Archive for the ‘Brazilian’ Category

1st November this year fell on a Tuesday. I could have made a bridge for a longer “weekend”, but could not due to my workload at work 😦

I was glad to break off work for that one day that week for a yearly family reunion, hosted by one of my SIL’s. While driving to my SIL’s, we stopped at a friend’s house. I received a text message from F that she was giving away some of her ‘harvests’ in her garden. 

Guess what? I hand-picked the chillies in her garden. They were so, very, very fresh! She wanted only the red ones, so I helped myself to the green chillies. I didn’t mind the ‘raw version’ at all, because I knew if I left the chillies wrapped in absorbent paper in the lower drawer of the fridge, the chillies would ripen. 

And I was right!

10 days later, some of the birds’ eye chillies had turned to a lovely bright orange-crimson colour. And I knew exactly where some of the chillies would end up into 😉

Thai Chef vs Me

There was one Wednesday that I took a day off and brought my 2 sons out for lunch (Note, both boys had half-day school / Univ on a Wednesday). We went to a Thai resto near our place. 

For starter, I ordered Tom Yum Goong (TYG) for us. It was a good TYG, but I missed that Oomph in their soup. It was a wee bit too lame. 

Saturday came, and TYG was in the pipeline for our lunch menu.

So here it was, my version vs the Thai Chef’s. 


And not only that, I made my TYG in my thermomix! 


To be honest, I could eat my TYG all day without anything else that day, because it had been a while since I last made the soup! I looked back at a post I wrote; it was in March this year when I had friends over. You can read it all … Here 🙂

Because I love bold-tasting soups, I thought of a way to totally infuse the aromatics in the soup first before proceeding further. Be warned! It’s a highly seasoned soup that hits the palate and warms the heart without burning, if you know what I meant 😉

(Note: This is my own recipe using my preferred method – tried and tested – after a few trials and errors).  

Please be aware that some measurements are not given as only you will know how much or how little you want to put in the dish. Remember, “Ut quod ali cibus est aliis fuat acre venenum” or what is food for one man may be bitter poison to others. 

Ingredients A

  • 2 cm piece galangal
  • 1 shallot
  • 1 lemongrass
  • 2 coriander roots

Ingredient B

  • 5 g cooking oil / coconut oil

Ingredient C

  • 1,500 g water

Ingredients D

  • Lemongrass, bruised and halved
  • Shallots, halved 
  • Galangal, sliced
  • Bird’s eye chillies, lightly bruised
  • Kaffir lime leaves, lightly bruised with the fingers

Ingredients E

  • Fish sauce, to taste
  • Homemade chilli paste, eyeball for colour, taste and flavour
  • Salt, to taste 

Ingredients F

  • Prawns, shelled 
  • Mushrooms, sliced 

Ingredient G

  • Lime juice, to taste
  • Cherry tomatoes, halved or whole

Ingredient H

  • Fresh coriander 

Steps –

  • Place A in the TM bowl. Grind 5 sec/ sp 10  * 2

  • Add B. Sauté for 3 mins/100C/ sp 2 
  • Place D in SB and add C. Cook for 15 mins/ 120C/ sp1


  • Remove the SB and tip the aromatics in a bowl. Set aside for garnish later.

  • Transfer F in the SB. Cook for 4 mins/120C/ sp 1 or until the prawns are cooked. 

  • Remove the SB and set aside the cooked prawns, mushrooms, etc
  • Add E. Cook further for 5 mins/ 120C/ sp 2


  • Add G. Stir for 1 min/ R/ spoon
  • Assemble a serving bowl with prawns, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, some slices of galangal, bird’s eye chillies, lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves. Garnish with H.
  • Done!


Happy 1st Anniversary!

I made the TYG to go with my Nasi Ulam and baked spiced chicken. Our Saturday lunch was the bomb, by the way, with full-blown explosion of flavours. Yup, my kind of food 🙂


There’s no better way to celebrate my first year anniversary of owning the thermomix than sharing with you some of the dishes I have conjured the past 12 months using my most used kitchen gadget today!

And as they say, ‘A picture is worth a thousand words‘ …


IMPORTANT NOTICE : Please be aware that I’m neither a Consultant/ Advisor nor an employee of Thermomix.  I am NOT paid anything from any parties. I just happened to own a thermomix and love doing what I’m doing and will continue doing so. 

Happy Mid-Week ya’ll!

Cheers!

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If you happened to be reading this post and were wondering, “Where’s the bread? That does not look like bread”, then you are on the right post 😉

1. Pao de Queijo_closed up_basket

Pão de Queijo is cheese bread in Portuguese!

At first I thought pão is bun, as is used in Hokkien (pao = bun), however, ‘boa’ is bun in Portuguese.

When I first discovered that pão de queijo is cheese-flavoured bread, the word queijo kept replaying in my head like an old, broken gramophone.

Okey doke, the penny dropped! I realised where I have heard the word queijo from. It’s a word that I came across when I was in school in Malaysia. In the Malay language, ‘keju’ is cheese.

Oh by the way, the Malay language has many loanwords, one of which is Portuguese, and one of which is queijo = keju = cheese.

A Truly Brazilian July

Honestly speaking, July 2014 had been a very sportive month, with many back-to-back international competitions, such as the Le Tour de France, Gand Slam (tennis) in Wimbledon on grass, XX Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, and last but not least – and probably – the most prominent of all Tournaments was the 20th FIFA World Cup hosted by Brazil.

Although the host country did not win the World Cup this year, Brazil has won the hearts of millions of people with her much acclaimed cheesy bread.

Pão de Queijo had been flying around the net like nobody’s business this summer.

Ooh! Wow! Yum!

Yup, I exclaimed those words in that sequence – really, and, not wanting to be left gawking at the photos for nothing, I joined in the crowd.

The following proverb tells a lot about me. “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.”Unknown

2. Pao de Queijo_closed up_basket3
Mine! Mine! Mine! (remember the seagulls in Finding Nemo?) LOL!

Addictively Cheesy!

Yes, Addictively Cheesy!

Pop one in your mouth and you will be popping in chain reaction. Ha ha ha..

Pão de Queijo is crunchy dough snack with a mild cheese flavour. These little gems are eaten throughout Brazil, at breakfast or as a snack. I think the secret behind this addictive delicacy is the crispy outer layer while the inside is almost hollow and chewy and moist.

3. Pao de Queijo_cheezy

Yum!

The essential ingredients used in making Pão de Queijo are very similar to making Popovers – eggs, milk, flour, oil or melted butter and salt. The only glaring differences are the use of cassava flour (or tapioca starch) and cheese(s), hence, living up to its name.

I noticed there are 2 ways of preparing these cheesy bread (1) the all-in –one method with the cold milk-oil-flour-salt-egg-cheese mixture pouring in the cavity of each muffin tin or pan or (2) the boiled milk-oil-salt mixture amalgamating in the flour followed by beaten eggs and cheese.

I have tried the first method first. Personally, I prefer the second method because it’s the authentic and traditional way of preparing Pão de Queijo.

Here’s one I made earlier using the first method, very similar to making popovers or Yorkshire puddings. Oops…not the best photography 😦

4. Pao de Queijo_cold process_r

In this post, however, I have based my recipe on a cool looking Cookbook, in the Dutch version, “BRASIL! Het Kookboek” (BRAZIL! The Cookbook) by David Ponte, Lizzy Barber and Jamie Barber. Note I have made some variations with my comments in blue italic.

5. Pao de Queijo_Cookbook_r

Ingredients –

  • 1.25 dl full cream milk
  • 50 ml Sunflower oil (I used Corn oil)
  • 1 tsp sea salt (or to taste)
  • 250 gm cassava flour (or tapioca starch/ flour)
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten (I used 2 small eggs)
  • 200 gm Parmesan or cheddar, grated (I used 100g grated Parmigiano Reggiano plus 150g Mozarella)

Method –

  • Pour 1.25 dl milk, Sunflower oil and salt in a large saucepan and bring the mixture to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat once the mixture starts to rise and bubble. Add the flour and quickly stir the mixture vigorously until there is no trace of dry tapioca flour. Stir to form moist dough. Transfer the dough to the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Let the dough cool slightly.
  • Add the eggs to the cooled dough and mix them through at low speed. Increase the speed after 1-2 minutes and blend the mixture on high speed until all the egg is incorporated and the dough is smooth. Add the grated Parmesan (Parmigiano reggiano and Mozarella) and continue mixing until the cheese is incorporated in the dough mixture. 6. Pao de Queijo_kneaded dough
  • Line a baking sheet or parchment paper. Moisten the palms of your hands with water or oil. Take a tablespoon of dough and roll into balls. Wash your hands in between before shaping the balls, because the dough is very sticky. (You can also use a small ice cream scoop. Dip the scoop into ice water and shake off excess water before shaping the balls). Place the balls 2.5 cm apart on the baking sheet.
  • Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. They should be crispy on the outside and a little gooey inside. Serve immediately.

7. Pao de Queijo_in the oven_r

Depending on your oven and the size of the cheese balls, the result can go either way – too golden or too pale. Below the outcome of the baking times at 25 mins (top half) and 22 mins (below half).

8. Pao de Queijo_25 vs 22

I must admit that the ones baked for 25 minutes were crunchier with small pockets of air within the dough. They were less gooey than the ones baked for 22 minutes. The verdict? I loved both, because they’re Mine! Mine! Mine!   Ha ha ha…

9. Pao de Queijo_25 mins10. Pao de Queijo_22mins

11. Pao de Queijo_closed up_basket212. Pao de Queijo_jar2

I am sharing this recipe to the following blog-hop events –

Cook-Your-Books#16 hosted by Joyce from Kitchen Flavours

Cook Your Books

Bake Along with the theme “Popovers”, hosted by Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids, Lena from Her Frozen Wings and Joyce from Kitchen Flavours

Bake Along

Weekend Cooking hosted by Beth Fish Reads

Weekend Cooking

 

 

Cheers!