May 2015 | Forks N Knives

Pineapple Pulissery...pineapple in yoghurt gravy.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Pulissery is a sweet and sour preparation made with yoghurt and ground coconut paste. It was not prepared much at our home, may be just during onam or vishu. I had them quite too often post marriage as this is a regular affair at my in-laws place. My mom-in-law makes them the best. I have learned this from her, just that she uses winter melon or ripe mangoes and i have used pineapple here. Fairly very easy, comes together in about 30 minutes and is very very tasty. Infact i have given this recipe to my mom too, which is very rare. Along with avial, we had this moru curry also today.

Kerala Style Avial..Mixed vegetables with coconut.

It's a pleasant saturday afternoon here and the temperature is in 80's(finally!!). Usually on weekends we go to H-Mart and buy some fish or shrimp or any other sea food since hardly is meat cooked much at our place. So much so that i dont even remember when was the last time we had them. Apparently Rakesh has been watching all sorts of (unwanted) documentaries and deciding which is the next meat to be given up. Its been a little more than a year that he had any and since we are only two out here, i dont bother cooking it either. 

Today, as usual after 10 minutes of standing infront of the refrigerator i decided to have a vegetarian affair instead of the usual thing of reaching out to eggs for a quick egg roast or curry. There was a time when i needed fish atleast for one meal of the day and since there was seafood always in abundance in Mumbai, it wasnt an issue at all. But here we need to drive back and forth for a good 1 hour to get some and this has almost made us partial vegetarians. I had all ingredients for making avial along with pineapple moru, so decided upon them for the day. Even though i have my loyalities towards sambar, an occasional avial doesnt hurt. And yes, we like it dry without yoghurt. We never made them with yoghurt, guess its more prominent in northern kerala.

Cauliflower Crust Pizza...Eggless Crust!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Pizza is our favorite junk food. This one sentence sums it all up. As tasty as it maybe, it definitely is not so great for your waist line. This one is a healthy alternative to the traditional pizza. I first heard about them from a workout program that i had purchased called as the 21 Day Fix(I plan to write about this program in few days). Just like most others, i too was very skeptical on trying them as to tell you the truth, i cannot stand caulifower in any form and will do anything and everything to not eat them. I have tried making the crust with eggs, but it turned very soggy and the eggless ones were better i felt. This isnt exactly like the actual pizza base, but then it's not bad either. If you are someone who is trying to watch their weight but would still like to relish few slices of a pizza, this one's for you.

Methi Theplas..

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Methi Theplas are a good way to feed people greens who don't eat them otherwise. This one is my version. Since Rakesh had anyways not had them before marriage, he too likes it,my way...I had couple of  gujrati friends in my class and at times they used to bring theplas in their lunch boxes, and man, no one could beat them, floating in ghee, served with pickle and yoghurt, they were heavenly.

Methi leaves known as Fenugreek in english has many medicinal properties to it. It contains protein, fibre, potassium, vitamin C, iron etc. It helps in controlling blood sugar levels, helps in reducing cholesterol, reduces risk of heart diseases, helps in loosing weight, induces and eases child birth and so many more....

Sabudana Khichdi..

Friday, May 22, 2015

Sabudana know as tapioca pearls in english is a popular breakfast, snack and a fast item prepared mostly in northern parts of India. While in bombay, i have had them almost once every week thanks to all our maharashtrian neighbours. This is fairly very easy to make provided you understand how to adjust timings to soak it. I dont soak it fully in water ever, it turns out to be very soggy and sticky then. Just wash it throughly under running tap water and let it remain in colander for 1-2 hours. After that, again wash it under running water and allow it to rest overnight or for atleast 4-5 hours.

Mango Spinach Smoothie..

Thursday, May 21, 2015
 As the name says, Mango Spinach Smoothie...If you are some one who has trouble getting their daily quota of greens fullfilled, this is an easy way to accomplish it. I try my best to get in one atleast a day with mixed variations(which i will be posting soon). Spinach is very easy to blend and even a low cost blender will give you a very fine smoothie. Spinach is loaded with fibre, vitamin A, K , C, calcium and so much more. Today apart from spinach i have made use of another super green - "Kale". Trust me when i say you are not going to taste them at all, thanks to the sweetness of mango. Lets begin some smoothie action.

Homemade Ghee...clarified butter from unsalted butter..

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

 Is there anyone who doesn't love ghee?? I am yet to find any!! The color, smell, flavor and the taste it adds to anything that is cooked with it is just amazing. We love some generous servings of ghee on paranthas, rotis and indian desserts. Not only does ghee has a high smoke point, it is great for baking too. Ghee is also lactose and casein free as the butter is cooked until the milk solids are totally removed leaving behind some pure liquid gold. Ghee helps in simulating your digestive system unlike other oils which slows them down and deposits in your stomach. Did you know you could get some glowing skin by regular consumption of ghee in limited amounts??

Kerala Egg Curry..

Saturday, May 16, 2015

This is my mom's egg curry. I call it the yellow egg curry. She often makes them with appam and idiappams. Its not very spicy, with limited amount of masalas and the good ness of coconut milk. Made with just few basic ingredients easily available in every household. Lets get cooking.

How To Make Kerala Style Appam Recipe | Spongy Appams | Vellayappam | Kerala Appam with Yeast

Kerala Appams are one among the many favorite breakfast items that we prepare quite often on weekends. They are spongy, fluffy, lacey and oh so light weight and easy on your stomach. Best served with Egg Curry  or Chicken Curry or even this dry coconut chutney that my mom makes(the recipe of which i need to get hold off from her!!). The prepartion isn't as time consuming as Dosa/Idli batter still it does need some advance planning and trust me its no rocket science. Lets get started.

How to hard boil eggs perfectly...Every single time!!

I was among the vast majority of population who never got their eggs boiled perfectly. They weren't undercooked ever. Just that the skin didnt peel off as smoothly as it should have been and most of the time i ended up wasting so much egg white along with the skin. After lot of trials, i have finally concluded the best way to hard boil eggs prefectly. Always!!!

In a sauce pan, fill water almost 3/4th way and allow it it bubble little. 

Place eggs, add a tbsp full of salt and boil on a high flame for 10 minutes. (Salt ensures that the skin comes off easily.) Allow it to cool for 10 minutes, drain the hot water and add some room temperature tap water and allow it to sit for 5- 10 minutes. Peel off the skin, it will come off very easily. And trust me, that irritation of not being able to boil eggs perfectly will be sorted off forever.

Mango Bhapa Doi...Aam Doi Baked

Sunday, May 10, 2015

 Some times back, i had proclaimed my love for Mishti Doi here . Here is another variation to it withsome mango flavour. Bhap in bengali means steam and doi means yogurt, so steamed yogurt.
 I do not have a steamer yet with me, so decided to bake it rather. With just three ingredients, this one  is a champ. Rakesh almost devours it whenever it is made,as any dessert made without all purpose  flour(read baked goodies) is a winner for him. 
 Lets get started with the ingredients.

1 cup of full fat plain yogurt(or greek yogurt), 5-6 tbsp mango pulp, 400 ml condensed milk.

Start by preheating your oven at 350 F(180 C). Mix together the pulp, condensed milk and yogurt. I have added freshly powdered cardamom powder, its optional though but gives a good flavour. 
Mix well.

Pour into the ramekins.

 Place the ramekins into water bath(Baking tray filled with hot water) and bake for around 30 minutes. Turn off the oven, allow the doi to remain in the oven for another 1-2 hours. Cover with a foil and chill in refrigerator overnight. Serve chilled.

Eggless Nutella Cookies...4 ingredient recipe!!

Friday, May 8, 2015

Is there any one in this world who doesnt like Nutella??? If at all, stay away from them. No one should come between you and your jar of Nutella....From cheese cakes to cookies, i dont think there is anything that you cannot make with this tub of heaven. Today,i have made an eggless version of these cookies with just about few basic ingredients and is perfect for that quick tea time snack!
 Lets get baking!!

 First and foremost, we need to have room temperature unsalted butter. I kept mine out for an hour or so and since temperature is in 80's today here in Boston, it came very fast to room temperature. Start by preheating your oven at 350 F(180 C).

Take 4 tbsp butter and 6 heapful tbsp nutella(which was also at room temperature and not directly out of refrigerator) and mix them well. Butter becomes almost invisible and all you see is a creamy mixture.

Next sift 3/4th cup of whole wheat flour or all purpose flour(mine got over) and 1/2 tsp baking powder into the mixture. (If you plan to add egg, crack one egg at this point before adding flour, mix and no need of adding baking powder).

I have added one 1tsp instant coffee powder but its completely optional. Mix well, if the batter looks dry add some milk into it. This batter will be little sticky and if you feel its too sticky to hold, just add some flour.

With the help of a spoon or ice cream scoop for even shape place it in a baking tray lined with parchment paper or foil. (My ice-cream scoop is missing.....) Remember again, batter will be slighlty sticky, no need to worry.

Gently press with a fork and bake around 11-13 minutes, depending upon your oven temperature. Allow the cookies to cool in baking tray for another 5 minutes and in a wire rack for few more minutes. As it cools, it hardens and gets crunchier. These cookies arent very sweet, nutella provides the sweetness, taste the batter for sweetness and add some sugar or condensed milk accordingly. 

Enjoy with your hot cuppa tea or coffee!!

Atte ka ladoo/ wheat flour ladoos..

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The very first time i had them was in Chennai, during my L&T days. A roomie had been to Delhi for diwali and bought them. At first she asked all of us to guess what ladoos were these. From sooji to besan, you name it and we had guessed so many type of grains, only to keep her head nodding a complete NO!!...Finally we all screamed at her, "Ab bata bhi de, kis ka ladoo hain ye??"..Atte ka...screamed she!! As dramatic as it sounds, i and all other roommates of mine were so schoked, this was a first time for us, and man they were the best.
This one is not wheat flour alone, i added sooji(semolina) and gram flour and they are the best!!
Lets get started with the ingredients.

1 cup whole wheat flour, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1/3rd cup sooji, 1/3rd cup bengal gram(chana dal), 1 tsp freshly grounded cardamom powder, 1/2 cup ghee, 1/2 cup nuts of your choice.

Roast and powder bengal gram and keep aside.

Roast sooji and keep aside.

Add half of the ghee and roast wheat flour on a medium flame till it changes color. Be careful not to burn it.

Once roasted half way, add powdered bengal gram and sooji and the powdered nuts along with the remaining ghee. Keep roasting till it turns golden brown. 

Take off the flame and add sugar and cardamom powder. Mix well. Once it cools down a little, start making ladoos out of it.

Dip each ladoo in melted ghee and garnish with some chopped pistachios. 

Keep closed in an airtight container and enjoy whenever sweet cravings strike!!

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