Sunday, March 31, 2013

Five Spice Apple Turnovers

Finally made these apple turnovers with the balanced short-crust pastry :) Nowadays there are so many varieties of apple to choose from! It is not necessary to get Granny Smith for its tartness and crunchiness. I uses Royal Gala which has similar tartness, very crunchy which won't turn mushy after cooking and has additional sweetness too!

Five Spice Apple Fillings

Before baking...

After baking...

dust with some icing sugar and serve!

Apple Fillings
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp cornflour
  • 3 Royal Gala apples, peeled & diced
  • 15gm butter
  • 1.5 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla paste
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/4 tsp chinese five spice
  • short crust pastry
  • milk for glazing


  1. Mix the water, lemon juice, and cornstarch together in a small bowl until cornstarch is fully incorporated (no clumps). Add this mixture to the rest of the ingredients and mix all together. Heat a skillet on medium heat, and cook the apples for about 20-25 minutes or until the apples are as soft as you’d like them.
  2. Allow the apple preserves to cool to room temperature.
  3. Cut the puff pastry into 5 equal squares. Place some apple fillings onto each pastry square and fold over to form a rectangle. Use a fork to crimp the edges so that the pastry stays closed. Cut 2 or 3 slits over the top of of each pastry. Assemble the turnovers evenly on a lined baking sheet, glaze with milk and bake for 12-15 minutes at 200 deg cel. 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Free and Easy Bake-Along #41 : Rustic Strawberry Turnovers

After yesterday savoury turnovers, lets try some sweet turnovers today! I've some strawberries in the chiller, therefore decided make some strawberry turnovers instead of the usual apples one :) Puff pastry again? NO! I've no guts to hands-on puff pastry, so I used a shortbread pastry dough recipe hehehe...Joyce of Kitchen Flavours also uses a shortbread pastry dough for her turnovers , but I did not refer to her recipe. I used another shortbread pastry dough which made up with an egg. This shortbread pastry dough is not easy to work with either! Generous in flouring the work surface and the dough helps a lot and speed too! By the time I work with the 5th turnovers the pastry has softened, do not want to waste time chilling the dough again, I just added more flour and roll it out :P 

Anyway the title of this recipe is RUSTIC strawberry turnovers, so nevermind of its appearance hahaha....oh goodness these turnovers are really fantastic! ^.* The sweetness of the fillings is just right and the pastry is so flaky, thin & buttery! I've savored 2 of the turnovers, and trying to stop myself for having more if not dear son will not have any snack to bring to school tomorrow!! 

P.S : oh I still have another 1/2 portion of the pastry dough in chiller, maybe I will try out apple fillings next! ^.^

this is how it looks before baking...

roll out slightly, wrapped & chilled...

floured work top generously, rolled out & cut out pastry...

wrapped with filling, glazed and sprinkle with sugar, ready to go into oven!

Recipe source : pb&
Shortbread Pastry Dough
Ingredient (enough for 10 turnovers)
  • 240gm plain flour
  • 200gm unsalted butter, chilled & cut into 1" pieces
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp salt

Strawberries Fillings : combine all ingredients together (makes 5 turnovers)
  • 4 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tbsp plain flour
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 cup sliced fresh strawberries
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 2 tbsp demarara sugar 

  1. Combine flour, sugar & salt together. Toss in cubed butter and rub into flour with fingertips till breadcrumbs like formed. Add in milk & egg and gather together till a dough is formed. Not necessary to knead.
  2. Divide pastry into half, approx 250gm each. Pat each portion into 1" thick and wrap in plastic, chill for at least 30min until firm enough to be rolled out.
  3. Floured a work surface generously. Using a floured rolling pin, roll out the pastry (dust pastry with some flour also). Cut the dough into 5 rounds, each about 4.5" in diameter. With the help of a scraper, transfer the cut pastry onto a lined baking sheet.
  4. Put 5-6 slices of strawberries on one half of each pastry. Carefully fold the other side of the dough over the berries to make a half moon. Press down the edges of the dough with a fork.
  5. Repeat process with the remaining pastry dough and strawberries. Chill for 15 mins.
  6. Preheat oven to 180 deg cel. Brush the turnovers with some milk and sprinkle some demararer sugar. Bake for 25mins until golden brown. Cool on rack.   Serve warm or at room temperature.

 can't wait to savour it!

 is real good! thin, buttery & flaky!!

I'm submitting this post to Bake Along event hosted by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours, Lena of Frozen Wings & Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Free and Easy Bake-Along #41 : Tuna & Potatoes Turnover

Oh so cute! ^.^ 

too cute to be eaten??!! hehehe no cross-sectioned for this puff as I do not want to show its disfigured picture Lol...

While browsing for inspirations on turnovers, I found this site which has wonderful recipes for turnovers!! Making puff pastry from scratch? hehehe I'm not confident to do that for now!! Make from frozen puff pastry is easy peasy to come out with instant delicious puff pastry any time! After rolling out the thawed pastry, I only managed to get 2 huge cute turnovers as my cookie cutters are rather huge which you can see from the picture below....approx 10-12cm for both width and length. 

Tuna & Potato Fillings

Glaze and ready to pop into oven!

 Recipe source :
  • 1 russet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 1 hard boiled egg, cubed
  • 50gm can tuna in olive oil, drained & reserved 1 tbsp of the oil
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 pack thawed store bought puff pastry
  • beaten egg yolk for glazing

  1. Steam cubed potatoes over preheated steamer for 15mins until tender. Transfer to a mixing bowl.
  2. Toss in hard boiled egg, tuna and oil, parsley evenly. Add salt & pepper to taste.
  3. Roll out pastry on a lightly floured surface. Cut out pastry using a large cookie cutter or cut into squares. Transfer pastry to a lined baking sheet.
  4. Brush some egg yolk on the outer edge of the pastry. Spoon some fillings in the middle and cover with another piece of pastry. Seal the edge with a fork. Glaze surface with egg yolk.
  5. Bake in preheated oven at 200 deg cel for 15 mins until golden brown. Cool slightly before serving.

I'm submitting this post to Bake Along event hosted by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours, Lena of Frozen Wings & Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


This is another dish which I only cooked once way back in 2008! This time I attempt again using happy call pan!! I've actually tried quite a number of dishes using happy call pan but yet to post them up!! 

step 2

 step 3

 step 5

  • 500gm pork belly (五花肉)
  • 50gm ginger, sliced
  • 2 tbsp corn oil
  • 2 tbsp chinese wine
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tsp dark soy sauce
  • 200ml water
  • 5 tsp sugar

  1. Clean pork belly thoroughly and place in a pot of water, bring to boil. Skim away foam, boil for 15mins. Remove and place in a pot of icy cold water for 10mins. Drain away water and slice into bite sizes.
  2. Heat up oil in a happy call pan. Pan-fry ginger until brown & fragrant. Add sliced pork and stir-fry for 5mins on medium high heat.
  3. Add wine and soy sauce and stir to mix evenly. Add water to submerge the pork. Cover and bring to boil.
  4. Add 2 tsp of sugar, stir evenly, covered and braised for 15mins on medium heat. Open lid and stir evenly and braised another 15mins with pan covered.
  5. Liquid should reduce by now, add another 3 tsp sugar. Covered and braised for another 5mins.
  6. Turn on high heat and stir fry until sauce is thick. Remove from heat and serve.

Chicken Shepherd's Pie

My hubby is not a fan of beef, therefore instead of traditional shepherd's pie which made up with beef, I substitute with minced chicken.  Glad that this pie turns out great, the mashed potato is creamy and the meat filling is moist enough and not dry. My boy even finished one whole pie! :)

  • 400gm minced chicken
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 50gm green peas
  • 50gm corn kernels
  • 4 tbsp thick teriyaki sauce
  • 3 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • salt n pepper to taste
  • 5 large potato
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 50gm butter

  1. Marinate minced chicken with teriyaki sauce, tomato sauce, salt and pepper for 30mins.
  2. Heat up oil. Stir-fry onion until soft and fragrance. Add minced chicken and fry for 3min. Add green peas and corn kernels and mix evenly. Remove from fire. Place mixture evenly into 6 ramekins. 
  3. Peel potato and steam until tender. Mash while still hot.
  4. Stir in milk and butter and lightly season with some salt & pepper to taste. Spread mashed potato on top of minced chicken.
  5. Grill in hot oven for 12 mins until golden brown and mixture is bubbly. 

Udon with Shimeiji Mushroom in Miso Sauce

This is another light and simple just for the kids and me :) and yes these 3 dishes are cooked in happy call pan :) hehehe is really really very efficient using this pan as I did not wash pan after cooking each dish. Firstly I pan-fried the salmon, with residue oil in pan I used that to saute the sugar peas and lastly stir-frying the udon. I think the whole process only took me less than 15 mins! 

Ingredient (enough for 2 kids and 1 adult)
  • 1 package udon, 200gm
  • 150gm shimeiji mushrooms
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 stalk spring onion, sliced
Miso Sauce (mix)
  • 2 tsp miso paste
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • dash of pepper
  • 4 tbsp water from soaked shitake mushrooms

  1. Cut off the base of shimeiji mushroom. Separate mushroom and rinse lightly if necessary.
  2. Cook udon in boiling water for 1 min. Drain away water.
  3. Heat oil in a saucepan. Saute garlic until fragrant. Add in mushroom and stir fry briefly.
  4. Add in miso sauce and cook for a minute. 
  5. Stir in udon and cook briefly. Remove from fire.
  6. Garnish with spring onion and serve immediately.

 Pan-fry salmon lightly seasoned with salt & black pepper

Simple '豆苗' Sugar Pea in garlic & low sodium soy sauce

Soboro Donburi

I simply love this Japanese style rice meal! Fast and easy to whip up on busy days! The colour combination is rather attractive too, don't you think so? :)

Recipe ref Just One Cookbook & Christine's Recipe

  • 250gm calrose rice, cook according to package
  • 250gm minced chicken
  • 3 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp mirin
  • 1 tbsp rice wine
  • 2 tsp freshly grated ginger
  • 3 eggs
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • handful of green peas
  • toasted sesame seeds
  • japanese seaweed for garnish

  1. Marinate minced chicken with soy sauce, mirin, rice wine & ginger for 30 mins.
  2. Heat 1 tbsp oil in pan, add minced chicken and fry on medium heat until cooked through. Set aside.
  3. Whisk egg with some salt & pepper. Cook in lightly grease pan and scrambled. Set aside.
  4. Scoop some rice into serving bowl. Place some scrambled eggs, cooked minced chicken onto rice. Garnish with sesame seeds, green peas & seaweed. Serve at once!

mix it up and ready to dig in!! hehehe

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Kinpira Rice Burger

Do you like MOS Burger? I do! Especially their rice burger :) It is not difficult to replicate one at home!   

Stir-fry Burdock & Carrots

Burdock to peel this root? Instead of using a peeler, make use the tip of a medium stainless spoon and scrub of the skin, nice and clean and prevent any wastage :)

Burdock & Carrot Kinpira
  • 350gm burdock, peeled & shredded and soak in water
  • 150gm carrot, shredded
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 100ml rice wine
  • 50ml light soya sauce
  • 2 tbsp rock sugar
  • 2 tbsp toasted white sesame seeds

  1. Rinse soaked burdock till water runs clear. This will helps to remove any bitterness.
  2. Heat sesame oil in a pan, add burdock and stir fry for 3 mins until fragrant.
  3. Add in carrot and stir fry for another min.
  4. Add in rice wine, soy sauce and sugar and bring to boil.
  5. Stir fry till mixture is almost dry up and the vege are tender.
  6. Stir in sesame seeds and mix evenly.

Rice patties in cling wrap

Rice Burger
Ingredient (8 patties)
  • 2 cups calrose rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp low sodium light soy sauce
  • white sesame seeds for garnishing

  1. Rinse and drain rice well. Add water and steam over preheated steamer till thoroughly cook through.
  2. With a chopstick, fluff up rice and cool down the rice.
  3. Divide rice into even 8 portions. Place a portion over a piece of cling wrap. With the help of the cling wrap, shape the rice into round and flatten to compact it. Make sure it is real compact if not it will break up easily.
  4. Repeat with the balance of the rice portions. Sprinkle white sesame seeds on 4 rice patties and press down lightly.
  5. Lightly grease a non-stick pan.
  6. Brush some soy sauce over one side of the rice patty. Place it over heated pan and cook over medium heat till golden brown. Repeat with the other side.
  7. To serve : Place a rice patty on a serving plate, lay a sheet of nori seaweed follow by a spoonful of  burdock & carrot kinpira, layer another sheet of nori seaweed and top with another rice patty. Serve immediately.

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