My Kachhi Dabeli. Make the Veggies go down faster

Posted by admin | Child friendly food,Recipes,Vegetarian | Thursday 7 July 2011 9:54 pm

Healthy Veggies in bread This is about as healthy as street food can get, and the added plus is that because it’s street food my little one loves it, and is willing to have it happily even at home. In fact last night I got the best complement ever! “This is better that what we get on the road.” Wow!
I won’t even get into the recipe for the “real thing”, my main intent making this at home is to get a larger than normal serving of vegetables into the meal. The real thing is spicier and has a more extreme sweet and sour taste.
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KACHHI DABELI HOME-STYLE make about 6 dabelis
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INGREDIENTS
2 large potatoes
1 small onion
1 large tomato
1 carrot
1 cup of cauliflower florets
1 tablespoon jaggery / 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup tamarind pulp
1/4 cup cilantro (coriander / kothmir) leaves cut fine
1 teaspoon ginger-garlic paste
1 teaspoon red chilli powder
Yellow fine sev (optional)
2 tablespoons butter
Salt to taste
Some pomegranate if you have it.
Oil
Indian Pav. Burger buns will do the job as well. (more…)

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3 minute-Cake-in-a-Mug!

Posted by admin | Child friendly food,Christmas,Desserts,Eggs | Tuesday 16 November 2010 12:24 am

Believe it or not!
3 minute cake in a mug
I haven’t been posting, but I’ve certainly been cooking. And baking. Donno why, somehow getting a dish done, photographed and onto the blog, often becomes a monumental task. I’ve got recipes typed out, but no matching photographs, or photographs for which I never did make an entry and then feel I might as well repeat it to make sure.

Well, to cut a long story short, I did try out this enchanting 3 minute-Cake-in-a-Mup. I’ll be honest, it’s not the best cake I’ve tasted, nor the best texture. It’s a little chewy. But there’s something absolutely enchanting in a simplicity, and the magic of watching it just rise in a minute, and grow and grow and grow like something out of an Enid Blyton book. And the wonder of having it done within minutes of thinking of it, and NOT having to clean up any mess. I’ve actually made it 3 times so far, the 3rd with my own variation. But I’ll come to that.
(more…)

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Absolutely Simple Chocolate Sponge Cake

Posted by admin | Child friendly food,Desserts,Eggs,Recipes | Sunday 5 September 2010 9:11 pm

the absolutely simple chocolate cakeThis is the very simplest chocolate cake possible. And I say that with real authority because the very first time I’ve baked a cake all on my own and it turned out fabulous! Looks, texture, aroma, taste. Really perfect. And it continues to turn out perfect – this is the third time I’m making it.
The second time I bravely made this for 20 people! Very brave or very stupid, depending how you look at it, I guess. Some said it could be sweeter, but well, I really don’t like my desserts oooozing sugar.

The recipe is a combination of one given to me by a friend, thanks Rashmi, and other stuff I’ve read off the wonderful internet. Her recipe was already marked over and all sorts of convenient substitutions had already been made. Then the second time I made this I read someplace that yogurt was a great substitute for all the excess fat that needs to go into a cake, so I tried that, and it worked beautifully with no negative effects on the cake that I could tell. There’s probably a million recipes out there, but the ease ans speed of this one, the sight of it emerging perfect from the oven, and the sight of my four year wolfing it down… Well, here goes.

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SIMPLE CHOCOLATE SPONGE CAKE Makes a 4 x 9inch cake about 2 inches high
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Ingredients
I used a coffee mug for all measures. Bigger than a normal cup measure. about 10oz compared to the normal 8oz cup.
Whatever you use, stick to the same throughout. This simple illustration says it all.
cake ingredients
1 measure all-purpose flour (maida)
1 measure = 2/3 mug castor or plain sugar + 1/3 mug drinking chocolate powder
1 measure = 1/3(100gm) salted butter + 1/3 cooking oil + 1/3 yogurt
[ I discovered here that any combination of the 3 will do it, including eliminating the oil all together so long as it makes a measure full. The 1st time I used all butter, but I’ve never yet used all yogurt ]
3 – 4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 teaspoon baking soda
Add salt only if your butter is unsalted.

ingredients-chocolate cake
PREPARATION
Turn on the oven to 260C.

If you like whizz the sugar through a blender. I did the first time, but not after and it didn’t make a difference.

Put all the measured ingredients into a large bowl and mix lightly till they’re all blended- 4-5 minutes max. I don’t own an electic hand beater but that should do it in 2 minutes.
Don’t go overboard with the mixing, I believe it takes the air out of it.

Line the baking dish with grease or brown paper.

Pour in the mixture.

Pop it in the middle rack of the oven, and turn the heat down to the lowest, -160C on my oven.

out of the ovenStart checking after 25-30 minutes. First just shake lightly. If it wobbles, don’t touch.
As it seems firmer, put in a knife. When it really comes out clean, you’re done.

Remove from the oven, and in 5 minutes, remove onto a rack to cool.

This last time I made the cake, I crushed some walnuts and added them into the mixture.
The time before, I “iced” the cake all over with Hershey’s Chocolate Sauce and put the walnuts on the top. My expertise doesn’t yet stretch me to making an icing!

Whatever! it’s been yummm every time.
into the fridge...

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Rainbow Rice

Posted by admin | Child friendly food,Recipes,Vegetarian | Monday 30 August 2010 8:29 am

As I’ve mentioned before before, feeding a 4 year old child is a real challenge, and expanding her tiny list for favourites is near impossible. But last week I had a eureka! moment. Brought on by a story I was telling her, and some old childhood memories of my own.

One of my mom’s favorites for her party menus used to be what she’d named Rainbow Rice. I remember her with a assortment of mixing bowls, food colors and ingredients. Mixing, stressing, molding… it was a long involved process, and its success or otherwise could only be judged just before dinner, when shooing other ‘helpful’ guests out of the kitchen, she held her breath and slowly un-molded the casserole onto the serving dish.
Rainbow Rice
My dish was a shameless short-cut. For one I will never be a gourmet chef who enjoys slaving, playing, concocting in the kitchen. For another, this was totally impromptu, I really had very few ingredients to play around with. And thirdly, with my daughter, there’s no guarantee that anything’s going to work, so I refused to build myself up for disappointment. Especially since, her favorite food is PLAIN white rice; no gravy, no curries, NO mixing! I was on dangerous ground with the experiment already!

As it happened, my shortcut rainbow rice was a success, in terms of how it looked and thanks to the build-up I gave it, the enthusiasm with with it was consumed. The flavors this time were simple, minimum spice, but I’m going to dig out mom’s old recipe sometime soon, but for now, here goes…

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RAINBOW RICE Serves 4
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INGREDIENTS
1 1/2 cups rice cooked about 5 minutes short of perfect
I’ve found a pretty foolproof way to measure out rice to be used. I just use my open hand-full, one per person and then 1 extra. No, I don’t have a very big hand, and its always worked perfectly for me. If you use Basmati which doesn’t fluff too much, you can probably get a little safer by adding 2 hand-fulls over the head count.
2 tablespoons boiled beetroot, grated
10 stalks spinach
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 chicken stock cube (but you can do without this entirely)
1/2 lime squeezed
salt to taste
1 teaspoon butter
(more…)

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