Thursday, October 16, 2014

Polo Bun with Char Siew

Polo bun, Bo Lo Bao, or pineapple bun is a kind of sweet bread very popular in Hong Kong and Macau. Contradict to its name, it does not contain any pineapple at all. The name Bo Lo originated from the appearance of the bun. Checkered top baked to golden brown, this resembles the skin of an pineapple. After baked, the dome will become crunchy and crumbly, creating a nice contrast to the soft pillowy bread within.

There are many variation to this bun. Some added luncheon meat, red bean paste, custard cream as fillings for the bun. Personally, I love the one with Char Siew most. How about you?

Polo Bun
Makes 10-12 buns


Tang Zhong Starter Dough
  • 25g bread flour
  • 125 ml water
Bread Dough
  • 270g bread flour
  • 43g caster sugar
  • 4g salt
  • 4.5g milk powder
  • 5.5g instant yeast
  • 43g egg, beaten
  • 30g whipping cream
  • 27g fresh milk
  • 25g unsalted butter
  • 240g Char Siew (store bought or homemade)
  • 5 tbsp ABC Kicap Manis
  • 2.5 tbsp Shao Xing Wine
  • 2.5 tsp honey
  • 35g spring onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp sesame seed, toasted
  • 1/3 tsp five-spiced powder
Polo Toppings
  • 100g butter
  • 60g caster sugar
  • 180g cake flour
  • 55g egg
  • 10g milk powder
Cooking Directions
  1. For Tang Zhong, mix water with bread flour and cook over low heat in a pot.
  2. Stir constantly until it reaches 65 degree celsius or when it thicken (the time when you can see the bottom of the pot when stirring).
  3. Let tang zhong cool to room temperature before use.
  4. Mix all the ingredients under 'bread dough' (including tang zhong) except the butter. Knead until smooth and elastic (around 10 minutes).
  5. Knead in butter until fully incorporated (around 5-10 minutes).
  6. Cover the dough (you can use a clingwrap or pastry cloth; if you have none of these, just put it in a pot and cover with the pot cover) and place it in a warm place to let it undergo the 1st proofing, about 1 hour.
  7. Place the dough onto a clean floured surface. Punch down and divide the dough into 10-12 portions.
  1. In a frying pan, heat 1 tablespoon of sesame oil, stir fry spring onion until fragrant. Add in the remaining ingredients and toss well. 
  2. Divide the filling to 10-12 portions.
Polo Toppings
  1. Mix all the ingredients together.
  2. Divide the topping to 10-12 portions, roll round.
  1. Wrap a portion of filling into a portion of dough. Seal the edges.
  2. Flatten the topping using hand, place it on top of the dough.
  3. Use scraper or knife to draw the criss cross pattern.
  4. Let the dough proof for another 1-2 hours or until double in size.
  5. Brush with eggwash. Bake in preheated oven at 170C for 20-25 minutes, or until the top turn golden brown.



  • 高筋面粉 25 克
  • 水 125 ml


  • 高筋面粉 270 克
  • 細砂糖 43 克
  • 盐 4 克
  • 奶粉 4.5 克
  • 快速乾酵母 5.5克
  • 全蛋液 43 克 (大约 3/4 全蛋)
  • 忌廉(whipping cream 動物性鮮奶油)30 克
  • 牛奶 54克
  • 无盐牛油 25 克


  • 240克叉烧(商店购买或自制) 
  • 5汤匙ABC 甜酱 
  • 2.5汤匙料酒 
  • 2.5茶匙蜂蜜 
  • 35克青葱,切碎 
  • 1汤匙麻油 
  • 1小匙芝麻,烤过
  • 1/3茶匙五香粉


  • 100克牛油
  • 60克砂糖 
  • 180克低筋面粉 
  • 55g蛋 
  • 10克奶粉


  1. 高筋面粉和水放到锅里,开小火,不停搅拌。熬成浓稠的糊状,盛出待温度降至室温方才使用


  1. 把所有材料包括汤种(除了牛油)搅拌成面团,用手揉至面团光滑(大约10分钟)
  2. 加入已软化的牛油,继续揉约5-10分钟
  3. 把面团放在温暖处发酵至2-2.5倍大小(大约1小时)
  4. 用手按压面团,然后分割成大小均匀的10-12份


  1. 锅内热油,炒香青葱,加入其余的材料。
  2. 将内陷分成10-12份。

  1. 将所有材料混合在一起。
  2. 分割成10-12份,滚圆。

  1. 将一份叉烧包入一份面团里。收口。
  2. 一份菠萝酥压扁,放在面团上面。
  3. 用刮刀或刀画出十字交叉的图案。 
  4. 让面团发酵1-2小时或直到两倍大。 
  5. 涂上蛋液。在170℃预热烘箱中烘烤20-25分钟,或者直至顶部金黄色。

Monday, October 13, 2014

Oven Toaster Char Siew

Char Siew, literally means 'fork roast', is a popular dish in Singapore. Long strips of seasoned pork skewered with long forks and roasted until the sauce caramelised and slightly charred. It is usually sold alongside with roast chicken, roast duck, braised tofu and egg etc..

Char Siew is a very versatile dish, you can have it with rice, noodles, hor fun, or use it as fillings for bun or pao.

To make it the traditional way, you may need to char-grill it. However, a friend shared with me her 'short-cut' version which I find very suitable for home-cook. There is no need for char-grill, just a oven toaster will do...

The pork is cooked twice, once half-cooked in the frying pan and then finished off in oven to give the charred look. Indeed this is a very simple and convenient dish, because you can prepare it in advance and just toss it in the oven before serving. Whenever I make this, I made sure there are a lot of extra sauces. We use it to drizzle over the rice and the plain rice immediately taste much more appetizing. 

So how does the bright red color of char siew came about? Well, it could be the red fermented bean curd, red yeast rice wine, red yeast powder, red yeast rice reaidue, or simply, red coloring (which I believe is more commonly used nowadays). If you are not super fancy of the red color, I believe you can just skip it. 

This recipe might not show you the very traditional way of making char siew but it has the busy mom in mind. 

Char Siew (Simplified Version)

  • 200g pork collar, cut into 2 strips
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 4 tbsp ABC Kecap Manis (ABC dark sweet sauce)
  • 2 tbsp Shao Xing wine
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp 5-spice powder
  • 1/4 tsp red yeast powder (optional)
Cooking Directions
  1. In a sauce pan, heat sesame oil, add dark sweet sauce, wine, honey, 5 spice powder, red yeast powder and cook until sauce thicken.
  2. Add pork collar, stir to coat well.
  3. Bake in preheated oven at 190C for 10-15 minutes or until the sauce slightly caramelised.

  • 200克猪肉,切成2条 
  • 半茶匙麻油 
  • 4汤匙ABC Kecap Manis(ABC黑甜酱) 
  • 2汤匙料酒 
  • 2茶匙蜂蜜 
  • 1/4 茶匙5五香粉 
  • 1/4茶匙红曲粉(选择性) 

  1. 在一个平底锅,加热麻油,放入黑甜酱油,酒,蜂蜜,5香料粉,红曲粉,煮至酱汁变稠。 
  2. 加入猪肉,均匀裹上浆汁。 
  3. 放入已预热烤炉烤190℃ 10-15分钟或烤到略焦。

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Portuguese Egg Tart

On my previous post, I made Hong Kong style egg tart which uses short crust pastry. I have the tendency to repeat baking the same food again and again until it taste the way I want it to be. Needless to say, after weeks of eating Hong Kong style egg tarts I guess we will say sayonara to those tarts for quite a while.

It was only a few days ago, and yes, I am now back in business making egg tarts again!

Fret not, these egg tarts are of different nationality - the Portuguese! Loving those super crispy skin that produce loud crackling sound when you biting down the skin. The custard was soft and oozing out when the crispy puff skin break apart. This is no doubt the best Portugese egg tart that I have ever tried!
Recipe adapted from Layers, Baking with Gregoire Michaud

Portuguese Egg Tart
Makes 14 tarts


  • 250g cake flour
  • 50g butter
  • 3g salt
  • 20g sugar
  • 120g water
  • 100g lard (or ghee)
  • 210g heavy cream
  • 105ml milk
  • 75g sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/2 egg
Cooking Directions
  1. Rub flour and butter until sandy.
  2. Dissolve salt and sugar in warm water, add to flour.
  3. Mix and rest in the fridge for 15 mins.
  4. Roll the dough to 1cm thickness.
  5. Spread 90g of the lard/ghee over, fold the dough into half and chill for 30 minutes.
  6. Roll again to 1cm thickness. Make a *single fold. Chill the dough for another 15 minutes.
  7. Roll again to 1cm thickness. Make a *single fold. Chill the dough for 30 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, mix together fillings. Sieve the fillings to get rid of any lumps or bubbles.
  9. Roll the dough to 2mm thickness, spread the remaining 10g of lard/ghee over. Roll up the dough. (If the dough is too soft at this point, put the dough into freezer for 30 minutes before cutting)        
  10. Slice the roll to about 3cm thick. Lay dough flat.
  11. Press dough into mould.

  12. Fill the tart with filling and bake at preheated oven 230C for 25-30 minutes (I followed the temperature used in the recipe and the tarts turned up well, you may adjust the temperature accordingly for your oven).
* Single fold



  • 250克蛋糕粉
  • 50克牛油
  • 3克盐
  • 20克糖
  • 120克水
  • 100克酥油或猪油

  • 210克鲜奶油
  • 105毫升奶
  • 75克糖
  • 2颗蛋黄
  • 半粒蛋
  1. 捏搓面粉和黄油,直到沙粒状。
  2. 盐和糖溶解在温水中,加入(1)。
  3. 将面团充分混合和,放入冰箱里松弛15分钟。
  4. 将面团擀至1cm厚。
  5. 在面团表面均匀涂上90g酥油或猪油,对折,放入冰箱里松弛30分钟。
  6. 再次擀至1cm厚。做一次*单叠折。放入冰箱里松弛15分钟。
  7. 再次擀至1cm厚。做一次*单叠折。放入冰箱里松弛30分钟。
  8. 此时,混合内陷材料。过筛。
  9. 将面团擀至2mm厚,涂上一层10g酥油或猪油。卷起面团。
  10. 切卷约3cm厚,平放于塔摸。
  11. 按捏成塔形。
  12. 填注内陷。 放入已预热好的烤箱烤230℃25-30分钟(我是依照食谱给的温度烤来烤蛋塔的。如果有必要,请根据您的烤炉做调整)。

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Hong Kong Shortcrust Egg Tart

It was raining and thundering heavily today, but the smell and the warmth from baking the egg tarts are filling up the whole house. Impatiently, I was already waiting at the oven door for the timer to beep from the beginning!

The freshly baked egg tarts are irresistibly good. As the saying goes 'give, and you shall be given', we shared some with our neighbours and we were in return blessed with a big bowl of sayur lodeh. That is the joy of sharing!

Egg tarts come in many variations. In general, there are two main types of crusts: shortcrust pastry or puff pastry. The traditional ones are filled with egg custards but now the types of filling are endless. Chocolate tarts, green tea tarts, kiwi tarts... you name it, you have it. 

This is the traditional and most common egg tarts we see everyday, and it happens to be my favourite too. The warm and soft custard goes really well with the fine-textured, crumbly shortcrust pastry. No coloring, no additives, absolutely yummy!

Egg Tart 
makes 14 tarts

(A) Dough
  • 250g flour
  • 15g milk powder
  • 40g icing sugar
  • 170g butter
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 20g egg white
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
(B) Custard Filling
  • 3 eggs
  • 200ml milk
  • 65g sugar
Cooking Directions
  1. Mix ingredients (A) well to form dough. Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.
  2. Mix together ingredients (B), make sure the sugar is evenly distributed. Run the mixture through sieve.
  3. Remove dough from fridge, roll up to 0.8cm thickness. Using a round cutter slightly bigger than the diameter of your mould (just enough to cover the diameter of your mould), cut the dough.
  4. Place the dough in your mould and start pressing to spread it until it is enough to cover the inner part of mould.
  5. Trim off the excess dough from side.
  6. Pour in the egg mixture and bake immediately.
Tips: If you can't bake all the tarts at the same time, make sure you only pour in the filling just before baking, don't let the filling sit inside the dough while waiting for the previous batch to cook.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Salmon Perkedel (Salmon Potato Patty)

Mothering fussy eaters is no mean feat. After spending whole afternoon preparing a special meal, the last thing you want is to watch the kiddos spitting out or frowning at the food.

If you have fussy eaters at home, you will know that food that please them today might ended up getting thrown all over the floor the next day.  Their likings seems to be constantly changing and it is difficult to predict what they will want to eat. Therefore, I am constantly on the go in search for kids friendly recipes.

There will be times you feel defeated when the kid rejects all the food given. But, I always try to tell myself, ' It is my job to experiment on new food, and it is their job to experiment on their taste buds'. So, this is just part and parcel of being a mother, and of course, this stage shall pass.

If you are running out of idea what to prepare today, try this. So far, this is one of the most well-received dish by my fussy kiddos. They always ask for more!

Eat, drink, and be merry.

Salmon Potato Patty /Salmon Perkedel


  • 600g salmon fillet, steamed and flaked
  • 1 bunch of coriander, chopped
  • 1 bunch of spring onion, chopped
  • 2 russet potatoes, boiled and mashed
  • shallots, chopped
  • 2 egg yolks
  • a pinch of salt
  • few dashes of pepper
  • corn starch, to coat
  • ketchup, for dressing (optional)
Cooking Directions
  1. Mix ingredients (A) in a large bowl.
  2. Divide the mixture into a table-tennis-ball-sized patties, flatten slightly with your palm.
  3. Coat patties with corn starch and deep fry until golden brown. Serve hot with ketchup (optional)


  • 600克鲑鱼片,清蒸后掰碎
  • 1把香菜,切碎 
  • 1把葱,切碎 
  • 2粒土豆,煮成土豆泥 
  • 4粒葱头,剁碎 
  • 2个蛋黄 
  • 少许盐 
  • 少许胡椒粉

  • 适量玉米淀粉,用来裹在薯饼上
  • 番茄酱(选择性)

  1. 将(A)混合在一个大碗里。 
  2. 分成乒乓球大小的肉饼,撮圆,用手掌稍微压平。
  3. 锅里热1.5cm油。 
  4. 裹上玉米淀粉,放入锅里油炸至金黄色。
  5. 乘热享用,可配上番茄酱(可选)

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Korean QQ Mochi Bread Without Premix

What is Korean QQ Mochi Bread? Well, it is QQ (chewy), has crusty skin, and the interior is just like a puffed up mochi.

I was hooked up to these chewy little bread when I first tried it at Sun Moulin. Recently, I saw some premix powder selling at Korean food shop at around $10. I was very tempted but I ended up didn't buy it. However, it sparked up my interest to try making it from scratch in my own kitchen.

These little gems are really fun to make and nice to eat. They make the perfect afternoon snacks. You can easily play around with different flavors and sizes. I like to make bite sizes one, maybe because I tend to like things in their mini size. 

Within the first day of baking, it taste pretty similar to those selling at the bakery. So, enjoy while still fresh!

Korean Mochi QQ Bread

  • 180g glutinous rice flour
  • 20g tapioca starch
  • 8g milk powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 60g vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 120g water
  • 10g black sesame seed
  • 1.5 tbsp cheese powder
  • 1 tbsp green tea powder
  • 1 tsp sugar
Cooking Directions
  1. Put (A) in a bowl, mix together until dough formed.
  2. Divide the dough into 3.
  3. Add sesame seed into 1/3 of the dough, cheese powder into another 1/3 of the dough, and green tea powder with 1 tsp sugar to the remaining 1/3 of the dough.
  4. Roll the dough round (or pipe the dough through a piping bag with round piping tip if the dough is too sticky) and arrange them on baking sheet. Don't worry too much about the shape, it will fluff up during baking.
  5. Spray some water on the dough before bake if you like a more crunchy crust.
  6. Bake in 180C preheated oven for 20 minutes.

  • 180克糯米粉 
  • 20克木薯淀粉 
  • 8克奶粉 
  • 半茶匙盐 
  • 60克植物油 
  • 1个鸡蛋 
  • 120克水 

  • 10克黑芝麻 
  • 1.5汤匙芝士粉 
  • 1汤匙绿茶粉
  • 1汤匙糖

  1. 把(A)混合在一起,直到形成面团。 
  2. 将面团分成3份。 
  3. 其中一份加入芝麻,另一份加入乳酪粉,最后一份加入绿茶粉和糖。拌均。 
  4. 将面团用手撮圆(如果面团太粘,可用挤花袋挤出),排放在烤盘上。不必太担心面团的形状,烘焙时会变得稍圆。 
  5. 如果喜欢更酥脆的外壳,可在烘焙前洒些水在面团上。 
  6. 放入预热好的烤箱烘180℃20分钟。

Friday, September 5, 2014

No Coloring Added Basic Nutella Macaron

I have got to admit that making macaron is not one of my forte. I have tried 2 times before my first taste of success (and that was because I went for a macaron class ^^). My first two trials was using the French meringue method. I was trying to play smart by not aging my eggs but it didn't work out. Perhaps it will work out in drier climate but with the humidity in Singapore, I seriously doubt so. Then, I learnt the Italian meringue method from the class. After my first successful macaron, I still felt unsettled and my curiosity drew me back to try the French meringue method again. This time, I aged my eggs, and here they are! 

This is a really basic and simple macaron. I even saved my time from making the ganache by using nutella spread because I wanted all my focus to be on the macaron shell. I omitted all the artificial colorings and flavorings because those are simply not necessary.

Now, I make macaron every now and then when I have extra egg whites, which is actually more frequent that I have thought of. For instant, when I make Shanghai Mooncake, perkedel, or egg tart. 

I almost gave up on it but I am glad I didn't. Now I am having another batch of 2 egg whites aging inside the fridge. I think I am going to use some dark chocolate ganache for that!

Basic Nutella Macaron

  • 60g egg white, aged for 2 days (crack open the eggs, take only the white and refrigerate, covered)
  • 67g caster sugar
  • 87g almond powder, sifted
  • 80g powdered sugar
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder (optional)
  • 140g nutella
Cooking Directions
  1. Bring egg white to room temperature (remove the cover).
  2. Blend together almond powder, powdered sugar and cocoa powder. Sift the powdered mixture.
  3. Whisk egg white, add sugar in 3 stages. Whisk until the meringue reach stiff peak.
  4. Add 1/3 meringue into the almond powder mixture, mix well.
  5. Add all almond powder mixture into the remaining 2/3 meringue. Fold until the mixture turn lava-like texture (Draw a line in between and the mixture flow back slowly).
  6. Pipe the meringue on a baking sheet. 
  7. Bang the baking sheet on your palm or on the table for 2-3 times.
  8. Leave to dry for about 15 minutes. It should be dry to the touch.
  9. Preheat oven 200C. Turn off heat and put the macaron inside for 6 minutes. Leave the door ajar.
  10. Turn the heat to 140C and bake until the foot appear to your desired size (around 6 minutes).
  11. Turn the heat to 120C and bake for another 10 minutes.
  12. Cool macaron on wire rack. Spread with nutella and gently twist close two macarons.
  • 蛋清2个 (破开鸡蛋,只取蛋白,盖上冷藏两到三天) 
  • 67克砂糖 
  • 87克杏仁粉,过筛 
  • 80克糖粉 
  • 1汤匙可可粉(选择性) 
  • 140克Nutella酱 

  1. 从冰箱取出蛋清,回室温。 
  2. 杏仁粉,糖粉和可可粉用搅拌器搅拌均匀,过筛。 
  3. 用打蛋器打蛋清,分3个阶段加入白糖。将蛋白打到拿起打蛋器尾巴呈现挺立状态。 
  4. 将三分之一的蛋白霜加入杏仁粉混合,拌匀。 
  5. 所有杏仁粉混合物倒入剩下的三分之二蛋白霜。拌匀,直到蛋白面糊呈现类似缓缓流动的岩浆状态。 
  6. 面糊装入挤花袋,挤在烤盘上。挤的时候从中间固定缓缓挤出圆形。
  7. 用手掌敲打烤盘底部让面糊摊圆。
  8. 挤好的小圆面糊放置约15分钟,直到不黏手。 
  9. 烤箱预热200℃。关火,把烤盘放入6分钟。让烤箱的门半开着。 
  10. 将门关上,加热至140℃,烘烤到群边出现(约6分钟)。 
  11. 将温度减到120℃并烘烤多10分钟。 
  12. 马卡龙放凉后,用挤花袋挤入Nutella酱,用另外一片马卡龙轻轻扭动关上。