Monday, December 10, 2012

Cranberry and white chocolate scones with chantilly cream

My family enjoys eating scones and the first recipe that I tried was Rachel Allen's recipe. It is a great basic scone recipe, which can be added with many other flavours such as fruits and nuts to suit your taste palette.

However, there are times when you feel like you want to try something new; new ingredients, new recipes. This is my first time baking with fresh cranberries. Fresh cranberries are hard to find, I've been looking all over for them. But I managed to find some while we did our grocery shopping at Citta Mall in Ara Damansara.

The scones taste pretty much like the raspberry scones I made while we were in Paris last year. I wanted to share that recipe with you but I don't have the pictures to post along with it. So I hope this recipe will do, for now.

These scones are light, flaky and flavourful - tart and sweet with a hint of orange, best served with clotted cream or chantilly cream. Since clotted cream can be quite expensive, almost RM 30 for a small jar, if I'm not mistaken, I simply served them with homemade chantilly cream, which is sweetened whipped cream with vanilla.


  • 3/4 cup buttermilk or yogurt
  • 1 egg
  • 2 3/4 cup flour
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup of coarsely chopped cranberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 orange, rind of
1. Preheat oven to 180C.
2. Mix the buttermilk and egg in a bowl.
3. In another bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut in butter until the mixture resembles small peas.
4. Mix in cranberries, white chocolate chips, sugar and the rind of orange.
5. Pour in the buttermilk mixture and mix until just combine. Do not knead or it'll become stone hard.
6. Once combined, transfer onto a lightly floured working surface. Pat into 2 balls about 1 inch thick. 
7. Cut into 6 - 8 wedges each and place them onto a lined baking tray.
8. Bake for about 15 - 20 minutes until golden brown.

Adapted from:

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Dark chocolate and orange cake

Chocolate and orange - a match made in heaven. The sweet-scented orange compliments the slight bitterness of the chocolate.. Ahhh.. They are just perfect together. I can never have enough of them. That's why I can eat Lindt - Orange Intense chocolate bar all by myself, despite the fact that they don't do any good to my waistline.

Well, so is this cake.. or any other food if not taken in moderation. However, I always feel that if the food is not delicious, then it is not worth the calorie. I don't know the calories for a slice of this cake, but I can assure you that it would totally be worth it.

It was my youngest sister who first made this cake a few months ago and to her disappointment, it didn't turn out quite right. I'm sorry to say this, Hani, but the cake looked horrible. As not to waste the cake, she still made the ganache to be poured on top. Surprisingly, everyone loved this dense yet moist cake and it left us craving for more. Well, everyone except my cousin who hates dark chocolate.

If you're not a fan of dark chocolate, you may not like it as much as we do. But you can still substitute the dark chocolate with milk chocolate and you might have to reduce the sugar, or else it would be a little bit too sweet.


  • 1 Seville orange
  • 100 g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 3 eggs
  • 270 g caster sugar
  • 240 ml sunflower oil
  • 25 g cocoa powder
  • 250 g plain flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1. Pierce the orange with a skewer (right through). Boil it in a pot of water for 30 minutes, until soft. Blend the orange to form a smooth puree and let it cool.
2. Preheat the oven to 180C and line a 9 inch cake pan. 
3. Melt the chocolate over a pot of simmering water, or in a microwave for 2 minutes on high, stirring after 1 minute. Let cool. 
4. In a large bowl, beat the eggs, sugar and oil. Gradually beat in the pureed orange and melted chocolate. 
5. Sift in the flour, cocoa powder and baking powder. Pour into the cake tin.
6. Bake for 45 - 55 minutes, until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Let cool.

  • 120 g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 90 g semisweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
1. Bring the cream to a simmer, then pour over the chocolate.
2. Leave for 2 minutes, then stir until smooth.
3. Set aside until it is firm enough to spread over the cake.

Source and adapted from : BBC Good Food

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Chocolate Spiced Cupcake with a surprise center

I would come home every weekend and there would be people asking me, how do I control myself from falling into temptations? There's tv to be watched, fast wi-fi to go online and cars to be driven out.. How do I contain myself?

The truth is, I don't really watch tv, I surf the internet everyday does not matter where I am and I basically hate driving. So.. that's how I do it. I don't feel tempted to watch tv even though I sleep in the AV room almost every night and no matter how many cars are there at home, I only go out when there's people who is willing to drive me around. I guess I only get the driving license, immediately after my 17th birthday, just for the sake of having it. It's not like I really want to drive. And for that, I'm quite grateful that Abah decided not to buy me the car that he promised to, or else.. it would only be a waste of money.

But then again, I do watch tv, I do get online and I like going out.. If it involves cooking, baking and basically, food! I love watching cooking shows, I find recipes online (and my favourite websites would be tastespotting and foodgawker) and I enjoy doing grocery shopping and visiting the shops that sell baking supplies.

So now you know my weakness - food. I just can't help it. I have to bake something, at least once a week, that's how I release my tension. However, I do have to say here that I do not enjoy eating as much as I love making it. So.. yes, everyone else would have to finish up whatever I make. :P

One of my favourite cooking shows would be bake with Anna Olson. I've only watched it twice, because apparently it is shown on weekdays, making it impossible for me to follow the show religiously. I just love the kitchen that she's working in, I don't care if it is just a studio (or not), I'm in love with it! I wish I could have a kitchen like that. :( Anyways, I just want to share this cupcake recipe that I've tried from her show.

I like it, my family likes it and I hope you like it too. :)

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Buttermilk Dinner Rolls

It's finally November! A few months have passed and exam is just around the corner, my final semester exam before sitting for the IB exam in May 2013. The third semester has almost come to an end. Time sure flies. Anyways, school was hectic. With lots of IAs, ToK, tests and placement stuffs, life just could not get any busier. Sometimes I feel very motivated, sometimes I'm not. Sometimes I know that I can do this, sometimes I doubt myself. Sometimes I'm up, sometimes I'm at the bottom of the wheel. I guess what keeps me going is my family.. and not to forget, my friends.

I sure miss taking photos of the food I baked, blogging about recipes and life in general. So here goes another recipe that I think I should have shared it much earlier, considering that this is my family's favourite. However, I believe that it is better late than never. I first tried making this bread in 2009. And from that on, I have been making these rolls whenever we needed some. I can assure you that this recipe is worth trying and it will leave you craving for more!

These buns are very versatile, you can have it with just about anything, at anytime of the day. We've had it with sausages, sauteed mushrooms, soups, sardines etc. Since I've ran out of buttermilk, I just substituted it with a cup of milk mixed with a tablespoon of vinegar. And at times, when I'm in the mood of making it,  I'll put in a couple tablespoons of water roux. But then again, it is not really necessary. This dough can be made ahead of time and be refrigerated, so that you can have fresh bread anytime you want. But I only make a third of the recipe, since that is more than enough to serve my family.

Amazing Buttermilk Rolls (makes about 3 dozens):

  • 3 cups of buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 3 cups of flour
  • 1 tbsp of instant yeast
Combine the three ingredients in a bowl, cover and let it sit for about 2 hours, until it has doubled in size.

  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup of oil
  • 5 cups of flour (add more if the dough is too sticky)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
Mix all the ingredients above into the same bowl as the previous one. Knead for about 7 to 10 minutes (more if using hands) until the dough becomes soft and elastic. Shape into buns and place them onto baking trays. Let them sit for an hour, until they double in size. Then, brush with some egg wash. Bake in a preheated oven at 175C for 10 - 12 minutes. Cover with aluminium foil, halfway through, if they brown too much.

Source: The Sisters Cafe

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Light Apricot Cheesecake

Yesterday was Abah's birthday and few days back was Umi's. So happy birthday to you both! May your lives will be filled with joy and laughter! :)

My sister and I were tired of thinking of what to bake for them (every year we would make them something and I guess this year was the simplest). Since I bake almost every day, now that I am still having my break, I ran out of ideas. We ate everything, I mean everything that we felt like eating. So when their birthdays came, we just couldn't think of any recipes. I asked Umi what she wanted and she said she only wanted a trifle. So that was what I made her, a dark chocolate cake layered with softly whipped cream and strawberries. It was simple yet very delicious!

When Abah's birthday came a few days later (which was yesterday), again, I asked Abah what he wanted. Does he want a cake or pudding or anything? 
And then he said, "a cheesecake, a New York Cheesecake!"
I was like, "you want a New York Cheesecake? Are you sure? That's a very dense cake." I have never baked New York Cheesecake but I know that we are going to have a hard time finishing the cake, because that's what always happen when we buy this kind of cheesecake from Secret Recipe.
Then he changed his mind and said he wanted something light and not very cheesy.

I then started thinking about the Japanese Cheesecake but that would be too simple for his birthday - or so I thought. So I decided to make this light apricot cheesecake, inspired by my grandmother's cake that she baked last Eid. She did tell me the recipe for her cake but I couldn't remember it. All I know is that she boiled the dried apricots before turning them into puree. However, I didn't bother doing that, so I just blend it with some milk and greek yogurt. 

I tweaked this recipe and made use of what I have. I didn't have sour cream so I just used greek yogurt instead. And I did change the measurements because I wanted to add the apricots. In this recipe, I used dried apricots which we bought when we went for Umrah the other day. I am not very sure whether fresh apricots could be used or not. Perhaps, it needs to be a very ripe one. 

Recipe (Light Apricot Cheesecake) :


  • 120g biscuits (I used Speculoos), crushed
  • 3 tbsp melted butter

1. Prepare a 9-inch springform pan.
2. Mix the butter and biscuits together. Press onto the base of the pan. Refrigerate.

  • 250g cream cheese, softened
  • 120g dried apricots, cut into smaller pieces
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 2/3 cup greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp cornflour
  • 3 egg whites

1. Preheat the oven to 160C. Pour some water in a pan to be put onto the lower rack of the oven which will help to prevent cracks in the cake.
2. Blend the apricots together with the milk and greek yogurt. Set aside. I was left with little chunks of apricots, and I like it that way.
3. Beat the cream cheese, 1/2 cup caster sugar and vanilla. Beat the egg yolks, cornflour and the mixture of apricot yogurt. Set aside.
4. In another clean bowl, beat the egg whites with 1 tbsp sugar until stiff peaks. 
5. Fold in the egg whites into the cream cheese mixture.
6. Pour over the crust in the springform pan. Put the pan in the middle rack of the oven. 
7. Bake for 40 minutes and let it cool in the oven (door closed) for one hour.
8. Then, let it stay in the oven with the door slightly ajar until it has cooled completely.
9. Refrigerate for a few hours before serving.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Herbed Focaccia with Sauteed Mushrooms and Caramelized Onions

Focaccia is a very versatile Italian flat-bread. I think it is quite similar to pizza but somehow they are not considered as one. This bread is very easy to make and can be made at any time of the day as it takes less than an hour to get it ready on the table.

Since Umi is feeling like eating bread and I seriously have no idea what bread to bake her, so I thought why not make her this. It's easy, fast and delicious too. :D

Any kind of toppings would be good on focaccia, if you're not planning to turn them into sandwich bread. Sometimes I would put some meat on with carrots and tomatoes. But today I decided to do something simple. Caramelized the onions, sauteed some mushrooms, grated some mozzarella cheese and Voila! A bread is made under an hour! Life just couldn't get any simpler than this. :)

Recipe (Herbed Focaccia) :


  • 2 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp white sugar
  • 1 tbsp yeast
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 sprig of rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • a pinch of black pepper
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 cup warm water
  • sauteed mushrooms
  • caramelized onions
  • mozzarella cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 230C.
2. Put everything into a bowl except for caramelized onions, cheese and mushrooms. Knead until the dough is soft and elastic.
3. Leave to proof for 20 minutes. Then knock the air out of the dough and pat it into a triangle. 
4. Brush with olive oil and put the toppings of your choice. Bake for 15 minutes. 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Chocolate Beet Cupcake

One more week to go before all the Year 1 students need to pass up their Extended Essay first draft. I am only done with the introduction and the body of the essay. Oh God, help me to get through IB! :( This semester is going to be a very important one, as it will determine our placement. I am hoping and praying that I could go to UK. :(

As usual, I would still go home on weekends even though exams are just around the corner. I just can't study if I were to stay in hostel. It is very depressing and I'll end up sleeping instead. At least, when you are at home, you get to see the faces of your loved ones which makes your days a lot brighter and your life a little stress free. And only then will I be able to study calmly. Or else I couldn't even focus on what I study, I might have to reread a sentence millions of times before I am able to understand. Well you know what they say, home is where the heart is. <3

Today, I've baked something really simple, chocolate beet cupcakes with beet cream cheese frosting. To me, it tasted pretty much like red velvet cupcakes but without all those scary red colouring. I guess that's why mom didn't like, she never liked red velvet cupcakes. It is not chocolatey enough for her. Even though I, too, don't find it chocolatey enough but I guess that's how red velvet cupcakes should taste like, just a hint of chocolate.

The recipe can be found here.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Chocolate Truffle Cupcakes

Guess what? I have finally found my favourite chocolate cupcakes recipe. It is so easy to make and you could certainly whip this up at the very last hour if you have unexpected guests coming, except for of course, you might need to let the cupcakes cool down for a little while before you put on the ganache.

I've over-whipped the ganache, so it looked quite grainy and not very appetizing. But hey! Who cares what it looks like as long as it's delicious! :D

Chocolate Truffle Cupcakes - Makes 20
from Bisousatoi


  • 5 eggs
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 75g flour
  • 40g cocoa powder
  • 50g dark chocolate
  • 65g butter
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Ganache topping
  • 250g whipping cream/heavy cream
  • 250g dark chocolate
  • 30g unsalted butter


1. Preheat the oven at 180C.
2. Melt dark chocolate with butter using a double boiler. 
3. Beat the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy. Then add in the sifted flour, cocoa powder and bicarb.
4. Next add in the melted chocolate. Stir well and scoop into cupcake liners. 
5. Bake for 13-15 minutes. Once baked, let it cool.
6. Prepare the ganache by heating the whipping cream using a double boiler. Then add in the chocolate and butter. Once melted, take off from heat.
7. Let the ganache chill in the refrigerator. After it has been chilled, whip the ganache until fluffy and it is ready to be piped. 

I halved the recipe and got 8 cupcakes out of it.

Sunday, March 4, 2012


When I was small, I used to hate lasagna as I find it being too rich and cheesy. However, as I grow up, I begin to fall in love with this Italian dish. I still remember, it would always be my eldest sister who would make this. Now that I have developed an intense passion towards baking, I too, can make the dish. :)

I used the recipe provided behind the lasagna sheets box but have made several adjustments to suit our taste buds. I used combinations of cheddar and mozzarella cheese this time but you could use any other types of cheese if you wish to. The vegetables that I would normally put in lasagna are tomatoes and carrot but I also included a medium-sized green zucchini this time around.


For the meat sauce :

  • 800g minced beef
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 3 tbsp of oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 carrot, thinly sliced
  • 1 green zucchini, diced
  • 3 large tomatoes, diced
  • 5 tbsp tomato puree
  • 2 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 1 tsp chili sauce
  • 1 cube of chicken stock.
  • salt
  • pepper

1. Heat a pot with some oil in it over medium heat. Once hot, put in the onions and cook until they wilt or become translucent.
2. Next put in the garlic and meat. The meat will releases its juices.
3. Put all the other ingredients in, and let it simmer away.
4. Season to taste and turn off the heat once the sauce is dry (no more pools of water).

For the bechamel sauce :

  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 4 tbsp flour
  • 1 litre milk (4 cups)
  • 250g cheddar or mozzarella cheese
  • salt, pepper to taste

1. Melt the butter over medium heat and put in the flour. Cook the flour for about 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.
2. Quickly whisk in the milk to avoid lumps. Put the saucepan back on the heat.
3. Stir continuously until the sauce thickens. 
4. Put in the cheese and season it. 
5. Once it boils, turn off the heat.

Assembling :

  • Grated parmesan or mozzarella cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 180C.
2. Start with a layer of meat sauce, followed by lasagna sheets and then bechamel sauce. It would be nice if you could have at least 4 layers.
3.  Finish off with the bechamel sauce and topped with grated cheese.
4. Bake for about 40 minutes or until it browns a little.

Homegrown tomato plant.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Dark Chocolate Tart

Few more days to go before holiday starts! I seriously can't wait for holidays, I've been aching for it long enough. My body is tired, my mind is exhausted. I'm in a serious need of a break. Oh Wednesday, do come fast!

I had a very packed schedule last week, with the Minggu Bahasa Antarabangsa going on, in which our class had to join 3 competitions. To our disappointment, we didn't win anything. But it's alright, at least we had fun and we got to eat Big Apple doughnuts in the end. :P

So today I made dark chocolate tart which I adapted from this website. It's weird that my sister didn't like it so much because it would always be her who loves and finishes what I cook or bake. But she still ate 2 slices of it. Guess it wasn't that bad huh? :D *Update : It tasted even better (my sister agreed on this) after it has been sitting in the fridge for a night* My mom likes it though. Only chocoholic would appreciate this rich and chocolatey tart! :)

Dark Chocolate Tart - 9 inch

For the crust :
  • 1 cup digestive biscuit crumbs
  • 5 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
1. Preheat oven at 180C.
2. Process everything in a food processor and press it onto a 9-inch tart pan.
3. Bake for 10 minutes until slightly puffed up and let it cool for 15-20 minutes.

For the filling :
  • 227g dark chocolate, chopped (not more than 65% cocoa)
  • 1 1/4 cup of heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp salt
1. Heat the milk in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil.
2. Pour over the chopped chocolate and whisk gently. Then, let it cool slightly.
3. Add the vanilla, eggs and salt to the chocolate mixture.
4. Pour over the slightly cooled crust and bake for 22-28 minutes. I baked for 28 minutes and it burnt a little bit, so I would reduce the cooking time in another try. But remember, it all depends on the oven. 
5. After it has baked, let it cool for at least an hour.

For the glaze :
  • 50g dark chocolate, chopped
  • 2 tbsp of heavy cream
  • 1 tbsp of water
  • 1 tsp of golden syrup
1. Heat the heavy cream in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil.
2. Pour over the chopped chocolate and stir.
3. Mix in the water and golden syrup.
4. Pour over the tart, tilt around to even out the glaze.
5. Let it set for another hour or refrigerate for at least 4 hours and remove at least 2 hours before serving.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Pick Me Up

Last week seemed like a very long week. I've been waiting for weekends to come since Monday. And now we have actually come to a new Monday. Time just flies..

I really want to update my blog as often as I could. However, I just can't seem to put my words right when constructing a sentence. Then I would simply hit the red button at the left corner of the window and start doing something else instead. I'm not sure when will I be able to write a good post, a very descriptive explanation on whatever I baked or cooked. I guess one can only dream.

Yesterday, I made some tiramisu which my youngest sister have been requested since last month! I have got everything in the fridge, ready to be turned into tiramisu. But oh well, I will always be me. I'm quite a procrastinator, everybody knows that.

Since there are two days of chinese new year holiday, which makes up to four days free of school, I decided to make the tiramisu with the help of my sister. She only helped me with the assembling part but hey, at least she helped! :)

This is a non-alcoholic version, which is hard to find if you were to look for it in restaurants. And since I'm using coffee that has been sweetened up a little bit, I reduced the sugar in the custard. One is never enough for my sister and a second helping is a must.

Recipe (tiramisu) :

  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 250g mascarpone
  • 220g cream cheese
  • 180 ml coffee
  • Ladyfingers/ savoiardi biscuits
Method :

1. In a medium saucepan, whisk together egg, sugar and milk over medium heat until it boils. Let it boil for 1 minute, remove from heat and refrigerate for one hour once it has cooled down a little.
2. In a medium bowl, whip heavy cream with vanilla until stiff.
3. Combine mascarpone, cream cheese with the custard (egg yolk mixture).
4. Carefully fold in the whipped cream.
5. Soak the ladyfingers in the coffee and start layering.
6. Dust with some cocoa powder and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Serves 8.