Ham & Cheese Wholemeal Buns

I was sneezing and sniffing in office on Monday. The mucus just didn't stop. The more water I drank, the more mucus there was. So the following day, I decided to take a day of medical leave and stay home to rest. I also felt flushed. A day off from work was really good. My helper cooked pork rib porridge and was one of the best porridge I've taken for many months now! That plate of porridge really perked me up.

With more strength, I decided to bake buns for breakfast the following day. I made ham & cheese wholemeal buns. As it was a last minute bake, I didn't use the pre-fermented dough, which I usually do. I was glad the buns turned out really nice despite being wholemeal. It stayed soft for the next two days! My eldest son had two in one go and he said the cheese was awesome!
Recipe for Ham & Cheese Wholemeal Buns, modified and translated from 《孟老師的100道麵包》


100g Wholemeal flour
300g Bread flour
30g Caster sugar
1/2 tsp Fine Rock salt
4g Instant yeast
140g Whole eggs
100g Water
30g Liv Unsalted butter, room temperature

10 Slices ham

10 Slices cheddar cheese (I used President Cheddar. I like President cheeses very much)


1. Mix all the ingredients except butter in a mixer using a dough hook.
2. Once all the ingredients are mixed through and formed a dough, add in the unsalted butter.
3. Knead the dough well until window pane stage.
4. Cover it with cling wrap and leave it to proof for 80 mins in a warm place.
5. Lightly knead the dough to form a smooth round ball.
6. Divide the doughs into 10 pcs.
7. Roll each dough into a round ball and leave to proof for 10 mins.
8. Flatten each ball and roll out to an oval shape with a rolling pin.
9. Cut each slice of ham and cheese into half, forming two smaller rectangles.
10. Place the ham and cheese vertically and roll it up like a swiss roll. Pinch both ends to close.
11. Slice the dough half way through into half, not completely cutting it through.
12. Let it proof for a further 40mins.
13. Brush it with egg wash.
14. Bake them in a preheated oven of 190C for 15mins.
15. Let it cool completely before storing in an air-tight container.

Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

It's been a while since I baked cookies. Weirdly, I'm not a great fan of cookies, but I do like cookies once a while though. I like cookies to go with coffee. And, that's about it...

Something healthy to chew on. Chewy Oatmeal Raisins Cookies was I thought will go with coffee.
Recipe for Chewy Oatmeal Raisins Cookies, adapted from Martha Stewart.
Makes approx. 2" 20 cookies


1 1/2 cups Rolled oats (not quick-cooking)
1/2 cup Plain flour
1/2 cup Raisins
1/4 cup Nibbed almonds, toasted
1/2 tsp Baking soda
1/2 tsp Fine salt
6 (90g) tbsp LIV Unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup Dark-brown sugar, packed
1 large Egg
1 tsp Vanilla extract

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together oats, flour, raisins, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
  2. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, scraping down bowl as necessary.
  3. Add egg and vanilla; beat until combined. Gradually add oat mixture; beat just until combined.
  4. Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls, 2 inches apart, onto two baking sheets. 
  5. Bake in the preheated oven of 170C until cookies are golden brown but still soft, 15-16 mins, rotating sheets halfway through. 
  6. Cool 5 minutes on sheets; transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

Nutella Cake

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When I saw Annie's Nutella Cake, I was sold! Totally sold! I love Nutella. I love hazelnuts and chocolate. This is a combination made in heaven! Since I need to bake a cake for Mother's Day. This will be it.
Recipe for Nutella Chocolate Cake/Torta Alla Gianduja, modified from Annielicious.
(Source : Nigella Lawson's How To Be A Domestic Goddess book)
Makes a 9" cake

For the Cake
8 Small eggs, separated (if large eggs use 6)
Pinch of Salt
125g Liv Unsalted butter, soften
400g Nutella
1 tbsp Frangelico, Rum or Water (I used Barcardi Gold Rum)
125g Ground Hazelnut
100g Dark Chocolate, 66% cacao, melted

For the decoration
100g Whole Toasted Hazelnuts
250g Chocolate Ganache
1 tbsp Rum

  1. Toast hazelnuts in a preheated oven of 160C for approximately 10mins, or until it's slightly brown, or when you smell the fragrance of the hazelnuts. Let it cool completely before using. You may want to consider to make this a day ahead.
  2. Grind 125g of the cooled hazelnuts. Set aside. 
  3. Melt the chocolate using double boiling method, to allow it to melt over gently under indirect heat. Once chocolate begins to melt, stir it gently with plastic spatula. When almost all of the chocolate is melted, lift up the bowl from the saucepan and set it on the counter. Stir continuously until it is shiny, smooth and completely melted. Set aside and leave it cool before use.
  4. Prepare a 9 inch (springform) tin, greased and lined. I used a 9" removable base tin.
  5. In a bowl, beat the butter and Nutella together, and then add the rum, egg yolks and ground hazelnuts.
  6. Fold in the cooled melted chocolate, and set aside.
  7. In a large clean bowl, whisk the egg whites and salt until stiff, but not dry. 
  8. Then using a spatula, scoop a large dollop of egg white into the chocolate mixture. Fold the egg whites into the mixture by a third at a time. Mix well.
  9. Pour into the prepared tin and bake it in the preheated fan oven of 160C for 40-45 mins or until the cake centre is not wobbly.
  10. Let the cake cool on a rack completely before you un-mould them carefully. This was supposed to be a damp cake, but mine was a little dry.
For decoration:
  1. Mix in the rum into the chocolate ganache.
  2. Ice the top of the cake with chocolate ganache.
  3. Decorate it with the toasted hazelnuts.
  4. Let it rest in the fridge before serving.
  5. Cake keeps well in the fridge.

Mini Cinnamon Buns

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Lately, I was quite into cinnamon buns. I felt that I've not found the perfect recipe for cinnamon buns yet. So I tried recipe which I thought could be good. They are good, but I just felt, it's still not there yet, for me. So, it happened that I found this Ninety Minute Cinnamon Rolls which I told myself I had to try.

In the beginning, the dough was not quite easy to handle. However, after resting it, it was easier. I was able to roll it out to the size I wanted. I made many minis and it tasted fantastic. Well, as the name says - 90mins, I used double the time to make my cinnamon rolls. I will make this again, it didn't take as much time as the rest of the cinnamon rolls I made...at least for now.
Recipe for "Ninety Minute" Mini Cinnamon Rolls, modified from Allrecipes.
(Makes approximately 60 minis, or 18 regulars)


265g Whole milk
85g Liv Unsalted butter
200g Bread flour
410g Plain flour
10g Instant yeast
75g Caster sugar
5g Salt
90g Water
1 large Egg


150g Liv Unsalted butter
10g Ground cinnamon
160g Dark brown sugar
Some raisins (optional)


  1. Heat the milk in a small saucepan until it bubbles, then remove from heat. Mix in butter; stir until melted. Let it cool until lukewarm.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine 450g flour, yeast, sugar and salt; mix well. Add water, egg and the milk mixture; beat well. 
  3. Add the remaining flour, approx. 80g at a time, stirring well after each addition. Continue kneading until smooth, about 15 minutes.
  4. Cover the dough with a damp cloth and let rest for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, cinnamon, softened butter.
  5. Divide the dough into four. Roll out each dough into a rectangle.
  6. bread_cinnamon4
  7. Spread dough with butter/sugar mixture. Sprinkle with raisins if desired. (I sprinkled 2 doughs with raisins)
  8. bread_cinnamon5
  9. Roll up dough and pinch seam to seal. Cut into 15 equal size rolls and place cut side up in a tray (my tray was 13"x15") lined with parchment paper. Place them in the oven and let them rise until doubled, about 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 180C.
  10. bread_cinnamon6 bread_cinnamon7
  11. Bake in the preheated oven for 18-19 minutes, or until browned. Remove from the oven and let it cool in the tray.

Martha Stewart's Red Velvet Cupcakes

One of my blogger friend highly recommended this book- Martha Stewart's Cupcakes. I know many bakers/bloggers have already owned this book. I was hesitant to buy it at first as I have many other cupcakes recipe books. I had it in my "wishlist" though. Finally, when there was a 10% off from Books Depository, I jumped in at it and ordered this book.

First recipe I tried was the Red Velvet Cupcakes. Actually, I dislike using american measurements - cups. It would never seem accurate to me. I wonder how they can use such metrics for baking where everything needs to be precise. Anyway, I followed their cup measurements. -_-// Whenever I tried recipes outside Asian countries, I tend to reduce the sugars, by quite a fair bit. There was no exception in this case. The Red Velvet Cupcakes were dense and moist. The cream cheese frosting was good too! (Especially with the reduction of sugars!) It is not overly cheesy with a good blend of butters. The frosting was really smooth and silky. I love this cupcake! Give it a try too!
Recipe for Red Velvet Cupcakes, adapted from Martha Stewart's Cupcakes
Makes 24 regular cupcakes

2 1/2 cups Cake flour
2 tbsps Unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 tsp Salt
3/4 cups Caster sugar (original calls for 1 1/2 cups)
1 1/2 cups Vegetable oil
2 large Eggs, room temperature
1/2 tsp Red food colouring
1 tsp Vanilla extract
1 cup Buttermilk (1 cup whole milk + 1 tsp lemon juice)
1 1/2 tsps Baking soda
2 tsps distilled White vinegar

  1. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners.
  2. Sift cake flour and cocoa powder. Add salt and whisk together.
  3. With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, whisk together sugar and oil until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Mix in food colour and vanilla.
  4. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of buttermilk, whisking well after each addition. Stir together the baking soda and vinegar in a small bowl; add mixture to the batter and mix on medium speed 10 seconds.
  5. Divide batter evening among lined cups, filling each three-quarters full.
  6. Bake in a preheated oven of 180C. Rotate muffin trays half way through, until a cake tester inserted in the centre comes out clean, about 20mins.
  7. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes. Cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature, or frozen up to 2 months in airtight containers.
Cream Cheese Frosting
(12 oz) 340g Cream Cheese
(2 sticks) 227g Unsalted Butter
(4 cups) 100g Icing sugar, sifted
3/4 tsp Vanilla extract

  1. With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat butter and cream cheese until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.
  2. Reduce speed to low. Add sugar, in three batches, then add vanilla, and mix until smooth and combined, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. If not using immediately, frosting can be refrigerated up to 3 days in an airtight container. Before using, bring to room temperature and beat on low speed until smooth again.
  3. To frost the cupcakes, use a small offset spatula to spread cupcakes with frosting. Refrigerate up to 3 days in airtight containers; bring to room temperature before serving.