Baking is one of my greatest source of happiness but then there has been times where it has led to considerable heartache too. Some days, the ingredients don’t fall off the table, the oven does not burn the top of your cake and your dessert comes out perfectly but then on some days nothing seems to go right.This is the tale of one such day. Continue reading
My recent trip to Singapore was a great one and here’s a not-so little highlight reel of (almost) all that I ate.
On my first morning, I went for a classic Eggs benedict with Salmon. Usually, the sight of a single poached egg with its runny yolk is what makes my morning every day now imagine how happy I was to see not one but two poached eggs together 😀
The Asian Marketing Effectiveness and Strategy Awards (AMES):
AMES was held at the Grand Hyatt and the food was as exquisite as is expected from such a renowned hotel chain. From the mains there was a really tasty Sea Bass but what stole the show for me was their selection of salads notably the caprese salad, the octopus salad and the roast beef salad. I was really tempted to go for seconds but I needed to keep space for dessert!
When it came to dessert I picked, raspberry tart, chocolate cake, vanilla cake with strawberries, apple strudel, cheesecake and a walnut tart. I love tarts in general and these bite sized ones just stole my heart! So much so that I picked up some more blueberry ones afterwards. The Apple strudel was a bit too heavy for my liking but the cheesecake was just amazing! I wanted to have more but sadly my stomach capacity wouldn’t allow me to do so.
So that was lunch. In the evening they served scallops with coriander sauce, which were really tasty! Let’s just say I went back so many times that at one point the chef who was preparing it behind the counter started giving me a knowing look with a smile every time I was walking back towards the counter.
Starbucks: There were some mandatory Starbucks drinks as well. Ordered this one when I met my friend Wasi for the first time in Singapore! Whipped cream makes me as happy as a kid with balloons.
Noodles: I’m a big fan of noodles in life so obviously I tried a few types of noodles at Sg. From left stir fried hor fun, Crispy duck noodles and Mee goring from various Kopitiams.
I also had my fair share of sweet treats on the go. Like this delightful tiramisu from Artisan Boulangerie Co. which is quite a popular bakery chain in Sg. This odd carrot juice from Starbucks; I’ll just say it’s not undrinkable. Thenn, Caramel popcorn which is a must have for me on every bidesh trip. I don’t understand why we don’t have caramel popcorn here yet, it’s not that difficult I assume.
Then these yogurt creations at Llaollaos. It’s said to be a healthy dessert as it has frozen yogurt and fruits as its base but then who are they kidding, look at all those toppings and the chocolate and caramel syrup dripping all over it.
Then these tasty ice cream wafers from the streetside, which are just a slab of ice cream sandwiched between two pieces of wafers. It’s such a no-brainer, makes you think why haven’t I ever tried this at home. We tried the jackfruit flavour and a strawberry flavoured one and both were very equally delightful (although I might be biased because I like jackfruit). :p
Now I’d like to give a special shout out to my best friend Wasi for taking me around some great food places in Singapore. He put aside a whole Sunday to take me to his favourite spots and food places in Singapore 😀 However, I’m glad it was only one day because when it comes to food my friend is such an enabler -_-. If I continued this pattern of eating I would’ve come back shaped like a potato.
Academy Roasters Coffee (A.R.C): We actually discovered this place because of our friend Abrar who is quite the coffee enthusiast (I mean the first thing he bought for his apartment was a coffee machine :p). Apparently their coffee is really good so he asked us to take a packet of coffee from there for him and being the amazing friends we are we hunted that place down and gots him his beloved coffee from A.R.C. While there, we tried their coffee and it was actually good. I’m not much of a coffee lover but I really loved the décor and ambiance of the place and for that I could totally see myself being a regular at that place.
Drury Lane Café: Apparently, Wasi’s favourite meal of the day is brunch and he really wanted to check out this place as it has some great reviews and rightfully so I must say. I was almost wooed by the dessert selection but then I reminded myself…brunch Zyma, that’s why you’re here. I had Eggs benedict with spinach and turkey bacon and a strawberry and banana milkshake. They were both top-notch! Then…I just couldn’t leave without tasting their dessert but we stuck to the brunch theme and ordered a Kaya toast with Nutella.
Marché: It’s one of Wasi’s favourite places to eat so it was only fair that we didn’t eat anything the rest of the day to keep space for some major feasting! We ordered Roast chicken, a Savoury Crepe and Rosti. All of them tasted amazing! Then of course I wouldn’t leave the place without dessert. We were quite full so we decided to share a slice of Strawberry Cream shortcake. With its light vanilla sponge and fresh strawberries it turned out to be a perfect complement to all the heavy eating we did earlier.
Lastly, a few days before I left we hit up Piedra Negra-Wasi’s favourite Mexican food place at Haji lane and by that time it had become somewhat of a rule that we have to order three items for the 2 of us. So we had Nachos, Burritos, Enchiladas and a Guacamole (which, I must say, much to my best friend’s disappointment was not my favourite).
Apart from all this, on the days we were out till late, doing tourist-y things we had some trusty old 7 eleven meals and they were actually not that bad.
So as you can see my food experience in Singapore was almost as varied as the people and culture of the country. However, I’d still want to go back to try some Laksa and Fried Carrot cake and Kaya toast breakfast.
Thank you for sticking till the end so here’s a photo of an abandoned birthday cake we found by the road. I have one thing to say to whoever did that. I understand you were mad at someone but what did the cake ever do to you?!
Red Velvet the name itself gives off an air of mystery.While the red color catches your eye, its the cream cheese frosting that is the hero of this creation.Whether as a cake or a cupcake, this dessert usually tastes as amazing as it looks. A lot of places in Dhaka now have Red Velvet cake or cupcake in their menu and after tasting a variety of them and carrying out some informal surveys, here are the top places in Dhaka where you can get your Red Velvet fix. Continue reading
Being a June baby is hard because that means your birthday falls right in the middle of the face melting, clothes soaking and heat-stroke inducing Bangladeshi summer. So this year on my birthday I thought of beating the heat and celebrating with an Ice cream cake! First attempt, own recipe- turned out pretty good if I say so myself. The best thing about this recipe is that you can change up the flavours and elements as long as you keep the process same. Although, freezing it overnight would have been wiser.
ICE CREAM CAKE:
What you’ll need:
- Ice Cream (vanilla or any flavour of your choice)- 2 litres
- Rooh Afza- 2tso ( trust me it tastes really good with ice cream but if you don’t then replace with strawberry syrup)
Digestive Biscuits- 2 packets, crushed
- Peanut Butter- 4 tablespoons
- Oil- 4 tablespoons
- Marshmallows & Meringue cookies -for decoration
- Prepare a 9-inch square pan by lining it generously with clingwrap, making sure there is over hang on all four side (this is so you can pull the final ice cream cake out of the tin easily)
- Take out ice cream from fridge and leave it for 10mins to soften. Once it is soft enough (easy to work with but not melted), scoop out ice cream and drop them on to the bottom of the tin, then spread it out using a spoon.
- Over the ice cream layer, drizzle 2 Tbsp of Rooh Afza OR any syrup of your choice (this makes a nice marbled effect in the end)
- Put the pan in fridge for 15mins
- Meanwhile crush your digestive biscuits and to the crushed biscuits, add 4 Tbsp of peanut butter along with some oil (just enough to make the mixture clump together). Divide mixture in half.
- Take out the work-in-progress icecream cake and spread half the cookie+peanut butter mixture on top of the ice cream layer. At this point you can also add a few pieces of marshmallows.
- Stick it back in the fridge for about 10mins. We just want everything to settle down before we proceed to the next layer. after 10mins, take it out and spread the remaining ice cream all over the previous layer. Put it back in the fridge again (NOTE: it is important to let the ice cream layers freeze for longer than the cookie/any other layer)
- Lastly, sprinkle and then properly press the other half of the cookie +peanut butter mixture over the ice cream layer, making sure the previous layer is completely covered (it is important to do so because this will layer will form your base once you turn the cake out of the tin).
- Now cover the top with clingfilm and freeze for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- TO SERVE: Uncover the top, place the serving dish over the pan, say a little prayer and in one swift motion turn the pan upside down. After the ice cream cake has safely landed on the serving dish, remove the pan and slowly take off the clingfilm. Garnish with marshmallows, meringue cookies or whatever your heart desires and voila! you’re done!
An Early Eid Mubarak, dear Readers! On these last few days of Ramadan, we here at Baked Illustrations have put together a little list for you of some of our favourite recipes for Eid. Whether you are a novice baker or one who likes a good baking challenge, we have got a recipe for everyone. Read through and find your choice of dessert! Continue reading
If I ask any Bengali, what’s the best thing about summer, I’m sure the majority would say “Mangoes.” or as we lovingly call them….”Aam” This fruit, so delicious, so sweet and perfect! I feel bad for those people in this world who will never get to know the wonderful-ness that is an Aam, who don’t have such easy access to Aam every summer as we Bangladeshis do. So as the lucky ones I feel it is our duty to showcase and celebrate this fruit in every way possible!
As for my part, last summer I made a mango salad on my birthday which went down very well and when this summer came around, I was looking forward to another occasion where I could use mangoes in a different way. That occasion came on my brother’s birthday which was on the 16th of June and I decided to make a cake incorporating mangoes in it. Continue reading