[RECIPE] Vegetarian Greek Moussaka

I love cooking, but my creations tended to be more on the simple side of things, if one did not count making baked goods from scratch, because I would be lying if I said those aren’t time consuming. I blame this on the fact that I began to cook in college. Even so, I’ve always harbored a wish to tackle and conquer more complicated dishes.

The other day, I came across a recipe for moussaka – Greek moussaka, to be exact. In theory, it seemed to be fairly simple: layers of roasted eggplant interspersed with a tomato “meat” sauce topped with béchamel sauce and shredded Parmesan. On the other hand, the steps involved meant that there were more chances to make mistakes. Still, I endeavoured to at least try, even though it would mark the first of many things…

Though I have cooked with eggplant before, I have never roasted them. In addition, eggplant is one of those things where it’s either a hit or miss; either it comes out well, or there’s something off about it (perhaps the slight bitterness from the seeds?). Then there are those moments it just comes out, and you don’t really know if it’s good or bad. I’ve also never made a sauce with a French name before and to be quite honest, I’ve never made something that required a roux base, either. Well, good thing I enjoy challenges – plus, I had the entire kitchen to myself for the 4-5 hour undertaking.

Once I completed it, I realised something: the only thing daunting about this dish is the fact that it is time consuming. The preparation of the eggplant, the roasting of the eggplant, the making of the “meat” sauce and the béchamel, not to mention the assembling, and finally, the baking of the moussaka as a whole. I’m happy to say that, yes, it is worth it, because it came out rather well and pleasing to my taste buds… if not all that visually pleasing due to the sputtering of the sauce underneath.

Out of the Oven!

I can’t help but think of “lasagna” when I see it… but it tastes a bit more exotic. 🙂

Dig in!

Continue reading


[RECIPE] Green Tea Bundt Cake

I love tea. I love desserts. Bundt cake – or, really, any cake – fits under the aforementioned category. Green tea Bundt cake fits under both the aforementioned categories. Hence, when I came across this recipe, I froze – I had to make it. Plus, it was intriguing: the only liquids used were sour cream/Greek yoghurt, eggs, olive oil, and flavoring extracts. I just had to!

The Before!

On another topic that slightly veers off… it always amused me how there’s a cake named after the fact that it’s baked in a ring-shaped pan – a Bundt cake pan. Either way, cake is cake and I guess a cake shaped a certain way a lot more festive! Not to mention amusing to those unfamiliar with it…

Friend A: What’re you eating?
Friend B: A bundt cake.
Friend A: What’s that?
Friend B: A cake shaped like a Christmas wreath.
Friend A: …right.

Either way, I gobbled it up!

Last Bite!

Continue reading

[RECIPE] Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

I love food. I have not encountered a food that I absolutely hated, though I admit I have preferences (one cannot be perfect, after all).

Every once in a while, I would encounter an intense craving for a certain food: a tomato-based pasta dish, the unique amalgamation of spices found in Indian cuisine (something I have yet to come near to mastering), or the fragrance of some food imbued with green tea. This time, I suddenly wanted a Mediterranean favorite of mine: hummus. Luck was on my side — I found myself free this weekend and off I went…

Hummus at an AngleIn truth, my mom has made hummus before, but it never quite hit the mark like store-bought hummus did for me. However, I was willing to take a chance and I’m glad I did! I must say that I succeeded… and I will never buy store-bought hummus again. (Unless I find myself in a dire situation that I need hummus right then and there.)

Continue reading