Friday, December 27, 2013

Eggless Tutti Frutti Cake

All purpose flour - 1 1/2 cups + 2 tsps to coat the tin and tutti frutti
Sugar - 1 cup, powdered
Curd - 1 cup, beaten at room temperature
Tutti frutti - 1/2 cup
Oil - 1/2 cup (Canola or Sunflower)
Baking Powder - 1 1/4 tsp
Baking Soda - 1/2 tsp
Salt - a pinch
Vanilla Essence - 2 tsps
Milk - 1 tsp, to brush the cake

Inspired from here
Grease an 8" round pan or the 4"x7" loaf tin with oil. Add a tsp of flour and shake it well so that it coats all the sides and bottom of the tin. Alternatively you can line it with baking paper and make sure you cut it into right size before lining it in the pan.
Preheat the oven at 200 deg C(400 deg F) for 10-12 mins.
In a small bowl take tutti frutti and add 1 tsp of flour and mix well to prevent tutti frutti settling down at the bottom.
Sieve all purpose flour a couple of times to ensure that there are no lumps in it. Add salt.
In a bowl beat curd until smooth. Add powdered sugar to it and beat again for 2-3 mins.
Add baking powder and baking soda to the curd mixture and mix well and leave it aside for 2-3 mins. The curd mixture will become frothy and increase in volume and you can see some bubbles forming in it. Now add the vanilla essence and oil to the curd mixture and mix it nicely and gently and make sure that the air in the mixture is not lost.
Add the flour in two batches and gently fold the flour into the mixture until you get smooth dropping consistency. Do not stir vigorously as it will loose air in the mixture and will not fluff up. Hence do it gentle.
Add the tutti frutti to the cake batter and fold it nicely. Pour this batter into the prepared tin and keep it ready.
Reduce the oven temperature to 180 deg C(350 deg F) and place the tin in the preheated oven and bake it at 180 deg C for 35-40 mins. The baking time varies from oven to oven, hence keep an eye over it after 30 mins.
You can insert a toothpick in the center of the cake to check whether it is done or not. If the toothpick comes out clean with few cake crumbs then your cake is ready. If the toothpick has some batter stuck to it keep the tin back in the oven and bake for some more time.
Brush the top of the cake with milk and put it back in the oven and bake for 2 mins. This gives a shiny look on top of the cake. However this step is optional. 
Remove the tin from the oven and let it sit for 5 mins. Run a sharp knife around the edges of the cake and gently turn it upside down onto a wire rack and let it cool completely, approx 2 hrs. Once it is completely cooled, slice the cake into thick slices using a serrated knife.
Serve it with tea/coffee or eat as it is as a snack.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Spring Onion Chutney

Spring Onion - 1 bunch(4-5 stalks)
Ginger - 1" piece
Green Chili - 3, adjust according to taste
Cilantro - 5-6 sprigs
Coconut - 2 tsps(shredded)
Chana Dal - 1 1/2 tsp
Dalia/Pottu Kadalai - 1 1/2 tsp
Oil - 1 tsp
Salt to taste

To temper;
Oil - 1/2 tsp
Mustard Seeds - 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves few
Chana/Urad dal - 1/4 tsp each

Wash and roughly chop spring onions, both white and greens. Keep aside.
Heat oil in a pan, add chana and dalia roast till light golden color. Then add ginger, green chili and saute lightly followed by spring onions and saute for 1-2 minutes. Then add cilantro and saute it. Add shredded coconut mix well and turn off the stove.
Cool down completely and then grind it to a smooth paste using little water.
After that transfer the ground chutney to bowl, heat oil in a tempering pan and add tempering ingredients one by one and fry lightly and add it to the chutney.Mix well.
Chutney is now ready to serve.

Inspired from here

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Simple Vanilla Cake with Butter Cream Frosting

Inspired from here
Yields 2 - 9 inch Round Cake Pans

2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 cup milk
3/4 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
2-1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350° F. Line two 9-inch round cake pans or one 9x13-inch rectangular baking pan with parchment paper. Grease the paper and the sides of the pan well.

In a large mixing bowl, with an electric mixer, beat sugar and eggs together until slightly thickened, about 1 minute. Add flour, milk, oil, baking powder, and vanilla and beat for another minute, just until the batter is smooth and creamy. Don't overbeat. Pour batter into the prepared baking pan(s).

Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes or until the tops are golden and a toothpick poked into the center of the layer comes out clean. (A single rectangular pan will take longer to bake than two round ones.) Loosen the sides of the cake from the pan with a thin knife, then turn out onto a rack and peel off the paper. Let cool completely before covering with frosting, if desired.

Inspired from Food Network
Yields 2 cups
3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup butter at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 to 2 tablespoons whipping cream or whole milk
Few Drops of Food Color

In a standing mixer fitted with a whisk, mix together sugar and butter. Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes.

Add vanilla and cream or milk, few drops of food color and continue to beat on medium speed for 1 minute more, adding more cream if needed for spreading consistency.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Aloo Bonda/Urulaikizhangu Bonda

Yields 8 bondas
Inspired from Rak's Kitchen
Potato - 3, medium
Onion - 1/2 cup, chopped finely
Green chili - 2, finely chopped
Ginger - 1 tsp, finely chopped(optional)
Turmeric - 1/8 tsp
Salt - as per taste
Oil - for deep frying

For tempering;
Oil - 2 tsps
Mustard - 3/4 tsp
Urad dal - 1 tsp
Curry leaves - 5, finely chopped

For the batter;
Besan flour - 1/2 cup
Rice flour - 1/4 cup
Ghee - 1 tsp
Black Pepper Powder* - 1/2 tsp
Asafoetida - a pinch
Turmeric - a pinch
Baking Soda - a pinch
Salt - as per taste 
*You can also add chili powder

Cook the potatoes well and peel off the skin and mash it well. Keep aside. 
In a pan, season with mustard seeds. As soon as the mustard seeds crackle add urad dal. Fry till golden brown. Now add curry leaves, finely chopped ginger, green chili and onion. Fry till the onions turns translucent. Add turmeric and salt. Add cooked, mashed potatoes and mix well so that the turmeric blends evenly. Stir for a couple of  minutes and drizzle a tsp of oil. Cool down completely. Make equal sized balls and set aside.
For the batter, mix the flours, ghee, black pepper powder, asafoetida, turmeric, baking soda, salt with little water to make a batter, it should be thick enough to coat the potato balls.
Heat oil in a kadai and deep fry the potato balls dipped to coat it well in the besan batter mix. Turn over in a minute to cook evenly on both sides. Cook in medium flame till golden brown and drain it on a kitchen tissue. Serve it with chutney.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Mexican Burrito Bowl

Serves 2
Basmathi Rice - 1 cup
Water - 2 cups
Lemon Juice - 2 tbspns
Cilantro - 2 tbspns, chopped finely
Salt to taste

Wash and soak the rice in water for 30 minutes. Drain the water and cook the rice by adding water and salt. 
Once the rice is cooked add the lemon juice and the chopped cilantro.

Yields - 1 cup
Tomatoes - 3 big
Jalapeno -1
Garlic - 2 cloves with skins 
Red Onion - 1/4 cup, chopped finely
Olive Oil - for brushing
Cilantro - 1 tbspn, finely chopped
Lemon Juice - 1 tbspn
Salt and Pepper - to taste

Cut the tomatoes and jalapeno in half. Apply olive oil all over the tomatoes, jalapenos and garlic. Broil the vegetables till you observe black spots all over the vegetables(either broil them over the stove top or broil in the oven). Place the vegetables in a bowl and cover them. Let them cool for few minutes.
Now peel the skin off the tomatoes. Scrape out the seeds and membranes (or leave them if you want the salsa extra spicy)!  Peel the garlic, and transfer it to a food processor, along with the jalapenos.  Pulse until they are finely chopped, then add the tomatoes (with their juice), and pulse a few more times to make the salsa as smooth or as coarse as you want. Pour the mixture into a medium bowl, and add the onion, cilantro, and lime juice.  Stir to combine, and add salt and pepper to taste.  Cover and refrigerate.

Green Bell Pepper - 1 small, chopped lengthwise
Onions - 1 small, chopped lengthwise
Olive Oil - 2 tbspns
Paprika - 1/2 tsp
Salt and Pepper - to taste

Heat a skillet and add the olive oil. Add the onions and peppers and saute them over high heat. Saute till the veggies starts turning black. Add the paprika, salt and pepper. Switch off the stove.

Serves 2
Cilantro Rice - 3 cups
Roasted Tomato Salsa - 1 cup
Corn Salsa - 1 cup
Baked Black Beans - 1/2 cup
Sauteed Peppers - 1 cup
Guacamole - 1 cup
Lettuce - a few
Sour Cream - 1/2 cup

Take a bowl and place the cilantro rice. Then add corn salsa, black beans, roasted tomato salsa, sauteed peppers, guacamole, sour cream and garnish with lettuce.