Monday, May 26, 2014

DDMT Steamed Horlicks Kaya Cake (超好吃蒸好力克加椰蛋糕)

Believe it or not, this is a cake that I have been yearning and craving for the past 1 year. And did I tell you that it is so difficult to get hold of Horlicks in Belgium? I got a tiny bottle last year from a shop in Antwerp Chinatown to make the DDMT Steamed Horlicks Cupcakes, and it has been out of stock ever since, no luck every time I went there grocery shopping. 

In order to get my Horlicks fix, we specially drove 75km (more than 1 hour drive due to busy traffic) to Stonemanor Everberg, the one and only British supermarket in Belgium, to get some Horlicks. Imagine my excitement when I saw Horlicks on the shelf, I immediately grabbed hold of 3 bottles, and the British cashier guy must be very amused why I was stocking up on Horlicks. Also on that day, I dropped by the house of Nasifriet to say Hi and we had a beautiful sunny afternoon "frolicking" in her lovely garden with my 2 cutie pies, drinking freshly made soya milk from Joyoung Soya Milk Maker. Oh, don't get me started on Joyoung, another household appliance to add to my wish-list. :)

Back to this Steamed Horlicks Kaya Cake, why did I call it DDMT (Die Die Must Try) again? I realise if I keep saying every cake that I made is DDMT, then I will lose credibility, it seems I am always bragging about how good my bakes are. But the truth is, this cake is called DDMT by the person who posted the cake originally, so I am just following suit. It is indeed DDMT, try it and you will know. Your hands will keep reaching for another piece, and it is a lovely cake to make for festive occasions such as CNY or Hari Raya.

Btw, it is easier to get Kaya (Coconut Egg Jam) than Horlicks in Belgium. Why? Simply because I made my own, haha.

I officially declare this as a keeper recipe!!! Only those Horlicks lovers will understand how nice this cake is!!!

Adapted from Irene Tan's recipe on Violet Fenying's FB. (中文原食谱请点击这里)
(Took 3/4 of the recipe for a 7-inch square tin. Original recipe was meant for a 8-inch square tin.)

Ingredients A
188g butter (room temp)
75g brown sugar

Ingredients B
4.5 eggs (225g)

Ingredients C (mix well)
75g evaporated milk
75g condensed milk
94g horlicks
94g kaya (I used my own Homemade Kaya)

Ingredients D (sifted)
140g plain flour (I used patisserie flour)
0.75 tsp baking powder

1. Place ingredients A in a big mixing bowl, and whisk using cake-mixer at medium speed until light and creamy.

2. Add eggs one at a time into the batter and beat until fluffy each time.

3. Mix ingredients C separately in a bowl and add it to the batter, whisk briefly at low speed until well-combined. 

4. Add in ingredients D (sifted flour), and fold in gently using either  a spatula or manual egg-whisk until it is well-incorporated and no longer lumpy.

5. Pour into a lined and greased 7-inch square tin and cover tightly with aluminium foil. (I was using a 7-inch square tin with removable base and to prevent leaking, I double lined the inside of my tin with a layer of aluminium foil followed by a layer of parchment paper. And I greased the parchment paper lightly with baking spray.)

6. You have to prepare a steamer well in advance, the water must be boiling. Put in the cake tin inside the steamer and cover the lid. Steam over HIGH  heat for 1st 15 min, then over MEDIUM heat for next 1 hour, until the cake is cooked. Test using a toothpick, the cake is cooked when the toothpick comes out clean. (Total time taken for me was 1 hr 25 min, see notes below. Original recipe took 1 h 15 min. This reduced recipe should take between +/- 1 h to 1 h 15 min. Pls check at 60min and again at 75min, if it is not cooked, put it back and continue steaming at high heat.)

7. Remove the cake from steamer when ready, and allow it to cool a while. Run a sharp knife around the sides of the cake and invert it onto a cake rack. 

- I took a total of 1 h 25 min to steam this cake. I checked after 1 hour and my cake was very wobbly. So I turned to HIGH heat and steamed further for 15 min and checked again, still not ready. So I steamed on HIGH heat for another 10 min, total 1 h 25 min. My timing is just a reference, every steamer and stove differs, so pls stick to the recipe timing and extend the time if necessary.

- There are a few reasons why I took longer than the stated time. One reason being I used a 7-inch square tin, which is a little too big for my 26-inch steamer and I could barely close the lid of the steamer, leaving very little room for the steam to rise above. Second reason, we have a vitroceramic stove which is not ideal for steaming as the heat is not as powerful as a gas stove. Third reason, my steamer ran out of water and I only  filled it towards the end of the steaming, so half the time it was not steaming optimally. Last but not least, due to my double lining and covering with aluminium foil on top, my cake seemed to take longer to cook, perhaps there was too much insulation? Perhaps the next time I should use a 8-inch round cake tin, without removable base so that I don't have to double line it.

- This reduced recipe is 3/4 of the original recipe, so if you want to use the original full quantity, just divide by 3 and multiply by 4 to get 100%. And you need to use a 8-inch square tin or 9-inch round tin for the full recipe. For this reduced 3/4 recipe, you may use either a 7-inch square or 8-inch round tin. Rule of thumb to convert square tins to round tins : always add 1 inch, for eg. 7-inch square = 8-inch round, 8-inch square = 9-inch round. Just do your Math and you will see the logic.

- The cake has the texture of a honeycomb cake and is quite dense, it is about 2 inches in height. I thought it could be due to the mistakes I made in steaming, that it did not rise that high. But I checked the picture of the original recipe, the cake looked dense and wasn't that high either. So the conclusion is, this is not a fluffy cake, it is supposed to have a slightly heavy texture.

- This cake is, in my humble opinion, moist, sweet, malty and very nutritious, hahaha. I think the cake tastes better after a day or two. You can smell the cake when it is done in the steamer, the aroma is so sweet and lingers on in the kitchen....

- Full 100% recipe is as follows: 
  Ingredients A250g butter @room temp, 100g brown sugar; 
  Ingredients B6 eggs (300g); 
  Ingredients C (mix well)100g evaporated milk, 100g condensed milk, 125g horlicks, 125g kaya; 
  Ingredients D (sifted)185g plain flour, 1 tsp baking powder.

I am linking this post to Little Thumbs Up (Milk) organised by Bake for Happy KidsMy Little Favourite DIY and hosted by Tze of Awayofmind Bakery House at this link.

Friday, May 23, 2014

[Rice Cooker Challenge] - Rice Cooker Sweet Potato Buns with Kaya or Nutella Fillings (RCC #17)

I recently joined this very interesting baking/cooking fb group and we were all into rice cooker baking. Actually I was the culprit, I started it all, and suddenly there were so many fotos of rice cooker cakes (literally) flying around in that forum. Wendy, an active member and admin of the group, came up with a rice cooker purple sweet potato bun recipe and shared her results with the group. The original recipe was a bread machine recipe from Lisa. The foto of Wendy's fluffy rice cooker buns enticed me so much that I immediately made them the next day using orange sweet potatoes. I stuffed half of the buns with my homemade kaya and half of the rest with nutella spread. Due to the presence of sweet potatoes, the bun texture was better than Carol's rice cooker cheese bread. However the dough was really sticky and I had to knead it longer than the time stated in her recipe. 

Recipe adapted from Lisa Tok and Wendy Chun with thanks.

270g bread flour
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp caster sugar
1 tsp instant yeast
2 tbsp milk powder
85 ml cold water (use tap water)
150g purple sweet potatoes (steamed and mashed with fork and cooled down)
1 egg
45g butter

1. Place all ingredients except butter into mixing bowl. Beat on low speed using dough hook for about 5 min, then use medium speed to beat for another 10-15 min, till it is elastic to form dough. (I used my bread machine to knead the dough for 1 cycle of 20 min and still find it very sticky, so I let it knead an extra 5 min, total 25 min. On hindsight, it could be due to the fact that I did not strain the mashed sweet potatoes of excess water.)

2. Transfer dough to rice cooker to let it proof for 45 min in fermentation function, or until doubled in volume. (My Toshiba has no baking function and also no fermentation function. As the weather was pretty warm at 22 degrees outside, I covered the dough with greased clingwrap and let it proof outside for 1 hour. You can also place your dough in the rice cooker, turn on the "keep warm" mode for 15 min then turn it off, and let it proof for the rest of the time.)

3. Punch down the dough, and divide equally into small portions and add shrimp floss (ready-made Glory brand shrimp floss from supermart), knead it into small balls and place them in rice cooker. (The weight of the dough was about 650g, I divided it into 60 gram each. The dough was still quite sticky, so I had to flour my hands and the table top generously.) 

Before 2nd proofing
After 2nd proofing
4. Set fermentation function again and proof for another 15 to 20 min. After this proofing, change to baking function and bake for 45 min or until baked. (This time round, I used the keep warm function of both my rice cookers. The dough was too much to squeeze into my 5.5 cup Toshiba, so I placed 4 pieces into my Toshiba and 6 pieces into my 10-cup Cuckoo. After proofing, I pressed the "Cook" button on each rice cooker and let them cook for 40 to 45 min. My Cuckoo finished the 1st cycle in 18 min and I had to press "Cook" 3 times and abort it in the middle of the 3rd cycle when 40 min was up. For my Toshiba, I pressed "Cook" only twice, it finished the 1st cycle in 30 min and the 2nd cycle in 15 min, taking a total of 45 min.)

Buns in my 10-cup Cuckoo
Buns in my 5.5 cup Toshiba

- It's very strange but my Toshiba buns turned wrinkly immediately upon opening my rice cooker, whereas that from Cuckoo remained smooth. This was the 2nd time that this happened, since the Toshiba buns also turned wrinkly when I made Carol's cheese bread.
- These buns were softer and better in texture than Carol's cheese bread, partly due to the presence of sweet potatoes. However the texture didn't keep that well, and it is best to consume within the same day. I ate some the next day and it has turned a little harder.
- I like the combination of kaya fillings with sweet potato, and nutella with sweet potato, they really fit well together!

I am submitting this post to Rice Cooker Challenge #2 - What Else Can a Rice Cooker Do? hosted by myself, Miss B of Everybody Eats Well in Flanders.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

[RCC Challenge][RCC #16] - Coffee Butter Cake

This is a belated post of a rice cooker coffee butter cake which I did on the spur last Saturday. It was based on my RCC #5 steamed butter cake recipe. I have already posted the fotos and modifications not just on my FB page but also in a closed FB group last weekend and at least 3 ladies in that group have already tried and shown me their finished products, all given thumbs up. 

So I am now writing down the modifications in case it gets lost in the piles of recipes strewn all over my study table. :)

Recipe adapted from RCC #5 Steamed Butter Cake

3 eggs 
90g castor sugar (just nice, not too sweet)
140g cake flour, sifted (original recipe used superfine flour)
3/4 tsp baking powder (not present in original recipe)
1/2 tbsp ovalette
165g unsalted butter
2 tbsp condensed milk (v impt, not to be omitted)
3/4 tsp vanilla essence

* 1 tsp cocoa powder 
* 2 tbsp expresso coffee 
* 1/2 to 1 tsp coffee liquer 

* Modifications to make it a coffee butter cake:  
Add 1 tsp cocoa powder, 2 tbsp condensed milk (condensed milk already included above) and 1/2 to 1 tsp of coffee liquer to 2 tbsp expresso coffee, stir and mix well and add to step 2. )

1. Beat eggs, sugar (and ovalette if using) until it becomes thick and fluffy, about 2-3 min using cake-mixer on highest speed. Add in sifted flour and baking powder and mix well using spatula.

2. In a separate bowl, use cake-mixer to beat butter, condensed milk and coffee solution, and vanilla essence until fluffy.

3. Add in butter mixture into the egg mixture little by little and mix very briefly using cake-mixer on lowest speed. Do not over-mix.

4. Pour the cake batter into the lightly-greased rice cooker pot, press "COOK" and allow it to cook for 1 hour. (In my case, I pressed "COOK" 3 times. Each time my rice cooker has finished cooking, it will beep and automatically switch to "KEEP WARM" mode, so I just have to press "CANCEL" and press "COOK" again. It took me 29 min + 17 + 16 min = 62 min in total. This is a cake that works in a rice cooker without the cake baking function. Note that cooking time may vary based on the capacity of your rice cooker. Mine has a 5.5 cup capacity. )

- If there is no expresso coffee, you can add 2 tsp instant coffee powder to 2 tbsp hot water to get 2 tbsp coffee. 
- If there is no coffee liquer, you may add bailey's cream or coffee emulco instead, or completely omit it.
- The coffee flavour depends on the strength of the coffee you use. Adding 1 tsp of cocoa powder makes it mocha flavour. If you like, you can leave out the cocoa powder and make the coffee flavour stronger. The coffee solution makes the cake soft and moist, however do not add more than 3 tbsp of coffee solution to the batter, otherwise you run the risk of making the cake too wet. 

I am submitting this post to Rice Cooker Challenge #2 - What Else Can a Rice Cooker Do? hosted by myself, Miss B of Everybody Eats Well in Flanders.

Also linking this post to Little Thumbs Up (Milk) organised by Bake for Happy KidsMy Little Favourite DIY and hosted by Tze of Awayofmind Bakery House at this link.

Check out pictures of rice cooker coffee butter cakes submitted by readers in RCC Challenge #2, entries number 30 and 31.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Hokkaido Wholemeal Milk Loaf That Can Do Yoga (会做瑜珈的北海道全麦牛乳面包)

I initally wanted to make the title of this post "DDMT Hokkaido Wholemeal Milk Loaf". But I realised that not everybody knows what the acronym "DDMT" stands for, it means "Die Die Must Try". This is not standard English, this is Singlish (Singapore English). This bread is the cousin of Hokkaido Milk Loaf but it uses straight dough method instead of using tangzhong method. I have bookmarked this recipe for a very long time and it came in handy now since I need to get rid of my big bag of wholemeal flour.

This recipe produces a very very soft and fluffy wholemeal/whole wheat bread loaf, so soft that it can do yoga! I am not joking, just look at the picture above and you will know what I mean. It was slightly sweet but that was what made this wholemeal loaf bread so lovely. It weighed slightly more than 500g, and we finished it within 4 hours since we had the bread with tomato crevettes for dinner. My son was crazy about the simple wholemeal bread (liked by 1300 people on last time, I thought that recipe was quite good, but honestly this one is even better, this is probably a 10K recipe, when compared to the 5K starter dough recipe floating around in the blogosphe lately. ;p 

If you like wholemeal bread, and if you are tired of eating plastic bread (that's what my hubby calls all supermarket breads) that are not just yucky and plastic-ky and loaded with preservatives, then you have to try this recipe, die die must try, it is full of wholesome goodness! I have never said this before, not even for my Hokkaido Milk Loaf, but I will lay my head down for the chopping board (I dunno how I am gonna do that) if this bread doesn't taste nice. (Disclaimer: you have to be at least experienced in making some other breads before you try this, because this bread is not just any other bread.) 

Recipe adapted from Little Corner of Mine with thanks!

Ingredients for a 600+ gram loaf
270g wholemeal flour
30g cake flour
2.5 tbsp milk powder (Nestle low-fat milk powder)
40g sugar
0.5 tsp 3/4 tsp or 4.5g salt **
1 tsp 1.67 tsp or 5g instant yeast **
1 large egg beaten (60g)
125g fresh milk (can reduce the milk by 15g to 110g**)
75g heavy whipping cream (using Colruyt "Boni" brand 35% opklopbare room)

** based on another round of testing, advised to increase salt to 3/4 tsp (4.5g) and instant yeast to 1 + 2/3 tsp (5g), and reduce the milk to 110g for better height.  **

1. Put everything into your bread machine and press "Sweet" mode, "Light" crust, and "700g". Each BM is different so choose the options according to your BM. (My Primo bread machine has indicated it will take 2h 50 min.  However note that you should choose "Light" crust instead of "Medium" or "Dark" since the crust turned out to be nicely brown and crispy even though I chose "Light".)

2a. If you don't like to use BM for baking, choose the "Dough" function, remove it when kneading is completed (you need at least 30 - 35 min of kneading), grease your hands and shape it round, cover with greased clingwrap or damp kitchen towel and let it proof 2 times for 1 hour each or until doubled in volume. After the 1st proofing, punch down the dough to release air, shape it round, cover and proof a 2nd time for another 1 hour. Then bake in a greased bread pan or 450g pullman loaf pan and place in preheated oven at 340F / 170C for 40 min or until it turns golden brown. The bread should be placed one shelf lower than the middle shelf so that the top of the bread reaches the middle height of the oven.

2b. If you don't have a BM, you can use a stand-mixer with dough hook to knead for 35 to 40 min. And follow the instructions as per step 2a.

How the dough looked like after kneading for 35 min by BM.

After 2nd proofing, just before BM started baking.

- This dough is very wet and sticky, hence it's impossible to knead 100% by hand. When shaping the dough after kneading using mixer, grease your hands and try not to flour too much. Adding extra flour will make the bread less soft. I did not add any extra flour since I used BM from start to end.

- If you are using BM to knead, remember to scrap the sides of the BM bowl using a rubber spatula to make sure all the ingredients are nicely incorporated into the dough. Same goes for stand-mixer.

- Unlike the Hokkaido Milk Loaf, you don't have to knead this wholemeal loaf until it passes the window pane stage but you have to knead very long. 

The milk, whipped cream and egg should be at room temperature if you are using stand-mixer. If you are using BM, it's not necessary since the BM generates sufficient heat to warm up the ingredients during kneading but I did warm up my milk (cold from the fridge) briefly in microwave just to be on safe side.

- If you are using delayed timer function in BM, make sure you set the sugar, salt and yeast apart and don't mix them together, the yeast should also be separated from the liquid ingredients with a barrier of flour because you want the yeast to stay dry until the machine starts its cycle. It doesn't matter if you are using the BM right away.

Good to know:
 bread machine baking tips from King Arthur Flour

Freshly baked from my bread machine!
My Primo bread machine

I am submitting this post to YeastSpotting.


In Oct 2014, I asked my friend, Sally Teo, to help me test out the improved recipe with some minor changes - 4.5g salt, 5g instant yeast and milk reduced by 15g to 110g. Here is the results - nice, tall and fluffy wholemeal loaf. Thank you Sally for your help! 

Thursday, May 15, 2014

[RIce Cooker Challenge] - Carol's Rice Cooker Cheese Bread (Carol老师的电饭锅乳酪面包) (RCC #15)

Buns cooked in my Toshiba (left) and Cuckoo (right) rice cookers.

I finally picked up courage to make my very first rice cooker bread! Aren't they beautiful? They were cooked in 2 different rice cookers!

Actually this is not my 1st attempt on this bread recipe. I did it one day earlier and it failed because I under-kneaded and under-proofed the dough. Thinking of using only my Toshiba 5.5 cup cooker, I halved the dough, only kneaded for 8 min. Great mistake. Dough didn't rise, plus the fact that I turned on the keep warm mode for 5 min and switched it off, letting the dough proof inside the rice cooker pot for 1 hour, that didn't work for me, at least not under the cold weather in Belgium.

Buns cooked in my Cuckoo (left) and Toshiba (right) rice cookers.

But I didn't give up. I have seen how nice the bread turned out both in Carol's blog and in Charmaine's blog, so I decided to give it another shot. So for the 2nd time, I used the full recipe, kneaded for 30 min using bread machine and proofed first in the enclosed oven for 1 hour with the lowest heat switched on. For the 2nd proofing, I used the rice cooker to proof for 1 hour with the the "keep warm" mode switched on for the first 30 min.

Instead of using cheddar cheese, I used belgian cheese as filling, they were very yummy! Look at the texture of the buns, can you believe they were cooked in the rice cooker(s)? See the foto above, the ones on the left with markings on top (markings due to my cake rack) with the top part facing up were cooked inside my Toshiba 5.5 cup rice cooker, while the ones on the right with the bottom crust facing up were cooked inside my Cuckoo 10 cup pressure rice cooker.

See my Toshiba buns were smooth upon opening the rice cooker, but they turned wrinkly very soon if you look at the collage, I dunno why. The wrinkles were not due to water dripping back, they were due to exposure to cold air, I think. I didn't have the same problem with my Cuckoo buns. I suspect my Toshiba buns were over-proofed and too airy and fluffy as compared to my Cuckoo buns, reason being my Toshiba is a smaller cooker and the buns inside have contact with the walls of the pot, they were snug and cosy inside and hence they rose better. Does it make sense, I think it does. :p

Btw, these buns were finished by the next morning, so do I have to say more? I am gonna upload the instructions in English and more pix later, stay tuned. :)

For the recipe (in traditional chinese), you can refer to Carol老师的电饭锅乳酪面包. Big thanks to my "teacher" Carol ! 中文食谱请参阅 Carol老师的电饭锅乳酪面包, 谢谢老师的无私分享 ! =)

I am submitting this rice cooker cheese bread to "Rice Cooker Cake Challenge #2 - What Else Can a Rice Cooker Do?" hosted by myself, Miss B of Everybody Eats Well in Flanders.

Also linking this post to Little Thumbs Up (Milk) organised by Bake for Happy Kids, My Little Favourite DIY and hosted by Tze of Awayofmind Bakery House at this link.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Boerenappelcake / Farmer's Apple Cake

Last weekend we were invited to a friend's house for a BBQ party. Being invited as guests, it is only polite that you bring something for the hosts, be it flowers, chocolates or wine/beer (usually it is chocolates for the lady and beer for the gentleman since we live in the land of chocolates, beers and waffles). As usual, I offer to bake some cakes for dessert, and I took this as a good opportunity to practise baking new cake recipes. So I picked a butter cake recipe which I saw on FB and that turned out to be really disastrous, my worst butter cake ever. I started baking at 10+ pm and by midnight I knew that the butter cake would be going to the chickens for their tea party so I would have to bake another 2 cakes before 3am. :(
Foto taken at 12 midnight in my dimly-lit kitchen.

That was when this boerenappelcake (farmer's apple cake) recipe came to mind. I could not afford to make any mistakes anymore , since it was already midnight, and if it didn't work out, we would have to rush to the bakery the next morning to buy a cake. I did 2 cakes in tandem, one in the oven and another fail-proof moist chocolate cake in the rice cooker to save time, and luckily I managed to finish both before 2am. 

Thank god this cake was a saviour, I couldn't slice and taste it at home, so I had to wait with bated breath to hear the verdict from the guests at my friend's BBQ party. I got a "dikke duim" (fat thumbs up) from all the belgian and dutch guests present at the party.
Finally managed to steal a shot of the cake while everybody was not looking, hehe.

So here is the boerenappelcake (farmer's apple cake) translated from Dutch into English. Adapted from Caroline Brouwer originally from the book "Appeltaart" by Janneke Philipi

200g unsalted butter at room temp
200g + 25g sugar
3 eggs
200g plain flour (I used patisserie flour)
10g (2 tsp) baking powder
3 tbsp milk
2 to 3 sweet apples for eating (I used 2 jonagold apples) *
1 tsp ground cinnamon
icing sugar (optional)

* In Belgium, they do differentiate between apples for eating (handappels) and apples for making apple mousse (moesappels).

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius with both top and bottom heat and grease a 18 x 28 cm (7 x 11 inch) brownie pan and line the sides with baking paper that hangs over the sides.

2. Whisk in the stand-mixer or hand-mixer butter with 200g sugar and a little salt until soft and creamy. Beat in the eggs one by one.

3. Sieve the flour with baking powder over the mixing bowl and mix at low speed until the batter is smooth. Finally mix in the milk. Pour the batter into the lined pan and smooth out the dough. (I switched to using the hand whisk so that I could have better control.)

4. Peel the apples and remove the core, cut them into small cubes and toss them with 25g sugar and 1 tsp ground cinnamon. Sprinkle the apple cubes over the batter. (Do not press the apples into the batter otherwise the cake would become dense.)

5. Bake the apple cake in the preheated oven for about 40 min or until golden brown. Let the cake cool down in the cake pan. Sprinkle icing power generously over it and cut the cake into 8 to 10 blocks. (I was afraid the cake would brown too quickly just like my failed butter cake so I placed the cake pan 1 shelf lower than the middle shelf so that the top of the cake was at the centre, and I baked for 40 min at 180C, then I moved the cake 1 shelf higher to the middle shelf and left it bake for another 10 min until golden brown. You could just bake on the middle shelf right from the start but towards the end cover the cake loosely with aluminium foil if it is browning too fast. )

I initially wanted to reduce the total amount of sugar but I did not as this was meant for guests, and not for our own consumption, so the sweeter the better. I thought the sweetness was ok, it was not extremely sweet. I intentionally omitted the icing sugar on top, otherwise that would really be a sugar overload. This cake was really nice and moist, everybody liked it. This cake is highly recommended, a recipe I would keep for the future.

I love apple cakes, so if you have a good recipe to share, pls leave me a comment, thank you!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

40 Minute Bread Rolls

Today is Wednesday and every Wednesday is half-day till 11.30am for His Majesty (my 5 year old son). I woke up, had my breakfast and started thinking what to cook for lunch for both of us, then I remember seeing a 40 minute bun recipe (some say 30 minutes but that is a bit far-fetched) which went viral in a closed facebook group. It seems a lot of people are making buns following that recipe so I decided to check it out.

I didn't really time how long I took to make this bread, but if you calculate the total time taken, it should take you 15 min (activating the yeast) + 5 min (kneading by machine or by hand) + 10 min (proofing the dough) + 10 to 12 min (baking), a total of 40 min. Well, this is not inclusive of the time taken to divide and shape the dough. In fact, I spent the most time dividing the dough, weighing each piece and shaping them round. I must admit I am a control freak because I need to weigh everything so that each piece weighs the same. ;p

So I woke up, had my breakfast, made the dough, put it in the oven, the buns came out of the oven and my 3-month-old cutie pie was still fast asleep. It wasn't even 10am yet. Was I super-efficient or just plain lucky to have such a wonderful baby? :p

Recipe adapted from Domestic Goddess Wannabe

Ingredients (makes 12 buns)
1 cup + 2 tbsp warm water (280ml)
1/3 cup oil (83ml)
2 tbsp active dry yeast or instant yeast (16g)
1/4 cup sugar (56g)
1.5 tsp salt (9g)
1 egg
3.5 cup (476g) of bread flour (you can use all-purpose flour too but bread flour is preferred)

1. Preheat oven to 220C or 428F.

2. Combine water, oil, yeast and sugar in a bread machine bowl (big mixing bowl if you are kneading by hand), mix well and allow it to rest for 15 min. (Do not add salt at this time, otherwise it will kill the yeast.)

3. After 15 min, the batter would become foamy. Add in salt, egg and bread flour. Knead with dough hook until it forms a smooth dough which comes away from the sides of the bowl. The dough will still be a little bit sticky. This will take around 3 to 5 min if you knead using bread machine. If you are kneading by hand, just knead for 5 min will do. If it is too wet, add a little flour and knead a few times more. (Do not over-knead as this is a quick bread.)

4. Divide dough into 12 equal portions, shape each into a ball and place in a greased 9 x 13 inch pan, cover with greased clingwrap or damp kitchen towel and allow to proof for about 10 min in a warm draught-free place. (I did not use a 9 x 13 inch pan but I used the oven tray instead. My dough weighed 888g, divide by 12 makes about 70 to 75g per piece. Note that you should not proof for >10 min as this is a quick bread, it will become hard if you over-proof.)

5. After proofing, brush each bun with egg wash (1 egg beaten with few drops of water) and bake for 10 to 12 min on the middle shelf until golden brown. (I baked mine for 10 min only.)

Notes This 40-min bun or bread roll was really quick and easy, and the taste was pretty good too, they were fragrant and soft, although I think they were not as soft and fluffy as sweet bread dough or hokkaido milk bread, but still given the short time, the result was already quite good. This kind of soft bun is what we called a "sandwich" in Belgium. We finished 10 buns for lunch and there are still 2 left for tomorrow. I will let you know how it tastes like tomorrow, if I managed to get up in time before the rest. :p

I am submitting this post to YeastSpotting.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Rice Cooker Cake Challenge #2 - What Else Can a Rice Cooker Do?

[Pls click HERE for the Roundup for Rice Cooker Challenge #2].

For those of you who have not heard of our Rice Cooker Cake Challenge #1 or who have not had time to participate in it previously, here is another challenge issued to you for the month of May.

Besides being able to bake cakes, the humble rice cooker is capable of baking breads as well. You don't believe? Just google "rice cooker bread" or "baking bread in rice cooker" and you will see lots of experiments on rice cooker bread baking. Baking breads in the rice cooker may not be the most ideal way of baking breads, since the breads baked in a rice cooker may have a slightly spongy texture and doesn't produce a nice crispy crust. But if you never try, you never know, right?

So, are you game for it? Are you interested to know what else a rice cooker can do?

1) What to bake?
For the 2nd challenge, you are encouraged to bake/cook rice cooker cakes, breads, or even cookies and share your experience online with everybody. For starters, you are advised to first read the FAQ - How to Make Cakes in a Rice Cooker before you start. You may also wish to refer to the Roundup for Rice Cooker Cake Challenge #1, or click on the label "Baking with Rice Cooker" on my blog for some inspiration. Currently I have baked 14 RCC so I am up to RCC #14, just search RCC #1 to RCC #14 on my blog. You can also go to my facebook page where I regularly upload the photos of RCC submitted by readers.

If you still have no idea where to start looking for recipes, drop me an email and I will provide you my secret list of rice cooker baking recipes which is enough for you to keep yourself busy for 1 month or even 1 year, haha. Note that I will only send you the list if you show genuine interest in participating in this challenge. Sharing is caring, right? :)

2) Who can join?
Anybody, whether you have a blog or not, as long as you fulfill the requirements:
- If you have a blog, just blog it and link it to my blog. 
- If you don't have a blog, you can email the photo and recipe to me.
- If you don't have a blog but you have facebook, you can email the photo and recipe to me, and at the same time share it on your facebook and link it to my facebook and my blog. I would appreciate if you can press the "like" button to like my facebook page.

Just email your recipe with the title "RCC Challenge #2" and send to everybodyeatswell[at]gmail[dot]com in the following format:
- Your name or nickname: 
- Your blog name (omit this if you do not have a blog):
- Name of your RCC:
- URL of your post (pls do not give your homepage url):
- URL or attachment of your photo (one photo for each entry):
(If you are attaching a photo in your email, pls limit the photo size to 500kb).

3) How to join?
Step 1 : 
Make a rice cooker cake, bread or cookies between now and 31 May 2014. You may submit more than 1 entry.

Step 2 :
Post it in your blog between now and 31 May 2014
Your post must include the recipe or link to the original recipe. If you are using a recipe from a book, pls include the title and author of the book. 
(Any entries that are posted outside the date range will not be accepted.
Any entries that do not include a recipe or link to the original recipe will not be accepted.)

Step 3 :
Pls share your experience by indicating
the brand and model of your rice cooker, and the capacity (3 cups, 5.5 cups, 8 cups or 10 cups);
how long you took and which function you used, "Cook" or "Bake" function;
did you make any other changes to the recipe (for eg. reduce sugar, add chocolate chips, use oil instead of butter, doubled the recipe)
(Any entries that do not include the sharing of experience will not be accepted.)

Step 4 : Please mention that you are submitting your post to 
"Rice Cooker Cake Challenge #2 - What Else Can a Rice Cooker Do?" hosted by Miss B of Everybody Eats Well in Flanders and provide a link back to this post HERE.
(Any entries that do not include the above link will not be accepted.)

If this is the first time you hear about rice cooker cakes, why not take this as a challenge to try out your first rice cooker cake? I look forward to all participating entries! :)

I have another short announcement to make. I have made a resolution to go through all my recipe books and bake some recipes from my own books instead of scouring the internet for recipes and leaving them neglected and covered in dust. I shall call these recipes "My Treasured Recipes" as these are recipe books lugged all the way from Singapore to Belgium. As a start, I will be pairing up with Mimi Bakery House and we will be baking Alex Goh bread and cake recipes in the month of June and July. So if you like Alex Goh's recipes, do mark the dates in your calendar and join us in the blog hop. More details to come later...

Print Button


Related Posts with Thumbnails