Mango Pulp Fruit Salad

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PREP TIME: 10 Minutes

COOKING TIME: No cooking!!!!!!!!!

Simple yet healthy (may be not completely healthy but who cares😂) mango pulp fruit salad is easy to put together if you are looking for a last-minute dessert. There is so many different varieties of mangoes that we can get during the mango season in India but here in Canada we do not get fresh sweet mangoes all the time. We do get it during summer but this year with the lock down we are not able to find sweet mangoes. I had a can of kesar mango pulp lying around in my pantry for while so decided to make this salad (the main reason being, the best before date was May 2020 so had to use it up). This would a super delicious treat for mango lovers or rather anyone🤩🥭

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Ingredients

Pear – 1 cup

Pineapple – 1 cup

Grapes – 25 to 30

Strawberries – 15 to 20 quartered

Mango pulp – 450 ml

Cashews – 10 (for garnish – optional)

Saffron strands – 1 pinch (for garnish – optional)

Procedure

STEP 1: Wash and cut all the fruits.

STEP 2: Add in the mango pulp and mix so the mango pulp gets evenly coated on all the fruit pieces.

STEP 3: Refrigerate for a couple of hours. Before serving garnish with few saffron strands and cashews or any nuts of your choice and serve

Delicious mango pulp fruit salad ready to serve!!! Enjoy!!!!

Tip: Any fruit can be used but adding different colored fruits make the salad look more colorful and appetizing

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Donuts

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PREP TIME: 15 Minutes

COOKING TIME: 10 Minutes

PROOFING Time: 3 hours

Donuts!!!!Yay!!!

I love donuts but avoid eating them often just so I do not look like a donut myself (A moment on the lips a lifetime on the hips…HaHaHa😄). We watched a cooking show on Netflix a couple of weeks ago “The great Canadian baking show” and since then we have been watching a lot of cooking videos especially baking recipes. In one of the episodes, the contestants had to make donuts so we saw a few recipes on making donuts so wanted to give it a try. I was not sure if it will come out good but still wanted to give it a shot and surprisingly it came out well. At least it looked nice, it was moist and tasted like the store-bought donuts (Not that I am boasting 😜)

Ingredients

All purpose Flour – 2 cups (470 ml)

Dry Yeast – 1 Teaspoon (5 ml)

Milk – ½ cup (120 ml)

Sugar – ¼ cup (60 ml) + 1 teaspoon (for yeast activation)

Salt – 1 pinch

Butter – 2 tablespoons (30 ml at room temperature)

Egg – 1

Ingredients – Sugar glaze

Icing Sugar – 2 teaspoons (10 ml)

Milk – 1 teaspoon (5 ml)

Ingredients – Chocolate topping

White chocolate chips – 30 chips

Dark chocolate – 30 chips

Sprinkles/coloured sugar – as required

Procedure

STEP 1: Add the yeast and sugar to lukewarm milk, mix well and keep it aside for 5 minutes for the yeast to activate. If the milk is too hot or cold the yeast will not activate, and the yeast activation is the key to get the right dough for donuts. I microwaved the milk for 30 seconds and that was sufficient for me to get the right temperature.

STEP 2: The yeast will turn foamy in 5 minutes like in the picture below.

STEP 3: In a mixing bowl add the flour, sugar, salt, butter and egg and mix. Once combined add in the milk-yeast-sugar mixture and knead well. The dough will be slightly stick and that is how it should be (if the dough is too dry, you can add little milk). I used the food processor, dough mode for 2 minutes to achieve the right consistency. See picture below. If kneading with hand, knead for about 7 – 10 minutes by stretching the dough.

STEP 4: Grease a large bowl with oil and add little oil on the dough so the dough does not get dry. Cover with a paper towel or lid and let it rest for about 2 hours or until the dough comes to double the size.

STEP 5: Once the proofing is complete, roll out the dough and cut into donut shapes. I used a container lid for the outer circle and the back of a piping nozzle for the inner circle. You could also use different sized cookie cutters.

STEP 6: Place all the donut dough in a tray and let it rest for about 15 – 20 minutes. This is the second level of dough proofing.

STEP 7: Heat oil in a pan and start frying the donuts in medium heat until it turns golden brown.

STEP 8: For the sugar glaze topping, mix the icing sugar and milk and dip the top of the donuts and place it on a plate.

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STEP 9: For the chocolate topping, in a microwave safe bowl add chocolate chips and microwave for 30 seconds or until the chocolate chips are completely melted. Dip one side of the donut in the melted chocolate and sprinkle with colored sugar, multicolored sprinkles, or chocolate chips. You can get creative here. I made a pattern on one of the donuts with white and dark chocolate.

Tip: For the effect in the below picture, coat with dark chocolate first and make 2 concentric circles with melted white chocolate on top and with a toothpick just make vertical lines/streaks from the middle of the donut to the outer edge of the donut.

Black Glutinous Rice Kheer – Kavanarisi Payasam (A Chettinad Delicacy)

PREP TIME: 5 Minutes

COOKING TIME: 20 Minutes

SOAKING TIME: 4 Hours

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Kavanarisi/Black glutinous rice is typically used to make desserts. Kavanarisi has a very special place in the breakfast menu in most Chettinad weddings and festivals. They use the rice to make a recipe like a pudding. The rich purple colour pudding gives a contrast in color and texture amongst other deep-fried savoury delicacies (a.k.a vellai paniyaram, kandharappam, masala cheeyam, etc. all high calorie, irresistible Chettinad dishes😉) in any festive menu. My mom used to make the kavanarisi payasam often. I tried making this recipe a few years ago, but was a flop. I was an amateur cook then (not that I am a professional now😉) and did not use the right proportion of rice to milk to achieve the desired consistency. I never attempted to try the recipe again until this Tamil New Year. As it was quarantine time, I wanted to try some new dessert and picked kavanarisi payasam. YAY!!!

I am glad I made this recipe. We loved it so much that we had so much of the dessert and skipped dinner that day (I served dessert before the meal😊)

Ingredients

Kavanarisi/Black Glutinous rice – 100 grams

Milk – 1 litre (I used whole milk)

Jaggery – 200 grams

Cardamom – 1

Cashews – 10 broken into small pieces

Salt – 1 pinch

Procedure

STEP 1: Wash and soak the rice for 4 hours. If you forgot to soak the rice, not to worry soak in hot water for 1.5 to 2 hours and pressure cook for additional 2 whistles. If using instant pot, add the soaked rice + 300 ml water. Use pressure cook mode and set to 3 minutes. Wait for natural pressure release (may take upto 15 minutes) or can immediately release the pressure.

STEP 2: Pressure cook the rice until soft (3 whistles, even if the rice is not too mushy it is okay as we will grind the rice). If using instant pot, skip this step.

STEP 3: Add the milk to a thick bottom pan and let the milk boil for about 10 minutes in medium heat. In the meantime, grind the cooked rice to a fine paste.

STEP 4: Add the ¾ of the rice paste to the milk and mix well.

STEP 5: Microwave the jaggery with 60 ml water for 5 minutes. Filter the melted jaggery, add the ¼ remaining cooked rice paste to the jaggery and add to the milk.

STEP 6: Let the rice-milk mixture cook for about 5 minutes. Add in the cashews, cardamom and salt. The payasam should not be too thick so turn off the heat when the payasam is still in a liquid consistency. If not, when the payasam cools down the consistency can be thick and gooey.

Enjoy this Chettinad treat 😊

Tip: Add ghee fried cashews instead of plain roasted cashews. Also, the jaggery can be replaced with 1/2 cup sugar as this recipe is typically made using sugar.

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Almond Drink – Badam Kheer

PREP TIME: 5 Mins for chopping nuts + Almonds soaking time 5 hours

COOKING TIME: 30 Minutes

 

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Ingredients

Almonds – ¼ cup or 30 soaked almonds (soak almonds for 5 hours or overnight)

Whole Milk – 1.25 liters

Sugar – ½ cup

Saffron – 15 strands

Chopped pistachios – 2 teaspoons

Chopped Almonds – 2 teaspoons

Salt – 1 pinch

Procedure

STEP 1: Boil the milk in a heavy bottom saucepan in low heat until it reduces to ½ the quantity. Keep stirring often so the milk doesn’t get burnt. This took about 25 minutes.

STEP 2: Peel the soaked almonds, add 2 tablespoons of the boiled milk and grind to a fine paste.

STEP 3: Add in the almond paste to the milk and mix well.

STEP 4: Now add sugar and saffron strands and cook for 5 more minutes. Add a pinch of salt and turn off the heat. Add very finely chopped/crushed pistachios and almonds.

STEP 5: Let the kheer cool down completely and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. (This can be served warm but the kheer tastes better when served cold😉)

STEP 6: Garnish with slivered almonds and pistachios on the top before serving.

TIP: Add cardamom powder to the mixture if you enjoy cardamom flavor.

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Instant Pot Banana Bread

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PREP TIME: 15 Minutes

COOKING TIME: 40 Minutes + 5 minutes

Ingredients

Banana – 3 mashed

All-purpose flour – 2 cups (470 grams)

Sugar – 1 cup (235 grams) – I have used ½ cup organic coconut sugar

Baking Soda – 1 teaspoon

Baking powder – 1 teaspoon

Salt – ½ teaspoon

Butter – ½ cup (120 grams)

Vanilla extract – 1 teaspoon

Eggs – 2

Nuts – 10 Walnuts chopped (I have used cashews as I did not have walnuts)

Oil/Butter – 1 teaspoon (to grease the pan)

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Procedure

STEP 1: Sift together the all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

STEP 2: Add sugar to the melted butter and mix well.

STEP 3: Add the eggs, mashed banana, and the vanilla extract.

STEP 4: Add the banana-egg-butter-vanilla extract mixture along with the chopped nuts to the flour and mix gently.

STEP 5: Grease a loaf pan or a stainless steel container with butter or oil. I have used a teaspoon of olive oil to grease the stainless steel container.

STEP 6: Transfer the banana mixture to the baking container and tap well.

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STEP 7: Turn on the instant pot and add 1 cup of water to the instant pot container.

STEP 8: In the stand/trivet (this accessory comes with the instant pot) place the baking container with the banana loaf mixture and close the instant pot lid. The trivet should be placed in the water.

STEP 9: The vent should be closed as shown in the picture below.

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STEP 10: Press the cake mode and hit start. By default, the cook time for cake is 40 minutes on high pressure.

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STEP 11: After 40 minutes release/vent out the pressure.

STEP 12: Remove the baking container from the instant pot and let it cool down for 5 minutes.

STEP 13: Gently flip the container and place it on a wire rack or a plate.

STEP 14: Gently tap the container to get the banana loaf out of the baking container.

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Banana Loaf is ready to be served:-)

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Pasta Payasam – elbow pasta – pasta kheer

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PREP TIME: 1 Hour

COOKING TIME: 25 Minutes

Ingredients

Elbow Pasta – 100 grams

Cashews – 10

Sugar – 150 grams

Almond paste – 5 teaspoons

Saffron – 15 strands

Cardamom – 1

Milk – 750 ml (3.8% fat)

Procedure

STEP 1: Soak 15 almonds in hot water for 1 hour, remove the skin, add 1 teaspoon of milk and make a fine paste.

STEP 2: Cook the pasta till it turns soft. Drain and run the pasta through cold water and keep it aside. (Optional: chop the pasta into smaller pieces)

STEP 3: In a deep pan add milk. Once the milk comes to boil add saffron strands and almond paste. Mix well and cook for 5 minutes.

STEP 4: Add the cooked pasta, sugar and cardamom. Cover the pan and cook for 10 minutes by stirring a couple of times in between to avoid the payasam from getting burnt.

STEP 5: Heat 2 teaspoons of ghee in a pan and fry the cashews till golden brown.

STEP 6: Add the roasted cashews, mix and turn off the heat. Once the mixture comes to room temperature, refrigerate and serve chilled.

TIP:   Instead of whole milk and sugar, sweetened condensed milk can be added.

 

 

 

 

3 Millets Kesari-Varagu-Samai-Thinai

 

 

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Prep Time – 5 Mins

 

Cooking Time – 20 Mins

Ingredients

Mixed millets – 240 grams (80 grams each of foxtail millet, little millet & Kodo millet)

Sugar – 12 teaspoons

Cashews – 10

Raisins – 10

Saffron – Few Strands

Ghee – 6 to 8 teaspoons

Cardamom – 1

Salt – 1 pinch

Water – 600 to 700 ml

Procedure

STEP 1: In a non-stick pan heat 2 teaspoons of ghee. Fry the cashews and raisins until golden brown. Remove cashews and raisins from pan and keep aside.

STEP 2: Wash the millets thoroughly, about 4 – 5 times and drain the water completely.

STEP 3: In the same pan that was used to fry the cashews, add 3 more teaspoons of ghee and add millets. Fry till the millets turn slightly brown.

STEP 4: Add water to the mixture and cover the pan. Wait till the millets turn soft but not mushy.

STEP 5: Open the lid, add saffron strands and cardamom. Add 12 teaspoons of sugar and keep stirring till the Kesari stops sticking to the pan (if required add 2 more teaspoons of ghee to avoid sticking). Add a pinch of salt at this stage.

STEP 6: Add the ghee fried cashews – raisins and mix well. Garnish with saffron and cashews before serving.

TIP: Millets Kesari tastes good when served hot or warm. The consistency of the Kesari will be different (hard) after a couple of hours microwave the Kesari before serving.

 

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Pazha Payasam – Mixed Fruits payasam – simple – dessert

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PREP TIME: 5 Mins

COOKING TIME: 25 Mins

Ingredients

Mixed fruit cocktail – 2 cans (398 ml/can containing peaches, pears, pineapples, grapes and cherries)

Fresh fruits (optional) – 1 cup (pear and grapes)

Sugar – 30 ml

Condensed Milk – 180 ml

Saffron – 15 strands

Milk – 500 ml (2% fat)

Almonds – 5 (for garnish)

Procedure

STEP 1: Heat a pan, add milk and cook for 10 minutes on low heat.

STEP 2: In a bowl add a teaspoon of warm milk and add the saffron strands. Leave it aside for a couple of minutes.

STEP 3: Once the milk comes to a boil add the saffron-milk mixture, condensed milk and sugar.

STEP 4: Add the fruits (rinse the canned fruits in water). Cook for 10 more minutes and turn off the heat.

STEP 5: Once the mixture comes to room temperature, refrigerate and serve chilled.

TIP: Garnish with some chopped almonds just before serving.

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Pumpkin Halwa – Parangikai Halwa

 

Prep Time – 5 Mins

Cooking Time – 20 Mins

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Ingredients

Pumpkin – 1 cup (grated)

Sugar – 1/2 cup

Milk – 1/4 cup

Jaggery – 2 inch piece

Almonds – 15

Saffron – Few Strands

Ghee – 6 teaspoons

Cardamom – 1

Salt – 1 pinch

 

Procedure

STEP 1: In a non-stick pan heat 2 teaspoons of ghee and add the grated pumpkin. Cook till the raw smell from the pumpkin goes away, then add the milk and cook for 5 minutes.

STEP 2: To melt the jaggery and prepare syrup take the jaggery in a microwave safe bowl and add 2 – 3 teaspoons of water. Microwave on high for 3 minutes. Stir well until the jaggery piece dissolves completely and filter the jaggery syrup to remove any impurities.

STEP 3: Then add sugar and the jaggery syrup to the cooked pumpkin. Cover and cook on medium heat for 5 minutes.

STEP 4: Add a pinch of salt, saffron strands, chopped almonds and cardamom.

STEP 5: Add 2 more teaspoons of ghee and cook till the halwa stops sticking to the pan. Turn off the heat.

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Pineapple Kesari – Indian Sweet – Fruit flavoured

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Prep Time – 5 Mins

Cooking Time – 20 Mins

Ingredients

Pineapple – 1 cup chopped in cubes

White Rava/Sooji – ½ cup

Sugar – ½ cup

Cashews – 10

Raisins – 10

Saffron – Few Strands

Ghee – 6 teaspoons

Cardamom – 1

Salt – 1 pinch

Procedure

STEP 1: In a non-stick pan heat 2 teaspoons of ghee. Fry the cashews and raisins until golden brown. Remove cashews and raisins from pan and keep aside.

STEP 2: In the same pan add 2 more teaspoons of ghee and add the rava. Fry till the rava turns slightly brown.

STEP 3: Take the chopped pineapple pieces in a microwave safe bowl and add half a cup of water. Microwave on high for 6 – 8 minutes. Puree the microwaved pineapple using a blender.

STEP 4: Then add sugar and the pineapple puree to the roasted rava . Cover and cook on medium heat for 5 minutes. Now open the lid and keep stirring till the kesari stops sticking to the pan (if required add 2 more teaspoons of ghee to avoid sticking). Add a pinch of salt in this stage.

STEP 5: Add the roasted nuts, cardamom and the saffron to the kesari.

STEP 6: Turn off the heat and add finely chopped pineapple to the kesari. Mix well and serve.

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Tip: Adjust the quantity of sugar according to the sweetness of the fruit.

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