Step By Step Butternut Pumpkin Chiffon Cake

I am back with another dessert recipe made with butternut pumpkin. After I made butternut pumpkin pudding and butternut pumpkin cake, I challenged myself to another level of cake making, and that was to make chiffon cake.

I have made cakes which required to beat the egg whites separately and then fold the meringue with the egg yolk butter, and after several times trying to do it correctly, I must say that I always failed miserably. The cakes were always shrinking (a lot), deflate, had wrinkles on the sides, didn’t rise properly, and other bad things that could happen to a cake. Thankfully, some of them were still good enough to eat although they didn’t look so good. So, this pumpkin chiffon cake was my first success story of making cake that needed to beat the egg yolks and whites separately.

I did some research thoroughly through the internet before I finally made this pumpkin chiffon cake. There were lots of methods ad some dos and don’ts that I read that actually made me confuse and was so afraid to try making chiffon cake, but then I found some bakers who were willing to share a very detail step by step of how to make chiffon cake with lots of pictures that was very easy to understand.

So, after combining the things that I have read, now it was time to practice, because just knowing the things means nothing if I didn’t dare to try…………….and so here comes my first successful chiffon cake………….

The cake stayed in its shape with no wrinkles on the sides (which I was afraid the most), no shrinkage, and it didn’t deflate like my first chiffon cake ( I underbaked my first chiffon cake so I had to throw away everything into the dustbin).  My second chiffon cake (which was pandan chiffon cupcakes) shrunk a lot although it was still delicious to eat.

In case you’re wondering why my pumpkin chiffon cake looks so yellow like in very dark yellow color compared to other pumpkin chiffon cake that you see in other websites, well, here’s the secret………………….first of all, I didn’t use any yellow food coloring for this cake, but I used butternut pumpkin instead of the usual round shape pumpkin. Butternut pumpkin has darker color which will make a difference in the outcome of the dish. It is also sweeter so I usually reduced the amount of sugar. It is slightly more expensive and sometimes not easy to get, so I only buy them when they are on sale.

The cake was so soft and moist and we all really loved it. There was no taste of pumpkin at all and no one was able to guess that the cake was made of vegetables. I couldn’t stop taking one slice and then followed by another slice and another slice when I took photos of this cake, although it was recommend to eat the cake one day after I made it for stronger flavour. I served this for breakfast (so I didn’t have to wake up so early on weekends), and I was so happy when everyone really enjoyed it.

So soft, moist, and delicious………..

It should have been baked in a 20 cm tube pan, but since I didn’t have it, I used a slightly bigger pan, and that was why my cake wasn’t so tall.

By the way, you have to use a special chiffon cake tube pan. I have tried using another pan but failed miserably, so I suggest you use the correct tube pan for best result.

And now, here’s the complete recipe and step by step of how to make pumpkin chiffon cake:



  1. 6 egg yolk
  2. 20 gr caster sugar
  3. 40 gr fresh milk
  4. 50 gr cooking oil (I used canola oil)
  5. 1 tsp vanilla essence
  6. 100 gr mashed pumpkin puree in room temperature (peel and cut pumpkin in cubes, steam until soft and mash with a fork while it’s still hot)
  7. 100 gr cake flour
  8. 1 tsp baking powder
  9. 1/2 tsp salt


  1. 6 egg whites
  2. 1 tsp lime juice or lemon juice
  3. 80 gr caster sugar


  1. Start preheating your oven together with the chiffon cake tube pan inside (160 Celsius for fan forced and 170 Celsius for non fan forced oven)
  2. Cream 6 egg yolks and 30 gr caster sugar in a mixer in high speed (speed 3 is the highest speed in my mixer)  for about 5 minutes or until it is light and triple in volume
    Add egg yolks and sugar to the mixing bowl
    After mixing for 5 minutes: triple in volume
  3. Add milk, oil, vanilla essence, and pumpkin puree to the mixing bowl and mix until well incorporated
    Add pumpkin puree and other liquid ingredients
    Mix until well incorporated
  4. Turn off the mixer and sift flour, baking powder, and salt into the mixing bowl (this method save my time and bowl to wash)
    Sift the dry ingredients
  5. In low speed, mix the flour mixture with other ingredients just until well combined. Do not overmix. Use a spatula to scrape the flour from the sides of the mixing bowl to fasten the mixing process. Transfer the batter to a bowl
    Dark yellow color mixture
  6. The batter should be nice, light, and double in volume, so it will be easier to fold it into the egg white meringue (this was the first time that I tried this method instead of just mixing all together with a balloon whisk and spatula, and I was really impressed with how easy for me to mix everything and folding the batter in the end)
    The final result of egg yolk batter
  7. Wash and clean and dry the mixing bowl and the whisks thoroughly before using them to beat the egg whites. Make sure there are no yolk, oil, or water left before start whisking the white
  8. Add egg whites and lime juice and start to mix in lowest speed then gradually increase the speed
  9. When the mixture start to foamy, gradually add sugar and increase to highest speed
  10. Beat the egg white and sugar until they reach firm peak and just before it reaches stiff peak stage. If you are not so sure, when the mixture start to look smooth and glossy, turn off the mixer and check. Continue mixing if the stage is not there yet but check every 5 seconds so you do not overbeat the egg whites
    The meringue should look silky and glossy
    When you lift the whisks, the batter should look like this
    A closer look, this is what happen if you whisk and then lift up the batter: when you turn the whisk upside down, the peaks will hold but the tips fold back on themselves
  11. Now it’s time to mix the egg whites batter with the egg yolks batter. Take 1/3 of the meringue and add it to the egg yolk mixture. Whisk gently until well combined (don’t worry that you will deflate the batter, this method will make the batter lighter and easier to fold later on)
  12. Add another 1/3 of the meringue to the egg yolks batter, and this time, fold gently with a spatula or a wooden spoon
    Fold the batter in clockwise direction with one hand while the other hand is turning the bowl (also in clockwise direction)
  13. Add the last 1/3 of the meringue to the batter, and again, fold gently with a spatula until well combined
  14. Bang the bowl 4 to 5 times to the kitchen top so the big bubbles can rise to the top and burst
  15. Pour the mixture into the cake pan slowly from one side of the cake pan and don’t turn the cake pan at all. This will help to get rid of big bubbles
  16. Using a chopstick, swirl several times round the cake pan to release any bubbles that are still trapped on the bottom side of the cake pan
  17. Then smoothen the surface of the batter with a spatula
  18. Put the cake pan  in the lowest rack of the oven
  19. Bake for at least 60 to 75 minutes (every oven is different so please check accordingly). I didn’t have problem with the top cracking or browning too soon because it was a big oven and the cake top was quite far from the top heating element, but if you do, cover the top loosely with aluminium foil after the top starts to brown and crack
  20. When it’s done, the top should be brown and springy and will slightly bounce back when you tap with your finger. You can also check by inserting a skewer which should come out clean when the cake is done
  21. Once baking is done, overturn the cake and let it cool. Try to put the cake as far away form the table top because the hot steam will spoil the surface of the cake
    Cover with wet towel to fasten the coolimg process
  22. Using a thin knife (I used my long thin spatula), separate the cake from the sides of the cake pan by pressing the knife as firm as possible to the cake pan
  23. Slice with bread or serrated knife and store the uneaten cake in an airtight container for 3 days, then keep in the fridge after that. It was still nice, soft, and moist even after I put in the refrigerator

Enjoy the cake and have fun baking pumpkin chiffon cake……………….


What’s For Dinner: Fish Yakiniku

This is one of the dish that I choose if I want to serve something easy and quick for dinner. It’s super easy, takes a very short time to cook, and best of all, it is delicious and will definitely will make all the rice in the rice cooker gone very fast.

Beef and chicken yakiniku are very well known dishes from Hoka Hoka Bento, a famous Japanese restaurants with many branches Indonesia, and I used to eat this when I was a little kid. Back then, it was either beef or chicken, but this time, I made the healthier version by using fish.

I am certain that this is not an original recipe from Japan (they don’t use sweet soy sauce in their cooking, do they?), but we, Indonesians, love to add sweet soy sauce in our cooking, so this dish is suitable for our taste.

You can substitute the fish with beef or chicken for this recipe. Since this dish is using tapioca flour to thicken the sauce, it is better to serve while it is still hot.


  1. 800 gr dory fish fillet (cut into 2 x 2 cm)
  2. 5 garlic, minced
  3. 2 thumbs of ginger
  4. 5 tbsp. olive oil
  5. 2 large onion, cut in thin slices
  6. 1 paprika, bite size cut
  7. 5 brown button mushrooms, cut into thin slices
  8. 2 tbsp. Worchester sauce
  9. 1 tbsp. sesame oil
  10. 2 tbsp. rice wine
  11. 200 ml water
  12. salt, to taste
  13. 10 spring onion, minced

Marinate sauce:

  1. 5 tbsp. soy sauce
  2. 2 tbsp. sweet soy sauce
  3. 1 tbsp. oyster sauce
  4. 1 tbsp. sesame oil
  5. 1/4 tsp pepper
  6. 3 tbsp. tapioca flour (if you want the sauce to be not so thick, reduce the amount of tapioca flour to 2 tbsp.)


  1. In a big bowl, mix the fish with all the marinate sauce until well combined and keep in the fridge (not freezer) for about 1 hour
  2. Heat a wok with 5 tbsp. of olive oil
  3. Add ginger and garlic and stir fry until fragrant
  4. Add the fish to the wok and cook until the fish change color
  5. Add mushrooms, water, Worchester sauce, sesame oil, rice wine, salt, onion, and paprika. Cook until the sauce becomes thick and the vegetables are cooked. Add more water if you want to reduce the thickness of the sauce
  6. Turn off the heat, add spring onion, and stir to mix
  7. Serve with chili sauce, hot steam rice, and fresh salad (lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers)

Crispy Corn (Vegetable) Fritters / Bakwan Jagung Renyah

These crispy and crunchy corn fritters are one of my family’s favorite dish. Whenever we went back to my parents house, one of the thing that my mom cooked for us was this dish. Well, it is actually easy to make these fritters, but it takes a lot of time preparing all the vegetables (especially when I amusing fresh corns and carrots), preparing the coating, frying the fritters, and then all the washing too, so most of the time, I do not make corn fritters at home………………….but then there were times when I really wanted to have those fritters, and so I didn’t have any choice than to peel those corns and grated those carrots and minced lots and lots of spring onions to make super delicious corn fritters that were finished within minutes……………………………….


All the hard work was paid off when daddy and the boy kept going into and out of the kitchen because they were impatient waiting for the first batch of corn fritters to be ready. And then they would argue of how to divide the first batch of the crispy fritters because the second batch wasn’t ready yet (I could only fry 4 to 5 fritters with my not so big wok every time). Yes, that was how much everyone loved corn fritters………………………..and of course, the cook aka. mommy would always be the last one who got the chance to finally sit down and eat…………….. 

The recipes for corn fritters for each family might be different. For me, I love the thin crispy fritters like some of my family members. My dad and my sister prefer the thick and not crispy (a bit soft or soggy) ones. The key is actually to manage the amount of flour and water used in the batter. Add more flour if you want the fritters to be soft.

When making corn fritters, one thing that I learnt from my mom is to use lots and lots of spring onion. Spring onion will add flavour to the fritters, so always use spring onion generously. I also always add carrots to make the fritters more nutritious, plus, I love crunchy fried carrots in my fritters.

For the coating, I always use generous amount of garlic and shallots, candlenuts, coriander, and turmeric. That was how my mom always made her fritters, and now I just follow her steps. She said the fritters would taste bland if we didn’t use lots of spices. Besides, all those herbs and spices are good for our bodies.

After I tried several times, the best comparation of flour that works best for me is: use all purpose flour half the amount of rice flour, then use tapioca flour half the amount of all purpose flour. This is by far will result in crispy fritters, even when I keep the batter in fridge (not freezer) for 2 to 3 days, it was still crispy and crunchy when I fried them.

I’ve tried several combination before, but this is the best for me. The batter has to be thick, so add water little by little until you reach the consistency that you want. Veggies already contain water, so I can’t tell exactly the amount of water that you will need in your batter.

Corn fritters are best to be eaten while they are still hot with red or green chili or spicy peanut sauce (you can check the recipe for the peanut sauce in this post).


  1. Corn kernels from 3 corns
  2. 2 carrots, cut in long thin slices
  3. 30 spring onion, minced
  4. 10 red chili padi, cut diagonally in thin slices
  5. 1 large shallot
  6. 10 garlic
  7. 2 tsp ground coriander / ketumbar bubuk
  8. 10 candlenuts (stir fry without oil until fragrant and the colour turn darker) / kemiri disangrai
  9. 2 tbsp. turmeric powder
  10. 1 tbsp. salt, or to taste
  11. 1/2 tsp pepper, or to taste
  12. 20 tbsp. rice flour / tepung beras
  13. 10 tbsp. all purpose flour
  14. 5 tbsp. tapioca flour
  15. 400 ml water (more or less depending on your batter)


  1. Prepare a blender and add shallot, garlic, ground coriander, candlenuts, turmeric powder, salt, pepper, and 200 ml of water. Process until smooth. Transfer the mixture to  big bowl
  2. In the same bowl, add corn kernels, carrots, spring onion, and chili padi. Mix well
  3. Add rice flour, all purpose flour, and tapioca flour to the mixture, then stir to combine well with other ingredients
  4. Add water little by little until you reach the consistency of the batter that you want (I used 400 ml of water). The mixture should be thick but will fall easily from the spoon

    The consistency of the batter
  5. Heat a wok with cooking oil and make sure the oil is hot enough before you fry the corn fritters
  6. Using a soup spoon, scoop 1 spoonful of the batter to the oil and deep fry with medium heat until golden brown in all sides
  7. Serve hot

Indonesian Fishball Pearl Soup / Sup Bakso Ikan Mutiara

This soup was so good and delicious that it made me wonder why I just found out the recipe? We absolutely loved it so much. Too bad I just realized that there was such thing as pearl soup in Indonesia. This soup is originally comes from Banjar, Kalimantan. Kalimantan is one of the big island in Indonesia which us very rich in culinary heritage. Although I was there once and I’ve heard and tried some of the famous dishes from this region, but I never heard of this soup until just recently.

The name of the soup is actually pearl soup or sup mutiara in Bahasa Indonesia. I’m guessing the name comes from the round shape and white colour and smooth texture of the meatballs that resemble pearls. Originally, the meatballs are made of minced chicken, but since I prefer to eat fish than chicken, I substituted the chicken with white fish and thankfully it was still delicious. You can still use minced chicken or replace it with white fish to get the same texture and colour. 

The original recipe also used non sweetened evaporated milk, but I substituted it with cooking cream which was easier to get and I liked the taste of cooking cream better than milk in the soup. Other ingredients that can be put in the soup are carrots, peas, mushroom, macaroni, or other vegetables of your choice. You can also see that most recipe use sausages, but I prefer not to use froze food when I cook my soup, and as much as I can, I always try to only use fresh ingredients for my cooking.

I was also surprised to see the ingredients to make the pearls were included milk powder and butter, as I had never made fishball or meatballs using milk powder and butter before, but I still followed the recipe because I was curious of what the result would be, and thankfully, we all really loved it. The fishballs were soft and very easy to chew.

The ingredients for the pearls might be uncommon, but believe me, it is worth to try as you will get a very different kind of meatballs with different taste than the usual ones. For the best result (white color meatballs like pearls), only use chicken or white fish. The mixture was also very easy to shape into small round shape balls only with the palms of my hands.

There are so many Indonesian dishes that I haven’t explored and I need to broaden my knowledge and cooking experience to try new dishes. So, what is next after this???

Look at the white soup………………so refreshing especially for the rainy days and when you’re not feeling well. This soup also goes well with bread such as grilled garlic bread which I made especially for our dinner and both of the boys (daddy and son) loved it.


For the fishballs (or the pearls): 

  1. 300 gr minced batang / tenggiri / any kind of white fish
  2. 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, room temperature
  3. 1 medium size potato, peel and steam until soft, then mash with a fork until smooth
  4. 2 tbsp. milk powder
  5. 1/4 tsp nutmeg powder
  6. 1 tsp salt
  7. 1/4 tsp pepper
  8. 1/4 tsp sugar
  9. 1 egg

For the soup:

  1. 2 L chicken broth (or you can mix with water)
  2. 1 large onion, cut in thin slices
  3. 5 garlic, minced
  4. 1 large red onion, minced
  5. 2 thumbs of ginger, cut in thin slices
  6. 2 tbsp. olive oil
  7. 5 carrots, cut in bite size
  8. corn kernels from 1 corn
  9. 30 lily flowers or lily buds or golden needles (or you can use any kind of mushrooms of your choice). In Indonesia we know this as “sedap malam” which is very common ingredients to make soup

    Make knots before cooking them for soup
  10. 1 tbsp. salt, or to taste
  11. 1/4 tsp pepper, or to taste
  12. 1/4 tsp nutmeg powder
  13. 5 spring onion, minced
  14. 200 ml cooking cream


  1. Prepare a large pot and add the chicken broth. Bring to boil
  2. Combine all the ingredients to make the fishballs or the pearls in a bowl and mix well
  3. Take 1 tsp of the mixture and roll it in the palms of your hands until smooth to make a small ball. Do this with the rest of the pearl mixture
  4. Drop the pearls one by one into the boiling broth and cook in medium heat until they float
  5. Once they float, scoop all the pearls with a big soup spoon and place them in a bowl. Set aside
  6. Heat a pan with 2 tbsp. olive oil and add ginger, large onion, garlic, and large shallots. Stir fry until fragrant and translucent (might take about 5 minutes or more). Transfer to the pot with the chicken broth
  7. Add carrots, sedap malam or mushrooms of your choice, and corn kernels to the pot. Add all the seasoning to the pot (salt, pepper, nutmeg powder)
  8. Cook until the vegetables are half cooked, than add the pearls back to the pot
  9. When the vegetables are thoroughly cooked, add cooking cream and bring to boil
  10. Add minced spring onion, stir, and turn off the heat. Cover the pot for 5 minutes to continue cooking the spring onion
  11. Serve hot with steam rice and Indonesian rice crackers / keropok (optional)

My Family’s Favorite Spaghetti Bolognese

I don’t cook spaghetti very often. Mostly, we eat rice…………..everyday, but sometimes we also get bored and want something else like spaghetti. My family didn’t like spaghetti back then, but this mama who cooks at home loves spaghetti so much, so she began to introduce this dish to the family, and after a long time, both boys (dad and son) can finally accept eating other source of carbohydrate besides rice, potatoes, and noodles.

Besides aglio olio, this is the one thing that my family likes. Strangely, they never want to order this dish whenever we dine out (for my husband, mostly because it contains beef, and my son never likes eating spaghetti Bolognese outside).

This time, I used chicken to substitute beef because daddy was not allowed to eat red meat for health reason, but this recipe will go well with beef or pork.

The best thing to eat this dish was with garlic bread which made the whole house smelt so nice when I baked the baguette topped with salted butter and minced garlic. It looked like we never had enough of bread whenever I served this on the table. Even my mom who never really liked eating other kinds of food besides Indonesian and Chinese food said this was so delicious.

For the sauce recipe, you can check in my previous post. It is also best to serve with fresh salad with light dressing such as lemon and olive oil or yogurt salad dressing (you can check in my previous post of how to make low calorie and healthier yogurt salad dressing).

For my son, he loved it best when the topping is also covered with melted mozzarella cheese, and I didn’t use my oven to do this as I was too lazy to do that (and also takes time). Since I cooked the topping in a non stick pan, I just added the sliced mozzarella on top and cooked in low heat until it melted and transfer the topping and the cheese on top of the cooked spaghetti, and sprinkled some Parmesan cheese too (the name could be changed to cheesy spaghetti since there was so much cheese on the boy’s plate).


  1. 10 gr / 1 tbsp. unsalted butter
  2. 3 tbsp. olive oil
  3. 1 large onion, minced
  4. 300 gr minced chicken
  5. 5 pieces of breakfast ham, cut into small pieces (optional)
  6. 200 gr brown button mushroom, cut in thin slices
  7. homemade pasta sauce (see the recipe in my previous post and use the whole amount of sauce for 500 gr of spaghetti)
  8. 4 tbsp. tomato paste or tomato sauce (optional)
  9. 3 tbsp. Worchester sauce
  10. 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
  11. 1 tbsp. liquid rock sugar (or any kind of sugar), or to taste
  12. 1/4 tsp pepper, or to taste
  13. 70 gr coriander leaves, minced
  14. 2 tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
  15. 500 gr dried spaghetti (1 package)


  1. In a wok, heat unsalted butter and olive oil and add large onion and garlic. Stir fry until fragrant and soft
  2. Add chicken and ham and stir fry until the chicken turn into white colour
  3. Add mushroom and the sauce
  4. Season with Worchester sauce, salt, pepper, and sugar and cook until the chicken and mushrooms are thoroughly cooked (you can also cook longer if the sauce is still too watery)
  5. Set aside the sauce
  6. Boil water in a large pot and salt the water with at least 3 tbsp. (more is fine), the salty water adds flavor to the pasta. Add spaghetti into the boiling water. As the pasta starts to cook, stir it well with the tongs or wooden spatula so the pasta don’t stick to each other (or to the pot). Follow the cooking time in the package
  7. Drain and generously add olive oil (4 to  5 tbsp. or even more) to the pasta and mix well
  8. Separate the pasta into several portions and add the sauce

Homemade Pasta Sauce From Fresh Tomatoes

This might be different and might not really resemble  the original pizza and pasta sauce recipe, but after trying several times, this is the composition that my family and I like the most.

The taste is somewhat different from ready to use store bought sauce, but by making my own sauce, I know that I only use fresh ingredients and I definitely do not use preservatives. Actually now, we don’t like at all the ready to use pizza sauce in jars from the supermarket shelves, and we prefer homemade sauce because it taste so much better and fresh.

For the sauce, I still prefer to only use fresh tomatoes. There is nothing wrong if you want to use tomato paste or sauce from the supermarket, but just make sure you read the ingredients at the back of the bottles carefully. Price wise, fresh tomatoes were cheaper than tomato paste so I still prefer to use fresh tomatoes.

The problem with using fresh tomatoes is, the colour of the sauce is depending on the colour of the tomatoes. In here, it is not easy to get big ripe tomatoes with dark red colour (and even if I could find ones, they would be very expensive), so I just use whatever tomatoes that I can find in the wet market or supermarket. So if you want to add colour to the sauce, you can add few tablespoons of tomato sauce or tomato paste to your sauce, but that is optional. For healthier version, just stick to fresh tomatoes no matter what the final colour of the sauce will be.

Originally, when making pizza or pasta sauce, we don’t need to add sugar and we can use grated carrot to balance the flavour of the tomatoes, but then again, I will be super lucky to find the very ripe and sweet tomatoes in here, so I add rock sugar to reduce the sourness of the tomatoes.

For me, using dried oregano and basil are not mandatory, and I already tried to replace them with coriander leaves which will give the same flavour and smell. Basil and oregano are incredibly expensive here, so while waiting for my oregano and basil plants to grow up, I usually only use coriander leaves and it always works just fine for me. I also added Worchester sauce (I read somewhere long time ago that we should try to add Worchester sauce to the pizza sauce to increase the flavour, and I really loved the result).

For the sauce, you can choose to blend the mixture until very smooth or just roughly chop and it is up to your preference of how you want the final texture of the sauce to be.

The sauce, when you spread on top of the pizza dough or baguette and bake it or when you use as Bolognese sauce, it will give a really nice flavour and smell. So yummy…………………….

When you are used to eat home cooked food most of the time with the freshest ingredients, you will find out that instant or ready to use sauces or other kinds of ready to eat food will not suit your palate anymore.

The final colour of the sauce is depending on the tomatoes that I use. Sometimes, I bought a big batch of tomatoes and waited for days until they were fully ripen with no luck, so I just used whatever that I had at home at that time


  1. 1 kg ripe tomatoes, each cut into 4
  2. 2 tbsp. olive oil
  3. 10 gr or 1 tbsp. unsalted butter
  4. 1 large onion, minced
  5. 5 garlic, minced
  6. 1 carrot, cut into 5
  7. 10 coriander leaves, minced
  8. 2 tbsp. Worchester sauce
  9. 1/4 tsp salt, or to taste
  10. 1/4 tsp pepper, or to taste
  11. 1 tbsp. liquid rock sugar, or to taste
  12. 2 tbsp. Parmesan cheese (finely grated)


  1. In a large wok, heat olive oil and butter
  2. Add large onion and garlic, stir fry until fragrant
  3. Add coriander leaves and stir fry for about 1 minute
  4. Transfer the mixture to a blender and add cut tomatoes and carrot. Blend the mixture until it reach the consistency that you prefer (you can blend until very smooth or just roughly chop if you still want some small tomato chunks in your sauce)
  5. Transfer the mixture back to the wok add all the seasoning except the Parmesan cheese
  6. Bring to boil and continue cooking until the tomato juice is reduced and the mixture becomes thick. How thick you want the sauce to be is up to your preference. You can turn off the heat once the sauce has reached the consistency of thickness that you want
  7. Add grated Parmesan cheese to the sauce and mix well with a spatula
  8. Let it cool in room temperature before keeping it in containers with lids in the refrigerator. For me, I put the sauce in several Ziploc bags and freeze them because I always make in big batches for further use


My Second Baked Cheese Tart (and It Burnt On Top)

It was one of the exam day and I needed to make something quick for snack, because you know………….when children studying during exam time, they get hungry easily and will ask for food for every 2 hours. So I decided to make these lovely and wonderful tarts because they were easy to make and didn’t take a lot of time (well, not really………………….it took a long time to wash everything especially my pie moulds…………….). 

This time, I still used the same recipe to make the pie because it was very easy and a guarantee for success. Well, although, I had a little difficulty since I used a new oven which was fan forced and had 4 racks altogether and 6 different functions altogether, so I still had to figure out the right setting to bake the pie dough.

For my second try making these tarts, I really wanted to make the top burn just like the ones I saw in the bakeries. So I tried to use the grill function in my oven and I was really happy with the result, they were just like the ones from the bread store.

I used a different recipe to make the filling since I wanted a softer one than my first try. Actually, we couldn’t really taste the difference because we loved to eat the tarts cold, hahaha…………………but it was completely different when they were hot. My son didn’t like to eat tarts with runny filling, so I baked the tarts slowly in low temperature to be able to get the right consistency. I continued to grill the tarts with grill and top heat function in my oven for another 10 minutes to caramelize the top.

It is better to enjoy the tarts warm so you can really taste the softness of the filling, so you can either warm the tarts in the microwave or defrost in the oven (which I did). Somehow, my son liked it better when they were cold, so I usually didn’t bother to warm them unless when I served them for breakfast because I didn’t like to serve cold food for breakfast.

For the pie dough, you can check in my previous recipe which completes with the step of how to make the prefect and super easy pie crust. You can check the recipe in this link here.

The recipe in this post here is for the filling only. 



  1. 25 gr castor sugar
  2. 6 gr corn flour
  3. 1/4 tsp salt
  4. 2 tbsp. milk


  1. 40 gr egg, beaten
  2. 1/2 tsp vanilla essence


  1. 150 gr cream cheese
  2. 25 gr unsalted butter
  3. 80 ml / 1/3 cup of milk


  1. egg yolk, beaten,  for brushing the top of the tart


  1. Carefully remove the pie crusts from the pie moulds and place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Set aside
  2. In a small bowl, combine sugar, corn flour, salt, and milk (ingredient A) and mix well
  3. In another small bowl, beat egg and vanilla essence (ingredient B)
  4. In a heat proof bowl, combine cream cheese, butter, and milk (ingredient C) and place the bowl on top of a bigger cooking pot 3/4 filled with hot water (double boiler method). Cook in low heat and whisk until all are melted and the texture is smooth
  5. Add the mixture of ingredient A and whisk until well combined
  6. Add the mixture in ingredient B and continue whisking in low het until the mixture becomes thick. It my take a while for the mixture to thicken. Turn off the heat, and let it cool slightly in room temperature
  7. Preheat the oven to 200 Celsius or 180 Celsius fan forced
  8. Scoop the cream cheese filling to the pie crust (or you can use a pastry bag)
  9. Brush the top with the egg yolk (ingredient D)
  10. Bake for about 15 minutes
  11. and change the oven function to grill and continue baking for 8 to 12 minutes (turn off the heat when you already achieved the brown consistency that you want)
  12. Serve while the tarts are still warm


Butternut Pumpkin Butter Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting / Cake Labu Madu

This is what happened when there were too much pumpkins in da house. Pumpkins were in season and they were extremely cheap compared to some vegetables that I used to buy, and so I was tempted to buy 3 butternut pumpkins at once without even knowing what to do with them. So I just kept them in the refrigerator while looking for the recipes because I have never ever cooked anything with pumpkins before so this would be my second time after making my butternut pumpkin pudding which I posted the recipe earlier (the second time which I considered as a success since I wasn’t happy with my pumpkin bread and donuts).

After browsing for some recipes, the ones that interest me the most were pumpkin cakes with cream cheese frosting. I had 2 boxes of cream cheese in my freezer which I intended to finish as soon as possible, and my son loved cream cheese so much, so this would be a great combination. I’ve made cream cheese frosting before but failed (I think I used the wrong recipe), so I learnt from my mistake and did more research before making another frosting.

From all the recipes that I saw in the internet, the one that really stood out was pumpkin pound cake. Well, originally, the recipe that I took from nasilemaklover.blogspot had no chocolate layer and cream cheese frosting, I just added them so it didn’t look so plain and had more flavour. Well, I didn’t know how the taste would be, so if anything went wrong, the chocolate layer and cream cheese frosting would be my saviour…………………..

Actually, the cake was already very good even without the chocolate layer and cream cheese frosting, so you can save time and energy by making the original version of the cake only.

And yes, the cake was so good that I was surprised with the result. I’ve never made and taste cake that was made of vegetables, so this was my first time and I was super happy with the result.

It was really……………….really………………..really……………..good! We all just loved it so much. It was one of the best cake that we’ve ever taste and even better than any cakes that we ever bought from the bakeries.

The cake was so soft and light and it was just so yummy, you have to try it yourself to really know how good the cake is. I reduced the amount of sugar from 200 gr in the original recipe to 150 gr because my butternut pumpkin was already sweet and I would add cream cheese frosting which also already contained lots of sugar in it, so the amount of sugar that I used was just perfect.

I started to make cake not so long ago, and even as an amateur like me, I must say that this was not so difficult compared to those cakes that need to beat the egg whites separately (and I still fail miserably baking this kind of cake).

This cake didn’t take a long time to make and the result was amazing. One slice was never enough for each of us. And don’t worry if you don’t like pumpkin, once the cake is done, you will not taste the pumpkin at all, you will just see the bright and beautiful natural yellow color of the cake. The best thing is, it’s not artificial yellow coloring, so it is 100% save to eat.

So, after this, I am thinking of making another cake using vegetables too, such as sweet potatoes (which I had a lot too in my fridge and I still don’t know what to do with them) and carrot (I never eat carrot cake before so I want to try making it).

So, here is the recipe for this lovely and delicious pumpkin cake that we loved so much:


For The Cake:

  1. 150 gr castor sugar
  2. 200 gr butter
  3. 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
  4. 5 eggs
  5. 200 gr butternut pumpkin (without skin and seeds), steam until soft and mash until the texture is smooth with a fork
  6. 300 gr cake flour
  7. 2 tsp baking powder
  8. For the chocolate batter: 1 tbsp. cocoa powder + 1 tsp sugar + 5 tbsp. milk

For The Frosting:

  1. 100 gr unsalted butter, soften
  2. 220 gr cream cheese, soften
  3. 1.5 cup powdered sugar
  4. 1/4 tsp vanilla essence


  1. almond slices
  2. strawberries
  3. grated dark cooking chocolate


For The Cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 180 Celsius or 160 Celsius fan force
  2. Prepare a 9 inch cake pan and line with parchment paper
  3. In a medium bowl, mix well 1 tbsp. cocoa powder, 5 tbsp. milk, and 1 tsp sugar until the batter is smooth and has no lumps. Set aside
  4. Sift flour and baking powder. Set aside
  5. Using a mixer, beat butter, sugar, and vanilla essence until light, creamy, and increase in volume (might take between 3 to 5 minutes)
  6. Add eggs one at a time and mix until well combined and the batter is smooth
  7. Add in 1/3 part of sifted flour and baking powder, and mix until well combined in low speed
  8. Add mash pumpkin, beat until well incorporated
  9. Add remaining flour and mix until just well combined (please remember to always use low speed when you mix the flour)

    The final result of the batter
  10. Take 1/3 of the batter and add the chocolate mixture. Whisk until there are no lumps and the batter is smooth
  11. Pour the yellow pumpkin batter into the cake pan
  12. Pour the chocolate batter on top of the yellow batter. Make a marble pattern using a chopstick. Swirl the chopstick several times until the chopstick reach 3/4 of the yellow batter
  13. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes (me: 55 minutes) or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean
  14. Remove from oven and let cool for 15 to 20 minutes on a cooling rack before removing from the pan

For The Frosting:

  1. Add all the ingredients to the mixing bowl and beat in high speed until frosting is silky smooth, creamy, and fluffy

    The frosting should be like this: light and fluffy
  2. Keep in the fridge (not freezer) in an airtight container while waiting for the cake to cool down
  3. Make sure the cake is cool completely before adding the frosting (I once made mistake by adding the frosting before the cake was cool completely, and it was a disaster as the frosting melted). By the way, I kept my cake in the freezer for 5 to 10 minutes to fasten the cooling process
  4. Whisk the frosting with balloon whisk again before using it on top of the cake
  5. Top with almond slices, strawberry slices, grated chocolate, biscuit crumbs, or any topping that you like
  6. Wait for another 20 minutes for the frosting to set before cutting the cake
  7. Enjoy it with a glass of milk or tea or coffee without feeling guilty because at least there is veggie inside this delicious cake………………..

Butternut Pumpkin and Chocolate Pudding

I seriously didn’t know that I could actually make pudding from vegetables and that it would taste so good. I actually didn’t know that butternut pumpkin existed until recently, and it’s true. I know the big almost round shape yellow pumpkin because I saw them many times in the wet market, but I was never aware of the existence of butternut pumpkin.

My mom never cooks any kind of dishes using pumpkins until now, and she even still has no idea at all of how to cook the pumpkins. Pumpkins are not so popular in Indonesia especially back then when I was still a kid, so it is understandable that my mom never bought and cooked pumpkins.

So recently, butternut pumpkins were in season and I saw a lot of them in the supermarkets near my house, and they were not as expensive as I thought before.

I was tempted to buy and try to make something using the pumpkins, so I  searched for recipes in the internet and I managed to make bread rolls and donuts from butternut pumpkin thrice. When I started……………….I couldn’t stop, so I kept buying the pumpkins without knowing what to do with the pumpkins, hahaha…………….. I couldn’t make bread again since I still had 2 bread containers full of bread.

Luckily, I found butternut pumpkin pudding recipe from Instagram. Oh yes, I saved hundreds of recipe on my Instagram just in case I will need one of them someday……………..although I don’t know when and most of them just stayed in my phone for months…………………..but this one caught my attention immediately and it only stayed for few days in my phone before I finally made it (what a record……………..)

The result was amazing and we loved it so much. We are not a big fan of pumpkins, so I was afraid that we might end up not liking the taste and I had to throw the whole pudding into the dustbin. That was why I added the chocolate pudding to balance the taste just in case we didn’t like the pumpkin pudding. This was my first time making it so I was a bit worry.

Fortunately, it  was so good and I was really in love with my butternut pumpkin pudding even though I ate it without the chocolate pudding. It taste like milk pudding but with a stronger flavour and scent. It was so lovely and I really loved the combination of the yellow and chocolate pudding. Plus, this is also a healthier dessert because it already contains vegetables inside it. The best thing was, the yellow colour in this pudding came from vegetables and no artificial food coloring

All of us had no trouble eating one big slice of this pudding every time, and that proved how much we really loved this dessert. If you don’t have time to make the layers one by one, just pour all the chocolate mixture on top of the yellow mixture, it will save time and energy than doing the layers.


Butternut Pumpkin Pudding:

  1. 300 gr butternut pumpkins (without the seed and the skin), cut into smaller parts (about 2 cm x 2 cm)
  2. 500 ml plain milk
  3. 400 ml water
  4. 175 gr sugar
  5. 7 gr / 1 packet plain agar-agar powder
  6. 1 tsp vanilla essence

Chocolate Pudding:

  1. 500 ml plain milk
  2. 500 ml water
  3. 2 tbsp. sweetened condensed milk (optional)
  4. 170 gr sugar (add the amount of sugar if you do not use sweetened condensed milk)
  5. 2 tbsp. cocoa powder
  6. 7 gr / 1 packet plain agar-agar powder
  7. 1 tsp plain jelly powder (optional)
  8. 1 tsp vanilla essence
  9. 50 gr dark cooking chocolate


To make butternut pumpkin pudding:

  1. Steam butternut pumpkin until soft and let cool slightly in room temperature
  2. With a blender, process pumpkin, agar-agar powder, sugar, and 200 ml of the milk until smooth, then transfer the mixture into a medium size saucepan or a wok
  3. Add the remaining milk, water, and vanilla essence to the pan
  4. Cook in medium and bring to boil while stirring occasionally
  5. Pour 1 cup of the mixture to a pudding mould and put in freezer while we’re making the chocolate batter

To make chocolate pudding:

  1. Using a blender, process together agar-agar powder, jelly powder, cocoa powder, sugar, and 200 ml of milk until well combined (this is to prevent the mixture from getting lumpy when you cook it)
  2. Transfer the mixture to a wok or saucepan and add the remaining milk, water, vanilla essence, and dark cooking chocolate
  3. Bring to boil in medium heat while stirring occasionally
  4. Pour 1 cup of the chocolate pudding mixture on top of the yellow pudding. Put the mould back into the freezer for about 5 minutes (please make sure the layer below is no longer wobbly before you add another layer on top)
  5. Bring to boil the yellow pudding mixture before pouring 1 cup of the mixture on top of the chocolate pudding. Freeze again for another 5 minutes
  6. Bring to boil the chocolate pudding mixture before pouring 1 cup of the mixture on top of the yellow pudding. Freeze again for another 5 minutes
  7. Do this steps until you finish pouring all the pudding mixture
  8. Keep the pudding in the fridge (not freezer) overnight before you cut and serve

Indonesian Siu Mai With Peanut Sauce / Siomay bandung

Indonesian traditional siu mai or siomay in Indonesian language is completely different than any other siu mai that you have knows. It has to be eaten with peanut sauce made form fresh pan fried or roasted peanuts mixed with sweet soy sauce, lime juice, ketchup, and chili sauce. It doesn’t use wrappers (such as wonton or siu mai wrappers) unlike the Chinese style one.

Originally, siomay is made from batang or tenggiri fish paste mixed with tapioca flour (the amount of tapioca flour is depending on how chewy you want your siomay to be). Nowadays, the mixture can also be mixed with chicken, shrimps, and even pork. The siomay that I made this time is a mixture between fish and chicken paste.

The best siomay that you can get is usually the one from the street vendor. Most of the people who live in Jakarta usually grow up with the memory of eating siomay from the sellers who ride bicycles with a basket on the back of his bike going around the neighbourhood. Little kids and adults would wait in front of their houses in the afternoon and hope that the sellers would pass by their houses that day. Nowadays, we can easily buy siomay at the malls or restaurants, but my family’s favorite is still the one that we buy from the street vendor or at the wet market……………….cheap and delicious……………….

To improve the texture of the siomay (chewy but not hard), we add puree chayote which is a vegetable that is still in the squash family. This green vegetable is very easy to get in Indonesia (but not in where I live now) and is very common to use for cooking. Puree chayote will soften the texture of the siomay even though we use lots of tapioca flour. You can use a food processor to process the chicken and fish into a paste, but you can’t mix the tapioca flour in the food processor. You have to mix it gently with a spatula or your fingers. Overmixing the mixture will result in hard texture of the siu mai.

Indonesian siomay is usually also served with bitter gourd, white firm tofu, cabbage, potatoes, and even eggs. Siomay doesn’t have to come in perfect round shape, so don’t bother to shape it perfectly………………..just use 2 spoons to scoop the chicken and fish paste one at a time into the steamer. This is very easy to make and will not take  a long time. The peanut sauce also plays a very important part in this dish. You can always adjust the ingredients of the sauce to your preference.


For the siu mai:

  1. Batang fish fillet 300 gr
  2. Chicken fillet 150 gr
  3. 200 gr puree chayote / labu siam kukus dan haluskan 
  4. 5 garlic
  5. 2 tbsp. fried shallot
  6. 10 spring onion, minced
  7. 1 tbsp. sugar
  8. 1/2 tsp pepper
  9. 2 egg whites
  10. 2 tsp salt
  11. 150 gr tapioca flour
  12. potatoes
  13. white firm tofu

For the peanut sauce:

  1. 350 gr pan fried or roasted peanuts
  2. 4 tbsp. fried shallots (you can use store bought one)
  3. 10 garlic, minced and fried until golden brown, reserve the oil that you use to fry the garlic
  4. 5 lime leaves
  5. lime juice from 8 limes
  6. 1 tsp salt, or to taste
  7. 20 gr palm sugar
  8. 1 tbsp. sugar
  9. 300 ml water
  10. 1 tbsp garlic oil (use the oil that you use to fry the garlic)
  11. 5 red chili (optional)


  1. sweet soy sauce
  2. ketchup
  3. store bought chili sauce in bottles


To make the sauce:

  1. Process all the ingredients in a blender until smooth. Add water if the mixture is too thick
  2. Set aside

To make Indonesian siu mai:

  1. Using a food processor, process batang fish, chicken fillet, puree chayote, garlic, fried shallots, egg whites, salt, pepper, and sugar until they form a paste. Transfer to a bowl
  2. Add minced spring onion and mix well
  3. Add tapioca flour and gently mix with a wooden spatula. Don’t overmix the mixture as it will result in hard siu mai. You can mix with your hand by gently bringing everything together with your fingers
  4. Prepare a steamer and line with parchment paper or banana leave or heat resistant plastic
  5. Scoop some of the mixture with a spoon and push the mixture into the steamer by using another spoon. You don’t have to make a nice and smooth round shape
  6. Cut tofu into triangles and make small holes with a small knife. Fill the holes with the fish and chicken paste 
  7. Cut each potato into 4 and make holes using a small knife. Fill the holes with the fish and chicken paste
  8. Steam for about 30 minutes or until everything is thoroughly cooked
  9. Serve hot with the sauce, sweet soy sauce, ketchup, and chili sauce