Showing posts with label Dessert. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dessert. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Recipe: Toffee Bananas. An initiative for #SeedTheRiseChallenge by Mahindra Rise.

Some recipes remind you of a certain moment. They take you back in time, and transport you to the exact place, the exact feeling, the exact fragrance. Much like the scene from the movie Ratatouille where the food critic takes one bite of the dish and is instantly transported to his childhood. I have a similar story to share.

When I was a kid, we used to travel by train to and from our native place, Karwar. It was an annual visit for Ganesh Chaturthi, back in the day when all the "modern" things were still not available in villages so we used to carry everything for everyone from Mumbai, and it wasn't possible to take it all on a flight. We used to travel by Nethravati Express as it was one of the only trains that had a pantry. The main reason was the delicious fried Bananas that were sold on the train, fresh out of the pantry, and it was something me and my brother looked forward to every year!

Years passed by, convenience took over everything else and we started taking flights every year. The memories of the fried Bananas got lost somewhere till I was watching an episode of Food Safari on TV and someone cooked Toffee Bananas. It was an instant trip to the train journeys and the happiness. I just knew I had to recreate this.

Call it the perfect opportunity, but #SeedTheRiseChallenge happened just at the right time for me. We are paying homage to the hardworking farmers of India and celebrating with recipes of ingredients that are largely produced on our soil. Bananas had to top the list, and I knew I had to make these! Seed The Rise Campaign is a crowdfunding initiative set up by Mahindra to help improve the lives of Indian farmers who have been betrayed by the bad weather. Working with 5 NGO-led projects across India, the campaign is looking to raise Rs. 2 crores in public donations. What's more - each donation will be matched by Mahindra to double the benefit for the farmers. Check out their website to know more or to donate You can also watch their TVC here: 

Coming back to the recipe, it is super quick, ready in 30 minutes from start to finish, and is so easy that it is almost unfair for something so easy to be this delicious! Here it goes:

Toffee Bananas
Serves 2
Takes 30 minutes
Recipe credit: Darwin from Food Safari


2 Bananas
1/2 Cup Flour
2/3 tsp Baking Powder
A pinch of Salt
1/2 Cup Corn Flour, plus a little extra for dusting.
1/3 Cup Cold Water
Oil for frying
1/2 Cup Sugar
Ice, for ice bath.

Heat a pan for frying, with a level of about an inch of Oil.

Mix the flour, baking powder, salt and corn flour in a bowl. Add cold water and mix the batter by hand, so as to not form lumps. It should be a thick consistency, but also easy to pour.

Chop the Bananas as per preference. I chopped them diagonally into thick slices. Take some corn flour in a plate and dredge the banana slices in it. This helps the batter stick to the otherwise slimy Banana slices.

Once the Oil is heated, coat the Banana slices with the batter and fry till golden on both sides, about 3-4 minutes. Don't crowd the pan with too many slices, as that can lower the oil temperature. 4 slices at once is a good amount! You may need to adjust the consistency of the batter with cold water as you go, it tends to thicken as it sits.

Drain the fried Banana slices on a paper towel. Mean while, heat up the sugar on medium in a non stick pan. Add few drops of water if desired, and wait patiently till it turns into a gorgeous golden caramel.

While this happens, ready a bowl with lots of ice and water and keep ready.

Once the caramel is ready, add few slices of the fried Bananas to it, coat them well and immediately add them to the ice bath. Repeat till all slices are done. The ice water shocks the caramel and turns it into a super crispy exterior.

And that is it! Toffee Bananas are ready. Just imagine biting into these crunchy goodies that are oozing with melt-in-the-mouth Banana goodness inside! I recommend all of you to try it soon! :)

Friday, July 24, 2015

Recipe: Kesar Phirni and Rose Phirni!

I am of the firm belief that food binds religions together. I love that people of all faiths indulge in the food specialty of every religion, not to mention even take part in full fledged celebrations all around the world. I feel honored to have friends who come over to our house during Ganesh Chaturthi and help around the kitchen while making ukadiche modak for the deity's offering, or when all of us go together to a Gurudwara and do seva together. Me and my brother go around our apartment complex every year without fail, with a plate full of faraal (a variety of sweets and savoury snacks including laddu, karanji, chakli, barfi etc.) during Diwali to the doorsteps of all the families regardless of what their religion is.

This year I missed out on visiting Mohammed Ali Road during the holy month of Ramadan. For those of you who don't know, Mohd. Ali Road is THE place to be during this month, with an overdose of food awesomeness along the streets ranging from Keema Pav, Kebabs, Offal masala, Biryanis, Baida Rotis, Ice Creams, Malpuas with luscious Rabdi, Gulab Jamun, Halwa Poori... The list goes on and on! Just because of the excellent offerings, this place has become the go-to destination for every foodie in Mumbai and off late a popular place for curated food walks as well. I must confess, I have never been to Mohd. Ali Road before. But every year, someone or the other brings lots of packed goodies home and at least I get to devour them.

I have been so upset about completely missing out on all the yummy things, especially my favorite dessert - Phirni. Phirni is kind of a rice pudding which originally has its roots in the Middle East. You can find versions of this dish all over the region. Here is a special tidbit: Whenever there is a special occasion at home I ask my mom to make Phirni for dessert and she always, always makes Kheer instead. When I argue with her, she tells me that it is the same thing. But it isn't. Kheer can be served warm or cold but the awesomeness that is Phirni, needs to be served chilled. Not just that, Phirni is made out of coarsely ground rice whereas Kheer can also be made out of whole rice. By now, I am sure you can already tell that I really have missed my dessert.

I went to the market to get milk and thanks to Mother Dairy's price drop by 2 rupees I stocked up on multiple packets of milk. Which is why I could make not one but two kinds of Phirni! I prefer Mother Dairy milk to make my Kheer and Phirni as it definitely yields better results over the skimmed milk variety which is usually consumed in my house. #TooGoodForTwoLess indeed! Mother Dairy has been a trusted name since its establishment in 1974 for all things related to dairy. I, for one, am a sucker for their Mishti Doi among other favourites such as their Dahi, Paneer and Ice Creams! So here's the recipe for Kesar Phirni and the original Rose Phirni! :)

Serves 4
Takes 40 minutes + Chilling time. 

1/2 Cup Basmati Rice
1 Litre Mother Dairy Milk
3/4 Cup Sugar (I use less, you can add more if you like but this works just fine)
6-8 Cardamom pods (Elaichi), powdered (alternatively 1 tsp Elaichi Powder)
12-15 strands of Saffron (Kesar)
4 drops Rose Water
8-10 Blanched Almonds
8-10 Pistachios, slivered.
Aluminium Foil, cut into squares that fit the circumference of the serving bowls. 


Heat the milk in a thick bottomed non stick pan till it comes up to the boil. While the milk is heating up, grind the rice in a spice grinder to a coarse powder, make sure it isn't too fine. 8-10 pulses do the trick for me.

Reserve 2 tbsp milk when it reaches a decently warm temperature. Add the saffron strands in this milk and set aside for later.

Place the Almonds in a microwave safe bowl and cover with water. Microwave for 90 seconds. Let them cool slightly and then peel them. Slice or chop as desired. Set aside for later.

When the milk comes to a rolling boil, reduce the heat to low. Add in the ground rice and sugar. stir constantly so as to avoid any lumps. Note down the time at this point. Keep stirring occasionally. Do not cover your pan.

Give the mixture around 10 minutes, and then add in the Almonds and Cardamom Powder. Give it a good stir. If you are making Kesar Phirni, add in the saffron strands as well. (I divided my milk mixture into two and added Saffron to half of it, since I was making two types of Phirni)

Save some Almonds for garnish and add the rest to the Phirni and continue to cook till the rice is done and the desired consistence is reached. The Phirni should be set in the bowls upon chilling, but it is important to know that Phirni thickens as it cools, so a slightly pourable consistency works best.

For the Classic Rose Phirni, turn off the heat and add in the Rose Water. Give it a good stir. Let the Phirni cool till it reaches room temperature. Transfer the Phirni to bowls and garnish with Pistachios and Almonds. I used Rose petals as well.

Place Aluminium Foil squares on the bowls and press so that the surface of the foil touches the Phirni. We do this because Phirni forms a skin on top if left uncovered, and that is not very desirable. Chill the Phirni bowls thoroughly, and remember, serve them chilled too! :)


Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Recipe: Guilt Free Sugarless 70% Dark Chocolate and Baileys Ice Cream.

I am the Ross Geller of the ice cream world. I am not an ice cream lover because I think it is too cold. Soft serves and froyo on the other hand, I love. Back when we were kids, me and the little brother used to re-enact the sequence from the Jurassic Park movie, where the kids are eating ice cream and a Dinosaur creeps up in their house (we've all been there). We'd mix instant coffee powder in a Vanilla ice cream cup and stir it vigorously till it was of soft serve consistency and then race to who finishes last. Nostalgic. Sigh... How time passes by!

As much as I really-really-really don't like ice cream, I crave for it often when it's that time of the month. Same goes for chocolate- not a huge fan, but I want nothing but chocolate when I'm craving for it. Since I decided to make a sLITE change in my life, I thought why not come up with a guilt free ice cream recipe which would satiate my cravings and not make me get out of the house just to buy myself a cup? David Lebovitz had this recipe up on his site, and I tailor made it to fit into the sLITE lifestyle. I  also added a sprinkle of Tata salt lite to the recipe, to bring out the bittersweet taste. It literally takes 5 minutes to make the faux custard, and no churning at all! This may not be your friendly neighbourhood overtly sweet ice cream but it was still so good, I just had to share it with you guys!

A huge shoutout to the amazing folks over at Tata Salt Lite who are taking a great initiative with promoting the #slite lifestyle. You can look their pages up on Twitter and Facebook, or dial their toll free number to know more.

On to the nomness!

Guilt Free Sugarless 70% Dark Chocolate and Baileys Ice Cream.
Serves 2
Takes 5 minutes (+4 hours of freezing)
Adapted from David Lebovitz's blog.


100 gm 70% Dark Chocolate (You can use any that you like)
1 cup milk (you can also use non fat or skimmed milk)
1 medium sized over-ripe frozen Banana
2 tbsp Cocoa Powder
90 ml Baileys (optional)
A dash of Vodka/Rum
A pinch of Tata Salt Lite


Melt the Chocolate and Cocoa into warm milk till uniform. You can do this over a pan on low heat, or in the microwave at 30 second bursts.
Blend together with all other ingredients till smooth.
Transfer to an air tight container and freeze for 4 hours or until set.
Scoop it out and sprinkle with Tata Salt Lite before serving.

Note: we need to add alcohol to the recipe so that there is no crystallisation. You can omit the alcohol altogether, but know that the ice cream will be slightly hard in texture (like a Kulfi).

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Recipe: Gluten Free Sugarless Muffins!

Ever since I've made this switch to leading a fit lifestyle, I spend a little time every day researching recipes online on how to use ingredients more effectively. Just while browsing, the other day, I found this recipe and I decided to give it a try. It tastes quite amazing, and makes for a great pre or post workout snack. These little babies are super light yet keep you full for a considerable amount of time. Each muffin is a mere 95 calories, and you can make it better by smearing a spoonful of Nutella over it if you really feel like taking it to the next level.

I have to admit, these are not the best looking, best textured muffins you may have had, but they are a SLITE change that go a long, long way! These do not keep very well, due to the Bananas. But for all you know, they're gonna be over in no time anyway!

Gluten Free Sugarless Muffins
Makes 12
Takes 1 hour

Inspired by Ambitious Kitchen


1.5 cup Gluten Free Oat Flour ( just blitz your gluten free oats in the blender until fine)
1 tbsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
1/4 tsp Tata Salt Lite
1 scoop Zero carb Whey powder (optional)
1 tsp Cinnamon Powder
1 tsp All Spice Powder
A handful of Walnuts, chopped. (Optional)
2 very ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1/4 cup Honey
1/4 cup Date syrup (can be substituted with honey)
2 Egg Whites
1 tsp Vanilla


Preheat the oven to 200C/400F

Mix the Oat Flour, Baking Powder, Baking Soda, Cinnamon, All Spice, Whey, Tata Salt Lite and Walnuts in a mixing bowl.

Mix the Bananas, Greek Yogurt, Honey, Date Syrup, Egg Whites and Vanilla. I used a blender for this.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix to incorporate. Spoon into 12 Muffin Moulds. Bake for 10-11 minutes!

Enjoy the guilt free indulgence!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Review: The pursuit of 'Happi'ness. Me So Happi, Khar, Mumbai.

I am back, after another hiatus, to apologize about my absence. This time is a little different, 'coz I come bearing good news, especially for the forever hungry people in Mumbai. As I am trying to desperately find balance between my love for food, and leading a healthy and fit lifestyle, I have recently had the opportunity to try some real fun places in our city and as a "foodie" I feel very excited about the change in the food scene, with people open to trying stuff from around the world, stepping out of their dal-chawal-aloo-tikki-chaat-masala zones and opening up to subtler flavours, while taking their palates through a culinary roller coaster.

I could go on about what's hot and what's not, but its for you to decide. What I can tell you is that when I go to a restaurant, review or otherwise, I look for good food (obviously), great service, smiling faces, loud chatter, and a great ambiance. Basically, I look for a good vibe. A vibe that makes me happy- which is what Me So Happi did, it made me happy.

Me So Happi is an all day diner located right next to the Guess showroom on the Linking Road, Khar. You will easily spot the happy writing on their sign board. Walk in and you will be transported to an upbeat ambiance, with large windows, plenty of natural light, and little nothings that meant something to us as kids such as a jar full of Kismi Bar chocolates. I, for one, am not a huge fan of the high chair seating but surprisingly the chairs were very comfortable. What looked like a quaint little place was actually enormous inside, with an outdoor seating area and décor with lots of personality. If you are lucky enough you will spot the owner, Aarathi Arambhan, and the Chef Anirudh taking rounds and interacting with customers and getting feedback all along. Here is what we tried:

Smoothies: We tried the California Smoothie and the Mr.P Nutt Oats Smoothie. It was a surprise to us that this place actually served up smoothies and we were so glad we ordered these! The P Nutt Oats Smoothie is a must try.

Salads: We tried the Caesar Salad which was spot on, the Chicken and Egg Salad was nice too, but I am more of a Caesar Salad girl :)

The Quinoa and Beet salad was excellent and a refreshing change from the normal leafy stuff!

Appetizers: We also tried the Prawns on Fire, which were actually perfectly balanced and fried to crispy awesomeness. I would not say the same about the Baked Potato Skins. Safe to avoid them.

Meat lovers, do yourselves a favour and try the Big Bad Meanie Lamb Burger. I have attached the picture and it needs to explanation. It was juicy and yummy!

Another succulent meaty dish is the Meat On Top, with an amazing gravy topping a bed of mashed potatoes. You will love it, I am sure!

We thought of trying the Cheesecake for dessert but it was out of stock (yes it is that good) so we tried the Triple Chocolate Mousse Cake, which was topped with none other than Magic Pop! This one is an absolute must try!

The Pecan Nut Pie was nice as well, just thought it was a tad eggy for my liking. Will stick to the Mousse Cake or the Cheesecake!

In the end, Me So Happi made We So Happi! :)

P.S. They have recently started a Sunday Breakfast menu that opens at 7 AM and goes on till 11 AM. Cannot wait to try it!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Review: Asparagus Festival at Sofitel, Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai.

Image Courtesy: Google Images (
Every year, on the 1st of January, I write a check list. It consists of 10 items. I evaluate myself on the basis of the same, on the 1st of January next year, which is when I make a new check list. One item that has been on my check list for the past 3 years is wanting to learn a new language and finally this year I took it off my list, giving up hope that I will ever get around to learn a new language. In my universe, things have a funny way of finding me when I give up on them, and just yesterday I attended my first class for learning conversational French language. I am so excited! The class was fun and interactive, and I got to learn so many new things! I am lucky that I got the company of my two beautiful friends, Anita and Ramya. We have been spamming each other's messages with Bonjour/Bonsoir and counting numbers from Zéro to Trente!

I could not have asked for a better day to visit the Sofitel chain of hotels, and be greeted with 'Bonsoir, mademoiselle' every place I went. I have always been a fan of their modern decor, and their brand new addition of a mini walk way with potted herbs is a fragrant and beautiful idea, which will grow into a quaint al fresco area for Sunday brunches, what with freshly picked herbs going into omelets! Quelle magnifique!

The Herb Garden
 We arrived early for our dinner reservations, so we could take our time and try out as much as we can of their new Asparagus festival menu, which is said to be an Asparagus celebration. I am a huge fan of this spring vegetable, and I love the beautiful stems with poached Lobsters to scrambled Eggs to being blanched and served au naturel, as a salad with some salt, pepper and a dash of Olive oil. The Asparagus used for the Sofitel festival is imported from Peru and costs upto an exorbitant Rs. 2,000 per kg, but I fail to understand why is the local produce not celebrated more. I guess the imported goods is why the menu looks quite expensive too.

The Menu

A good meal was started with a great Italian Wine, the 2011 Allegrini Corte Giara Soave. My rookie wine drinking date for the night also loved the bright aromatic flavours, as did I. Lovely recommendation from the restaurant manager, Sagar.

The Wine!
  I do believe that Asparagus is highly underrated, and a true celebration for me would be inculcating it into Indian dishes too. On that note, I must try out an Asparagus Korma. Anyway, on to the meal!

Green and White Asparagus Soup

We started with an Asparagus soup that was served with pieces of chopped Asparagus and the croutons were replaced by little bits of Goat's Cheese deep fried to crispy perfection. I loved that the soup was the perfect beginning to our meal, and the White Asparagus soup was unbelievably creamy yet light at the same time. The portion size was just the right amount to set the tone for the meal to come.

Asparagus and Prawn Salad

Next was the Asparagus and Prawn Salad. Tender Asparagus stems were served along side plump prawns tossed in a tartar-like sauce, and served with a Red Pepper Puree and some Alfalfa sprouts. Simple and clean flavors that all came together, albeit I did feel that the portion size could have been larger.

Poached Quail Eggs with Asparagus, Fennel and Pancetta.

What followed was the dish that I would pay the price for. Quail Eggs gently poached to perfection, served over a row of White Asparagus, served with Rocket leaves and Fennel shavings and a mound of Pancetta, all finished with a drizzle of Honey. I know you can imagine it. I know you can taste it. This dish was pure genius. Highly recommended!

Sous-vide Chicken with Asparagus and Mashed Potato Foie Gras Puree.

The main course was a bit of a disappointment. We started with a Chicken Sous-vide that was finished in a frying pan with thyme, and served over a medley of Asparagus and a Pomme et Foie Gras Purée. Please don't blame my judgment on my loyalty towards Master Chef Australia, but I do not get why a sous-vide chicken had to be finished in a frying pan. The meat was overcooked. The purpose of a sous-vide is to cook the chicken to tender perfection so that your knife would glide along the meat, but I did have to work on the Chicken Breast, quite a bit. On the contrary, the Asparagus medley and the Pomme et Foie Gras Purée was so fantastic, that the plate went back with nothing but the two Chicken Breast pieces... Okay, one and a half.

Pan Seared Salmon with Asparagus and Red Wine Butter.

We went on to trying the Pan Seared Salmon which was served over... you guessed it right, a row of Asparagus, and Red Wine Butter. I honestly did not care for this dish. I would give this a miss.

Gnocchi with Asparagus, Cherry Tomatoes and Burnt Sage Butter.

I requested the chef to send me a portion of Gnocchi with Asparagus, Cherry Tomatoes and a burnt Sage butter sauce. Now, I am not a Gnocchi connoisseur but I do know that something is horribly wrong if the Gnochhi bits are sticking to the roof of my mouth, let alone it melting completely at the first bite. It was too doughy, and I did not care for anything on the plate except the blanched Cherry Tomatoes.

Asparagus Panna Cotta with Saffron Ice Cream.
Dessert was an Asparagus Panna Cotta served with a Saffron Ice Cream and a Chocolate cookie dust. The Saffron Ice Cream was pure genius, with just the right amount of sweetness and a great satiny texture. It was also visually appealing with the sensual black specks of Vanilla laced all through it. I wish I could say the same about the Asparagus Panna Cotta. It was overtly gelatinous. Next to the Saffron Ice Cream, it tasted like nothing. If you have to chew a Panna Cotta, you know there is something not so right about it. Requesting their team to fix this as soon as possible.

I wish the Sofitel team could have been more innovative about Asparagus than just placing rows of it on to the plate. To celebrate an ingredient in all its glory is to provide your diners with a unique experience (especially at that price) right from roasting to blanching to trying to incorporate it into some other ingredient. I have watched the Chef movie, and I do sympathize with the Chefs if their hands are tied thanks to the management, but I just wanna say that diners, at least from Mumbai, are always up to trying something new, with a WOW factor. This is strictly my opinion.

I congratulate the team at Sofitel who did manage to come up with a great spread nonetheless, and hope to see better execution! Thank you so much for the invitation, I am truly honored! I shall forever remain a fan of your lunch buffet as well as the Sunday brunch!

The Asparagus Festival is on till August 10, 2014.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Food Review: Smoke House Deli, Bandra Kurla Complex.

Picture Courtesy : Smoke House Deli

Pharrell William's Happy is doing the rounds almost everywhere on the internet. Its great, everyone is uploading their version of the Happy Song on youtube, so much so that someone has actually uploaded a parody video called 'Crappy'. Crappy makes them Happy. Well, whatever floats their boat!

Happiness for me is simple things. Food, Love, and Laughter. Smoke House Deli has consistently managed to maintain the number 1 spot in all 3 departments for me. It also happens to be my most visited place for a Date night, other than Big Chill in New Delhi, just for the perfect setting and feel-good ambiance along with lip smacking food.

Picture Courtesy: Smoke House Deli

Smoke House Deli has opened their brand new outlet at Bandra Kurla Complex, which happens to cater to mostly clientele who want to grab a quick lunch during their break from office, or who want to chill with a drink after work. Time is the essence to this outlet, in my opinion.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

5 Things : A new series! Sofitel, Mad Over Donuts, Hard Rock Cafe, Faasos and a Cheese Overload!

I've been meaning to start this for a while now.

5 things that make me smile : Mostly about Food. But you know me, I'll put up anything!

So here it goes!

1. Lunch Buffet at Sofitel, Bandra Kurla Complex:

Tried out the brunch at Pondicherry Cafe recently, and I must say they have a pretty awesome spread! While they also have a live Pizza, Pasta and Noodle table, there are innumerable amounts of options and one could spend a leisurely time while enjoying sumptuous food! Special mention for the amazing Sushi counter and the Cold Cut and Fish station!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Happy 100th to me! And a Cupcake Recipe for you xx

I wish I could celebrate a blogaversary. I wish I was able to say that one fine day I had an epiphany that I must spread my knowledge about food and baking to the world. My story is so different, I started a blog by accident, and I can never have enough knowledge about baking or food. Just yesterday I met a gentleman who told me that food blogging has come down to nothing but a status symbol, with far too many people throwing around their weight gorging on free food and drinks, call everything delicious, lest they would have to explain their own research and knowledge about a certain cuisine or food item.

We have all had moments of revelation, the first time tasting a cuisine that does not revolve around Masala and Spices, and cook everything in a similar fashion. We all have had those moments when we opened ourselves to newer horizons and decided to break out of the ordinary. Why do I need to add a sprinkle of chaat masala or a squeeze of lemon over every thing I eat that is not Indian? Why can't I add Cheese to a Rabri? Or can I? I, for one, have learned a lot about respecting ingredients. I have learned a lot about experimenting with food and also learned the hard way that there is a thin line between creating something that makes the world go 'wow' and on the other hand, makes them feel like this is not their cuisine anymore. You can mix it up, but do respect the actual identity of the dish or cuisine.

For all of you who have been following my writings all through, I am pretty sure you know me a little bit by now, and how it is like to be with me. I am moody, fussy, I talk less, I think a lot, and I am basically in my own world at most times. I do love to eat. I respect and understand that everyone has a separate outlook towards food and I am only glad that you can connect with mine. I never thought I would actually get to the point that I will have to write a 100th post, but now that I am here, I just have to share something special with you guys. So here is a Cupcake recipe I dearly love.

And I will just call this my Blogaversary :)

Chocolate and Salted Caramel Cupcakes.
Makes 12-18 depending on the size.
Source : Sweetapolita and Self.


1 Cup all-purpose flour
1 Cup granulated sugar
50 g Cocoa Powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch salt
2 eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
1/2 cup strong, hot or cold black coffee or espresso
1/2 cup buttermilk, room temperature
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

For the Frosting:

1 Cup Heavy Cream, Chilled.
1 tsp Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla Extract

For the Salted Caramel Sauce:

100 gm or 1/2 Cup Granulated Sugar
4 tbsp Butter
1/4 Cup Single Cream


Preheat oven to 170C/350F

Mix all dry ingredients: Flour, Sugar, Cocoa, Baking Soda, Baking Powder, Salt.

Mix all wet ingredients in another bowl: 2 Eggs slightly beaten, Coffee, Buttermilk, Oil and Vanilla.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well.

Bake the Cupcakes for 13 minutes per batch and more or less depending on done-ness.

For the Frosting:

Whisk the Chilled Cream in an ice bath, add the Sugar and Vanilla after 30 seconds of whisking, and whisk to form stiff peaks. Fill it up in an icing bag.

For the Sauce:

Heat up a small dry pan with Sugar on medium heat, until its all melted and turns into an Amber color. Take if off the heat and then add Butter. Whisk it till incorporated, and add in the cream. The mixture will splatter, so beware (or wear gloves). Put it back on the heat while it bubbles and stir till all lumps are melted away :)

That's me making some Caramel Goodness!

If you want to reduce the sauce and make it thicker, keep heating! Else, remove it and drizzle over anything and everything! Here I've drizzled it over the frosted Cupcakes (and also cored a hole and filled them up inside before frosting) but I love it over ice cream, fruit, coffee, or even by itself!

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Service Review: Goodies from Icing on Top, Kemps Corner, Mumbai.

One of the many perks of being a food blogger is that every now and then you get to try new stuff. Being a Guinea Pig is not too bad a thing when it involves yummy baked things! Here is the review for Icing On Top, run by Ayushi Shah in Kemps Corner, South Mumbai. I was sent a cute little bag with samplers of various products, all eggless.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Food Review: Tripping on Guilt at Guilt Trip, Bandra, Mumbai

If you have been a regular reader of mine you would know that I do not post a lot of sweet recipes. I really cannot point out the reason why, especially when baking is my forte. Somehow I cannot get myself to click pictures in the middle of all that baking, but maybe some day I will muster up the courage to do so. Taking up a review of a sweet treat shop was the first step for me to do all things sweet, and words had been floating around about how good their desserts were. The beautiful entrance just made me look forward to the whole experience all the more!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

No Oil/Butter Fijian Honey Cake.

I cannot "diet" to save my life. Crash dieting and starvation is not my way to fitness nor have I ever been able to stick to it, and no one should. In the past year I have learned to accept myself for what I am, and work around it to make myself better. If there was one thing that I had to state which was a bad habit of mine with regards to eating healthy, I would definitely say that it is when I absolutely need

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Shahi Tukda with Mascarpone Rabdi.

Why stick to the ordinary when it comes to food? The world is your oyster when it comes to experimentation with food. There are no rules that one must follow except the ones that keep the sanctity of the dish intact, if not better it, and the real art lies in getting the flavor combination spot on.

This was a crazy idea of mine which I used for a cooking workshop that I hosted with Amrita Rana from Life Ki Recipe called Glam Food. I have made this recipe numerous times since then and it has only caused people to ask me for the recipe. Since I am done with workshops for now, I can blog the recipe :) Here it goes!

Shahi Tukda with Mascarpone Rabdi
Serves 4


4 slices of Bread
1 Cup Ghee
1 Cup Sugar
1 Cup Water
180 gm/6 oz Mascarpone Cheese
Few strands of Saffron
¼ Cup Warm Milk
Icing Sugar to taste
2 drops + 2 drops Rose Water
¼ Cup Slivered Nuts
Silver Leaf (Optional)
Rose Petals (Optional)
Salt to taste


Trim the ends off the bread and cut into desired shape (baton, triangle, circle)
Fry them in Ghee on a Medium flame until golden brown and crisp on both sides. Set aside.
Prepare Sugar syrup by adding Sugar and Water in a saucepan and letting it melt together till dissolved. Do not stir until sugar is almost dissolved. Add  drops of Rose Water for flavor and let it cool.
Dip the Bread slices for 5 minutes in the Sugar syrup, turning them once in the middle, and then transfer them to a dish.
Let half of the Saffron steep in warm Milk.
To put together the Mascarpone rabdi, beat together the Mascarpone, Salt, Milk and Icing Sugar. Add in the Rose Water, and half of the slivered nuts. We’re looking for a slightly tangy rabdi to complement the sweetness of the Sugar syrup soaked bread.
Garnish with the remaining nuts, Saffron strands and rose petals.
Serve as desired.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

I am a Pavlover. You will be one too, after you try this Pavlova.

Here is why everyone who bakes should invest in an electric whisk. People like me think we can handle working our whisks like a mean machine and whip up Egg Whites and Whipped Cream. We come across recipes that are so simple and take them up, and then make a complete fool of ourselves over and over again. From hand whisking egg whites for an hour to whipping this batch of whipped cream with a large whisk for about 90 minutes, I can say that I have pretty strong forearms. Have a look at the video:

The first thing I wanted to do when I bought an electric whisk

Friday, September 14, 2012

Food Review: Grain and Bagel, Malad, Mumbai

I am emotionally attached to some food items. No, wait. I am emotionally attached to every single food item that I have had that was so good that it remained etched in my memory. Needless to say there are also instances that accompany such food memories, for example a joke that was shared at that time or the memory of being really hungry and running to the store while completely ignoring other important things like phone calls from people or even the urge to pee. I will pretend I did not just say that.

I have already blogged about the craving for Boston Cream Doughnuts and that is how the Bostom Cream Cupcakes happened. The only other thing I miss so much are Bagels, and although I have baked them at home, I admit that it is a long and tedious process and that actually makes me not wanna have them. Until I reviewed Grain and Bagel.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

A Cheesy Affair #1 : Homemade Mascarpone Cheese & Tiramisu in a pinch.

It hurts my heart when I have to pay a bomb for a small block of Cheese more than double the price of what I used to buy when I stayed overseas. I managed to stay off all these cheeses for few months coz it all got over too soon for the amount which I ended up spending on them. But I am a Taurean to the core, lazy but determined, for I would not actually walk down to the market to buy some stuff and end up making them at home instead. I love myself for that.

It started with Cake, moved on to Breads, then to Mayonnaise and now to Cheese. Sure, some stuff we absolutely need to buy from the stores but cheeses like Cream Cheese, Ricotta and Mascarpone can totally be made at home especially when they are going to be mixed into some dish such as Pasta or Cheesecakes. The feeling of accomplishment that comes with making your own cheese at home is absolutely complimentary.

For my 50th post I wanted to do a Trio of Cheeses that we could make in the comfort of our homes, but I delayed one of my cheeses for far too long and had to go ahead and post the awesome Ramen. But this is even better, I am going to do 3 individual posts with cheese making processes and one recipe for each of them. Hope you guys like it!

Homemade Mascarpone Cheese:
Recipe source : Ria's Collection
Makes about 12 oz


400 ml Fresh Cream (I used 2 packs of Amul Fresh Cream 25%)
1 tbsp Lemon Juice


(I made this in the night so pictures are crazy)

Heat up an inch of water in a saucepan till it's up to the boil. Reduce heat to simmer.

Empty the cream packs into another pan to place over the pan with simmering water.

Place the second pan on top of the one with simmering water, it should fit snugly, and let it heat for 15 minutes till you see small bubbles and some steam rising from it.

Squeeze in/ Add in the lemon juice.

Stir occasionally, you will see that the cream will start to thicken and not split like normal dairy products do when Lemon Juice is added to them. Heat it till it coats the back of a spoon and when you run a finger over it, the mark remains.

Get a small sieve lined with 4 layers of cheesecloth or tea towel whichever you prefer. Place another bowl to collect the whey from the cream under it.

Pour the Cream mixture over the cheesecloth.

Fold the cheesecloth over and let this sit in the refrigerator for at least 10 hours to a maximum of 24 hours. I let mine sit for 24 hours and got this.

The most luscious and smooth mound of Mascarpone that was ready to be used! You can store it in the refrigerator in a covered container for up to a week. I made a Tiramisu in a pinch on the next day with mine! :)

Here is the recipe:

Tiramisu (in a pinch).
Serves 4
Recipe Source : Self.


12 oz Mascarpone Cheese
1/2 Cup Icing Sugar
1 cup Whipped Cream
2 packs Sliced Cake (I used Butter Flavor)
2 tbsp Coffee Powder
A shot of Whiskey/Marsala
1 cup Water
2 tbsp Sugar
Chocolate Shavings (Optional)


Heat up 1 cup Water + 2 tbsp Sugar + Coffee Powder till nicely boiled and let it cool down to room temperature. Add a shot of Whiskey/Marsala to it.

Get the cake slices ready.

Whip Mascarpone + Icing sugar together, and add in Whipped Cream. Fold to incorporate.

I served my Tiramisu in a Glass. But you can easily serve it up home style too :)

Dip the cake slices in the coffee and whiskey mixture and layer them at the bottom. Spoon over some Mascarpone Mixture. Repeat with Cake Slices. The top layer should be Mascarpone.

Dust with Cocoa Powder on top and sprinkle Chocolate Shavings if using. Let this chill for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator. I got real rave reviews for this one!

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