Smiling my way through the kitchen

Smiling is good. Laughter is said to be great for your health and most of the time, people like associating themselves with happy people because it makes sense – being with someone happy will give you good vibes!

not the most flattering photo but this is what I look like when I laugh

You can choose to smile and be positive about bad situations or you can choose to frown and be upset – so why not choose the happier path? This is really cliché but I personally think it’s true. 

What I have realised recently is that, a smile on your face actually makes a huge difference in your mindset and attitude towards a stressful situation. It’s something simple but a study has shown that smiling actually does help!

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Making: Quick (Lazy) Apple Tart

You know the thing with Friday nights? It’s usually the last working day of the week. Now, I really enjoy my job but I always feel liberated when I walk out of the doors of my workplace because I’m always excited to be able to do what I want to do, at my own pace, for 2 whole days! Yes, there are the boring daily chores as well but… Friday night! Weekend! I have really come to appreciate the weekend ever since I started work about a year ago because it usually means home baking time! (No partying for me)

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A couple of Fridays ago, I came home and I felt really energetic, which is unusual because I’m usually exhausted after a long day of standing and running around at work. I wanted to bake something really badly but it was late and I didn’t want to stay up too much. So again, I had a look around my kitchen and just made do with whatever ingredients I had on hand to make something really simple.

Frozen puff pastry, apples, eggs, almond flour, sugar, butter… done!

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Tutorial: How to Pipe Buttercream Roses

Hello! Happy Monday, everyone!

My buttercream flowers class post has been one of my most popular posts since I published it and many Google search terms also lead to that post. This shows that many of you are actually very interested in learning about piping roses!

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With that in mind, I decided to make quick video on how to pipe buttercream roses using Italian meringue buttercream for you all!

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Sometimes, love just isn’t enough.

It’s true. Sometimes, love just isn’t enough to bring you across the difficult times in the kitchen.

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You could love what you’re doing but it may not take you to where you want to be. The love for what you do usually is one of the basis for success. Without it, you won’t have the drive to enhance your skills and gain more experience. However, love can only take you this far.

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Making: Variations to the original chiffon cake

I love a good chiffon cake – light, fluffy and yummy. They’re not hard to make once you master the basics of whipping the egg whites to the right consistency, folding it in properly and then ensuring your oven temperature is correct.

A few months ago I posted my trial of a Gula Melaka chiffon cake recipe that I found online but I commented that it didn’t turn out as well as I expected it to be. After making a few more chiffon cakes after that, I feel that it isn’t my skill that was the problem, I think that perhaps the recipe did actually need a lift from baking powder due to the heavy nature of some of the ingredients (coconut milk & gula melaka).

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Since then, I’ve tried out a vanilla chiffon cake, a lemon chiffon cake and an Earl Grey chiffon cake and I would like to share the simple ways you could try to modify a basic chiffon cake recipe!

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New Year, New Me?

Happy February, everyone! How have you all been in the past month? I hope everything has been well and that 2016 has been kind to all of you.

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When I decided to go on a blogging-free month, I had such high hopes for myself in terms of the work that I would be doing to this website behind the scenes. There are so many things on the backend that I would have liked to change but it just did not happen. For one, I simply do not have the expertise in making the changes. Html and the relevant knowledge regarding migrating websites and such are not part of my interests. Therefore, it was harder for me to concentrate when I read FAQs and tutorials online. So, nothing much happened.

What was within my skill set though, was to change the About section on this website. I feel that I have grown & therefore the website has also evolved over time and it is only fair that I updated that section. Small steps, small steps.

Anyway, I did think about my plans for petite-patissiere.com, and how I want to proceed from here for 2016 at least and here are my plans.
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The Beginning of a New Year

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Happy new year, everyone! I hope all of you have had a good break over the holidays (if applicable) and are all refreshed and ready to face the new year.

If you have been following my blog, you would have noticed that I’ve slowed down a little in terms of updating towards the end of last year. That is mainly due to work getting a lot busier at the end of the year and it will continue to be hectic in January.

Other than that, my family have started their holidays in Malaysia so I’ve also been busy spending time with them over the weekends. Throughout the year, my family members are all scattered around the world so I do treasure the times when we are all together in the same country (or region) at the same time.

I have decided to take a break from blogging in January because of the above reasons, and to also take a step back and think about my plans for this website in 2016. Hopefully I will come back in February with more fresh ideas to share with all of you!

Life 101: “Anything can happen, at any time!” 

  
“Anything can happen, at any time… What do I do now? Should I be doing this to avoid that?” 

The quote in the title may seem blatantly obvious to you about how life works, but at a point in 2014, this was my mindset and it really affected me negatively. I felt so uneasy and paranoid that I just couldn’t live properly. In one of my sessions with my psychiatrist back then, I shared it with her and she said to me, “yes, May Ling, that is true”, but there are different ways to look at that phrase. 

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Learning: Korean Buttercream Flowers – Nana Class

Edit: I have since been practising and made a short video on how to pipe roses!

I am always on a hunt for new ideas and Instagram is the first place I go to get some inspiration. Recently, I’ve seen a lot of buttercream flower cakes and they’re very pretty! After a few YouTube videos, I decided that I needed a proper class to master the basics. 

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One of the Instagram accounts I always swoon over is NanaCake’s. Her photos are beautiful, flowers gorgeous and arrangement are always amazing. She also does classes all over the world so I was keeping my fingers crossed for when she would announce a Singapore or Malaysia class!

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Making: Dark Chocolate Eclairs with Cocoa Streusel

“What would you like for dessert?” I asked my Boyfriend.

“Eclair!” He replied.

So eclair it was! I haven’t had much luck in perfecting pate a choux, every batch seems to look different but I was determined to get this right!

I vaguely remember the textures of the choux paste to look out for in both Eclairs and choux puffs. One is softer than the other. So with this vague memory that I retained from class two years ago, I decided to venture into the eclair territory this week to test my skills (and luck) in making pate a choux!

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