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No fuss pineapple jam recipe

So some of my readers probably know that my family and I have embarked on a permanent lifestyle change.

Other than the social media detox and etc that I mentioned earlier, we have also  removed grains, refined sugar and dairy from our diet. If you want to learn more about our diet (it’s called WildFit) check out my husband’s posts.

That means no rice, no wheat, no milk, no cheese, no candy bars, no a lot of many things.

It isn’t easy and we still find ourselves succumbing to these evil, delicious inflammatory food such as cheeses, cookies, crisps, ramen (happened today in fact urgh), briyani and laksa every now and then but we take solace in that our main everyday meals are 99% of the time – sugar, grain and dairy free. We also drink 2 x 400ml glasses of vegetable green smoothies (minimum 5 types of veges + chia seeds + virgin coconut oil) daily to stock up on micronutrients.

Anyway, Chinese New Year is fast approaching and of course, I had gotten a bit sad that I can’t bake and indulge on my signature chocolate chip cookies and pineapple tarts. Out of desperation, I decided to google for AIP friendly pineapple tart recipes.

AIP you ask? What’s that?

AIP stands for “auto-immune protocol” and it’s a special diet for people with autoimmune issues to get their immune system and gut back to health. Although we don’t have issues with our immune systems, I personally believe the AIP diet is possibly one of the healthiest diets out there. Needless to say, it also fits my no refined-sugar, no grain & no dairy rule.

I stumbled across this recipe and was really intrigued by its pineapple jam recipe. It uses oven with minimal stirring…..well, that sounds amazing!

Ain’t nobody got time standing over the stove stirring jam.

So I tried the recipe out. I used only two ingredients although the original recipe called for date paste (for extra sweetness) and a couple more spices but I don’t think it needs them. Anyway, it’s your call.

Ingredients:

2 ripe large pineapples

1 tablespoon of cinnamon powder

This recipe yields about 350gms of jam.

# – Firstly,  peel and core the pineapples. Google how to peel/cut pineapple if you are not sure how.

# – Then, cut the pineapples into cubes and throw them into your food processor/blender. Add the ground cinnamon too. Blitz till puree consistency.

# – Now pour into a baking tray lined with aluminium foil. I lined my tray 3 times to prevent leakage. Then, put the tray in preheated oven of 80 degrees celcius. Stir once every hour for 4 hours with a rubber/silicon spatula. I advise against using a metal spoon cause it might puncture the aluminium foil.

# – Then, lower the temperature to 70 degrees celcius and leave it in the oven for and extra 8-12 hours. I did it at dinner time then went to bed and woke up next day to the aroma of pineapple jam. See how much liquid has evaporated after a total 12 hours.

# – Scoop the jam into a bowl and let chill in the fridge. It will be even firmer and roll-able after chilling. Taste so yummy!!

There’s really no need to add more refined sugar to pineapple jam. The pineapples themselves are naturally sweet enough and even more so when concentrated.

Hope this recipe will help you who are looking for a fuss free yet healthy pineapple jam recipe.

Next post will be the recipe of the actual paleo and AIP friendly pineapple tarts (I hope). Stay tuned.

Posted in: Dessert, Tips & Tricks, Vegetarian - Continue Reading

Making egg-less meringues with chickpea water or aquafaba – first attempt.

I make meringues quite a lot for fruit mess, which is one of my signature desserts whenever I’m entertaining at home. Although it only requires at minimum 2 ingredients (eggs and sugar), it’s a pretty technical dish that requires egg whites with no trace of yolk, absolutely clean utensils with no trace of grease, just the right amount of beating, etc. You can check out my post on making meringues here.

I have always thought that egg whites is irreplaceable in meringues. There’s no known ingredient that could whip up stiff like egg whites and then dehydrate beautifully in an oven into beautiful, crunchy, airy, sweet biscuits.

Back in May, I read an article on New York Times about aquafaba and I was just completely and utterly mind-blown. WHAT ON EARTH IS THIS SORCERY!?

# – Aquafaba on NYT.

Aquafaba is basically water that has been cooked with legumes such as chickpeas and canellini beans. So, that water that you drain off from a can of chickpeas, that’s aquafaba. For some reason, it has the ability to mimic the properties of egg whites and this was only discovered in 2015 by some dude named Goose Wohlt. So yeah, it’s a pretty new thing and honestly I am surprised I’ve only heard about this a year later.

After reading the NYT article, I knew I was going to attempt it. I know it sounds silly for somebody who cooks and bakes pretty regularly, but I really hate separating eggs. For some reason, I am horrendous at it. It’s one of my most hated things in the world and so to be able to make meringues without having to separate those evil eggs?

SIGN ME UP, BUTTERCUP!

# – I am so bad at separating eggs I actually bought this piece of shit that does not work. Maybe it’s still just me.

Anyway, back to present time. Today I finally got a chance to use a can of chickpeas for lunch. So, I made sure to reserve the drained liquid from the can and I was like, I am putting this aquafaba meringue thing to the test!

# – So I poured the liquid into my mixing bowl.

# – Put my beaters to it, and started beating.

OMG, it’s foaming up!!!!! It foamed up so easily, even easier than egg whites?

# – Getting to soft peak.

# – I sprinkled some icing sugar and continued beating until stiff peaks.

OMG,I could pipe it out!!!!!

# – These are my uncooked eggless meringues made from aquafaba and I wouldn’t be able to tell the difference from regular meringues. It tasted vaguely of chickpeas. Stuck em into my preheated oven of 130 degrees.

I was so excited by it all, I was updating dayre the blow by blow account of my aquafaba meringue making adventure. I tasted victory and glory. I couldn’t wait to eat my eggless meringues tonight with a pile of whipped cream and sweet yellow kiwis.

# – Showing off on Dayre.

I even shared my dayre post to Facebook cause, hell yeah I felt smuggggggggggg. And just right after sharing it to FB, I went to check the oven and this greeted me:

WHAT IN THE NAME OF THE AQUAFACKA IS THIS!!!!??????

I had to choose between removing this flattened, dead mess from my oven or delete the damn smug dayre post from my Facebook. I chose the latter.

And then I took the aquafailure out of my oven and cried. Okay I didn’t cry but I was really DULAN lah.

That is why, I am filing this post under Cooking Failures (go on, read it you probably need some laughs on Monday) and I could only speculate that the reasons to this messed up experiment were two:

1. My oven was too hot. I rechecked all the aquafaba meringue recipes and they’re all between 110c – 120c. My oven was 130c.

2. Not enough sugar. This was most likely it, as I don’t know why I just kinda of sprinkled and tasted the batter instead of measuring out the sugar LIKE I NORMALLY DO. Likely too little sugar -_-

If anyone has any inkling on where I went wrong, please do enlighten me.

Anyway, I’m not about to give up on aquafaba. I’m on a mission to make completely eggless meringues. Just you wait.

Posted in: Cooking Failures - Continue Reading

How to make chinese radish cake or turnip cake (lor bak gou)

I don’t know if I’m getting older or what, but am a lot more interested in making traditional chinese dishes nowadays. I hope Liam will grow up knowing and liking food from my part of his heritage.

I love radish cakes or turnip cakes or lor bak gou , especially the fried ones. I always order the dish whenever I eat at dimsum restaurants.

However, I’ve never made one, I don’t really know why. Maybe cause it’s easy to buy them?

Till I found this recipe from Mummy Tong, a Dayrean I follow. After reading her post, I was determined to make it.

I took some liberties with the amount of salt and also omitted one ingredient as I couldn’t find it. Also, this recipe is enough for TWO 8″ x 8″ tins. That’s too much for two people but it didn’t occur to me till much later lol.

Ingredients

(A)

  • 2 pieces or 100 gms Lap yok or Chinese bacon of long chinese waxed sausages (lapcheong), soaked in hot water and diced

  • 100 gm of lapyok or Chinese bacon (I didn’t use this as I couldn’t find it), diced

  • 30 gm of dried prawns, washed and drained

  • 5 small onions, diced

  • A handful of spring onions, chopped

  • About 1 kilo of radish, peeled and grated
  • (B)

  • 400 gm or rice flour

  • 2 tbsp of cornstarch

  • 600 ml of water
  • (C)

  • 2 tsp of salt (original recipe only called for 1 tsp)

  • 1/2 tsp of white pepper powder

  • 1 tsp of white fine sugar

  • 1 tbsp of sesame oil

  • 700 ml of water
  • (D) For garnish

  • Chopped spring onions

  • Fried shallots
  • #1 – Prepare ingredients (A).

    #2 – Still preparing ingredients (A), this is the grated radish.

    #3 – Prepare ingredients (B).

    #4 – Prepare ingredients (C).

    #5 – Fry the onions, dried prawns and chinese sausages in a dash of oil till fragrant.

    #6 – Add the grated radish and cook it down for a couple of minutes.

    #7 – Now add (C) to the mixture and stir.

    #8 – Followed by (B). Stir well.

    #9 – On low heat, keep on stirring till the mixture become sticky and lumpy. This process is quite fast.

    #10 – Now add the chopped spring onions and mix in.

    #11 – Scoop mixture into an oiled tin and cover with aluminium foil. Steam on medium heat for 45 minutes.

    #12 – Chinese radish cakes, DONE! Sprinkle with (D).

    #13 – Nice eaten steamed (dang good with a dollop of sriracha) but you can cut them out into cubes and fry them up with some chinese salted vegetable (choi bou) and bean sprouts too, which is what I am going to do for lunch today :D

    By the way, buy this radish…not the tiny red ones ya. Grate till you die hah!

    Thank you Mummy Tong for such a delicious recipe!

    Posted in: Homemade Recipes, Pork, Rice, Snacks - Continue Reading