Monday, April 28, 2008

Easy Peach Cheesecake

27 April 2008

Have been looking for an easy cheesecake recipe recently. Something that is simple to make and using ingredients that I have on hand and also do not need to add gelatine. I was searching using google and found this website that has a collection of cheesecake recipes. At first, I was skeptical about using recipes from website like this, which do not have personal reviews about the taste. But I'm glad that I have tried!

I chose the Mango Cheesecake, replacing mango with canned peach slices and peach flavoured yogurt. This recipe is extremely easy to make. It took like only about 1.5 hours to finish everything. I didn't even use an electric mixer, just mix everything by hand only.

However, it was kind of disastrous when I tried to take the cake out of the tin after chilling in the refrigerator. As I did not have any springform cake tin, I just used an ordinary cake tin. Worst of all, I did not use any aluminium foil to line the tin. As a result, I ruined the whole cake when trying to remove it from the cake tin. I just managed to salvage this one and only piece that look okay for me to take photographs. The rest I can only described as 惨不忍睹. The whole cake has been broken into several pieces. :(

Supposed to fold half of the peaches into the cream cheese mixture and leave the remaining for topping. I accidentally added everything into the cream cheese and resulted in lots of peaches in the cream cheese layer. Looks good yah... ;) It is very very delicious with the extra peaches. Yummy! :)

Easy Peach Cheesecake (I halved the recipe for 6 inch round tin)
(Recipe from My Cheesecake Recipes, slightly modified)

60g digestive biscuits
30g butter, melted

125g cream cheese, softened
30g caster sugar
1 egg
200g canned peach slices (leave some for topping, but I accidentally added all into cream cheese!)
100g peach yogurt

1. Crush biscuits in a food processor or with the end of a rolling pin.
2. Add melted butter and stir well to combine.
3. Press into the base of a 6 inch springform cake tin. Refrigerate until set (I chill for 30 minutes).

1. Beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth.
2. Add egg and mix well.
3. Chop half of the peaches into small pieces and fold into cream cheese mixture together with the yogurt.
4. Pour into chilled base and bake at 180C for 25-30 minutes or until firm. Allow to cool in oven with door slightly ajar. Refrigerate when completely cool.
5. Top with peach slices and serve.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Yogurt Bread

25 April 2008

Notice a little change in my photo? I use both the flickr editing tool and this website that Happy Homebaker has shared in her blog. It can make very ordinary photos like mine to look better.

I tried this Yogurt Bread from Pure Enjoyment using the bread machine. This bread taste a little different from other sweet breads. I can taste the yogurt on the first bite, a bit sourish and not quite used to it. But after several bites, I start to like it. It's quite soft and fluffy in the centre.

One thing about baking breads in a bread machine is that the crust is really thick and hard. So if you are not lazy like me, better take it out and shape and bake in another tin, I suppose the result will be better and softer.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Vegetarian Curry Rice

22 April 2008

Both my parents are vegetarians, or to be more specific, lacto-ovo vegetarians, who can eat eggs and dairy products. As they are buddhists, they are not allowed to take 五荤 (Five Acrid And Strong Smelling Vegetables) or 五辛 (Five Spices), which generally refers to onion, garlic, chives, shallot and leek.

In order to make their meals more interesting and appetising, I will occasionally look for recipes from the internet. I recently found a very good vegetarian recipe blog from Singapore, The Modern VEGETARIAN Recipes. It has many vegetarian recipes very suitable local Singaporeans. The blog is also constantly updating, you can always expect new recipes coming up. It's worth a visit for simple home-cooked meals even if you are not a vegetarian.

Some recipes are very simple to cook like this one that we have tried, the One-Pot Curry Rice. Like what the author says "not much work is required and can be ready in just a moment." You simply put all the ingredients into the rice cooker, turn it on, and it will be ready in just a moment.

Maybe I should try and whip up a meal for them in the future. Paiseh (*embarrassed*), so old already, still not able to cook a proper meal for them. Haha... SSB must learn how to cook! :)

Monday, April 21, 2008

Happy Birthday, Small Small Baker!

21 April 2008

It's my BIRTHDAY today!!!

Thanks to sis who has bought this Fruit Gateau cake from Bengawan Solo for me.

I wish for...
good health...
more happiness...
more friends...
more money...
more good food to eat...
more baking...
more blogging...
more readers for my blog...

Greedy huh... :))

Whose little finger is that? (Top right hand corner)

Sorry for the lack of updates. Haven't been baking much recently. :(

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Mexican Coffee Buns

6 April 2008

It's breadmaking again! I made the Mexican Coffee Buns (Rotiboy), which is one of my favourite breads (even though the rotiboy craze has seemed to be over).

Got both the Mexican coffee buns and Sweet dough recipes from the same book called 我会烘焙 (I can bake) by Agnes Chang. I have halved the recipe and used the "DOUGH" function of my bread machine to knead the bread instead of making by hand. The dough is extremely difficult to work with. After kneading by the machine for 30 minutes, when I take it out to shape, the dough is still very very sticky. I keep adding more flour to prevent it from sticking to my hands and hope it will not change the texture of the bread.

After the first rising, when I have to shape them into small portions, they stick to my hands again everytime I divide the dough. It really slows things down. Finally, this is how they look just before sending into the oven. This is my first time trying to pipe the topping. Haha! Quite fun actually. And I do a last minute sprinkle on the cream topping with more chocolate rice (not shown in picture).

Here's the nice-smelling coffee buns. It doesn't have much coffee taste. Probably because I added too little coffee powder and omitted the coffee paste. The topping is not sweet as I have reduced the amount of sugar. The bread is really soft. I forget to mention that I have added some bread improver to this recipe. I have returned the bread machine to my mother's friend. She borrowed us the bread improver too and I thought might as well tried it once before returning so that I can see if the bread improver really make a difference. I think it does!

I must say that I still need more practices, especially in shaping the buns. They all have different shapes and sizes. The taste can also be improved further. They are far from the rotiboy sold outside. I have found several other Rotiboy recipes, with fillings. Share the links here with u and I might try them in the future.

Mexican Coffee Buns (I make 12 mini buns)
(Recipe from 我会烘焙 I can bake by Agnes Chang)

Basic Sweet Bun Dough (I halved the recipe)
110ml water
30g egg (maybe have to reduce to 25g since my dough is sticky)
50g castor sugar
1/2 tsp salt
5g milk powder
200g bread flour
50g cake flour
1/2 tsp bread improver (optional)
1 1/2 tsp instant yeast
35g butter

1. Put all the ingredients (except butter) into the bread machine in the order listed above. Make a slight dip in the centre of the flour and sprinkle in the yeast.
2. Set to "DOUGH" and let it knead for 10 minutes. Re-start the machine and add in cold butter. After kneading for 20 minutes, stop the machine and take the dough out. Knead a bit more until the dough is smooth and does not stick.
3. Cover with a piece of damp cloth and leave to rise until it doubles in bulk (about 1 hour).
4. Punch down and knead again until smooth. Cover with damp cloth and rest for another 10-15 minutes.

Mexican Coffee Buns (I halved the recipe)
60g butter
60g castor sugar (I reduce to 40g)
1.5 eggs (I use 75g)
60g plain flour
1/2 tbsp instant coffee, mixed with
1/2 tbsp hot water, cooled
1/2 tsp coffee paste

1. Divide into 60g portions (I divide into 30g) and shape them into rounds. Place onto a baking tray, leaving enough space for the dough to rise. Leave the buns to rise till they double in size (about 45 minutes).
2. Topping: Cream butter and sugar till light. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Fold in flour and coffee till well-combined.
3. Put mixture into a piping bag and spirally pipe all over the surface of the buns. You can sprinkle some chocolate rice or chips or nuts according to your own preference.
4. Bake in a preheated oven at 210C (I use 200C) till golden brown for about 12-15 minutes.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

A new bread machine

6 April 2008

Updates for the past week...

I had 2 not very successful bakes, so not in the mood to post them up. I tried baking the Milk Loaf again using the borrowed bread machine, adding some green tea powder to it after I saw this Green Tea Milk Loaf. However, the bread didn't turned out to be good. The centre of the bread seemed to be a bit moist. No idea why it was like that. Didn't taste that good either so I didn't take any photos too.

Then I tried making the Thin-crust vegetarian pizza from Happy Homebaker. But again, it was not good. First of all, the crust wasn't thin at all. It was actually quite thick and hard to bite in. I had used the bread machine and set it to "Dough" function to knead the dough. Then I also overbaked the pizza and the cheese on top was burnt.

The good thing about this week is, I have just bought the Bluesky bread machine from Carrefour at the promotional price of $69.90.

Then, I happened to borrow a new book from the library called "Bread: The definitive guide to making bread by hand or machine". It has a basic guide of using the bread machine and the recipes show procedures of making breads both by hand or in a machine.

To try my new machine, I bake the simplest bread in that book, the Farmhouse White Loaf. It doesn't include any milk or egg so I thought it would be nice to try. If it turns out good, then I can prepare the ingredients at night and use the delay timer function to get freshly baked bread in the next morning.

No bread improver is used and this bread still taste quite soft and fluffy, except that the crust is quite thick. No idea how it will turn the next day as it was finished up in the same day (my father eats bread 3 times a day, haha!). It is best eaten toasted or spread with jams as it is just a pure plain bread.

Farmhouse White Loaf
(Recipe from Bread: The definitive guide to making bread by hand or machine)

Ingredients (500g loaf)
300g bread flour
1 tbsp butter (about 14g)
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp instant yeast
175ml water
2 tsp milk powder (optional, for richer and golden crust) (I forget to add)

1. Lift the tin out of the bread machine, fit the kneader blade then add the measured cold water and butter. Spoon in the flour then add the sugar and salt (make sure the flour covers the liquid completely and add sugar and salt in different corners of the tin). Make a slight dip in the centre of the flour and sprinkle in the yeast.
2. Insert the tin into the bread machine. Shut the lid and set to basic white bread, select size of loaf, and medium crust (I choose light crust). Press start.
3. At the end of the programme, lift the tin out of the machine. Loosen the bread with a plastic spatula then turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool.

For 750g/1kg loaf, or making by hand, refer to the book. Lazy to type all. :)

That's all for the long post!