Thursday, July 30, 2009


It was my FIL's birthday on July 9. But for some reason he was not in town and we decided to celebrate the same once he comes back. Since i had a good time in my hand to plan for the cake. Decided to try some other recipe other than normal sponge recipe. In such scenario,best place to hunt for good and different recipe is Joy of Baking . While browsing thorugh cake section , i stumbled upon the Chocolate Genoise and just thought to give it a try. I decided to frost it with cream. In Pune, we dont find heavy whipping cream. My only saviour is Amul's cream (25%) but the atmosphere was hot during the rainy season(as there was no rain) and i could not get the cream whipped properly so it was bit running. But it's okay. All along my FIL was observing me putting all the efforts to create a good cake for his Belated Birthday. Finally the layers were put together and frosted with bit runny cream and decorated with chocolate shavings on top. I tried creating some design on the sides by pressing fork on sides. I can achieve a little suceess. And the cake went into fridge to mature the flavours.
Needless to say , the cake was awesome !!!! Every one liked the cake very much and in no time it was out of sight. My father in law was very happy.


Sundays are basically meant for lazing around. After a hectic week , you definitely deserve a break to break away from all routines. For my family, it’s a heavy breakfast followed by a light lunch further followed by a good afternoon sleep or a running aimlessly through the TV channels and evening outing. I was trying to figure out for a good, tasty and healthy breakfast and finally zeroed in on apna DOSA, accompanied with masala (Potato subzi)and coconut chutney. My personal favorite is thinnest Dosa with garamagaram Chai.
Here goes the recipe :-

Ingredients :-

Rice :- 1 cup

Bolied Rice :- 1 Cup

Urad Dal :- 1/2 Cup

Fenugreek Seeds :- 1/2 tsp

Salt as per taste

Oil/Butter as per taste bud preferences

Recipe :-

  • Soak both the rice, urad dal and fenugreek seeds in waterfor 5-6 hrs.
  • Grind into the smooth batter and leave it overnite to ferment.
  • Next day chcek the consistency of the batter. If it is too thick, add a little water.
  • Heat the non-stick pan, and pour the batter over it and spread it over it.
  • Drizzle with oil or butter. Turn and let it fry for few seconds.
  • Serve hot with Masala and coconut chutney.


In Malvani , it is called GHAVAN. Made from only rice and no fermentation required for this Dosa. It is prepared on an Cast Iron Griddle , something which can be found in every Malvani house. We have grown up consuming these dosas with a cup of hot CHAI. On festival days , it is accompanied with RAS , which makes it prefect as sweet dish also. On my recent trip to Malvan, i found out how lucky we are !!! We were visiting Tarkarli beach and in one of the nearby Hotel , 2 ghavans were sold for Rs.25/-. OMG and people were paying for it!! I think i have always understimated these pretty white beauties. Same day morning , my mom had prepared these white beauties with green mango chutney for breakfast. My husband did not count how much he ate. After looking at the price , he was little embarassed. But it actually doesn't cost that much. Here is the recipe :-


Ingredients :-

Rice :- 1 cup (Soaked in water for 4/5 hrs)

Salt :- As per taste

Oil for applying to griddle

Recipe :-

  • Grind the rice to paste with water . Add more water till you get liquid consistency. Add salt to it.
  • Oil the griddle uniformely and pour the batter. Cover it and let it cook for 1 mins.
  • With the help of a spatula , lift the dosa from one side till centre and fold it on the other half.
  • Finally remove from the griddle and place it in dish. It taste best when served warm with chutney.

One can also serve the same with SWEET COCONUT RAS as a sweet dish.


Fresh Coconut :- 1 cup

Cardamoom :- 3-4 crushed

Jaggery :- 3/4th cup

Cummins :- 1/2 teaspoon

Recipe :-

  • Grind the coconut and cummins seeds.
  • Add water to it and squeez the coconut milk.
  • Now add jaggery and cardamom powder and mix it till jaggery melts in coconut milk. Add a bit of turmeric powder.

The Coconut Ras is ready to be served with GHAVAN.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

RAVA LADOO - Its quite nutty and healthy too

Entire credit for this Laddoo goes to my Mother and SIL. They just wanted to make this laddoo very healthy and fulfilling. We (females) work day and night to feed our family. Toys with different ideas to make fulfilling breakfast , lunches and dinners . But dont you think there has to be something which is handy enough for us to eat so that we can go on and on and on... This laddoo is perfect . One laddoo with a cup of milk/coffee or tea as per your preference is enough to kickstart the day . Here is the recipe :-
Semolina :- 1/2 kg
Ghee :- As per requirement
Cashews & Almond :- 1 cup (Coarsley ground)
Raisins :- 1/2 -1/4 cup as per liking
Roasted fenugreek seeds :- 1/2 teaspoon (Depending upon taste u can reduce or increase)
Eddible gum :- 1 teaspoon
Powdered Sugar :- As per taste
Cardamom Powder :- 1 teaspoon
  • Roast the semolina in ghee till it emits the flavour.
  • Roast the eddible gum in ghee till it puff up. Then grind it properly .Grind the fenugreek seeds.
  • Mix the semolina, powdered sugar , grounded fenugreek seeds, almond and cashew powder, cardamom powder and raisins thouroughly.
  • Now slowly add the ghee (clarified butter) till all the material comes together for binding.
  • Bind the laddo and shape them in round.

Here is your healthy , tasty and nutty laddoos are ready to be finished. This laddoos are also good for snacks for children.

Sunday, June 28, 2009


As I have already mentioned on my blog that Lord Ganesha is my favourite God and we do Puja on Sankashti Chaturthi every month and offer HIM piping hot Steamed Modak . For past few such chaturthi's my steamed modak were not turning the way it has to be , thanks to the store brought rice flour . Last Chaturthi I decided to prepare fried Modak. We thought even Bappa needs some change in taste. (Bappa or we ? Anyways) . So I logged on to my favorute marathi site to find a recipe. The site is in marathi. So those who can not read the same in marathi , following is the translation :-

Fried Modak:
Grated Coconut :- 2 cup
Jaggery :- 1 cup
Cardamom Powder :- 1 tsp
Maida :- 1 cup
Semolina ;- 1 cup
Pinch of salt
Hot Oil :- 2-3 tsp
Cashew Nuts :- Optional (Since I belong to konkan , i always have a good supply of cashews so i keep using the same in many of the recipes in which it will add flaour to it)
For Frying :-
Oil or Vanaspati or Ghee
  • Mix the jaggery , a bit if ghee (clarified butter) and scrapped coconut in thick bottomed pan till the mixture is uniform and has no lumps of jaggery.
  • Mix Semolina , salt and Maida thouroughly and add 3 tspn very hot oil to it and mix well . Knead the flour , preferable in milk or water and cover and keep it aside for an hour.Knead the flour well and make small puris.
  • Take the puris on your palm and put the filling on it and bring together the ends in form of plates and form a tip and seal the same. Repeat the procedure for rest of dough balls.(Cover all the modaks with wet cloth to avoid drying resulting in cracking)
  • Fry all the Modaks in oil or ghee or Vanaspati till light golden.

Modaks were really good and tasted amazing. A must try for those who are not lucky enough with Steamed Modak.

Friday, June 26, 2009


One such Sunday evening , wanted to prepare something for snacks and what is better than a coffee cake. I have already had Yellow butter cake in mind which I had seen on one of my favorite baking site "Joy of Baking" . This is kinda a easy fix cake . I skipped the chocolate frosting. Earlier I had prepared this cake with frosting and my husband was of opinion that cakes for snacks shall be without frosting so this time i had avoided the frosting. And to my utter surprise this cake was really a winner as Tea time cake. I took half of all the portions from initial recipe and prepared the cake in loaf tin . Both of us finished the cake in no time . Deifinitely need a try.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Sometimes when i get bored of eating plain rice and daal. A quick fix pulav or masale bhat is on my list to do. This is not a authentic recipe for Masale bhat but as per my convenience and taste .


Ambe Mohar rice/ Basmati rice :- 1 cup

Tendli :- 10-12 (each cut into 4)

Brinjal :- 1 finely cut

Onion :- 3 big size (2 finely chopped and 1 finely cut)

Green Chillies :- 4-5 chopped

Goda Masala :- 2 tablespoon (I used Bedekar Goda Masala)

Salt :- As per taste

Cashews :- Optional

Black pepper :- 6-7

Cloves :- 4-5

Cinnamon :- 1 small stick

Bay leaf :- 1 2


  • Wash and drain the rice and keep it aside for 1 hr.
  • Chop the 2 onion and chillies finely.
  • Heat the sufficient oil or ghee in thick bottomed pan. Add Black pepper, cloves , cinnamon stcik and bay leave. Then add onion and chilli and suate till the onion turned transluscent.
  • Add Tendli, brinjal and cashwes and fry thourughly.
  • Then add 3/4th Goda masala and stir fry again for 1 mins.
  • Then add rice and mix it properly and add 2 cups water. Add salt as per taste and remaining goda masala .Somebody has mentioned to me that adding goda masala after adding water gives the aroma of Masala to rice. Keep it covered till done. Reduce the heat to simmer . Towards the end place it on a hot griddle till properly cooked.
  • Fry the finely cut one onion on oil till golden brown and crisp. I prefer to serve the masale bhath with fried onion (Biryani style) and coriander leaves and scrapped coconut.

Hot masale bhath is ready to serve with some hot curry.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


This year rain played a good hide and seek in Western Maharashtra. When it was raining cats and dogs in Malvan(Incidently my father happened to be in Malvan and had to cancel his plan to come to pune twice thanks to incessant rains ) , we were praying for good rain in Pune. Fortunately I stay in PCMC area where there was no water shortage but those who staying in pune suffered very badly beacuase of poor water supply. The vegetable rates just touched the sky. Amidst all these things finally rain god showed his mercy and it started raining. When its raining , for me better way to express my feelings of happiness is preparing something which will go with the mood. and what's better than garamagaram KANDA BHAJJI and hot piping CHAI. Sitting in the terrace and enjoying the rain. It's just heaven on earth. Watching the rain embracing earth with such passion. It's highly romantic. That's all rainy season is all about. Those who are from Pune can definitely understand and agree that the most romantic idea in rainy season to go to Sinhgad and have Kandabhajji. Its amazing and truly romantic!!!!! But whats life without little romance in it.
Onions :- 2-3 (Can increased depeding upon the quantity required)
Green Chillies :- 2-3 finey chopped (If you want a spicy kick can increase 2 more)
Bengal Gram Flour:- As per required quanity
Ajwain :- 1/2 teaspoon
Coriander ;- a bunch
Turmeric Powder :- 1/2 teaspoon
Salt :- As per taste
Oil :- To fry and little for batter
  • Chop the onion . Chop the green chillies finely and coriander. Add salt, turmeric powder and Ajwain to it. Let it stand for sometime.
  • Due to addition of salt to onion , onion leaves enough water. To this only add bengal gram floor .Do not add extra water and 2 teaspoon hot oil. It gives a crunch. Some people prefer to add pinch of soda bi carb to it. But i avoid the same.
  • Now heat the oil well and put the small dumplings of batter in oil and fry till golden brown and enough crunchy.
  • Place on abosorbent paper to drain the excess oil. Serve hot with tomato sauce and piping hot tea.

Enjoy the monsoon with KANDA BHAJJI .......

Monday, June 22, 2009


"Chicken curry" and "Vade" is a special Malavani dish. Mostly "Vade" is a accompaniment for Chicken gravies . Every year on 7th June , if it is a day when we eat nonvegetarian food , the chicken gravies (Rassa and Sukka Chicken) are prepared to celebrate the "MIRAG". "MIRAG" is the starting of the Monsoon. It's a heaven on earth to eat the piping hot Chicken gravy and garamagaram TANDALACHE VADE. Simply mindblowing!!!!!
I ll post the Chicken Rassa recipe some other time. But here , is the recipe for Tandlache wade which is also called Kombdi Wade.
Wash & soak the Ukada rice in water for 2-3 hrs. Then dry the rice in sun . Grind it.
  • Mix the rice flour and wheat flour in 3:1 proportion.
  • Add salt to eat as per taste.
  • Knead it with sufficient water and oil and cover it with dampen cloth and leave it for 1 hr.
  • Knead it again and divide the dough into equal sized balls.
  • Apply little water to your palm and press the dough with ur right palm on the kitchen surface.
  • Deep fry in hot oil.
  • Garamagaram Vade are ready to savour with Chicken curry.

These Vades can also be used as accompaniment for "Kalya Watanyachi Usal"(Black Peas Curry)

Coffee Butter Cake - Sinful Indulgence in butter, Chocolate and Coffee

Since the time I have started baking , my husband is one helluva enthusiast to try different types of cake. According to him , by doing so , he is actually perfecting my skills at baking. Such a supportive husband !!! . But mostly he prefers cake without any kind of icing on them . Mostly I bake cake on Sunday evening for tea/coffee time. On sunday , i was wondering which cake to prepare. I browsed through most of the baking sites including my fvaourite , Joy of Baking , Passionate About Baking and Madhuram's Eggless Cooking . Since my MIL and BIL are vegetarian , there is a major task to strike a balance between veg and non-veg food. But after going through many recipes and inspecting the pantry for the ingredients I settled on Deeba's Coffee Butter Cake . I prepared the same in a loaf tin with half the ingredients in the main recipe by Deeba. It was just a perfect cake, perfectly baked, moist and tasty. I poured the left over chocolate ganache which was waiting to be used . This is actually a sinful indulgence only when it comes to amount of chocolate and butter in cake... But once in a while its okay. Just Chill and enjoy the cake.

Friday, June 19, 2009


"Aamras & Puri " . Such a beautiful combination and a very quick sweet dish or dessert. I am a kinda person who enjoys eating mangoes with both the hands with mango squeez running along the hands. It has its own magical ,mysticals( whatever u call sort)taste. This can be attributed to my upbringing in Malvan , where as a kid we had all the liberty to pick the mangoes from the trees and eat it like that without even caring to wash it. Some may find it really awful but i have sincere suggestion for those to shed all the inhibitions of the sophisticated social world and live only one day out the reach of the fast city life . You ll enjoy and your souls will be refreshed. Thats the reason a summer holiday in Malvan is must for me & my husband just to refresh our senses.
This year the mango crop was not so good attributed to untimely rain.One can say it was a recession in Mango field also. But still we (my husband specifically)enjoyed the season thanks to my father. He made sure that we are no where affected by the recession in Mango field.
He is perfect at preparing the AAMRAS. The bowl full of Aamras which u are seeing in picture is prepared by him.He not only gets the mangoes for me and my brother but also takes a stock of them in every 1-2 days(.Since sometimes becuase of heat the mangoes get rotten inside the box .) That's major advantage for me staying nearer to my brother's place. Usually the AAMRAS is prepared by sqeezing the mangoes with hand and combing it with sugar as per your taste.But my father's recipe is as follows :
Mangoes :- 2-3 fully riped
Sugar :- As per taste
Milk :- 2 tablespoon
Cashews :- 3-4
Cardamom :- for flavour
  • Peel off the riped mangoes and squeez it in grinder.
  • Add sugar, milk , cardamom powder and cashews.
  • Grind it till smooth.
  • Chill well .

Aamras is actually served with PURI'S in Maharashtra. But we prefer to have it as a dessert.

Full mango flavour is on.....

Monday, June 15, 2009


When I was growing up in Malvan , i was fascinated by the world outside the Malvan. Literally envy my cousins who were staying in Mumbai. But when I stepped into Mumbai for my higher education , I was missing Malvan very badly. Maybe since my entire family was in Malvan. I used to wait for my holidays to go back home. I used to hang out with my friends at Juhu beach , Nariman Point , but used be restless in mind. I remember as a kid , whenever my cousins used to come to Malvan for their Summer vacations , we used to have such fun. Ours was a joint family. Today we all remember those days and miss those days very badly. I dont remember we ever slept in afternoon , even after a heavy meal. We used to hang out in our backyard , full of Coconut and Cashew trees. Used to play hide and seek. Once while hiding behind a coconut tree , i had accidently slipped in cow dung , everyone had a good laugh. Everyone still remember that. When I was kid , Malvan used to a sleepy town. In afternoons , u can actully find complete silence on the roads. Those days i never liked that.Nowadays whenever I go to Malvan , I miss that silence. Malvan is now buzzed with tourists and that is all the time. Roads are no more empty. Beaches , Markets are always full.
I had studied Change Management in my management syllabus. We did presentations on how we have to be adaptive to change. But I am not able to gulp this change. Modernisation is everywhere. How my little town will be left behind. I remember my grandfather never liked the pressure cooked rice , mixer grinded gravies. We had this hand grinder at my house. My Kaki ( aunty) used to grind masala for gravies . It was a bit time consuming , but I must say taste used be really good.
My husband is already in love with Malvan, its beauty , its food and its simple life style. He has so many future plans to settle there down on one fine day. Touchwood!!! Every year we visit Malvan in Ganesh Chaturthi and Summer Vacations. This year I can not go since my little son was not well and was not actually able to cope up with the rising mercury levels. This is his second summer only. But my brother had gone and this time he visited some places which we had never been there. We are planning to go there in next summer. Lets see what Amu(my son) has plans for himself.
Those who have not been there , plz visit once. You ll be totally in love with my little town.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


Many eyebrows might have raised after reading the name of the cake . But it is the same cake as zebra Cake which was a great hit in my house . My nephew , Pratham is a great fan of Spiderman. There are spiderman all over the house .( even he has a small spiderman with a Indian sword. )Other favourite of him is a TIGER. Sometimes he dons the avatar of a Tiger and wander roaring around the house. My father is a victim of this TIGER . He keeps pouncing on him , scratch him like a tiger and try to scare him with a tagline "Ata me tula khanar."(Now i ll eat you) . So i decided to prepare this cake keeping him in mind.This recipe is the same as of zebra cake. As in case of Zebra Cake, i divided the batter in 2 equal portions. To one part I added the Cocoa powder and to other one I added yellow food colour.Pour the batter in tin in the same manner and this tigerish looking cake was born. Pratham was delighted to see it and eat it. Nowadays he is bit puzzled about my baking fever. Whenever I take a cake for him , he has a straight question "What happened to you ? Why do you always bake a cake? "


When I first had a look at this beautiful cake at Passionate About Baking by Deeba , I was smitten by the same and decided to try the same. I followed the recipe as mentioned on her blog. And everyone was surprised to see the results. I melted some chocolate with cream and poured it over the hot cake.
The taste was amazing. It was moist and beautiful looking. Looking at it , everyone was amazed at the zebra stripes.I am actually taking baby steps in the field of baking cakes.But, indeed , in this cake , I was a clear winner. All thanks to Deeba!!!! She has explained the procedure in such details with photographs , no one can ever go wrong. I could not click the photographs at that time.My nephew , Pratham was very excited about the zebra stripes. Again I prepared this cake in loaf tin to gift it somebody. I used half the quanities for this cake. May be since it was a loaf tin , i did not get the zebra stripes , but it was more like a Marble design. Anyways the taste was good and to whom we were sending the same were amazed at the designs. This cake is actually a good treat for kids . Definitely deserve a try.


Chocolate Coffee Cake - Ultimate Combination

I wanted to gift something special to my hubby darling on his birthday. And what is better than a cake prepared by myself. I was toying with lot of ideas . Was planning month before his bday on May 31st . Finally decided on the chocolate cake. After a lot of googling , i stayed on at Deeba's Passionate About Baking .I just admire her for her creation. She has such beautiful hand and vision when it comes to decorating the cakes and taking the photographs and arranging them in such a way that u just want to try that. This cake is actually a combination of 2 cakes from her collections...Chocolate Mocha Gateau and Espresso Cake. The sponge was inspired by her Coffee sponge of Coffee Mocha Gateau .It was spongy and had the good coffee flavour. I baked it a on saturday and refrigerated the sponge overnight. The Coffee Cream was inspired by her Espresso Cake filling. And the result was amazing. I used Chocolate ganache for frosting.Recipe for Ganache is Here .Further decorated with grated chocolate and chocolate curls and shavings. It was completely chocolicious. Tasted amazing.Perfect blend of coffe and Chocolate. Birthday boy liked it very much.
But those with not so affectionate towards the chocolate and coffee , this cake may be too srong to gulp down. We enjoyed since we both like the chocolate and coffee. I used the nescafe .I dont remember the name but it's mixture of coffee and chicory and has that very strong aroma.

PIZZA - Tryst with yeast and Baked Pepper & Potato Fuseli Pasta

On Hubby's birthday , he wanted to have everything special right from breakfast .Sometimes he is very demanding. I toyed with several ideas what to do for him. He actually not person to go for English Junk food. He is very desi at heart when it comes to having Junk food like Samosas , Vada Pav , Bhajji's etc. But still i decided to take a chance and decided to prepare a Pizza and Pasta all by me. This was actually a great risk. Since in past I had never been lucky with Mr. Yeast who always enjoyed to give me nightmares. But i have said earlier , failures inspires me to try. I did the same. I followed Shilpa's Pizza base recipe. I kept the dough overnight . I had become such a yestophobic that i was getting up every 2 hrs to check up the dough. And to my utter surprise , the dough had started raising right one & half hrs. I had to replace the dough in bigger box. I was so happy to myself. It is said , If there is a will , there is a way. Morning I just rolled the dough and the pizza base was ready.
  • Red & Yellow & Green Bell Paper
  • Cheddar Chese
  • Corn nibblets
  • Baby Corns
  • Pizza Sauce
  • Mozarella Chese

I prepared 2 Pizzas following Shilpa's directions. I used the store brought pizza sauce. Applied the sauce in Pizza base followed by grated cheddar chese , peppers , corns and baby corns. Spread some diced mozarella and fresh chopped basil leaves over the topping. I prepared one with Pizza sauce and one without it. Hubby liked the one without sauce the most. One thing is for sure that my husband will not be entering the Pizza Hut or Domino's or any other Pizza Parlour anymore. He was happy and that made my day.

I decided to have the accompaniment to Pizza and decided to prepare baked pasta. During our training sessions , we had planned for this executive lunches which comprised of Baked pasta with vegetables, noodles , sandwiches , salads etc. That was the first time, I had tasted the Baked pasta and liked that taste. That taste was always at the back of mind. So I set on mission to prepare the pasta.Just started the work on intuition. Since i did not have time to surf the net at the moment , started recollecting the things seen on blogs , sites , books etc.


  • Boiled the potatoes with salt and cut it in round. Boiled the fuseli as per the instruction on the packet.
  • Buttered the oven proof dish and arranged the potatoes,Grated some cheese over them
  • Spread a layer of remaining diced peppers from Pizza and corn nibblets and baby corn.Spread the cheese slices. Spread the boiled Fuseli over it. Spread the Pasta sauce over it. Grated some cheese over it.
  • Spread the dices of Mozarella cheese and baked at pre heated oven at 180 C for 20 mins.

The hot and savoury Baked Pasta is ready to be devoured. Hubby liked the same. But he was more in praise for Pizza. May be next time i ll try the same with more vegetable and homemade Indianised sauce to give it a real desi and rustic taste.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Eggless Black Forest Cake - Getting bolder with baking

It was my nephew , Aaditya's birthday who was visiting us from Malvan in his summer vacation . When he got to know that I had prepared Amogh's birthday cake , he was quite excited about his birthday cake which was obviously I had to prepare. I remember when we were kid , my mother used to prepare cake in pressure cooker. We used to be amazed about the same. And without caring much about the sponginess, cream on it , we used to finish it. My brother was and still is great fan of cakes. Papa used to get small cup cakes from local bakery . We used to call them "Waati cakes", may be they resemble like small stainless steel bowl which is called "waati" in marathi.
So I was thinking which cake to prepare and finally decided on Black Forest. It was quite a challenge since I had to prepare an eggless cake again. I do prepapre eggless cake but my personal favourite is cake with egg in it. Anyways , The chocolate sponge recipe is Here . I prepared the 2 sponge , one round in 9" spring form tin and one small hexagonal.(In this case i just reduced the ingredients to half).
500 ml Heavy whipping cream
1 tsp Vanilla extract
5 tsp Confectioners sugar (You can check for sweetness)
Mix all the ingredients till soft peaks are form.
Actually I had read somewhere that the cherry syrup is used in Black Forest Cake. The same was not available at my place . In such case whats better than googling your way out.I did the same and found alternative in sugar syrup @ Shilpa's aayi's recipe.
I used bottled cherries and dark grated chocolate for decorations.
  • Refrigerate the sponge at least for 2-3 hrs . It will help cutting the sponge. I have cut both the sponges in 2 layers each.
  • Put upper part of cake on plate and spread the sugar syrup on it followed by cream.Spred few chopped cherries. Place the other layer on it and repeat the procedure for all layers.
  • Press the cake slightly and spread the cream on top and frost the sides as well.
  • Decorate with cherries and chocolate shavings.
  • Refrigerate the same to mature the flaours.Keep the cake outside of the fridge an hour before cutting.

Your Eggless black forest cake is ready to be devoured . The cake was bit dense this time but tasted good. May be because we cut it right out of fridge.

One funny incident had happened , Pratham ,my other 5 yrs old nephew who is also a fan of chocolate and cream cake was fascinated by the cream and cherries on top. He was getting impatient to cut the same and since we were getting little late to cut the cake , he was bit irritated too. He was closely guarding the cake. At one point of time , he got so tempted that he actually licked the cream on top. Me and my SIL were literally aghast for a moment . Since all the cream was finished , we had none to put at the patch. The poor little champ was looking at us with fear in his eyes. But we just the scrapped a little little cream from sides and pasted it at the patch and no one was aware untill we told everyone after cake cutting. That's the innocence !!! We have to appreciate it ..

Chocolate Strawberry Cake - Amu's Birthday present & Its Eggless

After going through so many food blogs and especially, blogs dedicated to baking , I was truly inspired to dive in to the sea of baked items. To start with I had to purchase an OTG or a microwave. And my struggle to find the right option started thereon. The journey was a complete mixture of online research , literally interviewing the people who already had both musts in bakers world. The final verdict was not surprising but expected..... 50- 50..... In such cases , you just have to trust your conscience... I did the same and purchased an OTG. I am really happy that I made this choice. Results are amazing.. even though my first eggless chocholate cake was a total disaster in taste...but it rose very well and had that good crumb, moist and spongy. It had everything but the TASTE..... But it is said and proved "Failure is the first step towards success " . I literally believed in the same and dared to prepare my sons' First Birthday Cake... Risk factor was very high.. But that's my gift to my son.. He is too small to understand the same.. But one day he ll realise that... The cake was really good in taste . Eventhough it was eggless, it was spongy. I frosted it with chocolate ganache. Design and the flaovur were inspired by Deeba's Strawberry and Chocolate Cake at Passionate About Baking . We all enjoyed the cake and the dinner which was followed after cake cutting.
I wanted to try Madhuram’s Eggless Chocolate Cake Recipes recipe which had silken tofu. But i could not found the silken tofu here in pune. After a bit on googling, I zeroed in on one with condensed milk.
Here is the recipe :
Condensed Milk :- 200gm (I used half tin of Milkmaid)
2 Cups :- All purpose flour ( + 3 tsp)
1 tablespoon :- Baking Powder
1/2 tablespoon :- Soda Bi Carb
2 tablespoon :- Castor Sugar
Melted butter :- 60 gm
1/2 tablespoon Strawberry essence
Milk :- 100 ml
Soda :- 100 ml
  1. Pre - heat the oven at 200 C.
  2. Sift all dry ingredients.
  3. Pour condensed milk in mixing bowl and add melted butter and essence to it. Beat well till smooth. Add half milk and mix well.
  4. Add flour 1 spoon at a time and beat well. Add milk as required.Check for consistency. ( Beat the batter in once direction only to incorporate the more air.) Beat the batter for 5 mins.
  5. Add soda and mix gently. Plz ensure that the air shall not escape. This will make the cake lighter and spongy.
  6. Pour into a prepared 8" spring form tin. Bake for 30 mins or the skewer inserted in the center Bake at 200 C for first 10 mins and reduce the temp to 170C till done.
  7. Cool a little and invert on a wire rack.


The recipe is same as for strawberry sponge. Only u have to replace the 3 tsp Flour with Cocoa powder and use Coke/ Pepsi/ Thums up instead of Soda.

I made the sponge one day prior , wrapped in plastic zip lock bag and refrigerated for one day.This helps in cutting the sponge in 2 layers. Divided both the sponge in 2 layers each.

Dark Chocolate :- 150 gm

Cream :- 100 - 150 ml. (It has to be of spreading consistency)

Melt the chocolate and cream in double boiler to avoid burning of chocolate. Take it off heat and mix it vigorously . Mixing will add shine to the ganache.


Cream :- 250 ml

Fresh Strawberries :- 250 gm (Chopped finely. Keep aside 5-6 strawberries for decoration)

Whipp the cream till it become stiff. Reserve the little cream for web decoration on top.Mix the finley chopped strawberries in cream


I followed the directions of Deeba while frosting it. Detailed picrures on her blog helped me to design the web on cake which was actually a centre of attention for everyone present.

I had read at Joy of Baking that once the cake are cut in 2 layers , while creaming it had to be put upside down. But this tip I read only after decorating my son's birthday cake. Hence u can see the dome shape in picture. That actually gave me tough time in spreading the ganache on top. My ganache was little watery that was also a one of the reason , it was running down the edges. But it was my first attempt and I was satisfied with the result. Now I feel a bit confident about baking cakes.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Lord Ganesha's Favourite - MODAK

Lord Ganesh is my favourite god. Whenever I look at HIM , I feel that all my tensions are relieved. I can never imagine that HE can ever be angry on anyone. HE is so cute, adorable and still has that command over you . My bonding with HIM goes back to my growing up days. Since I belong to Konkan region , we are grown up worshipping him during the Ganesh Chaturthi . As a kid , we used to gear up for Festival like anything. At my place , we keep Ganesh idol at home for 11 days. During all these days , the fun quotient used to be very high & still it is . The preparation would start 1 month prior to the festival. The house is used to be cleaned and painted every year before festival. We, kids used to enjoy every bit of it . It may be a ordeal for our elders to clean such big houses.

I still remember and miss those days. We used to get up early in the morning and get ready to go along with papa to bring the idol at home. In konkan , the idols are made of clay and not of plastar of paris and are very heavy , require at least 6-7 people to lift them. Ours is a joint family . My granny, mother and all aunties used to start their food preparations since morning . There is used to be a great spread of at least 5 vegetables, gravies , dal , snacks and the highlight of the menu…. MODAK!!! The favourites of Lord Ganesha....

We prepare Modaks of rice flour and they are steamed. I prepare Modak every month on the day of "Sankashti Chaturthi".
Ingredients :-
Rice Flour :- 1 Cup
Coconut :- 1 Cup
Jaggery :- 1/2 Cup ( add as required)
Ghee :- 2 tsp
Cardamom powder to flavour
Cashews,raisin :- Optional
Recipe :-

  1. Boil 1 and 1/2 cup of water in a heavy bottomed pan. Add salt and ghee to it.

  2. Add rice flour to it and cook it covered on low flame for 4-5 mins. (UKAD is ready)

  3. Add jaggery to wok and cook till it melts. Add scraped coconut and cardamom to it. Mix it thourughly.

  4. Add cashews and raisins (Optional. I like the cruch while eating it). Your SARAN is ready

  5. Take the cooked rice flour in dish and knead it properly. Divide the dough into small balls.(Generally I make 21 modaks for naivedya)

  6. Roll each ball to size of small puri.Place it on your Palm(apply oil generoulsy to your palm to avoid sticking of the dough) Fill it with saran.

  7. Bring together the ends in form of plates and form a tip and seal the same. Repeat the procedure for rest of dough balls.(Cover all the modaks with wet cloth to avoid drying resulting in cracking)

  8. Oil a colander and arrange all the modaks in it. Boil water in a big pot and keep the colander covered with dish on it and steam it 10- 15 mins. ( Those who have a steamer can steam the modaks in it.)

The NAIVEDYA is ready to be offered to Lord Ganesh.

During rainy season , the HALDI leaves are available. The modaks are to covered with these leaves and steamed. It gives them such exotic aroma. Mind blowing.......... Generally we stored the dried leaves also and put them in while steaming.. it also helps

Monday, May 11, 2009

Fish Fry- Its Rawa fry !!!!

A fish fry is must on plate . A fish taste best when it is fried. I personally prefer a curried fish. But my hubby likes a fried fish most. It is just like a side dish. Once I had called my office colleagues at my place for lunch.. a fishy lunch. I had prepared curry in the morning but decided to fry the fish just few mins before serving the meal. The GARAMAGARAM fried fish is always at its best when just out of TAVA ( griddle ). When i started frying the fish , the aroma just filled in my entire house.. giving quite a good competition to my colleagues patience. Biding adieu to all the so called tabel manners , they had to tell me to serve the food. Moral of the story is that a fish can be so much commanding to you. So beware !!! once you are trapped in this fishy affair , you will have to bear the consequences life long.. but it is worth it..
Ingredient :-
Fish :- 4-5 pieces (King fish/Pompfret/Backerel)
Flour( Rice/Wheat) :- 5 tsp
Rava ( Semolina) :- 2 tsp
Red chilli powder :- 1 tsp ( depending on the spicy tastebud)
Salt :- for marination
Kokum extract :- 1 tsp
Recipe :-
  1. Clean the fish and marinate with salt for half an hour.
  2. Mix the flour , red chilli powder and rava.
  3. Clean the fish again and pour the kokum extract and mix.
  4. Heat the oil in Pan for shallow frying.
  5. Covered the fish with the mixture from all sides and put in pan. Fry the fish on low flame from all sides.

And Indulged yourself with it ......

Kokum extract is called "Aagul". I get a bottle of it from Malvan every now and then. Otherwise you can make a extract by mixing 7-8 kokums in half cup of water. The same is also used for preparing SOLKADHI.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Malvani Fish Curry

If you ask any of your Malvani friends - What is your staple food. The pat reply will be "mashyachi amati , bhaat ani Bhajlelo maso" . It means Fish curry, Rice and any fried fish. My hubby dear was almost a strict vegetarian before marriage ( Fish had no entry in his pantry ) . His romance with non-vegetarian food was restricted to Chicken. Poor thing me!! Before thinking about the same , I was already badly and madly in love with him, even thought of sacrificing my love for FISH. (All the fish in the sea might have rejoiced that particular day . ) But a little birdie whispered in my ear… “Just try your luck.. it might just work..” . A bit of culinary expertise in fish dishes to my credit , I just thought to give it a try. I just convinced him to have a bite at fish. He was quite skeptical . After a little bit of tu tu main main and emotional blackmailing…(We are just blessed with skill) , he was at it. First he tried only curry portion … and he liked it..( My first step towards the success). For days , he was trying only curry and somehow one fine day I got him into tasting Fish piece and he totally approved it. And that was the birth of a fishetarian !!!!!!
Today More than me , my hubby dear enjoys the fish. He knows them by their name. There are Fish , crabs, Shrimps, Prawns , Clams and what not…. Whole lot of sea varities to explore. My mother is a exceptional cook specifically sea food. My husband just relish her cooking . I just wish I ever could prepare fish like her… Her Fish curry is just the prefect… A perfect taste , A perfect Color …It just a Perfect fishy affair….
Ingredients :-
½ Kg Fish ( Pomfret, King Fish )
12-15 Whole Red Chilllies
1 Tsp Coriander Seeds
1 Cup Grated Coconut
1 Onion
½ Tsp Turmeric Powder
6-7 Kokum
Salt to taste

Recipe :-
First Clean and cut the fish into desired shape.

Marinate the pieces with salt for ½ an hour.
Soak the red chillies and coriander seeds for ½ an hour in water.
Grind the same with little water at the beginning. Add water as required .Grind to smooth paste. Add coconut ,turmeric powder and half onion into and grind further . Add water as required and grind to smooth paste.
Heat oil in a wok and add finely chopped half oinon. Saute till translucent. Add the grind masala . Add water as required . Add kokum and salt . Let it simmer in low flame.
Then add the fish pieces. Check for salt. If you want more tangy taste , add 3-4 more kokum. Let it simmer on low flame. Check for fish . Once the Fish is cooked properly , your Malvani Fish Curry is ready to devoured .

Fish Curry taste best when it is spicy and tangy . But those who are with not so spicey tastebuds can reduce the amount of chillies in gravy.I use Byadgi Mirchi. It gives the perfect colour and spicy kick....



After so much of thinking and re-thinking, I am on the bloggerworld. No one would believe, but even I was planning to find a good muhurat before stepping into this wonderful world of explorations. Today, just sitting quite in my living room , thought just crossed my mind and here I am already registered as blogger and typing my Opening Speech . Friends , I don’t know , how far I would go ! I just don’t want to think about about it . What I know is that at this moment, there are butterflies in my stomach…. (literally eating my intestines) . Just need a good support from my fellow bloggers and the guidance from time to time.

I am a true Malvani ( read as Fishetarian), presently residing in Pune. I am foodie by heart and love to experiment with food when has ample time in hand . Being a full time HR professional , has a very little time in hand to experiment. But the food creations on internet has just bowled me over and inspired me to jump into this sea . I may not be writing daily but definitely , will be trying to update every now and then. I have always enjoyed preparing non – vegetarian dishes but recently, I am bugged by new bug called BAKING after visiting few truly baker blogs. In fact once settled in this new found passion, I think I would definitely like to join Daring Kitchens. Presently, I am bustling with the enthusiasm to
blog, blog and blog…..

One more secret is trying to get out of pocket is that no one is aware till now is that I have my own space on internet… shhhhhhhhhhhh… not even my darling hubby….