Tuesday, April 15, 2014

"Nan's Yum-yums! Junior Bakers" - A FUN baking workshop for kids!

Hey there! Exciting news on Nan's Yum-yums! :)

Yes, finally my dreams are getting little wings and flying into horizons anew! I am planning my first baking workshop for kids!

 Summer holidays are here. Schools are closed. Loads of free time on hand. So let's use this time to get creative, shall we? :)

Come along and join me in this FUN workshop and learn some simple, eggless baking! 

Discover the baker in you!! :)

Date: 4th May 2014, Sunday
Time: 9 am - 1 pm
Location: Bloom and Grow - Koramangala, Bangalore 
Age: 7 yrs onwards  
(up to the age that you consider yourself a kid!! :P)
Fee: Rs.1000 
 (all materials will be provided for the workshop)

What awaits you in the workshop?
  • A batch of 10-12 kids.
  • Individual hands-on baking experience.
  • A tutorial for baking healthy muffins and kids-friendly bread/buns. 
  • Bake your own goodies and take them home!
  • Mommies are welcome to join the workshop along with their Junior Bakers.
  • Make new friends and have loads of fun! :)  
If this interests you and if you need more details, please drop in a comment here or send me an email.  
Looking forward to meeting some enthusiastic little Junior Bakers :)

Excited? I definitely am! :)

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Apple Cinnamon Muffin - with Crumble Topping

Okay so I am sensing a 'Muffin' fever heading in our direction as it seems to raining muffins in Nans Yum-yums lately!! Be warned! :D

Well, well... I was super duper delighted with the way my Carrot Muffins turned out that I built up the courage to put into action another muffin experiement. An equally healthy, simple and an eggless muffin creation. 

And this time, am even more pleased with the results, as this was an experiment that took shape in my head! I just wanted apples in my muffins with a cinnamony flavour to it. And yes, I wanted a crunch in the muffins. 

I like a combination of softness and crunch in my muffins... either nuts, choco chips, butterscotch chips. It feels good to bite into softness and get a crunch inbetween. 

So yeah, this time around, I didnt want any of the tried and tested 'crunch' givers. I wanted something else! And I knew exactly what I wanted... a crumble topping! :)

I have read about crumble topping on various sites, but never gave it a try. I believe that there is a right time in life for everything... and the time for me to try crumble topping had come! :D 

The way my crumble topping turned out was better than I expected!! And I am proud to say it was a success at home... as even the Mr, who isn't a muffin/cup-cake/cake fan at all, gobbled up two gleefully!! :)  

Monday, March 17, 2014

Carrot Muffins [Eggless]

Enjoy them as a quick-bite, tea -time snack or as a simple dessert. Cuppie cakes are fun to eat anytime, anywhere! :) Perfectly sized, these little guys are convenient to serve and store. 

I am not a huge icing fan. I prefer my cup cakes with no toppings... I prefer muffins. 

OK.. so now there is no clear cut difference out there between Cup Cakes and Muffins. The most common difference is that one is with icing, while the other isn't. I am not clear on what else is different! Because these little guys don't have icing on them and I happened to love the name 'muffin' I am just going to call them Muffins. And that's settled! ;)

I just had a lot of fresh carrots lying in my fridge one day and I craved to eat something mildly sweet. It also struck me that I hadn't baked a cake for ages... so this recipe seemed perfect and I got busy in the kitchen. 

Less than an hour later, I was nom-nom-noming these muffins and my tummy was happy :)

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Celery Parathas - Guest Post by Pooja Rao

Its always a pleasure to hear back from readers about how some my posts here, helped them in their experiment in the kitchen. And when they send back pictures of their creations, I am simply delighted! :) Yes, these reader-feedback is like fuel to me as  food blogger and I am thankful to all of you who have written back to me with your food stories :)

So, one day when I got an email from Pooja with a picture of the Mushroom Fried Rice that she tried and loved from my blog, i was truly delighted to hear from her. Its wonderful how Internet can bring together two strangers based on common interest. And the common interest here being food! Oh yes, Pooja is one of the most ardent followers of my little space that she has tried and tested more than 15 recipes from my blog. On one occasion, she shared a picture of Capsicum Burji that she had tried and more than the delicious looking burji, my attention was on the very interesting celery parathas that she had made to team up the burji with. Being a huge fan of parathas, I asked if she could do a guest post for me, and she graciously obliged :) Thanks Pooja! :) 

Over to her now....

“Oh my god, sounds so exciting” was my reaction when Nandita asked me to do a guest post. An ardent fan of Nan’s yum-yums, I agreed immediately!!!!! This is such an amazing blog, I have tried most of her recipes & have loved all of them.

Recently, I had been reading a lot about health benefits of celery, so when I saw it at a supermarket, just picked it up without knowing what to cook from it!!!! After a lot of thinking, the idea of making celery parathas hit me. It is a very simple recipe & I’m glad I tried it as it turned out to be very tasty!!! And now, celery is a frequent guest visiting my kitchen.

Pooja paired up the Celery parathas with tri-coloured Capsicum Burji. Healthy wholesome meal! And, isn't that a pretty sight :)

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Garlic Bread | How to Make Garlic Bread With Homemade Bread?

Finally. Oh, finally I got around to make Garlic bread, with my own homemade bread! Oh, you have no idea how relieved I am feeling right now!

Having something on my to-do list for a long time and not being able to give the needed time and attention drives me crazy! Oh yeah... and this one has been sitting in the list, for like ages! I have been baking bread for a while now, and when we talk bread, garlic bread is one of the top on the list right? But no, it sank down on my list and waited patiently in my to-do list :(

Yes, I have made Garlic Bun Rolls a number of times. So that sort of tended to our cravings of garlic bread. But that authentic looking garlic bread... nah, had never been made... until NOW! Yay! :)

This has been one of our favourite orders at Pizza Hut. The ones we get at Dominos are good too, but they are more softer and chewy. They are actually Garlic Bread Sticks. So, the Garlic Bread that we get in Pizza Hut are the crunchy crispy yum variety. I simply love the buttery crunch that this bread has.

So, I am delighted by the way my version of the Garlic Bread turned out. Right from the shape of the bread, to the way they easily sliced, to the final baked bread slices... I was one happy baker beaming at my goodies that popped out of the oven :)

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Minty Onion-Coriander Buns

I-am-back! :) And check out what I have brought along! Some yummcious goodies for you all! :) 

Its been more than a month since I spent some time here. Life has been keeping me busy and once there is a break, its hard for me to get back on track. Sigh! 

So, I was just waiting for that one recipe that I was hoping to bump into which would urge me to simply make some time and blog about! Something that is irresistibly yum and which cannot wait to be shared with the world! And... my hunt ended with this deliciously soft and YUM savoury buns flavoured with mint, coriander and roasted onions. 

The originator of this recipe is one of my college friends who also happens to be an awesome home baker. She has recently been posting pictures of some real yummy stuff she has baked and this one interesting bread caught my attention. The combination of ingredients that went into it fancied me and I simply had to try it out in my own little bakery!

The only variation that I did was to shape them into buns and oh my, did I love them?! Yes yes oh YES! :)

The little bit of cheese that goes into it, gives it an enjoyable flavour and softness. Well, this recipe is so simple and fun to work on, that it definitely is a keeper. These adorable guys are so photogenic that I enjoyed clicking these pictures! Cute, aren't they? :)

Friday, January 24, 2014

Focaccia - 3 ways | Tomato-Cheese-Basil | Potato-Rosemary | Caramelized Onion-Chilly

Focaccia (pronounced as 'Fo-ka-tcha') is an Italian flat bread that looks very similar to Pizza, yet tastes slightly different. Of the few differences between a Focaccia and a Pizza, the shape probably would be the top of the list. Pizza is universally known to be round in shape, whereas a focaccia can be in any shape that you fancy! Square, round, oval, roughly hand shaped... any shape really! Focaccia also uses more oil than pizza. Oil goes into the dough, and is drizzled on top as well. And this very aspect, makes a focaccia is a little more spongier than a pizza.

So, this year's first bread of 2014 for the We Knead To Bake baking gang was Focaccia! And Aparna came up with a brilliant recipe that uses a super flavoursome herbed oil to make Focaccia Caprese - Focaccia with a topping of Tomato - Basil - Cheese. Basil is one of the most scented herb I have come across and one of my favourites! Oh so divinnnnnne. 

The dough is very similar to my trusted yeasted dough recipe... except that this is entirely made of maida and also used more olive oil. I couldn't stop with just that that one topping. I had to try some more. 

So, with the same dough, I went on to make a Potato-Rosemary Focaccia.....

..................and a Caramelized Onion-Chilly Focaccia. 

It was Focaccia galore at home! Oh yum yum yum... I still cant pick a favourite of the three! :D So, here is probably the longest post of mine so far... and I had loads of fun putting it together... hope you enjoy it as much :)

Friday, January 17, 2014

Vaingana Sagle | Stuffed Brinjal in Coconut Gravy | Konkani Dish

'Brinjal' translates to Vaingan in Konkani. and Sagle means 'whole'. So as you have guessed, Vaingana Sagle means Whole Brinjals! This is a very popular dish in Konkani cuisine and is served as a side for rice and dal. The brinjals used in this dish are usually the tiny purple variety which easily cook as a whole. These baby brinjals are stuffed and cooked in a gravy which is a blend of coconut, spices, roasted dal or peanuts. The curry paste is customized in every household to suit their preferences.

I have grown up savouring on my mum's preparation and now recently I got to taste my sister-in-law's variant. Both have different sets of ingredients for making their curry pastes and also the method of cooking the brinjals. My mum deep-fried the brinjals prior to stuffing and cooking them while my sis-in-law stuffed them while raw and steamed them. My mum used peanuts as a main ingredient to make her curry paste, while my sis-in-law used urid dal! 

These variations give a new dimension to the dishes and both taste wonderfully different from the other, each yummy in its own way!

So, this is my take on this dish with main influence from my sis-in-law's method of preparation. I customised the curry paste to suit my liking. Don't these cute little purple binjals look pretty in the beautifully coloured gravy? Oh well... they tasted YUM! :)

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Pumpkin and Spring Onion Paratha

Pumpkin in a paratha? Really? I understand your bewilderment. I was equally apprehensive, when the idea came into my head! 

But, then I just had to try it! Oh, I can be quite persuasive. Even with myself!! :D

So, there I was pressure cooking the yellow pumpkin to make my parathas and it was then that I got the idea of adding in some spring onions as well, to give it a splash of green colour. The combination worked well.

The parathas have a lovely yellow tinge but you get no hint of what is in there! Yes, you do not get a strong pumpkin flavour (if that is a problem for you), you are just left with pretty looking, soft parathas. I guess the puree gives these parathas an extra soft texture, making it a wee bit sticky to knead as well. 

But when you can disguise pumpkin into something appetizing like this, it definitely feels worth it! :) 

Monday, January 13, 2014

Roasted Potato Pasta in Beet Sauce | Potato and Beetroot Pasta

Ever since I made this amazing pasta with Spinach puree [Spinach & Mushroom Pasta], I have been waiting to try my hands at making a similar pasta with beetroot puree. I was just not sure what to pair it with. A perfect pairing is very important here as beetroot has a distinct flavour of its own and may not pair well with veggies that are too powerful on a different flavour. It was not like making the usual tomato based pasta or the pasta in white sauce which are tried and tested sauce bases and are pretty versatile with a whole lot of veggies. Hence, after much contemplation, I decided to stick to the good-old potatoes!

Potatoes is the most versatile vegetable, according to me. You just cannot go wrong with it. Simple to cook, easy to flavour and so friendly that they get along up real well with anything you pair it up with!  

So for this pasta, I planned on pan-roasting boiled potato wedges, along with some Italian seasoning to give the humble boiled potatoes an Italian make over. The result - YUMMILICIOUS Roasted Potatoes! These make great munchies as is and they are not even deep-fried! Oh, I had to hide it from myself to save some for the pasta :D

And oh, the colour that the beetroot puree imparts to the pasta, is so pretty! The rich pink was simply inviting and I used Farfelle pasta here, to enhance the cuteness factor! :) This pasta is so healthy considering the minimal use of cheese, the sauce base being beetroot and the potatoes are only pan-roasted... it really felt nice munching on it!