Friday, May 29, 2009

Sweet Potato Muffins

Saw Yam Tea Cake recipe from Alex Goh's 'Creative making of Cakes', but since I don have yam and coconut milk, I substituted with sweet potato, yogurt and milk.


250g     butter
180g     sugar
Pinch of salt

4           eggs

180g     sweet potato, steamed (I used those purple potatoes)
25g       sugar
80ml    yogurt
80ml    milk

290g     flour
1 tbsp    milk powder
1/2 tsp  baking powder
  1. Cream (A) til light and fluffy
  2. Add (B) and cream til light and smooth
  3. Mix (C) til well blended while the cooked sweet potato is still hot.  Leave to cool.  Add it into the above mixture and mix til combined
  4. Lastly, fold in the sieved (D) and mix til well incorporated
  5. Pour mixture into muffin cups
  6. Bake at 180 C for 20 minutes
After I mashed the sweet potato, I found that it contained some tiny roots, afraid that it may ruin the texture, I rub it thru a sieve to get rid of the roots and made the sweet potato smoother, cost me about 15 minutes for this tedious process.

I had the 1st batch with chocolate chips which is little girls favorites

2nd batch with toffee bits

Satisfied with the texture and taste, fluffy and yummy!

Salted Radish (aka Cai Po 菜脯) & Chicken Claws Soup

I remembered mum used to boil this soup very long time ago, tried out myself on Wed, the salted radish gave a natural sweetness & saltiness to the soup, I don have to add in any salt or sugar at all, yum!


200g   salted radish (cai po in Hokkien)
1          carrot
10        chicken claws
1/3       old chicken hen (for boiling soup)
2          honey date (蜜棗)
2 litre   water
  1. Clean chicken claws and chicken meat, boil a pot of hot water, boil chicken and claws in hot water for 2 to 3 minutes to wash off the blood
  2. Place chicken, claws and honey dates into soup pot, pour in 2 litre of hot water, bring to boil, then simmer
  3. Cut salted radish and carrot into bite size
  4. Place salted radish and carrot into soup, continue simmer for 2 hours
My bowl of soup and the claws, yummy!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Zong Zi 棕子 (Rice Dumpling) Bento (85)

It was suppose to be a sushi bento today, however, little girl changed her mind yesterday, as her teacher told her that it'd be Rice Dumpling Day today.  Little girl loves rice dumpling, especially the 'alkaline' dumpling 鹼水棕, with or without kaya or sugar, weird isn't it.

Today's bento consists of (left to right): green grapes & yellow kiwifruit, brown bear made of pork rice dumpling, 2 quail eggs, and flowers made of (left) fried vegetable and miso salmon, and (right) alkaline dumpling with kaya (the only kaya little girl eats, cook by my aunt, she cooks the best kaya in town!)

The 1st dish little girl attacked was the 'alkaline' dumpling (see how much she loves it!), even a brown bear can't challenge her favorite ;p  She cleaned the bento today, except 1/2 of the brown bear, funny, she likes loh mai kai but not this pork rice dumpling, why-huh?

Snack bento consists of yellow kiwi, grapes and 'alkaline' rice dumpling with lots of kaya

To all of u celebrating this festival, Happy Duan Wu Festival!  端午節快樂!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Wagyu Beef & Shredded Mango Pickle

I bought this thin slices of Australia wagyu beef last Thu from Jusco 1U during its member sales, quite a good buy. I'd been wanted to try this wagyu beef due to the 'snowy' fat it have, just look at those slices.

I thot of using it for shabu-shabu, but the weather is to too hot to eat shabu-shabu, thus I turned it into a cold dish that we enjoyed very much.

Those shredded stuffs underneath the beef are mango pickle. I bought 2 Indian mangoes last Tue, cut it yesterday, thot of packed it into little girl's bento, but they r way too raw & sour, in order not to waste it, I pickled them with sugar.

This dish is very simple, other than the time used in pickling the mango, it can be ready in less than 15 minutes!

Mango Pickle
  1. julienne 1/4 of mango, it's ok if u cut them into thick strips
  2. rub a dash of salt into mango, let rest for 5 minutes
  3. spoon in 1 tbsp of sugar (u may put in more sugar if u prefer a sweeter version), mix well
  4. put into fridge for at least 30 minutes
To cook the wagyu beef:
  1. bring a pot of water to boil
  2. take a piece of wagyu beef with chopstick, place into boing water, using chopstick to stir the beef for 5 sections
  3. bring beef out from boing water, quickly place it into ice water (with ice cubes) to stop it from further cooking
  4. repeat step 2 and 3 with the rest of wagyu beef
Finally, place mango pickles on plate, follow with cooked wagyu beef, u may drizzle some sesame dressing on the beef but I used a Taiwanese garlic sauce this time.

Hubby and little girl love this dish. Little girl don fancy the garlic sauce thus I let her had it with sesame dressing, she ate about 4 or 5 pieces of the beef! With the mango pickles, this dish is very appetizing, u won't feel guilty of having so much meat ;p

Monday, May 25, 2009

Sweet n Milky Filling Bun

Saw this 奶酥麵包 (I called it sweet & milky bun) recipe here last week, found that the filling is quite simple and easy to handle, decided to give it a try on Sun (since I need to prepare burger bun for little girl's bento).

Actually I didn't bake the buns fully by myself, I just did 50% of it, cos I kneaded the bread dough and mixed the filling only, I had the rest of the processes completed by my godmum (my whole family went to aunt's hse to fetch mum & rice dumpling made by my aunt), ;p

Can u see the sweet & milky filling?  Yummy and not too sweet at all!

I didn't use the bread dough recipe as per the link, instead used my usual bread dough recipe, here is the translation of the filling recipe:


40g      unsalted butter
30g      shortening
30g      icing sugar
1/8 tsp salt
30g      egg
1 tbsp   corn flour
80g      milk powder

  1. Mix butter and shortening together (u may used margarine if out of shortening) 
  2. Sift the icing sugar and salt, blend into butter mixture
  3. Spoon in egg bit by bit, mix well
  4. Pour in corn flour and milk powder, mix until even
  5. Let mixture chill in fridge for 10 minutes
The recipe suggested to separate the filling mixture into 9 balls, but I made it into 12 balls and asked godmum to use 50g of bread dough instead of 60g as suggested cos I wanna made more to let 3 families (mine, mum's and godmum's) tried out these buns.

The verdict:  I love it, it is milky, not too sweet and yummy!  :)

Chicken Steak Burger Bento (84)

Went to McD with little girl last Fri, she ate her usual fried drumstick while I had the McChicken, suddenly, she turned to me:

LG: Mummy, can I try yours?
Me: Sure, nah!  * let her had a bite *
LG: There is salad and mayonnaise, I like it!  Can I eat yours?
Me: Sure, take it!

Then she continued chewing on the McChicken happily, also occasionally picked up those dropped lettuces to stuff into her mouth :)

Therefore when I asked her what to have for her bento last Sat (asked b4 I went for groceries marketing), she announced that she wanna burger just like the one she ate in McD.  Since I don have instant chicken burger at home (don wanna to stock it at home too), tot that frying a deboned chicken drumstick should be better and healthier for burger.

So, today's bento contains: Chicken steak burger (Fried chicken drumstick, layered with lots of shredded lettuce, mayo, cheese in a self-baked wholemeal bun), followed with 2 quail eggs, 2 grape tomatoes and 5 seedless green grapes.

The verdict:  Little girl "sapu" (wiped off) most of the lettuce and quail eggs, left half of the burger for snack and refused to eat the last grape and tomato.  She likes the fried chicken drumstick and mayo lettuce very much.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Mantou & Wonton Bento (83)

Little girl loves mantou, especially those plain mantou, she likes to have it plain, with ham, cheese, nutella, etc.  Since her appetite is recovering, I prepared her a slightly bigger volume bento.

Contains of bottom tier: mantou with ham & cheese, edamame, fried wontons, baby fish balls, and fried meatballs.

As for top tier: pineapple and mangosteen, plus a container of mayo, ketchup and salt.

Little girl kept 1 mangosteen, some edamame and 2 wontons into her snack box during lunch, for her snack later.  She dislike the meatball, but managed to eat the rest without fuss, phew!

Glad she's recovering from the tummy ache and gradually back to her normal appetite.

Monday, May 18, 2009

U Call This A Bento? (82)

After having fever last Wed, little girl has been complaining of tummy-ache, mild but enough to cause her throwing tantrums and most importantly, refusing to eat proper meals.  

I brought her to pediatrician, ped mentioned it was just some virus attack due to the cold she had, ped prescribed some tummy-ache medicine but it didn't help at all thru out the weekend, she still complaining of tummy-ache.

After some advices from relatives & sister yesterday, I brought little girl to seek help from chinese physician this morning.  Therefore, I made this simple bento in 5 minutes, (it was what little girl agreed to have for her lunch), showered little girl, then rushed over to Setapak to visit this Low Poh Seng chinese physician.  After checking little girl, he said her tummy-ache was due to airy tummy 脹風, not to worry.

Ok, back to the bento, it contains a small piece of ham & butter sandwich, pretzels, grapes & tomatoes.  U may notice it was loosely packed and the volume was so little compared to what little girl used to have.  Little girl ate only half of the sandwich during lunch, and finished the remaining half in the car after her pre-school, as for the rest, all remained untouched.  Though still don have appetite, but thank god, after taking the chinese medicine, her teacher told me she didn't complain of any tummy-ache and return to her normal self as compared to last Thu & Fri cos she was pretty quiet in class (very abnormal sign).

After having the medicine for twice, she didn't throw tantrum again during dinner, able to eat a small portion of rice, salmon & vegetable, phew!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Clam, Dried scallop and Spinach Porridge

Sorry, there is no bento today, as little girl had fever yesterday, decided not to let her goto the extra class though she is going to pre-school today.  

This is the porridge I cooked few days ago - clam, dried scallop and spinach porridge.
Here is a little tip if u wanna cook porridge fast, freeze the washed rice for at least 4 hours.  I usually wash & freeze it a nite a head, then cook the porridge in the morning using the rice cooker, don have to 'jaga api' :)

Little girl loves dried scallop, and green vegetables, so decided on this porridge as that was what I had in my fridge ;p

She enjoyed the porridge very much with a bit of soy sauce and pepper, me too!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Fruity Wonton Skin Bento (81)

We had fried wonton 雲吞 & shuijiao 水餃 for dinner last Sat, MIL fried some extra plain wonton skin for little girl, which I kept for today's bento.

The weather is extremely hot lately, thought having some cold fruits for bento will be appetizing.  I used half an hour to prepare the bento: frying of egg and bacon, slicing of fruits and packing to box.

Bottom tier contains (from left): green kiwifruit, yellow kiwifruit, fried egg, bacon, grape tomato, also a container of mayo and tomato sauce.

Top tier: wonton skin and green grapes.

I packed an extra box of fruits for her snack, it contains green & yellow kiwifruits and 2 fish balls.

Little girl washed out the bento today, though it was a bit messy spreading tomato sauce & mayo on wonton skin but she enjoyed 'playing' with the food :)

Butterfly, Spider and Serpent

We went to 1U on Sat morning, to join the World Lupus Day campaign, "Colours of Hope" art event.  Little girl did this butterfly with little helps from the 'teachers' (from the organizer and Get Crafty art centre) and mummy :)

Isn't it pretty?

After the painting of butterfly & lunch, we went to Alfa Romeo show room, at Section 13, PJ.

To look see the rolls out of these gorgeous cars: Alfa 159, GT, Brera and Spider.  You must go here to see these sexy babies!

Hubby has been poisoned by the Alfa Serpent ever since he owned his 1st - 146ti in 1998.  He even educated little girl to recognized the logo b4 she turned 1!  And got her Alfa toys too * roll eyes *:

We'd been waited long for the launch of the above cars, and finally Sime Darby brought them in.

Little girl and me were busy test-sitting the cars in the show room, while hubby chatting with his alfistis.  The 1st car we 'attacked' was the Spider (my dream car, little girl loves it too!), it is a convertible car, with super gorgeous look, fancy interiors, etc, basically I was drooling all over this babe.  But with its selling price, I can only play with it in the show room :(

Isn't it hot?

Lastly, let's enjoy this: Alfa 159 featured in the latest Bond's Quantum of Solace - Aston Martin Car Chase.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!

Little girl did this at her pre-school:

To all mummies, mommies, mamas, mums...

Happy mother's day!

From:  Little girl & family

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Stewed Chicken & Mushroom Pasta Bento (80)

Took about 30 minutes to prepare bento, ie: cook pasta, reheat food leftover from dinner, cut  & mold fruits, and finally packed into box.

Contains of bento (from left): stewed chicken & mushroom mix with pasta, cold bear-shaped tofu with spring onions & kutsuobushi, stewed sweet turnip (sengkuang) with dried shrimps, heart-shaped golden kiwifruit and watermelon.

Little girl managed to finish up the bento, no, almost..., left half of the stewed sweet turnip, she liked it last nite but not today, funny...

Watermelon Skin 'Leong Soi' 西瓜皮涼水

Was chatting with Nicholas's grandma (Yeah!  It's ur mum, Duckz/Caroline ;p ) few days ago (while waiting for little girl to leave her tadika), learned this amazing leong soi from her.

So, what'd u do with all these after biting (or cutting) off the best parts?  Threw it off, what a waste!

Try this, just dump all the watermelon skin (of course after washing it clean) into a deep pot, put in hot water til just covering the skin, give it a boil, then simmer for about an hour.  You may put in 2 or 3 rock sugar for a slightly sweeter version.

Hmm....  so refreshing with some ice cubes...

The verdict: Tasted like the chok che (bamboo sugar cane) leong soi 竹蔗涼水, very refreshing especially after chilling.

I'd checked thru the net, found this site with great info of watermelon (in chinese):

夏天中暑,出现发热、口渴、尿少等症;或患其他急性热病,出现高热、多汗、大渴,烦躁、尿痛等症,都宜用西瓜作辅助治 疗。既可生吃瓜瓤,也可取瓜汁饮用,还可用西瓜皮煎水服用。

Having heat stroke during summer, fever, thirst,less urine, etc; or suffering from other acute fever, high fever, excessive sweating, great thirst, irritability, pain during urinating, etc watermelon is suitable to use as treatment. Watermelon pulp can be eaten raw, by drinking juice, or by drinking boiled watermelon skin water.

Can u see the usefulness of watermelon skin now?  Remember to boil it 1st b4 u throw them away next time when u have watermelon at home ;p 

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Tom Yam Fried Rice

The weather has been crazy lately, with super hot & bright sun, and sudden rain once or twice, oh well, it is so hot Hot HOT!!!!!

I'd a sudden crave of tom yam this afternoon, but having tom yam soup will definitely sweat me thoroughly, therefore, I substituted with tom yam fried rice.

My simple tom yam fried rice with fish cake and lots of shredded lettuce, wait... can tom yam fried rice go without these super hot bird-eye chilis, yum...  ooh...  hot!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Chicken Nest Pao Bento (79)

I was turning lazy after the long idle weekend, thus today's bento r mostly out-sourced.  The chicken wing was leftover from dinner we took at 桂林 restaurant at Subang New Village.  As for the chicken nest pao 雞窩包 was bought by MIL from Seremban Market, we loves it very much, super soft & yummy!

I used about 10 minutes to debone the wing, seeded the grapes, skewered the halve grapes & tomatoes, threw in the food into bento box and the little decoration of smiley face.

Little girl kept 5 skewers of fruits and 1/4 of chicken nest pao for her snack, finished the rest of fruits, wing but ate only 1/4 of the pao.  Actually she waked up late this morning, at about 11am, ate 1 butter & marmite sandwich and 1 nutella sandwich.  The bento was prepared b4 she was awake, thus the pao was too big for her to finish at 12.45pm.  Well, happy oledi since she finished the rest.

Peach Maki & Butterfly Maki

Brought this book from Hong Kong.  It shows ways to make fancy maki in details.  It was my uncle's birthday on Labour Day - 1st May, decided to make some maki for the birthday party.

Saw this page, well, Chinese believe peach is representing long life, this should please the birthday boy, and to remind him that he is old too (my uncle is just 10 years elder than me)

Peach maki made by me with great success!

With plenty of rice remaining, I tried out this page too -  the butterfly maki

Butterfly maki, for the kids

Do u like these maki?