Sunday, April 15, 2018

Sourdough Rye Bread 裸麥包



It is amazing how four simple ingredients--flour, water, yeast and salt (plus time and patience)--can produce such a nutritious and flavorful food that human beings have consumed since thousands of years ago.

This is my first time using rye to make bread. Rye is very different from wheat. Although rye flour has similar gluten producing proteins, there is virtually no gluten formation. It has more bran, mineral, fiber, soluble sugars, pentosans, and amylase enzymes than wheat flour. All these differences make baking with rye a bit challenging. In particular, amylase will cause the bread crumb to have more of a gummy texture in a process called "starch attack" (I am not going to go into details here. For more information, read Hamelman's book, Bread, p40-42)



However, bakers have an weapon to counter this "attack": sourdough starter. The acidity of the starter can keep the amylase enzyme under control. Other benefits of using sourdough culture are increased nutritional value and longer shelf life.

References: Bread by Jeffrey Hamelman; Breaking Bread by Martin Philip.





a healthy looking sourdough starter with lots of bubbles

Ingredients to make one 8" boule

Day 1: make rye sourdough

146g whole rye flour
117g water, lukewarm (75-80F)
30g sourdough culture (click here for my recipe on making sourdough culture)

Mix well, cover and leave at room temperature overnight (12-16 hours):
rye sourdough culture
Day 2
all of the rye sourdough from day 1
176g water, lukewarm (80-90F)
125g all purpose flour
96g whole rye flour
7g salt
3g yeast
100g toasted walnuts, optional

1) Mix rye sourdough with water by hands until it loosens up.
2) Add both flours, the yeast, and walnuts. Mix well, then add salt. Mix until all the ingredients are well combined. No need to knead.
3) Cover and leave at room temperature for 30 mins.
4) Fold and leave for another 30 mins. The dough will feel like clay, not as elastic as regular wheat flour dough.
5) Shape the dough into a boule. Place on a piece of parchment paper big enough to put inside your cast iron/Dutch oven.


6) Cover and proof for 30 mins. Put the cast iron pot and its lid into the oven while it preheats to 450F.
7) Transfer the dough with the help of the parchment paper to the hot cast iron pot. Cover with the lid and bake for 25 mins. Remove the lid and bake for another 10-15 minutes.


Note: rye bread does not benefit from long fermentation. It only takes about 3 hours in day 2 from mixing to finish baking. Please follow the time specified in the steps above.




Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Oatmeal Bread (No Knead Method) 燕麥麵包(免揉)



"Most bread produced in factory bakeries in the industrialized world is made without the critical step of fermentation.....Dough conditioners, flavorings, processing aids, gums, fats and additives are used in an attempt to save one precious thing, TIME....They mix, shape, and bake a loaf in less than an hour. A baker using traditional methods and actual fermentation may take up to 72 hours."  by Martin Philip, head baker of King Arthur Flour, "Breaking Bread" (emphasis added).

Yes, fermentation is nature's gift to humans. From cheese, wine, kimchi, soy sauce, and chocolate to bread making, the list can go on and on. No matter where and what kind of culture, fermentation is a critical and beneficial food making process. It takes time for all the microbes--yeasts, bacteria, etc.-- to break down the raw ingredients (milk, grape, napa, soybeans, flour, cocoa bean) to a more digestible and tasty final product (cheese, wine, kimchi, soy sauce, bread, chocolate).

I have tried different recipes for making oatmeal bread and this is by far the most satisfying. Other recipes give a very wet dough and in turn yield a heavy and dense bread. This one has the right texture and is very flavorful. It uses honey and vegetable oil instead of sugar and butter. For a completely dairy free version, substitute milk with water.

No stand mixer? No problem. Tired of kneading with your hands? No problem. Follow the steps below to make an easy and yet nutritious and tasty bread.



Ingredients to make one 9x5 loaf:

Oat Soaker:
70g oats, thick rolled or old-fashioned
135g water
48g milk
33g honey
33g vegetable oil

Mix all of the above in a bowl and let it soak for at least 2 hours, up to 16 hours or overnight, at room temperature.



Main Dough:
all the oat soaker
324g all-purpose flour
108g whole wheat flour
9g salt
4g instant yeast
135g water, lukewarm

1) In a large mixing bowl, combine the oat soaker, flours, yeast, and water.
2) Add salt and mix until there is no dry flour in the bowl. No kneading is necessary. Cover with plastic wrap and you will have a rough dough.
3) Fold and stretch the dough as pictured every 20 minutes, for a total of 3 folds over an hour.

spread out the dough to a rectangle

fold the short side towards the middle

fold the other side and overlap the first fold
4) Leave it alone to ferment at room temperature (70-75F) for another hour.
4) Preshape the dough and let it rest for 15 minutes.
5) Spray a 9x5 loaf pan with oil.
6) Shape the dough so that it is the same length as the pan you're using. Moisten the surface of the dough by spraying it with a little water. Roll some oats on top to make the crust. Place onto the loaf pan, seam side down, oats side up. Cover and let it rise again for 50-60 minutes.



7) Preheat oven to 425F. Bake for 35-40 minutes.

Recipe modified from Breaking Bread by Martin Philip, Head baker of King Arthur Flour.

Note: I usually put 2 tbsp chia seed or flaxseed (ground or whole is fine) to the dough for added nutrition.





Thursday, February 22, 2018

Crispy Fish Skin with Salted Egg Yolk 香脆金沙魚皮


If you follow my blog, you would notice that I like snacks, appetizers or small bites food a lot. This is another good one that is very popular in Asia. It is not difficult nor complicated to make if you could get fried fish skin from local restaurant or store.


Ingredients:

90g Fried fish skin, store bought or homemade 炸魚皮
4 salted egg yolk 咸蛋黃
5g lemon leaves 檸檬葉
35g butter 牛油
½ tsp curry powder 咖喱粉
⅓ tsp sugar 糖
⅓ tsp salt 鹽
seven-spice powder, optional 七味粉

Recipe credit: Jacky Yu

1) Thinly slice lemon leaves. Set aside.
2) Steam salted egg yolk for 5 minutes. Mesh with a fork. Set aside.
3) In a saucepan with medium heat, melt butter. Add lemon leaves and cook for a minute.
4) Add egg yolk, curry powder, sugar and salt.
5) Add the fish skin and stir until it is evenly coated. Remove from heat.
6) Sprinkle seven-spice powder on top. Serve in room temp.










Saturday, February 3, 2018

Updated Library Cooking Programs 免費烹飪項目




Your tax dollars at work! Increased funding=more free programs. Check out my updated list of 19 cooking programs in the first half of the year:

Phoebe Chow (morethanbread.net)
2018 Library Cooking Program Lineup
For more details, visit: http://www.colapublib.org/calendar/
Or morethanbread.net

Date and Time
Library
Program
1/13/18 Saturday 10:30 am
West Hollywood
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Egg Waffle雞蛋仔
1/27/18 Saturday 3 pm
Florence
Gold Fish Nian Gao錦鯉年糕
1/29/18 Monday 5pm
Los Nietos
Street Foods of Hong Kong: Egg Waffle, Curry Fish Balls
雞蛋仔、咖喱魚蛋
1/31/18 Wednesday 6 pm
Rivera
Gold Fish Nian Gao
錦鯉年糕
2/3/18 Saturday 2 pm
Lennox
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Vegetarian Lo Mei, Banana roll
齋鹵味、香蕉糕
2/10/18 Saturday
3 pm
San Dimas
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Egg Waffle, Pork Jerky
雞蛋仔、豬肉乾
2/17/18 Saturday
2 pm
La Canada Flintridge
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun
叉燒、菠蘿包
2/24/18 Saturday
2 pm
Clifton M. Brakensiek
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun
叉燒、菠蘿包
3/17/18 Saturday
2 pm
Angelo M. Iacoboni
BBQ Pork, Egg Waffle
叉燒、雞蛋仔
3/24/18 Saturday
1 pm
Anthony Quinn
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun, Milk Tea
叉燒、菠蘿包、絲襪奶茶
4/7/18 Saturday
3 pm
Hermosa Beach
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Vegetarian Lo Mei, Steamed rice cake
齋鹵味、缽仔糕
4/21/18 Saturday
2 pm
Huntington Park
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Egg Waffle雞蛋仔
4/28/18 Saturday
1 pm
E. Rancho Dominguez
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Egg Waffle 雞蛋仔
5/19/18 Saturday
2 pm
El Camino Real
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun, Milk Tea
叉燒、菠蘿包、絲襪奶茶
5/21/18 Monday
6 pm
Pico Rivera
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Egg Waffle 雞蛋仔
5/26/18 Saturday
2 pm
Graham
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun
叉燒、菠蘿包
6/2/18 Saturday
2 pm
Maywood
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun
叉燒、菠蘿包
6/9/18 Saturday
2 pm
Cudahy
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Vegetarian Lo Mei, Banana roll, Tofu
Pudding
齋鹵味、香蕉糕、豆腐花
6/16/18 Saturday
1 pm
Lawndale
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Vegetarian Lo Mei, Steamed rice cake
齋鹵味、缽仔糕
6/23/18 Saturday
1 pm
Norwalk
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun
叉燒、菠蘿包




Monday, January 15, 2018

Sous Vide Rib Eye Steak 真空低溫牛扒


I am a believer after trying this sous vide method to cook steak. It is never overcooked and dry, I think this is the best way to cook an expensive cut of meat. Although it may take more time to do it, your patience will be greatly rewarded. The active working time is so minimal that I can literally walk away after setting it up.

Sous vide is not new (French meaning "under vacuum"). It has been a well-known French cooking method for hundreds of years. By submerging food that has been vacuum packed in a constant temperature over time, no moisture is lost and the whole piece of meat/food is consistently cooked to perfection.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Hong Kong Style Milk Tea 絲襪奶茶



I am a tea drinker. A cup of tea in the morning, to me, is the same as coffee for other people. It really wakes me up and gets me ready for my day!
I grew up in Hong Kong, where this kind of milk tea originated. I love milk tea for its rich aroma and creamy smoothness. I have been using tea bags and three-in-one "tea". But nothing compares to a cup of freshly brewed Ceylon milk tea.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

2018 Library Cooking Demonstration


Next year marks my seventh year of doing cooking program in Los Angeles County Libraries since 2012. Throughout the years, I have been invited to 36 different libraries in the greater LA area. Some libraries have invited me multiple times. Total attendance is over 2500!

轉眼2018已是我在圖書館教授烹飪的第七個年頭了,這短短幾年我被三十六間不同的圖書館邀請,參觀人數超過二千五百名!


If you live in the area and would like to attend, check out the schedule below. For more information, visit LA county library, search under "events". The list will be updated as I get more invitations for the year.

下面是我今年的行程,請到洛縣圖書館網站 瀏覽更詳細資料如各圖書館地址、時間等。


Date and Time
Library
Program
1/13/18 Saturday 
10:30 am
West Hollywood
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Egg Waffle雞蛋仔
1/27/18 Saturday 3 pm
Florence
Gold Fish Nian Gao錦鯉年糕
1/29/18 Monday 5pm
Los Nietos
Street Foods of Hong Kong: Egg Waffle, 
Curry Fish Balls
雞蛋仔、咖喱魚蛋
1/31/18 Wednesday 6 pm
Rivera
Gold Fish Nian Gao
錦鯉年糕
2/3/18 Saturday 2 pm
Lennox
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Vegetarian Lo Mei, Banana roll
齋鹵味、香蕉糕
2/10/18 Saturday
3 pm
San Dimas
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Egg Waffle, Pork Jerky
雞蛋仔、豬肉乾
2/17/18 Saturday
2 pm
La Canada Flintridge
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun
叉燒、菠蘿包
2/24/18 Saturday
2 pm
Clifton M. Brakensiek
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun
叉燒、菠蘿包
3/17/18 Saturday
2 pm
Angelo M. Iacoboni
BBQ Pork, Egg Waffle
叉燒、雞蛋仔
3/24/18 Saturday
1 pm
Anthony Quinn
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun, Milk Tea
叉燒、菠蘿包、絲襪奶茶
4/7/18 Saturday
3 pm
Hermosa Beach
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Vegetarian Lo Mei, Steamed rice cake
齋鹵味、缽仔糕
4/21/18 Saturday
2 pm
Huntington Park
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Egg Waffle雞蛋仔
4/28/18 Saturday
1 pm
E. Rancho Dominguez
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Egg Waffle 雞蛋仔
5/19/18 Saturday
2 pm
El Camino Real
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun, Milk Tea
叉燒、菠蘿包、絲襪奶茶
5/21/18 Monday
6 pm
Pico Rivera
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Egg Waffle 雞蛋仔
5/26/18 Saturday
2 pm
Graham
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun
叉燒、菠蘿包
6/9/18 Saturday
2 pm
Cudahy
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Vegetarian Lo Mei, Banana roll, Tofu
Pudding
齋鹵味、香蕉糕、豆腐花
6/16/18 Saturday
1 pm
Lawndale
Street Foods of Hong Kong:
Vegetarian Lo Mei, Steamed rice cake
齋鹵味、缽仔糕
6/23/18 Saturday
1 pm
Norwalk
BBQ Pork, Pineapple Bun
叉燒、菠蘿包














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