Italian Herbs and Tomatoes Foccacia with home made stewed beef, leek and barley soup!

Freshly n Lovingly Baked n Stewed on :  23rd Aug 2014

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I am excited and happy to have friends over to bake and eat together.  I am not good with cooking. The few things I can do decently is probably this beef stew. So I decided to get this going first today while waiting to bake the focaccia with the gals.

What I prepared the night before is to infuse the olive oil with itslian herbs. I pour in about 80ml of extra virgin olive oil into a bottle with 1 Tbsp of Italian Dried Herbs. I also added in a pinch of black pepper and salt. Shake it well and let it sat overnight.

Ingredients for the beef, leeks and barley stew:

4 Cups Beef Stock
4 Cups Water
2 Tsp Salt
3 big stalk of Leeks
2 Big Brown onions
1 Cup Pearl Barley
2 Cloves Garlic
1/2 Can Chopped Tomatoes
1 Cup Dried Wild Mushrooms

Directions :

Slice up the leeks, onions and chop up the garlic. Slice up the beef into bit size pieces. Take 3 Tbsp of the herbs infused olive oil and use it to fry the garlic until fragrant. Add the onions and caramelised it. Add in the stock and water and bring it to a boil. Add in the beef, leeks, wild mushroom and barley. Let it boil for 10 minutes before lowering the heat. Let it simmer for 1.5 hours before adding in the chopped tomatoes. Continued to simmer for another 1.5 hours.

Foccacia

Ingredients

235g Bread Flour
10g Herbs infused olive oil
3g Instant Yeast
5g Salt
4g Granulated Sugar
150g Water

10 Small Cherries Tomatoes ( halved it and toss it in 2 Tbsp of herbs infused olive oil) and set aside.

Directions:

Add in the flour, salt, sugar and yeast in the mixing bowl before adding in the herbs infused oil and water. Mix it up before knead till it passed the window pane test. Let it did its first proof until it doubled in size. Once done, take it out, knead out all the air pockets and shaped it into a round shape. Flatten it and place it onto a baking tray. Let it did another round of rise for 30 minutes. Brush a layer of herbs infused olive oil onto the dough. Once done, pushed the tomatoes into the dough and baked it in a preheated oven of 220 degree.

Only slice it up after it completely cooled down. Unfortunately, I do not have the time given that it is almost dinner time and everyone is hungry!

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A Humongous doughnut birthday “cake” for my beautiful country Singapore!

Freshly and Lovingly Baked  on : 9th Aug 2014

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It is Singapore’s 49th Birthday today. I cannot say enough how proud I am to be a Singaporean. I know we have our issues. I know we are small. I know we are not perfect. I know cars are expensive here. I know we cant sell chewing gum. I know there is a lot of can’ts. At the same time, there is a chinese saying that literally translated as ” silver or gold house cannot be compared to own dog house”.  To put it more tastefully, nothing beats the comfort of our own home. In this case, my own little country.

I cannot say I am very well travelled. However, I am blessed to be able to go to a decent number of places in the world to think that Singapore is still one of the best places to live. Maybe cost has never be an issue since I was birthed and raised in this place, I have learned to accept the high standard of living. Also, I do know that my heavenly Father will provide abundantly for me and I will never lacked a single day of my life.

Behind the success of this tiny country was the hard work and vision of one of the most respected man I known. I have learned to appreciate his vision as the years passed by. Take for eg, I never really understood why beggars are not allowed on the street of Singapore until I went to Shenzhen when I am 14 years old. I remembered drinking coke and walking on the street when this little girl came to me and said ” sister, can I have a sip?” My heart sank and it really made me rather sad for the entire trip. If Singapore needs to depend on tourism then beggars are not recommended. I cannot understand why someone cannot afford a bottle of coke. And Why do our government imposes a certain emission standards on our cars? I only realised why and the beauty of it when I crossed over to HK from Shenzhen.  It is A small country as well but with really bad pollution. What would Singapore has becomes if we do not control that. I am glad to be able to inhale deeply and I like to do that for a long time to come in Singapore.

So Happy Birthday Dear Singapore. May the Lord blesses you !

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Ingredients :

170g Unsalted Butter
2 Eggs
1/2 Cup Low Fat Milk
1/2 Cup Buttermilk
3 Cups All Purpose Flour
3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1/2 Tsp Ground Nutmeg
1 Tsp Cinnamon
2.5 Tsp Baking Powder
1/4 Tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Tsp Salt

White chocolate Glaze

Ingredients:

42g Unsalted Butter
200g White Chocolate Chips

Others:

Desired amount of candied roselle

Directions:

Sift flour, nutmeg, cinnamon, baking powder and soda together. Add in the salt and ensure it is well mixed with the sifted powders. Mix milk and buttermilk together and set it aside. Next, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Mix in the eggs one at a time until its incorporated into it. Next do it in parts of 3 for the dry sifted powders and 2 pairs of liquids. Mix in 1/3 of the powders and then 1/2 the liquid and so on. Alway end with the dry ingredients.

Scoop the batter into the well greased desired pan. Baked it in a preheated oven of 175 degree for 35 minutes.

After taking the doughnut out from the oven and letting it to cool down, prepare the white chocolate Glaze by melting the chocolate over the double boiler. Once it melted, lift it away from the heat and quickly stirred in the butter.

Then scoop it over the doughnut. Sprinkle candied roselle over it.

The cross sections

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Dessicated Coconuts Raspberries bites

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The only reason why I posted this up was that I like the look of it. Recipe is a disaster and I shall not point fingers.

Basically mixing dessicated coconut, fresh raspberries and some other things. It was baked for 10/12 mins. A waste of my organic raspberries. When I thought about it now, I am thankful that I probably has better discernmentsin choosing recipe to bake as I dwell deeper into this baking journey.

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