To celebrate the nation’s 55th birthday, I decided to make this red and white cake. It’s meaningful actually. It’s symbolic of the historical ties we had with the UK and it was also the first cake I learnt to bake! I was only a Sec 1 13 year old girl then, and they made us do this for our Home Econs practical test. I still remember this so vividly. I was so scared of the gas oven back then, and made my partner turn it on most times. For the exam, I remember asking my mom for a dollar so I could get a purple orchid to decorate my piece. I put my purple orchid in a small vase on the tray. I never knew how much I got but I will never forget baking this cake for the exam. 😂
And now decades later, I’m baking this again. I don’t have my Sec 1 Home Econs book anymore so I scoured the net and settled on Mary Berry’s recipe. How very British. 😄
However, after this was done, I must say this recipe is really good! The cake was very moist and very soft! I couldn’t bake it as long as suggested because mine was done ten minutes earlier. But the result was perfection! Another trick I got was to buy one of those cake liners with handles! I reckon I’ll be baking now more because of these liners I got from Amazon. They were amazing and come in various sizes. You can get them here: Cake Liners
I really recommend Mary Berry’s Recipe. And to my country, Majulah Singapura! 🇸🇬
I’ve been wanting to make this for the longest time after watching it on YouTube by JOC – Just One Cookbook. I just love the easy way she presents recipes.
And so I did. A few problems though for the novice-ish cook.
1. I couldn’t flip the crepes. They would tend to tear so in the end I decided to cook just one side of it
2. I did the paper cross thing she did to life the entire cake. Excel that…once you lift and place it into the cling film bowl, I couldn’t seem to take out the paper underneath! It was a two person job lifting and manipulating the cake so the papers would come off
3. Our heat and humidity. By the time I finished assembling the cake, the cream has melted and they all kind of slipped off. And the more I tried to remove the paper underneath, the messier it got!
But all went well after I managed to put it in the fridge for two hours. After that, the shape held well and the cut was beautiful. And I could cover slight tears with the powdered matcha!
So I was channel surfing and caught a small segment of a food show featuring Donna Hay and some very adorable kids. They were making a carrot cake. Totally inspired, I made some for this morning’s breakfast and to bring some over for teatime later at the parents.
Try as I might, I couldn’t find the exact recipe of hers which she featured on the show. Maybe because I’ve no idea what the title of the show was! But I did find her recipes for carrot cake and carrot cake muffin. And so I used it but added some things which she did on the show – like mixed spice and ground cinnamon!
The outcome was quite delicious. It’s moist, definitely moist, but also moorish? It’s thick. Ok by Asian standards perhaps this is huge! One piece of this muffin and I’m full! But it is delicious.
I also copied her maple syrup cream cheese frosting. In the show, she added ricotta but as you know ricotta is not easily available here and Super expensive so I added one tablespoon of clotted cream instead.
I grew up eating egg tarts. Not the Portuguese or Macau egg tarts – those only became popular when I was an adult. The kind that kids loved then in the 80s and before were the soft sweet crusted Hong Kong style egg tarts that are always sold in our local bakeries.
Recently because of the lockdowns everywhere, my friends who are also all over the world now have been baking this piece of nostalgia. And even though I can easily get my egg tarts here, I decided to make my own and boy was I glad I tried making my own! Nothing beats freshly baked egg tarts straight out of the oven.
There are many recipes out there on the Internet. But this one that I eventually decided to follow is simple. The only downside to this is that it is a tad too sweet but luckily for me I didn’t allow the sugar to melt completely into the water so the sweetness was just right. What I liked about this recipe is that the dough is really flaky and buttery.
Every Chinese New Year or Hari Raya (Eid ul Fitr) will never be complete without families making and eating these delicious buttery sweet and sour pineapple tarts. And being in a beautiful multi-racial country, I get to enjoy everyone’s festivities many times over. ☺️
Earlier in the year before COVID-19 interrupted our lives, I already received a bottle of pineapple tarts from the office management for Chinese New Year. Now, with the Circuit Breaker in place and Hari Raya round the corner, I decided to finally conquer my fears and make my mother’s pineapple tart recipe.
It’s a daunting task. You definitely need helpers at hand. However, you can halve the recipe or even quarter it and make a small batch. Here is the original recipe:
For the tart pastry:
1. 500g butter (use the best you have. I used French butter and I think that made all the difference)
2. 3 whole eggs (some people use 2 yolks and 1egg but that will result in a delicious but crumbly pastry. Delicious I know but difficult to handle)
3. 900g plain all-purpose flour
4. 1/4 tsp of yellow colouring. You can omit this.
For the pineapple filling: I cheated. I used a store bought ready made filling but added one pineapple of my own. To make your filling from scratch, you need to grate 2-3 fresh pineapples, and then cook it down on a Low flame till it becomes jelly like. Add sugar. You’ll know when it’s ready when all the liquid has evaporated and you can form balls from the pineapple.
And then the rest is easy. Laborious work but easy.
First step is to make the dough. Using a mixer is easiest but you can certainly make this using just a wooden spoon, and a lot of muscle power.
Once the dough is rested, it’ll be easy to roll. If you can’t roll it, just use your cleaned palms and pat down as much as you can’t and then, using a tart cookie mould, cut the shape.