Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Learn to Bake Cakes with Icing

Beef in Black Bean Sauce

For Marinating the beef :

1/2 Kg steak
1/2 tsp sugar
2 tsp soy sauce

Ingredients :

2 tsp vinegar
1 1/2 tsp cornflour
2 bell peppers thinly sliced
2 green chillies thinly sliced
1 small onion
1 tablespoon fermented black beans
1/2 tsp black pepper powder
6 cloves garlic
4 tablespoons oil for stir-frying
1/2 cup water


Cut the beef into thin long slices. Add the marinade ingredients and marinate the beef for 25 to 30 minutes.

While the beef is marinating, prepare the vegetables. Remove the stems and seeds from the bell peppers and chop. Peel the onion and chop.

Use a cleaver or knife to chop the black beans into tiny pieces or just put it in the chopper. Finely chop the garlic and ginger. Mix the chopped garlic with the black beans.

Heat the wok over high heat. Add 2 tablespoons oil. When the oil is hot, add the beef. Brown briefly, then stir-fry until it changes color and is about 80 percent cooked remove the beef from the wok.

In the same oil, add the ginger, chillies, garlic and black bean mixture. Stir-fry . Add the onion. Stir-fry for about 3 minutes, then add the green pepper. Stir-fry for another minute, then add the remaining pepper.

Pour in the water, let it boil. Add the beef back into the pan, add the vinegar. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for a few more minutes. Taste and season with salt, pepper or soy sauce if desired. Serve hot on a bed of noodles or fried rice.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Baked Chicken with Veggies

1 Kg Chicken
1 full pod of garlic
2' pc of ginger
3 green chillies
1/2 tsp black pepper powder
2 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tsp dark soya sauce
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 1/2 tsp Rosemary
Mixed vegies like 1 floret Brocolli, 2 Carrots, 2 Capsicums (choicest vegetables u prefer)- cut them into long thick strips.

Trim the excess fat from the chicken. Wash it and pat dry. Leave it aside in a strainer to strain the water.

In a chopper finely chop the ginger, garlic & green chillies.

In a big bowl add black pepper powder, oyster sauce, soya sauce, rosemary & sugar. Add to this the chopped mixture. Add the sesame oil.

Now rub this marinade to the whole chicken. Make sure to rub it below the skin as well inside. Leave it to marinate for 3-4 hours.

In a baking tray bake the chicken for 40 minutes on 200 deg C. Make sure you flip the chicken on the tray every 10 minutes. Now brown the top for 5 minutes on high flame then turn it again and brown the other side. Keep basting the chicken with the drippings whenever you turn the chicken (this will keep the chicken moist). Once chicken is baked. Remove it from the baking tray.

In the same baking tray with the marinade & drippings add the vegetables and bake it for 10 minutes till the vegetable are nicely coated with the marinade & browned.

Serve the baked chicken with vegies & some warm soup and garlic bread.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Caramel Walnut Upside-Down Banana Cake

Best way to consume the over ripe bananas, bake a banana cake. The cake by itself is soft & yummy but I always want something different so I gave it a little topping with caramel walnut. The caramelized walnuts taste delicious and so does the caramel which is a little hard and chewy. Do give a try, you will love it. I couldn't wait to click pictures as the cake looked absolutely Yummilicious. Now can't wait till I pop in a piece.

Ingredients :
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
100 gms unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
3 large ripe bananas (mashed)
3 tablespoons Milk
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

75 gms unsalted butter
1 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp Honey
1 cup walnut pieces

Grease a 5x5x3 inch square cake pan. Bring butter, sugar, and honey to boil in medium saucepan, stirring constantly until butter melts. Boil it for 1 minute. Stir in nuts. Pour the topping in the greased cake pan. Cool it completely.

Preheat oven to 200°C. Sift dry ingredients in a bowl. Using the beater, beat butter and both sugars in large bowl until its creamy. Beat in eggs 1 at a time, then mashed bananas, milk and vanilla. Now add the dry ingredients. Pour the batter in the greased pan with the topping.

Bake cake for 1 hour or until the skewer inserted into center comes out clean. Now Cool it for 10 minutes. Turn the cake upside down on a serving tray or plate. Cool it for 10 minutes for the topping to set. If you like the caramel hard & chewy you can serve it plain. If you like it gooey & chewy then just warm up the slice for few seconds in the microwave and serve it.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Flavours of Morocco -Couscous with Vegetables

1 couscous box
2 Onions
3 Carrots
1 Potato
2 Turnips
1 piece of pumpkin / butternut squash
½ Cup of chopped Parsley
½ Cup of chopped Coriander
2 Tbsp of minced Garlic
1 can of chickpeas
½ Tsp Cumin
½ Tsp red chilli powder
¼ Tsp turmeric
1 ½ Tsp Salt (to taste)
½ Tsp Pepper (to taste)
3 Tbsp of Oil
2 Tbsp of tomato paste
3 Vegetable stock cubes
6 Cups of Water

1- Peel and slice all the vegetables in large pieces.
2- On medium heat, add the oil and put the onions in the cooking pan, stir the onions for a couple of minutes then add the garlic, parsley and coriander.
3- Add to the onions half the amount of paprika, cumin, turmeric, salt.
4- Add the vegetable cubes, add water and close the lid of the pan.
5- When the wateris boiling, add the potato pieces.

Note: Cook the harder vegetables first then when they are half cooked add the softer vegetables

5- After 10 minutes, add the carrots.
6- After 15 minutes, add the turnips.
7- After 10 minutes, add the butternut squash.
8- Add the rest of the spices and the tomato paste.
9- After 10 minutes, add chickpeas.

Steps to make the Couscous:

3 cups of Couscous
3 cups of water (same cup as you measured the couscous)
1/4 tsp of salt.

Boil the water, add salt. Put off the flame. Now add the couscous to the boiling water & close the lid. leave it closed for 5-6 minutes. Add 1 tbsp of butter & fluff up the couscous with a fork.

Serve the couscous on a plate then top it up with some veggies and sauce & enjoy.