Eid Eats 2014 & Chocolate Covered Salted Caramel Ice Cream Stars

Hello everyone and welcome to the first of many Eid Eats! Eid Eats is a virtual Eid potluck party hosted by Asiya at Chocolate and Chilies and myself. Whether you are celebrating Eid this coming week or not you should keep an eye on this post for some delicious inspiration courtesy of some incredible bloggers.

To my Muslim friends I wish you an early Eid Mubarak – hope us bloggers provide you with some scrumptious ideas for your upcoming festivities! Just scroll to the end to see what yummies have been prepared for this wonderful occasion and to submit your blog post as well.

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Today I am bringing to you a dessert that is part recipe and part idea. In other words you can make it like I did or take the idea and run with it. Either way it should be tons of fun :)

Some time ago I had made this star shaped kulfi and since Eid and Chaand Raat (the night the new moon is spotted signifying the end of Ramadan and the beginning of Eid) reminds me of all things celestial I thought I would go with a fun spin on that idea. I present to you homemade salted caramel icecream in a star shaped chocolate shell with a smattering of edible gold stars scattered across the top.

Chocolate Covered Salted Caramel Icecream Stars w Edible Gold Stars

It is beautiful, luscious, and decadent all at the same time making it utterly celebration worthy.

Now obviously you can use any ice cream that you like, but do remember that a chocolate coating adds an element of sweetness so a less sweet ice cream is ideal. If you have an ice cream machine then this recipe is a must try.

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Chocolate Covered Salted Caramel Ice cream Stars

Chocolate Shells:

6 Star Shaped Silicon Chocolate Moulds (or whatever shape your heart desires, individual silicon ones are easiest to pop out)
3 cup melted chocolate chips or dark cocoa candy melts

The idea is simple. Spoon some melted chocolate into the bottom of each mould, and then briskly paint it out with a brush. Let it harden in the fridge and then fill with softened – or freshly churned – ice cream. Let harden – 3-4 hours, and then pipe over a layer of melted chocolate. Tap to set, freeze.

However, there are some tips that will make all the difference in how they turn out. Take this from someone who destroyed a few and learnt from her mistakes:-

* When painting the mould err on the side of thickness, too thin a form can easily crack once unmolded.
*Gently but firmly tap the mould against the counter once you paint in a star to even out the chocolate
* Clean the outside edges of the mould to make sure your final product has clean lines
* Check and recheck for spots that require a touch up of melted chocolate
* The ice cream needs to be rock solid when you add the final chocolate layer
* Do not overfill the mould with ice cream as the base part of the chocolate has to ‘connect’ with the chocolate sides. Excess ice cream stops that from happening.

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When you go to unmould gently loosen the sides first then press the base of the mould to get the star out. Sprinkle with these pretty things just before serving

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Salted Caramel Ice cream
(Recipe from Epicurious, makes 1 quart)

1 1/4 cups sugar, divided
2 1/4 cups heavy cream, divided
1/2 teaspoon flaky sea salt such as Maldon
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup whole milk
3 large eggs

Heat 1 cup sugar in a dry 10-inch heavy skillet over medium heat, stirring with a fork to heat sugar evenly, until it starts to melt, then stop stirring and cook, swirling skillet occasionally so sugar melts evenly, until it is dark amber.

Add 1 1/4 cups cream (mixture will spatter) and cook, stirring, until all of caramel has dissolved. Transfer to a bowl and stir in sea salt and vanilla. Cool to room temperature.

Meanwhile, bring milk, remaining cup cream, and remaining 1/4 cup sugar just to a boil in a small heavy saucepan, stirring occasionally.

Lightly whisk eggs in a medium bowl, then add half of hot milk mixture in a slow stream, whisking constantly. Pour back into saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until custard coats back of spoon and registers 170°F on an instant-read thermometer (do not let boil). Pour custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl, then stir in cooled caramel.

Chill custard, stirring occasionally, until very cold, 3 to 6 hours. Freeze custard in ice cream maker (it will still be quite soft), then use it for the moulds or transfer to an airtight container and put in freezer to firm up. I used roughly half my icecream for six moulds.

Blogger friends submit your links here and remember the rules for the virtual pot luck. Happy reading/salivating to all – hope this inspires your yummiest Eid to date!

 

Three Things Thursday

Hello all you awesome people and here is this weeks Three Things Thursday. Happy Reading!

Thing One: Cronuts

This past weekend I walked by a bakery and saw cronuts and I had to have them. You know largely because I had seen them on tv and the tv peeps told me they were good and everything on tv is clearly true. Lol. But check it out: doesn’t this bakery look super pretty? In my fantasy world where I run a cute bakery cafe it has displays that look roughly like this.

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Anyway, back to said cronut. It was more like a layered donut than a layered croissant in the sense that the dough was flaky, but with the soft chew of a donut. Definitely yummy, but not something I think I would crave. Or use in the place of a burger bun (apparently that’s a thing).

Thing Two: Off with the Hair 

My hair had gotten pretty long and out of shape. You know when I start wearing hats that there are some serious issues at hand.

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So then I did this.

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I think it was last this short in school and although I seem to be getting a lot of responses along the lines of a sympathetically phrased “it will grow out” I actually don’t mind it at all.

Oh and the baby bjorn really is a permanent feature at this point!

Thing Three:  I Get By With a Little Help From My Friends

Baby No 2 is a happy baby and I am so very blessed to have her in my life. But the kid won’t sleep at night. Between the frequent wakings and the combined demands of my two during the day I have become quite crabby and a little crazy. The other day at a playdate/lunch I turned to a friend and said I hate myself, I really do. And instead of telling me why I shouldn’t etc etc she said I get it and started to tell me why.

Sometimes it is good to be gotten. Yes, yes, I know that is grammatically incorrect in 100 different ways.

Oh and thank you – you know who you are :)

Thanks for stopping by and do check out the other Three Things Thursday bloggers at The Write Balance, Pink Chai Living, and Love Laugh Mirch!

Aalu Gobi – Spicy Potato and Cauliflower Curry

This one’s for me. I know, I know, that sounds terrible. But it is.

It is so hard to cook like someone else, but for people like me who grew up only eating their mothers cooking so much of our sense of what food ought to taste like comes from mama. The other day I had this sudden craving for this dish, but truth is I had never made it before and I have had several versions of it which I do not like very much. So I took a risk, called my mother and this is the recipe she gave me. And it works. Mama Jafri, bless her heart, isn’t necessarily the most accurate recipe relayer – often times when I would complain about how something didn’t turn out well she would say “oohhh… but if you wanted to make it really good then you should have…”

Aalu Gobi / Spicy Potato and Cauliflower

Like on what planet am I aiming to cook mediocre food?

Anyway, points to Mama J on this one.

The reason I say this one is for me is this: I cannot afford to lose it. And if I scribbled it down  on a piece of paper somewhere then I most certainly would. Seemed best to put it out in the internet-verse where others can have access to it as well.

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Double Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

I made these cookies in a  rush as I was meeting some people at the park and had to get out of the door. When I got around to having them at said park I liked them, but I can’t say I loved them you know. Then I came home and had half the  dough left so I baked more cookies and when I bit into them… oh my. These were good.

Double Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

It’s like a fridge is a magic machine – amazing things just happen sometimes when you let things be in there. Especially cookie doughs with butter and caramelly brown sugar. The flavors develop more, the cookies become more moist and presto we go from good to great.

IMG_6351Moral of the story: rest the dough for a few hours :)

These are thin, a little chewy, dark, deep and not too sweet. The oatmeal adds some texture to the cookie and the chips are purely optional – feel free to leave them out.

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Three Things Thursday – XV

Hello my people! It is Three Things Thursday time so as usual I hope you have fun reading through and do pop over to my hosts Salma at The Write Balance, Raj at Pink Chai Living, and Nisha at Love Laugh Mirch.

Thing One: Ramzan/Ramadan Mubarak!

I realized some time after my last post went up that I never actually said that! Count on me  to skip mentioning the fasting-related event and go straight to the eating-related one. Apologies for the oversight, wishing my Muslim readers a happy and healthy Ramzan.

Thing Two: Like a Girl

Watch. Now. Please.

Thing Three: Bookshelves

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Want some easy access bookshelves for the kids? Just grab a few rain gutters and the handiest person you know – in this case my incredible husband and voila! Lol of course this wasn’t quite like magic for him since he had to do all the work, but am I good at providing ideas or what!?! hehehe

Thanks for stopping by!

 

Baked Samosas and Eid Party Details!

I’m  backkkkk …. guys isn’t it a little ridiculous how much something as well… common…as the common cold can really get you down? I usually escape these sorts of things, but this time round it got the best of me for a few days – throw teething and the usual sleep deprivation into the mix and well… it hasn’t been pretty round here.

On to happier things – and we have two of them today. One is Eid Eats, the virtual Eid party Asiya at Chocolate & Chillies and I are hosting and the other is a lovely baked samosa recipe that is from Asiya’s blog.

Eid-ul-Fitr has always had a soft spot in my heart – and not just because of the money/’fitri’ we got as kids from all of our relatives ;)  This is the Eid where my family would host an ‘open house’, a way for everyone to get together to celebrate this wonderful occasion. While the traditional sivaiyan and samosas would usually be present at these occasions there would also be some things that I had never made before. This is where I got to experiment and have fun.

final eid eats

In the spirit of those good times I would like to ask you all to join our virtual Eid party, Eid Eats. Here is how it would work:-

1.) Make any dish of your choosing that you would make for Eid – something new, something old, either goes – write a post and have it ready for the 25th of July 2014.

2.) Link back to both our blogs i.e. Flour & Spice and Chocolate & Chillies and use the button above in all of your posts (pretty cute isn’t it!)

3.) On July 25th, Asiya and I will have our posts up – do remember to add your post to the link up.

4.) Remember to visit and leave comments on participating blogs – who doesn’t like a little bit of love :)

Also some of you may recall that Henna at My Ninja Naan was originally supposed to be my co-host, but has had to bow out owing to personal circumstances. Hopefully next year :)

Now on to the yumminess at hand.

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A Samosa needs no introduction; this rendition escapes the deep fryer and instead gets a crispy baked exterior with the added flavour punch of ajwain or carom seeds.  I intended to use Asiya’s exact recipe for the filling, but was out of peas and threw in cilantro for some freshness. Folks this one is a keeper. And I am not just saying that because standing over a deep fryer in summer is no fun. The exterior is flaky and flavorful and the spicy filling is simple, but oh-so-good.

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Reduced Fat Spinach and Corn Mac and Cheese

Okay people I know it’s summer and you’re thinking “Mac and Cheese? Really???”, but trust me on this one. Or rather, trust Vaish at Chefette Spicy on this one.

When I saw this post of hers I knew I had to make it. I frantically added the ingredients to my grocery list and went out that night (at 9) to do groceries so I could make this pasta happen asap. Also my fridge was weirdly empty and that was just freaking me out. Just fyi, I am now at the other extreme and equally freaked out.

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Corn, spinach, and cheese. What’s not to love? I usually find that ‘lightened’ up versions of dishes just don’t work for me, but Vaish clearly knows what she is doing because this recipe is DELICIOUS. Like really, really freakin’ good. And you know the desi in me couldn’t help, but add a few green chilies – and then the desi of me remembered she had a jar of Sambal Oelek in her fridge…I am not a fan of hot sauce on everything, but on this it really works. 

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