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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

White Boule


This recipe was shared by a Facebook member in one of the baking groups. She used wholemeal flour but I ran out of that flour so I replaced with bread flour.  Turned out pretty good!

White Boule using Liquid Starter Method
adapted from here

Not a beautiful sight but this is what makes the bread delicious!

Liquid Starter:

80 g Sour Cream (I used yoghurt)
120g Hot Water (I used warm water because I was afraid hot water might kill all bacteria in the yoghurt)
50g Cold Water 
2.5g yeast
135g Bread flour (orginal recipe uses whole meal but I ran out of this flour)

Put the following ingredients in the order and mix them well. Leave them in a warm environment for 1-4hr or overnight in the fridge for a slower fermentation rate up to a maximum of 48hr. I prepared mine in the evening and leave it in the fridge till the next morning when I took it out and leave it in room temperature to thaw out before moving to the next step. 
You should see plenty of activity on the starter. It doubles in quantity and turns bubbly while sitting out on the counter to thaw.
Ready to proof

Main Dough:
200g Bread Flour 
2.5g instant yeast
7g salt

When the starter is ready for use, add the rest of the dry ingredients together except salt. Gradually add salt while kneading the dough until it is soft and pliable and passed the window pane test.  Leave in the mixing bow to proof until doubled in size then pour it into a lightly floured surface and de-gas. Shape into a boule and place it on a baking sheet or in a french oven. Allow to rise again for the final proofing before baking.
Golden crust!

Original suggested baking time is as follows:-

200 degC for first ~20mins
180 degC for the remaining ~15mins

I baked mine in a french oven at 190C for 40 minutes.
Chewy insides with crispy crust, so delicious!
Topped with cheese, egg and bacon with a dash of pepper ...Yum!

Yum!

I can't stop eating!

Almost gone! :P

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Pumpkin Chiffon Cake


We are now in the middle of October can you believe it? The monsoon season is at its full blast here, creating havoc during peak hours…more gloomy days ahead!  This pumpkin chiffon cake is far from gloomy with it's bright cheerful color, taste delicious and soft and fluffy too! A great cake to brighten up your day:D

Pumpkin Chiffon Cake adapted from here

Ingredients (makes a 22cm chiffon pan):

120 g pumpkin (without peel), steamed and mashed
50 g vegetable oil
50 g milk
¼ tsp salt
6 egg yolks (± 130 g)
120 g super fine flour or cake flour

6 egg whites (± 240 g)
¼ tsp cream of tartar
120 g fine granulated sugar


Methods:

In a mixing bowl, beat together egg yolks, oil, milk and salt till foamy. Then add in mashed pumpkin and fold in flour with a spatula till just blended.
In a separate mixing bowl, beat egg whites with medium speed till soft peak then add in cream of tartar and sugar in batches (3-4 times). Beat with high speed between each addition and continue to beat till stiff.
Transfer one quarter of egg white into egg yolk batter, mix with spatula till combined. Fold in remaining egg white gradually.
Transfer batter in chiffon pan and bake at 170°C for 35-40 minutes. (for my oven, it is at 150C for 45 minutes)
Invert cake immediately and cool completely before removing from pan.


This post is linked to the event Little Thumbs Up (Oct 2014 Event: PUMPKIN) organised by
 and hosted by Eileen (Eileen's Diary)





Sunday, October 12, 2014

Pumpkin Jam

When I saw this very simple but tasty jam is made from pumpkin, it got me curious!  With the addition of yoghurt drink and lemon juice in it, I just have to try it too! So here it is, a very unique taste with texture that somehow reminds me of the coconut jam called kaya:)
This jam is really refreshing!

Thanks to Ancoo for sharing this lovely jam.

Ingredients:-

350g Pumpkin
2 bottles (200ml) Yakult (original flavour) - I can only find the 80ml bottles here so I just used 3 x 80ml 
1/2 tbsp Lemon juice or to taste
2 tbsp Sugar or to taste
Blended into this smooth texture before cooking to desired texture

Method:
Clean pumpkin and deseed. Cut to wedges and steam pumpkin with skin on for about 15 minutes or till pumpkin becomes soft. (I skinned and cut the pumpkin into chunks before steaming)
Remove pumpkin flesh from skin with a spoon. Blend pumpkin (net weight about 250g) to smooth.
Combine blended pumpkin, yakult, lemon juice and sugar together in a pot. Stir well and bring to boil. Lower heat and keep stirring the pumpkin mixture for about 20-25 minutes until thickened. (Mine took longer because of the extra 40ml of yoghurt drink)
Pour jam into clean jar and allow to cool completely before putting it in the fridge.

I love the sweet and tangy taste of this bright looking jam that is so autumn

 This post is linked to the event Little Thumbs Up (Oct 2014 Event: PUMPKIN) organised by
 and hosted by Eileen (Eileen's Diary)

Monday, October 6, 2014

Cheese Butter Cupcakes




A yummy treat which is moist, cheesy and buttery with fine tender crumbs and you will find that it is hard to say no to. I baked this to clear all my leftover ingredients from the fridge.

Recipe largely adapted from Adora's Box….

Adapted from here

Ingredients:-

150g AP Flour

200g butter (Salted)

95g cream cheese

3 eggs (60g each)

1 tsp baking powder

70g fine sugar

1/3 cup condensed milk

1 tsp vanilla extract (I used homemade)

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:-

Preheat the oven to 350° F/ 175° C.

Whisk the flour and baking powder together. Cream the butter and the sugar together until light and fluffy.

Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Next add in the cream cheese, condensed milk and vanilla and mix for about one minute.

Lastly add in the flour and beat on low for one minute until well combined. Scrap down.

Using an ice cream scoop, fill lined cupcake or muffin tins. Do not overfill the paper cases. Top each with 1 tbsp. of grated cheese.

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the tops are browned and a cake tester comes out clean.


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Japanese Cotton Cheesecake - revisited

Just unmould
Sides shrank away from the pan making it easy to unmould
I have recently been bitten by the baking bug of this Japanese Cotton Cheesecake after reading Dr Leslie Tay's (no relations to me) experiments on this cake.  He was on a quest to bake the perfectly smooth top cake and finally succeeded.  I, of course, being the great copy cat that I am (:P), quickly proceeded to try out his final successful method of baking this cake. It took me a whole kg of cream cheese before I managed to set the timing according to my oven! Well, I saw in his FB page recently that using the wrong (read cheaper) brand of cream cheese can also affect the result so make sure you get the better brand if you want a higher chance of success; although I must say, I still use the cheaper brand and still managed to get this beautiful cake:P

Beautiful fine crumb and smooth top at last!
Here's how I did it with some adjustments to the timing as I believe different ovens have different temperature settings.

Japanese Cotton Cheesecake adapted from ieatishootipost

Ingredients:-

Yellow Team
250g Philadelphia cream cheese (1 block)
6 egg yolks
70g castor sugar (This is half of the total 140g)
60g butter (1/4 block)
100 ml full cream milk
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest (or lemon essence) (optional)
60g cake flour
20g cornflour
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp Vanilla extract (optional)

White Team
6 egg whites
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
70g castor sugar (This is half of the total 140g)
Method:-

 Prepare the an 8″ round baking pan. Line the bottom and grease the sides with butter, then dust with caster sugar (I'll just dust with normal flour next time as I find the side of the cake sticky as a result of the sugar coating). Get ready a 10″ round baking pan for water bath.

1. Melt cheese with butter and sugar (70g) over waterbath. Whip using a whisk.  Remove from heat and add egg yolks and continue whisking.  Add milk,  vanilla, lemon juice, salt and whisk. Gently whisk in the flour. Set aside.

2. Next whisk the egg whites and add sugar (70g) half way till just before firm peaks. When you lift the whisk, the meringue should droop and hang about 4 cm down.  Fold the whites to the batter. You should end up with a batter that is quite runny such that you don’t need to smoothen the surface after you pour into pan. The batter should come up to 1.5cm from the rim of he pan. It should rise no more than 1cm.

Bake in water bath in preheated oven in this way:

200C – 15 minutes until top is golden brown

160C – 30 minutes with foil to tent the top to prevent further browning

Switch off oven but do not open the oven door. Allow the cake to sit for another 20 minutes.

Remove water bath and return cake into the oven still tent with foil.  If you oven has bottom heat function, use it. Switch on the oven again and set at 120C and bake the cake for the last 10 minutes.  The purpose I am doing this is to dry the bottom. This step is totally optional.

Open the oven door slightly and let the cake cool in the oven for 30 minutes before removing and unmould for complete cooling. To unmould, simply place a plate over the top of the cake mould and invert the cake on to the  plate. Remove the paper lining and invert the cake on to a cooling rack.  Cool completely before slicing. Better option is to chill it for cleaner cut.



So totally satisfying to see my cake did not crease even after it is completely cooled! :D


Saturday, September 20, 2014

Champion Garlic Bread


When I saw Zoe baked this garlic bread, I was so tempted as her bread looks so soft and delicious.  I know my sons love garlic bread too so I baked it as soon as I ran out of bread.  I cut the slit too deep and ended up with opened bread lol!  Never mind, the taste was very good still. Do give it a try!
One bite and I am in garlic heaven lol!
Champion Garlic Bread adapted from Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids

Makes 6
I am just putting in the bread maker method to shorten the recipe:P

For the roasted garlic butter:
1 head garlic, unpeeled
1 tbsp olive oil
50g unsalted butter, softened- I used salted butter
3 tbsp minced fresh parsley leaves - I used scallions
1/2 tsp salt - omitted

Preheat oven to 425°F or 200°C fan forced.

Cut top off garlic head. Place garlic on a piece of aluminum foil; drizzle with olive oil. Fold edges together to seal. Bake 30 mins and allow garlic to cool completely.

Squeeze cooked garlic into a medium bowl. Garlic will be soft and sticky. Add butter, parsley salt and pepper, stirring to combine. Set aside and wait for the bread dough to be ready.

For the champion bread dough:
300g bread flour
25g sugar
1 tsp salt
15g unsalted butter, soften at room temperature
3/4 tsp instant dry yeast
200ml milk, lukewarm* - I just use milk direct from fridge




*The milk in this recipe doesn't require scalding but need to be lukewarm or at least room temperature for efficient proving.

Using a breadmaker, mix all dough ingredients and knead into a smooth and elastic dough (should pass the window pane test) and allow it to prove for 1 hr. At this point, you can either store the dough in the fridge to use it on the next day or use it now.

After proofing, divide dough into 6 equal portions, then allow to rest for another 10 mins. Flatten each portion of dough, spread a thin layer of garlic butter and roll it into oblong shape. Repeat the same shaping method with the rest of the dough. Place them on a baking tray lined with baking paper and allow them to rise for another 1 hr or until doubled in size.

Chill the left-over garlic butter in the freezer until firm.

Egg wash for baking:
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp milk

Preheat oven to 180°C or 160°C fan forced.

Beat both egg yolk and milk roughly with a fork until combined.

Apply egg wash on the surfaces of the dough. Cut the center of each with sharp knife. Place 1/6 of the frozen garlic butter onto the slit. Repeat this step with the rest of the dough.

Bake at 180°C (or 160°C fan forced) for 17 mins or until golden brown. Transfer the breads immediately onto a wire rack to cool. Serve when they are slightly warm or at room temperature.


Soft and fluffy, very satisfying!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Chocolate Chips Cookies





It's been a while since I last baked chocolate chips cookies, two years to be exact when I tried out David Lebovitz's giant size chocolate oats/raisins cookies so when I got this bag of semi sweet chocolate chips with a recipe at the back, I just had to bake me some.  THis is how it's done:-

Chocolate Chip Cookies
Ingredients:
170g butter, softened
60g caster sugar
100g brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
220g AP flour
2 cups chocolate chips (I used semi sweet)
1 cup (about 90g) rolled oats (my addition) ~ can substitute with chopped nuts of your choice


Method:

1.  Cream butter with both sugar until creamy and smooth.
2. Add eggs one at a time and mix until combined.
3. Add vanilla extract and mix on medium speed until well combined.
4. Sift baking soda and salt with flour and slowly add to the butter mixture with the mixer running on low speed.
5. Lastly add the oats and chocolate chips and mix until just combined.
6. Place spoonfuls of batter on a silpat or parchment paper lined baking sheets and bake at 170C for 12 minutes or until desired doneness.  If you wish to have crispy cookies, you can bake another 2-3 minutes.
7.  Cool on rack and store in air tight container.



These cookies certainly didn't last long in my house! Yummy dunked into milk or enjoy it with a nice hot cup of coffee!


I'm joining Best Recipes for Everyone September 2014 Event Theme: Chocolate Wonderland hosted by Fion of XuanHom's Mom.