Sunday 31 May 2009

Steam Pumpkin Mantou - 金瓜馒头

Mantou(馒头) often referred to as "humbao" or Chinese steamed bun which is originating in China. It is made with wheat flour, water and leavening agents, they are similar in nutrition and eating qualities to the white bread of the West.

Recently, my mum has being into Mantou making with one of my son's kiddy's friend mummy. They will gather together at least once in a week to experiment with their Mantou making. So after tasting their delicious homemade Mantou, I am also interested in joining the fun of making it. For mine, I added some extra wolfberries to enhance the taste as well as a the texture.

Ingredients: (makes about 10)
250g Plain Flour
1 Teaspoon Active Dry Yeast
40ml Lukewarm Water
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
5 Tablespoons Caster Sugar
200g Pumpkin, skin removed
2 Tablespoon Wolfberries, cut into halves
1/2 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil

1. Sift the plain flour and baking powder together in a big bowl, then stir in the caster sugar till combined.
2. Remove the outer skin of the pumpkin, cut into small cubes then rinse it with water and place in a microwave safe bowl and cook on High heat together with a cup of water for about 5 minutes. (Stop 2 minutes in between and give it a stir so that it will cook evenly)
3. Use a fork or food masher to mash the pumpkin cubes into paste form then set aside for later use.
4. Add the dry yeast into the lukewarm water and give it a quick stir then set aside for about 5 minutes till bubbles appeared(refer to the picutre above).
5. Next slowly add in the yeast water into the flour mixture and sitr using a pair of chopstick, then follow by the mashed pumpkin and stir till they form a soft dough.
6. Rub some oil on your hand then give the dough a quick knead till well combine.
7. Set the dough aside in a lightly flour/oil bowl and let it proof for about 20 - 30 minutes until it double in size.
8. Divide the dough into 2 or 3 portions then on a lightly floured work surface, flatten each portion into a rectangular shape shown like that picture below, sprinkle some chopped wolfberries then roll it up lengthwise into an oblong shape then cut them into equal portion.
9. Place each shaped portion on a piece of greaseproof paper, top with some extra wolfberries, then arrange on the steamer rack and steam over medium heat for about 8 - 10 minutes depend on the size.
10. Repeat for the rest of the portion of dough and steam accordingly. ( I made about 10 Mantou with the size of about 3" before steaming)

a) Lukewarm is about 40 degree Celsius
b) The pumpkin dough will be very stick when handling, so do not worry. You can wet your hand some oil before handling the dough for easy kneading.
c) You might need to cook the pumpkin for about 3 - 5 minutes more before it will be soften depend on the power of your microwave.

This is my homemade Steam Pumpkin & Wolfberries Mantou which is freshly out from the steamer. It really taste great and different for a chance in the usual Pandan or Plain Mantou that is sold in the supermarket.Posted by Picasa

Thursday 21 May 2009

Scramble Egg With Tomato

Are you one of those tomato lover who eats any kind of tomato that is on the shelf of the supermarket? Or you will just pick your choice of those that you love like cherry tomatoes or vineyard tomatoes or ?

Tomato fruit is classified as a berry. As a true fruit, it develops from the ovary of the plant after fertilization, its flesh comprising the pericarp walls. Tomato is also an excellent source of Vitamin C and a good source of Vitamin A. So if you are trying to get one of your kids or love one to incorporate some tomato into their dish. You can try one of this Scramble Egg With Tomato serve in tomato cup as party food breakfast side dish.Posted by Picasa

Ingredients: (serve 2)
2 Medium Size Red Tomato
1 Medium Egg, lightly beaten
1 Tablespoon Milk/Water
1/2 Tablespoon of Chopped Tomato
1 Tablespoon of Chopped Spring Onion
1/2 Tablespoon of Thai Sweet Chili Sauce

1. Cut the tomatoes, horizontal into halve and carefully scoop out the seeds in it. Pat the inside dry with kitchen paper towel and set them aside.
2. Take 1 of the tomato cup and chopped them into cubes.
3. Whisk the egg with either water or milk until well combined.
4. Drizzle some Olive oil onto a small preheat non-stick pan and add in the chopped tomatoes, give it a few stir until fragrant then scatter in the chopped spring onion.
5. Next pour in the egg mixture and cook the scramble egg accordingly, using a spoon to stir the mixture occasionally.
6. Lastly stir in the Thai chili sauce mixture and give it a quick stir until it combined, fill the egg mixture into the prepared tomato cups and serve as together with some cut fruits as side dish.

a) You can replace the Thai Sweet Chili Sauce with Tomato Sauce for kid's version.
b) You can also scatter some extra shredded cheese onto the egg tomato cups and put it into the toaster oven of about 3 minutes or so until the cheese started to melt.

Monday 18 May 2009

Baked Pasta With Bolognese Sauce & Cheese

Baked Pasta is always one of my favourite Quick and Easy dish in the list. Sometime I also baked this in in small foil tin shown above and packed it as lunch to work. It's very simple dish and yet full of vibrant texture and taste.

For this baked pasta, I prepared it with some seasoned mince meat, pre-cooked elbow macaroni, chopped brown onion and parsley, sliced assorted mushrooms and some shredded mozzarella cheese. In this recipe I use a few tablespoons of LEGGO'S PASTA SAUCE - BOLOGNESE (click on the LINK to see the sample and range of available sauce) to act as the sauce based for the pasta. If you don't prefer tomato base sauce, you can always swap it with white sauce like Carbonara.

Since I am sharing this baked pasta with my colleagues for lunch. I decided to fill the cooked pasta into individual small foil tin and top it with some extra chopped parsley and a generous amount of shredded cheese. (so sorry I won't be sharing the details of this recipe because it will be feature in the recipe column of Parents World which I am contributing the recipes on)

Pop them into a toaster oven for about 5 minutes or less to melt the cheese and you can served them hot or warm with some extra chili flake or parmesan cheese....... Posted by Picasa

Tuesday 12 May 2009

Avocado ~ Egg ~ Tomato

This is my combination of appetiser meal, Avocado Vs Egg Vs Tomato. I simply just love the taste of Avocado, when this is in season I'll always have it in my fruit basket. I love to eat it with plain yogurt, or blend it with some fresh milk and honey and serve it as a health afternoon snack or after meal refreshment with a few ice cubes.

There are so many ways and ideas that you can eat your avocado with. And also high avocado intake has been shown to have an effect on blood serum cholesterol levels and it is also rich in B vitamins, as well as vitamin E.

In this appetiser, I used 1 avocado, 1 hard boiled egg and 2 ripe medium size tomato to come out with 3 different taste and texture of the combination.

Mashed Avocado & Egg Salad
~ Mashed half of the hard-boiled egg with about 2 to 3 slices of avocado and serve it in a tomato cup.

Avocado Slices With Plain Yogurt
~ Arrange some avocado slices on plate and top with a dollar of plain Greek yogurt(or you can choose yogurt of your favour).

This is great to serve as a an presentable appetiser when you have guest around the house. You can top with with other fresh fruits of your choice or you can use tomato or cucumber or any combination that you prefer.Posted by Picasa

~ Cut the avocado into half, carefully scoop out the fruit and leave the shell in shape.
~ Place half of the hard-boiled egg in the middle and filled the space of the shelf with avocado & tomato cubes.
~ Drizzle with some BBQ or Thai Chilli sauce before serving.