Archive for the ‘Recipes and Cooking / Baking Tips’ Category

Cooking with Masterchef Christophe Grilo

The Partner and I were invited to a French culinary masterclass conducted by Masterchef Christophe Grilo at Nourish Studios and hosted by Dettol.

Masterchef Christophe Grilo

Bonjour Masterchef Christophe Grilo. He also runs his own business Bakery Artisan Original.

Like us I’m sure you’re wondering “huh, cooking with Dettol?” No, Dettol is not moving into the grocery business or opening restaurants. Instead, Dettol wants to highlight the importance of kitchen hygiene and how their products can help to keep your kitchen clean. I’ve never really viewed Dettol as being particularly important in the kitchen arena, because to me, Dettol is about disinfecting toilets or soaps for scrubbing bodies. It was good to attend this event to find out what other products Dettol has up their sleeves.

Dettol Products

All your favourite Dettol products.

Sometimes when we prepare meals we can have unwanted visitors that take days to get over. No, I’m not talking about uninvited relatives, I’m talking about E.coli, salmonella and other bacteria. Every year millions of people around the world poison themselves unnecessarily due to poor kitchen hygiene.

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The Bamix MagicWand handheld blender–The perfect gift for Christmas!

I have a confession to make. I am a kitchen gadget fanatic. People like to go to the phone shops to ogle the latest phone designs but for me, I derive pleasure window shopping at the kitchen section of Tangs and Robinsons. I just can’t help it when the chefs on TV have such lovely kitchens to work in and all sorts of droolsome kitchen equipment to play with.

I’ve wanted my very own hand blender for a few years now. Imagine the number of soups and smoothies you can make with the hand blender!  I already have an all-purpose food processor, and it seems a waste of money to want to get a hand blender. But the thing is, the food processor is no good for when you just want to process a small amount of food. It’s so much more convenient to shove the hand blender into a glass or jar of nuts, seeds, vegetables etc and the only thing you need to wash is the head of the hand blender, and not the entire food processor contraption.

Also, I know I will never pour hot soup into my food processor’s plastic container. If you ever buy a hand blender, the most important thing is to get one that is made of metal. I just can’t imagine immersing a plastic one into boiling hot soup! Even though they say it’s safe, I rather not.

So it was great when Mayer, the distributor of Bamix in Singapore contacted me to ask me if I wanted to try out the Bamix MagicWand. This versatile first-class Swiss hand blender comes fitted with multi-purpose blades for jobs such as mincing, chopping, whisking, mixing and pureeing at the flick of a switch. Different speed settings allow for whisking and beating at varying strengths to achieve creamy salad dressings, sauces, soups, baby food, soufflés, milkshakes, desserts and even mashed potatoes.

This Bamix is a really nifty gadget to have, and it looks so stylish too! Ok the picture here is the top of the range Bamix SwissLine that costs $499, but you can simply get the basic range Bamix MagicWand for only $299. I think red is such a striking colour, and perfect for Christmas don’t you think? When I have my own dream kitchen, I will invite friends over for dinners often, and this will surely be one of my showcase pieces!

Anyway… I put the Bamix MagicWand to the test and whipped up an appetiser (soup), mains and dessert with it. Scroll down to see the recipes, pictures as well as videos!

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Lamb Shank in Kiwifruit Recipe

Lamb Shank marinated in kiwifruit and sage

We have been eating very often in the past few days so the Partner decided to cook a Sunday Roast for a change. Lamb Shank marinated in kiwifruit and sage, with parsnip, kumara, potato, carrot and onion as accompaniments (left to right). For us Asians, this may look like an immensely complicated dish, but it is actually fairly straightforward (for an expert like the Partner according to him) as most of the cooking is done in the oven. Really, the most difficult task is to make sure the meat doesn’t burn. Cooking a roast does not require tedious dicing like you would have to for Asian stir-fries and there is no slaving away over the hot wok to prepare this meal.

Sunday Roasts are common for the British and Australians/New Zealanders, but what makes this more Kiwi is that it’s a Roast Lamb. Also, it is less common to find sweet potatoes (aka Kumara) in a British Sunday roast. Kumara is common in New Zealand because of the Maoris. BUT, most importantly, a key difference for this Sunday Roast that the Partner cooked is that the lamb was marinated in Kiwifruit! See below for recipe. Smile 

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Kiwifruit Recipes

You may be familiar with Apple Pie, Banana Muffin and Cherry Tart, but did you know that ‪#‎Kiwifruits‬ are also good for making desserts? Check out this Chocolate and Kiwifruit muffin recipe courtesy of www.zespri.com.

Choc O’ Gold Muffins


Serves: 10

Ingredients

  • ½ cup chocolate chips
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 cups (250 g) self raising flour
  • 75 g (3 oz) butter or margarine
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup (125 ml) milk
  • 2 large ZESPRI® GOLD Kiwifruit
Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°C)
2. Lightly grease 10 muffin cups
3. Place the chocolate chips, sugar and sifted four into a bowl
4. Melt the butter or margarine and combine with the egg and milk
5. Peel the ZESPRI® GOLD Kiwifruit
6. Cut in 1 cm (1/2 in.) dice. Reserve a little fruit for the top of the muffins
7. Add the liquid ingredients and diced fruit to the dry ingredients and combine quickly, until just moistened
8. Spoon into the muffin cups and dot with the reserved fruit
9. Bake for about 20 minutes

Preparation Time

15 minutes

Cooking Time

20 minutes

Many more kiwifruit recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner available at www.zespri.com!

Cook for Family Initiative

As part of the Cook for the Family Initiative started by Daniel of DanielFoodDiary, I managed to roll up my sleeves to cook for the Partner last weekend. He’s normally the one who takes care of all the hot kitchen items, meaning the main meals, while I am in charge of the cold kitchen, aka desserts. Which really means that we have our dinner without dessert most of the time…

He was ill last week, which meant that I couldn’t procrastinate anymore. I may be quite confident when it comes to baking, because I’ve gone to baking school, but I get all nervous and irritable when it involves vegetables and meat. In fact, it’s a wonder why this is the case if you go by the number of cooking shows I watch!

I think this #CookforFamily Initiative is a great idea, and stemmed from the worry that we food bloggers might just be spending too much time dining and wining outside while neglecting to spend time eating with our family. This is our way to show our family members that we still care, via action and not just words.

This is what I cooked for the Partner. It’s definitely no Kylie Kwong or Jamie Oliver. But it was edible, healthy (relatively) and affordable. Better still, it’s kind of made me want to cook again.

Cook for Family - Fried egg with lightly fried vegetables

Tada! Fried egg with diced cauliflower, baby corn, onions and loads of garlic in pork stock.

I don’t even think I need to post a recipe, cuz my job was basically chopping up all the ingredients, and making sure they didn’t burn while frying them. The pork stock was made by the Partner a while back and frozen in little packets for such a purpose.

Enjoy the photos below. I really salute bloggers who are able to cook, plate beautifully and take great photos. I have no patience for taking good photos when I’m cooking as it just takes took long and I don’t have a nice table. I am told by the seasoned cook bloggers that it’s hard when you first start out but becomes a cinch after a while. Okay I’ll try again another time, perhaps when I get the plating right!

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