Tag Archives: dessert

Kazak Chak-chak!

29 May

I walked into the hostel kitchen the other day to find my Kazak flatmate Diana and her friend Anastasia (don’t both of them sound like princesses? : ) ) making a traditional Kazak dessert for their department’s final function to mark the end of the academic year ( ūüė¶ ).

This dish is called chak-chak (I discovered that if you say Kazak chak-chak enough times, it becomes a tongue-twister) and is a bit complicated to make, but totally worthwhile.

The two girls pose for the camera.

What you need:

For the strips,

3 eggs

2 cups flour

1 tbsp vodka

1 tsp salt

Oil for frying

For the syrup,

300 gms honey (usually one squeezy bottle)

250 gms dried apricot pieces

a handful of raisins

almond powder (to go the extra mile)

What to do

In a deep mixing bowl, combine eggs, flour, salt and vodka and bind it into a dough. Divide the dough into tiny balls, and on a clean, flat surface, roll it into a thin round sheet using a rolling-pin. A good indicator of whether it is the right thinness, is to see if the rolled out dough is transparent enough for you to see the surface underneath.

Like in the picture below, for example. If I tried to roll our dough, I usually end up with the map of a country, as my mother likes to say.

Now make horizontal cuts on the circle to make strips, and further cut these to make really tiny strips.

(Such well manicured hands!)

(As you can tell, it’ll take a while to make this pile)

Heat oil on a high flame and once heated, reduce it to medium. Fry the strips in batches till golden brown and keep aside.

I love the smell of hot oil. It reminds me of home.

I could crunch on these forever...

In another pot, pour the honey and heat it on medium flame, till it boils.

Now combine the honey, the strips, apricot and almond powder into any shape you like. Remember to work fast, because the honey can crystallize very quickly.

Diana and — decided to spell out “Warwick” with the chak-chak. Cute isn’t it?

Once its cooled, you can cut it into pieces and serve. Enjoy!

Yoghurt & Curd: Same-same or different?

4 Apr

I’ve always been fascinated by this question. What makes yoghurt different from curd? Or are they the same?

Before I began looking into this a little deeper, I always thought yoghurt was the American word for curd, and that it was usually falvoured with yummy stuff and sometimes had fruit bits in it and things.

But when I did some internet research, I was startled to see that Yoghurt and Curd are not just different on the level of outer appearances. They are actually made of 2 different base ingredients and have different methods of preparation.

This very informative chap on Yahoo Answers says ”¬†Yoghurt is made from a variety of milks but the term “curd” usually applies to fermented and thickened buffalo milk. Both products are white with a creamy consistency. Set yoghurt is a smooth, firm, white gel with a characteristic acidic taste made by fermenting cow milk…For curd preparation, milk is fermented with mixed natural lactic acid bacteria for making curd…Yoghurt normally is prepared using pure culture. It may have only a single species or sometimes more.”

Imagine!

Speaking of Yoghurt, a friend of mine introduced me to this awesome dessert yoghurt called ‘Amore’s ¬†Walnut and¬†Greek Honey Yoghurt’* and I’m telling you, IT IS YUM. Its got these tiny bits of walnut in it and it reminds me a lot of Mishti Doi (which I greatly miss, by the way).

You can crumble some cookies into it or you can even add dry-fruits/nuts to make it more wholesome. But its just as good as it is. And guess what? Its only 59 P (close to 35 Indian rupees). How about that?

*this is not a plug!

Panna Cotta

25 Mar

The third and last entry in the ‘meals for friends’ series, I made Vanilla Panna Cotta with Cherry sauce for desert. I got the recipe for this from this Youtube video:

I cheated a bit on the compote though. Instead of buying fruit and sugar and golden syrup la la la, I added hot water to black cherry jam and whisked them together to get this yummy sweet-sour sauce that was ready in 2 mins!

Enjoy!

Simbbly Payasam

4 Nov

My classmate Anjuli was visiting my flat and I wanted to surprise her with something yummy but I had about half an hour to work with. So here’s what I did – I made my own version of rice payasam/kheer/pudding!

It’s a really quick and easy recipe. It’s filling, healthy and most of ALL, homely. (sniff, sniff)

What you need:

1 ltr of whole milk

8 tbsp of sugar

200 gm of rice, soaked in water for about 7 to 10 mins

3 elaichi (cardamom) pods

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What to do:

Boil milk over medium heat. Add sugar and cardamom and simmer for about 5 minutes.

Add the rice and simmer till rice cooks, while constantly stirring.

To add an extra flaour to the payasam, you can add 2 tbsp of dry dessicated coconut.

How simmble is that?!

Green Tea Creme with Pistachios ¬© – a cold dessert

14 Aug

This is one of my very own! We had a lot of Japanese Green Tea lying around in the house, and I was at a loss as to how it could be finished (this is especially difficult if you don’t have a taste for it). I don’t remember exactly when the idea of putting it into a dessert came from, but I decided I wanted to use it in a unique way.

If you do some research on Green Tea desserts online, you will come across mostly these Рgreen tea ice cream, green tea cheese cake, green tea jelly etc.  This link http://www.islandteashop.com/recipes/green-tea/dessert.php will give you up to 7 different green tea dessert recipes, including a traditional one with rice.

But the one thing you will notice about the Green Tea dessert recipes online, is that almost all of them use eggs in some proportion or the other. With the constraints of Shravan (the hindu holy month of festivals where Maharashtrians abstain from drinking alcohol and eating non-vegetarian food, including eggs) and the Indian taste buds, I came up with this recipe.

It is to be eaten plain, but I added biscuit to it for a break in texture.

What you need:

For the Green Tea cream-

3 tsp of japanese green tea (if you can handle a more bitter taste, then you are free to add another 2-3 tsp)

3/4 cup of honey

1 tsp nutmeg powder

1 cup of pistachio flakes

200 gm fresh cream, chilled

For the biscuit-

6-8 Digestive biscuits (or any other biscuits with a rough grain), crushed

1 1/2 tsp butter, melted

What to do:

For the green tea cream-

Take fresh cream in a medium sized bowl. Place this bowl inside a bigger bowl filled with chilled water and ice cubes. Whip the cream with a large balloon whip for about 5 to 7 minutes to get a thickish-smooth consistency. If you like the cream more fluffy, then whip till you get stiff peaks. Gently fold in the green tea, honey, and nutmeg. Pour it into bowls/ moulds of your choice and leave it in for 20 mins.

For the biscuit-

In a bowl, mix the biscuit crumbs with butter. In a plate lined with butter paper, flatten the mixture into a thin disc. Keep in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

After 30 mins, take the plate out and using a cookie cutter/ mould, cut out neat circles. Put these in the freezer for about 5 mins.

Reading the dish-

Top the chilled bowls with the biscuit and pistachios. Serve chilled. Enjoy! Serves 4