Wednesday, October 29, 2008
I made three pizzas, 5" each. I tried tossing the dough but ended up tearing them and so resorted to flattening them using my fingers.
Each pizza was different in their toppings.I made two sauces, a tomato sauce and a peanut butter tomato sauce. Though the latter was an experimentation, it won the vote at home.
Blanch 6 tomatoes. SKin, dessed and chop them and grind to a paste. Boil this paste with 1 tbsp of chilli powder, 1 1/2 tbsp of ginger/garlic paste, 2tsps of sugar, and two pieces of cinnamon.
To the above 1 cup of tomato sauce, add 2tbsp of peanut butter and 1 tsp of soya sauce. Bring this to a boil until you get the required consistency.
The following pizzas were relished...
1. Mushroom/Celery/Sesame Seeds Pizza with peanutbutter-Tomato Sauce
Sesame seeds, garlic and mushrooms were sauteed in oil. Chopped celery, capsicums and soya sauce followed. The sauce used was the Peanutbutter-Tomato sauce.
2. Tandoori Paneer/Capsicum Pizza
Cubed paneer were marinated ina paste that conatined yoghurt, ginger/garlic paste, chilli powder and salt for a couple of hours. The tomato pizza sauce was used on the base followed by a sprinkling of mozzarella cheese. Paneer, capsicum were then layered and mozzarella cheese were sprinkled further and this was baked.
3. Corn/Minced Meat Pizza
The tomato pizza sauce was used here. The minced meat was boiled with salt and pepper and this along with boiled sweet corn topped the base. Mozzarella was added and was baked for a yummy treat.
I still prefer my readymade pizza bases owing to my laziness I guess..
I personally enjoyed the making, failed tossing and eating it.
The peanutbutter-tomato sauced pizza was the most preferred by all who got to taste it. So did I owing probably to the other flavours being used to the palate... The kids loved the corn and the meat...
Ultimately a fun challenge.....
Monday, October 27, 2008
I was and am still fond of Enid Blyton books. The adventures and fantasies in the books are probably the reason. Her series on the bible still remains a prized possession to me. The magical world of elves, gnomes, fairies etc and the toys coming to life are amongst some of the books I have reading out to my 4 year old. She has begun to believe that her toys come to life in the night.
Amongst all of Blyton's books, The Naughtiest Girl in the School has been my favourite. Out came the book from the book shelf and I was glad to have indulged in it....this time I read it out to my daughter. though...
In the book, Elizabeth Allen refuses to share her cake and sweets and ends up not getting to eat the chocolate cake that is being passed around the table.
"Elizabeth watched the others munching the chocolate cake, which looked and smelt marvellous, and longed for a piece"
So, Elizabeth, this chocolate cake is for you!( Recipe From the Good Cook, Cakes & pastries)
Grate 125g of plain chocolate. Beat egg whites of 5 eggs to stiff peaks and set aside. Beat 5 egg yolks and 250 g castor sugar to a thick and pale mixture. Add in 125g of softened butter and the grated chocolate. Gradually add in 125 g of sifted flour. Fold in the egg whites and transfer this to a pan and bake until done.
And MBP:Sauces is still awaiting entries, because I am extending the event until the 31 of October!
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
There is nothing better than making your own sauce...Since I started making my own sauces, I have kept away from store-bought ones. I made apple sauce and am glad I did... I was weighed down by the thought of peeling,coring and chopping...All that seemed oblivious when I had a taste of this treat...
I followed this, but adapted it to my taste.
What you need for the sauce are:
500 g apples, peeled, cored and chopped
2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp Honey (
Adjust according to taste. You could use either sugar or honey)
1" Cinnamon Stick
1tsp Lemon Zest
In a pan, add the chopped apples, sugar, honey,water, spices, zest and boil. Simmer until the apples turn soft. Remove the spices, zest if you can and discard them.
Mash with a wooden spoon to smoothen it. If you want a very smooth consistency,run this in a blender and your treat is ready!
My Mother on the other hand makes the apple sauce with the peels on and that lent the sauce a pale pink colour.. She even added some butter for a smoother and silkier sauce.
Monday, October 20, 2008
Have you heard about the Cake Slice Bakers? A wonderful group of bakers started by Gigi and Katie.
What we do is bake a chosen recipe from the book, Sky High: Irresistible Triple Layer Cakes by Alicia Huntsman and Peter Wynne.Today happens to be the day we all post our first chosen recipe from the above-said book. And the chosen recipe was a Cappuccino Chiffon Cake.
CAPPUCCINO CHIFFON CAKE
Makes an 8-inch triple layer cake
1/4 cup of neutral oil (ie. vegetable, canola, or soybean)
6 eggs separated
6 tablespoons of freshly brewed espresso cooled to room temperature
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
1 and 1/3 cups of cake flour*
1 and 1/2 cups of sugar
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of cream of tartar
Cocoa powder or cinnamon for dusting
(*The recipe calls for cake flour and if you only have all-purpose flour on hand, you can substitute 3/4 cup (105 grams) all purpose flour plus 2 tablespoons (30 grams) cornstarch.)
1/3 cup hot freshly brewed espresso
1/3 cup of sugar
1/3 cup dark rum, such as Meyers*
(*if you want to leave out the rum you can use molasses thinned with pineapple juice and flavored with almond extract to equal 1/3 cup. Or use 1 to 2 teaspoons of rum extract flavoring but you'll have less syrup.)
Vanilla Whipped Cream
3 cups of heavy cream
1/3 cup of sugar
2 teaspoons of vanilla
1. Preheat the oven to 350F degrees. Line the bottom s of three 8-inch round cake pans with parchment paper but do not grease.
2. In a medium bowl, combine the oil, egg yolks, espresso, and vanilla; whisk lightly to blend. In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, 1 cup of sugar, the baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.
3. In the large bowl of an electric mixer, whip the egg whites with the cream of tartar on medium-low speed until frothy. Raise the mixer to medium high and gradually add the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar. Continue to beat until soft peaks form. Do not whip to stiff peaks or the cake will shrink upon cooling.
4. Add the espresso-egg mixture to the dry ingredients and fold together just until combined. Add one fourth of the egg whites and fold them gently into the batter. Fold in the remaining egg whites just until no streaks remain. Divide the batter among the pans.
5. Bake the cakes for 18 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Allow the cakes to cool completely in the pans. Once cooled run a knife around the edge of the pans to release the cakes. Invert onto a wire rack and remove the parchment papers.
6. To assemble the cake, place one cake layer flat side up on a cake stand or platter. Soak the cake with 1/3 cup of the espresso syrup. Spread 1 and 1/3 cups of whipped cream evenly over the top of the cake. Repeat with the next layer the same steps. Finally top with the third layer. Soak with syrup and frost the top and sides of the cake with the whipped cream.
7. To decorate the cake smooth out the whipped cream as much as possible on top. Lay a paper doily on top and sift cocoa powder or cinnamon over the doily to reveal a lacy detail.
makes 1 cup
In a bowl, stir together the espresso and sugar. Stir until the sugar dissolves. Add the rum and let cool to room temperature.
Vanilla Whipped Cream
makes 6 cups
Place the cream, sugar, and vanilla in large chilled mixing bowl with chilled beaters. With the whip attachment, beat the cream until stiff peaks form.
1. I halved the recipe and made a rectangular cake and cut them into small roundels and layered them into three tiers to make two small cakes.
2. I did not use rum.Cake flour was substituted with AP Flour and Cornstarch.
3. A mild cake with a subtle taste of coffee. I was glad that this wasn't overtly sweet inspite of the amount used.
4. Light, flavourful and I was enamoured by the aroma of espresso that had gone into it.
5. The texture was a unique one probably owing to the use of vegetable oil in place of butter.
6. An elegant cake with no leftovers!!!
If you were delighted by what you just saw, see what the other members have in store.
This delight is off to grace Meeta's Monthly Mingle.
And yes, entries welcome for MBP:Sauces. For details, Click on the MBP icon on the right bar.
Saturday, October 18, 2008
For me a salad was tossing a few veggies or greens ina bowl. I always channeled my attention to the main dish. Of recent, I have started experimenting more with salads and realized there is so much choice. A zesty dressing is another wide area.
Here''s a basic salad to start with.
Boil 2 cups of green peas. Saute a minced onion in oil. Hardboil 2 eggs. Chop them into pieces.
Mix peas,onion and chopped eggs.
Combine 2 tbsps of mayonnaise,1tbsp chilli sauce,1tsp mustard powder. Season with salt and pepper.Add this to the peas mixture.
Serve with grilled bread logs on the side.
This salad is off to the Fourth Helping of My Legume Love Affair.
I am republishing an earlier post of a comfort food of mine; a yellow pumpkin curry.
This is my entry to AFAM:Pumpkin.
And yes, entries welcome for MBP:Sauces.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
I have made bread quite a many times. The results...some good...some bad...some not worth the effort...Right ingredients and the right techniques yield a good bread. This bread made of honey and milk is rich and deserves to be blogged about.
What you need are:
1.5 cups of whole wheat flour
1 cup warm water
3/4 cup AP flour
1 cup milk
50 ml honey (add more depending on the sweetness level desired.)
1 tsp salt
2 tsps yeast
a bit of sugar to get the yeast started
Proof the yeast in warm water until it turns frothy. Add in whole wheat flour, milk, honey, salt, and AP flour mix them well.
Knead the dough until you get a pliable dough. Set this dough in an oiled bowl to rise for 2 hours or until it doubles in volume.
Shape the dough and place in a greased bread pan. Cover loosely with cling film and set aside for another 2 hours.
Slash the surface and Bake the bread until the bottom of the bread sounds hollow.Allow to cool completely and only then slice.
Honey is used instead of sugar in this bread, which lends a distinct flavour to the bread. With the hint of flavour and the aroma of honey, it was a pleasant bread. The crumb was soft and airy and a chewy crust!!!
A wholesome bounty finally!!
This whole wheat bread with honey goes to World Bread Day '08.
And yes, MBP-sauces is still on.....the response has been very low though!!!
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Anyways getting back on track, this is what I made for a gathering of 25 people as appetizers. Tiny pleasures of mushroom and corn served in mini tart shells and canapes. The best thing about these mini bites are the versatility in fillings.
Aparna and I baked something amazing from Italy this time.
And yes, a reminder for MBP-Sauces as well...
Monday, October 13, 2008
I am back after a relaxing vacation. Travelled quite a bit, ate like a glutton, which I normally do when it is homefood that isn't cooked by me.
Here is something easy and quick that I made, cheese nibbles, to get me back in the groove. Light, bite-sized and a nibble that you wouldn't want to stop with just one......
What you need for the nibbles are:
Butter-3/4 cup (cold)
Salt - 1 tsp
Chilli Powder - 1 tsp
Grated cheese - 100 gms (I used Cheddar Cheese)
Sift, flour, salt and chilli powder. Add the cold butter and mix to make a dough that resembles bread crumbs. Lightly beat the egg and fold into the flour. Add the grated cheese and bring the mixture together using cold/chilled water. Do not knead.
Chill the dough for atleast 20 mins. Roll it out and cut them into shapes. Lightly brush these with egg and bake until they turn a lovely golden.
Remove from the oven when done, cool and eat them right away or store them for later indulgence.
And I was enthusiastic about guest-hosting an event and am a wee bit disappinted about the number of entries that came in so far...So do get thinking sauces... :) ..
Thursday, October 2, 2008
The name Harry Potter has never intrigued me until I saw the hype created out here where I live during the releases and the queues just to get the book the day of the release. There were also these Harry potter themed parties that was in vogue during a period. One such crazy day, I bought the book (Chamber of Secrets) all to know what the hype was all about. I still haven't figured the reason though!!! What interests me in the book are the author's talent for creating intriguing names, such as Severus Snape, Albus Dumbledore and the like.
What I made for the booker's Club, is Harry Potter's favourite dessert, Treacle tart. I searched for recipes for the tart and there were several many, each different in their own way. I finally decided to follow this.
I made 6 tartlets with the help of a fan of the book herself, who wanted to make a trellis pattern. She didn't want help, wanted to do it her way. Talk about children wanting to listen.....
What you need are:
1 1/4 cups flour
1 pinch salt
1/4 lb butter,
2 tablespoons fine sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 cup golden syrup
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Prepare the pastry as for pie crust and chill for 30 minutes.
Roll out and reserve the scraps if doing a trellis. Trim the edges and retain the scraps. Preheat oven to 400°F. Mix the oats, and zest and sprinkle half in the pastry. Pour on the syrup and lemon juice and sprinkle rest of oat mixture on top.
Roll out any remaining pastry and cut strips to lay a trellis over the tart if desired. Bake for 30 minutes and serve hot or cold.
See what the other members of the book club have to offer:
The book for the month of October is The Naughtiest Girl in School, a book I grew up on. Do join us...it is fun to cook inspired by a book.
And yes, do send in your entries for MBP-Sauces. I am expecting a lot of entries and do not disappoint me :) .