tea Tag

CRISPY YEASTED AND EXTRA “MALTY” WAFFLES

WITHOUT GOING ALL “DIASTATIC” ON MYSELF, I CAN SIMPLY TURN TO AN ASIAN HOME-ESSENTIAL THAT COULD ADD THE EXTRA “MALTINESS” TO ALL BAKED GOODS

The brass spoon is made by the amazing Ann Ladson.

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In between the various degrees of educations throughout my life, formal or social, if you asked me, I’d probably say that I expected the least practical return from my continuous study in all of Disney’s animated movies around the 90’s.  More specifically, the cartoons, the classics, starting somewhere with The Little Mermaid and ending abruptly with Tarzan.  All the magic produced at the height of Disney’s prime according to my verdict, before digital animations barged in and all of a sudden, for no reason at all, everybody and so did the magic, literally or figuratively, all just stopped singing.  Call me nostalgic, or even outdated, I rekindle with those movies from time to time, almost needfully, like talking to a childhood friend who never grew old.  As far as I’m concerned, they don’t make shit like that anymore.  But anyhow, my point is, as much as I treasure the purity and endurance of this relationship that has regretfully outlasted many, little did I think, that it was gonna bring me the bacon.  In fact, more than bacon, a couple weeks ago, it brought me a hunk of 30-days dry-aged wagyu bone-in rib eye.

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almond shortbread sandwich w jasmine tea icing

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(IT WOULDN’T KILL) ME TO SWAP 1/2 OF THE CHOCOLATE WITH PEANUT BUTTER.  SO INSTEAD, IT KILLED THE BROWNIES

HERE’S the thing.  I am not particularly built for baking.

I know this sounds like false modesty… unappetisingly pretentious, especially after a consistent offering of bakery recipes in the past 2.5 years, ranging from simpler things like an imploding honey custard cake or blueberry muffin-french toasts, to more elaborate things like a gateau a la sour cream or a laminated Nutella morning bun.  Sorry if I forgot to mention my relentless pursuit of everything-biscuits, and right, you’re absolutely right, this deep-fried apple/persimmon pies, despite of myself, were eeeeeeh-pic~~

Uh-hem, ok now seriously though, truth aside (….), that when it comes to baking, I struggle with a high precipitation of unnatural disasters with only a slight chance of prevalence.  Not to mention that either ways, the day will only end sadly in tears, or, happily in fat thighs.  Baking, is a no-win situation.

But let’s just say, we don’t have problems with fat thighs.  Just saying… then why the struggle?  Well… I was born, with a medical birth defect, which disallows me to follow recipes… precisely.  There.  It’s a chemical imbalance in my brain creating an illusion that makes me believe I am, at the very least, marginally smarter than a cookie-dough.  Turns out… I am not.  No one is.  But this condition has grown resistant even to such keen awareness, to a point that… I can’t even follow my own recipes!  At this very moment as we speak, a batch of brownie lies mutilated on a white sheet of parchment, recipe of which was tested, then tested, and thus theoretically foolproofed for people like myself, who’s really good at fucking up a recipe… yet I still did.  Would it have killed me to swap 1/2 of the chocolate with peanut butter?  No, no it wouldn’t at all.  So instead, it killed the brownies.  Certainly not the only dead thing here…  A runny banana bread batter – not a pie-filling makes.  Ricotta pastry cream – yikes.

I’m bringing this up at a very carefully timed juncture, a serene and orderly period right before the tsunami of holiday-pastry-season hits, so I have enough chance to reflect and ponder on my illness.  Who am I but a good-hearted amateur baker – guided by presumed logics, set out to make the recipe-world more interesting, if not tastier – only to be haunted by unintended consequences.  A walking cautionary tale marked with a bloody scarlet A-for-effort, and the stain of broken whipped cream.  But if to tackle this illness fundamentally, means to obey a recipe unquestionably, then what is my trickling value in recipe-blogosphere without adding personal inputs?

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THE HOT TRIPLETS

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I’m shouting out to you in the middle of the Pacific Ocean!! Warm waves… creamy white sands… waving palm trees… oh wait oops, are you cold there? Don’t say I’m not nice. Here, drink this, what I call the hot triplets. Oh, and it goes with this, the sweet buttah sandwich. Both are mutations from my favorites of Hong Kong’s popular “tea room” culture. Maybe I’ll chat more about it when I get back but right now, I have more important things to get to… See ya!

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