Related Posts with Thumbnails

A moment in life #40 - Flowers for my life

>> Friday, July 30, 2010

Flowers for my life #3

I do not normally have fresh flowers in my home since B. is slightly allergic to pollen. Alternatively, I enjoy searching for them in other people's garden or flower shops. Wild flowers, too, can be seen in various spaces...

A black & white set, something reflects my mood for the day. Calmer, despite feeling the weight of the week.

Flowers for my life #3

Thanks God for the weekend just around the corner. Have a great time :)


Quince and almond cake - Still in love with quince

>> Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Quince and almond cake

Winter and quince. This will be the combination that I will long for once these colder months pass by. I will miss the lovely decorative yellow skin fruits in my fruit bowl. I will miss the perfume of poached quinces lingering in my kitchen. I will miss the deep red color of the slowly-poached fruits. I will miss the warm bowl of quinces and their sweet spiced syrup, with a dollop of yohgurt almost every night.

So many poached quinces, and I have not got around to re-do that stuffed quince recipe from Claudia Roden. I tend to remember that recipe after I poach the whole lot of quinces already. Ah. Never mind, poached quinces are B's and my favourites.

My sister, on the other hand, doesn't appreciate quinces that much. Perhaps when she grows older, she will appreciate fruits and vegetables a bit more. Like I did with most fruits and vegs.

In cakes, she seems to be okay though. It is indeed a very nice and simple tea cake. The base is nutty and buttery, which goes well with poached fruits. I normally make this cake with poached (or canned) pear halves. With quinces, it tastes even better. And the deep red color makes the cake so pretty, almost like a flower petal imprint.

Quince and almond cake

Quince and Almond Cake

Based on a recipe by the AWW

Poached quinces

Two quinces
1 cinammon
1 clove
Sugar syrup (equal amount of sugar and water)

The cake
185 butter, softened
110g castor sugar
3 eggs
185g almond meal
1/4 cup plain flour
2 tsp vanilla paste


Wash and peel the quince. Quarter the fruit and put in a heavy-based saucepan. Add in enough sugar syrup to cover the fruits. Don't throw away the skin. I put the skin in a small muslin bag and poach along with the fruit for fragrance. Anyway, add in cinammon and cloves. Boil the whole mixture, then simmer very slowly for 4 hours or until the quince has that rich red color. Cool

For the cake

Preheat oven to 165C. Grease 22cm springform tin, line base and side with baking paper.

Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg, one at a time, beating until combined between each addition. Stir in vanilla, almond meal and flour.

Spread the mixture into prepared pan, top with the quince pieces. Bake for around 50mins or until cooked through. Stand the cake for 5 mins. Remove from the pan and cool.

Syrup: After removing the quinces from the poaching syrup, continue to boil until the syrup thickens lightly. Serve this with the cake. Yum!

Flowers in my life


A moment in life #39- I heart Melbourne

>> Friday, July 23, 2010

Let me show you my Melbourne in winter. With style. And through the "eye" of my Iphone.

Melbourne in winter

And a bit of colors here and there to brighten up the day. I am a bit tired of the darker 'office colors' So when I went for a walk during my short lunch break, brighter colors caught my eyes...

Melbourne in winter

Melbourne in winter

Have a great weekend! ;)


Cottony-soft chiffon cake - {A Baking Experiment + Pictorial}

>> Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Cottony-soft chiffon cake

Ah! Asian bakers, and our never ending quest for softer, almost cottony-like cake!

With this recipe, I think we have come very close to that perfect chiffon cake. Almost perfect (see below).

The secret to the cottony-soft chiffon cake is in the method. If you take note of the ingredients, the proportion of liquid (oil + milk) is higher than other recipes, and the amount of flour is much less. These changes help to improve the texture of the crumbs, making it soft and moist.

To increase the amount of liquid in the cake, a trick is used – making a roux of flour and all the wet ingredients instead of just mixing them together like normal recipe. This additional step enables larger absorption of liquid, hence, a softer cake as a result. (The method is not new. The water roux approach to bread making has been very popular among home bakers. Most vow that it helps to produce much softer bread – see here.)

So, how does this cake fair? Well, it is undoubtedly the softest and yummiest chiffon cake I have made. It is moist and has that creamy taste resembling the popular Japanese cottony cheesecake (without any dairy!). Light-as-air, and I really mean it. The cake stays soft until the second day - we finish it rather quick!

Cottony-soft chiffon cake

The drawback? With a higher amount of moisture, the cake is quite hard to handle. I used the chiffon mould, and it sort of collapse a bit after taking out of the tin (this hardly happened with the normal chiffon cake – but then I forgot to raise the oven temperature properly prior to cooking, which might affect the result. Also, my kitchen was really cold at the time, too). Because of the soufflé-like texture, don’t bother to decorate the cake. It will collapse, most likely. Thankfully, the cake is lovely enough by itself, with a bit of whipped cream or fabulous wholefat yoghurt.

I will experiment with the new method a bit more later. ;)

Cottony-soft chiffon cake

Cottony-soft chiffon cake

Based on a Chinese recipe. I’ve changed it a bit to add more flavors to the cake (the original would yield a too eggy cake IMO). But the technique stays the same.


60g plain flour
55g fresh milk
50g corn oil
20g sugar

5 egg yolk

1 tbp vanilla paste
Zest of 2 lemon

5 egg whites
60g sugar (extra)
A pinch of cream of tartar (optional)

* make sure all the ingrdients are at room temp.


(1) Preheat oven to 165C

(2) In a small pan, add milk, corn oil and 20g sugar, bring to the boil and remove from the heat. Constantly whisk them together

(3) Sift the flour into the milk mixture, stirring constantly to form a soft paste. (See pic) - When the mixture is lukewarm, add in the egg yolks and mix well. Stir in lemon zest and vanilla.


(4) In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites with cream of tartar until glossy. Slowly add in the sugar (60g), spoon by spoon until soft peak forms.

(5) Fold 1/3 of the egg white into the yolk-flour mixture to lighten the mixture. Then, gently fold the rest of the eggwhites into the yolk-flour mixture. be careful not to deflate the batter.

(6) Pour the batter into an ungreased tube pan. Bake for about 30-35 mins. {Make sure to check after 30 mins - Mine took quite quick to cook through). Test with a toothpick - it should come out clean when the cake is done.

(7) Take the cake out of the oven and invert the tin straightaway. Cool the cake in the pan completely.


(8) To release the cake: run a knife around the cake and gently release it from the tin (the cake might collapse a bit). Serve with cream or yoghurt.


+) This is the result from a Vietnamese baker who loved this recipe as much as I did! PIC (Link in Vietnamese, but just marvel the result ;))

+) Another factastic result - via yumsiilicious

+) Recipe taster's interpretation


Fry bread taco with Mexican spicy meatballs {Taco Party #IIP}

>> Sunday, July 18, 2010

Fry bread taco with Mexican spicy meatballs

So this is the time of the month again for International incident party, and the theme of the month is Taco.

And I have to say this. Taco is the new food porn in this house.

Yeap, that’s truth. Ever since I made the taco noodles for the last IIP, instant taco seasoning has become a staple in my house. We have grown to love the flavour despite the unfortunate lack of Mexican cuisine presence in Australia.

Fry bread taco with Mexican spicy meatballs

While researching for taco, an image popped up and captured my fancy. Fry bread taco. Why didn’t anyone tell me about this before? All that spicy delicious topping, on a piece of fried bread. That must be delicious.

The fried bread, I can guarantee, is a winner. It has beautiful chewy texture of fried yeast dough. The good thing is the dough is yeast-free, so it can be whipped up very quickly without the long wait.

As for the filling, one can go for the normal mince meat topping. I have chosen to make these spicy Mexican meatballs from a cookbook called Mexicali Rose. It’s a strange Australian cookbook on Mexican cuisine. Strange, since for us in the land of down under, the most familiar form of taco comes from either Taco Bill or the readily made packages (yes, Australia is a sad land for taco related stuff). I can’t say that the book is inspiring, but it hits the Mexican flavours spot on without too many strange ingredients. For that, I’m grateful. (Also a big thank to my lovely blog friend Neil who introduced me to this book!).

Fry bread taco with Mexican spicy meatballs


This dish is lovely with any form of bread actually. You need about 1 to 1.5 taco seasoning packages here. Adpted from mexicali rose. Serves 6-8.

1kg lean beef mince
1 red onion, finely chopped
1/3 cup finely chopped corriander
1 egg
2 tbp taco seasoning
Salt + pepper
1 red capsicum, halved, deseeded and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tbp taco seasoning (extra)
1/2 tbp cumin powder
2 tsp cayenne pepper (to taste)
1 x 400g can cherry tomatoes {if you like more sauce, use 2 cans)

Combine the mince, onion, corriander, egg and taco seasoning in a bowl. Add seasoning. Roll the tablespoon of mixture to a bowl (I made mine quite small). Repeat.

Heat a bit of oil in a frying pan. Fry the meatballs until cooked and golden.
In the same frying pan, take out the burnt bits, and add onion, garlic, red capsicum. Stir for around 3 mins or until the capsicum is soft. Add 2 tbp taco seasoning, cumin powder and cayenne pepper. Stir in the tomato. Reduce the heat and simmer a bit. Add the meatballs and simmer further until the sauce just coats the meatballs.

Fry bread taco with Mexican spicy meatballs


Adapted from here. I’ve changed the ingredients and method a little to ensure the dough “pops” up more when being fried. Highly recommended recipe. You can even just eat the bread plain with a sprinkle of zataar. I did.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup milk powder
1 cup water + a bit more
4 cups oil for frying, or as needed

In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, milk powder, baking powder, and salt. Stir in water and mix until the dough comes together. Add more flour if necessary to be able to handle the dough. On a floured surface, knead the dough until smooth, at least 5 minutes. Let the dough rest for 10 minutes.

Heat oil in a large, deep heavy skillet. Oil should be about 1 1/2 inches deep. Put a small piece of dough in the cold oil. The oil is ready to fry when the dough sizzles and becomes golden brown.

Break off 3/4 cup sized pieces of dough, and shape into round disc. Use a rolling pin, roll the dough to 1/4 inch in thickness.

Fry breads in the hot oil until golden on both sides, turning only once. Drain on paper towels.

SERVE: top the fried bread with meatballs, lettuce and the condiments you like (sour cream, pickled chillies, guacamole etc.)

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{A note to myself} – Photography #1

>> Saturday, July 17, 2010

When I can (i.e. if time allows), I’ll post a small note, photography and/or food styling related. I’m no pro photographer, but this is how I learned from my experience and all.

Let’s start with the photos from my latest post – rhubarb and strawberry cobbler.

These shots was taken with natural light from my large balcony door and a reflector (using reflective wrapping paper). The light was diffused by the blind.

Simple natural set up

Props: second-hand rules! All of them, except for the background stuff, were from various second-hand shops in Daylesford. The brown background is the wrong side of my odd placemat, and I’ve used a blue chiffon scarf here for some soft blue texture.

I really like the rose-pattern vintage tin that I discovered in my MIL’s storage room. I’ve used it as a vase in the past, and it looks absolutely gorgeous.

The blue vase, tiny, pretty. And more, free of charge!


That's it for me now :). Have a great weekend, everyone!


Summer in winter. Recipe: Rose-scented rhubarb and strawberry cobbler

>> Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Rose-scented rhubarb and strawberry cobbler

Australians are undeniably lucky when it comes to fruit produce. We are deep in winter, yet, lovely red and vibrant rhubarb and strawberries are available. Together with the some gorgeous sunny days of late, they remind me of summer. Only better without that scorching heat.

When I bought rhubarb from the market last week, I thought of doing something extra special with the veg. A lot of ideas (pie, cheesecake, mousse etc.), but then I settled on a simple cobbler which I chanced upon Jamie’s blog. Nothing fancy, just a simple dessert that lets the fruit shine.

For a lot of you, simple desserts like this are part of growing up. Johanna recently shared some wonderful memories of her grandmother, together with a fabulous looking rhubarb and apple sponge cake. For me, someone with Asian background, baked goods are not part of my childhood. But I and my family here embrace these with much love, and slowly making them part of our family tradition.

So here is the recipe that I’ve adapted. I’m not a big fan of rose water, but the floral scent goes particularly well with rhubarb and strawberries.

Rose-scented rhubarb and strawberry cobbler

Rose-scented rhubarb and strawberry cobbler

Adapted from Doriee Greenspan via Life’s a feast


For the filling:
300g-400g fresh strawberries, washed and quartered
3 – 4 fat stalks rhubarb, trimmed, peeled and cut into ½-inch slices
2/3 cup sugar * (Adjust depending on the sourness of your fruits)
1 Tbs cornstarch
1/2 tbp to 1tbp rose water, to taste

For the cobbler dough:
1 + 1/2 cup plain flour
3 Tbs packed light brown sugar
2 tsps baking powder
½ tsp salt
90g unsalted cold butter, cubed
½ cup whole milk


Preheat the oven to 180°C. Butter an 8-inch square baking dish.

Prepare the filling:
Mix the prepared strawberries and rhubarb together in a large bowl. Sift the cornstarch over the sugar and stir to combine. Sprinkle over the fruit and toss until the dry ingredients are evenly coating the fruit. Toss the fruit often while you prepare the cobbler dough.

Prepare the cobbler dough:
Put both flours, the brown sugar, baking powder, salt in a large bowl. Stir or whisk to blend. Add the cubes of butter and, using only your fingertips, quickly rub the butter into the dry ingredients until incorporated and the mixture resembles coarse meal or wet sand. Working very quickly, add the milk and stir with a spoon or fork until well incorporated and you have a smooth dough. The dough should be light and fluffy, so don’t overwork.

Pour the prepared fruit into the buttered baking dish. Using a tablespoon, place equal-sized heaping tablespoons of dough in rows on top of the fruit.

Bake for 35 – 45 minutes until the cobbler dough is puffed up and golden and baked through. The fruit should have created a thick juice which will be bubbling up around the puffs of dough when it is done.

Serve warm, at room temperature or even chilled with cream or custard. I served the cobbler with rose-scented honey sweetened light cream.

Rose-scented rhubarb and strawberry cobbler

This post is submitted to Weekend Herb Blogging, a weekly event organised by Haalo of Cook almost anything at least once. Our current host is the ever lovely Susan of Well-seasoned cook.


Delicious Vietnam #4 Announcement

The roundup for Delicious Vietnam #3 is up! Come and read it here for a mouth-watering collection of recipes. Thanks to Anne and Mike for organising!

Now, onto Delicious Vietnam #4, please welcome our new host, Bonnibella.

To participate to Delicious Vietnam, it’s simple.

If you are new to Delicious Vietnam, here’s a summary of the event along side with some rules and recaps of past editions.

You have until the second Sunday of August (US time) to post about anything related to Vietnamese cuisine – recipes, food writing, review or reflection.

In your post, please include the phrase “Delicious Vietnam #4” with the link to your host.

Please submit to your post by the deadline August 8th 2010, which is:

+) 12 noon, Monday, 9 August 2010 – Melbourne (Australia) time
+) 7 pm, Sunday, 8 August 2010 – Los Angeles (US) time
+) 9am, Monday, 9 August 2010 – Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh city time
+) To convert the date and time to your part of the world, click here.

Send your entries to
bonnibellablog [at]

with Delicious Vietnam #4 in the subject with the following details:

• Your Name
• Your Blog Name/URL
• Your Post URL
• Your Location
• A photo (optional): 300px wide

Looking forward to next month round up!


{Product Review} - A gluten-free pizza experiment

>> Monday, July 12, 2010

Gluten free pizza - the experiment

A while back, I received some gluten-free products from Vitarum to try out. There were quite a variety, but so far I have only tried two products - The pancake mix and the bread mix.

{The Bread Mix}

In general, I really like the bread mix. Being gluten-free, it consists of ingredients like soy and rice flour and some binding ingredients.To get the white loaf, yeast and some water are added.

I did a small experiment with the recipe. Instead of baking the normal white loaf, I've decided to turn it to pizza dough. For those who has read this blog for a while, I'm quite particular with my pizza dough. The one I use generally takes two days to make - I like to let my pizza dough rise slowly in the fridge for extra flavour.

So what I've done was to apply similar method to the gluten-free dough, i.e. let it rise slowly overnight in the fridge. And it worked, beautifully. As you can see from the photos - I got quite nice crunchy crust. Texture-wise, it was quite nice. A little more 'sticky' than the normal pizza dough. But the pizza goodness was there.

The topping from the photos was really simple, 'off-the-fridge' cooking style. Organic tomato paste, thinly slices of sucuk (Turkish/Middle Eastern spicy sausage) and cheese.

{The Pancake mix) - Not photograph

After the successful pizza dough experiment, I was a bit disappointed with the pancake mix. Mine turned out thick, sticky and not really appetising. One thing I like about the bread mix is the freedom to create different kind of dough from the mixture of flour. The pancake mix is a bit more 'commercial' where only milk is added since there's egg powder and other flavours in the mix. Not a big fan! I prefer something more natural.

{Recipe} - Basic gluten-free pizza dough

Gluten free pizza - the experiment

The recipe is really easy, but the dough is very sticky to work with. Don't bother stretching them or anything, just oil your hands, and shape the dough pieces to a rough round shape.

1 packet of Vitarium Gluten Free Bread Mix
2 tablespoon olive oil
7g instant yeast
420ml warm water
1 tsp dried rosemary

Topping: tomato paste, sausage slice, cheese

Prepare the dough ingredients by mixing all the ingredients together for around 5 mins using an electric mixer. (Or simply use your hands, the dough is sticky)

Put the dough in an oiled bowl, and let proof for about 1 hour. (Or, if you want to slow proof the pizza, put the dough in a bowl, cover and rest in the fridge overnight. The next day, take the dough out and let it return to room temperature before baking. This method tends to make a flavoursome dough)

Preheat oven to 220C.

Oil your hand. Divide the dough into portions. Gently shape the dough into pieces with rough round shape.

Spread the tomato paste, then arrange saussage or other toppings onto the pizza. Bake until golden. Serve hot.

If you are interested in gluten-free cooking, do check out the Gluten-free bake off here!


A moment in life #38- Winter Song

>> Saturday, July 10, 2010


Cold, windy. It's a soup weekend here for us in a corner of Melbourne.

If time permits, then perhaps a pie, or a cake. I don't know yet.

But more importantly, it's the World Cup final weekend! May the better team win. (I don't know. Cannot decide to go for which team in the final yet!)

Have a good weekend everyone!


Delicious Vietnam #3. Recipe: buttery fried corn kernels

>> Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Ngô Chiên Bơ (buttery fried corn kernels)

Just a blink and now it is already July. Oh time, you are playing with me right? I still have tons of resolutions from the beginning of the year, which I have not even got close to...

Never mind. One thing I am proud of so far is the start of Delicious Vietnam. After the first two months, I feel rather good. Delicious Vietnam has become a point of reflection for me.

Lately I’ve been playing some old Viet music. By old, I mean really old, something can be classified as vintage since most of it were from the pre-1975 era. (1975 is an important mark in Viet history, both politically and culturally). For me, music from that era is beautiful. The lyrics are romantic, reflecting the French influence at the time. Melody wise, it’s interesting – there is a blend of both western and traditional rhythm.

Such music, though, is not my sister’s cup of tea. That is fine since my sister and I are quite different. So different some say we don’t look like siblings. But I tell you, at least we have something in common – the love for Viet food. We can actually spend hours talking about our favourite food, from the dishes that our mom and grandmothers cook to those street snacks in Hanoi.

This crispy corn kernel dish is one of them. Known in Vietnam as “ngô chiên bơ” (literal translation: deep-fried corn in butter), it is a relatively new snack that appears in recent years. It is deep-frying goodness – crunchy, buttery, sweet and salty corn kernels. Kids (and ehem.. young/old adults) love ‘em.

Of course, hardly any Vietnamese would eat anything deep fried in pure butter. The buttery flavour comes from the use of custard powder and a tiny bit of butter (or margarine) in the oil. This is a favourite way of ‘butter-frying’ corns and potato chips in Hanoi. And I tell you it’s just purely delicious. My sister is a happy girl whenever she finds this on the table.

There are still a few days left for Delicious Vietnam #3! Do join us! And the host of this month is Anne and Mike of Budda Bellies. Information can be viewed here!

Ngô Chiên Bơ (buttery fried corn kernels)

Ngô Chiên Bơ {buttery fried corn kenels}

Ngô = corn; Chiên = deep-frying {this is a southern Vietnamese word); and is butter! This is a great snack, or can be served as part of an Asian meal.

Use fresh corns if available. Otherwise, frozen or canned corn kernels are your best friend (edit: - skip the boiling part). The ratio of custard powder : cornflour is around 1:1 ~ adjust depending the moisture of the corn.


4 fresh corn cobs, clean, and separate the corn kernels

About 1/2 cup custard powder

About ½ cup corn flour

Salt + pepper + chilli powder

Oil to deep fry

50g butter

Some spring onion, green part only, chopped (optional)


Boil the corn kernels in salted water for around 4 minutes. Drain well and cool.

Mix together custard powder and corn flour. Add in some seasoning (salt, pepper, chilli powder), and mix well with the corn kernel. Set aside for 3-4 few minutes.

Do another coating of flour mixture with the corn kernels. ( I didn’t have time to cool my corn properly, so the flour coating was not great. Better flour coating = crunchier result)

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Heat large amount of oil and the butter in a deep saucepan. Add in two-three kernels. The oil is ready when the kernels are “fried” and golden. Now add in the corn mixture. (Depending on how large your pan is, fry the corn mixture in 2-3 batches).

Once the corn is golden, take out and drain. Taste and season. Serve hot.

One reader of this blog emailed me a list of questions about the recipe. I think it’s good to answer them here to benefit everyone.
I would have to apologise if my recipe writing is not that clear - I'm not a pro ya know? Any meaningful question is welcomed. I'll try my best to answer :)
(1) Custard powder
In Vietnam, we refer to a certain brand of custard powder called “Bot Su Tu” (Lion brand flour). It’s essentially custard powder.
The one I refer to is what common in Australian supermarket – made out of wheatened corn flour, a bit of vanilla and yellow food tint. I’m not sure if the custard powder found in another country is different?
If you cannot find custard powder, use extra corn flour, and a bit of vanilla.
(2) Butter + oil together – “Since butter has lower burning point, will it burn?” – Yes, that's true. But I use quite a low amount of butter compared with large amount of oil, so it’s not so bad. If you are concerned with this, fry the corn mixture in oil, then drizzle with melted butter as the reader suggested.
(3) You used Chilli powder, why does your dish had nice golden color? Well, I just use a bit of the normal chilli powder – not a lot so it doesn’t affect the appearance of the dish as such. I also tend to season the corn more after frying, too.
(4) Do I use white pepper? – Yes.
(5) Does chilli powder overwhelm delicate corn flavour? Uhm, no, not for me. But this is personal preference.
(6) Other flavouring? Like garlic, tarragon, lemon zest etc.? – I’m sure any flavour can be experimented. In the Vietnamese kitchen, we don’t have access to tarragon or use lemon/lime juice to flavour our fried food as such.
(7) “Dry the corn kernel first, then dip in flour”? But moisture help to adhere flour to the corn.
That’s right! I didn’t say dry actually, but drain the corn kernels well so they don’t take on too much flour.
Hope this helps a bit!

Ngô Chiên Bơ (buttery fried corn kernels)


Weekend Herb Blogging #240 - the roundup

>> Monday, July 05, 2010


I have the pleasure of hosting Weekend Herb Blogging #240. This event was originally created by Kalyn, and is now under the care of Haalo from Cook (almost) anything at least once.

As usual, there are a vast variety of ingredients and recipes. Without further delay, let’s all enjoy the roundup.

I have organised the roundup based on order of entry, with the main ingredients in braskets, and the name of the dish. Enjoy!

{Daikon leaves} - Cauliflower, Radish Leaves and Tomato Spiced Curry


"I only discovered recently that these leaves packed power! Leaves: Vitamin A is 3x more than Green Vegetables? Vitamin C is 10x more than lemon? Also, the leaves are high in Calcium, Iron, Beta-carotene and Vitamin B. "

{Various green herbs} - Green goddess dip


"This recipe captures the fresh flavours of summer well and is a great little dip to serve at a party or BBQ. It tastes herby and fresh, and the saltiness from the anchovies leaves you wanting more."

{Sage} - Zucchini and Sage Patties


"You can prepare the batter for the patties in the morning, cover it with a film and fry just before serving."

{Kumquats} - Kumquat oil


"The smooth skin is delicately pockmarked with a fine pattern of light and dark orange hues, with the dark, wet spots masking pores. A gentle squeeze results in the essential oils coming out of the fruit, sometimes as mere drops and sometimes as a spray. The skin is thick, housing pulp renowned for its juiciness and tartness. "

{Jicama} - Celebration Crostini


"Not familiar with Jicama? It is a delicious, healthy legume cultivated in South America and, whether raw, boiled, mashed, fried, or baked, its versatility allows for even the pickiest eater to enjoy its starchy crunch. Perfect for salads, salsas, and vegetable platters, Jicama is also a great substitute for water chestnuts. Brilliant!"

{Spinach} - Nilaga with spinach {A Filipino dish}


"Probably the easiest Filipino dish, Nilaga (boiled) is usually found
in every Filipino home. Everything is boiled in a big pot and cooking
time varies on the ingredients. Beef or pork as meat with choice of
the ribs, pata (leg) or brisket part. Common vegetables used are
potato, cabbage and pechay (bok choi). Others also use carrots,
malunggay and in my case, spinach.

{Dills} - Dilly Beans


A lovely pickle

{Lemon} - Lemon Slice


"...when lemon juice meets the magic of condensed milk and marie biscuits in lemon slice, I must have a piece... Lemon slice is a classic Australian slice that every housewife made when I was growing up. "

{Rosemarry} - Pasta shells with Broccoli, rosemary and pine kernels


Rosemary with its silvery needle like foliage is the one herb that I can rely on pretty much all year round as it grows quite happily in my garden, and here it is again in this pasta dish.

{Cilantro} - Cilantro and pumpkin seed pesto


" OMG. This was amazing. Seriously, seriously amazing. You could use this on anything, it could go on grilled fish, or chicken, or meat. It could be used as a salsa over nachos or tacos. Stirred into pasta or to dress veggies. Or you could simply stand at your counter and just spoon it into your mouth, while you pretend that you are just tasting it to make sure it’s seasoned right. "

{Strawberry + Blueberry} - Red white blue dessert


"a simpler fruit and cream dessert..." that fits for any celebration

{Apricots} - Puff Pastry Tart with Apricots and Cheese


"It's apricot season in Italy and recently I found them pretty good, maybe it's a lucky year!... When I was a child I was told to eat as much as I liked because they were the magical fruit of youth ..."

{Black truffle} - Truffle Risotto

Photobucket great to finally get to taste some of the Victorian truffles. This one is from Tibooburra, close by in the Yarra Valley. It's a real pity that scratch and sniff isn't possible because the aroma coming from this truffle is the nicest we've experienced in a long while and if this is an indication of the quality coming out the ground, the Victorian truffle industry is headed for a very good future..."

{Cranberry} - Cranberry ginger bar


"...create something that tastes like comfort food. Something to come home to..."

{Peach} - Peach Cobler


"This is the classic Southern-style cobbler that calls for spooning hot fruit onto a batter. The batter then rises up and cooks over the fruit, leaving it on the bottom in a rich syrup."

Claire - Chez Cayenne
{Borage flowers} - Pannacotta with Prune jam and Borage flowers


A lovely dessert to celebrate July 4th

{turmeric leaves and asam kandis} - Beef Rendang


"Rendang is one of well known dishes from Indonesia. It is originated from Minang or West Sumatra. Many Indonesians who live abroad don't have any patience to cook it. It takes hours to get the perfect rendang in taste and appearance. "

{Sugar snap pea} - Peas and carrots, with Indian spices


"Fresh green peas are one of the hallmarks of spring. The season is quite short, confined to the cool, moist conditions of spring and very early summer. However, some pod varieties tolerate more heat and can be found in the market until around the first week of July."

{Grapefruit} - Grapefruit syrup cake


“The citrus fragrance is there. And the syrup does have that tangy goodness, giving the cake a sweet-sour balance. A simple cake that is perfect with a warm cup of tea.”


Hope you guys enjoy the roundup as much as I did. Thanks everyone who participated. If I miss any entry, please let me know.

***EDIT*** For next week, our host will be Cinzia from Cindystar.

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