Posts filed under ‘Easy’

No bake lemon yogurt tart/pudding/cassata

So I whipped this awesome tartie thingie quite some time back and I completely forgot to blog about it!

I really love the acerbic taste of a fresh lemon and tart lemon pies and puddings but lemon curd based desserts are just so rich! All the egg yolks and sugar it’s to egg-y and heavy for my liking.

Yogurt is another one of my favourites and I just love how flavoured yogurt can capture fruit flavours and lend a light and summery mouthfeel.

So I mixed them both up. The results were pretty good; got a nice no-bake pudding/tart/frozen dessert; almost like a lemony cassata.

What you need:

1 pack of lemon flavoured pudding mix

1 cup of strained or greek style yogurt

sugar as per taste

1 tbs fresh lemon juice and rind

1/2 tsp lemon essence

10 digestive biscuits broken into chunks

1/2 cup glace fruits, nuts and fresh fruit chunks (fresh fruit is optional)

What to do:

1. prepare the lemon pudding and set aside to cool (should be equvivalent to one cup)

2. Put the digestive biscuits in a deep dish

3. Beat yogurt with sugar, lemon juice and essence

4. Mix cooled pudding with yogurt and gently fold in the glace fruit and nuts

5. Pour over digestive biscuits

6. Freeze till set. Garnish with fresh fruit or lemon slices. Cut into slices and serve.

September 25, 2009 at 12:26 pm 3 comments

Ras Malai: Best + easiest ever!

Literal translation: Liquid Cream.

Actually it has nothing to do with cream and it definitely has nothing to do with liquid cream or even liquid + cream. It’s just an absurd name- if you make it my way!

Ras malai is a traditional Indian sweet, originating from West Bengal. God I love the Bengalis for having invented this. It’s my favourite dessert ever.

These tiny balls of cottage cheese are soaked in a creamy milk and sugar and eaten with the milk.

It’s a tricky and complicated recipe BUT this version (handed down by my aunt) is easy, breezy and beautiful (yes it’s a cover-worthy dessert)

What you need:

For the Malai: Creamy balls

1 cup of Nido milk powder (or any other brand)

1 egg

1 + 1/2 tsp baking powder

For the Ras: Milk Syrup

1lt milk

1/2 can unsweetened evaporated milk

1/2 cup sugar

Saffron strands

1 tsp cardamom powder

What to do:

1. Make Ras. Boil everything together and make sure that the flame is med, do not let it burn!

2. Make the malai. Sift the milk powder with baking powder, beat in the egg and knead to form a sticky dough. You may be tempted to add water, but resist the temptation. Form tiny balls (they will swell)

3. Put the balls in the boiling milk and simmer for 15-20 minutes till balls swell up and are soft in the centre.

4. Cool and serve nice and cold.

The balls can be flattened- the more traditional shape.

Good example of Watermark gone awry.

September 11, 2009 at 7:13 am 6 comments

Quickest veg stir-fry with Za’atar

I tried Za’atar in Kuwait and I fell in love with that stuff. It’s a mix spice with a lot of stuff in it; mint, sesame seeds, oregano, sumaah, thyme, marjoram and a lot of other stuff I can’t figure out. Lucky for me I don’t need to.

I’ve bought enough Za’atar to last for a really long time (smart thinking)  But if you can’t get your hands on some of this stuff, then you can try making your own. That link seems to have covered it.

There’s really not much to talk about this recipe. Make it and you shall know.

What you need:

1 red onion

1 ts of ginger + garlic paste and more garlic if you will

about 250  Mix vegetables, or whatever you want to stir fry

2tbs  Za’atar

40gm cottage cheese/paneer/tofu

salt as per your taste-buds (or dietary requirements)

1 tbs (good quality) oyster sauce

20gm of grated processed cheese (optnl)

1 tsp oil

What to do:

1. Saute veggies in oil, starting with onions, ginger garlic paste and the harder veggies progressing to the softer ones. Throw in the paneer/tofu/cottage cheese

2. Add salt, oyster sauce and Za’atar. Cover and cook on a low flame for about 7 minutes or so.

3. Cover with processed cheese. Dig in.

I used mix veggies from a pack. So easy.

Frozen cubed paneer? Awesome, no chopping required.

My new comfort food? Definitely.

A bowl of this stuff would make me really comfortable right now.

September 4, 2009 at 6:37 am 2 comments

hard working cook, lazy blogger

Writing a blog is hard work. Ever so often I find my self cooking away or even clicking away but never get the patience to blog about any of it.

I’m going to be reall-ly busy the next one month, it’s Ramadan plus I will be studying like a crazy nut (or at least I should be!) for all the damned exams that I have to give. I’m quite addicted to social networking and useless browsing so I might even unplug my Internet for the month (yikes!)

So I’m scheduling a couple of posts. hopefully you wont miss me too much 😛

Ohh here’s the Cinnamon french toast with poached caramel flavoured apples that I turned out the other day. Ok Ok so I couldn’t resist. I took a bite before I could click the pic, trust me- you would do the same.

Cinnamon toast + poached apple

What you need:

for the french toast:

1 egg

2 slices of white bread

1/2 tsp cinnamon powder

2 tsp sugar

1/8 tsp salt

1/4 cup cold milk

For the poached apples

1 red apple; peeled, cored and sliced(whichever type)

1 small cinnamon stick

3 tbs sugar

1 cup water

1/2 tsp lemon juice

What to do:

1. Make the poached apples. Caramelize 3tbs of sugar in a saucepan and pour a cup of water once caramelized. Reduce heat.

2. Put the lemon juice, cinnamon and apple slices in the saucepan and cook covered for 15 minutes till done.

3. Make the french toast. Beat eggs, cinnamon, sugar, salt and milk. Dip slices of bread and fry in a non stick pan till golden brown on both sides.

4. Serve both together. Pour some of the caramel liquid over the apples and the toast. YUM!

I sat down on my pretty little (new!) carpet to enjoy this massive breakfast. ahh soft soft carpet.

August 28, 2009 at 6:05 am 2 comments

Oyster Sauce Stuffed Mushrooms

I absolutely love mushrooms. Not only are they yum but they can be made in a million creative ways.  Stuffing mushrooms is so easy and makes  for really fancy-shmancy appetizers.

I wanted a steak-like taste. My answer oyster sauce.

So oyster sauce + dark soy + mozzerella cheese + veggies + mushroom = Pure delicious joy.

Stuffing is not possible without “de-stemming” the mushrooms. You need to be really careful when you do this. (I admit there were a couple of casualites on the way)

What  you need:

1 small red onion, chopped

1 green chili, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, chopped

25 med sized button mushrooms, “de-stemmed”

1/4 cup green peas, semi cooked

4 tbs oyster sauce

1.5 tbs dark soy

1 tsp vinegar

Just a  bit of salt

1/4 tsp pepper powder

1tbs Oil to Sautee

1tbs olive oil to drizzle

What to do:

1. Heat oil in a skillet.  Fry the onions, garlic and chili.

2. Add the peas when the onions appear translucent. Add 1 tbs of the oyster sauce, all the vinegar, soy, salt and pepper. Sautee briefly and remove from heat.

3. Toss mushroom heads in the rest of the oyster sauce and olive oil,  and a bit of salt and pepper.

4. Place mushrooms in a deep baking dish, heads down and stuff with the onion and peas mixture. Place a small cube of cheese on top.

5. Cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes on 180 C  or pan-fry, covered for 10 minutes till the oyster sauce starts sticking to the skillet.

On the pan… just about to melt..

Ok now they have melted.

One word sums it.. YUM.

July 24, 2009 at 6:08 am 2 comments

Miniature Pancakes

OK why miniature??

I don’t know! just a whim! but they were super cute. I like pancakes once in a while. If I crave for pancakes as a main course, it’s got to be the paper-thin no rise kind.

But If it’s a  decadent Sunday Morning breakfast, I go for the fluffy baking powder kind.

What you need

1 large egg (the fluffier the pancake, the better)

1 cup flour (I used whole)

3/4 cup milk (I used soy)

1/4 tsp baking powder

Salt to taste

What to do:

1. Sift flour with baking powder.

2. Mix everything in a bowl and whisk till a thick-ish consistency is obtained

3. Pour in small ladleful’s onto a hot greased skillet

4. Cover and cook on low for a minute on each side.

5. Serve warm

July 11, 2009 at 6:00 am 2 comments

Bendy Straw Mango Smootie

The best part about Summer is the Mango of course. The Alphonso Mango to be more specific. 

The Mango Season is almost like a festival one to be prolonged and savoured without bothering about trivial obstacles like weight loss or diabetes. My dear (severely diabetic) grandmother bought 6 dozen of these crimson shells of happiness. 

For most of the part, we just eat them whole: It really is nonpareil in it’s natural form. But what harm is it to smootie it or to aamras it or to tart it or cheesecake is?

And there certainly is no harm in eating it for breakfast.

A couple of days back I twittered  about the boredom in breakfast dishes. I take that back. If mangoes were to be my daily morning fix; so be it. 

As though the idea of gulping thick sweet crimson mango flesh wasn’t good enough, I added a bendy straw for additional joy. Of course I’ve always known and used straws but my awareness towards bendy straws arose from an episode of ugly betty (believe it or not). Well what can I say about the power of suggestion, we had the straws at home in a week.

I don’t know what it is about bending a plastic straw toward my face that gives me immense comfort and joy, really.

 

Bendy Straw Mango Smoothie

What you need:

1 ripe mango (pref alphonso)

1/4 cup milk

4-5 ice cubes

1 bendy straw 

 

What to do:

1. Blend the mango, milk and ice cubes.

2. Pour into a glass and place your bendy straw in a strategic position (the way you like it) Drink up the crimson joy.

May 26, 2009 at 12:00 am 1 comment

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