Saturday, June 30, 2012

Announcing Serve It Series - Serve It - Blended

This month's theme for Serve It series is Serve It - Blended. This is the second event in the Serve It series based on a small kitchen appliance, after Pressure Cooked/Slow Cooked. Blender/Mixer grinder is a great addition to any kitchen and it makes our life so much easier. 
In olden days before the invention of these electrical appliances there used to be grinding stones in every home, Ammikal and Aatukal. It is believed to impart a natural flavor to the dishes compared to the modern gadgets. I can't deny it. We still have ammikal and aatukal in our home back in India. Though we do not use the Aatukal, the big grinding stone, we use the ammikal from time to time for grinding chutneys and spice mixes for curries.
This month's Serve It event is based on these gadgets. So whip up (I mean literally) your blended entries and send it over.

Here are the guidelines for the event:
1. You may send in any entry that is blended/crushed using a blender, food processor or a mortar and pestle. 
2. Chutneys, Spice powders, Pestos, Milkshakes, smoothies, icecreams literally any dish made with a blender is allowed. Basically the blended dish should be served as it is. However Tadka/seasoning is allowed.
3. Entries which are not qualified are dishes which use the blended ingredients to make something, like curry, idli, dosas etc.,. I think you got the idea.
4. The ingredients can be greens, vegetables, fruits, grains, dairy etc.,.
5. Please link back to this announcement page and also to Denny's page here.
6. New entries are appreciated, however if you are sending archived entries, please re-post as latest (with a date in July 2012) and update with both the links to the announcement page and logo.
7. Usage of links and logo is mandatory.
8. Last date for submission of your entries is July 31, 2012.
9. To submit your entries, just link your entries using the linky tool below. 
10. Non-bloggers also can send their entries with a picture to the below email-id.
11. If you have a problem in linking email us your problem to serveit[dot]series[at]gmail[dot]com. We will try to resolve it.
Note: If the entries are inappropriate to the theme, we would have to remove the entries from the linky sans notification. If there are other issues like link or logo missing we would definitely notify through email.
Linky for Blended entries:

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Spaghetti with Mushrooms and Onions / Pasta in Mushroom sauce

It has been a while since I posted any pasta recipes. Not that I am not cooking pasta anymore, just that I didn't get a chance to click. I make pasta at least once every two weeks and DH loves the regular way I make it - pasta, veggies and pasta sauce. This time I made this mushroom pasta with onions and chicken stock. Garnished with some fresh herbs this dish is very flavorful and appetizing.
Serves - 2
Preparation time - 10 mins; Cooking time - 30 mins
Whole grain Spaghetti - 1/4th of a box
White Mushrooms (or any variety) - 8 oz approx 250 g - sliced
Onion - thinly sliced - 1/2 cup
Low sodium Vegetable broth / Chicken Stock - 1 cup
Coriander leaves - a few twigs (You can substitute Parsley, Mint, Basil or any fresh herb of your choice)
Olive oil - 1 tbsp + 1 tsp
Butter - 1 tsp
Italian seasoning - 1/2 tsp
Salt and Pepper to taste
Boil water in a wide pot with a tsp of salt. In a wide skillet add butter and 1 tsp of oil and layer the sliced mushrooms in a single layer. Allow it to brown for a couple of minutes and flip over to brown the other side. You can do this in batches if desired. When done remove the mushrooms to a plate. Add the remaining oil and saute the onions in high heat until they turn light brown. Sprinkle little salt and pepper and add the italian seasoning. Add the stock and allow it to reduce to half. Meanwhile drop the pasta in boiling water and cook for the time specified in the box. When it is cooked drain and transfer to the onion skillet with mushrooms and toss well. Check for seasoning and remove from heat. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and serve hot.
Note: You could use any variety of pasta. Adding red pepper flakes for heat would give a different level of heat and taste.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A Blog Break with some Scheduled Posts!

Hello Readers,

I am taking a break from blogging for a short while. However I have scheduled some posts for the next couple of weeks. Will be back soon!!


Saturday, June 16, 2012

Paal Vaazhakka ~ Banana in Coconut milk ~ Dessert from Kerala ! - Guest post by Dhyuthi of Mélange

The guest for this month's guest post is from Dhyuthi of Mélange. As the name says, her space is a mixture of different ingredients. One could find authentic Kerala recipes, All time favorite Indian curries to delicious Brioche buns. My favorite recipes from her site are Chemmeen Thoran and Koottu Curry. When I asked her to do a guest post for Krithi's Kitchen she was all excited and asked me what I would want her to make. My immediate reply was to have a native recipe from Kerala, her specialty and my favorite. Go ahead and check out what she made specially for me..
Before I go on thanking Krithi here,I may acknowledge this is an overdue. Krithi is a good old food blogger,a nice girl and friend who is there from the initial days of Melange.I would love to hug,a gesture of gratitude and friendship before going on to the recipe.
Krithi was particular about me doing something special from Kerala. That's completely logical. Isn't it? Melange being Keralite. But then I thought I will post something really really special here.A re-creation or re-invention from the past. A childhood favorite of mine,yet forgotten.
I was quite confused and anxious while waiting for my dessert Che Chuoi at a Vietnamese Restaurant. In a way more than expectation. Like many other Vietnam desserts, coconut milk was the main ingredient cooked along with banana and tapioca pearls. That was the description they had with it. Oh no,it struck me that I have tasted something like that somewhere in the past. I was trying to recollect where and when. Nothing occurred to me till delicious Che Chuoi made it's appearance. Relishing the first spoonful it was almost instinctive for me to go back. To the fever bed. The smell of fever. This was a special mild sweet prepared during my fever-struck days during childhood. Since I skip my steamed bananas (Nethrappazham as we call in Kerala) often,they were done with a complete make over in this dessert. Infused in coconut milk and cardamom,bananas virtually rock in this dessert. To convert it more healthy,I may suggest to add honey instead of sugar. On to the recipe now.
2 medium sized bananas,cut into medium pieces. (Nenthrappazham is better since it offers you kind of sourness too)
2 cups of thin coconut milk
1 cup thick coconut milk
handful of sago/chavvari
1/4 tsp cardamom powder
sugar,as required
pinch of salt
few cashews & raisins to garnish (optional)
Boil thin coconut milk in a sauce pan.Stir in between.When it start boiling add sago and cook in low heat.After 5 minutes add the chopped banana and cook again till sago gets cooked completely and bananas done three fourth.Sprinkle cardamom powder.Pour thick coconut milk and cook in medium heat adding sugar and salt.When it start boiling switch off .You may garnish with cashews and raisins as well.(In Che Chuoi apparent difference is sesame.They garnish it with white sesame which gives it a unique flavour)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Bisi Bele Bhath with Quinoa / Quinoa Lentil Vegetables Stew | Indian Quinoa Recipes

Here I am again talking about Quinoa - the super grain. Quinoa has become an important part of my kitchen and I love cooking with the guilt free ingredient. I have made it a habit to use this in my cooking atleast twice a week. If it is not in a dish which substitutes rice like Bisi Bele Bath or Pumpkin Pulao, it finds its place in my Veg Clear soup, Adai or Pancakes. I was quite skeptical when I substituted this for rice in DH's favorite Bisi Bele Bath. Bisi Bele Bath (kannada) translates as Hot Lentil dish. There are certain recipes which he wouldn't allow me to tweak and this was on of them. When I first made this dish with quinoa, it took some time for him to notice the change. When he finished he was a happy man and he didn't miss the rice in this one.
Quinoa - 3/4 cup
Toor Dhal - 3/4 cup
Tomato - 1 - chopped finely
Mixed vegetables - 3 cups - I used a mix of carrots, beans, cauliflower, peas and whole shallots
Bisi Bele Bath Masala Powder - 2 tbsp or to taste
Tamarind extract - 1/4 cup - juice from big gooseberry sized tamarind
Salt - to taste
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Ghee - 2 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves - a few
Cashew nuts - 5 (optional)
Wash and soak the quinoa and toor dhal together for 15 mins. Drain and pressure cook with tomato, turmeric powder and salt for 3 whistles. When pressure is released mash with the back of a ladle and add the vegetables. Cook for another whistle and allow the pressure to release. Add the bisi bele bath masala powder, tamarind extract and cook in low flame for 10 minutes until the flavours meld. In a small kadai, heat ghee and splutter the mustard seeds. Add curry leaves and cashew nuts and saute until light brown. Pour the tempering over the quinoa-dhal mixture. Serve hot as the name says with any side dish of your preference. I served with Cucumber Raita.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Cucumber Raitha / Vellarikai Thayir Pachadi / Cucumber Yogurt Dip

Raitha is a most commonly served condiment with spicy Indian food. All yogurt lovers love raita. It is a palate cleanser and aids in digestion. There are practically number of types of raita one could prepare, the most common being carrot raita, cucumber raita, onion raita and tomato raita. Raita is the best accompaniment for briyani and kebabs. This is not much of a recipe but there are certain tips to serve perfect raitha. I made a simple Cucumber Raitha to go with my Bisi Bele Bath (recipe coming soon). 
Serves - 3-4
Curd / Thick Greek Yogurt (plain) - 1 cup
Grated Cucumber - 1 cup
Salt / Chaat Masala* - to taste
Beat the yogurt with a spoon until it is creamy and smooth. Add the grated cucumber and mix well. Store in the fridge until the time of serving. When ready to serve mix in salt or chaat masala to taste and serve.
1. If using Chaat masala skip salt since it already has salt in it.
2. Chaat masala has a tang to it, so you can skip and add just salt if interested.
3. For any kind of raitas, it is important that salt is added just before serving, since it reacts with yogurt and dilutes it.
*Chaat masala can be found in Indian Grocery Stores.
I am linking this to the Serve It - Raw event happening at my space and Denny's.

I am also linking this to Srav's CC-Splash into Summer; Summer Cooler; Fun in the Sun; Jump & Jive @ IcyPritz.