Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Macaron de Paris... Attempt # 1

Bonjour everyone! For the past few days, I've been thinking of facing my fear of macarons again. I had a short stint working in a pastry shop a long long time ago, and I used to make macarons.

It wasn't an easy dessert at all; I remember the butterflies in my tummy every time I make a batch of them. The stare of anxiety I gave towards the oven... sigh... those were the days. It took me a lot of practice before I was able to make them consistently good. Even so, I never gained the confidence that I have conquered the techniques in making macarons.

So for today's attempt.... Voila!

I know I know, that's not a macaron! :p It was a disaster. If you notice, I only took a picture of the one that is close to looking like a macaron :p The rest may send you with nightmares if I took photos :p

Anyway, that was my first attempt after years of not making them. I am determined to get this right. Hence, I bought extra ingredients for expected series of attempts ;)

Bisou bisou,

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Curry in a Hurry

So another non-dessert post... :) I was craving for seafood curry recently. So the other night I've decided to make prawn curry for dinner...
I opted to be a bit creative with this one. Instead of having the usual plain rice, prawns and curry sauce, I made curried rice with garlic prawns :p It turned out really good!:) H loved it too :) So another recipe for keeps for our dinner menu ;)
Bisou bisou,

Saturday, 20 March 2010

The Birthday Cake - Chocolate Mousse with Hazelnut Burnt Cream Center

So it was my H's birthday a few days ago... Made some absolutely to-die-for brownies for his colleagues. Then made his cake - heavenly gorgeous Chocolate Mousse with Hazelnut Burnt Cream. It was simply amazing! I have to say, I'm quite proud of what I was able to make! :D My H loved the cake so much! The combination of the flavour of this cake is gorgeous and the texture is as light as a cloud! :)

So for the components for this delectable sweet, we'll need to make:

1. Dacquoise

1/8 c almond powder
1/8 c powdered sugar
1 1/2 t all purpose flour
1 pc egg white
2 1/4 t sugar

  • Combine the almond powder, powdered sugar and flour. Set aside.
  • Beat the egg white close to soft peak then add in the sugar. Continue beating until you see peaks forming.
  • Fold in the almond powder mixture.
  • Transfer to a lined 4 inch round pan.
  • Bake at a preheated 340 F oven for 15 mins. or until it's golden brown in color.

2. Hazelnut Burnt Cream
* This is like a hazelnut flavoured creme brulee. It's so delicious, you could eat it on it's own!

1/2 c heavy cream
1/3 c milk
8 t hazelnut paste (ground 1/2 c hazelnuts + 1 T corn oil)
2 T sugar
3 pcs egg yolks

  • Warm up the heavy cream and milk.
  • Add the hazelnut paste.
  • In another bowl, whisk the sugar and yolks until smooth. Then add it into the warm cream mixture.
  • Strain the mixture into a baking dish.
  • Bake in a preheated 210 F oven for 30 minutes or until set like a creme brulee.

3. Chocolate Mousse
* I used a mousse recipe that doesn't use gelatin. I think not having gelatin in a mousse makes it super light. Hence, this cake is not filling or heavy to the tummy at all! :)

3 pcs egg yolks
4 T sugar
3 T water
175 g chocolate (melted to 95 F)
1 1/4 c heavy cream

  • Whip the heavy cream then set aside in the refrigerator.
  • Whip the egg yolks until pale in color or three times it's original volume.
  • Cook the sugar and water in a pot until it's temperature is 250 F.
  • Still whipping the yolks, add the sugar syrup into the yolks on a steady stream. Continue whipping until the mixture cools down.
  • Fold in the melted chocolate.
  • Then quickly fold in the whipped cream.
* This recipe produced more than what I needed for a 6 inch ring mold. So I think just using 2/3 of this recipe would be enough :)

4. Ganache Ingredients:
150 ml heavy cream
187 g chocolate

  • Heat the heavy cream.
  • Pour the heated cream onto the chocolate.
  • Mix until it's combined.
  • Let cool until desired consistency.
**** All recipes (except for the ganache recipe) were adapted from
Le Cordon Bleu Dessert Techniques :)

So after preparing all the components, we can now start to assemble!:)

  1. Slice the dacquoise into two equal disks.
  2. Place one disk at the bottom of the ring mold (seal the bottom of the mold with foil).
  3. Cover with mousse.
  4. Scoop in the hazelnut burnt cream.
  5. Cover with mousse. - Place the second disk.
  6. Cover with remaining mousse, then cover with foil.
  7. Freeze until set. 
Once it's set, we can now glaze the cake :)

  1. You can unmold the mousse by wiping the ring with a warm cloth. The mousse will then slowly glide out the ring mold. Make sure to unmold onto a wire rack:)
  2. Once umold, you can now pour the ganache all over the mousse.
  3. Then decorate as you wish! :D ** As for my cake, I placed roasted hazelnuts around the cake then I wrote "Happy Birthday Love!" on the center with yellow icing sugar :)
I tried to take a good picture of the cake once it was sliced to show you the layers. Unfortunately, I'm not a photographer. So I hope my shots would be good enough :p

I'm really happy to how this cake came out, and how much my H loved his cake! :D Of course there's still lots of rooms for improvement! :) My chocolate mousse is still far from perfect, but with baby steps, I'm getting there. :p Then of course details... have to master all these, then one time in the far future, I will become a self-proclaimed pastry chef **dream** !:p
Bisou bisou,

Friday, 19 March 2010

Fudgy Treat

It was my husband's birthday a few days ago...
So as to give his colleagues a small treat, we've decided for me to make brownies. :)
This brownies went down a treat! Everyone loved it!
It's really fudgy
and I also glazed a very rich chocolate ganache on top! :)
Birthday = cake.
So of course I also made a very special cake for his day, which I'll post soon.
Probably tomorrow or later tonight :) But I'll give you a sneak preview by ending this post with a picture of the cake :)
More pictures on my next post! ;)
Bisou bisou,

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Chocolate Chip Hazelnut Cookies

After three rough baking moments, I'm finally back on track! :D To be honest, I was a bit anxious baking again so I opt for something basic.


Chocolate Chip Hazelnut Cookies :)

It's really delicious. I love the combination of chocolate and hazelnuts. This cookie has the perfect texture! Crunchy on the outside, but soft and moist inside.

I love dipping these cookies in a hot cuppa milk-tea or coffee; the hazelnuts infuses its flavour onto the drink. So lovely! :)

P.S. Can someone help me with this blog? All my pictures are loading up vertically :-s

Bisou bisou,

Sunday, 7 March 2010

The Flan Plan

Ok, so I said I might do cookies for comfort, but I changed my mind.
I have loads of egg yolks stocked up on my fridge,
hence I decided to make Creme Caramel.

Ugh... Do you guys believe that bad luck comes in three?

Well I sort of do. First, the shortbread cookies -- the amount of cookies the recipe said it was suppose to yield didn't exactly transpire AND I overbaked them. Then there was the pavlova -- for some reason the meringe kept on flopping, and mind you I have done this recipe for like six times in the past and was always successful. Lastly, this Creme Caramel...

Everything was going right until I inverted the pan. Quarter of the flan came out a mess...
Anyway, I hope this is the END of bad lucks... So cross fingers on my next baking!

Bisou bisou,

Thursday, 4 March 2010

Flop of a Pavlova

Hiya guys.. Had a couple of downer days recently.
I was going to make a Chocolate Pavlova with Strawberries, but I couldn't get the pavlova right.
Instead of having a fluffy meringue, I always end up with a meringue disk looking pav...
I attempted to get the pav right about five times in the span of three days...all flops! It's so depressing...
In the process of baking they always seem to be puffing up nicely but on the cooling down period, they all just flopped! ~
I've made this recipe several times before, and I have always found this as an easy dessert... So I don't know what made my attempts such failure this time around.
So for this week, I produced nothing...
Anyway, I might make some comforting cookies to make myself feel better this weekend :)
Bisou bisou,


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