July 7, 2011

Perfect Pound Cake

My husband who is not a big fan of sweets as I am, loves pound cakes. In fact, when I had started baking frequently few months back, it was the only thing he requested me to make. It was a big surprise as in matters of cakes, he only eats to taste it. So when the Sweet Punch for July was announced to make Perfect Pound Cakes, I was excited . It is my first bake as a Sweet Punch participant.
The term Pound cake was coined as it was traditionally made of one pound each of the 4 ingredients, flour,eggs,butter and sugar . However the recipe that the Sweet Punch chose was a different method. The recipe is from Cake Bible.  It is called Perfect Pound Cake and indeed it is perfect and addictive.  

 I have done a slight modification to the recipe. I added some lemon zest and "tried" to make a white chocolate and lemon glaze. "Tried" as I burnt half of whatever little white chocolate I had. 

3 tbsp Milk
3 large Eggs
1 and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
and 1/2 cups cake flour (150gm) 
3/4cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
 zest of 1 lemon

1/4 teaspoon salt
13 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (184 gms)


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 F/175C. 
  2. Butter an 8 inch by 4 by 2.5 inch loaf pan, or any six cup loaf or fluted tube pan.  
  3. Lightly whisk together milk, eggs and vanilla in a medium bowl.
  4. Place dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix on low speed for 30 seconds, until blended. 
  5. Add the butter , lemon zest and half the egg mixture, and mix until dry ingredients are moistened. On medium speed, beat for one minute. This will aerate and develop the cake’s structure. Scrape down sides.
  6. Add the remaining egg mixture in two batches, beating for 20 seconds between each addition. Scrape down sides.
  7. Pour batter into prepared pan. Smooth surface with a spatula. 
  8. Bake for 55-65 minutes (35-45 minutes if baking in a fluted tube pan), until a wooden toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cake cool on a rack in the pan for 10 minuets before inverting onto a greased wire rack. If using a loaf pan, flip the cake over so the top is up.
For making cake flour at home - Take one cup of all purpose flour and remove 2 tbsp from it.Replace the 2 tbsp flour with cornflour and sift together 2-3 times. Cake flour is ready to use.

July 3, 2011

Cups of Sunshine - Chocolate and Carrots

You can not only lick these cups but EAT it too as it is made of chocolate

What should I say about this !! This is as delicious as it looks. I have been wanting to make chocolate cups for sometime but didn't want to fill it with usual icecream or fruits filling. I thought why not to Indianise it and serve it with something Indian. So here it is , a fusion of the great Indian Carrot dessert  gajar halwa and chocolates.I had the visual in mind , which looked very very attractive and thankfully it tasted extremely delicious too.
I had very less amount of chocolates in my pantry, so the cups were thinner. It had to be eaten immediately as the chocolate would melt very soon. So, I suggest in the recipe below to have a thicker cup.


[for 4-5]
For Chocolate Cups
1 cup Dark semisweet chocolate,chopped
Cupcake liners
For Carrot Stuffing
2 cups Carrot, grated
2 cups Milk
1/4 cup Sugar
a pinch Cardamom powder
7-8 Cashewnuts, halved
6-10 Raisins [optional]
1 tbsp Clarified butter/ghee
For Chocolate Cups
  1. Line the cupcake pan with cupcake liners. If you are using thin liners use 3 liners for each to have a thicker base.
  2. Melt chocolate in top of double boiler over simmering water, stirring until smooth.  
  3. Spoon 1 tablespoon of melted chocolate into each paper liner. Brush the inside of the cupcake liners to coat evenly. Freeze until chocolate firms for about 30 minutes. 
  4. Melt the leftover chocolate again and reapply a second coat using the same method  Freeze until completely set, about 1 hour. 
  5. Once set, peel the cupcake liners.Whenever you feel that chocolate is melting, refreeze it. It can be made a day in advance and needs to be refrigerated covered.
 For Carrot Stuffing 
  1. Boil milk in a pan till it reduces to almost half. Keep stirring often so that it doesn't burn at the bottom of the pan.Keep aside. 
  2. Heat ghee in a separate pan. Roast the cashew and raisin in it and take it out and keep aside. Add grated carrots to the ghee and stir fry for 7-8 minutes. 
  3. Add milk and cook until the milk dries. When all the milk is soaked up, add sugar and cardamom powder. This will release some moisture. Cook till it dries up completely. Add raisins and cashewnuts.  Take out and when it cools, refrigerate it covered.
Once the carrot stuffing cools, Fill the chocolate cups with it in form of heaps. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

Sending this to the "Veggie/Fruit of the Month - Carrot" Event by Priya and Revathi

July 2, 2011

Homemade Tortilla Chips from Scratch

Tortillas are Mexican Flatbread, made out of maize flour /Cornmeal[makai ka aata] . Maize flour should not be confused with cornflour[corn starch]. Tortilla chips are made by deep frying or baking the tortillas. This was first time for me in making or eating them, so deep frying appealed to me more. I loved them and am surely going to snack on them again, so would try the healthier bake option from next time.
I was looking for a recipe which was from scratch and I found it at Tarla Dalal. I have modified the recipe to add some additional herbs and spices for more flavour.

1 and 1/4 cups maize flour
3/4 cups all purpose flour
4 tsp oil
1/2 cumin seeds [optional]
1 tsp red chilli flakes
1 and 1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp dried thyme
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

  1. Mix all the ingredients together and knead a  soft dough by adding warm water.
  2. Divide the dough into small lemon size portions. 
  3. Roll out each portion thinly  to a round shape. Dust with flour as you roll them . Prick all over with a fork. If it is uneven, trim the ends.
  4. Cook lightly on  both sides on a  hot griddle. Repeat with the rest of the dough.  
  5. Cut into small triangles and deep fry in oil until crisp. Drain on absorbent paper.
  6. Store in an air-tight container. 
  7. Serve with salsa or dips.
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