Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas Molasses Ginger Cookies

It is the best time of the year to bake ginger cookies. Living in Malaysia, we can get fresh ginger thoughout the year and preserved ginger is easily available as well. I used preserved ginger for the cookies instead of grounded. I love to bite on the ginger pieces when chewing the cookies.
As we are going to have kids around for the Christmas gathering, I make it less ginger... These ginger cookies will disappear quickly, so I make a large batch!

  • 115g Butter

  • 125g Brown Sugar (extra brown sugar to sprinkle on top of dough before baking - optional)

  • 4 Tbsp Blackstrap Molasses / Treacle

  • 1tsp Fresh Lemon Juice

  • 275g Plain Flour

  • 1tsp Baking Soda

  • 50g Preserved Ginger (coarsely chopped)

  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves

  • some dusting sugar (decoration)


  1. Preheat oven to 160 degree C. Lined baking tray with parchment/baking sheets.

  2. Sift flour, baking soda and spices together.

  3. Cream butter and sugar. Stir in egg, molasses and lemon juice. Add in flour mixture and mix well.

  4. Spooned the dough (desired size) on the prepared baking tin. Place about 5cm apart. Sprinkle some brown sugar on top (optional).

  5. Bake until cookies are just firm to the touch, abvout 12 minutes. Leave to cool on wire rack.

Point to highlight:

Do not chopped preserved ginger too fine, I love biting on ginger pieces.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Fried Shallot & Oyster Sauce

Coming home with simple food ready on dinner table after a hectic work day is soo wonderful. I always prepared some "magic sauce" and stored in the fridge as an ingredient for quick dishes preparation.

Fried Shallot & Oyster Sauce goes well with simple Teochew porridge and as a topping for steamed fish or tofu.

  • 300g Shallot (thinly sliced)

  • 1 cup Oil

  • 3 Tbsp Oyster Sauce

  • 3 Tbsp Light Soya Sauce

  • 1/2tsp salt (optional)


  1. Heat up oil, saute sliced shallot untill fragranced (but not brown).

  2. Add Oyster sauce, light soya souce and salt and fried untill well mixed. Store well in the fridge.

Point to highlight:

  • I don't add sugar and pepper to the sauce, as oyster sauce has everything that enhance the taste.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Minced Pork with Spicy Tauchu (豆酱) and Onion

Every family has their own home recipe. In our family, we love my mum's home reripe, especially her "Minced Pork with Spicy Tauchu (a paste made from
preserved soyabeans) and Onion". When she cooked, We would normally have a bigger portion of rice to go with it.
This dish is very appertizing. It is fragranced by tauchu, spiced up by chilli paste and with tamarind juice to make it more flavorful.
As a typical Nyonya, my mum love to spice up most of her cooking conveniently. Just like this one, for a normal mince pork with tauchu, she added in chilli paste, tamarind juice and plenty of onion...


  • 1 stalk Lemongrass (large)

  • 6 nos Dried Chilli (seed removed)

  • 8 nos Shallot

  • 2 Tbsp Tauchu (pounded)

  • 300g Minced Pork

  • 1 no Onion (large) - sliced

  • 1 no Tomato (large) - thick sliced

  • 50g Tamarind Pulp / Juice

  • Sugar (to taste)

  • Salt (if required)


  1. Pounced / blended lemongrass, dried chilli, and shallot together.

  2. Saute lemongrass, dried chilli, shallot untill fragranced.

  3. Add pounded tauchu. Fried until well mixed.

  4. Pour in minced pork, mixed evently with other ingredients.

  5. Add sliced onion and tomato. Cooked until onion and tomato are soft.

  6. Lastly, add seasoning, sugar and salt (if required) and tamarind

Point to highlight:

  • Must taste before salt is added, as tauchu is saltly.

  • Recommend amount of tamarind juice up to own taste.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Chives / Spring Onion Pancake 葱油饼

Its very rewarding to cook with the ingredient that grow in our own garden. My little chives pot progress very well. I took half of it to make pancake which I learnt from Taiwanese friends during my college years. I make extra and store some in the freezer. Like any frozen dough, just remove from the freezer and pan fried in medium heat, just a few minutes, a quick ready homemade breakfast or afternoon tea would be ready! Ingredient:

  • 2 cups Plain Flour

  • 1 cup Water

  • 1/2 tsp Salt

  • Salt (to sprinkle on pancake together with chives)

  • 5 stalks Chives

  • 5 Tbsp Oil (to brush/rub on pancake)

  • Oil (frying)


  1. Mixed flour, water, and salt together, knead to form a smooth dough. Cover with wet cloth and rest for ~30 minutes.

  2. Clean and cut chives.

  3. Devide dough into desire size, depends on the size of frying pan. Roll and flatten the dough, brush/rub a layer of oil and sprinkle some salt and a layer of finely cut chives evenly on the entire dough surface. Roll the dough to long strip and roll the strip from right to left to form a spiral. Flatten the entire spiral and roll into flat pancake.

  4. Heat up frying pan with 1 Tbsp of oil and fry the pancake until both side turn golden brown. Serve hot.

Points to highlight:

  • For frozen pancake, separate each piece with plastic paper, use a cake board as the base, wrap all pancakes well and store in freezer.

  • Dry the "cut chives" and cut as fine as possible。

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Pau '包' - Lotus Paste with Spicy Dried Shrimp (Sambal Udang Kering)

Decided to make pau '包' with combination of sweet and spicy filling for Sunday breakfast using few ingredients available in the fridge, such as for pau (beet root, molasses sugar) and filling (lotus paste, sambal udang kering).

Using mixture of lotus paste and sambal udang kering, with fried shallot is something exotic and wild. My parents and husband like it! But not for my daughter...

Ingredient (pau):

  • 300g Pau / Hong Kong flour

  • 5g Instant Yeast

  • 5g Baking Powder

  • 35g Molasses Sugar / Castor Sugar

  • 25g Olive Oil

  • 170ml Beet Root Juice (Filling Lotus Paste Sambal Udang Kering
    (cooked till dried, discard oil)

  • Fried Shallot


  1. Combine all "filling" ingredients. Weight (~18g each) and shaped into round.

  2. Mix all pau ingredients and knead till a smooth dough. Portioned the dough into ~25g each.

  3. Rounded each dough and flatten with fingers. Roll with rolling pin, thick at the middle and thin at the side.

  4. Wrap in filling and make into round pau shape with opening facing down.

  5. Rest for ~30minutes.

  6. Steam over high heat for 10 minutes.

Point to consider:

  • The proportion of filling ingredients is up to our own taste.

  • Spicy Dried Shrimp: The same recipe as posted ealier, but pounded dried shrimp coarsely.

  • I sometimes use muffin paper cup to hold pau, just to add some color/fun to the presentation.

An ideal outdoor or traveling food, good for pot-luck as well!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Hello Kitty Cookies

To cheer up my daughter who is resting at home, suffering for bad cough, we made 'Hello Kitty' cookies together. It was a relieved to see her smiling and excited when we were making the cookies. She couldn't contained her excitement and phoned her dad to tell him how she made the
cookies... This is a recipe given by a friend, I reduce the icing sugar to 35g instead of 50g.

(A) 125g Butter (room tempt); 35g Icing Sugar
(B) 125g Plain Flour; 75g Potato Starch; 50g Honey Star/Cornflake (blend to powder form)
(Decoration) Round shaped Sugar (nose); Star shaped Sugar (hair clip); Black Sesame Seed (eyes)
Method (Very simple - no electric mixer required):

1. Mixed (A) together.
2. Add (B) and mixed completely.
3. Lastly shaped the cookies (by hand) and decorate. Bake at 150 degree C for ~ 30 minutes.
As it is hand-shaped, every piece of cookies has its own "character".

Monday, November 28, 2011

Yogurt Ice Cream

Nothing is more refreshing and satisfying than having an ice cream in a hot afternoon. My nephew and I decided to make yogurt ice cream instead of the usual ice cream. In fact, yogurt ice cream is a healthier choice. No fancy recipe... just any fruit marmalade/jam and yoghurt.
First, I scooped some fruit marmalade into the base of ice cream containter. Then, top up with natural yoghurt. Last, use chopstick to stir and mix marmalade and yogurt slightly. Store in freezer overnight and serve.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Homemade Pineapple and Apple Jam

I love organic molasses sugar and would use it whenever possible. For this jam, no exception! Enjoyed seeing my family spread it on bread (especially homemade bread) or sometimes they just taste it as its own. No preservative, no coloring, no pectin is added. I use Very simple ingredient and easy method...

2kg Ripe Pineapple

600g Green Apple400-500g

Organic Molasses Sugar (or normal castor sugar)

6nos Clove

1-2"length Cinnamon Stick Method:

1. Peeled, cored, and cut apples into small dice/cube.

2. Blend pineapple into desired texture.

3. Combine dice apple, blended pineapple, clove, and cinnamon stick in a large, heavy-based, deep saucepan. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes until pineapple is soft.

4. Add sugar and stir gently until sugar is dissolved completely.

5. Continue simmer, stir from time to time, for 45 minutes or until jam jells when tested.

6. Leave jam to cool down, remove clove and cinnamon. Then pour jam into warm sterilised jars/bottles to store. Points I followed:

- Adjust sugar amount based on the sweetness of pineapple and apple.

- Store jam in the refrigerator when its completely cool down. If leave at room temperature, mould may growth, around the 5th day.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Remedy for Kids Mild Fever - Lemon Slice

Last year during my confinement, I read a book, titled "病是教养出来的" (illnesses are cultivated), written by "许姿妙医师".
The writer is a Chinese Medicine Physician by profession but practice and advocate Waldorf Education system in raising children. In August this year, I was fortunate to be able to attend her workshop at Bodhi Temple, Penang (a beautiful place, surrounded by nature); this one day workshop is mainly focused on analyzing and educating the 4 different characters in children.

During the Q&A session at the workshop, participants were given time to ask, discuss and clarify matters related to educating children which centred around learning, commitment and caring as well as health. The workshop was a learning curve for many parents on educating children from the Waldoft perspective. One of the questions were on how to treat children's fever with lemon slice; which is penned in her book as well.
Few days ago, my 16 months old daughter was in mild fever, ~ 38+ degree C, just before the bedtime. I treated her with the "lemon slice" remedy. It works! Steps I did:
1. cradle her to deep sleep.

2. Place a slice of lemon on each of her sole and slip her feet into socks gently.

3. Also, rub her forehead and palms with wet cloth occassionally throughout the night.

4. Repeat step 2 and 3 the second night, just to make sure her body temperature maintain at normal.
** Always keep some fresh lemons in the fridge, good aids (with honey) for sore throat as well..
Thanks for the remedy, 许姿妙医师!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Animal Almond Cookies

Its heavy rain outside, in replaced of playing in the sand box, I suggested to Ying Yin, my daughter, to bake some animal cookies. She just loved the idea... Looking through what I have in the fridge and food store, here is the recipe we settled:

(A)250g Butter
90g Icing Sugar
(B) Sieve all ingredient together except almond powder

250g Plain Flour
100g Rice Flour
30g Potato Flour/Starch
100g Almond Powder
(C) Decoration

Almond Slices
Black Sesame Seeds
For top grazing

1 no egg (mixed well)

1. Preheat over at 150 degree C.
2. Cream (A) until smooth. Add (B) and mixed to form a soft dough.
3. Roll dough on working table and stamp cookies with cookies cutter of any shape that is available in our kitchen or flatten it with folk. 4. Place cookies on lined baking tray.
5. Brush egg on cookies surface and decorate with almond slice / sesame seed / any topping.
6. Bake in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until cookies lightly brown.7. Wait till cookies completely cool and store in airtight containers.
Points I followed:- Add more plain flour if dough is too soft for cookies cutter to cut.

We baked some extra sharing with babysitter and some for her friends at the kindergarden...

Monday, October 17, 2011

Granola Cup Cake

My sister gave me a box of my flavored Maple Pecan Granola. Love it as snack! I have visitors coming this evening for some chat and light food, just thought of sprinkle generous amount of Granola on my butter cake (*recipe from my Chempedak Butter Cake) turned up to be a wonderful match! Also, mixed my rum-raisin into the batter, make the cup cakes more interesting... I baked in different sizes of cup cake for easy sharing...

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Roast Chicken

A dish everyone looking forward... the entire cooking process is so rewarding. The roasting aroma filled not only the Training Room but the other rooms as well. Our chicken breast is popular, as we separated the skin and chicken breast (make a "pocket"), stuffed in generous amount of butter + chopped garlic (mixed together).

We stuffed onion, lemon, entire sprig of fresh thyme, garlic, bay leaf, salt and pepper into the chicken cavity.

Rubbed the skin with salt and pepper and olive oil.
We make sure "Basting" process is done carefully. Fat and cooking juice from roasting tray were spooned over the whole chicken to moisten it. It is important to prevent the chicken surface from drying and enhance the taste of skin in particular. Every participants were given a chance to practice the carving skills and decide our favorite part of chicken for lunch...

1 Whole Chicken

Salt and Pepper (to taste)

4 Tbsp Olive Oil

50 g Butter

3 cloves Garlic (chopped)
Stuffed in chicken cavity:

1 bulb Garlic

1 no Onion
1 no Lemon

1 sprig Thyme

1 Bay Leaf

Salt and Pepper (to taste)

Roast Gravy:

150 g Chicken Stock

2 Tbsp Flour

Salt and pepper (to taste)

Roating Vegetables (optional):

* Note: May boil (potato) and toss the vegetables in the pan before transfer to roasting tin after basting process.


1. Rub the chicken inside and out with generous amount of salt and fresh ground black pepper.
2. Preheat oven to 200-220 degree C.

3. Separate the breast area skin (make a "pocket") and stuffed in garlic butter.

4. Stuff the garlic bulb, whole lemon, onion, thyme, bay leaf, salt and pepper into the cavity.

5. Pat chicken with kitchen towel, rub olive oil all over.

6. Transfer chicken on roasting tin and roast for 45 minutes.

7. Remove the roasting tin from oven and "baste" the chicken.

8. * Put the chicken back to the oven and roast for another 45 minutes or until the chicken is cooked.

9. Allow chicken stand for 20 minutes after removal from oven before carving.
Roast Gravy:

1. Pour juice and fat from roasting tin to saucepan. Add chicken stock. Bring to boil.

2. Add flour to thicken the salt.

3. Lastly add salt and pepper to taste.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Egg and Potato Salad

"Never thought that potato can taste so good!" ... is the comment from some participants in the training room.
The potato simply absorbed flavor from mayonnaise and mustard. Together with hard-boiled egg make a perfect match! Never forget to highlight, the crunchy celery, pickled gherkin and onion enhanced the salad texture.


  • 5 nos Potatoes (large)

  • 3-4 nos Egg

  • 1/2 cup Celery (cubed)

  • 1/2 cup Onion (chopped)

  • 2-3 Pickled Gherkin (cubed)

  • 1/2 cup or more mayonnaise

  • 2 Tbsp English / Dijon Mustard

  • To taste Salt

  • To taste Pepper

  • Dill / Parsley - garnished or chopped and mixed with salad


1. Boil eggs

2. Boil potatoes with skin. May boil with bay leaf and fish sauce (optional).

3. Peel eggs and potatoes. Dice eggs. Slice or cut potatoes into any shape.

4. In a separate bowl, mixed mayonnaise and mustard well.

5. Add eggs, potatoes, celery, onion, gherkin, salt and pepper.

6. Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.

7. Serve cold.

Points I followed:

- I simply love to garnish with dill or mixed with chopped parsley. It fresh up the salad!

Thursday, October 6, 2011


It was very fun each time we prepared Trifle... we have custard, fruit, sponge cake, fruit juice and whipped cream. These ingredients are usually arranged in layers with fruit and sponge on the bottom, and custard and cream on top; but with our creativity and artistic hands, we prepared our very own charactered trifle, as long as it consists of 5 layers...
This is a very cheerful dessert, contribute from its colorful layers. Kids would definately love to prepare and enjoy it!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Cream of Mushroom Soup

Mushroom Soup is one of the popular (western) soup in this part of the world. Unfortunately, to many of the young generation, the instant powder/canned form or those found in the fast-food restaurant is their version of mushroom soup. Therefore, a few couldn't accept our freshly cooked original recipe... Of course, most of us enjoyed and asked for more...

To me, the most important is be able to introduce this homemade version... and I have made many mums became the best Cook in the eyes of their children when they used my recipe! It is very encouraging and joyous moment to see the satisfied faces.


  • 500 g *Mushrooms (sliced)

  • 90 g Butter or Olive oil

  • 2 nos Onion - medium (chopped)

  • 3 cloves Garlic (crushed)

  • 2-3 Tbsp Plain Flour

  • 1.5 lit Chicken Stock

  • 2 Bay Leaf (medium)

  • To taste Black pepper (freshly ground)

  • To taste Salt

  • Parsley - garnish (chopped)


1. Heat up butter and add in garlic and onions. Cook until soft but not brown. ~ 5 to 6 minutes.

2. Add sliced mushrooms, cook over a high heat for 3 minutes, stir constantly.

3. Sprinkle flour over the mushrooms, mix well to combine.

4. Pour in the hot chicken stock and bring to boil. Add bay leaf and leave the soup to cool for a few minutes.

5. Place soup in food processor. Blend well till smooth.

6. Return the soup into saucepan. Season with salt and peper and reheat until boiling.

7. Stir in the cream (optional). Garnished with chopped parsley.
Points I followed*:

- Used fresh white button mushroom, swiss brown mushroom (both large & small), fresh shiitake mushroom and canned button mushroom.

- If lighter color preferred, used more white button mushroom.- For those don't like the woody mushroom smell, reduced amount of shiitake mushroom.