Sunday, January 24, 2016

Oven Baked Pumpkin Bun

This is another good pumpkin recipe :) yea I love pumpkin whether in cakes , buns, bread or stir fry. But of late I love them in buns.  When I saw this beautiful pumpkin bun on Happy Home Baking ( oh by the way , I have been her fan since 2008 when I first started blogging....she is a great baker ), I knew I had to make them ..they are not just delicious but darn good is the word to describes these cutie buns.  It involved quite a bit of work to make it look like a little pumpkin.  From her blog , I learned to tie the bun with twines.  Thank you HHB for sharing !

The tying and making sure they are equally sectioned by the twine soaked in olive oil is indeed challenging.  I love challenges ! And here I am sharing what HHB shared on her blog...of course thanks to Carol Hu for first sharing the technique of tying the bun with twines.  Love the soft fluffy texture of the bun and the delicious creamy pumpkin filling.  Worth all the effort of making them for our tea snacks and supper. I made a load and kept them in the fridge for our suppers.  All I have to do is to zap them in the microwave for just 30 secs and it is ready for eating...hehehehe try it and you will want to make them again and again.  

love making them ...make me happy everytime I get to bake

 the twine has to be soaked in oil before use
cut each twine to a length of 90 cm for each bun

just have to make sure the sections are equal
I feel I need to practice more to achieve equal sections
after baking :)

after tying with the twine, leave the bun proof 
before baking

love my the cutie buns

put a clove in the middle of the bun to act as
a stem of does looked like
a pumpkin alright :)

 baked for 15-18 mins till cooked and lightly brown,
take out of the oven and let it cool on the rack
before serving

one for Wild Boar with his cuppa hot nescafe
mmmm...he is gaining weight alright
heehee while I am losing weight
but this is freaking healthy so I allowed him 
2 buns for his tea snack :p

look how luscious the creamy pumpkin filling is
and the soft and fluffy texture of the bun :)

this is taken with my new Nikon D 3200
so super happy with the shallow depth of field (the blurry background)

another beautiful shot with the Nikon D3200

gosh.... the  luscious creamy pumpkin filling makes me drool :)

Oven Baked Pumpkin Bun - adapted from HHB

(makes 9 buns)

for the bread dough:
250g bread flour
15g caster sugar
2g salt (about 1/2 teaspoon)
3g instant yeast (about 1 teaspoon)
80ml milk
100g mashed pumpkin (nett weight of pumpkin which is steamed, drained and mashed)
15g unsalted butter (cut into cubes)

for the filling:
300g mashed pumpkin (nett weight of pumpkin which is steamed, drained and mashed)
30g sugar
30g unsalted butter

*9 pieces of kitchen twine (90cm each), soak in oil

to make filling (watch video here):
* Pan fry mashed pumpkin in a pan till fairly dry. Add in butter and sugar and pan fry till well mixed. Dish up and leave to cool. (Note: do not add in the butter and sugar too early as it will cause the mixture to burn easily.)

to make the bread dough:
* Place bread flour, sugar, salt, yeast, milk and mashed pumpkin in the mixing bowl of a stand mixer. Let the mixer knead the dough on high speed until the ingredients come together to form a dough, takes about 8 to 10 mins. Add in the butter gradually and continue to knead for another 15~20mins until the dough becomes smooth and elastic.

* Place dough in a lightly greased (use vegetable oil or butter) mixing bowl, cover with cling wrap or a damp cloth and let proof in room temperature (around 28 to 30 degC) for about one hour, or until double in bulk.

* Remove the dough from the bowl and give a few light kneading to press out the gas in the dough. Divide the dough into 9 equal portions (about 50g each). Roll each dough into smooth rounds, cover with a damp cloth or cling wrap and let the doughs rest for 10mins.

* On a lightly floured work surface, roll each dough into a round disc. Press out any trapped air as you flatten the dough. Wrap each dough with one heaped tablespoon of the pumpkin filling. Pinch and seal the seam tightly.

to shape the dough (watch video here):
* For each wrapped dough, place seam side down on the middle of a kitchen twine, wrap the kitchen twine around the dough to form 8 segments (note: do not wrap too tight).

* Place seam side down on a greased (or lined with parchment paper) baking tray. Space doughs two inches apart to allow them to expand. Cover with damp cloth or cling wrap and leave doughs to proof for the second time for about 40mins, or until double in size.

* Bake in pre-heated oven at 180 deg C for 15 mins or until golden brown (if necessary, tent the surface with foil if the top browns too quickly closer to the baking time). Remove from oven and transfer to wire track to let cool a little. Remove the kitchen twine. Leave to cool completely and store immediately in an airtight container. If there are any leftovers after the second day, it is best to store them in the fridge, reheat/warm in oven before serving.

Recipe source: adapted from 'Carol 自在生活'

Online Music Instrument Stores

Talking about buying musical instruments or musical assessories online, I would say Wild Boar is well verse.  He has a few online music instrument stores  that he often visited and buy things from. He is pleased that most of them will ship to Malaysia and prices are in Ringgit, making it easy for him.  He is happy that there is sales and he could get good discounts for some of the items that he has been eyeing and now is the time to get them at discounted prices.

He has been wanting to get music sheets and method books for our son, Joshua and now is the best time to get them for Joshua :)  the perfect timing.  Okay , we are cheap skate people, waiting for sales before buying...well, now economy is weakest so it is best to get stuff when there is sales..right ! Save our wallet and I am happy that Wild Boar choose the right online music instrument stores to get them for Josh !

Saturday, January 23, 2016

German Cake - Juchheim

The cake that earned the title " King of Cakes"  From the outside , it looks like an ordinary cylindrical ring.  Slice across it, and it appears like the section of a tree with concentric rings; hence the name " tree ring cake " . In Europe, Baumkuchen is also known as the " King of Cakes" and commands a premium price.  This is closely related to its complex and exquisite baking process, The prepared ingredients are meticulously rolled onto a rotation wooden rod, and then baked while rotating the rod. This befits the original meaning of the  German name of ring cake ( Baumkuchen) which means " cake of the tree ".

For a cake with a German origin to become hugely popular in Japan, its unique ring shape and moral representation play a key role, in addition to its delicate texture and savouring taste.  As we all know, the annual rings of a tree are formed over a long period of irrigation and growth.  Similarly, the Baumkuchen requires a lengthy and exquisite preparation effort by the pastry chef, and instils a visual and gustatory sense of precipitation and accumulation of time.  It is akin to intensively cultivated love and affection over a long period of time that stood the test of fire and finally came to fruition, when one gets to enjoy the touching mellow flavour that is as sweet as honey.  Due to its beautiful moral representation in Japan, Baumkuchen is often presented as a gift to important friends, family or lover.

thank you Joshua and Elaine for this beautiful German cake...
after reading the write out on this cake...especially  the last line
"Baumkuchen is often presented as a gift to important friends,
family and lover"   ...awww so sweet of you both !

tasted so good that now as I am writing this post...
both Wild Boar and myself is craving for it.

moist and yet light....

thanks Elaine and Joshua for the McIvers's tea
 all the way from Melbourne :)
1)Ginger & Lemongrass 
2) Settle,Petal -S.African honeybush with chamomile and flowers
3) Mexican Mango Chilli...

Word from the Founder

Karl Juchheim  - 1886-1945
Elise Juchheim - 1892 -1971

"Pure and natural is the secret to 
good taste that is good for the body,
Every piece is the exquisite work of 
the pastry chef with Nature innovation
that sustains tradition of 
Mother's homemade flavours "

Juchheim : Legendary entrepreneur across 3 geographical regions

The corporate name "Juchheim " originated from its founder Karl Joseph Wilhelm Juchheim. A German born in 1886, he brought the Baumkuchen from Europe to Japan and started a monumental business legend.

BEfore he started out in Japan, Mr.Juccheim first went to Qingdao, China. His original intention was to set root in Qingdao. He returned to the place in 1914 with his newly-wed wife, Elise. However, they only had five days of happy married life during the volatile situation because Mr,Juchheim was forced to relocate to Japan; and they were separated for five years.  After they were reunited in Japan, they opened their first confectionery shop " Juchheim" in Yokohama in 1921.  Unfortunately, their shop was totally destroyed in an earthquake two years later.  They moved to Kobe and opened another shop in 1923.  The incessant wars destroyed their then popular confectionary shop and killed their son.  Mr. Juccheim, saddened by the loss of his shop and son , died later .  In 1950, with the effort of old employees, " Juchheim Co. Ltd " was rebuilt on the west side of  Ikuta Shrine; and Ms. Elise who was repatriated to Germany, was invited back to become the second president in 1953.  By 1960, the Company had three branches. The current president, Mr.Takeshi Kawamoto, officially started to work in the company in 1964.

Today, Juchheim Co., Ltd is one of the largest F & B and coffee shop chain companies in Japan. The bumpy and rough business progress of the Company is much like their famous flagship product, the ring-shape Baumkuchen. It is such tough grueling tests that resulted in the pondering deep mellow taste.

He Found It !

Wild Boar loves  recommending to all his music friends. The best place to order musical assessories and musical instruments from there.  Recently, his music friends that he hangs out was looking for a weather-resistant vinyl marshall valvestate cover.  Joe is one of his best friend whom he goes jamming out with.  And dear Wild Boar recommended him to . He fell in love with it for the cover is affordable, and durable and made to fit his Marshall VS amp head and he loves the Marshall logo on the cover.  Well, a good buy I would say...thanks to good ole Wild Boar for the recommendation :)

This is how the cover looks like...affordable and will keep his gear looking great for years.  Joe is like a child at times.  Love anything that will make him feel young and happy . Music is his soulmate and I love hanging out with him too.  Makes us happy to be in his company. WB is happy that Joe got what he wanted .  Hopefully the cover will arrive before CNY.  It does look cool !

Monday, January 18, 2016

Steamed Tapioca With Gula Melaka Caramel

Bought some tapioca from Tesco coz WB has a craving for it.  He craves for the steamed tapioca served with gula melaka caramel.  I was scratching my head how to make the fragrant gula melaka /palm sugar caramel and tried to google for the recipe but could not find one that was what WB wanted.  I gave it a shot and just cooked the gula melaka with coconut milk bought from the wet market.  WB somehow doesn't like the carton type of coconut milk. He prefers the one from the wet market...freshly juiced out from the machine. Me too for that matter.  Anyway, I managed to get the consistency that he loves.  A great Sunday afternoon snack for my Wild Boar :)  

cook gula melaka under low heat with screwpine leaves 
and coconut milk till the sauce thickens
 into caramel and fragrant

love the texture of the steamed tapioca

love the sweet fragrant gula melaka caramel

I love how the caramel trickles down onto the steamed tapioca
and I managed to get a good shot 
with my new Nikon D3200  :)

Steamed Tapioca With Gula Melaka Caramel

2 medium sized tapioca - pared off skin and cut into thick strips

Steamed the tapioca strips  in boiling steamer for 25-30 mins or till cooked. Use a fork to test whether the tapioca is cooked. If it goes through , then it is cooked. Off heat and remove any excess water from the plate of tapioca strips.  Served with the gula melaka caramel.

gula melaka caramel:

3/4 cup coconut milk
1 piece of gula melaka ( 200 gm )
1 screwpine leaf - tie into knot

Combine all the above ingredients in a sauce pot and stir cook under low heat till sauce thickens and turned caramel.  Off the heat and pour the caramel into a serving dish.  Serve with the steamed tapioca.  

Enjoy !

Korg Synthesizers

Today's digital keyboards almost all use some form of synthesis to create their sounds. Whether small, monophonic analog synths to powerful digital workstations with built-in sequencing and recording capability, the contemporary range of synthesizers can be mind boggling. Guitar Center offers many range of synthesizers , and if you are looking for korg synthesizer , you can consult their keyboard department and spend some time discussing your needs and they can help zero in on the one that's right for you . And if you are keen to have a deeper understanding about synthesizers, Guitar Center offers a number of books with great resources for better understanding of synthesis. Synthesizers  not  only can imitate other instruments but can also make entirely new sounds that could not otherwise exist. 

Wild Boar, my hubby, recently owns a second hand electronic keyboard, actually given to him as a gift from his friend with built in sequencing and recording capability and I am sure he will be glad to get some books on synthesis. I have never seen WB so passionate in learning to  play the keyboard . Hope the interest will last :)

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Steamed Pumpkin Bun

With some leftovers pumpkin, I decided to make these delectable steamed pumpkin buns that I saw on Wendy's blog - Table For 2 or more.  It really made me drooled all over when I saw hers on my lappy some days back :)  Now opportunity strikes when I had some leftovers after making pumpkin soup.  It turned out really nice especially the fillings and the buns dough was soft and fluffy after steaming.  Even WB who is not a pumpkin person loves the pumpkin fillings.  I love it too and no regrets making them though it took some time to make them.  Thank you Wendy for sharing your own tweaked one ,after the first one from the publication didn't work out well :)

I could not help taking out my Nikon dslr and started shooting away in between the cooking steps. and am so happy with the photos.  Still have lots to learn about food photography and I am really in love with my new toy...but meanwhile bear with my poor shoots at times for I am a beginner with a dslr camera.  Went to sleep with the ISO, Aperture and Shutter speed still in the mind for each time I take out the camera, WB will be there to give some lessons...hands on lesson....okay cant blame me for going to bed with his voice still ringing in the brains :) but whatever he is a good mentor and I love him for the patience in teaching me.  Thank you WB for being a mentor to a slow to catch up student :p but looking at the photos, I hope you are pleased with my work thus far :)

luscious and delicious pumpkin filling

soft and pliable dough

love this shot...divided the dough into 12 portions

12 pieces of filling , chilled in the fridge
*WB is happy with this photo...he said great job
and I am pleased too !

place a piece of filling on the flattened dough

wrap and seal the edges 
another nice shot with bokeh
I am pleased with myself :p

letting it proof for 45 mins before
I steamed them for 12 mins over high heat

a beautiful piece of pumpkin bun
soft and fluffy with delectable filling...yummy!

Steamed Pumpkin Bun - adapted from Wendy - Table For 2 or More

For the filling:

300 gm pumpkin puree
30 gms sugar
1 tsp cornstarch

Cook until thickens and use 2 teaspoons to form into little balls and place on a lined tray. Chill until time of use.


60 gm sugar
90 gm pumpkin puree
1 tsp instant yeast (Mauripan doesn't work well with this recipe )

150 gm pau flour
1 tsp double acting baking powder or regular baking powder
10 gm butter

1. Combine sugar, pumpkin puree and yeast.
2. Combine pau flour, double action baking powder and butter. Mix to form crumbs.
3. Pour (1) and (2) and mix to form a dough.
4. Knead dough until it is smooth and no longer sticky.
5. Let dough proof in a warm place until double in size. Remember to cover it. Assembly.


1. Punch down dough after it has doubled. Knead it for 2 minutes and divide dough into 12 pieces.

2. Remove pumpkin filling from the fridge.

3. With lightly floured hands, take one piece of dough and flatten it, making it thinner at the sides.

4. Place one piece of filling, round side down onto flatted dough.

5. Wrap and seal bun.

6. Seam side down, make marks that resemble a pumpkin using a dinner knife.

7. Let buns proof (covered) for 45 minutes and steam on high heat for 12 minutes.

Enjoy !