Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Healthy Smoothie

Anita tweeted the recipe for this very, tasty and healthy recipe for a strawberry banana smoothie. I tried it today and loved it.



- 6-7 strawberries... it is ok if they are not very sweet
- 1 banana- a ripe one. It will give sweetness and there is no need for sugar/honey
- 2-3 tbsps of curd...

Blend in a mixer. I expected it to turn out sour but it was quite good.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Daal Bhaati

I hail from a small town in Gujarat which is 3-4 hours away from Rajasthan and so some of the Rajasthani food is available in our town... Daal Bhaati is very famous. My mom makes fabulous daal bhaati. It is made very frequently during winter. Sometimes when we are not in the mood for cooking we just order the daal bhaati from small restaurants which serve spicy garlic chutney along with it.

In November'11, I decided to make daal bhaati at home for the first time. Generally, bhaatis are made in a special cooker but I made it in the microwave and it was just as good.


How do you eat it? Break the bhaati into small pieces, pour the daal over and eat with hands/spoon.

Bhaati- nos 7 small ones
  • Add 1.5 cups flour (regular one), lots of oil (triple the quantity you would use when making regular chapattis), some salt and little haldi. Knead the dough with little water. It has to be very, very hard... as hard as you can make it. Make flat oval shapes (you can even make round ones)

  • Boil water in a big vessel. Put the bhaatis in them. They will be done once they come on top. It takes around 10-15 mins. Ensure that the water completely covers the bhatis

  • You can either cook them in a tandoor (available everywhere) for 10-15 mins. Heat a tandoor, put the bhaatis on the grill, cook covered. Once the top becomes firm and brown, turn and cook the other side till they also become brown

  • For microwave, mine has an automatic setting and cooked in 15 mins. For others, I guess the convention mode will have to be used. Put bhaatis on a tava, place tava on high grill and cook on high for 7-8 mins. Turn the bhaatis and cook for another 7-8 mins
Dal (serves 3-4 people)
  • Boil 1/4 cup tuvar dal, 1/4 cup urad dal and 1/2 cup moong chilke wali dal. The idea is to use 3 types of dal in this ratio
  • Crush the dal once boiled. Add the water leftover from boiling bhattis (why throw away nutrients?)
  • Add 1 chopped tomato, salt, green chillies, salt. Boil
  • In another pan, heat oil. Add jeera, hing, 1 small chopped onion, red chilli powder, haldi.
  • Add the mixture to the dal and let it boil
  • After 5 mins add nimbu/tamarind paste
Serve the bhaatis with ghee.

Jam filled muffins

I made these way back in Nov'11.


I took the recipe from Anita's blog.


-1 and 3/4 cups Flour
-1/2 cup sugar
-1 tablespoon baking powder
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-2/3 cup milk
-1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted
-2 eggs
-1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
-1/2 cup jam  ( I used peach jam)


1. Preheat the oven to 400F
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
3. In another bowl, lightly beat eggs, milk, butter and lemon rind.
4. Pour into the dry ingredients and the stir until moistened.
5. Spoon half batter, make a well, add jam, spoon the remaining batter and bake in a preheated oven for 20-25 minutes until the top is golden.

Tutti Fruti cup cakes

I posted this in Feb'12.

I went shopping for groceries at Modern Bazaar in Gurgaon which stocks a lot of imported stuff... came across tutti fruti.
Few months back I was looking for tutti fruti to add in cupcakes and could not find them anywhere. What a bummer. This time I was inspired- reached home at 8 pm and started making cupcakes batter. The recipe was taken from Maria Goretti's blog (she was a VJ on MTV and is the wife of Arshad Warsi). The batter looked fab and I was looking forward to devouring the cupcakes. Unfortunately, I left the microwave on preheat for a very long time. It conked off and wouldn't turn on. I had to throw away the batter. I was planning to get it repaired on Sunday and resume baking.

But I tried turning the microwave on in the morning and it worked. Yoohoo. I returned from work, did the whole thing again and baked a bunch of lovely cupcakes.
Below is the recipe taken from MG's blog.


1 1/4 cup , self rising flour
1/8 tsp salt
3/4 cup whole milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 tbsp butter
1 cup sugar
3 large egg whites
Tutti Fruti (not in original recipe- added by me)


Pre heat oven to 250 degrees Celsius for 20 minutes.. Mine took 10 mins only and then I turned it off.

1.Sift the flour and salt in a bowl and set aside.
2.In another small bowl, stir the milk, vanilla and almond extracts together. I used essence instead of extract.
3.In a large bowl, with the hand mixer on medium, beat the butter and sugar, until it lightens in colour about 3 minutes.
4.On low speed, add the flour to the butter mix in 3 additions and the milk in 2 additions, till its just about blended and set aside.
5.In another large bowl , beat the egg whites with an electric beater till it is nice and shiny white , smooth and nice and stiff. Stop beating when it starts looking like snow... you will see the peaks. This is the hardest and most boring part.
6. Stir about 1/3 of the egg whites into the batter, with the electric beater , then stop and with a spatula , just fold the rest of the beaten egg whites in.
7. Take the tutti fruit on a plate... sprinkle some flour and mix them together. This will prevent them from settling at the bottom. Add into the batter with a spatula.
7. Put the batter into your muffin moulds , they make about 6 and cook them at 160 degrees for 17 minutes, and the little white poppykins are ready , take them out and leave them to cool....

Chikoo Shake

I am trying to eat as healthy as possible these days and scouting for new recipes in that regard. I drink milk everyday. When I was a kid my mom would force me to drink milk every morning. I never liked it... and now it has become a habit. I feel uneasy on mornings when there is no time to drink milk. I hate plain milk and need to add flavor. But is that healthy? Not as healthy as I would like it to be.
I have switched to chikoo shakes. It is the healthiest option in summers.


- 1 chikoo
- 1/2 glass skimmed milk
- 2 drops of honey (I do not use sugar... honey is a healthier option)

- Cut the chikoo. Put it in a mixer jar. Add some milk and honey
- Turn on the mixer
- Add rest of the milk. Turn on mixer
- Serve


Saturday, March 9, 2013

Nutella Lave mug cake

This is the easiest cake I have made. It was quite a rage last year with many food blogs featuring it.



 - 4 tablespoons self rising flour (maida), sifted
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
- 4 tablespoons caster sugar
- 1 medium egg
- 3 tablespoons Nutella
- 3 tablespoons milk
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2-3 teaspoon chocolate chips


- Combine all ingredients except chocolate chips.
- Beat well with a whisk till smooth and blended.
-  Put the batter in 2-3 mugs 3/4th full. Mine was enough for 2 small mugs.
- Add 1 tsp of chocolate chips in each mug and push it through the batter.
- Microwave on high for 1.5 mins. I did it for 1 min and the bottom half was not completely cooked... which was ok since I liked the oozing chocolate. If you microwave for a longer time, it will become completely cooked and lose the oozing chocolate.

You can even add whipped cream... or strawberries and jazz it up a little bit.

Birthday Cake

I made this cake for my hubby's b'day in June last year. I have never tried a cake of this level... with frosting and everything. Instead of the usual cakes I wanted to try something new. I decided on a 2 cakes- one on top of another and red velvet cake. I used a heart shaped pan and a round pan.
Please don't mind the juvenile looking frosting. It is my first attempt.



Cake: Recipe taken from here 

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 cups of sugar
1 cup butter, softened
2 eggs
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 1/2 tbsp liquid red food coloring
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp cider vinegar


- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
- Grease and lightly flour 2 or 3 round 9" cake pans.
- Sift flour and salt together, set aside. 
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the butter and sugar.  Mix until light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs one at a time.  Mix well after each addition. 
- Add the flour mixture to the bowl alternately with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture.  - - Blend in vanilla.
- In a small bowl, mix the 1 1/2 tbsp red food coloring and 1 tbsp cocoa powder until a paste forms.  Add to the sugar and butter mixture.  Mix well.
-  In a small bowl or condiment cup, stir together the baking soda and cider vinegar.  This will foam and should be put into the batter immediately after well mixed.  After adding the foam mixture, blend on medium-high speed until batter is consistent.
- Spoon batter evenly into pans - batter will be very thick!  Level  top of batter with an offset spatula.  Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

- 1 - 8 ounce (227 grams) cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 - 8 ounce (227 grams) tub of Mascarpone cheese, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup (115 grams) confectioners' (icing or powdered) sugar, sifted
- 1 1/2 (360 ml) cups cold heavy whipping cream (double cream)


- In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the cream cheese and mascarpone cheese until smooth.
-Add the vanilla and confectioners sugar and beat until smooth.
-Using the whisk attachment, gradually add the heavy cream and whip until the frosting is thick enough to spread. Add more sugar or cream as needed to get the right consistency.

The cream cheese frosting was perfect for it since the cake was sweet and the cheesy, not so sweet frosting balanced that. A regular frosting would be a bad idea with this.

I used red readymade icing (or is it marzipan) in a tube for the decorations. Too tacky, I know. I do not like marzipan and will avoid it in the future.

Egg Masala Toast

I have been looking for healthy and tasty b'fast options which are quick to make in the morning. I came across masala bread online. It is fried in very little oil... so, does not feel oily but very tasty.



- 2 eggs (original recipe mentions 1 egg but I needed 2 small eggs)
- 1 slice brown bread (If you are not dieting, regular bread can be used)
- 1/2 ginger garlic paste
- paste of 1 onion (its ok if it is not completely crushed)
- Garam masala
- Red chilli powder
- Salt
- Haldi


- Break 2 eggs in a bowl
- Add all the ingredients and mix them together
- Dip the bread in the mixture
- Heat a non stick pan with a little oil. I add 1-2 teaspoon oil and then spread it out
- Put the bread in the pan... fry on both sides till done

Quick and easy.

Chocolate Cookies




I came across the recipe for chocolate cookies online. It is extremely simple and made with ingredients at home. I came home and within half an hour had a plate of beautiful, tasty, soft and gooey cookies.
I am posting the recipe below... will have to search where I copied from.

- 2 egg whites
- 1 cup ground almonds
- 3 tbsp cocoa
- 1 and half cup powdered sugar

- Preheat oven to 400 degree F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. I did not have any so used oil. I think parchment paper would have been better. I used a muffin tray since I did not want the batter to spread out and become one flat cookie.
- Mix all the ingredients till it becomes a cohesive mixture.
- Fill a large bowl with cold water and wet your hand before rolling the mixture into small balls.
- Arrange on the tray and bake for 11 mins.

I prefer the soft and gooey texture compared to hard one. Must try.

Carrot Cake

I baked this cake in August. The recipe has been taken from Anita's blog.