Monday, July 30, 2012

Mum's Red Glutinous Rice Wine 红糟酒

I would like to share my mum's method of making Red Glutinous Rice Wine. The ingredients may not be that exact because the older generation usually does not measure things exactly in weight when they cook. So I just try my best to write the details. It's good for me too, I might need to refer back in future.

Here are the ingredients needed for making 红糟酒.

Use 1 kg of uncooked glutinous rice (糯米), add water (use lesser water than usual) and cook the rice in a rice cooker. When the rice is cooked, spread the rice in a large tray and leave it aside until the rice cools down to room temperature.

Here's the Red rice yeast (红曲米)and Wine yeast (酒饼). You can get them from Chinese medical hall.

Pound the red yeast till fine. Then pound the wine yeast till fine and powdery form. Mix the red yeast and the wine yeast together.

In a deep glass jar (wash and air-dry the jar before using), fill in a layer of rice, followed by a layer of yeast mixture. Continue to fill in with alternate layers of rice and yeast until done.

Sprinkle some cool boiled water (don't use unboiled tap water) at the top layer.

Here's how it looks. Close the jar and leave it in a cool dark place. On the 3rd day, you can give the mixture a good stir with a clean and dry spoon. Then leave the jar closed and store it until the 21st day when it is ready to harvest. In between, if you check and find that there's a separate layer of  rice and liquid, you can stir the mixture evenly again.

This is the 红糟酒 after 21 days. Mum decided not to put it too long and harvest it.

Fill them in separate containers and put it in fridge to store.

You can also filter the mixture to separate the rice wine (红糟酒) and the wine lees (红糟). Store the wine lees in the fridge. Heat the rice wine till boiling, remove from heat and cool down, fill the wine a in bottle, you can keep it at room temperature and use it for cooking. Both the rice wine and the wine lees can be kept for years.

There are some beliefs that the old generation practise when making this rice wine. One of them is to leave the jar in a corner where no one can see to avoid people looking at or people talking about it. Women should not make this during that time of the month. When you are filling up the jar, if you drop some rice on the table/floor, do not pick up and put back in jar because it may be contaminated. All these may result in the rice wine turning sour or become spoiled.

Lastly, there are many different methods of making this rice wine. The above method is used by my mum who has made these many times. If I miss out any details, I will add it after confirming with my mum. Hope you enjoy this post. :)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Hei Mama Egg Tarts 黑妈妈祖传蛋挞


Hei Mama Egg Tarts is a very hot recipe among the Chinese bloggers and receive very good ratings. The recipe originates from a Chinese blog by Hei Mama (黑妈妈) posted in year 2009. So that's how its name comes from. Along the years, it has also been modified and adapted by many bloggers and readers. Some of them never give credit to the original recipe!

What I love about these egg tarts is the silky smooth filling! The original recipe did not explain the method of making the tart pastry. I found Angel's version very well explained. She tried 2 methods of making the pastry. The Rub-in Method (cold butter) gives a more buttery and flaky crust, while the Easy Method (melted butter) tastes more crunchy like cookies. I have only tried the rub-in method.

Hei Mama Egg Tarts (makes about 20 tarts)

120g sugar
350g water
5 eggs, lightly beaten
100g evaporated milk

1. Heat up water and sugar until sugar dissolves. Leave it to cool.
2. Then add in beaten eggs and evaporated milk. Mix well, sieve the egg mixture and set aside.

300g plain flour
2 tbsp custard powder
2 tbsp milk powder
1 tbsp sugar
1 egg
200g butter

Rub-in Method (cold butter) (by CBL)
Cut cold butter into small cubes. Combine flour, custard powder and milk powder and mix well. Rub in the cold butter, add sugar, mix well and add beaten egg, mix to form a soft dough (do not knead). Wrap with cling wrap and refrigerate before use.

Easy Method (melted butter) (by CBL)
Melt butter. Combine all dry ingredients and mix well, add melted butter and beaten egg. Using a pair of chopsticks mix to form a soft dough. Wrap with cling wrap and refrigerate before use.

1) Divide the pastry dough equally into 20 pieces about 30g each (depending on your mould size). Press the dough into tart moulds evenly.
2) Fill into the tarts till 90% full. Bake in preheated oven at 180 deg C for 20 mins.

Recipe from: 黑妈妈 and Cook.Bake.Love

Monday, July 16, 2012

Gardens by the Bay

Last week, my mum and I went to this Singapore's latest National Gardens - Gardens by the Bay, Bay South, just opened on 29th June. Even though the weather wasn't really good, there was already a big crowd.

The Supertree Grove is surely one of the main attraction of the Gardens, as everyone seems to be posing in front of the Supertrees for photo-taking (到此一游!). I'm lucky to take one photo without any people obstructing my view! There are 12 Supertrees located at the Supertree Grove. The other 6 Supertrees are placed in clusters of threes at the Golden and Silver Gardens.

If you are not afraid of heights, you can go up to walk along the OCBC Skyway, a 128-metre long walkway that connects two of the Supertrees ($5/adult, $3/child) for a panoramic view of the entire Garden.

We didn't go up the OCBC Skyway because there was a queue for the tickets and I told myself to come back another time when it is less crowded. Smart decision I made, because not long after, it started to rain and I saw people who were already at the Skyway were stuck up there with no place to take shelter. Pity those people. So choose a good weather to visit!

While it was raining, we went into the Supertree Dining area. It looks like but it isn't a foodcourt like we expected. It has 5 different restaurants in it and each has a different entrance. And you are not allowed to go in and sit if you are not ordering any food. We went into the Hill Street Coffee Shop, thinking of getting some bread and toast for tea-break. Unfortunately, all the bread and toast were sold out, some other items also sold out. There were limited choices and we didn't want a full meal, so we went out without ordering anything. I hope they can improve on the food choices. :(

A view of the Flower Dome and Cloud Forest Conservatories from the Dragonfly Bridge.

Some of the flowers in the Chinese Garden.

The entrance at the Dragonfly Bridge, the Dragonfly Lake, view of Singapore Flyer and spotted an Avocado tree planted by Jason Mraz on the official opening day.

So this ends our short visit to the Gardens. Hope to be back again when the crowd is gone. It is a huge place with many little gardens to visit and we have only explored a small part of it. Some of the trees and plants look like they are just planted and there are few flowers and fruits growing. There's also a light and sound show at 7.45pm and 8.45pm every night to watch.

On a sidenote, while the Gardens is free to enter, the 2 conservatories admission fees of $20/adult, $15/senior citizen, $12/child for local residents is a little pricey. You can easily spent over a $100 for a whole family including meals. I think the Gardens should be a place not just for the rich. Lowering the price for local residents will be great.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

5th Blogoversary Giveaway Results!

The response to my 5th Blogoversary Giveaway is unexpectedly good! I guess the Cute Animals Square Baking Cups are really cute. Who can resist!

Too bad, I only have 3 sets to giveaway and I have to disappoint the other 89 readers. :(

The lucky 3 winners are numbers:
10. Alice
23. June Goh
88. 董夫人

Please email me your mailing address asap to

Thank you for the active participation!

I still have these baking cups available for sale. Do give my little shop some support or give me some ideas and suggestions. 多谢!:)

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

A Small Small Giveaway for my 5th Blogoversary!

I never seem to remember the date when I started my blog and have never celebrated it before. And again I'm almost 2 weeks late for my blog's 5th Blogoversary!

Wow! Never realize my blog is that "old". Though I'm not really writing my blog very frequently nowadays, at least I make it a point to continue. It is not easy but is not impossible too. I know many bloggers who started around the same time as me are no longer blogging anymore. Miss those friends. If you still reading this, say a "hello" to me here!

So I'm having a little giveaway here. These cute little Cute Animals Square Baking Cups! I have 3 sets (15 pcs each) to give away. Just leave a comment "So cute! I want!" below (before 10 July) and I will pick 3 lucky winners (restricted to Singapore and Malaysia addresses only)!

Opening of Small Small Baker Shop!

3 July is another new date for me to remember. Today is the official opening of my unofficial shop. ;P Nothing much, just to sell away some of my stuffs when I get too enthusiastic with buying.

Cute Animals Square Baking Cups
It is a square baking cup with cute animals on 4 different sides. Perfect for Hokkaido Chiffon Cupcakes.
S$3.00 for 15 pcs