A self sufficient Chocolate Cake | Nigella Lawson’s Quadruple Chocolate Loaf Cake

Most days I like chocolate in moderation in my baked goods but there are some rare days where all I want is to stuff my face with a chocolate cake as indulgent as the one they show in the movie Matilda.

However those days also coincide with the days when I do not want to put in hours into baking something.  One such day happened to be last week. I had come back from work and instead of dinner all I wanted to have was a really good, really indulgent chocolate cake. All the chocolate cakes/cupcakes I could think of required frosting or ganache and I was not feeling up to putting that much effort. Continue reading

Have you ever lost your baking mojo?

Dearest Readers,

Have you ever just lost your interest in baking? – I know, it seems like an odd question coming from this blog.

I’ve became absent from the baking and blogging scene because my energies were directed elsewhere for a time. I went abroad for a master’s degree in England, and I had an absolute ball indulging in the scones (Betty’s Tea shop in York is a must visit)! Truth be told, while desserts and sweet goodies still call to me, my heart isn’t in baking the way it used to be.

I seem to have lost my motivation. I can’t exactly pinpoint what it was that put me into this dry spell. Perhaps it was the just the laziness more than anything else. All I know is that the hours I used to spend reading recipes and watching videos online, I now spend procrastinating and researching explanations as to why I lost interest.

After a lot of aimless researching and watching episodes of Suits, a dear friend advised me that I should get off my growing bum and add some chocolate cake to it! So today, after (yes-it’s-that-many) months of not touching any of my baking supplies, I decided to make my go-to crowd pleaser, le chocolate cupcake!

2017-01-08-photo-00001152 Continue reading

All this (good) food in this much money?! | What I had in Nepal

You get to know a lot about a place from the type of food they serve. On my recent visit to Kathmandu and Pokhara I’ve tried out some amazing food places that truly show how the food scene in these places has grown to fit the taste of the wave of tourists that flock these areas. Nepal overall is a great place to enjoy tasty food at really cheap prices. To add to that, their portions are really generous too. The bill would always come less than what we’d expect. Which is why every time I was left exclaiming to myself “All this food in this much money?!”

So here’s a not-so-little rundown of the variety of food that got my heart singing:

Thamel (Kathmandu):

New Orleans Cafe: Visited this place on our first day at Kathmandu. It was around 4pm and we hadn’t eaten anything since we got off the plane at around 1pm. So this cafe with their big portions and even bigger plates and bowls served us well. We ordered a plate of Momos and two types of pasta. Among them the momo tasted the best as both the pastas were a bit too bland for our taste-buds. Overall the food was not amazing but the courtyard style interior with laid back sitting arrangements and intriguing tourists made up for it.

fotorcreated Continue reading

That time I went trekking…and what I ate on the way

Trekking….you might be thinking what relation does it have to baking. Well let me make it clear right now, it does not. And that is what I was about to find out when I ventured on a 12day trekking trip in Nepal without any prior experience- The Manaslu Circuit Trek. The idea was obviously quite foolish but it had been a while since I had done something new, something totally out of my comfort zone and I really wanted to re-discover myself in a different setting. So off I went, throwing caution to the wind and this is the story of how it went and what I ate on the way. Continue reading

Of abandoned birthday cakes and over-indulgence|What I ate in Singapore

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 😀

IMG_20160531_081038

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.

IMG_20160531_141423

 

 

 

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.

 

IMG_20160531_205332

 

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.

IMG_20160531_185924

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.

IMG_20160601_132956 IMG_20160601_211640 IMG_20160602_132656

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.

IMG_20160602_181228 IMG_20160604_175734 IMG_20160604_184318

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.

IMG_20160607_181740

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

IMG_20160604_165605IMG_20160604_165945

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.

13329842_10156976471885506_1034300637_n 13342174_10156976471165506_567426754_n

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.

IMG_20160605_115527 IMG_20160605_120831

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.

IMG_20160605_203854 IMG_20160605_210648

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).

Piedra

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.

7-11

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.

IMG_20160606_130053

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?!

-Z

 

 

The Best Red Velvet Cupcakes in Dhaka!

red-velvet-cover3

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