Thursday, October 29, 2009
The end result was a white or slightly yellowish cake with a strong pandan essence aroma. The after-taste of pandan essence in the mouth is what I dislike extremely so I'll be sure never to make this substitution again!
Fortunately, the cake turned out light, soft, fluffy and yet moist to the bite - which is actually a great success when it comes to baking a chiffon cake!
There are of course some who came here for the thermal spa resort or the wonderful sights of snow-capped mountains but I dare say most came solely to visit the Reber store - to get their hands on the great varieties of chocolates (especially the genuine Reber Mozart Kugeln®) or to enjoy a cup of coffee with freshly baked cake slices in different themed sections of the café, all richly decorated.
In Spring and Summer, an alternative location to be enjoying a cup of coffee would have to be in the great outdoor, at the Mozart garden. Sipping a freshly brewed coffee amidst the wonderful blooms with water trickling down the fountain and accompanied by bronze figurines of Mozart, Constance (Mozart's wife) and Miss Bimperl (their English terrier) is simply ahhhh....pure pleasure....
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Brauneck is a mountain located in Lenggries, within the state of Bavaria in Germany. The 4-seater gondola lift took us to an elevation of 1500m and from the gondola station, we had to trek for another 30 minutes before arriving at the hut.
The trek was relatively easy if not for the waist-deep snow and the heavy snowfall that made each step especially tedious. It was as if we were tiny beings being cast in a bowl of icing sugar or better still, in a water globe with swirling snow all around us!
However, once inside the dining hall of the hut, the temperature instantly went up by a few notches. Everywhere, people were taking off their thick winter jackets before settling comfortably on the wooden benches enjoy their beer. This went on till the wee hours and even after I retired for the night, the loud thumping musics could still be clearly heard through the thin wooden flooring.
But it's a birthday celebration anyway...so what the heck! :)
Friday, October 23, 2009
Been craving for this dish for the past couple of days. So I decided to search for the recipe online and to my dismay, there were not that many available and amongst those that I found, the recipes were quite alike but with very different quantity ratios for the ingredients to be used.
So for my first attempt, I opted for what I thought was the simplest recipe. And the result was.... disastrous! Apparently, there was too much water used in the recipe and even after cooling the steamed carrot cake overnight, it was still soft and soggy. So naturally when I tried to stubbornly fry it, the result was like mua-chee. :(
Afterwards, I even tried to 'debug' the error which I might have made during my first attempt - the wrong flour used? too much water? the wrong method? too short steaming duration?
And with whatever information and new findings I could gather, I ventured on to my second attempt. This time round, I chose a recipe which requires lesser water and the steamed carrot cake was standing on it's own after I sliced it! Bravo! However, the next step of frying it proved to be quite a challenge for me. The recipe stated that the wok must be very hot...and the fried carrot cake should be slightly browned on the outside. But as I stood frying the carrot cakes, all I got was the carrot cakes sticking to whichever side of the wok it was in contact with. And I ended up with a browned wok but white-as-snow carrot cakes. And the longer I fried it, the softer it became. So eventually, I scooped everything out and sprinkled a little chives on it before serving.
Well, it was definitely edible but it's like eating a big lump of porridge grain...probably more suitable for the toothless grannies.
Anyone out there who have a reliable, tried and tested recipe to share?
(+) Easy, fast and yummy!
(=) I would recommend using vanilla flavoured yoghurt instead of the plain yoghurt for that added vanilla fragrance!
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
At the ticketing counter, each visitor was issued with a 'starter' bag of chocolates and a nice ceramic chocolate tasting spoon which kind of sets me anticipating with excitement whether a similar "Charlie and The Chocolate Factory" scene will unfold before me. Then there was of course the red ribbon and wrist strap joke which I shan't elaborate further.
The entrance to the exhibition at the ground level was the 'boring' stuff - mainly huge posters explaining everything and probably anything about the grand history of chocolate.
The second level did not appear anymore exciting except for a white-bluish-purplish cow standing near the entrance of a room together with a milkmaid, each holding onto a basket full of Milka chocolates. Little did I know that the wonderland was really inside the room. The fragrance of chocolate wafting pass me when I entered the room, it's simply heavenly. Despite the size of the room, it didn't stop me sprinting from one display to the next with the tasting spoon in one hand and a chocolate-nicking gesture in my other hand.
One could have easily missed the small town if not for its distinctive late-Gothic church which stood out amongst the low-roofed houses surrounding it. The church is a well-known pilgrim site dating back to the 15th century.
While touring the church, I was told a real story about an attempt by the Turkish to bomb the church by filling three huge candles with explosive powders. The plan was for the explosives to be set off when the church service commences and the candles lighted. Fortunately, the bomb attack was uncovered, the lives of many saved, the historic church survived and the three candles still stood by the altar till this day.
The town was richly decorated with the colourful flowers of Summer - in the gardens of private houses, hanging down from balconies, outside restaurants, along the roadsides and even one giant book made up of pink and red flowers!
There was even a considerable-sized farmhouse located within the small town itself! And besides the farm animals, I could easily spot cats lazing throughout the town - under cars away from the direct sun glare, snoozing away on a bench outside a restaurant, catching mice in the vast green field... This bug is quite common here and in this case, I found one 'attached' to the other in a back-to-back position and being dragged all over the ground...interesting...
Food was certainly one of the highlight during the trip. Tante Helli made an amazing Chocolate Torte specially for us and I could dare say it rivals the famous Sacher Torte!
Dinner was a simply affair of baguettes with ham, cheese, egg, zucchini and paprika slices. It was so simple and yet delicious!
Life can be so simple...