BASIL PINEAPPLE & COCONUT TARTLETS.. Pretty, eh??

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After chocolate my next favorite flavor is pineapple 🍍☺. I had this idea of making a pineapple tart from long. Just couldn’t decide on how to make it different. So I decided on making tartlets having basil pineapple filling topped with coconut cream. My only problem was that I don’t have tartlet moulds 😁. I used cookie cutters which made the tartlets look prettier :D. And the flavors worked really well. Yum!

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Ingredients

For the Shell
8 tbsp unsalted butter
3 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more as needed

For the filling
2 cups diced pineapple
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp butter
Juice of 1/2 lime
Handful of basil
A pinch of salt

For topping
Whipped coconut cream ( I didn’t get coconut cream so I mixed normal whipped cream with coconut powder 😜)
Diced or sliced pineapple
Toasted coconut flakes

Method

1. Combine all the ingredients for the tart shell and knead till a soft dough is formed. Don’t overwork the dough. Wrap in a plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

2. Heat butter in pan. Add diced pineapples. Cook on high flame for a minute then add sugar, salt, basil and 2 tbsp water. Cook on low flame till the pineapples are soft.

3. Roll the dough and place in tartlet moulds. ( You can also use cookie cutters like I did by placing 2 layers of the sides on the base with egg wash or milk. I got the sides by using 2 cutters of same shape, bigger and the medium one.)

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4. Prick with a fork and refrigerate again for 20 mins.

5. Bake for 20-25 mins in a preheated oven at 350Β°F.

6. Bring the shells to room temperature. Put the filling in the base and top with whipped coconut cream, toasted coconut flakes and pineapple dices.

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Serve with tea or as a dessert after dinner. ☺

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I stored the shells in a jar and used them with different fillings as well. When my mother is not around, I quickly take 1 tartlet, fill it with Nutella, top with some whipped cream and eat it all at once… 😁🙊😝

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Munch into Crunchy Herbed Biscotti…

Greetings folks!

After a busy month and a great vacation, here I’m, back to blogging… πŸ˜€

First a bit about the tour… Oh my! It’s the best place I have ever seen πŸ˜† – Andaman and Nicobar Islands. So colorful, soothing, relaxing, clean and there is a lot more to this place. Scuba diving was thrilling.. Beautiful corals, clear water, cute little fishes.. I should really start a travel blog to brag about this place more.. 😜

Radhanagar beach, Havelock Island (rated as best beach in Asia by Times Magazine)
Radhanagar beach, Havelock Island (rated as best beach in Asia by Times Magazine)
Neil island
Neil island
Cloudscape (Looks like Scrat from Iceage to me 😜)
Cloudscape (Looks like Scrat from Iceage to me 😜)

Now about biscotti, It is originated from Italy. Very similar to a rusk but more flavorful and heavy. A freshly baked loaf is sliced and baked again to make it crunchy and dry.

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Usually biscotti are made sweet, but I wanted to try the savory one.

Ingredients
1 cup plain flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup gram flour (you can use plain flour instead)
3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 tbsp red chilli flakes
1 tbsp dried mixed herbs
1 tsp turmeric for color (optional)
1/2 cup + 1 tbsp butter
3/4 cup curd
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
Salt to taste

Method
1. Combine all the ingredients and knead into a dough. Sprinkle water if it is too dry.

2. Preheat the oven at 350Β°F. Roll the dough and place in a greased baking tray. Press down to 1 inch thickness. Sprinkle with flax seeds and chilli powder.

3. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Take out and let it cool for 10 minutes.

4. Slice crosswise carefully keeping the thickness around 1/2 inch.

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5. Brush each side with melted butter (optional). Bake for 5 minutes, flip and bake again for 5 minutes or till the biscotti are well toasted.

And done! πŸ™‚

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Serve these with soups, drinks, as a base for canapΓ© or toss in with any salad. Versatile and easy, isn’t it? πŸ˜‰

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Moist and Sinful… Veg (Soya) Galouti Kebab

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When I first had Galouti Kebab, I never thought it would be so creamy and so flavorful.. The aroma.. The tickling taste buds.. Oh my god! I can’t even explain..Pure bliss.. 😌

It was created for an aging Nawab Wajid Ali Shah of Lucknow who lost his teeth, but not his passion for meat dishes. β€˜Galouti’ or β€˜Galawati’ means β€œmelt in your mouth”. Traditionally, green papaya is used to make the meat tender. After being mixed with a few select herbs and spices the very finely ground meat πŸ–(lamb and beef) is shaped into patties and fried in pure ghee until they are browned. The original recipe is supposed to have more than 100 aromatic spices. 😱

Well I don’t even know the names of 100 spices 😁. So this isn’t an authentic recipe. Actually, I was experimenting with soya kebabs the other day and when I ate the final product, I had the same ‘Galouti-Kebab-feeling’. I have eaten Rajma Galouti Kebab, but it is dry. I feel that this is a better version of vegetarian Galouti Kebab. Plus it is easy… Why don’t you judge it yourself.. πŸ™„

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Here is what you’ll need..

Ingredients

100 gms Soya chunks or granules, soaked

1 medium onion, sliced

6-7 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped

1″ pc of ginger, sliced

1 medium tomato, chopped

2 tbsp roasted chana dal (split Bengal gram)

1/2 cup chopped coriander leaves

7-8 black pepper

1 Bay leaf

3-4 Cardamom pods

4-5 cloves

2″ cinnamon stick

2 dry red chillies

1 tbsp coriander seeds

1 tsp turmeric powder

1 tsp red chilli powder

2 tsp chat masala

Juice of half lime

2-3 tbsp hung curd

3/4 cup bread crumbs

1 tbsp cream

3-4 tbsp butter or ghee

Salt, to taste

Method

1. Heat 2 tbsp butter or ghee in a pan. Add all the whole spices. After the aroma is released,fry garlic, ginger and onion till slightly browned.

2. Add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, tomato and soya. Cover and cook for 5 mins.

3. Bring the mixture to room temperature, add curd, chat masala, coriander, chana dal, lime juice and grind into a fine paste.

4. Now mix cream and bread crumbs. The mixture should form a very soft dough like structure. (add more bread crumbs if you find it tough to handle). Taste and check the seasoning.

5. Grease your palms and give desired shape.(a bit messy work)
Tip: take desired amount of the mixture and roughly give a round shape, put on the heated pan and press. Be careful.

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6. Heat a non stick or a grill pan, brush with ghee or butter and fry each side till golden brown.

Serve hot with mint chutney, raita or ketchup. You can use it a burger patty or as a wrap stuffing. πŸ™‚

Tip : You can use 1 tbsp of garam masala powder instead of whole spices.

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Churros? Nah.. It’s Pommes de Terre Lorette

image Do you think these are churros? Well I can just hope, you do. 😜

I’m very fascinated with the concept of ‘food in disguise’, when the food presented is not what it looks like. It is an element of surprise when the taste buds play with our minds. Some might disagree with me for the same reason.😣 So as an attempt to start this style of cooking I made Pommes de Terre Lorette that looks like churros and to give it a more realistic appearance, I served it with barbecue sauce (store bought) and parmesan powder. (I know I am li’l out of line here, but I don’t mind as long as it tastes good 😁)

Pommes de Terre Lorette is a French dish where creamy mashed potatoes are combined with choux pastry and fried. These are fluffy, creamy and has crispy crust. Easy to make. You just need to keep few things in mind. This recipe was taught to me when I was in college. I absolutely loved the cigar shaped pommes lorette, I mean who does not like potatoes and cheese (that too fried ones):P.

Ingredients

500 gms Potatoes

100 gms processed cheese

Salt and Pepper to taste

Choux pastry

1/2 cup whole milk

1/2 cup water

2 tablespoons butter (1/4 stick)

1 cup all-purpose flour

2-3 eggs Salt and Pepper to taste

Oil for frying

Method

1. Boil water, milk, salt and pepper. Add flour and stir till the mixture forms a ball. Take it off the heat and put potatoes for boiling.

2. Gradually add eggs to the dough and keep mixing till it forms a glossy mixture. It should be of thick piping consistency i. e. if you lift the spoon, the mixture should form a hook.

3. Peel and grate the boiled potatoes. (to avoid starchy mash, don’t overwork the potatoes)

4. Add grated cheese, potato mash and seasonings to the choux paste and mix well. Transfer to a piping bag when it comes at room temperature.

5. On high flame, heat the oil in a deep pan and pipe the mixture. Fry till golden brown. Serve immediately.

I hope you like the recipe. Vegetarians can skip the eggs and add a cup of cream. πŸ™‚ Posted from WordPress for Android

Stuffed Banana Peppers… Then rolled and baked and eaten :P

Homemade midway snacks are great, aren’t they? Especially when you are travelling in a train for 3 days and
And they have only 4 things to offer, veg/non-veg thali and veg/non-veg biryani. Indians will connect with me (very well 😁). As you might have guessed, I am posting this while dancing to the violent tunes of the train πŸ˜₯
From past 2 days me and my mother are preparing meals for both of us and for the fellow travellers. Though I have made many snacks including Nutella Bread, truffles, nachos etc. I will share the recipe of the most liked snack i. e. stuffed banana pepper.Β This looks like a big chilli and has a mild tangy taste. Bright yellow or green in colour and is not spicy at all. In India we make pickles and pakoras (fritters) with these.
Here is what you will need..

6 banana peppers
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp salt

For the stuffing
150g Minced chicken (depending on the size of the pepper)
1 tbsp olive oil
3-4 cloves of garlic
1 green chilli
3/4 cup grated cheese
1/2 cup chopped coriander
Salt and Pepper to taste

For Rolling
2 cups plain flour
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 cup butter
Salt to taste

Method
1. Slit the pepper in middle and take all the seeds out. Dip them in lemon juice, salt and water solution take out and keep aside.

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2. Heat oil in a pan, add garlic, chilli and sautΓ©. Add minced chicken and cook a bit. Let it cool.

3. Knead a dough with the ingredients mentioned and water and rest it in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

4. Mix cheese and chopped coriander with the chicken and stuff the peppers with this mixture.

5. Roll out the dough thin and cut into strips, about 1 inch thick.

6. Brush the strip with water. Put the tip of the pepper on one end of the strip and roll. Keep on sticking stripes till the pepper is covered.

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7. Brush it with milk or beaten egg and bake in a preheated oven at 200Β°C for 12-15 mins.

Serve hot with mint chutney or mayonnaise!

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Now there can be many variations to this recipe.
You can stuff the peppers with any thing you like.Β Then you can grill the peppers, pan fry or deep fry them… Hope you like these.. . πŸ™‚

Just Another Pretty Cake… But Super Easy!

Cakes are something I bake at least ones a week, may be more and never get bored of it. I have so many cake tins and silicone moulds that my mother tells me to open a store 😁.  Fabfurnish.com is my first preferred site for buying these.

From many recipes I have for a cake, I will tell you the easiest one. My sister is fond of the cakes I bake but sadly she stays 1100 miles away from us. 😦 So whenever she comes here or we go to Kolkata, she and her friends get a treat of cakes. ;). The main problem I faced was that the cakes should stay moist, tasty and shouldn’t rot for 5-6 days without a refrigerator.( Since the climate here is hot and humid, it doesn’t last long.) That is why I went for this recipe. It is not very rich yet tasty.

Basic Recipe

3/4 cup water

3/4 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup oil

1 tbsp vinegar or lemon juice

1 tbsp vanilla extract

2 cups plain flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

A pinch of salt

Method

1. Dissolve sugar and salt in water properly. Add vinegar and vanilla extract.

2. Fold in sieved flour, baking powder and soda and flavoring. Batter should be of ribbon consistency.

3. Pour into a greased pan less than 2/3rd. The cake will rise a lot because of soda and vinegar. Bake in a preheated oven at 180Β°c

Very easy, isn’t it?

You can use this simple recipe and make many different flavored cakes. Below are few of I made. πŸ™‚PicsArt_1423722275174

Chocolate and vanilla marble cake. A trick to make your chocolate cake more rich is to boil cocoa powder in a bit of water, cool and use.

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Orange cupcake with Nutella 😍. Instead of vinegar I added orange juice and zest.

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Tutti frutti muffins

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Some colorful cakes..

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Tastes heavenly when served with ice-cream or whipped cream πŸ˜€

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White Chocolate & Strawberry Scones..

This is a quick one guys. Just to deal with the stress of exams. Oh my my! baking is such an addiction! 😍

Ingredients
2 cups plain flour
1/3 cup semolina
2 tbsp butter
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 n 1/2 tbsp strawberry jam (any jam will do)
1/2 cup Buttermilk
4-5 strawberries πŸ“ roughly chopped
3 tbsp white chocolate chips or chopped
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp chopped mint (optional)

Method
1. Soak semolina in buttermilk and baking soda. Keep aside for 10 mins.

2. Beat butter and sugar till a bit fluffy. Add jam and beat again.

3. Throw in the rest of the ingredients and knead a soft dough with the buttermilk mixture. Don’t work it too much. (the dough should be real soft)

4. On a floured surface roll the dough, about 2 cm thick. Cut into desired shapes.

5. Aline on a baking sheet and let it rest of 30 mins ( very important to rest the dough so don’t skip the stepπŸ˜‹)

6. Bake in a preheated oven at 200Β°C for 15-20 mins. If you want to cook it more then flip and bake for 5 more mins. ( I prefer thinner and a tad bit crispy πŸ™‚

7. Glaze with butter and sprinkle sugar. Serve with cream, jam and tea.  ☺

These were so yum that my mum ate them all.😁

As I always say.. Keep experimenting with flavors. Plain ones are also very good. πŸ‘Œ

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