Tag Archives: apple

Smitten Kitchen’s Sunken Apple and Honey Cake

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It’s been awhile since I last wrote anything here. It has really been another couple of mad months. I knew turning two was a milestone, just didn’t know of the effects that came with! Well, now I have experienced it first hand and pretty much survived it. Although I have had time and chance to try out a few recipes from the Internet, I was usually too drained. In this time, the wonderful blog of Smitten Kitchen had been a wonderful read and inspiration. It still is!

Well, when I saw this post, I couldn’t resist but have a short bake as it is apple season now. The apples I used were a mix of Braeburn and Boskoop. I really enjoyed the cake. So did my neighbors. The salted honey glaze just gave it an edge that normal apple cakes lack. This is going to be my favorite apple cake recipe for now! For the recipe please click here.

And guess what, after I hit the “Publish” button, I’ll be baking my second sunken apple and honey cake 🙂

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Sweet and Sour Chicken

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Sweet and sour chicken/pork has such a universal appeal. I think it is the flavors and textures exploding in one’s mouth that makes it such an instant hit. The meat is first battered and deep fried till crispy before being coated in a sweet and sour sauce with cubes of cucumber/bell pepper and very usually, pineapple. Crunchy, fruity yet luscious is the end result of a well-made sweet and sour dish.

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This dish has since become one of our dishes. I used apple instead of pineapple as apple is easily available here. The recipe is adapted from here, Rasa Malaysia.

Ingredients
400-500g chicken breast, cut in cubes
1 apple, peeled, cored and cubed (Substitute with fresh pineapple, if you like)
1 red bell pepper, cut to rough squares
2 stalks scallions/spring onions, chopped to 2cm lengths (for the thick white part, halve it on the long side)
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
Corn flour to coat cubed chicken meat
Salt and pepper to season
Oil for deep frying/shallow frying plus stir frying

Sweet and sour sauce
1 1/2 tbsp ketchup
1 1/2 tsp plum sauce
1/8 tsp rice wine vinegar/sushi rice vinegar
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp oyster sauce
1 tsp sugar
2 tbsp water

Method
1. Season the cubed chicken meat with salt and pepper. Coat with corn flour.
2. Prepare the sweet and sour sauce by mixing all the ingredients for the sauce together in a bowl and set aside.
3. Heat enough oil to shallow fry or to deep fry. When the oil is hot, fry the meat until golden. Make sure to pat off excess corn flour before putting in for frying. Once golden brown, remove and drain either on paper towels or on a sieve.
4. Heat up a wok/large frying pan. Drizzle in cooking oil and fry garlic till golden brown. Add in the bell peppers and apples. When the aroma of the bell pepper can be smelled, add in the sauce. Once the sauce thickens, add in the fried meat and coat thoroughly. Add in scallions and stir through to mix. Serve.

Enjoy!

Martha Stewart’s Rustic Apple Tart

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Hi, I am back from hibernating. While I have not been actively blogging, I have not stopped cooking or baking. The long absence was due to shortage of time and me disappearing for one month to Germany with Soenke and Mika. I still have to figure out how to manage my time better as it will be harder now that we are preparing to relocate.

Anyway, this attempt here with puff pastry started with a package of store bought puff pastry that has been sitting in my freezer for months. I had been wanting to do something with puff pastry. However, all the dimensions involved in the rolling and cutting of the pastry was a hassle. Mind block, one can say. Oh well, after months of self nagging to get it over with, I have finally done it. It definitely was not perfect. I had problems rolling the pastry to a rectangle. My mandolin cuts funny. You will see the strange cut marks on the apple slices. And, I skipped the glaze. Soenke was not so keen to have apricot jam painted all over his precious apples. I was able to save some washing up. Heh, why not?

Aye, the apple tart turned out to be rather yummy except for the bottom part of the puff pastry where it was a bit hard to bite into. I guess it is just a matter of practice, practice, practice!

Ingredients

1 sheet frozen puff pastry (from a standard 17.3-ounce package), thawed
Flour, for work surface
3 Granny Smith apples
1/3 cup sugar
1 large egg yolk, beaten with 1 teaspoon water, for egg wash
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons apple jelly, or apricot jam

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Open pastry sheet and remove paper. Fold sheet back up. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out pastry sheet (still folded) to an 8-by-14-inch rectangle. Trim edges with a pizza cutter or sharp paring knife. Transfer to a baking sheet; place in freezer. Peel, core, and slice apples 1/4 inch thick. Toss in a large bowl with sugar.

Brush pastry with egg wash, avoiding edges. Use a sharp paring knife to score a 3/4-inch border around pastry (do not cut all the way through). Place apples inside border, and dot with butter. Bake until pastry is golden and apples are tender, 30 to 35 minutes.

In the microwave or a small saucepan, heat jelly with 1 tablespoon water until melted. Brush apples with glaze. Serve tart warm or at room temperature, cutting into pieces with a serrated knife.

As mentioned previously, I have skipped the glazing part (last step of the recipe). Now that you are warned, do not be alarmed that the tart in the pictures is not shiny and glistening. And I am not joking, tastewise, it is still good! Here have a look and see if you can spot the strange marks on the apple slices from the mandolin.

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