Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Perk up your Holi!

Thandai Ice Cream

Refreshing and so traditional for Holi, Thandai is a great base for many desserts. Here is a easy homemade recipe for ice cream that has no eggs nor does it need any fancy equipment. Enjoy this spring festival - and have a great time with friends and family.


500 ml. Fresh Dairy Cream
1/2 tin Condensed Milk
1/2 cup Milk
2 tablespoons Thandai Masala (see recipe below or use store bought)
1/4 cup chopped Pistachios
1/2 teaspoon Saffron
1 tablespoon Dried, crushed Rose Petals (Optional)

  • In a pan, add half the cream, milk, saffron and thandai masala. Gently bring it to a simmer. Simmer for 5 minutes. Set aside to cool. 
  • Once cool to touch, add remaining cream and condensed milk. 
  • Use a hand blender to whisk for 5 minutes till mixture is creamy. 
  • Fold in pistachios and rose petals if using. Pour the mixture into a freezer proof container or small earthen pots and freeze for at least 8 hours or overnight. 
  • Top with more pistachios before serving.

Thandai Masala


1/2 cup Cashewnuts
1/4 cup Pistachio
1/4 cup Almonds
10 Whole Black Peppercorns
6 Small Green Cardamoms
2 tablespoons Melon Seeds 
2 tablespoons Fennel Seeds 
2 tablespoons Rose Petals
1 tablespoon Poppy Seeds 
15 strands Saffron


  • In a coffee grinder or mortar and pestle, grind together all the ingredients above into a smooth powder.

Monday, March 14, 2016

It's Quiz time!

Q.1 What does the term "blind baking" refer to?
    a) Baking without weighing any of the ingredients
    b) Baking a pie crust without its filling
    c)Baking cakes in an unusual French tin called a "blind"

Q.2 What is traditional ratio of sugar to butter and flour in shortbread?
    a) Two parts sugar, one part butter, two parts flour
    b) One part sugar, two parts butter, and three parts flour
    c)One part sugar, one part butter, one part flour

 Q.3 If you use eggs straight from the fridge when baking, what will often go wrong?
   a) The mixture will curdle
   b) The mixture will be lumpy
   c) The cake won't rise

 Q.4 What is a Bundt pan?
   a) A specialist kind of flan mould
   b) A German tin for making waffles
   c) A ring-shaped cake tin

 Q.5 Which one of these is not a traditional ingredient in a Yorkshire pudding cake?
    a) Orange zest
    b) Treacle
    c) Oats
    d) Ginger

 Q.6 What is royal icing?
   a) A rich icing made from chocolate and cream
   b) A soft icing made from sugar and butter
   C) A hard icing made from egg whites, icing sugar and sometimes lemon juice

Q.7 What kind of pastry are chocolate eclairs and profiteroles made from?
   a) Filo pastry
   b) Choux pastry
   c) Shortcrust pastry

Q.8 The outside of a loaf is called the crust. What is the inside called?
    a) The dough
    b) The bread
    c) The crumb

Q.9 What kind of flour will make your cake the crumbliest?
   a) all-purpose flour
   b) cake flour
   c) pastry flour
   d) cake flour

Q.10 Add baking powder to your cake and it rises. What is in baking powder that makes this happen?
    a) yeast
    b) baking soda plus cornstarch
    c) baking soda, an acid, and cornstarch

Q.11 About how much white flour can you swap out of the average recipe for the whole-wheat variety?
    a) one quarter of the white flour can be substituted for whole-wheat flour
    b) half of the white flour can be substituted for whole-wheat flour
    c) all of the white flour can be substituted for whole-wheat flour

Q1- a
Q2- b
Q3- a
Q4- c
Q5- a
Q6- c
Q7- b
Q8- c
Q9- b

Friday, March 11, 2016

Refreshing Green Papaya Salad

To shred the green papaya, use a vegetable peeler to remove the outer skin, then cut the fruit in half lengthwise and scoop out and discard the seeds. Using the largest holes of a box grater, shred the flesh into thin shards.

Serves 4


1 Thai red chili
2 Tbsp. rice vinegar
Salt to taste
250 g green beans, trimmed
1 cup (180 g) cherry tomatoes, halved
1 green papaya, about 500 g, peeled and seeded
3 carrots, peeled

For the dressing:
3 garlic cloves
3 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 Tbsp. vinegar
1/2 tsp. salt

Chopped green onions, cilantro leaves and roasted peanuts for garnish


  • Thinly slice the chili and place in a small bowl. Cover with the vinegar and set aside for at least 15 minutes while you prepare the other ingredients.
  • Fill a saucepan two-thirds full of water and bring to a boil over high heat. When the water is boiling, add 1 Tbsp. salt and the green beans. Blanch the green beans until bright green and crisp-tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain the green beans, rinse under cold running water to cool and drain again. Thinly slice the green beans on the diagonal into 2-inch pieces and transfer to a large bowl. Add the tomatoes to the bowl with the green beans.
  • Shred the papaya and then shred the carrots. Add the papaya and carrots to the bowl with the green beans and tomatoes. Drain the chiles and add to the bowl with the vegetables; discard the vinegar.
  • To make the dressing, use a motar pestle/ food processor and combine the garlic, brown sugar, lime juice, soy sauce, vinegar and salt and process until smooth, about 30 seconds.
  • Add the dressing to the vegetables and toss to combine. Season with salt to taste. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with the green onions, cilantro leaves and roasted peanuts. 
  • Serve immediately, happy eating!