Thursday, December 13, 2007

Cheats version of Molten chocolate cake

This is a very easy desert. It hardly takes any time to prepare or bake. You can also make it a day ahead and keep it in the refrigerator. All you need is to reheat it in the microwave for 15 – 30 seconds before serving. When you take a bite, the hot melting chocolate in the mouth is heaven. And then another scoop and you're surprised by the melting milk chocolate oozing out. You will never fail to impress anyone with this easy dessert. This is a chocolate lover's paradise.

  • 113g/1 stick unsalted butter
  • 113g/1 bar semi sweet chocolate (I use Ghiradelli)
  • 1 bar milk chocolate (I use Ghiradelli)
  • 3 eggs
  • 85 grams sugar
  • 50 grams flour

Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Butter and flour
6 ramekins (or spray it with PAM for Baking). Melt butter and chocolate in a microwave for 1 minute. Stir and keep aside.

Beat eggs and sugar, for 5 minutes or so,
till it leaves a trail. Add the flour and melted chocolate and mix well. Divide the mixture in the ramekins.

Break the milk chocolate bars, and push one or two milk chocolate pieces in each of the ramekins. Bake the cake for exactly 12 minutes. Cool the cake.

You can make this cake a day ahead and heat each ramekins for 15-30 seconds in the microwave. Run a spatula around the sides of the ramekins and unmold the cake. Serve it with few fresh strawberries or vanilla ice cream or just as it is. This is surely my comfort food.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Kissables Cookies

I first started baking when we lived in Sydney. Until then, I had no idea how to bake or even how to SWITCH ON an oven. I was somehow intimidated by the oven, maybe because when I grew in India, we didn’t have one. At home, cakes were made on stove tops, in a pot. I have come a long way from the first time I baked. 

Now, I love baking and try out different cookies, cakes, puddings etc. I have also started to alter some recipes to include ingredients I like or have in my pantry. These cookies are colorful and festive and are also a fun party treat. My 4 year old loves helping out when I bake, and today when I baked these cookies with Hershey’s kissable she was just too thrilled and couldn’t wait to eat them once they were baked. You can alter the Kissables with M&M’s.

  • 100g/4oz unsalted butter, softened.
  • 100g/4oz light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 150g/6oz self–rising flour
  • 85g/3oz Hershey’s Kissables (see note)

Heat oven to 180Cfan/350F. Beat butter and sugar together till light and creamy. Add the honey. Stir in the flour and mix till incorporated. Stir in the kissables. Divide the dough to 12-14 balls onto the baking sheet, don't flatten them. Bake for 10 -12 minutes until pale and golden at the edges. Cool on wire rack.

Note: I made this recipe with Hershey's kissables (as you can see in the pictures they are the ones with the color coating on them), but I found that the cookies were a bit salty for some reason, you could replace the kissables with chocolate chip or m&m's.  

Monday, December 10, 2007

Pistachio Chicken

This recipe is a sure hit when you have guest, especially those not used to Indian food. It has a lovely creamy texture and nutty flavor from the pistachios. It is mild (but can be hot if you want it to). It doesn’t have any onions, so there is little chopping to do. It also has a lovely green color that you don’t usually find in Indian curries.

  • 1-cup shelled pistachios
  • 4-5 green chilies (or more)
  • 1 bunch of coriander
  • 1-cup yogurt
  • 1-pound chicken breast
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tomato chopped
  • Few sprigs of coriander


Clean and cut the chicken to about 2” pieces. Marinate the chicken with the beaten yogurt, turmeric powder and garam masala and salt. Let it stand for 1-2 hours.

In the mean time, soak the pistachios in some hot water for ½ hour or so. Peel the skin of the pistachios and grind it with coriander and chilies.
In a pot, cook the marinated chicken with the marinade till the chicken is cooked. There will be some water coming out from the yogurt and it will look like curdled milk. Once the chicken is cooked, add the ground pistachio mixture to the chicken, mix it well. Simmer for 10 – 15 minutes on a low flame. Adjust the seasoning.

Garnish with chopped tomatoes and coriander. Serve hot with roti or parathas.

Thursday, December 6, 2007


I grew up in Bombay (Mumbai). The best part of living in Bombay was having neighbors from all over India. On each festival, we would get different dishes from our neighbors. On Christmas, it would be the goodies made of marzipan, on Eid it would be Chicken or Mutton Biryani along with Sheerkurma. On Diwali, it was ladoos or pedas made of milk and ghee, to name a few.

The Bori would make Khichada for their special occasions. I grew up eating it in my Bori friend's house and I absolutely love this dish. It is a rich dish, very similar to the Pakistani Haleem. It is made with wheat, different lentils, rice and meat. This dish is believed to have originated in Iran and Afghanistan and brought to India by the Mughals. I guess the name Khichada must have come from Khichidi (a mix of everything).


  • 1 ½ cup wheat
  • 2 tablespoons Toor dal/split pigeon peas
  • 2 tablespoons Urad dal/
  • 2 tablespoons Chana dal/yellow split chickpea
  • 2 tablespoons Moong dal/Mung beans
  • 2 tablespoons Masoor dal/red lentils
  • 2 tablespoons rice
  • 2” ginger
  • 4 – 5 cloves garlic
  • 450 grams Llmb
  • 1 big onion sliced
  • 1 big onion sliced and fried (birista)
  • 3-4 green chilies (or more for added heat)
  • Ginger garlic paste
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon red chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons coriander powder or Shan Haleem masala mix
  • ¾ teaspoon garam masala
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • Salt to taste

For tempering
  • 1 – 2 teaspoons oil
  • 1 teaspoon jeera/cumin
  • ½ teaspoon Turmeric powder
  • 2 -3 cloves chopped garlic

  • Few sprigs of fresh mint and some lemon juice.


Wash and soak the wheat, lentils and rice in water overnight. In a pressure cooker or a heavy based pot cook the wheat, lentils and rice with a teaspoon of oil, ginger and 2 -3 cloves of garlic till soft about 8-9 whistles. Let it cool. Grind this mixture in batches in the blender with a little water. Keep aside.

In another pressure cooker or pot, heat the remaining oil and sauté one big onion and green chilies till they are translucent about 4-5 minutes. Add the lamb and turmeric, chili, coriander powder and garam masala (alternatively, you can add the Haleem mix in which case there is no need to add turmeric, chili, coriander and garam masalas). Add salt to taste and add 1-½ cups of water and cook till the lamb is tender around 4-5 whistles on high flame and 3-4 whistles on low flame. Mix the lamb mixture with the ground wheat. If the mixture is too thick add a bit of water and let it heat and blend for a few minutes.


In a vessel, heat the oil lower the flame and add the cumin seeds. When they sizzle, add the chopped garlic and turmeric powder. Add this to the khichada. Garnish the dish with fried onions, fresh mint leaves, lemon juice and a teaspoon of oil (if you are not dieting). Serve hot.