Brownie ‘n’ Ice Cream

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I have been feeling rather blue lately. Lazy too. And I don’t blame it entirely on the weather. The last month has kept me terribly overworked with little time to relax, forget about indulging in my passions and interests. Obviously, I have been cooking less too! And when I do, it is all about rustling up some quick fix comfort food. Foods that would make me feel good. Now among the foods that cheer me up instantly, the top two places are certainly reserved for chocolates and ice creams. And when I want some extra cheer, I combine the two. Like I did in this super yum Chocolate-Walnut Brownie with Vanilla Ice Cream! A warm, gooey chocolate brownie with a scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream on the side and topped with hot chocolate sauce and loads of chopped nuts… Ah! Who wouldn’t get all happy and cheerful with that thing?! My mood is brightened for now, now I must brighten up yours! Go ahead, make this for dessert tonight. Here’s the recipe:

INGREDIENTS:

4 pieces chocolate-walnut brownie
4 scoops Vanilla ice cream (or Vanilla flavored whipped cream)
8 tablespoons chocolate sauce
4 tablespoons chopped walnuts/hazelnuts

RECIPE:

Warm the brownie pieces in a microwave for a minute. Transfer to a serving dish and put a scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream or whipped cream on the side. Top with hot chocolate sauce and chopped nuts. Gobble up before the ice cream melts! 😉

Eat, drink and be merry! 🙂

NOTE: To make Hot Chocolate Sauce at home, take a bar of semisweet dark chocolate (250 grams), butter (50 grams) and 2 tablespoons sugar in a bowl and melt over a double boiler. When the chocolate starts melting, add half cup cream and 2 tablespoons of milk and stir well. Warm the sauce well over the double boiler or microwave for 30 seconds before using.

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Gujiya (Holi Special)

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The best thing about Holi are the mouth-watering sweets that come with it. Besides of course, the riot of colors this popular Indian festival brings. Gujiya is one sweet that everyone loves. It had been almost a tradition in my house that batches after batches of Gujiyas came out of the frying pan and were gobbled up even before they could cool properly. The same happens now, too. As I fry crisp, sweet khoya filled Gujiyas, and as the aroma wafts through the house, the first one to land at my kitchen door is my dog, drooling and looking at me with pleading eyes until he has got one. Then Hubby. Who wants to “taste” how the Holi special sweet is turning out. And then me, of course, with my particular weakness for Gujiya! 🙂 Well, my Gujiyas are ready to be relished tomorrow (and for many days to come). You can make them too and make your Holi super sweet! Here’s the recipe:

INGREDIENTS:

FOR THE CRUST

2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup ghee
500 ml cold water
A pinch salt
Refined oil (to deep fry)

FOR THE STUFFING

1-1/2 cups khoya (grated)
1/4 cup semolina
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 tablespoons ghee
1 teaspoon green cardamom powder
1/2 bowl mixed nuts (almonds – blanched and slivered, raisins, chironji, pistachio – blanched and slivered)
10-12 saffron strands (soaked in 2 tablespoons warm milk)

RECIPE:

Mix all ingredients for the crust except water. Add water slowly as per requirement and knead into a stiff dough. Cover with a damp cloth and set to rest for 20 mins.

Heat 2 tablespoons ghee in a pan and roast semolina till light golden. Now add the grated khoya and mix well. Stir fry till the khoya is well roasted (about 15 mins) and you get a rich aroma. Add the cardamom powder, nuts and saffron strands soaked in milk and mix well. Finally, add the sugar and stir till the sugar mixes well with the khoya and the stuffing acquires a near dry consistency. Remove from heat and let cool.

Make small balls of the dough and roll each out into circles of 2-3 inch diameter. Place a spoonful of the khoya stuffing in the centre of the circle and fold the circle into halves. Brush the edges with water and seal them well. Twist the edges gently to shape into Gujiyas or simply mark them with a fork.

Heat oil in a pan and deep fry the Gujiyas in batches of 3-4 on medium heat till they are crisp and golden. Drain on a paper towel and allow the Gujiyas to cool. Store in an air-tight container and enjoy on Holi, or whenever you want!

Eat, drink and be merry! 🙂