Lemon Blueberry Mini Loaf Cake

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My all time summer favorite combination is Lemon and Blueberry, and when you combine them in a mini loaf, they are irresistible! While I enjoy baking almost anytime of the day, I usually have sudden morning cravings for freshly baked goodies. And this no fail classic comes to my rescue every time. Its almost like saying that when life gives you lemons, you make these Lemon and Blueberry Mini Loafs.

The burst of freshness from the blueberries and the tang from the lemon, these mini bundles of wowness is not to missed this summer. They are an epitome of summer yumness. Buttery, lemon-y and yummy!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 4 – 5 mini loaf cake)

  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup fresh or frozen blueberries (I used fresh blueberries)
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp whole milk
  • 80 grams jaggery powder or granulated white sugar
  • 60 grams butter, cubed and at room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp heaped baking powder
  • 1/ 2 tbsp lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

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METHOD:

  • Preheat your oven to 170 C for atleast 15 minutes. Butter or spray your mini loaf tins. (I used a mini loaf liner hence didn’t have to butter or spray)
  • In a bowl take the blueberries, 1 tbsp of flour and toss together until bluebrries are all coated with flour and keep aside.
  • In a bowl whisk together whole wheat flour, lemon zest and baking soda and keep aside.
  • In a another bowl take the butter and beat it using a electric beater until soft. Add the jaggery or white sugar and beat it until the mixture is pale and fluffy.
  • Add 1 egg and beat it until just incorporated. add lemon juice and beat it for 10 – 20 seconds.
  • Now add the flour mixture and milk and fold it gently until the mixture is just incorporated.
  • Add the blueberries and fold it gently into the batter.
  • Transfer the batter equally into the baking moulds and bake it for 28 -30 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
  • Once done, let it cool down and then dive in!

Triple Layer Chia Pudding

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Chocolate, Berries and Superfood – mornings just got better and brighter. All of these packed in a jar and I am in seventh heaven. This trip layer breakfast pudding is a reminiscence of my childhood. Of course I didn’t eat chia seeds or even oast as a child, but all the flavours are inspired by when I enjoyed as a child. Mornings has gotten better with this pudding since I can kickstart my day on a healthy note. And definitely brighter since breakfast has become a no-brainer! Concoctions and combinations of whatever is available in the kitchen and you have something absolutely gorgeous to start your day with .

The flavours are inspired by the different milkshakes mum used to make for me and my cousins. I thoroughly enjoyed milkshakes. Thick shakes, loaded with goodness from ice creams – oh so yum! My favourite was mum’s berry shake (which I can assure is the best berry shake in the world) and my brothers loved decadent chocolate shake. Every shake mum served was loaded with drama – some were a treasure trove of all the good things while others had fresh fruits and nuts in it. Life was simple and full of awesomeness.

And now is the time when such fancy things adorn my pantry. Keeping abreast with new food trends and fancy thingsavailable in the supermarket , I try to incorporate some of the good things into my diet. Something which is easy, nutritious and tasty. I enjoy some and I outrightly reject a few after a few attempts. Chia seed puddings are my favourite. This triple layer pudding has a surprise in every bite. The berry layer adds a freshness to the dish, the vanilla-oats layer provides a good break before we dig further into the creamy chocolaty layer full of chia seeds.

Its time to eat right and eat tasty!

RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (For 2 people)

  • 400 ml coconut milk
  • 5  tbsp rolled oats
  • 1 tbsp cacao powder
  • 2 – 2.5 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp  pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup mixed berries
  • 2 – 3tbsp water
  • 1/4 tsp lemon zest
  • 2 1/2 tbsp agave nectar (you can substitute it with honey)
  • 2 tbsp kiwi, chopped
  • 2 tbsp pomegranate arils

METHOD:

  • In a bowl take half of the coconut milk, cacao powder, 1 tbsp agave nectar, chia seeds and whisk until it is lump free and it is evenly mixed. Once done keep aside in the fridge for 15 – 20 minutes.
  • In another bowl, take the reamining coconut milk, vanilla extract, rolled oats and 1/2 tbsp agave nectar and whisk it well and keep aside.
  • Meanwhile take a saucepan on medium heat and put the berries along with remaining agave nectar and water and cook it until it becomes mushy. This takes around 8 – 10 minutes.
  • Allow it to cool to room temparature and mix in the lemon zest and keep aside.
  • In a jar first put the chocolate – chia layer. Then top it with vanilla-oats layer. Finally put a generous layer of berry compote.
  • Cover the lid of the jar and allow it to set in the refriegrator overnight.
  • Take it out of the fridge around 5 – 10 minutes before consuming it. Garnish it with fresh fruits of your choice and enjoy!

 

Chia Seed Pudding With Poached Cherries and Grilled Peach

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Finally jumped into the chia seed pudding bandwagon. A great morning workout and a delicious yet healthy breakfast makes me feel kind of excited and pumped up to kick start my day. Eating a healthy breakfast bug has bitten me majorly. And what better than a chia seed pudding with seasonal fruits. These magical little seeds are full of goodness and loads of nutrition. Grilled peaches and red ruby like cherries are stunning additions to the dish, isn’t it?

This chilled pudding is creamy and scrumptious. The almond milk lends a nutty dreamy creamy texture to whole dish. While the grilled peaches adds warmth to the dish, the poached cherries lends the sweetness and tartness to the entire pudding. The dish completely reflects the summer season and tastes absolutely gorgeous. I adore this pudding not only because its healthy but also because you can make it over the weekend and enjoy it for a few days. And yes, the plumped chia seeds soaked in almond milk reminds me of the chilled sago milk pudding my mum used to make during summer vacations.

There are umpteen flavor combinations with which one can play around and broaden your repository of beautiful breakfast chia seed puddings. The plethora of colors from the fruits looks like you are painting your canvas.

So, just when you were thinking about how to eat a healthy and yummy breakfast, we have this pudding for you!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (For 1 – 2 people)

For the pudding:

  • 200 ml unsweetened almond milk
  • 90 grams plain Greek Yogurt (I used Epigamia Greek Yoghurt)
  • 3 tbsp black Chia seeds
  • 1/2 tbsp agave nectar ( you can use honey or maple syrup) (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

For the poached cherries and grilled peaches:

  • 10 – 12 pieces of red cherries
  • 1 medium sized peach, cut lengthwise
  • 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 tbsp agave nectar
  • 1/4 lemon zest
  • 4 tbsp water

For garnishing:

  • few dried berries
  • unsalted pistachios, coarsely crushed
  • edible flowers (optional)

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RECIPE:

For the pudding:

  • In a bowl whisk Greek Yoghurt and almond milk until the yogurt is well incorporated.
  • Now add vanilla extract and chia seed and whisk well. Make sure there are no Chia seed lumps.
  • Transfer the mixture in to a container and set it in the fridge to set overnight or atleast 6 – 8 hours.

For the poached cherries and grilled peaches:

  • In a saucepan take fresh cherries, water, lemon zest and 1/2 tbsp agave nectar let the mixture boil on medium heat until the cherries are soft.
  • Once done let the mixture cool down to room temperature.
  • Meanwhile take a bowl and whisk melted butter, remaining agave nectar, cinnamon powder.
  • Take the cut peaches and marinate them in the mixture.
  • Put the grill pan on stove on medium heat. Once its hot put the marinated peaches on it and allow them to grill. This would take about 40 seconds to a minute.
  • Remove it from the heat and keep aside.

To assemble:

  • Take the chia seed pudding in a container in which it was set overnight. Place the grilled peaches and poached cherries on top of it.
  • Garnish with dried berries, crushed pistachios and edible flowers.

Dig in and have a healthy morning!

 

 

Summer Berries in Jelly

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Even when the sun is glaring and the mercury is rising, desserts are something that everyone seems to enjoy. And what better way to enjoy than the refreshing and juicy berries in this summer. Berries in Jelly is a fancy looking dessert which is sure to win hearts. Its light and perfect after meal indulgence.

Being an ardent fan of Masterchef, I got the inspiration for this dessert from one of the episodes from the latest season of Masterchef Australia. With fresh berries readily available in the stores in San Francisco, I had to try my hands in it. Be generous in adding the berries in the dessert. If fresh berries are not available, you can use the frozen ones too. The berries bursting in your mouth is quite invigorating. The colors of the dessert is inviting and the flavor is fantastic. Set it in individual moulds, wine glasses, little tea cups or in a terrine, this dessert is a super easy and a definite stunner.

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (For 3 – 4  people)

  • 1/2 cup blueberries
  • 3/4 cup strawberries, halved
  • 1/3 cup blackberries
  • 1/3 cup raspberries
  • 4 gelatin leaves
  • 3 tbsp castor sugar
  • 450 ml Prosecco
  • Few mint leaves, for garnish (optional)
  • Chantilly cream, for garnish (optional)

For non-alcoholic version you can also use the Strawberry jelly packets available in the stores and make it as per the directions given on it. Avoid using the gelatin, castor sugar and Prosecco mentioned in the recipe above.

METHOD:

  • Soak the gelatin leaves in cold water until its soft.
  • Meanwhile mix the berries in a bowl and set aside. Place the berries in the mould in which you will set the jelly, filling it about 3/4th its capacity. Keep it in the fridge to chill.
  • Once the gelatin leaves are soft, shake off the excess water and place it in a bowl with hot water and sugar. Stir to dissolve. Make sure that the water is not boiling.
  • Once the above gelatin mixture is cooled to room temperature, add Prosecco to it. Pour this mixture into the moulds with the fruits.
  • Allow it to set for 6 – 8 hours or until finely set.
  • Before serving, place the moulds in a container with hot water so that the contents unmould easily.
  • Serve it with chantilly cream and topped with few mint leaves.

If you are using the Strawberry Jelly packets then make the jelly mixture as per the instructions given in the packet. While doing so keep the berries in the fridge to chill in the mould you are going to set the jelly in.Once your mixture is ready pour it in the mould with the berries in it and allow it to set until firm. Unmould it and serve with chantilly cream and mint leaves.

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Enjoy!

Fresh Fruit Tart

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With the freshest and yummiest berries available in the grocery stores, the first thing hat comes to my mind is fresh fruit tart. This dessert celebrates the sweetness of the vanilla pastry cream along with the tanginess from the berries.

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I’ve tried a lot of fruit tarts from different bakeries. What disappointed me is the strong (not great) flavor of the frozen fruits which lingered on my palate, giving me a rather uncanny feeling. It was then I decided to make a fresh fruit tart at home to enjoy the beautiful flavors it has. You can throw some fresh fruits into the tart and serve it to your friends and family. Easy work and immense pleasure from this sweet delight! A must try recipe during the winters.

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (For 6 – 8 people)

For Tart/Pastry Crust:

  • 200 gms all purpose flour
  • 113 gms room temperature unsalted butter
  • 55 gms granulated white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/8 tsp salt (if you are using salted butter then avoid salt)

For Pastry Cream:

  • Please follow the recipe given on the blog. The link is: https://plateandpalateblog.wordpress.com/2015/11/23/vanilla-pastry-cream-creme-patisserie/

For Glaze:

  • 1/3 cup raspberry jam or preserve (preferably without seeds)
  • 2 tbsp water

For Toppings:

  •  2 – 3 cups of fresh berries like blackberry, blueberry, raspberry and strawberry (you may decide the proportions on what you like more).

 

METHOD:

  • Take butter  in an an electric beater/mixer and beat until its soft. Then add sugar and beat until its light and fluffy.
  • Lightly beat the egg in a bowl using a fork. Add this beaten egg to the butter-sugar mixture. Beat it until its incorporated.
  • Add flour and salt to the above mixture and mix it/fold it until its forms a ball.
  • Form a disc of the mixture, cling film it and refrigerate it for 30 minutes atleast. (You can freeze it for 20 minutes, or until firm.)
  • Butter the tart pan and then dust it with flour. Pat the tart mixture on to the tray (bottom and the sides). Prick it with the fork to prevent it from rising. Cover with plastic and place it in the freezer for 10 – 15 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 210 C for atleast 15 minutes. Bake the tart for 10 minutes at 210 C and then reduce the temperature to 180 C and bake for 15 – 20 minutes, until the curst is lightly brown.
  • Take it out of the oven and cool it completely before filling.
  • In the meanwhile, take the raspberry jam/preserve in a saucepan along with water and heat it. Once heated, turn off the gas and pass the mixture through a strainer to remove any seeds or lumps.
  • Take the tart shell and brush it with a thin layer of raspberry glaze to avoid the shell from getting soggy. Allow it to dry for 10 – 15 minutes.
  • Then put the vanilla pastry creme (cremé patisserie) on the tart shell. Put the assorted berries on top of the vanilla pastry cream. You can arrange it randomly or in any particular design you like.
  • Apply the raspberry glaze on top of the berries to give it a shiny look.
  • Serve it immediately or refrigerate it and then bring to room temperature before serving it.

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NOTE:

  • You can create small tarts and make individual tart for your guests.

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Enjoy the season of berries!