Sunday, 18 May 2014

Sunday Morning Cinnamon Buns *No eggs required*

What do you feel is the best time to bake? Well honestly all times are the best time to bake , but morning baking is my FAV
You know the whole staying up late night , searching the multitudes of recipes on the internet to decide what tasty treat should you whip up , drooling, finding something you Absolutely Have To make and then falling into deep slumber. Well, I waste no time mulling over such things.
Wake  up, find recipe, cuppa tea in one hand and a whisk in another. Chop chop chop. 

So yesterday I found this amazing blog called Averie Cooks . Since yeast is my current obsession I head straight to her yeasted breads section and guess what I found ! Cinnamon buns * well that wasn't a tough guess considering that's exactly what the title says. Maybe I should work on building up the mystery . But chopchopchop*
Anywhoo she had an overnight cinnamon bun recipe and an instant 1 hour one. Guess which one impatient Soph picked *Yay . I kinda got the mystery part right*

Why This Recipe Stole My Heart ( just by reading , I hadn't baked it yet)
  • 1 hour stuff. No long waiting
  • Yeast. 
  • No eggs. Although I don't have issues with eggs, I know a bunch of people who do . So it's always nicer to include them in food tasting
  • Cinnamon ! I <3 cinnamon. I can sprinkle that goodness on all foods ever 
  • CinnamonBun!  from Adventure Time -My favourtie cartoon.Yes I'm an Adult . Yes I watch Adventure time , and Futurama. But you must understand how deep these cartoons are. its about life and so many things that come with it . All the hardships, the lessons, the love. Something a person any age can relate to.

That being said I faced certain difficulties regarding the dough . It was quiet sticky and just couldn't hold it together. I was afraid that adding too much flour would make it very chewy , so just worked my way around the dough .With a few changes and faith in the God of Baked Goods, everything worked out great!Oh itssooooooyummy , you're gonna want seconds and thirds and fourths.
My search for cinnalove does not end here, but it's a great place to start , and satiate instant cravings.
Dough Ingredients 

Spread the dough, spread some butter

Srpinkle some sugars

Rolled and cut

Lovely and baked

I did a Google search on cinnamon buns and found some fun paraphernalia( I don't know why I'm doing this , but it's interesting!)
Cinnamon Bun Latte (yummy yummy)
Cinnamon Roll cake flavour (I own it. It smells like heaven dipped in maple syrup)

Here's the Original Recipe. I omitted the cream cheese Icing cuz well, don't wanna OD on sugar just yet. But you totally can!

Kay now Bakey time

Cinnamon Buns *egg free*



3 cup flour
1 cup buttermilk(I didnt have buttermilk so I took 1/2 cup yogurt, 1/3rd cup milk and remaining water)
1 tsp dry active yeast
2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla essence(this is optional but  always a great choice)


50 gm softened Butter
1/3 cup Brown Sugar
1/4 cup White sugar
1 stick cinnamon ( variable.depends on how much cinna does your palette craves)


  • Mix yeast & 1 tbsp sugar in 2 tbsp warm( 30-40  C) water . Let it stand for 15 minutes.
  • Take all the dough ingredients along with yeast and mix. Now knead a lil ,cover and let it rise for 1 hour.(till doubles in size)
  • Sprinkle a cling wrap sheet with powdered sugar. 
  • Spread the dough on the sheet to make a rectangle of around 1 cm thickness.
  • Spread the butter on the dough. leave a 1/4 inch margin on the sides
  • Blitz together the sugars and cinnamon. Sprinkle evenly on top of the butter. Reserve 2 tbsp.
  • Roll the dough . Cut in 1 inch thick slices .Place in a cake-pan.
  • Sprinkle the top with remaining sugar cinnamon mix 
  • Cover and let it rise for 20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile preheat oven to 180C
  • Bake for 30 -35 minutes , untill a fork inserted comes out clean
Let it stand for 10 minutes after. There are buttery juices at the bottom that your buns need to soak up.
Now cut and devour.

Friday, 16 May 2014

Japanese Hokkaido Milk Bread

Have you ever baked a loaf of bread?
A perfect warm fluffy thing that brings joy in the darkest corners of your heart?

There was a time I used to be afraid of baking breads. I dunno why but I wouldn't touch yeasted recipes with a 10 foot pole. And then came a day when I baked my first loaf of fresh white bread. IT WAS THE MOST BEAUTIFUL THING EVER.
I'd read in books how satisfying and rewarding a loaf of bread fresh from the oven is . In this Sophie Kinsella book actually. It was perfectly true. And although I still don't always have successful breads, this recipe is always there to counter the fails.

My grandparents live in Hyderabad. Every-time I visit them , there is always a tin of condensed milk and a loaf of milk bread from the local bakery waiting for me. And that loaf of milk bread is is practically cake with an identity crisis because its so ,just so delicious. In a nostalgic attempt to recreate the sweet cloud of love I found this Japanese method of bread making . They use a milk water flour roux in the bread to give it a softer texture called Tanzhong. You can read more about it here, although that's not the recipe I used. 
I used this recipe from Christine's Kitchen. She has a massive Tanzhong bread collection , some of which I mean to try very soon. 

This is a rich recipe with butter, eggs and milk.Almost brioche like.It even calls for milk powder , but sadly I didn't have any lying around. I guess next time , it can only improve on its wonderful taste. I went ahead and added some raisins to it. Like all bread recipes it can be used plain or filled with savoury or sweet things. Juts adjust the sugar and salt accordingly

Hokkaido Milk Bread


  1. 1/3 cup flour
  2. 1/2 cup milk
  3. 1/2cup water
Method :
Mix all ingredients. Put on flame and keep stirring till mixture thickens and reaches 65 C or pulls away clean from the pan. 
Cool to achieve room temperature




  • 2 1/2 cup flour
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp milk powder( I didn't have any , so I skipped it)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tsp instant yeast
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 volume of tanzhong


  • Mix 1 tbsp sugar in 3 tbsp of water and stir in yeast . Leave it undisturbed for about 10-15 minutes
  • Pour all your ingredients in a bowl
  • Using hands or dough maker, make a dough! I
Note: Its will be a very sticky dough , but that's what makes it awesome . So if you're tempted to add more flour , DONT
  • Now knead and knead and knead till it reaches a smooth-er feel . It'll take about 10 minutes by hand
  • Place in a greased bowl , cover with cling-wrap or wet towel. 
  • Ferment for about 40 minutes or till it doubles in size. I like to keep my dough out on the window sill in sunshine to get the right temperature.
  • Divide dough in 3 parts
  • Flatten out each part and roll each one up
  • Place all three in a bread tin. Ferment for another 30 minutes.
  • Brush with an egg wash 
  • Bake in preheated oven at 190 C for about 40-45 minutes
  • Once removed from the oven WAIT for it to reach room temperature before slicing. I know it's tempting but it will fall apart otherwise. 
Go take a power nap . Wake up , slice bread.
Slather with love, joy, butter or nutella and gobble gobble gobble :D

Saturday, 26 April 2014

Farewell Orange Creamcicle Cupcakes

The title is kinda confusing I guess. I'm not bidding farewell to orange creamcicle cupcakes. I'm using these cupcakes to bid farewell to my sister. That's kinda depressing cuz shes practically the sunshine in my life . So that makes the orange cupcakes kinda symbolical (Orange=sun . Gettit? Non?)

Anywhoo , I've never really had orange creamcicle(or have had but posses no memory of it) but we discovered this creamy orange drink in Ruby Tuesdays once and it was honestly Dream in a Tall glass. Since then we've had the same orange drink (under iota of varying names) all over town . It's so nice and tangy yet creamy and comforting that It deserves a cupcake!

Now i know cupcakes are an Absolute rage on the internet. My favorite cupcake place has to be the CupCake Project. Her creativity in terms of flavour combinations is magnificent. Really inspires me to get my innovation garb on. Post hours of creamcicle recipe research later all I could find was OJ, Jello and Cake mix combos (cake mix is a no-no-nonono-nono-no)
I said to myself- screw that! I am a Prodigious enough baker to make my own recipe (of course I tooka lot of advice form various sources. But hey, not all secrets are told to the world)
I just realize I did share that secret to the world through a public blog . Sometimes I wonder if all that accidentally hitting head on random surfaces actually damages brain tissue. OoohSQUIRREL!

Result: I made a recipe < insert I'm king of the world dance moves>

Lately my kitchen has been filling up with amazeballs bakery utensils. I had my @)th birthday( and I demanded baking products form everybody) ,accidentally tripped into a lot of kitchen stores(I assure you there was nothing accidental about that), et al.
Thus collecting a bunch of loaf tins(breadmaking  I'm coming soon) and  A TWELVE CUPCAKE CUPCAKE TIN! If you hit your head on random surfaces too : I used the cupcake tin for today's cupcakes.

Sippin some juice . Got thirsty
I just realized how much rambling has been done above. Without further ado *teleporting to recipe arena*

Orange Creamcicle Cupcakes

Makes 18-20 cupcakes depending on your generosity( I was a little too generous and made only 17)
Preheat oven to 180 C
Line the love of your life with pretty cupcake liners


2 cups flour ( remove 2 tbsp from that)
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup( 150 gm) butter
3 eggs
1/2 (1/4 +1/4)cup orange juice( I used packaged but i can bet fresh is better)
1/4th cup yogurt
1 tsp vanilla essence
1/2 tsp baking soda
5(3+2) tbsp orange Tang 
Lets talk about Tang: For those of you who don't know, tang is an orange flavour drink mix.I've used it heavily in this recipe cuz i was too lazy to go buy real oranges and use their zest and i was out of orange oil and the shops nearby didn't have orange essence. HENCE tang.


  • Beat the bejeesus out of butter and sugar
  • Beat in one egg at a time 
  • Add vanilla
  • Pour in 1/4 cup of Orange juice  and the yogurt . B-b-beat
  • Sift in Flour , baking soda and 3 tablespoon tang. fold it in.
  • Add in the remaining OJ. Mix it Lightly
  • Fill up da cuppycake tray
  • Bake for about 20-25 minutes until the top springs back on touch( I'm trying to look for alternates to the toothpick test . Apparently it compromises with the integrity of the cupcakes)

Sprinkle the reaming tang on the fresh hot cakelets . Ice . or eat

Tangy Yogurt Orange Icing

I just ball parked this entire thing but it turned out to be pretty damn awesome . I'm sure marshmallow frosting , buttercream or creamcheese frosting would rock creamcicle cupcakes' world too

DISCLAIMER: Only 6 cupcakes had to be iced so this ices only 6. Double treble or quadruple it to suit your needs. Also it's slightly runny. Doesn't reach stiff peaks

Thou Shalt Need

2 Tbsp Butter
4 Tbsp  Hung curd/ Greek Yogurt
1/2 cup Sugar
3 tsp Tang

What to Do

  • Put it all in a bowl and whip it up
  • Put a teaspoon each on top of a cupcake and swirl it away 

Now go give them tastebuds some citrus lovin

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Strawberry Cakes Forever- Caramel Cake with Strawberry and Whipped Cream Frosting

Let me take you down
'Cause I'm going to Strawberry Fields
Nothing is real
And nothing to get hung about
Strawberry Fields forever

It was my Dad's birthday.
This caramel cake is my aunts old recipe. I had it once and was an instant fan .The lingering aftertaste of caramel is so beautiful and unexpected that I HAD to make it . Its a great cake in itself but a birthday cake deserves something more, so STRAWBERRIES! And that song played in my mind the entire time I was baking * yes my mind works in weird ways , hold back your judgement*

The Original Text
The recipe involves making a caramel and believe me when I say this , Caramel can be a nightmare! I have spent months and years trying to deal with sugar decorations and caramel and there's just too much precision involved for a broke teenager without a candy thermometer*This was 2 months ago . I now have a candy thermometer! wheee joy dance time  :D*. I could make a caramel sauce with butter cream and deliciousness , but never melt sugar in itself . That was until I saw my aunt do it with such ease and precision . Gave me hope in life and Ta-Daa . I can DO it ! and so can you *pom pom dance*

So the caramel is poured into the batter after cooling ( do cool it unless you want sweet butter soup . On second thoughts sweet butter soup does sound quite delicious.Mouth watering-drooool )

I mascerated some strawberries, cooked it with sugar and put it atop whipped cream icing.
The Strawberries complemented the caramel flavor amazingly! IT was a match made in culinary utopia. ATTENTION All strawberry and chocolate enthusiasts out there! This is the future of romantic desserts or otherwise. I can already picture hotels in 2024 offering Champagne and caramel strawberry packages *wink*.
My only problem was the whipped cream . Why? Here's the thing . I'm a firm believer in pure unprocessed products , so non dairy whipping cream is Just Not My Thing. Sadly the cream that we do get is only 20 % butterfat that is not right for whipping at all. Its doesn't go beyond soft peaks and weeps out a lot of water * boohoo* Then Sophia the explorer got to doing what she does best! exploring the internet- and found the magic ingredient! Drumroll Please -GELATIN! Not oodles and poodles enough to make mousse, But just a teaspoon dissolved in water to stabilize. And it oh so worked magic .

 Everyone at the Party RAVED abut this one . My poor Black-forest cake got little love :( . That's still a work in progress

Now lets get to the strawberry fields

Beat the butter

Pour some sugar


MMM caramel

Just Siftin

Caramel Cake

Preheat oven to 180 C
Grease and line a 9" cake dish( this makes a big cake. if you don't have a 9 inch use Two 8's)


1 1/4 cup flour
1 cup sugar( divide in half)
1 cup( 200gm) butter
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup water(boiling)
1/4 cup milk


  • Take half cup sugar and melt it on low flame. Stirring with wooden spoon first and later just swirl. When it reaches a nice caramelly color pour in boiling water and stir. This will result in some fireworks but they die down. Once mixed remove from flame and let it cool
  • Powder the remaining sugar. Beat with butter till light and creamy
  • Pour in the cooled caramel( it doesnt have to be ice cold , just ensure its not boiling enough to give you scars)
At this point the butter will melt , cuz thats what butter does. If its too liquid you can place your bowl on top of another bowl filled with ice and cold water. As long as its relatively solid you're good to go
  • Beat in 1 egg at a time . Add vanilla
  • Sift in flour soda and powder and fold in batter
  • Fold in the milk (The milk wasn't in the original recipe as this is more of a fruit cake- you can notice presence of nuts in original draft. But as i want a fluffy regular kind i added milk. Its still a thick batter but it works- Cake magic , go figure)
  • Pour in tray , level it and bake for 50 -60 minutes  when toothpick inserted comes out clean 
P.s- this is a good teatime cake as it is . You can add nuts to it if you really really wanna

Macerated Strawberries


  • 3 cups chopped Strawberries
  • Sugar to taste


  • Muddle up the sugar and Berries. Let it sit for a while
  • Put on heat , mash the berries for about 5 minutes

Stable Whipped Cream


  • 200 ml Heavy cream ( I only get the 20 % butter fat one :|  so I have to make lemonade)
  • 3 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 Tablespoon gelatin


  • Lightly mix the cream and sugar and refrigerate along with the whisk for an hour
  • Soak the gelatin in 2 tablespoon water
  • Whip cream to soft peaks
  • Add vanilla and soaked gelatin
  • Whip for hard peaks.

Now layer cream and strawberries and go wild .

This is honestly the top 3 cakes I've ever made flavour wise. Here's to caramelyy strawberriyy times 

Quickie! :Mango Sandwich

Here's a new feature I wanna start:
A Quickie- essentially no yaking, no reminiscing, only Superfast food !

I take that back. Less yaking.
Its SUMMERTIME! Read: Mango season. YAAAAYIEEE :D *epic joy dance*
Sadly the beginning mangoes are not so sweet so I'm the only one in the house loving these poor rejects.

This place in Old Delhi sells fruit sandwiches, I've heard so much and its been on my go to list since 2 years now . Hopefully these holidays is can tick it off the list
Until then I'll make it as home :)

  • Bread slices
  • Mango (or any other fruit you want . or a mix)
  • Paneer (any soft /hard cheese would do . this is just a basic structure)
  • Chaat Masala *CAN'T BE DONE WITHOUT*


  • Chop up the fruit. Stuff on bread
  • Crumble the cheese(paneer). Shower on Fruit(mango)
  • Generously douse the fruit cheese and bread with magic flavorful powder(Chaat masala)
  • Other bread on top

Happy Snacking HUMAAANS 

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Chewy MMmmy Chocolate Chip Cookies - The taste of Success

Do you remember that friend's episode where Monica spends a lifetime trying to replicate Phoebe's grandmother's cookie recipe. And batch no 26 makes Chandler barf .Hehe. I should really stop watching Friends so much , but its so warm and loving that a marathon is necessary every 2-3 months!
Anywhoo , it turns out that the recipe was the Nestle toll house chocolate chip one so guess who put it on their Bakingbucketlist * I really do have a bakingbucketlist now. It has some very interesting things on it ! *

So on a glorious Tuesday morning, this excited little girl beat and mixed and stirred and baked. This is how it went

Me: I made cookies!
Friend: What Kind?
Me: The failure kind  :(

They fell flat , spread out  and had an over airy texture. Tasted nice and buttery but you would not buy a shitty looking cookie now would you?I Renamed then crapbakes- The same flat-spreading thing had happened to my sister's chocolate chip cookies once. She said they were like traybakes, I said more like crapbakes . Ever since then it's been our running joke.

The determined thing that I am I looked around and read Quintals of tips and tricks to nail cookies. Here's what I came up with.

A Messy Cook's Tips for Success Cookies

  • Mix using a wooden spoon. An electric beater over-beats the batter making it too airy. This spoils the texture
  • Melted butter gives a chewy texture. So find a recipe with melted butter if that's what you want. My mum didn't appreciate the chewyness , so cold butter for her.
  • Use only Egg Yolks . Whites make it cakey -Unless you need macaroon or meringues , cuz they only use whites
  • A little Cornflour helps . I don't know how but it just does
  • A combination of brown sugar and white sugar's to be used. 
  • Refrigerate the dough atleast for an  hour
  • Roll the cookies vertically tall and not flattened
  • Refrigerate for 15 minutes before cooking
  • Make it with love and happiness. All food tastes better that way :)

I learnt most of this and made another batch using this recipe( 2/3rd of it actually)  and the cookies were EPICAWESOME! So I went ahead and named them success. 
Also I wasn't kidding about the Love part. Call me a hippie but 10 minutes into the recipe when the cookies were nicely round and not spreading out like pancakes, I sang I love you to them for the next 5 minutes- I kid you not.
The recipe then?

Chewy MMmmy Chocolate Chip Cookies

Preheat oven to 170C
Line a baking tray with butterpaper and grease it


100gm(1/2cup) Melted Butter
1/4 cup White sugar
1/2 cup Brown sugar
( Feel kinda racist discriminating between the Caucasian and Indian sugars)
2 tbsp Honey
2 tsp Vanilla Essence
1 Egg Yolk ( reserve the white. If the batter is too thick then add a tablespoon but not all )
1 & 1/3 cup Flour
1 tbsp Cornflour
1 tsp baking soda

1 cup - chocolate chips/ nuts/ MnMs/ Butterscotch chips/ what else can be put in a cookie?


  • Mix the butter and vanilla
  • Powder the sugars and stir in using a wooden spoon
  • Add honey, mix .Add egg yolk, mix - DO NOT OVER BEAT 
  • Sift together Flour, Cornflour and soda. Mix in batter
  • Stir in the 1 cup of culinary creativity
  • Refrigerate the dough for atleast an hour
  • Use a teaspoon to measure batter and make oval towers with your palm
  • Line these on the tray . Cookies should be spaced out * high times yaow* with about an inch between them
  • Refrigerate this for 10-15 minutes
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes -*Whisper * I love you. I love you ,. I love you . I love you so much . I love you . I  love you . I love you
Let it cool .
I just lied . Don't let it cool . Eat a big bite, burn your tongue . But thou shalt have no regrets whatsoever

Friday, 28 March 2014

Pop! the Magic Brownies

NO its not that kind of magic, unless you want it to be *wink*

So I gots me a new oven , AWWYEAAAH!!
There are very very few things that bring such joy to life. But yeah less jibber jabber . Let's get down to the business of making the best brownies there ever have existed, and they're just cocoa brownies!

This recipe has been tried and tested and made and remade and loved and loved and loved , so don't hesitate , Bake!

Borrowed from here .

Roastin me some walnuts

That's how brown it should get . anything more and bam ! blackness

Mixin it all in

Awesomeness Brownies

Preheat oven at 180 C
Grease with butter and dust  your favourite baking tray with cocoa powder.


150 gm(3/4 cup) Butter
250 gm (1&1/4 cup)Sugar - measure and then powder
3/4 cup Cocoa Powder
1 tsp Vanilla essence
2 Eggs (chilled)
35 gm(1/3 cup +1 Tbsp) Flour

1 cup Chopped walnuts, almonds, Lalala freedom to go nutso
1 cup chocolate chips or ooh White chocolate chips!*Just came up with this one . MUST TRY*
1 tsp Instant Coffee - incase you want an overly intense dark brownie experience.I honestly don't


  • Put butter in a pan and heat on low flame till light caramelly in colour. It'll be really foamy so keep swirling and by no means leave it unattended . It will burn and you will end up with brownie poo :(. This will take about 3-5 minutes. Switch off heat. Cool for like 5 minutes while you boogie/pee .
  • Add sugar and beat in with a wooden spoon ( your kitchen will now smell of butterscotch deliciousness)
  • Sift in cocoa powder (or don't , incase you like yourself some lumps) and coffee powder- if using ( Again - I don't)- and Vanilla essence .
Id like to take a break from the recipe to tell you that I use double or triple the amount of vanilla mentioned in any recipe . If like me you too like to live dangerously , follow suit.
  • Now crack those chilled from the fridge eggs in and beat with a wooden spoon . Beat and beat and sing a song about it too!
  • Sift the flour in and gently stir. Now add or not add your optional additives
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes .
And now My mouth is watering so Im gonna go bake another batch . Toodles :*

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Some Thai Green Papaya Salad

It's called Som Tam actually, but thats not what I made.
Wait! you say.Um, its been a year and this is how we start off?

YEAAH! We start with food :D
Where was I? Yeah , I was busy gathering experiences in the kitchen and life- meeting new people, making new mistakes, discovering new music. Also being wrapped up in my blanket cuz its Just. SO. COLD :|
And what do we do to punch cold in the face? Make a summery salad and blog about it *jazz hands*

Focus Sophia!
Som Tam is a Thai salad made with green papaya. And as authenticity is my moto I got the traditional recipe from ...The Internet! An American food website at that . And I didn't have all the right ingredients so I substituted a lot. And then my palate didn't love it so I added other stuff.
Unlike baking-which is a precise science -, Cooking(or not even cooking since Im just making a salad) is an art. The art of winging it and being lucky. Well no its not that bad but its not about precision , it's about what feels right.

That is why I claim to have made a just a Green Papaya Salad. For kindof authentic Som Tam try my source.
Green papya

Massacred in the box grater

Roasting my own peanuts . Feel free to get if from a packet.

My Mise-en

For the dressing

Green Papaya Salad


1/2 Green Papaya
15 Green Beans(French Beans)
2 Tomatoes
2 Spring Onions
A handful of Parsley
1/2 cup Roasted Salted Peanuts
1 Kinnow/Kinu/ Orange/Madarin/ The citrus brother in your hood
Kinnow or Kinu- A hybrid Juicer Indian orange

Dressing :
1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
1 Tablespoon Jaggery/Palm Sugar/Whatever sweetens your fancy
2 Cloves Garlic
1 Fresh Red Chilli
1 Lemon


  • Boil some water in a pot. Add salt. Add the beans and cook until half done.
  • Peel the papaya and grate it using a box grater or a shredder
  • Finely chop the tomatoes, spring onions and parsley.
  • Roughly chop the Citrus fruit and peanuts
  • Now mix it all together in a bowl
  • In a blender, blend all the dressing ingredients
           Chop the garlic and chilli. Muddle all the ingredients in a mortar pestle
  • Pour over the salad
  • Mix 

Now indulge in a ray of summer in the middle of winter.

Ps- I just found out that Som Tam is No 46 on CNN's list of 50 best foods in the World!
NOTE TO SELF: Must make the remaining 49 .