Sunday, 25 December 2016

Seasons Greeting!!!

MOCKTAIL
MOMMIES
WISHES ALL DEAR READERS...

WE MAKE
TO BRING ALL

IN THE COMING YEAR!!!
AND A BIG

FOR ENCOURAGING US ALL THE WHILE!!!
*PS: All images courtesy Google search

Monday, 19 December 2016

Christmas Craft

Little Ethan, this Saturday evening, banged on to our door... It was his signature style! The moment I opened the door to welcome our bubbly neighbour, I was surprised. Our otherwise chirpy fellow was not at his best. He looked grumpy! Before I could think of something to ask, he bursted out... Aunty your door is unhappy today.  It doesn't has Christmas wreath on it no...Your house is also sad, sad.. No Christmas decorations...and where is your Christmas tree. I m katty with u and uncle! Oh my my...here was the reason... And this very reason got me started on my job for last minute Christmas decorations and craft! Sharing the same with u... So that no Ethan will b upset... And that includes one inside u too :

PAPER CHRISTMAS TREES :

TYPE  1
Materials :
  • Light and dark green card papers 
  • BBQ stick
  • Glue and scissor 
  • Stickers
  • Decoration material (as per your liking)
  • Half circle of thermocol ball (for base support)

Method : 
  1. Cut circles from dark and light green card papers of different size that you can put alternate color circles of different size. Start with a smaller circle first from light green paper than cut second one , little bigger from dark color paper .

  2. Now from the Centre point of circle draw a straight line towards the outline of circle.
  3. Cut that straight line with the help of scissor  and put little bit glue on 1/8 portion of circle.
  4. As per image now fold a circle in a cone shape.
  5. Follow the same procedure for all circles and make a small hole at the Centre of each circles.
  6. Now decorate with stickers or whatever materials you have or you like :)
  7. Now take your bbq stick and apply glue on it ,then start inserting the circle one by one ,starting with the biggest circle first. Leave some space at the bottom and between circles. Now place all the circles as per the image and decorate them with ribbon bow.
TYPE  2
Materials :
  1. Green color card paper 
  2. Glue & scissor 
  3. BBQ stick
  4. 3D Golden glitter tube
  5. Star
  6. Half circle of thermocol ball (for base support)

Method :
  1. Cut different sizes of circles from green card paper .
  2. Now fold all circles in half circle .
  3. Then fold it like a image till you will get 8 parts of each circle.

  4. After that fold all 8 parts of a circle's  inner potion (shown in 3rd  image with black line) by giving little bit of pressure on it.
  5. Than its ready and looks like an umbrella.
  6. Now ready all the circles with the same procedure and make little hole at the Centre of each circles.
  7. Now take your bbq stick and apply glue on it ,then start inserting the circle one by one ,starting with the biggest circle first. Leave some space at the bottom and between circles. Now place all the circles as per the image and decorate them with glitter and star.

SNOWFLAKES:

We will make different kinds of snowflakes from hot glue gun  ...which looks good , made easily and very affordable. You can hang it on Christmas tree or make a garland or just stick it on your glass window.  You can colour it or just use it as transparent snowflakes (looks like frozen ice)

Materials required :
  • Different types of snowflakes stencil print (you can find it out from Google images)
  • Hot glue gun 
  • Golden and silver acrylic colours 
  • Golden and silver glitter 
  • Transparent thread 
  • Any thick transparent plastic (any used file cover or thick plastic zip lock bag or any product packing plastic cover you buy) and cold cream

Method : 
  1. First take your snowflakes stencil print and place any thick transparent plastic on it and apply little cream on the top side of the plastic so at the end we can easily pull out our snowflake from the surface.
  2. Now with the help of hot glue gun just draw each snowflakes on the plastic surface (see the image )
  3. Your transparent snowflakes are ready ... You can use it in as a transparent form or in decorative form.
  4. Apply golden or silver acrylic colours on it and sprinkle glitter little bit when colours are wet.
  5. Then behind all snowflakes sticks  transparent thread on it and it's ready to hang.

CHRISTMAS ORNAMENTS FROM THREADS :

Materials :
  • Green, red and yellow colour threads 
  • Fevicol and water ( both in equal proportion )
  • Disposable foam dish or any thick hardboard or thick thermocol sheet
  • Box of pins 
  • Glitter 
  • Brush and pencil
  • Transparent thread

Procedure :
  1. First , draw any ornament you want to make on the base. I drew star on a disposable foam dish and other three ornaments on thick hardboard , then you can press the pins on your drawing one by one just leave little gap between  two pins.

  2. Now select any thread colour of your liking and dip it in a mixture of Fevicol and water for half a minute . 
  3. After that remove excess mixture and start weaving the thread from one point to the other completing the outline as per your drawing and then do zig zag weaving .
  4. When you are done , apply two to three coats  of your mixture on thread ornament with the help of bursh. ( Apply second coat after a gap of 10 minutes )
  5. At the end you can sprinkle  glitter on it. ( optional )
CHRISTMAS WREATH:
                    
Material required :
  • Disposable round paper dish 
  • Dark green and light green card papers
  • Thermocol balls ( white and red )
  • Red thick ribbon 
  • Glue and Scissor

Procedure :
  1. First, take your disposable round paper dish .
  2. Then, cut the inner portion of round paper dish with the help of scissor (as per the image) . Cut carefully that it will not damage the outer circle border .
  3. Now cut vertical stripes (1 inch wide and 12 inches long) from dark and light green card papers and fold all stripes in half.
  4. Then, take your round dish border and pass your half folded stripe from it. Stick the stripe ends and also apply glue on dish border so that it will stick on the border and won't move.
  5. Now take different colour stripe and stick it on paper dish border. Stick the second one without leaving a gap between both stripes. Use alternate colour stripes.
  6. Then one by one sticks all stripes till you complete the circle. 
  7. Now cut a reverse 'V' shape at the end of all stripes.
  8. At the end, decorate it with thermocol balls and red ribbon .
With all these decorations my house sure is gonna don a happy look... just what lil Ethan wanted!!! How about yours???

Monday, 12 December 2016

MAGIC WAND Part 1

It was the first day of the week....and I was struggling with my own darling...Monday blues!!!

The alarm of my mobile rang at 5:30am and I kept on snooze for almost five times. When it snoozed for the sixth time, I pushed myself out of the bed realising that it will be too late now...



Oops!!! Sorry forgot to introduce myself. I am Manisha, a mother, a homemaker of my small nuclear family.

As soon as I entered the kitchen,my mobile rang....I got a call from my maid “Memsaab, meri tabiyat thik nahi hai toh mai aaj kaam pe nahi ayegi." The phone got disconnected.

It irritated me and I started cribbing,"Ghar ka kaam mushkil se hota hai ... aur ye baai kaam pe nahi ayegi".Back of my mind,I knew that she doesn’t take holidays unnecessarily....

While preparing Tiffin for kids(Ohh!!!Arya and Arjun) and my husband (Ramesh)I went to their rooms to wake them up.....

“Ramesh! get up...it’s already 8:30!” “Arya... you will miss your bus if you don’t get up and get ready now.” “Arjun, wake up! Very soon your friends will come to pick you up for the class.”

But, they didn’t move....as they all slept late...Ramesh was busy with his presentation and had slept at 3 in the morning. And for Arya, it was her project submission day and Arjun’s evaluation.

So, I again went to wake them up... leaving my work in the kitchen. Now, on not getting up by themselves... I lost my temper and started shouting at all of them.



“Ramesh , get up now!!Otherwise you will be late for your meeting and then you will blame me for not waking you up on time.”

“Kids.... it’s high time now get up!! And get ready fast.”

So, to avoid a heated argument so early in  the morning,they got ready very soon and very quietly. But, when we sat for our morning breakfast.... I started complaining... “Even I was awake till late night helping kids with their studies. And Ramesh, I made coffee twice for you... don’t you remember??”

They all kept mum...and left for their respective jobs. And I was all alone in my house. After finishing all my and my maid’s daily work,I was sitting idle.... that was the moment I was very upset. And then I received a call from my mother..... (wait.. wait ...to me ..my mom only).

Sounding low, she easily understood that I was upset and she asked me to come home to meet her........

I reached at my mom’s place which was nearby. I rang the door bell and she opened the door allowing me to enter the house.

“Manisha , come sit ... I will make a nice cup of tea for you.” It took her sometime in the kitchen while I was busy in my thought process. I was so busy thinking, that I didn’t even realize when she kept a cup of tea in front of me.

I was so depressed to realize, that it was the first time that she made tea for us.  Because whenever I visited her, I always made the things which she liked to eat.

She gave me a cup of tea and asked me “What happened, why are you so upset bachha??” I broke apart and started crying. She calmed me down. And I told her how things went in the morning.



I told her, " I really felt very bad for my behavior... because it’s the only time that we are together. Now, both kids and Ramesh, will be out of the house the whole day..." Mom heard quietly as I was expressing myself.

“I cannot keep them happy....I am unable to manage my house....My family...”

She first pacified me and asked me as to why was I upset. “Just because you had a fight with them..... or because your maid was not there and you had to do everything ...... or on your inability to handle the situation??"




I took a pause and started thinking the actual reason of being upset......

To be continued...

Monday, 5 December 2016

Indulge..... Pamper...... Spoil


With Christmas and New Year around the corner, I was in a mood of baking my favorite Plum Cake. That’s when my taste buds started tickling. It reminded me of the best Blueberry Cheese Cake that I had on my birthday… that was ordered from one the best cake shops in Mumbai…Indulge!!! My craving for indulging into some luscious melt in the mouth pastry, landed me and my friends at the doorsteps of the Indulge Cake Factory. Welcomed by the aroma of freshly baked cakes and the warm smile of the owner and Pastry Chef Fay Almeida, we had entered the heaven!! Grabbing the opportunity, we had a tête-à-tête with Fay , who inspired us to follow our dreams…just as she did!! Had to share the journey of a dynamic woman entrepreneur with you guys!!!

At what age did you start baking and cooking and when did you realize that ‘Oh, I am a good cook!!’
I started cooking after my marriage, at the age of 24. It was only because my husband is a foodie and I love him(almost blushing!!). That’s when I realized that I can cook.

What was the first cake that you baked?
The first cake that I baked was the Choco Coconut Walnut Cake. I made in the oven that was gifted to me by my friend. Post that I was hooked on to the oven. 

Have you taken any formal training in cooking or baking?
The only training that I have taken is for cake decoration. It was a three day training. At the end of the training my teacher told me that I should not continue because she thought that I was very bad at it. That day I decided to never look back.

What does baking/cooking mean to you?
OMG!!! I am obsessed with baking!! It is my life. It is my calling. All the television or reading that I do is only about baking and cooking.

Who is your inspiration?
My family! They have been my supporting pillars, helping me to keep up the rest of my life secure and functioning. My team, who inspires me to do better everyday as they strive for it too.  Indulge is the sum of my family at home, at work and my customers!!

How was “Indulge” your cake shop born?
After my son was 5 years old, I wanted to do something. I always believed in serving people. But was confused with the choices that I had. One day, I decided to put three chits into a bowl with three names written on it. Indulge was born as a “Lucky Draw” from those 3 choices.

What were the challenges that you faced during your start up?
My biggest challenge was that people said, “In Mulund we cant sell cakes”. I used to live in one BHK apartment, hence space was also a challenge. The first six months in Indulge went mainly into research of different types of cakes. I use to bake cakes daily and distribute them to my friends and family.  

How is your typical day at work?
There is nothing typical about my work.We start at 9 am.
I basically have 5 sections; Baking, Icing, Sugar work, Finishing and Account section. The first thing that I do is meet all my employees at each section and talk to them about the day. Scheduling is very important for me. Then, I got into Logistics. Now a days, I am more into Logistics than into baking. And each week we try and innovate new flavours. Like today we tried a Vegan Cake with Almond Butter Frosting.

What is the best compliment you have received for your baking?
There was a sms sent by my  husbands friend. I had sent him my Chocolate Bomb Cake (slurppp!!!). The sms read, “Here is an artist par excellence”.

Was there any occasion where you goofed up on a large order at the last minute? How did you cover it up?
Oh there are many…We are finally humans. Mistakes can happen. Logistical blunders do occur.

If you had to select that one cake….Which would you select as your favorite cake to bake? Why?
I love to bake Pound Cakes. The Vanilla and the Chocolate Pound. I love mixing the batter and checking when the cake is out of the oven. My favourite fragrance in the world!!! It is proven that Bakers are the happiest people on earth. You can take out all your frustration beating the batter. (Grin covered all over her face)

Which is your best selling cake?
The Double Dutch Truffle Cake. So much so, that I wanted to name my shop “The Double Dutch Truffle Place”. 

What are the qualities that are required to become a pastry chef?
Sheer perseverance…because skill can be developed but attitude is what we need to have. Believing that you can do it. Just focus and believe in yourself.

Why are Indians so skeptical about using an oven in their kitchen?
Its mainly electrical device that scares people. But things are changing. 

Your story is very inspiring to all the Indian Women who are so talented and passionate about their dreams but are unable to come out of their shell due to various reasons. What advise would you like to give them?
In my opinion when life hands you an opportunity, you make the most of it. Nobody can tell you this is what you should do. You should feel like doing it. Finally it’s not the money. My Joy is my money and my bread. I am able to touch so many peoples life through my passion ….that is my earning. 

Can you please share your one secret about baking which not many are aware of?
Firstly always use your ingredients at room temperature. Secondly do not over mix the batter of a cake especially after you have added the flour. 

Easy substitute of egg to make a cake for all our vegetarian cake lovers?
Oh there are many …. Condensed milk, curd etc. My favourite is Flax seed . Take one tablespoon of ground flax seed and add 3 tablespoon of water. This will be a substitute for 1 egg. Soak for 15 mins and it is ready to use. It is healthy too.

It was way past closing time… but I would see that nobody was in a hurry to leave the factory(that included us too!!). All her employees seemed to enjoy their work. That’s when I realized, Fay had rubbed of her passion and love for baking onto all of them. Finally I had to ask her that one last question…..

Last question…Please share  any one simple recipe of cake that can be made at home easily just for our Mocktail Mommy viewers?

Chocolate Pudding Cake:
Magically making its own fudge sauce, this cake is a great dessert for last minute guests or for your family. Serve it with ice cream for an extra special treat.

Ingredients:

Mix 1: 
¾ cup caster sugar
1 cup Maida (all purpose flour)
3 tablespoon cocoa powder
2 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup milk
1/3 cup melted butter
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract

Mix 2:
½ cup sugar
½ cup light brown sugar 
4 tablespoon cocoa powder
1 ¼ cups water, boiling hot

Serving suggestion:
Whipped cream topping.

Method:
Heat oven to 180 degree Celsius
In a medium bowl, stir in ¾ cup sugar, flour,3 Tbls cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Blend in milk,butter and vanilla, beat until smooth.
Pour batter into 8 inch square baking pan with 2 inch height.
In a separate bowl, stir together remaining ½ cup granulated sugar and brown sugar and remaining 4 Tbsp cocoa; sprinkle mixture evenly over the cake batter.
Pour hot water over the top; Do not stir.
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until center is almost set. A tester should come out clean but should have some crumbs sticking to it.
Let it stand for 15 mins
Spoon into dessert dishes, spooning from bottom of the pan to the top.
Garnish with whipped topping.


Indulge Team:
www.indulgebakes.com
www.facebook.com/IndulgeCustomCakes
Contact: 8422993535/ 8422997474
Address: Shop Number 7,
               Munish Apartments,
               LBS Marg, OPP. J&J Gardens,
               Next to Canara Bank,
               Mulund West,
               Mumbai – 400 080