8 French Toast Ideas

I feel incredibly bad that I’ve been off the radar for so long; no explanation is suitable to explain this lack of update. But if you will, I’ve been incredibly busy (as with all others) and I’ve also been trying to figure out some things in my life.

Back to the topic; French toast. I do have a major sweet tooth. And I can eat French toast for dinner. Though it doesn’t mean I should, cos y’know, adult responsibilities. HAHA but anyway the other day I was thinking of some ideas for French Toasts and thought maybe this would be great for people who want to add some variation to their French Toast. Just take the basics and tweak the toppings. And hey, there’s even a healthier alternative ‘cause my friends know I’m healthy like that.

1) Maple Syrup

Bring me the maple syrup. Maple syrup is just..gold. Pancakes, waffles, French toast, drizzle a good maple syrup on it and we’re good to go. Hey, if you’re a beginner and don’t really cook, grab a bottle of maple syrup and pour it liberally over your French toast? Maybe it’s just a good excuse to eat more maple syrup.

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Picture Credit: mountainmamacooks.com

2) Berry Compote

Blackberry compote, strawberry compote, blueberry compote. Add a little tang to balance out the sweet dish. If you crave sweets as much as I do, just add more sugar while preparing your berry compote. Or else, just let it balance out the sweetness of the dish.

3) Salted Caramel

Everyone’s dream. Make some salted caramel sauce and water it down with thickened cream in a pan to taste and voila! Add it to your French toast and it’s another excuse to eat some salted caramel. Be careful though, while making the French toast itself, the amount of sugar should be reduced; salted caramel can be rather sweet.

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Photo Credit: sallysbakingaddiction.com

4) Caramelized fruits

My favourite; caramelized bananas add a depth of flavour to the French Toast. Caramelizing the fruit brings out the natural sugar in the fruit, especially bananas and gives a beautiful depth and flavour. I’m kidding about the favorite part though. I love everything too much to commit to any option.

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5) Bacon

Because. Bacon. Come on.  This needs no further explanation. Everyone needs some bacon in their life. And it’s a plus that the savoriness balances out the sweetness!

6) Ice cream

In Singapore, we can eat ice cream anytime anywhere. The weather justifies everything; it’s constantly summer. Put a scoop of ice cream or gelato (if you’d like) over it and watch your mouth enjoy the fireworks in your mouth; the contrast between the warmth of the French Toast and the chill from the ice cream in this weather will be heavenlyyyy.

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Photo Credit: twopeasandtheirpod.com

7) Greek yogurt, berry compote and honey

For a healthier version, try adding a dollop of greek yogurt instead of ice cream or anything too sweet. This ensures that you get your protein, vitamins and nutrients; key to a wholesome breakfast. The slight tang from greek yogurt, is balanced out by natural honey and the berry compote.

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Photo Credit: Pinterest

8) Macerated fruits

If you don’t want to add extra sugar to your French toast, try macerating some fruits. Cut some strawberries (or any berries) and let it sit in a flavoured liquid (freshly squeezed orange juice, apple juice for a healthy version. Champagne. Or rum for a not-so-healthy one. Just saying). This doesn’t need to be cooked; unlike the berry compote and I like that it’s fresh and doesn’t require any extra pots!

martha stewart
Photo Credit: Marthastewart.com

Cranberry and Christmas Baking

I’ve been test baking for Christmas (and studying, *cough* of course *cough*) while Yufan has been down with submissions. Christmas baking is never too early…right? I get really excited for Christmas and attempt to give everyone who’s important a box of desserts that I put effort in making; it’s my way of saying thanks for existing or helping me out at any point in time. Kind of bummed that I won’t be around this Christmas though!

Cranberries are really in season for Christmas and Thanksgiving (October to December) and great for incorporating in desserts. To prep, rinse and discard any discolored or soft berries; there’s no need to thaw before use even if the berries are frozen.

This week, I made jars of cranberry jams and fillings, putting them aside for breakfasts and baking. The cranberry filling can be used as jam (just cook till it thickens till jam consistency, blend it up in a good blender and store it in a sanitized jar) or in any other recipes (scones, cupcakes and with white chocolate cheesecakes, anyone?)

 

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Recipe for Cranberry Filling

1 Cup Cranberries (Frozen or Fresh)

¼ heaping cup of sugar (more if desired)

2-3 tbsp of Orange Juice

Directions:

  1. Cook till mixture thickens and cranberries burst.
  2. Adjust to desired level of sweetness and add more sugar if required.
  3. Leave to cool
  4. Process/Blend in a food processor/blender till smooth. (optional)

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Ideas for Cranberry Filling:

I used the filling to make a shortbread instead of a pie this time because cranberry is a little tart and putting it in a pie would mean that there would be a generous portion of cranberry inside. It is pretty strong (at least to me) so I worked with a thin layer; using it as a layer between the shortbread. The result? A buttery, crumbly, sweet with a little lift from the cranberries in every bite. For  an extra measure, I added a scoop of vanilla ice cream and the juxtaposition between the different temperatures, together with the different textures, was quite lovely if I may say so myself. Happy (experimental) Christmas baking!

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What’s Baking

So the other day I went into this crazy baking phase in an attempt to relieve stress and ‘find’ myself back. I guess I’ve always loved the therapy that baking brings. Like exercise, in that moment, you focus on nothing but the task itself. That being said, I’ve quite a short attention span…So if I don’t concentrate or if I’m too tired, you’ll see me forgetting to put ingredients in sometimes HAHA but well…..at least I always realize in time (thank goodness). We now have a whole lot of pictures thanks to Yufan! And the mini cakestand I bought actually came to good use! I solemnly swear I’m not trying to justify my purchases.

First up, one of my favourite cupcakes, Carrot Cake Cupcake. It’s the combination of the taste of molasses (from the brown sugar) and cinnamon without being too sweet that really draws me in. Topped with a smooth and luscious cream cheese frosting, both flavors complement each other. And I love how it’s incredibly moist.

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Recently I’ve been playing around with Red Velvet. I’m not particularly fond of Red Velvet (cos of the food coloring) but as always, I’m always curious about how to get a good RV cupcake. And I proceed to ply my friend who’s in love with RV to try them (best of both worlds?!) It’s a well balanced cupcake; with hints of cocoa and vanilla. And Red Velvet and Cream Cheese Frosting is a must…right? Am thinking of mixing things up now though!

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I also made dark chocolate cupcakes! Cos..you know…chocolate solves all problems. The dark chocolate cupcake is more intensely chocolate flavoured, rich and less sweet than most chocolate cupcakes I’ve tried (Well..maybe cos it’s dark chocolate cupcakes. Go figure.) For this, I added espresso buttercream for the frosting. I’ve always felt that buttercream is way too sweet (other than Swiss Meringue Buttercream) so I used espresso to balance out the sweetness🙂

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This cake is a variation of the cupcake; made this for my ex-colleagues at the previous company I interned at. It’s a dark chocolate cake with dark chocolate ganache. I adore ganache; it’s simple, not too sweet and impossibly smooth. I usually don’t do this but there’s a twist to this cake! I added a little baileys into the ganache to further bring out the taste of the dark chocolate. The careless me did not clean up the sides of the cake properly though so it looks a little…organic (HAHA)

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Anyway, these bakes are all up for sale! I’d be more than happy to bake for you and share my love for cakes; these are just some of the flavors available-You can find the updated gallery at the top right hand corner and/or drop me an email at sundayteapartyorders@gmail.com and I’ll send you the whole list!

Italian-style Carbonara

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I’ve never really been a carbonara/pasta person…it’s always either been too creamy or just..too much. Until one day, I went to Cambodia some time ago and dined at a place owned by an Italian.

The carbonara my friend had was just right, not too creamy or sickening. That began my lukewarm love for pastas. I started to eat a lot more pastas than usual; trying out different types of pastas and eventually fell in love with Italian pastas. They are simple and pure; just requiring good ingredients.

The Italian method of preparing carbonara does not require any cream at all; just good parmesan cheese (get Parmigiano Reggiano if possible) and eggs. And 15 minutes (!!) Fast food at its best! Feel free to adjust the amount of cheese according to your preferences; anywhere around 40-50g should be fine!

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Recipe (Serves 2)

Adapted From Antonio Carluccio

2eggs

50g Parmesan Cheese, finely grated

Pancetta/Bacon/Guanciale, roughly chopped

Pasta; serving for two

Pepper (optional)

 

1. Bring the water to a boil and add the pasta to salted boiling water. It’s always said that you should ‘add a pinch of salt’ to the water which is….around almost a teaspoon!

2. Grate Parmesan cheese and add in the eggs! Beat and combine.

3. Chop and fry the bacon. Bacon is gold. The more the merrier.

3. Cook the pasta till al dente and add it to the bacon! Remove the bacon from the heat, especially if it’s too hot. Mix well here to ensure all the goodness from the bacon gets onto the pasta.

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4. Add in the egg and cheese mixture and stir to coat the pasta. Add pepper here if you’d like to! The residual heat will cook the egg mixture sufficiently and ensure that your pasta gets coated!

5. Add finishing touches. Like more Parmesan Cheese. And I like adding pepper flakes as well🙂

 

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Dig in!

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How to get good-lookin’ pancakes

Pancakes and maple syrup; perfect for a lovely Sunday brunch for the family. It takes a little more effort (at least to me) to create them and a little technique to get the beautiful even color that MacDonald has. But so worth the additional effort! I’ve to admit, MacDonalds has really beautiful pancakes that are of an even color. If not for the slightly chewy texture and rubbery feeling after it has been left in the cold (goodness knows what they put inside), I might just start eating Macs again. (I’m lying. I do actually. Occasionally. Shhh)

Of course, pancakes are not the healthiest! For a healthier alternative, blend 2 eggs with one banana to create a stack of naturally sweetened and gluten free pancakes. But close enough.

I’ve always had a problem obtaining a nice and even color on pancakes cos somehow I just don’t have the right non-stick pan. So for people like me who also don’t have the right non-stick pan and don’t wanna buy it just to make these, here are some things I found out while making this:

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1) Lightly grease the pan

Melt butter in the pan and use a paper towel to absorb any excess oil. This is important to give your pancakes an even color! The excess oil/butter will end up frying your pancakes, especially when the heat increases.

 

2) Ensure an even distribution of heat

Turn up to a medium low heat and wait for the pan to have an even distribution of heat. Patience, here, is a virtue indeed. Cranking up the heat from the start causes the pan to overheat and causes it to brown too much and cook unevenly.

 

3) Mix thoroughly to get a smooth and even batter.

 

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It might be clumpy at first but just keep going…

 

4) Use a ladle

Pour the batter down slowly with the ladle and use the back of the ladle to form an even circle.

 

5) Wait till bubbles are formed

The sides of the pancake will solidify and bubbles will start to appear on the pancake when it’s done! Flip the pancake here to cook it evenly. Patience is a virtue; don’t be too excited (like me half of the time) and start flipping the pancake when it’s half done.

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6) Decorate with fruits

Go crazy with the combination!

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7) Take Pictures.

Lots of them. And be happy that you put in the extra effort to treat yourself and your family.

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8) MAPLE SYRUP

What? Maple syrup. That is all.

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9) Dig In

My favourite part

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Anyhoo, I think this is going to be fun; Yufan (the person behind the gorgeous pictures) and I will be aiming to bake/cook something every week and have fun taking pictures, eating and talking nonsense in the meantime. Bonding time or what?  Check out her Instagram at @tyufan!

First

Hi there!

I think I’ve always wanted to create a blog but I’ve always been a) too lazy b) without direction.

One thing I have always been passionate about is baking; I love how it seems to be so magical. Together with cooking, I become a student in every way. From properties of food to baking and cooking techniques, I learn new things every day and it’s also refreshing how the world seems to stop every time I bake; it’s therapy at its finest. I stop my overworked brain and learn new things. It’s amazing how no matter how hectic my life is, just like exercising, baking seems to calm me down and make me….happy.

On top of that, sometime this year, I’ve been privileged to have gained more experience and also tried a whole lot of food (*cough* cafe hop *cough) I’d like to have a journal to keep all the things I learn and thoughts/opinions I have; from baked products and food such as French Toast to interesting techniques and recipes that I come across. Because quite frankly…I don’t like to spend my calories on food where taste/quality has been compromised and sharing knowledge will be interesting!

Oh yeah, on top of that, I’d be more than happy to bake for you and share my love for cakes; feel free to drop me an email and pardon me as I’m still working on the gallery for the bakes!

Kexin