Sunday, January 31, 2016

Orange Cake

Sunshine on my window and winter is ready to bid adieu from Kolkata.

Before the winters are gone wanted to bake some cakes with oranges. Oranges are an universal fave during winters. Throughout the winters, me and daughter have been snacking on oranges. I don't like orange juice. I love to take the small bite size pieces in my mouth. The sweet natural juice that oozes out from each piece is pure heaven.

This winter we made and orange chocolate cake and today I baked a simple orange loaf cake.



Here is how I made it:

Ingredients:

All purpose flour: 1 and a half cups
Sugar: 1 cup
White oil: 1/4th cup
Vanilla essence: 1/2 tsp
Baking powder: 1 tsp
Baking soda: 1/2 tsp
Eggs: 2
Oranges: 2 big ones
Chilled milk: 1 cup

Process:

1. First peel the oranges and take the pieces out. Discard the seeds and the white fibres.
2. Just squeeze the pieces with your hands to make a pulp. Mixer not required. Gather all the ingredients.


3. Mix the orange pulp, sugar and eggs. Mix well. Now add the milk, vanilla essence and oil.

4. In a bowl add the flour and baking soda + baking powder. In case you want to make a chocolate orange cake, add 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder.

5. Add the flour to the wet mixture in batches. Mix well to make a lump-free batter.

6. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees C for 10 minutes.

7. Grease a baking pan. Pour the batter in the pan.

8. Bake for 40 minutes at 180 degrees C.

9. Take out of oven. Cool till cake is warm to touch.


10. Slice the cake and enjoy.



Monday, December 21, 2015

When Hunger Strikes...Healthy Onion Crackers (Eggless)

(Adapted from a video recipe on Youtube)

Once the baking bug strikes, it is very difficult for me to keep away.

Today's recipe is a healthy one. Crispy crunchy eggless onion crackers with whole wheat.



You can find the video link here: video link

Here is how I made it:

Ingredients:

Whole wheat flour: 1 and a half cups
APF (Flour): 1/2 cup
White oil: 1/4 cup
Caraway seeds: 1 tsp
Unbroken wheat dalia: 2 tablespoons
Salt: 1 tsp
Sugar: 2 tsp
Baking soda: 1 tsp
Onion (chopped): 1/2 cup
Green chillies: 2 (chopped)

Process:

1. In a bowl take all the ingredients. Add enough warm water to make a stiff dough. Try to as less water as possible.


2. Take a portion of the dough. Roll it into a thin roti. Using cookie cutter/ a glass cut out circles.


3. Preheat the oven to 175 degrees C for 10 minutes. Place the cookies on a tray and bake for 22-25 minutes. The underside of the cookies should be golden - brown. (After 10 minutes, you should flip the cookies for even cooking.)

4. Serve hot with a cup of tea.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Winter Evenings....and Chicken Pot Pie

(Adapted from Niru Gupta's Chicken Pie Recipe)


After a lot of dilly-dallying winter is finally here in Kolkata. I was also in the deep freezer mode as far as cooking and blogging was concerned. Haven't tried any new recipe in quite a while.

With the advent of winter, the hubby man has been giving me gentle reminders that I need to bake regurlarly. (Since, I am on the weight loss mode, I was trying to avoid baking yummy goodies.) Cakes and cookies though fabulous in taste are not good for one's waist. (Hee! haw!)


Anyway, I was planning to bake something savory this time. And to answer my prayers, the hubby man bought me a pie-tin this weekend. I tried my hand at making a simple chicken pot pie. This is the pie in all its golden glory.






You can find the original recipe here: recipe link

Here is how I made it:

Ingredients:


To make the dough:

2 cups refined flour (APF)
3/4 cup butter
1 tsp vinegar in an egg or 1/4 cup cold milk
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder


To make white sauce:

2 cups milk
2 Tbsp refined flour
1 Tbsp butter
1 tsp salt

To make chicken filling:
500 grams chicken- boneless, cooked and diced

1/4 tsp white pepper/ black pepper powder
A pinch of rosemary (optional)
1 Tbsp slightly beaten egg or milk to glaze the pie


Process:

1. In a mixing bowl/plate add flour and butter. Mix the butter thoroughly with the dry flour using your fingers. The flour texture will become like breadcrumbs.

2. To the flour, add vinegar, egg, salt. Add some milk to knead the dough. The dough will be soft. Keep aside in the fridge.



3. Now, heat butter in a pan. Add 2 tbsp APF and stir fry. Now slowly add milk and stir till the sauce becomes thick. Do not let lumps form.




4. To make the chicken filling, heat 2 tsp white oil. Add half teaspoon of ginger-garlic paste and 1/2 cup of chopped onions. Saute lightly and add some chopped vegetables of your choice. I added chopped carrots and tomatoes. Now add the chicken mince. Stir fry for a minute. Add a dash of mixed herbs and rosemary. Add salt and pepper powder to taste. 

5. Once the chicken mince is cooked, add the white sauce to it and lower the flame. Keep stirring from time to time. The sauce with thicken further and you will get a thick creamy filling. Turn off the gas.



6. Take the dough out of the fridge. Divide it into two parts. One part should be bigger than the other.

7. Roll the bigger ball of dough into a thick roti. Here is my 8-year-old rolling out the dough.

9. Grease the pie tin. Place the roti carefully on the tin.


10. Pour the chicken filling on top of this base (roti).

11. Now roll the other piece into a roti and place it on top of the pie.


12. Prick tiny holes on the pie surface using a fork and brush with egg white. Pre-heat the oven to 160 degrees C for 10 minutes.

13. Bake the pie in the oven for 45-50 minutes. The top crust should turn golden.

14. Remove form the oven and serve hot!



Saturday, November 7, 2015

The No-Grind Bombay Chutney

(Adapted from VysyasRecipes: Bombay Chutney)

I have been missing in action for nearly six months now. My laptop conked off and since then I have hardly been  posting recipes.

Today was an exception. I got a lovely chutney recipe from the net. I simply had to make it at home and blog about it. This recipe is simple to make, all the ingredients are readily available at home...and whats more...it does not involve any grinding at all.

This versatile chutney can be eaten as a side dish with poori/paratha/dosa and of course with idli too.



I found the original recipe here.

Here is how I made it:

Ingredients:

Besan flour - 2  tbsp
Green chillies - 2.
chilli powder - 3/4 tsp.
salt - to taste.
turmeric powder - 1/8 tsp.
onions - 2. (cut lengthwise)
tomato - 1 (chopped medium).
ginger - 1/2 inch

For tempering:

Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp,
curry leaves: 3-4
chana dal - 1 tsp.
curry leaves - few
white oil: 1 and half teaspoon

Process:

1. First mix the besan with some water to form a thick, lump-free mix.

2. Next, heat oil. Add all the ingredient for tempering and green chillis. When the mustard seeds start spluttering add chopped onions and fry for a minute.
3. Add the tomatoes. Also add salt, turmeric, and chilli powder. Fry for some time. The tomatoes will turn mushy.

4. At this point, add the besan mixture. Keep stirring till the besan does not have a raw smell.

5. The mixture will become thick.
6. Take off the gas and serve. 


I served it with rava idlis that I made at home. Enjoy!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Dates and Raisin Sweet Loaf

(Source: A TV programme)


I often watch cookery shows on TV but hardly get around to re-creating them at home. I saw this recipe on a TV program and it was so simple that I loved it.

This bread has chopped raisins and dates. So its a real nutritious bread. The bread is sweet and aromatic. Kids love it!





Here is how I made it:

Ingredients:

Chopped and de-seeded dates: 1/2 cup
Chopped raisins and cashews: 1/4th cup
Whole wheat flour: 1 cup
All purpose flour: 2 cups
Instant yeast: 1 and a half teaspoon
Sugar: 1/4th cup
Salt: 1 teaspoon
White oil: 1 tablespoon
Lukewarm water: 3/4th cup + 1/2 cup

Process:

1. First take the lukewarm water in a bowl and add the sugar.
Next add the yeast and keep undisturbed for 10 minutes.
2. Now take the APF and whole wheat flour in a pan. Add salt and mix well. Add the chopped dates, cashews, and raisins.
3. Pour the yeast mixture into the flour mix. Add oil.
4. Now knead a dough for about ten minutes. Use more lukewarm water if required.
5. The dough should be smooth and firm to touch. It should spring back if pressed. Dunk the dough in a greased deep bottom pan.
6. Cover with a kitchen towel and keep in a warm, dry place for one and a half hours. The dough will double up in size.
7. Take the dough out. Press lightly to release all the trapped air.
8. Shape into a log shape. To learn how to shape the bread dough, view this video here. Place inside a greased loaf tin.
9. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C. Place the loaf inside the oven. You can cover the loaf with foil to prevent hardening of crust. Bake for about 40 minutes.
10. Take the loaf out of the oven. Brush with butter.

11. Let the loaf cool completely till room temperature. Slice and have direct or slathered with butter/jam.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

A Mango Surpise: Mangoccasion

(Adapted from a recipe given by the Hubby man)


This week the Kolkata Food Bloggers are displaying various recipes made from the king of fruits a.k.a Mango!

So, this week I present an easy dessert that is often made by my hubby dearest.

The mango milkshake is a staple in many households. This recipe has mango pulp and milk too but it is not milkshake.

Just see how gorgeous it looks


My little S named this dish Mangoccasion. You really don't need an occasion to have it!

Here is the recipe:

Ingredients:

Mango pulp from 3 medium size mangoes
Milk: 1 and a 3/4th cup
Sugar: 2 tablepsoon
Crushed ice (optional)
A handful of cashews, raisins, almonds, and tutti- fruiti to decorate.

Process:

1. First gather all the ingredients. Make sure that the mango pulp is also chilled. If you use, powdered sugar you will have a smoother dessert.

2. Pour all the ingredients in a bowl.

3. Now use a hand blender to mix everything well.

4. Do not add so much milk that it becomes a milk shake. The addition  of milk should be less. The consistency should be like thick batter.

5. Pour into glass bowls and decorate with tutti - fruiti, chopped cashews, raisins, and a sliver of almonds.

Set in the fridge for 2 hours. Serve chilled.

I am sending this recipe to the Mango Festival on the Kolkata Food Bloggers.


Sunday, June 7, 2015

Mocha Chingri (Banana Flowers with Shrimps)

(Adapted from Sens Kitchen: Mocha Chingrir Ghonto)


This week I present a quintessential Bengali recipe: Mocha Chingri. We Bengalis are awfully in love with the Banana plant. So, along with being an auspicious part of all our celebrations, we also eat almost every part of it. I mean literally! We eat the banana blossoms, the fruit, and even the stem (known as Thor).

No pooja celebration is complete if the community meals are not eaten on banana leaves.....


So now for the recipe.

I was not too fond of Mocha (pronounced mo - chaa) since childhood. But with time my tastes have changed and I have started liking the taste of banana blossoms. So, this Sunday I finally made the Mocha Chingri. This delicate dish of banana blossoms cooked with some potatoes and shrimps is really yummy and simple to make. 



I got a really simple recipe from the Sens Kitchen website. You can view the original recipe here

Here is how I made it:

Ingredients:

Banana blossom / Mocha: 1 cup
Shrimp - 100 grams, small peeled and de-veined
Potato - 1 medium (100 grams), diced in very small cubes (approx 1 cm)
Whole cumin/ Jeera seeds - 1/4 tsp
Bayleaf - 1 medium
Cinnamon - 2 inch, broken in 2-3 pieces
Green cardamom (choto elaichi) - 4 broken
Ginger - 1 tsp, grated
Cumin powder - 2 tsp
Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
Salt - to taste
Sugar - 1 tsp
Green chillies - 2 slit
Ghee - 1 tsp
Oil - as indicated


Process:

1. First you need to clean and cut the banana blossoms. This is quite a tedious process. You can watch this video here to view the process of cleaning and cutting the banana blossoms.

Watch video.

2. Bring to boil 2 cups water with a pinch of salt and turmeric. Add the chopped blossoms and cook covered for 15 minutes. Alternatively, you can steam the chopped mocha in a pressure cooker for two whistles on a high flame.

3. Chop the potatoes and clean and de-vein the shrimps. Gather all the ingredients together.



4. Dust the potato pieces with turmeric. Now heat oil and fry the potato pieces. 

5. Now take out the potato pieces with a slotted spoon and keep aside.

6. Now fry the shrimps pieces which you have already dusted with salt and turmeric.


7. In a pan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil. When the oil is hot add cumin seeds, cardamom, cinnamon and bay leaf. Let the cumin seed become dark in colour.

8. Add a mixture of ginger paste, turmeric powder, and cumin powder mixed with 3 tablespoon of water. I also added 1/4th teaspoon of chilli powder. Fry for a minute.

9. Add the chopped mocha and mixed well. Fry for 2 minutes on medium heat.

10. Add the fried potatoes, shrimps, salt, and sugar. Mix well. Also add 1/4th cup of water. Simmer for 3 - 4 minutes till almost all the water evaporates.The dish should not be too dry.

11. Add the green chillies and ghee. Take off the flame.

Serve hot with rice.