Sunday, July 31, 2016

Pumpkin Moussaka

Pumpkin Moussaka
This is a recipe that was given to me by one of my students who loved anything with brinjal.  Many Moussakas later and a firm family favourite we have combined the boring brinjal with practically every vegetable- from pumpkin to carrots to cauliflower, peas and broccoli.  Never mind tomatoes.  Pumpkin Moussaka, here we come.

The Recipe:

500 gms mince, washed and drained; 1 large onion, minced; 2 cloves garlic, minced fine; salt and pepper to taste; 2 tbsp olive oil

Pumpkin Puree:  2 cups orange pumpkin, boiled with 1/2 cup water till soft, cooled and pureed with 1 large clove of garlic and 1/2 inch ginger.

300 gms sliced brinjal- soak in salted water and drain.  Grill at 225 C with olive oil and salt for 2 minutes each side.  Keep warm till required.

White Sauce:

1/2  cup chicken stock; 1/2 cup milk; salt & white pepper to taste; salt and pepper to taste; 1 dsp flour; 1 small onion minced; 2 tbsp grated cheese.

      Heat oil in non stick pan.  Fry the minced onions until glazed and transparent.  Add flour and stir fry for a minute till crisp.  Lower flame and slowly pour in the chicken stock, stirring all the while to avoid lumps.  Next add the milk and keep stirring until thick and creamy.  Add the cheese and gently mix.  Season with salt & white pepper.  Keep warm till required. 

Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick pan and stir fry the onions and garlic till glazed.  Add the mince and cook till brown.  Add the pumpkin puree and pepper and salt and cook on medium heat to desired consistency.

To Assemble:

Grease a large oven proof dish and pour 1/2 cup of the mince and pumpkin mixture into it.  Place a layer of brinjal over the Pumpkin Mince Sauce and pour 1/2 cup white sauce over. Repeat layers ending with the Brinjal and finishing with White Sauce on top.   Sprinkle with more grated cheese on top.   Bake in a Pre heated oven at 225 C for 45 minutes until cheese is brown and bubbly.  Take out of the oven and cover and keep for 15 minutes.  Serve hot with garlic bread.  I served it with my Multi Grain Garlic Bread which was a complete knock out..

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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Aloe Vera Salad

Aloe Vera Salad
This is a versatile, tasty and nutritious salad that could pass as a snack as well.  I like to make large quantities of it and pack it in individual portions and keep it in the fridge. It goes with everything and has a lovely tangy crunch.

The Recipe:
1/4 cup moong dal or green gram dhal washed and soaked overnight in 2 cups water; 1 large carrot grated; 1 small green mango, grated;1 small cucumber, diced- seeds removed; 1/4 cup fresh, grated coconut; 1 green chilli, minced; 1/2 cup coriander leaves; 1 tsp brown sugar; salt to taste; 3 caps ( about 15 ml)  Herbalife Aloe Vera concentrate.

For Seasoning: 1 tsp olive oil; 1/4 tsp mustard seeds; 1/2 tsp black gram dhal; a pinch of asafoetida.

Next day, drain the moong dhal and mix with all the other ingredients in a large bowl. 
Heat the oil in a non stick pan and add the mustard seeds. When they start spluttering add the black gram dhal and stir fry for a minute on low flame. Add the asafoetida and mix with the salad ingredients. Serve immediately as an accompaniment or as a snack. Incidentally, eaten regularly, this salad is good for a healthy, glowing complexion.

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