Desserts/Sweets

Carrot Halwa (Gajar ka halwa)

Carrot Halwa

This post was sitting in my draft section since a very long time. I have prepared this ample amount of time but never really got to right down the measurements. And last week when I prepared this I made sure I am jotting down every single ingredient and measurement and finally got to post it.

Who doesn’t love gajar ka halwa in India or elsewhere, it’s the most popular sweet served in several occasions. Having a scoop of vanilla ice-cream is a greatest combination to have this sweet in my opinion!

Ingredients:

Carrots- 6 medium (grated)

Unsweetened khoya- 1/2 cup (grated)

Sugar- 1/2 cup

Ghee or clarified butter- 4 Tbsp

Cashew- 3 Tbsp

Raisins- 2 Tbsp

Cardamom powder- 1/2 tsp

Method:

Heat clarified butter in a pan on medium heat, then add cashews and sauté until light golden brown. Add raisins mix for 5-6 seconds and quickly remove the cashews and raisins leaving behind clarified butter in the pan.

Carrot Halwa

Now add the grated carrots and cook them nicely in the ghee (for 8-10 minutes).

Carrot Halwa

Add khoya give it a nice stir and lastly add  sugar.

Carrot Halwa

Mix and cook for 6-8 minutes until everything is well combined and comes together. Add in cardamom powder and mix.

Carrot Halwa

Garnish with cashews and raisins!

Carrot Halwa

Enjoy!!!

Carrot Halwa

Advertisements
Standard
Desserts/Sweets

Mysore pak

Mysorepak

Mysore pak is a sweet very popular in Karnataka,India. It just consist of three simple ingredients gram flour, sugar and ghee. I often make this sweet as its my husbands favorite sweet. It is simple to make but if the ingredients are not fresh and measured properly, there are chances of ruining the sweet.

This sweet is solely dedicated to Rukmini aunty (my friends mom) who actually taught me this recipe. She is an expert in making sweets. She was practically there with me when I tried it for the first time…I can never forget how well she taught me the technique. I always had filter coffee and a piece of Mysore pak when I visited her place. I miss those days!

You get the best mysore pak when the gram flour and ghee are fresh. Many people in my home town grind the chick pea fresh from the mill and use homemade ghee.

Ingredients:

Chick pea/Gram flour/ Besan-1 cup

Ghee/Clarified butter- 2 cups ( preferably homemade ghee)

Sugar- 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 cups

Water-3/4 cup

Preparation:

Add gram flour to the non stick pan and dry roast it for few minutes until the raw smell of the flour disappears and it turns light golden-yellow and keep aside.

Heat water in a pan on medium heat and add sugar, bring it to a two string consistency and add ½ cup of ghee. Turn the heat to low and  slowly add gram flour (one or two spoons at a time) and mix well after each addition making sure no lumps are formed. (if you are doing it for the first time, take the help of a second person while doing this step). You can bring back the heat to medium now.

Stir continuously and keep adding ghee slowly into the mixture and mix well. (When 2-3 tbsp of ghee is added at a time, the ghee starts floating on the gram flour mixture, do not panic.. stir continuously until it is well incorporated. Add the ghee and mix in the same fashion until all the ghee has been mixed well.) The mixture becomes thick and starts leaving porous bubbles. Its time to stir it well until it forms one big lump and leaves the pan from the sides. Turn off the heat and pour the mixture on a greased plate. Cut the sweet into desired pieces when mildly hot.

Mysorepakmysorepak

Standard
Cakes n bakes

Dark chocolate chip cookies

Dark chocolate chip cookies

Seeing my history of using dark chocolate, I don’t really have to explain how obsessed I am with dark chocolates. I always feel so good about making a fresh batch of cookies. Well these cookies are very similar to the one printed on the bag of Nestle’s Chocolate Chips. I prefer the cookies to be a bit chewy with caramelized edges and hence make use of both brown and white sugar.

Ingredients:

Unsalted butter– 1 cup

Granulated white sugar- 3/4 cup

Light brown sugar- 3/4 cup packed

Pure vanilla extract– 1 1/2 tsp

Large eggs- 2

Salt-1/4 tsp

Baking soda– 1tsp

All purpose flour– 2 1/4 cup

dark chocolate chips– 1 1/2 cup

Preparation:

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degree F and line the baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl,  using an electric mixer, beat the butter until smooth. Add white and brown sugar and beat until fluffy. Add in eggs one at a time making sure you beat well after each addition. Add in the vanilla extract and mix well.

In a separate bowl combine all the dry ingredients and mix well. Add the mixture slowly to the liquid mixture and mix well until no lumps are visible. Add in the chocolate chips and give it a nice stir. If the dough is very soft, refrigerate for an hour.

cookie dough

Using two spoons drop about two tbsp of dough onto the baking sheet. Make sure there is enough spacing between the dough to rise and flatten. Bake for 12- 14 minutes and cool it completely on a wire rack before tasting!

Dark chocolate chip cookies

Standard
Cakes n bakes

Dark chocolate brownies

Brownies

Brownies are wonderful “cakey” or “fudgy” type of dessert which goes superbly well with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or just plain…Am I right? I have tried many different type of brownies and this recipe brings me a complete satisfaction in terms of slight crispness on the outside and soft chewy texture on the inside. Addition of dark chocolate morsels gives it a nice chocolatey flavor and no one can eat just one!

Servings- 16 pieces

Ingredients:

All purpose flour- 3/4 cup

Sugar- 1 cup

Salt- 1/4 tsp

Pure vanilla extract- 1tsp

Large eggs- 3 at RT

Unsalted butter- 1 stick or 1/2 cup (cut into squares)

Dutch processed cocoa powder- 2 tbsp

Bitter sweet chocolate chopped- 5 oz

Dark chocolate morsels- 3/4 cup

Preparation:

Pre heat the oven to 350 degree F. In a medium heat proof saucepan, add bitter-sweet chocolate and pieces of unsalted butter.

Brownies

Microwave for a minute or 2 until the mixture forms a smooth paste. (Do not boil the mixture, they have to just melt). Add sugar, pure vanilla extract and mix well. Add in the eggs one by one and give it a quick stir. Now add, all-purpose flour, cocoa powder and salt.

Brownies

Mix until no lumps are visible. Finally add the dark chocolate morsels and stir. Pour the mixture to a 8 inch greased square pan.

Brownies

Bake for 25-30 minutes. Perfect brownies are done when little crumbs stick to the tooth pick when inserted.

Dark chocolate brownies

Dark chocolate browniesDark chocolate brownies

Standard
Cakes n bakes

Super moist chocolate cupcakes

Chocolate cupcake

Well the word chocolate itself is mouth-watering to me! And I bet there are many chocoholics out there. I have tried many versions of chocolate cupcakes and I am very sure I will stick with recipe from now on. These cupcakes are so moist that you feel like having more of it. I had taken these cupcakes for a potluck party at my workplace and it was no doubt a great hit 🙂 All thanks to joy of baking which had this wonderful cupcake recipe which I fell in love with. Just changed the original recipe a bit for my taste buds and here I present the recipe to you all…

Ingredients:

1/2 cup – Dutch processed dark cocoa powder

1 cup – boiling water

1 1/3 cup –  Sifted all-purpose flour

2 tsp Baking powder

1/2 cup room temperature unsalted butter

1/4 tsp salt

1 1/4 cup – Granulated white sugar

2 – Large eggs

1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Frosting:

4 ounces – Unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped

2/3 cup Unsalted butter, room temperature

1 1/3 cups – Sifted powdered sugar or icing sugar

1 1/2 tsp  Pure vanilla extract

Preparation:

Pre-heat the oven to 375°F Line 16 cupcake liners and keep it ready. Whisk all the dry ingredients like salt, baking powder and all-purpose flour, keep aside. In another bowl mix the hot water and cocoa powder until smooth and bring the mixture to room temperature.

Chocolate cupcake

Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, use a hand mixer or an electric mixer. Add the eggs one at a time and beat in vanilla extract.

Chocolate cupcake

Slowly add the flour mixture until everything is incorporated. Finally add the cocoa mixture and mix everything well.

Chocolate cupcake

Add the mixture to the cupcake liners until they are 2/3rd full.

chocolate cupcake

Bake for 17-19 minutes until tooth pick inserted comes out clean. Do not over bake the cupcakes as they will lose the moistness. Remove from oven and cool them on a wire rack.

chocolate cupcake

chocolate cupcake

Once the cupcakes cools,you can smear the frosting on the cupcake using a spatula or if you have a piping, use a large 1M thick open star tip to make the swirls on the cupcake.

Frosting:

Melt the chocolate pieces in the microwave or place the  heat proof bowl with chocolate  on a saucepan of simmering water. Mix it until it melts and forms a smooth texture.

chocolate cupcake

In another bowl beat the butter well, add the powdered sugar and beat again. Mix it until smooth and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract and the melted chocolate, beat until smooth and glossy for about 3-4 minutes.

chocolate cupcake

Smear or add into the piping and decorate the cupcakes as you like!

chocolate cupcake

Standard
Cakes n bakes

Mexican wedding cake

Mexican wedding cakes

Mexican wedding cakes also known as Russian tea cakes or butter cookies are very delicious and just melts in the mouth. As butter is the main ingredient, it is very important to use a high quality butter to get a rich taste. Use of any kind of nuts gives a very nice nutty flavor and taste.

Ingredients:

Butter- 1 cup (room temperature)

All purpose flour– 2 cups

confectionary sugar 1/2 cup + 1 cup

Walnuts, pecans or hazelnuts 2/3 cup toasted and powdered

Vanilla extract– 1/2 tsp

Salt -1/4 tsp

Preparation:

Toast the nuts at 350°F for 8 to 10 minutes until light brown, cool down before grinding to get a powdered mixture or else you will end up getting a lump. Use a hand mixer or food processor to mix the butter and 1/2 cup of confectionary sugar until smooth and creamy. Add in vanilla extract and mix again. In a separate bowl mix salt and all-purpose flour. Add the flour slowly and mix it completely until incorporated. Finally add the nut mixture and bring the mixture into a dough. Wrap the dough and refrigerate for an hour.

Mexican wedding cake

Preheat the oven to 350°C. Spray the cookie sheet with baking spray or use a  parchment paper. Scoop 1 tbsp or 100 oz of mixture, make it in to a round shape and line up the dough 2 inches apart.

Mexican wedding cake

Bake for 12-15 minutes until the edges and the bottom just turn light golden brown.

Mexican Wedding Cake

Spread 1 cup of confectionary sugar on a flat bottom. As soon as the cookies are out of the oven, take a spatula and slowly grab the cookie and toss and turn the cookie in the sugar. The cookie should be completely coated with sugar. If you not a sugar person as I am, you can just sprinkle some sugar on top as well. Make sure you cool it completely before tasting it!

Mexican wedding cake

Mexican wedding cake

Standard
Cakes n bakes

Chocolate dipped coconut macaroon

I was looking for a coconut biscuit or cookie recipe on the net and got hooked to these delicious coconut macaroon recipe. I have had this couple of times at my friends place but never clicked to make it at home or I guess was just lazy to bake it. I was on a marathon of baking bread, cakes and cookies last few days. This was on the list too. These cookies are so delicious that I never could eat just one. They are crispy from the outside, soft and chewy from the inside. Dipping these in chocolate syrup gives an incredibly awesome taste. (I could not wait until the chocolate hardened, started munching on it when it was half done). 🙂

Ingredients:

Sweetened shredded coconut- 11/2 cup

All purpose flour– 1/4 cup

Sugar– 1/2 cup

Egg whites– 2

Vanilla essence– 1/2 Tsp

Salt- 1/8 tsp

For chocolate dipping:

Heavy cream- 1/2 cup

Dark chocolate/ semi- dark chocolate -14 oz

Preparation:

In a heatproof bowl, placed over a pan of warm water, whisk both egg white and sugar. Remove from heat when the mixture is warm to touch and creamy.

Add in salt, vanilla essence, sifted all purpose flour and sweetened shredded coconut and mix well. Cover this mixture and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.  

On a baking sheet, add a parchment paper or aluminium foil and place a scoop of mixture leaving spaces in between. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 350°F or until it turns golden brown.

Allow the cookies to completely cool down. (We can have these by themselves or coat them with chocolate). In a small bowl, add heavy cream and heat until it comes to a boil. Now add chocolate pieces or chips and allow it to settle for 2-3 minutes. Mix them evenly, dip the bottom of the cookies and on top, decorate the cookies as per your wish. Allow it to completely dry before you put them into a air tight container.

°

Standard