Thursday, March 31, 2011

Guest Hosting - Breakfast Club #10 - The Theme is..

Breakfast Club is a wonderful event started by Helen of Fuss Free Flavours, which I am guest hosting for this month. I would like to thank Helen for giving me an opportunity to host this event and I am overjoyed. 

Breakfast Club: Because breakfast should be more interesting

than tea & toast or coffee & cereal.

I had always been a breakfast person and never skip it. It is the most important meal of your day and keep you going with concentration and energy for your day. The Theme for this month is "Pancakes".
So friends, don your chef caps and aprons and come up with innovative and interesting ideas of Pancakes/Crepes for Breakfast. It can be pancakes from scratch, or can use store-bought mixes which you are using to whip up creative and tasty pancakes which your family loves.
1. Prepare pancakes/crepes from scratch with or without eggs using any flour
2. If using store-bought pancake mixes be as creative as possible, adding fruits, veggies or making it savory... No Beef/Pork/Alcohol please.
3. Email me at krithiskitchen[at]gmail[dot]com with the following details
Your Name; Blog Name; Recipe Name; Recipe URL; Picture resized to 300 px please
4. Link back to this post and Helen's original event announcement page.
5. Use of logo is mandatory as it helps spread the word
6. Any number of new entries are allowed
7. Archived entries are accepted if re-published as latest with this announcement, Helen's announcement and logo.
8. The end date is midnight of April 30th, 2011.
I am looking forward for your beautiful entries for breakfast!
P.S. If you are interested in hosting Breakfast Club for the upcoming months, email Helen at helen[at]fussfreeflavours[dot]com.

Awards Time... again!!

More Awards... Yay!! 
Ammu Mohan from Rasi's Veg bites awarded me with Cute Little Chef Award.. Wow.. I am so happy and excited.
Valar of Valar's Kitchen passed me this award.

I was also given the One Lovely Blog Award from Mythreyi from Yum! Yum! Yum!, Reshmi of Easy Cook, Deepa Praveen from of Sketches, South Indian Home, RS of Relishing Food

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Fenugreek Coriander Thokku

Fenugreek Coriander Thokku/Chutney is a rare and lovely combination of two of my favorite greens. This is again one of my grandma's recipes, and can't go wrong anytime. It is a great item to prepare when we have time and preserve for future use. It tastes great with hot steamed rice or a great side dish for chapathi or a tangy-savory spread for breads. Definitely won't let you down when you are racing against time.

Fresh fenugreek leaves - 3 cups - packed tightly
Cilantro - 1 cup - packed tightly
Tamarind - size of a blueberry/gooseberry
Salt - to taste
Gingelly Oil/Sesame oil - 3 tbsp or more if preserving
Pearl onions - 5 chopped fine
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Asafoetida - 1/4 tsp
Chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
Steam the cleaned fenugreek leaves and coriander leaves with tamarind in a stove top with enough water. Alternatively you can microwave the greens for 2 mins with 2 tbps of water and tamarind. Allow it to cool and pulse for 10 - 20 secs in a blender to a coarse paste without adding any water. Note that blending too much would make it gooey. Heat gingelly oil in a skillet and add the turmeric powder, asafoetida and chopped onions. Saute until the onions are transparent. Now add the ground greens paste and salt and give a quick mix. Allow to cook in medium flame until it starts leaving the sides of the pan and oil starts oozing out. Turn off the heat and add the chilli powder, mix well. Serve hot with steamed rice or store in a clean container. You may top with more gingelly oil and pop it in refrigerator for a longer life. 

I am sending this thokku to Pickle Mela at Hima's Snackorama and also to Herbs & Flowers in my Platter - Cilantro, event by PJ, happening in my blog.

Also sending this to Srivalli's Condiment Mela.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Strawberry Apple Smoothie

Strawberry and banana is my favorite combination for a smoothie. I tried replacing apple for banana the other day and still loved it. This is not a rare combo. It is perfect for a healthy breakfast or for hunger pangs at 4 PM, which keeps you satisfied and going until dinner. 

Strawberries - 5 or 6, hulled 
Apple - 1/2 of a medium sized, peeled and chopped
Milk - 2/3 cup 
Plain yogurt - 1/3 cup (I use homemade)
Sugar/Honey - 1 tsp
Lemon juice - 1 tsp

Blend all the ingredients in a blender until smooth. Can top with ice cubes if desired. Serve chilled.
I am sending this simple and delicious smoothie to Monthly Mingle: Think Pink event by Meeta, guest hosted by Sarah of Maison Cupcake.


Saturday, March 26, 2011

Honey Brownies - Celebrating a few hundreds

I am happy to share with you that today is my 100th day of blogging. My blog is also being followed by 100+ friends in Google connect and also in Networked Blogs. I would like to thank all my fellow bloggers and friends who made this happen by their constant support and encouragement. I feel really delighted for every comment left in my posts. I wanted a reason to celebrate this and so I made brownies.
Anybody who loves chocolate definitely cant say no to brownies. I am a big fan of brownies, but I mostly find the restaurant brownies bit too sweet for my palate. When I planned to bake brownies, I wanted to keep it as a simple and basic brownie but also low in sweet and so opted to use honey instead of sugar. Honey is a natural sweetener and is rich in antioxidants, minerals and vitamins which is not present in refined white sugar. Also the addition of honey gave a special moist and soft texture to the brownies.

All-purpose flour/Maida - 1/2 cup
Unsweetened Cocoa powder - 1/3 cup
Baking powder - 1/4 tsp
Salt - 1/4 tsp
Semi-sweet chocolate chips / Chopped Walnuts - 1/2 cup (optional)
Vegetable oil - 1/2 cup (Can substitute with 1/2 cup - 1 stick of butter if using)
Honey - 3/4 cup (Can substitute sugar) See notes below for sweet preference*
Maple Syrup - 1/4 cup
Vanilla - 1 tsp
Egg - 1 (I had one lone egg so just used it, Can use one more if desired)

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a 9" square pan with parchment paper with an inch overhang on two opposite sides. This enables easy removal of the brownies from the pan. In a large mixing bowl mix flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt with a whisk for a minute. Fold in the chocolate chips/walnuts if using. In another bowl mix the oil, honey, maple syrup with a hand mixer until well mixed. Add in the vanilla and the egg and beat for another 30 secs. Now pour the wet mixture over the dry ingredients and gently wrap and fold until well mixed without any lumps. Do not overmix. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 20-25 mins. A toothpick inserted into center of the oven should come out clean. Remove from the oven and cool for 10 mins. Transfer the brownies from the pan to the cooling rack and allow it to cool for 30 mins. Cut into 9 big squares or 16 small squares. Serve with a glass of milk.
1. All the ingredients are measured using the baking measurement cups and spoons.
2. The eggs should be in room temperature.
3. If using regular sugar/butter instead of honey/oil, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth.
4. According to the review from my readers, I would suggest skipping maple syrup and use just 1/2 cup of honey for not-very-sweet brownies.
Sending these Honey brownies to the Best Brownies event by Divya and Fast Food not Fat Food event by Priya.
Also linking this to This Week's Cravings by Mom's Crazy Cooking and Hearth and Soul Hop.
Hearth and Soul Hop at Sunshine and Smile

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Mooli Paratha / Radish flat bread | Roti Paratha Recipes

Mooli Paratha is much loved paratha at home next to Aloo Paratha. Adding radish also makes the parathas super-soft and tasty.

Whole wheat flour / Atta flour - 3 cups
Grated Radish - 1 cup
Grated ginger - 1/2 tsp
Green chilli - 2 - chopped fine
Salt - to taste
Oil - 1 tbsp

Mix the grated ginger and green chillies to the grated radish with a pinch of salt and set aside for 10 mins. Mix flour and salt. Add the oil and mix until well incorporated and add the radish mixture with the water. Knead to a dough sprinkling water. Set aside for 15-30 mins. Heat a griddle/tawa. Pinch golf ball sized dough and roll it out into thin parathas dusting flour. Place the rolled out parathas on the hot griddle and cook on both sides, spraying oil. Serve hot with any curry of your choice.

Sending this to Veggie/Fruit a Month - Radish event by Priya guest hosted by Vanessa of Sweet Artichoke and also to CWS-Wheat event by Suma.


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Tomato Chopps / Tomato Curry | Indian Curry Recipes

Tomato chops is a easy and delicious curry with a tangy-sweetness from tomatoes and a mild heat from the masala. It is perfect for rice and roti alike and also a creamy spread for breads. It was the one traditional curry made in my home and when we were kids we used to call this as chapeese (kiddie language transformation). This is a simple preparation which gets ready in under 30 mins.

Tomato - 4 - cut into big pieces
Onion - 1/2 cup chopped
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Salt - to taste
Oil - 1 tbsp
Cilantro - to garnish
Make a paste:
Coriander seeds - 2 1/2 tsp
Cumin seeds - 3/4 tsp
Garlic - 2 cloves
Red chilli - 3
Grated Coconut - 1 tbsp
Cloves - 3
Cinnamon - a small piece

Make a fine paste of the ingredients under 'Make a paste' adding water. Heat oil in a skillet and add  the mustard seeds. When the mustard seeds splutter add the chopped onions and fry until translucent, about 3-5 mins. Now add the tomatoes and fry until mushy. Add salt, turmeric powder and the ground paste and saute for 2 mins. Add 2-3 cups of water, mix well and allow it to boil in medium heat until the raw smell disappears and a nice aroma emanates, about 10-15 mins. Remove from heat, garnish with cilantro. Serve hot with rice or roti.
Sending this to CWF-WV-Tomato event by Kiran, guest hosted by Sanyukta and also to C for Curries event by Charitha.


Monday, March 21, 2011

Tawa Pulao with Paneer | Indian Rice Recipes

Tawa Pulao is a classic Mumbai Street food. It is a quick food like chaats, cooked with veggies, rice and Indian spices. This was one dish which can be fixed within 30 mins, apt for my busy weekend cooking. i.e. The weekend where we have many programs. I had seen the tawa pulao in many of my blogger friends' site and wanted to try it. I googled and arrived at Sanjeev Kapoor's recipe for a simple and easy tawa pulao. 

Raw Rice - 2 cups (Preferably Basmati or Sona Masoori)
Onion - 1/2 cup chopped fine
Tomato - 2 chopped fine
Mixed Vegetables - 1/2 cup of each (julienned carrot, red bell peppers, green bell peppers) - You may use whatever is available at hand
Paneer - cubed or julienned - 1/2 cup 
Ginger paste - 1 tsp
Pav Bhaji Masala - 2 1/2 tsp (Available in Indian Grocery Stores)
Red Chilli paste - 1 tbsp (I used Tomato Chilli Sauce)
Salt - to taste
Oil - 1 tbsp
Cilantro - To garnish
Lemon juice - 1 tsp

Cook the rice with a drizzle of oil and 1/2 tsp of salt adding 4 cups of water using pressure cooker or simple stove-top. When done, fluff with a fork and allow it to cool spreading on a wide pan/cookie sheet. In a wide skillet, add oil. When it is heated add the finely chopped onions followed by ginger paste. When the raw smell of ginger disappears add the chopped tomatoes. When the tomatoes becomes mushy, add the pav bhaji masala and red chilli paste. Mix well and add the vegetables and toss in high heat for a minute or two. Add salt and paneer now and give a quick mix. Reduce the heat to low and add the cooled cooked rice. Mix carefully such that the masala is well coated in the rice. Garnish with lemon juice and chopped cilantro/coriander leaves. Serve hot with any raitha of your choice.
Note: I sauted paneer in a tsp of oil before adding in here, though this step is optional. I microwaved carrots for 30 secs before adding here.

Sending this to Flavors of Maharastra event by Nayna guest hosted by PJ this month. Also to Bookmarked Recipes - Every Tuesday event by Aipi and Priya and Anyone Can Cook event by Ayisha.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Coriander Paneer Rice | Indian Rice Recipes

This is my first entry to the Herbs and Flowers in my Platter event by PJ which I am guest hosting this month. Cilantro is my favorite herb, next to Mint. It is one super-herb rich in anti-oxidants and is anti-bacterial. Though often used in garnish, it is also used in many south-indian dishes. I prepared a simple one-pot meal with cilantro and paneer, perfect as a lunch box recipe.

Raw rice - 2 cups
Onion - 1 cup - sliced thin
Paneer - cubed into small pieces - 1/2 cup
Cloves - 3
Cinnamon - a small piece
Bay leaf - 1
Salt to taste
Ghee/oil - 1 tbsp
Make a paste:
Coriander leaves - 3/4 cup - tightly packed
Mint leaves - 1/3 cup - tightly packed
Green chilli - 3
Ginger - about 1/2 tbsp
Garlic - 3 cloves

Wash and soak the rice in water for 15 mins. Make a paste of the ingredients adding a little water. Heat ghee/oil in a pressure cooker or a big pan and fry the cloves, cinnamon and bay leaf. Add the sliced onions and saute until they turn golden brown. Add in the cubed paneer and give a quick mix followed with the ground paste. Salt as needed and add 3 3/4 cups of water and add the drained rice. Cover and cook until done. Serve hot with raita or pappad.

Sending this to Herbs and Flowers in my Platter - Coriander/Cilantro event by PJ guest hosted by me this month.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Pasta with Spinach Basil Pesto

There is only one food that DH cherishes next to traditional South Indian food. Pasta. I didn't know how he got a liking for pasta and I guess it is because of the cheese. He loves cheese. Noodles & Company is one of our favorite hangouts for a quick and casual dinner. Whenever we go there he always orders Penne Rosa. I do not know how he orders the same dish every single time. I usually order any of their Mediterranean or Asian varieties. My favorites are Pesto Cavatappi and Japanese Pan Fried Noodles. I tried reproducing the Pesto Cavatappi at home and was successful. It is a simple pasta with pesto combo. 

Pasta - 2 cups (I used Elbows, you may use any kind)
Basil - 1 cup (tightly packed)
Spinach - 1/2 cup (tightly packed) - optional
Garlic cloves - 3 or 4
Walnuts - 1/4 cup toasted (can use pine nuts as well)
Grated Parmesan cheese - 1/4 cup - optional
Olive oil - 1/4 cup
Salt and fresh ground pepper - to taste

Cook the pasta "al dente" in salted rapidly boiling water, per instructions in the package. While it is cooking, make a paste with the rest of the ingredients in a blender/food processor. If using walnuts add it first to the blender and pulse it few times before adding the remaining ingredients. When the pasta is done, drain it and return it to a wide mixing bowl. When it is still hot add the pesto, per needed and mix well. Serve hot, topped with cheese if desired. This one is very easy and always a quick companion for busy weeknights. I stored the left over pesto in a dry container in the refrigerator. Topped with enough olive oil to cover, it stays good for a few weeks.

Happy St.Patrick's Day everyone!
I am sending this to Presto Pasta Nights # 205 event by Ruth, guest hosted by Debbie.
Also Sending this to Herbs & Flowers - Basil event by PJ.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Guest hosting "Herbs and Flowers in my Platter" - Coriander leaves/Cilantro

This is my first time hosting an event and I would like to thank PJ of Seduce Your Tastebuds to let me guest host her event. PJ has a wide variety of healthy recipes collection and almost everything from each category. Be it cereals/vegetables/fruits, she would definitely have cooked a dish from each of the items.
The chosen herb for this month is Coriander Leaves/Cilantro. This is a common herb used in South-Asian, Latin-American and Mediterranean cuisine alike. These are known by the common names like Coriander leaves, Cilantro or Chinese Parsley. 
So dear friends are you ready to cook with Coriander/Cilantro and send me your culinary creations...

Here are the guidelines.
  1. Cook and blog about any dish which features 'Coriander Leaves/Cilantro'. No Beef/Pork/Alcohol please.
  2. The selected herb has to be the star or one of the key ingredients in the dish.
  3. Though this series is based on the culinary uses, you can also write about some interesting facts on cilantro and other medicinal/cosmetic uses.
  4. Please add this announcement link, original announcement page by PJ, logo to your post. It helps spread the word.
  5. Send in as many entries as you could. Archived entries are also accepted but please re-post with this event announcement and logo.
  6. The last date for the entries is April 15th 2011.
  7. Send me the following details with email subject as "Herbs & Flowers - Coriander" to krithiskitchen[at]gmail[dot]com.
    1. Your name and 
    2. Blog Name
    3. Recipe and URL
    4. Picture of your dish, resized to not more than 400 px, please
  8. Non bloggers are also welcome to participate, Send me your recipe to the above email id.
I believe all you fellow bloggers would give me support and encouragement by sending your lovely entries and make it a success. Looking forward for your wonderful entries...