Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Cold Cocoa

Yesterday I promised him કેરીનો રસ for dinner but I forgot to take it out from freezer. His mind was all made up to have it in dinner and then I had to do something to compensate my mistake. So I made this cold cocoa for dessert, perfect for out of the blue warm day in fall.

Serves 2
Preparation Time: 5 Minute
Cooking Time: NIL

2-cup whole milk
1 tsp cocoa powder
2 tsp chocolate syrup
½ tsp sugar
¼ tsp coffee
1 tbsp shredded chocolate

1. Whisk all ingredients together with ice except coffee and chocolate
2. Garnish with coffee powder and chocolate (I used almond based dark chocolate, any chocolate where cocoa quantity is more that 70% will do)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Stonewell Kitchen

The other day we went to National Harbor. I fell in love with this place not only because of Harbor beauty but also because of small designer shops across the street. One among them was Stonewell Kitchen. I had always heard about Gourmet Kitchen Ingredients, but never happened to see where they are actually sold. Watching food network always makes me curious, what kinds of spices are being used by big chefs? I had also read about Ina Garten, that before becoming full-time chef, she and her husband owned a gourmet kitchen shop in NY for about 18 years. We spent about 15 Minute inside the shop and I was completely mesmerized by its arrangement, it was no less elegant and stylish than any designer boutique!!

They had different sections for different kinds of jams, sauces, dips, salsa, dressings and finally, some utensils. The beauty is that you can almost taste everything. They offer you to taste all the varieties with cheese crackers. I did not buy anything this time, but next time I’m gonna buy some salsa and dip mix for sure. Now I know what to buy :)

Corn-Pasta Salad

I had this salad first time at some pot luck party. It was served cold and it turned out to be the most favorite dish at the party. The original recipe had sweet onion vinaigrette with hint of parmesan cheese. I tried to make healthier version by inter-changing corn and pasta quantity and replacing vinaigrette by simple olive oil and other routine spices. And the verdict? A big hit at dinner party I arranged last weekend. The advantage of replacing vinaigrette with simple Indian spices is that it can equally work with Indian menu too.

Serves 4
Preparation Time: 15 Minute
Cooking Time: NIL + refrigeration time

1 cup small size pasta (I used small shell)
1 cup whole corn kernels
½ cup chopped green pepper
½ cup chopped red pepper
2 tbsp chopped scallions
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp lemon juice
3 tbsp parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper

1. Boil pasta as per instructions, keep it aside
2. Boil/steam corn kernels, mix with pasta
3. In a bowl, thoroughly whisk olive oil, salt, pepper and lemon juice
4. Add corn-pasta mixture and chopped veggies to this bowl
5. Mix them and garnish with cheese
6. Serve cold

This can work as a perfect appetizer when served with tortilla scoops.

Mixed Dal Khichdi

I am back…after a long time. When I started this blog, I meant to write only special recipes. So I had never thought that I would end up writing this one. But here I am and I am sure it’s worth putting here :)
We both love khichdi and I always try to bring some variations to this simple recipe. I have tried different veggies and dry fruits, but never played with basic ingredients – Dal and Rice. This little twist turned out simply delicious that why it's here :D

Serves 2-4
Preparation Time: 10 Minute
Cooking Time: 20 Minute

1 cup rice
1/3 cup moong dal (I used combination of yellow moong dal and green split dal)
1/3 cup toor dal
1/3 cup chana dal
1 cup potato cut in small pieces
1 cup onions, sliced
½ cup green peas
½ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp red chili powder

For Tempering,
1 tsp oil
2 pc cloves
¼ inch cinnamon stick
10-12 pc curry leaves
1 tsp mustard seeds
Pinch of asafetida

1. Dry roast all dals for about 5-7 minute
2. Mix dal and rice and soak them for about 2 hours
3. Heat oil in skillet, add clove, cinnamon, mustard seeds, hing and curry leaves
4. Add onions, stir continuously till they are translucent
5. Add potatoes and peas, stir for another 3-4 minute
6. Add veggies mixture to soaked dal-rice
7. Add 5 cup water and cook khichdi (I pressure cooked it, but if you cook outside it tastes far better)