Wednesday, March 26, 2008


Banoffee is indeed many people's favorite. It combines the best of desserts family : Pie cruset made with eveyone's favorite cookies Oreo, sweet / rich caramel made from sweetened condensed milk, bananas with chewy texture and finally soft cremy whipped creme that melts in your mouth.

Although this is easy to make, it requires up to 4-5 hour for prep time. Here is the recipe.


Pie crust

2 cups of Oreo crumb
1/2 - 2/3 cups of soften butter

---> mix together oreo crump and butter. It should be able to form a ball when squeezed. If not , add a dollop butter. Chilled 2 hr until fork-firmed.


2 cans of Sweetened condense milk
2 bananas
Brownie bits soaked in espresso(optional)

--> In a glass container or Pyrex, microwave condensed milk at medium low for 15-20 minutes, stir every 5 minute until golden brown. The color should be similar to that of caramel's. Cool completely before use.


2 cups of whipped creme
1 tablespoon of gelatin powder

---> soak gelatin with half cup of cold whipped cream for 1o minute. Pour remain whip creme in a cold bowl (I put the bowl out the window, it was 5 C outside). Beat until thickened, mix in soaked gelatin, beat til it forms hard peak from the whisk.

Garnish: thinly scrapped chocolate.

Once the pie is chilled until firmed, spread in the caramel (must be completely cold). It may be a little sticky but that's okay. Sliced bananas and lay them on. Put on brownie bits (optional). Then put it whipped creme. You can just squeeze whipped creme from ziplock, make it messy look. Sprinkle with chocolate bits.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Sweet Potato Pie

I bought a big head of sweet potato the other day. It was CNY 7 (around USD 1). Planned to have a bite right away but finally ….decided to kick up a notch, sweet potato pie. How does that sound?

I looked up for a pie recipe on the web. Found one which has an award winning at county fair. Okay, this is it. The filling? Umm, looked up and found Alton Brown’s recipe which calls for yogurt instead of butter and (evaporated) milk. Well, I run out of milk and butter, what a co-incident. Besides, definitely this is good for health, not sure how this would turn out.

Pie crust prep time requires chilling, next time I’ll give it 2 hr rest so that it’s easier to roll out. This time it was a bit thawed and wet and that’s why it was sticky to plastic wrap while rolling. One batch of dough fit well to a 9’inch pyrex.

Verdict : Pie crust, browned on the side, not at the bottom. The browned side is crisp and I love it. The county fair pie crust is to keep. Next time I’ll bake blind so it’s crispy at the bottom too. Filling is very nice, given its fat-free. For those who are a big fan of creamy pumpkin pie may alter yoghurt with evaporate milk and butter. Maple syrup and toasted walnut is a nice to have.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Tower of Greentea

I love matcha green tea, I love red beans, I love fresh crème….which is why I can’t resist buying a piece of matcha chiffon every time I swing by my favorite store. I intentionally put more matcha so that the crème is bit bitter, red-bean paste must be sweet. I love it when the extreme of both ends meet in layers. I also mixed the full beans in so that I have something to chew.

This has been in my wish-to-bake list since last year. I was thinking about layered with bitter chocolate….but …. since I love green tea aroma, I didn’t want anything to over mine it. I assembled a 7-layers, make it a tower. And yes, this is my empire! .

Of course this one is good with a cup of hot tea. Hot green tea if you want.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Very Very Fruity cake

The recipe is from my favorite "The Best of Baking" that I got from my friend in the 90s. The recipe calls for huge (2 cups) of ground almond/walnut. Orange zest did make it special at first bite. I also add some kind of (chinese) flowery scent I bought when visited Xitang. I put black cherry in the center. It's totally refreshing when you have it in your mouth.

I want to sprinkle some liquer on it. But since this is a cake for my mom , her BD is tomorrow, so I make this a sin-free cake.

Happy birthday Mami !


7 eggs, separated
1 cup of sugar
Grated peel of orange and juice of 2 orange.
1/4 cup of all-purpose flour
2 cups of cake crumbs
2 cups of ground almond

Filling : Blueberry or Cherry filling

Topping :
1 cup of orange jelly
1 cup of slice almond, toasted lightly

Beat together egg yolks+ half sugar until creamy. Beat in orange juice and gratged orange peel. In a separate bowl, beat egg white until stiff: fold in remaining sugar Gently fold egg white mixture into egg yolk mixture. Sift in the flour, cake crumbs and ground almond. I divided dry ingredients in to 3 portion. Fold gently, try not to deflate the batter. Do not panic if you deflate them. This requires a bit of twist-and-turn skills . Do not overwork, other wise you'll end up having a dense cake. Pour batter in 9 inch pan. Bake 30-40 min or until wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean.

To make topping: warm jelly, press thru a sieve to obtain jelly. Brush jelly over top and sides. Cover with toasted almond, press gently.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Ham&Cheese bun

I had a big piece as breakfast + a cup of yoguht shake. The bun is fluffy and chewy. This batch is a keeper. For those who love carbs, here might as well be your favorite.

Dough resting period is not long but it calls for 3 rests. I brushed the buns with egg, ham, mushroom and cheese. Topped with mayo+sugar. Final garnish with thymes and pepper would also adds flavors.

The bun is from Chinese bread book.

White Loaf

I was in the mood of craving ..... craving for carb. Nothing is better than a slice of soft bread and marmalade (or perhaps nutella? or peanut butter?). Here we go. A big white loaf that can last for 2 weeks. I ensure I have large-enough freezer to enjoy it.

I brushed with egg. It brown faster before the crumb was done. Next time try brushing with milk.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Mini Caramel chiffon

Okay, the plate is dirty. I didn't have time to clean up and arrange the setting while taking photo of this mini cake. The sunlight was about to move away from my window so I had to catch the moment. Okay.... enough excuses. :-)

I have something to confess. Once I started my first bite, I couldn't stop. I finished 3 of these mini cakes by the time the second batch was slid into the oven. I knew by then I needed to spend my eveing on the treadmill.

Of course not, I didn't have this alone. I gave some to my landlady who lives next door. Happiness is there to share.
1 cup (130 g) all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 tablespoon of baking powder
4 egg yolks
1/3 cups of sugar
1/2 tsp of vanilla
1/4 cups of vegetable oil
1/2 cups of milk
4 egg whites
1/4 tsp of lemonade (or sprinkle of creme of tartar)
1/4 cups of sugar
Hard Candy (Topping) : 1-1.5 cups of sugar
Grease rubber muffin mold.
Put 1-1.5 cups of sugar in the pan over low heat until it melts. When it becomes lightly brown, remove immediately from the heat. Pour into prepare rubber muffin mold. Set aside. It will harden , but no worries. Now , prepare cake chiffon batter.
(1) Sieve dry ingredient shown in (1) above.
(2) Beat egg yolks+sugar shown in (2) until creamy.
(2.1) In a separate bowl, mix in milk , vegetable oil and vanilla. Mix well into egg yolk mixture.
(3)Beat egg whites + lemonade until thicken. Beat in sugar untill stiff.
Mix one-third flour into egg yolk mixture. Do it gently , try your best not to deflate batter. Fold in 1/3 of egg white into batter. Repeat until done.
Pour batter into rubber muffin pan on top of hard candy. Bake 180 C around 20 minute.

Banana Chocolate mousse

This one is the winner. There are 6 layers : chocolate sponge, caramel , chocolate mousse, banana, vanilla cake and chocolate mousse (does that count to six?). I soaked up sponge cake with espresso. Oh boyd, that was heavenly good , especially for chocolate / coffee lovers.

Close your eyes and take this bite from the fork!

March 2, 2009 - Here we go, the recipe as requested by visitors :-) . I adapted from David's recipe for the chocolate sponge and banana filling. For the mousse, I adapted from Alton Brown's recipe

For the banana filling:
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons water
3 ripe, medium-sized bananas
Juice of 1/2 lemon

For the cake:

1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1 cup banana puree (2 medium bananas)
1/2 cup low-fat sour cream (I used yoghurt)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1. To make the banana filling, mix the brown sugar and water together in an 8-inch square metal cake pan or cast iron skillet.

2. Heat the mixture until it begins to boil, reduce the heat and simmer 45 seconds, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

3. When cool, slice the bananas into 1/4-inch thick slices. Arrange them in rows over the melted sugar in the pan, overlapping them slightly. Sprinkle the slices with the lemon juice.

4. To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

5. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon into a large bowl. Stir in the granulated sugar.

6. In a separate bowl, mix together the butter, egg, egg white, banana puree, sour cream and vanilla.

7. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and stir in the wet ingredients until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.

8. Carefully spread the batter over the bananas and bake for 40 minutes.

9. Remove from oven and allow to cool for at least 20 minutes. Loosen the edges of the cake from the pan and invert on a serving platter.

For the chocolate mousse

1 3/4 cups whipping cream
12 ounces quality semi-sweet chocolate chips
3 ounces espresso or strong coffee
4 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon flavorless, granulated gelatin

Chill 1 1/2 cups whipping cream in refrigerator. Chill metal mixing bowl and mixer beaters in freezer.

In top of a double boiler, combine chocolate chips, coffee, rum and butter. Melt over barely simmering water, stir constantly. Remove from heat while a couple of chunks are still visible. Cool, stirring occasionally to just above body temperature.

Pour remaining 1/4 cup whipping cream into a metal measuring cup and sprinkle in the gelatin. Allow gelatin to bloom for 10 minutes. Then carefully heat by swirling the measuring cup over a low gas flame or candle. Do not boil or gelatin will be damaged. Stir mixture into the cooled chocolate and set aside.

In the chilled mixing bowl, beat cream to medium peaks. Stir 1/4 of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture to lighten it. Fold in the remaining whipped cream in two doses. There may be streaks of whipped cream in the chocolate and that is fine. Do not over work the mousse.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Smoked ham pizza

This is the latest stuff from my oven. It tastes as nice as it looks.

The bread was made ahead of time. So, prep time was just a mere 10 min slicing whatever I like. I call this a handsome pizza.

Verdict: Toppings are great (Olives, Smoked ham, Mozzarella, Onion, Roasted bell peppers). I didn't have pizza sauce. And I don't bother to cook one of my own, so I bought spaghetti sauce.....taste good. As I said, put whatever I like. :-) Crust ..... chewy. It didn't turn golden brown at bottom. Since pizza stone was missing from the parameter, I won't be able to tell if the recipe is a keeper. Will try next time.

Date: Saturday March 8, 2008.