Hi Friends, Hope you have a lovely time going through my recipes. The recipes I post here are tested in my kitchen and only the successful recipes get featured in this blog. If you are trying any of my recipe, please stick to the measurements provided and follow the instructions to get the same result. Any deviation from the original recipe will result in a different output and I will not be responsible for the failure. And please don't use abusive words in comments. As I moderate them, they will never be published in this page. And all the photographs and contents are my property and if you want to use it in any of your websites, please make sure to give proper credit and take my permission before publishing. Thank you!!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Baklava with Home Made Phyllo Sheets

Erica of Erica's Edibles challenged the Daring Bakers to prepare Phyllo Sheets from scratch and prepare the famous Baklava. I have always wanted to prepare baklava, but as we don't get phyllo sheets here, I skipped it. But when I came to know that phyllo sheets can be made at home, I was the happiest person on earth. Preparing the sheets was really a challenging job. I got severe back pain after doing it, but after seeing the end result, I just forgot the pain. The baklava was so tasty and the phyllo sheets were so flaky. 
I am very sorry for the length of the post and number of picture. Please bear with me, if I test your patience. But to give you a clear picture it is really important..




We tasted 2 pieces each and I packed everything for my hubby's colleagues. It has so much butter, nuts and sugar, I was afraid of eating more than two pieces. My H told that they were all gone in a minute. Appreciation is what we need at times to be happy. Okay, let us get on to the recipe..


  
 Phyllo Sheets:
For rolling the phyllo sheets we need a sleek, long rolling pin. But I have only the usual pin used for rotis. While I was thinking of a perfect rolling pin, I got this idea. My daughter has a tent in which she plays. This can be constructed with some rods. There are rods with varying lengths. I used one such rod for rolling. My daughter was afraid that mommy will not retun her tent rod. So as soon as I finished with rolling, she took it away from me to save it. At least she allowed me to use it.




Ingredients:
APF/ Maida-1 1/3cups
Salt-1/8tsp
Water-1/2cup-1tbs
Vegetable Oil-2tbs
White Vinegar-1/2tbs


Procedure:
1. Mix all the ingredients and prepare a soft dough.
2. Apply oil on dough and place it in a bowl. Cover with cling wrap and set it aside for 2 hours.
3. Knead the dough for 5 minutes. Divide it into equal portions. I made 20 balls out of the dough.
4. Dust the counter with flour. With a sleek roller roll out the dough into a small circle. 
5. This process need lot of flour for dusting to avoid sticking of the circle.
6. Roll the circle on the rolling pin as shown in the photo.
7. With both palms, apply pressure on the pin and roll it.
8. Now unwrap the circle from the pin. The circle will be little thinner and little larger. 
9. Again roll the circle on the pin and roll the pin applying pressure on the pin. Unwrap the circle.
10. Repeat this process until you get a very thin sheet without tearing the sheet.
11. Place it on a butter paper and cover with another paper to avoid drying of the sheet. As the sheet is very thin it tends to dry faster and will become brittle.
12. When placed on a news paper, the prints should be seen. The sheets must be very thin.
13. You can also prepare these sheets and roll it on a parchment paper and cover with cling wrap and freeze it till further use.


Prepare dough


Divide into small pieces.


Roll each ball into a circle


Roll the circle on the rolling pin
Use both palms and apply pressure on the circle while rolling the pin


Roll it as thin as possible


The prints should be seen through the sheets


Syrup:
Ingredients:
Honey-1 1/4cup
Brown Sugar-1 1/4cup
Water-1 1/4cup
Cinnamon-1stick
Clove-3


Procedure:
1. Take all the ingredients in a sauce pan.
2. Mix it well and bring it to boil.
3. Switch flame to low and allow it to boil for 10minutes.
4. Strain the syrup in a metal strainer and allow it to cool.


Take all the ingredients in a sauce pan


Boil it on low flame for 10minutes and strain it 


Filling:
Ingredients:
Almonds-3/4cup
Pistachios-1/2cup
Peanuts-3/4cup
Walnut-1/2cup
Brown Sugar-2/3cup
Cardamom Powder-1tbs


Procedure:
1. Add hot water to almonds and set it aside for 20minutes. Remove skin.
2. Roast peanuts on medium flame till golden brown.
3. Remove skin after cool.
4. Roast walnuts till golden brown. Let it cool.
5. In a mixer grinder grind all the nuts to a coarse powder.
6. Add brown sugar and cardamom powder and mix well.


Mix all the roasted, powdered nuts with sugar and cardamom powder


Preparing Baklava:
Ingredients:
Phyllo Sheets-20
Filling 
Syrup
Clarified Butter/ Ghee-1/2cup


Procedure:
1. Cut all the sheets to the baking dish's size. I used a square cake tin which is 6"*6".
2. Apply ghee on all the sides of the tin.
3. Place a sheet inside the tin and apply a coat of ghee.
4. Keep another sheet on it. Apply a coat of ghee.
5. Use 5 sheets to layer finishing with the ghee layer.
6. Add 8tbs of the filling (the filling layer should be 0.5cm high)on top of the sheet.
7. Repeat another 5 layers of the phyllo sheets with ghee in between the sheets.
8. Totally there should be four phyllo sheet layer and three filling layers in between.
9. After finishing with the layering, apply generous amount of ghee on the top.
10. With a knife, cut out desired shapes. This need not be fully cut now.
11. Preheat oven to 180C.
12. Bake the baklava for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and cut it till the bottom.
13. Bake for another 15minutes or until the top is golden brown.
14. Remove from oven and immediately pour the cool syrup on the hot baklava.
15. You will hear a sizzling sound when the syrup meets the baklava.
16. Add syrup inbetween the cuts. The baklava will absorb the syrup immediately.
17. The amount of syrup depends on personal preferences. If you want a flaky baklava, add little syrup. If you want a juicy and sweet baklava, then add the syrup untill the baklava is fully immersed in syrup.
18. Allow it to cool overnight.
19. All the syrup will be absorbed by the inner layers by this time.
20. Now slice it and serve.
21. I had the pieces of phyllo sheets remaining after the trimming process. I also had extra filling and syrup.
22. So I prepared another baklava in a small circular cake tin. I just patched the pieces to make layers.
23. The final product was very nice and you couldn't distinguish between the two. So I avoided wasting those cut out pieces of the phyllo sheets.


Cut the sheets to the size of the baking dish


20 sheets ready


Apply ghee and place a sheet on it. Make 5 layers of phyllo sheet and ghee


Add a layer of the filling


Repeat layering


Finished layering


Cut to desired shape and apply generous amount of ghee




These are the pieces left out after trimming the sheets


Patch it to form a layer


This is the baklava prepared by patching


Bake till golden brown


Pour syrup


Syrup poured until the top layer is immersed


Patch worked baklava. You couldn't see the difference


Serve it after 12 hours

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Poosanikkai Inippu Somas / Sweet Samosa with Pumpkin Filling

I love to experiment with sweets. If you read my blog, you will know that I have a huge collection of sweets compared to other dishes. Sweet samosa has been in my to do list for long. Had lot of pumpkin sitting in my fridge. So I thought of combining both to create this cuties. These are mini samosas. They look so cute and tastes delicious. The filling has pumpkin and pumpkin seeds mixed with ghee and cashew to give the perfect crunc. The samosa are dipped in sugar syrup and allowed to dry beefroe serving. Kid's will surely fall for it. Usually kids like anything which are small in size. So this will surely be a winner among kids. My daughter liked it very much.




Ingredients:
For The Dough:
Maida-1/2cup
Ghee-2tsp
Baking Powder-a pinch
For The Filling:
Grated Pumpkin-1cup
Sugar-4tsp
Ghee-2tbs
Cashew-2tbs
Pumpkin Seeds-1/8cup
Cardamom Powder-1/4tsp
For The Syrup:
Sugar-3/4cup
Water-1/2cup

Procedure:
1. Mix sugar and water and bring it to boil.
2. Boil the syrup until it reaches 1/2string consistency. (When taken between thumb and fore finger the syrup forms a thread and is cut midway when pulling the fingers apart. This is 1/2thread consistency)
3. Keep it aside.
4. Heat ghee for filling. Fry cashew till golden.
5. Add the grated pumpkin and cardamom powder. Saute till it changes colour and a nice aroma emanates.
6. Add sugar and mix well. When sugar melts and mixes well with pumpkin remove it from flame.
7. Dry roast pumpkin seeds until it pops. Add this to the pumpkin mixture. Mix well.
8. Mix all the ingredients for the dough. Add water little by little and prepare a firm dough. Knead it for 5 minutes. Apply a coat of ghee on the dough and let it rest for 5 minutes.
9. Divide the dough into 32 small portions. Roll each portion into a ball.
10. Keep it covered.
11. Roll each ball into a thin circle. Apply water along the circumference.
12. Keep little filling in the middle.
13. Bring half circle above the filling and press it to close. Close it neatly so that it does not come apart while frying.
14. Finish with all the balls. The filling will be enough for the dough balls.
15. While preparing the samosas, keep the prepared samosas covered with a cloth to avoid drying.
16. Heat oil. It should be medium hot. Fry all the samosas till golden brown.
17. Keep it in a plate until you fry all the samosas.
18. Add all the fried samosas to the syrup and mix it gently to evenly coat all the samosas with syrup. Let it be in the syrup for 2 minutes.
19. Remove the samosas on to a plate. Pour the remaining syrup on the samosas.
20. After 5 minutes, place the samosas on another plate and allow it to dry. It may feel sticky first bur after an hour or two, the stickiness will be gone. The samosas will have a nice shine due to the syrup.
21. Serve or store in an airtight jar.

Dough Balls

Filling

Roll into a small circle

Apply water along the circumference and keep filling in the centre

Fold it to make a half moon shape

Prepared samosas

Drying after dipping in syrup

Enjoy
Sending this to
Kid's Delight- Mini Bites hosted by Champa and started by Srivalli
Let's Cook - Break Time Snacks at Tickling Palates

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Vaangi Baath / Eggplant Rice / Kathrikkai Saadam

My mom used to prepare Vaangi Baath. I never asked about the preparation. I like it very much. When I bought a brinjal from the stores, I was thinking about today's menu. Suddenly I remembered Vaangi Baath. I called my mom and asked for the recipe and prepared it for today's lunch. Though it didn't come out as tasty as my mom's, it was good. H liked it and had two servings of it. I served it along with roasted papad. The amount given for the thokku can be used to prepare vaangi baath using 1/2kg of rice. As we don't need that much rice, I prepared it with 250gm of rice and refrigerated the remaining thokku.




Ingredients:
Basmathi Rice-500gm  ( If using lesser rice, then refrigerate the remaining thokku)
Brinjal/ Eggplant-250gm (I used one brinjal which weighed 250gm)
Onion-2
Mustard and Urad Dhal-1tsp
Turmeric Powder-1/2tsp
Salt-to taste
Till Oil-1/3cup
Soya Nuggets-1/8cup (soak in hot water for 15minutes)
For the Spice Powder:
Groundnut-2tbs
Channa Dhal-2tbs
Coriander Seeds-1tsp
Mustard-1/4tsp
Methi Seeds-1/4tsp
Red Chilly-4-5
Asafoetida-1/4tsp


Procedure:
1. Using 1/2tsp oil, roast the ingredients given for the spice powder and grind it to a fine powder.
2. Heat oil and splutter mustard and urad dhal.
3. Add onion and saute till golden brown.
4. Cut brinjal into small pieces and add it to the onions.
5. Add soya nuggets, turmeric powder, salt and 1/4cup of water and cook it with the pan coverd. Keep flame at low.
6. Cook it until brinjal can be mashed.
7. With a flat ladle, mash the brinjal and cook it till the water has been evaporated.
8. Add the spice powder and stir for 1 minute.
9. Switch off stove and allow to cool.
10. Cook rice with 3cups of water. Let it cool.
11. Now mix the thokku with the rice without breaking the rice.
12. Set it aside for 1 hour for the flavour to emerge into the rice.
13. Serve it with papad.

I am sending this as an entry to 
My Mother's Kitchen- One Pot Meals by Kalyani
Food Pallette Series-Purple at Torview

Poosanikkai Paal Halwa/ Pumpkin Halwa

You will be seeing many pumpkin recipes in my blog this month. I bought a pumpkin and wanted to finish it off. This time I had to try out new recipes. This halwa was so delicious. I love the colour of pumpkin. I used two drops of lemon yellow to enhance the colour. The addition of cashew and pumpkin seeds made it slightly crunchy. Milk and pumpkin merged together to create magic. You will surely love it..



Ingredients:
Grated Pumpkin-1cup
Sugar-1/4cup
Milk-2cups
Ghee-2tbs
Cardamom Powder-1/2tsp
Broken Cashew-2tbs
Pumpkin Seeds-2tbs
Lemon Yellow Food Colour-2-3drops


Procedure:
1. Take 1cup of milk and pumpkin in a pan and cook it on low flame until milk is reduced to half the quantity.
2. Add the remaining milk, sugar and cardamom powder and cook it on low flame.
3. Cook in open pan until the mixture becomes thick.
4. Heat ghee and fry cashew and pumpkin seeds till golden.
5. Add it to the halwa and mix well.
6. When the mixture looses the water content, remove from flame and allow it to cool.
7. Refrigerate and serve. Enjoy ...


Sending this to
 CWS-Pumpkin Seeds guest hosted here and started by Priya
Serve it Chilled at Oh Taste n See

Monday, June 20, 2011

Eggless Pumpkin Cake

When a reader of my blog asked about a recipe for carrot cake, I did some experimenting to get a perfect egggless cake. Today, I had a pumpkin in my kitchen and thinking about using it in a baked dish, I got this idea. I just used grated pumpkin instead of carrot. The cake was so soft with a moist crumb and it was delicious. So wanted to share it with you all. Hope you like it..



Ingredients:
Grated Pumpkin-1 1/2cup
Maida-2cups
Butter-1/2cup
Curd-1/2cup
Milk-1 1/4cup
Baking Powder-2tsp
Baking Soda-1tsp
Sugar-3/4cup
Vanilla Essence-2tsp
Pumpkin Seeds-1/4cup


Procedure:
1. Beat butter until soft and creamy.
2. Add the granulated sugar and beat until incorporated.
3. Add curd, essence and milk and mix well.
4. Mix flour with baking powder and baking soda.
5. Add this to the butter mixture and mix it slowly until fully incorporated.
6. Add the grated pumpkin and mix it.
7. Pour in a rectangular tray which has been greased and dusted. I used a tray which measures 12"*9".
8. Spread the seeds evenly on the batter.
9. Bake in a preheated oven (180C) for 20-25minutes.
10. Cool on wire rack.
10. Slice it and serve.


Just after baking

Enjoy
Sending this to 
Celebrate Sweets-Cakes by Sonia started by Niveditha
CWS-Pumpkin Seeds guest hosted here and started by Priya
Let's Cook-Break Time Snacks at Tickling Palates


Please send in your entries for CWS-Pumpkin Seeds event

Mango Sorbet

I came across sorbet only after I entered the blogosphere. Sorbet somewhat resembles icecream, but it doesn't have milk in it. Sugar syrup is prepared and added to any fruit pulp and it is frozen. Yesterday I tried sorbet with mango and brown sugar syrup. It was so tasty and perfect for this hot climate. My daughter liked it a lot.


Ingredients:
Mango Pulp-2cups
Brown Sugar Syrup-1/2cup
For the syrup:
Honey-1/4cup
Brown Sugar-1/4cup
Water-1/4cup
Cinnamon-a pinch
Clove-1


Procedure:
1. Mix all the ingredients given for the syrup and bring to a boil.
2. Reduce flame and let it boil for 10minutes.
3. Remove from fire and allow it to cool.
4. Strain it through a wire sieve and keep it aside.
5. Peel skin of mangoes and remove seed.
6. Cut the flesh into small pieces and grind it in a blender to a smooth pulp.
7. Add 1/2cup of syrup to 2cups of pulp.
8. Blend it thoroughly.
9. Keep the mixture in a plastic box and place it in the freezer. The freezer setting shoul be at maximum.
10. After 2 hours, remove from freezer and with a hand mixture beat it until smooth.
11. Place it again inside the jar and freeze it.
12. Repeat the process after 1 hour.
13. Let it freeze for 4-5hours.
14. Scoop out the sorbet and place it in a serving bowl.
15. Enjoy..


Sending this to Serve It Chilled at Oh Taste N See and Mango Recipes at My Culinary Creations

Mango Milk Shake

This is a simple milk shake. I had so many mangoes and wanted to use it up. My daughter likes milk shakes. SO I prepared this. This can be prepared in two minutes if you have everything chill. She liked it a lot.




Ingredients:
Thick Milk-1cup
Mango Pieces-1/4cup
Sugar-2tsp
Cardamom Powder-a pinch


Procedure:
1. Chill the milk and mango pieces.
2. At the time of serving, add all the ingredients in a blender and pulse it till it becomes creamy.
3. Pour into a serving glass and serve immediately.


Sending this to Serve It Chilled at Oh Taste N See and Mango Recipes at My Culinary Creations

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Milk Mysorepak

This is little different from the usual mysorepak. It does not have the pores, but is equally tasty. I am always in doubt when preparing sweets of this type. As I have told you earlier I will call all the deities for help. Sruti loves Mysorepak. I prepared it yesterday and I had to do it perfect. Otherwise my daughter will surely be disappointed. So I set out to prepare this famous and delicious sweet. For my utter surprise, it came out perfect. When H returned from office, I gave one to taste. Wow! It is just like mysorepak! This is what he told me. The experiment succeeded. Thank God! And Sruti loved it...






Ingredients:
 Besan/ Chick pea Flour-100gm
Sugar-300gm
Ghee-300gm
Milk-2cups

Procedure:
  1. Heat milk in a heavy bottomed kadai.
  2. When it reduces to half the amount add the sugar and mix well.
  3. Let it boil for 2 minutes.
  4. Sift the besan and add this to the sugar and milk mixture.
  5. Stir it continuosly to avoid the formation of lumps.
  6. Heat ghee in a separate sauce pan.
  7. When the mixture starts boiling, add a ladle full of hot ghee to the mixture. Stir well.
  8. Do not stop stirring as this tends to stick and burn.
  9. Keep on adding ghee until the mixture starts leaving sides.
  10. At the final stage, the mixture will start bubbling with lot of holes in it.
  11. At this stage, pour it into a greased tray and press the top with back of a spoon to make it even.
  12.  Pour any remaining ghee over it.
  13.  After 10minutes, the mixture will start firming. At this stage, cut out desired shapes with a sharp knife.
  14. Allow it to cool completely. The ghee will be fully absorbed by the mysorepak.
  15. Now cut it again and store in airtight jar.
  16. Enjoy.   


Boil milk

When it is reduced to half add sugar

After 2 minutes of boiling add besan

Mix well with out lumps

Add hot ghee and stir

The sides will start bubbling

When the whole mixture starts leaving sides and start bubbling,  the final stage is reached

Pour on a greased tray and pour the remaining ghee on it

Cut into squares

When completely cool, remove the pieces from tray

Enjoy!
P.S: You can also use 150gm refined oil and 150gm of ghee instead of using 300gm of ghee.

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