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Light Rye Sourdough

posted Mar 3, 2022, 2:55 AM by Jenny Loh

20% Stiff Starter (50% hydration) 
270g Bread Flour
30g German Rye
6% Salt
75% water

Seeds - 40g - Chia seed, flax meal, black sesame. 

Flour, water, starter mix for a few minutes, set aside for 1/2 hour
I used Panasonic bread maker to mix this, using the dumpling mix mode. 15 mins of mixing
Stretch and fold 2 x over 2 hours.  
I left this in the fridge for 24 hours, more for convenience due to work.

Took it out and left to bring it to room temperature for 1 hour.
Shape, and left to proof for another 24 hours before baking.

Heat oven to 275C with cast iron pot lid on.

After 1 hour,  score dough, slid into the pot, throw some ice cover quickly.  

Bake 30 min at 250C covered, and 230C for 10 min uncovered.

I like to leave the loaf alone for a couple of hours before cutting,  as leaving it to cool on its own is important. 

And making it into a delicious breakfast is the next best thing about making own bread.

Mulberry Sourdough

posted Nov 13, 2016, 6:41 AM by Jenny Loh   [ updated Nov 15, 2016, 5:37 PM ]

After last week's success of my sourdough, I just wanted to make another one again.  The trick is the sourdough.  Refreshed 2 times 12 hours each before using on the main dough.  It bloomed so well! 

50g starter
120g water
120g bread flour

After 12 hours, rough  mix starter, water, flour, autolyse for 30 mins.

Main dough
295g starter
400g bread flour
100g rye flour
350g water
35g olive oil
50g instant oat
10g salt
40g dried mulberry
20g sunflower seeds
10g sunflower seeds
10g pine seeds 
a pinch of nutmeg

Mixed at speed of 1 on Kenwood mixer for 15 mins. Add nuts and mulberry in the last 2 mins.

Put into box. Stretch and fold 3 times every hour. This is important as it strengthens the dough well.   Leave to bulk rise 3 hours.

Split into 3 

Heat oven till 250 degree.  Load into oven, add boiling water to hot stones in oven. First 15 mins it will bloom.  Open the door a little to release some steam.  Turn down to 200 degrees and bake for another 15 mins. Last 7 mins open the oven to release all the steam. This will make sure that the crust is thin. 

This bread turns out surprisingly soft even though it's packed with lots of ingredients.  I'm pretty happy with this.  

Light Rye Herb Sourdough with Flaxseed and white Sesame

posted Nov 6, 2016, 4:44 AM by Jenny Loh

After many months of not getting the right texture for sourdough, I was almost giving up.  I didn't. 

Refreshed my sourdough on Saturday morning, 100% hydration, it looks bubbly enough, after 12 hours.  

50g starter
100g water
100g flout

200g sourdough
400g bread flour
100g light rye
350g water
20g olive oil
10g salt
2g dried herbs - parsley, thyme, basil
15g white sesame
15g flaxseed

Autolyse for 30 mins.  Then add oil, salt. Mix in Kenwood level 1 for 20 mins, add herbs and seeds, mix at min until all blended. 

Put into container, fold once.

Every 1 hour fold, for 3 x.

Bulk rise 3 hours.  Remove, cut and let rest 10mins.  Shape and put in banetton for 1.5 hrs. 

Oven at 250 degrees for 15 mins with water.  Release steam after 15 mins, being temperature down to 210 degrees.  Last 5 mins, release steam.  By doing this, the crust doesn't get too thick.  

The loaf was flavourful, soft, and open crumbs.  

Love it! 

Orange Ricotta Cinnamon Roll

posted Nov 6, 2016, 4:10 AM by Jenny Loh   [ updated Nov 6, 2016, 4:31 AM ]

We were walking along Yuyan Lu in Shanghai and came across a shop named Cinnamon Swirl.  It sells cinnamon  rolls  There's a long queue waiting to buy it.  Freshly rolled and baked, served with cream, chocolate or peanut butter.  Looks yummy. 

My husband says why don't you make it.  I'm like I made before but you don't eat them.  He said I will, well just one.  

Ok, I've don't cinnamon roll but I find most recipes end up having a hard bread after it cools down.  I recalled I have some ricotta left, and ricotta cheese tends to make breads soft due to its high fat content.  And ricotta with orange, that seems like an attractive combination. So here I am experimenting as I go along.  

250g bread flour
80g ricotta 
40g orange juice
130g water
1tsp salt
1tsp instant yeast
Lemon zest

Add these ingredients after 1st rise. 
Cinnamon powder

Using my Panasonic SD104 bread mixing mode, so easy, threw all the ingredients in and 
1 hr later,, it's risen nicely.  I took it out, fold and let rest.  

Using my rolling pin,  flatten it and roll out into rectangular shape.  Sprinkle cinnamon and sugar. And I used orange sugar,  without measuring, just sprinkle enough to cover the whole surface.  Roll up, and sealed the ends. Using s rectangular pan,  I decided to have  9 pieces, cos it fits nicely into my pan.  

Let rise 1 hr.  Sprinkle a little of cinnamon on top. 
Bake at 190 degree for 15 mins.  The roll as expected, turns out really soft, with a tangy taste.  I think I just found a great way to make cinnamon rolls. 

New York Cheesecake as Birthday Cake for My 16th Year Old Boy

posted Nov 1, 2015, 1:41 AM by Jenny Loh   [ updated Nov 1, 2015, 1:47 AM ]

My son celebrated his 16th year old birthday on 20 October this year. This year seems just so normal.  I usually plan way ahead what kind of cakes that I'd make,  design it on my little note book, and usually its by layers.  I asked him what cake do you want.  He said cheese cake. Ok,  he didn't specify what cheese cake.  So,  I was planning a black forest for the base,  no bake cheese cake 2nd layer,  chocolate mousse 3rd layer.  So,  its sounds delicious.  This cake will probably take me 3 days to get it done.

On the weekend just before his birthday,  I asked him again, just to make sure,  that I'm baking something that he wants - what kind of cheese cake.  He said New York Cheesecake and I almost fainted.  I researched and found this recipe -    Seems pretty good.   The ingredients that I bought,  the way its to be done, totally way off from what I planned.  So,  I went to buy a few things:

1 pack of Graham biscuits (can't find graham,  decided to use digestive biscuits)
4 packs of Philadelphia cheese
1 box of sour cream

Luckily I had vanilla essence, butter, sugar.

So, following the methodology I started the bake on Monday to complete everything on Tuesday. The base,  then the cheesecake.  Baking in the bath with low temperature was the key to an almost perfect cheesecake.  Mine broke,  but I let it cool slowly in the oven as per advised in the blog, and it all came together.  I was going to cover up the cracks with whipped cream anyway.

After the 2nd day,  it was assembly time.  Whipped up cream,  put on the top only, as I wanted the layers to be seen from the side.  The day before,  I also had words written out from chocolate,  and cooled in the fridge.   I have bad handwriting,  so thought I'd just print out what I need to put on the cake, and use it as a stencil. 

Finally, putting the cake together. To at least make it look a little more presentable,  added cherries that was soaked in kirsch,  boiled in cornflour to thicken the sauce.


This cake is very soft, creamy, not too heavy, not too sweet because I reduced the sugar, added lemon.

As there were some extra cream cheese and the graham biscuit, made into smaller ones, top it with some extra chocolates that I had,   put into paper cups to be easily distributed.  


My son said that this cake is not sweet enough, but his friend love it.  Usually cake takes about more than a week to finish,  this time,  2 days,  and its gone.  I'm totally satisfied with this bake,  worth the time.      

Birthday Cakes

posted May 3, 2014, 11:11 PM by Jenny Loh   [ updated May 3, 2014, 11:12 PM ]

Special birthday cakes…..
In 2010,  my son visited Australia on his own with his grandparents.  He had a great time there,  hanging out with his cousins, helping out at the warehouse where my sister and  my brother had import and export businesses.

When he returned home,  he handed me a magazine,  and said, mom - present for you.  MasterChef Magazine July 2010 - featuring Adriano Zumbo's Macaron Tower.  And make this…..pointing at the cover page of the cover photo. Macaron Tower.  Turned the page to the recipe and the method,  I thought,  this was too difficult.  I said to my son. Ok, make this for your birthday. 

2012,  my son was turning 13.  I recalled that I promised him a Macaron Cake.  In search of an easy recipe,  I went online,  and 2-3 weeks before his birthday,  attempted an online recipe.  It turned out no good at all.  I decided to follow exactly the way it was instructed in the magazine.  Using my little notebook,  I decided to make a chocolate cake as the triangular tower,  and stick the macaron with a toothpick onto the cake.  

Each of the macaron puff up nicely, smooth surface and I just make a very simple chocolate filling.  The assembling was a challenge, I was never good at art, and trying to make it look beautiful,  elegant is just not me.  Tried my best to have it stuck to the chocolate cake without each of the macaron being coated with chocolate finger prints,  I managed to tower up.

The kids had a great time,  and when I brought it out,  kids were impressed and they were snatching up the macarons and gobbling up the chocolate cake.  I was totally pleased with it.

2013 came.  My son and I were just surfing the net.  In Singapore,  there was a craze over Lady M's Mille Crepe that just opened shop in Singapore.  I was totally curious.  Isn't crepe easy to make? Why are these people paying so much for such cakes?  So,  here I am,  early in the year,  told my son,  my challenge this year for your birthday cake is Mille Crepe - Ok?  He said ok.

And there I was couple of weeks before his birthday,  thinking how am I going to make the crepe without a flat pan.  I went online and started to search for the recipe as well as a pan that I can make think layer of crepe.  I was lucky to find an electric one.  Again,  2 weeks before,  I tried one of the recipe,  and tried to learn how to use the pan.  Obviously, it took me a while to master the flipping,  the evenness of the wet dough on the pan.  

I used a mix of 2 recipes from online:  20 Layer Crepe Cake by Ellen Easton 2009 and Tasting Table - Best Pastry Chefs - Mille Crepe Tiramisu.  Making the crepe was easy enough after the first few attempts.  I was trying to make the tiramisu filling and I think I over beat the mascarpone cheese,  it turned watery.  I just couldn't use it.  Had to run out to purchase new ones to make them.  Luckily I was in time.  I even had time to make wordings from chocolate.  I probably made 30 layers of crepe tightly packed.

This time we only invited 2 of the other boys over to celebrate with him.  The Italian friend that is so fussy with food had like 2 extra servings, I guess the Tiramisu taste suits him well. Again,  assembling is not my strength, but the overall cake was absolutely tasty.

November 2013,  my husband's birthday.  I decided to make a traditional Blackforest Cake.  It's just one of those times when I just like things simple, back to basic,  no nonsense type of cake.  I had a collection of Cordon Bleu cookbooks and one of them featuring Cakes.  This is one book that I used quite frequently.  

The cake turned out fluffily,  moist,  and we don't like lots of cream,  so,  I half the cream to be used.  I guess if its for selling,  I would have used more cream.  I just love my dark chocolates that I had used to cover the whole cake.  Not a cake to be kept long,  best to have it on the day it was made.

Its 2014,  half the year has gone by,  our main celebrations are usually end of the year,  so what challenges should I give myself?

Bavarian Pretzel

posted Feb 23, 2014, 1:28 AM by Jenny Loh   [ updated Feb 23, 2014, 1:33 AM ]

Adapted from Daniel Leader's recipe. Looks easy but not so easy...

I tried this recipe last week and it was a total failure.  I threw the whole bunch away after spending a whole day working on it. 

I've decided that last week what went wrong was:
1. Instant Yeast was not working well.
2. Dough was too hard
3. I didn't let the dough rise properly
4. I added flour when shaping
5. Because it didn't rise properly,  I had to boil for a long time,  the whole thing was too hard

So,  this week,  I just had to try again.  I cannot believe I can't get it right.

Here's the recipe.  


1. Mix flour, yeast, salt and butter - using a mixer.
2. Mix water and starter,  pour into dry ingredients.  Knead well.
3. Let the dough rise.  As its winter here,  I had to let is rise for about 8 hours. It should rise nicely into a dome shape.
4. Pour out and divide.  I didn't want my pretzel too big,  cut into 16 pieces.  About 78-90g each.
5. Do not add flour at this stage.  Shape it round first,  let rest for 5 mins.  
6. Roll it length wise, like a pencil.  Shaping it takes a bit of practice. Mine is still not perfect,  but at least it took shape.
7. Put onto a tray with baking paper.  Let it refrigerate over night.  Winter here,  I just left it at my yard, how convenient,  and my fridge is not messed up.
8.  After 9 hours,  boil water, add baking soda 1 teaspoon at a time.
9.  Drop the dough 1 at a time.  It will sink to the bottom and get a little stuck.  I used a scoop to shake it off.  The dough will float after about 10 sec.  If it doesn't float,  something is wrong.  Drop the 2nd one in and pick up the 1st one out.  It will look a little yellowish, bubble on the surface,  expand a little.
10.  After all boiled,  oven ready at 175C,  not too high,  and bake for 30-35 mins till reddish brown.  You will see it slowly bloom, and you know you got it right!

Couple of things that I had to adjust:

1.  I added starter.  Because my starter is so active and bubbly I just had to use it.  And I had more confident that the dough will rise nicely.

2.  The original recipe called for only 300g of water.  Somehow,  it was so hard after the 1st mix.  I just had to soften it by adding water.

3.  It called for 80g of soda,  I used a small pot,  and I just just about 4 teaspoonful of baking soda.  The last time,  it smell quite bad with so much soda.

And here's my Pretzel Bun and Pretzel,  I'm so happy that it turned out so well.

It was crispy on the outside,  and soft and chewy inside.  This is best when hot!

Breads, breads, breads.......

posted Jun 26, 2013, 8:26 AM by Jenny Loh   [ updated Jul 1, 2013, 6:45 AM ]

I have been busy baking, just not updating this site. 

I have been baking several favorite recipes over and over again, and tweaking the recipes a little here and there.  

One of them is using the Pizza recipe,  and turning it into a roll.  Brushing the top with a mix of olive oil, paprika, cayenne, dried herbs such as thyme, parsley, rosemary.   This is one of the favorites for the kids!  In no time,  it's gobbled up.

Another variation using the Pizza dough is Focaccia.  I learnt this from an Italian mama,  its so easy and can be done within 4 hours,  its done.  Great as a party food.  Using a rectangular pan,  pour some olive oil,  pan the dough using fingertips till it is all spread out.  Brush with olive oil, throw some herbs such as rosemary or thyme,  shake some salt over.  

Another one that I like is the simple white loaf that I got the  recipe from a Japanese web site,  using Google translate,  figured out what the recipe says.  And, why must white loaf be in the shape of a loaf?

Why can't it be round?  Well,  I made it round! 

Another favorite is the Deli Rye Bread,  love that it's soft, open crumb.  So,  why not mix a little with whole wheat,  add herbs or nuts? 

Why not turn it into a burger roll to make a burger?  This burger is healthier,  and certainly taste better!  

I simply love experimenting,  and try out new things.  Perhaps it's time to focus on this.  

Kueh Bangkit

posted Jan 28, 2013, 6:43 PM by Jenny Loh

Adapted from Hot Favourites Kueh published by e-lifestyle.

I finally made Kueh Bangkit that tasted like how my mom made it. The strong taste of coconut melts in your mouth,  not too sweet,  but sweet enough from the coconut.  

I've experimented before and those turned out to be hard,  and you literally have to chew,  and there's just not enough coconut taste.  It's been difficult to find fresh coconut milk, and I've just resorted to using packet ones.  Checked the ingredients, the highest % of coconut milk is 90%,  and 10% water.  And this cookie just don't like water at all.

I finally called mom,  and her 2 advices were:

1.  Stir fry tapioca flour till fluffy

2.  If use coconut milk from packet,  boil with pandan leave.

Alright, mom's advice are usually good,  but it does requires some common sense to really fully appreciate what she is saying.  Fluffy,  what does that mean?  Boil the coconut milk - for how long? Following these advice,  looking at what other bakers did on the internet,  and working through my own sense, feel,  smell,  whatever senses that I can use,  here's what I did:


500g Tapioca Starch

140g Sugar

2 Egg Yolks

1 Egg White

85ml Thick Coconut milk (and a little more) - used Kara Coconut Milk - Classic

10 pieces Pandan leave 

1.   Heat up pan in small fire,  put 5 pieces of pandan leave (tied in knot)) and let fry for a few minutes till the fragrant of pandan is in the pan.   I fry the pandan leave till dry.   Add Tapioca Flour and fry.  This took about 45 - 60 minutes.  The Tapioca flour became much lighter,  and easily fly out of the pan.  So,  be careful when stirring.  Leave to cool.  Book advised to leave cool up to 2-3 days. Mom said at least 1 day.  I left it to cool for about 10 hours (it was cold in Shanghai,  5 degrees celsius in kitchen)

2.  Next,  heat up coconut milk (I used the full packet of 400 ml)  with 5 pieces of pandan leave (tied in knot),  and let boil.  Boil for 30 minutes in slow fire.  The milk should thicken.  Stir well to prevent from sticking.  Once you see that it is thick,  trickles down slowly,  that will do.  It will become half about 200 ml.  The smell of the coconut milk will also be strong,  floods the kitchen.  leave to cool.  Discard the pandan leave after cooled.

3.  Beat eggs together first till it turns whiter and lighter,  add sugar and whip till foamy.  It will also thicken.  Using an electric whip,  it took me about 20 minutes to get it foamy and thick. 

4,  Add 85 ml coconut milk to the eggs & sugar, whip till well mixed.  

5.  Sift the cooled tapioca starch to the mixture (keep a portion of the tapioca starch aside to cloud the biscuit cutter).  Sieve the flour properly as there will be pandan leaves that might have broken off.   Slowly stir and fold the mixture.  Bring out and  knead the dough.

6.  The dough seems a little hard at first,  add some coconut milk, 1 tsp at a time.  and knead. what I did was to knead portion by portion of the dough,  add coconut milk when needed if the dough is too dry.

7.  Roll the dough at 0.3cm,  use a biscuit cutter.  ensure that you flour well before using.  The dough easily breaks, so,  handle with care, gently.

8.  Place on lined baking tray,  bake at 160 degrees celsius for 15 minutes.  Put on the middle tray of oven.

9.  Leave completely cool before removing from baking tray and store in air tight containers.

Here's my Kueh Bangkit,  I believe I've tried like 3-4 times,  it didn't quite turn out as expected.  This time,  it worked,  I just need to get it smoother,  probably can add a little more coconut milk to smoothen the texture.  

The learnings here is patience,  let the tapioca flour cool completely.  spend time to stir fry the tapioca flour.  

Rosetta Rolls

posted Nov 25, 2012, 1:59 AM by Jenny Loh   [ updated Nov 25, 2012, 2:00 AM ]

Rosetta Soffiati.  Daniel Leader's - Local Bread.  Il Fornaio and Italian Independent Bakers

I almost thought I lost touch with baking bread using my high gluten flour.  Its been turning out too chewy,  too hard,  these few weeks.  I haven't got really good bake even with a normal white loaf that normally turns out fluffy.  

But today,  today is the special day. My magic touch is back!  Perhaps I should just blame it on my tendonitis that I got on my shoulder,  that causes my arm not to work so well.  Well,  it's not like I've been using a lot of kneading using my hands,  still,  I'm always looking for an excuse for a bad bake.

These rolls,  turns out soft,  fluffy, light,  and crisp. can be achieved using my sack of high gluten flour,  and the magic formula from Daniel Leader's book - Local Bread.  Simply love this book, because,  it is simple,  it is easy to follow,  and the breads that I make,  usually turns out beautifully.

This is one bread that takes time.  I have time,  time on the weekend to bake.  

I started out with Saturday morning,  it was a great weather on Saturday,  checked the weather report, was going to rain the next day,  ok, I had better build in my 5km run this morning.  Very quickly,  flipping through Leader's book,  I was choosing between Como Bread or Rosetta Rolls,  I have plenty of high gluten flour,  I had better use the recipe that requires such type of flour.  There,  I've made up my mind.  

Measuring out the ingredients for the bigs - wow,  I realized its more than usual amount of biga to make this bread,  interesting.  Mixing it up,  a quick knead of 1-2 minutes in my large metal bowl,  and the dough came together,  not smooth,  just enough to pull together,  strange,  it's quite dry.  I've been playing with wet dough too much recently. Transfer it into my newly bought rectangular box,  I left it on the table top covered lightly.

Got into my running gears,  and went out running.  It was indeed good weather for a run.  I managed to run 5.6km that morning.  Coming home after 1 hour,  the biga had risen. I let it go on for another half hour,   as my kitchen is cold, and then put into the fridge, it was about 10.30am.  It will be another 9-17 hours in the fridge, that's what the book says.   I had to get a roll stamp,  that's what the book says.  Searched online,  trying to look for one,  ordered some stamp like baking equipment.  It says confirmed my order and will be delivered.  I did hope that it will deliver the following day.  All right,  I guess I don't need to bake that day,  I decided to go for a walk outside.  The week had been miserable with too much rain.  Not wasting a day when the sun is out,  we went out for a walk and let my son try out his photography.

I came back in the evening,  and decided that perhaps I should just let it go till the following day.  

Waking up early morning,  I was thinking about my dough.  Yes,  it was bubbly,  risen more than double, smelt a little acidic.  Took it out of the fridge, put into the blender,  add the rest of the ingredients,  water first,  followed by flour and salt.  Using my Kenwood Platinum,  mix at level 3 for 10 minutes.  The dough was smooth and silky. Did the window pane test,  nice!

Took out the hook and left it in the blender to rise,  I let it rise for 1 hour.  My kitchen was still cold.  It doubled nicely.   

I poured it out on the tabletop lightly floured.  Fold into a rectangle.  Suppose to cut into 12 pieces, at 80g,  I decided to cut into 16 pieces.  Too lazy to measure each piece,  I just decided to divide them up as evenly as I can.  Well,  it didn't quite even out esp the ends.  Anyway,  I rolled them up into balls,  ensuring that I stretch it nicely and tightly.  Oh gosh,  my roll stamp is not here!  I had to improvise.  Using my cookie cutter,  putting a couple of the design together,  I decided,  this might just work.  Stamping it with the cookie cutter,  well,  some of them cut too deep.  

Laid the rectangular tray with a baking sheet,  floured lightly,  I put each of the stamped rolls face down.  Let them rise for 1 hour (I think I went a little over),  and put them in the fridge covered with plastic wraps.  The book says 3-8 hours.  I let it sit in the fridge for 5 hours.  

I started to heat up the oven at 250 degree celsius,  1 hour before I bake.   I wanted to put both trays in at the same time,  but the book says, put them in the middle,  bake slightly lighter,  so,  I thought,  well,  the first tray will be a bit close to the top,  may be baked too quickly,  anyway its only 15 mins each,  I decided to go 1 tray at a time.

Removing them from the fridge,  45 mins before baking to let it rise a little more.  Just before baking,  flip them over,  oh,  my stamps didn't quite work.  The design was almost gone.  The one with the heart seems to work better.  Oh well.  It will work.  Loading them into the oven,  I noted that the book didn't require steam.  I sprayed some water on the dough anyway.  15 mins of baking at 245 degree celsius.

The rolls rose nicely,  like a tennis ball,  as what the book says.  I was pleased.

Second tray went in,  and same effect.  

I love these rolls,  I just need to get some nice roll stamps to make some beautiful looking rolls.




315g Water
10g Instant Yeast
500g Bread Flour

Bread Dough
70g Water
50g Bread Flour
10g Salt
all biga

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