Aloo Raita| Potato Raita

Aloo Raita refers to a condiment made with potatoes and curd, with a few spices added in. This might feel like a weird combination of ingredients to some but, let me tell you, it tastes absolutely lovely!

All of us in our family are big fans of raita. Come summer, and raita of different sorts begin to make an appearance on our lunch table more frequently than ever. They are super cooling and very refreshing, after all.

Aloo Raita is a relatively lesser known variety of the dish. It goes very well as a side with rotis and pulav/biryani. Let’s see how to prepare it, the way it is done in my family!

Aloo Raita| Potato Raita

But first, what is a raita?

Raita‘, for the uninitiated, means a side dish prepared with different fruits and/or vegetables and curd, an integral part of Indian meals.

There are a vast number of raita prepared across the length and breadth of India, with variations from one place to another. Check out the recipes for Boondi Raita, Methi Raita and Dangar Pachadi (a forgotten Urad Dal Raita from Tamilnadu) on my blog.

What is called ‘raita‘ in most of the northern parts of India becomes ‘Thayir Pachadi‘ in Tamilnadu and ‘Mosaru Oggarne‘ in Karnataka. The ‘Arachu Kalakki‘ of Kerala, ‘Dahi Ki Chutney‘ of Andhra Pradesh, and ‘Kichadi‘ of Kerala are also types of raita.

Like I was saying earier, Aloo Raita is a comparatively lesser known type of raita.

Ingredients used in Aloo Raita

Potatoes and curd are the two major ingredients used in Aloo Raita. Potatoes are cooked first, then peeled and chopped, after which they are mixed into whisked curd.

Apart from regular table salt, some roasted cumin (jeera) powder, red chilli powder, black salt and powdered sugar are also used in this raita, for flavour.

The tempering for this Aloo Raita is simple – just some mustard seeds and asafoetida in oil.

Finely chopped fresh coriander is used to garnish the raita.

How to make Aloo Raita

Please find the detailed proceedure below.

Top left, centre and right: Steps 1, 2 and 3, Below top right and bottom right: Steps 4 and 5, Bottom centre and left: Steps 6 and 7

Ingredients (serves 2-4):

1. 2 medium-sized potatoes

2. 1/4 teaspoon black salt

3. Salt to taste

4. Red chilli powder to taste

5. 1/2 teaspoon roasted cumin (jeera) powder

6. 3/4 teaspoon powdered sugar

7. 1 cup thick curd

8. 1 tablespoon finely chopped coriander

9. 1/2 tablespoon oil

10. 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds

11. 2 pinches of asafoetida


1. Wash the potatoes well under running water, to remove all the dirt from them. Cut them into halves and transfer them to a wide vessel. Add in enough water to cover the potatoes fully. Place the vessel in a pressure cooker. Pressure cook on high flame for 2 whistles. Let the pressure come down naturally.

2. When the pressure from the cooker has completely gone down, get the potatoes out. Drain out all the water. Let the potatoes cool down fully, then peel and chop them into cubes. Take the potato cubes in a large mixing bowl.

3. To the potatoes, add black salt, salt, red chilli powder, roasted cumin powder and powdered sugar. Mix gently to ensure that all the potato pieces are evenly coated in the spice powders.

4. Whisk the curd along with a little water, to make it smooth.

5. Add the whisked curd to the potatoes in the mixing bowl.

6. Add in the finely chopped coriander.

7. Now, we will prepare the tempering. Heat the oil in a small tempering pan. Add in the mustard seeds, and allow them to sputter. Then add in the asafoetida and switch off the gas. Add this tempering to the mixing bowl. Mix all the ingredients in the bowl gently. Your Aloo Raita is ready to serve.

Dietary guidelines

This Aloo Raita recipe is completely vegetarian. There is a small amount of oil and powdered sugar used here.

This raita is free of onion and garlic.

It is not vegan because of the use of dairy-based curd and, hence, not suitable to those following a plant-based diet. I think you could make this with plant-based curd as well, though I have not tried that out.

To make this dish gluten-free, simply skip the asafoetida used in the tempering. Most Indian brands of asafoetida contain wheat flour, so it is best to avoid them when one is following a gluten-free diet. However, if you can find 100% gluten-free asafoetida, do go ahead and use it.

Tips & Tricks

1. Use curd that is slightly sour, but not overly so, for best results.

2. Adjust the quantity of water depending upon the consistency of the raita that you require.

3. Adjust the quantities of red chilli powder, salt, powdered sugar and roasted cumin powder as per personal taste preferences.

4. Do not overcook the potatoes. They should be cooked through but not overly mushy.

5. Do not skip the sugar. It adds a lovely flavour to the raita.

6. You can crumble the cooked potatoes and add them to the raita too. I prefer chopping them into cubes, the way I have done here.

7. This Aloo Raita is best made fresh and consumed immediately after preparation.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!


Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki| Amla Raita

Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki is a unique dish made using gooseberries (amla) and curd, from the city of Palakkad in Kerala. It is a side dish which is the specialty of the Palakkad Iyers residing in this region. I learnt this recipe from my mother-in-law and, in today’s post, am going to share with you all how to go about making it.

This is a simple but beautiful dish, though I must say the taste takes a little getting used to. My husband and I adore it! I love relishing it with tiffin items like dosa or upma, while the husband likes having it with plain, hot rice. It can also be served as part of an elaborate meal, especially along with other Palakkad Iyer specials like Molagootal and Poduthuval.

Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki or Amla Raita

Arachu Kalakki trivia

Arachu Kalakki‘ is a classic Palakkad Iyer dish, which can be made using a few different types of fruits and vegetables. Gooseberries, elephant-foot yam (‘suran‘ in Hindi, ‘senaikizhangu‘ in Tamil), and raw mango are the most commonly used.

‘Arachu Kalakki‘ is Palakkad Tamil for ‘grind and mix’, which is exactly how this dish is prepared. The preparation of arachu kalakki involves very little cooking, which makes it the perfect side dish for the hot months of summer – you don’t have to stand in front of the gas stove for long hours, cooking. It is delicious, super cooling and refreshing too!

Either fresh or preserved fruits/vegetables can be used to make arachu kalakki. In traditional Palakkad homes, seasonal fruits like gooseberries and small raw mangoes are preserved in salted water (brine) – they stay well for a long time when stored this way, and can be used as needed. My mother-in-law sometimes uses gooseberries preserved in brine to make Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki, but I almost always use the raw ones whenever they are readily available in the markets.

Ingredients used in Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki

So, the gooseberries (preserved or fresh) are ground to a slightly coarse puree, along with coconut and green chillies, and mixed with curd to make Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki. If you are using fresh gooseberries, they need to be cooked before using them, while the preserved ones can be used as is. This arachu kalakki is full of the natural goodness of gooseberries, whichever way you use them.

A simple tempering of mustard seeds, asafoetida and curry leaves in coconut oil is added to the Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki, once it is ready.

This method of preparation is similar to the making of raita. It would, therefore, not be wrong to call Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki as Nelikkai Thayir Pachadi (Tamil for ‘Amla Raita‘).

How to make Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki

Different families have their own little touches in the making of arachu kalakki, but the base ingredients remain more or less the same. Here’s how I make the Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki, a la my mother-in-law.

Ingredients (serves 4-5):

1. 4 medium-sized gooseberries (amla)

2. 1/4 cup fresh coconut slivers

3. 2 green chillies or as per taste

4. 1-1/2 cups fresh thick curd or as per taste

5. Salt to taste

To temper:

1. 1/2 tablespoon coconut oil

2. 3/4 teaspoon mustard seeds

3. 2 pinches of asafoetida

4. A sprig of curry leaves


Top left, centre and right: Steps 1, 2 and 3, Bottom left: Step 4, Bottom centre and right: Step 5

1. Wash the gooseberries well under running water. Pat dry using a cotton cloth.

2. Place the gooseberries in a wide vessel. Do not add in any water. Take about a cup of water in a pressure cooker bottom and place it on a high flame. Place the vessel with the gooseberries inside the pressure cooker. Close the cooker and put the whistle on. Allow the gooseberries to cook on high flame for 4 whistles. Let the pressure release naturally.

3. When the pressure from the cooker has completely gone down, open it and get the gooseberries out. Allow them to cool down enough to handle.

4. When the gooseberries have completely cooled down, press them gently and separate the segments. The segments will get separated very easily. Remove and discard the seed.

5. Place the gooseberry segments in a mixer jar. Add in the coconut slivers. Chop up the green chillies roughly and add them to the mixer jar too. Grind everything together to an almost smooth puree, using a little water.

Top left and right: Step 6, Bottom right: Step 7, Bottom left: Step 8

6. Take the gooseberry puree in a large mixing bowl. Add in the curd and salt to taste. Add about 1/2 cup water or as needed.

7. Mix everything up well.

8. Now, we will prepare the tempering. Heat the oil in a small tempering pan. Add in the mustard seeds, and allow them to sputter. Then, add in the asafoetida and curry leaves. Allow them to stay in for a couple of seconds. Pour the tempering into the gooseberry-curd mixture. Mix well. Your Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki is ready – serve it as an accompaniment to rice/upma/dosas or as part of an elaborate meal spread.

Dietary guidelines

This dish is completely vegetarian, made using very little oil.

It is NOT vegan because of the use of dairy-based curd. You could try making it using vegan (plant-based) curd, but I have never tried that out.

To make this Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki gluten-free, skip the asafoetida used in the tempering. Most Indian brands of asafoetida do contain wheat flour and are, therefore, best avoided when one is following a gluten-free diet. If you do find 100% gluten-free asafoetida, however, you can definitely go ahead and use it.

Tips & Tricks

1. Use fresh gooseberries (amla), which are firm and without any blemishes.

2. You can use amla that has been soaked in brine, as is commonly done in many parts of India. In case the amla has soaked well and is quite soft, you can grind it as is – there’s no need to cook it. In this case, you would need to be cautious while adding salt as the amla would be a bit salty anyways.

3. Do not add any water to the amla while pressure-cooking it. 4 whistles in the pressure cooker, and it’s perfectly done – not overcooked, just right.

4. Adjust the quantity of green chillies, salt and coconut as per personal taste preferences.

5. For best results, use fresh curd that is not very sour.

6. Adjust the amount of water you use depending upon the consistency of the Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki that you require. It is supposed to be thick but not overly so, runny but not too watery.

7. You may add a small piece of ginger while grinding the cooked gooseberries, coconut and green chillies. I usually don’t do so.

8. Use coconut oil for the tempering – it adds a beautiful flavour to the Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki.

9. Do not grind the gooseberries, coconut and green chillies too finely. Let the puree be slightly coarse, for best results.

10. This Nelikkai Arachu Kalakki is best prepared and consumed fresh. However, any leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator in a clean, dry, air-tight refrigerator for a day.

Looking for other recipes using gooseberries?

Check out these posts on my blog:

Arinelikkai Thokku| Instant Star Gooseberry Pickle

Nelikkai Urugai| Spicy Gooseberry Pickle

Nelikkai Sadam| Gooseberry Rice

Nelikkai Sweet Urugai| Sweet Gooseberry Pickle

Gajar Amla Salad| Tangy Carrot Salad With Gooseberry

I’m hugely intrigued by this Nellikai (gooseberry) Chutney Pudi from my friend Preethi’s recipe blog too – can’t wait to try it out!

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!

Mambazha Payasam| Aam Ki Kheer

Mambazha Payasam is a delicious kheer made using ripe mangoes, one of the best ways to use the fruit in the summer months. It is an easy-peasy dessert to make, too.

The season for mangoes is here, and I plan to use the ‘King of Fruits’ in as many dishes as possible. Mambazha Payasam (Tamil) or Aam Ki Kheer (Hindi) is one of my most favourite desserts using mangoes. Today, let me share with you all the recipe for this kheer, the way I make it.

Do try it out for the upcoming Tamil New Year or Vishu. I’m sure you will not be disappointed.

Mambazha Payasam or Mango kheer
Mambazha Payasam or Aam Ki Kheer

I have shared several other delightful recipes with ripe mangoes on my blog so far. You might want to take a look at them too.

Mambazha Pulissery| Mambazha Sambar| Fajeto| Mango Kesari| Ripe Mango Dip| Chilli & Mango Grilled Cheese Sandwich| Stuffed Mango Kulfi| Mango & Hung Curd Parfait| Mango Bruschetta| Ripe Mango Hummus With Sriracha| Mango Lassi| Fruit Custard

Kalyani’s Thai Yellow Mango Curry sounds so very delicious, I’m surely going to try it out this summer!

A look at the ingredients used

Mambazha Payasam is made by cooking milk till it reduces and thickens, after which ripe mangoes are mixed into it. Check the detailed recipe given below to understand how to go about this without the milk splitting.

Milk and mangoes are the two major ingredients in this payasam. Full-fat, dairy-based milk is preferred. The slow cooking of the milk renders it creamy and delicious and, along with ripe mango, it makes for a heavenly summer dessert.

Regular refined sugar is used to sweeten the payasam. A bit of saffron is added in for colour, as well as cardamom powder for flavouring.

Mambazha Payasam Recipe

I prepare the Mambazha Payasam on the lines of the Kheer Komola i.e. Bengali Orange Kheer that I had shared some time ago. That is another beautiful fruit-based payasam, you all!

The detailed recipe for Mambazha Payasam follows.

Ingredients (serves 4-6):

1. 1 litre full-fat milk

2. 6 tablespoons sugar or to taste

3. A pinch of saffron

4. 1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder

5. 2 medium-sized ripe mangoes


How to make Mambazha Payasam
Top left and right: Steps 1 and 2, Below top right: Step 3, Bottom right: Step 4, Bottom left: Step 5

1. Take the milk in a heavy-bottomed pan. Place it on high flame.

2. Allow the milk to come to a boil, then reduce heat to medium.

3. Add in the sugar. Mix well.

4. Drop in the saffron strands into the milk.

5. Continue to cook on medium heat till the milk reduces in volume to about half. You will need to stir intermittently to prevent sticking to the bottom of the pan. Scrape down the cream that forms on the sides of the pan, using a spatula, back into the milk. In 15-20 minutes, the milk would have reduced. Switch off gas at this stage.

How to make Mambazha Payasam
Top left: Step 6, Top centre and right, bottom left and centre: Step 7, Bottom right: Step 8

6. Mix in the cardamom powder. Now, allow the milk mixture to cool down completely.

7. When the milk mixture has cooled down fully, peel the 2 ripe mangoes. Chop the flesh of one into small pieces and add it to the milk. Chop the flesh of the other mango to pieces, grind coarsely in a mixer jar (or use your hands to make a rough puree) and add this to the milk too. Mix well. Your Mambazha Payasam or Aam Ki Kheer is ready.

8. Chill the kheer for at least a couple of hours in the refrigerator before serving.

Dietary guidelines

This kheer is made using milk from the dairy and is, therefore, NOT vegan. Vegans can use plant-based milk instead, I think, though I have never tried that out in this recipe.

This Mambazha Payasam is naturally gluten-free.

It uses refined sugar and is a high-calorie dessert, and is meant for occasional consumption in small amounts only, especially for people with diabetes and weight-watchers. I have not tried making this particular dessert with any alternative sweetener.

Tips & Tricks

1. Adjust the quantity of sugar you use depending upon how sweet the mangoes are.

2. Use mangoes that are completely ripe, sweet, fragrant and juicy. Do not use fibrous varieties of mango. Banganapalli and Kesar are my favourite varieties to use in this kheer.

3. The Aam Ki Kheer will thicken up upon cooling, so make sure you switch off the flame when it is still on the runnier side.

4. If the kheer gets too thick, you may dilute it using some boiled and cooled milk.

5. Use full-fat milk for best results. I have used Nandini full-cream milk here.

6. You can use a mixer to puree one mango or do the same using your hands. For best results, make a coarse puree – do not make a fine paste.

7. This Aam Ki Kheer is best prepared fresh and consumed on the same day of preparation.

8. Make sure you use a heavy-bottomed pan to cook the kheer.

9. This kheer tastes best after chilling for at least a couple of hours. Please plan ahead and schedule the preparation accordingly.

10. Allow the milk mixture to cool down completely before adding the mango to it, otherwise it might split.

11. I prefer using fresh ripe mangoes when in season. However, if you don’t have access to fresh mangoes where you live, you can use canned.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!

Bangalore Hotel Style Coconut Chutney| Green Coconut Chutney

If you have eaten often enough at the small local restaurants – called ‘Darshinis‘ – that are spread across Bangalore, chances are you would have been served this delectable green-coloured coconut chutney along with your thatte idlis, open butter masala dosas, vadas or khara bath. This is one of the ways coconut chutney is made in Karnataka, sometimes with a tinge of sweet to it. I adore this chutney and, in today’s post, am going to share exactly how to go about making it.

Bangalore Hotel Style Coconut Chutney. Just how pretty is that green?!

What goes into Bangalore Hotel Style Coconut Chutney?

This chutney is a variation of the Basic Coconut Chutney recipe I had shared on the blog some time ago.

The Bangalore Style Coconut Chutney uses fresh grated coconut, fried gram (‘pottukadalai‘ in Tamil), green chillies and a bit of ginger. The green colour comes from the addition of fresh coriander (sometimes mint). Often, a dash of sugar or jaggery is added for a hint of sweetness. Lemon juice is used to gently sour the chutney.

The tempering is a simple one – mustard, asafoetida, curry leaves and dry red chillies in some oil.

It is best prepared fresh, and goes very well with ‘tiffin’ items like idlis, dosas, vadas and upma/khara bath. It is super easy to make, and you can customise the consistency as per your requirements (check the ‘Tips & Tricks’ section for this!).

How to make Bangalore Hotel Style Coconut Chutney

Here’s the detailed recipe.

Ingredients (makes about 1 cup):

1. 1/2 cup grated fresh coconut

2. 1/4 cup fried gram

3. 1/4 cup fresh coriander, roughly chopped

4. 1-1/2 green chillies, roughly chopped

5. A 1-inch piece of ginger, roughly chopped

6. Salt to taste

7. 1/2 tablespoon jaggery powder

8. Juice of 1/2 lemon or to taste

For tempering:

1. 1/2 tablespoon oil

2. 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds

3. 2 pinches of asafoetida

4. 1 sprig of curry leaves

5. 2-3 dry red chillies


Top left and right: Steps 1 and 2, Below top right and bottom right: Steps 3 and 4, Bottom left: Step 5

1. Put together the basic ingredients needed for the chutney – grated coconut, fried gram, chopped coriander and green chillies, peeled and chopped ginger. Transfer them to a mixer jar.

2. To the mixer jar, add salt to taste and the jaggery powder. Add in just enough water to help with the grinding.

3. Grind everything together to a mostly smooth, slightly coarse mixture. Transfer to a serving bowl.

4. Add lemon juice. Mix well.

5. Now, we will prepare the tempering for the chutney. Heat oil in a small tempering pan. Add in the mustard, and allow to sputter. Reduce heat to low-medium and add in the asafoetida, curry leaves and dry red chillies. Mix. Let them stay in for a few seconds, without burning. Transfer the tempering to the chutney in the serving bowl, and mix well. Bangalore Hotel Style Coconut Chutney is ready – serve with ‘tiffin’ dishes like idli, dosa, vada or upma.

Other chutney recipes on the blog

You might be interested in taking a look at the other chutney recipes on my blog too.

Bombay Chutney is an interesting one, made with gram flour.

Palli Chutney is an Andhra-style chutney made using peanuts, and tastes absolutely delectable.

Sutta Kathrikkai Thogayal is a beautiful eggplant chutney with a rustic smoky flavour.

Kale Thogayal is a Tam-Brahm chutney using the very nutritious kale.

Pineapple Thogayal is a lip-smackingly delish chutney made with pineapple.

Momo Achar is a lovely Sikkim-style peanut chutney for momos.

Karonde Ki Chutney is a unique sweet-and-sour relish made with ‘karondas‘ (‘kalakkai‘ in Tamil).

Kale Angoor Ki Chutney is another sort of relish, made with black grapes.

Anarosher Chaatni is a Bengali-style chutney made using ripe pineapple.

Meethi Chutney is the sweet tamarind chutney that goes into different types of chaat.

Hari Chutney is the mint-y green chutney that is used in chaat, sandwiches and the like.

My friend and fellow food blogger Sujata ji has shared a very different and interesting recipe for Mint & Coriander Chutney – do take a look!

Is this chutney vegan and gluten-free?

This recipe for Bangalore Hotel Style Chutney is completely vegetarian and vegan. It is suited to people following a plant-based diet.

Most commercially available Indian brands of asafoetida do contain wheat flour. It is best to avoid asafoetida in the tempering, in case you wish to make this chutney gluten-free.

Tips & Tricks

1. Adjust the quantity of green chillies depending upon how spicy you want the chutney to be.

2. You may skip the jaggery powder if you don’t prefer it. However, I would highly recommend using it because of the lovely flavour it adds to the chutney.

3. Sugar can be used in place of the jaggery I have used here.

4. You may use a small piece of soaked and de-seeded tamarind while grinding the chutney, in place of the lemon juice. However, this might affect the colour of the chutney. I prefer using lemon juice.

5. Use just a little water, as needed, for grinding the chutney. Too much water will cause the chutney to become too watery. However if you want to keep the chutney runny, do add in more water by all means. Adjust the salt and spice level accordingly. We prefer keeping this chutney thickish – not too watery and runny, but not overly thick either.

6. We prefer grinding the chutney mostly smooth, just slightly coarse.

7. For a taste variation, substitute the fresh coriander used in the above recipe with fresh mint leaves. You could also use a mix of mint and coriander.

8. This chutney is best prepared fresh, just before serving. Any leftover chutney can be stored on a clean, dry, air-tight box, refrigerated, for 2-3 days.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!

Strawberry Cream Recipe| Strawberries And Cream

It’s strawberry season, and I absolutely had to go ahead and use them in one of our favourite desserts – fruit cream. I made Strawberry Cream recently, and it was such a huge hit with the family!

Strawberries and cream are a classic combination, and this dessert is just the perfect foil to bring this beautiful pair together. Sweet and creamy and berrylicious, mildly tart, Strawberry Cream is a real treat to the tastebuds. It’s super easy to put together too. In today’s post, let me share with you my Strawberry Cream recipe. Try it out, and I’m sure you will fall in love with it too. 🙂

Delicious Strawberry Cream!

I love cooking with strawberries and have several recipes for the same on the blog. Here’s a basic strawberry jam and here’s a spicy one made with chilli. This strawberry and grapes salad turns out beautifully, and so does this rose and strawberry lassi. Here’s a South Indian strawberry gojju, and here’s a lovely pink strawberry kesari bath. This home-made strawberry butter and chocolate ganache tart with strawberries are great ways to use the fruit too.

Ingredients used in Strawberry Cream

Fruit cream is quite a popular dessert in Indian restaurants. It is, in effect, this simple dessert where fruits are served in a delicious, creamy base. This can be made with various types of fruits. I have started a few different variations of fruit cream on my blog so far – check out this recipe for Mixed Fruit Cream With Condensed Milk and this one for Mixed Fruit Cream With Mascarpone. This Strawberry Cream is made in a slightly different way.

This recipe needs just three basic ingredients – fresh strawberries, sugar and whipping cream. I first created a compote with strawberries and sugar, let it cool down and then mixed it with the cream – it’s that simple! And, let me tell you, it tastes ah-maa-zingg! 🙂

Strawberry Cream Recipe

Here’s how to go about it.

Ingredients (serves 3-4):

1. 250 grams fresh strawberries + 1-2 for decoration (optional)

2. 1/4 cup of sugar or as needed

3. Powdered sugar, as needed

4. 250 ml whipping cream


Top left, centre and right: Steps 1, 2 and 3, Bottom left, centre and right: Steps 4, 5 and 6

1. We will start by making a strawberry compote. Wash 250 grams of strawberries under running water and pat dry using a cotton cloth. Chop off the stems and green leaves. Chop the strawberries into small pieces and transfer them to a heavy-bottomed pan.

2. Add 1/4 cup of sugar to the pan. Mix well, using your hands. Leave the pan to rest for 15-20 minutes.

3. In 15-20 minutes, the fruit would have started to release water. At this stage, place the pan on medium flame. Let it get slowly heated up.

4. Continue to cook the mixture on medium flame. The fruit will start disintegrating and thickening. Stir intermittently.

5. Mash the fruit lightly using a potato masher.

6. Switch off gas when the mixture has thickened up but is still slightly runny. Remember that it will thicken up further with time. The cooking should take 10-12 minutes in total. Your strawberry compote is ready. Allow it to cool down completely.

Top left and right: Step 7 and 8, Below top right and bottom right: Step 9, Bottom left: Step 10

7. When the compote has cooled down fully, we will begin making the Strawberry Cream. Take 250 ml of whipping cream in a large mixing bowl. Whisk gently for a few minutes, by which time it will become fluffy and thicken slightly.

8. At this stage, add in the cooled strawberry compote we prepared earlier. Mix it well into the cream.

9. Taste and add in powdered sugar if needed. Mix well. Your Strawberry Cream is ready.

10. The Strawberry Cream can be served immediately, but it tastes best when chilled for about 1/2 hour before serving. Use the additional 1-2 strawberries to decorate the dessert before serving (if you prefer).

Tips & Tricks

1. I have used regular refined sugar here, both in the granular and powdered form.

2. Adjust the quantity of sugar you use in the compote depending upon how sweet/sour the fruit is and also upon your personal taste preferences. I needed to add in a little powdered sugar later, but you may skip it if you think it is not required.

3. Use fresh strawberries that are firm and not damaged or squishy. Ideally, strawberries that are a good mix of sweet and sour work best in this recipe.

4. You may add a few drops of vanilla essence to the cream if you so prefer. I have not used it.

5. You can prepare the compote in advance and keep it refrigerated. This way, you can prepare the Strawberry Cream whenever you want to, within minutes. The compote stays well for at least a month when stored refrigerated in a clean, dry, air-tight box.

6. Remember to keep the compote on the runnier side. It will thicken up further with time. If it gets too thick, you will not be able to stir it well into the cream.

7. When the strawberries aren’t even a bit sour, the compote can turn out too sweet. In that case, you may add a dash of lemon to the compote after it has been cooked and the gas has been switched off.

8. I have not pureed the strawberries, so that we get little chunks of the fruit while eating the dessert. If you so prefer, you may puree the fruit completely, like I have done in my Strawberry Jam recipe here.

9. If you have home-made strawberry jam ready, you can use it to make this Strawberry Cream instead of making the compote from scratch. I have done so quite a few times actually, and been very happy with the results. In that case, I like chopping up a couple of large strawberries and adding them to the cream just before serving. Store-bought jam is thicker due to the addition of pectin and I’m not sure if it would yield itself just as well to the making of this dessert – I prefer using home-made jam or compote only.

10. Use good, heavy cream to make this dessert. I have used Amul whipping cream here. Since I have used a wire whisk, the cream did not get too thick after whisking. If you are using an electric beater, you might want to beat the cream till it gets stiff peaks. I rather prefer the former. With the addition of the strawberry compote, the whisked cream turned just the right amount of thick.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!