Dan Tat.

February 7, 2011 at 1:34 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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Gung Hei Fat Choi!

I realize I am late but my Chinese-self still felt the need to wish everyone a happy new year. There is a reason that I wasn’t able to do a Chinese New Year post or a prior to Chinese New Years post.

My girls were sick.  Actually, they have been sick on-and-off since December.  The details are not ones to share on a food blog but I will say that I never want the stomach flu to infect our household again.

So my Chinese New Years was spent in the kitchen panicking and sweating profusely as I prepared dinner.  It’s all a blur now but I can remember crying, screaming, and being so tired collapsing on the kitchen floor into deep slumber.  I should clarify that those were the actions of my child/ren and not mine though the thought of throwing a tantrum and sleeping on the warm kitchen floor was tempting.

Regardless of the struggles, Chinese dinner was severed (with the help of my sister-in-law and mother whom I am extremely thankful for).  We had a feast of won-ton soup, cantonese flat rice noodles, General T’so chicken, sweet and sour pork, beef lettuce wraps and char siu (from BBQ Master in Richmond, BC).  Oh, and, of course, my favourite staple jasmine rice.

Dessert was simple yet satisfying.  I made a pineapple upside-down cake for my dad who doesn’t generally prefer asian desserts.  As for everyone else I made dan tats or, rather, egg tarts.

Dan tats are a favourite Chinese dessert of my mother which is comprised of, generally, a shortcrust shell filled with an egg custard.  They are quite simple and fast to make.

Celebrate the year of the rabbit and take pleasure in the little joys of life like dan tats.


Dan Tat/Chinese egg tart (adapted from My Kitchen Snippets)



  • 125 gm. unsalted butter, softened
  • 60 gm. confectioners sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 200 gm. all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Egg Custard

  • 280 gm. milk
  • 110 gm. granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

For the pastry:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare muffin tin by buttering or spraying tins with oil.

In a bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment beat butter and icing sugar till well mixed.

Add in the egg yolk and vanilla and mix until combined.

Slowly add flour and mix until dough comes together.

Cover dough with plastic wrap and cool in fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Once ready, grab about 2-3 tablespoons of dough and flatten into a disc with hands. Place disc in muffin tin to form a tart shape. Repeat until dough has been all used.

Bake the tart shell till half-cooked. This will take about 10 min. The pastry should turn white and slightly brown on the edges.

Remove from the oven.

Turn the oven heat down to 325 degree in order to bake egg custard.

For Egg Custard:

In a small saucepan set over medium heat, stir together sugar and milk until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and make sure milk does not boil.

Whisk eggs and then stir them into milk mixture. Add vanilla; combine.

Pour custard into tart shell and bake till custard sets about 20-30 minutes. Custard will be slightly jiggly when done.

Remove done tarts from oven and cool on wire rack.


A gung hay fat choi Valentine’s day fusion

February 14, 2010 at 9:13 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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Today is Valentine’s day and Chinese new year. I absolutely love both holidays and I am so happy that they fall on the same day this year.

I could talk about both holidays but I have decided to focus this post more on Valentine’s day.

Many people say that you either love Valentine’s day because you have someone, you despise it because you don’t have anyone or you hate it because you deem it as a consumer holiday.

The way I view Valentine’s day is just a day of love–a day to express to everyone the love you have for them. I know that many people say we should express our love everyday and we don’t need a holiday to do it. But, the reality is that people our busy and get caught up in their day-to-day life (or at least that is what I find).

Valentine’s day is a time where you are forced to recognize the loved one’s in your life. I feel that Valentine’s day is for those with significant others and those without.

Growing up I never had a Valentine. I actually didn’t have my first Valentine until four years ago and that was my husband. And though I never had a special sweetheart, I relished in the love the day brings.

The love I have for my mother; the love I have for my father; the love I have for my brother; the love I have for my friends and family; the love I have for humanity.

It didn’t matter if I had someone or not. What mattered was that I recognized that the world was celebrating a day of love.

To this day, my husband and I don’t buy cards for each other. Instead, we make cards. We show our love through affection and not presents. I make my family a meal out of love, which really isn’t any different than usually but you get the picture.

And that, I think, is what Valentine’s day is really about.

Here is a recipe for a dessert that I made for my family. I call it an international cheesecake because it combined Japanese cheesecake and american cheesecake together–perfect for a Chinese New Year’s valentines! If you want to make the Japanese cheesecake by itself you can too.


International Cheesecake


For Japanese Cheesecake:

  • One 7oz package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs, room temperature and seperated
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp cake flour
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar

For White chocolate American Cheesecake:

  • 1/4 cup white chocolate
  • One 7 oz package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

For raspberry sauce:

  • 1 1/2 cup frozen raspberries (or fresh, I just had frozen on hand)
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 3 tbsp sugar or more depending on your taste

For garnish:

  • Raspberries
  • White chocolate, melted

Method for cheesecake:
Prepare a 9 inch cheesecake pan by greasing it; set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a bowl of an electric mixer with a paddle attachment beat together cream cheese and milk until smooth. It is important to get the cream cheese smooth at this point so that you do not have to overbeat the mixture later which will result in the cheesecake cracking.

Once the mixture is smooth add the sugar, egg yolks, flour, cornstarch, vanilla and cocoa. Beat until smooth.

In a separate bowl, beat egg whites with an electric hand mixer until eggs become foamy. Slowly add the sugar and cream of tartar while constantly beating on high. Beat until soft peaks appear (8-10 minutes).

Slowly and gently fold the egg whites into the cream cheese mixture until combined.

Pour mixture into prepared cake pan and now start on the american cheesecake batter.

Place white chocolate in a microwavable proof dish. Put white chocolate in microwave and do the following: heat for 30 seconds; stir; heat for another 30 seconds; stir; heat for 10 seconds and stir until chocolate melts. Set aside to cool.

In a bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment cream together cream cheese and sugar. Cream on medium-high until smooth.

Beat in one egg at a time making sure that each egg is fully mixed in.

Turn mixer to slow speed and then and beat in chocolate, milk and vanilla.

Remove bowl from mixer and pour into cake pan on top of Japanese cheesecake mixture.

Bake in a preheated oven for 40 minutes or until centre is set.

Once done turn off oven. Leave cheesecake in oven with door ajar for one hour. Then remove cake, cover with tinfoil and place in fridge overnight.

Method for raspberry topping:

Mash raspberries together. Place in a saucepan over medium high heat with sugar and water. Bring to a boil. Cover saucepan and reduce heat to low and allow raspberries simmer for 20 minutes making sure to stir ever so often.

Taste raspberries as the cook adding more sugar if you find them too tart. I personally enjoy the raspberries semi tart as I find they play off the sweetness of the white chocolate.

Remove saucepan from from heat and pour into a bowl. Place in fridge and let chill for about an hour.


Remove cake and sauce from fridge. Pour sauce over cheesecake and spread with spatula. Garnish with raspberries and if you want put melted chocolate in a sandwich bag, cut the tip and write a lovely message.

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