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On my second day of preparation I worked on the Maharani Cupcakes and the Raita.

The cupcakes involved two different toppings so I began with those. For the sweet-basil cream/icing I heated up (but NOT simmering/boiling) 1.5 cups of heavy whipping cream and turned off the heat. I then put a sprig of fresh basil in it and let it seep for an hour.

While it was seeping I worked on the lemon-curry curd. First I whisked together 1 cup sugar, 2 eggs and 1 tbsp of curry powder in a large microwavable bowl. I then assaulted three lemons – brutally stripping them of their rinds and juices and using the carcasses to freshen my disposal. I added all the zest and juice to my sugar mixture and thoroughly incorporated them. Then I popped the curry-concoction into the microwave and heated for one minute, took it out and stirred and repeated this until it was thick and could coat the back of the spoon/felt like pudding. Once that was done I strained it through a sieve and popped it into the fridge to chill for 3+ hours (I kept it in overnight).

After the basil cream was done steeping for an hour I took out the basil, strained it through a sieve and put it into the fridge to chill with its homey, the curry-lemon curd.

For the cupcakes I started with a box of white cake mix and threw that in a bowl with 1 cup flaked sweetened coconut, 1.25 cups water, 3 eggs, 1/3 cup veggie oil, and 2 tbsps of coconut extract. I mixed all this up into the most delicious coconut batter in existence. Then I poured the batter into 24 cup-lined cupcake molds and put in my oven at 350 ºF and baked for 20 minutes.  Once they cooled they were SO FLUFFY!

The final step for the basil cream was to whip it with a ton of confectioners sugar (3 cups to be exact) in a chilled bowl until it begins to hold it’s shape.  In a separate bowl I mixed up half a block of room temp cream cheese and 3 more cups of confectioners sugar.  Once this was smooth I gently mixed the basil cream/sugar into the cream cheese/sugar and voila, tasty basil-icing!

To create the Maharani cupcakes I topped a cupcake with the lemon-curry curd, topped that with the basil-icing and then sprinkled on colorfulness.  I took a bite.  CURRY.  I do not recommend these.  The cupcakes themselves are marvelous, the cupcakes topped with basil-icing are marvelous….once you add the lemon-curry curd they get over-powering.  Maybe if they were baby cupcakes?  Just not my style.

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The last thing I did that night was to make the Raita.  MMmmmm.  This was easy and oh so rewarding!  I finely chopped up:

– 3 de-seeded cucumbers

– 3 garlic cloves

– 2 slices of a small onion

and mixed them up with 1 cup of light yogurt and one cup of light sour cream.  I added 1 tsp of cumin, 1/2 tsp of paprika, stirred and chilled.  MMM!

That ends the prep work for our Indian Spectacular!

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