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Monday, February 19, 2018

Potato Scones

These potato scones aka tattie scones come from Scotland and are a variation to the griddle scone. They have nothing to do with the English tea time baked scones most are familiar with. These unleavened scones are made with liberal quantities of boiled or left over mashed potatoes and butter combined with enough flour to bind. They are then rolled out into about 5 mm thick circles or further cut into quarters and are cooked on a griddle. 

These scones are served warm as a part of a full Scottish breakfast or eaten as a roll with fillings. Alternatively, it is eaten with jam and tea like a baked scone. Potato scones contain a small portion of flour to a large portion of potatoes according to traditional recipes. However I noticed many home cooks mentioning to add the flour until all the ingredients come together which sounds more sensible when rolling out the dough. I used less butter than the recipes mentioned. They tasted like potato rotis made with flour and Indians would enjoy it with a spicy side dish to go with.
Ingredients: (Yield 8 scones)
1 cup peeled, boiled and mashed potato 
1 tbsp. butter
Salt to taste
All purpose flour as needed (I used more than 1/2 cup.)

*  Greasing palms with oil would help if the dough is going to be prepared manually. Combine potato, salt and butter in a mixing bowl and mash together. Add flour to the mixture in small increments and mix, until the mixture holds together without sticking to your hands and the dough is easy to roll. 
* The scones can be either circular or triangular shaped ones. If rolling out into circles, divide the dough into 8 portions and roll out into about 5 mm thick, 5 inched circles, dusting the work surface with flour. 
For triangular ones, divide the dough into two portions. Roll out one portion into a big circle and quarter them using a knife. Repeat it with the remaining dough.
* Heat a griddle or non stick shallow pan on medium flame and spray with some oil. Toast each rolled out piece, flipping once or twice until brown spots appear on both sides. Serve them warm. bmlogo
This goes to Blogging marathon #85, under the theme 'Breakfast Recipes'. Check out the page to read what other marathoners are cooking.


Sunday, February 18, 2018

Sabudana Khichdi / Saggubiyyam Upma

Sabudana khichdi is a popular dish in some parts of India, especially in the state of Maharashtra. As the title indicates, the khichdi is made using sabudana / tapioca pearls. It can be eaten for any meal of the day and is considered as one of the fasting foods given that the regular salt in the recipe is replaced by rock salt.

This khichdi requires a bit of advance preparation since the tapioca pearls need soaking until they turn translucent and soft. The time of soaking depends upon the variety of tapioca pearls used. Some need only a few minutes of soaking where as some need 4 to 5 hours of soaking. I don't soak tapioca pearls in plenty of water but instead use only enough water to cover them. I cover the tapioca pearls' bowl and forget for few hours. Usually they absorb all the water by that time and would have turned translucent and fluffy, ready for use.

Grated ginger, fresh shredded coconut and sugar can be added as well to the recipe though I don't use them.

Ingredients: (Yield 2 servings)
1 cup sabudana / tapioca pearls
1/2 cup peanuts
1 medium sized potato
1 tbsp. oil
1 tsp. cumin seeds
10 curry leaves
1 or 2 green chillies, finely chopped
Salt to taste
Lemon juice to taste
Minced cilantro to garnish

Prep work:
* Rinse tapioca pearls in a colander under running water until it is not cloudy anymore. This helps to get rid of the starch to some extent. Soak tapioca pearls in a bowl by adding water just enough to cover them. Cover the bowl and leave aside for 4 to 5 hours or overnight. 
* Press a soaked pearl between thumb and forefinger to check whether it easily squishes. If not, sprinkle some more water and soak for some more time. (My tapioca pearls took about 5 hours to soak.) Drain any extra water if present.
* Toast the peanuts and skin them. Save about 2 tbsp. peanuts and coarsely grind the rest of the peanuts.
* Peel and cube the potatoes.

The cooking part:
* Heat oil in a pan, preferably a non stick one and add cumin seeds. When they start to brown, add curry leaves and chillies. Saute them for about 20 seconds and add potato cubes. Cover and cook on low flame until the potato cubes turn tender.
* Mix soaked tapioca pearls, peanut powder and salt in a bowl. Add them to the pan and cook covered on low flame until tapioca pearls turn slightly translucent.
* Garnish with cilantro and the saved peanuts.
* Squeeze some lemon juice while serving or it can be added while cooking tapioca pearls.

This goes to Blogging marathon #85, under the theme 'Breakfast Recipes'. Check out the page to read what other marathoners are cooking.


Saturday, February 17, 2018

Jamaican Cornmeal Porridge

This Caribbean cornmeal porridge could be a great breakfast alternative to a bowl of oatmeal or if one is looking for a serving of whole grain in the morning. This creamy bowl of porridge is full of flavors and quite a filling one. It is a classic comfort food from the Jamaican region and is also called 'cog' or 'pop' there. Some of the versions of this recipe use a small quantity of flour also added along with cornmeal.    
Recipe Source: Here
Ingredients: (Yields 1 generous serving)
1/2 cup water
3/4 cup coconut milk
2 one inch pieces of cinnamon 
1/4 cup cornmeal
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
A pinch of ground nutmeg
1 to 2 tbsp. sweetened condensed milk or any other sweeteners

* Heat water, coconut milk and cinnamon pieces to a pan and bring it to a boil. 
* Next add cornmeal and stir well to prevent to form any lumps. 
* Cover and cook on low flame, until done, about 10 minutes.
* Add vanilla extract, nutmeg and sweetened condensed milk to the cooked cornmeal and mix well.
* Add extra milk / water and adjust the consistency if the pudding appears too thick.
* Discard the cinnamon sticks and serve the pudding warm. Add sliced fresh fruits, dry fruits or nuts as garnishes if desired. (My daughter enjoyed it with a sprinkling of some brown sugar, raisins and nuts over the porridge.)
This goes to Blogging marathon #85, under the theme 'Breakfast Recipes'. Check out the page to read what other marathoners are cooking.


Sunday, February 11, 2018

Green Apple Rice

When my husband brought dozens of apples along with a load of other fruits and asked whether I can use it in everyday cooking, this rice happened. I prepared it along the lines of a south Indian style green mango rice. It is simple and quick to prepare and quite yummy given that the apples chosen to prepare this are quite tart. One would not even notice that a fruit was used in the preparation.  If the apples are not that tart, you end up with a subtly sweet tasting rice which is not bad either in my opinion. If the apples are not tart enough, try compensating the flavor with the addition of lime / lemon juice.

3/4 cup rice (I used sona masuri rice.)
3 medium sized Granny Smith apples (It should amount to about 1.5 cups when grated.)
2 tbsp. oil
2 tbsp. peanuts
1 tsp. split chickpeas / chana dal
1 tsp. black gram / urad dal
1/2 tsp. mustard seeds
4 dried red chillies, broke into bits
Few curry leaves
1/8 tsp. turmeric powder
2 pinches of asafoetida powder
Salt to taste (about 1.5 tsp.)
1 tbsp. chopped cilantro
2 tsp. lime juice (Only if needed.)

* Rinse the rice in two exchanges of water and drain. Pressure cook the rice adding 1.5 cups water. Spread the rice on a wide plate and allow it cool. Once cool, break any rice lumps if present. 
* Peel, core and grate the apples. Leave the grated apple in a colander. 
* Heat oil in a saute pan and add peanuts, split chickpeas, black gram , mustard seeds and red chillies. When the peanuts turn golden brown, add curry leaves, turmeric powder and asafoetida powder. Saute for about 10 seconds and add the grated apple along with salt. Cook for a minute or until any water from the apple present disappears.
* Now add rice and cilantro. Mix well and turn off the stove. Taste and add lemon juice if rice is not sour enough.
* Serve warm with lentil wafers or potato chips.
This goes to Blogging marathon #85, under the theme 'Rice / Gravy Recipes'. Check out the page to read what other marathoners are cooking.


Saturday, February 10, 2018

Eggplant Rice

Here is a delicious rice choice for eggplant lovers. Crisply fried eggplants paired with spicy lentil powder yield a great flavor to this rice. The spice powder can be prepared ahead and can be stored in an air tight container for months. I prefer to fry the eggplants but calorie conscious folks can cook eggplants with little oil though crispy eggplants taste better.
Ingredients for spice powder:
1 tbsp. chanadal
1.5 tsp. uraddal
1.5 tsp. coriander seeds
2 tbsp. shredded dry coconut (copra)
5 spicy variety dries red chillies

Ingredients for part 2:
1 cup rice (I used sona masuri rice.)
3 big sized round egg plants (I had about 3 cups eggplant slices.)
Oil to fry the eggplant slices (I used canola oil.)

Ingredients for part 3:
4 tsp. oil
1 tbsp. cashew halves
1 tsp. split roasted chickpeas / chana dal
1 tsp. split black gram / urad dal
1/2 tsp. mustard seeds
10 - 12 curry leaves
1/8 tsp. turmeric powder
1.5 tsp. salt
Red chili powder (if needed) 

Part 1: Preparing spice powder
Toast chanadal and uraddal individually in a saute pan until they turn reddish brown. Saute the coriander seeds till they turn slightly brownish and add the red chillies at the end. Let them cool and grind all the ingredients finely.

Part 2:
* Rinse rice with water and drain. Pressure cook adding 2 cups of water and let it cool.
* Cut off the eggplant stalks and cut them lengthwise into two. Slice them thinly.
* Heat oil in a pan and fry the eggplant slices in batches on medium flame until crisp and golden brown. Drain them on absorbent paper towels.

Part 3:
* Heat oil in a kadai or a big non stick pot. Add the cashews and toast them till they turn golden brown. Remove them with a slotted spoon and keep aside. Add split roasted chickpeas, split black gram
and mustard seeds to the same oil and sauté until roasted chickpeas turns reddish. Then add curry leaves and turmeric powder.
* Add 3 tbsp. spice powder, salt and fried eggplants to the pan and mix properly so that the eggplant slices are well coated.
* Then add the cooked rice and mix well. Taste and adjust the seasonings if needed. Garnish with the toasted cashews.  

This post goes to Blogging marathon #85 under the theme "Rice /  Gravy recipes". Check out the page to read what other marathoners are cooking.


Monday, February 5, 2018

A Simple Strawberry Trifle

Here is a simple to put together but a delicious trifle under '3 ingredients based recipes'. I left out the pudding / custard part from the trifle to limit the ingredients' list. Also I used the chocolate cake crumbs to finish off a leftover birthday cake I had.
Though this trifle doesn't need any recipe, here is what I did. Arrange cake crumbs, hulled and halved strawberries and whipped cream in layers in a truffle bowl and serve immediately.
This post goes to Blogging marathon #85 under the theme "Recipes using three ingredients". Check out the page to read what other marathoners are cooking.


Sunday, February 4, 2018

Salted Peanuts (Microwave Version)

It is turn again for another recipe that needs only three ingredients. The ingredients which are commonly found in most of the kitchens. The recipe is for salted peanuts, a common snack sold on many Indian streets / beaches. I toasted them in microwave and they would be ready in about 5 minutes.
Ingredients: (Yield 2 -3 servings)
1.5 cups raw peanuts
Salt to taste (or about 1/4 tsp.)

* Rinse the peanuts with water in a colander and drain completely.
* Sprinkle salt over them and mix well to coat the peanuts.
* Spread the peanuts in a single layer on a microwave safe plate. I used a glass pie pan.
* Toast the peanuts until they turn crispy, turning them intermittently. It took me about five minutes to toast them crisp.
This post goes to Blogging marathon #85 under the theme "Recipes using three ingredients". Check out the page to read what other marathoners are cooking.


Saturday, February 3, 2018

Apple - Badam Mix Drink

I was on a blogging break, for those who have been wondering to which hole I disappeared into for the past few months. A break that spanned over two seasons without intentionally meaning to. A break when I didn't glance at my blog, touch my camera or peek into my email folder even once. 

Now getting back into business, here is a quick and flavorful drink using only three ingredients - apple, milk and badam mix powder. The latter one sold by the south Indian brand MTR is an instant mix of ground almonds, sugar, milk solids and cardamom. A small quantity of this instant mix is usually blended with milk and served either cold or hot. This almond milk aka 'baadami haalu' is a popular beverage sold in restaurants across Bangalore. 

For today's drink, I blended 1/2 peeled apple, 1 cup milk and 2 tbsp. almond instant mix powder. This can be served cold as a milkshake or the mixture can be boiled on low heat and served warm. It tastes delicious either way.

This post goes to Blogging marathon #85 under the theme "Recipes using three ingredients". Check out the page to read what other marathoners are cooking.