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Dessert for Breakfast ~ Parfait with Mango and Muesli

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Breakfast Parfait ~ Muesli, yogurt and mango

Breakfast Parfait ~ Muesli, yogurt and mango

Give me a hot savoury breakfast each morning and I am a happy camper… but there are the summer (now gone) months to get through when I will eat anything that is below room temperature! I made this simple breakfast parfait, actually just assembled everything because this is a no cook recipe. It was healthy, filling and very yummy. The muesli is also a no cook one if you discount the minimal hot dry pan roasting that is needed. You could make the Muesli and store to eat as is without the parfait trappings.

Breakfast Parfait with Mango

Serves 4

For the Muesli

Cornflakes                             100 grams (or wheat-flakes, whichever is preferred)

Oats                                          100 grams

Dried Fruit                            ½ cup (use dried dates, cranberries, figs etc)

Nuts                                         ¼ cup (use almonds, cashews, pistachios etc)

Sesame Seeds                       ¼ cup

For the Parfait

Yogurt                                    500 grams

Mango                                     2 cups, peeled and chopped

Honey                                     4 teaspoons (optional)

Method

To make the Muesli, dry roast the oats and chop the dried fruits into small bits. Roast the nuts and sesame seeds till they are changing colour. Cool it and mix together with oats, cornflakes, dried fruit and nuts. This can be stored in an air tight container and eaten with yogurt or milk and a dash of honey.

Put a muslin cloth over a wide soup strainer and add the yogurt to this. Set aside in the fridge for 2-3 hours to allow the water to drain away from the yogurt. I usually do this overnight. Once done, if using, add the honey and whisk the yogurt till no lumps remain.

To serve, assemble the parfait add a few tablespoons of the yogurt at the bottom of the serving bowl. I used a juice glass. Add the second layer with 4 tablespoons of the granola. Add another layer of yogurt, top with chopped mango and granola. Repeat till everything is used up. Chill for 10 minutes and serve.

Breakfast Parfait ~ Muesli, yogurt and mango

Breakfast Parfait ~ Muesli, yogurt and mango

Breakfast Muffins with Mango ~ Wholewheat & Egg-less

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A breakfast muffin is a misnomer. Make and enjoy these tasty little muffins any time of the day. They can be ofcourse had for breakfast, warmed slightly with a little butter, or as a tea time snack, post workout indulgence or snack box item for an adult or child.

I was almost entirely inspired by this recipe of fellow blogger who I endlessly stalk. I added chopped mango pieces instead of making them into a pulp. Remember how I gushed about her Masala Bread and made this Wholewheat Spinach Bread? Anyhoo, prolific bloggers make me mad. How do they churn out yumminess, take amazing pictures and have the post up before the season is out? Beats me…after all these years of blogging, I still can’t get my posts up and running.

On a side note, how many of you have food pictures from 4 years ago that you haven’t blogged yet? (*raises hand guiltily).

Wholewheat Mango Muffins

Whole Wheat Egg-less Mango Muffins

Makes 6 muffins

Mango                                     1 cup peeled and chopped (about 1/2 a large mango – I used Bananaganapalle)

Whole Wheat Flour            1 cup

Milk                                          1/2 cup

Jaggery/ Sugar                    ¼ cup (grated if using jaggery)

Baking Powder                     1 teaspoon

Baking Soda                           ½ teaspoon

Cardamom                             2 pods, skin removed and powdered smooth

Vegetable Oil                        2 tablespoons

Salt                                            a pinch

Vinegar                                   1 teaspoon

Coconut                                  2 tablespoons (fresh coconut grated or use dried)

Granola                                   2 teaspoons (for the topping)

 Whisk together the flour, coconut, salt, cardamom powder, baking powder and soda.

Add the vinegar to the milk and set aside for 10 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 180 C and lightly coat the insides of the pan with oil.

Add the oil and grated Jaggery/ sugar to the milk and vinegar and mix till the Jaggery has melted

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix gently in a few strokes till a batter is formed. Add the mango pieces and mix.

Spoon the batter into the muffin tray till about 2/3 full, top with the granola and bake for 26-28 minutes. Insert a skewer into the muffin at 25 minutes, if it comes out clean, remove from the oven.

Set aside to cool for 10-15 minutes. Serve warm with a little butter.

Wholewheat Egg-less Pancakes With Fresh Mango

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Yummy Weekend Breakfast

Yummy Weekend Breakfast

Trust me to suddenly wake up from my slumber when mangoes are on their way out and post a recipe that is elevated to the status of divine because of the fruit topping. I have slacked off this entire summer. Most of my whines have been because of the heat and the terrible ways in which it has tortured me. Just getting through the days chores was herculean and I acted the whole season like I was doing life a favour by just living it.

The only solace for me in the summer months are Mangoes. My favourites are Banaganapalle & Imam Pasand. But I will eat anything else that is spelt “MANGO”. We are fortunate to get more than 20 varieties of mangoes in Hyderabad, although the quantity that they are available in are dwindling because some of them are non commercial. I try and buy as many varieties as I can to enjoy at meal times or as dessert.

Most of the fruit eaten at home is fresh and as is. I very seldom venture out to do anything adventurous like bake or cook with fresh fruit. These pancakes are similar to the ones I made years ago here. Topping them with fresh fruit was something I enjoyed.

Make these for your weekend breakfast, or to celebrate Father’s Day today!

Whole Wheat Egg-less Pancakes with Mango

Makes 8 Pancakes

Whole-wheat Flour            1 cup

Baking Powder                     1 teaspoon

Baking Soda                           1 pinch

Melted Butter                       2 teaspoons

Powdered Sugar                  2 Tablespoons

Milk                                          1 cup

Vinegar / Lemon Juice      1 teaspoon

Butter                                        2 teaspoons additionally

Mango                                       2 cups, peeled, chopped and chilled

 

Add the vinegar/ lemon juice to the milk and set aside for 15 minutes.

Mix together the whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, powdered sugar.

Add the buttermilk and melted butter to the flour and mix lightly with a spoon till it forms a batter. Do not over mix. It is ok if the batter has a few smallish lumps.

Set aside for 10 minutes

Heat a non stick pan to medium and add a little butter to it. Add a ladleful of batter onto the hot pan and do not spread it. The batter will spread of its own. Cook on medium heat till the edges are turning golden brown and crisp.

Gently flip the pancake over. Cook for 30 seconds on the other side. Repeat with all the batter.

To serve, stack up 3-4 pancakes on a plate, add the chopped mango on the top and sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving.

Festive Aftermath ~ Orange Scented Spice Tea

Hope you all had a wonderful Deepavali whichever way you chose to celebrate. We had a lovely though tiring time. We headed to K’s parents home quite early in the day. Had a lovely family time over breakfast and lunch, much laughter and leg pulling. The one that is the most happy is always Sage. Everyone makes such a big deal out of him and his presence that I have a tough time getting him to sleep. We chose not to burn firecrackers this year and headed back home at 4 for a much needed nap.

Later in the evening, we headed to my friend’s J and B’s lovely home for a Diwali together. We got home way past midnight with a dog on steroids in tow. Surprisingly, Sage is unaffected by firecrackers. When I walk him, I am the one who jumps in my skin each time a ‘bomb’ goes off. he is so unaffected (touchwood) that last year it led me to believe briefly that he may be deaf!

To help you recover from all the sweet laden rich food indulgences over the festive season, here is some refreshingly fruity tea. Its pretty simple to make and if you have tea leaves, an orange and know how to boil water, you can make this!

Spiced Black Tea (Makes 2 Servings)

Water                                                 – 3 cups

Cinnamon Stick                              – 1 inch long piece

Honey                                                – 2 teaspoons

Fresh Ginger                                   – 1/2 inch piece, peeled and crushed

Star Anise                                         – 1 whole flower

Tea Leaves                                       – 1 teaspoon leaves or 1 tea bag

Orange peel                                     – 1/2 teaspoon (fresh is better, frozen or dried is fine too)

  1. Bring the water to boil in a saucepan and add the stick of cinnamon, orange peel, star anise and crushed ginger. Boil this for a minute till the spices infuse their flavour to the water.
  1. Strain the spices and add the tea leaves to the spiced water. Cover and steep for 2-3 minutes.
  1. Stir in the honey, strain the mixture into serving cups, top with a stick of cinnamon or a slice of orange and serve hot.

am really enjoying this non stop blogging. Thank you dear readers for all the encouragement and the kind words!

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Celebrations Galore ~ Baked Yogurt Tart in an Oatmeal Crust

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Celebrations galore today. 65 years of the birth of India. Despite the warts, still beautiful and engaging. All we need to do now is to deserve all that she has to offer us.

100 years of the woman I knew not much about until my favourite actress Meryl Streep brought her to life and exposed me to what a phenomenal influence she was on home cooks. All those of us who follow a passion, will learn important lessons of following our hearts from Julia Child.

Baked Yogurt Tart with Blueberries, Orange Zest and Almonds

Baked Yogurt Tart with Blueberries, Orange Zest and Almonds

In the midst of all of this, is hanging out with friends, so what if it is online and spread over 6 cities in two countries. We, (Arundhati, Arundathi, Aparna, Nandita and I) have baked together earlier, this month onwards, Monika joins us. Frantic back and forth on facebook about baking in tandem to celebrate Julia’s birth centenary went on. Posting recipes, coming up with options for ingredients we did or did not have, frame by frame advances and updates as we tackled various stages of the tart baking. Believe me when I say it was so much fun. That’s what happens when you make friends with people who have the same passions as you do. After a bit of a hiatus after two baking escapades, the baking club, now called The Sisterhood of the Traveling Cake Tins, decided on Julia Child’s Baked Yogurt Tart.

Pardon me if I say so myself, but this tart is perhaps one of the best things I have baked in a while, and there is a decent amount of baking that happens at the Escapades household. It has a cheesecake like texture and is not overtly sweet which is just the way I like my baked treats. Plus there is very little argue about the reasonably healthy dessert it automatically becomes when there is oats and yogurt in it.

Baked Yogurt Tart

Baked Yogurt Tart

Each one of the six of us used ingredients we had on hand, so each of the tarts is amazingly different. I loved how we interpreted it and added our own touches. I admit I am not one of those people who will run out and shop for ingredients for a recipe. I usually try to substitute what I have on hand, or skip to another recipe if I don’t have more than a couple of the listed ingredients. In this case, I didn’t have vanilla (horror for a self confessed baker!). I find that I am using a lot of orange zest instead and this tart too was no different. I loved how it paired with the yogurt and frozen blueberries. I didn’t have fresh fruit on hand, so used some of my stash of frozen blueberries. I was a bit anxious about how it would turn out, but was very happy with the results.

There is a celebration of Julia’s legacy to commemorate her 100 th Birth Anniversary by PBS with  “Cook For Julia” through the month of August. To join them, simply cook any one of Julia Child’s recipes. The deadline to join the party is 15th of August and as always, I make it by the skin of my teeth!

So here it is, my version of the Baked Yogurt Tart. I used a no roll pie crust from this recipe as the base.

Baked Yogurt Tart with Blueberries, Almonds and Orange Zest in an Oatmeal Pie Crust

(Adapted from Julia Child’s Baked Yogurt Tart and the Crust is from Baked Obsession’s Oatmeal Crust)

Ingredients

For the Crust (Makes one 9 inch tart shell)
½ cup (packed) light brown sugar
1 cup old-fashioned oats (I used Quaker’s quick cooking oats)
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter; melted and cooled (I used Amul’s Lite Bread Spread)
1 egg, beaten, for sealing the dough

For the Tart Filling
3 medium Eggs
3/4 cup Sugar
2 cups thick plain yogurt (I used one 200 ml tub of store bought yogurt, drained out the whey)
1 tablespoon fresh orange zest
¾ cup All Purpose Flour
A large pinch of salt
1/3 cup coarsely chopped Almonds (use any nuts of your choice or leave out if you have allergies)
1 cup frozen blueberries (I rinsed the frozen berries and left them in a sieve to drain out till needed, use any fresh berries or stone fruit you have)

To Make the Crust

Lightly butter the tart pan with removable bottom. Pulse the oats in the mixer to make a fairly smooth flour. In a bowl stir together the dry ingredients.
Add the melted and cooled butter, stir to combine. Press the mixture evenly into the pan to make a crust at the bottom and all the way up the sides of the pan. I used the bottom of a steel tumbler to press it down firmly.
Chill for about 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 325 F. Put a piece of baking paper or foil in the tart shell, add some pie weights such as uncooked rice or uncooked beans and bake the tart crust for about 20 min, until it is set and pale golden.
Brush the bottom with the beaten egg, and then bake again for about 5 minutes until set and shiny to prevent the crust from becoming soggy.
Cool the tart crust. (I skipped this step and filled the still pretty warm crust with the yogurt mixture)

Tart Pan: I used a 6 inch glass tart pan (in fact a 1½ inch deep lid of a casserole. Lined it with aluminum foil which I then buttered before pressing the tart shell into it. I also used two 3 inch tart pans with removable bottoms.

To Make the Filling

Beat together the eggs and the sugar till pale and thick. I used the blender jar of the mixer. Whisk the yogurt and salt to remove lumps. In a bowl, fold the yogurt into the eggs and sugar mixture along with the orange zest. Add the flour to this mixture, folding in gently. Pour this mixture into the tart shell gently till it is 2/3 full. Add the rinsed and drained frozen blueberries to the mixture, leaving about 1 inch around the edges for the nuts. Add the nuts to the edge of the pie crust. Bake for about 22 minutes at 325 F or till the middle is just set. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before chilling. Slice into wedges; dust with icing sugar and serve chilled or at room temperature.

baked yogurt custard

baked yogurt custard

I had 1 large cup of the filling leftover because my tart pan was smaller than what the recipe called for. I baked the filling for 15 minutes at 325 F without the crust in two small ramekins. Dusted it with sugar and served it as custard. The filling was just as good without the tart shell, so this is a pretty versatile recipe.

The yogurt tart is not very sweet and has a nice tang which paired well with the orange zest and blueberries. All in all, this is a keeper of a recipe.

Here are the tarts baked by my fellow bakers:

Aparna’s Yogurt Tart with Orange and Pistachios

Arundhati’s Cherry Berry Yogurt Tart

Nandita’s Baked Yogurt Berry Tart

Monika’s Baked Yogurt Tart with Fresh Figs and Blueberries

Recipe for White Chocolate Panna Cotta {Gelatin Free} with Raspberry Sauce

Pictures in this post taken by my friend A who blogs here

Panna Cotta has been a dessert that has captured my imagination for a while now. All those lovely creations accross the blogosphere have not helped either. The very thought of spooning “cooked cream” into my mouth sometimes had me salivating. But you really have to wait for good things to happen sometimes. And I had to make this for myself. I chose low fat cream. Yes I am a wuss that way, but you can go ahead and use full fat if you are feeling indulgent.

I bought a bag of frozen raspberries. I had all these beautiful raspberry filled dreams, till i cut open the bag and found that they had become large lumps of frozen squashed raspberries! Lumps of frozen raspberries are better than no raspberries and so I used them to make a sauce to be poured over the Panna Cotta. You can use any berries of choice, I think strawberries will work great here. as will any fruit preserve. Just thin it down with a little water and heat.

White Chocolate Panna Cotta  {Gelatin Free} with Raspberry Sauce  (makes 3 regular or 6 shotglass (60 ml) servings)

200 ml – fresh cream (I used i small carton amul low fat cream)

150 grams – chopped white chocolate

2 tablespoons – agar agar vanilla flavoured

1/2 cup milk (I used full cream)

In a saucepan, add the cream, milk and chopped chocolate. heat gently on a low flame and bring it to a gentle boil, stirring continuously to help the chopped pieces of chocolate melt. this will take about 3-4 minutes. Add the powdered agar agar to the heated mixture and stir till it has melted into the cream mixture and is thoroughly combined. Take the saucepan off the heat and allow it to cool for about 10 minutes. the mixture will begin to start getting thicker, mix it a couple of times to prevent a skin from forming. pour this into small shot glasses or small bowls. cool completely and cover each one with clingfilm.  chill it in the fridge for a minimum of 4-5 hours or overnight. This stays in the fridge for a few days, so is a good make ahead dessert.

Raspberry Sauce

In a saucepan, add 2 cups of raspberries (I used frozen), 3-4 tablespoons of sugar and 1/3 cup of cold water. Heat it on low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring now and then to make sure the raspberries are cooking through. the colour will begin to darken and the mixture will vigorously bubble over, take it off the heat and mash thoroughly with the back of a ladle to smash everything together. Cool this mixture for about 15 minutes and then pass it through a soup strainer to remove the seeds. These quantities will make you about 2/3 cup of raspberry sauce. Chill till needed.

To serve the pannacotta, spoon a few teaspoons of the raspberry sauce over the set pannacotta, garnish with mint or basil leaves and serve.

Note:

If you do not have berries of anykind, use 1/4 cup of fruit preserve or jam of choice. Add 1/4 cup of water and heat gently, stirring it to get a thick sauce.

p.s: Pictures used in this post taken by my friend A who blogs here

Eggless Baking ~ Lemon Blueberry Yogurt Cake

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My life is currently held captive by an 8 week old pooch who has no consideration for the fact that i am not a morning person and i dont like my ankles bitten into by razor sharp teeth. Despite all the mayhem around here (Read Sage’s story here), who could not fall in love with this face?

Meet Sage Sizzler Iyer. His sombre Sagacious look made K decide he should be called Sage, also scored high with me for the foodie connotation. (K was petrified i would give the pooch a sissy (according to him) name like basil or pepper). Since he’s anything but sagelike when he gets fortified with food, i went in for a second name as well!

Early morning wakings (at insane hours, even for my board exams i didnt wake up as early as Sage makes me these days) means that i have more time on my hands and browsing begins at a much earlier hour for me.

You can’t ignore the assault of beautiful pictures at 5 a.m when you are just wanting the milk to heat up and boil already so that you can have some caffeine in your blood stream and begin to resume your humanly functions. Its like the lowest resistance to anything. and so yesterday morning, rudely shoved out of bed at 5 a.m to feed the resident pooch baby food, I was waiting for the milk to boil, i saw this piece of cake on foodgawker and i was smitten. I had a bag of frozen blueberries stashed away in the freezer that i bought all glassy eyed at the supermarket the other week, from the imported foods aisle at hypercity. but am sure this recipe will work well with any other fruit cut up real small.

I looked thru my pantry and gathered all the things i needed. I made it eggless as we were expecting guests dinner who dont eat eggs. it was convenient that i had an egg replacer on hand, else I’d have used powdered flax seeds. I used a 9 inch tart pan to bake it and not as a loaf. Also swapped the All Purpose Flour for my regular multi grain chapati flour.

i had this baking in the oven even breakfast was made. it smelt heavenly as it baked. The flavour of the blueberry with the lemon syrup was very unique and it was served warmed up after lunch as dessert.

Here is the original recipe. below is my version with the changes.

For the cake:

1 1/2 cups + 1 tablespoon Multigrain Wheat Flour (you could also use Whole Wheat flour or all-purpose flour), divided

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt (I used home made, made with toned 2% fat milk)

1 cup sugar

3 teaspoons Orgran Egg Replacer mixed with 3 tablespoons of water or use 3 large eggs

2 teaspoons grated lemon zest (approximately 2 lemons)

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen, thawed and rinsed ( I used frozen)

For the Lemon Syrup:

1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/3 cup sugar

Method:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease bottom and sides of one 9 inch round cake tin or 9 x 5-inch loaf pans; dust with flour, tapping out excess.

In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.

In a large bowl, (I did this in a blender jar used the mixer) whisk together the yogurt, sugar, egg replacer, lemon zest, vanilla and oil. Pour it into the dry ingredients and slowly with a gentle hand, incorporate them to make a batter.

Sprinkle the reserved flour over the blueberries and toss them. Gently fold into the batter.

Pour the batter into the prepared cak tin pan and bake 50 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. Let cool in the pans for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack on top of a baking sheet.

Make the lemon syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir together the lemon juice and sugar until the sugar is completely dissolved. Once dissolved, continue to cook for 3 more minutes. Remove from the heat; set aside.

Use a toothpick to poke holes in the tops and sides of the warm loaf. Brush the top and sides of the loaf with the lemon syrup. Let the syrup soak into the cake and brush again. Let the cake cool completely.

The original recipe even has a lemon sugar glace, but I omitted this. I liked the tartness that the lemon syrup gave the cake. It was wonderful warm, am sure will taste fantastic when paired with vanilla icecream too. This is a moist cake and leftovers should be stored in the fridge. I think it will keep for 3-4 days. Ours was all gone the same day I baked it though!

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