22 Dec

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

I am the happiest mom when my kids take to any dish, any food.

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

Slowly my older one has started demanding the zebra cake quite regularly. And whatever he asks is good for the younger one too. She copies her elder bro to the T.

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

The next in line for the current favourite is pasta. I have few pasta recipes here, this time I decided to use leftover pizza sauce from here.

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

Since the sauce was ready the cooking of this meal was a breeze. I just reheated the sauce and simultaneously boiled pasta to al dente stage.

Mix the two adjust spices like salt, oregano, mixed herbs, red chilli flakes etc.

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

Serve hot with garlic bread or alone. I absolutely loved the taste of sauce in the pasta and may keep it in my freezer for such quick meals.

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

Pasta with Pizza Sauce

The most awesome and delicious pasta ever. This pizza sauce complements the pasta well.

  • 250 grams spirali pasta
  • 3 cups of pizza sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of cheese, grated
  • mixed herbs
  • salt to taste
  1. In a thick bottom pan, heat the pizza sauce.
  2. In a deep vessel, boil water with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and salt. Once the water starts boiling slowly add pasta, allowing the water to continue simmering all the while.
  3. Cook the pasta in simmering water for another 5-8 minutes. Keep checking using a fork to cut the pasta. If it takes slight pressure to cut through the pasta then it is done. This stage is known as al dente. Do not over cook the pasta.
  4. Drain and sprinkle the pasta with little olive oil to keep it from sticking together. Also you may want to collect this water and use as stock in a soup. You can run pasta under cold water as well to stop further cooking.
  5. Add pasta to heated sauce. Mix well. Adjust spices and salt. Garnish with grated cheese. Serve hot.

19 Dec

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

In the last few months, I came across so many of crinkle cookies across the web, least to say I was intrigued.

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Since the kids are born I rarely get time to explore anything more than what is necessary. That should justify why I didn’t get a chance to explore crinkle cookies earlier.

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Initially I wasn’t very keen on trying them as few earlier recipes that I explored just coated the cookies in powdered sugar after baking, making it nothing interesting for me. But then I came across this recipe from very talented Cheryl with whom I have sometimes interacted at the Home Bakers Guild on Facebook.

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Her recipe calls for coating the cookies in powdered sugar before baking. Now that sounded interesting. Then I got around checking some more recipe and found that most recipes do call for coating prior to baking.

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

I found was that despite attempt to coat the cookies liberally with sugar, mine do not show a thick layer like Cheryl’s after baking. Also after initial puffing and rising, the cookies took more flattened look.

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

And I found baking for 15 minutes dried them out totally so I baked balance 2 batches at 10 minutes and they were soft and chewy. Additionally, Cheryl made roughly 20 cookies from this, I got 3 dozens. No idea how. :)

I was skeptical about so much sugar in coating and baking but truthfully these cookies had optimum sweetness.

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

This being holiday season, the choice of crinkle cookies at this time was perfect. Hubby as usual loved it  and couldn’t stopped eating them once he came back from office. Kids also took to them. That makes me a happy mom.

I was very happy with the cookies but there are few things that I would like to change and may post an updated or better version soon.

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

Eggless Whole Wheat Crinkle Cookies

These are delicious, soft, fudge-like cookies coated generously with powdered sugar.

Yields: 3 dozens

  • Bowl 1:
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoon whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon of salt
  • Bowl 2:
  • 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons of of granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 1/2 cup of cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup of apple sauce
  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
  1. Mix ingredients of 2nd bowl using a hand mixer for 5-7 minutes till it is homogeneous. The mixture should not lighten too much as fluffy mixture would produce cakey cookies.
  2. Whisk together 1st bowl ingredients in a separate bowl quickly.
  3. Add the dry ingredients in 2nd bowl in 4-5 batches, mix after each addition. Do not over mix in this step. The ingredients should mix just enough to not have dry lumps. The dough would be a sticky at this time.
  4. Cover the bowl with cling film and refrigerate the dough overnight. You can even do it for couple of hours if you are short on time. Do not skip this step. You can store refrigerated dough for upto 3 days.
  5. On the day of baking, pre-heat oven to 180 C. Line the cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  6. Remove the bowl from refrigerator, using a melon scoop shape then dough into small balls. Dip these balls in bowl of powdered sugar. Turn out to get it coated liberally. Place the coated balls on prepared baking sheet. You may need to lightly oil your palms before handling the dough, I didn't though. If the dough gets sticky and not manageable then put it in freezer for 10 minutes. It behaves well when cold.
  7. Bake for 8-10 minutes or just until the edges are slightly firm but center is still soft. For moist chewy chewy cookies do not over bake or else they dry out. Remove from the tray and cool on a wire rack. These cookies taste best the day of baking.
  • Preparation time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 10 minutes
  • Total time: 20 minutes

Sending this to Bake Fest # 38 originally started by Vardhini.

 

16 Dec

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

I have grown up at a house, which boasted of the tallest Date palm in the city and served as landmark for people around. Even my school mates knew me more by the ‘girl who lives in that tall tree house.’

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

I am not really a tea-drinker and can be induced very rarely to drink tea. But when I started developing this recipe I was suddenly struck with smell and aroma of tea infused bake.

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

I did not actually know the exact flavour I could smell but I was hooked on the idea of infusing tea in the recipe.

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

After lot of thought I decided to go for Long leaf Green tea. Since I focus largely on healthy bakes I have not used refined sugar and substituted regular maida or flour with whole flour.

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

The result is a beautiful, moist and aromatic tea cakes. They are a delight to eat and easy to please the crowd with. For the recipe and many benefits of dates, hop onto here. More recipes from me, can be found here.

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

Eggless Date and Walnut Green Tea Infused Cupcakes

Sending this to Bake Fest # 38 originally started by Vardhini.

12 Dec

How To Throw The Perfect Casino Party

Putting together a casino themed party represents a real challenge anyway, but when you add themed food to the equation, then it really gets difficult. Parties of this kind are more popular now thanks to the word spreading online through online casino sites like those found at www.iphonecasino.ca, and these three food and drink ideas will guarantee yours goes with a swing.

Roulette wheel cake

The roulette wheel is instantly recognisable and makes for a great centrepiece to a casino party. Bake a round cake sized approximately 12 inches, and divide it up equally into the black and red sections of a roulette wheel (plus the one green one). You can make one fat cake or three thinner ones staked on top of each other using icing as filling and use an icing gun to add decorations like numbers (this requires a bit of skill) and you have a treat both adults and children will love.

Cookie playing cards

Another great casino party treat for all ages; here you make the cookies by mixing together butter, sugar, flour, egg yolk and salt in a bowl, before rolling the dough out between sheets of wax paper and cooling for half an hour. At this point trim and cut it into rectangle shapes of 2 by 2 ½ to create the cards. When it comes to the design stage, you could either cover them in white icing before using black and red icing for the symbols, or cut the symbols out of the dough and fill them with black and red jam.

Jelly Gaming Chips

These are easy to make, as they simply involve making jelly in the normal way, before cutting it into small round slices to resemble the gaming chips used at a casino. You can use black cherry jelly for black chips and raspberry for red ones, to add more variety, and if your casino themed party is adults-only, why not add some alcohol to the mixture?

It can be stressful to put together a casino party, but success will be in the bag if you produce treats like these ones at your next bash.

Disclaimer: This article was provided by an external writer, Emily Falcon.

08 Dec

Home-made Chiwda Namkeen | The Best Kind

Home-made Chiwda

I have never ever made namkeen or farsan at home. Lately I did try few times using puffed rice, it was passable at best.

Home-made Chiwda

Home-made Chiwda

Then one day, I mistakenly bought a 1 kg pack of thin rice flakes in place of thick ones for making the regular poha (breakfast) at home.

Home-made Chiwda

Home-made Chiwda

I was loath to waste it or try to cook and eat as poha for breakfast.

Home-made Chiwda

Home-made Chiwda

Ever since moving to Pune, I have been introduced to home-made Chiwda quite a lot especially during festivals.

Home-made Chiwda

Home-made Chiwda

Hoping that a neighbour would be able to help me make some reasonably good chiwda, I connected with Roopali.

Home-made Chiwda

Home-made Chiwda

I was blown away to say the least. I have never eaten such perfect Chiwda at home. In the first go.

Home-made Chiwda

Home-made Chiwda

I didn’t use up the entire batch of flakes. I used only 1/3rd and after experiencing such perfection I requested her to teach me again while I also jot down measurements.

Home-made Chiwda

Home-made Chiwda

So I bring to you this recipe which is hers and only recorded and shot by me.

Home-made Chiwda

Home-made Chiwda

My mother has already told me I have to make for her when I visit her next. The most important thing is to grind salt, sugar and tartaric acid together. Do not skip this step as the salt tends to sink to the bottom if not ground together. Grinding together ensures that salt and spices stick to the flakes and other ingredients well.

Home-made Chiwda

Home-made Chiwda

Home-made Chiwda Namkeen

Home-made Chiwda

A must-try chiwda namkeen.

Yields: 300 grams of namkeen

  • 250 grams of rice flakes
  • 1/3 cup roasted black gram, de-husked
  • 1/2 cup of sliced dry coconut
  • 21/2 tablespoon of vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup of peanuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1/8 cup of sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon of tartaric acid
  • salt to taste
  • 4-5 dried red chillies, split them using a kitchen shear
  • few curry leaves
  1. Grind together sugar, salt and tartaric acid. Set aside.
  2. Heat oil in wok, add peanuts. Fry them till they are roasted nicely. Remove from the wok and set aside.
  3. Add split chillies, curry leaves and sliced coconut. Fry them till coconut turns nice golden brown or the tenderness is gone and it is crisp.
  4. Add roasted black chanas. Mix well.
  5. Now add turmeric powder, rice flakes and roasted peanuts. Add spice mix as per taste.
  6. Allow to cool and store in air-tight container. Serve as a snack.
  • Preparation time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 10 minutes
  • Total time: 20 minutes


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