Sunday, November 27, 2011

Masala Boti Kebab......Sindhi Ke Tikke...

Boti Kebab...Nice little awesomely flavoured chunks of meat!

Now DOUBLE the flavour,hike up the aroma and let it all buzz,with a glass of chilled beer...anything for that matter.....even a simple Pepsi will do!

All that fizz really adds the buzz to the hot tikkas...and what about the Sindhi Ke Tikke....Well there is this little hole in the wall in a small DDA market in Shalimar Bagh,Delhi.This man sits near the butchers shop ,opens his counters at the first hint of darkness and on most days is sold out in an hour.
He has only about 5 kg of marinated Boti kebabs,a cauldron full of piping hot mutton gravy and a huge Tawa.
He does his magic,and the people come like rats following the wafting aromas ,also dragged by the TAK TAK on his tawa(the metallic clanging of the spatula on the huge tawa...)and the pied piper that he is,he sells all his wares(was this something to do with the Baker boy rhyme???I forget! Son is almost 12 years old and the sing song rhymes are all in the past behind us) and pockets all the moolah and heads home laughing his pants off!
How do I know all this??
We too were led  to the tikkas and have made a meal of them many a night.Oh and BTW,have seen Sindhi make them millions of times.

Memories,all alone in the moonlight...

ya...hardly Barbara Streisand stuff ,but  the song is really powerful.

All of the desi, punjabi ,bhangra loving folks...this one tastes super with the tikkas...

I so love the translations....Anyway to get back to 
The Masala Boti Kebab......Sindhi Ke Tikke...
you need

I recipe
1 onion chopped finely
2 tsp  tomato puree
1 tsp finely chopped ginger and garlic
some coriander and green chili chopped finely
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2  cup prepared gravy from any mutton/chicken/fish/vegetable curry dish(I used gravy from a Mutton Rogan Josh)
salt and red chili flakes to taste
juice of half a lemon
1 tsp desi ghee(clarified butter ) or butter

this is what the boti-kebab look like....
now for the fun stuff.
On a flat non stick pan or Tawa heat the ghee or butter.

To this add the chopped onion and ginger and garlic.Remember,its all on high heat.

Salt and coriander powder,helps to cook the onions faster.

Now the tomato puree....

And the prepared tikkas...along with the red chili flakes.

That's the Mutton Rogan Josh.

Added to the pan,while all this amalgamates,add some HOT water,and mix really well.

Cover and let simmer till the fat all separates.

Garnish with the coriander and green chillies.I need to let them warm through,after all,I suffer from the " hubby dear and his cranky dislike of fresh dhania or coriander " syndrome.

Served with a lot of sliced and spiced and 'lemoned" onions....

Close up....Lateral View.

This does not need any Chutney or sauce,and its generally a mistake to serve them as snack....There is never any leftover for the host"ess".
Make 'em when you are not expecting'll get a taste of Shalimar Bagh....and they say that Chandni Chowk has the best stuff...

Lets get with the Fruit cake next time,and the Rugelach cookies, and the Red Velvet Cup Cakes...
All this and MORE coming up after three days.

So what are you baking today???

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Chocolate Fudge Cake

My hair never takes it easy,after the mandatory 100 strokes of a hairbrush,it still will not settle.
BTW,I was trying to give my son a dirty look ,he was just not complying with my re4quest for a nice picture.
He was more interested in leaving...lets go,lets go,lets go...

I know that a chocolate fudge cake does not require any costumes,no make up,no nothing to dress it up!It has the perfect soul,pure as Chocolate.
But this one time,I was in no mood to make a chocolate genoise.
So I picked this...
From the Australian Family Series,Family Circle Favourite Cake Recipes.This book was printed somewhere in the 1980's,so there is a lot of margarine...which I DO not use.Use either oil or butter.

The cake had to be drenched in brandy.
As if we need As excuse.
Chocolate is fun,but alcohol is funner!
Before you can drench the cake in alcohol,you need to bake the cake...
so lets go!

for the
Chocolate Fudge Cake...

you need
125 gms butter /oil
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence
2/3 cups cocoa powder
1/2 cup hot water
2 tspn vinegar
1 3/4 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking soda(bicarbonate of soda)
1 tsp baking powder
pinch salt

The cake,all shiny and cracked...better to soak the brandy with??

Before you start,Oven at 180C/350F.
Standard cup measure,the flour,the baking soda,baking powder and the salt.Sifted well,twice.

The cocoa powder,to which you must add the hot water and mix.

To this I added the vegetable oil,I used Sundrop,sunflower oil.

The eggs and the sugar...

The cup of milk to which the vinegar must be added.You don't need to stir,it all happens on its own.

The eggs and sugar,well whisked with the vanilla...

To which the oil and cocoa mix must be added and whisked well to incorporate.

Now a third of the flour and the milk which must be alternated.

Blended once with the blender and then all folded in...

Into a greased and floured round tin.

In all its glory,you need to let it cool for 10 minutes then only over turn.

Now dress it up,click on this link for further instructions.
If you don't have to offer the cake to children,without the cream dip it in brandy.

Enjoy with a cup of coffee.
You wont have a hangover the next day.

So what are you baking today???

Coming up
My version of Mutton Tikkas,using the Boti Kebab....

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Palmiers/Elephant Ears/French Hearts/Whatever Cookies

A rose by any name is still a rose. A cookie by any of the above names is still a cookie[l1] .  Possibly the easies and simplest cookie there is ever made.
I got a little rap on my knuckles from little sister yesterday, for not being true to my blogs name. True! True! True!


But my only excuse...who will eat what I bake? Too tempting, too sweet and too tasty. That is the same as too many calories....
So I was making low cal stuff! The next thing I know, my friends will be running away, screaming like banshees, the minute they see me with a platter in my hands. I so want to keep my friends, so instead of the platters, i’ll use Tupperware.
Did you know that ms-office considers Tupperware to be a proper noun? Instant caps!

Palmiers and Elephant Ears is what these cookies are called in the US and here in Incredible India ,more so Saddi Dilli these re known as French Hearts.
Imagine his ears...

To make these
 Palmiers/Elephant Ears/French Hearts/Whatever Cookies

You need

1 sheet puff pastry (generally equal to 490 Gms)
1 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon powder
½ tspn butter

Yup, that’s all!

I pulled some strings here. I was in no mood to roll out and fold pastry to get 729 layers, so I sweet talked my neighbourhood baker to give me some. They make veg and non veg patties out of it everyday, so he was happy to oblige.

For those of you, who can find puff pastry in your supermarket aisle, yay! For the others, we will make puff pastry soon!
Ok, i got 400 Gms of pastry made with 250 Gms flour and 100 Gms butter. The rest is of course water, which btw is 0 calories.
As if you already did not know!                                                        
The first step, switch on your oven to 200C/390F.
Divide the dough into two parts.

Dust your worktop with flour and roll out half the puff pastry dough to 3/8th inch thickness.
Coat the surface with 1/4th of the melted butter, paint will be a better word! You just need the sugar mix to adhere to the pastry.

In a bowl, mix the cinnamon and the sugar well.

Decide which way to roll. I did hearts and elephant ears. The elephant ears were more like pinwheels, so rolled in one direction.
 One log, slice into 3/8th inch thickness.

 With a super sharp knife.

Place these on al foil. Trust me, you don’t want to omit this, you’ll end up scrubbing your baking tray till kingdom come.

Into the hot oven....7-8 minutes max.
Check, because sugar burns superfast. Once the pastry is light brown bring them out and make sure you taste them only when they have cooled down. Hot sugar can burn your tongue.

Next the hearts. Folded from both directions.....
When they meet in the centre...reminds you of an old fashioned camera reel. Pinched bottom.

Same drill....Al foil, oven, cool, hot etc...

My, my, you are a super cool learner.

Now go attack these cookies with a vengeance...the rolling bit was fun. And if you don’t get neat cuts, just pop the dough into the fridge for a while and then start again.ImagineDumbo's face in the middle....

Otherwise ...beating hearts...

And good enough for a small baby to bite into....
So what are you baking today???

Coming up...
Chocolate Fudge Cake

The one used to make the

Monday, November 21, 2011

Brandy Drenched Black Forest Cake

Black forest is a region in Germany ,and they (obviously) love their cake.No wonder it has spawned so many versions. Chocolate cake, with cherries and Kirshwasser (German Cherry Brandy for us .... if it is not high end Cognac...we have our local Honey dew brand) lots of cream, a few chocolate!
The stuff we get from our friendly neighbourhood baker is a cardboard -like chocolate sponge....very often that can also be used to wash the like paper and glue it tastes. Topped with lots of non dairy cream and a few un pitted cherries. Also grated chocolate is made to rain down on the poor texture, no flavour...nothing, NADA!

So, there had to be a difference.
Stress has been poking its thorns into our sides for the last few days, so a bit of aromatherapy via vanilla was badly needed. Dinner with friends tonight, so we skip the customary bottle of wine (yeah, pour it into this cake)...and feel better.
The chocolate cake is a fudge chocolate cake, made with oil instead of butter, I wish I could say vegan, but no, it needs its calcium. Check it out on
According to the Food Network, the “REAL” Black Forest Cake must have three layers .Me; sadly, I am not able to manage two exactly straight cuts yet, so I stick to two layers. However if you are really adept with your knife, keep three layers.
And if you did notice the sides of the cake....that was the leftover cream...did not want to leave the cream...

Basic requirements for the 

Brandy Drenched Black Forest Cake...

you need

1 chocolate cake(I will be posting the recipe of this Chocolate Fudge cake)
100 gms Cooking Chocolate
50 gms fresh cream/Malai
100 mils Brandy
1 tin canned cherries(450 gms)
250 gms whipped cream
50 mils milk
1 tbsp cornstarch

That’s the cake; love the colour....really difficult to achieve the colour and this chocolaty texture in a regular cake. Slice the dome off and overturn the cake. FLAT!The cake is on

I wish I could say the same for my abs!

Now using a large knife, slice through the centre. Next time I’ll mark with a ruler and toothpick to get accurate  cuts.
The tin of cherries, which I realised were not pitted....that involved a labour of love. De seeding most I kept a few for the topping.

The liquid and the  de seeded cherries I placed into a saucepan and set to simmer. When the cherry liquid was simmering I added 1 peg measure of brandy. 

In another bowl mixed the cornstarch with the half peg of brandy and poured it into the liquid.

The mix ought to be stirred quickly, as the cornstarch cooks in a jiffy. Now take this off the heat, and let it cool on its own. This heat softened the cherries and made them drunk.

For the Ganache...
Place the cream in a saucepan and bring to the boil. 

Just as it begins to bubble all around, add in the chopped cooking chocolate,

keep stirring till it all melts and blends together. Take this off the heat midway. You don’t want crystallised chocolate or burnt chocolate.

I could have added a bit of brandy here, but I forgot. So you can.

The bottom slice of cake on the platter

Offer it a small drink, wont you. Then maybe a bit of milk to sooth the tummy...

Slather the melted chocolate on this slice and spread it out well. Leave to cool, and set.

That’s the whipped cream. a circle   the edges to keep the cherries in. 

If you do three layers. Just slather little cream to help keep the slices in place and place the second slice of cake on it.

This was just not fitting on the it went to the cook.(me...hic!hic! if so little brandy can affect me!)

Ensure you offer all layers a good drink huh?? My two layers, inside the ring of cream I spread the cherries mix, and let it set further in the fridge.

The top.....drunk??

After half an hour, out of the fridge, a bit of cream on the cherries and the top layer on them. The top layer was drenched in a peg and a half of brandy.

Now for the fun bit.

A small amount of cream to lock the crumbs. This is called a crumb coat. Cool at least 5 minutes. Now, the cream slathered liberally.So the second layer of cream has almost NO crumbs.

I keep promising myself that I will buy a palette knife for frosting, my only excuse, Ranchi. Waiting to go to Delhi, even for a whirlwind of a shopping trip. Delhi brings a smile to my face. Many years ago we were living in a place near New Alipore Dwar, (about 100 kms from here actually, but references on the www and atlases are few and far between) and returning to Delhi for vacations, I used to start smiling even before we reached Delhi...the though t of going home.
To the place where I belong!

Now pipe the rosettes, just to stud them with the cherries I’d not pitted.

Nice.I sprinkled a wee bit of the chocolate left over.No time to make Chocolate curls......Homemade Chocolates also on the agenda.

The dinner turned out to be a non celebration dinner for hubby dear’s friend’s 39th birthday.

Nobody wants to be 40!
I wanted to take a picture of a slice...but for reasons unknown to me ,I ended up photographing the cake and not the slice.

BTW,alcohol in food ensures that left overs are even more AWESOME!

Happy birthday Shankar Prashar, many more to come.

So what are you baking today???

After a rap on the virtual knuckles by little sister....
Coming Soon...
Palmier/Elephant Ears /French Hearts /Whatever Cookies...

Until the next

Until the next


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