Breuder

During Christmas season, the popular cake/ bread that is ordered from bakeries in Sri Lanka is the breuder. This is a speciality of the Burgher cuisine of Sri Lanka. I had been trying for some time to find someone to contribute a home-made recipe of this delicious bread. I was delighted to finally come across another blogger and invited him to share his family recipe on this blog as well. Here is the guest post of Paul van Reyk, from My Buth Kuddeh food site, with his introduction to his family tradition of baking breuder and his recipe. Wishing you all a merry Christmas!

No Christmas at our house in Sri Lanka was complete without my grandmother’s breuder. It’s basically a cakey bread, based on a yeasted dough but with the sweetness of a sponge cake, related to Italian pannetone. It’s a direct entry into Sri Lanka cuisine via the Dutch Broodtulband named for the fluted ‘turban’ shaped mould used to make it. Further embedding the Dutch connection, brueder is traditionally eaten in Sri Lankan Burgher households in slices covered in butter and topped with a thick slice of Edam cheese. There is something very festive about that red waxy ball which sliced open reveals a pale European sun yellow cheese. Making the breuder, I am transported back to the kitchen of my childhood, watching my grandmother knead the dough, having the thrill of buttering the mould and pressing sultanas against the sides anxious that they stay in place, full of expectation as it was taken to my uncles house across the road as we didn’t have an oven, and then the excitement of un-moulding this magical transformation of so few ingredients hoping desperately that it comes away cleanly. The smile on grannie’s face when it does was more rewarding almost than the first bite into its soft, crumby heart.

breuder

Breuder

  • Time: 3 hours + overnight dough-proofing
  • Difficulty: difficult
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Ingredients:

  • 500gms plain flour
  • 50 gms butter
  • baker’s yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • water
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 250 gms caster sugar
  • 125 gms currants or sultanas or raisins or a mixture of them

Method:

  1. Make the dough the night before. Take as much yeast as is recommended for your particular yeast for making bread with 500 gms of flour (it can vary so read the packet or ask when you buy it), add the yeast and the sugar to a little hot water to get the yeast started. It will froth slightly. When it’s bubbling happily, add this to the flour and mix in well. Now slowly add water and keep mixing until you have a lump of dough that lifts easily out of the bowl or off the board. Knead it for 10 minutes or so. Put it in a bowl, cover the bowl with a damp tea-towel and leave it in a warm place to rise overnight.
  1. The next day, take the dough and add to it the butter, egg yolks and sugar. Add the first three yolks separately and mix in well each time. Then add the others also one at a time alternating with dollops of the caster sugar till it is all used up. What you will have now is a very thick wet doughy batter.
  1. Butter a turban mould. Put a good sprinkle of whatever dried fruit you are using on the bottom. Squish some dried fruit against the sides of the mould, too. Pour in the batter. Sprinkle more of the dried fruit on top of the batter. If you like, and I do, you can mix some dried fruits into the batter, too.
  1. Leave this in a warm place, the mould covered with a damp cloth, for 1 or 2 hours until it rises again (it won’t rise as much as the dough did overnight).
  1. Meanwhile, pre-heat your oven to very hot – around 220C.
  1. When the dough has risen the second time, put the mould in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Check at that stage that the breuder is cooked by poking a bamboo skewer or similar into the dough. If it comes out clean, your breuder is ready. If it doesn’t, give the breuder 10 – 15 minutes more.

Tip: Putting some baking/greaseproof/brown paper on the top will reduce the likelihood of the dried fruit burning.

  1. When it’s cooked, take it out of the oven and leave it to cool in the mould. You should then be able to give the mould a good thump and have the brooder come cleanly out of it.

Resist all temptation to ice or otherwise muck around with the breuder! Just slice it up and have some butter and Edam or cheddar cheese to have it with. But you are allowed to make summer pudding with the left over breuder if you like, or indeed any of those bread pudding dishes.

Recipe source: Paul van Reyk

Surprise Delight

This week’s recipe is from Trevor Martil, who shares another of his mother’s favourite recipes – a dessert she named ‘surprise delight.’ I am bringing this recipe together with some lovely songs, from a country I visited three years ago, to Fiesta Friday.

While there were several highlights of my trip, the most inspiring was the visit to Robben Island. And yes, I was also introduced to some south African music while there. Today’s music features some of the South African music that I enjoyed starting with Mama Afrika – Miriam Makeba.

The other clip for today is from the Soweto Gospel Choir.

Hope you enjoyed the music and do send me your feedback if you try out the recipe given below! 🙂

Surprise Delight

  • Servings: 8
  • Time: 1 - 2 hours
  • Difficulty: average
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Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons low sugar mixed fruit jam
  • 1 1/2 cups mixed fruit cordial
  • 1 can cocktail fruits
  • 1 tablespoon condensed milk
  • 2 cups cake crumbs
  • 60g cashew nuts
  • 60g sugar
  • 3 dessertspoons corn flour
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 teaspoons gelatin or agar-agar
  • 1 packet strawberry jelly (jelly, 2 cups water, 15g china moss)

Method:

  1. Mix cake crumbs with mixed fruit jam, cashew nuts and press into shallow dish. Leave to set.
  2. Add cordial, water, corn flour, gelatin to a pan and cook till it thickens.
  3. Take off heat, add condensed milk and stiffly beat in egg whites.
  4. Mash mixed fruits, spread over cake crumbs.
  5. Pour the cordial custard over it.
  6. Make the jelly.
  7. Once set, chop the jelly and spread it over the custard.
  8. Sprinkle nuts.
  9. Chill and serve.

Recipe source: Trevor Martil.

Egg Kottu

Today’s kottu recipe is Egg Kottu, which I am bringing to Fiesta Friday#28.
DSC01269This week’s A.R.Rahman feature starts with Rajiv Menon’s movie Kandu Kondain Kandu Kondain (translation: I have seen, 2000) based on the Jane Austen novel ‘Sense and Sensibility’ and starring Tabu, Aishwarya Rai, Ajith Kumar, Mammooty and Abbas. The playback singer is Shankar Mahadevan who won a national award for this song.

The second song is from Ashutosh Gowariker’s acclaimed movie Lagaan (translation: Land tax, 2001) starring Aamir Khan. This song is sung by playback singers Asha Bhosle, Udit Narayan and Vaishali Samant.

The last song clip is from K.Balachander’s movie Paarthale Paravasam (translation: Ecstatic over a glance, 2001) starring Madhavan and Simran. The playback singers are Srinivas and Sadhana Sargam.

Hope you enjoy the music as well as the kottu!
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Egg Kottu

  • Servings: 2
  • Time: 30mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • Atta roti/paratha – 1 or 2, chopped
  • Mysore dhal – 4 tbsp
  • Egg – 1
  • Green peas – 3 tbsp
  • Carrot – 3 tbsp, chopped
  • Onion – 1 tbsp, chopped
  • Potato – 2 tbsp, chopped
  • Gingelly oil – 1 tbsp
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Crushed chillies – 1 tsp
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig (optional)

Method:

  1. Mix a little salt to the finely chopped carrot, onion, potato and green peas.
  2. Heat oil in a pan and lightly fry chopped and salted vegetables for 2-3 mins.
  3. Whisk egg and add it to the pan. Cook it before removing it from heat and keep aside.
  4. Cook 4 tbsp mysore dhal with water. Add 1 tsp crushed chillies, salt, ½ tsp pepper to the dhal.
  5. While the dhal cooks, chop up the paratha and the vegetable omelette.
  6. Once dhal is cooked, add the chopped roti/ paratha and the omelette to the pan and mix it well.
  7. Serve warm.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Wattalapam Jelly Pudding

I am sharing a pudding recipe that I first shared during last Eid. Wattalapam is originally a part of the Sri Lankan Malay cuisine but has become the most popular Sri Lankan dessert.  This recipe of my mother is an adaptation of the traditional wattalapam into a jelly pudding. I would like to share it at Eid Eats 2014, which I learnt about from Jhuls, an Eid event hosted by Sarah and Asiyah.
Wattalapam jelly puddingI also wanted to share two music clips from MTV Coke Studio’s youTube channel. The first clip is of a Sufi music duo that I enjoy listening to – the Wadali brothers, Puranchand and Pyarelal Wadali, from Amritsar.

The second clip is a song I listened to for the first time last week when I was searching for youTube clips of the Wadali brothers. Composed by Salim and Sulaiman Merchant, the song is sung by Munawar Masoom and Kailash Kher.

Eid Mubarak to everyone celebrating this day!
final eid eats

Wattalapam Jelly Pudding

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 1 - 2 hours
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • Thick coconut milk – 1 cup (this can be obtained by blending ¼ cup freshly scraped coconut with 1 cup of water)
  • Egg – 1 (can use 2 tbsp corn starch as a substitute)
  • Jaggery – ½ to 1 cup, depending on taste
  • Cardamom – 3 or 4, crushed
  • Vanilla extract – 2 tsp
  • Agar agar – 2 tbsp
  • Hot water – 6 tbsp

Method:

  1. Mix the coconut milk and jaggery.
  2. Lightly whisk the egg before adding the jaggery-milk mixture. Blend the mixture well.
  3. Add the crushed cardamom and vanilla extract to the mixture.
  4. Cook the pudding mixture on low heat, stirring continuously, for about 10 mins.
  5. Remove the thickened mixture from the heat and keep aside to cool.
  6. Take 2 tsp agar agar powder and mix with 6 tbsp hot water.
  7. Beat the agar agar mix into the slightly cooled pudding mixture.
  8. Cool and refrigerate.

Recipe Source: Raji Thillainathan.

Savoury Rice

I had tried to get hold of some of the Sri Lankan Burgher cuisine recipes for some time now. While some of the dishes such as lamprais, frikkadels and some kinds of specialty cakes around Christmas time are very popular and are recreated by cafes and bakeries around the country, I was more interested in the home-cooking of Burgher families. Besides Refinceyaa who shared her aunt’s recipe for capsicum with eggs on this blog, I had also asked Trevor Martil who is another of my former colleagues. He recently sent me some of his mother’s favourite recipes. Today’s recipe is one such dish, which Trevor’s mother calls ‘savoury rice with a difference.’ This rice recipe (providing both vegetarian and non-vegetarian options) is what I am sharing at Fiesta Friday together with some special music clips.

The special song clip for today is a rendition, by Amitabh Bachchan, of renowned poet and Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore’s beautiful Bengali poem Ekla Cholo Re written in 1905. This song is from Sujoy Ghosh’s acclaimed Hindi movie Kahaani (translation: Story, 2012) starring Vidya Balan. Translation of the lyrics can be found on Wikipedia.

The next song clip is from Aamir Khan’s talk show Satyamev Jayate (translation: Truth alone prevails). Composed by Ram Sampath for the lyrics written by Swanand Kirkire, Meenal Jain sings the beautiful Hindi song ‘Sakhi’ at the end of the episode on domestic violence. I think I must have watched all the episodes of the first season in 2012.

Hope you enjoyed the songs and do let me know if you tried out the recipe today!

Savoury Rice

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: average
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Ingredients:

  • 250g cooked rice
  • 150g chicken (vegetarians can substitute this with tofu or mushroom)
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 capsicum chili
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon soya sauce (Trevor’s mother prefers to use Sri Lankan MD brand)
  • turmeric
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • chili powder
  • ginger paste and garlic paste (Again, Trevor’s mother prefers the ready-made MD brand)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 30g green peas
  • 2 eggs
  • cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, star anise
  • curry leaves
  • 1 tablespoon butter or margarine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock (vegetarians can substitute this with vegetable stock)
  • parsley
  • coriander leaves

Method:

  1. Temper spices, star anise, onions, curry leaves.
  2. Add cooked rice, 1/4 cup milk, turmeric. Allow to simmer.
  3. Add green peas, eggs and stir in a tablespoon of butter.
  4. Serve and keep aside.
  5. Cut chicken into small pieces, marinate in soya sauce, and place in a pan.
  6. Cook till water is absorbed.
  7. Add oil and stir-fry adding all vegetables, onions, ginger, garlic sauces and 1/2 cup chicken stock.
  8. Cook and take off heat with gravy.
  9. Pour over rice.
  10. Sprinkle parsley and coriander leaves. Serve hot.

Recipe source: Trevor Martil

 

Ginger Date Cake

As today is my eldest sister’s birthday, I felt like sharing one of her recipes today. I decided to bring one of the cakes she enjoys making to the Fiesta Friday together with some lovely music. The recipe is given below after the music fest.

DSC01177The featured musician today is Hariharan. He trained in both Carnatic and Hindustani music though he is foremost a prominent ghazal singer and has released lots of ghazal albums. While Hariharan started his playback singing in the late 70s in Hindi movies, he was introduced to the south Indian movie world only in the early 90s by A.R.Rahman. Since then, he has been awarded both state and national awards for some of his songs. Hariharan was awarded the Padma Shri award by the Indian government in 2004.

I first chose to share a ghazal piece from the launch of the album Hazir 2, Hariharan’s second one with tabla maestro, Zakir Hussain.

The second clip is from a concert where Hariharan sings with Chitra one of their songs from the movie Love birds, the soundtrack of which was composed by A.R.Rahman.

While selecting the last clip to share here, I was trying to decide between two songs. One used to be very popular on Sri Lankan television in the late 90s, Krishna Nee from the self-titled Colonial Cousins album of the music duo – Hariharan and Leslie Lewis. The other was a Bathiya and Santhush single with Hariharan. Finally, I decided to share the one with the Sri Lankan musicians.

Hope you enjoy the music as well as the cake!

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Ginger Date Cake

  • Time: 45mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 250g self-raising flour (optional: can reduce the amount of flour and add roasted semolina ensuring that the total is 250g)
  • 250g margarine
  • 250g sugar
  • 5 eggs, separated
  • 250g dates
  • 100g ginger preserve
  • Vanilla essence

Method:

  1. De-seed the dates and chop them up roughly before letting them soak in a bowl of hot tea.
  2. Chop up the ginger preserve separately and keep aside.
  3. Whisk together the margarine and sugar.
  4. Add the egg yolks and the vanilla essence and continue beating the mixture.
  5. Then add some of the flour, chopped dates and ginger preserve, egg white and mix well before repeating the process till all the ingredients have been mixed well.
  6. Bake at 180⁰C for around 25 minutes.

Capsicum with Eggs

Today’s guest blogger is Refinceyaa Patterson. She mentions that this dish is a creation of her aunt who runs a pre-school in Trincomalee and enjoys cooking. This dish is generally cooked at her home on Sundays or special occasions as it is a favourite of their family.

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Courtesy of Refinceyaa Patterson

In the continuing South Indian movie song theme, today’s featured singer is Sujatha Mohan. She started playback singing while still at school in the 1970s. After a hiatus in her singing for most of the 80s, she became popular again when A.R.Rahman had her sing in several of his songs in the 90s. She won state awards for some of these songs composed by A.R.Rahman.

The first song clip is from the 2007 movie Mozhi (translation: Language).

The second song clip is another live performance, this time of Sujatha and Mano, of the song from Bharathiraja’s movie Kizhakku Cheemaiyile (1993). With music composed by A.R.Rahman, this was the song that made me notice Sujatha as a singer. I guess I am partial to folk tunes.

The last clip is not a song by Sujatha but that of her daughter Shweta Mohan, who started her playback singing career in 2006. In this clip, Shweta was invited for a surprise appearance on the set of a music contest where her mother is one of the judges. She sings a few lines of a poem by Bharathiyar, my mother’s favourite poet.

Hope you enjoyed the voice of Sujatha Mohan and do let me know how this recipe turned out for you!

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Courtesy of Refinceyaa Patterson

Capsicum with Eggs

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 30mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 1/4 lb (~100g) capsicum
  • 2 potatoes cut into small pieces
  • 1 large tomato
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 large onion sliced
  • curry leaves
  • 1 oz Maldive fish (optional)
  • a teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 dessert spoon oil
  • 1 cup coconut milk

Method:

  1. Wash and cut the capsicum into four slices (lengthwise).
  2. Add salt, turmeric, curry leaves, onions, potatoes, tomatoes and the capsicum slices to a pan together with a little water.
  3. Cover the pan and cook for a few minutes.
  4. When the water dries up, add the oil and the optional Maldive fish to the pan and fry the contents for a few minutes.
  5. Now break the eggs over the rest of the ingredients and mix well.
  6. Add a cup of the first extract of coconut milk to the pan.
  7. Bring the curry to a boil and take it off the fire.

Recipe source: Refinceyaa Patterson.