Sunday, August 22, 2004

Joy of Baking
{adventure#03}Chocolate Snow Ball

I have been missing a few home food lately. The Brunei delicacy that I miss most is a sweet round and white floury ball usually coated with icing sugar or caster sugar called kuih mur (or kuih makmur).

Kuih mur is more of an east malaysia/brunei delicacies. I havent seen it in West Malaysia nor in Singapore. It is a Chinese new year or Hari Raya (Muslim's new year) yummies. If you go around visiting during the new year period (both chinese and malay), kuih mur is one sweets that is seen on every single household's table.

It really is a type of cookies that has a buttery melt-in-your-mouth texture. It's incredibly sweet too but let me assure you, it is certainly very very more-ish. I havent had any pictures of kuih mur but check out Jo Deli's Bakery for a recipe of kuih mur.

I really would love to get my hands on kueh mur but I lack a few ingredients at home. Then i stumbled upon leilako's ko kitchen and found a recipe of chocolate snowball. she described this cookie has a 'ru kou ji san' (spread-in-your-mouth texture). The description seems very similar to kuih mur plus the ingredients are all on hands. So yup, chocolate snowball it is to soothe my homesick tongue.

♥ foodies date: 21 August 2004
♥ where: pinkcocoa's kitchen

♥ chocolate snow ball
*ho ho ho*
*merry christmas*
Somehow the chocolate snowball has a very Christmasy image to me. And the fact that it is called "snowball" only makes it more of a christmas goodies.

Chocolate Snow Ball
75g cake flour
10g unsweetened cocoa powder*
35g chopped walnuts (roast @ 130c for 30min then chopped to tiny bits)**
65g unsalted butter, softened
25g icing sugar* (snow sugar)
icing sugar, extra for sprinkling

make sure everything is at room temperature.

1. Whisk together cake flour and cocoa powder. Make sure the cocoa powder is well distributed into the cake flour. Sift together. Set aside.
2. In a mixing bowl, whisk butter and icing sugar until it is a little pale, but not too fluffy.
3. Mix in chopped walnuts
4. Sift in the cake flour and cocoa powder into the butter mixture. Mix until it resembles a soft dough.
5. Place the dough on a sheet of cling wrap and roll to 1 inch thick. Leave it in the fridge for an hour.
6. Preheat oven to 180c. Line baking tray with greaseproof baking paper.
7. Bring dough to room temperature (about 5min). Using a knife, divide the dough into bite size piece. Roll using hand each portion of the dough into rounds of about 1.5cm***
8. Place on tray at 3cm interval and bake for about 15-18minutes, depending on size.
9. Generously sprinkle icing sugar over hot cookies. To coat the bottom, simply shift each cookie to its right or left onto an empty space where there's icing sugar sprinkle. Make sure the sugar is sprinkled on when the cookie is hot, otherwise the sugar might not stick to the cookie once the cookie has cooled down.

Makes 29 snowballs
i manage 25 bite-size snowballs without the walnut.

*this recipe is highly adaptable using different ingredients. try using coffee powder or even mocha powder for a different taste.
** i omitted the walnut since i have none on hand plus i dont really enjoy nuts. i think other sort of nuts or even dried fruits would be nice too.
*** shorten the cooking time to 13-15min if you flatten the cookie a little.

♥ ready for some sprinkling action
As usual, i twitched the recipe a little. I rolled the dough into cylindricals instead of rounds then flatten the dough using a fork. i am treating the dough like gnocchi. :p i was hoping the trench could pick up more icing sugar and it did! it also gives the cookie a nice shape. at least it is more interesting than the normal rounds.

on my last few cookie dough, i flatten them out into very thin and large pieces, like making a dumlping wrapper. into the centre, i placed a rum-soaked raisin and wrap the raisin up. ta-da! rum and raisin chocolate snowball!

the dough is very delicate. i find the warmth from my hand was enough to melt the dough. the situation tends to get a little sticky once the dough returns back to room temperature. if this happens, chuck the dough back into the fridge for a few minutes and then continue to work with it. what i did was i cut the dough into half and chuck one-half back into the fridge, working with only one-half. once the first half was in the oven, i continue with the second hand.

♥ sprinkling fun!
as a chocoholic, i would never pass by a chance for me to consume more chocolate so out came chocolate drinking powder (from haigh's too!).
top to bottom:
normal icing sugar
chocolate drinking powder
cinammon icing sugar

chocolate and cinammon has always been an interesting combination. i think i am in love with cinammon at the moment. i have been adding it to almost all my baking projects! this time i mix in about 1/4 tsp of cinammon into a large tbsp of icing sugar. the result was an icing sugar with a very slight taste of cinammon.

♥ cooling and more sprinkling or snowing!
i did have a little bit of problem with the icing sugar. the recipe actually calls for icing sugar that is damp-resistance. i havent heard of this type of icing sugar. not sure about the correct term for this type of icing sugar too. anyway the icing sugar actually melts on the heat of the cookie so i had to keep sprinkling and sprinkling on more and more icing sugar. i can see my weigh piling up more and more too!

♥ eat me! eat me!
the verdict:
the snowball in fact does have a spread-in-your-mouth consistency. they taste very nice. the ball without the snow is bittersweet. the addition of icing sugar balances out the bitterness.

after trying out the three different sprinkles, i quite like the normal snowball. the chocolate powder snowball was alright, not very sweet. this is the one to go if you are after a not-so-sweet chocolatey taste. the cinammon didnt have too much interaction with the snowball. as with the rum and raisin chocolate snowball, the comment was that there wasnt enough raisin inside!

unfortunately it doesnt resemble my much-loved kueh mur. but then again it presses on the idea of a chocolate kueh mur. *yum yum* i can see this recipe is a keeper. i would imagine it makes a very good present on special ocassions too!