Food Writer Fridays – Anuradha from Baker Street

Bakerstreet.tv a baking blogIf you spend any time on food blogs at all, you’ve seen the very popular Muffin Monday started by Anuradha from Baker Street.  I’ve wanted to join in but my schedule is so wacky that I’m always afraid of letting people down.  I bake vicariously through them though.  Some of the muffins have been amazingly gorgeous and some of the combinations have made me scratch my head – but every one was a winner.

I’ve been friends with Anuradha for quite a while.  We met on Twitter and began following each other’s blogs and as the weeks and months went by we got to know each other better and better.  She’s such a friendly, giving person.  I was quite under the weather for ages and I mentioned I was having trouble just standing up, much less cooking anything or blogging about it.  Within what seemed minutes she’d done a guest post for me with the most delicious cupcakes.

Vanilla-Almond Cupcakes with Maple Frosting by Bakerstreet.tvI was gobsmacked that anyone would want to do a guest post for me.  She assured me that it was common and I should do it more often.  I’m always reluctant to ask busy people to spend their time on me but Anuradha didn’t wait to be asked.  She’s a lovely person.  She’s the sort of person you’d love to have living next door to you.  She’s not in your face but you know she’s there whenever you need a hand or a chat or advice.

You’ll find baked goods of all varieties on her blog so I asked how she learned to be a fantastic baker.  Baking is a talent she was born with – a calling, she said.  Despite having no formal culinary training, she produces the most wonderful food.  She started her blog as a way to share her recipes and soon found she was making friends from around the world.

Nutella Peanut Butter Chocolate Brownies by bakerstreet.tv

Trio of Sin – Nutella Peanut Butter Chocolate Brownies

An lives in India but a quick peek on her blog and she could be in Manhattan or Sydney or London.  Baker Street is world wide blog.  She loves creating her blog and like many of us finds the baking, photography and blogging to be a real stress buster.  She told me that if I’m getting stressed or pressured about posting deadlines, I’m doing it wrong.  “It defeats the purpose,” she said.  That’s so right.  Too often I find that I *must* post on this day or that day and if I don’t I’m doing it wrong.  In blogging there’s very little wrong unless you don’t post at all.

When asked what part of the process to create Baker Street did she love the best, it’s definitely the baking.  Her baking isn’t always sweet as you’ll find quite a few savory delicacies on her blog — even muffins.

If I told her I was taking away her spices and allowing her to keep just three they’d be cinnamon, black pepper and nutmeg.  Those three are definitely from a baker.

Anuradha believes it’s essential to find your niche when creating a new blog.  “Find out what you’re good at and chase that — at no point should you stop learning,” she told me.

Cinnamon Hazelnut Shortbread by bakerstreet.tv

Cinnamon Hazelnut Shortbread

She didn’t grow up in a family of bakers, in fact nobody in her family baked at all.  She has no childhood memories of waiting in the kitchen for something tasty and sweet to come out of the oven, no memories of the aroma of cinnamon or hands covered in chocolate while sous cheffing for her mother.  She didn’t even get to lick the bowl.  She’s had a lot of making-up to do and she done it SO well.  An’s a neat baker and her kitchen is as clean when she finishes as when she starts because she washes every item before moving on to the next.  “I can’t function in a messy kitchen.”

Anuradha lived with her grandmother for a couple of years when she was 6 and her gran felt compelled to keep her happy and distracted with food. She took the effort to read recipe magazines to figure what she could bake for her in her ancient, makeshift oven.

And after some failed experiments, the only item she found she could accomplish was a simple vanilla pound cake. Even this took a few tries. But once it was edible and she got the hang of baking it without the recipe at hand, she baked the same cake twice a week as a treat when I got back from school. The same cake. Twice a week. Week after week. And I loved it. Every time. She used to coordinate it in a manner that I had a slice in hand almost as soon as it was out of the oven.

The world comes to a standstill when you bite into a slice of warm cake out of the oven. An inexplicable feel it is. In all likelihood, my quest for the perfect pound cake recipe comes from this memory.  This takes me back to being 6, when the biggest worry I had was finishing homework. I really wish I had her recipe to share with you today. I’m still chasing it but in the meantime, this one comes quite close…

The love of a grandmother for her grand babies is wonderful, isn’t it?  Anuradha is sharing with us her Cookies and Cream Pound Cake. A simple cake that reminds her of simpler times.  She really recommends that you try this when its right out of the oven and you’ll get an inkling of the magic.

To honor her grandmother, here’s Anuradha’s recipe for Cookies and Cream Pound Cake.

Cookies and Cream Pound Cake by bakerstreet.tv

Cookies and Cream Pound Cake

5.0 from 8 reviews
Cookies and Cream Pound Cake
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Simple pound cake which can bring back memories of simpler times.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 16
Ingredients
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup half n’ half (light cream)
  • 2 cups oreo-type sandwich cookies, very coarsely chopped (about 20)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour a 10-inch bundt pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light. Beat in eggs one at a time, followed by vanilla extract.
  4. With a mixer on low speed (or by hand), stir in ⅓ of the flour mixture, followed by half of the half n’ half. Add additional ½ of the flour and the rest of the half n’ half. Stir in remaining flour, mixing only until no streaks of flour remain. Gently fold in crushed Oreo cookies with a spatula.
  5. Spoon into prepared pan and level top with a spatula.
  6. Bake for about 70 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  7. Cool in pan for 5 minutes, then loosen cake and turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely before slicing or glazing.

 

Check out Anuradha’s blog at Bakerstreet and you can follow her on Facebook and Twitter too.  I certainly do.  She’s a woman to watch.

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Comments

  1. says

    It was wonderful to find out more about you Anuradha! I have always loved your blog with its many tasty creations and muffin Monday is a genius idea :)
    I cannot believe baking is not in your family my friend because it definitely runs in your blood ;)
    Thank you Maureen for interviewing such a fabulous blogger!

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru
    Choc Chip Uru recently posted..Third Time Lucky For Mother’s Day 2012

  2. says

    Another wonderful interview! I enjoyed learning more about Anuradha, and her recipe for Cookies & Cream Poundcake is wonderful. Thanks for another great post.

  3. says

    What a wonderful feature on a favorite blog of mine! It was a real joy to learn a little more about the blogger behind the blog. This pound cake truly does look magical. :)

  4. says

    What a lovely post and such a compliment to Anuradha…I tried keeping up with weekly blog hops here and there but like you worried I would let people down between illnesses, kids, commitments etc I didn’t want to be a slacker and I like to comment on every single blog that participates….lot’s of work but so much fun. I have missed doing that and need to get back to it. I have never participated in muffin monday but read it and have often thought I would enjoy it…you have given me the motivation to move that up on the list of to do’s with such a nice post on Bakerstreet!

    • says

      Lorraine you were sorely missed at Noosa! I had a lovely chat with Stephanie Alexander that was the highlight of my afternoon. I can’t wait to get her new autobiography. Then there was Mark Best, Ben Shewry, Justin North and Jacques Reymond – all winners in my book. An Internation Food Trends panel discussion with Davide Scabin, Ben Shewry, Mark Best, David Thompson, Alvin Leung, Pat Nourse & Fergus Henderson was really good. I could do it all again. :)

  5. says

    I adore Anu, she makes the most amazing and gorgeous cakes!!! I made her chocolate chip cake, and it was amazing:-) Thank you for sharing! Hugs, Terra

  6. says

    I love anuradha’s blog. She does create some wonderful dishes and her photography is outstanding! I am so happy to see her being interviewed on your blog today. Lovely post!

  7. says

    I joined An a couple of times bakng last year but yeah every Monday was a little too much for me and I couldn’t keep up with their energy. Muffin Monday bakers are amazing and are always up to their toes phew… haha.
    You are lucky to have her guest post. I too am kinda shy asking peeps around but hey it worked for you, maybe it will for me too heheh.. hint hint.. haha
    i hope you feel better Maureen. Take it easy and get well!
    malou

  8. says

    What a great introduction to Baker Street. It’s amazing that she lives in India yet the title of her blog and what she’s cooking would make you believe she’s in a part of the Western world. That’s a beautiful pound cake that she made as a tribute to her grandmother and I love the decadent brownies xx

  9. says

    Anuradha is such an outgoing person! I loved this cake and this looks fabulous as well. Anuradha is super talented…I love both of your blogs !! Both of you rock!!

  10. says

    Here it is 7:30 a.m. and my planned for healthy breakfast to start off my week ahs been blown all to hades!! Instead of fruit and toast I just have to have cakes and shortbreeads. Thanks Maureen!!!!

    Aside: I love you for it too!

  11. says

    Going right over there, all you had to do is say cake to me. He He, hope you are having a great week so far my dear.
    -Gina-

  12. says

    I always wondered who the person behind baker street was, till I figured out that the talented lady is from india. Seriously never thought of that! Respect Anuradha, u didnt have a hotel management education, but I ll tell you your baking results look incredible! Anuradha, u rock girl!

  13. says

    Whenever I have a hankering for baked goods, Anuradha’s blog is one of the blogs I zoom to, even if only to gawk at food porn to bake later. Her muffin creations are out of thos world – hence why I call her the muffin queen, not to mention all of her other stomach rumbling creations. It was great to learn more about you, Anuradha!

  14. says

    Anuradha has an awesome talent that I do not have… baking. I learn so much from her and she fills in my craving for delicious baked goods whenever I visit her blog.

    This is my favorite series and as always it’s fun learning about the foodies!

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