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Turkish pide /Tanzhong style

This remains one of my favourite breads to eat…like a few dozen other, but truly a nice pide/ or its relative the barbary naan bread are sooo good with a stew or a grilled chicken kebab , to mop up some curry, or even simply like in a panini s/w.

will update more when im riding the train today in Sydney…

And what can be more fun than juggling a cup of latte ,praise the Lord for cups with lids.

So we first need to the make this sticky paste which is called tangzhong in china and shokupan in Japan where you cook some starch with a liquid and then use that as a base for your bread .this allows for the bread to absorb more water , which allows for the bread to stay cottonsoft for a lot longer without any other additives .

So for that first I took

Milk 300 ml and cooked it with 30 g of flour and butter to make a kind of a bechamel or white sauce. Keep 1 spoon separately.Cool that down till you can touch it with your fingers and add about 100 ml water .( Very important that it’s not too hot or you going to kill them yeastie babies

Then to that you add 6 g of yeast, and 10 g sugar and 10 g salt mix lightly and add flour 400 g( I used 50 g spelt, 200 whole wheat and 150 regular. I then just lightly mixed it up .

Then I proofed it in the fridge with some plastic wrap so it doesn’t get dry.

Then you knock it back , gently and divide into 4.round it up and leave it for a few minutes.

Then you sort of elongate the dough and make it into a rectangle shape . Dimple the top and proof again.

Test the side by touching the side.if it springs back immediately it’s not ready to bake just yet.

Prrheat your oven to 200 C and brush your bread dough with diluted bechamel+ 30ml of olive oil which you have saved in the first step…didn’t save it..Curses ..

Then top it with sesame seeds ,Nigella and I used some fennel too with some cracked salt.

Bake for approximately 14-16 minutes turning midway through the cooking process .brush with olive oil when done and serve..

Pumpkin Pie!!

This is a very american Thanksgiving dessert, and sometimes not that popular with the rest .Partly i giess due the texture and the colour.But properly made it can be very satisfying and nice, alomst with a cheesecake type consistency.

so for this we need

  1. Flour 120 g
  2. butter-60 g
  3. sugar – 30 g
  4. Egg – 1/2

This wil give you enough pastry to make one pie and have a bit to spare.Crumble the butter sugar and flour with your fingertips .Add the egg and knead very lightly to form the dough. /line your pie tin with the pastry evenly and rest for atleast 15-30 minutes before par baking .Par bake at 170 C for 15 minutes.

For the filling we will use.

  1. Pumkin puree – 250 g
  2. eggs -1.5+ use up the half leftover from the pastry.- no waste
  3. brown sugar-150 g
  4. cinnamon- pinch
  5. dry ground ginger – large pinch
  6. allspice- pinch
  7. melted butter- 20g
  8. evaporated milk -240 ml

to make the filling whisk eggs with sugar and then add the rest of the ingredients.use a stick blender to blend all of it smooth.

Pour it into your par baked pie crust and cook for 10 mins at 1170 c, and then lower temperature to 130 C for a further 30-35 minutes.the filling should be barely set.

allow to cool down and then refrigerate and serve.

Wonton/ Hun tun

Will write about one of my fav appetizers here coming soon as soon as I finish walking many kms.

I learnt how to make these not in some random little tea shop in Canton like some of them famous people claim.

Nah that’s not for me I instead had to make these as per order(8 ) for every portion and sometimes for banquets at the Krishna Oberoi a luxury hotel in Hyderabad. For banqueting they were ordered in dozens so the chef would tell out to me.” Hey bamboklat in the break just make 125 dozen wontons”. What the *#”@’:&_&–..

So I had to get pretty fast at it or would get no break at all….This was when I was a trainee from the Oberoi school of hotel management..and we were treated like the lowest of the low by all. The staff hated us cos at some point of time we would become their bosses / supervisors and the supervisors would think yeah right , let’s see if this young fella can take as much torture as I think he can…no how about 24 hr shifts..yeah just have a nap on the oil drum in the dry store .

Ok before we go far far away in the tales of the enchanted forest..lets go back to these delectable morsels.

You will need to find a good source of wonton/ hun tun wrappers somewhere in your town.too hard to make from scratch and they are reasonably cheap to buy ready made .1.9$ at local supermarket in Sydney and can be used also to make teeny tiny spring rolls ( also make a 85 dozens of those Yash) and Shu Mai/ sui Mai .

For the filling we need

  • Chicken mince – 250 ( can use a mix of chicken and prawns )
  • Chinese rice wine ( Hua Tia chiew)-5 ml
  • Chicken stock powder/ Ji Jin – pinch
  • Light soy sauce- 2 ml or so
  • Celery chopped fine- 5 g
  • Coriander stems -2 g
  • Cracked pepper- pinch
  • Sesame oil – 2 ml
  • For the outer we will use store bought wrappers ..we’ve already said why before in the rambling stuff written above.
  • so you fold the wrapper in half and then twist it amd stick them behind each other to form that funky shape.(hmm you probably are going to need a video or so to get it right).
  • but once i do that you can poach or fry these beauties and sing happy songs!!

Shokupan/ aka Hokkaido milk bun

There is a kind of pull apart bread we eat in Mumbai / Bombay called pav .this recipe doesn’t taste anything like that.

What the$#@&-++, you must be thinking , why bother mentioning it then . because the Hokkaido milk bun hmb for short looks like pav ladi we get in India but tastes far better and is akin to a pav wearing foundation and make up sitting in a fancy car.

So the way to make it is also diffferent slightly more complex. We take a small amount of flour and milk and cook it to a paste. What this does is allow the rest of the dough when finished to get more soft and fluffy.( Because of complex chemical reactions..,you dont want to know all the details.

  • Flour 450+50 g
  • Milk 225+100 ml
  • Sugar 10 g
  • Salt-10 g
  • Yeast active dry-10 g

so now once we have weighed our stuff ,we measure out flour and take 50 g separate and cook it with 100 ml milk till it gets to be like a gel and gluey. This is called Yudane in Japan and tangzhong in china.we are not going to sit and examine which one came first or why they even work. Suffice it to say that they do.

Then you add the rest of the liquid ( milk ) in this case to the gluey mix and whisk it up .cool it till gets blood warm then add the sugar salt flour and yeast in that order.dont change the order otherwise you could kill the yeast.Also don’t put in yeast in hot dough which also is the way of the seppuku( honorable suicide ), because yeast will die above 50 odd degree and you will be left with a stone to pelt at your enemies .Bam blam..whiz..

Add 20 g of butter and 20 ml oil to dough and knead it in

Ok so we have arrived at that happy moment where the dough has been amalgamated and yeast is ready to multiply and make CO2 to make holes and allow your dough to rise. For this at home what I do is heat up water in the microwave and keep the dough next to it .( In a bowl).

Then preheat your oven to 190 deg C…the USA guys have to do a google search to find out what temp they need to achieve. Ok sorry it’s about 425 F.

Then the big piece of dough you knock back or de gas and divide into 20 pieces ..

Shape them into round balls and elongate them slightly.

Put back in the microwave with water till they get nicely proofed.

Then brush with milk and melted butter butter and bake for approximately 15-18 mins

Rich Fruit cake- boiled syrup style

makes one medium sized cake about 8 inch round cooking time about 45-50 mins , preparation around 15 , depends on how organised you are

  • Flour-90
  • Almond powder 10 g( I’ve said 10 but you could higher and reduce the flour a bit )
  • cornflour-10 g
  • cinnamon powder- 2g
  • dry ground ginger- 2 g
  • Allspice- 1 g
  • Nutmeg- pinch
  • Baking soda- 4 g
  • salt- 1 g
  • mixed nuts- 125 g(Almond, walnuts, cashews)

Ive separated the dry from the wet ingredients. so as to create a demarcation.

  • water-90 ml
  • mixed dry fruit(raisins, dates, apricots, dont buy a ready mix)-200 g
  • brown/ raw sugar- 110 g
  • oil- 45 g( yes by weight)
  • butter -45 g
  • eggs -2
  • vanilla extract- a little
  • brandy or dark rum- 45 ml+ a bit more to brush on or baste after baking
  • Ok now to begin the process.First preheat oven to 170 Cand prepare your cake tin( this you always do first, REMEMBER THIS)
  • Heat the water with the oil, butter and fruits. Take off the heat and add brandy and vanilla. ( you can also put grated orage zest if you like.
  • Add the eggs , mix well and fold in the dry ingredients, and combine well.
  • Pour into your prepared tin and tap on the bech to make it even.
  • bake for about 45-50 mins till it is cooked but not dry.
  • when it comes out of the oven , hold in the tin for a few mins then demld and brush with some more alcohol.(its worth it, Truly.)