Baked Curry Powder Potato Chips

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Time is flying and before I can register the weekend is here again. And obviously the worst thing about a weekend is that it gets over even before it starts. Its definitely not a good feeling but… Nevertheless, my fun time, my me time in the kitchen only happens during weekends. I love experimenting and its a bittersweet journey. These Baked Curry Powder Potato Chips is a serendipity out of my experimentation. A beautiful evening, a hot cuppa and some crisp and delicious potato chips. I am already dreaming about it again. Flavored with my latest favorite spice blend – Madras Curry Powder, these crispy chips has topped my snack list. The aroma of the spices will make you want to go for another piece for sure!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (For 2 – 3 people)

  • 3 large potatoes, washed and scrubbed
  • 2 1/2 tbsp Madras Curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder (optional)
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 1/2 tbsp olive oil/ melted butter
  • salt, to taste
  • freshly grounded black pepper, to taste
  • yogurt dip, for serving (optional)

METHOD:

  • Preheat your oven to 200 C for atleast 15 minutes. Line your baking tray with parchment paper and keep aside. (You can avoid lining with parchment paper)
  • Using a mandolin or a sharp knife, slice the potatoes thinly with their skin on. You can also cut them into wedges.
  • In a big bowl mix olive oil/ butter, madras curry powder, garlic, salt and freshly ground black pepper and whisk it.
  • Now put the sliced potatoes into this mixture and massage it gently until all the slices are well coated.
  • Take each slice and place it on the baking sheet and put it into the oven to bake for 20 – 22 minutes or until each side is crisp and golden brown. (Midway you can turn the slices so that they bake evenly).
  • Serve hot with green chutney or yogurt dip.

 

 

Dry Fruit Pulao

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There is absolute no points for guessing that coming from a Rajasthani family, we devour sweets in almost every possible thing. No meal (and I must specify this includes breakfast too) is complete without desi desserts loaded with ghee, saffron and dry fruits. And when I say sweets, its gotta be rich, fragrant and indulgent. This Dry Fruit Pulao ticks everything I just described. I love how satisfying this pulao is. The aroma of the spices, the crunch from the different dry fruits, the beautiful color from the saffron and the freshness from the pomegranate arils, all amalgamate into a bowl of gorgeous pulao.

My mum loves making pulao. I never remember having the same kind of rice repeated in a week. I remember how my friends loved my school lunch which had corn rice… Oh! I am salivating. This recipe is definitely is dedicated to her and I hope she is happy to see how much she has been influencing my daily cooking journey.

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (For 2 – 3 people)

  • 1 3/4 cup long grain basmati rice, soaked in water for 2 hours
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and julineed
  • 1/4 cup dried apricots, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup almonds, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup cashew nuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup black raisins, roughly chopped
  • 10 – 12 strands of saffron, soaked in 1 tbsp water
  • 4 tbsp ghee
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tsp caraway seeds (or you can use normal cumin seeds)
  • 2 whole cardamom
  • 6 – 7 whole black pepper
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 bay leaf
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 tsp orange zest/ peels
  • 1/2 cup fresh pomegranate arils
  • 1 tbsp dried rose petals, to garnish

METHOD:

  • In a pan take 1 1/2 tbsp ghee and roast all the nuts – almonds, pistachios, cashew nuts and apricots. Once they are light brown, add the raisins and toss for 30 seconds and take the pan off the stove and keep aside
  • Now in a pan take water and bring it to a rolling boil. Add half the saffron strands to it. Once its boiled, but the soaked (and drained) rice to it and let it cook until its par boiled. This will take around 7 – 8 minutes.
  • Once done, drain the water and keep aside.
  • Now in a big kadai, take ghee. Once its hot add caraway seeds and fennel seeds and let it crackle. Now add black peppercorns, bay leaf, crushed cardamom, cinnamon stick and cloves and saute it for 30 – 40 seconds until they are fragrant.
  • Now add sliced onions and let it cook until light golden brown.
  • To this add the julienne carrots and saute for 1 minute. Add salt and saute for another minute.
  • Now add the par boiled rice, all the roasted dry fruits, orange zest, cranberries and the remaining soaked saffron and saute everything for 1 minute or so.
  • Now add more water, cover the lid of the kadai tightly and let it cook for 20 -22 minutes on low heat. Once done switch off the stove and let it rest (with the lid covered)
  • Open the lid, serve the rice and garnish with rose petals and pomegranate arils along with fresh raita.

ENJOY!

Thai Rainbow Salad with Ginger Soy Dressing

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I have started to believe that I have a thing towards fresh produce and making everything from scratch whether its salad dressings, breads, ghee and possibly everything within my scope. There is still a long way to go, lot of skills to learn however I am loving this. Using local and fresh ingredients rather than frozen ones adds such a depth of flavor and a feel good factor in everything you make. The effort that goes in making everything perfect for your family and friends, making everything pure and good is a true epitome of love and affection.

This salad is all about freshness – delicious and crunchy ingredients, a flavorful dressing, beautifully tossed together and yay! its ready. A perfect way to welcome the summer and enjoy every bit of homemade thai flavors.

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (For 4 – 5 people)

For the salad:

  • 1/2 cup shredded red cabbage
  • 1/4 cup shredded cabbage
  • 1/2 cup red carrots, julineed
  • 1/3 cup mixed bell peppers, julineed
  • 180 – 200 grams rice vermicelli noodles
  • 1/4 cup coriander leaves, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp peanuts
  • 1 tbsp black sesame seeds
  • 1/2 red chilli, for garnish

For the dressing:

  • 1/4 cup soy
  • 1 1/2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 1/2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp freshly grated ginger
  • 1 tsp red chilli, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp honey (optional)

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METHOD:

For the dressing:

  • Whisk everything together until incorporated and keep aside until ready to use.

For the salad:

  • Take a bowl filled with boiling hot water and place the rice vermicelli noodles in it. Let it soak for 2 – 3 minutes or until the noodles is cooked.
  • Once done drain it and wash it with tap water. Allow the water to completely drain off.
  • In a large bowl mix together red cabbage, cabbage, carrots, bell peppers, coriander leaves, black sesame seeds and noodles and toss it so that everything is almost evenly distributed.
  • Add the dressing and toss it.
  • Garnish with red chilli, peanuts and coriander leaves and serve!

 

 

Strawberry and Coconut Rice Pudding

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It’s time to bid goodbye to my favorite fruit – Strawberries. I have to wait for another year to get my hands of these ruby red fresh strawberries and it’s not the best feeling. This Strawberry and Coconut Rice Pudding is a celebration of this amazing fruit. Creamy, delicious and perfectly comforting! A cozy morning with this bowl of yumness is everything dreamy mornings are made of.

The inspiration to make this came from a traditional Indian dessert called “Rice Kheer”, however having lots of canned coconut milk at home got me to try the coconut version of this. Devoid of any sweeteners, this is definitely something everyone in the family can enjoy. Healthy and celebration of strawberries!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 6 – 7 glasses)

  • 300 ml coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup basmati rice, soaked in water for atleast 1/2 hour
  • 1 pc cinnamon stick
  • 2 pc star anise
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cup roughly chopped strawberries
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp coconut sugar (optional)
  • 2 tsp chia seeds
  • almond slivers for garnish
  • unsalted pistachios for garnish, roughly crushed
  • sliced strawberries for garnish

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METHOD:

  • Take coconut milk , cinnamon stick and star anise in a sauce pan and put it on low-medium flame. Keep stirring it every 3 – 4 minutes to prevent it from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  • Meanwhile drain the water from the soaked basmati rice and wash it under running water atleast 2 – 3 times.
  • Once the bubbles start forming on the edges of the coconut milk saucepan, add the soaked rice, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, orange zest and let it cook until the rice is completely cooked.
  • Meanwhile take the chopped strawberries in another saucepan along with coconut sugar and put it on medium flame and let the strawberries cook in its own juices.
  • Add lemon zest, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract to the strawberries and let it cook. Once done remove it from the stove and allow it to cool completely.
  • Once cooled down stir in the chia seeds and keep aside.
  • Once the coconut milk and rice mixture is cooked, remove it from the stove, remove the cinnamon stick and star anise and allow the mixture to cool completely.
  • Take serving glasses and equally divide the strawberry coulis among the glasses.
  • Now equally divide the coconut rice mixture among the glasses on top of the layered strawberry coulis.
  • Garnish it with slivered almonds, pistachios and strawberry slices.
  • You can chill it slightly before serving or serve as is.

Eggless Chocolate Chip Muffins

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I have a special relationship with muffins. Be it a classic chocolate chip muffin or a blueberry muffin, I usually whip up atleast one batch of a different muffin every week. A freshly baked muffin for breakfast is what I call a perfect start to my day. And this classic Eggless Chocolate Chip Muffin is a dream come true on the breakfast table. The aroma of freshly baked goodies, the beautifully baked muffins right out of the oven sitting atop the kitchen top and waiting to be devoured – the sense of happiness and excitement is unparalleled. These muffins needs no frills or fancies. Its about the basic ingredients all whipped together to bring a smile on your face when you bite into it.

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 6 muffins)

  • 60 grams whole wheat flour
  • 30 grams oats flour
  • 70 grams brown sugar
  • 60 ml oil
  • 120 ml yogurt (I used Epigamia Artisinal yogurt)
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp heaped baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

METHOD:

  • Preheat your oven to 170 C for atleast 15 minutes. LIne your cupcake tray with liners or spray it with a cooking spray generously and keep aside.
  • In a bowl mix whole wheat flour and oats flour and keep aside
  • In another bowl mix oil, sugar, yogurt and vanilla extract and whisk it well. Now add baking soda and baking powder to it and whisk it.
  • Add the flour mix into the wet ingredients and fold it until incorporated.
  • Add the chocolate chips and fold it gently into the mixture.
  • Evenly divide the batter into the prepared muffin moulds and bake for 22 – 25 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
  • Once done, allow it to cool done and dive in!

Strawberry Jam

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The season of strawberries is almost getting over and I am making lots of fresh strawberry homemade jam until the next season comes by. Bright red, tart and luscious Strawberry Jam is what I crave for and nothing is better than a homemade version of it. You pair it with a regular slice of bread, top it on your ice cream, layer it in your cookies or add a bit into your salad dressing, this homemade jam is surely to win your hearts!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 1 cup)

  • 300 grams fresh strawberries, roughly chopped
  • 5 tbsp brown sugar (you can adjust the quantity depending on the sweetness of the strawberries)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 tsp lemon juice

METHOD:

  • Put the roughly chopped strawberries and brown sugar in a saucepan and put it on medium flame, stirring occasionally.
  • The strawberries will began to break and cook in their own juices. Keep stirring occasionally until the strawberries are soft and cooked.
  • Add vanilla extract and lemon zest and cook until the jam mixture thickens slightly
  • Once cooked remove it from the stove, add lemon juice and allow it cool completely before transferring it to a clean glass jar.
  • Store it in the fridge until you use it

Thandai Shortbreads Cookies

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Continuing with the Holi specials, and the festivities require the much needed touch of sweetness aka sugar! These Thandai flavored shortbread cookies is just about that – buttery, sugary and loaded with the traditional Thandai flavors. While the traditional Holi specials hold a special place in my heart, these Thandai Cookies are my new favorites. Its time to enjoy traditional flavors in a new avatar. The versatility of the classic Indian flavors and spices amazes me every time. These Thandai shortbreads is a true epitome of that. The hint of black peppercorns and fennel seeds, the goodness from the nuts and the aroma from the rose petals and extract all beautifully come together to celebrate the essence of this festival of colors.

Minimal ingredients, comes together in no time and loaded with the goodness of Holi flavors. A must on your holi party this year, because everyone’s gonna love it!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 24 round cookies)

  • 105 grams unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 130 grams whole wheat flour + extra for dusting
  • 3 1/2 tbsp thandai masala
  • 35 grams icing sugar (you can use granulated sugar also)
  • 1/4 tsp rose extract
  • pinch of salt (optional)

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METHOD:

  • Preheat your oven to 170 C for atleast 15 minutes. Line your cookie sheet with parchment paper and keep aside.
  • In a bowl beat the butter until smooth and pale. Now add the icing sugar and beat it until smooth and creamy. This might take around 50 seconds to a minute.
  • Add in rose extract and beat it for 10 seconds.
  • Now add whole wheat flour, thandai masala and salt and beat the mixture until just combined. There might be crumbs which is fine.
  • Transfer the mixture to a lightly floured surface and bring it all together in the form of a flattened disc.
  • Cover with a cling film and let it rest for atleast an hour in the refrigerator.
  • Lightly flour the surface and roll out the dough to a 1/4 – 1/2 inch thick circle.
  • Take a cookie cutter and cut the dough in the shape you desire and transfer it to the baking sheet and put it in the freezer for 10 -12 minutes or until slightly firm.
  • Put the cookie to bake for 9 – 10 minutes or until the edges are golden brown.
  • Once done take out the cookie from the oven and allow it to cool down and dive in!

Happy Holi!