Sunday, 3 May 2015

Eggless Banana Chocolate and Walnut Cake

Ingredients  Serves 6-8

2 medium bananas (if you don’t like banana can substitute with 150mls milk)
1 x 397g tin sweetened condensed milk
220g Nutella
200g self-raising flour
30g good-quality cocoa powder
20g coarsely-ground toasted walnut
1 tbsp melted butter
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cornflour


1. Preheat the oven to 160°C. Grease and line a 10 inches round tin
2. Peel and mash the bananas into a smooth puree
3. In a stand mixer or large bowl, add the condensed milk, banana puree, Nutella, melted butter. Whisk until completely smooth and combined.

4. In a separate bowl, sift the cake flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and cornflour.

5. Add the cake flour to the wet mixture in three stages, whisking until smooth each time. Be careful not to overwork the batter or your cake will be heavier than it should be. Finally, fold in the toasted walnuts.

6. Pour the batter greased and lined tins and smooth out the tops. Bake in the over for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cakes comes out clean.

Do not open your oven door during cooking – this will deflate your cake and make them sink in the middle.

7. When the cake is fully baked, run a sharp knife around the edge of the tin to loosen it. Turn the cake out onto a cooling rack and after 20 minutes.

Once cool down wrap the cake in cling film and allow to cool completely this way. As it’s a rich chocolate cake the outside can dry quickly and harden (as chocolate tends to harden as they cool down), by wrapping the cake in cling film this will ensure the cake remains moist.

8. To serve, dust lightly with cocoa powder. I like to warm a slice of cake and have it with cold vanilla ice-cream or serve with a generous splash of Nutella or pouring cream straight on top. The warm and cold combination works wonders.

Sunday, 12 April 2015


Who can resist a slice of moist, frosting-topped carrot cake with a warming cup of tea? If you have time bake the cake a day before, I found the cake tastes even nicer.

This gorgeous cream cheese icing on the carrot cake is an absolute treat. It is light, moist and most enticingly delicious cake must find a good hiding place if you have any leftover..which is exactly what I have to do every time I bake this cake...otherwise it disappears as soon as the cake is sliced.

140 ml vegetable oil, plus extra for greasing – approx ¾ cup

2 eggs

200 g light brown sugar – approx 1.5 cups

300 g grated carrots, (grated weight) – approx 2 cups

100 g raisins

100 g pecans or walnuts, chopped (optional)

180 g self-raising flour – approx 2 cups

1 pinches salt

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

1/2 tsp mixed spice


For the orange cream cheese icing
250 g cream cheese, chilled

50 g butter, at room temperature

1 tsp vanilla extract

275 g icing sugar, sifted

1 orange, zest only
1.     Preheat the oven to 150C/gas 2. Oil and line a 24inche tin with greaseproof paper. (You may use two sandwich tins).
2.     Beat the eggs in a large bowl, then add the oil, brown sugar, grated carrot, raisins and chopped nuts (reserve some chopped nuts for decoration).
3.     Sift in the rest of the dry ingredients and bring the mixture together using a wooden or large metal spoon until well combined.
4.     Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf tin, smooth the surface and bake in the oven for 1 hour 15 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
5.       Remove from the oven and allow the cake to cool in the tin for about five minutes before removing. Cool completely on a wire rack before serving.
6.       Cut the cake across into two equal slices as seen in picture. Leave aside to further cool down.
If you can see the texture of the cake, it’s so moist......

For the icing: beat the cream cheese and butter together in a bowl until well combined. Add the vanilla extract, icing sugar and finely grated orange zest and mix until the icing is smooth and thick. Using a palette knife, spread the icing evenly over the cooled cake, dipping the knife into a bowl of hot water if the icing is hard to spread out.

8. Sprinkle the reserved nuts over the cheese icing. Cut into slices to serve.
Brinda’s Note:
You can decorate your cake as you wish either with just chopped mixed roasted nuts or sugared whole pecan nuts and decorate as illustrated in the pictures above. 


Saturday, 11 April 2015

Tray Bake Lemon Drizzle Cake

Lemon Drizzle Cake is one of my favourite Cakes…amongst many other cakes as you may have guessed. This cake has never disappointed me or anyone who has tasted it. It is moist with a crunchy topping that melts in the mouth, one bite and you would ask for more. To add more texture to the cake I have used a mixture of Semolina and flour in the mixture.


Ingredients  Makes 30 squares   

Preparation time: about 10 minutes
Cooking time: about 35-40 minutes

·      225g (8 oz) butter, softened

·      225g (8 oz) caster sugar

·      175g (10 oz) self-raising flour

·      100Gg coarse polenta

·      2 teaspoons baking powder

·      4 eggs

·      4 tablespoons milk

·      finely grated rind of 1lemon (you can use ½ lemon and ½ lime)

Lemon Topping

·      175g (6 oz) granulated sugar

·      juice of 1 lemon or lime


  1. Cut a rectangle of non-stick baking parchment to fit the base and sides of a traybake tin or roasting tin, 30 x 23 x 4 cm (12 x 9 x 1 ½ inches).
  2. Grease the tin and then line with the paper, pushing it neatly into the corners of the tin. Pre-heat the oven to 160°C/325°F/Gas 3.
  3. Sift the flour, semolina and baking powder together into a large bowl, leave aside.
  4. Place the softened butter and sugar into a large bowl and beat well for about 2 minutes until light, (an electric mixer is best for this but if you do not have an electric mixer you can also beat by hand with a wooden spoon).
  5. Add the egg one at a time into the mixture.
  6. Gradually fold in the flour and semolina mixture followed by the lemon rind. Add the milk one tablespoon at a time until you get a cake mix consistency.
  7. Turn the mixture into the prepared tin, level the top gently with the back of a spatula.
  8. Bake in the middle of the pre-heated oven for about 35-40 minutes or until the cake a spring back when pressed lightly and is beginning to shrink away from the sides of the tin. Alternatively a skewer inserted into the middle of the cakes comes out clean.  
  9. Allow the cake to cool in the tin for a few minutes then lift the cake out of the tin still in the lining paper. Carefully remove the paper and put the cake onto a wire rack placed over a tray (to catch drips of the topping).
  10. To make the topping, mix the lemon juice and granulated sugar in a small bowl to give a runny consistency. Spoon this mixture evenly over the tray bake cake while it is still just warm. Cut into about squares when cold.
Brinda’s Note:
The cake needs to be still warm when the topping is added so that it absorbs the lemon syrup easily, leaving the sugar on top. If the cake is too hot the syrup will tend to run straight through.



Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Mauritian “Chatini” Pomme d’Amour - (Tomato Chatini) or “Chutney” or Indian “Chatni”

Mauritian “Chatini” Pomme d’Amour -  (Tomato Chatini) or “Chutney” or Indian “Chatni”
“One would not believe one simple dish would have so many names”

(Vegetarian Vegan Herbs Accompaniment Wheat free Dairy Free Eggless)
Hello all you lovely people out there. Thank you for taking time to read my blog. 
I have chosen this recipe for my first blog and the reason is simply because this dish brings back lots of fond memories of two very special people in my life, my dear papa and my loving grandfather, my "tata" that's how I used to call my granddad. As I write my eyes is filling with tears as I miss them so much and of joy as I treasure their loving memories.
I don’t think that “Chatini”Pomme d’Amour (Tomato Salad or Salsa) needs an introduction, it has for long been a popular accompaniment of Mauritian cuisine. It accompanies almost all Mauritian dishes. Some people like it mild, some like it chilli hot.
As many of you know Mauritian Cuisine is very much a fusion of flavours of different continents, and so is our “Chatini”. Many people believe chutneys to be an English invention. In fact, the dish originates from Northern India. Indeed, the word 'chutney' itself is a derived from the Indian chatni which literally means 'to lick' and represents the lip-smacking sound made on eating something tasty (such as chutney is meant to be).
The basic chatni was brought back to Britain during the 18th Century where it was adapted as a way of preserving the surpluses resulting from the autumn harvest of fruits and vegetables. As a result the original recipes was adapted to become more of a spicy preserve or condiment where fruits or vegetables could be preserved over winter by cooking in vinegar and sugar and flavoured with spices before being bottled.
Typically, the original Indian Chatni is made from a mix of uncooked fruit (such as mangoes, apples, bananas etc), green chillies, green herbs and spices, vinegar and sometimes sugar ground together to make a paste. Indian and Mauritian Chatni are fresh and intended to be consumed soon after they are made.
Chatini Pomme d’Amour can be pureed or sliced/chopped tomatoes. The pureed one is very often used as a dip, for all the local snacks, samousa, “gateau bringel”, “gateau pomme de terre”, the list is long.

The addition of finely chopped lime or lemon in my Tomato Chatini is one I learn from my grandfather. It brings back memories of my childhood. As children when we visited my grandfather he would quickly rustle up chutney as an accompaniment dish. He added fresh tangy lime or lemon to the chutney which gave it a very fresh taste while reducing the hot chilli taste in the chutney. The aroma was enough to make one hungry.
Ingredients  Serves 4 -6
  • 4-5 Ripe Tomatoes
  • 1-2 green chilli
  • 1 medium size onion
  • Fresh coriander or basil (finely or coarsely chopped)
  • Olive oil
  • ½ Lime or lemon chopped
  • Salt to taste  
1.     Finely chop the tomato flesh and place in a serving bowl.
2.     Finely chop the chilli and rest of the other ingredients.
3.     Mix all together. Sprinkle with the olive oil.
4.      Season to taste. Sprinkle the chopped fresh coriander or basil.
Serving suggestions
Serve the tomato chutney at room temperature to accompany curry and rice dishes, Biryani or many other dishes