Friday, May 29, 2015

Red Velvet Cheesecake Cake



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This is a awesome recipe of a red velvet cake and cheesecake combined together to give and divine taste... To be exact this is the first cake i have made with a filling and frosting... i wanted to make this cake for my daughters soon coming birthday, as i was a bit shaky with the thought of making a full and proper cake i went in for a trial (in other words i was unable to stop myself from baking this when i came across this recipe from "Recipe Girl" site and tried out. The cake was simply awesome and it turned out to be super tasty... when i had the pleasure to share it with my neighbors they were also amazed with the super tasty cake.


The recipe may look too big and a very hard job to be completed but trust me this was easy to be executed even for a beginner like me.

Lets get ourselves baking this awesomeness...


Recipe Adapted From Recipegirl.com

Cheesecake

Ingredients

Two 8ounce pack cream cheese(room temp)
2/3 cup granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
2 large eggs
1/3 + 1/3 sour cream + whipping cream or 2/3 cup whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla essence

Method

* Preheat the oven to 325 F/ 160 C. Prepare a 9" spring form pan by wrapping 2 layers of aluminium foil in the bottom of the pan, grease the pan and line it with parchment / foil. Heat 500 ml water for the water bath.

* In a large bowl blend the cream cheese until smooth and creamy. Mix in the sugar and salt, beat for 2 mins. Add the eggs one at a time, blending after each egg.
  
* Finally add the cream and vanilla essence and mix well till fully incorporated. 

* Pour the mixture in the prepared pan and tap the pan over a hard surface to remove any air bubbles.

* Waterbath: In a larger pan, place the cake pan and pour the hot water to an inch into the large pan.

* Bake for 45 in the preheated oven, Remove and cool for an hour then freeze it completely (freezing the cheesecake will help in easy handling, this will take several hours or over night)

Red Velvet Cake

Ingredients (i have divided the ingredient list for 2 equal layers, can make it combined and then divide the batter)

1 1/4 + 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
3/4 + 3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 + 1 1/2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 + 3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 + 1/2 tsp salt
1 + 1 large eggs (room temp)
3/4 + 3/4 cup oil
1/2 + 1/2 cup buttermilk
2 + 2 tbsp red food color
1 + 1 tsp vanilla essence
1 + 1 tsp white vinegar 

Method

* Preheat oven to 350 F/ 180 C. Grease two 9" pans and line with foil / parchment paper.
NOTE: i made two batches of batter and baked separately. 

* In a large bowl whisk together the dry ingredients(flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda & salt).

* In another bowl add the wet ingredients( egg, oil, buttermilk,red food color, vanilla essence and vinegar) and mix well.

* Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well till everything is combined.

* Bake for 25 - 30 mins (single pan, batter divided) 35 - 40 mins (2 pans batter divided) or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. 
TIP: i use a thick, wet cloth strip wrapped around the pan.This helps to bake a flat topped cake...


* Remove from the pan, Place it in a wire rack and cool completely. Remember you need 2 cakes... just reminding :D

NOTE: If in case your cake comes out with a hard crust then just brush the cake with some simple syrup.
Combine 1/4 cup sugar with 3/4 cup water and boil till the sugar dissolves. your simple syrup is ready to be brushed on the cake.

Cream Cheese Frosting
NOTE: For me the frosting was a bit runny.

Ingredients

2 1/2 cup powdered sugar
Two 8ounce cream cheese (room temp)
1/2 cup unsalted butter (room temp)
1 tbsp vanilla essence

Method

* In a large bowl, using a electric hand mixer on med-high speed beat the powder sugar, cream cheese, butter and vanilla until it is smooth and creamy(do not over beat).

* Keep in fridge till frosting the cake.

Assembling The Cake

* Place one layer of the red velvet cake then the second layer will be the frozen cheesecake layer and the third layer will be again a red velvet cake.

Frost The Cake

* Apply a crumb coat layer to the cake- use a long, thin spatula to cover the cake completely with a thin and even layer of frosting. Be sure to wipe off your spatula each time you are about to dip it back into the bowl to get more frosting (this way you won't be transferring any red crumbs into the bowl of frosting). 

*Don't worry at this point about the crumbs being visible in the frosting on the cake. When your cake has a thin layer of frosting all over it, place it into the refrigerator for 30 minutes to "set" the frosting. 

* Once the first layer of frosting is set, apply the 2nd layer. Start by adding a large scoop of frosting onto the top of the cake. Use a long, thin spatula to spread the frosting evenly across the top and then spread it down the sides of the cake too.

* Because you applied a crumb-coat layer, you shouldn't have any red crumbs floating around in the final frosting layer. Decorate, as desired. Keep this cake refrigerated.





Thursday, May 21, 2015

Spicy Garlic Chilli Powder Chutney



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This is a very simple recipe for all garlic and spicy lovers... this dish can be relished with idli and dosa... Caution: with this as sidedish you may lose the number of idli's or dosa's consumed.

This can be prepared within minutes and while making this the house smells of great garlic aroma...
And the most convenient part of this dish is this stays good for a very long time so i always make a big batch of this and store it in an airtight box and this comes very handy in times when you feel lazy to make any sauteing or grinding.

Tastes divine with hot idlies... sure you will fall in love with this dish as everyone at our house loves this...



Ingredients:

Garlic 15 cloves
Chilli Powder 2 - 3 tbsp (adjust to your taste)
Corriander Powder 2 tbsp
Salt (i use atleast 2 tsp for the above mentioned ingredients but adjust to your taste preference)
Oil 1/2 - 3/4 cup (i normally pour oil without measuring and adjust to the preferred consistancy) 

Method:


  • Add the garlic cloves to the blender and pulse it till coarsely ground.
  • Transfer the garlic to a metal bowl and add the chilli powder, corriander powder and salt.
  • Mix well till all the ingredients are blended well.
  • Pour the oil in a pan and heat it till the smoking point.
  • Add the oil to the garlic mixture and keep mixing with a spoon so there is no dry powder is left behind.
  • Adjust the consistency with more or less heated oil.
Serving suggestion: If you find it too spicy after making add a tbsp of ghee and serve.





Sunday, May 17, 2015

Mint(y) Chaas / Buttermilk



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According to me the best summer coolant drink is Buttermilk / Chaas... I remember my grandma used to make some great buttermilk, those are the most tastiest buttermilk that i have tasted till date. i have taken a step ahead and made these best refreshing and tasty mint chaas... this is very easy and tasty summer cooler...

Lets keep refreshing...



Ingredients:

Yoghurt- 1 cup
Mint leaves- Handful
Ginger - 1/2 inch
green chilli- 1
Salt- 1/4 tsp


Water- 1 liter




Method:

Mix all ingredients with little water and blend till finely blended. mix in the rest amount of water and serve over ice cubes.



Tips:

I blend every ingredients except water and yoghurt and freeze in the ice cube trays, When needed add 2 - 3 cubed for 1 liter buttermilk. Instant Mint Chaas Ready in minutes...

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Mint(y) Lemonade
Kesar Pista Kulfi


Thursday, May 14, 2015

Mint (y) Lemonade



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Living in Doha i cant be complaining about the climate here but this summer has been really scorching...
Today temperature was 49.5 degrees... which made me look around to cool, basically i love mint in almost anything and everything so it has been simple for me to induce it into almost every drink i consume... let it be mint infused water or mint ice tea or mint chaas/ buttermilk.
I have mint growing in abundance in my backyard so it has become much more simpler to make these refreshing drinks with freshly plucked mint leaves...
Atlast i came up with this minty lemonade recipe with very little or no sugar recipe... as i have planned to consume this drink almost everyday i thought of starting it without sugar and to my surprise it was awesome...
To ward off the thirst and dehydration, I have been making batch after batch of this sugar-free, mint-infused lemonade. It’s simple as can be, but in the heat one hardly has the energy for anything more elaborate, and this is a delightfully refreshing and tasty beverage to tinkle your ice cubes in.
After making todays batch i thought of clicking some pictures to share my freshness with my blog readers too...
It was kinda windy today and that led the photo-shoot to a disaster...



Lets cool...



Ingredients

1 whole lemon juiced
15 fresh mint leaves
1 liter cold water
1/4 tsp salt
5 tbsp sugar (optional and even honey can be used)



Method

Add all ingredients in a blender and run it till the mint leaves have been blended well

                                             OR
Use a stick blender and blend everything.

Your good to go... enjoy the refreshing taste of the minty lemon juice this summer and keep yourself cool...






Saturday, May 9, 2015

Oats Muffin



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Hello everyone... what have you been cooking/baking recently? My oven has been busy with these bunch of flowers today... haha you heard me right, the reason i said so is coz i used my rose silicon muffin liners for these and the outcome was simply beautiful.

These muffins are too much on the healthier side as the main ingredients are listed as oats, whole wheat flour and brown sugar. i think these make a great breakfast or even a midnight snack with a glass of hot or cold chocolate milk.

Lets start munching...


Ingredients:

1 cup oats flour (coarsely ground)
1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup brown sugar (even while will do)
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

2 eggs
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup oil
1 tsp vanilla extract

(Optional)
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp chocolate essence


Method:

Preheat the oven to 200 C.

In a small bowl, combine the first 5 ingredients. In another small bowl, beat the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Stir into the dry ingredients just until moistened.

If making dual muffins divided the batter equally and added the cocoa powder and chocolate essence to one part.



Line the muffin pan and grease it ( i used silicon liners), add a tbsp of vanilla batter to one side and add a tbsp of cocoa batter to the other side and repeat this process all.

Tap the muffin tin hardly to even the batter and release the air bubbles.

Bake in a pre heated oven for 15 - 17 mins or till the toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Cool completely in a wire rack, store in the refrigerator.
Serve warm. yields a dozen muffins. 



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Friday, May 8, 2015

Homemade Chocolate Syrup




Who's up for a cold chocolate milk in this hot summer... 

Why buy chocolate syrup from store when there are loads of weird ingredients on the label, more over when you can make this super stuff right in your kitchen... It's so easy to make your own chocolate syrup, and you probably already have all the ingredients you need to whip up a batch.

This homemade chocolate syrup recipe isn't only an acceptable replacement for commercially-made chocolate syrups, it sort of beats the pants off of store-bought. It costs almost nothing to make, it takes all of 10 minutes to whip up, you know exactly what went into it, and it tastes amazing.

I bet you that there's no going back to the store bought once you have made a batch of these and tasted it...You’ve gotta love that.

It makes milk, coffee, smoothies, ice cream you name it taste fantastic, it was even super tasty on my cake... It’s classic chocolate syrup, after all.

Making homemade chocolate syrup has been on my to-try list for awhile, and now I’m kicking myself for having waited so long. Please, dear reader, don’t make the same mistake I did. Please, make haste … and make yourself some chocolate syrup and start enjoying these...

Lets get Chocolaty...


Ingredients:
1/2 cup unsweetened Cocoa (Hershey's if you want the store bought taste, but any will do)
1 cup Sugar
1 cup water
1 teaspoon Vanilla
Dash of salt


Method:

Combine cocoa, sugar, and salt in a saucepan. Add water, and mix until smooth. 
Bring this mixture to a boil. Allow it to boil for one minute, be careful this does not over boil. 
Remove from heat, when this cools add the vanilla.
Enjoy it with hot or cold milk, drizzled over puddings and ice creams... i love them even in my coffees... yummy


Friday, May 1, 2015

Dried Shrimp / Sennakunni Idli Podi



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Recently i got to taste this very different flavored idli podi at my friends place... It was not of anything i have tasted before but the flavor was somewhat very familiar to me so i asked the friend what were the ingredients and to my surprise the flavor giving ingredient was dried shrimp... yes you heard it right... This is the non veg form of idli podi... you ll love the flavor when combined with some oil and tasted with soft idli or crispy dosa's...

Lets get shrimpy...



Ingredients:


1 cup dried shrimp / sennakunni
1/2 cup Urad dal
1/4 cup Channa dal
1/4 cup Roasted bengal gram
1 tsp Peppercorn
6-8 Dry red chillies
1/2 tsp Asafoetida powder
Curry leaves a handful
Salt




Method:


Dry roast all the ingredients (except salt) separately till everything is golden brown.

Dry Roast the curry leaves too.
Let them cool completely, add all the ingredients to a blender and grind till it becomes a coarse powder.
Add enough salt and run the blender till the salt is blended.
Transfer the powder to a air tight box.
When needed serve mixed with some oil and hot steaming idli or crispy dosa...



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Sesame Idli Podi

Capsicum Chutney
Onion Chutney
Ragi Idli/ Dosa
Broken Wheat Idli
Extra Soft Idli