And I'm back. After what feels like aeons. These past few months have been crazy. I wanted to throw A a homestyle party for his third birthday. For the longest time, I wondered how Amma managed to do everything at home for our birthday parties. Only our birthday cakes came from Adyar Bakey House. Everything else was home made. I also wanted to make his birthday cake from scratch. So, I signed up for a couple of Wilton Method cake decoration classes.
Many of the things I made for his party warrant individual posts on this blog. We had a jungle themed rainbow cake, lemon ricotta cupcakes, chocolate cupcakes, coriander buns, cheese, jam and chutney sandwiches, potato cheese buns, semia upma, samosas and potato smiles. We had games such as pin the tail on the donkey and musical chairs. In short, I tried to recreate one of my childhood birthday parties for A. We all had a great time.
But all this kept me very busy. And kept me away from the blog. Since I posted the last post on this blog, I've cooked and baked a great deal. I've tried some new recipes, I've tweaked some old ones. I've sometimes fallen into a cooking rut - cooking similar food everyday simply because it doesn't require much thinking.
However, I had to make the time today. I'm already a good five days late. The Singing Chef turned 7 on May 2nd this year. We hit a milestone barely 5 posts ago when I reached the magic number of 600 posts. And now it is time for another. I will stick to my usual way of celebrating with something sweet. I present to you - Apple Cheese Tarts.
For the pastry:
1 cup Flour
1/3 cup Butter (cold and diced)
2-3 tbsp Ice Cold Water
1/2 tsp Salt
Place the flour, butter and salt in a mixing bowl. Rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Gradually add the water and knead into a soft dough. Do not knead too much. Roll out the dough 1/4" thick and stamp out circles slightly bigger than the diameter of a muffin mould.
For the filling:
2 Apples, peeled and diced (I used Granny Smith)
1/4 cup Sugar
1/2 tsp Cinnamon Powder
1/4 cup Cream Cheese
Place the apples and sugar along with the cinnamon powder in a pan. Add 1/4 cup of water and cook over a low flame until the apples are cooked. Stir in the cream cheese. Allow to cool.
Preheat the oven to 200C/400F.
Lightly grease the muffin pan. Place one circle of pastry in each of the moulds. Fill the cups with the filling. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
This recipe yielded 12 tarts.
Allow the tarts to cool a little before savouring them. This is the stuff desserts should be made of: a little sweet, a little salty, and a tad bit tart.
Thank you all for coming along on this wonderful journey. Seven years is a major milestone in any relationship. This one is no different. My cup overflows with joy and gratitude for the friends I've made, the support I've received and the love I've felt. Happy birthday, Singing Chef. I say this a lot and still mean it every time I do: I never expected you to become what you have. But I am so glad you have.