Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Chocolate Cake

A lovely Christmas gift, neatly wrapped up ,..opened .. by three pairs of tiny hands, reaching impatiently to dig in at the yummiest goodie sitting pretty inside…the tiniest fingers(of my li’l sis )vouching for the thin white layer of simple white spread on top :) satisfied for the moment licking ‘em up..the other two pairs continuing for the rich, moist, chocolaty treat…

The above used to be the usual scene, every Christmas, when we were children.
Somehow ,three us were no great fans of those royal iced fruit cakes with the usual deep coloured hard sugar roses on top, which enter one by one during the festive season..

These Chocolate cakes make me truly nostalgic, simply turning me back to those lovely days, sent over specially by Omana aunty, our neighbour, in other words, Mrs Omana Paul, the master mind of the famous Devon Foods Ltd and a very well known caterer of our town)..yes we’re still lucky to receive her yummiest goodies, till date..;)..

(Let me hope she doesn’t chance upon my blog, esp this pick of mine as she's seemingly a li’l reluctant to share her specialities ;)..)

You Need:

All purpose flour - 300 gms
Powdered sugar - 450 gms (measure after powdering)
Unsalted butter - 290 gms
Milk powder - 20 gms
Curd - 8 oz
Cocoa powder - 70 gms
Eggs - 5 big
Salt - 1 pinch
Soda bi carb - 1 tsp
Nescafe instant coffee powder- 1 tsp
Vanilla essence - 2 tsp

How To Make:

Sieve all purpose flour+ cocoa powder + milk powder + soda + salt at least six times. This is to make sure that the ingredients have blended completely.

Beat the curd well to remove any lumps.

Beat sugar and butter, keep adding one egg at a time and keep mixing well along with the coffee powder. When this batter has blended well, add the vanilla essence.

Alternately add the curd, and the powder mixture to the butter and sugar mixture. Do not beat at this stage. Slowly blend the ingredients and keep mixing well.

Once the batter has blended well, grease a tray and bake in 350 degrees heat. It should take 35-40 minutes to be completely done or bake till the edge of an inserted skewer comes out clean.

Simple Butter Icing:

Mix 30gms butter and 80gms castor sugar and spread over the cake.

(Betty Crocker's/Pillsbury rich n creamy vanilla frosting would also work perfect).

Recipe courtesy : Mrs. Omana Paul.

Recipe Translation courtesy ;)-(since plagiarised from my sister’s post here.) ;) ;)
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Monday, April 20, 2009

Easy Cauliflower and Bell Pepper Gravy

If you are in a look out for the recipe of a quick vegetable gravy that would go almost with any main dish, and would serve fine, your unexpected guests or potluck parties, well, here's your choice!..
Yeah!..I am holidaying at my mom's place now and discovered this a dish both my aunt(dad's sis)and mom make quite recently, frequently..or rather invented by them? ;).
To my surprise V and kids loved this gravy and I thought of blogging as a keeper ;).

According to amma and aunt..
we need,

Cauliflower-a small one-divided into small flowerettes
Green Bell Pepper-diced an inch long (no need to make them too thin strips)-a cup
Big Onions-sliced thin and long-2 nos
Fresh/frozen Green peas-1/4 cup
Tomato pulp- a heaped tbsp (may substitute fresh tomatoes as well)
Red chilly powder-a tsp
An inch piece of ginger, 3 cloves of garlic and 3 green chillies- pulsed coarse in a mixie
Soy Sauce- a tbsp
Corn flour-a tbsp, dissolved in 1/4 cup of luke warm water
Cilantro-to garnish
Oil-a tbsp

Heat oil in a large wide non stick kadai. Sauté onions till translucent(take care, not until golden),and next the pulsed ginger-garlic-chilly mix till the raw smell disappears.Now goes in the red chilly powder. Throw in the bell pepper pieces now and sauté lightly.Stir in the soy sauce in high fame and put off after a few seconds.

Cook the flowerettes and peas in a separate vessel in just enough salter water and transfer into the above kadai with the remaining cooked water.Mix well and bring to a boil. Stir in the cornflour-water mix.Simmer till the required consistency is reached(as in the picture).Simmer again for 3-5 minutes as the gravy thickens. Garnish with fresh cilantro and serve hot. Goes best with chappathis, plain rice or fried rice.

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