My cooking and baking addiction

Lately, I have been cooking and baking a lot. I’m always trying something I have never done before and then if I like the results I’ll try to perfect it. Looking back, I have cooked/baked/prepared the following (the ones that really work):

  1. Butter beer — alcoholic and non-alcoholic
  2. Pancake- (blueberry, strawberry, banana)
  3. Donuts
  4. Chiffon cake and chiffon cup cake (pandan, orange)
  5. Pavlova
  6. Tempura (making the batter from scratch)
  7. Pretzels (with yeast and without)
  8. Sushi
  9. Fish crackers (keropok lekor — from scratch)
  10. Fresh pasta (made without pasta machine)
  11. Fresh egg raviolo (made without pasta machine)
  12. Fresh ravioli (mushroom, cheese) — made without pasta machine
  13. Cheese (ricotta)
  14. Custard
  15. Souffle
  16. Water crackers
  17. Peanut biscuits
  18. Scones (cheese, plain, raisins)
  19. Frosting — italian buttercream
  20. Cheese cake — baked
  21. Japanese cheese cake
  22. Apple pie (with pie crust made from scratch)
  23. Pineapple tarts
  24. Chilli pickle
  25. Tomato rice
  26. Tom yam
  27. Nasi lemak
  28. Steak
  29. Crispy salmon
  30. Mashed potatoes
  31. Cottage potatoes
  32. Tomatoes cilantro basil salad
  33. Aoili
  34. Vinaigrete
  35. Chicken rice
  36. Chicken stock (made from chicken)
  37. Broccoli soup (with brocolli stock made from the broccoli)
  38. Butter (made from cream)
  39. Buttermilk (from the butter making)
  40. Caramelised onions
  41. Caramel
  42. Pudding
  43. Cream caramel
  44. Hot wings
  45. Muruku
  46. Curry puff (with sardines)
  47. Poached eggs
  48. Butter sage (pasta sauce)
  49. Cheese sauce
  50. Blue cheese dips
  51. Merengue
  52. Caprese
  53. Crisps
  54. Whipped cream (whipping double cream until it is whipped ☺)
  55. Crispy onion rings
  56. Buttermilk fried chicken
  57. Tumeric fried chicken
  58. Rice
  59. Fried rice
  60. Fajitas
  61. Sweet and sour chicken
  62. Mussels in coconut broth
  63. Prawn with salted egg yolks, curry leaves, butter and chilli.
  64. Butter crab claws.
  65. Steam chicken.
  66. Fried fish with soy sauce
  67. Spinach — butter, garlic, steam

Things I can do very well

  1. Butter beer
  2. Tomato rice
  3. Donut
  4. Butter sage sauce
  5. Cheese (ricotta)
  6. Chiffon cake
  7. Merengue
  8. Fresh egg raviolo
  9. Steak
  10. Mashed potatoes
  11. Tempura batter
  12. Tomatoes cilantro basil salad
  13. Caprese
  14. Scones
  15. Tom yam
  16. Crispy onion rings

All the above are made without using food processor, without pasta machine or bread machine. As for the cream and merengue, I’ve made them without using electric mixer. For the pie crust, I use a fork and not a pastry blender to mix the flour and butter. I also did not use thermometer and kitchen scale. I did not use spoons and cups that has the measurement written on it. I also did not use cookie cutter and parchment papers. I also do not own a rolling pin.

The kitchen gadjets that I use are electric hand blender and electric hand balloon whisk. I use the electric ballon whish to speed up making the merengue and whipping the cream.

So how did I measure? If the recipe states 150 grams flour and 100 grams corn flour — I’ll translate that as every 3 tablespoons of flour, I should add 2 tablespoons of corn flour. So 150/100 = 3/2. I cut my cookies using a knife, a cup, bottles. For donuts — the same thing. Since I don’t have a rolling pin, I use a cup to roll the dough. So for the fresh pasta, I used the cup to roll to the desired thickness — which is, until transparent.

How do I know that I have reached the right temperature when making cheese or frosting (sugar syrup)? By the look of it. I observe the water bubbles.

I really enjoy cooking and baking. It is so relaxing, unless I’m rushing to prepare dinner. Otherwise, when I am down or feeling lonely, I will take my flour, butter, eggs, sugar, salt, baking powder…or I will take my lemon grass, fish sauce, onions, garlic, tomatoes, etc and bake or cook something.

The most amazing things for me are:

  1. The way eggs can be whipped into merengue
  2. The way cream can be whipped into butter
  3. The way eggs can be poached
  4. How vinegar and any form of acid strengthen egg whites
  5. How milk separates into cheese and whey by adding acid (vinegar, lemon juice) — I use the whey to make tom yum.
  6. Emulsification of oil and egg yolk — beautiful yellow
  7. Poking egg raviolo and let the yolk spread into the butter sage sauce, turning the sauce into a rich silky yummiest sauce in the world!

My favourite:

Salt, pepper, thyme, basil, rosemary, sage, cilantro, lemon grass, pandan leaves, kaffir lime leaves, galangal, ginger, garlic, onion, cinnamon, star anise, cumin, cloves, cardamom, paprika, cayenne pepper, chilli.

Most versatile: Egg and milk

Most versatile animal: Cow and chicken (for the wings only, hehehe).

Tastiest: Crabs — Although I don’t know how to cook them except crab claws.

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