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.
 

Mozarella Stuffed Mini Buns

So the much elusive monsoon finally arrived in the city. Not sure this respite is for how long but atleast the temperatures have dipped a little and that makes us all feel better. With my little boy back in school, I am left with a lot of time to myself. My 8 yr old soccer fan has opted to join his school soccer club which means he gets back home only early evening. So the mother doesn’t know what to do with so much time! Ironical I would say, there was a time I would itch to get my time off from the toddler but now I miss him all the while he’s in school. Anyways, so the next best that I do is try out new things in my kitchen and I intend to dedicate a lot of my time to blogging.

These Mozarella Stuffed Mini Buns are a perfect accompaniment to your evening tea or even as a snack in your kids lunchbox. It stays well for a couple of days and you can serve them warm.

mozarella mini uns main

 

I don’t need to tell you again that baking is therapeutic but I do need to let you know that I find these adult colouring books extremely soothing too! They calm me down and helps me focus , which is a good thing considering how impatient I can get at times. So there, that’s is how I am trying to constructively put my time to good use.

moarella mini buns 1

Mozarella Stuffed Mini Buns
Author: 
Recipe type: Bread
 
Bite size cheese stuffed buns
Ingredients
  • Plain flour - 2 cups + little for dusting
  • Dry yeast or Fast action yeast - 2 tsp
  • Sugar - 1 tsp
  • Salt - 1 tsp
  • Dried herbs - 1 tbsp. - a mix of thyme, rosemary and dill
  • Milk - 1 cup at room temperature
  • Olive oil - 2 tbsp.
  • Mozarella cheese - cut into small cubes
  • Olives / Cherry tomatoes - for garnish
  • Egg - 1 - lightly beaten - for glaze
Instructions
  1. Making the dough:
  2. In a bowl add the flour, yeast, sugar, salt and the dried herbs. Make a little well and gradually add the milk and roll into a dough. Add the oil.
  3. Rest the dough for 10 mins.
  4. Take the dough on a dusted surface and knead into a small ball. This will take rouhly 8 to10 mins.
  5. Put in an oiled bowl, cover with a cling wrap and let it rise in a warm place. I usually rest it inside the oven or microwave.
  6. After an hour approx. , the dough would have risen in size.
  7. Take it out on a dusted surface again and knock the air out gently.
  8. Roll into a long log and divide into 10- 12 equal portions.
  9. Make each portion a little flat on your palm, stuff with a small piece of mozzarella and roll into a small round bun.
  10. Lay the little roundels on a lined and greased baking tray.
  11. Top with some olives and rest it again for 10- 15 mins.
  12. Brush with some beaten egg and bake the buns in a preheated oven at 200 deg C for 15 mins.
  13. Serve fresh and warm.
 

Burnt Aubergine Dip #cookfromacookbook series

Much before I became a food blogger, I have been a cookbook lover. I remember spending hours pouring over the many cookbooks that Maa possessed, even Sananda, a Bengali monthly which was a treasure trove of recipes, going through the ingredients, trying to imagine the dish in my head and then sometimes experimenting them in the kitchen. My favourite was a Bengali recipe book,more a bible, that had every possible recipe gifted by our Bangladeshi neighbour. The books is in tatters now, still very special. I am hoping Maa will pass it down to me one day! Thankfully this love for cookbook has remained and now I am myself a very proud owner of a worthy collection. Thanks to the many online portals, you can now own your favourite book with just a click! And I am a compulsive buyer when it comes to books – especially food memoirs. With a steady growing stash , I thought it only made sense that I share what I read and cook from it with my readers. So, hereby I start a #cookfromcookbook series that will have me sharing my favourite authors and their creations that I recreate in my kitchen.

Yotam Ottolenghi – a name resonant in the British culinary scene , a chef and cookbook writer with strong Mediterranean roots that reflects deeply in his recipes. I have been following him on the social media for a while now and only very recently got hold of his book ‘Plenty’ a collection of vegetarian recipes or “new vegetarianism” as he calls it. With every new test recipe that he Instagrams,I would go gushing over the use of everyday ingredients and how it is so doable in your very own kitchens. His book Plenty has plenty recipes that can be made a part of your everyday meals. He picks up one favourite ingredient and builds a recipe around it. Much like what we do too. I have been eyeing the Burnt Aubergine Dip with Tahini and finally ended up making it too. A very flavorful condiment that can be served with cut vegetables or even as a refreshing salad in summers.

aubergine salad 1I keep going back to the book looking for inspirations in my everyday cooking and I am sure I will cooking a lot more from this one. The recipe I am sharing today is broadly inspired from the original as I have replaced a few ingredients based on availabitiy. Instead of parsley I used fresh coriander and added some red chillies for the zing.

auergine salad

Ottolenghi and his Burnt Aubergine Dip
Author: 
Recipe type: Dips and Salads
Cuisine: Mediterranean
 
A summery dip made with roasted brinjals.
Ingredients
  • Aubergine/Brinjal - 1 large
  • Tahini paste - 2 tbsp.
  • Water - 1 tbsp.
  • Lemon juice - 1 tbsp.
  • Garlic cloves - 1 - crushed
  • Fresh coriander - a handful - chopped
  • Green chilies/ red chilies - 1 -2 finely chopped
  • Tomato - 1 large - chopped
  • Pomegranate seeds - 1 tbsp.
  • Oilve oil - for garnish
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. First, roast the brinjal, with the skin on the gas stove, like we do for Indian bhartas. This can be done in the oven too. But make sure to make deep gashes on the brinjal and smear with some oil, or else it will burst.
  2. Remove the charred skin from the brinjal, scoop out the flesh.
  3. Chop the flesh roughly and transfer to a medium mixing bowl.
  4. Add the tahini paste, water,lemon juice,garlic, coriander , salt and pepper.
  5. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  6. Mix in the chopped tomatoes and chilies.
  7. Garnish with pomegranate seeds.
  8. Serve with pita or crackers.
 

Pan Fried Chicken Tikkas

Nothing like quick fix recipes. Recipes that however do not compromise on taste and freshness! My endeavour is to share with my readers, recipes that don’t need you to slog it out in the kitchen. Well, of course there are some dishes that have no shortcut but for the rest if there is a way, then why not?! With the dreaded summers fast approaching, we all like to keep it simple and easy. This Pan Fried Chicken Tikka recipe is perfect to make. Only requires a good marination and quicky fry. They could even be made in the oven.

panfried chicken tikkas 1

A perfect accompaniment to go with drinks for an evening with friends. With the cricket season on, I am sure all of us are having  lot of sessions bonding with friends. Make this for you next adda and wow your guests. Serve with a simple green salad, a fresh raita, some green chutney and a squirt of lime!

panfried chicken

Pan Fried Chicken Tikkas
Author: 
Recipe type: Starters , Snacks
Cuisine: Indian
 
Super easy , chicken tikkas
Ingredients
  • Boneless chicken - 250 gms- cut into chunks - If possible use a mix of breast and thigh pieces.
  • Curd / Yogurt - 2 tbsp.
  • Ginger - Garlic paste - 1 tbsp.
  • Kashmiri red chili powder - 1tbsp
  • Besan/ chick pea flour - 1 tbsp
  • Garam Masala powder - 1 tbsp.
  • Salt - to taste
  • Lime juice - 1 tbsp.
  • Ghee - 1 tsp
  • Refined oil - 1 tsp
Instructions
  1. Mix the chicken cubes with all the above mentioned ingredients except the refined oil.
  2. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for atleast 4 hrs or even overnight.
  3. In a non stick pan, heat the refined oil.
  4. Add the chicken pieces along with the marinade.
  5. Cover and let it cook. This will take around 15-20 mins.
  6. Once the water has all dried up and chicken cooked through.
  7. Remove from heat and serve with salad and raita.
  8. You can also string the pieces on a wooden skewer before serving.
 

Oats Aloo Tikki Chaat

Spring hardly showed up and summer is already here! I cant even bear to think how I am going to cope up with Calcutta summers. Random rantings ! But one thing I know is that I am going to rustle up a lot of yogurt based dishes to keep us cool all along. This Oats Aloo Tikki Chaat is a healthier spin on your regular tikkis. With the goodness of oats incorporated into this dish you wont feel as much guilty indulging into your favourite chaat. Also I have shallow fried the tikkis, so a little more solace there.

aloo tikki chaat 1Theres not really much to this recipe. You just need to put together the cutlets and then serve it along with your favourite condiments. I used the staple tamarind chutney, pudina chutney and some bhujias for crispiness.

aloo tikki chaat

Oats Aloo Tikki Chaat
Author: 
Recipe type: snacks
Cuisine: Indian
 
spicy tangy tasty aloo tikki chaat
Ingredients
  • Potatoes - 1 large - boiled and mashed
  • Brown bread slices - 2 slices
  • Oats - 1 cup - soaked in warm water for 15 mins - drain the water after 15 mins and keep aside
  • Refined oil - 2 tbsp.
  • Yogurt - 1 cup
  • Tamarind chutney - few tbsp.
  • Pudina chutney - few tbsp.
  • Fresh coriander - chopped - a handful
  • Roasted cumin powder - 1 tbsp. + 1 tbsp
  • Salt - to taste
  • Sugar - a pinch
  • Bhujia /sev- a handful - for garnish
Instructions
  1. First the tikkis:
  2. Mash together boiled potato, brown bread slices and soaked oats.
  3. Season with salt and roasted cumin powder.
  4. Roll out into small cutlets, the size of tikkis.
  5. Heat oil in a pan and shallow fry the tikkis, till brown in colour.
  6. Take them out of the pan and keep on a kitchen towel.
  7. Next prepare the yogurt.
  8. In a bowl take the yogurt, add a little water to thin it out.
  9. Season with salt, sugar and roasted cumin powder.
  10. You can also add chopped green chilis.
  11. To serve:
  12. Place the tikkis in serving plate.
  13. Pour the yogurt mixture on top.
  14. Add the tamarind chutney,pudina chutney ,fresh coriander .
  15. Garnish with bhujia/sev and serve.