Sunday, March 31, 2013

Coconut Cherry Brownies

I don't think I ever made Brownies from scratch but only from box mixes and everytime I did that, it always failed! It was either burnt or hard as a rock and I have no idea why. Melting chocolate is not a thing I like to do and so I put off ever making Brownie for any occasion.

That was until this Easter, I was short of time to prepare any dessert for my Easter dinner party and wanted something simple. And I found this lovely Recipe, much to my delight that uses Cocoa powder and no chocolate melting required. I reduced the sugar to 350g and the coconut to 50g while adding about 75g chopped Morello cherries from Trader Joe's to the batter. Maraschino cherries can be used if Morello is not available. The most important thing to observe in this recipe is when the beaten eggs are added to the warm cocoa and butter mixture. First, temper the eggs by pouring slowly some of the cocoa mixture into the eggs and quickly stir to avoid coagulation or scrambled egg mess. And pour this egg mixture into the cocoa mixture to combine thoroughly.
This Brownie tasted great, moist and dense. The coconut didn't overpower the richness of the cocoa taste and the cherries added a slight tart bite. Definitely a keeper recipe and a great treat to bake for anyone, anytime.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Bento Lunches for March 2013

It is quite hard to kick myself back into cooking and baking mode again. Not that I was not cooking all this while but to create something out of the norm takes a bit of brainstorming these days. Or rather, my attention has shifted too much to sewing and there is just not much to entice me to spend time in the kitchen. I used to be able to multi-task but ever since I moved house to my current location and loaded with the kids activities and homework almost everyday, I kind of gave up on some of my interests without realising it! Life is moving on very fast these days and I feel that I am trying to catch up with the days, literally.

To start with, I went back to making Bento lunches for my kids this month. Bento lunches first caught my eyes when I was in Japan long time ago and it was the first type of food cooking and presentation that got me into writing and documenting my culinary journey in this Blog. Through it, I learned to use different ingredients and also introduced more healthier eating to my kids. It is indeed a very uplifting feeling to be able to put different food and ingredients into a small box and present it. Like Forrest Gump said "Life is like a box of Chocolates, you never know what you are going to get". Taking out the Chocolates, I think Bento is that fun and surprising too!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

2013 and Things to come

X'mas 2012 and New Year 2013 celebrations have all passed! What have I been doing away from my Blogs? I have not much recollection except the winter was harsh with so much snow that I couldn't find my Buried Shovel at times, and with weather going all down to -15'C, there wasn't much fun happening at my end. Every New Year, I make one wish of many Wishes that I always secretly hope.... the Winter months of January and February will go by so quickly that infact I am thankful that February has only 28 days! Although 12 years and counting living here in the States, my relationship with Every Winter season is just as slushy as the melting snow... all murky and nothing to love about!

As I write my first post here, I confess that I thought of ending the writing of my Blogs. When I first started, I didn't have alot of things going on for me except taking care of kids and their diapers and till today I still pick up their clothes littered everywhere in their rooms! And so, cooking, baking and blogging about it made the days more easy going. As the years pass, my energy and brain power are diverted or rather divided up everywhere and the attention to this blog wavered. Even my baking skills went down a bit. 

Anyhow, having moved to a bigger kitchen now, I guess I should do better and not let all my previous effort of writing and photography go to waste. Not mentioning my cookbooks collection. And also all the lovely people who constantly comes back looking and emailing me to discuss about recipes and ingredients. There are so many cakes that I haven't tried out yet and so many dishes that I want to create and I just hope Spring 2013 gives me the determination and inspiration to create and post again.

All the best to everyone in 2013!