Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Sunken Cherry Almond Muffins

The plate is a precious inheritance!  

It has become a habit of sorts now to make something special when I am visiting someone. A homemade gift always gets me the biggest smiles whether its the kids or the adults. Why would I not work hard for it then? But you know what psst... these muffins are really a breeze to make if you have ready made almond meal but even if you don't an additional 5 mins to just whiz the almonds in the grinder is not a big deal.

I love how the cherries sink in the muffins and the stalks are a telltale of the hidden sweetness also warning you not to bite at the stone in the fruit lest you break your teeth. The cherries are perfect fruit for baking and do not make the muffins jammy inside unlike other softer fruits but still hold a bite.

These muffins are wonderfully fragrant with almonds without using any essence or spice. Plus the almond meal fortifies the muffins with the protein while lending it a beautiful grainy texture. Brain food for the kids I hear you say.

These muffins turned out so good that C had two in go and also suggested that I sell confections thru the Eshop. I would love to do that but what I have observed is that most people are looking for a big bite in a small spend. There are very few people who really look at the quality of the things they buy and are willing to spend more. Some bloggers/ bakers are very conscious about what ingredients they use and also go all out to educate about the good stuff. However when it comes to making such products commercially viable is the real challenge!

It is strange that people will go to a mall and eat a dried out muffin with just one blueberry at a Coffee shop but haggle with home bakers that use good quality ingredients and are generous in their use too. On top of it delay in payments or even cutting the price after the product has been consumed. Just yesterday a baker friend was venting about this experience. I would like to appeal to people to support good products and honest businesses. You need them as much as they need you.

While I don't mean to step into Gourmet bakery products immediately I am all happy to make them for my family. Would you like to bake these gourmet muffins too? Follow the recipe without cutting corners.


1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 cup almond meal
3/4 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 cup molten ghee
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
2 dozen cherries

Preheat oven for 10 mins at 200 degrees Celsius.

In a large bowl sieve the all purpose flour and baking powder together. Mix in the almond meal. Keep aside.

In another bowl cream the ghee, salt and powder sugar together. Add the dry ingredients which we kept ready, at this point. Add milk to it and whisk till light. The batter should fall in folds.

Keep the muffin cups ready. For these muffins if using liners you do not need to prepare the tin there is enough fat in the muffins to allow the liners to peel off easily after baking. You will need 2 dozen muffin cups or tray with 24 pockets and 24 liners. I used these pleated cups which don't require a muffin tray and go into the oven directly. They hold well and I don't have to worry about a square muffin tray bringing the turntable to a halt while baking.

Fill the lined cups with a table spoon of batter and place 2 cherries in each cup. 

Bake the muffins at 180 degrees Celsius for 20 mins on till you get a golden top and the skewer poked into the muffin comes out clean.

Cool on the rack for atleast 15 mins. They are ready to eat or can be stored in a ziploc bag in the fridge for a week. Warm up while eating. The muffins are a lovely treat with the evening cuppa.

Bake some for your favorite people and bring sweetness to their life. 

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Contest 1 : Winners of Cookbooks and Food books

Thank you everyone of you who played along! This Contest 1 : Cookbooks and Food books was fun wasn't it?

It is so wonderful to see you all again on the blog even if I see you regularly on FB. A comment on the blog just makes us bloggers so happy and from the dwindling comments to see so many of you commenting here is truly rejuvenating this blog and me.

So before I announce the winners I am sure you are curious to know what's on display in the last post and the story of each of that book or booklet starting from the top left.

1. Desi Health Bites ebook that includes two recipes contributed by me for Fortune Foods Blogger program.
2. The many recipe booklets that came with appliances and recipe cards collected from random sources.
3. The Tupperware recipe booklet that came with the gift from IFBM. ( Many thought it was a catalogue)
4. Annapoorna by Mangala Barve, a gift by Shalini Pise. The yellowness and tatters tells I started cooking from it at a very early age. It is my go to cookbook.
5. Cooking on the Run by Boria Majumdar, it recommends cooking as a survival skill for single men, written in a humorous style and a lot of cricket analogies.
6. Healthy Delights the only recipe videos on a CD I have! gift from Fortune Foods.
7. New Concise Larousse Gastronomique that I managed to fly free while returning from IFBM.
8. Ruchira 1 & 2 by Kamalabai Ogale which I won as a prize for a contest in support of Anti-plagiarism.
9. The Gore family cookbook by Saee Koranne Khandekar is a gift from the author herself and my blogger buddy of years.
10. OM Cooking is a gift by The Marathe family. It consists of vegetarian recipes that are fun to cook. Its a publication from Chinmaya Mission.
11. A Pinch of This, A Handful of That by our most successful blogger buddy Rushina Munshaw-Ghildiyal. I received it as a gift from her at the Maharashtrian Mejwani.
12. The Taj Magazine 2010 edition which has the Chef's favorites. I love cooking some fancy dishes from it.
13. Jamva Chaloji 1 &2 by Katy Dalal
14. Sea food fiesta by Katy Dalal
15.Vitality by Katy Dalal. All the four books are my favorite books for Parsi cuisine. It helps to have Kurush and Rhea as friends who carry Katy's legacy. They are ever available to answer question on Parsi cuisine when I need help.
16. Morrison's Magazine is gifted by Reva Hart. I love it for all the summer fruit recipes in this edition.

So this list does not have Following Fish and it is the odd one out ofcourse! It is a foodbook and not a cookbook. It is a compilation of essays by Samanth Subramanian narrating his fascinating trips covering the coast of India, the importance of fish as food, medicine and the culture along the vast Indian peninsula.

Those of you who got that right. Congratulations! The top three winners are:

Manasi of A Cook @ Heart

She gets a Taster pack of Masalas as she did not mention her pick we think she will like a bit of all our masalas.


Nikita of A real housewife

She receives a pack of Gondavale Goda Masala which is her fave pick as she loves all types of Goda masalas and we think she will love our aromatic blend.


Kavita Shewale

She receives one large jar of Orange Marmalade made from the best Kinnow oranges with its very citrusy slightly bitter aftertaste from the thinly sliced skin.


Pl. mail the shipping address to annaparabrahmaATgmailDOTcom. We will promptly send your prizes so you can enjoy them.

I enjoyed reading each and every comment. Some of you are old  friends and some of you have delurked here to participate in this effort of bringing back the conversations on to the blog and so you deserve a special thank you!

Veena thank you for the wonderful insight on the various cookbooks and foodbooks and I am glad this post compelled you to comment here. It would be fantastic to meet you over a cup of Chai and talk about food, food and just food. Watch your inbox!

See you for now and there is the next Contest coming up, guess what is the topic?

On Trail