All posts filed under: Sweets

Coconut and Gula Melaka Agar Agar (Jellies)

I grew up eating jellies.  What about you? My mom loves making jelly when we were young.  That’s why jelly brings back wonderful sweet memories to me.  It was one of those cold sweet treats that my sisters and I really enjoyed eating when we were young, especially in hot hot Malaysia. We would sit on the kitchen bench and just watched mom do wonders with colours and mould.   So fascinated by the beautiful shapes when mom unmold the jelly that we thought it was magic! In fact, the shape that I loved the most comes in a certain koi fish mould that my mom always used. The mould has many complicated layers but it was so colourful and beautiful.  So beautiful that it was always made centrepiece when we celebrated special birthdays or Chinese New Year.  On other days, mom would treat us with sweet bitesize jellies that comes in various shapes like the star, heart, flower shapes … endless! The coconut and gula melaka (dark palm sugar) agar agar is a popular Asian dessert.  This dessert interestingly, is supposed to set in two different …

strawberries and cream

Strawberries & Cream with Wonton Crisps

Hi everyone, I hope you had a wonderful weekend so far! Weekends are so precious, don’t you think so? For today, let’s talk leftovers. Hmmm, this is the part I always NOT like to have, especially for things that are “once opened, must be used within the next 5 days” and blah blah blah, says the wording on the packaging.  Take wonton wrappers for example – the smallest packet comes in like a hundred pieces and while I adore wontons, making a hundred of them at one time is not what I would do for just a family of 3 🙂 Why don’t they come in smaller packaging? But wait, interestingly, these wonton wrappers are so versatile that you can eat them as savory or sweet.  To eat as snack – simply slather with melted butter, sprinkle with icing sugar and bake them till golden brown and crispy.  Voila, you have an easy peasy snack and it tastes bloody good too 🙂  And that solves the mystery of what to do with leftover wonton wrappers.  So, remember, don’t throw them away! Secondly, if you want …

mango and sweet sticky rice

Mango and Sweet Coconut Sticky Rice

I love the farmers’ markets – to see, touch and smell all that seasonal fresh produce by our Australian producers is a great experience.  Most of the time, I’ll come back with more produce than what I had planned for 🙂  During my recent visit to the farmers’ market, guess what I came back with? One of the pleasures of being a home cook is that there is no limit to what you can cook with fresh seasonal produce.  So, with my freshly bought mangoes, I decided to bring Thailand home with one of the most iconic Thai sweet desserts that my family have always loved and enjoyed. “Who would have thought that sweet mangoes are perfect match made in heaven with savoury glutinous rice?  That, of course, came from the brilliant minds of food-loving Thais.”  You and I know that it is easy to make this dessert.  Mango, glutinous rice, coconut cream are basically the 3 main ingredients you need.  Because there are so few ingredients, quality of course, cannot be compromised.  You’ll need to get your hands on the sweetest …

Nashi pear with hasma

Double-boiled Nashi Pear with Hasma

Hi everyone … I’M BACK!!! Apologies for the silence – I just came back from a well-deserved family break in sunny Gold Coast.  My lil’ one made me promise that I cannot touch or let alone even go near to my laptop during the holiday. Mind you, 9 days of theme parks and water parks was more than enough for the adults but it was a lot of fun 🙂 Today I’d like to share with you a Chinese delicacy which is common to us but may be rare (and perhaps a wee bit gross and unappetising) to some of you.  Hasma is an ingredient that we use in many Chinese soupy hot/cold desserts and considered to be a luxury ingredient.  Because it’s rare and expensive, in the past, this ingredient is only privileged to the Chinese Emperor and Empress. So, what exactly is hasma? “Hasma comes from the fatty tissue near the fallopian tubes of Snow frogs known as Xueha, from the Northern part of China.   They’re prized for their health benefits and traditionally known to treat respiratory issues, to gain porcelain-clear skin and for the women …

coconut panna cotta

Coconut & Kaffir Lime Panna Cotta with Strawberry & Lime Syrup and Happy Father’s Day

Let me rejoice by welcoming all my beloved readers to Spring and Father’s Day Down Under-style.  *clap*clap* To be honest with you, Melbourne has a notorious reputation for its changeable weather.  If you are lucky, you may experience 4 seasons in a day. *Rewind* back 2 years ago, to a beautiful hot summer day in St Kilda, a seaside town not far away from the CBD.  That day was a perfect summer day – sunny clear blue skies and gentle sea breeze.  What a great way to spend our time out door, don’t you think? However, barely an hour has passed, that summer breeze turned chilly.  I looked down towards my shadow and they were disappearing quickly.  Up in the sky, dark clouds quickly took over the clear blue sky.  It felt like an armageddon’s coming our way (so like the movie!).  What was supposed to be a beautiful sunny day has turned dark, gloomy, windy and cold.  Temperature dipped by 15 points in just 30 quick minutes.  Suddenly, it was winter again! So, that sums up how quirky Melbourne’s …

Green tea panna cotta

Green Tea Panna Cotta with Chocolate Soil

I love panna cotta.  Just like the crackle of a good creme brûlée, a good panna cotta must possess the dance of the panna cotta.  That means, when you jiggle your plate from side to side, this delicate dessert wobbles beautifully on the plate. Last weekend, I challenged my self to create the dance of the panna cotta at home.  Imagine how surprised I was to find out that it’s actually so easy and quick to make this dessert.  It was a remarkable feeling.  As you probably realised, I don’t make a lot of desserts – most of the recipes that I make at home are savoury.  I love desserts but I’m just not good at making them 😦 For my first attempt, I added matcha green tea, which gives a subtle tea-like pungency to this dreamy, luscious and creamy dessert.  Being a simple dessert, it is after all a basic cream pudding, and by following the right measurements, it is easy to get all the elements right. ” Firstly, the correct calibration between the gelatine and the dairy enables the …

Coconut ice cream

Easy 3-ingredient Coconut Ice-Cream

Last weekend, lil’ one had a sleep over birthday party at her friend’s place.  Guess what these two old folks do? We went for a dinner date at a Thai restaurant by the sea which we haven’t done in a while.  It was fun and enjoyable, in addition to good food that ended with a refreshingly good dessert. After that night, I couldn’t get that dessert out of my head.  So, I decided to make the coconut ice cream at home.  Adam Liaw’s simplest coconut ice cream recipe only use 3 ingredients – coconut milk, cream and caster sugar.  And it was a WOWZER! Seriously, it’s really easy peesy and you had better believe it 🙂 3-ingredient Coconut Ice-Cream (adapted from Adam Liaw’s Asian After Work)  Serves 700 ml Ingredients: 400 ml coconut milk (use a high quality brand) 300 ml thickened cream 1/2 cup caster sugar 1 tbsp shredded coconut, toasted 1 fresh coconut, drained and chopped in half, to serve (optional) Method: 1. Mix the coconut milk, cream and caster sugar in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer.  Carefully …

kumquat

In Season with Kumquat : How to make Kumquat Compote

Winter season bring lots of goody goodness for citrus lovers.  Last weekend marked the debut of kumquats in the markets. Yup! It’s in season and excitement bubbles within me.   To us, Chinese, kumquat brings good luck and symbolises gold and abundance of wealth.  In cantonese, it literally means gold (kum) fruit (quat). Kumquats are one of the most under-rated citrus fruits.  Perhaps, it takes a while to get used to its unique flavours.  You see, unlike the other citrus, the skin is edible and sweet, while the juices are tart with a hint of bitterness.  A treat to winter – kumquats can be eaten as it is (like a fruit) or cooked in sugar & spices or preserve in salt.  As much as I like kumquat, I much prefer to cook or preserve them. “The flavours are very intense – almost made me cry when I tasted – and they are called the tears of shock s-a-t-i-s-f-a-c-t-i-o-n”  For this delicious compote – the kumquats are simmered with sugar syrup and spices.  Thus bringing out the best blend …

Milo ice cream

The Best (best) Homemade Milo Ice-cream ever

There are a few things in this world that can still excite me in a child-like way, like opening birthday presents, watching Disney cartoons (yep! I still cry when I watch The Little Mermaid and Beauty & The Beast) and unexpectedly Milo.  It is one of those experiences and memories that reminds us of sweet sweet nostalgic childhood fun times that doesn’t disappear even as we aged. So, what’s your story? For me, I’ll start by saying that I really love Milo.  And no, I’m not kidding you.  It’s Milo, alright! Sweet, heavenly Milo.  I practically worshipped Milo when I was a kid.  We, Malaysians, not only drink Milo as beverage, we eat Milo as snacks (when our parents aren’t watching us).  Any Malaysians can vouch for that…really. “Yup, big big tablespoons of powdered milo into the mouth.  We chew and chew until they dissolve behind our throats.  One of the best way to enjoy Milo and it’s super duper Y.U.M.” Milo is very popular in Malaysia.  During my school days many (many) years ago, they used to have …

Sweet ‘o’ Sweetness Lychee Granita

The big V-day is just 1 sleep away and if you’ve not planned anything for that special someone, then you’d better think of something and get it done quickly. Here’s an idea for you, watch a movie like the highly anticipated 50 shades of grey and then followed by a romantic home-cook candle light dinner. If that’s too much of hard work, then may I suggest to just skip everything and go straight to icy sweet dessert like this lychee granita.  It’s easy and fast to make and goes really well with champagne 🙂 Lychee Granita (adapted from Will Ricker’s Eastern & Oriental Cookbook) Serves 4 Ingredients: 1 can lychee (576g) 60 g caster sugar 100 ml water juice of 1 lime stalks of mint leaves, for garnish Method: 1. Combine sugar and water in a saucepan and heat gently until sugar dissolves.  Once the sugar has dissolved, bring to boil with high heat.  Then turn the heat down, and gently simmer until a light caramel syrup forms.  Remove and set aside to cool. 2. Pour the can …

Sweet corn ice cream

Spring Delight Sweet Corn Ice-Cream

Bye bye Winter and hello Spring.  Another cycle of Spring has come and gone … and that’s how long I’ve been writing for Burp!  Time really passes so quickly. I remembered at the same time last year, I was (am) having a bad bad reaction to spring – what we call as hay fever.  The non-stop sneezing, itchy red eyes and lack of sleep makes me look like I just came out from The Walking Dead – now, that’s a good look for Halloween, except that it’s not Halloween yet. Spring also welcome lots of fresh spring produce.  Even Bubbles had his curly apricot hair shortened  Now, he looks like a mongrel, but I still love him lots and he’s still my BFF whenever I work at home.  As for me, I need a fair bit of grooming myself. Winter has dragged me down down and down – so, it’s time for me to pick myself up 🙂 Do you love sweet corn?  I do, in fact, I’m a sweet corn addict – everything about sweet corn, from savoury to sweet. …

Vanilla bean ice cream

Creamy Vanilla Bean Ice-Cream

You all know that I’ve recently got an ice-cream maker! Yay baby – an ice-cream maker (a big strike through on my wish list).  To honour my new ice-cream maker, I made my lil’ one’s favourite Green Tea ice-cream which, was a huge hit with the family.  Then, hubby made a special request for vanilla ice-cream, the most basic well-loved flavour. My mission has been spelled out clearly.  WHAT? It’s to find a creamy, delicious and very very Vanilla ice-cream recipe to impress my hubby.  I love vanilla ice-cream too.  Good vanilla ice-cream has a simple taste that can’t be masked by any other flavour. I sorted through many recipes but some of them fell short of the creaminess and the very very vanilla flavour I was looking for, until this recipe on will cook for friends, whose recipe was adapted from the ice-cream king himself, David Lebovitz.  I really like the use of good quality vanilla beans as the base – there’s something evocative about vanilla beans that comes from their beautiful perfume smell and exotic flavour, which gets you all dreamy 🙂 …

Green tea ice-cream

Green tea (Matcha) Ice-cream

Ice-cream.  One of the tastiest creation in the world that makes people happy and for some, really really happy.  Since I’ve bought my Cuisinart Ice-cream maker (finally fulfilled one of the items on my wish list and it’s PINK!), I have joined the really really happy people 🙂 I dare say that of all the kitchen equipments that I have bought, this is one of them that I’ll use constantly without being reminded LOL.  Hubby will agree with me on this as he’s given me his order list and that’ll keep my weekends busy the next few weeks 🙂 To grace the opening ceremony of my ice-cream maker, I asked my lil’ one what flavour would she like me to make first.  Her response was green tea (matcha) with a big smile on her face.  I couldn’t agree more because it’s also my favourite flavour too. Authentic-tasting green tea ice-cream is hard to find these days.  Most of the green tea ice-creams I’ve eaten are too creamy and lack that bitterness flavour profile of green tea.  According to Nami from Just …

Steamed pumpkin cake

Steamed Pumpkin Cake with Palm Sugar Caramel

I’m not a huge fan of pumpkin but I was tempted to try this recipe from John McLeay’s The Road to QV because the dessert looks good and very very Asian 🙂   On top of that, I love palm sugar especially the dark palm sugar (aka gula melaka) which is one of the key ingredients in most Malaysian desserts.  Good palm sugar is very aromatic and tastes absolutely sweet to the core. For this recipe, I used the white palm sugar but I would recommend to replace the white palm sugar with dark palm sugar for the sauce as it will be more aromatic. White palm sugar is commonly available from Coles, Woolies in Australia.  Dark palm sugar can be bought from Asian Grocer stores. Don’t be deceived by the presentation of the dish, it actually tastes pretty awesome. Steamed Pumpkin Cake with Palm Sugar Caramel (adapted from The Road to QV)   Serves 4 Ingredients: 700g pumpkin, peeled, steamed and mashed 80g caster sugar 50g white palm sugar, shaved 6 eggs, beaten 250 ml coconut …

Lime Icy Poles

Lime Icy Poles

Recently, I was obsessed with Chin Chin’s cookbook!  If you can see, I have attempted a few impressive recipes from Chef Benjamin Cooper himself.  So proud of myself 🙂  In the original recipe, Benjamin served the pops dipped in toasted rice flakes and sugar mixture but I find that too sweet for my liking, so I omitted it. These popsicles are the perfect zesty way to end a nice meal with friends and family, especially on a super hot day.  So, next time, when the temperature rises, think of Lime Icy Poles, the fourth recipe in Pop Series. Lime Icy Poles (adapted from Benjamin Cooper’s Chin Chin the Book) Makes 12 popsicles  Ingredients: 1/2 cup condensed milk 2 cups milk 3/4 cup lime juice zest of 2 limes pinch of salt Method: 1. Mix the milks, juice and zest in a bowl.  Ensure it’s evenly mixed.  Then add a pinch of salt. 2. Slowly pour the mixture into the popsicle molds – dividing them equally.  Cover the molds and place the sticks into the mold. …

Mango and salted peanut

Mango & Salted Coconut Pop with Crushed Peanut

Weather is still predictably warm.  So, before mango season leave us, I’d better make something good out of it.  I was browsing through the internet and this recipe from The Design Files caught my eye and tastebud.  As you know I love love love mangoes! I also found out that there’s an Artisan Popsicle empire in Sydney run by two talented sisters and is sweeping Sydney by storm!  So, what’s an artisan pop and who’d run a popsicle empire? Beats me. Upon googling more, this phenomenon was started by Adriano Zumbo’s apprentice and an Artisan Pop is simply a homemade, gourmet, fruity (using seasonal fruits) icy pole.  Got it? This is the 3rd instalment of my summer lovin’ Pop Series. Mango & Salted Coconut Popsicle with Crushed Peanut Topping (adapted from Liana Raine’s recipe in The Design Files) Serves 10 Ingredients: 350g mango flesh 350g sugar syrup (see recipe below) 150ml coconut cream 1 tbsp palm sugar, shaved 1/2 tsp salt crushed roasted peanut or roasted shredded coconut Ice Pop mold, to freeze Ice pop sticks …

Watermelon Mint Pop

Watermelon-Mint Popsicles

Say hello to summer, Melbourne.  45 degrees of heatwave this week is not a joke and it’s so hard to bear! I am melting – I would give anything to be in the freezer right now.  My popsicles are melting too – notice the melting ice in the picture? LOL.  It was really hard to photograph ice pop in this weather but speed counts. As promised, here’s another new recipe to enjoy this week.  You can get my first recipe Ribena Longan Popsicles here.  Popsicles bring back sweet memories of my child hood in Malaysia, the weather is so hot that I would wait for Mr Ice Cream on bicycle with funny bell.  With just 10cents on hand, I can buy a cordial popsicle to enjoy. Popsicles are wonderful treat for the whole family and perfect for adults and children of all ages.  Try it, I’m sure you’ll like it.  For no apparent reason, watermelon and mint combination is a match made in heaven. Watermelon-Mint Popsicles Serves 6 Ingredients: 5 cups diced watermelon (make sure it’s in-season …

Ribena Longan Popsicles

Ribena Longan Popsicles

Yesterday, I received my new Norpro popsicle mold from Amazon. YAY! So excited that I’ve declared a month long of Pops! Yes, It’s gonna be so fun experimenting with the many Pop recipes this month long of hot summer and even more excited to share them with you.  Besides just plain cordial, you can also blend your favourite fruits and veggies (or add a little alcohol for that summer punch), pour them in and freeze.  Bet your kids will love it. To kick off the Pop Series this summer, I give you the easiest recipe to make, Ribena Longan Pop 🙂 Make this really fun together with your lil one by getting them to help out. But why Ribena and Longan?  Well, apart from the fact that they are good combination and the pretty purple colour, I already have these in my pantry.  The result ? Icy, cooling, sweet Ribena Longan Pops, best enjoyed during this hot summer.  If you want to fizz it up a little, you can add some sparkling water. So, get …

Pandanus and Coconut Jelly with Coconut Crumbs and Longan

Refreshing Pandanus and Coconut Jelly with Coconut Crumbs and Longan

It’s a beautiful warm Sunday today and we desperately needed something to cool our tongues down. This recipe from the cookbook The Road to QV: The Red Spice Road Story caught my eye not just because it’s a good looking dessert but I have always loved the combine tastes of pandanus and coconut. We are quite blessed in Melbourne because most Asian ingredients are readily available at Asian Grocers like the pandan leaves. While making this dessert, I had a challenge understanding the measurements of gelatine leaves compare to gelatine powder and agar agar.  The original recipe in the book cites gelatine leaves but it is not as readily available in the stores as gelatine powder.  So i had to replace with gelatine powder and I found this great resource that clearly explains the measurements about the different kinds of gelatine. Pandanus and Coconut Jelly with Coconut Crumbs and Longan (adapted from The Road to QV: The Red Spice Road Story cookbook) Serves 4 Ingredients: Fresh longan or canned longan, to serve (Pandanus Jelly) 12 …

‘The Cheat’ Vanilla Ice Cream, Ginger Granita & Lychee

A cool dessert is something that I crave for on a hot hot summer day like today! The temperature in Melbourne was 32C and it was humid and scorchingly hot – something that I don’t really welcome during spring time. So, of course the most natural thing for me to do is to go to a hide-out where the air conditioning is at it’s peak and the nearest for me would be the community library.  It was here that I saw the cookbook Cumulus Inc. written by our very own Andrew McConnell.  Of course, having been to Cumulus Inc., I was very excited to try out some of the recipes here. Went to Coles and got the ingredients I need, came home and started to work this dessert.  As the header says “the cheat” version – I went through the shortcut and bought a commercial vanilla ice cream and lychees in a can 🙂  The only thing I need to whip up is the granita.  The ginger accent in the granita added the necessary “perk-me-up” factor …