Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Cup cake Workshop at Paparazzi!

On the festive season of Diwali Royal Orchid Central had invited me along with family for a fun cup cake making session. What more can kids ask for!! These cup cakes were very different from the regular ones. The frosting was all desi tasting ingredients and was very innovative. For example, Gulkand, kesar (saffron), Masala chai and many more..

CUP CAKE WITH DESI TWIST in TOPPINGS:
  • Peanut Butter cream
  • Kesar Khoya Cream
  • Gulkand Frosting
  • Jamoon Pistachio Cream Cheese Frosting
  • Masala Chai Frosting
  • Kahlua Oreo Frosting
  • Dark Chocolate Ganache chili Frosting




Chocolate Ganache

Other toppings like Gulab Jamun, Oreo cookies, Pistachios, chilli flakes and many colorful kid friendly toppings!


CUP CAKE
History
The cup cake evolved in earlier 19th century in the United States. According to food historians have yet to point, exactly where the name of Cup cake originated. There are two Theories coming up… 1) the cake were originally cooked in cups 2) The ingredients used to make the cup cakes were measured by the cup.
Earlier times cup cakes were not that popular around. The cake made of regular ingredients like Normal cake. But, today cup cakes have expanded to a worldwide. In modern trend cup cakes were uniquely topped with various frosting.
Cup cakes were convenient because, they get cooked much quicker than larger cakes.


Chef  Hafizullah Baig
Chef Baig was a very friendly and creative person. He showed us the step wise procedure of making a good cupcake and also gave me alternatives of eggless cup cakes!

Mix and match of different colors!

Mixing chocolate!



PEANUT BUTTER FROSTING
INGREDIANTS
UNIT
QTY
Unsalted Butter
gm
50
Icing sugar
gm
100
Peanut Butter
gm
100
Whip Cream
ml
50
Rainbow Sugar Balls
Garnish


METHOD
  • Keep Butter at room temperature. Should be soft in texture not be Melted.
  • Mix Butter, icing sugar, peanut Butter with electric beater until smooth and creamy on Medium speed.
  • Finally add the whip cream on high speed until the Mixture is light and Fluffy.


KESAR KHOYA FROSTING

INGREDIANTS
UNIT
QTY
Whip Cream
ml
50
Sweet Khova
gm
100
Kesar(Saffron)
gm
0.5
Silver Sugar Balls
few
Garnish
Saffron Threads
few
Garnish
METHOD
  • Beat Whip cream with electric beater until smooth, light and Fluffy.
  • Blend Sweet Khova in whip cream without lumps.
  • Dissolve Saffron in hot cooking cream add along with mixture.


GULAB JAMOON & PISTACHIO CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

INGREDIANTS
UNIT
QTY
Unsalted Butter
gm
20
Icing sugar
gm
20
Philadelphia cream cheese
gm
100
Lemon zest
No
1
Whip Cream
ml
50
Gulab Jamoon

Garnish
Pistachio
Slices
Garnish
METHOD
  • Keep Butter at room temperature. Should be soft in texture not be Melted.
  • Mix Butter, icing sugar, Philadelphia cream cheese, Lemon Zest with electric beater until smooth and creamy on Medium speed.
  • Finally add the whip cream on high speed until the Mixture is light and Fluffy.


MASALA CHAI FROSTING
INGREDIANTS
UNIT
QTY
Whip Cream
ml
50
Masala Chai Extract
ml
100
Icing Sugar
gm
50
Cadbury Gems
few
Garnish



MASALA CHAI EXTRACT
INGREDIANTS
UNIT
QTY
Water
ml
300
Tea Leaf
gm
50
Cinnamon
gm
2
Cardamom
gm
5
Cloves
gm
1
Fresh Ginger
gm
5
Combine all above ingredients and keep it on Simmer for 30mins, Bring down masala Extraction to 1/3, Strain it and Cool it down in refrigerator.

METHOD
  • Beat Whip cream with icing sugar in electric beater at medium speed.
  • In co-operate Masala chai extraction slowly into it.
  • Garnish it with Gems.




KAHLUA OREO FROSTING

INGREDIANTS
UNIT
QTY
Unsalted Butter
gm
50
Icing sugar
gm
100
Espresso Coffee
ml
50
Sunrise Coffee Powder
Gm
2
Kahlua Liquor
ml
50
Whip cream
Ml
50
Oreo Cookies
Few
Garnish

METHOD
  • Keep Butter at room temperature. Should be soft in texture not be Melted.
  • Mix Butter, icing sugar, Espresso Coffee, Coffee Powder with electric beater until smooth and creamy on Medium speed.
  • Finally add the whip cream and Kahlua Liquor on high speed until the Mixture is light and Fluffy.
  • Garnish it with Oreo Cookies


GULKAND FROSTING

INGREDIANTS
UNIT
QTY
Whip Cream
ml
50
Gulkand
gm
100
Rose Petals
few
Garnish
Chocolate Vermicelli
few
Garnish



METHOD
  • Beat Whip cream with electric beater until smooth, light and Fluffy.
  • Blend Gulkand Compote (Available in Market) in cream.

DARK CHOCOLATE GANACHE CHILLI FROSTING

INGREDIANTS
UNIT
QTY
Dark Chocolate
gm
200
Heavy Cream
ml
100
Unsalted Butter
gm
75
Dried Red Chilies
gm
1




METHOD
  • Combine all the above ingredients in a Bowl except Chilies. Use Microwave or Double Boiler to melt the chocolate.
  • Add chilli flakes (without seed) into the mixture, stir gently with wire whisk to get silky and smooth texture.
  • Allow it cool in Refrigerator till the time it becomes thick and firm.

Gulkand with some sprinkles!

colorful creativity of goodness!

It was indeed great fun workshop for me and kids! We also got a goodie bag filled with these cupcakes!

Royal orchid central
47/1, Manipal center,
Dickenson road, 
Bangalore- 42

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Apple Salad - Go healthy with Washington apples!


Apples are Really Good For You! Eating fresh apples is always good for you, but to get the full nutritional benefits associated with eating apples you should eat at least one fresh apple every day.

I was sent some fresh Granny Smith apples by the SCS Group and Washington Apple Commission for me to taste and make something. What can be more refreshing than a salad. This is how I like my everyday salad.

Ingredients

Fresh Granny Smith Apples-2
handful of walnuts (slightly toasted)
Romaine Lettuce- 1 cup
handful of Mint leaves
Italian seasoning-1/2 tsp
lemon juice- 1/2 tsp
olive oil- 1tsp
any cheese (optional) - 1 tbsp for sour taste

Preparation

Wash and dry the apples, lettuce and mint leaves. chop them roughly into bite size and toss them in a bowl. Add toasted walnuts, Italian seasoning, olive oil, lemon juice and mix. I do not add salt.

Granny Smith apples are green, extremely tart, crisp, juicy and versatile. They are popular for making Pies.
Apples have lots of health benefits like cancer prevention, healthy lungs, heart disease and stroke prevention and weight loss!
For more information visit bestapples.com

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Paper Boat Drinks to quench summer thirst!

Day by day I float my paper boats one by one, down the running stream.
In bid black letters I write my name on them and the name of the village where I live.
I hope that someone in some strange land will find them and know who I am.
I load my little boats with shiuli flower from our garden, and hope that these blooms of the dawn will be carried safely to land in the night.
I launch my paper boats and look up into the sky and see the little clouds setting thee white bulging sails.
I know not what playmate of mine in the sky sends them down the air to race with my boats!
When night comes I bury my face in my arms and dream that my paper boats float on and on under the midnight stars.
The fairies of sleep are sailing in them, and the lading in their baskets full of dreams.

Paper Boats by,
Rabindranath Tagore.

I was very much carried away by the Paper Boat website. Couldn't believe someone has created a drink with a concept of bringing back childhood memories !


Paper Boat, much like the Tagore poem, claims to send these drinks, these culinary messages to those who have never tasted such concoctions. And of course to those, who long for the days gone by. Of homemade Aamras, Jaljeera, Kokum, Aampanna, Kala Khatta and many other secret recipes.
 
Inspired by these famous lines….. four industry veterans Neeraj Kakkar, James Nutall, Suhas Misra and Neeraj Biyani coming from varied backgrounds, these Founding Fathers who are also nicknamed as The A-Team and Fantastic Four are the power behind ‘Paper Boat’.


Imli ka Amlana
A refreshing ale from the hills of Marwar, usually had a bowl of tasty khichda, the amlana is a testament of the region’s victories and
celebrations. A drink fit for the grandest of events, Imli ka Amlana offers to your palate something you thought was long gone - an
element of surprise. The tang of tamarind coupled with the
complimentary zest of cinnamon (and some other secret spices), this is the definitive sweet-sour (and spicy) ale for the centuries
Jaljeera 
 A hot summer day is magnified tenfold in India. The sun, once a trusted ally, is now a vengeful god charring its antlike populace. Don’t worry he’ll calm down in a while. But till he does, what respite does a mortal have against the might of distant nuclear fusion of a main-sequence star that constantly turns hydrogen into helium*? The answer descends from the heavens in the form of Jaljeera - The perfect infusion of cumin, lemon juice, black pepper and rock salt that functions both as an electrolyte AND an appetizer. Perfect for those summer days, those heavy meals, those elaborate family functions... Actually, you don’t need a reason to drink Jaljeera, you just need to be.
Golgappe ka Pani
Nothing makes you stop in your tracks in a harried evening like the sight of a Golgappewala (Or Panipuriwala. Or Phuchkawala. Or Patashewala. The list goes on.) The very thought of a Golgappa can make you salivate like you did the first time to had one. You couldn’t believe yourself. You couldn’t believe that they could make food taste like this. But they did. And we bring you the same Golgappe ka Pani. Well, minus the aftermath of the gastrointestinal horrors that you might or might not have faced.
 Aam Panna
The pre-vacation between your actual summer vacation and the last day of the final exams.The buffer time it took for your teachers to grade you, to graduate you into another class. That was the window of The Kairi. There was something poetic about raw, unfledged mangoes enticing our fully formed taste buds. Like it was another fruit altogether. Mixed with spices, mint and served cold, almost inversely to the soaring temperatures outside. You gushed it down in a single gulp. But the moment lingered forever.


Jamun Ka Khatta
Jamun Kala Khatta is not quite the Kala Khatta (of chemical Gola stain fame) you grew up with... A paradox of sorts, this Kala Khatta, dark purple and not black, dates all the way back to the year 100 AD. Made at the peak of civilization, this drink was called Raga. And those who had it, described it as music for the taste buds. (They also described actual music as fragrance for the ear.)
Therapeutic as it is tasty, they say Kala Khatta can be used to cure a host of ailments. (Hangovers? Certainly!) But don't take our word for it. Try it out. Take a little swig. Fancy a gulp. Infer a chug. Who knows? You might even describe it as a great novel for the nostrils.

Kokum
 A berry belonging to the mangosteen family and largely indigenous to the western ghats, Kokum is a specific affair. Seemingly made exclusively for the South Asian palate (it grows nowhere else in the world!), Kokum, with its unique zest, is certainly a taste to reckon with. And eventually accept defeat to.
And the sherbet made from Kokum berries, a hint of cardamom, cumin and sugarcane extract has been described as the reason why Ratna fell and decided to name an entire district after the incident. But Ratnagiri's dubious nomenclature aside, Kokum is a relaxant, an anti-oxidant and an appetizer. So when you treat yourself to Kokum, Kokum treats you back.

 Aamras
During summer, there is barely a home in western India, be it Gujarat or Rajasthan, that doesn’t partake in the festivity that is Aamras. Sometimes, they have it with milk, sometimes rotis and if time and patience allow, they even make sweets out of it. But the best way to go about Aamras is to have it directly as is. The way the ancients intended. Without preservatives or artificial flavour. Without frills or hassles. An honest treat for an honest day’s work. A silkesque ale cascading down your throat - Soothing, serenading and more importantly, lingering. To remind you that the mango is indeed the true king of the fruit realm. And that we cannot help but submit to its tasty tyranny.

My personal favorite is chilled Aam panna for this summer and for the kids its needless to say!! All are their favorite!

The Best part I like about the website is Hope Floats
It is a lovely initiative to gift a bit of childhood to kids who really need it. For every Paper Boat you make, the paper boat people will give INR 20 to facilitate the education of an under-privileged child somewhere. All you have to do is make a simple paper boat, take its picture and upload it on their Facebook or Twitter page. This way you will help a child who is in need.

So quench your thirst with theses drinks which have a touch of tradition and memories!

 

Thursday, April 3, 2014

7th blog Anniversary with Magnum Icecream

It's been an amazing journey so far, I lost track of time and forgot that my blog is now seven years old. Didn't know that when kids grow older our responsibilities multiply! I am hardly posting recipes and only doing the review part these days.

A big "Hearty Thank You" to all my readers and visitors for your support, patience and encouragement all through these years. Please keep visiting and commenting. This keeps me inspired to blog. This year started with a big bang for me! I got the meet the very handsome and modest Indian celebrity chef and restaurateur Kunal Kapur and attend his masterclass!

Kunal Kapur is one of the most celebrated faces of Indian cuisine today. He is Chef extraordinaire, TV show host, winner of several culinary awards and the author of recently launched cookbook- ‘A Chef in Every Home’. He is living his dream of making Indian cuisine the number one cuisine in the world and empowering everyone through power of cooking to become self-sufficient. Chef Kunal (Executive Sous Chef, The Leela, Gurgaon) has been recognised amongst the Best Chefs in India by National Weekly Magazine - India Today. Recently, the Food & Nightlife Magazine adjudged him as the “Gourmet Guru”. He has been honored as one of the Top 20 chefs of India.

The event started like an interactive session with the chef. It was real pleasure to meet him. He started asking us about chocolates, the various types, test to identify the  best chocolate and how Magnum is different! We got 3 samples of chocolates and were asked to do a taste test.
For me eventually all were chocolates but I liked the bitter sweet one better and it was a nice start up!
Then came the tasting of Magnum Ice creams which was served in 3 different flavors. Chef Kunal Kapur wanted us to take the first bite and asked us how it feels after the very first bite! We were all speechless and were more keen on continuing the ice cream :)
Next was the creativity part. We got divided into teams and were given some ingredients along with the ice cream. We had to create something out of the given items.
I grabbed a few ingredients and found some gummy bears so we all decided to create traffic signals and a sundae out of them. This is what it eventually turned out to be :)

Though we all ended up with messy and sticky fingers we had so much fun creating it all! But the chef  created his master own piece which was standing out amongst us !

He even explained how to get the angry look of the bird with the placement of its eyes! That was simply awesome!
The event happily came to end with some refreshments, photo sessions, autographs, and goodie bags!



About Magnum:
Unilever’s biggest impulse ice-cream brand globally, Magnum not only dominates entire Europe but also is making giant waves across U.S., Asian countries like Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines. Its currently sold in more than 40 countries.Made from the finest Belgian chocolate and velvety smooth ice-cream, each bar of Magnum is crafted skillfully from bean to bite to invoke a sophisticated sensuous sensation, keeping perfect balance between bitter, sweet and milky. It’s a luxurious choc o-bar on a stick, fairly sophisticated flavors — vanilla wrapped in a neat, sturdy shell of Belgian chocolate.Magnum strongly believes " A day without pleasure is a day lost... " .They say if you haven't tasted Belgian chocolate you haven't experienced pure pleasure.
Magnum in India :
After a successful launch in Chennai last year ,the impulse ice cream brand is all set to make waves this summer in Bangalore, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Pune.
Magnum ice creams are made with 100% pure Belgian chocolate. They are delicious, creamy ice-creams covered in a thick layer of Belgian chocolate shell
Magnum’s “distinctive crack”- The sound and sight of the Belgian chocolate shell breaking when one first bites into the ice cream is signature Magnum
Magnum is one of the world’s largest chocolate ice cream brands and is owned by Unilever. As Unilever’s biggest impulse ice-cream brand globally, Magnum not only dominates Europe but is also making waves across the U.S. and Asian countries like Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. 
Magnum truly is an intense and remarkable experience of pleasure. It delivers pleasure experiences that are sensorial and intense, the kind that leaves you completely satisfied. It has a perfectionist approach.  From crafting to ingredient selection, there’s attention to every detail
Flavors available in India :
Classic: Plain vanilla ice cream covered in Belgian milk chocolate shell. Perfect for those who don’t like too much frills while enjoying an ice cream bar.

Almond: Plain vanilla ice cream covered in Belgian milk chocolate shell with almond nuts. Perfect for those who like some crunch in their ice cream.

Chocolate Truffle: Plain chocolate ice cream with chocolate truffle syrup covered in Belgian milk chocolate shell. Perfect for the chocoholics out there who like a good mix of creamy and bitter chocolate ice cream.
My Hearty Thanks to Sameer Malkani of Food Bloggers Association, India (FBAI) for sending me the invite and making it a memorable evening for me!