Sunday, September 30, 2007

Simple Egg Cake

Simple Egg cake, as the name suggests is not only simple, but too delicious!! Shilpa of AR, persisted pretty meekly that this was one of her favourites, the recipe handed down by her lovely Aunt 'Pacchi' and I should try it out once! I did try out but couldn't stop at that 'Once'. I have made it over a several times now, in a span of three months, thanks Shilpa!

Here goes the recipe :

1 cup butter(2 sticks / 200 gms) room temperature
1 and 1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 and 1/2 cup maida
1 tsp baking powder (not baking soda..baking powder makes this cake crisper)
1/4 tsp baking soda (for slight moist insides)
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence

Method :
Oven has to be pre-heated at 350° F, 10 minutes prior to baking. I took a 9" x 5" loaf tin.
Grease and flour the tin adequately, keep aside. In a large bowl, beat the butter on low speed with mixer for 3-4 minutes until creamy, add the sugar spoon by spoon and keep mixing for another 6-7 minutes. Add eggs one by one keep the mixer on and mix until it fuses completely, combine the essence too. Two more minutes..keep the mixing part on. Sift together the baking powder, baking soda and maida. Add into the mixture spoon by spoon. Mix until the dry ingredient is incorporated into the mixture.
Pour the batter into the baking tin. Bake for 30 minutes or until a inserted toothpick/knife comes out clean. Take it out of oven, allow to cool in tin for ten minutes, then upturn on a plate or foil. Let it cool completely, cut into pieces and NJOI!!!!!

My Findings : My oven is an electric one, and is of 20l capacity...hence no middle rack or top rack.Its just at the bottom of the oven, hence less heating time. I had to bake this cake for 20 mins at 150 °C to achieve this golden brown crispy-from-out, slightly- moist-in result!

This photo was taken specially to email it to Shilpa showing my gratitude towards her, her recipes!!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Godu Appo / Sweet Appams

Today is the 10th day of Ganesh Utsav and I wish to present for departing Ganesha, a sweet delicacy.

Our childhood delicacies were mostly home made sweets until two decades back, and after that the world of Sweet Shops threw open their doors for all of us and we could buy any type of sweet, any thing that we could wish for !!! Coming back ....speaking of home-made goodies, there are many like Patholi, Godi Idli, Kall-lailo-pohu, Godu polo, a common Amchigele household! This Godu Appo is traditionally made by soaking whole wheat. But with the passing era, many short cuts have evolved in every field, also in cooking, saving on time and energy! So these appams are made with Rava now at my place and in many households!

The Appey (Konkani name) / Appams(South Indian name) I shall blog below are from my mother, who makes it truly yummy, I never ate less than 10 myself at one go! I have taken the conversions from dear Vee as my amma, makes them with approximative quantity of ingredients. She normally keeps the batter for 15 mins -30 mins but I have followed part instructions from Vee Kay of Past, Present and Me.

Here goes the recipe , once you prepare and taste this delicacy you would know why!

1 cup fine rava(semolina, rulao)
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 cup jaggery (scraped)
1 cup coconut scrapings(preferably white part only)
2 tbspn poha (washed,drained)
1-2 tsp of fresh cardamom powder
Ghee or Oil

Method :
In a mixer blend the coconut with water, use little at a time, into a homogenous mixture.(source-Vee) Add jaggery and blend into one mass. The consistency at this stage will be like that of glue. Add the Rava/Semolina and blend till incorporated into the coco-jag mixture completely. To give this mixture body, add the washed thick poha and blend for another minute.
Set aside to rest for minimum 1 hour. Add the cardamom powder mix well.

Take the special appam pan, it has concave dents/depressions. Pour a tsp oil / ghee into each depression, once it heats up, add one tablespoon of batter into each dent. Cook uncovered on medium flame.(Tks Vee for this tip). Once the sides are browned, flip it over with aid of a knife and spoon. In another minute the other side should be done. Repeat the oil, batter, flip process.

I got 29 appams in my 9 dent pan. It tasted exactly the way amma makes them! Yummy.

Happy Ganeshotsav To All Of You!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Black Forest Cake

Black Forest Cake (BFC) was a new name to me when I was schooling. We had tasted cakes and pastries, but with Monginis' chain of stores setting into Mumbai, we got to hear about new pastries with names! Atleast my mind refused to visualise what Black Forest would be?
When we were treated to it, it turned out to be the most delicious pastry, which till date is my top favourite in pastry or cake, with a crispy crust to die for!! ( We all girls in my ex-office, used to wait for the cake to get over, so that we could share and eat the base too!)

I was inspired by Shilpa to bake, I was mighty impressed with Archana's work of art with baking and icing, and the design for the BFC is basically from her blog.(poorest version of her BFC). Thanks Shilpa of AR and ARchana of Spicyana!

This is my first attempt to whip out an Icing Cake. The photos notably highlights the noviciate nature of BFC. Luckily the taste was fresh and yummy!

To assemble this cake, I needed a crispy crust, nice moist chocolate cake, for filling - Cherry pie syrup and fresh cherries + good icing (to arrive at which icing I needed, I racked my brains and finally settled for fresh cream which originally goes well with a BFC).

Here is the recipe in Four parts :

Ingredients For Moist Chocolate Cake
Betty Crocker's 517 gm Moist Chocolate Cake Mix
3 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/4 cup water

Method For Moist Chocolate Cake :
Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F. Take two 8" round baking pans, grease and flour it lightly. Beat the cake mix, eggs, oil and water in a large bowl on low speed for two minutes. Pour into pans till 3/4 full and bake for 35-40mins or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool on wire rack. Slice off the top portion of both cakes with the aid of a serrated knife.. thinnest slice so the cake shapes up neatly with the extra browned or burnt top gone. Sides need not be touched as they would be covered with icing.

Ingredients For Crispy Crust : original recipe here.
15 Graham Crackers (Honey flavour)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup melted butter

Method For Crust : Break the crackers and combine with sugar, blend till finely powdered. Add the melted butter,blend well. Press to the bottom of an ungreased 8" pie plate. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
In a pre-heated oven, at 375 deg F, bake for 8-10 minutes or until browned lightly.
(Prepare and refrigerate this when cake mix is ready. So once cakes are out of oven, crust can be baked.) Cool it.

Ingredients for Icing :
500 gms whipping cream
4 tbsp powdered sugar
1 tray ice cubes

Method for Icing:
Prepare icing in the end, when you are ready to assemble the cake, for stability of icing.
Firstly the mixing bowl and beaters have to be refrigerated for one hour prior to preparation of icing(if you do not belong to cool temperature places).
Place the cooled bowl into a tray of ice cubes, beat the whipped cream and sugar on low speed until the volume is doubled and soft peaks form. DO NOT over beat. Refrigerate the icing till you are ready to assemble the cake.

Ingredients for filling and garnishing :
Fresh pitted cherries 25-30 approx
6-8 tbspns of cherry syrup
Chocolate Shavings (Cadbury's Dairy Milk Bar) Refrigerated

Method :
Keeping aside 10 cherries for garnishing, cut the remaining cherries into halves. Open the tin ready made of cherry syrup, keep handy while assembling.

Now comes the assembling part.

How to Assemble the Cake :

1. On a serving plate, place the crispy crust.
2. Spread the cherry syrup evenly on the crust. This acts as glue to the cake layer.
3. Place the first cake on top of this. Apply a layer of cherry syrup on the top of this cake.
4. Bring out the refrigerated whipped cream icing, fill in two or three tbspn in the piping bag.
5. Spread the icing upto 1 " layer, on the top of cherry syrup layer. Embed the chopped cherries as below. (Archana has used a flan ring which is best for assembling cakes)

6. Place the second layer of cake, spread the icing and level it. (as below)

7. Garnish first with chocolate shavings which is done by holding the cold chocolate bar on top of this cake and scraping it with a serrated knife to evenly cover the top.

8. Pipe some icing on the cake in circular pattern as one cherry in each circle.

9. Decorate further if you want to with the piping bag and correct nossle. Refrigerate for the icing to set for 2-3 hours.

10. Voila!! BFC ready to be relished!!!!!

I had no proper equipments hence I assembled this cake in a casserole!
But it was fun baking and assembling it! It is more enjoyable as I am narrating this!
It took me hours (in bits and pieces) to put this cake together, so as to present it to you too!
Hope you all like it!!


Thursday, September 20, 2007

Sabudana Khichdi / Sago Khichdi

Sabudana or Sago is used in many snacks and sweet items in India. The khichidi made out of it, is usually consumed as 'Fasting' item. This dish has many variations and one of my UP'ite friend had a different way of making it. I have not got her recipe with me though.

My SIL and MIL make this very deliciously! I have picked quite a few but important hints of preparing this from Shilpa's blog too.

Ingredients :
1 cup sabudana
2 medium potatoes skinned
1/2 cup roasted skinless peanuts
3 sprigs of curry leaves
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 green chillies
2 tsp sugar
3/4th tsp salt
2 tbspn fresh coconut (scraped)
2 tbspn ghee / oil

Method :

Wash & soak sabudana for 30 minutes in water previous night, drain water and keep covered in a colander for 8 hours or till morning)-this is most important step..tip is from Shilpa.
Loosen the grains of sabudana in case they are stuck to each other, with hand or spoon.
Crush the peanuts coarsely. Add the crushed peanuts, sugar and salt to sabudana and keep aside. Chop the potatoes into tiny cubes, slit the green chillies.

In a kadhai(heavy bottom kadhai) take ghee or oil, add cumin seeds. Once they splutter, add curry leaves and green chillies. Add the diced potatoes and saute for some time. Cover and cook for five minutes till potatoes are cooked.

Add the sabudana mixture and stir in properly. Cover and cook on low flame for another 5-7 minutes, stirring every minute. When the sabudana turns transparent, its done. Put off the gas.
Add the coconut and serve hot!

A tasty treat isn't it?

Lemon & Ginger Tea

Tea is a common or household name in every Indian house. At my place only black strong tea, with a dash of milk and sugar is consumed in mornings and evenings! All the tide moving in healthy consumption, me and hubby took a step towards switching over to health tea!

The range of chamomile tea (acidity regulator), green tea ( for cholestrol control), lemon and ginger tea ( for good digestion) are now lined up in our pantry and being consumed too!

Wikipedia says - "There is archaeological evidence that suggests that tea has been consumed for almost 5000 years, with India and China being two of the first countries to cultivate it. Green tea has been used as traditional medicine in areas such as India, China, Japan and Thailand to help everything from controlling bleeding and helping heal wounds to regulating body temperature, blood sugar and promoting digestion." Read more on tea culture here.

Ingredients :
1 sachet tea bag
200 ml drinking water
2 tsp honey

Method :
Boil the water over gas stove or microwave on high power for one minute.
Dip the bag and leave it in for infusion 3-5 minutes.
Stir with spoon and press the sachet if you need strong taste. Dispose the sachet. Add honey, mix and drink when hot.

To all the tea lovers......Isn't tea the best nourishing beverage with hint of medicinal values the best thing to happen?? It is !!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Khaara Lassi / Spicy Buttermilk / Namkeen Chaas / Taak

Few days of summer left here, with the climate turning pleasant and after few days we shall be exposed to harsh winter! So why not enjoy a drink which cools the throat and body, quenches thirst and makes one nostalgic.

This buttermilk drink called 'Taak' is a famous Konkani drink, usually served after a festive meal, post wedding luncheon etc. It is loved by all age groups.

There is no hard and fast rule in preparing this. Many variations are available, some add curry leaves too. This recipe below is my and family's favourite. (My Amma and Hubby like it a lot besides me!) Use buttermilk, dilute with water ratio water: buttermilk 3:1 (for 200 ml serving)
OR use curd/ yoghurt as below :

Ingredients : ( makes two glasses)
2 tbspn curd / yoghurt
400 ml water
1 inch fresh ginger root
1 green chilli
1/2 pinch hing (asafoetida)
salt to taste

Method :
With the help of a spoon or hand mixer, beat the curd adding water little by little and finally mix the entire volume of water to curd. Add salt and hing powder, mix and keep aside. This dilution of curd is our buttermilk now! Crush the ginger and chilli with aid of mortar and pestle till finely crushed. Add the same to the diluted curd / buttermilk. Refrigerate before serving or drink as is! Relish it!

BAC Bread (Banana-Almond-Coconut)

The moment I saw this recipe here on Meena's blog, (a recipe developer, consultant & food writer) I was sure I would bake it, as it was a easy hassle free way to make bread. The preparation time and baking time was 45 minutes. The bread was semi-moist and my family liked it. It has aroma of banana, mingled taste of almond, coconut and banana! Thanks to Meenakshi Agarwal for blogging so beautifully about it.

Here are the ingredients and directions :

Ingredients :
2 ripened bananas
1/4th cup granulated sugar
1/4 th cup melted butter
1 tsp clear vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup dessicated coconut
1/2 cup sliced almonds

Method :
Mash the bananas, add melted butter, sugar with a hand mixer ensure it is mixed evenly. Add essence. Sift together the dry ingredients, that is , flour , baking powder and baking soda, add it spoon by spoon into the mixture and incorporate it well. Add the coconut and sliced almonds, mix well. Grease or line a baking pan with parchment paper and fill it 3/4th of the pan. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Check by inserting till a knife or toothpick comes out clean.

Photo at the original recipe, is lovely too. Its a time saver and delicious bread too.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Eggless Dates Cake

Yummy dates cake, eggless, butterless that too!! Shilpa was the lady who was persistant I take to baking, try this cake out from her blog. I prepared this for the first time and burnt it. But being a first time baker, this incident didn't dampen my spirits. I tried it again after 3-4 days. The result was a lovely moist date cake, which, as per Shilpa, spread the date cake fever around!! I have prepared it half-a-dozen times till date!

Shilpa, simple thanks to you, for making me bake and prepare this 'love of the family, friends & neighbourhood' cake! I am not too good with photography, hence the above snaps doesn't allot justice to the flavour and looks of this cake.

This recipe is a dates recipe, varieties of dates are available in market. The ideal ones to be used here are Khajoor. The dried ones are called Khareek. Dates also have great medicinal values.

Here is the recipe :

Ingredients :
18 dates (seeded) wet dates
3/4th cup milk
3/4th cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup all-purpose flour/maida
1 tsp baking soda
1 tbspn walnuts chopped

Method :
Soak the dates overnight in 3/4th cup milk. De-seed it. If its very wet in texture, you may skip the soaking step. De-seed the dates and use.
In a blender, take sugar, milk and dates and blend till dates are coarsely chopped. (Pieces of dates in cake tastes yummy while you eat the cake. If not, then blend to a smooth paste). Add oil and blend till it mixes well. Take the mixture out. Sift flour with baking soda, add spoon by spoon in this mixture till its incorporated. Add walnuts mix well with a spoon.
Take a 8" round pan or bakeware of your choice (9" x 5" loafware too works fine.) Grease the pan with generous amount of butter and flour.(click on the word 'grease' for a video on how to grease & flour). OR You can line it with a waxed paper/ parchment paper. Pour this mixture in the greased pan.
Pre-heat oven for 10 minutes on 375 degrees F. Bake for 35-40 mins, or check for readiness with a toothpick, bake till insterted toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan for 5-7 mins. Take it out of pan on a wire rack or an aluminium foil. Cool it completely and cut into slices. Yummy Dates-Cake Ready to be savoured! The above quantity gives 12 big pieces.(Ref-RHS pic).

Lemon Grass Kashayam/Takka Tana Kasayu/Kadha for Cold

'Kasayu' as we call it in Konkani, has played a vital role in relieving cold since my childhood.
I am not too sure if all Konkani households prepare this concoction for cold. The lemon grass commonly known as "Takkatana" in Konkani is the vital ingredient used. This drink has a longer effect on cold and fights cold effectively than any other home remedies.
This is how lemon grass looks. The top left picture of grass is the main ingredient. It is folded neatly and sold as bundles. One bundle of grass is utilized for one time use.
The other ingredient, rock candy too is second main ingredient, a form of sugar and is known to be effective in coughs. It is called Khadi Sakhar in Konkani,Marathi. Kalkandam in Malayalam.
You may sweeten this Kashayam more, if it is being consumed by a kid.

How to prepare :

Ingredients :
1 bunch of lemon grass
2 inch fresh ginger piece / dried ginger piece(soonthi) 1"
2 tbspn coriander seeds
1 tbpsn black peppercorns
150 gms rock candy (Khadi sakhar)
1 litre water

Method :
In a pan bring to boil the water and sugar. Lower the flame and with the help of a mortar & pestle, crush the lemon grass, till slight juice is released, the ginger piece (soonthi recommended, if not available resort to fresh ginger) if fresh crush till juice is released and add to boiling water, crush the peppercorns and coriander seeds a bit, add to the water. Boil covered, and put off the flame. Drink when hot.

PS : If serving for kids, add a little milk - ratio 3:1 kashayam: milk.
Use a strainer to hold back the sediments.

The shelf life is only one day. Hence if you make it in morning, drink a glass, and re-heat and drink in the evening. Throw away if there is any leftover after that as it will get spoilt. Donot refrigerate.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Malai Modak

I was new to blogging then. I was happily reading Shilpa's recipe. There was a comment from Vee, which showed a link to her site. I went there, just curious to see what posts this Lady had....I was totally mesmerized with her narrative!! She is a gifted writer I should say!

Having a weakness for mithais, especially pedhas, barfis, bengali sweets etc....I got hooked on to this recipe which I found here-
Thanks to Vee Kay for posting this lovely recipe.

I kept drooling, in my mind the thought of preparing it appeared--the sooner the better !!
I was truly happiest with the results ! Made this thrice already due to the lovely taste!

Ingredients :
250 gms Ricotta Cheese
250 gms thick whole milk cream
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp cardamom powder
few strands kesar (saffron)
2 tbspn Desi Ghee (Amul)

Method :
Take a heavy bottom, wide pan. Heat the ricotta cheese on medium flame,with continuous stirring for 5 minutes. The cheese will first melt and again regain its texture. Add the cream, stir till the liquid dries out. Crush the kesar with fingers(for best colour) and add it. Keep stiring all the keep the mixture from burning or sticking to bottom! Keep stirring till you obtain the original cheese texture for approx 10 minutes. Add sugar, increase the flame, cook till it forms a ball. Put off the gas. Add ghee and cardamom powder. Mix very well. Cool it and shape into modaks! The number of Modaks depend on the size you have made. Makes 21-25 modaks.

Vee I sincerely thank thee, for thou hast bringeth this lovely recipe on Past,present and meeeeeee!!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Black Channa Curry / Channya Gushii

This curry with Black channa has been my favourite since childhood. Kids simply love boiled & salted channas. My mom and her sisters make this curry so delicious, one can simply sit and eat this curry by itself.

Ingredients :
1 cup black chana (soaked overnight)
1 cup freshly scraped/dessicated/frozen coconut
3/4 tsp tamarind pulp
3-5 bedgi red chillies
1/2 tsp fenugreek/methi seeds
1 tsp mustard/ rai seeds
3-5 stems curry leaves
1 tbpsn coconut oil
Salt to taste

Method :
Pressure cook the soaked channas with 4-5 cups of water, for upto 6 whistles. Blend to paste - coconut, tamarind pulp and red chillies with water to obtain thick consistency. Take this paste in the pan you would be cooking in. Add water to thin it, if needed, add salt. Bring it to one boil on medium flame.
Add the chana only-retain the water that has been used to boil it (there is a saaru which is made of this water which I shall blog about soon!) Let the masala get absorbed by channas, after which there will be another boil. Put off the flame. Take tadka pan, add coconut oil, once heated, add rai. On spluttering of rai, add methi seeds and put off the flame. Add curry leaves.
Pour it on the channa curry, cover with lid for 5 minutes for the fresh tadka flavour.
Serve when hot with rice or chapathis.

Try this variety from Shilpa - at Aayis Recipes. Link below.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Crispy Chicken

Crispy is the word for this chicken. Its impossible to lay your hands off this one! Do try it. Its crispy fried chicken rolled in sauce.

Step 1
Ingredients :

For Frying - Step 1
1 boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into bite sized pieces.
1 tbspn corn flour
1/4 tsp pepper powder
Salt to taste.
Oil for deep frying

Method For Frying - Step 1
Mix all the ingredients and deep fry till crispy and set aside on paper towel.

Step 2
Ingredients :

For Sauce - Step 2
1 small onion diced finely
1 tsp ginger finely chopped
1 tsp garlic finely chopped
2 tbspn tomato ketchup
1 tsp red chilli paste
1 tbpsn Oyster sauce
1 tbspn oil
Greens of one spring onion for garnishing (Chopped)

Method For Sauce - Step 2
Take oil in pan, add onions, garlic, ginger, saute till the onions are transculent. Add the tomato sauce, chilli paste, oyster sauce. Just when you are ready to eat, add the sauce to the fried chicken, mix in well, garnish with greens of spring onion.

Tasty when hot! So please eat it hot.
The above pic doesn't have greens of onion as I didn't have a stock of it then.

Tips : The chicken takes time to get deep fried, remove only when the colour turns golden brown. Heat the oil, once hot, fry on low flame. Over frying will make the chicken chewy.

Use Oyster Sauce only as the flavour is given to this dish by this ingredient.
(You may use mildly sweet soy sauce, if you don't have oyster sauce on hand, but the original flavour will differ!)

Chicken Curry

Chicken curry has always been my favourite. Especially this one.
The taste of spices and curd based gravy gives it an exotic taste.
My husband and kids are great fans of this curry.

Ingredients :
1 kg chicken (wt bone)
1 cup curd
1 tbspn ginger garlic paste
4 medium red onions
4 tomatoes
2 tbspn coriander powder
3 tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp garam masala powder(meant for chicken)
5-6 sprigs of coriander leaves
3 tbspn oil

Method :
Wash and cut chicken into pieces. Marinate the chicken pieces with ginger garlic paste in the night and refrigerate. In the morning, marinate again with curd and keep aside. By noon the chicken becomes tender. Take a kadhai , slice the onions and fry them in 2 tbpsn of oil, till light brown. Take half of these fried onions and keep aside for cooling. In the remaining onions, add the chicken pieces, cook on medium flame, covered. In another pan, take 1 tbpsn oil, add the chopped tomatoes, fry them till mushy. Cool it. In a blender, blend the cooled onions, tomatoes, along with red chilli powder and coriander powder. Once the chicken is boiled, (ensure to stir once in a while) add the blended mixture, stir and bring it to one more boil. Add salt. Add garam masala, stir for 2 minutes and put off the flame. (Garam masala is added in the end so that the flavour is fresh.) Add the finely chopped coriander leaves and cover the lid for 20 mins. This is done so that the flavour is incorporated evenly.
Serve with rice / chapathis.

This curry is amazingly yummy! This is my mother-in-law's recipe. Deepest thanks to her for introducing this in my diet! Thanks Amma!

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Methi / Fenugreek Seeds Laddoos-Medicinal

Post-delivery, all new moms face lot of problems, one of them is ache in the back/spine. These laddoos have methi (fenugreek seeds) in them which have the property to resurrect back as per our forefathers, plus produce more milk which is true. Two of these a day truly aid the back to recover soon!

Wikipedia says -"Fenugreek is mainly used as digestive aid, its ideal for treating sinus and lung congestion, reducing inflammation, and fighting infection. Fenugreek seed is widely used as a galactagogue (milk producing agent) by nursing mothers to increase inadequate breast milk supply.

Supplements of fenugreek seeds were shown to lower serum cholesterol, triglyceride, and low-density lipoprotein in human patients.Several human intervention trials demonstrated that the antidiabetic effects of fenugreek seeds ameliorate most metabolic symptoms associated with type-1 and type-2 diabetes .In recent research, fenugreek seeds were shown to protect against experimental cancers of the breast and colon . In India it is also called methi dana." For more info, please visit the link

Moving to our recipe, Methi Laddoo... here are the details.

Ingredients :

2 cup whole wheat flour(gehu ka atta)

1 1/4 cup powdered sugar

1 1/2 cup ghee (+ 1tsp for binding)

1 1/2 tbsp methi seeds

1 tbsp cumin seeds(jeera)

1 1/2 tbsp fennel seeds (saunf)

Method :
In a small tadka pan, dry roast methi, jeera,saunf on low flame till lovely aroma is given off. Put off the flame. Cool it, grind it into fine powder.
In a heavy bottom kadai, heat the ghee and add atta. Roast on medium flame, till the atta turns brown and emits lovely aroma. It takes approx. 15 mins till done. Once done, lower the flame and add the spices powder. Mix in well. Then add sugar and combine it till incorporated properly. Put off the gas at this point. Let it cool for around 15min uncovered.

Apply little ghee on both palms and bind the above mixture into laddoos.
With the above quantity you can make approx 27-30 medium sized laddoos. Place into airtight container. Shelf life is 20 days. Remember, it has a bitter aftertaste. Hence do not compare with other sweet laddoos.

Tip : If you want to have it rolled into khus-khus, please use more ghee i.e 2 cups so that the laddoos bind good enough to get the khus khus stuck on it when rolled.

Desi ghee is rich in calcium, hence post delivery, most of the ladies have to consume it. Others also can consume it for good health. Diabetics can use sweetners instead of sugar during preparing this.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Chocolate Chip Cookies

These cookies have been always there in pictures or in shops but the idea of making these never crossed my mind! I was going through Hershey's semi-sweet choc. chips (12 oz) packet for details where this recipe was printed, I immediately thought of baking these. I did bake cookies for the first time, and they were really good, my kids liked the taste!

Here goes the recipe...

Ingredients :
2 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks (200gms/1 cup) butter at room temp.
3/4th cup granulated sugar
3/4th cup packed light brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 eggs
2 cups(12 oz) Hershey's semi-sweet chocolate chips

Method :
Preheat the oven to 375 deg. F. Sift together the flour, baking soda, salt. In another bowl beat the butter, sugars,vanilla essence with an electric beater till creamy. Add eggs one by one while still beating. Mix the flour spoon by spoon. In the end, stir the chocolate chips.
Drop the mixture with the aid of a round spoon, on a ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for ten minutes or until the sides are browned. Do not worry if the center top looks mushy. Cool it slighlty and take it off the sheet, cool it on wire racks, it shall turn crispy. Store in air-tight container. (Makes approx 5 dozens)

Tip : If you do not want to make the above quantity at one go, you may bake few cookies and store the cookies batter in deep freezer in a zip-lock bag, ensure to press out any air from it, use it within two weeks. OR Take only half the ingredients to prepare lesser amount.

All those of you who have loved cookies, should at least once, give this Cookie a try.
Yum-Yum cookie.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Tantalising Cofffffffeeeeee

I began to eat from those who cooked, so to start on, I would like to pay a homage to my Mother, my Aunt, my Mother-in-law and her Mother, my Sister-in-laws for their lovely culinary that I have always relished!

To begin with, I need to thank profusely dear Shilpa of Aayis Recipes' fame, whose discovery was accidental in this web world, but not only did I get hooked on to her recipes, I loved cooking what she put on her lovely page etched with the minutest details, tips and photographs. The turning point came, when she became my inspiration in the world of baking! I went ahead bought myself an oven(courtesy pati-dev) set to baking after lot of research on the same. So generous amounts of "Thanks" to my first and ever blog I initially visited. Shilpa is an extremely dedicated and 'sincere to blog' type of person...very humble too! Shilpa is the inspiration behind my own blog too! THANK YOU SHILPA.
The other blogger who boggled my mind was Archana with her lovely blog "Spicyana"...her baking skills are to die for and all her other skills...she is a virtuoso in everything!
One more special blogger is Vee of Past,Present and Me fame, has people in splits with the lovely write-up that accompanies her dishes!

Now all thanks-giving over, I am returning to what I love making/preparing the most to begin my first post with...Coffee...yup I am a coffee lover and prepare it the way that suits my tastebuds the most! So heregoes...

Ingredients :
1 cup milk (I prefer low fat)
1 tsp instant coffee powder
Sugar to taste (2 tsp)
Cinnamon powder - a pinch for garnish(optional)

Method :
Heat the milk, just enough warm. Pour in a cup over sugar and coffee powder, mix wt spoon.
I usually use a hand blender to obtain a frothy cup of coffee. Sprinkle some cinammon powder, Njoi!!!