Sunday, September 16, 2018

Makhane ki Kheer/ Lotus Seed (Fox Nuts) Pudding



Makhana/ Lotus Seeds are usually consumed during fastings because of its nutritional values and health benefits. The micronutrients found in lotus seeds are of vast importance to a human body. These lotus seeds are easily available in all the Indian grocery stores. This can be consumed raw or cooked into savory or sweet dishes. These lotus seeds are good for weight loss as these will leave you feeling full and satisfied.


These lotus seeds are also called as fox nuts. We can make this kheer/pudding which is one of the many dishes that can be made out of lotus seeds. Rich in protein and calcium, combines beautifully with milk to make a delicious and creamy pudding.
I first tasted these delicious seeds, when my friend in India made a savory and she gave the raw lotus seeds which she brought from her hometown. I started making different dishes by googling and recently I realized, I never posted a dish using these amazing seeds which have lots of health benefits.
The roasted makhana tastes exactly like popcorns. This recipe is so easy to make and can be done within no time. If any unexpected guests, this is a perfect dessert to serve them. Roast the makhanas and keep them in an airtight jar, which is ready to use at any time. Hope you all like this and try this out.


Ingredients:

  1. Makhana/ Lotus Seeds- 1 Cup
  2. Milk- 2 Cups
  3. Sugar- 4tbsp
  4. Cardamom Powder- 1 tbsp
  5. Saffron Strands- a pinch
  6. Clarified Butter- 1 tbsp
  7. Cashew- 10-15

Method:

  1. Roast the lotus seeds in clarified butter until they become crunchy. Roast the cashews in the same pan. Keep these aside.
  2. From the roasted lotus seeds, take a handful and coarsely grind them in a blender. Keep this aside.
  3. Heat the milk in a deep bottomed pan. Stir in between so that the milk won't scorch at the bottom.
  4. When the milk comes to a boil, add required amount of sugar and the saffron, stir well. In this add the coarsely powdered lotus seeds and the whole lotus seeds, simmer till they become soft and the milk gets reduced well.
  5. Switch off the flame, add the roasted cashews and the nuts of your choice. Enjoy this hot or cold.





Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Baked Fish Sticks


A healthy and nutritious fish sticks would be a perfect tea time snacks or after-school snacks. As kids would be hungry by evening, these fish sticks would be a great option to make as it would take very less time. A crispy outside with a moist inside fish stick is what everybody will love to dig in. These would make a perfect party appetizer.


My daughter will be very hungry after her swimming classes and every day I make sure she eats a healthy snack after an hour-long swimming.


I find it very easy to make these fish sticks as this requires fish fillet which can be thawed very quickly. Once you try making them at home, you won't buy the prepackaged frozen sticks again.
Strips of fish are covered in spiced bread crumbs and baked to perfection. You can have oven roasted veggies along with these fish sticks, which will make a perfect dinner. Hope you all will try this and let me know


Ingredients:

  1. Cod Fish Fillet- 1/2 pound (cut into strips)
  2. All Purpose Flour- 1/4 cup
  3. Bread Crumbs- 1/2 Cup
  4. Dried Herb Mix- 2 tbsp
  5. Smoked Paprika Powder- 1/2 Tsp
  6. Salt- as required
  7. Pepper Powder- 1 Tsp
  8. Garlic Powder- 1/2 tbsp
  9. Egg- 1 no

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Mix the bread crumbs with dried herbs, smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Place the flour and egg in separate shallow bowls.
  2. Take the fish strips, dip it in the all-purpose flour, shake off the excess. Dip that in the egg and then in the bread crumb mixture. Place them on a lined baking tray. When all the fish strips are done coating, arrange them on a baking tray and bake for about 10-12 minutes. When done, enjoy the fish sticks with ranch or tartar sauce.




Monday, August 27, 2018

Kerala Banana Chips/ Ethakka Upperi



The floods that dampened Onam, the harvest festival of Kerala, didn't dampen the spirit of the people in Kerala for reprising the sense of humanity in a time of grief. Back in Kerala, everyone is trying to get back on their feet after the worst floods hit Kerala. It is heard that as thousands of people are displaced in the floods, many are celebrating Onam in relief camps. This year Onam will be a low key affair.


This year I have tried my hands on making these delicious gold coin chips which are made of raw Kerala Bananas. I think because of it's shape and color as a kid I used to call these gold coin chips. These chips are my all time favorite ones and would buy whenever I see them in the stores. But this time I wanted to make them at home and see how these turn out. Though lots of oil is required to deep fry them I didn't think twice. I bought the raw plantain from a nearby Kerala store, sliced using a mandoline slicer and fried them in enough oil until crisp and crunchy. To my surprise, these chips were not oily, when compared with the store bought ones. I was really happy with the outcome and you know what happens with a homemade, oil-free, delicious snacks???? It gets over within no time.... But I was super excited as they came out really well. Hope you like them...



Ingredients:

  1. Raw Kerala plantain- 6 
  2. Turmeric powder- 1 tbsp
  3. Salt- as required
  4. Oil- for deep frying

Method:

  1. Wash and peel the bananas. Wipe using a kitchen towel.
  2. Heat the oil in a deep bottomed pan. When it is hot enough, lower the flame. Take a plantain, slice using a mandoline slicer, into the hot oil. Make sure not to overcrowd them. Occasionally give it a nice stir and keep them from sticking together.
  3. When it is half done, sprinkle turmeric powder and salt in the oil. When the bubbling diminishes completely, gently toss them. When you hear crisp sounds, switch off the flame and drain on kitchen tissue. Store in airtight container and enjoy as needed.


Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Sabudana Vada/ Crispy Sago (Tapioca Pearls) Fritters



Sabudana Vada / Tapioca Pearl Fritters are a most popular Indian snack which is liked by all. This is a traditional dish of Maharashtra, which is made during the time of fasting/ vrat for festivals, as this dish doesn't contain any onions or garlic. An easy and a simple snack which can be prepared in a less time if everything is well planned ahead.


These super delicious snacks are crispy from outside and soft from inside. Sago / Tapioca pearl is pure carbohydrate, the addition of peanuts to sago adds to the protein content, making it a balanced meal.
The popular things which can be made using sago are sabudana kichdi and sabudana kheer.  A little preparation ahead like soaking the sago overnight, boiled, peeled and mashed potatoes, roasting and coarsely grinding the peanuts make the work easy. This vada/ fritter is often enjoyed with spicy green chutney and a hot tea. Try this out and let me know.


Ingredients:

  1. Tapioca Pearls/ Sabudana- 1 Cup
  2. Boiled Potatoes- 2 nos
  3. Roasted & Coarsely grind Peanuts- 1/2 Cup
  4. Green Chillies- 2 nos
  5. Red Chili Powder- 1 Tsp
  6. Coriander Powder- 1 Tsp
  7. Cumin Powder- 1/2 tsp
  8. Lemon juice- 1 tbsp
  9. Salt- as required
  10. Oil- for shallow frying

Method:

  1. Soak the tapioca pearls overnight. They turn soft after soaking overnight, drain and keep this aside.
  2. In a mixing bowl add the mashed potatoes, powdered peanuts along with the drained tapioca pearls. Mix well.
  3. Add the chopped green chilies, cumin powder, red chili powder, coriander powder, lemon juice and required amount of salt. Mix all the ingredients well.
  4. Divide them into small portions and flatten them in the shape of round patties.
  5. Fry these patties in medium hot oil. When they turn golden on one side flip and cook till done. drain on kitchen towels and enjoy a nice evening snack with friends and family.  







Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Spaghetti in White sauce with sauteed Garlicky Chicken n Veggies


This homemade white sauce is the most delicious and the easiest recipe!! The white sauce is also called as Bechamel sauce, although the Italians refer to it as salsa di besciamella. In this, the flour is cooked in the melted butter and the required amount of milk is added for a thick, creamy sauce for the spaghetti. This white sauce can be used in most of the pasta dishes, as a pizza topping and also on toast along with sauteed mushrooms. A perfect for any dish.


We can add any cheese of your choice and also a different variety of veggies. This is a perfect dish for kids lunch box and they will finish off within no time. This dish is so easy to make and takes much less time. By the time the spaghetti gets cooked, we can prepare the sauce and saute the chicken and veggies. Try this recipe and let me know how this turned out...


Ingredients:

  • Spaghetti- 1 pack

For sauteeing:

  1. Olive Oil- 2 tbsp
  2. Boneless Chicken pieces (cubed)- 2 Cups
  3. Broccoli- 1 cup
  4. Asparagus- 1/2 Cup
  5. Bell Peppers- 1 no
  6. Garlic- 3 tbsp
  7. Tomato- 1no
  8. Onion- 1 no

For White sauce:

  1. Butter- 1/4 stick
  2. All Purpose Flour- 3 tbsp
  3. Milk- 1 1/2 Cups
  4. Italian Herb Mix- 2 tbsp
  5. Red Chili Flakes- 1 tbsp
  6. Salt- as required
  7. Pepper- 1 tbsp

Method:

  1. In a large pot cook spaghetti in boiling salted water until al dente. Drain well.
  2. Meanwhile, in a pan heat oil, saute the chopped garlic then add the vegetables along with salt and pepper till done. Remove when done.
  3. In the remaining oil add the cubed chicken and saute till cooked well. Keep this aside along with the veggies.
  4. Heat a large skillet, add butter. Once it starts melting, add the all purpose flour and stir it well till it gets cooked. Add the milk, continuing to stir as the sauce thickens. Bring to a boil, add the salt and pepper. Lower the heat, add the Italian herb mix, red chili flakes and cook for 2- 3 minutes.
  5. In the white sauce, add the sauteed chicken and veggies. give it a stir. Add the cooked spaghetti and mix everything together. Enjoy a nice warm spaghetti along with your favorite show on TV.




Thursday, July 12, 2018

Oven Roasted braised Curried Chicken


Oven roasted curried chicken is a dish which I made last week for dinner. First I thought of making my simple chicken curry, but then I dumped all the powders and sauces in the cooker, cooked till done and then baked, which turned out to be a hit in my house. This is a simple dish which can be prepared within less time. The process of cooking, baking and broiling look hectic, but once you start cooking, it will be in a flow.


Assemble all the ingredients in the pressure cooker and then bake them to perfection. A perfect curried dish which can be had along with rotis/ chapatis/ pulav. This will be a hit among the guests in any party. Adjust the spice level accordingly and kids will also love to eat this.


Slow braising of this dish yields to a soft, moist, tender chicken pieces to enjoy. First, the chicken pieces are cooked on high heat and then slowly oven roasted for some time till tender.
I like to have this with plenty of brown basmati rice to soak up the flavorful sauce.

Ingredients:

  1. Chicken- 2 lbs
  2. Onions- 2 nos
  3. Tomatoes- 2 nos
  4. Ginger and garlic Pase- 1 tbsp
  5. Red Chilli Powder- 1 Tsp
  6. Coriander Powder- 1 Tsp
  7. Cumin Powder- 1/2 tsp
  8. Turmeric Powder- 1/2 Tsp
  9. Tomato Sauce- 2 tbsp
  10. Soy Sauce- 1 tbsp
  11. Red Chilli Sauce- 1 tbsp
  12. Salt- as required
  13. Oil- 1 tbsp

Method:

  1. Heat oil in a cooker, add the chopped onions and saute till translucent. Add the ginger- garlic paste, fry for a minute, add the chopped tomatoes along with the masala powders. Stir for a minute on high flame.
  2. Add all the sauces along with required amount of salt. Add the cleaned and drained chicken, Stir well and pressure cook for 2 whistles. Switch off to cool.
  3. Meanwhile preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. When the cooker cools down, empty the cooker in a cast iron pan, bake for about 10 minutes and then broil for about 8 minutes and a perfectly roasted dish will be ready to enjoy. Serve hot along with rotis, rice or anything of your choice.



Friday, June 29, 2018

Kerala Bakery Style Egg Biscuits/ Coin Biscuits/



These biscuits are popular snacks which can be found in almost all the bakeries in Kerala. As a small kid, I used to eat these often whenever we go to Kerala for vacations. While coming back to Andhra, my mom used to bring big packets of these and always a big jar in my house is filled with these cute little bakes. These biscuits never lasted in my house for too long. These are devoured in no time.


These are mostly available in the shape of coins. That is why they are also called coin biscuits. These are also known as bean biscuits as some of them are in the shape of a bean.
The process of making the batter, piping them evenly in the same shape and baking them perfectly is an art. These melt in mouth delicacies are simple and an easy to make snack which will be loved by all and can munch at any time. Hope you all will try this out and please let me know.


Ingredients:

  1. All Purpose Flour- 3/4 Cup
  2. Sugar- 1/2 Cup
  3. Eggs- 2 Cups
  4. Vanilla Essence- 1 tbsp
  5. Butter- 1 tbsp
  6. Baking Powder- 1/2 tsp
  7. Yellow Food Color- 1 Tsp

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Beat the eggs along with sugar, vanilla essence, yellow food color and melted butter.
  3. Mix the flour and baking powder together and add this in batches to the above egg mixture. 
  4. Pour the batter into the piping bag or ziplock cover and squeeze small drops of batter onto a lined baking tray.
  5. Bake for about 20- 22 minutes. Let it cool completely before removing from the tray. Enjoy delicious biscuits.





Thursday, June 21, 2018

Roasted Spicy Chicken Fry


This is our most favorite chicken dish which we all like to have at any time, given a choice. There are many different varieties of dishes which can be made using chicken. we can experiment a lot of different styles. One such experiment is the outcome of this dish.


Usually, I would make some curry or semi gravy or fried, this time also I was sauteeing the onion and tomato mixture, the idea of grinding, marinating and slow roasting the chicken popped up and gave it a try. I think many of you might know this variety of fried chicken but I am trying for the first time.
A classic roasted chicken makes a delicious and healthy side that never goes out of style. The mildly spiced chicken is power packed with flavors. This dish can be made within less time. Hope you will like this. Just give it a try and let me know...


Ingredients:

  1. Chicken- 2 lbs
  2. Onions (chopped)- 2 nos
  3. Tomatoes (chopped)- 2 nos
  4. Ginger- Garlic Paste- 1 tbsp
  5. Red Chilli Powder- 1 tbsp
  6. Coriander Powder- 1 tbsp
  7. Turmeric Powder- 1tsp
  8. Garam Masala Powder- 1tsp
  9. Fennel Powder- 1tsp
  10. Cumin powder-  tsp
  11. Lemon Juice- 1 no
  12. Mint Leaf Paste- 2 tbsp
  13. Salt- as required
  14. Curry Leaves- few
  15. Oil- 3 tbsp

Method:

  1. Wash and clean the chicken. Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pan add the chopped onions and saute till it turns translucent.
  2. Add the ginger- garlic paste, mint leaf paste, tomatoes and saute till they become mushy. If it sticks to the bottom just add enough water and stir well.
  3. Add all the powders, required amount of salt, lemon juice, and curry leaves. Switch off the flame when the raw smell disappears and let this mixture cool a bit.
  4. When it is cooled, drop the mixture in a blender and blend well to a fine paste.
  5. Add this paste to the above-washed chicken and marinate for about 30 minutes- 1 hour. 
  6. Heat the remaining oil, add the marinated chicken pieces and fry well till it gets cooked and the gravy becomes dry. 
  7. Once it gets roasted well, switch off the flame and enjoy this dish along with rice, roti or you can eat it like that.




Saturday, June 9, 2018

Lamb In Yogurt Gravy/ Dahi Gosht




Lamb in yogurt gravy is my mom's style of preparation which she makes within no time. In this dish the lamb is cooked slowly in a spicy onion- yogurt based gravy till it absorbs all liquid and becomes a semi- gravy.


This month's MFB challenge is a special EID dish which is prepared at home or anywhere in the world. So today I choose my most favorite, my mom's lamb dish which is a delicious, mouth-watering dish which is one among her different varieties of dishes. Before going for the morning Eid prayers, my mom would prepare breakfast, like appam or idiyappam and this amazing lamb curry, which can be prepared in a very less time. After the prayers, we all enjoy the delicious breakfast. Today I am with this perfect dish for the perfect occasion. I hope you will try this and will love it.
In this dish, I made a paste of coriander leaves and added them as you all might know that my husband doesn't like the leaves to be seen on top. Like that also it tastes good. Try this out and let me know.


Ingredients :
For Marination:

  1. Lamb- 2 lb
  2. Red Chilli Powder- 2 Tsp
  3. Garam Masala Powder- 1 Tsp
  4. Turmeric Powder- 1 Tsp
  5. Ginger - Garlic Paste- 1 tbsp

For Masala:

  1. Oil- 2 tbsp
  2. Cloves, Cinnamon and Cardamom- 1 tbsp
  3. Onions- 3 nos (chopped)
  4. Tomato- 1 no (chopped)
  5. Ginger- Garlic Paste- 2 tbsp
  6. Curry Leaves- few
  7. Red Chilli Powder- 1 tbsp
  8. Coriander Powder- 1 tbsp
  9. Turmeric Powder- 1 Tsp
  10. Garam Masala Powder- 1 Tsp
  11. Curd- 2 cups
  12. Coriander Leaves- a bunch (chopped)

Method:

  1. Wash the lamb pieces and marinate with the ingredients under marination. Keep this for about 30min- 2 hrs.
  2. Heat oil in a pressure cooker, add the chopped onions, once they turn translucent add the ginger- garlic paste and tomato, stir till the raw smell disappears.
  3. Add all the spice powders, mix well add the marinated lamb. Stir till everything gets well blended and cook on medium-high heat, till all the water gets evaporated.
  4. Add the curd, mix well and on low heat cook on pressure till few whistles or till the meat gets cooked well. If there is liquid left out, cook on slow flame till all the liquid gets absorbed well in the gravy. Garnish with the chopped coriander leaves and enjoy steaming lamb curry along with your favorite roti/ kulcha/ naan/ ghee rice/ appam /idiyappam or anything of your choice.







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