April ’12: Apple Cinnamon Muffins & Chocolate Easter Egg

Apple Cinnamon Muffins

Chocolate Easter Egg

March ’12: Ginger Sparkles

I burnt half a batch of cookies 😯 for the first time in my life……..

Hate my oven settings…… 😡

This is a good recipe.

Adapted from Rachel Cooks

Ingredients:

All-purpose flour……………………………..2 cups
Ground ginger………………………………….1 Tbsp
Baking powder………………………………….2 tsp
Ground cinnamon…………………………….1 tsp
Salt…………………………………………………1/2 tsp
Butter……………………………………………..3/4 cups
White granulated sugar………………………1 cup
Large egg………………………………………….1
Molasses…………………………………………..1/4 cup

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350*F. Mix dry ingredients.
  2. In a separate bowl, cream shortening and sugar together. Beat in eggs and molasses.
  3. Sift in dry ingredients.
  4. Form into small balls. (My mom’s notes say “marble-sized,” but make sure you’re thinking of the big marbles, unless you want bite-sized ginger sparkles. Which would be fun too!
  5. Roll balls in sugar and place ~2″ apart on cookie sheet.
  6. Bake for 10 minutes.

February ’12: Vietnamese Green Tea Bánh Bò Nướng

比去年做的黃金糕容易得多,而且這個也比較成功(至少體積比黃金糕大),感覺有點像白糖糕。 😀
However I had a huge baking disaster in the kitchen.  The cake batter exploded everywhere 😦 Make sure you use a large cake pan, I used a 9″ cake pan and it sure wasn’t big enough after you plop it in the oven.

Adapted from Hungry Gnomes

Ingredients:

Eggs…………………………………………10
Coconut cream…………………………..1 can
Baking powder……………………………5 teaspoons [I actually used normal baking powder (I don’t think it’s single acting baking powder) and it worked well.  The cake didn’t deflate.]
Tapioca flour………………………………14 oz
Green tea powder………………………..1 teaspoon
Granulated sugar…………………………2 cups  [reduced to 2/3 cup]

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven at 370 degrees. Place a greased 10-inch round (or square) pan/cast iron skillet in the oven while you heat it up. This will make the crust really nice and crispy.
  2. Put all the ingredients into a bowl. With your hands, mix the batter together squeezing and breaking up all the tapioca flour clumps. DON’T use a hand or stand mixer. If you overmix the batter, the cake will fall flat. The batter will resemble the slime in old Nickelodeon shows. [I HAD to use a stand mixer in the end because the batter was very lumpy, and the cake came out fine]
  3. When the oven and pan is preheated, pour the batter through a fine mesh strainer directly into the heated pan. You want the batter to fill up about half of the pan.
  4. Bake for 40-45 minutes until golden brown on the top. The cake will puff up and form a pretty dome. Do NOT open the oven when checking on the cake or else it will flatten. Let the cake cool and rest before removing it from the pan.

February ’11: J’s Birthday

Chocolate cake and cupcakes

with heart shaped marshmallows 😀

December ’11: Chestnut Cakes

This is 70% made of chestnut purée, 15% almond meal, and the rest with a bit of sugar and flour.  I forgot the chestnut purée I used was already sweetened, so the cake was a bit oversweet.  Nonetheless it’s a good recipe.  I might add some almond essence next time to up the almond flavour.

Adapted from Scandi Foodie

Ingredients:

Large eggs…………………….4
Icing sugar……………………50g (increased to 100g)
Chestnut purée………………300g (increased to 500g)
Almond meal…………………100g
Baking powder……………….1 tsp
Flour…………………………….1/4 cup (I had more chestnut purée than the original recipe so I added some flour)

Settings:

180C; 30-40 minutes

December ’11: Citrus Gingerbread & Coconut Cookies

Citrus Gingerbread

I forgot to add fresh ginger.  The dough was rather crumbly (I don’t really know how I managed to roll and cut out the cookies in the end).  Overall a pretty good cookie recipe.

Adapted from Martha Stewart’s Holiday Cookies Magazine 2010

Ingredients:

Unsalted butter, softened…………………….2 sticks
Packed, dark brown sugar…………………….1 cup
Zest of 3 mandarins and 1 meyer lemon, about 2 tablespoons of zest, loosely packed (can use any citrus zest you like)
Finely grated fresh ginger root………………1 tablespoon
Large egg…………………………………………..1 (I added an extra egg)
Unsulfured molasses……………………………1/2 cup
Ground cinnamon………………………………..2 1/2 teaspoons
Ground ginger……………………………………..2 teaspoons
Ground allspice……………………………………1 teaspoon
Freshly grated nutmeg…………………………..1/2 teaspoon
Freshly ground black pepper…………………..1/4 teaspoon
Baking soda………………………………………….1 teaspoon
Salt……………………………………………………..1/4 teaspoon
All-purpose flour…………………………………..4 cups

Directions:

Beat the butter, brown sugar, zests, and fresh ginger together with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Add the egg and mix well. Beat in the molasses. In a separate bowl whisk together cinnamon, ground ginger, allspice, nutmeg, black pepper, baking soda, salt and flour. Reduce speed to low and add flour mixture, 1 cup at a time, mixing just until incorporated. Divide dough into quarters, shape into disks and wrap well with plastic. Chill for 3-24 hours.

Preheat oven to 375F. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out 1 disk of dough to 1/8 inch thickness. Cut out shapes using desired cookie cutters and place on parchment or silicone lined baking sheets. Repeat with remaining dough, re-rolling scraps as needed. Chill cut-outs on baking sheets for 20 minutes, until firm.

Bake 2 sheets at a time, rotating pans halfway through, for 12-15 minutes. Let cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely before decorating. Cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 1 week.

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Coconut Cookies

Looks like chicken nuggets!  Very crunchy and just the right amount of sweetness.  This is a keeper recipe 🙂

Adapted from That Skinny Chick can Bake

Ingredients:

Flour………………………………..1 1/2 cups
Baking soda……………………….1/2 teaspoon
Salt…………………………………..1/4 teaspoon
Butter, room temperature…….1/2 cup
Packed brown sugar…………….1/2 cup (reduced to 3/4 cup brown sugar)
Sugar…………………………………1/2 cup (omitted)
Egg……………………………………1
Vanilla……………………………….1/2 teaspoon
Coconut………………………………1 1/3 cup (Use unsweetened)
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350º.  Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Cream butter with brown sugar and sugar.  Add egg and mix well.  Add vanilla, then flour, soda and salt.  Mix well.  Add coconut.
  3. Place well rounded teaspoonfuls of dough about 3 inches apart.  Bake for 8-10 minutes.  Cool on wire racks.

November ’11: Sugar and Spice Espresso Cookies

The cookies don’t spread a lot.  I forgot to coat the cookies with sugar-cinnamon mixture, but this is a good recipe for those who love coffee and cinnamon 😉

Adapted from Sing for you supper

Makes approximately 48 cookies.

Ingredients:

Instant espresso powder……………….2 tablespoons, plus 1 teaspoon
Hot water…………………………………..1 tablespoon
Butter, softened…………………………..1 1/2stick
Sugar…………………………………………1 1/4 cups [reduce to 1/2 cup]
Packed brown sugar……………………..1/2 cup
Baking powder……………………………..1 teaspoon
Ground cinnamon…………………………1 teaspoon
Salt…………………………………………….1/2 teaspoon
Egg……………………………………………..1
Vanilla………………………………………..1 teaspoon
Flour…………………………………………..2 cups

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the 2 tablespoons espresso powder and water, stirring until coffee powder is dissolved. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or using a hand mixer), combine the butter and shortening; beat for 30 seconds.
  3. Add 1 cup of the granulated sugar, the brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Beat until combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally.
  4. Beat in the egg, vanilla and coffee mixture.
  5. Slowly add the flour a little at a time until fully incorporated.
  6. Divide the dough into thirds. Shape each portion into a 7-inch log. Wrap each log in plastic wrap and chill about 2 hours or until dough is firm enough to slice.
  7. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut logs into 3/8-inch slices. Place slices 2 inches apart on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. In a small bowl, stir together the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon espresso powder; sprinkle over slices.
  8. Bake for 9-10 minutes or until edges are golden brown.

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