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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Event - BERRIES - Strawberry - Desserts - August 1st to 31st

Berries are the crown jewels of summer, the gems that inspire pies,
parfaits, cobblers, ice cream treats, and whipped cream wonders. 
Best of all, berries deliver super-healthy antioxidants that help 
fight disease.
The word "Berry" means a freshly fruit produced from a single 
ovary. In everyday English, "berry" is a term for any small 
edible fruit. These "berries" are usually juicy, round or semi-
oblong, brightly colored, sweet or sour, and do not have a stone or 
pit, although many seeds may be present.

Berries provide all the disease-fighting antioxidants you need in a 
single day.

I love all berries as they are simply sweet and sour, have vibrant 
color and very high in antioxidants.

You can make any recipe from which can be a Dessert/Sweet
...the main in
ingredient should be the strawberry in your recipe. 
Strawberries you use can be fresh, frozen, dried etc., you can make 
vegetarian or non-vegetarian recipes.
Add a line or two as to why you like this berry, 
Nutritional Information about the berry, Homemade 
Beauty Tips like Face Packs, Scrubs etc., and Weight Loss Tips 
with the berry you used in your recipe.

I want to keep this event going on, so would like to use these berry theme with different menu categories like appetizer, snack, entree, juice/milkshakes, ice cream/sorbets, dessert/sweets etc., and you need to choose one berry like Strawberry, Blueberry, Raspberry, Blackberry, Gooseberry etc.,....

So this month  (August 1st to 31st ) I am choosing "Berries - Strawberry - Desserts"

I am also posting this same event in my other blog "Anu's Healthy Kitchen"

Now to the Event Rules:
1. Send in as many as recipes as you want, archived entries are 
allowed only if re-posted and linked to this event. New recipe should also be linked to this event page.

2. You should use strawberry as your dessert menu.
2. Use of logo is mandatory, so that the berry word will spread 
around bloggers and non-bloggers.
3. Bloggers and Non-bloggers can participate.
4. Event date starts from August 1 to August 31st.
5. Please enter you recipe details by clicking on the Event Logo at the end of this post/page.

Please Click on the EVENT LOGO to ENTER the RECIPE DETAILS....
Please Click on the EVENT LOGO to ENTER the RECIPE DETAILS....

If you face any problems leave me a comment or drop a line to anu(dot)healthykitchen(at)gmail(dot)com.

So hurry up friends we have only 30 days to fill my inbox with lots of yummy berricious recipes.......... :-)

If anyone interested in guest hosting this event for the coming months....please look at the Event Calender for more details and if willing to guest host for the same, email me at  anu(dot)healthykitchen(at)gmail(dot)com. I am also updating a Event Calender Page with rest of the details about this Ongoing Event.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Strawberry Biscotti (Double Baked Cake)

I been watching myself that whenever I try to come up with a new recipe with leftovers, I create a new recipe which tastes great and better than eating the same old boring leftover.
I baked this Strawberry Cake (homemade) for my friend and myself, I ended up making a big cake ....we ate a lot continuously two days and finally got I wanted to make it more interesting to eat the leftovers and not to waste it. I didn't want to make anything much heavier but lite and should be interesting. We all love tea time snacks, so this thought striked my mind about biscotti, which I love a lot to eat with tea. So just gave it a try. It was awesome, evening I made tea and this....the biscotti finished the same day...we all liked it a lot. IT was crisp and tasted very good. This the best way to eat a leftover cake with no additional ingredients to add. :))

Strawberry Cake (click on the link to view my Strawberry cake recipe)

1. Preheat oven to 350F and slice the cake into 1 1/2 inch thick slices or any desired shape and bake it for about 20 mins or until the top is golden brown.

2. Best and easy T time snack. 

Strawberry Cake (Homemade)


I my friend went to this year's strawberry picking and had totally 10 lbs of fresh strawberries...she asked me to bake a cake as her son too loves strawberries and cakes. Even Anush loves strawberries a lot, so thought of making the strawberry popsicle and strawberry cake. I baked two cakes, one for Anush and one for my friend's son. It was awesome and definitely better one than the store bought or made from the box mix or even the store bought strawberries. The freshly picked strawberries tasted much better, more juicy and had vibrant color. I always make cakes with no oil in it and use applesauce (unsweetened) instead. This time I was running out of applesauce at home....So who ever is conscious like me please use unsweetened applesauce instead of oil....just an healthy alternative!!
Loved it!!

3 cups Self Raising flour
2 cups Granulated Sugar
3/4 cup Vegetable Oil / Unsweetened Apple sauce
1 1/2 cup pureed Strawberries
1 tsp pure Vanilla Extract
1 tsp Orange/Orange Zest (I used Orange)
4 Eggs, beaten

1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Spray with cooking oil/butter spray on cake pan/or any baking dish, and sprinkle flour all over and shake off the excess by tapping.

3. Meanwhile, beat the eggs with hand mixer/stand mixer until it's light and fluffy and the color of the eggs should have turned pale color. for about 4-5 mins. Now add the rest of the ingredients first the wet ingredients and then the flour combine again with a hand mixer/stand mixer until you get a smooth non-lumpy batter for about 3-4 mins.

4. Pour this batter into the baking pan and bake it for about 26 to 28 mins or until the top is slightly golden and if a toothpick or skewer inserted comes out clean.

5. Transfer the cake on a wire rack and let it cool.

Note: You can use Strawberry Cream Cheese as the icing. Very simple and easy.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Honey Almond Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting - No Flour and No Sugar

I love almonds especially when they are toasted and sprinkled on cakes or salads. The first time we went to IKEA store, I tasted this cake and fell in love with this cake and browsed so many recipes but was not at all satisfied. Then some how found out a recipe which inspired this "Ikea Almond Honey Cake" as I would call it and tried was awesome and satisfied my cravings.
So, here is the recipe.....

1 1/2 (whole with skin) + 1/4 (slivered) cups Almonds (whole with skin)
4 Eggs (substitute 1 egg = 1tbsp Flax meal + 3tbsp Water)
1/2 cup + 2tbsp Honey
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1 pkg 8oz Cream Cheese


1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Place the 1 1/2 cups and 1/4 cup of almonds (2hole and slivered) on a baking sheet and toast it for about 7-9 min. Watch the slivered almonds from burning.
3. Remove from oven and allow to come to cool.
3. Separate the eggs, keep the yolks in a bowl and the rest in another bowl.
4. In a food processor or mixer process the almonds until finely ground to a powder.
5. Now in a mixing bowl add egg yolks, vanilla extract, baking soda, honey, salt and mix until well blended in medium speed.
6. Now add the almond powder/flour and mix in low speed until well blended.
7. Now in a separate bowl beat the egg whites until it is white and you achieve stiff peaks with a hand mixer or if you arms are strong enough you can also do with whisk. :).
8. Now fold in the almond batter slowly into the egg whites in batches, make sure you don't over mix but keep the air incorporated in egg whites. 
9. Meanwhile spray a baking pan (9 inch) with cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment paper and spray the cooking spray on the paper too. You can use a spring foam pan too for easy cake removal.

NOTE: If you don't want to use the cream cheese frosting, you can sprinkle the slivered toasted almonds over the top of the cake and then bake else, reserve it to sprinkle over the icing.

10. Bake the cake until golden brown or a knife or fork inserted in the middle comes out clean for about 28-30 mins. Allow it to cool completely.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
1. In a mixing bowl add the room temperature cream cheese 2 tbsp honey and mix it until creamy and smooth with no lumps.
2. Spread it evenly over the top of the cake and sprinkle the 1/4 cup slivered almonds or decorate it according to you taste.

NOTE: I cut the cake into two layers and put cream cheese frosting and almonds on the middle as well as the top layer.

Re-posting this recipe to participate in the event "Only Baked" hosted by Tamalapaku and Foodelicious.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Anush 3rd Birthday Cake - Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

Anush loves to eat chocolate, cookies and cakes. I already planned for a big Thomas and Friends Cake for his party, but wanted to bake a small one for him to cut with us as a family celebration. So I thought of making a small cake, but different. I got this idea of cookie as a cake when I was browsing to find a local bakery to fill the goody bags with cookies, they make cookie sheet cakes. So I thought why not give it a try. 
I did this recipe from scratch and it turned out awesomely good...but if you don't have time and patience, you can just buy a cookie mix either as a mix from the baking mix isle or the ready made dough from the frozen section and bake it according to the package instructions but not to form small cookies but just one big cookie in a round cake pan or any desired baking pans of your choice.
Good luck with your is my recipe...

2 cups Bittersweet (or Semisweet) Chocolate Chips1/2 cup Semisweet (or Bittersweet) Chocolate Chips1/4 cup (1/2 stick) Unsalted Butter2 Eggs1/2 cup Brown Sugar1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract3/4 cup All Purpose Flour1 tsp Baking Soda1/8 tsp Salt

Melting Chocolate:
1. Preheat oven to 250F
2. Combine 2 cups chocolate chips with butter in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for first 20, remove the bowl and mix, again microwave it for more 20 secs, remove and mix, repeat this step until the chocolate is almost melted.
3. Set chocolate aside to cool for 5-10 minutes until it's warm when you insert your finger.

Cookie Cake Batter:
 1. Combine eggs and brown sugar in large bowl, beat until well blended with a hand mixer.
2. Add Vanilla and room temperature chocolate add flour baking soda and salt and beat them to a batter.
3. Combine rest of the chocolate chips and fold it into the batter.
4. Let the batter rest for 10 mins.
5. Now place the whole batter into a lined round baking pan and bake it until a fork comes out clean for about 12-20 mins.
6. If you want the cookie cake to be warm and soft then keep it in a very low temperature oven. Make sure you don't decorate it with icing while it's warm or else the icing will melt.

7. I decorated the cake after it cooled down, with white butter cream icing with star tip.

Anush's 3rd Birthday Cake - Thomas and Friends (My First Spray Painting on Cake)

This year he liked Thomas and decided to make this cake for his 3rd b'dy. I was actually planning his b'dy party at home, so had little cooking, a lot of cleaning and decoration to do. So decided to be easy with the cake decoration. So I bought these Thomas and Friends rubber toys, which can be washed and re-used for playing and also tried on color spray instead of mixing colors and do the icing.
Well it worked out so easy. I was amazed to see the results. You just need some practice and it gives a beautiful finish.

Since I am not much working on the decoration, I wanted the cake to be special, but still add some healthy ingredients (as I always try to do :-)). So I made a big marble cake with chocolate and yellow cake mixes and added some dried and chopped dates to it, so that children who are eating this part of cake will have the dates hidden in the chocolate. :-)
The second big round cake, again I made a marble cake with yellow and rainbow cake mixes and added party fruit mix (like the tooty fruity) which has all candied lemon peel, pineapple, cherries, orange peel, ginger and tooty fruity. Since it will be colorful naturally kids would love it.
Then I cut the top layer of cake into half and assembled the cakes as a stage with the round at the bottom and two half with flat end in the front.
Then I did a thin layer of white butter cream icing all over the cake. 

I rolled yellow fondant and made wavy design and stuck at the bottom to form a  stage wall and stuck edible mickey cake toppers, because Anush started liking Mickey Mouse too, so didn't wanna disappoint him.
Then I sprayed green color spray and blue on the bottom, sides and top of the cake.
I made train tracks, bushes, tree with butter cream icing and arranged the rubber toys on the tracks.
Now I stuck the b'dy message with edible alphabet cake toppers.

Every one appreciated this time too!....They all liked the healthy cake which didn't have much cream, so they could eat more. 
This time also many came for a second round of cake piece and they also choose the part of the cake they wanted to eat more. First time I served two pieces of cake, one with chocolate marble and the second one with rainbow marble.

Anush was very happy and ate almost two big pieces and was very happy to cut the cake...he was laughing out loud and so excited. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Anush's 2nd Birthday Cake - Barney and Friends Fondant Cake (My First Fondant Cake)

OMG! Did I make this cake?? This thought comes to me always when I see this cake picture. I love to bake and this idea came to me, when I wanted to order a big cake for Anush's b'dy. I tried so many bakeries, but they were either costly or didn't do want I wanted. I actually wanted to make everything edible, but the bakeries said they would only keep toys or if they do also, it would be very expensive.
By then, I started to think about taking baking classes at Michael store, when I found about the course, I came to know that there were 4 individual courses and each course teaches you different techniques and to learn about fondant cake will be only in my 3rd course, the worst part was no one was teaching the 3rd course at that time.
So I decided to do it myself and learn it from google and youtube videos. It was quite challenging and didn't have time to practice too.
I got this fondant and first took pictures of Barney and Friends and decided on what colors I will be needing. Then mixed the colors and stored it and started to make the shapes slowly. It took me a week to finish off making the edible Barney and friends. It took me so long because, Anush was young and he would not let me do it during the day time, so I used to spend time after he sleeps in the night and did these like edible fondant Barney and Friends.
A day before the party of his b'dy, i.e., on my b'dy the 28th Sep I decided to bake the cake, and do the fondant decoration in the night again after he sleeps, instead of enjoying and celebrating my b'dy. Whatever, I was kinda happy and at the same time tensed. 
I baked two big rectangular cakes, the base being the chocolate cake and layered it with french vanilla cake and butter cream icing, then bakes a big round marble cake. Made a thing layer of butter cream icing all over, kept it to set for about 3-4 hrs. 
By that time, I did all the other work at home, took Anush to bed. Shoj and my friend and neighbor sat and helped with me all through the cake making. Shoj went to sleep while we were working with the fondant decoration and my friend stayed all through till 3.30 am. We were chatting, so I was not so tired.
First I struggled a lot rolling and placing the fondant on the cake, because it was breaking. Finally I managed to fix attaching little flowers on the sides.
Finally I placed the edible Barney and friends, ribbons and the number two, that was also edible.
When I saw the final cake I was so happy and delighted, but in some corner of my heart I was still tensed, because the cake has to be good until evening of the party the 29th Sep (Anush'd B'dy).
The party was awesome and to my surprise just before cutting the cake, when everyone gathered around for the cake cutting, Shoj called out loudly and he said that I made the cake, he and everyone appreciated with a big round of applause. This moment was the moment where sometimes you don't know how to react too and my joy cannot be explained in words. Anush was also very happy to cut the cake.
Everyone liked the cake and within minutes many came for second round to have the cake, at the end, most of our close friends, took some cake and I was left with no cake, which made me very very happy. 
This was the first inspiration that I got to start baking for others!
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