Monday, 30 March 2015

Garlic Bread

Rich , buttery garlic loaf made with baguettes. Herbed garlic butter spread on baguette slices and baked quickly for 10 minutes. Best served as a side / appetizer with a bowl of soup.
 
 

 
 

Ingredients

  • 1 French baguette
  • 4 Tablespoons of salted butter at room temperature
  • 6 Garlic cloves
  • 1/4 Cup tightly packed cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli flakes
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Italian seasoning ( mixture of dried oregano + thyme + rosemary+ basil)
  • salt to taste

Directions

1. In a food processor, add peeled garlic cloves and cilantro leaves and pulse it couple of times until the mixture is smooth paste
 

2. In a small bowl, add softened butter. Then add ground garlic cilantro paste to the butter
3. Add red chilli flakes and Italian seasoning and stir in. Season with salt if required





4. Using a sharp knife slice the bread into thick slices


5. Apply herbed garlic butter on both sides of the bread slices
6. Preheat the oven to 200C. Grease a baking tray and arrange the bread slices on the try and bake at 200 C for 10 minutes or until they are crispy and golden


7. Serve hot
 

Chocolate Chip Muffins

These are moist, delicious and perfect for breakfast / snack with a cup of chilled milk.
 
 
 
Yield : 10 muffins

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups All purpose flour
  • 2 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/3 Cup granulated white sugar
  • 1/3 Cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 Teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 Cup melted unsalted butter
  • 2 Large eggs at room temperature
  • 2/3 Cup Milk ( I used full cream milk)
  • 1 and 1/2 Teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 and 1/2 Cups milk chocolate chips

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 180 C. Grease a muffin pan or line a muffin pan with paper liners and set aside
2. In a large mixing bowl, add all purpose flour, granulated white sugar, brown sugar, salt, baking powder and whisk. Set aside
3. In a separate mixing bowl, add eggs, milk, melted butter, vanilla extract and whisk gently until everything is mixed together
4. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour the wet ingredients in the well. Mix / stir until everything is just combined
5. Fold in chocolate chips. Fill the muffin pan up to three fouths full. Bake at 180 C for 20 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean
6. Remove muffins from the pan after 5 minutes and then cool on a wire rack
7. Serve warm with a cup of chilled milk

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Raw mango and pineapple relish / chutney

Sweet, tangy , spicy and chunky raw mango and Pineapple relish with ginger. I served this as a dip with Jamaican chicken drumsticks. You can  serve this relish as a dip with appetizers or as a side with flavoured rice. Spread it on brown bread or just eat it as such, its delicious !
 
 
Yield : 1 and 1/2 cups of relish

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Raw Mango chopped into small pieces / cubes
  • 3 Pineapple slices chopped finely - about 1/2 cup ( I used canned pineapple slices in syrup. You can use fresh pineapple)
  • a big pinch of salt
  • a pinch of turmeric powder
  • 1/3 Cup Jaggery ( Use brown sugar or granulated white sugar if you don't have jaggery. I had tried raw mango relish with granulated sugar and it tastes equally good)

For the tempering

  • 1 Teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1/4 Teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1/2 Teaspoon urad dal
  • One sprig of curry leaf
  • 1/2 Teaspoon finely chopped ginger
  • a big pinch of hing / asafoetida
  • 2 Green chillies chopped finely

Directions

1. In a large pot add raw mango along with a pinch of salt and a pinch turmeric powder. Add 1/3 cup of water and cook for 10 minutes until the raw mangoes are soft
2. Using the back of the ladle , mash the mango
3. In a separate pot, add jaggery and 1/4 cup water and cook on low flame for 5 minutes until the jaggery melts. Filter the jaggery syrup to remove any impurities
4. Add this jaggery syrup to the cooked mango. Add chopped pineapple along with 1/4 cup of pineapple juice
5. Cook on low flame for 5 minutes until the pachadi reaches the required consistency
6. In a small wok/ frying pan, heat 1 teaspoon oil. When the oil is hot, add mustard seeds. when they splutter, add urad dal and fry until they are light golden
7. Then add curry leaves and fry until they are crispy
8. Add chopped green chillies and ginger and fry for 30 seconds
9. Finally add hing and switch off the flame. Add this tempering to the mango pachadi and give it a nice stir
10. Store in air tight container and refrigerate

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Fried coconut rice with veggies

Jazz up vegetable fried rice with coconut milk. Long grain / basmati Rice cooked with coconut milk and then mixed with fried veggies in Schezwan sauce. This fried rice is spicy, sweet and so much flavorful. You can replace Schezwan sauce with dark soy sauce for a mildly spiced version of this rice.
 

 

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup basmati Rice / long grain rice
  • 1/2 Cup coconut milk
  • 1 Cup water to cook rice
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon sesame seed oil
  • 1/2 Tablespoon finely chopped ginger
  • 1/2 Tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  • 1 Teaspoon Schezwan sauce
  • 1 Carrot chopped into small cubes
  • 10 green beans chopped finely
  • 1 Spring onion chopped finely
  • 1/4 Cup fresh green peas ( thaw of frozen)
  • 1 Spring onion greens to sprinkle

Directions

1. Wash basmati rice several times and soak it in regular tap water for 10 minutes. set aside
2. In a large pot, add 1 cup water and 1/2 cup coconut milk and salt to taste and bring it to boil
3. Add basmati rice and reduce the flame to medium. Cover the pot with lid and let the rice cook for 10 to 12 minutes until rice is cooked al dente
4. Using a fork gently toss the cooked rice and stir in 1 teaspoon of oil
5. In a skillet /wok heat oil. When the oil is hot, add spring onion, ginger, garlic and fry on high flame for a minute
6.  Then add carrots, green peas and green beans and fry on high flame for a minute
7. Add Schezwan sauce and fry for couple of seconds. Finally add cooked coconut rice and gently mix everything
8. Sprinkle spring onion greens and serve hot

Jamaican Chicken

Have book marked this recipe for Jamaican chicken from 'Sprinkles and Sprouts' and wanted to try it. I had all the required ingredients for the marinade except Scotch bonnet peppers. I used byadagi chillies instead and the chicken turned out super delicious. Chicken drumsticks are marinated overnight and then oven roasted to perfection. It was mildly spicy, little bit sweet, moist and crispy. Kids loved it with mint cilantro dip. I am definitely making them again for the Friday dinner. A must try !
 
 

Ingredients

  • 6 Chicken drumsticks
  • 1 Spring onion
  • 1/2 Inch fresh ginger piece
  • 4 Garlic cloves
  • 3 Dry red chillies
  • 1 Teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 cup tightly packed cilantro leaves
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 Teaspoon organic honey
  • 2 Tablespoon vegetable oil
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped cilantro leaves for garnish
  • Lemon wedges/ slices to serve

Directions


1. In a food processor, add ginger, garlic, dry red chillies, spring onion, stalks of cilantro leaves, dried thyme and process until the mixture is smooth paste
2. Then add fresh lemon juice, honey, oil and salt and pulse it couple of times until it is blended well
3. Add the chicken drumsticks in a large zip lock bag and pour the marinade we prepared at step number two
4. close the bag and mix everything such that drumsticks are well coated with the marinade
5. Original recipe says refrigerate for 4 hours or over night. However I put the marinated chicken drumsticks in the freezer overnight. You can refrigerate overnight as per original recipe
6. If you are freezing , then next day morning thaw chicken and bring it to room temperature
7. Preheat the oven to 200C. Grease a large baking tray / pan and arrange the chicken drumsticks on the tray
8. Drizzle little bit of oil over the drumsticks
9. Cover the baking pan with aluminium foil and bake at 200 C for 15 minutes
10. After 15 minutes, reduce the oven temp to 180 C and bake for 30 minutes more with aluminium foil on
11. Then remove the foil, flip the chicken sides and bake at 180 C for 20 minutes
12. Check if the chicken is cooked through
13. Later turn the broiler mode on and roast chicken quickly for 1 or 2 minutes until you have a nice char on them. Keep an eye while they are under broiler. They tend to burn easily
14. Remove the chicken from the oven. Immediately cover the chicken with aluminium foil to seal in the juices. Otherwise chicken might dry out too quickly
15. After 10 minutes, remove the foil and serve chicken hot. Sprinkle with cilantro leaves and serve with lemon wedges

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Eggless coconut cookies

Crispy, buttery cookies loaded with desiccated coconut and topped with crispy coconut flakes.

 



Yield : 14 Cookies
Recipe Source : http://www.spiceupthecurry.com/eggless-coconut-cookies-recipe/

Ingredients

  • 3/4 Cup All purpose flour
  • 1 and 1/2 Teaspoon Corn flour
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Baking Soda
  • a big pinch of salt
  • 1/4 Cup desiccated coconut + 2 Tablespoons to top the cookies
  • 1/3 Cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1/2 Cup Icing sugar  / confectioner's sugar
  • 1/2 Teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 160 C /  320 F
2. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside
3. In a large mixing bowl, add all purpose flour, baking soda, salt and corn flour. Mix everything
4. In a separate bowl, cream butter and sugar together until the mixture is creamy and pale
5. Add vanilla extract and stir in
6. Now  add the flour mixture to the butter and using a spatula mix everything. This mixture will be quite dry
7. Using hands, bring together the mixture in to a ball
8. Divide the ball into 14 equal sized balls
9. Gently flatten the balls and press desiccated coconut in the center of each cookie
10. Arrange the cookies on the lined cookie sheet and bake at 160 C for 25 minutes or until the edges are crispy and golden
11. Let the cookies cool in the sheet for 10 minutes, then remove them and cool in a wire rack
12. Store in airtight container
 

Pan seared chicken

Chicken marinated in yogurt with Indian spice mixture, pan seared and simmered in chicken broth. Flavorful, moist and crispy chicken! Best served as an appetizer with your favourite dip. I served it with mint cilantro yogurt dip with naan.
 
 

Ingredients

  • 500 grams Chicken cut into small cubes ( I used bread pieces)
  • 2 Tablespoon plain natural yogurt / curd
  • 1 Teaspoon finely chopped ginger
  • 1 Teaspoon finely chopped garlic
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1 Teaspoon red chilli powder / red chilli flakes / paprika
  • 1/2 Teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 Tablespoon rice flour
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/3 Cup chicken broth
  • chopped cilantro leaves to garnish
  • lemon wedges to serve

Directions


1. In a large mixing bowl, add yogurt, ginger, garlic, chilli powder, turmeric powder, garam masala, salt to taste.
2. Sprinkle lemon juice and mix everything
3. Add chicken pieces and mix to coat chicken with the yogurt spice mix
4. Sprinkle lemon juice and gently toss
5. Cover the chicken with plastic wrap and refrigerate for atleast 2 hours. After 2 hours, if there is any water inside chicken, drain water completely. sprinkle rice flour to the marinated chicken and toss/ mix gently
6. In a large skillet, heat oil. When the oil is hot, reduce the flame to medium and add chicken pieces in the skillet
7. Increase the flame to high and fry the chicken 4 minutes. Then flip sides and fry for 4 more minutes until chicken browns nicely and has a nice crust
8. Add 1/3 cup of chicken broth / water and close the skillet with lid and let the chicken cook on medium flame for 10 minutes or until the water evaporates and chicken is cooked through
9. Increase the flame to high and cook chicken for 5 minutes until the chicken turns crispy and has nice golden color
10. Transfer chicken to the serving dish and squeeze juice of half lemon and sprinkle chopped cilantro leaves
11. Serve hot with lemon wedges and sliced onion
 

Monday, 23 March 2015

Coconut crusted raw plantain fries - shallow fried

Amazingly crispy , crunchy, perfectly seasoned fries made with raw plantains. Shallow fried and then quickly crisped in the oven for more crunch. So easy to make and can be made in less than 20 minutes. Plantains are marinated with spice powder for 10 minutes and then coated with coconut and breadcrumbs and shallow fried. A must try recipe ! These are so delicious and better than French fries. I promise !
 


Yield : About 25 fries

Ingredients

  • 1 Raw plantain / raw banana
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli powder / red chilli flakes
  • 1/4 Teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon turmeric powder
  • a pinch of dried thyme
  • a pinch of dried oregano
  • 1 Tablespoon corn flour
  • 1/2 Teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoon vegetable oil to shallow fry

To coat

  • 1/2 Cup bread crumbs
  • 1/4 Cup toasted coconut
  • 1/4 Teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • a pinch of salt to season breadcrumbs

Directions 

1. Peel remove the thick green skin of raw plantain and then chop them into long thin pieces like fries and set aside
2. Sprinkle red chilli powder, cumin powder, turmeric powder, thyme , oregano, salt and gently toss to evenly coat the plantain with spice powder
3. Set aside for 10 minutes
4. Meanwhile in a large plate add bread crumbs. season it with salt and pepper. Set aside
5. In a separate plate, add toasted coconut and set aside
6. In a frying pan, heat oil to shallow fry
7. After 10 minutes, sprinkle corn flour on the plaintain. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon water and toss it.


8. Now take 2 or 3 plantain fingers at a time. Roll each one in breadcrumbs mixture first. Gently press so that bread crumbs will stick over the moist plantain
9. Then roll each plantain finger in toasted coconut and gently press. Repeat step number 8 and 9 for the rest of the plantain finger and set aside in a plate
10. Start frying : When the oil is hot in the frying pan, place 4 to 5 plantain fingers on the pan and shallow fry them on  medium flame. Flip sides and fry until they are nice golden and crispy


11. Drain immediately on a paper towel
12. Once you finish frying all the plantain fingers, arrange them on a baking tray
13. Bake quickly in a preheated oven at 200 C for 3 to 4 minutes until they are more crispier
14. Serve immediately with your favourite dip

Masala Coke

Here is a refreshing drink popular in roadside shops and dhabas in Bangalore and Mumbai. Coke spiked with Indian masala , a beautiful blend of flavors. Masala coke is served in Dhabas as a thirst quencher and it is usually ordered along with spicy tandoori chicken. Lemon and mint adds freshness to coke ,  chaat masala, cumin and ajwain adds a little a nice zing to the drink !  
 
 

Yield : 2 Servings

Ingredients

  • 500 ml Coca-cola ( I used Coca-Cola Zero)
  • 3/4 Teaspoon Cumin Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Chat masala
  • 1/2 Teaspoon black pepper powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Ajwain powder / Omam powder
  • 1 Teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 4 Mint leaves
  • 1/2 Teaspoon salt

Directions

1. Slightly crush mint leaves in mortar pestle
2. In a pitcher, add cumin powder, chat masala, black pepper powder, ajwain powder and mint leaves.
3. Add lemon juice and salt. Toss everything
4. Now pour in coca cola little by little. Coke will froth up
5. Give it a stir and add more coke after it stops bubbling
6.  Give one more stir and pour the masala coke in ice-filled serving glasses
7. Serve once

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Dhaba Style Keema / minced meat

Dhaba style Keema: Juicy, moist, creamy and delicious minced meat preparation as served in roadside restaurants. Best served with naan / roti with sliced onions, sprinkled with lemon juice and a blob of butter. Delicious !
 
 
 
Yield : 2 Servings

Ingredients

  • 250 Grams Mutton mince or ground beef
  • 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 Tablespoon salted butter
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 2 Green cardamom
  • 1 Clove
  • 1 Teaspoon cumin Seeds
  • 1 Medium sized onion chopped finely
  • 1/2 Tablespoon ginger chopped finely
  • 1/2 Tablespoon garlic chopped finely
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1 Teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon cumin powder
  • 2 Tablespoon milk ( I used full cream milk)
  • 1 Medium sized tomato pureed
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped cilantro leaves to garnish
  • Juice of half lemon

Directions

1. In a pan, heat oil and butter. When the butter melts, add bay leaf, green cardamom, clove, cumin seeds and fry for few seconds
2. Then add chopped onions and sauté until they are soft
3. Add ginger, garlic and sauté until garlic turns light golden
4. Add coriander powder, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, cumin powder and add 1/4 cup water and sauté until the water evaporates
5. minced mutton / keema and sauté on high flame for 5 minutes until keema changes color
6. Add milk and give it a stir and mix well
7. Then add tomato puree and mix everything
8. Add 1/2 cup water, season with salt and cook mutton until the water evaporates and keema is cooked through
9. Sprinkle lemon juice and chopped cilantro leaves
10. Serve hot with naan/ roti with sliced onions

 

Indian Gooseberry - Health benefits

Say hello to Amla - Indian Gooseberry ! These frutis are sour, sweet, tart , pungent and fibrous. Though you may not find its taste appealing, don't be quick to dismiss it. These small fruits are packed with nutrition and have medicinal properties. Amla can be consumed in many forms like pickle, juice, chutney or best eaten raw. They can be soaked in salt water (brine) and consumed. You can sprinkle salt and chilli powder over them and eat raw.



 

I am going to list down some of the health benefits of amla that I am aware of...

Disclaimer : I am not a medical professional, nor a doctor. This home remedy has been tried and tested at my home. However , using this remedy should be 'your' personal decision. Always seek medical help when needed. 
1. Anemia : Amla is rich in Vitamin C and Iron. If you are Anemic , you can eat one raw amla a day. It helps !
2. Constipation : Amla is rich in fibre and known as natural laxative. An amla a day helps cure constipation
3. Cold and Cough : Mix 2 tablespoons of fresh amla juice with 2 tablespoons of honey. Have this mixture three times a day to treat cold and cough. Since Amla is rich in vitamin C, they help improve immunity
4. Joint pain / Arthritis : Amla contain anti inflammatory properties and helps reduce swelling in joints
3. Mouth ulcer and bad breath : Mixing fresh amla juice with water and then gargling with amla juice helps cure mouth ulcer and bad breath
4. Skin : Amla is a natural blood purifier. Take a amla everyday to have a healthier skin. It also fights against infections. It prevents wrinkles on the face. Apply dried amla powder mixed with water on your face and wash off. Your face will glow !
5. To prevent premature grey hair : Amla is believed to nourish hair and scalp and prevent premature grey hair. Heat 1/2 cup of coconut oil. Add 2 amla in the hot oil and continue to cook / fry the amla until they turn black. Switch off the flame. Remove amla from oil and discard. Cool the oil completely and store in container. Apply this oil on hair and scalp and leave it on hair for 20 minutes. Then rinse off. You will be amazed at the results.

How to eat Amla : These fruits are super sour and tart. Though there are so many ways you can eat amla - in the form of pickle, juice, mix in rice, powder, I suggest eating it raw. Raw amla taste might not be too appealing , but you can consider its medicinal values and try eating it raw. However I just love eating plain raw amla ! Yumm !
 

Mutton pepper masala

A super easy side to prepare with mutton / lamb. Mutton pressure cooked with spices and then cooked with garlic, pepper and caramelized shallots. This side is spicy,  full of flavors, has little bit of sweetness from caramelized onions and tastes yumm with roti or rasam rice.
 

 
 

Ingredients

To pressure cook mutton

  • 500 Grams Mutton cut into medium pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon ginger garlic paste
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2 Teaspoon salt  

For the masala 

  • 6 Garlic cloves
  • 1 Teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 1/4 Teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/4 Teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil / sesame seed oil
  • 1 green cardamom
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1/2 Cup shallots chopped finely
  • 1 Sprig of curry leaf
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of red chilli powder
  • Salt to taste 

Directions 

1. Pressure cook mutton with the list of ingredients listed 'To pressure cook mutton' along with 1/2 cup water for 8 whistles on low flame. Set aside
2. In a food processor / mixie add garlic cloves, whole black peppercorns, cumin seeds, fennel seeds and pulse /  grind it to coarse paste
3. In a wok / pan, heat oil. When the oil is hot, add cloves, green cardamom, bay leaf and fry for few seconds. Then add curry leaves and fry for few seconds until they are crispy
4. Then add ground garlic pepper paste we prepared at step number 2 and fry on low flame for 2 minutes until garlic turns light golden
5. Then add shallots and fry until shallots are soft and slightly caramelized
6. Add chilli powder, salt and give it a stir
7. Add the cooked mutton along with the remaining mutton stock. Mix everything and cook mutton
until all the water/ stock evaporates and the masala turns thick / required consistency
8. Serve hot with roti/ rice as a side
 

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Shami Kabab

Shami Kababs are delicious patties made of minced meat, chickpeas, egg and spices. These are served as an appetizer / snack with mint cilantro chutney/dip.  You can use these kebabs in burgers, pita or stuff it inside roti with hung curd and veggies. 
 
 

Ingredients

To Cook minced meat

  • 250 Grams minced meat ( I used minced mutton. You could use minced beef )
  • 1/4 Cup Chana dal ( If you don't have chana dal, use 1/4 cup chickpeas)
  • 1 Tablespoon ginger garlic paste
  • 8 whole blackpeppercorns
  • 1/2 Teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli powder
  • Salt to taste

For the Kabab

  • 1 Egg
  • 1 green chilli chopped finely
  • 1 Teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1 Large onion chopped finely
  • 1 Tablespoon cilantro leaves
  • Juice of half lemon
  • 3 Tablespoons vegetable oil to shallow fry kebabs

Preparation

If you are using chana dal, soak it in tap water for 30 minutes. If you are using chickpeas, soak it overnight. Alternatively , you can use canned boiled chickpeas

Directions

 1. Add minced meat, chana dal, ginger garlic paste, garam masala, whole black peppercorns, red chilli powder
2. Mix everything together. Add 1/3 cup of water and cook for 15 minutes on medium flame until water evaporates completely. I pressure cooked meat for 2 whistles. After pressure drops, opened the lid and again kept the pressure cooker on medium flame for quick 2 to 3 minutes until water evaporated completely




3. Let the mixture cool down for 10 minutes. Then add it to a food processor / mixie and pulse it 2 or 3 times until it is just ground. Don't over grind. Transfer this mixture to a large mixing bowl

 

4. In a pan, heat 1 teaspoon vegetable oil. When the oil is hot, add finely chopped onions and fry until they are soft
5. Add these onions to the meat mixture. Add chopped green chillies, chopped cilantro and juice of half lemon
6. In a small bowl, add egg and sprinkle a pinch of salt. Whisk it gently
7. Add 1/2 of this egg mixture to the meat


8. Using a spatula gently fold in everything. Do not over mix. If you over mix, the kebabs become dense and hard. Pinch about 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of kebab mixture and roll them into ball. Then gently flatten each roll into kabab. Set aside
9. In a pan, heat 3 tablespoons oil for shallow frying. When the oil is hot, place 4 kababs in the oil and fry until they are crispy and golden. Flip side and shallow fry on the other side too
10. Repeat the process and shallow fry the remaining kababs
11. Serve hot with mint cilantro chutney

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Chilli Garlic Prawns

An excellent starter dish with prawns and my all time favourite Chinese take out. Prawns are cooked in chilli and garlic ground paste with a hint of cumin and black peppercorns. This dish might look fiery hot, but its actually very mildly spiced since I removed the seeds from the red chillies. 
 
Best served as an appetizer with your favourite dip. These prawns can also be served with roti / naan or with steamed rice/ fried rice.
 
 
 
 

 

Ingredients

  • 15 Prawns - clean and devein
  • 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 Tablespoon salted butter
  • 4 Garlic cloves
  • 4 Dry red chillies
  • 1/4 Teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 Teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • Salt to taste
  • Spring onion greens to garnish
  • 1/2 Teaspoon freshly squeezed  lemon juice

Directions

1. Clean and devein prawns. Remove head and then pull the legs and shell and remove it. Using a paring knife remove the dark dorsal vein from the prawns. Set aside in a large bowl with plenty of water
2. In a microwave safe coffee mug heat 1 cup of water on high for 1 minute
3. Add dry red chillies in the hot water and set aside for 10 minutes
4. After 10 minutes,  slit the chillies and using a spoon remove the seeds. If you want spicy masala, you can leave the seeds in
5. In a food processor, add garlic, red chillies, cumin seeds, whole black peppercorns and grind it to coarse paste with 2 tablespoons of water
6. In a frying pan, add vegetable oil and butter
7. When the oil is hot, turn the flame to low and add the ground chilli garlic paste and fry for 5 minutes until all the water in the ground paste evaporates and the masala turns to a dark red color
8. Season with salt
9. Add prawns and increase the flame to medium and cook for 2 to 3 minutes flipping sides once or twice
10. Cook until the prawns are cooked through. Do not over cook prawns , they become chewy and hard if you overcook
11. Immediately squeeze fresh lemon juice and garnish with spring onion greens

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Eggless toasted coconut Tea cake

Our family favourite tea cake, absolutely moist, light and delicious ! Awesome flavor and crunch from the toasted coconuts. This cake is not overly sweet and perfect with the glaze. This cake is one of the most ordered cake from my home bakery. Its so so good !
 
 
 

Ingredients

  • 1 and 1/4 Cup All purpose flour
  • 3/4 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Baking Soda
  • a big pinch of salt
  • 2/3 Cup Unsalted Butter at room temperature
  • 1/2 Cup granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 Cup Curd / plain natural yogurt
  • 1/2 Cup Buttermilk ( To make buttermilk at home, take a coffee mug. Add 1/2 cup milk. I used full cream milk. Add 1 Teaspoon of distilled white vinegar and stir in. Leave the mixture for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes milk would have curdled and buttermilk is ready for use)
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1/2 Cup Milk at room temperature
  • 3/4 Cup toasted sweetened shredded coconut ( Recipe for sweetened coconut available below)

For the glaze

  • 1/2 Cup confectioners Sugar/ Icing Sugar
  • 1/2 Teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 Teaspoon lemon Zest
  • 2 Tablespoon Milk at room temperature

Preparation :

Prepare sweetened shredded coconut :
 


1. Peel/ remove brown skin of coconut. We need just the white flesh of coconut. Grate/shred white part of coconut
2. In a bowl take 1/2 Cup water and add 2 Tablespoon granulated sugar. Add grated coconut to the sweet water and soak for 30 min
3. Drain and pat dry in a paper towel
4. Preheat Oven at 180 C / 350 F
4. In a oven safe tray / cookie sheet , spread the sweetened coconut and toast them at 180 C. Watch carefully and move it around every 3 to 4 min for even browning. They may burn very quickly, so you need to watch close
5. Once coconut is browned, remove from Oven and let it cool

Directions for Baking the cake


1. Preheat oven to 180 C, grease a 6 inch loaf pan and set aside
2. In a bowl, sieve AP flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt together for 2 times and set aside
3. In a separate bowl beat butter with a hand mixer for a min. Then add sugar and cream butter and sugar for 2 more min
4. Add yogurt and buttermilk and beat using the hand blender until everything is mixed together. Now add vanilla extract and beat one more time
5. Adding dry ingredients to wet mixture : Add flour in 3 additions alternating with milk. Beat until dry ingredients are evenly incorporated in wet mixture and there is no lump
6. Finally fold in 2/3 of toasted sweetened coconut in the batter
7. Pour the batter in the greased loaf pan and bake at 180 C for 45 to 50 min
8. Start watching the cake after 45 min. Bake until the tooth pick inserted comes out clean. My cake was done in 50 min.
9. Once done, remove from the oven and let it cool
10. Mean while prepare the glaze by whisking together confectioners  / icing sugar and 2 tablespoons milk. Add lemon zest and lemon juice and give it a stir
11. Drizzle the glaze over the cake and sprinkle the remaining toasted coconut over the glaze. Drizzle glaze when the cake is warm, that way it will get absorbed easily and adds sweetness to the cake

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Ginger and mint lemon Sharbath

A refreshing drink made with lemon, fresh mint and ginger . This drink is sweet, tart and has mild flavour of mint and goodness of ginger. Super quick and easy to make and perfect for a hot summer day.

 

Ingredients

  • 500 ml chilled water
  • 2 Lemons
  • 4 Tablespoons of sugar
  • 1/2 Inch ginger piece
  • 2 Tablespoon fresh mint leaves
  • two big pinches of salt
  • a pinch of cumin powder

Directions

1. In a pan over low flame, add one cup water, sugar and stir until sugar dissolves
2. Crush mint leaves and ginger using a mortar pestle
3. Add this crushed mixture to the water and bring it to boil. Switch off the flame
4. Let the water cool completely. Strain the water through a strainer and remove ginger and mint leaves.
5. Squeeze juice out of lemon
6. In a container / pitcher, add chilled water. Add lemon juice and give it a stir
7. Add the mint, ginger and sugar syrup we prepared at step number 3 to the pitcher
8. Stir again. Add two pinches of salt, a pinch of cumin powder and give it a stir
9. Check if the juice is sweet enough for you. Add more sugar or honey to increase the sweetness
10. Serve once. The lemon wedges and mint leaves you see on the picture above are for photography purpose only.

Spinach and scrambled egg grilled cheese sandwich

A hearty spinach and scrambled egg grilled cheese sandwich is just what you need to start your day ! Satisfying and filling breakfast that tastes so good ! Can be made in less than 10 minutes. I bet you will be making this sandwich again and again...
 
 
 
 

Ingredients

  • 2 white sandwich bread slices
  • 1 and 1/2 Tablespoon salted butter
  • 1 Garlic clove crushed
  • 1/2 cup packed fresh spinach
  • 1 Egg
  • 1/4 Teaspoon red chilli flakes
  • 1/4 Teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Cheese slice ( I used amul cheese)
  • salt to taste

Directions

1. In a pan, add 1/2 tablespoon butter. Add crushed garlic clove and fry for 30 seconds
2. Once the garlic turns light golden, add spinch

                                   


3. Sprinkle a pinch of salt and stir fry for a minute
4. Add egg , sprinkle salt and pepper and using a spatula gently stir the eggs
and cook on low flame until the eggs are smooth and scrambled

                                   



5. Turn off the heat
6. Apply butter on both sides of the bread slices
7. Top a bread slice with spinach scrambled egg mixture. sprinkled red chilli flakes




8. Top the mixture with a cheese slice
9. Close the sandwich with the second bread slice ( buttered both sides)
10. Grill the sandwich on the sandwich maker until they are crispy and golden
11. Serve hot


 

Monday, 16 March 2015

Potato Kurma / korma

Parboiled potatoes cooked in coconut, cashew nuts and whole spices paste. This curry / korma is mildly spiced, full of flavor and tastes delicious. Shallots add a nice sweet taste to the korma. Best served with roti / naan / or Idly, Dosa.
 

Ingredients 

  • 2 large Potatoes - boiled and roughly chopped into big chunks
  • 2 Tablespoon Vegetable oil
  • 1 Sprig of Curry leaves
  • 1/2 Cup shallots grind to fine paste
  • 1 Medium Tomato chopped finely
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste
  • Chopped cilantro leaves for garnish

To grind

 
 
  • 4 Tablespoon Fresh coconut slices
  • 3 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 inch Fresh Ginger piece
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Fennel Seeds
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Poppy Seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon Fried Gram
  • 2 Cloves
  • 1 Green Cardamom
  • 1/2 Inch Cinnamon stick
  • 4 Cashew nuts
  • 1 Tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 2 dry red chillies ( adjust according to your taste)
  • 1/4 Cup water to grind

Preparation


1. Add all the ingredients listed under 'To Grind' into a food processor / mixie / grinder and grind it to fine paste. Set aside
2. Wash potatoes. pressure cook them for 4 whistles with 1/2 cup water and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Once the pressure drops, open the lid , let them cool. Peel remove the skin. Roughly chop the potatoes into big chunks.
Alternatively you can cook the potatoes in a large pot with plenty of water and salt until they are cooked through

Directions

1. In a pan, heat oil. When the oil is hot, add curry leaves
2. When they splutter, add shallots paste + 1/2 teaspoon salt and sauté until the paste turns light golden
3. Add chopped tomatoes and sauté until the tomatoes are mushy
4. Add the ground paste we prepared at step number 1 of 'Preparation'
5. Reduce the  flame to low and keep stirring the paste in oil for 5 minutes or until oil separates from the mixture. Add 1/4 cup water to the mixture. Bring the mixture to boil and then simmer the mixture. Cook the mixture on low flame stirring intermittently until oil separates from the mixture
6. Add turmeric powder and give it a stir
7. Add chopped par boiled potatoes
8. Season with salt and add 1 and 1/2 cups of water. Close the pan with lid and let the korma cook for 10 to 15 minutes or until the gravy reaches required consistency
9. Garnish with chopped cilantro leaves and serve hot with roti / naan or with idly / dosa.

Hara Bara Kebab

Healthy and delicious shallow fried Kebabs made with spinach , green peas and potatoes. Perfect finger food to serve as an appetizer or as evening snack with tea. These kebabs are also great for stuffing inside sandwiches, burgers and pita bread. Healthy, light and filling !
 

 
 
Yield : 10 kebab

Ingredients 

  • 1 Cup fresh green peas ( thaw if frozen)
  • 1 Cup Fresh spinach (that if frozen)
  • 1 Large potato parboiled and mashed
  • 1/2 inch fresh ginger piece
  • 1 green chilli
  • 1/2 Cup bread crumbs
  • 1/4 Teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon red chilli flakes
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 Tablespoon vegetable oil to shallow fry ( I used EVOO)

To coat the kebab 

  • 1/2 Cup Bread crumbs
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Italian seasoning ( mixture of dried thyme, oregano and rosemary, garlic powder)
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli flakes
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt

Directions 

1. In a microwave safe bowl, add green peas along with 1/2 cup water + 2 pinches of salt and microwave on high for 4 minutes. Drain water and set aside
2. In the same microwave bowl, add spinach along with 1/4 cup water + 1 pinch of salt and microwave on high for a minute. Drain water immediately and squeeze excess water from spinach. Chop it finely and Set aside
3. In a food processor add ginger and green chilli. Grind it to fine paste. Then add par boiled green peas and pulse it couple of times until they resemble coarse mixture
4. In a large bowl, add boiled and mashed potatoes. Add ground green peas mixture we prepared at step number 3. Add blanched and chopped spinach



5. Add bread crumbs. red chilli powder, cumin powder, freshly ground black pepper, garlic powder, red chilli flakes



 

6. Mix everything together. Make small balls out of this mixture and set aside
 
                                       
 
 
7. Heat oil in a tawa/ pan for shallow frying the kebab
8. In a plate, Mix all the ingredients listed under 'To coat the kebab'.
Now, take the kebab ball and flatten them gently to from thick discs                                   
 
9. Roll each discs in bread crumb mixture and coat the cutlets on both sides with bread crumb mixture
 
                                    
 
 
10. When the oil is hot, place 5 or 6  cutlets on the pan and shallow fry them until they are crispy and golden. Flip side and shallow fry on the other side too


11. Remove from the pan and drain on a kitchen towel
12. Shallow fry the remaining cutlets in batches of 4
13. Serve hot with ketchup of your favourite dip. You can serve it as a evening snack with a cup of tea