Pressure Cooker Sponge Cake

It was my husband’s birthday, hence I decided to surprise him by baking a cake. It was a special surprise because I had never baked a cake before. When he left for office I started the prep. Everything was set the batter was ready the cake tin was greased and when I switched on my oven to pre heat it…. alas… there you have it. My oven broke down. Something went wrong and I was not able to adjust its setting. I tried a lot but of no use.

For a moment I thought, I won’t be able to bake the cake. But, then I told myself that it’s a test of my love and I shall not fail; no matter what, I will bake this cake. Hahaha…  I know the last line is a little cheesy 😆. However, I decided to try it in a pressure cooker because I did not want waste my effort of preparing the batter. I was sure that the cake will not be up to the mark, but to my surprise it turned out to be soft and yummilecious.

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Here’s the recipe.

Ingredients

For cake
1 1/2 cups all perpous flour/Maida
1 1/2 cup powered sugar
4 eggs
100 gm butter
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
A pinch of salt

For icing
1 cup whipping cream
1/2 can any juice (I used pineapple juice)
1 tablespoons chocolate chips
1/4 cup glazed cherries
Colourful candies as required

Method

Before you start make sure all the ingredients for cake are at room temperature.

STEP 1 – Sieve flour, baking powder, soda and salt together. Repeat the process a couple of times. This will make the cake lighter.

STEP 2 – In a bowl beat butter until soft now add sugar and beat till you get a foamy consistency.

STEP 3 – Now break eggs in the mixture one by one and keep mixing. Keep beating until the mixture is dense and foamy.

STEP 4 – Mix sieved flour into the egg mixture little by little. Fold it very gently into the mixture. No need to beat it hard. Make sure there are no lumps. If you think the mixture has become too thick then add some heavy cream or milk as required at room temperature. Make sure the batter is not runny.

STEP 5 – Remove the whistle and rubber ring from the lid of your pressure cooker. Close the lid and put the cooker on hight flame to pre heate.

STEP 6 – Put a percolate dish or a stand that fits in your pressure cooker. The idea is to prevent the cake tin from direct contact of heat.

STEP 7 – Grease the cake tin with a little butter and dust with flour so that it is easy to de-mould the cake.

STEP 8 – Pour the cake mixture in the tin. Make sure you only fill 3/4 of the tin and leave some space for the cake to rise.

STEP 9 – Place the tin on the stand in the pressure cooker. Cover the lid and put the flame to the lowest level.

STEP 10 – Wait patiently and enjoy the aroma of cake that will fill your kitchen for around 45 minutes. However, check after 30 minutes. After 45 minutes prick the cake with a toothpick, if it comes out clean that means your cake is ready. If not cover the lid again let it cook for some more time. Usually it takes between 45 minutes to an hour.

STEP 11 – Once the cake is ready switch of the flame and take the cake tin out of the pressure cooker. let it cool for 10 minutes before de-moulding. Usually it comes out easily but if required run a sharp knife around the sides of the tin to separate the cake. Put a plate on top and flip the cake tin. Pat a couple of times and your cake will be in your plate.

STEP 12 – If you wish to put some icing on the cake then you will have to let the cake cool down completely. In the mean while whip the whipping cream till it becomes fluffy. Add chopped cherries (optional).

STEP 13 – When the cake cools down  cut it from the middle and make two halfs. Pour the juice evenly on both the halfs. This will make the cake moist. Put some whipping cream on one half spread evenly. Now put the other half on top of it. Spread the whipping cream evenly all over. And decorate it as you wish.

STEP 14 – Cut the cake into pieces keep the bigger one for yourself 😈. And enjoy the Devine flavor of freshly baked cake.

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Egg Chatkhara

Egg for me is a versatile ingredient. It can be used to make sweet or savory recipes. It can be molded in any shape and can be consumed in different stages like scrambled, semi-solid or hard boiled. It can be flavoured with Italian herbs to Chinese sauce to Indian spices and every time the outcome is as tasty as the other. I bet you all will second me on this. However, along with great taste the humble egg has many nutritional values too. It is a rich source of protein and keeps our heart healthy. I highly recommend it to women during pregnancy and breast feeding.

It was time for some fun and fusion in the kitchen with my all time favorite ingredient eggs. And the result!! A lip smacking, finger licking delicious recipe. You have to try it to believe it.

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Here is how I made it.

Ingredients –

4 eggs
2 medium-sized onions finely chopped
2 medium-sized tomatoes finely chopped
1 green chilli chopped
1 teaspoon red chilli powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
2 tablespoons cashew nut paste
2 tablespoons fresh cream
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1 tablespoons ginger-garlic paste
3 tablespoons oil
1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder
Salt to taste

Method –

Heat two tablespoons oil in a woke and add cumin. When it stars to change colour add onions. Fry until onions are brown. Add ginger-garlic paste and fry for a minute. Now add tomatoes, chilli powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and salt. Fry on medium low flame until all the spices and the tomatoes are cooked and starts to leave sides of the woke. Add green chilli and sauté, add casue nut paste and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add 2 cups of water, garam masala powder, cover and let it boil for 3-4 minutes on low flame. Add cream and let it semer for a minute before turning off the flame.

In a skillet heat some oil. You can also use butter if you like. Now break one egg and gently drop it into the skillet so that the yolk does not leak. Cover and let it cook. Check after a minute if the egg white is cooked from the bottom and the yolk is set, you can flip it and cook it from the other side aswell. However, if you want you can skip cooking it from both the sides. Now remove the fried egg and keep aside. Similarly fry all the 4 eggs.

Now drop the fried eggs in the curry, switch on the flame, cover and let it semer for a minute. Turn off the flame and let it rest for a few minutes before serving.

This Egg Chatkhara tastes best with parathas. However, you can also enjoy it with rice, pulao, nan or roti.

Schezwan Omelette

Hello everyone! I am really sorry for the one year gap but I must tell you,  stealing ME time from your baby’s time is not that easy. Motherhood teaches you a lot of things. However, the most important lesson that you learn is preparing meal within 30 minutes. Schezwan Omelette is one such recipe that you can cook in a jiffy. This was a perfect Sunday brunch that I enjoyed with my family.

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Here is how I prepared it.

Ingredients

3 Eggs
1 Small onion finely chopped
1/4 Cup potato & carrot grated
1/4 cup finely chopped tomato, capsicum and peas
1 Tablespoons schezwan sauce
1 Green chilli finely chopped (optional)
A pinch of crushed black pepper
Salt to taste
1/2 Tablespoon butter
1/2 Tablespoon vegetable oil

Method –

Beat eggs in a bowl. Add schezwan sauce, salt and crushed black pepper.  Beat it once again and keep aside. Heat butter and oil in a pan. Add onion and saute till it becomes translucent. Now add the vegetables along with chilli and cook for a minute. Pour the egg mixture in the pan, cover and let it cook for a couple of minutes on low flame. Lift the lid and flip the omelette, cover again and cook for two minutes. And there you go…  your Schezwan Omelette is ready.
Enjoy it with toast, butter and a hot cup of coffee.
Hope to see you soon with another easy recipe. Till then you let me know how did you like this recipe.

Egg Kadhai

This one originally is my mom’s recipe. She used to make this as a curry (Not a regular egg curry). I just added a little twist to it. However, prepared in which ever form; curry or kadhai, this recipe tastes delicious and is a must try for all egg lovers.

Egg Kadhai

Here is how it is cooked.

Ingredients –
4 eggs
3 tomatoes
1 onion finely chopped
1 green capsicum (bell pepper) diced in cubes
2 teaspoon ginger paste
2 teaspoon garlic paste
1 small piece of cinnamon
2 cloves
1 green cardamoms
2 tablespoon coriander seeds
2 dried Kashmiri red chillies
1 teaspoon dry fenugreek leaves (kasuri methi)
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon red chilli powder
1 tablespoon oil and extra for deep frying
Salt to taste
Ginger juliennes and coriander leaves for garnishing

Method –
Break and beat the eggs in a bowl for 2-3 minutes. Pour the egg mixture in a cake tin or a steamer mould and steam it till the eggs rise and are done. You can check if the eggs are done by pricking it with the help of a toothpick. If the toothpick comes out clean it means eggs are done. Take the eggs out of steamer and de-mould it carefully after cooling for 15-20 minutes. Cut the egg into pieces and shallow fry or deep fry them and keep aside.

For the kadhai masala, dry roast cinnamon, cloves, green cardamoms, coriander and Kashmiri red chillies for around 1 minute on low flame. Turn off the flame and grind the spices coarsely in a grinder.

Heat oil in a pan and add onions. Cook until it turn translucent. Add ginger-garlic paste and red chillies at this stage and sauté for 2 minutes. Add tomatoes and mix well. Cook until they turn soft and oil starts to separate. Add the spice powder and mix well. Now add capsicum and salt and cook for 2-3 minutes. Crush kasuri methi roughly and add to the mixture, now add the fried eggs and mix everything together gently. Stir fry for a couple of minutes and add finely chopped coriander leaves and ginger juliennes and turn off the flame.

Enjoy this delicious egg kadhai with naan or roti. Hope you try and like this recipe. Do write to me. Will see you soon with more recipes, till then happy cooking.

Chicken Kofta

“Where’s the party tonight” asked my brother on a Saturday. I know my brother very well and could read between the lines. I told him if he is yearning for good food then party is at home. And there he was ready with a fresh demand, “what’s new cooking today?” Chicken Kofta was the answer to his question but with an asterisk mark that he will have to help me in kitchen. Needless to say, my brother had to abide by the rules I had set, and we produced a super awesome dish.

chicken-kofta

Here is how we cooked it.

Ingredients –

For koftas
100 – 150 grams of minced chicken
2 cloves of garlic
1 inch piece of ginger
2 green chillies finely chopped
6-8 cashew nuts roughly chopped
5-6 raisins roughly chopped
1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves
A pinch of chatmasala
A pinch of roasted cumin powder
1 teaspoon black pepper powder
2 tablespoon corn flour
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

For Gravy
2 large onions
2 medium tomato
1 teaspoon garlic paste
½ teaspoon ginger paste
1 teaspoon coriander powder
½ teaspoon cumin powder
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon chilli powder (adjust to taste)
½ teaspoon garam masala powder
½ teaspoon cumin seeds
2 bay leaves
3 tablespoon cream, 1 tablespoon extra for garnishing
3 tablespoon oil
Salt to taste

Method –

Kofta
Mix cashew nuts, raisins, coriander, chillies, and a pinch of salt, chatmasala, roasted cumin powder in a bowl and keep this filling mixture aside. In another bowl take chicken mince, add grated ginger and garlic, salt, black pepper and corn flour to it and mix well. Now divide this mixture into equal portions to make lemon size balls. Stuff the cashew nut & raisins mixture in the mince balls and roll to seal the stuffing. Heat sufficient oil in a pan and deep fry the kofta balls on medium heat till it turns brown. Drain on an absorbent paper and keep them aside.

Note: If you have time, let the kofta balls set in refrigerator for 15-20 minutes before frying.

Gravy
Heat one tablespoon oil in a pan and add sliced onions. Sauté till they turn golden brown. Remove from the pan and blend it to make a smooth paste. Deseed tomatoes and blend them to make a paste. Heat two tablespoon oil in a pan, add cumin seeds and bay leaves. Now add onion paste, ginger paste, garlic paste and sauté for a couple of minutes. Add tomato paste and cook for 2-3 minutes, now add turmeric powder, chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and sauté. When the mixture is cooked or when it starts leaving the sides of the pan, add 1 ½ to 2 cups of water (as required for the gravy) salt and garam masala powder. Cover and let it simmer for a couple of minutes on low heat. Add kofta balls to the gravy simmer for 2-3 minutes on low heat. Now add cream and let it cook for another 2 minutes on low heat, and then turn off the flame. Keep it covered for five minutes and then serve.

Garnish with some cream and chopped coriander and serve hot with rice, roti, paratha or naan.

Do let me know in case you have a special request related to ingredients and recipes, I will try to help you out. See you soon with another interesting recipe, till then happy cooking.

Chicken Biryani

Few days back I woke up to see the city drenched by showers. It marked the arrival of monsoon and I decided to celebrate the rain with something exclusive. So, I treated my husband and myself with the very popular recipe of Mughlai cuisine – Biryani, and it was totally worth it.

Chicken Biryani
Here is how I cooked it and treated myself –

Following preparation will serve 4.

Ingredients –
500 gm chicken
1 ½ cup basmati rice
10 green cardamom
20 Black peppercorns
2 Bay leaves
2 Black cardamom
3 Inch stick cinnamon
10 cloves
½ teaspoon caraway seeds
1 tablespoon garlic paste
1 tablespoon ginger paste
5 large onion sliced
1 ½ tablespoon red chilli powder
½ tablespoon turmeric powder
1 cup yogurt
Handful of fresh coriander and mint leaves chopped
4 teaspoon clarified butter (ghee)
2 tablespoon oil
A pinch of saffron mixed in ¼ cup warm milk
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 hard boiled eggs
Salt to taste

Method –
In a deep bottomed pan, heat six cups of water and put washed and drained rice, green cardamoms, bay leaves, 8-black peppercorns, single cinnamon stick, 1 black cardamom, 1 ½ tablespoon salt and 2 tablespoon oil. Cook till it is half done. Drain and set aside.

Heat oil in a wok (kadhai) and deep-fry half of the sliced onions till golden brown. Drain and keep it aside.

For Biryani Masala –
Grind single cinnamon stick, caraway seeds, remaining black peppercorns, remaining green cardamoms and cloves to a powder. This is the biryani masala.

For the Marinade –
Put chicken in a bowl and add garlic paste, ginger paste, salt to taste, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, biryani masala, yogurt, half the fried onions, one tablespoon oil and half of the coriander & mint leaves. Mix it well and allow it to marinate for 2 hours in the refrigerator.

In a pan, heat 2 tablespoon clarified butter (ghee) and put the remaining black cardamom and cinnamon and sauté until it leaves aroma. Now add remaining onions and then sauté until golden brown. Add the marinated chicken in the onion and stir well and cook over high flame for four to five minutes. Check the seasoning and add salt if needed. Put the lid on and lower the flame. Cook until the chicken is done.

For Layering of Biryani –
In a thick bottom pan, heat the leftover clarified butter (ghee) and spread half of the chicken in a layer. Now make a layer of rice over it. Sprinkle chopped mint & coriander leaves, 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Repeat with the layer of leftover chicken and again with leftover rice. Pour saffron milk over it. Cove the lid and let it cook on low flame for 10 minutes. Turn off the flame, but let it be covered for 10 more minutes. Remove the lid, sprinkle remaining fried onions and boiled eggs and serve hot.

Egg Nizami

Did you know? In France, the newly wedded bride breaks an egg on the threshold of her new home before stepping in. According to local belief it is done for good luck and healthy babies.

Egg Nizami
Following preparation will serve 2 or 3.

Ingredients –
4 eggs
2 medium onions blended in fine paste
3-4 tablespoon whipped curd (so that there are no lumps)
½ tablespoon turmeric powder
1 tablespoon red chilli powder (Adjust to taste)
1 tablespoon garlic paste
½ tablespoon ginger paste
2 tablespoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder (zeera powder)
1 teaspoon garam masala powder
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 small bay leaf
3 tablespoon oil
Salt to taste
Chopped coriander to sprinkle

Method –

Heat oil in a thick bottom flat pan and add cumin seeds and bay leaf in the oil. Add onion paste in oil and sauté till it is cooked or till it turns light brown. Now add ginger & garlic paste and sauté for a couple of minutes. Mix coriander powder, turmeric powder and chilli powder with a little water and then add this mixture to the onion paste. When masala is cooked and it starts leaving the sides of the pan, add whipped curd and mix well. Add two cups of water and salt and let it come to a boil.

Now break the shell and gently drop the egg in gravy one at a time. Cover the pan and let the eggs cook in the gravy and absorb all the flavour. Don’t worry if the eggs come out in different size and shapes. In fact that is the beauty of this recipe that all the eggs have a character of their own. Cook the eggs till they are completely done. Add garam masala at the end, mix well, cover and let it boil for a minute and then turn off the flame. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with steam rice, roti or paratha.

Two most important things to remember while cooking this dish –

The consistency of the gravy should be thin. Thick gravy will not yield good result at the end as the eggs need to cook in the gravy itself.

It is important to have a flat bottom pan, so that when you drop the eggs in the gravy, it does not stick to each other and remain separated.