Saturday, August 13, 2011

Japanese Cheesecake

As D loves cheesecakes, I decided to do my due diligence as gf and revisited this Japanese cheesecake recipe. Plus I wanted a red-and-white (okay this is more like yellow) cake to commemorate National Day. I've made this recipe once, baked it in a water bath and with other changes I cannot recall. It turned out creamy- more like a New York Cheesecake than a fluffy Japanese version that D prefers. This time I baked it without a water bath; it turned out more airy but had folds like a fat tummy:

It rose really high in the oven, up to the top of the cake pan, and then receded, causing the folds. I'm not sure why- but my best guess is that I shouldn't have lowered the temperature to 150 deg c. 180 deg c as stipulated by the recipe may have been too hot because the top started to crack 3 minutes into baking, but perhaps 150 is too low (total baking time: 56 min). Next time I'll try baking this at 170 deg c; hopefully it wouldn't recede and so give a more fluffy texture.. let me know if you have solutions to receding cakes! Future amendments: reduce the sugar (65g for half the recipe is still too much) and corn flour (slightly powdery mouthfeel). Adding the full amount of lemon juice, though it seemed a lot at the time, actually gave just the right amount of sourness.

It was a yummy cake that was polished off.  Next time it'll be better when it counts- when D is actually around it eat it!

 Majulah Singapura!  

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Blueberry muffins

I had leftover sour cream from a batch of banana muffins - the perfect chance to try out this blueberry recipe that had been in my "bookmarks" folder for far too long. It's a recipe that I'm going to be keeping in my back pocket; a simple crowd-pleaser. The resultant texture is like a scone's, except more moist and fluffy. Replacing some butter with sour cream lets the blueberry flavour shine; a refreshing change from store-bought butter laden ones. A buttery muffin base may be suitable for chocolate muffins, but I find blueberry muffins are far better off with a creamy base.

Recipe adapted from here (Makes 12 muffins)

2 1/2 cups  all purpose flour
1/2 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
100g unsalted butter, softened
3/8 cup white sugar (a 1/4 cup scoop filled one and a half times)
2 large eggs
11/2 cups sour cream
1 tsp lemon zest (zest of 1 lemon)
1/2 tbsp vanilla essence
125g blueberries

1. In a big bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt.
2. In another big bowl, cream the butter and sugar together till fluffy. Mix in eggs 1 at a time. Stir in lemon zest and vanilla.
3. Mix in half of the dry ingredients till just incorporated.
4. Mix in half of the sour cream then beat for about 30 sec.
5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for the rest of dry ingredients and sour cream. Ensure you reach the bottom of the bowl when you mix.
6. Stir in blueberries. Fill up muffin cases. Don't bother smoothing the tops or pushing them down; they'll level out in the oven.
7. Bake at 180 deg c for 25 min, on the centre rack of the oven. Then move to upper rack to brown the tops, about 5 min (keep an eye on them to avoid burning).