Category Archives: Dessert

BlackBall Taiwanese Dessert – San Gabriel

Given the blistering temperatures of late, I decided to give BlackBall Taiwanese Dessert a try, despite the tepid reviews on Yelp. BlackBall is a Taiwanese dessert chain that markets itself as an ‘healthy’ dessert alternative, with an emphasis on grass jelly desserts and the Taiwanese penchant for QQ, i.e., chewy.

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Blueberry Scones with Coconut Flour

I was recently asked to recreate a recipe using coconut flour. I hadn’t ever heard of coconut flour until I was introduced to it by Nuts.com, but I was instantly intrigued because I already knew all the great benefits of coconuts. Coconut flour is gluten and wheat-free, high in fiber, protein, and healthy fats, and it doesn’t spike your blood sugar like grain-based flours do. I have also been delving into the world of coconut – coconut oil spray, coconut butter, coconut coffee, and have been pleasantly surprised but how good this stuff is, so this request just made sense to me. After doing some research, I decided to purchase Anthony’s Coconut Flour from Amazon (here). While waiting for it to arrive, I then had to think about what recipe I could use it for.  My research showed that coconut flour absorbs more liquid than regular flour, and that I wouldn’t be able to substitute it 1:1. I decided to use it on my all-time favorite blueberry scone recipe (here), and after a trial and error round, I was able to create some delicious blueberry scones that were guilt-free! So, I present to you…

Blueberry Scones with Coconut Flour

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Chocolate Nutella Mug Cake

Chocolate Nutella Mug Cake

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French Macarons

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Hello all!

Merry Christmas! I know it’s been a little while since I’ve last posted, but school has been busy busy, as usual. However I hope I can make up for it with this short break that I’m on.

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Peanut Butter and Nutella Filled Crescent Rolls

Ingredients:
-Pillsbury crescent roll dough (each container makes 8 croissants)
-Nutella
-Peanut butter

Line tin tray with foil and roll up croissants with your choice of filling. I made some plain, some with peanut butter only, some with nutella only, and some with both peanut butter and nutella.  Bake at 375 degrees (my oven is convection) for 10 minutes.  So easy and yummy!  I used one can of the reduced fat croissant rolls, and they were still amazing because of the filling.  Yum!

 

 

~Nicole

‘lette macarons – Pasadena/Beverly Hills

Hello loves,

Just a quick post today. I was in Old Town Pasadena, because my class got out early and also because my dad asked me to pick up a charger from the Apple Store today. I decided that it’s been a long time since I first had ‘Lette and I wanted to try it again.

I wrote about my first experience with ‘lette (here). This time around, I bought the salted caramel and the raspberry. The salted caramel was just as good as I last remembered it to be. The raspberry filling is to die for. It’s not too sweet or too tart. It’s a nice balance to the sweetness of the cookie itself. I really love the texture of macarons, and I’m sad that I didn’t try them before.

Unfortunately these things are still $1.70 a piece, so they are my occasional guilty pleasure when I have some change lying around.

If you have not yet tried a macaron, I suggest trying it!

Let us know what you think.

Cheers,

❤ Josie

14 S Fair Oaks Ave
Pasadena, CA 91105

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Here are some pics from the one in Beverly Hills to tempt your tastebuds…

9466 Charleville Boulevard at Beverly Drive
Beverly Hills, CA 90212

http://www.lettemacarons.com/macarons.html

~Nicole

Fluff Ice – Monterey Park

Remember my “Lucky Noodle King” review from not too long ago? Well on that very same day, I had a chance to visit Fluff Ice for dessert.Fluff Ice is located in the Atlantic Square plaza in Monterey Park. I always walk past this place when I go to the 24 Hour Fitness next door. For a long while, I had been meaning to go to Fluff Ice and try their stuff out. I had written a review about “Salju Dessert” a while back, which Fluff Ice had taken note of through their tumblr page. The owner had mentioned that we should come and try Fluff Ice. I had messaged them and said that I would love to come out and try their Fluff Ice and asked what they recommended. Matthew, one of the owners, replied suggesting that I try the Thai Tea Fluff Ice.

I stopped by a few times to Fluff Ice during the day, only to find that I was much too early. Fluff Ice opens up at 1pm in the afternoon.  So I was pretty bummed during my first few attempts to try their fluff ice. However, I was happy when Calvin agreed to accompany me after we had lunch.

We came around 1:30-2:00 pm and was surprised to find the store busy with kids and adults alike.  The store was brightly colored and had a nice whimsical atmosphere about it. I really love brightly colored walls with white accents. I’m a sucker for places that are just aesthetically pleasing to the eye.

Anyway, I tasted a sample of the Thai Tea Ice, just to see what it tasted like. It was sweet and had a nice Thai Tea Flavor, however I feared that it might be too sweet with the condense milk and in large quantities, so Calvin and I decided to settle on Taro Fluff Ice with mangoes and egg pudding.

So what is Fluff Ice exactly? Well, on the wall of their store, there is a poster that states:

What is Fluff Ice?

It’s not ice cream.
It’s not yogurt.
It’s not your typical shaved ice.
It’s a new type of shaved ice that has not been seen anywhere else.
It’s creamy and has a texture that is so unique that it can only be described as “Fluff Ice”

I must admit, they were true to their word when they said it wasn’t ice cream or yogurt. The consistency of Fluff Ice reminds me a little bit of Class 302’s shaved snow at first glance. However when you taste it, it does have a creamy consistency, reminding you of ice cream. The reason why I wouldn’t say it’s ice cream is being of how light and airy the consistency is when it first touches your tongue, and then it slowly eases into a creamy texture. It is definitely not like shaved ice, because you don’t find the icy, chopped ice particles you would find in shaved ice.

I must say that I was slightly disappointed by our selection of the taro ice, simply because the taro flavor was so subtle, it was hardly noticeable even when consumed in its natural state. Add in the mangoes and the egg pudding, then you just get a cold, cream textured ice that has been overpowered by its toppings. I was expecting a kick of flavor, similar to the flavor I got from the small sample of Thai Tea Fluff Ice. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case with the taro. It’s a shame too, because I really love taro flavored ice creams and desserts.

But don’t knock it until you try it. Fluff Ice offers a good variety of flavors, so choose wisely. I would definitely come back again to try Fluff Ice a second time, but perhaps I won’t try the taro one again.

Try it out, and let me know what you guys think.

Cheers,

❤ Josie

500 N Atlantic Blvd
Monterey Park, CA 91754

Japanese-style cheesecake

Japanese-style cheesecake is very different from the cheesecake Americans love and know so well. It’s more bread-like, drier, and lighter-tasting, almost resembling a fluffy pound cake. I found a recipe on The Little Teochew, one of my favorite Singaporean recipe blogs and set out on trying it myself.

Ingredients

Ingredients for Japanese cheesecake

  • 140 g fine granulated sugar
  • 6 egg whites
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
  • 50 g butter
  • 250 g cream cheese
  • 100 ml fresh milk
  • 60 g cake flour
  • 20 g corn starch
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Lemon zest (some recipes call for this, just depends on personal preference)

Recipe

The recipe I followed is available on: http://www.thelittleteochew.com/2011/03/japanese-cheesecake-tips-tricks.html. I made no adjustments to the original recipe, aside from not using a waterbath.

Japanese cheesecake served with coffee

Troubleshooting

I actually ran into a few problems while baking this cake. I beat the egg whites for too long, which caused my cake to deflate as it baked, creating an ugly mess 30 minutes after cooling in the oven–the crust had collapsed into the center of the cake and looked like a crater (even though I let the cake cool inside the oven for a good 45 minutes, to prevent the cold air from deflating my cake). So yes, carefully read the Tips on the recipe page and beat them at High speed for a few minutes before settling on Low speed to create a finer texture. Makes a huge difference!

Another issue I had was creating an evenly melted solution of cream cheese batter. Once everything had melted in the double boiler, I still had lumps of cream cheese immersed in a pool of melted butter, cream cheese and milk. To rectify this , I resorted to blending the entire mixture with a Magic Bullet to create an even texture. It worked perfectly for me.

P.S. Once I try a water bath to make this cake, I’ll post updates to this recipe.

Glutinous rice ball dessert (如意果)

Ruyi guo (如意果), also called Tong Bat Lat (糖不甩) in Cantonese, are glutinous rice balls served in a sweet syrup. They’re not difficult to make, once you get the hang of kneading rice flour dough.

This year, my mom drew up elaborate plans for an entire Chinese New Year’s eve feast, a 10-course meal (excluding desserts) for just the 4 of us. I vowed that I would contribute something to the dinner at my house this year, and narrowed down my options to two: glutinous rice balls of some sort or fa gao (發糕), which looks like a split open cupcake. The former seemed easier, and I found a really good recipe via Google.

Glutinous rice balls, made with glutinous rice flour (found at any Asian supermarket), are some of the most versatile desserts out there! This is a quintessential Burmese New Year dessert as well, except that the Burmese style ones are served with palm sugar syrup and shredded coconut. Hopefully in April, I’ll have time to share my mom’s recipe on Oh My Food Coma! too.

Ingredients

Rice ball ingredients:

  • Glutinous rice flour
  • Lukewarm water
  • Cold water
Garnishing:
  • Unsalted peanuts ~ according to personal preference
  • Sesame seeds (black and/or white)
Ginger syrup:
  • Brown candy (片糖, lit. piece sugar)
  • Ginger (3 to 4 slices)
  • Water

Recipe

I’m adapting the recipe from Christine’s Recipes, albeit separated into sections for clarity.

  1. Start with the garnishings first. Use a brush to lightly oil a small pan.
  2. Fry the unsalted peanuts whole, turning them over regularly until they brown a bit.
  3. Set the peanuts aside to cool. Put sesame seeds in the remaining oil to roast, until they emit an aroma. I also used black sesame seeds for better contrast and make the dessert more appetizing.
  4. Remove the sesame seeds from the pan.
  5. Use a mortar and pestle to coarsely grind the peanuts. Another option is to use a rolling pin on a Ziplock bag containing the peanuts.
  1. Then start with the ginger sugar syrup. Chop a few pieces of ginger (3 to 4 should suffice). Chop 1 piece of rock candy into smaller pieces.
  2. Use the pan from earlier and start boiling ~1 cup of water.
  3. Add the chopped items into the pan once the water starts boiling.
  4. After the syrup boils, leave on low heat to simmer.
  1. Next are  the rice balls. Put the glutinous rice flour (start off with 100 g) into a large bowl.
  2. Slowly add warm water to the mix and knead.
  3. Alternate with warm water and cold water for better consistency.
  4. Continue kneading until no sticky residues remain in the bowl.
  5. Roll the dough on a flat surface and separate into small equal pieces (pinch off 1/2-in or so, according to taste).
  6. Roll each piece into small balls with hands and set aside.
  7. Get a small pot of water boiling. Cook the balls and stir so the balls don’t attach to the pot’s bottom.
  8. Once the balls have emerged, remove them and let them cook in the ginger syrup for 10 minutes.
  9. Then the produit final is ready. Serve with peanuts and sesame seeds, according to personal preference.

Troubleshooting

The main issue I came across was kneading the flour. I added too much water at the outset, resulting in a sticky and gooey texture, so I solidified the dough by slowly adding some flour, adding some water and kneading thoroughly to prevent flour clumps from forming. The amount of water used will vary from person to person. Just keep kneading until the dough is manageable.

My family prefers smaller, dainty rice balls (akin to Burmese mont lone yay paw / မုန့်လုံးရေပေါ်), so I ended up making the balls smaller than Chinese-style ones.

Powdered Donuts

Powdered Donut Holes

Ingredients:

  • 100 grams of flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon of melted butter
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 2 tablespoon of sugar
  • 6-8 tablespoon of milk
  • Powdered sugar and cinnamon

Directions: Combine the egg, sugar, milk, and melted butter with a whisk. (Careful: do not add hot butter to the eggs, let it set to room temperature first..unless you want scrambled eggs).

Sift the flower and baking powder into a bowl. Create a crater and pour the egg mixture in the center. Mix the batter from the center outwards.

Add about 1-2 inches of oil to a pan. Heat the pan on medium, and let the oil come to temperature slowly. Take a little bit of batter and drop it in the oil. If the batter bubbles and floats to the top, the oil is at the right temperature. Warning: Do NOT heat oil on high!

Take a spoonful of batter and drop it into the oil. Let it cook for 4-5 minutes, then remove.

Let the donuts cool on either a rack or on a plate with a paper towel.

Once the donuts have cooled, take a ziplock sandwich bag and fill it with powdered sugar. Place a few donuts inside and shake the bag to fully coat the donuts. After the donuts are all coated, sprinkle cinnamon sugar over the top. The donuts are ready.

I hope you enjoy this easy recipe, which was inspired by cookingwithdog the youtube channel. I love her! If you haven’t checked her out yet, you definitely should.

Enjoy all!

❤ Josie

The tapioca milk tea making process

The tapioca milk tea making process, illustrated.


Tapioca pearls soaked in honey

Brewed black tea


Condensed milk boiled with the tea

It was for a Community Service Commission fundraiser.

Choclate Chip Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

I promised I’d show you guys what I was making earlier last night, while I was updating f00dcoma with the udon recipe. Nicole and I just used regular white cake box mix and just added some chocolate chips we had lying around. For our last batch, we actually added some chocolate powder (the kind you would use for chocolate milk) as an experiment. It actually came out really good!!!

The cream cheese frosting was not homemade. It was store bought. It was actually Michelle’s leftover frosting. (thanks michelle! and sorry, I’ll be sure to replace it)

Oh and yes! Meet Mr. Morimoto. Mmhmm..named after the great iron chef morimoto. He’s hungry for some cupcakes… OM NOM NOM!!

Hello Desserts – San Jose

Hello Desserts
San Jose, CA

Every so often when I crave for a yummy dessert I come here.  They specialize in European desserts as well as Asian ones so you can always find something you want.  This time around I ordered the affogato for the first time.  Gelato and coffee sounds yummy right?  I got it with hazelnut gelato and chocolate hazelnut espresso.  You pour the espresso into the cup and eat it like a root beer float.  It was amazing.  The gelato was rich and creamy and the texture was cooling and smooth in your mouth.  Pair it with the espresso and it was like a classy coffee party in my mouth haha.  No wonder it got thumbs up on the menu, I’ll definitely order this again.  Justin would love this!!!

Literally, a sweet ending to my birthday weekend 🙂

~Nicole

Kumako Ramen and Shuei Do Manju Shop – San Jose

Kumako Ramen & Shuei-Do Manju Shop
San Jose, CA

These two places are right next to each other so we just went.  I ordered plum wine (first alcoholic purchase yay!) and edemame because I was full from dim sum with my parents.  The plum wine is yummy and not too strong and the edemame had the perfect amount of salt.  I tried some of my friends’ ramen and it wasn’t the best broth but the veggies in it were good and plentiful.  I especially liked the bamboo shoots.
This shaved ice place is infamous in San Jose and it’s so popular that it’s only open on weekends.  We went right after ramen and had to wait behind a couple people but it was worth it.  Paula & I got the regular shaved ice for $2.75 and we chose Strawberry and Pink lemonade.  It was SO GOOD!  The ice melts in your mouth and it’s so soft so it doesn’t give you brainfreeze.  Summertime favorite!

~Nicole

Macao Egg Tarts

 

Macao egg tarts

I felt this intense craving for egg tarts last night, so I looked up recipes for egg tarts and settled on the easiest looking one, on Rasa Malaysia. That lady sure knows how to get people cooking. I think the appealing pictures do the job.

Ingredients:
Crust:
1 box Betty Crocker pie crust mix (11 oz)
3 tbsp melted butter
1/3 cup cold water

Custard filling:
4 egg yolks
1/4 cup of sugar
1/3 cup of heavy whipping cream
1/3 cup of milk
3 drops vanilla extract

The recipe wasn’t particularly difficult. Simply mix the above ingredients together. For the crust, I had to knead the dough a bit, which got pretty messy because I didn’t use enough flour. After, I split the dough into 12 pieces.

Then it was time to mix and whisk the custard filling. For the leftover egg whites, I decided to fry an omelet for the morning.

Then, I buttered the cupcake pan with cooking spray, flattened the dough inside and filled it with the custard filling. Preheated the oven to 400 F, and let them bake for 20-ish minutes, checking every so often to make sure they weren’t burning.

This is actually pretty simple and I think you can substitute the pie crust mix with flour and other ingredients but it probably wouldn’t taste as fluffy. Actually, when I made the egg tarts, the crust ended up a bit too thick, so the egg tarts have a cookie-like texture, because there wasn’t enough room for the filling.

Ah well, pretty decent for the first time. I had leftover custard filling so I just baked those to make egg custard. Fluffy, slightly sweet and very yummy.

Peace,

Justin