Red Velvet Belgian Waffles

Homemade waffle

Waffle with whipped cream and blueberries

Breakfast is one of the things that really stress me out. It has to be quick and at the same time can appeal to your kids appetite especially very early in the morning. I hate it if I made something and it is left untouched by them… and normally if they do that, the next morning they will have cereals for breakfast hehehe. I know I know.. I am a terrible mother. Don’t have to state the obvious…

Normally I do make things that they love in advance and freeze them such as rissoles and murtabak filling, so in the morning, I just need to fry them or assemble a mini murtabak for breakfast. So.. this waffle was made to see if it is worthy enough to make it to the breakfast table hahaha. I made the whole batch last week and it yielded about 16 small squares of waffles. I freezed a few squares and last weekend I reheated them up using the toaster and the waffle iron. Both turned up to be okay but my preference is still using waffle iron. I am pleased to tell you that this recipe is good enough to be another frozen food items in the freeze hehehe.

Belgium style waffle iron

Belgium style waffle iron

Oh.. if any of you guys are wondering about the taste… I give 2 thumbs up for this recipe.. crunchy and lovely. Recipe was taken from Taste of Home with a little twist of my own.

Crunchy.. just the way I like it

Crunchy.. just the way I like it

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 1-1/2 cups milk
  • 1 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp red coloring
  • 1/2 tsp vinegar
  • cream frosting, sliced fresh strawberries or syrup

Methods:

  1. In a bowl, combine flour, sugar and baking powder. In another bowl, lightly beat egg yolks. Add milk, butter, vanilla, vinegar and red coloring; mix well. Stir into dry ingredients just until combined. Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form; fold into batter. 
  2. Bake in a preheated waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions until golden brown. Serve with cream cheese frosting, strawberries or syrup.
Look at the colour.. love it

Look at the colour.. love it

Luqaimat

Omani Luqaimat

Omani Luqaimat

Yesterday I was talking to a friend of mine about IQ level and she told me that hers has dropped to average ever since she become a home maker…hmmmm it get me thinking… I am confident that mine has drop to below average. Why? Because most of the time now I need my kids to remind me how spell certain words… I think it is a sign hehehe. Well… I am taking the initiative to move my IQ level up to average at least hehehe because my friend told me that reading and writing can improve your IQ… we’ll see.

I know that it has been awhile since my last posting and yesterday when I opened my blog I was actually surprised that my last posting was in April… it has been close to half a year since I last wrote… no wonder my IQ has dropped hehehe. Orait orait orait… lets see my new recipe for today… Luqaimat. Luqaimat – لقيمات- is a well-known dessert between Arabs and it is a must dessert in arab home for iftar. It varies between country to country and I am ashame to let you know that I have never tasted this desert until last Ramadhan. Have seen it when I was in Kuwait but never had the guts to try because people said that it is soooo sweet. Luqaimat is also known as Crunchy Sweet Dumpling. The dumpling itself is not sweet but the syrup that is poured on top of it is the one that make is sweet.

During the first week of last Ramadhan, we were invited by my other half’s customer to his house for iftar. This was my first time being invited by the local to their house. Kuwaities never invite a non family members to their house unless they really like you. So, we were quite nervous as my other half already told me that this customer is one of the richest family in Oman… so please make sure the kids behave. Their house is so huge and I would say it should be called a castle. They have a huge indoor pool and also a private beach… masyaallah, the house is so beautiful. Anyway… the dinner was great…buffet style even though only 11 of us and when it came to dessert time I was made to taste all the of them… nak tak nak kena lah try this luqaimat. It is rude to say no to their favourite dessert,right? I am surprised that it tasted not bad at all but since the syrup that was used has a hint of cardamon, I cant say I love it hehehe. So that was my first encounter with luqaimat.

The second time I ate luqaimat was at another omani house that we went for iftar and I have to say that this family changed my opinion about this dessert. Their luqaimat was not covered with syrup and cardamon but it was covered with condense milk… it was great and delicious. I managed to ask for a recipe and I am proud to tell you that I had made this dessert couple of times during the last Ramadhan. Below is the recipe and I dare you to try and make it. Happy baking!

Crunchy Sweet Dumpling

Crunchy Sweet Dumpling

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp corn flour
  • 1 tsp instant yeast
  • 1 tsp of sugar
  • 3/4 – 1 cup of water
  • Condense milk
  • Oil for fry

Method

  • Mix all purpose flour, corn flour, yeast and sugar in a bowl.
  • Gradually add the water and keep on mixing until  you get a smooth batter. It should be in dropping consistency not too watery or too thick.
  • Cover the batter for 1 or 2 hours until the batter doubled. The batter now should have bubbles and somewhat bouncy.
  • Heat oil in a wok. Scoop a small amount of batter with your fingers and drop them into the hot oil (macam nak buat cekodok).
  • Fry till they turn golden brown. Remove from oil, and place them on kitchen paper.
  • Pour condense milk or your favorite syrup on top.
Right from the stove

Right from the stove

Cream Puffs

Cream puff

A profiterole, cream puff or choux à la crème

Assalamualaikum and a very good evening to all. Hope life is treating everyone good.

Oman celebrated its 43rd National day last Monday 18th November but the official holiday for the National day will be on this coming Wednesday 27th and Thursday 28th November. I am looking forward to this long weekend. No concrete plan has been made but insyaallah we will go somewhere. Oman is too beautiful to be left unexplored furthermore we are receiving guest this Wednesday, the more reason to go out in the sun hehehe.

We have been in Muscat since 28th August and we have been to a couple of places that I find it to be breathtaking. Oman has a very unique landscape; rocky mountains, sandy dunes, amazing beaches and not to forget natural wadis…. what is there not to love!

Amazing scenery from Muscat to Bimmah sinkhole

Amazing scenery from Muscat to Bimmah sinkhole

The first trip that we took was to the Bimmah sink hole and Wadi Al Shab during the eid holidays. Shukri and Anis with their 3 girls came over from Kuwait to spend 5 days in Muscat knowing that we just moved in and eid would be lonely without family and close friends. We really appreciate them coming all the way from Kuwait to our humble home just to keep us company. On the second day of eid holiday we went to Bimmah Sinkhole. Bimmah Sinkhole is located in the fenced and toilet-equipped Hawiyat Najm Park. It is approximately 1.5 hrs drive from Muscat.

Bimmah Sinkhole

Bimmah Sinkhole

Bimmah sinkhole occurred naturally due to limestone erosion. This sinkhole is said to be connected to the sea through an underground tunnel which then explain the unique colour of the water. We have no way of confirming this but my girls did taste the water and they said it taste slightly salted. So, maybe it is true that this sinkhole is connected to the sea which is one or two km away. You can actually swim here, so by all means, please bring your swimming costume people!

The water is so inviting

The water is so inviting

After spending about 1 hour here, we proceed to our next destination, Wadi Shab. Wadi Shab is approximately 20 km from Bimmah Sinkhole but since our GPS gave a weird location of this wadi, we kind of wonder off road for a while and go up a mountain hehehe. We then called a friend and she told us that this wadi so near to the road and should you already go up the mountain, you are definitely lost. Almost gave up, we decided to just proceed to Sur and then, suddenly the signboard appeared… what a relieve! It is just by the roadside…. well, at least some part of it. We parked our car and took a boat to the other side. The guy on the boat told us that you need to walk about 1 hour to the waterfall. Since we have children and baby with us, we decided to just walk to the first pool so that the kids could have a dip. The other tourist told us that it is just a 10 minutes walk but the the kids, not suitable foot ware and the heat factor, I swear that it took us almost 20 minutes to the pool. Thank God that the kids had fun in the water.

Wadi Shab

Wadi Shab

wadishab1

Walking to the first pool…tiring

After Wadi Shab, we drove to Sur for a late lunch and then headed home to Muscat. It was a long day but the scenery was to die for. In the next posting I’ll tell you our next adventure after the sinkhole and Wadi Shab, stay tune!

Okay, now we come to the new recipe for today, cream puff. I seriously do not remember where I got the recipe from but I Have been using this recepi since I first moved to Kuwait. Happy baking guys!

cream puff with vanilla pastry cream

Cream puff with vanilla pastry cream

Ingredient:

Choux Pastry:

  • 1 cup  all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter cut into pieces
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 large egg, lightly beaten

Pastry Cream:

  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 2 large yolks – beaten
  • 3/4 cup  granulated sugar (you can reduce this if you do not fancy a sweet pastry cream)
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup corn flour
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Method:

Choux Pastry:

  1. Preheat oven to 200C. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a bowl sift together flour,sugar and salt.
  3. Place the butter and water in a heavy saucepan over medium high heat and bring to a boil. (Make sure that the butter melts before the water boils to reduce the amount of evaporation.)
  4.  Remove from heat and with a wooden spoon, add the flour mixture, all at once, and stir until combined.
  5. Return saucepan to the heat and stir constantly until the dough comes away from the sides of the pan and forms a thick smooth ball
  6. Transfer the dough to your electric mixer and beat on low speed to release the steam from the dough. Once the dough is lukewarm start adding the lightly beaten eggs and continue to mix until you have a smooth thick paste.
  7. Spoon or pipe 24 small mounds of dough onto the baking sheet, spacing about 2 inches (5 cm) apart.
  8. Bake for 15 minutes and then reduce the oven temperature to 180 degrees C. Continue to bake for a further 30 to 35 minutes or until the shells are a nice amber color and when split, are almost dry inside. Turn the oven off and with the oven door slightly ajar, let the shells completely cool.
  9. When the shells are cool, either split and fill them with the pastry cream, or use a pastry bag to pipe the pastry cream into the shells.

 

Pastry Cream:

  1. Place the butter in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Once melted add sugar, salt and corn flour. Mix well.
  2. Add milk and cook until just about to boil.
  3. Add the egg slowly, whisking constantly to prevent curdling. Cook for another 2 minutes or until the mixture become thick.
  4. Remove from the heat and stir in vanilla.
  5. Cool to room temperature and then refrigerate until ready to use.
Can be refrigerate for 2-3 days

Can be refrigerated for 2-3 days

Churros

My humble churros

My humble churros

Assalamualaikum and good evening everyone. It is 18:30 here in Muscat and guess what… it is WEEKEND! I am so glad that weekend has finally decided to drop by hehehe. This morning I was fortunate enough to be able to join a trip to Amouage Factory organized by Perwakilan Muscat.

YBhg. Professor Madya Datin Dr. Musrifah Sapardi

YBhg. Professor Madya Datin Dr. Musrifah Sapardi (Lady in Pink)

Amouage is a luxury Sultanate of Oman perfume established in 1983 by His Majesty Sultan Qaboos. The original intention was for the royal family as well as a gift from His Majesty to the county’s visitors.

Amouage

Amouage

Amouage uses traditional materials of Middle Eastern perfumery such as frankincense and myrrh. Besides that they uses other type of herbs such as cardamon, cinnamon, cloves and red peppercorn.

Fran

Frankincense

Ingredients for their perfumes

Ingredients for their perfumes

Their first fragrant was Amouage Gold, intoduced in 1983 and the latest Amouage collection is FATE which was introduced this year.

FATE for Man and Woman

FATE for Man and Woman

Our tour guide explained to us about how does the pyramid structure of ingredients affected the smell of the perfumes. Lets take the example of Ciel Woman perfume. Oh… by the way Ciel means sky in French and the pronunciation is dekat2 dengan “SIAL” hehehe. Okay okay okay… if you look at the ingredients pyramid below, you can see the word “Top Notes”, “Heart Notes” and “Base Notes” at the far left corner. What does it mean? Top Notes is the scent that you get immediately upon application of a perfume and it lasted a few minutes. Heart Notes is the scent that emerges just prior to when the top notes dissipate which is about 2 to 3 minutes of apllication of the perfume. It will stay for round about 30 minutes and then the Base Notes smell will appears and it will last as long as it last hehehe. For Amouage, our tour guide said that you can smell the perfume until the next day.

Ingredients pyramid

Ingredients pyramid

All their workers are Omani.

In their factory and all their workers are Omani.

Orait folks… itu saja pelajaran kita utk kali ini, next on my list is the recipe for Churros. I dedicate this recipe to my sister Aisyah and my sister-in-law Liza because I know that they love this churros very much. This churros is easy to make and amazingly delicious to eat. I took the recipe from here.

My kids said it taste just like doughnut... just different shape

My kids said it taste just like doughnut… just different shape

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 large eggs
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

Method:

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine water, butter, sugar, and salt; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low, and sift in flour, stirring for 1 minute.
  2. Transfer flour mixture to bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. On low speed, add eggs; 1 at a time, beating until incorporated after each addition; spoon mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a large open-star tip.
  3. Heat 4 to 5 inches oil in a large deep-fry. Holding pastry bag a few inches above the oil, squeeze out batter, snipping off 4-inch lengths with a knife or kitchen shears. Fry, flipping once, until deep golden brown all over, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer churros to a paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain.
  4. Roll churros in confectioners’ sugar.

Pretzel

Pretzel

Assalamualaikum and a very good morning to all. How’s your weekend? I hope you guys had a great one. Last weekend our weather here was brilliant … clear sky and the temperature was just nice for a family outing… I hope everyone did make an effort to go out and enjoy the weather. As for me, last Friday I spent the whole day helping some ladies making some Malaysian snacks for the Malaysian Food Bazaar which will be on 31st March 2012 ie this weekend. This event is a joint venture between the Malaysian Ladies Association of Kuwait and Embassy of Malaysia Kuwait. We will be selling  authentic Malaysian signature dishes such as satay, nasi dagang, nasi kerabu, nasi lemak, mee rebus, laksa and much more. I hope that everything will go smoothly as plan, insyaallah.

Malaysian Food Bazaar 2012

OK… recipe for today is homemade pretzel. I cant remember where I got this recipe from but I’m glad that you post it. This was my 4th time making this pretzel and the kids love it. If you have time, do try this recipe and I promise you that you wont be disappointed.

Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel

Ingredient:-

Pretzel dough

  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 1/4 tsp yeast
  • 3tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp salt

Baking Soda water:

  • 2 tbsp baking soda
  • 2 cup warm water

For Dipping:

  • 100g butter – melted
  • cinnamon sugar mixture  or your favourite topping

Method:

  1. Place all pretzel dough ingredients in bread machine pan in the order suggested by the manufacturer. Select DOUGH setting and press ON. It will take 1 1/2 hours to complete the cycle.
  2. While dough is rising, prepare a baking soda water bath with 2 cups warm water and 2 Tbsp baking soda. Be certain to stir often.
  3. Preheat the oven to 230C.
  4. After dough has risen, turn the dough out onto a slightly  floured work surface and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope and shape into a pretzel. (I divided my dough into 12 equal pieces so that I can have smaller pretzel.)
  5. Dip pretzel in baking soda solution for 1 minute to 1 1/2 minutes and place on greased baking sheet. Sprinkle some salt  and bake for 10 – 15 minutes.
  6. Dip the pretzel in melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar mixture or your favourite topping. Enjoy!

Shrimp Toast

Shrimp Toast

Howdy howdy howdy… I hope everyone is in good mental state on this lovely day he he he… Well, after a long 3-day weekend I think everyone should be fully recharged and eager to start their week regardless of what line of job they are in. Actually for us in Kuwait we started our brand new week yesterday (Sunday) because we had our public holiday on Thursday but it is not too late to wish everyone a wonderful week ahead.

February is a very short month for us in Kuwait. Why? Well, Kuwait celebrates their National and Liberation Day on the 25th and 26th of February every year and the government normally will give few days extra. As for our kids’ school, this year it will be closed from 24th February to 3rd March, a total of 9 days break. Lots of people usually will take this opportunity to travel and if by now you have not booked your flight out of Kuwait, must probably you will have to stay here for that duration because the flights are fully booked already. Most people here make their February travel plans sometimes in December, so if you have missed the boat this year, make sure to put it in your diary so that you won’t miss it again!

Okay… enough with that, lets talk about our recipe for today ; Shrimp toast. This is originally a Chinese appetizer called Hatosi (蝦多士)  in Cantonese, Ha meaning shrimp, Tosi being a loan word from English meaning toast. This dish has over 100 years of history, originating in the Guangzhou Canton, in China’s Guangdong Province.

There are many different versions of this shrimp toast, but our family were introduced to this snack only a couple of week back by a  friend  at our favourite Thai restaurant here in Kuwait, where the shrimp paste-covered bread is dipped in sesame seeds before frying. This gives the end result a fantastic crunch and works perfectly with a sweet Thai sauce.

So crunchy and addictive....

Ingredient:

  • 100g shrimp – peel and de-vein
  • 1/2 tsp corn flour
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp egg white
  • salt n pepper to taste
  • sesame seed

Method:

    1. Mix everything except sesame seed in food processor and pulse until become smooth paste.
    2. Spread the paste onto a slice of bread and then cut into half. Coat with sesame seed.
    3. Add about 1/2 inches of oil to a heavy bottomed pan until it reaches approx 190C. If you don’t have a thermometer, drop a small piece of bread into the oil. If it rises to the surface and starts sizzling, it is ready.
    4. Add the toasts, shrimp and sesame seed side down. When the edges of the bread start to brown, flip the toasts over and fry the bread side until it is golden brown. Transfer to a paper towel lined rack with the bread side facing the paper towel to drain as much oil as possible.
    5. Serve with the Sweet Thai Chili Sauce for dipping.

Thanks to Azura and Mady for introducing us to this wonderful snack

Baked Donuts with Blue Glaze icing

Blue glazed donuts

Assalamualaikum and good evening to all. For us in Kuwait, it is already weekend because the government decided to declare 2 February as a public holiday (Prophet’s Muhammad saw birthday) instead of 5 February. I think they decided to change the date to accommodate the Parliamentary Election which is tomorrow, 2nd February 2012.

Strawberries are cheap in winter...love it

Kuwait’s weather were quite cold for the last 2 weeks and as the result of that, half of the family members had to pay a visit to the doctor again last week. Luckly this time, the smaller kids were not affected, thank God for that. Yesterday it was raining…. a very rare thing in Kuwait and it lasted the whole day (until late night actually) and today it is windy and cloudy… and normally if the weather is cold, the kids will get hungry easily. So I decided to bake these nice donuts that I have been putting it off for quite sometimes already.

Kids literally jumping with joy when they saw these donuts

The donuts recipe was taken from Lemon Drop and the blue glazing idea was taken from Paty’s kitchen. This donuts is different from the normal fried donuts that we are used to. This donuts has a texture of a cake and is super soft. The best part about this donuts that I love the most is, it is super easy to make and you don’t have to wait for 1 hour for the dough to rise…. lucky me!

Strawbery and melted chocolate for Jessy

Ingredient

DONUTS

  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 75 g sugar
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/4 tsp fine grain salt
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup full fat sour cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 egg at room temperature

GLAZE

  • 1 1/4 cup icing sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 0r 2 drops of food colouring

Method

DONUTS

  1. Spray donuts pan with baking spray and preheat oven to 350F
  2. In a large bowl, sift together first 3 ingredients.
  3. Whisk in sugar, salt and cinnamon powder.
  4. Add butter and mix into flour mixture with fingers until crumbly (as if making a shortcrust)
  5. In medium bowl, whisk together remaining donuts ingredients
  6. Add the wet ingredients to dry ingredients, folding in with rubber spatula just until combined
  7. Pipe batter with round open piping tip into donuts pan
  8. Bake for 8 minutes.
  9. Remove donuts from the pan and transfer to cooling rack

GLAZE

  1. In a medium bowl whisk together icing sugar, vanilla and milk until smooth.
  2. Dip top of  donuts into the glaze and return to rack, right side up, sprinkle with some candy confetti and allow the glaze to set. Enjoy!

Donuts and strawberries....