Shortbreads

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This is my last post for 2014. So I would like to finish this year with some festive recipe that can be made to give to your love ones. Most of all it involves having fun with the kids. I love to keep my kids busy and spent a lot of time with them because they are growing very fast each day. My older boy Eric just turned 5. My little Aaron is turing 2 in a few days. My niece Chloe who I love as my daughter also just turned 3. The kids love each other very much and always long to see each one another. In particular Miss Chloe really loves to cook and help out in the kitchen.

This shortbread recipe is a keeper for me. There are many recipes online for shortbreads, but I decided to pick one that I have all the ingredients. They turned out very good and yummy. The extract of the recipe is from the Thermomix Community posted by Erica Noble. Thanks Erica. I have modified the recipe slightly to suit my liking.

What can I say, the kids had so much fun cutting the dough with different shapes. If you are looking for something to do with your kids, why not give these shortbreads ago?

Wish everyone a safe and merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year!

Recipe for Shortbreads

Time: 20 mins preparation, 30 mins rest, 15 mins baking
Makes: approximately 40 shortbreads

What you need:
50g caster sugar for sprinkling (optional) – I didn’t use it because I don’t like to overload my kids with sugar
110g caster sugar (less if you do not like sweet)
200g butter at room temperature, cut into cubes
1.5 tsp vanilla essence (I used vanilla pod, gives much better vanilla flavour)
300g plain flour
Extra flour when cutting

Process
1- Line two baking trays with baking paper

2- If using mixer, beat butter, vanilla and sugar till pale and creamy on medium speed for about 15-20 seconds. If using thermomix, use speed 4 for about 15-20 seconds. Do not overbeat. The texture should look like a smooth paste rather than light and fluffy like you want it for making a cake

3- Add flour to the mixture and mix them till just combined. If using thermomix, knead for 10 to 20 seconds using the spatula through the lid whole to assist

4- Dust a clean dry surface with some extra flour. Tip the mixture onto the surface and knead lightly by hand till smooth. The dough should be very soft but shouldn’t be sticky. Knead in extra flour if necessary

5- Rub rolling pin with flour and roll out dough to about 1cm thick using rolling pin. If you do not have rolling pin, just flatten the dough with your palm. I did that even if I have a rolling pin. It is much faster.

6- Now the fun part begins: give different cookie cutter shapes to your kids and let them help cutting the dough. Dip the cutting shapes into flour first before cutting will help remove the cutters easily from the dough

7- Place shaped doughs onto lined tray with the help of thin spatula or a palette knife, spacing them out as they will expand slightly when in the oven

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8- Sprinkle with caster sugar (optional)

9- Chill them in the fridge for about 30 mins. I cheated and put them in freezer for about 5 mins

10- Preheat the oven to 160 degree celsius

11- Bake for 10 to 15 mins until just lightly golden. Depending on your oven, you may need to rotate your tray so that your shortbreads are evenly cooked

12- Remove from oven and let them cool for another 5 mins then move them to stand on wire rack to cool off completely

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13- Store in a tight container or packed in gift bags and spread the love

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Sweet Potato Rice Donut Balls

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This recipe idea started from a catch-up lunch with a few of my Cambodian friends who worked near me in the CBD. My friend Shirley bought some Thai sweet potato donuts from Chat Thai and shared them with everyone. They were very delicious and addictive. I just couldn’t stop eating them. Shirley laughed at me as she had the same crush for these donuts. I told her the texture of the donuts were very similar to the Cambodian deep fry balls called Nom Krauch, except it didn’t use sweet potato and Nom Krauch had sweet mung bean filling and was coated by sesame seeds. I challenged myself and was determined to replicate these delicious balls.

I searched for the recipes online, but didn’t seem to find anything that matched what I was looking for. My in-law has Nom Krauch recipe, but that does not use sweet potato. If I could not find anything I will use her recipe and add sweet potatoes and adjust accordingly. However after more searching, I came across a Korean blogger called Holly from Beyond Kimchee blog. Her recipe was the closest to what I was looking for. By adding my small twist to it, I got the balls that I was so addicted to eating.

Holly’s recipe is different to other donut recipes because it uses glutenous rice flour which gives that chewy texture to the balls and not the typical donut texture. Because of my root as a Cambodian, I replaced milk with coconut cream. I know hey, it already sounds exciting. According to Holly, rice flour does not absorb as much oil as wheat flour, another motivation to make these balls. The dough also freezes well, so when I feel like my sweet potato donut fix, I can quickly deep fry them.

Let see if you can recreate this at home and become another addict.

Recipe for Sweet Potato Rice Donut Balls
Made: approximately 40 balls
Time: 20 mins preparation, 15 mins cooking

What you need:
0.5 kg sweet potatoes
2 cups glutenous rice flour
1/3 cup all purpose flour (can omit for gluten free)
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 cup hot coconut cream
oil for frying
Extra sugar for coating (optional)

Process:
1- Cook sweet potatoes with skin on in any method you prefer. I just use microwave according to its instruction. It took me about 8 mins

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2- Halve the cooked potatoes and scoop the flesh out to a bowl. Mash them well

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3- In a large bowl combine all other dry ingredients. (If you have a thermomix, add all in bowl and mix on speed 3 for 5 seconds)

4- Add the mashed potatoes to the rice flour mix and start rubbing them together with your hand. Be extra careful as the potatoes may still be hot. You will soon see them forming fine crumbs. (In thermomix, speed 4 for 5 to 10 seconds then knead for 1 mins)

5- Add half of hot coconut cream first and use spoon to mix them till well combined. Add more coconut cream according to the texture of the dough. You do not want it too wet as it is hard to roll them into ball. The dough should be similar to bread dough. (In thermomix, add warm coconut cream through the lead whole bit at a time and knead for 2 to 3 mins till well combined and get to required consistency)

6- Roll dough into small size balls (smaller than golf balls)

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7- Heat oil but not overly hot. I used low to medium heat and adjust it according to your stove. If the oil is too hot it will burn the outside and the inside is still uncooked

8- Deep fry the balls as needed and freeze the left over. You need to roll the balls around in the hot oil using metal strainer until they become evenly brown and crispy outside

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9- Strain the balls and place them on a plate lined with paper towel to remove excess oil

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10- Place extra sugar in a bowl or plate and coat the balls with sugar (Optional, skip this if you do not like sugar)

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Tips: you can hide a surprise inside the balls. Maybe chocolates, or caramelised shredded coconuts, or sweet mung beans. I have tried it wrapping the dough around a piece of taro coated with sugar and it is quite yummy. Holly’s recipe used cinnamon sugar to coat the balls like the actual donuts. I prefer the taste of raw sugar.

My Signature Meatballs (Sui Mai)

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Good evening all! How are we? I am absolutely pumped after two weeks off for a family holidays to Bali and Cambodia. We also took our mothers along with us. We tried to take our parents out to places as much as we could before they get too old to walk. Our fathers were not so keen on Bali, so they missed out. We spent nine nights in Bali Indonesia, one night in Singapore and four nights in Cambodia. The Bali holiday was a relaxing one as we spent most of our time at a luxury resort. Kudos to Pan Pacific Nirwana’s management and staff, the resort was very well maintained and the staff were very friendly and welcoming. The foods were very delicious every where we ate in Bali. However, the Cambodian trip was what left me inspired and energised to love life and my families even more. I was very touched by all my uncles, aunties, cousins and friends who came and visited us and took us around to places despite their busy life and hardship over there. After living in Australia away from all the relatives and friends, I had not felt that connection and care for a long time. I felt so blessed to have them in my life.

Enough about my trip, tonight I am sharing with you a recipe for my signature meatballs. This meatball dish is a fusion of Italian and Cambodian meatballs (Sui Mai). The recipes are made up as I neither know how to cook the authentic Khmer nor Italian meatballs, but the flavour combination is explosive. My family loves it. Each time I made them, I made a lot so that I can distribute some to my in-law and my parents. They can be served with pasta, breads or rice.

There is a secret ingredient which made the meatball special. It is lemon zest. I have tried the recipe without it and I know I can’t go without my zest. And the Cambodian in me tells me to also use coriander in my meatballs and it works a treat. The Italian side of the dish should be the pasta sauce and some other herbs that I also use. So without any more delay, please try the recipe below and let me know if this should be my signature meatballs.

Recipe for my Signature Meatballs (Sui Mai)
Make: 30 meatballs (golf ball size)
Time: 20 mins preparation, 30 mins cooking

What you need:
1kg pork mince
4 onions
2 cloves garlic finely chopped
1 bunch (about 5 to 6 roots) of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
2 tbsp dried oregano
1 tbsp sugar
1 and 1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp black peppers
zest of two lemons or limes
2 jars of pasta sauce (2 x 500g)
olive oil

Process:

1- Peel onions and chop them finely

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2- Combine all ingredients and mix well

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3- Coat the frying pan with some oil. If you make a small portion, just use the cooking pot as you will need it later

4- Make balls the size of golf ball or larger and arrange them on the frying pan or pot

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5- Place the frying pan on cooktop on high to sear the meatballs all around. Note that because I made a lot of the balls, I need to do this in a few batches

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6- Transfer the seared balls into a pot, then add the pasta sauce. You can choose any flavour of the sauce you want, or just a pure tomato paste. I love roasted vegetables and garlics

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I used Dolmio because it was on sales

I used Dolmio because it was on sales

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9- Cover the pot with lid and shake the pot slightly so that the sauce mix with the balls without stirring because stirring it can break the balls. Continue cooking on medium heat for another 10 to 15 mis depending on the amount of meatball made

10- Serve with rice or pasta or baguette

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Tips: If you don’t have coriander at home, I have used other dried herbs such as rosemary, basil and thymes. They all worked well. This can also be used to make burger patty.

Stir Fry Beanette Beans with Minced Pork and Dried Shrimps (Char Sandek Barang)

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My apology that I have not posted in the last few weeks. I have been busy planning our family holiday to Bali and Cambodia. Although when I am back, I will also be busy with study as the semester would already start. I will try to post twice a month if everyone in the family are healthy as winter hasn’t been too kind since becoming a mum. Only when I started this blog that I realised how much work bloggers have spent on the contents of their blogs. I now read blogs with respect. Anyway, the holidays are all booked and tours are organised. I am very excited and look forward to seeing some friends and families in Cambodia. Only three more sleeps to go! My older son Eric has counted down daily since 6 weeks ago.

For tonight dinner I am making stir fry beanette beans with minced pork and dried srimps. I like beans whether they are snake beans, sweet peas or beanettes. I find it quite fascinating how some flavour combinations work together. Sweet peas for example go very well with seafood such as prawns or squids while beanettes go very well with minced pork. Beanettes are called Sandek Barang in Khmer (French beans). Anything with the word french attached to it is considered more valuable and therefore more expensive in Cambodia. Potato is one example. The normal potatoes we have here in Australia are called French potatoes in Khmer and they are more expensive than sweet or other types of potatoes. For this reason, we often used more snake beans in Cambodia. In Sydney, it is the opposite, beanettes are cheaper and available all year round.

My love for this dish started from one lunch at Din Tai Fung. They have this dish on the menu although they use snake beans and it was so delicious. I then tried to modify it at home using beanettes and add dried shrimps for more saltiness and textures. It was beautiful and has became our regular dish.

Recipe for Stir Fry Beanettes Beans with Minced Pork and Dried Shrimps (Char Sandek Barang)
Serve: 2
Time: 15 to 20 mins including preparation

What you need:
100g beanettes
150g minced pork
1 tbsp dried shrimps (optional). They can be found at most Chinese grocery
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 sugar
1 clove garlic finely chopped
2 tbsp olive oil

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Process:
1- Wash and cut beans into small pieces (cut into 2 or three depending on bean’s length). Wash dried shrimps with water (it may not be necessary, but I was taught to do so)

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2- Heat wok or frying pan on high and add oil and garlic. Saute garlic till golden

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3- Add minced pork and use the wooden spatula or spoon to break the mince to evenly small pieces. Add the seasoning and keep stirring till the mince become golden

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4- Add dried shrimps

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5 – Add beans and stir for another 2 mins till the beans are slightly cooked but still firm and the colour are still bright green (or if you like your beans softer, cook for a min or so longer). Turn off the heat

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6- Serve with steam rice

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Tips: adjust seasoning according to your taste. Can use soy sauce and reduce salt. I have done it before and it works fine.

Stir Fry Tofu with Pork and Bean Sprout (Char Taohou)

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This is my sister’s favourite stir fry. It is very simple yet very delicious. I remembered she usually asked mum to make it when she was back home for uni break. Now that she has her own family, she probably feeds them this every week. I cheated a little with this dish as I bought the deep fried tofu in stead of frying them myself at home. This saved me about 10 mins or so but I only did this because the tofu was freshly fried and distributed to the store. How did I know that? Well I befriended the grocery owner ( and also my butcher for the meat) and I could tell the texture of the tofu whether they are fresh or not. If you can’t find already fried tofu, fresh ones are even better, it’s just that you need to fry them first before cooking. The traditional dish also uses chive flowers. I did not have them so I left them out, but there should be plenty at the Asian grocery in Sydney especially Cabramatta.

I hope you give this a go and tell me how you like your tofu.

Recipe for Stir Fry Tofu with Pork and Bean Sprout (Char Taohou)
Serve: 2
Time: 15 mins to 30 mins including preparation time

What you need:
150g bean sprout
150g lean pork fillet sliced thinly
300g fresh firm tofu cut into small rectangles or cubes
1 clove of garlic finely chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 Cracked black pepper
Olive oil
Chive flowers

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Process:
1- Coat the hot wok or frying pan with some olive oil

2- Pan fry the tofu pieces till golden on every side (I cheated and skipped these two steps because I bought the pre-deep fried tofu). Remove tofu from the pan and set aside

3- Add about a tsp of olive oil and sauté the garlic till golden

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4- Add pork and the seasoning and keep stirring till the pork is cooked

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5- Add bean sprout and tofu and stir till combined. If they look dry add a few table spoons of water as the sprout will also be watery as they are cooked. This should only take two mins or so

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6- Turn off the heat and plate the stir fry, top with chive flowers (if you have) and cracked peppers

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Khmer Stir Fry Salmon and Ginger (Char Khgney Trey Salmon)

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It is only second day of winter and I already felt like I am coming down with something. I hope I do not pass it on to the kids. Coming home late as usual and no dinner from any of the mums, I decided to cook Khmer stir fry salmon with ginger and hope that the ginger will help me fight the cold although it may be a little too late.

This dish is our family favourite. It is one of the dish that I had proudly created as we love ginger stir fry. The Khmer traditional stir fry ginger uses pork or chicken. My freezer always has ginger and salmon. I took a piece of salmon out of the freezer before I left to work this morning just in case I might need to cook something quick as I was not sure if we were eating at Borey’s mum when we pick up Aaron after work. Borey already cooked rice which meant our dinner will be ready in about 15 mins. Hurray! My shredded gingers were still frozen in the freezer, but it can be cooked right away.

If you cannot handle too much gingers, just use a little bit of ginger for the flavour and the dish would still taste great. I encourage you to give this dish a go and tell me how you like your ginger stir fry.

Recipe for Khmer Stir Fry Salmon and Ginger (Char Khgney Trey Salmon)
Serve: 2
Time: 15 mins preparation, 15 mins cooking

What you need:
1 piece of salmon fillet – skin free (palm size piece)
1 large piece of fresh young ginger (or a cup of shredded young ginger)
1 clove of garlic finely chopped
1/4 tsp salt
3 tsp sweet thick soy sauce (se-eve khup in khmer)
1 tsp light soy sauce
olive oil

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Process:
1- Peel skin off ginger and slice into thin strip. This can be prepared early and stored for weeks in freezer

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2- Cut the salmon in to thick slices (about 2cm thick)

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3- If you use frozen ginger, put frying pan on hot plate and defrost ginger in the frying pan (high heat). Use the wooden spatula to toss it around to speed up the defrost process. When the gingers become soft and watery, add a little olive oil and keep stirring every now and then to fry the gingers till golden in colour

4- If you use fresh ginger, start with coating the hot pan with olive oil and then add ginger and fry gingers till golden in colour by stirring it every now and then

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5- Remove gingers from pan

6- Add a little olive oil to the pan and add garlic. Saute garlic for a few seconds till golden colour

7- Add salmon and quickly toss with garlic for a few seconds then add all the seasonings and stir gently to combine the fish and the soys and not braking the fish. Turn the heat off after 2 to 3 mins so the fish is not overcooked

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8- Add the ginger and toss slightly to combine

9- Transfer to a plate and serve with steam rice.

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Tips: You can use other white fish fillets

Tomato Cheese and Bacon Omelette

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Hello Sunday, and welcome Winter! Today recipe is from my hubby, Borey. It has been a busy weekend with the kids. We spent the entire Saturday out to the Sydney aquarium and the Sydney Wild Life Park. Despite the bad weather forecast, we took the chance. There was nothing to lose, at least we got to eat some nice Japanese ramen if it was to rain, but the weather was just perfect. I was wearing singlet the whole time. Running after the kids was also a contributing factor. I was so exhausted and looked forward to today so I could have some rest.

Borey made us his famous tomato, cheese and bacon omelette for breakfast. It is so good that you have to give it a go. I normally never paid attention when he was making it, but this time I wanted to learn so that I could compile this and share with you guys. So all the gentlemen out there, please make this for your lovely partner although the ladies can also surprise their love ones too. I am sure they will be appreciative!

Recipe for Tomato Cheese and Bacon Omelette
Make: 2 large Omelettes
Time: 5 mins preparation, 10 mins cooking

What you need:
1 large tomato
2 slices of short cut bacon
2 slices of nice cheese or a cup of shredded cheese
4 eggs
3 tbsp milk
salt
black pepper
olive oil

Optional salad
baby spinach
baby rocket
truffle oil

Process:
1- Dice tomato and bacon into small pieces

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2- Break cheese in to small pieces in case you use sliced cheese

3- Crack eggs into a large bowl and add milk, 2 cracks of salt (1/4 tsp) and 2 cracks of peppers

4- Whisk egg mixture with fork till well combined

5- Heat up the frying non-stick pan or a skillet on medium heat (We use heat 6 from 1 to 9 cook top)

6- When the pan is hot, add some olive oil to coat the pan then pour half of the egg mixture into the pan like making a pancake

7- Allow the egg mixture to set for a min or so

8- Fill half of the omelette with half of the fillings: tomato, bacon and cheese

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9- Cook them till all the egg mixture is firming up but still slightly runny

10- flip the other half of the circle to cover the cheese and continue cooking for another 1 min

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11- Slide the omelette onto a clean plate and garnish with salad or truffle oil. It can be served with bread, but it is big enough for me.

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12- Repeat the step for another omelette

Enjoy your breakfast!

Tips: you can replace bacon with ham or smoked salmon

Pickled Carrot, Cucumber, White Radish and Ginger (Chruork Carrot, Tror Sak, Thaitao, Khgney)

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I like to go through my fridge each week and check what is left and what need to be purchased. I am a fridge manager, a role inspired by my ex-collegue James Claridge who is an amazing guy who knows just about everything and is very passionate about saving our planet. By doing this, I make sure the fridge is clean and most importantly things are used by date and waste is minimised. This week I have a couple of carrots, some cucumbers, gingers and a piece of white radish left in the fridge so I am making Cambodian pickles.

This pickle is a side dish which goes very well with BBQ or grilled meat, grilled fish, fish cakes or grilled beef kebabs or can be used as a starter with a cold meat plater. It is very easy to make and again like many Cambodian dishes, there are many ways to pickles vegetables. It is also very versatile as you can choose or leave out vegetables as you prefer. White radish may not be everyone’s cup of tea as it has very strong smell and taste. Therefore if you don’t like it, leave them out.

The pickle will last up to three weeks in a sterilised jar, not in my case as I would empty the jar in a week. It is good to have them sitting in the fridge for days that I don’t have time to do much cooking. It would make a very nice gift also.

I hope that the recipe is easy to follow and happy pickling!

Recipe for Cambodian pickled carrots, cucumbers, white radish and ginger
Made: 2 small jars (recycled pasta sauce jars)
Time: 15 mins preparation, 5 to 10 mins process

What you need:
3 cucumbers
3 carrots
1 small white radish
1 small piece (thumb size) ginger
1 tbsp salt for washing the vegetables
1/2 tbsp salt
2 1/2 tbsp sugar
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1 clove of garlic (optional, I do not like raw garlic so I did not use it)
2 to 3 chillies (optional, I love mine hot)

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Process
1- Peel carrots, ginger and white radish
2- Wash all the vegetables
3- Cut cucumbers into small wedges

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4- Slice carrots and radish into thin slices (approximately 2mm thick). If you want to make flowers, carve the vegetables vertically as in picture below before slicing, but this is purely for presentation

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5- Combine all the chopped and sliced vegetables in a large bowl and add the one table spoon of salt. Squeeze the vegetables together with the salt to soften the carrots and the radish and to get some juice out from the cucumbers. This process is called salt wash. It is done to remove the bitterness from the radish and to remove some juice from the cucumbers. This step can be skipped if you don’t mind the raw taste of the radish. This step is also recommended if you want to eat the pickles right away

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6- Wash the salted vegetables lightly and squeeze all the water out and drain well

After the salt wash process, the vegetables looks softer, but still are crunchy

After the salt wash process, the vegetables look softer, but are still crunchy

7- Add the rest of the ingredients to the vegetables and mix well

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8- Transfer into sterilised jars and leave them in the fridge. This can be served straight away although the flavour will intensify when all the veggies soak up the sweet and sour flavours

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Send some love and give some to your loved ones

Cambodian Banana Pudding with Toasted Mung Beans (Chek Khtis)

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Last weekend my mother in law gave me a tier of Cambodian banana, called Namvar. She has a lot of banana trees at her backyard which give plenty of fruits through out the year. There are many types of bananas in Cambodia. I am most familiar with two types: green long one called Chek Ombong (similar to the common yellow ones found in Australia, but not as starchy and much sweeter) and the sweet short fat ones called Chek Namvar.

Chek Namva

Chek Namva

Namvar is very popuar one and is used in many Cambodian desserts. I love to eat them as fresh fruits like the Australian bananas, but because we have so much of them and they are getting very ripe and sweet, I thought I made banana pudding with coconut cream, tapioca pearls or sago and toasted mung beans. There are multiple versions of this dessert, some do not use mung beans but my mum always used the beans and I love the toasty nutty flavour they give to the dessert. I have not tried using the Australian banana, but I do not see why it cannot be used. The cooking time depends on how ripe the banana is, but it should be a very quick dessert. My kids love this dessert (they are my biggest fans especially Aaron). It can be served as it is or on top sticky rice.

I hope you enjoy making and eating the dessert and drop me a line to see how you go.

Recipe for Cambodian Banana Pudding with Toasted Mung Beans (Chek Khtis)
Serve: 4 to 6
Time: 5 mins preparation, 15 mins cooking

What you need:
100g or 1/3 cup mung beans (these beans have been halved with skin removed. You can leave this out, if you do not have them, but highly recommend from me)
1/4 cup tapioca pearls or sago
400g or 6 small ripe bananas
200ml coconut cream
2 1/2 cup water
1/4 tsp salt
5 tbsp sugar ( or 6 if you like your dessert very sweet)

Optional topping
200ml coconut cream
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar

key ingredients

key ingredients

Process
1- Boil the water in a cooking pot

2- Heat up the frying pan on medium heat

3- Start peeling the skin off the bananas

4- Toast the beans in the hot frying pan and keep stirring till golden and you can smell the toasty fragrance (not burn). This should take about 2 to 3 mins

toast mung beans

toast mung beans

after a few mins, when they  become golden

after a few mins, when they become golden

5- Pour the toasted beans into the cooking pot with the water and cook for about 5 mins on medium heat till the beans are almost tender. Please do not walk away because if the heat is too high, the boiling water may spill from the pot. (Note if you do not use mung beans you can skip step 4 and 5)

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6- While the beans are cooking cut the banana diagonally into small pieces as below

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7- When the beans are almost tender (after step 5) Add sugar and salt and stir well

8- Add bananas and cook for another 3 mins or so depending on how ripe the banana is. You want the banana to cook through

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9- Add 200ml of coconut cream and stir well and then add the tapioca and stir again

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10- When the mixture just came to the boil, turn the heat off. The tapioca will continue to cook till they become clear. This should take a few mins

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The dessert is ready to be served as it is, but I like to add salty coconut milk on top of my dessert. If you want to try, follow the next step

11- add the extra 200ml coconut cream to a clean cooking pot and cook it in medium heat. Add 1/4 tsp of salt and 1tbsp of sugar and stir till it has little bubble and then turn the heat off

12- To serve, spoon the banana pudding into a small dessert bowl and top it with the salty coconut cream…. I am going to eat mine now. Bon appetite!

Tip: if you serve this on top of sticky rice, add more sugar to the pudding. Double the trouble I know.

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The best ever scones

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My second post, yey! I cannot believe I am doing this, but I am loving it. Today is Sunday. The good news is that it is still weekend, the bad news is tomorrow is Monday. Our normal Sunday routine is taking the boys to swimming lesson in the morning and then lunch and then nap time. After nap, we do something together, either cooking, craft or outing to the park or go for a train ride. This Sunday is different. I hosted a get together with some of my high school girlfriends of more than 14 years. Since I became a mum, I do not get to go to most catch-up events the girls organised. So I decided to invite them to my place and had some afternoon tea. I was very excited about today as I haven’t seen and had any long chat with them for ages. The girls offered to bring in some snacks and I would provide tea and some sweets.

I have decided to bake some scones as they sound easy and do not take so much effort. Yep this is my first time baking scones. I love eating them but I just never had a chance to make them myself. So this is it. I googled for scones recipes using Thermomix as I have the luxury to own one. I found this recipe from the Thermomix community called “The best ever scones” and has a lot of good reviews and the recipe is very simple. Less than one minute in the machine, I got the dough ready to shape into scones. My four year old Eric was helping me cutting the scones and place them on the baking tray. While the scones were cooking in the oven, I started laying out the plates and tea pots and cups for the high tea. I got some daffodils from the nursery yesterday and it made a perfect centrepiece.

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The scones came out so perfect, light and golden and delicious. They were the best scones I have ever eaten. Being fresh from the oven made them even tastier. They were served with jam and fresh thick cream, yes I was lazy and did not have time to whip it. I also baked some short breads the weekend before so I reheat them in the warm oven. I also made some Japanese steam cakes earlier this morning. The tea I used was jasmine green tea from T2. The girls and my boys and I really enjoyed the scones and everything else. It was such a good catch up.

Below is the extract of the recipe for the scones from the Thermomix Community, although it could be easily made without thermomix. Happy scones making and let me know how you go.

Recipe for best ever scones
Made: 12 scones
Time: 15 mins preparation, 10-15 mins baking time

What you need:
400g self raising flour
20g butter at room temperature
30g sugar
125ml milk
125ml cream
1 egg
extra flour for dusting
extra milk for glazing

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Process
1- Preheat oven to 220 degree Celsius

2- Line baking tray with baking paper

3- Place flour and butter in the thermomix bowl and mix for 8 to 10 seconds on speed 9 until bread crumb consistency. For non-thermomix, place flour and butter in the food processor and turn on high speed for 8 to 10 seconds until bread crumb consistency

4- Place the rest of the ingredients in the mix and mix for 5 to 10 seconds on speed 4 till the mixture is combined. For non-thermomix, turn on medium speed for 5 to 10 seconds

5 – lightly knead the mixture till all well combined. For thermomix, knead for 30 seconds on interval speed

6 – Pour dough mixture onto well floured surface and lightly pat dough into 3cm thickness. NOTE: dough will be very light and sticky – this is ok

7 – Cut into rounds with scone cutters (or any round shapes. I do not have scones cutter so I used my baby formula bottle lid)

8 – Place scones together (touching each other) on to lined oven tray

9 – Glaze with a little milk and bake in a very hot oven at 220 degrees celsious for 10 to 15 mins. For my oven, it took 10 mins and I had to rotate my tray half time

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10 – Cool in a clean tea towel on a wire rack

10 mins after….

10 mins after….

Happy afternoon tea!

Afternoon high tea

Afternoon high tea