Diwali tuti fruiti laddoos

No Ghee Diwali Semolina/Sooji Laddoos – Tuti Fruiti For A Festive Look

Diwali Sweets

These Semolina laddos are so easy to make; you can rustle them up just before Diwali.  I deliberately avoided ghee in this recipe, because  all Diwali sweets contain ghee, the staple in making Indian sweets.

This whole process takes less than 15mins.  You can double up the amount and make a larger quantity and store in the fridge for a couple of days ahead of Diwali.

I added tuti fruiti to give it a cheerful festive look and to make them stand out from other usual sweets.  Also, kids will love the colourful look and the dainty sweetness of tuti fruiti along with the creamy taste of the laddoos.  In place of tuti fruiti, you can add butter roasted cashews, almonds or sultanas.

Wish you all a very happy Diwali!

You will need the following ingredients to make these:

Corse Semolina / Sooji 1 full cup
Castor Sugar(if you are taking granulate sugar grind until smooth) 1/2 cup
Milk 3 tbsp
Butter 2 tbsp
Salt 2 pinches
Tuti Fruiti
Cardamom powder 2 pinches
Vanilla 2 drops

Let’s Make :

  • In a heavy bottom pan melt butter
  • Add semolina and fry for 5 mins
  • Add sugar and stir a couple of mins
  • Mix cardamom powder, vanilla and Salt
  • Add milk gradually while mixing everything rapidly under a very low flame
  • When all comes together empty it into a bowl
  • Before it cools down add a handful of  tuti fruiti and quickly make balls
  • Decorate with more tuti fruiti sprinkled on top
  • Keep aside for 1/2 hr and they will be ready to devour
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mango lassi

Mango Lassi – Delicious Summer Delight

mango lassi

Who can resist the fleshy, sweet and subtly-sour mangoes that are in abundance in the summer months.  Mango lassi is a well-known quench buster in the Indian sub continent which acts it’s way to cool you down within and refreshes in a delightful way!

I personally prefer canned Kesar or Badami mango pulp which are made from fresh mangoes and has a distinct creamy and silky texture.  The advantage of using the pulped mango is that you can enjoy this dring  even when the mango season is not around.

You just have to load everything to the blender jar in one go, including the ice cubes and then process for about 1 min.   Churning with ice cubes enfolds a beautiful texture and overall coolness, so mark it as a must.

You will need :

 Mango pulp  1 cup
 Plain yogurt (Full Fat or Fat Free) add full fat yogurt for a silky texture  1 cup
 Sugar  3 tbsp
 Water  2 cups
 Ice cubes  5

Let’s make it :

  • Drop everything into your blender jar and churn in high speed for 1 min.
  • Serve immediately!
  • Yummy !!

 

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Fruit Custard – Fresh Fruits In Delicious Banana Custard Cream

fruit custard

When served chilled with a scoop of ice-cream or just on its own, no dessert can compete with this beautiful, relatively-healthy fruit custard.

Now that the summer is around the corner and different varieties of fruits and berries are in abundance, making this delicious fruity dessert is a real joy!  As a matter of fact, the oranges and clementines taste more delicious in the summer months so, adding a lot of them will give this dish a noticeable zing !

As for the custard, no other flavour will beat the  banana flavour as it goes deliciously well with this dessert. Also, to give an exotic look you can add vanilla ice cream topped with coloured sprinklers or scatter some jelly cubes.

I believe that this is the best way to sneak a lots of fruits into kids’ diet without much cajoling.  If you are serving for kids under 5 years, make sure to cut the fruits into small pieces to avoid any chocking hazards.

Let’s make it: 

Make the custard first

  • Follow the instructions in the back of the packet and make the custard and leave it to cool
  • Cover with a cling film and place in the fridge

Slice the fruits

  • 1/2 hr before serving, sllice fruits and collect them in a bowl

Go for bananas, oranges, apples, mangoes, kiwis, red / green grapes, cherries, blue berries, papaya, pinapple

Chill them

  • Add the fruits to the custard cream and give a good mix
  • Cover with a cling film and place back in the fridge until chilled

Serve it

  • Fill the cups with the fruity custard
  • Scoop vamilla ice cream and place on the top or toss some jelly cubes and sulthanas just before serving.  You can add a few cashew nuts for an exotic taste
  • Serve within an hour because the fruits can go stale and change colour
  • Enjoy the delicious melody of fruits laced with scented banana flavour custard

Tips :

  • Remember to mix the required amount of custard powder in a small amount of milk first and then gradually add to the boiling milk while stirring as per the instructions in the packet.
  • Keep stirring the boiling milk with custard until it thickens slightly.  Do not stop stirring or else it will burn from the bottom.  Also, you have to stir it even after taking out of the flame to avoid forming any lumps.
  • I add 2 tbsp of sugar to 2 tbsp of custard powder for a sweeter taste.
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Creme’ Caramel Pudding – Made with condensed milk and baked in the oven

This is my  easier version of Creme’ Caramel Pudding, made with condensed milk and baked in the oven.

This oven baked version is a real bliss on a busy day, when you’re cooking 4 dishes at the same time for a party or fixing an elaborate meal.  Just stick the pudding into the oven, set the timer and forget about it.  While you are attending to numerous other stuff, the oven will bake it to the perfection!

Let’s make it:

You will need these few ingredients :

 Condensed milk can  380g or 400 g (small size)
 White sugar  1 tbsp
 Water 2 cans from the empty condensed milk can
 Lemon zest/Vanilla  1 lemon peel grated into tiny pieces and  Vanilla 2 tsp
 Eggs 6 large

Set the oven to 180 C

Make The Caramel 

  • Sugar 5 tbsp
  • Water 1/2 cup

caramel

  • Place sugar and water in a pan and boil in high heat
  • Do not stir with a spoon because the caramel can stick on it.  Hold from both ends and shake the pan from time to time
  • The caramel will turn into a lovely golden colour after a several minutes
  • Immediately,  switch off the flame and take the pan out
  • Straightaway, pour the caramel on to the bottom of the pudding bowl or tray and spread it all over

(This will stick like glossy glass onto the bottom but do not worry.  While baking, it just adjusts into a lovely treacle.)

Rub Butter

  • Just after pouring caramel into the tray, take a little butter onto your hand and rub it around the tray so that the pudding will not stick to the tray/bowl once baked

All in to the Blender

Into your blender jar pour all the following;

  • Condenced milk tin – all of it
  • Wash the tin and two tins of water
  • 6 Eggs
  • 1 tbsp of sugar
  • 2 tbsp Vanilla and lemon zest

Blend in high speed exactly for 30 seconds.

Into the dish

  • Pour the creamy liquid into a tray or a pyrex dish leaving some space from the top for the pudding to rise
  • Place the pudding tray on another wider tray filled 1/4 of it with water. (Double boiling)

Bake 

  • Cover the pudding tray loosely with a foil or you can opt for not covering it
  • Gently place the double trays in the oven and bake for 40mins (Stab a skewer and check. If the tip of the skewer comes out clean then the pudding is done!)

Serve 

  • Let the pudding sit until completely cooled off
  • Place in the fridge
  • Cut into equal size squares and scrape them out, dipping a flat knife or a spatula to the bottom Then, scoop out some caramel juices and pour over the pudding squares before serving
  • Yummy!!

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Strawberry Jam – A very British, Strawberry Jam with white sugar in just 15 mins

Get the best British strawberries to make this jam for an unforgettable flavour! These beautiful strawberries, with their succulent juices and the beautiful red colour, will give a gorgeous ruby red shade to your jam and it will taste something from heaven!

I used normal granulated sugar in this recipe, which is bit more wallet-friendly than jam sugar used in my previous post of strawberry jam.  With jam sugar, you get a more jelly-like consistency, whereas, this recipe with white sugar,  gives a  softer, spreadable and more liquid like results.

I personally like this jam as it has a very homemade touch to it.  Lemon juice,  acts as pectin, in addition to  generously enhancing the taste.  The combination of these three ingredients is just heavenly and tastes very British too!

The most important advice about making this jam is that you should never exceed the cooking time even by a minute, which could potentially spoil everything right in front of your eyes.  Therefore, strictly stick to 20 minutes for the whole process of cooking.

You simply need the following 3 ingredients and a thick bottom wide pan :

 Juicy good quality strawberries washed and dried ( stem removed)  850
 White granulated sugar  740
 Lemon juice  1/2 lemon 


Summarised timings for your convenience:

  • 5 min – low flame – to  dissolve sugar
  • 15 min – high flame – to boil the syrup
  • 1 min – to settle

 Now, let’s make it,

  • Cut the strawberries into small pieces, leaving  little baby straws  or  bigger pieces here and there.  Finding a little whole strawberry, while spreading the jam on your toast, all unexpectedly  is a real joy!

  • Now drop sugar, lemon juice and strawberries in to a wide, heavy bottom pan.

strajam

  • Heat the pan under low flame for 5 mins allowing the sugar to dissolve.
  • Give a good stir and increase the flame to high.
  • Rapidly boil the syrup for exactly 15 mins while stirring now and again.
  • Remove the scum from top while it is boiling.
  • Immediately after 15 min, give a good stir and switch the flame off.
  • Let the jam sit in the pan just for 1 min.
  • Quickly, empty the whole pot to prepared jars and let them cool down.

straw jam1

  • Tightly  close the jars and place in the fridge, sticking a pretty label.
  • Mission accomplished !
  • Store in the fridge.

A very sweet afternoon tea time treat 

  • Warm up two crumpets in the microwave for 1 min.
  • Spread butter generously.
  • Spread a generous layer of jam on top.
  • Yum!

straw crum

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Caramel pudding – Steamed caramel pudding made with milk

caramel pudding

My favourite dessert since childhood, caramel pudding, is now my little son’s favourite too.  My mum used to make this with condensed milk which, undoubtedly had a very smooth, rich and creamier texture.  In the process of trying to produce a more healhier version,  I came across this recipe from an old recipe collection.  You can either steam this or bake in the oven.  However, steamed puddings always have a distict delicate texture, which I am addicted to.

Get ready with the following items:

 Whole milk  2 cups
 White sugar 3/4 cups
 Eggs (large)  4
 Vanilla essence lemon zest  1 tsp
Lemon zest (optional)  1/2 ts
 For the caramel
 White sugar  5 tbsp
 Water 3 tbsp

Let’s make it 

Heat it :

  • Pour milk into a pan and  heat up until it reaches the boiling point. (Do not boil)
  • Mix vanilla, switch off the flame and let the milk cool down.

Blend it / Whip it:

  • Drop sugar and eggs to the blender
  • Whizz just 5 seconds. (do not over do it as the sponginess of the pudding will be affected)
  • Now, slowly pour into the m
  • Whip with a hand whisker until frothy
  • Add vanilla and lemon zest

caramel ppp

Make the Caramel 

  • Drop sugar and  water into a small pan
  • Bring to boil
  • Let the syrup turn light brown. (Do not let it turn too dark as the syrup will taste bitter)
  • Add 1 tbsp of hot water and let the syrup bubble away for a minute and switch off the flame.
  • The caramel is ready now

Steam 

  • Pour the caramel into the pudding bowl and circle around so that the caramel stick onto the sides of the bowl
  • Rub butter all around the bowl
  • Pour the milky liquid in
  • Cover the top tightly with a foil
  • Place a close fitting plate on
  • Fill a large pan half with water
  • Drop a tea towel or place a saucepan stand on the bottom (This will prevent the pudding bowl shake too much while boiling and spilling out the liquid)
  • Dip the pudding bowl slowly into the middle of the pan
  • Cover the large pan with a foil or a tea towel first and then close with the lid.

caramel pppp

  • Place the pan on stove  under high flame and steam for 1 hr.  Check the water level half way and pour boiling water if needed.

caramel p

Cool it :

  • Take the pudding bowl out and let it cool off completely.
  • Place the bowl in the fridge.
  • Once chilled loosen from around

caramel pp

  • Then place a flat, wide plate on top of the pudding bowl and gently turn the bowl upside down
  • Give a gentle knock on the bottom of the bowl.
  • Slowly, lift the bowl up

caramel pudding1

  • Voila !!! your pudding is out, sitting primly with a pool of caramel juices
  • Cut nice triangles and serve with juices
  • Yummy !!!

Caramel pudding -bigTip: To make cute individual puddings for kids, use several ramekin bowls .

caramel pudding22011-11-19-RUP-pecan-pie-ramekins-bowls2-500w

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watalappan

Sri Lankan Watalappan – Made with jaggery and maggi coconut milk powder

watalappan

There is no better way to describe this pudding, usually reserved for special occasions as “a heavenly treat”.

This pudding has a Malay origin and is made with thick coconut milk and the solid form of coconut treacle, called “jaggery”.  Traditionally,  this is made by steaming in an aluminium pudding basin, dipped  into a large pan half filled with water.

However, you can also bake it in a Pyrex dish in the oven which is much easier.  If you fancy the original taste, do not hesitate to steam it . Either way, you will come to love it!!

I made this pudding using Maggi coconut milk powder which I found the best choice in the absence of real coconut milk and also, the texture of the pudding comes out  much firmer allowing you to cut into dainty squares.

So, give it a try today !!

What you need:

 Maggie Coconut Milk Powder 6 full tablespoons
Palm jaggery (Brown) 1 round
Brown sugar 2 tbsp
Nutmeg -grated (essential item for this pudding) 1 full tsp
Salt pinch
Eggs (large) 5
Water 1/2 cup

coconut jaggarypalm jaggery

Let’s make it :

  • Place the jaggery round in a bag and knock it with a rolling pin until powdered.

Blend it

  • Now, drop jaggery, eggs, coconut milk powder, grated nutmeg, salt and 2 tbsp of water into the blender jar.
  • Whiz only 30  seconds.  More mixing will loosen the pudding.
  • Sieve through a siever.

Oven it

  • Pour the liquid into a pudding basin, cover tightly with a foil and steam.  Or, pour into a Pyrex dish, cover with a foil, place the dish in a baking tray, half filled with water and bake in the oven at 200 C for 30 – 45 mins. (This is called double boiling method)
  • After 45 mins take the tray out, remove the cover slightly and insert a skewer and check if it comes clean.  If so, the pudding is ready!  If not, place it in the oven for another 10 mins.
  • Take the dish out, open the foil cover and let it cool off. (You can sprinkle some roasted or raw cashews on top at this point)

Serve it

  • Place the pudding in the fridge and cut into perfect squares before serving.
  • Yum !!

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Blackberry Jam – Homemade summer treat

blackberry jam4

Now that the summer is at its peak, blackberries are bursting on every bush, basking in golden sunshine, looking plump and juicy, trailing along, arching to the paths .  On our daily walks on tiny paths running through shady woods, I cannot resist picking handfuls of  juicy blackberries  with my little son in tow; we both end up gobbling them up.  Afterwards, it is all giggles and sticking our tongues out to check whose is the more purplish!!

The other day, I picked a basket of blackberries from the brambles and made this beautiful jam. I mentioned ‘beautiful’ because of its rich blend of  purple and magenta colours.  You can either pick them yourself  for free or just buy a punnet or two from the supermarket to make this jam.

 Not much complications, not many ingredients and as easy as it sounds, this is a real treat for this summer!!

All you need are :

  • 350 g Plump and juicy blackberries
  • 350 g caster sugar
  • 1/4 lemon

Let’s make it:

  • Place blackberries  in a heavy bottom pan so that they wont easily burn out.
  • On medium flame let them boil for 3-4 mins.  You will see all the juices from the fruits run out and bubbles foam on the top.

blackberry jam

  • Add 350 g caster sugar and lemon.  Stir through.
  • On medium flame, let them bubble away for 8  mins.  Keep stiring.
  • Switch the flame off and let the jam cool off in the pan itself.

blackberry jam2

  • Store in a glass bottle.
  • Enjoy on a buttered toast!!
  • Yummy !!

tip:

  • if you do not fancy the bits in it, mash the fruits with a wooden spoon while boiling.
  • store in the fridge.

blackberry4

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Semolina pudding

Rulang/Sooji/Semolina pudding – A Sweet Velvety Pudding

Semolina pudding

This  sweet treat, so light and  velvety is a real winner on a balmy summer day to serve around after the main meal or as an afternoon snack.  If you serving this to kids, you can even mix colours to make it more inviting!

It is so simple to make this, because you might probably have all the neccessary ingredients in your pantry cupboard rather than having to run to the shops.

Semolina is a good source of vitamin E and B, both are essential for good immunity.  Zinc and magnesium found in semolina are beneficial for the health of your bones and nervous system. Also it is a nourishing source of energy for kids and adults alike.

It is important that you cook the pudding until it comes to a ball and no longer sticky.  This right consistency will give your pudding the velvety texture and firmer squares when  it comes to cutting.

What you need to make it:

Semolina (Rulang/Sooji) 75 g
Sugar (white) 150 g
Butter 50 g
Milk 500 ml
Salt 2 pinches
Raisins 2 tbsp

Let’s make :

Divide it

  • Divide 500ml of milk into two parts.
  • Soak semolina in one half of milk
  • Keep aside the other half

Melt it

  • In a wide pan add 50g of butter and melt under low flame
  • Add the plain half of  milk and 150g of sugar and 3 pinches of salt
  • Boil until bubbles form on top while stiring continuously

Add Semolina

  • Reduce heat and add the other half of milk soaked with semolina.
  • Add currents.

Stir it

  • Keep stiring until thick.
  • The mixture will come together as a ball after 10 – 15 mins.

Pour it

  • Immediately, switch off the flame and pour the mixture into a Pyrex dish rubbed all sides with butter
  • Let the pudding cool off and place in the fridge
  • Once properly chilled, you can cut it into perfectly dainty squares.
  • Serve in a pretty dessert cup

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sago pudding

Sago Caramel Pudding – A cooling dessert for Summer!

Sawu, Sago or Sabudana are different names for Tapioca pearls made by using the white part of tapioca root which is starchy and is great for quick boost of energy.  It has an amazing  cooling effect on health issues caused by excess body heat such as: burning sensation while passing urine or inflamation on the eye lid called “Sty”.

This sago pudding is an ideal dessert in the summer season.  It’s the best way to reap all its health benefits while enjoying a yummy treat!  To enhance the taste and appearance, I added caramalised sugar which resulted a tempting golden brown colour with a glistening outer layer.

Sprinkle a handful of cranberry, golden sultanas, cashews or almonds on the top, before placing in the fridge.

Sago seeds

What you need:

Sago seeds  (small) 1/2 cup
Water 1 1/2 cup
Brown sugar(For caramel) 2 tbsp
Salt 3 pinces
Cinnamon powder 1 tsp
Raisins A fistful
Cashew for decorating (optional)
Fresh milk 1/2 cup
Brown sugar 4 tbsp

How to make it:

Soften Sago

  • Soak sago seeds in  water for an hour until the quantity doubles
  • Drain the water and keep aside.

Make the Caramel

  • Place 2 tbsps of brown sugar in the same pan that you are making the pudding
  • Heat it up on high flame.    Let the sides go dark brown  and bubbles bobbing in the middle
  • Pour 1 1/2 cup of water
  • Add the remaining 4 tbsp of sugar
  • boil for 2 mins

Add Sago

  • Add the soaked sago seeds and cook while stiring.  If the water is not enough add more.
  • Add  salt and cinnamon powder
  • Continue stirring until all sago is sticky and comes together and no water remains in the pan.

Add Milk

  • Quickly add milk
  • Drop raisins or sultanas
  • Cook continuously stirring for about 6, 7 minutes or until everything comes to a sticky lump
  • Pour the pudding into a Pyrex dish
  • Arrange cashew halves on top
  • Cover and place  in the fridge.
  • Cut into squares and serve, with little runny honey, maple syrup, golden syrup or coconut / Kitul treacle drizzled on top!!
  • Yummy !!

sawu pudding

 

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