Cakes and Cookies, Desserts

Biskut Dahlia (Malay Butter Cookies)

Eid is round the corner. And so I decided to bake another cookie I havent tried. These Malaysian cookies called Dahlia are so easy to make but I had such a horrible time pumping the dough out. They are beautiful, though and melt in your mouth.

I followed popular Malaysian YouTube Che’ Nom for this recipe, but I think I might try other recipes. Though they turn out soft, they were too soft and powdery in my mouth. But they do look so gorgeous and I am sure, look pretty in my pink Pyrex canister. Even though I have no idea who will be visiting me this year, given the stringent measures here we have to eliminate COVID.

The ingredients are so easy. 250g softened butter, 1 cup of corn flour, 1 cup of powdered sugar, 1 cup of custard powder, 1 egg yolk, and 2 cups of plain flour. Actually, for the flour the advice was not to add all in but to eyeball how much you need to form a soft dough.

So after mixing the ingredients above, this was my soft dough. It was a beautiful dough.

This was the device I bought for ‘beginners’. One can use a star nozzle and a piping bag but that apparently takes practice. But this was not easy either! Obviously, I am a novice when it comes to all things cookies.
The device is so small, that after three pumps, we had to refill it with dough. And this recipe, as with other recipes for this cookie I am sure, produces few cookies. For this recipe, we got 79 cookies exactly.
The chocolate chip center makes it so pretty!
The flower petals stay intact!
Ready to be bottled and filled in the pink canisters next week!

Check out my Eid/Raya table next week when I fill my canisters with cookies, crackers, nuts and more! Who’s coming over to my house, now? lol. Die, pandemic, die. I curse you for ruining my Eid for two years in a row.

Poultry, Snack, Western

Quick and Easy Creamy Chicken Mini Pies

I’m a working mom. Yes, I do have a helper but that doesn’t mean the helper does everything so I do my bit too. So often, I find myself in the kitchen trying something new for the family to try.

Growing up, my mother used to make for us chicken pies. From scratch, mind you. She’ll make the pastry herself and the filling and voila! As little kids, all we had to do was pop one in the mouth. Ok, several mouthfuls. They were delicious and something my brother and I always looked forward to.

But, like I said, I’m working a full time job. But I do want to make pies. So I found an easy way and that’s to use ready rolled shortcrust pastries. Just cut them into rounds, place on a muffin tray, add the filling, brush the tops with and egg wash and then done! In the oven they go.

I like this brand because it’s vegan. And the slight
saltiness is perfect!
Spray muffin tray with olive oil spray can, add the pastry, filling and top it with a small disc of the pastry.
My filling is super easy. 500g of chicken breasts, cubed and seasoned with Korean seasoning of salt and pepper (I love to use theirs but regular salt and pepper will do), cubed potatoes and peas. I seasoned the mixture after frying garlic in olive oil and adding the chicken and potatoes with a teaspoon of curry powder and three teaspoons of sweet smoked paprika. Then add the peas and finally 200g of cooking cream. Then because I had a whole bunch of frozen basil, I chopped them up and put inside the mixture. Cook till reduced.
The cooked ready to be filled creamy chicken potato and peas filling.
Prick the tops with a fork and the. Brush with egg wash. Bake in oven at 190 degree Celsius till brown.
Yummy chicken pies!! They’re rustic looking!
Beautiful to look at and delicious eaten hot!

If a busy working mom can do this in less than an hour, so can you! 😆

Desserts

No Bake Chocolate Tart

A simple tart, I followed this recipe but I realised some part didn’t work. The Oreo chocolate was fine but the 450g to 100ml cream ratio didn’t work for my chocolate pellets. No matter because cream comes in 200g packets here so I had extra to ensure my chocolate filling turned out smooth and luscious.

Using the bain Marie method with more cream added.
Filling the chocolate ganache over the chilled cookie crust base.
Decorated it with fruits just like the website but sprinkled coarse good quality seasalt once the tart has been chilled.
A delicious decadent rich dessert. Perfect for breaking fast.
Meat, Western

Beef Cheeks Burger

My first time ever cooking beef cheeks! I had seen this at the premium butcher and decided to try it. Beef cheeks takes an extremely long time to cook, but when it’s done, it’s so soft and gelatinous. Well, not that gelatinous, but definitely it doesn’t have the firm meaty texture of regular cuts of beef.

I decided to just cook them simply. My supermarket ran out of non-alcoholic red wine so what I did was to first sear the beef cheek, and then in my cast iron enamel pot, simmer it with a whole bottle of passata, chicken stock, lots of rosemary sprigs, garlic, a dash of Maggi seasoning (or Worcestershire sauce), salt. Because this took almost three hours to cook! The resulting sauce was soooooo sweet! But like I swore to my mom who had come to visit that night, I did not add any sugar! The sweetness really came from the hours of simmering, rendering the tomato passata sweet naturally.

The next day, I turned the beef cheeks into a burger. It was the bomb! Soft buttered toasted buns, alfalfa sprouts, baby spinach leaves, beef cheeks and slather some of its sauce over.

I doubt I’ll be making this again not because it’s not delicious, but nobody in the family liked the soft gelatinous texture of beef cheeks. Oh, well. At least I enjoyed my cheeks!

Chinese, Sides, Singapore, Snack

Chicken and Crabstick Wontons

I think I’ve perfected in making wontons, my way. The kind where the family cannot stop eating and where everything will be gone in seconds!

I’ve learnt that the secret is really to make the filling moist and flavourful. In the supermarket, they’re selling these small ready cut crab sticks. Yes, I know it’s processed but they add so much flavour and softness contrast to the dense minced chicken. For the chicken, I used tender fillet cute and just blend them. But I think my secret ingredient that the family likes without knowing what it is – carrots! Not traditional Chinese, I know but it adds natural sweetness to the filling.

Seasoning: soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, white pepper, cornstarch.

Method: Deep fry is the only way to go, baby! There is no way you can get crispy juicy wontons by air frying them…

Mix minced or blended chicken tenders, small cubes of crab sticks (use fresh prawns is ok too, I’ve done it before), shredded carrots and then season with soy sauce, oyster sauce, white pepper and a tiny teaspoon of cornflour/cornstarch. I don’t add salt but if you want more flavour, you should add. For us, since we eat wontons with a mix of chilli sauce and Indonesian kecap manis, I see no need for salt.
Use good quality square wontons.
Deep fry and enjoy hot! Warm is also ok. But seriously, who can wait.