Vanilla Grape Smoothie

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

Hello my Dear Wonderful Readers!!

How are you all? So, i know it’s only February but it sure feels like summer out here and we have started making lots more smoothies and juices. So this morning we had a simple grape and yogurt smoothie.

Now I am not really sure why people do not like grapes as much as I do. I know strawberries and blueberries have their own exotic appeal, but the humble grape is a wonderfully healthy fruit. Grapes are high in antioxidants. Infact any fruit or vegetable that has a dark skin (like purple, dark red etc.) are said to be high in antioxidants and good for the heart. Grapes are excellent at regulating high blood pressure and preventing heart related diseases. They contain high amounts of fiber and potassium. Whats more they do wonders for your skin too. Today I have paired them with vanilla yogurt, oats and bananas to make it a full meal in itself.

Ingredients :-

  1. Grapes – 3 cups ( seedless, cleaned and de stemmed)
  2. Oats – 3 tbsp
  3. Bananas – 2 small ( chopped and frozen)
  4. Yogurt – 2 cups (vanilla flavoured or regular)
  5. Milk – as required ( depends on how thick on thin you like it)
  6. Honey – 2 tbsp ( optional depending on the sweetness of the grapes)

 

Instructions :-

  1. Put all the ingredients into a blender (except the milk)
  2. Mix well for 5 – 8 mins
  3. Then add as much milk as desired
  4. Serve right away

 

ALFAJORES – Dulche de leche sandwich cookies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have always been afraid of the cooker. Even when I make simple “Dal Chawal ” at home,  worry that it might explode, so I never stay in the kitchen while it is on the stove. So when I decided to make Dulche De Leche I woke up early this morning and decided to do it when my baby was far away from the kitchen and my husband was at home! ( You know thinking worst case scenario and all)! But to my surprise nothing happened! yeah I know you are laughing at me. The truth is I though I would be left with a broken stove, exploded cooker and a room full of condense milk and water. Yes go ahead! laugh! That my friend is my biggest nightmare. So when ever there is anything cooking in my kitchen I never let my son in. And when the cooker is on the stove, even I do not stand in the kitchen.( i rush in just to switch it off :p)

When I finally opened the can of condense milk, OH MY GOD! That is when I realised how delicious this version of the condense milk is! Now I know what the fuss is all about! That sweet caramely liquid inside that can was like I was in heaven! That minute I knew I should have let it sit for maybe one more whistle but thats ok . I am happy with the outcome.

Ok before I get to how I made the cookies, if you were wondering how I made that dulche de leche, I used the pressure cooker method.

Ingredients:-

  1. Flour – 1 cup ( set aside one teaspoon from the cup)
  2. Corn Flour – 1 cup
  3. Baking Powder – 1 tsp
  4. Baking Soda – 1/2tsp
  5. Butter – 113 gms
  6. Sugar – 1/3 cup
  7. Vanilla Extract – 2 tsp
  8. Egg Yolks – 2 ( at room temperature)
  9. Brandy – 1tbsp + 1 tsp ( for the Dulche de leche)
  10. Crushed Nuts – 1 cup ( use any kind of nut you like – wall nuts, cashews, pecan, almonds)
  11. Dulche De Leche – 1 can

Instructions :-

  1. In a bowl mix flour, corn flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside
  2. In another bowl cream butter and sugar
  3. Add egg yolks one at a time. Then add vanilla and Brandy
  4. Now add dry ingredients into the wet ingredients little by little. Cream well. I used my hand blender but a whisk will do the job too
  5. Once you have added all the flour it will come together to make a nice ball
  6. Now wrap the ball with cling wrap and refrigerate for 30 mins to an hour
  7. While the dough is resting in the fridge, pre heat your oven to 180C
  8. Once the dough is read, light dust your counter top with the one tsp of flour that you set aside in the beginning
  9. Roll out the dough making sure to keep an even width of 4mm at least. I used my seated cookie cutter but you can cut them out in any space you want
  10. Slowly place them on your cookie tray leaving 3 – 5 cms apart from each other
  11. Pop them into the fridge for 10 mins
  12. When you are ready to bake these cookies, pop them into the area heated oven and bake for 10 to 15 mins
  13. You do not need to wait till they are brown. You will see them rise a little and the flaky sides are clearly visible
  14. Pull them out of the oven and let them sit on a cooling rack till completely cool
  15. Once cooled completely add dulche de leche on one side of a cookie and sandwich it with another cookie. I recommend adding one table spoon of brandy to the dulche de leche for that mild yet exotic flavour!
  16. You can roll them in any crushed nut that you like. Typically they are rolled in coconut flakes, but I love salted cashews so thats what I used! This part is your choice. You could use chocolate flakes, walnuts, pecans, almond! Any thing you like

 

 

 

 

Cinnamon Vanilla Coffee

Making coffee every morning is as rudimentary as brushing your teeth or staring at your reflection in the mirror every morning. So to cut down the monotony in this mundane routine maybe you could spice it up with a little cinnamon.

The days I know my husband is going to have a long day at work or he just needs that extra punch to set off his day on a happy note, I make him this coffee and it leaves a smile on his face. I hope you enjoy it too.

Ingredients –

Milk – 2/3 Cup
Water – 1 / 3 Cup
Coffee Powder – 2 tsp (more if you want it stronger)
Cinnamon Powder – a pinch
Sugar – 2 tsp
Vanilla Extract – 1 tsp

Procedure –

Mix water and milk in a pan and set to boil. Once the water is hot, add the coffee and cinnamon powder. Let it bowl but take care not to let it spill out. Switch off the flame and cover the pot to let the coffee infuse. ( A minute or two is fine)

Then add the sugar and vanilla extract to the coffee and strain it into your favorite cup

Have a good day 🙂

Cinnamon Vanilla Coffee