Three drool-worthy French desserts to try

Baked Alaska


5 egg whites

1 readymade cake

1/4 cup sugar

1 tsp brandy

500 g vanilla ice-cream

1/2 tsp vanilla essence

2 tbsp orange juice


Line a bowl with cling film, put vanilla ice-cream in it and set in the refrigerator.

Then halve the cake and place one half on a serving plate.

Cut the remaining half into arcs and place around the piece on the plate.

To prepare the meringue, beat the egg whites in a processor.

Then add vanilla essence and sugar in the blender, and continue to process till the egg whites are stiff and form peaks.

Moisten the cake with a little orange juice.

Upturn the ice-cream over the centre of the cake in the plate leaving the edges.

Pour the meringue over the entire cake. Keep it in the refrigerator for five to 10 minutes.

You can bake it in the oven at high temperature till the meringue turns light golden or you can brown it with a brûlée torch.

Pour brandy into a heated steel ladle and heat it again till it catches flame.

Pour it immediately over the baked Alaska and serve immediately once the flame settles.


Roger Federer says he will probably rest until French Open

Roger Federer said he was confident he could continue to produce top tennis as long as his body co-operated. Roger Federer said he was confident he could continue to produce top tennis as long as his body co-operated.

Miami Open winner Roger Federer said on Sunday he will probably skip the upcoming European clay court season except for the French Open.

Federer, 35, wants to give his body a chance to recover over the next two months before the three grand slam championships that come in quick succession.

“I want to stay healthy because when I’m healthy and feeling good I can produce tennis like this,” the 18-times grand slam champion said in a courtside interview after defeating Rafa Nadal.

“I’m not 24 anymore so things have to change in a big way and I probably won’t play any clay court events except the French. I need a rest, my body needs healing. I need time to prepare.”

There are four big ATP clay events before the French Open starts in May — in Monte Carlo, Madrid, Barcelona and Rome.

Federer, who missed the second half of last year recovering from knee surgery, has made a rousing return to the court in 2017, winning three of the four tournaments he has contested, including the Australian Open.

Though no pushover on clay, it is not his best surface.

Of his grand slam titles, 10 have come on hardcourt (five Australian Opens and five U.S. Opens), seven on grass at Wimbledon and just one on clay, the 2009 French Open.

Federer said he was confident he could continue to produce top tennis as long as his body co-operated.

“When I’m healthy and I’m feeling good, I can produce tennis like this. If I’m not feeling this good there’s no chance I would be in the final competing with Rafa.

“That’s why this break coming into clay court season and focusing everything on the French, the grass (Wimbledon) and then the hardcourts (U.S. Open) is going to be the key to me.”

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Masters at work: When inspiration struck in the form of a sandwich

Inside the Big Fat Sandwich. Inside the Big Fat Sandwich.

Inspiration struck in the form of a sandwich as Siddharth Manchanda and Anant Kataria strolled the quirky-yet-cosy streets of Amsterdam nearly seven years ago. The two began dreaming of starting their own casual dining restaurant with the cult favourite as its pièce de résistance.

They first tested waters a year-and-a-half ago by setting up a surreptitious al fresco diner in the alley between Ambience and Promenade Mall in Vasant Kunj and called it the Big Fat Sandwich (BFS). As praise poured in, in footfalls, they took the plunge and another BFS cropped up at the popular SelectCity Walk.

While Manchanda and Kataria had sandwich-making in their clench, beverages and desserts were beyond their ken. So, they reached out to Matt Chitharanjan of Blue Tokai, and Bani Nanda of Miam Patisserie, two of the best in the business. The three frontliners, together, have pulled a bit of a gastronomic coup by coming under the Big Fat Sandwich’s roof.

“Going to Bani was a no-brainer. We had been ordering from her since she opened her catering business last year. It took a little bit of convincing, but we’re so glad she agreed to come on board. As for coffee, we used to go to Blue Tokai everyday and absolutely loved their coffee. So, we asked them to join us. They refused to collaborate with us if we continued to function in the mall,” says Manchanda.

The idea of finding a space away from the centre of the city appealed to Manchanda and Kataria who found a snug place in Hauz Khas Market, which is going through a makeover, with new restaurants popping up. Though the market does not ensure as many customers, as most of them are from the hood, the owners seem to be clear about the kind of clientele they wish to attract.

“The mall culture does not fit in our vision. Both BFS and Blue Tokai source their ingredients from local producers and we’re all about making great food and good coffee more accessible. Malls don’t allow that to happen,” says Chitharanjan.

The minimalist, modern decor gives a sense that they aren’t trying too hard until you get to the menu. It is exhaustive. From the breakfast menu to an array of French desserts. When encountered for the first time, the options require your complete and undivided attention. You are spoiled for choice. With the help of Manchanda, a respectable order of Nitro Coffee, Truffle infused Mac ‘n’ Cheese and the Philly Loving was placed.

The Nitro coffee packed the anticipated caffeine punch but lost points on the texture. It was not as foamy as one would have liked it to be. The Truffle infused Mac ’n’ Cheese Croquettes were crunchy on the outside, gooey on the inside. You want to consume this soon after it has been presented to you.

It’s no good when cold. Manchanda’s suggestion, Philly Loving, was the star of the evening. A warm, soft French loaf arrived stuffed with sautéed mushrooms, caramelised onions, cheddar and slow cooked baby lamb which had been marinating in its juices for more than 48 hours. Mint mayo played the ideal sidekick.

Soon after, Le Cordon Bleu alumna Nanda walked towards us, holding up a pink box. Her gait was a gentle reminiscent of the French waiter caricature. She brought us macaroons and a tart. The temperamental cookies, which she makes using the French method, were as pleasing to the taste buds as to the eyes.

Where Nanda truly wins you over is with her panache for converging varying textures on the same platter. The tart was an assemblage of orange mousse, orange curd and lime custard on a kafir lime cookie base — a refreshingly unusual dessert for a Delhi restaurant.

“I like to give multiple textures to my desserts because it’s the best way for me to express my flavour pairings. Everything can fit in one bite and it also poses a fun challenge for me as a chef,”said Nanda. Her only complaint — everyone wants to eat something with chocolate.

Meal for two: Rs 1,500

Address: A-15A Front, Hauz Khas, Delhi

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French League to look into Paris St Germain fans’ behaviour after Cup final

PSG won the game 4-1 to clinch their fourth successive League Cup title. (Source: Reuters) PSG won the game 4-1 to clinch their fourth successive League Cup title. (Source: Reuters)

Paris St Germain could face sanctions after the French League (LFP) said that its disciplinary commission would study damage caused by their fans at Saturday’s League Cup final against Monaco in Lyon.

Pictures of the Parc OL stadium showed that seats had been ripped up and the LFP blamed the PSG supporters.

“The LFP firmly condemns the behaviour of a section of the PSG fans at Parc OL,” the LFP said in a statement on Sunday.

PSG won the game 4-1 to clinch their fourth successive League Cup title.

“As soon as next Thursday, the LFP’s disciplicary commission will look into the case,” the statement added.

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