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Showing posts from May, 2005

There's no easy way out?

I have had a recipe for easy cinnamon buns for the longest time already. Today I decided to put it to the test. I made a few adjustments like halving the recipe, not letting the recipe rest overnight (i.e. easy as in can be prepped in advance and baked the next day), using milk instead of water, a whole egg instead of just half (but compensated with less milk). The rolls were not as rockhard as they look. Seriously. But the gooey, sugary, glaze topping I had imagined as I inverted the rolls onto a plate, did not realise! Instead, the bottoms were drought-dry. Sigh, I had to savage the rolls by melting down more butter and sugar and brushing the mixture onto each roll while they were still warm. The crunchy coarse sugar filling in the roll was an excellent touch to add a bit of bite. But this experience has encouraged me even more, to make the yeasted version next time. For the amount of mess created, let's just say for good cinnamon buns, there is really no easy way out.

Dinner at One-Ninety

J and I spent another anniversary, our 10th month together now, eating out at Four Seasons Hotel's One-Ninety restaurant.

Anyway, here's the food from that night.

From top left to right: bread basket with slab of butter and cheese dip, Seafood Combo with Tuna Tartare, Salmon Gravlax and Scallop Ceviche, Cepes Mushrooms Soup with Herbs.

From bottom left to right: Steamed Jumbo Asparagus with Creamy Seasonal Wild Mushrooms and Dry Vermouth, "Backenoff” Slow Baked in Claypot, Lamb Shank and Shoulder, Layered with Potato, Tomato, Vegetable and White Wine and Souffle of the Day (Mango).The atmosphere was casual but chic, elegant yet not stuffy. Wait staff was attentive and courteous. Food was great, but nothing really really outstanding. Perhaps worth a mention is the unconventional cheese dip that came along with our bread basket. It was as tasty as it looked and the top slightly burnt from a moment under the broil was an appetising sight to any cheese lover! We finished t…

Authentic Korean at last?

I have always enjoyed Korean food because I like spicy stuff and the cuisine is generally quite healthy. Granted my experiences have been limited to Korean stalls at food courts and one rather decent one in a mall, I have a pretty good idea what Korean food is about.

J & I walked past Gang Na Roo many times, on route to other restaurants. This restaurant is literally a hole-in-wall. But each time, there were a few patrons, some even looked Koreans! More importantly, the staff looked like their flight from Korea just landed and I am totally sold! I told myself I would have to go in soon.

Finally, yesterday was the day! We were slightly early as I was hungry and got there before seven o'clock. There was not a single soul inside the restaurant other than the service people hanging out at the back part of the restaurant. I started to feel hestitant but decided to just go for it.

Once inside, a waitress, who seemed to be the daughter of the owner/cook, served us Korean tea. As we look…

SHF #8 - Puckered up by Lemon & Honey Orange Bars

When I saw the theme, lemon and orange immediately came to mind. As such, I decided to use both of them to make a bar of some sort, so it would also be appropriate to bring for bible studies later to be shared.

Using a basic recipe found on the web, I adapted it to what will be posted below. I used a regular lemon but a rather seasonal orange, the honey orange from Thailand. This fruit is very sweet and fibrous so take care to strain your juice.

The result was rather nice. There was a sugar crust formed on top so that added a nice crunch. When you bite into the filling, there is a mysterious sort feeling because physically, the bars look very much like lemon bars by color, but taste wise, it is not as straightforward and one would start to wonder what else is in there. The biscuit crust was good; sweet and flakey. But I would prefer the ratio of lemon-orange layer to base, which turned out to be about 1:1, to increase to perhaps 2:1. But definitely a keeper recipe. Thanks to Alice from …

Tactless means Tartless

You see the apple tart? It is the rather delicious result of an amusing story. A couple nights ago, J and I went out for dinner with a few of his friends. Though we left the restaurant feeling stuffed, we reverted to J's house to have dessert, a really great apple pie baked by S's wife. When we got into the kitchen to split the gluttony, J's mom was just finishing up her dinner. We did our thing and went out, to the living room to chill. Little did we know that J's mom was also eyeing a piece of pie, which S's wife failed to offer her. I couldn't offer cuz it wasn't like it was my pie. Anyhow, J's dad mentioned it casually the following morning how his mom could only savour the cinnamon scent and not the pie. Since S wife's tactlessness left J's mom "tartless", I decided to make one to suck up. Based on this recipe, it was rather painless but here are some of my comments:1) The tart crust recipe was not easy to roll out so clever me pi…

Anniversary at Restaurant Ember

Restaurant Ember is a chic restaurant located in the equally chic and quaint boutique hotel - Hotel 1929. It is run by a husband (executive chef) and wife (marketing & front-end) team and received quite a fare bit of publicity after chef Sebastian Ng won the World Gourmet Summit Awards last year for "Meat & Livestock: Australia Rising Chef of the Year' title. I reckon the restaurant will be in the limelight again as Sebastian wins the same award again this year. Anyhow, J and I chose Ember to celebrate our 9th month anniversary dinner after reading various reviews that were not bad.

Looking through the full-length transparent glass panels, the retro 70s decor was in full view. The setting was cosy and not very intimate. But surprisingly, the noise level never got annoying.
For starters, I had the green house salad (not pictured), which had quite a tangy sesame-based dressing. Nothing too extraordinary but went well with the greens. J had the pan seared foie gras with ap…

Mother's Favourite

I can't help it; I should wait til tomorrow to post this, but I'm too excited after all that effort into making my first cake to dedicate to my mother for Mother's Day tomorrow. Still can't make out what it is? It's a Blackforest Cake, my mom's all-time fave :) What do you think? Not bad-looking for a first attempt, eh? Blah, it's 12 more hours to go before the taste-test but I am feeling impatient already! Stay tuned for an update later tonight, with the verdict and more pictures!I'm back!

A slice for your viewing pleasure?Okay, I know you want to know how it tasted. Personally, I found the cake (cake layer and whipped cream) not as commercially sweet (a plus from parents and me, a minus from siblings). Frankly, the cake was rather dry. Despite the original recipe did not call for brushing the cake with a liquid of some sort, I did take it upon myself to brush each layer with a bit of a mixture of cherry syrup, substitution for kirsch and touch of ru…

The Rising Sun

For the past couple of days, I had lunch at Sun Japanese Dining, which I personally thought could be the next rising sun amongst the many restaurants located in the touristy-yet-charming Chijmes, just across my office.

Sun, just established about 2 to 3 months ago, is the latest brainchild of Suntory Group and is a more dressed-down and less pricey version of Restaurant Suntory. Of course, knowing that, sets a certain expectation that Sun did not fail to deliver. Sun's specialties are kamameshi, sort of like a rice casserole and aburi, or half-broiled sushi.

Yesterday was a business lunch and for that occasion, I chose the sashimi + oden set lunch for S$17.50. The sashimi, served with thin strips of daikon and wasabi, tasted fresh and consisted of generous portions of salmon (3 pcs), yellowtail (2 pcs), scallops (2 pcs), sweet prawn (1 pc), squid (5 strips) topped off with a dollop of prawn roe. The prawn was sooo good and sweet! I wish there were more! While the sashimi was …