Thursday, December 20, 2012

Vanilla Condensed Milk Cake

1 1/3 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
225g butter (1 cup - 2 sticks), room temperature
3 eggs, room temperature
2 tsp vanilla paste or extract
3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Grease and flour a medium loaf pan or any pan of your choice and set aside.
Whisk flour, salt and baking powder together in a bowl and set aside.
Beat sugar and butter together until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, and mix until well combined. Add the vanilla and condensed milk and mix until well combined.
Add the flour and fold in with a spatula until just incorporated.
Pour the batter into the pan.
Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 50 – 55 minutes. Cool cake in the pan for ten minutes before turning out to cool completely on a wire rack.
The cake is crisper outside and moist inside. 

Recipe Courtesy:

Marshmallow Fondant Cake

Mini Marshmallows - 2 cups
Confectioners Sugar/Icing Sugar - 5-6 cups
Vanilla Extract - 1 tsp
Water - 2 tbspns

Place the marshmallows, water and vanilla extract in a large microwave-safe bowl, and microwave on high for 30 seconds to 1 minute to start melting the marshmallows. Carefully stir until the mixture is smooth. 

Be prepared to be messy. Slowly add the confectioners' sugar, a cup at a time, until you have a sticky dough. 
Now place a parchment paper on the granite top(need more space) and dust with 2 cups of confectioners sugar. Turn the dough out onto the working surface dusted with confectioners sugar. Rub both the hands with butter and start kneading until the dough is very stiff. 

As you knead, the dough will become workable and pliable. Continue kneading until the fondant is smooth and no longer sticky to the touch, 5 to 10 minutes.
Form the fondant into a ball, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight. To use, allow the fondant to come to room temperature, and roll it out onto a flat surface dusted with confectioners' sugar.

Adding Colors to the Fondant;
Using a toothpick, add dots of icing color or drops of flavor in several spots.
Knead color or flavor into your fondant ball. Use food-safe gloves when coloring fondant to keep hands stain-free or else rub the hands with butter. Continue kneading until color is evenly blended; add a little more color or flavor if needed. 
For deep colors;
When making deep colors, such as black, brown, or red use the food colors in larger amounts than normal. 

Can be stored in the refrigerator for a month.

Covering Cake with the Rolled Fondant;
Cake - 1 round cake(your choice)
Butter Cream - 1 Box

Prepare cake by lightly covering with butter cream icing. Keep refrigerated for atleast 1 hour.

Bring the fondant to room temperature. Before rolling out fondant, knead it until it is in a workable consistency. If fondant is sticky, knead in a little confectioners' sugar. Lightly dust your smooth work surface and the rolling pin with confectioners' sugar to prevent sticking. Roll out fondant, sized to your cake. To keep fondant from sticking, lift and move as you roll. Add more confectioners' sugar if needed.

Gently lift fondant over rolling pin or slip cake circle under fondant to move; position on cake.
Shape fondant to sides of cake with Easy-Glide Smoother or the pizza spoon. We recommend using the Smoother because the pressure of your hands may leave impressions on the fondant. Beginning in the middle of the cake top, move the Smoother outward and down the sides to smooth and shape fondant to the cake and remove air bubbles. If an air bubble appears, insert a pin on an angle, release air and smooth the area again. Use the straight edge of the Smoother to mark fondant at the base of cake. Trim off excess fondant using a spatula or sharp knife.

The cake is now ready to decorate.
Roll the green fondant into small balls. Brush the corners with little water and start sealing the corners with the balls.

Cut the yellow fondant using the cookie cutter. Make small balls out of blue fondant and stick it to the yellow flower with little water. Now place the entire yellow flower in the cake by brushing with little water.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Curd Semiya/Semiya Bath

Vermicelli/Semiya(not roasted) - 1 cup
Milk - 1 cup
Curd - 1  cup
Water -2 1/2 cup

Butter - 1 tbspn

For the seasoning;

Oil - 1 1/2 tsp
Mustard - 1 tsp
Asafoetida/ hing - a pinch
Ginger - 1 inch piece finely chopped
Green chili - 1 finely chopped
Curry leaves - few

For garnishing (optional);

Green Bell Pepper - 1 tbspn, chopped finely
Grated carrots
Green seedless grapes
Cashew nuts
Cook semiya in boiling water adding salt and a tsp of oil. Stir now and then to prevent it from forming lumps.
After it is cooked, add milk stirring continuously. Remove from flame. Add butter and mix it well. Butter is added to maintain the consistency for a longer time.
Allow it to cool. Then add curd and mix well.
Heat a tsp of oil, add mustard seeds, when it splutters, add hing, ginger, green chilies, curry    leaves and saute for a few seconds. Mix it with the cooked semiya.
Garnish with coriander leaves, chopped bell pepper and pomegranates.

Adapted from Padhu's Kitchen

Monday, December 10, 2012

Jeera Rice

Basmathi Rice - 1 cup
Jeera/Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp
Ghee - 1 tbspn
Salt - as per taste

Wash the rice thoroughly. Drain and keep it aside for 30 minutes. Heat the ghee and add the jeera. Fry for few seconds. Then add the drained rice and fry for 2 minutes. 
Rice Cooker;
Now transfer the rice to the rice cooker and add 2 cups. Add salt and mix it gently.
Stove Top;
In a small pressure cooker/pressure pan, heat ghee and add the jeera. Fry for few seconds. Now add the drained rice and fry for two minutes. Add 1 and 1/2 cups of water and bring to boil, add salt and pressure cook for 2-3 whistles in medium flame.
Serve hot with Gravies or Subzis.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Aloo Bindhi with Gravy

Okra - 20 Nos
Potatoes - 3 medium size
Onions - 2 medium, sliced
Tomatoes - 4 medium, cut into chunks
Garlic - 4 cloves
Ginger - 1 inch piece
Green Chilies - 2 (add one more for extra spicy)
Red Chili powder - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 1/2 tsp
Amchoor powder (Dry Mango Powder) - 1/4 tsp
Oil for shallow frying
Coriander Leaves - 2 tbspns, chopped
Salt to taste

Bay leaf - 1
Peppercorns - 2
Cloves - 2
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Poppy seeds (khus-khus) - 1/2 tsp
Cinnamon stick - 1 inch, cut into pieces

Clean the okras and pat dry with the help of paper towel or clean cloth. Cut the head and tail of the okras and cut into tiny pieces. Peel and cut the potatoes in the same shape as okras.
Heat sufficient oil in a pan, shallow fry the okras and potatoes, until golden brown.
Drain from oil and place them in the paper towel to absorb excess oil.
Heat 2 tsp of oil in a pan and fry all the masalas one by one. Now add the onions, garlic, garlic,  green chilies and saute till the onion turns translucent. Now add tomatoes and saute till it turns mushy. Switch off the stove and allow them to cool. Transfer the mixture to a blender and blend them to a smooth paste. 
In the same kadai, add a few drops of oil and saute the blended mixture for few minutes. Add all the spice powders, salt and mix well. Cook for about 4-5 minutes on low flame. Finally add the fried  okras and potatoes.
Gently stir and cook for 3-4 more minutes on low heat. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves and serve hot with roti or pulao.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Keerai Pongal

Ponni Rice or Basmati rice - 1 cup
Moong dal - 1/2 cup
Chopped spinach - 1/2 cup
Salt - to taste

To temper;
Ghee - 2 tbspns
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Pepper - 1 tsp
Cashews - 5
Grated ginger - 1 tbspn
Curry Leaves - a few

In a skillet fry the moong dal on medium heat till aroma rises. Wash the moong dal and the rice thoroughly and combine with chopped spinach and salt with 3 1/2 to 4 cups water.
Pressure cook for 4-5 whistles. Once cooked remove them from the cooker and mash it well with a ladle. Keep aside. 
You can also skip the roasting part and proceed cooking.
In a wide pan heat 2 tbspns of ghee, add cumin seeds, crushed pepper, cashews and grated ginger and wait till the cashew turns golden brown. Add curry leaves. Switch off the stove. 
Combine the mashed rice and give a nice stir. Serve hot with Sambar or Chutney.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Hotel Sambar

Thuvar Dal - 1/2 cup, cooked and mashed
Onion - 1/2, chopped lengthwise
Small Onions - 7
Brinjal - 1 small, chopped lengthwise
Drumstik - 4, 1 inch pieces
Green Chili - 1, cut lengthwise
Garlic - 2 cloves, chopped lengthwise
Tomato - 1 medium, chopped
Tamarind Paste - 2 tbspns, mixed with 2 cups water
Coconut flakes - 1 tsp
Jaggery (powdered) - 1/2 tsp
Curry Leaves - few
Coriander Leaves - 1 tbspn
Mustard Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Red Chili -1
Cumin Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Asafoetida - a pinch
Red Chili Powder - 3/4 tsp
Coriander Powder - 1 tsp
Sambar Powder - 2 tbspns
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
Salt - as per taste

Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds. Let it splutter. Now add cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, dry red chili, curry leaves and asafoetida and saute for 2 minutes. Then add chopped onions, sambar onions, green chili and garlic and saute for a while. When the onions turn translucent, add the remaining veggies and saute for 3-4 minutes. Now add the chopped tomatoes, turmeric powder, red chili powder and coriander powder. Saute everything till the tomatoes become tender and juicy.
Now add the tamarind paste mixed with 2 cups of water, salt, jaggery and sambar powder. Adjust the water to your desired consistency. Let this gravy cook till the raw smell of the tamarind goes off. Now add the mashed thuvar dal and let it come to a boil. 
At this stage add ghee and switch off the stove. Garnish with coconut flakes and coriander leaves.
Serve hot with mini idlies, pongal and rice.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Almond Butter

Almonds (raw) - 2 cups
Salt - 1/2 tsp

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Toss the almonds on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 5-10 minutes until nicely toasted (and be careful not to burn them!).
Grind the almonds along with the salt in a food processor or a mixie.
Scrape the sides of the processor for two or three times in the beginning. But once the almonds started to release the oil, they stuck to themselves.
Store the butter in an airtight container.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Paneer Pulao

Basmati Rice - 1 cup, uncooked
Potato - 1 medium, chopped lengthwise
Onion - 1 small, chopped lengthwise
Peas - 1/4 cup, frozen or fresh
Salt - according to taste
Paneer - 1 cup, cubed
Cinnamon - 1 inch piece
Cloves - 2
Bay leaf - 1, small
Elaichi - 1 
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Red chili powder - 3/4 tsp
Ghee or oil - for frying
Lemon juice - 1 tsp
Water - 2 cups

Wash and soak the rice for 15 minutes. Drain the water. Now add a tsp of ghee or oil in a pan and roast the rice for 2 minutes. Keep it aside.
Now add another tsp of oil and fry the paneer cubes till golden brown. Keep the fried paneer soaked in hot water. Soaking paneer in hot water keeps the paneer soft. Now fry the onions and potatoes separately and keep it aside.
Add another tsp of oil and fry the cinnamon, cloves, elaichi and bay leaf for a minute. Then add cumin seeds and peas and fry for another 2 minutes. Then add 2 cups of water, salt and red chili powder. As soon as the water starts to boil add the rice, potatoes and half of the paneer cubes.
For the stove top;
Stir it for a few seconds, reduce the heat to very low and cover it with a lid. Wait till all the water gets absorbed. Switch off the stove.
For the rice cooker;
When the water starts to boil transfer the entire contents to the rice cooker. Wait till the rice gets cooked.

Add lemon juice to the rice and slowly give a stir. Garnish with the fried onions and the remaining paneer cubes.
Goes well with all raitas and dal tadka.

Recipe Courtesy: Mrs Mallika Badrinath

Friday, November 9, 2012

Coconut Burfi


(MAKES 12 – 14 PIECES)
Coconut, - 1 cup grated, heaped
Sugar - 1 cup
Elaichi powder - 2 pinches
Cashews - 5 
Ghee - 1 tsp

Take a pan and fry cashews till golden brown and set aside. Keep a tray ready greased with ghee. Heat coconut and sugar together. Mix well. Continue heating with constant stirring in medium flame. The sugar will melt and form a thick liquid. Continue this until the mixture starts leaving the pan and forms a foamy whitish bubbles while stirring. Color should not change. If you keep stirring even after the consistency reaches, then the sugar will get caramelized and color will start to change. Add cashews, elaichi lastly. Pour immediately to the greased tray and level it with a greased aluminium foil to give it a smooth finish.  Wait for 10 minutes and cut into pieces while it is still warm. If you set the mixture in tray for so long until it cools down, then it will be difficult make pieces.

Recipe Courtesy: Rak's Kitchen

Sending this recipe to "Tried and Tasted - Rak's Kitchen" event hosted by Sowmya of Nivedhanam and Lakshmi of Kitchen Chronicles.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Kara Sev

Gram flour/kadala mavu - 1 cup, heaped
Rice flour - 3/4 cup
Asafoetida powder - 1/4 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/8 tsp
Pepper - 1 tsp, crushed
Jeera /cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Butter - 2 tbspns, softened
Oil - for deep frying
Salt - as needed

Sieve gram flour if it has any lumps. Take both flours in a bowl, butter, crushed pepper,  jeera, salt, turmeric and asafoetida. Mix well. Add enough water to make a stiff dough.  Make as a smooth dough (make sure there is no crack). Take the murukku press (with three holes). 
Fill the press with dough and press in hot oil in large circles. Do not make too many layers. Just two circles. Fry in medium flame on both sides till the bubbles and ‘shhhh’ sounds ceases. Drain in paper towel and break roughly into pieces. Store in air tight container. The pepper flavor incorporates well the next day. 

Recipe Courtesy: Rak's Kitchen

Sending this recipe to "Tried and Tasted - Rak's Kitchen" event hosted by Sowmya of Nivedhanam and Lakshmi of Kitchen Chronicles.