Monthly Archives: September 2012

Dilmah Charitea – Thank you Not Quite Nigella

Before I start with today’s post, I would like to say a HUGE thank you to Lorraine from Not Quite Nigella, for giving me two tickets to the invite only – Dilmah Charitea event that happened a couple of weeks ago. I am so sorry for blogging it so late, work has simply been crazy and I’m just finding it hard to catch up with everything :)

A little background about how I won tickets :P, I saw on NQN’s blog that she had an wonderful giveaway and 2 lucky readers were to win 2 tickets to the exclusive Dilmah Charitea, held at the Botanical Gardens on the 3rd of September ~ I was so persistent hehe leaving comments everyday, Sorry Lorraine if I spammed you :) but I really wanted to go because for one I love high teas and have been itching to go and two I think it’s for a great cause!

Eventually, a late Saturday night, I checked my email and got an email from the PR company who organised this event, letting me know I had won tickets to Dilmah’s Charitea and it was going to be held on the following Monday! OMG I was freaking out…I had hurt my foot and the doctor had put me on bed rest…but I really really REALLY wanted to go! So… against Mr Bao’s wishes and my doctors wishes :P I took the afternoon off and went! Don’t worry all is well, I made sure I wasn’t walking much and sat down once we got there :)

Gosh I feel so silly, but even though I’ve lived in Melbourne all my life, this was actually the first time I had visited The Botanical Gardens, but trust me it will NOT be the last time~ it’s so pretty inside, with the lake and the green grass and black swans hehe. Not sure when but I have told Mr Bao we must have a picnic here when it’s warm enough! Any one else who would like to come?

The event was held at the function room inside the Botanical Gardens ‘The Terrence’, a small yet spacious ball room ~ with nicely decorated tables I was then also very lucky to have found out before attending that Adrian from Food Rehab, was going to be there as well! I was once again very lucky and even more excited, because I had been following Adrian’s blog for a long time, and had wanted to meet him in person ~ he was so kind to have saved Mr Bao and I seats.

Soon after we sat down a girl walked up to me and asked if I was ‘Daisy from Never Too Sweet’. I was a little shocked at first but then quickly realized it was Jenny from Ichigo Shortcake! Turns out she was the other lucky Reader! You all need to go hop over to Jenny’s blog, her photos are always perfect and reviews are fair and honest ;) Check out her post about the Dilmah Charitea event too ~

Source: Peter Kuruvita

Patrick Kuruvita acclaimed restaurateur and chef, was the host of this event. and started explaining his experience with the Merrill J Fernando (MJF) charity. He was so sweet and friendly to everyone ~ Then very quietly the waitresses came over and put two 3 tier stands filled full of savouries in front of us.

There were generous servings of everything, starting from the bottom there were a selection of sandwiches. Then in the middle layer it was mini pies, sausage rolls and quiches then to the top was a little brioche piece with duck breast.

Between Ricky and I, we tried most things, and everything was really fresh especially the sandwiches which is hard to find with high teas, as they are usually premade.

The mini pies and sausage rolls were also nice but we much preferred the sandwiches. The duck brioche was lovely too but we felt that the duck was a little underseasoned.

It was then followed by Mr Merrill J Fernando himself giving a short speech, telling us about how founded Dilmah tea and also the charities he has help fund.

Did you know Dilmah is the first company to sell Single Origin Ceylon tea, I have always known Dilmah tea for obviously their tea, but never did I know how sustainable and ethical they were. Mr Dilmah was happy to buy tea leaves from local Sri Lankan tea growers at a higher price, if this meant that the tea was grown ethically and no one is exploited.

It really touched me to see and hear the different types of charities Dilmah does and the number of people it has helped ~ This means, when you drink Dilmah tea you are not helping yourself, because tea had lots of antioxidants. But you are also helping the community that the tea came from :) this is definitely a WIN WIN situation ~

Shortly after the video it was time for the most important part of high tea. The scones and SWEETS ~ there were nice plump and slightly golden brown scones on the bottom tier, followed by chocolate coated strawberries, miniature pastries and chocolate truffles.

Now high tea would be high tea without scones, and scones wouldn’t be complete without jam and cream! I don’t really like cream…but when I have scones…I always slather a huge slab on hehe ~ the scones were light and fluffy, the strawberry jam was also delicious, but I don’t think it was Chantilly cream it was just whipped cream.

I was a greedy little piggy and got to try one of everything hehe yay! Mr Bao didn’t really eat much he was more interested in the savoury lol the mini lemon curd tart was nice but I think I’ve seen it before at some cafes, the chocolate coated strawberry and chocolate truffles were rich and sweet. The macaron was surprisingly soft but Mr Bao liked the strawberry filling ~

But the Orange and Almond baklava DEFINITELY stole the spot light! It was SO delicious! I loved the orange syrup that was used and the soft crunch the almond gave! I think one of the best baklavas I’ve had lately :D No surprise it was the winner.

Two hours flew by us and very quickly the event ended, as we walked out the door, we were both given a gift bag full of Dilmah tea and gifts. Dilmah is so generous, gosh I felt bad, not only did we go as guests, but also got to take home such a packed bag full of gifts. I did manage to share some of the Dilmah tea with my friends and colleagues ~

The Dilmah Charitea event is definitely going to be one that I will never forget, meeting the Fernando family, Peter Kuruvita, Adrian and Jenny, it’ll be perfect if Lorraine was there too. It was also very eye-opening to learn so much about the history of ceylon tea the wonderful things the Dilmah does to help those in need.

Daisy and Mr Bao @ Never Too Sweet attended the Dilmah Chartea event as guests of Dilmah and Not Quite Nigella 

Alphabakes – Sago (Gula Melaka) Pudding

Oh my gosh… is it really the end of September already? It still feels like June to me! But lol nope we are now in the last week of September and next week it’ll already be October wow :) Anyhow, every month I love participating in the Alphabakes, because it allows me to think outside of the box or simply make something I haven’t before ~

Would like to thank Caroline from Caroline Makes and Ros from The More Occasional Baker for hosting it each month, these girls spend so much time each month, writing the round up :) Thanks girls!

This month the letter is ‘P’ and I made a pudding something less unusual and I’m sure many Readers will be very familiar with this dessert ~ it is a Sago (Gula Melaka) Pudding :D Its a very traditional Malaysian dessert and one of my family favourites, whichwe always order when we go out to Malaysian restaurants.

Quick explanation for those who aren’t familiar, sago is the starchy centre found in palm stems and when cooked they become little balls and have a spongy texture. Gula Melaka is Dark palm sugar and is made from the sap of a Palmyra palm ~ it’s super sweet with a slight caramel taste and its own distinct taste :) And to me only this Gula Melaka sugar will make this sago pudding so delicious! Don’t even both using any other sugars you can find, it just wont be the same ~

My sisters and I have been meaning to try making this at home for a long time…but we never knew where we could find Gula Melaka and I was a bit worried about cooking with pandan leaves. That’s why I would like to say Thank You to Ms I-hua for her detailed recipe on her blog, I followed it to the tee and it worked PERFECTLY YAY!

Recipe – Sago (Gula Melaka) Pudding adapted from Ms I-Hua 

Yield – 5 – 6 small ramekins

Ingredients 
1 cup of Sago
4 Pandan leaves
2 liters of Water
1 Egg White
150grams Gula Melaka
275ml of Coconut Milk
Vegetable Oil
Pinch of Salt (I forgot oops :P)

Notes
* You can buy sago at most supermarkets
* You can find Pandan leaves (frozen or fresh) and gula melaka at most Asian groceries

Method
1) Wash, gently bruise and tie your pandan leaves into a knot. Bruising them will help release the fragrance from the pandan leaves.


2) Add water into a large pot and bring to boil. Add sago and pandan leave, and stir to separate grains.
3) As the sago cooks, it will float to the top and become translucent takes around 5 to 7 minutes, best way to check is to taste it, if it is still hard, it is not ready yet.
4) Once sago is cooked, remove the pandan leaves and drain well. Wash the cooked sago with cold tap water thoroughly to remove any excess starch.

5) In the mean time, whip your egg whites until soft peak, fold half of the egg whites into and mix well. This will help bind the sago and keep them separated.


6) Grease ramekins with vegetable oil with a pastry brush and place sago into each individual ramekin. Cover with cling wrap and place in the refrigerator to chill for 1-2 hours.

7) To make the Gula Melaka sugar syrup, shave the sugar with a knife and place into a saucepan with a tablespoon of water. Place over medium heat and melt gently, be careful not to burn it, you may need to add more water to dilute it :)

8) Warm the coconut milk in another saucepan and heat it over low heat until it simmers. If you find it too thick, you may need to add some cows milk to make it pouring cream consistency. Leave to cool and chill in the refrigerator.

9) To serve, turn the sago pudding from the ramekin into a bowl. Pour a general amount of coconut milk and then drizzle a tablespoon or two or like me THREE tablespoons :D

I am so so so happy :) I never thought I’d be able to make this dessert at home hehe woo hoo so happy still have 2 in the fridge can’t wait to eat them ALL but… I’ve finished all of the Gula Melaka syrup… need to remake it WAKAKKAA!

Sunday Bliss – Sweet Crumble

I just realised I have been posting more and more recipes on my blog and the recipe page is slowly growing in size  ~ but I think it’s time to do a review and not any review ~  a review of a newish bakery I found in Malvern – Sweet Crumble.

Sweet Crumble opened up in March this year and since finding out about it, I have been meaning to visit…but never got around to it~  so finally on Sunday, Mr Bao and I had brunch at home then slowly made our way there. I was really interested to find out from an Instagrammer  that some of their cupcakes were kosher dairy free so good for those who are dairy intolerant or vegan :)

We were so lucky that we found parking right across Sweet Crumble on the usually busy Glenferrie road. I immediately smiled seeing the sign ‘Sweet Crumble’ it reminds me so much of Magnolia Bakery in NYC ~Then when I walked it, I was totally grinning from ear to ear, because I knew it was going to be a blissful afternoon  ~ it’s so pretty inside, with vintage chairs, tables and all the glass jars filled with cookies and lollies.

Then we were confronted by this huge cabinet full of cupcakes, macarons, cookies, biscotti, cakes and more. I had to stand in front of it for a good minute absorbing everything that was in front of me before I could decide hahaha Mr Bao didn’t care what we ordered, he just wanted a Chai Latte Iced Frappe and that was it ~ gosh I love eating out with this guy hahaha he lets me choose everything :P

Red velvet cupcake dairy free $3.5AUD

Even though there were lots of different cupcakes, I immediately knew I wanted to try the red velvet cupcake ~ just like my mocha, I always get that at cupcake bakeries to me it’s like the benchmark if their red velvets are good, the other cupcakes are usually good too hehe. The had the normal sized cupcake or the smaller size but not exactly mini which was a dollar cheaper, it may shock you but I actually chose the smaller cupcake :P so then I could order more desserts and try other things hehe ~ Unfortunately, though neither of us liked the red velvet cupcake here at Sweet Crumble, the cake itself was a little dry and too dense. But the most disappointing would have to be the frosting, because this is a dairy free red velvet, it wasn’t the traditional cream cheesecheese frosting, instead it was a sweet yet slightly rubbery icing, I think they must have used vegetable shortening to imitate the butter cream texture.

Macarons $2.5AUD each (Left coconut, right espresso)

Next up was the macarons ~ they had quite a few flavours, if I could I would order them all hehe :P but we had a dinner date that night, so we had to control. I wanted something out of the ordinary so I chose the coconut and Mr Bao needed a coffee-fix and ordered the espresso flavour. Starting with the coconut macaron it had a nice shell but was slightly crunchy but it tasted lovely, with a strong hit of coconut yummmmm. Then Mr Bao’s espresso flavoured macaron was just as good with a genuine coffee flavour and not that artificial flavouring.

Passion fruit cheesecake with salted caramel $6.5 AUD

You didn’t think I’d be done right hahaha so I went back and ordered a passion fruit cheesecake with salted caramel base, Mr Bao loved this cheesecake, saying it was smooth and velvety. I really liked it to, but did think the passion fruit was a little too sour and tangy compared to the cheesecake ~ but still very delicious!

Chai Latte Frappe $6AUD

Mr Bao was really intrigued by the flavour hehe ~ he really liked it describing it as refreshing with a light chai flaovur and very milky, I had a sip and thought it was quite nice too but the flavours weren’t very strong and think it would’ve been better if there was less milk hehe

Toffee Caramel Frappe $6AUD

I’ve always liked caramel but lately, I can’t get enough of it hehe ~ just like Mr Bao’s Chai Latte, flavours were subtle and tasted very much like plain milk with hints of caramel ~ it was definitely refreshing especially after eating some desserts, but being a sugar freak hehe I think it needed to be sweeter hehe

Peppermint Tea $3.5AUD

I think Mr Bao had too much dessert ~ and needed to order a peppermint tea to refresh his palate hahaha :P the tea bags are actually from Henry London, which I have heard of, however, haven’t had the chance to try their teas. It was refreshing with a strong peppermint flavour, but think we are use to and prefer T2’s tea instead.

Sweet Crumble also sells and stocks a range of goodies ~ such as their homemade honeycomb, biscotti, cookies and also mini Bonne Maman jam jars ~ they are sooooooooooo SUPER cute I couldn’t help but get them hehe ~ the honeycomb is so delicious! Crunchy, sweet and just yum :D

Mr Bao and I sure had a blissful afternoon here at Sweet Crumble ~ There were some hit and misses, but as a whole it’s a definitely a great place to have afternoon tea with friends or grab desserts. A great addition to the dessert scene in Melbourne hehe hope you all have a blissful weekend too :)

Sweet Crumble on Urbanspoon

Happy Birthday – My Dearest Sister :)

August, September and October are the busiest months in the year for me! People that are most important to me, all have their birthdays in these months, and today it is my Dearest Sister Win Win’s birthday :D I’m not gonna disclose her age, because I know she’ll hurt me :P As a matter of fact, I don’t think she even wants me to upload a picture of her but TOO BAD, my blog, my rules!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY WIN WIN!
You are the ROCK in my life, the one that never leaves, always supports me through the pretty, ugly and fatty times ~ I am so grateful to have grown up with you, shared tears and laughter and last but not least lots of delicious and yummy DESSERTS!
I hope the Police (her husband) will spoil you rotten today and Aden will give you lots of hugs and kisses!

I think it’s become my tradition to make virtual cakes and send them to my friends and family in HK :) so today, I’m making Nigella Lawson’s Chocolate Hazelnut Cheesecake! It’s a brand new recipe from her new book Nigelissma, that I bought last week. As soon as I picked up the book and flipped through it, I knew I had to make this recipe :)

Win Win loves cheesecake and I’m pretty sure she likes Nutella too so this would be a great cake for her ~ I would describe it as New York Cheesecake with Nutella :) that’s how rich and yummy this cheesecake is hehe and best part it’s SO SO SO easy to make! It’s no bake and only uses 60 grams of icing sugar for sweetness hehe really hope Win Win will like this cake ~

Recipe – Chocolate Hazelnut Cheesecake adapted from Nigella Lawson

Yield - 22 or 23 cm spring form cake or serves 8 to 12

Ingredients
250 grams Digestive Biscuits
75grams Unsalted butter, soften
1 x 400 gram Nutella or other similar hazelnut chocolate spreads, at room temperature 
100 grams Toasted hazelnuts, chopped
500 grams, cream cheese, at room temperature
60 grams, Icing sugar sifted

Method
1) Break the digestive biscuits into the bowl of a food processor, then add the butter and 1x 15ml of Nutella and blitz until the mixture starts to clump. Add 25 grams of toasted hazelnut, pulse until you have a damp, sandy mixture OR do it all manually, crush the biscuits in a ziploc bag and a rolling pin, melt the butter and stir in Nutella and eventually hazelnuts :) I couldn’t find my food processor :P


2) Tip this into your spring form tin and press into the base, using either your hands or the back of the spoon. Place in the refrigerator to chill while you make the filling.


3) Beat together the cream cheese and the icing sugar until smooth and silk, then scrape the rest of the Nutella out of its jar and into the cream cheese mixture and continue beating until well combined. You may need to scrape the bowl a couple of times.


4) Take the spring form tin out of the fridge. Carefully scrape and smooth the Nutella mixture over the biscuit base and scatter the remaining chopped hazelnuts on top to cover. Place the tin in the fridge for at least 4 hours or overnight.


5) To serve, remove from the fridge, and unspring the cake from the tin, still on the base, just before you eat it.

Notes
– 
Nigella emphasises that the cream cheese and Nutella must be room temperature for this recipe to work, which makes sense, because this is a no-bake cheesecake recipe and because you need to make sure both ingredients are mixed and incorporated well :)
– I halved the recipe to make two mini 6 inch cakes ~ Perfect for Mr Bao and myself, one each no need to fight :P
– Make sure you chill it well before eating!

There you go Sis! Hope you like this Nutella Cheesecake :) Love you always xox

First Guest Post – Go Bake Yourself (Uru)

Hello everyone :) hope you’ve had a nice weekend ~ today it’s going to be a super short post from me, because I am guest posting for the very first time at Go Bake Yourself. I’m sure many already know Uru but for those who don’t, she’s a a young, passionate and talented teenage girl from Sydney. She has an amazing blog, sharing wonderful recipes with occasional reviews of cafes and restaurants.

She’s currently doing her exams, therefore, doesn’t have enough time to blog and asked for volunteers to guest post while she takes a short break ~ I’ve been following Uru’s blog for quite some time and immediately jumped the opportunity :) I had some trouble deciding on what recipe to share… a cake recipe? Cupcake recipe? Then I decided to share a Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe, because Uru identifies herself as ‘Choc Chip Uru’ on her blog ~ couldn’t think of a better recipe to share with her and her Readers.

I’ve been testing out a few chocolate chip cookie recipes, and I personally like the texture of Mrs Field’s cookies and have been trying to replicate them. That’s when I remembered buying David Lebovitz Ready For Desserts book and decided to give him recipe a go :) And boy am I glad I did ~ it is by far the yummiest chocolate chip cookies I have made so far! Mr Bao ate 5 of these cookies in a row LOL and he claims he doesn’t even have a sweet tooth :P

Please hop over to Uru’s blog for the recipe ~ I know we all have our own chocolate chip cookie but please give these a try, it’s SO delicious!

Would also like to thank Uru for giving me the opportunity to guest post on Go Bake Yourself! Good luck with all your exams and can’t wait till you blog again :D

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