A Matter Of A Teaspoon

Today I won’t be sharing any recipe with you guys. Because, today I’m going to tell you a story. A story with a bold moral lesson. A lesson that was learned the very hard way, unfortunately.

It’s a story about a girl – a baker who was perfectly running a home-based bakery and selling customized cakes and other party food items on a regular basis. Business was good, she was receiving ravishing reviews about her cakes and she was pretty happy and content with her life.

She had three customied cakes orders for three consequetive days. Two went absolutely well, the client left a wonderful thank you message after the party, the other client took time out to give her a thank you call for her lovely cake – her lovely effort. And now was the third day – third cake.

The customer was a bit particular about the taste and the overall feel of the cake and she was super excited. She baked her perfect chocolate cake, the oh-so-amazing chocolate frosting and then the perfect yellow icing to go on top. It was a Pac-Man theme cake. Everything was going perfect. The chocolate cake looked amazing, got frosted and filled and was now chilling in the refrigerator. Then came the yellow icing for the top. She made her regular fool-proof icing, dyed it yellow, cracked open a fresh bottle of vanilla essence, took a teaspoon of it, mixed and voila!

A Day Before

The day before when she was giving a final check to her ingredients list, she found out that she had run out of vanilla essence. She rushed to the super market and got herself two bottles of vanilla essence. It was a new brand, a brand she hadn’t used before, so it’s good to start with less. “After all when we can’t find our favorite brand of butter, well we find another brand and that is good enough. And besides, I’ll only be using a tsp of it in the icing, so any brand would do,”, she thought to herself.

Anyways, the cake was made well before time, got frosted, and was then delivered to the client. Did I mention it was the month of Ramadan and she was fasting. So, she kept the shavings and a spare layer of the chocolate cake along with the leftover frosting for iftari. The cake was delieverd, everything went well.

And then came the moment of truth. On Iftari she made tea so, she could enjoy the chocolate cake with a hot cuppa cha. Grabbed a magazine and started reading an article while she took a bite of the cake. Emmm “wait a second“, she exclaimed with eyes popping open. Threw the magazine on the ouch and took another bite. And then another, stick her finger into the frosting on top and licked it with her finger. Something was wrong, she had wrnkle between her eyes, as she rushed to the kictehn and started throwing things into a bowl.

Testing after adding every ingredient that went into the bowl. Nothing seemed to be bad, all was good, it was her perfect, fool-proof recipe, that she always makes.”What went wrong then“, she said to herself. What could it be. She looked awfully worried. And then she added the last ingredient, the newly bought vanilla essence. Tasted it after adding the vanilla and there, it was the moment of truth. The vanilla had a slight taste to it and previously she had been using a tasteless vanilla essence. The culprit was caught and brought to justice. She was never going to use new products on her business cakes without testing them before at home.

But still she felt guilty. Didn’t have the guts to call the client and apologize. Instead she wrote a post about it and e-mailed him. With a hope that he will not hold it against her. The customer was not related to her, it was his first time. She could have easily looked over it and carried on but, it was not just about cakes and business, it was much more than that. It was about trust. Trust she couldn’t afford to lose. It wouldn’t let her sleep at night.

Moral of the story

Never, ever, ever, EVER use new products into what-so-ever you are cooking especially cakes even if they are to be used in small amounts.

Bad things happen to good people also.

Posted in Things you don't know. | Tagged , | 20 Comments

Eggless Red Velvet Cupcakes

Red colour is magical. It is the colour of fire and blood. Associated with energy, passion, power and of course love. And what better way of appreciating the magical power of red other than in cupcakes. Red velvet cupcakes are simply perfect for all occasions.

“Show them you care,
make their day,
bake them a batch of red velvet cupcakes, today.”

(Told you they are magical, they bring out the poet in me. :) )

Love has a new name – Eggless Red Velvet Cupcakes

These red velvet cup cakes are light, fluffy, have a subtle chocolate flavor and totally eggless. The red colour of these eggless red velvet cupcakes comes from the red food colour. Try to use the best quality red food colour you can find. I got over-board and pour lots and lots of gel food colour, later regretted for using such a large amount. Anyways, it’s a pretty red and they look awesome!

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Posted in Cupcakes, Food for kids, Kids pleaser, milk, Quick recipe, Ramadan Special, Tea snacks | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Lemon Honey Sesame Chicken Wings

I’ve made this recipe on a request ( kindly note that we do listen to all your requests and queries  We try our level best to fit them in our schedule asap. With a hope that you people won’t mind if it takes us longer than usual to post your request. )They turned out so good that I have a feeling it’ll be included in my weekly cooking plans. Ooooh yeah! They were juicy, tender and oh-so-flavorsome.

There are many different types of chicken wings recipes out there. This one is the least complicated, one bowl recipe and does not require any deep-frying. In fact these are totally oil-free. You don’t even have to use a tsp of oil in these juicy, tender and oh-so-citrusy chicken wings.

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Posted in Chicken, Food for kids, Kids pleaser, Quick recipe, Ramadan Special, Tea snacks | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

7-days Free E-course on How to bake a Perfect Cake is here

Wohoooo! 😀

I am so excited to announce that my first free e-course on how to bake a perfect cake is finally here. I have tried my level best to keep it simple and include all the necessary information that one requires when cake baking.

All you have to do is enter your NAME and E-mail Address and then confirm your subscription by clicking on the link that you instantaneously receive afterwards. You will receive one e-mail per day for 6 consecutive days.

Goto The Chef In Me, see that peach coloured course widget on the top right corner? Enter your name and e-mail there, confirm and that’s it.

Hope you like it.
Hope you make most out it. Your feedback, comments and queries are always welcome.

Do share with me how your first cake turned out.

Have fun people,
happy baking :)

Posted in Cakes, News | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Crispy Fried Potato Puffs recipe

Sick and tired of those same tasting samosay. Even tried substituting potato filling for chicken but still, your taste buds crave for something crispy, creamy yet light on  the budget. Well, we have something of your interest.

These crispy fried potato puffs will definitely be a breathe of fresh air for you. These are one of those snacks, after you take your first bite, you hear “no-one-can-have-just-one *trum pum” song in the background. And the music keeps playing while you eat. You and the music both stop when there are no more crispy fried potato puffs left in the plate, seriously! They are addictive.

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Posted in eggs, Food for kids, Kids pleaser, Quick recipe, Ramadan Special, Tea snacks, Veges | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Oil-free Scrambled Egg In Microwave

Monotony bores us. We human beings like, as well as need change. It makes otherwise dull and dry life interesting. Just like different spices in our food can either make or break a dish. On the same note, your life should be loaded with all kinds of different experiences and your food should be packed with flavors. Try something new every now and then. It will be a breathe of fresh air, and that’s what make life interesting.

“Variety’s the very spice of life, that gives it all its flavor“.
By William Cowper

It seems everything and everybody is on the go these days. People are using smat phones, smart cars and now even smart food. Food that is not only quickly prepared but equally quick and simple to make. That is why restaurant business is on its boom these days. People can’t afford to spend hours and hours long into the kitchen when they can get their favorite food delivered right at their door-step. If you are a chicken pasta alfredo or white sauce fan than you will definitely love this oil-free scrambled egg recipe. A bite into this dreamy, creamy, fluffy scrambled egg in a microwave takes you to an epic journey of creamy pleasures. Trust me this egg recipe tastes more like creamy white sauce than an egg. I am a die hard fan of white sauce so, I simply loved it.

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Posted in cream, eggs, milk, Quick recipe | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

Marshmallow Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Glaze

You can never go wrong with chocolate and marshmallows. They are definitely a match made in heaven. Either you’re making hot chocolate or coating marshmallows with melted chocolate, these two are meant for each other. They complement each other beautifully, that’s why I said, “you can never go wrong with chocolate and marshmallows”.

Have a Slice

This cake is perfect for all those gloomy, dark nights or chilly winters. They two make an excellent combination and a wonderful blend. The combo is deadly. Mind-blowing to be least. Ah, they look so good together. So good!

Chocolate & Marshmallows

I’m a huge fan of marshmallows and I have yet to meet someone who doesn’t like chocolates. Chocolate and marshmallows go so well together. When the deep, dark and bold flavors of the chocolate meet the light, sticky, fluffy and cushiony-soft marshmallows – Kaboom! And if some silky smooth chocolate glaze has been drizzled on top  – the result is an ooey-gooey, moist, sticky cake. A real treat for choco-mallow-holics. Continue reading

Posted in Butter, Cakes, desserts, eggs, Food for kids, Tea snacks | Tagged , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Daal Maash Dahi Bhallay Recipe From Scratch

The holy month of Ramadan is here. The month of barkatain (blessings) and rehmatain. Hazrat Jibraeel (PBUH) brought the very first revelation to the Final Messenger of Allah subhana Wa Taala – Prophet Mohammad PBUH in this month. Allah says in Chapter 2, Verse 183 of the Quran:

“Ramadan is the (month) in which the Quran was sent down, as a guide to mankind and a clear guidance and judgment (so that mankind will distinguish from right and wrong).”

May Allah subhan na wataala wash away all of our sins, grant us taqwa,  increase our imaan, help us with mighty help, give us good in this world and hereafter and save our family, friends, neighbours, and other fellow Muslims from the torment of the fire, ameen! Ramadan Mubarak everyone. Hope you make most out of it. Ameen! And now to the recipe.

Dahi bhallay are comprized of two main ingredients, dahi as in yogurt and bhallay, duh! :p But now-a-days if you happen to live in Lahore or Karachi (I don’t know if it is also in Islamabad or not) you MUST have visisted a place called “Chatkhara”. They have some amazing dishes in their menu section and one of it is their “Dahi bhallay”. Funny thing is their dahi bhallay aren’t really dahi bhallay but dahi phulkian, because they are missing the main ingredient – Bhallay. Instead they use round phulkian. But, no doubt their dahi bhallay which are basically dahi phulkian taste great. Have I confused you?

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Posted in Asian (desi) cooking, Pulses, Ramadan Special, Tea snacks | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Cuppa Cuppa Cake with fresh fruits

Last couple of months have been crazy busy. I’ve been trying to juggle kids, home and work together. Of course work gets affected the most. Still I have no regrets. Of course previously, I used to get my hands dirty in flour and butter with two kids to worry about. Mostly they were screaming and jumping around me when I’m cooking. And the new born doesn’t make things easy for me (please note I am not complaining or blaming anyone, just letting you guys take a sneak peak into my amazing world). I know he needs me the most. Yes, we have a new comer in our family, my little, cute and bubbly boy Ibraheem. He’s now almost 3 months old now. But he’s been a real sweetheart. He lets his mommy get some rest, do her work, get her feet up (again) and relax.

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Posted in Cakes, cream, desserts, Fruits | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

How To Make Self-Raising Flour At Home

Happiness comes in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes it comes from your not-so-perfectly-baked cake or the first batch of chocolate ganache you just made, the very first time. It’s true that challenges and brand-spanking new experiences create happy memories. It’s not just the final product but the whole process of making it that makes you feel special – makes you feel alive.

She felt like she was the happiest kid alive and wanted to cook something different for today. Something special and classy, of course. Why? Because it was her birthday.

Her eyes widened with excitement as she grabbed her favorite cook book from the shelf and sat on the chair lying next to her. She opened the book, placed it in her lap and started to read. Yes, everything seemed right, everything seemed perfect.

Then she was flipping pages, one after the other. Glancing at the images on every page, and flipped, onto the next page. “Finally!” she exclaims, with a big ear to ear smile on her face. After taking a quick look at the ingredients list, she closes the book and off she goes into the kitchen to make herself a deep, dark chocolate cake. Looking at the ingredients list she started to frown at something, “Now what in earth is self-raising flour and where am I going to get it from?”, she thinks to herself.

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Posted in Cakes, Cupcakes, Substitutes, Things you don't know., What's inside a cake | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments