Khoya Cheesecake (fusion dessert)

When I started cooking in the kitchen, it was forced by my mother and my whole aim used to be to finish the given work fast as soon as possible and dash out of the kitchen.

Later, when I started staying in a different city alone because of my job, I had to cook because I needed something to fill the stomach.

After marriage I was completely a house wife, so started doing organised cooking. Some disasters happened and calls to mom before each festival for the recipe of a particular dish were regular.

Disasters in kitchen never encouraged me to try the same dish again. As I used to feel that already I had wasted so much… I should not take second chance.

Successful attempts and praises used to give energy and enthusiasm to try some thing new!!! But till now I was cooking only those dishes which have fixed recipes. It never occurred to me to do some experiments and create something new. Probably because I was in my own shell. My world was around my mother and my mother in law’s world where traditions were fixed. But now social media was slowly creeping into people’s life. People were getting introduced to unknown regions. I got introduced with the world of baking. I was so surprised to see that people bake breads and cookies in their kitchen ovens. Not only this, but many create new dishes by experimenting two different types of recipes together.

I gathered courage and started baking in my microwave. Slowly we stopped buying any bakery stuff from the market as I got to know the difference between ingredients used in bakery and home baked stuff.

Success boosts our confidence a lot!! I was willing to prepare a dessert which should be a fusion of western and Indian cuisine. But at the same time it should not be complicated. Mawa/khoya (evaporated milk) Khoya/Mawais a traditional, classic, rich ingredient in many North Indian sweets preparations. A whole sweet could be done with khoya or it could be the base ingredient for other sweet or it can be used as a filling in sweets. It is even added in some vegetables and the best part is that I always prepare it rather than buying. So I decided to use khoya, all time favourite ingredient and prepare Khoya/Mawa Cheesecake. For the base of any cheesecake marie or graham crackers are generally used. I felt that instead of using graham crackers or marie cookies, Nankhatai (cookies prepared with clarified butter) would compliment this cheesecake better.

Just a few days ago I had baked nankhatai by following the recipe from my very dear multi talented friend Archana Chauhan’s blog https://apinchoflyfe.com/2019/01/12/kesar-naankhatai/

These kesar nankhatai complimented cheesecake so well.

I wanted to create a small border around the cheesecake along with the base from the cookies. I had seen some pictures of cheesecake like this, and this brown border had always attracted me….!!! Cheesecake looked very pretty with this brown border and with the addition of khoya this Cheesecake became a perfect symphony of Indo-Western cuisine culture!!!

IMG_20190228_152339178.jpg

IMG_20190228_152232853.jpg

Ingredients :

Crust

200 gm crushed nankhatai
3 tbsp melted butter

Filling

200 gm cream cheese
200 gm mawa/khoya
2 tbsp milk
100 gm powdered sugar
1/2 tbsp cardamom powder
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 tsp rose essence (optional)

Topping/Decoration

Cardamom powder
Roasted mixed nuts
Dried rose petles
Saffron strands

Process:

Crush nankhatai in a zip lock bag and keep it in a bowl. Add melted butter in it and mix nicely.

img_20190225_153736509

In a springform tin spread this nankhatai mixture evenly and press it nicely with the help of  back of the spoon. If you want to add a little border at the sides of cheesecake, spread nankhatai mixture slightly at the sides of the tin and press there also. Keep the tin in the fridge for half an hour so that mixture becomes firm.

img_20190225_160257222

In a pan add milk and khoya and keep stirring it on sim heat until khoya turns into thick paste consistency. Switch off gas and let it cool down.

img_20190225_161753477

Whip up cream cheese till it is smooth and then start adding caster sugar in small portions. You can reduce or add sugar as per your taste bud. Add cardamom powder and keep this ready cream cheese in a separate bowl.

img_20190225_171756127

img_20190225_172601924

Now whip up 1/2 cup of whipping cream till it gets stiff consistency.

img_20190225_173857687

Now gently add cream cheese and khoya in whipping cream. If you are interested, can add rose essence. I did not add because I wanted the fragrance of dried rose petals.

img_20190225_174911914

By now cookie mixture is settled down firmly – take out the tin from the fridge and spread evenly cream cheese, whipping cream and khoya mix in the tin. Keep it in the fridge for 4-5 hours or overnight to firm up.

img_20190225_175622788

Toast some mixed nuts and crush them. When cheesecake firms up, take it out from the fridge, loosen the pan and take out cheesecake carefully and keep it in a separate plate. Decorate it on the top around the edges with crushed toasted nuts and dried rose petals. In the middle of the top sprinkle cardamom powder and some strands of kesar to add some more beauty and flavor.

Enjoy this delicious fusion dessert and if you have a big generous heart, share it with your friends !!

I loved a lot this slightly high brown border around it!

IMG_20190228_152326985.jpg

IMG_20190228_152813889.jpgDid you like my experiment for creating a fusion dessert …

I would be glad to hear from you all ❤️

img_20190228_152857588-1

 

Coconut Cheesecake

I decided to bake coconut cookies and chocolate chips cookies in the evening.

I should never plan to bake anything in the evening…my first mistake.

Dinner preparations got pushed to a later hour, so I decided to prepare cookies after dinner…… my second mistake.

Baking cookies is not a big project but I prefer to cook or bake alone, otherwise I easily get distracted and end up forgetting to add some or other ingredient. That’s why I always bake in the afternoon when I am alone with my oven.

In the evening  my daughter Apoorva is back from school and she starts telling her whole day stories. Then Manish is back from the office and TV is on. So I never bake anything during these hours. But that day I thought that as now I am baking cookies for such a long time so I wouldn’t do anything wrong. Basically what can go wrong in a cookie recipe and many people bake cookies while watching TV?

But I was definitely wrong. I was watching a comedy show on TV and completely forgot to add sugar in the coconut cookies. I had powdered sugar and left it in the jar.  Took rest of the ingredients with me and kept everything on dining table. After baking first batch I wanted to taste warm cookie and realised my mistake!

These cookies had very mild sweet taste of coconut, but I knew very well that Manish is not going to eat them… I felt so sad for wasting so much of butter. I just couldn’t find any other way to use these sugar-less cookies.

Next day while scrolling down Instagram posts I saw one cheese cake post and immediately knew how I am going to use my sugar-less coconut cookies. I had cream cheese, desiccated coconut, whipping cream and condensed milk in my pantry. I decided to go ahead with these ingredients only for a no-bake coconut cheese cake.

IMG_20190111_145404131.jpg

In India we don’t get good quality dairy based whipping cream. All bakers use non dairy whipping cream of different brands. Amul brand has dairy based whipping cream in red colour pack but it is not available in all shops. Once when I saw this pack at my nearest grocery store, I bought a small pack to try it out. For coconut cheese cake I decided to use this, but while whipping, realised that it is taking its own sweet time to get stiff peaks. I gave up in between and thought that it might set in 5-6 hours in the fridge. It did set, but was not completely firm. That’s why you can see in the pictures that the top part of whipping cream in cheese cake is slightly loose from the sides. So if you try this cheesecake, go ahead with non-dairy whipping cream. We can add melted white chocolate or agar agar for loose cream to set firm.

For flavor, along with roasted coconut flakes, I added orange zest with whipping cream to balance sweet taste. Orange zest gave delicious fresh flavor and roasted coconut flakes added wonderful crunch along with cookie base.

Overall, I really loved and enjoyed this simple no-bake cheese cake experiment which was done only to use my sugar-less coconut cookies.

IMG_20190111_143339407.jpg

 

Ingredients :

250 gm sugar less coconut cookies
3 tbsp condensed milk
30 gm butter

400 gm cream cheese
70 gm castor sugar

200 gm whipping cream
60 gm castor sugar

1+1/2 tsp orange zest
1/4 cup roasted desiccated coconut flakes

 

Process :

Keep coconut cookies in a zip lock bag and crush them nicely.IMG_20190110_123943838

In a bowl add crushed cookies, condensed milk and butter, mix well and spread this mixture evenly in a spring form cake tin. Press this mixture nicely with the back of spoon and let it settle down in the fridge for 20-30 minutes.

IMG_20190110_125648902

IMG_20190110_130256792

Whip up cream cheese till it is smooth and then start adding caster sugar in small portions. You can reduce or add sugar as per your taste bud.  Keep this ready cream cheese in a seprate bowl.

IMG_20190110_153219518

Grate zest from the oranges.

IMG_20190110_194155666

Now whip up whipping cream and in small portions keep adding caster sugar. I have used dairy based Amul red pack whipping cream, so I have to add sugar. If you are using non dairy whipping cream, sugar is not required. Mix orange zest nicely in the cream (coconut cream can also be added).

IMG_20190110_195549309

By now cookie mixture is settled down firmly – take out the pan from the fridge and spread evenly cream cheese.

IMG_20190110_153943642

Sprinkle some toasted coconut flakes.

IMG_20190110_160626282.jpg

Now spread whipping cream evenly.

IMG_20190110_200037343.jpg

Again sprinkle toasted coconut flakes all over the cream and keep the pan in the fridge for 5-6 hours or overnight.

IMG_20190110_202056209.jpg

Later take out the pan from the fridge  and carefully take out cheese cake from the spring form tin and give it 5-7 minutes standing time because it would be too cold.

IMG_20190111_143253583.jpg

Enjoy no-bake coconut cheese cake with delicious fresh orange flavor and a wonderul coconut cookies crumb with a crunch of toasted coconut flakes.

 

IMG_20190111_145638480.jpg

IMG_20190111_145438485.jpg