May 302011

Nope, your eyes aren’t playing tricks on ya.

This is, indeed a doughnut with purple-ish hue.

How, you may ask.

Clearly, if you know me well.. you’ll know food coloring isn’t the answer. ;)

Yup… That’s right!

It’s purple sweet potato (AGAIN!). :P

So how is this different than the kuih keria i made previously?

I’d say, VERY.

For start, this is the kind of doughnut which you can find almost everywhere at shops/cafes/bakeries that sell doughnuts. You know, the yeasty type — soft and fluffy that comes with assorted toppings.

Secondly, even though sweet potato is used here, it doesn’t taste of it at all. Not even subtly. What it does is, it merely lends its colour to fancify the doughnut aesthetically. Of course, as some of us may have known, sweet potato is also crucial to add more bite to the doughnut’s texture and as well as a natural softener agent.

If you are anything like me who dislike your doughnut overly soft — almost cloud-like, adding sweet potato (though unheard of — i came up with this meself. hahaa!), pumpkin or potato is a must!

To be honest, this is my very first time making these wicked wheels-like snack, so… funny and strange shapes are part of the parcel that came with it. *grin*. Longish, lopsided, senget, oval ….. you name it, i might just be able to find it for you from the stack. Errrmm, actually, you can check it out yourself from the photos. You don’t even need to squint your eyes or stare hard because it’s so darn obvious. Lol!

As much as i love these heavenly doughnuts, trust me, i really do dig doughnuts, i shan’t make them again.

Mainly because to me, doughnuts and bestie are 1.

Whenever i think of bestie + her specialty (food), i’d think of her doughnuts. So, for now… this will be my first and last attempt. If i ever do have cravings for doughnuts, all i need to do is to pick up the phone and dial!

Yes, i’m quite blessed like that. *wink*

Chocolate Sweet Potato Doughnut with Almond Bits

(inspired from famous cuisine no.64)

250g bread flour
10g custard powder
1/2 tsp salt
15g caster sugar
125ml cold water
4g instant yeast
50g sweet potato (steamed, mashed)
20g butter

melted chocolate
almond bits, toasted


1. Combine bread flour, custard powder, salt, caster sugar, cold water, instant yeast and sweet potato puree in a mixer. Beat until a dough is formed. Add in butter, continue beating until a smooth dough is formed.
2. Leave dough in a warm place to proof for 40 minutes.

3. Roll out the dough and use cutter to cut out ring shapes. Leave to proof for 35 minutes.

4. Deep fry the proofed dough in hot oil until golden brown.
5. Coat the doughnuts with melted chocolate and sprinkle with almond bits. Serve immediately.


I’m submitting this to Aspiring Bakers #7 — Chocolate Delight hosted by DG from Tasted & Tested.

if you worry about the doughnut’s texture after adding these natural softener agent, do check out the texture here. photo usually says a thousand words!

Very OT + rant – There is so much to do everyday! Needless to say, i have been running around very much like a headless chicken lately. Just when i thought that i might be free-er after the exam. :(

And it seems like i’m the only one out here complaining about being busy. But then, not many bloggers have got 3 uber active young boys….. and… school holiday has just commenced!

* recipe featured at Yummly!

May 252011

I believe there are quite a handful of people who still love receiving snail mails in this era of information technology where smart phones (what’s app & viber) and internet rule (skype, email, twitter).

I, for one.. am such.

I heart handwritten cards and letters. I like seeing friends’ and family members’ handwriting. To be honest, apart from my immediate family, bestie and ex-school mates, i have no idea how my other friends’ handwriting look like, especially friends whom i made post-secondary school. Heeee!

Do you?

For some unknown reason, i still go whoaaaaaa, nice handwriting! whenever i see some gorgeous ones and i do make it a point to put in extra effort whenever i’m writing cards or letters to friends and family. :)

The other day when i received a surprise gift from the charming and dashing looking John @ (sorry ladies but John’s taken), the first thing i looked out for was not the gift but the lovely card inside! Sure, i could check out the handwriting from the addy on the envelope, but you know.. i just like to double confirm with the card. Heh. For a guy, i must say, John has got pretty neat and artistic — not surprising.. i mean, check out his stunning photos man! — handwriting. A little cutesy too, if you will. Hahaa!

Besides the thoughtful gift, a lovely card with an even lovelier note in it, i was in for another surprise!

See the very adorable ladybirds in the photos?

They came with the card! Many many of them! So cuteeeeee!!! (errrrr, do pardon my many many many many exclamation marks! people bery happy mah!)

Needless to say, i was in happy mood for the rest of the day, grinning silly like a mad woman. :P

During this period where Singapore is hit with a mini heatwave, i crave for cold noodles.

With a few slabs of salmon fillet in the freezer, i just had to borrow Donna Hay’s sesame crusted salmon idea for this anyhow-put-together noodle dish.

The result?

Friggin’ delicious!

It was sluurrrrppp, sluuurrrrpppp and more sluuurrrrrpppppppppp all the way. ;)

To date, i have whipped this dish twice and i do foresee myself cooking this again next week. Everything just goes so beautifully with each other… Perfectly cooked salmon, robust flavour from the freshly roasted sesame seeds, cold cold noodle together with crunchy fried nori! Aaaahhhh… Incredibly amazing!

For extra oommpphhhh, nanami togarashi or also known as shichimi togarashi and wasabi are a must!

Sesame Crusted Salmon with Cold Honey Soba

(serves 4 small eaters)

300g soba
1 tsp sea salt
3 – 4 x 150g salmon fillet with skin on
1 tbsp white sesame seed
1 tbsp black sesame seed

5 tbsp soy with dried bonito extract
3/4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3/4 tbsp sesame oil
2 1/2 tbsp honey

To serve
fried nori, optional
wasabi, optional
nanami togarashi, optional

katsuo atsukezuritsuyu (with dried bonito and dried mackerel extract)


1. Cook the noodles in a large saucepan of boiling water for 3-4 minutes or until softened. Drain, return to the saucepan with ingredient (A) and toss to coat.
2. Refrigerate noodles for at least an hour.
3. 15 minutes before meal, marinate salmon with sea salt for 10 minutes.
4. Place the sesame seeds on a tray and mix to combine. Press salmon, skin-side down, into the sesame seeds to coat.
5. Heat a large non stick frying pan over medium heat and cook the salmon, skin-side down for 3 minutes or so. Turn and cook for a further 2 minutes or until cooked to your liking.
6. Top noodles with fried nori, salmon and scallions.
7. Serve with wasabi and nanami togarashi immediately.

Note : if you dislike your noodles cold, just skip the refrigerating bit and you’ll have warm noodles with your salmon.

Can you say yums?

May 182011

French Concession at 7.30am

Writing this entry makes me smile.

Those were the days. Precious precious days!

There is no denying that i missed the boys. Like really, really missed them. One of the reasons i dread calling home whenever i’m traveling is that i’d end up crying upon hearing their voices on the phone, telling me how much they are missing me and how they can’t wait to see me again etc. Usually when that happens, i’d go into an hour (can be more or  sometimes, less) of quiet moment, sitting at one corner feeling really guilty for ditching them while i holiday away. Hmm… It’s not exactly the best feeling ever.

But if i were to say i didn’t enjoy myself during this trip because of that, i would be lying.

L to R : night view from gf’s place, her humble abode, me checking out the gelato place which was just a stone throw away from gf’s place and her very adorable baby boy!

The first few days in Shanghai were spent eating, shopping, eating and more eating!

While waiting for other friends (who arrived 2 days after me), the wonderful gf decided to bring me go shopping till i drop — upon request *wink*. And trust me, shopped till i dropped we did!

What i didn’t expect during this trip was the girlfriend’s 3 storey penthouse that came with a breathtaking view. I am not complaining actually because methinks her heated floor (even in the bathrooms) was so darn cool! Oh, and that 4 posted bed with many many pillows… Man, i really can’t ask for more!

However, what i had really looked forward to was her 7 storey French-Colonial Townhouse.  The gf didn’t inform me beforehand that she had moved so imagine my surprise when i was brought into her condo estate. I was disappointed to say the least. There goes my photo-taking opportunity. Oh well, my bad for not visiting her earlier.

L to R : 1. piping hot pao calling out to me but er, i didn’t cave in (!) 2. gf’s friend checking out eccentric (read: ah lian) looking boots 3. as much as i would love to try that morning snack that can be found on the road side, i didn’t 4. French Concession, again.

Everyday, the hor-mia (good life) gf wakes up only at 10am unless she has appointments or dates to go to. Otherwise, it’s 10am all the way! Not sure why but when i’m holidaying, i always wake up super duper early and i’m not even a morning person to begin with.

So waking up hours before the gf means i had plenty of time to do some exploring on my own. I took time to walk around the neighbourhood, clicking the camera away. Passing by the road side food stalls was fun! I made many stops along the way, staring at how the locals whipped up the food or you know, just paused, stared at the food and moved on. Surprisingly, i didn’t make any attempt to buy any food at all even when asked. Must be all the horror stories that i have been hearing! Importantly, i wasn’t about to give the stomach a chance to pull its stunt on me, just like how it did during last year’s Vietnam trip — my very first food poisoning episode. It was so bad that i lost 3kg in just a couple of days! *shudders*

I <heart> Tsingtao beer!

I’m not much of a shopper to be honest. I hardly go shopping and especially so during trips and holidays because time is too precious! (judge me not my dear shopaholic friends! :P) But lo and behold!

Shopping in Shanghai was good good good!

The gf and i kicked off the day at 10.30am and we didn’t stop till 6pm! We just hopped onto the bicycles and started exploring the little boutiques which she frequents. She called them her treasure shops. :)

From trench coats to boots. From legging trousers to bling bling top. From leather bags to leather belts. I bought them all. HEEEEEEEEEEeeeee!

In short, it was madness!

Shop assistants’ jaws practically dropped whenever we entered the boutiques with our loots. We had bags and bags on the bikes’ baby chairs and front baskets. Heck, we even had bags hanging on the handles! I really don’t blame the gf for rolling her eyes at me when we were shopping because at the end of the trip, i went home with luggages that weighed more than 40kg! (fyi, i went with just 15kg)

pssttt : if i were to shop like this thrice a week (no need daily lah yeah), i can skip all my exercises routine already! what a great workout….  *flex biceps*

At the end of our shopping day, guess what i did?

I called SOS.

Yes, that’s right. I dialed SOS’ phone number!


You see.. I had to. My cash was running low (i seriously didn’t know i could shop like this before i went!) and i simply had to call the gf who was flying in the next day to bring me more cash! Sure, i had 2 credit cards with me for emergency but you know what? Cash is king in China. FYI, there are many shops and restaurants that do not accept international credit cards. ;)

And that my dear friends, was only my second day in China — first day not counted since i arrived only at 4pm (but i did shop a weeeeee bit on that night after our gelato outing :P).

Scary huh?

French Concession, and again! — can’t help it. love the botak (bald) trees! :P