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Love desserts? Mumbai chef Paul Noronha suggests making Serradura this Christmas

Updated on: 16 December,2022 11:28 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Nascimento Pinto |

In the second part of the series, Mid-day Online spoke to Mumbai chef Paul Noronha as he goes down memory lane and shares his celebratory dish

Love desserts? Mumbai chef Paul Noronha suggests making Serradura this Christmas

Chef Paul Noronha looks forward to Christmas lunch every year with his family as it is a huge feast but along with that he also enjoys Serradura for dessert, his celebratory dish for the day. Photo Courtesy: ITC Grand Central/Istock

For Mumbai chef Paul Noronha, Christmas meant visiting his relatives in Goa when he was growing up. “I still remember the excitement of boarding that Paulo bus from Mumbai, knowing that I would be seeing all of my cousins in Goa,” shares an excited Noronha, who hails from Dadar. Like many other Mumbaikars and members of the Catholic community around India, Christmas begins long before December 25. In fact, at this very moment, many are busy mixing their cakes, making sweets and wine too for the big day.  

Playing Christmas Carols to decorating the home while listening to them is an important part of the festive season, and like many others, the Mumbaikar says it is all part of getting ready for the big day. However, what gets him most excited is the food and especially the Christmas lunch on the day. “There’s almost always a whole roasted poultry (either chicken or turkey), served with greens like asparagus. We also make sorpotel, a traditional Indian pork curry that's eaten along with sannas which are spongy steamed rice cakes.” While Noronha loves the main course, he yearningly looks forward to dessert too, which is usually a serving of Serradura. “I’ve made it a point to carry on this tradition till today. My wife and kids love this tradition and often join me in preparing this grand feast,” he adds. 

It is clear that preparing the food and decorating his house with family is also one aspect he totally looks forward to every Christmas. “Over the past decade, I have been posted away from them. So, Christmas is the one time when I’m with the entire family, and frankly, there’s no better feeling than that. Whether it’s watching a Christmas movie with my wife or setting up the Christmas tree with my kids, the entire time that I am with my family during the festival is my favourite time of the year.” It is one fact that he has realised is undeniable over the years and that having a memorable Christmas only requires two ingredients – some good food and the company of your loved ones. 

With so much food on the table, what does he consider to be that one dish that is his favourite and celebratory at the same time? Noronha, who is the executive chef at ITC Grand Central in Parel, says, “It is definitely the Serradura. It is a Portuguese-Goan dessert and without a doubt the easiest and best last course ever!” Taking the no-fuss route, the Mumbaikar adds, “It is made by layering crushed Marie biscuits with sweetened whipping cream. It has only three ingredients and is elegant enough for entertaining.” 

Also Read: Keto bacon bomb? Mumbai musician Sahil Makhija shares his celebratory recipe for Christmas 2022

Recipe for Serradura by chef Paul Noronha (Servings - 4 dessert glasses) 

Marie biscuits 24 nos 
Heavy whipping cream 3/4 cup 
Sweetened, condensed milk 1/4 cup 
Vanilla extract 1 tsp  

1. Break each biscuit into 3-4 pieces. Put them in the food processor/grinder to make a fine powder. Set the powder aside. 
2. Add the whipping cream to a large bowl. Start whipping the cream on a low speed and gradually take it to the highest speed. Whip the cream for 4-5 minutes until you see soft peaks. 
3. Add the condensed milk and vanilla extract. Once again, whip the cream with the condescended milk and vanilla extract until you see stiff peaks. It will take another 5-6 minutes of whipping if using an electric whisk. 
4. To assemble the pudding, take a few small glasses. Begin with a layer of crushed biscuits, and then top it with a layer of whipped cream. Make similar alternating layers to fill the glass to the top. 
5. Ensure you finish the topping with some crushed biscuits. Garnish in any way you fancy. Refrigerate the glasses for 3-4 hours before serving. They are best consumed on the same day. 

Also Read: Tradition and treats: Mumbai kickstarts Christmas festivities with cake-mixing

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