Crossing a century!

The blog has crossed a 100 and I couldn’t be more thrilled about the timing of this! It has been an eventful week and I know that the best is yet to come. Details soon ­čÖé

Since I’m going to be away for a couple of days during the weekend, I didn’t want the blog to be neglected so I turned to the second person I know who always has a solution for any query related to food, the first one being my dad. Ruchira of Cookaroo has written about this uber-delish baked yogurt and I love the way she’s picked the exact ingredients – baked, yogurt and grapes – there couldn’t have been a better combo and those who know me well by now would know that black grapes and yogurt is my favourite quick-fix dessert, so this baked yogurt recipe is a winner on all counts. Over to Ruchira…

Trio of colours ┬ęCookaroo

Ever since Renuka asked me to do this guest post – there’s been just two things on my mind. One, egg or no egg? For, as most of you know, our friend here is allergic to eggs.

But as a baker, I find it rather hard to bake without eggs. I don’t get the right kind of texture. I think it’s too soda-ey.( I don’t know how she does it!) On the other hand, I hate it if things are too eggy – I’d never ever make them again. So finding the balance has always been very important for me.

The other thing has been about what I should say about her. What should I say? Where should I start? On my gmail, I ran a search with her name. Hundreds, no thousands of conversations that us fellow Capricorns have had over the last 6 years popped up. I didn’t know which one talk to about. The mind boggled.

So I decided to talk about my friend as she is Now. Brave, beautiful, generous and spirited. In the last one year, this tiny friend of mine has gone from strength to strength. She’s been a rock solid sister, an amazing daughter and a kick-ass foodie. She’s found true love and has worked hard to get where she is. A package deal, that I’ve always always treasured. And the best part is that I’ve seen her grow into all this.

In my head, she’s always just a quick ping away. Just a quiet sms away and although we don’t talk as much as we used, I don’t think a single thing has changed between us.

Therefore, I’ve chosen a recipe that she can definitely make and enjoy. (The no-egg won!) I do remember her love for yogurt. And for grapes, and this is the perfect combination of the two.

I don’t remember where I’d seen this recipe. Perhaps on the Purple Foodies blog, or was it off a Sanjeev Kapoor TV show? I just remembered jotting it down on a piece of paper and slipping it into one of my recipe books. It was nearly accidental that I found this bit last week… and since then it’s been on my to-do list.

Four ingredients can create magic. Yes they can. The extras I’ve done are only because I had time in my hand. Otherwise eaten plain too this is the most wonderful dessert that will definitely get you praises.

The awesome thing about this yogurt is that it can take on many flavours before baking it. You could try a cinnamon yogurt, a variation with saffron, cardamom, ginger, honey, maple – the list is endless. As is the list of toppings – berries, nuts, stewed fruit, fresh fruit. I chose vanilla only because I’m partial to the plain mild yet vibrant flavour of the bean. I feel that the yogurt is an excellent home to the vanilla of your choice. Plus the black seeds make a beautiful contrast to the ivory of the yogurt.

This yogurt is almost like mishti doi, the thick creamy texture slides off the tongue, almost as soon as it touches it. The texture is also reminiscent of a cheesecake, and if you make a deadly topping, you definitely have a version of the poor man’s cheesecake. One word of caution though – do not overbake, you’ll land up with scrambled yogurt, which is really very very horrid.


Baked vanilla yogurt with roasted grapes

Serves 4 generous portions, six if you stretch it

IngredientsFor the vanilla yogurt
500 ml fresh yogurt
150 ml condensed milk
50 ml fresh cream
1 vanilla pod

For the roasted grapes250 gms grapes
2 tablespoons jam (single fruit jam works best)
50 ml juice (I used mixed fruit)
1/2 Vanilla pod

Additional toppings
Fresh Mango /Chiku/ Strawberry
Pistachios
Walnuts

Method

For the yogurt
1. Preheat oven to 120 degree centigrade

2. Whisk together the yogurt and condensed milk, add cream to it. Stir well

3. Split the vanilla pod in half, scrape the innards and put it into the yogurt mix. (Put the pods into your box of icing sugar).

4. Pour into individual ramekins. If not a big oven-proof dish will work too. Put this in a roasting tin and pour water till it reaches at least a quarter of the dish – basically Bain Marieing it. Bake for 15- 18 minutes.

Stretching it to six ┬ęCookaroo

5. Turn off the oven and let it cool. The yogurt will set and firm up during this time.

6. Chill the yogurt for atleast a couple of hours before serving. If stored covered, the baked yogurt will stay good for 5 days

For the roasted grapes
1. Preheat oven to 220 degree centigrade. Wash the grapes and removed from stem.

2. In an oven-proof dish mix the juice and the jam together. Scrap the vanilla seeds from the pod and add to this mixture.

3. Add the grapes to this mix and stir it around to make sure its well-covered. Bake for 70 minutes of until you can see the grapes burst with flavours and the juice mix slightly thickened.

4. Serve hot or cold. Stays in the refrigerator for upto 2 weeks.

Poor man’s cheesecake ┬ęCookaroo

Assembly
Spoon the grapes over the yogurt and top with pistachios. Pair it with fresh fruits and granola for a great sweet fix.

Saving the best for last ┬ęCookaroo

Note: When I make the grapes I normally make about 500 grams and use them in my cereal and sometimes just like a sweet spread. The yogurt is excellent for breakfast as well.

0 thoughts on “Of memories, crossing 100 and a guest post

  1. that baked vanilla custard is so similar to our Bhapa Doi!! and teaming it up with sour berries is a marvelous idea. I recently made something similar and teamed it up with orange marmalade and muesli. Went down with the rest of the family like a dream.

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