Sunday, May 23, 2010

An Indian Twist to an Italian Favourite!

It was Saturday and we had done quite a bit of mindless, impulsive shopping. Husby's face was growing longer and sadder as the day went and I still hadn't taxed him with the weekly grocery shopping yet! After a snail paced episode of shopping at the local supermarket, husby darling just about had enough patience to push the cart (normally) towards our car without crashing it into some poor unsuspecting shopper in frustration. I tagged along to keep up with him while I scanned the longish receipt to see if we were charged right for everything. As we loaded the boot of our car with the many bags, I tried cheering him up by promising to make pizza for dinner. He didn't seem like he cared much. But when the pizza was made (and the kitchen smelt so good!), cut and served with some yummy garlic and cheese bread, he finally smiled, ear to ear :) 

Here's what I did - 

Make at home Pizza with Indian flavours. I can't help it! I'm Indian and I love the masalas :) 

  • store bought pizza base
  • tomato sauce/ketchup - 1 tbspn
  • toppings (use as desired) - thinly sliced onion, thinly sliced capsicum, diced paneer , thinly sliced jalapeno chillies (de-seeded to save the mouth from catching fire), grated cheese, chopped coriander
  • spices - (use as desired) paprika, chilli flakes, curry powder, salt
Method - 

  • Preheat oven to 200 deg Celsius
  • Spread tomato sauce over the pizza base and load it with toppings
  • Sprinkle on the spices 
  • Bake for about 10 mins (might vary from oven to oven)
  • Serve hot with more ketchup and chilli sauce
It was so much better than as good as the ones we usually order in, honestly.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Your Wish is My Command, Master!

On one of our grocery shopping trips, HD was scanning the shelves in the biscuits/cookies aisle while he decisively said, 'Make those melt-in-the-mouth Iyengar Bakery* cookies for me, please.' I felt oddly good as I pictured myself as the quintessential house wife in the 50s, donning a flowery apron, wooden spoon and mixing bowl in hand, dutifully baking a batch of warm cookies and beaming in satisfaction as my darling husband munched on them (wow! some imagination!) Anyways, he was lucky as I was still on a 'new oven' high. So I decided to bake some cookies and although I chose not to make them Iyengar Bakery style, he seemed pretty content with the Peanut Butter Cookies, my style :)

Here's the recipe:

100gms unsalted butter
2 tbspns peanut butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
2 cups plain flour (or as much as the mixture needs to form a dough)
1 tspn baking powder
1/2 tspn vanilla extract


Cream the butter, peanut butter and sugar in a mixing bowl.
Crack in one egg and whisk gently.
Add vanilla extract.
Sift flour and baking powder into the creamed mixture and gently work into a dough.
Cover in cling wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.
When you're ready to bake, remove cookie dough from the refrigerator and shape into balls, about an inch each.
Place on a cookie tray and lightly press down flat with a fork, making a criss-cross pattern. (They do expand a little, so allow enough space.)
Bake for about 10-12mins in  a preheated oven at 180 deg.
Cool on a wire rack and store in a cookie jar!

I must say, the smell of cookies baking in the oven, the cold winds outside, a tired husby back from work and two nice hot cups of coffee - bliss! I read somewhere that cooking is love made visible, I couldn't agree more :)

Hope you enjoy baking and eating these cookies with someone you love!

*Popular local bakeries in Bangalore.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

A Delicious Accident!

The other day, I wanted to test the oven here at our new apartment and I decided to bake a basic vanilla cake. I don't really stick to any one specific recipe for a plain cake. I just kind of go along with the flow. That's exactly how I started when I had this sweet little accident and ended up with some yummy banana bread kinda thing instead :) See, what I did was cleverly replace one egg with a banana that was crying out to be used, what with all the mushy bits and dark spots! In the end, the house smelt heavenly as the banana and vanilla in the oven did a slow waltz and wafted through the kitchen. And yeah, well, I found that the oven works, very efficiently :)

My accidental recipe for banana bread - 

1.25 cups plain flour
100gms unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 (very) ripe banana
1 tbspn milk
1tspn baking powder
a few drops of vanilla essence


  1. In a large mixing bowl, throw in the (softened) butter and sugar and whisk well until combined.
  2. Break in the egg and continue to whisk.
  3. Mash the banana and mix into the contents in the bowl.
  4. Add the vanilla essence.
  5. Sift the flour with baking powder, add in slowly to the mixture and keep whisking to form a smooth batter.
  6. Add milk to adjust consistency of the batter, which should be neither too stiff nor runny.
  7. Pour into a greased and floured baking tin and chuck it into a preheated oven.
  8. Bake at 180 deg for about 20mins or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted in the middle of the cake.
  9. Serve warm with a dollop of love :) 
Husby was as thrilled as I was! He kept saying that I should bake this often, which I really think I will. Maybe I'll try using wholemeal flour the next time. Or buy some bananas and wait until they look pathetic, again!


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