Monthly Archives: June 2015

Chinese Hot Dog Buns


20150601_224900I love how the hot dog buns in the Chinese bakery are so soft and fluffy. I decided to make it at home and tried out a few different shapes. If you are like me and want to make something different, then give this a try. Its perfect for a quick snack. Children would love it because of the different shapes especially the puppy shape. You could add some toppings like cheese, chopped green onions, sliced onions, sliced bell pepper to it just before baking. If you have any questions, please post it in the comment section and I shall make sure I reply. Do try and enjoy


Hot dogs – 8 (uncooked)

All purpose flour – 370 gms

Warm milk – 1 cup

Sugar – 3 tbsp

Quick Rise Yeast – 2 1/4 tsp

Baking Powder – 1 tsp

Sea Salt – 1 tsp

Melted Butter – 3 tbsp


  • Mix the warm mix and sugar in a small bowl and then add the yeast to it. Let it sit for 5 minutes.20150601_182406
  • It will become frothy if the temperature of the milk is right. Make sure that the milk is not hot as it will kill the yeast and the dough will not rise. 20150601_183508
  • In a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer, add the flour, baking powder and salt. Mix it well. 20150601_183428
  • Add the melted butter and beat it for couple of minutes. 20150601_183612
  • Add the yeast mixture and mix it to form a dough. Knead the dough for ten minutes till smooth and elastic. 20150601_185102
  • Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl. Let it rise for an hour till it has doubled in size. 20150601_205228
  • Divide the dough into 10 equal and smooth pieces. I weighed mine to make sure they are equal in size. 20150601_210213
  • Follow the pictorial instructions to make the different shapes with the dough.

1. Roll out the dough in a rectangle. Place the hot dog inside and cover it up with the dough. 20150601_21062220150601_210724

2. From the top, make cuts on it up to 3/4 the way as shown in the picture. Now place each slice on either side till all the way through. 20150601_21081020150601_21150320150601_21153120150601_211638

3. For the next one, roll the dough into a circle. Make two small slits on the sides and spread it out. These are the doggy ears. Now slice the mouth part in half using scissors. It was tricky to do that but possible. Now place half a hot dog in the mouth part and then seal it up. Then use black kidney bean or coffee bean for the eyes and nose. 20150601_21180820150601_21184320150601_21240520150601_212622

4. Roll up the dough into a rectangle and place the hot dog in the center. Now makes small slits on each side. Now braid the dough over the hot dog as seen in the picture. 20150601_21062220150601_21332820150601_21341120150601_213628

5. Roll out the dough using your hands like a rope/ string. Wind the hotdog using this rolled out rope for the next design.20150601_21514220150601_215241

6. Roll out the dough into a circle. Make slits in the dough as shown in the picture. Slice the hot dogs into 6 pieces and insert the pieces into the six petals of the dough.20150601_21180820150601_214229

  • Place all the prepared hot dog buns onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and let it rest for 40 to 60 minutes.20150601_215336
  • In the meantime, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Beat one egg in a small bowl and use a brush to egg wash the rested dough. Bake it for 10 to 15 minutes or till golden brown in color. 20150601_225229

Custard Cake

20150601_215926This is a combination of deliciousness. Caramel custard and sponge cake merge so well together that it melts in your mouth. In my childhood, my grandpa used to buy me sponge cake from the bakery. I loved its texture. My grandma used to make caramel pudding at home which I absolutely loved.  This is even better as I get the best of both worlds. The sweetness of the custard is balanced off with the airy texture of the sponge cake. Its a must try!

Never thought that a cake and pudding could be combined. This is a classic Filipino recipe and I got the recipe from a youtube recipe video of Sweet Ambitions. Do check the video in case of doubt.

For the Caramel
Sugar – 1 cup

For the Caramel Custard (The Base)
Eggs – 6
Condensed milk – 1 can
Evaporated milk – 1 can
Vanilla essence – 1 tsp
Sugar – 1/4 cup

For the Cake (Sponge Cake)
Baking powder – 1 tsp
Water – 1/4 cup
Whole Milk – 1/4 cup
Egg yolk – 6
Sugar – 1/2 cup
Cake flour – 1.5 cups

Cake Flour – Take out 2 tbsp of flour from 1 cup of all purpose flour and add 2 tbsp of cornstarch to it to get 1 cup of cake flour. Sieve it 3 to 4 times

For the Meringue:
Egg whites – 6
Cream of tartar – 1 tsp
Sugar – 1/2 cup


  • Make the caramel: Heat sugar in a pan and stir it occasionally with a spoon. Let it dissolve and turn amber colored. This will take around 5 to 10 minutes. 20150601_18474020150601_185519
  • Pour into the baking pans. I used two 9 inch baking pans. It tends to harden quickly. So make sure that you spread it quickly around the pan with a spoon before it hardens. 20150601_185849
  • Make the Flan:   In a bowl, add the eggs and sugar and whisk it well. Add the vanilla extract, evaporated milk and condensed milk and whisk well. Add it into the two baking pans on top of the caramel.20150601_19060620150601_19100120150601_191457
  • Prepare the cake batter:
  1. Mix the water and milk together.Set aside.
  2. Mix the cake flour and baking powder together with a whisk or fork. Set aside.
  3. In a bowl, beat together the egg yolks and the sugar. 20150601_193006
  4. Add the milk-water mixture to it and beat well.20150601_193103
  5. Now add the above flour mixture little by little to it and beat well.20150601_193412
  6. Set this mixture aside as the meringue will be folded into this.
  • For the meringue: In the bowl of a stand mixer using the whisk or in a large bowl, using an electric mixer beat egg whites with cream of tartar. When it gets frothy, add sugar to it and continue whisking till it forms firm peaks. 20150601_19431820150601_19414120150601_194838
  • Add the meringue little by little to the set aside cake batter and fold it in.20150601_194956
  • Make sure that you fold it and not beat it in as we are trying to incorporate air into the mixture. 20150601_195649
  • Once ready, pour over the flan into the two pans. 20150601_195856
  • Set a baking tray with water in it on the bottom rack. This would help produce steam in the oven. 20150601_200007
  • Now place the baking pans carefully on the rack above it and bake it at 350 degrees F for an hour. 20150601_200123
  • Once cooled, run the knife around the edges and then turn it upside down onto a plate. Cut and enjoy.20150601_21575320150601_215926



Chicken Tikka Masala

20150420_194906Chicken Tikka Masala is a rich Indian chicken curry which is usually available in restaurants. U can now make it at home especially if you love to barbecue. Its lovely with Basmati rice. Make sure you try to control the portion sizes as its super rich. .

I adapted it from Sanjeev Kapoor’s Khazana.


For the Marinade

Chicken – 1 kg (Cut into medium sized pieces)

Yogurt – 3/4 cup

Ginger Paste

Garlic Paste

Red Chilly pw – 1/2 tsp

Turmeric pw -1/4 tsp

Cumin pw – 1 tsp

Garam Masala – 1 tsp

Salt – to taste

Orange -Red Food Color – 1 pinch

Gram Flour / Besan – 3 tbsp

Mustard oil – 2tbsp

For the Tikka Masala Sauce

Oil – 2 tbsp

Cumin – 1tbsp

Bay Leaves – 1

Cardamons – 3

Cloves – 7

Cinnamon Sticks – 3

Onions(Large) – 2 (chopped)

Ginger Paste – 1 tbsp

Garlic paste- 1tbsp

Coriander Pw – 1.5 tbsp

Turmeric pw – 1/4 tsp

Kashmiri Red Chilly Pw – 1/2 to 1 tbsp

Tomatoes – 3 (chopped)

Cashew Paste – 3 tbsp

Heavy Cream – 1/4 cup

Salt – to taste

Onion pcs – 1(cubed)

Tomato -1 (Cubed but pulp removed)

Green Bell Pepper/ Capsicum – 1 (cubed)


  • Heat oil in a pan and saute the besan on low heat in it till it brings on a nutty flavor. 20150420_17210720150420_172153
  • In a bowl whisk together the above besan paste and all the other ingredients for the marinade. 20150420_172815
  • Add chicken to it and marinate for at least 2 hours. Leaving it overnight would be the best. 20150420_173017
  • Barbecue the chicken and set aside. Cut into smaller pcs when cooled.20150420_185824
  • In a pan, heat oil, add the bay leaf, cardamon, cinnamon and cloves. 20150420_190045
  • Add onions, ginger and garlic paste and saute till light brown in color. 20150420_191008
  • Add coriander pw, kashmiri chilly pw, turmeric pw and saute till the raw flavor has gone. 20150420_191712
  • Add tomatoes and saute till well blended. 20150420_19190320150420_192724
  • Add cashew paste to it and mix well. 20150420_192906
  • Add the chicken, cubed onion and tomato to it and mix again. I haven’t added Green bell peppers here as I didn’t have it at the time of cooking. Please make sure you add it. It would add to the flavor and color.20150420_19335820150420_193653
  • Add the cream, enough water and a pinch of orange-red food color (optional) to make a smooth but thicken sauce. Let it cook for 5 minutes. 20150420_194118
  • Garnish with cilantro. 20150420_194906