Strawberry and Yoghurt Parfait

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Use this recipe to whack someone who says, “Healthy food never tastes good” or “Delicious food can never be healthy”.

 

The high achieved out of creating something yum out of the seasonal favourite in under 5 minutes is supreme. What’s more, your calorie meter will be dancing with joy even after you scoff down 4-5 helpings of this at one go.

 

I dislike eating fruits (sounds ridiculous but it’s true) but still found myself surreptitiously adding more strawberry to my portion.

So if you’re the “Ew! Fruits!” type, then be prepared to get converted.

 

Also, the parfait looks like Christmas in a cup! Now who in their right mind would not like to have that?!

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INGREDIENTS: (for 4 servings)

  • Yoghurt (low-fat) : 2 cups
  • Fresh strawberries (chopped): 2 cup
  • Brown sugar:  2 tablespoons
  • Lemon juice: 1 tsp.
  • Digestive/ Diet cookies (crumbled): 2 cups
  • Low fat butter: 2 tbsps.
  • Toasted almond flakes: For garnishing

 

METHOD:

To create strawberry compote, put strawberries in a hot pan, sprinkle the sugar and drizzle lemon juice. Heat till the strawberries will start releasing juices and the mixture is sticky and bubbly.

 

Bash the cookies to crumbles and pour melted butter over it. Mix thoroughly.

 

To assemble:

Take a jar or a nice-looking glass container and start layering the elements. There is no rule as to what goes first so you can decide the order and number of the layers. I was out of toasted almond flakes but I usually sprinkle some as garnish and for a crunch.

 

Happy Winter!

 

 

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Chocolate Chip Cookies

Christmas is a-coming! And when the festive fever is in full swing, a batch of chocolate chip cookies never hurt anyone… unless you decided to hurl them at somebody (horrible joke, I know).

Also, cookies help you to get more friends. Just bake them, pack them, tie a ribbon on the box, dress up like an elf whilst handing them out and voila! You suddenly have new friends. Cancel the ‘dress-up-like-an-elf’ part, maybe.

A batch of gooey-centred, chocolate chip ones does the trick for me, Santa and 99.9% of the world population, I’m guessing.

There is a cookie monster inside each one of us, waiting to be unleashed.

Bake these cookies to test the aforementioned theory.

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For making new friends and a batch of rewardingly delicious Christmas Cookies, you will need:

  • Flour  – 2 ½ cups
  • Butter –  ½ cup
  • Sugar – 1 cup (powdered)
  • Demerara Sugar – 1 cup (powdered)
  • Egg – 1 (at room temperature) OR Soda Bicarb – 1 tbsp.
  • Melted Dark Chocolate – 125 gms.
  • Vanilla essence – 1 tsp
  • Baking powder – 1 tbsp.
  • Sea Salt – 1 tsp
  • Cocoa – 2 tbsps.
  • Dark Chocolate chips – 350 gms (preferably Belgian dark chocolate for richness)

METHOD:

  • Sift flour, sugar, Demerara sugar, baking powder, sea salt and cocoa together.
  • Beat butter with sugar till creamy. Then add the egg, melted chocolate, vanilla essence and mix.
  • Fold in the dry ingredients.
  • Add milk if the mixture is too dry.
  • Shape into tiny rounds and place them on a baking sheet about an inch away from each other.
  • Bake in a preheated oven at 180 degrees C for about 15 mins.
  • Cool them on a rack, dunk them in cold milk and munch away. Don’t forget to share them!

Crystal-Top Fruit Muffins

This recipe was actually the result of a fridge-tray full of peaches that threatened to go overripe. Some serious action needed to be taken. Thus, were baked the Crystal Top Fruit Muffins!

I used ripe peaches in this one but really, you can use any fruits or berries of your liking; strawberries (I tried these and they tasted divine in the muffin environment), blueberries, raspberries, mashed bananas, kiwis, your wish! Muffin World lies in your imagination!

This was one of my very firsts in bake-land, years before I even thought of the blog so there are no step-by-step pictures (there is a final picture of the muffins, though) but the yum-ness quotient ranks high. As they say, “the proof of the muffin lies in eating”. So go bake a batch and let me know how well they turn out!

Also, if it is your first attempt at baking, fear not! With all the different knobs and temperature settings, it may seem a little muddling at first but it feels therapeutic after a couple of times. Promise.

May the oven Gods be with you!

  1. DRY INGREDIENTS
  • All purpose flour: 1 + 3/4th cups
  • Baking powder: 1 tsp.
  • Powdered sugar: ½ a cup
  • Salt: a tiny pinch

2.   WET INGREDIENTS

  • Egg: 1
  • Vanilla extract or essence: 1 tsp.
  • Vegetable oil: ½ a cup
  • Milk: ½ a cup
  • Fruit: 1 cup (chopped)
  • Water: 2-3 tbsps.

Method:

First, sieve and mix all the dry ingredients together. Then make a well in the center and pour the wet ingredients. Mix thoroughly till the batter is lumpy and semi-liquid-y. Don’t try too hard to remove all the lumps, though. The mixture will come together eventually. Now, add the chopped fruit (whichever you like). I used chopped ripe peaches directly, without heating them, as they were already quite soft and mushy.

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Pour the batter into muffin moulds. I use the silicone ones because they are SO much easier to handle. Plus they come in fun pop colours. And now, for the awesome part – Before putting the muffins in the oven, sprinkle generous (and I mean generous) amounts of crystalline sugar on top of each muffin. The sugar, on baking, will form a crunchy crust-like top on the muffins and it is absolute heaven to bite into. So that is it! Piece of cake, right? Pop the muffins in the preheated oven @ 180 C for around 30-35 minutes.

Run when you hear the ‘ting!’ and bring them out. Enjoy with a mug of latte or a scoop of vanilla ice-cream if you’re feeling indulgent!