Thursday, December 13, 2012

Baked Palak paneer koftas in makhani gravy

                                     Princess Pea came home from school and requested for an orange gravy . This was accompanied with that that cutest smile and bright eyes . How can mommy say no to such sweet request . But this request survived only till we picked up Jr from his school . He got in the car asking for palak paneer . Do the siblings feel each other's feelings ? Do they have to ask for two different things at a time ? This momma had to come up with something that would make kiddos happy . So here it is ...baked palk paneer kofta in orange gravy .

                                    This is a super easy recipe . The kiddos loved it as both of them got what they had asked for . The koftas are baked instead of frying . While baking the koftas spread a little but once cooled again get in the shape . I baked them in muffin tin to have evenly shaped . This recipe is a nice twist to regular palak paneer .

We need :

Palak Paneer kofta :

10 oz Spinach
1/2 cup grated paneer
1 big potato boiled and grated
1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
2 tbsp corn flour
salt to taste

Makhani gravy :

5 large tomatoes
1 tsp ginger -garlic paste
1 tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp kasoori methi
2 tsp butter
salt to taste
2 tbsp heavy cream

Garnish :

2 tsp Heavy cream
2 tbsp grated cheese

To proceed :

Palak Paneer Kofta :

1) Preheat the oven to 350 F .
2) Grease the muffin tin with oil .
3) Blanch spinach in boiling water and refresh in ice cold water .
4) Drain and squeeze out as much water as possible .
5) Chop the spinach finely .
6) Add grated potato ,paneer to chopped spinach .
7) Add ginger-garlic paste  .
8) Add corn flour and salt and mix well .
9) Form the mixtures in round shape .
10) Bake the koftas for 15 minutes .
11) Let them cool and form the shape again .
12) Keep aside .

Makhani Gravy :

   This is adapted from the master chef Sanjeev Kapoor's recipe .

1) Quarter the tomatoes and microwave on high for 4 mins with red chilli powder .
2) Grind the cooked tomatoes to a fine paste .
3) Heat butter in a heavy pan .
4) Add ginger-garlic paste with a tsp of water .
5) Fry for a minute .
6) Add tomato paste and let cook for 3-4 minutes .
7) Dry roast kasoori methi and crush it with your palms .
8) Add garam masala and salt .
9) Add heavy cream .
10) Bring it to a boil and turn off the heat.

To serve :

    Pour the makhani gravy over the koftas and garnish with heavy cream and grated cheese . Serve with roti,paratha and rice .

Enjoy !!!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Potato rosti with poached egg

                                    Having a teenager boy in home is not easy on moms . And when that kid is busy with many activities , store bought snacks are definitely not for him . Then come many fads and trends that he wants to follow . One of many such fads is having some classy ,elegant , fancy aka restaurant style breakfast . Jr wants to have elaborate breakfast at 6:30 in the morning . His growing body needs a proper start of the day and I want him to go to school with a happy face .
                                    I wanted to impress Jr with the the breakfast . I wanted to present all the good stuff  in a fancy way . Here is the solution to this problem . The rosti is a nice twist to hash browns . The poached egg served on top of the rosti along with homegrown tomatoes and avocadoes make a perfect dish to brighten your day . This was served with berry parfait topped with homemade granola to make it a balanced dish .

We need :

3 medium potatoes , boiled
1 tsp ginger-garlic-chilli paste
salt to taste
1 egg
salt and black pepper to taste
1/2 avocado , sliced
1 baby tomato halved
2 tsp butter

To proceed :

1) Peel and loosely grate boiled potatoes .
2) Add ginger-garlic-chilli paste .
3) Add salt to taste and mixed lightly not to break grated potatoes.
4) Heat a heavy bottom pan and melt 1 tsp butter .
5) Lightly press the potatoes and cook till the bottom turns golden brown , for about 3 minutes .
6) Turn and cook  the other side for another 3 minutes or till it turns golden brown.
7) Bring water to a rolling boil in a deep pan and lower the heat .
8) Crack egg in the water and cook the way you like . Jr likes it well done/ fully cooked .
9) Carefully place the potato rosti on a plate .
10) Top it with poached egg .
11) Season with salt and black pepper .
12 ) Serve with avocado slices and sliced tomatoes .

                         I did not add cheese on it but you are welcome to add it . I served it with berry parfait but can be served with milk ,coffee or juice .

                  Enjoy friends and keep warm .


Saturday, December 8, 2012

Santra Bhat / Orange flavored sweet rice

                             Yesterday Mr AJ came home from work with a ginormous box of Florida oranges . And the oranges are huge . Though happy , my first thought was how are we going to finish so many oranges before they go bad ? Without realizing both of us were going down the memory lane . Winter ,the month of December , the winter assembly session and market full of oranges . We come from the Orange city ,Nagpur . It's the time when you feel refreshed with the sweet and citrusy scent of oranges in the air . I remember my childhood days when dad would come home with 'shekda ' meaning 100 oranges and we never worried about finishing them . A guest was welcomed with a basket full of oranges and family and formal gatherings were incomplete without them . The sweets shops were always busy with the santra burfi as the ministers ,their staff and people from mantralaya would place large orders of santra burfi and oranges  to distribute and take home . On home front mom would make Santra Bhaat which is a variation of Sakharbhaat . The memories of home made me make this dish today .

                              Traditionally this is a part of main course and made on special occasions . It's made when oranges are in season as they are super sweet and not tangy . The rice is easy to make and is done in no time . This can be eaten warm as a main course or chilled or at room temperature as a dessert . The oranges I have are so big , I decided to serve the bhaat in orange peel rather than in a dish . That enhances the flavor of the bhaat and give it a nice aroma . Let's roll our sleeves and head to the kitchen ...

Ingredients :

1 cup rice
2 Tbsp Ghee
4 cloves
1 cup chopped orange segments
1 cup water
1 cup freshly sqeezed orange juice
1 Tbsp orange zest
1/4 cup sugar
pinch of salt
6 pods of cardamom
2 Tbsp almond and pistachio slivers

Garnish :

1 Tbsp pistachio slivers
a few orange segments
remaing orange halves left after juicing

To proceed :

1) Wash and soak the rice for half  hour .
2) Drain the water from rice .
3) Heat ghee in a heavy bottom pan and add cloves to it .
4) Add the rice and roast till the grains look shiny .
5) Boil 1 cup of water and add it to the rice .
6) Add a pinch of salt .
7) Cook the rice halfway .
8) Add chopped orange segments and continue cooking .
9) Powder the cardamoms along with sugar .
10 ) When the rice is 80% done add freshly squeezed orange juice and sugar cardamom powder and the orange zest .
11) Cover and cook till the rice is done .
12 ) Add almond and pistachio slivers and cover and let it steam for 2 mins .

To serve :
 Serve in orange halves and garnish with slivered pistachios and orange segments .

**Orange zest actually gives that orangy aroma to the rice .
** If the orange half is not sitting well , you can cut a thin slice to make it flat .
** If you don't want the rice to touch the orange half , you can line it with a paper cupcake liner and fill it with the rice .

Enjoy !!!

Avocado Basundi

                                  Yes...I am not confused nor is this typo.. We at the Kane's Coop love avocadoes . We can have it at every meal and eat them as they are as a snack also . I have already tried avocado in many Indian recipes but not in any dessert . After many days I was having the urge to try something new . I wanted to make something totally new ,dramatic and something that you can not find after google search . All of us have a very sweet tooth .  Mr AJ  surprised me with my favorite roses and I decided to surprise him with Avocado basundi .
                                   Basundi is a milk derived sweet like most of the Indian sweets .It is a speciality from Maharashtra . Milk is reduced to half of the quantity and flavored with sugar and Indian spices as cardamom and nutmeg . Avocado being creamy and slightly on a sweeter ( some even call it bland ) side worked well for this recipe . Addition of avocado makes this dish healthier than the original recipe ; as I did not have to reduce the milk and it still turned out to be as creamy as the original recipe . I reduced the amount of sugar in it as avocado added it's own sweetness to it . It gave a very nice light green color to the dish . And most importantly Jr and Princess Pea approved it .

We need :

1 Avocado ,mashed
2 cups Milk
6 Tbsp sugar
2 cardamoms powdered
a pinch of nutmeg powder
4 Pistachios blanched and sliced to garnish

To proceed  :

1) Boil 2 cups of milk in a heavy bottomed pan and simmer for 5 minutes .
2) Add sugar ,cardamom -nutmeg powder .
3) Add mashed avocado and simmer it for another 2-3 mins. After adding the avocado the milk will be creamy .
3) Garnish with pistachio slices .

This can be served warm or chilled with puri , chapati like the way Maharashtrians eat or in a bowl as a dessert .

Friday, December 7, 2012

Lotion Bars

                          Xmas will be here in no time . Princess Pea and Jr have a long list of friends to give gifts . This cold weather is drying out the skins . Princess Pea has sensitive skin that makes me picky while choosing products . I decided to make my own lotion bars . Thanks to Ash for inspiring me all the time , I decided to make my own lotion bars . They are hard lotion bars and that makes them easy for carrying in the purse . They are convienient to use and carry . The oils are gentle on her skin and are helping with her eczema .

We need :

4 oz Beeswax
3 oz coconut oil
2 oz Almond oil
2 oz Avocado oil
1 oz Jojoba oil
2-4 drops of essential oil ( optional )

To proceed :

1) Melt beeswax in a double boiler .
2) Add the rest of the oils and melt again .
3) Add the essential oil .
4) Pour in silicone molds .
5) Let them cool for some time till they are set . Mine were in the mold for about 6 hours as I went out after pouring them .But they are ready in less than 1/2 hour .
6) Unmold and store in a cool place .

                                    The lotion bar melts with the body heat .So it's easy for small kids to apply lotion on their own . Friends,give it a try and let me know what do you feel about it ...

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Baked sabudana vada with peanuts chutney

                           Sabudana vada is an all time favorite in my home . But now a days Mr.AJ has been talking a lot about eating healthy .But that definitely does not mean we will give up eating our favorite food . There has to be an alternative for this . While watching TV with Princess Pea , I had seen a commercial of baked potato chips . And then the bells started ringing . If chips can be made without frying why not our very own sabudana vada ? The baking does not affect the taste of the vadas . The peanuts chutney completes the dish .
We need :
Vadas :
1 cup Sabudana

2 medium potatoes
1/4 cup peanut powder
2 green chillies
1/2 " ginger
1 tsp cumin
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
salt to taste

Chutney :

1/4cup peanuts
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 cup yogurt
1 green chilli
salt and sugar to taste

 To Proceed :
Vada :
1) Wash and soak the sabudana for atleast 4 hours .
2) Boil and mash the potatoes .
3) Dry roast the peanuts and grind to a coarse powder .
4) Make ginger ,chilli and cumin paste .
5) Preheat the oven to 350 F .
6) Line a baking sheet with foil .
7) Mix soaked sabudana with the peanut powder,ginger chilli paste ,cilantro ,lemon juice and salt .
8) Shape into balls and flatten them a little between the palms .
9) Spray both sides of the vadas with cooking oil spray .
10) Bake in a preheated oven for 30 minutes .
Chutney :
1) Dry roast peanuts and grind with cumin ,salt ,sugar and chilli .
2)Whisk the yogurt and mix with the peanut mixture .
3) Adjust the consistency by adding little water .
          Serve warm vadas with the peanut chutney ....Here is to guilt free eating...yippe...

Oats dry fruit laddu

            My dad has a very sweet tooth . He can actually have dessert from breakfast to dinner . I remember my childhood days when my dad would eat laddu with chapati also . I know , it's hard to believe . Someone eating laddu as a side...yes...that's my dad . So when the doctor told him to control his sugar intake as the sugar levels are on borderline and need to be monitored , guys you would guess right ..There is a BIG PROBLEM .. A meal without sweets..No way ; my dad would say . Doctor asked him to eat oats also which he does not like . He does not like the texture of the cooked oats . That was a challange for my mom . She asked me to make something that is without added sugar but still sweet . So the solution to this problem is here . Oats dry fruit laddu...Packed with nutrients ,fibers and lots of love.. And they taste like the "Dink laddu or edible gum laddu" .

We need :

1 cup Oats
20 Seedleess dates
5 dried apricots
fistful dried cranberries
10 almonds
10 walnuts
10-15 pistachio nuts
2 Tbsp Flax seeds
1 tsp white Seasame seeds
1/2 tsp Khaskhas (poppy seeds)
1/2 tsp methi seeds ( Fenugreek seeds)
1 tsp Everest milk masala
2 tsp Ghee ( clarified butter)
2 Tbsp coconut powder

To proceed :

1) Roast oats in microwave for 2 minutes till you can smeel the toasty ,nutty  oats.
2) Roast almonds,pistachios ,walnuts,flax seeds ,seasame seeds,khaskhas,methi seeds seperately for 2 minutes each .
3) Coarsly powder the oats and the rest of the roasted ingredients .
4) Grind dates,apricots and cranberries together in a food processor .
5) Mix the powdered oats and dry fruits with date-apricot mixture .
6) Add milk masala .
7) Add ghee and form small laddu .
8) Roll the laddu in coconut powder .

The laddus are ready to eat . You can change the dry fruits and their quantity as per your liking . You can adjust the sweetness by adding or reducing the dates .

I can not say how long the laddus will last as they were gone in less than 2 hours in my home . :)

Enjoy them in this cold weather friends ..

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Egg Methi Malai

                                  It's halloween .. Kids are super excited to wear their costumes and go trick or treating . Halloween is associated with different colors ; orange, green and purple . Pumpkins and corn...
                                  I wanted to make dinner on the same theme. Kiddos love eggs . And they go well on cold nights . I had methi (fenugreek) leaves in the fridge . Moms always want to make greens appetizing for kids . Same goes with me too . This was a perfect occasion when they ould be eating without any fuss . I made spooky vegetable biryani to along with the curry . Hope recipe of the spooky biryani makes to my blog soon...

We need :-

8 Eggs - Hard boiled
2 cups methi -chopped
1 medium onion - chopped
paste of 2" ginger and 3-4 garlic cloves
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
2-3 whole cardamom
2 cloves
Paste of 4-5 cashews and 4-5 almonds soaked for 1/2 hr
1 cup yogurt
1 cup heavy cream ( optional : 1/2 cup heavy cream + 1/2 cup whole milk )
salt and sugar to taste
1 Tbsp Ghee or butter

To Proceed :-

1) Make slits on the hard boiled eggs in a way that they make a plus sign if put together ; i.e. one cut on each side of the egg .
2) Boil the onions in enough water till they are soft and tender .
3) Drain and make paste of boiled onions .This gives a sweeter taste to the gravy .
4) Heat ghee in pan ,add whole cardamoms and cloves .
5) Add the onion paste ,ginger -garlic paste and fry till the oil seperates .
6) Add turmeric powder ,coriander powder and garam masala and fry for a minute .
7) Add chopped methi and fry till the leaves start wilting .
8) Add yogurt and cook till the oil seperates .
9) Add the cashew-almond paste and fry for a minute .
10) Add the eggs and let the masala coat the eggs well .
11) Add salt and sugar to taste .
12) Add heavy cream and cook till the gravy comes to a boil . You can adjudt the consistency either with milk or water if needed .

       Serve warm with rice,pulao,biryani and roti ,naan , poori too . This gravy is on sweeter side and is favored by the kids .

Enjoy !!!