March 31, 2010

Stuffed Spinach Chicken Breast


This is one of the commonest and favourite dishes in our dinner menu. Both the adults and the kids will love it till its last bite. Very healthy, nutritious and a full meal. Any kind of stuffing goes well with this recipe. I used spinach and mushroom stuffing to send it to the Event- 'Healing Foods Event-Spinach' , hosting by Divya and started by Siri.




Ingredients:-

Marination:-

Chicken breast – 4 pieces

Chili Sauce- 1 table spoon

Lemon juice- 2 table spoon

Soya sauce- 2 table spoon

Tomato sauce- 1 table spoon

Salt, Sugar and Black pepper according to taste.

Stuffing:-

Spinach – 1bunch

Mushroom- 5-6

Tomato- 1 medium

Garlic-3-4 cloves

Ginger paste- 1 tea spoon

Onion- half of a large one

Salt, Sugar and Black pepper according to taste.


Method:-


1. First slit the chicken breasts and make pockets. See the picture where I have shown, how to slit the chicken breast. Slit in to a 1 inch line so that you can put your finger. You can use your knife too, to make a pocket. But a finger works better than a knife, what I felt from my experience. Put your one finger through the slit and keep on making a big hole to form a pocket. The process should be done very carefully.



2. Marinate the chicken breasts for ½ hour or so with the marination ingredients given above.



3. Now make the stuffing. Finely chop the spinach, mushroom, tomato, onion and the garlic. Heat oil on a pan and put the garlic when the oil is hot. Add the onion when the garlic turns brown. Fry them till the onion turns light brown. Add the ginger paste and the tomato. Sauté altogether nicely. When the tomato becomes soft add the spinach and the mushroom. Add salt, sugar and black pepper according to taste. Keep stirring. Take out from the stove when the spinach is fully cooked and the juice has become dried out.



3. Pre heat the oven to 350 F.



4. Now take the chicken breasts one at a time and stuff them with the cooked spinach. Take a tooth pick, close the open area of the chicken breast by tucking it, when the breast is fully stuffed. You can use several toothpicks to close any open/ leaking area.



5. Place the breasts in to an oven-proof tray and bake for 35-40 mnts.



6. Serve the stuffed chicken breasts with boiled vegetables or bread or anything that you think goes well with it. Before serving pls take out the toothpick to have a safe and sound meal.





Pls Note: Yesterday, one of my Blogger friends pointed out that my blog was screening very big in her machine. After that I checked it in 4 other computers. In my husband's machine also, it's screening big but in the other machine, I found it to be fine. My husband informed me, the screen display and sizing depend on the setting of each machine which could be altered. I am not a computer expert. So any kind of suggestion regarding this or making my blog better or anything related to it is always welcome. I am sorry for the inconveniency.

March 29, 2010

Mixed Vegetables with Steamed Chicken Balls


Sometimes it happens with you, that you, yourself fall in love with your own creation. Whether it’s a write-up, a craft or a dish, anything, that will just give you an intense feeling of success and an inordinate mental peace and confidence of a true winner. It just happened with me when I cooked this dish. I didn’t ask my husband how the dish was (what most of the time I do), because I was so confident to get positive vibes.

 

Almost three years back, I was addicted to The Food Network Channel. I never used to miss a single episode. I loved to watch the way they used to cook and present. That day, before I cooked this dish, I was surfing my mind to cook something new and light. Suddenly just like a flash I remembered that I had seen, in one of the episodes of Food network, the process of steaming meat/chicken balls in a very innovative and simple way. The vague remembrance just led me to cook this wonderful tasty dish and share with you all...


Ingredients:-



For the Chicken Balls-



Minced Chicken- 1 Lb

Shredded carrots and cabbage- ½ cup
Salt-1 teas spoon
Black pepper- ¼ tea spoon
Italian herbs/seasonings- ¼ tea spoon
Corn Flour- 2 table spoons

For the vegetable and Gravy-



(Pls try to keep all the vegetables a same shape. That will make the dish more attractive. i.e. - if you are using a cube shape then cut all the veggies in to cubes. Here I am giving the measurement of the cut vegetables)


Baby carrots- ½ cup
Coloured Bell peppers- 1 cup
Green Beans- ½ cup
Cabbage- ½ cup
Cucumber- 1/ cup
Mushroom- ½ cup
Spinach (don’t cut)- a handful
Green onion (white and the green part separated) - ½ cup each
Vinegar- 1 tea spoon
Garlic- 5-6 cloves
Ginger- 1 inch thick
Corn flour- (depending on how much thick gravy u want)
Oil- 2 table spoons
Salt, sugar and black pepper to taste.
(More veggie you will add more colourful and healthy it will be).


Method-



1. Take a deep dense pan with a lid and fill half of the pan with water. Put on the stove to boil.


2. Mix all the ingredients given for the chicken balls. Fold nicely until it forms nice dough.


3. Oil your palms and make 14-15 balls out of the dough.



 


4. Cut silver foil into such a rectangular shape that you can nicely cover the chicken balls. Grease each foil lightly and fold the chicken balls with it carefully giving a shape of a ball.

5. Put all the balls in to the boiling water. Let them cook for 15- 20 mnts.

6. After they are done strain them out and let them cool. Separate the foils carefully and when are fully cooled.



7. Now heat the oil in a pan. Put the garlic first, when its brown slowly add those vegetables which take little bit more time to cook (like – carrots, beans etc). Cook for few more mnts then add all the vegetables and other ingredients, except the cucumber and corn flour.

8. Sauté until the veggies start to lose water. Add water, cover with lid and cook for 3- 4 mnts. Add the chicken balls. Check the taste if anything is needed. Add corn flour, diluted in water, slowly. Keep on stirring constantly while adding corn flour to avoid forming lumps. Lastly add the cucumber. After adding cucumber don’t cook more than a mnt. Cucumbers cook very fast. Serve hot with rice, pasta, noodles any thing...



It’s a very simple, light and healthy dish (light in the sense not oily or spicy). My husband and my daughter loved it very much. My daughter while having it told me, ma give me more momo. Then I just got the idea that may be MOMO can be steamed in this way too. I have the plan to try momo in this way. The steamed chicken balls really taste like the momo stuffing. And as told before after cooking it I just had fallen in love with dish, mainly with those steamed chicken balls.

This recipe is off to 'Healing Foods Event-Spinach' , hosting by Divya and started by Siri.

March 26, 2010

Pure Chocolate Cake (Or famously known as Death By Chocolate)



Our freezer would never be found without Ice Creams. Both my husband and I, and of course now our lil one, are voracious Ice Cream eaters. First few months after arriving in USA (those were the days when our daughter was not born); we used to try and taste each and every flavour of Ice Cream. We used to spend almost an hour researching and selecting the scrummiest one. One day while looking for a crate of Ice Cream I found one named ‘Death by Chocolate’. I automatically had a frown and a bitter smile and murmured myself- “what a name!!!!...so bad”. After returning home while keeping all the purchased items in their proper place, I found a crate of Death by Chocolate Ice Cream. My outraged soul thundered like a blast on my Husband. Totally unaware of the fact what was happening, my husband looked at me with a widely opened eyes and a surprised face. To clarify my anger I declared innocently – “Why did you buy this Ice Cream. I don’t want to die so early....” Hearing this, my husband just rolled on the floor with a wild laughter. And silly me, just then understood what a foolish statement I had made. But to tell the truth I still don’t like the title......




The day, I heard about Divya's  (http://divyascookbook.blogspot.com/) announcement on the Chocolate Cake Event, I started haunting for the scrumptious chocolate cake recipe (after baking two successful cakes my confident ‘I’ was impelling me to go for the next one.). A time came when I was just reading the ingredients and the method without seeing the title and the other detail. At last I got a recipe which just made me content and confident enough to prepare it for the event. With a winning smile, when I just looked at the other detail, I found that the title of the Cake is nothing but ‘Death by Chocolate’. All my energy and time were drained out to look for another recipe. So poor me, I lastly went for baking the same recipe for my Chocolate Cake.




Again the time has come to tell the next truth. Just after having the first bite of my own prepared Death by Chocolate cake, I really understood what actually meant by ‘Death by Chocolate’. The soft and creaminess of the cake just melted down in the mouth, giving the ultimate pleasure of savouring what a chocolate cake actually meant. No need to say that the scrumptious taste will just take you out of the world for few minutes. So that’s why might be it got a devil’s name.





Here I am with the recipe of 'Death by Chocolate' which I followed from Cacao Web and remoulded it in my way.

Ingredients:-


Before stating about the ingredients I should tell that I have used three kinds of frosting/icing - One for layering and the other two for covering.


The Cake:-


Semisweet chocolate-8 oz
Butter-1/2 cup
Sugar-2/3cup
Eggs-4
All purpose flour- 4 table spoons
Unsweetened cocoa powder- 3 table spoons
Baking Soda- 1 ½ tea spoon
Vanilla extract- 1 tea spoon
Sour cream- 4 table spoon

1st Frosting- used to layer the cake:-


I used the same frosting recipe which I used to bake my first cake “Imitation of Buche de Noel”. I liked the creamy tasty frosting so much that I was not able to control my craving to taste it again. Here I am attaching it once again-


Light tub Cream Cheese (Neufchatel) - 8 ounces
Confectioners’ sugar- 1 cup
Unsweetened cocoa powder- 1/3 cup
Vanilla extract- 1 tea spoon
Semi sweet chocolate (melted and cooled slightly) - 2 ounces

2nd Frosting- covering the cake (1st layer)

Heavy Cream- 1 cup
Confectioners’ sugar- ½ cup
Vegetable Shortening- 2 table spoon hipped

3rd Frosting- covering the cake (final)

Heavy cream or whipping cream-2/3 cup
Semisweet chocolate -9 oz

Method:-


A. Preparing the Cake:-



1. First beat the egg then slowly add sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, vanilla extract and sour cream all at a time. Fold all together in to a smooth batter.
2. Chop the chocolate; melt them by using a double boiler or in the Micro wave along with the butter. Don’t over heat the chocolate. Mix the butter and the melted chocolate in to a smooth paste. Add the chocolate paste in the cake batter. Fold all together nicely.
3. Pre heat the oven 350 F.
4. To bake the cake I have used two 8 ½ inch diameter circular baking pans. Grease the pans evenly then pour half of the batter in to one pan and the other half to the other pan. Even the surface level using a spatula and take out the extra bubbles by lightly stroking the pan on a firm surface.
5. Bake for 15- 20 mnts, until a toothpick pricked in comes out clean. Don’t over bake. The bottom of the cake burns very soon. So keep on checking and take out the cake from the oven immediate after it’s done.
6. Let the cakes cool in room temperature for 40-45 mnts.




B.Preparing the frosting layer:-

To prepare the frosting, in a bowl, place the cream cheese, sugar, cocoa powder, and vanilla. Beat on low speed until just combined, increase speed to high and beat until smooth. With the mixer on low speed, add the melted chocolate (To melt the chocolate put them in to the microwave for a minute or so. Keep on checking that they should not get over melted or too hot); increase the speed to high and beat until smooth for 2-3mnts.


C.Layering the Cake:-
Bring out the two cakes from the pan. Place the first cake on the serving tray. Spread the frosting on the top of the cake and level evenly. Carefully put the second cake on it and put the whole cake in the refrigerator to set.
D. Preparing the other two Frostings:-

1. Take the “2nd Frosting- covering the cake (1st layer)” ingredients. Beat the cream on slow speed and slowing mix the sugar and shortening. Keep the beater on till the cream starts to form peaks and looks shinny.
Take out the cake from the refrigerator and cover all the sides and top with the whipped cream and put it in the fridge to set at least for an hour.


E. Third and last part of the cake:-





1. Take all the left ingredients (3rd Frosting- covering the cake).
2. Heat the 2/3cup heavy cream or whipping cream in a sauce pan.
3. Remove from heat, add 9 oz of finely chopped dark semisweet chocolate, stir until smooth, and let it cool until it thickens.
4. Finally cover the whole cake with this chocolate sauce. Put the cake the fridge for an hour and then serve.


My dissatisfactory part:-


Though my cake is ready, there is something to share with all. Everything was going very well. When I was on the last stage of the preparation, that’s heating the cream and adding the chocolate, I found that the baking chocolate had become out of stock. As far as I remembered I had another pack of baking chocolate, but I didn’t find it anywhere. Cursing on my poor memory just made the sauce with the so called left over chocolates. So got the liquid chocolate sauce instead the thicken one.
 Now the most agony part- my daughter and husband just jump on the cake to devour it giving me no time to decorate. Thankfully I just got the chance to take few snaps and no need to say, all the plans to decorate my cake just sank in vain. (Though all the blame I passed on my hubby and my daughter, invisibly a powerful force was also working behind them to grab the cake and taste it. Its none other but me.... :( .Greedy me....ha-ha)
Best Part:-
My liquid chocolate sauce went great with the cake. It had given the impression of a viscous and at the same time a running chocolate fountain falling down from the body of the cake. It tasted best the next day when it was fully set resting in the fridge whole night. So this time also I was able to deliver a successful cake (may be not successful in the proper sense). But taste wise I was totally satisfied.
Now came to confess the last truth. Again my skeptical mind denied accepting the title- “Death by Chocolate”. So here I am with a new simple title for my cake- “Pure Chocolate cake”. Those, who are in my group, are welcome and those,who are not, they are welcome too....Enjoyyyyy..















Sending this recipe to "The Best Chocolate Cake event, hosting by Divya.

March 25, 2010

My First Awards

Yesterday when I opened my mail box, I was hardly on the verge to believe on my eyes. I was showered by a bundle of awards by N S of the feastinthekitchen.blogspot.com. I was so thrilled that I didn’t know how to react.

I first joined the blogosphere, that’s a couple of years back, only to savour the craze about the blog world. Then I had a long gap and discontinuation. Again I rejoined this sphere last month with a new tune and a new outlook. Before, the blog for me was just a place where I could post few of my hidden creative thoughts, nurturing all alone within myself, but now, I found that blogging is a place where you can get a recognition, get acquainted with so many talented and creative personalities, and breeding your talents and creativity as well.
The day I actively step in this spree, I get surprised and totally tuned, seeing the bunch of colourful blogs, bloom like a fresh rare flower. Each blog is a small proud world, depicting the beauty of the owner’s inner I. Creatively rich, literarily enriched; each and every blog deserves round of applause. I too wanted to be the part of their creative world; I too wanted to be awarded with those lovely blog awards. Now, here I am, entered the world and each and every day getting acquainted with so many talented bloggers. Just with the hope and fingers crossed, I waited for the day when my day will come and I would proudly publish a post on receiving awards. Not to wait so long my day has come at last, the day for which I desired so much, though it’s just the beginning of my journey.



First of all I would like to thank N S, who shared the awards with me and I wish she should get more awards and fame in the blogosphere. Now it’s my turn to share these awards with my fellow bloggers. I would like and love to share these awards with-
1.  Sayatani, who from her childhood is blessed with an outstanding creativity and talents and if you visit her blog, you will see that each of her post is a master piece of her beaut talent. One of my childhood good friends, her blog inspired me a lot to open my eyes about what the blog world actually is.
2. Next is Sushma, she is the one who from the beginning encouraged me with her regular feedbacks on my each post. Wonderful by nature is also an owner of a very colourful and creative blog.
3. Then, to Sharmilee, from whom I learned a lot about food photography and how to make my blog more attractive.
4. Then, of course Tina, one of the sweetest bloggers till I met, who called me DEAR in our first interaction.
5. Next, Priya and Divya need no Introduction, one of the most active and regular bloggers encourage me too with their expert comments.
6. Next Sarah, a wonderful cook and food photographer who would just within a second steal your heart with her delectable dishes.
7. Next, Indrani newly made blogger and Bengali friend, is too a super cook.

8. Mary, is the one, in whose blog I first introduced that condense milk can be made at home. All her wonderful recipes will just make u drooled.

9. Pradhu, one of my favourites, whose creative style of presenting a dish make overwhelmed.
10. Last but not the least An Open Book, Vrinda, Aruna, Super Chef ,Uma are also my new fellow bloggers who really deserve to be awarded.




My heartiest warm regards and best wishes to all of you for encouraging and inspiring me. I humbly welcome you all to visit my blog regularly and keep me telling that you all there to support me and encourage me. Here I am giving you all a virtual treat with my recently made Chocolate Cake. Hope you all would enjoy it till the last bite. The recipe of the Chocolate Cake is following in my next post.

NOTE:-

The winner, please

Put the logo in your post or blog
Pass on to atleast 12 bloggers
Link the blogger in your post
Let them know they have received this award
Share the love and link to the person from whom you have received the award

March 23, 2010

Bhapa Ilish /Steamed Hilsa in Microwave


I think Hilsa fish needs no introduction. Those who are cognized with Bengali recipes and culture must know that Hilsa fish is one of the famous fish of Bengal. Being the national fish of Bangladesh, it is very popular in "India's Assamese-, Bengali, Oriya-speaking regions and in Telugu-speaking regions (the fish is known as Pulasa or Polasa), in Pakistan (known as Pallu Machhi) and in Gujarat, it is known as either Modenn or Palva". Whether in pujas or in any auspicious ceremony offering an Ilish/Hilsa or a pair of Ilish/Hilsa is considered very propitious in Bengal. More than 50 ways Ilish/Hilsa can be cooked into delectable dishes. Apart from the scrummy taste of the fish one minus point of it, is the presence of excessive amounts of tiny bones which requires trained eaters/hands to handle.


One of the most famous recipes of Ilish/Hilsa fish is Bhapa Ilish or Steamed Hilsa. I don’t know the exact authentic way of cooking the dish. Still in Bengal most of the families follow the traditional way of cooking Bhapa Ilish, that is, marinating the fish with mustard, poppy seed, coconut paste and mustard oil, and steam it whether in a cooker,  or folding the fish into banana leaves and then steaming it (Though the version of steaming in wrapped Banana leaf is famously known as Paturi).


Now our life has become so fast that we are always looking for shortcuts to save our time. To cook Bhapa Ilish we put straight the dish into an oven. I took one more short cut step, saving the pre-heating time, directly put the dish into the Micro-oven. There will be thousands of recipes on net on Bhapa Ilish/Steamed Hilsa, and again I am also adding another, more or less the same recipe. I just thought that being a Bengali, my blog would not be successful if I would not post some traditional dishes of my place and share with you all. So here I am with the dish Bhapa Ilish/Steamed Hilsa cooked in a crosscut.


Ingredients:-



Ilish/Hilsa fish- 4 pieces

Mustard Paste- 2 ½ table spoons full

How to make the Mustard Paste:-

1. Soak the mustard seeds into water for 10-15 mnts.
2. Add a green chilli and a pinch of salt and grind into a smooth paste.
3. If you wish you can strain out the skin of the seeds. 
Poppy seeds paste- 1 ½ table spoons full

Yoghurt- 2 table spoons full
Mustard oil- 3 table spoons
Water- ½ cup
Turmeric Powder- ¼ tea spoon
Salt – as per taste
Green Chilli- 2-3




Method:-

1. Make a nice paste with the mustard paste, poppy seed paste, yoghurt, water, turmeric powder and salt. Take a microwavable bowl with a lid. Put the fish and the mixture and mix well. Add the green chilli as a whole.

2. Scatter 2 table spoons of mustard oil on the mixture. Put in the microwave and cook for 10 mnts. Bring out the bowl turn the fish very carefully then again cook for 10 mnts more. Keep on checking that the dish should not get very dry. If in between cooking the juice gets too dry add little water.

3. After the dish is done, scatter the leftover 1 table spoon of mustard oil and serve with rice or pulao.

Variations:-


Along with the mustard and poppy seed paste, coconut paste can also be added.


This recipe goes to the Kolkata Food Bloggers Online Event Microwave Expedition conducted by one of my favourite bloggers Indrani Dhar. Please visit  her blog Recipe Junction.


March 21, 2010

Return Gifts

I always have a special place in my heart and respect for those who are blessed with creativity. Either in the world of arts, crafts and literature or in the musical rhythmic world, where ever it is, creative personalities always deserve a special extolment.

From my childhood I am prone towards in of making creative stuffs. I always prefer to present a gift to my friends making something by my hand rather than buying something instant from the shops. This habit doesn’t change after my marriage too. My neighbours cum friends in USA threw a wonderful Baby Shower Party to welcome my baby during my nine months. Whenever I remind that day it overwhelms my heart with a joy knew no bound. Their generous greetings and caring love, shower like a blessing all the time for my baby. On that occasion I wanted to present the hostesses something special made by my hand which would honour my feelings for them. But at that time my health didn’t permit for a huge task which takes a lot of energy. After fighting a lot with my constructive thoughts I turned up with those tiny designed glasses. I went to the shop, bought some Stem less Wine Glasses, coloured tissue papers, assorted chocolate, silver and golden glass painting colour and small gift bags. I designed the glasses with the golden and silver paintings. Covered few assorted chocolate with a piece of tissue paper and pour in to each glass. Then along with a greeting card, penning down few lines direct from my heart, I put each glass in to the gift bags. That was my small return gifts for them bestowing my honour.


Reason behind Gifting this:-

Glass always symbolises a transparency. Every long-lasting relationship based on the faith and transparency. On the other hand a drinking glass symbolises the womb. Designing the glass I imprinted my touch of love and respect for them. The chocolates symbolises the sweetness of a relationship cuddled in love. On the other hand the womb is filled with the sweetness of love. Whenever each one of them would see the gift they would remember this day, the occasion, the dulcet love we have with each other and that would leave the magical incantation of blessings for my child.

March 20, 2010

Apple Chicken with Green Beans

My daughter is very choosy about foods. Outside foods are the tastiest food to her. Everyday her appetite demands for new kind of foods. My each morning starts with a frown and a tensed face what new meal, am going to cook after her taste. She doesn’t like vegetables or fruits except green beans, spinach and banana. So every time I have to cook a healthy food which can supply nutrition to her body, in such a way, that she should not see what the ingredients are added to the dish. Chicken is one of her favourites. So last night I cooked chicken with apple and green beans. I served this to her with plain noodles, which she liked very much. The dish turned out very tasty and as well as healthy too. The dish doesn’t take much time to cook. This is a very healthy dish for the kids as well as for the adults too. The recipe is as follows-
Ingredients:-

Chicken- 6-8 pieces (Medium, with bone)
Chopped garlic- 1 table spoon full
Garlic paste- 1 tea spoon
Onion – 1 medium (sliced)
Green Beans- a handful
Yoghurt- 2 tea spoon
Apple- 1 medium (I used green apple)
Oil- 2 table spoons
Salt, sugar and pepper- according to taste


Method-
1. Marinate the chicken with the yoghurt and little bit of salt for 10 mnts.

2. Heat 2 table spoons of oil in a pan, add the chopped garlic. When it will turn brown put the onion. Fry them till the onion turns golden.

3. Add the ginger and the chicken. Sauté for few mnts. Put a lid on. Keep on stirring in low heat in intervals.

4. Grind the skinned apple in to a paste. When the chicken seems semi cooked add the apple. Add salt, sugar and pepper according to taste. Stir nicely. Keep on cooking with the lid on. After 5mnts add the whole green beans.

5. When the chicken is fully cooked and the juice is dried up, serve it with bread/roti/rice/noodles whatever you and your baby likes.

March 18, 2010

Product Review - Parampara Chicken Karahi Mix

I am not prone towards buying instant gravy mixes and cooking them. One day one of my friends told me to try the Parampara Chicken Karari, which turned out very tasty to her. That stored in my memory. After sometime to replenish my grocery I visited the Indian Grocery store in USA.While surfing for my daily prerequisites, I found a shelf fully loaded with Gravy mixes and among them Parampara had taken quite a leading roll. Along with the Chicken Karahi mix, there were more gravy mixes dotted around, like- Paneer Karahi, Biryani mix, Tandoori mix etc. An initiation forced to enter me in the world of instant cooking. No need to say, buying the mix didn’t turn out a wastage of money.


About Parampara:-
Truly Indian by nature, Parampara Food products are manufactured in Pune, Maharashtra, India. The brand Parampara started as a small outfit creating pickles and other taste enhancing spice mixes and pappadums/papads etc. But now after completing 60 years, “Parampara had graduated to ready gravy mixes for main course & starters in traditional Indian flavour. With current product range of main course variants are 26 in total and starter’s variants are 7. Parampara is continuously working to blend old cooking methods with the modern lifestyle.” (http://www.paramparamix.com/)

Cooking Time & Method:-

Along with the preparation time it takes 20-25mnts. Apart from the gravy mix the other ingredients you need are boneless chicken, onion and capsicum cut in to cubes, yoghurt and water. You have to mix the gravy mix with yoghurt and water in to a paste. Fry the onion and capsicum, reserve. Fry the chicken till it turns golden then add the mix. Cook for few mnts. Your dish is ready. The ‘how to cook’ instruction is given in detail in the back of the Pack. You don’t have to become sweat and tired while cooking a spicy delicious Chicken Karahi.

The Taste:-

After tasting it you will not try Chicken Karari in the restaurants next time. It exactly tastes like the Chicken Karari we usually have in the Restaurants. If you are a spicy lover then you are definitely going to love it. Rich and oily by nature, spicy and hot in taste will just enhance you craving to eat more. It goes perfect with the roti or paratha and as well as with the rice too. After cooking it the colour of the dish and the smell will definitely make you slobbering.


My Feedback:-

First I cooked the dish with a doubt in mind how it would be, but after cooking I didn’t have any space to repent. Though I always try to avoid spicy oily foods with a hope to lose extre few kilos, once in a while this kind of dish goes perfectly well. I would not recommend this gravy mix, those who have cholesterol or on a strict light diet, because this is a very spicy and oily dish. It’s perfect for the party menu, as it saves time and energy and very tasty to render a treat. Even for my coming weekend party I am having this Chicken Karahi in the menu. Last but not the least, let me clear one thing, the taste varies person to person. What is tasty for me may not be to you. So always buy the things in which you are surefooted enough.

March 17, 2010

Fish Paratha


The menu on my anniversary eve delicacy was Fish Stuffed Paratha and Chicken Korahi. I prepared the Chicken Korahi with the Parampara Chicken Korahi mix about which I am going to write in my next post. Below I am sharing the Fish Paratha recipe.



Ingredients:-

Flour-3 cups
Fish, Boiled, Boned and mashed- 1 ½ cups (the fish I used was Rohu).
Roasted spices- ½ tea spoon (red chilli, coriander seeds, cumin seeds &  fennel seeds roasted then finely grinded).
Finely chopped Onion- ½ cup
Ginger paste- 1 tea spoon
Tomato- 1 large (chopped)
Cumin seeds- ½ tea spoon
Turmeric Powder- ¼ tea spoon
Cumin Powder- ¼ tea spoon
Coriander Powder- ¼ tea spoon
Chopped Coriander/Cilantro leaves- 2 table spoon full
Chopped Pudina/Mint leaves- 1 table spoon
Salt & Sugar- per taste
Oil- ½ cup (measurement is given per my taste, may vary to others)

Method:-

1. Heat 3 table spoons of oil in a pan or korari. Temper with the cumin seeds, and then add chopped onion. Sauté the onions tile they turn golden. Add the chopped tomato and the ginger paste. Fry until the oil starts to separate. Add the boiled, boned and mashed fish. Mix well all the ingredients and then add all the spices (roasted spices, turmeric, cumin, coriander powder, salt & sugar). Fold all together very well. Sauté till all the ingredients mix well and become dry dough all together. Add the chopped coriander and mint leaves. Sauté for a couple of mnts more. Then spread the stuffing on a plate to cool down.



2. Now take the flour. Add a pinch of salt and ½ tea spoon sugar. Mix well. Then add 2 table spoons of oil. Fold nicely. Add water (add water slowly accordingly how much you need while kneading continuously). Knead the flour till it forms nice and soft dough and your hand starts to feel oily.



3. Make 8 to 10 medium size balls. Take each ball, make a shape of a small bowl by your hand then stuff it with the fish stuffing close the sides well so that the stuff should not come out. Dust in flour and roll in to discs.



4. Now take a tawa or flat pan cook each paratha one by one till they turn golden. Brushing 1 tea spoon oil for each side. Fish paratha is ready. Serve hot with some delicious gravy dish and yoghurt.

And also to Cooking with Seeds - Coriander Seeds announced by Priya.

March 14, 2010

Celebration Time- My first Fondant Cake


Now I am on the top of the world and feeling so proud that simultaneously am able to devise two successful cakes. My husband declared that this is the best anniversary gift he has ever received. Yes, the first Fondant cake made by me is the anniversary gift to my husband. And I, myself, am feeling so satisfied after bestowing the gift. Just a couple of days back we completed the 5th year of our sweet & sour Married life.

Time really swings within a fraction of second. I could still remember those days when our marriage was fixed and we got married within a couple of months. Got only a 4-5 days for a telephonic conversation with my would be husband to amass all the premarital romance. At that time heart desired to delve deeper in love, but mind was totally obsessed with the fact of leaving parents, home for an unknown destination. The proverb goes perfectly true that time heals everything. The first year swayed hypnotically with the newly blessed love. The grief of leaving my parent, my home slowly buried down under the peace of exploring new love. Every day the dining table used to become embellished with a handful of new and inviting recipes. Then kitchen became the podium to show my love for him. Adorning myself everyday in a new way, spending hours in front of the mirror, became the passion. Faring the silly little thing to make my hubby happy, were then the only goal for me. The first year passed away in making of a good and perfect husband and wife. In the second year we moved to the next phase of our life. We became the proud parents of an adorable sweet little angel. Just after two years of our marriage she was born. The next three years how passed we both were unaware. Our entire world narrowed down to her only. Apart from welcoming the most treasured member of our life, we welcome few more spices to make our love impregnable in every alternate day. Sometimes the love in between my husband and me started to become sour, sometimes bitter, sometimes too sweet, and sometimes hot. But a single smile of our daughter wipes away all hunches like a fresh wave.
In the very day of our 5th marriage anniversary, while making the Cake, I had a realisation. My husband was going to return on that day from his official tour. I was too excited in making of the cake and other dinner dishes to surprise him. This excitement I felt after a long period. After my daughter was born I was so busy in my motherhood that I was just on the verge of forgetting about me and my love. I was just like a machine doing all the works of a mother and a wife. During the absence of my husband I missed him so much and missed all the bitter/sour moments too. I realised that these are the spices of love which make love stronger and testier. While designing the cake opened my heart and pour all the feelings I have for him after a long gap, remembering all those sweet memories we spent together.

Every year I wanted to make a cake, mainly, wanted to decorate it just after my mind on this occassion. I still remember on my first anniversary I prepared a cake. When my husband came he didn’t say anything but gave such a smile that at that time I just want to disappear anywhere. He found me, just in the middle of a destroyed battle field, fighting all alone with the unsuccessful cake and scattered icing. Both of us spent the anniversary evening cleaning the messy kitchen. After that whenever I placed a hint of baking a cake, my husband’s pity stare reminded me that day and never to utter once again to bake a cake.


Again time is not always the same for everybody. Yesterday only my husband demanded me to bake some nice cake for him. And no need to say- I am so happy.

From last few days I grew an interest in Fondant cakes. Seeing lots of wonderfully decorated fondant cakes by my fellow bloggers forced me to take a risk to make a fondant cake. Inspired by their creativity I went to the shop and bought Wilton’s ready-to-use Fondant Roll.


In the package very helpful guidance is given and I got one more helpful tips from Food Network. There are lots of videos on how to make Fondant cakes uploaded in Youtube too. As I thought, that to create this type of cake must be very difficult, but it is not so hard. Just skill and patience are the two key tools here. I prepared two layered sponge cake and used whipping cream (added sugar) for the icing. Then with help of the fondant roll I decorated my cake.
Few tips:-

1. Fondant roll by taste is very sweet. So when you will prepare the cake use sugar less than what usually you add.

2. If you feel that your fondant is getting hard put it in to the microwave. But not more than 3-4 seconds. Fondant gets hot very soon and it can burn your hand. If you still think to make it more soft then add a second more. Each time keep on checking.

3. Keep some vegetable shortening or butter handy by the side of your fondant cake. Whenever you feel the fondant is getting sticky put little bit of butter or shortening in hand.

4. To stick the designed fondants on the cake rather than using water use butter. You can also use water. But as much less as you can.