From traditional plum cakes, kalkals and gingerbread cookies to homemade wine and seasonal dessert jars, your list for Santa’s season just got tastier
City homebakers are spreading seasonal cheer like never before with their delectable range of treats that promise to gratify and pamper your soul. For pure indulgence and gifting pleasures, pick these goodies to get started on your jolly good season. Text: Preeti GT
Christmas like red velvet cakes, and Sundari Sarita of Baker’s Nook at Anna Nagar takes this up a notch by incorporating these flavours in fudgy brownies. With a pretty top layer of cream cheese, the brownies are your warm Christmas hugs on a plate. Also fantastic is Sarita’s Spiced Orange Cake Loaf—a humble yet deliciously moist butter cake that is generously spiked (not stuffed) with orange peel, cloves, star anise, an orange juice-based stewing liquor and more. @ Rs 90 per piece. Details: 9884841414
For a twist to traditional Christmas picks, Smitha Kuttayya’s X’mas cakes can be made vegan or gluten-free. While the former calls for oil rather than butter or eggs, the gluten-free version with almond flour reigns supreme with its formidable taste and softness. While Kuttayya’s traditional sweet crunchy kalkals and homemade fruit wines make for a sweet addition to your Christmas feast, don’t miss her homemade blend for a Baileys Irish Cream using whiskey, condensed milk, fresh cream and more such indulgent ingredients.
@ Rs 1,500 per kilo onwards (kalkals). Details: 9444385425
Ginger bread Cookies @ Kilpauk
Also called Brand Snaps, these non-alcoholic cookies from Gazeenasulu Kunhamed give you a ginger hit from the first bite, and the spice lingers long after. While the simple crunchy ones that use brown sugar last for upto a week, do try the pretty ones laced with royal icing-themed
decorations that make for quick give-aways to loved ones.
@ Rs 60 for each. Orders accepted up to December 22. Details: 9840970353
Jar desserts @ Tiruvanmayur
Chocolate lovers will be delighted with the rich and dark Black Forest or Nutella-Ferrero Rocher dessert jars by Deepasri Kar (known for her Nolen Gur cupcakes). A layered treat, the dessert is made of chocolate cake, and chocolate sauce sandwiched between Nutella cream cheese, while being capped with crunchy bites of Ferrero Rocher.
@ Rs 250 per 200ml jar. Orders accepted up to December 23. Details: 9884868162
For the past 30 years, Punitha Coilpillai has been baking a unique version of the plum cake. Coilpillai processes all the ingredients at home, which includes making ginger chips, candied peels, fruit preserves and more—all soaked in a secret concoction with rum for numerous weeks. A traditional family recipe, the cake is made up of 90 per cent fruits, and the end product is sweet, dark, dense and gooey. @ Rs 1,000 per kilo.
X’mas Macarons@ Nungambakkam
The flavours of Christmas are decadently used in these vanilla and cinnamon macarons, sandwiched with a rich dark chocolate ganache or marmalade-white chocolate filling. Piped royal icing snowflakes add an adorable touch to the festivities. Divya Eapen, otherwise known for her rustic breads, offers green treats with a hard shell and gooey centre paired as charming gifts for more than just kids.
@ Rs 300 for a box of five. Details: 9840121023
Bacon-Onion Jam @ Choolaimedu
A perfect start to your Christmas morning or even your late night cravings—simply go ahead and slap some on your toast or pie. The salty hit of the bacon and the sweetness from the caramelised onions make an irresistible match. Another hit from Anu Prosper’s kitchen is her X’mas Bauble—a tempered hard chocolate shell ball filled to the brim with luscious sweet chocolate and caramel mousse. While there, do try her macaron—in eggnog and ginger-bread flavours. @ Rs 200 per 100 grams.
Traditional fruit cake @ Kottivakkam
One of the best cakes in town is by popular home-baker and culinary trainer, Sara Koshy. Her fruit cakes are moist and buttery with a heady aroma of alcohol. The plump and well-soaked fruit mixture is filled with raisins, currants, sultanas, cherries gently spiked with fruit peels, lemon juice and ginger. With the addition of homemade caramel, the cake hits the spot, does not crumble and keeps for up to six months. Also try her crispy and tasty nankhatai (cookies) laden with ghee and cardamom. @ Rsz1,300 per kilo. Details: 8124145884
Xmas cake truffles @ Nungambakkam
If you are one of those who find an entire fruit cake a bit much, the cake truffles of Minal Kripalani, of Jarcode Dips, will be your perfect choice. Similar to cake pops, Kripalani’s truffles are made with a traditional plum cake, and for drama, the pops are dipped in dark or white chocolate, and can be covered in sprinkles too.
@ Rs 300 onwards. Details: 9840722848