Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Taiwanese Style Milky Baked Mooncake 2015

Two years ago, I made these Taiwanese Style Milky Baked Mooncake following 鲸鱼蓝蓝小窝居's recipe. What I like about this recipe is that it is crunchy (like a cookie), and Lye water is not required. It is also pretty straightforward to make. You don't even need a mixer, just use a whisk to mix the ingredients until fluffy. This time, I used Korean Rice Syrup (bought from Korean store) instead of Golden Syrup. I did not use egg wash this time.

Remember the lotus seeds paste I made? After feedback from my family, I added more oil and rice syrup and re-fry the paste. I finally achieve the consistency I want! The paste is smoother and the color turns darker after re-frying. The paste also looked more moist. I think the key is not to over-fry it too, once it pulls away from the frying pan, add maltose (as many recipes suggested, or in my case, I substituted with rice syrup), and fry a bit more. So, it's taste over health :p I added perhaps 2 to 3 tbsp of oil, and about 1 tbsp of rice syrup. You can find this rice syrup in Korean mart, it's called Ssalyeot 쌀엿. I am not sure if it's the same as maltose or 麦芽糖 (in Chinese), but from the English translation, they seem to be the same. 

My mom calls this 月饼干 as it is like a cookie :D

Finally, lotus seeds paste which is smooth and moist, and best of all, homemade.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Snowskin Mooncake with Lotus Seeds Paste

Challenging homemade lotus seeds paste after 2 years. My last attempt failed miserably - the paste was not smooth at all. The blending really needs to be done longer, which was what I did this time round. The end result is: the paste is certainly not as smooth as store-bought ones, it still looks a bit dry, but tastes ok. I wonder if it's because I fried it longer than it is required? Not sure how I can make it smoother - perhaps add more oil? Or should I add maltose? Until I gather enough courage and energy to do this again, these questions remain unanswered :p If you have the answers, please do let me know :)

Big Thank You to Table for 2, Christine, and Siukitchen for sharing their recipes:
 Table for 2..... or more's Homemade Caramel Lotus Paste recipe
 Christine's recipes' Lotus Seed Puree recipe
 Siukitchen's video how on to fry lotus seeds paste

The ingredients I used:
 - 200g dried lotus seeds (without skin)
 - 100g demerera sugar
 - 100g grapeseed oil (you may need more oil as my paste was not very smooth)

After soaking the lotus seeds overnight, boil
them for an hour with water barely covering the seeds.

Puree the lotus seeds in chopper until smooth.

Lotus seeds puree ready to be fried.

After frying with oil and sugar for about 20 mins.

Updated on 6 September 2015:

Ingredients for the snowskin:
- 38g kou fen
- 40g icing sugar
- 4g grapeseed oil
- 60ml water

For matcha flavor, add:
- 1/2tsp matcha powder (matcha taste is quite light, you may want to add more)

1. Put kou fen and icing sugar in a mixing bowl. Mix together with a spatula.
2. In a separate mixing bowl or measuring cup, add water and oil.
3. Add liquid ingredients to dry, quickly mix together in ONE direction. You need to work quickly to ensure a smooth snowskin. Else, it will become a lumpy mess :p

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Teacher's Day Cupcakes

Cupcakes decorated by little hands, straight from her heart :)

For her cousins, frosted with just buttercream, m&m's
and modeling chocolate.

Happy Teachers' Day! The kids in schools are celebrating Teachers' Day today. My little one wanted to bake some frosted cupcakes for her teachers in school. Her requirement is fondant covered cupcakes - so as her "assistant" for this event, I made a trip to Phoon Huat to get a small tub of Satin Ice Rolled Fondant. Unfortunately, the white color fondant was not available, so I got the baby blue one instead.

For the buttercream, it was kinda last minute when I decided to make some. In my last attempt to make fondant cupcakes, I did not need any buttercream as the fondant was able to "sit" on the cupcake, perhaps due to the paper cups I used. In any case, "chef" of the day requested buttercream, so I found this small batch buttercream recipe. Many thanks to Celebrating Sweets' recipe, it is very useful as I know we just needed a bit of buttercream to keep the fondant in place. I recalled throwing away buttercream made using another recipe, and really do not want to waste food like that again. Also, this buttercream recipe only uses icing sugar, butter, vanilla essence and a tsp of fresh milk. It was just nice for frosting 11 cupcakes thinly.

It was a breeze to bake the chocolate cupcakes, and I am sure I will use this recipe from FoodieBaker again and again, especially helpful for baking large quantities of decorated cupcakes. Honestly, I was skeptical about the taste of this cupcake initially as the recipe uses oil, but the result was a definite "yummy!". It is soft and goes well with the buttercream and fondant.

While the cupcakes were being baked, "chef" started her fondant decoration. While decorating, she looked serious at times, and goofy other times, especially when she popped m&m's into her mouth while decorating! :p She told me that was the "best part of making cupcakes" :D

The part I dreaded most was the cleaning up :p But seeing how much fun "chef" had, I guess it is worth it?

Do you remember what you brought to schools on Teachers' Day? I just happened to recall that my mom used to bake kueh bolu for us to bring to school on Teachers' Day. I still remember that my mom would bake these using a charcoal stove at our backyard (when we were still living in the Kampung) in the hot and humid Singapore weather. They smelled and tasted delicious and no matter how my classmates teased me about them, they were the yummiest cake to me. It is truly the love and sweat of a mother..

Happy Teachers' Day to all teachers! Whether you are school teachers, tuition teachers, piano teachers, gym teachers, mothers, etc... to me, as long as you are sincerely sharing your knowledge, you are a teacher :) Thank you for sharing your knowledge, which has benefited and appreciated by many people, and have a wonderful Teachers' Day! :)

The front most cupcake is the only one I got to
decorate, permission granted from "chef".

A gigantic cupcake among the rest, as I ran out of silicone cups.
Bad idea, as it needed more time to cook as compared to the smaller cupcakes.
So please use cups of same size for even baking and less trouble :p