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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Tutti Frutti Cake

This festive season is never complete without a slice of Tutti Fruitti cake or a rich Fruit cake.

Tutti frutti is basically an Italian confection made with sliced fruit which has been candied or dried to preserve it. In Italian, “tutti frutti” means “all fruit, where a varied fruits like pineapple, papaya, mango, apricot, and grapefruit are used.
All of the fruits are diced fairly small and often brightly colored with various dyes to make it more visually appealing.

As far as I can remember, in my childhood days, there were some great bakeries in New Market like The Jewish confectioner "Nahoum's" and Imperial Cake shop.

Though curently there are several cake & bake shops in Kolkata, I still reminisce the drooling fruit cake, plum cake and rum balls of Nahoum's and it was a must to have them during the Christmas and New Year's time.

Here is the recipe of preparing a simple and easy Tutti Frutti Cake at home.

  • Refined Flour / Maida: 250 gms
  • Eggs: 5
  • Baking powder: 2 ½ tsp
  • Sugar, powdered: 250 gms
  • White butter: 250 gms
  • Tutti frutti, Raisins and Cashew Nuts (chopped): 1 cup
  • Vanilla essence: 2 tsp


  1. Preheat oven to 390 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease a 8" round baking cake tin with butter and dust it evenly with a little flour.
  2. Sift the flour and baking powder together, sieve thrice and keep aside.
  3. In a bowl, add butter and powdered sugar and cream them together till light and fluffy.
  4. Add one egg at a time and beat till well combined. Add vanilla essence.
  5. Add the flour gradually and fold to form a smooth cake mixture. (Do not over beat and combine the flour in one direction only).
  6. Sprinkle some flour over the tutti frutti to coat them, add them to the batter and fold gently into the batter. (Keep a little tutti frutti, raisins and chopped cashew aside to sprinkle on top).
  7. Spread batter evenly in the greased baking tin and sprinkle the remaining tutti frutti on the top.
  8. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 390 degrees F (200 degrees C) for 30-45 minutes or until done. (Test by pricking the cake with a tooth pick and if it comes out clean then the cake is done).
  9. Place on a wire rack to cool for 15 mins.
  10. Slice and treat yourself or your guests with tea / coffee.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Kashmiri Dum Aloo, Indian Cooking Challenge, Nov 2010

Traditional Kashmiri cuisine is characterized by the use of curds in the gravies, which gives the dishes a creamy consistency.

In Kashmir, potato is called 'Oluv' (Singular), and potatoes are called 'Olav' (Plural). 'Dama Oluv' is a poular North Indian cusine, having its origin in Kashmir.

Better known as Kashmiri Dum Aloo, it is an all time favourite and mouth watering potato based curry recipe, prepared with whole / diced baby potatoes simmered in a rich and creamy gravy.

The credit for the mouth watering and unique taste goes to the use of exquisite spices and ingredients. Dum means anything cooked under pressure. Here the aloo / potatoes are cooked under pressure in their own juices.

Kashmiri Dum Aloo recipe is generally flavored with Kashmiri chillies and it uses typical Kashmiri spices like fennel / aniseed and ginger powder. Kashmiri Dum Aloo is particularly served with naan or roomali roti.

Srivalli choose this dish as the recipe for Indian Cooking Challenge for the month of November. She choose the recipe of Kashmiri Aloo Dum from Indian food.


  • Baby potatoes / small potatoes - 1 kg (round and uniform size)

  • Cumin seeds, roasted and powdered: 1 tsp

  • Kashmiri red chillies, roasted and powdered: 3-4

  • Curd / yogurt: 2 1/2 cups (must not be sour)

  • Ginger powder: 1 tsp

  • Fennel / aniseed powder: 1 tbsp

  • Cloves, roasted and powdered: 6

  • Mustard oil: 4 tbsp

  • Garam Masala: 1 tsp

  • Mixed powders (Black cardamom, Cinnamon and Black Pepper): 1 tsp

  • Asafoetida: a pinch

  • White oil to deep fry potatoes

  • Salt to taste

  • Firm dough made from wheat flour and water Chopped coriander leaves: 1 tbsp

Method to prepare:

  1. Wash the potatoes well, peel, and prick the potatoes all over with a fork. Then soak in salted water for 15-20 mins.

  2. Heat white oil in a kadhai and fry the potatoes on medium flame on all sides till golden brown. Drain excess oil and keep aside.

  3. Make a paste of curd / yogurt, chilli powder, ginger powder and fennel powder. Add the potatoes and marinate for about an hour.

  4. Heat mustard oil in another kadhai, add the clove powder and asafoetida and mix well. Add a half cup of hot water with a little salt and bring to a boil.

  5. Slowly add the marinated potatoes and the yogurt mix and thoroughly stir to mix the spices.

  6. Cover with a lid, seal the edges with the dough for the ‘dum’ so that steam do not escape. Cook in a low flame for 10-15 mins.

  7. When the gravy thickens and the oil begins to separate, turn off the flame.

  8. Add garam masala, roasted cumin seeds powder and the mixture of cardamom, cinnamon and black pepper powders. Turn gently with a spatula so that all the spices are mixed well.

  9. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with Naan / Roomali Rotis / Chapatis.

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