1 day to Christmas- Christmas Dom Fruit Cake


What is your Christmas list?

Would it be a puppy? a Kitchen aid? or perhaps a diamond ring?

One of my favourite songs is My grown up Christmas list a cover by Kelly Clarkson. There is something about this song that get me in the spirit somehow. It’s a song that reflects on giving and receiving. It’s about how life is alot more than material gifts and how I take things for granted easily.

One of the things I take for granted is how blessed I am to have loved ones by my side. This year has been painful-and I have witness and experience losing close ones. It did taught me a lesson though, it made me realize that we should always cherish the people beside us.

Then the economy meltdown that has been happening around us. I can’t help but feel for others who are affected by it. As it hit home (like literally), the tightening of our belts somehow trigger memories of when we first dated-where money was really scarce but the walks in the parks and the laughs we had were far more precious than what we cannot afford.

Dreams-that’s what it was. Dreams always get us going isn’t it? And somehow, Christmas time made me dream more. It’s contagious I think. And Dream is a goal with a time line attached to it isn’t it?

What do you dream of? a car? a house? Maybe something bigger like volunteering without worrying about finances? What about a cure for Autism? Or perhaps greater money being placed for interventions for Autism… or more intervention for families in need?

And then we have life simple’s pleasures. Food. What is Christmas without good food? Seafood? Roast? Turkey? Honey Baked Ham? Maybe a slice of Dom infused fruit cake?

So besides my very grown up Christmas List- My bake for this year Christmas is Dome Fruit cake! My grandma bought me a bottle of DOM liqour and has been encouraging me to use it somehow…and since I have been procrastinating about doing my Christmas baking this year-I decided to use whatever I have in the kitchen.

In fact, I was quite generous while marinating the mixed fruits and glace fruits with Dom-TWO full cups for 5 days! WOAH! Now that’s suppose to be lethal right?

But for the final product.. my grandma said “NOT strong enough” DOH DOH DOH!

Having said that, the fruit cake passed her quality inspection-and it was moist enough. I loved it!



Christmas Dom Fruit Cake
(Adapted from Australian Women’s Weekly Food We Love)
2 cups of DOM
3-4 cups of mixed fruits and mixed peel
1-2 cups of mixed glace fruits (I love glace cherries so I was really generous with them!)

250grams of butter
3/4 cup of brown sugar
5 eggs
1.5 cup of flour
1/3 cups of self raising flour
1-2 tsp of mixed spice

1) Marinate fruits with DOM for 5 days.

2) Lined square cake pan and preheat oven to 160C.

3) Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs slowly. Fold in sifted flours and mixed spice.

4) Add 1-2 tablespoons of flour to the marinated fruits and mixed well. This will prevent the fruits from sinking.

5) Fold fruits into flour mixture and spoon to cake pan.

6) Bake for 2-3 hours (Mine was done in 2 hrs!). Cool.

7) Slice and serve with some custard orrrr… cherries!! =)

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! =)


My Grown up Christmas List

Do you remember me? I sat upon your knee
I wrote to you with all childhood fantasies
Well, I’m all grown up now and still need help somehow
I’m not a child but my heart still can dream

So here’s my lifelong wish
My grown up Christmas List
not for myself
But for a world in need

Chorus* No more lives torn apart That wars would never start and time would heal all hearts And everyone would have a friend and right would always win and Love would never end, no This is my grown up Christmas List

As children we believe
The grandest sight to see
Was something lovely wrapped beneath a tree
But heaven only knows
That packages and bows
Can never heal a heart ached human soul

Repeat *

What is this illusion
Called the innocence of youth
Maybe only in our blind belief
Can we ever find the truth

Repeat *

4 Days to Christmas- Christmas Cookies and Dark Chocolate Turkish Macademia Rocky Road

Last year this time, I participated in FoodBlogga’s Christmas Cookie event-baking cookies for our engagement party as an entry. This year, I decided to write about little goodie bags that I have prepared for our friends and neighbours.


The first item in the goodie bag feature a Christmas cookie (duh!). Thanks to Ruth-my best friend from SG who kindly forwarded a cookie cookbook (Gorgeous Biscuits from Periplus Mini cookbooks) as a surprise gift for my birthday earlier this year. Using the basic cookie recipe, I cut the dough up using some Christmas cutters given to be by Singairishgirl and her little girl! Thanks dears!! Then I sandwiched these giant cookies with some caramel or peppermint icing.

The rocky road was inspired by the Australian Women’s Weekly. Who can resist the combination of turkish delight, dark chocolate and roasted cinnamon macadamia nuts? I can’t. It is a slight twist from your usual coconut chocolate rocky road but certainly as rich if not richer. Small amounts of these is potent.

Christmas Cookies

Basic Biscuits
250grams soften butter
3/4 cup of caster sugar
2 eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups flour
2 cups of self-raising flour.

1) Preheat Oven to 160C. Line baking trays.

2) Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla and beat till well combined. Fold in flours to form a soft dough.

3) Turn dough into a sheet of baking paper and cover with another sheet. Roll out to 5mm thick.. using biscuit cutters, cut out shapes and place on trays. Bake for around 10-15 minutes. Cool on tray before placing on wire rack. Cool completely before icing.

Peppermint Icing
2 cups of icing sugar
5-6 tsp of hot water
1 tsp or less of peppermint essence.

Sift icing. Add hot water and essence and stir well. The filling will be runny but stiff enough to be spreadable.

Caramel Filling
30 grams butter
1/2 cup of brown sugar
1/2 cup condensed milk

Place all in a pan and bring to a boil. Boil for 1 minute till mixture thickens. Cool then spread on biscuit! Sandwich them =)

Dark Chocolate Turkish Delight Roasted Macadamia Rocky Road


500 grams dark chocolate
350 grams rose almond Turkish delight-chopped
250 grams marshmallows-chopped
150 grams of cinnamon roasted macadamia nuts crushed

1) Melt chocolate over pot of boiling water. Fold in Turkish delight, marshmallows and macadamia nuts. Spread on lined trays. Fridge for 2 hrs or so. Serve with hot coffee! =)


Thanks to Foodblogga who is hosting the Christmas Cookie Event!

6 Days to Christmas- Olive OIl Nutmeg White Choc Cookies


For some reason, that looked like a scary smiley face. An oxymoron but it’s true! I’m a big cookie junkie. I collect cookie recipes and love them to bits and pieces. Especially the easy ones that require little effort!

I’m always keeping my eyes and ears open with regards to cookie recipes that require quick mixing. This one was taken from Better Homes and Garden-one of my favourite magazines. I know! It makes me sound so much older isnt it? But I love their recipes!

So if you are looking for something easier to make to finish off the Christmas Dinner or a meal… this recipe may be one for you. I like the hint of spice in there.. but feel free to use cinnamon or even mixed spice if you like.


Olive Oil Nutmeg White Choc Cookies (around 40)
1/2 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup olive oil
1 egg
1 egg ylk
1-2 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup of self raising flour
1 cup of plain flour
1-2 tsp of ground nutmeg
handful of white chocolate.

1) Preheat Oven to 180C. Line baking trays with baking paper.

2) Whisk sugar, egg, egg yolk, oil and vanilla extract till thickened. (U can use an electric mixer but I chose to train my biceps…..arghhh..).

3) Fold in flours and mix till well combined.

4) Roll tsps of mixture and flatten using your hand. Press a few white chocolates onto the cookies. Bake for 15 minutes till golden. Cool then transfer to wire rack.

7 Days to Christmas- Seafood Mee Sua


One week to Christmas-what kind of Christmas will you be having?

Well, last Christmas I had my two fantastic friends over to celebrate the occasion with us. On top of that, they also attended our engagement party. These friends knew that I wasn’t able to head back to my family as I was desperately trying to finish writing up my thesis then.

Nearly one year has passed, and……. I finally received the reports from the University that I passed!!!! =)

Oh what a bittersweet feeling. All these while, I have not relaxed with the uncertainty of not knowing what exactly will happen when the reports come back. But with God’s blessing- the examiners gave me excellent feedback, much better than I ever expected.

It has been a huge 2008- While it felt like a short year, certainly when I looked back, lots of things and events have happened. In a way, I felt that this year has been productive.

So in true celebration fashion, I present to you a Mee Sua dish! Ok, so Mee Sua is often a dish cooked on Birthdays or Chinese New Year… but this is a type of celebration right? =)


Seafood Mee Sua (serves 4-5)
1/2 packet of Mee Sua
2-3 cups of stock
seafood mixture of your choice (I used 100 grams squid, 50 grams baby scallops and prawns)
Spinach leaves-2-3 cups
1 chilli chopped
a tablespoon of minced garlic

Seasoning
pepper
salt
1/2 cup of Hua Tiao Jiu
1 tablespoon of soya
1 tsp of maggi seasoning

1) Quickly blanched Mee Sua and set aside.

2) In a wok, heat up a tablespoon of oil till very hot. Quickly fry garlic till golden brown and add seafood. When it is cooked, add the stock and simmer. Add all vegetables. Add seasoning and simmer for another 5-10 minutes.

3) Last 5 minutes of cooking, add Mee Sua in for it to absorb the flavours! Serve with another dash of pepper.

I hope I’m not too late for Pasta Presto hosted by Foodie Tots and founded by Ruth from Once Upon a Feast! Come join in the fun!

9 Days to Christmas- Tuna and Egg Toasties with Muruku Salad

I like my carbs. Especially when they come in the form of fresh bread. Toasties are one of my favourite form of lunches-there is something heart warming about fresh bread and fillings that make brunches/lunches enjoyable. 

Looking back, egg sandwiches are what I know how to make first. I can still vividly recall the steps my mum taught me. This time round, I added some pistachio nuts for the added crunch. 

Growing up, I love Ayam brand chili tuna! In fact, I don’t think I ate other forms of tuna than that for many years.. until I discover other brands of chili tuna that does not have added oil in it. Still, if you ask me what is the best can of tuna-I would have to say Ayam brand! It certainly gives you the kick of spicyness. 

My love for spinach leaves can be seen (again!) here! But I was really bored with my salads that day and then decided to add a handful of muruku!! Not the healthest decision (And probably show how much I like eating them!) but it is certainly a tasty one. LOL 

Tuna and Egg Toasties with Muruku Salad

Tuna Toasties

1 can of chili tuna

 handful of cashew nuts

cheese

Turkish Bread

Egg Toasties

1 egg boiled, mashed and mixed with dijon mayo, salt, pepper

handful of pistachios

Turkish bread

Asemble sandwiches and toast them! =) 

NB: The last weekend was my uncle’s wedding…. hence the reason for the lack of posting! But to show how small Perth really is.. look who I bumped into that evening!!

That’s right! He is Samuel from Yummy Dummy!!! 

14 Days to Christmas

Oh my! TWO weeks more to Christmas. Have you finished your Christmas cards yet? Well, I haven’t! ahhhhh….

Our Christmas tree is up and running with little presents underneath it. I can’t wait to see AR’s nieces and nephews to open them!

I have always raved about how versatile pasta is. This time round, I stirfried pasta with some mushrooms and chicken sausages. Add a beaten egg and tadah, a quick meal is formed. Took me less than 25 minutes to assemble dinner.

Stir Fry Black Pepper Sausages Pasta (serves 4)
250 grams pasta
1 tsp of garlic
1-2 tablespoons of black pepper
3 chicken sausages chopped
1-2 cups of mushrooms
1 egg

1) Cook pasta in boiling water. Drain.

2) Heat wok till very hot. Quickly stir fry garlic in pan till golden brown. Add chicken sausages and cook till done. Add mushrooms. Include in the pasta and then sauce. Add in beaten egg. Serve!


Sharing this with Presto Pasta founded by Ruth from Once Upon a Feast. This week, Baking Delights is hosting.

15 Days to Christmas- Peanut Butter Oaty Choc Chips Cookies

How can anyone resist the combination of peanut butter and chocolate? This recipe was adapted some time ago from various bloggers participating in TWD. Certainly the use of peanut butter and chocolate caught my attention.

I was expecting these little babies to be a little more fudgey. Still, I love how it crumbles in my mouth. Once you start eating it, it’s hard to stop.

The other thing I did was to shape it in tinier portions. That may be a mistakes because I probably ended up eating a few more than I should!!!

Chunky Peanut Butter and Oatmeal Chocolate Chipsters
From Dorie Greenspan
3 Cups of old fashioned oats
1 cup of flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp of mixed spice (or nutmeg)
1/4 tsp salt
260 grams of butter
1 cup of chunky peanut butter
1/2 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1.5 cups of dark choc chips

1) Preheat oven to 180C. Line baking trays.

2) Mix flour, oats, baking soda, spices and salt.

3) Whisk butter, peanut butter, sugar till smooth and creamy. Add eggs one at a time, followed by vanilla. Fold in flour. Mix in choc chips.

4) Chill dough for around 2 hrs.

5) Roll dough into small balls, flatten it with your palm and place them on the baking trays. Bake 15 minutes. Cool and lift them onto baking racks.

16 Days to Christmas- Spicy Fish Tortillas


My grandma is in Perth!!

yes! The grandma who offers great food and lovely smiles!!

Oh so excited to see her.

Meanwhile, enjoy these spicy fish tortillas-A different touch from the usual ones. =)



Spicy Fish Tortillas (serve 2)

3 Tortillas
3 pieces of white fish (I used snapper)
chili, cumin, Moroccan spices
cracked pepper

mayo
spinach leaves
dukkah

1) Marinate fish with spices. Grill each side for 3 minutes.

2) Toast Tortillas. Assemble by placing a slice of fish and some spinach leaves. Drizzle with mayo!

17 Days to Christmas- Grilled Salmon with Moroccan Couscous Salad


Remember my love for salmon? Seafood is always a hit in this household. I never like to place lots of seasoning on salmon (Until my visit to Marion bay!!)-prefer to keep it as simple as possible. I prefer it with skin on but I know lots of ppl who prefers it off (smell? texture?hmm..)

The great thing about Salmon is that it keeps you full. I don’t know what it is but I find that I feel full quicker having salmon than roast! Odd huh?

This time round, I made a simple couscous salad to accompany the grilled salmon. Dinner in less than 25 minutes!

Grilled Salmon with Moroccan Couscous Salad (Serves 2)
2 pieces of salmon
1 packet of Moroccan Couscous
Boccini cheese (around 6 pieces)
chopped up half a capscium
1 baby egg plant chopped

1) Lightly season salmon with salt, pepper, 1 tsp of chili powder and 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

2) Preheat grill to very hot. Quickly grill vegetables first. Set it aside.

3) Grill salmon on each side for just under 4-5 minutes (I like the middle of the salmon pink).

4) Prepare couscous according to packet instructions. Add grilled vegetables.

5) Serve with salmon!!

20 Days to Christmas! Olive Oil Chocolate Strawberry Cake

Perhaps you are looking at something light for dessert. How about a chocolate cake made out of olive oil rather than butter? I adapted this recipe from recipezaar to incorporate the fruit ofthe season- strawberries. It’s also good for ppl with a dairy free diet.

Despite not using butter, the cake turned out moist. My only concern is that it uses 5 eggs-that’s alot for a small cake!


Olive Oil Chocolate Strawberry Cake
5 extra large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extra
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup of flour
2 tablespoons of cocoa
1/2 cup of olive oil
1/2 cup of boiling water

1 punnet of strawberries halves

1) Sift all dry ingredients together except the sugar. Beat eggs and sugar till thick and almost double in volume. Add in vanilla extract.

2) Fold dry ingredients into egg mixture. Pour half the batter in 9 inch prepared round cake tin. Place strawberries on it. Pour the other half of the batter into tin.

3) Bake for 40 minutes. Cool and dust with icing sugar!