Does it sing a song? :D

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Just finished baking this music-themed birthday cake for a friend’s daughter who turns 11. The instructions from the birthday girl were simple .. “I don’t want a girly cake!” .. :D … Well, hope this is grown up enough for you Hiba! As for whether it sings a song? Well, we’ll just have to wait and see ;) … Ahh, I love birthdays!

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It’s baking hot in Dubai!

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It’s baking hot in Dubai these days thanks to the fast-approaching summer! So I knew my next venture had to be ice-cream related. And when I think ice-cream I automatically think brownies … So today seemed like the perfect time to put to test an interesting brownie cups idea I came across on Pinterest a few days ago … Therefore, today I have for you ‘Ice-cream in Brownie Cups’. I promise this isn’t as tricky as I thought it would be, so don’t be afraid to try it out. The trick is to form the cup shape as soon as the brownies are out of the oven and still warm. There was a point where I thought I screwed up as the brownies seemed to be stuck to the muffin tray.(although I had greased it quite well). But running a butterknife around the edges of the brownie cups seemed to do the trick and they came out of the tray quite easily after that.

Ice Cream in Brownie Cups

Ice Cream in Brownie Cups

I always say baking is easy, but taking pics of it is an entirely different story. Dealing with ice cream today made it even harder as I had to be real quick in getting the lighting and arrangement right. So the ice-cream scoop may not seem as perfectly rounded as it was when I brought it out in the lounge, but oh well, you get the idea! Time to go have one now before it turns into milkshake … hmmmm, now there’s another idea! I wonder if blending it with milk would end up tasting like the amazing ‘black forest’ milkshake at Johnny Rockets! I’ll leave that thought for a future failed baking experiement. In the meantime, here’s the recipe for todays brownies:  Read the rest of this entry

Adios weekend!

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Time to share a quick dinner recipe now, before the weekend is over and we face the dreading task of what to wear to work tomorrow! So today, I have for you Chicken Pasta with veggies! It’s pretty simple to prepare and more or less a case of tossing chicken with your fave veggies! Recipe added below but I have not mentioned the quantity as that is pretty much down to your taste. But basic method I use has been explained…

Chicken Pasta with Veggies

Boil water (enough to cover the pasta shells) with a few drops of oil and salt. When water starts to boil, add the pasta shells and let it boil. When the pasta shells have softened, drain them out in a strainer and run cold water over it. Doing so, will also prevent the pasta shells from sticking.

Meanwhile, in a wok heat a little oil,add and sautee your choice of veggies (I used green pepper, mushrooms,onions and sweet corn). Add the chicken strips and season with salt, black pepper and ginger garlic paste. When the chicken has cooked a lil, add bolognese sauce (or any pasta sauce of your choice). Toss and turn to make sure sauce mixes well with the other ingredients. Add the boiled pasta shells to the dish and mix well…. Ta daa! Your chicken pasta with veggies is ready! Garnish with herbs before serving. :)

Bon Appetit!

A simple weekend cake!

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Looking for a simple cake recipe for the weekend? Then you should try out this Chocolate Chip Cake I baked yesterday. I made the most of whatever ingredients I had available at home, but to help your cake stand out more, I would suggest you use white chocolate curls as well as the dark one to help the cake decor stand out more. Plus, you will have enough icing left to pipe around the bottom of the cake as well to give it a complete look. Unfortunately I was out of piping bag yesterday, so couldn’t really work much on the look of the cake … oh well, it tasted good enough to share with all of you regardless of the look! Time to go do some baking shopping now …. Have a fun weekend everyone! :)

Chocolate Chip Cake

Ingredients for the cake:
Unsalted butter (at room temperature): 226 grams
All Purpose Flour (sifted): 3 cups
Caster Sugar: 1 cup
Egg whites: 4
Butter milk: 1 and 1/2 cup
Baking Powder: 2 and 1/2 tsp
Chocolate Chips: 2/3 cups

Ingredients for the icing:
Whipping cream: 2/3 cups
Icing Sugar: 1 + 1/3 cup
Chocolate chips: 1 cup + 1/3 cup Read the rest of this entry

Time to tickle those taste buds!

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And I’m back!! How’s it going everyone? Apologies for the silent treatment the last few weeks, but had family and friends visiting recently and I went into complete lazy mode after they left. My friends have been nagging me the whole time to get back on baking track but I just wasn’t finding that inspiration anywhere to snap out of this phase … that was up until I came across a brilliant cafe yesterday that did the trick and made me want to bake again …

I’m referring to Spontiphoria Cafe on Wasl Square in Dubai. This cafe was truly love at first sight for me .. it was very bright and welcoming, and had such a cosy set up and ‘feel good’ factor, it almost felt like walking into the brightest room of your house! Spontiphoria is the first of its kind in Dubai as it’s actually a boutique as well a bakery. I was there to attend a Basic Baking Demo session yesterday which my friend had luckily signed me up for (and will probably expect baked goodies in return now as a thank you). I was greeted by the friendly owner, Sidiqa Sohail, and it was great to speak to someone who also has a strong passion for baking and had come such a long way to set up a wonderful cafe that had obviously become a crowd favourite by many.

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As I waited for the demo to start, I flicked through the menu which was an absolute treat! They have so much to offer be it breakfast, snacks or simply desserts. The sandwiches they offer as snacks looked quite interesting as they were named after different cities worldwide. They served mini chutney sandwiches as the nibbles during the demo, and they were absolutely delicious! Definitely ordering those again when I visit next. But the part that stood out for me the most, was the section named ‘Dessert as meals!’ … and I do not joke, when I say there was a ‘Chocolate Burger’ on that menu as well! Now that is a dream come true for chocoholics like me! But as I was there for the demo, I had to behave, and decided to save digging in to all the wonderful treats at Spontiphoria for my next visit. It didn’t stop me from tasting their best seller ‘Salted Caramel Brownies’ though …. yummylicious!

The baking demo in itself was very informative. It was a good turnout, and everyone absolutely loved icing their own mini cupcakes towards the end. Spontiphoria does host many events throughout the year, so make sure you visit their Facebook page www.facebook.com/spontiphoria to keep track of it all.

My overall experience at Spontiphoria was an excellent one! I’ve always had a soft corner for cafe’s with the ‘home-made’ feel to it, and Spontiphoria definitely ticks that box. I’ve already made plans with friends to visit Spontiphoria again soon and will keep you posted on all the new goodies I try out. In the meantime, make sure you make your way there too and you’ll see what I meant about the ‘feel good’ factor.

Thank you Spontiphoria team for the wonderful experience!