Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Flamingo cake for Rithika's 11th Birthday

 Stand tall my darling!!!!

Every year I make themed birthday cake for my daughter's birthday. Over the years I have taught myself, through trial and error, to make some pretty neat  cakes. I loved baking and decorating each of them. And I think this is the most beautiful cake I have ever made.

This is a classic 1- 2 -3 -4 cake filled with lemon curd and layered with orange butter cream frosting. Due to pandemic, there was no big birthday party this year. Just a birthday cake and a special lunch with family.  I made  3 six inch cakes 2 days before birthday party. Crumb coated and finished the cake with fondant. Topper is made with fondant and gum paste. And the highlight of the cake - Feathers, they are with wafer paper. I hand-painted 40 feathers and air dried for 10hours. Adding real gold leaf to the cake was another surprise for my daughter.  



Wednesday, January 6, 2021



Ingredients :

Shrimp : 15, medium pieces, cleaned and deveined
Raw banana/ pachakkaaya : 1, slice lengthwise half and chop into triangles
Onion : 1, chopped
Ginger : 1/2 inch piece, chopped
Green Chili : 2, chopped
Garlic : 2 cloves, finely chopped
Curry leaves : springs
Gambooge/ kudambuli : 3 pieces, soak in warm water for 30 minutes

For the roasted gravy :

Grated coconut : 1 Cup
Turmeric Powder :1/2 tsp
Chilly Powder : 1/2 tbsp
Fennel seeds / perumjeerakam1/4tsp(optional)
Coriander powder : 1/2 tbsp
Coconut Oil : 1tsp + 1tbsp

Method :

1. Make the roasted coconut masala  :  Heat a skillet on Low - medium flame and add shredded coconut. Stir fry till the coconut turns into a golden brown color.   Now add fennel seeds, chili powder and coriander powder and fry for 2 more minutes. Turn off the flame and add turmeric powder. Let it cool. ( To speed up this roasting process, you can add 2 tsp of coconut oil and fry coconut in medium flame to get the dark golden brown color easily). When the coconut cools down, add few tablespoons of water and grind into a smooth paste.

2. Onion masala Using a mixer crush together onion, ginger, green chillies, garlic and curry leaves.Heat 1tsp coconut oil and add this crushed onion masala paste.  After 4-5 mins, when the masala start changing color, add the ground coconut paste, raw banana slices, salt and water (around 1.5 cups - 2 cups). 

3. Make the gravy : Add drained gambooge pieces to the gravy and allow to boil. When the gravy starts to thicken,  add the  fish pieces. Swirl the pan to make sure that the fish pieces are coated well with the masala. Cover and cook. Switch off the gas and add 1 tbsp coconut oil and curry leaves. Let it rest for a while for the flavor to settle in. Color of this curry will deepen as it rests.

4. Serve hot with rice / appam / kappa :)