Monday, 19 August 2013

Durian Cake - not like you know it!


Yes it is DURIAN season here in Malaysia. Every corner of PJ and KL and probably the rest of Peninsular Malaysia will have a make shift stall selling the various types of Durian Kampung (Village Durians), Breeds from D24, 88, Musang King and the lot. I was always intrigued in using Durian as an ingredient in a cake rather than making it into frosting. Much like banana cake / bread where bananas are used to substitute sugar and or added for additional moisture, I used the durian pulp exactly for that purpose.


My first attempt at baking this was not much of a success following an existing recipe found on someone else's blog. Well, the picture was definitely a fantastic looking Durian Cake so I figured, eh, what's the harm right? But soon, I realised that the batter, after baking, was wet and did not rise as it should (despite using self-raising flour). So I decided last night to make my own using my own measurements and voila the results were great! So here's the recipe for all those who want to make it too :-)

Ingredients:
250g self-raising flour (sifted)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
200 to 220g of butter - softened at room temperature
150g caster sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup whole milk
310g durian pulp (this can be done a night before or when softening the butter at room temperature)

Method:
  1. First heat up your oven to 180 Degree Celsius. Then butter and flour your loaf tin and lay a piece of greaseproof paper. Set aside.
  2. Next, beat the sugar and butter together until pale and fluffy. Add one egg at a time, fully incorporating each egg into the batter before adding the next one.
  3. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together. You'd be surprised at how the salt adds another depth to the cake.
  4. Then add the dry ingredients and milk intermittently. Once incorporated, remove from the cake mixer and fold in the durian pulp.
  5. Spoon into the loaf tin, levelling it and then bake for about 50 minutes or until skewer comes out clean.
  6. TIP: 10 minutes before the cake is done, cover the cake with tin foil to avoid it from becoming too brown at the top. This also encourages the centre of the cake to continue cooking.
  7. Remove from the oven and let cool on a cooling rack for 5 minutes before removing from the loaf tin to cool completely.
  8. Serve with TEA!

I couldn't wait so I had a slice as soon as I could. And boy was it heavenly. So why not try this version out instead of always resorting to having a creamed cake? Certainly a lot healthier right? 

NOTE: the sugar content in the recipe is a lot lower than usual because of the natural sugars that the durian pulp has. So, this adds as a way to replace too much sugar in a cake recipe :)

Recipes becoming a norm,
The Innovativebaker



Sunday, 18 August 2013

Deutsche Supperclub Nummer Drei - Deutschland triff Osterreich (Deutsche Supperclub No 3. - Germany meets Austria)

Yeap! Deutsche Supperclub Nr. Drei is here and eagerly awaiting to serve up great food once more. This time Germany's close knit neighbour, Austria will also be highlighted through its cuisine and closely related ties shared between the foods both countries share.

So what is to be expected at the next Supperclub on the 21st of September? Here's the MENU:

Zum Starten:

Zwiebelkuchen
(Onion Tart) - A traditional dish served up during Fall.

Nuernburger Bratwurst mit Kartoffelsalat
(Nuerburger Sausages with Potato Salad) - A tradition in Germany to have at least some kind of Sausage

Haupgerichte:

Bierfleisch mit Rote-Rueben-Salat
(Beef braised in Beer with Beetroot Salad)

Wiener Schnitzel mit Pommes
(Pork Schnitzel with French Fries)

Zum Ende:

Sacher Torte
(Traditional Viennese Chocolate Cake with Apricot Compote and Rum Filling)

An all new menu, with a little Innovativebaker Twist here and there... just know you would not go home hungry... 

What are the details of the next Supperclub?

Date: 21st September 2013
Day: Saturday
Time: 8pm onwards
Price: RM96 (RM80 + booking fees on Plateculture.com)
Seats Available: Maximum 8 (first come first serve basis)

Book your seats now! 4 Seats have already been reserved... so book the remainder or wait til the next date gets announced :)

Bis dahin sage ich erst,
Die Innovatifbaeckerin




Friday, 9 August 2013

Roast Pork - nuff said!


The Roast Pork, probably the most sought after Chinese Roast there is next to BBQed Pork and Roast Duck. The Germans and similarly with the British, this dish also appears in their top of the list go to dishes for Sunday Roasts in Britain and every day meals in Germany (Yes...no kidding).

So I know many have asked how does one make this dish? I have had varying degrees of success with this one and I think it all depends on the cut of the meat, how big it is and how you have rolled it up. I think sometimes, leaving it flat does provide better coverage for the pork skin to crackle up better then rolling it up. Rolling only helps when you have a spit that rotate thus equally cooking your rolled up pork belly. Hence why the Germans call it Spiessbraten (Spitroast). Anyway, enough rattling on to the ingredients:

The general prefered cut of meat is Pork Belly. Ask your butcher to recommend the cut suitable for roasting, clean the skin, punch holes into the skin and scour the meat side.

Spice Mix for Chinese Roast Pork:

5 Tbsp five spice powder
5 Tbsp fine sea salt

Spice Mix for German Roast pork:
3 1/2 Tbsp sea salt
5 Tbsp of a spice pre-mix for roast meats that contains the following: cumin powder, coriander powder, garlic powder, onion powder, pepper

Method for both types of Roast pork
  1. Firstly marinate the meat by rubbing the spice mix on the meat side. Then the salt on the skin. Wrap in cling film or a ziplog bag and leave in the fridge for 24 hours. 2 hours is also ok though the meat may not be as flavourful.
  2. Take out the meat after the desired length of marinating and leave it to come to room temperature. Never roast the meat cold. It will contribute to uneven cooking.
  3. Heat up your oven to 180 Degree Celcius. Scour the pork skin with your knife but only half way.
  4. If you intend to roll your pork belly, then use kitchen twine. Tie the twine at one end first and use the twine to encircle the rolled up pork belly. Tie at the other end of the pork belly and cut remaining twine off.
  5. Sit the meat on the grill section of the roasting pan. This is the grill attachments that comes with a deep roasting pan. In the roasting pan, add about 2 to 3 cups of water. This will help with keep the meat moist when roasting.
  6. Next cover with tin foil. Then place in the oven to cook for about 2 hours. 
  7. After 2 hours, remove the tin foil and place it back into the oven for another 15 minutes before cranking up the oven to 220 Degrees to make your crackling. (Just before cranking up the oven, remove the kitchen twine to avoid it being burnt!)
  8. Then you will see the pork skin starting to pop, crackle and pop even more. This should take about 20 minutes give or take.
  9. Remove the roast pork from the oven and let it rest on the roasting pan first before serving. This is to encourage the juices to remain in the pork and not flow out of it.
  10. The pork oil and juices at the bottom of the pan can be used to make a sauce. Entirely up to you.
There you go! It is relatively easy to make. Just a long cooking period. But from what my diners and family members have said, this is a winner.......

The Innovativebaker 

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