Category Archives: Desserts

Sweet Creamy Avocado and St. Patrick’s Day

Did you know that the Chicago River is dyed green to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day?

Celebrations are generally themed around the color green. Although Avocado is not related to Irish, but it is green.

If you like Avocado and you like dessert, this recipe is for you. It is super simple. My only complain is washing the food processor afterwards.

Recipe adapted from The cooking of Malaysia and Singapore by Ghillie Basan.

Serves two
1 avocado, (pitted)
juice of half a lime
30 ml /2 tbsp sweetened condensed milk
30 ml /2 tbsp coconut milk
a pinch of salt

Put the avocado flesh into food processor and puree it with lime juice. Add the condensed milk, coconut milk and salt and process until the mixture is smooth and creamy.

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Tuxedo Strawberry

Didn’t think I could do it but I did it! I made these gorgeous Tuxedo Strawberry. The strawberry in the center is representation of a lady wearing a white V-line dress with white pearl necklace.

(I was inspired by this creation.)

My experiment started with a basket full of fresh strawberry. The crunch from fresh strawberry with the sweetness from the chocolate makes this a great dessert.

TIP: Use fresh strawberry.

I recommend that you dry these berries before applying the chocolate. Any moisture from the berries will cause the chocolate to dry out, thus making the chocolate harder to coat the berries smoothly.

TIP: Gently wipe strawberries with paper towel before dipping into chocolate.

Sometimes, a little moisture does go into the chocolate mixture, no worries, add a little oil into the chocolate mixture, stir well and your chocolate is good to go again. I have tried olive oil and grapeseed oil and both of these varieties work for me.

TIP: Stir in a little oil if the chocolate mixture is too thick but not too much or the chocolate coating will look diluted.

TIP: Let white chocolate (tuxedo vest) hardened first before dipping into the dark chocolate (tuxedo outer suit). Before piping the final bow tie and the buttons, make sure the layers of chocolate are dry.

After a few failures, I was able to reproduce what I saw on some gourmet chocolate shops.
Here’s the recipe from Simply Recipes.  Have you tried making chocolate covered strawberries, yet?

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Viennese Whirls

These butter cookies are highly addictive and one piece is never enough. Little Tiger (left) and Little Dragon (right) can finish two trays of cookies by themselves. This is a fun project for kids. If they messed up, you can scoop the batter up and re-pipe. Do cut up extra cherries because a few cherries may not make it to the cookie. Cherry is Little Dragon’s favorite.

Recipe is from Cafe of the East.

 

We used a standard piping bag with star tip to pipe out the cookies. We found it a little hard to push out the cookie dough. After reading baking 911 tips, I am thinking about using a cookie press.

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Fruit Tart with Mascarpone Cheese filling

Little Tiger (9 years old) and Little Dragon (6 years old) have over two months of summer vacation. This week, they are attending the church sponsored Summer Camp, Tuesday through Friday, from 9 in the morning to noon. This afternoon, after camp, I decided to let them “play” in the kitchen.

Fruit Tart with Mascarpone Cheese filling is a fun project for kids to make with adult supervision, of course. Little Tiger piped the filling onto the pre-made tart shell. Little Dragon arranged the blackberry onto the tart.

The filling for this fruit tart is very simple. Using hand mixer, beat half a cup of mascarpone cheese. Add half a cup of heavy whipping cream and sugar (I reduced the amount of sugar to 2 tsp) and beat until soft peaks form.

I used Picasa (free software by Google) to create the above photo pile. These tips will come in handy when you are using Picasa photo pile option.

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Panna Cotta, I Fear No More

In Italian language, Panna Cotta means cooked cream. Here’s the definition of Panna Cotta dessert in wikipedia. It is a popular Italian dessert that serves well in the summer. Well, if you are living in Malaysia, you could make this dessert all year round. This dessert is very simple to make and as long as you follow the exact measurement and steps, it is a guaranteed success.

I had some fresh whipping cream left-over from my recent attempt of Black Forest Cake. I know whipping cream has a short life span in the refrigerator. So, when I read V‘s article on Panna Cotta that uses whipping cream, without hesitation, I put on my apron. My confidence level wasn’t too high because of my previous failure with gelatin and whipping cream recipes before but I persisted. I really wanted to give V’s recipe a try. Carefully following each steps, and after 3 hours of refrigeration time, a “divine” creamy dessert appeared. It was totally out of my expectations. The dessert came out creamy with a hint of almond and totally satisfying.

In the near future, I will definitely attempt to make more desserts with these two major ingredients, gelatin and whipping cream. Perhaps I would even invest in vanilla pods. The tiny specks of vanilla bean from the pod would definitely enhance the look as well as the taste.

Lee Ping’s notes:

V’s recipe calls for 1 1/4 tsp of unflavored gelatin. I had forgotten to measure, but I used the whole pack of gelatin.

I also used fat-free milk to reduce the fat content of this dessert. My husband took a bite and he was suspicious. How could anything taste this good with fat-free milk and no eggs was involved? I did not tell him the creaminess came from the whipping cream. After 14 years of marriage, he knew I was hiding something from the look of my eyes, so he refrained from finishing his dessert. Good for him. I want him to live longer than me anyway.

I did not have vanilla pods, so I substituted it with 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract.
Allow the gelatin be absorbed by the milk for a few minutes. Heat the cream and milk with sugar, vanilla and almond extract. Stir and mix well. Pour the mixture into several molds and chill to set. Serve with fresh fruits. I used the fruit (blackberry) only as a topping instead of part of the dessert. You could remove the dessert from the mold and present it in a platter as well.

So, hope on over to V’s blog for the recipe. And when you are there, please leave her a thank-you note.

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“Go Nuts” with Donuts

A donut is best eaten fresh. However, for safety purposes, make sure your eager guests or family members is at least 2 feet away when you are deep frying these donuts.

I was inspired to make donuts again after reading articles written by Teckiee and WMW on Malaysia’s first Big Apple Donut Shop. Lily has a great recipe for donut. I love her recipe because it is easy to make, especially if you have a bread machine.

As I was writing this article, I kept looking at the donuts photos posted by WMW. There were an assortment of colorful donuts with different toppings like Belgian Chocolate, Green Tea, White Chocolate with Peanut Butter filling, Almond flakes, and Oreo Cookie Crumbs. If I were to replicate any one of these, I must be able to let the donuts cool down before I glaze it with the toppings. Make this before anyone wakes up…. Since this is a yeast dough, I need at least 2 hours of preparation time. I need to wake up at 5am. That was my plan yesterday. As you can see from the photo, it did not work out. Little Chicken wanted to help out in the kitchen.

I found the following recipe to glaze donuts by Alton Brown (A.B.). I am his fan. My husband even gave me a cookbook written by him on Valentine’s Day.

Donut Glaze (Recipe courtesy Alton Brown, 2004)
1/4 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups confectioners’ sugar

Combine milk and vanilla in a medium saucepan and heat over low heat until warm. (I used a homemade double broiler (as shown in the photo in the photo grid). Sift confectioners’ sugar into milk mixture. Whisk slowly, until well combined. Remove the glaze from the heat and set over a bowl of warm water. Dip doughnuts into the glaze, 1 at a time, and set on a draining rack placed in a half sheet pan for 5 minutes before serving.

So, dear friends, the following is my version of glazed donuts topped with fresh toasted almond flakes. As for the other donut varieties, I will let other talented Blogger Mommies like Ching, WokkingMum and V or other Foodies like Mandy and Tigerfish to take on the challenge.

 

The following are photos taken this morning and this afternoon. Day 2 of remodeling. As you can see from a few of the photos, dust is prevalent.

 

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Day 1 (Home Remodeling)

Praise God. The weather was sunny even though the forecast was not. Thanks for praying for us.

This is a challenging project because it is 3 stories high.

 



Simple dishes that I managed to make this afternoon. One of my friends, after seeing my blog asked me if I cook fancy dishes every day. The answer is No. Some days, we go out for dinner. Other days, my husband barbecues. And for days like today, when we cannot leave the house because we are doing a remodeling, I heat up my well seasoned wok and cook this simple one pot dish that has protein and fiber.

I even had some spare time to make a dessert and an appetizer. The dessert was inspired by WMW’s article.

I used the same short-cut pastry for the skin of both the Egg Tart and Siew Paos.

Here’s the recipe for the Egg Tart filling. Beat 2 eggs, 1/3 cup sugar, 1 cup milk and strain this beaten mixture into each tart. Bake in 370 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes in the middle rack.

Click here for Siew Pao recipe.

 

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