Whole Wheat Oats Banana Honey Bread – Eggless, Sugarless, Butterless

Whole Wheat Oats Banana Honey Bread

Whole Wheat Oats Banana Honey Bread

Less is definitely more. Especially when it comes to this divine soft dense bread. Going sugar free and fat free along with skipping the eggs is no joke guys. Really. Skeptical from scratch, I still ventured ahead because the germ of the idea had firmly incorporated itself in my head.
Banana bread. Sounds so enticing, and when you make it literally fat free and supremely healthy who would want to wait and why? 🙂

So healthy

So healthy

If truth be told, I had never eaten banana bread before but had seen numerous recipes floating around. So when I came across this super healthy recipe with easily available ingredients I got all excited and eager. I sieved, mixed and baked. And then I waited. While the beauty rose, my house smelled warm and divine. I could hardly wait for it to cool down. To kill time, I put up teasers on my page on FB, chatted with friends, disturbed the husband and checked the clock repeatedly.

Finally when my knife sank into the well risen bread, well.. so did my heart. It was dense and slightly sticky. My face fell. The excitement evaporated. What did I make? Is it supposed to be like this? This thing has all the stuff which never goes into making bread – whole grain, oats, no sugar, no butter, no eggs… yea, it has all rights to be what it is. I was crest fallen.

When I took a teeny tiny piece for him to taste and give his highly valued verdict, all that he could gesture(he was on those never ending conf calls of his) was ‘ya nice, now go’. Sigh! With no bona fide feedback, I resigned to FB and friends. They did rescue me. Both FB food groups and my dear friends.

So what I learnt was that Banana bread is naturally dense and more moist than other cakes. Depending on the quantity of bananas used, the result could vary in stickiness(I hope that’s a word).
Oh Well. One pal of mine went a step ahead, smeared a slice with some tart marmalade and encouraged me to take a mouthful. I hesitated. But just one bite was enough to tell me, I didn’t have a recipe failure for sure 🙂 It tasted SO good with the fruit preserve, that I wondered why I was in any doubt in the first place.

Yumm with some nutella

Yumm with some nutella

gorgeous Crust

gorgeous Crust

This recipe has been adapted from here.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour or atta
  • 1 cup mashed banana
  • 1/2 cup Oats
  • 1/3 cup Orange juice or sweet lime juice
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3 tbsp. oil
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tbsp. chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • A pinch of salt

Method

Preheat oven to 180°C and grease a bread pan and keep aside.

Take whole wheat flour, Oats, baking soda, baking powder, salt and chocolate chips in a large bowl and mix well. In another bowl add mashed banana, oil, honey, cider vinegar, mosambi juice and combine well.

Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour the wet ingredients in it. Mix until just combined.
Pour the batter in the greased baking tin and bake for about 40 minutes or till done. Mine was done in 50 minutes. Once done. Cool well. Invert and slice thinly.

Serve with butter or jam or nutella.

Good with some butter

Good with some butter

Note: Sanjeeta of LiteBite.in encourages to use apple cider vinegar as it acts as a substitute to eggs and gives lightness to the bake. Apple cider variety has a lovely taste than the plain vinegar. If you want to skip it, then add yogurt instead.

Jam and Nutella - perfect on some bread

Jam and Nutella – perfect on some bread

For the next two days, my breakfast comprised of a slice of this delicious bread, some marmalade, a glass of warm milk and 5-6 almonds. The natural sweeteners in the cake took care of my day’s sweet cravings and I for one felt like some harbinger of good health and nutrition.

Sugarless, butterless and eggless

Sugarless, butterless and eggless

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To Santa with love – Strawberry Cake

To Santa, with Love

To Santa, with Love

I love winters. My most favorite season. I love December. My most favorite month.
And a wintery december brings with it a host of festivities. Tis the season of weddings(in India). Tis the time to shop till you drop. Tis the month of Christmas. Tis the month of Santa!

From the time I have been told about good old Santa Claus, I have believed in him. I still do. I believe in this incredible concept of hope and joy.

Children hope that Santa would true their innermost desires. We also do something similar, albeit a tad differently. We hope for some surreal magic in our daily lives that would elevate and give wings to our wants.
It is this exact faith that makes a child dream and aspire. He dreams, hence he achieves. So in effect am I saying Santa has a huge role in shaping your child’s future? Er… Not exactly..but what I am trying to say is – Santa is important. It is more important to believe in him than discuss the validity of his existence.
So go ahead tell your child about good old Santa Claus. Tell them about his gift decisive lists, the elves, the North Pole, his sleigh, about Rudolph.. let those little eyes fill with wonder, those spirits soar, let those hearts fill with hope and everlasting joy. Let.
This post is dedicated to Santa Claus.

Joinin in the festivities :)

Joinin in the festivities 🙂

The quintessential red and white needs to be emulated. So what better than strawberries and cream. Oh! such a classic combination. And its Christmas! So cake has to be there too. So what do you get when you throw in cake, strawberries and cream – ah, no rocket science this. Strawberry Cake you fellas! 🙂

Strawberries and Cream - can't go wrong with these two!

Strawberries and Cream – can’t go wrong with these two!

As I sieved, added and mixed, the incessant chatter of my 6 year old was on. Her innumerable queries on anything remotely to Santa, Christmas, trees and gifts was already putting me in a tizzy. So, to rest the chatterbox a while, I invented a story. This spur-of-the-moment-thought-of story which had Santa as a super hero had my little girl transfixed, her imagination on fire and the tongue firmly in place. 🙂

There is no thing like "extra" cream ;)

There is no thing like “extra” cream 😉

 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all purpose flour/maida
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 cup butter or oil
  • 1/2 cup sugar (use a little bit less than 1/2 a cup)
  • 1/2 cup curds
  • 1/4 tsp strawberry essence
  • 2 drops vanilla essence
  • milk, as required

For the icing:

  • 2 cups of sliced strawberries
  • 1/2 cup of sugar water – mix 1 tablespoon of sugar in 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup of whipping or any heavy cream – sweetened.

Method

Preheat the oven at 200C for 8-10 minutes. Till then, sieve the flour, baking powder and soda. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar till smooth. I usually add little by little to ensure a smooth uniform paste. Then using a tablespoon, alternate between curds and flour, that is, pour curds, mix. Then flour. Mix. Do till you finish the given quantities of curds and flour. If the batter is too thick, then add a few tablespoons of milk and mix to make a smooth batter. Add both the essences. Give it a final whirl. Pour the batter in a greased tin. Bake at 170C for at least 25 minutes. Check by inserting a toothpick at the center of the cake, if it comes out clean, then the cake is done. If not, then bake for a couple of more minutes till the cake is uniformly baked.

Remove the tin, cool.

Icing:

Whip the cream till you get soft peaks. Slice the cake horizontally using a sharp long blade knife. On the bottom portion, sprinkle some sugar water. Place a semi thick layer of cream on the base. Top with sliced strawberries. Now keep the sliced portion on the creamed strawberry topped base. Repeat the process. If desired you could apply cream on the sides too. Chill for atleast 30 minutes before serving it.

Serving Suggestion: Serve every slice with more cream and strawberries!

Yummy bite

Yummy bite

Note: The intermittent additions of the ingredients combined with the mixing of the batter, ensures it a smooth, knot free batter. I have found this to be a never-fail technique when baking eggless. It makes the cake lighter and airier.

Note: If you do not have heavy cream or whipped cream, use a toned lighter cream(like Amul in India), whip the lighter cream in a bowl placed on a bed of ice of another bowl. This helps the light cream to gain some volume and body.

Note: Top with as much strawberries as you can. It is never too much. The sweet and the tart and the cream … ooh! so delicious!

We love you Santa

We love you Santa

That night she wanted to leave a slice by the tree. I let her.

But then, when she was fast asleep, dreaming and living her fancies, is when I tiptoed to the little tree, relished half the slice, refrigerated the rest.  There! done. I just had to be up before her and place the  half eaten slice back near the tree. 🙂

Everyone needs a Santa in their life. I’m hers.

Merry Christmas!!

Merry Christmas!!

Merry Christmas my lovely readers! Merry Christmas.

Dark Double Chocolate Walnut Brownies

Dark Double chocolate walnut brownie served with warm milk

Dark Double chocolate walnut brownie served with warm milk

I like to cook, but it doesn’t mean I eat all that I have experimented in the kitchen. So, I tend to distribute all the goodies among family, friends and neighbors.
But we are Indians. We are taught not to take stuff, and if we do, we have to reciprocate in a similar manner. As products of this culturally strong country it is imbibed in us to return favors, especially food favors.

Decadent and dense

Decadent and dense

Now what happens is, all those boxes that I send over, comes back loaded with more food.. glorious food! You can imagine my plight. My umpteen refusals and explanations falls on deaf ears. They willingly accept and smilingly give back more. Sigh!

Whipped up a brown storm

Whipped up a brown storm

Now, a very exciting recipe was on the card, a dark double chocolate walnut brownie! While I sieved/mixed/baked, I thought of all the smiles I was going to bring on little expectant faces! But then the thought of the returned boxes haunted my vision. Then is when I went smart.
This time, I carefully packed the treat in disposable containers. Ingenious eh?

Brownies and Milk

Brownies and Milk

Well.. not so much. Favors, you package them in tupperware or in aluminium foil, are favors. They have to be returned come what may. My bad.

dense bite

dense bite

Multiple compliments on the awesomeness of the brownie was combined with what became my lunch and dinner for next couple of days. Just 15 minutes of toil and I was exempt from cooking next few meals. Yea… people are that sweet around me.

Hello Kitty eyes the treat

Hello Kitty eyes the treat

I’ve made brownies before. But I tried a new formula, where coffee and dark chocolate thrown in, take these little eggless brownie to another level altogether. Dense, chewy, gooey, this little joy is best enjoyed in my place with a generous drizzle of chocolate sauce and a huge scoop of vanilla ice cream! DE-LISH!

Dark chocolate and coffee in it!

Dark chocolate and coffee in it!

The original recipe is a triple chocolate one. But I ran short of vanilla chocolate chips and made do with only dark chocolate, coffee and walnuts. So double chocolate it is.

Dark choco chips, walnuts and brownies

Dark choco chips, walnuts and brownies

The Recipe:

Ingredients

  • 1 cup maida/all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder, unsweetened
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar, I actually used a little bit more than 1/3 cup.
  • Baking powder 1 tsp
  • Baking soda 1/4 tsp
  • 1/4 cup Dark chocolate chopped into pieces or dark chocolate chips
  • Instant coffee powder 1 tbsp
  • 2-3 tbsp chopped toasted walnuts
  • Warm Milk 1/3 cup
  • Curd 1/2 cup, whisk it before using
  • melted butter, 1/4 cup. Original calls for oil, but oil makes my cakes smell.. so I tend to avoid oil.
  • Vanilla essence 1/4 tsp
  • YEP, they are eggless too!!

Method

Preheat oven to 150 C. Dissolve the instant coffee powder in 1/3 cup of milk. Stir and set aside.
In a big mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients except the chocolate chips. Mix well. Now, make a well in the center of the dry mixture. Add the coffee, curd, vanilla and butter.
Using a hand whisk, gently mix the ingredients until well combined. Make sure the wet ingredients are incorporated into the dry ingredients. Don’t over mix the batter. Requirement is of dense gooey brownies, not a well risen cake!
Now, pour half of the batter into a parchment paper lined tray and evenly spread it out using a spatula making sure that it covers the whole pan. Gently tap the pan onto the counter. Sprinkle 1/2 of the chocolate chips. Evenly.
Now, add the remaining dark chocolate bits to the remaining batter and pour over. Gently even using a spatula even the surface out. Place the tray into the preheated oven. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Once done, let it cool completely before you cut them into neat squares! Enjoy warm with a glass of milk.

Note: if you notice the brownies I’ve made, they have risen a little. I mixed the batter a bit more than required. Hence, you make sure to beat the batter just so much as to incorporate the contents properly.

Fresh out of the oven

Fresh out of the oven

Note: Its always better to line your tray with parchment paper before pouring the batter in. It’s cleaner, neater and you have no hassle of brownie ends clinging on to the aluminium.

Sinful Indulgence

Sinful Indulgence

Note: Try adding vanilla chocolate chips too to the batter, thus making it a “Triple chocolate Brownie“. Havent tried it, but am sure it would transport me to another realm.

Double Chocolate Wonder

Double Chocolate Wonder

Note: If you’re not a nut fan( 🙂 ), skip the walnuts. I had kids removing the highly nutritious nut and gobbling up the chocolate bit. Milee sulked for a whole 10 minutes when she saw I threw in walnuts, but then later she had more than her share, when I removed the spoilers for her.

Bundle of joy

Bundle of joy

Note: All in all this recipe took 1 hour to make. Just 15 minutes to get the batter ready, 30-35 minutes to bake and after it was out of the oven, we lost track of time..:)

Try stopping with one...

Try stopping with one…

In case you are wondering of my abnegation of chocolates and sweets. Mere mortal me, tried hard. Then gave up the giving up of life’s simple pleasures. I do indulge, but just a wee bit. One tiny amazing dense chocolaty brownie piece is all that I ever need to feel the fullness of Life.