Dampfnudeln and Babka

I was watching the great british bake off bread week last week and found the different varieties of breads the contestants baked really interestedme.

I just wondered why haven’t I thought about these before?

The gbbo is a good show that is very informative and it can help us the viewers discover something new and radiant. The previous series had a puddings week which astound me and made me watch most of the episodes and get glued to it and watch for the next season. The puddings week educated me on how the puddings became into this world  from the very first method of making puddings to the latest trend. The word puddings means “dessert” in my part of the world but in ancient times it has been a savoury dish that consisted of meat which later developed into being made out of dried fruits and nuts with sugar. Whatever said and done i was perplexed at the history of puddings and the part when the worlds largest pudding was attempted in an European gathering to serve the guests.

While watching the latest episode i was perplexed  by the world Dampfnudeln.

Its a bake off and did they just mention dumplings and noodles in one word? That’s  right.

That was exactly what I was thinking.

I’ve seen dumplings. I’ve made and tasted noodles of a few sorts including the instant noodles. But I’ve never had both together.

Oh i was given 1 or maybe 2 minutes to go wild and imagine the dumplings filled with noodles baked in an oven. I know its my wierdest imagination but honestly thats all I Could think of and when the description for the Dampfnudeln was revealed I was perplexed again.

Com’on we were taught to steam buns and cakes in my cookery class back in colombo but I’ve never dared to try it and for sure it was not steamed in this form. Well I was all happy with smiles as if though I’ve discovered  a new technique which was very tricky as well as very cost savy.

Oh i bake and love baking but I do fear those electricity bills but if I can steam and get the same results why not try it.

I googled for a few recipes and tried the babka which was a funny name for a bread in my part of the world yet a very interesting technique.  I really enjoyed making it. It had a radiant look and the outcome perplexed me.

Finally i did the Dampfnudeln using the leftover dough of my babka and made the custard sauce to steam it using my knowledge and the recipe from an online site.

I was so concentrating on paul hollywoods advice that if we try and lift the lid to check the Dampfnudeln it may go down and the bread may not work so I gave the Dampfnudeln more time and finally ended up with burnt bottom Dampfnudeln. Well they had there bottoms burnt but the body was soft and perfectly risen with a smooth face. I am for sure gonna attempt again till then good night.


<a href="https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/perplexed/">Perplexed</a>


Dont you think
They are smiling
Before we bite in
They were shivering
Hence the cracks
We think its happiness
Yet its a mere shiver
That all scones have

Before we bite and destroy there beauty
We rejoice is happiness

As we save time On cutting

and just dab the cream

With a bit of jam
By ripping them apart
So our teeth can bite
And enjoy them wholeheartedly


Mafaza’s Rose Sponge



4 eggs

5 tbsp sugar

1/3 cup whole wheat flour


Seperate the eggs and whip the egg whites till stiff peaks form with the sugar.

Beat the egg yolk and the rose water.

Fold in the egg whites into the egg yolk in batches until incorporated evenly.

Gently fold in the flour until distributed evenly.

Bake in a pre heated oven at 140 degrees celcius for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Cool completely and sandwich with custard or jam.



To make rose water boil a tbsp of water with a small edible rose and drain it. This makes a good aroma for the cake.


Bread Basket

everytime I see a basket filled with breads and bun I am mesmerized by its beauty. bread in a basket is such a lovely sight. I have been wanting to create a lovely basket like those I see on the internet, tv programs and picnics images. I remember seeing my ginn readers back in junior school illustrated with images that have picnics with baskets of bread or sandwiches. so the first time I saw a lovely basket in sri lanka last year I grabbed it and shoved it on my cart. the purpose was to create a basket of bread or bun.

I tried making my yeast free bread for the second time and it was a success, they were soft and delicious. quick and easy. so here are some images on my visualized basket of bread created from my junior school reader illustrations.

so after successfully achieving my very own recipe of baking bread and buns I decided to follow a recipe to make a bread loaf so I depended on my very own and loving “The Big Book of Baking”

it has a good selection of recipes and they need to be tried at least some of them. It’s winter, the best time to bake bread, especially when it’s fresh out of the oven homemade and the house scented with baking makes it the best comfort food (according to me).

The desire to master the art of baking breads and buns was passed onto me by my mum, she loves to bake a perfect bread loaf and she is a self taught cook who is crazy of cookbooks and I am her crazy daughter who adopted her cookbook love and the passion for cooking. every time my mum sees a cookbook or cooking show she used to be glued to that place until she found out what’s the outcome. I here she is not feeling well now and has given up her passion but am here to continue it and I am addicted of baking. I just can stay awake for the sound of baking, or watching a baking program or even eating a baking good. no worries I can even just stand there watching and photographing a baked good. so last weekend was a bread thursday. I baked the crusty loaf bread and voila it turned out super perfect. it was soft and delicious. kept well over the counter for up to 4 days. You can make a sandwich, serve with stew or even do a bread pudding with this homemade bread. I would like to say that The Big Book of Baking is a worthy investment for all bakers. it has details from basic baking to bread making and it gives you information on all things baking. I am so glad I invested a 50 dirham for this book and it holds my memory at the first floating library visit last year in september.

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next idea is to create a glass of bread sticks 🙂

have a great winter 🙂

Mafaza’s Chocolate Cake

A sudden craving for chocolate cakes filled myself as the winter breeze entered the hallway through the open window.  Winder days are so refreshing and make you want hot chocolates and brownies fo dinner.

It was 8 pm when i was wondering if am gonna follow a recipe from a book and bake or use the usual recipe and add some cocoa to make it  a chocolate cake which is how i sometimes do when i think of the idea that the butter should be beaten so that the sugar is dissolved. I find it boring at times as the sugar crystals never dissolve easily. They are so coarse and using powdered sugar to bake a cake is not a good idea as it does not taste the same for me.

So here i decided to make it easy and experiment by creating my own instructions and ingredients.

I name it after myself as it’s my lazy day quick chocolate cake.

Mafaza’s Chocolate Cake Recipe


3 full eggs

3 egg yolks

4 tablespoon sugar

10 teaspoons drinking chocolate

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons cream of tar tar

A pinch of Salt

1 cup wheat flour

2 teaspoons vanilla essence

100 grams cooking chocolate

3 tablespoons butter

1/4 cup water

Strawberry chocolate shavings (optional)


Melt butter and cooking chocolate

Boil the water and dissolve the sugar

Combine what flour, drinking chocolate, salt, baking powder and cream of tar tar

Beat the 3 eggs with the 3 egg yolks and vanilla essence

Pour in the melted butter and chocolate mixture with the dissolved sugar onto the eggs and continue beating

Incorporate the dry ingredients withthe wet ingredients

Line a baking pan with butter and flour

Spread the batter and sprinkle the strawberry chocolate shavings on top

bake in  a moderate oven until golden brown on top for 20 minutes

Take off the oven once done and cook complete

Serve with some chocolate ganach and whipped cream or ice cream


For a gluten free options substitute  the wheat flour with any ideal gluten free flour .

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Double Chocolate Nutty Brownies

 SOMETIMES THINGS HAPPEN UNEXPECTEDLY, THAT’S WHAT IS CALLED A SURPRISE. I decided to follow a recipe from my favorite book (i call it favorite cos the images make me drool and i love the word chocolate 🙂

I collected the ingredients following the book and learnt that i dint have enough cooking chocolate or cocoa. i also had a lot of chopped mixed nuts which i wanted to use badly on my brownies. so the little changes i did is making my brownie special and my very own version. recipe inspired by –20141009_164436[1]2014-10-01 13.50.0420141008_141510 2014-10-04 06.45.02 2014-10-04 06.33.1720141008_141519 originally this brownie is called mocha brownies and i rename it as double chocolate nutty brownies for substituting and changing the method. its totally a different method and is very easy. why they named it mocha brownies can be due to the coffee mix the recipe calls for which i did not use in my brownies. here is my recipe :

Double Chocolate Nutty Brownies


1 cup chopped nuts use any nuts

100 grams cooking chocolate

3 tablespoon drinking chocolate powder

2 eggs

1/3 cup butter

1/2 cup flour

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking powder


  1. Melt the cooking chocolate with a teaspoon of butter
  2. Mix together flour, drinking chocolate and baking powder
  3. Cream together the butter and sugar
  4. continue beating by adding the eggs one at a time
  5. incorporate the dry ingredients with the egg mix
  6. fold in the melted chocolate
  7. spread on a tray greased with butter and dusted with flour
  8. sprinkle a tablespoon of flour on top evenly and bake in the microwave on a 80 heat for 5-8 minutes checking after 5 minute

cool completely before cutting serve as it is or drizzle with extra melted white chocolate and sprinkle some drinking chocolate powder on top the sprinkling of flour on top and bottom creates a crust on the cake store for a week on the shelf  unless your a slow eater on sweets 2014-09-25 09.06.44 just loved playing around with photos.

So anyone wondering why i used a phrase as sometimes things happen unexpectedly which why its called a surprise?

That’s because this is my first brownie I’ve ever made in my baking life and second i did not use the appropriate measurements mentioned in the book and substituted some ingredients like drinking chocolate powder for cocoa which was very sweet and the fear of it turning out too sweet stuck me as my hubby hates extra sweet stuff.

Another reason is i cooked it on my microwave and immediately cut a piece to taste it and found it a bit too gooey and thought its undercooked and went shopping for eid the next day with a thought to get home and bake something else to serve the guests.

All in all my mind was not satisfied in the brownie i bake and now i know your wondering why i post such a thing in the blog. Dont worry my brownie was perfectly cooked and why it seemed undercooked was i cut it before cooling.  The brownies were not too sweet cos the bitter cooking chocolate i used helped cover up the sweet drinking chocolate.

Why i posted is not only did the brownie turn out well but my hubby and guests enjoyed it and loved it.

We all have a story behind our own recipes and success always come through a tough way. Not everything is easy to achieve even while cooking,  a compliment for a small sweet that we do counts at times.

In My Kitchen : Pan cooked pastries

Five O’clocks in the evenings are always busy times unless i fell asleep . I guess I’ve mentioned I am a microwave baker and last week my microwave went for a break 😉 I miss it badly. before the microwave went on a break I misunderstood its capability which made me to cook the pastry sheets on a hot griddle over a medium heat. well it did turn out well. it was perfectly cooked and crispy on the outside. this is ideal for those who wanna try something new or don’t own an oven like me.





the pastry sheet was placed on top of a bowl of soup to be eaten like a deconstructed pie.

I decided to give it a try by placing the pastry sheets on the bowl of soup like a lid and baking them in my microwave, it took me roughly 3-4 minutes and the result was good.


so on top you see my soup with a pastry lid and the center of the pie after baking is whats below.


how to bake pastries on a griddle

1. bring the frozen pastry sheets to room temperature.

2. heat a nonstick pan over medium heat and turn it to very low.

3. place the pastry sheets one at a time on the griddle and cook each side for 3 minutes.

4. take off heat once the pastries are crispy and make sure to cook less or more depending on the shape and size of your pastry sheets.

Food Story : Cake of the fortnight

Buying recipe books is not easy as it seems when they are affordable at a place like the floating book shop logos hope. The price made me grab all book on cake and baking. The 100 cakes book encouraged me to try put a cake a week which is why I ended up trying the third cake from this book. It has 100 cakes and I have no idea how I will be able to try them all out. Its kind of challenge to me. I have a basic cake recipe which is soft and delicious that calls for equal amount of flour, sugar and butter. But many recipes I’ve come across in books call for different measurements on each ingredient. That’s the key reason why I wanted to try all the 100 cake recipes from my recent cake book. So this cake is the 3rd recipe I tried out of the 100 cakes.
This recipe has a different flavor as it contains Nutella and almonds.
I tried Nutella very recently only after visiting Sri Lanka. Though I’ve seen many offers on nutella in Dubai I’ve never got the urge to try it out. I am now a fan of nutella, for those who have not yet tried nutella please try soon ,its chocolaty and delicious. Use it as a topping for cakes, cookies, éclairs and doughnuts.

I was not so sure on how the cake might turn out which is why I tried baking the cakes first and they were really good with a bit of crunchiness from the almonds and sweetness from the nutella with a chocolaty flavor.
ice cream
I was so lazy to make the topping which was also from nutella I cut the cup cake vertically into half and topped each half with a scoop of fruit and nut ice cream. It was so delicious and went together very well. The crunchiness of the almonds and softness of the cake added an extra taste to the fruit and nut ice cream.

Chicken BBQ and Foccacia – Food Story & Recipe

Food Story

I have never done or seen a BBQ live in my life until I met my husband and we moved into dubai. The first year in dubai, winter appeared in just six months since I moved into dubai. All supermarkets were stocked with winter clothes and BBQ items from charcoal to BBQ grills and many offers on Chicken. I was so excited to have a BBQ and finally my husbands office had a BBQ party to which I was also invited. It was a family get together as well for office staffs and the boses birthday so the party was held on the 31st of December night which was planned to go on till early in the morning of january 1st.
I reached the party and had a warm welcome. After spending some time chatting with Co – staff employees wifes and the boses family I was so distracted by the sight of wine being served for guests who preferred to drink and later on I made up my mind as these things are common and we can never stop whats on around us unless it’s our residence.
Similarly if we are at a hotel, we do not leave without eating just because the hotel serves alcohol for the customers who as for a drink, do we?
No we dont.
so I was feeling a bit comfortable and planning to have the first BBQ which was being grilled live in front of my eyes.
I was with my hubby’s cousin and his wife who was a person who cover her face. She hardly drank or ate anything and they were in a hurry to leave as we were supposed to attend another bowling party at a bowling centre in mirdiff.
I was so wanting to eat the BBq which I agreed to eat a few pieces soon as I was served waiting for none except the heat to cool down. We quickly ate the BBQ which I learnt later that it was not chicken but duck meat.
Soon as we left the party in haste to beat the new year outing Traffic and reach the bowling centre in time to play and celebrate the new year. So this is my story of trying oyt a BBQ live for the first time in my life.
Later on in mid winter I and my hubby got together and had a BBQ night on a weekend.
And we also had a good get together amongst my husbands friends and cousins.
After having all these fun in dubai I was sincerely reminded of my family back in sri lanka. They are same as myself have never tried a BBQ live and tasted at home. So I decided I will try this out with them and let them experience the joy of winter food.
On my recent vacation to sri lanka I went shopping for a instant BBQ grill and got some chicken meat marinated with nothing special but the normal spices at home.
It was a bit drizzling outside while I tried to light the instant grill inside the courtyard of our house.
It took a few unsuccessful attempts and finally ended up adding a bit of kerosene into the grill and the chicken meat hardly got cooked. Fimally I decided to place the chicken on top of the gas flame and get it grilled. The kitchen was filled with mild smoke and I was sweating due to the heat. The chicken was finally cooked but there were more to be cooked. I was so tired and exhausted of struggling to do a BBQ and failing I decided to get the rest of the chicken baked. Finally I was having chicken done using two different methods grilling over medium flame and baking in a moderate oven.


The presentation

I wanted to serve the three elements individually on a plate but decided to assemble it in top of each other and make it more easier to eat and appetising for the eyes.
So finally I cut and placed the foccacia bread in a tray and topped it with a slice of capsicum, tomatoes and a piece of the chicken.
I served each one a set of these with one being flame grilled chicken while the other being oven baked chicken.


The Foccacia Bread

This was none other than my very own recipe inspired by jamie Oliver’s 30 minute meals. I never measured any ingredients and I usually add them according to my experience and knowledge.
Refer my pizza dough in zataar keema pizza and am sure you’ll get all your bases perfect.
fdocca cia

My BBQ Recipe

500 gms chicken
2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
1 teaspoon chillie powder
1/2 teaspoon crushed black pepper
Salt to taste
Method of preparation
1) Clean, wash and pat dry the chicken.
2) Add all the ingredients and mix well.
3) grill over a BBQ grill until done or bake in a moderate oven according to the time required for your oven and until cooked evenly.

Serve with a choice of bread, rice or rotti over a spread of some humus, raw vegetables such as tomatoes, capsicum, onions and lettuce or even any other green vegetable.

Serve with humus and flat rotti to give the dish an arabian twist.
Drizzle some extra olive oil to give it an Italian twist and serve with foccacia.
For an indian taste serve with sambar and plain rice or some cumin rice.

Hope you enjoyed this post.
(C) travelandfoodworldwide mafaza haleem

Eclair factory


party treats

party treats



Eid Favours

Eid Favours




It all started in 2010 when I decided to take over baking as a profession.  I learnt the art of baking and was in love with éclairs, having never thought I would learn how to make my favourite sweet.

I remember the good old days at school running over to the canteen to get an éclair and licking the delicious chocolate drippings of my fingers. I recall wondering silently on my every bite If I can learn to make éclairs.  So when the silent wish came true I was overwhelmed with joy. I decided to make and sell them to receive good compliments and it all did happen.
I opened an facebook page and was quickly famous with the help of few friends and was busy getting inquiries on éclairs. I created my very own price list and flavors.
The day when my new found love for baking came to end wasn’t long. I stopped it all on my own will due to some misunderstandings which was not worth at such a cost. I deleted my page due to it and lost all the lovely likes.
Many years passed and I stopped baking éclairs. Last year in dubai I decided to revist my éclair recipe and tried it on my microwave oven which was a total failure. I gave up and decided not to try until I get back to sri lanka. On my vacation this year it was eid (festival) for us and I badly wanted to try making éclairs to show off to my husband on how good I was in baking. Well, it turned out perfectly and my husbands cousins liked my éclairs. It was delicious and a success.

This month was my sister in laws kids birthday celebration and I promised her I will make her some party food. Having less time with a baby on toe I was pressed with a tight schedule as my hubby was also down on vacation. I was so excited to make the éclairs for my sister in law that I grabbed a few utensils and ingredients and started off making the first test batch of eclairs with a doubt if it might turn out well as I have never baked in a large oven and have no idea on the temperature level. I dint have a proper measurement and did the batter with only 3 eggs as the mixture turned out to be very runny. Worried if I wasted the ingredients I decided to add extra flour to thicken the mixture to a piping consistency. Finally the batter was just fine. I piped it and baked the éclairs watching through the oven glass if its rising. Checking in after 10 minutes I was overwhelmed with joy to see my eclairs rise in the oven. I started off with another batch of batter which was perfect.

In less than four hours I baked around 70 éclairs and left it out to cool. Happy with the final dish I was enjoying the beauty of my éclairs.
The party started and the éclairs vanished in no time leaving nothing for us to taste.

Finally the satisfaction has given me an idea to start my éclair factory all over again.

Joy of baking can never be described, but tasted