So yesterday I tried to bake a sugar-free oats and yoghurt cake with blueberries. I broke the first rule of baking, didn’t measure my baking powder and over beat the eggs. It ended up being hard and bread like, I don’t usually have such disasters in the kitchen and was super upset. I needed a pick me up. Nothing in my fridge seemed to be right for the moment and I had run out of chocolates That’s when I glanced upon 2 slices of a thin herbed wheat pizza base. My brain started ticking. Should I convert them into quesadillas? (pronounced: cay-suh-dee-yuh) Or may be just turn them into dinner…something that’s warm, simple, wholesome and smooth. The thought of a Baked Cheesy Tortilla brought back a smile. The dish requires very little attention whilst its cooking. It’s almost like a pizza but 100 times more nutritious and loaded with healthy vegetables like mushrooms, spinach, onions, tomatoes and the cheese in it comes from cottage cheese. It’s my go-to-dish, try it and you will know why
I love burgers. And cheese stuffed burgers were the signature dish at my second restaurant. We would make them with different meats and veggies always experimenting with the flavours and textures. Soon stuffed burgers were the only way these patties could be made! I wasn’t surprised when my parents requested for them for a celebratory meal to mark their 51st anniversary. Though the family had chicken burgers, my sis is following Lent and was a vegetarian! And she wanted mini veggie burgers!
My mom has a problem with the food I eat, “How can you eat without rice or flat breads” is a question she often asks. And though I’ve tried explaining the no-carbs at night funda, she just can’t understand it. Your meals do vary from normal when you have a health conscious diabetic in the house! “All you eat is stir-fry, what good is that! It’s just quick cooking,” she laments. There she is right. If you are quick with the knife, your stir fry can be ready in less than 20 minutes. And it’s healthy, full of veggies and gluten-free
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.
So I’ve been bitten by the bug that takes everything sweet and adds a twist to it…blame it on my newly discovered lactose intolerance and acid reflux that makes consuming all those goodies with chocolate into a nightmare for the next five hours. And it doesn’t end there, the deal gets worse, I need to eat every few hours to keep my system safe from damaging itself! Thankfully fruits are my best friends and oats I love…so this recipe was actually designed to give all those 2-hour food habits I must inculcate something tasty to ruminate over!
It’s not often that i read a veggie recipe and get inspired to try it out immediately. But last evening a friend posted a recipe of oats and semolina dhokla–(steamed cake), and that kind of tickled my senses. Plus I have been accused of step-motherly treatment towards Indian food by a very dear doctor friend! I love to cook healthy and i find it really tough to make oil free Indian food, but yes I will try get back into R&D and split the oil away from the masalas and work on it Ash.
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.
If you’re throwing a party and are stuck for ideas or not quite deft in the kitchen, make something quick and relatively easy that can charm your guests! This stuffed bread is often a charmer. I uses a hard bread, which is commonly known as Brun in India. And dipped into the various sauce bottles that are always lined up in my kitchen. All it needs us some cheeses, and fresh herbs and of course an oven.
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!