Thursday, January 18, 2018

A taste of the orient


Japanese souffle cheesecake

Mark Fraser

 Feeling for something Asian-inspired this weekend? Here are a few recipes to get you started.

Japanese souffle cheesecake

Prep time: 30 mins 

Cook time: 1 hour 30 mins 



• 14oz  cream cheese, at room temperature

• 6tbsp granulated sugar

• 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, cut into ½” (1 cm) slices, at room temperature

• 6 large egg yolks, beaten, at room temperature

• 200 ml heavy whipping cream, at room temperature

• 2 tsp lemon juice

• 1 Tbsp rum (optional)

• 8 Tbsp all-purpose flour

• 3 Tbsp apricot jam + 1 tsp water

For meringue

• 6 egg whites, refrigerated

• 100g (10 Tbsp) granulated sugar for meringue


Before you start prepping, remember to keep cream cheese, butter, egg yolks, and heavy cream at room temperature.

Lightly grease the bottom and sides of a 9” (23 cm) spring-form pan with cooking spray and line with parchment paper.

Wrap the base of the cake pan with aluminium foil (preferably with extra-large heavy duty foil) to prevent seepage.

Preheat oven to 320F (160C) degree. Start boiling water.

In the bowl of the electric mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar on medium-high speed until smooth.

Add the butter and mix until thoroughly incorporated.

Add the egg yolk and heavy cream and mix well.

Add lemon juice and rum and mix until the batter is very smooth.

Sift the flour .

Add the flour all at once and mix well.

Transfer the batter to a large bowl. Wash the mixer bowl and dry completely. Make sure there is no oil or water in the bowl.

To make meringue, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. In the bowl of electric mixer, whip the egg whites on medium low speed (speed 4) till opaque and foamy and bubbly. Then add the sugar at a time as the mixer runs. 

Once all of the sugar has been added, increase the mixer speed to high (speed 10) and whip for approximately 4 minutes, until the meringue has doubled in volume and is thick and glossy.

To test for stiff peaks, the peaks should stand straight up when you lift up the beaters. 

The whites should not slide around. If the meringue has not reached the desired consistency, continue whipping at high speed for another 30 seconds, then stop and test again. Once the egg whites are over beaten, they can’t be used for the recipe. 

Add the meringue to the batter and mix well first.

Then add the rest of the meringue all at once and fold it in (not mix this time).

Pour the batter in the cake pan and then drop the pan from 2-3” (5-7 cm) high to the countertop to remove any air bubbles.

Place the cake pan in a large roasting pan and pour 1” (2.5 cm) of boiling water in the roasting pan. Place the baking pan in the middle rack of the oven. 

(The reason why we put hot water in the pan is that steam will help making cake soft and moist and hot water around the cake will gradually cook inside the cake while baking in the oven.) 

Bake at 320F (160C) for 60 minutes or until light golden brown. Then reduce temperature to 300F (150C) and bake for another 30 minutes.

When a wooden skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean without wet batter, turn off the oven. Let the cake sit in the oven with the door slightly ajar for 15 minutes. 

Remove from the oven. Take out the cake pan from the roasting pan, and let it cool on a wire rack.

In a small bowl, heat apricot jam and water in microwave for 30 seconds and spread the jam on top of the cake. When the cake is completely cool, take it out from the pan and refrigerate for a few hours before serving. 

Cut the cake with a fishing line or a warm knife (run a knife under hot water and wipe off completely before each cut). Served with lemon whip cream.

Please note : Leave the oven door ajar because sudden temperature change will result in collapse of the cake. 

—Photo courtesy merci-mama

Recipes courtesy the Trinidad and Tobago Hospitality 

and Tourism Institute

Sunomono cucumber salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 4 small servings


• 3 -4 cucumbers 

• 1/4 tsp salt 

• 3 Tbsp rice vinegar 

• 1 Tbsp sugar 

• 1/4 tsp soy sauce 

• 1 tsp sesame seeds

• 1 Iceberg lettuce

• 3 medium tomatoes


1. Slice cucumbers as thin as you can. Stir in salt, and let it sit for 5 minutes. Squeeze water out from cucumbers. 

2. In a small bowl, mix rice vinegar, sugar, and soy sauce together until sugar dissolves. 

3. Add vinegar mixture and sesame seeds to prepared cucumbers and mix well.

4. Slice iceberg thinly and arrange on four plates.

5. Place cucumber mix on top

6. Add 3 wedges tomato for garnish.  


courtesy yelpcdn 

Vegetarian and vegan tempura


• 1 cup flour

• 1/2 tsp salt

• 1/2 tsp sugar

• 1 tsp baking powder

• 1 cup water

• 3 tbsp vegetable oil

• oil for frying

• 2lbs mixed veggies, any kind


1. Combine the flour, salt, sugar and baking powder. Slowly add the oil and water until smooth and creamy.

2. Chill for at least 15 minutes. 

3. Heat several inches of vegetable oil in a wok or large frying pan over high heat. Dip the vegetables in the batter, then drop in the oil. 

4. Allow to cook for about 3 minutes, until crisp and lightly golden brown.

5. Drain on paper towels. 

6. Enjoy your vegetarian and vegan tempura! 

7. Please note if you would like a dipping sauce – ¼ cup honey, ½ cup soy sauce and 1tsp peanut oil/ sesame oil blended will make a nice light sauce.

 —Photo courtesy staticflickr