Finger Millet has been an ingredient that I have not been familiar with, growing up. It has not been a part of my childhood, and in my opinion, the first time I ever saw it was when my older daughter was born. My mother in law and my mother always said that Finger Millet Porridge constitutes a very healthy first food for little babies. I do remember making porridge and feeding the little one and then as she graduated to rice cereals, and rice , I forgot all about it. My mother in law who lives in Srirangam, always has access to health foods, and believes in reconstituting food from scratch. Although, the processed food boom has caught on there too, she prefers to still mill grind her own rice, pulses etc. I had always wanted to use Finger Millet in my cooking and when Priya offered it as an ingredient for the Shhh Cooking Challenge, I used the oportunity to make pancakes with Sprouted Ragi Flour.
Finger Millet, also known as Ragi, is cultivated in drier parts of the world – mainly in Asia and Africa. Ragi has a distinct taste and is widely used in Southern Indian and Ethiopian dishes. Ragi is a rich source of Calcium, Iron, Protein, Fiber and other minerals. The cereal has low fat content and contains mainly unsaturated fat. It is easy to digest and does not contain gluten; people who are sensitive to gluten can easily consume Fnger Millet. Ragi is considered one of the most nutritious cereals.
This pancake is extremely versatile as you can make it with rava and wheat flour, rice flour and wheat flour, brown rice flour and rava along with the proportion of sprouted ragi flour. Regular ragi flour would work as well too.
1/3 Cup Sprouted Ragi Flour.
1/4 Cup Rice Flour.
1/4 Cup Wheat Flour.
1/2 Cup Jaggery.
1/2 Cup Milk.
1 Tsp Sugar.
1 Ripe Banana.
1 Tsp Cardamom Powder.
- Warm the milk and dissolve the jaggery and sugar in it. Keep aside.
- Mash the ripe banana and set aside.
- Mix all the dry flours, add the cardamom, and mix it well.
- Slowly add the dry flours to the milk jaggery mixture.
- Add the mashed banana.
- Adjust the batter consistency untiil its resembles a thick batter not too runny.
- Set aside for at least ten minutes as the bananas, work the batter in aerating it.
- Pour in to thick pancakes on a heated tava, add ghee/butter and cook on both sides.
- Serve with warm maple syrup, honey, jam or fruit compote.
“You can`t buy happiness, but you can buy ice cream…and that’s kind of the same thing”
The earliest memories of ice cream are the softy cones that I remember having in T.Nagar on the footpath. Soft, sweet, melting, creamy and cold, and stuffed hurriedly in to crisp cones. The exhaustion of the 2 mile walk to get there, the sweltering heat, the jostling crowds are all forgotten for a few dreamy minutes, licking on cold cold ice cream. I remember graduating to the more “pricey” Kwality Walls Chocobars at college and during my post grad days. Something still pulls me to the softy cones in T.Nagar! This trip when we visited India, I simply loved the Naturals Ice Cream that I tasted with my sister S at HSR Layout in Bangalore. My favourite of them all was “Jackfruit” and of course “Tender Coconut”. I loved the tender coconut ice cream with pieces of tender coconut in each and every scoop! My favourite ice cream has been the ones at Ted Drew`s in St.Louis, Missouri. We loved to drive there and order their “concrete” which was so thick, that they would serve it upside down sometimes! I had been wanting to try out my own whacky combinations and recently invested in the Kitchen Aid Ice Cream Maker Attachment. No, its not just another gadget that’s gonna sit on the that top shelf above the refrigerator. This gives me pure creamy tasty ice creams, which I can make with ingredients on hand, and no preservatives or additives.
Today`s recipe is from this amazing book called Jeni`s Splendid Ice Creams at Home , that uses no eggs but a secret ingredient – Cream Cheese! Her methods are very different and bring out the intermingling flavours very well.
15 Ripe Strawberries sliced.
1/4 Cup Sugar.
3 Tbsp Lemon Juice.
11/2 Cups 2% Milk.
2 Tbsp Corn Starch / Custard Powder.
4 Tbsp Softened Cream Cheese.
1/8 Tsp Sea Salt.
1 1/4 Cup Heavy Cream.
3/4 Cup Sugar.
2 Tbsp Corn Sugar.
1/4 Cup Buttermilk.
- Preheat the oven to 375F. Combine the sugar and the sliced strawberries and bake for about 8-10 mins until softened. When cooled, puree with lemon juice. No need to add any water.
- Mix 2 Tbsp of milk with the custard powder and set aside.
- In a mixing bowl cream together the room temperature cream cheese and salt. Set aside.
- In a sauce pan, add the remaining milk. cream, sugar and corn syrup and bring to a rolling boil and keep it that way for about 2-3 minutes.
- Remove from heat and slowly whisk in the milk+cornstarch mixture.
- Bring back to medium low on the stove and boil until slightly thickened. Set aside.
- Slowly pour this thickened milk mixture in to the cream cheese bowl and incorporate. Add the pureed strawberries and the buttermilk and blend well.
- Create an ice bath with ice cubes and chilled water and keep ready. Pour this ice cream mix in to a gallon ziploc bag, seal it and place in the ice bath.
- Now pour this cooled ice cream mixture in to the chilled ice cream container or as per directions given.
- Churn for about 20-25 minutes until thick and creamy!
- Transfer in to a storage container and freeze for about 4-5 hours.
- Remove from freezer and thaw for about 5 minutes before serving fresh creamy strawberry Ice Cream.