April 29, 2011

Alessandra's Feijoa and Lemon Zest Cordial

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Feijoas in the orchard

Feijoa is a treat in Autumn when other fruit trees start stripping their leaves off. They are hardy and versatile, and the fruits are so popular amongst children (adults, too!). Mind you, we have 2 small buckets a day, and they just are gone within minutes, enjoyed fresh.

I love the scent. I love the creamy texture. The taste of it reminds me of Soursop (annona muricata) combined with the sweetness of pineapple. Now, one thing about soursop that I notice is important, that it is believed to cure cancer. My father who is suffering from tongue cancer is now consuming it each day. We are hoping it works for him as he does not want to have chemotherapy anymore.

Feijoa and Lemon Cordial-2

I made Feijoa shortcake last year, and this year I have frozen some of the fruits and also made Alessandra's Feijoa and Lemon Zest Cordial. It is so refreshing, even when we drink it warm. I don't only use the feijoa zest, but all the peels leftover after I froze the flesh. Taste so good! Thanks for the idea and recipe, Alessandra.


Feijoa [acca sellowiana]

Buah dengan bentuk menyerupai jambu biji atau jambu batu ini merupakan buah-buahan musim gugur yang digandrungi oleh anak-anak. Bukan saja aromanya yang menawan, tetapi juga rasa buahnya yang manis membuat buah ini sangat segar ketika dinikmati seperti adanya, baik disendok langsung dari buahnya, dibikin jus buah, atau menjadi bahan tambahan cake, seperti posting saya tahun lalu: Feijoa shortcake.

Feijoa buds

Feijoa flowers

Dimulai dari kuncupnya yang ketika mengatup seperti bentuk cengkeh muda dan ketika mekar menyerupai bunga pohon Pohutukawa atau yang populer disebut dengan New Zealand Christmas tree, pohon feijoa akan tumbuh menjulang hingga 2m-3m.

Kami menanam sekitar 40 rumpun pohon feijoa yang kami jadikan pembatas dan penangkal angin (windbreak) di sepanjang orchard (kebun buah-buahan). Semua pohon masih muda, tetapi sudah memberikan buah-buahan yang cukup banyak di setiap musim gugur. Dalam sehari, kami akan mendapatkan satu hingga dua ember penuh buah feijoa, yang kira-kira beratnya antara 5-10kg per hari.

Tidak ada perlakuan khusus dalam merawat pohon-pohon ini karena mereka termasuk tanaman hardy, kuat dan tidak gampang terkena penyakit. Namun di setiap musim panas, kami selalu mengontrol hama bronze beetles yang selalu datang menggerogoti tunas-tunas muda.

Tahun ini saya membuat Feijoa dan Lemon Cordial, resep Alessandra Zecchini, salah satu teman blogger dan selebriti kuliner di Selandia Baru, selain membekukan 5kg feijoa untuk dinikmati kelak di musim dingin. 

Feijoa and Lemon Cordial

Membuat cordial sebetulnya gampang-gampang saja, karena yang dibutuhkan hanya gula, air, dan buah-buahan itu sendiri. Saya suka membuat lemon atau lime cordial meskipun tidak sering karena saya lebih membudayakan minum air mineral atau air putih daripada minum-minuman manis. Namun untuk sebuah treat, why not.

Feijoa and Lemon Cordial-fresh from the orchard

Yang dibutuhkan adalah feijoas, lemon, gula dan air. Anda bisa melihat takaran resepnya di blog Alessandra disini. Takaran gula boleh ditambah jika Anda ingin cordial lebih kental dan lebih manis.

Feijoa and Lemon Cordial-Zesting

Anda bisa mengupas kulit lemon dan feijoa seperti foto di atas, atau dengan mengupasnya seperti mengupas kulit apple. Lebih banyak bagian kulit yang terpakai, akan lebih beraroma cordial Anda. Rebus semua bahan hingga gula larut dan cairan mengental. Saring, lalu masukkan dalam botol. Saya cenderung mengendapkan kulit feijoa dan kulit lemon hingga cairan mendingin, dengan demikian aromanya akan lebih kuat tertinggal dalam cordial.

Untuk penyajiannya, cordial dilarutkan dahulu dengan air. Tambahkan irisan lemon atau irisan feijoa ketika suka. Daun mint segar juga akan menambah kesegaran rasa cordial ini. 

Selamat menikmati!

April 14, 2011

iPhoneography #22: Bolkus Mekrok

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Bolkus Mekrok

Bolu kukus is an Indonesian traditional steamed cupcake. I personally am not really fond of them. I preferred lemper rather than bolu kukus, but now I am curious. The term 'mekrok' is literally blooming. In this case, the surface of the cupcakes when successfully steamed will be cracked wide open, like someone is laughing from ear to ear. I have tried many times, with very little knowledge about how to, and failed many times, too. Like these cupcakes:


The surface of the cupcakes are not quite cracked and wide open. It's just like someone is timidly smiling at you.

I have made notes out of failures. One of them is the requirement of deep steamer. I need it for this work, as when the cupcakes are rising, they tend to touch the lid. That, perhaps, causes the cupcakes stay 'frowning'. But, then one of NCC members gave a suggestion to use anything that can hold the cupcakes while steamed, while still get a lot of steam from inside the steamer. I thought hm, ramekins can do that, but they will be too high if you put them upside down, so I just place the cupcakes inside the ramekins. This is just like bain marie. And, it works!

Bolkus Mekrok Aneh

Looking at them, I came to a thought: why don't they have that neat crack like these ones displayed here? Beats me. I don't really know what happen to them. Perhaps they just want to laugh out loud.

The recipe can be found at Hesti's or Prehati's. And this is the recipe I translated in English, in case you want to make it, too.

2 buah telur (2 eggs)
1 sdt emulsifier (1 tsp emulsifier)<-- I NEVER use it
250 gr gula kastor (caster sugar)
250 gr terigu kunci biru (plain flour) <-- I use gluten-free mix, same amount
50 gr maizena (cornflour)
80 gr DCC dilelehkan (dark chocolate, melted)
200 cc santan instan (coconut milk) <--- I use sparkling grape juice
Pasta coklat secukupnya (chocolate paste) <--- I NEVER use it

Preheat the steamer (simmer). Line the cupcakes tin with paper. Beat eggs, sugar and emulsifier until thick. Add in wet ingredients a little at a time, fold in flour, chocolate, and wet ingredients (including melted dark chocolate) while the machine running in high speed. All this beating takes 15 minutes from the beginning till finished. Pour the batter in the tin about 7/8 full. Steam for 20 minutes.

April 12, 2011

iPhonegraphy #21: Sop Kaki Sapi

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Sop Kaki Sapi

Indonesia enjoys soup not only in the rainy season, but also in dry season. It is a menu you can find in almost any food stalls, cafes or restaurants. Sop Kaki Sapi is made from cows shank or shin bones, mixed with vegetables, such as potatoes and carrots. The addition of fresh spice, like a cinnamon quill and nutmeg, is giving this soup a kind of soothing and comfy dish. With our home-kill cows, so fresh and so much flavour comes within, I don't think I would want anything else at the moment. It is hearty by itself.

Sop Kaki Sapi-2

April 10, 2011

iPhoneography #20: Cap Cay

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Cap Cay is an Indonesian-Chinese stir fry. Very easy to make, delicious, and healthy. You can go vegetarian or not, you can't go wrong. Some people use yuba or dried tofu skin, or tofu itself, and others will go a complete freak like I do: vegetables, prawns, chicken, and beef. Meatballs or fishballs can be used as an addition, too. So, it is your personal choice.