Sweet Spring rolls

I was recently craving for Baklawa, the world renowned dessert from Iran. Unfortunately, here in India we get baklawas only during Eid, so I thought why not try making it myself. But as you all know, magic happens in my kitchen when I add my little twist to any recipe. The magic combined Baklawas and Spring Rolls and that produced – Sweet Spring Rolls.

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Here is how it is prepared.

Ingredients –

10 pastry sheets or samosa patti
½ cup dry roasted and chopped dry fruits (walnuts, cashew nuts, pistachios, resins and dates)
50 gm butter
½ cup honey
1 inch stick cinnamon
1 tablespoon flour
Oil for frying
Vanilla ice cream as required

Method –

Make a thick paste of flour with water and keep aside. Take the pastry sheets (samosa patti) one at a time and fill it with chopped nuts on one side. Apply the flour and water paste on the edges and on sides and roll the sheet sealing the sides. You can also fold the sheets and give it a triangular shape or any other shapes you like. Only make sure the edges are sealed from all the sides.

Heat oil in a deep frying pan and fry the rolls on medium heat till they turn golden brown. Drain from oil and put it on kitchen towel or tissue paper so that it soaks excess oil.

In another pan melt butter on a low heat and add the cinnamon stick. Once the butter melts add honey to it. Make sure the butter does not burn. Stir for half a minute and then drop the fried rolls in the butter and honey syrup. Glaze the rolls completely with the syrup.

Serve this hot crunchy rolls drenched in a silky syrup with cold vanilla ice cream or any other ice cream of your choice.

NOTE: If you do not get pastry sheets or samosa patti, then you can simply make a stiff dough of plain flour (maida), little oil and water. Rest the dough for 15 minutes and then roll out thin strips.

I recently prepared the sweet spring rolls for my Iranian neighbour on her birthday and she got very emotional. She and her family enjoyed the dessert a lot. Try surprising your friends and loved ones with this recipe, am sure they are going to love it. Do write to me your experience, till then happy cooking 🙂

Broccoli Patties with Orange-Cinnamon Sauce

Have you ever combined 5-6 widely different ingredients (that you wouldn’t have even thought of combining together in your dreams) to dish out one lip smacking recipe? It is so much fun I tell you. Recently my mind was at its experimental best (that’s what my family thought) and I combined broccoli, orange, cinnamon, garlic and few other ingredients to prepare a delicious evening snack.


Here is how I cooked it.

Ingredients –

For Patties
1 ½ cup broccoli blanched and finely chopped
1 tablespoon basil (fresh or dries whatever is available)
5-6 cloves of garlic fried and crushed
2 large potatoes boiled and grated
½ cup processed cheese grated
2 green chillies finely chopped
½ teaspoon black pepper powder
½ teaspoon red chilli powder
7-8 rusk biscuits crushed as powder or 1 cup bread crumbs
1 tablespoon skin of orange finely chopped and fried
2-3 tablespoon refined flour (Maida)
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

For Sauce
Juice and pulp of 3 oranges
200 ml packed orange juice
2 tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon powder
A pinch of salt
A pinch of red chilli powder

Method –
Mix both orange juice (fresh and packed) & orange pulp and start reducing in a pan on medium heat. Add sugar and keep boiling till you get a thick consistency. At this stage add cinnamon powder, salt and red chilli powder and boil for another 30 seconds. Switch off the flame, keep aside and let it cool.

In another bowl add broccoli, potatoes, cheese, basil, green chillies, garlic, black pepper powder, red chilli powder, fried skin of orange, 2 tablespoons crushed rusk biscuit or bread crumb and salt. Mix everything together and make 6-7 small patties. In a small bowl mix refined flour (maida), ½ teaspoon salt and water as required and make a dip. Make sure that the dip is neither too runny nor too thick. Now coat the patties in this dip and then roll it on crushed rusk biscuit or bread crumb. Repeat the process once again and keep the patties in fridge for 10-15 minutes. Heat oil in a pan and fry the patties on medium heat till they are golden brown. Serve hot with orange-cinnamon sauce.

If you too have experimented with ingredients and prepared such interesting recipe then do share it with me. Will see you soon with another lip smacking recipes till then, happy cooking.

Egg Kadhai

This one originally is my mom’s recipe. She used to make this as a curry (Not a regular egg curry). I just added a little twist to it. However, prepared in which ever form; curry or kadhai, this recipe tastes delicious and is a must try for all egg lovers.

Egg Kadhai

Here is how it is cooked.

Ingredients –
4 eggs
3 tomatoes
1 onion finely chopped
1 green capsicum (bell pepper) diced in cubes
2 teaspoon ginger paste
2 teaspoon garlic paste
1 small piece of cinnamon
2 cloves
1 green cardamoms
2 tablespoon coriander seeds
2 dried Kashmiri red chillies
1 teaspoon dry fenugreek leaves (kasuri methi)
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon red chilli powder
1 tablespoon oil and extra for deep frying
Salt to taste
Ginger juliennes and coriander leaves for garnishing

Method –
Break and beat the eggs in a bowl for 2-3 minutes. Pour the egg mixture in a cake tin or a steamer mould and steam it till the eggs rise and are done. You can check if the eggs are done by pricking it with the help of a toothpick. If the toothpick comes out clean it means eggs are done. Take the eggs out of steamer and de-mould it carefully after cooling for 15-20 minutes. Cut the egg into pieces and shallow fry or deep fry them and keep aside.

For the kadhai masala, dry roast cinnamon, cloves, green cardamoms, coriander and Kashmiri red chillies for around 1 minute on low flame. Turn off the flame and grind the spices coarsely in a grinder.

Heat oil in a pan and add onions. Cook until it turn translucent. Add ginger-garlic paste and red chillies at this stage and sauté for 2 minutes. Add tomatoes and mix well. Cook until they turn soft and oil starts to separate. Add the spice powder and mix well. Now add capsicum and salt and cook for 2-3 minutes. Crush kasuri methi roughly and add to the mixture, now add the fried eggs and mix everything together gently. Stir fry for a couple of minutes and add finely chopped coriander leaves and ginger juliennes and turn off the flame.

Enjoy this delicious egg kadhai with naan or roti. Hope you try and like this recipe. Do write to me. Will see you soon with more recipes, till then happy cooking.

Rose Ice Cream

One day while cleaning my fridge, I realised I have rose syrup and some dried rose petals, that I had bought in summer for making a drink. I took them out and decided to make something interesting and thus, started flavouring different items with rose syrup. While doing this exercise, I poured some rose syrup in vanilla ice cream and voila I was having “Rose Ice Cream”. Super interesting and super easy to make. A must try!

Rose Ice cream

Here is how I made it.

Ingredients –
4 scoops of vanilla ice cream
4-5 tablespoon rose syrup
2 tablespoon dried rose petals
1 tablespoon rose water
2-3 tablespoon roasted nuts (cashew nuts, almonds, hazel nuts or any nut of your choice)

Method –
Mix vanilla ice cream, rose syrup, rose water, and rose petals in a bowl. Roughly chop the nuts and mix them in the ice cream mixture. Pour the mixture in a plastic container. Cover the container and put it in the freezer and let it freeze for 4-5 hours.

Once the ice cream is set, scoop them out and serve with rose syrup and chopped nuts.
I am sure you are going to enjoy making this ice cream as much as you are going to enjoy eating this. Do let me know how did you like the recipe. See you again with another recipe, till then happy cooking!

Chinese Pizza

I know it sounds bizarre to have a fusion of Chinese and Italian cuisine, which is totally different from each other in preparation and in taste. But, just one bite of this Chinese Pizza and the combination of flavours will explode in your mouth. The crispy noodles with melted cheese oozing over it, combined with the crunch of some delicious toppings. It is just wow!

Just like any other Sunday evening I was in my kitchen trying to cook something nice to celebrate the weekend and I was in two minds between pizza and noodles. That is when it clicked me, why not combine both. And there it was, an exciting pizza with some great flavours in front of me.

Pizza

Here is how I cooked it.

Ingredients –
100 grams noodles (parboiled in salted water)
6 tablespoon tomato sauce
1 tablespoon red chilli sauce
2 cloves of garlic
½ cup sliced vegetables (Onion, Green, red, yellow capsicum, black olives, deseeded tomato, sweet corn or baby corn)
¼ cup paneer or sausage cut into small pieces and fried
A handful of mozzarella or any pizza cheese you like (enough to cover pizza base)
½ teaspoon mixed herbs
½ teaspoon chilli flakes
1 table spoon butter
3 teaspoon oil
Salt to taste

Method –
Parboil noodles in six cups of water, 2 tablespoon oil and two table spoon of salt. When it is done, drain the water and keep the noodles aside. For making sauce, heat a pan and add ½ teaspoon oil add garlic and sauté for a minute, add tomato sauce, chilli sauce, mixed herbs and chilli flakes. Mix for another minute and turn off the heat. In another flat bottom non-stick pan add half the butter and sauté the vegetables for a minute and remove from heat.

In the same pan add the remaining butter and a teaspoon of oil. To make the pizza base spread the noodles in the pan cover and cook on medium heat for 5-6 minutes. Turn over the pizza base and cover and cook for 3-4 minutes on high heat. Now spread sauce, cheese and toppings on the base, cover and cook on high heat until the bottom of the pizza base becomes crispy and the cheese melts.

Slice the pizza, sprinkle oregano & chilli flakes on top and serve the Chinese pizza piping hot.

Chicken Kofta

“Where’s the party tonight” asked my brother on a Saturday. I know my brother very well and could read between the lines. I told him if he is yearning for good food then party is at home. And there he was ready with a fresh demand, “what’s new cooking today?” Chicken Kofta was the answer to his question but with an asterisk mark that he will have to help me in kitchen. Needless to say, my brother had to abide by the rules I had set, and we produced a super awesome dish.

chicken-kofta

Here is how we cooked it.

Ingredients –

For koftas
100 – 150 grams of minced chicken
2 cloves of garlic
1 inch piece of ginger
2 green chillies finely chopped
6-8 cashew nuts roughly chopped
5-6 raisins roughly chopped
1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves
A pinch of chatmasala
A pinch of roasted cumin powder
1 teaspoon black pepper powder
2 tablespoon corn flour
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

For Gravy
2 large onions
2 medium tomato
1 teaspoon garlic paste
½ teaspoon ginger paste
1 teaspoon coriander powder
½ teaspoon cumin powder
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon chilli powder (adjust to taste)
½ teaspoon garam masala powder
½ teaspoon cumin seeds
2 bay leaves
3 tablespoon cream, 1 tablespoon extra for garnishing
3 tablespoon oil
Salt to taste

Method –

Kofta
Mix cashew nuts, raisins, coriander, chillies, and a pinch of salt, chatmasala, roasted cumin powder in a bowl and keep this filling mixture aside. In another bowl take chicken mince, add grated ginger and garlic, salt, black pepper and corn flour to it and mix well. Now divide this mixture into equal portions to make lemon size balls. Stuff the cashew nut & raisins mixture in the mince balls and roll to seal the stuffing. Heat sufficient oil in a pan and deep fry the kofta balls on medium heat till it turns brown. Drain on an absorbent paper and keep them aside.

Note: If you have time, let the kofta balls set in refrigerator for 15-20 minutes before frying.

Gravy
Heat one tablespoon oil in a pan and add sliced onions. Sauté till they turn golden brown. Remove from the pan and blend it to make a smooth paste. Deseed tomatoes and blend them to make a paste. Heat two tablespoon oil in a pan, add cumin seeds and bay leaves. Now add onion paste, ginger paste, garlic paste and sauté for a couple of minutes. Add tomato paste and cook for 2-3 minutes, now add turmeric powder, chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and sauté. When the mixture is cooked or when it starts leaving the sides of the pan, add 1 ½ to 2 cups of water (as required for the gravy) salt and garam masala powder. Cover and let it simmer for a couple of minutes on low heat. Add kofta balls to the gravy simmer for 2-3 minutes on low heat. Now add cream and let it cook for another 2 minutes on low heat, and then turn off the flame. Keep it covered for five minutes and then serve.

Garnish with some cream and chopped coriander and serve hot with rice, roti, paratha or naan.

Do let me know in case you have a special request related to ingredients and recipes, I will try to help you out. See you soon with another interesting recipe, till then happy cooking.

Dalia Upma

When you are unwell you want to eat tasty food, but unfortunately your doctor suggests otherwise. Last month my health went for a toss (as you can see I did not post any blog), and I was advised to take care of myself and eat HEALTHY food. Now as we all believe that healthy food is never tasty, so I was determined to find out healthier and tastier recipes during this month. Dalia Upma happens to be one of those recipes and also my favourite. I can have it for breakfast, lunch or dinner accompanied by a bowl of fresh yogurt, and thats why I want to share this recipe with you first.

Dalia Upma

Here is how I cook it.

Following preparation will serve 4.

Ingredients –
1 cup dalia (broken wheat)
1 cup chopped vegetables (carrot, capsicum, beans, peas, tomato)
1 small onion chopped
1 tablespoon peanuts
2 green chillies chopped
2 tablespoon oil
½ teaspoon mustard seeds
8-10 curry leaves
¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
½ inch piece ginger grated
Juice of half a lemon
A pinch of asafoetida (hing)
Salt to taste

Method –
Heat oil in a pressure cooker, add mustard seeds and let it splutter. Add asafoetida curry leaves first and then add chopped onion, grated ginger, green chillies, peanuts and turmeric powder. Sauté for a minute before adding chopped vegetables. Cook all the ingredients for another minute and add dalia (broken wheat). Cook for 3-4 minutes on medium heat or till the dalia (broken wheat) turns to light brown in colour. Add 2 cups of water and salt. Close the pressure cooker and cook for 2 whistles or till it’s done. Remove from the flame and open the lid when the pressure is released. Add lemon juice and mix gently.

Garnish with chopped coriander and serve hot.

Navratan Korma

We had organised a puja at our house the last fortnight and had invited few guests. Since it was a spiritual day so the menu in a true Indian style was kept veg. Needless to say that the food that day had a divine taste. But, one dish that stood out amongst the rest and that was relished by all was Navratan Korma – A gravy dish with very little spices but full of flavours.

Navratan Korma

Here is how I cooked it.

Following preparation will serve 4.

Ingredients –

2 medium carrots cut into 1/2 inch cubes
6-8 florets of cauliflower
2 medium potatoes cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 cup green peas
6-7 french beans cut into 1/2 inch pieces
8-10 button mushrooms halfed
1/2 cup paneer (cottage cheese) cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 cup boiled onion paste
1 tablespoon ginger paste
1 tablespoon garlic paste
1/2 cup yogurt
2-3 green chillies chopped
1/2 cup fresh cream
1 tablespoon raisins
1/2 cup cashewnut
Handful of makhana (lotus seeds)
2-3 cloves
2 green cardamom
1 inch stick cinnamon
4-5 black pepercorns
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
2 tablespoon oil + for deep frying
salt to taste

Method –

Boil carrots, cauliflower, French beans, potatoes and green peas in three cups of boiling salted water and tuemeric powder till done and then immediately put them in cold water. Drain and keep aside. Ideally termuric powder is not added in the original recipe, but I like to add it for colour. Soak half the cashewnuts in half cup of warm water for ten minutes. Drain and grind to a fine paste. Chop the remaining cashewnuts.

Heat sufficient oil in a kadai and deep fry makhana for two minutes. Drain on an absorbent paper and keep aside. Heat two tablespoons of oil in a kadai. Add cloves, peppercorns, cinnamon and cardamoms. When they begin to crackle, add boiled onion paste. Cook the onions for five to eight minutes. Add ginger-garlic paste and saute for a couple of minutes. Add chopped green chillies and cashewnut paste. Now add yogurt and stir well. Cook on low heat for five minutes.

When masala is done, add mushrooms and other boiled vegetables. Cook for two to three minutes and add salt and three fourth cup of water. Add the fried makhana and paneer pieces, stir and cook for half a minute. Bring it to boil and finish with fresh cream. Garnished with chopped cashewnuts and raisins and serve hot.

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.

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.