weeklydelights


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Mantou (Chinese Steamed Buns)

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With the cold weather alerts that we have been receiving, I have been craving mantous which are these amazing fluffy plain buns that are divine. Mantous are native to Northern China but they are so commonly eaten that you can find them in just about any dim sum restaurants. They can be eaten plain as part of a meal or deep-fried with condensed milk as a dessert. Although these guys look simple, don’t be fooled as making any type of bread is a labour of love.

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Salted Caramel Cookies

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I didn’t think it was possible but after baking as much as I did this past holiday season, I think it was safe to say that I was cookied out for 2016. Thankfully, it is a new year so the cookie quota starts all over again. I normally make classic cookies as gifts for family and friends such as gingersnaps or chocolate chips but I had wanted to change it up. My attempt on the salted caramel cookies had some ups and downs with the ones that did not turn out properly ending up in my stomach.

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I didn’t realize that there were so many types of sea salts which was a learning process for me. With this cookie, I only had coarse sea salt on hand so I used that which wasn’t the best idea as it really made it salty. However, with the subsequent batches I managed to get my hands on flaked sea salt which is a lot lighter and easier to crush by hand when you are trying to garnish the cookies. Lesson learned. I am not sure what kind of cookies I will make this year but I think I will be a tad bit more cautious this time around.

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Lobster Lasagna

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I wish I could take credit for this but this all goes to my cousin who is just amazing in the kitchen. With Christmas, we had several dinners and there was inevitably leftovers. For Christmas Eve, we had lobster and then for Christmas Day I went over to my cousin’s for dinner and she turned it into a lasagna which was out of the world. She made sure you used every piece of the lobster so none would go to waste and what was particularly inventive in my opinion was her using the lobster shell to make a broth out of it. I know about using animal bones but it actually never occurred to me that you can use lobster shells. I still have a lot to learn.

If anyone is interested in her Instagram feed, please check out this link.


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Happy New Year – Cinnamon Buns

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With 2017, I wanted to challenge myself in the kitchen but at the same time I didn’t want to overburden myself which is why I decided on cinnamon buns. Most kids at one point grew up on the delightful world of Pillsbury which I still love but I figured why not try to make them from scratch. During the previous years, my new years eve tend to be uneventful (code: boring) especially after the holidays when I can definitely benefit from a quiet evening to recover.

Since I don’t own a dough mixer, I decided to go old school by kneading the dough by hand which is a great way to relieve stress. Dough kneading was just the beginning in my journey to baking the cinnamon buns as I had to wait for the dough to proof.

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The next morning, the dough doubled in size and it was finally ready to be worked on. Making cinnamon buns took a bit of patience but its one of those attributes that I am constantly working on. Rolling out the dough and adding in the filling was actually the easiest part of the whole process because I have found that if you don’t proof the dough properly then the whole thing just go to waste.

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Phew, after all these steps you would think that you can just pop them in the oven but the bread needed to go proofing one more time before it can fully be cooked.

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Finally, the last step which is cream cheese icing which was not really done with much care because I was just really hungry….

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Hush – Lasse Lindh

I have always found that Korean dramas have a lot musical gems in their soundtracks and latest song that I have discovered is a new song from Lasse Lindh.  I have always found his lyrics to be heartfelt and with his voice, there is something oddly calming about it. Hopefully everyone is having a calm start to a snowy Monday.


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Starbucks Hong Kong

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In my recent trip to Hong Kong, I had a craving for Starbucks which is not exactly a surprise to those that know me. There is something magical and mystical about caffeine but while coffee is pretty much standard in their locations around the world, the pastries are not. I have had my share of muffins over the years but this was my first time trying a matcha red bean muffin which surprisingly works.