Rustic Crusty Bread


Simple soft and crusty bread recipe baked in a Dutch Oven.  Inspired by techniques shared by Marilyn Chow from her Facebook on baking and How to Make Bread by Alex French Guy Cooking.  However, I am using my Focaccia recipe instead.

If you have any questions regarding this recipe or any other post, please leave me a comment in the “LEAVE A COMMENT” link and I will reply you as soon as possible.



Yield:  1 Round bread




400g bread flour

250g water (room temperature or lukewarm water)

2 tsp instant yeast

1 tbsp + 1 tsp sugar (I used brown sugar)

1 ½ tsp salt

18g olive oil (approx. 1 ½ tbsp.)


Utensils:  Dutch oven (cast iron skillet)




  1. Add all ingredients (first add salt, flour, sugar, yeast, olive oil and lastly 250g water) into the bowl of stand mixer. Using the dough hook on a stand mixer, knead until the dough comes together and achieve window pane stage (when stretch the dough you should be able to see thin membrane). It takes around 10 to 15 minutes. If the dough is too dry, add 1 tablespoon of water at a time. Some bread flour absorbs more water.
  2. Let the dough complete the first round of proofing in the same bowl, about 60 minutes until double in size in a warm and dark place.  The best place is in an off oven.
  3. Transfer the dough to a floured table top and fold few times to centre and turn upside down.  Shape into a bowl and transfer the dough into a big bowl with parchment paper.  Let the dough rise for second proofing about 45 to 60 minutes or until double in size.
  4. 30 minutes before baking, pre-heat the Dutch Oven with lid on at maximum temperature, 250C.
  5. Sprinkle the dough with some flour, then slash the dough with razor blade at your desired pattern.
  6. Transfer the Dutch oven from oven and open the lid carefully.  Gently drop the dough with parchment paper into the Dutch oven.  Close the lid and return back to oven.  Bake for 30 minutes at 230C.  After 30 minutes, remove the lid and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes until the desired colour.
  7. Let it cool in cooling rack.



Bread crust stays crispy while the bread still warm.  However, it turns soft once it cools down.  To get back the crispy crust, just put the bread in a hot oven for 10 to 15 minutes to reheat or toast it.

Sticky Rice Cake with Mung Bean Paste


I was so tempted to make this rice cake after having it at one of Phuket’s night markets sometime ago.  However, I had no idea how the dough was made until I found this recipe on Omnivore’s Cookbook Blog.  I used a homemade mung bean paste filling instead of red bean.

If you have any questions regarding this recipe or any other post, please leave me a comment in the “LEAVE A COMMENT” link and I will reply you as soon as possible.





Yields: 12




Mung Bean Paste Filling:

140g mung bean/green beans (split without skin)

60g brown sugar

20g coconut oil or vege. Oil

2 pandan leaves, tight into a knot



250g glutinous rice flour

220g to 240g water


1 tbsp oil for pan fry

80g roasted white sesame seeds





Mung Bean Paste Filling:

  1. Rinse mung beans four to five times then soak in clean water for at least 1 hour.
  2. Steam soaked mung beans with Pandan leaves for 30 to 45 minutes or till soft over the medium heat.
  3. Remove from steamer. While beans are still hot, add sugar and oil.  Then mix and mash with fork until become a paste.
  4. When the paste cool down, shape into small balls (31g each) and keep aside.


Prepare the dough and how to shape:

  1. Add the glutinous rice flour to a big mixing bowl.  Slowly add the water few times.  Using your hand to mix the water and flour until well incorporated and desired consistency.  Knead few times with hand until become a smooth dough.
  2. Divide the dough into 12 equal portions.
  3. Shape dough into a ball.  Flatten the dough, place a mung bean ball in the centre, cover and shape into round ball.
  4. Spread the roasted sesame seeds on a plate.  Place the ball on top and gently press it with your palm and flip over to another site and gently press it until like a pancake.  Repeat the same process until finish all the balls.
  5. Heat cooking oil in a non-stick pan.  When the oil is hot, turn to low heat.  Place the rice cakes into the pan.  Cook until the bottom of the cake turns brown, approx. 3 minutes.  Flip over the cake and cook for another 3 minutes or until the bottom is brown.
  6. Serve the rice cake while it is still warm.