Strawberry Delight

Did you know? Strawberries are synonymous with Wimbledon. During the tennis championship thousands of spectators munch on the event’s signature snack; strawberries and cream. The tradition dates back to the time of first Wimbledon tournament in 1877. It is said that both – the berry and the championship – signals the arrival of summer. Today these juicy berries might be available all round the year, but during 1800’s it was only available during the summer and when the championship started in the late 1800’s it was considered a fashionable thing to eat.

Strawberry Delight
Following preparation will serve 2.

Ingredients –

½ cup strawberries chopped
2 scoops of strawberry ice cream
50 ml of cream
2 table spoon of caster sugar
2 drops of vanilla essence
1 strawberry sliced into two half

Method –

Whip the cream until its thick. Add 1 ½ tablespoon sugar and vanilla essence in the cream and mix gently. Mix the remaining sugar with chopped strawberries and keep it in the refrigerator. Now layer the above mixture in a glass; stating with chopped strawberries and sugar mix at the bottom, strawberry ice cream in the middle and top it up with whipped cream. Garnish with sliced strawberry and serve chilled.

With just a little twist, you can turn a boring regular ice cream into a new exotic desert. You may also replace the strawberries with any other fruit and enjoy your ice cream. Hope you will enjoy the strawberry delight and Wimbledon this season. See you soon with another recipe, till then happy cooking.


Apple & Lettuce Salad

Yesterday I got a very unique demand from my sister; she wanted to have something healthy yet tasty. She is a health freak and avoids junk food and thus, I had to surrender to her demand. I scanned my fridge and thought what could be better than a salad for her. So there it was an Apple & Lettuce salad, because apple contains no fat, sodium or cholesterol and is a good source of fiber. Needless to say my sister relished this healthy and tasty salad.

Here is how I prepared it.

Following preparation will serve 2.

Ingredients –
2 large apples diced in cubes
1 cup iceberg lettuce chopped in cubes
3 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon mixed herbs

Method –
Mix apple, sugar, salt, lemon zest, lemon juice, mixed herbs and mayonnaise in a bowl and refrigerate for 5 minutes. Add lettuce only when you have to serve or else it will lose its crunch. Mix all the ingredients well and check the seasoning, add salt and sugar if required as per your taste. Sprinkle a pinch of mixed herbs on top and serve cold with nacho chips or tortilla.

You can also serve this salad with barbeque or kebabs. Hope you enjoyed reading this recipe. I am looking forward to hear from you soon, till then happy cooking.

Chicken Biryani

Few days back I woke up to see the city drenched by showers. It marked the arrival of monsoon and I decided to celebrate the rain with something exclusive. So, I treated my husband and myself with the very popular recipe of Mughlai cuisine – Biryani, and it was totally worth it.

Chicken Biryani
Here is how I cooked it and treated myself –

Following preparation will serve 4.

Ingredients –
500 gm chicken
1 ½ cup basmati rice
10 green cardamom
20 Black peppercorns
2 Bay leaves
2 Black cardamom
3 Inch stick cinnamon
10 cloves
½ teaspoon caraway seeds
1 tablespoon garlic paste
1 tablespoon ginger paste
5 large onion sliced
1 ½ tablespoon red chilli powder
½ tablespoon turmeric powder
1 cup yogurt
Handful of fresh coriander and mint leaves chopped
4 teaspoon clarified butter (ghee)
2 tablespoon oil
A pinch of saffron mixed in ¼ cup warm milk
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 hard boiled eggs
Salt to taste

Method –
In a deep bottomed pan, heat six cups of water and put washed and drained rice, green cardamoms, bay leaves, 8-black peppercorns, single cinnamon stick, 1 black cardamom, 1 ½ tablespoon salt and 2 tablespoon oil. Cook till it is half done. Drain and set aside.

Heat oil in a wok (kadhai) and deep-fry half of the sliced onions till golden brown. Drain and keep it aside.

For Biryani Masala –
Grind single cinnamon stick, caraway seeds, remaining black peppercorns, remaining green cardamoms and cloves to a powder. This is the biryani masala.

For the Marinade –
Put chicken in a bowl and add garlic paste, ginger paste, salt to taste, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, biryani masala, yogurt, half the fried onions, one tablespoon oil and half of the coriander & mint leaves. Mix it well and allow it to marinate for 2 hours in the refrigerator.

In a pan, heat 2 tablespoon clarified butter (ghee) and put the remaining black cardamom and cinnamon and sauté until it leaves aroma. Now add remaining onions and then sauté until golden brown. Add the marinated chicken in the onion and stir well and cook over high flame for four to five minutes. Check the seasoning and add salt if needed. Put the lid on and lower the flame. Cook until the chicken is done.

For Layering of Biryani –
In a thick bottom pan, heat the leftover clarified butter (ghee) and spread half of the chicken in a layer. Now make a layer of rice over it. Sprinkle chopped mint & coriander leaves, 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Repeat with the layer of leftover chicken and again with leftover rice. Pour saffron milk over it. Cove the lid and let it cook on low flame for 10 minutes. Turn off the flame, but let it be covered for 10 more minutes. Remove the lid, sprinkle remaining fried onions and boiled eggs and serve hot.

Vegetable Pancakes

Few days back I met one of my friends after a long long time. We were so busy chit Chatting with each other that we even forgot to have lunch. It was late afternoon when we realised we must eat something. So we rushed to the kitchen and decided to make some vegetable pancakes. We found that there was no flour in the kitchen, so I thought why not try making pancakes with semolina; and to our surprise, it turned out to be great.

Here is how we cooked it.

Following preparation will make 4 medium size pancakes.

Ingredients –

1 cup Semolina (Suji/Rawa)
½ cup whipped yogurt (Dahi)
1 cup vegetables finely chopped (onion, green, yellow & red capsicum, tomato, carrot, peas)
1 teaspoon roughly crushed cumin (Zeera)
½ a teaspoon ginger paste
1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves
2 green chillies finely chopped (adjust to taste)
Salt to taste
Oil for cooking pancakes

Method –

Mix semolina, yogurt, chopped vegetables, coriander leaves, chillies, crushed cumin, ginger paste and salt with half a cup of water. Leave the mixture to rest for 10-15 minutes. If you think the mixture has dried up, then you can add water as much as required. It should have a consistency of a cake batter. Heat a teaspoon of oil in a non stick pan and pour some mixture with the help of a spoon and spread it to make thin pancakes. Big or small you can decide the size of the pancakes as per your choice. Cook it for 3-5 minutes each side on medium heat. Serve hot with any sauce of our choice.

If you want your kids to eat vegetables then these colourful pancakes are a good choice. Do let me know if you enjoy cooking it. See you soon with another recipe, till then happy cooking!

Corn Roll

Just the other evening while I was relaxing and enjoying the spectacular view of sunset from my balcony, I got a call from my friends. They said they are near my building and would like to drop by for some chit chat with a cup of coffee. I immediately rushed to the kitchen so that I could prepare some light snacks with coffee. So, I picked boiled potato and sweet corn, because they cook fast and you can never go wrong with the combination of these two. Needless to say, we had a great evening with some crispy corn rolls and a nice hot cup of coffee.

Corn Roll
Here is how its cooked.

Following preparation will make 6 rolls.

Ingredients –

1 cup sweet corn, boiled & finely crushed
1 large potato, boiled
1 green chilli chopped
1 teaspoon red chilli flakes
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
½ teaspoon grated ginger
6 small cubes of cheese or paneer
A generous pinch of mixed herbs or oregano
2 tablespoon corn flour
½ cup cornflakes crushed or bread crumbs
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

Method –

Peal and mash potato in a bowl and add crushed corn, salt, mayonnaise, mixed herbs, ginger, chilli flakes, chopped green chillies, lemon juice and mix well. Divide this mixture into six portions, fill each portion with cheese or paneer cubes. Shape them in round or oval as you like with damp hands. Refrigerate the rolls for 5-10 minutes.

Mix corn flour in half a cup of water, dip the rolls in this mixture and coat it with crushed cornflakes. To make the rolls crisper you can repeat the coating process. Refrigerate the rolls again for 5 minutes so that it sets properly. Heat oil in a pan and deep fry the rolls on medium heat till it turns golden brown. Drain on an absorbent paper and serve hot with any sauce of your choice.

To avoid deep frying, you can shape the potato and corn mixture into round patties, coat them as mentioned above and shallow fry on both sides till evenly golden brown.

Hope you enjoyed reading this, would love to hear from you. See you soon with another recipe, till then happy cooking.