Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Thursday, December 22, 2011
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Monday, November 14, 2011
yields 8 large cupcakes (I got 12 medium ones)
40 grams milk
50 grams oil
70 grams egg yolk (about 4 large)
30 grams sugar
70 grams flour
10 grams cornstarch
1/4 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Egg White mixture:
160 grams egg whites (about 5 large)
1/2 tsp cream of tartar (i used lime juice)
80 grams sugar
1. beat egg whites with cream of tartar until it forms soft peaks. Add sugar gradually and peak to stiff peaks
2. Combine all yolk ingredients and mix until smooth
3. add 1/3 of egg whites to yolk mixture, and whisk to combine. Dump and yolk mixture back into the rest of the egg whites and fold gently until smooth and there are no more white streaks.
4. bake at 340F for 20 minutes.
I am submitting this post to Aspiring Bakers #13: (November 2011) hosted by Min of Min's Blog.
Saturday, November 5, 2011
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Monday, October 10, 2011
|Banana(she used dole, long variety)||2 (i used one banana and one apple)|
|Flour||3/4 cup (replaced with whole wheat flour)|
|Sugar||1/2 of a 3/4 cup (less than half cup of demerera)|
|Baking powder||1/2 tsp|
|Baking soda||1/2 tsp|
|Vanilla essence||1/2 tsp (replaced with 1/2 tsp of nutmeg)|
- Pre heat oven to 190oC
- Take the peeled bananas in a bowl and mash it well with hands to make it a paste. Add oil,vanilla sugar to it and mix well. Keep a side.
- Mix flour,baking powder,baking soda in another bowl with a whisk.
- Fold gently,do not over mix,just mix well so that every thing blends properly and don't beat,with 3/4 th of the walnuts added to it,reserve some for sprinkling on the top.
- Line the muffin tray with paper liners and spoon the batter in it up to 3/4 th of it. It will raise so much so make sure you leave room for it.Top with some walnut sprinkled over it.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until the toothpick inserted comes out clean and top turns golden brown.Mine got baked at around 28 minutes itself,so keep an eye after 25 minutes.
Saturday, October 8, 2011
Saturday, October 1, 2011
If any body cares for day 1, here it is.
day 2). Frost the cake, check for the look and feel and ready the cake.
I sliced the cake horizontally into two. Good, no problem, that was easy with the new turn table at hand.
The icing was rock hard when i took it out from the fridge, so i thought of easing it down by whipping it once again. OH MY GOD, THE ICING FELL APART IN CLUMPS, IT HAD A CURDLED LOOK AND GOSH..! MY HEART STOPPED. I had no idea of how to repair this. After racking my brains for a few minutes, i decided to start afresh, this time going with the age old recipe of butter, icing sugar only.
So made a fresh batch of butter cream with the above ratio omitting the milk chocolate, it was a bit grainy at first, but as i whipped in intervals of 15 mts 3 times, the texture was nice and smooth. THANK GOD..face saved.
But, there is the catch, i had promised her a chocolate frosting. I didn't want to experiment again (putting the inner genius and the genie to sleep; i now understood the look on appa's face), i made a chocolate truffle by melting equal portions of dark chocolate and cream till it is of pourable consistency. Whew....let me catch some breath.
Firstly, (remember i had left the cake as it is once it was slit) i layered the cake with buttercream, then crumb coated it and set it in the fridge for 15 mts. Once set, i plastered (is it the right word..?) the cake with more buttercream and smothered the edges nice and smooth. Set in fridge for another 15 minutes. Now the cake looked half beautiful (or half ugly...!). Gently pour the cooled truffle until it coated all the sides of the cake. That was the only thing i could well in this (mis)adventure. There it was a smooth delicious looking chocolate cake.
Next, what, i let my imagination run wild and piped out designs using the remaining buttercream all over the cake. (lousy, lopsided, lethargic). These would be the words going through anybody's mind if they caught me in the act of piping. Time to get serious and get good practice. All in all, the cake was done. It looked pretty, not professional. Am waiting with bated breath about the outcome of the cake from my friend.
P.S. For people wondering what i did with the chocolate frosting "gone wrong" check out my next post.
I had a request For a birthday cake. An eggless one. Till then i didn't have any chance to try eggless ones, but this friend is a strict vegetarian; so, for her little one's birthday, i challenged myself to make a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting.I zeroed in a recipe from a milkmaid collection recipe book of my mother's.I was not sure of how the texture of this cake is going to be or how much this will yield, so i made a trial version a week before. As this was my first cake for somebody else, i had to set out a plan to make the cake and frosting.
day 1). Make the cake and frosting, set both in fridge.
Chocolate cake recipe
milk maid - 400gms
butter- 150 gms
maida - 200 gms
cocoa powder - 35 gms
baking powder - 2 tsp
baking soda - 1 tsp
warm water - 200 ml
salt - a pinch
vanilla essence - 1 tsp
grease a 9 inch baking pan and line it with butter paper. (i always do this, makes cleaning the dishes easy)
sift the maida, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt twice.
melt butter in a bowl and allow it to cool
Add milk maid and mix well
stir in the water and mix again
when everything is a homogeneous mixture, add the dry mixture and mix lightly until they all come together.
Do not over mix.
transfer into the cake pan and bake at 150 for 45 mts.
Allow the cake to cool.
This was another opportunity to spread the austerity drive that i always practice. There were lots of milk chocolates in the fridge; suddenly an inner voice prompted me to substitute cocoa with milk chocolate (that was the disaster waiting to happen).
I whistled aloud of what a genius i was; Appa just gave a baffled look..!(i didn't know why).
So meticulously i took 250 gms of butter, 500 gms of icing sugar, 250 gms of melted milk chocolate and mixed everything with a hand held mixer and whipped them until they were soft and fluffy.
Notwithstanding, the inner genius (i think it should be read as genie) hinted on to add a table spoon of instant coffee powder to make it a mocha frosting.
Just imagine, a first timer dishing out a chocolate cake with chocolate mocha frosting (sounds so professional yo..).
Everything was hunky dory, the cake was good and the frosting was well done. I thanked all my stars and went to bed.
Friday, September 23, 2011
During the Jangiri debacle, i browsed so many sites for help and Rak's Kitchen made my day. She had announced an event for the month for sweets made with fruits or veggies.
I remembered, long long ago, when we were kids, amma used to make apple halwa every birthday. I completely forgot about it over the years, she too, i suppose. Nowadays it is more of stylish dishes like 'Mysurpa' or 'Ghee ladoo'.
The moment i read about the event, the recipe that came to my mind was this halwa. It is very easy to prepare and very tasty too. I am submitting this for her event.
Apple - 2 nos
Sugar - 1/2 cup (reduce it if you like it less sweeter)
Sugarless Khoa - 5 Tablespoon
Cardamon - a pinch
Almonds - for garnish (optional)
Cook the apples with the skin (nutrients, vitamins... aaghh) until tender.
Then add sugar.The mixture will turn liquidy now.
Cook till all the moisture is absorbed.
When it is nice and thick add the khoa and cook for five minutes.
Remove from fire add the cardamon and garnish with almond flakes. Tada... it is done.
Saturday, September 17, 2011
I had bookmarked this recipe a long time ago, but didn't find the right occasion to try it. Suddenly when we had an unexpected guest, these buns came to my mind. Moreover i had to test the instant yeast that i am using for the first time. SSB's buns were perfectly round. I skipped her stuffing and substituted with kaya paste that was nearing its expiry date. So i didn't make them into a round, i rather used the book fold method. The instant yeast was much easier to use, didn't have to proof it separately, you can directly add it to the flour mixture. Should also try croissants with this one day. The buns tasted very good, better than the store bought ones, but weren't looking like store bought ones. Should work on the appearance
Verdict : There were two flaws, i could not get a smooth surface on the buns as she had. Number two, the buns were not as soft the next day. Don't know where i went wrong, should clarify with her.
Thursday, September 1, 2011
I had been long waiting for an opportunity to make this sweet. But, i had my own inhibitions.There was one attempt (which i would quickly want to forget) which was a catastrophe. Fortunately mom was not there at home during that (otherwise i would have been worse than that jangiri of mine). Appa silently took away with the garbage before she sensed any mischief.
This time i did a lot of R&D. The occasion too was special. It was my parents' anniversary. Every year i make them Paal Payasam, but this time i wanted to try something different. It was so selfish of me. Though they both are diabetics, they relish whatever i make except for my sister A, who is a devil of a critic. Even Nigella should put some extra effort to please her.
I am no Nigella, so this was a better attempt from my previous one. I played safe with going with mini jangiris this time, not the fancier original design. Was pretty easy,need to practice a lot.I made two mistakes with this recipe. I cut the cone which held the jangiri batter a little too wide, that is why they are a bit stout. Mistake number two is, the sugar syrup crystallized quickly than i had anticipated. So when the jangiris cooled it formed a coating of sugar which i didn't like. Two things to keep in mind in future(should also try the real jangiri design next time).
As usual this is not my recipe, i had taken it from here. Hers was far far better than mine.
Monday, August 22, 2011
This is an impulsive post. Yes i baked this in an impulse. Saw this recipe, though it didn't have any pictures or anything eye catching, i had an intuition that this will turn out great (and it did). We can't have this plain so am planning to make some minestrone soup "The Soup Spoon" style, which i had in Singapore last month. The soup was yummy and i hope this will be a good condiment for it.
I am submitting this to Aspiring Bakers #10: Easy as Pie (August 2011), hosted by Janine of Not the Kitchen Sink!
Flaky pastry :
225g/8oz plain flour
pinch of salt
Preparation method :
1.Mix the flour with the salt and rub in half of the lard. Add enough cold water to bring the flour to a soft dough.
2.Mix together the rest of the lard and the butter.
3.Roll out the dough to make a rectangle 12.5 x 25cm/5 x 10in.
4.Dot one third of the butter/lard mixture over two-thirds of the rectangle. Fold the third without any fat on it over the middle third of the pastry. Bring the other third on top. Seal the edges with a rolling pin and turn the dough 90 degrees. Chill for 10 minutes.
5.Repeat stage 4 with half of the rest of the fat and then repeat one more time with the remaining fat. Chill for 10 minutes after each folding.
6.Roll and fold one more time without any fat and then chill for 30 minutes.
The pastry was very flaky and crisp, Should also go well with tea or coffee as well, but i personally felt it would go well with anything spicy like korma, or i am thinking of adding it to the potato gravy for dinner.
Saturday, August 20, 2011
After much discussion and thinking, we decided this sweet for Krishna Jayanthi. Only last week there was an overdose of sugar with Gulab Jamun, so i wanted a very simple and light sweet for the little one. This was made with paneer and milk with some crushed almonds that was left over in the fridge for a long time. I don't know how they get the pristine white colour in the shops, this was off white in colour. After bringing it down to room temperature, i refrigerated it for 2 hours before cutting them into pieces. Garnished them with salted pistachios to give a kick. Will keep you posted on how they tasted, later....
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
I AM BACK. Back with the ever popular "Gulab Jamun". After the long vacation in singapore, back to chennai and how lovely it was to see my house and garden. The initial days took my time to set right the mess. When i checked my kitchen pantry, i saw the milkpowder nearing its exp date.
Such a miser that i am, i don't like to waste anything, i jumped into the idea of making gulab jamun. This is my maiden adventure of making GJ from milk powder. With my creative juices flowing (flooding rather) this is was an instant way of dishing out this beautiful delicacy (though it tasted best the next day).
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
This post is a bit late, actually the first post abroad. Landed in the cleanest city of the world five days back and am awestruck by the clockwork precision of things managed in Singapore. Since i didn't bring in much for A to eat, i thought of making it here; there is no dearth of shops that supply exclusive Indian goods here. This is the first of many to come (or so i hope).
It was pretty easy. Just mix in powdered cashew nuts with sugar syrup and tada...you are done.The one thing i was blown over again by how clean the sugar was. Not a speck of dirt. In the other post of Kaju Katli, the color was a bit ashen (courtesy:India sugar industry). I was too apprehensive to use any bleaching agents to whitish color (as in store bought ones). I just add milk to the sugar syrup to remove whatever slime that floats by. This time i didn't have to do anything, the syrup was crystal clear. A had already ordered the moon cake moulds online. The sweet came out beautifully and were lip smacking to taste. Aren't they cute..?
Thursday, June 9, 2011
The day i sulked about sponge cakes, the baking fairy must have heard it. She turned around and stayed with me for the next two endeavours (devil's food cake and the current post). The cupcakes turned out beautifully. More beautiful than i had expected. They were absolutely spongy, melt in the mouth cupcakes. I had never dreamt that i would bake such beautiful cupcakes one day.
Thanks to "The little teochew". This is her recipe for clear water sponge cake. I added a dash of vanilla to make it a vanilla cupcake. Next time, should try it with orange or lime flavour.
Friday, June 3, 2011
Wednesday, June 1, 2011
Summer brings with it all kinds of coolants. Seasonal fruits, vegetables and other delicacies that are synonymous with summer crop up at every nook and corner of the city.
When we were young (i am not old now :-}), a kulfi man with his trademark red cloth bundled over a barrel of kulfis, would ring his trawler's bell (wonder why they didn't' have the conventional horn...!). All the kids would be out and throwing tantrums at their parents to get what they wanted. But, once amma tasted it and decided to make it herself once she saw our (we are three gentle giants) appetite for it.
The recipe is very simple: Whole milk boiled for a very long time along with crushed almonds,cardamom with a dash of cornflour and sugar. Once it cooled off, they re poured into kulfi moulds and frozen till rock hard and all of us would delve into it as much as we liked.
I grew up with this; when it was time to make my own, i started to improvise. I omitted cardamon and added badam flavouring (MAS is the best), and thinly sliced almonds to give an extra kick to this dessert. Biting into the almond slices midway adds richness to this dish and we all love it.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
"success", "success", "success" Does this remind you of an old M.G.R movie's opening line; then so be it. I had baked a sponge cake successfully after so many days that my joy knew no bounds. As posted previously, i had my own inhibitions about baking cakes with oil. Now, when i came across a recipe that didn't call for oil either, i was intrigued, how on earth could they do it..? It is called "Castella/Kasutera" or Japanese sponge cake. The picture of this cake was out of the world. Seriously; anybody who takes a look at this beauty will fall in love with it instantly.
After the damp squib in the last post, i was determined to conquer the "Sponge Cake territory";So: the spider from Robert Bruce's episode, that i am: i scoured through scores of sites that dealt with sponge cake 911's.I always turn to HHB for all my baking misadventures. She is so versatile as a baker. From HappyHomeBaking's blog i jumped from site to site until i laid my eyes on The Little Teochew, another fantabulous blog that finally opened the doors to Just Hungry from where i took the recipe that didn't have a drop of oil or butter in it. It was so kind of her to dote down step by step instruction on baking the cake that i made this one which was 80% the texture of the original Castella(since i halved her recipe, i baked it in a loaf tin and i used AP flour, u dont get bread flour in chennai). Next time i would try this in a square pan. I pinched myself when the cake was sliced the next day as she had instructed. From now on this is going to be called as Ms Maki's cake. It was so tasty...that all of them drooling over it.
This was my far the best sponge cake that i had ever baked. Hip Hip Hurray.
Friday, May 13, 2011
Looks like i am always running out of luck when it comes to baking a good sponge cake. As i already said, i am yet to try some cakes that uses oil. This is one such (mis)adventure.
This cake uses the separation of eggs(whites and yolks beaten separately) and uses oil and water. I was very skeptical initially, but gave myself a daring bakers challenge. What is life without taking up challenges.
The cake was good but not good enough. It was more "cottony" in texture rather than "spongy" . But, i think i know where i went wrong. The pan i used was a 7 inch round pan for a 100 gm flour batter.This could be a reason (or so i think).
Any way, about the cake, as usual, my family didn't want to break my heart; they said it was good, but for me it was a learning curve. I don't like cakes filled with butter cream or whipping cream. I prefer jams and fruit preserves to coat them. This one was smothered with orange marmalade to make up for the lacklustre texture of the cake. So friends please ask the baking fairy to visit me when i bake my next sponge cake...
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Am i getting repetitive; "NO": All the previous posts were to do something about chocolate and muffins. This too is no different; or so you think. Both the previous muffins were made with dark chocolate, while this one was made with cocoa powder and oil.
I had seen some chocolate cake recipes that used oil instead of butter, but i dared not try them for fear of "if they went wrong". I scaled down the proportions of the cake and tried them as muffins so that i can save the labour of cleaning so many bowls and whisks.
The muffin did'nt have a dome like a cup cake does and the crust was soft and not crunchy. May be because of the oil. It was delicious but did'nt quite taste like the cup cake. So i reserve this for any "diet time cravings".
Monday, May 9, 2011
Yuuuhuu, i got new paper liners(really cute ones); so what are we waiting for, baking time folks. The last one was choco banana muffins, so this time i made some plain muffins studded with chocolate chips. I used hersheys, kind of melt in the mouth chocolate drops. Should really congratulate people who found this. This kind of stays like half melted so that you can get the taste of chocolate in between.
I baked them in heart muffin pans that the other A gave me. If you are looking at this blog then A thank you so much. As an alternative i added an extra spoonful of yogurt to the batter and made it quite runny unlike muffin batter that are just moist.
It actually worked out. The muffins were tender and stayed fresh the next day as well. The pan made bigger muffins than the cup cake pans; so next time i would eat half instead of one.
Saturday, May 7, 2011
I don't know why, suddenly i got all gaga over cupcakes and muffins. I plan to bake more of them this month. With so many bananas going stale and lots of semi sweet chocolate chips lying around, the combination was inevitable.
Initially, i found bananas with chocolate intriguing, but the first bite solves it all. Bananas gives the muffins extra moistness and it tastes even better the next day.
Anytime of this month, banana cake is also on the list. I have tried various versions of it, but yet to come out with a successful recipe. This muffin was good for morning tea and an ideal snack with cold drinks in the late afternoon when the temperatures soars (literally it is reaching 40 almost everyday)
Friday, April 29, 2011
Aptly named the "king of Halwas", this is once in a year delicacy; reserved for special occasions. A had come to India and i made so many things for her during her return. This is the first one i made. I must confess that i lack talent in making anything that is savoury. I dont know why, i have'nt tried to make anything savoury (snacks/titbits)in my life.
One of my new year resolution is to try with success some amount of savoury.My sweets always turn out to be good; so may be i was satisfied with it and not adventurous enough to sail into unknown territory. ok coming back to the halwa. This is like old wine, it tastes better as it ages. I made it on friday, the real taste surged only after sunday. i couldnt have just a spoonful.
Sunday, April 3, 2011
Oh how i love this...There is no alternative to this dish at any point of time. A vadai is a vadai is a vadai by anu other name. (oops..sorry that is my liking for this snack). This is so versatile that it can be manifested into so many different tasting snacks withoout much ado.
SAMBAR VADAI - Dip them in hot sambar and lo and behold.....mouth watering evening tiffin
THAYIR VADAI - Soak in thick curd and garnish with corainder and roasted cumin and kara boondi. lip smacking.....
RASA VADAI - A perfect evening snack that leaves a hangover till the next day..peppery rasam and soft vadai...
KEERAI VADAI - Add greens to the dough before frying and gourge on the heavely crispy healthy munchies..
The list could just go on with VEGETABLE VADAI or i have heard some people stuffing with meat or chicken mince (didnt try that yet), but i could have it just like that.
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Anybody having a sweet tooth would die for this sweet. The most beloved after Gulab Jamun and Carrot Halwa, this is indispensible during Diwali or any special ocassion.
I had a special ocassion too. I made this as a return gift for my aunt in France. (one of my cake baking Guru). She is a lovely lady to have sent me so many baking paraphenalia all the way from France that i thought, it would be embarassing for me to thank her empty handed. So i made a lot of this and am still waiting for her review.
Will keep ya posted