Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Moon Cakes

(By Yan Can Cook, Inc)

Makes 2 dozen
1 can (17-1/2 ounces) lotus seed paste
1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts

4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2-cup non-fat dried milk powder
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup solid shortening, melted and cooled
1 egg yolk , lightly beaten

1. Mix lotus seed paste and walnuts together in a bowl; set aside.

2. Sift flour, milk powder, baking powder, and salt together into a bowl. In large bowl of electric mixer, beat eggs on medium speed until light and lemon colored. Add sugar; beat for 10 minutes or until mixture falls in a thick ribbon. Add melted shortening; mix lightly. With a spatula, fold in flour mixture.
Turn dough out on a lightly floured board; knead for 1 minute or until smooth and satiny. Divide dough in half; roll each half into a log. Cut each log into 12 equal pieces.

3. To shape each moon cake, roll a piece of dough into a ball. Roll out on a lightly floured board to make a 4-inch circle about 1/8-inch thick.
Place 1 tablespoon of lotus seed paste mixture in center of dough circle. Fold in sides of dough to completely enclose filling; press edges to seal. Lightly flour inside of moon cake press with 2-1/2 inch diameter cups. Place moon cake, seam side up, in mold; flatten dough to conform to shape of mold. Bang one end of mold lightly on work surface to dislodge moon cake. Place cake on ungreased baking sheet. Repeat to shape remaining cakes. Brush tops with egg yolk.

4. Bake in a preheated 375 degree F. oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to a rack and let cool.

Monday, 17 September 2007

Carrot, Lentil & Coriander Dip

2 tablespoons of oil
1 chopped onion
2 cloves garlic
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
10 fresh curry leaves (optional)
3 teaspoons curry powder
1 cup red lentils (soaked & drained)
1 1/2 cups of water (about)
2 tablespoon of shredded coconut
4 large carrots cooked and mashed
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons chopped coriander
Heat the oil, add onions and cook until soft.
Add seeds & heat until they pop (1 or 2 minutes).
Add curry leaves & curry powder, cook for 1 minute.
Add lentils, water and coconut.
Simmer gently until lentils are soft.
Remove curry leaves.
Stir in carrots and cook for a few minutes to develop the flavours.
Mash or puree to a thick paste.
Stir in coriander.
Serve with pita bread.

Sunday, 16 September 2007

Brett's Grandma's Prize Winning Sponge Cake

This is a wonderful, easy sponge cake recipe that my Grandmother won many Champion cake ribbons in Country NSW during the 1940s, 50s, 60s, and 70s.

4 eggs - separated
Pinch salt
¾ cup sugar
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon butter
3 tablespoons boiled water

Beat egg whites till stiff
Add sugar a little at a time
Add beaten egg yolks, then well sifted flour and baking powder
Lastly add butter and boiled water.
Beat with wooden spoon for 3 minutes
Turn into well greased, lightly floured sponge tin
Bake for 20-25 minutes in a moderately hot oven (about 200C)

Thursday, 13 September 2007


Makes 1 dozen
2 1/2 cups SR flour (you could substitute about 1/2 to 1 cup finely chopped nuts here or some coconut flour or rice flour etc but I didn't this time)
1 cup coconut
1/2 cup sugar (this is about 1/2 the recipe in the book)
1-2 Tbl finely grated citrus peel (I used blood orange peel and 2 finely chopped kaffir lime leaves)
1/2 cup yoghurt
1/2 cup milk (or a little more, added later)
125g butter, melted
2 eggs
poppy seeds to taste but also try wattle seeds
(I added some redcurrants, for the colour)
1/4 cup sugar (this is about 1/2 the recipe in the book)
1/4 cup water
2 tsp finely grated citrus peel (I used lemon peel and lime leaves)
1/3 cup citrus juice (Iused blood orange juice)

I use patty pans to line the muffin tins to avoid all that washing up.

Combine wet ingredients and stir into combined dry ingredients only until there are no dry bits left. You may need to add a little more milk if there is still some dry flour. The mixture should be very stiff and not at all sloppy. This is the key to good muffins.

Bake 200 degress about 20 minutes. Meanwhile make the syrup: Combine everything in a small pan and simmer 2 minutes or longer.

Tranfer hot muffins to a wire rack over a tray. With one hand squeeze each muffin open a little and pour in a soupspoonful of syrup.

Preferably eat the same day. After a few days they are wonderful heated, split open and dolloped with cream or yoghurt. Sorry, I forgot to take a photo !

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Hummus (Chickpea Dip)


1 1/2 cups of cooked chickpeas
juice of 1 lemon
1 clove crushed garlic
2 tablespoons of tahini (sesame seed paste)
salt and white pepper to taste
small pinch of chilli powder
3 tablespoons of olive oil
(a little hot water if mixture is too thick)


Puree all ingredients in a food processor until thick and creamy.
If mixture is too thick add a little hot water.
Mixture will thicken slightly on standing.
Serve with fresh vegetables or toasted sliced lebanese bread.

To cook chickpeas.(organic Australian are best)
Soak the chickpeas overnight then drain off the soaking liquid
Add more water and simmer gently for about 1/2 an hour or until soft
Discard cooking liquid
Sprinkle with a little salt and olive oil
Use in dips, salads, vegetable dishes, curries, freeze to use later or sprinkle with chopped herbs or chilli powder and use as a snack.

Thursday, 6 September 2007


This is a moist yummy cake that is extremly easy to make

1 ½ cups each of: SR flour
Shredded coconut or ground nuts (almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts)
Caster sugar
Dried fruit*, in small pieces (mixed or one type)
Mix all ingredients together. Cook in greased ring tin in a moderate oven 45 minutes. Can also be made in muffin or small cake tins as well.

*Fresh fruit can also be used. Reduce amount of yogurt in juicy fruit or add an extra ½ cup of flour!.

I mainly use my frozen berries and add an extra 1/2 cup flour.