When festivities are up the magic that unleashes is unique in every way. It feels like it’s been almost a decade since I last posted.The number of posts in the drafts section has piled up as always …the Christmas break is winding up in a few days time. This break I had come down to my parents home due to a family issue…hoping to have things sorted out soon. When I was packing up from Munnar I was in high hopes to finish reading up the books that have been on my shelves. I always get hooked up on one matter or other and then there’s no time to read…
By the end of October, I had the chance to represent my books at the Frankfurt world book fair for the third time at the Gourmet Gallery. The opportunity to present a live show kitchen on “Food from Kerala” was, in fact, the most awesome experience.It was in every way the proudest moment to have been able to showcase the regional diversity of Indian cuisine which was highly appreciated and welcomed.I truly had butterflies in my stomach before going on the podium …the similar kind of cramp that gets me before I start my show. Well, little did I know that there were more of things to happen. The worst part was when I popped in all the chopped pineapple into my shiny little red mini pressure cooker and explaining out to the viewers.I tried to turn on the induction …..and it wasn’t working.Well, there were a few lovely ladies who were there to help me and they jumped in to help me out with the knobs but unfortunately, my elegant induction based pressure cooker would just not work on the induction top I had at the show kitchen.I ended up cooking them up in a normal pot.50 minS was the time allotted for my show.I am happy that even though there were a few mishaps I could convey the message to the viewers. Heres a glimpse of the event below…
The most memorable and the greatest privilege was to have an invite to visit the “Le cordon bleu “culinary institute in Paris in October. Le cordon bleu is a world renowned network of educational institutions dedicated to providing the highest level of culinary and hospitality instructions through world-class programmes.Founded in Paris in 1895, it is considered today as the largest network of culinary schools in the world.
After all the stories now let’s move on to the recipe to pep up this festive spirit. Musambi or sweet lemon was pretty in season and I wanted to use them up for a recipe. That’s when I thought of using them up in making up a sweet lemon cake.
- 175 g cake flour
- 3 eggs
- 175 g sugar
- 175 g butter
- Juice of 2 sweet lemon /musambi
- Rind of 1 sweet lemon finely grated
- 1 tsp of vanilla essence
- 1 tsp of baking powder
- 1/2 tsp of salt
- 1/2 cup of almonds
- 1/2 cup of milk
- Preheat oven at 350 degrees .Sieve the flour , baking powder and salt into a bowl.In an other bowl beat butter and sugar about 2 mins and slowly beat in the eggs on by one .Once the beaten mix is pretty smooth , stir in milk , musambi rind , its juice and vanilla essence .Slowly fold in the dry ingredients with almonds into the mix. Grease and line a cake tin with butter paper and pour in the cake batter .Level the top and bake the cake for about 30 minutes or till a toothpick inserted comes out clean .
Its been a few months of happenings all through .In October at last I happened to be at Frankfurt World bookfair representing my cookbooks at the Worlds Largest Book Fair representing India.With all the set of mishaps with last year Frankfurt fair it was quite nerve wracking till I got my visa.To be at the Frankfurt fair was a big moment and meeting up with some of the most wonderful people was even the most memmorable moment.Catching up with most of the cookbook authors after the awards in May was even more exciting .My kiddos were’nt quite happy of me travelling without them …well I truly missed them ..I just couldn’t help myself from from laughing when they used to call me up and complaint about each other ..on Skype! Gosh ! My pranksters !!!
Back from Frankfurt and it was a whirlwind of happenings .. with my fathers accident ..and a few weeks later my uncle passed away ..it was a quite a bit of shock ..my father is still in the process of recovering ..and I really hope to have him all healthy …In the midst of all this I was featured on the cover of a leading magazine in Kerala , “Karshakasree”
Now on to the recipe of the Italian Bread Pudding .I just love this super quick pudding …
- 1tbsp of butter
- 2 apples , peeled , cored and sliced in to rings
- 85g granulated sugar
- 2tbsp of apple juice
- 4 thick slices of bread with the crusts removed
- 300ml of fresh cream
- 2eggs beaten
- Rind of 1 orange , cut into short thin sticks
- Lightly grease a 1.2 litre deep casserole with butter .
- Arrange the apple rings in the bottom of the dish .Sprinkle half of the sugar over the apples.Pour the juice over the apples.Add the bread slices , pushing them down with your hands to flatten them slightly .
- In a bowl mix the left over sugar with the orange rind and cream .Pour the mixture over the bread .Set aside to soak for about 30minutes .Preheat oven at 180degree celsius and bake for about 25-30 minutes until golden and set .Remove from oven , set aside to cool slightly and serve warm .
A spin of the time wheel and back to being a child …..gosh wish that happened !!!When you are a child all you wish is to be a grown up and you get to do things that you want to do and when you are grown up you are more bounded with all the worldly expectations that you least expected …well that’s life !!!
The school has closed down for a ten day break and I am at my home (hehe..of course my parents’ home ).For the past few months it’s been a suffocating schedule that I have been hooked up to with my younger one being a bit sick .There’s loads of news that has yet to be shared..a few are waiting to be yet unfolded.
Today’s post is one that I have always longed to post …Baked Caramel custard!
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1 can condensed milk
- 2 cups of heavy cream
- 2 tsps of cornflour
- 1 tsp of vanilla extract
- 5 eggs
- 1 cup of milk
- In a bowl using blender mix all the ingredients except sugar till creamy. Heat a non-stick pan and melt the sugar without stirring till the sugar is wholly caramelized. Pour the caramelized sugar on to the base of the baking dish to coat the base evenly. Pour the creamy mix over it .Preheat oven at 180 degree and bake the custard for about 60 minutes or longer till the custard is set in a water bath in the oven. Once baked remove it from the water bath and let it cool down .Run a knife on the edges of the pan and invert it on to a plate. Cut in desired shapes and serve .
A break from the busy bee schedule is something that I have been longing for the past months.With all the cooking at home I have been longing for my mom to cook for me.I guess theres no age bar to crave for your moms food…isnt it true ??Its funny how the days fly when you dont want to end your holidays so soon.The school reopens by the 16th and its back on wheels…
We Keralites are so very much into coconuts and when I came across this recipe with all the goodness of coconuts how could I stop myself from sharing. Baked with the coconuty goodness of everything coconut from scraped coconut to coconut milk…
- 2 cups of flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- Pinch of salt
- 1 cup of coconut milk
- 4tbsp of butter
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¾ cup scraped coconut
- Preheat oven at 180 degree Celsius. Heat the coconut milk with butter so that it
- melts and turn off the flame.
- Sift baking powder, flour and salt together. In a large bowl, beat eggs and sugar for
- about 3 minutes till they go pale in colour or they double in size.
- Mix in the warm coconut milk and vanilla essence.
- Slowly beat the flour mix into this without any lumps.
- Mix in the scraped coconut.
- Grease a bundt pan and pour in the cake mix and bake the cake for about 60
- minutes or till done.
The celebration of Valentine’s day gets popular with every passing day .A day dedicated to your loved ones..that’s how its been captioned ..so dedicating this post to my family and my dearest ones ..with loads of love 🙂
The best recipe to try out on Valentine’s day are the Red Velvet cupcakes. Red velvet cupcakes are super moist cupcakes which are mostly dark red, bright red or red-brown in color. The red color is often with adding beetroots or food color.
- 1 ½ cup flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tbsp cocoa powder
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 large egg
- ½ cup oil
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp vinegar
- ¾ cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
- 1 tsp of red food colour
- Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1 cup cream cheese
- ½ cup butter
- 2 ½ cup icing sugar, sifted
- 1 tsp of vanilla essence
- Preheat oven to 180 degree C.
- Line pans with cupcake liners.
- Whisk flour, sugar, cocoa and salt set aside.
- In a mixing bowl beat egg, oil, buttermilk , red food colour and vanilla essence.
- Fold in the flour mix without any lumps.
- In a small bowl mix baking soda and vinegar till the mix is bubbling, add it to batter
- and mix.
- Pour the batter into cupcake liners bake for 15 mins or till a skewer inserted comes
- out clean.
- Let it cool and top the cupcakes with cream cheese frosting.
- Cream Cheese Frosting
- In a medium bowl add with electric mixer combine cream cheese and butter till
- Mix vanilla &powdered sugar.
- Mix till everything is combined.
- Use frosting to frost the cupcakes.
The start of the new year is the start new resolutions. The first resolution of mine..was to update my blog!!!After 14 whole days with the start off the new year …theres been things that I am back to ..and one is that I’m back to baking 😉 But not that I would have time for orders…but just for my family and friends!Have heard on different types of roast chickens but had never dared to try out recipes just a bit sceptical on how it would turn out to be 😛 So when Ali dropped in for one of my classes and gave me a wonderful recipe on his mom’s fav recipe…I really had a reason to try it out …and it was a hit!
The traditional British and Irish meals mainly consists of roasted meat , vegetables and puddings. The English roast is also a main part of the Christmas dinner. The roasts can be done with beef , chicken , lamb and turkey. As it’s the Christmas time, today’s recipe is the Cornish Soft roast chicken which has a crispy skin and the meat is soft and tender on the inside.
- 1 whole chicken (cleaned with skin)
- 2 large onions sliced in circles
- ¼ cup of chopped celery
- 1 lemon
- 3 potatoes cubed
- 3 tsp of flour
- 2 cups of chicken stock water
- Salt to taste
- For the Filling
- 3 big onions chopped
- 30 g of butter
- 3-4 sausages sliced
- 1 egg whisked
- Fresh Bread crumbs from 3 slices of bread
- 2 tsp of parsley chopped
- 2 tsp of sage leaves chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
- For the Glaze
- 2 tsp of soy sauce
- 1 tbsp of butter
- 4 tbsp of chicken stock
- Heat butter in a pan and sauté the chopped onions till pale in colour on low heat stir
- in sage and parsley along with the sausage pieces.
- Add in the egg and bread crumbs and keep stirring.
- Pour about ¼ cup of chicken stock water, cover and cook for around 10minutes.
- Add a salt to taste and pepper as needed for the spice.
- Fry the mix till the water evaporates and keep aside.
- Rub and marinate the chicken with the juice of a lemon and a generous amount of
- Stuff the inside of the chicken with filling and place it in a roasting dish.
- Pour in some of the chicken stock until the stock sits about a quarter of the way up
- the chicken.
- Place the onion rings into the stock around the sides of the chicken.
- Place the cubed potatoes on top and in between the onion rings.
- Sprinkle the flour over the onion rings and potatoes to help to thicken the stock.
- Preheat the oven at 180 degree Celsius.
- Place the roasting dish in the centre rack of the oven and keep checking every 20
- mints or so to ensure the stock doesn’t become too dry, the stock should reduce but
- not dry completely.
- When the chicken is half way cooked start preparing the glaze.
- Melt butter in a small pan, mix in the soy sauce and chicken stock.
- Brush it on the chicken and continue with the roasting of the chicken.
- Cook until the chicken is thoroughly cooked for about one and half hours.
- Garnish with chopped celery.
There’s the end of another year….. 2014 is slowly winding up..and it’s time for new resolutions !!!! .The holidays for Christmas have started ….break till the 5th of Jan 2015 when the new term is going to start off at school .My elder one Surji is off enjoying his break with his cousins at his father’s house and Siva with me my nonstop blabbering companion. It’s better to hear that my health is catching up from last week’s review at the doc..but the craziest thing is when everyone who meet up with me after a few days have been asking me , ”Oh Nimi u seem to be enjoying your break from school ..You have put on weight!!!” Ha! And the actual truth I feel quite bloated up and tired …an effect from the medications. A worried me asks my doc once in a while ..if I would become my actual self ..She smiles and says ….”all will be well once the course is completed!!”Hmm ….Hope for the best ! So before I get too lazy and sleepy in writing this post ..let me hop on to the recipe of Scones…and thank u Sylvia….here’s picking out and trying recipes from your book 😉
Scone is a single serving cake or quick bread. They are often lightly sweetened and are occasionally glazed. These are different from the normal sweet buns which are normally made from yeast. There are different types of scones and the variants differ from the places .In some countries they also have the savory scones. Scones are normally served with tea or coffee.
- 200ml fresh cream
- 3 cups of flour
- 1 ½ tsp salt
- 4 ½ tsp of baking powder
- 1 cup lemonade
- Flour for dusting
- For Lemonade
- 1 ½ cup of water
- 4-5 tbsp of sugar
- Juice of 3 lemons
- To make the lemonade first boil water, stir in sugar till it dissolves well and then
- remove from heat.
- Let the syrup cool and mix in the lemon juice and keep aside.
- Sift the flour, baking powder and salt twice into a bowl.
- Make a well in the center and pour in the lemonade and cream.
- Use wooden spoon and slightly fold in to make slightly sticky dough.
- Dust flour on your counter; roll the dough slightly mixing the dough to keep it from
- Pat out the dough about 4cm thick with your hands, sprinkling flour when kneaded.
- Use a scone cutter or a circle shaped cutter to cut out circles.
- Place these shapes on to a baking tray and leave them to rise for about 10 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 230 degree Celsius and bake these scones for about 15-20 minutes
- or until they are golden in colour.
- Eat them warm /cold topped with jam, butter or cheese.
So Wishing all a very Merry Christmas!!!
A few weeks back all you could hear was the bloom of the Neelakurinji flower(Strobilanthes kunthiana) a shrub that is told to bloom only once in twelve years in and around Munnar. The beauty was just breathtaking when you have a whole area all blue. It was as if you were in heaven a whole new world. Although I had plans to do a post all were just flushed out with my schedules. The past weeks were pretty out of my hands with my younger one having a fractured arm and guests in and out. A bit relieved that now his arm is ok .Its been quite some time or should I say a very loooooooooooooong time since I baked cakes…it was just now that I recollected that its been an year. Today it’s a very special day…..special in many ways….so back to baking a special cake!
My dad is the best man in my life, the first love of my life, the most perfect man ever….always there to support, to relive my dreams….No matter how old I get, no matter how often I stay out with friends, no matter how far I move away with my husband, no matter how many children I have, no matter how many grandchildren I will have….daddy, I will still be your little girl! I love you more than the world will ever know!!!!
There couldn’t have been a better father than you on this earth – happy birthday to the man who taught me my worth…Happy Birthday Acha! <3 <3 <3
Reliving all the magic that the third of November has here’s the recipe of the Banana cake that I baked .This super moist not too sweet cake was adapted from a cookbook gifted to me by one of my cooking class students, Sylvia Lewis who herself is a very talented cook , foodie and wonderful human being .The book is a collection of tried and tested recipes from different parts of the world. The recipe for the banana cake wad supplied by Daphne Read. This cake is also good with frosting, though I haven’t frosted it.
- ½ cup of butter
- ¾ cup of sugar
- 1 ½ cup of self-rising flour
- 1 tsp of baking soda
- 2 eggs
- 5 very ripe small bananas, pureed
- 2 tbsp of fresh cream
- 1 pinch of salt
- ¼ cup of milk
- Preheat oven to 190 degree Celsius.
- Cream butter and sugar in a bowl until it turns a light colour.
- Gradually add eggs one at a time and beat. Sift flour and salt.
- Mix baking soda in a cup with the milk and cream.
- Add pureed banana into the creamed butter and sugar and mix until combined.
- Alternately add flour and milk mix until just incorporated.
- Pour mixture into a greased and lined baking pan and bake for about 45 minutes or
- until the cake springs from a touch in the middle.
- Cool cake on a wire rack.
This weeks post is a special dedication to all those who love Nutella 😀 When I saw that the Nutella twists was the recipe chosen for last months Daring Bakers was thoroughly fascinated by this twisted beauty.Although it took off a few hours of my Saturday ..it was total bliss ..YuMM! 😀 The best part was having my sons ready to help me out in baking .My younger one was more keen in knowing if it was ready .Every five minutes he would be testing my patience ..asking if it was ready .He wanted to help me out in spreading out the Nutella on the layers…and guess what ….he had nutella all over his face.When I stared at him ..he gave me his angelic smile ..showing of his teeth all coated in chocolate..:PKids are kids ..hmm 😀
1 can (400 gm) (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
3 large eggs
1 cup (240 ml) vegetable oil
1 cup (240 ml) warm water
3 teaspoons (15 ml) (12 gm) yeast
7 cups (1 kg) (2.2 lbs) all-purpose (plain) flour, approximately
Pinch of salt
Instead of the eggwash use
2 tablespoons (30 ml) (25 gm) (1 oz) milk powder
3 tablespoons (45 ml) lukewarm water
1teaspoon (5 ml) (5 gm) sugar
1/4 teaspoon (1 gm) instant coffee
For the filling
½ jar (200 gm) (7 oz) of nutella (or similar)
Mix the condensed milk, yeast, oil, water, and eggs in the bowl of your mixer .Add the flour one cup at a time and knead using the kneading attachment or by hand till you get a
soft dough . The dough will be slightly sticky due to the sweetened condensed milk, don’t worry once the dough rests it will have a wonderful consistency .Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and allow to rest till it doubles in size . Punch down the dough and divide it into 2 parts. Wrap one part in a plastic bag and work with the other. Divide the dough ball into 4 parts.Roll each part into a circle at least 20 cm (8 inch) in diameter.You can use a plate or any other round item as a template if you want your layers to be identical and uniform.Spread the Nutella (or similar filling) on the first layer.9. Place the second layer on top of the first and repeat . Top with the fourth layer, this time only brush it with butter. Using a knife make cuts that divide the dough circles into 8 triangles starting at the center but don’t go all the way to the outer edge. I find that using a ruler to mark the dough makes the cuts easier and more uniform. Then divide each triangle into two (2) . That gives you a total of 16 triangles.13. Gently lift the triangles one at a time and twist them.The end result will look like this, repeat for the other dough ball. Brush the dough with egg wash replacement . Allow to rest for 15 minutes during which you would heat your oven to very hot 500°F/240°C/gas mark 9 (rack in the middle) . Bake for 5 minutes on very hot 500°F/240°C/gas mark 9, then lower the temperature to moderately hot 400°F/200°C/gas mark 6 and bake for 15-20 more minutes (ovens do differ greatly, so the time may differ… what you want is to bake it until the under side is golden brown).If you have a broiler (grill) in your oven. Turn on the broiler (grill) for a couple of minutes until the bread is golden on the top.I baked a few nutella filled buns too with my excess dough.
So wishing all a happy baking :)!