Sunday, November 25, 2012

Pasta Salad

Salad In A Glass
A few weeks ago, I was asked to contribute a vegetable salad for a gathering of about 30 people.  One of my Breakfast Shake friends suggested a Pasta Salad and was kind enough to give me a basic recipe recommending I use whatever I had in the kitchen.  This then is my culinary masterpiece that was well received and very much appreciated.  

The Recipe :
3 cups mixed vegetables -- I used grated carrots, boiled peas, shredded cabbage and cherry tomatoes; 3 cups mixed fruits like green apple, red apple (cubed), pineapple cubes and grapes, halved; 2 cups of cooked pasta, I used two different types; 1 cup curds; 1/2 cup tomato sauce; 1/2 cup dressing of your choice, I used eggless cole slaw dressing; honey, salt and pepper to taste.

Beat the curds, tomato sauce and dressing to a smooth consistency.  Add the vegetables, fruits and pasta and gently mix together.  Add pepper, salt & honey to taste.  Refrigerate and serve in a glass.  Can be a meal in itself.  Tastes good and looks good.  A great dish for a party!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Capsicum Rings With Cottage Cheese And Egg

Weekend Tales

Some years ago, soon after we moved to Kuala Lumpur our bathroom drain got clogged.  There was water everywhere and so I opened the drain to see what I could do about it.  Guess what I found?  Pieces and pieces of golden paneer arranged neatly in a row.  Talk about being creative, that was Ranita then.  Today, paneer is a much loved item and we all enjoy it whenever we can.

The Recipe

250 gms paneer crumbled; 1/2 tsp chilli powder; 1 tsp somph, powdered; 2 tbsp curds; 1 tbsp gram flour; salt to taste;     2 eggs; 1 medium green capsicum;salt & pepper to taste; tomato sauce for topping; some oil for frying.

Marinade the paneer in the chilli powder, somph, curds, gram flour and salt for  30 minutes.

Cut the ends of  the capsicum and slice the remaining into three thick rings.  Chop the sides and keep for use later.  Beat the eggs with pepper & salt lightly.  Heat a non stick pan, add 1 tbsp oil and when hot put the capsicum rings in and fry gently one side for 2 minutes only. The rings should be firm and crunchy.  Flip over and pour the beaten egg into each of the rings until nearly full.  Cover and cook on medium heat until egg has set.  Gently flip over and brown the egg for a minute or two.  Transfer to plate and keep hot.

Next, add 1 tbsp oil to pan and gently stir fry the paneer till golden brown.  Add the chopped capsicum and fry for a couple of minutes.  Transfer to serving plate.  Arrange the capsicum rings on top and dot with tomato sauce.  Serve with Naan or rice.  It's your call.  Simple and satisfying and leaves you wanting for more!

P.S. Thanks to Elizabeth  Dhanaraj for the luscious Paneer Recipe.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Green Apple Curry


Some months ago we were presented with a whole basket of lovely green apples.  They were sour and had a tang to it.  So I made them into salads, cakes, tarts and what not.  One recipe I found was quite unusual and it caught my fancy.  Made it and the rest is history.  Try out this lip smacking Green Apple Curry and surprise your friends and family.

The Recipe:

4 medium green apples cored and cubed, soak in water with a teaspoon of salt to prevent it from becoming brown; 1 large onion, sliced; 3 flakes garlic, minced; 1 inch piece ginger, minced; 1 dsp curry powder of your choice; 1 tbsp vinegar; mustard and curry leaves for seasoning; 2 dsp olive oil; 1 large tomato, diced; 1/2 tsp sugar to taste. 

Heat oil and add the mustard seeds.  When they crackle add the curry leaves, onions, ginger and garlic.  Stir fry till onions become golden brown on a medium fire.  Add the tomatoes and cook till mushy.  Now add the  curry powder, salt to taste, vinegar and the sugar .  Mix well, add the apples, 1/4 cup water and cover and cook for 5 minutes or until apples are soft but still retaining their shape. Taste and add more sugar if required.  It should be spicy, sweet and sour all at the same time.  If you have achieved that you a cook to reckon with.  Serve hot with curd rice or any Indian bread.  

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Mashed Potato Surprise

An Artistic Endeavour

Edible art was a big item on our daily menu when the girls were growing up.  We have eaten a variety of different shaped chappathis, pooris, cakes, biscuits, salads and more.  Nowadays Edible Art serves to decorate our table on special occasions or weekends and is truly a fantastic way to get children to eat everthing. Today's recipe is the transformation of the simple mashed potato into a centrepiece worth talking about.

The Recipe:

2 large potatoes, boiled and mashed to a smooth consistency; 1 large carrot, boiled and mashed; 2 tbsp milk; 1 tbsp butter; salt & pepper to taste; 1 medium onion, chopped and 1 tsp jeera (cumin)seeds for seasoning; 1 tbsp oil; 20 to 24 multi grain chips or whatever chips you have at hand.

Mix the mashed potat, carrot, salt pepper, butter and milk to a desirable consistency.  For a dip add more milk.  Heat the oil in a nonstick pan and throw in the jeera seeds. When they sputter add the chopped onion and cook on a low fire until glazed.  Add to the mashed potato and mix well.  Turn onto serving plate.  Arrange the chips all aroind so that the entire presentation looks like a large flower.  Serve immediately with Indian breads or eat plain in a bowl as an appetizer.  Goes well with everything and kids just love it with chips.

Tantalising Tiramisu

Easy  Biscuit Pudding

Something went wrong with my computer and was unable to access my blog.  So have not posted the recipes I intended for October.  Am now using Ranita's laptop.  What a relief to be able to do one of my favourite weekly activities.  This recipe is absolutely wonderful and a knock out for parties when you have a lot to do. It was sms'd by a friend a while ago and I saved it for a very special occasion.  Jayanthi Dhanaraj & Kenneth Pichamuthu, this one is for you.

The Recipe

One large beautiful bowl; 17 Marie Biscuits; 250 gms cream cheese; 250 gms whipped cream; caster sugar to taste; 2 dsp Nescafe dissolved in 1/4 cup hot water with 2 tsp sugar added to it; whole almonds for garnish.

Beat the whipped cream, cream cheese and sugar (to taste) together.  Keep aside.  Dip 6 of the biscuits in the Nescafe and place in a layer at the bottom of the bowl.  Pour half of the beaten mixture over and repeat with 6 more biscuits making two layers.  Top with remaining biscuits and garnish with almonds. Drizzle remaining Nescafe over the top.  Keep in refrigerator to set overnight.  Can have as many layers as desired.
Tastes wonderful and looks good too.