Sticky Date Pudding

Hello guys! It’s been a year since my last post, and I’m so sorry that this blog has been more than dead. I still managed to keep my Instagram floating, so to all you fervent supporters, thank you for being patient with me.

The past year has been really busy, studying for MBBS and finally getting my medical degree after 5 long years of studying woohoo! Thank God for bringing me through the 5 years and for blessing me with loads of wonderful friends to journey with.

With the end of one journey comes the start of another! I am now part of the working force, earning my own keep and having more free time to spend in the kitchen. I’ve been trying out loads of recipes and new things, like sourdough bread and pickling. I’m quite excited to share these things on the blog with you! Because they are so simple to do yet so yummy!

One of the simple recipes I will share today is of one of my favourite desserts – sticky date pudding! My gold standard for sticky date pudding comes from Marmalade Pantry. The contrast between the warm, moist pudding and the cold, creamy ice cream, brings the perfect end to any meal. I’ll always order it Marmalade Pantry no matter how full I am.

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Being on the list of my favourite desserts, I had to master this. I’ve tried a couple of recipes but they always culminated in dry puddings, nothing near the one I had in Marmalade. So, when I tried this pudding, I knew I had to share it with you!

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This pudding is moist, comforting and super simple to make! My parents had two each for tea, D kept going ‘this is really good’, the only gripe was that it was still a bit too sweet from the butterscotch sauce. That’s something I still need to tweak, but here it goes first, tweaked from the recipe kindly shared by Chef Daniel Sia, of Odette fame:

Sticky Date Pudding
makes 15 individual portions

Ingredients for Pudding

250g pitted dates
225g water
110g salted butter
100g castor sugar
2 eggs
4g baking soda
7g baking powder
250g plain flour
200g whipping cream

Directions

  1. Heat dates and water in a saucepan until it forms a thick paste. Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 165 degrees, with fan. Butter the ramekins/ muffin tray that you will be using.
  3. Using a mixer, cream butter and sugar together until pale and white.
  4. Turn to Low mixing speed, and beat eggs into mixture, one egg at the time.
  5. Add in flour and whipping cream in alternate batches, until well mixed
  6. Add in the date paste.
  7. Spoon batter into ramekins until 2/3 full.
  8. Bake in the oven for 20 min or until batter is cooked.
  9. Once out of the oven, immediately poke holes in the cake and pour the butterscotch sauce over.

Ingredients for Butterscotch Sauce
200g brown sugar
375ml heavy cream
70g butter
1/2 tsp vanilla essence

Directions
Heat all the ingredients in a pan until the butter is melted.

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Rock Melon Sago Dessert

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Whoa,
I have not posted for 3 whole months?!

But I did not abandon my kitchen in the last 3 months. I just never found the time to take the photos and blog about the recipes or I ended up randomly cooking things that do not have recipes teehee.

Anyway, today is the first day of the Chinese New Year! which is a big thing for the chinese people;
for the old, it’s a time to gather and visit the people whom they have not seen for a year;
for the young, it’s a time to show off their new clothes and get money in the form of red packets.

Cny always bewildered me because
1. Why do people only visit other people once a year? If those people really did matter, wouldn’t you visit them more often?
2. Young people, like me, get very bored visiting other people because as I mentioned earlier, these people are people you visit only once a year which means I don’t really know them.
3. It’s the time of the year to show off who wears red clothes better and who bought the trendiest new clothes. Problem is I always struggle to buy new nice clothing for Cny and I always end up wearing ‘old’ clothes and get judged by my cousin.

Okay, I seem to dislike Chinese traditions quite a bit but there are always upsides to this Cny period.
1. Long holidays, especially when there’s no one to visit.
2. Cny goodies (which requires another post; my mother makes the best pineapple tarts)
3. Cny meals (steamboats, elaborate reunion dinners, yummmmms)

So this Cny lunch, I made a rock melon sago dessert for everybody.

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Thing was that it was a bit too sweet, but i guess sweet is good during Cny because the Chinese has a phrase “甜甜蜜蜜” which literally means sweet honey but figuratively means that your relationships will be sweet and sticky in a good way.

My favourite part about this recipe is that I get to scoop melon balls! Reminds me of my primary school days where I would bring a watermelon bowl for any class party. Loved those watermelon bowls! I should do them one day again, except that watermelon is so expensive in Singapore right now ): I miss my $2 watermelons.

Anyway, here’s the recipe, adapted from a local website
but with sugar cut down by a whole lot.

Rock Melon Sago Dessert 
Serves 6-8

Ingredients
1 small rock melon
1/4 cup sago
2 cups water for cooking the sago
1/4 cup white sugar
1 cup water
200ml coconut milk with ½ teaspoon salt

Directions
1. Cook 1/4 white sugar and water together until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is clear. Set aside.
2. Boil the 2 cups of water until it is on a rolling boil, then add the sago in. Turn down to medium heat and whisk constantly for 10 minutes.
3. After 10 minutes, turn off the fire and cover the pot with a lid. Allow the sago to cook in the residual heat until you see very few white dots left (about 10 minutes).
4. While waiting, use a melon baller to scoop out balls of rock melon.
5. Scrap out the remaining rock melon bits and put them into a blender.
6. Blend the rock melon scraps with the sugar syrup and place in your serving bowl.
7. Add in the coconut milk.
8. Once the sago is done, rinse it under tap water to remove the excess starch. Then stir it into the serving bowl.
9. Add the rock melon bowls into the serving bowls too.
10. Chill for at least 3 hours before serving!

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Earl Grey Tea Cake

541A2548 My House (another name for class in Med school) held a Christmas/ New Year party today and I decided to make an Earl Grey Tea Cake for dessert 🙂 I first tried this tea cake at a cafe in Lavender but it was quite expensive, about $4 for a slice. I did like the flavours though, so I tried to replicate it at home.

When the cake first came out of the oven, I fell in love with the texture. But when I kept it in the fridge overnight, the cake became a bit dry which wasn’t to anyone’s liking. So I’ll most probably be tweaking this recipe by adding in yogurt for a moist cake!

Another gripe I had was that the Earl Grey Tea flavour was not strong enough. The taste was good enough but stronger would be better. So perhaps use more tea bags next time for the milk infusion?

I’ll post the updated version after my exams when I have time to play around in my kitchen but till then 🙁 Goodbye!

Ps. The photos are prettier this time round because I took them on D’s pretty new hipster wooden table 🙂

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Ingredients
240ml whole milk
4 bags Earl Grey tea
360 grams all-purpose flour
2½ teaspoons baking powder
225 grams salted butter, at room temperature
180 grams granulated sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature

Directions
1. Simmer milk in saucepan over medium low heat
2. Add the Earl Grey tea bags into the milk, cover the lid of the saucepan and steep for 20 minutes.
3. After 20 mins, squeeze tea bags of any milk and ensure that the infused milk still adds up to 240ml. If it doesn’t, add more milk.
4. Cut open the earl grey tea bag to use the leaves inside. Whisk the leaves, flour and baking powder together.
5. In a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar together for 5-6 minutes until light and fluffy.
6. On low speed, add in eggs one by one until well-mixed.
7. Add in flour and milk tea in alternate batches until the flour is well-mixed, starting and ending with the flour mixture.
8. Preheat the oven to 175 degrees Celsius.
9. Pour the batter into your loaf pans.
10. Bake for 30-40 mins until the skewer comes out clean. Enjoy! 🙂

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