A Friday Night Dinner

This post is a little unconventional…I just took pictures of things that my parents made, which I supervised. Hehe chef varun + sous chefs veena and raj + lackey arjun. Mom made the desert first since it needed to cool down, then dad and I prepped the fish while mom prepped the chicken and we baked the two together. It was awesome.

the fish

Dad picked up 5 filets of tilapia fish from Whole Foods, and was thinking about making parchment paper fish with lemons. I told him that it works very well with halibut, but tilapia cooks extremely fast…and I wanted something sweet and spicy. He did some googling and we eventually landed on a quick and simple recipe.

For 5-6 filets (rinsed in cold water and patted semi-dry), just mix 1 c (minus 1 Tbs) of brown sugar, 1 tsp cayenne pepper, 1 tsp cumin, 2 pinches of salt and 2 pinches of garlic powder. Coat filets with it, put into a buttered dish (greased, to be precise) and bake at 375º F for 12-15 minutes or until it falls apart easily when a fork tries to pry a filet apart (should be white inside).

fish dry rub mix
recipe, hehe
rinsed and drying tilapia filets
rubbing the filets
rubbing the filets
in the dish
in the dish
nom nom time
nom nom time
nom nom time

the chicken

Chicken is so awesome. My mom saw Tyler Florence cook this recipe on tv while she was at the gym and decided to make it. It turned out very good, but she should have let the crust sit on the chicken for 40 minutes before she baked it so the crust stayed on tighter. We also didn’t have enough panko, so we mixed whatever we had left with some crushed crackers.

the chicken

the cake

This cake was pretty rockstar. If you remember the brand of cake flour I used for the angel food cake, on the back of the box was a recipe for ‘Moist Chocolate Cake’. *We made 1/2 the recommended recipe because we wanted to see how it would turn out…and we wanted a thinner cake since we were doing an upside-down twist. Below are the measurements we used (aside from the upsidedown-ness, you could double all the measurements for a normal chocolate cake):

oven preheat to 350° F
9″ spring-form pan
brown sugar
we greased the bottom of the pan with butter, added brown sugar and pecans to cover bottom and stuck in over until brown & crispy (~10 minutes) for the top of the upsidedown cake
1 c unbleached cake flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
3/8 c unsweetened cocoa powder
7/8 c sugar
Sift all the dry ingredients into a mixing bowl to avoid lumps.
1/4 c unsalted butter, soft
1/6 c vegetable oil
The box recommends using a stand mixer to combine the dry ingredients with the softened butter while drizzling in the oil until the mixture looks like sand. My mom doesn’t have patience, so she melted the butter and just used a whisk. With cakes, I tend to follow recipes to the ‘T’ since light/fluffy/moist is something I don’t tend to screw around with.
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 c milk
1/4 c cooled coffee
assorted spices
Add these into the mix all at once and mix for 1 minute at low speed, scrape the sides down and mix again for 30 seconds (~2 minutes whisking with a few side scrapes?). We added some cinnamon (next time I would consider mace, cloves, candied ginger or nutmeg).
2 eggs Add the eggs and mix at medium-high speed between each egg (~2/3 minutes whisking). The batter will thin out..
canned pears
chocolate chips (I recommend 60% cocoa)
unsweetened chocolate bar
Taking the cooled pan, we laid out some sliced, canned pears some chocolate chips and I used a microplane to grate the dark chocolate bar on top — few Tbs of shavings.
- Slowly pour the mixture evenly around the pan. After it is all in, jiggle it a few times to spread out the mixture and pop into preheated oven for 28-30 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean from center.
plate After allowing cake to cool (at least 1 hour!), release the spring sides and put serving plate on top. Carefully hold with both hands and flip the cake. Use a long, thin spatula (frosting or crêpe works well) and slowly and carefully cut the bottom of the pan off the top (the pecans will try to stick, so be careful)
apple cider We found the cake a little dry, so we soaked it with apple cider

baked cake
turned upside down, it was a tad dry
soaking with apple cider
soaking with apple cider


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