Rose – flavored Phirni/Rice Pudding with my two cents on Life

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Flipping through the pages of this novel I got my hands on recently, The fault in our stars; I came across a line delivered by the narrator’s brazen love interest, Gus. “The world is not a wish-granting factory”.

A brooder that I am, this seemingly insignificant line got me thinking. How often we take everything in life for granted, just waiting for things to happen to us. Rather than working towards them. Whining, searching for a reason to lift our fingers. Or an excuse to not.

For example, just when a rare “black” sheep breaks free from the flock with some exciting new idea of his/her own. The next millisecond he/she comes up with a million reasons why he/she shouldn’t (these reasons often fed by his own family or “friends”). Thus snuffing out the fire within themselves. Cautious is he? No, a fool!

That teeny tiny voice in your heart screaming ideas at you? Take them! and LIVE them! Don’t wait for those ideas to add to your bucket list! Don’t plan to live. Just live!

Granted, there will be a few hiccups or maybe even a long coma along the way. But then it will all be worth it, when you look back. cause there’d be no “I should have” but rather ” I did or tried”.

You might encounter a mawkish flock along the way who’d discourage you from following your dreams for some weird cynical reason or just ’cause they are comfortable with the “average” you.

Walk away!!! NOW! You’ll thank me later. . .

Point is, If you have to get somewhere, you need to get out of somewhere. Make people smile, but not at the cost of your own. Don’t judge. Make your own mistakes. Learn. And move on.

Start realizing your dreams today. Life does not wait for mere mortals like us.

Ah well… let me get my brooding bum off of my bed and conquer the world. :P

Meanwhile, make a pit stop and enjoy the Rose Phirni Recipe, the new Special tradition I plan to set for Eid, starting this year! ‘Cause it’s just soooo YUMMM!!! :)

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Ingredients:

50 gms Basmati Rice
1 litre Full cream Milk
1 cup or less white Sugar
1/2 tsp Cardamom Powder
1 tbsp Rose Water
Almonds/Pistachios (Sliced/Crushed)

Directions:

Soak rice in water for 30 minutes, drain completely and grind to a fine powder.
Make a thin paste with the rice powder and water. Set aside.
Bring milk to a boil and lower the heat. Stir in the rice paste and keep stirring to avoid clumping.
Cook for 30 minutes or more till the rice is done and you get the consistency of a thick custard.
Pour in the sugar while stirring. The mixture thins as the sugar melts. Keep stirring and bring back to the thick consistency.
Add cardamom powder and cook for 5 minutes.
Turn off the heat and mix in rose water.
Pour into individual bowls and set in the fridge overnight.
Garnish with almonds & pistachios and serve!

SUE YOU FAKE TIRAMISU!!! (for being so unbelievably yummy!)

How many times have you heard yourself say “How I wish I could create that awesome dessert in my own kitchen!” when you are out on a dinner date with your family or friends at a swanky restaurant? “Tiramisu” I feel, falls in that category of desserts (the one that makes you yearn for the recipe!) with its smooth and creamy yumminess with just a hint of coffee that sings on your palate and make your toes curl with every spoonful!!! Mmmm!!! Even if you do find the perfect recipe, many a time you fall short of an ingredient or two ‘coz some ingredients are difficult to come by around your place. I faced this predicament when I went out in search of Mascarpone Cheese. Surprisingly, it was nowhere to be found! At least not for a very long time. Finally when I was done dragging my bum to every possible food store here, and was just about to give up, there they were!!! Sitting proud and staring at me from their roost were perfect little packets of mascarpone! But when I looked at the price tag, my heart skipped a beat! Sigh! They were sadly too expensive for a college-going girl that I am and them being of an imported brand and all, I ended up not buying the cheese at all…

On a happy note, the recipe I’m gonna share with you requires absolutely no mascarpone!!! Yup! That’s right! No mascarpone! So people who find it hard to get their hands on some, but are craving for some tiramisu can try this recipe out. I got this recipe from a friend, and it’s a hit with my family!  This recipe is the closest you can get to an authentic Tiramisu without using any mascarpone. You might find it a tad too sweet! But who’s complaining right?!! Keep in mind, this recipe is meant to pacify your taste buds. Nothing can replace the real thing. But this recipe is almost as good is all I’m saying.

I make this dessert using the trial and error method. there’s no set measurement for the ingredients. But for your convenience I gave the nearest measurements that i use. And hey! i even Indianized the whole dessert by sprinkling pistachio and almond slivers on top. :P Look at the pictures. Wicked right?? :P Enjoy!!

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Ingredients:

1 1/2 can condensed milk
3/4 cup whip cream powder
2 tbsp milk powder
Milk/cream as required
Tea biscuits or lady fingers as required
A few tsp Coffee powder
Water

Method:

STEP 1- Put the condensed milk, whip cream powder, milk powder in a blender and blend till smooth for about 3 minutes. Check the consistency of the mixture. It should be like a thick custard. If its too thick, add some milk or cream and blend again. Or if the mixture is too thin, blend in some more of the whip cream powder. Set aside.

STEP 2- In a wide bowl put 1/3 cup water and 2 tsp coffee powder and mix well. Keep a serving dish(preferrably rectangular/square) ready. Dip one biscuit in the coffee concoction at a time and place them in your dish to cover the bottom.

STEP 3- Now pour half of the mixture prepared in step 1 over the biscuit layer. Then create another layer of biscuits soaked in coffee, gently placing them over the condensed milk mix. Then pour the rest of the mixture from the blender over this second layer of biscuits. Put the dish in the mid-freezer overnight. Decorate and serve the next day!!!! *slurrrrpppp*

Note: 1 can of condensed milk = 400g

VEGAN CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES

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 allrecipes.com. 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!

Ingredients:

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

Directions:

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.

CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES WITH CHOCOLATE GLAZE

 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!! 

CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES

(makes 40)

Ingredients:

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

Directions:

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.

FOR THE GLAZE

Ingredients:

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1/4 cup milk, warmed

2 tsp vanilla extract

100 grams bittersweet chocolate, chopped

2 cup icing sugar

Directions:

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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