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Let's get the red going...!!

Let's get the red going...!!

This is truly one of the best creative times of the year. Between Super Bowl, Valentine's, Grammy's and the Oscars, there are so many reasons to come together as an online community and celebrate. And, there is such an explosion of awesomeness that it really is very, very hard to not be swept by it all. Even if one is an institutionalized skeptic! 

Today, I have a matcha pudding for you, served as a trifle with lemon cookies. I have an interesting relationship with matcha. And, well, I suppose green tea in general.

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Apple Pie Brandy Pudding

Apple Pie Brandy Pudding

So! I am betting that this Apple Pie Pudding will go down in the anals of food history as an accident that was simply waiting to happen! And, when it did, brought greater joy than either pie or pudding could have in of themselves.

Here is what happened. I have been experimenting with different flours. Recently, I decided to test what wheat I am intolerant to. And, I have reading about how heritage strains of grain may not trigger the same issues as the mass produced, yield enhancing GMO versions. Einkorn has been one of those much talked about ancient wheat varietals that supposedly is less trigger happy than regular all purpose flour. The only problem is that it is more dense and less glutenous. Therefore, it because markedly unlike regular flour. Think, low rise and less flaky.

So, when I decided to make apple pie, using the regular pie recipe....


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A Pudding + Friday Links

Carrot Bread Pudding served

One day as I was walking past a restaurant by me, I spied a banana bread pudding on the brunch menu. Now, after reading Bourdain's book, I am not sure, I want to eat brunch out again. Nevertheless, the idea captivated. Here was a non-traditional bread being used for making a brunch staple. Indeed, it was really cake being used. It makes in the way that American bread pudding is most often made with challah, brioche or other small crumbed, sweet and eggy bread.

Now, I liked the concept but clearly did not want to copy it. So I decided to change the base and add a few bells and whistles and call it my own. I have to caveat that I am NOT a bread pudding person. Rarely, have I come across one that is light and airy and most often I take eggs more than anything else in them. And, that is not the way I want to end the meal. Since then, I have had the fortune of indulging on a croissant pudding at the Old Ebbit Grill in DC and that was divine! I must recreate that soon. It had the perfect balance of soft and cakey with a little crunch (the croissant flakes I presume) while obviously enough egg had been added to hold it all together. It was most definitely not eggy.

Now that has become the hallmark for my attempts at making pudding. The quest to find just he right ratios. Less egg more milk yet still pudding.

Carrot Bread Pudding
Carrot Bread Pudding for you
Berry Coulis
Carrot Bread Pudding ingredients

I decided to play with

this carrot bread

. Since the bread was already sweet, I did not have to use more sugar in milk mixture. Also, I used a small egg. I get eggs from the farm and they come in varying sizes in a box. I just chose the smallest of the lot. Btw, as an aside, have you ever gotten a double yolk egg? It isn't common in the industrial eggs but I hear quite an occurrence when you procure from a normal farm.

So, well, that's really it to it. I used more soakage liquid and then let is settle in overnight and then baked it to a light crumb. This one was actually light but not light enough. A good enough back up. But, I intend to keep testing more. It has become an obsession I think. oh well!

I served with delicious fresh cream and a berry coulis made from frozen mix of berries and unsweetened with any added sugars.

Carrot Bread Pudding out of oven

Meanwhile, I leave you with this recipe and a few links of interesting reads.


is what I have been yelling about all along! :)

Another pudding recipe

, just because!

Cannot to lay my hands on tomatoes like



This bay leaf cake

is my list to make, after I made my

first pound cake


Carrot Bread Pudding served

Somewhat cool and




coffee shop

opening in Grand Central. I hope they plan for proper baristas. The last one is an epic fail!

A new found


I am loving.

I really, really, want to go


. Soon.


is my spiritual guide, of sorts!

I find it hard to believe that we have grown to be

so glued to phones

. Oh well!

Carrot Bread Pudding

{serves 4}

Carrot Bread Pudding

6 slices of

this carrot bread

1 egg

1/4 cup brandied raisins, drained

1 cup whole milk or almond milk

1 tsp grated nutmeg

1 T raw sugar

1/2 tsp salt

To serve,

Whipped cream

Berry Coulis

1 cup thawed frozen berries

1/2 cup water

To make the coulis, bring the berries and water to a boil. Then simmer for 5 or so minutes until the sauce has thickened a little.

Arrange the slices of bread tightly in a baking dish. Warm the milk to melt the sugar. Whisk in the egg and nutmeg quickly. Fold in the raisins.

Pour the milk mixture over the cake slices. Gently press down so the crust get to soak in the liquid as well.

Refrigerate at least four hours or overnight. At this point, nearly all of the liquid should have been soaked through. If it looks a little dry, pour some milk over to moisten.

Prep the oven to 400F.

Bake the pudding for 20 minutes until the liquid is just set.

Cool for a few minutes and serve with berry coulis and cream.

Ravo - Parsi Semolina Pudding


Some days in the year are happier than others... some days, more fun... some days, sweeter... this is one of those days..

On any occasion that is to be celebrated, the day starts with a bite of sweet... Ravo is a Parsi sweet dish that is traditionally served as breakfast on "good" days.. birthdays and such... but it's too comforting and smile-inducing to be relegated to just those.. :)

On any day that I feel like being happy, I start with a bit of this sweet..

Ravo 1

Ravo (Parsi Semolina Pudding)

1 cup super fine semolina
3/4 cup part sugar
2 cups hot milk
pinch of saffron
5T + 2T ghee (clarified brown butter)
1/4 cup assorted nuts and raisins for garnish

Add the saffron to the hot milk and set aside to steep. In a wide, heavy bottomed vessel, melt 4 tablespoons of ghee over low heat. Slowly pour the semolina and gently toast until the raw smell leaves, about 3 minutes. Add the sugar and toss for another 3-4 minutes.

Pour the milk into the mixture, while continously whisking to prevent lumps. Keep stirring until the mixture thickens to a consistency of grits. Remove from flame and stir in the remaining tablespoon of ghee.

As the semolina cooks, heat a heavy bottomed frying pan on low heat and melt 2 tablespoons of ghee. Add the nuts and lightly toast them and set aside.

To serve, ladle out the pudding in bowls and top with the toasted nuts.

Thanksgiving Special: Drunken Bread Pudding with Homemade Pumpkin Challah

Pumpkin Bread Pudding

My! Is that a pumpkinilicious bite or what?! Well, you may have guessed the reason for this pumpkin indulgence. Yes, this was the slated round 8 dish for Project Food Blog. I made this dish last Friday. As I removed the pudding from the oven, I found out that it was no longer needed!

I gobbled a generous slice to drown my disappointment, right then. After that, the world seemed sunnier and I smiled again. In the FSK household, there is nothing like not needed as far as food is concerned. All good food is welcome and will be consumed at the hastiest! :) Mr. FSK was bummed for me, but, glad I had made the pudding before the results came out. LOL.

Eggs and Milk

Of course, the post was going to make it here, anyway, contest or not. Then, I had a bright idea. What if a bunch of us, who were dreaming pumpkins for the contest but could no longer enter our creation, posted our recipes anyway, in unity?! I mean, like the Pumpkin Crusaders?! Cool, eh? Oh, yeah! Liren and I cohorted to rope in some cool bloggers and fellow contestants whose end, like ours, came too soon. :)

So, what would have been my entry? A homemade Pumpkin Challah, which, is then baked into a Drunken Bread Pudding, spiked with brandied fruits and baked in a pumpkin custard!

Now, my reasons for choosing this particular mode of delivering the pumpkin were simple. I love to bake bread at home and that was one skill I hadn't yet showcased in the contest. Plus, the challah has always been an aspiration; those braids are just too inviting.

Pumpkin Bread Pudding

When I was a kid, with longer tresses, I used to braid my hair for school; two tiny braids on either side, tied with a ribbon. I love braiding; kind of therapeutic, like kneading. So, it felt right. And, the richness of the bread from the egg, makes it just perfect for the Holidays - Thanksgiving, Hannukah, Christmas....

The recipe I used was a very simple one and I could not believe that such amazing bread could be made with so little effort! Once the bread was baked, I just couldn't stop eyeing it's simple gorgeousness; the shape and the entrancing golden crust. I almost did not want to go through with the pudding. I did not want to slice the best looking bread, I had ever baked. But, then, the show must go on! :)

Pumpkin challah

My next challenge was the pudding. Ok, I confess! I had never had much success with bread puddings before this attempt!! And, the secret to this one lies in using toasted bread and baking the pudding in a water bath, like you would a custard. In keeping with the season, I spiked the pudding with dried fruits that I had soaked in brandy for a month. Ah! the flavors they infused into the pudding - boozy, rich and dvine!

For serving, I tried many accessories; fresh fruits, chocolate mascarpone mousse and just simply dusted with sugar. In honesty, the last was the best. The pudding holds its own; no garnish needed!

Pu Bread Pudding 1

For more pumpkin ideas, check out my recipes here.

Now, I highly recommended that you go, check out what awesomeness, others have created...

Liren from Kitchen Confidante
Josie from Day Dreamer Desserts
Lindsey from Hot Polka Dot
Winnie from Healthy Green Kitchen

Drunken Pumpkin Bread Pudding
(adapted from
Joy of Baking)

2 cups of challah, diced (recipe below)
1 egg
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup half and half or light cream
1/3 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 tsp nutmeg
3 T brandied fruits (raisins, cranberries, plums)
1/2 tsp vanilla paste
1 T melted and cooled butter + another for toasting the bread

Toss the bread in a tablespoon of butter with the nutmeg, arrange on a baking sheet and bake at 375 F for about 10 minutes until toasted and golden brown.

Meanwhile, prepare the custard. Beat the egg and sugar until light colored and thick. Add the vanilla and mix in thoroughly. Add the melter butter, cream and pumpkin puree and combine to a creamy mixture.

When the bread is ready, toss it with the brandied fruits and arrange in a small loaf pan. Pour the custard mixture over the bread. Gently press the bread pieces in so they soak up some of the custard. Set aside for 5 minutes.

Place the pan in a larger roasting pan. Fill the larger pan with hot water rising half way up the sides of the pudding pan. Bake for about 50 minutes to an hour, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Pumpkin Challah
{adapted from A Blessing of Bread by Maggie Glezer via
My Jewish Learning}
(makes 2 loaves)

1 package active dry yeast
2/3 cup warm water
3/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoons fresh nutmeg
3-1/4 + 1/2 cups unbleached flour
scant 1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup fresh pumpkin puree
1/4 cup canola oil
1 egg + 1 egg, beaten for glaze
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
Cornmeal (optional)

Sprinkle yeast over warm water with a teaspoon of sugar and let stand for 10 minutes until foamy. Stir to dissolve. Meanwhile, mix 3-1/4 cups of flour, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large bowl. Make a well in the center and pour in yeast mixture. Slowly, incorporate some of the flour into the water, just enough to form a soft paste. There will be quite a bit of dry flour around the edges Cover bowl with a towel and leave until frothy and risen, about 20 minutes.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the sugar, pumpkin puree, oil and egg. Add to the risen flour mixture and combine thoroughly. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5-10 minutes until the dough is pliable. The dough will be wet. Add the reserved 1/2 cup of flour a little at a time till you get a smooth, tacky dough.

Let the dough rest for a few minutes and then transfer to a lightly bowl. Brush the top of the dough with a little oil, cover with a towel and let it rise in a warm place till it triples in volume, about 1-1/2 hours. Punch down dough, knead it lightly, and cut it into two equal pieces. Cut each of the two pieces into three equal pieces. Roll each piece into a straight rope. Braid three ropes together and repeat to get two braided loaves.

Line baking sheets with parchment paper and sprinkle a little corn meal/semolina. Place loaves on the sheets, cover with towel and let rise until doubled in size. Glaze loaves with beaten egg reserved for glaze. Bake at 350 F for about 17-20 minutes, or until golden brown.

Cool on rack and let it come to room temperature before slicing it.

I am sending this bread to our friendly Yeastspotting Susan! :)

Share your creations tagging @ashafsk on Instagram and hashtag #MadeFromFSK