Sunday, April 5, 2009

Qingming Festival (清明节)

Yesterday was the actual day of Qing Ming (清明节), the time where we pay our respect to our loved ones who have gone to a better place before us. It is also called tomb-sweeping (掃墓), but these days because of land scarcity, these tomb or graves are mostly shifted to columbarium.

On all occasions, I love to prepare food that my mum liked to eat. Since I didnt take leave this time round, I can only prepare things that are simple and do not require alot of cooking time. Not elaborate, but good ol' stuff, i hope. Old-style 鸡蛋糕 and fried bee hoon with canned pig trotters, plus grilled drumstick. We used to have the fried bee hoon ever so often as supper whenever we played mahjong on Saturday nights, thus this dish always bring back many good (and tasty) memories. Although fried bee hoon seems easy enough, i'm not really good at cooking it. The bee hoon turned out 'brittle', which i think is due to too much frying or too much water, must remember these 2 points the next time i cook this dish again.

Old-style 鸡蛋糕

Ingredients/ Method
3 large eggs
300gm plain flour
300gm sugar (will reduce to 200gm the next time)
170ml F&N orange juice

1. Sift plain flour and set aside.
2. Beat eggs and sugar until mixture turns pale and thick, about 20-25 mins using the mixer.
3. Fold in flour into egg mixture gently, until well mixed.
4. Pour in orange juice into the mixture and stir in one direction gently, and until well mixed.
5. Pour mixture into prepared cane basket with plastic suitable for steaming. Steam on high heat for 1 hour.

*To have your cake smile at you, sprinkle sugar across the mixture before putting into the steamer.

* This 鸡蛋糕 tasted better than my earlier one. The aerated orange juice acts as an rising agent, as people in the old days hardly use commercial stuff like baking powder or soda.

Since we were going out early in the morning, I baked a loaf of Crunchy Peanut Butter bread and packed this as cheese sandwiches, just in case my little one gets hungry before the prayers end. This bread turned out really soft and fragant, and by far the best loaf the breadmaker has churned out. I would definitely baked this again!

Crunchy Peanut Butter Bread
(Recipe adapted from Happy Homebaker)
Ingredients/ Method
300ml water
3 tbsp crunchy peanut butter
1 tbsp oil
450g bread flour
1 1/2tsp salt
2 tsp caster sugar
2 tbsp milk powder
1 1/4tsp instant yeast

1. Pour water into BM. Add in peanut butter, oil and half the flour.
2. Sprinkle salt, sugar and milk powder. Cover with remaining flour. Lastly make an indent on the flour and add in the yeast.
3. Set the BM at Basic mode, Light crust and 900g size.
4. I turn off the BM 10mins before the pre-set time.


Superman said...

Whether is it nice or not nice, it served the purpose. You mum will be happy about it.

Passionate About Baking said...

Hi quizzine,
So many foods in one post!! The tradition sponge cake sure looks better than the previous one. Heehee... I was also told that adding carbonated drinks will help to make the sponge cake softer. I've yet to buy one can, wait till I buy it, I'm gonna try to steam again! Thanks again for sharing!

quizzine said...

Hi Superman,
Tks, I'm sure she's happy, just like how she will when she's around ;-)

Hi Jane,
That's not alot as compared to yours! Actually i did another kueh for my aunt on Sunday, but because I want to better the recipe, i have not posted it yet. We are all sharing and exchanging ideas here, right?

chumpman said...

Hi, quizzine

I want to make vanilla flavor 鸡蛋糕. Do I have to use orange juice or shall I replace it with e.g. milk ?

quizzine said...

Hi Chumpman,
I don't think you can use milk cos the orange juice is used as a rising agent. However, you can try using other carbonated/aerated drink like sprite. If you use orange juic, you will get a hint of orange flavour in the ji dan gao. Happy trying!

chumpman said...

Thanks, quizzine for your prompt reply. This recipe caught my eyes coz I got all ingredients in pantry except orange juice so I asked if I can subsitute with milk. No wonder no self raising power is needed since orange juice is used as a rising agent. Orange flavour ji dan gao sounds yummy too. Will definately try it and tell you how later. Thanks again

quizzine said...

Hi chumpman,
look forward to seeing your cake soon ;-)

chumpman said...

Hi, quizzine

I'm going to make this ji dian gao tomorrow for Mother's Day. May I ask if I use Sprite, can I add e.g. pandan or vanilla flavoring ? Thanks

quizzine said...

Hi chumpman,
I've not tried adding vanilla or pandan essence cos i like the original eggy taste. i guess u can try. Let me know the outcome ok?