Foolproof Coffee Cake: Welcome 2015

cake 06

Welcome 2015, with a quick coffee-flavoured cake.

All in all, 2014 was a good year. Ani was home for some time. When he left, it was to find his feet and spread his wings with more confidence – he got his first job! I am now the mother of a gainfully employed young man. We traveled a little. The road-trip to Ladakh, a long time in planning, finally happened. Vijay and I crossed another milestone together – we have been married 25 years now. All of us, the extended family included, kept good health, which is the greatest blessing of all.

Ani Vijay 1992-93
The Boys – 1992
October 1989
October 1989

Now that I think about it, nothing much out of the ordinary happened in 2014! And that’s what makes it a wonderful year – everything in moderation, no sharp dips or sudden spikes. I wish I could say that I started exercising regularly, but I haven’t. The rest, I’m pretty pleased about.

Sometime, mid-year, I and a friend decided that we ought to eat out more. Heck, I don’t even have that one kid to worry about now! The intent is to try new places and make new favourites. We tried Pot Belly, a small restaurant serving Bihari food in Shahput Jat. It gets a big thumbs up – everything we tried was fabulous. This was followed up with The Pop Up, a pop-up, at Asian Games Village complex, that got a thumbs-down. This was a strange experience. We were the only ones there still the service lacked shine. We might have made unsuitable choices but they left us wondering whether they were a pop-up for another reason.

Towards the end of 2014, I even started blogging at a better rate! Through the year I also discovered some food blogs that I want to share with you; they are refreshingly unique.

Delicious Istanbul

Hiroyuki’s Blog On Japanese Cooking

Heron Earth

The Silk Road Gourmet

Yes, I notice too there’s a theme here! It is interesting to learn about the cultural and historical links of how we eat, and these blogs offer that.

I was a little upset that blogs/websites that essentially gather everyone else’s recipes were getting all the traffic. Some of them had my recipes! That included, among others, Tarla Dalal’s site that took down the picture, after I complained, but still retains the recipe, verbatim, for my Green Chili Pickle! Search for “Carrot Kanji” and you will find the web flooded with pictures from my post with hardly any attributed to me.

For a brief moment I did consider Googling “how to get more traffic to your blog” and then stopped. I wasn’t going to let how Google reads dictate how I write! You, who are still reading, are the ones that I want! The quiet comments section though, is a bit disheartening. What’s up with that? In the time of Insta-everything leaving comments does get a bit tedious, I agree, usually requiring some kind of verification – an extra step most of us don’t have the time for. Won’t you, every now and then, leave a note? I am not offering any giveaway, and yet hoping you will outgrow being The Very Quiet Cricket.

2015 has begun well with my new passport finally arriving in the first few days of the New Year. It did entail a fourth and final visit to the Passport Office just before the year was out, and took 9 months from the time of application. The US Visa on the old passport is valid till September 2015, so…who knows!

I was going to start the year off with another pickle (red chilli) but what with it being festive season yet again, Makarsankranti, Pongal, Bihu, and what have you, I decided I should re-post an old recipe. Better I than someone else! πŸ˜€ This time, with pictures (err… cell-phone pictures for now). I baked it last weekend to take it to a friend’s tea party which ended in dinner!

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Teatime Coffee Cake

1C + 1T maida (all purpose flour)
1t baking powder
1/2 t salt
2 medium sized eggs
3/5 C oil
3/4 C granulated sugar
1 heaped T instant coffee powder (optional)
3-4 T cold milk
1t vanilla essence
1/3 C slivered almonds

Sift flour and baking powder. Mix in salt. Oil a 9β€³ cake tin, dust with flour; tap upside down to remove excess flour. Dissolve the coffee powder in the milk.

Turn oven on to Gas Mark 6.

In a mixing bowl whisk together eggs, oil and sugar with a hand-held mixer (not a hand-blender) till the sugar has dissolved completely. This takes a few minutes because our sugar here comes in large grain size.

Add the coffee-flavoured milk, and vanilla essence. Mix till combined. Keeping the mixer on the lowest speed add in the flour. Beat till combined. Pour into the prepared tin. Sprinkle evenly with slivered almonds. Bake in the center of the oven for 40-50 minutes or till a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool (if you have the time). Slice and serve with tea or coffee.

33 thoughts on “Foolproof Coffee Cake: Welcome 2015

  1. Anita,

    Wishing you both a wonderful Anniversary. 25 years!!WOW!!!Here’s to more Happiness your way…and a happy 2015 to you. Keep blogging and traveling so we can keep reading:-)


    That was quick, Rameshwari! Thanks and Happy New Year!

  2. Hi Anita! I am a long time silent reader of your blog.. I read the blog on feedly where there is no link to comment and that combined with laziness, have never commented here.. But I want to tell you today how much I love your blog- the recipes and the stories. Your blog is the go to place I come time and again to check the recipe for Kadhi, rajma, chole etc.. Also love your travelogues – especially this road trip to the Ladakh region! Keep sharing!

    Happy new year!

    πŸ˜€ Thanks for coming out and letting me know, Subha!

  3. Very good 25 years and a very full and happy life
    I am one of those long time followers and sue do look forward to your postings Not only the recipes but bits about your life and life where you live it.
    Perhaps when your passport is renewed you will visit to Canada.
    And lastly say hello to your Mother for me.
    I remember we are the same age but do not remember when her birthday is
    Hope that she is well
    I can not believe you have so many daily postings 800 to 1000 how can you possibly handle all of that.
    all the best from sunny Florida U.S. of A.

    What postings are you talking about, Diane? I have just over 200 posts here in total! πŸ˜‰
    My Mum is well and I will convey your greetings to her!
    Thanks for being a regular reader! πŸ˜€

  4. Nice little post and recipe! Congrats to both Ani and the two of you! (I keep scrolling up to look at the volume of your curly hair- wow!) πŸ™‚

    πŸ˜€ Look who spoke up after a long time!

    Yeah, those were the days. Now, one is thankful just for the fact that there is some hair – good to start our with extra.

  5. I am one of the very quite crickets you have mentioned in your blog. I really enjoy your blog and you have a way with words. Keep blogging !

    πŸ˜€ Thanks, CMath, for coming out!

  6. Wow, 25 years is a milestone indeed. And how cute both of you looked. I share the big hair with you that was I think pretty cool in the 80s and 90s atleast:-) When my parent’s marriage was that old(or young actually) I looked at them and thought they were dinosaurs and recently in December I got payback when we completed 14 years and my son looked at me and said “wow, you must be very old mom” and then hastily added “not that old I’m sure!”.

    Congrats to the son who bagged his first job. Now he can take you out for dinner eh:-)

    I have marked so many recipes from here to try this year and will post outcome updates when I do so. Loved the Andhra pickle you’d posted a while ago and it’s now a staple in our home so big thumbs up. You are pickle Goddess!

    Big hair is even cooler when you are in your 40s and 50s! πŸ˜€ Truely, we/I must look like a dinosaur to people in their teens and early 20s. By your 30s you know it’s just a matter of time…

    You’re right, it’s time for me to ask the son for that dinner. In fact, he even got a raise already!

    I am deep in pickles right now! Thanks for chirping, Deepa!

  7. Came here about a year ago when searching for some besan sabji recipe.. stayed πŸ™‚

    Thanks for standing up to be counted, SD!

  8. another cricket who really enjoys your cooking and travelling! happy new year and keep writing!

    Thanks for joining the other chirpy crickets, Vrishali! πŸ˜€

  9. Congrats on a good year and 25 years of successful marriage. I can vouch for this coffee cake. It is one of the best I have ever had.
    Carl Z.

    Hey there, Carl! Thanks for being a regular reader!

  10. Great Blog Anita!! I am one more of the silent readers. Specially enjoy the part of a Kashmiri girl married into a Maharashtrian family and living in New Delhi. So much of a cultural blend! Whenever I read your posts, I always get the feeling that I am reading a blog of a very genuine and a very down to earth Person!! Keep writing!!

    πŸ™‚ Thanks for reading, Seema!

  11. Yet another silent cricket, coming out of the woodworks now. I really enjoy your writing and very much hope that you will keep at it. Congrats on your 25th wedding anniversary. Here’s to many more!


    and, another! Thank you for writing in!

  12. Hey Anita, happy new year. Long time reader of your blog but guilty of being too lazy to comment. You do have a lovely blog and I have really enjoyed reading about your student experiences in the US and your travelogues to various parts of India. Of course your recipes are the icing on the cake. So all the best to you and the blog in 2015!!!

    HNY, Anjana! To more travel and food!

  13. Hi I’m one of the crickets. Enjoy reading your blog . Following your recipe for aloo paratha this mornings breakfast. Keep blogging

    πŸ˜€ …yet another chirped! Thanks, Lakshmi, for reading!

  14. Hi Anita,
    Like many others , I too have been following your blog for a while now. I love your recipes , esp. the pickles and have tried a few of them successfully.

    Your Ladakh travelogue has inspired me to make a similar driving trip in the coming few years.

    Hope you have a good 2015 !


    Yes, make that trip now, Ashwini! Thanks for reading!

  15. Been a silent ( read lazy) reader for almost 3 yrs, love the way u write and give little glimpses of u r life making us part of u r family. Plz cont the good work, will try not be so silent ……

    πŸ˜€ Thanks for making the effort to leave a comment, Divya! It is good to know that when I speak here, it is like sitting down with an old friend not just for me!

  16. Hi Anita di,

    You have surely led the guilt trip for many more like me who have been your followers yet preferred to stay silent.
    your blog is my inspiration for sooooo many recipes..especially the Kashmiri and Punjabi ones…
    you are the reason I got back to Rajma…and gt addicted, so much so that it has become my pantry staple and one of my comfort foods.
    and not just for recipes, I feel a connect with you through your writings. You come across a genuine, ethical and straight forward person.
    Seems you never created the blog for posting fancy photographs and exotic recipes…you put in heartfelt efforts to pen down simple and daily food recipes interwoven with its cultural heritage..and thats exotic for me.
    I never commented on your blog before as I have had experiences in the past where I commented on few blogs earlier but those never got published or got no response.
    Although I realize that you’l too are as busy with your lives, I thought maybe my comments were never read.So I just gave up.
    I guess now my new year resolution should be to start commenting again πŸ™‚

    and hey..wish u a happy new year…keep writing and inspiring


    Yes, Samidha, it is good to hear, even irregularly, from you – like a virtual chat over tea with a friend. Every word here is honest and it is heartening to know that you know that! πŸ˜€

    Thank you, for reading, and hope to hear more from you in the new year!

  17. 25 years! Congrats to you and V! I hope he gave you a silver tiara!

    How did you come up with 3/5 cup oil and how do you measure it without curling up on the floor doing conversions?

    I love love love those two pics of Ani! Best wishes and blessing to him always.

    I still have to catch up on your adventure through the mountains. I skimmed through most of it but it warrants much more than cursory reading.

    I’ll raise a toast to more spectacular writing from you in 2015! Cheers!

    Here’s old time friend (and one time Editor!)!
    No silver tiara but the Ladakh trip was a great trip for both of us!

    How quickly kids grow up; time really does fly! You make sure you treasure the next few years with M – she’s going to fly away soon.

  18. Hi Anita,

    My second time commenting here.
    Love love your blog. Dare I say, your blog is my only guilty pleasure on the web. When I miss a friend to talk to I come here.
    So please keep writing.


    Wow, that is so good to hear, Mohini! I know how much of a time-sucker the Web and social media are, so thank you, for reading!

  19. Hello Anita,
    Stumbled upon your blog while looking for Indian travelogues and got hooked. You have a lovely blog and it is genuinely heart warming to read your family recipes and travel posts. Keep spreading the joy and have a fantastic year ahead!

    πŸ™‚ Thank you, Madhu! New Year Greetings to you as well!

  20. Sorry for being the quiet cricket. Still love your blog since discovering it 7 years ago. Still follow some of your recipes to the t for household favorite dishes such as chholey, khandvi, kanji, kadhi, ma ki dal and so many more. Thanks for bringing good food and stories into our lives πŸ™‚ Happy New Year!

    There you are, Sonia! Good to hear from you!

    Which part of the world are you in at the moment? Hope to meet you again some day!

  21. Have always been here πŸ™‚ You write and I read and some of your recipes have become our home staples πŸ™‚

    Congratulations on the big milestone, hope you jump skip hop your way to 50 yrs as well πŸ™‚

    Thank you for your wishes, and stopping by, AA_Mom! πŸ™‚

  22. Happy 2015 Anita and a very happy anniversary. The son is now an employed young man? Didn’t he just go to college? Time does fly!!!

    Hi, BM.
    I know, I too feel as if I just wrote about him going to college!

  23. I read every post of yours…and come back again and again to try out your aloo bhaaji, chole, rajma and what not. I am just toooooo lazy I guess to say how much I love your writing and recipe. πŸ™‚

    Happy 25th anniversary and congrats to your son for his new job!!!

    Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment here, Pea Kay! Good to have regular, loyal readers, and so good to hear from them too! πŸ˜‰

  24. Also….how can i subscribe your blogposts through emails????…that will be pf great help!!!!

    You can do that, Pea Kay. Just scroll down to the bottom, on the top of the left column there is “subscribe to this blog by email” – enter your e-mail there and you’re done!

  25. Hi Anita,

    Greetings from an old reader of your blog. Congratulations on your Silver Jubilee and Wish you both a lifetime of happiness.

    Also wish you and your family a fabulous and healthy 2015. Look forward to learning from you (your blog) as i have over the past many years.

    Have a great weekend.


    Good to hear from you, Zinnia! Thanks for your wishes!

  26. Another quite cricket commenting. Love your blog the recipes and the stories. I’ve been a faithful reader from 2006. I’ve tried and loved your haak (big family favorite), rajma, lauki in yogurt, dhansak, tomato chutney, veg burgers, UP style potato curry, marmalade, Chile pickle and so much more.
    Congratulations on your 25th Anniversary !! That’s a big one..

    Love, Suganya

    Hey, Suganya, good to hear from you!

    I should make the dhansak again and put a better picture there that does more justice to the dish than that brown picture!

  27. Catching up on your posts – happy 25th anniv and here’s wishing you many more to come! Laughed at your comments on your hair and while I’ve almost given up hope of thinness or even slimness, I keep hoping I won’t go grey just yet. And that when I do, it will have a nice and stylish silvery salt and pepper effect.
    Do tell me the secrets to getting 30 comments in this day and age. My blog anniversary post (which a friend disapproved of and described as whiny), yielded half that! I, of course, enjoy reading your blog but haven’t caught up with recent posts yet as I was away for about a month. I keep coming back for the simplicity and down-to-earth quality of your posts, keep them coming!

    Thanks, Sra! To still have enough hair, curly or straight, is a blessing in itself! Curly hair does appear more voluminous and at this stage, that is a very welcome thing!

    I am happy that so many of you gave in to my neediness and took the time to leave a comment! You are all my valued readers! πŸ™‚

  28. I delurked a few posts ago (on the Avakayya pickle post :)) – been a reader of your blog for a long time!

    Love reading your posts on travel and customs the most – the connections between cultures is fascinating.

    Happy new Year and looking forward to more posts from you this year.

    Thanks for reading, Maith! Good to hear from you again!

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