Category: Cakes & Bakes

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake

Everyone is baking Christmas cakes, some boozy, some not so boozy…filled with nuts, preserved fruits and a whole lot of warm spices. Amazing aromas and delicious tasting cakes sure mean Christmas 😋

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

A traditional Christmas cake is moist, very moreish, filled with rum or whisky soaked dry fruits and preserved fruit peels. These are soaked for over a month or so in advance to incorporate the flavours of the alcohol into the ingredients. These cakes are often served as a large round cake or even at times as petit fours. They could be served as a naked cake, just dusted with some icing sugar. One could even cover them in marzipan or ice them with whipped cream and then decorate them with Christmas embellishments. They all look so pretty! ☃️🎄

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake  How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

However, I have never baked a boozy cake or even a traditional Christmas cake for that matter. I first thought I’d soak all the  fruit peels and dry fruits in some orange juice with some whole spices but I wasn’t quiet sure when would I get to actually bake the cake. So I changed the plan and this worked out really well.

I decided to bake a warm and hearty Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake. Some simple and fresh ingredients transformed into this gorgeous cake. I must admit it did turn out better than I had thought. 😊 And the texture was perfect, moist crumb and not very dense.

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

The addition of Cranberry gives the cake a bit of tartness in every bite that compliments the citrusy notes from the oranges very well. If you wish you omit the Cranberry here, do that or you can replace them with some colourful tutti Frutti or even chopped nuts. I added some warm spices here, feel free to omit them too if you wish. This recipe makes for an excellent summer cake with just the orange flavour or replace Orange juice with some lemon juice.

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Let’s start…

Yield: a 7″ round cake.

Equipment: an electric whisk, 7″ cake tin, a large mixing bowl, a medium sized mixing bowl, a silicon spatula, cooling rack, baking paper/ parchment paper, measuring cups/ spoons.

Ingredients:

2 cup all purpose flour (Maida)

1+1/2 cup powdered sugar

4 nos. large eggs

1 stick/ 100 gms unsalted butter @room temperature

1/2 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp ground clove

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 cup milk

3/4 cup fresh orange juice

1/4 cup dried cranberries

icing sugar to dust the cake

Method:

Preheat the oven @180’c. Line the base of the tin with parchment paper/ baking paper and grease and dust the sides well.

In a medium size bowl, seive together the flour, ground nutmeg, ground cloves, ground cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda. Set it aside. Dust the cranberries with some flour and set them aside.

Next, in a large mixing bowl, whisk together the butter and powdered sugar until light and fluffy. I used an electric whisk and it took me about 3-4 mins of whisking. Now add one egg at a time and whisk the butter and sugar mixture with the eggs until light and fluffy once again.

Now, add the seived flour mixture and milk in the egg-butter-sugar mixture alternately and fold the mixture with a silicon spatula. Do not mix with a heavy hand else all the air whisked in the eggs will escape. Then add the orange juice and the cranberries. Mix well.

Pour the batter in the tin and bake @ 170’c using the lower heating rods/ coil for 60 mins approximately or until a skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs. Note that every oven works differently so keep an eye on the temperature and the duration of the bake.

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake  How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

I prefer baking my cakes low and slow, low temperature takes longer to bake the cake but ensures it rises well without any cracks on the top.

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake  How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Once the cake is baked, remove it from the oven and cool it on a rack for 15 mins in the tin, then unmould it and cool it for a further 30 mins. Dust the top with some icing sugar. Slice it and serve. This cake keeps well for 3-4 days in an airtight container.

I used these spices, you can choose any spices of your choice.

Spiced Orange and Cranberry Cake  How to make an orange cake Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking
Hope you will bake this soon, it’s easy, alcohol free and absolutely delicious! 😀

Love,

Shreya💖

 

Gingerbread Man Cookies (eggless, no molasses)

Christmas 🎄✨is so close and all I think about is what all I wish to bake for it😋 There’s plenty to be done…I have already finished doing a fair bit in whatever little time I have between so many things…I almost thought I’d have to skip it this year!

The one thing that was on my mind were these gingerbread man cookies!! ☃️☃️ I’ve had these cookie cutters for ages now and i was itching to put them to good use 😂 I mean, I did bake gingread cookies last year too but just regular round ones and hence didn’t even post them on the blog…not to forget, I had baked them for New Years!! Lol!! Well, there’s a good reason being a bit tardy…..will come to that shortly.

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Don’t they look crisp, all nice and crunchy!? Well that’s precisely why I didn’t mind waiting for an entire year to share the perfect recipe for an egg free, molasses free version of these cuties. I had tried a couple of recipes last year (I had more time then I guess to keep experimenting)…anyways I didn’t enjoy them as they had egg and also called for molasses. I found all the ingredients easily but maybe it was the flavour that wasn’t quite right. Or maybe it was me..I did something…I don’t know! Those cookies looked great even as a typical round, flat version but obviously they lacked the snap and crunch in every bite.

After hunting for another version which would be eggless and molasses free, I did stumble upon a great keeper of a recipe!

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

The texture of these gingerbread man cookies is just how it’s supposed to be, crunchy and keeps fresh for upto 2 weeks in an airtight container. They have wonderful snap of them and the aroma…well it’s smells like Holidays in my home 😍 These best part, no electric heater or whisk is needed, no fancy equipments either…just make the dough and roll it out, use a cookie cutter of any shape you like, a star or some Christmas trees or even little mittens if you get hold of them. Bake these and ice them or enjoy them just like that.

Do read the recipe carefully before starting out. Also keep all the ingredients ready on the work surface, it will save you time and you will definitely avoid missing out anything important.

Also note that every oven works differently so please monitor trhe temperature and the baking time as per your oven. 

Yield: 16-18 cookies (I used medium sized cutters and rolled the dough a bit thick)

Equipment: a heavy bottomed saucepan, a wired whisk, measuring cups/ spoons, a large mixing bowl, cling wrap, cookie cutters or knife (if you’re going for simply square or rectangular cookies), baking pan, parchment paper/ baking paper, cooling rack.

Ingredients:

1+1/4 cup all purpose flour (maida)

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 cup unsalted butter

1/2 cup sugar

1/8 cup milk (you may need a bit extra)

2 tbsp corn syrup (use honey if you can’t find corn syrup but I have not tried honey in this recipe so far)

a few golden or silver sprinkles to decorate the gingerbread men cookies (I ran out of icing sugar🙄😑)

Method:

In a large mixing bowl, seive together the flour, ground cinnamon, ground cloves, ground ginger, ground nutmeg and the baking soda. Set these aside.

Now, place butter, corn syrup, milk and sugar in the sauce pan and turn on the heat. Let the butter melt and the sugar dissolve completely on a low flame while stirring it continuously with a wired whisk. Once the sugar has melted, turn off the flame. Let the mixture cool for just 5-7 mins but not more as it thickens because of the corn syrup.

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Next, add this butter and sugar mixture into the sieved flour and spices. Mix well using the whisk. The dough will come together very easily, if not add just 1/2 teaspoon of milk and bring the dough together. If needed only then add a few more drops of milk. If you add too much milk, the dough will turn out to be extremely gluelike and won’t hold a good shape. 

Now, wrap the dough in cling film and refrigerate for 10-15 mins. Please do not refrigerate the dough for longer as it will become too hard to roll out.

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Preheat the oven @ 180’c.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator, place it between two sheets of cling wrap, dust it with very little flour and roll it out to a thickness of 4 mm approx (I like them thick, you can roll them to a thickness of 3 mm too). Use a cookie cutter or knife to cut them out.

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas bakingimg_6212

Line a baking pan/ tray with parchment paper or baking paper and place these cookies a little apart from each other on it. Push  the sprinkles in place where you want to make the eyes and smile for the gingerbread man. Or else do an icing later. The sprinkles won’t melt while baking or fall off later.

Tip: roll and cut all the dough at once because this dough gets a bit sticky. If you have a small oven and can bake only 10 cookies at a time, keep the remaining cut out cookies on a plate in the refrigerator until you have to bake them. Please do not freeze the dough, it will become rock hard and will not come to a good texture to roll them later.

Bake the cookies @180’c for 13-14 mins using the lower rod for the first 11 mins and the upper and the lower, both rods for the last 2-3 mins to ensure a good colour. (My cookies cracked a bit as some of the sugar wasn’t melted well , but they still turned out crisp and didn’t spread much).

Keep an eye while baking them. Cool them on a cooling rack. Click here to learn how to make and use eggless royal icing to ice and decorate any cookies.

So it’s the corn syrup that replaces molasses and makes these cookies crisp.

Gingerbread man cookie recipe Eggless no molasses gingerbread cookie recipe How to replace molasses in gingerbread cookie recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking

Making this is a lot of fun and you can also include your kids while rolling the dough or icing the cookies later 😚

Love,

Shreya😍

Adapted from art of dessert.

Chocolate-Dipped Cinnamon Biscotti

Biscotti is a traditional Italian cookie which requires the dough to be shaped as logs, baked until done, then cooled a bit, sliced and baked again until crispy and crunchy! A perfect companion to your coffee. There’s no other way to describe it except – too good! 

Yes, if I may say so myself…this recipe is a keeper. Don’t hunting for other recipes of biscotti because you won’t need one if you try this recipe☺️ This has become my go to recipe for biscotti for the past year or so…and I bake them often!

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

You can obviously make out how crunchy these are, but definitely not in a bad way! They are crunchy and yet very enjoyable. I will point a few basics that I learnt from this recipe after failing with a couple other recipes in the past.

Essentially, eggs are the only wet ingredients that are added to any biscotti recipe but adding butter or oil can make them richer with obviously a much better texture. This recipe called for oil too but I somehow didn’t like the after taste and hence skipped it after the first trial.

Eggs, yes I have used 1 and a 1/2 egg here…don’t be surprised. I always make half of what this original recipe specifies and trust me, the 1/2 egg is very essential (I realised that too with some trial and error) so do not miss that. However, if you’ve decided to half my recipe, I am not sure how the egg factor will work out! Or probably, ping me later and I will definitely come up with a way for you to do that too ☺️ Else, just use a really small egg.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

When I talk about my favourite flavour in a biscotti, I will always say Cinnamon! Else, you can even keep it simple by adding adding just vanilla extract, or if you like nuts, add some sliced pistachios or almonds in the dough. However, if you’re using almonds, do toast them slightly to avoid ending up with soggy nuts. The original recipe calls for brown sugar but I have always used regular castor sugar and I am perfectly happy with the flavour! We, my hubby and I love the flavour of dark chocolate hence, I have dunked these biscottis in some melted chocolate once they had cooled off completely. 😋

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

Making biscotti takes time, it’s the baking twice that takes time and not making its dough. Getting the dough together is a quick mixing job, then this dough needs to be shaped into logs of deliciousness and then bakedonce…and another time too!! 😉

I have added a lot of step by step pictures as always …so you’re pretty much sorted! I don’t think you’ll have a difficult time going forward with it 😊

Yield: 12 cookies

Equipment: a rolling pin, cooling rack, baking tray, a large mixing bowl, a large serrated knife, parchment paper, measuring cups/ spoons, weighing scales (I have used it to measure everything to the last gram)

Ingredients:

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe  Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

131 gms all purpose flour (maida)

1/4 tsp cinnamon powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp baking powder

100 gms castor sugar

30 gms cold and cubed unsalted butter

2 nos. eggs (follow my tip on this)**

1 tbsp milk (for the egg wash)

30 gms dark chocolate (morde) + 1 tsp butter – for dunking

Method: (I am using step numbers, there’s a reason, so follow the steps carefully)

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon powder, salt and sugar.

2. Add cold and cubed butter into the flour and sugar mixture. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingertips until the flour mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Set it aside.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas bakingimg_5861img_5862

3. Now in a small bowl, whisk one egg. Now remove half of the whisked into another bowl (Save the half whisked egg for egg wash).

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

**Add one whole egg to the second bowl in which you have transferred half of a whisked egg. Now whisk this one and a half egg together. Add vanilla extract to the whisked eggs and whisk again.

4. Now add the whisked mixture of eggs and vanilla extract into the flour and butter. Use a large silicon spatula to mix until everything is well moistened but do not over mix.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

5. Now, sprinkle some flour in a large plate or the working surface. Place the dough on this floured surfaced and knead well for a few minutes. But keep enough loose flour around as this dough is super sticky so you’ll continuously need to dust the surface and your palms too.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

Dont worry about the dough even if it looks too sticky, it will all come together in a few minutes.

In the mean while, preheat the oven at 160’c.

6. Shape the dough as shown below and place it on a parchment lined baking tray. I had dusted the parchment paper with some flour too.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

7. We had set aside 1/2 a whisked egg aside, add 1 tbsp of milk to it and whisk again. Use it to Give an egg wash to the shaped dough.

8. Bake this shaped dough at 160’c for 20-25 minutes using the lower heating element. In the last 5 minutes of the baking time, turn on the upper heating elements to give a good colour to the top of the biscotti.

Leave the oven running at 140’c.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

9. Now, let this cool for about 15 minutes but not completely cold. Using a large serrated knife, cut it into 1.5 inch wide slices. Place them on the parchment lined baking tray as shown below.

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe  Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

10. Bake the sliced biscotti on the first side for 7-8 mins. Then flip them over to bake the other side for another 5 mins. Remove them from the oven and let them cool completely before enjoying these crunchy treats with your favourite cuppa! 🤗

11. If you wish to dip them in chocolate too, melt together 30 gms of dark chocolate with 1 tsp of butter over a double boiler or in a microwave. Once the biscotti has cooled completely, dip one end of each biscotti in the melted chocolate, let them dry and then they are ready to serve! You can dip the entire biscotti in chocolate too, no one will judge you 😁

Biscotti recipe Cinnamon biscotti recipe Chocolate dipped biscotti recipe Polkapuffs recipes Christmas cookie ideas Christmas baking

These stay crunchy and fresh in an airtight container for about a week or so.

These can be amazing edible gifts this Holiday Season! 🎄🎁☃️

Love,

Shreya💗

Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction

Rose and Pistachio Cookies

It just dawned on me last weekend that Christmas is very close🎅🎄☃️❄️🎁…yeah, overload with the emoticons…but can you blame me…. this is the only time around the year that I can actually use them😂 LoL!! Anyways…so Christmas…what do you guys do for Christmas?! I’d love to know….I mean, in India, there is no snow in most parts of the country and all…but still I love the Christmassy air around me…probably my Convent days remind me of carols and decorations and parties…☺️🎉🎊….I wish I could make a snowman outside my porch and have a beautiful snowfall on Christmas Eve….

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

Anyways….that wish will have to wait..won’t it, now?! So the husband was travelling last week…and I obviously had a lot of time on my hands…besides, I knew he’d love coming home to something sweet and delicious…made by yours truly! What better than some exotically flavoured cookies to go with his tea!?

We really love freshly baked shortbread cookies…they are crisp, mildly sweet and the perfect base recipe to experiment with a ton of flavours. And that’s exactly what these Rose and Pistachio Cookies are all about.

Some of my readers wanted to know a little bit about a traditional “shortbread” when I had shared the recipe for my Almond Shortbread Cookies earlier this year….they could be great for your Christmas Cookie box too. They make for an ideal gift as well.

First baked in Scotland in 1736, shortbread is very popular around Christmas, the English refer to it as a biscuit, cookie for the Americans is traditionally made with 3 parts all purpose flour, 2 parts butter and 1 part sugar. Although, modern recipes even call for cornflour which gives a more stable texture to these cookies. However, it is added when you are making an eggless version, cornflour helps in keeping the shape of the cookie.

Shortbread is always baked at a low temperature until it’s very slightly golden around the edges…crumbly when just out of the oven but sets and becomes firmer as it cools down. It can be shaped as one prefers, round or square or simply hand rolled and pressed down with the tines of a fork. I personally like the scallop-edged ones☺️

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

The best part about these cookies is that they have such a mild fragrance of rose, you’ll almost miss it…not at all overpowering and then comes a welcome crunch from the Pistachio slivers….a perfect fusion of Mediterranean flavours with the old world charm of these very English biscuits 😀

Yield: 12 medium biscuits

Equipment: electric whisk, measuring cups/ spoons, baking paper, rolling pin, cookie cutter or knife, mixing bowl, baking tray, cooling rack, cling wrap.

Ingredients:

1+1/4 cup Maida  (APF), plus some extra to dust while rolling the dough

1/2 tbsp cornflour

1/4 cup+1 tbsp castor sugar

5 tbsp unsalted butter

1/4 tsp rose water

2-3 tbsp Pistachio slivers

dried rose petals to garnish (optional)

Method:

In a large mixing bowl, beat together the sugar and butter until the sugar combines completely with the butter and the mixture turns white and very fluffy, took me about 3-4 mins of whisking on high speed setting.

Next, add the rose water, cornflour and maida (APF) to the sugar-butter mixture and whisk once again until everything is combined well.

Wrap the cookie dough in some cling and refrigerate for 30 mins or put it in the freezer for 20 mins.

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

Preheat the oven at 160’c for 10 mins. Line a baking tray with baking paper and dust it with some maida (APF).

Once the dough is set post refrigeration, dust the dough with some maida (APF) and roll it between two sheets of baking paper to a thickness of 3 mm. Sprinkle the pistachio slivers and rolls once again slightly to ensure that the pistachio slivers are embedded into the dough.

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

Now, cut them into any shape of your choice. If using cookie cutters then dip them into some maida (APF) before using them to avoid unevenly cut cookies.

img_5768

Place the cut out cookies in the refrigerator for another 20 mins or in the freezer for 10 mins. Then bake @ 160′ c for 12-15 mins or until the edges turn slightly golden. You have to use only the lower baking element for the first 10 mins and then turn on the upper heating elements in the last 5 mins to give a little colour to the top of these cookies. (Note: every oven works differently so please keep an eye while baking these cookies).

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

This how they look fresh out of the oven. They crisp up as they cool. Let them rest on the warm baking tray for 10 mins then transfer to a cooling tray for them to cool completely.

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

This is what the base of the cookies looks like post baking and cooling completely. These can now be stored in airtight containers or cookie tins. They remain fresh and crisp for around 3-4 days.

Note: the cookie dough can be frozen in a cling wrap for upto a week. Thaw the dough in the refrigerator overnight, keep in room temperature for 10 mins and then roll, cut and bake them as per the above recipe. This recipe uses cornflour, it is very reliable as it stops the cookie from spreading too much as does the refrigeration. So please, follow all the steps correctly and you will have a perfect cookie☺️

Rose and Pistachio cookies Polkapuffs recipes Christmas baking Christmas cookies Rose and Pistachio shortbread cookie recipe Eggless shortbread cookie recipe

My hubby loved these flavours, as did I. You can use this recipe as the base and incorporate any flavour of your choice.

Love,

Shreya💗

Adapted from wallflower kitchen.

Eggless Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins

Love baking…absolutely love it 😍 so little to do and so much to enjoy!! And I can assure you that you’ll love these vegan, eggless and wholewheat muffins! They are so healthy too as they have been sweetened with honey 🙂 and are super moist as they have pumpkin! Sounds delicious!? Wait till I get to the last bit….

img_5423

The last and final flourish to these beauties comes from the cinnamon sugar dusting 😍..oh so yum! Do I have you with me so far…!?

So the last 10 days have been going on with too many activities around me…assignments kept me on my toes, Navratri celebrations and the cooking were being juggled with the blog posts alongside…Dusshera was spent with much gusto…🤗 And not to forget the calories that we inhaled during all this😄 And if that wasn’t enough….with my birthday just gone a couple of days ago…it was the breaking point of heavy food..sweets..binge eating!! So much so..that I didn’t bake a thing for my own birthday…lol! Hubby was expecting another batch of my gooey Brownie Muffins but I was just not in the mood!

img_5426

So this was something I’d been eyeing on Pinterest and I conveniently had about a large chunk of pumpkin in my refrigerator…. my own little early Hallowe’en cum late birthday treat😄

img_5409

These were comforting and warm…I had two of them at a go!! Hubby too approved these…says they are a welcome change to the usual flavours 😄

Let’s get your oven going…

Yield: 8 muffins

Equipment: 2 mixing bowl, muffin tray, muffin liners, measuring cups/ spoons, manual wired whisk, cooling rack.

Ingredients:

109 grams or  approx 3/4 cup + 2 tbsp Wholewheat flour (I used Aashirwaad Select Atta or you can use APF too)

1+1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

3/4 tsp cinnamon powder

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup + 2 tbsp honey or more as per taste

183 gms fresh pumpkin purée (see detailed method below)

For the cinnamon sugar coating:

3-4 tbsp icing sugar

3/4 tsp cinnamon powder

Method:

Preheat the oven at 160’c for 10 mins. (Please note that every oven works differently and you must adjust it accordingly)

Line the muffin tray with liners. Set it aside. (If you don’t have liners, grease the tray with oil.)

How to make the pumpkin purée:

Take fresh ripe/ orange pumpkin, wash, peel and cut into small cubes. Add 1 tbsp water to it and make a thick purée. Weigh it to 183 gms/ approximately 3/4 cup.

In a large mixing bowl, sift together the atta, baking pwd, salt and cinnamon pwd. Set it aside.

In another mixing bowl, whusk together the oil, honey and pumpkin purée.

Now, add the dry sifted ingredients to the whisked wet ingredients. Fold everywhere together gently.

Pour the batter into each muffin liner upto 3/4 th capacity. Bake @160’c for 30 mins or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the muffin comes out clean. Eggless cinnamon sugar pumpkin muffins Polkapuffs recipe Eggless vegan muffinsEggless cinnamon sugar pumpkin muffins Polkapuffs recipe Eggless vegan muffins

Once baked, set the Muffins on a cooling tray for about 15 mins.

For the the cinnamon sugar: 

Mix together icing sugar and cinnamon powder in a small bowl. Using a small tea strainer dust this cinnamon sugar on the muffins:) ….that’s it, they are ready! Perfect to have with some tea/ coffee or even on their own!

Eggless cinnamon sugar pumpkin muffins Polkapuffs recipe Eggless vegan muffins

Also, click here to try my delicious tea time Vanilla Sponge cake in Pressure cooker.

Love,

Shreya💖

Adapted from texanerin baking.

Brownie Muffins

Brownie…..isn’t that one word enough to make you reach out and grab a piece and then turn around the other way, all by yourself and not share with anyone! Mind you…grab a large or probably even the largest piece if possible. Happens with you?! A lot?! LoL😂 Then these Brownie Muffins are for you my friend. Err…not these ones though..you got to make your own!😜

Reason….because these were made just for my hubby..celebrating his birthday! 💖😘🎂 with these chocolaty, super fudgy and gooey brownies! Who says you must have a cake on a birthday with candles???! We have these brownies and a peck on the cheek😍

Brownie Muffins recipe How to make fudgy brownies Polkapuffs recipe for brownie Easy homemade brownie recipe

He loves them! They are morish…slightly crisp on the top and soft within. I have just sprinkled them with some slivers of chocolate…..you can choose not to or maybe dust these with some cocoa instead. Or even keep them plain. This is kind of my go-to recipe for brownies, you can make a large brownie too, need not bother with making Muffins at all. But as I said you get a whole muffin to yourself, right 😜!

Anyways…let get started..

Yield: 6 large brownies

Equipment: a large saucepan, a heat resistant bowl, a sieve, a large mixing bowl, electric whisk (or manual), muffin tray, muffin liners, cooling rack, a rubber spatula, measuring cups/spoons (I have used a weighing scale to measure everything in grams)

Ingredients:

56 gms dark chopped cooking chocolate (I use Morde)

56 gms unsalted butter chopped roughly  (approximately 1/2 cup)

28 gms maida (all purpose flour)

18 gms unsweetened cocoa pwd

75 gms fine castor sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 nos. large egg

Method:

Pre-heat the oven @180’c for 10 mins.

Keep chopped chocolate and butter in a heat proof bowl. Place water in the saucepan to boil. Once it comes to a boil, place the heat proof bowl with the chocolate and butter on top of the sauce pan. Let the chocolate and butter melt together, stir it a couple of times with a rubber spatula. Once it’s melted, set the bowl aside and let it cool.

Brownie Muffins recipe How to make fudgy brownies Polkapuffs recipe for brownie Easy homemade brownie recipeBrownie Muffins recipe How to make fudgy brownies Polkapuffs recipe for brownie Easy homemade brownie recipeBrownie Muffins recipe How to make fudgy brownies Polkapuffs recipe for brownie Easy homemade brownie recipe

Next, beat the egg and sugar together in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add the melted chocolate and butter mixture into the eggs. Whisk once more. Then sieve in the cocoa powder and maida into the eggs. Add the vanilla extract too. Fold the mixture gently with a rubber spatula. Do not over mix the mixture.

Line the muffin tray with liners and fill each portion with the mixture upto 3/4 th capacity. Bake them at 180’c for 18-20 mins. Once baked, insert a toothpick in the centre of a brownie, it must come out with moist and gooey crumbs. That’s it, the Muffins are ready. Cool them on the cooling rack for a few minutes. Serve them warm with a scoop of ice cream or just enjoy them plain.

Brownie Muffins recipe How to make fudgy brownies Polkapuffs recipe for brownie Easy homemade brownie recipe

Don’t these tempt you…😁 Also try my eggless nutties brownie.

Love,

Shreya💝

Eggless Wholewheat Cardamom Cookies | Elaichi Biscuits

Chai and biscuits…have become chai and cookies. The English biscuits have been taken over by chunky cookies all the way from the West! I am not complaining…I never have tea…so the cookies over biscuits dilemma has never haunted me🤗

But my hubby loves his tea…it’s no secret. Although he is not a biscuit or cookie loving kind of a guy…he does like them once in a blue moon…and on that lucky day, he can clean out the tin! 😂

How to make wholewheat cookies Wholewheat cardamom cookies recipe Atta biscuit recipe How to make atta cookies Polkapuffs wholewheat cookies

Store bought cookies are not his kind…he finds them too sweet and the Maida (all purpose flour) makes it way too heavy. I agree…these are precisely the reasons why even I don’t like indulging in them too often. Also, these cookies or biscuits are often made with Dalda (vegetable fat) which isn’t the healthiest choice. Though they are very crisp but definitely not our choice.

So these atta biscuits (wholewheat cookies) were one of the earliest things I learnt to bake for my hubby back when I got my oven! There were few hits and many more misses 😂😂😂😂 I had burned bases to rock solid cookies which wouldn’t come off from the tray…though they were lined with parchment paper! Sometimes, they’d spread so much and turn into a congealed mass…LOL! 😜

But you learn..make your own mistakes and then understand where you went wrong. I referred to so many recipes all over the place just to make a good wholewheat cookie. Finally, almost over a year ago I was able to stick to a recipe where I was happy with each aspect of the result…. It was crisp, perfectly cooked and did not spread much. Just the way I wanted.

It took me almost over an year to bring them to my blog for you as I always bake these at night and clicking pictures isn’t possible then or even if I bake them during weekends, my hubby starts eating them warm off the baking tray! There’s hardly any left for me…forget clicking them 😁

I am going to share a few tips here that I learnt in the process of learning to bake these atta cookies ..

* the very first trial with making these atta cookies was inspired by a recipe I saw in some magazine at my Mom’s place. It had used butter obviously, but I used oil to make it healthy. The result was a congealed mass on the tray even after baking for 25 mins. It simply spread.

* next, after a few hits and misses, I tried them using ghee (clarified butter). They tasted decent but felt a little heavy for our palates. They were crisp but became soggy on the second day. They too spread but not too much. Not satisfactory.

* finally I thought of trying with unsalted cooking butter as per the original recipe but I changed the proportions as per my choice and used just the basic ingredients. By this time I’d already baked the exact same thing over 7-8 times. So I was able to judge the texture and the quantity on sight. Also, extensive research online made me understand the value of refrigerating the cookie/ biscuit dough. It helps. Big time! Using butter does make it crisper and the end result is what you see in the pictures here. The cookies/ biscuits do spread. It will. But it is minimal and gives you perfect looking cookies. These cookies stay fresh and crisp for upto 3 days in an airtight box. (My experience, it never lasts longer than that as I always make a small batch)

Hope you have gone through the tips above before we begin the actual recipe.

Yield: 12-14 small cookies

Equipment: (no fancy equipment is ever used for this, remember I was learning to bake with basic things at home) a wired whisk, a large mixing bowl, a small bowl, baking tray, parchment paper/ baking paper, a cooling rack, measuring cups/ spoons, as small pan, a weighing scale if you have one would be excellent.

Ingredients:

1 cup wholewheat atta (ashirwaad select atta)

75 gms unsalted butter (approximately 3/4th quantity of a 100gm. I used a weighing scale here)

6 tbsp powdered sugar (add more or less as per taste)

1/2 tsp cardamom pwd (Elaichi pwd)

1 small pinch baking soda

Method:

How to measure the atta – fill the cup with spoonfuls of atta. Do not dip the cup into the container with the atta. That way you will always end up with extra atta and the ratio will be wrong.

Seive the atta along with the baking soda once. Set it aside.

Take butter in the pan. Let it melt on very low flame. Once it’s melted, let it cool for 2 mins. Take the butter in a small bowl, then add the powdered sugar and cardamom pwd in the butter. Whisk well to make a smooth mixture.

How to make wholewheat cookies Wholewheat cardamom cookies recipe Atta biscuit recipe How to make atta cookies Polkapuffs wholewheat cookiesHow to make wholewheat cookies Wholewheat cardamom cookies recipe Atta biscuit recipe How to make atta cookies Polkapuffs wholewheat cookiesHow to make wholewheat cookies Wholewheat cardamom cookies recipe Atta biscuit recipe How to make atta cookies Polkapuffs wholewheat cookies

Now add this mixture to the sieved atta and baking pwd. Mix it gently and bring it together. This is not like Roti dough so it with crumbly. Let the dough rest for 5-7 mins to absorb the butter. Then gently shape the cookies (takes me 20 mins for just 12 cookies each time). Make sure the shape of cookies is evenly sized and smooth all over. (See the pic above). Place them apart on parchment lined baking tray.

I can make 12 cookies with this quantity, you may have 10 or 14 as well, depending on the size. Once you have shaped the dough, keep them in the refrigerator for 15 mins.

Preheat the oven at 150’c for 10 mins. (Every oven is different so work according to that for setting the temperature and duration for baking).

Take the baking tray out from the refrigerator and place it in the middle of the oven to bake at 150’c for 20-22 mins. They will turn golden on the top and slightly brown at the bottom. Do not bake at high temperatures else the cookies with burn at the base. Once the cookies are baked, keep the baking tray out of the oven for 10 mins on a cooling rack.

How to make wholewheat cookies Wholewheat cardamom cookies recipe Atta biscuit recipe How to make atta cookies Polkapuffs wholewheat cookies

Then transfer the cookies to the cooling rack for cooling them completely. They are soft at first then turn crisp as they cool.

Once completely cooled, store them in airtight box.

How to make wholewheat cookies Wholewheat cardamom cookies recipe Atta biscuit recipe How to make atta cookies Polkapuffs wholewheat cookies

Occasionally, I do like a cup of lemon tea with these cookies! Also, try sugar cookies by me.

Love,

Shreya💝

Slightly adapted.

Homemade Pav | Pav Buns | Dinner Rolls

Pav Bhaji on my mind….like for the last entire week I am unable to think beyond it. Every veggie that I glance at reminds me that it could go into my Bombay Pav Bhaji 😂😂 no, I am very serious! I so didn’t want to order any…because those are just not my kind of Bhaji…hence tonight is going to be it:) {happy dance}

Anyways…so I planned to make some Pav ahead of making the Bhaji. It’s beyond easy if you ask me…one bowl magic I call it😊

How to make Pav at home Easy recipe for dinner rolls Pav recipe Pau recipe Polkapuffs recipe

Once you learn to handle the yeast well, making a bread or Pav bread isn’t difficult at all. For me, it’s always been more of the technical part that I concentrate on rather than the recipe itself. The ratios are no doubt very important, I can’t stress enough on that here. One needs to measure them out correctly else things could go horribly wrong! So pay attention to every detail when making a Pav or Bread dough.

How to make Pav at home Easy recipe for dinner rolls Pav recipe Pau recipe Polkapuffs recipe

Let’s learn how..

Yield: 6 Pav (depends on the size of the Pav)

Equipment: measuring cups/ spoons, baking tin, cooling rack, a large mixing bowl.

Ingredients:

2+1/2 cups Maida (all purpose flour) + extra Maida (APF) to dust the dough while kneading (I used appropriately 1/2 cup)

5 tbsp oil + extra to grease the tin & to brush on top of the Pav

salt to taste

1/2 cup lukewarm water (comfortable enough to dip your finger)

3 tsp yeast (I used active dry yeast)

2+1/2 tsp sugar

Method:

Take 1/2 cup of lukewarm water in a glass or bowl, add the yeast & sugar. Stir it lightly. Set it aside for 10 to let the yeast bloom. (Note that if the water is too hot, the yeast won’t bloom. So be careful with the water. If the yeast doesn’t bloom, start again)

How to make Pav at home Easy recipe for dinner rolls Pav recipe Pau recipe Polkapuffs recipeHow to make Pav at home Easy recipe for dinner rolls Pav recipe Pau recipe Polkapuffs recipeHow to make Pav at home Easy recipe for dinner rolls Pav recipe Pau recipe Polkapuffs recipe

See the first picture above, the yeast has bloomed really well. It almost overflowed on the kitchen top.

Next, see the second picture above. For making the dough add the flour in the bowl, season with salt. Add the oil and slowly add the yeast mixture. Do not add all the mixture at one go as we may end up with a very gluey and wet dough. Keep adding a little bit at a time and make a dough like we do for rotis. This dough will be sticky so you can add some more flour and knead it well. The longer you knead it, the smoother and softer it will be.

If you feel the dough has become too dry while kneading, add the yeast mixture and continue kneading. I used the entire yeast mixture but did not require any more water. Once the dough has become smooth, grease it with oil and place it the bowl for it’s first rise/ prove. I gave it approximately 30 mins or so.

See the third picture above, the dough almost tripled.

Then I pushed down the dough and released the air within. I then greased my hands and divided the dough into 6 parts. I greased the baking tin and placed the divided dough in it. Brushed each portion with oil. Then I left it for the second rise/ prove for 20 mins.

How to make Pav at home Easy recipe for dinner rolls Pav recipe Pau recipe Polkapuffs recipe

Preheat the oven at 200’c for 10 mins. Place the tin on the middle rack and bake the Pav for 20 mins @ 200’c using both the upper and the lower heating coil/ rods/ elements. (Please note every oven works differently hence adjust the temperature and duration according to that). I let them sit in the oven with the upper rods turned on for an extra 5-7 mins to get a lovely brown crust.

This is what they looked like as they came out of the oven! Brush them with some melted butter if you like.

They turned pillowy soft with a firm crust and absolutely melt in the mouth kinda good….yum!

How to make Pav at home Easy recipe for dinner rolls Pav recipe Pau recipe Polkapuffs recipe

How to make Pav at home Easy recipe for dinner rolls Pav recipe Pau recipe Polkapuffs recipe

I have made Pizza Rolls, sandwich breads, focaccia bread & Wholewheat Pizza Base too for the blog, do check them out.

Love,

Shreya💝

Peanut Butter & Choco Chip Cookies (eggless)

Today seems like such a cookie kinda day to me…all I want to do is grab a good book, some cookies and curl up on the couch! But I won’t, because I am a nice person (😉) and I chose to share a delicious recipe with you guys!! 

May I say I am choosy about my cookies?! I am sure there are many who’ll wholeheartedly agree with me on this. Don’t go putting anything that comes out of a pretty carton into your mouth. Most of those haven’t been made with all the loving that you’d put into a homemade cookie! Yes, love makes all the difference…it tastes better…melts in your mouth and your (my) hubby goes crazy for them! 😍

image

Look wise, ahem…I’d say don’t pin your hopes on making every cookie look exactly the same or all perfect around the edges, still if can do that, great! For me homemade cookies should look the part…I don’t go trying to make each of them look even and all…!! Some are bigger than the rest…who cares, get a nibble or two extra😁

I love the bits of Choco chips in every bite and they compliment peanut butter just right. These are absolutely crisp and stay fresh for about 2-3 days in an airtight container, that’s the max they last in my home…maybe they’d keep fresh longer! Who’s to know?! 😂

My suggestion – bake a smaller batch, they taste great when fresh.

Also, you can freeze the dough for upto a week. Portion them before freezing, spread the portioned dough on a plate and freeze. Once frozen, store them in ziplock bags. Later, thaw the number of cookies you want to bake at room temperature for about and hour or until they come to room temperature, then pop them in the refrigerator for 15 mins to set a bit else they will spread too much while baking. Bake them as per the instructions given below.

Anyways…if you are as enthusiastic as me about baking your own cookies, check these out too….. Karachi Biscuits/ Tutti Fruity CookiesBrookies – fudgy mocha flavoured, glutenfree Amaranth cookies (rajgira), Bourbons, Almond Shortbread Cookies, no bake Peanut Butter Cookies, Chewy Butter Biscuits, Sugar Cookies with icing. (Most of these too are eggless…perfect isn’t it!?)

Let’s bake some cookies….:)

Yield: 9-10 cookies (I make them slightly large, yield depends on how you portion them..maybe if you’d keep them smaller, you’ll make around 12-13 cookies)

Equipment: measuring cups/ spoons, baking tray, mixing bowl, fork, parchment paper, a whisk/ electric whisk, cooling rack.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup Maida (all purpose flour)

1/4 cup brown sugar (I used Demerara sugar)

1/4 cup castor sugar

1 1/4 tsp milk

1/4 cup softened unsalted butter

5-6 drops vanilla extract/ essence

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 cup chocolate chips

2 tbsp peanut butter (I used smooth)

Method:

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together butter, both sugars, vanilla extract & milk until well combined and fluffy. (I used a manual whisk as it was a small quantity, but use a electric whisk if making double or triple the batch as they must be well combined)

Peanut Butter & Choco Chip Cookie Easy recipe for Peanut butter cookies Polkapuffs recipe

Next, add the flour, Choco chips & baking soda. Fold them in gently. Lastly add the peanut butter and fold again.

Peanut Butter & Choco Chip Cookie Easy recipe for Peanut butter cookies Polkapuffs recipePeanut Butter & Choco Chip Cookie Easy recipe for Peanut butter cookies Polkapuffs recipe

The dough is ready, rest it in the refrigerator for an hour to set the dough.

Once chilled, portion the cookie dough in equal sized balls, flatten them using a fork and place them an inch or two apart as they spread on a parchment paper lined baking tray. Chill the portioned dough balls again for 15 mins in the refrigerator.

Peanut Butter & Choco Chip Cookie Easy recipe for Peanut butter cookies Polkapuffs recipe

Preheat the oven at 180’c for 10 mins. Take the chilled portioned dough balls from the refrigerator and bake them at 180’c for 20-25 mins or until the cookies turn golden brown on all sides. (Bake using just the lower heating rods for first 20 mins, then turn on the upper rods too for the last 5-6 mins, please note every oven works differently so keep an eye on the cookies)

Once the cookies are baked, take them out of the oven, let the cookies first rest on the baking tray for 15 mins as they continue to crisp up further. Then transfer them on to the cooling rack for another 10 mins. Once they are completely cooled, store them in a parchment lined airtight container.

image

Hope you bake these soon😀

Love,

Shreya💖

Adapted from Calorie count

Wholewheat Pizza Base | How to make Wholewheat Pizza Base

You like pizza, I know you do! It’s Friday night…you’re watching your favourite rom-com, you scarf down 5 slices of Pizza without pausing for a breath….and then the DOUGH hits you! Hits you hard 😶😶😶 it’s super chewy, hard and weighs you down. Not the best note to start your weekend on, right!?

We are all the same, I am just like you…love to have pizzas…watch movie marathons and hate getting off my couch on weekends! But not at the cost of feeling weighed down and missing the next two meals or so. Hence, my Wholewheat Pizza Base is perfect for satisfying all those pizza cravings in a healthy way 🤗

Wholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipe

They are extremely light, crisp on the outside, moist within and taste way better than the all purpose flour ones. And the toppings…well that’s a whole other topic! Play! Yes, simply play with the toppings…veg..non-veg..greens or just plain cheese and herbs! They all work well with this Wholewheat Pizza Base. Although, if you still feel good about a APF pizza base, click here for a detailed, step by step recipe. Also, learn to make your own homemade pizza sauce, absolutely lip smacking and the quickest recipe ever!

A few things to keep in mind when making your own Wholewheat Pizza Base..

1. Yeast – I have used Active Dry yeast. Keep in mind the manufacturing date and the expiration date. Mine is manufactured in June’16 and expires in February ’17. So that’s the window..but I won’t be using this packet after December ’16. The effectiveness of the yeast diminishes with time. So work according to the dates.

2. Wholewheat Flour – I have used Aashirwaad Select flour here. Also, I didn’t seive the flour before kneading the dough. Just measured it correctly by first fluffing the flour, then adding spoonfuls of the flour into the measuring cup and then levelling it off with a palette knife. This is very crucial, so be measure it right!

3. Hydration – Wholewheat flour based breads need slightly more hydration as opposed to the APF ones. I used olive oil and water to hydrate the dough. (You can use regular refined oil too).

Let’s get baking!

Yield: 4-5 pizza bases depending on the size and the thickness. (I made 5 bases of approximately 7″ diameter).

Equipment: a baking tray, measuring cups/ spoons, rolling board, rolling pin, a large mixing bowl, a small mixing bowl, cooling rack, a fork.

Ingredients:

2.5 cups wholewheat flour + some extra flour to dust the board while rolling the dough

125 ml warm water (you should be able to comfortably hold your finger in the water)

25-30 ml water @r.t.

3 tsp sugar

3 tsp active dry yeast

4 tbsp olive oil + 2 tsp extra to grease the dough

1.5 tsp sea salt

Method:

Activate the yeast – take 125 ml warm water and add the sugar & yeast. Mix well. Cover and set aside for 10 mins without disturbing it, to let the yeast bloom. If it doesn’t bloom, discard & start again. Don’t compromise this step.

Wholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipeWholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipe

To make the dough – take the flour in a bowl, add salt and oil. Next add all the bloomed yeast mixture in one go. Start mixing them altogether using your fingers. At first the dough will be sticky but it will come together with 3-5 mins of kneading. Add 25 ml of water and keep kneading until you have a smooth dough. The more you knead, the better the dough shall rise! Grease the dough with 2 tsp oil and knead again for a 2-3 mins. Totally, you need to knead for about 15-20 mins. Cover with a kitchen towel and place it in a warm place for 45-60 mins to rise.

Wholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipe

image

Wholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipe

After 45 mins, this is what the dough looked like post the first rise. 

Wholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipe

Now, we punch the dough down and divide it into equals sized balls. Cover them again and let them rest for 30 mins for the second rise. The third picture below shows the size of the dough balls post the second rise.

Wholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipeWholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipeWholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipe

Preheat the oven for 10 mins at 200’c.

Now, dust the rolling board and the pin with some wholewheat flour and roll out the balls into a flatbread of about 3mm thickness and the diameter of about 6″-7″. Prick them well with fork as shown below.

imageWholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipe

Place the rolled dough on the baking tray and bake for 12-15 mins using both, upper & lower heating elements at 200’c to 210’c. (Please note every oven works differently so keep an eye on the pizza base, once it turns golden on the top side, take it out of the oven).

Once baked, cool the base on a cooling rack for 10 mins. Then apply pizza sauce & add other toppings and cheese and bake for another 10 mins or until the cheese melts. Enjoy!

If storing for future use, cool them completely, wrap them in cling wrap and refrigerate. Stays fresh for 2-3 days under refrigeration.

Wholewheat pizza base recipe Polkapuffs recipes Vegan pizza base recipe

Do try these out soon…you’ll love them!

Love,

Shreya💖

error: Content is protected !!