Saturday, 7 September 2013

Eggless Carrot Cake



Eggless Carrot Cake 

I have been making Carrot Cake since a long time but somehow never tried making the eggless version. This was the first time I made this .It was quite easy to make. The results were pretty good...Made some quick and yummy frosting with butter & cheese spread...!! The pictures are not so good as they are mobile pics  taken at night.

Ingredients

Flour 3/4 cup
Grated carrots 1/2 cup
Condensed milk 1/2 cup 
Baking Powder 1/2 tsp
Baking Soda 1/2 tsp
Soft Butter 1/4 cup
Vanilla Essence 1 tsp
Walnuts & Raisins (optional)


Method


Soft Pretzels






Soft Pretzels 
(Launghenbrezel)

When I first saw the challenge for We Knead to Bake of this month by Aparna, I was sure that they are very difficult to make.. so I kept on sort of delaying them, but since I had not done last month's bread also and everybody's pretzels were looking so delicious and yummy I thought of tring them myself. Making the doiugh in a food processor is very easy (This I have learnt from Aparna). Keep the dough for rising ...shape them....dip them in soda bath...and bake them.....AND they R Ready..!!! Soft, Easy and delicious pretzels....!!

Ingredients 

2 1/2 tsp dried active yeast
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 cup warm milk
3 cups + 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt

(For Soda Bath)
6 cups water
2 tbsp baking soda

1 tsp cornmeal or semolina

2 tbsp milk
2 tbsp white sesame seeds
1 tbsp chille flakes

Method

1. Take the yeast and sugar in a bowl and mix them with warm milk and allow that to stand for about 5 minutes.

2. Take the flour, salt and the yeast mixture in a food processor and make the dough by adding milk to it.

3. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic.

4.Form the dough into a ball and place in a large oiled bowl, turning to coat the dough with oil. Cover and allow the dough to rise for about 40 minutes or until doubled in size.

5.Deflate the dough, cover and let it rest 5 minutes. Divide dough into 12 equal portions.

6.Roll each portion into an 18-inch-long rope with tapered ends. Cross one end of rope over the other to form a circle, leaving about 4 inches at end of each rope. Twist the rope at the base of the circle. Fold the ends over the circle and into a traditional pretzel shape, pinching gently to seal. Place pretzels on a lightly greased baking sheet. Cover and let rise 10 minutes (pretzels will rise only slightly).




7. Put the 6 cups of water and baking soda in a non-aluminium pan and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer. Gently lower a pretzel into the simmering water. Cook on each side for about 15 seconds. The pretzel will swell/ puff up a bit. Remove from the water with a slotted spoon and place on a greased wire rack. This will prevent the pretzel from sticking to the rack. Repeat with the remaining pretzels.

8.Place the pretzels on a baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal or semolina. Brush with milk and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake at 220C (425F) for 12 minutes or until pretzels are deep golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

9. Serve warm with a dip of your choice or just plain. They’re best eaten fresh, and on the same day. This recipe makes 12 Pretzels.




Monday, 15 July 2013

Eggless Baked Doughnuts






 We Knead to Bake #6

Baked Doughnuts..??????  This sounded interesting when I saw June's Month Challennge for We Knead to Bake hosted by Aparna of My Diverse Kitchen ...Though I had made doughnuts before but they were fried...& using eggs... I had to try these Baked Doughnuts....Though Last Month I was very busy with personal involvements, I tried these and they came out FANTASTIC......They were liked so much so that My son has already told his friends that his Mom would be making doughnuts for the whole class for his B'Day tom..and have been asking their favourite flavour.......!!

Eggless Baked Doughnuts


Ingredients:

1/4 cup castor sugar
1 cup warm milk 
3/4 tbsp instant yeast (or 1 tbsp active dry yeast)
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup cake flour (or 1tbsp cornstarch + enough all-purpose flour to make up to 1 cup)
1 1/2 to 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
100gm cold butter, cut into 1 inch cubes

For the topping:

about 1/2 cup melted butter for brushing
1 cup castor sugar + 2 tbsp cinnamon (more or less, depending on your taste), mixed together
OR
Glaze of your choice
(I used dark & white chocolate and some sugar sprinkles)


Method:

1. Put the sugar, milk, yeast, salt and vanilla in the processor bowl and pulse to mix well. 

2. Add the cake flour and 1 cup of all-purpose flour and process, adding a little more of the flour as necessary till the dough is thick and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

3. Now add the butter pieces one at a time and process till there no large chunks of butter are left in the bottom of the bowl. 

4. Now add a little more flour until your have a soft, pliable and elastic dough that is most but not overly sticky.

 5. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead gently until the dough no longer sticks to your hands. 

6. Shape the dough into a ball and place in a lightly greased large mixing bowl., turning it to coat well. Cover with a damp towel and let it rise till double in volume. This should take about an hour.

7. Punch down the dough and roll out to a thickness of 1/2" thickness. Cut out doughnuts using a doughnut cutter or whatever you have on hand to cut out 3” diameter with 1” diameter holes. 



8. Re-roll the scraps and cut out more doughnuts. 

9. Let them rise for about 20 minutes or till almost double in size and then bake them at 200C (400F) for about 5 to 10 minutes till they’re done and golden brown. Do not over bake them.


10. Take them out of the oven and immediately brush them with the melted butter and then dip them into the cinnamon sugar mixture. 

11.  If glazing your doughnuts, let them cool completely and then dip one side of the doughnut in the glaze of your choice and let it set.


P.S. This recipe makes about 12 to 14 doughnuts and holes.

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Mango & Yoghurt Popsicles




Mango & Yoghurt Popsicles

Its Summer time !! Mangoes are so much in season and I don't think theres anybody who doesn't love mangoes. This recipe is Super easy, Super Tasty and Fast Vanishing............ !!


Ingredients

2 cup chopped mangoes ( fully ripe & chopped into small pieces)
1 cup thick yoghurt
1/2 cup fine sugar ( U an add more if  required)
3 tbsp light corn syrup
1 tsp lime juice
a few drops of mango essence ( enhances the flavour)

Method

1. Put all the ingredients in a mixer and blend till smooth .
2. Put into paper cups or kulfi molds.
3. Put and icecream stick.
4. Put them in the freezer for atleast 5-6 hours.
5. Take them out, rub your hands a little on the paper cups so that they come out easily and see them vanishing.........








Saturday, 11 May 2013

Corn and Onion Pizza with Tomato Pizza Sauce

                                                            




Corn and Onion Pizza with Tomato Pizza Sauce

It was a delight to be a part of the Home Baker's Challenge Group started by Priya of . This months challenge was hosted by Divya  . It was a home made pizza with a choice of home made tomato pizza sauce or pesto sauce . I chose tomato sauce. This was the first time I made any pizza sauce at home and believe me it was more yummier and affordable than the ready made.

I was not able to take good pics as my pizza vanished before I could take the final shots.....(so you can well imagine how tasty it was) , But next time I will definetly try and take pics before I serve it ......!!

Ingredients
 Recipe source Martha Stewart


For the Dough

3 cups Flour/ Maida 
7 gms Dry  instant yeast (1 pkt.)
1 tsp Salt 
2 tsp Sugar 
2 ½ tbsp Olive oil 
1 tsp Mixed herbs 
½ tsp Chili flakes 
1/2 cup coarse cornmeal for dusting the base

 For the Tomato Pizza Sauce

2 tablespoons olive oil
500 gms red & ripe tomatoes (roughly chopped)
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Pour olive oil into a large skillet, and place over medium heat. 
  2. Using your hands, squeeze tomatoes to crush them. Add to the warm olive oil, along with the remaining ingredients. 
  3. Cook over medium-low heat, breaking up tomatoes with a wooden spoon, until the sauce is thick, 40 to 50 minutes.
  4. Pass sauce through a food mill, discard the seeds, and let cool.


Method for Making Pizza Base

1.    Mix dry yeast with a little warm water and sugar. Keep it for 5 - 10 mins.
2.    Mix  flour, salt, mixed herbs and chilli flakes. Keep them aside.
3.    Make a soft dough using all the ingredients and using little water as required..
4.    Keep the dough covered with a cling wrap for about ½ an hour.
5.    Divide the dough into four balls and dust some cornmeal and roll them keeping ¼ “ thickness.
6.     Prick them with a toothpick.
7.    Keep it for about 15- 20 mins for proofing.
8.    Apply pizza sauce and chopped vegetables according to  taste.
9.     Put pizza cheese on top and bake for about 15 – 20 mins at 220 o C.
10. Cut into wedges and serve.









** You can make the pizza base in advance and store them for a day. Just roll them and bake for about 10 mins. Take them out and cool them properly. cling wrap them and they can be stored for a day at room temp. and for about 2 days if refrigerated.

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Battenberg Cake



Battenberg Cake



My Mother
My Mother, my friend  so dear
Throughout my life you’re always near.
A tender smile to guide my way
You’re the sunshine to light my day.
                                                                                     Anonymous


I learnt Baking from my mother. She used to bake Cakes & Nankhatais from the very beginging. I used to watch her and started developing interest. So Today, I dedicate this Cake to My Mother for being my inspiration .......


Ingredients

1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup ground almonds
2 tsp baking powder 
½ tsp salt
3/4 cup powdered sugar
3/4 cup butter 
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
red or pink food coloring
yellow food coloring 
⅓ cup  apricot jam
 250 gms marzipan (to cover the cake)**


Method

1. Sieve flour, ground almonds and salt with baking powder and keep aside.
2. Beat butter and sugar till light nd fluffy.
3. Add eggs one at a time. Add Vanilla extract.
4. Fold in flour mixture to make a smooth batter.
5. Divide the batter into two equal parts and add pink or red in one part and yellow in another part.




6. Bake them in a preheated oven for about 30 mins at 180 o C.


7. Cut each cake into half lengthwise and join it with apricot jam (warm it a little) to make a checkered pattern keeping one loaf on top of another.


8. Roll the marzipan and cover the cake with the marzipan tightly.


9. Trim the ends of the cake so that checkered pattern is visible.




 **Method for making Marzipan

1 cup finely ground almonds
1 cup icing sugar
2-3 tbsp sugar syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract

Mix ground almonds and icing sugar together. Add vanilla extract. Add sugar syrup spoon by spoon and knead it to make a soft and pliable dough. ( U can also use readymade dough available in the market)


Monday, 6 May 2013

Tomato Tarte Tatin



Tomato Tarte Tatin

Ingredients

Filling
1 tbsp butter
1/2 tbsp caster sugar
250 gms cherry tomatoes (cut into halves)
2 garlic gloves (finely chopped)
1 tbsp white vinegar
Salt & Pepper - To taste

Tart
1 cup flour
40 gms butter
1 tsp oregano (chopped if using fresh)
4-5 tbsp cold water

Method

1. Melt the butter in a pan. Add the sugar and stir over high flame till it becomes golden brown.
2. Lower the flame and add cherry tomatoes and garlic.



3. Switch off the flame, add vinegar, salt and pepper acoording to taste.
4.Put the cherry tomato filling in a 6-7" pan and set aside.





5. For the Tart, put flour, salt, butter and oregano in a food processor and pulse it till the mixture looks like breadcrumbs.
7. Add enough cold water to make a soft dough.
8. Roll the dough in a 7" cirle and place over tomatoes tucking in the edges.




8. Pierce with a fork. abd bake in a preheated oven for about 30-35 mins till golden brown.


9. Run a knife around the edges and invert in a plate .
10. Put some oregano on top for garnishing, cut into wedges and serve.



Thursday, 25 April 2013

My Twisted Cookies

                                 





We Knead to Bake #4 : Torcettini di Saint Vincent
(Sugar twisted Cookies)





                                





This month Aparna of My Diverse Kitchen decided to make Yeasted cookies instead of bread. It was a welcome change for all of us in the group We Knead to Bake !! Though I was a liitle skeptical in the begining but when I tried them with family and friends..for their views.....to my delight everybody liked it!! My son even carried them in his tiifin for his friends....!!


The origin of these biscuits is believed to be from Grissini (breadsticks) which were made from the leftover scraps of bread dough. According to one story, a Grissini baker had some leftover butter which he needed to use up. Inspiration struck and he decided to add the butter to the last batch of his Grissini dough for the day. To be able to differentiate this lot of “breadsticks”, he rolled them in sugar and shaped them into loops, and the Torcetti was born. Torcetti/ Torchettini taste even better when they’re flavoured with lime/ lemon zest or anise.

These yeast-risen cookies are a cross between a bread stick and a caramelized puff pastry palmier. The cookies are crunchy – you can easily tell this by their look. 

Torcettini di Saint Vincent
(Adpated from A Baker’s Tour by Nick Malgieri)

Ingredients

 1/2 cup warm water
 1 1/4 tsp active dry yeast (or 1 tsp instant yeast)
 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp cocoa powder (if making chocolate torcettini)
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp lime/ lemon zest (replace with orange zest for the chocolate version)
 40gm unsalted butter, cold and cut into small pieces
 about 1/3 cup sugar for rolling the cookies


Method


1. Dissolve the yeast in the warm water, in a small bowl and keep aside.

2  Cut cold butter into small pieces and combine them well with flour and salt. Then add the yeast mixture to form a ball. On a slightly floured surface, fold dough onto itself 3 or 4 times or until it is smooth and no longer sticky.

3.  If making chocolate Torcetti, remove 2 tbsp all-purpose flour and add the 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder mentioned in the recipe. Don’t add the lemon zest/ anise. Use orange zest and maybe add 1/ 2 tsp instant coffee powder with the flour.

4..Place dough in the buttered bowl, turning it over so that the top is buttered. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let dough rise until doubled, about an hour. When you pinch off a bit from the top you can see the interior looking a bit like honeycomb. Press down the dough and deflate it, wrap it in cling warp and refrigerate it for at least one hour or up to 24 hours. 

5. When ready to make the cookies, take the dough out and lightly roll it out into an approximately 6” square. If the dough feels sticky, scatter a little sugar on it. Using a pizza wheel cut the dough into four strips of equal width. Cut each strip into 6 equal pieces, by cutting across, making a total of 24 pieces. The measurements are not very critical in this part because this just makes it easier to have 24 equal sized  of dough, as compared to pinching of bits of the dough.

6. Roll a piece of dough on a sugared surface to make a pencil-thick strand of about 4 or 5-inches long, then cross one end over the other about 1-inch up from the ends. Place shaped cookies on prepared baking sheet, spacing about 1-inch apart.

                          

7. Let  twisted cookies rest at room temperature for about  15 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat  oven to 180 C.

8. Bake until they are lightly golden, about 20 to 25 minutes.


Thursday, 18 April 2013

Hokkaido Milk Bread




Bread # 3 Hokkaido Milk Bread With Tangzhong


                                           

Ingredients

For The Tangzhong (Flour-Water Roux)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
 1/2 cup water
1/2 cup milk

For The Dough:
 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
 3 tbsp sugar
 1tsp salt
2 tbsp powdered milk
2 tsp instant dried yeast
1/2 cup milk (and a little more if needed)
1/8 cup cream (25% fat, I used Amul)
 1/3 cup tangzhong (use HALF of the tangzhong from above)
1/4 tsp salt
25gm unsalted butter (cut into small pieces, softened at room temperature)
1/2 to 3/4 cup mini chocolate chips if making the rolls


Method

The Tangzhong  (Flour-Water Roux)

1. Whisk together lightly the flour and water in a saucepan until smooth and there are no lumps. Place the saucepan on the stove, and over medium heat, let the roux cook till it starts thickening. Keep stirring/ whisking constantly so no lumps form and the roux is smooth.
  
2. Cook The roux  until you start seeing “lines” forming in the roux/ tangzhong as you whisk/ stir it. Take the pan off the heat at this point.

3. Let the roux/ tangzhong cool completely and rest for about 2 to 3 hours at least. If not using immediately, transfer the roux to a bowl and cover using plastic wrap. It can be stored in the fridge for about a day. Discard the tangzhong after that.

The Bread Dough

1. Put the flour, salt, sugar, powdered milk and instant yeast in the processor bowl and pulse a couple of times to mix. In another small bowl mix the milk, cream and Tangzhong till smooth and add to the processor bowl. Run on slow speed until the dough comes together. Now add the butter and process till you have a smooth and elastic dough which is just short of sticky.

2. The dough will start out sticky but kneading will make it smooth. If the dough feels firm and not soft to touch, add a couple of tsps of milk till it becomes soft and elastic. When the dough is done, you should be able to stretch the dough without it breaking right away.  When it does break, the break should be form a circle.

 3. Form the dough into a ball and place it in a well-oiled bowl turning it so it is well coated. Cover with a towel, and let the dough rise for about 45 minutes or till almost double in volume.  




4. This recipe makes enough dough to make one loaf (9” by 5” tin), 2 small loaves (6” by 4” tins) or 1 small loaf (6” by 4”) and 6 small rolls (muffin tins). Depending on what you are making, divide your dough. 

5. Roll out each portion of the dough with a rolling pin , about 1/8” thick. 



6. Take one end of the dough from the shorter side of the oval and fold it to the middle of the oval. Take the other end and fold so it slightly overlaps the other fold.



7. Arrange in a loaf tin and cover with a cling l and leave the dough to rise for about 45 minutes.

8. To make the rolls fold them in the same manner described above, but before rolling them up, place some chocolate chip on the dough. Roll the dough rectangles carefully and pinch to seal the edge. Place each roll of dough in a well-oiled muffin cup and cover with a towel. Allow to rise for about 45 minutes.



9. Brush the tops of the rolls and the loaf with milk (or cream) and bake them at 180C for about 20 to 30 minutes till they are done (if you tap them they’ll sound hollow) and beautifully browned on top.





Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Best Ever Chocolate Mud Cake




Best Ever Chocolate Mud Cake

Everbody loves Chocolate  !! This Chocolate Mud Cake is a very simple and yet a delicious cake  that you would like to make it again and again.. ....With One bite you can taste the smoothness of Chocolate and with another bite the grainy texture of almonds hits your tongue !!....


Recipe adapted  from Taste .com

Ingredients

1 1/4 cup sugar
125 gms dark chocolate
125 gms butter
2/3 cup strong coffee( 2 tsp cofee powder mixed with hot water)
1 cup flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup almond flour *
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup yogurt
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence

Method

1. In a Pan Heat butter, chocolate, sugar and coffee conoction.
2. Sieve Baking powder along with flour and cocoa powder. Add almond meal and mix  properly.
3. Beat eggs and yogurt . Add in vanilla essence.
4. Add in  the chocolate mixture and the flour mixture alternatively.
5. The mixture will be a very liquidy batter with no lumps.
6. Grease a  7" Springfoam pan with butter and pour the batter into it. 
7. Bake it at 180 o C for about 1 hr and 15 mins till a crust is formed outside. * *
8. You can cover it with the foil so as not to over brown it.+
9. Cool it and before serving Sprinkle some cocoa powder or icing sugar on top.


 * Grind  almonds in a grinder and use that as almond flour.
** This batter will be very liquidy and hence will take more than one hour to bake.







Sunday, 24 February 2013

Classic & Buttery Croissants






We Knead to Bake #2 : Classic Croissants



This month's challenge was to bake Croissants . Lovely, Buttery, Chocolaty.........Croissants. When I saw the text I felt I would not be able to do it. Though I have made Croissants before also ( a shortcut method) , this was the CLASSIC CROISSANTS.....But when I read the doc twice sent by our group leader, everyone's Fav ..  Aparna of My Diverse Kitchen, I knew that though its going to be a lengthy process, I'll be able to do it...... and I DIT IT !! Aparna has taken all the pain to write such a lenghty process in such a manner that everything is clear...with the help of her pics and the video it made simpler.....Hats Off to her for teaching us in such an easy way !!. I felt She was with me all the time guiding me.....After making these Lovely Croissants, I felt I have become a better Baker and a lot more confident..!!

I have followed the recipe as it was making no changes....I just halved the final dough made some 8 big croissants and a few small ones from the sides.....Kept the other half dough in the freezer for about a week... and made some more using chocolate and jam preserve for the filling this time..... They also tasted awesome though I was not able to take pics of those as something went wrong with the battery of my camera.....and they just vanished by some guests coming over who enjoyed then thoroughly.!!

 For the detailed recipe, pics and tips I think U should follow the link as I did.....
and must try making these.........!!

Ready to go into the oven

Freshly Baked

My helping Hand

Buttery Croissants

Another useful resource which you can follow is by Fine Cooking.


Happy Baking !!
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