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    A dessert map of what’s new around town as the New Year unfolds

    Sugar, come hither. Or so was probably what the head baker had in mind when he set about creating beauties like these, some of which have origin stories that date as far back as the 1500s. Here’s a run-down of popular cafés and their newest offerings — most of which are ironically steeped in centuries-old tradition.

    Crispy cream
    The last time we got excited about Scones and Clotted cream was thanks to Enid Blyton. Oh so long ago. But as of this weekend, the classic English high tea favourite won’t be restricted to fictitious pages on your bookshelf. Crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside, the Old Madras Baking Company is introducing a plain, Blueberry and Bacon and Cheese choices. Devour with a copy of The Famous Five for company.
    Old Madras Baking Company | Rs 40 – Rs 60. Details: 42084422

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    Jamun in a jar?
    Here’s a curious combination. Gulab jamun meets cheesecake for a desi-inspired fusion dessert at Lloyd’s Tea House. This no-bake dessert weaves in a frenzy of flavours with an assortment of layers — an Oreo cookie crust, almond flakes for crunch, generous jamun bites and white chocolate blended into the cream cheese.
    Don’t worry about sticky fingers with your kids. This one comes in a jar.
    Lloyd’s Tea House | Rs 150.
    Details: 45524231

    Strawberry sweep
    Back in the 1930s, an English college served this treat at the school’s little ‘tuck shop’. The decadent dessert of strawberries, broken meringue and whipped cream became a popular seller that went by the name Eton Mess, since it was created in Eton College.
    Now making its debut at The English Tearoom in Alwarpet, it’s clear this traditional recipe has travelled a long way from home.
    The English Tearoom | Rs 190. Details: 24996499

    Gift of the Magi
    Christmas may be over. But today, believe it or not, is the date believed to when the three kings visited the babe in the manger. A 300-year old tradition dictates that a King’s cake (also called a Galette) be served on the day. There are several variations around the world, but you can get the original French-style puffed pastry variety with almond dough right here in Chennai at the Tryst Cafe. Baked on request with a chocolate gold coin inside, to get little ones on a treasure hunt. Available till January 31.
    Tryst Cafe | Rs 150 per portion. Details: 64575575

    The Lightning Cake
    From 2-minute noodles to 12-minute cakes. The latter is bound to have any conservative baker flummoxed. And the good folks at Zuka have christened their latest offering with the perfect name:
    The Lightning Cake. Baked from scratch in 12 minutes flat, this is available in a broad range of flavours that include Coffee Mist, Snow White and Eggless Chocolate Truffle — you can be assured that there’s nothing basic about the recipe either. At 600 gm, the cake serves six to eight people. Order on the spot, and expect a 25 per cent discount if the delivery time
    crosses the 12-minute mark.Zuka | Rs 500 to Rs 1,000. Details: 42061404

    By Sonali Shenoy

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