Monthly Archives: June 2012

Kale & Tofu Chow Mac

You may get a sense some familiarity with this dish. It probably reminds you of this or  looking similar to this. Okay maybe the latter is a bit of a stretch but I tend to revolve my cooking around a couple of the same ingredients with a slight variation. Does this happen to you too?

But I have a good reason for this. I’m trying to keep a healthy and an NOT OBSCENE amount of stuff in my pantry and fridge. Similar to the Project 10-Pan for beauty products, I try to use up the ingredients which I already have before I go out and buy more. Since I’m heading to Sydney for Blogopolis this weekend (I’m so excited for my first bloggers’ conference!), I’m doing my “stocktake” early and this was what I came up with. Speaking of efficiency eh? ;)

Kale & Tofu Chow Mac

Portion for 2 to 3 people

What you’ll need:-

  • 200g / 7 ounces of uncooked San Remo Macaroni
  • 320g /11.2 ounces firm tofu, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp dried chilli flakes *optional
  • A bunch of kale (about 10 to 12 medium-sized leaves), finely shredded
  • 1/3 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1.5 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp Indonesian sweet soy sauce (see here if you wish to make your own)
  • Cooking oil
  • Recently boiled water to cook the pasta
  • 2 eggs *optional, if you want to top the chow mac with fried eggs*

(1) Cook macaroni according to the packet instructions until al dente. Drained and set aside. (2) In a dry pan, lightly brown the diced firm tofu and set aside on a plate. (3) If you wish to add fried eggs topping, add a little oil in the same pan and scramble the egg until just cooked. Set aside. (4) Add more oil into the same pan again, saute garlic and dried chilli flakes over medium flame until aromatic. Then add cooked macaroni and tofu and saute for a minute over medium flame. Add kale and saute until slightly wilted. Add one or two tablespoons of water to help cook the kale. (5) Add sesame oil, light soy sauce and Indonesian sweet soy sauce and saute until well combined. Allow the chow mac to cook for a minute or two over high heat and then serve immediately.

PS: If you are using a measuring spoon in Step 5, it helps to start with sesame oil first as it will grease the surface of the spoon and helps the sweet soy sauce (with caramelly texture) to slide off easily from the spoon.

 

   

Raspberry Muffin Loaf with Coconut Pistachio Crunch

This is a variation of strawberry crunch muffins which was posted a while ago. Similar to the strawberry post, these raspberries were an impulse purchase. A lady turned up to my office selling two large punnets of raspberries for $20 which normally would cost me almost double the price. Raspberries are quite expensive in Australia…and to me these were a bargain. With that being said, I still consider this to be a splurge when it comes to buying fruits.

Since we are heading towards the end of financial (fiscal) year, I wanted to celebrate this occasion with my workmates. And baking a delicious raspberry loaf for work seems to be appropriate. Did I tell you that I am an accountant by day? I can’t speak for all accountants in Australia but for me, a new financial year is like any new year….definitely worthy of a celebration with a sweet treat no?

Raspberry Muffin Loaf with Coconut Pistachio Crunch

(tweaked from Holly’s raspberry crunch muffins recipe)

This recipe fills up a 15cm x 9cm (6″ x 3.5″ /1 lb) loaf pan + 3 muffin cups or 16 medium sized muffins

What you’ll need:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3.5 tsps baking powder
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 100g butter, melted
  • 1 cup yoghurt
  • 2 -3 tbsps milk (moist enough to stir in the raspberries)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 200g fresh raspberries

Coconut Pistachio Crunch Topping:

  • 25g / 0.88 ounces cold butter
  • 1/8 cup (half of a quarter) all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 cup unsweetened dessicated coconut
  • 2 tbsps demerera sugar (coarse sugar) *which I have omitted simple to cut down my sugar intake
  • 40g / 1.4 ounces pistachios, de-shelled

(1) Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius (374 degrees F). (2) Line the loaf pan with a baking paper. Grease the surface which is not covered by the baking paper with some of the melted butter. (3) In a medium sized bowl, place eggs, butter, yoghurt and vanilla extract. Whisk to combine. (4) Sift in flour and brown sugar into the batter and stir until just combined. (5) Gently stir in raspberries. (6) Add mixture into the prepared loaf pan and sprinkle topping (method below) over the mixture before baking. (7) Bake muffin loaf for about 1 hour and 20 minutes. Let the muffin loaf stands in pan for 10 minutes before turning onto a wire rack.

To make the toppings: Use a small processor, process all the ingredients until resembles rubbles.

PS: The baking time may vary depending on the size of loaf pan you use. The larger the loaf pan, the lesser baking time. I like the towering effect of a loaf so I used a smaller loaf pan (in order to fill the batter towards the brim of the pan). As a result it took me a considerable time to cook all the way through. If you use a muffin pan, it takes about 20 to 25 minutes of baking time.

   

Tim Tam Slam {Hot} & Raspberry Tim Tam Milkshake {Cold}

How could I mention Tim Tam without bringing up the famous Tim Tam Slam? It is not really a drink made with chocolate biscuits but it is a WAY of eating Tim Tam with your hot drink.

Hot drinks can be a cuppa (tea), coffee and in my case, hot milk with malt.

Tim Tam Slam

To do: You start with a cup of hot drink. Take a SMALL bite at opposite corners of a Tim Tam biscuits. Working very quickly, dunk one bitten side into the hot drink with you both hands and suck the hot drink through the other bitten side, as if a straw. As soon as the milk passes through the biscuit, the whole thing sort off collapses and you have to shove the whole thing in your mouth. (Yes, I said shove! How often do I get to instruct people to shove food into their mouth? ;) )

The next drink recipe is dedicated to those who are enjoying warm and sunny days (I’m jealous!) and who are craving for a thick, icy cold chocolate milkshake with a hint of REAL raspberry flavour and texture from chocolate biscuit crumbs. Well lucky people, look no further, I have just the recipe for you below.

Raspberry Tim Tam Milkshake

Makes 2 cups

What you’ll need:

  • 3 Tim Tam Original biscuits
  • 1 cup of cold milk
  • A handful of fresh/frozen raspberries (about 7- 8 raspberries)
  • 3 – 4 scoops of chocolate ice cream

To do: Process the Tim Tam biscuits until resembles fine crumbs and set aside. Then combine milk, raspberries and ice cream in a milkshake container and process the mixture until smooth and creamy with a stick blender. Stir in the Tim Tam crumbs (leave some behind for garnish). Serve immediately.

I don’t think I need anything more to prove that I’m Truly, Madly Tim Tam. I hope you are too!

PS: I don’t know how you feel about gulping down the milkshake. The straw in the photo is an evidence of my vanity (oh it brings back the memories of me rocking my stilettos while sight-seeing with my beloved in Taronga Zoo in Dubbo). The biscuits crumbs cause some blockage to the conventional straws unless you have a larger straw (like the ones with the bubble teas).

PPS: First shove and then gulp. I’m definitely failing How To Be A Lady 101. ;P

PPPS: This is a RocketFuel sponsored post.

 

   

3 Ways with Heinz Squeeze & Stir {Product Talk}

When I read the Nuffnang product talk opportunity on Heinz Squeeze and Stir in my inbox,  I was intrigued.

For convenience, I do keep some canned soup in my pantry especially in Wintery weather in Orange, the need becomes more apparent. When I’m not making soup at home, instant soup is really handy when I need something to fill my hunger in between meals and when I feel under the weather. I prefer the canned version than powdered version, simply because the canned ones are closer to the real deal.

So how about the Heinz’s Squeeze and Stir version?

When I first saw its packaging, I thought the soup better not taste like tomato paste mixed with hot water. And I’m glad it didn’t. Taste wise, it turned out to be quite close with canned tomato soup  minus the risk of chipping one’s manicure. My beloved really loves this. Since he is currently studying for his exam, his rate of “snacking” has increased exponentially. In effort to keep him away from the sweet stuffs, Heinz Squeeze & Stir is next best study mate! lol

Here’s how I had my Heinz Squeeze & Stir:-

With Toasts:-

{Make according to the packet instructions. One thing I have say that it takes 2 packets to fill up a soup mug to the rim. Whilst the instructions are pretty precise i.e you need to add 50 ml to “loosen up” the paste and additional 180ml to make the soup. Realistically if I were to make it in the office, it would pretty funny to whip out my measuring cup to make the soup. So the general idea is to add just enough water to cover the paste. Once the paste has became more diluted, add more hot water to your preferred consistency and taste. Same principle with making instant soup or instant cappuccino  – staple food and drink for office people ha!}

With Four Bean Mix & Leftover Cooked Pasta (a la Minestrone)

{What you’ll need to make this are 1 packet of Heinz Squeeze & Stir, cook according to packet instructions, add1 x 125g can of Four Bean Mix, drain and rinse with hot water and some leftover cooked small pasta.}

With Cooked Small Pasta + Four Bean Mix + Shredded Cheese

{What you’ll need to make this are 1 packet of Heinz Squeeze & Stir mix with enough water to achieve the pasta sauce consistency i.e half of 1/3 cup boiling water, 2/3 cups of uncooked macaroni or small pasta of your choice, cook and drain and a handful of shredded cheese}

Good To Know:-

  • No added colours or flavours
  • No preservatives
  • Low in fat, 98% fat free
  • Suitable for vegetarians
  • Available in individual 70g sachets for RRP$1.25 from all major supermarkets and independent retailers.

Note: This is not a sponsored post. 2 packets of Heinz Squeeze & Stir were provided to me for editorial consideration. The rest of the sachets I bought with my own money.