Archive | Baking RSS feed for this section

Peach Melba Buttercream Pudding with Seasonal Fruits

4 Dec

Christmas is around the corner. This is the time where everyone is travelling oversea. I was thinking this might be the year where I can finally have 4 weeks off and fly overesea just like most people I know, but guess not. I wasn’t allow to extend my leave… ūüė¶

Just before everyone part way – until we will see each other again in January – on Saturday we had our Christmas party that was planned almost 3 weeks ago.

This Christmas party is planned with a twist. I knew all of us can be a Masterchef when we are inspired. Hence everyone has to bring a dish and everyone in the party will vote for their favourite dish. We have 3 entrees, 2 mains and 3 desserts. ( one of the guys pull out from mains ).

I was allocated to make a dessert. I¬†agonised¬†for weeks on what to make. I wanted to challenge myself yet I knew I didn’t want to¬†disappoint¬†the party for bringing a dish that was still a work in progress and is not my best. I try not to overwhelm myself with an overly complicated dish driven with advanced techniques. Afterall, I have only learnt the difference between a whipping cream and a whipped cream. Mr T says, I should try to avoid any dish that requires oven for now… ūüė¶ (I haven’t have much luck with my baking recently, after a failed attempt on my cheese souffle)

I finally opt to make a pudding like dish, plus I get to try gelatine, which I never have experience on. It doesn’t requires alot of technique but I can still produce something pretty. I didn’t win with this pudding I made, but it was a crowd pleaser. I received a few positive comments and everyone¬†wiped¬†off their portion even though we all have reached our limits.

I found this recipe from Delicious РSimply the best.

The idea is a layer of buttermilk pudding and a layer of peach jelly. I think this will also works well with mango instead and I will try that 1 day, especially when this is the mango season. Also, experiment the finishing fruit pieces. Try kiwi. Try adding passionfruit pulps to the fruit pieces. Try crunchy fruits like apples or fruit jellies. Have fun trying!

(Photo taken by Claire)

My variation

I have reduced the sugar, as I would like the sweetness to come from the fruit pieces and the peach melba. Also, I don’t like dessert that is too sweet and sugary.

I have also reduced the size of each serving which is just right for each of us, with all the food we have to eat and already eaten, the buttermilk pudding can be overwhelming for the already filled tummies.

Also, I would think using canned peaches will also be much more convenient, so one won’t have to stress about peeling the skin off while having to worry about wrapping KK presents, showering and needing to put on make up – all this in 1 hour.

Peach Melba Buttermilk Puddings with Seasonal Fruits (adapted from Delicious РSimply the best as featured in previous post)

Serves 6 standard glasses or 16 small cups

5 titanium-strength gelatine leaves* (perhaps try it with any gelatine leaves?)

600ml thickened cream

1/2 cup caster sugar

2 tsp vanilla extract

400ml buttermilk

4 ripe yellow peaches (or use canned peaches)

Mixed fruit pieces to fill up the glasses

1) Soak 3 gelatine leaves in cold water for 5 mins to soften.

2) Place the cream, sugar, vanilla and buttermilk in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar.

3) Add the gelatine into the mixture and stir to dissolve. Remember to squeeze excess water out from the leaves

4) Strain the mixture through a sieve, as there are pieces in the buttermilk and we want the smoothest texture in the pudding.

5) Cool slightly and pour the mixture evenly among the glasses that will be used for serving. Set the pudding in the fridge for 3 hours or until it set.

6) Prepare the peach melba by softening the peach in boiling hot water. Cut a small cross on the bottom before adding peaches into hot water. Then remove the skin after it cools.

7) Place the flesh with the stones removed in a blender and puree until smooth. Then pass through a sieve. Meanwhile soften the last 2 pieces of gelatine leaves in cold water.

8) Warm the puree a little and add the last 2 pieces of gelatine leaves into the puree. Stir to dissolve again.

9) Add the peach mixture into the glasses after the 1st layer has set. Return to the fridge for another 2 hours or until set

Further tips

– Use ripped yellow peaches so is easier to peel the skin off after boiling and is much sweeter

– If you don’t have buttermilk, add 1 tbsp white vinegar to 1 class milk and stand for 5 minutes before using to home made buttermilk

– Use canned peaches.

– Passing the peach puree through the sieve is a pain, so allow time. Replacing this with bottled juices will not work as juices from the shops will be in clear liquid which will lose the colour on the 2nd layer.

– Make sure the first layer is set before pouring the 2nd layer or you won’t get the segregation

For people who are wondering who won:

The highly anticipated Mango Mousse

The underdog starter dish – Rockling with Oyster Mushroom and secret sauce

When piggy inspiration attacks!

19 Nov

My latest bake is an inspiration from Mr T internet’s find…



I almost did not complete the cupcakes because I messed up my first batch of frosting and was discouraged, I didn’t think I can produce these cute cupcakes or any decent cupcakes… Thanks to Mr T’s encouragement, I pursued a second batch of frosting. He then helped me made the ears and halved the marshmallows for the nose. When I saw them coming together again and the 2nd batch of frosting was not too bad, I became encouraged and hopeful again…

So, is really important to surround yourself with the right people when you are prsuing your dream…

I’m not a fan of royal icing or rolled icing so I decided to create this piggies with lemon cupcake topped with strawberry frosting.

Chocolate Suze has a great lemon cupcake with lemon curd recipe. Is so easy to make and the cupcakes turn out moist. For this little piggies, I have left out the lemon curd.

I have opted for a strawberry cream cheese frosting.The frosting recipe I found was in US conversion, which was confusing for me. So I won’t recommend using that for bakers who are not used to stick, ounces and oz. I messed up the frosting. It was watery and unusable for cupcakes. I was going to dump the mixture but turn it into a strawberry bread instead! Speaking of making the best out of a bad situation… (Thanks to Mr T’s encouragement!)

I found another recipe that uses the same ingredients here or use your favourite Strawberry cream cheese frosting to create the face.

After all the baking is done, here comes the fun part Рassembling the face. I used strawberry waffles for ears, marshmallows for nose and melted some chocolate drops to dot the eyes and nose.

Use the pink marshmallow for nose – is cuter ūüôā ¬†Melt chocolate to dot the eyes and nose.

That’s all and you’ll get yourself some yummy piggies. No piggies were harmed in the making!

The season for cookies baking…

21 Oct Cookies with coffee in my rose cup

I have being thinking… for this Christmas, I would really like to handmake something for my friends this year. I thought perhaps giving away handmade cookies as gift will be nice?¬†I have also contemplated about jam or sauces but I’m not very sure what is the shelf life of those. Perhaps I can do a combination – some cookies, some jam, some sauces? I’m not sure. For now, I will stick to cookies and I will let the world know if I come across any good sauces or jam recipes I can try.

This will be quite a project for me as I also need to think about the wrapping and packaging. I’m not quite good with handicraft after I have left primary school. So this is my culinary challenge for the days leading up to Christmas- finding the right Christmas gift I can bake/cook, that are presentable and enjoyable. I am planning on trying as much cookies recipes as possible. Finger cross, I can decide on a cookie recipe that I can perfect by the end of November.

The first cookies recipes I tried is the Becon Hill Cookies recipe from the 500 cookies (AUD$16.63)

500 cookies

Just to digress, I really enjoy this 500 series. I also own the 500 cakes (AUD $15.67 ), 500 cupcakes (AUD $15.67) and 500 breakfast and brunches (AUD $15.53).The recipes are easy to follow, contains variations for each recipes and is budget friendly. The recipes usually come with a short list of ingredients. One fall back with this series is that, it lacks technique specific instructions, so it can be tricky for a beginner cook or baker like myself. What I always do is that, I will first gain inspiration from the book and then research the technique online by googling for similar recipes.

So here goes… This is what the recipes calls for:

Chocolate Meringue Cookies with Pecan nuts

As I already had almond in my pantry, I decided to use that instead of pecan nuts.

Ingredients

I melted the chocolate with a double boiler. I learnt that it is important to make sure that the bottom of the bowl do not have contact with the water and stir it occasionally.

I also just learnt from baking911.com¬†that the temperature cannot go beyond 49 degrees¬†celsius¬†for dark chocolate. Really, when I was melting, I didn’t measure the heat. I think that’s why my chocolate is slightly thicker than it needs to be. However, it as still usable for me.

Melting chocolate with double boiler

I also made the mistake of adding the first batch of sugar first before adding the cream of tar tar and whisked it. Lucky for me, the mixture seems to turn out decent.

Becon hill mixture

The recipe has instructed to drop teaspoon size but as it was already 10.30pm at night and I was tired, my patience is lacking so I dropped almost a tablespoon size. I regret doing that as the cookie is too rich to eat in tablespoon size. Is best enjoy in smaller bite size.

Cookie drop

While waiting for the cookies to be baked, I used the egg yolk for noodle! So… I also learn that, I should ready myself for a bowl of noodle whenever any recipe requires egg white only.

Egg yolk in noodle while waiting...

Here comes the cookies…. ta – daaaa!

Zinnamon Becon Hill Cookies with Almond

The cookies came out too big… as expected. The cookies is best eaten half the size, due to the richness. So I broke the cookies up after it cools down a little.

I was really happy with the end result. It was crispy and hard on the outside, chewy on the inside. I store them in airtight containers. The next morning when I tried the cookies, it became soft. ¬†ūüė¶

I’m not sure what went wrong… and I’m not sure if that is how it suppose to be.

Thankfully the roasted almond and the chewy chocolate is keeping the cookies interesting. I am probably bias about it as I baked the cookies. Let me gauge the reaction from my friends and I will know if these cookies are acceptable.

I also found an interesting article on making meringue cookies at Joy of cooking

Cookies in the jar

Enjoy these cookies with a cup of tea or coffee… Happy Sunday.

Cookies with coffee in my rose cup

All the books mention are available at trusty book depository for free delivery ūüôā

 

%d bloggers like this: