My 150th post..Black Forest cake (Eggless)

Happy to post my 150th blog post "Black forest cake" .:-)).. This needs no introduction..Just the name itself, takes one back to memories of so many special events of life.. 

This cake originates from the Schwarzwalder (meaning Black Forest) region in Germany, a serenely beautiful place covered by thick vegetation one of its own kind created by mother nature. Also it has been the source of inspiration for some great poets, artists and play writers across Europe
Thanks to my friend Pooja Baliga who motivated me to make this cake.She also shared some links from Recipesecrets and Easycooking which really helped me in making this..

1. Ingredients:
Maida/ cake flour ........225 gms
unsalted butter.............125 gms
cocoa powder..............4 full tablespoon
baking powder.............1 teaspoon
baking soda..................1 teaspoon
aerated cola..................200 ml (Pepsi or coke zero)
sweetened condensed milk.....400 ml/ 1 can

  • pre-heat oven to 160  degree C
  • Grease an 8 inch baking pan ( I used steel cooker vessel ). Place a round wax/butter paper at the bottom of the pan
  • take butter in a mixing bowl. Microwave or heat on stove only till it melts. Let it cool
  • Add condensed milk n beat well till a smooth silky mixture is obtained
  • Sift together Maida, baking powder, baking soda and cocoa powder. keep aside
  • Add the sifted flour mix to the milkmaid- butter mixture alternating with cola till flour and cola mixture are finished
  • Mix the mixture well preferably with a hand mixer, make the mixture lump free
  • Pour into the greased baking pan, bake for 35 mins or till the toothpick inserted comes out clean 
  • Carefully take out the cake and cool on a wire rack

2.Preparing the frosting/Whipped cream 
Heavy whipping cream.....300 ml
sugar ...............................4-5 tablespoons
vanilla essence..................1tspn

Keep the cream and the whipping blades in freezer for 40 mins(very important)
Add sugar and essence to the chilled cream and whip till soft stiff peaks are obtained
Keep refrigerated until use

3. Preparing the Sugar syrup
The soft testure in this cake is brought about by cherry syrup or sugar syrup that is sprinkled on the cake before applying the frosting.

water........1 cup
sugar........1 cup
In a thick bottom pan mix sugar and water. boil till sugar melts. let it cool 

4. For Garnishing 
Cherry...............1 tin (fresh or stored)
some finest chocolate bars : make chocolate shavings/ available in stores

5.Assembling tthe cake
  • Cut the cake into 3 layers horizontally
  • Place the 1st layer on a easy to rotate plate
  • sprinkle 7-8 tbspns of sugar syrup, enough to cover the entire cake surface
  • spread a ladle full of whipped cream on top of the cake
  • Add sufficient chopped cherries on top of it.Cherry jam can also be used (add some more cherries)
  • Place the 2nd layer on top of this
  • again sprinkle sufficient sugar syrup and repeat the process
  • Place the 3rd layer and cover the cake completely with whipped cream 
  • level the cream with a long knife or spatula on top n side
  • Decorate the cake the way you like with choco shavings, choco chips, cherries and cream etc
  • Keep it refrigerated

Baked Samosa ( no deepfrying, no using Puff pastry sheets)

Can't imagine Samosas without frying in oil right !! Check out my version of baked samosas, without deep frying in oil also not using the greasy buttery puff pastry sheets..Just bake it for about 20 mins and eat hot with tangy tamarind sauce. Weight watchers can have 1 2 or 3 samosa without feeling guilty !!:))

Ingredients for the stuffings:
Oil                                     : 3 tbspn
carrom seeds                     : 1/2 tbspn
Garlic minced                    : 1 tbspn
fresh/frozen green peas     : 1/2 cup
potatoes, boiled n mashed : 500 gm

Dry Masala powders:
Salt                         : 1tbspn or to Taste
coriander powder   : 1/2 tspn
jeera powder           : 1/2 tspn
turmeric                  : 1/4 tspn
garam masala pwdr : 1/2 tspn
red Chilli powder    : 1 tspn
aamchur powder     : 1/2 tspn

  • boil the potatoes, peel n keep aside
  • Heat some oil in a griddle
  • when hot add carom seeds/ ajwain and minced Garlic . After few seconds add in the green peas. sauté until they cook well. then add all the dry powder
  • stir them all in oil for a while, transfer the mashed potatoes n mix well
  • add more salt, chilli powder n aamchur if desired

Procedere for samosas:
  • Take a frozen ready to eat paranthas (any brand), thaw sightly to make it soft and divide it into 2 equal parts with a knife. I used this, whole wheat Methi parathas

  • Line the edges of paranthas with just a little water
  • Place sufficeint amount of potato mixture near one end and fold the other end. seal the edges tightly

  • another variation, smear some tamarind sauce or dates tamarind chutney on the base before adding the potato mixture
  • preheat the oven to 200 degree C (around 400 degree F) for 10 mins.
  • Place an aluminium sheet in an oven tray, smear with few drops of oil n place the samosa

  • Bake for about 25 mins or till it turn brown and crispy

  • Here is the outcome..


  • Along with potatoes, you can add a lot of vegetables like capsicum, beans and carrots to make it still more healthier

Sago pearls in Palmsugar caramel

 Sipping a cool delicious drink is a great way to enjoy a summer day. It can be anything, from a fresh fruit juice to exotic squash, punch, cocktails or even mock-tails 
Sago pearls in caramelised palm sugar is rich, luscious creamy dessert/drink usually served chilled. An excellent way to beat the summer heat.
This drink reminds memories of my childhood days when my granny used to prepare it during our summer vacations where, after playing in the hot sun, we were often fed with this cool refreshing drink and also sometimes Ragi majjige and Kokum sharabat. But the way she prepared sago drink was much simpler, just with 3 ingredients: sago, coconut and jaggery
So friends, lets beat the summer with this deli-coolicious drink guaranteed to cool you off !!!

Ingredients for sago pearls:
Sago pearls              :150 gm
water                      : about 2 ltrs
salt                          : 1/4 tspn
Coconut milk           : 100 ml

Ingredients for Palm sugar caramel:
palm sugar(Jaggery)  : 100gm 
cream                       : 200 ml
butter(optional)        : 40 gm

  • Make the palm sugar caramel by combining palm sugar or jaggery, cream and butter in a small saucepan stirring continuously until the sugar dissolves to form a silky sauce. continue to boil until thickened.(I did not add butter). If required, strain through a sieve and keep aside

  • To prepare the sago pearls, first soak it in water for about 20 mins.then put a very large pot of water for boiling with little salt, Add the pearls into it and keep stirring for 15-20 mins until the pearls turn transparent. Ensure that it does not stick to the base of vessel
  • Drain the sago through a sieve and cool it by running cold water through it
  • Then take some required quantity of these cooled sago pearls in a mixing bowl. Add the coconut milk and few tablespoons of palm sugar caramel, until desired sweetness
  • serve chilled

  • use a large vessel or pot to boil the sago so that it does not stick to the bottom
  • try to use jaggery that is odourless 
  • along with coconut milk, normal milk can also be added 
  • salt is very much required as it gives that perfect tinge of taste  with jaggery and coconut milk
Makes : 4 glass
Preparation time : 30 mins


Greek Salad

Greek Salad is one of the most popular n healthy salad you can have throughout the year. Although this salad is ideal for summer lunch, it could be prepared in any occasion in whatever version you find good. Juicy vine ripened tomatoes are the key

Cherry tomatoes, diced..................2 cup
Cucumber peeled n diced............... 2 cup
Olives, slit..................................1 cup
Greek Feta cheese, cubed...............1 cup
red onion, thinly sliced...................1 small
Dried or fresh basil leaves ..............2 tbspn or more
Greek extra virgin olive oil.............1/3 cup
dried oregano..............................2 tspns
salt............................................very little
lemon juice/vinegar.......................few drops

  • Cut all the vegetables and place them in a large serving bowl
  • Season with dried oregano, basil and salt
  • Mix all the ingredients in the serving bowl
  • Lastly sprinkle the olive oil
  • beautiful, cooling, fresh Greek salad is ready to serve

  • This salad taste best if you mix it up and let it sit for an hour so that the flavours mingle well, however optional
  • Usually Kalamata (calamon) olives are used because of their excellent fruity flavour
  • Lettuce leaves, bell pepper can also be added
  • 1 minced garlic can also be added depending on the choice n flavour
Preparation time: 10 mins
serves 4

Mackerel shallow fry

For marination:
3 Mackerel slit from the center
2 tbspn tamarind paste
5-6 big cloves of garlic crushed /paste
2-3 tbspn of red chilly
1/2 tspn turmeric powder
1/2 tspn hing powder/Asafoedita
1 tbspn salt or to taste 
oil for shallow frying
1 small cup unroasted rava/sooji/semolina for frying

  • Wash the fish nicely under running water for 3-4 times
  • Hold the fish firmly and chop off the head part and make a slit from the centre to pull the flesh apart.
  • In a small bowl prepare the marination mixture by adding salt, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, tamarind paste, garlic paste. Mix well by adding 1/4th cup water
  • Apply the paste evenly to the fish on both the sides. Keep aside for at least 15 mins
  • Now take some rava/sooji in plate, add hing powder, a pinch of salt, mix all
  • Coat each fish evenly with rava n fry it on pan . add oil for frying. Fry on both sides till nice golden brown colour appears

Preparation time: 30 mins
cooking time: 30 mins

Cream of Asparagus soup

Asparagus not only tastes delicious, but is also a wonderful source of nutrients for a healthy body and mind. Being low in calorie, it contains many anti inflammatory nutrients, rich source of vitamin A, C and K. A good antioxidant which helps reduce ageing process naturally making you look younger. Besides, it also prevents birth defects by preventing folate deficiency

Asparagus           : 6 tender shoots trimmed and cut into 1      inch pieces
onion, chopped   : 1 big
garlic, minced     : 2 cloves
chicken stock      : 1 cube
butter                    : 1 tbspn
ground black 
pepper                 : 1/2 tspn or more
salt                       : to taste
milk                      :1 cup
fresh cream        : 1/2 cup or more

Method :
  • Dilute the a cube of chicken stock in a bowl of hot water
  • Cover and cook the chopped onions and asparagus pieces with half the stock solution till tender (takes about 8 mins on medium heat)simmer until asparagus is tender

  • cool n grind to a smooth paste
  • in the same pan heat butter. add pepper n minced garlic . Sauté for a minute
  • add the remaining stock solution and bring to boil
  • Pour the ground paste and boil
  • lastly add in milk. turn off heat as soon as it just starts to boil
  • stir in a ladleful of hot soup in serving bowl and top some cream over it
  • Cream of Asparagus soup served with roasted asparagus

Cooking time : 15 mins
Serves : 4 bowl

Potato finger chips

potatoes               : 2
red chilli powder  : 1 tbspn
salt                      : to taste
turmeric powder  :1/2 tbspn
garlic, crushed     : 5-6 
oil                       :4-5 tbspn
mustard seeds      :1 tspn

  • Slice the potatoes in long stripes
  • mix salt, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, crushed garlic  and keep aside for about 15 mins

  • Then take some oil in non stick pan, add mustard seeds, wait till it splutters.
  • add the potatoes, put the lid on. keep stirring occasionally on medium heat

  • after the potatoes are cook completely, take off the lid. keep stirring on medium to high heat till they turn crispy

Cooking time: 20 mins


  • Cook in non stick cookware only 
  • Bell pepper can also done in the similar way

Similar tasty preparations

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