Truffled Scrambled Eggs

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TRUFFLED-UP SCRAMBLED EGGS | Soft heavenly ricotta-like texture with a touch of gourmet.

Crazy about eggs? Especially those creamy and soft scrambled eggs that slip off your spoon into your mouth?

The secret here is cooking the eggs low and slow — low heat, plus plenty of time for soft eggy curds to gradually form.

Yes, I know patience may not jive well with a busy morning weekday schedule before work but trust me, 10-15 minutes is worth your time once you taste the sensation of these eggs. If I am going to make scramble eggs, this is how I will do them. No compromise.

What’s the trick? Simply cook the eggs in a regular saute pan over the lowest heat you can manage on your stove. Please resist the temptation to nudge the dial up. As the eggs start to cook, stir occasionally to mix the cooked eggs on bottom with the still-runny eggs on top, and let the eggs form into billowy curds at their own pace.

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Ingredients:

TIME: 10 mins | YIELDS: one 

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon of black truffle paste
  • Chopped green onions or chives for garnish
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Method:

  1. Turn stove on lowest heat setting. Heat pan with a tablespoon of olive oil.
  2. In meantime, lightly beat eggs in a bowl with a dash of salt and pepper. truffled-scrambled-eggs-1-of-6
  3. Pour whisked eggs into pan and gently fold continuously. truffled-scrambled-eggs-2-of-6
  4. Once egg forms set curds, add the teaspoon of black truffle paste.truffled-scrambled-eggs-3-of-6
  5. Remove pan from stove and dish eggs onto a plate (remember, eggs still cook when removed from stove). Garnish with chopped spring onions or chives before serving.truffled-scrambled-eggs-4-of-6

Coffee Pecan Financiers

Coffee and pecan financiers (23 of 39)

A PERFECT CONCOCTION | Pecans, ground sumiyaki coffee powder and a shot of nespresso add subtle warm undertones to the traditional financier.  

I love how baking brings out the perfectionist streak lurking deep within me. This Valentine’s day, me and my (single) girlfriends decided we’d get our hands dirty and do some baking.

To challenge ourselves, we set an ambitious goal to master the basic vanilla soufflé (which we managed to achieve). I also added another to our baking agenda for the afternoon  – to recreate Ottolenghi’s famed Coffee Pecan Financiers that sells likes hotcakes at his restaurant NOPI in London.

Coffee and pecan financiers (1 of 1)

Still missing Paris a lot, I was keen to make financiers again, but this time, I was set on making an adaptation of Ottolenghi’s Coffee Pecan Financiers from his well-known restaurant NOPI. Not too fond of anything too sweet, I reduced the icing sugar quantity by half and did away with the coffee pecan cream that often accompanies these little bars of gold.

Coffee and pecan financiers (29 of 39)

Coffee and Pecan Financiers

TIME: one hour | YIELDS: Makes 12 financiers

INGREDIENTS:

  • 100g pecans
  • 150g unsalted butter
  • 100g icing sugar
  • 100g ground almonds
  • 100g plain flour
  • 65g malt powder (or Horlicks)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp ground coffee beans
  • 8 egg whites (300g)
  • 2 shots of espresso (60ml)
  • pinch of coarse sea salt

Coffee and pecan financiers (7 of 39)

METHOD:

  1. Roast the pecans. Preheat the oven to 190°C/170°C fan/gas mark 5. Spread the pecans for both the financiers and the cream out on a parchment-lined baking tray and place in the oven for 12–15 minutes, until they have taken on a bit of colour. Use the flat side of a large knife to lightly crush them. Set aside half of the pecans for the financiers and half for the cream.Coffee and pecan financiers (1 of 39)
  2. To make the financiers, put the butter into a medium saucepan and place on a high heat. Once it starts to foam, cook for 3–4 minutes, until it turns golden-brown and smells nutty. Strain through a muslin- (or clean J-cloth-) lined sieve and set aside for about 15 minutes, to cool slightly.Coffee and pecan financiers (2 of 39)
  3. Place the icing sugar in a large bowl with the ground almonds, flour, malt powder, baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and ground coffee. Mix together and set aside.Coffee and pecan financiers (4 of 39)
  4. Place the egg whites in a separate bowl and whisk to form soft peaks: this should take about 3 minutes if you are whisking by hand and just 1 minute with an electric whisk.Coffee and pecan financiers (6 of 39)
  5. Fold the whites into the dry ingredients by hand, followed by the espresso. Next pour in half the browned butter, continuing to fold by hand as you pour in the remaining butter. Finally, fold in the pecans. Coffee and pecan financiers (13 of 39)Coffee and pecan financiers (12 of 39)Coffee and pecan financiers (10 of 39)
  6. Bake the financiers by preheating the oven to 220°C/200°C fan/gas mark 7. Grease mould of muffin tray or financier tray. Spoon in the mix until three-quarters full and bake for 10 –12 minutes, until the cakes are golden-brown on top and only just cooked through: a knife inserted should come out with a tiny amount of mix on it.Coffee and pecan financiers (15 of 39)
  7. Remove from the oven and set aside to rest for 5 minutes, before removing them from the tray. Serve warm or at room temperature, with a cup of tea if desired.
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Moist and Fluffy Lemon Poppyseed Muffins

Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (3 of 26)POPPY SEED DELIGHT | Light, delicate, sweet and moist muffins with tiny crunches of poppy seeds and the citrusy kiss of lemon. 

Woke up to a dreary Saturday morning. Rather than to let the dismal weather affect my mood, the optimistic voice inside of me nudged me to bake something to brighten up the day. Not so sure about you, but the scent of lemon always perks up the morning for me, especially in the cold winter days.

When lemon and baking comes to my mind, I instinctively think of warm lemon poppyseed muffins. The key to ensuring these muffins turn out moist and fluffy? Sour cream. Simply replace milk with sour cream in the same quantity and you will be left with moist muffins that can be frozen ahead of time.

These muffins are sweet and simple and comes together quickly – great for last minute cravings.

Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (11 of 26)Poppyseed muffins with a scent of lemon make a warm welcome to the winter blues.

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

INGREDIENTS:

Prep Time:  10 minutes | Cook Time: 18-20 minutes | Total Time: 30 minutes | Yield: 8 large muffins (12 small muffins)

  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk or sour cream
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 stick (8 Tablespoons) butter, melted until browned and cooled
  • 2 Tablespoons poppy seedsLemon PoppySeed Muffins (26 of 26).jpg

METHOD:

  1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 400 degrees Farenheit / 200 degrees Celsius.  Line a 12 mold, regular sized muffin tray with paper muffin liners, place the muffin pan on a baking sheet and set aside.
  2. Zest the lemon with a microplane grater and juice it.Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (23 of 26)Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (24 of 26)
  3. In a large bowl, rub the granulated sugar with the lemon zest until the sugar is lightly coloured and scented with lemon.  Whisk in the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (21 of 26)
  4. In a medium sized bowl whisk together the eggs, buttermilk (or sour cream) vanilla extract, melted butter and lemon juice.Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (20 of 26)
  5. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and fold together.  When almost thoroughly mixed, add the poppy seeds.  Divide batter between muffin cups.  Sprinkle each would be muffing with granulated sugar.Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (17 of 26)Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (16 of 26)Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (15 of 26)
  6. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until the tops are golden and a skewer inserted in the center of the muffin comes out clean.Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (13 of 26)Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (4 of 26).jpg
  7. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before glazing. Best served warm with a cup of tea.Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (6 of 26)Lemon PoppySeed Muffins (1 of 1)

 

Fluffy Ricotta Hotcakes With Honeycomb

Ricotta Hotcakes with Honeycomb (1 of 50)

Light and fluffy pancakes with a creaminess one can only dream of. 

I love breakfast. And nothing beats waking up to some seriously fluffy and warm ricotta hotcakes dowsed with honeycomb.  Extra fluffy with creamy, custard-like middles, ricotta hotcakes are something pancake connoisseurs have to try making (or die trying).

Inspired by Bill Granger – who hails from my sunny hometown, Sydney – his signature ricotta hotcakes with honeycomb butter and banana are to die for. I’ve had my fair share of his ricotta hotcakes in Sydney (Surry Hills), and recently in London (Nottinghill) and Tokyo (Ometosando) this year. Now is the time to recreate the ‘magic’ back home (until he sets up shop here at least, but who knows when that day will come – or where I’ll be by then!).

Mind you, there is no ‘magic’ or skilful technique required in this recipe. From a methodological perspective though, what separates these ricotta hotcakes apart from regular ones is the fact that you are meant to separate the egg yolks from the whites and beat the latter until stiff peaks form before folding it into the batter.

Note: The ricotta isn’t something you necessarily taste — the pancakes definitely don’t taste “cheesy” — but rather, the ricotta adds a magical milky richness and creaminess to each bite.

Ricotta Hotcakes with Honeycomb (24 of 50)

INGREDIENTS (makes 6 medium sized pancakes, serves 2):

  • 70 grams of fresh milk
  • 70 gram of plain flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 110 gram of ricotta
  • 2 eggs, white and yolks separated
  • pinch of salt
  • butter for pan-frying
  • 1-2 tablespoons of honeycomb, to serve
  • icing sugar, to dust

METHOD:

1) Place ricotta, milk and egg yolks in a mixing bowl and mix to combine.

Ricotta Hotcakes with Honeycomb (50 of 50)

2) Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Add to the ricotta mixture and mix until combined. Ricotta Hotcakes with Honeycomb (7 of 50) Ricotta Hotcakes with Honeycomb (10 of 50)

3) Place the egg whites in a clean dry bowl and beat until still peaks form. Fold egg whites through batter in two batches, with a large metal spoon.

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Ricotta Hotcakes with Honeycomb (45 of 50)

4) Lightly grease a large non-stick frying pan with a small portion of the butter and drop 2 tablespoons of batter per hotcake into the pan (don’t cook more than 3 per batch). Cook over low to medium heat for 2 minutes, or until hotcakes have golden undersides. Turn hotcakes and cook on the other side until golden and cooked through.

Ricotta Hotcakes with Honeycomb (17 of 50) Ricotta Hotcakes with Honeycomb (18 of 50)

5) Transfer hotcakes to a plate and quickly assemble with other ingredients (e.g. banana, honeycomb, etc). Dust with icing sugar.


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Nigella’s Banana Chocolate Muffins

Nigella Banana Chocolate Muffins (1 of 18)Found some overly ripe bananas lying around so decided to seize the opportunity and do something about it. Inspired by Nigella’s banana chocolate muffin recipe, I decided to put to good use my Ghiradelli unsweetened cocoa I purchased from Ghiradelli Square last year in San Francisco and whip out my pretty blue and white striped muffin paper cups for display. Despite Nigella’s recipe says the batter can make 12 muffins, I guess I was too overly generous with my serving sizes since I only ended up with 5 muffins (albeit steroid-sized). I handed out my muffins to my friends the next day and the feedback was that they all thought it was delicious and super moist, not too oily or sweet.

The beauty of this recipe is that it is very straightforward and pretty fail-safe. In less than thirty minutes, you will end up with super moist muffins bursting with the goodness of banana and paired with the richness of premium cocoa.

INGREDIENTS: (makes 12 small or 5 gigantic muffins)

  • 3 very ripe or overripe bananas
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup (packed) light brown sugar
  • 1 ¼ to 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons best-quality unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Ghiradelli), sifted
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch salt, optional (I skipped)
  • Icing sugar, to dust (optional)

METHOD:

1) Preheat the oven to 400˚ F / 200˚C and line a muffin tin with paper muffin cups. Show no mercy and mash the bananas.

2) Beat in the oil with a whisk, followed by the eggs and sugar.

3) In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Add this mixture to the banana mixture and stir gently until combined. Spoon into the muffin cups.

4)  Bake for 15-20 minutes, by which time the muffins should be dark, rounded and peeking proudly out of their cups. Let cool slightly in the pan before removing to a wire rack.

Nigella Banana Chocolate Muffins (18 of 18)

5) Once cooled, dust with icing sugar.

Nigella Banana Chocolate Muffins (3 of 18)

Sunny Side Up Breakfast Brioche

Bright and Cheerful Breakfast Brioche  (2 of 13)

“Keep your sunny side up” 🙂

Inspired by Teakha, my favourite quaint little teahouse located in the Poho/Sai Ying Pung area of Hong Kong, I decided to recreate this breakfast toast by using danish/brioche bread I bought downstairs from a Japanese style bakery. I love the juxtaposition of the cheerful colours – the vibrant, red, plump tomatoes contrasting with the creaminess of the green avocado – coupled with the bright, sunshine yellow of the oozing yolk from frying an egg sunny side up.

INGREDIENTS: (serves 1)

  • 1 egg
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 lime
  • 1 tomato
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup of pork floss, to garnish

METHOD:

1) Mash a ripe avocado up with the juice of a freshly squeezed lime. Add salt and pepper and adjust taste to your liking. Bright and Cheerful Breakfast Brioche  (12 of 13) Bright and Cheerful Breakfast Brioche  (10 of 13) 2) Dice tomatoes into small cubes. Bright and Cheerful Breakfast Brioche  (9 of 13) 3) Heat frypan on medium-high. Spray a layer of cooking oil. With the aid of an egg ring, crack egg into the ring to get a perfectly round shape. Once yolk seems to be setting, remove ring and transfer egg with a spatula to plate. Bright and Cheerful Breakfast Brioche  (7 of 13) Bright and Cheerful Breakfast Brioche  (5 of 13) 4) In the meantime, lightly toast slice of brioche in toaster. Remove and layer with the avocado, tomato and fried egg on top like an exposed healthy decker sandwich. Bright and Cheerful Breakfast Brioche  (6 of 13) Bright and Cheerful Breakfast Brioche  (1 of 13)5) Sprinkle the pork floss on top as a garnish. Enjoy! Bright and Cheerful Breakfast Brioche  (4 of 13) Bright and Cheerful Breakfast Brioche  (3 of 13)

Poached eggs on avocado toast

Poached Eggs on Avocado Toast (1 of 1)Decided I’ll debut my silicone poaching pods I bought from the Sur La Table at Fisherman’s wharf in San Francisco last June/July. First time using it but they do a decent job I must say. One day I will try poaching eggs the ‘real’ and traditional way but for now, I’m quite happy with my pods.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 egg

METHOD:

1) Boil water and spray oil onto the poaching pod. Crack egg into it and float on top of the boiling water for 4 minutes.

2) Take egg out with slotted spoon. Serve on top of toasted sourdough toast (or whatever bread of your liking) layered with mashed avocado.