Eton Mess – Best Ever!

Who can resist this indulgent, sweet strawberry dessert? The occasional crunch of the meringues in the silky smooth cream, drenched in the sweet strawberry sauce and the taste of fresh juicy strawberries, make it simply heavenly!

Eton Mess is a traditional English dessert, commonly believed to be served at the annual cricket match at Eton College. Much loved for its finest taste and luxury appearance, Eton mess is very popular in the summer season in England.

The best news is that it takes only a few minutes to whip it up! Gather the ingredients needed and it’s just a case of whipping the cream and wrapping all in it! Then, grab a spoon and let your taste buds go dancing!

Serve on a scoop of vanilla ice-cream or just decorate a cake with it to give it a luxury taste and appearance!

Ingredients needed:

For the strawberry sauce
Juicy strawberries200g and a cup full for garnishing
Sugar3 1/2 tbsp
Lemon juice1 tsp
Water1 tbsp
For the whipped cream
Double cream – whipped cream200ml
Icing sugar3 tbsp
Lemon juice3 drops
For Meringues
Buy a packet of good quality meringues from a supermarket

Let’s whip it:

Opt for juicy strawberries

First, make the strawberry sauce

  • Place strawberries, sugar, lemon juice and water together in a pan and heat up gently until the strawberries are softened and floating in a sauce. This will take about 10-15 mins.
  • Send the sauce through a sieve to get a clear liquid without any seeds
  • Keep aside to cool.

Next, whip the cream

Eton Mess will be a messy and an undesirable lump, if the cream is not whipped into perfection. It is very important to place the cream, the mixing pins and the mixing bowl in the fridge until needed.

  • Take the cream, mixing pins and mixing bowl out of the fridge and immediately pour cream into the bowl
  • Now start whipping at medium speed and gradually increase the speed to maximum. You will notice the cream thickens while being beaten
  • Add icing sugar little by a little while beating in full power
  • Drop the lemon juice
  • Beat until soft peaks form. Check the sweetness and you can add a bit more icing sugar into it to take the sweetness a little further

Assemble – the best part!

  • Slice a cup full of strawberries into thin slices and drop into the cream
  • Add some of the strawberry sauce
  • Crush some meringues and drop
  • Mix all together
  • Decorate with more strawberries, sauce sprinkled on the top and meringue scattered on.
  • Serve chilled!
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Best Chocolate Brownies -Blitz In The Blender And Baked To Perfection

This is the easiest and the yummiest Chocolate Brownies I have ever made! I mentioned “easiest” here, because the batter is made in seconds by dropping all the ingredients into a kitchen blender and blitz together just for 5 seconds!

Originated from the United States in the 19th century, Brownies are crispy and crackly on the top, fudgy in the centre, chewy and caky at the same time. It is a cake and it is not! The difference is no baking powder or self – raising flour are added, so the batter does not rise. Instead, it becomes chewy and fudgy while baking.

So, let’s make these beauties and serve them around, at tea time! Or you can drop a few on top of vanilla ice-cream and serve with a little dash of chocolate sauce to make it a gorgeous dessert!

You can also, drop them into a transparent bag, tie a ribbon and make a pretty gift for a friend! Once you made them, serving ideas will come flooding! So, let’s get ready with the ingredients and give it a try;

Ingredients needed:

Plain Flour100g
Butter/Margarine100 g
Sugar250 g
Eggs2
Cocoa powder1 tbsp
Milk2 tbsp
Milk chocolate 125g
Vanilla 1 tsp
Salt3 pinches

Let’s make:

  • Melt milk chocolates, milk, salt and cocoa powder together on a pan or in the microwave. Mix well. Keep aside
  • Add butter and sugar into a pan and heat gently while stirring until the sugar dissolves and let it cool. You can use the microwave for this purpose.
  • Add the eggs into a blender. Whiz only for 3 seconds.
  • Add butter and sugar mixture, chocolate syrup and vanilla. Whiz for 5 seconds
  • Add flour. Whiz for 5 seconds. Your batter is ready!
  • Pour into a glass or Pyrex dish lined with a parchment paper
  • Bake for 20-25 mins
  • Let the baked brownie sheet cool off completely
  • Dip a sharp knife in boiling water, wipe clean and cut squares
  • Store in an air-tight box
  • Taste even better the next day!
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Trifle Pudding – A yummy, fruity treat for this Christmas

Enjoy making this beautiful Fruit Trifle Pudding, making Christmas special for everyone!

This is an ideal dessert choice for any occasion as its glorious appearance and the delicious taste is a real winner among any other yummy treats. The traditional English Trifle Pudding recipe includes generous dollops of whipped cream, which I deliberately avoided adding and went for custard cream instead, to give this pudding a lighter texture so that you won’t feel too heavy after tasting it!

Any selection of seasonal fruits would go well with this recipe, but remember not to omit pineapples, as it alone gives the distinct taste and flavour to this pudding. Also, make the sponge cake Jelly in two colours and the custard cream, the day before to make the whole process easier. I have given the recipe of the sponge cake below, which is the best choice for this pudding; normal butter cake/pound cake/fruit cake cannot give the ideal texture and taste, unlike the homebaked sponge cake. Other cakes crumble, whereas the sponge cake stays neat and nice, absorbing the juices and contributing a great deal to the overall taste.

So, let’s make this super easy, delicious pudding to give your family a delightful surprise at Chrismas!

Let’s see what are the ingredients you need;

Sponge cake (thinly sliced) Recipe given below1
Pineapple (stewed) Recipe given below1
Condensed milk2/3 tbsp
Custard cream (Vanilla flavour)-Make according to the
instructions given in the packet
2 mugs
Strawberries, apples, grapes (red & green), raspberries, blackberries, cherries or any other fruit
(If you take bananas, slice and sprinkle some lemon to prevent blackening)
1- 2 cup each
Jelly in red and green colours2 cups
Tuti fruiti1 cup
Cashews (optional)
Sultana (optional)
Ingredients – Sponge cake slices, jelly, stewed pineapples, custard cream, tuti fruiti and sliced fruits

Let’s assemble all to produce this beautiful trifle;

  • Choose a tall Pyrex dish and arrange a neat layer of sliced cakes on the bottom
  • Arrange strawberries around the dish which will look pretty from outside. You can arrange grapes, bananas or any other fruit of your choice
  • Pour some pineapple syrup on the cake slices
  • Scatter some pineapple pieces on top
  • Cover with a thin layer of custard cream
  • Now, arrange a layer of jelly cubes
  • Throw any kind of fruit pieces on top
  • Again, a layer of cakes must be arranged
  • A dash of pineapple syrup and pineapple chunks must go next
  • Custard cream
  • Fruits
  • Jelly
  • Cakes
  • The layers must continue until you reach the top
  • Pour 2tbsp of condensed milk
  • Smear a layer of custard cream as the last layer
  • Arrange strawberry slices or any other fruits and decorate attractively
  • Sprinkle tuti fruiti, cashews, sultanas or any dry fruit pieces
  • Store in the fridge for at least 8hrs, preferably overnight
  • All the juices will get soaked up and blended beautifully when you serve. Cut into squares and serve on dainty dessert plates
  • Enjoy!

Sponge Cake Recipe

Ingredients :

Eggs4
Sugar120g
Flour120g
Butter50g
Milk60ml
Baking Powder1tsp
Lemon3/4 drops
Salt3 pinches

Make it:

  • Set the Oven at 160C
  • Melt the butter on a pan under low heat. Mix half of sugar, milk and salt. Keep aside
  • Separate the egg whites and yolks taking care not to mix even a tiny bit of egg yolks in egg whites
  • Beat egg whites in full speed using an electric hand mixer for 1 min
  • Continue beating while adding the rest of sugar and lemon juice
  • Notice the egg whites become stiff and start forming peaks after 2/3 mins. Stop beating at this point
Egg whites form into peaks!
  • Whisk the egg yolks and add the butter mixture. Whisk until all combined
  • Gradually add flour + baking powder and mix thoroughly with a spatula or a wooden spoon until everything comes together as a smooth batter
  • Now, add the egg yolks into this batter and mix everything together
  • Pour into a tray, lined up with parchment paper and bake in the lower tier of the oven for 15/20 mins or until a skewer comes out clean when stabbed in the middle
  • Take the cake out of the oven and drop the tray 2/3 times on the pantry top to loosen the edges. Take out from the tray and leave to cool completely
  • Cut into thin dainty slices

Pineapple Stew Recipe

  • Cut a juicy, riped pineapple into chunks
  • Drop the chunks into a pan with a 1/4 cup of sugar and 1/2 cup of water with a pinch of salt
  • Simmer under very low flame until the pineapple pieces become very soft
  • Check the taste. If the sugar is not enough, add a little bit more
  • If the syrup is less you can add a bit more water and simmer a little longer
  • Done!
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Undu Walalu recipe

Undu Walalu /Pani Walalu “Gold Bangles”

undu walalu/pani walalu

Sinhalese and Tamils in Sri Lanka welcome this most prominent cultural festival known as Aluth Awurudda or New Year on the 14th of April annually. It is also known as the Sun festival, based on the astrological point of view that, Sun’s journey from the House of Pieces to the House of Aries is completed on this day.

The whole country gets together to celebrate this occasion on grand scale by making many traditional sweetmeats, dressing up in traditional costumes and playing traditional games.

These gold bangles are a very popular sweet during this time and I am thankful to my mum for passing this recipe on to me as I am now quite confident in making them myself.

I believe this is the easiest and the yummiest sweet that you can rustle up just before the New Year day. I am sure everybody will love to indulge in these, gladly forgetting their diet plans!

So let’s make them and pass them around to spread happiness and goodwill.

Ingredients needed;

Undu seeds /Urind whole (white)1 cup
Rice flour (shop-bought)1/2 cup
Salt1/8 tsp
Fresh coconut milk or Maggi coconut milk1/4 cup
For the sugar syrup
Brown sugar4/3 cup
Water 2 cups
Salt4 pinches

Let’s make ;

Soak Undu/Urind

  • Soak Undu/Urind seeds in water overnight or at least for 6hrs
  • Next day, drain the water and drop the soaked Undu/Urind into the blender jar
  • Add salt, coconut milk, rice flour and blitz in high speed until it turns into a thick but very smooth consistency. Add more water little by little until the expected consistency appears.
  • Cover and keep aside for 1hr
Batter is ready

Make the Sugar Syrup

  • Meanwhile, take a wide heavy bottom or a nonstick pan and pour in the sugar, salt and water
  • Boil twice
  • Simmer for 3-4 mins under medium flame until the liquid goes syrupy
  • Give a good stirring and check the taste. If more salt or sugar is needed, adjust the taste accordingly. Simmer for another couple of minutes, close the flame.

Fry and soak in sugar syrup – Final step

Making swirls
Deep frying until golden
Tefal Non-stick frying pan perfect for the job
Dip in the sugar syrup
  • Take a freezer bag/piping bag/thick plastic bag and cut one of the bottom edges slightly
  • Pour oil into a wide pan and heat under medium flame
  • Drop a small ball from the batter to the hot oil and fry. check the taste. Add a pinch or more salt if necessary.
  • Drape the bag inside a cup and pour the Undu/Urind batter into it
  • Gather the bag from the top
  • Carefully squeeze the batter into hot oil while making perfect rounds
  • Fry both sides until golden brown. Take out of the frying pan and keep aside for a minute. Fry again for 30 seconds. This will make them go crispier.
  • Drop the golden brown rounds into the sugar syrup
  • Start frying the next batch
  • Pick the batch that is already in the sugar syrup using a skewer and place on a plate
  • Continue the same process until the batter is finished (remember to keep the sugar syrup always warm. If it goes cold, warm it up under medium flame for a few mins)
  • You are now an owner of a tower of golden bangles!
  • Serve around and celebrate the festive occasion in good spirit!

Important tips:

  • If you have access to Kitual/Coconut treacle and Jaggary, add both or just one kind in place of sugar for a healthier and tastier version of these. You can combine either of those and sugar too.
  • Remember to fry twice to make them crispier
  • Choose a flat pan so that you can fry several of them at the same time
  • Sugar syrup must be always hot. If it goes cold in the middle of the process, heat the pan again for a minute
  • It is advisable to make one and taste it first and adjust the taste if needed, before starting the whole process
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Chocolate Set Jelly

Chocolate Jelly Fudge – Heavenly Chocolaty Dessert

Chocolate Set Jelly

Let’s indulge in this beautiful, yummy, chocolaty jelly dessert!

I was very careful in bringing the calorie level down while experimenting with this recipe so that everybody could enjoy these beautiful dainty chocolate jelly fudge cubes without feeling guilty after eating. Hence, I added 1 cup of water, something that you can replace with milk – if you desire a more milky taste.

Remember to add double the amount of water to gelatine so that the cubes will come out firm and nice. Also, washing the dish with cold tap water, before pouring the mixture in it, is vital as it helps in cutting neat pieces without any broken edges. The other important tip is that you must place the dish in the fridge overnight, which in turn will bring out the real fudge-like texture.

You will need the following ingredients :

Milk chocolates ( I used Cadbury milk choc)100 g
Fresh milk1 1/2 Cups
Water1 cup
Gelatine 3 tbsp + 6tbsp water
Cocoa powder1 tbsp
White sugar5 tbsp
Vanilla essence
Pyrex glass Borosilicate dish

Let’s make it;

  • Mix gelatine and water and keep aside until gelatine is soft
  • Meanwhile, pour milk and water into a wide pan
  • Into the same pan, add cocoa powder, white sugar and chocolates
  • Boil
  • Reduce the flame and add the soften gelatine
  • Boil
  • Reduce flame, add vanilla, cover and simmer for 3 mins. This will help in dissolving chocolates quickly
  • Wash a pyrex dish in cold water to make it easier to cut dainty jelly pieces
  • Now pour the mixture to the dish
  • Leave to cool
  • Place in the fridge (Ideally overnight for the jelly to set firmly)
  • Cut into neat squares
  • Serve in pretty dessert cups
  • Yummy!
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Diwali tuti fruiti laddoos

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

Diwali Sweets

These Semolina laddoos 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 / Sooji1 full cup
Castor Sugar(if you are taking granulate sugar grind until smooth)1/2 cup
Milk3 tbsp
Butter2 tbsp
Salt2 pinches
Tuti Fruiti 
Cardamom powder2 pinches
Vanilla2 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 !!

 

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.

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

Kitchen Essentials

This blender by Kenwood is durable and its sharp blades make the job so much easier; the whole process goes on smoothly in no time. The best blender I can recommend for cooking enthusiasts.




  • 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!!

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