Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Pomegranate Breakfast Soda

Pomegranate is one of my favorite fruits. When it comes to nutrition content, this fruit is one of the toppers. On most days, my breakfast includes fresh orange juice and I shift to pomegranate when they are in season.

This breakfast soda is great for a sunny morning. The beauty of it lies in its simplicity . This recipe is adapted from Ina Garten.

I made fresh pomegranate juice at home. Care needs to be taken while blending the pomegranate seeds. Just pulse about 5 times to extract the juice. Too much blending will lead to a very grainy discolored juice. Straining the juice works best with a muslin cloth or small-holed mesh strainer.
(Always use gloves when removing pomegranate seeds as it stains fingers.)

  • 100 ml pomegranate juice
  • 100 ml sparkling water ( Soda)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar(optional)

Mix the ingredients together in a pitcher and serve over ice.


Sunday, June 17, 2012

Zebra cake

The Masterchef Australia Season has started all over again and I love, love, love the show. I never miss an episode. Such a pleasure watching people cooking good food and all the more 'beautiful food'. There a so many talented people out there. Good to see wonderfully good food with quality ingredients. Have watched Masterchef USA and India and to be frank, I liked only Australia. The focus is only on food and no cribbing and fussing. I learn so much about food from this show. The judges are fantastic too.
I can just go on and on and on about this but let me just sum it all up with a Big Hurrah! for the Masterchef Australia series.

Now, let me get to my baked goodies. This time round, I want to share the recipe and pics of a  Zebra cake.  I think it looks adorable. I'm impressed with myself. Pat, pat, pat on my back. This cake went straight to a cousin's home. So I could not taste it, but, those who did, said it was fabulous.

What I would do differently next time,
1) make more layers. This time I tried just few.
2) Since I now know how to do it, I would spoon the batter a little neater next time. This time the job was shabby as you can see  :)

The layers were not so clear on the outside . But , when cut, there was this beautiful display of brown and white.The design looked so fashionable.

  • 1 1/2 cupsall purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 medium eggs at room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup warm, whole milk 
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder.  

  • Preheat  oven to 400 degrees F or 205 degrees C . Line an 8-inch cake pan with parchment paper or butter and dust with all-purpose flour. 
  • Sift flour, baking powder, and salt and set aside.
  • In a large mising bowl, beat butter and sugar using an electric mixer set on low speed, until the mixture resembles damp sand (about 3 mins).
  •  Beat in the eggs one at a time on medium-high, until wellblended and  a smooth fluffy consistency is reached. (About 7-8 mins)
  • Add vanilla and mix.
  • Add 1/3 of the sifted flour mixture and milk alternately and mix until you have added it all.
  • Do not overbeat this mixture. Once the flour is incorporated well, stop mixing. 
  • Separate this batter into 2 equal parts. To one part add cocoa powder and mix well.   
Now to create the zebra design.  
For this the batter has to be poured in a particular fashion into the mold.
  • Take a large spoon or ladle and first spoon the vanilla batter right into the center of  the prepared pan. Tap the pan thrice to spread the batter a little.  
  • Next, spoon the chocolate batter right in the middle of the vanilla batter and tap the pan.  
  • Repeat these 2 steps alternately till you have added all the batter. (see pic above)
  • Bake until a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out clean — 25 to 30 minutes. 
  • Cool cake completely on a wire rack.


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