Sunday, 26 February 2012

Steamed Sweet Buns

My semi-craving for apam started when I saw a photo taken by a dear friend in Zurich of her food spread for the occasion of his little boy's second birthday...
Her's looked really scrumptious with fresh coconut grating and all.
Well, I do love my apam (or apom, as it was known to me waaay back) but, I'm not willing to spend too much time on them.
Scouring the net,  I found this really simple recipe; more importantly it's made without using any chemical additive that I'm not so fond of.
These little almost perfect orb-ette got the family approval...

Steamed Sweet Buns

1 egg
40g sugar
60ml skimmed milk
100g flour
1 tbsp green tea powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp oil

Sift all the dry ingredients into a bowl.
In another bowl, lightly whisk eggs and sugar.
Add in milk, oil and the dry ingredients and mix until combined.
Fill the mixture into  6 silicone cups.
Place the cups in the steamer and cover.
Steam over high heat for 20 minutes. 

Saturday, 25 February 2012

Roasted Duck in pancake

Our dinner for this evening...

A simplified version of the more famous Peking Duck.

Using boneless duck breast, marinade the meat with some five-spice powder, salt, grated fresh ginger and a little black pepper. Leave to marinade, preferably overnight, or longer.
Bake the duck in a 140C oven for about 60 minutes. Separate the meat from the skin and shred the meat using 2 forks.
Remove excess fat from the skin and return the skin for a futher 20 minutes in a 170C oven or until  the skin is nice and crispy. Chop the skin and mix with the rest of the shredded meat.


To make life easy, buy some pre-made pancake and steam them (Note: it's not necessary to use bamboo steamer , any steamer will do the job nicely)

Take a piece of the pancake, place the shredded meat and some finely sliced cucumber and spring onions, a good spoonful of plum sauce and roll it up!

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Chilli with Cornbread

Oh, shazbot! 
Just when I thought 'tis nice to do a bit of gardening, it started to rain....
What am I to do now? Update my blog?!...

Anyways, this is what we had for dinner last night - my very own chilli recipe that won second placing in the chilli competition recently. 


Muna's Eastern Spice Chilli

1 tbsp vegetable oil, to fry
500g mince beef
3 banana shallots, thinly sliced
1 large sweet onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely minced

2 dried chipotle chillies
1 dried ancho chillies
2 small dried cayenne peppers

1 tsp smoked sweet paprika powder
1 tsp ground cumin seeds, toasted
1 tsp ground coriander, toasted
1 tsp dried marjoram
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp ground white pepper

400g chopped stewed tomatoes
250ml cold-pressed unsweetened apple juice
250ml unsalted vegetable stock
10g unsweetened dark chocolate (76% cocoa content)
250g cooked kidney beans
1 tbsp dark brown muscovado sugar
salt, to taste


Cut the stalks off the dried chillies and take out the seeds and steep them in 100ml of boiling water.  When softened, blend them to a fine paste in a food processor. Stir in the rest of the spices.

 Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pan on a high heat, then brown the mince in batches, stirring regularly: don't crowd the pan, or it will steam rather than brown. Set aside.

Using the same pan, add in sliced shallots and saute over medium heat until lightly brown. Add the onions and stir-fry briefly, until slightly translucent.

Turn the heat down and add the garlic. Stir and cook until the onion has completely softened, then add the mince, dried chilli paste and spices, chopped tomatoes, apple juice, vegetable stock and a generous pinch of salt and simmer, covered, for 2 hours.

Add the chocolate to the pan along with the sugar and simmer, partially covered, for another half hour, adding a little water if it seems dry, or you prefer a saucier chilli.

Add the beans 10 minutes before the end of cooking, taste, and adjust the seasoning and spicing if necessary.

If possible, leave overnight and reheat to serve.

 75g butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 medium eggs
3/4 cup milk
1 cup flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
2 tsp baking powder

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. 
Combine the eggs and milk. Combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with egg mixture.  
Pour into a greased baking pan. 
Bake at 180C for 20 minutes.  
Cut into squares; serve warm. 

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Beef Balti

Beef Balti

500 g beef, sliced
1 red pepper,  sliced
fresh coriander leaves
fried shallots

1 tbsp vegetable oil or ghee
1 large onion, chopped
1 tbsp garlic and  ginger puree
1 canned chopped tomatoes
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp chilli powder
4 green cardamom
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper

Melt ghee in a large frying pan.
Add the onions and garlic and ginger puree and stir-fry for about 5 minutes.
Stir in tomatoes, paprika, turmeric, cumin, coriander, chilli powder, cardamom, bay leaf and salt and pepper to taste.
Bring to the boil, stirring, then reduce the heat and add the meat.
Add water, if needed, and simmer gently for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the red peppers and continue to simmer for 10 minutes. Adjust the seasoning if neccessary.
Garnish with fried shallots and fresh coriander and serve with Indian bread.

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Tangerine Cake

Tangerine Cake

8 oz butter
8 oz sugar
4 eggs
8 oz flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
zest from 1 tangerine
zest and juice from 1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 160C (fan oven).

Cream butter and sugar.
Beat in the eggs gradually. Add in the lemon and tangerine zest.
Fold in the dry ingredients alternately with the buttermilk and lemon juice.
Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and level the surface.

To make the topping, combine some sugar with some tangerine and lemon juice in a small pan.
Add the tangerine slices and slivers of tangerine peel.
Bring to the boil.
Take the pan off the heat and leave to cool for 5 minutes.