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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Crouching Tiger Hidden Bacon! – Inspired Bacon Bread w/ Black Pepper!

I decided to bake bread again today. I don't know why, just felt like it.

I decided to make bread and incorporate bacon in it.

So i took the recipe i used for the fluffy dinner rolls and changed it up a little.


What i did different this time:

1. Instead of making 14 balls about 54g each as i did to make simple dinner rolls, i made them into approximately 100g portions, so i got 7 buns.

2. After portioning them out and rolling them into balls, i rolled them out into a long oval shape.

3. On the oval piece of dough, i sprinkled some freshly grounded black pepper and then place a piece of bacon on it. I removed the rind and excess fat on the bacon. The rind would not be able to crisp up and would be tough and chewy if i had left it in. Slicing off excess fat also meant that if you should eat the bread cold, the fat doesn't become chewy, cloying and off-putting.

4. After i layered the black pepper, bacon and more black pepper, i rolled it up, from one end of the oval to the other. Press the seam down to seal and place the seal side down on the baking paper, this ensures that the seam does not pop open during the dough's rising and baking process.

5. Instead of buttering the tops of the dough, i used an egg with 2 tsp of water mixed together and brushed it on instead. Milk with the egg or just milk would work as well. I think both the egg and milk imparts fragrance and a slightly sweet flavour as opposed to the butter.

6. I did accidentally use more butter than the recipe called for, but it seems like it turned out well.

7. I tried to measure the amount of flour i used this time. In addition to the additional 3/4 + 1/2 cup of flour. I think i used an extra 1 1/2 cups. The dough i realized, is quite forgiving. With 1 cup of additional flour, it already came together very well in the mixer and wasn't sticking. When i transferred it to be kneaded by hand, it didn't stick to my hand as well, but there was just a slight sticky feel to the dough, so i added another 1/2 cup of flour gradually. But i should suppose that it would be fine if i had not added that extra 1/2 as the dough was already quite elastic and soft.


I think the bread turned out great! Just 2 things i might do differently in the future:

1. Give the bacon a slight wash and dry. Although i felt that it was ok, fish felt that there was something about the flavour of the bread nearest to the bacon. I couldn't think of what it might be and hui didn't mention anything about it, but i think next time i would wash the bacon to get rid of the slight slimy layer on the bacon.

2. Add cheese! I think this would work well with a layer of cheese and it would make a very nutritiously balanced bread (i think). And i might change it to ham next time as well. Some good quality ham from a good butcher.


3. Oh and.. these bread really do expand, so i might not squeeze all the bread into one tray next time. Although the flavour wasn't affected and they do tear away nicely.

And i realized that the expiration date on the bottle of yeast isn't accurate. I just realized that mine expired March 2010. and i'm still using it right now and it rises perfectly! I store mine in the fridge. but if you're ever not sure, be sure to just test it to make sure it foams. We don't want any disappointment now.. do we?

Please try it! and let me know how you go with it!

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Fluffy Dinner Rolls!

Yum! This dinner roll recipe is from Betty's Kitchen on youtube.

This makes an amazing dinner roll! You have to try it!

I used my KitchenAid to make this but you can definitely make it by hand.



2 ¾ to 3 ¼ cups all-purpose flour (I'm actually not sure how much flour i used at the end)
¼ cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 package (2 ¼ tbsp) active dry yeast
70g butter, softened
2/3 cup warm milk
1 egg (at room temperature)
melted butter, enough to brush tops of rolls


In your mixer bowl, add in and mix well 3/4 cup flour, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 2 1/4 tbsp of yeast.

Add in the softened butter.

After this, gradually add in the warm milk and beat for around 2 minutes or till thoroughly mixed.

Add in the egg and 1/2 cup of flour and mix till it's a thick batter.

Slowly add in more flour while beating it continuously with a dough hook.  

Beat it till it forms a smooth and elastic dough.

**This is actually why i don't know how much flour i used eventually because i just kept adding till i felt it was the right consistency. I stopped when the dough stuck slightly to the bottom of the bowl while beating.

**I also don't only knead using the KitchenAid, i always finish it by hand to ensure that i reach the right feeling of the dough. This comes with experience but it is definitely doable. In Chinese cooking books, you knead till you attain 3 types of brightness: your hand, the table/bowl that you are kneading in and the dough itself. What this means is that the dough is no longer sticky, so your hands and table/bowl is clean and in a way, shiny. Your dough should also be smooth and elastic, not sticky.

After kneading, place the bowl in a greased bowl and cover with cling film to rise in a warm place for 1 hour. (Since i always bake at night and it's not very warm here, i preheat my oven for around 5 minutes to get it slightly warm then switch it off and leave the bowl in there to rise.)

After rising and doubling in size, i divided the dough into 14 portions.
*I measured the dough so that i could get equal portions. Each piece of dough was around 54g, but that would differ according to your individual dough.

With each of the portions, roll them into a nice smooth ball.

Place on a baking tray lined with baking paper and place them about 2cm apart to give them space to rise.

Cover with cling film and leave to rise for another hour.


Taking melted butter, brush the tops of the dough. I also sprinkled a bit of coarse salt on the tops to give it a little salty burst.

Bake in a 200 degree oven for 10-15 minutes until the tops are a nice brown colour.


Enjoy them warm with more butter!



P.S. The funny shape of the insides of the dough is because of the way i rolled them into balls. But they still taste amazing!! Smile

Thanks Betty!

Monday, January 02, 2012

Easy Drink! – Sprite w/ Lingonberry Jam

We bought a bottle of lingonberry jam from Ikea a while back and have not used it very often since. but i do love lingonberry, so i had a sudden inspiration to try this out one day and i love it!


Just take a glass of sprite or lemonade and add as much or as little jam into the drink.

Using a straw, stir and get the jam mixed well.

You have to drink this with a straw to suck up the little berries at the bottom!

Yum yum yum. i love drinking this as opposed to plain sprite or lemonade.

Try it one day! It is this simple to jazz up a drink!

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Yalla's Prune and Vanilla Yogurt!

I don't usually like to eat yogurt, but i found this little treasure at the Eveleigh's Markets @ Redfern.


(Picture taken from

This is so good and creamy and delicious!

The prunes add an unexpected flavour which is not at all common and the prunes are a generous amount, not a puny sized topping.

I really love their dips as well as their yogurts and i will be so upset when i return to Singapore and not get to eat this anymore. Sad smile

So i'll just be getting myself some and eating away while i'm still here. 14 days to go.

I hope they will be considering expanding their business overseas though.

I just finished a small tub of this and i still have a big tub of vanilla yogurt to enjoy.

But just letting you guys know that this is an amazing product and grab it when you see it, cause it's awesome.