It’s been a while since I’ve blogged, but I was busy in the final stages of wedding planning followed by wedding and honeymoon.
One of the traditional parts of Indian weddings is when the bride returns after the wedding to the groom’s parents’ home, she cooks a sweet dish for the family. I made suji halwa, a semolina based sweet dish where the grain is mixed with ghee and then a sugar syrup and has a polenta-like texture. I added nuts and raisins to the dish.
I was a little nervous to make this dish because I don’t usually make Indian desserts…I had my mom text me a recipe and snuck a look at my phone before going to my mother-in-law’s kitchen…
It turned out very very rich. Good. But very very rich. Though I guess that’s the way it’s supposed to be!
After mixing a small batch of cupcakes adapted from The Dollhouse Bakeshoppe, I grazed a plate on my dish rack with the filled muffin tin… Of course my Corning shattered all over my kitchen floor. Which, in my tiny apartment, means my kitchen, living room, bedroom and bathroom floors…leaving me with 3 plates. And no one has bought the dishes on my wedding registry yet! (There’s still a few months left for that 🙂 )
But anyway, the cupcakes were moist, with a hint of coffee flavor, sweet but not too sweet…over all, worth the broken dish. Opa! ( yes, for the duration of this post, I am channeling the Greek)
For my birthday, one of my bffs got me a Wilton cookie press. And, while MTT is not a picky eater and is usually easy to please, he doesn’t have the biggest sweet tooth. One of the few desserts he enjoys is cookies. So I thought that the cookie press would be a way to make a fun dessert that MTT would like.
Oh my god, it wasn’t worth the aggravation.
First, I couldn’t make the cookie press work. The box is..shall we say…succinct in its guidance. “One click is one cookie!” it promises. Not exactly. It took MTT and me about 15 minutes to figure out how to make the clicked cookie detach itself from the cookie press and attach itself to my cookie sheet.
Finally, when that ordeal was overcome, we couldn’t disassemble it for cleaning purposes. The shaft of the cookie press wouldn’t come unscrewed from the handle! Now, it’s impossible to clean. MTT said “F-it, just throw it away!”
The cookies themselves are ok…light and airy with a very subtle flavor. Didn’t exactly satisfy my dessert craving…and didn’t justify the effort in my opinion. Maybe I just need to get more experienced with the cookie press…maybe I just need to stick to my other cookie recipes.
I should be more prepared for MTT’s random requests for dessert. I don’t make dessert everyday, and he doesn’t have a huge sweet tooth, but there are days he just feels like a sugary end to dinner (usually when dinner is especially good, I think)….
Today I made classic Indian keema (ground meat). I didn’t photograph it for a blog post, but I should have…it’s a favorite in this household so I know I will have another opportunity soon.
After dinner MTT said “I feel like dessert today”. Usually I love the opportunity to bake but sometimes I’m totally caught off guard with only basic ingredients on hand.
I decided to make a basic sugar cookie but flavor it with a pudding mix I had on hand.
The result was a soft cookie, crispy on the outside but soft and dough-y on the inside…when eaten warm from the oven they provided a sweet and filling end to a yummy traditional Indian dinner.
My mom had given me some nectarines long ago, and now they were sticky-sweet ripe and ready to consume….however I just didn’t feel like eating them au natural…especially not 5 of them! So I sliced them up and put them on top of a yellow cake mix batter…during the cooking process they sank to the middle of the cake and kept the middle of the cake in a super-soft, barely-baked state that at first I was undecided on…but when MTT said he loved it, I decided I did too. I’m highly suggestible, especially when it comes to MTT’s opinion 🙂
MTT has a big test that he is studying for so I’ve been thinking of making a special dessert for him. His favorite thus far has been cheesecake. However, I am short on fridge space so I opted for something more fresh and summery…that does not need to be cooled in the fridge 🙂
I wanted to make something easy but fun…I am not a purist in that I am ok with using cake mix as a base and actually think that yellow cake mix is fantastic for recipes…and I’m not good at making frosting from scratch, unless it’s cream cheese…so I used a canned frosting base as well.
Lemon-Coconut Cupcakes use both cake mix and canned frosting, but modify each enough to make me feel like I’m really making the dessert home-made.
Yellow Cake Mix and all the ingredients it calls for (3 eggs, 1/3 cup oil and 1 cup water)
1 can whipped white frosting
Sweetened coconut flakes
Start by toasting the coconut
I do this on a cookie sheet at 350 for 5-10 minutes until just some flakes are browned
Mix cake mix with the zest of 2 lemons and juice of 1/2 a lemon
Add the rest of cake mix ingredients and beat per box directions
Fill cupcake tin as per usual 🙂
Bake per box directions
Mix frosting with 1/2 tsp coconut extract
Cool cupcakes and then frost.
Dip frosted cupcakes in toasted coconut topping and enjoy!
MTT enjoyed these a lot…claims he likes it even better than cheesecake! But, he rightfully remarks that this may not store as well as cheesecake over several days…I guess he better start eating!!!
I worked all day today, but while I was working MTT was good enough to go to the grocery store and buy some staples…like milk. As a reward, I decided to make some fresh-baked dessert.
I promptly offered to make graham cracker muffins…a quick and easy breakfast/dessert that doesn’t require a lot of ingredients…not even flour…but it does need some (unexpired) milk 🙂
I whipped up a batch as we watched Olympic track and field heats, marveling at Bolt’s speed learned all about the triple jump…which I have to say is strange the first time you watch it…. “the walking wounded” according to the commentators.
Anyway, by the time the fastest man on earth finished his heats, we were eating muffins. As I turned to MTT and asked him how he liked them, he managed to get out between bites “warm goodness”