Friday, December 21, 2012

Homemade Sushi

It has been awhile since I made sushi. We had sushi last weekend and had the leftover ginger, that I really like, so I made some sushi, and decided to take some pictures and post it. I think I did post it before, but it has been a long time ago, I almost forgot how to make it. First, slice all the ingredients as in picture.

I used calrose rice, or you can get sushi rice. Cook 1 cup of rice with 2 cup of water, I used 2 cups of rice with 4 cups of water. After the rice is cooked, I added a little bit of salt and vinegar. I packed it and flattened it as in picture, and sprinkled black sesame on it.

Flipped it over, cut the seaweed into half, and put it on top of the rice. Then put the cucumber, cream cheese and imitation crab meat. The crab meat is already cooked, so you won't need to cook it anymore. You can also use other ingredients such as avocado, or smoked salmon

This is how it looked like after it's rolled. Press it tight so the rice is packed tightly.

Cut it up with a warm knife. When the rice gets cold, it gets sticky. I use a bowl of hot water and soak the knife in the hot water everytime it gets sticky. Sushi is best with pickled ginger, wasabi and soy sauce. It's very easy to make isn't it?

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Sugar Cookies

Guess who made these cookies? Hard to tell huh? Well, my big boy really wanted to make cookies and decorate them, so here's the result!

I've got the recipe from All Recipe. I like their recipe, they always have good recipes there. Anyway, everybody is getting cookies for Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Noah's school (Montessori) is having a party tomorrow and I told them I was going to bring a cake. This is the 6th cake I made so far. I decided to go with simple, and use the skills I learned from my class. I used the fondant for the snowmen, and buttercream icing for the rest, inside has another layer of cream cheese icing, with banana cake recipe, Noah's teacher's favourite cake so far.

I used tip 47 for the lines and 21 for the weaving basket at the sides of the cake. Tip 21 too for the rosette and 1M for the flowers at the bottom, with tip 3 for the middle part of the flowers and the words. Only took me about an hour to decorate this, compared to the other cakes this is so much easier.

Hope theyèll like my cake, and you have a wonderful Christmas too!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Noah's Birthday Party

 It was Noah's 3rd birthday. I wasn't going to throw a party but few days before his birthday, he told me he wanted a birthday party. He wanted to invite his friends over, and have a firetruck carrot cake! He wasn't even 3 yet. So mommy had to throw everything together, the very last minute.

 I saw this very cool Christmas tree from facebook, my friend shared the picture and I tried, I am glad I did. I received many compliments from everybody. It is very easy to make, and look fantastic. I used an apple as a base, cut a hole in the middle, stick a couple toothpicks (angled) and stick the carrot in it. A lot of people asked me how I did it, so here's the tips. I soaked the carrot overnight so it will be not as hard. My friend bought me some fruits/cookies cutter all the way from Japan, and I got a chance to use them. They are perfect to cut the fruits into shapes. Noah helped but I had to finish this as soon as I can because while he was helping, he was also eating. If it doesn't go into the tree, it will end up in his mouth!

I spent less than $10 for his lovely tree, would probably cost more if you buy one from Edible arrangement.

 Here's Noah's firetruck. I've gotten lazy so I just made it as simple as possible. So far I've made 5 cakes this month, and 3 more to go! It's a lot of trouble, but when you see how happy they are, it's all worth it.

I made this cake for my very good neighbour, her birthday's today. She likes purple colour (me too) and I dad make a bunch of purple flowers not long ago, I am so glad she likes it. She loves the vanilla cake recipe that I used, well everything works well in the end. There'll be many busy days ahead, I'll try to keep up...and post more pictures!

Friday, December 14, 2012

The ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie

This is actually my mother in law's favourite recipe, one that she never forgets to mention, almost all the time, how her oldest grandson really likes them. So I've decided to give it a try, hubby thinks it's just okay,he still prefers the nutty ones that I always make for him, but hubby's never a big fan of chocolate chip cookies. I think this is still the best chocolate chip cookies that I've had, so far.

Here's the recipe ( from Chatelaine Food),

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup unsalted butter, room temparature
1 1/4 cup lightly packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 cups dark chocolate chip ( I just used the 1 packet of 250 g)

1. Preheat oven to 350. Lightly spray baking sheet with oil ( I used the butter wrapper instead, works well, save money). Beat butter with sugar until creamy, beat in egg and vanilla, gradually add in flour and dry ingredients until just combined. Mix in chocolate chip.

2. Scoop 1 tbp of dough , placing at least 2 inches apart.

3. Bake in the centre of oven until  cookies are golden around the edges about 8-10 minutes. Remove to a heat proof surface for 2 mins then to wire rack to cool completely,

4. If making ahead, form dough into a thick disc and wrap well. Refrigerate up to 2 weeks  or freeze up to a month. Cookies keeps well in a covered container for 2 days.

I added red and green sugar sprinkles on it so it is more festive~

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Chocolate Pinwheel

I've made this cookies before, but usually I do not add colour to it, I thought it is a good idea to put some colour for this festive season. 

For the dough ingredients;
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
dash of salt.

Cream butter and sugar, add eggs until it's flight and fluffy, add vanilla, followed by flour and baking powder. 
Roll it out in rectangular shape as in picture below, on a wax paper. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

In the mean time prepare the chocolate batter.
2 cups semi sweet chocolate chip
2 tbs butter
1/4 vanilla
Melt them in a sauce pan under low heat.

Pour the chocolate onto the chilled dough, spread them evenly. I tried to make it red and green but somehow I did not add enough red, or maybe I should add some yellow to it, anyway I think this colour is pretty. I rolled out the dough and tried to do something different to make it more attractive for little kids.

 This is how it looked like after I rolled them up and cut it into 1.5- 2 cm slices. 

After baking it in the oven at 350 about 13-15 minutes, the house smells like chocolate.. and cookies!

Cashewnut cookies

Cashewnut cookies

Christmas time is almost here. I'm starting to get busy with my cookies. I don't buy gifts, I bake cookies, and give them as gifts, and people usually loves them. I really don't know to get my in laws who has everything already, so this is something that I can do for them, and they like. Of all my cookies, this is one of them that they like, so I'm sharing it here with everybody.

1/2 cup softened butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg yolk
1 3/4 cup flour

Mix butter and sugar, until soft and fluffy. Add in vanilla and then egg yolk. Put the flour in last. Do not put all at once, add more if it's still too wet, or less if it's already to dry...
Roll it out, and use cookie cutter to cut the shape that you like.
Glaze the top of the cookie with the remaining egg white with a brush.
Add split cashewnuts. Grease the baking tray before putting the cookies on it.
Bake in the oven at 350 for 13-15 minutes.
Cool at wire rack, get it out before it gets too cold otherwise it will stick to the tray, but not too hot too because the cookies will be too soft to be moved.

Enjoy the cookies!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Mermaid Theme Birthday Cake

Mermaid on the rock

My friend's daughter had a birthday party last weekend, I asked what she'd like for her cake, I was hoping that she'll like roses so I can make a simple one, but her mom said she'll like mermaid. She was here last Friday when I was baking the banana cakes, when she said " I hate banana cake" . I was thinking, 'oh no'. Luckily she changed her mind because she helped bake the cake, and before she left, she said it's gonna be the best cake in the whole wide world!

This is how I put the bananas in between the cake, it actually gives more banana flavor, it's just too good!

The cake is iced, ready to be decorated.

I am actually quite proud that I made this cake, I don't even know how to bake a cake 4 months ago, and I've come so far along. My beloved brother used to tell me my cupcake is hard as rock, and I've never baked ever since. I then learned about the secret of not baking hard rock cake, is not to stir too much after you put the flour in.

                 I bought the mermaid body from Bulk Barn store, but the rest is edible. I used the marshmallow fondant recipe for the sea creatures, buttercream icing (from Wilton) for the rest of the cake and brown sugar for the sand. The scale part I used tip 80, the waves was tip 21 and the water on the rock was a mistake, tried to do like the wave but it didn't look nice... so I removed it, and part of it left on the rock, it looked nicer that way. The shell on the mermaid body was tip 21. Hope you like the cake, this cake is not only for my friend's daughter's birthday but to all who loves mermaid. 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

My First time making Indian meal!

My friend taught me how to make this butter chicken, roti and yellow rice. It was so good, I kept bugging her to teach me. So she finally showed me her secret, and now I'm sharing her secret (with her permission).

I never know it was so easy to make roti. It's also very healthy. You just need to buy the right kind of flour, one that says it's for roti, pratha, puri and so on. My friend did not measure the ingredient as she's an expert already. I tried to measure it, so I can put it here in my blog.

For the roti, I used 3 1/2 cup special roti flour, and 2 cups of water. I just use the Kitchen aid, or you can use the breadmaker too. After it becomes a ball, I rolled it up into a ball, then flattened it by rolling pin. You can also put cheese inside and fried it, or just eat it plain, they are good either way. If you stuffed it with grated cheese, you'll have to put some olive oil so it won't stick to the pan.

For the rice, my friend stir fried some chopped garlic and onion in some olive oil, then added bay leaves, cloves, and 1 cup of brasmati rice with 3 cups of water, and a tablespoon of chicken stock. You can add yellow coloring, or if you have tumeric powder, it's even better. I hope I did not forget everything she said. I told her to make a blog and put all her recipes in because she cooks a lot of good food that I want to learn, but unfortunately she is too busy.

Maybe next time when I am getting better with this recipe I'll show more pictures and better instructions. Hubby enjoys them, and so are the kids. I think Noah might find an Indian girlfriend when he grows up because he really likes Indian food.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Christmas Party

It was Kiana's first time meeting Santa. We were wondering how she was going to react but she was fine. I saw many kids crying and won't want to go near Santa. I wonder what made them so scared. Is it the fake beard?

Santa asked Noah what he wants for Christmas, he said hockey net (as suggested by daddy). Later grandma asked what does he wants for Christmas, he said, ball.

Well, I guess he'll be getting them is he is a good boy. Maybe he should said.. all I want for Christmas is to stop having nightmares! And Kiana got her 2 front bottom teeth for Christmas.