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April 15, 2014

Chicken Curry

The basic chicken curry recipe....I posted a similar version back in 2011, which is this Chicken Curry Recipe. I actually wanted to replace the old pic and replace with the new one, but somehow I am not feeling like re-posting it with new pics and instructions, instead will post a new post. :) Old is not old anymore until you value the effort put into it.
To prepare this post content I had to read through the whole old post and see what I did different here. The main difference I found is that before I added water to cook the chicken, which I stopped adding from the time I realized I don't need to add any water to cook the chicken. You need patience and love and of course time instead of water to cook a real good chicken. First you need to cook it on medium high for few mins, then lower the flame, cover and cook for the rest of the time. The liquid which comes out of the chicken is more than enough to cook it through, which gives a much more tastier curry and the meat also absorbs all the flavor better.
This is the old pic from 2011, I am really happy to see the change and a little improvement in my photography. :)
Here is the recipe again with a little tweak ....

Ingredients:
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1 whole chicken cut to medium size pieces
1 big red onion sliced
2 tomatoes chopped
1 tbsp Ginger-Garlic paste
1 Bay Leaf
2-3 Green Cardamom
1 1/2 inch stick Cinnamon
5-6 whole Black Peppercorns
3-4 Cloves
1/4 tsp Fennel seeds
1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
1 tbsp Red Chili powder
1 1/2 tbsp Coriander powder
1 tsp Garam Masala powder
1 tsp Turmeric powder
Salt to taste
1/4 cup Cilantro chopped
2 tsp Oil
Method:
---------
1. Clean and wash the chicken. Marinate the chicken with half of the ginger-garlic paste, salt, turmeric, little bit of chili powder and coriander powder for about 2-3 hours or overnight.
2. In a heavy bottom pan or deep dish pan, add oil, when it's hot add bay leaf, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon stick, peppercorns, fennel seeds and let it saute it for a min.
3. Add onions, saute it until it turns golden brown, add rest of the ginger-garlic paste, and saute it for about a min or until it turns slight brown, add the tomatoes, cover and cook until the tomatoes get soft, now add rest of the spice powders i.e., chili, coriander powder and saute it until the masala of spices and tomatoes change to darker color and also check for the oil that will bubble out between the masala.
4. Now add the chicken and increase the flame to medium high, saute it for few mins, keep stirring it, so that it does not burn.
5. Now lower the flame to little higher than low, cover and cook it for about 10-12 mins.
6. Now open the lid stir it occasionally and cook it until the chicken is done, if you feel that it does not have enough gravy, then you can add some warm water and cook it for about a 2 mins more. Best results will be if you don't add any water, to achieve this, try reducing the flame more and cook the chicken all through with the steam created while covered.
7. Enjoy this yummy chicken curry with roti, chapati or steamed rice, pulav or biriyani.

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April 08, 2014

Whole Wheat Cheddar Biscuits

Biscuits are so tempting in the restaurants, but lately I am trying to reduce eating them. So had to come up with some idea that would be guilt-free enough so that I can still enjoy them. I came up with this recipe which is so simple and easy and makes delicious biscuits. First I thought whole wheat will not make tasty biscuits as the white flour ones, but I guess I was wrong; it took me so long to start making it at home....well now I can say for sure....it's never late. :) I am sure once you start making it at home, you will never go back to the restaurant and moreover you can get creative with the ingredients as well. 

Ingredients:
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1 cup Whole Wheat Flour
1 cup Mild/Sharp Cheddar Cheese
1/2 cup Milk
1 Stick Butter (1/2 cup)
1/4 tsp Garlic powder
1/2 tsp Salt
1 1/4 tsp Baking Powder
Method:
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1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
2. Mix all the dry ingredients with fork and add cheese fork mix.
3. Add wet ingredients and mix just until mixed.
4. Spoon 12 biscuits on a lined baking sheet.
5. Bake it around 18-20 mins or until done.
6. Enjoy it with a bowl of soup and top it with butter when it's warm; adding butter is optional.

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April 05, 2014

Quinoa Brown Rice Dosa

"Experimenting" with Food sounds like an old name for me now, I would like to call it "Sneak-In Goodness". Does it not sound better?? Many of them will surely agree to what I say. whenever I experiment with ingredients, first I prepare my mind, so most of the times I like it, but making the two boys at home happy, is a big mind work for me. With that regards, quinoa is one the ingredients, where I have noticed that, they always don't like it. So I had to come up with a new recipe out of the regular recipe which they like to eat; that is nothing other than Dosa. I always love dosa as any part of the meal or any time of the day, so as my boys. So came up with this idea. The texture of dosa was very crispy and gave a perfect golden color. No one ever can make out that it has quinoa, if they really don't like quinoa; this is one of the best way to eat it as.
Ingredients:
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1 cup Quinoa
1 cup Brown Rice
1 cup Idli Rice
1 cup Urad Dal
1/4 tsp Fenugreek Seeds
1/2 cup or Handful Cooked Rice
Slat as needed
Method:
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1. Wash quinoa, brown rice and fenugreek seeds and soak in enough water together for about 3-4 hours.
2. Wash and soak urad dal in water for about 3-4 hours.
3. In a mixer grinder add urad dal, cooked rice and enough the soaked water and grind it to smooth paste and remove it to a big bowl.
4. In the same mixer grinder add quinoa and brown rice add enough water and grind it to a little bit coarse paste and add it to the urad dal paste dough.
5. Mix both well; if it is too cold outside, keep the batter in a warm place or in the oven with the oven light on for about 8 hours.
6. It will be better if you prepare the batter in the evening and keep it until the next morning.
7. Morning you can notice that the batter has risen, add salt and mix well.
8. Take enough batter in a bowl, add water if needed to make it little bit thin batter.
9. Heat a dosa pan, add a laddle full of batter, spread it to round shape and cook both sides, adding a little oil or ghee (clarified butter) and server it with your choice of chutney, pachadi or sambar. I served with sambar and peanut chutney.

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March 31, 2014

Almond Butter Cookies - NO Flour - Gluten-Free - 4 Ingredient Fix

The simplest, tastiest and healthiest cookies I have ever made. I should definitely not forget to thank the person who shared this recipe to me, that is, Randi. She is one of the best person's I have met. Thank you so much Randi. I always look for easiest methods to get make things and make the most of the ingredients that I use; so eventually you will end up with using less ingredients. "LESS is always MORE"....I strongly believe in this. The lesser ingredients you use, it enhances the flavor of each ingredient and if you use more, most of the ingredients are hidden. I am not telling that all recipes with lot of ingredients does taste bad, but for some recipes it will give the best results if you use less ingredients, whose end result will always be elegant and tasty.
I liked these cookies more than any other, because it had the right texture that I always look in cookies; kinda soft, melt in the mouth and a very slight crispy outside. 

Ingredients:
------------

1 cup Almond Butter (Click HERE for my recipe to make it at home, else you can use a store bought)
2/3 cup Brown Sugar (you can use either white sugar or a combination of both)
1 Egg
1/2 cup Dark Chocolate oven roasted Almonds (I bought the Blue Diamond brand, if you don't have you can use plain roasted almonds)
Method:
--------
1. Preheat oven to 375F.
2. In a bowl mix all the ingredients except the roasted almonds.
3. Crush/chop these roasted almonds to small pieces and lay it flat on a plate or on a flat surface/counter.
4. Take a scoop of the almond butter cookie dough, roll it to a ball and then flatten a bit and place it over the chopped almonds and cover the two sides.
5. Make all the cookies as in step 4, and place them one by one on a lined baking sheet, leave enough space so that the cookies don't stick to each other.
6. Bake it for about 7-10 mins or until it's done. Enjoy!
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March 27, 2014

Classic Italian Pizza Margherita (BMT Pizza)

Who does not love Pizza!! In the beginning I used add more sauce and lot of topping and make it stuffed, which ends up with a soggy crust and was too heavy. Slowly I started loosing interest, as it was too heavy. The reason being I would get too excited about making pizza at home with our own choice of add the sauce, toppings and cheese. Once I lost the interest, I didn't make it much at home and didn't as well enjoy the store bought. It does not mean that I lost interest totally but, finally realized that less is always more and with the right choice and right amount of ingredients, the results will always be the best. So this recipe is the best example for the best tasting recipe.
Lets talk a little bit about the pizza origin....the word "PIZZA" is derived from the Latin verb "Pinsere", to press and Greek "Pektos", meaning solid. The ancient Greeks covered their bread with oils, herbs and cheese.
Modern Pizza originated in Italy as the Neapolitan flatbread. It is said to believe that Pizza Margherita was invented in 1889, when the Royal Palace of Capodimonte commissioned the Neapolitan pizzaiolo Raffaele Esposito to create a pizza in honor of the visiting Queen Margherita. Of the three different pizzas he created, the Queen strongly preferred a pie swathed in the colors of the Italian flag: red (tomato), green (basil) and white (mozarella). Supposedly, this kind of pizza was named after the Queen Margherita.
Ingredients:
-------------
1 pkg Whole Wheat Thin Pizza Crust
1/3 cup Marinara/Pasta/Pizza Sauce
1 tbsp Olive Oil
1 1/2 tsp Balsamic Vinegar
1 pkg Fresh Mozzarella Cheese cubed
1 pkg Fresh Basil Leaves Julianne
2 large Tomatoes sliced to thick pieces
Salt and Pepper to taste
2 tsp Cornmeal to sprinkle
Method:
--------
1. Preheat oven according to pizza crust package instructions.
2. In a bowl mix olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper and add tomato slices and coat all the tomatoes.
3. On a pizza stone, sprinkle cornmeal.
4. Roll out the pizza crust and with a rolling pin, bring to the desired shape.
5. Spread the pasta sauce (choose tomato and basil), arrange half of the cheese cubes around the pizza dough, then top it with tomato slices, sprinkle with basil leaves and top it again with rest of the cheese cubes.
6. Bake it according to package instruction until done, to get a extra touch to the pizza turn your oven to broil for few secs. You might have to watch it, else it will burn.
7. Enjoy this simple yet a yummy tasting pizza.

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SIMPLE QUOTES ABOUT COOKING AND FOOD...

The only time to eat diet food is while you're waiting for the steak to cook
-
Julia Child

Dessert is probably the most important stage of the meal, since it will be the last thing your guests remember before they pass out all over the table. The Anarchist Cookbook
Nothing would be more tiresome than eating and drinking if God had not made them a pleasure as well as a necessity.
-
Voltaire

What my mother believed about cooking is that if you worked hard and prospered, someone else would do it for you.
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Nora Ephron

No man in the world has more courage than the man who can stop after eating one peanut.
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Channing Pollock

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