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Thursday, December 17, 2015

Neyyappam/ Deep Fried Rice Pancake Fritters

Neyyappam is a traditional Kerala snack which is golden brown deep fried delicacy made with rice and jaggery as the main ingredients. These are sweet rice pancake fritters made in pure ghee.


Lot of memories are associated with this snack. When we were in Kerala during vacations,my grandmother used to make lots of snacks like unniappam, neyyappam, cut cake, bonda and so on. Each one of them were filled with a burst of flavors and also with lot of love, but among all, I love these golden fried neyyappam.


There are different variations in making these neyyappam, I love this version. These can be stored in airtight containers for about a week. These neyyappam consists of four stages, soaking , grinding, fermenting and frying. If the batter is watery then it will drink too much of oil so adjust accordingly.
Ingredients:
  1. Rice- 2 Cups
  2. Melted Jaggery- 1 ½ Cups
  3. Cumin Seeds- 1 tsp
  4. Water- as required
  5. Ghee- 2 tbsp+ 1 tbsp
  6. Maida- 2 tbsp
  7. Coconut Pieces- a handful
  8. Sesame Seeds- 2 tbsp
Method:

  1. Heat a small pan with 1 tbsp of ghee and fry the coconut pieces to golden brown in colour. Keep this aside.
  2. Wash and soak the rice for about 2 hours and grind it to a thick paste using little water.
  3. Transfer this to a bowl. Add the melted jaggery  (add this according to your taste), cumin seeds, roasted sesame seeds, maida, 2 tbsp ghee and fried coconut pieces. Mix with water to form a dosa batter.
  4. Set this aside for 4- 5 hours or overnight to ferment. When it gets fermented, heat oil in a thick bottomed pan and pour a spoonful of batter into the hot oil.
  5. Fry both the sides to golden brown colour. Repeat the process till all the batter gets finished.Enjoy hot golden fried neyyappam.




Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Homemade Schezwan Sauce

Schezwan sauce is a spicy, red, tasty and light tangy flavored, which can be used in almost all the dishes that we love to have a twist in taste. This sauce has become a part of our daily menu. I like to call this a magical sauce, as this can be used while making dosa, noodles, as a spread on sandwich and so in. In near future you can see many dishes with this magical sauce in my blog.




We can make this sauce and refrigerate for many days. If we prepare this sauce using Kashmiri chillies, we will get the perfect red color and it won't be spicy. Kids will love this. In the last add little bit of sugar to cut the pungent flavor of chillies. Just try this out and you will love it…


Ingredients:
  1. Kashmiri Red Chillies- 10- 15 nos
  2. Chopped Garlic- 3 tbsp
  3. Chopped Ginger- 1 tbsp
  4. Pepper Powder- 1 tsp
  5. Soy sauce- ½ tbsp
  6. Vinegar- 1 tbsp
  7. Salt- as required
  8. Water- ¼ cup
  9. Sugar- ½ tbsp
  10. Oil- 2 tbsps
Method:

  1. Soak the red chillies in water for about an hour and grind this to a nice paste.
  2. Heat a wok, add oil. When it is hot add the chopped ginger and garlic.
  3. Sauté for about a minute, now add the ground chilli paste. Sauté well.
  4. In this add the  pepper powder, soy sauce and salt. Add vinegar and required amount of water. At this point add sugar, mix and switch off the flame.




Monday, November 23, 2015

Apple Jilebi

Last week after seeing so many mouth watering pics of Diwali sweets in many blogs and  FB posts, I was like, I have to make something to satisfy my sweet tooth and so here I am, with an amazing post. First, I was not sure of what I wanted to prepare, but when I was scrolling through my fb post, I saw Pavithra of “dishes from my kitchen” uploading a pic of this lovely dish. As soon as I saw it, I decided that this will be my next post and here it is.


A perfect festive dish. Apple jilebis are fritters soaked in sugar syrup. The sweetness from outside and soft apple inside is a lovely combination. The consistency of the sugar syrup is that of gulab jamun. If you want you can add little bit of red colour to the syrup. Not only almonds, pistachios or saffron can also be sprinkled on top of these jilebis. Just try this out.



Ingredients:
  1. Apple- 2nos
  2. Maida- 1 cup+2 tbsp
  3. Cinnamon Powder- 2tsp
  4. Curd- ¼ cup
  5. Water- as required
For Sugar Syrup:
  1. Water- 1 ½ Cups
  2. Sugar- 1 Cup
  3. Cardamom Powder- 1 tsp
For Decoration:
  • Almonds (sliced)- few
Method:
For Sugar syrup:
  • Mix water,sugar and cardamom powder and keep this on medium flame. Stir well till all the sugar gets dissolved and when it becomes ½ thread consistency switch off the flame.

  1. Peel the skin of apples and scoop out the seeds using a sharp ended knife. Slice the apple into perfect rounds and keep this aside.
  2. Mix 2 tbsp of maida along with cinnamon powder and dust the sliced round pieces of apple.
  3. In a bowl mix together remaining maida, curd and required amount of water. Make sure that the batter should not be watery. It should be little thick.
  4. Heat oil for deep frying. Dip each dusted apple slices in the maida batter and slip slowly in hot oil. When they turn golden brown in colour, remove and dip them slowly into the prepared sugar syrup.
  5. When the pieces are completely coated in sugar syrup remove and enjoy these hot apple jilebis as it is or with rabdi or ice cream.




Sunday, November 8, 2015

Baklava- Celebrating 5 years of blogging…..


Hello friends… This month, my little space is turning 5. Time is flying.. Feels like it was a few days back that I decided to start blogging my experiments with food. It is all your love and support that got me here. A million thanks to all who took time to visit my blog, FB page, like it and comment on my recipes. And many more thanks to all my blogger friends who has been my inspiration and many of them who helped me by inviting to blogger’s meet, workshops, doing guest posts and so on.



I am also thankful to my husband and daughter for letting me spend time on these things and also for being the first critics of whatever I prepare.

I feel quite accomplished to have added so many recipes in the blog, especially because I did not know anything about cooking back in 2005 when I got married. All my cooking process was done over the phone with my mom and m-i-l and used to get a fat bill from BSNL and Airtel :-)

In these 5 yrs, lots of things happened in my life. Working as a kindergarten teacher, a much awaited trip to Europe, the birth of my cute bubbly son, a bunch of new friends etc etc …



To celebrate this amazing occasion, I thought I should be making an exotic sweet and zeroed in on Baklava, a Turkish sweet which is liked by all in my family. Baklava is Turkish dessert in which the layers of phyllo dough are stacked which are separated by butter, over which a walnut sugar mixture is spread and again layered with phyllo sheets that are baked to perfection, ending up with sugar syrup. After pouring the sugar syrup, this must be kept for few hours or overnight, so that the layers can absorb the sugar syrup. Just a bite into this amazingly delicious dessert and you will end up eating 4 to 5 pieces at a time though it is rich in calories.



When I was in Bangalore, I wanted to make this, but it was hard to find phyllo sheets and was not confident enough to prepare them at home. After I came to US, I searched around in the supermarkets and finally found it. First, I prepared these baklavas for my cutie pie’s birthday and they were super hit. So I prepared again for my blog’s birthday and I got some pics this time. Actually blog’s birthday is just an excuse for eating this calorie filled dessert. I can have these anytime of the day. Try these and let me know…

Ingredients:
  • Phyllo Pastry Sheet- 30 nos
For the filling:
  1. Walnuts- 2 cups
  2. Cinnamon Powder- ¼ tsp
  3. Powdered sugar- 4 tbsps
For sugar syrup:
  1. Sugar- 1 cup
  2. Water- 1 cup
  3. Vanilla extract/ Cinnamon Powder- 1 tsp
  4. Melted Butter- ¾ cup
Method:

  1. Coarsely grind the walnuts in a mixer. In a bowl, mix together the powdered walnuts, cinnamon powder and powdered sugar. Keep this aside.
  2. Meanwhile add sugar, water and vanilla extract in a bowl. Boil this till the sugar is well dissolved.
  3. Unwrap the pastry sheets. Brush 10 sheets with butter on both sides and lay them one on the other inside a buttered rectangular baking tray.
  4. Spread the walnut mixture evenly on the buttered sheets.
  5. Over these layer 10 more buttered phyllo sheets one after the other and then spread the walnut mixture over this.
  6. At last layer the remaining 10 sheet with butter on both the sides. Cut this into diamond shape with a sharp knife.
  7. Bake this in pre heated oven of 170 degrees C for about 45- 50 minutes. Check in between, when it turns light golden brown and crisp, take it out of the oven.
  8. Let it sit for about 10 minutes and pour the prepared sugar syrup completely on the prepared baklavas. Make sure that the sugar syrup is poured evenly in all the corners.
  9. Do not cover this and let it sit untouched for about an hour and so before digging into the yummiest dessert ever.







Thursday, October 29, 2015

Vada Pav- An amazing street food

This is a  lip smacking Indian street snack which is available almost in all the stalls and restaurants in India. In this recipe, boiled and mashed potatoes are spiced, coated in gram flour batter and then deep fried. The fritter is served inside a butter toasted buns along with dry garlic chutney/ coriander chutney/ tamarind chutney.



Every day by evening, my mind will be thinking of making something healthy for my husband and daughter. With the craving for a spicy and a tangy chaat, I ended up with this not so healthy chaat as it’s not possible to find any chaat here. I love the dry garlic chutney a lot. And once when I learned how to make it, I made a lot and stored in refrigerator, and that is what I am using as a spread on bread and rotis…



Ingredients:
  • Pav- 8 nos
For the filling:
  1. Boiled Potatoes- wnos
  2. Green Chillies- 3 nos
  3. Ginger and Garlic Paste- 1 tbsp
  4. Oil- 1 tbsp
  5. Mustard Seeds- 1 tsp
  6. Asafoetida- ½  tsp
  7. Turmeric Powder- 1 tsp
  8. Salt- as required
  9. Besan- ½ Cup
  10. Turmeric Powder- 1 tsp
  11. Salt- as required
  12. Oil- for deep frying
Method:
  1. Grind the green chillies and ginger, garlic paste to a fine paste.
  2. Heat oil, splutter the mustard seeds and add asafoetida powder. Add the boiled and mashed potatoes.
  3. In the above add the green chillies, ginger and garlic paste. Mix well. Add the turmeric powder and required amount of salt.
  4. Divide this into 8 equal proportions and keep this aside.
  5. Heat oil for frying in a kadai.
  6. Combine the besan, turmeric powder, salt with required amount of water. It should be thick with dropping consistency.
  7. Dip each of the potato balls in the above besan mixture and coat well. Drop these in hot oil and fry till golden brown. Drain on absorbent paper.
For the Dry Garlic Chutney:
  1. Garlic cloves (crushed)- 4 tbsp
  2. Dry Coconut grated- 4 tbsp
  3. Red Chilli Powder- 2 tbsp
  4. Oil- 1 tbsp
Method:
  1. Heat oil, fry the garlic for about 2 minutes. Add the dried coconut powder and stir well.
  2. Switch of the flame, add the red chilli powder and salt.
  3. When it is cooled down, grind to a fine powder. Keep this aside.

Assembling the vada pav:

  1. Slice each pav into half and spread some garlic chutney inside and place one vada in each pav.
  2. Complete the process with remaining and serve along with Salted green chillies and Tomato ketchup.




Saturday, October 17, 2015

Nutella Cookies

Those who love chocolate will definitely love Nutella. Me and my daughter are huge fans of Nutella. Anything made out of Nutella is to die for. Since past few days, my daughter has been asking for cookies and as I bought two big bottles of Nutella recently, I thought of baking cookies using them.



I have many different varieties of cookie recipes using Nutella, but this recipe got my attention as it required only 4 ingredients which were easily available in kitchen. These cookies were made within minutes and they have a chewy texture. These spread very well so give a nice gap between the cookies while baking. I have baked exactly for 8 minutes and they all vanished the next day. Kids will love this amazing cookies. Just try this out and see the magic.



Adapted From Kirbie cravings
Ingredients:
  1. Nutella- 1 Cup
  2. Maida- ½ Cup
  3. Baking Powder- 1 tsp
  4. Egg- 1 no
Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 Degrees C. Grease a baking tray and keep it ready.
  2. Meanwhile mix all the ingredients one by one in a bowl using a wooden spoon until smooth without any lumps.
  3. Shape into round balls and flatten them on the prepared tray giving a nice gap between the cookies or else they may spread and stick to each other.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for about 8-10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack and enjoy.




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