Friday, March 18, 2011

Coffee Mousse for the staff @ COS

Since the beginning of another physio sessions for my knee two weeks ago, I have been bringing in at least a cake per week to let the staff try.. and of course to make myself practice! 

This mousse cake was inspired by one of the desserts that was made by a senpai at the hotel I trained at before - he made a cheesecake that uses the alcohol in a cocktail called B52 (Grand Marnier, Irish Cream and Kahlua). It was amazing! And here, this coffee mousse is a reflection of a cup a coffee (it's simple I know, but it's a start!).

The original recipe that I put together consisted of 3 elements: chocolate cake, coffee mousse and mascarpone mousse. Fairly basic components that complements one another perfectly when the right proportion is applied. Other supplement elements, such as walnut praline and chocolate ganache, were soon added to see if it will help enhance the overall experience of eating the cake. It was really down to trial and error whenever something new pops up in my head. Even the appearance has been tweaked several times and it is still changing! 

This time, I was thoroughly informed by my physiotherapist that his wife can't take chocolate (even though she is a chocoholic) because it causes her to have severe headaches that is painful beyond imagination. He warned me that if I were to bring in a cake that contains chocolate in it while she is around, she will cause pain that is equal to her headache.. (I was quite sure he was joking.. I think =.="). 

Therefore chocolate is out of the equation, so the chocolate cake base was substitute with a coffee genoise instead. The walnut praline in chocolate ganache was scraped, and since this component was scraped, the crunchiness was missing as well.. It did take me a while to think up an immediate solution with the ingredients that I have had at hand. Looking around the kitchen.. sesame seeds.. sliced almonds.. whole almonds.. leftover cake slices.. tart dou.. wait a minute! CAKE CRUMBS! That's it! Diced them up and make them into crumbs! (I've no idea how that came to mind but to linked it with my previous job experience were I had to make breadcrumbs for soups.. lol) I have to say, they make great decorative pieces and what a way to use up some leftover slices of cake! 

The coffee genoise wraps around the coffee mousse like a charlotte and the marcarpone mousse sits gently on top, decorated with a coffee pastry cream filled macaron and coffee cinnamon cake crumbs. Another great version of this coffee cake (^-^) 

The most satisfying moment was of course watching TH, his wife and colleagues dig into the cake with joy and satisfaction. That alone was more than enough to lift up my weekend ahead and made my sore leg (due to TH's torturing regime :P) seems not so sore anymore.

Saturday, March 12, 2011


Since the starting of all this cooking business.. I have always fancied the design side of things, wanting to decorate food like the masters out there. Nearly every moment that I am not thinking about something else, my mind sets off into musing about the next cake/pastry design and combination that I can experiment with.

Here is a strawberry mousse chocolate tart that I made the other day.. the flavour of the strawberry mousse was just too weak, and was overwhelmed by the rich chocolate tart. I loved the idea of lining the strawberries like that, but I found it a bit difficult to cut after.. The strawberry mousse was done separately and placed on top of the tart after it was set - this results in the mousse not being stuck to the tart and easy drops when it is cut into slices. Definitely need to work on that..

Overall, the decor worked nicely but the flavour profile still needs a lot of work. Hm.. will need to get better strawberries next time as well!

Mommy's Sweet Tooth

Mom was craving for something sweet, so I whipped this up for her ^o^ Something that I haven't made in awhile since Christmas.. 

She gets the piece topped with strawberry of course! 

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Finally a new post!

Yes.. I've finally clicked on my blog link and decided to blog again after months of procrastination! The blog has collected enough dust for the past four months or so - it does take some efforts to keep a blog neat and tidy, I realised.

My dad had encouraged me countless times to keep an up-to-date entry of my culinary life on the blog, like a diary. No matter the article being big or small, it is still an entry and a reminder of what happened in ones life. 

"Don't try! Just do it! Don't worry if it is just a short paragraph.. it is still an update!"

And.. he is right. Again. Just like many other things he and mom had said and taught me in the past. I love them both.. this post will be dedicated to them for their unwavering support towards my decision to be a chef. 

Words just can't explain how much this means to me.. I guess I will just have to do that with my food ;-) Thanks mom & dad!