Saturday, 23 May 2015

My Mother-In-Law's Madeira Cake (Nigella Lawson)

Whenever I hear a recipe that was passed down by mother or mother in law.  I envy that person who is so generous in sharing it with others.

I have grandmothers and mother who are great cooks but unfortunately only a tiny percentage is being passed down.  During my grandmas' era, they cooked by estimation and I was way too young to be inquisitive. 

For my mom, many had since forgotten due to old age.  I wish I had picked up this interest earlier so that I can have it documented.  It is sad.  That is why I wanted to document my learning journey for my children.  Hopefully later on in life, they will make use of this.

Anyway, for this month Bake Along, the chosen theme is My Mother In Law's Madeira Cake.  

Many cake decorating books use Madeira Cake as their base because it is sturdy enough to hold up all the fondant cake decoration.  So if you want to bake a cake for your kids, you might want to consider using Nigella's recipe as hers is one of the most popular hit in cyberworld. (see Bake for Happy Kid research)

Verdict: The cake is light and what I love best is the lemony taste.  Definitely a keeper.  I also baked this in the air fryer and it did turn out well.

Adapted from : How to be a Domestic Goddess by Nigella Lawson or here

What you need:

70g unsalted butter (softened)  
70g caster sugar (plus extra for sprinkling)  
grated zest of ½ unwaxed lemon
20ml lemon juice
1 large eggs
70g self-raising flour
30g plain flour


Greased and lined 8 x 17 cm loaf tin or 5" round pan.  Preheat oven to 170ºC.

Beat butter and sugar until light.

Add in lemon zest.

Add egg one at a time with a tbsp of the flour for each.

Then slowly fold in the rest of the flour and the lemon juice.

Note: The cake batter can be very thick thus spread the batter with a spoon or spatula evenly in the prepared pan.

Sprinkle with 1 tsp of caster sugar before baking.

Bake for 25 mins or until cake is done.

Cool in pan before further cooling on rack.

For airfryer: 160ºC for 17 - 20 mins

I'm submitting this post to Bake Along #79 organized by Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids, Joyce of kitchenflavours and Lena of herfrozenwings.

Enjoy your weekend.

Friday, 22 May 2015

Waldorf Salad (chicken)

I remembered my first experience eating Waldorf Salad (chicken) was in Milano's Pizza (now defunct) 

Being not a very salad person, I really love this salad very much.  The taste is so well rounded, you have tang from the apple, the sweetness from the raisins and the crunch from the walnut and celery.  

Later on, we used to have it as our dinner.  An easy to prepare meal for just the two of us after work.  With added chicken, this salad is like a complete meal.

My children are slowly picking up appreciating salad and this is a good salad I think to start changing their perception.

Verdict: I added too much lemon juice so the next round I will reduce this.  I am not sure whether added a little bit more honey will alter the taste but I will try next round.

What you need:
Serve 4

3 chicken breast
3 green apples cored and diced
8 sticks celery, diced
80g raisin
100g chopped walnuts
110g Japanese mayonnaise
1½ tbsp lemon juice (adjusted from 2 tbsp)
25g honey

salt and pepper to taste


Steam chicken breast.  Cool and cut into cubes.

Add the chicken cubes, apples, raisins and celery to a medium sized bowl.

In another small bowl, whisk the Japanese mayo, lemon juice and honey together. Taste to your preference.

Season with salt and pepper.

Drizzle the dressing to the salad and gently toss to distribute the sauce evenly.

Add chopped walnuts and serve.

Eat on its own at room temperature or chilled 

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Mushroom and Bacon Pasta

My kids love pasta especially my son.  They started off with lasagna, meatball spaghetti and subsequently carbonara and since then, carbonara got stuck there.

For an alternative choice, today I did spaghetti aglio e olio topped with mushroom and bacon (both my family's favourite).

Am glad that Mushroom and Bacon Pasta turn out good.

What you need:

500g mushroom, sliced
10 clove garlic, minced
500g bacon, diced
½ cup white wine
a sprig of rosemary
Salt and pepper to taste
½ - 1 cup pasta water
400g pasta

Garnish with Parmesan cheese


Fry bacon until it is crisp.  Drain and set aside.

Bring to boil a big pot of water, add in salt and a drizzle of olive oil.  Add pasta and cook until it is al dente.

Meanwhile, heat pan to very hot, add olive oil.

Add in the minced garlic and saute until fragrant and a light golden.  DO NOT BROWN it.

Add in sliced mushroom.  Mixed until it is well combined with garlic.

Add in white wine and rosemary.  Bring to a boil or until mushroom soften.

Remove pasta from water, set aside ½ – 1 cup of pasta water.  

Add in the cooked pasta into the mushroom sauce.  

Add in ½ cup pasta water.  Mix well.  

Season with salt and pepper.

Before serving add in the bacon as we like it still crisp. 

Garnish with Parmesan cheese. 

Are you looking forward to end of school term?  I do.