An Irish and Indian From Scratch Weekend

There were so many options for our From Scratch Weekends meal, and Ryan really wanted to add in a dessert this weekend.  Since I selected our meal, Ryan selected the dessert.  We did this on Saturday night and planned for our dinner on Sunday. 
Here is what we came up with:
The plan was to do a yellow cake with vanilla butter cream icing and decorate in the Spirit of St. Patrick's Day.  This was the first time we baked a cake since moving overseas.  I should mention that my husband is an awesome cake maker, and that before I met him, he would make cakes from scratch, and cookies, and well many things.  In other words, he is awesome and can bake from scratch, and would rather not make it from the box.
Nice and creamy batter.
Two layer cakes are the way to go.
Icing time.  This may look like a TON of powdered sugar, and well, it is...but we had a good reason for a double batch of butter cream, and you'll see why.
Since this is a From Scratch meal, we made our own green decorating icing from our butter cream and some green food dye.
This is the same tool we use for deviled eggs.  It is really fun to syringe our food.
We also had green sugar crystals to decorate with too.
The idea was to use a shamrock shape and toss the green sugar around it and hope the shape was clear on the cake.
Layer one is ready to go.
Layer two and icing all around.  ryan does all the cake icing since I swear he is way better at it than I am.
He even drew the fantastic shamrock.
Then I came in and finished the decorating off with the green outlined shamrocks.
Ok, here are a few pictures of our St. Patrick's Day cake from scratch.
I love out crystal cake display.
Yummy!  Major sugar rush.
Then on Sunday we made another Indian meal.  These were the recipes.
We basically did this...well...minus the shrimp and the spinach, plus some saffron.  Hey, it's all about experimenting and finding something that works with what you have available.  Ryan is not a big shrimp person, and we had a hard time locating fresh spinach.  Ok, not a hard time, we actually never located it.
Then, instead of naan this time, we tried chapatis, made from whole wheat.
So, for the bharta, these were our eggplants.
Haha, OMG, when I took the flesh out of the eggplants and put it in a bowl, it really looked like octopus!
Chapati time!
This griddle is amazing and we use it all the time. 
We're getting there.  The recipe makes 12.  I think almost every "bread" recipe we do has 12 servings.
Then it was time to get the basmati rice going.  Again, we modified this recipe...TONS.
Grinding the saffron.  I love that it is red but when added to food it turns yellow.
Gorgeous rice.
Time for some onions.  Ryan cuts lots of onions yesterday.
With some chili powder and some ground coriander seeds.  Then the rice was added to the onions and cooked for a little while longer while the eggplant dish was prepared.
This was for the Bharta.  Here we have onions, a chopped green chili, garlic and grated ginger root.  After this was sauteed, the mashed (ok, chopped) eggplant was added and then that was cooked.  I was super slammed with cooking tasks at this point, so I guess I forgot to take a picture when I added the eggplant.  At least the finished dish can be seen below.
The dinner table, set and ready to go.  Candles lit.  Bottle of wine opened and poured.  We went with a local white wine.
The saffron and onion rice.
Chapatis, brushed with butter and folded over.
My lovely and extremely delicious plate of food.  I can honestly say this was a fantastic meal and I was super impressed with the bharta as I am not a huge onion fan, but they must be growing on me.
QUESTIONS:  What was the last dessert you baked?  What is your favorite Indian meal?  Did you participate in from scratch weekends?


Unknown said...

mmm i love Indian Food! Guess Chicken Tikka Masala is my fave :) I don't really bake dessert. No time for "from scratch" this weekend! My NY family descended upon B-more and we were busy busy with that!

FoodFitnessFreshair said...

Last dessert I baked: Chocolate chip muffins, last week. That cake looks great! I love Indian food..might be my favorite cuisine. I love kofta balls, but really all Indian food is delish.

Nutritious is Delicious said...

NOM! That cake looks soooo sweet and delicious!

I am actually baking a little somethin' somethin' right now in my heart shaped bundt pan! Can't wait to post about it later! :D

Rachel@Coconut Crumbs said...

awesome cake! looks like the shamrock's came out nicely. The last dessert I baked was oatmeal choc chip cookies...yum

Anonymous said...

That cake looks great! Love the decorations on festive!
I wouldn't really call it baking all that much, but I did make granola. I need to be baking more..I do really enjoy it!

Melissa said...

The bowl of octopus scared me! :o But the cake looked great!

Rachel Lauren said...

um. It's not actually octopus, its eggplant, it just looks shredded and octopus like. soo...yea.

I made a chocolate peanut butter (tofu) pie for Pi day on Sunday! I forgot to take a picture. this time I used Crazy Richards pb, accidentally used crunchy uhh... which was fine, but I bought you 2 crunchy and 3 creamy, meaning to take a creamy for myself. oops. OH WELL pie was delicious as always!!

Mari said...

another fantastic from scratch meal! I think my fave part of baking is licking all the batter off the bowl lol

Anonymous said...

Great scratch weekend - better than pizza! Wow, that's a lot of onions - my daughter would love it! :D

I made naan over the weekend for the first time - it turned out really good!

Simply Life said...

Wow! What a great meal! I baked some great cookies this weekend that I"ll be posting about later in the week!

Anonymous said...

Looks delicious! To be honest--when I bake (I'm more of a cooker) haha I rarely bake from scratch! Go you : )

Nicole, RD said...

Yum, as always! That cake is darling! I made Fiber One marshmallow squares tonight but that can hardly consider that baking!

I love khorma -- not healthy, but DELICIOUS and packed with flavor (just like all Indian food, I guess!)...mmm!

Shannon said...

I want a slice of that cake! Yum!

I don't make much from scratch...certainly nothing as ambitious as you have! It would be fun if my husband enjoyed cooking and we were playing in the kitchen together. But because he doesn't, it would just be me cooking, and taking a chunk out of our weekend time together. Maybe I need to convince him to give it a shot....

Seattle DUI attorney said...

Great post. Enjoyed the instructions and homemade cake recipe.

Andrea@WellnessNotes said...

Well, you already know this, but you impress me every time with your from scratch meals. Especially with baking! I love to cook, but I "can't" follow directions, so I'm a horrible baker... Last thing I baked? Not sure. But I made Averie's no bake gingerbread balls (without the ginger since I'm weird like that), and they turned out great. But what can I say, I didn't bake them... ;)

sophia said...

Indian and Irish together! ahaha, what a great combo!
Ah, Melinda...why can't you live closer to me? Then I'd invite myself for your weekend dinner all the time...;)

Gina; The Candid RD said...

OH WOW, that cake looks DIVINE!!!! It's so pretty, and the picture of the one slice looks so perfect and melt-in-your-mouth delicious!!!! I want it, please. CAn you send it to me?? I used to make cakes from scratch a lot. My high school friends took a cake decorating class and we used to practice in our kitchen at my parent's house. Those were fun times. I don't usually make desserts from scratch anymore though. I should, and I will once I get a bigger kitchen!

This weekend I made pizza from scratch again, AND I made polenta!! A new polenta recipe that turned out so amazing.

Happy St. Patrick's day to you!

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