Sunday, February 26, 2012

Mango PLUS banana EQUALS Delicious cake :)

Mango and banana in a cake may seem like an odd combination.. Actually I think it sounds pretty yummy! There's mango and banana smoothies and I'm sure muffins as well.. so ok! not unusual at ALL =pSo I had some ripe mangoes and bananas at home and looked up recipes combining the two fruit and found one that seemed quite simple but looked yum! So I will share it with you all!
Mango and Banana Bread (adapted from Lite Bite)

1 1/2 cup plain flour
1 medium mango
1 small banana
1/2 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup yoghurt (I used cream)
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 190oC and line a square or rectangle loaf tin.
2. Peel mango and banana, dice finely and place in large bowl. Grind fruit into puree and keep aside.
3. In another bowl, add puree, olive oil and sugar and whisk until sugar is dissolved.
4. Sift in flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder and cinnamon and combine using spatula.
5. Pour batter into tin and bake for ~30 minutes or until done.
6. Allow to cool before taking out of tin and slicing.

Have fun with other fruity combinations =D
sliced up and ready to eat =D
close up of inside the bread loaf

Monday, February 20, 2012

Banana bread - from the cafe??

One of my friends at work loves to buy banana bread from a cafe down the road. I agree, it does look quite tasty and so it was one of my goals to try and make some banana bread too!
This is my first attempt.... I may need to try other recipes or try my own ^^" But it did get my friends' approval! *THUMBS UP* Although it did not rise as high and the texture was not as "bready"... it had nice chunks of banana and walnut =) and it's the taste that counts right? ;P

Banana bread


  • 1 3/4 cups plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2/3 firmly packed cup dark brown sugar
  • 100g chopped walnuts
  • 3 large over-ripe bananas
  • 2 large eggs, lightly whisked
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 100g unsalted butter, melted, cooled
  1. Preheat the oven to 175°C. Lightly grease an 11cm x 22cm loaf pan and line base and 2 long sides with a sheet of baking paper, leaving 2cm overhanging.

  2. Sift flour, cinnamon, baking powder, soda and 1/2 teaspoon salt into a bowl with the brown sugar, then add the nuts.

  3. In a separate bowl, mash the bananas with a fork or potato masher, then stir in the eggs, vanilla extract and cooled melted butter. Using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until they're just combined - don't overmix. 

  4. Scrape cake batter into prepared pan. Place in the oven and bake for 1 hour or until golden brown and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool the loaf in pan 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool. Cut into 8-10 slices
Bread cooling in loaf tin ^^
Slicing up bread~~ can you see the banana and walnut chunks? ^^
Close up of banana bread slice

So if you see it in a cafe.... you can make it too =D Suggestions for less chunky bread would be to process banana until puree and process walnuts till crumb like.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Experimental bake: kiwi & coconut muffins!

Normally when I bake, I stick to the recipe to the tee because I don't want anything to go wrong. But this time I felt like being a little experimental (just like science ^^) and creative. We had quite a few kiwi fruits at home that were going a bit soft so I thought.. Hmmm.. what can I bake with them? Most kiwi recipes just involve the kiwi raw e.g. tarts, decorating on top of cakes; and not actually being baked itself. So after googling a few recipes, I decided to try and make some muffins - you can't really go wrong with muffins and fruit XD

As I was making these, I felt like a real cook XD... adding a pinch of this.. pinch of that.. if the consistency wasn't right.. add a bit more liquid ^____^" They actually turned out quite nice. The kiwi fruit's citrus characteristics added tartness to muffins and the passionfruit seeds gave it an extra crunch along with the coconut (HAHA! sounds like a Masterchef description =p).

Kiwi and coconut muffins (makes ~16)

2 cups self-raising flour
3/4 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup dessicated coconut
1 egg
Nice and golden brown ^^
175g passionfruit yoghurt (you can use any other flavoured yoghurt but I like the crunchiness of the passionfruit ^^)
1/2 cup milk
2 kiwi fruit, diced

To decorate:
1 kiwi fruit, sliced and quartered
Dessicated coconut

1. Preheat oven to 180oC and line muffin pan.
2. Place flour, sugar and coconut in large bowl.
3. In a small bowl, whisk egg, yoghurt and milk with a fork till combined.
4. Place wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix to combine.
5. Place spoonfuls of mix in muffin holes (~3/4 full).
6. Decorate with kiwi fruit and sprinkle with coconut.
7. Bake in oven for 12-15 minutes or till golden brown.

Finished product =D fresh from the oven :)
I've got to say the muffins taste the best when fresh from the oven because they had a slight crunchiness to the outside ^__^ Because when I brought them to work the next day they were a bit soft..

anyways... BE INVENTIVE =D you never know what recipes you might discover :D

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Waffling on about Waffles!!!

I'm not sure when my love of waffles started... it may have been when I went to Brisbane and had a baking/cooking day at a friends house where my friend brought her WAFFLE MACHINE! I think the only waffles I had previously were at Max Brenner (Chocolate dessert place). 

Belgium waffles from Max Brenner
My favourite waffles are of the Belgium kind. They are thick and crispy, yet warm and fluffy on the inside. There is this place in Melbourne, just near Flinders St station that sells REALLY YUMMY BELGIUM WAFFLES!! It's called Waffle On, Degraves St. So for anyone living in Melbourne or dropping by for a holiday.. definitely a place to go!
Shop 9, Degraves St MELBOURNE =D
I think plain is the best!! =) just a dusting of icing sugar~
Anyways my dear friend realised I loved her waffle machine so much that when she visited me, she bought me one as a 'thank-you' gift! Aww thanks!! we had many waffle parties after that.. I even brought it to work xD but recently it has just been sitting there.. alone of the shelf. So one Saturday night, I had a craving for waffles and decided to revive the machine. This recipe came with the manual for the waffle machine (Breville). There are SOOO many different recipes provided e.g Crispy, golden, butter, italian style...
Awesome waffle machine =D
I chose the Golden waffles =D

1 1/2 cups self raising flour
2 tbs caster sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs, separated
1 1/2 cups cream
1 1/2 tbs melted butter

1. Sift flour, sugar and salt into a bowl.
2. Beat egg yolks until thick, add cream and mix lightly.
3. Combine egg yolk mixture and dry ingredients, stir until smooth.
4. Mix in melted butter. Beat egg whites until stiff and fold into the batter.
5. Use 1/2 cup batter for each waffle.

Top with whatever toppings you like! Chocolate, fruit, ice cream, jam... OR be creative and make SAVOURY waffles! just add spring onion and ham :)

My brother's invention of savoury waffles! actually tasted REALLY nice :)
My sister's chocolate ganache and vanilla ice cream waffle! mmm

Monday, February 6, 2012

February Birthdays~~

I like baking for others... especially birthday cakes =) Although my cakes aren't super fancy like the ones in the shop.. they are baked with love =p haha!
lighting the candle~~
My dad's birthday falls on the same day as my colleague so had the opportunity to bake 2 cakes!!

So happy it worked :)
The first cake was made together with my mum... Pandan chiffon cake. When my mum was separating the egg whites and egg yolks, a yolk accidentally fell in the whites >___< My mum fished it out with a spoon but I was a bit doubtful to whether it would still work out.... but it DID =D hehe.. the cream of tartar and caster sugar probably help stabilise the egg whites.. so SUCCESS!! You can find the recipe here. It's the same recipe as the green tea chiffon cake but instead of green tea powder, I added half a teaspoon of pandan essence. Of course the flavour would be improved it I was using pandan leaves.

slice for u~~~~
The second cake was a Sachertorte! I think it semi failed though because I didn't beat the egg whites to soft peaks ><" so the cake didn't rise properly. However for a nice, dense and chocolatey cake.. it was a success =P it was fun icing at well! (I used a chopstick because i STILL don't own PIPING BAGS T_T).

Sachertorte recipe

85g plain flour
4 tbsp cocoa powder
110g butter
200g caster sugar
4 eggs, separated

To decorate
2 tbsp apricot jam
200g dark chocolate, chopped
175ml cream

1. Preheat oven to 180oC and line cake tin.
2. Sift flour and cocoa together.
3. In a small saucepan, heat the butter till melted and then remove from heat. Stir in sugar until well mixed.
4. Beat in egg yolks the pour mix into dry ingredients and still until well combined.
5. Whisk egg whites with electric mixer until soft peaks form. Fold into chocolate mixture, one third at a time.
6. Pour batter into cake tin and bake for 40 minutes.
7. Warm jam and spread over cake. Melt chocolate and cream over a double boiler and ice cooled cake.
Iced and decorated with a chopstick xP
Although not every bake can be a success... It's the thought that counts :) I'm sure they'll appreciate it ;P