Tag Archives: Sweets

Kokis

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It’s coming up to Sri Lankan New Year and Mr C’s day care is holding a celebration. There are a few Sri Lankan kids and a Sri Lankan teacher so it’s a big deal this year. They’re making coconut rice onsite and dressing up in traditional garb.I was wracking my brain trying to think of an easy, uniquely traditional treat to make his friends….and then it came to me…kokis of course. Not only is it not too arduous to make, I thought there was a good chance that even the picky toddlers might enjoy them. It’s also gluten free, nut free and hopefully child-friendly.

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Kokis is a traditional Sri Lankan snack, often served at Sri Lankan New Year. A crispy, cookie-like treat, made of coconut milk and rice flour and deep-fried till crispy. Of the many Sri Lankan treats that grace the New Year table, this is by far one of the easiest. It does require a kokis mould, made of metal, and attached to a long handle, which may be a deterrent. But, they are available in Sri Lankan spice stores in many places outside of Sri Lanka. If not, ask your kindly relatives in Sri Lanka to send you one, the next time the ask “what can we send?” .

A new mould will take a little “breaking in” and you may find the batter will stick to the mould for a little while. Keep at it, it ill eventually come good.

When Ammi made kokis, she always turned the last bit of batter into “chilli” kokis by adding chilli powder. Much as she’d done for her dad growing up. Chilli kokis go especially well with a nice cool beer or ‘lion lager’.  See below for my take on “chilli kokis”.

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup of rice flour
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1 egg
  • salt

For Chilli Kokis

  • I cup of kokis mixture
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp. of garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

Preparation

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In a bowl add salt to the flour and mix well.  Then add the egg and coconut milk into the flour and whisk until no lumps remain. The consistency should be similar to a thin pancake batter. Cover the bowl and keep it aside.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan on medium heat. When the oil is hot place the Kokis mould in the oil for about a minute.

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Carefully dip the mould in the batter, making sure that the mould is well covered on all sides, but not the top.

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Place the now batter covered mould in the hot oil and hold in place for about 30 seconds. At this point, slip the kokis out of the mould, shaking slightly if needed, to loosen. Use a cocktail stick or skewer to prise the kokis away if it needs extra help. Fry until the kokis is golden and evenly coloured.

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Pull out of the oil and drain well  before serving. Will keep in an air tight container for a few days.

I love to serve mine dusted with a generous sprinkling of icing sugar. It goes perfectly with a cup of tea.

Chilli Kokis

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To make the chilli kokis mix the batter with all the spices and half the cayenne. Make as above and sprinkle with the remaining cayenne before serving.

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Filed under "Something" Free Cooking, Short-Eats, Snacks and Sides, Sri Lankan Food, Uncategorized

Sticky-Date Puddings

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A few years ago, while I was still actively caking I decided that the world needed a sticky date cupcake. It was easy, I basically baked the mix instead of steaming it and turned the butterscotch sauce into a buttercream.  Then I tasted it and I couldn’t stop. I think I had it for dinner one night. Really, the only thing better than butterscotch sauce is butterscotch butter cream.  I decided to stop making it, for the sake of my own health.

I think it was only a few years ago that I realized that what us Aussies call “Sticky date pudding” is what the English refer to as “Sticky toffee pudding”. Thanks Rick Stein for setting me straight on that one. Whatever name it goes by, this is truly one of the best desserts in the world! The kind of dish that I can’t pass up on a menu, that makes me want to lick the plate in fancy restaurants…you know that sort of thing?

A lot of pudding these days are baked, giving them a more “cakelike” texture. Adding water to the baking dish here gives it a nice sponginess that makes it more like the traditional pudding.

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Ingredients
  • 180g dates, pitted and roughly chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 1/2 tsp. bicarbonate of soda
  • 3/4 cup  firmly packed brown sugar
  • 60g butter, softened chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup self-raising flour

Butterscotch sauce

  • 50g butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup cream
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Preparation

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C (160 degrees C fan-forced) and grease either an 8 inch cake tin or a set of moulds. I used a set of greased silicon baking cups for mine.

Place dates and water in a saucepan and bring to the boil over a high heat.

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Take the dates off the heat and add the bicarb (baking) soda. Set aside to cool and stir occasionally. The dates will break down as you do this. If you like a really smooth pudding, place the dates in a food processor. I like little chunks of date throughout my pudding so I skip the processor.

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Broken down dates

Beat the butter and sugar using a mixer. Gradually add the eggs one at a time. The mixture will become light and fluffy. Add the cooled dates to the egg mixture and stir. Add the flour and give it one last mix.

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Pour the mixture into the tin or divide between the baking cups you are using.  You want the cups about 2/3rds full. Place the puddings in a large baking dish and pour enough water to come half way up the cups.

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Bake for 40 minutes until the puddings are golden on top and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.

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The butterscotch sauce is simple. Simply place all the ingredients to boil in the saucepan over medium heat. Watch for the sugar to dissolve and then reduce the sauce for a few minutes until it thickens slightly.

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Filed under Desserts, Sri Lankan Food, Sweet Treats

Kiri (Milk) Toffee

On occasion, at unreasonable times during the night (FYI 9pm is unreasonable when you have a baby) I get the urge to cook or bake. When I was pregnant I would make caramel popcorn at 10pm and then refuse to go to bed till it was all finished. Then I’d complain all night about feeling so sick. Nowadays I’m a little more responsible, but the urge to concoct late at night still strikes. These toffees were the result of a late night cooking session.
If you’re afriad of sugar, look away. This recipe has A LOT! It’s definitely a sometimes food,in fact I made these, kept a few for Mr Firehouse and myself and sent the rest off to work with him to make his workmates fat.
This is a Sri Lankan classic. Cloyingly sweet but quite simple to make with only a few ingredients and a little love and patience. Have everything ready to go before you start this recipe.
Ingredients
  • I tin of sweetened condensed mik
  • 250g of sugar
  • 4 tbsp. water
  • 2 cardomon pods seeds removed and group
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 tbsp. cashew nuts (optional)

Preparation

Lay a piece of baking paper on a tray, ready to pour the hot toffee onto.

In a non-stick saucepan place the sugar and water and place on a medium heat. Stir until all the sugar is dissolved. Add the cardamon seeds, condensed milk and vanilla and stir.

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Heres the hard part, keep stirring. The whole mixture will keep changing from beige to brown to dark brown.

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Getting darker

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Starting to come away from the sides

Eventually it will begin to form a ball and come away from the sides. At this point add the nuts (if you’re using) and pour onto the prepared dish. HP1B8767

You can use an oiled, heat proof spatula to flatten and shape this toffee. Sometimes though, the rustic-ness is nice.

As soon as it’s cool enough to touch, use an oiled knife to cut into squares!If it gets too hard, use a serrated knife to cut it up.

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Filed under Sri Lankan Sweets, Sweet Treats