Friday, October 31, 2014

Sweet Findings

Hey!

It's Friday again and Happy Halloween! :)

What are you up to? Got your scary on for today!? 

I have a long list of scary things to do! And my scary thought is that I am afraid that I don't have enough time to finish them! 

So time is running out, let's hop on over to this week's Sweet Findings! 


1 - Do cold eggs really make a difference in baking? (thekitchn.com) has the answer! 

2 - Love spending time in the supermarket, making you spend more than you need? Here's a simple formula on how to make sure that doesn't happen! (theeverygirl.com)

3 - How easy is this Marshmallow frosting for your cupcakes!  (designcrushblog.com)

4 - How to fix over-whipped cream? (marthastewart.com) video will help!

5 - Passionatemae turns 5! Thank you! Blogiversary post here! (passionatemae.com)


Passionatemae turns 5!


Passionatemae turns 5! Seriously, time really flies. But truth be told, even though I've had my blog for 5 years, I've not had the chance to fully dedicate myself to my blog. Life always gets in the way. And if it really wasn't for your continuous support, Passionatemae wouldn't have survived this long. Because of the support that I get from all of you, it has kept me motivated to continue to share my journey on baking and open up about my other passions related to food. 

I am so very thankful to be celebrating the 5th Anniversary of my blog!

Here are my favourite highlights turning a year older. 

Met these ladies at the Cake, Bake and Sweets show! You can also check out my review .

An afternoon with Heston for the "Heston for Coles" VIP launch!

These melt in your mouth Sea Salted Caramel with a shot of Rum (recipe)! Yum! Personally not a fan of caramels, but these..yum! 

 Torta Alla Gianduia (Nutella cake), I made for my husband's birthday! Check out the video below! 

video

In June, I started a new series called "Sweet Findings" featured every Fridays! Check out this week's entry!


I have also branched out into other things other than just baking (recipes). Also, am very grateful to hear from my readers and I took some time to answer questions from my dear readers here (Part 1) & (Part 2).

My posts are growing more in the "Did you know?" section of my blog! 
Latest addition to the family. Kitchen Essentials Part 5 : How long can you store your Ingredients? (Part 1| Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4) . More topics in this section.

I believe that I have finally found my style of writing. It took me a long time. The kind of tone, style to communicate with you. But I believe I have found it! I am glad! :) *grins*

 This is soooo not food-related, but from time to time, I talk about our adorable four-legged baby beagle, Cooper

Thanks again for believing in me. I'm happy to say that I've achieved more things these couples of months when I started investing more of my time to my blog than before. And I will continue to do more from now on! 

xo,
Mae

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Kitchen Essentials Part 5 :  How long can you store your ingredients?

Ever wonder where to store baking ingredients and what is the shelf life on them? Don't worry, I'm here to help. It is important to store ingredients properly to ensure the freshness of it. The worst thing is to use stale ingredients or ingredients that are not as fresh as it should be.

You can use jars, air-tight containers, sealable bags to store your ingredients. Don't forget to write the purchase or expiry date of the ingredients so that you're able to keep track.

It is also good to know which ingredients you use on a regular basis and which you don't. That way, it can help give you an idea on where you should store them. 

I have here a short list of examples on what, where and how long you can keep the ingredients.



I hope that this list will help give you some guidance on what you should and can do.

At the end of the day, just taste or smell the ingredients, if something doesn't smell alright, it's time to replace it. Also, from my experience usually ingredients that are kept properly especially when kept in the freezer or the fridge, lasts longer than the expiry date. But hey, at the end of the day, use your senses to lead you! 

Happy organising! :)

Friday, October 24, 2014

Sweet Findings

Hey!

This week has been crazy for me.

I've been so very busy keeping my oven and Kitchen Aid mixer going. Loads of recipe testings in the kitchen. I can't wait to share it with you all when it's ready!

Here are my 6 sweet findings for the week!


1 - These Halloween Cupcake toppers are the cutest! Learn how to make them. (domainehome.com)

2 - I can't wait for my Homemade Decadence cookbook by Joy Wilson a.k.a JoytheBaker to arrive! (joythebaker.com)

3 - Halloween Candy Bar? Learn how to create one from Cupcakes and Cashmere. (cupcakesandcashmere.com)

4 - Feeling adventurous? Make your own Sriracha Chilli Halloween costume. (thekitchn.com)

5 - No-Churn Condensed Milk and Jam Ice-cream...YUM! (cookrepublic.com)

6 - OMG, give me some! Hazelnut and Bittersweet Chocolate Chunk Cookies! (preserve.us)

It's going to be one very busy weekend! I hope you'll have a relaxing one! :)

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Questions from Dear Readers: Part 2


Last week, I opened an invitation to all to "Ask Away" about anything and everything you would like to know about me. Thank you for sending in your questions. I had a great time reading all of your questions. So, here we go! Your questions answered! 

1 - What I was holding in my hand from my Ask Away picture? 
Nutella filled Donuts from The Grounds in Alexandria. 

2 - I read about your post on "My Next Chapter", and I am so happy for you. I would like to know whether you've come up with what you will be selling?
Thank you, I'm so excited too. I've been so busy in the kitchen, with recipe testings. I do have a couple of items ready. I will definitely update my progress in another post as we go.

3 - How old are you?
I'm in my late 20s...very close to 30. Okay..okay...I turned 28 in August. 

4 - Why did you decide to go and study Patisserie?
Hmm..that's a good question, I wanted to learn and understand the techniques and science behind why we do things a certain way in baking. You can read more here.

5 - Why do you like baking? 
It has a calming effect on me. Baking is fun...it feels like I'm accomplishing something!

6 - In your previous post, you've mentioned that you would love to branch out of baking, and I recall that you've mentioned about fashion and home decor. What's your kind of style?
Yes, I certainly did, I would definitely say that when it comes to fashion the clothes I wear is usually bright and bold in colour and a hint of girliness...and comfortable! As for home decor, I would say Modern Classic. Definitely would ensure there are splashes of colours around the house.

7 - What are you most afraid of?
At the top of my head, it would be creepy crawlies..eww..

8 - Why do you like eggs so much?
Because it taste awesome! And the texture is unique...andddd it goes well with everything..at least that's what I think!

9 - What kind of food do you like to eat? What sort of cuisine?
I like spicy food..so anything with chilli is a good start for me. Malaysian is my favourite cuisine, especially Nasi Lemak with Sambal Sotong and Chicken Rendang! YUM!! 

10 - What languages do you speak?
I speak English, Malay, and some Hokkien & Cantonese. 

Thanks again for your support! Have a good week! :)

xo Mae

Monday, October 20, 2014

Morning Blast with Nutribullet!

Morning!

What do you eat first thing in the morning for breakfast?

Cereals? Smoothie? Coffee? Croissants? Muffins, Sandwiches? Fruits? A tub of ice-cream maybe?! :)

As for me, I always start my day with a glass of water first before I do anything else!

Then, I will make myself a drink with my Nutribullet!

Nutribullet is pretty awesome! It is easy to use and clean. It breaks down all the fibres into liquid so that you get the full nutrition from it. You don't have to remove the seeds or peel your fruits too. You can only buy it through the phone for now, look out for the infomercial on TV if you're interested. It cost around $300 or so for it. But it is really worth it! 

Anyway, this is what I usually make for myself. I love bananas, so I will usually have that in my drink. I also always put Chia seeds, Spirulina powder, and sometimes Acai powder (all superfood).

These are the few varieties that I have made throughout the week. Of course it depends what fruits I have and what's in season too! The combinations are endless! You can put vegetables too like Spinach, Celeries. Not forgetting, you can add oats or nuts to the drink too.


1 - Bananas, Apples, Strawberries, Soymilk, Chia Seeds, Acai and Spirulina.
2 - Bananas, Carrots, Apples, Soymilk, Chia seeds, Acai and Spirulina.  
3 - Rockmelons, Pineapples, Mint, Chia seeds, Pure Coconut water, Chia seeds.
4 - Bananas, Strawberries, Oranges, Mint, Chia Seeds, Spirulina and Soymilk.
5 - Bananas, Strawberries, Mint, Soymilk, Spirulina, and Chiaseeds.
6 - Bananas, Papayas, Orange, Soymilk, Chiaseeds and Spirulina.

Happy Tummy = Happy Life! :)



Friday, October 17, 2014

Sweet Findings

Hey!

How have you been? I've been so busy in the kitchen with recipe testings! Have you been baking much this week? A few days back, I talked about being grateful for all your support and have opened up an invitation for you to ASK AWAY! I will be answering all your questions next Wednesday!

So here is this week's Sweet Findings! Check them out!


1 - Why you should grate the butter the next time you bake? (thekitchn.com)

2 - Cute! Make your own Halloween mini marshmallows! (familyfreshmeals.com)

3 - Find out what are the Best New Cookbooks to order now! (domainehome.com)

4 - Interesting, how colours can influence your shopping choices! (thekitchn.com)


6 - 12 desserts served on a spoon, simple. (huffingtonpost.com)

Happy weekend! :)


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Ask Away!

Hi!


I'm always flattered when people ask me questions via my blog, social media or email. I thought this would be a nice way to show my appreciation by opening up an invitation for you to ask me about anything you would like to know about me! Whether it is about Passionatemae, what's my favourite ice-cream flavour, pet peeves or what's my all time favourite movie. I'd love to hear your questions. Just ask as many as you wish either in the comments section in my blog or email me (passionatemae@gmail.com) and I will answer them all in next week's post!  

Can't wait to hear from you!

Happy Hump Day! :)

Friday, October 10, 2014

Sweet Findings

Hey!

Happy Friday! 

We did so much over the long weekend this week. The weather was fantastic! The sun was out, such good days to be out! 

Here is this week's sweet findings...


1 - It's getting hot, cool down with this Coconut Milk Sorbet (everydaygourmet.tv)

2 - Try this Easy & Refreshing Watermelon pops! (examiner.com)

3 - Quench those thirst with these decadent cocktails (prestonbailey.com)

4 - The Strawberry Basil Sangria certainly looks so refreshing (mothernaturenetwork.com)

5 - Take advantage of the hot weather to make this Cinnamon Sugar with Browned Butter Pulled Apart Bread! (passionatemae.com)

6 - YUM YUM YUM! French Toast Fingers. (cupcakesandcashmere.com)

Have a lovely weekend! :)

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Delicious Banana Cake

I love bananas...but I don't really eat them on its own. But I do love bananas in my milkshake smoothie, cake, on my waffles and pancakes. 

This is my go-to recipe when I am making banana cake. The most important thing in the recipe is to make sure that your bananas are SUPER DUPER ripe! It means the skin of the bananas are BLACK in colour. The bananas in the image below are for photography purposes only.

This recipe was adapted from Martha Stewart's recipe.

All you need:
3 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
3/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp vanilla essence
1 1/3 cups canola oil
1/2 cup buttermilk (I used full cream milk)
3 really ripe bananas(medium) - mashed
3 eggs
1 tsp baking soda

All you need to do:
1) Pre-heat oven to 175degrees. Line baking tin with parchment paper.
2) Whisk flour, salt and baking soda in a bowl, set aside.
3) Beat eggs, oil and sugar on medium speed till combine.
4) Add flour mixture and mix till just combine.
5) Add in milk, vanilla essence and mashed bananas till just combine. 
6) Pour into tin. 
7) Bake for 60-65 mins or until the cake tester comes out clean.
8) Leave on rack to cool for 10 mins, then transfer it out from the tin and cool completely.

Enjoy! :)

Monday, October 6, 2014

Rainbow Tarts Cookbook Giveaway Winner!


Thank you to all for sending through your entries! 

Congratulations to 

Alicee!!

I hope you'll wow your guests at your son's 1st birthday! :)

Please send me an email : passionatemae@gmail.com ! :) to confirm your postal details.

Thanks again to Olivia from Hardie Grant Books for sponsoring this giveaway.

To those who did not win this time, continue to keep an eye as there are always more giveaways in the future.

Hope you had a good Labour day holiday! :)

Friday, October 3, 2014

Sweet Findings

Hey!

Spring is here! 

This week is all about Chocolate chips! Raise of hands who loves Chocolate chip?

I have gathered a short list of sweet findings with Chocolate chips this week!


1 - Seriously, let's do this! Chocolate Chip & Toffee Shortbread Cookies. (thekitchn.com)

2 - More chocolate chips! 23 life-changing ways to eat Chocolate Chip cookies. (buzzfeed.com)

3 - Have some Chocolate Mud cupcakes topped with chocolate chips. (passionatemae.com)

4 - How about some Mint Chocolate Chip Ice cream to keep cool during the hotter days in Spring? (davidlebovitz.com)

5 - This Cookie dough Swirl Marshmallow recipe is so easy to make, I've made them several times, and it's simply delicious! (loveandoliveoil.com) They have a book called "The Cookie Dough Lover's Cookbook" - a must buy! 

6 - Quick, make a batch of Totally Chocolate Chocolate Chip cookies! Stash some frozen cookie dough in the freezer for emergency cravings! (passionatemae.com)

Happy FriYAY! :)

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Let's talk about cookbooks!


So, I love cookbooks....who doesn't? Especially the sweet ones. 

There are a few things I look for when I am buying a cookbook. 

1 - Pictures
There must be pictures...loads of them! It can be pictures showing the steps in the recipe or it could be a picture of the finished product. Whichever it is, there must be pictures! The best is to have a picture for every single recipe, if not at least most of recipes in the book. I am definitely a sucker for choosing a recipe when I like how the picture of it looks like. As the saying goes "we eat with our eyes first".

2 - Dual Measurements
Wondering what this is? For example, sometimes the recipe calls for 1/2 cup of oil, instead of measuring it up in a cup, I use the weighing method. That way I can simply mix the oil with the other ingredients (usually sugar) into the bowl I am going to use. That way, I save myself from washing an extra baking utensil. I know I'm lazy like that. Besides, I believe that some say that measuring out ingredients in weight, is more accurate than the cup method.

3 - Tips and Hints
Who doesn't like tips? It really helps, trust me. For example, simple things like how long can this cake be stored for? Does it need to be refrigerated? Can this cookie dough be frozen? And if so, how long? These sort of tips does help, at least for me. Apart from that, for example, I never really measure the amount when I'm making icing for my cupcakes...I just add more butter or icing sugar depending on how thick or runny I would need it to be. 

4 - Summary/Index
This definitely makes it easier to find a recipe. Whether it is based on the type of ingredient used like Chocolate? or it can be based on the textures for cookies (crunchy, crispy, chewy, soft). There are also cookbooks which indexes their recipes according to the difficulty level of a recipe. All these indexing style surely makes it easier to find a specific recipe. 

5 - Stockists
It is always good to know where to buy certain specialty ingredients or utensils. Though sometimes, it can be irrelevant, when a recipe uses a specialty ingredient that is used commercially, but home bakers are not able to get their hands on them. Whatever it is, it is still good to know where to get the supplies!

What do you look for when you're buying a cookbook? Or do you just buy a cookbook because it is just so darn pretty! 

Happy Hump Day! :)