Baking for Chinese New Year

Helping my mother to bake cookies for her customers before Chinese New Year is one of the fond memories that I have for my secondary school days. I remember having to come home immediately after class, and sat in front of a hot charcoal grill for hours, churning out boxes after boxes of kuih kapik or helped to shape the cornflakes cookies into small balls before putting them in the oven. It had not been easy but I guess my love for baking started from there.

Post-secondary school days, I've not baked for CNY at all. Mainly because I had to work, and since I usually take leave during CNY, I tend to be busy trying to finish as much work as I can before my annual trip back to Penang. So massive baking during this period of time was simply not possible.

But this year, being the first CNY that I do not have to work (heh, heh!), I've decided to bake some goodies for my relatives in Singapore and Penang. The baking started since last Sunday and it had been a really frantic week of juggling my time between attending Japanese language class in the afternoons, baking at night and doing homework the next morning before going to class again. On those nights that I've not been baking, I'd spent hours cooking pineapple paste, in preparation for baking pineapple tarts the next day.

I've baked 4 types of cookies, and pineapple tarts is the one that I made the most. I've lost count of the amount of ingredients I used, but I think I've used up at least 6 packets of 1kg-flour and lotsa butter!

I'll be back to Penang tomorrow and I will not have internet connection for a week... I will miss reading food blogs and ogling at yummy food pictures in Flickr for sure! :-P Anyway, here's wishing all of you a very happy Chinese New Year in advance and Happy Feasting!

Pineapple Tart Recipe

375g plain flour
40g milk powder
250g butter
50g icing sugar
2 egg yolks
1/2 tsp vanilla essence

Pineapple Paste:
375g pineapple flesh
250g caster sugar
10 cloves

1) To make filling: Cut the pineapple flesh into small pieces. Grind in a blender until fine. Pour into a non-stick pot, add in cloves and cook over high heat. Once boil, reduce to medium heat, cook until thicken, add in sugar immediately, keep stirring until the mixture dry up (about 45 minutes). Dish out, remove the cloves, leave to cool and ready to be used.
2) To make the pastry: Beat the butter and icing sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add in egg and vanilla essense, mix well. Sift flour and milk powder over the batter, then using a wooden spatula, mix until just combined.
3) Preheat the oven to 200 deg C. Place a fluted piping tube into a piping bag, pipe out the dough on a baking sheet. Scoop pineapple paste with a spoon and place on top of the piped dough.
4) Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes, or until the pineapple tarts are golden brown. Remove from oven and leave to cool on rack.


daphne said…
beautiful cookies! Very unique-especially the honey basil and lemom thyme. Happy CNY to u too!! have great trip to Penang.
Have a great trip! Xin Nian Kuai Le.
didally said…
Wow, what unique cookies, honey basil and lemon thyme!

I seen some syrian pics in your flickr. Very adorable.

Happy Lunar New Year!
Tricia said…
Guess you are all ready for the New Year Celebration!! Your bakes looks very-very yummy!!!

Qong Xi Fa Chai!!!
Rasa Malaysia said…
You mentioned corn flakes cookies...I love those. Do you have the recipe. I have been trying so hard to get it to no avail and bought an instant corn flakes cookie mix but they were not good at all. Chinese New Year's cookies are soooo good.
Gong xi fa cai. Lovely cookies. Can u post the recipes too? :D)
Everything looks delicious !
yammylicious said…
gong xi fatt cai.. lovely cookies!! =) wish u hv a great lunar year! =)
Piggy said…
Happy Chinese new year, everyone! Thanks for your comments. :-)

Hi Bee,

I've been trying to look for the cornflakes cookies recipe as well. My mom has lost the recipe and she can't remember how she did it before.