Category Archives: Kitchen

Garlic Butter Prawns on Toast

I woke up at noon wondering “Is it term break yet?” There were no lectures and I spent the day being a sloth. My notes for the presentation slides for Thursday are still notes in the notebook and the most productive I’ve been today was finishing 3 episodes of K-drama; Pasta.

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This was lunch and made after being brainwashed with dozens of aglio olio featured on the K-drama, Pasta, which is obviously, about pasta. And love. Lots of love. Wish I could have that many pretty boys slaving in my kitchen dishing out gourmet dishes (haha!). I didn’t have any spaghetti at hand so I had them with toast. Unsalted butter was used but the taste was lovely nonetheless without any addition of salt.

A rough idea of the recipe (I didn’t take any exact measurements and referred to no recipe in particular).

Garlic Butter Prawns on Toast

  • Half a bulb of garlic [essential to my speedy recovery from this cold and tummy ailment I’m having]
  • Approx. one tablespoon butter
  • A handful of peeled, frozen king prawns – defrosted.
  • 2 slices of soy and linseed bread (anything goes, choose what you like. The garlic butter prawns can be paired with pasta or rice.)

Peel and mince garlic. Melt butter in pan, throw garlic in, sautee, throw prawns in, put bread into toaster, turn prawns on the other side, turn off the hob. Let it cook in the remaining heat. This ensures the prawns don’t get overcooked and the butter doesn’t get burnt. When toast pops out, dish the garlic butter onto plate, or you can eat them straight out of the pan ^_^

I sometimes make garlic butter prawns with chilli + ginger and have them with rice. Spicy foods are best with heavier starch to balance it out. You can turn it oriental by substituting butter with vegetable oil and adding a little bit of soy sauce at the end, or have it the Italian way by using olive oil, garlic, and optional seafood to go with regular spaghetti or angel hair pasta.

I remember a franchise back in Malaysia that does aglio oglio with the fiery passion of sambal. At least sambal wasn’t used in the dish, but it was loaded with either chilli powder/chilli oil or a combination of chilli powder and a truckload of tabasco and lots of mixed seafood. I guess wherever a dish is introduced to a new place, it will be a matter of time before the recipe is adjusted to the local taste, just how Malaysian food outlets in the UK are less intense compared to their original counterparts.

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Productivity of the Non-academic Kind

Today I took a stroll in the sun, did my groceries, renewed my library book loan, cooked lunch, and baked brownies.

Revision = nil.

A little writing assignment (non-academic related, this is an external project) = nil.

Giving room for a little positivity, perhaps the 24-hour break would do some good.

The recipe for the brownie is adapated from Chasing Delicious, instead of 4oz (approximately 113g) of dark chocolate I used 200g (a whole bar) of Sainsbury’s dark chocolate for cooking and decorating and tapped whatever remnants inside my package of Green and Black’s cocoa into a bowl of decadent chocolate concoction which is then poured into a cake tin and sprinkled with leftover chopped nuts. Mmmmmnnmmm. . . .

This was while it was still warm out of the oven. Shiny, gooey, chocolate indulgence. Mmmmnmmhhh.

Truffle in Progress

There was chocolate on my hands, all over the spoon, a little stain on the door knob, parts of the kitchen, the room smells of chocolate. Typing this while taking a break from making truffles. To complete may take a while, I’m hoping to be done by midnight.

Bashed ginger snaps using my 895-paged engineering book and a hard-covered second hand Dickens I’m halfway through reading. The bits are then used to coat the little spheres of chocolate decadence. I had one and I’m happy to say the result was good despite failing to adhere to parts of the recipe.

So, tonight I’m truffle-ing!

Reference : Jamie Oliver’s Amazing DIY Chocolate Truffles.

The Cracked-Egg Tiramisu

I had guests for tea today and treated them to my home-made Tiramisu.

The making of the Tiramisu was not planned and the guests coming over coincided with the Italian dessert ready to serve. What happened was yesterday, I dropped my groceries and broke my eggs on my way home from Sainsbury’s. While trying to scavenge what was left within the cracked eggs, I somehow managed to separate the yolks from the white. Only one egg I managed to recover about 80% of the white and I used that to make chocolate meringue cookies. I couldn’t resist eating them right away after I took them out of the oven.

The original recipe called for five egg yolks. I only had three, but proceeded anyway. Turns out I had barely enough to cover 3/4 of the top layer of coffee-soaked sponge fingers so I improvised by using whipped double cream to imitate a full coverage.

The result was not bad at all. My guests and I managed to finish half the tray and the remaining is sitting in the fridge.

Maybe not for long. 😉

The Cracked-Egg Tiramisu

Ingredients:

3 egg yolks

250g Mascarpone cheese (I used Sainsbury’s)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

I medium sized double cream, whipped (keep it in the refrigerator until needed. I used Elmlea. Sainsbury’s work just as fine, but Elmlea lasts longer)

2 packets sponge fingers (I used Fingerellas, am going to try using Saviovardi biscuits next time)

3/4 cup of really strong coffee (I put three or four tablespoons of instant coffee into 3/4 cup of hot water)

Put half a pot of hot water to boil while you whisk the egg yolks with sugar in a pyrex or a heatproof bowl. When the water has boil, place the bowl containing the egg yolks and sugar mixture over it and continue whisking it for a good ten minutes. Don’t stop or your mixture will get clumpy. Then your Tiramisu won’t have a smooth texture.

Take it off the heat and mix in the Mascarpone. Let it cool. While waiting, place your sponge fingers into a shallow dish or tray and pour coffee all over it.

When the Mascarpone, egg and sugar concoction has cooled, FOLD in the whipped double cream. The little air bubbles in the whipped double cream gives the Tiramisu a little bit of body. Otherwise it will turn out like a custard mixture.

Layer the bottom of a deep tray/container/trifle bowl with the coffee-soaked sponge fingers and pour half the Mascarpone-egg-sugar-cream mixture on top of it and repeat, finishing with the Mascarpone-egg-sugar-cream mixture. Cover with foil or wrapping film and refrigerate overnight, or at least six hours until firm.

Good luck if you’re trying, and enjoy! 😉

Maca-wrongs!

Two weeks or so before Aidilfitri I tried making macaroons in an attempt to do a kuih raya, western version. The end result tasted like mini chocolate cake, sans the look of  a macaroon. Here’s where I got it wrong.

I should have beaten the egg whites a little longer.. I stopped when it formed peaks but was still sliding around my bowl when the almond meal was folded in.

I should have used a gel/powder colouring instead of the normal liquid ones. I put in a few drops of red, hoping to make pink coloured macaroons. This batch turned out white.

Was tempted to tip the remaining cocoa powder in the can into the bowl, but figured this should be enough.

Was lazy to get my piping bag (and to wash it later), so used a spoon to place the batter onto the baking sheets.

The oven at my current place has a mind of its own. Just because you turn the knob perfectly to 150 degrees Celcius doesn’t mean the temperature is. Burnt the first batch by about three minutes because I was on Facebook chat. Second batch turned out “perfect”, the third was under-baked.

Overall, the taste did come out nicely and would have been sinful if I had made the chocolate ganache filling. Didn’t take them out for Aidilfitri however, so I ate them myself.

Om nom nom nom.

Blissful secret of the amateur chef. 😉