Peach Trifle

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 Trifles are old school deserts. It is made up of layers of plain sponge cake, sliced fruits, custard, cream, jelly and of course the alcohol. There are many variations to this dessert and most  families have their own signature style.

The D’cruz family trifle i learnt to make when i was in my teens. This Peach Trifle however is not the old family recipe, its a modernized version. I made this Peach trifle for a recent birthday party. I stuck to the usual basics of cake and fruit, but gave it a little twist. If you are tired of birthday cakes, give this a try.

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Poached Salmon with Carrot and Ginger Puree, Sauteed Spring Beans and Roasted Potatoes

Poached Salmon with Carrot and Ginger Puree, Sauteed Spring Beans and Roasted Potatoes
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Long title. I know. This is what i made for dinner today. I actually wanted to cook this last week but things came up and had to do it today instead. So, I am back in KL and have settled into my little kitchen. So you can expect post and recipes to be more frequent ( fingers crossed!).

So back to this plate of yummy-ness.  Yes it does seem like a lot to do and I definitely think that this is better as a weekend project dinner than a weekday meal. Prep for this took about 15 mins.only but cook time took about an hour. Continue reading

Kale and Basil Pesto Pasta

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First of let me apologise  for the picture quality; these were taken on my old phone and the lighting was bad. But please do not let the neon green hue of this pasta dish deter you from trying this recipe out. I love this dish and try to make at least a big batch every month. I portion it out into smaller containers and pop it in the freezer. It make a great healthy quick meal. 

So everyone knows how to make basil pesto, it is a pretty common dish and i bet you are thinking emm, kale? Continue reading

Oatmeal Pancakes

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Pancakes is one of the favorite breakfast items at my house. They are so easy to whip up, tastes great with any imaginable topping, spread or filling and they are great for feeding bigger groups.  I usually make regular pancakes but this time i wanted something healthier so decided to swap white flour for oatmeal instead. Though the texture of these Oatmeal Pancakes does feel somewhat different, i personally feel the oatmeal gives the pancake a more nutty mouth feel.  

Try out this Oatmeal Pancake recipe today and let me know what you think.

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Bubbly Brunch at Shook!

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I was recently invited to attend Shook!’s  relaunch of their infamous bubbly brunch. This time around the brunch takes on a Mad Hatters theme. The team at Shook! Certainly went all out for this event with a whole range of food and drink plus décor centered around the mad hatters theme.

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The food selection at the brunch was provided by all 4 kitchens in Shook! Shushi, sashimi, lamb and beef roast, pizza, pasta, fresh seafood, salads, Chinese dishes, rice, noodles, cheese and of course desert, the food selection at this buffet guarantees to have something for even the pickiest eater.

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Held every Sunday from 12pm to 4pm, the Bubbly Brunch at Shook is priced at RM268++ per person with free-flowing Moet & Chandon champagne; while the food-only option is priced at RM168++ per person.

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The dessert selection was very impressive. We loved the Rum Chocolate Cake and Raspberry Fool!

 

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 Shook! 

Address: LG1 Feast Village Starhill Gallery, 181 Jalan Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur

Tel: 03 – 2719 8535/8536

http://www.starhillgallery.com/

Lemon Ricotta Bundt Cake

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I LOVE thekitchn.com and loved them even more when I bit into a slice of this heavenly cake. I haven’t always been a huge fan of lemon cakes but this gorgeous baby has converted me!

This recipe is meant for a bundt cake mold but if you don’t have one (I didn’t the first time I bake this), just used a 9 inch square or round tin. This Lemon Ricotta Bundt Cake is a great cake to keep in the fridge or freezer, it doesn’t not dry out at all! Even after sitting in the fridge for over a week it was still moist and fresh. Do yourself a favor and bake this cake this weekend. You will thank me for it later.

 

Lemon Ricotta Cake
Serves 10
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Prep Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
For the cake
  1. 3 cups all-purpose flour
  2. 2 teaspoons baking powder
  3. 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  4. 3/4 teaspoon salt
  5. 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  6. 2 cups granulated sugar
  7. 4 large eggs
  8. 2 large egg yolks
  9. 2 tablespoons lemon zest
  10. 1/4 cup lemon juice
  11. 1 cup ricotta
  12. 1 1/2 teaspoons poppy seeds
For the glaze
  1. 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped out
  2. 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  3. 2 tablespoons milk
  4. Sliced almonds, to top
Instructions
  1. 1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour a bundt pan extremely well. Sift together the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  2. 2. With an electric mixer, beat butter on high until light and creamy. Add the sugar and beat until fluffy. With the mixer on medium-low, add the eggs one at a time. Add in the lemon zest and lemon juice, followed by the ricotta.
  3. 3. Stop mixer and scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl. With the mixer on low, gradually add in the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined. Stop the mixer and fold in the poppy seeds.
  4. 4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake 50 to 60 minutes, until a cake tester or skewer inserted in the cake comes out clean or with just few crumbs.
  5. 5. Let cake cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes, or until you can comfortably touch the pan. Use a flexible rubber spatula to release the edges of the cake from the pan, then invert the cake onto a large plate or cooling rack. Cool completely.
Notes
  1. Once the cake has completely cooled, you can cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for a few days or freeze it for several weeks. Allow the cake to thaw in the fridge before glazing.
Karen Dcruz http://www.karendcruz.com/

Valentine’s Day Special: Red Velvet Cupcakes

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Red Velvet is just the perfect cupcake for Valentine’s Day. It’s not to chocolatey and over powering, light enough for you to indulge yet sinful enough to make it a decadent V-day treat. Since V-day is this weekend, i thought i’d share my go to recipe here. This recipe is an adaptation from Georgetown cupcakes’ Cupcake Diaries. As usual i’ve edited the recipe to suit me; no food coloring and lesser sugar. Have a go at it this weekend. It just might be the best V-day gift you’ve ever given.

 

Red Velvet Cupcakes
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Ingredients
  1. (The recipe says it makes about 24. But if you are using a ice cream scoop as a measure for dividing the batter you will be getting about 30 pieces)
  2. • 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour ( not self raising)
  3. • 1 teaspoon salt
  4. • 170g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  5. • 1 1/2 cups castor sugar
  6. • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  7. • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  8. • 4 tablespoons natural cocoa powder, sifted
  9. • 1 1/2 cups whole milk, at room temperature
  10. • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  11. • 1 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  12. For the frosting
  13. • 225g unsalted butter, room temperature ( not too runny)
  14. • 4 cups confectioners sugar
  15. • 500 grams cream cheese (2 Philly bars), cut into 8 pieces and chilled
  16. • pinch of salt
  17. • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract ( Madagascar is the best.)
Instructions
  1. For the cupcakes:1. Preheat oven to 180C and line muffins tins with paper liners.
  2. 2. In a small bowl, whisk flour and salt together. Set aside.
  3. 3. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and the sugar together and cream on medium speed until it is light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  4. 4. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
  5. 5. In a small bowl, whisk cocoa powder, and vanilla together until throughly combined and no lumps remain. Very slowly add to the mixer, and mix at low speed until well combined.
  6. 6. Add in one third of the flour mixture, mix until combined, then add in one third of the milk. Mix until combined and repeat adding in the flour then milk, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition.
  7. 7. In a small bowl, add the baking soda to the vinegar. Mix well and add to the batter. Mix until just incorporated, about 10 seconds.
  8. 8. Scoop batter using an ice cream scoop into the muffin tin, filling them two-thirds full. Bake for 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool for at least 2 hours.
  9. For the frosting
  10. 1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, cream butter and confectioners sugar together on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  11. 2. Add in the cream cheese, 1 piece at a time, until well blended, about 30 seconds. You may need to scrape the bowl after every other addition. Add in the salt and vanilla extract. Whip the icing on high speed for about 1 minutes to make it light and fluffy.
  12. 3. Use immediately, or refrigerate until ready to use.
Notes
  1. You will notice that my Red Velvet cupcakes are not as red as commercial ones or even the original recipe. This is because i am against using food coloring in my baking and have chosen to exclude it. I feel that the 'Red' color my cupcakes have are good enough. Cos what matters is the flavour, right?
Adapted from The Cupcake Diaries
Adapted from The Cupcake Diaries
Karen Dcruz http://www.karendcruz.com/

 

 

Blueberry Oat Squares

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These are really simple and quick to make and tastes delicious. Great to keep in the fridge for a quick breakfast, mid morning snack, or late night munchies!!

I don’t normally buy blueberries because they are so expensive in Malaysia. But luck would have it for me to find a 2 for 1 deal at Ben’s Independent Grocer last weekend. Let me tell you how much i love this supermarket! BIG is like a mecca for foodies especially people who love fresh, gourmet, artisan produce such as the locally grown Kale which i found which was so unbelievably priced! I have been yearning to try kale after reading so much about it on line but it has always been so expensive! But lo and behold, BIG had Kale, fresh and cheap!  Will blog more about BIG and the many things i have been buying from them one of these days!

Now for the recipe. It’s really easy.

 

Blueberry Oat Squares

ingredients

Part 1
250g Blueberries
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup water
1- 2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp Vanilla extract

Blueberries bubbling away…almost done.
My wooden spatula stained pink forever!

– wash the blueberries, put into pan with all the above and boil over medium flame till blueberries are soft and have popped. You can help it along by using your spatula to smash it, but not too much.

– Taste before the mixture dries up. Mine was too sour so i added 2TB of Brown sugar. The original recipe called for some cornstarch, but i didn’t feel the need to use it.

– Once you are happy with the taste and its has turned into the consistency of jam or pie filling, take it off the heat and set aside. Oh you can also use this mixture for pies, puffs or muffins.

Part 2.
3 cups oatmeal (regular,  not instant)
½ tsp cinnamon
1½ tsp baking powder ( i didn’t use)
¼ tsp salt
1/4 cups butter, melted
6 Tbsp honey
6 Tbsp water
1 tsp vanilla

Buttered and lined square tin.
It’s best to leave the extra paper hanging out. Helps lifting the square out later

– Butter and line a 8 inch square tin. I used a 9 inch cos that’s the only one i had.

– Put 1½ cups of the oatmeal into a food processor and process into a fine powder. Pour it into a medium-sized mixing bowl and add the remaining oatmeal, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt. Mix well.

– Stir in the melted butter, agave nectar, water and vanilla, and mix well. Spread half of the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing well to cover the bottom of the pan. Spoon the blueberry filling over the batter, and cover the blueberries with the remaining batter.

As you can see i didn’t have enough for my top layer

– Bake for 30 minutes, or until the top is lightly browned. Allow to cool before cutting into Squares.

I think the next time i try this is will add some coconut on top the top later. Would taste yummy!

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