Go for that cool scoop

Go for that cool scoop

Go for that cool scoop

I  was always interested in cooking, even as a child.  I remember how every Sunday there used to be ‘dad’s special’ churning out in the kitchen. He cooked so as to give a break to my mother and  pursue his interest in cooking. He was very passionate about it and tried out new dishes.

For him, keeping a dish traditional didn’t matter much, as he was always on the lookout for giving it an innovative, fusion twist. Perhaps, I gained my interest in cooking from him. The first thing that I cooked was a Gujarati dish called ‘Sev tamatar ki sabzi’ in sixth standard. I had tasted it at a ‘dhaba’ and wanted to try making it for a long time. I don’t enjoy bland food and whenever I eat anything, I tend to guess the ingredients in the dish and then recreate it.

I started cooking full-fledged meals when I was in seventh standard and it was a regular affair, especially during vacations. I spent long hours in the kitchen experimenting and coming up with new recipes. Thanks to all the trials and errors, today I have learnt a lot about the art of cooking.

I am a freelance interior designer and started my food blog, ‘Spice Affairs’, four months back, to give wings to my passion. My husband and son are my biggest support system and my best critics. Both of them are foodies and don’t enjoy the same menu everyday, which helps me experiment and come up with different dishes regularly. The appreciation I get from people encourages me to keep doing what I like the most and inspires me at every step. I love Indian cuisine but when I am not in a mood to have very spicy food, I opt for European dishes like sizzlers. ‘Pan-fried chilli garlic chicken noodles’ is yet another dish that I relish a lot.

Given the hot weather at present, I am sharing the recipe of ‘Kesariya Shrikhand’. Try out this no- cook easy recipe which makes for a perfect dessert in this weather. The best part is that it takes only three ingredients to make this delectable, creamy, fluffy, melt-in-the-mouth dessert. You can enjoy this any time to give your meal a grand finish. Traditionally, this dish  originated from the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat but is now enjoyed universally. It is best accompanied by ‘puris’ or ‘chapatis’.
Soma Mukherjee

(As told to Surupasree Sarmmah)

‘Kesariya shrikhand’

Thick curd 2 cups
Powdered sugar or as per taste 5-6 tbsp
Cardamom powder ½ tsp
A few strands of ‘kesar’ (saffron) soaked in 1 tbsp warm water for 20 minutes, then crushed in mortar and pestle to extract the maximum colour and flavour.
Slivered almonds 1 tbsp
Slivered pistachio nuts 1 tbsp

Put the curd in a muslin cloth and preferably hang it overnight in the refrigerator. If that’s not possible, then hang it for at least two hours in the refrigerator. Squeeze the extra moisture out.
All the extra moisture should be drained out and it should look like a ball of ‘paneer’.
Take the hung curd in a mixing bowl, add the powdered sugar, cardamom powder and dissolved ‘kesar’. Mix well using a whisk till well incorporated.
Taste and check if more sugar is needed.
Refrigerate till completely chilled.
Serve the ‘shrikhand’ garnished with slivered almonds and pistachio nuts.

Always use thick and non- sour yoghurt to make this dessert, and preferably  hang the curd inside the refrigerator to avoid it from going sour due to the hot weather.

As hung curd is a blank canvas, you can play with flavours by adding mango puree or strawberry puree or enjoy it simply with some cardamom powder flavouring.

You can make it sugar free by omitting sugar and adding honey or Sugarfree as sweetening agents. That way it will be a guilt-free and also a gluten-free dessert.