Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Congolais Ou Rochers Coco 刚果椰子球

My friend An Ting borrowed me some recipe books before she went to Malaysia for vacation with her hubby. I like the books that she borrowed me, with easy recipe and step by step instruction. The recipes from the book seems easy and the pictures are so nice that I ended up bookmarked so many of them, and now I wonder if I have so much time to try them out before I return the books to her....

Congolais Ou Rochers Coco (french) is an quick and easy baked coconut ball. It is similar to coconut macaroons except this recipe call for whole egg instead of just egg whites. It has a slightly crispy exterior with soft and chewy interior. These sweet coconut balls are great for any occasions, be it a tea time gathering or the coming festive seasons. It is also great to make it together with kids.

This is the book that I used to bake the coconut balls. 法国经典甜点 La Patisserie Francaise Pour Tous
Author: Francis Maes 法兰西斯。马耶斯 and 林凤美


130g sugar
170g dessicated coconut
15g cake flour
2 eggs


1) Preheat oven to 175 degC. Line a baking tray with baking paper. 
2) Put sugar and dessicated coconut into a mixing bowl, mix well.
3) Add in 2 eggs, mix well.
4) Add in cake flour, mix well.
5) Use a measuring spoon to scoop out a spoonful of the mixture, shape into a dome shape and place it on a baking tray. See pic below

6) Repeat Step 5) until all the mixture has used up. 
7) Put into oven and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and leave it to cool.
8) Done and ready to eat!

-Leave it to cool before storing it into a container. It can be stored up to 2 weeks.
-If you are living in a hot country with high humidity, the coconut balls would probably gone soft after few days, you can re-bake it in the oven for 10 minutes to remove the moisture, leave it to cool before eating. 

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Recipe Books Gifted By A Friends

These books arrived to me on the Halloween day, I was so excited when I received it, I finally got some chinese recipe books. Living in an English speaking country, I couldn't find any chinese book shop here, and order online from Taiwan or Malaysia websites would cost me a fortune. It is not an option to order books from Taiwan or Malaysia as the charges and postage fee are higher than the book itself. I am thankful to Shirley who sent me these books, she has lightened up my day! Thank you!

Shirley is a good friend of mine when we were in Belfast. She is a kind and helpful young lady, and she is the one who will always be there when I am in need, be it a personal or work or health issues, she always try her best to help. As a thank you to her, I want to share her healthy weight loss story here. She started her weight lose plan about a year ago. Her plan was started with exercise and control eating. Jogging and aerobics for an hour and sometimes she will do weight training as well. She doesn't eat dinner or if she is hungry at the night time, fruits always be her choice. She kept her calorie under 800kcal per day for the first 4 consecutive months, and this had resulted her weight to drop from 11 stone to 9.5 stone. After that, she increased her calorie intake to 1000kcal, with daily exercise and 2 litre of lemon water. She also take vitamin B-complex daily to enhance the metabolism system. Now her weight has further reduced to 7.5 stone, that is in 11 months time! And she still wish to drop another half stone to complete her weight loss plan. I am amazed by the way she used to lose weight, without taking any commercial weight loss plan or pill, etc, it is au natural! Although it needs sometimes to achieve but it is au natural! I am also ashamed when I heard about her story, I always telling people I want to lose weight but never do it in action. I am very proud of her, she has got a very strong determination which has made her to achieve what she want today.

As stated in the picture, this photo was taken in February 2009.

Photo of Shirley, taken in Dec 2011 when she visited Belfast again, in her favourite shop Avoca
After 11 months effort............
This is she, my dearest friend Shirley! What a big change isn't it?

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Creamy Chicken Curry

I used to cook more curry dishes during winter, I need some comfort food to keep myself warm. We had a mild winter last year and I hope it would be the same this year. I hope and I hope...but it was already started to snow two weeks ago even though just for a day, and the weather is getting colder and colder these days, and it is only autumn now.... I am not particular like winter, besides shorter daylight, I tend to get sick during winter and I am coughing.

Ok, back to the topic today. I found this chicken curry recipe from Wendy's Table for 2.....or more. It is relatively easy to prepare, with easy available ingredient, I can get a yummy creamy chicken curry. I used to cook chicken curry by using paste. I always think cooking it from scratch need plenty of time to prepare, it actually not. Besides I always struggle to find those ingredients I need. Well, I am living in a small town with a small asian shop, not every ingredients are available here, sometimes need to wait for weeks or months for some ingredients to be back in stock. Wendy's recipe is quick and easy, please hop over to her blog for original recipe.

Creamy Chicken Curry

Recipe adapted from Table for 2...or more
6-8 chicken thighs
1 tsp salt
4 large shallots, finely chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 lemon grass (4 inch from based, lightly smashed)
50g chicken curry powder
1 tsp of hot curry powder
200ml thick coconut milk
12 small new potatoes
10 tofu puffs
Salt for seasoning

1) Wash the chicken thighs, trim of excess fat and cut into smaller pieces, marinate with 1 tsp of salt, leave it for 30 minutes.
2) Heat up oil in a pot, put in chopped garlic and shallots, fry until fragrant.
3) Add in chicken curry powder and curry powder, fry until fragrant. Toss in lemon grass.
4) Put in chicken and fry for 4-5 minutes. Add water to the pot, just sufficient to cover the chicken. Bring to boil.
5) Put in potatoes and tofu puffs, cook for 5 minutes. Cover the pot with lid and continue to cook with low heat until potatoes are tender.
6) Add in coconut milk and season with salt.
7) Dish up and serve.

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Pandan Kaya (Coconut Jam)

I had been wanting to make my own kaya for so long but the cooking and stirring time always put me off. I can't really find a good kaya in the asian supermarket here, they are either too sweet or lack of ''fragrant'' (one should know what I mean if you are a kaya lover). I am glad I found this easy kaya recipe while reading Sonia's blog. She used the double boiling method instead of cooking it in the pot from low heat. There is no long standing, cooking and stirring, you just need to give it a light stir about every 5 minutes until you get the desired thickness. Well, no long standing or cooking means you do not need to stand in front of the hob to keep stirring it for 2 hours to avoid any lumps and burn, however, you do need about an hour to get to the desired thickness. Since you only need to stir it for about  every 5 minutes, you spare some time to do other tasks e.g. to wash dishes, cutting or chopping vege, preparing meal, etc. I like this method, it is easy and still produce a smooth and tasty kaya. You can spread it on toast or as a filling for cake or bun or pau etc, I prefer it on toast with butter. Ops, I should have taken a picture of how I make my kaya on toast!

See what I have got here...

Pandan Kaya (Coconut Jam)
Recipe adapted from Nasi Lemak Lover

3 large eggs
250g sugar
350ml coconut milk
4 pandan leaves (screwpine leaves)

1) Pandan Juice:- Cut pandan leaves into small pieces. Put it into blender with coconut milk, blend well. Strain and discard pulp.
2) In a mixing bowl, put in eggs and lightly beat with a fork. Add in sugar, lightly stir till sugar dissolves.
3) Add Step 1) into 2). Mix well and strain the mixture into a stainless steel mixing bowl.
4) Fill a pot with about 1/3 water, bring it to a boil then turn to low heat. Place the mixing bowl into the bowl of boiling water (see here), stir kaya mixture once every 5 minutes (roughly)
5) Continue to cook it until the desired thickness achieved. Remove the mixture from hob and leave it to cool. That's it, kaya is done!
6) Store the cooled kaya into container and keep it in the fridge.

-Strain the mixture to prevent any lumps and to produce a smoother mixture.
- Stainless steel or high heat resistant bowl is preferable as you need to cook the mixture over boiling water for some time until the desired thickness of kaya achieved.
- The shelf life of kaya varies on the weather and humidity. I store them in 2 small jar, one keep in the fridge and the other at room temperature. I finished the room temperature kaya in a week and it was still good when I finished it. The kaya in the fridge can be kept for ~2weeks. It is recommended not to make the kaya in bulk and finish it as earlier as possible to enjoy its freshness and fragrance.