27 July 2019

Hainanese Chicken Rice Pau

[ Collaboration with Dancing Chef and Singapore Home Cooks ]


* "Hainanese Chicken Rice" Pau using Hainanese Chicken Rice Paste *


Presenting my new creation using Dancing Chef Hainanese Chicken Rice Paste!

My family loves chicken rice, so I thought of a "on-the-go" finger food with chicken rice flavour that's different from the conventional.

The concept is like a kong bak bao or gua bao but chicken rice flavour :) In fact, this is versatile and can be made into the traditional enclosed bao too.


Chicken rice paste is added to the Pau dough; in addition I added pandan juice for the green colour Pau as I like the aroma of pandan chicken rice.


The Pau has a subtle taste of chicken rice (smells really aromatic during steaming!) and is good to eat on its own but even better with poached chicken, ginger sauce, chilli sauce as well as cucumber, chilli shreds and coriander. *Both the ginger sauce and chilli sauce have Dancing Chef chicken rice paste added too!

It's literally like eating chicken rice, without the rice!


Isn't this cute, I love small size finger food like this, which can be eaten in one or two bites :p

Preparing this Pau is not difficult, just a tad tedious, but trust me it will be popular, especially for those who love chicken rice and/or pau or both LOL :p


For the original chicken rice flavour Pau, the dough is made using Pau flour, baking powder, sugar, yeast/sugar/water mixture, chicken rice paste and water.

Mix all the ingredients together using spatula till a rough dough forms and then knead for 10 mins. Initially the dough might be a little wet and sticky, sprinkle just a little bit of flour will help but not too much, just keep kneading and the dough will turn smooth and non-sticky. Cover and proof for 30 mins.



For the pandan chicken rice flavour Pau, the dough is made using Pau flour, baking powder, sugar, yeast/sugar/water mixture, chicken rice paste and pandan juice.

Likewise, mix all the ingredients together using spatula till a rough dough forms and then knead for 10 mins. Initially the dough might be a little wet and sticky, sprinkle just a little bit of flour will help but not too much, just keep kneading and the dough will turn smooth and non-sticky. Cover and proof for 30 mins.


Once dough is proofed, roll it out to about 5-6mm, use a 7cm mould to stamp the dough skins. Gather the scraps and repeat. If the dough shrinks, let it rest for 5-10 mins before stamping again. I manage to get 7 pcs.

Next use a rolling pin to roll each dough skin into oval shape thickness about 3-4mm. Brush the dough skin with some olive oil, fold it into half, place onto a piece of pau or baking paper (cut into 6cm square), and finally proof for 30 mins. Once proofing is done, steam on high heat for 20 mins and the pau skin is ready!


Repeat the same steps for the pandan chicken rice dough.

My freshly steamed chicken rice flavour paus, they look quite good, don't they? The pau is quite soft and fluffy with nice aroma and subtle chicken rice taste, I couldn't resist eating it plain ;)


Hainanese Chicken Rice Pau
(Makes 14 small size portions, 7pcs of original flavour and 7pcs of pandan flavour)

(A) Pau dough

Original chicken rice flavour (7 pcs)
  • 100g Pau flour or Hong Kong flour
  • 1/2 tsp double acting baking powder
  • 20g caster sugar
  • 30g Dancing Chef Hainanese Chicken Rice Paste (include some oil in the packet)
  • 35-38g water
  • 1/4 heap tsp instant yeast
  • 1/4 heap tsp caster sugar
  • 1.5 tsp water
Pandan chicken rice flavour (7 pcs)
  • 100g Pau flour or Hong Kong flour
  • 1/2 tsp double acting baking powder
  • 20g caster sugar
  • 30g Dancing Chef Hainanese Chicken Rice Paste (include some oil in the packet)
  • 35-38g Pandan juice (blend 10 pandan leaves with 80-100g water, strain to get juice)
  • 1/4 heap tsp instant yeast
  • 1/4 heap tsp caster sugar
  • 1.5 tsp water
  1. Steps are the same for both flavours.
  2. Mix yeast, sugar and water in a small bowl, set aside till the mixture turns frothy.
  3. Add flour, baking powder and caster sugar in a large mixing bowl, stir till well blended.
  4. Add chicken rice paste, water (or pandan juice) and yeast mixture into the mixing bowl. Mix the ingredients together till a rough dough forms.
  5. Transfer the rough dough onto a kneading mat. Knead the dough for 10 mins. The dough may be a little wet and sticky initially, dust just a little bit of flour but not too much. Keep kneading and the dough will turn smooth and non-sticky.
  6. Cover and proof the dough (first proof) for 30 mins.
  7. Once dough is proofed, roll it out using rolling pin to about 5-6mm thickness.
  8. Use a 7cm scalloped round mould to stamp out the dough skins. Gather scraps and repeat. If the dough shrinks, rest for 5-10 mins before continuing. Total yield is 7 pieces for each flavour.
  9. Using the rolling pin to roll the dough skin into oval shape about 3-4mm thickness. Brush the surface with some olive oil, fold into half, place onto a piece of pau paper (6cm square). Repeat for all, cover and proof for another 30 mins (second proof).
  10. Once the dough skins are proofed, steam on high heat for 20 mins and the Pau are ready to serve. Best eaten warm.
(B) Poached chicken
  • 2-3 pieces boneless chicken thighs
  • 2 stalks spring onion, 3 slices ginger, 2 cloves garlic
  1. Bring a pot of water to boil, add chicken thigh, spring onion, ginger and garlic.
  2. Let the ingredients simmer for 10 mins.
  3. Remove the chicken thighs and place in iced water for 10 mins.
  4. Drain and brush the thighs with sesame oil, set aside till ready to use.
(C) Chilli sauce
  • 2 pcs big red chilli
  • 2 pcs chilli padi
  • 20g Dancing Chef Hainanese Chicken Rice Paste
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • Juice from 1 lime
  1. Blend all the ingredients in a food processor till fine and well-blended. Adjust seasonings to taste.
(D) Ginger & Spring Onion Sauce
  • 20g Dancing Chef Hainanese Chicken Rice Paste
  • 2 stalks spring onion, finely chopped
  • 80-100ml chicken stock
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • corn starch water
  1. Add chicken rice paste and spring onion to a small pot, stir fry on low heat for 30s.
  2. Add water and sugar, stir till well-mixed.
  3. Thicken with corn starch water if the sauce is too watery.

(E) Assemble
  • 14 pcs original and pandan flavour chicken rice pau (from A)
  • 14 pcs chicken thigh (from B, cut the chicken thigh into sizes that fit the pau)
  • Cucumber, coriander, chilli shreds
  • Chilli sauce, Ginger & spring onion sauce (from C & D)
  1. To serve, take a piece of pau, open up, place cucumber, chicken thigh, coriander and chilli into the pau, and finally drizzle some chilli sauce and ginger spring onion sauce.
  2. Best eaten warm.

NOTES:

  • This pau is best eaten warm, it will turn a little hard when cold (just like mantou). To reheat, steam for 5 mins. 
  • As no preservatives, bread improvers or softener is added, the pau is best eaten on the same day, or keep in fridge for 1-2 days. Reheat before eating.
  • I made the pau to be small size, eaten in 1-2 bites. For regular or bigger size pau, increase quantity of ingredients and use bigger mould to stamp the dough.
  • This dough can be made into conventional enclosed pau too, or simply eaten as mantou.



This Pau is visually appealing and taste yummy, suitable for parties and gatherings, especially for the upcoming National Day!

So this is also my tribute to Singapore's 54th Birthday :)



Hope that all of you like my creation :)

Dancing Chef™️: One Paste, Many DishesBe (surprisingly) different

#DancingChefSG

AUGUST PROMOTION:  Dancing ChefTM Pastes 100g 2 for S$5.00 (UP: S$2.85) Available at Cold Storage, Giant, NTUC FairPrice and Sheng Siong

Give it a try today with Dancing Chef convenient pastes!

25 April 2019

Pandan Chiffon Cake (Cooked Dough Method)

This recipe has been in draft form for over a year now! I've made it a few times already, yet been procrastinating about blogging, as usual. Getting more and more lazy to write these days. *sigh*

Anyways, I seriously want to record it down formally because I really love this recipe. Over the past decade I've baked many Pandan Chiffon Cake and other flavours of Chiffon Cake, so far the cooked dough method is my favourite as the cake always turn out to be more moist and tender, and I don't have to use any baking powder or cream of tartar using cooked dough method.

However, it's not easy to get it right all the time, so there are some flavours of chiffon cake that I still stick to the usual method. Actually cooked dough method is not that far off from the usual method, just one more step involved in "cooking the batter" before folding in the meringue. Somehow this yields a more moist cake. Personally I prefer moist and tender chiffon, don't like the drier texture ones.

Chiffon cake is still one of my favourite cakes to bake, but of course the challenge is, how to get it consistent and it is something I'm still learning. Hope that in time to come, I can bake more flavours and achieve good results all the time!


Pandan Chiffon Cake
(makes one cake using 21cm chiffon pan)

Ingredients
  • 50g unsalted butter (or neutral tasting cooking oil)
  • 90g cake flour
  • 60g coconut milk
  • 60g homemade pandan extract (blend 15-20 pandan leaves with a bit of water, strain and let mixture rest overnight, use the dark green extract that settles at the bottom)
  • 5 egg yolks (M/L size egg, between 60-65g)
  • 5 egg whites (M/L size egg, between 60-65g)
  • 80g caster sugar


Method
  1. Preheat oven to 160 degree celsius, top and bottom heat.
  2. Melt butter in a small pot over very low heat. Once butter is melted, add in cake flour and stir quickly to form a dough.
  3. Add coconut milk and stir the mixture till dough is well-mixed into a thick batter.
  4. Add pandan extract and mix well into batter.
  5. Add egg yolks one at a time, mix well into batter. Batter will be thick with texture like soft custard.
  6. Add egg whites into mixing bowl with pinch of salt, beat using electric mixer at high speed till stiff peak meringue.
  7. Add one scoop of meringue into batter, stir quickly to mix well. 
  8. Add 1/3 of remaining meringue into batter, fold quickly but gently to mix the meringue with batter.
  9. Add the next 1/3 of meringue into batter, fold quickly but gently to mix the meringue with batter.
  10. Finally pour the batter into the bowl with remaining meringue, fold quickly but gently.
  11. Pour the batter into chiffon pan, give the pan 2-3 gentle knocks on the counter top, then send into oven to bake at 160 degree celsius for 45-50 mins. *if the top of the cake browns too fast, cover with a piece of aluminium foil after 30 mins.
  12. After the cake is baked (if necessary, test using a skewer or cake tester, the stick should be clean), invert the pan over and let it cool down completely before unmoulding.
  13. After the cake has cooled completely, unmould from pan. Cut into slices to serve. The cake is actually best served the next day for flavours to fully develop. If eating the next day, store in airtight container and cut the next day.



This cake is one of my family's favourite cake, and also well-liked by many of my friends who tried it. Although I would like to bake it more often, I'm always lazy to make pandan extract :p And pandan extract doesn't keep for long, so each time I only make small quantity, making it a tedious task whenever I feel like baking.

Oh well, good things never come easy and takes effort and time, right? Anyways, I'm so glad that I finally completed this blog post! Yes!

01 March 2019

Asam Laksa

How many of you are like me, love to eat Asam Laksa but scared of overwhelming fishy smell, and also dislike handling raw mackerel fish or Ikan Kembong, the small fish that's used to make the laksa?

The thing is, I've been craving for Asam Laksa, missing the flavourful, tangy and spicy fish broth with smooth & chewy rice noodles as well as the different textures/colours toppings for the laksa. And no, Asam Laksa is definitely not available where I stay currently (in Thailand).

I'm so glad to find Ayam Brand Sardines in Extra Virgin Olive Oil at the supermarkets here! It has nearly no fishy smell (probably because the sardines are brined in EVOO) and so much easier to handle (fish bones are teeny tiny and can be mashed up easily, or just remove the centre bone with ease).


This is my quick and easy Asam Laksa, without having to go through the trouble of cleaning raw Ikan Kembong fish, preparing complicated fish broth or removing bones from the fish etc etc. Do note that I replaced or omitted a few ingredients as they are not available where I stay.

What I did was, blend the rempah spice paste ingredients with some EVOO brine from the can, then stir-fry the rempah using the remaining brine as well as the sardines together until fragrant. Next add water, instant fish or ikan bilis cube (yes, it's cheating but hey, I'm looking for quick & easy & fuss-free) and Thai basil, boil for 10-15 mins, season with tamarind paste, salt and sugar and viola, the asam laksa soup broth is ready!

Finally, cook some rice noodles, add toppings of choice (I add more sardine fish, chopped salad leaves, pineapple, cucumber, red onion, chilli padi, lime juice as well as Hei Ko or sweet shrimp paste (which I brought from SG last year to make rojak! Yay!) and a bowl of yummy Asam Laksa is ready!


Asam Laksa
(serves 3 big or 4 small servings)

(A) Rempah/Spice Paste
  • 5 pcs shallots
  • 3 dried chilli, soak in hot water till softened and remove seeds
  • 2 big red chilli, remove seeds
  • 1 pc lemongrass, bottom 3" only, cut into small slices
  • 1 cm turmeric root, cut into small slices
  • 1 tsp belachan, toasted
  • 1-2 tbsp brine from Ayam Brand Sardines in EVOO
  1. Add all the ingredients into a blender/food chopper and blend till smooth paste.
(B) Fish broth
  • 1 can Ayam Brand Sardines in EVOO
  • Rempah spice paste from (A)
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 pcs instant fish stock cube (or ikan bilis cube)
  • 6 pcs thai basil
  • 3 tbsp instant tamarind paste
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  1. Add the remaining brine from the can, all the sardines (not necessary to remove bones) and the rempah spice paste into a pot, stir-fry the mixture till aromatic for a few minutes. Crush and mash up the sardines when frying.
  2. Add water, stock cube and Thai basil, and bring to boil on medium heat. After the broth boils, lower heat to low and simmer for 10-15 mins.
  3. Season with instant tamarind paste, sugar and salt (to taste) and the broth is ready to use.
(C) Asam Laksa and Garnish
  • 1 can Ayam Brand Sardines in EVOO
  • 200g thick rice noodles (dried ones)
  • Fish broth from (B)
  • 1/2 pc cucumber, julienned
  • 1/4 pc pineapple, sliced into small pieces
  • 1 red onion, cut into thin slices
  • Handful of mint leaves
  • Handful of salad leaves, chopped
  • 1-2 pcs chilli padi, cut into small slices
  • 3-4 wedges lime
  • 3-4 tbsp hei ko / sweet shrimp paste
  • *torch ginger, omitted as not available
  1. Open another can of sardines, remove centre bones from the sardines if desired and tear the sardines into flakes.
  2. Cook the thick rice noodles for 10-12 mins till the noodles are fully cooked, al dente. Drain and rinse in ice water. Add the rice noodles into 3-4 individual bowls.
  3. Scoop the fish broth into the bowls of noodles.
  4. Add desired toppings - sardine flakes, salad leaves, red onion, pineapple, cucumber, mint leaves, chilli padi, lime and hei ko. 
  5. Mix well to eat and best enjoyed hot!

I'm really pleased with how my quick and easy Asam Laksa turned out! The broth is quite flavourful, tangy and spicy, but not fishy and lighter on the palate as well, love the combination of different colours and textures of the toppings. Even the hubby enjoyed it and said it was not bad at all.

Glad that I can cook this dish anytime I have cravings now. And also thinking of making more dishes with Ayam Brand Sardines in Extra Virgin Olive Oil =D

13 January 2019

Yuzu Cupcakes with Yuzu Buttercream Frosting

Happy New Year! Oooh, it's 2019 already and I've neglected my blog for such a long time :p


I still wish to blog but just that these days it seemed too much effort to do so :p Posting on IG and FB is much faster than having to edit photos on my laptop or PC, and having to think of the topic to write. Haha, I'm simply lazy.

Anyways, today's topic is on YUZU! Yes, my ultimate obsession. I asked around, people who know Yuzu all love Yuzu to bits lol. And like me, besides Yuzu foodstuff such as yuzu tea, yuzu crackers, yuzu cookies, yuzu cakes, they are also into other Yuzu-related merchandise like yuzu lip balm, yuzu shower gel, Yuzu cleanser etc etc =D

I digress :p

Ok, so my family went to Toyko in December and when I saw these gorgeous babies, I simply have to lug them back. Needless to say these couldn't be found in Thailand and even back in SG, they are rare and super expensive. When I saw them at Tsukiji market, I just went crazy and bought a box of L size ones (9 pcs), half a dozen small ones and half a dozen organic ones.

Have been thinking about what to do with these babies, I mean I have to use them up asap while they still look so fresh and plump. In the past years, I've already created a number of recipes using Yuzu, namely Yuzu Marmalade, Yuzu Chiffon Cake, Yuzu Marmalade Yogurt Cake, Yuzu Curd, Yuzu Curd Meringue Cupcake, Yuzu Curd Tart.  



So far have already made a few bottles of Yuzu Marmalade and since I've not made cupcakes for a long time and yet to try making Yuzu buttercream, I adapted one of my old recipes to create these delectable mini Yuzu cupcakes with Yuzu buttercream frosting. 


I'm so pleased with the results :)

The cupcake itself is moist and tender and good to eat on its own, but even better paired with Yuzu buttercream. The Yuzu buttercream frosting is surprisingly light with the wonderful aroma of yuzu; normally I'm not a fan of buttercream but this buttercream I found myself stealing mouthfuls of it! Sinful I know, but it tastes so yummy!


My recipe yields 20 pieces of mini cupcakes, I ate quite a few myself and gifted the remaining away. And my friends enjoyed the cupcake too, they liked it that they are not too sweet and oh yes the yuzu smelled so heavenly.


So here's sharing the recipes for making the cupcakes as well as the buttercream.

Ingredients for the cupcake include cake flour, baking powder, salt, unsalted butter, caster sugar (rub with yuzu zest), eggs, fresh milk, fresh yuzu juice and yuzu marmalade.

If you don't have fresh yuzu, you can simply use the Korean Citron tea and omit the yuzu zest and yuzu juice. This recipe can also be used for orange or lemon.

For buttercream, I use the Italian meringue method, ingredients are caster sugar, water, egg whites, unsalted butter and yuzu marmalade. Likewise yuzu marmalade can be replaced with Korean Citron tea or orange marmalade. And it's not necessary to use the Italian meringue method, Swiss meringe method works fine too. I have shared several buttercream frosting using Swiss meringue method before, please search for them.



Yuzu Cupcakes
(Makes 20 pcs with 4cm base cases)
* this recipe can be adapted to lemon or orange flavour
Yuzu cupcake
  • 150g cake flour
  • 1.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 115g unsalted butter
  • 120g caster sugar
  • Zest of 1 large & 1 small fresh yuzu or 2 medium ones (omit if don't have) 
  • 2 eggs (medium size about 60g)
  • 60g fresh milk
  • 65g Yuzu marmalade (or Korean Citron Tea)
  • 25g fresh Yuzu juice (from 1 large & 1 small fresh yuzu or 2 medium ones, replace with yuzu marmalade if don't have)
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degree celsius, conventional mode.
  2. Line the cupcake cases on a baking tray. Set aside.
  3. Sift cake flour, baking powder and salt together. Set aside.
  4. Zest the fresh yuzu and rub the yuzu zest into the caster sugar until well-mixed. Set aside.
  5. Squeeze fresh yuzu juice (reserve the seeds, pulp and peel for making more marmalade). 
  6. Mix fresh milk, yuzu marmalade and fresh yuzu juice. Set aside.
  7. Add butter and yuzu caster sugar (from 4) into mixing bowl, beat on medium high speed using k-beater until smooth and creamy, about 4 mins. Stop to scrap sides of bowl, beat for another minute.
  8. Reduce to medium low speed, add eggs gradually and beat till just mixed.
  9. Add the flour mixture (from 3) in 3 additions, alternating with the yuzu milk mixture (from 6) in 2 additions. Beat till just blended, finish off by removing mixing bowl from mixer, scrap sides of bowl and fold gently.
  10. Using an ice-cream scoop or spoon, fill batter into the cupcake cases, about 2/3 full.
  11. Bake at 180 degree celsius, conventional mode, for 15-18 mins (toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean).
  12. Remove from oven and let the cupcakes cool completely before frosting.
Yuzu Buttercream
(makes enough buttercream to frost 2 batches of cupcakes)
  • 80g caster sugar
  • 20g water
  • 75g egg whites (about 2 eggs)
  • 200g unsalted butter
  • 5-6 tbsp Yuzu marmalade (or Korean Citron tea)
  1. Add sugar and water into a heavy bottom pot, bring to boil to 118 degree celsius (measure using a candy thermometer).
  2. When the sugar mixture reaches 100 degree celsius, start whipping the egg whites on medium high speed. *if the egg whites already reaches soft peak and sugar mixture has not reached 118 degree celsius, shift the speed to low and let it continue whipping)
  3. Once the sugar mixture reaches 118 degree celsius, bring the pot to the mixer, add the sugar syrup very slowly into the egg white. Switch mixer to high speed and whip the mixture till it cools down completely.
  4. Place the entire mixing bowl into the fridge for a few hours (till temperature reaches less than 10 degree celsius).
  5. Place the mixing bowl back to the electric mixer, add the cold cubed butter piece by piece and beat at medium high speed, till mixture turns into buttercream and no more liquid.
  6. Add Yuzu marmalade into the buttercream and whisk till well-incorporated.
  7. Buttercream frosting is ready to be used. Fit piping bag with star nozzle (I use Wilton 1M), fill buttercream into bag and pipe onto the cupcakes.


As I have more than enough Yuzu buttercream to frost the cupcakes (only made 1 batch of cupcakes), I decided to make a petite 4.5" size cake to use up the buttercream.

Used half quantity of the cupcake recipe above, and the batter is just nice for a 4.5" round cake pan. Bake at 180 degree celsius for about 40-45 mins. Once the cake cools down, slice the cake sideways to make 2 layers. I fill the layers with Yuzu marmalade, frost the whole cake with the leftover Yuzu buttercream and did some simple rose piping using Wilton 1M tip.


The cake wasn't very nicely frosted as I was rushing for time, but still it turned out really yummy! A 4.5" size cake can serve around 4-5 slices of cake. If using full quantity of the cupcake recipe, I reckon it'll be good for a 6" cake.

I still have some yuzu left, what shall I make next? Chiffon cake is definitely a must as it's my favourite. Not sure if I have time to create new recipes as going to be busy with CNY cookies baking soon!

Follow me on my Instagram : dreamersloft17 as I post regularly there now :) Ciao!

15 October 2018

Beef & Chicken Rendang Burgers

[ Collaboration with Dancing Chef and Singapore Home Cooks ]

* Beef & Chicken Rendang Sliders using Padang Rendang Paste *


I'm very fond of making mini burgers because I think they look so cute and I feel less sinful about eating them sine they are mini ;p

I've been making different flavours of sliders such as classic beef & cheese, fish fillet and teriyaki chicken, this time I thought of using #DancingChef #RendangPaste to create my very own Beef & Chicken Sliders, an East-meet-West creation.


For the chicken patty, I use boneless chicken thigh and cut them into pieces around 5-6cm. Marinate the pieces with the Padang Rendang paste for around 2-3hrs. Coat the marinated chicken with tapioca flour, rest for 5 mins then deep-fry on medium heat till crispy and golden brown.

For the beef patty, I use minced beef; marinate the beef with the paste for 2-3hrs, shape into mini patties around 5cm, then pan-fry on medium heat till browned on both sides.

*If your family doesn't take beef, simply use chicken only and omit beef.

I also use the leftover paste to make a thick and creamy sauce, to add to the burger as well as a dipping sauce for the fries. The sauce tastes so aromatic, creamy and yummy! Similar to McD's curry sauce but much more fragrant and rich. I like!


And not forgetting the mini burger buns which I baked using the Yudane method, which yields a soft and fluffy texture, very suitable for making burgers. Dough weight for each bun is 35g, and each burger is around 5 - 5.5cm in diameter.

If you don't have time to bake your own burger buns, Gardenia and Sunshine have mini butter rolls which can be used as well.


Assembling the burgers is always fun, feel free to add any ingredients you fancy or none at all! For me, besides the chicken and beef patties, I added just coral salad leaves, cucumber, rendang sauce, as well as some cherry tomatoes and pickled gherkins as decorations.


Just look at these tantalising sliders, I bet you couldn't stop at one! They make great party food and everyone especially kids love burgers right?

The rendang marinate and sauce goes really well with the chicken and beef, it's a western burger yet with our favourite curry and spices flavouring that we Asians love. The paste is not overwhelming and not too spicy, even my son who doesn't take much spicy food enjoyed the burger.

I'm going to serve these for my next gathering!


Beef & Chicken Rendang Sliders
(Makes 12 sliders)

  • 250g boneless chicken thigh, cut into 6 pieces around 5-6cm
  • 300g minced beef
  • 1 packet Dancing Chef Padang Rendang Paste
  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped
  • 150g coconut milk
  • 1 stalk lemongrass, smashed
  • 3 pieces kaffir lime leaves, remove centre vein and tear into pieces
  • 1 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • Tapioca flour, cooking oil
  • Salad leaves, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, pickled gherkins, mayonnaise
  1. Marinate chicken pieces wth 2 tsp of rendang paste for 2-3hrs.
  2. Marinate minced beef with 1 heap tbsp of rendang paste and finely chopped shallots for 2-3hrs.
  3. Rendang sauce: Add remaining rendang paste (around 50-55g left), coconut milk, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves into a cooking pot, bring to boil, stirring continuously to prevent burning. Add desiccated coconut and reduce heat, simmer till sauce thickens. Set aside.
  4. Coat the marinated chicken pieces with tapioca flour and set aside for 5 mins. Deep-fry the chicken pieces using medium heat till golden brown and crispy.
  5. Shape the minced beef into patties around 5-6cm diameter each. Pan-fry the beef patties using medium heat till browned on both sides.
  6. Assemble the burgers: Slice burger bun into half, spread a dollop of mayonnaise on the bottom half of the bun, top with a few pieces of salad leaves, follow by a slice of cucumber. Add a tsp of rendang sauce, top with chicken or beef patty, add another tsp of rendang sauce, cover with top half of burger bun. Finally decorate top of burger bun with halved cherry tomatoes or sliced pickled gherkins using toothpick or skewers.
*If not using beef, replace with another 250g boneless chicken thigh.

Mini Burger Buns (bonus recipe!)
(dough weight is about 500g, makes 14 buns about 35g each)

Japanese Yudane
(prepare night before)
  • 50g bread flour
  • 50g boiling water
  1. Place the bread flour in a heat-proof bowl. Add boiling water and quickly mix the flour with the water using a spatula.
  2. Initially the dough will be bits and pieces but keep pressing and bring the dough together, a rough dough will form.
  3. Cover the bowl with clingwrap and once the dough cool to room temperature, transfer the bowl to chill in fridge till next day.

Dough
  • Yeast mixture: 20g lukewarm water, 6g instant dry yeast, 5g caster sugar
  • 200g bread flour
  • 1 recipe Japanese Yudane (above recipe)
  • 1 recipe yeast mixture (above recipe)
  • 50g water 
  • 45g caster sugar
  • 2g fine sea salt 
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 egg white (reserve remaining half for brushing on burger bun)
  • 40g unsalted butter, cubed and slightly softened
  1. In a small bowl, mix water, yeast and sugar and let the mixture rest for a few minutes to turn frothy.
  2. Add bread flour, Yudane, yeast mixture, water, sugar, salt, egg yolk and egg white into a mixing bowl. Using a dough hook, mix the dough ingredients on low speed (speed 1 KitchenAid) for a minute, then switch to medium low speed (speed 2) and knead the dough till rough dough forms. 
  3. Add the butter, piece by piece into the dough. Once all the butter cubes are added, turn up mixer speed to medium (Speed 4) and knead the dough for about 10-12 mins. The dough is ready when it leaves the bottom of the bowl and "rides up" to the top of the dough hook. Or use the window pane method by stretching a piece of dough, it will be stretchy and almost translucent without breaking.
  4. The dough is quite soft and slightly sticky, oil both hands and take out the dough from the mixing bowl. Lightly knead for a minute, round the dough and place the dough into a well-oiled bowl for first proof. Cover the bowl with clingwrap and let the dough proof for about 30-45 mins or till dough doubles in size. *based on summer weather, hot & humid
  5. After 30-45 mins, take out the dough and knead lightly to press out the gas. Divide the dough into desired portions. Dough weight is about 500g, I divided the dough into 14 pieces of 35g each. Slightly round the dough portions, cover them with clingwrap and rest for 10 mins.
  6. After 10 mins, tighten and round the dough (by cupping the dough in the middle of your palm), and place the dough on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Cover loosely with clingwrap and proof for 45 mins. *Preheat the oven at 200 degree celsius after 30 mins.
  7. Bake the burger buns at 190-200 degree celsius for 10-12 mins. *turn down temperature to 180 or 190 degree celsius, and cover buns with aluminum foil if the buns browned too fast.
  8. Let the buns cool on a wire rack. If keeping till next day, cool completely before storing in an airtight box.

14 September 2018

Khanom Chor Muang & Khanom Jeab Nok (Thai Steamed Flower & Bird Dumplings)

Recent months, I've been intrigued by Thai desserts, especially the traditional ones that are served to the Thai Royalty since ancient times. I had wanted to go to BKK to attend classes but couldn't find the time.

Then, last weekend I happened to be at northern Chonburi and took the opportunity to visit a Thai Traditional Dessert Cafe called Hom's House at the Bang Saen area. Totally fell in love with the cafe, as well as the desserts served there!

My desire to make these intricate and pretty looking desserts was so strong and after watching several YouTube videos and researching in online recipes, I thought I would start with this Khanom Chor Muang as out of all the desserts I tried, I love this the most, as it's both sweet and savoury. It's basically a chicken dumpling but palm sugar is added to the chicken filling so it's sweet. I thought it's more apt as an appetiser but the Thais categorised it as a dessert.

Anyways, bought ingredients, tools and even similar serve ware (as the cafe) and this whole week I'm basically eating and breathing Chor Muang!! LOL!!


Proudly presenting my Khanom Chor Muang which is Thai Steamed Flower Dumplings and Khanom Jeab Nok which is Bird Dumplings. For the flower dumpling, anchan or butterfly bluepea flower is used as colouring; I wanted to get a pink flower so used beetroot but the colour turned out white -_-

A crimping tool (the thais call it Chor Muang tweezer) is used to shape the flower petals, yes petal by petal. It's quite therapeutic I must say. The Bird is much harder to shape and crimp!


All in all, I made three batches (five actually but threw out two - problems with cooking the dough and a particular recipe). So why three? The first batch (above picture), I used beetroot to colour the flowers pink but they turned out white. In addition, the texture of the dumpling is slightly different from what I ate, it's a bit hard and less soft and chewy.

The second batch (below picture), I intensified the beetroot water and the colour turned out more visible but it's more orangey than pink -__-. I also experimented with a different flour to try to get better texture but failed.

As for the third & final batch (same picture below - in blue), I changed the proportion of the flours used and hey, the texture turned out slightly closer to the one I tried! Yippeee! In addition, I used another crimping tweezer to create a different flower. Can see the difference? There are 2 videos below that show both crimping.


Anyways, I'm pleased that I managed to make this dessert! It's definitely not 100% yet, but I'm satisfied for now. Hopefully will make more improvements along the way. Let me rest from Chor Muang for some time first :p

Here's sharing my process of making Chor Muang. Like I said, this is not a perfect recipe yet yah. The full recipe will be after the brief explanations.

First step, cooking the chicken filling. Ingredients are simple, minced chicken, onion, coriander root, garlic, palm sugar, salt, white pepper, fish sauce and oil.


First of all, pound the coriander root with garlic and white pepper into a paste. In a frying pan, add the cooking oil, saute the paste till fragrant, then add onion and chicken. Finally season with palm sugar, fish sauce and salt (to taste). The filling shouldn't be too wet else difficult to wrap into the dough later.


Second step, will be the dough. Ingredients include rice flour, tapioca starch, arrowroot starch (or mung bean starch), glutinous rice flour, coconut milk, water (which can be coloured according to preference).


I use butterfly bluepea flower for blue, beetroot for pink and just water for white (the bird).


Mix all the ingredients together to form a runny batter. If necessary use your hand to do the mixing as there might be bits of undissolved flour. Alternatively, sieve the batter after mixing. I use my hand LOL!


Next comes the cooking of the batter into dough. Pour the batter into a COLD, NON-STICK pan, it's important! If the pan is hot, it will cook the batter to a rubbery dough (yes I tried it, it's one of a batch I threw out). Cook the batter using low heat (I'm using electric induction cooker, temperature is 60 degree celsius), stir constantly. It will get thicker and sticky and eventually come together in a dough. It took around 8-10 mins per batch colour. Non-stick pan is very useful here, makes it easier to cook the dough. And the pan is clean after each batch, no need to clean the pan between batches.


Now, the dough will still be very sticky, sprinkle some tapioca starch on a mat and knead the dough till smooth and not so sticky (it will still be a little tacky like soft play dough, when pull apart it stretches a little). Basically the dough will be slightly hot to touch initially and knead till it's barely warm.


Third step, wrapping the filling into the dough and crimp into shape! Please refer to the pictures below and a short video on the steps. Each dough ball is around 10.5g-11g. Filling is about half teaspoon.

For this particular flower design, the crimping tweezer is like a leaf shape. A bit tough initially, but after practising a few, it became manageable. Remember to dust with some tapioca starch in between crimps, otherwise the dough will stick onto the tweezer.




Fourth and final step, steaming the dumplings. Prepare a steamer on medium high heat. Place a banana leaf onto the steamer, brush with some cooking oil to prevent the dumplings from sticking to the leaf. Place the dumplings onto the leaf, using a spray bottle to spray some water onto the dumplings to prevent them from drying. Steam for 10 mins, after they are done, brush the surface of the dumplings with oil to give a little shine and prevent them from drying. 


Here are the before steaming pictures of the "pink" flower and the birdies, so cute right? But seriously they look nice but difficult to shape and too much dough :p


Yep, the "pink" flowers became white.


And so I made a second batch! For the first batch, I merely soak cubes of beetroot into cold water, probably that's why the colour wasn't intensed enough. This batch, I blended the beetroot and soak it in hot water for a longer amount of time. The colour turned out much better and I was quite happy!
 

BUT, after steaming, the colour turned out orangey rather than pink pink! Oh well -_- maybe next time try another type of natural colour or just use food colouring? Hmmm....


For the second batch, I also replaced arrowroot starch with mung bean starch to see if the texture of the dumpling would improve. Nope, didn't make much difference. 

And so I made my third batch! Increased the amount of tapioca starch and reduced rice flour, and also used a different crimping tweezer, which is more squarish shape. Below is another video of how the crimping looks like.


 

Hope that the explanations above are useful! Here's the full recipe.

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Khanom Chor Muang ~ Thai Steamed Flower Dumpling
(each batch of dough weighs about 130g, makes 11-12 flower dumplings or 8-9 bird dumplings )

(A) Chicken Filling (enough to make 3 batches of dumplings)
  • 150g chicken thigh, minced
  • 70g onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1-2 coriander root
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 25g palm sugar
  • 1.5-2 tbsp fish sauce, to taste
  • Pinch salt, to taste
  • 2 tsp cooking oil
  1. Pound the garlic, coriander root and white pepper into a paste.
  2. In a frying pan, add cooking oil on medium heat.
  3. Add paste (from 1) and saute till fragrant. 
  4. Add onion and fry till slightly translucent.
  5. Add minced chicken and fry till cooked. Use spatula and break up the minced chicken into smaller pieces during frying.
  6. Season with palm sugar, fish sauce and salt, to taste.
  7. If filling is too wet, turn up heat and simmer till sauce dries up. The filling is just a little moist.
  8. Dish and set aside.

(B) Dough (quantity is for one batch, repeat to get 3 batches)
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 2 tbsp tapioca starch
  • 2 tsp arrowroot starch or mung bean starch
  • 2 tsp glutinous rice flour
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp butterfly bluepea water or beetroot water or just water
  • Butterfly pea flower water - soak 10g bluepea flower in 50g hot water for at least 30 mins.
  • Beetroot water - blend 15-20g beetroot and soak in 50g hot water for at least 30 mins.
  1.  Mix the 4 types of flour/starch together.
  2. Add coconut milk and mix well till no bits of flour.
  3. Add bluepea water/beetroot water/water and mix well.
  4. Sieve the batter to get rid of fine bits of flour (or use hand to mix the batter).
  5. Add the batter into COLD frying pan on very low heat. Stir the batter till it thickens and eventually comes together into a dough. Each batch takes 8-10 mins. Repeat for 3 batches. The dough will be sticky.
  6. Sprinkle tapicoa starch onto a mat, knead the dough till barely warm, and texture less sticky.
  7. Dough weight is around 125-130g. *For the flower dumpling, divide dough into 11-12 pcs, each piece around 10.5g to 11g. For the bird dumpling, divide dough into 8-9 pcs, each around 14-15g)
  8. Shape dough to circle/bowl, scoop half teaspoon of chicken filling into the centre, close up the dough and roll into a ball. *for the bird dumpling, after closing the dough, pinch some excess dough to form the head and neck of the bird.
  9. Use crimping tweezer to crimp the ball into flowers. *For the bird, crimp lines for the bird's body. 
  10. For the bird's beak, cut carrot into small triangles and stick the carrot into the head. For the eyes, stick black sesame seeds.
  11. Prepare a steamer on high heat, place banana leaves into the steamer. Once water boils, brush the banana leaves with oil and place the dumplings onto the leaves. Spray the dumplings with water.
  12. Steam the dumplings for 10 mins. Once done, brush the surface of the dumplings with some oil.
  13. Scoop the dumplings into serving plate and serve with fried garlic, lettuce, coriander and chilli.
  14. Best eaten warm and on the same day.

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Hope the recipe and videos would be useful! Below are more food porn LOL!
Enjoy!







It has been an exciting week for me to make these dumplings. Hope to find time to attempt more Thai desserts, stay tuned!