Oct 07

Eggless Coffee Cake

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There are so many recipes out there. Some look perfect but when attempted are a dismal failure.

Now I love coffee cakes and have made a few but all egg based. So when I get an order for an eggless coffee walnut cake for this weekend I readily said yes and then sat in a tizzy wondering what recipe should I try.

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Most people shy away from eggless, yes that used to be me at a point but when u have a dear friend who asks “eggless hai kya” plus live in an area that prefers eggless, the need of the hour is a good eggless recipe.

To my luck a fantabulous baker Priyanka Arora Nayak (urf Baker Rani) from Polka Dots Cake Academy posted this recipe and I didn’t wait a day before eagerly attempting a trial batch. It was so yum that I saved some just to photograph it. All the other pieces were gobbled up.

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Ingredients

140 gms All purpose flour

30 gms Cocoa powder

1 tsp Baking powder

1/2 tsp Baking soda

150 ml yoghurt

165 gms castor sugar

1/2 cup oil

3 tsp coffee powder mixed with 1 tbsp. hot water

1 tsp Vanilla extract

3 tbsp. milk

1/4 tsp salt

On the side whipped cream and a rum cinnamon sauce (Optional)

 

  1. Preheat oven to 160C and line a 7″ tin.
  2. Combine coffee and hot water
  3. Sieve the dry ingredients – APF, Cocoa, BP, BS and salt.
  4. Beat yoghurt and sugar till well blended.
  5. Add coffee mix and vanilla extract. Mix well.
  6. Add oil very gradually, while beating continuously.
  7. Mix dry ingredient mixture in 3 instalments and gently mix the batter. Avoid over mixing it.
  8. Add milk and mix gently. Pour into the greased tin. Tap 2-3 times to remove the air bubbles.
  9. Bake at 160C for 45-50 mins or until a skewer comes clean.

Recipe courtesy – Polka Dots Cake Academy

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Aug 16

Bhuna Ghosht

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Mutton cravings were reaching a peak. Especially home cooked mutton. I was desperate for done but my kids don’t enjoy and have been procrastinating to cook for the two of us.

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Made full use of the Independence Day holiday and invited my family over for lunch with the joint purpose of celebrating Rakhi too

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Prepared Bhuna Ghosht which is a simple, light and flavoursome Hyderbadi preparation and it was paired with an aromatic Mangalorean ghee rice. Bliss

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Ingredients

1 kg mutton

1.5″ cinnamon stick

3 green cardamoms

2-3 thinly sliced big onions

8 chopped garlic

1 heaped tbsp ginger garlic chilli paste

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1-2 tsp red chilli powder

oil salt

1 tbsp all purpose flour (maida)

chopped coriander

 

  1. Heat oil in a pressure cooker, add the cinnamon and cardamom, wait for a minute and add the onions and garlic. Fry till golden brown.
  2. Add the ginger garlic chilli paste and fry till the raw smell goes off.
  3. Add salt, turmeric, chilli and mutton pieces. Fry on medium heat mixing constantly till the pieces have a well fried look.
  4. Add 3/4 cup water, give one whistle and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let the pressure drop by itself.
  5. Remove heat and check if the meat is done. Add maida and mix well.
  6. Dry any excess water but ensure that you are left with enough gravy. garnish with coriander

recipe – Nita Mehta with a few personal touches.

 

 

Aug 10

Orange & Cranberry Cake

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I had an order today for boozy tea cakes. 4 diff flavours. Now I do use alcohol in some of my birthday cakes (if the client demands) but usually I soak them or mix in the ganache. Never tried to booze up a tea cake

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When the client asked for 4 diff flavours, the bewdi 🙊 in me started thinking of cocktail combinations and this is what I came up with
Kahlua & coffee
Lemon almond & tequila
Orange Cranberry & Vodka
Banana walnut & dark rum

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As I wanted to taste the combinations made a little extra of each flavour for me. I have already featured the other flavours in my blog, but not this one.

So here it is. Orange & Cranberry tea cake. Look at that crumb 😍

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INGREDIENTS

225 gms room temp Amul butter

200 gms Granulated sugar

2 Eggs, at room temperature

2 tbsp fresh Orange juice

1.5 tsp Orange zest

190 gms All purpose flour

2 tsp Baking powder

1/2 cup Milk , at room temperature

1/4 cup Dried cranberries

 

  1. Preheat your oven to 170 C.
  2. Grease a 9 x 3 inch loaf cake pan well and dust with flour.
  3. Sieve the flour and baking powder.
  4. Mix the dried cranberries with a tablespoon of the flour mixture. Keep aside.
  5. Rub the orange zest and sugar for a minute or two.
  6. Beat the zested sugar and butter using an electric mixer for a few minutes until light , fluffy and creamy.
  7. Beat in the eggs and orange juice.
  8. Add the flour mixture in three additions alternating with the milk in two additions . So , 1/3 of the flour- 1/2 of the milk -1/3 of the flour- 1/2 of the milk- 1/3 of the flour. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
  9. Fold in the floured cranberries with a spatula.
  10. Spread batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle a few cranberries on top.
  11. Bake for 40-45 minutes until the cake spring back when touched or a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
  12. Cool in pan for 5 minutes and then remove from pan to cool completely, right side up on a wire rack.

(the recipe is taken from the blog http://www.floursandfrostings.com/orange-and-cranberry-butter-cake-recipe with some minor changes as I made them. U can also follow the exact recipe as mentioned in the blog link)

Aug 03

Eggless Vanilla Cupcakes

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Baking without eggs is not too easy. To get the right texture and flavour i had to go through many recipes to find the one that works best. when Anuja Sule from Simple baking shared this for her bake along group, I knew it had to be a winner.

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This cupcake is moist, light ad delicious. dressed it 3 ways –

 

  • Vanilla cupcakes topped with chocolate chips.
  • Vanilla cupcakes topped with whipped cream and a Kahlua drizzle.
  • Vanilla cupcakes with an Oreo cookie for the base and frosted with a cookies and cream frosting

one bite and you are transported

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Ingredients:

 

170 grams all purpose flour
15 grams cornflour
240 grams thick curd
170 grams caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/8th teaspoon baking powder
125 ml flavourless oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon water approximately (depends upon the consistency of the curd)
Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degree Celsius and line a 12 cavity cupcake tray with cupcake liners.
  2. In a medium size bowl, sift all dry ingredients, set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, cream sugar and curd till the sugar is completely dissolved.
  4. Add oil and vanilla, mix well.
  5. Fold in the dry ingredients until batter is smooth. Don’t over mix.
  6. Add water till the batter reaches dropping consistency. Scoop the batter in the cupcake liners and bake for 12-14 minutes.

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Jul 15

Victoria Sponge cake

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One of Britain’s most loved cakes is the Victoria sponge cake that supposedly has been named after Queen Victoria. Its a moist delicious and feather light sponge that is perfect to serve at tea time. Either slather it with cream and strawberries or lightly dust it with some icing sugar. Its absolute heaven when slightly warmed before enjoying it.

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The key to growth is constantly learning new things. Baking is something I enjoy and being part of a baker’s fortnightly baking group is such a treasure trove of recipes and flavours. i have Anuja Sule from Simple Baking to thank again for this wonderful recipe.

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Ingredients

175 grams butter, room temperature (1 cup)
175 grams caster sugar (1 cup)
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
3 eggs, room temperature
175 grams all purpose flour (1.5 cup)
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
30 ml milk, room temperature

 

  1. Heat oven to 190 degree Celsius. Grease and flour one 8 inch round cake tin.
  2. Sieve the flour and baking powder.
  3. Place the butter, sugar and vanilla essence into a bowl and beat well to a creamy consistency (about 5 minutes).
  4. Slowly beat in the eggs, one by one
  5. Then fold in the flour and baking powder and mix well.
  6. Add the milk give it a nice stir.
  7. Pour the batter into the cake tin, place into the oven and bake for about 20 mins until risen and golden brown.
  8. The cakes should spring back when gently pushed in the middle. When ready, remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 mins in the tin, before turning out onto a wire rack and cooling completely.
  9. Dust some icing sugar on top and eat warm.

Jul 01

Oregano & Cheese Crackers

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Looks like this week is all about savoury  bakes. And am loving it.

Spicy salty crunchy goodness. Such an easy recipe of oregano and cheese crackers. Make it thin and pair it with a creamy delicious dip or make it slightly thicker and enjoy it as a biscuit.

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I wish I had those little animal cutters, this reminded me of those jeera animal biscuits we used to get. Diff spices but lovely to munch on

Thanks once again Anuja Sule from Simple Baking for your wonderful recipes and always encouraging us to try new things.

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Ingredients:
235 gms all-purpose flour
225 gm grated cheddar cheese, firmly packed (processed cube cheese will do)
2 teaspoons dried oregano
½  teaspoon  salt
½ teaspoon black pepper/chilli flakes
½ cup (120 ml) vegetable oil
½ cup (120 ml) chilled water (approximately) , you may not need all

Spice Topping:
¼ teaspoon chilli flakes
1 teaspoon  salt
1 teaspoon sugar

Method:

  1. Combine the spice topping and set aside.
  2. Grate the cheese and put in the bowl with flour, oregano, salt and pepper and mix it together.
  3. Add the oil and mix to getl the consistency of wet sand.
  4. Add enough water for the dough to come together.
  5. Form the dough into two disks, wrap with cling film and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
  6. Heat the oven to moderate 160°C.
  7. Working with a quarter of the dough at a time, use a rolling pin and roll to appx 3 mm thick.
  8. Cut the strips into cracker shapes or cut out using a cookie cutter.
  9. Transfer to a parchment lined cookies sheet and sprinkle with the spice mixture.
  10. Bake for 20-25 minutes until medium golden brown.
  11. Store in an airtight container and eat within three days.

Jun 28

Wine & Cheese Straws

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Cakes are all that I seem to bake now a days. And since I started baking, my craving for sweets has completely reduced. Not that I hog on them but just the smell of vanilla and chocolate kind of makes me stay away from eating the desserts I bake.

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At a recent Baker’s meet, we were shown how to make these delicious cheese straws by Anuja Sule from Simple Baking. It was so delicious, cheesy, spicy, crispy and a perfect snack.

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Attempted them today and super happy with the result.

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Ingredients

120 gms All purpose flour

80 gms chilled Amul butter

1/2 tsp chilli powder

1/4 tsp salt (lesser is fine too as cheese and butter both have salt)

1/4 tsp garlic powder

100 gms grated parmesan cheese/cheddar/processed

30 ml chilled white wine (or any liquid like water/milk/balsamic vinegar/egg)

Wash – 1 egg white/milk

white and black sesame seeds

 

  1. Sieve the all purpose flour and cut the butter in to it using a scrapper. Avoid use of hands as that will transfer body heat to the mix.Cut it and mix to make pea size crumbs in the flour.
  2. Add the salt, garlic powder, chilli powder, cheese and mix it with the scrapper.
  3. Add the wine (or any liquid that u are using) spoon by spoon and bring the dough together. Do not knead. Just scrape from outside and bring it in. Once all the liquid is added, use your hands to gently tighten the dough by cupping the dough together to form a mound.
  4. Cling wrap and keep it in the fridge for half hour.
  5. After half hour, roll the dough (thickness of a stuffed paratha) to a square shape and cut lengthways strips to 1.5-2″ thickness. u can alternatively gently roll to make pipes with your fingers and give a design of your choice.
  6. Line your rack with a silicon mat or a tin with parchment paper and place the strips on it, twisting it slightly from the centre to give it a shape.
  7. Place the strips in the fridge for another half hour.
  8. Preheat your oven to 150C.
  9. Remove the tray from the fridge and give it an egg/milk wash. Sprinkle some sesame seeds on it.
  10. Bake on middle rack, with top & bottom rod on for 25 – 30 mins. Keep an eye out, once golden brown shut the oven else will get too brown. Leave it in the shut oven for another 4-5 mins and then remove to cool. Store in airtight container.
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Jun 26

Spinach Soup

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It’s a lazy lazy Sunday. The skies have opened up and it’s that kind of day where u want some comfort food without too much effort.

A friend had dropped in for dinner and since I was making lasagna asked her to get some bread to go with it. But we never landed eating it as the lasagna was quite filling. The idea of a cheesy pull apart bread popped in my head and I decided to keep the bread in the fridge for a rainy day.

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It’s so easy. No brainier absolutely. And so delicious and fattening 🙈🙈, though it’s better to opt for a harder denser bread. This one was a butter bread so quite soft and flaky.

If there’s rain and bread to go with it then there should be some piping hot soup. Strangely I never posted my spinach soup on the blog and I decided to make it along with the pull apart.

Isn’t this an awesome Sunday meal. 😋

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Ingredients

1 big bundle chopped spinach

1 chopped onion

6-8 chopped garlic

6-7 peppercorns

1 bayleaf

2 cups water

1 cup milk

1 tsp jeera powder

(Optional – 2 Maggi veg/chicken cubes. Amazing flavour. But avoid this when someone is unwell)

 

  1. Heat 1 tsp oil, add the peppercorns and bay leaf.
  2. When it sizzles, add the onions and garlic.
  3. Let the onions turn pink, add the spinach. Cover and cook. Shut the gas when cooked
  4. Throw away the bay leaf and bit zit in the mixer
  5. Heat the 2 cups water, add jeera powder (if using Maggi cubes, add them now)
  6. Add the puréed spinach and adjust seasoning. Let it boil for a few minutes.
  7. Lower the gas and add the milk. Bring it to a boil and shut the gas.

 

Jun 26

Cheese pull apart bread

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It’s a lazy lazy Sunday. The skies have opened up and it’s that kind of day where u want some comfort food without too much effort.

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A friend had dropped in for dinner and since I was making lasagna asked her to get some bread to go with it. But we never landed eating it as the lasagna was quite filling. The idea of a cheesy pull apart popped in my head and I decided to keep the bread in the fridge for a rainy day.

 

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It’s so easy. No brainier absolutely. And so delicious and fattening 🙈🙈, though it’s better to opt for a harder denser bread. This one was a butter bread so quite soft and flaky.

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If there’s rain and bread to go with it then there should be some piping hot soup. Strangely I never posted my spinach soup on the blog and I decided to make it along with the pull apart.

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Isn’t this an awesome Sunday meal. 😋

Ingredients

1 round bread loaf (dense if avl)

10 – 12 Britannia Cheezza sticks cut to 1″ thickness and about 2″ in length. (pizza or mozzarella cheese)

2-3 Chopped Chicken salami slices or bacon strips (optional)

1/2 cup Bagels Chilli garlic butter (or make your own by mixing garlic, room temp butter and salt and chilli flakes)

2 tsp chopped spring onions

Aluminium foil

 

  1. Preheat oven to 180C
  2. Make diagonal cross slices in the bread being careful not to go right to the bottom as we need the base to hold the bread together.
  3. Apply butter generously in all the cross sections, ensuring all the slits are well coated.
  4. At each cross, insert a mozzarella stick and ensure that there is cheese at equal intervals.
  5. Put the chopped salami/bacon (optional) in the rest of the gaps.
  6. Wrap the bread in aluminium foil ensuring that the top can be opened at a later stage.
  7. Put it in the oven with bottom and top rod on and bake for 20 mins.
  8. Open the top foil and brush the bread with more butter and sprinkle spring onions.
  9. Put it back in the oven with top rod only for 5-10 minutes till u get a golden brown crust
  10. Serve hot.

 

Jun 23

Harry’s Brookies

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My favourite cooking show is Masterchef Australia. I don’t really like the other country versions that are on air. They seem TRP focused, while the Australia one is warm, delicious and u connect with the judges as well as participants.

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The episode where Nigella and Matt wake up the participants for a midnight snack was superb. Harry made these Brookies and I just wanted to jump into the TV and share a midnight snack with him. Both the Brookies and Harry looked scrumptious. This is my layout for a midnight snack with Harry 😋

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Finally made these and they are to die for. Made 2 lots. One bigger and with less cooking time, they were chewy like a brownie and then these ones with the mentioned cooking time which were crunchy. Both though were simply delicious.

Recipe from http://tenplay.com.au/channel-ten/masterchef/recipes/dark-chocolate-brookies (with a few inputs & changes)

Ingredients

350 gms pure dark chocolate (i used 50% Van Houten)

45 gms Amul Butter

210 gms Caster Sugar

80 gms Cornflour

1 tsp baking powder

3 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp Nescafe powder

ChocoChips for decoration

 

  1. Preheat oven to 180C.
  2. Place chocolate and butter in a bowl and microwave for a minute. Stir to melt and combine. If not completely melted then microwave at 10 seconds interval. Remove and set aside to cool until needed.
  3. Sieve the cornflour, sugar, coffee powder and baking powder and mix it well.
  4. Add the eggs, Vanilla and beat until light and fluffy.
  5. Add cooled chocolate butter mixture and mix until well combined.
  6. Let it rest for 15-20 mins.
  7. The mixture is wet, so fill it in a piping bag and pipe it on a silicon mat or baking paper.
  8. Dot the top of the cookies with the dark chocolate chips, pressing gently into the dough. Bake for 10-11 minutes in the preheated oven. Shut the oven and leave it in for 3-4 mins. Then remove from oven and set aside to cool.

(Cooking for a minute less or more will change the texture of the brookies. Lesser will make it soft and chewy like a brownie and longer will give u a crunch. Both taste yum This batch will give a huge amount of brookies so experiment with both textures)

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