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March 26, 2012

No Cook Tomato Sauce

When it comes to pasta dishes, I consider tomato sauce as its ideal partner. It is amazing how the rich flavor of  tomatoes could turn the bland pasta into something exceptional. We eat a  fair amount of pasta dishes at home so learning how to make a flavorful tomato sauce is ongoing.  Two years ago I attended a potluck at a friend's house. My friend prepared a no-cook spaghetti sauce. Yes, spaghetti was the first dish I ate and I fell in love with it in an instant. Since then I have reconstructed the recipe  numerous times at home. I vary the flavors by adding different ingredients and the result surprises me each time I make it.

March 20, 2012

Jullian Celebrates his 1st Birthday

I was at the Immigration Office for my visa renewal when I received a call from one of the members of the church I go to. Her son was turning 1 and she asked if I could make him a Mickey Mouse cake. It was Thursday, my last day at work. ( Friday and Saturday are my days off) I spent all morning waiting for my new visa and it was only half past one when it was released. I was thinking of going straight home from the Immigration Office. It was almost time for me to go home anyway. When the woman told me she had been searching for someone who could make the cake for a week, I hesitated. It's her son's first birthday. The last thing I would do was turn her down.

 The party was Saturday. I was off on Friday.  Well, I could bake the cake on Friday but I'd rather work overtime on my last day and enjoy my day off. I told her I'd do it.

March 16, 2012

Moussaka - Greek Eggplant Casserole

One thing I love about eggplant is that you can turn this humble fruit into something delicious. When I was little my mom had a menu she would follow for the week. A lot of dishes she would cook had eggplant in it. They may not be gourmet dishes but how she managed to give them a new twist to taste just as good, it still amazes me up til now. (Mommy is one of the best cooks I know. Believe me. I'm not the only one who said it) Now that my sister and I are grown the legacy of our mom continues.

March 14, 2012

Blueberry Muffins for Breakfast

My job requires me to be out of bed before rooster crows. Half past 3 in the morning to be precised.My body clock has well adjusted to my daily routine. Even on my day off when I should have sneaky lie-ins, I still wake up fast and do a lot of chores to maximize the use of daylight.

I was up early on Saturday morning. The big sis usually gets up before me on Saturday as she prints her worksheets for Sabbath School. When I went to the kitchen she told me there's nothing to cook for breakfast.All that was left in the fridge were 2 eggs, soy milk and the spare blueberry filling from the blueberry cheesecake I made a week early.. This past week had been toxic at work. Big S took her class on a field trip. We were too exhausted by Friday that we didn't bother going out for groceries.  I told her not to worry as I could bake some thing for breakfast. I checked the cabinet for flour and baking powder. I was relieved to find a pack of  flour and just the right amount of  baking powder needed to make muffins.. 

 I asked my cousin who was here for the weekend to help. She prepared the wet ingredients. Sister took photos while I mixed. Thanks guys.

March 12, 2012

Fish Tofu Pizza

Through the years I was living in China,  I had almost gotten close to perfecting pizza dough. I am not bragging but having a workload of 16 hours a week gave me a lot of time to hone my skills.

Once I challenged myself by holding a pizza party for my birthday. Yes, that was how bold I was but I vowed not to do it again. I was supposed to just relax and enjoy my birthday. Instead I spent long hours kneading dough, making pizza sauce and slicing toppings. Imagine feeding a male-dominated group with huge appetite. It was an immense task for a petite girl like me. I was totally drained. The instant I heard good comments and saw the look on my friends faces, my tiredness disappeared.

March 9, 2012

Luscious Blueberry Cheesecake

If there is something I will not refuse myself to indulge in, it would be cheesecake. I just love the richness of the filling and  the crunchiness of the crust. And there's  the topping which help balances the rich cheese taste.When combined the tastes counteracts each other in a delightful way.

Last year I made  three chocolate cheesecake for my sister's birthday. This year, our friend Maggie requested a blueberry cheesecake. I bought the ingredients couple of weeks early. Because of our hectic schedule, we couldn't find time to get together.Then last week we decided to have barbecue at my place. I had finally got the  chance to make blueberry cheesecake.We chose Sunday as it was the time favorable to all. Everyone agreed.

March 6, 2012

Little Cake Decorators

Since Christmas time the kids in church had been bugging us about decorating/designing cupcakes. The plan had been postponed many times because we just couldn't find a suitable occasion after the holiday season. When the head of the Children's Department in my church learned about my sister's birthday she quickly planned a potluck for the kids. My sister requested everyone to come because this time the plan would push through. The children got all excited.

She ordered cupcakes and vanilla butter cream from me.