Dead yeast is not a good friend

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As everyone knows, yeast is a living organism and have to be stored in a cool dry place. Singapore is definitely not a cool dry place to start with.

I made a mistake by placing the opened bottle of yeast in the cupboard after baking some bread a few months ago. So when I had the “urge” to make another bread, I used the same yeast, thinking it should be fine. But during proofing stage, the dough did not rise at all, not even a centimeter. It just sits there like a paperweight. As an engineer, I had another “urge” to see what happens if I bake the “unrisen” bread. The result came out like this:

fail bread

 

 

 

 

 

 

Although it looks baked on the outside, the internal texture is sticky and “doughy”. It is also very heavy by feel. It cannot be eaten at all.

Dead yeast is not a good friend.. at all.

The lesson for the day:

Always store (opened/unopened) yeast in the deepest darkest corner of the refrigerator. It will save you the embarrassment, wasted time and wasted ingredients.

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Glutinous Rice 糯米饭

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This is a feel good food when I was young. Mum will make this dish whenever possible and it always fill my stomach when I am hungry. I am trying to recreate this dish as close to my mum’s recipe so that I can cook it anytime.

Glutinous rice

Ingredients

200g glutinous rice (2 serving pax)

4 Mushrooms (香菇)

1 stick Chinese sausage (腊肠) (sliced)

10g dried shrimps (虾米)

100g pork loin (sliced/cubed depending on liking)

1 clove garlic (diced)

2 clove shallots (sliced)

1 tsp dark soy sauce (for coloring)

Marinate (for pork loin)

1 tsp light soy sauce

1 tsp corn flour

Dash of sesame seed oil

Dash of pepper

Garnishing

Sliced spring onion

Fried shallots

Preparation

  • Soak glutinous rice in water for 2 hours.
  • Soak mushroom and dried shrimps in water for 1 hour.
  • Slice the mushroom when softened.
  • Marinate pork loin for 1 hour.

*Note: Keep the water used to soak the shrimp and mushroom for later.

Cooking

  • Heat up wok with mixture of oil and sesame seed oil.
  • Fry the garlic and shallots until browned.
  • Throw in the loin meat and cook to 50% done.
  • Throw in the mushroom, shrimp, sausage and mix well.
  • Throw in the drained glutinous rice and mix well. Add in some of the water reserved from the preparation stage to moisten the mixture.
  • Add in the dark soy sauce and mix well.
  • Scoop the content to a steam container.
  • Steam the rice for 30 mins under slow fire.
  • Sprinkle spring onions and fried shallots on rice when done.

Suggested eating method

  • Warm it up by steaming for 5 mins
  • Add pepper, sesame seeds and/or crushed peanuts.

Cooking noodles

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Cooking instant noodles is supposed to be an easy thing, just dump the noodles into the boiling water, boil it for 2-3 minutes and eat it with condiments. Usually, the noodles will get too soggy after a straight cooking so to prevent it from getting soggy, the following tip can be used.

To get the QQ (or “springy”) noodle sensation, you need to “shock” the noodle in cold water after 1 minute of cooking it. That’s when the noodle starts to soften. Prepare a bowl of cold water, fish the noodles out after 1 minute and dump it into cold water. Soak it for a few seconds and dump the noodles back into the boiling water until it completely cooks under low fire.

Add in your condiments, side dishes and enjoy your noodle!!