flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder
360 g caster sugar(I reduced it to 280g)
4 large free-range eggs
zest of 1 orange, optional
250 ml crème fraîche, optional

Preheat your oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Line a 25cm square baking tin with greaseproof paper. In a large bowl over some simmering water, melt the butter and the chocolate and mix until smooth. Add the cherries and nuts, if you're using them, and stir together. 

In a separate bowl, mix together the cocoa powder, flour, baking powder and sugar, then add this to the chocolate, cherry and nut mixture. Stir together well. Beat the eggs and mix in until you have a silky consistency.

Pour your brownie mix into the baking tray, and place in the oven for around 25 minutes based on Jamie's original recipe for a very gooey centre(see next 2 paras on the baking times for different textures). You don't want to overcook them so, unlike cakes, you don't want a skewer to come out all clean. The brownies should be slightly springy on the outside but still gooey in the middle.

If you like it really gooey inside, 25min of baking is enough. A skewer poked into the centre will come out sticky. You may allow it to cool in the tray before carefully lifting the grease proof paper with the slab of brownie out, transferring to a large chopping board and cut into chunky squares.

However, if you prefer it to have a crispier top and just slightly gooey centre, bake it for 25min then remove from the oven. Allow it to cool in the tray for about 15mins then put it into the oven again at 150°C for another 8-10mins. Allow to cool in the tray before carefully lifting the grease proof paper with the slab of brownie out, transferring to a large chopping board and cut into chunky squares.

These make a fantastic dessert served with a dollop of crème fraîche mixed with some orange zest.

Tuesday 10 March 2015

Yong Tau Foo (Hong Kah North Sg50 Masterchef Cooking Competition) by Rontree Chan

Yong Tau Foo (5 different types for 4 servings) 


1 piece Boneless Chicken Thigh ( remove skin and fat) ( C)
200g Minced Pork (D,E,F)
8 pieces Tiger Prawn ( remove shell and devein) (B)
1 pack Unicurd tofu puff (E)
1 pack Unicurd Tau Kwa (F)
1 pack Fish paste (B,C,F)
20 pieces Sweet Thai Basil Leaves ( finely chopped) (C )
1 Egg White ( divide to 3 portions for B, C and F)
100g Soy Bean (A)
100g Ikan Bilis (A)
1 piece Lady's Finger (Blanched and cut to 2cm length) (E)
1 piece Bitter Gourd (D)
3 pieces Shitake Mushroom ( diced) (D,E,F)
5 pieces Water Chestnut (diced) (D,E,F)
some Spring Onion for garnish ( finely chopped)

light soy sauce
Hua Diao Chinese Wine
Sesame Oil
Chicken Powder
Corn Starch
white pepper powder

(A) Yong Tau Foo Soup 
 Lightly fried the ikan bilis, cooled and pound to small pieces put in a filter bag.
Boil 8 bowls of water with soy beans and ikan bilis for 1-2 hrs.
Add some salt and pepper to taste.
The soup will get sweeter After cooking (B),( C) and (F) in it.

(B) Prawn Ball ( place the prawn in cold running water for 1-2 hr)
Minced 1/2 of the prawns finely and dice 1/2 of the remianing prawns.
add 1 TBsp of Fish paste, pinch of salt, sugar and pepper,some egg white
and 1 Tsp of corn flour.
Mix well till gluey. Use palm to scoop paste and throw back to mxing bowl a few
times to increase its springy texture. Use a spoon and shape to ball.
Blanch in soup for around 2-3 mins( depending on its size).
Dish out place in a bowl of warm soup, set aside.

(C) Basil Chicken Ball
Cut chicken thigh to dice size. Repeatedly chop on it to give it a rough minced
texture. ( not too fine like minced chicken meat)
Add Finely chopped basil leaves, 1 tsp salt, 2.5tsp sugar, some egg white, 2 TBsp
fish paste, 1 tsp Hua Diao Wine, 1/2 tsp chicken powder and 1 tsp corn flour
Mix well till gluey. Use palm to scoop paste and throw back to mxing bowl a few
times. Use 2 spoons to shape it to quenelle (dumpling shape).
Blanch in soup for around 5 mins.
Dish out place in a bowl of warm soup, set aside.

(D) Bitter Gourd with Minced Pork 

(E) Tau Pok (Tofu Puff) with Minced Pork 

(F) Tau Kwa with Minced Pork

 Minced Pork Paste
~ 200g minced pork, add in diced mushroom, water chestnut, 2 Tsp sugar,
1 Tsp salt, Hua diao wine, sesame oil, 1/2 tsp chicken powder and corn flour
Mix Well and stir in one circular motion till achieving gluey texture.
~ Split to 3 portions for D, E and F

(D) Cut Bitter Gourd to 5cm length, then cut into 2 or 3 parts of 2.5 cm width.
Use a spoon to scrap the white internal part. Rub with salt and leave for 20 mins.
Wash bitter gourd with water and pat dry with kitchen towel.
Rub a little corn flour on it surface then top with seasoned minced pork.
Dap the both sides of the minced pork( the joining edges between bitter gourd
and minced pork) with a little corn flour.
Sent for deep fry for around 3mins. Dish out set aside.

(E) Cut a hole on the tau pok( Tofu puff) , gently reverse it inside out.
Fill it 3/4 with minced pork paste. Use finger to dig a hole in it then place the
cooked lady's finger vertically on it. Fill with more minced pork.
Try to close up the opening and use 2 palms to shape into ball.
Sent for deep fry for around 5mins. Cut into half to serve.

(F) Add the remaining egg white into minced pork paste and mix well.
Add a little for corn flour if it is too wet. Set aside.
Use 1 piece of Tau kwa. Cut into quarterly to 4 pieces and section cut to 1cm
Thick. Dap dry with kitchen towel and sear it till golden brown with little oil
in a non stick pan. Dish out and cool it. Cut and use a spoon to dig a square hole
on its surface. Top with minced pork paste. Blanch in soup for around 3 mins.
Dish out set aside.

To Serve, put all yong tau foo [B] [C] [D] [E] and [F] in a bowl with spring onion
in it. Pour in hot soup [A] through a strainer and serve immediately.

Friday 27 February 2015

Taiyaki with Azuki Filling by Stevia Chai

Taiyaki with Azuki Filling


1 3/4 c flour
2 tsp baking powder...
1/2 tsp salt
1 T sugar
3 eggs; separated
1 1/2 c milk
90g butter; melted

Sweet adzuki bean paste or desire fillings


Sift flour, baking powder and salt into a mixing bowl and set aside.

In another bowl, mix the egg yolk and melted butter together, then add in the milk.

Add the egg yolk mixture to the flour mixture and stir till not a trace of flour to be seen.

In a clean oil free bowl, whisk the egg whites till frothy and add in the sugar. Whisk till soft peak stage.

Blend the egg white mixture into the whisked egg whites with a hand whisk quite and gently.

Cook mixture in a taiyaki iron by filling the mould with half the batter and place 1 - 2 tsp of adzuki bean paste in the centre and spoon some batter to cover the bean paste. Cook by turning the mould every now and then to evenly brown both sides.

Carp Coconut Nian Gao (椰汁锦鲤年糕) by Vanessa Tay

Carp Coconut Nian Gao (椰汁锦鲤年糕)


glutinous rice flour 200g

wheat starch 30g

rice flour 20g

rock sugar 120g (you may adjust to your preferred sweetness)

salt 1/8 teaspoon

water 225ml (original recipe 200ml)

coconut milk 150g (original recipe 130g. I used Heng Guan packet coconut milk.)

carrot juice 80ml (to use 140g carrot and 80g water. You may use pumpkin to replace carrot) *This amount is enough for 2 nian gaos for me. Hence you might want to half the amount here.


1. Mix rock sugar, salt and water in a pot. Boil till dissolve. Leave aside to cool.

2. Mix together and stir well the glutinous rice flour, wheat starch and rice flour. Slowly add in the cooled sugar water into the flour mixture. Knead into a dough. Cover with cling wrap and best to leave overnight.
*I could not get the flour to stick together and it was still very crumbly, hence I increased the amount of water to 225ml in my second attempt. For the first attempt, I just simply added another 25ml of water when I was trying to knead the dough.
*I later read under the comments in the original post that you could just leave the covered dough in room temperature. I missed out the part and left the dough in the fridge. However I let it thawed before proceeding the next step. The dough became very hard when removed from the fridge.

3. Steam the carrots till cooked and soft. Add in the water and blend together with the carrots to make into puree. Strain the pureed carrot to obtain the juice.

4. Add in coconut milk to “break open” the dough and loosen it to liquid form. Strain the liquid 2 to 3 times to ensure no flour lumps.
*I skipped the straining part and I used my mixer to help with the mixing. The mixture was smooth and no visible lumps. I increased the coconut milk from 130g to 150g.

5. Grease the mould with cooking oil. You may want to grease with more oil so that it will be easier to unmould the nian gao. Scoop some of the carrot juice and pour over the gales and the fins parts of the koi mould. Steam for 2-3 minutes. Pour in the remaining. Steam under high heat for 20 minutes.

6. Cool completely the cooked nian gao. You may want to chill the nian gao in the fridge to set it further before unmoulding as the nian gao is very soft when just steamed.