Eggless Orange Choco Muffins with Orange Shrikhand Frosting

Winter is here and as every season brings with them their own bounties, winter too is bountiful with its oranges, date palm jaggery and so on. The star fruit of winter season at least in India are the oranges or the lovely orange coloured tangy sweet citrus fruits. There are numerous varieties of citrus oranges available, however the mandarin oranges or the mandarins are very common across India, which are commonly referred to as oranges here.

Among all the mandarin oranges found here, the khasi mandarin which is quite common in the entire northeastern india is of supreme quality in taste, texture and aroma, which are again available in multiple variations and forms across the northeast India. The khasi mandarins are currently in the limelight for their taste, aroma, extra juiciness, richness in nutrients, extra anti-oxidant properties giving protection from flues & other infections and with numbers of other health benefits. They are gaining wide popularity worldwide and are in demand in the international market too.

The beautiful, sweet, juicy and aromatic mandarin oranges catches fancy of everyone right from a toddler to grandpas & grannies alike. We all love to have them by simply peeling off and gulping the juicy pulp. However many of us like to have the juice separated from the pulp. Occassionally, we like to add some extra sweeteners to the juice and enjoy. The fruit is so alluring, that chefs and food connoisseurs cannot wait to create fanciful dishes out of it, especially some delectable & aromatic desserts and confectioneries.

Being a foodie, I too could not withhold my tempt to create some confection out of it in the occasion of Christmas and hence ended up making these delightful baked beauties out of them. However, I have used this wonderful fruit in this dish in two ways, first is the usual way like using the ingredient in my muffin base for baking and the second is using it in the frosting. For a change, my frosting is not the usual whipped cream based, instead I tried to use our very Indian traditional Gujarati dessert shrikhand for the icing and that too infused with the flavour and aroma of these magnificent khasi mandarin oranges.

Wanna try this out??๐Ÿ™‚, follow the recipe below :๐Ÿ‘‡


Ingredients :

A) For Baking :

  1. Whole wheat flour (atta) – 1.5 cup.
  2. Baking powder – 1 tsp.
  3. Baking soda – 1 tsp.
  4. Corn flour – 1 tbsp.
  5. Cocoa powder – 1 tbsp.
  6. Salt – a pinch or two
  7. Granulated sugar – 1/2 cup.
  8. Refined oil or any neutral oil – 1/4th cup.
  9. Orange juice (freshly squezed) – 1 cup.
  10. Orange zest (freshly scraped) – 1 tbsp.
  11. Yogurt – 1/2 cup.
  12. Orange marmalade – 1 tbsp.
  13. Chopped almonds and tutti frutti – As per requirement.

B) For Frosting :

1. Hung curd – 200 g.

2. Orange Zest – 1/2 tsp.

3. Orange pulp – 1/2 cup.

4. Powdered sugar – 1/2 cup or as per taste.

Preparation :

  1. In a mixing bowl, sift all the dry ingredients (wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, corn flour, salt & cocoa powder). Sift 2-3 times to mix them homogenously and keep aside.
  2. In another mixing bowl take the sugar, add some of the orange zest and mix them together. Rubbing them together will give a stronger flavour of orange.
  3. Add oil and mix them together using a wire whisk or electric blender till the sugar melts completely giving a light, slightly frothy mixture.
  4. Add orange juice and orange marmalade, and mix them nicely.
  5. Add yogurt and the remaining orange zest, and mix them thoroughly to get a smooth consistency.
  6. Pre-heat your pressure cooker by removing the whistle and gasket and filling 1/3rd of it by salt for making a salt bed.
  7. Put a wire-stand over the salt bed and then place a tray or separator over it for putting the muffin moulds over it, cover the cooker with the lid and heat for 5 minutes over a medium flame.
  8. Now, add the mixture of dry ingredients in batches to the wet ingredients mixture and mix gently so that no lumps are formed. (Note : Do not over mix as it may turn your muffins chewy and heavy. So, avoid stirring, mix them just by folding the batter till the dry mix incorporates fully into the wet mix. You may use a wire whisk halfway and then change to spatula for the final mixing.)
  9. Add the tutti-frutti & the chopped almonds and mix.
  10. Your batter is now ready. Pour them in the greased cup cake moulds or in the muffin liners and then place them into the moulds.
  11. Open the lid & put the filled moulds inside the pre-heated pressure cooker and close the lid.
  12. Bake for 25-30 minutes over a medium flame.
  13. Open the lid, check by inserting a toothpick. If the toothpick comes out clean, your muffins are done. If not, then bake for another 5 to 10 minutes and switch off the flame.
  14. Open the lid and take out the muffins to let them cool down completely before frosting or else your frosting will melt.
  15. Your soft, spongy muffins are now ready to be served. Either have them fresh or wait for the frosting for enjoying it to the fullest.
  16. For making the orange shrikhand for frosting, take the yogurt in a bowl, add orange zest and orange pulp to it and mix them thoroughly.
  17. Now take all the yogurt mixture in a muslin cloth, tie a knot tightly and hang the curd overnight to drain out the water completely. (Note : Prepare your shrikhand in advance to get it ready when your muffins are done.)
  18. Take out the hung curd or shrikhand in a mixing bowl, add powdered sugar and mix using a wire whisk to form a creamy mixture.
  19. Top your muffins with a dollop of orange shrikhand and drizzles of marmalade. Serve fresh for enjoying the refreshing flavour of natural orange. (Note : Do the frosting only before serving as the shrikhand should be stored in the refrigerator otherwise.)

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