Friday, December 23, 2011

Happy Holidays!

Time flies when you are in a hurry. Since coming back from Europe, I've hit the ground running, getting back into the frantic pace that comes with having 3 children. Buying new uniforms, shoes, school bags, books, stationery, attending orientations ... the works!

As if that wasn't enough, I also received a mailer from my son's school, inviting me to sign up for a 2-day seminar entitled, "Parents, Ready, Get Set, Go!" And he's only starting Primary 1 next year. I promptly trashed it. It's bad enough that schools are pushing the students so hard, now they are pushing the parents too. Thanks, but no thanks.

And then, there was re-stocking of my larder, banking, catching up with friends, unpacking, fainting at the credit card bills, spring cleaning ... the works again!

Amazingly, I managed to sneak some time into my kitchen. My neglected oven and I had an emotional, tearful reunion a few days ago. Can you believe it has been almost 3 months since I touched that oven? Naturally, I was apprehensive about baking again.

True enough, I fumbled like a clueless newbie, knocking over ingredients and spilling batter. There were even a few occasions I actually threw my hands up in the air in disbelief! It was that bad.

So, what did I bake? Something French, of course! Since I couldn't be in France (*sniff*), I had to create my own piece of France here in Singapore.

First, I made some Lemon Almond Madeleines. These poor babies went through a lot just to be baked. My friend had given me a new madeleine pan recently, and in my excitement to use it, I completely forgot that it was too big for my tiny oven. When it was time to bake, I realised, horror of horrors, it was a good 2 inches wider than my oven door!

I put a clingwrap over the batter and sprinted over to my mum's. We tried her oven, and noooooooooooo, it was still too big! Desperate, we hopped over to her neighbour's, who immediately offered her oven. The pan went in with only a hair's breadth to spare! Talk about a baking emergency ... it was so, so close. I didn't even care if the madeleines developed those requisite knobbly humps. I just wanted to see them baked!

As you can see, the humps did appear. I consider that nothing short of a miracle, considering all the chilling and thawing and fiddling in the oven. Sometimes, we just get lucky. :)

And then I also made some Mont Blanc-inspired trifles. I had leftover chestnut puree but was just too lazy to make the actual Mont Blanc. So I took the short cut and did a "deconstructed" version of it. It's the cheat's way of making this lovely French treat, and taste-wise, there's no difference. If you are short of time, trifle's the way to go. Just layer everything and voila, ready to eat.

Well, that's the gist of what's been happening on my end. I will post the recipe of the Lemon Almond Madeleines another day, so watch this space.

I just did this pointless post because all I really wanted to say was:
"Happy Holidays, everyone! May all your dreams come true in 2012!"

And THANK YOU for being part of my journey here at The Little Teochew. XOXO


  1. The madeleines look good to me :)
    Just like me, I cant buy big pan - for now, cos my oven is tiny :)
    Merry Xmas to u and family :)

  2. can't wait for the recipe.... can you make madeleines without the mould?

  3. Happy Holidays to you too..Sweet Ju.

  4. Nothing like a little inspired food from our trips. Happy holidays!

  5. Have a very Happy Holidays to you too! :)

  6. Love that you still make time to bake even with your crazy schedule. Those madelines look so yummy...will definitely come back for the recipe :)

    Happy Holidays to you and your family as well. Thanks for all the inspirations!

  7. Happy holidays and Merry Christmas to you and your family! ^o^

  8. You have not lost your touch sweet girl!
    Happy Holidays!
    Love to you!

  9. A very Happy Christmas and a Prosperous New Year to you.

  10. merry xmas & happy new year ju, had been following ur blog for a long time, love it love it love it!

  11. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year! :)

  12. Happy holidays - while it lasts for busy parents like you:)
    Btw, love reading your blog.

  13. Yes, the holidays are coming to an end and the mad rush will start again next week. However do enjoy the long weekend and all the best for 2012 to you and your family.

  14. I am a big fan of Madeleines!
    Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to you!