It’s been a year since I had my first mulled wine in Europe and I so miss not spending Christmas there. We travelled through Paris and parts of Germany and I must say it was the best holiday I’ve ever had. Nostalgia pushed me into the kitchen and there i was looking up recipes to create a mulled wine that would go well with the Potato Salad, Bratwurst and Sauerkraut I had decided to make for dinner.
All this week I have been pulling out trays after trays of gorgeous rich cookies that have been distributed all over town. Sadly apart from tasting them, my husband hasn’t really had his share of the goodies. Ours is an insulin-dependent household and this cookie recipe has been created specially for him.
When I read this recipe thanks to Pinterest, I wasn’t quite sure how it would turn out. It had crackers, caramel, chocolate and almonds! Sounded delicious enough to try out, what i however didn’t expect is the completely blow-your-mind-out crunch, texture, taste and flavour. The salt from the biscuit base enhanced the flavours of the chocolate and the caramel added that perfect crunch! Truly an amazing find. Also make loads of these, they get wiped out faster than it takes to put them together.
I was putting together a Christmas basket for a friend’s dad, when I realised i have nothing chocolaty in it! It had your Gingerbread Men, Rocky Roads, Beer Flavoured Caremalised Onion Jam, Sweet Bacon Bites and a bottle of Fresh Herb Mix for the roasted chicken, but nothing with my favourite ingredient.
The last time I made these crunchy chocolate biscuits, I bought ready-made biscuits, but this time I had a ready stock of my star shaped short crust cookies.
As a child I would make sure I was taken to all the places that would host gingerbread houses. I was in awe of the magnificent structures, some made with sugar, some from candies and still others from cookies. It was a human marvel. And then came Santa, the big man with a red clothes, a flowy white beard with a bagful of lovely gifts. He charmed me off my two little pink boots. I hated growing up and losing Santa to reality. But the love for the gingerbread man only grew with time. And then I learnt to bake these wholesome warm and crisp cookies on my own. The best day of my life!
This time the first batch of cookies was baked for a niece and nephew’s Christmas party. It was a Saturday afternoon in the first week of December, when the aromas of ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves emerged from the oven as the cookies started to crisp up. And then came the pleasure of icing the gingerbread men and giving them some colour and style to meet the kiddies pleasure.
No sooner does the month of December roll in, than the mood starts to get all festive. The clothes gets warmer and brighter, the kitchen has a brand new aroma wafting through it, rolls of cinnamon and orange peel take up kitchen space, the consumption of butter goes higher and the waistline forgets the 20s….The greens, reds, silvers and whites adorn the dining table and the cookie boxes never look dull, boring or healthy 🙂 My life revolves around my love for cooking. And as I love to bake and grill, there’s no better time than Christmas to pop the best bakes out of my oven.
I could have thought of a brilliant name but i didn’t want to lose out on any of the ingredients. I mean what’s the use of fancy names if you don’t know what’s in it. Right? Anyway so this dessert was born only because I messed up on what I was actually trying to make. 🙂 The ingredients are all the same, it’s just the assembly that went for a toss. I tried to make chocolate bowls on balloons, not realising that the temperature in my kitchen was not conducive to that kind of assembly.
If you’re throwing a party and are stuck for ideas or not quite deft in the kitchen, make something quick and relatively easy that can charm your guests! This stuffed bread is often a charmer. I uses a hard bread, which is commonly known as Brun in India. And dipped into the various sauce bottles that are always lined up in my kitchen. All it needs us some cheeses, and fresh herbs and of course an oven.
It’s been a while since I last posted…blame it on the festive season and the need and demand to eat fried unhealthy stuff! Though I did do my bit to promote diabetic friendly wholesome meals and flavours, in the fight of traditional vs modern, traditional took the cake!
Till I got back to my kitchen and made this glorious moist sticky prune cake.
This is a breakfast dish you will find in every Gujarati home. It’s simple, easy to make, can be churned out in 30 minutes and what’s more can be created out of as many different kinds of veggies as you wish. What’s more since it is traditionally steamed before it is sautéed, it can be made in advance and sautéed just before you are ready to serve it with a dollop of green chutney.