Whisking goodness

Whisking goodness
Innovation seems to be the middle name for every industry now and the food industry is not far behind. With healthy eating becoming a part of everyone’s lifestyle, people are looking for additions in everything — from main course to dessert. When it comes to desserts, the recent trend has been to include vegetables in it, which could make some raise their eyebrows and others to try it out.

While pumpkins and carrots have been used in desserts by many, Lakhan Bhounsle, a homebaker, has tried innovative creations like ‘zucchini chocolate doughnut with orange glaze and pumpkin seeds’ as a competition to the actual dessert version. “The whole concept of masking desserts is a great step as children are very fussy nowadays. It is a requisite for every parent to watch whatever the child eats. When masking a dessert, children wouldn’t know the difference and will have it,” says Lakhan. But not everyone is open to such innovation. “My recipe came about from a classic bread recipe from my mother,” he adds.

Having tried beetroot in ‘red velvet brownies’ and ‘red velvet cupcakes’, Ashel Dimi, a homebaker, says that the bright pink colour adds the enticing element. “The colour of the vegetable does its magic in terms of attracting one to the sweet. It’s a great healthy replacement to the food colour and I’ve also used it as a fusion element in ‘pumpkin spice cake’ which adds to the texture,” she says.

Ashel has also tried ‘sweet potato cake’ that is known as a classic dessert in other parts of the world. “I made ‘beetroot cookies’ as I keep looking for creative healthy options for my daughter. Adding organic elements in a dessert which involves a whole-wheat base is a complete solution for the sweet tooth,” adds Ashel.

Apart from using the beetroot puree for the colour, the goodness of the vegetable adds to the nutrient factor. “Cookies are everyone’s favourite simple dessert and no one thinks twice before digging into them,” she says. Apart from salads, one needs varied nutritious options to indulge in and such desserts seal the deal, she observes. “If one wants to try something new for a party or even for a home gathering, these would make great accompaniments,” adds Ashel.

Cake-artist and homebaker Lubna Gafoor finds including vegetables in desserts a trend that is gaining popularity in the West. She has seen many international dessert chefs share videos of the same online. “Tomato seems to be the newest addition to desserts now. Also I have noticed that ‘rajma’ or kidney beans is being whipped into chocolate cakes as they add to the texture,” she details.

Lubna, who has created fusion desserts like ‘cauliflower muffins’, says that mothers keep trying to create innovative foods so as to feed children healthy goodies. “This is were such ideas sneak in from. I have used vegetables like beets, carrots and zucchini into cupcakes and muffins. Items that click with my family is what I try out for customers,” she says.

Lubna feels that using never-before combinations in desserts is the trend now. “Baking isn’t really a part of Indian cuisine and is something really new to us. Such trends will take time to click,” she adds. Apart from creations like ‘carrot halwa’, other vegetables that have been included in such fusion should be wisely chosen, points out Rabi Kant Singh, executive sous chef of High Ultra Lounge. “Desserts are a big part of the menu and they are the grand closing to any meal. They create a great impression too. We love our desserts and many are open to try new things too. We have tried souffle out of sweet potato and made black carrot cakes,” he details. Rabi says that he and his team have also tried using bitter gourd to make panna cotta.

He says that since people are more and more health-conscious, these desserts are also options they would like to see growing. “In many of these desserts, the vegetables are cooked less so as to retain their nutritional properties. This is a trend that has a future. The combinations and the right balance are important to strike the palette right,” he adds.

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