Saturday, August 29, 2009

Sush: I hate to waste good weather

Due to the looming exams, I can't go out and enjoy the sunshine and breeze on this perfect late summer's day. So, instead of wasting it completely, I took a break and produced a small batch of cookies and muffins. :)

Butter Pecan Cookies. I've recently had an addiction to anything that contains pecan nuts. Throw a small dash of them into your cereal, salad, etc and it just wows the whole dish even more!

Butter Pecan Cookies Recipe


3/4 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup sugar, plus more for coating
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour


1 Preheat oven to 350°. On a baking sheet, toast pecans until fragrant, about 6 minutes. Let cool completely; finely chop.
2 With an electric mixer, cream butter for about a minute. Add 1/3 cup sugar and cream until light, about 1 minute more. Beat in vanilla, salt, and flour, scraping down sides of bowl, just until dough comes together. Fold in pecans.

3 Separate dough into 12 pieces; squeeze dough to shape into balls. Roll in sugar. Place, 3 inches apart, on a baking sheet.

4 Gently flatten with the bottom of a glass (reshape sides if necessary). Sprinkle with sugar.

5 Bake until golden brown, rotating sheet halfway through, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle with more sugar. Cool cookies on a wire rack.

Blueberry muffins which are perfect for a summer's day such as this. :) The recipes I choose cannot take more than 15-20 minutes to prepare as I usually throw everything together in a rush. Plus, I bake under time constrained circumstances. Lol. Hope you enjoy making them as much as I did!

Blueberry Muffins (taken from


  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup butter, cubed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease muffin cups or line with muffin liners.
  2. Combine 1 1/2 cups flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt and baking powder. Place vegetable oil into a 1 cup measuring cup; add the egg and enough milk to fill the cup. Mix this with flour mixture. Fold in blueberries. Fill muffin cups right to the top, and sprinkle with crumb topping mixture.
  3. To Make Crumb Topping: Mix together 1/2 cup sugar, 1/3 cup flour, 1/4 cup butter, and 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon. Mix with fork, and sprinkle over muffins before baking.
  4. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until done.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Sush: Bistro desserts anyone?

So I was in London last Friday evening to meet up with one of my girlfriends who is in the country on holiday for a whole month with her family. (I know, how lucky!) There are actually pretty few of my old high school clique who either came to study in the UK or have stayed back and are now working here. So when I heard she was visiting, it was like a small delight of home visiting. We had dinner with a couple of the guys who are also still here.

After, Mars, Vic, Leanne and I met up for dessert/late dinner (for them) at Browns in Covent Garden. Its a bar slash bistro which is actually pretty cozy. Been there for brunch once too which was pretty decent! Not as good as my two favourite brunch haunts in London though (more on those places later on). Twas good to see them again after so long. I've actually been cooped up at home everyday, and even over the weekends as my exams are in 1 week. It was a refreshing evening to say the least! :) And I haven't had decadent dessert in a long, long time.

Raspberry and chocolate brownie with creamy vanilla ice cream.

Crabmeat spread on bruschetta and rocket. Yums! :)

Ok am peckish again...

BITE ME is an expresshun!

funny pictures of cats with captions

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Mars: Molton Chocolate Babycakes

Awesome recipe by Nigella Lawson! Sush used to make this all the time (well not all the time, only when I make puppy eyes) in Warwick! I didn't have all the ingredients just now, so i tweaked the recipe here and there and it turn out looking absolutely yummifying!

50g soft unsalted butter, plus a little more for greasing
350g best dark chocolate [ I didn't have enough at home and was too lazy to go buy, so I sacrificed some of my Milo~ My babycakes has a malty smell to it too! ]
150g caster sugar
4 large eggs, beaten with a pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
50g plain flour
6 individual pudding moulds, buttered
Baking parchment

1. Unless you are making these up in advance, preheat the oven to 200ºC/gas mark 6,putting in a baking sheet at the same time. Lay 3 of the moulds on a sheet of doubled baking parchment. Draw round them, remove, and then cut out the discs as marked. Press them all into the base of the tins. [ I didn't have any pudding moulds, so I used my muffin tray - yes~ it came out muffin like~ but the centre was still gooey and molton! ]

2. Melt the chocolate and let it cool slightly. Cream together the butter and sugar, and gradually beat in the eggs and salt, then the vanilla. Now add the flour, and when all is smoothly combined scrape in the cooled chocolate, blending it to a smooth batter.

3. Divide the batter between the 6 moulds, quickly whip the baking sheet out of the oven, arrange the little tins on it and replace in the oven. Cook for 10–12 minutes (the extra 2 minutes will be needed if the puddings are fridge-cold when you start) and as soon as you take them out of the oven, tip out these luscious babycakes onto small plates or shallow bowls. Serve these with whipped double cream, the same unwhipped in a jug, crème fraîche, crème anglaise or ice

I am a self confessed chocoholic and one of these little babies can just cure that craving for a WEEK!!

Happy Ramadhan everyone!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Sush: Top Chef

This is for all you foodies out there! Do take note if you're looking for something to fill in those evenings whilst the other US TV shows are still on their summer break.

I've been an avid follower of Top Chef since 2007 when my friend Foong introduced it to me. Its a cooking competition made up of 14 chefs in the USA who applied to participate in the competition. One chef gets eliminated each week, until the last 2 or 3 chefs remain and they have the biggest cook-off to fight for the title of Top Chef.

What really got me hooked was the creation of such spectacular and creative dishes. With challenges being thrown in every 'Elimination Round' that the chefs have to work with, it forces the chefs to think on their feet and be flexible. Of course, in every reality show, there's drama and always that one annoying dude.

Recently just this summer, the producers came up with Top Chef Masters which is a spin-off from the original show. This was only 10 episodes and I found this so much more enjoyable because:

a) It was all for charity - the winner master chef would get $100,000 for the charity of choice.

b) These were no amateur or sous chefs. These were veterans in the industry, made up of Michelin star restaurant owners, and top reviewed chefs in the country. Most of them were also past guest judges from the original show.

Because it was all in the good name of charity, the show was more relaxed and many more laughs went around during the actual competition itself. Its also amazing how these chefs have such respect for each other. And omg, the FOOD they created - the FOOD was OUT.OF.THIS.WORLD.

Click here if you want to find out more. :) There are currently 5 seasons of Top Chef and the 6th season has just started.

This definitely gets my tummy rumbling right before I go to bed and also makes me aspire to own my own bakery one day.

Jade: Bitemysalmon

Hoisin baked salmon. Marinated overnight so the flavour of the sauces, chinese wine and smashed garlic is fully absorbed by the beautiful coral slabs of fish. Bake at 180 degrees for exactly 8 minutes. Slice through the caramelized the juices flow out of the fork tender flesh....feel it melt like butter on your tongue.......savour...mmm

Friday, August 21, 2009

Jade: Bitemylittlesweets

There is something magical about Chinese New Year. Families coming together from every corner of the world, piping hot steamboats laden with goodness, shiny red packets with gold writing...the wonderful pieces of paper hidden within...hello chanel!..The smoky scent of firecrackers early in the morning, looking out your window and seeing a sea of red confetti on the ground...remnants of the neighbour's efforts to rid themselves of bad luck...however illegal their efforts may be;P Having said that, if the afore mentioned neighbour's husband would stop walking around in his boxers with his pot belly hanging to his knees, maybe business would improve, firecrackers or not...I'm just saying..

But I digress. For me, the real magic happens...*drumroll* the kitchen. To be fair, real magic also happens when I see the perfect dress, hand over my shiny credit card in exchange for a shiny shopping bag containing my reason for living and I feel a little tingle down my spine...hello, have you seen my attention span? I seem to have misplaced it....Where was I...My favourite thing about my favourite time of year HAS to be the hours of creaming butter, melting chocolate, the satisfying pop everytime I open a new jar of vanilla bean paste...the smell! Oh the smell of gorgeous little cookies as they're turning a delicate golden brown......and my god...the taste....

Buttery crust that yields to the slightest pressure... revealing sticky, caramelized pineapple ...not too sweet...with a hint of cinnamon....

Flaky shortbread spiced with fragrant green tea...pleasantly bitter..balanced by a sprinkling of crunchy crystals of sugar ..

Colourful balls of ghee and toasted flour that melt in the mouth...milky and rich..Crunchy cornflakes....bits of raisins...a sophisticated combination of sweet and salty..mellow vanilla undertones........

Dainty slices of kek batik, fudgy and chocolatey....the subtle fruitiness of peaches cutting through the glorious richness of cream cheese, paired with the softest sponge....airy layers brushed with rum, finished with silky caramel mousse......

Can you say heaven?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Mars: Strawberry & Banana Muffins

I think I'm definitely one of those people who don't really plan what to eat in advance and I tend to make things with whatever ingredients that's left in the kitchen! I had 4 bananas to finish up because they were going all squishy and mu strawberries were starting to look mushy.

And whilst foodblog surfing last night, I stumbled across an easy peasy lemon squeezy recipe for Strawberry and Banana Muffins! And because I'm lazy and not as meticulous and brilliant as the other 3 (well 2, (@_@) << --- this one makes a mean omelette) in the kitchen, I made it even simpler and less hassle.

Strawberry & Banana Muffins from

- 1/2 cup (113g) unsalted butter [I used olive spread, because I was too lazy to walk to Tesco for butter in the morning]

- 3/4 cup (160g) light brown sugar [I didn't bother, again because I don't have light brown sugar and am too lazy to walk to Tesco to get sugar in the morning - substituted it with 1 good squeeze of honey]

- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 large ripe bananas, mashed [I had 3 medium sized ones and they were not mashed to a pulp - mash a bit bit only]

- 1 cup (240g) fresh strawberries, cut into bite sized pieces
- 2 1/4 cups (295g) all purpose flour [Again, only had self-raising flour - worked okay]
- 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda [Didn't have any and again, I was too lazy]
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon - 1/2 tsp salt

- Preheat oven to 350 (F) or 177 (C); Rack in centre of oven; Line muffin pan with paper liners or spray
- Melt butter in saucepan, set aside [Didn't bother - had soft olive spread and creamed it with a bit of honey]
- In bowl, whisk brown sugar, eggs, vanilla extract and mashed banana [Soaked the strawberries and slightly mashed bananas in honey; mixed the other wet ingredients into the creamed mixture; folded in strawberries and banana]
- In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients; sift; fold in berries; add wet ingredients [Add wet ingredients to the mix and stir until combined]
- Divide evenly into 12 cups; 20-25 minutes [Add half of the batter to all 12 cups first, then put in jam - I made me own blackberry & strawberry jam 2 days ago - to the middle then cover it with the rest of the batter, a method I have pleasantly found out keeps the muffins moist for people who don't like dry muffins]

Serve to happy people with sore arms!

The End.
[Easy peasy lemon squeezy!]

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Sush: Custard goodness

If its one thing I truly enjoy baking its these golden babies right here. :)
Cream puffs! These are not like the ones you get in your local bakery; those are filled with cream most of the time. These have actual custard which I feel tastes so much better than just cream. If you're gonna put the calories in your mouth, might as well put better tasting ones right? ;)

Its a joy, using a piping tube to lay the batter out on the baking tray and see them rise, turn golden and fluffy in the oven.
The best part is when you get to pipe the custard into the puff itself! Again, using a piping tube (just because its easier that way), you fill each individual puff with the custard.

Once the puff is filled...pop it into your mouth. Trust me, nothing gets better than the feeling of a warm cream puff filled with a warm custard center in your mouth. ;) Truly almost orgasmic/food heaven.

Warning though, cream puffs aren't the easiest things to make. The custard has to be at the right temperature when stirring, otherwise when you add the custard powder in, lumps will form. (Yes, I make my custard from scratch.) And well, the whole recipe essentially takes a lot of time and patience! This is why my Dad only gets to eat them when I'm back home for the holidays. Mum's too lazy to make them. ;)

The end result more than makes up for the time and effort put in. Maybe I'm addicted to that feeling of the warm custard oozing onto my palate. Hee. Pity though that these take a while to make, but they're pretty much gone in 24 hours!

Jade: Bitemypasta

Close your eyes and picture wait. if you close your eyes you won't be able to read what I want you to picture...ok read this first and close your eyes after...bah..I so clever. medic konon:P

Imagine the sexy sizzle when finely chopped garlic and curry leaves first hit a searing hot drink in the heady aroma that is starting to fill your kitchen as you spoon over thick, lush curry and tomato paste..
bits of chinese sausage start jumping in the throw in perfectly cooked fusilli, coating every groove of the little spirals with amber gravy...a splash of pungent fish sauce...and then that first bite..Salty, spicy, with a light twang...the firm bite of al-dente pasta, crunchy prawns, gorgeously soft minced beef...and the subtle sweetness from the shitake mushrooms...sigh...i suddenly dont mind starting surgery tomorrow :)

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Mars: Glorious Food! (indeed!)

On most nights, when I get bored or when I have a lot of work to do, I'll find various ways to procrastinate and just NOT do the work I so desperately need to finish. When I was younger and living at home (mind you I left home at 13), I would sneak downstairs to the fridge and ninja the desserts away - and my waistline is now paying the price. In more recent times, I surf the net for recipes and restaurant reviews by bloggers who I find more honest about how the feel about what they eat! Now, after living away from home for so long, and after so many trial and errors, I suppose I do cook and bake okay and so far so good - no one has died from eating anything that I've made.

Though not a lot can compare to home-cooked food when one has been away for a very long time, there are places in the world that can come quite close to satisfying that yearn (rumble) in one's stomach. And for people with a stricter diet (ie. halal, vegetarian, kosher etc.), often there are no problems to find good food no matter where you are.

I'd like to think that where you eat would have a significant impact on the taste of food - which is prolly why to most people, home-cooked meals are the best in the world when one takes in the company, the scenery and the love that goes into whatever that is placed on the table in front of you.

So here's to great food, brilliant company, beautiful places and courage to always try something new!
Waffles with Clotted Cream Ice Cream and Strawberries
Baggy Too @ Croyde Bay

Jade: Bitemycinnamonroll

I never used to enjoy food. I picked at everything on my plate, refused to eat fish, carrots, cucumber, cilantro, dumpling skin..and once, when I was 11, I spent 3 hours crying in the kitchen, holding a match because i refused to light it to cook my maggi.
And then I left home, and for the first time, I realized how much I had taken good food for
granted. On the odd weekend when we were 'allowed' out of boarding school, away from chicken puff daddy and ktj fried chicken, i gorged on the wonders that were roti boy, piping hot peking duck pizza and mee goreng mamak. I even went to church just so I could have the deliciously savoury wantan meen from the coffeeshop downstairs. dont judge me:(
The thing about good food is, it doesn't have to be expensive nor does it have to be served on the best china in a 5 star hotel. Some of the most fantastic meals I've had have been at the rankest places ever, where stall owners proudly proclaim they dont wash their dishes: "just dip in hot water and wipe wipe only! very fast one!" I swear this is why people talk so much at mamak stalls. It's to distract themselves from the fighting rats next to the drain where they wash the fishballs.
The best food however, to me anyway, has to come from my own kitchen. There is
nothing quite like the smell of freshly baked cinnamon rolls and hot steaming coffee and the anticipation of cutting into a beautifully risen roll...that first sharp crackle before the crust gives way to reveal a warm, pillowy centre...oozing melted sugar and gooey raisins...
Sh*t.. now i'm hungry. Somebody feed me.
Anything but carrots, cucumber, cilantro and dumpling skin. I still don't like them. Bite me.

Sush: First quickie - Red Velvet Cupcakes

I actually can't believe I didn't think of this earlier. This idea came alive thanks to Mars who I believe got a brainwave whilst she and Jade were restaurant hopping in London a few weeks ago. :)
There are just so many food blogs already in the blogsphere.. so we hope this won't be another one along the trail for you/boring.

What we agreed upon was that this space would be filled with our discovery of eats, old and new, from our travels and current location. Also included are our baking attempts and adventures of re-creating cakes, cookies, cupcakes, and the lot. Of course, not forgetting the amazing delights when we're back home!

So here, one of my attempts was making a huge recipe of Red Velvet Cupcakes last December for Christmas. You know when you just want to give something as a good gesture and kind token of love? It was afterall, the season of joy, love and celebration. So I made these babies and bought cases, plastic wrapping and ribbons to make them presentable.

Nyums. :)
Although until today, my Mum will still not try Red Velvets. Not even the ones from Hummingbird! She says maintains they're too red for her liking.