Daring Bakers: Caramel Cake with Caramelized Butter Frosting

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Caramel Cake (05) by MeetaK

Hope you will allow these thoughts.

It's supposed to be a time for peace, family, love and gratitude. But there is hate and violence instead. Bombay is my birth city and while I left a long time ago the bond between us is special. It's like that first love or that first kiss - you never forget it.

The Oberoi Hotel - it's in my veins. My dad was part of the team that built that hotel. A few days old, my mother brought me to my first "home" in a suite on the 20th floor. Pictures of my first birthday, celebrated at the Oberoi Bombay, adorn the walls in my parents home. 

I remember the summer vacations in India. Now a teenage girl, I was a part of a chic Bombay crowd, who fondly teased me about my American accent when I spoke Hindi. For a few weeks in the summer I reveled in this boisterous city. I won't pretend that I know the city - I've been gone far too long - but my god! My heart bleeds as I see my first love being ripped apart like this.

I am not in Bombay but each gunshot, each blast I hear blasting from the speakers of our television makes me cringe. I feel anger at these evil people with no souls or remorse. And ask "Why?"

Thank you for allowing me to vent and share my thoughts.

I am glad I have this space, relieved that I can come here and take my mind off things or speak my mind if I choose to.

My distraction right now is this month's Daring Bakers challenge. Dolores of Chronicles in Culinary Curiosity was our hostess this month with Alex and Jenny helping out. The recipe of choice was a signature cake by Shuna Fish Lydon of Eggbeater. The caramel cake intrigued me as I have been on a caramel flavor high lately.

Caramel Cake (02) by MeetaK

The rules were simple: make the cake and the caramel butter frosting. Well those who know me will quickly realize where my predicament in this lies - the butter frosting. I do not mind frosting but will avoid it where ever I can. I prefer enjoying cakes and co. in their rustic form without the frills of frosting.

I made the cake last weekend and having skimmed past a few issues over at the members area of the Daring Bakers Kitchen, I picked up that there were some issues with the cake and that especially the frosting was a bit on the sweet side.

Initially, I thought I would leave the frosting out - make an excuse of being abducted by aliens right in the middle of the cake! But hey c'mon it's not my style. ;-)

Caramel Cake (06) by MeetaK

The entire challenge took me three days to make. I was a bit pressed for time this month and had to fit the elements of the cake as time was rationed out to me. So Friday evening found me making the caramel syrup. It had started snowing over the weekend and Soeren was anxious to go out. Snow ball fights and snowmen later I got back to the challenge on Sunday.

The cake itself was quite simple. I decided to keep the flavor of the cake hundred percent caramel. We had the choice of doing our flavor combinations, but I decided this was going to be all about caramel.

After reading Shuna's comment:

"But I will say this about flavours: you will hide and lose the subtlety of the caramel flavour in the cake and that's what this cake is about."

I knew I would be following the recipe to a T, without the addition of extra flavors.

After tasting the cake with a simple drizzling of the caramel syrup, I re-considered the alien abduction excuse. The cake was good - darned good, we all did not need the frosting.

Caramel Cake (01)be MeetaK

Monday and curiosity got the better of me. I examined the frosting recipe and found the brown butter concept appealing. I still had my special jar cakes and half of the whole cake, so I reduced the frosting recipe in half and decided to satisfy my curiosity.

I was glad I did give the frosting a second chance because it was quite good, sweet but good. I used a limited amount of frosting so it was not overpowering, but a delicacy. 

Caramel Cake (03) by MeetaK

 

Don't Forget

MM low-sugar sweet treats


This month the team over at the Daily Tiffin are hosting the Monthly Mingle. We are all looking forward and eagerly awaiting your ideas and creations to this session's theme - Low-Sugar Treats. Come on over and share your healthy treats.

The deadline is December 8th, 2008. See you there.

 

Recipe: Caramel Cake with Caramelized Butter Frosting

(recipe courtesy of Shuna Fish Lydon - Caramel Cake)

Printable version of recipe here.

CARAMEL CAKE

142g unsalted butter at room temperature
280g granulated sugar
½ tsp/2.5 ml kosher salt
80ml Caramel Syrup (see recipe below)
2 each eggs, at room temperature
splash vanilla extract
286g  all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon/2.5ml baking powder
240ml milk, at room temperature

Method
Preheat oven to 350F/176c/gas mark 4.

Butter one tall (5-6/2 – 2.5 inch deep) 23cm/9-inch cake pan.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream butter until smooth. Add sugar and salt & cream until light and fluffy.

Slowly pour room temperature caramel syrup into bowl. Scrape down bowl and increase speed. Add eggs/vanilla extract a little at a time, mixing well after each addition. Scrape down bowl again, beat mixture until light and uniform.
Sift flour and baking powder.

Turn mixer to lowest speed, and add one third of the dry ingredients. When incorporated, add half of the milk, a little at a time. Add another third of the dry ingredients, then the other half of the milk and finish with the dry ingredients.

Note: This is called the dry, wet, dry, wet, dry method in cake making. It is often employed when there is a high proportion of liquid in the batter.'

Take off mixer and by hand, use a spatula to do a few last folds, making sure batter is uniform. Turn batter into prepared cake pan.

Place cake pan on cookie sheet or 1/2 sheet pan. Set first timer for 30 minutes, rotate pan and set timer for another 15-20 minutes. Your own oven will set the pace. Bake until sides pull away from the pan and skewer inserted in middle comes out clean. Cool cake completely before icing it.

Cake will keep for three days outside of the refrigerator.


CARAMEL SYRUP

450g cups sugar
120ml cup water
240ml cup water (for "stopping")

Method
In a small stainless steel saucepan, with tall sides, mix water and sugar until mixture feels like wet sand. Brush down any stray sugar crystals with wet pastry brush.

Turn on heat to highest flame. Cook until smoking slightly: dark amber.
When color is achieved, very carefully pour in one cup of water. Caramel will jump and sputter about! It is very dangerous, so have long sleeves on and be prepared to step back.


Whisk over medium heat until it has reduced slightly and feels sticky between two fingers. Wait for it to cool on a spoon before touching it.


Note: For safety reasons, have ready a bowl of ice water to plunge your hands into if any caramel should land on your skin.


CARAMELIZED BUTTER FROSTING

12 tablespoons unsalted butter
454g confectioner’s sugar/icing sugar, sifted
60-90 ml heavy/double cream
10ml vanilla extract
30-60 ml caramel syrup
Kosher or sea salt to taste

Method
Cook butter until brown. Pour through a fine meshed sieve into a heatproof bowl, set aside to cool.

Pour cooled brown butter into mixer bowl.

In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, add confectioner's sugar a little at a time. When mixture looks too chunky to take any more, add a bit of cream and or caramel syrup. Repeat until mixture looks smooth and all confectioner's sugar has been incorporated. Add salt to taste.

Note: Caramelized butter frosting will keep in fridge for up to a month.
To smooth out from cold, microwave a bit, then mix with paddle attachment until smooth and light

 

 


Verdict

Caramel Cake (04) by MeetaK

I loved the nuances of gold and rust this cake took as it baked in the oven. Cutting it was pure pleasure. It was spongy and moist - just how a cake should be, I thought. Although, we liked the cake as it is, the caramelized butter frosting in moderation gave it a creamy complementing flavor. It was a very different cake flavor-wise. I browned my caramel quite deeply, which gave the entire cake an intense caramel taste. It was exquisite.

Would I make this again?
This was a different kind of cake as the ones we have been doing in the Daring Bakers group. In comparison the caramel cake looks rather plain - but a bite of this caramel delight was so incredibly good that no layer cake can stand up to it. It's versatile too - if one wants - it can be easily be transformed into a layer cake. The cake rises very well and when cut horizontally one could add a layer of the frosting in between the cake. However, I liked it in it's simplest and purest form and will be making this again.

What did I learn from this challenge?
I did not experience any issues with the cake, the syrup or the frosting. The recipe is easy to follow and very straightforward, giving great results. The browning of the butter for the frosting was something new to me and I think if I ever wanted frills on my cakes I will use this method again. 

I thank all three hosts for this month's challenge. My Daring Bakers colleagues have made several variations of this cake so please do visit them for more ideas and inspiration.

You might like these past Daring Baker creations from WFLH:

Yule Log 01 PartyCake 10 framed OperaCake 02 framed
Yule Log - Bûche de Noël Perfect Party Cake Opera Cake

The Daring Bakers celebrated their second anniversary this month and I for one am glad to be a part of this exceptional group of talented bakers. I've learned so much in the past year and a half. My biggest thanks goes to Ivonne for convincing me to join the group and to Lisa for creating the Daring Bakers legacy and for all their hard work.


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2008 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

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After Hours: Pear Cranberry Chutney Spiced with Star Anise

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Pear Cranberry Chutney (03) by MeetaK

After hours - the dinner dishes are still scattered on the table - traces of an entertaining and fun meal. Giggles in the kitchen and cheers from the living room - everyone has settled in well. Stories have been told and news has been shared now it's time for the important stuff.

As the boys gather around the television to watch the game, the girls catch up on the latest gossip. It's a wonderful evening - cold, but the moon is shining, the stars glitter on a velvet black sky and the snow crunches beneath the feet.

It's only been a few hours but there is a slight craving again. The meal was rich and plentiful and everyone indulged excitedly not only in the chatter but also in the food. However, there is a yearning for sweet savory bites. Something decadent to nibble on - not a stately portion just a bite to satisfy the longing of an after hours craving.

Pear Cranberry Chutney (02) by MeetaK

A variety of cheese and a special something - sweet but with a spicy note. A delicate chutney to entice everyone back together again. One more time - gather around and be thankful for friends, family and food.

Recipe: Pear Cranberry Chutney

Ingredients
Printable version of recipe here.

5 medium sized pears, peeled and diced
Small piece of ginger, finely chopped
1 red chili, finely chopped
2 whole star anise
2 limes, zest and juice
150g fresh cranberries 
Agave syrup, to taste
1/2 - 1 teaspoon Agar agar powder
2 tablespoon canola oil

Method

In a saucepan heat the oil and quickly sauté the diced pear and chili. Add the ginger, agave syrup, agar agar, lime juice and zest and finally the cranberries. Bring everything to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes until the pear cranberry chutney thickens.

Fill the pear cranberry chutney into clean sterilized jars then place in the refrigerator to cool.

The chutney will keep in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks. 


Verdict

Pear Cranberry Chutney (01) by MeetaK

The pear and cranberry chutney is a perfect partner to wild, poultry and veal, but it works delectably with a fresh piece of bread and a slice of your favorite cheese. That's why it's my favorite after dinner treat. A platter of cheese, a few grapes, some fresh sliced rustic bread and this pear and cranberry chutney is the best way to keep the crowd comfortingly happy.

Although I do not have any vegan friends I did try to veganize the pear cranberry chutney, as I have been playing around with several recipes. So Sug's Vegan Ventures Round 2 was the perfect occasion to show-off one of my attempts. I hope I did a good job here as it is unexplored territory I am treading in.

Don't Forget

MM low-sugar sweet treats


This month the team over at the Daily Tiffin are hosting the Monthly Mingle. We are all looking forward and eagerly awaiting your ideas and creations to this session's theme - Low-Sugar Treats. Come on over and share your healthy treats.

The deadline is December 8th, 2008. See you there.

 

You might like these other "after hours" treats from WFLH:

LavashAjvar 03 ApricotSalsa02 framed TroutMousse02
Ajvar - Roasted Pepper, Aubergine and Garlic Dip Apricot Salsa Mousse de Truit

Wishing you all a happy Holiday. Enjoy your Thanksgiving with your loved ones. I will be taking a short break to enjoy the next few days with my family and friends. Plenty planned and there will be lots of good food.

See you soon!

Hugs! 


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2008 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

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Quark Vanilla Panna Cotta with Star Anise Cranberry Compote and Spiced Pecan Brittle

| 33 comments
Quark Panna Cotta Cranberry Compote (01) by MeetaK

Maybe it's just that time of year - but I am addicted to spices. After spending a Saturday afternoon playing around with various spices and flavors in the kitchen, the entire house is suffused with a mixture of sweet and sharp fragrances. It's almost like living in a spice store!

I even have small oranges spiked with cloves adorning my Fall tabletop decorations. So, as I relax on the couch to go through my notes, there is that sensational sweet, tangy and clove-y aroma that lingers in the air.

A little while back when I made homemade quark, I think it hit all the right food tones with you. I received several emails after that post with questions and help shouts. It was exciting to accompany a few of my blog friends as they made homemade quark from that specific post.

So once the quark is made what can you do with it? - a few wanted to know. If you too are looking for inspiration you can turn to a selection of quark recipes provided by yours truly.

Maybe your tastebuds will find pleasure in my newest creation. A delightful dessert somewhere between a light and fluffy mousse and a creamy panna cotta. Looking at the method it indeed is prepared like any panna cotta recipe, however with the addition of quark, the dessert takes on a whole new dimension. The quark panna cotta becomes lighter with a slight tangy flavor, it's still rich but airy at the same time.

Very much en vogue, cranberries provide a beautiful flavor balance to the sweeter quark panna cotta cream. The cranberry compote is spiced with star anise and a hint of cinnamon, which is found again in the spiced pecan brittle. The pecan brittle is a delicacy in itself, but adding a lovely texture to the entire quark panna cotta and cranberry compote. Spiced with ground cardamom, cinnamon and a touch of allspice, you'll find not nibbling on them before the guests arrive extremely arduous!

This is a perfect make ahead dessert. The quark panna cotta can be made 1-2 days ahead and stored in the refrigerator, the cranberry compote will keep up to a week if stored in an air-tight jars in the refrigerator and the pecan brittle can also be made a day ahead, then stored in a dry air-tight container. All you need to do is assemble the individual components just before serving. 

Quark Panna Cotta Cranberry Compote (02) by MeetaK

I am just about wrapping up my Holiday menu idea with this post. Next week I have one last treat in store for you. Something for "après dinner", when the boys are watching football and we girls want to indulge in something more sophisticated. LOL!

Don't Forget

MM low-sugar sweet treats


This month the team over at the Daily Tiffin are hosting the Monthly Mingle. We are all looking forward and eagerly awaiting your ideas and creations to this session's theme - Low-Sugar Treats. Come on over and share your healthy treats.

The deadline is December 8th, 2008. See you there.

 

Recipe: Quark Vanilla Panna Cotta with Star Anise Cranberry Compote and Spiced Pecan Brittle

Ingredients
Printable version of recipe here.

Quark Vanilla Panna Cotta

300g heavy cream
250g quark
75g sugar
2 sheets gelatine
1 vanilla bean, scraped and pod reserved

Start Anise Cranberry Compote

350g fresh cranberries
100 - 150 ml cranberry juice
2-5 tablespoons sugar, depending on how sweet you like it
1-2 whole star anise
1/2 cinnamon stick
1 whole allspice

Spiced Pecan Brittle

250g pecans, dry roasted
4-5 tablespoons sugar
2-3 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice

Method

Quark Vanilla Panna Cotta

In a saucepan bring the sugar, cream and vanilla, including the pod, to an energetic boil. Reduce heat and simmer for approx 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Soak gelatine in cold water for 5 minutes.

Remove saucepan from heat and discard the vanilla pod. Squeeze out the gelatine and dissolve in the hot cream mixture.

In a small bowl whisk the quark until smooth and creamy. First stir in 2 tablespoons quark into the warm cream mixture, then pour the cream mixture into the quark. Stir to incorporate.

Fill 6 individual serving bowls or one large bowl with the quark panna cotta. Place in the refrigerator overnight.

Start Anise Cranberry Compote

In a large sauce pan add sugar, fresh cranberry and juice. Stir until ingredients have incorporated. Turn heat to medium-high and bring the mixture to a boil. Add the spices, then reduce to medium and allow to simmer until the cranberry mixture has reduced and resembles a thick jelly-like consistency. Taste for sweetness.

Discard whole spices and set the cranberry compote aside.

Note: If making ahead the cranberry compote can be stored in sterilized jars for up to a week in the refrigerator.

Spiced Pecan Brittle

First you need to make a caramel like mixture by adding the sugar and water in a saucepan. Mix with a wooden spoon, then turn up heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the caramel turns a amber color. This will take 8-10 minutes.

Continue in medium-low heat until the mixture has reduced into a thick syrupy consistency.

Prepare a baking sheet lined with waxed paper. In a bowl large enough to hold the pecans, mix together the ground spices.

Once your caramel mixture is thick and sticky (the mixture is ready when a small amount dropping in a cup of cold water becomes brittle) add the pecans, stirring quickly to coat the nuts with the sugar. Then add the warm sugared pecans to the bowl with the spices and toss quickly. Turn out the pecans onto the waxed paper and allow to set.

Once set, coarsely chop the pecans.

Serving: If you are serving the quark panna cotta in individual bowls, once set, add a tablespoon of cranberry compote on top and sprinkle generously with the pecan brittle. Alternatively, if you have made one large bowl, dip a large tablespoon in warm water and scoop out separate portions onto a plate. You can serve the cranberry compote on the side or decoratively around the quark panna cotta portions. Sprinkle with the spiced pecan brittle.

 


Verdict

Quark Panna Cotta Cranberry Compote (03) by MeetaK

Conclude any dinner with this creamy elegance and you'll have your guests begging for more. Panna cotta is one of my favorite desserts and I have often made several variations, however, with the addition of quark this dessert became a whole new experience. The star anise spiced cranberry compote brings fruity flavor and the spiced pecans a luxurious texture to the entire dessert. The warm spices are soothing, yet tantalizing rounding off your meal perfectly.

I hope I was able to inspire you just a bit with this Holiday menu idea. Maybe you will be able to integrate a few aspects from the menu for your own Holiday meal. If you have any questions let me know either in the comments sections of this post or simply email me.

If you are looking for more Holiday menu ideas, join me over at FoodieView, where in my latest article - The Big Holiday Menu Planner, I have compiled an excellent list of appetizers, entrées, sides and desserts, from all around the blogesphere.

You might like these dessert varieties from WFLH:

BananaBriochePudding 07  CantucciniChessecake01 Lemon Meringue Pie 01
Banana Brioche Pudding with Baileys Caramel Cream Cantuccini Plum Cheese Cakelettes Lemon Meringue Pie

From around the blogs:

 

Daily Tiffin Reading Tip:

 


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2008 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

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Thanksgiving Starter: Mushroom Cream Soup with Thyme Parmesan Chips

| 28 comments
Mushroom Cream Soup (03) by MeetaK

As Thanksgiving seems to be on everybody’s minds right now (at least all those who celebrate it), it thrilled me that my menu planner was a huge help to many of you. Furthermore, I am glad that recipes for Turkey Roulade with Cranberry Mushroom Stuffing and the Roasted Thyme Jerusalem Artichoke, Kohlrabi and Butternut Squash seemed to hit the right note with several of my readers.

Quite a few emails came fluttering into my mailbox with requests for more tips and helpful ideas. A few also asked why do I celebrate Thanksgiving? A very good question considering the fact I am Indian, married to a German and living in Germany – where does Thanksgiving fit into this picture?

Well it actually is something that goes back to the time we were living in Doha. We were going to a British school but had several American friends. My parents’ social circle also consisted of several American expatriate families and each year we were invited to celebrate Thanksgiving with them. One year my mother suggested that everyone come over to our place for Thanksgiving. It was the least she could do to show her appreciation of all the lovely kind gestures these friends had shown to us.

I think at first everyone was a bit stumped. How radical - the idea of celebrating Thanksgiving at an Indian family’s home! However, my mother as many of my regular readers will know, is a unique and talented person. She was certainly not going to let a dead bird get in her way. Although she had never prepared a turkey before she was bold enough to take on the task of inviting what I remember as an army of friends.

I also do remember the slight panic attack she had as she pondered over recipes and I very well remember how she convulsed when she actually saw the size of the bird. At that time I was not any help at all! The kitchen was a waste of time for me and I was far too busy with other activities to even consider asking my mother if she needed any help. Today I know what a task it must have been for her.

Mushroom Cream Soup (04) by MeetaK

But my mother pulled the dinner off successfully in her own unique way. Ever since then we made it a point to celebrate every year. My parents told us that there were several things that we should be thankful for and this day officially became a way for us to be grateful for the simple and not so simple things in life.

In Germany the American Thanksgiving is not really a concept. I sometimes got the feeling it was even ridiculed as just another "Ami" holiday! However, over the years it bugged me and I started inviting close friends to a elegant gathering every year. I made it a point that everyone said a few words about what they were thankful and soon this became a highlight for my close friends.

I have moved from city to city here in Germany, the coolest thing is it seems like I have left a trail of the Thanksgiving feeling behind. My friends call , telling me they miss the gatherings, a few even celebrate on their own. Here in Weimar I have found a very intimate circle of friends who have become as close as family to me. Celebrating with them each year is a joy and we have become a very efficient team, each knowing what to do.

I am thankful for all these friends who were a part of my life and helped me feel a little at home away from family. To my ever inspiring mother, who always injected the world around her with vitality, I am forever indebted.

And so it came to be that this Indian girl living in Germany with her German husband and son, celebrates this American holiday with all the gusto, frills, turkey and stuffing.  

Mushroom Cream Soup (01) by MeetaK

What caught my eye about this recipe, from one of my favorite German food magazines, for mushroom cream soup was not only the crispy thyme Parmesan chips but also that it was a perfect way to start off the meal with my turkey roulade and roasted vegetables. While mushrooms are present in the stuffing for the turkey roulade, thyme adds its aromatic flavor to the roasted vegetables. Both ingredients are also highlighted in the soup.

Mushroom Cream Soup with Thyme Parmesan Chips

Ingredients
Printable version of recipe here.

400g potatoes, diced
20g dried porcini mushrooms, soaked in 1 1/4 l warm water for 30 minutes, reserving water
750g Crimini mushrooms, half thinly sliced, half coarsely chopped
2 onions, diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper
150g Parmesan cheese, grated
8-10 stems thyme, finely chopped
2 tablespoons butter
150g cream cheese

Method

In a large pot heat olive oil on medium heat and sauté onions until transparent. Add the chopped mushrooms and quickly stir-fry for a further 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Add potatoes, porcini mushrooms including soaking liquid and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for approx. 20 minutes.

In the meantime line a baking tray with waxed paper. Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees C.

Mix half of the thyme with grated Parmesan cheese in a bowl. Using a tablespoon place small heaps of Parmesan-thyme mixture on he wax paper, leaving a few cms space in between each heap. Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes until parmesan has melted and look like flat discs. Set aside to cool.

Heat butter in skillet on medium heat and sauté sliced crimini mushrooms for 5-8 minutes, then add remaining thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Melt cream cheese in the soup, then using a puréeing machine, purée soup until smooth and thick. Salt and pepper to taste.

Serve soup in warm bowls, with sautéed mushrooms and Parmesan chips.

 


Verdict

Mushroom Cream Soup (02) by MeetaK

Rich, strong and full of flavor, this soup is a perfect way to start off an elegant dinner. The parmesan chips are a great alternative to bread, which makes it not too filling for the rest of the meal. Spoon for spoon, one can literally smell the comforting earthy aromas of mushrooms and thyme. A pure joy!

Next up on WFLH the perfect dessert, fruity, creamy and spicy all in one. Stay tuned!

You might like these aromatic soups from WFLH:

CarrotGingerSoup2 Porcini Cream Soup 2 BellPepperSoup 03
Ginger Carrot Soup with Lemon Cream Porcini Cream Soup with Parmesan Red Bell Pepper Soup

Soups from around the blogs:

 

Daily Tiffin Reading Tip:

 


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2008 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

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Monthly Mingle Coffee and Tea Roundup

| 23 comments
 MM TeaCoffee10-2008-550px roundup

No liquids! I had asked you to come up with innovative and unique ideas using coffee or tea. Send me anything using the two ingredients however, not in their liquid form. Of course you came up with a few delectable and creative ideas. I did not expect anything less!

Monthly Mingle - Low-Sugar Treats

MM low-sugar sweet treats Before we get into the roundup let me tell you a bit about our next mingle. This month I am extremely proud to announce that the Monthly Mingle will be hosted over at the Daily Tiffin. My lovely team mate Dee is going to be your gracious hostess for this session.

For those of you who know what the Daily Tiffin is about will know that we are a team of fabulous bloggers who believe in a healthy well balanced lifestyle. The next few weeks will be filled with festivities, food and sweets. Sweet treats that everyone loves to indulge in. Our theme is all about sweet treats - however, we are looking for low-sugar sweet treats. Sure we want to allow our kids to have a sweet treat extra at this time of year and we say yes to indulging. Life would be boring if we always lived by strict rules. But we want to indulge sensibly and with no guilt.

We would like you to help us this month create a plethora of sensible treats. Join us and share your low-sugar sweet treats.

For more details please join us at the Daily Tiffin for Low-Sugar Sweet Treats!

Now lets pour ourselves a steaming cup of coffee or chai, sit back and enjoy the Coffee & Tea roundup. Pictures for each entry can be viewed at the Coffee & Tea picture gallery.

Mains

  1. Coco Cooks - Tea Smoked Wings
  2. History of Greek Food - Tea chicken wrapped in dough

Breakfast

  1. Cooking Books - Prune and Apple Compote in Vanilla and Earl Grey Tea
  2. My Kitchen Stories - Green tea and Quince jelly

Cakes & Cookies

  1. Eats, Eats & Eats - Cappuccino Muffins
  2. Health Nut - Chocolate Espresso Mousse Cake
  3. Couture Cupcakes - Chamomile and Orange Carrot Cupcakes
  4. Aficionado - Mocha Roll
  5. Chocolate Chips for Breakfast - Mocha Cupcakes with Coffee Whipped Cream
  6. Spice-club - Espresso brownie bars
  7. A Foodie Froggy in Paris - Caramelized Pear and Walnut Muffins, Coffee Icing
  8. where's the beef? - Bittersweet Symphony Slice
  9. Cook With Love - Earl Grey Tea Loaf
  10. Fun and Food - Fudgy Mocha Pistachio Brownies
  11. Tasty Curry Leaf - Coffee Cookies
  12. Passionate About Baking - Chocolate Espresso gateau
  13. Zaayeka - Jasmine Matcha and Coffee Chiffon Marble cake
  14. Spanish Recipes - Panellets
  15. Tangerine's Kitchen - Cappuccino Chiffon Cake
  16. eCurry - Layered Coffee Gateau
  17. Pearls of East - Coffee cup cakes
  18. Fragole & Cioccolata - Giant Coffee Bean Cookies
  19. The Singing Chef - Coffee Walnut Cake

Desserts & Sweets

  1. Café LynnLu - Espresso Caramels
  2. Rolling In Dough - Almond Chai Panna Cotta
  3. Lucullian Delights - Cappuccino Tapioca Cream with Chocolate Chips
  4. Morsels & Musings - Orange Slices with Earl Grey Syrup (+ Earl Grey Tipple)
  5. Pearls of East - Coffee creme brûlée
  6. R Khooks - Crème brûlée au thé
  7. My Kitchen Treasures - Spiced Creamy Coffee jellies
  8. HomeMadeS - Jasmine Tea and Lime Parfait
  9. Fundamentally Flawed - vanilla cream cheese panna cotta with coffee gelee
  10. Priya's Easy N Tasty Recipes - Coffee Panna Cotta with Chocolate Chips
  11. What's For Lunch, Honey? - Spiced Chai Latte Cream

Have I missed anyone? I am sorry, just let me know in the comments section of this post and I'll correct my mistake.

Now let's get to those low-sugar treats. See you then!


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2008 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

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Thanksgiving Menu Planner: Turkey Roulade with Cranberry Mushroom stuffing, Marsala-Cider Gravy and Roasted Jerusalem Artichoke, Kohlrabi and Butternut Squash

| 36 comments
Roasted Turkey Roulade (02) by MeetaK

"Don’t stress over Holiday meals!“
„Plan ahead!“

How often have you heard these wise comments from people or websites that offer you good advice? If I had a penny for every time I heard this I would be sitting in Barbados sipping on Mojitos all day long!

The fact is many of us do begin to stress as the Holidays near. Every year I am “taken by surprise” that Thanksgiving or Christmas is just around the corner. Go take a look at your calendar – 2 weeks till Thanksgiving, 6 weeks till Christmas!

Oh I am sorry I did not mean to create mass panic!

One of the main aspects of the Holidays are the meals, which become the center of everyone’s attention. It’s after all where everyone gathers around one table to enjoy a leisurely few hours of discussion and getting re-connected again. It’s where over turkey, gravy, vegetables and dessert people eat more than they tend to, because everything tastes so much better. Food is the star on such occasions. We’ve all realized that over the years. That explains why we fret over a menu, trying to plan a meticulous meal that will suit everyone’s likings and tastes.

And that is exactly where the stress and the panic begins.

In this respect I am really glad to have had opportunity to train as a hotel management trainee in a big luxury class hotel. Everyday I was confronted with a new challenging task – be it the planning of an Arab wedding of a thousand guests, a Fashion show or an exclusive dinner party – it always revolved on the topic of food.

I still use several things I learned back then in my current job. Here I am in charge of planning several events and once again – food is the main topic. Over the years I have refined my talent for planning a menu and organizing an event. It works for me at home and the same idea has worked on larger scaled events too. Therefore, I wanted to share these ideas with you. I am hoping that the pointers I propose will be something you can integrate into your menu planning for Thanksgiving and/or Christmas. However, these ideas are not only limited to Thanksgiving or Christmas but can be used to plan several types of events.

Focus On One Course or One Dish

That was it! I can actually stop my post right here because this is the main “wisdom” I wanted to share with you for this article. This is my “magic wand” for each event I have planned, am planning and will plan in the future!

Depending on the type of dinner you are having, direct your focus to one course or one dish. If you are having a more informal buffet-style, pick one main dish to feature. If your event is a more formal sit-down style dinner then focus on one course.

I normally divide a piece of paper in four sections:

  • Appetizers
  • Entrées
  • Sides
  • Desserts

Generally we all have a rough idea of one or two things we would like to make. It might be that turkey roulade you saw at WFLH or that dessert you saw in your favorite magazine, my point here is to decide which course is getting your attention.

Once you have decided on the course or the dish, you will notice the rest just comes together quite easily. This is not a wise-ass comment from me but something you are already doing instinctively but might not have noticed it.

Example: You have a dessert you really want to make. So you place this as your first item in the dessert section. This is now your main focus. Now you simply select a few other dishes or courses on the basis of flavor combination. You place two ideas for a main course on the Entrée section, then you go back to the dessert to check how these dishes will complement your dessert.

Are you looking for contrasts in flavors and textures? Do you want a harmony of similar herbs/spices all throughout your meal? You will soon realize that by answering a few simple questions your decision will quickly fall on one of the selected entrée dishes. Once you have that you work in the same way to tackle the next section in your menu.

Main Course

For me it is normally the entrée that often gets the main focus. So, on my sheet of paper I will limit myself to writing down a maximum of two possibilities in the entrée section. Not more. Even for a buffet, where having two main dishes is not uncommon, it is advisable to limit yourself only to the two ideas.

If I am having a larger gathering I might want to make sure that the choice I made is feasible. What I mean here is: if I am having a sit-down dinner for 15 guests, what makes more sense?

  1. Serving individual filet steaks where I need to pay perfect attention to each steak or
  2. is it more feasible to go for a roast beef, where I can let the oven to do the job and all I need to do is cut up a piece for each guest.

In this case I would go for option number two. While the roast beef is in the oven I can give my attention to other items.

Now that you have decided what your main course will be you will instinctively start filling out the gaps in the other sections.

Sides

Let’s take this turkey roulade for example: being a poultry dish having a slightly “sweeter” and delicate side is perfectly OK. For a roast beef on the other hand you might decide on something more robust. So you see you have already narrowed down this section.

Once again the rule is write down only a few ideas in this section. Too many ideas will only overwhelm you. I normally serve an absolute max. of three to four sides at my sit-down dinners, including the potato/rice/pasta side.

Look for sides that can be prepared ahead of time. It really will make your life easier. My side in this post of roasted thyme Jerusalem artichoke, kohlrabi and butternut squash was all cut on the previous evening. I even tossed the veggies in oil and thyme, then placed each individual vegetable in separate Ziploc bags and stored them in the fridge, saving the time it takes to cut the vegetables on the day of the dinner.

The vegetables were then placed in the oven for 25-30 minutes with the turkey roulade. Perfect!

Starters or Appetizers

One question you really need to consider here is how are you planning to serve your appetizer? Do you want to make several types of small nibbles and serve them informally so that your guests can still their initial hunger? Or do you prefer to have a starter as a formal course of your meal?

Once again this depends entirely on the atmosphere you are aiming for. My Thanksgiving/Christmas dinners are usually more on the formal side. It’s important for me as a hostess to use each course to sit down and:

  1. get connected with my guests,
  2. come back down and have a break in between the courses,
  3. feed myself!

During the whole year I generally host informal gatherings, so Thanksgiving/Christmas is a time where we all love dressing up and enjoy the atmosphere in an elegant surrounding.

My starter course is often a part of the sit-down dinner and keeping with the time of year, I normally serve a soup. I use seasonal ingredients like squash/pumpkin, root vegetables or mushrooms for my soup. Furthermore, I find that a warm soup is a wonderful and satisfying way to kick off a dinner.

Go back to the main focus of your meal, then decide what would suit your menu best. If your meal is heavier and richer as a whole, you might want to aim for a lighter salad, maybe even a combination of a “hot-cold” salad.

For such formal sit-down dinners where I have one dish for the starter course, I always make sure it is vegetarian. The reason is simple: I have a lot of friends who are vegetarians!

Considering Each Food Issue

Uncle Sam does not eat mushrooms, Aunt Jane is gluten intolerant, Cousin Meghan is a vegetarian – does this sound familiar? As hosts or hostesses we need to consider each guest’s “food issue”. For those planning a menu it’s not an easy task to come up with an innovative menu, which takes each family member’s specific needs into account as well.

My trick is easy. It’s something I have picked up over the years, by observing my vegetarian friends. I do not fret about creating an extra vegetarian entrée for them!

I make certain that my starter/appetizers are entirely vegetarian, the sides I select are primarily vegetarian and together they are versatile and creative enough to satisfy a vegetarian appetite.

In the same way analyze your guest list and try to incorporate their food issues within your menu - without any “extras”.

My friends actually told me they feel so comfortable with this because it’s all so subtle. They do not feel “different” because they have a specific dietary restriction.

I normally like making a tart, pot pie or gratin. In smaller portions they make great sides, but for my vegetarian guests in larger portions a great main.

Desserts

For me the queen of the meal and just like any queen she needs to be sophisticated and elegant.

For some reason I like selecting the dessert at the end. “Keeping the best till the last” or like the "cherry on the cake", selecting a dessert for my menu is always my favorite part. And if I am honest, it is also the part of the menu that often gets me sidetracked. There are so many delicious things to make and I often wish I could serve them all in one dinner.

Once I have re-focused, I go through the same steps as above - checking against the rest of my menu and the flavor combinations.

Having said that however, you can be more flexible and even playful with the selection of your dessert. There are not many rules here - just keeping in mind the body of your entire meal. By this I mean if your meal was very rich and heavy – serving a lighter and fluffy dessert instead of a heavy layer cake will bring more points.

Many of you are probably already planning your menus in this fashion without even knowing it. For you, I am hoping that reading this article will help you to reinforce the method more consciously.

For those of you who were stressing and not getting the whole menu planning thing quite right, I hope that the suggestions here will help you to refine your talents further.

Fact is you do not need to be a rocket scientist to plan a party, dinner or buffet. You just need a piece of paper, a pen and a focus on ONE dish or course!

With this post I am kicking off a series of posts all revolving around the Thanksgiving dinner I will be preparing. As I mentioned I normally start off with the main course. Therefore, the featured recipes here are for the stuffed Turkey roulade and one of my selected vegetable sides. Next week I will focus on the starter and dessert and share the recipes for both with you.

I would also like to put together a list of different menu ideas for you using recipes from What’s For Lunch, Honey? So look out for that next week too.

Now I hope you are hungry!

Turkey Roulade with Cranberry Mushroom Stuffing

This is a fantastic alternative to a whole Turkey. To be honest, I actually prefer a succulent turkey breast to a whole turkey. A turkey roulade is a manageable dish to prepare, it's uncomplicated with regards to cooking time as it does not take hours to make and best of all you can prepare the roulade ahead of time, simply cooking it a good hour before you are ready to eat. Roasting the turkey breast at high heat seals the juices, guaranteeing a tender and succulent cut of meat. The lovely thing about this turkey roulade is that by stuffing it with cranberries I can easily omit the cranberry sauce and concentrate on another side dish. I use the pan juices, refining it with Marsala wine and cider to give a beautiful gravy.

Roasted Turkey Roulade (01) by MeetaK

Recipe: Turkey Roulade with Cranberry Mushroom Stuffing & Marsala-Cider Gravy

Ingredients
Printable version of recipe here.

2 1/2kg boneless turkey breast with skin, butterflied (see notes below)
500g Crimini mushrooms, finely chopped
400g dried cranberries
120g parsnip, diced
150g onions, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
Handful of sage leaves, chopped
60g butter
20g butter, melted
Canola oil
Salt and pepper
120 ml Marsala wine
400 ml unfiltered apple cider 
1 bay leaf
2-3 whole cloves  
1 tablespoon cornstarch

You'll also need: kitchen twine, heavy duty foil

Method

Making the stuffing

In a large skillet heat some of the butter and sauté the onion, garlic and diced parsnip until fragrant. Add some of the sage, reserving some for later, a pinch of salt and some pepper. Stir occasionally, then add the mushrooms the remaining butter and continue to sauté until the mushrooms have softened.

Add the cranberries and sauté for another 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

Notes: The stuffing can be prepared a day advance and stored in the refrigerator in an air-tight container.

Making the Turkey

Place an oven rack in the oven and pre-heat the oven to 230 degrees C.

Once you have butterflied your turkey breast (see notes below), arrange the breast with a short side nearest to you, skin side facing down. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Spread the stuffing evenly over the turkey breast, leaving about a 2 cm border on all sides. Fold the short side nearest to you over the stuffing, enclosing the stiffing securely. Now roll up the turkey breast tightly.

Place the turkey roulade seam side down, then tie crosswise, at about 2.5 cm intervals, with the kitchen twine.

Brush turkey with melted butter then sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Heat some canola oil in a skillet on high heat. Place the turkey, seam side down, and brown, sealing the juices in. Brown the meat on all sides until the skin is golden and crispy.

Remove the roulade and place in roasting pan. Keep the skillet aside. Roast the turkey roulade, uncovered for about 30 minutes, turning it around about half way through.

Take roasting pan out then pour in the Marsala wine, 250 ml cider, cloves, bay leaf and the remaining sage. Cover roasting pan with heavy-duty foil and continue to roast for another 35 - 45 minutes, or until the juices run clear.

Transfer the turkey roulade to a cutting board, cover with foil and allow to stand for 15 minutes before slicing. This will give you plenty of time to prepare the gravy.

Notes: How to butterfly a turkey breast

  1. Place the turkey breast on a cutting board. Determine which long side is the thickest. Starting on the narrower side and holding knife parallel to the work surface, make a horizontal cut with the knife on the thickest side, about halfway down, to within 2.5 cm of the other side.
  2. Open up the breast as if you were opening a book. Cover the breast with plastic wrap. Pound with a rolling pin or meat mallet to an even 2 cm thickness. Remove plastic wrap.
  3. Spread the stuffing over the breast, leaving a 2 cm border on all sides. Roll the breast up into a cylinder.
  4. Secure the roulade by tying it with kitchen twine..

MAKE AHEAD TIP:

  • Prepare the turkey roulade through to the stuffing. Once rolled you can wrap the roulade in plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 8 hours.
  • On the morning of your dinner, brush the turkey roulade with the melted butter and brown on high heat in the skillet. Then place in the roasting pan and cover. On the evening, pour in the liquids, spices and herb, then cover with foil and roast for the 35-45 minutes.

Making the Gravy

Using the skillet in which the turkey roulade was browned, heat to high, pour in the juices from the roasting pan, scraping the bottom of the skillet to deglaze it.

Strain the juices through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Skim off fat. then pour back into the skillet. Bring the juices to a boil.

Whisk together the cornstarch and remaining cider, then whisk into boiling sauce and boil until the sauce thickens.

Slice turkey roulade into thin slices and serve with marsala-cider gravy.

 

Roasted Thyme Jerusalem Artichoke, Kohlrabi and Butternut Squash

I love the several levels of flavors in this side. The contrasts of the earthy notes of the Jerusalem artichoke and kohlrabi against the sweet, nutty aromas of the butternut squash is purely wonderful . The vegetables are crisp and fresh, the thyme adding a wonderful fragrance. Convenience is the main key with this side as you can roast these vegetables right along with the turkey roulade.

Roasted Kohlrabi and Squash (03) by MeetaK

Recipe: Roasted Thyme Jerusalem Artichoke, Kohlrabi and Butternut Squash

Ingredients
Printable version of recipe here.

4 medium kohlrabi, cubed
400g Jerusalem artichokes, cubed
500g butternut squash, cubed
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Handful fresh thyme, finely chopped
Salt and freshly cracked pepper

Method

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place in the oven. Pre-heat oven to 230 degrees C.

Put each vegetable separately in three individual bowls. Add one tablespoon olive oil in each bowl, some thyme, salt and pepper and toss the vegetables.

First transfer the kohlrabi to the preheated baking tray and roast for 15-20 minutes. Stirring occasionally.

Then spread the squash and Jerusalem artichokes over the kohlrabi and roast until vegetables are tender, approx. 20-30 minutes.

Once ready, take out and toss the vegetables to combine.

MAKE AHEAD TIP:

  • Prepare the vegetables a day ahead. Cut each vegetable separately and place, separately in Ziploc bags.
  • You can even prepare the vegetables as far as tossing them individually in the oil, then store in Ziploc bags. Store in refrigerator.

Notes: If you are roasting the vegetables along with the turkey roulade, pre-heat the baking tray for 15 minutes while the turkey roasts, then roast vegetables on a rack below the turkey roulade. 

 


Verdict

Roasted Kohlrabi and Squash (02) by MeetaK

Two dishes perfectly harmonized with each other yet delectable on their own. The turkey offers several wonderful flavor dimensions. Earthy, sweet and rich, the meat itself is tender and succulent, together with the gravy an explosive dish. The vegetables add a great magnitude to the meal and plays off the flavors of the turkey roulade brilliantly.

I hope this little menu planner help will aid you in the future to create a perfect menu for your events with ease and no stress. Next week we'll be counting down to Thanksgiving and I'll share with you recipe ideas for a starter and dessert that would fit in with this meal. So stay tuned for that. I will also present you with several different menu ideas using dishes from WFLH to help you find your favorite menu. So don't panic that Thanksgiving is in two weeks - together we'll find you a perfect menu to dazzle your guests. 

Daily Tiffin Reading Tip:

 


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2008 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

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Test Driving a Thanksgiving Meal

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Thanksgiving Feast by MeetaK

What do you think? Look good to you?

It certainly tasted awesome. I need more time to put my thoughts together for you. Tomorrow - I'll let you in on a lot more than just the recipes for these two dishes. I'll give you a few tips on planning a perfect menu for your Holiday meal.

In the meantime you can tell me what your difficulties, problems, ideas or thoughts are about planning a menu for a feast.

Stay tuned?


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2008 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

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Spiced Chai Latte Cream

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Chai Latte Cream (01) by MeetaK

Hello girls! So nice of you to drop by. Quickly come on in out of the cold. I've made steaming cups of chai. Let's get comfy on the sofa - I have some hot news to share.

Guess with whom I spent my evening on Thursday night? Yes - him again. I can't help it he makes me weak! An evening with him and it's just so full of action. From Italy to London to Austria all in one evening!

When he looks down at me with those piercing steel blue eyes I get goose bumps all over, when he talks in that refined accent my knees begin to wobble. Did you know he works for the British government? Of course! He even has a fancy employee ID number - 007. But I prefer James - James Bond. :-)

Do you want more chai? Talking about chai - did you know that chai has a fascinating legend?

Chai Latte Cream (03) by MeetaK

One of the legends of chai takes us to China more than 5000 years ago. It was said that the ruler Shen Nung was a sharp and sophisticated regent, an adept scientist and a skilled artist. Furthermore, he was provident and he placed high values that the water was boiled prior to consumption for sanitary reasons.

One day as Shen Nung and his royal court were traveling to a distant province they made a halt under some bushes and trees. As Nung's cook boiled water, a few dry leaves fell into the water and colored the water a deep rust color. Shen Nung however insisted on drinking the water. He found that it was not only refreshing but also invigorating and so, legend has it, the first tea was born.

This wonderful drink became very popular very quickly and many people appreciated the wonderful flavors and aromas. The tea leaves were given as gifts to dignified guests from all over the world. These guests brought the tea leaves back home so that their kings, monarchs and rulers too could experience the refreshing drink.

At the time in India the maharajas' preferred drink was a delicate mixture made out of warm milk, sugar, ginger, cardamom and other spices. One clever cook decided to surprise his maharaja with a special drink. He added a few of the tea leaves into the boiling milk and spice mixture creating an exquisite harmonic composition. The tea leaves had a cooling effect balancing the warming character the spices presented.

Today we enjoy this combination of a handful of black or green tea leaves with a touch of Indian spices as Chai.

Two different pronunciations have made their way into several other languages today. While the old Chinese character for tea was 茶, it was pronounced differently in various Chinese dialects.The word chai is derived from the the Mandarin spoken word chá (tscha). During the Zhou-Dynasty around 700 B.C the pronunciation for tea came from the old Chinese character 荼 tú (te), which became the derivative of our English word tea.

Tea (English), Tee (German), thé (French), teh (Indonesian) are all used in our modern day languages and mainly describes the drink using tea leaves and water as created by Nung's cook in our story. On the other hand the words chai (Hindi), Chya (Nepalese), cha (Japanese) and tschai (Russian) are still used to describe the spiced milk and tea mixture created by the Indian maharajas.

Fascinating isn't it? Oh I am sorry girls - you are all out of chai. Well I have a little surprise for you. All that story telling has got me craving for something sweet and spicy. So, how about a velvety chai latte cream? You'll need a spoon for the thick, rich and luscious chai latte cream, flavored with cardamom, cinnamon, black pepper, ginger and black tea leaves. The chai latte cream is spicy yet soothing and an invigorating dessert after a heavy dinner.

Oh look the boys are here. Good thing I have enough chai latte cream for everyone!

Chai Latte Cream (04) by MeetaK

Recipe: Spiced Chai Latte Cream

Ingredients
Printable version of recipe here.

1/2l + 1/8l whole milk
30g corn starch
100g heavy cream
5-7 tablespoons good quality black tea leaves
2 cinnamon sticks
4 cardamom pods, slightly crushed
10 black peppercorns, slightly crushed
3-4 cloves
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Cocoa powder

Electric milk whisk

Method

In a saucepan bring the 1/2l milk to a boil, then reduce heat and add the tea leaves, sugar, cinnamon, cardamom, peppercorns, cloves and fennel seeds. Simmer for approx. 1 minute.

Allow to steep for 30 minutes, then strain the milk discarding the tea leaves and spices. Pour the spiced chai milk back into the sauce pan and bring back to a gentle boil.

Meanwhile, mix about 3-4 tablespoons water with the corn starch in a cup and whisk to a thick, smooth mixture. Pour the corn starch mixture into the chai mixture and whisk until it thickens. Keep whisking for approx. 1-2 minutes until you get a pudding like consistency, smooth and creamy free from lumps.

Remove from heat and allow to cool, stirring occasionally.

Beat the cream until stiff, then gently fold into the spiced chai mixture. Divide into four tall glasses and place in the refrigerator to cool for 1-2 hours.

Before serving heat the 1/8l milk and with an electric milk whisk beat the milk until nice and frothy. Spoon the milk froth over the chai cream and sprinkle with some cocoa powder.

Serve the chai latte cream with almond cookies for a perfect dessert.

Helpful reads:

 


Verdict

Chai Latte Cream (02) by MeetaK

What would you like first? The verdict for the chai latte cream or for the evening with Bond!

Well I'll start with the chai latte cream - it's spicy and it's so different to any other pudding, cream, mousse type of dessert. The fact that there are only 2 tablespoons of sugar makes the chai latte cream not the typical sweet dessert but one that is filled with the spicy aromas of cinnamon, cardamom and co. Yes it's different - but it's bold, full bodied and simply delectable.

As for Quantum of Solace - while Daniel Craig was hotter, tougher and sexier the film lacked a strong story. In the end my heart belongs to someone else. I am not a sexy Bond girl but a spicy Wolff girl. Even though an evening with Bond is like a roller-coaster ride, I prefer getting comfy on the sofa with my Wolff and his pristine blue-green eyes, sending flutters up my spine and wrapped up in this safe strong arms, spooning spicy chai latte cream and talking into the wee hours of the morning.  

This is my entry to the current session of the Monthly Mingle where the theme is Coffee and Tea. If you all would like to join in you still have till Monday, November 10 to send your submissions by then. There have been several great looking creations and this is going to be an exciting roundup!

You might like these creamy desserts from WFLH:

ChocPotsCreme 06 framed PersimmonVerrines 04 SweetPotatoFlan 02
Chocolate Chile Pots De Crème Persimmon Honey Nut Yogurt Verrines Sweet Potato Flan

From around the blogs:

Chocolate Chai Spice Cupcake - Cupcake Bakeshop
Chai Spiced Oatmeal - 80 Breakfasts
Creamy Chai Cheesecake - Zoe Bakes

 

Daily Tiffin Reading Tip:

 


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2008 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

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Bollywood Cooking: Chicken Tikka Masala

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Chicken Tikka Masala (02) by MeetaK

The chicken tikka masala is known all around the world as one of the most popular Indian dishes. The irony of the chicken tikka masala, better known as CTM, though is that what is often enjoyed in restaurants as a traditional Indian dish has very little to do with authentic Indian cuisine.

When Bee of the fantastic blog Rasa Malaysia wrote to me asking me if I would be interested in being a guest writer on her blog I was extremely ecstatic. Bee wanted me to help her show her readers how to cook a chicken tikka masala. She cracked me up when she referred to me as "a real Indian food expert" - I was flattered but modestly and in all honesty admit that I do not consider myself an expert in Indian food and the irony of this is that I am going to be showing Bee and her readers how to cook "Britain's true national dish".

You'll find my recipe for chicken tikka masala and the entire post, taking a closer look at the origins of the dish over at Rasa Malaysia.

Tell me what you think?

Bee, I hope you enjoy this dish as much as we do and thank you for having me over as your guest.

You might like these flavorful chicken dishes from WFLH:

Butter Chicken 01 framed Chicken Curry01 ArabianChicken01
Butter Chicken Chicken Curry Spicy Arabian Chicken


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2008 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

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