Sunday, July 26, 2015

Wholewheat Coffee and Chocolate Chip Cake

One thing my Malaysian Holiday has taught me is that sweet can be sweet with lesser amounts of sugar.
The South East Asians don't have too much of an affinity towards milk and milk products and sugar.
Their desserts are not cloyingly sweet or milky -only just.
And they are sweet.
And fulfilling.
Date cakes and Coffee cakes were a standard on all the dessert spread s that we ate at. And they were not frosted. In fact whatever was frosted was done for the benefit of the tourists.
So I just had to come home and try out a less sweet cake.
 This is what I ate in KL assuming them  to be soft cookies. And when the chef at the counter told me they had ZERO fat...I fell in love -with the chubby chef and with Kuih Bahulu.
And back in Mumbai,  java in my cake was the best way to start.

So while my Brookies were baking , I got out my loaf tin and did the batter for a whole wheat coffee cake.

If the pastry chefs in Malaysia manage with less sugar or zero oil ,so can I. Well ,one at a time.

Barring the fact that my chocolate chunks got a little dehydrated, my cake was perfect.
If I may say so myself.
Since I have few friends to feed here-the compliments have to be in first person.

For the

Whole Wheat Coffee Cake-Low Fat 

you need

11/2 cup whole wheat flour or atta
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
100 mils neutral vegetable oil
50 mils hot milk
3 tbsp Instant Coffee
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
pinch salt
1/2 cup Chocolate Chips or chocolate chunks

Dissolve the coffee in the hot milk and set aside. Once it cools add the vanilla extract or essence.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Preheat the oven to 175°C or 350°F and grease and flour the tin with oil and whole wheat flour.
Be sure to shake off the excess.
In a large bowl beat the oil and sugar till they sort of look mixed and add one egg at a time.
Now alternate between the dry and the milk and coffee and mix it all in.

In the end fold in  the chocolate chips or chunks.
Tap once on the shelf to even out the batter and pop into the oven for 40 to 45 minutes.
Beautiful mocha aromas will be wafting from the oven... and you'll want to frink just that.
After 45 odd minutes , check the cake for doneness and bring it out.
Cool and then run a knife around the cake and turn out onto a wire rack.

Slice and enjoy with a cup of coffee or cold coffee or green tea or just like that.

A lot of solace to your mind comes from the fact that it is low fat , healthy and has low sugar.

Or maybe not.
Sometimes, you just have to indulge.
And enjoy.

So what are you baking today???

Friday, July 17, 2015

Of Kuala Lumpur and Some Food

That Malaysian Holiday,it was all about the food , but I would be doing KL  a great disservice by not blogging about the mighty Petronas.

These are the most iconic of all buildings in the world-The Petronas Towers.
I learnt two things here.
    1. That vertigo is not to be laughed about.
    2. That Dan Brown has forced me to look for symbols in whatever monument I see and question them. However bizzare they may be. Here it was the Rub el Hizb Islamic symbol. The two overlapping squares in unicode (8 pointed star)ending the Arabic Chapter in Calligraphy. I read about it first after I noticed it in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.

This picture was taken after the Suriya KlCC experience.
Majestic , these twin towers 86 levels high . And with a concrete ,steel and glass facade. Oh and the Sky Bridge is where I realised that vertigo comes to one and all.
41 and 42 levels above and all you can see is the clean and planned  BBKLCC /Golden triangle or the Bukit Bintang Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre area of KL city. The observation deck is at the 86th level.
Suria KLCC houses a shopping complex of upmarket brands and offices. Small tableaus recreating village life and Kites had been set up in honor of the holy month of Ramadan . Salam Aidilfitri is the greeting of the hour, a way to greet the people in the holy month of Ramadaan.

Before the ascent to the two stages-one to the sky walk bridge -the 41st floor at 170m and then the deck at level 86, you will be guided by a virtual presentation. This little boy had the time if his life walking through the video.
The Petronas Sky Bridge is almost like a walk in the sky. I needed the force to be with me... Luke ...Luke...
Solar panels and the logo of the Suria KLCC visible from the 41st level skybridge.
The ride up to the 86th level was in two stages...level 83 and then up three levels to the observation deck. This was the coolest thing. The interactive TVs could read the bar code on our tickets and produce visuals.

I tried looking out and taking pics from the observation deck but I was beginning to feel giddy.
A few more pics...

So I sat and looked around.
There's more about the BBKLCC and stuff but it was time for dinner already. At the Big Apple Restaurant in the Berjaya Times Square ,Kuala Lumpur ,dinner was served.

Iftaar is the meal at the end of the Ramadaan fast and is had at 7:28pm after the prayer  plays on the Radio.

Rose drink and pitted dates
 So every one fills up their plates and waits patiently for the fast to end. The Ramadan fast ends with a date and a sip of the Rose drink.
While wandering, I checked out the dessert platter first.
Such a huge array of fruit and sweets. I had tried the Malaysian Papaya and melons the same morning and of course the star fruit and Dragon fruit are common enough in India. But ,I had only ever tried the Rambutan in a can.

I wasn't quite sure how to open it... camera in my hand you see...
So flash a smile and you get tons of information.

                    A fresh Rambutan is firm ,sweet and tastes similar to a lychee. Its a lot easier to peel and the seed is smaller. The mango steen was thankfully peeled and the startfruit sliced. I loved the star fruit here. Tart and sweet and juicy.
Spread of Ciku-Cheeku,Rambutan starfruit,Rose Apple(from crocodile and monkey story) etc
The ones we get in India are way too tart to eat without the requisite masala salt. This was delicate and  not as tart but sweet-nice.

Bite sized desserts made of Pandan leaf and also the Malaysian Kuih.
The cookies were different too,ubiquitous chocolate fountain and snowy marsh mallows...
I tried coating my dragon fruit slice in chocolate too...Strawberries taste way better.

That was the pi├Ęce de resistance. 
A huge barbecued lamb with roast vegetables.
And gravy. All nicely carved out for you.
When you have the lamb, the veggies are just add-ons.

  There was a slew of accompaniments, pickles, relishes and preserves. Fish-Anchovies seemed to be the favourite. Beef and chicken and veggies were served too                               Salted duck eggs quartered were being enjoyed too.

That was the chef doing tempura. He did oyster(or was it scallop?) and squid tempura for us.
Lemme say I am not really partial to  Japanese cuisine.  I love my flavours strong and my music loud.
So wasabi is good. But a tempura does not inspire my taste buds so.

The chicken and the roast mutton and barbeque's we eat here In India too. I was more interested in the fresh sea food . And I had a taste of it all.

Coming up, more food adventures in Malaysia...

Until the next

Until the next


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