Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Fish Biryani

Fish Biryani~Machi no Palau

Unique to our family, the Fish Biryani (Machi no Palau) is an all-time favourite.
My mother-in-law is highly renown amongst the Parsis of the world for her amazing recipe, which has been published in the great Manna of the Angels.  When I was getting married, as their affection toward me joining the family, all my cousin-in-laws had put me to the test of initiation into their family: if I were able to recreate this wonderful, aromatic, soul-satisfying dish. It is now a personal favourite in our home. 

And since most friends and acquaintances haven neither heard of this, nor tried it, we love to share this lovely dish at lunches, dinner parties, and special occasions.

Yummy Fish Palau

 Fish Biryani/ Machi no Palau

Serves 8      


In a pan heat a little safflo oil and fry till golden brown
3 chopped onions

Add to this and stir a minute

2 tsps garlic
salt to taste.. about 1 –1 /2 tsp
1 tsp cumin powder
6 green chillies finely chopped
8-10 curry leaves

Now add to this and fry for 5-7 minutes
2 medium chopped tomatoes
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp curry powder
½ tsp turmeric powder

Beat together
1 cup yogurt at room temperature
pinch of sugar
pinch of salt

Add this to the masala mix and let it cook simmering over a medium-low heat for 20-30 minutes till the whole mixture is well cooked, and almost dry. Initially cover the pan and after the time is done open the lid and dry off the masala stirring constantly over a higher heat.
Now add making sure the gravy comes to a boil eventually,
½ tsp saffron
lime juice of 1 lime
½ cup chopped coriander leaves
1/4 cup water

Once it is ready to assemble
Add to this and cook for just 7-10 minutes
½ kg/1 lb fish fillets


In a pan of boiling water boil together
700 gms of rice
1 bayleaf
2 thin sticks of cinnamon
6 whole white cardamoms broken down
Optionally 1 tbsp black or white cumin seeds whole

Remove and strain all the water when the rice is just cooked not overly done.

Now assemble the fish gravy and top with rice.
Make holes and drizzle over a little saffron water to help bring a little colour to the white rice. Cover very tightly so no air escapes.
Either simmer on gentle heat for 15-25 minutes
 or optionally
In a preheated oven of 350F/180C degrees for 15-20 minutes.
This ensures the flavours steam through and the rice cooks evenly.

It is best to use a firm fish like Salmon or Surmai. Making squares keeps the fish from breaking apart.
When adding the yogurt temper the masala by adding a few tbsps of the mix into the yogurt before adding it all in. It is best to allow the mixture to cool down slightly to avoid any of the yogurt from curdling. 
Use full fat yogurt and not skimmed.

Serve this with a Raita or Masala Dal if you wish.Personally it is perfect on its own.

For more yummy recipes from the Parsi Cuisine click
Niloufer's Kitchen: Quick and Easy

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Chicken Liver- Masala

Chicken Liver- Masala

Growing up I remember enjoying chicken liver freshly saute`d  or bar b-q'd on a warm evening ever so often. Generally served with toothpicks as an individual appetiser! 
Chicken Liver is a healthy nutritious protein that is full of Iron, Vitamin A and B's. Its is also a good source of minerals like Manganese, Copper and Zinc among others. However it is very high in cholesterol which is important to take note off.
Here is my version of those fond memories. 

Always use only fresh chicken livers and not frozen.  Wash well, remove all stringy fibers attached to liver.
Serve warm. Do not reheat.

In a  wok or large deep fry pan heat

1 tbsp canola oil
500 gms / 1 lb of fresh chicken liver
Three sprigs of curry leaves
2 whole green slit chillies
1 tsp of garlic minced
Season with salt
¼ tsp turmeric
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp chillie powder
1 fresh lemon

Saute on a high flame for about 5 minutes until it all browns and then lower the heat cover and cook for another 10-15 minutes till it is cooked through. Do not overcook. 
Sprinkle with fresh lemon juice and serve.

It is best to cut one piece of liver to see if it is done rather than overcooking the lot. It should be pinkish yet no trace of blood to have cooked properly. The darker the colour the drier the liver will be.
Do not reheat.

Keep it marinated and ready for up to 24 hours covered and refrigerated. Bring to room temperature to cook evenly and keep the livers soft. If its chilled or cold the shock of adding this to the hot pan will leave them hard and chewy.

Reduce the red chillie powder if it is too spicy.

For more delicious recipes click
Niloufer's Kitchen: Quick and Easy

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Walnut Crumble Cake

Walnut Crumble Cake

It is magical, its easy and its quite small!
This said, it is such a tasty moist cake and always enjoyed. There is no icing on it and really rather simple. But almost a comfort food. With a cappuccino or a cuppa it is rather hard not to finish off in an hour or two!

Soft, moist and delicious, Walnut Crumble Cake

Magical Walnut Crumble
Step 1
Line and grease a  8 inch round pan.
Preheat oven to 350F/180C degrees

Step 2
Grind  in a food processor and keep aside
1 cup walnuts
3 tbsp  bread crumbs
¼ tsp salt

Step 3
Beat till light and airy , do not dry them out
3 egg whites
slowly adding
1/4 cup sugar

Step 4
Over a pot of boiling water, 
Beat with an electric beater until it doubles in volume and is a beautiful pale yellow in colour
4 egg yolks
1/4 cup salted butter
1/4 cup sugar

Add to this 1 tbsp  Baileys Irish cream

Now with a metal spoon assemble the cake,
Add all the dry ingredients to the egg yolk mixture in 3 batches
Then add the egg whites, folding it carefully in two batches.
Pour into prepared pan and bake for 20-22 minutes.

When it is done the cake will start to leave the sides of the pan.
Eat it warm, French Vanilla ice cream goes well with it if you like.
If you do not have Baileys, any creamy liquor like Kalhua, Tia Maria will be perfect.
Make sure the eggs are at room temperature otherwise they will not triple in volume nor whip like a meringue.
Always whip the egg whites first. The same beater whisk can then be used on the yolks. However used/dirty whisks do not beat egg whites!!
Only use a metal spoon to fold otherwise the volume will sink immediately.

For more delicious recipes click
Niloufer's Kitchen : Winter

Monday, 10 November 2014

Chicken Makhani/ Butter Chicken

Butter Chicken
Chicken Makhani

Butter chicken has become increasingly popular in Indian restaurant cuisine. The name was given to imply that the its smooth as silky butter; this is where it all began. !!
More popular in the West it has earned a reputation. Probably the most heard of Indian dish it commonly appears on most menus. 
Originally this recipe was prepared with bone-in chicken, most of the restaurants particularly in the Western world prefer to serve it boneless. 

It is the addition of cream that gives this a beautiful caramel colour.  In addition this delicious recipe has a combination of couple of types of butter; regular, clarified/ghee and a “nut”  butter.
Cashews being the popular choice in India the liberal use of it in their cuisine is apparent. Cashew butter is the popular choice in this dish to finish it off.

Boneless thigh pieces of Butter Chicken

Combine together
1 cup thick yogurt
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tsp cumin powder
2 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp red chillie powder
1/4 tsp turmeric
2 tbsp garlic paste
1 tbsp ginger paste
1 tsp salt

Add 3 lbs of boneless thighs of chicken cut in bite size pieces
Marinade and refrigerate overnight.

Drain out the chicken from the marinade as best as you can and grill the pieces on a tray in the oven under the broiler. Alternately brown the chicken on both sides on the stove in a flat skillet. Grilling it on your bar-b-q is also another option.

Makhani Sauce

125 gms/4ozs pureed tomatoes
2 tbsp cashew butter
1 finely chopped large onion
2 cloves of garlic
2 green chillies
1/2 cup cream
1 tbsp butter, ghee or brown butter

In a pan heat some butter or clarified butter and add the finely chopped large onion. Fry it until soft brown and  the finely chopped garlic and green chillies.
When fragrant add the remaining marinade and the  pureed tomatoes. Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes. 
Add the cashew butter; you may need a bit extra to bind the sauce together until the right consistency is obtained.
Now add the heavy cream and stir properly. Finally add the chicken pieces. Let it simmer until it is cooked through.
Add on top a generous handful of freshly chopped cilantro or coriander leaves.
Serve hot with warm naan.


Adding a pinch of saffron can make it more fragrant.
If you do not wish to grill the chicken cook it on a stove top in small batches in a large skillet, use high heat and let it brown on either side, to get the caramalised flavours.
Use the broiler on a high for 5 minutes on each side if preferred.

Brown butter and clarified butter may be prepared at home by simple boiling a nob of butter on a gentle heat until it separates. Continuing to cook it will create the sediments to turn brown. Hence leaving the clarified butter on top and the brown butter at the bottom.

Preparing your own cashew butter is easy if you have a sharp coffee grinder. Put in half a cup of cashews and grind. It will turn into butter! Using the 'broken' cashews available in all stores will halve the cost as well.

Crusty bread will also be quite delicious when warm and fresh.

For more delicious recipes click
Niloufer's Kitchen: Quick and Easy

Monday, 3 November 2014



Custard, crust and cheese makes up a savoury pie better known as a Quiche. The area of Lorraine in France takes credit for popularising this soft creamy dreamy dish. Best served warm, a perfect Quiche is best described of the fine balance of setting the custard filling. Bake it at a low heat;it must not boil but set just right; Firm to the eye and touch yet with a bit of a jiggle in the center when you shake it. Only then is a Quiche simply perfect!!

Served with a fresh green salad sprinkled with a light vinaigrette makes for an ideal lunch.

There are many variations of the Quiche that originated centuries ago (surprisingly in Germany and not France). The word itself is borrowed from the German Kuchen meaning  a cake.
Legend has it that leftovers of bacon were added to a custard initially to make this a savoury cake. As it moved over the borders to France via the areas of Lorraine and Alsace some leeks/ green onions and cheese were predominantly added to make it Quiche Lorraine!!

In the early 1900's it was considered a "ladies" dish; and commonly people mentioned that real men do not eat Quiche!  Much like Real men do not wear Pink? But thankfully times have changed all of that. It is common to find it on menus all over the world (including many men enjoying a slice wearing a bright pink apparel) with variations that may have other vegetables like asparagus, broccoli, corn and a choice of meat - yet the custard and cheese being a constant in this crinkled shortcrust pastry.

Cheese and Leek Quiche

soft and set, cooled to perfection and ready to serve.

Leek, Ricotta and Cheddar Cheese Quiche

Pastry Shell
1 1/2 cup sifted flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup salted butter
3 tbsp cold water
 In a bowl  sift the flower and salt. Cut the butter in with two knives. Alternately use your index and middle fingers, just the tips, gently mixing it until it looks like a bowl of little pebbles. Now add water and bring the dough together.
Cover the bowl with a wet tea towel; the wetness should not be touching the dough itself. Leave it to rest for at least 30 minutes.
Roll out the pastry on a piece of parchment. It should be larger that the desired dish size.
Flip it over the dish and gently pat it down. Cut the edges off with the help of a knife. Prick dots into the pie and bake in a preheated oven of 350F/180C for 15 minutes till it is barely cooked and just dry. Cool for 10 minutes before filling.

2 tbsp salted butter
2 finely chopped Leeks
1 cup fresh ricotta cheese/paneer
1 cup shredded sharp assorted cheddar
1/2 cup cream
1 1/2 cup whole milk
4 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly cracked mixed pepper corns
a few drops of tabasco
1/4 tsp sugar

Saute the leeks in 2 tbsp of butter until just soft.
Cool and keep aside.
Beat the eggs with a fork in a large bowl , add the milk, cream, tabasco, sugar, salt, cracked peppercorns. Keep it aside.
Sprinkle the cheddar cheese on the cooked pastry shell. Top with ricotta/paneer and leek.
Now pour over the ready liquid custard all over.
Bake it in a preheated oven of 400F/200C degrees for 5 minutes and  lower the temperature drastically to 275F/135C degrees and allow it to cook for 20 minutes. Check the quiche, It can look set and golden brown but must have a perfect  jiggle in the centre yet not be liquid or runny. Turn off the oven, wait for another 7 minutes and  then remove from the oven. Let it rest for 15 minutes do not cover the quiche. Serve warm. Not piping hot.

Grate the cheese through a larger hole of the grater rather than a finer one.
Use your favourite hard  cheddar cheese. Choosing one dark and one light cheddar will make it more interesting visually when cut.
Paneer/Ricotta should be preferably older and not fresh. The fresh soft one will release a lot of water spoiling the texture of the quiche completely. When baked the once old and hard paneer magically turns into light fluffy delicious bites.
Jalapeno cheese is a great alternate for those who love a sharp bite in their food.
Be adventurous and add a herb or two if you have some in the house, basil, chive or tarragon are  great choices.
Substitute leek with green onions/spring onions using the whole sprig including the green end of it. 2 leeks should be equal to approximately 10 to 12 green onions.

Do not reheat. 

For more interesting recipes click
Niloufer's Kitchen:Winter

Sunday, 26 October 2014

coconut lime ice cream

Coconut Lime Ice Cream

Last summer I had friend I grew up with visit from California. Having met after far too long he requested me to cook them dinner. Experimenting with the familiar flavours this ice cream was the highlight of the dinner party!
A hilarious incident occurred when he inquired what special dessert I had prepared for him.
He politely declined saying he had over eaten and decided to skip. Everyone at the table was quite adamant he try the ice cream since it was prepared especially for him. He landed up eating half the container and wanted the recipe! He confided later that he was not too fond of fresh coconut hence his initial hesitation.  
Needless to say this recipe is for my friend Sadiq. For all his humour and wit that is always fun and refreshing; but mostly for his amazing sense of taste in food and friends!

Fresh coconut and Lime ice cream topped with fresh coconut slices and lime.

3 cups whole milk
1 cup condensed milk
1 1/2 cups evaporated milk
Zest of 1 lime
4 tbsp or more to taste fresh lime juice
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1 1/2 cups fresh grated coconut, in frozen packets
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 tsp cardamom powder
2 tbsp rose water
1 cup full cream

Heat the whole milk, condensed and evaporated milks with the sugar.Let the sugar melt stirring it from time to time. Now add all the coconut and bring it to a boil. Let it simmer for 50-60 minutes. It will become thick and have a creamy coloured hue. 
Cool completely and then add the salt, cardamom, vanilla, rosewater and the lime juice. Add the 1 cup cream. Taste to adjust the lime flavour.
Cover the pot and chill for 24 hours. Churn in the ice cream maker. Serve it while soft and fresh.

Tips……use the frozen packets of grated fresh coconut which is not dry nor desiccated. This is available in Indian stores and the flesh is chunky and delicious. Do not use the sweet coconut flakes. Feel free to grind fresh coconut from its shell, but it may be harder than one thinks without the correct tools.

The measurements for the condensed milk and evaporated milk is approximate. Both are the exact amounts available in the average sized cans available worldwide.

Ice cream makers are the best, but if you don’t have one mix it from time to time rather vigorously while it is setting in the freezer. Cover tightly to prevent crystallization. Eat it when it is not hard as ice but softly chilled as mousse.

Serve it on a half pineapple bed for your next party!

For more recipes from Indo-Persian influences try my e-cookbook 
Niloufer's Kitchen: Persian Fusion

Tuesday, 21 October 2014



October welcomes the season of all nuts. This sweet and nutty chestnut soft to the bite (which is really a fruit  technically) is no exception to this rule.  

Available pureed, canned, dried, powdered and vacum packed it is also on shelves as a spread and even chestnut butter!! It is perfect to use in soups, sauces, desserts, salads and bread.

The French are well known to produce a Marron Glace` from this special nut to create their sweet trolleys. It pairs beautifully with dry Sherry when preparing a soup or an ice cream and compliments game meats such as goose and rabbit rather perfectly. 

The chestnut is found in a casing; called the burr. Smooth from the outside, it has a fuzzy furriness from the inside. The chestnut sits in this comfortable cover. When fresh it fits in well. As it grows older it becomes drier and shrivels up leaving this snug fit and  can start rattling within. Check the chestnut by giving it a good shake to ensure its freshness. 

To prepare it at home always make an indentation on each piece by snipping it or it will burst open; splattering all over. It can be boiled for a couple of minutes or cooked on the stove top roasting it to perfection. It can be cooked in the oven too. Removing the nut from within its shell can be time consuming. New Year, Christmas and Thanksgiving  gatherings traditionally serve roasted chestnuts to enjoy together as an after dinner treat.

Freshly picked Chestnuts available at the Local St Lawrence Market Toronto.

Edible seeds of the Chestnut tree, this nut is one of the oldest at over 3000 years old. Legend has it that it was first cultivated in what is present day Turkey and its surrounding areas of Mesopotamia and the regions of Asia Minor. It was then taken further West to Mediterranean Europe where the Greeks and Italians in particular used it to their advantage through storing it well. Very high in carbohydrates and starch as well has having natural sugars it is a healthy nutritious food.  It especially helped their armies survive during long wars and also assisted their population during food shortages. 
It is now grown in a variety of countries and has a distinct number of species; Also referred to by other names. "Chestnut" emerges from the Chesten Nut which also leads back to the French word Chataigne. Europe and Korea currently lead in producing these age old morsels of delight.

For an e-cookbook containing my delicious chestnut soup click
Niloufer's Kitchen: Winter

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Easy Malido


Traditionally served as part of the prayers for the family passed on, the Malido and Papdi was offered as part of the tray of food prayed upon. It was the Presiding priest and his wife and his family that made this often tedious but delicious Parsi sweet dish. Then there was the rich version of it, lots of pistachios and almonds added to it  and many more steps to get there.

Not generally eaten on birthdays and happy celebrations, the Malido is no longer a part of the younger generations must eat list. But as everything evolves, the Zarthostis in the West have decided to come up with an easy yet authentic tasting Malida for everyone tohave easy access too and carry on with their tradition. I got this recipe from an elderly aunt, who does not recall who actually shared this with her, but I have tweaked it ever so slightly and am now sharing it with you to enjoy. I think it is the best option available.

There is more good news on this, the Papdi, that completes the dish is difficult to make but freely available to buy. Interestingly on one of my travels to Spain, sitting at the breakfast buffet I noticed something very similar to the papdi. Their Aceite de Torta; it is PERFECT. Happily I bought back a few to share. A few months later our local supermarket has managed to import it and another bakery replicates it locally. I have been sharing this with others since the past 5 years and I do know you can find the same in the UK, New York and New Jersey, so lets hope it is possible to pick up a few in Texas, California and other places where everyone reading this resides!

Cheats Malido 

2 oz canola oil
2 oz butter
1 cup coarse semolina
1/2 cup Bisquick
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups water
2 tsp vanilla essence
3 tbsp rosewater
1 tsp freshly ground cardamom
1 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
pinch of salt
2 ozs slivered almonds
1 oz slivered raisins
1 tbsp oil 

Step 1

In a pot heat oil and  butter over low heat. Do not boil.
Add to it the semolina. Cook for about  5 to 10 minutes until it gets golden brown. Stir constantly.
Add to this the Bisquick and continue cooking for another few minutes till all of it is mixed well.

Step 2

Aik Taar no seero
In another pan, large enough to hold all the malida, 
make a caramel syrup or Aik taar no seero. 
On  medium heat, melt completely until golden caramel brown in colour, 2 tbsps from the total sugar. Lower the heat and quickly pour cold water. Stir until it is all melted. DO  NOT let it boil at this point. Add the rest of the sugar and dissolve completely. The flame should be switched off or on a very low.  Once every grain of sugar is melted bring the mixture to a  boil and make it a one taar no seero.
Remove from the heat and add the sooji and bisquick mixture to it, stir it in till smooth and all the lumps are gone. 
Add  vanilla essence, rosewater, cardamom and nutmeg. 
Now return to a low stove and cook until the right consistency you enjoy allowing it to bubble for a couple of minutes.
Serve with fried slivered almonds and raisins.


Aik taar no seero (one thread syrup) is best described as a liquid caramel. To test dip a wooden spoon in the liquid mixture. Hold the spoon pointing downward. When the last bit of liquid drips off it should form one tear drop. Do it often once the caramel is boiling and as it thickens the drop will become clearer and more apparent. It is the perfect way to know when it is done. If two tear drops fall clearly it is thicker but is then called bey taar no seero (two thread syrup)!
The semolina should be as coarse as you can find it for a good texture. 
When you add the bisquick the mixture will rise fast and furious so ensure your pan is large enough and it does not spill over. It will then all settle down. This is because it has a rising agent soda bicarbonate in the Bisquick.
Use a whisk to mix and stir. This will work efficiently and quickly to keep the lumps away.
The rosewater is light and flowery, it is not the same as an essence. It is available in Indian, Persian and Middle Eastern Stores and in many of the International food aisles of supermarkets.
Malido is best served warm and can be kept refrigerated for a week.

For more recipes from Parsi Cuisine click
Niloufer's Kitchen:Quick and Easy

Saturday, 11 October 2014

Channa Dal/ Bengal Gram Lentil

Channa dal or dar

Lentils, Dar in Gujrati or Dal in Hindi and Urdu; it is also referred to as Kaathor in India. 
The Channa dar/dal  is also commonly called the Bengal gram. 

This particular lentil has a sweet and nutty flavour. Split off a whole gram, these can be harder than most and takes slightly longer to cook. It is highly nutritious and is often a protein substitute for vegetarians.
This particular recipe has meat in it but there is another without. I shall be posting that on my blog later with a link to this page for your convenience. 

2 cups gram lentil
1 tbsp oil
½ kg/1 lb pieces of bone –in meat; lamb/goat/mutton
1 1/2 tsp red chillie powder
1’ piece of ginger
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp crushed garlic
1/2 tsp brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
½ tsp turmeric
2 green chillies finely cut
6 leaves of fresh mint finely cut
1 cup finely chopped tomatoes
2 cups crushed onions, already browned

1 tsp tamarind paste

Heat oil, add in the pieces of meat and braise for 5 minutes. Add all the spices and the washed lentils, fry 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, onions and mint.  Add 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil, lower the heat and cover. Cook for 1 hour 30 minutes. The lentils and meat should be soft but still remain whole. Add 1 tsp of tamarind paste. Simmer for another 30 minutes. 

Use a fresh green mango or two, washed peeled and chopped instead of the tamarind paste. If you do not have access to either you can add the juice of 2 fresh lemons. 
Adding a handful of freshly chopped corriander leaves can also add to the flavour.
Serve with a wedge of lemon or lime, some finely sliced onion and tomato and perhaps a cucumber and beetroot to compliment this dish. 
Generally crisp bread is served on the side, but fresh warm chapatis are a good option.

For more Parsi recipes click 
Niloufer's Kitchen: Quick and Easy

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Croquembouche/ Profiteroles


A literal crunch in the mouth or the croque-en-bouche is a delicious dessert traditionally served as a wedding cake in France and Italy. It is made up of creatively piled profiteroles which make a cone like structure simply glued to each other by fresh hot caramel and decorated by spun caramel; thin golden threads and generally referred to as a Croquembouche. Elegant and simply delectable.

The French who take their food creations very seriously honour the patron saint of chefs, Saint Honore by creating the Gateau St Honore, another combination of  profiteroles served as a cake.

Try this as a centrepiece to your dining table. A definite show stopper!!

Choux Pastry 

In a pan heat on a low flame,
1/2 cup salted butter
1 cup water
now add
1 cup flour and 1/4 tsp salt. Mix well, it should make a roux. Cook for a minute or two.
Cool for 5 minutes.

Pour the mixture into a food processor and with the machine running add 4 eggs one at a time allowing it to process and give a sheen to the mixture.
Pipe the eclairs with a piping bag on a greased baking tray or lay out a sheet of parchment paper instead.
Bake in a preheated oven of 375F/190C degrees for 20 minutes and then on 350/175C for another 20 minutes until well baked through.
Fill  each of them generously with creme patisserie or fresh whipped cream with a large nozzled icing bag from the bottom of the profiterole.
Will make 50 small profiteroles.

Creme Patisserie
2 cups cream
3 tbsp flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp sherry
In a pan mix the sugar flour salt and cream. Whisk to cook over a low flame. Bring to a boil for a minute or two.
In another bowl mix 2 egg yolks vanilla and sherry, mix it well. Now add 1 tbsp of the hot mixture to the egg and beat it well. This will temper the eggs so they don't curdle. Now through a sieve push the egg mix into the cream mix and keep mixing. Bring it back to the stove for a minute to allow the eggs to cook through. Keep stirring to keep it smooth. Put a piece of cling film over the custard so it does not form a skin over it.

Caramel :
In a pan, it must be a pan with a handle you can hold on to while swirling and later to paint the golden threads on.
Heat 1 cup sugar + 1 tsp water
Allow to melt. Swirl the pan once or twice. 
Remove from the heat at a golden colour.

Set the already browned caramel over a hot water bath to keep it soft. While it is soft touch each profiterole on the bottom of it to the caramel and assemble the tower. This will act like your glue. Once that is done, hold the pan close to the tower of profiteroles and with a fork or a food brush swirl the caramel over. Using artists stroke it will magically leave a trail of thin golden threads which will harden instantly.
Alternately take a parchment paper and go round in circles over it to make a wreath like caramel spun structure that can be placed over.


Use a hand held balloon whisk to mix the roux. It is most efficient and leaves a smooth dough.

If you don't have an icing bag use a large ziploc bag, fill in the choux pastry mix, twist to make a cone, and snip of the edge of the bag! No washing and no cleaning. Although it is easier to make pipe out and fill larger profiteroles, the smaller ones are easier to handle to assemble the actual croquembouche.

The cream Patisserie is available ready to fill in delis across the UK and Europe. Just add a dash of sherry or rum if you prefer.

To spin the caramel into threads, place the prepared caramel on a hot water bath to keep it liquid. With a fork spin the threads on to a butter paper/parchment paper in a form of a large "ring" and place on the tower of your profiteroles. Work very quickly as caramel hardens within minutes and burns within seconds! Be careful not to scald yourself as it is extremely hot and can burn you easily.
For the caramel, remove from heat once it turns a light amber colour if assembling the croquembouche to use as your glue.  Alternately assemble the custard filled profiteroles and pour the hot caramel all over!! 

For more recipes from my French Collection click
Niloufer's Kitchen: French Bistro

Zainab Mahmood-Ahmad Croquembouche!? Outstanding!