January 27, 2010

Raisin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ok I realized I haven't been baking or cooking ever since I have gone back to work from my maternity leaves. And I realized that some of my cooking posts from last year have not been uploaded to my original life blog as well. So... I'll cheat. I'll post some of my unposted bakes from last year here instead. :P

First up...2009 Nov 23. I decided to try a simple cookie recipe from HHB's site. It looked easy enough and was supposed to be the fundamental cookie thing. The real basic one.

In the end, my cookies didn't turned out as wonderful as I would liked it to be. I believed my butter melted too fast and chilling it in the fridge did not helped much. Nevertheless, they were addictive...or I was simply greedy.

Raisin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adatped from HHB's Drop Cookies
115g butter, softened
115g caster sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
175g plain flour
175g plain or semisweet chocolate chips
50g raisins

  1. Preheat oven to 180degC. Line baking trays with parchment paper.
  2. With a wooden spoon or electric mixer, cream butter and sugar in a mixing bowl until the mixture turns pale and fluffy.
  3. Beat in the egg gradually. Mix well after each addition. Add in vanilla extract, mix well.
  4. Sift the flour over the mixture, fold in with wooden spoon or a spatula. Fold in the chocolate chips.
    If you think that your butter has melted too fast, chill the mixture in the fridge for at least an hour.
  5. Drop tablespoonfuls of the cookie dough onto the prepared baking tray. Leave some space between the cookies to allow for spreading. Flatten each cookie dough slightly with the back of a fork, keeping the shape as even as possible.
  6. Bake for 10 mins or until golden. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

January 26, 2010

I've Got An Award

Yeps! Just 2 posts and I've received a blog award! Here you go.. TADAH!

Ok, it's nothing to boast about since I really didn't do much. Only posted some comments on Wendy's blog (Table for 2.... or more). She's the one who taught me how to bake a chiffon cake after my two failed attempts. Her pics were so wonderful that I actually succeeded after reading her post. Since then, I have tried a few recipes there and they were good! She can even CREATE her own recipe. Cool! She's so kind to pass this award to me as well. Hehee...

Come to think of it, now I am stressed. Like her, I realized I didn't have a lot of friends who blog. Or that many blogs that I frequent or post my comments to. But now that I have received this award, I shall now also reveal the few food blogs and of course some friends' blogs that I frequent but seldom leave a comment.

Of course, there is the pressure in me not to break the award "chain" (yeah it feels like a chain letter. :P) but I think more importantly for me, it's to thank these bloggers for being such an inspiration to my life. Thanks again bloggers!

Here goes the award procedures:

Having the picture of the award posted onto your blog, one should
  • Share the 10 things in life that make you happy with your readers
  • Pass on the award to 10 other bloggers who brighten up your day
  • Share the links to the 10 bloggers', as mentioned above, on your blog
  • Get the 10 bloggers informed about the award
  • Ask the 10 award recipients to relink their blogs to yours.

10 things in life that make me happy

  1. My baby boy! Especially when I am greeted with a big smile or giggles from my baby the instance he saw me. Oh.. so sweeet.
  2. When I receive sincere compliments.. hehe.. downright shallow. Actually insincere ones also works for me sometimes.. hahaha. waaaay downright shallow.
  3. Holidays with my hubby... this is before the kid appear. Not sure how holidays will be with the kid in toll in future.
  4. Shopping... only when I found good inexpensive stuff that I can buy in bulk (> 5 in quantity). E.g. my recent trip to Zara. 6 pieces at a go.
  5. Drinks with buddies. Yeah I am a alcoholic anonymous. I just love to drink.
  6. Dining in cushy poshy lux-feeling environment. The atahs feeling. Best if the bill is being picked up by someone else.
  7. When people lap up my food. So far my record's not very good for this. Best supporter has to go to my hubby for now.
  8. Reading an interesting book (e.g. Freakonomics, Outliers, Road Less Travelled etc) with jazz or loungy music playing in the background.
  9. Chit chatting with my hubby... especially about our boy.
  10. Last but not least, hanging out with like-minded friends. :D

I'd like to pass this award to
  1. Hugbear from Baking Mum

    • I started reading her blog and got interested in baking. No joke.

  2. HHB from Happy Home Baking

    • She showed me that baking can be easy. She's so hardworking, often checking out and reading on details before she embarks on a new recipe. Her tips were wonderful!

  3. Evan from Evan's Kitchen Ramblings

    • I got the No-bake Oreo Cheesecake recipe from her. She also opened me to a world of macarons. Check out the pics on her blog!

  4. Florence from Do What I Like

    • My Tangzhong master. I succeeded first try thanks to her clear instructions.

  5. Small Small Baker

    • Just started reading her blog. Tried the Coffee Chiffon. Unfortunately my eggs weren't stiff enough. Failed twice. I will try again!

  6. Aunty Yochana

    • She's another amazing baker. Sadly, not all recipes are available. Her cakes are pretty.

  7. Angie of Angie's Recipe

    • The way she lined up the pictures is very good. I will decode and learn to do it one of these days.

  8. Let's Get Wokking

    • Her Chinese dishes are simply restaurant-like. Envy her family. My aspiration.
    • She's so talented that she has a craft blog, a sewing blog etc.

    These are non-food blogs: 

  9. A Husband's Voice

    • My regular read into a man's mind!

  10. Shups

    • A cool friend who started her Project 365. I am following her everyday. Stalker!

January 16, 2010

Raisin & Chocolate Chips Muffins

This has to be the first item I baked this year if I recall correctly. The opening item of the year was supposed to be a chiffon cake but I simply did not have the courage to beat the eggs to the right "stiffness" when I woke up this morning. After much deliberation and hunger, I chose a supposedly easy recipe from HHB's site - Raisins & Chocolate Chips Muffins.

It seemed easy enough, just whipped everything in a saucepan, into the paper cups and out of my easily overheated oven in 20 minutes. Since I do not have muffin cups or tins at the moment, with only cupcake paper cups, I ended up with cupcake looking muffins instead.

No lunch for me in the end after woofing down 2 muffins (Hubby had 2 in the morning as well) and 2 more for me at tea break. In the end, Hubby was happy, I was happy. :D

As a note to self, the next time I'm doing this, I'm going to add a bit more butter to give them more moisture and definitely less sugar as I can't take sweet stuff too well.

Oh, this recipe goes very very well with a nice cup of English tea on a cool afternoon.

Recipe: (makes 6 cupcake sized muffins) 
Adapted from HHB. I halved everything.

125g plain flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup chocolate chips
1/4 cup raisins (I used 1/2 cup raisins instead)
1/2 egg, beaten (I followed HHB and omitted this. Haha.)
30g unsalted butter, melted
80ml milk
60g sugar

Method (The Lazy Method):
  1. Pre-heat oven to 180degC.
  2. Melt butter in a saucepan, over low heat, set aside to cool.
  3. Place egg, melted butter, milk and sugar in another bowl.
    Mix until thoroughly combined. (I did it in the saucepan)
  4. Sieve together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a mixing bowl.
  5. Add chocolate chips, raisins and mix with a spatula. Make a well in the centre.
    (I sieved the ingredients and added the choco chips & raisins in the saucepan again, see step 3)
  6. Pour the liquid mixture into the flour. With the spatula, gently fold all the ingredients to form a wet batter. Just mix until the flour are incorporate into the batter. DO NOT over mix.
  7. Spoon batter into paper muffin cups. Bake for 15~20mins (mine took almost 25mins) until muffins turn golden brown or a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  8. Let them cool on a wire rack.

January 14, 2010

New Idea

As always, when the new year begins, I have a new idea.
In fact, I have many many odd ideas all through the year as reminded by my husband.

This year, my new idea is to create a cooking blog.

Ever since my maternity leave, I have been baking, cooking and re-creating recipes after recipes from all the blogs I've read. Thanks to them, I have now enjoyed cooking and baking so much more. So, why not start one of my own and share the many recipes I have found, tried and tested with everyone as well?

I could have simply tap on to my current motherhood-blog and simply add the cooking stuff in there. However, I realized that this doesn't quite promote a good sharing of recipes without reading through all my life moments. When you want to cook or bake something, you kind of want to just get down to it instead of scrolling through pages of life details isn't it?

So here it is... a memo of all my cooking adventures.
A toast. To a new year of more home-cooked food and new ideas to come. :D