Wednesday, 28 December 2011

How to avoid eating mini Oreo Cheesecakes

Well, you've just baked (or have brought home, or been gifted) a batch of mini Oreo Cheesecakes and you're trying to loose weight. It's wedding season after all. You think it'd be easy but with these babies, the attraction is like you're two ends of the magnet. You're in love and you belong together. And your mind won't rest till you are one.

Having gone through the same strife, and failing (thrice), I will give you handy tips to stay in a house with the cupcakes without eating them. These are my very expert tips:

1. Feed them to a loved one. This is my favourite ploy for it kills two birds with one stone. Lovingly serve your loved one and earn brownie points with them. At present they will love you for it, perhaps shower you with gifts this new year and for not resisting, they will only have themselves to blame (make sure of that).

2. Do not watch them eat. RUN. HIDE. JUST GET OUT OF THE ROOM.

3. Invite a friend over for coffee. Make some tea or coffee and serve these. Make sure this friend is high maintenance and appreciative (a rare combination) foodies (the most important!). Friends who are demanding will have you running around while they munch because they basically can't resist good food. An extra tip: customize your invitation list by finding out which of your friends just 'loooove' cheesecakes or oreos. You'll be such a hit.

4. Make it pretty. If you've baked 'em then make sure they look gorgeous. If you haven't baked 'em, order them from me cuz I make them look gorgeous. The reason for the prettiness is that you wouldn't (normally) want to destroy a thing of beauty and you would want to show it off. So show it off. And pass on the calories to people who can afford to have them :D

5. Reward yourself. If you're one with will power then set a high goal for yourself. An impossible one, preferably. And only if you achieve this can you have a mini cheesecake. Make sure you can't achieve it.

So that's my five. Time to go have a cupcake (this was my big achievement) hahaha!

Sunday, 25 December 2011

Santa, Santa and Banta

Happy Christmas, everyone! It's time to drink, eat and be merry! Seriously, if Christmas isn't cake season, I don't know what is. It's virtually God giving us a license to hog! I mean the brand ambassador of the season is chubby ol' Santa.

I don't know about you, but we Punjabis have a deep connection with Santa Claus. He stars in all our Santa-Banta jokes, doesn't he? Hee hee. Okay, so that's Santa Singh, but what fun it would be if the three of them hung out together: Santa Claus, Santa Singh and Banta. Ho ho ho-es all over the place! On that note got to click on this hilarious number: Punjabi jingle bells hahaha!! A must watch: Jingle bells will never be the same again!

So, I've been baking a lot these past few days. And I do mean a lot. I don't know which one of the two (Editing and baking) is my part-time job! That line is fast blurring. I also finally designed a logo for moversnbakers and I don't know what you think, but I think it is cute. Green's for eggless and pretty pink's non vegetarian.

I've been kept busy in the kitchen thanks to some friends and colleagues who keep me on my toes by placing orders for cakes and challenge me to learn new things, like the orange chiffon cake which looked beautiful, light and fluffy! 

I did spread some Christmas cheer by gifting my best friend and her family this (wonderful) choco chip can't see the chips cuz it snowed on the cake! And take a peek at the chocolate butterfly before it flies away!

The final and favourite experiment on Christmas day were these wonderfully festive banana cupcakes. I can't get myself to eat them because they're so pretty! A riot of colours like this lovely time of year. May it never pass!

Monday, 19 December 2011

Main Hoon Don Cake

I have been getting quite a few requests by 'eggless people' (I can't believe I said that to someone) for eggless cake recipes. Most people think you can't make a light and spongey cake without the anda, but yesterday I discovered that tha, my friends, is a myth. 'Haan, haan, ye jhooth hai!'

It was a proud day in the kitchen for me. The produce included the gorgeous Lemon Cupcakes (better than last time, thank you very much!) and the baap of all cakes, the Don himself, the Choco Chip Chocolate cake! *collective ooooh aaaaaaaah*

Mind you, these are both eggless and look how high the cake's risen and how soft the insides of the lemon cupcakes look!

Time for some Don music! All hail, SRK -- mere dil ka don! :D

Saturday, 17 December 2011

Cookie Monstar

What's a weekend without baking, what's a Christmas (season) without cookies! Aaah! I finally achieved a batch of -- remarkable, buttery, soft and crunchy -- Choco chip cookies! Now I can die in peace. But I don't need to because heaven is right here, on Saturday morning with a cup of hot chocolate and a plate full of warm choco chip cookies right out of the oven. B-UH-LISS. Sigh Sigh

I know they're just cookies to you but this mountain of misshaped beauties you see is my Everest. This was my third attempt at baking cookies and alas, I finally got it right. This calls for some serious shaking! Bring on the Johnny Bravo move! Sassy!

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Dream a Little Dream of Me

Who doesn't love midnight snacks? And when the snack is a creamy, chocolaty cake...then you look forward to midnight more than anything. Cutting a cake at midnight on birthdays is a tradition in most houses, and why should it not be? It is the most exciting way to start a special day, celebrating the birthday of the most special person in your life.

Even though this is something we do in my family for everyone's birthday, it is also a tradition in my family to be surprised when someone walks in with a cake at midnight, loudly singing the birthday song with candles, flowers and all. It doesn't do if you aren't surprised! Inevitably on every birthday eve, my dad would pretend to sleep precisely at 11 45 pm (which gave us time to make the preparations). And then when we entered the room, he would 'wake up' all shocked asking us, 'aaj kiska birthday hai?', whose birthday is it? Haha!

Today is my friend Shreya's mom's birthday and guess who baked a cake for her? Me, me, and me.

What a way to go to bed! Satisfied and happy that your mom's glad for you and the cake! Sweet dreams, indeed :)

Listen, eat and enjoy: Dream a Little Dream of Me by Louis Armstrong (What a beautiful version!)

Monday, 12 December 2011

How to Eat Your Cake and Meet Her Too

So I was just texting a friend of mine who had recently ordered a Choco-Banana cake and fed it to his office colleagues. He's new in town and I realized that taking cake to office would be a great way for him to become more popular with his colleagues. Heck, he may even get a promotion. Better yet, he might get a date.

That's when I realized the relevance of good food in a relationship. Someone once told me women think more about food than sex. And as a girl, I can totally vouch for that fact. I don't need to see any statistics to prove this. In fact, the old saying about the way to a man's heart being through his stomach is wrong wrong wrong (believe me, I know 'a man' :P). It's actually the true path to a woman's heart. So here's what you're actually saying to a woman when you offer her delicious (home-made, preferably by a bubbly girl in her twenties who likes shaking and baking) varieties of bakes:

1. 'You are not fat': When you give a girl cake, you are telling her that she can afford to eat cake. Her figure's perfect and that there is nothing she has to avoid to 'get into shape'. Girls always love boys who love them just the way they are.

2. A lot can happen over cake: She will have to talk to you now that you are standing there offering her cake...

3. 'I got bake and brawn, baby': Tell her you baked it (I won't mind, I'll even tell you the basic recipe to show off -- but tread carefully, you don't want to enter the 'gay best friend zone' -- so don't indulge in too much recipe talk.) A guy who can bake and be macho is every 21st century woman's dream.

4. Women turn to sweet stuff on a bad day. And if she's having a bad day, she needs someone to talk to...(are ya getting the drift here...?)

5. Happy hormones: Everyone knows desserts (mostly chocolates) release Endorphins or happy hormones -- A great chance to share a laugh, yes?

If you can think of any other logical explanations for this, please share it with all the single boys out there. Meanwhile, the progressing order of cakes and where to order :)

Cupcakes: I think I'm gay
Vanilla Sponge cake: You're like my sister
Miss Orange-nality: Notice me, I'm different
Chocolate cake: A Classic -- I am interested, are you?
Let's Date cake: A prophecy
Apple Crumble: I can be your friend, too
Black Forest cake: Things are getting serious
**Please don't take this post too seriously. 
You're not gay if you like cupcakes. Call them muffins next time.
Sing along: My Girl by The Temptations

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Have Mercy

It all began with a thought. There were a few doubts and a couple of goof ups but it was all worth it. On Saturday night, 11 30 pm came alive my very first attempt at the Black Forest cake.

Minus the cherries, this piece of (messy) art tastes just like it should. It is soft and spongey, cuts easily and the texture is just right. I would have liked to get more height and make it neater, and I will perfect it very soon, but for now, this is my masterpiece. 

If I were to listen to a song while eating this yum cake, it would be Mercy by Duffy, for obvious reasons -- this cake will bring you to your knees! 

It's true, you never really forget your first love. :) 

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Lemon Tree

I am totally psyched about my adventures in the kitchen today. It was an absolute experiment and it turned out beautiful! I baked lemon cupcakes!

To top it off, I poured on some of them some sugary-lemony goodness which only enhanced the tang of the lemon. Not only do they taste delish, they smell beautiful too! When the oven went ting. and I saw those gorgeous cracks on top of these balls of off-white, lemony goodness, I swear I fell in love.

So invoke the sweet smell of lemongrass and listen to this wonderfully relaxing song, Lemon Tree while you take in these savoury visuals. (That's right, indulge all your senses, except your taste buds :P! Order now!)

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Brunch at Nutsy's

I just love weekends. I always carry work home on Friday evenings and promise myself to finish x amount of work by Monday and I always break that promise and do nothing productive instead. And that's what I love about weekends!

Friday evenings are my favourite time to bake. Actually, it's Friday nights...aah, just knowing that I don't need to sleep on time and wake up on time and that I can bake till I drop! Incidentally, I always end up waking up early on Saturdays (never on time on Weekdays :|). Maybe it's because there is no 'pressure to perform' on Saturdays.

Sundays are special too. The mornings and afternoons are as lazy as can be. Breakfast is an important meal that day. So important in fact that I always miss it -- on account of sleeping till late! Which means it's time to brunch!

Last Sunday, I decided to call a couple of my friends over for brunch. I was in the mood to feed, and feed I did indeed. On the menu was:

1. Olive Cheese and Garlic Bruschetta
2. Cinnamon and Caramel Shake
3. Chocolate Marble Cake
4. Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Cookie Crust

Are you drooling yet?

The response was positively positive. They were licking their fingers and trying hard to stay awake.
I also found myself an official Taster! (Criteria for this post mainly consists of a high metabolic rate)

Friday, 2 December 2011

'Sheikh' it Saiyaan

Just because the blog post has that name, doesn't mean I like that song. I don't endorse such music either. But the song title goes well with what I have on my plate today. Before we talk about the dish of the day (actually night), we gotta shake a bit so go to this youtube link and instead of oggling at the women in this video, move your bum and work up an appetite for what follows! Woohooo!

Phew! Now that we're done, I present to you the very wonderful, the very Dubai, the very Saudi Arabic, the very rich and Sheikh-y: Let's Date Cake! Tadaaa!

Is it just me, or is there a Sheikh belly dancing in the background?

So basically, to be quite honest, I don't really like dates. I mean I like to go out on dates (especially when 'he' pays the bill) but I don't like those brown, roach like chewey thingies (Don't you want to eat that cake, now!). The truth of the matter, my friends, is that everything is awesome when you bake it!

Oh! My neighbours are having a party and they just started playing Chammak Challo! Gotta SHAKE, NOW!

Catch you laters, folks! And ya, don't you want to date that cake?

(This post is so full of lame, albeit insightful, jokes.)

Monday, 28 November 2011

I be Masterchef too, pliss

Ladees and the gents, in the oven at this moment is that one dish that will make your life better. Okay, I hope it will! Right at this moment, bubbling and rising like the beautiful Winter sun is a gorgeous loaf of Orange bread. I never knew such a thing existed but god bless the internet for free recipes...ting! That was me, not the oven. Oh happiness!

I wonder what it'll look it will taste. It smells blissful, yes.

Why am I baking at 10 pm? I just finished watching the finale of Masterchef Australia 2011 (Kate won, by the way, doesn't matter really, everyone wins!) And I thought, time to bakety bake bake masterchef style -- boom boom, shake the room :)

Leaving you with a visual of this beauty and I hope it makes you want to reach into the screen and sneak a teeny bitey!

An Apple A day

My quest for a 'healthy' dessert brought me to the Apple Crumble last evening. Now, please. It is NOT such. It has quite a bit of butter, maida and sugar in it. But in its defence, it's YUM.

I am trying to avoid eating it and successfully have but mom's really been at it. She really does love her fruits and veggies (conveniently ignoring the butter and sugar). I also made Banana Walnut Cake and Walnut Cake this weekend (Nov 26-27) -- Yes, there's lots of walnut at home!

I gifted the banana walnut cake to a friend. He says it was great, so yay! Definitely better than the last (and first) attempt at banana bread (phew!). Getting good -- and fast! Yeah, baby! (Hold the phone, Modesty calling!)

Leaving you with this mouth-watering visual of the Apple Crumble. Let's hope my friend clicks a pic of the banana bread before he finishes all of it and I can post it for you guys! Cheers and lowe, lowe, lowe.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

My Experiments With Food - And That's the Sweet Truth!

I have recently taken to feeding people instead of only being fed. I discovered about a month back that i had developed an obsession for baking. Actually,the obsession became a reality only when my mum bought me an oven for Diwali. It cam with a lot of promises: No, I will not bake great stuff and eat it myself or make you eat it. Something would be baked and tasted and quickly disposed off to friends or office colleagues. No calories, please. The other promise was to learn how to bake a whole lot of veggie dishes for mum. I think that's primarily how she got convinced, my vegetable-loving mother.

Well, once the oven arrived, I basically lost my mind. I baked everyday the first week. The first two attempts were disastrous, owing to my usual casual 'I know I'll be great at this' attitude supported by 'Oh, I don't need to follow measurements, I'm a natural' campaign. But after wasting half the ration of the house, I submitted to the internet for recipes (always the faceless internet, never an auntie -- afterall, I have quite an ego!).

It started with a few hiccups, hell, I am still hiccuping but my office colleagues would agree I am getting kind of good at this. Mom hasn't got many baked vegetable dishes yet (that was just the bait to reel her in), I like to focus on desserts! This baking obsession is also keeping me on my toes and I think I will need to join a gym soon :P But more on that, later.

For now, please enjoy my baking evolution in pics. Remember, I am not giving any FREE cooking tips. And I might be willing to take orders!