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Quarantine Cookbook: 8 Desserts and Beverages you must try at home

We would all agree with one fact. This quarantine has given us the perfect opportunity to relish and enjoy desserts and satisfy our ever sweet-tooth. “When we are stressed, we can resist ice-creams, cakes, and chocolates because s-t-r-e-s-s-e-d spelled backwards is d-e-s-s-e-r-t-s.” Oops! Too cliché, right? Anyway, the following recipes are for people with a sweet tooth. We may eat all the dishes in the world, but the happiness of ending our meal with a dessert gives us immense satisfaction and a sense of fulfillment.

Baking may be regarded as a science, but it’s the chemistry between the ingredients and the cook that gives desserts life. Baking is done out of love, to share with family and friends, to see them smile

Anna Olson
Measurements and abbreviations
  1. 1 cup      = 130 grams of flour or sugar
  2. 1 cup      = 250 ml for oil, milk or in simpler terms is 1 glass
  3. Tbsp.      = Tablespoon
  4. Tsp.        = Teaspoon
I have therefore curated the following recipes especially keeping in mind a Bachelor’s constraints
  • Desserts
    1. Carrot Halwa
    2. Chocolate cake
    3. Lemon cake
    4. Rabri
    5. Choco Chip cookies
  • Beverages
    1. Italian Hot Chocolate
    2. Dalgona Coffee
    3. Lemon Iced Tea

DESSERTS

CARROT HALWA

Carrot halwa is easy to make with minimal ingredients and does not even require an oven.

Gajar ka Halwa
Source: Google Images
  • Ingredients
    1. Carrots ( 4 cups – finely grated)
    2. Milk ( 4 cups) 
    3. Ghee ( 4 tbsp)
    4. Sugar ( 10 tbsp )
    5. Cardamom (1 tsp- powdered) 
    6. Nuts ( Cashews, almonds)
    7. Saffron (a pinch)
  • Procedure
    1. In a large pan, add the grated carrots and milk.
    2. Cook it on a low flame while continuously mixing until it reduces.
    3. While continuously mixing add ghee, sugar, and cardamom powder.
    4. When the mixture has reduced well (little milk is visible) add the nuts and saffron as a garnish. Serve hot or warm!!

CHOCOLATE CAKE

Who doesn’t love a moist creamy, melt in the mouth chocolate cake?ch

  • Ingredients
    1. All-purpose refined flour ( 2 cups)
    2. Sugar ( 2 cups) 
    3. Cocoa powder ( 3/4 cup) 
    4. Baking powder ( 1 tsp)
    5. Baking soda ( 2 tsp) 
    6. Buttermilk ( 1 cup)
    7. Eggs ( 2 nos)
    8. Vanilla extract ( 2 tsp)
    9. Coffee (1 cup- freshly brewed)
    10. Vegetable oil ( 1/2 cup)
  • Procedure
    1. Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a bowl and mix well.
    2. In another bowl mix the buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla extract.
    3. Add the dry mix to this bowl and continue mixing.
    4. Slowly add the coffee while whisking.
    5. Pour the batter into a baking pan that’s been buttered with a brush.
    6. Flatten the cake mix with a spatula.Bake in an oven for 30 minutes at 180ºC. Insert a toothpick in the cake.
    7. It’s completely cooked if the toothpick is clear.Remove from the oven and let it cool.

LEMON CAKE

Lemon cake
Source: Google Images
  • Ingredients
    1. All-purpose refined flour ( 1 cups)
    2. Sugar ( 50 grams) 
    3. Baking powder ( 1.5 tsp)
    4. Baking soda ( 1 tsp)
    5. Curd ( 1.5 cups) Oil ( 1/2 cup)
    6. Lemon juice ( 2 tbsp)
    7. Lemon zest (1 tbsp)
  • Procedure
    1. Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, and baking soda, mix well.
    2. In another bowl mix the curd, oil, lemon juice, and zest.Mix the wet and dry ingredients. 
    3. Preheat the oven at 180 degrees Celsius for 10 minutes.
    4. Coat the baking pan with parchment paper and pour in the mixed cake batter.
    5. Bake in the oven for 40 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius until it is well baked.
    6. Remove from the oven and let it cool. The cake is ready to be ravished!!

RABRI

Rasgulla and malai are now replaced with Rabri. Yummy!

  • Ingredients
    1. Milk ( 1 liter- full cream)
    2. Sugar ( 1/4 cup) 
    3. Cardamom powder ( 1/2 tsp) 
    4. Saffron ( 2tbsp)
    5. Pistachios ( 7 nos – chopped)
    6. Almonds ( 5 nos – chopped)
    7. Cashews ( 10 nos – chopped)
  • Procedure
    1. In a non-stick pan, heat milk while stirring occasionally.
    2. Reduce the flame to medium. A layer of cream will be formed. Stick it to the side of the pan. 
    3. Get the milk to boil again and repeat the gathering of cream till the milk reduces to one-third the initial volume.
    4. Add sugar, cardamom powder, and saffron to the milk.
    5. Mix well and get the milk to boil.
    6. Scrape the cream from the sides and mix with the milk. Stir well. 
    7. Cool it to room temperature and garnish with the chopped nuts.Serve chilled or hot!!

CHOCO CHIP COOKIES

Cookies are a go-to snack be it for morning tea or evening coffee.

  • Ingredients
    1. Butter (1 cup – salted)
    2. Sugar (1 cup- white) 
    3. Sugar (1 cup- brown) 
    4. Vanilla extract ( 2 tsp) 
    5. Eggs ( 2 nos) 
    6. Flour ( 3 cups)
    7. Baking soda (1 tsp)
    8. Baking powder ( ½ tsp)
    9. Salt ( 1 tsp)
    10. Chocolate chips (2 cups)
  • Procedure
    1. In a bowl mix, flour, baking soda, salt, and baking powder. Whisk together butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until they are well combined. 
    2. Beat in eggs and vanilla until they are fluffy. Mix the ingredients well.
    3. Add the chocolate chips and mix well.
    4. Roll the dough into balls and flatten with a rolling pin.
    5. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius for 10 minutes. Place a baking pan with parchment paper.
    6. Place the rolled dough in the baking pan and bake for 10 minutes.
    7. Remove from oven when they barely start browning.
    8. Cool in the baking pan for 10 minutes.The cookies are ready to be served!!

BEVERAGES

ITALIAN HOT CHOCOLATE

Being quarantined at home can still be stressful for us. Substitute tea for a cup of creamy frothy cup of hot chocolate

  • Ingredients
    1. Milk Chocolate (100 g- grated) 
    2. Cornstarch (1 tbsp) 
    3. Milk (2 cups) 
    4. Cocoa powder (1 tbsp)
    5. Sugar (1 tbsp)
    6. Salt ( a pinch)
  • Procedure
    1. In a bowl add cornstarch and milk.
    2. Mix it well and keep it asideIn a milk pot, add the cocoa powder, salt, and sugar with 1 cup of milk.
    3. Whisk well in a low flame and bring it to a simmer.
    4. Add the cornstarch mixture and continue whisking slowly. 
    5. Add the chocolate and continue whisking until it thickens.
    6. It can be garnished with whipped cream.Hot chocolate is ready to be served!!

DALGONA COFFEE

There is a creamier frothier way to drink coffee now. It’s everyone’s current obsession. The Dalgona coffee!

Dalgona Coffee
Source: Cookpad
  • Ingredients
    1. Instant coffee powder ( 2 tbsp) 
    2. Sugar (2 tbsp) 
    3. Boiling water ( 2 tbsp) 
    4. Milk (1/2 cup- Warm or cold)
  • Procedure
    1. In a bowl, add the coffee powder, sugar, and hot water.
    2. Use a mixer to whip the mixture until it is light brown, fluffy, and frothy. 
    3. In a mug add the milk. Using a spoon add dollops of the fluffy coffee mix and smoothen the top.

LEMON ICED TEA

Let’s look at a healthy beverage, Lemon tea which is also a recommended relaxant and antioxidant.

Lemon Iced tea
Source: Google Images
  • Ingredients
    1. Green tea bags
    2. Lemon juice ( 1 tbsp) 
    3. Water ( 1.5 cups)
    4. Baking soda
    5. Sugar
  • Procedure
    1. Boil 4 cups of water then add to a large heat-proof pitcher.
    2. Add the baking soda and sugar. Mix well until the sugar dissolves.
    3. Add the tea bags and let steep for 10 minutes.  The longer you steep the stronger the taste.
    4. Remove all of the tea bags.  Add the lemon juice.
    5. Top off the rest of the pitcher with cold water.  Place in the refrigerator until chilled.
    6. When ready to serve, add lemon slices and ice to the glasses then pour the tea.

I sincerely hope that these recipes are able to satisfy your hunger for desserts in these trying times. If you have any recipes to add to the Pastry cookbook, do comment.  

[Also Read: 10 non-conventional things you can learn to cook during Lockdown: Quarantine Cookbook]

Bon Appétit

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