Monday, April 28, 2008

Double Chocolate Muffin

Still in the chocolate mood and some left over ganache on hand, I modified Sarah's Moulton Secret Mix In Muffin's recipe from to create this sinful muffins :).

1 cup plain flour, sifted
1/2 cup cocoa powder, sifted
1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsulted butter, melted
1 cup sour cream
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

1 cup small choco chips or left over ganache (about 50-100 gr)

1. On a bowl, mix butter with sour cream, egg and vanilla, beat lightly until well incorporated
2. Then pour in to the dry ingredients and fold lightly until all incorporated
3. Fold in choco chips/ganache until evenly spread
4. Pour equally to 12pc muffin pan
5. Baked on 400F for about 20 min

Served: warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream on the side

** Tips: if you're using ganache, make sure you watch the oven to prevent your muffin to explode :)

Chocolate Fudge Cake with Ganache Icing

I was craving for something chocolatey this weekend. So I'm came across 1 recipe from the text book for Le Cordon Bleu which I found very easy to do and the result was satisfying.

Fudge Cake

160 gr Unsweetened chocolate
160 gr butter
200 gr eggs
200 gr sugar
40 gr bread flour

1. Melt chocolate and butter, set aside
2. Beat egg and sugar in high speed until light and fluffy
3. Add in melted chocolate and fold in 1 directin with spatula
4. Add in flour, fold until well mix
5. Baked in 175C for 20-30 minutes
6. Set it to cool on the cooling rack for icing

Ganache icing

100 gr heavy cream
20 gr sugar
20 gr glucose
100 gr dark chocolate

1. Heat the cream, sugar and glucose to the point of boiling and take it off from the stove
2. Stir in chocolate until all melt and well blended

To set: pour the ganache over the cake and smooth it over with pallate knife

** Tips: store the left over ganache for chocolate muffin

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Chicken 'Noodle' Soup

I've been craving for chicken noodle soup from QFC (people might say what the...? but it's one my comfort food couple years back, eaten together with corn bread will make you full for the rest of the day). Alas, I can't make the corn bread since I can't find any place that sell cornmeal flour in Singapore. But, at least I still can make the soup, I sub the 'noodle' with elbow pasta.
500 gr chicken breast, cubed (I like boneless and skinless, but you might want to buy the ones with skin to make the soup more 'hearthy' -- the nice way to say fatty)
1/2 bunch of celery, cubed
350 gr carrot, cubed
1 big onion, cubed
Olive oil
Seasoning: bay leaf, marjoram, thyme, pepper, sugar, salt
Elbow pasta, boiled and drenched
Sauté onion with olive oil in the big soup pan in medium high until soft. Add celery, carot and seasoning and cook it until half done.
Pour in about 1L to 1.25L water and bring to boil. Let it simmer for about another 20 minutes and add the chicken. Simmer in low heat for another 20 minutes.
To serve, place elbow pasta on the soup bowl and pour down the soup

Eggless Scones

I found this great tea cakes book from the library. The title is 'Tea-time Recipes' by Jane Pettigrew. Tried one of the scones recipe and the results is delightful and off course, very easy to make. The scones is light and you can cut the dough into triangle shape like what I did instead using the round cutter and you have mini scones for your munches :) The recipe is from the book itself as follow (I omit the other scale of measurements):

350 gr self-raising flour, sifted

50 gr margarine, softened (I sub the margarine and lard with butter)

50 gr lard, softened

100-115ml milk

Preheat the oven to 190C. Grease 2 baking trays. Rub the fats into the flour, working as quickly and lighty as possible with cold hands. Add enough milk to give a soft, bread-like dough. On a floured board, roll out to a thickness of 1.5cm and cut into rounds with 6cm cutter. Place on the prepared trays and bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden and well risen. Remove from the oven and lift on to a wire rack to cool.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Zettai Kareshi ~ Dorama

Zettai Kareshi is now airing on Fuji TV. The first episode is already uploaded in Youtube (but not yet fan-subbed). Zettai Kareshi is an adaptation based on manga with the same title by Yuu Watase. Here is the link to read the manga online. The dorama is a josei version of the manga which is more suitable (in my opinion) considering that the manga is about high school girl named Rikko with the robot boyfriend from the 'night' series and his first word is 'ecchi shiyou'. I think I need to reread the manga to refresh my memory wakaka... I like the manga version and have a good feeling about this drama as not so many good drama to watch lately... So, otanoshimi :)

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Fried Wonton

This weekend I thought of making something fried for a change and the first thing that I come up is Fried Wonton, so Fried Wonton indeed.

2 bunch vermicelli, soaked and chopped
250 gr minced chicken
1 bunch spring onion, small chopped
1 pack wonton skin (about 40-50 pc)
2 tbsp corn flour
Seasoning: pepper, salt, sugar, dried chili

1 egg for egg wash
5 cloves garlic
Fish sauce

In a bowl, mix chicken and corn flour until well mixed, then add pepper, salt, sugar and dried chili, mix well.
In a pan, sauté garlic until fragrant and add chicken (make sure the chicken turn to small pieces by chop it up w/ spatula – careful not to break your pan), then add in vermicelli and spring onion. Add fish sauce and bit more seasoning to taste. Cook until all well done. Set aside to cool.
For egg wash, beat the egg in the small bowl and add about 2 tbsp of water.
Place wonton skin on your palm and take about 1.5 tsp of the filling in the center and seal sides w/ egg wash. Repeat the process.
Deep fry the wontons in medium high heat.
Serve hot with chili sauce (any kinds, but I find sweet Thai chili sauce do the job well).

Monday, April 14, 2008

Cross Dressing Maid Cafe

This is old news in the Otaku’s world but I’m sure there are people like me out there somewhere and this definitely only can be done in Japan. The latter statement is something that you must keep in mind. I think most of you are aware about maid café. Originated from Japan, maid café is first set up to satisfy the need of Japanese otakus’ fantasy of having cute maids (resurfacing in live action based on their favorite anime and manga) serving them tea and cakes. This business is very lucrative considering it rings cash register of 2 billion dollars per annum (based on the news I just heard on TV and I’m still amazed on how this niche industry can churn this much amount of money).

Never mind about this, what makes me itch to post this is the twist that they come out with this maid café theme. Now in 2008, they have
cross dressing maid café (the article is in Japanese, but you just need to see the pics to know what I mean). That’s right, now they’re dressing up pretty guys (those bishounen) in maid costume to serve you tea and cakes. Click this link if you’re still not sure what I’m talking about. This is definitely a heaven for those otakus out there in Japan where cross dressing is apparently nothing to be ashamed of and even considered funny and kawaii. You can see this phenomenon from their drama (eg. Princess Princess D and Hana Kimi are a few out of many out there) and variety shows (eg. SMAPxSMAP), even SMAP are happily doing the cross dressing act every now and then in their own variety show (check this link, where Shingo immitates Paris Hilton). What made me even want to laugh when I saw the news is that in the café, they even sell the pics of the maids so that you can stare your favorite maid’s face all the time outside the café muahaha… yes, this is only can happen in Japan.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Bird Nest Soup

I purposely purchased a slow cooker to make this soup (you can also call it a dessert, either way is fine). Bird nest is a delicacy. I like it because it tastes good. After cooked, it’ll look like lumps of transparent chewy gel, and it’ll just slip and melt directly to your throat. It’s presumed to have lots of health benefit, but the ones that I believe it’s true is that by consuming it regularly, you’ll see your skin will look more radiant and you’ll stay healthy till your old age (I have seen the evidences). I like the one that I had when I was in HK 3 years ago. They added Gingko Nuts and Dried Longan. So, I try out my version and here it is:

2 pc medium bird nest (soak 4-5 hours in water)
1 pack Gingko nuts
2 bar honey brown sugar
10 slice US ginseng (if you have the thinner slices, use more)
500 ml water

In the slow cooker bowl, put in bird nest, Gingko nuts brown sugar follow by water and bring to boil on the stove (you can use slow cooker directly but it’ll take 2 hours to boil) then transfer the bowl to the slow cooker and add in the ginseng. Let it stand for about 2.5 hours.
Best served cold, although it’s soothing to eat it warm.

You also can add on Honey dates on top of Gingko nuts but you must reduce the honey brown sugar in return and add more ginseng will add deeper flavor in your soup.

Vanilla Blueberry Crumb Cake

I made this cake yesterday and the result is quite nice, the only downside is that mine was a bit bloated for what they call it crumble. But, nevertheless, it tastes good with soft texture (I like this kind of outcome) and it's not so sweet. The recipe itself is from 'Chocolate & Vanilla' by Gale Gand. So here's the recipe copied over from the book:
2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup sour cream
1 large egg
1 tsp pur vanilla extract
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 pint blueberries

Preheat the oven to 350F. Butter and flour a 9’ square cake pan or line it with parchment paper and set it aside.

In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine 1 ½ cups of the flour, the granulated sugar, brown sugar, and butter on low speed until the mixture is blended and starts to forms clumps. Set aside 1 cup of the mixture to use for the crumb topping.
In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream egg, vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, and salt until combined. Stir in the remaining ½ cup flour, then scrape this mixture into the mixer and beat on medium speed until it forms a smooth batter. Spread it into the prepared cake pan. Sprinkle the blueberries over the batter, press them down a little and then sprinkle with the reserved crumb topping.

Bake for 40 minutes or until the cake is form to the touch and a skewer or toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the pan set on the cooling rack.

Thursday, April 10, 2008


Well, you can consider this as travel if you have to sit in the car for almost 3 hours to reach Puncak from Sukabumi then another 2 hour to reach Jakarta..... Your spine breaks along the trip too if you don't make some stops. And we did stop at this spot in the picture. Gotta tell you Indonesia is blessed with beautiful sceneries such as this. But alas, the people can't be bothered to take care of the nature. Below the sightseeing podium is pile of trash that will ruin your mood when you notice it. So sad and infuriating how this locals treat their own natural assets and literally destroy it in the greater speed nowadays.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Amuzing Stuff on Youtube

Inspired from my bro's posting on his blog, I happily browsed some more of the amuzing clips and found lots of parodies for Gundam'00. So many people dedicated the parody for this anime proofing how popular Gundam is. Also how hilarious those cool anime characters turn into in those parody. I admire how much work those guys put into to make these parodies, some of them are even full animated. Some of my favorites are:

This one is from Ending of Kodomo no Jikan

This one is from Saiyuki, they really make it exactly the same as the original Saiyuki but too bad it's not full, think coz it's getting too difficult haha, but definitely very amuzing...

The funniest, Gundam 00 version of Hare Hare Yukai, LOL...

They also have the ones that might give you 'Kimochi ga warui' feeling coz there are also from Sailor Moon, Rose of Versailles (They do the illustration of Gundamm 00 character, Versailles style ~ big and glittery eyes LOL) (these are just seem wrong but off course definitely amuzing).

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

ラブ★コン ~ Lovely Complex

Lovely Complex is one of the cutest movie based on manga with the same title by Aya Nakahara. The anime version is also available and more to details compare to the movie. The story is about Koizumi Risa (Ema Fujisawa) and Atsushi Ohtani (Teppei Koike). They’re called All Hanshin Kyojin, a popular comedy duo in Japan due to their spontaneous act. Somewhere in the middle, Risa starts to fall for Ohtani. But, Ohtani being a very super dense guy always causes Risa to cry and giving up on her love for Ohtani. You’ll be rooting for Risa all the way through both the movie and anime. Her determination on getting back on track from every down moment (caused by yours truly Ohtani) and her frustration moments will move your heart and also amuse you. The cuteness and hilarious moments will definitely make you smile and laugh throughout the movie. The anime is quite lengthy (well, the manga is 17 volume, so can’t be cut too much) and you may find the drama of Koizumi and Ohtani is getting draggy in the middle (this will make you want to strangle Ohtani). But, you’ll never get tired watching this cute couple. Definitely a must watch for the cuteness and off course, the Kanzai dialect.