Monday, December 31, 2012

Ghee Cake

Hope some will be busy with New Year Celebrations and some will be busy in preparing some special food for this day.

From my side, a pound cake style ghee cake is coming for you all for this new year. I have bookmarked this cake recipe when Reshmi posted a picture in facebook even before she posted the recipe in her blog. The texture of the cake in her picture was simply pulled me in. Once you start baking, you might love the aroma of the ghee which spreads out in the entire kitchen.

I halved the recipe and prepared it last week. Every one at home loved it and I need to beg each of them to save some slices for taking the photograph. After a very quick photo shoot, all the slices have gone in no time. :-)

Hope you also enjoy this cake like how we enjoyed it! Happy New Year 2013!!!

Basic Information:

Preparation Time: 15 minutes

Cooking Time: 50 minutes

Makes: 8 slices


All purpose flour / Maida / Plain flour - 1 cup

Baking powder - 1/2 teaspoon

Baking soda - 1/4 teaspoon

Pure Ghee / Clarified butter - 1/2 cup

Powdered Sugar - 1/2 cup

Eggs - 2 nos, large size, yellow and white separated

Milk - 1/4 cup

Granulated sugar - 1 tablespoon

Vanilla essence - 1/2 teaspoon


1) You need 2 small and 1 large mixing bowls for this recipe.

2) Preheat the oven to 375F(175C) for 10-15 minutes. Grease the loaf tin or round or square cake tin with butter or ghee then dust it with flour. Keep it aside.

3) Take first small mixing bowl and sift all purpose flour, baking soda and baking powder. Make sure there are no lumps. Keep it aside.

4) In large mixing bowl, beat together the ghee and powdered sugar until the mixture is creamy and fluffy. Add one egg yellow at a time(Save the egg white in another small mixing bowl) and beat in between after each addition.

5) Add the flour and milk alternately, beginning and ending with flour to this mixture.

6) Now take the second mixing bowl in which we saved egg white. Beat well. Gradually add 1 tablespoon sugar and vanilla essence and continue beating until stiff.

7) Fold this mixture with ghee cake batter in the large bowl.

8) Pour this batter to the prepared cake tin and bake it for 50-55 minutes or tooth pin inserted into it comes out clean. My cake was done in 30 minutes itself with top and bottom heating.

9) Cool it for sometime and transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely.

10) Slice and serve.


1) I did all the above preparation using hand whisk(without an electrical beater) and still the outcome of the cake was good.

2) Try to use pure ghee for this cake for perfect aroma of the cake. In clarified butter, you might miss this aroma.

3) My cake was perfectly done in just 30 minutes. So watch you oven after 30 minutes while you bake this cake.

Six Key Questions to Sniff Out Bad Contractors (Complete Interview with Shawn Kruse)

By Lee Nelson | Yahoo! Homes – Tue, Oct 30, 2012 1:18 PM EDT - Getting antsy to remodel your home? You might think your kitchen or bathroom needs a remodel right this minute, but remember: Haste makes waste.
Rather than rushing to hire the first - or even cheapest - contractor you come across, asking the right questions upfront will help you filter out the bad apples and find a reputable contractor to meet your needs.
"I want my clients to feel 100 percent comfortable with me," says Shawn Kruse, president of the Remodeling Contractors Association of Connecticut and owner of Kruse Home Improvement, LLC. "And honestly, the more investigation they do about me and questions they ask me, the better it is for me. It helps me get the job."
As Kruse points out, a thorough investigation can benefit both parties in the end. "Potential clients learn about your credentials, background and experience. They start to get to know you and see if your personalities can get along," Kruse acknowledges.
You may know exactly what you want out of your remodel - from the fixtures to the flooring - but you should know what you want from your contractor, too. Don't settle for the first or cheapest bid. Your contractor will control the project - and probably your stress level - from start to finish, so it's important the two of you are a good match.
If you want to find a contractor who suits your needs, try asking these six questions during the interview.

Question #1: What's Your Business History (and Much More)?

You wouldn't hire a surgeon without knowing how many surgeries he or she has performed, would you? Well, your home is about to go under the knife, so you'll want to evaluate contractors with the same level of scrutiny.
Kruse suggests first asking questions about a company's business practices and experiences with the remodeling project you need. Find out what kind of procedures and rules this contractor would follow to meet your demands.
Here are a few other things Kruse thinks you should ask contractors:
  • How long have you been in business?
  • Are you licensed by the state?
  • What percentage of your clientele is repeat or referral business?
  • Are you a member of a national trade association?
  • Do you have a list of references from past projects similar to mine?
  • Have you or your employees been certified in remodeling or had any special training or education?
Kruse also recommends contacting a client with whom they are currently working. "This way, you can see how things are conducted on a day to day basis," he says. "You can find out if there are problems or issues that have arisen, and ask how well they communicate throughout the project."

Question #2: Do You Provide a Detailed Written Contract?

Misunderstandings happen. People forget. Things change. But a contract helps both you and the contractor know what is expected from both parties.
Every job, no matter how small, should have a signed contract by the contractor and customer, Kruse says. Seems like a no-brainer, right? Not so fast - the devil is in the details.
"A contract should be very specific and point out step by step what will be going on throughout the project and before it even begins," he adds.
Some things that should be on a contract - all written in great detail - include:
  • Names, addresses, and phone numbers of all parties involved in the project, including vendors
  • Detailed list of the work to be completed
  • List of each product along with its price and model number
  • Who is responsible for pulling permits
  • Where deliveries will go and where the dumpster will be placed
  • What time the workers begin and end their day
  • Project's start and completion dates plus payment schedule
  • All work carried out by subcontractors
Anything that changes along the way must be written and signed in a change order, which makes sure everyone is in agreement on the change, price, time, or anything else that is adjusted from the original contract.

Question #3: How Much Do I Need to Put Down?

If the contractor asks you to pay for all of the project's cost upfront, it's time to find another contractor. An unreasonable deposit is the first sign something is fishy, Kruse says.
The Better Business Bureau's website suggests going by the rule of thirds: Pay one third at the beginning of the project, one third when work is 50 percent complete, and one third after it is final and you are satisfied with the outcome.
But chances are your contractor will have a formula to determine how much money is needed to get the job started. "Most contractors go with a 15 percent down payment on larger projects," Kruse says. "My clients usually give me the 15 percent deposit at the same time they hand me the signed contract."
Keep in mind that if the job is a small one, it's okay to provide money for the cost of materials - which might be 50 percent of the job or a little more, he says.

Question #4: Can I Get Itemized Price Estimates?

Some contractors like to hand you a bid with one price estimate for the entire project because it's less work on their end. Don't let them. You will need details on all the costs associated with the project and each item purchased.
Here's why an itemized estimate is essential: If midway through the project you decide to put in a less expensive countertop than the one originally discussed, you need to know the exact cost of the first countertop. Without it, you have no way of knowing how much of a credit you should receive. An itemized price list should detail the cost of labor, demolition, materials, electrical, plumbing, permits, and more.
Kruse explains how an itemized estimate is better for client and contractor: "It just makes it easier to track work, and it's transparent to both the client and I of what is expected on the job. I also offer my preferred vendor list to our clients so they know who we are buying their products from."
Some contractors use their estimates as proposals, but these might be very inaccurate and could mislead the homeowner, Kruse says. Don't assume anything. Be certain that once you sign a contract, what you see on paper is what you will be paying.

Question #5: Who Will Be at the Site?

Just hiring your contractor doesn't ensure he or she will be the one hammering and sawing. They might only show up to sign the contract and present the finished product. It's important to know that certain contractors manage their companies by getting bids or supervising many job sites at once and are not hands-on people.
How do you find out which one you have? "Ask potential contractors who is going to be in charge of your project at all times," Kruse says. "You need to meet with that person, get a feel for what he/she is like and get acquainted a bit. Go check out that person at one of their current jobs."
In their "Home Sweet Home Improvement" guide, the Federal Trade Commission urges homeowners to ask if subcontractors will be used on the project. If so, homeowners should ask to meet them to make sure they have insurance coverage and proper licenses.
When meeting the subcontractor, ask if the lead contractor pays them on time. Why is this little detail important? According to the Federal Trade Commission, "A 'mechanic's lien' could be placed on your home if your contractor fails to pay subcontractors or suppliers," who, in turn, could take you to court to retrieve their unpaid bills.

Question #6: Do You Think We Can Get Along?

Just like any good relationship, the one between you and your contractor should have harmony, communication, and collaboration. Some personalities and styles just don't mesh, so don't pick someone just because their bid is the lowest, says Kruse.
Your contractor will be part of your daily existence for quite some time. They will see how your children behave, how you don't water your plants, and how your breakfast dishes sit in the sink all day.
Hiring a contractor without much thought can be a big mistake, says Kruse. "Sometimes [homeowners] end up with work that is less than adequate, or they give these shady contractors a large chunk of money upfront and then they never show up again."
Protecting yourself from these nightmares means knowing exactly who your contractors are before you hire them. After all, it doesn't hurt to ask - but it sure could hurt if you don't.


Irish Soda Tutti Fruity Bread and HaPpY NeW YeAr 2013


May this new year bring loads and loads of happiness in everyone's life. 

I bough this tutti fruity with a plan to make a cake. But for a second I thought always I make the cake, but this time I need to make something different and something lite, and another reason being that I am hosting an event called as "Healthy Recipe Substitution" HRS Event  and this recipe will be a good fit for the same. I do have a surprise gift at the end of the event too. So hoping that this recipe and as well as the giveaway will help other bloggers to participate and keep it healthy. :)

Well to talk a little bit about the substitute I used.....the recipe called for 4 cups of All purpose flour, I substituted half of the flour with Whole Wheat Flour. I am sure that all other ingredients in this recipe are a healthy substitute as well.

1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
2. In a large mixing bowl, add all purpose flour and whole wheat flour, baking soda orange zest and sugar and mix once.

3. Now add small cubes of the cold butter, and mash the butter with your fingers along with the flour mixture, so that the flour becomes little crumbly, as the butter is very less the crumbles wont be so noticeable.
4. In a small bowl lightly beat the egg, add butter milk to it and whisk it once.
5. Add the buttermilk and egg mixture into the flour and mix it with a hand mixer on low to medium until well blended.

6. In another bowl add the tutty fruity and the extra flour and with a fork lightly mix it so that all the tutty fruity is well coated with the flour.
7. Now add this to the flour dough and just fold it until mixed.
8. Line a baking sheet, or a loaf pan (I used a square oven safe bowl), coat it with little butter and flour, add the dough and even it out.

9. Bake it for about 45 to 50 mins or until a tooth pick inserted in middle of the bread comes out clean and the top of the bread has turned slightly golden brown.
10. Remove it from oven allow it to cool for 5 to 10 mins, slide a knife along the sides of the bowl and remove the bread by turning it upside down to a wire rack and again turning the bread to face the top.

11. Now slice it according to your choice and you can eat it as it is or spread a little bit butter and enjoy.

Linking this recipe to my Event: "Healthy Recipe Substitution" HRS Event

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Sunday, December 30, 2012

2012 - A Flashback!!

I had been wanting to do this "Best Of" post for every milestone in my blog. But somehow could not get into doing it. Srivalli's post on Best of 2012 event motivated me to look back at 2012 - the year that was. Completing two years of blogging this month I thought this is the best time to do it.

Favorite Post
Nothing was more sweeter and beautiful than my dear blog buddies' lovely gesture for

Saturday, December 29, 2012


Human atrocities of every kind, in every country, every day, and soon one  develops a numb shield  to stop responding to the daily horrors - and quickly move on  looking  for the happier parts of life. 

Then comes the next story so ghastly, that it breaks down the armour in a second, and evokes such strong emotions of every kind.

This post is a personal note to not forget, and not let her death go in vain.

This write up voices well what we feel

Prayers for change and a safer world.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Ulundhu Kali / Uddi Sankatti / Rice Urid Dal Kali

Today is Thiruvadhirai day. Woke up early and prepared thiruvadhirai kali to offer to Lord Shiva. Thiruvadhirai is a festival that popular among the Hindu community in Tamil Nadu and Kerala, the two southern states of the Indian subcontinent. It comes on the full moon day of the Tamil month of Margazhi (around December-January) and also on the day of adhirai star.

Thiruvadhirai = Thiru + Adhirai. Adhirai is Lord Shiva's birth star and thiru is is added to it to give a sacred feeling. (which gives the meaning of 'holy' or 'sacred'). This day is also called as Aruthraa Dharshanam. On his birthday, Kali (rice and dal mixed paste), Adai (rice pancakes) and Curry with 7 vegetables will be offered to him.

I am sure every home will be preparing their own version of thiruvadhirai kali. We usually prepare Ulundhu kali(Ulunthan kali) on this day.

Apart from this special occasion, we prepare this kali for breakfast at our home. Due to its protein rich health benefits, it is being served to girls after they attain the age(puberty) to strengthen their back bones.

We usually mix both the rice flour and urid dal flour of equal quantity to make this kali. I always have this flour mixture at home to prepare it often. So I have skipped the picture for it, but I have explained it briefly below.

Basic Information:

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Serves: 2 persons


For Making Rice and Urid Dal Flour Mixture:

Raw rice / Pacharisi - 2 cups

Urid dal / Ulutham paruppu- 2 cups

For Making Kali:

Rice and Urid dal flour mixture - 3/4 cup

Jaggery - 1/2 cup (See notes)

Water - 3 cups

Gingerly oil / Sesame oil - 2 tablespoons

Whole cardamom / Cardamom powder - 1/4 teaspoon (Optional)

Dry ginger powder / Sukku powder - 1/4 teaspoon (Optional)

Salt - a pinch


For Making Rice and Urid Dal Flour Mixture:

1) Take equal quantity of rice and urid dal. No need to roast it.

2) Make a smooth powder of it using the mixer/food processor.

3) Store it in a air tight container and use it whenever you need to prepare kali.

For Making Kali:

1) Mix Jaggery, cardamom and dry ginger powder with 1 cup of water in a saucepan and heat it. Once the jaggery dissolved, filter it to remove the impurities. Keep it aside.

2) Take a heavy bottom wide pan and mix remaining water and flour together. Make sure not to form any lumps. As I don't have any heavy bottom pan with me, I used pressure cooker bottom without lid.

3) Keep this in flame and stir continuously using a long spatula.

4) When the flour mixture slightly thickens, add the filtered jaggery to it.

5) Keep stirring continuously till it reaches thick smooth consistency. Whenever the flour mixture sticks to the sides of the pan, pour a teaspoon of oil and stir it.

6) Add the remaining oil before turning the flame off if any.

7) Serve hot.


1) Increase or decrease the sugar as per your taste.

2) I added karupatti vellam* to prepare this recipe.You can add any type of vellam to make this recipe.

*Mandai vellam - Jaggery made from sugarcane, has more sweet

*Karupatti vellam - Jaggery made from palm wine, has less sweet compared to mandai vellam

3) Addition of cardamom and ginger powder are optional.

4) Use gingerly oil or sesame oil for authentic taste.

Kaalu Uppittu - Broken Rice And Field Beans Upma


Once again it is Kaalu season! The  Kaalu obsession has taken over the  fanatics and  we love to exploit its flavour  in as many dishes as possible till the season lasts. I always wonder about how this simple and shiny green  bean is capable of lending a magical  aroma to any and every dish it touches! Even a simple straight forward Akki Uppittu is elevated to a  star status when a handful of  Kaalu is thrown in while cooking!



Raw rice - 1 cup 
Cumin seeds - 1 tbsp 
Field beans / Kaalu ( cooked till tender but not mushy) - 3/4 cup 
Fresh grated coconut - 4 tbsps 
Salt - 1 tsp 
Sesame oil - 3 tbsps 
Mustard seeds - 1 pinch 
Black gram dal - 1 tsp 
Bengal gram dal - 1 tsp 
Broken red chillies - 3 
Asafoetida - 1 pinch 
Curry leaves - a few 


1. Dry grind raw rice using a mixer till it resembles Semolina. 
2. Add the cumin seeds and run the mixer for another 10 seconds. 
3. Heat the sesame oil in a heavy bottomed pan or kadai
4. Add mustard seeds. 
5. When the mustard seeds splutter add both the dals and fry till they turn golden in colour. 
6. Add broken red chillies, lower the heat and roast till the chillies become crisp. 
7. Add asafoetida followed by curry leaves and the cooked field beans.
8. Saute for two minutes and then add three cups of water, fresh coconut gratings, and salt to the seasoning and increase flame. 

9. When the water starts boiling, gently add the broken rice and cumin seeds mixture.


10. Keep stirring till the broken rice is cooked and all the water is absorbed. 

11. When the cooked Kaalu Uppittu comes together reduce flame and cover it with a lid. 
12. Switch off flame when it is thoroughly done.

Enjoy the flavoursome Kaalu Uppittu as it is, or with any pickle of your choice, and a cup of thick curd.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Mom’s Chicken Biriyani

Mary and Jesus

By mid-December, I feel deeply vexed by the commercialism that threatens to swallow up Christmas. To cope, I meditate on places that are deeply meaningful to me: my parent’s kitchen, a friend’s comfy couch, a peaceful aisle at the public library. I also ponder places beyond my reach. High on that list is my grandma Amachi’s prayer room. 


Counting all the family trips we took to India and the one time she visited the states, I spent a year with Amachi at most. She was a boxy woman with soft, doughy cheeks. When anyone leaned in for a kiss, she gently inhaled as if trying to breath in their essence. Like other women of her generation, Amachi fastened her hair in bun and wore a white chatta and mundu which seemed to glow when she moved about her kitchen and other dimly-lit spaces.

Rice pilaf - 5

Since Amachi never learned English and I spoke Malayalum like a toddler (‘patti’ (dog), ‘poocha’ (cat), ‘kozhi’ (chicken)) our communication rarely involved words. We pantomimed. We nodded. We laughed. We frowned. 

Spicy Chicken - 1

During our trips, I came to know Amachi best by observing her gentle, rhythmic ways in the kitchen and watching her undetected in the prayer room. By mid-afternoon, she began boiling water for tiffin. Around 4 p.m., she covered a section of the expansive table she had used to nourish 14 children with perfectly steamed plantains, unda rolled from avalose podi, and hot, milky tea. Even now, when I eat a ripe plantain I think of the safety of her kitchen
Spicy Chicken -5

Amachi’s prayer room was the size of a walk-in closet. It had a Syrian Christian cross (with curly ends) and a large statute of Mother Mary with the Christ child, arms open wide. On occasion, I walked by it at night, having misplaced a book or a hairbrush. In shadowy light, produced by the bouncing of candles, I would see Amachi’s outline: head bowed, hands clasps, lips moving in prayer. 

layer with nuts

Mom's Chicken Biriyani

Serves 6 to 8

Biriyani is a richly-flavored Muslim dish commonly prepared with lamb or mutton in Kerala. We always serve it at Christmas (swapping in chicken) and for other meaningful occasions. The ingredient list is admittedly long, but friends that’s what it takes to eat like a Mughal Empress.

final shot

For rice:

½ cup butter
10 cardamom pods
10 cloves
1 (2-inch) cinnamon stick
2 onions, finely chopped
2 cups basmati rice
4 cups water
Pinch saffron
1 tablespoon lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon salt

For chicken:

3 tablespoons coriander
1 tablespoon fennel
1/8 teaspoon turmeric

8 cardamom pods
10 cloves

3 teaspoons canola oil
1 cup finely chopped onions
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2½ teaspoon minced ginger
1 medium jalapeno, cut in half lengthwise

1 (2-inch) cinnamon stick
¾ cup chopped tomatoes
1 pound chicken, preferably bone-in
3 tablespoons yogurt

1/3 cup water
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon lemon juice

For garnish:

3 tablespoons butter
½ cup thinly sliced onions
¼ cup roughly chopped cashew nuts
3 tablespoons raisons


For rice:

Soak rice in water for 30 minutes. Rinse until water becomes clear. Drain. 

Melt butter in a medium-sized saucepan over medium-low heat. Add cardamom pods, cloves, and cinnamon. Cook for 1 minute.

Stir in onions and cook until they just begin to caramelize, about 10 minutes. 

Add rice and stir to coat it with butter. Cook, stirring frequently, until rice granules separate and begin to look opaque.

Add water, lemon juice, salt, and saffron, pinching it to release its essential oils. Stir. Bring to a boil. 

Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook until rice is tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Do not stir rice while it is cooking. 

For chicken:

Blend coriander, fennel, turmeric, cardamom pods, and cloves in a spice grinder.

Place onions, garlic, ginger, jalapeno, cinnamon, tomatoes, chicken, yogurt, water, salt, lemon juice, and ground spices in in medium-sized stockpot or a Dutch oven. Stir together. 

Cover and cook on medium-low heat until chicken flakes when pulled with a fork, about 20 to 25 minutes. If there is more than 1/3 cup of gravy, remove chicken and reduce it to 1/3 cup. 

For garnish:

Heat 2 tablespoons of butter in a small skillet over medium-low heat. 

When it melts, add onions and cook until they begin to caramelize. Transfer to a bowl. 

Melt the remaining tablespoon butter and add cashews and raisons. Cook until cashews turn golden, stirring frequently.

You’re almost there (!):

Place a layer of rice in a large casserole dish (or one medium-sized casserole dish and a small casserole dish). Remove cardamom pods, cloves, and cinnamon stick. 

Top with a layer of chicken. 

Add another layer of rice, removing the rest of the cardamom pods and cloves. 

Add another layer of chicken.

Top with cashews, raisons, and onions. 

Bake at 400 degrees for an hour. 

Serve with cucumber tomato salad and lentil wafers.

Thaalagam - Winter Vegetables In A Spicy Gravy


It is late December and the Kaalu frenzy has started! Here Kaalu/ field beans mingles with other winter vegetables and transforms into a delicious and flavoursome dish called Thaalagam.
Thaalagam is another version of Yezhu Kari Koottu which is prepared along with Thiruvaadirai Kali.


Sesame seeds - 4 tbsps
Split Black gram dal - 4 tbsps
Raw rice - 2 tsps
Fenugreek seeds - 1/4 tsp 
Pepper - 1/4 tsp
Red chillies - 8
Asafoetida - 1 pinch
Fresh grated coconut OR Dry coconut(Copra) gratings - 4 tbsps


1.Dry roast sesame seeds in a pan and remove it into a dry plate.
2. Heat a drop of oil in the same pan and add split black gram dal, rice, fenugreek seeds, pepper and red chillies.
3.Roast till golden in colour and add asafoetida.
4. Remove the roasted ingredients on to a plate when you get a pleasant aroma.
5. Add fresh coconut gratings to the same pan and roast on low flame till golden in colour.
( Dry coconut and sesame seeds are a flavoursome combination. If you are using copra instead of fresh coconut gratings, there is no need to roast the same.)
6. Cool the roasted ingredients and grind with roasted coconut gratings / copra into a moderately smooth powder.


Pumpkin - 1/4 kg
Field beans / kaalu - 2 cups
Broad beans/ Avarakkai( Chopped ) - 2 cups
Choyate / Chowchow ( peeled and chopped ) - 2 cups
Carrots ( peeled and chopped ) - 2 cups
Baby eggplants - 12
Taro - 12
Tamarind - The size of a plum
Powdered jaggery (Optional) - 1/4 tsp.
Salt - 2 tsps
Turmeric powder - 1 pinch
Sesame oil - 1 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves - a few.


1. Wash, peel and chop Pumpkin, Carrots and Choyate into big cubes.
2. String the Flat beans and chop them.
3. Remove the stalk and slit the Eggplants lengthwise into four taking care not to separate them at the bottom.
4. Wash and cook Taro till done, peel and dice into thick pieces.
5. Soak tamarind in warm water and extract the juice and keep aside.
6. Wash Kaalu and cook with Carrots with enough water.
7. When half done add Choyate and Flat beans and continue to cook adding more water if necessary.
8. After a while add the Pumpkin and the Eggplants.
9. When the Pumpkin is half done add tamarind juice, salt, turmeric powder and jaggery if you are using it.
10. Cook till all the vegetables are done and then add the cooked and diced Taro. Do not allow the vegetables to become mushy.

11. Mix Thaalagam powder with little water and blend the paste into the vegetables.
12. Switch off flame when the Thaalagam thickens.
13. Heat sesame oil splutter the mustard seeds and add the curry leaves.
14. Pour the seasoning over the Thaalagam.

Enjoy the delicious and flavoursome Thaalagam with Thiruvaadirai Kali after offering them to Lord Shiva.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas Cake Santa ( Aryati )

Ini pesenannya Aryati, temen kantor seberang..Heheheh. Duh kali ini malah ngerepotiin Ar ambil pesenannya ke rumah aku. Thanks ya Ar buat pengertiannya..Thanks juga buat pesenannya..

Merry Christmas 2012

Christmas Spritz Cookies / Swedish Butter Cookies / Pressed Butter Cookies

Merry Christmas to All!! : )

Well this Christmas is totally an "On Demand" from my son starting my asking to decorate the Christmas tree, wanting to go to see Santa and we did see a real Reindeer too :), and finally to his area....wanted Christmas and Snow flake cookies. As always, it was so tempting to make those green tree cookies, but the fact that I have to use lot of food color, I didn't want to. So I explained to Anush that it takes a lot of food color which is not ideally good for healthy, he agreed with adding Sprinkles. We bought a Cookie Gun to make things easy, and it had the tree and snow flake shaped mold plate, so I used that to make my cookies. 
I used "Spritz" Cookies recipe, which is also known as "Swedish Butter Cookies" or "Pressed Butter Cookies". These cookies are very popular Christmas cookies, and this kind of dough is used especially if you are using a cookie gun/press.

So here is the recipe....

1 cup Unsalted Butter (room temperature)
1/2 cup Sugar
1 large Egg
1 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
2 1/4 cups All Purpose Flour
1/4 tsp Salt

1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
2. In a large mixing bowl, add all purpose flour, sugar, salt and butter and mix until blended.

3. Now add vanilla extract and egg and mix until well blended.
4. Fill the cookie batter in the cookie gun/press with the desired mold plate fitted, and press to cookies on a cookie sheet, with enough space between cookies.

5. Now add sprinkles of your choice and you can also wait until they bake and then add icing over the cookies.
6. Bake these cookies for about 7-8 mins or until the corners of the cookies turn slightly golden brown.

7. Remove these cookies on top of a wire rack and let them cool.
8. Sore these cookies in an air tight container.

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