Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Cream Filled Mini Buns

Those people that are close to me knows that I am totally a "dough" person. Meaning I cannot live without bread period. And close to 1/3 of the cookbooks I own are bread making cook books. Perhaps it's a skill that I wish to perfect some day or just because I simply love eating bread! The ways of making different kinds of bread is boundless! Sorry I get a little excited when it comes to the topic of bread making, lol! Seems like the passion is always there. (More like passion for eating...);) Enough about me, let's talk about today's bread: This post is a new recipe that I have been wanting to try for a long time now. In Mandarin, it's call "爆浆餐包", simple translation will be Cream Filled Buns. (No no, not explosive buns!)
If you have been to those chain bread stores in Singapore mall, you will notice they sell similar mini buns like mine. The bread store usually offers deals like buying 3 or 5 of these mini buns / pastries for a slightly cheaper price. Yeah, I am a big time sucker for those! Will usually pick like a variety especially since my little ones also enjoy those breads too. So this time round, I decided to give this mini cream filled buns a try. Although in the recipe book, there are like 8 different kinds of dough flavor to choose from, I just went with plain. :P Well, I figured that this is my first try, better just play safe a little. As for the filling, I made Oreo cream flavor since I knew the kids will enjoy it much better then plain sweetened cream.

Ingredients for Oreo Cream Filled Mini Buns:
Set A:
174g high protein flour (bread flour)
43g low gluten flour (cake flour)
13g milk powder
7g instant active yeast

Set B:
39g caster sugar
2 g salt
22g whole egg, lightly beaten
100ml water

Set C:
22g butter

Egg wash (1 egg yolk + 1 tbsp water)

200ml non-dairy whipping cream
2 tbsp confectioner's sugar
5 pieces of Oreo cookies with cream, blended till crumb stage

  • In a large mixing bowl, add in all of Set A ingredients in and mix well with a whisk.
  • Add all of Set A flour mixture with Set B ingredients and mix well until it becomes a soft dough.
  • Continue to beat / knead the dough till it reaches elastic and not sticky stage, which can be verified by using the "window stage".
  • Add in the butter in Set C and knead well till mix in.
  • Let the dough proof in a greased bowl and cover it. Allow it to proof for at least 90 minutes until the dough doubles.
  • After proofing, punch out the air and divide the dough to about 40g each. Roll round and seal any open edges and let proof again for another 15 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 180C and prepare a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
  • Brush the mini buns with egg wash and bake in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes till golden brown on the surface.
  • Remove from oven and let cool completely. At the meantime, prepare the cream filling. Whip the cream with the powder sugar till triple in volume and stiff peaks. Then gently fold in the Oreo cookie fine coolie crumbs in till evenly blended in. Chill the filling till it is needed.
  • Using a piping bag and 1cm opening tip, pipe the Oreo cream into the cooled mini buns. Try not to squeeze too much filling in as it will ooze out.
These little "babies" look like eggs from far! And as you can see I was greedy and piped in too much cream for it looks like it's about to burst any moment, lol!
A look at the inside....filled with creamy sweet Oreo cream...yum! The buns were delightfully soft and was a good combo with the creamy inside. ;) I can down a couple of these at one shot. ;)
My initial intention was to fill the buns with different flavor of cream filling, like chocolate, cream cheese flavor etc. However I was actually late for preparing for a dinner party that very I had to forgo the idea and settle with just Oreo flavor. :P A point to note is that these buns need to be consumed within a day if they have already been filled, else the moisture from the cream might get absorbed by the get the picture. Alternatively, you can use buttercream or fill the buns only before consuming. The buns are actually still soft on the third day. :) If you give this recipe a try, let me know how you like them. ;)

Okay, signing off now...hope you all have a great great day ahead. Cheers all!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Dim Sum Fried Carrot Cake & Simply Good Butter Cookies

I am sure many of you out there, including myself of course have tried and love the Hong Kong style Fried Carrot Cake @ any Dim Sum restaurant. That dish is a MUST for my family because both my kids loves it and would sometimes just eat that during the whole meal. :P I have always wanted to replicate this dish at home but for some reason it was being pushed aside every time. :P After a dim sum session with the family a couple weeks back and seeing my girls again enjoying the carrot cake at the restaurant made me even more determined. :) Result was better then expected *phew* and I kept wondering why had I not made it earlier!
This is actually not my first time making carrot cake. I remember my previous attempt was actually to make "Cha Kueh", since I am such a fan for it, lol! But I can firmly say my latter's recipe is actually a better one and also a keeper too! ;) The carrot was tender and yet firm enough to withstand the frying. So when biting in to it, it's crispy out and soft flavorful inside was so good! :D Enough chit chat, shall we all take a look at the recipe? Here it is:

Ingredients for Steam Carrot Cake:
Set A:
425g white carrot / turnip, peeled and shredded
340ml water

Set B:
2 shallots, peeled and chopped fine
2 tbsp dried shrimp, soaked and cut into smaller bits
4 to 5 dried mushroom, soaked in water till soft, then cut into small chunks
2 Chinese sausage, casing removed and cut into small chunks
2 tbsp vegetable cooking oil

Set C:
155g rice flour
15g corn flour
15g wheat starch powder
340ml chicken stock (or use 340ml water + 1 chicken bouillon cube)

  • In a large pot, add shredded carrot and water and start boiling mixture. Cook for about 5 to 8 minutes till the vegetables are slightly cooked. Do not throw about the water, leave the whole mixture together and set aside till needed.
  • In a saute pan, add vegetable oil @ medium heat and stir fry the shallots till fragrant. Then add in Chinese sausage, mushrooms and dried shrimp. Cook mixture for a couple minutes then add the carrot water mixture in. Let it stew for about 8 to 10 minutes and then off the fire. Set aside till needed.
  • In the meantime, prepare the steamer with rolling boil water and grease a 8" round steam pan lined with parchment paper.
  • In a large mixing bowl, add rice flour, corn flour and wheat starch in. Pour in the chicken stock and mix well. Then pour the carrot mixture into the flour mixture and stir well. The mixture will be lumpy and thick.
  • Pour it into the prepared steamer pan and let steam for about 40 minutes till cooked.
    Remove from steamer and let cool completely before cutting into it.
  • After cooling it, slice the kueh into about 5 am by 3cm rectangles. Prepare a frying pan and add enough cooking oil for frying the carrot cakes.
  • Fry each side of the carrot cake for about 4 to 5 minutes before flipping or till it is golden brown. Dish up and drain on paper towels. Serve with any condiments of your choice. :)

I was pretty happy with the result. Even my younger daughter justified that by eating about 5 pieces! She kept saying "It's really good Mummy." Hahaha...I guess that all I needed to know. ;) We finished everything at one go! Guess the next time I make it will have to be double the recipe. ;) If you try it out, let me know how yours turn out okay? Happy cooking!
Next item up is something that I have been "dying" to do for a long long time. It's actually just simple butter cookies, but using cute cookie cutters to cut them out. :) Nothing special I know, but it;s so fun! BTW, I collect cookie cutters...I see I buy, a little out of control but I love all of them! Shh....don't tell okay, lol! I have many ( seriously many more) cutters that I have yet got a chance to try out, but anyway, here are just 6 of them today...cute right?
Okay I admit I didn't do a good job on the cutting out for some...but I tell you it is not as easy as it looks! Some of the lines are so detail and fine, I had a hard time trying to remove cookie dough sucked in the cutter!
Here is a look at the cookie cutters themselves. Except for Miffy (the rabbit) and her bear friend (no clue the name), the rest are the usual Disney characters. If they come in Princess ones(i.e. Cinderella, Snow White etc)...I think my daughters will go crazy over them!
Fact: You want the best; use the best. I loveX3 President Butter, it's literally cream of the crop of all the other brands. It's buttery fragrance is unbeatable and if I can, I would use it for all my recipes...that is if I can (~~$$$$$~~) :P And of course, Madagascar Pure Vanilla extract is always my top choice too. Wondering about my recipe? I actually used the same one for from my Linzer cookies, one of my fave of all time....yum!
This is quite a delicate butter cookie recipe, I had to make sure I had to make sure not to use too much flour in the dough so as to make the cookie dough easy to handle. Simple, not really, I used up my whole afternoon doing these...just for 50 cookies. :P But knowing these cookies will be a hit, I finished my work with no complaints. :P My kids LOVE them...asking one after another....choosing the cute characters and claim one taste better then the other(the cutter looking ones that is). :P I was really glad it was well received and of course it goes without saying you'll see more of it in my future posts. :) Try it and you will know what I mean. Okay all, got to go now my friends , you all have a good day!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Soft Potato Wheat Loaf and Awards

It has been so long, too long in my perspective since I last made fresh bread. I have been waiting, holding back my "urge" to bake a batch that I would make myself contented. :) Why hold back you ask? It wasn't the right time and the right place as yet. Now that I am finally in my new house with my new oven and reunited with my KitchenAid mixer, it's one BIG happy reunion, lol! And alas the wait was all worth it! A few weeks back when my mom called me over for dinner, I knew the opportunity has arrived. :) I had been wanting to make some nice bread for her and been delaying it for so long. So I quickly went with one of my favorite soft bread recipe which I baked before from 孟老师的100道面包 and modified it a little and came up with this Soft Potato Wheat loaf bread.
Okay, this looks like some ordinary looking loaf, but it is so so soft! I knew from my past experience that using potato in the dough will result in the bread being super soft. ;) But of course the handling and kneading of the dough will require extra work since it will be a soft sticky dough. :P

Since this recipe is similar to the one I have posted before, I will not be retyping it out again here in this post. The main difference is I had replace about 40 to 45g of wholemeal flour (Prima brand) from the bread flour in the dough recipe to make it a wee bit more healthy. :) If you are interested to try this out, please kindly refer to my previous post.
See what I mean? See how the slices gently lay on each other, lol! Furthermore, the loaf was well baked, means the crust was there but not thick, and internal was all nicely risen and puffed. :) *thick skin....I mean me, not the bread*
A shot of a slice of the bread....okay I admit I am really happy with this, hahaha! So good to have fresh baked bread in the house again....the toasty smell filling the whole indescribable happiness for me. :D
Besides the loaf, I had some left over dough and I made 3 small pork jerky buns (肉干面包). I brought them over to my mum's and it was gone in minutes, even though everyone already stuffed themselves with my mum's delicious dinner, heehee. :D
A glimpse of my breakfast (half eaten already...sorry) the following morning. Happy? Contented? You bet I am, lol! You can have this too my friend, just get yourself in the kitchen and start baking. ;) No, no bread machine needed, just you and perhaps a good stand mixer (but your hands can do it too~!) will do. Even though it has been a super long wait of 6 months++, I was smiles again after this bake. Do try it out and let me know how it work out for you.
Before I sign off this post, I would like to thank dear DG for passing not 1 but 2 awards to me. ;0 Indeed it was a pleasant surprise! I had seen these awards lately being passed on to several of the fellow bloggers. And because of that, I will accept the awards and skip the passing on part, hope you don't mind DG. ;)
Thanks again to DG for these 2 lovely awards and wish I can be better blogger with much more interesting post in the future. Have a good week ahead to you all! Cheerios!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Elvis Presley's Whipping Cream Pound Cake

Sometimes simple is good, and sometimes simple can be simply delicious too! :) Today I want to introduce yet another wonderful recipe that will possibly become a family favorite. When I first saw it at Obsessed with Baking, I knew I had to try it out myself, else I won't sleep well at night, lol! And come-on, who doesn't like a slice of buttery good piece of cake? Me? Two please, lol! So here it is, this lovely, buttery Elvis Presley Whipping Cream Pound cake. :) Since the original post did mention that this recipe comes from Epicurious, but I'm presuming this is actually Elvis' favorite pound cake. And I like to thank Elvis for this simply delicious pound cake. ;)
This pound cake is very fine and to my opinion, as good as Sarah Lee (if not better) I guess the higher content of fat from the whipping cream does play an important part for this.
Perhaps if you are not too conscience about the higher fat, this is actually quite a wonderful desert to have and serve to your family. ;) Here is my version of the recipe, which I reduce the amount to a smaller quantity:

Ingredients for Elvis Presley Whipping Cream Pound Cake:
1/2 cup quality unsalted butter, room temperature

1.5 cups Hong Kong flour ( you can use cake flour), sifted
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup caster sugar
3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup quality heavy whipping cream*


  • In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together till light and fluffy.
  • Sift the cake flour and salt together and set aside for use later.
  • Preheat the oven to 180 and grease a loaf pan (9" by 5") and line with parchment.
  • Crack an egg in to the butter mixture one at a time and mix well before adding in another.
  • Add vanilla extract and mix well again. Then add 1/4 of the cake flour in and mix well. Now add in 1/3 of the whipping cream and mix. Repeat this, alternating flour and cream till all is mixed in.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan and place in the oven to bake. Bake for at least 30 minutes or till the tester comes out with moist crumbs. DO NOT over bake as it will make the cake slightly dry.
*Note: I believe the deep creamy taste that was present in the pound cake was the heavy cream I used. I used Horizon brand, which although is slightly more pricey the normal, but I feel it is worth every penny once you taste it. :)
To me, this cream taste all natural and creamy, my top choice every time. :)If you can't find Horizon, just use your favorite. :)
Eating one slice and say you have enough is a lie! The crusty outside and creamy inside...pure indulgence. Everyone needs a good butter cake and I think I found mine. :)
I even made some cupcakes and piped some cream cheese whip cream over the top. (As if there's not enough cream already!) It is so good! My girls just devoured it in minutes. ;)
I have to say, up till now, this is my favorite butter cake of all. I would recommend you bakers out there to give this a try. :) What's life if you can't indulge a little?! This is great for tea or anytime! So go bake some today. ;) Make Elvis proud! ;) Have a super weekend all!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Sesame Egg Bagels

It's almost a decade since I last made bagels. And a warm toasted bagel with a generous spread of cold cream cheese is a breakfast that me and my husband love much when we were back in California. The unique chewy texture of this bread is good to munch on plus the crunchy toasted crust is very good too! Much to your preference, you can it served with savory lox or just sweet cream cheese, it's quite versatile & delicious. But I do know that not everyone likes bagels. Normally people would prefer fluffy soft bread and not chewy dough like bagels. I remember the first time I had bagels, I didn't quite understand why people like it, lol! As time goes, I got to taste really good ones and finally acquire a fondness for it. However it is not easy to find freshly baked bagels here in Asia. So I decided to give my hubby a surprise and made a batch for it for breakfast one morning. :) I made Sesame Egg Bagels.
I was elated when these 6 lovely loops came out from the oven. All nice and golden brown, yum! This is really something you can't get from your local bakery in far as I know.
As you can see, I sprinkled 2 different kind of sesame over the bagels. Although the taste doesn't differ at all, it just makes the bread looks good. :)
Interested to know my recipe? Here it is:

Ingredients for Sesame Egg Bagels:
1 large russet potatoes, (90 to 125g), peeled and cubed
1 & 1/4 cup (312ml) water
1 packet (2.5 tsp) active dry yeast
30ml vegetable oil
2 large egg, room temperature
650g plain flour
1.5 tsp salt
egg wash
sesame seeds for sprinkling


  • Cook the potatoes in the water and bring to a boil. Cook till the potatoes are fork-tender, about 8 to 10 minutes, reserve the water. Let cool till lukewarm.
  • Measure 1 cup (250ml) of the potato water and pour it into a large mixing bowl. Add yeast, oil and eggs and whisk till well combined.
  • Add in the flour and salt, knead mixture till it becomes a soft dough. Continue to knead the dough till it is elastic and non sticky, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  • Placed the dough in oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap and let proof for at least 1hr or till the dough doubles in volume.
  • Punch out the air and turn out on a lightly floured surface. Cut the dough into 6 equal parts. Roll round and cover to rest for another 10 minutes before shaping.
  • Take a portion of the dough and using your palms, roll each piece into a rope of about 10". Using the heel of your hand, flatten 1" of one end of the robe (See Step A). Form each bagel by overlapping the flat end of the rope over 1" of the round end (See Step B).
  • Pinch together to seal. Repeat till all the bagels are formed and place them on a lightly floured surface. Cover and let proof for another 15 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 210C and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  • Fill a large pot with about 3/4 full of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to a simmer and lower 3 of the bagels in the water. Do not overcrowd them as they might loose their shapes. Simmer for 1 minutes and turn them over to simmer 1 more minute. Transfer the bagels on the prepared baking tray, spacing about 1" apart and repeat the boiling for the remaining 3 bagels.
  • Brush the bagels with egg wash and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
  • Bake in the oven till golden brown for 25 minutes. Transfer to rack to cool completely before serving.
I wish I can make this more often. But because my 2 little ones aren't fans of bagels, so I can only make it once in a blue moon. :)
I sliced open one once it was out of the oven. :) Crusty outside and soft inside...yummy!
I spread on some lox (smoke salmon) cream cheese on it and munched away, lol! Apologies for the poor quality of this photo. :P Anyway, I hope you all that like bagels will also try out this recipe. If you can't finish all the bagels, just refrigerate up to a week or freeze up to a month. Toast it up in the oven before serving...remember to get your favorite spread of course. ;) Bon appetito all!