Friday, July 31, 2009

Reshmi Kababs & A stove top version!

Our family LOVES chicken so anything made with it is finished instantly :) So we usually love experimenting with chicken.
Kabab making was something that we rarely did at home. And me being a person who love to experiment had this in the back of mind always!And I was determined to try it one day!
And recently Hetal & Anuja demonstrated an easy STOVE TOP version...I followed them blindly! :) I knew I can never go wrong with any of their recipes :)
Reshmi Kababs:
Recipe(verbatim) by Hetal & Anuja

Ingredients:

Boneless Skinless Chicken - 1 lb (approx 1/2 kg)
Heavy Whipping Cream - 1/2 cup
Ginger/Garlic Paste - 2 Tbsp
Ground Mint Leaves - 1 Tbsp
Ground Cilantro (Coriander Leaves) - 1 Tbsp
Ground Green Chilies - to taste
Salt - to taste

Method:

1. In a large mixing bowl, mix together all ingredients EXCEPT Chicken.
2. Taste the mixture and adjust salt before adding chicken.
3. Add Chicken and mix well.
4. Cover and keep in the refrigerator to marinate for at least 4-6 hours (overnight if you have time).
5. Soak wooden skewers in water for 1-2 hours.
6. Pierce the chicken onto the skewers and place on a baking sheet lined foil and spray coated with oil.
7. Broil in the oven on High (on top shelf) for 10 minutes.
8. Turn chicken over and continue to broil for another 5 - 7 minutes, until light brown.

Alternate Cooking Method:

1. Add marinated chicken with all of the sauce (marinade) into a hot non-stick pan.
2. Cook uncovered and stirring continuously until chicken is light brown (caramelized).
3. Turn off stove. Cover the pan and let the chicken rest for 5 minutes before serving.


It was absolutely delicious and flavourful! I just couldn't resist myself tasting and re-tasting the marinade! It was an instant hit at home! And off it goes to my recipe collections and onto Amma's Cookery Class index :)

Note: Sorry for the not-so-good clicks! We made this for dinner and our home has 99% incandescent lamps, so that explains the yellow tinge! :(

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Urulakkizhangu Mezhukkuvaratti - An aromatic Kerala side dish using potatoes



It was just few days ago Aparna & myself were twittering about this dish and I realised that I have never posted this before! How could I do that when this is my all time favourite?? Hmmm so the very next day we happened to make this at home and here it is :)

This dish has a lot of memories... it was my paternal grandmom( Mamma) who introduced this in our family and it was my dad's fave and now mine :) I can eat it anytime....as a snack or as a side dish! :) Just love it! It is perfect when paired with yoghurt/moru curry & rice.

Whenever Amma makes it...I tell her that I still clearly remeber how she used to feed me balls of rice mixed with moru curry and potato mezhukkuvaratti( which literally means 'smeared with oil')when we used to stay over in our estate... and that too when I was sitting on our trailer ( our jeep had a trailer for collecting all the farm produce and that was my place when I was fed :D )


Potato Mezhukkuvaratti
Recipe by Mamma

Ingredients:
Potatoes-4-5 medium sized
Garlic-5-6 cloves
Shallots/Sambar onions -8-10
Dry red chillies - 3-4
Chilli powder-1 1/2 - 2 tsp depending on your spice tolerance
Turmeric powder- a pinch
Water*-1/4 cup
Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
Salt- to taste
Curry leaves- 1 sprig
Oil-5-6 tbsp ( we use coconut oil & we swear by it :D )

Method:
  • Wash,peel and cut the potato into bite sized cubes and leave it in water so that it does not discolour.
  • Grind garlic,shallots & dry red chillies to a paste using a mixie or a mortar & pestle ( preferably the granite one)
  • Heat oil, splutter the mustard seeds.
  • Saute the ground ingredients till a lovely aroma comes.
  • Lower the flame and the powders and mix well.
  • Add the potatoes ( we usually just take them directly out of the water , shake of the excess slightly and add it to the masala) and mix well.
  • Close with a lid and let it on low flame cook for 5-8 mins stirring well in between ( If you are going to drain the potatoes completely and add them, sprinkle 1/4 cup of water over them and let them cook)
  • Once it is cooked, remove the lid and fry it slightly for 2-3 mins adding oil if needed.
  • Garnish with curry leaves and serve hot with plain rice.


Some notes:

We usually let it cook till it is almost dry...kinda fry types ...so that the potatoes are well coated with the masala and they are slightly crisp on the outer edges but soft inside. So it might call for more oil. But if you do not want to use too much oil, no issues...go ahead ! I really feel potatoes made in any form is really delicious!


Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Entry for Click event - Bi Colour



It's that time of the month where we need to send in our entries for the Click July 09 hosted by Jai & Bee of Jugalbandi. And the theme is Bi-Colour.




I need to chose now and I just cant fix my mind upon one! So please leave in your suggestions and I will send that as my entry :)

Update : I got more thumbs-up for the last pic through Twitter, Facebook and thro the comment column . Thank you all! :)



Monday, July 27, 2009

~ *Peaches & Cream Gateau with Hazlenut Sponge *~





It was my Grand Aunt's birthday yesterday and I had been planning to make a cake for her for the Birthday Party. But I really din't know what flavour that I should be making...she is 87 :) All I knew was I had to make something with Peaches and Cream because I had a tin of peaches from my Ooty trip and 2-3 packets of cream which was about to hit the expiry date! Cream is too precious for me to waste ...we rarely find them in stores here :)

So finally after I tweeted for help... my friends Deeba, Helen & Jeena gave me so many tips with which I could decide upon one :)
I also had some Hazlenuts which were given to me by my Sweetheart Jobin! Mmmmwwaaahh! ;) So I thought of using them as well !
Peaches & Cream Gateau with Hazlenut Sponge

For the sponge: Recipe by Deeba
Eggs - 6
Flour-150 g -3 tbsp
Sugar-150 g
Cornflour-1 tbsp
Ground hazlenuts-2 tbsp
Baking powder-1 tsp

Method:
  • Beat the eggs and sugar till thick and mousse like in consistency.
  • Fold in the flour sifted along with cornflour, ground hazlenuts, and baking powder.
  • Pour into a prepared tin ( I used my springform 9" tin) and bake till done (mine took 30 mins).

For the filling:
Cream-400 ml
Peaches- 1 tin
Powdered sugar-5-6 tbsp
Chopped Hazlenuts - 50 g

Method:
  • Whip the cream until thick and form soft peaks by adding powdered sugar little by little.
  • Slice the peaches lengthwise and keep them ready.Reserve the syrup.

For the decoration on top:
Sliced peaches
Whipped cream
Hazlenuts,whole
Assembly:
  • Slit the sponge cake into 3 or 4 layers.
  • Sprinkle the reserved syrup from the tin evenly on the sponge.
  • Apply 1/3 cup of cream.
  • Arrange the sliced peaches.
  • Sprinle the nuts on top of the peaches.
  • Continue with the other layers.
  • Decorate the top with remaining whipped cream , peaches and some whole hazlenuts.

When I gave the cake to my aunt she said 'You always do things like these' and kissed me :) She made my day!! :) And the cake was so well recieved :) I got a huge thumbs-up from my mom who usually dislikes any form of cakes! :)

I have some good news to share with you all!! :) Nithya from 4th Sense Samayal has awarded me with a Kreative Blogger Award! Thanks a ton Nithya! :)



The Kreativ Blogger award comes with some rules:-

1. You must thank the person who has given you the award.
2. Copy the logo and place it on your blog.
3. Link to the person who has nominated you for the award.
4. Name 7 things about yourself that people might find interesting.
5. Nominate 7 other Kreativ Bloggers.
6. Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate.
7. Leave a comment on which of the blogs to let them know they have been nominated


Okay now onto the 7 things about me :)

1. I am someone who needs things to be done FAST and not dragged about.
2.I can stay awake for days together just to talk :) I talk a LOT!
3.Hate hypocrisy & bribing ! :P
4.Love arts & crafts! Did you all know that I can embroider,knit,do crochet,tatting,stitch garments,bags etc? LOL! yes! I really can :)
5.It is one of my dreams to host a cookery show like Nigella Lawson ;D
6.Another dream is to publish a cookbook...You see I have many dreams ;)
7.I can do things only if I really want to because I don't believe in doing things just for the heck of it! :P

Now for the nominations!



Hope you all have a beautiful day!! :)



Sunday, July 26, 2009

~It's cookie time at the Daring Bakers ~Milano Cookies ~ My 4th DB challenge

Milano cookies were something I have always loved...we use to get a share when my aunt visited us from Muscat. I don't remeber the brand but it used to come in white paper packets and they tasted real good. So the minute I knew this was our challenge for the month + a Mallow cookie...I was really excited. Wanted to give the mallow cookie a try BUT somehow that 'want' just din't materialise. So I gave in for the Milano cookie.

The recipe given on the DB forum had lots of egg whites and so I followed the Isa Chandra's Vegan version posted in one of the forums by
Singing Horse.

The July Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Nicole at Sweet Tooth. She choseChocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies and Milan Cookies from pastry chef Gale Gand of the Food Network.


Vegan Milanos

Recipe by Isa Chandra

1/3 cup rice milk (or soy, whatever you got)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Scant 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
2 cups flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped (or use chocolate chips)

  • Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease 2 large cookie sheets.
  • In a large mixing bowl, use a strong fork to mix together milk, sugar, oil, vanilla and zest.
  • Add half of the flour, along with the cornstarch, baking powder and salt; mix well. Add the remaining flour and mix until you have a soft, pliable dough.
  • Make sure your hands are very clean and dry, and dust them with flour. Stuffs about to get messy. Sort of.
  • Grab about 1 tablespoon’s worth of dough and roll it into a ball, and then roll into a log that’s about 1 1/2 inches long. Flatten with the palms of your hand to create an oval that is 2 inches long and 1 inch across, then straighten the edges out with your fingers. Basically, if you know what a milano looks like, that’s the shape your going for. But this is homemade, so don’t try to be perfect. You aren’t a machine (or are you?)
  • Continue with the rest of the dough, flouring your hands before you form each cookie, until you have 16 cookies placed about 1 inch apart (they don’t spread much.) I had to do this in 2 batches because of my small oven, so while these baked I started my next batch of 16. If you’ve got a big oven then do both trays of 16 at once.
  • Bake for 14 to 16 minutes, until tops are firm and edges are ever so slightly browned. Remove from oven and let rest for 2 minutes. Use a thin, flexible spatula to transfer to a cooling rack. Meanwhile, bake your next batch and melt your chocolate*.
  • Once cookies are cool enough to handle (only about 10 minutes), take a cookie and dip the bottom into the chocolate. Then take another cookie and dip it, and place the dipped sides together to form a sandwich. Don’t press them hard lest the chocolate smush out. Place them on a tray or several plates that will fit in your fridge. Continue with the remaining cookies until you have 16 sandwiches. Have a wet rag at the ready to wipe your fingers between putting the cookies together, to avoid chocolate fingerprints on the cookies. Or just lick the chocolate off. Or just decide that who cares about chocolate fingerprints.
  • Place cookies in the fridge to set for at least an hour. Bring back to room temperature before serving (about 1/2 an hour.)

The dough was easy to work with and it shaped up really well. But , it became very soggy as soon as it came out of the oven...blame the humidity? Not sure. As far the taste is concerned, it was OK and not what I expected it to be. It did taste fine... but not as good as a milano.

Friday, July 24, 2009

A nature walk on a sunny morning

It was raining continously in my coastal town for the past almost 3 weeks! Never saw the sun forget about the eclipse! All our days were cloud-filled! But since yesterday the rains seem to focus on some other place...for a change :D So I thought it was best to walk around my house & enjoy the nature...which I have stopped since 3 weeks. Of course! I did take my beloved camera with me... Here are some shots around my house at 7 a.m :)











And look who was watching me all this while! :D

Homemade Banana Chips & I hit half century~51th post~


I hit half century today! Woohoo!! :)) Never knew I would come this far!! :) So today's post is an all Malayali's fave snack... Banana chips!! It is for sure that each Malayali carries atleast one pack of it when he/she goes out of Kerala! I used to carry min 1.5 kilos everytime I went to my hostel... loved munching on it :) And I still do :)
It might seem difficult to make these at home...but they are not and they taste 200% better than store made or even freshly fried from local shops. Once you are bitten by the home made taste then you will never buy from other sources.
Homemade Banana Chips
The way my mom makes

Ingredients:
Raw bananas
Oil
Water
Salt
Turmeric powder(optional)




Method:
  • Peel the raw bananas and leave it in water for 1 hour.
  • Heat oil (deep frying) and when it is real hot slice the bananas directly into the oil.
  • Stir slightly so that they dont stick together.
  • You can add salt and a pinch or two of turmeric into it at this stage. ( we don't add turmeric and we add the salt later otherwise we might not be able to use the salty oil later)
  • Fry till it's nicely yellow on the outside and crisp looking. Taste in between :D
  • Drain them on kitchen towels. You can add salt at this stage too and toss them well.
  • Store it in airtight tins.
Try this and be sure to get addicted! :) It's a perfect all-time snack! Let your mouth keep munching all the way!! :)
Happy Friday everyone!! :)



Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Kothu Parota - Shredded Parota sauteed with mixed veggies and egg

Sometimes you might be in a hurry or in a mood to finish the leftovers in the form of parotas,rotis etc...esp a fridge clean-up session :) This dish is highly versatile where in any form of flatbreads can be used to dish out a wholesome meal in just a few minutes. We had some parotas lying in our fridge from the previous day's lunch+ some veggies. So Amma came up with the brilliant idea of making 'Kothu Parota'. You can eat it as is or serve with some veg/non veg curry.
Parota is a highly flaky slightly crisp flatbread made out of All Purpose Flour/Maida and is found in every hotel in Kerala. It is slightly oily but very very tasty!! Many companies have come up with frozen parota's but nothing beats the freshly made one! That applies to everything!! :)
Kothu Parota
Recipe by my mom

Parota- 10 (you can either use fresh ones or frozen, if it is frozen prepare them according to the instructions on the packet)
Ginger garlic paste-2 tbsp
Carrot-100g, grated /chopped fine
French beans-100 grams, chopped fine
Cabbage-100 g,chopped fine
Green chillies- 2-3 ,slitted lenghtwise
Soya sauce- 1-2 tbsp
Salt- to taste
Oil-3-4 tbsp
Eggs-2

Method:
  • Snip the parotas using a kitchen knife into bite sized pieces.
  • Heat oil, saute ginger garlic paste, add the veggies and stir well. Keep it covered and cook for approx. 3-4 mins.
  • Add the parota pieces and mix well.
  • Add soya sauce& salt and mix well.
  • Scramble eggs separately and garnish the 'kothu parota' with it.
  • Serve hot!
The scrambled egg is highly optional ! We started using it because my brother needs it with everything! :)

Update(23/7):
I have a happy news to share today!! My 'Followers' are 50 in number today! YAY to all you guys!! Thanks for making my day!!!

Have a great day!!
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