Monday, March 16, 2009

Celebration Cake

Hey All ....I am back with a new Cake this week. This one is a Fondant Cake decorated with Marbled Rolled fondant , all the decorations for the cake are made out of fondant too.

Prior to making this cake I have never tasted Fondant, so it was great new experience for me. In the class I learned to make White fondant from the scratch. Fondant was quite easy to make although rolling it for decoration was an entirely different case. While rolling, the fondant has the tendency to dry out, so I had to keep it covered all the time when not in use.

I used a combination of Peach and Fuschia color for decorating cake. The fondant base was made using peach color to give a marbled effect. I decorated the top by making small and large gift boxes using orange and fuschia colors.

The cake itself was a Italian Sponge cake, sandwiched with buttercream and lemon filling. I will post the recipe for the sponge cake in my coming posts.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Quick N Easy Sponge Cake

This is the great recipe for a 10 minutes foolproof cake. It is the perfect base for making any layered cake. The cake after baking turns out lightweight and golden brown in color.
I made this cake in two 9" cake pans for making a 4 layered cake. Make sure the eggs you use for this recipe are at room temperature, it really helps in making a cake nice and soft

The best part about this cake is it requires just 3 ingredients for it and being a sponge cake it is fat free.So you can have your cake and eat it too ;)


1 Cup Refined flour
1 Cup Sugar
6 Eggs


Preheat oven to 350 degree F.

Line two 9"cake pans with parchment paper.

Separate Eggs ,white portion in a large bowl ( as it will triple up in volume) and yellow portion into a small bowl.

Add 1/2 cup sugar into egg whites and beat till it increases in volume and becomes stiff ( peaks should stand up when a sponn is lifted)

Add leftover 1/2 cup sugar to yellow portion and beat till it becomes pale yellow in color.

Fold egg yolks into egg whites.

Fold in flour gently using 1/3 cup at a time. Do not overmix.

Pour batter into cake pans lined with parchment paper.
Bake at 350 degree F for about 30 minutes. Toothpick inserted in the cake centre should come out clean.
Let the cake stand in pan for 5 minutes, then remove from pan and remove waxpaper.
Cool the cake completely before frosting.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Punjabi Kadi

Kadi reminds me of Pure simple and delicious home food.Although I have tried many recipe of Kadi till yet,this one is the best. My Mum makes amazing Kadi and I learnt this recipe from her.I made a few modifications in the recipe and the results turned pretty good.

In this recipe I made Pakoras with a combination of chopped spinach,potato and onion mix,flavored with dry fenugreek(Kasoori methi). Pakoras were then simmered in ginger-garlic flavored creamy yogurt curry. Its the perfect recipe to treat yourself to when you are craving some delicious 'Ghar ka Khana'.

For Pakoras :
1 Cup Besan (Gram Flour)
1 Cup finely chopped spinach
1 medium Potato,finely chopped
1 medium Onion,finely chopped
1 tsp Kasoori Methi
1/4 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Red Chili powder
Salt, To taste
Oil, for frying

For the Kadi :
1 Cup Besan
2 Cups Sour Curd
1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder (Haldi)
1/2 tsp Red Chili Powder
Salt, to taste

For the Tempering (Tadka) :
2 Dry Red Chillies
1 tsp Mustard Seeds (Rai)
1/2 tsp red chili powder

Heat Oil in a heavy bottomed pan.

Mix well all ingredients of the Pakoras together with enough water to form a batter of medium consistency.It should not be too thick,nor too thick.

Drop spoonfuls of batter into hot oil to form pakoras.Fry them at medium heat till light golden in color.Keep aside in a plate.

In a bowl mix together Besan and Curd to form a smooth and lumpfree batter.

Heat oil in a pan. Add ginger-garlic paste and fry till light brown in color. Add Haldi and Red chilli pd.Add 3 cups water to it and let it come to a boil.

Add Besan - Curd mixture to above and stir constantly till it thickens and comes to a boil. After first boil, lower the heat, add fried pakoras and simmer on low flame for 15 minutes. Serve in a bowl.
For the tempering, heat 2 tbsp ghee in a pan add dry red chillies ,rai and heat till rai starts to crackle. Add red chilli powder pour it over the prepared Kadi.

Serve hot with steamed Rice or Chapati.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Black Forest Trifle Pudding

Who doesn't likes Puddings? The Ooey-gooey temptation of Puddings can lure anyone.They are the perfect dessert after a delightful meal.
Black forest cake though originally from Germany is now popular worldwide.It consists of layers of chocolate cake sandwiched with whipped cream & cherries. Anyways back to the pudding I made.

I made Black Forest Trifle pudding this time,which is a take on my all time favorite black forest cake.I made a quick-fix version of trifle pudding with use of Instant pudding mix and Jell-o(or any jelly mix) as normally trifle pudding is very time consuming.I had some leftover Chocolate cake which I used for it.
It consists of 3 alternating layers of pudding,chocolate cake and strawberry jelly( hence the name trifle).Topped with whipped cream,cherries and chocolate sprinkles ,its Heaven on Earth!!

Ingredients( Serves 6)

2 Cups chocolate Cake,chopped into small pieces

1 Pack instant Vanilla Pudding (~2 Cups Custard)

1 Pack Strawberry Jello (~2 Cups Set jelly)

2 Cups Fresh Cream

1/2 Cup powdered sugar

1/4 Cup chopped Walnuts

3-4 Cherries for garnishing
3 tbsp cherry syrup ( from cherries in can)

Chocolate sprinkles or Chocolate curls for garnishing


Make Strawberry jelly according to instructions given in the package and keep it in fridge to set.

Make vanilla pudding according to instructions given on the package.It will make about 2 cups of pudding.Keep it to chill in fridge.

Chop chocolate cake into small pieces and keep aside.

Whip the fresh cream with sugar till soft peaks are formed.Keep it to chill in fridge.

When all the ingredients are chilled for about 1-2 hours,we can start assembling the pudding.

In chilled pudding, fold in half of the whipped cream and stir softly to mix well.Keep rest of the whipped cream for topping aside.

Crumble set jelly roughly with a fork so that small bits of jelly are formed.

Take a wide pudding bowl, preferably of glass so that all pudding layers are visible or you can also take stemmed glasses for individual servings.

In the bowl, put 1/3rd of the pudding mix at the bottom.Put chocolate cake pieces over pudding.Lightly spritz cake pieces with cherry syrup. Sprinkle chopped walnuts over it and finally put jelly bits over it all.

Repeat the layers 2 more times till all the cake,pudding and jelly is used.

Top the pudding generously with leftover whipped cream.You can use back of the spoon to form peak effect.

Sprinkle chocolate vermicelli or curls over it and arrange cherries on top.

Chill for at least 2 hours before consuming for the best taste.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Garlic Bread

Well guys...this time I tried to make Garlic Bread from scratch.I baked my own bread and then made garlic bread out of it.

The heavenly aroma of freshly baked bread is so stimulating that I can hardly stop myself slicing the loaf even before it got cooled.Baking bread may seem like a daunting task but trust me I am no professional baker.If I can do it so can you!Although the process of fermentation may seem like a bit long but its totally worth it.
The dough I used for making this bread is multipurpose.It can be shaped into long and skinny baguette,crusty oblong Italian loaf.Your imagination is your limit...

Ingredients(makes 2 loaves)

4 Cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp active dry yeast
1+3/4 cup lukewarm water
1/2 tsp salt
cornmeal for sprinkling


In a bowl mix yeast with 1/4 cup of warm water and let it stand for 5 minutes till bubbles appear on surface.

Stir in 1 cup warm water and slowly add 2 cups of flour to form a wet spongy dough.Cover with plastic wrap and set aside to ferment at room temperature for 8-12 hours.The dough will triple in volume.

After 8-12 hours add remaining 1/2 cup warm water,salt and 2 more cups of flour to form soft dough.

On the work surface knead dough for 7-10 minutes sprinkling as little flour as needed to prevent dough from sticking.Dough will become smooth,moist but will remain still sticky to touch.

Transfer dough to bowl and set aside for 2 hours.

Divide dough into 2 halves and shape into oblong loaf about 10X3 inches.Place loaves on parchment covered baking sheet,cover loosely with wet towel and set aside at room temperature for 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 425 degree F.
Sprinkle dough with water and bake for 30-35 minutes.The loaves will become hollow sounding when tapped on bottom and golden brown in color.

Place the bread on wire rack to cool.

Note: I used this loaf for making delicious garlic bread in another recipe

Garlic Bread

To me any Italian meals seem incomplete without Garlic bread.Whenever I go to Italian Restaurant,I eagerly anticipate the warm,delicious bread basket before meal.Garlic bread is pretty easy to make at home too.

Almost any bread can be used to make garlic bread,I particularly like Italian loaf or sourdough bread for it.
The variations of toppings one can do while making garlic bread are limitless. Some variations can be:
  • Sun dried tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese and basil leaves
  • Mixture of provolone,sharp cheddar and mozzarella cheese
  • Shredded spinach and feta cheese
  • Mushrooms,corn kernels and red pepper with a spritz of olive oil


1 Medium loaf - Italian bread or any bread of your choice

6 tbsp salted butter(at room temperature)

3 tbsp garlic paste

1 tsp dry Italian herbs

A pinch of red chili flakes


Preheat oven to 450 degree F.

Cut bread loaf at a slant into medium thickness slices In a bowl mix softened butter,dry herbs,garlic paste and chili flakes.

With a blunt knife apply butter mixture onto upper surface of bread slices.

Place bread slices into a baking sheet and bake for about 5-7 minutes till bread crisps up and gets slightly brown on top.(If topping with cheese,bake till cheese melts).

Serve hot with your favorite pasta or pizza or just relish it alone.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Pad Thai Noodles

Thai food is a wonderful combination of sweet,spicy and sour flavors.It is literally bursting with all the delicious flavors and a treat for your taste buds.My passion for Thai food started about 2 years back when I first tried hot Red Thai curry and I am in love with Thai cuisine ever since.

Last weekend I was craving something hot and spicy and thought of making Pad Thai noodles.I used Rice Noodles for making this dish ,also known as 'Rice Sticks'.The noodles are steamed in hot water for 5 minutes and then stir fried with flavorful pad Thai sauce.I added marinated tofu to noodles which can be substituted with Paneer(Cottage Cheese) if you wish.

Ingredients(Serves 3-4)
8 oz Rice Noodles (approx 225 gm)
100 g Tofu/Paneer
2 eggs,lightly beaten
1 medium onion ,finely chopped
1 medium carrot,finely grated
2 tbsp Garlic Paste
3 tbsp groundnuts
2 tsp chopped green coriander leaves(cilantro)
Oil,for stir frying
Salt,to taste
For Pad Thai Sauce:
1 tbsp Tamarind paste
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp Brown sugar
2 tsp red chili sauce(can be substituted with 1 tsp red chili powder in absence of red chili sauce)


Mix all the ingredients of pad Thai sauce in a bowl and microwave for 30 seconds.The sauce should have more of a sweet and spicy taste.
Cut tofu into long strips and marinate in pad Thai sauce for about 30 minutes.
Soak Rice Noodles in a bowl of hot water for 6- 10 minutes.Drain and rinse with cold water.
Heat oil in a pan and roast groundnuts on medium heat till golden brown,set aside.Take care not to burn them.
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a non stick pan.Take tofu pieces out of marinade and sear them in hot pan,cook till golden brown on both sides.Set aside.

Add 2 tbsp oil to same pan and cook garlic paste till it gets light brown.Add chopped onion and cook till it becomes transparent,add grated carrot to it and cook for 2 min on high flame.

Add 2 lightly beaten eggs(if using) to onion mixture above and cook till they are lightly scrambled for 1-2 minutes.
Add drained noodles to the pan mix in the remaining pad Thai sauce carefully using 2 spatulas(like you toss salad).Stir fry for about 2-3 minutes on high flame till evenly mixed.
Add cooked tofu pieces to noodles,mix.Check salt.
Serve hot garnished with roasted groundnuts and finely chopped coriander leaves.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Rose Bouquet cake

This was the second cake I made in my class.I was a bit skeptical about making roses as I thought they are very hard to make after my instructor demonstrated it.But as it turned out they were quite a fun to make and not hard at all!

So for this I baked two 8" yellow cakes and frosted them with butter cream.I cooled the cake in fridge for about an hour and meanwhile I made roses with pink colored butter cream .The edges of the cake are decorated to give a beautiful basket weave effect and a shell border is piped at the bottom.I transferred the roses onto the round edges of the cake and then piped out leaves with the help of green colored butter cream.In the centre I piped out the message"Best Wishes" with pink colored icing too.

Next I am trying out Fondant cake...will post the pic when I make it.