Month: July 2014

Choux Trouble – Fig and Mascarpone Puffs

Fig and Mascarpone Choux Puffs by Yudhika Sujanani

Fig and Mascarpone Choux Puffs by Yudhika Sujanani

The first time I made choux puffs was when I was about 16 years old. My mom was a huge fan of the Food and Home magazine and there was a feature on choux pastries which I found intriguing. I marched myself to the kitchen with my mother egging me on to make up a batch and they turned out perfect.

This started a craze and the Saturday arvie Swiss Roll was replaced by Profiteroles or Eclairs. The pastry was filled with scoops of fresh cream and then drizzled with chocolate. For some reason, I can’t even remember why, we just stopped making them. I have been working on some recipes for Eid, and remember that these puffs are a Persian favourite. They are called Nan Khameii.

I created these with a fig and mascarpone cream – ordinary whipped cream tends to flop after a bit and makes these pastries go soggy. The thicker the cream, the better the puff. I have tried these with chopped dried figs in the cream but much prefer a swirl of good red fig jam instead.

Fig and Mascarpone Puffs – Nan Khameii

Ingredients

For the choux pastry:
250ml cold water
125g butter, cubed
140g cake flour
Pinch of salt
4 large eggs

In a thick bottomed pan, bring the water and butter on a medium heat until the butter melts.
Add the flour and salt, then stir until the mixture forms a ball and leaves the sides of the pan.
Remove from the heat, and leave to cool until slightly warm.

Cooking up the flour butter and water in an AMC pot!

Cooking up the flour butter and water in an AMC pot!

Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees celsius.
Beat the eggs into the mixture, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Pipe the mixture onto a greased baking tray leaving enough room in between them.

Piped choux pastry on a baking sheet

Piped choux pastry on a baking sheet

Bake for 10 minutes then reduce the temperature to 180 degrees celsius and bake for 20 minutes.
Switch off the oven and leave to cool in the oven.

Pretty and puffed!

Pretty and puffed!

For the filling

2 x tubs Mascarpone Cream
2ml vanilla paste or essence
120ml icing sugar
50ml red fig jam

70g white chocolate, melted

Place the cream and vanilla into a mixing bowl, then whisk while gradually adding the icing sugar.
Continue whisking the cream until stiff.
Stir the fig jam into the cream.
Slice through the puff and fill with cream.
Drizzle white chocolate over the puff to garnish.

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The Eid Burfee Challenge….

Coconut and Pistachio Burfee by Yudhika Sujanani

Coconut and Pistachio Burfee by Yudhika Sujanani

It’s that time of year ago and once again, I headed back to the kitchen to test and develop more recipes for Eid.  I  came up with a selection of recipes and took a look at it only to realize that it would just not be Eid without a Burfee recipe.  After a chat to the food editor, Jenny Kay, it was back to the drawing board.

 

 

It does become a challenge…every year around Eid and Diwali there are requests for burfee recipes.  Last year, I did a rose and pistachio burfee https://yudhikayumyum.com/2013/10/29/rose-and-pistachio-burfee/

 

This time, I decided to play around with coconut and pistachios and I came up with a delicious creamy version of this old favourite.  I love just love coconut…desiccated, freshly grated, milk or just as is.

 

If you are looking for a new burfee recipe, this might be the one for you!

 

Coconut and Pistachio Burfee

500g Klim milk powder
145g dessert cream

125g butter
125ml sugar
1 x tin condensed milk
145g dessert cream
2 x 400g tins coconut milk
Green food colouring, to tint
125ml icing sugar
5ml ground cardamom
Edible gold leaf, to decorate
Pistachios, to decorate


Rub the cream into the milk powder until the mixture resembles crumbs.  
Set aside for 60 – 90 minutes.
Grease a 20 x 20cm casserole dish with non stick spray or butter.
Line the dish with plastic wrap, leaving some of the wrap draped over the sides of the dish.  
Grease the plastic wrap with non stick spray or butter.
Place the mixture into a food process in batches and blitz until the crumbs are fine ground.
Combine the butter, sugar, condensed milk, dessert cream and coconut milk in an AMC sauce pan and bring to the boil.
Reduce the heat and simmer while stirring continuously to ensure it does not scorch.  This does take some time – don’t rush as if this is cream is not thick enough the burfee will not set properly.

Once the mixture reaches the consistency of thick custard, remove from the heat and add a few drops of food colouring.

Add the milk powder in batches and stir well.
Lastly stir in the icing sugar and ground cardamom.
Pour the mixture into the prepared dish, and leave in a refrigerator to set overnight.
Loosen the excess plastic and lift the burfee out of the dish.
Slice the burfee into cubes, wiping the knife with warm damp dishcloth.
Garnish with gold leaf and pistachios.

Way Down South…..

South Indian Madras Style Chicken by Yudhika Sujanani

South Indian Madras Style Chicken by Yudhika Sujanani


I just got back from a few days in Durban…its been ages since my last proper visit and I was surprised at just how much I really missed my home city. I ate lots, feasted on the most delicious home cooked meals but most of all friends and family were a sight for my sore eyes. I returned to Jozi without having switched my laptop on once. I hired a car and a Garmin and headed off for my old haunts and started my tour in Isipingo, just south of Durban, where I grew up.

The lovely Mrs Deedat and I at Isipingo beach Intermediate School...

The lovely Mrs Deedat and I at Isipingo beach Intermediate School…

While I was in Durbs, I visited my first primary school teacher, Mrs Deedat and got to take a walk around the school in Isipingo Beach. Mrs Deedat went on to become the head mistress at the school. She would line us up everyday as the bell rang, and give us a goodbye kiss. The students would get quite fiercely competitive about bringing her treats and flowers….I always brought her flowers that I picked from the garden. She retires in just a few months and I am so glad that we could take a walk down memory lane with this beautiful lady.

I was thoroughly spoilt in Durban….from fresh linefish breyani made by Shabnum Moosa’s parents to dinners out and then chicken curry for Saturday brunch. Long lazy chats over numerous cups of coffee, high tea at the Oyster Box and fried rice from Tong Lok! Durban is not the place to be if you are trying to stick to the Tim Noakes diet!!! It was just an all round treat not to mention being in such good company just gladdened my rather overworked Jozi soul!

Crispy fish at Gateway's Beluga....

Crispy fish at Gateway’s Beluga….

For those of you, who like me, have lazy days, you can always pop into the Holi Cow in Fourways to pick up a takeaway for dinner or learn how to make delicious curries by joining one of our fun cooking classes! Call us on 011 4672661 to book your spot! All ingredients and recipes are provided.

Cooking Class Update: Curry 101 Hands on Class – learn how to use spices to make delicious spicy meals in a flash….Lamb Rogan Josh, Chicken Korma, Coconut Prawn, Mushroom and Chickpea Curry, Rotis and Chocolate Ganache Cake. The duration of the class is two hours and is followed by a delicious lunch.

Date: Saturday, 12th July 2014
Time: 10 for 10.30am
Cost: R375 per person

Cooking Class Update: The Curry Trail – learn how to use your spices to make curries from around Asia….Lamb Vindaloo, Sri Lankan Chicken Curry, Thai Green Prawn, Paneer in Almond Sauce, Rotis and Coconut Creme Brulees. The duration of the class is two hours and is followed by a sit down dinner.

Date: Wednesday, 16th July 2014
Time: 6 for 6.30pm
Cost: R375 per person

Cooking Class Update: Spice Spice Baby…learn how to add spices to your everyday meals to cook up quick and easy fuss free meals. Traditional Lamb Curry, Creamy Chicken Curry, Mushroom Mattar, Balti Prawn Curry, Samosas and Boozy Cream Cake. The duration of the class is two hours long and is followed by a sit down dinner.

Date: Wednesday, 23rd July 2014
Time: 6 for 6.30pm
Cost: R375 per person

And now, for the recipe…I missed carbs terribly over the past few weeks…I am preparing this South Indian Madras Style Chicken for dinner tonight and serving it with rotis and rice…double the carbs…double the fun! It’s spicy chicken cooked with mustard seeds, cardamom pods and cinnamon sticks….fired up with red chilli powder and finished with my signature Magic Masala! Hope you love it as much as I do!

South Indian Madras Style Chicken….

Ingredients:

1,2 – 1,4kg Whole Chicken
75ml sunflower oil
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
2 cardamom pods
5ml mustard seeds
1 large onion, finely chopped
7,5ml coarse salt
4 cloves garlic, crushed
10ml crushed ginger
40ml red chilli powder
10ml ground coriander
5ml ground cumin
5ml garam masala
2,5ml turmeric
2 tinned tomatoes, chopped
1 x 400g tin Spar coconut cream
15ml Curry Me Home magic masala
2 sprigs fresh curry leaves
Fresh coriander, to garnish

Remove the chicken skin, disjoint and cut into pieces.
Rinse the chicken under cold running water and leave in a colander to drain.
Pat the chicken pieces dry with absorbent paper towel.
Heat the sunflower oil in an AMC pot.
Add the bay leaf, cinnamon stick and cardamom pods.
Saute until fragrant and then add the mustard seeds.
When the mustard seeds begin to splutter, add the chopped onion and salt.
Saute until the onion is golden brown.
Add the crushed ginger and garlic.
Stir the red chilli powder into the fried onion and stir for a few seconds.
Add the chicken and stir well to coat the pieces in fried onion mixture.
Continue stirring until the chicken pieces are sealed.
Add the ground coriander, cumin, garam masala and turmeric.
Gently stir the chicken to coat in the spices.
Use a wooden spoon to scrape the bottom of the pot to loosen the spices that are stuck.
Add the chopped tomatoes and lower the heat.
The moisture from the tomatoes will help de-glaze the pot.
Cover the pot with a lid and simmer until the chicken is cooked through.
Simmer uncovered until the sauce thickens and coats the chicken.
Add the coconut milk, magic masala and curry leaves.
Simmer for 2 minutes.
Remove from the heat and garnish with fresh coriander.
Serve with basmati rice or rotis.

Yudhika’s tips:
The chicken can be cooked in advance – add the coconut cream just before serving to prevent the sauce from thickening too much.
For a lighter dish, add 200ml coconut milk instead of the coconut cream.