Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins

It may not feel like fall yet but summer is definitely over. College starts tomorrow and I am, needless to say, already heading towards depression.

Last year of college! Can you blame me?

Oh the jitters. Which would justify why I’ve been hankering down in the kitchen everyday all day long. Nothing like some good fall baking to make everything better.

These pumpkin Nutella swirl muffins are the BOMB. They’re soft, tender, and extremely moist. You won’t be able to stop at one!

 

These pumpkin Nutella swirl muffins are the BOMB. Bursting with fall flavors, these muffins will make your house smell like the most glorious bakery in Italy.

 

Pumpkin and Chocolate were meant to be together and when that chocolate is in the form of luscious Nutella, you know the muffins are bound to be out-of-this-world good.

They’re soft, tender, and extremely moist.

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You won’t be able to stop at one!

These pumpkin Nutella swirl muffins are the BOMB. They’re soft, tender, and extremely moist. You won’t be able to stop at one!

For my fellow Pakistani peeps who aren’t accustomed to the pumpkin ecstasy, let me tell you that it is d.e.l.i.c.i.o.u.s!

Pumpkin puree makes everything silky, soft and extremely moist. It doesn’t have a very distinct flavor which is why you add spices like cinnamon and nutmeg to amplify it.

I have yet to see pumpkin puree being sold here in the supermarkets of Islamabad, which is why I made my own pumpkin puree from scratch. I’ll do a step by step post on it if you like. It’s very simple, just slice a pumpkin up, de-seed it, and roast in the oven till fork-tender. Cool and then scoop out all the soft bits. Chopperize or blend till smooth. Fill up disposable Ziploc bags with it and freeze. It lasts for up to a year.

Be it the classic Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread or Pumpkin Fettuccine, homemade pumpkin puree can be used for all sorts of things; both sweet and savory.

These pumpkin Nutella swirl muffins are the BOMB. They’re soft, tender, and extremely moist. You won’t be able to stop at one!

These pumpkin Nutella swirl muffins are the BOMB. They’re soft, tender, and extremely moist. You won’t be able to stop at one!

Give pumpkin a try. You won’t regret it.🙂

Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins

Prep Time: 15 minutes                                                                        Yields: 18 muffins
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Ingredients:
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (read description above)
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup Nutella spread
Directions:
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Line a muffin pan with paper liners or grease the tray well with cooking oil.
In a mixing bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, sugar, eggs, and oil until well-combined. In another bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon powder, and nutmeg. Add the flour mixture and milk to the pumpkin mixture alternatively, starting and ending with the flour, until everything is just combined. DO NOT OVERMIX.
Spoon batter into the muffin tray cavities, filling about 3/4 of the way full.
Place the Nutella into a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 20-30 seconds or until it thins out. Using a teaspoon, drop a spoonful or two of Nutella onto the top of each muffin and swirl with a knife.
Bake for 25-30 minutes or until set and golden brown. Best served warm!
*Store leftovers in an airtight container. Warm in microwave before serving.
Recipe source: Inside BruCrew Life

These pumpkin Nutella swirl muffins are the BOMB. They’re soft, tender, and extremely moist. You won’t be able to stop at one!

The Fluffiest Pancakes You Will Ever Eat

Thick, fluffy, downright delicious. This is the only pancake recipe you need!

The Fluffiest Pancakes You Will Ever Eat

What’s better on a weekend than to sit home in your pajamas and eat a stack of fluffy pancakes doused in chocolate syrup?

 

The Fluffiest Pancakes You Will Ever Eat

And could there be anything better than pancakes to start your Eid holidays with?

Not really.

 

The Fluffiest Pancakes You Will Ever Eat

These pancakes are so light, so fluffy I could die!

A whole batch takes just minutes to whip up. Serve them smothered in Nutella, maple syrup, or jam; they’re awesome either way. Make these today, tomorrow, every day!

xoxo, Noor

Fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes

Yields: 13-15 pancakes
Ingredients:
1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk1
1 egg
1 Tablespoon melted & cooled butter or vegetable oil
Directions:
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Whisk in the buttermilk, egg and melted butter, just until all mixed together (small lumps are fine, DON’T OVERMIX).
Heat a large, nonstick pan over medium-heat and lightly brush with oil or butter. Using an ice cream scoop (or any large spoon) add the batter to the pan. Cook the pancake for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the bubbles begin popping on top of the pancake and it’s golden brown on the bottom. Slide a thin, wide metal spatula underneath the pancake and gently but quickly flip it over. Cook an additional 1 to 2 minutes, until the other side is golden as well. Repeat with the remaining pancake batter.
Serve pancakes immediately topped with a drizzle of maple or chocolate syrup. Enjoy
Notes:
1.        DIY Buttermilk: 1 cup milk + 1 Tbsp vinegar. Mix and let it sit for 10 minutes. Mix well and use.
*To achieve smooth brown pancakes, don’t grease the pan after every single pancake. Grease it after every third pancake. Hope that makes sense.

 

nnnn

Peach Crumble Pie

Pie makes everything better.

That’s what I snapped last week when I was baking this peach pie. The therapeutic value of making a pie really is just bazoom!

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

Last week wasn’t a particularly good week (refer to last post).

What kept me from going over the edge was baking. And cooking. All day long. I would start my day with pancakes, moving onto pasta, naans, pizza, and ending with iced tea.

But nothing could beat the making of this pie. It was so SO relaxing and stress relieving.  Even if it was just for a few minutes, I stopped worrying about everything else and just enjoyed the feel of the cold butter in my hands, and the wonderful aroma of the juicy peaches and the cinnamon.

Thank you Sally for this wonderful recipe!

I can’t believe I’ve gone this long without making an actual pie (these tiny things don’t count).

 

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

 

This pie involves a flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble.

It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

If that doesn’t scream summer to you, I don’t know what will.

 

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

I’ve used the same pie crust I used for the Apple Hand Pies. It’s buttery, flaky, and everything a good crust should be.

*As mentioned, the vegetable shortening in the recipe is Crisco and it’s easily available in every big supermarket.

 

A few pointers before we head straight to the recipe:

  • Use very very cold butter and shortening. Cold fat when melts in the oven causes the pastry to puff up creating little air pockets which makes the end result so tender and flaky.

  • Be gentle with the pie crust. Unlike pizza dough, it doesn’t require kneading. Just mix till it comes together.

  • Use fresh peaches that aren’t too ripe nor too hard.

  • Walnuts are optional in the crumble but highly recommended.

  • Ice cream is NOT optional >> You must serve this pie with vanilla ice cream.

A slice of fresh homemade peach pie and a nice big scoop of vanilla ice cream, it might just be a slice of heaven!

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

And there you go. Peach Crumble Pie.

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

I did it. I made a pie from scratch!

Peach Crumble Pie

Yields: 1 pie
Ingredients:
FOR THE PIE CRUST
1 and ¼ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
3 Tablespoon (45g) unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
¼ cup + 2 Tablespoon vegetable shortening, chilled
¼ cup ice water
FOR THE FILLING
6-8 medium sized peaches, cut into chunks
½ cup packed brown sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoon lemon juice
¼ teaspoon cinnamon powder
FOR THE CRUMBLE:
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 (75g) cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, lightly roasted *optional
Directions:
For the Pie Crust
In a large bowl, mix together the flour and salt. Add the butter and shortening. Using two forks, or with the help of your fingertips, cut the butter and shortening into the flour until it resembles bread crumbs, some bigger bits of butter are perfectly fine.
Drizzle in the icy cold water little by little, stirring with a wooden spoon. When the dough begins to form large clumps, do not add more water.
Flour a work surface and transfer dough on it. Using floured hands, fold dough into itself till it comes together, and the flour is fully incorporated into the fats. Form a ball. Flatten it and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 to 3 hours
For the Filling
Peel the peaches and chop them into 2 inch chunks.
In a large bowl, combine together the peach chunks, brown sugar, flour, lemon juice, and cinnamon until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 200 degrees C.
For the Crumble
In a bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and flour. Stir in the butter and chopped walnuts. Mixture will be thick. Set aside.
Assembling
On a floured work surface, roll out one of the chilled dough until you have a circle 12 inches in diameter. Carefully place the dough onto a greased 9×2 inch pie dish. Tuck it in with your fingers, making sure it is smooth. Cut off any excess dough from the edges. Prick the base using a fork.
Spoon the peach filling onto the crust, leaving any liquid behind in the bowl.  Sprinkle over the peaches the prepared crumble topping.
Bake for 40-60 minutes, depending on your oven, till golden brown and bubbly.
Allow the pie to cool for 3 full hours at room temperature before serving. This time allows the filling to thicken up and the sugars and juices to settle.
Serve with vanilla ice cream. Cover pie leftovers tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Notes:
I use and recommend Crisco as the vegetable shortening. It is easily available in all large superstores.
Cover pie leftovers tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Baked pie can be frozen for upto 3 months.
Recipe source: Sally’s baking addiction

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

Creamiest Chocolate Pudding

“Others have seen what is and asked why. I have seen what could be and asked why not.”

–Pablo Picasso

Have you ever wanted something so bad you think you’d die if you don’t have it? And when you think you’ve finally gotten it, its snatched away from you?

If yes, then this chocolate pudding is especially for you.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; it provides comfort like no other.

 

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Chocolate pudding is just one of those things that never fails to bring a smile on your face or warmth to your toes.

Its rich, its creamy, and it is so so SO easy to make even my fogged up brain can whip it up. Just needs a little bit of patience and whole lot of whisking!

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

To start, combine sugar, cocoa, salt and cornflour.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Whisk in 2/3 cup milk and an egg.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Heat the rest of the milk to a scalding temperature.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Then whisk in the egg cocoa mixture and cook over high heat until the pudding thickens into a luscious, silky consistency.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Then remove the pudding from the heat and stir in vanilla extract.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Pour the chocolate pudding into a big bowl to chill. Press plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pudding, so a skin doesn’t form.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Then, chill the pudding for an hour or two in the refrigerator or eat it warm. Enjoy!

Chocolate Pudding

Prep Time: 15 minutes                                                                        Yields: 4 servings
Cook Time: 12 to 15 minutes
Ingredients:
·         1/2 cup sugar
·         1/3 cup cocoa powder
·         1/4 cup cornflour (cornstartch)
·         1/4 tsp salt
·         2 2/3 cups  milk
·         1 large egg
·         1 tsp vanilla extract
Directions:
In a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar, cocoa, cornflour, and salt. In another bowl, mix together the egg and 2/3 cup of milk. Gradually add milk mixture over the cocoa mixture and whisk to dissolve well. Set aside.
In a sauce pan bring the rest of the milk (2 cups) to a boil.
Remove from heat and gradually add the egg mixture over the hot milk whisking the whole time. Place it back over the heat and cook whisking constantly until the mixture thickens, about 3 minutes on medium heat.
Remove the pudding from the heat and stir in vanilla extract.
Pour the pudding into 4 individual or one big bowl and press plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding so a skin doesn’t form. Refrigerate for an hour or two until chilled or serve warm drizzled with chocolate syrup.
Notes:
Good quality cocoa powder is paramount to this recipe otherwise you’ll end with a Milo like tasting bland pudding. For intense chocolate flavor, add in a couple tablespoons of melted dark chocolate.
Recipe source: Home Cooking Adventure

Eat it warm, eat it cold; this Chocolate Pudding provides comfort like no other.

Garlic Naan

What do you do when you find your favorite naan shop closed on a Sunday morning?

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You make your own naans!

Buttery and garlicky, these naan are incredibly soft with all those giant air pockets.

The idea may seem daunting at first but I hope by now I’ve got you well acquainted with handling all sorts of dough. Be it: my foolproof recipe for pizza dough used to make not just this beautiful braided chicken bread but also these cute little mini pizza pies. Or this super easy and frugal recipe for flour tortillas which makes these BBQ taquitos all the more delicious. And how can we forget, my all-time favorite, the soft puffy puri…O’so good!

Homemade garlic naans are much easier than you think and irresistibly delicious! It’s the same foolproof pizza dough with certain key changes that makes it all the more yummy and garlicky.

Buttery and garlicky, these naan are incredibly soft with all those giant air pockets.

The dough is incredibly forgiving. If it’s too dry, add more milk. If it’s too wet, add more flour. A soft dough is what you want in the end.

Softer the dough; softer and pillowy the naans are.

 

Buttery and garlicky, these naan are incredibly soft with all those giant air pockets.

I cooked half of the naans on a grill pan, and the other half on a plain non-stick pan. It doesn’t matter whether or not you own a grill pan. Both result in gorgeous looking naans, and they taste just the same!

Buttery and garlicky, these naan are incredibly soft with all those giant air pockets.

Cook for a minute or until you see bubbles starting to form. Flip and cook for 1-2 minutes on the other side until large toasted spots appear on the underside. Brush with butter mixed with chopped coriander.

Place the naan in a kitchen towel and repeat with the rest of the naans.

Then serve warm, sprinkled with some fresh coriander or sesame seeds.

And get ready, because these garlic naans will blow your mind! Buttery and garlicky, these naan are incredibly soft with all those giant air pockets. 

You may never go back to buying store-bought naan again.😉

Buttery and garlicky, these naan are incredibly soft with all those giant air pockets.

Some of my favorite ways to enjoy these naans? Soaking up the masala from this Chicken Karhai or with this sumptuous kebab masala.

Garlic Naan

Serves: 8
Ingredients:
1 cup warm milk
2 tsp sugar
1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
4 cups all-purpose flour
3 Tbsp. plain yogurt
1 teaspoons salt
3 Tbsp. melted butter or oil
5-6 cloves garlic, minced
Additional 2 Tbsp. melted butter mixed with 2 Tbsp. fresh coriander leaves, chopped
(optional topping: sesame seed)
Directions:
  1. In a large bowl, stir together, by hand or with a stand mixer, all the ingredients except the milk. Add in the milk gradually, and mix till a ball of dough starts forming. If kneading by hand then take out the dough from the bowl and start kneading it on a floured counter-top till it becomes smooth but still slightly sticky.
  2. Grease the mixing bowl with oil, then place the dough ball back in the bowl and cover it with a damp towel.  Place in a warm location (I place mine in the microwave) and let it rise for 1-2 hours or until the dough has nearly doubled in size.
  3. Once doubled in size, punch it down and add in the minced garlic. Knead for a few more minute and then transfer it to a floured work surface.  Cut the dough into 8 large or 16 small separate pieces. Roll each into a ball with your hands, then place on the floured surface and use a rolling pin to roll out the dough into a large circle) until the dough is a little less than 1/4-inch thick.
  4. Heat a large non-stick pan or grill pan over medium-high heat. Drizzle a bit of butter or oil.  Add a piece of the rolled-out dough to the pan and cook for 1 minute, or until the dough begins to bubble and the bottom turns lightly golden.  Flip the naan and cook on the second side for 1-2 minutes, or until the bottom is golden. Brush naan lightly with the coriander-infused butter on both sides. Then transfer it to a separate plate, and cover with a towel.  Repeat with remaining dough until all of the naan pieces are cooked.
  5. Keep the naan covered with the towel until ready to serve, so that it doesn’t dry out.  Serve sprinkled with sesame seeds, if desired.

 

 

Buttery and garlicky, these naan are incredibly soft with all those giant air pockets.

 

ST. JOHN BAKERY DOUGHNUTS

For the global food fanatics, St. John Bakery won’t be a new name. Like the Magnolia Bakery of New York, it is a household name for baked goods enthusiasts (like me!) For those who don’t know the sheer awesomeness that is St. John, please check it out and prepare to swoon.

I definitely swooned the first time I saw these gorgeous donuts. I decided there and then; I WANT THEM IN MY LIFE. Alas London is a bit too far for me to travel at the moment. So I could either content myself with sighing over delicious pictures or bring some St. John magic to my own kitchen.

Guess which I chose?

St. John Doughnuts. Not too big, not too greasy; with a soft, airy inside and filled with the most delicious vanilla custard cream.

No brownie for you because duhhh. Here I am sharing my experience making these little pieces of pastry heaven. Be bold and bake, my lovelies!

(disclaimer: there is no baking involved in this recipe. I just really liked the alliteration 😋)

St. John Doughnuts. Not too big, not too greasy; with a soft, airy inside and filled with the most delicious vanilla custard cream.

The original recipe can be found here, and if you go through it you can see that the making of the dough requires a stand mixer. All the recipes for St John doughnuts that I have found in my research impress upon the need of a stand mixer in order for the dough to be light and fluffy. But since I am a humble beginner deprived of the joys of a stand mixer (this was a hint for my parents, in case they are reading this), I was willing to take the risk and knead it by hand. I may not have tasted the original donuts but I can say with surety, mine were pretty darn good.

St. John Doughnuts. Not too big, not too greasy; with a soft, airy inside and filled with the most delicious vanilla custard cream.

Making this dough by hand will require some serious elbow grease and patience. I admit there was a time while I was working the dough, that I thought it’s all going wrong! It’s not working, the dough is lumpy and not coming together and I’ve just wasted a lot of ingredients, I am a failure! (over dramatic? My middle name) But gradually and slowly with more kneading and kneading, it came together beautifully. The dough had a lovely stretch to it, just like shown here in this video. And after proofing? My God. The way it rose. I could just tell that it would yield some beautiful doughnuts.

St. John Doughnuts. Not too big, not too greasy; with a soft, airy inside and filled with the most delicious vanilla custard cream.

So if you like me don’t have a stand mixer (yet), worry not, for I’ve explained the recipe step by step as to how to make the dough by hand. Understanding them will take time and concentration. But they are well worth it! My only advice to you is to have patience.

  • While kneading the dough

  • The overnight wait for it to proof and rest

  • The second proof after shaping the doughnuts

  • Allowing them to cool before filling them with the delicious creamy custard

And then… YOU CAN EAT AS MANY DOUGHNUTS AS YOU WANT BECAUSE YOU ARE AWESOME.

I ended up eating five. Don’t judge. THEY’RE THAT GOOD. Not too big, not too greasy; with a soft, airy inside and filled with the most delicious vanilla custard cream.

St. John Doughnuts. Not too big, not too greasy; with a soft, airy inside and filled with the most delicious vanilla custard cream.

They turned out exactly as I had hoped and what I believe St. Johns are like – a thin, crisp exterior that gives way to an airy and fluffy center filled with a smooth pastry cream. The doughnuts are rolled in a coating of granulated sugar and cinnamon powder while they’re still warm, which causes it to just sort of melt onto the outside of the doughnut. Sugary perfection.

Nothing compares to biting into a homemade doughnut and seeing that delicious cream ooze out. It has to be one of the most satisfying experiences.

St. John Doughnuts. Not too big, not too greasy; with a soft, airy inside and filled with the most delicious vanilla custard cream.

One last thing. I would recommend making and frying all the doughnuts once. Do not store the dough for later use. The texture just isn’t same if made out of a day old dough. The doughnuts are best the day they are made, fresh and crisp!

St John Bakery Doughnuts

 Yields: 20 doughnuts
Ingredients:
For the Doughnuts:
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 4 eggs
  • zest from 1 lemon
  • 3/4 cup lukewarm water
  • 115g or 1 stick butter, soft
  • Oil, for frying
  • Cinnamon sugar, for tossing the doughnuts
For the Pastry Cream:
  • 1½ cups whole milk
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup cream, cold
Directions:
For the Doughnuts:
(If you have a stand mixer then, follow all steps using that, if not then knead by hand *read description above)
Place all the dough ingredients, except from the butter, into a large bowl, and mix with the help of a wooden spoon till the dough starts coming away from the sides and forms a ball. Then slowly start adding the butter to the dough, 1 tablespoon at a time, and mix with your hands in circular motion. Dough will be very sticky. Keep on mixing well after each addition until butter is fully incorporated and dough is soft, smooth, and elastic, a total of 5 to 6 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl and place it in a well-floured bowl. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours or, preferably, overnight.
The next day, take the dough out of the fridge and gently press it into a large rectangle about 1-inch thick. Cut the dough into 2 – 3 -inch squares.
Roll the squares into smooth tight buns and place them on a floured baking tray, leaving plenty of room in between. Cover lightly with a kitchen towel and leave for about 1-2 hours, or until about doubled in size.
Fill a large pot with 2-3 inches of oil.  When the oil is hot, carefully place a few doughnuts in the oil.
Fry about 2 minutes per side, until deep golden brown.
Remove the warm doughnuts to a bowl with sugar and cinnamon powder and shake until covered.
Repeat until all the doughnuts have been fried.
For the Pastry Cream:
In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks until well combined, about 30 seconds. Slowly whisk in the flour mixture until thick and pasty. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, warm the milk until bubbles just start to form around the edges. Do NOT boil.
Pour the just boiling milk over the yolk mixture, continuously whisking to prevent curdling, then return the mixture to the saucepan.
Then cook over a medium heat, whisking constantly for about 5 minutes, until very thick and glossy.
Remove from heat and whisk in the vanilla. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic wrap against the surface of the pastry cream to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate until chilled.
Whip the cream until thick and fold into the chilled custard.
Transfer the cream to a piping bag fitting with a small round decorating tip. Poke a hole in the side of each doughnut and fill with pastry cream. The doughnuts should be served as soon as they are filled.
Recipe courtesy: Not without salt, Brown eyed baker

 

PS. My bunnies, Sam and Pippin, couldn’t resist oohing and aahing over the doughnuts either. :p

St. John Doughnuts. Not too big, not too greasy; with a soft, airy inside and filled with the most delicious vanilla custard cream.

St. John Doughnuts. Not too big, not too greasy; with a soft, airy inside and filled with the most delicious vanilla custard cream.

Kebab Masala with Homemade Puri

I’ve been meaning to make kebab masala for so long. I’d always liked the sound of it…soft, succulent kebabs smothered in a rich spicy tomato gravy.

Easy, comforting, and packed with flavor!

Made using fresh herbs, garam masala, fenugreek leaves; this is a true South Eastern feast. And what’s better than to enjoy it with some good ole puris.

Soft, succulent kebabs smothered in a rich spicy tomato gravy.

What I love most about this kebab masala is how quick it is to put together.

It has two steps to it;

  1. The kebabs

  2. The masala

Soft, succulent kebabs smothered in a rich spicy tomato gravy.

You start off by making the kebab mix, shaping it, and then shallow frying till golden brown. Set aside.

Next you make the masala; everything cooked together till onions and tomatoes mush up. I did end up grinding the whole mixture just because I don’t like bits of onion in my gravy. It’s up to you though. You can leave it as it is or grind it till smooth like I did.

Lastly, add the fried kebabs to the masala and let it simmer on low heat till kebabs are cooked all the way through. Garnish with fresh coriander and serve with puris, and voila, you’ve got a sumptuous dinner ready in no time!

Soft, succulent kebabs smothered in a rich spicy tomato gravy.

And now the Puris.

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.

Would you believe me if I told you that these puris too take NO time at all to make and devour?

I got the idea of making them halfway through while I was frying the kebabs. I just mixed together all the dough ingredients, kneaded it for a few minutes and let the dough rest for round 20 minutes. Then made balls and rolled them till very thin, fried in very very hot oil.

A few tips to keep in mind while making puris:

  • The dough must be kneaded to a hard consistency. Don’t be tempted to add in more water

  • Yogurt helps in making soft puris, so don’t skip it

  • Oil for frying must be Hot. Very very hot

And that’s it! Soft, flaky homemade puris ready in no time at all.

Soft, succulent kebabs smothered in a rich spicy tomato gravy.

This will make for a perfect Sunday brunch meal. Make this for your family tomorrow and remember me in your prayers.🙂

Gola Kebab Masala with Homemade Puri

Serves: 6-8
Ingredients:
For Kebabs:
  • 500g lean beef mince
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 small bunch coriander leaves, chopped
  • 3 green chillies, chopped
  • 1 slice white bread soaked in milk
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 2 Tbsp. gram flour/ chickpea flour, roasted lightly
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp. ginger paste
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin powder
  • ½ tsp. Shan Karhai Masala, optional
  • ½ tsp. red chilli powder
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
For Masala/Gravy:

 

  • 3 medium onions, chopped finely
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 5 small fresh tomatoes, sliced
  • 1/4 cup yoghurt
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp. ginger paste
  • 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. red chilli powder
  • 1 green chilli
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 cardamom pod
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. garam masala
  • 1 tsp. dried fenugreek leaves
  • 1 tsp. salt, or to taste
  • Fresh coriander for garnishing
For Puris:
  • 2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 Tbsp. yoghurt
  • 3 Tbsp. oil
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • pinch of baking powder
  • a little bit of warm milk and water for kneading
  • oil for deep frying
Directions:
For the Kebabs
Place the onion, coriander, ginger, garlic and chillies in a grinder and grind until smooth.  Add this to the minced meat in a large bowl along with all the rest of the ingredients.
Mix well with your hands for about 3-5 minutes until everything is very well combined. Cover the bowl with cling film and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
Shape the kebabs like small balls, make sure they are very smooth, and then lightly shallow fry, just for a couple of minutes on each side till golden brown. Drain and set aside.
For the Masala/Gravy
Heat oil in a pan. Fry the onions till golden brown, then add the cumin seeds, cinnamon and cardamom. Fry. Then add the tomatoes and the ginger garlic paste. Mix well. Add in the tomato paste, a little bit of water, and the sugar, salt, cumin, chilli, turmeric and coriander powders Cook together until the oil is released from the sides. Then add the yogurt and the green chilli. Mix and let it cook on low heat until the gravy is thick.
Next, add ½ cup water and allow to simmer. Gently add in the kebabs and cook on low heat for 10 minutes. Every once in a while, open the lid and gently swirl everything together so that the gravy coats the kebabs and they get turned over so that they may cook evenly on all sides.
Once the kebabs are fully cooked, add the garam masala and the dried fenugreek, garnish with coriander and serve hot puris!
For the puris
In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, yogurt and oil. Gradually add in the warm water/milk mix and knead till a hard ball comes to form. Let it sit, covered with a kitchen towel, for about 20 minutes, and then divide the dough into 10-12 pieces. Roll each one out till thin.
Heat your oil, make sure it’s quite hot. Put in a puri in the hot oil and immediately start splashing hot oil over the top of it with a spoon.
Gently press down on the puri with the back of a wooden spoon or spatula, and you will see it start to puff up. Flip the puri over and cook the other side until golden brown.

 

Notes:
For a smoother gravy, blend it before adding the water and kebabs. Make sure the masala is cool before you blend it.

 

Soft, succulent kebabs smothered in a rich spicy tomato gravy.

1st Blogiversary + CHOCOLATE CAKE

Classic Chocolate Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream on Spatula in My Pocket's 1st Blogiversary

This time last year, I sat with my laptop; editing, tweaking, hesitating and finally hitting ‘publish’on the first post on spatulainmypocket.com. *dundundun*

With that one click, I gave permission to everyone in the world to read what I had written and see what I had made. That’s the day Spatula in My Pocket was truly born. It started as a hobby and in the space of an year, has become a part of my identity. A part that I am immensely proud of. So, in this post I am going to indulge myself and talk about my magnificent journey so far (lots more to come, InshaaAllah!)

There is special surprise at the end for you, so start scrolling!

Classic Chocolate Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream on Spatula in My Pocket's 1st Blogiversary

Spatula in My Pocket has opened new worlds to me, found me new friends, a sense of purpose, and above all, it has given me confidence to overcome the crushing fear of failure and TO TRY.

The year has passed by so quickly.

From interviews, shoutouts, being mentioned in Buzzfeed, Parade Magazine, winning the Foona best blogger competition and baking bazillion cakes. This year has been a roll coaster ride.

Classic Chocolate Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream on Spatula in My Pocket's 1st Blogiversary

Some of my favorite posts from this year have been:

This decadent red velvet cake with whipped cream cheese frosting + its Halloween rendition

An all-time family favorite, Chicken Karhai

S’mores. Brownies. PIE. >>> S’mores Brownie Pie

First post, the rich gooey molten lava cake

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread, also involving a mention of my first ever attempt at a Wedding Cake

First Bake Stall!! Sigh. Memories.

This to.die.for Salted Caramel Chocolate Tart

The ultimate comfort food…Fettuccine Carbonara

My brother’s birthday cake: strawberries and cream cake

Classic Chocolate Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream on Spatula in My Pocket's 1st Blogiversary

Also can we just admire these pictures?

I threw myself a little blogiversary party.

Nothing much.

Just some mini cupcakes, normal cupcakes, donuts, and a giant pink ombre cake topped with MORE DONUTS. ^.^

Classic Chocolate Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream on Spatula in My Pocket's 1st BlogiversaryClassic Chocolate Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream on Spatula in My Pocket's 1st Blogiversary

Lastly, thank you all so much for your continued support and love!

I appreciate everyone who visits this humble website even when weeks go by without any new posts (guilty as charged).

Spatula in My Pocket is for you guys.

Classic Chocolate Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream on Spatula in My Pocket's 1st Blogiversary

I hope and pray with all my brownie-loving heart that the next year and the years to come bring endless prosperity and joy and rainbows and sprinkles to the domains of Spatula in My Pocket. I vow to be a better blogress and update more exciting recipes and answer all queries diligently!

Classic Chocolate Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream on Spatula in My Pocket's 1st Blogiversary

And now, without any more sentimental words, here’s the recipe for THE CHOCOLATE CAKE my inbox gets flooded with requests for. MUCH LOVE!

Classic Chocolate Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Serves 12
Ingredients:
For the Cake
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup cocoa powder
2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
¾ teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons canola oil
2 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
1 ½ cups whole milk, at room temperature
1 cup hot strong-brewed coffee
For the Swiss Meringue Buttercream
1 cup granulated sugar
4 large egg whites
250g softened unsalted butter
1 tsp vanilla essence
Directions:
Chocolate Cake
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Grease and flour two 8-inch cakes pans and set aside.
  2. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and set aside.
  3. In the bowl using a hand mixer, beat together the oil and sugar on medium speed for 2 minutes. With the mixer on, add the eggs, egg yolks, vanilla, and almond extract. Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl.
  4. Turn the mixer to low and add the flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl. With the mixer on low, stream in the coffee and mix just until combined.
  5. Evenly divide the batter among the prepared pans. Bake for 23 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.
Swiss Meringue Buttercream
  1. Place the egg whites and sugar in an extremely clean heatproof bowl. Place over a pan of simmering (not boiling) water and whisk with a hand whisk until the sugar has dissolved completely and the mixture is warm to the touch, if you rub some of the mixture between your fingers it should be smooth and you shouldn’t be able to feel any graininess, this will take about five minutes.
  2. Remove the bowl from the heat and attach it to your stand mixer with the whisk attachment or use an electric hand whisk, whisk the egg whites until it forms a thick, glossy, bright white meringue and is completely cool, the bottom of the bowl should feel cool to the touch, this will take about 10 minutes.
  3. Once the meringue is cold, switch the mixer to a low speed and begin to add the butter, a tablespoon at a time, make sure that each addition is fully incorporated before adding the next; the meringue will deflate a little and may begin to look curdled. This is normal, just keep adding the butter gradually and whipping away and it will come back together. If, once all the butter has been added, your mixture is runny, the butter may have been too soft or the meringue still warm, just put the bowl in the fridge for 15 minutes or so then carry on whipping.
  4. Once the buttercream is completely smooth and silky and all the butter has been incorporated, whisk in the vanilla extract. Keep cool in the fridge till ready to use
Assembling
  1. Place the bottom layer of cake on a cake plate or serving dish. Spread on about ½ to ¾ cup of the buttercream with an offset spatula. Top with the next layer of cake.
  2. Frost the cake with the remaining buttercream. Refrigerate until set, about 15 to 20 minutes.
*For the ombre effect; divide the buttercream into three bowls. Color to of the bowls with varying shades of pink. Starting from the bottom, spread the darkest color frost. Then spread the lighter pink above it. Cover the top layer with the white frosting. With a cake scraper, smooth the sides.