Sunday, June 28, 2009

Peanut Butter Cookies

What could be more delightful than eating your own freshly baked cookies? Combining peanut butter and peanuts into your cookie mixture couldn't be more tempting as nothing beats the aroma of cookies coming from your kitchen oven.

Baking: A Commonsense Guide refers to this as Peanut Biscuits. But I prefer to call it Peanut Butter Cookies. Here is my slightly adapted version.

All you need are:

185g unsalted butter, softened
370g soft brown sugar (You can reduce this as the outcome is really sweet cookies)
140g smooth peanut butter (mine was crunchy peanut butter so I halved the peanut portion)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg
185g plain flour (sifted)
1/2 tsp baking powder
125g rolled oats
120g chopped peanuts

1. Preheat oven to 180 deg C and line baking trays with greaseproof paper
2. Beat the butter, sugar. vanilla extract and peanut butter in a bowl using electric beater till smooth
3. Add the egg and beat
4. Mix in the flour and baking powwder
5. Fold in the oats and peanuts and mix till smooth
6. Chill until firm
7. Roll heaped tbsp of mixture into balls onto the tray and press it gently with a fork
8. Bake for 15-20min and let them cool on a wire rack

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Beautiful Taiwan (21-25 May)

People say Taiwan is a food haven. How true is this? I've never been to Taiwan in my xx years of life.. and guess it's time I take a look.

The past weeks of tormentous dieting and exercising had all gone to waste.. Taiwan is known famously for its night street market. The Ye (4) Shi (4) is tons better than ours and ours pale in comparison! Streets and rows of food stalls lure your senses and tickle your taste buds endlessly... My first stop was the Shi Lin Market at Jian (4) Tan (2) MRT station. Not to be missed in Taiwan is their deliciously deep fried Ji (1) Pa (2) - fried chicken cutlet. It was huge in size but good enough for one person (or maybe not enough for one!) 2nd not to be missed iitem is definitely the infamous Smelly Tou Fu. It is a type of fermented beancurd which has a stale smell to it. However it tastes quite alright, when taken with the ginger at the side. I personally don't like it actually. It takes lotsa guts to really eat this beancurd as the smell is really really strong. 10 over the richter scale.

Ji Pa

Smelly Beancurd

Their bubble tea range is so huge that sometimes you can't really decide on which to get. They have the ice blended ones, red tea, green tea, pearls or without pearls etc etc. They are also good for their papaya milkshake. Good to chill you down in the swelting hot weather of 35 deg C!

Street stalls are aplenty in Taiwan. The fruit stall look so vibrant with different types of fruits that look so healthy and yummy! Doctors always say fruits are good for you!

We had a simple breakfast at one coffee stall near Taipei Main Station. It was a simple spread of soya bean milk with fried gyoza, sandwich and turnip cake. It wasn't too bad but you shouldn't really mind the hygiene level... eat with your eyes closed :S

From Taipei Main Station, we bought a HSR ticket (bullet train) to Khao Xiong. Look out for discounted fare on Fri between 10am-12pm. It could mean signficant savings to those travelling on a shoestring budget. It took about 1.5 hrs to reach Khao Xiong. From Zuo (2) Ying (3) Station we took the MRT to the south, where we hopped on the ferry to a small island (like our Sentosa from Harbourfront) This place is a paradise for seafood lovers. Seafood is cheap and aplenty in this little island. They are fresh and just simply order what you fancy from what is displayed outside and they will prepare for you with unlimited bowls of rice for you.

After much walking in the little island called Qi (2) Jin (1), we were feeling very hot and tired. A good mango dessert would do much justice!

There are many dessert stalls around Taipei. I visited another one near Shi Lin MRT Station called Xian (1) Yu (4) Xian (1). It was the beancurd with red beans.. how heavenly!! My only gripe was the red beans aint enough.. I want more!

We have our prata in Singapore. Taiwan has their Onion Pancake which tastes just as good. It's more savoury and tasty.. a definitely must try item :)

Hope you have enjoyed the visual feasting as I enjoyed my physical feasting! After my 4 day pig out trip, it was time to head back to Singapore for a serious crash diet again.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Cheese French Toast

French toast is one of my favourite. It is a simple concoction of bread and egg but it tastes so yummy! It is also one of the easy-to-prepare breakfast and snack. Having tried Ya Kun's Cheesy French Toast, I decided to attempt this myself as it looked really too easy for anyone to master.

Simply sandwich a slice of cheese in 2 slices of white bread. Dip in a bowl of 2 beaten eggs with some pepper and sugar. Heat up pan with margarine and fry the bread over low heat. Remove when cheese inside has slightly melted and egg has browned.

Serve with some Ya Kun kaya or honey if you wish.