W for White Chocolate Mousse

I’m not a fan of white chocolate. I find it extremely sweet and considering it’s not exactly chocolate per se, I think I can be forgiven. White chocolate is not even made using cocoa powder. Rather they use a blend of cocoa butter, milk solids, sugar etc.

Anyway, even though I’m not a fan, I did want to try it out in a dessert. I’m not averse to baking with it. Just eating it. So I thought the easiest form of dessert to try out was a mousse. It’s light and airy and once again a single serve dessert. You don’t have to worry about finishing it or make large quantities of it. Of course you can if you want to.

Except for my sister, no one in my house is a HUGE dessert fan. We’ll eat our desserts in moderation. So baking a gigantic cake or an extra-large sized tub of goodies are a no no. Hence, the White Chocolate Mousse. Thankfully it turned out well. A tad oversweet for my taste but you learn as you try new things. The texture though was perfect and that’s what counts. This was my first time making a mousse and I was a little nervous. Desserts like these can very easily be goofed up. And as usual, I never keep backups.

I crossed my fingers and hoped it would turn out well. It did.

©NJ

NaPoWriMo Day 26: The Moment

He stood waiting

Breathless

Excited

Happy

This was happening

The girl of his dreams

Will come walking

Walking down that aisle

As he stood waiting

©NJ

In response to the prompt for day 15.

Image courtesy:- Pixabay.

V for Vanilla Ice Cream

Vanilla Ice Cream with Gajar ka Halwa

Whoever first invented no churn ice creams was a godsend. Without him/her/them, making ice cream wouldn’t have been so easy.

A couple of weeks ago, my parents came down for a visit and stayed for a week. Apart from feeding them like mad, we also ensured that there was something sweet to eat after every meal. Nothing too big or fancy. Just single serve bite sized treats. Two days before they were leaving, I decided to make some ice cream and my sister decided to make an Indian sweet dish called Gajar ka Halwa. I’ve never tried that combination before but I have heard that it’s supposed to be really good. We, of course, had the option of eating them separately!

It’s peak summer in India right now. Temperatures are 40degreesC and above (and climbing). So we thought ‘what better dessert than ice cream on a hot summer day?’

Ice cream is one of my weaknesses. That’s one dessert I really love. I don’t know if this was a true story or not, but when I was a kid, whenever we (my family) had ice cream I would do two things.

One is, I would chew the ice cream. Now, I’m sure you’re thinking that there’s nothing wrong in that. Ice cream could have chunks of fruits or nuts or even chocolate chips etc. but no, my dear readers, the ice creams we ate had none of those. And yet, I would chew it. Don’t ask me why or how or any other similar questions. I just did.

Second thing that I would do is to finish off my scoop as soon as possible and then go around asking my family members for more. The funny thing was that I wanted the extra from their plates. I didn’t want my mum or my dad putting another scoop for me. Nope. I wanted it from their plates. I did this quite a few times so from then on they would just add extra on their plates knowing I’d be doing the ‘rounds’.

Of course, now I’m glad I make my own ice cream!

©NJ

NaPoWriMo Day 25: Mr. EggHead

Hercule Poirot with an egg shaped head

is kind and friendly to the dead

When he’s off solving the ‘whodunit’

there is no escape for the culprit.

©NJ

In response to the prompt for day 14.

Image courtesy:- Pixabay.

U for Upside Down Cake

Fresh Figs, Walnut and Rosemary Upside Down Cake

I’ve always found Upside Down cakes tricky. Not the baking part but the ‘taking out of tin’ part. If a regular cake gets stuck or breaks a bit here and there, you can fix it and still make it look pretty. How in the world are you supposed to do that with an Upside Down cake?!

The first time I had an Upside Down cake was this year. For my birthday. It’s the post for the letter P. It turned out perfect, did not stick to the tin and came out clean and neat out of it. After seeing that, I had hope for when I baked one too.

I recently found this amazing recipe online and I have become a huge fan of it. I’ve never used Fresh Figs or Rosemary in baking and I was dying to do so. The taste of fresh figs is something out of this world. They taste far better than the dried ones.

Anyway, this recipe I followed to the T. Usually I lessen the sugar or add some extra chocolate or walnuts etc. Nothing too out of the way but just the stuff that I know won’t alter the taste too much.

Boy oh boy, did the cake turn out perfectly. I was petrified till the moment I took the cake out of the tin. But it slid right out and did not stick at all. The figs moved a bit from their original positions but who cares. I successfully baked an Upside Down cake.

Oh and did I tell you we were in cake heaven as we ate it? It tasted D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S.

©NJ

P.S. You can check out more of her recipes at Sweetly Serendipity.

NaPoWriMo Day 24: Cloudy Shapes

Taken on a fine morning outside my bedroom window.

Watch intently as the

cottonballs rush to meet

and greet each other

amongst the vast aqua blue sky

creating contours of a magical kind

that helps us visualize an elephant

or in my case, a large alien ship

and rekindle the joy

of finding shapes in the sky.

©NJ

In response to the prompt for Day 9.

T for Tiramisu

I’m not a coffee person. And Tiramisu has coffee.

When I was in college, I was completely averse to coffee. No coffee drink. No coffee flavoured toffee. No coffee flavoured dessert. Absolutely nothing that had coffee in it. Strangely enough, I loved the aroma (still do) of coffee. Even stranger was the fact that I come from a coffee town. My native is in the South of India so people always assumed that I’d like coffee. Actually strike that. They assumed I’d love coffee. Even the city that I grew up in is a huge coffee fan. But me? Nah. I’m a tea person.

All my friends would swoon over Tiramisu and tell me that I had to try it. I would not my head and hmmm and hawww about it but I never ventured there. Years later, at a friend’s birthday lunch celebration we ordered a slice of Tiramisu and that was my first tryst with it. To say that I love it would probably be an understatement. That’s when I figured out that I’m not averse to the flavour as such but as to the concentration of coffee. If it’s too coffee-ish then I can’t take that. But a lightly coffee flavoured treat is not a problem anymore. Heck, I even drink coffee! Again, not the strong versions but the lighter ones. That too, once in a blue moon. Actually the blue moon might occur more frequently but you get the picture.

©NJ

Image courtesy:- Pixabay.

NaPoWriMo Day 23: Stop Wishing

You wish you were brave

You wish you were confident

You wish you were strong

You wish you were bold

You wish you were courageous

You wish you were tough

You wish you were happy

You wish you were cheerful

You wish, you wish

you keep wishing

But all these wishes

will be a distant dream

If you do not wake up

and work towards it.

©NJ

Image courtesy:- Pixabay.

In response to the prompt for Day 8.

NaPoWriMo Day 22: Illuminated Soul

Walking across leaf strewn lanes

the wind blows a soft gentle breeze

humming tunes as it clashed

with tree filled leaves.

Along the journey a leaflet is carried

on the shoulders of the wind

and planted in my path

Curious, I catch it and sit on a park bench

And read:-

When I was born, all hope was gone

Even before I rose, I was ignored

Love there was not for my little soul

And so I stayed for long in that mode.

 

Then one day, light dawned upon me

The light that grew within me

Surrounded me whole and covered me

Like iron doors

Illuminated in my own light, I realised

The hope and love I seek is inside

Inside of my own beating heart.”

©NJ

In response to the prompt for Day 7.

Image courtesy:- Pixabay.

S for Sugar Cookies

I’ve always wanted to bake sugar cookies and even more so to decorate them. It is just so much fun! You don’t have to follow any rules when it comes to decorating. Make your own designs and choose your own colours etc. I’ve always wondered why they were called Sugar Cookies. But after we made it and judging by the amount of sugar that was used for the cookies and the icing, I think I do. It may not be the actually reason as to why they are called so but I’m going to go with this one.

Recently a friend of mine shipped her stock of baking ingredients to me since she was moving to another city and would not be baking there. My sister and I were in awe with the amount of icing sugar that was sent. But, three months down, and we finished it all off. Majority of it being used for the cookies.

Here, it’s hard to courier baked goodies. You need to find a really good courier service that will do so. I finally found one nearby who couriers them  as long they do not have any cream or anything that will melt off in the package. I took that as a blessing and thought that the least I could do for my friends is send them cookies. Just sending pictures of the goodies I baked weren’t enough. LOL.

I had once baked Chocolate Cupcakes for my friends and given them when we all met up. One of my friend’s son loved them. Ever since, he would request that I bake cupcakes for him. Unfortunately, when you’re living in another city, it’s not that easy. So when I learned that I could send cookies, I did not even hesitate. I made an entire batch (it made around 75 cookies) and shipped them off to him as a surprise for his birthday.

He’s still enjoying them.

©NJ