Who doesn’t like a good biryani? No don’t answer that, my sister for one, doesn’t like rice and meat together, though as a kid that’s all she ate. Blame it on the size 4 factor! I love food, isn’t that obvious and a good biryani always sets off the drool factor. My favourite biryani is the dry sofiana kinds, not too much masala sticking to the rice, but the aromas…they can set the dullest and laziest heart in action.
2016 has brought with it a whole lot of guests and entertainment. I’ve literally thrown a party every other day of the year so far! But it’s been a fun fortnight with my refrigerator always full of desserts and pastries and quick bites and materials to put together a quick snack.
Yes, it is a good idea to keep some pastry dough handy at all times. Now I come from a family that doesn’t use a microwave so yes it does get difficult to defrost the dough before it can be rolled into these french delicacies, but it’s all part of the game. But if you aren’t as crazy as I am, you can buy these and regular ready to use tart bases at any grocery store, In Mumbai ‘Camy’ or ‘Nature’s Basket’ is a good place to shop for them.
The idea for this recipe was inspired from Masterchef Australia. They often cook their meats (or proteins as they are called) with whole masoor (lentils) and I’ve wondered what kind of a combination that was. My mom does use a mix of three dals, which include masoor dal, when she’s cooking mutton on the bones, but just masoor? Umm, it needed to be tried out.
Since I wasn’t too sure of the marriage of flavours, I went back to my bible, the Food Thesaurus. The combination didn’t exist. Should I or shouldn’t it. I have never been one to shy away from experimentations. So out came the dal and the chicken. What followed thereafter were pure instincts. And am I glad I did try this one out.
This is one of those evergreen recipes that are passed on from mother to daughter or son and from there on to the next generation. I however happened to get it some 20 years from a chef, whose name I sadly can’t recollect anymore, but he worked at the Taj property in Periyar, Kerala. Of course he used the freshest produce possible (plucked off the tree and dried in his own backyard) whereas I had to go to the closest mall!
I love fried chicken, especially the ones that are served at fast food counters. Dipped in batter and deep-fried in hot oil till the chicken skin is crispy and delicious. OMG! just the thought makes me drool.
This is one the simplest salads to put together, if you have good knife skills. The first time I ate a Cobb salad was at Hard Rock Cafe. When the plate came to our table it was the amazing array of colours that threw me off guard, each ingredient forming a perfect line as it lay against each other, beckoning me to throw in the dressings and mix it all up. Food can’t be linear, at least not for me!
For a change, i decided to cook up the chicken breasts Indian style, and am I pleased! The chicken breasts that were supposed to be stuffed with cheese and spinach and cooked in a tomato gravy were instead cooked with black pepper and capsicum! And I teamed it up with a spinach lentil. the god of small green things was definitely going to fall in love with me.:)
This is a completely inspired dish and all credit goes to MasterChef shows on TV. It’s taken a couple of times to perfect, but even when the roulade wasn’t perfectly rolled, it tasted excellent. The play of colours and textures and the excitement of beating chicken into a thin even perfect layer far exceeds the trauma of cracking the flesh whilst you’re rolling it. I’d say forget the inhibitions and just go for it!
Now this is a dish I can devour, no matter when it’s made. It’s simple, rustic and packed with flavours and has all my favourite ingredients. What’s more it gets put together in a jiffy and looks exotic even if it is served with a simple salad like the Sweet Potato, mint and Pomegranate Salad listed here. I’ve added a recipe for Gucamole, just to get the entree, rich in vitamin C.
My fridge is usually stocked with chicken breasts, its one of the easiest and most easily accessible protein element. This pepperoni came all the way from Germany, the last bit of our shopping and to add to my pleasure I had some mozzarella cheese again from Amsterdam. I love travelling only because I get to eat foods of the world and bring back home flavours I love to experiment with.
This simple classic dish, can be made in a million different ways, why in India itself there are many ways of creating this lip smacking delicacy. The Kerala Egg Curry is subtly spiced sauce made with coconut milk; the Mangalorean recipe calls for use of boiled eggs, coconut and red chilies; the Punjabi Egg Masala or anda curry is a spicy curry with boiled eggs,spices and cooked in onion, tomato gravy; the Kolhapuri egg curry has robust flavours and is made by grinding spices along with poppy seeds, the Shahi Egg Curry is rich and is made with cream and sprinkled with kasturi methi and the Gujarati egg curry…am joking most Gujarati’s stay away from all things non-vegetarian, unlike me. My recipe is a combination of flavours I have come to love and understand better over time.