Thursday, September 24, 2015

Lovely Moist Banana Cake Recipe

After trying a few types of Banana Bread/Cake recipe and from all the recipes we've blogged, this is so far the best one currently.

It's slight, fluffy, moist, bounce back when you gently press it. This is extremely close to childhood banana cake I've been searching for. However, do feel that the banana selected might have cause the slight difference.

250g Mashed Ripe Banana
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
130g Cake Flour
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon Salt
90g Sugar
3 Eggs
40ml Vegetable Oil

Step By Step
  1. Sift Cake Flour, Baking Powder and Salt. Set aside.
  2. In a bowl, add in Mashed Banana and Baking Powder. Stir well and set aside for 45 minutes.
  3. Preheat Oven at 180°C.
  4. Beat Eggs and Sugar until light and fluffy, close to ribbon stage.
  5. Fold in 1/6 of Flour mixture. Repeat.
  6. Fold in Banana mixture.
  7. Lastly, slowly add in Vegetable Oil while folding.
  8. Pour into the lined baking loaf pan.
  9. Bake for 35mins or until when insert the cake tester it comes out clean.
  10. Let it fully cool on a wire rack before slicing it up & storing into air tight container gor storage.

Some Extra Tips Below:
- What Banana to choose? Thin Skin Type. Leave it to ripe fully or until slightly black.
- It's crucial to leave the Mashed Banana & Baking Soda to work it's magic. This is a tip from a few bakers.
- Steps can be changed to mix all these together (sifted Cake Flour, sifted Baking Powder, Salt, Eggs, Sugar, Vegetable Oil) at least for 10mins or until fluffy before folding in the Banana Mix.

Click here for our blog page Baking Classes for more recipes. Hope you will be inspired~

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Look See Eat's Guide to Switzerland: A weekend in Geneva!

Glorious Geneva. Despite its (relatively) miniscule size, it's one of the most well-known cities in Europe - and possibly the most famous one in Switzerland. How miniscule? It's got a population of just 197,000 - contrast that with the 7 million of UK and 3½ million of Berlin!

Geneva's the headquarters of a host of International Organisations and a plethora of private banks, so chances are you're visiting the city for work, or business, rather than for leisure. If you are, have got the weekend off and are wondering what to see and do, we've totally got you covered. Presenting the Look See Eat Guide to a Weekend in Geneva!

Start off the morning with a coffee and a croissant or a pain au chocolat, and take a stroll around the lac Léman. The city's most iconic landmark is the Jet d'Eau: A huge jet shooting water over 450 feet in the air. The current jet was installed in 1951 and is turned on from sunrise to sunset, except when the wind's too strong.

Geneva Jet d'Eau
Jet d'Eau from the Right Bank (West of the Lake)

If the weather's warm enough, consider buying a gelato cone from one of the many shops on the lake banks and meander through the Jardin Anglais (English Garden) to the L'horloge Fleurie (Flower clock). This 5m-diameter clock was created in 1955 as a "symbol of the city's watchmakers and dedication to nature."

Geneva Jardin Anglais
One of the many sculptures in the Jardin Anglais

Geneva L'horloge Fleurie
L'horloge Fleurie (the Flower Clock)

The sightseeing continues with a detour to the Vieille Ville (Geneva Old Town) - a delightful maze of cobblestone'd paths perfect for wandering, people watching and admiring Swiss architecture. Turn off your phones, put away your maps, and just explore for a while.

Geneva Vielle Ville Old Town
Vieille Ville (Geneva Old Town)

Depending on how long you wandered, you might have time to squeeze in some shopping (window or otherwise) on Rue de Rive / Rue du Marche - Geneva's main shopping boulevard - before lunch. At the very least stop by Auer Chocolatier and pick up a box of their divine Amandes Princesses chocolate-coated almonds.

Geneva Shopping Street

Time now to grab some lunch! Geneva is an expensive city. The second most expensive in the world, in fact (according to UBS), so eating out can be rather alarming to the wallet. Food's generally decent, though, so pick a cafe or restaurant around the area that tickles your fancy.

If you'd like some recommendations, you probably can't go wrong with Café du Centre or Brasserie Lipp. Both are within walking distance.

Geneva Café du Centre Brasserie Lipp
Jamon Iberico at Brasserie Lipp, Lobster Risotto at Café du Centre

With stomachs replenished, let's put our free Geneva public transport cards to use by hopping on an electric tram or bus. Destination: The Patek Philippe Museum (CHF 10 entrance fee), which is a breathtaking homage to hundreds of years of Swiss watch-making tradition. Keep an eye on the clock: We need to wrap up our horology gawking by around 3pm.

Geneva Patek Philippe Museum
Patek Philippe Museum. Sorry no photos allowed inside!

Our final destination of the day is a 30-40 minute tram ride away: The United Nations Office at Geneva. Technically this isn't a tourist attraction per se; UNOG is an actual office of the UN, with all sorts of United Nations activities going on. They do provide guided tours for CHF 12, which are amazing as you'll get to walk around the premises admiring the various meeting halls, with your guide giving expert commentary. Generally the last tour of the day departs at 4pm, but do check the website for more up to date information.

United Nations Office at Geneva
Not quite the UN HQ, but good enough for a visit!

United Nations Office at Geneva
Touring the many conference halls in the premises

By the time you're done with the tour pretty much everything else will be closed (or closing soon), so there's not much else to do than to head back to the city to have some dinner. Some reasonably-priced options: Chez Ma Cousine (Roast chicken with gravy; pretty good, if a tad salty) or The Hamburger Foundation (Burgers and young, attractive, english-speaking waiters). Or if you're hankering for something more 'Swiss,' the fondue and raclette at Auberge de Savièse are solid choices that won't break the bank.

Geneva The Hamburger Foundation Auberge de Savièse
Meat platter at Auberge de Savièse, Burger at The Hamburger Foundation

It's back to the hotel for some rest and relaxation after a long day out on your feet. Get an early rest as tomorrow you'll need to be up and early: We're heading out of the city and across the border to France to visit Chamonix and the majestic Mont Blanc mountain - the highest peak in the European Alps. Stay tuned for the full post coming up soon, but in the meantime if you've got any questions do feel free to ask in the comments below!

Geneva Chamonix Mont Blanc
Coming Soon: Chamonix and the Mont Blanc mountains!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Customize your own Burgers at (Fatboy's) The Burger Bar!

Fatboy's is known to serve up one of the better burgers in town. The darling and I haven't quite gotten round to trying it, but we did chance upon their casual / fast food concept eatery The Burger Bar in Marina Square instead. The joint looked pretty inviting, and we were hungry, so in we went to get our chow on!

The Burger Bar

Have I ever mentioned that I'm a sucker for iPad ordering systems? Not sure if the manpower savings justifies the cost, though. iPads aren't cheap!

The Burger Bar's concept is to leave the combination of ingredients entirely up to you. You can choose from pork, beef, or chicken patties; four different kinds of cheese (cheddar, provologne, swiss for example); and get this - eleven different sauces (ranging from wasabi mayo to peanut butter).

The Burger Bar iPad Ordering

Naturally, there are also multiple combo add-ons available: We chose a root beer and the Bacon Cheese Fries (decently cooked and lathered generously with cheese sauce).

The Burger Bar Bacon Cheese Fries

If you're not in the mood to consider the hundred different choice permutations, just do what I did and order from one of their pre-arranged burgers. The Bacon Cheeseburger arrives pretty darn good. I'm a big fan of the heft in the bun (that means more capacity to soak up various juices before breaking down into a mush), and the flavour of the cheese on the beef patty.

What I don't like is the shredded lettuce. I'll take the crisp crunch of a whole lettuce leaf or two over limp shredded lettuce any day!

The Burger Bar Bacon Cheeseburger

The darling declares #YOLO and orders a custom pork patty with lettuce, tomato and peanut butter sauce. The resulting Peanut Butter Pork Burger turns out pretty good too! Patty was well seasoned and juicy. Definitely a re-order.

The Burger Bar Peanut Butter Pork Burger

The bill came up to $25 nett for two people, which is really reasonable in our opinion. Fatboy's has two Burger Bar concepts in Singapore - Far East Plaza and Marina Link mall. Non-halal.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Ice Jelly Dessert (includes steps and different varieties ideas)

On a hot day this would be a bowl of dessert that will come to my mind. Simple refreshing, sweet and most importantly cold.

During my childhood, my family always chill off by heading out to the food court to have desserts. This is one of the popular choice on the menu.

Base Cookie Dough Ingredients:
1 pack of Instant Ice Jelly Powder
4-5 Ice Cubes / Crushed Ice
2 tablespoons Lime Juice
1 tablespoon Sugar Syrup / Honey

Step By Step
  1. Prepare the Ice Jelly by follow packaging instructions. Normally one pack can serve up to 4 bowls or more.
  2. Scoop Ice Jelly into a bowl, add Ice Cubes / Crushed Ice, Lime Juice and Sugar Syrup / Honey.
  3. Top it off with any fruits you love. Below are some ideas of ours.

Some Extra Tips Below:
- Adjust the sugar level to your liking.
- Crush ice is a better choice.

Below is my creations hopefully it'll inspire you. You may split the base cookie dough is 2 parts and half the portion as per suggested below for more varieties. Hope you all will love this recipe.

Lychee Ice Jelly Dessert
6 pieces Lychee
2 tablespoons Nata de Coco
2 tablespoons Rainbow Tadpole

Click here for our blog page Dessert and Drinks Recipes for more ideas. Hope you will be inspired~

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Pork and Gulden at the Pigs & Wolf, Pavilion KL

With a restaurant named Pigs and Wolf, you'd probably have an inkling of what sort of food's served up: Pork, pork, and more pork.

The restaurant's located on the 7th floor of the Pavilion KL shopping mall, on the opposite end from Tokyo Street, sharing a little cubby with a half dozen other new(ish) eateries.

Pigs & Wolf Pavilion KL

Decor is decent but functional: You wouldn't bring a companion here for an anniversary celebration. But for a gathering of friends, family, or colleagues after work it's perfect. The darling and I are here on a Sunday afternoon, so what better to wake us up than a couple of Lattes? (RM 9 each)

Pigs & Wolf Pavilion KL Latte

We're tempted by the breakfast platters that Pigs & Wolf serves til late on weekends, but we decide instead on more 'lunch-ey' items: Starting with The Wolf's Favorite (RM 31). What this is, of course, is a spaghetti carbonara with a heaping of bacon. The pasta's nicely al-dente, the cream has a nice consistency and is pretty well flavored. I personally prefer my bacon chewy rather than crispy, but that's just nitpicking in the grand scheme of bacon-laden things.

Pigs & Wolf Pavilion KL Bacon Carbonara

Next up: the Mighty Piggy Burger (RM 30). A comment, first, about that salad in the background. It's laden with about ten times as much vinaigrette as is necessary and is therefore too sour to the point of being inedible. The burger's pretty good, though. Juicy, flavorful, substantial. Fries are decently crispy too.

Pigs & Wolf Pavilion KL Pork Burger

So where does the wolf in the name come into the picture? If you were expecting some gulden dishes you'd be disappointed - no wolf meat here (yes, wolf meat is called gulden, and yes, I had to look it up for this blog post).

With a final bill of close to RM45/person after service and taxes it isn't exactly cheap. But then again, I suppose that's pretty par for the course for KL eateries these days. Pigs & Wolf opens 7 days a week; Reservations probably aren't necessary but you can dial +603 2110 4438 to make sure. Non-halal.

At time of writing, 1.00 SGD = 3.03 MYR.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Marble Butter Cake Recipe

One of my earliest, most vivid childhood memories was sitting at home in the evenings, waiting eagerly for the roti man to pass by; his motorcycle laden with bread, pastry, cakes and other delightful goodies. My favorite of them all - the buttery goodness of a slice of marble butter cake.

The roti man is a relic of the past, though, so I'm always experimenting with baking my own cake. Will today's recipe be the one to let me relive my childhood memories? Let's find out!

Recipe for 8" x 8" Square Size Baking Pan

Mixture A Ingredients
250g Plain Flour
6g Baking Powder

Sift Flour and Baking Powder. Set aside.

Mixture B Ingredients
350g Butter (maximum reduction to 300g)

Beat Butter till pale and fluffy. Set aside.

Mixture C Ingredients (can be replaced with Nutella)
70g Chocolate
70g Thickened Cream
1 tablespoon Cocoa Powder

Heat up Thickened Cream till slightly bubbling, pour in Chocolate and Cocoa. Stir until smoothly combine. Set aside.

Mixture D Ingredients
4 Eggs
200g Sugar

Whisk Egg and Sugar till white and smooth ribbon stage.

Preheat oven to 165°C. Line the bottom of the baking tray and grease the sides.

Add in Mixture B in small batches into Mixture D in low speed. Followed by adding in sifted flour and fold until well combined.

Separate the batter into 2 portions. Fold in Mixture C until well combined.

Chocolate Butter Cake Batter

Butter Cake Batter

Alternate drop blobs of Butter Cake Batter and Chocolate Butter Cake Batter into the baking pan.

Slightly tap the tray of the table to level out the batter. Use a angled spatula and swirl to create the marble effect. Bake in the oven for 40 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

I totally love this recipe. It might not quite reverse the clock to twenty years ago, but it's still superb: Moist, fragrant, buttery goodness with just the right hint of chocolate. Perfect to enjoy with a cup of coffee or tea for breakfast or tea.

Try it out and do leave a comment to let me know if you enjoyed it as much as I did!

Click here for our blog page Baking Classes for more recipes. Hope you will be inspired~