Friday, December 26, 2014

Marble Bundt Cake

Merry Christmas, Guys....


This time presenting you Marble Bundt Cake. Super moist, Super delicious eggless Marble Bundt Cake.. The inspiration of my this Cake, is Reem (A friend from Social networking site), whose picture of Bundt cake, inspired me enough to make this on Christmas Day.. The recipe is my combined version of Chocolate cake and Vanilla cake.. Wanted to make quick and easy Christmas Cake, for Christmas dinner... Did not had time to frost, so I used nuts to decorate... And I am glad, I did... It gave a perfect nutty taste to the Cake...



Ingredients you need-

  1. All Purpose flour (Maida) - 1 3/4 cup
  2. Baking Soda- 1/4 tsp
  3. Baking Powder - 1tsp
  4. Butter - 1/2 cup (melted)
  5. Sugar - 3/4 cup
  6. Vanilla essence - 1 tsp
  7. White Vinegar - 1 tbsp
  8. Honey  -2tbsp
  9. Cocoa Powder - 2 tbsp
  10. Milk - 1/4 cup (warm)
  11. Water - 1/4 cup
  12. Nuts to decorate

Directions - 
  • Sift All purpose flour with Baking Soda and Baking Powder in a bowl.
  • Mix Butter with Sugar ingredients in another bowl, and beat until light and fluffy.
  • Add Vanilla essence, Honey and White Vinegar to this mixture.
  • Now, slowly fold dry ingredients in wet ingredients.
  • Add warm milk, in the mixture as required.
  • Divide this batter in almost half.
  • Heat the water in a microwave for 30 seconds, and mix cocoa powder in it.
  • In 1 half of the batter, mix cocoa mixture, and fold gently.
  • In a greased pan, spoon half of the plain batter all over.
  • Now, spoon this layer with a cocoa batter, in any way you want.
  • Top this with the left over plain batter, making sure all the cocoa mixture is covered.
  • From the top, add your favorite nuts..
  • Bake in a preheated oven at 375 deg, for 35 minutes.
  • After 35 minutes, when the toothpick comes out clean, remove the pan from the oven, and place it on counter-top for 10 minutes to set.

  • It is very important to let it set, as you do not want your Bundt to break.
  • Move your sharp knife, on the edges of pan.
  • Carefully, turn the pan upside down, on the serving dish.

  • Serve it anyway you want..
  • Cut and enjoy..

Monday, December 15, 2014

Almondy Delites #Creative Cookie Exchange

"I got up late today, and can smell the festive season. It was smelling so delicious. I ran towards the Kitchen. And there she was, my beautiful mom, taking out the fresh batch of these lovely cookies. O, these are so yum... How can you make so tasty cookies, Mom?"- Small story from my childhood.

Being a Child, we use to find fun in every activity. With all siblings together, we use to turn even a simple vacation into a festive one. Winter vacations were always a fun. Every morning, we use to get up, for a delicious smell and  a lovely breakfast. And my mom, use to make something different everyday, to make us feel special.

These cookies were one of her famous ones. I just made little bit of changes, to give it a new look. If you want to look for her original recipe of Almond Cookies, click here.... 

Every Sunday, I bake... Either a fresh batch of cookies, or a cake... Basically, I bake to prepare something fresh to give my Kiddo, for Snack time. I know, there are lots of stuffs available in stores, but then, when my Little One enjoys the treats I make for her, it gives me a complete satisfaction....

I got this idea of baking these cookies, as I was going through the stuffs in my pantry, for making another batch of Cookies.... I saw, a bag of "Hershey Kisses", left from Halloween Candy Exchange, and I remembered seeing some Cookies in Pinterest, in which Kisses where placed on top of the Cookies.... But, then my Little One wanted Shaped Cookies... So, everything together results in a wonderful creation of Almondy Delites... 



Being a part of #Creative Cookie Exchange, I feel delighted to work on something different everytime...The theme this month is International Winter Holiday Cookies! If it is a cookie traditionally observed near the Winter Solstice you might find it on list. If you are a blogger and want to join in the fun, contact Laura at thespicedlife AT gmail DOT com and she will get you added to out Facebook group, where we discuss our cookies and share links.

You can also just use us as a great resource for cookie recipes- be sure to check out our Pinterest Board and our monthly posts (you can find all of  them here at The Spiced Life). You will be able to find the the first Tuesday after the 15th of each onth! Also, if you are looking for inspiration to get in the kitchen and start baking, check out what all of the hosting bloggers have made:

Polish Vanilla Hazelnut Crescent Cookies (Ciasteczka Waniliowe) from The Spiced Life
Swedish Rye Cookies from What Smells So Good?
Chocolate Chip and Mandarin Orange Cookie Bars from NinjaBaking
Pecan Linzer Cookies from Sweet Cinnamon & Honey
German Zimsterne Christmas Cookies from Karen's Kitchen Stories
Besitos de Coco from Food Lust People Love
Norwegian Almond Cookies from Magnolia Days
Stained Glass Cookies from Spiceroots
Almondy Delite from Indian Curries/Stew
Rugelach from A Baker's House


Ingredients needed to bake cookies - 

1. Almonds - 1/2 cup
2. All purpose flour (Maida) - 1 cup
3. Baking Powder - 3/4 tsp
4. Unsalted Butter - 8 oz.
5. Sugar - 1/2 cup
6. Milk - 2 tsp (as required)
7. Hershey's Alond Kisses - 10
8. Cookie Cutter- Shape you desire ( I used heart shape)




Directions - 
Mix All Purpose flour with a baking powder in a bowl.
In another bowl, mix unsalted butter with sugar, and blend it well.
Crush the almonds in a mixing jar and mix it to the flour mixture.
Add flour mixture to the sugar mixture,and make a dough out of it.
Divide the dough in equal 10 parts and make small rounds of each part.
Divide each ball again in 2 parts, take 1 part and place it on oiled sprayed parchment paper.
Press the ball and make it 1/8" thick.
Use the Cookie cutter and cut the ball in your desired shape.
Place one of the Kisses on the Cookie, and take another half of the ball and cover it all around the Kisses Chocolate. It will look like a Small Mountain..., 
If the dough starts becoming sticky, put it inside the freezer for 5 minutes, and then start working.



Keep it on the baking tray in already heated Oven at 350 degrees for 15 minutes, or until the bottom of Cookies are light brown in color.
Take it out and let it cool down for 10 minutes, and enjoy.....




Monday, November 17, 2014

Orange-Ginger Cookies #CreativeCookieExchange

Ginger is a herb, which has lots of qualities.... In my household, intake of  ginger increases in winter... One of the main reason behind it is, when taken hot it reduces the inflammation inside the chest.... and hence helps the thick mucus on chest to thin-out... I personally, prefer to take ginger in my morning tea, every single day in winter, and it helps me maintain my distance from cough and cold....

My only problem, how to fit ginger in my little one's diet... Well, using ginger in stew, has worked out so far... But, then I was looking for some other ways as well... So, then I came across this brilliant idea of making Ginger Cookies.... Now, I wanted to make it much more healthier...

Orange, is one of the fruit, which contains lots of Vitamin- A and C... I just love the citrus taste of Orange in Orange Cake...  So, here comes my version of Orange Ginger Cookies.... Idea of Orange Ginger Cookies, is a collective idea from a Your Home Based Mom- Ginger Cookies and my version of Orange Cake....




The theme this month is Ginger! Dried and ground, candied, fresh--if you like ginger in your cookies you have come to the right place!  If you are a blogger and want to join in the fun, contact Laura at thespicedlife AT gmail DOT com and she will get you added to our Facebook group, where we discuss our cookies and share links.



You can also just use us as a great resource for cookie recipes--be sure to check out our Pinterest Board and our monthly posts (you can find all of them here at The Spiced Life). You will be able to find them the first Tuesday after the 15th of each month! Also, if you are looking for inspiration to get in the kitchen and start baking, check out what all of the hosting bloggers have made:



Ingredients -

  1. All Purpose flour (Maida)- 2 cups
  2. Baking Powder - 1/2 tsp
  3. Salt - 3/4 tsp
  4. Unsalted butter - 1 1/2 sticks (softened) 
  5. Sugar - 1 cup
  6. Ginger - 1/2 cup ( Grated)
  7. Egg - 1
  8. Orange zest - 2 tbsp
  9. Orange Juice - 1/2 orange (freshly sqeezed)
Directions - 
  • Mix Flour with baking powder and salt.

  • In another bowl, mix butter and sugar together, until light and fluffy.


  • Add grated ginger, and mix well.
  • Break egg in another container, beat until fluffy, mix in with the liquid mixture...
  • Add orange zest and Orange Juice, mix.

  • Wrap the dough, in parchment paper, and store in refrigerator for about 1 hour.
  • Heat the oven at 375 degrees.

  • Divide the dough in equal 4 parts.

  • Roll 1 part, in 1/4 inch thick..
  • With the cookie cutter, cut the shape you desire..

  • Grab the scrap, and again roll the dough, and repeat the process.
  • Now, line the cookies in a baking tray at 1 inch apart...
  • Place the tray in oven for 12 minutes...
  • After removing from oven, let it cool for 2-3 minutes, before transferring it to the wire rack..
  • Can be enjoyed like this, or can be glazed by white sugar, or can be drizzles by chocolate...

Few of the things, I would like to recommend for this whole baking process are -
     

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Nariyal (Coconut) Pedey

Diwali or Deepawali, also termed as feastival of lights.... It is one of the most important festival celebrated in India....It's a four day festival, and each day, we offer some sweets to God while worshipping them...  

Diwali is approaching, and the process of making variety of Sweets at every household has started... Every year, I make atleast 3-4 sweet dishes, among which 1 is the easiest recipe and takes a maximum of 15-20 minutes, and there is,1 difficult recipe... Nariyal pedey, is loved by everyone.... And one of the easiest sweets to make at home...


Ingredients - 

  1. Coconut (Nariyal) - 1 1/2 cup (frozen or dry) (I used dry coconut powder)
  2. Cardamom (elaichi) powder - 1 pinch
  3. Condensed Milk - 1/2cup
  4. Full Cream Milk - 1/2 cup
  5. Dry Coconut - 2-3 tbsp (to sprinkle)
  6. Pista/Almond to garnish
Directions - 
  • In a heated Pan, add Coconut, Condensed milk and Full Cream Milk together.





  • Stir and let it come to boil.
  • Reduce the flame, and keep stirring continuously.
  • Add Elaichi powder.
  • In about 5 Minutes, the mix will start leaving pan.



  • Keep on stirring, and it will turn into a dough.
  • Divide in equal parts.
  • Roll into a shape of Peda, and make a dent in center.. 
  • Press an Almond or Pista in center... 
  • And keep it in refrigerator for 30 minutes to cool....
  • And Serve...

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Potato-Yogurt Vrat Chat

Happy Navratri to everyone... This is one of the festivals, for which most of the Indians mostly like me, wait for the whole year...10 days of celebration, with so much of good food... Though many of us, are in fasting mood. Every family has their own traditions.... Some people, do the fasting of all 9 days, and eat only dairy products and fruits... Some of them, do the fasting by eating fruits in a day time, and takes 1 complete meal in 24 hours.... Some eat everything, just substitute regular Salt with RockSalt.... And Some do fasting, only for any 2 days....

Well, we follow a different tradition.... We stop eating Onions and Garlics, for full 9 days... All the curries and soups and cooked without Onions and Garlics... No eggs and non-veg, for these 9 days... And, on 10th day, in our ancestral house, a flag is hosted on the name of Goddess ShitalaDevi early in the morning... Everyone in family worships her, and we celebrate by cooking feast on 10th day i.e. on Dushhera... 

When I got married, and got to know about these rituals... The biggest trouble for me, was how to cook meal without onion and garlics, and that to, it should be yummy as well...

So, in the process of learning and experimenting, I learnt quite few things.... Sharing, 1 of the easiest and yummiest snack, which I make on these days.... You can increase the quantity, and make a full meal out of it...


Ingredients - 


  1. Potato - 3 (small, boiled, sliced)
  2. Oil to spray in pan
  3. Peanuts - 1 handful (roasted and crushed)
  4. Yogurt/ Curd - 1/2 cup (beated)
  5. Salt/rocksalt to taste
  6. Jeera powder to sprinkle (optional- omit if you do not eat in fasting)
  7. Red chilli powder to sprinkle (optional- omit if you do not eat in fasting or substitute by chopped green chilli)
Directions - 
  • Spray oil in a pan...
  • Roast the potatoes either side on medium flame... you are making them crunchier...
Boiled Potatoes

Crispy potatoes

  • Place the Potatoes in a serving plate....
  • Beat the curd, add salt, and transfer this curd above crunchy potatoes as another layer..
Beaten yogurt

Yogurt on crispy Potatoes

  • Sprinkle, jeera powder and red chilli powder/ chopped green chillies...
  • Top with crushed roasted peanuts...
Roasted peanuts

Crushed Peanut

Delicious Vrat chat

  • Serve immediately...

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Shahi Paneer

Guests are coming over for dinner...Do not have much time to cook... Well, thanks to my hubby for not informing me beforehand.... Have 3 hours in hand, and had to cook complete dinner.... I definitely love cooking, but then I like to decide my lunch/dinner menu, 1 day in advance... And if I am inviting guests over, I make a menu couple of days in advance, so I have enough time in hand, that I can do all the preparation, and my food is ready before time... And I can spend time with the guests, rather than spending it in kitchen.... I wanted to serve them the best food ever.... Though, the recipe got developed accidentally, but I will confess it's the delicious Paneer curry ever....

After taking 1st bite, my friend asked me, " Hey, did you made this curry by yourself, or you ordered it from somewhere"... Well, my only reaction was to smile....My mission accomplished....


Ingredients for 2 people
  1. Paneer - 6-8 pieces per person 
  2. Onions - 1/4 Big onion ( sliced)
  3. Garlic - 4 cloves
  4. Ginger paste - 1 tsp
  5. Tomato paste - 3 tomatoes (medium size)
  6. Cumin Powder - 1 Teaspoon  
  7. Turmeric Powder - 1/2 Teaspoon
  8. Coriander Powder - 1 Teaspoon
  9. Chilli Powder - 1 teaspoon
  10. Cashew - 12-15 pieces
  11. Cream- 1/2 cup 
  12. Cooking oil- 1 Tbsp
  13. Water as reqd.



Directions-
  • Fry sliced Onions in a pan with Zeera, Badi Elaichi and Gol Mirch... Transfer it in a bowl, and let it cool.... 



  • Now, in a blender make a paste of fried onions with garlic, ginger and Cashew....

  • Add 1tbsp of oil to the pan, and let it heat for couple of minutes. Now, add this paste to the heated pan.... Add salt, turmeric powder, Chilli powder, cumin powder, Coriander powder to the pastte and Saute for about 5 minutes....
  • Meanwhile, make a puree of tomato, add in this paste and cook till there is no more raw smell of tomatoes.....

  • Make triangular slices of Paneer.
  • Add the pieces of paneer in this gravy. Stir it softly, as Paneer might can break.
  • Cook on medium heat for another 10 minutes...

  • Switch off the flame, and add 1/2 cup of cream to the curry.....   

  • Enjoy it with tortilla/ roti/naan/ Jeera Rice.....

NOTE - Check out the way to make a Paneer at home.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Mutter ka Nimona (Potato cooked in Peas curry)

It was a cloudy day... Kids were playing.... We planned to go out for lunch.. But, then it started raining.... Taking Kids out was a big risk.... Do not want them to get wet.... 

When I was small, about 7-8 yrs old, I use to wait for rainy season.... And never use to miss 1st rain of the season, getting wet, or I should soaked in rain was my favorite game.... but, then it leads to cold, sneezing, running nose, fever... And then, me in bed for couple of days.... The story was same for almost every year.... I do not want, my kiddo doing same.... Well, she is also like me... It runs in our blood.... She loves to get wet in rain...

So, not to make kids exposed to rain, Bhabhi (sis-in-law) decided to cook lunch at home... And I am glad that she made it.... It was definitely too yummy....

Delicious and yummy way to have veggies of your meal... Do you know, Peas are lots of health benefits... It provides us protein, fiber, anti oxidants, Vitamin C and Vitamin E.... And hence, regular intake of peas helps in weight management, strong immune system, regulates blood sugar....


So, here is a step-by-step new recipe of Nimona for you to try - 



Ingredients-
  1. Onion - 1/2 big (chopped)
  2. Ginger - Garlic paste - 1.2 tsp
  3. Potato - 2 (medium- diced)
  4. Peas - 1 bowl
  5. Salt to taste
  6. Turmeric Powder - 1/2 tsp
  7. Green tomatoes-  3 nos.
  8. Red Tomato - 1 no.
  9. Coriander Powder - 1/2 tsp
  10. Red Chilli Powder - 1/4 tsp
  11. Aamchur Masala - 1/2 tsp
  12. Garam Masala - 1/2 tspsp
  13. Cooking oil - 2 tbsp
  14. Ghee/ Unsalted butter - 1tsp
Directions - 
  • Add cooking oil in a heated pan. Add diced potatoes and fry them, till it turns nice golden brown in color.


  • Now, add chopped onions to the same pan, and fry them...

  • Meanwhile, grind 3/4 bowl of peas with 1/2 cup of water.. and then transfer them in an empty bowl..

  • By this time, ur onions have started turning translucent, add ginger-garlic paste, saute... And add all the dry masala except garam masala...

  • Saute, and grind tomatoes in same grinder..


  • Add this tomato puree to the pan.. and keep sauteing..

  • When, paste starts leaving the edges of Pan, add Peas puree, and mix...

  • Let it simmer for 5 minutes, on medium flame...

  • Now, add fried potatoes and peas...

  • Mix and Cover for 10 minutes, or till the potatoes get cooked...


  • Garnish with hopped Cilantro...

  • Add 1tsp of Ghee or butter to this curry, just before serving...
  • Enjoy with piping hot white rice...

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