Monday, August 31, 2020


Since learning how to 'treat' brinjals before cooking, I don't mind cooking brinjals often as the cooking time is short and dish can be ready in minutes. You will probably see many fried brinjal dishes in time to come.
The brinjals is cooked to soft yet the bright purplish colour still stays. For this dish, I have added big long green and red chillies that is spicy but sweet.   The brinjals are sweet when cooked, only little seasoning is needed.  This dish takes only about 4 minutes to cook, aromatic, appetisingly good with rice. Nice vegetable dish. 
1-2 medium size brinjals - cut wedges
some salt, oil and cornstarch 
some sliced red carrots [for colour]
1-2 long green and red chillies - seeded and cut wedges
1 big onion - peeled and sliced
2-3 cloves garlic - sliced
some light soy sauce to taste
  1. Mix brinjals with some salt, oil and cornstarch.  Toss and mix well. Set aside.
  2. Heat some oil in a non stick wok, add in brinjals and carrots.  Spread out in a single layer if possible.  Fry until slightly charred [about 2 minutes].  Push aside add in garlic to fry until aromatic.
  3. Stir in chillies and onions Continue to fry, then add in some light soy sauce for extra flavour and water.  Toss well.
  4. Dish up to taste. 

Friday, August 14, 2020


Can say it has been a long, long while I did not hand knead my bread dough from stretch, think ever since I was using the electric mixer.  But now, I may have to knead with my hands as my electric mixer for 3 decades is 'out of order'.

Back to this recipe, is adapted from Che Nom Roti Benggali Recipe with some modifications. Of course, her bread looks good [soft and chewy].   Mine is not bad too but I need to practise my hand kneading to get to her standard if possible.

[1 Pullman loaf]
350 gm bread flour + 1-2 tbsp wheat bran
1 tbsp castor sugar
1/4 tsp salt
50-70 ml water or more if dough is too dry
1 tbsp magarine
1-2 tbsp raisins
150 ml lukewarm water
1.5-2 tsp instant yeast
1 tbsp sugar
  1. Add yeast to lukewarm water in a cup, add in sugar.  Stir well and leave for 2-3 minutes until frothy.
  2. Mix bread flour, wheat bran, sugar, salt in a mixing bowl.  Add in yeast mixture and extra water gradually to knead into a soft dough.
  3. Remove from bowl and knead on a smooth table top for about 5-10 minutes.  
  4. Add in magarine and continue to knead until smooth, not sticky and pliable.  Add in raisins, knead to incorporate into dough.
  5. Shape into a round ball, cover to proof for 20-30 minutes or double in size.
  6. Punch down dough to release trapped air, roll and shape into a Swiss roll dough.
  7. Place on a Pullman tin lined with parchment paper.  Cover to proof until double in size [about 1 hour].
  8. Bake in a preheated oven at 160 degrees C for 35-40 minutes.
  9. Remove from tin to cool on wire rack before slicing to serve.

Thursday, August 13, 2020


Many people will scrape away the purple skin of eggplant when frying as the bright purple colour will turned brown when one does not know how to prevent discolourisation.  There is one simple way that can help to retain its vibrant purple colour.  Try the method below [no boiling, steaming or deep-frying] and you will be happy to cook eggplants for your family for its benefits. 

Benefits of eating eggplants:  a great source of vitamins and minerals, helps digestion, improves heart health, prevents cancer, increase brain function and prevents anemia.

2 medium size eggplants - washed and cut wedges
some chopped spring onions
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp sesame seed oil [optional]
Seasoning Sauce
2-3 garlic - chopped
1 red chilli - sliced or chopped
2-3 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tsp sugar
3 tbsp water
  1. Cut eggplants, add some salt, cornstarch and oil [this will prevent oxidation that discolourised them].  Toss well and set aside.
  2. Combined sauce ingredients.
  3. Heat a non stick wok, add oil.  Pan fry the eggplants [1] in a single layer until light brown and soft.  
  4. Pour in the seasoning sauce.  Stir fry to mix well until eggplants are cooked through.
  5. Add chopped spring onions.  Stir and dish up to serve.

Wednesday, August 12, 2020


Making paus is not difficult if you have the perseverance and patience to try until you succeed.  It may not be smooth sailing but it is worth giving it a try.  Stick to a sure can [fail proof] pau skin recipe and you are sure to create indefinite varieties of paus with various fillings [sweet or savoury] and in various shapes.
Sweet pau fillings are easily available from the stores which makes pau making at home less tedious.  You can even try preparing any pau filling that you are confident with.
The pau filling which I used here is from the store, the sweetness and taste is acceptable to me.  You can used less filling if the paste is too sweet.  Personally,  for home consumption, I prefer paus with a thicker skin with less filling.
Ingredients Pau Skin Dough
[makes about 20 paus]
500 gm pau flour
1 tsp instant yeast
1 tsp sugar
270 ml lukewarm water or slightly more [add gradually]
Pau Filling
250-300 gm Pandan Taoyong Paste - store bought [can used any store bought sweet paste of your choice]
  1. Combined sugar with some water in a cup or bowl.  Sprinkle in yeast and leave for 1 minute or so.  Stir until dissolved.  It should be smooth and silky.
  2. Gradually pour into flour, mix into a rough dough.  Gradually add in remaining water and knead until dough is soft, smooth and pliable.  
  3. Shape into a ball, dust with some flour to prevent sticking to hand.  Place in the mixing bowl, cover to rest for 20 minutes or until double in size.
  4. Punch down dough, then roll into round.  Divide into 20 equal portions and roll into balls.  Flatten each one in circle. Flatten the edges, place filling [about less than a tablespoon] in the centre, gather the edges together to seal to make a round pau or pleat the edges into a pau shape.
  5. Place on parchment paper and steaming tray.  Proof for about 20-30 minutes or until double in size.
  6. Finish doing the rest.  Place steaming tray over rapidly boiling.  Cover to steam for 12 minutes.  Off heat, leave in steamer and remove paus only after 2-3 minutes.
  7. Cool on wire rack or serve immediately.  

Monday, August 10, 2020


August 3, 2020 marks half year of the Chinese lunar calendar.  Some Chinese families will prepare Kuih Ee as offerings to the deities or ancestors.  I do not follow this procedure, it is not a must for my family but with some extra free time, I did it.
Anyway, with all the ingredients available here is a recipe which I like to share.  For the syrup, I used a small bit of Penang local ginger [popularly known as Air Itam ginger] and Gula Merah.  The syrup is aromatic and sweetness is acceptable as a dessert. I also add some chopped red dates.  As for the rice balls, I used glutinous rice flour, pumpkin puree, water and some white sugar.  
[serves 4-5]
150 gm pumpkin puree
150 gm glutinous rice flour
1 tbsp fine sugar
a few tbsp water
600 ml water or more [depends on the sweetness you prefer]
100 gm gula merah
1 small knob of ginger - rinsed and lightly bruised
6 red dates - deseeded and chopped

  1. Steamed sliced pumpkin for 20 minutes over high heat or until soft.  Mash into puree while still hot with 1 tbsp fine sugar [optional].  Leave to cool.
  2. Bring water to boil with ginger until aromatic.  Add in sugar, continue to boil until sugar dissolves.  Tastes to adjust bearing in mind that red dates will add sweetness to the syrup. Add in red dates, continue to boil until soft.  Off heat, leave to cool completely.  Tip: can prepare earlier before preparing the rice balls.
  3. In a big bowl, mix glutinous rice flour gradually to pumpkin puree then knead into a smooth pliable dough.  Add some water gradually if dough is too dry.  Leave to rest for 20-30 minutes before shaping into round balls.
  4. Bring a pot of water to rolling boil, drop in rice balls in batches.  The rice balls will float to the surface when cooked.  Remove with a serrated ladle and drop them into a bowl of cool water, then dish up using the serrated ladle.
  5. Add to prepare syrup.
  6. Serve.