Cream Filled Donuts (eggless – of course!)

 

Tuesday was Valentine’s Day, so of course, I decided to make something special.  My husband has been begging me to make donuts forever, so I thought I’d surprise him with these beauties.  Heart shaped, filled with custard cream, glazed, and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar.  What could be more romantic than heart shaped donuts?  The donut recipe vegetarian-ized version of a basic yeast donut.  The cream filling is my own invention.  Hey, Singh jee doesn’t like chocolate, so I had to jazz it up somehow.  :)

No keertan today, we’re doing paath instead.  What better shabad to express love than Shabad Hazaare?  Bhai Pritam Singh Anjaan does it with such love…  watch out, you might just cry!

Donuts:

  • 3/4 cup scalded milk
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 4 Tablespoons finely ground flax seed + 6 Tablespoons warm water, mixed well and allowed to sit for 10 minutes
  • oil for deep frying
  • cinnamon sugar for sprinkling

Custard filling:

  • 2 tablespoon Bird’s custard powder
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup chilled whipped cream (just beat heavy cream with a whisk until it becomes stiff, don’t buy the canned stuff)

Glaze:

  • 2 cups icing (powdered) sugar.
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • 3 tablespoons sugar

 

First, make the custard, it’ll need to chill in the fridge for a while.  Mix the custard powder and sugar with 1/4 cup of the milk and mix it really well.  It should make a kind of paste.  Heat the other 1 1/4 cup of milk until almost boiling.  Pour the hot milk into the paste, mixing vigorously the whole time to avoid lumps.  Put it back on the stove and heat again until thick (but not boiling).  Remove from the stove and chill.  When it’s cool, mix it with the whipped cream and keep it in the fridge until the donuts are done.

Now for the donuts…  In a medium bowl, stir together the scalded milk, sugar, and salt. Set aside to cool. Stir cinnamon into the flour, and add 2 cups of the mixture to the milk, and beat until well blended.In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast in warm water, allowing to sit until a foam forms on top.  Stir into the milk and flour mixture, then mix in the butter and flax seed mixture. Mix in the remaining flour 1/2 cup at a time as needed to make a soft dough. When dough is firm enough, turn it out onto a floured surface, and knead for 3 to 4 minutes. Place into an oiled bowl, cover and allow dough to rise until doubled in bulk. This should take 30 to 45 minutes.On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to 1/2 inch in thickness. Cut into desired shape using a cookie cutter.  Set aside to rise for 30 to 40 minutes, or until light and fluffy looking.Heat one inch of oil in a deep heavy frying pan to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Fry donuts a few at a time. Cook on each side until golden brown, then remove to drain on paper towels. Be careful, they get dark quickly.  When they’re cool enough to handle, you need to squeeze the custard into the donut through a small hole in the bottom.  There are two ways to do this.  You can use a pastry bag with a long narrow tip (called a bismarck tip).  These kits cost about $10.  Or, you can do it the cheap way, like I did.  You can purchase a plastic condiment bottle for less than a dollar at Walmart.  Fill it with custard, poke the tip into the bottom of the donut, and squeeze the filling into the donut.  When it starts to come out the hole, you’re done.  To make the glaze, just mix the sugar, milk, and butter together until smooth.  Now dip the donut into the glaze and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

Congratulations, you just made donuts!

 

Eggless French Toast

Sometimes you just have to have breakfast for dinner.  I’ve been craving french toast for a while now, but wasn’t sure how to make it.  I didn’t want to make a mess and waste my favorite white batter bread on something if it wasn’t going to be perfect.  I started to do some research and it seems there are about a million different recipes for vegetarian french toast.  I mixed and matched from a couple of them and this is what I came up with.  It’s pretty darned good, if I do say so myself.

Recommended keertan:  Bhai  Avtar Singh and Bhai Gurcharan Singh- Gur Satgur Kaa Jo Akhaae

  • 8 slices of almost stale bread
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 3 Tbs besan (chick pea flour)
  • 2 Tbs Bird’s custard powder (or you can use plain cornstarch)
  • 2 Tbs maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • oil or butter for the skillet

This one’s easy, just mix everything together really well.  Add the dry ingredients slowly or it’ll be lumpy. Stir and stir and stir some more.   You need dry bread for this, so let it sit out overnight or use old bread or if you don’t have old bread, you can put it in a 250 degree oven for 8 minutes to dry it out a bit.  Dip the bread in the mixture and fry on an oiled skillet for a minute or two on each side, till it’s nice and brown.  Serve with syrup or powdered sugar or jam, whatever suits your taste.

 

 

 

 

 

Full of Awesome Banana Muffins

 

That’s right, these muffins are full of awesome.  And full of other stuff too.  Whatever I had in the pantry, to be precise.  They’re based on my favorite banana bread recipe.  I was reading through the comments and so many of the suggestions sounded great, I used a couple of them, and added my own touch as well.  I added a streusel topping because I love that little bit of sugary crunchy goodness.   The original recipe is for bread, and this recipe can also be baked in a 4×8 loaf pan or an 8″ round pan, if you’d prefer a cake.  I like muffins because they’re exactly one serving size and they’re portable.  We take them as snacks when we’re travelling.
Full of awesome” is a catchy phrase I picked up from my favorite girl-power blog and entrepreneur- Pigtail Pals – Redefine Girly.   It’s all about how kids so easily choose to be full of awesome, letting their light shine.  And about how we sometimes lose it when we grow up.  And so I’ve decided to take back my awesome, in every little way possible.  As a woman, as a mom, as a cook, as a singhnee.  I’m taking back my awesome, and I’m sharing it with you.

Recommended keertan:  Bhai Ranjit Singh (Jammu)- Delhi Samagam 2009

  • 3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tbs plain yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom (elaichee)
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped nuts (I used cashews here)
For the topping:
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom powder
  • 2 Tbs cold butter, cut into pieces

Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).  With a wooden spoon, mix melted butter into the mashed bananas in a large mixing bowl.  Mix in the sugar, yogurt, and vanilla.  Sprinkle the baking soda, salt, and cardamom over the mixture and mix in.  Add the flour, stir well, but don’t over mix. Stir in the coconut, raisins, and nuts last.  Spoon the mixture into prepared muffin pan (use paper liners for less mess).  To make the topping, mix all the ingredients in a food processor until it’s crumbly.  Sprinkle on top of the muffin batter.  Bake for 30 minutes. If you’re making bread, bake for one hour. Cake will be about 45 minutes (but keep an eye on it). Cool on a rack.