Tag Archives: dessert

Grilled Peaches

29 Sep

It’s no longer summer but this was a tasty summer treat that can still be enjoyed if you can find some peaches. It’s super simple. Peal and slices peaches into wedges. Toss with some honey and cinnamon. Grill on medium heat until caramelized (light grill marks). Enjoy warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

look at them glisten

Chocolate and Lemon Tarts

13 Sep

This summer was a tart filled summer. Tarts are surprisingly easy to make and turn out pretty fluted edges with no effort. You can make all types of tarts because there are so many types of crusts that be used. Flaky butter pie crusts for sweet or savory tarts and graham, shortbread or cookie crusts for sweet tarts. Plus, most of the time you only need to bake the crust and not the filling so it’s very easy. The pan I used in California was a scratched up 9″ aluminum pan I got for $2 at the thrift shop. I have a non-stick 10″ pan with a removable bottom at home in NY. I totally recommend the latter. It was a Christmas gift purchased from Crate and Barrel in my annual Cousins Secret Santa. Thanks Lisa!

Sour Cream Lemon Tart

I made a lemon tart following this recipe. It’s basically a pudding thickened with corn starch and egg yolk with lemon juice and sour cream stirred in. It’s really simple to make, especially if you use a store bought refrigerator pastry crust like I did. The result was tasty but didn’t look amazing. The zest is visible and it was difficult to smooth out the filling. It also didn’t set well at all. We drove this to the final destination and one hard stop caused the filling to shift out of the crust. Tasty but not very presentable.

after the car ride

I made the chocolate satin tart for a friend’s birthday party. I let him pick a dessert and he said anything with chocolate! It’s kind of funny because chocolate would have been the last thing I would have chosen but I have to accommodate the birthday boy! It took me a long time to decide what to make because it had to be a chocolate dessert that was portable and would survive a hot car ride to New Jersey. Chocolate cake/cupcakes would have been too fragile, cheesecake/mousse/puddings would have melted, and brownies weren’t special enough.

The recipe I used turned out to be perfect because the filling was very sturdy. That’s probably because it’s mainly chocolate! It’s almost like a firm chocolate ganache tart. The crust was made from shortbread cookies, butter and sugar. The recipe is very easy. The only thing I changed was to replace the rosemary/mint for a tablespoon of instant coffee granules. Coffee brings out the rich chocolate flavor.

The birthday boy loved the dessert. He also got a store bought cappuccino birthday cake but this 10″ tart was able to serve ~14 people. Since it’s so rich, a smaller slice is preferable. Milk is highly recommended!

What chocolate dessert would you have chosen to make?

Taiyaki <fish waffles)<

4 Mar

taiyaki waffle
Taiyaki made with waffle batter.

My taiyaki pan finally arrived!! It took a week to get to me. Shipping was a ridiculous flat $10 for such a small pan. I got it off ebay from California. If someone knows where to find one in NYC please let me know for future reference. I searched all over Chinatown with no luck. I DID find a takoyaki pan for $12 at a restaurant supply on Bowery St. which is a lot cheaper than Kam Man on Canal St. Takoyaki =/= taiyaki. Too bad.

taiyaki in pan
The pan looks big but it’s actually not that big.

I tried two recipes. The first recipe was from Cooking with Dog on Youtube. I love those videos! I’ve never had real taiyaki except for the chibi-taiyaki from Sweet Breams in San Mateo, CA so I’m not sure what to look for. The batter from Cooking with Dog’s recipe is not that sweet which compliments the sweet store bought red bean paste inside. I actually messed up and did 100g of water instead of 100ml. The second batter was a simple waffle batter that had milk, oil, all purpose flour, a lot more baking powder and required whipping egg whites to fold into the batter. More work, more fat and actually didn’t taste as good as the Japanese recipe. I did half nutella and half red bean paste in this batch. If you can find red bean paste that’s in the pouch, I recommend that over the can. It tastes sweeter and is mashed not pureed so it’s more authentic. Or you can make your own.

taiyaki cropped
From the Japanese recipe.

I still have to work on cooking it properly to get it to crisp up without burning. Next experiment will be the recipe below with all purpose flour instead of cake flour and the correct amount of water.

taiyaki nutella
Waffle batter with nutella.

Taiyaki Batter

by Cooking with Dog

Ingredients:
100g Cake Flour (3.53 oz)
2/3 tsp Baking Soda
2 tbsp Sugar
1/2 Egg (30g/1.06 oz)
100ml Water (3.38 fl oz)

Directions:
1. Sift together flour, baking soda and sugar in a large bowl.
2. Whisk together egg and water.
3. Make a well in the flour and slowly pour in egg and water while whisking outwards to incorporate all the flour. This will prevent lumps.

Homemade Cookies

10 Feb

I’ve been craving cookies ever since Cindy took me to Momofuku Milk Bar. Not just any old cookie though, I wanted Momofuku cookies. A quick search online led me to the official recipe for the Blueberry and Cream cookies on Martha Stewart’s site! So of course, I had to make them. While the recipe is not complicated, there are several steps and uncommon ingredients. To be authentic, I went out to get European butter (Irish butter from Trader Joe’s) and glucose (from Choc-Oh-Lot Plus) as per the recipe’s ingredient list. The only thing I changed was to substitute a blend of chopped, dried strawberries, cherries and blueberries for the blueberries because my boyfriend doesn’t love blueberries (and blueberries were expensive at Trader Joe’s!) I got exactly 14 large cookies. Unfortunately, they were flat and not humped like the originals but they tasted amazing. The glucose really keeps the cookie moist and dense while the butter makes for crispy edges.

giant cookies

Here’s the recipe courtesy of Martha Stewart. Watch the video for step by step instructions.

Blueberry and Cream Cookies

by Christina Tosi @ Momofuku Milk Bar

Ingredients

Makes 14 cookies

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) Plugra European-style unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons light-brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup glucose
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup dried blueberries
  • 1/2 cup plus 1/3 cup Milk Crumbs

Directions

  1. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment mix together butter, sugars, and glucose until well combined. Add egg and mix until well combined.
  3. Add flour mixture and mix until well combined. Add blueberries and milk crumbs and mix until well combined. Using an ice cream scoop about 2 1/8 inches in diameter, scoop dough into balls and place about 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets.
  4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Transfer baking sheets to refrigerator until dough is chilled, about 15 minutes. Transfer baking sheets to oven and bake, rotating pans halfway through baking, until cookies are golden brown and tops begin to crackle, about 15 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool.

cookie batter
Cookie dough with dried berries and milk crumbs right before mixing.
dough ball
Cookie dough balls. Making this broke my cheap ice cream scoop! I really want to get a smaller one for regular sized cookies.

Milk Crumbs

milk crumbs

Ingredients

Makes enough for 14 cookies

  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon nonfat milk powder
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup white chocolate, melted

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 225 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons milk powder, flour, cornstarch, sugar, and salt. Stir in melted butter until well combined. Spread mixture on prepared baking sheet and transfer to oven. Bake until dried and crumbly, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove milk crumble from oven and let cool completely.
  3. Transfer milk crumble to a large bowl and fold in remaining 2 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons milk powder and white chocolate. Use immediately or transfer to an airtight container and keep refrigerated until ready to use.

cookies
NOM NOM NOM! Buttery cookie goodness.

I also made shortbread jam thumbprints to mail, along with above cookies, to my boyfriend. These were much easier to make though less interesting flavor wise. Mine are cracked because I had less than 1 cup of butter and forgot to decrease the flour mixture. My cousin, Patty, recommends adding a few tablespoons of confectioners sugar to make the cookies softer. After preparing recipe below, roll the dough into balls, flatten on the cookie sheet, make indentation and fill with jam.

shortbread

Shortbread Supreme

Recipe courtesy allrecipes.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 cups sifted all-purpose flour

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. In a medium bowl, beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Stir in flour by hand until the dough is smooth. Extra flour can be added if the dough is not stiff enough to roll out.
  3. On a floured surface, roll dough to 1/4 inch thickness and cut into desired shapes with cookie cutters. Place 1 inch apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.
  4. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, until the edges are lightly browned. Cool on cookie sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire cooling racks.

Momofuku night

31 Jan

My sister treated me to a night of Momofuku goodness at the Noodle Bar and Milk Bar for my birthday. I haven’t had a lot of free time to post so things are piling up but here are some pictures. We had really good seats at the open kitchen bar so we watched the chefs and sous chefs make everything in front of use.

momofuku menu
The one page menu. Options are very limited here but that’s okay because everything’s interesting. More options/specials on the walls and they have a four course prix fixe for $30.

pork buns
The famous pork buns meet the hype. It’s a must try, really delicious.

momofuku ramen
We both got the Momofuku noodle bowl. Fresh noodles with pork, semi poached egg, scallion, nori, naruto, and bamboo? It was okay, a little better with siracha sauce but don’t add too much because it gets super spicy! I’ve had better ramen at other places.

Then we headed over to the Milk bar only a few blocks away (next to Ssam).
milk bar
The fridge case with the cakes and pies.

crack pie
Crack pie = sugary buttery gooey goodness in a crust. So good.

flavored milk
This is why it’s the milk bar, they serve cereal flavored milk. It’s pricey though so we didn’t try it. They also have soft serve (in cereal and other flavors) and smoothies made from soft serve.

chocolate malt cake
Chocolate malt cake with marshmallows and malt balls inside. Gooey and dense chocolate goodness. I’m not a huge chocolate fan but my sister ordered this.

We also ordered the compost cookie, cornflake chocolate chip marshmallow cookie and blueberry cream cookie. OMG these were great. My favorite was the blueberry cream cookie because it was like having a scone with milk in cookie form. No great picture of the cookies but there are lots if you google it. Martha Stewart also has the blueberry cookie recipe directly from the chef at Milk bar so I will have to test that out soon. Calls for glucose and European butter! Luckily I think Trader Joe’s has Irish butter but I’m not sure if I will be able to easily get glucose. Apparently Wilton’s makes it so hopefully the candy supply store near me (Choc-Oh-Lot Plus) will have it.

Girl’s night out + bday gift!

24 Jan

My girl cousins in NYC decided to gather and do dinner together so we headed out into the city Friday night after work/classes. We were aiming for Inoteca for some Italian panini sandwiches but the wait was 1 hour so we went over to Essex instead since they had tables. I think our waitress must have hated us because we sat there for what seemed like hours just chatting and talking about our love lives without ordering a ton of appetizers and drinks buuuut it was a great night out. They wouldn’t let me pay because my birthday was coming up. I had the lamb chops with ricotta gnocchi and spinach which was cooked very well and tasted delish. Other dishes at the table included seafood pasta, mussels belgian style (their sweet potato fries were mushy), blackened fish, and duck breast (I love duck). Dessert menu was very unoriginal so we skipped on that.

girls night out lamb

I kept forgetting to take pictures all night so this is after I ate some already.

Afterwards, we migrated to Ferrara in Little Italy for desserts. We went to the smaller (less famous?) one because we knew they had seats. The carrot cake and tiramisu cake were really good. Other people got canoli and cheesecake but I didn’t taste. Almond cappuccino was also good but was not sweet after eating cake so don’t order them together. Each item was ~$5.. including the cappuccino!

girls night out carrot

Carrot cake.

girls night out tiramisu

Tiramisu cake.

girls night out coffee

Almond Cappuccino.

My sister and brother got me the laptop lunchbox!!! Version 2!! I’ve been pining for one for ages but couldn’t bring myself to spend $30 on a lunchbox. It’s bigger than I imaged but I’m so excited to start packing meals in it. =D Thanks Cindy and Jason! I wonder if people will find me weird if I bring that to school.

laptop lunchbox

Laptop lunchbox!!

No bento on Saturday because I went home late, slept late and had work very early. Plus, I usually have lunch with a friend and dinner at home on Saturdays. Maybe I should pack a healthy snack box instead of sucking on a bubble tea all day. Not bringing food usually means unhealthy food as demonstrated by today: hawaiian fried rice (halal style so kinda greasy) and mango bubble tea.

Steamed Egg Custard Dessert

11 Mar

A simple dessert that is super easy to make and super satisfying. The texture of this egg custard is very smooth and can be eaten warm or chilled. Sweetness level can be adjusted to your taste. This Chinese dessert is similar to the Spanish flan!

Unfortunately I ate it before I took a picture. Plus mine were in white bowls so they weren’t that pretty to photograph anyway. Here’s a pic I found online of what they look like.

Steamed Egg Custard Dessert
Makes 4 Chinese rice bowls, will serve 4-6 if using ramekins.

4 extra-large eggs
2 cups milk
~4 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp sweetened condensed milk (optional)

1. Mix all ingredients together trying not to form bubbles. Let mixture sit if a lot of bubbles form so they can pop.
2. For a super smooth consistency you can strain the mixture but I didn’t bother.
3. Pour into bowls/ramekins.
4. Boil water in steamer (or whatever steaming contraption you create). Once boiling, place bowls in steamer and turn heat to medium-low. Steam for 20 minutes. To check if it’s done, stick chopstick into surface of custard, if no liquid custard wells up then it’s done. Custard will feel very soft.
5. Let it sit uncovered until it’s cool enough to grab out of the steamer. Enjoy warm or chill for a few hours until really cold, then enjoy.