Monday, January 30, 2017

CNY - Hazelnut White Coffee Cookies

I was amazed by the shape of the cookies when someone posted the Coffee Bean cookies as they really looked like coffee beans.  Hence, I decided to give this recipe a try.

The originally recipe called for 3 in 1 instant coffee powder, I wanted something different so I used the Hazelnut White Coffee powder instead.

After mixing the hazelnut white coffee powder, I just realized the colour wasn't right, it was too pale, not black at all.  However,  it's too late for me to U turn, I could only take this as a lesson learned.  Taste wise, from my view, it passed the mark but I think the sugar could be cut down.

Please find original recipe by Aunty Young here.

If you like hazelnut flavor which looks like a raw coffee bean, you can below recipe 

Hazelnut White Coffee Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 110g Salted Butter
  • 50g Icing Sugar (sifed)
  • 25g Hazelnut White Coffee Powder     }  Dry Ingredients:
  • 10g Cocoa Powder                                }  Sift and mix well
  • 180g Cake Flour                                    }

Method:

1. Beat butter and icing sugar on low speed until pale and light (about 3 mins). 
2. Fold in dry ingredients till well mixed (don't overmix)
3. Portion dough into 4g each, roll into an oval shape, use a knife or cutter to make a slice lightly that look like coffee bean. 
4. Place cookies on baking tray lined with parchment paper. Chill for an hour (at least 30 mins)
5.  Preheat oven to 150*C (top-bottom heat) 15-20 mins before baking.
6.  Bake at 160*C for 10 mins and then 150*C for another 15 mins.
7.  Transfer to cooling rack.  Store in airtight container once it's cooled down. 

Thursday, January 26, 2017

CNY Cookies - Almond Cookies

Among all the CNY cookies that I baked, Almond Cookie is always my favorite and it's always in my baking list for CNY.  I like its almond taste plus melt in your mouth after bite. For people who don't like almond, most likely they will not fancy this cookie.
This year, I baked two different shapes of Almond cookies with 4 recipes.  For first batch, I rolled the dough into a ball and made it like a tangerine.  For the second batch,  I rolled the dough to 3mm thickness and cut out using a flower cookie cutter.  Both were good, the tangerine-shaped one needed longer baking time since it's bigger.  The flower-shaped's seemed more melt in your mouth, it could be flatter and smaller.
A couple of friends asked me for this recipe as they liked it as well.   This year, I tried to incorporate some techniques that I learned from my school
 to bake these cookies, below is an updated recipe.

Preparation:
- Preheat oven at 175*C at 15 mins. 

Ingredients:
- 120g ground almond (super fine)           }
- 92g caster sugar                                      } Ingredient A
- 1/4 tsp salt                                                   }
- 180g plain flour (sifted)                         }
- 1 tsp baking powder (sifted)                 }
- 3/4 tsp baking soda (sifted)                    }

- 122ml sunflower cooking oil

- Egg wash : 1 egg yolk (beaten mixed with a few drops of oil and strained for smoothness

- Some almond stripes and bites for decor
 
Method
1. Use a whisk, mix ingredient A (ground almond, caster sugar, salt, flour, baking powder and soda) well.
2. Add cooking oil into ingredient A, mix till combined and form dough.  Wrap dough and chill in fridge for at least 30 mins.
3.  (a) For tangerine shape, scale dough at 8g, roll them into a ball  (b) For  flower shape, roll dough to 3mm thickness and cut out with cookie cutter.
4.  
Arrange each ball on lined baking trays and egg wash the top surface.  (a) For tangerine shape, 
 insert with an almond stripe (b) 
For flower shape, sprinkle some almond bites.
   
5.  Chill for an hour (at least 30 mins).
  
6. (a) For tangerine shape, bake in a preheated oven at 175*C for 10 mins and then 170*C (to minimize crack line) 
for 12 mins
or until lightly browned.  (b) For flower shape, bake at 165*C for 15-16 mins or until lightly browned.
7. Cool well before storage.
  

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

CNY Cookies - Pork Floss Cookies

My family likes pork floss especially when it goes with porridge.  Every time we went Taiwan for vacation, most of the homestay or hotel will serve pork floss to go with porridge, this seems to be Taiwan breakfast tradition/uniqueness.  

Using pork floss as an ingredient to make Chinese New Year cookies a popular item within the baking blogging community in recent years.  This year, I decided to give this a shot since many bakers raved about it.

It's quite costly to make this cookie as the pork floss is expensive.  Making a recipe with yield about 30 pieces (one jar/container), the ingredients has costed me about S$8.  This seems to be the most expensive item among all the CNY cookies I made this year.

The method of making this cookie is easy, similar to butter cookie, just with an addition of pork floss and  sprinkle with some sesame seeds.  

Thanks Zoe for sharing this recipe.  The outcome is well received by my family.  It's a savoury cookie with melt in your mouth texture.  If you are a pork floss fan, I believe you will like it.

Here you go.. the recipe.

Pork Floss Cookies
Ingredients
  • 100g unsalted butter (room temperature)
  • 20g icing sugar 
  • 60g plain flour              }   Dry ingredients:
  • 60g cornflour                }    Mix together and sift 
  • 1/4 tsp salt                     }
  • 1/8 tsp baking powder }
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) pork floss 
  • 1 tbsp roasted white sesame seeds

  • Egg wash: 1 egg yolk with a few drops of oil.
  • Some white  sesame seeds to sprinkle

Method:
1. Beat butter and icing sugar on low speed until pale and light (about 3 mins). 
2. Fold in dry ingredients till well mixed (don't overmix)
3. Add in pork floss and white sesame seeds,  mix well.  Wrap dough and chill in fridge for at least 30 mins.
4. Portion dough into 7g each, roll into a ball and place them on baking tray lined with parchment paper. Chill for an hour (at least 30 mins)
5.  Preheat oven to 175*C (top-bottom heat) 15-20 mins before baking.
6.  Egg wash the cookies and sprinkle some sesame seeds on top.   Bake at 175*C for 12 mins or until golden brown.
7.  Transfer to cooling rack.  Store in airtight container once it's cooled down. 



Tuesday, January 17, 2017

CNY Cookies - Butter Cookies

In the same afternoon, beside pineapple tarts, I baked the butter cookies.  This time, I used President unsalted butter with a pinch of salt to replace Golden Churn Salted Butter.  Somehow, it didn't taste as fragrant as the one with Golden Churn Salted Butter.  Probably, my taste bud leans toward to salty side.   It was a good experiment as it helped me to determine the best butter for this cookie that suited my preference.

Recipe ?  Pls refer to following link.


CNY Cookies - Pineapple Tarts

How not to bake Chinese New Year Cookies to usher the Chinese New Year?  I am glad that my higher cert program just ended in time for me to do some baking for Chinese New Year.  The flip side is I don't have a break as immediate after the course, I rushed into the Chinese New Year Cookies baking spree.

In view of the early reunion lunch with my in-laws' family on Jan 15 , I decided to kick start the baking with pineapple tarts as I wanted to give them this cookie when we met up. Pineapple tart is the most favorite cookie by the majority of the Singaporean.  It's a must item during the Chinese New Year. 


This year, I targeted to bake 3 packs of pineapple jam.  It's 50% more than what I did in the past.  I baked two variations of recipes, one was adopted from Sonia of  Nasi Lemak Lover (which use condense milk), another was my old recipe  (I use milk powder).  The aim was to compare two recipes and determine whether I should continue using my recipe moving forward.

Frankly speaking, I still prefer my recipe as  I think it's more fragrant and buttery. I've the same feedback from my family and siblings.   Anyway, taste is very individual.  What taste good to me may not taste good to you.  Hence, you don't need to take my word.



If you would like to give my recipe a try, here you go.. 


Pineapple Tarts Recipe

Preparation:
- Preheat fan oven at 175*C for 15 mins. Baking Time: 21-23 mins. Makes about 70 pcs.

Ingredients 
- 300g butter (cold and firm)
- 2 big egg yolks       
- ¼ vanilla essence

- 400g plain flour   } sift
-  12g milk powder }
- 1 Tbsp icing sugar }

- 700g pineapple jam
- 1 egg yolk + 2 drops of cooking oil and water} for egg wash

Method
1. Cream butter till pale (about 3 mins), add in egg yolks with vanilla essence one at a time and mix till combine.  (don't over beat)
2. Sift the flours, milk powder and icing sugar together, add into step 1.  Gently mix them together by hand. Use finger to stir and scrap aside the flour to butter batter till even distributed. Kneed for a few minutes to form dough.  Chill for at least 30 mins.
3. Weigh 10g pineapple jam, roll into a ball. Repeat the same step till finish the jam. Put aside.
4. Remove dough (step 2) from fridge, portion them into 10g each.  Roll into ball, make an indent, wrap with pineapple jam ball from step 3, roll into a round shape and make some design using cookie cutter or scraper, etc 
and then place it on a baking tray lined with baking paper.  Chill for another 30 mins.
5. Remove from fridge, egg wash tart.  Bake at 175*C (top bottom heat) for 10 mins and then lower to 170*C for another 10-12 mins  till lightly golden. (inner temperature is about 170-165*C)
6. Allow tarts to cool on wire rack before storing .


Sunday, January 8, 2017

Butter Cookies


When I was a kid, I loved Danish butter cookies and always ate as breakfast, sometimes I also ate as snack after meal.  Though these days, I cut down a lot, once in a while, I still crave for it.
 Lately, I found many bloggers were experimenting and trying to identify the best butter cookies, it enticed me to try out and therefore decided to join the fun.  I did 4 recipes within a weekend, below were my finding.  

The first recipe was adopted from baking for the happy kids, same as her, I used unsalted butter.  I liked the texture of the cookies, it indeed gave me the melt in the mouth effect but the taste was too light and not enough sweetness.
 The second recipe was adopted from Miss Tam Chiak, same as her, I used Golden Churn salted butter.  The cookies were crispy outside, melt in the mouth, it was very fragrant and buttery.   On my first bite, I really liked it but after a few bites, I found it too salty for me.  

The third recipe was adopted from one of the article from her world plus, I used Golden Churn salted butter.   On my first bite, in comparison with Miss Tam Chiak's, I think the cookies were less fragrant and buttery, other than that, it was perfectly good.   

I decided to improvise the third recipe and hence made another batch of cookie.   I added 10g caster sugar and 25g more of butter.   This time, the cookie turned out super good.  It tasted like Danish cookies, buttery, crispy and melt in the mouth. 

If you like butter cookies, try this recipe! 


Ingredients:
  • 120g cold salted butter 
  • 1 egg yolk (beaten)       } mix 
  • 2 tsp vanilla essence    } together
  • 65g cake flour    } Dry
  • 20g plain flour    }  Ingredients: 
  • 65g cornstarch    }  sift and mix 
  • 40g icing sugar   } together
  • 10 g caster sugar }
  • 5g milk powder   }



Method:
1. Beat butter on low speed until pale and light (about 2-3 mins). 

2. Add egg yolk and vanilla essence a little at a time on medium low speed till combine.  
3. Fold in dry ingredients till dough forms (don't overmix), wrap dough and chill in fridge for at least an hour. 
4.  Fill the dough in a piping bag with desired nozzle.  Pipe on baking tray lined with parchment paper. Chill for another 1 hour. 
5.  Preheat oven to 190*C (top-bottom heat) 15-20 mins before baking.
6.  Bake at 180*C for 10 mins and 160*C for another 8-10 mins or until golden brown.
7.  Transfer to cooling rack.  Store in airtight container once it's cooled down. 

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