Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Milk cake OR Why I am not blogging regularly.


Rich? Oh yes!

Why did I not blog for the last ten days or so? Have I lost the interest? Have I not been cooking? Or have I just been too lazy to take photographs?

Well, none of the above. I haven't been blogging because my broadband connection was down; that's why.
Many of you have asked me in the past one month to write about my experience of moving back to India and how I find life here now. One thing that I would like to point out in this context is that we as a people are laid-back. Please don't misunderstand me. I absolutely respect my country. I wouldn't have come back otherwise. However, every country or community has a few flaws, and they can be corrected only if you step back for a while and watch it like an onlooker. Many of you will agree that living outside India gives you that perspective easily.
And I am sure that many of you will agree with me when I say that 'time' does not put as much pressure on us as it does on some other communities. For example,

- we give unrealistic deadlines. We are always too afraid to say that it will take 'one full week'. We always only use the word 'soon'.

- we never are punctual. Although everybody seems to be in a deadly hurry on the road, nobody reaches anywhere on time. Why the hurry then?

- we do not value others' time. We just don't.

The moral of the story is that I had to live with a dead broadband connection for about ten days. But believe me, I have not been wasting my time during this period. I have been cooking and photographing while cooking quite religiously.

Like I finally managed to try out this dessert, the recipe for which I had for the last three years. Shall I straight away head to the recipe without wasting any more 'time' of yours then? :)


White goods? :)
Clockwise from top left: condensed milk, plain milk, Paneer

Recipe for Milk Cake
(Can you please please suggest a better name? I know that you are good at it.)

Makes 12 small servings.


400g. sweetened condensed milk (I used one tin of this.)
250g. finely grated Paneer (I used store-bought.)
½ cup milk OR water (Please see Step 1.)
2-3 tsp castor or powdered sugar (optional; I didn't use.)
2 tbsp Ghee

saffron strands, chopped nuts for garnishing (I used this store-bought blend.)


1. Combine the condensed milk and grated Paneer in a non-stick pan. In case you are using up the entire tin of condensed milk, add ½ cup of water to it, shake vigorously and add this 'milk' to the pan. Otherwise, add ½ cup of plain milk.(Don't you just admire my sense of 'economy' in the kitchen? :))
2. Add sugar, if using and put this mixture to boil on medium-high heat. Stir continuously.
3. After about 10 minutes, add 1 tbsp of Ghee along the sides of the pan. The mixture of will start getting thicker now. It will move as one mass as you stir.


4. Take the pan off heat and let it cool for about five minutes.
5. In the meanwhile, grease the sides of a mould with the rest of the Ghee. Spread the saffron strands and/or chopped nuts on it. If you wish, you could add some to the mixture in the pan too.
6. Spread the mixture evenly into the greased mould and allow it to set. No refrigeration is required for it to set.

After about an hour, unmould the 'Milk Cake' onto a decorative dish or platter. Garnish it more, if you wish, cut into pieces/wedges and serve.


I made this dessert for my younger sister's bridal shower. Or shall I say 'one bridal shower'? There are two more planned in the next 15 days. Is the foodie in me HAPPY or what? :)

Now I need to rush this post to the Festive Food Fair organised by Anna. After all, it has a long way to go. Australia isn't around the corner, is it? :)

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Ashwini said...

Milk cake seems just fine to me...the 'milk' part tells you what's in it and the 'cake' part makes your mouth water :-)
Good to have you back buddy.

Anonymous said...

I love all sweets and milk. a must try this week end.


Mika said...

It has a more milk halva texture, no? Looks tasty as usual, Vaishali. I would like to know more about how easy or difficult the adjustment process has been so far. We have a similar plan to move to India in a couple of years. I have been hearing and even sort of seeing that people abroad are more adjustable and cherish Indian traditions and foods more than upper middle class families in India. Not to start a controversial topic, but any thing you notice about the westernization...

Krithika said... are so funny. Have to agree with you on this "nobody reaches anywhere on time".
Milk cake it is ... like the name. Looks delicious ! please make this for me when I meet you in person next year :-)

Anonymous said...

Hi Vaishali, I'm sure this doesn't hang around long -- how about Disappearing Milk Cake ;)
Whatever you call it, it looks just delicious. It's nice to have you back!

Anonymous said...

YUM YuM YUm yUMM !!!! YUMM !
WIll lookout for a milkmaid can nextime I go to a Indian stores..

manju bansal said...

Great recipe Vaishali. It is an easy to make sweet. Before coming to Chandigarh I was in Mumbai for 9 years. Whenever we visited Lonavla, we also visited Pune. I like Chitle's Bhakharvadi and chivda.

Lakshmik said...

The paneer is a variation in this recipe. Interesting!

Anupama said...

Hey vaishali, this dessert looks scrumptious and definitely festive. About another name for it, I'll just have to give it another think. Though Milk Cake sounds good.

Vaishali said...

Ashwini, the 'cake' part makes your mouth water...
hahahaha...Great to have you again at my blog, Buddy. :)

Now that's something we have common between the two of us, Ratna.

It is a rather vast topic, Maha. The adjustment process isn't easy, but it also has some great rewards. One thing is for sure: You have to be absolutely determined about the return so that you can take even the negative part in your stride. Apart from that, it also depends upon 'where' you come back to. And hey, it wasn't easy to get adjusted to the place outside India either, remember? :)

Sure, Krithika. I'll look forward to our meeting. :)

Linda, 'Disappearing Milk Cake'? I like it. :)

Priya, if you too are a Milkmaid fan like me, look out for two cans then. One for the Barfi and another for 'just like that'. :)

So, when is your next visit to Pune, Manju?

Paneer adds a great texture to this dish, Lakshmi.

I guess, I'll accept this name then, Anupama. :)

Shammi said...

paneer cake??? PANEER cake? Wow, there's one thing I didnt think I'd want to make! But now I do :)

Jaya M said...

dear Vaishali,
the milk/paneer cake looks delicious, thanks for sharing .

Mandira said...

the milk cake looks delicious... bet it disappeared in no time!

Anonymous said...

Hi Vaishali,
Great Indian 'no bake cake' ! I like the way you write. I feel there is a natural flow in your posts.Do write more than about food.BTW ,thanks for your 'urgent' compliment on my site.I luv the way you said it.

Praveena said...

Oh so rich! This is just going to go straight to my hips. So am I going to not eat. Hell No! :)

Mamatha said...

Call it spinach cake and I think I'll still eat it! Good to have you back - does that mean we will be seeing more posts from you soon? Congratulations to your sister.

Btw, I posted a quiz on my site when you were away - have a look at it when you get a chance.

jayshree said...

'A Rose is a rose...' never mind the name.Looks so fluffy & soft hm..tempting. Nice write-up too.

Nandan said...

wow, looks tasty. On a lighter note, since this recipe contains so many milk related products (milk, condensed milk, paneer) - how about kSheerasaagar? (pun intended) (kSheer = milk in Sanskrit)

Sia said...

wow vaishali,
it looks delicious

Nabeela said...

Oh Vaishali, it looks delicious! Does it by any chance taste like khalakhand?

Vani said...

Though I'm not much of a sweets fan, milk cake is one of the few sweets that I really enjoy eating. This recipe looks easy enough to make. Will try it sometime.
And hey, do continue to write about your "settling back in India" experiences. They make for such interesting read!

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You are back. You are back again.
The cake looks delicious. So it seems like you are all settled down. Take pictures of you kitchen and please post them when you have 'time'. :D
I am back too. Check the updates on my site.

Mrs. K said...

That was good to read. The cake looks good.

Rajesh &Shankari said...

Loved the pic. Vaishali, I made Shankarpali this weekend and followed your recipe to the T and it came out fantastic..thanks a ton for sharing the recipe

Lakshmi said...

wow such a nice post. good to have u back

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

I fully agree with you, Vaishali, on what you have written about our country and our own people. We were in Dubai recently for almost one month and after coming back, we could not stop comparing Pune/Mumbai with Dubai. Life really changes after foreign trip.

My Broadband is down for last 2 months just because the On/Off button of Router was broken. Then I connected my PC thru MTNL landlines only to load lots and lots of virus into PC. Finally my father went to Tel Exchange and managed to get new Router. Now last four days I am struggling to reconnect Broadband. Well such is life back here.

Finally about the Milk Cake. It’s Utterly Butterly Delicious.

I feel that you must organize or participate in Food Festival for us to really enjoy your recipe and blog.

l_0oio0_l said...

well i have a more simple recepie for this .....using microwave....
what i do is...take ricota cheese sugar and milk powder in equal quantity....and put one stick of Lake O Lakes butter and microwave the mixture until it turns brown and u get the right textue.....datz it! :-) u can try it...

for small ricota cheese pack use one butter stick...if u use big ricota cheese use 2 sticks...

Vini K said...

Hi Vaishali,thanks for visiting my blog and the wonderful comment.I am almost blushing now!!:-)Yes,I do like baking and esp always on the lookout for easily available egg substitutes,not something like Ener G egg substitutes etc.

But he way,your milk cake looks absolutely inviting.I make kalakand almost similarly too.Your write up is great.

Two more bridal showers,eh?well dear,enjoy-both cooking andserving your guests and eating well as having fun,don't forget that part.:D

Seema Bhat said...

vaishali :
first and foremost i wanna let you know that i luv your name..and now to this milk cake recipe WOW i mean i luv anything made from milk except milk in its own form...and i remember mom used to make dood peda's etc with milk to make me have some milk and this one looks amazing ...will try it soon
Thanks for posting and BTW your blog is beautiful as well


Anonymous said...

Good recipe. Milk cake sounds good. Or you can call it by its traditional name - kalakand. I love this sweet.

Mansi said...

Vaishali, this is a really lovely's available in India in sweet stores under the name of "mawa burfi", and i used to love eating it!!! I recently made Tres-leches cake, menas cake with 3 types of u can imagine how loaded that one would be?!!

Unknown said...

hi vaishali!!i got introduced to the blog world very recently and since then i have been blog hopping.i dont remember from whose blog i found you but then i must tell you i loved your blog is my passion and i have been trying the recipes from the blog i made your milk cake and it has turned out to be really yummy.thank you.

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hello I live in UAE and here in my city there are living thousands of indian so around my house there are many indian of them is PURANMAL than i discovered a desert there MILK cake i ate and i loved it ..i asked them the ingredients and they said only milk and sugar ..but i was sure there is something else you re giving me the exact ingredients thank you day when I go back to my country and when i missed milk cake i ll practise your recipe thenk you ..coz there is no indian restaurants in mine

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