Sunday, October 28, 2012

Mini Passionfruit Cakes

Leaving my current workplace for another job was the hardest decision ever but it was a pretty quick one, I must say! It never really hit me that my life was gonna change,for the better I hope, until last Friday. Initially, I cursed my mornings because I had to face certain people at work and deal with their immature way of handling things but things got better and I begin to learn how to ignore ‘them’. And along the way, I met and got close to a few amazing people. I am certainly gonna miss them but in life, you have to choose what’s more important in life in the initial stages of your career and build it. Now, I should stop the drama and focus what's more interesting for my blog, my mini cupcakes!

I made passionfruit cupcakes with vanilla buttercream & chocolate caramel macarons for my friends and mentor(s) as a Thank you token for their guidance and patience. I had a tub of passionfruit pulp sitting in the freezer for ages and found a wonderful recipe in Donna Hay’s latest magazine, her Spring issue. Everything she makes turns out beautifully! It’s almost foolproof! I wanted to beautify the cupcakes so I made frosting for the cupcakes but found it a little too sweet as a combination, so I would actually cut down on the sugar in the cupcakes if I am frosting the cupcakes the next time. The cupcakes itself  was very sweet when eaten alone. Maybe that's why, in the recipe, Donna only sprinkles icing sugar on top and have extra passionfruit pulp to go with the cupcakes to perhaps cut the sweetness of the cupcakes.

Anyway here’s the mini passionfruit cakes recipe I adapted from her magazine:

Passionfruit cupcakes:
200g unsalted butter, slightly softened
¼ cup (60ml) passionfruit pulp
165g caster sugar (reduce if you are frosting your cupcakes)
Rind of a lemon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 free range eggs
1 ¼ (185g) self raising flour, sifted
¼ cup (60ml) diluted yogurt/ buttermilk
  1. Preheat oven to 160 C and line mini muffin pans with paper liners.
  2. Beat butter until light and creamy for 5 minutes. 
  3. Mix passion fruit pulp and sugar.
  4. Add passionfruit sugar into butter and continue to beat for another 5 minutes.
  5. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. 
  6. Add vanilla extract & lemon rind. 
  7. Fold in sifted flour until well combined. 
  8. Fold in yogurt/buttermilk until well combined.
  9. Scoop batter and fill a piping bag fitted with a medium size plain nozzle. Or you can just scoop the batter into the muffin pan lined with paper cups.
  10. Fill paper liners with batter 2/3 full.
  11. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown on top.
  12. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

Vanilla/passionfruit buttercream:
250g unsalted butter
200g icing sugar
Enough passionfruit juice to make a thick sugar paste
Lemon yellow colouring,optional
  1. Make passionfruit paste by adding passionfruit juice with seeds slowly into icing sugar until you have a thick paste.
  2. Cream butter & colouring(if using) until creamy and fluffy. Add passionfruit sugar paste and continue to cream until combined and creamy.
  3. If it's too soft, place in the fridge for 15 minutes until firm and pliable.
  4. Scoop icing and place in a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle. Pipe as you like. You can decorate further with a passionfruit seed in the middle like the picture below. Place in fridge until 5-10 minutes before serving depending on the weather.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Eggless doughnuts

Since I started work in KL, Isetan Foodhall in KLCC is my place to shop for luxury-expensive-items at a much lower price compared to other supermarkets in KL. I mean it and this gives me the excuse to buy my favourite Queen's bread from their bakery. Next best thing to a brioche since I have not seen brioche here in KL. I forgot to buy a loaf back from Sydney. I am crazy like that. While paying for my loaf of bread the other day, a child passed a tray of doughnuts to her father and that made me crave for doughnuts but the line to pay was too long and I was rushing for my train so I convinced myself I can make better doughnuts for myself than buy them. Never got around making them until today because I have been busy and sick at the same time. Not fun! Feeling much better now so I decided to make myself sugary strawberry jam filled doughnuts! This time I made my doughnuts eggless because dad is vegetarian and he loves doughnuts as well!
Oh my sugary goodness of strawberry jam filled doughnuts!
This recipe is heavily adapted from my last doughnut recipe. My version of the doughnut recipe without eggs and it turned out remarkably awesome!!!!!=D

7g dry yeast
1 tablespoon caster sugar
30ml lukewarm whole milk
1 teaspoon plain flour

1 1/2 cups superfine flour
45g unsalted butter, melted
a pinch of salt
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon caster sugar
1/2 cup lukewarm milk

1 small jar of your favourite jam for filling
2 cups vegetable oil, for deep frying
extra caster sugar, for rolling

  • Combine (A) in a small bowl. Mix well. Cover and leave for 20 minutes until it froths up.
  • Mix the flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Make a well in the centre. Add the yeast mixture, then milk and melted butter. Using a whisk, slowly  incorporate the flour mixture and then, using a wooden spoon or spatula, mix until you have a smooth soft dough.
  • Cover with a tea towel and put in a warm place for 1 – 2 hours ( In Malaysia it took only 30-45 minutes) until it has doubled in size.
  • Dust your hands and an empty plate with flour. Scope a small ball of dough and roll the ball until smooth (not too long) then flatten the dough big enough to cover a small scoop of jam which you will spoon in the centre of the flatten dough. Place jam in the centre and small form a ball again and place the balls in the flour dusted plate. Once all completed, cover with a tea towel and allow it to rise again for 15-30 minutes until double in size.
  • Heat the oil in a deep frypan or saucepan to very hot, 175°C (350°F). There needs to be enough oil so that the donuts can float, at least to a 2 cm depth.
  • Fry the donuts (no more than 6 at one time) on both sides until golden brown. Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon, drain on paper towel and then roll in caster sugar.
  • Eat almost immediately.
It gave me around 20 medium size doughnuts! =)