Wednesday

Mini-Van Cake


It is Holday time here in US currently and adding to the celebration was my nephew's First Birthday. So as always I was responsible for the cake. Now the main Q? before us was which cake would make the little guys eyes shine with excitement? His brothers shouted in one voice how about making a mini van as he isused to that and this means going out.


Kids sometimes think that their Mom is a Fairy, who can just turn things by waving the magic wand...my son maybe thought the same when he came up with this idea too...MY biggest challenge was assembling the cake and managing the small details. Not being a Auto-Freak, I do not observe the cars as much as my boys do. Beisdes the Birthdya boy likes the colour green.. so we managed this cake which looks like a Mini-Van but does need some TLC. Maybe, I need to make a couple more and start obeserving the minute details.

Till then, HO HO HO

The cake is a baisc cake and by now you must be knowing that I use only whipped cream icing for all my cakes. I like the light tatse of sugar and cream as against the heaviness and sugary tase of buttercream icing.

The link to the whipped cream icng is;

http://indulge-ashscorner.blogspot.com/2009/06/whipped-cream-icing-cake.html

Cheers;
Ash

Thomas Cake

Thomas the Engine is still a Favorite amongst kids all age. MY nephew had this toy from his last birthday cake which was a store brought cake. He loved the toy so much that this time again he wanted it on his cake.


Cake is a basic yellow cake from the box. Lately I have become a great fan of Semi home made coooking. As Sandra Lee( Host of Semi Home Made Show on Food Network) Says, make your life easy, take help when u can..this has stuck to me like honey on bee...and I used  whipped cream icing to frost the cake.


My Resolution for year 2010 is; I will try to make my cakes from scratch and hopefully eggless too.


Cheers

Ash.

Princess Cake

Which Little girl does not like a Princess cake and Princess Birthday??

My Friends daughter is a Princess herself, so We made this cake for her 5th Bday. The theme was elaborate with castle also in the design. But The clock struck 12" and this queen had to make a grand exit from my friends home; so we used the castle prop with the three cute princess cutouts instead.

Anyways.. there is always a next time for the castle and who knows maybe  a  Prince too!!!!

Inspiration behind this cake came from;



The link to the whippe dcream icing is;


http://indulge-ashscorner.blogspot.com/2009/06/whipped-cream-icing-cake.html

Hope all the Queens would love making this cake for their little princessess or even sweet sixteen princessess..

Love
Ash.

Monday

Spaceship

Like all kids his age, my son is also intrested in the life in the outer space and its fantasies.. he imagines life on Mars and pretends to be a astronaut.....Hoefully his dream will be fulfilled when he grows up or he has some other dream to live on....Like all Mothers I adore my boys and try my best to bring their dreams to reality....

I saw this cake on bettycroker.com and  trie dit.. The link to the video is;
http://www.bettycrocker.com/how-to/how-to-videos/Spaceshuttle-video.htm

The link to the whippe dcream icng is;
http://indulge-ashscorner.blogspot.com/2009/06/whipped-cream-icing-cake.html

Now the picture of my cake...


The Cake and filing is same like the Elmo Cake which can be found at;


Elmo cake

As promised I am back with a couple more cakes.. My Younger Son loves; absolutely adores Elmo.. so I made this cake for his 2nd Birthday. I was running out fo time, so this time I made the cakes from the boxed mix.. but added orange extract and substituted butter with Applesauce and used just one egg for the whole cake. Next time I make a cake from the boxed mix, am going to make it eggless.

The filling is Orange Marmalde jkam filling with whipped cream icing.

Whipped Cream icing rec can be found at;

http://indulge-ashscorner.blogspot.com/2009/06/whipped-cream-icing-cake.html

Now back to the Elmo cake.
I did not wnat to use a whole lott of red colour icing on the cake, yet wanted to have the Elmo on the cake, so I altered the design of the cake... Hope you enjoy it as much asThe kids at my party did.....



Hope you all love it as much as we did making it!!!!!!!!!!

Aamzing Scrabble

DILIP VENGSARKAR


When you rearrange the letters:

SPARKLING DRIVE







PRINCESS DIANA

When you rearrange the letters:

END IS A CAR SPIN









MONICA LEWINSKY

When you rearrange the letters:

NICE SILKY WOMAN







DORMITORY:

When you rearrange the letters:

DIRTY ROO M











ASTRONOMER:

When you rearrange the letters:

MOON STARER









DESPERATION

When you rearrange the letters:

A ROPE ENDS IT









THE EYES:

When you rearrange the letters:

THEY SEE













A DECIMAL POINT:

When you rearrange the letters:

IM A DOT IN PLACE









AND FOR THE GRAND FINALE:





MOTHER-IN-LAW:

When you rearrange the letters:

WOMAN HITLER

Tuesday

Lego Cake

The months of November and December are Birthday months in my home...so here goes Lego cake for my 6 Yr odl Son who is a Lego Freak. he is building blocks, houses, garages, gas stations even when he sleeps......I found this cake on bettycroker.com and tried my version with my Fav colours.. as my son would have chosen ONLY BLUE.. Hope you enjoy making this one........

This is a simple retcangulart cake whihc i cut into smaller rectangles and iced the cake with whipped cream icicng... and placed frosted marshmallows to form the blocks... The complete video is on this link;


Have Fun Creating magic in your kitchen.......

Friday


This Diwali I made these Diya's with Crayola Magic clay.....Hope you like them a smuch as I enjoyed making them!!!!

Airport cake

Happy birthday Aryan..
This cake I made for my Nephew Aryan who loves Airplanes and wanted a Airport cake...for his 5th Bday!!!!

Thursday

CTRL+ALT+DEL

Three Steps to END your tension CTRL+ALT+ DEL


1. Control Yourself

2. Look for Alternative Solution

3. Delete the Situation which made you TENSE

Wednesday

Rava Ladoo

Anr Sweet for your palate











You will need
4 Cups Fine Rava/Sooji/Semolina
4 cups Sugar Syrup--One thread syrup
1 Cup Fresh shredded Coconut
1 Cup Ghee
Kesar and elaichi powder

IN a wok, heat the ghee and add the Sooji/Rava.. roast well till the sooji turn pinkish in colour... then add in teh fresh coconut.. and roast for 5 more mins.. Simultaneously make the sugar syrup( Mix sugar and water in equal proportions and reduce over medium heat till one thread syrup is formed ), once the syrup is ready mix with sooji mixture, kesar and elaichi powder and let cool for abt 2 hrs.. once cooled roll into ladoos....and njoiiiiiiiiiiii

Besan Ladoo

Some thing sweet for the tongue... MY Son loves Besan ladoo.... he can smell the Roasted besan from any corner of my house...........
You will need
4 Cups Besan
2 Cups Ghee
2.5 Cups Conf Sugar
Raisins and Elaichi Powder

In a pan heat some Ghee.. then ad dthe Besan.. Roast well till the color changes to light brown...your nose will tell you when the besan is roasted well... Remove from heat. once cooled add in the sugar, elaichi powder and sugar.. and roll into medium size ladoo's....I could make about 28-30 from these proportions.

Shev

I love  love and love Shev.. Make it spicy by adding Red chilli powder or garlic or just about anything... and njoii it with chivda....


I am making Plain this time of the year as Festivals time, I refrain from using a lott of garlic in my food.

You will need
4 cups Besan or Gram flour
2 tbspn Rice Flour
4 tspns Red chili Powder
4 tspns Ajwain
salt and sugar to taste
Water to mix the batter into a thick paste
Oil for frying

In a bowl mix the flour with the red chili powder, ajwain, salt and little water.. make a thick paste..
 the batter should be thicker than what we make for bhajji or bonda...and when you mix it with  a spoon it should require some muscle......Heat the oil required for frying in a wok or kadhai..Take a smuch oil as the shev wil immerse completely, around 2-3 inche soil should be good. When the oil is sufficiently hot, take 3 tbspn oil from that and add it to the batter... this will result in the crisper and lighter shev...use the Chakli machine with the shev disk....and directly pour the shev into the hot oil.... fry till reddish colour, on both sides and drain on a paper towel.

Shev is a idela snack as it cna be mixed into some chivda, or enjoyed as is.. add garlic to the batter, or even dry potato flakes, and njoiiiiiiiiii.

Love Ash.

Pohe or Thin Rice flakes Chivda


Second on my fav list is Thin Rice Flakes Chivda




You will need,

3 lbs Thin Rice Flakes
1 cup Peanuts Roasted
1/2 cup Cashews
1cup Raisins
1 Cup Daliya
1/2 Almonds roasted
Green Chilies-- 10-15
Curry leaves about a handful
Salt Sugar, Corriander and Jeera powder
2 tbspns Chivda Masala- Optional but highly recommended

Regular tadka stuff,--Mustard seeds, Jeera, Hing Turmeric


IN  a wok, dry roast the rice flakes till they get roasted .. meaning if you crush a few flakes, they should form powder... this is a good sign that they are roasted well..
Now remove these roasted flakes in a tray.. let it cool...
in the same wok, heat the oil, add the mustard seeds, jeera, choppedgreen chillies, curry leaves, peanuts, daliya, almonds and cashews.. fry for two mins then add raisins, salt and sugar... again fry for one minute.. lastly add the Roasted thin flakes, chivda masala and stir well.... lastly add the coriander and Cumin powder, Stir well.....
Njoiii this Chivda with onions and tomatoes...or as is.


Bhajani Chakli

NO Diwali Celebration is complete with FARAL. Faral means Snacks.. in short no one eats lunch or diner during diwali.. as we munch on these snacks all day long.....I will start this label with Chakli.. a all time FAV in my home.....

Store brought bahjani Flour- 1 Lb--( You Get it in any Indian Store now..I am in NJ. I have seen Suma Foods Brand in Patel Cash And Carry)
2 cup water boiling
2 tsp Red chili powder
1 tbspn- Sesame seeds
1 Tbspn Butter
1 Tbspn Ajwain
1 tsp Jeera
Salt and sugar to taste
Oil for frying

In a pan, keep the water for boiling, when it comes to a rapid boil, add the chili powder, sesame seeds, jeera, Ajwain, Butter, salt and sugar.. mix well, then add the flour, stir well, cover with a lid and keep aside for 15 mins,
Once cool, knead the flour mix into a soft dough.. and us ethe Chakli making machine to form nice circle of abt 2 inches...
Heat oil in awok, and fry these circles on medium heat. Note that the Oil should be hot not smoking...

Njoii these chakli's...I am sending these to Khushis's Diwali event.
Have a safe and sound Diwali.
Love Ash.

Fat Free Cake

In this cake, I substituted the proportion of Butter with APPLESAUCE.. and The result was much much better. The Icing is whipped Cream icing. THe link to the rec. of whipped cream icing is;

The rec for the cake is;
http://indulge-ashscorner.blogspot.com/2009/02/banana-walnut-cup-cakes.html

Instead of cupcakes, I baked a cake instead....
Many More cakes to come.. so keep watching this spot.. as Next two mnths are Birthday months.....

Tava Pulav



Recently I had  a party at home, and as usual had leftover Vegetable Pulav, IT often happens to me, as I am left with Pulav or Jeera Rice, which by itself is not enough, so I have to make a Curry or Dal again. After cooking for guests I am in no mood to spend time cooking again, so this rec helps me empty my Fridge once in a while and is very popular with kids and elders as well.

You will need;
2 cups cooked rice/ vegetable pulav or jeera rice
1/2 onion chopped
 1 small tomato
1 Tsp Ginger/ Garlic paste
1 Tsp pav bahji Masala
1/2 mix of chopped spriing onion/ corn peas pr any vegetable-- if you are using Rice without vegetable.
Oil for temnpering
Water as needed
Salt and Sugar

In a pan over medium heat, heat oil, add the ginger garlic paste, add the onions, tomatoes fry for 2 mins , then add the vegetables, add little watr and let cook for  1 minute, then add the pav bhaji masala, mix well, add salt and suagr, mix well and lastly add rice with little water. Stir well and cover. Cook for abt 3 mins.  The rice should not be liquidy but slightly sticky. once you get to this stage, the rice is done...garnish with Cilantrio or Spring Onion, add a dash of lime if needed and Njoii Tawa Pulav.

 Traditionally this is a Street food , which I have hogged on many years, when I was in college in Amchi Mumbai. Here in US, I missed those days and came back to my all time Fav food.
I do not have the big Tawa or Flat pan.. so I made it in a skillet/pan...but retained the name as  a  Memory for those bygone days.

Saturday

Zoo Cake

Animal Cake

Animal Cake
This cake I made for a dear Friends Daughters 2nd Bday. She had a Jungle theme. So i made a two layer cake with White and brown layers so when cut it looked like a zebra pattern.. Will try to upload the zebra pattern soon.... Happy birthday R..and Thanks for liking the cake.

Some of my friends wanted to know the decoration of this cake, so here it goes for them,
I made 12 gates from popsicle sticks
and had 5 small plastic animals, and the stones and tress are from anr animal set which I brought from Party City.
To assemble the cake, I took Two 2 layer cakes of 13" 9" and had them sawed for frosting.
IN between the layers I had the icing and pinepapples as filling and frosted the cake and sprinkled some coloured sugar which I got from Regular Grocery stores.
For the Icing rec, see here;
http://indulge-ashscorner.blogspot.com/2009/06/whipped-cream-icing-cake.html
Hope you enjoy making this cake and share pic's here.

swirl cake




Recently MY Son wanted to have a swirl cake as some kid in his school got one for snack. So I made this simple pound cake and mizxe din some choclate sauce. THe swirls did not come out as I had anticipated, But kids were happy so was I. The pound Cake rec is on the blog under the same label. Link to the rec is;
http://indulge-ashscorner.blogspot.com/2009/02/basic-cake.html
Hope you enjoii it as much as we did.

Kairi Punha from applesauce


This Rec is loaned to me by a dear friend "P". She is my Don Chef. She is the BEST for me. Evrytime I am in need of a rec... I contact her.. Thanks P for this amazing rec.

You will need;
Apple Sauce- 1 cup
Sugar 3-4 tsps
Lemon Juice-2-3 tsp
Salt to taste
Saffron/Keshar-Pinch
Elaichi-Pinch
Water- 1 cup

Take Apple Sauce in a pan and let it boil. Stir Continuously to make a light brown/honey coloured mix. Turn off the heat and add the rest of the ingredients, mix well. Let the mix cool before tasting it. Adjust the lemon Juice and Sugar per your taste. Add water, mix well..
Njoii!!!!!!!!!

Veggie BBQ on Skewers


BBQ season sets in as summer starts. Everyone everywhere is doing BBQ. Since we are Veggies, our options are limited for BBQ, hence I made this Veggie BBQ using achar masala.
You will need.
Cauliflower/ broccoli-- Steamed in Microwave for 3 mins.
Red and Green Peppers
Paneer cubes
Onions..
Ginger/Garlic paste-2 tsp
Salt sugar to taste
Oil 2 tbspns
Achhar Masala -- I like medium spice so i used 2 Tspns..

In a bowl mix in oil the ginger garlic paste, aachhar masala and salt and sugar. then marinate the veggies in this sauce for abt 2 hrs.. Arrange on the bamboo skewers. I did it in my oven so preheated the oven @400 and broiled the skewers.

njoii with hot sauce or cool ranch dip...
Tips;; Wet the Bamboo skewers as they will not burn in the oven.

Tuesday

Sabudanyachi Khichadi

Dear Chaitanya, This goes out to you... and all my Bachelor Friends who always relate Sabudnaychi Khichadi to Moms Fasting days...
IT is Typical for mom to keep Fasts on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Chautrthi, and many Special Occasions in a typical Marathi house.. U may Ask when Does she EAT!!!!!!!!!

Well MY Idea of Fasting is Eating all the Awesome FAST foods. I call These Fast Food because, it is easy, fast and not so healthy options........one such to qualify is Sabudana or Sago Khichadi.
U will need some prep and planning for this; Wash the Sabudana and soak in water for 10 mins and Then Remove All water and keep aside covered for abt 6-8 hrs
Take two cups of sabudana( U will need to soak it overnight or at least 6 hrs....
One Medium Boiled Potato-diced
Two Green chillies, Slit
Three Tbspns Peanut Powder.. Roast Peanuts and Run in a Food Processor.. U will have Roasted Peanut Powder
One big Spoon Oil/Ghee
One Tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
One inch Grated Ginger
Salt and Little Sugar To taste
Grated coconut and some Cilantro to garnish

IN a Bowl, Mix the sabudanan, Peanut Powder, ginger, salt and sugar
IN a pan Heat oil over medium Heat, add jeera, add the chillies and diced potatoes.. Cook for few minutes, then add the sabudana mixture
, cover and cook for abt 5-7 mins...stir in between, The sabudana will stick to the bottom of the pan...keep scrapping.. if needed add more oil.. u will see the sabudana change texture and become transparent....this indicate it is fully cooked. Remove form heat, garnish with coconut and cilantro.. serve hot with cold curd...NJoiiiiiiiii

Thursday

Moog Dal Khichadi With vegetablesa and Kadhi

Mood Dal Khichadi with veggie's and hot Kadhi are my passport to heaven. IT gives me unexplainable comfort to post this recipe for my young bachelor friends as this recipe can be twisted and turned as per what you have on hand. The main ING being Mood Dal and Rice.. To add to the health content i sue Green Split Moog Dal, as the husk form the lentils gives it the fiber, we lack so much in vegetarian food.
Try this hot hot khichadi with Kadhi on any rainy stormy or snowy day....roasted papad or some chips on the side and you are in HEAVEN.............it is that relaxinggggggggggggggggg

You will need; for two ppl
1 cup rice..washed
3/4th cup Moog dal-washed
1 cup Veggies- Mix of peas/corn/carrots/cauliflower/broccoli..anything you have on hand if nothing; tastes equally better without any veggies
few Curry leaves
2 green chillies
1tspn coriander powder
1tspn cumin powder
1 tspn ginger/garlic paste
jaggery and salt to taste
Oil and things for Tadka

3 cups hot water

--In a wok, heat some oil, add the mustard seeds,cumin, hing, green chilies, ginger/garlic paste, curry leaves and let it splutter, then add turmeric powder then the veggies...fry for few minutes, then add the rice and dal and roast the mix for 5 mins... then add the hot water and salt and some jaggery, add the corriander and cumin powder stir once and cover and let cook for abt 15-20 mins...njoii this Khichadi with kadhi...

For the Kadhi you will need;
1 cup Yogurt
1tspn Besan
2 Cups water
one big piece of ginger grated
Usual Tadka things
Few Curry leaves
Two cloves,
Jaggery
One tspn sugar
salt
and pinch of black pepper powder

-- Take yogurt in a bowl add water and besan.. grated ginger and mix well, as no lumps should be formed...heat this mix in a pot.. to this add the jaggery, salt, sugar, cloves and pinch of black pepper powder....side by side make the tadka..

Tadka;
then in a pan heat some oil.. ad mustard seeds, cumin seeds, hing and green chilies.. let them splutter.. then ad this to the yogurt mix...and boil the whole thingggg.. garnish with cilantro and enjoii this with the khichadi or plain rice....

thght for the day!!!

“We are what our thoughts have made us; so take care about what you think. Words are secondary. Thoughts live; they travel far"

Monday

Whipped cream icing cake


Whipped Cream icing can be made by using simply Heavy Cream and Conf Sugar,, The Rec is as
Follows..
One Cup heavy Cream
Half Cup Conf Sugar
IF desired One Packet Unflavoured Gelatin dissolved in water.

Take a bigger bowl and keep some ice cubes in that.. Over the cubes place anr bowl. Take one cup cream and add sugar and Gelatin( if needed )... and beat with electric mixer for about 5-7 mins on medium. The icing is ready.


Frosting the cake..
Cool the cake and cut layers as you wish....than place one layer on the plate.. moist with sugar syrup.. use the icing and spread evenly....over this place anr layer... u can add pineapples chunks..fresh fruits chunks over the icing....repeat and frost sides till u have done so with the desired layers of cake.. decorate the top with same icing or shaved chocolate or anything your heart wishes........i used choc sauce and strawberries for this cake........

Friday

Semolina Upma

The same Rava Vegetable Upma recipe can be twisted to make Semolina or Shevai Upma....

Take one cup Shevai/Semolina.. I use mostly Bombino ones.....Fry them in little oil and keep aside...
Than make the tadka. Add the veggies...and add around 2.5 cups water to one cup shevai to this....I add a little Ketchup and Little Green Chutney(Sandwich Chutney)...little chili powder, salt and sugar and once the mix starts boiling..add the fried shevai/Semolina.....and cook till all the water is absorbed and the semolina gets cooked....MY Sons calls it Indian Pasta.....But Tastes amazing.....

Wednesday

Inspiring....

Apologising does not mean that you are wrong nor that the other is right. It only means that you value the relationship more than YOUR EGO!

Tuesday

Rava Vegetable Upma

MY friend a very young friend just landed to USA for his further education. So this gave me an idea to help him by writing some rec.. which are easy to make and yet healthy and FAST!!!So all rec's under this label are a gift to many new and inspiring chefs....

Reva Upma;
You will need;
One cup Rava/Sooji
One small Onion..(diced means chopped into small pieces)
One tomato-diced
One green chili..cut into small pieces
3 -4 curry leaves..kadi putta..
one tbspn oil
one tsp salt and one tsp sugar

Ina pan over low heat..take one tspn oil.. now add the sooji or rava.. and roast this.. stir continuously.. the sooji will turn slightly brown.. now remove this on a dish...now take the remaining oil.. make tadka..(Optional)....now add the onions, tomatoes.. any veggies like cauliflower florets/carrots/beans/corn/peas( veggies is optional).... now add the chilies and the curry leaves...lastly add the roasted sooji.. Simultaneously..in anr pan take two cups of water add grated ginger if you like...boil this well..add the hot water to the sooji mixture nd cover with a lid...cook for abt 5-7 mins till it gets cooked well..the upma is ready.. this is enough for one person.

Monday

Batate Wade


You will need


5 medium potatoes. boiled and peeled.
one inch ginger
6 cloves garlic
4 Green chili or 2 tspn red chili powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp coriander powder
1 small onion
Salt and sugar as per taste


For the cover
1 and 1/2 cup Besan/Gram Flour
1/2 Rice Flour
1 tsp Cumin and Coriander powder
1 tsp Red Chili Powder
1 tsp Ajwain seeds and salt



Oil for frying


Make the ginger garlic and green chili paste. Grate the boiled potatoes and add the ginger paste, cumin and coriander powder, onions, salt and sugar....mix well

In a bowl, take the flour and add the powders and ajwain seeds. add the salt and water and make thick paste... now make small balls of the potato mix and dip in this paste and fry in very hot oil...


njoyy on a snowy day or rainy day...with some Green Chutney
Brings back old memories.. of Mumbai meri Jaan!!!!!!!!

Love Ash

Kothimbir/Cilantro Wadi


This is a Maharashtrian fav snack. can be a side dish.. appetizer or T time special....very easy to make.. takes about 15 mins...You can make it a low Cal dish or a fried one.....Depends on one's choice....

You will need;

One bunch Kothimbir/Cilantro--washed and coarsely chopped
1 cup rice flour
1 cup Gram Flour/Besan
1 tsp red chili powder
1 tsp ginger garlic paste
1 tsp cumin/coriander powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp lime juice
salt and sugar as per choice
water as needed
dhokla stand.. grease the dhokla plates.. in a cooker keep three cups water for steaming...

Now in a Bowl add the cilantro leaves.. add the ginger garlic, chili powder, turmeric and coriander ans cumin powder.. mix well..add salt and sugar.. now add the flours...use water and mix well..till the mix is pourable consistency...In the well greased dhokla plates.. pour the batter and steam for 10-12 min or till the knife comes out clean...cut and make small pieces like dhokla...
Traditionally now you would nee dto deep fry.. but you can either shallow fry this or eat as is...

Deep fried Wadi's are amazingggggggggggg





Variation..

replace cilantro with cabbage or Bottle Gourd.. For Bottle Gourd.. adjust the water proportion....enjoyyy

Friday

YYYYYYYYYY?????

Who Am I???YYYYYYY MEEEEEEEE
This is a question that has haunted me since ages.. When I was a kid.. I was asked; Who am I???. and I would say... I am a girl.. who is free to think wht she wants to think, free to do what she wants to dooo.. but today after many years I still come back to the same Q....Am i really Free to do wht I feel like.. Am i really free.. Free this word has many aspects to it.. meanings to it.. what is the purpose of our life.. why did god create humans...why not make them like any other animals/creatures..i see people seeking god....people join iscon movement.. saying thy are followers of specific group, organization...wht does this mean.. are they not followers of humanity..human race was supposed to be one.. was this god's design when he created humans. so many Q's which have no answers...As kids we were taught recitals from Geeta.. at that tender age we did memorize them, without daring to ask the meaning...all the stories that we were told had good guys killing bad guys.. all the mythological stores from Mahabharata and Ramayana had blood shed, war, demons. and yet we do call our GOd's GODDDD.. OMG...what an impact did we have.. God was justified in killing bad guysss.. and we do it we have cops running after us.....y this discrimination??? after all did GOd not want us to have ba dguys washed out...my thoughts run helter skelter when my grey matter starts asking Q's....thees Q's have no basis.. they keep jumping from one chapter to another..my thoughts are like a wild bee.. with no less flowers to chase.....so much work so little time.. again Y do we meet people.... is there any purpose with which we come across them.. many many Q's and again so little space.........so many Y's and so few ANS's

Sunday

Pizza-Home made base with Wheat flour

My love for freshly baked pizza's made me go through the efforts to bake a home made pizza. The health factor added a bonus.. Whole wheat pizza was a n additional plus for me to try this....Hope you all like it..

Dough;
1 cup Maida
1 cup wheat flour
Oil
Salt to taste
Sugar And
1 Tbspn Yeast

Mix the dry flours together and add salt and sugar. Then add yeast. Mix in warm water and apply oil. Keep aside for 30 ins. Then on cookie sheets roll out the pizza base and seal in plastic bag and keep aside for 8 hrs. Bake for 15 mins @ 350-400F



Sauce;
One cup pasta sauce plus one tsp garlic powder..heat and keep aside.

Take on cup cabbage and one carrot. Shred both and in a pan heat little oil, add onions, and add the cabbage mix. Cook for while. Add Pepper Flakes and salt and let cool.

Now arrange the pizza, apply sauce, then the cabbage mix, then peppers and top with Cheese and bake till cheese melts at 400F for about 10-15 mins

Thursday

Puran Poli and Katachi Amti

Holi re holi!!
Purnachi Poli!!

So here goes my rec for Puran Poli;;so many memories are attached to this dish.. where do I start.. may be birthdays..special occasions, My mom always made and still does make these fab poli's...everyone has a different version, but I follow Mum's rec to the T....

you will need
For the Puran;
3 cups Chana Dal
2 cups Gul or Jaggery
1 cup sugar

IN pressure cooker, add the washed dal and 7-8 cups water. Pressure cook for abt 7 whistles. let cool. once cool, strain the dal so that all water is separated and the dal is dry. Once again take this in a cooker and add gul and sugar. on low heat, cook this till the mixture starts leaving sides and starts sticking to the spoon. Keep stirring this from the time you put it on heat. You will reach a point when your arms will talk to you. The mixture will look dry and The spoon if made to stand will stand on it's own....your puran is done...

for the cover;
2 cups Flour/Atta
2 cups All purpose Flour
Generous Oil..and water

Make the dough like regular roti...cover with liberal amount of oil.. keep aside for 2 hrs.

.. Make balls of puran and the dough and then like stuffed parathas, make the poli's....on a medium heated tava, cook the poli well... apply ghee and serve hot...

For Katachi Amti;
You will need
Kat-water from the dal
Jaggery
Tamarind Juice/paste
Curry leaves
Red chili powder
Peppercorn
Dry Coconut powder
Cumin seeds
Cinnamon stick
Cloves
Oil
Mustard
Hing
Salt to taste

Use the water you drained from the dal ( we call this water as "Kat") to this add one big tennis ball size of puran, little jaggery, little tamarind paste, red chili powder, curry leaves, salt and keep aside.
In a pan, roast Cumin seeds and dry coconut with cloves, peppercorns, Cinnamon stick. after the mix turns brown, grind it into powder. add this to the dal mix. Boil this mixture for about 10 mins. Garnish with Cilantro if you like.

This amti/dal goes well with Puran poli as well as Plain Rice with a dollop of ghee.

Wednesday

Peppermint Cookies

I know this is long due rec.. I had made them in December.. after the Christmas party my kids had at school. I ended up with so much candy cane, that I could not let it stand on my counter, as candy left alone is itself a sign of danger when kids are aroundddd......so i decide to make these cookies...
You will need;
8 tablespoons Butter
1 and 1/2 cup sugar
approx 2 cups All purpose Flour
Orange extract
Candy cane crushed
Vanilla Essence
Little milk

Take cold butter and make small pieces of that. to this add sugar and cream well. then add the flour and the orange extract. little vanilla and mix to form soft dough. Add milk if needed.
Cover in plastic wrap and chill for abt 30 mins...
After that roll into half cm thick and cut cookies of the desired shape.... I chose Heart as my little Helper wanted hearts that day...and bake at 300 F till they turn slight brown...for abt 7-8 mins...
enjoiiiiiiiiii

Sweet and Sour Veggies

MY love for Indian Chinese had made me try this rec..I absolutely love Chinese food specially the food That I used to hog on when I was in college.. my nutritious lunch as we called it.....



you will need..


one big onion diced
one green bell pepper-diced
10 baby corns--small dices
half red bell pepper
cauliflower florets/broccoli florets..
one inch ginger-finely chopped
3 cloves garlic- finely chopped

For the sauce

one tbspn soy sauce
one tbsn..chili garlic paste
two tbspns tomato ketchup
salt and sugar to taste...

Mix all the sauces ..add salt and sugar.. and keep aside

In a wok.. heat oil...add the ginger and garlic....fry for a min or so.... then add veggies.. and on a high flame...stir fry them...once the veggies are half cooked,,... add the sauce's... little water and cook them..till the veggies are cooked but do not loose the crunch.... finally if you like add one tspn corn flour, mixed in water and cook for one minute..


The sweet and sour veggies are ready...Njoiii with steamed plain white rice or some Hakka Noodles here  or Tava Pulav Here

Love Ash.



Hakka Noodles








You will need;
One packet cooked Hakka noodles..Cook as per packet instructions..
1/2 green and red bell pepper..cut in long strips
one carrot-shredded
one small cup french beans--cut like pepper
spring onions..cut in ribbons..one cup-4oz.
One inch Ginger--finely chopped
3-4 cloves garlic finely chopped
Salt and sugar to taste

beans sprouts optional....
corn optional

soy sauce one tbsn and one tbsn chili garlic sauce

In a wok, heat oil on a high flame, add ginger and garlic.. fry for one min...then add onions.. peppers..and remaining veggies....add the sauces..salt and sugar..
stir continuously...lastly add the cooked noodles.. and fry for anr couple of min's...serve hott!!!

Black Forest Cake



This cake I made specially for my Three adorable men.. my three musketeers// for rec foll Vah Chef's rec.
Many of my Friends have Been asking me for the rec.. The recipe is simple.. bake two chocolate cakes... and whipped cream icing. See my blog for rec for whipped cream icing...THe link to the rec. of whipped cream icing is;


http://indulge-ashscorner.blogspot.com/2009/06/whipped-cream-icing-cake.html


Assembling the cake is an art...
You Will need.. choc cake layer minimum two..
Shaved Dark Chocolate--One bar will do
Whipped Cream icing.. Minimum 2 cups...
Cherries for decoration
half cup sugar syrup
Take the plate.. place one layer of the cake.. prick with a fork. moist with sugar syrup...you can add half cup Rum to the sugar syrup....then ice with cream.. spread chopped cherries.. place anr layer of the cake.. moist with sugar syrup.. and ice the sides... and the top... make nice borders or laces with the cream... then dust the chocolate shavings over the cake top and sides.... and arrange cherries on the top....
NJoii the Black Forest cake.........Hope you will update me on how it tasted and pics if possible........

Friday

More for the Mania...


Here I am posting a few more pictures of the cakes which I made over the last few months.

This one i made for my sons 5th B'day...he wanted a "Mator on job" Cake.




















This one was for R and M's Baby shower.
This cake was for dear friend's daughter when she visited me on her 8th month b'day


This cake, I made for my kids to welcome summer.

This is an eggless cake. I wanted to make a simple cake with no eggs.

The rec. goes as;

1/2 tin condensed milk (200gms)

2 3/4 cups plain flour (280gms)

1 tsp baking powder1/2 tsp baking soda (soda bicarb)

2 tsp icing sugar1/2 cup butter melted (60gms)

1/2 tsp vanilla essence100 ml milk100 ml soda water


Method

Sieve flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, all together 2 to 3 times. Keep aside. Pour condensed milk in a bowl. Add the butter, and beat well till smooth. Add the flour spoon by spoon, mixing into the condensed milk mixture. In between, add milk as required if the butter begins to get too stiff.[Stir the mixture in one direction only all the while. This will incorporate more air and make the cake lighter].Once all the flour is used up, beat the batter as above till light (5-7 minutes). Add the soda and mix gently till smooth. Pour into a greased cake tin. Do not smooth with a spoon etc. If the consistency is right this will not be needed. Pre-heat over to 300o c. Place tin inside. Bake at 200o c for 5-7 minutes and 150o c till done. (35 to 40 minutes). Poke with a skewer and check. Cool a little. Invert on wire rack. Cool completely before doing icing if any.

And this was for my young friend who turned "1" in January, 2009.




I must specially mention here, that his MOM is my BEST Buddy and my inspiration. She juggles Kids, Home and School so well, that one wonders if she has extra sets of hands...she had planned a Zoo Theme for his b'day and had even made the animal faces cutouts from scratch. To match up with her art and creativity, I had to put the "xtra" mile in my cake too. I made the icing using fresh cream.the Rec. for stabilized whipped cream icing will follow in later posts..

Stir Fry idli


I am a big fan of this Snack, an all time favourite with my kids, DH and anyone I know. Everyone likes Idli. My younger son goes to a daycare and his teachers it seems are a big fan of Indian Food. I always thought that Indian food was not liked by many Americans coz of the spice and chili that we used. So here I made this Stir Fried Idli for my Son's Teachers on a cold and chilly morning, hoping that the aroma and flavour of spice would warm up their day. After all they do so much for my little hero, this was a very little something from me.You will need;Coin Idli or Bite size pieces of Idli-- You can use leftovers if you have on handOnions, Capsicum, Red Peppers and any other vegetable that you like which can be used in any other stir fired rec..I had Peppers and onions which I had chopped for some thing else handy..Salt to taste, little sugar, and PAV BHAJI Masala.Crank up the heat on a big wok, Add little oil, jeera if u like, and veggies, on high heat caramelize them, then add salt, sugar and masala, fry a little, and then lastly add idli's... Stir fry for 2-3 mins... and Voila.. u have the stir fried idli's... THe spice can be adjusted to your taste, garlic and ginger can be added... Since this was my first exp in cooking for Americans, I went shy on the spice and chili and also number of ingredients ..."I am sending this entry to "A Healthy Bite" event hosted by Rachana at "The Gourmet Launchpad" (http://thegourmetlaunchpad.blogspot.com/2009/01/healthy-bite.html)"

Gul Poli

Thanks H4MM for this awesome prize. I greatly appreciate it!!!!!!!!!!!!



Month of January and everyone starts buzzing about the festival of Makar Sankranti, which is celebrate don 14Th of January, every year. I associate festivals with the special food dishes which we make. For Sankrant, we make Til Wadi, Til Gul and Gul Poli. Yes, by now you must have guessed it right, that the main ingredient is Til or Sesame seed and Gul or Jaggery. I will be posting the rec for Gul Poli and Til wadi which is my all time favourite. I have to absolutely have these two things or the start of the year is bad for me. know wht I am saying!!!!!
Coming back to this rec...brings back fond and great memories from childhood. My moms sister is an expert in making these Roti's. I always picture her making and stacking them on her dining table, and all kids literally digging into them, and making them disappear in a matter of minutes. I try to match up to her, but guess, that I will need to make hundreds and hundreds, before I match the perfection.

You will need the following along with a lot of Patience;

For the cover;
4 cups Whole wheat flour
4 tbspn Fine sooji
1/2 cup oil-- smoking hotttt
Salt and little water

For the stuffing;
1/2 cup Besan or Gram Flour
1/2 cup oil
3 cups Gul or Jaggery preferably mashed
1 cup roasted sesame seeds powder

Elaichi- 1tspn
Milk if needed

Method;

For cover
In a pan, heat a the oil, till it smokes, Add it to the flour and sooji mixture, add the salt and water and knead into a hard dough. Keep it covered for 2 hours.

For Stuffing
In a pan heat the oil and roast the gram flour till it turns slight brown. Cool the mixture. When at room temperature add the mashed gul and dry sesame powder and elaichi and mix well, try to remove all lumps. Add the milk and knead into a soft dough.

Now that u have both the the cover and stuffing ready, it time to roll the roti's.
Divide the cover into 16 smaller balls and the stuffing into 8 equal parts. Make sure that you have all the balls of the same size. Take one ball of the cover and make a small roti, similarly make anr roti of the second cover ball, in between keep one roti made from the stuffing ball, now seal the ends on the roti and very lightly roll the roti. Using flour, roll it to nearly 7-8 inches in diameter. Heat the frying pan and roast the gulpoli on the frying pan on both sides till it turns brownish. Serve hot with ghee or eat crispy gulpoli after 4-5 hours. To store, cool completely and store in a air tight box.