Saturday, August 9, 2008

What I have been up to...

Initially I was dreading to blog this post because I haven't been blogging for a while and sort of lost the momentum for it. The combination of acquiring a job and my mum's return from overseas meant that I can put my cooking days behind me and answer my grumbling tummy at my mother's place!  So I was thinking to myself that I had nothing much to show for myself. As I was looking through my virtual photo album, I realized there were some stuff that I have been doing, just that I did not bother to 'prettify' the photos. 

Of all the things I wish I did more of was salads. I realise I have only made two salads so far (what a shame I have been to vegetarians!). One was the five fruit salad which was really yummy and now the one below consisting of all the left over vegetables I could find at home and dousing it with some vinegar, salt, sugar and pepper. I omitted the olive oil to make it healthier. I realize though I love salads a lot, I don't eat them much because they don't fill me up. I know the problem is that I don't mix calorie dense food like nuts and avocados, so I'm gonna try do more of that.
I also realized that I actually made some cupcakes for my uncle's family. My uncle had invited my family over for a meal since my brother just returned from US. However hubby and I were quite apprehensive as we were not sure if the food was going to be vegetarian. Luckily, mum informed them beforehand and I remember having a lovely spread of rice, mock mutton curry, stir fried vegetables and beet-root cutlet! Yes, it was my first time having beet-root cutlet and it was really tasty. Since then, mum has made it at home too and she incorporates beet-root in noodles and fried rice. Very colorful and nutritious! So in appreciation, I made them a batch of mocha cupcakes with coffee frosting. I sprinkled it with some chocolate rice (unfortunately not vegan) but I think they look darn pretty!

 VSS is a great place to meet vegetarian friends and support. One of the places highly rated by the forumers was this restaurant called Delivege. Though hubby and I mostly do not eat out, we decided to give this place a try because of its rave reviews. We went there after work and the places was starting to fill up. The service was good, even the chef came and spoke to us and made recommendations about the famous DFC. Hubby decided to try that and I settled for the grilled 'chicken' since 'chicken' rice was not available on that day. The food was good but perhaps our expectations were overly stroked by the chef singing praises of the DFC and also by the recommendations from the forum. I wouldn't say I was blown away by the food. My only beef (if I may use the word) was that it was a bit pricey. The two pics below shows exactly what we ate, without any drinks and that alone came up to slightly more than $20. We will probably go there only on special occasions.
The famous DFC
Grilled Chicken
And finally, I participated in a vegetarian food fair sometime on the 12th of July to raise funds for a nursing home for the elderly. I baked about 300 cupcakes and sold it all off! Phew! I made some vanilla raspberry cupcakes as a tester. 

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Your cup cake look beautiful :)

You can't stop posting, we will miss it.

CC said...

Hey there, may I know where is VSS located at? Anyway if you don't mind, I have been looking for 'cheese', soy spreads, fake bacon and all the vegan products; where do you usually stock 'em from?

Halimah said...

Hi,

I'm not sure if VSS has an office but you can check out their website:

http://www.vegetarian-society.org/

Actually I don't go out of my way to buy vegan products because I find them rather processed... I try to just eat vege in its original state but I previously bought soy cheese from Cold Storage (Jelita) n also at Naturally Yours Marketplace located at Harbour Front. I think some vegan food can be found in normal supermarkets just that we need to read the ingredient list more carefully :)

Keep me updated if you find a vegan paradise! hahaha!

Anonymous said...

hi,
may i know how u make your cupcake "stand up" so nicely. My sister tried to bake but after cool down it drop to half of the cup.

---- summer

Halimah said...

Hi Summer,

I just follow the recipes and most of the time they are okie.

I'm really not sure why they sink, but this is what I managed to find on the net:

Cakes will sink or fall because:

1). Overbeating – too much air is incorporated into batter.

2). Underbaking - Oven temperature too low and/or too short a baking time.

3). Over or under measurement of liquid or under measurement of flour.

4). Using too small or large of a baking pan.

5). Moving or jarring cake before sufficiently baked or opening the oven door before cake sets.

Note: Only open oven door if absolutely needed, one-half to three-quarter's way through baking.

6). The most common error has to do with the oven temperature. Make sure you have an oven thermometer to test your oven for accuracy.

7). Depending on the recipe if you fold in egg whites, if not beaten fully or folded in too harshly, the cake could fall.

8). Even creaming the butter and sugar too much or too little can cause problems.

Hope this helps!

Anonymous said...

Hi halimah,
Tks for your info. So the cupcake you make are with eggs? We are trying to learn to bake without eggs but do not have a good recipe. Do u know where to get one?
Thks...

...summer

Halimah said...

Hi Summer,

I bake without eggs and diary 99% of the time since I turned vegetarian. The only time I baked a 'normal' cake was for my hubby's fav sugee cake for his b'day in August and that was because I had not veganised the recipe.

The pointers I gave u were all cut and paste from the net. I wasn't sure if u baked with eggs. There are a lot of simple recipes out there on the net. Search for vegan recipes or wacky cakes. Especially those cooking sites with ratings like www.allrecipes.com and recipezar are some of the places I go to.

A lot of it is also trial and error. But eventually, you'll get the hang of it :)