Saturday, January 24, 2015

Vanilla beans

A good find for today! Its just like finding a treasure.  Vanilla beans.  If only i could avoid the synthetic flavors I would, but its quite expensive so it is sparingly used for special recipes only :).

Mission (note to self) find the plant,  so my recipes will be vanilla blissed! 

Below is the bean cut in half and the intense flavor of vanilla is in the black tiny seeds that you can scrape from inside the bean.

Below is the whole vanilla bean.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Fresh blueberry yogurt

A bowl of plain yogurt, a teaspoon of sugar and fresh blackberries.  Thats all it needs.  Freshen up your day with this breakfast!

Friday, December 05, 2014

How to make spaghetti sack lunch

How to make spaghetti sack lunch....

Sack lunch is the term for packed lunch without lunch box/containers that kidz have to bring on field trips. 

My daughter really likes to have spaghetti today, hence, mommy have to improvise spaghetti sack lunch without necessary container or tools to carry along with during field trips. Something they can just toss away after eating so they dont have to carry lunch boxes everywhere. 

Spaghetti wrapped in spring roll skin (vietnamese cuisine uses this a lot).  No mess! In the bag goes spaghetti for lunch and banana for snacks.   Easy! Just toss it away! 

She's so proud of it and took a pen for me to write something on the bag.. Oh sweet!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

PAVLOVA No. 2 with summer berries (strawberries,raspberries,blueberries and blackberries)


I have made pavlova before and is posted here: Pavlova recipe with a little bit of a famous history of the dessert.  Please read on a bit there if you like the to get the recipe.  

For this version, I didn't use whipped cream because, I just don't have it in the fridge, the thought of making it just came up quickly to compliment Hubby's lunch.  He had been working hard prepping for weekend lunch so, to equate the effort I came up with pavlova dessert as i happen to have the summer berries for the season on sale in the grocery store.

So i didn't have whipped cream to top it with, hence i just made custard and made it a little bit thicker than usual.  

I just think its easier to make meringue the night before you need the pavlova and leave it in the oven.  Put the oven at 250 degrees C, put off before putting the meringue in and leave it there till morning.  Pls avoid opening the door to check as the temperature would be affected.

I took some pictures for a guide.
Make the meringue:
4 egg whites
1 pinch cream of tartar, (alternatively salt can be used)
2 tsp. vinegar
1 ½ cup sugar
2 tsp. corn starch
1 tsp. Vanilla essence


1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. (Gas 4)
2. Cut baking paper into 5 inch squares (make 6 squares)
3. Draw a circle at bottom side of the baking paper. Use this as a guide when you put meringue in each portion. Set aside.
4. In a dry clean bowl, place the egg whites and cream of tartar.
5. Beat the egg white using electric beater until soft peak
6. gradually add sugar whilst continue beating until 
7. Add vinegar and cornstarch
8. Add vanilla essence
9. continue beating until stiff. The meringue must look smooth, silky and holds a stiff peak when you lift the beater.
10. In the prepared baking paper, spoon in the meringue making a circular pattern as per the guide, working from the center, create a small well and spread the meringue to the edge of the pattern. 
11. Pipe around the meringue to create a little well, where you will put the whipped cream later on.
12. Bake for 1 hour and half. Turn the oven off and leave the meringue to cool completely inside the oven. It is best to do this at night and leave the meringue in the oven overnight. The meringue should be firm and crisp.
13. Store the meringue in an airtight container until you will use them.

Spoon the meringue on a lined baking sheet and make a well in the middle but not
going through the bottom.  Leave room for a base.

It will look like this.  A base with a little room for the the topping.  

I made some spiky just for fun.

Making the custard is taking forever.  I just wish I had whipped cream and it
will be finished in a flash, but i unfortunately dont have.  But this is worth a trial for
flavor combination.  It was good. its just that it takes forever, but its worth the wait.

The final Look.

Review:  I would say, it was a good experiment on the flavor.  The making of the custard took forever to thicken, but the taste is phenomenal compared to whipped cream.

PS.  I love the meringue.  I took the extra bit to go with my morning coffee.  It reminds me of those meringue kisses when i was a kid.  Not so sweet, crispy outside and it turns chewy and mallowy in the tongue.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Why chew when you can drink? #4 Raspberries and black berries smoothie

Black berries

Mix in a blender until smooth.  Add ice cubes if desired.

Why chew when you can drink? #5

Honey lemon glazed pork loin with freen salad

Pan-roasted baby potatoes with herbs

Cut baby potatoes in half, season with salt and pepper and steam for 10 minutes.  Do not over cook.  Make sure they are half cooked only.

In a heavy bottomed frying pan, add 2 Tablespoons of vegetable oil. Add a few sprigs of rosemary, add the potatoes.  Occasionally shake the pan to move the potatoes whilst roasting so it won't stick to the pan.  Add dried basil.  Season with salt and pepper.

Perfect for serving on the side of any main dish.

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