Veggies and Cheese stuffed Pinwheels – Spiced,Eggless,Whole wheat and Irresistible!

 This should have been one of those soul inspiring or a post with a deep message or something thereof. Truth be told, I was one heck of a distracted soul yesterday and goofed up on a couple of things including the prep on what I needed to do . But hey all is well that ends well right?? Plus it’s the weekend and we can all afford to go a wee bit crazy after a week of 5.30 AM alarming alarms..  Keeping it short and simple.. Just so you know while this was happening, I think Mrs. Doubtfire would have been awfully proud of me. Disaster not withstanding and leaky taps not holding me back , no sir I do not know what you are talking about the orange cup. I think Mr. Bean was channeled and changed genders in my kitchen today 🙂  So did feel like some sort of metaphysical channeling happened right there and I survived and saved the day ! Excuse me while I try and pat my back 🙂

 

So here it goes.. This one is awesome and the recipe is a sure shot keeper. Pinwheels of somewhat flaky and slightly crispy, tender, baked bread encasing spicy veg filling tempered with cheese. Absolutely sinful ( on a diet, well not really ) and so worth it ! An absolute crowd pleaser and kid certified recipe ! Perfect for starter and evening snack. Make it a winner with a cup of hot steaming ginger chai – Cure all for all times !

Truth behind...
Truth behind…

Prep time : 30 minutes    Dough rising time : 110 minutes   Baking time : 20 min  Serves 4-6

 Ingredients (Makes 12-14 pinwheels)

 For the Dough:-

  • 1.5 cup white whole wheat flour (I used KA)
  • 1/2  cup of APF  + 1/2  more cup  as needed
  • 1/2 tsp Jeera or cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp Ajwain  or carom seeds
  • 1 tsp Kasuri methi or dry fenugreek leaves fine crushed
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. of granulated sugar
  • 2.25 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm milk
  • 1/4 cup + 2-3 Tbsp. cup of warm water- as needed for the dough
  • Flour for dusting if required

For the filling :- (Makes about 2 cups)

  1. 1/2 cup of grated cauliflower
  2. 1/4 cup colored bell peppers of choice, finely chopped
  3. 1/4 cup of Broccoli slaw
  4. 1/4 cup of carrots and green peas
  5. 1/2 cup of onion finely chopped
  6. 1 tsp. of ginger garlic paste
  7. 1 tsp of Pav Bhaji masala 
  8. 1/2 Tsp of Red Chili powder
  9. 1 tsp. of salt and more if required adjusted to taste
  10. 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  11. 1/2 cup shredded cheese blend

Topping

  • 1/4 cup of shredded cheese blend

Method :

First Rise and Dough:

  • Proofing the yeast : Dissolve sugar in warm milk, add yeast and set aside till frothy. This shows the yeast is active and proofing is especially necessary because we are using active dry yeast. If you do not see the frothing in about 5 minute, re do this step. No happy yeast, no bread rise!
  • Mixing the flours: In a  mixing bowl of your stand mixer (if using) or simply any large mixing bowl, add 1.5 cups of white whole wheat flour and 1/2 cup of APF and whisk it to ensure that they thoroughly mixed . Reserve  the second 1/2 cup of all purpose flour to add as needed. This is especially useful when we do not weigh out the flours and use volumetric measurement.
  • Add Ajwain, Jeera and  crushed Kasuri methi ( fine crushed between the palms of your hands) to the sifted flour . Whisk once again to aerate and thoroughly distribute the spices.
  • In the mixer/  large bowl now add the salt. Add in the oil and whisk it once

Kneading and first rise: 

  • Now add in the yeast mix and 1/4 cup of  warm water to the flour mix.
  • Mix it thoroughly and knead well till everything comes together. Note :- Start with 1/4 cup of water to begin with. Once a loose dough ball starts to come together continue kneading for 5-8 minutes till you get a soft, elastic dough. Adjust the water or flour level to ensure the dough is not dry or too sticky. With so much whole wheat in this mix, the pliability will not be comparable to the one using APF exclusively.
  • In a well oiled pan or the same mixing bowl rest the dough ( cover with a damp cloth and keep it in a warm, dry, dark place) for at least 90 minutes until it is doubled in size.

 For the filling : ( while the dough is rising )

  • In a pan, heat the oil and add in the onion and sauté them very well. Now add in the ginger garlic paste, bell pepper , grated cauliflower, peas and carrots and broccoli slaw in succession.
  • Salt it to ensure it cooks well , but retains its crunchiness.
  • Add in the masalas and chili powder and toss it well so it all comes together and let it cook for another 10 minutes or so,
  • Turn off the heat and stir it well .

For the Pinwheels / Second Rise:

  • Line a large rectangular baking pan or two if desired with parchment paper or baking liner.
  • Once the dough has risen, gently deflate it and knead it well for another 2-3 minutes.
  • Roll it out on a floured surface or a lightly greased surface  to make a rectangle .
  • Spread out the cooled filling on it .
  • Top it off with 1/2 cup of cheese that has been shredded. I used the 4 cheese Mexican cheese blend here.
  • Make a jelly roll by rolling from the short end first.
  • Pinch the end of the seams to seal it.
  • Using a very sharp knife , slice it into 1/4 -1/2 inch slices.
  • You should now see concentric rings of dough and filling.
  • Lift them carefully and place it on the baking pan about 3-4 inches part. Absolutely no touching each other !
  • Cover again with the damp cloth and let it rise for another 15-20 minutes.

Baking:

  • When the second rise is happening, preheat the oven to 375 deg F.
  • Once the second rise is done ( there is an obvious increase in size , but it will not double or so), top with some cheese.
  • Bake for about 18 -20 minutes , until golden brown. 

Once baked, carefully remove them from the tray and let cool on a rack.

Make a steaming hot cup of tea/ coffee/ anything else and Enjoy!

 

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Moist Coffee ( Espresso) – Cocoa Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

What do you do when you have bananas attracting fruit flies ( well almost ) and you have an impromptu out of town trip on your hands ? Well you have many options, I say.. Transform the bananas into

  1. Banana bread
  2. Banana and nutella concoction of various kinds
  3. Choc and banana combination .. Ooh!!! heavenly…..
  4. Experiment – coffee, cocoa and banana and white choc chip.

I mean seriously you cannot go wrong with any of these combinations , but the last option was just begging to happen.. So here we go..

Adapted from Various sources

Yields 14-16 muffins Prep time : 15 min   Baking time : 20 -25 min

Ingredients:

  • 3 large over-ripe bananas (1 1/2 cups), mashed 
  • 1 1/2 cups self rising flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/3 cup baking cocoa – unsweetened
  • 2 teaspoon instant espresso powder or instant coffee powder
  • 1/3 cup white chocolate baking chips
  • 1 egg, whisked very well
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup unflavored oil or olive oil
  • 1/3 cup milk 

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350℉.
  • Paper line or prep muffin pans for the required quantity .
  • Add in the baking soda to the flour and mix it very well. Next add in the instant coffee or espresso powder and whisk it very well as well. Follow it with the unsweetened cocoa powder next
  • In a mixer or blender of your choice, combine mashed bananas, sugar, and oil. Mix until well blended.
  • Add milk and egg.Blend well as well.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the wet and fold in the choc chips in it.
  • Fill muffin cups 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool for 15 minutes in the pan before transferring to cooling rack to cool completely.

 

Peach Banana Cinnamon Quick Bread – Moist, Fresh and the Perfect Bite of Summer!

My awesome neighbor dropped a few peaches off for me late yesterday night. Thanks, SP! An unfortunate mix up at the local farmer’s market resulted in an excess bounty of these luscious, fresh,locally grown king peaches! Holy cow! These were pretty, beautiful and begging to be bit into.. Well,Hello Beautiful !!!! You are more than welcome at my place 🙂

So there I was, having a few quiet few minutes to myself, in the wee hours of the morning.. Quiet hours after a bout of insane re -org of the pantry. What,you surprised? Any one who knows me recognizes I go into these occasional bouts of  super clean re -org required in the pantry.. Labels, library books, color coding .. You get the picture 🙂

 

Farmer' market Bounty
Farmer’s market Bounty
Hello Beautiful!
Hello Beautiful!
Ripe, luscious , perfect!
Ripe, luscious , perfect!

In any case, there was this huge basket filled with luscious peaches and speckled bananas calling out to me. Zip, zap and a few more.. This is one delectable piece  and so easy to make. Seriously, my trusted magic bullet came to the rescue and plus I did not feel like messing up the super clean counters…

And here it goes.. the ingredients and method required to make this super delicious,moist and very quick bread!

Wet:

  • Mashed Bananas : 2 large ripe bananas  ( approx. 1-1.25 cups) super speckled and very ripe
  • Firm peaches 2 numbers  : 1.5 cup of finely diced peaches ( skinned is better)
  • Natural Brown Crystal sugar : 1/3 cup
  • Olive oil : 1/4 cup.
  • Large Egg : 1 ( or substitute with flax seed ratio equivalent to one egg.)
  • Pure vanilla extract : 1 Tsp.
  • Plain yogurt : 1/3 cup

Dry:

  • Self rising flour : 1 and 3/4 cup
  • Baking Soda : 3/4 Tsp.
  • Ground Cinnamon : 1.5 Tsp.

Topping:

  • Thin sliced peaches – 10
  • Ground cinnamon: 1 Tsp.
  • Brown Sugar : 1 Tbsp.

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF
  • Grease a 9 by 5 inch bread loaf pan.I used olive oil to great the pan.
  • Whisk the dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl – the self rising APF + baking soda+ cinnamon powder and set aside.
  • Mash/ Puree the bananas. Add in the egg and whisk it very well. Add in the sugar, vanilla extract and whisk very well . Add in the yogurt and oil and whisk it very well again .This entire process of mine happened in one jar of  magic bullet. Neat uh? You can go the traditional way and use the hand mixer or stand mixer too.
  • Fold the dry ingredients aka flour mix into this very gently.
  • Add in the diced peaches and fold it gently into the batter.
  • Empty the batter into the prepped loaf pan.

 Topping:

  • Gently toss the sliced peaches and sugar and cinnamon together so as to coat the slices very well.
  • Top it on the wet batter.
  • I just sort of lined them all up.

Baking:

  • Bake at 350ºF for about 45 – 52 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the center comes clean. Mine was done in about 45 minutes.
  • Cool for about 10 -15 minutes in the pan.
  • Transfer to a wire rack. Let it cool down well before cutting into nice thick slices..
  • Serve it straight up, warm, toasted or let your imagination run riot!

 

Optional:

Chopped walnuts would add in a nice crunchy twist to this as well.

 Want to make this Vegan?

  • Substitute the egg with flax seeds ratio substitution ( 1 egg = 1 Tbsp. of flax seeds + 3Tbsp. of warm water. Dry grind the flaxseeds in spice grinder, add in the warm water and whip it to a very creamy consistency to be used in the place of an egg.)
  • Swap the yogurt for applesauce.

 

Chocolate Chip Banana Walnut Cake

Tweaked from my own recipe….The awesome light and fluffy banana cake..

The only addition I did was adding of handful of white chocolate chip and semi-sweek dark chocolate chip in the mix. Stirred some right in and just added a few to layer the surface.

Yield : 12 M-L muffins/ cupcakes and big fluffy 9 inch one !

Verdict : Delish!

 

 

Banana Walnut Cake – So awesome, Light , Fluffy and Nutty!

Planning your day around possible thunderstorms is a bit like planning a scientific experiment with a ton of variables thrown in. An experiment, that is fun but the outcome  is so unpredictable . To cut a long story short, it was the ” boy who cried wolf “.. while the huge thunderstorms didn’t show up, what did was  a reminder from mother nature that she  was the  one in charge . And we were blessed with blistering temperatures hitting near ninety ..Lovely !!

And of course when temperatures hit that high,  the stock of sorry looking bananas get even more sorrier. read natural organic progression .. more dark brown spots appear ( more like the pounds that magically appear on self ). 🙂 Well, I cannot just dump nearly half a dozen bananas out. They were just overripe and more sweet than the youthful ones. But no amount of cajoling could get my 3A’s to venture near them. And then inspiration stuck, or rather the thought in the back burner   just jumped several hoops ahead to make itself shout ” Make banana bread / cake “. Sure, sounds easy, but here is the cinch, I have never baked this one. Yes, I have baked so many more kinds, but banana bread/cake, the easy peesy one, I have never attempted to do so. Well partially because , I had a good friend who would treat me to her delectable version quite often and partly because it’s banana bread. And well honestly a fruit smoothie would be so much easier. Just throw in the bananas, add a couple more fruits, a dash of honey and there you have it. But no, the itch to bake set in and I do need to scratch it. Call me stubborn, but my friend , let’s just call her D ( you know who you are , sweety), had this heavenly version and  I just wanted to try it. After about  half an hour of searching,I did manage to locate the one. Here is the version, that she primarily used. (http://allrecipes.com/recipe/a-number-1-banana-cake/)

This is the one I based this experiment upon,  but of course my pantry ingredients decided the kind that went into the batter mix. Seriously, I was in  no mood to go shopping to the grocery store in the sweltering heat, just because I did not have buttermilk. The ones’ marked in Asterix, are variations of the original recipe.

Alright , folks, this is my version of the ingredients that went in:

  • 2.5 cups of self rising flour* ( notice it is self rising, why? cause I did not have the regular one ,and seriously a little bit of baking powder should technically make the cake more airy. In any case, my gripe about the run to the grocery store , well I stood my ground )
  • 1/2 cup of  unsalted butter .( You can substitute this with almond butter for a more nuttier taste I suppose )
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup of milk* ( the original recipe called for butter milk. Well, I decided to use milk here 🙂 . Why.. well no buttermilk and seriously, thought milk would be an awesome choice. I used 1% milk of course.)
  • 1 and 3/4 cup of sugar* – I used brown granulated sugar entirely
  • About 5 medium ripe bananas  * mine were pretty spotty brown ( the original recipe calls for 4. But I suppose an additional banana would do no harm )
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 pinch salt
  • A generous pinch of saffron *( I know I am obsessed with saffron )
  • A generous pinch of caradamom powder *
  • 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts
  • 1/4 cup of skinned sliced almonds*
  • A pinch of cinnamon powder *

( Whew, don’t let the exhausting list fool you. I just emptied those nuts that were sitting in the pantry. And decided to add in a few flavors  to enhance the mix. More like, once I get started, I just cannot get to stop myself from adding a dash of this and dash of that ).

Alright, now that the stage is set, lets get the gooey good stuff going.

Prep work:

  • Preheat the oven / 350 deg
  • Grease and flour the pans of your choice. the original recipe called for two 8 inch pans. I used one 8  inch round and one 9 inch square pan.

Let’s get the party started …

  1. Sift the flour,baking soda and salt together and set aside.
  2. Cream the butter,sugar and eggs.
  3. Add in the pureed bananas,,cardamom powder ,cinnamon powder and saffron strands.
  4. Add in the flour and whip up the gooey mixture.
  5. Fold in the walnuts and almonds

Let’s cook them:

Stick those pans in the preheated oven and bake them at 350 deg for 30 min.

The results:

Holy mackerel ! Honest to goodness yummy light and fluffy and airy goodness in squares and circles. Beautiful brown goodness, perfectly baked and crunchy walnuts. The aroma filled the entire kitchen and brought the oldest scooting down to the kitchen.. all the way form the attic. 🙂

Texture : Very very soft ( possibly the baking powder in the self rising flour combined with the baking soda, did wonders) and porus.

Aroma : Fragrant cardamom and hint of cinnamon with saffron emanating creating the wonderful fusion with bananas.

Serve it up..the kids devoured it it warm with the cool combination of whipped cream. Yummy!

Verdict: Just awesome !.. And like I always believe, great cooking results is mostly achieved by right combination of ingredients and the freshness of  your stock. And of course, the right chemistry !!!

I give in!

I have been gently prodded, bugged and more or less nudged to compile my list of experiments, recipes and the general affirmations and decimations that stewed in my kitchen!..Well affirmations more so, and decimations when I finally utilize my organic and molecular chemistry aka common sense in most cases to figure out why certain experiments did not really fare well..

Well here I am after so many odd years of kitchen chemistry and well meaning friends to embark on this journey, so to speak!

Salute!