Sunday, February 27, 2011

"Mantou" = Steamed Bread

Going back to our childhood, we would always eat "mantou" or steamed bread. This break, we had a try at it ourselves; granted, it was the first time but it was a tasty snack nevertheless. See for yourself!


6 cups of flour
1 tbsp. yeast
1/2 cup sugar
1 3/4 cup warm water (add more as needed to keep moisture- 3 cups of flour to 1 cup of water ratio)
2 tbsp. vegetable oil


Add water, sugar, and yeast, and let it rise for five minutes.
Dump mixture into flour. Mix or knead until dough is smooth, and then keep it mildly warm (on stove top for example) and cover it with a wet paper towel; let it rise 2 to 4 hours.

Take dough and cut in half. Take one half and roll it lengthwise until it looks like a long roll. After establishing the length of about 2 ft, roll it out so it still maintains its approx. 7 in. width and 2 to 3ft length, with a "height" or thickness of about a quarter inch.

After rolling it out, take a knife and cut strips of about a quarter inch width. You should cut it so the strips are short, not long as if cutting along the length. Leave the strips of dough right there, do not stack- simply leave as you cut. After cutting the strips, use your own judgment and take about 6 to 8 strips and take the ends as they lay on the table, and press together so they stick. Then, roll them until you get a roll of strips. Continue with the rest of the strips of dough, as well as with the other half of the dough.

*You may also want to brush honey on top of the rolls to make it a bit sweeter.

Let the dough rolls set for about 10 minutes. You may want to cover with a wet paper towel to maintain moisture. Then, put a few in a steamer for about 14 minutes. And there you go! Enjoy!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Frosted Sugar Cookies

Ever feel like there's no end in sight? 

That's kind of how school feels like right now.

But a fantastic friend reminded me today,

"at the end of the long long tunnel, there is a BLINDING light... 
                                                                     or a GIANT pot of gold to dive into"

We just gotta keep reminding ourselves that we will get through it!

Anyways, onto sweeter things!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Pizza Dough

One of my favorite things ever is Pizza!

Experimenting with pizza is a lot of fun since usually you can't really go wrong.

If you want to go healthy, add some broccoli, mushrooms, or green or red peppers.
If you want to really unhealthy, try adding some fries on top. Yum!
You can always try getting a rotisserie chicken, mixing it with barbecue sauce and adding it on top.

What are your favorite pizza toppings?

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake

Anyone catch Lady Gaga arriving to the Grammys in a giant dinosaur egg?

...WHAT? Plus, she was on 60 minutes. What craziness! I also could not get over her weird prosthetic pointy shoulders. It both fascinated and totally grossed me out.

Awards season is just too amusing. 

Anyways, back to more important matters. Cake!

I love cinnamon (of course) but I also love chocolate.  This cake combines the two and still has a great rich cake base. The not-so-secret ingredient? Sour cream!

Totally unexpected, but it makes the cake so good.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Fortune Cookies

Happy Belated Chinese New  Year!

So Chinese New Years was really last week, and at home we would normally celebrate with a huge New Year's feast.  This year, at my home away from home, few friends decided to have a potluck to commemorate the year of the Rabbit. 

In addition to making a normal traditional dish, these Fortune Cookies were a great addition to the dinner.  So I assumed that these cookies were just another American invention, like McDonalds, Google, or the Oscars. Apparently, Fortune Cookies are Japanese in origin, brought over by the Chinese and just took off in the U.S.!

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