Friday, 28 February 2014

Malai Kofta

Malai Kofta needs no introduction as I think it is the most popular vegetarian dish from North India. Deep fried koftas made of paneer in a rich creamy gravy is very irresistible . This month we were challenged by  Nupur  with this yummy dish for SNC   a well known event started by Divya Pramil .

Making  this was a very wonderful experience and we all loved it. But since I made this dish on the day when we were fasting I had to omit the onions and garlic but still the dish was unbelievably tasty. Thanks Nupur for this wonderful challenge.







Recipe Source : www.ukrasoi.com

Ingredients :

For the Koftas :

100 gm ..................paneer ( cottage cheese)
2 to 3 ...................boiled potatoes
2 tbsp...................instant milk powder
2 tbsp..................corn flour
1 tbsp each .........cashews, raisins, grn chillies, coriander
salt
oil for deep frying

For the Gravy :

5 to 6 .....................tomatoes ( pureed )
1 tbsp......................ginger paste
1 tsp.......................chilly powder
1/2 tsp...................turmeric powder
1 tsp......................dhana jeera powder
2 tbsp each............instant milk powder, cashews, poppy seeds
2 tbsp...................thick fresh cream
1/2 tsp...................jeera
2 .........................bay leaves
fistful...................chopped coriander
1 cup or more ....milk
4 tbsp................pure ghee
salt


Method for Koftas :


Peel the boiled potatoes and mash them well.

Add paneer , salt, milk powder, potato mash and cornflour .

Mix properly and make lemon sized balls.

Mix separately cashew pieces, raisings, finely chopped green chillies and coriander.

Make a dent in the paneer ball and fill 1/4 tsp of cashew mixture in it.

Close the ball from all sides and give it a little elongated shape.

Heat oil in a pan and deep fry the koftas till golden in colour.






Method for Gravy :

Heat ghee in a pan and add jeera and bay leaves.

Then add tomato puree and stir fry till the water evaporates and raw smell disappears.

Ghee will start separating from the puree.

Add ginger paste  and all dry masala powder and stir fry for 2 to 3 minutes.

Grind a paste of poppy seeds, cashews and instant milk powder.

Add this to the pan along with 1 cup milk and cook till the gravy boils and thickens.

You can further dilute the gravy with milk if it is too thick.

While serving boil the gravy add fresh cream, chopped coriander and carefully add the fried koftas.

Give just one boil and serve hot with parathas or naans.

Do not boil the gravy again and again or the koftas will bread as they are very soft.







Thursday, 27 February 2014

Garlic Cheese Pull Apart Bread

Since last few months I am a member of a wonderful baking group we-knead-to-bake  started by Aparna Balasubramaniam  . This month we were supposed to bake any bread from the last year's challenges and I chose this amazing pull apart bread which was the first challenge of this group when it started. 

This bread is a bit different i.e its not a roll but the square pieces of dough are cut and stacked one upon the other and then kept in a loaf tin and baked. This gives a very pleasing shape to the pull apart. I had been eyeing this bread since many months . 

Thanks a lot Aparna for giving us opportunity to choose the bread of our choice due to which I could make this lovely bread. Enjoyed it warm with butter and Gazpacho Soup for our dinner.





Ingredients :

1/2 cup .....................................lukewarm milk
1 tsp .........................................sugar
2 tsp...........................................dry active yeast
1 tsp.......................................salt
1 cup...................................wheat flour
2 cups ................................maida
2 tbsp.....................................soft butter
1 tsp......................................garlic paste
3/4 cup milk + 2 tbsp ..............milk

Filling :

2 tbsp .....................butter ( molten)
2 tbsp.....................finely chopped coriander
1 tsp......................chilly paste
1 tsp...................garlic paste
1/2 cup...............grated cheddar cheese



Method :

In a bowl mix sugar, milk and yeast and keep aside 10 minutes to rise.

In a mixer add 2 n 1/2 cup flour, salt , garlic paste and butter and mix very well for 2 to 3 minutes.

Now add to it the above yeast mixture and 3/4 cup milk .

Knead into a soft but non sticky dough .

Add 1 or 2 tbsp flour only if needed.

Plastic wrap the dough in a greased bowl and let it rise for 2 hours or till double.

Dust your kitchen platform with flour.

Now punch the dough and pat it into a large square shape of 12 by 12 inches.

Apply butter evenly on it and spread the filling evenly.

Press the filling lightly in the dough .

Now with a pizza cutter cut 6 long stripes.

Again cut these stripes horizontally in 6 parts.

Now you have 36 small squares.

Stack them over each other into 3 to 4 piles.

Grease a loaf tin and arrange these stacks as shown in the figure.

Brush the dough with butter and let it rise for 1 hour again.

Now brush it with milk and bake for 40 minutes in a preheated oven at 180 degrees.











Cocktail Canapes - For SYS

Parties and get togethers always form an important part of our social life. We love to give and take parties and a true party is incomplete without drinks and starters. This cocktail canape is one such easy starter which you will love to make for your party . It will hardly take 5 to 10 minutes to get this starter ready if you chop the fruits and veggies in advance.

The filling can vary as per your liking and you can even add some more veggies like carrot and peas if you want. Pineapple is a must as it gives the much needed tanginess to the canapes. These cheesy canapes taste very delcious . Tarts can be replaced with salty biscuits like monaco or crackers. In that case you don't need to bake them.

I am sending this entry for  sys-w-series-february an event by a dear friend  Viji   as my secret ingredient is pineapple.






Ingredients :

5 tbsp....................pinapple ( finely chopped )
5 tbsp.....................capsicum ( finely chopped )
5 tbsp.....................white sauce ( recipe here )
5 tbsp.................... grated cheddar cheese
15 to 20 ...............tart cases





Method :

Mix first three ingredients .

Fill each tart case with a tablespoon of the mixture.

Sprinkle some grated cheese on top.

Bake in an oven for 5 minutes at 180 degrees.

Top with chopped cherries.





Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Chocolate Crepes with Fresh Cream & Strawberries - For SFC


This fusion dessert was our this month's challenge for Sweet Fantasy Club an event started by a dear  friend Preeti Garg . These crepes tasted heavenly with whipped fresh cream and strawberries . Enjoyed them as a dessert after dinner last week and thoroughly loved them. The chocolaty crepes with tangy sour strawberries were a hit combo. But have them in moderation as they are very rich and heavy .






Ingredients :

1 cup ......................milk
3/4 cup.....................maida
3 tbsp.....................sugar
2 tbsp......................melted butter
1 tsp.......................vanilla
2 to 3 tbsp..............unsweetened cocoa
1 cup.......................chopped strawberries
1/2 cup....................freshly whipped cream




Method :

Mix all except strawberries and fresh cream  till smooth.

If the mixture is thick add water to dilute it a little.

Keep this batter in fridge for 2 hours.

Heat a non stick tawa and spread a spoonful of this batter.

Spread the batter in a round shape with the back of the spoon.

Cook till dry and flip the crepe and cook it on the other side too.

Remove the cooked crepe on the plate.

Mix strawberries and whipped cream.

Fill the crepe with strawberry cream.

Roll and serve.


Chocolate Orange Barfi - For SFC


I hardly know of a person who doesn't love chocolates . Chocolates are popular among kids and adults alike. Adding of rich cocoa flavor to any sweet or a dessert takes it to an altogether new level. This sinful chocolate barfee which is easy to make will also definitely satisfy your chocolate craving. 

 This barfee was suggested as the challenge for Sweet Fantasy Club an event started by a dear blogger friend Preeti Garg  . Since I already have posted the recipe of chocolate-walnut-fudge  which is very similar to the chocolate barfee I decided to add orange crush and dried and sweetened orange peels . The addition of orange flavor makes the barfee all the more irresistible. 

Do try this barfee when you  have less time in hand still want something yummy to indulge.

Thanks Preeti for this lovely sweet.





Ingredients :

1 small tin  ......................milkmaid
1 cup............................milk powder ( I used Nestle )
4 tbsp..............................unsweetened cocoa
2 tbsp ..........................orange crush
1 tbsp......................... dried sweet orange peels ( finely chopped )
4 tbsp.............................ghee


 Method :






In a bowl mix milk powder, ornage crush , chopped peels and ghee .

Add to it milkmaid and cocoa powder and mix well.

Heat ghee in a thick bottom kadhai and add the above mixture.

Keep on stirring continuously till the mixture thickens and starts leaving sides.

Spread this mixture on a greased tray and let it cool completely.

Cut into desired shapes and store.



Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Crunchy Seed Cookies

Made these crunchy nutty cookies for the valentines day. They are very healthy and nutritious as I have made them with whole wheat flour. The fennel seeds give these cookies a very unique flavor. Thanks Swathi for these lovely yummy cookies.





Adapted from Alice Medrich,


Ingredients :

1 tbsp....................white sesame
1 tbsp..................black sesame
1 tbsp................fennel seeds
2 tbsp..............sugar
1/3 cup ..........sugar
2 cups .............wheat flour
1 tsp................baking powder
1/2 tsp.............baking soda
1 ..................egg
3 tbsp..........butter
1 tsp............vanilla
salt





Method :

Mix both sesame, saunf and 2 tbsp sugar and keep in a plate.

Beat butter and 1/2 cup sugar till smooth and well blended.

Add egg , salt , vanilla and beat well.

Add baking powder and soda and beat again for a minute or two.

Now add the flour gradually and knead the cookie dough.

Knead as little as possible do not over knead.

Now flatten the dough on a flour to 1/4 inch thickness .

Cut into desired shapes with a cookie cutter.

Press one side of cut cookie in the mixture of sesame and sugar.





Place these cookes on a greased tray an inch apart from each other.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes at 180 degrees in a preheated oven.







Linking this to  baking-partners an event by a dear blogger friend Swathi







Saturday, 15 February 2014

Gaathiya - A Gujrati Farsan ( For ICC )

For  indian-cooking-challenge this month  Srivalli  suggested Gaathiya a very famous Gujarati Farsan a recipe which she got from one of her blogger friends Vaishali  .

As Gathiya was in my to do list since long I was very happy . I had tried making it earlier but never succeeded. Off course I never knew the secret of dry roasting the soda at that time. I think this is a very essential step and you just shouldn't skip this because the result was these soft crunchy melt in the mouth gathiyas.

 Also as I did not have a mould press for gathiya so used our normal chakali press to drop the gathiyas in hot oil . But it did not make any much difference . I just deep fried the long strips and then broke them into pieces. Nevertheless resulting snack was yummy.







Ingredients :

250 gm .......................gram flour ( besan )
1/23 tsp.......................ajwain ( owa )
1 tsp..........................cooking soda
50 gm ......................oil
salt
oil for deep frying




Method :

In a pan dry roast cooking soda for 2  to 3 mintues or till it is almost charred.

Let it cool down completely.

Now add maida, salt and ajwain and mix well .

Add 50 gm oil to it and mix well.

Gradually knead a dough adding water little at a time.

Dough should be semi soft and of the consistency of sev .

Just like a mold press for chakali or sev  we get mold press for gathiya .

Use that and press drop gathias in hot oil and deep fry till done.

In case gathia press in not available you can also use the chakli press which I have used.

Enjoy  these melt in the mouth gathiyas with a hot cup of tea.

Friday, 14 February 2014

Granola Bars


Since long I wanted to make these granola bars and when our this month's host Sharanya suggested these bars as one of the challenges for Home Bakers Challenge an event started by Priya Suresh   this month I just had to grab the opportunity. I skipped the egg given in the original recipe and also used jaggery instead of sugar . The jaggery gave a wonderful Indian flavor to the granola bars which we all loved.

Thanks a lot Priya and Sharanya for this healthy snack.






Ingredients :

3 cups .........................oats
1/2 cup ...................  dry black currants
1/2 cup.....................dates ( chopped )
1/2 cup....................mix nuts ( almonds, walnuts etc)
1/2 cup...................honey
1/2 cup ................jaggery ( used to make chikki )
1/2 cup.................home made butter ( loni )
1 tsp + 1 tsp .........ghee

Method :

Dry roast the oats for 5 to 8 minutes and keep aside.

Beat butter till soft and add all except oatss ,ghee and jaggery.

Mix well everything  and keep aside.





Heat 1 tsp ghee in a pan and add chikki jaggery with 2 tbsp water.

When the mixture boils and becomes frothy drop 1/2 tsp of this mixture in a bowl of cold water.





The mixture should immdiately harden when tried to shape it into a ball with your fingers.

Remove the mixture from fire and pour it on the above mixture.

Add oats to this and mix well .




Grease the tray with remaing ghee.

Mix everything very well and spread it evenly on a greased tray pressing firmly with fingers.

Bake it for 20 to 25 minutes in an oven at 180 degrees.

When cold cut into desired shapes.

You have your very own homemade healthy granola bars ready.




 Home Bakers Challenge


















Monday, 10 February 2014

Milky Fruity Cake


Everyone in my family loves mawa cakes or simple sponge cakes  rather than creamy pastries. During Christmas I has soaked some dry fruits in rum to make Plum cake and the remaining I kept the remaining  in fridge for future use and completely forgot about them. Recently while cleaning the fridge found these soaked dry fruits they had lovely aroma and immediately I craved for some rich fruity cake .

 So decided to make this simple cake . Since I did not have any mawa handy I just added instant milk powder and the results were amazing . You can add mawa for the actual mawa taste .  If you don't have rum simply use the dry fruits you have but if possible do use the soaked dry fruits as it gives a very rich yummy taste to the cake.







Ingredients :

1 n 1/2 cup .................maida ( all purpose flour )
1/2 cup......................very fine rawa ( semolina )
1 cup........................sugar
3/4 cup....................butter ( used homemade unsalted butter )
4 heaped tbsp.........milk powder ( used Nestle brand )
4 ............................eggs ( can be substituted by 1 cup paneer or tofu )
1/2 cup...................milk
1 cup...................dry fruits n nuts ( walnuts, cashews, dates, raisins, orange peels , tutty fruity )
1 tsp ......................baking powder
1/2 tsp...................mix fruit essence
1/2 tsp...................vanilla essence





Method :

In a mixer grind together maida, rawa, milk powder and baking powder .

This ensures uniform mixing baking powder and all other dry ingredients.

Now beat together butter, milk and sugar with a blender .

Gradually add eggs beating continuously.

Now add both essences and beat well.

Now add dry mixture of maida one spoon at a time and mix gently but well.

Lastly add half the dry fruits and mix genly.

Pour the batter in a greased tin and sprinkle remaining dry fruits on top.







Bake in a preheated oven at 180 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.









Linking this to potluck-party-cyber-style   @ Jagruti's Cooking Odyssey




Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Tofu Kabab


I usually make these kababs with paneer but today I decided to substituted paneer with tofu ( a paneer made from soya bean milk ).This kabab dish is very easy to make and is a sure shot winner at get togethers. You can make all the preparations in advance . Just frying has to be done before serving. These minty kababs taste good with green chutney or tomato ketchup or even with any curd dressing.

 I am posting this today for  vegan-thursdays an event by Priya Suresh where we post a vegan dish on first and last thursdays of each month.








Ingredients :

150 gm ......................tofu ( soya paneer)
2 to 3 ......................boiled potatoes ( peeled and mashed )
2 to 3 tbsp...............cornflour
1 small cup..............fresh Pudina/ Mint ( very finely chopped )
2 ...........................green chillies ( very finely chopped)
1 tbsp....................raisins and cashew pieces
1 tsp......................sugar
1/2 tsp...................garam masala
salt
Oil for deep frying







Method :

Mix everything except the raisins and cashew pieces.

Make lemon sized balls and flatten them with your palm.

Deep fry in hot oil till golden in colour .

Dust the kababs lightly with cornflour if you want.

Serve hot with pudina chutney .






Monday, 3 February 2014

Malwani Chicken Masala Powder

Malwani chicken is a very popular dish which is much in demand in hotels and restaurants . When I posted  malwani-chicken-sagoti some time back I got many requests to post the recipe of this malwani chicken masala as well . But since I always make the masalas in small batches I took so long to post this masala recipe. Making masalas in less quantity helps them to retain their flavor and aroma.  I normally do not store any home made masalas for more than a month. But if you want to make them in large batches then refrigeration can help you to keep the masalas in good condition for a longer time.

This masala is very handy and gives an amazing taste to chicken. Malwani chicken is usually had with bhakris  or plain hot rice . It also tastes yummy with wade . I will soon post the recipe of Kombdi wade in which this chicken masala is used .  Used in malwani ( Malwan is an area on the Konkan coast ) cuisine , you can also add this masala to make various spicy vegetable gravies. 






Ingredients :

2 tbsp............................Coriander seeds
1tsp..............................cumin seeds
1 tsp...........................shahajeera
1tsp............................fennel seeds (badishep)
1tsp...........................pepper
1tsp...............................cloves
5 ..................................cardamoms
2............................masala cardamoms
1 ..............................dagadphool ( stone flower)
1 tsbp.......................javitri
2 inches...................dalchini




Method :

Dry roast all the ingredients till they give out nice aroma.

When they cool down grind to powder and keep in airtight bottle.

Always try making the masalas in small batches.

Otherwise they lose there flavour and aroma.

Other than in malwani chicken this masala can also be used in various vegetables.