Monday, October 31, 2011

Chocolate Cake

Last Saturday we were invited to a friend's place to celebrate their son's new achievement. At a tender age of 9, he has completed reading the Holy Quran. Of course dont compare if you are in Malaysia or any other Muslim country, I know there are even younger children who has become Tahfiz (Tahfiz means a person who memorise the Holy Quran) at an even younger age. But being abroad and not living in a Muslim environment with scarce source of ustaz/ustazah, I am very impressed and putting me to shame as none of my children has done it. Alhamdulillah, I have got a new mission to achieve this time to ensure that my kids will be able to complete the Holy Quran and Insyaallah, to have Majlis Khatam Quran for them one day. It was a simple do with him reciting to us Surah Al-Fatihah and some Ayat from the Separa and finish off with a Doa. It sure did touch my heart and it was so rejuvenating.

My other half requested that I made chocolate cake for us to bring along. Here's the recipe I got from my PIC quite a while ago.


250gm butter
1 3/4 cup caster sugar
3 eggs
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1 1/3 cup hot water
3 tbsp milk powder
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 cups plain flour
1 tsp vanilla essence

1. Combine cocoa powder and hot water, mix well and set aside.
2. Sieve together plain flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and milk powder.
3. Beat butter and sugar till light and fluffy.
4. Add eggs one at a time and beat till fully incorporated.
5. Add vanilla essence.
6. Add 1/3 flour mixture and 1/3 cocoa mixture alternately. Repeat till finish.
7. Bake in a preheated oven 160C for 50 minutes or until skewer inserted comes out clean.

Let the cake cool completely before spreading with butter cream or chocolate ganache.

Chocolate Ganache

250 ml cream
250 gm dark chocolate or milk chocolate (up to your liking)
30 gm butter
a pinch of salt
1tbsp of caster sugar (optional)

1. Heat the cream until it begins to boil. Remove from heat.
2. Add the chopped chocolate, sugar and salt. Stir.
3. Add the butter and still till become smooth.
4. Chill the chocolate mixture for a while before spreading in onto the cake.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Putu Mayam or Iddiappam or String Hoppers

Its still not too late to wish all my Indian friends Happy Deepavali. Diwali or Deepavali popularly known as the "festival of lights," is a festival celebrated between mid-October and mid-November for different reasons. For Hindus, Diwali is one of the most important festivals of the year and is celebrated in families by performing traditional activities together in their homes. In Malaysia, Deepavali is another important celebration. Growing up in a country of multi-races, I have fond memories of Deepavali too. I remember when I was small, we went to our neighbours house for Deepavali and was served Putu Mayam with Chicken Curry and was surprised coz the only way I know of eating it, is with brown sugar and freshly grated coconut. pathetic. But today, Putu Mayam and chicken curry is no longer a rare sight on our dining table.
Being away from home, not that we celebrate Deepavali but just to add some cheerful mood for the day or to make it sound grandeur in the kitchen, I made Putu Mayam and chicken curry for dinner.

Putu Mayam or most commonly known as idiyappam or string hoppers is a dish from Southern India. Being married to one, I was taught by MIL to make them. It is made of rice flour, salt and water. It is generally served as the main course at breakfast or dinner together with curry (potato, egg, fish or meat curry) and coconut chutney. It is not usually served at lunch.

Here's how to make it:-

500 gm rice flour
1tsp salt
600ml boiling water

1. Mix flour and salt in a bowl.
2. Add the boiling water and by using a wooden spatula combine all ingredients to make a soft dough.
3. Put the dough into the pressing mould and press the dough into a round shape on a bamboo rack and steam for7-10 minutes depending on the size. Repeat till finish.

Serve with your favorite curry or like me, I simply enjoy eating them with fresly grated coconut and brown sugar.

Monday, October 24, 2011

I'm back with ............Marvelous Marble Cake

Assalamualaikum and Greetings to all my fellow readers
Yes, it's been more than a year since my last entry. explanation on my part or shall I say I was hybernating. Well, since I owe family members and friends a lot of recipe and becoming forgetful of late. I better start putting my entries again for my loved ones future reference.
Otherwise, Alhamdulillah, I am all fine and healthy and so busy with my role as the Manager of Home Affairs.

Anyway, long story short, I went home last week and was so lucky to have a friend baked me her marble cake or shall I say marbleous cake. It was really the taste I was expecting when I ate them. Yes, I love to bake but usually doesnt eat them and there's only a few cake that I like. Was so happy that I got to share her marbleous cake with my family and she did bake another one for me to bring back to HK so that I could share it with my PA and my other half, unfortunately didnt have time to pick it up at her house.......sigh.......takde rezki la tu. But I told her to keep the cake in the freezer for me till I return!!

Left KL very early morning and got home around 3 in the afternoon and didnt sleep at all the nite before. Feeling so exhausted as I reached home but somehow couldnt go to sleep and feeling restless. Hb wasnt home when I arrived and thought of making something sweet for tea. Jump off from the sofa and head straight to the kitchen. Yes, it was the marble cake I made using half of the ingredients from my friend's original recipe.
Unfortunately, I didnt have few ingredients i.e. ovalette and choc. emulco but that doesnt dampen my spirit to bake. A quick call to my baking sifu friend and voilla................done!! Thanks again Ana for sharing your recipe. God bless you my fren.
The cake turned out allright and tasted good but it wasnt light and fluffy as Ana made coz I did not have the ovalette. Went to few supermarkets here yesterday and looking for ovalette but couldnt find any on the shelf. Perhaps, I have to go to the special bakery store to find them here or otherwise wait for my PIC who will be coming soon from KL and bring me some.

Trust me it is so easy to make this cake and I simply luv it!! The tip here is to use good quality butter. Here's the recipe

250gm butter (I use Lurpark unsalted butter) at room temperature
150 gm caster sugar
3 whole eggs
1 egg yolk
1 tsp essence vanilla
1 tsp ovalette (I didnt use at all)
2 tbsp condensed milk
175gm plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp chocolate emulco (optional, I didnt use either as I dont have any)

1. Sieve together flour, salt and baking powder. Set aside.
2. In a mixer, combine butter, sugar, eggs, ovalette, condensed milk and essence vanilla. Beat until well mix for 10 minutes.
3. Add in the flour mixture and mix until fully incorporated.
4. Divide batter into 2 portion. Add chocolate emulco and cocoa powder into half of the batter.
5. Grease and flour pan or line with baking paper. I use 9 x 4 inch rectangular mould.
6. Scoop the batter alternating between plain and cocoa mixture. Repeat till finish.
7. Bake in a preheated oven 150C for 1 hour 10 minutes.

On the same day, half gone and when my other half complimented saying the cake was nice.........mak ai...akak senyum sampai ke telinga you!! Selamat mencuba.