Thursday, July 30, 2015

Vegan Mango cake

What's summer without relishing on the mangoes....words are not quite enough. It takes you to your childhood memories - eating ripe mangoes with curd rice...many of you will definitely agree with me that it's a lunch box favorite. Mangoes are very versatile - can make pickles with tender ones, the mature ones - eat raw or pickles or can include that in many gravies and rice. Coming to the ripe ones - they are the best. Also there are lots of varieties each with its own unique flavor and aroma. Eating them in all possible ways all through the summer with family friends.....also climbing trees with them, picking and enjoying those in your backyard - nostalgic. These thoughts just bring a big smile.

We have been enjoying lots of mangoes this season again. And now, it is almost the end of mangoes. For the past two years, I have made mango cake and this recipe is a keeper. I always take a long time to prepare for this cake....can you guess? Yes, I was chopping mangoes for a long time. Not because of the quantity needed. It's because each and every yummy piece was finding a perfect path to our tummies. All of us enjoyed the moment. Finally, somehow kept aside a little to bake the cake. This is my best mango cake in the past few years and this time I made a bundt cake.


Maida / APF - 1 and 1/2 cups
Brown sugar or granulated white sugar - 3/4 cup
Baking soda - 1 tsp
Baking powder - 1 and 1/2 tsp
Vanilla - 1 tsp
Apple cider vinegar - 1 tbsp
Flaxseed powder - 2 tbsp
Coconut milk  - 1/2 cup
Mango puree- 1 and 1/2 cups(from fresh mangoes)
Oil - 1/4 cup


Preheat the oven to 180C.

In a bowl, add maida, baking powder, baking soda, and mix. Make a flax egg with flax powder and coconut milk. In another bowl, beat brown sugar, mango puree, oil till fluffy. Add the coconut milk - flax egg mixture, vanilla, and beat.

Slowly add the dry ingredients and beat.

Finally, add the apple cider vinegar, mix well.

Pour in an 11 cup greased bundt pan and bake for 40 min. Cool on a wire rack.

Ice the bundt cake with confectioners sugar and water, if you wish or enjoy as such.


The color of the cake depends on the mango variety used.

You can substitute coconut milk with regular milk or almond milk too.

A drizzle of 1/2 cup confectioners sugar and a tsp water makes it even yummier.

You can make cupcakes, round or square cakes using different pans, just adjust the baking time according to the pan used and make sure the toothpick comes out clean.

Mango cream cheese or mango whipped cream frosting is a great combination to frost the cake.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Semia Payasam / Vermicelli Kheer / Vermicelli Pudding

Semia payasam is a classic Indian dessert and it is very easy to prepare. When I was a kid, my mom makes this for special occasions and we loved it so much. Words are not sufficient to express our happiness when semiya payasam was made and this is a must for birthdays. Yes, this payasam makes our birthdays extra special. I like how my mom makes with milk alone and with long vermicelli. That's my favorite but my kids like the creamier and shortcut version using condensed milk. You can make this in numerous ways and here is a very simple and faster version using condensed milk which can be made in less than 20 minutes. Today being 4th of July, my kids wanted this extra-special dessert (like us). True...when my son shouts saying mommy has made our special snake (semia...he calls snake since it looks long and slender) payasam, can understand how happy they are too. It is best for any festive occasion as well as get together. It can be served warm as well as chilled. So here a special and easy dessert for the RED, WHITE, and BLUE day!

Makes 8 - 10 servings
Vermicelli - 1 cup
Condensed milk - 400g can
Water - 1 cup
Milk - 3 cups
Ghee - 2 tsp
Cashews - 10, halved
Raisins - 1 tbsp
Cardamom - 1/4 tsp, powdered, optional
Heat 1 tsp of ghee in a pan. Fry the cashews to golden color and add the raisins and take it out in 1 min. Keep this aside.

In the same pan, heat 1 tsp of ghee and roast the vermicelli till golden color.

Now add 1 cup water and 1 cup milk and cook for about 5 min. on a medium flame.

The vermicelli will be cooked and now add the condensed milk and the rest of the milk.

Simmer for 2 to 3 min and switch off the flame.

Garnish with fried cashews and raisins. Serve warm or chilled.

Add cardamom (1/4 tsp, powdered) if you like.
Since it is yummy when served chilled too, gives an option to make ahead for parties.