Banh Bo Nuong (Vietnamese Honeycomb Cake/Pandan Coconut Tapioca Cake)

I know I haven’t been posting that much. I feel kind of guilty! I always take pictures of my food, post them on Instagram, tell myself I’ll post the recipe, then never get to it! Lemme tell ya, with a young baby to take care of, cooking mostly everything from scratch and keeping my Instagram account active, it’s hard to find the time to sit down and just… write. I’m even starting school up again on Monday. Time is going to seem minimal, but I will try my best to keep up with my posts.

Anyhow, A couple weeks ago my mother-in-law made banh bo from a prepared package of flour she brought back from Vietnam, the results were good. Then last week she made banh bo from a package she bought at an Asian store here I don’t know what she did to it but it was like eating plain old tapioca. She also tried to use the same package to make banh bo nuong, It was interesting, in a bad way. Anyhow, I told her I’d find a recipe and make it. She said I wouldn’t be able to do it because she’s tried many times and can never get it right. That’s something I really dislike, when someone says I’m not able to do something. I always prove them wrong, just like this time… I’ve proved her wrong. I searched and researched about making this snack/dessert and found a really great recipe. Mine didn’t rise as much as it’s supposed to, I think perhaps it needed to be baked a little longer even though after the initial 10 minutes at 350˚ and 30 minutes at 300˚ I added another 15, to make a total of 45 minutes at 300˚ (the oven at my mother-in-law’s is really small and old so that could’ve contributed to the non-rising factor). Mine still came out good, but hopefully yours will come out better!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups Tapioca flour
  • 4 oz (1/2 cup) Coconut Milk
  • 1 bag Alsa Brand Single Acting Baking Powder, 11grs (use any brand you prefer but it has to be Single Acting)
  • 6 large Eggs or 7 small Eggs
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Pandan Extract (lá dứa) and 1/2 bag Vanilla Sugar or use only Pandan Extract or Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 2 teaspoons roasted sesame seeds, optional

Directions:

Turn on the oven and preheat to 350′ F. Brush oil on the  baking pan and heat it in the oven on the 2nd lowest rack.
Sift the flour and baking powder together.
In a large bowl, lightly stir the egg and sugar with a whisk or a fork so that no bubbles form. Remember to stir just enough to homogenize the whites and yolks. Over stirring the eggs can cause the cake to be flat. Then stir in flour mixture, coconut milk, pandan or vanilla. Break up any lumps with the back of a spoon. Use a strainer to strain the mixture into another bowl.
Pour the mixture into the hot baking pan that is still in the oven.  You should hear the sizzling sound.  If you like sesame seeds, sprinkle some on top of the mixture. Bake it for about 10 minutes then reduce the heat to 300′ F.  Bake for another 30 minutes or until golden.  If your oven is not convection, bake it for a little bit longer. Insert a toothpick in the center of a cake to test for quick cake doneness. If the toothpick comes out clean, the cake is done.

Turn off oven and let the cake sit in there for a few minutes before taking it out.  Let it cool for a little bit before removing it from the baking pan.
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Chocolate Cupcakes Mmmmm

I went to a baby shower on Saturday and I thought bringing cupcakes would be a nice gesture. I used this recipe before and loved it!!! These chocolatey, heavenly, little cakes are very moist and scrumptious. The frosting is a chocolate butter cream recipe that I made up, but tweaked it a little bit at the end but that’ll be up to you whether or not you want to. I hope you’ll enjoy them as much as I do. 🙂

Ingredients:

Chocolate Cupcakes:

  • 3ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine (see note)
  • 1/3cup (1 ounce) Dutch-processed cocoa
  • 3/4cup hot coffee
  • 3/4cup (4 1/8 ounces) bread flour
  • 3/4cup (5 1/4 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 1/2teaspoon table salt
  • 1/2teaspoon baking soda
  • 6tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2large eggs
  • 2teaspoons white vinegar
  • 1teaspoon vanilla extract

Frosting:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup bittersweet chocolate chips, such as Ghirardelli
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted (optional)

Directions:

Chocolate Cupcakes:

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line standard-sized muffin pan
(cups have ½-cup capacity) with baking-cup liners. Place chocolate and cocoa in medium bowl. Pour hot coffee over mixture and whisk until smooth. Set in refrigerator to cool completely, about 20 minutes. Whisk flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside.

Whisk oil, eggs, vinegar, and vanilla into cooled chocolate-cocoa mixture until smooth. Add flour mixture and whisk until smooth.

Divide batter evenly among muffin pan cups. Place one slightly rounded teaspoon ganache filling on top of each cupcake. Bake until cupcakes are set and just firm to touch, 17 to 19 minutes. Cool cupcakes in muffin pan on wire rack until cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes. Carefully lift each cupcake from muffin pan and set on wire rack. Cool to room temperature before frosting, about 1 hour.

Frosting:

In a medium bowl, using an electric hand mixer, beat the butter until light and smooth. Beat in the powdered sugar, milk and vanilla until smooth and creamy.

Place the chocolate chips in a small bowl and place over a small pan of barely simmering water. Heat, stirring occasionally, until the chocolate is melted and smooth, about 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat. Add the melted chocolate to the vanilla frosting and stir until smooth. Add the extra unsweetened cocoa powder if desired.

It’s Impossible To Screw Up A Burger!

Every time I make a burger, I think of those shows like Kitchen Nightmare or Restaurant Impossible and when the restaurant can’t even make a decent burger I think to myself, no wonder you’re about to shut down! Seriously, making a good burger is so simple.

What you’ll need:

  • Ground Beef (80-85% Lean)
  • Garlic Powder
  • Onion Powder
  • Kosher Salt
  • Pepper
  • Cheese (optional)

Directions:

Form the ground beef into patties however big you want them, but make sure you don’t pack them too hard or over work the beef, then take your thumb and put an indentation on one side of each patty (this helps them from shrinking). In a small bowl pour as much of the seasonings you want in, I always pinch a little bit and lick it to make sure it tastes good and is not too salty. Sprinkle the seasoning mixture over both sides of the patties. If you’re cooking them in a pan like I usually do, cook them on each side for 2-3 minutes (this depends on how thick your patties are and how done you want them to be). If you want melted cheese on your burgers during the last minute of cooking put a slice of whatever kind of cheese you like on the patty and cover with a lid. You’ll get the perfect burger every time!