Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Orange Cookies

Welcome back after another long break!!! Seems like I have become too lazy these days!! I had uploaded pics for this recipe immediately after I came to know about Srilekha's Cookie Event, but then I thought I had enough time and needn't have to rush. Now the last date of sending is tomorrow, so, here I am with the recipe :).
Usually when it comes to having/making cookies, I stick with chocolate and chocolate chips (This is true for icecreams, cakes or any kind of desserts :) ). But when I saw the snap of these cookies in my cookbook, I really had to give this a try! The aroma of the batter is so refreshing and taste is just awesome!! Brown sugar and cream cheese make these cookies really moist and chewy. I was happiest when my niece asked me if I would be bringing these again the next time I visit her :)). Do make these once and I am sure you'll be making them again and again...
1 cup butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup cream cheese (I used reduced-fat)
1 egg, lightly beaten (I used eggwhites only)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp orange juice
1 tsp finely grated orange rind, plus extra for decorating
raw brown sugar (for sprinkling)

  • Preheat the oven to 375 F. Grease a baking sheet with oil spray.
  • Put the butter, sugar and cream cheese in a large bowl and beat until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg.
  • Sift in the flour and baking soda. Add orange juice and rind and mix well.
  • Drop about 25 rounded tablespoonfuls of the batter onto the baking sheet and make sure they are well spaced.
  • Sprinkle with raw brown sugar and bake in the oven for 10 minutes, or until the cookies are light brown at the edges.
  • Let cool and decorate with orange rind before serving.
After the successful attempt of the orange cookies, I decided to become innovative and tried mango-coconut cookies. ( I used mango juice instead of orange juice and used shredded coconut in place of orange rind). These were not as delicious as the orange ones :(, but they were still tasty.

I am sending my yummy orange cookies to Srilekha's cookie event.


Thursday, March 26, 2009

Nutty Beet Salad

Ever since FIC-pink/rose has been announced by Priya, so many bloggers have posted recipes with beet as a main ingredient. I thought I should also join them :). Here is a mouthwatering recipe that I found in my latest recipe book with slight modifications of my own.

1 1/2 cooked beet (grated)
1 1/2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 apple (I used gala)
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 large handfuls of mixed salad greens
2 tbsp pecan halves (toasted)


2 tbsp non-fat yogurt
2 tbsp reduced-fat mayonnaise
1 garlic clove (chopped)
2 tsp fresh dill (chopped)
salt and pepper as needed

  • Put the beet in a non-metallic dish and sprinkle with vinegar. Cover with a plastic wrap and let chill in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours.
  • To make the dressing, combine all the ingredients in a small bowl.
  • Core and slice the apple. Sprinkle with lemon juice to prevent discoloration.
  • Remove beet from the refrigerator and drizzle dressing over it. Add the apples and mix gently to coat with the dressing.
  • To serve, arrange a handful of salad greens on each plate and top with a large spoonful of the apple and beet mixture.
  • Sprinkle the toasted nuts over the salad and serve immediately.
I would like to send this salad over to Priya's FIC-pink/rose (Food in Color) Event which was started by SunshineMom.


Sunday, March 15, 2009

Sangria (Non-alcoholic) and Loads of Awards :)

On our visit to a spanish restaurant to celebrate our 2nd wedding anniversary, we first time tried Sangria. Sangria, which means bloody in spanish, is a wine punch. Both Nisarg and I don't take alcohol, so we asked for a non-alcoholic version and what they served was so yummy!!
Here is a recipe that is adapted from Giada's Italian Cooking that I tried some time ago. It was so delicious, we just drank our dinner that day :).

1/2 cup orange juice
2 cups mint syrup (recipe follows)
1 lemon (zested and thinly sliced)
1 lime (zested and thinly sliced)
1 cup sliced strawberries, grapes, raspeberries
4-5 fresh mint sprigs
1 can Sprite (I used Sprite Zero)
water (to adjust sweetness)
crushed ice

Mint Syrup:

2 cups sugar
2 cups water
1 cup packed fresh mint leaves

  • For the mint syrup, in a saucepan, combine sugar, water and mint over medium heat.
  • Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes, until the sugar has dissolved. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the syrup to cool for 20 minutes.
  • Strain before using and keep aside.
  • In a large bowl or pitcher, combine all the ingredients. Fill tall glasses with crushed ice and pour sangria over the top.

I would like to send this lovely sangria to Priya's FIC-Pink event which was started by SunshineMom.

FIC - Pink or Rose

Now awards time!!!
To start with, Madhavi and Purva passed this lovely award to me. Thank you so much guys:).


This award states that-These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement(? big word, lol). Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of their award.

I would like to pass this beautiful award to Gopi, Srilekha, Usha, Mansi, Yasmeen, Gunjan, DK and Trupti.

Purva and Vibaas have showered me with so many wonderful awards. I am so giddy with excitement!!
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Two more awards from Purva!! Thank you so much dear for making me feel so special:)


Vibaas also sent me blogging with a purpose award. Thanks once again!!


I would like to pass this bundle of awards to Sia, Madhavi, Gopi, Yasmeen, Trupti, Anudivya, Bindiya, Usha, Mansi, DK and Homecooked.


Wednesday, March 4, 2009

French Onion Soup

Everytime I visit a book shop  (which is on average, twice a week :) ), I grab a table near the shop cafe with various cooking books and just enjoy going through all the delicious pictures of food!! I usually try to resist buying them mainly because of lack of space in my already full cook-book drawer, but, few weeks ago, I came across this wonderful book that I had to buy!!
The pictures are so beautiful, I just can't wait to try my hands at all these yet to be tasted dishes.
With the weather here being super-cold, I thought that soup would be the best dish to try out from my new book and this lovely combination of onions, french bread and gruyere cheese turned out to be perfect for a cold stormy evening.

2 large yellow onions
1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
4 garlic cloves (3 chopped and 1 whole)
1 tsp fresh thyme (chopped) plus some sprigs for garnishing
1 tbsp all-purpose flour
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/2 tsp sugar
4 1/2 cups vegetable stock
6 slices french bread
1/4 cup gruyere cheese (grated) 
salt and pepper as needed

  • Thinly slice the onions. Heat oil in a pan over medium heat, add the onions and cook for 10 minutes, or until they are just beginning to turn brown.
  • Add chopped garlic, sugar and thyme. Reduce the heat and cook, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes, or until the onions are golden brown. 
  • Sprinkle the flour and mix properly. Cook for 1-2 minutes. Stir in the wine. Gradually add the stock and bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper.
  • Reduce the heat and let simmer for 50 minutes. 
  • Meanwhile, toast the bread slices on both sides. Rub the toasts with the whole garlic clove.
  • Preheat the broiler.
  • Pour the soup into oven-proof bowl. Float toast slices into it and sprinkle with cheese. Place under the broiler for 1-2 minutes, or until the cheese has just melted.
  • Pour into individual bowl, garnish with thyme sprigs and serve.

I'd like to send this over to DK's Culinary Bazaar for A.W.E.D. France Event.


Monday, March 2, 2009

Tres Leches Cake

Hello Everyone, Welcome back to my blog after a really long break!! I was in India for about a month, visiting my family and friends, and after coming back, was still in the holiday mood!! 
We had 'tres leches-three milk cake' at a lovely restaurant called 'la tusca' during our trip to washington dc. Nisarg had loved it so much at that time, that I was looking for a tried-&-tasted recipe of it since then. Recently, I got the recipe from a friend and immediately tried it out. It turned out so perfect!! Thank you so much Viji for this lovely recipe:).

1 stick unsalted butter (at room temp.)
4 large eggs
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 can(14 oz) sweet condensed milk (I used fat-free)
1 can(12 oz) evaporated milk (I used fat-free)
1 cup 2% milk

1 cup heavy whipping cream + 1 tbsp sugar for a creamy layer on top (optional)
mixed fruits (optional)

  • Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease a 9 inch by 9 inch baking dish and set aside. 
  • Sift flour and baking powder together.
  • Beat egg-whites till they are fluffy and create a soft peak. Add vanilla extract and add egg-yolks one at a time. Beat well after the addition of each egg-yolk.
  • In a separate bowl, beat softened butter till its fluffy. Add sugar and thoroughly combine.
  • Now, mix the sugar-butter mixture into the egg mixture and beat properly. Add sifted flour and mix thoroughly.
  • Pour the mixture into the baking dish and bake for about 30-35 minutes or until the crust is golden.
  • In a bowl, whisk condensed milk, evaporated milk and 2% milk together. 
  • Let the cake cool completely. Scrape the top layer of the cake and poke the cake all over with a fork. Pour the milk mixture on the cake. Cover and refrigerate the cake overnight.
  • For the icing, beat heavy whipping cream and sugar until soft peaks are formed. Coat the cake with icing and decorate with fruits. (This step is totally optional, both Nisarg and I liked it better without the icing.)