Thursday, January 5, 2017

Dry Fruit Ladoos

These quick ladoo's are really good during merciless winters. The kids love those too. They are really easy to make and you can easily substitute the ingredients with the ones that are available.



Ingredients:
1 Cup Jaggery - grated or coarsely chopped
1/4 Cup - powder of edible gum
1/2 Cup - Coconut powder
1/2 Cup - Almod powder
1/4 Cup - Walnut powder
1 Tbsp Ginger powder
1 Tbsp - Poppy seeds powder
1/2 Cup - Ghee (melted butter)

Method:
1. Heat 3 Tbsp ghee and add gum powder to it. Let it all puff up and make sure it does not burn. Remove from flame and set aside.
2. Heat 2 Tbsp ghee and melt the jaggery keeping medium flame.
3. Turn of the flame when all the jaggery melts.
4. Add the puffed gum and rest of the ingredients to it.
5. Quickly roll the ladoos. If the mixture is dry, add some ghee to be able to make the ladoos.
6. They are ready to be served. Keep in an air-tight container.

Notes:

  • I had all the powders ready, so the preparation time was very less. 
  • You can adjust the amount of jaggery and ghee as per your taste. If you find it too sweet, take less jaggery, you might have to add more ghee for binding.
  • You can modify the recipe to add cashews, sesame seeds, flaxseed powder as per your liking. 



Saturday, December 24, 2016

Wheat Oats Almond Cookies

Celebrate Christmas with these easy, healthy and yummy cookies!




















Ingredients:
  • 1 Cup wheat flour
  • 1/3 Cup Oats Coarsely crushed
  • 1/2 Cup Butter 
  • 6 Tbsp Castor Sugar
  • 3 Tbsp Almond flakes
  • 1/2 Tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 Tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla Essence
  • A pinch of Salt (optional)


Method:

  • Bring the butter to room temperature.
  • Mix butter and sugar well in a bowl. 
  • In another bowl, mix flour, oats, soda, baking powder, salt.
  • Add this to the butter and sugar mixture.
  • Add almonds and vanilla extract. 
  • Mix everything together gently.
  • Take a small portion of the mixture and shape using your palms.
  • You will be able to make around 25 cookies from this mixture.
  • Preheat oven to 350 F, place parchment paper in baking trays.
  • Put all cookies in the baking trays.
  • Bake them for 15-17 minutes.
  • Take out of oven and place on wire rack to cool down.






















Cookies are ready to serve, keep left-over cookies in an airtight container.




Monday, November 21, 2016

Zucchini Cheese Bites

Serve these awesome bites on a rainy winter afternoon as a tea-time-snack or as a starter for dinner. Most of the ingredients are available at home, or you can easily replace a few of them with something else.






Ingredients:

  • 1 Zucchini
  • 1 Boiled Potato
  • 10-12 Spinach leaves
  • 2 Big spoons rice flour
  • 1/2 tsp. Chaat masala
  • 1 tsp Red Chili Powder or 2 green chilies finely chopped
  • 1/2 inch ginger
  • 3-4 Garlic Cloves
  • Salt as per taste
  • 2 tsp oil
  • Cheese cubes - 1 cm in size


Method

  • Grate zucchini, chop spinach leaves. 
  • Take it in a bowl. Add to it mashed potato, rice flour and all seasonings.
  • Take a spoonful of mixture in your palm. 
  • Shape it like a bowl and put a cheese cube in the center.
  • Enclose the remaining mixture to make it round.
  • Put appe pan on medium flame, add few drops of oil.
  • Keep the baals in it for 2-3 minutes. 
  • Turn all the balls when they are golden-brown in color.
  • Serve hot with ketch-up.





Sunday, January 1, 2012

Paneer Stuffed Peppers

This is a delicate, rich dish and beautifully contrasts with a spicy dish such as chhole. You can modify the recipe as per your taste and add/ drop ingredients depending on the availability.



Ingredients

  • 15 Colored mini-peppers
  • 2 tsp oil
  • 1 tsp. chopped coriander
For stuffing
  • 8 oz. paneer (cottage cheese)
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 tsp. red chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp. garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp. punjabi masala
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp white powder
  • 2 tsp almond, walnut powder (optional)


Method
  • Take tomato in a mixie and make its purée
  • Grate about 1 tsp of paneer and keep aside to use for garnishing.
  • In a mixing bowl, crumble the remaining paneer. Add to it tomato purée and the remaining ingredients for stuffing.
  • In a plate take the peppers. Using a sharp knife, make an incision in the peppers, starting from the top and stopping just before the tail. Do not cut all the way through, it has to be one whole piece.
  • Take one pepper at a time. Gently pry open the pepper at the slit with one hand. With the other hand, gently stuff the paneer mixture we prepared earlier.
  • Repeat for all the peppers.
  • In a large, shallow pan, heat the oil. Once the oil heats, put all the peppers, one at a time in a single layer. You can sprinkle little water on the pan so that the peppers get cooked with the steam.
  • Place the lid. Cook on low-medium heat for about 7 minutes or till the bottom sides of the peppers are cooked.
  • Turn all the pepper so the the uncooked side is at the bottom. Spread the remaining paneer stuffing over the peppers. Place the lid again and cook for another 5 minutes.
  • Once the peppers are cooked, arrange them in a serving dish or bowl. Garnish with corinader leaves and grated paneer. Server hot with bread.

White Powder

Just as the punjabi masala this name comes from the only cooking class I took. Some punjabi dishes are cooked in white gravy. It's good to have this powder handy so that we don't spend too much time in doing everything from scratch.
Also, every year for lakshmi pujan, we get sali lahya (puffed paddy rice). Those do not taste great as is, but they are highly nutritious and I prefer to consume them in some form at least. I use those in this recipe. If you use makhane (euryale ferox seeds) for the pooja, you can add those too. You can also add dried cantaloupe seeds.

So here goes the recipe.

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup puffed paddy rice
  • 1 tsp poppy seeds
  • 2 tsp. sesame seeds
  • 8-10 cashews


Method

Take all the ingredients and roast and low-medium flame for 5 minutes. Let it cool for another 5 minutes. Grind to a fine powder in a mixie. You can store this powder and use in various recipes that are made in white gravy.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Til (sesame) Chikki



Today is makar sankrant, so I decided to make til chikki. Til chikki is very easy to prepare and great in taste.



Ingredients:
  • 4 tbsp natural or unpolished sesame seeds (til)
  • 4 tbsp sugar. If you use jaggery cut it into small pieces with knife
  • 1 tbsp ghee or clarified butter

Method:
1. Roast sesame seeds on medium flame till it is golden brown in color. Keep it aside and allow it to cool.
2. Grease aluminum foil with ghee.
3. Take ghee in non-stick pan and switch on flame on medium flame till it melts.
4. Add sugar to the melted ghee and stir continuously until the sugar melts.
5. Now put on very low flame and add sesame seeds. Mix well with the melted sugar.
6. Stir it well and then pour mixture on aluminum foil.
7. Grease rolling pin with ghee and then use it roll the mixture. Roll till thin layer of chikki is formed.
8. Allow it to cool for a few minutes, and the chikki is ready.
9. You can make more chikkis and store in an air-tight container so that it does not loose its crispness.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Apple Pie

Last weekend was Thanksgiving weekend, so I decided to make an apple pie. I had never tasted a pie until a friend got one for thanksgiving last year. I loved it, and it didn't seem much difficult to make! Later I got the frozen pie crusts from Trader Joe's and had made the apple pie once. It was delicious, especially when it was freshly baked, but after a couple of days I did not enjoy it that much. The reason was the base was not baked as nicely as the rest of the crust. So I did more research this time and the result was superb. In fact, this time the pie tasted better with more time!! Here I am sharing the recipe and few tips.





Ingredients

  • One 9" Pie crust
  • 5 Apples
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon Powder
  • 1/4 Tsp Nutmeg Powder
  • 3 Tbsp All-purpose flour
  • 3 Tsp butter
  • 1 Cup Brown Sugar

Method
  1. Thaw the frozen pie crust completely for about an hour.
  2. In the mean time, mix in 2 Tbsp sugar with the flour, and cut in butter until the mixture becomes crumbly.
  3. Peel, core and cut apples into thin slices.
  4. Arrange the pie crust in about 1-inch deep pie dish. Fit it properly inside the dish, and press the edge of the crust over the slanted surface of pie dish.
  5. Preheat the oven at 400 degrees F.
  6. Arrange the apple slices in the pie crust. Sprinkle remaining sugar, cinnamon powder and nutmeg powder over the apples.
  7. Spread the crumbs over this evenly.
  8. Put the pie dish in a bigger baking sheet and bake in the oven for 35 minutes.
  9. Check with a knife if the pie is done, or bake for few more minutes. Let it cool for one hour and serve.





Tips

  • The fruits and sugar make the base soggy. To bake the base properly, prick the base of the crust with a fork. Also, I baked the pie at 400F for first 20 minutes, and at 350 for next 20 minutes.
  • If you like sprinkle some sugar between layers of apple slices instead of adding all in the end.
  • The cinnamon & nutmeg powder give a fragrant aroma to the pie. Vary the quantity according to your taste. Also, add a pinch of cinnamon + nutmeg powder in the crumbs.
  • You could use white sugar in this recipe, but I tried it with brown sugar this time and I liked it more.