Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread

Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food
Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread - Eat Cho Food

I’ve never ran a marathon before and I don’t really see myself completing one EVER. But after a month of constant workshops I think I can imagine what running one would feel like. Okay maybe a half marathon. At least a 10k! Each weekend for the last month I’ve been practicing my public speaking skills and praying to the dumpling gods that my dough was going to be workable that day. We went up all the way to Sea Ranch and back into the city, lugging bins and SO MANY tote bags filled with essentially a pop up dumpling restaurant. I haven’t had a gym membership since I left my full time job, but I’ve been making up for it by carrying that damn cooler everywhere and standing for hours. I can’t tell if that’s why my back hurts or if I’m finally transitioning into my grandma self.

I’m now on a little dumpling hiatus. My next workshop is not until August 10th, but you should totally buy your tickets now! It’s going to be a wonton party! In the meantime I’m going to spend some quality time with bread dough and work on some easy week night meals! My pleating fingers could use a break and our freezer is literally bursting at the seams with dumplings from recipe testing and workshop leftovers. Someone come over and help me eat all of them! Oh, yeah! Reuben’s parent’s are coming into town this week! So I’ll have some extra taste testers and bellies to fill with dumplings!

I better get working on their welcome treat! Should it be bread???! Milk bread is without a doubt my favorite bread. It probably was before and I never officially declared it until now. Close second is an excellent sourdough, but I could eat milk bread all day everyday. There is something so lovely about it’s airiness and softness that other breads just don’t compare. Challah? Brioche? Maybe. Those breads are like cousins to the milk bread. I haven’t done a side by side comparison… yet. But I’m pretty sure MB would come out on top!

There are a whole bunch of ways to make milk bread. There is the tangzhong method, which requires you to create a quick started by cooking flour and water into a paste. I used in this recipe. And some people like to use dry milk powder in place of some of the actual dairy - planning on trying out that method soon! I’ve grown super fond of the recipe I’m sharing today because you literally throw all the dough ingredients in the bowl of your stand mixer, walk away for 15 minutes while it does all the work for you, and that’s pretty much it! Easy peasy. Flavor-wise, it’s pretty comparable to other methods I’ve tried. However, the key to a better bread flavor is to allow your dough to rest longer. You can either let the dough rest at room temperature for 1-2 hours or pop it in the fridge overnight for it to cold ferment. The result is a bread that tastes less yeasty and has a softer and fluffier texture.

Once you’ve mastered the art of milk bread, the world of flavor combinations is limitless! Today I’m sharing a version filled with cheese and spicy sambal. Are you drooling yet?! Cheese and sambal sound like an unlikely couple, but if you think about it, sambal is just a spicy chili and garlic paste that’s quite similar to Calabrian chilis. Italians pair Calabrian chilis with cheese and carbs all the time! So it’s not surprising that when you roll milk bread dough up with cheese and sambal it ends up tasting like an amazing spicy pizza bread. I’m obsessed with it. The best part is tearing off a chunk while it’s still warm and slathering on some salted butter. OMG. I want to make another one now! Imagine an avocado toast or and egg in a hole using this bread! WOW. I wish I thought of that sooner! Hurry! Bake a loaf and test those carby ideas for me : )


Cheesy Sambal Milk Bread

makes 2 loaves

materials:

1 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
1 egg
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup cornstarch
2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups bread flour
1 package of instant yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup sambal
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese + more for topping

to make the buns:

  1. Combine heavy cream, milk, egg, sugar, cornstarch, flours, yeast, and salt in the bowl of your standmixer fitted with a dough hook. Mix at medium speed (speed setting 4 for KitchenAid) for 15 minutes until a smooth and slightly sticky dough is formed. Stop to scrape down the sides every few minutes. Once dough is form, place in a large bowl lightly greased with oil. Cover with a damp kitchen towel and allow to rest in a warm place for 2 hours or in the fridge overnight, until the dough has doubled.

  2. Line 2 loaf pans with parchment paper.

  3. Scrape out the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into 8 equal pieces. Take one piece of dough and roll it out into a roughly 5”x7” rectangle. Spread 1 tablespoon of sambal on the dough, keeping a 1/2” clean border around the edges. Sprinkle some cheese on the sambal. Fold both the 7” long edges over towards the center and roll the dough into a log. See photos above. Place log in the loaf pan. Repeat process with remaining pieces of dough until each loaf pan is fill with 4 logs. Cover loaves with a damp kitchen towel and allow to proof one last time for 1 hour.

  4. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Brush the tops of the loaves with milk and sprinkle on or grate a bit of cheese on top. Bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes until the tops are deeply golden brown.

  5. Remove the loaves from the oven. Allow to cool in the pans for 10 minutes and then remove to allow to fully cool on a wire rack.

  6. Enjoy with a slice of butter or plain as is!

Matcha Beignets

Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food
Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food
Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food
Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food
Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food
Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food
Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food
Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food
Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food

Is anyone else sluggishly crawling out of bed after the long and awkwardly disjointed weekend? Our July 4th was pretty low-key. We went over to a friend’s house to consume our obligatory hot dog and meet a new adorable puppy, which has a striking resemblance to a lamb. We promptly left before the fog got too chilly and got home with enough time to watch 4 episodes of Stranger Things. I’m going to let you in on a secret… we ordered Dominos for dinner that night and had no regrets! It brought back major 90s/early 00s pizza and movie nights at home nostalgia, minus the paper plates my mom only used for pizza night.

Friday and Saturday were technically work days for me. I was prepping for another private workshop and dinner, so I spent most of my time chopping vegetables to the beat of the Jonas Brothers and painting up some cute menus. After I finished plating the last dish for their dinner, I swiftly packed up my things and had Reuben take me to go get ice cream, which has become a new post workshop tradition! I love it. I got Jeni’s obviously. We ate said ice cream and finished watching the remainder of Stranger Things. SO MANY EMOTIONS.

Finally, Sunday felt like a real weekend for me. So what did we do? We drove to the suburbs! lolololol I’ve been in search of the perfect small size, not awful or too trendy looking bedside lamps, so we drove out to the suburban Home Goods and Target to see what was out there in the world. NOTHING. But we did find a brand spanking new Target that was bright and shiny and the aisles were wide enough for 3 carts to pass though. 3 CARTS WIDE, people!! We were ridiculously happy leaving that Target, despite failing to find a new unnecessary addition to our bedroom. I think it’s just a sign that we probably need to get out of the city more.

Sorry if that all sounded incredibly boring to you. BUT! I’m noticing a little pattern in my recount of this past weekend. And it’s that I think I’m a little basic. Is being considered basic still a relevant thing? Is it still an insult? Or are we all finally allowed to just be our normal Jonas Brothers-Dominmo’s Pizza-Vanilla Latte-Riverdale-Suburban Target loving selves?! I sure hope so because I’m not changing and the new Jonas' Brothers album is excellent. Have I mentioned the Jonas Brothers enough in one blog post?

Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food
Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food
Matcha Beignets - Eat Cho Food

Anyways! I was recently talking to someone who said Matcha is considered basic and played out… what?! People have literally been drinking matcha for a thousand years… and only became majorly popular in 2014/2015. So I don’t think it’s going anywhere. Maybe it’s because Green Tea Lattes are so readily available in every Starbucks and Trader Joe’s makes Matcha flavored everything that we feel an over saturation of matcha things. To be honest though, I’m all for it. I’ve loved matcha forever and I’m still going to love it, even if it makes me basic.

Okay, basic rant over! There isn’t actually any matcha in the beignet dough. The matcha powder is mixed into powdered sugar to make the easiest and prettiest flavored sugar! You could use the matcha powdered sugar on so many things! Brownies, donuts, pies, cakes, churros! Endless options! I used the matcha powdered sugar to top these pillowy soft beignets. I’ve been wanting to try my hand at making beignets for the longest time because my Mom always brings them up whenever I’m home. “Maybe we should make beignets?”has been uttered so many times. I’ll have to finally make these with her when I’m home next month!

I briefly spent a few days in New Orleans many many years ago and remember how amazingly soft the beignets were and how you have to time your breathing with each bite. DON’T EXHALE MID BITE. I most likely had a cup of chicory coffee to sip on while enjoying them too! The recipe for these beignets are fairly traditional and based on this great Joy the Baker recipe. I halved the recipe because beignets are best eaten fresh and I didn’t want to temp myself with all that fried dough being so close to me. I also replace some of the flour with mochiko or glutinous rice flour! When I was testing the recipe, I had some mochiko flour sitting on the counter leftover from baking some mochi muffins and I was like, “why not?!” The result is a magically soft and fluffy dough with the most beautiful and slightly chewy texture. I was hooked. If you don’t have mochiko flour, don’t sweat it! You can just use 2 whole cups of all-purpose flour instead.

Gosh, just writing about these beignets make we wish I had a plate full of them and a warm matcha latte sitting next to me!

Thanks, Aiya Matcha for sponsoring this post!


Matcha Beignets

makes about 18 beignets

beignet materials:

3/4 teaspoons active dry yeast 
2 tbsp white sugar + 1 pinch
⅓ cup warm water
¼ cup whole milk
1 large egg
1 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
¼  teaspoon salt
1 ½ cup AP flour, plus more for dusting
½ cup mochiko flour
Vegetable oil, for greasing the bowl and deep-frying

matcha powdered sugar materials:

½ cup powdered sugar
1 tsp Aiya Culinary Grade Matcha Powder

steps:

  1. In the bowl of you your stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, add yeast, pinch of sugar, and warm water. Give it a quick stir and allow to sit for 5-10 minutes until foamy. In a separate bowl, whisk together milk, egg, butter, salt, and 2 tbsp of sugar. Add the milk mixture to the yeast. Stir the yeast mixture on low speed while gradually adding the flour and mochiko flour. Increase speed to medium and beat for 4-5 minutes, until the dough is smooth. Dough will still be a little sticky.

  2. Place dough in a lightly greased bowl. Toss dough ball in the oil so that it is completely coated. Cover the dough in plastic wrap or a damp paper towel. Allow dough to rest at room temperature for 2-3 hours or in the refrigerator overnight. Dough should double in size.

  3. Heat 1”-2” of oil in a heavy bottom pot or cast iron skillet over medium heat. 

  4. Dust a clean work surface with flour. Place dough on the surface and sprinkle a bit of flour over the dough so it doesn’t stick. Roll out the dough until it’s about ¼” thick. Cut into 2” square pieces.

  5. Once the oil is hot, at 360 degrees or test heat with a scrap piece of dough, fry the beignets in batches. Fry on one side for 60-90 seconds, until golden brown. Flip and fry the other side for another 60 seconds. Transfer beignets onto a wire rack set on a baking tray and allow to cool slightly. Repeat with remaining dough.

  6. Whisk/sift together powdered sugar and matcha powder. Dust the warm beignets with matcha powdered sugar and enjoy!

Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles

Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles - Eat Cho Food
Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles - Eat Cho Food
Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles - Eat Cho Food
Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles - Eat Cho Food
Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles - Eat Cho Food

The very first popsicle I ever made was in the early 90s, when I was a walking bowl cut on a stick. Here is the exact recipe I followed...

  1. Pour 1 can of Sunkist Orange Soda into a ice cube tray.

  2. Cover the ice cube tray with plastic wrap and stick a toothpick into each ice cube.

  3. Freeze until solid.

  4. Enjoy while watching Pokemon with your brother.

Gosh, I loved those orange soda popsicles. I was always an orange soda kid. Grape soda was and still is disgusting. I’m not sure if I saw a kid on public access tv make them or if it was a pre-Eat Cho Food original creation. Childhood summers were so blissfully simple. My brother and I would spend our summer days at the restaurant when we were little, watching TV, flying kites in the back parking lot with my grandpa, making play dough characters, and roller blading in the dining room if there weren’t any customers around. When we got a little older we were able to stay home by ourselves. We still watched a lot of TV, made snacks, played with our backyard neighborhood friends, and made up silly game to entertain ourselves. Oh and we consumed lots of popsicles, Rita’s Ice, Mitchell’s Ice Cream, and Apple Cart soft serve! I’m going home again in August and I’m sooooo looking forward to it actually feeling like summer and eating all the ice cream.

In the meantime SF it is a consistent 65 degrees, which is that weird in between weather where it’s chilly enough to enjoy a bowl of noodle soup but also warm enough to have a popsicle in the afternoon. It’s sort of like my current outfit of shorts and a pullover sweater. I didn’t say I was a fashion blogger…

ANYWAYS. I like knowing that I have these frozen treats waiting for me in the freezer just in case a 100+ degree day pops back up again! Similar to my orange soda popsicles, these Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles are incredibly easy to make. I trust that my 6 year old self would have been able to make these! I just might have needed the help from a trusted adult to open the can of lychees.

Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles - Eat Cho Food
Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles - Eat Cho Food
Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles - Eat Cho Food

If you want to use fresh lychees you could totally do that. But the beauty of using canned lychee is that you already have a delicious lychee simple syrup waiting for you and you didn’t have to do anything except buy it! It’s a little too sugary sweet on it’s own for my own taste, so I dilute the syrup with a little bit of water. The popsicle molds are filled wth lychee and raspberries and if you’re using a standard popsicle mold, the fruit should stay in place due to friction. Pour the syrup mixture over the fruit, stick some popsicle sticks in and let them freeze for a few hours until they're solid. I love the color and appearance of the popsicles once they are frozen solid. The raspberry juice bleeds just a little to give the popsicles a light blush color. You could use any berry you have on hand instead of raspberries, but what I love about the combination of raspberries and lychees is that the berries are tart and bright to balance the simply sweet flavor of the lychee.

Don’t be fooled by the addition of lychee in the recipe. These popsicles are so simple and take almost no time to make. That way you have more time to go play outside, fly kites, or watch Pokemon with your sibling!


Lychee and Raspberry Popsicles

makes 10 popsicles

materials:

1 20oz can of lychees in syrup
4 oz raspberries
1 cup water

popsicle sticks

steps:

  1. Remove lychees from the syrup and set aside.

  2. Pour remaining lychee syrup into a large measuring cup. You should have about 1 1/2 cups of syrup. Add 1 cup of water to the syrup and give it a quick mix. Set aside.

  3. Add a few lychees and raspberries into your popsicle molds. Cut lychees and berries in half if needed. Fill each mold with the lychee syrup mixture. Add popsicle sticks and freeze until solid.

  4. Once solid, run the popsicle mold under hot water for a few seconds to help release. Enjoy!