Friday, October 21, 2011

Banana Cake II

The school holidays in conjuction with a specific festival is long awaited by school citizens of all races and this time the holidays, which starts today, will be nine days long.  And as always, as a way to release all the stress of school, I have decided to bake!  I searched my pantry and I noticed I had all the ingredients I needed to bake a cake plus there were some over-ripe bananas.  So, the best thing to bake is a banana cake.  I know there's banana cakes and there's banana cakes, but I decided to give this recipe a try!

100g butter (I used salted butter since that's all I had in the fridge!)
100g brown castor sugar (ditto!)
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence
100g sour milk (full-cream milk plus juice from half a lemon)
100g mashed bananas (about two 'rastali' bananas)
200g self-raising flour

Beat butter and sugar until creamy and pale.  Add in the eggs, vanilla essence, sour milk and mashed bananas and mix well.  Then, using a spatula, fold in the flour until just mixed.  Pour into a greased and lined loaf pan and bake in a 180C oven for 40 minutes. 

P.S. This is a very moist and very brittle banana cake.  Love this one!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Giving Homok Talay a Try!

Some days you just don't feel like eating and everything just don't seem to tickle your tastebuds.  For me, today is one such day which got me thinking that I should try something new; in fact something that I had wanted to try making for a long time.  It's the Thai version of our local 'Otak-otak'.  Of course I tweaked the original recipe here and there (my apologies to the Thais) since my family do not like the smell of coriander leaves (but I just adore them! Sigh!)  But, anyway here's the reciple, minus the coriander leaves and kaffir lime leaves.

250g spanish mackerel fillets, cut into small portions
1 cup thick coconut cream
2 tbs sliced spring onions
1 tsp rice flour
1 medium egg
1 tbs fish sauce
50 g red curry paste *

Mix all the ingredients together, place in a heatproof container (I used ramekins) and steam for 10 minutes. 

The original recipe calls for 2 tbs each of sliced kaffir lime leaves and coriander leaves.  Meanwhile, the red curry paste is made by pounding the following ingredients together to a paste.
5 dried chillies, pounded
1 tsp galangal, pounded
1 tbs lemongrass, pounded
1/2 tsp kaffir lime zest
1 tbs coriander root, chopped finely
3 tbs shallots, sliced
A pinch of prawn paste
1/4 tsp pepper corn
1 tsp salt

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Brownies for Brownie Points!

It's been a while, yes, but I've been busy.  Like, today I finished invigilating the PMR examination and setting my own tradition as chief invigilator, I decided to treat my fellow invigilators to a home baked something.  It took me a while to think of what to bake when eventually I decided on brownies.  After all what better treat as brownie points for a hardworking lot of invigilators.

I'm glad the brownies went down well with the group.  Fortunate (or unfortunately, depending how you look at it!) these guys are the last lot to sample my baked treats, at least where invigilating exams are concerned; since I have from this year onwards decided not to invigilate anymore (or so I think!)  Anyway,  hope my fellow invigilators (the ladies at least!) will find this recipe easy to undertake and the result similar to mine, if not better.  Happy baking!

125g butter
100g dark chocolate
2 large eggs
200g sugar (I used brown sugar)
150g all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
100g hazelnuts

Melt the butter and chocolate in a double boiler.  Remove from heat and beat in the eggs.  Add this mixture to the sugar, flour, baking powder and hazelnuts and beat until well-mixed.  Spoon into a lined and greased 9-inch tin and bake for 40 minutes in a 170 C oven.  Be sure to completely cool the brownies before cutting into squares.

P.S.  I prefer my nuts roasted prior to being used in a cake.  So I dry roasted them in a pan, removed the skin and bashed them a bit before chopping them!