Sunday, September 12, 2010

Cakes and Bowls

Recipe: Frosted Cupcakes

It's cake-time again :). I just love making cakes. And do you know what is the best part about making cakes? After setting the cake to bake (Disclaimer: The next part of the sentence is not for the faint-hearted), licking the mixing bowls for any and every trace of the cake batter. Sounds gross? My family thinks so too. So I have the mixing bowls all to myself and I purposely leave behind generous amounts of cake batter in the bowl :).

This time, I again baked cupcakes simply because it takes lesser baking time. And also, I wanted to experiment on different topping options. So I decided on a plain vanilla cupcake. And for the frosting, after much searching for recipes and ingredients, I finally settled for the frosting recipe suggested by my brother. It is posted at the Tasty Kitchen here. I reduced the amount of sugar though.

I dipped a couple of the frosted cupcakes in chocolate shavings. Actually, I found it very difficult to scrape out the chocolate shavings from a bar of cooking chocolate. Even after 15 min of hard work, I could just get enough for 2 cupcakes! So I didn't bother wasting anymore of my precious time scraping a chocolate bar. Next I got some peanut candy and crushed it coarsely with my trusty pestle and dipped some of the cupcakes in crushed peanut candy. I also left a couple of cupcakes plain as there are a few plain cake lovers in my house.

The two cupcakes with chocolate shavings sprinkled got over before I could look for my camera so I don't have pictures them. All in all, the cupcakes were wonderfully soft and moist. The frosting was indeed brilliant. And the chocolate shavings and crushed peanut candy added an interesting bite to it.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Elusive Addiction

Recipe: Baklava

August was such a busy month with so many things happening and loads of work, it was impossible to even think about blogging.

I’m back and I am so happy to bring you my favourite sweet of all times. According to me, it should be declared “the king of sweets” – it is the Baklava.

Growing up in the Middle-east, I was always fascinated with Middle-eastern foods - especially their grilled meat, fresh salads, hummous, shawarma, baklava, etc. Baklava used to be a regular at our house during parties and get-togethers. No celebration was complete without it.

After coming back to India, I have missed the baklava and the shawarma the most. We do find a poor replica of the shawarma in Bangalore and Kerala. It is not even close to the actual Arabic Shawarma but at least there is something. The baklava, however, was impossible to find. Whenever family or friends from the Middle-east visited us and if ever anyone dared to ask me if I wanted anything from there, the baklava and the shawarma would top my list (and chocolates, of course!). And those kind people brought those delicacies for poor (baklava-and-shawarma-starved) me all the way from the middle-east.

Ever since my parents gifted me an oven (they know I love to bake), I’ve been trying to find recipes to make baklava at home. All the baklava recipes that I looked at, needed store-bought phyllo dough. And I couldn’t find phyllo dough anywhere here in the stores of Bangalore (What a tragedy for a baklava-addict!). I started to feel envious of all the people who had easy access to phyllo dough.


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