Saturday, February 28, 2015

Coconut whole wheat cookies

The moment I started baking cookies at home ,my son preferred home baked cookies than the store brought ones.This excited me a lot and made to try different  varieties of cookies.I try my best to bake cookies using whole wheat flour or oats or millets compared to their less healthy counterpart maida or all purpose flour .These cookies were super crunchy with a  nice coconut flavour. I like my cookies to be thin but you can make it a bit thick according to your need and like .It is perfect for gifting someone on a special occasion or festival .Believe me, nobody will  know that these cookies were made of whole wheat flour,as it will be super tasty and crunchy.

Makes:30 thin cookies
Preparation time:45 mins

Ingredients :

Whole wheat flour-1 cup
Butter-1/2 cup
Dedicated coconut -1/2 cup
Powdered sugar-1/2 cup
Baking powder-1/4 tsp


1.Preheat the oven to 175 C .cream the butter and powdered sugar to a creamy consistency in a bowl.

2.Add the whole wheat flour and the baking powder to the butter and sugar mixture and mix well.

3.Finally add the desiccated coconut and mix well to a pliable dough.

4.Take a small portion of the cookie dough and roll in to a ball and flatten on a cookie tray (if aluminum grease and keep it ready).Use a fork and press it to get the below pattern.

5.Bake them for 18-20 mins at 175 C or until the bottom of the cookie is golden brown.The cookie will be soft when hot but after it cools down it becomes very crispy.Enjoy it with your favorite beverage .


* You can use ghee or clarified butter instead of butter.
* The amount of sugar was right for me but you can adjust it according your wish.
* You can add crushed nuts for an added flavour and texture.
* Baking time might differ from oven to oven .so watch out till the bottom of the cookies are golden brown.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Tomato Pulao

This is yet another nice variety which I make regularly for lunch and ideal for lunchbox .The tomato pulao also comes handy whenever I run out of vegetables or when I return from a 2 or 3 days trip,as I have onions and tomatoes always .The tomato pulao when paired up with a simple onion raita or a potato fry tastes awesome and heavenly.To get the bright red color I puréed the tomatoes but you can add finely chopped tomatoes also.

Preparation time:20 minutes


Basmati rice -1 cup
Tomatoes-3 no
Chopped onion-1 big
Slit green chillies-2
Chilli powder-1 tsp
Turmeric powder-1/2 tsp
Garam masala-1/2 tsp
Coriander leaves-togarnish
Salt -to taste
Oil-2 tbsp 

To be grind to a fine paste:
Garlic-4 pods
Ginger-1 inch
Saunf/fennel seeds-1/2 tsp

To temper:
Bay leaves-3
Cinnamon-1 inch stick
Green cardamoms-2


1.Soak the basmati rice in 1 and 1/2 cups of water for 20 mins.Grind the ingredients for grinding to a fine paste.

2.Heat oil in a pan and add the tempering ingredients and then add the ground paste.

3.Once it is sautéed well add the slit green chillies and chopped onions .Then add the chilli powder,turmeric powder and salt.

4.Then add the puréed tomatoes and fry well till the tomatoes are cooked.then add the soaked basmati rice along with the water and transfer it to the pressure cooker.

5.Add the chopped coriander leaves and garam masala and pressure cook for 2 whistles.

6.Serve the tomato pulao hot with raita or potato roast.


* You can add green peas to make it look colorful and attractive for kids.
*Soaking of basmati rice helps in getting a  long grain after cooking.
*Add mint leaves for an enhanced flavour.I didnt add it as I ran out of mint leaves.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Eggless Vanilla Sponge Cake

After I got my new oven ,making a cake was one of my top priorities but due to some or the other reason it remained pending till now.My husband loves cakes and he wanted a tea cake or a plain sponge cake that would ideal for a snack in the evening and comparatively less in calories. After a lot of googling I came across an eggless version of Nita Mehta 's vanilla cake and with its simple ingredients I wanted to try it for this Valentine's Day.It came out pretty awesome,super soft and moist.

I wanted to bake it in a heart shaped tin but after searching all the supermarkets nearby I was not lucky to find one ,so I went ahead with the round container (small) which I had and baked the cake .as the tin was small ,I poured a small amount of batter in to two cupcake moulds as well and the cupcakes were  a total hit and my son finished them as soon as I baked it.This cake can also be used as a base for birthday cakes.As I wanted it to be a tea cake I didn't do any icing and just decorated it with few colorful sprinkles.

Serves :3
Preparation time:50 mins


All purpose flour/maida-1 and 1/2 cups
Sugar-3/4 cup
Plain yogurt/thick curd-1 cup
Cooking oil(odour less)-1/2 cup
Baking powder-1 1/4 tsp
Baking soda-1 tsp
Vanilla essence-1 1/2 tsp


1.PreHeat the oven at 200 C for 10 minutes.Sieve the all purpose flour and keep it aside.

2.Beat the yogurt and sugar together till the sugar gets dissolved and the mixture is smooth.

3.Add the baking powder and the baking soda and keep this mixture aside till small bubbles form in the mixture.

4.Add the vanilla essence and oil to this mixture and mix well.

5.Now add the all purpose flour little by little and keep mixing till you get a creamy dough.You can use cut and fold method but avoid over beating mixture as it takes away the aeration in the mixture.

6.Pour the cake mixture in to a greased tin.Make sure the mixture fills half of the cake mould giving enough space for the cake to rise while baking.bake the cake at 200C for 10 mins and at 175 C for 30-35 mins until the tooth pick inserted in it comes out clean.

Allow the cake to cool for 20-30 mins and then cut the slices.stays well for upto 2 days at room temperature and for upto 4 days when refrigerated.


*Make sure the yogurt or curd is very thick .i used the milky mist curd as it is can also use homemade curd which is thick.
*The cake may crack in middle of the container is very small or if there is too much of baking powder.
*The amount of sugar was just right for a tea cake or for a sponge cake which can be used as a base for icing.If you are sweet toothed then increase the sugar to 1 cup.
*You can add nuts or tutti fruti or chocochips to the batter for a variation. 

Monday, February 9, 2015

Spinach sweet corn pulao

Fresh spinach in the refrigerator gives you a lot of options to cook with.this time I decided to make a pulao with spinach.Usually I make either hara bhara pulao with spinach so I wanted to try something different and I had some sweet corn kernels also.Voila ! Spinach Sweet Corn Pulao.Its simple to make and yet very delicious and ideal for any party or as a lunch box menu.with the goodness of spinach it makes a wholesome meal. Even kids will love it as sweet corn is added to this pulao .My son loved it and urged me to make it again . 

Preparation time:30 mins

Basmati rice-2 cups
Chopped Spinach -2 cups(packed tightly)
Sweet corn-50 gms
Chopped onion- 1 big
Chopped tomato-1 
Green chillies-1 or 2 slit lengthwise
Chilli powder-1 tsp
Turmeric powder-1/2 tsp
Oil-2 tbsp
Ghee-1 tbsp
Chopped coriander leaves -2 tbsp
Chopped mint leaves -2 tbsp
Kasuri methi -1 tbsp
Garam masala-1/2 tsp
Salt-to taste

To grind to a fine paste:
Small onions-9
Ginger-1 inch 
Garlic-4 pods

To temper:
Bay leaves-2
Cinnamon -2 one inch sticks


1.Wash and soak the basmati rice in 3 cups of water for 20 mins.

2.Grind the ingredients given above for grinding to a fine paste.

3. Heat oil and add the tempering ingredients.after a minute add the slit green chilli and onions and saute well .

4.Once the onions turn transparent add the ground paste and mix well till the raw smell goes off.Then add the turmeric powder,salt and chilli powder.

5.After it is done,add the tomatoes and saute well,followed by spinach,coriander and mint.

6.After the greens are sautéed well add the fresh sweet corn kernels,rice along with the water in which it is soaked .add kasuri methi and garam masala and pressure cook for 1 whistle.

7.The spinach sweet corn pulao is ready and serve hot with raita and papad.


*You can use boiled channa insteadof sweet   corn for a spinach channa pulao.
* You can avoid garam masala if you wish.
*When soaking basmati rice,instead of water you can substitute half of it with milk for a rich flavour and taste.