My Quick, Healthy After-School Vegetable and Rice Meal

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I came back from school today with a ravenous craving for some fresh sauteed vegetables, and so I decided to try something new.
I fried some sliced ginger and green chillies in olive oil, and then added mixed ground pepper, oregano and the vegetables (beans, mushrooms, and broccolini).

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The vegetables turned out to be delicious and I loved the taste of the mushrooms, but I didn’t get as strong of a ginger-y taste as I was expecting.
I asked my mom, and she said there would be a stronger ginger flavor if there was something wet to bring it out.
Next time, I’m going to add maybe balsamic vinegar, or soak the ginger in soy sauce.
The bread in the picture is baguette drizzled with olive oil with garlic and Italian seasoning in it.

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Nana’s treasure of recipe books

I am over at my nani’s (nani is the hindi word for grandmother) house for a visit, and one of my favorite pastimes while I’m here is reading through my nana’s (grandfather) old collection of recipe books.

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My nana was a man who enjoyed the finer things in life, food and cooking in particular, and would often prepare complicated dishes from different cuisines, even though he lived in India in a time when many ingredients from other cuisines were not easily available. My mother often warmly recounts stories of lavish parties with detailed menus of food and drink, but also of family dinners when nana would make everybody try new things.
My nana passed this love of food onto my mom, who then passed it onto me. I will always be happy that my mom was able to experience the intricacies of different cuisines even in a time when information wasn’t so easily accessible, as she was then able to share this knowledge with me!
So, back to the recipe books.

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Every time I visit, I make it a point to read through this collection, and it truly is a treasure. Old books of different cuisine full of detailed recipes and mouthwatering pictures, sometimes with ingredients I’ve never heard of, and always full of dishes I want to try.
I always want to take all of them with me, but only take two or three because I’m pretty sure my mother would not be happy paying the airline excess baggage fee!
Here are a few pictures:

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Cottage cheese and sesame balls

Cottage cheese and sesame balls
Cottage cheese and sesame balls

The day I made these, I had a HUGE craving for something fried. After scouring through all my recipe books I finally found the perfect thing 🙂

These are absolutely heavenly and REALLY easy to make. You just have to mix everything together! Tastes best with Green chutney and tomato ketchup.

Cottage cheese (paneer in India) is a firm and spongy cheese and has a really unique taste – not at all like other cheeses . It is used a lot in Indian cooking and lends itself well to all tastes!
Happy Cooking!

INGREDIENTS:

250g cottage cheese, crumbled or grated

1/2 cup corn, boiled and mashed (I did not mash them and they burst while frying. So you should.)

The mixture with whole, not mashed, corn.
The mixture with whole, not mashed, corn.

1 tbsp ginger, grated

3 tbsp finely chopped coriander leaves

1 tsp finely chopped green chillies

2 slices bread crumbled

2 tbsp. cornflour

1/4 tsp chaat masala

1/4 tsp red chilli powder

1/4 tsp pepper powder

Salt to taste

Sesame seeds to coat

Oil to deep fry

METHOD:

Mix everything except the oil and sesame seeds in a bowl.

Heat oil for deep frying. Spread the sesame seeds in a plate.

Make small balls of the cottage cheese mixture and coat in the sesame seeds. (Don’t worry if the whole ball is not covered. It is supposed to be sparsely covered) (See pic)

The croquettes. (Not fired.)
The cottage cheese balls. (Not fired.)

Deep fry till golden brown. (Again, don’t worry if the sesame seeds fall off while frying.)

Drain on a paper towel and serve hot with green chutney and tomato ketchup.

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I’m Back!

Hello readers!
Sorry for not posting for sooooo long! But I was having fun being blissful in Ladakh!
It was breathtaking…….and the cuisine – YUM!
They have food like Thukpa, Skew, Momos (heavenly) and Chutaki
The scenery will take your breath away each and every time you go out and the rivers – Indus and Zanskar are beautifullll.
But now that I’m back, I’ll be posting recipes again!
Enjoyyy!
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Sunshine Award

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Sexy Cuisine Thank you so so so so so so much! I’m so glad that my blog is being recognised by such an inspiration to me and such a well established and great blogger too!

The rules to accept this awards are:

1) Accept the award

2) Post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award and his or her blog link

3) Answer the questions below

4) Pass the award to 10 other blogs providing links to their blogs

5) Contacting them to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

Questions:

1.  Favourite colour? : Purple

2. Favourite animal? : Puppies (SO CUTE!)

3. Favourite number?: 2

4. Favourite colour? : Blue

5. Favourite drink? : Cold Coffee

6. Facebook or Twitter? : Facebook

7. what is your passion? : Cooking

8. Giving or getting presents? : Both. Love seeing the joy on someone’s face when I give, and everyone loves to get a present!

9. Favourite day of the week? : Friday

10. Favourite flower? : Plumeria

My 10 nominees for the sunshine award are:

1. Dinner of Herbs

2. Confessions of a Glutton

3. Homemade with mess

4. Jabberwocky Stew

5. at350degrees

6. Searching for spice

7. Freaky folk tales

8. Cooking from the heart

9. Cornaby’s

10. Emily cooks Vegan

Chana Kebabs (Black chickpeas)

Chana kebabs
Chana kebabs

My mother’s recipe, these kebabs are very addictive! You can never have enough of them! An easy recipe and absolutely delicious, this will make your family go crazyyyy.
Ingredients:
1 /2 Kg Bengal gram/black chickpeas( soaked overnight)
2 medium onions, finely chopped
4 green chillies, finely chopped
1 inch peice ginger, finely grated
1/4 cup finely chopped green coriander
juice of 1 lemon
salt to taste
oil or ghee for frying

Method : Pressurecook the Bengal gram after adding salt and little water just enough to prevent the Chickpeas from sticking to the bottom. After it has cooled down, grind the chickpeas. It will yield a grainy paste. It should be moist so that you can mould it into kebabs- like a wet dough. This kebab mixture can handle a lot of moisture as it is made of chickpeas. Add rest of the ingredients and knead well. Make small kebabs and shallow fry on a non-stick pan in refined oil/ghee according to your preference. Serve hot with green coriander chutney and sweet tamarind chutney.
SERVING SUGGESTION:
Serve hot in pita bread pockets with onion-cucumber salad and mint-yogurt chutney.
This is the recipe for the green chutney. I will soon post the tamarind chutney recipe 🙂
1 cup coriander leaves
1 green chilly
1 tablespoon lemon juice
salt to taste
Blend all ingredients in a food processor.

Kebabs with tamarind and green chutney.
Kebabs with tamarind and green chutney.

Spaghetti with Tomato-Basil Sauce (My way!)

Spaghetti with tomato-basil sauce.
Spaghetti with tomato-basil sauce.

I’ve always wanted to make this dish. The pasta sitting prettily on a white plate and the yummy, wholesome sauce pored on top……YUM!

Usually it’s spaghetti with meatballs but I made a vegetarian version so that everyone in my house could eat it. Just thinking about it is making my mouth water…… I think I should get on with the recipe and stop day dreaming! 😛

You can make a number of things with spaghetti, but I mad some Italian roast vegetables.

This recipe serves 6.

So first cook the pasta.

You will need:

250g spaghetti

2 litres water

1 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

To cook the spaghetti, boil the water and add the salt, 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 250g of spaghetti. First, it will look like the picture below, but you have to push them down and submerge them under water once it is a bit soft.

The spaghetti's cooking!
The spaghetti’s cooking!

Cook till al-dente (Test with teeth {chew}). Drain and leave to cool.

Cooked spaghetti
Cooked spaghetti

While the pasta is cooling, you can prepare the sauce:

750g tomatoes, boiled and finely chopped

1 medium onion, finely chopped

4 1/2 teaspoon chopped garlic

1 1/2 heaped teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1 handful roughly chopped fresh  basil (You can adjust to suit your taste)

salt to taste

In a bit of extra virgin olive oil, sauté the garlic and onions till slightly brown. Add the tomatoes, pepper and salt to taste. Reduce till a bit thick (Not too much). Add the basil. Leave to cool. When cool, blend lightly in a liquidiser till a bit smooth and a bit chunky.

Now, To finally prepare the spaghetti:

Cooked spaghetti (prepared earlier)

2 teaspoon chopped garlic

2 teaspoon chilli flakes

1 tablespoon extra virgin  olive oil

Salt to taste

Heat olive oil in a pan and add the garlic and chilli flakes. Sauté till the garlic is slightly brown. Add the cooked spaghetti and salt and toss till all strands are covered with the chilli flakes. Toss till hot. Remove from heat and drizzle another tablespoon of olive oil on top.

In a bowl, first put some spaghetti and then pour the prepared sauce on top (you may re-heat the sauce if cold). Your spaghetti is now ready!

Another way to serve is to toss the spaghetti with the sauce in a warmed saucepan and serve with a drizzling of olive oil.

I served this dish with some Roast veggies I made.

My spaghetti and roast veggies meal.
My spaghetti and roast veggies meal.

Roasted Italian Vegetables

The uncooked vegetables
The uncooked vegetables

I served this dish as an accompaniment to the Spaghetti with tomato basil sauce that I made. It is my own recipe and I was a bit nervous about the end result. But it tasted – and looked absolutely gorgeous! YUM!

It’s a really simple recipe and no hard work is required 😀

For this you need:

1 small zucchini (or 1/2 large zucchini)

1 red bell pepper

1 yellow bell pepper

1 capsicum

2 eggplants

1 teaspoon dried oregano

2 tablespoon fresh marjoram leaves

1 1/2 teaspoon crushed garlic

2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Salt and Pepper to taste.

First to prepare the veggies:

First slit the zucchini and then cut lengthwise again. Then cut into small cube like pieces.

Cut capsicum and both bell pepper into big chunks.

Cut the eggplants lengthwise.

Then, In a bowl add the vegetables and all the other ingredients. Toss nicely so that all the vegetables are covered with the garlic, herbs and oil. Season with salt and pepper and toss again.

Roasted Italian vegetables
Roasted Italian vegetables

Put the vegetables in a greased baking tray and roast in an oven at 300C till cooked and lightly roasted. Your veggies are ready!

Weekly photo challenge: From above

Unbaked focaccia with tomato-basil feta and oregano toppings.
Unbaked focaccia with tomato-basil feta and oregano toppings.

My First Post

Hey foodies of the world!
This is my first post and I am extremely excited about this blog which I will use to put all my foodie thoughts in!
I will write about all my food experiences: Thoughts, ideas, recipes and reviews.
And don’t hold back on your comments! Constructive critisism is most welcome!
I hope you enjoy my writing and I promise to be a regular blogger.
Wish me luck!