I remember many a major fuss in my mom`s kitchen over some ingredients during winter time.

She insisted on using particular spices and ingredients like nutmeg, cloves, ginger, honey, cinnamon, mace powder and so on .She would say they were her winter warmers.

Little did I understand then but it became quite clear in the following years. For instance, ginger juice with honey to cure throat aches and to ward away unwanted cold or cinnamon, carom seeds and nutmeg tea to give you an extra dose of much needed warmth during the chilly winter days.

On this Foodie Trail, let me share a few winter recipes that will not only satisfy your sweet tooth but also ward off the cold.

Jaggery squares

Jaggery - 250 gm

Carom seed - 2 tsp

Clarified butter - 2 tbsp

Pinch of salt

Mixed nuts( pistachios, almonds and cashew)

In a pan, heat the oil, break jaggery pieces in it and simmer on medium heat.

When it melts, add salt and carom seeds. Mix well.

Remove from fire, pour in a semi-deep steel dish.

Sprinkle the nuts and let it cool to room temperature.

Gently cut square pieces and store in an airtight jar.

Enjoy this healthy sweet treat after meals.

Salted caramel cake pudding

For cake

Eggs - 3

Sugar - 1 cup

Flour - 1 cup

Butter - 1 cup

Baking soda- 2 tsp

Chocolate powder - 1/2 cup

Walnuts - 4 tbsp

Raisins 2 tsp

For sauce

Custard powder - 1 tbsp

Milk - 1 cup

Sugar - 3 tbsp

Brandy - 2 tbsp

Sugar 2 tbsp for caramelizing

To bake the cake

Separate egg white and yolks in a pan. Whisk egg whites till soft peaks are formed.

Add sugar and whisk again. Add butter, egg yolks and baking powder and whisk till completely mixed.

Add chocolate powder and flour and blend well. Stir in nuts and raisins.

Empty the contents in a well-greased baking dish. Bake at 170 degree Celsius on low heat for 30 minutes.

When cake is risen, heat from top for five minutes.

Remove after checking if the fork comes clean once pierced in the cake.

Remove from the oven and let it cool.

For sauce

In a pan, put sugar on medium heat. Cook till it's caramelized to dark brown colour.

In a pan, heat milk and add pre-dissolved custard powder in cold milk and sugar.

Stir till the mixture thickens. Remove from heat and add the caramelized sugar immediately.

Pour over the cake in a serving dish and serve warm.

(Monish Gujral, owner of the Moti Mahal chain, is a restaurateur, chef and food writer.)

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