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Raspberry Lemon Syllabub

Raspberry Lemon Syllabub 1

I am back after a nice hiatus – though I must confess I have been making and eating desserts. This is an old English dessert that is perfect for those hot summer nights. It is a really simple whipped cream dessert that is lemon flavored and of course is flavored with  wine. Its very simple to put together and is so refreshing. When they were served in the past the acids (citric) firm the cream and separation occurs and it looks like a lovely with the solids on top and the liquid on the bottom. I used less acid and less alcohol so there was not a lot of separation.

I used a Pinot Grigio, however you can use any white wine that you like and a sweeter one, just realize that if you use too sweet of a wine you will have to reduce the sugar content. I hope you enjoy it as much as we all did.

Ingredients

Prep time: 30 minutes, Serves 8

  • 100 gm granulated sugar
  • 2 lemons grate the rinds and juiced
  • 150 ml white wine
  • 500 ml heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 400 gms raspberries
  • 1/2 cup orange or mango juice
  • 40 gm icing sugar
  • fresh mint

Method

Put the granulated sugar, lemon juice and wine in a saucepan and stir over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Once it dissolves, transfer it to a bowl and let it cool.

Whip heavy cream until soft peaks. Fold in the vanilla extract and the lemon juice mixture. The mixture will begin to stiffen – so make sure not to overfold it. Refrigerate for about 15 minutes.

Combine raspberries (saving some for decoration), juice and icing sugar in a bowl and crush. Refrigerate for about 10 minutes.

To arrange, pour some of the heavy cream mixture into a wine glass or a champagne flute. Top with the raspberry mixture, fresh raspberries, and fresh mint. Return to the refrigerator. Serve chilled.

 

 


Meyer Lemon Squares – Brulee’d

 

Have you had Meyer Lemons? If not, run out and get them! They are amazing. They have the most delicate lemon flavor without being overly tart. We did not have Meyer Lemons growing up and I first tasted them when I came to the US. Now if you are thinking – wait a minute he writes about every fruit and loves it – then you are sort of right. I write about the fruits I love. There are some like the Guava that I do not like. I did not like it when I was growing up and refused to eat it. As an adult I tried it again and still have not developed a taste for it. In the future my taste buds may decide differently but for now ‘C’est la vie’.

I spend a lot of time (relatively speaking) on reading cooking books, magazines and blogs. The creativity is simply amazing out there in every facet of life. I love the fact that there are so many people who are constantly trying new things. For me being in the kitchen and baking/cooking is fantastic therapy. A lot of people think that baking is challenging. It can be a little daunting because you have to get the measurements right (and have a few of the right tools) but you can do it!. Start with this recipe, follow it to the T or make it your own!

I made this for a dinner we had at a friends house. It was a pot luck dinner and it was simple but so delightful. I will say it is best to have these on the day they are made as the brulee cracks really well. If you do keep it in the refrigerator you will have to brulee another round of sugar on top. I really liked using my torch for this one.  You can certainly try doing the brulee in the oven, but only if you have done it before.

Ingredients

Recipe adapted from here

Prep time: Cooking Time:

For the crust:
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
For the filling:
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup fresh meyer lemon juice (about 4 meyer lemons)
  • Zest of the meyer lemons used
  • 2/3 cup  all-purpose flour
To Brulee
  • Demerara sugar

Method

For the crust
Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan. Line with parchment paper in two rectangular overlapping strips. This will allow you to lift the entire tart out easily.
Using the scraper attachment (or paddle attachment) of your mixer beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Add the flour and salt and stir until incorporated.
Press this into the baking pan. I use my measuring cup to help flatten it down. Make sure you get it all the way to the sides. Put it in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes.
Pop it into the oven and bake until the crust begins to turn a golden brown (15 – 20 minutes). Take it out of the oven and let it cool completely on a wire rack.
For the filling

Whisk all the ingredients for the filling until well blended. Pour into the pan with the cooled crust and bake for 25-30 minutes. Start checking at 25 minutes to make sure the middle has set. To do this jiggle the pan and make sure the center barely moves. This means that it has set as it will continue to firm up after you take it out of the oven.
Let this cool completely and then use the parchment overhangs to lift it out of the pan.

To brûlée

Sprinkle the sugar in an even coating over the top. Ignite your torch and move slowly from left to right as the sugar begins to melt and then caramelize. Cut and serve.
If you are not going to eat all of them that day. You can just brulee the portion you are going to serve.

 


Coconut Cake with Passion Fruit Icing

Coconut Cake + Passionfruit ice cream

 

I love birthdays especially since I get to bake something. Its not all about me, really. Its about finding out what the person likes and then coming up with something for them. Well Lorne loves anything coconut (which I incidentally love as well). So I looked through all my recipes and online to see what was there with coconut and then one other ingredient. I found it – ‘Passion fruit’.

Now that’s a whole other story. If you have been on my blog before you know I love Passion Fruit. Ever since I first had it in Hawaii, I went bonkers. When I returned from Hawaii, I even bought a couple of bottles of concentrate back. Well I found Passion Fruit pulp in the farmers market – and yes they even carry Passion Fruits ever so often. I use the frozen pulp which is a little tart and does not have the beautiful looking seeds that I think scream – Passion Fruit. I found a variety of passion fruit that grows down south, I nearly bought it till I found they are pretty aggressive so I depend only on what I get at the market.

The decision was to make a coconut cake and frost it with a passion fruit icing. The initial idea was to make a curd and split the cakes and fill it with passion fruit curd. Well time on Thursday got a little better of me (sorry Lorne) and I decided to take the easy way out. This recipe is based off a recipe in an Australian magazine ‘Taste’. The cake was super moist and the passion fruit icing was the perfect touch of sweetness and tartness.

I hope you make it and enjoy it as much as we all did.

Ingredients

for the cake

  • 175g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/3 cups flour
  • 2/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup yoghurt

for the Icing

  • 5 tablespoons passion fruit pulp
  • 1 1/4 cup icing (powdered) sugar mixture, sifted
  • 125g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut toasted

Method

Preheat the oven to 350F. Line and grease and line a 9 inch cake pan. I have a silicone pan and do not grease it.

In a food processor blend all the ingredients except the shredded coconut until well mixed. Pour the mix into a large bowl and then add the shredded coconut and stir to combine. Pour this into your prepared pan. Bake for 40-43 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Set the pan on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Take the cake out of the pan and let it cool completely before icing.

For the icing

Cream the butter until smooth. Add the icing (powdered) sugar and passion fruit and continue to beat until it is smooth. Add the toasted coconut and stir.

Put the cake on your platter and pour the icing over and spread it.

 

 


Bread Rolls/Pav

 

I love bread and growing up in Bombay (Mumbai) we used to get a variety of bread rolls for breakfast. There were a couple of types one being Kadak Pav (Hard bread) and my favorite just called Pav. The reason I was not a fan of the Kadak Pav is that it had a really hard outer crust. The insides were really super but I just did not appreciate chomping into that hard crust. The only times I did eat it was when I was not feeling well and would dunk a liberally buttered one into Tea.

Some of the ways I would eat Pav for breakfast was with a little butter and then some sugar sprinkled over. At other meals I would love to dunk it in whatever curry we had as it would soak it all up.

Pav’s are also eaten with one of the very popular street foods call ‘Pav bhaji’ – literally translating to Bread vegetable. The vegetable portion of it is a mixture of veggies (tomatoes, onions, cauliflower, peas …) cooked down to a thick gravy. The cooking down is totally dependent on the cook. The Pav is toasted with butter and served alongside to what I consider an amazing dish.

After trying multiple recipes on the net, here is one that I have come up with that works for me. There were 4 batches of this made over Christmas along with the bhaji for our 2nd dinner.

Ingredients

1 tablespoon active-dry yeast
1 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup milk
1 large egg, room temperature
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 + 1 tablespoon melted butter
Method
Stir yeast and sugar into warm water and let it sit for 5-7 minutes till frothy.
Warm milk to tepid and then whisk in the egg, vegetable oil, salt and one tablespoon of the melted butter.
Pour both above liquid mixtures into a mixing bowl and then add the flour. Knead until it all comes together. I use my kitchen aid on slow at first and then for about 8 minutes. The dough will be smooth and slightly tacky. Put the dough in a well oiled bowl and cover. Set it in a warm place to rise until doubled in size about 1 hour.
Line a 9×13 pan with parchment paper.
Dust your counter top with a little flour. Turn out the dough and form it into a rectangle. Cut 12 equal parts out of it using your dough cutter. Roll each into a tight ball and place in the prepared pan. When all the balls have been rolled, cover the pan and let the dough balls rise for 30-40 minutes or until doubled in size.
Pre-heat your oven to 375F.
When the dough balls have risen brush them with the remaining butter and put the pan in the oven. Bake the rolls until the tops become golden about 15-18 minutes. Once they are done remove pan and let it sit on a wire rack for 10 minutes before removing the rolls and letting them rest on a wire rack until cool.
The rolls will stay out on the counter wrapped for about 3 days and then another 3 in the fridge. They are delicious toasted with a little butter.

 

 

 


Green Apple Pickle

Green Apple Pickle

Another recipe from my trip to London, I got to spend a lot of time with my Aunt and she showed me quite a few recipes. This is the green apple pickle. I had never had it before and so we set out to make it. I was not quite sure what it was going to be like but it was absolutely delicious. My Aunt never really uses recipes but goes by how it tastes and so she showed me how she makes it.These recipes are the best – when you actually get to learn from a great cook.

The apples and peppers that were there were a little different from the ones we get here in the states but I did make it and it turned out absolutely delicious. We have been slathering it on everything – well nearly.

It paired really well on baguettes with cream cheese and topped with the pickle.

Go ahead and try it.

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons methi (Fenugreek) seeds
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seeds
  • 2 heaped teaspoons jeera (Cumin) seeds
  • 3 medium sized banana peppers
  • 1 cubanelle pepper
  • 1 red sweet Italian red chilli pepper
  • 20 curry patta leaves
  • 1 inch piece of ginger
  • 8 flakes of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 heaped tablespoons of Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 3 medium sized granny smith apples
  • ½ cup of sugar
  • 1 cup rasins or crasins
  • ¼ cup apple cider or malt vinegar
  • 1 ½ tsp Sea salt

Method

Chop the apples into cubes, discarding the centers and stems. Salt the apples and let them sit for about 2 hours.

Roast the methi (Fenugreek), mustard and jeera (Cumin) seeds for about a minute (they should smell fragrant). Set them aside to cool and then grind them to a powder

De-seed the peppers and cut into chunks.

Grind the garlic and ginger into a paste with about a tablespoon of brown/malt vinegar.

Heat a cup of oil on medium heat in a medium sized pan. When it is hot add the curry patta leaves and fry for about a minute – do not let them brown. Lower the flame to a medium low and add the garlic ginger paste and saute for about a minute. Add the ground spice and saute for another minute. Add the turmeric and Kashmiri chilli powder. Stir for about a minute.

Now add the peppers and saute for a minute. Pat the apple chunks with a paper towel and then add them to the pot. Stir to distribute all the spices. Cover and cook. Stir every 5 to 10 minutes. Add extra oil if needed.

After about 15 minutes, add the sugar and crasins. Stir to incorporate and cover. Cook for another 15 minutes on a low flame, stirring intermittently. The apples should be very soft by now. Add the salt. Taste and add more salt/vinegar/Kashmiri chilli powder. Add the vinegar only if you want it more tart.


My first foray – into blogging

I started my culinary foray when I was young and because I loved desserts. I always wanted to know what went into the desserts I ate and luckily for me I had a lot of people who were very happy to share their recipes with me. I received a lot of encouragement from everyone as they happily chowed down on what I made.

It’s also with fond memories that I remember trying my first black forest cake with an electric oven whose top you had to lift off completely to test the cake. It was still not done. However, as I put the top back on I saw the middle slowly collapsing. Yes, I had possibly taken the top off a little early, but the design of the oven made for a complete loss of heat. The cake, however, was happily received by all and it was still delicious – it could be attributed to the amount of rum I poured into the cake (we did not get Kirsch liqueur in India).  As you can possibly guess I started deviating from following a recipe precisely because I never had everything on hand and luck has been on my side most of the time (keyword being ‘most’).

I love cooking (and eating) and love sharing food with friends. I am so happy to have read so many wonderful blogs and been able to try so many new and delightful recipes. Here is my little way of giving back and bringing a smile to someone’s face and have a lot of happy tummies out there.

I hope you enjoy this blog and look forward to your feedback.