Monday, 19 March 2018

Bouncy pork balls Q弹猪肉圆

I used to love one of the bak cho mee stall's meat balls but the last take-out we had, the quality is no longer the same.  I suspect they might have changed supplier.

In the region, I think Singapore has the bounciest fish/beef/pork balls!  Bounce aside, these days, it is hard to eat a good quality fish/beef/pork balls too.  

So I am in the quest to see whether I can achieve a good tasting and yet Bouncy pork balls Q弹肉圆.

Findings: This recipe lived up to its name.  I actually tried dropping it and it did bounced.  Taste wise, my hub prefers it a little saltier so I have increased the seasoning.

Overall, for a homemade version, I think this is good.

Adapted: Source

What you need:
Yield : 35-45 

560g pork, cut to small pieces
½ cup icy cold water
1½ tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp salt
½ tbsp sugar
½ tbsp oil
2 tbsp cornflour
1¼ tsp baking powder
½ tsp lye water {optional} (I omitted)
1 tsp black/white pepper


Mince the pork in a food processor until a paste is form.
Place pork into TM, turbo/4 -5 times.

Add 5 tbsp water (a tbsp of water at a time) to get a smooth paste.
Add water thru the cover, a tbsp at a time.

In a separate cup, mix together the remaining water, fish sauce, salt, sugar, oil, cornflour, baking powder and lye water.

Remove the pork paste from the food processor and put in a big bowl.
Let the meat stay in TM bowl. 1 min/sp9

Pour the seasoning to the beef paste and stir well slowly (in one direction) until the liquid is absorbed into the paste (use either your hand or a fork).
Pour the seasoning through the cover, 2 mins/knead

Cover bowl with clingwrap and place in the freezer for 30 minutes.
Transfer to a bowl and clingwrap.  Freeze for 30 mins.

Boil a pot of water. Once the water has boiled, remove the pot from the heat.

Dip your hand in water, scoop the paste onto your wet hand. Push the paste through your thumb and 2nd finger by making a fist.

Use a wet spoon to scoop and drop it into the hot water.

Repeat process until the beef balls form a layer in the water.

Now turn on the heat and important not to let the water boil, just simmer slowly without bubble.  If not beef ball will not be bouncy. 

Any leftover paste should be kept in the freezer.

Fill a big basin with icy cold water.

When the beef balls starts to float, leave for a few more seconds. (to check doneness, cut one in half to see. The inside should not be pink).

Scoop out and let it cool in the cold water.

After the beef balls have cooled, use as required or drain and freeze.


Thursday, 15 March 2018

Roselle Plum Tea 乌梅洛神花茶 (2)

My son used to love drinking Roselle Tea.  I like making it for him as it can protects his liver but recently after I bought a big packet of the dried roselle, he seems to lost interest in it.  

I have brewed Roselle Plum Tea 乌梅洛神花茶 before but recently I discovered a way to make it taste even better.

Besides all its vitamins and minerals properties, apparently, roselle not only aid you to sleep better, it also has a slimming properties.  Since I wasn't able to sleep well lately, I brew a pot of this tea to help with my insomnia. It also can lower blood pressure too.

Now I can kill many birds with one stone! 😀

Having mentioned its benefit, if you are pregnant, please do not drink this tea.  Or if you have intestinal issues, also do not drink this.  This is also not suitable for the sick.  This is also not suitable if you are having cough.

There are two schools of thoughts, one being it is okay to drink 200ml daily as it claimed that studies had shown that it can lower blood pressure after a few weeks.  The other being that Roselle has cooling properties, it can be bad for those who has unbalance yin and yang.

Then again, excessive has never been good for the body even if it is a good source.  Right?  So drink randomly will be the safest, at least that is how I view it.

Here is a list of benefits that you can listen to.

Seems like this will be a perfect time to drink this after loading so much CNY goodies which is known to be heaty.

What you need:

50g dried roselle
1.5 litre of water
5 - 6 pcs dried plum 乌梅
5 -6 pcs licorice roots (optional)
5 - 6 pcs dried hawthorn (optional)
Rock sugar to taste
Pinch of salt


Bring to boil the water and add in dried plum.  Continue to bring to a boil for 5 mins.

Add in dried roselle, cover.  Turn off heat and let it sit for 3 mins.

Turn on heat again and remove the dried roselle.

Add in rock sugar and salt.

Serve hot or cold.


Monday, 12 March 2018

Urticales coconut soup 五指毛桃椰子汤

During my last trip to HK, my cousin's mother in law brewed this Urticales coconut soup 五指毛桃椰子汤.  She said it is very good for cough.  Actually I only the herb by Chinese and done a google search for this herb to get the English name for it.

It is call 五指毛桃, because the leaves resemble 5 fingers and the fruits when ripe has skin like the peach.  The roots after boiling tasted like coconut.

I have noticed a lot of people started coughing and my girl and I also have been coughing.  So shall make a pot of this soup for the whole family.

I am not sure whether this roots is available in Singapore but if you know of any medical hall that sells this, please let me know as I only have 2 bundles.  

You can read more on this herb here

What you need:
8 servings

1 bunch of Urticales root 五指毛桃
20 pcs sweet almond
10 pcs bitter almond
1 old coconut (available in Mustaffa)
400g lean pork
3 litres of water


Blanched pork.

Rinsed Urticales root, sweet almond, bitter almond and coconut.

Bring to boil the water and add in the Urticales root, sweet almond, bitter almond and coconut.  Bring to a boil again and lower heat to a simmer and simmer for 4 hours.

For slow cooker: Combined water and all the ingredients.  Cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.

Season with salt.

Note: if you put this in a slow cooker, you only need 4 bowls of water.


Thursday, 8 March 2018

Danish Bread (Air fryer)

I took a sudden interest in make puff pastry.   I guess with kids spending more time out of the house, I find myself taking on more challenges.

So today, I shall attempt a Danish Bread recipe.

I have done the dough last night and when I opened the fridge, I saw the lid of my container was not covering my dough well.   I was horrified to see that a layer of crust formed while I was proofing my dough in the fridge.  Not wanting to waste the dough, I proceeded on.

Was glad that despite butter starts oozing out, I was determined not to let that scares me.  I repeated more chilling time and layering.

I was happy to see nice layers on the dough when I cut it but I marred it by brush on egg wash onto the folds!  There goes all my layers. 😢

The bread was flavourful, I guess from all those butter but the texture is nice and soft and also a crusty top.  I shall see whether tomorrow it will yield the same texture.

Learnings: The flavour was really good but I am not happy with the crumb as it is not fine.  I am not sure how it should be but I will work on this again.

Taste wise, this recipe is a keeper but I need to work on the layerings.

What you need:

240g bread flour
60g cake flour
15g whipping cream
3.5g instant yeast
1 tsp salt
40g sugar
1 egg
120g water
15g unsalted butter

120g unsalted butter.


Mark a piece of parchment paper with 10X10cm.  Double layer it.  Place the 120g unsalted butter on it.  Wrapped and using a rolling pin, bang to soften the butter to fit into the dimension.  Chill.

In a mixer, on low speed, combine bread flour, cake flour, whipping cream, instant yeast, salt, sugar, egg and water.  Knead to form a rough dough.  Increase the speed and knead to a smooth dough.

Add in butter and continue to knead to an elastic dough.

Remove and place in an oiled bowl.  Cover and chill for 8 hours.

Punch down the dough, roll into a square, place chilled butter in the centre and fold down as in the envelope fold.  Seal well.    Chill for 30 mins.

Press and roll into a rectangle.  Do a three folds.  Chill.

Press and roll 3 times more.

Roll the dough out into a rectangle.  Roll into a cyclinder.

Cut into halves.

Slit in the centre and insert one end into the slit.

Put it into a greased bread tin.  Let it rest for 45 mins.

Bake at 170⁰C for 30 mins.

Release from pan and transfer to cooling rack.


Monday, 5 March 2018

Peach Gum Gleditsia rice with White Fungus Sweet Soup 桃膠雪莲子银耳糖水

Continuing with the peach gum series.  Today, I prepared Peach Gum Gleditsia rice with White Fungus Sweet Soup 桃膠雪莲子银耳糖水.

If you want to know how Gleditsia Rice looks like, please refer to here.

This is equally delicious and also helps me to load up some collagen. 😁😁

Learnings: I find that using a slow cooker is much better than direct heat as I need keep stirring periodically to ensure that ingredients will not stick to the pot.

What you need:
Serve 4

20g peach gum
10g Gleditsia rice
10 Dried Logan, soak to soften
6 Red Dates, pits removed
White Fungus (if you like, you can add more)
Rock sugar (to taste)

The night before, soak peach gum and gleditsia rice separately.

Remove all impurities from peach gum.  

In a slow cooker, add all the ingredients in except the rock sugar.

Let it boil on med for 2 hours and and add rock sugar and continue to cook for another 1/2 hour.

If it is not sweet enough, you can add more rock sugar.


Thursday, 1 March 2018

Croissant 法式可頌 (Air baked)

Currently, I am going into this puff pastry craze.  I have done Croissant  法式可頌 a couple times before and all were failures.

I must be crazy to attempt Croissant in this temperature.  I have a friend who is so into it that she actually airconditioned her kitchen to attempt this quest.

Well, I have neither the budget nor the kitchen structure that allows it to happened but that did not deter me for trying.

So this time round, I was wondering whether I can produce something edible.  At least with no oil oozing out from the pastry.

I am so thrilled when I saw how nicely puffed up these babies!  with no oily mess!

Learning: Yes, the layerings are horrible and there are tons of improvement to be made.

I am pretty contenteded with this attempt.

I hope to get better result next round.

What you need:

300g bread flour
4g instant yeast
6g salt
24g sugar
150g water
20g milk powder

150g unsalted butter


Place butter between 2 large sheet of plastic.  Fold the edge to 10cm X 10cm.    Using a rolling pin to pound the butter to the thickness of 1/2 cm thick. .  Chill.

In a mixer, combine all ingredients and knead into an elastic dough.  Pass window pane.

Shape dough into a ball.  Cover and leave it at room temp to proof for 30 mins and then chill for 4 - 6 hours.

Degas dough.

Roll dough into a cross.

Place chilled butter in the centre and fold down all edges.

Using rolling pin, press in the centre and move toward the edges up and down.

Roll into a rectangle.  Fold into thirds.   Chill for 30 - 40 mins.

Repeat the pressing, rolling, folding and chilling process 3 times.

Roll the dough into a rectangle, cut into a triangle 9X20cm  Roll it up into a croissant.

Proof for 45-60 mins.  Brush with egg wash.

Bake at 200°C for 15 - 20 mins until golden.
Air bake at 195°C for 4 mins or 3 mins for a light colour.


Monday, 26 February 2018

Bacon and spinach quiche

Bacon and spinach quiche for tonight's dinner.

What you need:

6 large eggs, beaten
1½ cup heavy cream
Salt and pepper
100g baby spinach
200g shredded cheese
1 9” pie crust


Preheat oven to 190°C.

Whisk eggs, cream, salt and pepper together.

Layer the spinanch, bacon and cheese in the bottom of the pie crust.

Pour egg mixture on top.

Bake for 35 – 45 mins until the egg mixture is set.

Serve hot.