Mango Pot de Creme

This recipe has been lying in my drafts from last, so you know how lazy I have been. The summer vacations are over and we are settling down in our everyday routines.The monsoons are also here,so are the mangoes! What better time than this to make this easy dessert at home. It requires just 3 ingredients!

mango pot de creme main

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Mango Pot de Creme
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
 
Super easy mango dessert!
Ingredients
  • Mango puree - 2 cups
  • Fresh cream - 1 cup - I used Amul low fat cream
  • Condensed milk - 4 tbsp
  • Gelatin - 1 tsp
  • Rose petals/ Mint leaves - to garnish
Instructions
  1. First bloom the gelatin.
  2. In a bowl soak the gelatin in cold water for 10 mins. Microwave for 5 sec at high. Keep aside.
  3. Mix together the mango puree, condensed milk and cream till creamy.
  4. Add the gelatin and mix gently.
  5. Fill up cups/bowls with this mixture and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  6. Serve, garnished with rose petals / mint leaves and some chopped mangoes on top.
 

Butter Chicken

When I moved to the City Of Joy 12 yrs ago ( unbeliveable) the one thing I craved the most was a plate of decent Butter Chicken – quite a staple after having spent almost 7 yrs in saadi dilli! Unfortunately, Kolkata, back then did not have too many , rather hardly had any place that made proper butter chicken ( the one that gives you the feel kinds!). Hence started my quest to try various versions of the Buttter Chicken recipes at home. Over the years many trials happened in my kitchen but none could make the cut honestly. Lot of trials and errors later, I am somewhat satisfied with this precious recipe that I am going to share with you today. My 9 yr old has also turned into a BC (Butter Chicken) fan so this is one dish I make often. It is also my party staple simply coz its too easy to make with ingredients just thrown in. A few of my readers have also requested me for my version of the dish, so here goes.

butter chicken

Butter Chicken
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Indian
 
Silky smooth decadent chicken dish in a tomato based gravy
Ingredients
  • For the chicken :
  • Chicken Boneless or on the bone ( as preffered) - 500 gms
  • Chili powder - 1 tsp
  • Salt - 1 tsp
  • Ginger garlic paste - 1 tbsp
  • Mustard oil - 1 tbsp
  • For the gravy:
  • Tomatoes - 4 large - roughly chopped
  • Onion - 1 large - roughly chopped
  • Ginger - garlic paste - 1 tsp
  • Garam Masala powder - 1 tsp
  • Tomato puree - 2 tbsp
  • Cashews - a handful
  • Kashmiri chili powder - 1 tbsp
  • Kasoori methi - a littel - soaked in warm water
  • Sugar - 1 tsp
  • Butter - 1tbsp
  • Fresh cream - 1 tsp - optional
Instructions
  1. Marinate the chicken pieces with chili powder, ginger garlic paste, salt and mustard oil. Keep aside for an hour.
  2. Line a baking tray, grill/bake the chicken pieces at 250 deg C in the oven for 15 to 20 mins till slightly charred.
  3. Keep aside.
  4. Making the gravy:
  5. In a pan, heat some butter. Add the chopped onions along with the ginger garlic paste.
  6. Saute till fragrant. Tip in the chopped tomatoes, tomato puree, cashews, chili powder, salt and sugar.
  7. Cook till the tomatoes are soft and mushy.
  8. At this point, add half a cup of warm water if reqd to loosen the gravy.
  9. Add the garam masala powder. Cover the pan and cook for 10 mins.
  10. Let the mixture cool and then grind it into a smooth paste.
  11. Return the gravy to the pan, add the cooked chicken pieces.
  12. Cover and let it simmer for 5 to 7 mins.
  13. Add the cream and kasoori methi. Give it a stir, remove from heat.
  14. Garnish with some more cream and kasoori methi.Serve hot.
 

Noodle Bowl with Chicken Broth

This Noodle bowl with Chicken Broth is just perfect for a quick meal. The heat is already killing us , so we all need easy recipes that can be tossed with very little preps. Once in a while when we need a break from our usual dishes, this is good to go.Noodle bowl 1I used whatever veggies along with chicken were available at home but you could add anything that you wish to. The vegetarians can replace chicken with tofu, turns out extremely well. The noodles i used is the thick – egg noodle variety that I picked from my last trip to new market. Maybe i should write a post on my absolute love for New Market. Have been going there ever since I was a kid and still find is as charming! Unfortunately its the other end of town for me, but then thats no detterent.

Noodle Bowl with Chicken Broth
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Chinese - Asian
 
Easy one pot meals
Ingredients
  • Egg noodles - 1 pack - boiled and drained
  • Chicken - 200 gms - boneless, cut into small chunks - i used boneless leg piece
  • Carrot - 1 cup - diced or sliced
  • Red bell pepper - ½ cup - diced
  • Cauliflower - ½ cup - cut into florets
  • Onion - 1 medium - diced
  • Ginger - garlic - 1 tsp each- finely chopped
  • Light soy sauce - 1 tsp
  • Vinegar - 1 tsp
  • Veg/chicken stock - 2 cups
  • Refined oil - 1 tbsp
  • Cornflour - 1 tsp - mixed with a little water
  • Salt - to taste
  • Pepper - to taste
Instructions
  1. Boil the noodles as per instruction on the pack. Drain and keep aside.
  2. Blanch the diced carrots and cauliflower in hot water. Drain and keep aside.
  3. In a pan, heat oil.
  4. Saute the onion along with the ginger garlic.
  5. Add the chicken pieces. Fry till browned.
  6. Add the carrots and cauliflower.
  7. Next tip in the diced bell pepper.
  8. Add light soy sauce,vinegar, salt and pepper.
  9. Add the chicken /veg stock.
  10. Cover and let simmer for 5 mins.
  11. Make a cornflour slurry and add it to the pan.
  12. Once the gravy thickens. Remove from heat.
  13. Garnish with chopped green chilies, fresh coriander and spring onions.
 

Maldouf – An Omani Flatbread with Dates

So I have been cooking up from this amazing cookbook – The Food of Oman – by Felicia Campbell and it has been such a delight. You can read all about it here. I tried an unique flatbrad recipe that uses date puree in its dough lending the bread mild and delicious sweetness. It pairs beautifully with Kuku Paaka – Omani chicken stew and is very easy to make.

maldoufMuch like our favourite parathas but still a bit different. The use of dates lends a lovely texture and flavour to the flat bread, The cuisine of Oman has been a revelation to me, the use of ingredients so similar to ours yet being treated in a manner not quite known to us.I guess thats the beauty of food and that is how its connects us all.

Maldouf - An Omani Flatbread with Dates
Author: 
Recipe type: Breads
Cuisine: Omani
 
Flaky, deeply flavourful flat bread.
Ingredients
  • Dates - ½ cup - pitted
  • Boiling water - 1 cup
  • Flour/Maida - 2 cups
  • Salt - 1 tsp
  • Egg - 1
  • Ghee - ¼th cup and some more for frying the flatbreads
Instructions
  1. Place the dates in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Let it soak for an hour. Drain water and make a puree. Keep aside.
  2. Whisk the flour and salt in a big bowl.Stir in the egg and ghee . Slowly add the date puree and make a soft dough. Keep aside for 10 mins covered with a damp cloth.
  3. Make small balls out of the dough and roll into square or triangle shaped breads , much like our parathas.
  4. Heat a large skillet and fry the bread over medium heat till crispy.
  5. Serve with a curry of your choice.
 

Tomato Mint Pulao

Summer calls for easy clean meals that can be prepared without slogging it out in the kitchen. This Tomato Mint Pulao is a one pot meal to be rustled up in a jiffy, served with a side of raita and salad is perfect for a weekday meal.Easy clean flavours is sure to please your tastebuds!tomato mint pulaoI like making pulaos in handis or a pan as i am more confident that way but you could easily use a pressure cooker or even a rice cooker. Just the amount of water need to adjusted accordingly. Also i have used chopped tomatoes for texture but even puree would work well. Feel free to use your own discretions as that what makes it even better!

tomato mint pulao 1

Tomato Mint Pulao
Author: 
Recipe type: Rice Dish
Cuisine: Indian
 
One pot veg rice dish
Ingredients
  • Basmati rice - 1 cup - washed and soaked in water for half an hour
  • Chopped tomatoes - 2 medium
  • Ginger - 1 tbsp- grated
  • Green chillies - 1 nos - finely chopped
  • Turmeric powder- 1 tsp
  • Whole garam masala - a mix of cardamom, cinnamon and cloves - 1 tbsp
  • Bay leaf - 2 nos
  • Whole cumin - 1 tsp
  • Salt - to taste
  • Sugar - a pinch
  • Fresh mint leaves - a handful - finely chopped
  • Ghee - 1 tbsp
  • Warm water - 2 cups
Instructions
  1. In a pan/handi heat the ghee.
  2. Splutter the whole garam masala, bay leaf and whole cumin.
  3. Once fragrant, add the chopped tomatoes and grated ginger.
  4. Fry for 2 mins. Add the handful of chopped mint leaves and chopped green chilies.
  5. Next add the basmati rice and turmeric powder.
  6. Saute well for 5-7 mins till the rice changes colour.
  7. Add the warm water, salt and sugar.
  8. Cover and cook till the water is absorbed. Fulff up the rice with a fork and serve hot.
 

Oven Roasted Chili Honey Cashews

What do you do with loads of plain cashewnuts lying around in the pantry ( that you received as diwali gifts!), make some oven roasted  Chili Honey Cashews. They would go perfect as the munchies with a drink or even my 9yr olds mini snack box. The idea of course has been borrowed from my dear friend Sarani, who now lives in Mason, USA and authors the lovely blog Cocoawind.

chili honey cashewsI kept the flavours very simple, honey for sweetness, pepper and chili flakes for the punch and loads of himalayan pink salt ( yes, my current obsession). In the oven for 15 mins and the outcome, simply gorgeous!

chili honey cashews 1

Oven Roasted Chili Honey Cashews
Author: 
Recipe type: Snacks
Cuisine: World - Easy
 
Easy snack - roasted goodness
Ingredients
  • Plain Cashews - 2 cups
  • Olive oil - 1 tbsp
  • Honey - 2 tbsp
  • Freshly cracked black pepper - as per taste
  • Chili flakes - as per taste
  • Salt - to taste
  • Egg white - 1 egg
Instructions
  1. In a bowl, beat the egg whites till fluffy.
  2. Add olive oi, honey and the spices and mix well.
  3. Add the cashews and coat them well.
  4. Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  5. Put the coated cashews and bake for 15 mins at 200 deg C
  6. Let the cashews cool down before storing in air tight containers.
 

Methi Thepla

This time of the year is perfect to savour the varied winter greens available in the market. My absolutely favourite being fresh Methi saag( fenugreek leaves) and Sarson Saag ( mustard greens). I dont leave an opportunity to use fresh methi leaves as often as I can. While i would always make Aloo methi or simple methi parathas , Theplas , essentially a Gujrati flatbread is something I made for the first time. Perfect as a breakfast dish, I absolutely loved eating them.

methi theplaThe addition of a variety of spices and some gram flour to the dough gives the parathas if we may call them, even thogh they are to be rolled thinner than a paratha, a lovely soft texture. My boys are not much into parathas and would stick to their usual English breakfast, I love my desi breakfast and more so on weekends. Served with some homemade green chili pickle and yogurt, it made for a delicious treat.

methi thepla 1

Methi Thepla
Author: 
Recipe type: Breads
Cuisine: Gujrati - Indian
 
A soft spiced flatbread that is perfect as a breakfast dish served with pickle and yogurt.
Ingredients
  • Whole wheat flour? Aata - 1½ cups
  • Gram flour / Besan- ½ cup
  • Chopped onion - 1 tbsp
  • Chopped green chili - 1 tsp
  • Chopped fresh fenugreek leaves/methi leaves - 1 cup
  • Caraway/Ajwain seeds - 1 tsp
  • Cumin seeds/jeera seeds - 1 tsp
  • Salt - to taste
  • Chopped coriander leaves - 1 tbsp
  • Red chili powder - 1 tsp
  • Coriander powder - 1tsp
  • Ghee - 1 tsp + spme more to cook the theplas
  • Warm water - a cup approx to knead the dough
Instructions
  1. In a bowl mix all the ingredients listed aboved and knead into a soft using some warm water.
  2. Let the dough rest for 15 mins.
  3. Make small balls, dust in some flour and roll out very thin into round discs.
  4. They should be rolled thinner than a paratha.
  5. On a flat gridle, cook the theplas by applying ghee on both sides.
  6. Serve warm with pickle and fresh yogurt.
 

Banana Caramel Cake

The new year did not start on a very smooth note but it is on us to make it better. My resolution, rather effort from the start of the year has been to adopt a more healthy approach towards food habits and making a form of exercise a part of life. However once a while, little indulgences are allowed and hence this beautiful Banana Caramel Cake. Also needed a push to get back to blogging, hence the cake!

Fotor_148542381841150Also a great way to use up left over bananas or use them a bit differently. Served warm with some icecream or whipped cream, this could turn into a gourmet dessert.

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Banana Caramel Cake
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: English
 
A decadent Cake with bananas and caramel sauce
Ingredients
  • Banana - 1 large - cut into thin slices
  • Butter - 1 cup + 2 tbps - melted
  • Brown Sugar - 2 tbsp
  • Flour - 1 cup
  • Eggs - 2 nos
  • Castor sugar - ¾th cup
  • Baking powder - 1 tsp
  • Warm milk - 2 tbsp
Instructions
  1. First of all , line a round baking tin with parchment paper.
  2. Line the sliced bananas evenly. Keep side.
  3. In a bowl, cream together 1 cup butter and the castor sugar.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
  5. Sift the flour and baking powder together.
  6. Add it to the egg butter mixtire.
  7. Mix in gently. Add 2 tbsp warm milk to thin the batter.
  8. Keep aside.
  9. In a pan , heat the 2 tbsp butter and 2 tbsp brown sugar together.
  10. Keep on low flame, the sugar will melt and turn into a rich caramel sauce.
  11. Pour this caramel sauce over the banana lined baking dish.
  12. Let it set for 2 mins.
  13. Now pour the cake batter on top.
  14. Bake in a preheated oven at 180 Deg C for 35-40 mins.
  15. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick. If it comes out clean it is done.
  16. Demould and serve warm.
 

Festive Christmas Fruit Cake – My easy version

This dear blog of mine has been royally ignored in the past few months as I was busy setting up another baby – The Goody Box – a venture very close to my heart that my friend A and myself have started. Its an endeavor on our part to take this love for food that we have to the next level and share it with the world. You can know all about it The Goody Box here!

christmas-cake

But My Food My Life is my first love and theres always coming back to it. I remembered to soak some fruits in rum few weeks back and last evening was just perfect to bake a boozy  Christmas cake to mark the beginning of the festive season. Everyone has their own version and mine turned out to be easy and fun to make. Here’s hoping that the coming year brings in loads of positivity and good cheer for my loved ones and yes many many more recipes and food stories! You go note the recipe.

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christmas-cake

Festive Christmas Fruit Cake - My easy version
Author: 
Recipe type: Festive Dessert
Cuisine: Cakes
 
A rich boozy fruit cake
Ingredients
  • Flour - 1 cup
  • Butter - 100 gms
  • Castor sugar - 1 cup
  • Eggs - 3 nos
  • Soaked fruits - 1 cup - Mix together chopped candied peel, tutti fruti, dates, raisins , almonds in some dark rum along with a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg. Put the mixture in a glass jar and refrigerate for a week atleast.
  • Vanilla essence - 1 tsp
  • Baking powder - 1 tsp
Instructions
  1. Sift together flour and baking powder.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar till light and fluffy.
  3. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  4. Add the vanilla essence.
  5. Fold in the flour gently into a smooth mixture.
  6. Add the soaked fruit along with the liquid.
  7. Give it a mix.
  8. Bake in a pre heated oven for 35-40 mins at 175 deg C
  9. Dust with some icing sugar before serving.
 

Diwali Cheers with some Moong Dal Halwa

Diwali is here with  so much light and sparkle all around as. I had a super busy week cleaning and prepping my home for the festival. My single point focus becomes putting up lights all over my house, changing up the décor and prettying up every nook and corner. So much so that I completely ignored the food front. Now whats Diwali without some homemade sweets and finally got the time to whip up some sweet deliciousness in my kitchen. Moong Dal Halwa is something I totally love and the nip in the air calls for a bowl of hot hot halwa.

moong-dal-halwa

The best part about hoeme made sweets is that you can control the sweetness and know what exactly has gone into it so that your little ones can enjoy it without any fear. I used condensed milk instead of sugar syrup and that kind of makes it so very easy to make this dish. So don’t wait just head into the kitchen!

diwali-collage

I also take this opportunity to wish each one of you a Diwali filled with love and light. Spread joy all around you, dress up and indulge in the festivities with your friends and family coz that exactly I love to do.

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Diwali Cheers with some Moong Dal Halwa
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Indian
 
A sweet dish made with pulses that is so festive !
Ingredients
  • Moong Dal - 1 cup - washed and soaked in water for 2 hrs.
  • Ghee - 100 gms
  • Condensed milk - 1 cup
  • Cardamom powder - 1 tsp
  • Almonds - a handful - chopped finely
  • Raisins - a handful - optional
Instructions
  1. Drain the moong dal and grind into a fine paste using the mixer grinder. Make sure to use very little water while grinding.
  2. In a non stick pan, heat the ghee.
  3. Add the moong dal paste and start stirring it into the ghee.
  4. Continue to stir the mixture on low heat for atleast 15 mins till the mixture smells fragrant and the raw taste of the dal is cooked through.
  5. Keep the flame low at all times. Keep stirring once a while.
  6. The mixture with turn a nice golden colour .
  7. Add the chopped almond, raisins(if using) and cardamom powder.
  8. Now add a cup of condensed milk and stir in well.
  9. Conitnue to stir for another 5to 7 mins, till you reach the desired consistency.
  10. Don't overcook or else the halwa will go dry.
  11. Remove from heat and serve hot in little bowls.
  12. Can be reheated in the micro as and when served.