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Cinnamon Teacake



_20181024_174941Done in literally 45 minutes! So good for those sudden unexpected guests who drop by .. But that hardly happens here in Melbourne. I miss that aspect of KL… we need to make appointments way ahead to visit friends over here! Lol…. Melbourne culture I guess so we just rock with it. 😎 This one is again adapted from The Australian Women’s Weekly The Baking Collection.


Ingredients :

Prep +cook time 45 minutes.    Serves 10

  • 60g butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup, minus 3 tbsp castor sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup self raising flour
  • 15g butter, melted, extra
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp castor sugar

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease a 20cm round cake tin, line base with baking paper.

2. Beat butter with sugar until fluffy, then add the vanilla extract  On low speed crack in the egg and slowly combine then increase to high speed till light and fluffy. Stir in milk and sifted flour. Pour mixture into the cake tin.

3. Bake teacake for 25-30 minutes. Cover the cake with a piece of baking paper if it’s browning too much. Stand in tin for 5 minutes then turn onto a wire rack.

4. Brush top of hot teacake with melted butter and sprinkle with combined cinnamon and sugar. Yummers!


Melt and Mix Strawberry Yoghurt Cake

DSC_4646This has become one of my favourite cakes and I think I must have made it twice this week! Yes! I was also trying to deplete my strawberry stock. This is what happens when you go on a frenzy and buy a box of strawberries for just 10 dollars! After that came the news of the needles found in strawberries…so yes I literally had to finish it off. Btw do you guys know about the ‘hack’ to make your strawberries last longer in the fridge? All you need to do is get a bowl of water and pour in perhaps 2-3 tbsp of vinegar..(I used apple cider vinegar), then just soak the strawberries with it’s box into this bowl of water, just sort of slosh it around so that all of the strawberries get wet. Take it out and place it on some kitchen towels and into the fridge it goes. I think the last time I bought the ‘box of strawberries’ , I did this diligently and it lasted for about 2 weeks . So yeah..try it! OK back to the recipe. Again another winning recipe from Australian Women’s Weekly.

Serves 8

Prep + Cook time 1 hour 15 minutes


  • 2 1/2 cups( 375g) self raising flour
  • 250g strawberries ,roughly chopped
  • 2/3 cup castor sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs, beaten lightly
  • 1/2 cup greek style yoghurt
  • 125g butter, unsalted and melted
  • 1 cup roasted almonds, chopped roughly
  • 1 cup greek style yoghurt, to serve

Macerated strawberries

  • 250g strawberries, halved/quartered
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp castor sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 180 deg C. Line base and side of a 20cm springformpan with baking paper.
  2. Sift flour three times into a big bowl and add to it the rest of the ingredients and half the chopped almonds.
  3. Spoon this mixture into the baking pan and sprinkle on top the rest of the chopped almonds. If you aren’t keen on that crunchy almonds with every bite, skip the 1/2 cup almonds that you add to the mixture and just sprinkle the amount you want on the top.
  4. Bake cake for around 50 minutes or until the skewer comes out clean. Leave cake in the pan for about 10-15 minutes to cool off then release the ring and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  5. Make the macerated strawberries by mixing everything together in a bowl and let it stand for 20 minutes.
  6. Serve cake topped with macerated strawberries and extra yoghurt.


Baked vegan char siu buns


This was taken adapted from one of my favourite food blog sites where you can get gorgeous Chinese recipes and more.

The bun dough is lovely and and you could add any filling to it. Now moving on to the recipe.

Char siu bao dough ingredients

  • 1/2 cup water + another 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp yeast
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup bread flour + 2 2/3 cup bread flour

Living in Melbourne…. Everything is not at room temperature except in summer. So what I do is turn on the oven to 30 degrees or so, put my kitchenaid mixing bowl into the oven for 5-10 minutes while I get the ingredients ready.

Now in the mixing bowl add 1/2 cup warm water, 1 tsp yeast and 1/3 cup bread flour. Mix well and leave it to froth, which is the yeast getting activated. This could take about 15 minutes. Now if it doesn’t, it just means the yeast is too old or the water was too hot.

Once you have the frothy mixture, add the melted coconut oil and the other 1/2 cup of warm water .Mix well and now add the rest of the bread flour ( 2 2/3 cups) and the 1/2 cup castor sugar. Turn on your kitchen aid with the dough hook and let it go on speed 2-3 for about 10 minutes. Once you have the dough which will be soft and supple ( feel the dough  it won’t be tight), cover the bowl with cling film and I put it back intoa wwarm oven for an hour or until its doubled in size. While that happens, we can get on with the tofu filling.

Ingredients for the filling:

  • 1 block of firm tofu ( not the fried tofu) – drained, pat dried and cut into cubes
  • 1 medium sized yellow onion chopped
  • 1 1/4 cup vegetable stock ( tastes better) or water
  • 1-2 tbsp dark soy sauce ( I use ABC Kecap manis)
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1. 5 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp Hoisin sauce ( I didn’t have this which is why I added more dark soy sauce)
  • 2 – 3 tbsp flour

Get a pan, add a couple of tablespoons of sunflower oil, then add the chopped onions. Saute till softened then add the cubed tofu, stir fry gently for 1-2 minutes then add all the sauces and the stock or water. Gently mix well and taste. Add salt and pepper as needed or adjust with the soy sauce to your liking. Once the mixture starts simmering add the flour and mix well without breaking up the tofu. Turn off the stove and let the mixture cool. If I’m in a hurry  after it’s cool down a little I put it into the fridge.

Get your dough which has doubled in size and again into the kitchenaid with the dough hook for another minute to get rid of air bubbles.

Preheat the oven to 175 degrees Celsius  Now get your board out, dust with flour and take your dough. Roll it out into a log about 30 cm long and divide into 10 equal pieces or even smaller if you want to. Take each ball of dough and roll it out to about 10cm diameter keeping the centre thicker. I love using the rolling pin which tapers towards the ends which helps to thin out the edges when you roll it a certain way. Once you’ve done this, put about 1.5 tbsp of filling and bring the edges together pinching it together, then turn it over so that the pinched edge is on the bottom. Smoothen out the top. Do the same for the rest of the dough balls. Cover with a cling film or moist tea towel and leave to rest for 15-20 minutes. Just before it goes into the oven  melt 1 tbsp sugar in 2 tbsp water and brush the top of the buns and sprinkle with some black sesame seeds.

Lower the oven temperature to 150 degrees Celsius but I keep it at 175 and lower it in the last 10 minutes.  Bake on fan forced oven for 25 minutes. Keep an eye on it after 20 minutes as some ovens are hotter and the buns if smaller tend to cook faster. Sometimes you don’t get the beautiful brown top, so I occasionally turn the oven to grill function at 200 degrees just for 2 minutes. Take the buns out and give it another brush of the dissolved sugar.

And that’s it… It’s done. Just be careful to not dig in immediately as the filling is steaming hot!


Claypot chicken with potatoes

One pot meals… What can I say.. it’s a life saver. I love claypot chicken rice..  I mean luvvv it and I still remember the smell wafting down the road from the seedy looking restaurant near my school.. Dirty as it looked the smells were awesome.. 😜 char koey teow, carrot cake.. Claypot chicken rice.. 😜 😜

I was divided between throwing the whole thing into the slow cooker or the claypot but alas time wasn’t on my side. I’m sure it would taste awesome coming out of the slow cooker with the meat falling off the bone. This one requires some searing to get some colour on the chicken wings.



Serves 4

  • 500g chicken wings
  • 300g of potatoes
  • 3 tbsp of chinese cooking  wine or sake
  • 5 scallions cut into 2 inches in length
  • 2 cm of ginger sliced
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tsp dark soy sauce or kecap manis
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1-2 tsp of sugar

Marinate the chicken wings with the cooking wine or sake for about 30 minutes. While it marinates, slice the ginger and scallions… And literally that’s it. So cool right.

Get your claypot or a wok, add about 2-3 tbsp of vegetable oil and sear the chicken and potatoes for a few minutes till you get the nice roasted colour. Add the ginger and scallions saving some for garnish later. Pour about a cup of water to just about submerge the chicken and add salt to taste. Let it simmer on medium low heat for about 10 minutes then add the light soy sauce and dark soy sauce to the pan together with the 1.5 tsp of sugar and the potatoes.  Check seasoning and add black pepper powder to taste .Let this simmer for about 20 min and it’s done. Add a tsp of Sesame oil and serve with jasmine rice and stir fried broccoli.


Mushroom pepper fry



Do you love mushrooms? I do ! I do! Unfortunately it’s a high purine food ( which raises your uric acid levels ) so I have it once in 10 days.. 😦

I came across this recipe while browsing the blog Vegrecipesofindia..check out the website for more delicious vegetarian recipes and lovely shots! vegrecipesofindia for some mushroom recipe..and I made it quickly before I changed my mind! It would be delicious with some Jeera rice or a mild Veg pulao but since I was running late to work, and kids were hungry I just made some chappatis ( I usually have some chappati dough in the fridge)  to go with it. Wallah..simple and filling dish..not to mention delicious. Try it out and let me know how you like it.


  • 250g brown mushrooms, sliced thick
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 large onion, sliced thick
  • 1.5 tsp minced garlic
  • 1.5 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 medium sized green pepper – sliced thick then halved ( I used yellow)
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds + 1 tbsp black pepper- ground coarsely
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 green chilly -sliced
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder



Get a pan, pour in 2 tbsp coconut oil ( it’s awfully good for your health) or olive oil, add 1 tsp mustard seeds, once it pops, add the sliced onions. Give it a good stir and let it caramelize ( very important step to bring out the flavour in your dishes) lightly, then in goes the minced ginger and garlic. Stir fry till raw smell goes away.

Now add in the sliced mushrooms, saute till it’s dry ( mushrooms let out water when they cook), then add the capsicum and some salt, stir fry for a few minutes just enough but without losing the crunch. Green chilly goes in next. Now add the coarsely ground pepper and fennel, together with the chopped curry leaves. Stir fry for a few minutes allowing the pepper to cook through followed by the cumin powder and turmeric powder. A few more minutes on medium heat then off the stove. Stir in some chopped coriander leaves and let it sit for 10 minutes to let the flavour infuse.



Serves 2-3

Puff Pastry Cabbage Pie

I recently bought a recipe book called ‘Best vegetarian Recipes’ and this recipe seemed too easy to make. What’s more, it’s easily made as a snack for kids after school, instead of giving them sugar coated cereals/chocolates etc etc..  🙂

Ok back to the recipe.

Recipe (serves 4-6)

  • 300g cabbage sliced thin
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • salt
  • 1 onion sliced thin
  • 3-4 tbsp. butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 sheet ready made chilled puff pastry , measuring about 40x20cm
  • salt

For the glaze

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp breadcrumbs ( I used panko)

Discard outer leaves of the cabbage and stalk and chop finely. Heat butter in a large pan. Add cumin seeds ,let sizzle for 30 seconds, then add finely sliced onions. Sweat the onions till lightly caramelised, then add cabbage. Season with salt. Stir fry for about 15-20minutes until soft.

Put eggs in a pan, cover with cold water and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10minutes, then drain. Remove shells from eggs and chop it up. Put the chopped eggs into a bowl then add the cooked cabbage to it, mix well.

Preheat oven to 220 deg C. Put puff pastry sheet on a dampened baking tray. Spread the cabbage and egg mixture lengthways on one half of the pastry sheet. Brush the edges with water and fold the other side over to enclose it. Seal together by pressing with a fork along joins.

Whisk together the egg yolk and water. Brush the pastry with the mixtureand make some holes on the top with a fork. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over.

Bake the pie in the oven for 12-15minutes, until the pastry is crisp and golden brown.

Cut into portions and enjoy! 🙂

Aubergine with prawns in oyster sauce

Make this tonight! It’s just too easy and still mouthwatering.  Made it in about 25 minutes after coming home from work and the kids loved it!

Recipe: (Adapted from BBC Goodfood magazine)

  • 3 tbsp. sunflower oil, plus 2 tsp
  • 1 aubergine, cut into rounds , then 3 cm batons
  • 1 red/yellow pepper cut into strips
  • 6 spring onions, trimmed and cut into 3 cm
  • ginger 3cm, chopped fine
  • 4 garlic cloves , finely sliced
  • 200g large prawns
  • 3 tbsp. oyster sauce
  • cooked rice, egg noodles to serve

1. Heat the 3 tbsp oil in a wok or large, non stick pan frying pan. Toss in the aubergine and cook for abour 7-8 mins till starting to soften. Add the pepper and a splash of water and cook for another 3 mins or so. Remove from pan and set aside.

2.  Add the remaining 2 tsp oil to the pan, add the ginger and garlic , cook for about 1 minute, constantly stirring. Add the prawns and stir fry until pink and half cooked.

3. Now tip in the aubergine and peppers back into the pan and add the oyster sauce, plus 5 tbsp of water. Add most of the spring onions. Simmer until slightly thickened and then scatter the remaining spring onions.

4. Amazing one pot meal ready in 20 mins and serve it with brown/white rice or noodles.