Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Cremelle ~ Instant Caramel Custard-Product review

Do you like Caramel Custard?I used to love it but these days cannot eat it to my heart's content  because of the strong eggy smell,seems like my taste buds have changed over time.I searched a lot for eggless Caramel custard recipes but I was told the texture of the custard is difficult to achieve if no eggs are added.I came across this instant Custard mix which gives a perfect result,without eggs.

Cremelle is a product by Weikfield and is an instant Caramel Custard mix.While the traditional custard recipe requires a mixing-steaming-cooling process and the caramel part,this one gets done in less than 10 minutes from start to finish.
Cremelle comes with an Instant mix Custard powder and a ready-made Caramel syrup which you just need to pour into one big bowl or 4-5 small ramekins or dessert bowls.Boil 500ml milk with the custard powder mix provided till the milk boils.Cook for another minute stirring continuously and then switch off the flame.Let it cool for another 5 minutes and then pour into the bowl/bowls into which the caramel syrup has been poured.Keep in the fridge to cool and then invert and serve.
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Only disadvantage I find with this is the Caramel part.First thing,it is not enough for 4-5 bowls,since I like the custard to be in caramel syrup and not just a caramel coating.Sometimes,the caramel has a faint smell and is a deep black color.Times when I am in a good mood,I prepare caramel myself and use only the custard part,which gives me Golden colored caramel and the custard looks [and tastes] great!

I've been using this to make Caramel Custard for years now and love it that each and every time I get the same taste and texture,but without the egg smell[and the eggs!]

Disclaimer-Cremelle has not paid me for this review.I've been using this product for some time now and just thought I'd share this with you!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Mango Buttermilk Pound Cake


Some recipes are contagious,the moment you see it on someone's blog,you try it out immediately.Someone else sees the recipe and tries it out too successfully and the story continues.Of course,if the source of the recipe is  foolproof then it is no wonder that the recipe gets all the due attention it deserves.

The recipe mentioned here is Deeba's Lime Buttermilk Pound cake.No sooner than the recipe became a rage,she came up with a Chocolate version.Few days back,Swapna and Finla made a Passion Fruit Buttermilk Pound cake and here I have tried a Mango version,says a LOT about the recipe now,doesn't it?


Tried and Tasted is an event started by Zlamushka,now taken over by Lakshmi and is hosted at Samayal Arai this month and it features Passionate About Baking as the blog of the month.One who never misses a post from Deeba's blog,how could I not take part in this event?

So armed with Deeba's foolproof recipe and some Mango Pulp,I set about making this Cake and thus was born this Mango Pound Cake!The cake by itself is moist and the addition of mango pulp made it more so.As with most Fruit bakes,the cake tasted better the next day.Thank you Deeba for this priceless recipe!!

Mango Buttermilk Pound Cake


Plain flour - 1½  cups
Baking powder - ½ tsp
Baking soda -  ¼ tsp
Salt - ½ tsp
Ground Ginger - 1 tsp
Unsalted butter, room temperature -  ½ cup
Vanilla or plain sugar - 1 cup
Eggs - 2
Buttermilk {or substitute recipe below}- 100 ml
Pure vanilla extract - 1 tsp

Mango Pulp - 1/3 cup [5-6 tbsp]
Zest of 1 lime

To make buttermilk substitute at home

Take 100ml milk at room temp; add 1 tsp white vinegar. Let it stand 5-10 minutes. When it curdles, it's ready.


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Grease and flour the sides of a 8" ring tin, or a 6" round tin. [I used a 6 cup Bundt pan].Grease the pan well with butter.
Preheat the oven to 170C.
Sift the flour with the baking powder, baking soda,salt and ground ginger. Reserve.

Mix together the zest with sugar and blend it with your finger tips till the sugar becomes moist and fragrant.

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Cream the butter and sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time, followed by the vanilla extract.
With beater on low add the flour and buttermilk alternately in three lots.

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Blend in the Mango pulp and fold in using a spatula.
Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for 50-60 minutes till golden brown on top, and the tester comes out clean.[It took 50 minutes in my oven].

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Cool in the pan for 5 minutes and then keep the pan on a wire rack.When it becomes cool to the touch,invert the cake to another cooling rack and let it cool completely before pouring the sauce.

Mango Cream Sauce
Recipe adapted from Asha

Mango Pulp - 1 cup
Powdered sugar - 3 tbsp
Cream - 3 tbsp

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Mix everything together till the sauce becomes pouring consistency.Keep refrigerated till use.


  • Wait for the cake to cool completely before cutting to get neat slices.Use a serrated knife and using a sawing motion cut the cake.
  • The sauce can be poured on top of the cake or you could serve the cake with sauce on the side.
  • Ground ginger adds a different punch to the cake,skip it if you are serving the cake to kids.You can use cardamom instead.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Anjum Anand's Lime Cookies

When in doubt bake cookies,yeah.Does not take too much of your time/effort and satisfies your baking itch too.Most importantly,gets done in a jiffy.That's what attracts me most to a cookie.I mean,it is only a matter of few minutes when you can get everything done and get set for a cup of coffee with your just-baked cookies,isn't that wonderful?

I've seen this recipe on a lot of blogs and remember writing down the recipe long time back.While I was going through the recipe,I realized it is quite similar to the Cinnamon cookie,only the flavor is different.Without further ado,let me present a very simple[and basic]cookie recipe which can be experimented upon for different flavors.So which one are you gonna try?

Anjum Anand's Lime Cookies


Flour – ½ cup
Castor sugar – ¼ cup
Softened butter – ¼ cup
Lemon zest – ½ tsp
Juice of ½ a lemon
Almond flakes for garnishing


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Mix together the zest and powdered sugar with your finger tips till the sugar becomes moist and fragrant. 
Mix all the ingredients to a smooth dough and keep aside for 20 minutes.

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Roll the dough into ¼ inch thickness and cut into desired shapes-OR shape them into small balls and flatten them a little between your palms.
Press an almond sliver on top.
Place the cookies on a lightly greased cookie tray.
Bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 15 minutes.
Cool on a wire rack.


  • The cookies spread out while baking so make sure you keep a good one inch distance between each cookie.
  • The lime flavor is not a dominating one,in fact there is a very faint taste of lime which gets even better the next day.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Palak & Vegetables Ambat - Spinach & Vegetables in Coconut based Curry


Sometimes cooking for daily meals comes naturally to me.I have a glance inside my fridge and within 30 minutes,I am done cooking lunch.But sometimes,even cooking Dal seems like such a great effort.Times like these,I prepare one-pot meals or if I am even lazier,curd rice.

Last week,with my fridge loaded with fresh veggies and cleaned and chopped Palak leaves,I decided to make this ambat.Ma-in-law made this when we went to Bangalore and despite being the greens-disliker in the family,I relished the curry.Tastes great with rice and a simple upkari.

Ambat is a coconut based curry with a roasted onions garnish.


Palak and Vegetables Ambat


Palak leaves - a bunch,cleaned and roughly chopped
Toor dal - 1/3 cup
Onion - 1,cubed
Drumsticks - 2,chopped into 2' pieces
Carrots - 2,cubed
Cauliflower - 5-6 florets,chopped into halves
Salt to taste

Grind to a smooth paste

Freshly grated coconut - 1/2 cup
Byadgi red chillies - 6[if using normal red chillies use 3]
Tamarind - a small piece

For seasoning

Oil - 1 tbsp
Onions - 2 medium,chopped finely


Pressure cook the toor dal,palak leaves and onion together for 3-4 whistles.
Once cool,open the cooker and mix everything together.Add the drumstick and carrots and cook till soft.
Add the cauliflower florets and cook till tender.
Mix in the ground masala and salt to taste and let the curry come to a boil.
Simmer and cook for another 5 minutes.
In another pan add oil and roast the onions till dark brown.
Add it to the boiling curry,switch off the flame.
Serve hot with Rice.

How did we like it - Despite being not very fond of greens,both of us relished the ambat.The flavor of Palak is not very dominating and I think that is the highlight of this simple curry.


  • You can skip the palak leaves and make the ambat with mixed vegetables,which would taste as fine.But believe me,you cannot taste Palak in this ambat!
  • If you are a palak leaves fan,you can skip the vegetables and make this only with Palak..so there!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Fresh Mango Loaf Cake


Chennai is getting scorched under the blazing sun with temperatures soaring to 40+ and all we can do is sit and sigh.Add to it a daily dose of power cuts and it completes a fairy tale story[not!].I'd been spending less and less time in the kitchen thanks to this.Meanwhile,baking too had taken a sudden break what with the scarcity of butter and then my oven going kaput.The broadband ouster completed the misery.

Now that everything's back on track,I am all set.More so because Ajay set me up a small music corner in the kitchen to keep me occupied while I cooked/baked with strict instructions to keep both the phones within hearing distance.He only knows too well that I tend to get carried away into a different world while I am listening to my favorite tracks!!


Since Mangoes are available in abundance this time of the year,I decided to bake with it.I have become a great fan of fruits in baking and took the plunge by tweaking this recipe of a Simple Loaf Cake by Dorie Greenspan.Dorie is someone whom I consider my Baking guru.Read through her recipes in BFMHTY and you'll agree with me.

The recipe by itself is a very simple one.The name says it all.It can be baked as a simple loaf cake or can be pepped up with fruit purees[like I did] or it can be used as a base for Trifle puddings etc,the choices are numerous.


Fresh Mango Loaf Cake
Recipe source - Dorie Greenspan


All purpose flour - 1 ½ cups*
Baking powder - 2 tsp
Salt - ¼ tsp
Eggs - 3 large**
Sugar - 1 cup
Fresh Mango chopped - ½ cup
Sour cream - ½ cup [I substituted it with yogurt]
Vanilla extract - 2 tsp
Oil - ½ cup
Almond slivers for garnish


Preheat the oven to 350ºF /175 C and generously butter an 8x4x2–inch loaf pan (6-cup capacity)***. 

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In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
Blend together mango cubes and sour cream/yogurt to a smooth paste.The said amount would yield approximately ¾ cups of puree or maybe a little more.
Whisk the eggs, sugar,yogurt-mango puree, and vanilla together until well blended.
Add the dry ingredients and stir until smooth. Finally, pour in the oil and use the whisk to gently but thoroughly fold it into the batter.

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Put the batter in the loaf pan,sprinkle Almond slivers on top and bake 50 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. 
Cool on a rack for 5 minutes, then unmold and cool to room temperature right-side up.


  • *I added ¼ cup of whole wheat flour along with all purpose flour,so the amount used is 1¼ cups APF and ¼ cup whole wheat flour.
  • **Since I used Mango puree along with Yogurt,I reduced the number of eggs from 3 to 2.So in place of the substituted egg,I added ¼ cup of yogurt-mango puree.
  • ***I used a small loaf pan[7/3'] and baked the rest of the batter in mini loaf pans.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Eggless Golden Yellow Cake


At times,I am hooked to the internet so much so that I postpone everything else and sit glued to my laptop.As an afterthought,I take a self proclaimed break from my blog,facebook etc.I auto-publish the posts so that I am not tempted to open the laptop and tell myself ’its for the blog’!!

But when the broadband decided to take a break,I realized how much I was hooked into it.Our landline and the broadband connection went dead some time back and didn’t show a comeback until today.I kept calling the customer care the first few days and then it kind of settled in.My books were out and so were my acrylic paints.There was life beyond internet after all.


Whatever said and done,the moment the connection was back,I logged in and am posting this cake.I have so much to share and so much to catch up on.But for now,let me present this delicious Eggless cake I tried sometime back from Anushruti’s blog.I dressed it up a bit using some glazed cherries.Perfect as a tea-cake.


Eggless Golden Yellow Cake
Recipe adapted from Divine Taste


Milk – 1 cup
Sugar – ¾ cup [170 gms]
Flour – 1 ½ cups [210 gms]
Vanilla custard powder – ½ cup [65 gms]
Baking powder – 2 tsp
Baking soda – ¼ tsp
Vanilla extract – 1 tsp
Butter – ½ cup [100 gms]
Glaced cherries – 50 gms


Preheat oven to 160C/325F.
Grease and line a 7’ round cake tin.[I used a 6 cup Bundt pan]

In a saucepan,heat the milk. Stir in the sugar and after it melts completely set it aside to cool to room temperature. After the milk reaches room temperature, add the custard powder and mix well with a whisk. Put in the butter and mix again.

Prepare the cherries – wash the glaced cherries in a strainer under running water and wipe them dry.Take a tbsp flour from the measured flour and mix well with the cherries.Keep aside.

In a large mixing bowl, assemble the flour, baking powder, baking soda and mix with a whisk. Pour in the prepared milk mixture and mix well with a whisk until there are no lumps. Alternatively use an electric hand mixer/beater.Fold in the cherries.

Pour the prepared batter into the greased cake tin and bake for 55-60 minutes minutes or till a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.


  • As you can make out,my cake was a bit on the dry side because I slightly over baked it.Though it didn't affect the taste in any way,I am sure it would have been great if the cake was moist and not dry.So keep a close tab on the cake while it is baking.
  • Like many of you pointed out,this cake is very similar to Eggless Custard powder Snack Cake.But different too.The latter has a more pronounced Custard powder flavor while this cake has a very faint one.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Badam-Carrot Milk

Circa 2002.
Every weekend,we had a regular routine.By evening,we'd start from home on our two-wheeler,stop at Sree Krishna sweets Adyar,get two glasses of take-away badam milk and head straight to Besant nagar beach.We'd find a cozy spot for ourselves and sip on our badam milk as we'd discuss our future plans.During one such outing,we got a shock when we sipped curdled Badam milk,no kidding!There ended our badam milk fiesta along with the beach outing[okay,not the last part!]
Badam milk 2

Come 2011-We hardly go to the beach these days and even if we do,we get one Jughead special from Fruit shop and sit in the car and discuss which restaurant we should have dinner from!

This post has got nothing to do with our future plans or dinner plans but a very simple recipe for homemade badam milk which got over before I could spell a-l-m-o-n-d.Anything to beat Chennai heat!
Badam milk 1

Badam-Carrot Milk
Recipe adapted from Bharathy's blog


Fat free milk - 1/2 litre
Sugar - 4-5 tsp[or to taste]
Almonds - 20,blanched
Carrot - 1 small,cubed
Cardamom powder - 1 tsp
Saffron strands - a few
Almonds chopped-a handful[optional]


Make a paste of blanched almonds with 2-3 tbsp milk until it becomes a smooth paste,keep aside.
Cook the carrots in a pressure cooker till soft.Add a few tsp of milk and blend into a smooth paste.
Boil the milk with sugar and add the nut and carrot pastes.Let it cook for 5-7 minutes on slow heat to let the nuts cook.
Mix in the cardamom powder and chopped nuts.
Garnish with saffron strands and serve chilled.

  • Fat free milk is preferred for this milk since full fat milk suppresses the taste of almonds.
  • I microwaved the carrots on full power for 3 minutes and used it.
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How did we like it -As soon as we took the first sip,we got transported back to our beach outings and hence the introduction.Perfect drink during summer season[and otherwise too].We liked the chilled version best though Bharathy says it could be served hot too.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Nankhatai ~ The perfect Indian Tea biscuit

Time flies like a whirlwind and before even I realized,it is the 7th day of the month,the day when we post our selected recipe chosen by A Sweet Punch hosts[aka yours truly,Maria & Ria].But this time there was a twist!We did not choose any recipes,instead asked all the members to bake something of their choice and we can't wait to see what everyone else is baking this month,what fun!


I baked these Nankhatais a while back.Some times,my bakes are meticulously planned[keeping in mind the intake of butter,sugar etc]but sometimes they happen in a flash.Just like this one.It was on a lazy afternoon I saw Raaga's Fb status message with a link to her recipe for Nankhatai and I was intrigued.I mean,I have seen that post before,she had mentioned how her mom's Nankhatais were quite popular with her friends.But the time to bake it had finally come.More so because I had a bottle full of ghee with me[which is a rare occurance].I didn't waste any more time and immediately hopped into the kitchen to make it.

Nankhatai 1

Half way into the baking,I knew[I just knew it] that this was IT.My search for THE perfect Nankhatai could be laid to rest coz it smelled wonderful.Perfect looks too,with the slight crack on top,I just couldn't wait to take my first bite.And when I did,I just couldn't stop--it is that good.Try it for yourself and see!!

Recipe source - Raaga of The Singing Chef


Maida/Flour - ¾ cup
Cooking soda - 1/8 tsp
Powdered Sugar - ¼ cup
Ghee - 1/3 cup[generous]
Cardamom and Powdered Nutmeg - ¼ tsp each


Nankhatai collage

Preheat oven to 180C.

Cream the sugar and the ghee until well blended.
Sift the flour with the soda. Add this to the sugar-ghee mixture. Add the cardamom and nutmeg powders. 
Make a dough and divide into small balls. 
Flatten each ball onto a cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes at 180 C.
Allow to cool and store in airtight containers.


How did we like it - As I said,I'd never look for another Nankhatai recipe again coz this one works like a charm.Raaga says this is a halved recipe,so this one can be easily doubled for a bigger batch--and you'd need a bigger batch to satisfy your cravings.We immediately shared this with some friends for the fear that we'd finish  it all by ourselves!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

I love your Blog - Anushruti's Divine Taste

I've been thinking of starting this series for a long time now.I try so many recipes from other blogs and many a times from a particular blog back to back that I thought I should write a post exclusively on that.Some time back Nags did something on similar lines and I knew I shouldn't delay this series any further.

I'll start the series with one of my favorite bloggers of all time--Anushruti,who blogs at Divine Taste.I am sure you have come across her pretty blog with dashing pictures and wonderful recipes.I don't remember when was it that I bumped on to her blog,but once I did,there was no turning back.There are so many recipes that I have tried from her blog,so many yet to.So for a start,let me share with you some of her posts which are my favorites.

Eggless Pineapple Cream Cake
One of my favorite bakery treats of all time is Pineapple Cream cake-despite baking for some time now,I get cold feet every time I think of baking this wonder treat.Here,Anu has made an Eggless version of the same with a fool-proof whipped cream frosting recipe.I am definitely making this after some confidence boost!

Paneer Makhani with Matar Pulao & Cucumber Raita

Pulao's are my all time favorite one pot meals.I usually turn to making pulao when I am feeling lazy.I mean how easy it is to dump in some vegetables and rice together in a pressure cooker with simple spices and get a wholesome meal.Paneer and Peas make a great combo and a Makhani Paneer with Peas Pulao would make a hearty meal for myself,lazy or not!Anu's pictures make it even more delectable.

Vegetarian Strawberry Cheesecake
I am not a big fan of Cheesecake and can happily live without it.But this slice is calling my name!More so because it is pure vegetarian made with China grass and not Gelatine.I am a versatile vegetarian[as I'd call myself] because I eat eggs in cakes and Gelatine in puddings etc.But Anu has very strong feelings about the same and makes sure she has her cake and gets to eat it too!!Also check out her Mango Cheesecake recipe.

Baby Potatoes in Yogurt gravy/Dahi Aloo

Potato is something which can be made into any curry and still taste delicious.How about making it guilt free,don't believe me?Check out this dahi aloo which does not require any oil,no kidding.Indulge all you want!

Eggless vanilla Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

The first recipe I tried from her blog and the one I turn to every time I am required to bake eggless cakes.A very simple recipe which can be made as plain or as festive as you want it to be.The frosting is a simple one and it complements the cake very well.My go-to eggless cake recipe of all time.

Herbed Wholemeal Bread Rolls

Bread baking is an art,I believe.Looking at the bread rolls my belief is reinforced.I get jittery when it comes to baking with yeast and Anu has made these pretty rolls using Wholewheat flour.Hats off.Definitely on my to-bake list!

I had a tough time choosing recipes for this post coz each and every recipe in her blog looks so good.Now a small list of recipes I have tried from her blog.

Eggless Chocolate Cake

Eggless Fruit and Nut Cake

Eggless Orange Cake with Orange Buttercream Frosting

Bread & Butter Pudding with Custard and Strawberries

How to make Dulce de Leche

Jam Biscuits

Eggless Golden Yellow Cake[yet to post]IMG_4745

All pictures from Divine taste reproduced with the bloggers permission.

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