BASIL PINEAPPLE & COCONUT TARTLETS.. Pretty, eh??

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After chocolate my next favorite flavor is pineapple 🍍☺. I had this idea of making a pineapple tart from long. Just couldn’t decide on how to make it different. So I decided on making tartlets having basil pineapple filling topped with coconut cream. My only problem was that I don’t have tartlet moulds 😁. I used cookie cutters which made the tartlets look prettier :D. And the flavors worked really well. Yum!

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Ingredients

For the Shell
8 tbsp unsalted butter
3 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more as needed

For the filling
2 cups diced pineapple
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp butter
Juice of 1/2 lime
Handful of basil
A pinch of salt

For topping
Whipped coconut cream ( I didn’t get coconut cream so I mixed normal whipped cream with coconut powder 😜)
Diced or sliced pineapple
Toasted coconut flakes

Method

1. Combine all the ingredients for the tart shell and knead till a soft dough is formed. Don’t overwork the dough. Wrap in a plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

2. Heat butter in pan. Add diced pineapples. Cook on high flame for a minute then add sugar, salt, basil and 2 tbsp water. Cook on low flame till the pineapples are soft.

3. Roll the dough and place in tartlet moulds. ( You can also use cookie cutters like I did by placing 2 layers of the sides on the base with egg wash or milk. I got the sides by using 2 cutters of same shape, bigger and the medium one.)

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4. Prick with a fork and refrigerate again for 20 mins.

5. Bake for 20-25 mins in a preheated oven at 350Β°F.

6. Bring the shells to room temperature. Put the filling in the base and top with whipped coconut cream, toasted coconut flakes and pineapple dices.

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Serve with tea or as a dessert after dinner. ☺

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I stored the shells in a jar and used them with different fillings as well. When my mother is not around, I quickly take 1 tartlet, fill it with Nutella, top with some whipped cream and eat it all at once… 😁🙊😝

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Chicken Wellington… Phew!😅

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Have you seen Masterchef US junior? My God! Those kids are from some other world! 😱 The way they cook… and the presentation.. I’m amazed…awed.. 😍

So in one awesome episode (like all of them 😁) these kids got the challenge to make Chef Gordon Ramsay’s Beef Wellington. It looked so appetizing that I decided to make it for dinner.

I must tell you that this meal made me sweat πŸ˜…… But it was worth it… Seeing my sister smile and mom happy :).. I was glad.. πŸ˜€

For 2 portions

For the stuffing
1 chicken breast, split in 2
Zest of 1/2 lime
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp rosemary
Black pepper and salt to taste
2 tbsp English mustard paste
4 tbsp veg Mayonnaise
7-8 button mushrooms, sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
3-4 cloves of garlic, sliced

2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp oil
1 egg
2 cups chicken stock
1 tbsp vinegar

For Mashed Potatoes
2 medium potatoes, boiled
2 tbsp butter
1/2 cup fresh cream
1/4 cup milk
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 red chilli (optional)

2 Puff pastry sheets

How to roll it
1. Marinate the chicken with lime Zest, lime juice, rosemary, salt and pepper for 30 mins.

2. Heat oil and butter in a pan and seal the chicken.

3. Brush with mustard paste while it is still hot and keep in freezer for 15 mins.

4. Now caramelize onion, garlic and mushrooms in the same pan. Take out 3/4th of this mixture and keep aside.

5. Add chicken stock in rest of mushroom and onion and reduce.

6. Roll 2 pastry sheets just enough to cover the chicken breast properly, keeping the thickness around 1 cm.

7. Spread loads of veg mayonnaise on both the pieces of chicken (this will keep it moist and I used veg mayo because I think the egg one will curdle 😁). Cover evenly with the caramelized mushroom mixture. Place it on the pastry sheet, roll and seal the sides well with egg wash. Repeat this with the other piece.

8. Make few cuts on top for the steam to escape. Place in on the baking tray and egg wash evenly. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 200Β°C for 20-25 mins.

9. Grate the potatoes and mash so that there are no lumps. Heat butter, cream and milk in a clean pan. Add mashed potatoes. Whisk to avoid lumps. Cook for 2-3 mins. Season.

10. Serve the Chicken Wellington steaming hot with mashed potatoes and onion & mushroom sauce. πŸ™‚

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Break the Fast, Have Designed Savoury French Toast Muffins :-P

I know I know that I am very bad at giving titles… πŸ˜› so please ignore that and try these pretty and cheesy savoury French toast muffins. I don’t know how I got the idea..but the moment it came into my head, I was dying to try this. My mother always served us savoury French toast.. We didn’t even know that there is a sweet version of this.. 😁 So I was very certain about the outcome. It tasted good, looked different and no hard work required.. ☺

A simple and small recipe…

Ingredients
3 eggs
3/4 cup milk or cream
1/2 cup melted butter
4 cups 1 day oldΒ  cubed bread (I used brown bread loaf)
2 tbsp plain flour
Few sausages of your choice
1/2 cup grated cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste
Mixed herbs, optional

Method
1. Beat the eggs, butter, milk, herbs, cheese and seasoning together. Fold in the four & bread and keep aside.

2. Preheat the oven at 180 Β°C.

3. Slice the sausages into thin roundels and line the muffin moulds with it.

4. Scoop the mixture and bake for 15-20 minutes or until the muffins are slightly browned.

5. De-mould and see the magic.. πŸ˜€ πŸ˜‰

Serve these for breakfast upside down with compound butter, mayonnaise or with whatever you want and whenever you want… 😜 tasty anyway.. 😁

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I apologize for not having pictures.. I lost them.. 😣 I am sure that yours will look better… I beg you to share those with me.. πŸ™‚

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Munch into Crunchy Herbed Biscotti…

Greetings folks!

After a busy month and a great vacation, here I’m, back to blogging… πŸ˜€

First a bit about the tour… Oh my! It’s the best place I have ever seen πŸ˜† – Andaman and Nicobar Islands. So colorful, soothing, relaxing, clean and there is a lot more to this place. Scuba diving was thrilling.. Beautiful corals, clear water, cute little fishes.. I should really start a travel blog to brag about this place more.. 😜

Radhanagar beach, Havelock Island (rated as best beach in Asia by Times Magazine)
Radhanagar beach, Havelock Island (rated as best beach in Asia by Times Magazine)
Neil island
Neil island
Cloudscape (Looks like Scrat from Iceage to me 😜)
Cloudscape (Looks like Scrat from Iceage to me 😜)

Now about biscotti, It is originated from Italy. Very similar to a rusk but more flavorful and heavy. A freshly baked loaf is sliced and baked again to make it crunchy and dry.

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Usually biscotti are made sweet, but I wanted to try the savory one.

Ingredients
1 cup plain flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup gram flour (you can use plain flour instead)
3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 tbsp red chilli flakes
1 tbsp dried mixed herbs
1 tsp turmeric for color (optional)
1/2 cup + 1 tbsp butter
3/4 cup curd
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
Salt to taste

Method
1. Combine all the ingredients and knead into a dough. Sprinkle water if it is too dry.

2. Preheat the oven at 350Β°F. Roll the dough and place in a greased baking tray. Press down to 1 inch thickness. Sprinkle with flax seeds and chilli powder.

3. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Take out and let it cool for 10 minutes.

4. Slice crosswise carefully keeping the thickness around 1/2 inch.

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5. Brush each side with melted butter (optional). Bake for 5 minutes, flip and bake again for 5 minutes or till the biscotti are well toasted.

And done! πŸ™‚

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Serve these with soups, drinks, as a base for canapΓ© or toss in with any salad. Versatile and easy, isn’t it? πŸ˜‰

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Croquembouche, My first try

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Well I am a huge Masterchef fan, especially Masterchef Australia. πŸ™Œ

Croquembouche plays a key role in all the MC seasons. It is a French dessert made with choux pastry, filled and piled into a cone with the help of caramel.

So this was my very first choux pastry and of course “the croquembouche” πŸ™‚ (a mini one though). I don’t know if it was perfect or not but I am so proud of myself 😁. I couldn’t believe it came out this good in my first try. The crunchy crust.. chocolate ganache filling and caramel.. YUMMY !!:D ||Period ||

Just Another Pretty Cake… But Super Easy!

Cakes are something I bake at least ones a week, may be more and never get bored of it. I have so many cake tins and silicone moulds that my mother tells me to open a store 😁.  Fabfurnish.com is my first preferred site for buying these.

From many recipes I have for a cake, I will tell you the easiest one. My sister is fond of the cakes I bake but sadly she stays 1100 miles away from us. 😦 So whenever she comes here or we go to Kolkata, she and her friends get a treat of cakes. ;). The main problem I faced was that the cakes should stay moist, tasty and shouldn’t rot for 5-6 days without a refrigerator.( Since the climate here is hot and humid, it doesn’t last long.) That is why I went for this recipe. It is not very rich yet tasty.

Basic Recipe

3/4 cup water

3/4 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup oil

1 tbsp vinegar or lemon juice

1 tbsp vanilla extract

2 cups plain flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

A pinch of salt

Method

1. Dissolve sugar and salt in water properly. Add vinegar and vanilla extract.

2. Fold in sieved flour, baking powder and soda and flavoring. Batter should be of ribbon consistency.

3. Pour into a greased pan less than 2/3rd. The cake will rise a lot because of soda and vinegar. Bake in a preheated oven at 180Β°c

Very easy, isn’t it?

You can use this simple recipe and make many different flavored cakes. Below are few of I made. πŸ™‚PicsArt_1423722275174

Chocolate and vanilla marble cake. A trick to make your chocolate cake more rich is to boil cocoa powder in a bit of water, cool and use.

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Orange cupcake with Nutella 😍. Instead of vinegar I added orange juice and zest.

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Tutti frutti muffins

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Some colorful cakes..

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Tastes heavenly when served with ice-cream or whipped cream πŸ˜€

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