Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Prune Walnut Bread

Whenever I have 4-5 days break between my exams, I think that I have still plenty of time to cover the whole course for couple of days. Then on the third or fourth day, I realize then it's too late now. Once I feel the pressure, only then I utilize my time efficiently for last couple of days.
Now you will think what all these have to do with Prune bread??!! Well, same thing happens with me regarding event submission on blogosphere. I saw the BBD (aka Bread Baking Day) event hosted by Mansi and decided to bake something. I got time at last to bake this bread before couple of days and post the recipe today only!!
Coming to the recipe, I saw several prune bread recipes online and did some modifications as per my taste. Prune has a really good amount of vitamin A, dietary fiber and potassium. Go here and get some more information about prunes. 

1 cup roughly chopped pitted prunes
2/3 cup chopped walnuts
3/4 cup prune juice
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoon butter
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/3 cup apple sauce
3/4 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 325 degree F

Take one saucepan with water and put on the stove with medium heat. When water starts boiling, add prune juice. Bring to a boil and then remove from heat. Then add prune and butter. Stir couple of times and let it cool till luke warm.

Take one bowl and combine apple sauce with sugar in it. beat till light fluffy mixture forms. Then add both flours, baking soda, baking powder and vanilla extract. Add prune mixture and walnuts. Stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. Transfer the mixture into 9x5 inch loaf pan and level the mixture with spatula.

Bake for around 50 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Let it cool in the loaf pan for 10 minutes and then remove.

I used half WW pastry flour and APF. You can use only APF also.

Similarly instead of apple sauce, you can use 1 egg also.

I hope Mansi would like this quick prune walnut bread. Sending this off to her for BBD event.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Gnocchi with marinara and alfredo sauce

Gnocchi is the Italian small dumpling or noodle, normally made of potato, flour or semolina. I tasted combination of marinara and alfredo sauce with gnocchi at one local Italian restaurant. It became my favourite dish from that place from very first bite. For me, alfredo is too heavy and marinara is sometimes just tomato sauce. But combination of both makes wonderful taste along with gnocchi. 
Another reason of trying same recipe at home, because I found tri color gnocchi in grocery store before few days. Tri color gnocchi has goodness of tomato and spinach both.

1 lb tri color gnocchi

For marinara
4 tomatoes
1 onion chopped
2-3 garlic cloves minced
2 tsp olive oil

For alfredo
4 tablespoon parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream
3 tablespoon whole milk
1 tablespoon butter

dry or fresh basil flaks
dry oregano
2 tsp black/white pepper powder
salt as per taste

Boil the gnocchi in salted water as per instruction on packet. Drain the gnocchi and add some olive oil.

Boil the tomatoes for 4-5 minutes in water. Drain the tomatoes and keep them aside. Heat 2 tsp of olive oil in one pan. When oil is heated, add chopped onion and minced garlic. Cook till onion become translucent. Let onion and garlic mixture cool. Then make smooth puree of tomato and onion garlic mixture.

In the same pan heat butter. When butter is melted, add tomato puree. Add oregano, pepper and salt. Let it simmer for 3-4 minutes. Take cheese, heavy whipping cream and whole milk in one bowl and whisk well. Lower the flame and then add cheese mixture. Simmer for 2 minutes.

At last add cooked gnocchi and again simmer for couple of minutes.

Garnish with basil and serve hot!!!

Normally alfredo sauce is made with butter, ricotta cheese and heavy whipping cream. I used just 1 tablespoon of whipping cream and add some whole milk. If you don't worry about all those calories, go ahead use only heavy whipping cream. 

Normally white pepper is used in alfredo but I had only black pepper. So I just used whatever was available.

You can make this dish with regular gnocchi also. It  will not alter the taste at all.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Eggless orange almond cake

I am still not confident about my baking skills. But still I did experiments few times. This egg less orange almond cake is from one of such successful experiments. I use recipe from tarla dalal as basic recipe and made some changes as per my taste buds. 

1-1/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup powdered almond
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter softened
1/4 cup apple sauce
1/3 cup orange juice
2 tablespoon grated orange zest
1/3 cup curd

Preheat oven to 350 degree F
Mix softened butter and orange zest in one bowl. Add sugar and mix till the mixture is light and fluffy. Then add apple sauce and again beat well. Then add all dry ingredients like whole wheat pastry flour,baking powder, baking soda and powdered almond. Again mix everything well.

Then add beaten fresh curd. At last add orange juice in batches. Increase or decrease the amount of juice as per the consistency needed.

Pour the mixture in greased cake pan. Bake for 40 minutes or till done.

You can use all purpose flour also. The use of whole wheat pastry flour makes the cake more dense.
Instead of apple sauce, you can use 1 egg also.

You can increase or decrease the amount of sugar as per your sweet tooth. I also recommend to taste the orange juice and decide the amount of sugar as per juice's sourness.

I use freshly squeezed orange juice, and I think it real makes the difference in the taste.

I love the taste of orange zest, so I added 2 tablespoon, because I think that it adds nice little punch in the cake. You can reduce it to 1 tablespoon, without altering the taste.

Event Submissions
This cake is on its way to tasty treat's lets go nuts with almond event, Recipe Center's Recipes for rest of us - Picnic Eats event originally started by Ramki of one page cookbook and JFI - wheat hosted by Roma's space.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Ghughara/Gujiya with a Twist

Happy Holi to all!!! Finally I am out of my so called vacation mood after coming back from India trip. I wanted to make traditional holi sweet gujiya. I gave the twist to traditional recipe, because of the two reasons. The first one was to make gujiya healthy. The second reason was that I don't get ready made mavo/khoya here. I had some coconut in my freezer, so I make the filling which is normally use in modak. So here you go with the modak filling baked gujiya/ghughara...

For cover
3/4 cup maida/all purpose flour
1 to 2 tsp ghee or melted butter
luke warm water or milk
flour for dusting

For filling
3/4 cup jaggery/gud
1 cup fresh shredded coconut
1 tsp ghee
1 tsp cardamom powder

For cover
Take all the ingredients except milk, in one bowl. Knead the soft pliable dough using luke warm water or milk. Cover it and keep aside for some time.

For filling
Put the pan with ghee on medium flame. First add jaggery and when it is melted, add coconut. Cook till the mixture comes together. Add cardamom powder in the end and keep aside.

Divide the dough into 9 to 10 equal parts. Then roll them into round shape of around 3 to 4 inch diameter. Put the filling mixture on one side and then seal it using your wet fingers. Repeat the procedure with all the parts of the dough.

Preheat the oven to 375 degree F. Arrange all the gujiyas in baking tray. Bake them until both the sides are light brown.

Alternatively, you can fry them also.

There was change in taste because of baking.  If you want authenticate taste, fry them.

Event Submission
This baked  gujiyas are on their way for Purva's Holi event.