Friday, December 19, 2014

Sweet Findings

Hey!

It has been a good week for me. Something exciting is happening in the new year. 

My parents are in town for the seasonal holidays this year. It has been a while since we celebrated Christmas together.

Let's see what we have in store in this week's Sweet Findings!


1 - A great idea! Making your very own cupcake sprinkles at home! (thekitchn.com)

2 - This is pretty awesome :Magical cocktails. (huffingtonpost.com)

3 - I want some Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice-cream. (eatthelove.com)

4 - The Juicy Watermelon Cake is such a great idea to have this summer! (passionatemae.com)

5 - Baking is therapeutic, experts says so too! (gawker.com)

6 - Such a cute idea : Hot Cocoa Bar - unique! (sugarandcharm.com)

Happy Friday! :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Brown Sugar Milk Cookie Dough Popsicles

These popsicles are really super easy to make. You only need a few ingredients!

It doesn't take more than 10 minutes to make these popsicles, once that's done, just freeze them in the freezer for at least 3 hours before you can enjoy!

This recipe is from the "Cookie Dough Lover's Cookbook". The other recipe that I've made from this cookbook is the Marshmallow Cookie Dough Swirl

Let's get going!

All you need:
(makes 6 popsicles)
1 1/4 cups milk
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp mini chocolate chips



All you need to do:
1 - Heat up milk in a saucepan, do not boil it, just until warm to touch, add in brown sugar and salt, stir until all has dissolved.

2 - Fill chocolate chips in the moulds before filling it up with milk.

3 - Fill milk mixture in the moulds up to almost to the brim. 


4 - Insert popsicle sticks and place them in freezer. Freeze for at least 3 hours until solid. 


5 - To release the popsicles from mould, run it under warm water for a few seconds and slowly pull out popsicles from moulds.


Happy Hump Day! :)


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Marshmallow Cookie Dough Swirls

Did you know that making marshmallows at home is not as hard as you think?

It just requires some basic understanding of making candy.

You need to make sure you boil the sugar at the right temperature. To do that, you would need a good candy thermometer. I prefer to use the digital one, but I lost it, so I'm using the old school one.

Come...let's make some Marshmallow Cookie Dough Swirls!


This recipe is adapted from The Cookie Dough Lover's Cookbook.

All you need:
For Cookie Dough
1/3 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tbsp caster sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 tbsp milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1/3 cup plain flour

For Marshmallows
4 3/4 tsp gelatine powder
1 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup corn syrup
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup chocolate chips (milk or dark)

All you need to do:
1 - Line your square baking pan properly with baking spray and then line with baking paper. Dust pan lightly with icing sugar.


2 - Cookie Dough: Combine butter and sugars in a mixing bowl. Beat until light and fluffy with a wooden spoon. 


Add milk, vanilla and salt, mix well. 


Add flour and mix until just incorporated.


3 - Marshmallows: Sprinkle gelatine powder in a stand mixer bowl, let it soften for at least 5 minutes.

4 - Combine sugars, corn syrup and salt in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring until sugars dissolves. When mixture begins to boil, stop stirring. Cover and boil for about 2 minutes. Uncover and continue to boil, without stirring, until mixture reaches 238°F, about 7-8 minutes more. Remove from heat. 
*do not take your eye off the sugar and thermometer!


5 - Place bowl with gelatine mixture and start stand mixer with a whisk attachment on low speed. Slowly add hot sugar mixture into gelatine, pour down the side of the bowl to prevent splattering. Increase mixer speed to medium high, whip until mixture is thick, shiny and lukewarm, about 13-15 minutes. Beat in vanilla.


6 - Drop dollops of of cookie dough into marshmallow mixture and fold until dough is swirled throughout. 


7 - Pour marshmallow into the prepared pan, smoothing the top. You can use your hands, just wet it and smooth the top. Lightly dust top with icing sugar and sprinkle with chocolate chips. Let it sit, uncovered, for 3.5 - 4 hours or until set.


8 - Once set, cut the marshmallows using a knife or pizza cutter that has been lightly buttered with icing sugar. Serve immediately. Marshmallows can be kept for up to 1 week in an air-tight container.


Happy Marshy! :)

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

A Dining Experience at Daniel San, Manly

Have you heard of Daniel San? It's in Manly, opened on the 4th October 2014, right next to Novotel Hotel. It's a Japanese rock 'n' roll bar! This place pays homage to the movie "The Karate Kid".  The place is actually pretty cool, there are different sections where you can book out a place for special events and functions.


Last month, my husband and I were invited to dine here. The moment this was booked in, we were so very excited to check the place out. The menu definitely looked good, we wanted to try so many dishes. Trust me we did, we ate so much, you'll find out below! Luckily there were a couple of items that were sold out..otherwise we would have ordered them too!


As you walk in, you will notice plenty of Karate trophies displayed on the wall. 

Before I continue, I would like to say that I am not obligated to write a review about them, but I thought I should share this because good things are meant to be shared, right??


Behind the bar, there's the famous "Wax On, Wax Off" line in.

So when we got there, the place was PACKED! Music was playing and people chattering about. This place was really nice..it has been a while since we gone up to Manly, so this was well worth our trip.

pic: Stellar* Concepts

When we arrived, we were greeted and seated where we could see everything that was going on. There were people dancing after their meals just at their tables. Daniel San has managed to create an ambience where people felt very comfortable. We also noticed that the crowd were more towards in their 30s. After all, the price at Daniel San wasn't cheap.

pic: Stellar* Concepts

So, we were taken care by Sukh. He explained to us what was not to be missed and what are the popular dishes. He took our orders and said to call him if we needed anything. 

pic: Stellar* Concepts

We started the night off with cocktails. OMG, when you go there, please make sure you order the cocktails. My husband and I felt that the cocktails were so smooth, it had just the right balance. If you must know, I don't really drink that much, but I really liked the cocktails because it was smooth and very easy to drink.

pic: Stellar* Concepts

We had the Tommi San, Okinawan Shandy and the Chu Hai. 


Tommi San - Don Julio Blanco, beer agave, lime juice and wasabi salt. I couldn't taste much of the wasabi in the salt.  $19

Okinawan Shandy - A Daniel San twist on Mojito: Pampero Especial, stones ginger wine, apple crush cider, lime and mint. $16

Chu Hai - Tanqueray, aloe vera, peach bitters and shiso.  $12


The food were served pretty quick too...we ordered the dishes below. Let's take a look, shall we?

First dish was the Scallop Sashimi...YUM! The scallops melted in our mouths. And the flavour, OMG, tangy, salty and those sweet scallops! $16



The Chicken Karaage was the second dish served. The batter was really crisp and light. And that juicy meat! But wait, the wasabi mayo was the BOMB! There's enough kick to the sauce. Usually Wasabi Mayo tastes pretty mild, but this one, you can taste the wasabi and it goes very well with the Chicken Karaage. $14.50


There are so many steamed buns around these days...but this is REALLY REALLY REALLY good! The Porkie Steamed Buns was the highlight dish for my husband and I. The buns were fluffy and light.  The pork belly wasn't too fatty (I don't usually like pork belly for that reason), but I LOVED this one! There's juiciness from the pork belly, crunchiness from the cashews and that honey glaze to complement, OMG!! I'm salivating thinking back! $15


So on to our 4th dish, the Gluten Free Salad. This dish was ok, but not our favourite, we felt that the soba noodles were a little over-cooked. Flavour wise, did not quite match up to the other dishes that we had. $19


The Prawn Yuzu Kosho Skewers, my my my..the prawns were so fresh! There's a nice char-grilled flavour...enjoyed this! $10.50



Our 6th dish was the Miso Marinated Tofu...we don't usually order tofu when we go out to eat, but we were glad that we did. This dish definitely surprised us. The tofu held together nicely, the flavour was yum! I know it is just tofu, but it was a good tofu dish! $14



Yakitori Thigh Chicken Skewers! The meat was juicy and yummy! This is definitely better than a lot of Yakitori that I've eaten before. And I am a big fan of Yakitori Chicken. And Daniel San uses chicken thigh rather than breast! $9.50



Our final savoury dish was the Grilled 220g Angus Steak. We requested for medium rare, but when we got our dish, it was medium. The meat was a little dry, unfortunately, probably due to the fact that they were really busy that night. Apart from that, the flavour was not too bad. $26


Now now, dessert! So Daniel San serves 4 different types of dessert on their menu, we couldn't decide what to have, so we ordered the Deluxe Dessert Boat, that includes all 4 desserts. Trust me, it was a lot to eat. This is a good one to share with a few people. You can definitely order the desserts separately though, you don't have to order the Deluxe Boat. $45


Housemade Soft Serve - It was green tea flavour. I love green tea ice-cream. This was made with Ponto Cho Green Tea and soy milk. The soft serve was smooth, and the green tea flavour was quite pronounced, just the way I like it. My husband isn't usually a fan of green tea flavoured ice cream, but he thought it was pretty good. Price for individual serve $6



 This dessert was recommended if we wanted to try something unique and different. It's called the Milk & White Chocolate Tofu with Coco Nibs. It was interesting, the texture was really smooth and the coco nibs had a deep chocolate flavour to it. My husband could finish this dessert himself. Price for individual serve $14



Okay, so this Strawberry & Cream Cheesecake was not too bad. I am a big fan of cheesecakes if you don't know. This dessert was good. Price for individual serve $14



FINALLY! Our last dish! The Yuzu Marshmallow Bomb. People, if you are a big big fan of TART (sour) desserts, you need to order this. This will make the side of your cheeks so tingly. It reminds me of a Bombe Alaska dessert but still different. You know when I first tasted this, I told my husband, this isn't sour at all like what Sukh said (the guy that was taking care of us), then my husband was like, try it again, you did not take the sour part, so I dug in, and OMG, my CHEEKS! haha...Sukh was definitely right, it was really TART! Price for individual serve $14



So in total, we had 12 dishes between the two of us. We definitely got to taste a variety of items from the menu, which was great! We would definitely try their Chips & Dips and Crispy Fried Squid the next time.

So anyway, thanks to James from Stellar* Concepts for organising this lovely night out for us. We really enjoyed ourselves! The food, ambience, music was great! We were well taken care of. Thanks Daniel San for having us! We will be returning soon! VERY SOON! :)

Passionatemae and husband were invited as guests to dine at Daniel San. 


55 North Steyne, Manly NSW Australia 2095
02 9977 6963

Happy Tuesday! :)