Coffee & Cake @ Assembly Coffee on 17Mar2016

coffee + apply crumble with ice cream

coffee + apple crumble with ice cream

3 OPS (Outram Primary School) classmates came over to my place & we had a nice, enjoyable homecooked lunch on 17.3.2016. ^^

after a great lunch, dessert, chit chat, we decided to go out for a cuppa.

one friend had to leave so 3 of us went to assembly coffee at evans road in 1 car. 🙂

we ordered cappuccino, flat white, hot chocolate + one apple crumble to share.

last time i came here was with family on 28.12.2014. that time the latte art was good & lemon meringue was very good!

apple crumble with ice cream

apple crumble with ice cream

lemon meringue ran out this time.

my friend ordered an apple crumble to share.

it was pretty good actually. apple was not too sweet, nicely done, texture & taste. crumle top was great & the pie base was good too.

maybe i can make this cake.  i make an ok jam crumb cake. & before that i made a pretty good apple pie too. so maybe can combine the 2 together.

flat white

flat white

i had my usual flat white. no much latte art today. barista not around?

coffee is good here though not really standout vs say chye seng huat at tyrewhitt road & dutch colony at pasarbella @ grandstand or carpenters & cook.

it was great spending time with old friends from primary school. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

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Tiramisu – A Charming Dessert

tiramisu

tiramisu – a charming dessert

my wife & i are not very dessert people. so i never thought i would get into cakes & baking etc. 🙂

i chanced on the chocolate lava cake early on. it was easy to make, had the wow factor and solve my problem of having to buy cakes or just eat fruits after my homecooked dinners which i started in mar2012. 🙂

after that i tried apple pie. it was pretty good or at least ok, but if i also had to make the dough which i did, it was quite a bit of trouble, so i made about 3 apple pies & gave it up.

after a very long break, like almost 2 years since my first lava cake (& i also stopped lava cake for 9 months having gotten tired of it after serving it for many homecooked dinners), i tried a jam crumb cake which was pretty good as well, though it had far less wow factor. then in may2014, after buying the tofu cheesecake from sun with moon wheelock for my domestic helper’s birthday, i again chanced on a tofu cheese cake. it was easy too like the lava cake, all you have to do was blend. 🙂

so tofu cheese cake went on for couple of months, & i made it again for a friend’s party this evening. anyhow i was inspired by 1 of my wife’s friend who did an awesome tiramisu.

after googling for the recipe including videos recipes, i did my no-bake tiramisu for the very first time, and it turned out wonderfully the first time, on 26.7.2014. i was happy enough with it to serve it to my friends at a 11pax lobster menu dinner on 30.7.2014 & everyone simply swore by it, and according to one, it now displaced my lava cake & tofu cheese cake as his favourite, but you know often times it’s just a change, something new for the time. 🙂

tiramisu

tiramisu – a charming dessert

it was a surprise to me but as it turned out, tiramisu was the easiest of all the desserts i have made. 🙂

i used 1/2 portion of the video recipe i saw here.

i separated the egg yolks & white of 3 eggs. my son had bought me a hand mixer from UK when he was back in dec2013 & i decided to use it for the first time.

whisking the eggs to soft peaks was a breeze. 🙂 i added 2 tablespoon sugar as i whisked to soft peaks, as chef john of food wishes.com called, the shaving cream consistency. haha! 🙂

i added 250g mascarpone cheese to the yolks & whisked to get the nice custard. then i folded the meringue in 2 batches into the custard. that’s done.

i put 200ml freshly grounded expresso from my coffee machine in a flat dish & added 1.2 tablespoon of brandy (otard), 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence & 1 teaspoon sugar.

then i took the savoiardi finger biscuits & dipped them lightly in the expresso & lined one layer on the glass dish. i added 1/2 the custard then another layer & the custard again. i finished off by dusting cocoa powder through a sieve & then using a large knife scrapped the chocolate flakes from the back of a chocolate bar & added to the cake. then i left it in the fridge overnight.

tiramisu

tiramisu

tiramisu

tiramisu

tiramisu

tiramisu

tiramisu

tiramisu

tiramisu

tiramisu – a charming dessert

well the result was nothing less than sensational, not too sweet, nice expresso & liquor, and marvellously consistent malleable textured cake. 🙂

i think i know what’s the next cake i will try to make – a banoffee cake!

c.h.e.f andy

Ingredients –

  • 250g mascarpone cheese
  • 3 eggs separate into egg yolks & whites
  • 16 finger savoiardi biscuits
  • 200ml expresso
  • 4 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • default 2 tablespoon brandy (sometimes i use 4 tbsp or 60ml for some of my friends who love more brandy, haha!)^^

Directions –

  1. separate the egg yolks & whites of 3 eggs.
  2. using a hand mixer, whisk the eggs to soft peaks. add 2 tablespoon sugar as you whisk to soft peaks, as chef john of food wishes.com called, the shaving cream consistency.
  3. add 250g mascarpone cheese to the yolks & whisk to get the nice custard. then fold the meringue in 2 batches into the custard.
  4. put 200ml freshly grounded expresso in a flat dish & add 1.5 tablespoon of brandy (otard), 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence & 1 teaspoon sugar.
  5. then take the savoiardi finger biscuits & dip them lightly in the expresso & line one layer on the glass dish. add1/2 the custard then another layer of finger biscuits & the custard again. finish off by dusting cocoa powder through a sieve & then using a large knife scrap chocolate flakes from the back of a chocolate bar & add to the cake. then i leave it in the fridge overnight.

Top Quality Lunch @ Les Amis on 1Apr2014

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bread bast=baguette, sour dough, walnut bread

a good friend bought lunch at les amis on 1.4.2014. no april fool haha. 🙂

i must have not stepped into les amis for 5, maybe 10 years? though i did have excellent meals at au jardin (it’s now closed) couple times a year. always thought it was very ex…some months back they introduced this 4-course set lunch. having taken the food, i think it is excellent value-for-money at S$45pax, one of the nest lunches i had. 🙂

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flat brioche with olives & sundried tomatoes

we started with a bread basket of baguette, sour dough & a very good walnut bread PLUS a truly superb bread (brioche texture) with olive, sundried tomatoes? etc. just fabulous! 🙂

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tomato confit on bead of grilled aubergines & filo pastry

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tomato confit on bead of grilled aubergines & filo pastry

#1 & the tomato confit was incredible! 🙂 it was on a bed of grilled aubergine on filo pastry. there are tomato confit & there are tomato confit, but this was just excellent!

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green pea soup

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green pea soup

#2 green pea soup not my favourite, but this was again very good indeed! very smooth & nicely creamy. i may get to like green pea soup a bit more. 🙂

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patagonia toothfish (chilean seabass)

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beautiful red cabbage

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chilean seabass & red cabbage

#3 there was a choice of patagonia toothfish (chilean seabass, my favourite fish, over cod) OR roast pigeon. both of us took the chilean sea bas. it was as good as chilean seabass usually were. the sweet red cabbage was ok but not quite my type – i finished about 40% of it.

while this fish never fails to meet expectations as you need a bad chef to screw this up, the tomato confit way surpassed expectations – most places would get it bad or mediocre.

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walnut apple pie

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chocolate mousee

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#4 the dessert of the day a walnut apple pie? was likewise not my favourite, but again it was superbly done. 🙂 fillings not sickeningly sweet & very good pastry. the chilled chocolate mousse was very good too.

the S$60 lunch menu came with line caught seabass & choice of lobster pasta & australian wagyu etc. i had some doubts on the line-caught thingy being any different from usual & seabass like low down c/w the chilean seabass but the cooking standards here really good i will probably try it.

i was also curious about the 6-course S$120 menu. it said grilled dry aged beef so i asked the waiter (he was very knowledgeable) why this was better than the australian wagyu in the S$60 menu. he said it was OHMI WAGYU! i told him omg! ohmi (a top 3 japanese wagyu) & you don’t write that in your menu? my, my!

i had an excellent degustation at jaan on 20.1.2014 with some friends recently, and we were lucky to trade our pigeon (which was good too) for miyazaki dry-aged wagyu, but this was ohmi, not miyazaki!

i told the waiter this the second time i came across dry-aged japanese wagyu (first was jaan). dry ageing intensifies the flavours & results in substantial weight lost. japanese wagyu is so ex & already very marbled & very intense in flavours i don’t see them served dry aged in japan. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Jam Crumb Cake

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jam crumb cake

made a very good jam crumb cake yesterday 19.3.2014. 🙂

i not a very dessert person. so far my solitary repertoire has been the chocolate lava cake. i did a lemon lava cake variation & also an apple pie which were pretty ok & i had served them once or twice during my home dinners with friends, but they didn’t quite inspire me.

i am doing a 10pax dinner on 24.3.2014 & was looking up doable online dessert recipes. last november 2013 a friend’s wife did a very good jam cake which i liked for a lovely home fine dining dinner – so inspired i looked up a few recipes and found this jam crumb cake recipe on epicurean.

the first attempt turned out pretty good, anyway i like it enough to post & share. 🙂

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jam crumb cake

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jam crumb cake

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jam crumb cake

i have never baked a whole cake my entire life. the lava cake was the first but those were in muffin tray. i also did the lemon lava cake variation (in muffin tray as well) & the apple pie. that was about it. & i had badly failed couple times attempting macarons. so i did not know what to expect mixing flour & butter & sugar & milk & making the crumbs. anyway i followed the recipe mostly with some adjustment (like reducing the sugar & the recipe for the crumbs taking in the feedback from comments of others who had attempted the recipe).

the jam crumb cake came up beautifully, by my lowly standard anyway. the flavour & texture were great & not too sweet, and the cinnamon did the magic. I would increase the crumbs a little for my next cake & also swirl in more jam. otherwise everything was near perfect.

my adapted recipe is below. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Ingredients-

For cake

  1. 1 cup all-purpose flour
  2. 1/2 cup sugar (to reduce further to 1/3)
  3. 1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
  4. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  5. 3/4 stick unsalted butter, melted (i used about 40g)
  6. 1/2 cup milk
  7. 1 large egg
  8. 1/2 cup raspberry jam or preserves (i used not enough, need to add more)

For crumb topping

  1. 25g unsalted butter, melted
  2. 2 tbsp brown sugar
  3. 1 tsp cinnamon
  4. 1/8 teaspoon salt
  5. 1/2 cup all-purpose flour (will increase to 2/3 cup)
  6. preparation

Directions –

Make cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F (205°C). Generously butter a 9-inch square or round cake pan.
  2. Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, milk and salt.
  3. Whisk together melted butter and egg in a large bowl, then whisk into flour mixture until just combined. Pour batter into cake pan. Dollop jam all over surface, then swirl into batter with spoon.

Make crumb topping:

  1. Whisk together butter, sugar, cinnamon, and salt until smooth. Stir in flour, then blend with your fingertips until incorporated. Sprinkle crumbs in large clumps over top of cake.
  2. Bake cake until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean and sides begin to pull away from pan, about 25 minutes. Cool in pan on a rack 5 minutes.