Sunday, September 16, 2012

Mocha Almond Cookies


I have been struggling to get cookies right.. I have no problem in making Nankhatai.. its very easy, but making proper cookies does take time.. After so many attempts.. my cookies started getting better.. This cookie has a subtle flavour of coffee and surprise element of Almonds...Freshly baked cookies with hot chai is heavenly.. You can make this cookies in batches.. keep the remaining dough wrapped in aluminium foil in the fridge and use as and when required...

Ingredients:

100 gms butter
100 gms light brown sugar
30 gms caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp instant coffee granules, dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water(take mild ones)
1 egg
175 gms plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
90 gms Almonds( toasted and chopped or ground in small pieces)

Method:

Put the butter and both the sugar in a bowl and beat till its light and fluffy. Put the vanilla extract, coffee, and egg in a seperate bowl and whisk with fork lightly, and add this mixture to the butter and sugar mixture in two batches and beat till fuffy.
Sift the flour, baking powder and baking soda and mix properly so that soda and baking powder is well combined with the flour.. Now add this flour mixture in the butter mixture and fold in carefully. Also add almonds and fold in to the mixture. If the dough is too sticky, you can chill it in the fridge for half an hour.

Preheat the oven at 180 degrees C. Grease the baking sheet and spoon small teaspoonfuls of the mixture on it allowing space for the cookies to spread. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until the sides turn slightly brown. Leave to cook on the sheet for few minutes and then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.. Store this cookies in an airtight container for later use..


Friday, September 14, 2012

About me and the blog...

Hi,

This post is all about myself and my blog.
About Me

I love food.. and never miss any party whatsoever... I love to try different kind of food.. I was born in a Brahmin family and all my neighbours were Gujratis..Our family was lower middle class.. There are pros and cons of living in a lower middle class- middle class family and even surrounded by them.. Pros are we know all our neighbours, .. we exchange foods.. our doors are open most of the time.. All the kids in the building are our friends.. We even know their relatives.. Its a very friendly environment.. We help each other on every possible basis... Its fun..
The most dangerous cons i can think is.. GOSSIPS...healthy gossips are fine.. but not the unhealthy ones..Neways here my liking for Gujrati foods started...

My mom still stays in the same building... on the 4th floor of the building(which is the last floor) and thrs no lift... We still have some of our Old neighbours there.. and even now you will see ,their doors are open.. and everytime I go to visit mom I have to spend sometime at each our neighbour's place before I reach 4th floor...But I dont mind..its just brings back my old memories.. Infact I make sure I visit there everytime I travel Mumbai..

I strongly believe in Love.. I love romantic movies.. I strongly favor Love Marriages.. If you know that you really love someone.. just go ahead and tell him/her.. dont worry about rejection, atleast you wont regret later... In my case..
My interest in cooking started after marriage.. I learned Mangalorean style cooking from my Mother in Law.. My love for Mahrashtrian food started after I tasted my Sis in law's home food... I dont restrain myself from trying any kind of food.. I had been to Hongkong with my husband, and one of our local friend took us to Lama Island and there we tried different varieties of sea food.. I tasted duck for the first time in HK.. and it was delicious with crispy skin.. I somehow didnt like their desserts.. its little strange and you need to develop the taste to like it.. Whenever I visit any place, my only interest is to taste their local food.. Ohh How I love Food...

In my Free time,  I read novels like Nancy drew(during college days), John Grisham(legal thrillers), Michael Crichton(science fiction), etc.. I never liked Sidney Sheldon novels.. dont know why.. I watch Mentalist, Castle, Criminal Minds,  (Mystery TV series)... Masterchef Australia, Greys Anatomy, or any good movies... I dont like any of those Ekta serials.. I dont like sad stories..

I love shopping.. shopping for clothes.. for shoes....junk jewellery(I even started making beads jewellery).. I am totally a Shopaholic...I am learning to control this habbit.. its difficult.. but am trying.. Wish me luck..

Will post some of my jewellery creation in this blog later..
About My Blog

This blog is about food I learned at different stages of my life and hence the name Shweys Food Journey..

During my initial learning phase I used to read lot of blogs, watch all cookery shows.. even read all the cookbooks(gifted by my friends).. I learned some of the cooking from my Mom and some from my Mother in law.. I also learned some from my gujrati friends... So many recipes I even learned in my office during lunch break.. We had a big group of girls.. and we used to taste everybodys's food.. and share recipes.. They all were like me.. newly married and learning to cook.. When I left the job, they even gifted me with so many cookbooks.. and that too amazing cookbooks.....All these people have contributed in my learning process... and hence now when I know I can cook good food.. I decided to make this blog and dedicate it to all the people who contributed in some ways in making me good cook..  It is also dedicated to my husband and my son who taste my food everyday and give their comments which helps me in becoming a better cook...Thank you guys.. and Love u... :)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Mixed flour Thalipeet



This idea of mixed flour bhakri came to me when I had no wheat flour left. I was so bored of eating rice..and wanted to eat chapathi or roti or anything healthy.. At the same time I didnt wanted to go for shopping as was feeling too lazy.. One month back I had brought some 3 -4 types of flour.. just to add little with wheat flour while making Rotis.. to add some more nutritional value to  it.. I usually do that.. I sometime add little Nachni flour, or Maize flour, Jowar flour, Rajgira flour or even Bhajra flour to my Wheat flour while making the dough and make Rotis.. Started thinking of all this nutrition stuff after my kid started eating solids..

Its those stages in life.. where when you first learn to cook.. you want to make tasty food, want ppl to praise your food.. but then theres a stage where you see the effects of food on health.. and start becoming more conscious about the amount of fat that can be reduced and nutritional value that can be increased in your daily food. Well I am in that second stage now.. and always keep searching and reading about healthy recipes wherever I can find and this recipe is the result of that..

Not only its healthy and delicious.. its also very easy and quick to make..This may not be the traditional Maharashtrian Thalipeet, but its my version of Thalipeet..

Ingredients:

1 cup maize flour
1/2 cup bajra flour
1 cup rajgira flour
1/2 cup chickpea flour
1/4 tsp roasted coriander powder
1/4 tsp chilly powder
1 small onion chopped finely
few stalks of coriander leaves chopped finely
salt as per taste
2 tbsp thick curd
water as required

Method:

Mix all the ingredients by adding little little water as required to make a thick sticky dough. Keep aside covered for 5 to 10 minutes. Now take a cling film sheet and put drops of oil on it and grease the sheet. Put a medium size ball of dough on the sheet and keep tapping in circular motion to make a thin bhakri. Heat a flat griddle and add 1 tsp oil on it. Now very carefully put the prepared bhakri and cook it covered for few minutes till it turns light brown. Now turn over and cook covered till the other side too gets light brown. Add little oil on sides and cook for few seconds. Serve hot with curd and pickle.




Tomato and Peanut Chutney


This chutney is again one of my invention.. My husband always talked about the tomato chutney which he had in Bangalore.. and used to ask me to make something like that ..and for me, I didnt know what all went into making that chutney except for tomato..So I tried different ingredietns like onion, garlic, cocounut, coriander leaves.. and though it was all tasty, I still wasnt satisfied and then.. I tried peanut and tomato combination.. and I loved it.. So here is the recipe..simple.. easy.. and delicious..

Ingredients:

2 medium tomatoes riped and juicy chopped
2 cloves of garlic chopped
pinch of hing
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp chilly powder
1/4 tsp mustard seeds
few curry leaves
2 tbsp roasted peanut powder
salt as per taste
1/2 tsp sugar
2 tsp oil

Method

Heat 1 tsp oil in a pan and add chopped garlic and let it brown a little..then add all masala powder(hing, turmeric powder,and chilly powder) and fry for 2 seconds, add little water if required..then add chopped tomatoes and salt and sugar and cook till it becomes mushy. Now add the peanut powder and close the flame. Let it cool a bit and grind it in a mixer and remove it in a bowl.

Now heat one tsp oil in a small tadka pan and add mustard seeds and let it splutter. Then add curry leaves and fry till crisp.. Pour this over the chutney and its ready to serve..

Cheers!!!

Moong Dal Dosa


Since we are Southindian, dosas are our favourites.. Well I like all kinda food, its my husband's favourite.. but when the demands are like instant ones.. you cant spend time on fermentation, etc... so I invented this recipe... just soak for 2 -3 hrs and grind it with little spices and enjoy... :)

This dosa can be made with all the split dals... and its an ideal breakfast dish as its rich in protien.. You can add your choice of spices or even herbs while grinding and can make it more nutritious...

Most of the time I even add some chopped vegetables and grated cheese on top and cook it on steam... and it becomes my Indian Pizza...or should i say Southindian Pizza....You can use your imagination and do wonders..

Well as far as this recipe goes its a simple one..

Indgredients:

1 cup moong dal (soaked for 2 - 3 hrs)
1 cup urad dal (soaked for 2 - 3 hrs)
1/2 inch peice of ginger chopped roughly
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 green chilly chopped roughly
salt as per taste

Method:

Wash the dals for 3 to 4 times and soak them together for 2 to 3 hours and drain it. Grind these dals finely in a mixer along with ginger, green chilly, cumin seeds and salt by adding the water in which the dals were soaked.. Remove the batter in a bowl and beat it with a spatula for few seconds.

Heat a tawa or a flat griddle and sprinkle little drops of oil and spread evenly. Then put 2 big spoonfuls of the batter and spread it in circular motion to make a thin dosa. Now cover the lid and cook it for few minutes on medium flame till the bottom gets light brown. Flip over the dosa and cook on other side without lid for 2 - 3 minutes. Serve it with any type of chutney of your choice. I served this with tomoato and peanut chutney which you can find in my next post...

Cheers!!!






Monday, September 10, 2012

Vermicelli Vegetable Upma


I am not sure what to call this dish, upma or stir fry... We usually have this for breakfast, so lets call it Upma.. This is my son favourite dish.. he calls it maggie.. :), and am happy as am giving him something healthy.. 

Here I have used Vermicelli made from Hard wheat Semolina. The more vegetables you put, the more tastier it becomes.. You can cut vegetables in thin length wise or small diced ones as i did..

Its important to dry roast the vermicelli till it becomes light brown(otherwise it becomes sticky after cooked).. Alternatively you can buy the roasted vermicelli packet from the super market, in that way you can skip the roasting part and directly boil them.. 

Ingredients:

2 cups wheat vermicelli
1 big onion sliced and cut in middle
1 carrot chopped
few french beans chopped
1/2 capsicum chopped
1 medium tomato chopped
few curry leaves
1 tsp mustard seeds
pinch of hing
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
2 green chillies sliced
1/2 inch ginger chopped finely
few strands of coriander leaves chopped
salt as per taste

Method:

Firstly roast vermicelli and then boil it in hot water with little salt and 1/2 tsp of oil for 3-4 minutes or till vermicelli can break when pressed between two fingers.. the key point is not to overcook the vermicelli. Drain in strainer and pour cold water on it to avoid overcooking as it continues cooking when its hot.

The second part is to make the vegetable mixture. Heat oil in the pan and add mustard seeds and let it splutter.. After that add ginger, green chillies and curry leaves and cook for few seconds. Now put hing and chopped onion and fry till onion turns light brown.. Then add chopped vegetables (carrot, french beans and capsicum) and fry for sometime till its half cooked. Now add tomato and salt and cook for few minutes with lid on.. till tomato becomes little mushy and all vegetables are cooked but still little crunchy. Now add turmeric powder and mix well. Add boiled and drained vermicelli and half of coriander leaves and mix well.. Cover the lid and cook on steam on slow flame for 5 minutes. Remove the lid and stir once again , and then add the remaining coriander leaves and close the flame. Serve hot.

Delicious and healthy..

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Cauliflower Manchurian


There is nothing much to say about this dish... Cauliflower was lying in my fridge for almost 4 days and I was not sure what i wanted to do with it.. I wanted some change from our regular sabzi.. I had made fried rice in the afternoon and the leftover was quite enough for dinner as well.. So thought why not to pair that with Gobi Manchurian.. Thought we will have some gravy to go with the rice.. but by the time i served dinner, most of the gravies were soaked up by cauliflower.. Neways always learn from your mistake.. add cauliflower to the sauce just before serving ...

Ingredients

For the Cauliflower:
250 gms Cauliflower cut into small florets
3 tbsp Cornflour
1/2 cup Maida
4 to 5 tbsp water (just enough to make the batter thick.)
salt and pepper as per taste
pinch of soda

For Sauce
1 medium size Onion, chopped finely
2 garlic, 1 inch ginger, minced together
2 green chillies chopped finely
1 tbsp soya sauce
3 tbsp hot and sweet sauce( if you dont have hot and sweet sauce, just add 3 tbsp ketchup and 1 tsp chilly flakes)
1/2 tsp vinegar
2 tsp cornflour dissolved in little water
2 -3 green onions chopped finely
3 to 4 stalks of coriander leaves chopped finely
salt and pepper (or chilly flakes)

Method

In a bowl mix maida, cornflour, salt and pepper, soda and water to make thick batter. Now add the cauliflower and mix well. Heat oil in a pan and deep fry the cauliflower in batches till brown (keep the flame on medium and make sure your oil is not smoking hot.. as the cauliflower's outer layer wud burn and the inside wud still remain raw.) Set aside.

For the sauce, heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan and add chopped onion, white part of green onions, green chillies and minced ginger and garlic. Saute in high flame for few minutes till the onion starts to change colour. Put the flame on medium and add soyasauce, hot and sweet sauce and vinegar and saute for 1 minute. Now add salt and pepper or chilly flakes and 1/2 cup of water and cornflour mixture. Keep stirring till the sauce thicken. Add cauliflower and close the flame. Garnish with coriander leaves and green part of green onion.

Enjoy :)