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Monday, November 18, 2013

Homemade Marshmallow

Short post today. I just wanted to share some pictures on the marshmallow that I made a couple of weekends ago.

I am not a big marshmallow fan. But I am curious about making it. There's a recipe for it in one of my cookbooks: Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It. I've made several recipes from this book and they turned out successful so I thought I tried.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Vegan Lasagna

This is a late post. I made this two months ago and just now gotten around to putting the post together.

We have been slowly eating towards a more vegetarian diet, changing up food composition so that the meat plays a more complimentary role instead of taking the center stage. I started adding more beans to numerous meal for the added proteins.With that I have been making this lasagna once every a couple of months. I so much prefer it to the cheese and meat-filled lasagna that just sits heavy on the stomach after eating. This one is full of good veggies and just as tasty as the meat version.

I have made this so often now that I don't even remember what recipe inspired me. It started with a recipe out there for sure but over the course of the year I've changed it up quite a bit. I'm using a lot more veggies and less pasta. It also has ballooned from 1 pyrex container to 2 pyrex containers now so it is enough to feed both of us for 5 days.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Soft Pretzels

Now that it's getting cooler I am finding myself baking more on the weekends. This weekend I wanted to make these soft pretzels from Peter Reinhart's Artisan Bread Every Day. I think I am slowly baking through this book. This is my 7th recipe from it.

As with all the other recipes in this book, the dough requires overnight resting and fermentation in the fridge so I started it on Saturday. It is a simple recipe, just mix all the ingredients in the mixer.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Fruit-filled Jam Thumbprint

This is fruit-filled jam thumbprint from Peter Reinhart's Artisan Bread Every Day. I made 1/3 recipe.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Heirloom Tomatoes and Fresh Salsa

Heirloom tomatoes was on sale last week at my grocery store. They looked really good and I was planning on buying some ripe tomatoes to make fresh salsa. It is getting cooler and cooler here and some trees have started to turn. I am not ready for the cooler weather yet. This is my attempt to hold on to however many days of warmness we have left.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Happy Friday!

I felt like posting today so wanted to wish everyone a HAPPY FRIDAY and a very happy weekend! The weather has been cooler here in the morning. It was 56 degrees on my way to work at 7.30 AM. BRRRRR, I miss summer already. Though it is nice to have a cooler mornings on the weekend to sleep in. I also started getting more inspired and excited to do more baking when it's cooler, as I'm sure everyone are.

Aside from some baking and cooking this weekend, we are also going to see Defending the Caveman. I'm really excited! The synopsis sounds hilarious.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Rustic Cognac-Apple Pie

This is a rendition of Rustic Armagnac-Apple Pie from Vegetarian Times (VT). I've never heard of Armagnac before. According to wiki, Armagnac is an aged brandy from the Armagnac region in Gascony, southwest France. I did not see Armagnac in the liquor store so I bought brandy instead. Brandy is already expensive as it is - $9 for a 100ml bottle. I don't really want to know how much an aged brandy cost :).

It is a tasty pie and I like that it's easy to put together.  When I was putting this together, I felt the amount of dried fruits used is a bit overwhelming. I only make 1/2 the recipe and the dried fruits filled over half a 2-cup pyrex container. Dried fruits has quite a bit of sugar in it so I thought it would be overly sweet. But it turned out not too sweet at all and I did not notice all the dried fruits while eating it.

One note on the crust though. While it is good, it does not even hold a candle to my favorite cream cheese pie crust from Rose Levy Beranbaum. Next time I made this pie I will use this pie crust.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


I have been wanting to make bagels for a while now and finally did a couple of weekends ago. It is an easy recipe but it does take two days as it requires overnight resting.

The recipe I used is from Peter Reinhart's Artisan Bread Every Day. I found the recipe online at Epicurious. Epicurious has printed the recipe from the book with permission so I would not print the recipe here. But I am going to regal you with step by step photos.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

ABC: Raspberry-Almond Braided Bread

Hello ABC-er! I'm sorry I've been so absent lately. I actually made the Blueberry Hand Pies last month but never got around to processing the photos and posting! I will add the photos to my next ABC post.

For this bread, the recipe yield 2 breads and they looked huge! So I made 1/2. I was so excited about it. It looked and sounded so good and I figured I could use my stash of homemade lemon curd that I made earlier this year. Except, the lemon curd had turned bad. The top part has turned brown and the consistency is more like lemon butter. Also, the lemon smell is totally gone. So I had to throw it away. Sniff sniff....

I didn't feel like going to the store just to get lemon curd, so I improvised. I cooked a couple of handfuls of frozen raspberries with some sugar. I didn't measure any of them, just sort of eye-balled it.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Golden Cola Syrup

I had this idea that I want to try making homemade soda. I don't drink soda on a regular basis but every now and then I have a craving so I'd have a glass of coke/pepsi or buy one of those fancier and "supposedly" healthier soda from fancy grocery stores.

So I borrowed The Artisan Soda Workshop and Homemade Soda from the library. Flipping through both cookbooks, I opted to try the Golden Cola Syrup from Homemade Soda.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Open-Faced Designer Apple Pie

Man, I have been slacking lately! Has it really been over a month since my latest post?

I am having a writer's block. I have several draft posts pending. They are populated with the photos. All I need is the words. But that's the problem. The words. I don't know what to write and don't feel like writing. Today I saw a post on The Kitchn on a new cookbook, Plum. The few pictures there look so yummy and makes me want to eat and take pictures and heck, I remember I haven't blogged for a while (do you follow the train of thought there? :)). So here is a new post - sort of.

I made this yummy pie back in February (!) for a potluck at a friend's house. The recipe is from The Pie & Pastry Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum. I bake a lot from Rose's recipes. Her books are my go-to recipe. Not because they are easy. In fact, Rose's recipes usually requires extra step, more time, and more dishes - sometime of them produce a lot of dishes. I go to Rose because her recipes are stellar in taste and very detailed in instruction.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Walnut Bread

This bread is my new love. I have been making it for several weeks now. Another winner from Jim Lahey's My Bread book. This is called Walnut Bread but it actually has raisins as well.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Chocolate Genoise

Every now and then I crave chocolate cake. A couple of months ago when that happened, I made Devil's Food Cake with Midnight Ganache from Rose's Heavenly Cakes. I made them in cupcake format and they weren't very pretty so I didn't bother to take pictures and blog about it. I made too much Midnight Ganache so I froze the leftover, knowing they will come in handy at some point.

Monday, March 4, 2013

ABC: No-Knead Cherry Pecan Bread

I can't believe it's been a month since the Boston Cream Pie and is now time to bake again for ABC. I do love this monthly schedule though. And Hanaa, I love the mix between dessert/sweets and breads.

I was really looking forward to this bread! I love love love No Knead Bread. have been making the basic version of the No Knead Bread for several weeks now. This one from King Arthur is a bit different in that it uses a combination of AP flour, rye flour, and WW flour. I wonder why it uses AP instead of bread flour (which is what the original No Knead recipe uses).

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Kofta b'siniyah

I am having a very busy week and my plan to post earlier this week did not happen. Still, I do want to post because my promise to myself this year is that I will post once a week. I made this dish weeks ago when I borrowed Jerusalem from the library. It is a beautiful cookbook by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi. The book has since been returned to the library and these meatballs are long gone but I still crave for it. I am thinking about purchasing the book. Though currently I am doing a low-fat-vegetarian-diet, but I do crave meat every now and then. If you like middle eastern dish, you should check this out. It has a range of recipes from appetizer, salad, soup, meat, and dessert.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Jamaican Ginger Beer

I have not made a lot of drinks in my life but I think it is safe to say that this one would rank at the top for the strangest one.

It is very good. And healthy. It is basically a ginger juice so it is a very concentrated flavor. I do not recommend if you don't like ginger. But if you do or kinda do, I suggest that you try it. You can also really dilute it with some water or seltzer so the ginger taste is a background flavor instead of it being a full-on concentrated ginger juice.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

No-Knead Bread

I have tried this bread before, back in 2009 when I first started baking. It turned out terrible! I can't remember the specifics now but it was bad enough to make me think that this is not the bread/method for me. I'm sure I did something wrong. Yes you may laugh here. This is supposed to be the easiest bread and I mess it up. I do have a tendency to mess up easy things.

But I didn't have enough knowledge to know what it was and at the time I was more concerned about finding a recipe that works for me. I want a good bread that I could make every week so we don't have to buy bread from the store anymore. A bread baking friend once told me that homemade bread is so good and so much better than store bought. I always wonder about this and secretly jealous. The bread that I made does not taste as good as the store-bought.I am talking about hearth type breads, bread that has only a handful of ingredients: flour, salt, yeast, water.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

ABC: Boston Cream Pie

For this week's ABC selection, I decided to make 1/3 recipe. The full size of this cake uses a 9 inch pan. I was too lazy to measure by volume. I do have 7 inch, 6 inch, and 4 inch cake pans. So I went with 6 inch. The size turned out to be perfect. The cake rose pretty high. However, if you look at the picture above, the cake sunk in the middle. When I took the cake out of the oven I was so sad. I didn't know why it sunk and it looked terrible. I only baked this for 20 minutes since this is a smaller size. I thought maybe I bake it a few minutes too long, but it should still not sink in the middle. Hubby cheerfully suggested that I should cut a hole in the middle and call it a bundt cake :). If you have seen My Big Fat Greek Wedding this comment should ring a bell.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Meyer Lemon-Ginger Marmalade

Marmalade success!!!

I am so so happy that this turned out. As you guys know, I tried to make Orange Marmalade last December. It turned out. Way too sweet and bitter at the same time. The sad marmalade ended up in trash.

My original plan was to make orange marmalade again with a different recipe, until I saw some Meyer Lemon at the grocery store. I have never tried Meyer lemon before so this was a good opportunity to try.

Monday, January 21, 2013


Another winner from Jam It, Pickle it, Cure It book by Karen Solomon. I borrowed this book from the library last month and made the Lemon Curd. I have bought a copy of it and marked off all the recipes I want to make from it.

Gravlak is a Nordic dish made of raw salmon, cured in salt, sugar, and dill. I have never heard of this before. The only form of cured salmon I know is smoked salmon. I love smoked salmon but it is a bit pricey and often too salty, so it is not something I get to enjoy often.

Gravlak is not exactly the same as smoked salmon. But you do get the same salty salmon taste and similar texture. It is cheaper and less salty so is a winner in my book.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


I have been making Ciabatta from Peter Reinhart's Artisan Bread Every Day several times now. The recipe makes 2 large loaves of ciabatta but I've been halving it and making 1 loaf at a time. It is super good and pretty easy. I think it's a much simpler method than the Ciabatta in his Bread Baker's Appretince book. This version does not require poolish and everything can be done in one bowl, no mixer required. I don't own Peter's BBA book but I am curious how the 2 ciabatta compare, tastewise. So one of these days I will try the BBA recipe and blog about it. But for now, let me show you how this one from Artisan Bread Every Day is.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013


I seem to be on a roll of making snacks lately. First there was the orange marmalade, then lemon curd, next hummus, and now granola.

I have never made granola before. Now that I have, I wondered why it took me so long to make this. It is so easy and good. It took 15 minutes to put together and 1/2 hour to bake.

I used a recipe that I found on The Kitchn. If you've never visited the site, you should. It has all kinds of recipes and tips and tricks that are interesting and helpful.