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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Fresh Kiwi - Cucumber Juice


Kiwi fruit is full of Vitamins and minerals, recently a study has proved its role in lowering blood pressure levels. In fact did you know Kiwi contain more of the antioxidant than oranges and lemons.

 Kiwi may look a small brownish, hairy skinned but they are rich source of Vitamin A, E, potassium, copper, iron and magnesium. Summer is in full swing, which means more of juices and milkshakes. I take 2 varieties of juices in a day to stay hydrated. And fortunately summer means lots of friendly fruits in the market.  For this recipe I have used fresh and ripe Kiwis and cucumber. So the next time you are feeling thirsty, make this green juice and enjoy this beverage as a breakfast drink for kids and adults.

Ingredients: (For 2 tall glasses)
3 peeled Kiwis
1/4 cup diced Cucumber (peeled)
Few ice-cubes

Method:
Cut kiwis into large chunks (save 2 round thick slices for garnish). In a blender or food processor, blend together the pieces of kiwi, cucumber and ice cubes. Divide juice among 2 glasses and garnish with remaining kiwis. Serve immediately. 

read more.. "Fresh Kiwi - Cucumber Juice"

Friday, May 15, 2015

Paneer Kali Mirch (Cottage Cheese in Black Pepper Curry) | How to Make Kalimirch Paneer


I am going to share one royal Paneer dish i.e. Paneer Kali Mirch. This mouthwatering Kalimirch Paneer is coated with cashew- onion paste and cream. One thing that I feel extremely proud as an Indian is the success of curry all across the world. Just now I was chatting with my sister over Whatsapp, she was telling me how surprised she felt on seeing Sarvana Bhawan and Desi Indian Restaurants in Paris. It’s so popular that in UK there is a yearly curry festival where various veg and non-veg curries are savored by people and attracts lots of visitors from around the world. Paneer means cottage cheese and Kali mirch is Black pepper, hence the name Kali mirch wala Paneer. Basically cubes of cottage cheese is marinated with mix of spices and then simmered slowly with Cashew paste to bring out the flavor. The end result is before you...

Coming from North India it was obvious for us to love Paneer Dishes like Methi Mutter Paneer, Paneer Bhurji, Shahi Paneer, Tandoori Paneer and we Bengalis are fond of Paneer Paturi

For the marinade:
200 gms Cottage cheese (paneer), Cut into small cubes
4 tbsp Hung curd
1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
1 tsp Ginger paste
Salt to taste
1/4 tsp Black pepper powder

To make gravy you need:

2 Onions
1" inch Ginger
2 Green chillies
1 cup Yogurt
1/2 tsp Red chilly powder
1 tsp Coriander powder
1 tsp Garam masala
1 tsp Pepper powder (adjust as per your taste) + 15 Pepercorns*
2 Cloves
2 Tej patta
8-10 Cashews, soaked in warm water
1 tbsp fresh Cream
Salt to taste
3 tbsp Oil

Method:

Start with the marination of cottage cheese, Mix everything together under "For the Marination" and keep aside for 2 hours. 

Heat oil in a non-stick pan. Fry the paneer pieces until turns to light pink (be careful as frying them too long will make paneer lose it's softness). **Save the left over of marinade to use later. Dip the fired paneer pieces into 1/2 warm milk.

We need to blanch the onions for this recipe so after you peel them, cut onions into four pieces. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, drop the onions in the hot water and continue to boil for another 4-5 minutes or till soft. Remove the blanched onions immediately and place them in cold water. Once they cool completely, drain from cold water and keep aside. 

Now make a paste of blanched onion, ginger, green chilies, cashews with 15 peppercorns*.  In the remaining oil add tej patta and cloves and stir it for a second.

 Add onion-cashew paste and fry till it's light pink or till you see oil leaving the sides. Take the marinade leftover **add little water and mix in  salt, red chilly powder, coriander powder and pepper powder and stir well for 3-4 minutes. Later add whisked yogurt. Stir fast so that it doesn't curdle. Add one cup of water and salt to taste and bring it to boil. 

After first boil add fried paneer pieces and let it cook on medium flame for another 3-4 minutes. Mix in cream and garam masala. Adjust the seasoning and consistency of the gravy, cover the pan and  cook it for another 5-6 minutes. Remove from the heat and garnish with freshly grounded black peppercorns and serve hot with Peshawari Paratha or Kulcha.

read more.. "Paneer Kali Mirch (Cottage Cheese in Black Pepper Curry) | How to Make Kalimirch Paneer"

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Aam Ki Launji |Green Mango Sauce With Jaggery | Kairi Ki Laungi


"Aam Ki Launji" means Green Mangoes saute in spices and little amount of jaggery is added to balance the tanginess of raw mangoes. Little water is added to form a thick gravy. Raw mangoes when simmered with mustard , nigella seeds along with few other spices and finally the jaggery in the end makes it a summer treat. It is finger licking tangy and sweet sauce which is a fantastic accompaniment with lunch during summer days. Kairi, means Unripe Green Mangoes that's why it is called as Kairi Ki Launji also in many states. The spices varies from state to state in North India. I kind of like the usage of jaggery more instead of sugar in chutneys so here you would see I have used jaggery. But you can use sugar if you like.

Mango being the King of all fruits, the versatility is offers is amazing. Juice, ice-creams, shakes, dals, rice, sorbet, jam, pickles, jelly, sauce are to name a few.  So learn this simple, quick Kairi Ki Launji and you can enjoy it with paratha /bread or have it after meals.
Have a look at some other recipe from Raw Mangoes:


Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups Raw Mango, peeled and diced
3 tsp Mustard oil
1/4 tsp Fenugreek (methi) seeds
1/2 tsp Nigella (Kaloungi) seeds
1/2 tsp Fennel (Saunf) seeds
1/4 tsp Cumin (jeera) seeds
1/2 tsp Roasted Cumin powder
Asafoetida (hing) small pinch
pinch of Black Salt
1/4 tsp Chili flakes
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
1/3 cup Water
4 tbsp Jaggery, shredded

Method:
Put the mustard oil in a pan and heat in on high flame till you can see the smoke. Remove the pan from the flame and let it cool for few seconds. This step is done to remove the raw smell of mustard oil from any dish. 

Put the pan back on low flame and now add methi, kaloungi, saunf and jeera seeds. Once it starts spluttering add hing, haldi, chili flakes and stir quickly. Immediately add raw mango cubes, salt and mix well with the spices. Cook for 2-3 minutes on low heat. 

Add water and cover the pan with a lid. In next 4-5 minutes you will see mangoes are almost cooked. Now add jaggery to the pan, mix well and simmer for another 5-6 minutes. When the jaggery is completely melted, taste and adjust the level of sweetness according to your taste.

 At this point I actually mash the mango pieces a bit to get a pulpy consistency. Now sprinkle some roasted cumin powder, black salt and combine well. Allow it to cool completely. Then you can transfer the launji to sterilized glass jars and store refrigerated for next 4-5 days. Each time use a dry, clean spoon to scoop out required quantity of launji.

Notes:

  • If you are making it in huge quantity it may take some time to clean, peel and dice the raw mangoes. Just don't keep it open for a long time. Submerged the cubes in water or else they will become dry.
  • How much jaggery you need also depends on the sourness of your raw mangoes. So adjust the jaggery according to your taste.
  • You can use sugar instead of jaggery.


read more.. "Aam Ki Launji |Green Mango Sauce With Jaggery | Kairi Ki Laungi"

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Vegetable Clear Soup | Veg Clear Soup Recipe


Vegetable Clear soup in the month of April ! Well this post got delayed by 2-3 months. But since one of my reader had requested for the same I had to overlook the timing. Soup is essentially a comforting food which is served during the starting of a meal. It could be classified in  two types such as clear or thick. Depending upon the thickness required agents like starch or cream is used. I find Vegetable Clear Soup a great source to use leftover vegetables and herbs. In winter times vegetable clear soups is the right choice for much needed nutrition and hydrating our body. Preparing such soup is very easy and does not take much time. Depending upon which vegetable flavor one wishes to emphasize, it could be given prominence. 

To make the Vegetable Clear Soup, I like to include all seasonal vegetables. The best part is that without using any kind of oil or butter soup could be tasty and healthy. So friends, if you wish to have a healthy lifestyle without compromising varied food, include vegetable clear soup in your day to day diet. Learn how to make Vegetable clear soup by following this easy recipe.
You can also check few other soup recipes:



Ingredients:
1/3 cup Carrot, chopped
1 big Onion, chopped
1/3 cup Cabbage
handful of French Beans
1/3 cup Mushroom
1/4 cup Tofu
6-7 Broccoli florets
Spring onion
Bell peppers in Red, Green and Yellow
3-4 Garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp Ginger
2 Green chilies, chopped
5 cups of Vegetable stock
2 tsp Vinegar
2 tsp Soya sauce
Salt and Black pepper to taste
2-3 tsp Oil

Method:
Wash, peel and slice all the vegetables, maintaining the same length. 

Heat oil in a pan, add ginger, garlic and green chilies. Stir fry for a second and then start adding vegetables one by one (except cabbage and spring onions). 

Turn on the heat to medium high. Add vegetable stock and boil until the vegetables are slightly tender. Add cabbage, tofu, soya and vinegar sauce. 

Taste and adjust the flavours according to suite your palate. Mix well and cook for another 2 minutes. Turn off the heat. Transfer the soup to the serving bowls. Sprinkle some ground pepper on top and serve hot !


read more.. " Vegetable Clear Soup | Veg Clear Soup Recipe"

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

How to Make Salted Chaas / Chaach | Indian Summer Drink


I spent most of childhood in North India, where we used to enjoy almost all the seasons, be it summer, autumn, spring or winter. If summer means more of Milkshakes, Chaas, Jaljeera, Mango shakes, ice-creams and so on then winter had all kind of soups. Any visit to Guajrati tradition of food, salted Chaach or Chaas would be served before a thali meal, same way you will be welcomed by Jaljeera in Rajasthani food joints. Chaas or Buttermilk is an ideal drink for summers. Chaach is basically flavoured with roasted cumin powder along with black salt. Although there are many versions of Chaas like Masala Chaach /Spicy Buttermilk, Pudina Chaas but I prefer this Salted Chaas. The difference between Salted Chaach and Lassi is that, Lassi is made out of thick curd and the thick butter that floats on top is added. Whereas Chaas is more diluted with chilled water. 

 I have been asked many a times from foreign friends that what is a buttermilk? I have answered essentially it’s a byproduct of yogurt separated from milk. This is a must have in Indian summer as it cools down the body and provides much needed calmness to it. Trust me in summer time the heat could dehydrate and sap your body from fluids which could make you seriously drained. Just a glassful of chaas or buttermilk and you are re renergized and good to fight back to the ruthless sun.

 Another benefit of chaas is that it acts as  a digestive in summer and keeps stomach cool and healthy. It not only removes toxins from the body but also cool down the system. You could add garnishing like mint or coriander leaves to make it according to your taste. Can’t think of any drink healthier than this. So engage your children this summer vacation by asking them to prepare this super easy summer drink which is also good for digestion !

Ingredients:
2 cups Yogurt
1 cup Chilled water
1 tsp Roasted Cumin powder
1 tsp Black Salt or adjust it according to your taste
1 tbsp Chopped fresh Coriander leaves
Few Ice cubes

Method:

Combine all the above ingredients in a large bowl except Coriander leaves and with the help of a beater beat until its frothy. Now add in the coriander leaves and ice cubes. Serve in 2 large glasses or small 4 glasses. Garnish with roasted cumin powder and enjoy this refreshing summer drink !

read more.. "How to Make Salted Chaas / Chaach | Indian Summer Drink"

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Shikanji - Indian Lemonade


Summer Vacations are here ! Means that time of the year when we can have Ice-creams, Kulfis, Shikanji, Orange pop sticks without any roktok (stoppage). So today's post is about my favorite refreshing drink which is very famous in North India -Shikanji ! A healthy refreshing drink with an addition of lemon, cumin powder and kala nanak. Outside any Office gate, school or college you are sure to find a thelawala selling Shikanji for mere Rs. 5 ! Easy on your pocket too you see !


Summer is spreading it’s tentacles and to avoid getting dehydrated and refresh your senses there is nothing more effective than a large glass of fresh lemonade or “Shikanji ". Although there are canned and concentrated drinks available in the market, but you are never sure of what ingredients are being applied to enhance it’s taste or prolong it’s packed life. Lime being best source of Vitamin C protects body from various skin related diseases. So go ahead and enjoy a hot summer with ease.
If you want to check few more Summer special drinks then click on Papaya Orange Juice, Pomegranate Virgin Mojito, Honeydew Melon Juice, Fresh Black Grape Juice, Strawberry Milkshake

Ingredients:
2 Lemons, soak them in warm water for 10-15 minutes
Soda / Sprite, chilled Or you can use chilled water instead
3 tbsp Sugar OR as required + 3 tbsp Water {Stir until dissolved}
1 tsp Roasted Cumin powder (jeera powder)
1/2 tsp Black Salt
1/4 tsp Ginger powder
Few Mint leaves
A few Ice cubes

Method:
Roll the lemons over your kitchen counter by slightly pressing them down. This actually helps them to release their juice. Slice the lemons and discard the seeds. Squeeze the juice with the help of your hand and keep aside. 

Add the syrup in your pitcher followed by ice cubes, lemon juice, black salt, cumin powder, ginger powder, and add sprite. Give a nice stir, taste and adjust sugar /lemon juice as per your liking. Pour into glasses, garnish it with mint leaves. Serve it chilled by adding a slice of lemon. Enjoy Desi Lemonade !!!

read more.. "Shikanji - Indian Lemonade"

Monday, March 23, 2015

Nutella Mousse With Kiwi | Easy Shot Glass Dessert


I cannot even put into words my love for Nutella ! Today I'm going to share Nutella Mousse with Kiwi Dessert which has saved me in various occasions.
Sometimes I ask myself, do I have any “go to” recipe to please my guests when I'm pressed for time. Being a homebaker I always have Heavy cream in my freezer section and Nutella is again one such important part of my life that I can never run out of it ;-)

 Many a times my Nutella Mousse has come to my rescue. It has provided in World cup terms a solid finisher with a six for the guests so much so that first by the look it is attractive as most of us eat with our eyes first, it is a treat to watch the smiles on the faces of guests.

Ingredients:
1 cup Heavy cream
1/2 cup Nutella
3-4 Kiwis
You can decorate it with strawberries 

Serving tips: You need to chill it for 5-6 hours before serving.

Method: Take a big bowl and beater, pop it in the freezer section for 15 minutes. In between wash the kiwi fruit gently, remove the skin with a sharp knife and cut the kiwis into two halves in the horizontal direction. And then slice the fruit from top to bottom in the same direction. Keep aside. Beat a cup of heavy cream until it is light and fluffy. Add nutella and continue to beat until thoroughly combined. 

Place the Kiwi slices in the shot glasses, fill a pastry bag with Nutella Mousse and fill the glasses. Chill for 5-6 hours. TaDaa ! Your easy shot glass Nutella Mousse is ready !

read more.. " Nutella Mousse With Kiwi | Easy Shot Glass Dessert"

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Magnum Launches 'Choco-Cappucciono' in Chennai



Let me confess in the beginning that I like ice creams although not to that extent that I would crave for it after every meal or otherwise. However, when World renowned luxury ice cream brand invited me for a launch and review of their latest offering Choc√≥ Cappuccino, I simply had to attend it. Magnum ice creams, Unilever’s premium ice cream brand launched its fourth variant, Magnum Choco Cappuccino recently in Chennai. Prepared by a heavenly mix  of coffee & chocolate, Magnum Choco-Cappuccino is made up of creamy vanilla ice cream, blended with swirls of smooth cappuccino sauce covered in thick cracking Belgian chocolate coated with sweet crunchy pieces that  provides crunchiness with every bite.

Another motivating factor was coming together of two internationally acclaimed culinary professionals. One was an authority in Barista and coffee based delicacies Mr.Fritz Storm and another was Asia’s best pastry chef Ms. Janice Wong. All of us who attended the meet thank our lucky stars to witness such an awesome display of teamwork between two through professionals to blend together coffee and chocolate in a seamless fashion.

While Mr. Storm, gave us up close demo of the craftwork involved in  coffee and brewing, discussing coffee production, its selection, quality and local coffee while also sharing a few handy tips on how to create the perfect brew at home, Ms. Wong spoke about the goodness of chocolate, in the meantime blending unusual ingredients together to create desserts that are not only unique in taste but also look like work of art.

Throughout the session they kept us in splits while demonstrating their skills in preparing desserts like Mocha Martini, Chocolate Champagne etc. Finally when I had a taste of Choc√≥ Cappuccino, I felt absolute bliss. I can assure that this is the best ice cream that I had in ages. Ending the session on a high note, the masters came together to co-create their own Magnum inspired desserts made by fusing rich Belgian chocolate and aromatic coffee along with different scrumptious toppings. 

 Moreover, special thanks to Ms. Kiran Rao owner of the venue Amethyst gives a Shangri-La like ambiance in midst of all the hustle and bustle of Chennai. Overall I could see the glint in the eyes of the attendees and after the end of the program there was an unanimity that this ice cream would be a hit amongst everyone. Now let the pictures to all the talking.

read more.. "Magnum Launches 'Choco-Cappucciono' in Chennai"

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Veg Pulao Recipe | Paneer Pulao



This is perhaps one of the very favorite tiffin item for my son. He loves paneer in any form, be it Paneer paratha, Paneer sandwich, Paneer cutlets or you name it ! Nowadays he comes back from his school and gives me feedback how his friends shared his tiffin box and licked till the last grain. The paneer pulao is very easy to make and one pot meal. 

Ingredients:
1 cup Basmati rice
250 gms Paneer
150 gm French beans, thin strips
1/2 cup Green peas
1-2 Green chilies (optional)
2-3 Green Cardamoms
1 Star Anise 
1 inch Cinnamon stick
Salt and pepper powder according to your taste
Handful of coriander leaves
2 tbsp Sunflower oil + 1tbsp Ghee

Method:
Rinse and soak basmati rice for half an hour. Drain out the excess water and keep aside.
In a non stick kadai add 2 tsp oil, shallow fry paneer pieces with a sprinkle of salt and keep aside. 

In the same kadai, add remaining oil and throw in the garam masalas (cardamoms, star anise, cinnamon stick) fry till it leaves nice aroma. Add beans, carrot and sprinkle some salt and pepper. On medium flame keep stirring the vegetables for 2 minutes or till the raw smell goes off. Add green peas, stir fry for a minute and then add rice.  Add 2 cups of water sprinkle some salt and pepper and combine well. Cover and simmer for 12-15 minutes. Remove from fire, add the fried paneer pieces, fluff the pulao carefully with a fork and add ghee. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves. Paneer Pulao is ready to be served with Chilly Chicken or Chilly Tofu. We had this rice with Cucumber Raita.


read more.. "Veg Pulao Recipe | Paneer Pulao "

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Coffee Cupcakes With Cream Cheese Frosting | Easy Baking Recipes


Valentine day just passed round the corner. It’s been quite a while in last 12 years of my married life that we went out to this occasion. However this time around my hubby insisted that we visit nearby Phoenix mall to listen to music concert played over there. So late in evening we went over there and instead of taking our seat my husband took me to the basement departmental store and presented me two nonstick frying pans, which I was longing to buy. So this was indeed a surprise for me. After that we went up and watched a couple of performances. A Kathak based fusion and another DJ who flown in from US to entertain us. So overall it was a great evening and the zest was still on after so many years.
Had made these absolutely delicious coffee flavour cupcakes for the occasion. The frosting was cream cheese with a strawberry on top. Needless to say my man was happy to gobble them up.

Ingredients:
1/2 cup Butter
1 cup Brown sugar
1 +1/2 cups All purpose Flour
1/4 cup Cocoa powder (dutch process)
1 tsp Baking powder
1/2 tsp Baking soda
2 Eggs, room temperature
1 cup brewed coffee, room temperature
1/2 cup mini Chocolate chips
Pinch of salt

Method:
Pre-heat the Oven to 180 Degree Celsius. Line the cupcake tray with the cup liners. 
In a large mixing bowl sift together all the dry ingredients twice. Keep aside.
Cream butter and sugar by a hand blender on low speed for 3-4 minutes. In the same bowl, beat one egg at a time with blender till it is fluffy, then add another. Add brewed coffee and stir well. 

Slowly pour chocolate chips and lightly mix with a spatula. Spoon the mixture into prepared tins (they swell beautifully so fill only 3/4) and bake  for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a cupcakes comes out clean. Remove from Oven and cool on wire racks. 

For Cream Cheese Frosting : Take 1 cup Cream cheese, 1 cup powdered sugar, 2 tsp Vanilla extract, 1 cup cold heavy Cream. Beat the cream cheese until smooth, sift the sugar into the bowl and beat to combine. Add vanilla extract and mix well. Scrape down any cream cheese from the sides of the bowl. In another bowl beat heavy cream at medium speed for 4-5 minutes or until you get soft and firm peaks. With a spatula mix heavy cream with cream cheese. Transfer the frosting to a piping bag and decorate as you want. I added strawberries on top as we are having them in abundance.
read more.. "Coffee Cupcakes With Cream Cheese Frosting | Easy Baking Recipes"

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Bata Maach Shorshe Diye | Bata Fish in Mustard Sauce


Ingredients:
6-7 Bata fish, cleaned and washed
4 tbsp Mustard seeds (I used yellow seeds)
1 tbsp Vinegar 
3-4 Green chilies 
A pinch of Onion seeds
1/2 tsp Turmeric powder + a big pinch for marinating
2 tbsp grated Coconut (optional)
3 tbsp Mustard oil, strictly mustard oil as no other oil will do justice to this dish
1/2 Water
Salt to taste

Method:
Soak mustard seeds and vinegar in a small bowl in warm water for half an hour. Grind the mustard with a green chili (or you can add according to your preference) and a pinch of salt at the time of grinding. 

You may add 1-2 tsp water if the mixture is too dry while grinding. Now add 1/2 cup of water, salt and turmeric powder in it and keep aside Marinate fish pieces with some salt, turmeric and red chilly powder. Keep aside for 15 minutes.

Heat a part of mustard oil in a flat pan and fry fish pieces one at a time on low flame till light brown and keep aside. 

Discard the oil in which you fried the fishes, heat fresh oil. Now add onion seeds and few green chilies into the hot oil and when the seeds splutters, add mustard paste.

 Cover the pan for 2-3 minutes and then add fried fishes. Simmer for 3-4 minutes and turn off the flame.

 For more pungent flavour you may add raw mustard oil over the final dish. Serve with plain rice.

read more.. "Bata Maach Shorshe Diye | Bata Fish in Mustard Sauce"