Tomato ketchup omelette? What’s that?!

“You’re making tomato ketchup omelette?” …. long pause … “What’s that?” That was our reaction when we found out what’s for dinner.

My dear friend J invited us over to her flat for a girlie evening in. She made some simple home cooked meal. Simple but delicious. She introduced us to what she calls it ‘tomato ketchup omelette’. That’s right! It’s not just omelette with tomatoes, but there’s tomato ketchup in it as well! None of us has any idea what it is. But it turned out to be my favourite dish of the night. It was pretty easy to make. So I watched and learn. We were just standing and watching while she prepares everything. The only thing I helped out was to cook the lettuce then add in some oyster sauce and sesame oil. That was pretty easy compared to her, cooking four dishes for just the three of us. It was a really good night with loads of food, watched six continuous episodes of Gossip Girls and having a laugh. That’s not it, we are girls who eat a lot. After that mountain of food we had with rice, honey melon followed then came the cracker steamed cake I made. I will share recipes of the cake later. For now, make some omelette and hope you like it as much as I do.

Tomato ketchup omelette and stir fried British sweetheart cabbage

TOMATO KETCHUP OMELETTE RECIPE

I would now like to share this special recipe of my first attempt to make J’s tomato ketchup omelette with you. The measurements of ingredients aren’t critical. It is just a rough guide. So cook it to your taste. Cook and taste, cook and taste.

  • 3 large tomatoes (quartered)
  • 3 large eggs
  • a pinch of ground white pepper
  • 3 tbs tomato ketchup
  • 4 tbs water
  • 1 tbs sugar
  1. Heat a tablespoon of oil on the pan.
  2. Put the tomatoes in the pan until they soften a little.
  3. While the tomatoes are in the pan, beat the eggs with a pinch of ground white pepper.
  4. Pour in the beaten eggs. Wait until it is half cooked then flip to cook the other side.
  5. Add in the tomato ketchup, sugar and water.
  6. Let it simmer for a little while and plate up.

Note : The beauty of this dish is that it does not have to be a perfectly round omelette. In fact, it’s better that you break them up so the eggs are coated with sweet sauce.

———-

STIR FIRED CABBAGE RECIPE

  • 4 leaves of British sweetheart cabbage (finely sliced)
  • 3 cloves garlic (chopped)
  • 1 carrot (sliced)
  • ground white pepper
  • light soy sauce
  1. Heat the pan with some oil. Fry the garlic until fragrant.
  2. Add in the sliced carrots then the cabbage.
  3. Add in a pinch of ground white pepper and some light soy sauce to taste.

Note : You can use any cabbage of your choice.

Tip : If you’re not having this dish with the omelette above, cook an egg with the cabbage. They go well together. Step 4: Push the cabbage to the side of the pan. Break an egg in the middle. Fold in the cabbage when egg is almost done. mix them all together and serve.

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Abundance of strawberries

The abundance of strawberries calls for strawberry sorbet! Or anything refreshing with strawberries in them. Even my nails are painted red, strawberry red! The first strawberry treat I made this season is the strawberry sorbet. It’s definitely refreshing for such warm days. Cool you down to your ends. If you do not have time to make sorbet, have the strawberries with some champagne. That’ll do the trick! And if alcohol isn’t your cup of tea, have them with cream! Enjoy the strawberry filled summer!
STRAWBERRY SORBET
  • 450g hulled strawberries
  • 4 tbsp sugar syrup
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Method:
  1. Make some sugar syrup with 1/3 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water. Heat until sugar melts and thicken. Leave to cool and then chill in the fridge.
  2. Blend the strawberries, sieve and put them in a countainer to chill in the fridge.
  3. When both sugar syrup and strawberries are chilled, take them out of the refrigerator.
  4. Add 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar into the chilled blended strawberries.
  5. Add in 4 tbsp of sugar syrup into the mixture and mix well. (The amount of syrup depends on your sweetness preference. Make sure it’s slightly sweeter than the optimum as it reduces sweetness once frozen)
  6. Pour the mixture into a container and leave it in the freezer for 3 hours.
  7. Then take them out and blend it well to get rid of the ice crystals for a smooth sorbet.
  8. Put it back into the freezer until it’s well frozen.

Chocolate cupcake surprise with rose chantilly

This cupcake was initially made as a surprise birthday treat for a dear friend but I ended up being ill. So it wasn’t much of a surprise anymore when we had it. But it was still as yummy as ever. I’ve named it a cupcake surprise not because it was made as a surprise gesture. There is actually lychee in the middle of the cupcake, well hidden for a surprise bite. This was inspired by my favourite Ispahan from Ladurée. The heavenly Ispahan was initially created by Pierre Hermé for Ladurée. It is a perfect combination of rose, raspberries and lychee. I have yet to taste the Ispahan from Pierre Hermé so you would have guessed where my first stop will be when I am in Paris next.

These are the photos I’ve got for this batch. I forgot to cut up the cupcake for a picture revealing that hidden surprise, but will definitely add on that missing picture the next time I make this again.

CHOCOLATE CUPCAKE SURPRISE WITH ROSE CHANTILLY

adapated from Béa’s Cupcakes au chocolat, à la lavande

For the rose chantilly

  • 2 tbsp rose flavouring (i used..)
  • 240ml (1 cup) double cream
  • a tiny drop of red colouring (optional to give it a light pink colour)
  • icing sugar (added to your sweetness preference)

Method:

  1. Add the rose flavouring and colouring into the double cream
  2. Whip the double cream while slowly adding some icing sugar to your sweetness preference until it reaches soft peak

For the cupcakes

(makes 12 medium sizes)

  • 57g (2oz) dark chocolate (70% cocoa)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 82g (6tbp) butter
  • 98g (1/2 cup) sugar
  • 30g (1/4 cup) flour
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder, unsweetened
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 3 large lychees cut into quarters
  • 12 raspberries to decorate

Method:

  1. Preheat oven at 180°C (350°F)
  2. Cut the butter in small pieces and chop the chocolates coarsely. Place them in a bowl and melt them in a bain marie
  3. Put the bowl away from heat once melted. Add sugar and mix gently until dissolve. Let rest for few minutes
  4. Continue to mix for about 5 minutes
  5. Add one egg at a time and mix until well blended
  6. Sift flour, cocoa powder and baking powder and add them into the mixture with the salt
  7. Mix well but not too much
  8. Take cupcake moulds (paper or silicone) and fill them 3/4 to the top.
  9. Add a quarter of lycee and push it in to the centre, making sure the mixture covers the lychee.
  10. Cook for about 25 minutes (the cupcakes are cooked when the blade of a sharp knife comes out clean)
  11. Remove from the oven and let cool down.
  12. Decorate cupcakes with the rose chantilly. Use a piping bag. If you don’t have one, just carefully scoop them onto the cupcakes.
  13. Finally, top the chantilly with raspberries.

NOTE:

Keep these cupcakes well hidden as one will not be enough. I had my friend bring some home and he finished all three of them in one go. For that reason, I was accused of making him fat! =)

Cupcakes au chocolat, chantilly à la lavande

Mee rebus & sambal aubergine

One fine Sunday I invited a couple of friends over, and decided to make some Malaysian food that is easy and yummy. The first thing I did was to look for recipes; and which is a better blog for good Malaysian food recipes than my favourite site, ‘rasamalaysia’. Off I go, and found one of the easiest recipe, also the food I miss. MEE REBUS!! Wonderful! Best of all, the method of making this is so brief, I looked at it again to make sure i did not misread it.

Mee rebus. Click here for the recipe.

Look at the picture! Doesn’t it look authentic? It tastes good as well, even without the prawn fritters. I was too lazy to deep fry anything so left that out =P.  I cooked sambal aubergine instead. Cut the aubergines and put them in salted water so they don’t turn brown. Heat the wok with some oil and fry some chopped onions and dried shrimps until fragrant, then add in the sambal made earlier for the mee rebus. Add in the aubergines and cook until they soak in the juices but not too soft. Voila! Done! Sprinkle some chopped spring onions to serve.

Sambal aubergine

Long weekend with ‘peach & chamomile mousse cake’

The long awaited bank holiday weekend has finally arrived. Most people will be out of town or be doing something more interesting. But I’ve opted for a quieter day in. No alarm clock! Just wake up whenever I’m all charged up, be a total slop wearing my pjs most of the day until I sink into a warm fruity bubble bath. But of course with clean teeth. Can’t have my lovely hot choc in my morning breath. =) Took out my well loved Bodum milk frother to froth hot milk for a thick cuppa hot chocolate! Yumm…

…reading on my balcony in the perfect weather of blue sky with white fluffy clouds and a good view

This is a very special bank holiday weekend! My dear flatmate has guestSss over at ours for more than a month. It is as if, they’ve taken over my flat, with fully stocked up fridge with little space left for my food and kitchen top filled with food as well. There’s so much food, you’d think they are planning to hibernate for a quarter of a year! And I don’t even have space and tele to wind down after work. Guess who’s been hogging the tele! So this particular weekend is when all of them including my flatmate are out of town!! How lovely! I finally have the place to myself and relax all I want. But before I start doing all that, a thorough cleaning was needed!

It felt more like home after some cleaning and tidying! Time for brunch then!! Big fat juicy mushrooms with scrambled eggs and toast with butter…  forgot baked beans but it doesn’t matter. The main ingredients were all present. Once I was well fed, it was time to make some indulgent dessert, the ‘Peach and camomile mousse cake’! It’s a recipe I got from the lovely blog, Tartelette with her ever so attractive photos.

…my attempt of the peach and chamomile mousse cake…

My mousse cake turned out quite well although it didn’t set as well as I’d like them to. I used gelatin sheets instead of the powdered form she used so maybe four films wasn’t enough. The mousse layers on hers is more differentiated whereas the peach colour on mine was a little lighter so I’ve added a drop of red colouring to make it more vibrant. What’s most important, it looks lovely and tastes heavenly. My dear friend who was lucky enough to try this cake went mmmmm…. mmmmm… and more mmmm…. finished with a big smile on the face! That makes me happy!

…bliss.. does include sinking in to a warm cranberry bubble bath.. =) would be even better if the bathroom has a lovely view instead of just 4 blocks of walls..

I was thinking of bringing some of these mousse cakes to work but one of my colleague is a vegetarian. So she won’t be able to have anything with gelatin. Since there were extra lemon olive oil cake that was yielded from the cake recipe, I’ve created something out of it. I  sandwiched it with strawberry jam and topped with slices of peach. It was a lovely combination. The peach slices bring out the olive oil flavour.

Cantonese egg tarts

Having been brought up to have dim sum almost every sunday for brunch when i was young, it is no surprise I have a few favourites. The usual must haves are the har kau (shrimp dumpling with shiny translucent skin), sesame balls and of course the egg tarts.

So at the very minute when a friend called to attend a dinner session at his place, I quickly volunteered to make desserts. “Surprise me!” he said. The decision was quick, egg tarts it is! Flipped through my recipe folder for one of the well praised cantonese tart recipe from Christine’s blog, went to get some missing ingredients and VOILA!

My first batch of egg tarts!! =)

I was surprised at how easy it is to make. A good recipe makes all the difference. So a great thank you to Christine for her amazing recipes and her note to pull open the oven door at the last stage. It was very helpful. It kept the egg custard from puffing up, keeping the flat and smooth surface.

** I reduced the sugar for the custard to 60g instead of the 110g since I did not want them to be too sweet.

Peanut Cookies

(fah sang peng)

Since the Chinese New Year treats are not as widely available here as the mince pies during Christmas, I decided to make some to increase the festive mood just in time for our celebration on the eve. My mates love them and could not stop eating. They had practically finished the whole box before we even had dinner. Mmm…

This cookie is easy enough to make and is a real indulgence for a festive treat. Pack them nicely in a box with a lovely ribbon to be given away or stack them up on your cookie tray for when your guests arrive for open house. Just make sure not to put all of them out on display cause once your guests tried one, they would not stop popping the next one into their mouth. Gosh.., they melt in the mouth!

Happy Chinese New Year to all and hope you have a roaring start!!

Peanut cookie recipe

  • 600g peanuts (skinless)
  • 600g flour
  • 500g icing sugar
  • 500ml peanut oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 big heap tbsp of peanut butter
  • 10g grated dark chocolate (I used 85% cacao) [optional]
  • Egg yolk for brushing
  1. Toast the peanuts until fragrant. Be careful not to burn them.
  2. Ground or blend the toasted peanuts until fine in a food processor.
  3. Mix the ground peanuts, sugar and salt.
  4. Add in butter and peanut butter then lastly the flour. Mix well.
  5. Pour in oil and blend until it becomes a dough.
  6. Roll them into balls and place them on a greased baking tray.
  7. Bake in preheated oven at 175ºC for 18 minutes.

* Be careful while handling them as they break easily. This recipe yields about 6 takeaway plastic boxes so you can half the recipe.