Escape Into The Lush Black Forest (Cake)

Black Forest (5)

Farewell! God knows when we shall meet again.” – William Shakespeare

Ahem! That was a little much. In today’s world of futuristic technology, “Farewells & Goodbyes” are never forever. You pick up your snazzy ol’ phone and call your now “Long Distance” friend to update her on the latest gossip and it’s like she never left!!! Yup it’s that easy! So my good friend from college and colleague of almost eight months bid a teary goodbye to the Team to fulfill her career dream elsewhere. Although, I’m sure she’ll add to the awesomeness of the new company she is to join, I wish her all the good luck and success!

Smi, even though most our plans never really worked out due to the busy schedule, I will surely miss the gossiping and us, forever whingeing about the short breaks at work, crazy shopping and trying to keep under budget, the dinner/lunch outings that drained half our monthly pay and not to forget, the very first splurge on getting our hair straightened together. :P

Like they say “Life is not a destination but a journey.” You make many different friends along the way. Some stay, some don’t and some just fade away. I hope you stay, girl! It was fun knowing you as a colleague too! I hope you find success and some real good friends and that everything works out for you at the new place.

Now how about I stop being mushy and share a recipe? ;) Here’s the Black Forest Cake I whipped up for my work-family and also the one I made for my brother’s friend’s Birthday. Enjoy!

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Chocolate Cake


2 Cups boiling water
1 Cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 3/4 Cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 Cup butter
2 1/4 Cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 180. Whisk water and cocoa together until smooth, then refrigerate until room temperature. Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside. Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then beat in eggs one by one and mix in the vanilla. Add the flour and cocoa mixtures alternately, in fourths. When fully combined, pour the mixture into greased cake pans 3/4 full and bake 30-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in middle. Allow to cool to room temperature.

Vanilla Butter-cream


3 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 to 2 tablespoons whipping cream (or Whip-Cream powder mixed with a little milk)


Mix sugar and butter on low-speed until well blended and then increase speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes.
Add vanilla and cream and continue to beat on medium speed for 1 minute more, adding more cream if needed for spreading consistency.

Assembling the cake

You Need:

1 baked chocolate cake

Vanilla Frosting

Berry crush (as required)


Remove the cake from the pan and slice the cake in half horizontally with a serrated knife. On the bottom half  spread a generous layer of berry crush. Place the top half of the cake back on. Then spread the frosting on the  top gently. Decorate with chocolate shavings etc.


Choco-Caramel Tart/Life’s Simple Pleasures


All our life, we’ve heard things like “Work hard for now. it’s gonna get a whole lot easier after this”, “Just this once… give it your all, you can enjoy later” and so on. Truth is, it never gets easier.

As a matter of fact life gets more demanding every passing day. You need to make choices along the way, which however right they might seem at the moment would make you kick yourself later, Or you would end up happy making them. Either way, Life just keeps you on your toes.

The best answer to life is to do the best you can and hang in there. You rarely get appreciation right away, But it does come to you sooner or later in ways you have never imagined. Just be the best possible version of yourself and take it from there.

I dedicate this post to thank everyone who’s played a part in my life. I wish you all peace and love. :)

This year impress all, at your Christmas table with this divine Chocolate Caramel Tart! Happy Holidays!!! Cheers!!! :)

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*adapted from Martha Stewart’s Chocolate caramel tart with my own adjustments and convenient substitutes.


Chocolate Tart Dough:

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 small egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
1/8 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder

Caramel Filling:

1/4 cup water
1 cups granulated sugar
1/8 cup light corn syrup or pancake syrup
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 cup heavy cream or 1/2 sachet whip cream powder
1 tablespoons creme fraiche (2 tablespoons if using whip cream powder)
a pinch of coarse salt

Chocolate Ganache Glaze:

1/4 cup heavy cream
50 gms extra-bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped



Make the tart dough: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and confectioners’ sugar until combined, about 1 minute. Add egg yolk and vanilla, and beat until smooth. Sift in flour and cocoa powder, and beat on low speed until just combined. Scrape the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap, and form it into a disk; wrap well. Chill until firm, at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.


Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Between two sheets of lightly floured parchment paper, roll the tart dough 3/16 inch thick. Using a floured rolling pin gently roll the dough over a 7 inch tart pan, trimming away any excess dough. Chill the tart shell in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.


Line the tart shell with a piece of parchment paper, and fill with raw rice or dried lentils. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove the parchment paper and its contents, and bake until the pastry looks dry and set, 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool. (The tart shells can be made up to 8 hours ahead.)


Make the filling: Place 1/4 cup water in a large saucepan. Add sugar and corn syrup, and cook mixture over medium-high heat, swirling the pan occasionally, until it becomes a dark-amber caramel, about 10 minutes. Carefully whisk in butter, cream/whip cream powder, creme fraiche, and a pinch of salt (the mixture will bubble up), whisking until smooth. (The caramel can be made up to 5 days ahead and refrigerated in a covered container.) Carefully transfer caramel to a glass measuring cup. Pour caramel in the tart shell while still warm (or reheat caramel over low heat until it is pourable), and let stand until the caramel is set, at least 45 minutes.


Make the ganache glaze: Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl. In a small saucepan, bring cream to a boil. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate, and let stand for 2 minutes, then stir with a rubber spatula until smooth. Pour the glaze over the tarts while still warm. Let the glaze set at room temperature for at least 2 hours before serving.

A Bitter-Sweet End of an Era/Nutella Cloud Frosting.

     1 (19)

    Hey there everyone! Sorry, I’ve been MIA for quite some time now. I was busy dealing with College coming to an end. It’s funny how in such a short period of time you make friends and memories that may stay with you for the rest of your life. You learn so much in these few years; Trying to fit in, in the first few; Trying to keep up with the assignment deadlines in the next. The petty tiffs, the making up.The group studies that has hardly anything to do with studies. ;) Then trying your best to scrape through the tests. :P In short, College life is like a whole life time in itself. And I’m gonna miss it all. I want to share something with you that made a lot of sense to me; When you land up in a job, the salary is not the only thing that will make you happy. Sure, It’s important to pay your bills. But someone who is paid more doesn’t necessarily have more fun or friends. It’s what you do with what you have. It’s all about the journey, how meaningful you make it for yourself and the people around you.

    Ah well, to end on a sweet note, here’s a recipe for a yummy Nutella cloud frosting I came across over the internet on Sweetapolita. I’ve already shared the recipe for Chocolate cupcakes before. To revisit them click here. Enjoy! :)

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1 cup/227 g unsalted butter, softened but cool
1 1/2 cups (190 g) icing sugar, sifted
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup (125 g) premium bittersweet chocolate, chopped, melted and slightly cooled
1/3 cup (100 g) Nutella
1 tbsp milk
pinch of salt



  1. In a bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, combine the icing sugar and butter and beat on low speed for about 1 minute.
  2. Add vanilla, and beat on low speed until well combined.
  3. Add the melted and slightly cooled chocolate and beat on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add the Nutella, milk and pinch of salt, and beat on med-high speed for another minute. If too thick add small increments of more milk and blend until smooth.

Pipe the frosting on the cupcakes or simply smear it on and decorate with some sprinkles and enjoy :D

Chocolate Brownies with Chocolate Fudge Sauce

There are days when you just wanna sit in the confines of your room in solitude and sulk… Such days creep up on me when I least expect them to. And my lovely mum knows how to snap me right out of it! By making something sweet for me! :D

Chocolate Brownies with Chocolate Fudge Sauce

These pictures right here show you just how much my mum knows me! Love you, Mummy!!! <3 :D
These melt-in-the-mouth chocolate brownies can put a smile on any grumpy face! Don’t you agree??? :D
Whip these up for your loved ones and cheer them up today!!! :D

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Chocolate Brownies


180g Unsalted Butter
1/2 cup Cocoa powder
3/4 cup All-purpose flour
1/2 tsp Baking powder
3 Eggs
1 cup Sugar (ground)
1 tsp Vanilla essence
A handful of Walnuts dusted in flour


Preheat the oven to 180 deg.
Melt the butter and mix the cocoa powder in it and set aside to cool.
Sieve the flour and baking powder in a large bowl and set aside.
In a separate bowl beat the eggs till fluffy and mix in the ground sugar and vanilla gently.
Mix the butter-cocoa mixture with the eggs gently.
Fold in the flour little by little to get a thick batter. Then fold in the walnuts(Mum didn’t use the walnuts ‘coz I don’t like em).
Grease your baking tin with butter and sprinkle some flour so your brownies dont stick to the tin and are easy to unmould when baked Or just line your tin with parchment paper.
Pour the batter in the tin. Tap the tin to level the batter. Bake for 30 min at 180 deg.
Let cool completely in the tin, Unmould, cut into squares and garnish with Chocolate Fudge Sauce (recipe below).

*Loved these brownies even more when they were a day old. Store them in an airtight container in the fridge. :)

Chocolate Fudge Sauce


1/2 cup Water
2 tbsp Sugar
4 tsp Cocoa powder
2 tsp Corn flour
1-2 tbsp Water
1 cup Chocolate chips
1 tbsp Unsalted Butter


Mix cocoa powder, corn flour and water in a small bowl. Make sure there are no lumps.
Bring the water to a gentle simmer in a pan. Pour the corn flour and cocoa mixture into the simmering water while stirring continuously.
Stir till it thickens a little. Take the pan off from the heat and toss in the chocolate chips and mix.
Put the butter in and mix to get silky chocolate fudge sauce!!!

Peanut Butter Cups / Peppermint Patties

No, I haven’t gotten enough of chocolate; if that’s what you’re thinking! Like most of us girls , I daydream of it all day long! When I think of dessert, all I can think of is chocolate! That glistening chocolate fondant flowing down a scoop of chocolate ice-cream! That perfect bite of moist chocolate cake that makes your eyes roll in the back of your head! Those little chocolatey surprises you get with each bite from a perfect little chocolate chip cookie! *sigh* Anyways! Snap out of it! :P So, here’s another recipe for chocolate-freaks like me.

You’d like to think that there can never be anythin’ as good as chocolate! But there is! And that glorious food is peanut butter! Am I right or am i right??? :D And what’s better than the both of them??? Chocolate and peanut butter together!!! As soon as the idea hit my head, I thought of peanut-butter cups. and I had little blue silicon cups, I had bought spontaneously one day ‘coz they looked so cute and I just couldn’t abandon them in the lonely corner of the shelf at the store. At least that’s what I told my mum when she asked me why I bought them! Now all I had to do was to search for the perfect recipe. I started my search from this wonderful vegan blog I follow “BitterSweet” By Hannah Kaminsky, a fellow food-blogger. And I had to look no further ‘coz there they were!!! Peanut butter cups!!! I had to stop and drool over the pictures for a minute or two before I could start reading the recipe. :P Tried them out and needless to say they were perfect!!! You could even try the chocolate cups with peppermint filling (recipe by Hannah Kaminsky). Click here to go to the original recipe :)

I dedicate this recipe to my school friend “Shari” who shares my love for PB. NO, I’m wrong here. She doesn’t love PB, She is crazy for it!!! And that is the understatement of the year!  ;)
Try the recipe out and celebrate our obsession for chocolate and peanut-butter! ;) Cheerio!

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Chocolate Candy Cups

1 Cup Chocolate Chips

Peanut Butter filling:
1/2 Cup Creamy Peanut Butter
1/4 Cup Confectioner’s Sugar
Splash Vanilla Extract

Peppermint filling:
1/3 Cup Vegetable Shortening
2/3 Cup Confectioner’s Sugar
1/2 – 3/4 Tsp Peppermint Extract (depending on desired intensity)
Splash Vanilla Extract


For both treats, begin by melting your chocolate in the microwave 30 – 60 seconds at a time, and stir thoroughly until completely smooth(I melted my chocolate on a double boiler). Use a spoon, thin spatula, or paint brush to brush the melted chocolate over the insides of paper mini muffin cups, making sure to leave no holes and spread it as evenly as possible. No need to go crazy though, because even if the walls are too thin and break when removed from the wrapper, I doubt anyone will mind after they take a bite! You will only use about 1/2 – 3/4 of the chocolate, so set the rest aside for later. Place the chocolate-covered papers into mini muffin tins so that they retain their shape, and let them cool and set completely. You can speed up this process by placing the tins in your refrigerator.

To make the peanut butter filling, just stir together the peanut butter, sugar, and vanilla until completely homogeneous and toss the mixture into the microwave for 30 – 45, just to warm it through and liquefy slightly. Give it another good stir to combine everything again, and drop dollops of the filling into your prepared chocolate cups. Be careful not to rub the sides too much so as not to melt the chocolate, and fill each up to about 2 – 3 mm from the top. Let the filling cool completely.

To make the peppermint filling, place the shortening into a bowl and microwave it briefly until just melted. Add in the sugar and both extracts and stir everything together until smooth. Drop the mixture into the cups as described above for the peanut butter cups, and let cool.

Finally, take out the remaining chocolate and melt it back down into a liquid state. Spoon the chocolate onto each of the filled cups and spread it out to the edges to fill in any gaps. Let it cool once again until set, and enjoy!


Flapping my arms, walking in circles and making horrid throaty noises is something I often do when I’m absolutely jobless and dead bored!
Yeah! Laugh all you want! :/ :P
A while back when I was reading a few recipes online, I came across a very nice recipe for “Choux Pastry“. Though I had heard of choux
pastry before, reading out the word “choux pastry” aloud amused me! Don’t ask me why. ‘Coz i don’t know. :/ And there I went flapping my
arms, being all loopy and shrieking out the words “choux pastry” again and again and again! I could see that my absurdity was raising a few
eyebrows. My mum’s and my bro’s to be precise… And I knew it was time for me to shut up!
I fled the scene and got busy with picking out the ingredients from the pantry cupboard for the recipe. What tempted me to try this recipe out
was that it was sooo easy, and did not ask for many tricky, hard-to-find ingredients. Three simple steps and Voila! You are rewarded with
unbelievably cute blobs of yumminess! You could fill the profiteroles with vanilla custard or chocolate cream or anything you fancy! Give this recipe a go and I’m telling ya, you won’t regret it! Have fun!

Chocolate Cream


2 cups whole milk
4 large egg yolks
6 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons cornflour, sifted
¼ teaspoon salt
7 (200g) ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
2 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, at room temperature


To make the dark chocolate cream, heat the milk. In a heavy bottomed saucepan, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar, cornflour and salt until thick and well blended. Without stopping whisking, drizzle in about ¼ cup of the hot milk, then add the remainder of the milk in a steady stream. Put the pan over medium heat, and whisking vigorously, bring the mixture to a boil. Keep at a boil, still whisking for 1-2 minutes.

Remove the pan from the heat. Whisk in the melted chocolate and let stand for 5 minutes. In the meantime, fill the sink about a quarter full with water and ice cubes. Whisk in the pieces of butter, stirring until they are fully incorporated and the cream is smooth and silky.

Put the bowl into the ice filled sink, and stir occasionally until it is thoroughly chilled. Refrigerate with plastic pressed against the surface of the cream to avoid a skin forming.

Choux Pastry/Profiteroles 
(makes about 40)


100g unsalted butter
1 cup cold water
150g plain flour, sifted
4 eggs


1. To make the choux pastry, preheat the oven to 220°C (430°F) and line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper. Combine butter and water in a large saucepan and bring to the boil over high heat. Add flour and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon until mixture leaves the sides of the pan. Remove from the heat and cool for 10 minutes.

2. Add eggs to the mixture, beating vigorously to combine after each addition before adding the next. To make profiteroles, use either a piping bag or a spoon to make 3cm mounds on the baking tray.

3. Bake for 15 minutes. Prick pastries with a skewer or the tip of a small knife and bake for an additional 5 minutes until golden and dry. Cool profiteroles on a wire rack before filling with chocolate cream. Drizzle chocolate ganache(recipe below) on the profiteroles before serving.

NOTE: the profiteroles are hollow pastries. Poke a hole on one side and use piping bag to fill them with chocolate cream.

Chocolate Ganache


1 cup heavy cream
12 ounces of dark/semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla


Place the chopped chocolate in a medium heat resistant bowl.

Heat the cream in a saucepan over medium heat until it just reaches a boil. Immediately remove the pan from the heat and pour the cream over the chocolate. Stir gently to make sure all of the chocolate is covered by the cream and allow it to sit for a minute. Stir well, until it is smooth and blended. Add the vanilla and mix it in thoroughly. Use immediately.


Who would have thought you could bake an equally delicious cupcake without the very obvious ingredient “Egg”. At least I never did, until I came across this wonderful vegan chocolate cupcake recipe on These cuties fluff up so gorgeously in the oven; it is almost bewitching to look at. And the recipe is ever so simple. To get more of the chocolaty yumminess with every bite, I tossed in small chunks of milk chocolate in my batter! The result was splendid as you can see. Enjoy!


4 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour

3 cups white sugar

1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 cup vegetable oil

3 cups water

3 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). In a large bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, soda and salt. Add sugar and mix together. Add oil, water and vanilla and mix thoroughly. Pour the mixture into lined cupcake pans 3/4 full. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 15-20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in centre comes out clean.


 I thought I should start with somethin’ Chocolate. A yummy moist Chocolate Cupcake maybe? I stumbled upon this wonderful recipe a few months back on a lazy Sunday afternoon while browsing online for some new recipes to try. I don’t remember which website it was! But Cheers to whoever the recipe belongs to! :D  The original recipe had butter cream to go with their chocolate cupcakes but I went with chocolate glaze for mine! And don’t they look just heavenly!!!  You need these in your life. I tell you.

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I made the vegan version of these Yummies  for the girls at a mini-potluck we organized in college recently… And they loved the cupcakes so much, bless them. How do I know? Compliments aside, I was left with an odd fallen crumb or two. And I’m not complaining, no.

The cupcakes turn out sooo good… there will surely be calls for an encore by family and friends! Beware! Hehe! Here’s the recipe for the cupcakes and the chocolate glaze. Happy Munching!! 


(makes 40)


2 Cups boiling water

1 Cup unsweetened cocoa powder

2 3/4 Cups all purpose flour

2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 Cup butter

2 1/4 Cups white sugar

4 eggs

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 180. Whisk water and cocoa together until smooth, then refrigerate until room temperature. Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside. Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then beat in eggs one by one and mix in the vanilla. Add the flour and cocoa mixtures alternately, in fourths. When fully combined, pour the mixture into lined cupcake pans 3/4 full and bake 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in middle. My cupcakes took 25 minutes to bake. . . Allow to cool to room temperature.



1/2 cup unsalted butter

1/4 cup milk, warmed

2 tsp vanilla extract

100 grams bittersweet chocolate, chopped

2 cup icing sugar


Combine butter, milk, and vanilla in medium saucepan and heat over medium heat until butter is melted. Decrease the heat to low, add the chocolate, and whisk until melted. Turn off heat, add the icing sugar, and whisk until smooth. Place the mixture over a bowl of warm water and dip the cupcake tops immediately. Allow glaze to set for 30 minutes before serving.

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