Thursday, May 1, 2014

Taste of home

Happy Labor Day!

I kinda think it's a pseudo mother's day in disguise.
> More Mother's Day treats

Besides being in labor for a good many hours to bring us into the world, moms constantly labor over their children - feeding, schooling, nurturing, dressing, fussing over.

A lifelong stint.
No return policy :)

And for this reason, home truly is where mom is.

Moms have a magical power (also known as 'sheer love') to create warmth, and we've 2 desserts that are the quintessential taste of home.

Sesame Matcha Cupcakes


This is such a warm, earthy cupcake that pairs
perfectly with a very grown-up matcha frosting. 

The slightly bitter edge from the sesame seeds 
keeps each mouthful light, and fills you with the 
warmth of home, especially on a cold rainy day.

Recipe from 6bittersweets here. I prefer a slightly
stronger sesame taste, and upped the amount of seeds
to nearly half cup; you can always adjust as you like it.

 Toast the sesame for 3-5 min in a dry pan to release
the oils and flavors, then give it a blitz in the food
processor or mortar and pestle. The toasting brings
out the most amazing aromas.

Resist temptation to gobble seeds up; you'll either
burn your tongue from the heat, or be left
short of seeds for your cupcakes.

Either way, it doesn't end well!

The smell of pastries fresh out of the oven is heavenly.
My favorite time to take a bite or two out of the bakes -
when they're barely cool enough to hold!

The key is to get good sesame. The black seeds
have a stronger aroma, and look gorgeous
coloring the cupcakes a milky ash.

To complete the look, save some
of the toasted seeds to sprinkle on top.


Zingy Ginger Crunch


Ginger is a flavor that I only grew to appreciate 
in my early adulthood. It used to be 'that 
weird yellow spice' in stir frys and steamed 
dishes, but I've since since learnt the error of my ways. 

It's a magical elixir that gives a dessert an 
extra taste dimension, and lifts warm drinks
 from the ordinary to extraordinary.

This recipe is from Taste.com, and the baked crunchy 
base is a superb counterbalance to the ginger 
layer that would otherwise be too sweet on its own. 

I like to serve these in little cubes. They pack
quite a punch, and go blissfully with green tea.

 More homey desserts:
> Fruity chiffon cake
> Sweet, sweet strawberries
> Double chocolate chip shortbread
> Rich red velvet cake
> Ombre swirl cookies