Thursday, March 31, 2011


Snickerdoodles !!! Don't break your head by thinking so hard...These are wonderful cinnamon - sugar cookies. They may have an unusual name but it is best for snacking any time. It has got crispy edges and chewy centres. I love it's buttery flavor. They are so easy to whip up. Hardly takes any time. This requires only basic ingredients like flour, butter, sugar  and eggs. I am sure these will be there in everybody's pantry. I have bookmarked this recipe long back but taken a back by seeing it's simple look and the chocolate craver inside me is always partial to choclat-ey recipes. This time I wanted to try something which does not have chocolate in it but which gives you a good taste and trust me people you can't stop munching at one.  These cookies should be baked only until the edges begin to brown. This will keep the outside crisp with a soft and chewy interior. Baking them longer will make them more crisp and not as soft inside. They will keep very well so they make an ideal cookie for gift giving. I had to make it in batches as I am going to contribute it for Bake sale for japan.

My fellow bloggers informed me about the "San Jose Bake Sale for Japan" . All the sale proceeds will go to the Japanese Earthquake relief. I am so happy that two of my blogger friends Vijitha and Rose informed me on time and we are gearing up for the event. I will recommend everyone to do whatever we can to promote the event. If you cannot bake, please support this by spreading the word via twitter, FB and other mediums. You can get the full details about this event by clicking here.

Recipe Source :

Ingredients :

2 3/4 cups (360 grams) all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 cup (227 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 1/2 cups (300 grams) granulated white sugar

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon pure vanilla


1/3 cup (66 grams) granulated white sugar

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Method :

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder. 

In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the butter and sugar until smooth (about 2 to 3 minutes). Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Beat in the vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and beat until you have a smooth dough. If the dough is soft, cover and refrigerate until firm (about one to two hours).

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (190 degrees C) and place rack in the center of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. 

Shape the dough into 1 inch (2.5 cm) round balls.

Coating: In a large shallow bowl mix together the sugar and cinnamon.

Roll the balls of dough in the cinnamon sugar and place on the prepared pan, spacing about 2 inches (5 cm) apart. Then, using the bottom of a glass, gently flatten each cookie to about 1/2 inch (1.5 cm) thick.

Bake the cookies for about 8 - 10 minutes, or until they are light golden brown and firm around the edges. The centers of the cookies will still be a little soft. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool.

Can store in an airtight container, at room temperature, for about 10 - 14 days.

Makes about 48 Cookies


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Prawn / Shrimp / Chemeen Biriyani

I am a sea food fan. Prawns always tops the list. Whenever I Visit home my mom preapares prawns curry. But I was not in the mood of having a curry. I wanted to make biryani. Biriyani is used to denote a dish where the rice  is cooked separately from the (curry of meat or vegetables). The curry and the rice are then brought together and layered, resulting in a dish of the contrasting flavors of unflavored rice and intensely flavored sauce and meat or vegetables. At my home everybody prefers using chicken for biriyani, So hopes of having prawn biriyani was never materialized.  I was searching for a good recipe for a long time. I got this recipe from maria. I prefer more masala in the biriyani. Her recipe was perfect for us. You should visit her lovely space. I have followed her recipe with very few variations here and there.  While making biriyani or pulao I always avoid the garnishing layer. I don't prefer corriander leaves in my food. So my readers please feel free to add corriander leaves, fried onions, raisins and toasted cashew nuts and garnish the biriyani. You can serve this along with raita , pappad and pickle.

Recipe Source:

Slightly adapted from

For the rice:

Basmati rice – 3 cups
Water – 6 cups
Cardamom & clove – 3 each
Cinnamon – 1 medium size stick
Butter – 3 tbsp (Unsalted)
Salt - To Taste

For the masala :

Prawns – 1/2 kg (cleaned & deviened)
Ginger garlic paste – 2 tbsp
Chilli powder – 1/2 tbsp
Pepper powder – 1/2 tsp
Onions – 3, chopped finely
Green chilli -5-6
Tomato – 2-3, chopped finely
Coconut – 1 handful
Curd – 1/2 cup
Cashews – 6-8 (soaked in 2 tbsp water)
Garam masala – 1 tsp

Rice preparation :

Wash and soak the rice in water for 25 minutes. Drain the water completely. Boil 6 cups water with half the quantity of whole masala & keep it aside. Heat butter in a vessel/pan, splutter the remaining whole masala and add the rice. Fry the rice for around 5-7 minutes or until the rice starts cracking. Add the boiled water,  & salt. Cook till the rice is done and water is completely dried. Spread the rice in a tray & keep aside.

Masala preparation :

Marinate the prawns with 1 tbsp of ginger garlic paste, red chilli powder, pepper powder and salt and keep it for 2-3 hours in the fridge. Meanwhile grind a handful of coconut  with a little water & keep it aside. Also grind the soaked cashews into a smooth paste.

Shallow fry the marinated prawns after the specified time. Once the prawns are fried, keep it aside and use the same oil to cook onions, remaining ginger garlic paste (1 tbsp) and green chilli. Once onions are fried well, add chopped tomatoes. Once the tomatoes are cooked, add curd, coconut,  paste. Once it boils add fried prawns and cook in low flame for 5-6 minutes. Add the cashew paste & 1 tsp of garam masala. Mix well. Cook for 2 more minutes & remove from fire.

Layering the Biriyani :

Preheat the oven to 180 degree 10 minutes before baking the biriyani. Apply some ghee to a baking dish. Put one layer of masala in the dish. On top of that spread some rice and make another layer. Again spread another layer of masala on top of the rice. Repeat the process until the masala and rice is finished. The top layer should be of rice. You can drizzle ghee in between the layers. Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes.

Verdict : Strongly reccommended for any sea food lovers.

PS: Maria has suggested to put a wet cloth and cover the biriyani while baking. 

I am sending this to The Kerala Kitchen hosted by Magpie

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Fried Rice

Fried Rice is a popular chineese food. It's mainly made of eggs, vegetables and some kind of meat. You can take it to next level by adding sauces and garnish it with parsely and spring onions. It can be eaten along with an accompaniment, or as a course by itself. Everyone have their own version of preparing fried rice. Each time I prepare the dish I make alterations. It mainly depends upon the stuffs available in my pantry. So when I was running low in my pantry shelf I made this in a jiffy and had a quick fix for my meal. 

Recipe Source : My Own

Ingredients :

Rice - 2 cups
Butter - 2 Tbs  (I prefer unsalted butter)
Maggi Chicken stock cubes - 4
Water - 4 cups
Carrot - 1/4 cup
Peas - 1/4 cup
Eggs - 4
Salt - To Taste

Method :

wash the rice and drain it for 15 minutes. Heat the butter and fry the rice in low flame. When it starts to crack, switch of the flame and keep it aside. Boil the water and put all the ingredients except eggs. Should be careful with salt. Cover it and cook well in low flame. When it becomes void of moisture content, remove the rice and keep it aside. Allow it to cool. Mean while beat the eggs with a dash of chilli powder and pepper powder and scramble it. Mix the eggs with the rice and serve it  hot.

PS: I am not mentioning the amount of powders used in eggs. It's based on your spice levels. I always prefer a level higher spice in all my food.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Chocolate Cheese Cake

Chocolate cheese cake tops as my favorite in the list of deserts. I would call a chocolate cheese cake as triple dose of chocolate. Chocolate is used in the crust , filling and over the top. The crust is made of chocolate wafers and melted butter. The middle layer is the main attraction. The sinful combination of chocolate, cream cheese and sour cream gave it a creamy texture. The final chocolate layer is made of cream and chocolate. Now you know Why I call it as a triple dose chocolate. I had a cousin who is coming by and I thought the cheese cake would be the perfect way to finish our weekend dinner. The best cheese cake I had was from a restaurant in vegas. Nothing can beat the taste of it. From then on the baker inside me was not giving me piece of mind. I was waiting for a reason to bake it. The chocolate cheese cake is a real showstopper. It hits you at the right spot.

Let me share a few tips in the baking of a cheese cake:

It is very important that the oven be at 350 deg F when you put the cake in it. I also recommend that you do not open the oven for the first 30 minutes at least! You bake essentially till the entire top of the cake has a dull finish, and the top just jiggles slightly when you tap the side of the pan. It should not move in waves as if it were liquid. To help prevent cracks, turn off the oven and let the cheesecake sit inside for an hour. To cut the cleanest slices, use a knife dipped in warm water. 

Recipe Source :

Ingredients :

Chocolate Cheesecake Crust:

1 1/2 cups (150 grams) chocolate wafer crumbs

1/3 cup (75 grams) unsalted butter, melted


12 ounces (340 grams) semi-sweet chopped

24 ounces (680 grams) (3 - 8 ounces packages) full fat cream cheese, room temperature

1 cup (200 grams) granulated white sugar

3 large eggs, room temperature

1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1 cup (240 ml) full fat or light sour cream, room temperature


4 ounces (115 grams) semi-sweet  chopped

1/3 cup (80 ml) heavy whipping cream

1 teaspoon unsalted butter, room temperature

Method :

Chocolate Cheesecake: Butter or spray with a non stick vegetable spray, a 10 inch (25 cm) spring form pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) with rack in center of oven.

Crust: In a medium sized bowl combine the chocolate wafer crumbs and melted butter. Press the crumbs evenly over the bottom of the spring form pan. Cover and refrigerate while you make the filling.

For Filling: Melt the chopped chocolate in a stainless steel bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, in the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer) beat the cream cheese, on medium low speed, until smooth. Gradually beat in the sugar. Add the melted chocolate and beat until fully incorporated. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well (about 30 seconds) after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the vanilla extract and sour cream and beat until thoroughly incorporated. Remove the crust from the refrigerator and pour in the filling. Place the cheesecake pan on a larger baking pan and place in the oven.

Bake for about 50 - 55 minutes or until firm yet the center of the cheesecake will still look a little wet and wobbly. Remove from oven and carefully run a knife or spatula around the inside edge of pan to loosen the cheesecake (helps prevent the surface from cracking as it cools). Let cool and then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a few hours before covering with the ganache.

Ganache: Place the chopped chocolate in a stainless steel bowl. Heat the cream and butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil. Immediately pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for a few minutes. Stir until smooth. Cool slightly and then pour over cheesecake. With an offset spatula or back of a spoon evenly spread the ganache over the top of the cheesecake. Cover and return to the refrigerator for several hours or overnight. This cheesecake tastes best after being refrigerated for at least a day. Serve in small slices.

To freeze:  Place the cooled cheesecake on a baking pan and freeze, uncovered, until firm. Remove the cheesecake from the freezer, wrap it in heavy duty aluminum foil and place in a freezer bag. Seal and return to freezer. Can be frozen for several months. Thaw uncovered cheesecake in the refrigerator overnight.

I am sending this across to Crazy for Cakes

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Poori Masala

I am sure all my readers are aware of my love for cereals. I can eat cereals for any meal of the day. Sometimes if I don't have any leftovers in the fridge I used to have cereals for lunch. I know it's weird !!! But eating it any time of the day is fine with me. We usually take cereals for breakfast everyday. But only during weekends I cook something else. Once 'A' got so bored of cereals and asked me whether I can make his favorite poori masala. As usual I couldn't deny his request and started myself preparing it.

Recipe Source : My Mom


For poori

Wheat Flour - 1 cup
All purpose Flour - 1 cup
Oil - 1 Tbs
Salt - 1/2 tsp
Water - 1/2 cup

For Masala

Potatoes - 1/2 kg
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Onions - 2
Green chillies - 4
Ginger - 1 small piece
Dry red chilli bits - Few

Method :

To make poori: Add the water and mix the dough. Make small balls. Then roll in flour and roll out into thin rounds and deep fry in oil ( preferably coconut oil ).

To make Masala: Wash the potatoes well. Put in pressure cooker with level water and cook with weight for 10 minutes. Peel and mash coarsely. Heat Oil. Add onions. When the onions are transluscent, add little water and salt and boil. Add the potatoes and mix well.

Ps: For any measure you use, remember equal quantities of wheat flour and All purpose flour.

I am sending this over to The Kerala Kitchen hosted by Magpie

Monday, March 21, 2011


Madeleine's are very small sponge cakes with a distinctive shell-like shape acquired from being baked in pans with shell-shaped depressions. Aside from the traditional moulded pan, commonly found in stores specialising in kitchen equipment no special tools are required to make madeleines.The flavour is similar to, but somewhat lighter than, sponge cake. I have never heard about Madeleines while I was in India. When I first came to U.S I came across the shell shaped beauties. After that I got addicted to these yummilicious treat. From then, the thought of making it at home started haunting me. During one of my regular visit to the baking store with my friend I was able to get the pan. I was very much excited to get the pan and from then I am searching for a reason to bake it.

I was planning to make it this weekend but was so tied up with several other things. I had a nice get together with my fellow bloggers on saturday. It was so nice of 'A' to drop me and wait for me while I  hang out with my blogger friends. And ofcourse after reaching home he started fishing for compliments. Now let's get back to the recipe.

Recipe Source :

Ingredients :

1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter

1 cup (130 grams) all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

3 large eggs, at room temperature

2/3 cup (133 grams) granulated white sugar

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Method :

First, melt the butter and allow it to cool while you make the batter. In a small bowl place the flour, baking powder and salt and whisk until well blended.

In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat the eggs and sugar at medium-high speed until the mixture has tripled in volume and forms a thick ribbon when the beaters are lifted (about 5 minutes).  Add the vanilla extract and beat to combine. Sift a small amount of flour over the egg mixture and, using a large rubber spatula, fold the flour mixture into the beaten eggs to lighten it.  Sift the rest of the flour over the egg mixture and fold in being sure not to overmix or the batter will deflate. 

Whisk a small amount of the egg mixture into the melted butter to lighten it.  Then fold in the cooled melted butter in three additions.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or several hours, until slightly firm. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).  Generously butter two 12-mold Madeleine pans.  Dust the molds with flour and tap out the excess.  (Could spray pans with Bakers Joy instead.) (Make sure the pans are well greased or the Madeleine will stick and be hard to remove.)

Drop a generous tablespoonful of the batter into the center of each prepared mold, leaving the batter mounded in the center.  (This will result in the classic "humped" appearance of the madeleines.)

Bake the Madeleine for 11 to 13 minutes, until the edges are golden brown and the centers spring back when lightly touched.  Do not overbake these cookies or they will be dry.

Remove the pans from the oven. Transfer the madeleines, smooth sides down, to wire racks to cool.  The madeleines are best served the same day but can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 2 to 3 days or frozen, well wrapped, for up to 1 month.

I am sending this across to Crazy for Cakes

Have a look at my Madeleine pan

Egg Roast

Egg roast/ Mutta roast is one among the favorite accompaniments for breakfast dishes in Kerala. This dish is very popular in thattukada's (street shops) as well. I love to have it along with bread. This dish is super easy to prepare and you will be out in couple of minutes from the kitchen. Each households in Kerala have their 
own recipes for egg roast. This is one dish which can be prepared in many ways. By adding coconut milk you will get a thick gravy . I have seen some people shallow fry the hard boiled eggs. Like I said each one has their own way of making it. I am penning down my way of doing it.

Recipe Source : My Own

Ingredients :

Eggs - 6 (Hard Boil for 10 minutes)

To Crackle:

Mustard Seeds - 1 1/2 tsp
Jeera - 1/2 tsp

To Fry :

Onions - 2
Green Chillies - 4
Ginger - Garlic Paste - 1/2 tsp
Tomatoes - 2

Powders :

Corriander Powder - 2 Tbs
Chilli Powder - 1/2 Tbs
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
Salt - To Taste

Method :

Heat oil. Crackle the items. Add the onion mix and fry. When light brown add the powders and roast. Then add the ginger garlic paste and roast. Add the tomatoes and fry till oil separates. Add salt and little water and mix well.  Add the eggs. Mix gently and set down.

I am sending this to The Kerala Kitchen  hosted by Magpie

Friday, March 18, 2011

Bread Upma

An easy peacy breakfast for you and the best way of utilising bread before they stale. I am a huge fan of bread. I have mentioned about it in my earlier posts. I am not saying about it all over again. The Indian store near our apartment have all the basic stuffs. It is a bliss that we get canned coconut milk and shredded coconut over there. Our traditional kerala snacks like achappom, murukku everything is available. But I have found that both bread and milk they provide will be almost close to expiry. During several trips of Indian grocery store this has happened and we have even told the manager about it and of no use. Here you will get milk in one big can and it will take us atleast one week to finish it. Both of us are not active coffee drinkers. The bread craving inside me compelled me to have a sandwich for dinner and not with a second thought I put the bread packet into my shopping cart. When I came home I made the sandwich and next day morning the bread packet is looking at me and saying "you can use me fast or else you can throw me away". Then I got down myself to make one of my favorite breakfast item.

Recipe Source : My Mom

Ingredients :

Bread - 8 slices
Onion - 1
Green Chillies - 4
Dry chilli Bits - 4
Carrot Grated - 1
Salt - To Taste
Milk - Little (To sprinkle on the bread cubes) 

To Crackle : 

Mustard Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Urad Dal - 1/2 tsp

Method :

Cut the bread into cubes and sprinkle enough milk on the bread cubes. Add a little salt also. Mix gently with hand or toss and keep for 10 minutes. Heat Oil. Crackle the items. Add the onion mix and fry. When the green chillies turn color add the bread pieces and mix. Add little more oil as required and fry the bread pieces. 

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Margarita Grilled Chicken

Grill, Grill, Grill !!!! That's my motto these days. I am putting the grill to maximum use. Oiless cooking. Sounds so great. This can be served as an appetizer. But we ate it as main course along with bread. I have been thinking of grilling chicken mixing with wine or some other alcohol for a long time. Mixing it with alcohol, sounds interesting, right?? Chicken which gives you a kick. Marinate the chicken breasts overnight in margarita mix. This is a delicious and easy recipe. First I tried to grill one chicken piece because I was little skeptical about being the taste so bland without any masala. And boy I was right. It was very bland to my taste. Then, I added our Indian masala's to it. The effect was an alcoholic spicy chicken. It was too good. Remember, no oil in it !!!

Recipe : My Own

Ingredients : 

skinless & Boneless chicken breast - 4 pieces
1 cup bottled margarita mix
pepper Powder - 1 tsp
Chilli Powder - 2 tsp ( Both depend upon your spice levels)
Salt - To Taste

Directions :

Pour the margarita mix into a large resealable plastic bag. Add the chicken breasts, and press out as much of the air as possible before sealing. Marinate overnight in the refrigerator. Preheat the grill. Lightly oil the grill grate. Remove chicken from marinade, and discard the marinade. Apply all the powders and keep it aside for 2 hours. Grill chicken 4 minutes per side, or until juices run clear.

PS: I didn't marinate the masala for 2 hours because I decided to put in the masala in the last minute. Marination will add the flavor. I used George Foreman Grill.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Award Time

Priya of  Now Serving has given this One Fine Desert Award for participating in her event Best Western Desert. Priya, Thanks so much for passing on the award.

I am also thankful to fellow blogger Ambreen of Simply Sweet 'N Savory passing this wonderful award to me. Thanks for the support and encouragement !!!

The rules of this award are:

1. Accept the award. Post it in your blog with the name of the blogger who has given you this award with a link to his/her blog.
2. Pass it on to 15 other blogger friends…. to keep the ball rolling.
3. Let the nominated blogger know about their award [leave a comment in their most recent post].

I am passing this to my fellow bloggers:

1. Jaisy James of entepachakashala
2. Priti of Indian Khana
3. Ramya of Hot From My Oven
4. Hasna Jabeer of Kachuss Delight
5. Divya of Easy Cooking
6. Suma Rowjee of Cakes And More
7. Tina of
8. Pavithra of Dishes From My Kitchen
9. Nithya of 4th Sense Cooking
10. Vidhya of Sugar N Spice 
11. Rose of Magpie Recipes
12. Aliena of What's Cooking
13. Dhivya Karthik of Chef in you
14. Prerna Singh of Indian Simmer
15. Soma Rathore of eCurry

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Paneer & Sweet Corn Curry

I am here again with our all time favorite Paneer. I am trying out all posibble combinations with paneer. Whenever I go to a north Indian restaurant i will order paneer butter masala. You can see the recipe here. It is one dish I love to cook often. Anybody tried adding sweet corn to paneer?? Yes, my mom had done it. As usual I was even more happy to try out yet another dish of hers. After I started blogging always I try recipes from internet and other blogs and have kept aside my mom's cook book. Yesterday I thought to prepare one from it. I knew it will never go wrong. After all it's my mom's recipe. When I was in high school, My class teacher used to put my names for elocution and recitation. They will give the subject for elocution so that students can prepare on it. If I am preparing by myself then I won't be having the confidence but if my mom prepares it, then I am sure that I will win. She writes so well. I can't stop counting her talents. She is good at cooking, gardening, writing and what else... Whoever visited my humble home will definitely agree with the gardening part!!! Let's come to the recipe now. Otherwise I will keep on writing about her.


Paneer - I cup cubed
Sweet corn kernels - 1 cup (Boil & Drain)

Grind : Half a handful of broken nuts in 2 Tbs warm milk for 20-30 minutes. Then grind along with 3 cloves garlic ans a very small piece ginger.

To Crackle: 

cinnamon - 2 pieces
cardamom - 2 pieces
Jeera - 1/4 tsp

To Fry : Onions 1 ( Here onions are very big, use 2 onions if they are small)


Chilli Powder - 1 1/2 tsp
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp

Tomatoes - 2
Curd - 1/4 cup
Cream - 1 1/2 Tbs
Sugar -  1/2 tsp
Garam Masala - 1/4 tsp
Salt - To taste

Method :

Heat oil. Crackle the items. Add the onions and fry till brown. Add the powders and roast lightly. Add the cashew paste and the tomatoes and fry.  Add rest of the ingredients except paneer and corn and simmer till oil seperates. Add the paneer and corn and mix well. Enjoy !!!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Date Pickle

Anybody in the mood for sweet, tangy, spicy pickle??? Well, both of us are very much in the mood. I have never tried my hands at making pickle. I never knew it's so simple and easy process. I love spicy food and I don't have to mention how much I am fond of pickles. When I was in hostel my roomie and myself used to survive on mom's homemade pickle. It used to get emptied very fast. All of us in my office will also be waiting for the spicy goodness. Whenever I go home I will be getting demands from my colleagues to bring packets of it. I remember stocking up her fish pickle in my hostel room and whenever the food is bad, pickle becomes our Saviour.

I usually don't like to do much of cooking during weekends. Saturdays are resting day for me and I won't be in a mood to cook anything on sunday after church. Lunch will be from church on all sundays and by the time we reach home it will be almost evening. This weekend was little different. 'A' was preparing for a certification course and I was having all the time in the world. Both of us don't like to eat dates in the raw form. But recently when we visited one of our relative they had yummy date pickle and I forgot to ask them about the recipe. I started searching relentlessly on the net. Finally I got some recipe to hang on. Now I am sure this one will top my list of favorite pickles !!!

Here goes the recipe:

Seedless Dates – 500 gms

Ginger-garlic paste – 4 tbsp

Chilli powder – 5 tbsp

Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp

Salt – 5 tsp

Sugar – 3 tbsp

Vinegar – 1/2 cup

Water – 1/2 cup

Oil – 5 tbsp

Method :

Cut each date into 4 pieces.  Heat oil in a pan and add the ginger-garlic paste. Fry on a low flame till the aroma comes out. Add chilli powder and turmeric powder. Stir and add vinegar, water, sugar and salt. When it starts boiling, add the chopped Dates. Simmer till the gravy is thick and it coats well on the Dates. Put off the fire. Cool and transfer it to a glass jar. This pickle can be served immediately. Store in the refrigerator. It has a long shelf life. Enjoy!

I am sending this to Kerala Kitchen contest hosted by Magpie Recipes 

The details about the group can be seen here.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Paneer Jhalfrezi

Jhalfrezi is an anglicized version of dry or gravy-less curry. This recipe can be prepared in jiffy when you have very less time in hand. Paneer and capsicum are our all time favorite. So I thought of making paneer jhalfrezi. It goes well with paratha, roti or pulao. Couple of days back I got an invitation for Bay Area Food Bloggers Meet. It will be fun to meet people who share same interest. I am looking forward to meet everyone. I will update about the meet in my next post.

Recipe Source  : My Mom


Paneer - 200 gms
Ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
Chilli Powder - 1 tsp
Corriander Powder - 3/4 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Onions - 2
Capsicum - 1
Tomato - 1
Lemon Juice - 1 Tbs
Jeera - 1 tsp


Heat 2 Tbs oil. Crackle jeera. Add the capsicum and onions and when transluscent, add the powders and roast. Then the ginger- garlic paste and roast. Add the tomatoes and fry. Then add the paneer and lemon juice and cook for 2-5 minutes.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Chocolate Cup Cake

"When you look at a cupcake, you've got to smile".

 Anne Byrn

Good things come small. A cupcake is a small cake designed to serve one person, frequently baked in a small, thin paper or aluminum cup. As with larger cakes, frosting and other cake decorations such as sprinkles are common on cupcakes. A standard cupcake uses the same basic ingredients as standard-sized cakes:  butter, sugar, eggs, and flour. Nearly any recipe that is suitable for a layer cake can be used to bake cupcakes. Because their small size is more efficient for heat conduction, cupcakes bake much faster than layer cakes.You can serve cupcakes for parties , as there is no mess of cutting it like layered cakes. Different shaped cup cake stands are available in stores. You can use these for birthday celebrations, bridal shower and for weddings. I am adding few pictures of different varieies of cup cake trees and stands.

Recipe Source:


Chocolate Cupcakes:

1/2 cup (50 grams) Dutch-processed cocoa powder

1 cup (240 ml) boiling hot water

1 1/3 cups (175 grams) all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup (200 grams) granulated white sugar

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Chocolate Fudge Frosting:

4 ounces (120 grams) unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped

2/3 cup (150 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 1/3 cups (160 grams) confectioners (powdered or icing) sugar, sifted

1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Method :

Chocolate Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Lightly butter, or line 16 muffin cups with paper liners.

In a small bowl stir until smooth the boiling hot water and the cocoa powder. Let cool to room temperature.

In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.

Then in the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and beat only until incorporated. Then add the cooled cocoa mixture and stir until smooth.

Fill each muffin cup about two-thirds full with batter and bake for about 16-20 minutes or until risen, springy to the touch, and a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost with icing. You can either spread the frosting on the cupcakes with a small spatula or if piping, use a large Wilton 1M open star tip to make lovely swirls.

Chocolate Frosting: Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.

In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter until smooth and creamy (about 1 minute). Add the sugar and beat until it is light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Beat in the vanilla extract. Add the chocolate and beat on low speed until incorporated. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until frosting is smooth and glossy (about 2 -3 minutes).

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Corn Meal Crusted Chicken

I had planned to make this post long time ago. But it just got delayed. 'A' used to tell me about George foreman grill quiet often. The grill is known to remove excess fat from the meat. The most common use of a George Foreman Lean Mean Fat Grilling Machine is to cook cuts of meat, but you can also grill vegetables, make quesadillas, and fry bacon on these machines. It's best to fry bacon . You will get a shock when you see the amount of fat stripping from the bacon while you grill it. If you are frying it in a normal sauce pan remember that all those excess fat are going to your stomach. The grill focus on healthy cooking and it has got an easy-to-use grilling function. The smaller version of Foreman's Lean Mean Fat-Reducing Grilling Machine is terrific for preparing fast, low-fat meals--particularly for couples or single people. I love grilled food. You can eat it guilt - free. 


4 chicken breast halves, boneless/skinless
 2 large eggs
3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 teaspoon lemon pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Dash of salt, if desired
1/4 cup grated fat-free Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons lime juice


Rinse and drain the chicken breasts. Set two shallow bowls or pie plates on the counter. Place the egg  in one bowl and the cornmeal mixed with the lemon pepper, red pepper, salt, and cheese in the other bowl. Rub the chicken with the lime juice. Dip one piece of chicken at a time in the egg and then coat evenly with the cornmeal mixture. If you have time, place on a wire rack to dry out a little.

Make sure the grill is very hot. Spray the grill fairly heavily with vegetable oil cooking spray, then place the chicken on the grill and spray the top of each piece lightly. Cook for 8 to 15 minutes, turning as desired, until the chicken is tender and lightly browned.

Serve with salsa if desired.