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Thursday, March 26, 2015

Banana Pecan Mini Bread

Banana Pecan Mini Bread Main
I am smiling here...will tell you the reason. The thought me/myself finding ways to eat banana is the reason for why I am laughing. My hubby always get bananas at home and most of the times he does not eat. I always ask him whether he is getting them so that I can make anything out of it. ;) because I wait until they get very ripe, the main reason is that I wait if someone would eat it. To include them in any recipes, the more ripe it is the better.

Banana Pecan Mini Bread 3Banana Pecan Mini Bread 7
This time it was not exceptional as always. I waited and no one ate, more over I wanted to make something simple as I was expecting guests at home and didn't have much time to think of something else. So was happy to make this spongy and soft bread.

Banana Pecan Mini Bread 1Banana Pecan Mini Bread 2
Usually I try to add half of white flour and half of wheat, but this time didn't do any substitutions. It came out very soft and spongy and delicious. I also usually add walnuts to most of my recipes with bananas, but this time wanted to substitute with pecans. Adding pecans didn't make it different but it was good as usual.

Banana Pecan Mini Bread 4Banana Pecan Mini Bread 9
I doubled the amount of ingredients as I had to make more and also baked in these cute little pie molds just to take some pics which is always inviting and lot better to look than in a loaf pan. The amount of Ingredients will just be right for making 1 loaf of bread.

Banana Pecan Mini Bread 8Banana Pecan Mini Bread 10

Banana Pecan Mini Bread 11
Banana Pecan Mini Bread 6

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones

Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones MainWanted to make something new, exciting and easy dessert for Christmas which would mainly be exciting for Anush to enjoy. I had a box or unused rainbow cereals and wanted to use it in creating a dessert. But none of the recipes impressed me. I don't remember how I ended up getting this dessert recipe and I was totally carried away how awesome it looked and how easy it was.Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones 3
Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones 6Anush likes to eat these cereals, so thought of making this instead as I was not sure if I make anything with the other cereal that he does not eat anymore he would like it. I was sure if I make this he will be lot more excited and happy as all the ingredients are his favorite.
Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones 7Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones 9Wow I am amazed by the thought that people around the world are so creative and create awesome things that I could have never imagined. don't you think we have so many things to learn? Well I have to convince myself that no one can be a master of any thing in particular and if someone is he should be someone to worship. :)
Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones 5This dessert is a winner in my heart. I really enjoyed each and every step of making this dessert. I was so relaxed, made this recipe watching TV and slowly and still it looked wonderful and so neat and so beautiful. I am expressing too much? NO, it's true. It's as delicious as it looks beautiful. This was the compliment I got from my son, so I am more than happy.
Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones 2
Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones 8

Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones 1

1/4 Cup Nutella / Chocolate Spread
1/2 Cup Peanut Butter
6 Pretzel Sticks (I used Chocolate Finger Cookies instead)
3 Tbsp Butter (room temperature/soft)
3/4 to 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
2 Cups Kellog's Krave Double Chocolate Cereals

In a bowl mix all the ingredients except the pretzel stick with a wooden spoon and later make it to a ball of dough.
make six equal parts and shape like a cone with each ball with your hands.
Insert a pretzel stick or finger cookies or anything that is long or cylinder shape and again shape it back to a cone and place it on a flat surface/serving plate.
Now arrange the lower part of the cone with the cereals and work your way upwards in a circle and also on the top.
Make sure that these cereals are 45 degree angles like pointing upwards and closer to each other so that the cone base is not shown much.
Make each one of the pine cone as above and arrange them on the serving plate.
Add some powdered sugar in a sieve and dust the powdered sugar all over the cereal pine cone and little bit on the serving plate to make it look like snow.

Decorate with Christmas decorations around and enjoy this delicious simple dessert.

Snowy Chocolate Pine Cones 1

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Strawberry Vanilla Gelato

Strawberry Vanilla Gelato MainBerries and Ice Cream does not stop me from eating them any time of the year. You might be thinking I named the recipe "Gelato" and I am talking about "Ice Cream"?? Well, I did read about gelato and ice cream earlier, but this time when I was naming the recipe I really wanted to know the reason. Basically it's all Ice and Cream, but few factors and levels makes the difference.
Strawberry Vanilla Gelato 11Once I knew the difference, I always wanted to try and eat gelato first out of a store bought one and then try it at home and definitely adding my own twist to it. :) But as and always homemade is always the best and so comforting when you know that it's worth the time.
Strawberry Vanilla Gelato 8I would like to explain here the difference as per my understanding. As I say it always, if you would like to read and want to the difference; you are most welcome, else you can skip this short story. :)
Strawberry Vanilla Gelato 2Ice Cream:
Ice cream contains more air, milk fat, eggs and cream when compared to gelato. It has more calories and fewer carbohydrates, which is obvious with more of the fatty ingredients. Generally higher in saturated fat which varies by ingredients and type of milk.
Strawberry Vanilla Gelato 3Gelato:
In "Italian" Gelato means "Frozen" and refers to a type of soft, dense, low-fat ice cream that has traditionally made by hand using milk, sugar, cream and fruits and nuts. It has fewer calories, less saturated fat than ice cream and is dense in taste and probably uses more sugar to prevent the ice from crystallization.
Strawberry Vanilla Gelato 4 Don't get alarmed by reading this, because anything you eat, if you concentrate on the amount of intake and stick to eating just as much as you need, then everything is healthy and good. Since both have milk and cream it's good.
Strawberry Vanilla Gelato 5Let's go to the recipe now.....I made condensed milk at home. Click on the link for the recipe for Homemade Condensed Milk. I have explained 3 different ways to make it. I didn't want the ice cream to look all red, but little specks of strawberry should be seen, so I cooked the strawberries in syrup and made it very thick so that I just swirled the thick mixture into the cream and condensed milk and later mixed it bit more when it hardened.
Strawberry Vanilla Gelato 7p
1 Box Fresh Strawberries
1/2 to 1/3 cup Sugar
14 oz Sweetened Condensed Milk

1 box Heavy Whipping Cream

1. Clean and cut the strawberries into half or smaller pieces as you like.
2. In a sauce pan add the strawberries and sugar. If using frozen strawberries, first thaw them. If using strawberries in sugar, thaw it and no need to add any extra sugar.
3. Bring to a medium high flame, when the liquid starts to bubble, reduce it to medium low and cook it until all most of the water is gone and it should look like a thick syrup for about 15-20 mins.
4. Allow it to cool to room temperature.
5. Meanwhile with a hand/stand mixer add cold heavy whipping cream and whisk it until you get soft peeks.
6. Now add sweetened condensed milk and mix just until well blended.
7. Transfer this whipped cream mixture into a freezer safe box.

8. Add the strawberry mixture and swirl it all over using a spoon or fork.

* You can use frozen strawberries or frozen strawberries in sugar.
* If using frozen strawberries in sugar, check and avoid adding more sugar to both the berries and the cream.

* I used Homemade Sweetened Condensed Milk (Click Link to view recipe:
Strawberry Vanilla Gelato 11

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Homemade Sweetened Condensed Milk | 3 Ways

Homemade Condensed Milk Main
I had never thought of myself making condensed milk at home. Want to know the reason ?? Well, there is no such particular reason, but always until now as and when I get a thought of making any recipe that called for condensed milk; always went and got store bought, as easy as that right?? Well maybe not anymore or at least until I have the patience and time, else no worries too. 
Homemade Condensed Milk 6Which one of the Ingredient reminds you of in making easy desserts? I bet it's "Condensed Milk". So how about making it home ahead and using it in recipes. This condensed milk recipe with so many method options is very handy especially during this holiday season to make desserts in minutes. In internet I have seen many recipes to make condensed milk at home earlier, but as I said never thought that I would make it at home one day. Guess what, now it's time. But which method do I do was a big question. That is the reason behind this recipe, which gives you 3 options and ways to make it at home. so each way is bit more time consuming than the other and you can choose which ever method suits you. The best part of making this at home would be that you can control the amount of sugar that you use. By doing so, you might not get the exact results as you get with a store bought but you get more than that with respect to satisfaction and comfort.
Homemade Condensed Milk 3Sweetened Condensed milk is nothing but reduced milk and sugar. This can be very handy to whip up easy, fast and delicious dessert recipes in no time.
Homemade Condensed Milk 4Now let's go to the 3 ways of making this at home starting with the easiest method first.
 Homemade Condensed Milk 5Homemade Condensed Milk 1

Easy Method:
1 can Evaporated Milk
1 1/2 Cup Sugar

Moderate Method:
1 pkg / 1 Cup Dry Milk Powder
1 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Boiling Water
1/4 Cup / 1/2 stick Butter (Melted)
1 tsp Vanilla Extract

Hard Method:
1 1/2 cup Whole Milk
1/2 or 2/3 Cup Sugar
2 Tbsp Butter
1 tsp Vanilla Extract

Easy Method:
In a small sauce pot, combine evaporated milk and sugar, keep stirring until it comes to a boil.
Off the flame and allow it to cool and store it in a clean air tight glass jar.

Moderate Method:
In a mixer blender add dry milk powder, sugar, butter and boiling water and blend it until you see no lumps and it's smooth and creamy.
Mix in the vanilla extract.
Allow it to cool and store it in a clean air tight glass jar.

Hard Method:
In a heavy bottom sauce pot, add milk and sugar. Bring it to a boil.
Now lower the flame as much as you can and make a note of the level of milk.
Reduce the milk to half of the level. It might take anywhere from 2 hrs or little more or less.
Make sure you stir is occasionally.
After it reduces to half, off the flame. Stir in the butter and vanilla extract.

Allow it to cool and store it in a clean air tight glass jar.

* I haven't tried substituting sugar with any other sweetener, so you can try that too.
Homemade Condensed Milk 2

Monday, January 26, 2015

Mini Rasgulla |Cottage Cheese Balls in Saffron Sugar Syrup

Mini RasgullaI always plan for something and until I push myself, I don't get to do it on time. Well this recipe falls into that category, in which I could not push myself to post it. I am in between moving from blog to website and in between there were other priorities which didn't make this possible for me to post this recipe on time. I actually planned to post this for Diwali :( but I think I will end up posting this during Christmas or New Year. :) Well not bad right!! :)
Mini Rasgulla 4This is my second attempt on Rasgullas. I remember making it way back when I got newly married. I guess at that time I didn't wait enough for the sugar to soak up into rasgullas and so didn't find it so tasty. So probably from then never tried to make it at home again. But now I think this is a long wait. So I decided to at least make it and not worry too much about posting it on time. 
Mini Rasgulla 6Mini Rasgulla 7I made these in the same method as I did years back with pressure cooker and really to say till now I don't know any other method. But totally happy with the results this time. I didn't want to do a whole bunch of them, so decided to make them small so that they are at least more in numbers.
Mini Rasgulla 5This is a very easy recipe and can be made ahead of time. I made fresh paneer at home first, then let it drain the excess water for about 30 mins or so. After that knead the paneer to make it soft. Meanwhile made the sugar syrup, and at the same time shaped the paneer into balls. Drop these balls in the syrup which I made in the pressure cooker and cooked it for about 7-8 mins or for one whistle. First kept it on high flame then reduced it to medium flame and cooked the rest. 
Mini Rasgulla 3The main thing to make sure is that you have to wait atleast 4-6 hours after you make these rasgullas before eating, so that they get enough time to soak up all the sugar syrup.
Steps to make Rasgullas
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Mini Rasgulla

Mini Rasgulla 2
 Mini Rasgulla 8

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Paalu Undurallu

To make Undurallu:
1 cup Rice Flour/Idiyappam Flour
2 cups Water/Milk
1/4 tsp Salt
To make Paa1:
1 cup Jaggery
2 1/2 cups Milk
1/2 cup Water/Milk
1/4 tsp Cardamom Powder
Note: You can also add Coconut milk
Undurallu recipe:
1. In a pan add water/milk and salt, bring it to a boil, add the rice flour and off the flame.
2. Mix it well with a wooden spoon, making sure that there are no lumps.
3. Allow it to cool a bit, now dip your hands it either oil or water and make small size balls and place them in a plate and cover with a damp cloth until you make the paal.
Paal recipe:
1. In a sauce pot add milk and when it comes to a boil add the jaggery. I used powdered jaggery, so didn't had to make a syrup out of it (I meant didn't have to melt it and strain it for sand/dirt).
2. You can also reduce the milk to half, if you want more thicker version of the paal, but make sure you don't add the rice balls before reducing the milk.
3. Now add the rice balls and cook it for more 5 mins and off the flame and let it cool a bit.
4. Serve it warm or chilled.
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