Friday, March 27, 2009

Kiwi Pearsomore

Posted by Quinn at Friday, March 27, 2009 1 comments Links to this post

I've made 3 types of different fruit based smoothies for 3 days consequently. I'll probably attempt one more coffee based frappe and by the time I stop, my ice-cream maker would be here and then, yo'll see loads of gelato, sorbet and ice cream!

I've called this kiwi pearsomore because I've used kiwi and different types of pears I this and I kept asking for more of this!

Again, I've used very ripe pears and yogurt to make it thick and slushy. I always like mine thick, almost scoopable from spoon.

What I've used:

2 green kiwi, mine's a lil on the tart side
1 ripe red pear
1 ripe green pear
1/4 cup yogurt
1/4 cup coconut and pineapple juice

Place all in a large beaker and blend away until thick and slushy!

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Smoothie Criminal

Posted by Quinn at Friday, March 27, 2009 0 comments Links to this post

Hmmm.....sometimes you just can't seem to make a glass of goodness guilty smoothie looks good. Blame it on my stick blender. It's only of 250 wattage but it's dirt cheap so can't help it.

This time around, I've used blueberry and the last banana on my pantry to do this. He dropped in a couple of leftover grapes. Again, I've used the same pineapple and coconut juice and milk (1/4 cup each). I don't intend to make this healthy whatsover. I'd rather have it yummy. To this, I've top up with 1 large scoop of vanilla ice cream and blend them all together.

I put in this whole pack of blueberry. Was on special and will regret if I don't buy them!

This smoothie of mine was a little on the thick and chunky sides. I added another 1/4 cup of milk to thin it out. It's not really that chunky, it's just that the tiny blades refuse to work harder in blending the blueberries and grapes skin into one.

All in all, this made 4 tall wine glass serving again and it was good to gulp it down with my housemates.

This does not keep well. It was out at room temperature for just 15mins and the banana starts making the whole smoothie a lot thicker (probably due to pectin) and turn into a dark disgusting brown mixture. Taste wise remains the same though.

This is my second smoothie for 2 days in a row. I have a 3rd one coming which I've just made just now. I promise this will be te last one for the mean time.

Because.....I've added another new gadget into my kitchen. It's an ice-cream maker that I just bought online. AUD40 including postage, good value for money I would say.

Alton Brown got me hooked on making sorbets. I'm so gonna try making gelato, soft serve and my faourite green tea ice cream!

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Very Berry Smoothie

Posted by Quinn at Friday, March 27, 2009 0 comments Links to this post

This is my newfound interest for the time being! I just bought a new set of blender that comes in the form of a stick. It also provides a chopper as well as generous beaker. So far I've used it to blend soups, grind my nuts into fine meal for flourless cakes, chop onions and any other vegetables into fine pieces, make my Indian spice paste and a lot more.

I just can't recall how my life without a stick blender was before this! What kinda' era was that?

Anyway, here is a handy list of ingredients I've used for my very first smoothie which as you figured out from the name, consist of a lot of berries. I've also used a pineapple and coconut juice instead of milk to make the whole thing even healthier. Erm, actually not so but it makes you feel good when you tell people your smoothie recipe consist of 8 types of different fruits in it (for me, it's banana, coconut, pineapple, raspberries, blackberries, wild blueberries, red currants and black currants).

I've also added a 'No Fat' yogurt just to make it creamier and guilt-free. I don't know bout you but this taste awesome for me and my housemates so do give it a try if you do have a box of unused frozen mixed berries and don't knwo what to do with it!

1 large overly-riped banana
4 tbsp of fat free vanilla yogurt (I made my first batch using Greek Yogurt and they were very yummy too!)
1/2 cup of frozen mixed berries
1/2 cup of your favourite fruit juice (I've used pineapple and coconut juice but make sure it's got real fruit juice in it!)

In no sequence, chuck everything by guesstimation if you like into a large beaker (at least of 3 cups capacity) and use a stick blender to blend them into submission.

You could also do it with a normal blender. But if you are using a stick blender, my suggestion is that make sure the stick blnder is already in tthere before you add things in. I'll also usually pour in liquid first followed by my chopped fruits (I just tear apart the banana into chunks) so I don't have to make my blender work harder.

Garnish with fresh mint leaves and serve.

I made about 4 wine glasses of the size you see in the picture.

Random: This is my current favourite song, Promise Of A Lifetime !

I do hope you try it and leave me your feedback!

Lots more smoothies on its way!

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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Life in Adelaide

Posted by Quinn at Tuesday, March 17, 2009 0 comments Links to this post

It's been a while since I last blog and share my success and failure. In fact, this is the very first time I'm doing it (blogging) ever since coming to Australia. Don't take into account the Halloween post as that was drafted.

Time sure do flies and it's been about a month plus ever since I came to Adelaide. A week before I flew here, I was having a bad mixed feeling. Things such as medical check up, my student visa and my acceptance in the University of Adelaide are not of my concern as I've settled that sometime earlier. It is of my concern that I'll be parting from my beloved family (yet again) and be in the arms of my lovely boyfriend. You lost something and you gain something, such is life.

On the bright side, food is not of my concern as I'm pretty interested in whipping up Indian and Italian cuisine lately. More about that later on in CookingQuinn but what I am going to share now is the feeling of having to go through all 'these'.

Culture shock was one of them. Melbourne's experience did little to help my situation get better. My heart was yearning for my family who are miles away. Averagely in Melbourne last year, I cried 12 times a year, making that once a month. Having to come to Adelaide, I cried almost every night for the first fortnight of my stay.

Bunking into the temporary accomodation sucks! Food was a major issue as we couldn't get hold of a kitchen to cook. Within that one week period, we have to attend orientation (which already run 2 weeks before our arrival), look for a permanent place to live in for approximately a year, get used to the city and we do a lot of walking. Heaps of them under a scorching burning sun.

I was totally unhappy and on many occasions, I felt I was on the verge of getting a nervous breakdown. The rest of the story was well you could say history.

Now, here i am, in Adelaide doing my Masters in Petroleum Engineering. Even after uni life started, it did little to ease my homesickness. We argued a lot over many small matters that is not of concern to any couples around the world. We threw tantrums at each other and having said hurtful words which you probably don't even mean more than half of it was the worst nightmare. When you walk out the street, you see 1 Asian in every 10 Caucasians. Not that I am making a racist remark but I am using that as a point to further strengthen my homesickness.

Uni life is hectic. It is 9 am till 5 pm every Monday to Friday. One week elapsed mark the end of one subject. And I only have 9 subjects to do for a year. So you could probably see that as working only 9weeks out of 52weeks, what more should I ask for?

I'm supposed to be very busy with my assignments now considering that I screwed up my 25% test (I barely pass) but I wouldn't budge an inch. The heart felt so heavy and so not motivated. The desire of switching to another course gets stronger over time. And all that could only be blurted here and to no one else.

Let's talk about something more cheerful. Adelaide is a small place just like Kuala Lumpur. The difference is, it is much more panoramic and has lotsa trees and fresh, unpolluted air. It is very tranquil and peaceful. A very easy going place I would call it. The only night life here you get is probably drinking during the weekends in hotels and pubs. I am grewing to love the night life too. Sipping white wine over a comfort chat is teh perfect comfort zone. I am staying off-campus in North Adelaide in a luxurious looking place called Brougham Place. It was a love at first sight for the both of us. Big rooms, big house, everything big and a perfect balcony overlooking the city view. The only drawback, there is only one bathroom to share among the 5 of us. However, the 5 of us befriended each other easily and are now besties. We ar all Asians and from time to time speak our mother's tongue. It felt so comfy and homely.

I hate the insecure feeling I am having right now. I hallucinate and become very dreamy sometimes. Since I am at a very clear state of mind typing this, I thought it is only logical for me to note down what's really in my heart. Coming to Adelaide without much friends and finding my way around was scary. Luckily for me I had help, it made things a lot easier. We both need each others help let it be academically or non-academically. Leaving my comfort zone and coming here definitely was not an easy task. I guess that is what everybody goes through when they go to a new place. It is part and parcel of life. You just need to adapt to sorta get around. You basically have to start from scratch.... meeting new people and getting accustomed to the place.

I kinda wanna end this post half-hanging.

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My First Ever Halloween Cake!

Posted by Quinn at Tuesday, March 17, 2009 0 comments Links to this post

This is it! I've been dawdling forever to post up my last year's Halloween Cake a.k.a. also my house mate's birthday. Happy Belated Birthday Monique! Just in case you are wondering, the round whitish ball right next to the tomb is actually an eyeball but I clearly failed to frighten with that kind of effect.

Check out what the tombstone has to say about Monique. Pardon the slanted wordings. Need a lot of practising. The green dessicated coconut is supposed to look like a pathway. I then added oreo crumbs mixed with some cake crumbs from leveling the cake to form the tar surface with a humongous hand crawling from underneath.

I made the hand with marzipan and assemble the fingers separately and later use a fork to make the stitches. The blood is a result from diluted raspberry jam and a lil' red colouring.

I made a zebra cake for the cake base and use a chocolate topping from my other steamed cake.

Apart from the cake, we also cook Monique a rather decent dinner and not forgetting some dyed red eggs for her birthday. She reckons this is the most important thing for a Chinese birthday celebration. Looking at my eggs, I know I need a lot of improvement and look up pages like this one. Sheeesshhhh.... why have I not thought of vinegar! Anyhow, I still put up this ugly picture because I'm supposed to share my ups and downs in baking and cooking with you guys.

See, I actually made a couple of frightening eyes to choose from but sadly none of them look scary at all. Just in case any of you wanna know, I have an unfinished chocolate cake with ganache. I take all of it and simply mix it up to form a paste and later form a ball truffle like. Freeze it well and coat it with white buttercream or just white chocolates unless you want the smooth eye effect.
This is one mini ice-cream cake (I hate to call it a cake cuz it is not!) that we made for her to blow candles when the clock strikes 12.

This is how the top view of the cake look like before going into the oven. Can't resist to put it up cuz it look so artistic! Flaunt it!

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