Thursday, December 13, 2012

Snapshot of Cake Baking Class in Trivandrum

Everyone's hand at Christmas Cake Mixing 

Christmas Cake - Fondant Icing

Plum Cake with Fondant Covering

Smiles...Happy Fondant 

First Attempt with Fondant Icing

Students with Fondant Cakes

Exploring North Indian Cuisine - Cooking Lessons

Paneer dish in Progress

Koftas Ready 

All Smiles at the first experiences

Grinding Spices - Indian Way

Rolling Perfect Roti's ( Indian Bread)

Roti, Nan, Malai Kofta, Matter Paneer, and Kadai Veg

Enjoying the Indian Spread  
Here's a snapshot of Indian Cooking lessons conducted at my residence in Bangalore. In this class, I had two lovely ladies from Australia, who were big fans of Indian food.

At the class, these two Aussie ladies got hand-on experience in preparing popular North Indian dishes. It was wonderful to see their excitement when they made Naan, Roti and Parata. Also they enjoyed tasting the fruits of their labour.

Baking Ingredient Store in Pettah

Choice of Baking Ingredients at Choice Trade Links

Choice Trade Links - Chakai, Trivandrum
Another happy news for home bakers in Trivandrum. One more shop selling all sorts of baking ingredients in our city. This store - Choice Trade Links is located at Chakai, close to by-pass road.

You get all the baking ingredients:
  • Baking powder
  • All types of essence
  • Cake margarine 
  • Icing Sugar
  • Chocolate (White, Milk and Dark)
  • Glycerin
  • Gelatin
  • All dry fruits
In my few shopping trips to Choice Trade Links I'm delighted with their customer service, something which is a rarity in Trivandrum. Once they opened their shop during break time. Also, they patiently answered my question over the phone and they even called me back when the stock arrived.

For home bakers in Trivandrum, if you're staying this part of Trivandrum, then Choice Trade Links would be thought of. Also, I call and ask if they  supply small quantities as they mostly deal with wholesale quantities.

Phone : +91 471 2476171, 2474799
Mobile : + 91 9995055255, 9388643061

Website URL:

Other shops selling baking ingredients: Pack N Bake, Chalai Trivandrum, The Baker's Walk at Nanthencode, Stains at Attakulangara Road

Monday, November 19, 2012

Christmas Cake Fruit Mixing Session - 2012

All Hands on the Deck ( Mixing Bowl)

Mixing Dry Fruits in Rum &Caramel Syrup

Baked Cake ( Share it)

Cake & Homemade Wine 

All Smiles! 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Grand New Start -Wedding Cake Venture

I have made it finally!!! so excited after finishing my first wedding cake with the help of my mentor and guide Joonie Tan. A big hug & thanks to her.

Lamb Do Pyaza -Mughlai Dish

Lamb Do Pyaza
Lamb Do Pyaza is a Mughlai dish. Onion is added in two different stages, first stage is to add finely chopped onions  for seasoning  which helps to  flavour the meat during cooking and then the second stage is frying the onions and adding it towards  the end to give a sweetness of the caremalised onions to the curry. Adding the onions in two stage has given it the name of   “do-pyaza”  

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Savarin Cake with Fresh Berries

This classic French yeast cake is soaked with a rum syrup and glazed, then served with fresh cream and a mixture of fresh berries. Choose your favorite fruits in season.

Christmas Cake Fruit Mixing Ceremony Bangalore

While there is a tradition world over of soaking the Christmas Cake fruits well in advance to get that perfect Christmas cake, I also see it as a fun activity, a celebration where I like to share the joy with my Students, Friends and all who love to bake. Call 9379398865 for registration.

In 2014, I've Christmas cake mix starting from November till December. Check my Facebook Page for details of fruit mixing ceremony Bangalore.

Christmas Cake Mix
Looking forward to see you :-)

Marina Charles

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Iced Madeira Cake

Dripping Ice on Mardeira Cake

This cake is named after the wine it was traditionally served with. This cake has a firm texture with a buttery flavor and best served with hot custard.

Slice of Mardeira Cake


Butter               175 gms
Caster Sugar    175 gms
Lemon rind         1
Eggs                   3
Flour                  1 Cup + 1 tablespoon
Milk                   2 tablespoon
Lemon Juice       1 tablespoon

Icing Sugar        175 gms
Lemon Juice       2-3 tablespoon
Lemon Curd       2 tsp warmed.


Preheat the oven to 160 degree for ten mts
Place butter and sugar in a large bowl and beat together until pale and creamy
Beat in the lemon rind then gradually beat in one egg at a time.
Sift flour and baking powder thrice and fold in gently to the above mixture.
Fold in the milk and lemon juice
Spoon the mixture to the tin and bake for 45mts or until well risen, golden brown
Cool for 30 mts and then turn onto a wire rack to cool completely.

For Icing

Sift icing sugar into a bowl.
Add the lemon juice and stir to make a smooth and thick icing.
Gently spread the icing over top of the cake.
Drizzle the warmed lemon curd over the icing and drag a skewer through the icing to create a swirled effect.

Serve the cake with hot custard.

Thank you for your Gift

After my baking session on Saturday 27th October 2012 at Trivandrum, Saumya Thomas (who had attended my previous sessions last month) gifted me a small red cover. She said it's a gift from her mom..

With excitement, I opened the cover and to my delight I found two books with one page bookmarked.  Cooking for God - Which of my talents can I use more fully for God's purpose? - It is a story of two men who quit job and opened a restaurant and they wanted to put their cooking talents to work for God, using part of their income to sponsor mission trips.

Wow!!!! This one small gift has brought me such an incredible feeling of joy!!! It is a reminder of how to be thankful for seemingly small things in life. Yet, that one small gift has blown my heart open wide. 

Mrs Mary(Saumya's mom) with the beautiful, kind heart; with the graceful manners had marked the article - Cooking for God"  is teaching me how to be thankful in ways both small and large. Two words: “Thank you" that's all I want to tell her.

So I want to say , “Thank you to all the lovely people whom I come across everyday” Thank you for reading this blog post. Thank you for being part of my  work,for allowing me to live and share my talents with you. Thank you for sharing your time and your thoughts with me. And thank you for being YOU. I give profound thanks for you.

Many Blessings,

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Learn Baking - Classes in Trivandrum

Cake Baking Workshop in Trivandrum 

Course details in brief: Cupcakes, Advanced Cupcakes, Fondant icing and Butter Cream Icing workshop in Trivandrum 

Cupcakes Lessons – (10:00 AM)

In this 3 hr baking class, students will learn to make four types of cupcakes, vanilla teacake and fudge icing. This class is best for beginners and those who love cupcakes.
Cupcakes ( from the scratch)

Advanced Cupcake – ( 3 PM)
Learn four varieties of cupcakes. Red velvet cupcakes with frosting, Mocha cupcake with butter cream icing, lemon cupcake with lemon curd and molten lava cupcake

Butter Cream Icing – ( 3:PM to 6:PM)

Course details:
Learn to make butter cream icing
Coloring, piping techniques,
Designs on cake, Make roses using rose pin
Daises, leaves etc

(Free tool kit for each student)

Buttercream Icing - simple Designs on Cakes

Buttercream Icing - Cakes

Fondant Decoration – Basic Level (3:PM to 6:PM)

Fondant decoration is increasingly used to create a smooth cake finish and decorate cake with spectacular designs. In this 4 hr Fondant workshop, students will to make decorative flowers, leaves, bows, ribbons, use fondant cutters and learn how to cover cake with fondant icing.

(Free fondant starter kit for each participant)
Fondant Icing - Beginner level
Fondant Cakes Made by Students

Fondant Decoration - Made as per the given theme

Class location: Kumarapuram, Trivandrum

If you like to know the latest class schedule, pls contact me at 9379398865 or email email me at

To see the class details, pls visit my Facebook Page, or blog or website.

Many Thanks,

Marina Charles

Friday, October 19, 2012

Lemon and Blueberry Polenta Cake

Did I Get Close to the Recipe Book?

Lemon and Blueberry Polenta Cake 

Slice of Polenta Cake
Polenta is used in place of flour in this cake, giving it a lovely texture and vibrant colors. This Cake is delicious served warm with a dollop of creme fraiche and some extra berries.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Garden Cupcakes

Garden Cupcakes

The 'grass' is one of the cutest icing effects and can be used for any theme... Garden cupcakes designs are very popular.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Pav Bhaji

Pav Bhaji which is all time favorite for most of us, Enjoy this Street Food

  1. 3 cups of  Vegetables ( potato, carrots, green beans, peas, cauliflower)
  2. 1 cup of chopped Onions
  3. 1 chopped Green chili or to taste.
  4. 1 cup of chopped Tomato
  5. 1 tsp Ginger garlic paste
  6. 1/2 cups of Water or as needed
  7. 2 tbsp Oil
  8. 1 tbsp Butter cubes 

Masala powders:
  1. 1 tsp Red chili powder or taste
  2. 3/4 tsp Coriander powder or to taste
  3. 1/2 tsp Fennel powder or to flavor
  4. 1/2 tsp Garam masala powder or to flavor
  5. 1/4 tsp Amchoor powder
  6. 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
  7. 1/4 tsp Cumin powder
  8. Salt to taste

For Garnishing             
  1. 1/4 cup chopped Onions
  2. Minced corriander leaves
  3. Required lemon slices
  4. Slit green chilies
  5. 1 tbsp cubed butter

  • Chop the vegetables and cook in the pressure cooker
  • Drain the water from the vegetables and keep aside
  • Heat oil and add chopped onions and green chilly and sauté till it is golden brown
  • Add ginger garlic paste and sauté for a minute till the raw smell goes away.
  • Now add the chopped tomatoes  and stir it for few minutes.
  • Add  all the  masalas and mix well and then add the cooked vegetables and bring to boil.
  • Now mash the vegetables gently and add salt
  • Cook it in low heat for minimum 10 minutes.
  • Now  add butter  to the curry
  • Serve hot with Pav bread.

Friday, October 12, 2012

2012 Christmas Cake – Time to start mixing

'Is the season to prepare your dried fruit and set it soaking. Soak it for six weeks and you will have one of the fabulous Christmas Cake you have ever made

Christmas Cake Ingredients Mixing
Dried Fruit for Cake
  • 200g raisins
  • 100g Cherries chopped
  • 200g Cashewnuts  Chopped
  • 200g walnuts
  • 175g dried figs, chopped
  • 100g dates, chopped
  • 25g Orange /Ginger peel
  • The total of all the dried  fruits will be 1 kg, you can add whatever dried fruits you like.

200 ml Rum
cinnamon stick - 1

Mix the one kg of all the mixed dried fruit (walnuts, almonds, cashews,raisins, dates, cherry,candied peal), 
  1. Chopped into small pieces and soak them in rum and cinnamon stick.
  2. Put this mixture into an airtight container and keep it in your kitchen and not in the fridge
  3. You need to mix it every day for the first week and for the other five days mix it once in a week.
  4. After six weeks your fruits are ready for  bake
Enjoy baking your Christmas Cake.


N.B. To learn Christmas cake, get in touch with me for personlised call. Reach me at mennasdelight at [gmail dot com] or give a ring at 9379398865.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Wine Trial with Four Seasons at Royal Orchid Bangalore

Nectar of the Gods
Here's another first in my life...Invite to Four Seasons wine tasting and food paring event organized by GingerClaps. Event was held at Royal Orchid Hotel, Bangalore, just 10 min drive from my house.

Four Seasons brand ambassador Miss Earth Shamita Singha
Ms Shamita, gave a good intro on wine, and spoke well on how to taste wine like a pros. As a newbie to wine tasting, she explained how to discern flavor of red and white wine and all tit bits of wine tasting.She also took us to the journey of Four Seasons wine, its special flavor and history. Kudos to Shamita!
Master Chef - Live cooking demo 
I picked up few good tips about Thai cooking and Chef was kind enough to explain the ingredients used in Thai cuisine.

Chicken starters on grill 

Decked for Special Appearance - Four Seasons Wine 

Curtains Down with a great Dessert @Royal Orchid 

Event : Four Seasons Wine and food paring event
Location: Royal Orchid, Bangalore
Date : August 19, 2012

Story in a nutshell..    Thanks to Four Seasons Wine, I had a whole new pleasing experience and learned how to look, smell, taste wine, starting from the basics.

Now I can ready to join the league of wine tasters and open my mind to deeply smell thousands of unique scents...