Chocolate Zucchini Yoghurt Cake

October 19, 2018

CZY cake
.

adapted from this recipe
.
So… some people think there’s no point in not having full-fat soft drinks if you’re having a non-diet meal. Why not? Why is it wrong to try to be a little bit less super unhealthy..? Have a real dessert!

Or take a bit of sugar out of the recipe and add frosting! Maybe even Kahlua frosting… (I had spare Kahlua… which was made (using this recipe) as I had spare vodka…. 20 year old me would never forgive myself). skip the Kahlua if you’re boring, or, like, underage, or something.

Anyway, this recipe is bloody simple. 1 bowl and pan for the cake, 1 bowl for the frosting.

Makes 1 cake 8×13 inches, or a shitload of cupcakes (probably)

INGREDIENTS

Cake
1 courgette/ zucchini
2 eggs
1/4 cup/ 60ml oil
1/2 cup/ 120ml yoghurt
1 cup/ 220g self raising flour, or plain flour
(if using plain flour, add 2 tsp baking powder)
1/3 cup/ 60g cocoa
1/2 cup/ 100g sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup nuts/ raisins

Frosting
2 tbsp Kahlua, or coffee or cocoa powder for a non-alcohol version
1 tbsp butter
1/2 cup/ 100g icine sugar

METHOD

Preheat oven 350F/ 175C.

Grease cake tin, line with baking paper if using.

Mix all ingredients in bowl until all are incorporated. If the mixture looks dry, add a touch more milk or yoghurt (about a tbsp at a time). If the mixture looks too wet, or curdles, then add a tbsp of plain flour.

Pour mixture into pan and level the surface.

Bake approximately 40-50 minutes. Roughly 20-25 minutes baking time if in cupcake form.

Allow cake to cool completely before frosting.

Ingredients

To make the frosting:

Cream the Kahlua and butter together until smooth.
Gradually mix in icing sugar until all is incorporated.
Add more icing sugar for a thicker frosting.

Spread frosting on the cooled cake.

Best accompanied by more Kahlua, either Brown Cow (1 part Kahlua, 2 parts milk, lots of ice) or Black Russian (1 part vodka to 1-2 parts Kahlua, even bigger lot of ice). Do not add cola to the Black Russians. Not for health reasons, it is sacrilege. Unless you’re running cheap drinks deals at a student club night, then it’s okay, I guess (damage limitation?).

No-Churn cheesecake ice cream w/ peanut butter maple fudge brownie chunks

December 12, 2016

No-churn ice cream is the miracle of the year, quenching my inner desire to fill the kitchen with dusty appliances (ice cream makers need to be ginormous to work their magic). The freeze and whisk method is tedious.

If you were to forego the brownie pieces and fudge (?!!!), prep time would be about 15 minutes, plus 6 hours’ freezing time. Which is quicker than going to the shops.

No electric appliances needed. Just a whisk, 2 big bowls and a spoon.

Makes about a litre. Tastes so yummy you, er, won’t have time to take decent pictures….

Brownie

Use this brownie recipe. If you have leftovers that are too dry to eat, that’s fine (and will actually help to prevent the brownie pieces from sinking in the finished product).

Bake and cool the brownies completely
Chop into small chunks and spread out on a baking sheet (large but not too large to fit in the freezer…)

Fudge

Based on this recipe , but using only 3 ingredients.

1/2 cup / 100 ml maple syrup
85g (about 3tbsp) peanut butter
1/4 cup butter

Melt ingredients in a small saucepan, then boil until the mixture thickens. 2-5 minutes depending on how fast it’s boiling.

image

Pour over brownie pieces and freeze for up to an hour or so.

The fudge should be solidified over the brownie but not so hard you need a hacksaw to chop it again.

image

No-Churn Ice Cream
200g cream cheese
1 small can condensed milk
300ml double cream

Whisk the cream to stiff peaks.

In a separate bowl, stir the condensed milk and cheesecake together until there are no lumps.

Fold both mixtures together, beating to mix but not too fast or the mixture will deflate.

Fold in the fudge brownie pieces.

image

Freeze for 6 hours, no whisking, no breaking up of ice crystals. Simples. (Nb. Also tastes delicious when not-quite-frozen…)

image

Pork belly and Squash Burmese – Nonya Hybrid Curry

March 31, 2016

IMG_0700

Adapted from this Burmese pork and pumpkin curry recipe, I added fresh lemongrass, substituted ground turmeric with fresh, and parcooked the squash (roasting) to avoid chopping raw veg, saving time and preserving my delicate mitts.

Fresh lemongrass and turmeric are way better than fresh, freeze whatever’s not used. If fresh isn’t available, substitute dried ground turmeric, but I’m not sure if dried lemongrass would work as it would be difficult to rehydrate successfully to grind to a paste.

Tamarind brings sourness, coconut milk richness, but both could also be left out (neither are in the original recipe). Tomato makes it a bit sweet and mellow.

Ingredients

250-300g/ 0.5lb pork belly, diced
1/2 large squash
1 tomato
2tbsp vegetable oil
1tbsp shrimp paste (optional)
1 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp light soy sauce
1/2 tsp tamarind paste (optional)
200ml coconut milk – canned, or 2 tbsp/35g santan powder + water, or 50g creamed coconut + water (made up to 200ml)

Spice paste
1 small onion
2-5 cloves garlic
4 fresh green chillis
1 inch/thumb size piece fresh ginger
1 stalk fresh lemongrass
1 inch/2cm fresh turmeric
2tbsp ground coriander
1tsp ground cumin
1-2 tsp chilli powder/ dried chillis (optional)

IMG_0688

Method

Roast the squash cut side down in a roasting pan with 2tbsp water (to stop it drying out) 20-30 mins 200C, until the squash is soft enough to cut into chunks but still firm so it won’t disintegrate in the curry.

Grind ingredients for spice paste in a food processor/pestle and mortar (the latter will take heaps more time and elbow grease). If you’re a massive wimp, deseed the chillis.

Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan, fry the spice paste (rempah) until fragrant (a few minutes). Then add the tomato and fry a few minutes longer.

rempah

Brown the meat, then add the coconut milk and rest of the ingredients.

Simmmer for about 45 minutes or more, don’t let it boil too high or the meat will get dry.

Serve with white rice +++++

Kuih Bengka Ubi Kayu

February 28, 2016

kuihbengkaubikayu

“Kuih” is malay for cake, “bengka” means lard, in this case due to the appearance (kuihs are v dense, often chewy/ soft as tapioca/ glutinous rice/ rice flours are used); ubi kayu stands for tapioca.

In Malaysia, this would be made with fresh, grated tapioca, and cooked on a charcoal grill/ oven, so the top would be much more browned.

This kuih is one of the easiest to attempt outside of SE Asia if you have an oven, all ingredients are widely available from Asian/Chinese supermarkets.

Recipe adapted from this book; an incredible, compendium of Nonya recipes, thoroughly tried and tested by Straits Times food editors for modern and most Western kitchens.

Ingredients

500g grated tapioca (frozen pre grated is okay)
2tbsp tapioca flour
150 ml thick coconut milk
50-100g/ 1/4-1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp pandan essence (if you use extract, the colour will be a very (**ahem**) “vibrant”, likely radioactive, green

Method
Preheat oven to 180C/ Gasmark 5.

Mix all ingredients in a bowl. It will be quite gloopy and liquidy, so just stir until evenly mixed.

kuihbengkaubikayu-ingredients.

Immediately, pour into a banana leaf/ grease proof paper lined 7″ baking tin (use a smaller/ bigger tin if you prefer a taller/ shorter kuih)

Bake for 40 minutes

kuihbengkaubikayu-prebaked

Remove kuih from oven, and turn heat to 250C.

When preheated, bake for a further 10 minutes or until the top turns darker brown/ slightly crisp.

Don’t bake too long, or the kuih body will be tough.

kuihbengkaubikayu-baked

Cool completely, then cut into small pieces approximately 1-2 inches in size, and serve.

Will keep for a couple of days, after that it becomes hard and cardboardy.

Bukkumi – Korean sticky rice flour pancake (red bean)

February 16, 2016

bukkumi

I used Maangchi’s recipe for bukkumi, which is ridiculously easy. In the video she says these can be made in 10 minutes; as this was my first attempt, I ran over slightly but only just.

I used Just Hungry’s red bean paste recipe.

And also tried a green bean/ mung bean filling using Maangchi’s recipe again.

Adding black sesame seeds for nuttiness and a lil crunch.

The bukkumi are fried but not particularly unhealthy as only a small amount of oil is used, a tsp or so, just enough to grease the pan.

bukkumi_raw

Place on a baking tray lined with cling film or plastic as they’re ready. No touching or they’ll stick together. Freeze them as is, bagging when frozen solid. They keep for up to a month or so, cook straight from frozen.