It’s Time to Get Creative with Our Best Baking Ideas Yet!
With a lockdown that keeps on going, we all need a sweet treat – or two or three…
So, fasten your apron and put aside your stained sponge cake recipe because Camseng at home is coming to spice up your lockdown baking!
These baking recipes will get you salivating in no time. And did you know you can get baking ingredients online too? Just be sure to add them to your next Camseng order!
Sesame Seed Dessert Balls (Jian Dui)
One of the most popular desserts in China and Taiwan, these fried pastry balls are traditionally filled with red bean paste but can be filled with anything you like.
So, when you can’t make it to a Chinese bakery or a dim sum restaurant, you can make these irresistible treats at home. Here is an important cooking tip though: never use high temperature when frying or they will burst!
1-1½ litre oil (for deep frying)
120ml sesame seeds (or as needed)
180ml brown sugar
Approx. 250ml water (boiling)
720ml glutinous rice flour
240ml red bean paste (all may not be needed)
1. In a wok or deep-sided, heavy saucepan, preheat the oil for deep-frying to 120C. Make sure that there is at least 3 inches of oil in the wok.
2. Spread the sesame seeds over a piece of baking paper. Place a small bowl of water beside the sesame seeds.
3. Dissolve the brown sugar in nearly all of the boiling water.
4. Place the rice flour in a large bowl. Make a well in the middle of the bowl and add the dissolved sugar and water mixture. Stir until you have a sticky, caramel-coloured dough, adding as much of the remaining boiling water as needed (don't add the water if not needed).
5. Pinch off a piece of dough roughly the size of a golf ball. Use your thumb to make a deep indentation in the dough and then your thumb and index fingers of both hands to form the dough into a cup.
6. Roll 1 level teaspoon of sweet red bean paste into a ball. Place the red bean paste in the hole, and shape the dough over the top to seal. Make sure the red bean paste is completely covered. Continue with the remainder of the dough.
7. Dip a ball into the small bowl of water (this will help the sesame seeds stick to the ball).
8. Roll the ball over the sesame seeds. Repeat the process with the remainder of the balls.
9. Deep-fry the sesame seed balls, a few at a time, in the hot oil.
10. Once the sesame seeds turn light brown (about 2 mins), use the back of a spatula to gently press the balls against the side of the wok or saucepan. Continue applying pressure as the balls turn golden brown and expand to about 3 times their normal size.
11. Drain the deep-fried sesame seed balls on paper towels.
12. Serve warm and enjoy!
Peda is a popular sweet treat hailing from India that is commonly made for festivals and celebrations.
This slightly different Milk Peda baking recipe is quick to prepare and so satisfying to eat!
1 tin condensed milk (397g)
120ml whole milk
120ml milk powder
1 ½ tsp cornflour
1 ½ tbsp ghee
2 tsp lime juice
Pistachios (to decorate)
1. Mix the condensed milk with the whole milk.
2. Add 2/3 of the milk powder, cornflour, ghee and lime.
3. Pour the mixture into a pan, cooking over medium heat. Stir until the mixture thickens and leaves the sides of the pan. Remove from heat and cool for 10 minutes.
4. Slowly, add the rest of the milk powder, mixing well. The mixture should be soft and pliable.
5. Shape into rounded balls, pressing lightly in the middle to leave a thumb-sized indentation.
6. Decorate with chopped pistachios.
Chinese Five Spice Chocolate Cake
This one is for chocolate lovers! A combination of flavours from around the world with a more unusual use for Chinese Five Spice. This cake balances spice with chocolate for a unique and flavourful bite.
240ml all-purpose flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
2 tsp Chinese Five Spice
180ml bittersweet chocolate (finely chopped or grated)
60ml brewed coffee
1 tsp vanilla extract
For the Ganache:
240ml heavy cream
300g chocolate chips
Chocolate sprinkles (to decorate)
1. Preheat the oven to 180 C. Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt, Five Spice and baking soda in a bowl.
2. In another bowl, mix the hot coffee and diced chocolate, stirring vigorously until the chocolate has melted.
3. Add vanilla and buttermilk to the mixture, blending well. Set aside.
4. In a large bowl, beat the egg and sugar until light and airy.
5. Add the chocolate mixture and mix well. Then, add the flour mixture and stir until fully mixed.
6. Pour mixture into two greased cake tins and place in the oven for about 30 minutes or until ready.
7. Allow the cakes to cool, remove from tin and leave to cool for another hour.
8. Prepare the ganache: heat the cream in a pan to boiling. Pour the chocolate chips in and leave to sit for 4-5min (without stirring!). Then, whisk the mixture until it thickens.
9. Pour a small amount of ganache over the top of one layer of cake, and top with the other layer of cake. When the ganache has cooled enough to be a thick spread, coat the cake with the ganache. Top with chocolate sprinkles.
10. Chill for two hours and serve!
What are your favourite sweet treats? Share a picture of your lockdown baking (or a delicious Asian baking recipe) and tag @camsengathome on Instagram!