Browned Butter Red Velvet Brownies ~ From Scratch

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Hello! Meet the perfect Valentine’s day dessert!

Everyone loves a good brownie and when your regular brownies got a makeover, red velvet brownies were born. They become a thing of out-of-this-world! And they do not come from a box-mix! Yes, these are made 100% from scratch. So earn some extra brownie-points and make them for your Valentine!

 

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These brownies turned out so dang awesome that they were demolished FAST. It’s only 2 of us and with some self-control we made them last 48 hours! Every single piece and each last crumb was devoured with so much happiness. 9 pieces had to be equally divided among the 2 of us, such a difficult task! It was natural that I get an extra piece which I had happily consumed anyway while photographing these beauties. I mean who could resist? 😛

These brownies were supremely moist, fudgy and soft. Browned butter gives a unique depth of flavor. I like to use both white and brown sugar for a perfect brownie. Brown sugar attributes to a caramelized flavor while white sugar contributes to a crisp, shiny top! I’m a plain brownie person so I went plain with mine but you may fold in white chocolate chips and sprinkle some on top before baking for that extra chocolate-kick.

 

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You may decorate these in many ways. I had them plain, with some powdered sugar sprinkling, with Nutella frosting and warm brownie topped with Double Chocolate Ice-cream. You bet I was completely ruining my healthy diet those 2 days and it was absolutely worth it! Sorry to all my Instagram followers for torturing them with all that #foodporn. Now you’ve got the recipe, time to treat yourselves!

Browned Butter Red Velvet Brownies ~ from Scratch

Yields: 9 pieces | Prep time: 15 minutes | Bake time: 20 minutes | Total time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 + 1/2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk (or 3 Tbsp milk + 1 Tbsp vinegar)
  • Red food color
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven at 180ºC / 350ºF. Line 8×8 inch square baking pan with an aluminium foil and grease it with oil. Set aside.
  2. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium high heat. Stir constantly until butter has reached a light brown color and little bits have formed. It will be difficult to see the color of the butter as it foams a bit, so I go by smell– it will be very fragrant.
  3. Pour the butter in your mixing bowl(no need to cool). Add the sugars and cocoa powder and beat until smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing in between each addition until almost creamy.
  4.  Add the salt, buttermilk, red food coloring and vanilla extract.
  5. Add the flour and mix well. Batter will be of cupcake consistency.
  6. Spread the batter in baking pan and bake for 19-22 minutes (mine were done in exactly 20 minutes) o until toothpick inserted in a center comes out clean. Let cool completely before cutting into pieces. Serve with a sprinkle of powdered sugar, Nutella frosting or warm with a scoop of ice-cream.

Orange Strawberry Spritzer For Two ~ Valentine’s Special

Orange Strawberry Spritzer1

 

It’s been ages since I posted any recipe for a drink. When I had a refrigerator full of sweetest, fresh strawberries last week, I had to oblige and make you(essentially I mean, me & hubby) this lovely spritzer. It is such a simple concoction that I am sort of embarrassed to even post it as a recipe. But it was so refreshing, I knew it had to make an appearance here!

It being a month of LOVE, this seemed just perfect for the celebration! Make your evening special with this recipe scaled down for just the TWO of you! Quick to make and oh-so-delicious to taste. Sparkling water lends such a delicate touch but you may use club soda as well. Not over the top yet an elegant, low-cal, non-alcoholic drink. It is just great for unannounced guests/friends and you may use frozen berries for such emergencies. You’re sure to impress everyone!

Enjoy!

 

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Orange Strawberry Spritzer For Two

Serves: 2 | Prep time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 7-8 fresh strawberries, hulled (You may use frozen)
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 medium orange, juice squeezed
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • Sparkling water/club soda
  • Strawberry slices, for garnish (optional)

Directions:

In a blender jar, add strawberries and sugar and purée smooth. Pass it through fine cotton mesh or sieve to get rid of the seeds(totally optional!).

Stir in orange and lemon juice to it. Pour sparkling water/club soda on top. Add 3-4 ice-cubes to each serving glasses and pour spritzer to it. Garnish with strawberry slices.

Red Velvet Cake Donuts ~ Valentine’s Special

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After being on a month long health-kick, I think it is time to introduce a little indulgence. After all, it is last day of January.Valentine’s day is just round the corner so today’s post was definitely called for. I’m giving you a gorgeous sweet something for the occasion.

I have already professed my love for donut pan to you before. Ooh, how much I adore it. I want to bake everything into donut now, yes, obsessed is the word! But come on, how cute are these baked donuts?! You’re definitely going to have hard time deciding, eat them for breakfast or dessert! Or may be have them for both 😉

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These baked donuts are smothered with cream cheese frosting. Purr..fection! They are soft, tender and fluffy. They come together quickly and uses just a bowl. Baking is done in 8 minutes flat! Takes about 20-25 minutes start to finish. Of course, you will need to wait for donuts to cool completely before applying the frosting. I know which is quite difficult! So you may make them a day in advance, frost them and sprinkle sanding sugar just before serving. No more waiting, problem solved!

I made a small batch of 6 which is perfect if you’re still dieting. They are not obnoxiously fattening. I counted calories to be sure and each donut has 210 calories with frosting. Not so bad, right? Perfect for a cheat day with minimal cheating which means, yes, go ahead and have two!

So make them for Valentine’s or make them now. Bake them as donuts or as cupcakes. Just make them! 🙂

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Red Velvet Cake Donuts

Yields: 6 | Prep time: 15 minutes | Bake time: 8 minutes | Total time: About 25 minutes

Ingredients:
For donuts:
  • 2/3 cup + 2 Tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup white granulated sugar
  • 3 Tbsp oil
  • 5 Tbsp yogurt/buttermilk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Red food coloring
  • 1/4 tsp apple cider vinegar
For cream cheese frosting:
  • 3 Tbsp plain cream cheese, at room temperature (I used plain spreadable cream cheese)
  • 3 Tbsp icing sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • Splash of milk, only if needed
  • Red sanding sugar, to decorate

Directions:

  1. For donuts: Preheat oven at 180ºC / 350ºF. Spray the 6-count donut pan with oil. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a another mixing bowl, whisk together egg and sugar till nicely incorporated. Whisk in oil, yogurt/buttermilk and vanilla extract. Slowly mix in dry ingredients to wet ingredients with the help on spoon or rubber spatula. Mix until just combined. Do not over-mix.
  4. Add red food coloring as required stirring minimally. Finish with whisking in vinegar to the batter. Divide the batter equally and fill the mold no more than 3/4th. Bake for 8 minutes. Cool in pan on a cooling rack for 5 minutes. Then carefully turn out doughnuts directly onto rack to cool.
  5. Cream cheese frosting: In a small mixing bowl, whisk together cream cheese, sifted icing sugar and vanilla extract until smooth. If the consistency is too thick, add a dash of milk. Spread the frosting on completely cooled donuts. Sprinkle with red sanding sugar just before serving as the colors will bleed. Doughnuts will keep in an airtight container for 2-3 days stored in a refrigerator.

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies ~ Eggfree & Vegan

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A classic chocolate chip cookies with a glass of milk! Match indeed made in heaven!

Imagine to be able to have a healthier version of the buttery classic. After receiving rave reviews about Inside Out Chocolate Chip M&M Cookies(Thank you all!), I decided to recreate them into a classic chocolate chip version. I used olive oil instead of butter this time around and skipped milk completely. The result was amazing. I am not claiming these cookies to be skinny or low-fat. They are still 120 calorie each(assuming you get exactly 30 cookies) but you won’t miss the evil fat here, trust me! (Come on, olive oil is a good fat!)

 

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If you’re crispy cookie person then flatten the cookie dough thin as per your liking and let them bake for an extra minute or so. When baked thick and puffy, these cookies are soft and equally chocolicious. You won’t be able to stop at just one, I know you guys too well! 😉

Enjoy & have a gorgeous weekend!
Eeeep… I am off to a road trip and shall share more once I am back! 🙂

Whole wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies ~ Eggfree & Vegan

Yields: Around 30 cookies | Prep time: 15 minutes | Chill time: 30-60 minutes | Bake time: 14-15 minutes
Ingredients:
  • 3 Tbsp flaxseed powder + 9 Tbsp water
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (unsalted butter can be substituted)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup date syrup
  • 2 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 + 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 + 1/4 cup mix of dark & milk chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, mix together flax seed powder and water. Set aside for 10 minutes.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together whole wheat flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk olive oil and sugar together til completely incorporated. Whisk in date syrup, vanilla extract and flax seed mixture.
  4. Stir in dry ingredients to the wet ingredients to form a dough. Fold in chocolate chips. Chill the dough in refrigerator for about 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  5. Preheat the oven to 160ºC/325ºF. Line the baking sheet with parchment paper. Take about 2 Tbsp of dough, form it into a ball between your palms and flatten them with fingers or a fork. The cookies won’t spread much while baking so flatten how much ever thickness you like. Bake them for 14-15 minutes. Let them cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring them on cooling rack to cool completely. The cookies will stay fresh for 1 week at room temperature stored in an airtight container.

Strawberry Jalapeño Salsa

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This salsa is so so good. I made it the other night when few friends came over and I knew after the first bite that I had a winner. Thankfully I had clicked few pics beforehand (food blogger problems!) so I decided to make it a post.

Actually, it is quite silly of me to be presenting this as a recipe with strict measurements because, really, you can just chop, drop and taste as you go! So consider this as a rough guideline. You may substitute orange juice in the recipe with lime or make it using pineapple instead of strawberries. Summer on your plate!

 

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This recipe here works so perfectly and you can use it on chicken, fish, meats, tacos, bruschetta, or just scoop it up with chips! Pretty versatile. Bring it to a pot-luck or a party and I bet no one has had it before! It is sweet, tangy, spicy and has a lot going on. Strawberries are in abundance right now, so go for it!

Brighten up your Monday with this simple yet cracking dish!
Have a great week ahead! 🙂

 

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Strawberry Jalapeño Salsa

Serves: 3-4 | Prep time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeds removed and finely chopped
  • Zest and juice from 1 medium orange
  • Around 20 fresh strawberries, chopped into small even dice
  • Fresh cracked black peppers
  • Handful of cilantro, rinsed and finely chopped

Directions:

In a large bowl, let onion, jalapeño, orange juice and zest steep till you prepare strawberries.
Add strawberries, pepper, cilantro and toss. Chill until ready to serve.

Note: Don’t make this much more than an hour or so before serving. Like all salsas, it will wilt and the fruit may get a little mushy. An hour is the optical amount of time for the flavors to meld and the juices to start flowing. Longer than that salsa will slowly start to lose its fresh appearance.

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