Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear

Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear

I am here with the Amaranth Chocolate Cake recipe which I promised in last week’s post.

Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear
Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear

Lately I have been seeing a lot of Gluten Free recipes using Amaranth Flour. Though we have no medical reason to follow a gluten or whole grain diet but V has started avoiding Refined (All purpose) flour with a vengeance.

Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear
Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear

He would eat also and then crib for feeling sleepy & not fresh due to eating refined flour.

Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear
Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear

So I have slowly started moving towards whole grain including Whole Wheat & Amaranth especially in Baking.

Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear
Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear

I must say it was my first trial at using Amaranth & I loved it. I would be incorporating more of it in my baking now.

Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear
Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with Spiced Pear

The taste was rich, soft & just perfect sweetness. I reduced the sugar to 3/4 cup as we prefer less sweet and I was going to top it with spiced pear in white wine.

Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with SPiced Pear

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 5 inch cake

Serving Size: serves 2

Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake Topped with SPiced Pear

Perfect cake for 2 with healthy ingredients. It is for those days when you crave indulgence in moderation.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of whole wheat flour
  • ½ cup of amaranth flour
  • ¼ cup of cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/2 cup of milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/3 cup of oil
  • 1 cup of coffee concoction (1 cup boiled water + ½ tablespoon coffee powder)
  • 3/4 cup of castor Sugar (powdered sugar)
  • 1 tablespoon of vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven at 180 degree C. Grease & line a 5 inch mould.
  2. In a bowl sift all the dry ingredients except sugar.
  3. In another bowl mix all the wet ingredients along with sugar. Now fold dry ingredients into the wet. Pour this mixture into a greased tin and bake for 25 to 30 minutes.
  4. Let it cool down at room temperature.
  5. At the time of serving, top with spiced pears & sauce.

Notes:

minimally adapted from Baking Flavours

You can use 1 cup sugar for a sweeter cake

http://lemoninginger.com/2014/09/01/eggless-amaranth-chocolate-cake-topped-spiced-pear/

Sending this cake to Bake Fest # 35, an event originally started by Vardhini

Spiced Pears In White Wine

Spiced Pears In White Wine

Ever since I started blogging, it has been my heart-felt desire to cook with wine.

Spiced Pears In White Wine
Spiced Pears In White Wine

Especially since I see a lot many images of poached pear in red wine.

Spiced Pears in White Wine
Spiced Pears in White Wine

Ummmm… drool worthy!!

V has this thing about baking with fruits. He prefers to eat fruits raw than have them cooked or baked.

Spiced Pears In White Wine
Spiced Pears In White Wine

So every time I dream of baking with seasonal fruits, he comes with his proverbial ‘Virgo’ pin & burst my dream.

Spiced Pears In White Wine
Spiced Pears In White Wine

Finally I managed to ignore his ‘raised eyebrows’ and ‘long sighs’ and got him to bring me a bottle of white wine, along with a bounty of fresh pears.

Spiced Pears in White Wine
Spiced Pears in White Wine

Ta da! I cooked with wine for the first time & oh, I loved it.

Spiced Pears In White Wine
Spiced Pears In White Wine

Apart from enjoying these spiced pears as an after dinner dessert, I used them as topping for Eggless Amaranth Chocolate Cake.

Spiced Pears In White Wine
Spiced Pears In White Wine

A must-try for all chefs/ cooks. My new love – cooking with wine.

Spiced Pears In White Wine
Spiced Pears In White Wine

Spiced Pears In White Wine

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Serving Size: serves 2

Spiced Pears In White Wine

A healthy & tasty wine cooked spiced pear recipe. It is simple and easy to make too.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups sweet white wine
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 medium beet, peeled and sliced
  • 4 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 2-3 whole cloves
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 firm pears, peeled, cored, and cut into 8 pieces lengthwise

Instructions

  1. In a thick bottom pan, bring wine, sugar, beet, ginger, peppercorns, cloves, and cinnamon sticks to boil.
  2. Reduce heat to low and add pears. Cover with lid. Simmer until pears are tender, about 45 minutes.
  3. Remove pan from heat. Using a slotted spoon, transfer pears to a large bowl, picking off any cloves or peppercorns. Strain the syrup into a separate bowl and discard beets and spices.
  4. Return strained syrup to saucepan and boil over medium-high heat until reduced to 1 1/2 cups, about 20 minutes. Pour syrup over pears and cool completely, 1 to 2 hours.

Notes:

minimally adapted from Serious Eats

I would love to try this for other fruits too. It is fairly simple to replace pear with a fruit like apple & adjust sugar & cooking time accordingly.

Pears can be made in advance & stored in air-tight container in refrigerator.

Beetroot adds the rich, fiery colour.

http://lemoninginger.com/2014/08/29/spiced-pears-white-wine/

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

2 weeks ago I announced the #MobileFoodPhotography Workshop being organised in Pune. Finally the D-day arrived and with it, the workshop.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

Before I give you details about the workshop, the weeks preceding it were hectic and full of plans, micro-managing the event. It taught me new things like getting on board a host, partners, creatives and what not.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

I also learned about approaching the media/ press coverage. I am so glad that I took up this workshop. The experience provided me a new high.IMG_2846

I was thrilled when the workshop found listing in Pune Mirror. For me it was an achievement.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

On the event day, I was running post to pillar to have the house organized before I leave, then conducted a 6 hour lecture for 50 students at fashion college in the city. From the college headed straight to Seasons Mall.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
I am Superimposed

This was my first visit to Wtf, so quite enjoyed the decor. It was very hip, colourful, disjointed & yet cohesive interiors. Very suited to the place.

I spent good 40-45 minutes capturing the place to the best of my capabilities.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

The staff was courteous and very attentive. Special mention to Richard and his team.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

Once the team & the participants assembled, Soham took every one along & described how one can achieve best result using the smart phone.

He discussed apps which would make it easy to post process, composition, story, human element in an image. He also observed that a close-up of the dish (or plate crop) without the edges of the platter showing is a no-no.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

He also touched upon how to blur the background before start taking picture since using #nofilter ups the credibility of a photographer on social media. What is Rule of Third & how best to apply it.

Post the brief discussion by Soham, dishes were placed on the table and participants needed no further encouragement to start clicking and applying what they had just learned.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

It was a very successful hands-on session where each & everyone got a chance to review & discuss with Soham.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

Overall a very informative, highly content and quality oriented session. The only drawback was

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

But all of this would not have been possible without the support of co-organizer FBAI, Media Partners – Pune Instagrammers, Host – Wtf, Seasons Mall and our instructor Soham Sabnis.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

Each one deserves stupendous applause for the sheer effort in pulling this through.

#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune
#MobileFoodPhotography Workshop at Wtf Seasons Mall #Pune

Malai Kulfi | Revisiting Through The Lens Series - 10

Malai Kulfi | Revisiting Through The Lens Series – 10

This is a must have, must make and must treat others recipe. It is a sure shot winner every time I have made it.

If you are an Indian and have grown up to the rich, creamy street kulfi then you are going to love this.

Malai Kulfi | Revisiting Through The Lens Series - 10
Malai Kulfi | Revisiting Through The Lens Series – 10

It will take you back down the memory lane. Yes it is that.

‘The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.’ – Dorothea Lange

Malai Kulfi | Revisiting Through The Lens Series - 10
Malai Kulfi | Revisiting Through The Lens Series – 10

I have already made & posted this recipe 3 years ago but as part of my food photography journey, I share some of my re-done shots of old recipes.

Malai Kulfi | Revisiting Through The Lens Series - 10
Malai Kulfi | Revisiting Through The Lens Series – 10

I recently came across bloggers who were simply re placing their old images with new ones. I would not do that ‘cause it would feel cheating to me.

I would rather take you through my growth the way I am doing.

Malai Kulfi | Revisiting Through The Lens Series - 10
Malai Kulfi | Revisiting Through The Lens Series – 10

Check my other old recipes with new photographs in Revisiting Through The Lens Series.

Malai Kulfi _ revisiting Through The Lens Series – 10

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 12 cones

Malai Kulfi _ revisiting Through The Lens Series – 10

An easy to make and serve the traditional kulfi without waiting for that vendor. It is really rich & creamy.

Ingredients

  • 2 liter of Full Cream Milk
  • 1 can (400g) of Condensed Milk
  • 4 tablespoon of Coarsely Ground Cashew
  • 1 teaspoon of Cardamom Powder
  • Chopped Pistachios & almonds slivers for topping

Instructions

  1. In a thick bottom vessel, reduce the milk to half the quantity on a slow flame.
  2. When it is reduced, add condensed milk & heat for another minute or so. Allow it to cool.
  3. When cool, add cashew & cardamom powder. Blend well with a whisk.
  4. Pour into moulds or ice-cream tins for setting.
  5. Set in freezer overnight.
  6. De-mould & serve chilled. Garnish using chopped pistachio.

Notes:

You can use this recipe to create many flavours. I intend to make mango and kesar kulfi soon with this.

http://lemoninginger.com/2014/08/25/malai-kulfi-_-revisiting-lens-series-10/

Eggless Chocolate Ice Cream without Ice Cream Maker

Eggless Chocolate Ice Cream without Ice Cream Maker

Summers came and are already gone here in Pune.

Eggless Chocolate Ice Cream without Ice Cream Maker
Eggless Chocolate Ice Cream without Ice Cream Maker

Who says? I say. A mother, who has been tending to sick kids for last 1 week for sore throat, fever and cold, wrapping them in blankets, sweaters and jackets as they shiver in cold. I CAN say that summers are gone and so are the days of eating scoops of ice cream.

Eggless Chocolate Ice Cream without Ice Cream Maker
Eggless Chocolate Ice Cream without Ice Cream Maker

But not before I made this last batch of Chocolate Ice Cream. Regular readers would know that I have hardly 2-3 recipes of ice cream on LiG, the primary reason being that it is so difficult to get no-crystals consistency.

Eggless Chocolate Ice Cream without Ice Cream Maker
Eggless Chocolate Ice Cream without Ice Cream Maker

But lately I have discovered the joy of making ice cream without the ice crystals and made Banana Ice Cream too a while ago.

The verdict – V said this is if not better than at par with the store bought ice cream. I am happy being at par. :)

Eggless Chocolate Ice Cream without Ice Cream Maker

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 1/2 kg

Serving Size: 3-4 people

Eggless Chocolate Ice Cream without Ice Cream Maker

A rich chocolate ice cream at home without the fancy ice cream maker.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ cup of sugar, granulated
  • ¼ cup of brown sugar, firmly packed
  • ¾ cup of full cream milk
  • 1 ½ cup of Amul cream
  • 1 ½ tsp of vanilla extract
  • A pinch of salt
  • 2 tbsp of choco-chips (optional)

Instructions

  1. Whisk together cocoa powder and both sugars till combined well.
  2. Add milk to the cocoa mixture, and again mix well for about 2-3 minutes by hand or 30 secs by hand-held mixer.
  3. Add in cream, vanilla extract and salt. Mix till combined.
  4. Pour this mixture into your mixer jar and churn it for 10-15 minutes. The resulting mixture should resemble like a soft serve ice-cream.
  5. Transfer the mixture into a ice-cream container, or a pyrex dish with a lid or any air-tight container suitable for freezing.
  6. After 3-4 hours, remove from freezer and thaw for about a minute or two and then again churn the ice-cream. Pour it back into the container and freeze again. Repeat this after another 3-4 hours. Pour the mixture into the container and mix-in choco chips. Allow it to set finally overnight.
  7. Serve chilled.

Notes:

minimally adapted from Edible Garden

Use cream with at least 35% fat content. In India only Amul cream of 28% fat content is easily available, so that is used but if you have access to higher fat content cream, please use that.

Using higher fat content cream will give firmer and richer ice-cream.

Add choco-chips in the end when you have finished repeated churnings and are ready to allow it to set for final time.

Repeated churning allows to remove any ice-crystals, leaving a smooth and perfect ice-cream

If you have an ice-cream maker, please move the mixture (step 4) into the ice-cream maker and churn for 20 minutes. And just set it one time in a pyrex dish. No need for repeated churning.

http://lemoninginger.com/2014/08/22/eggless-chocolate-ice-cream-without-ice-cream-maker/