Mango Rasgulla

If you like Rasgulla as much as I do, then I suggest you try this recipe right away. Whenever anyone talks about Bengali Sweets, the image that’s comes to mind is one of small round clay pots filled with Rasgulla and Rasmalai, the sweet smell of sugar syrup and saffron and the little strands of saffron on the sweets.

Mangoes are still in season so I though why not combine the two! I am sure I am not the first one to think of such a recipe but I decided to call this my own recipe cause it took me close to 4 attempts to get it right. So this is my final masterpiece. J

Ingredients

  • Whole Milk – 1 ltr
  • Lime Juice – 2 tbsp
  • Powdered Sugar – 1 cup + 1/2 cup to add to cheena
  • Rava (Suji) – 1 tbsp
  • Flour – 1 tbsp
  • Cardamom Powder – ¼ tsp
  • Mango Pulp – 1 cup
  • Milk Powder – 2 tbsp (or less)
  • Water – 3 cups
  • Saffron – 4-5 strands (optional)

Instructions

  • Pour milk into a heavy bottom pot and place on medium flame
  • Once the milk comes to a rolling boil, add lime juice to the milk and take it off the flame
  • Let the milk stand for 5 – 6 mins. This is when you will see the milk curdling and separating from the whey.
  • While that happens, line a deep dish with cheesecloth wide enough to cover the mouth of the dish. The cloth should be big enough to hold the cheese and to tie up a knot.
  • Now drain the milk into this cheesecloth over the deep dish. The cheese gets collected in the cloth and whey in the dish. Discard the whey.
  • Under running water, vigorously wash the cheese inside the cloth by tossing the bag between your fingers. This is to ensure that the cheese does not taste like lime J
  • Now once you have washed it well, string the bag onto a spoon in such a way that the bag hangs into the dish but does not touch the bottom of the dish. This is to let the whey completely drip out.
  • Let the cheese hang for 40mins to an hour
  • While the cheese is drying out, pour the mango pulp into a saucepan and bring it to boil. Add milk powder little at a time. This is to thicken the mango pulp. Once the pulp has reduced to 1/3 its original volume turn off the gas and let it cool down completely. Once done the mango pulp is a little harder than jam.
  • After an hour, open up the bag and you will see that the cheese has somewhat hardened. This is “Chenna”
  • Empty all the Chenna onto your clean counter top and knead for 5 mins
  • Then add the Rava, 1/2 cup sugar, Flour and Mango pulp (cooked and cooled) to the Chenna and knead for another 10 mins
  • In a dish, pour in some water and add sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil. Add cardamom powder and saffron strands to the sugar water
  • While the water is boiling, make small bite size balls of the “Chenna”
  • Slowly drop the cheese balls into the boiling water
  • Do not put too many of them at a time. Once they almost double in size, slowly transfer them to your serving bowl
  • Once all the balls are cooked transfer the sugar syrup into the same serving bowl. Your mango rasgullas are ready
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Vanilla Panna Cotta with Kiwi Compote

 

 

 

 

There are times when you want a simple decadent dessert that is just the right mix of sweet, creamy and sour. The rich creamy texture of vanilla Panna cotta combines with the slight sourness of kiwi to balance this wonderful dessert!

The first time I had Panna cotta was at a restaurant and it was topped with a pomegranate jelly. I didn’t like it too much. I think the toughness of the jelly put me off completely. But the soft, smooth cream layer next was just heavenly! That’s when I decided I should try variations of this dessert. There on I have tried a variety of them, some of them I will post on the blog.

“Sour” is just a great flavour to go with sweet! And I just love kiwi! It isn’t a fruit you find that often where I come from, so for me it would be an exotic fruit! When I was doing my law degree my mum would make this amazing soft milk cake, with butter cream.This cake would be covered with Kiwis, cherry, pineapple bits and some times lychee! Oh it was just a wonderful experience! Each bite would be filled with sweet and sour and sugar and butter and gooooodness!!! I still remember how it would look all red and green and white on a steel grey cake tray set on a dark brown table…….

Anyway this dessert derives its inspiration from that yummy time!

Ingredients

1) Heavy Cream – 1 cup

2) Full fat milk – 1 cup

3) Caster Sugar – 1 cup

5) Vanilla Extract – 2tsp

6) Gelatin Powder – 2 tsp

7) Water – 3 tbsp

Kiwi Compte

1) Fresh Kiwi – skin peeled and cut into cubes

2) Sugar – 1/2 cup

3) Vanilla extract – 1 tsp

Instructions :-

  • Pour water into a bowl and sprinkle gelatin powder over it. Set aside
  • In a heavy bottom pan, add milk and cream. Heat this mixture on low, constantly stirring to ensure that the cream does not burn or boil over
  • Once it has come to a simmer, add the gelatin mixture and vanilla extract
  • Take the cream mixture off the heat and pour into desired glasses
  • Carefully place the glass of cream into fridge for at least 3 -4 hours
  • While the creams sets get started with the kiwi compote
  • In a sauce pan, combine cubed kiwi and sugar. Let the mixture simmer on medium heat till the kiwi breaks down to a liquid paste. Then add vanilla extract to the kiwi mixture ( this is only to take away the smell of boiled fruit, so you can decrease the amount of extract if you like)
  • Take the kiwi mixture off the stove and let it cool to room temperature
  • Pour kiwi compote onto the set vanilla cream layer just before you serve
  • This dessert is best enjoyed chilled 🙂

 

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Melon Granita

This is the easiest frozen dessert ever! I am trying my level best to stay away from sugar filled desserts and when ever I crave for something frozen like an ice cream or sorbet, this is my only remedy. If you like flavored crushed ice as much as I do then you should try this one. It just needs 5 ingredients and it just takes one blender bowl!

Ingredients :-

1) Water Melon – 1 Cup ( cut to cubes)

2) Mush Melon or Cantaloupe – 1 cup ( cut to cubes)

3) Water – 1/2 cup

4) Sugar – 1/2cup ( or lesser if the melon is sweet)

5) Cloves – 4

Instructions :-

1) Add all the ingredients into a blender bowl and blend till nice and smooth

2) Pour into a nice long tray and freeze for an hour

3) Then take a fork and run it through the mixture. It should have formed a thin hard layer on the top

4) Comb through the ice mixture well

5) Put it back in the freezer for half n hour

6) Serve as soon as the mixture resembles the texture of sand

7) You can always freeze this mixture and keep it outside for half n hour before you serve

Summer of 2015!

Beyond these four walls and all that could be considered life and its “shade” is that common flower or that unseen tree that stood so bold and gallant yet so ignored by our fear of leaving our “shade” for the summer heat.              

Shahi Tukda

 

This is my first Indian sweet on my blog, so I thought why not start with my favorite home made one. This sweet is actually quite easy to make and does not really need any time to set or form. It’s a very simple sweet and needs just what you would usually have in your pantry. Whenever I have a few slices of bread extra and milk or condensed milk in hand, I make a few of these.

I am not sure how this recipe came into existence. Cause surely we did not invent the bread that goes into the recipe. Our bread is more like chappati or naan. Oh well, the blend of evaporated milk with cardamom and almonds and pistachio is just prefect to bring your taste buds alive and will leave your sweet tooth asking for more!!

This recipe is really easy to follow and you just can’t go wrong with it. Just make sure to boil milk on low and don’t burn the sugar syrup and you are good to go!

Ingredients :-

Rabbdi

  • Milk – 1 Ltr
  • Sugar – ½ cup + 2 tbsp
  • Cardamom – 3 whole ( crushed)

For Bread Slices

  • Bread slices – 10 – 12 (sides cut and diagonally cut into half)
  • Ghee/ Oil – 5 tbsp

Sugar Syrup

  • Sugar – 1 cup
  • Water – 1 Cup
  • Almonds – ½ cup (chopped or crushed)
  • Pistachio – ½ cup ( chopped or crushed)
  • Saffron strands – 4-5 ( optional) or White rose essence (4 – 5 drops)

Rabbdi (flavored evaporated milk)

  • In a heavy bottom pot, heat milk on low. Continuously stir and let the milk boil. Make sure not to let it spill over.
  • Regularly stirring it should ensure that the milk remains boiling but in the pot. Once you see the milk is hot, add ½ Sugar + 2 tbsp and cardamom.
  • As it boils you will see that the level of milk slowly descends. Continue to stir and boil till the liquid reaches 1/3rd of its original quantity. ( if you want it thicker you can boil it even more)
  • Just before taking it off the burner, add Rose essence or saffron strands. This is what adds a wonderful aroma and sweetness to the rabbdi.

Sugar Syrup

  • Combine the sugar and water and bring to a boil. Stir the mixture once or twice and see if the syrup is thick.
  • This syrup will be used to coat the bread so you want it thick and sticky so use a drop in between your finger and see if it sticks and leaves a straight string of sugar
  • Once done, set the syrup aside in plate or a wide neck container.

Bread slices

  • Heat ghee or oil in a pan and deep fry the bread slices two or three at a time (according to the size of the pan)
  • Then dip these slices of bread into the sugar syrup and once they are coated well, place them in your serving tray.
  • Repeat for all slices and arrange them however you like on a tray.
  • Just before serving, pour Rabbdi over sugar-coated bread slices and sprinkle almonds, pistachio and saffron over it.
  • Devour!!

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My Snicker Bnicker Brownie

Every food blog should have a brownie recipe!! Specially one that is dedicated to sweets, sugar and cake!! So this is my all time favorite brownie. Now before I tell you why it is my favorite, I should warn you, this recipe is full of fat, sugar, chocolate and sin! So if you are looking for a healthy recipe, this is NOT the one J

This brownie recipe makes a nice thick, fudgy, gooey brownie. Unlike many recipes, I don add rising ageing to the batter, this is what makes them nice and dense. It’s almost like eating chocolate with a darker and fluffier body. My husband says this is the best brownie he has ever had and as much as I have tried not to eat more than one piece, I have never ben able to stop myself till it’s over!! Again this is a one bowl recipe and all you need a good balloon whisk and a maybe a sieve. Also I used demerara sugar crystals and not powdered brown sugar, just for that extra crunch, but you can use powdered sugar as well (brown). Grease your baking tin well and use a good quality baking sheet over it. The brownies are really sticky so you want them to come off easily from the pan.

Oh did I mention, this brownie is full of Sinkers. Yup that’s right!! Snickers!!

So basically this brownie has, coco + dark chocolate + snikers! I don think I can add any more chocolate to this brownie!

Ingredients

  • Plain flour – 1/2cup
  • Coco Powder – ¾ cup
  • Eggs – 2
  • Dark Chocolate – 311 gms
  • Butter – 133 gms
  • Snickers – 4 bars
  • Brown Sugar – 1 Cup
  • Vanilla Extract – 1 tsp
  • Salt – a pinch
  • Corn Flour – 1 ½ tsp
  • Espresso shot – 1 tbsp

  Instructions

  • Line and grease your cake tray with butter and a baking sheet. Make sure the baking sheet spills out of the tray so it will be easy to take the brownies once done
  • In a bowl, combine butter, eggs, sugar and salt. Whisk till nice and smooth.
  • Then add vanilla extract and espresso shot to the butter mixture
  • Heat the dark chocolate in the microwave for one min (make sure it only turn to liquid and does not burn). Once it has cooled down, add to the wet mixture.
  • Then add coco powder and flour.
  • Once the flour is added don not work the mixture too much.
  • Add cut Snicker chunks into the batter.
  • Pour batter into your greased and line baking tray and bake for half an hour or till you see the sides of the brownie pull away from the side of the tray. I like my brownies fudgy and gooey so I take them out of the oven once the sides look done.
  • Let the brownie cool on a wire rack till nice and cool.
  • Then pull out the entire brownie block lifting the baking sheet on the sides. Place it on a chopping board and cut into as many pieces as your heart desires!!

Tomato Rice

Ok so this  is a quick post and I wanted to do this one cause for the past few weeks this has been my staple for lunch. I just don have the time to cook some thing elaborate so I love a pot meat that has every thing in it!

 If you like flavored rice then this one is a big yes yes!!

Ingredients :-

  • Tomatoes – 3 large (shopped into small cubes)
  • Rice – 1 cup
  • Water – 1 cup
  • Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
  • Cinnamon stick – 1 small ( 1inch )
  • Dry Chilly – 2
  • Oil – 1 tbsp
  • Onions – 1 large ( chopped)
  • Ginger garlic paste – 1 tsp ( optional)
  • Salt – 1/3 tsp
  • Red Chilly Powder – 1 tsp
  • Turmeric – 1/3 tsp

 Instructions

  • Heat oil in a cooker and add cinnamon stick. Once it begins ti sizzle, add mustard seeds. As soon as they crackle add the dry chilly.
  • Then add onions and ginger garlic paste. Fry till nice and golden brown
  • Then add the tomatoes + chilly powder and turmeric power to the onion fry and let it cook for 5 mins.
  • Once the tomatoes are done add the rice, water and salt.
  • Cover the cooker with its lid and wait for three whistles
  • Once done let it cook off in the cooker.
  • Serve hot along with a curry or pappad or a simple raita