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Saturday, 23 July 2011

Crumbled Cottage Cheese Spinach Curry!

Ingredients

2 cup - spinach, shredded 
1/2 cup - onion, chopped
1/2 cup - yellow bell pepper
1 - green chilli, finely chopped (more or less)
1 tsp - ginger, thinly sliced
4 tbsp - low fat milk/cream
2 tsp - sunflower oil
1/4 tsp - cumin seeds
1 /4 tsp - cinnamon powder
1/4 tsp - clove powder
1/4 tsp - cardamom powder
salt to taste
a generous pinch of sugar
2 tbsp - tomato, chopped (to garnish)

For the crumbled cottage cheese

2 cup - low fat milk

Method
  1. Blanch the spinach in salted boiling water for 2 minutes. Refresh in chilled water and squeeze out excess water.
  2. Heat oil in a non stick pan, add cumin seeds and when the seeds start to splutter add the green chillies, onions and bell pepper and cook for a minute. 
  3. Add the blanched spinach, crumbled cottage cheese and cook again for a minute stirring lightly. Add the spices and the milk/cream and cook again for a minute.
  4. Garnish with finely chopped tomatoes and serve hot. 


Enjoy!

Stuffed Sago Tikkis

Fritters go really well with the rainy weather, but certainly not with me :-) (Frying is a very rare phenomenon in my kitchen). I decided to make these stuffed sago tikkis (of course not fried) 




Ingredients

1/4 cup - sago (sabudana), soaked in 1 cup of water for 3-4 hrs
2 - potatoes, boiled and grated
1 - green chilli (more or less)
2 inch - ginger, grated
2 tbsp - coriander leaves, chopped
salt to taste
oil to grease the pan

For the filling

1 - carrot medium size, grated
8-10 pieces - raisins
1/4 tsp - red chilli flakes (more or less)
salt to taste
1 cup - low fat milk for crumbled cottage cheese,

Method
  1. Remove excess water from the sago.
  2. Add the sago, grated potatoes, green chilli, ginger, salt and coriander leaves in a bowl and mix well.
  3. In another bowl, add the grated carrots, raisins, crumbled cottage cheese, red chilli flakes and salt and mix well.
  4. Take a portion of potato-sago mix in damp palms, flatten them slightly. Place a little filling in the center and close in the edges to enclose the stuffing. Press gently. 
  5. Heat a non stick pan, grease it with a little oil and pan fry the tikkis from both the sides until golden brown.
  6. Serve hot with coriander chutney. (I had some of the filling leftover so used them to make parathas.)


We enjoyed the rain with these stuffed tikkis and a cuppa ginger tea :-) Hope you like them too. 

Enjoy!

Chocolate Delight

All these sweet memories were refreshed when I made this dessert. I did change the recipe a bit, though, to match the development of my taste buds since then and also trying to avoid too many calories :-)





Ingredients

50 gram - dark chocolate (I used one with 80% cocoa solids), melted and slightly cooled
2 tbsp - honey (more or less)
2 tbsp - powdered milk
1 1/2 tbsp - hazelnuts, finely crushed
4 pieces - leibniz whole wheat biscuits ( or any other biscuits), roughly broken
2 handfuls of mini marshmallows

Method
  1. Add honey, powdered milk, hazelnuts to the melted chocolate and mix well.
  2. Add the biscuits and marshmallows to the chocolate mixture and mix lightly.
  3. Spoon the mixture in the greased moulds/bowls and let it chill in the refrigerator for approx 2 hrs.
  4. I served the set chocolate in paper cups to make them look more inviting :-)
Serves 2


Hope you like this chocolate delight as much as we did!


Enjoy!

Grilled Vegetables


Ingredients

1 - carrot, scraped and chopped
1 - zucchini, chopped
1 - eggplant medium size, chopped
2 - potatoes, chopped
1 - tomato, chopped
2 - green chillies, finely chopped (more or less)
2 1/2 tbsp - ginger, finely chopped
1 - red pepper small, deseeded and chopped
1 - onion, chopped
1/4 cup - brocolli
4 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
1 1/2 tsp - dried italian herbs (more or less)
1/8 tsp - citric acid
a generous sprinkling of olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
100 grams - cheddar cheese, grated
50 grams - parmesan cheese, grated

Method
  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degree C.
  2. Mix together the cut vegetables, olive oil and the spices in a baking dish. Sprinkle the cheese on the top.
  3. Place the baking tray in the center of the oven and bake for approx 20 minutes. Toss them a couple of times in between. 
  4. Serve hot.


The colours are a treat for the eyes and add to the appeal of the dish...as the Germans say "Das Auge isst mit" - the eyes eat also, loosely translated :-) 

Baby Peppers with Pesto Noodles


Ingredients

3 - baby peppers, washed, dried and cut into halves
1 tbsp - olive oil
1/4 tsp - dried italian herbs
1/4 tsp - black pepper powder
salt to taste

For the Filling

1/3 cup - mini noodles, boiled
1 tbsp - cashew and walnuts, roughly broken
2 1/2 tbsp - basil pesto
25 gram - feta cheese, crumbled

Method
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degree C. Place the baby peppers in a baking tray, sprinkle the oil, herbs, salt and pepper on it and place the tray in the preheated oven and bake until almost done (approx 25  minutes)
  2. Mix the ingredients of the filling in a bowl and keep aside.
  3. Remove the peppers from the oven, add the filling and return the baking tray back in the oven and bake for 5 minutes.
  4. Serve hot. 


Enjoy!

Caramelised Cherry Rice

To brighten up our mood and to bring some colour to the weekend, I decided to make this Caramelised Cherry Rice. Its a fruity take somewhere between on the very traditional Indian "kheer" and the German "Milchreis" with a few calories less. And, a good way to use leftover rice too :-)



The fruit stalls are currently overflowing with cherries and strawberries now. I love the bright colours and these are two of my very favourite fruits and I never get enough of them. A strawberry rich recipe follows soon...


Ingredients

1/3 cup - low fat milk
1 cup - boiled rice
3 tbsp - condensed milk, sweetened
1/4 tsp - cardamom powder
2 tbsp - brown sugar (to sprinkle)
sugar if required

For the Compote

1 cup - cherries, pitted 
1 tbsp - vanilla sugar (more or less)

Method

For the Compote
  1. Place the cherries and the vanilla sugar in a pan and cook on a medium heat, stirring continously until the cherry softens. Let it cool.



For the rice
  1. Place the rice, milk, condensed milk and cardamom powder in a pan and cook until the milk evaporates. Let it cool.
  2. Add the cherries in a serving bowl/remekins/glass, add the rice and let it chill in the refrigerator for an hour.
  3. Sprinkle the brown sugar on the top of the rice and spread evenly.
  4. Using a torch, melt the sugar and form a crispy top and serve.
  5. If you dont have a torch then place the ramekins in a preheated oven until the sugar  melts. 

Strawberry Ginger Crepes


I love strawberries in any form and anything that contains strawberries as well. A couple of times a year we go picking fresh strawberries - and then we practically eat, drink and sleep strawberries. Well, if the weather remains so, we should do it in the next couple of weeks or so, and then I should have more strawberry recipes for you. 



The inspiration for this recipe comes from Soma's (of ecurry) Crêpe recipe here.

Ingredients

1/2 cup - all purpose flour
1/8 tsp - salt
1/4 tsp - sugar
1/8 tsp - dried ginger powder (saunth)
1 tbsp - sunflower oil
1 tbsp - low fat yogurt
2/3 milk - low fat milk

For the filling

7-8 pieces - strawberries, sliced
1 tsp - strawberry marmalade
1/4 tsp - lemon rind
1 tsp - crystallised ginger, chopped
1 1/2 tsp - sugar (more or less)
1/3 cup - water

To decorate

castor sugar to dust 
caramelised lemon slice ( add 1 tsp sugar in a pan and let it melt, add the lemon slices and cook on both sides for half a minute per side.) (optional)

Method

For the filling
  1. Add all the ingredients of the filling (except strawberries) in a pan and cook for 3-4 minutes on a medium heat.
  2. Add the sliced strawberries and cook for half a minute and remove from the heat.
For the Crêpes
  1. Mix the flour, salt, ginger powder and sugar in a bowl and in an another bowl, mix together the yogurt, milk and oil.
  2. Add the liquid mix to the flour mixture and beat well until the batter is smooth.
  3. Cover the jar with a cling-film and place it in the refrigerator for half an hour.
  4. Heat a pan and grease it slightly. Pour approx 2 1/2 tbsp of the batter and swirl until the pan is evenly coated with the batter.
  5. Cook the crêpe on a medium heat until the bottom is slightly brown. Gently flip over and cook again for a minute.
  6. Transfer the crêpe on the plate. Fold and top or stuff the crêpes with the filling.
  7. Dust the castor sugar and serve immediately. 
Makes  3


These crêpes were absolutely devoured by us and disappeared in minutes.

Rose Drink


Ingredients

150 grams - rose petal spread (gulkand) for more details see here
1 litre - water
250 ml - sparkling water
sugar if required

Method
  1. Mix well the gulkand and the water in a jar. Let it chill in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours. Mix the liquid once again and strain with the help of a sieve. 
  2. Fill 3/4 th of the glass with gulkand water and then pour some sparkling water into the glass.
  3. Serve immediately. 
Sparkling water is optional. The drink tastes good without the sparkling water as well. If you want a low sweet drink, add a half glass gulkand water and half glass sparkling water.

Serves  





Not only does this drink look good and taste good, it is also very healthy for the tummy during summer.

Blueberry Quark Ice Cream

Am gonna try out something similar with other berry sorts, maybe even a mix of different types of berries. 


Ingredients

1/3 cup - blueberries
4 tbsp - brown sugar (more or less)
130 gram - quark (i used lean quark)
1/2 cup - cream
1/4 tsp - lemon rind
mint leaves to garnish

Method


  1. Place the blueberries and sugar in a pan and cook on a medium heat, stirring continuosly, until the fruit is soft. Add the lemon rind and mix well. Let the cooked fruit cool completely.
  2. Place the quark and cream in a food processor and process till smooth. 
  3. Add the blueberries and process again.
  4. Transfer to a plastic container, cover and freeze till half set.
  5. Place the half set ice cream in the food processor and process again. Transfer to the plastic container and freeze again till half set. Repeat one for time. 
  6. After the third time, let it set completely.
  7. Remove from the freezer 5 minutes before serving. Garnish with mint leaves.
Serves 4




I fell in love with the colour of this icecream ... Don't you find this colour pretty? 


It not only looked good but tasted great too. A great way to enjoy a hot summer day :)

Apple Blueberry Crumble


Ingredients

1 - apple, peeled and cut into small pieces
1/3 cup - blueberries
1/8 tsp - lemon rind
1 tbsp - honey (more or less)
a pinch of cinnamon powder

For the topping

1 tbsp - whole wheat flour
2 tbsp - instant oats
1/2 tbsp - melted butter
1 tbsp - muscovado sugar (more or less)
1/2 tbsp - almond slivers

Method
  1. Cook the apple, blueberries, lemon rind, honey and cinnamon powder in a pan on a medium heat until  the fruits are slightly soft. Do not overcook. 
  2. Mix all the ingredients of the topping in a bowl.
  3. Place the cooked fruits in a bowl/ramekins. Spoon the topping over it and spread evenly.
  4. Preheat the oven to 170 degree C.
  5. Place the ramekins in the center of the preheated oven and bake until the top is golden brown. Serve. 
Serve 2

We had it without any cream or icecream, but feel free to indulge! Enjoy this bowl of deliciousness.




Friday, 22 July 2011

Rava Idli with Sambar

Unfortunately, the summer is turning out to be, in spite of all global warming claims to the contrary, a damp and cold one in Germany. Rains, floods and temperatures hovering around 12 degrees C on bad days are not really the stuff summer is made of. Today was an exception in that the sun shone for a major part of the day and the mercury levels went up....but tomorrow the rains are forecasted to come again.

So heres something warm and spicy to heat things up a bit...This one is especially for my brother, who loves Idlis. He celebrated his birthday last week - I wanted to post this recipe last week, but was unfortunately away. 





Semolina/Rava Idli 

Ingredients

1 cup - semolina (rava)
1 tbsp - gram flour (besan)
1/4 tsp - salt
3/4 tsp -  eno fruit salt
1 cup - buttermilk (more or less)
oil to grease the idli moulds

Method
  1. In a bowl, mix together the semolina, gram flour, salt and buttermilk. Add the fruit salt and mix vigourously for a minute. (The consistency of the batter should be a little thick)
  2. Pour spoonful of batter into the greased moulds and place them in the steamer. Steam for about 7-8 minutes (the time may vary depending upon the idli maker)
Makes 8 idlis


Sambar

Ingredients

3/4 cup - split pigeon pea (toor daal) 
to be pressure cooked (upto 4 whistles) with 1 1/2 cup of water, a pinch of turmeric powder, a generous pinch of red chilli powder and a few drops of ghee (clarified butter) 

1 - onion, medium size, chopped
1/4 cup - yellow pepper, chopped
1/4 cup - cucumber, chopped
1 - tomato, chopped
1 - green chilli, chopped
1 tbsp - tamarind pulp (more or less)
1 1/4 tbsp - sambar masala
1/2 tsp - sugar
1 tbsp - dessicated coconut
1/4 tsp - turmeric powder
1/2 cup - water (more or less)
salt to taste
coriander leaves to garnish

For the tempering

1 1/2 tbsp - sunflower oil
1/4 tsp - cumin seeds
1/4 tsp - mustard seeds
1/8 tsp - fenugreek seeds
1/4 tsp - asafoetida (hing)
6-8 - curry leaves

Method
  1. Heat oil in a pan, add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, curry leaves and asafoetida and fry until the seeds start to splutter.
  2. Add the chopped green chillies, onions and yellow pepper and saute until soft. Add the tomatoes and cook again for a couple of minutes. 
  3. Add the turmeric powder, sambar powder and dessicated coconut and cook for a minute. Add the tamarind pulp and salt and cook again for a minute.
  4. Add the boiled daal and water and simmer for 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionaly. Add the sugar and stir for a minute.
  5. Garnish it with coriander leaves and serve hot. 


You can have the idlis as a starter or a snack or a whole meal. We usually eat it as a wholemeal.


Enjoy!

Cheesy Veggi Rice

There was a time when we hardly cared about each other, we were both so busy in our own worlds that we never knew the importance of each other. After my marriage, after shifting to Munich, the bond started growing, guess the distance was the reason...

While we were talking on the phone this weekend, we did discuss food and then she came up with this wonderful recipe (with a little bit of improvisation from my side!)






Ingredients

1 cup - brown rice, boiled with a cube of Maggi vegetable stock
1/3 cup - babycorn, boiled and chopped
1/3 cup - onion, chopped
1/2 cup - yellow and red pepper, chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 inch piece - ginger, chopped
6 - low fat cheese slice
salt to taste
red chilli powder (optional)

1 tbsp + 1/2 tsp - olive oil

To be ground together in a coarse paste


2 - tomato medium size
1 - green chilli (adjust according to your taste)

Method

  1. Saute the onions, peppers, babycorn, garlic and ginger in 1 tbsp of olive oil. Keep aside.
  2. In another pan, saute the paste in 1/2 tsp of oil for 5-6 minutes.
  3. Add the cooked vegetables to the paste and cook further for a couple of minutes. Add the salt and cook again for a minute.
  4. Add the boiled rice to the paste and mix well.
  5. Preheat the oven to 200 degree C.
  6. In a baking dish, add the rice and top it with a cheese slice. Repeat twice with cheese slice on the top. 
  7. Place the dish in the center of the preheated oven and bake until the cheese is slightly brown. 
  8. Serve hot.

We loved this cheesy vegetable rice and had it with some salad and strawberry juice, which made a complete satisfying meal.


Enjoy!

Crunchy Chocolate Truffles

I noticed that I had not posted any chocolate recipes lately. So here is something i cooked up rather spontaneously...  





I did lick away quite a bit of this chocolaty goodness while preparing the recipe, so it could be that the number of truffles you get would be a little more than what I got ;-)

A quick, crunchy and mainly chocolaty satisfaction! Perfect for the taste buds and not too bad for the waistline. The only disadvantage is, you can't store it in the fridge because it will become stone hard but that is a theoretical case anyway - only if you have any left!





Ingredients


100 grams - chocolate 60%, melted
4 - ladyfinger biscuits , crushed to the consistency of semolina
1 tbsp - honey 
unsweetened cocoa powder for rolling the truffles


Method
  1. In a bowl, place the honey, finely crushed ladyfinger biscuits and the melted chocolate and mix well.
  2. Cover the bowl with a plastic wrap and chill for 20 minutes.
  3. Shape into small balls by rolling between the plams of your hands. Roll the truffles in cocoa powder until well coated. Serve.
Makes- 10 truffles




Enjoy!

Papaya Salad and Rosti



Ingredients


For the Rösti


4 -  medium size potatoes, peeled and grated
1 - onion medium size, finely chopped
1/4 cup - bread crumbs (more or less)
2 inch piece - ginger, grated
1/4 tsp -pepper powder (more or less)
salt to taste
olive oil to pan fry


For the Papaya Salad 


2 cups - raw papaya,peeled and grated
2 - green chilli, slit through the middle, seeds removed
1/2 of a medium size red chilli, cut into rounds
1 tsp - sunflower oil
1/4 tsp - mustard seeds
1/4 tsp - turmeric powder (haldi)
salt to taste


Method

  1. Heat oil in a pan, add the mustard seeds, when they begin to splutter, add the chillies and turmeric powder. Add the grated papaya and salt and cook for a couple of minutes and keep it aside.
  2. Squeeze out the excess water from the grated potatoes. 
  3. Place the grated potatoes, onions, bread crumbs, ginger, pepper powder and salt in a bowl and mix well.
  4. Take a little portion of the potato mixture, make a ball and gently flatten it.
  5. Sprinkle a few drops of oil on a non stick pan and pan fry the rösti on a low flame till both the sides are evenly golden. 
  6. Place the rosti on a serving dish, top it with the papya salad, garnish it with the chillies and serve. 





The chillies turned out to be too hot for me, so my hubby had my portion of chillies too! :-)


Gooey Chocolaty Microwave Cup Cake

Chocolate cake! hmmm... but that would take at least half an hour, thought my mind. I should continue reading the book, thought my mind again... Which I really tried with all my concentration but, " I was lost in that world of chocolate cakes" . Finally, I got up, quickly consulted my dear friend, "Google" and ta da da... got this recipe for this microwave cupcake, from here, which I improvised according to the ingredients available.

When I saw the cake rise in the microwave, my heart did a little jig and dance but then my jaws dropped when I saw it sinking. Apprehensively, I took quick photos, and, had the first bite and, a big smile appeared on my face. The cake was warm, soft, gooey and most important chocolaty...mmmm. So what if it sank, it tasted just awesome and satisfied my craving. So here you go with the recipe.





And - the best part was - The cake was ready in just 2 minutes!


Ingredients

2 tbsp - whole wheat flour
2 tbsp - muscovado sugar 
1 1/2 tbsp - cocoa powder (more or less)
2 tbsp - apple juice
2 tbsp - sunflower oil
1 tsp heaped - mascarpone
1/4 tsp - baking powder
1/4 tsp - coffee powder
a pinch of salt
handful of choco chips

Method
  1. Mix together all the dry ingredients in a cup. 
  2. Add the liquid ingredients one by one and mix well. (make sure to scrape the corners well)
  3. Place the cup in the microwave, on high, for approx 2 minutes. (time may vary a little depending upon the power of microwave)








I had it without any topping but you may have it with cream or ice-cream. It would taste as great :-)



Crispy Cashew Coated Carrot-Pea Patties


These patties have been on my mind ever since, and last week they made it to our platter, too. I obviously improvised (well, some habits are hard to die) - I mixed some carrots too in there, and the coating was done with coarsely crushed cashews rather than really finely crushed ones. And, they not only looked elegant but also tasted great.



I must mention that I used canned peas since fresh ones aren't available at this time of the year. But, next time around I shall make these with fresh peas :-)


Ingredients


1/3 cup - carrots, boiled and chopped
1/2 cup - peas
1 inch piece - ginger, finely chopped
1 tbsp - coriander leaves, chopped
1/4 tsp - garam masala
1/4 tsp - red chilli powder (more or less)
salt to taste
12-15 pieces - cashew, coarsely crushed, for coating the patties


For the marinade


1 tsp - all purpose flour (maida)
2 tbsp - water
1/4 tsp - sunflower oil
a pinch of salt
a pinch of garam masala


Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degree C and line a baking tray.
  2. Mash together the carrots, peas and ginger in a bowl. Add the coriander leaves, salt, garam masala and chilli powder and mix well.
  3. Divide the mixture into 4 parts and make rounds and flatten them slightly.
  4. Mix all the ingredients of the marinade in a bowl.
  5. Brush the patties with the marinade and roll them with the crushed cashews.
  6. Place the patties on the lined baking tray and place the tray in the center of the oven. Bake until the cashews turn a little brown.
  7. Serve hot with a dip/chutney of your choice.
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