Baking Delight – Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes

Chocolate lovers, here is a super delish vegan version of your favourite chocolate cupcakes. I call these the ‘Crazy Chocolate Cupcakes’ for the reason that these rise without any effort of beating/folding the batter. The secret behind this is the use of white vinegar, which reacts with the baking powder to give it the desired fluffiness and sponginess.

I made these for my family and everyone loved the spongy, melt-in-the-mouth cupcakes. Since these turned out to be perfect for me, I decided to share the recipe with you all, with some handy tips and suggestions from my experience of baking these.

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Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ Cups of All Purpose Flour (Maida)
  • 1 Cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Cup Water (at room temperature)
  • 2 tbsp Cocoa Powder
  • 4-6 tbsp Vegetable Oil
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Essence
  • 1-2 tsp Baking Powder
  • ½ – 1 tbsp White Vinegar
  • Pinch of salt

For Baking:

  • Oven Preheated at 180⁰C or 350⁰F
  • Greased cupcake moulds /moulds with cupcake liners

For Decorating:

  • Nutella Hazelnut Chocolate Spread* (Nothing beats Nutella…yummy)
    • I tried using Rostaa** Chocolate Hazelnut Spread this time
  • Crushed Roasted Almonds/Cashew Nuts
  • Cadbury Gems/Nestle Smarties

Method:

  • Sift all dry ingredients, i.e., flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking powder in a bowl
  • Add sugar to the dry ingredient mix
  • Add vinegar, oil and vanilla extract to the dry mix
  • Pour a cup of water to the bowl and mix all the ingredients well to form a smooth batter
  • Fill the greased/lined cupcake moulds up to ¾ of their depth/height and place them in the preheated oven and bake for 15-20 minutes
  • Check after 15minutes with a toothpick, if it comes out clean the cupcakes are baked. If not, bake for 5-10 more minutes
  • Repeat the process with the remaining batter to make more cupcakes
  • Let the cupcakes completely cool down
  • Decorate with chocolate spread, nuts and gems

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Tips:

  • This recipe makes around 15 cupcakes with the entire batter, but the numbers may vary depending on the size of your cupcake moulds
  • In case you do not wish to make an entire batch of 15-20 cupcakes, reduce the quantity of ingredients provided in the recipe to half each
  • Try using lesser chocolate powder if you don’t like a slight bitter taste in the cupcakes
  • Some recipes suggest using baking soda instead of banking powder for extra rise after getting mixed with vinegar. But believe me it will make the cupcakes bitter. So stick to using baking powder
  • Let the cupcakes completely cool down before frosting or serving for best taste
  • These cupcakes are very spongy in themselves. However, to make them more chocolaty, sweeter and gooier, before putting the frosting make perforations with a toothpick and pour some Hershey’s chocolate syrup and then layer with chocolate spread

* The chocolate spread frosting is a super quick and healthier substitute for the buttercream frosting, primarily for the time challenged and health conscious, respectively :).

**Rostaa is an Indian brand and more economical than Nutella. It uses Belgian chocolate with a dash of Hazelnut flavour. I liked the taste and would not mind trying it the next time, but surely nothing beats the taste of Nutella.

Do try and let me know if you relished these!

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Hi, I am Rose

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Meet ‘Rose’….

‘Rose’ here is a woman and her love for family and dear ones….

Beautiful, tender and fragrant; pure, unbiased and selfless ….

The layers of the velvety petals are symbolic of the depth of her seemingly never ending love….

The love that withers when the petals of hope, support and acknowledgement begin to fall off….

But this love ends only with the very existence of ‘Rose’.

Hope you like it.

Let’s Connect More

Hi All,

Its so interesting to know that so many of us are quite active on other social media platforms. Recently, when I started a Facebook page and became more active on Twitter, I noticed many people on these platforms have a blog on WordPress.

Frankly, I find it a tad difficult to go to different profiles and check if they are fellow bloggers and might share similar interest. Its always good to find familiar faces in a new world and now that so many of us are connected here via our blogs, let’s connect with each other elsewhere as well.

Below are the snapshots of my Facebook Page and Twitter and Pinterest profiles, respectively. I will be happy to connect with you all of any of these.

If you wish to connect, simply click on the image or the caption to get to the respective page/profile.

Also, please don’t forget to share your social media URL in the comments, I will be glad to hit a like or follow 🙂

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A Homemaker’s World on Facebook

My Soul, My Sanctuary!

What does the word ‘Sanctuary’ bring to your mind at its very first mention? A safe haven, a nature reserve or a place of worship are the meanings that come to my mind instantly. Further, being a homemaker by choice, my home, as for many is certainly my sanctuary, a place where I find ultimate mental, physical and emotional satiety.

But as I think one step ahead, about attaining the satisfaction and feeling connected with myself, the ultimate sanctum sanctorum I find is in my soul and believe that every single human being’s place of hope, satisfaction, and sanctity lies within their souls.

There is no place of worship in the world that can miraculously deliver the desires of your mind and heart, unless you soulfully embrace the desired and put every possible effort to attain what you really wish for.

I may not be in a position to say that I have achieved whatever I desired till date, but the purity of my soul, the satisfaction with what I have in life and the hope that the future holds something better for me and my loved ones, keeps me going and growing.

God had been really kind to me till 28 years of my life. Lovely family, perfect education, a job that carved my personality to finesse, lots of friends and well wishers. But then I lost my dad five years back, the first loss of life in the 28 years of my being was soul shattering. Losing a parent feels like getting a limb chopped off from you. If this was less, within six months of losing my father, I was faced with the near loss my second parent, when Mom had a heart ache and finally had to be operated to get a fresh new heart and life. That was the time when I became the Messiah for my family because I could rush from work to save my Mom by getting her the best possible medical attention in time. Pheww…those were trying times.

That was the time I really found myself growing up. A time when I had to play the role of a mother, a daughter and a friend to Mom, the phase of getting her back to normal life after losing her life partner, of recovering from a major surgery and of remoulding her from being a doting wife and parent to taking charge as the head of the family, the decision maker.

The phase was a life changing one for me as I decided to devote 100 percent of my time to home, from becoming a workaholic to a homemaker within 3 months. This was a decision I had never ever dreamt of taking in my life. And here I am today. Proud to be the person I am; prouder of the decisions I took and above all satisfied to the core.

This was a very small phase of my life, a very personal level decision that I took. But when I look from the perspective of how lucky I am to have been able to take this decision of quitting everything for my family (read the pressure of financial challenges that would not allow millions of people to take such a decision even if they wished so), I see a dawn of relief and contentment. This is what matters the most.

This was a tiny example, which may not be as hard hitting for most. But the purpose of narrating these few years of my life was to share that small decisions lead to big ones and how being answerable to one’s own self is what matters in the end.

Here I am today writing a blog, which is nothing but a sneak peek into my ever so changed, but lovable life and I am proud of it.

My soul, my sanctuary, which helps me take the most balanced and best decisions of my life, has won over any other meanings of a true sanctuary for me. Now I am aware, no matter what the future holds for me, I am sure of my decisions because I know where to go to seek help, it’s me, myself.

Ever pondered over the simple phrase, “God Helps Those Who Help Themselves” from this angle? Think about it and help yourselves.

Hope you like this.

Art and Emotions in One Frame

A few days back, when I was busy completing yet another craft project, my mom came up to me and stretched out her hand to give me something and said, ‘Can you make something for this?’ On realizing what she was handing over to me, my eyes welled up with tears. It was mom and dad’s first photograph after marriage.

They had kept it preserved since 1965 and gleefully narrated the day they had gone to get the picture clicked at a famous studio in Connaught Place, Delhi (India). A few days after their wedding mom and dad went to get their first professionally clicked photograph as a couple. On that day, dad adorned his favorite black suit and mom wore a pretty orange sari, along with her wedding jewelry. I love this photograph of mom and dad and till date we tell mom that they made for the most charming couple we have ever seen.

After we had refurnished the house some years back, the photograph had been taken off the photo frame and kept safely in a plastic wrap to make space for new show pieces and other family photos.

Ever since we lost dad a few years back, mom had very rarely mentioned to us about dad and how much she missed her life partner. That day when mom handed me the photograph felt as if she was asking me to help her revive and relive her long forgotten moments and feel dad’s presence in her life.

I could not have let go of a chance to get some positive vibes to mom’s life and especially when she was the one keen on that. That’s when I decided to make a photo frame for the picture, rather than purchasing one.

Some online tutorials and my creativity helped me create a lovely cardboard photo frame to fit my favorite photograph. I added to its beauty by using quilling art and some Fevicryl Golden Glitter Glue to decorate it.

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I was the most satisfied when the best feedback for the picture frame came from mom when she said, ‘tune to char chand laga diye humari photo par’ (An idiom used in Hindi to tell that a thing looks prettier that before).

The Photo in its frame sits beautifully on a showcase in the living room of my house and usually gets an appreciative notice from the guests.

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Hope you like this.

First 500 Likes!

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Its just been a little under two months when I published my first post on ‘A Homemaker’s World’ and I proudly mention the first 500 likes on my blog.

Thank you all for appreciating and encouraging me with your compliments every time I post on the blog.

This means a lot to me and will definitely take my zest for writing more interesting posts and articles one step ahead.

Hugs!!

Finding Art and Beauty in Home and Kitchen Chores

This post may appear to be a bit weird and rather funny to some, but I love being weird at times. Don’t you think it’s always a good idea to see beauty in everything?

The title reminds me of two of my previous photography posts called ‘Water Droplets Captured My Way’ and ‘Melting Ice’, which also befit the art and beauty in home and kitchen category. Though these captures had made me think and write about life and its deeper meanings, the following photographs make me laugh at my own sense of photography and admiring beauty.

These photographs will make it clear of what my idea of instinctive photography is and how my craving for seeking beauty even within the confines of my home makes me the person I am. Weird for some and beautiful for others! I guess each one of has that child in us, some people just keep that weirdo, that child, up and awake in their hearts. 😉

The first photograph is of a bottle gourd that I started chopping, but forgot amidst focusing on some other work. On returning after some 15-20 minutes I saw water droplets appear at the periphery of the cut bottle gourd. It looked so appealing to my eyes that I couldn’t help but photograph it against the backdrop of sunlight shining through the window. The resulting capture looked so beautiful to me that I wished to share it with all of you. 🙂

Bottlegourd

The second photograph proves that I can be an absolute manic when it comes to being imaginative and creating patterns out of nothing. Below is a pattern that got created while I was scouring the griddle with a dish washing powder. :p The design looked similar to a peacock’s feathers when opened completely (absolutely my imagination). I was intrigued by the formation, liked it and clicked it.

Griddle art

The only words that come to my mind after writing this post are ‘always keep your childlike nature alive, it keeps you going during the toughest of times and most humdrum of tasks.’ I have kept the child in me alive and I am absolutely proud of it.

Hope you like this.