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Friday, 25 July 2014

Amma's Recipe #15

I honestly tell you I don't like liver. But I didn't want to miss out this recipe of mu mum's since I know many of you likes liver. I like the dry masala though but not the liver. Its spicy and peppery in flavour. A classic Tamil Nadu style preparation. Enjoy with hot steamed rice. 

You Will Need:

250g Liver, Cut into small pieces

1 large Shallots, Finely Chopped
1/2 tsp Ginger Garlic Paste
1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
1 tsp pepper Powder
1 tsp Cumin Powder
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
Few Curry Leaves
Salt to taste
5 tbsp Gingelly Oil

The Cooking:

Heat oil in a kadai on high and crackle fennel seeds. Then add the chopped shallots and cook till they are golden brown. Now add the ginger garlic paste and cook for a min till the raw flavours of the ginger garlic paste goes off. Then tumble in the liver and sprinkle required salt and little water. 

Liver cooks fast, gently mix them and cook covered for 8 - 10 mins. Once the liver is cooked sprinkle pepper powder, cumin powder and curry leaves. Simmer for another min or so till the gravy is dry and oil separates from the sides. 

Note: When adding curry leaves to any dishes, just tear them. This helps in bringing out the flavours more. 

Happy Cooking!


Thursday, 24 July 2014

BAINGAN BHARTA or BAINGAN KA BHARTA is a popular dish in South Asia countries like India, Pakistan & Bangladesh. Its a very simple vegetarian curry make with mashed eggplants that are charred over charcoal or on direct heat giving this dish its unique smokey flavour. In India Baingan Bharta is very famous in the regions of Maharashtra, Punjab, Bihar, Orissa and West Bengal.

A very simple and hassle free curry I would say. No intensive chopping and the curry takes just mins to come together.

Below is a stock image of the particular variety of baingan or eggplant that is used in this curry. Trust me you don't want to try this with other varieties other than this one. Actually you got to read this interesting article on eggplants, The Many Mysteries Of Eggplant by journalist, TV personality and Cookbook author David Rosengarten. 
Stock Image

Serves 4

You Will Need:
1 Large Eggplant
1 Finely Chopped Green Chilli
2 Large Onions, finely chopped
1 Large Tomato, Finely Chopped
2 tbsp Grated Garlic
1 tsp Red Chilli Powder
1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
1 tsp Cumin Powder
1 tsp Coriander Powder
1/2 tsp Garam Masala
1/4 Cup Water
1/2 tbsp Lemon Juice
2 tbsp of Finely Chopped Coriander
4 tbsp Vegetable Oil
Salt to Taste
Little Finely Chopped Coriander for Garnish

The Cooking:

Step 1:
Make three scores on the eggplant lengthwise and poke it a couple of time. Place them directly on the gas burner and evenly char them on high heat. Alternatively you can rub some oil and pop it in the microwave for a min or so till the skin gets shrunk. Once the skin is charred and the eggplant becomes softer remove from heat and place it in a bowl and cover with a lid or cling wrap. This makes the peeling work easy.

Note: Scoring the eggplant makes peeling off the skin easier. Use only this variety of eggplant. I have used the small ones and it WILL NEVER work. Charring is must, its gives that unique Smokey flavour to the curry.

Step 2:
Heat oil in a kadai and add the chopped green chilli, garlic and onion. Saute till the onions are soft and turn a deep golden brown. 

Step 3:
Add in the chopped tomatoes and stir. Now add the turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, garam masala, red chilli powder and salt. Mix everything together and sauté for couple of mins on high heat stirring constantly to avoid sticking to the bottom. 

Step 4:
Take the charred eggplant and remove the charred skin and mash it up. Don't worry if you have bits of charred skin on the mashed eggplant. Now add this mashed smokey eggplant and chopped coriander to the curry and mix well. 

Step 5:
Add the water and cook on low heat with a lid on till oil separates from the curry. 

Finally garnish it with chopped coriander and serve hot with roti!

Happy Cooking!


This is NOT KFC and its not Southern Fried Chicken, Its BUTTERMILK FRIED CHICKEN WINGS! What's the difference??? Both KFC and Southern Fried Chicken DOES NOT use buttermilk and they both use Hot Sauce. I have tried making KFC at home a lot of times before but I always seemed to get the texture wrong. And when I tried this Buttermilk fried chicken, I loved its flavour more than the KFC. And I found the trick to get that flaky, crisp crust. 

The ziplock method easier and less messy. Nigella does that all the time, doesn't she? And it also helps in forming the crust. When I coat the chicken with my hands in the flour, it almost shapes the crust. Somehow! But when I tossed it in the ziplock, I got the desired crust and no extra wash ups. I have double coated the chicken to get that extra crunchy crust. When single coated its little less in crunch and the chicken flavour is more prominent. So the choice is yours, double dipping or just single. 

Recipe Source: Food wishes

You Will Need:
Buttermilk Marination:
1.5 kg Chicken (I used wings without skin), Cut into 8 pieces
1 tsp Salt
1tsp White Pepper 
1 tsp Paprika
1/4 tsp Cayenne
1/2 tsp Black Pepper
1 tsp Ground Dried herbs (Thyme, Sage, Rosemary,Oregano)
2 Cups Buttermilk

For the Seasoned Flour:
2 cups Plain Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Soda (Optional)
1 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp White pepper
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
1/2 tsp Onion Powder

Peanut oil / Vegetable Oil for Deep Frying

The Cooking:

Step 1:
Wash and pat dry the chicken. In a ziplock bag, mix all the ingredients for the buttermilk mix. Add the chicken and massage and let it marinate overnight or 2 hrs min.

Note: You can substitute buttermilk by mixing 3/4 cup plain yogurt with 1/4 cup of milk.  Stir and make it a quick substitution for buttermilk.

Step 2:
In another ziplock bag, mix all the ingredients for the seasoned flour. Give it a good mix.

Step 3:
Heat oil in a heavy bottom vessel.

Step 4:
Take the chicken out one piece at a time and place them into the seasoned flour. Once all the pieces are into the flour, lock the bag and just toss it so the chicken gets coated with the flour. 

Step 5:
Carefully shake off the excess flour from the chicken and again dip them into the buttermilk, followed but another toss in the seasoned flour. So that becomes the double coating for the chicken. 

Step 6:
Shake off the excess flour and drop them one at a time into the hot oil.

Note: Oil SHOULD NOT be smoking hot. Enough to sizzle instantly. Too hot oil will cook and brown the coating and leave the inside RAW!

Use thongs to turn over the chicken pieces. Fry on medium heat till the chicken is crunchy and golden brown outside. Remove and place on kitchen paper to observe excess oil. 

Serve hot with ketchup or mayo!

Happy Cooking!


I have never been fully satisfied with the look of any of my cakes until I baked this one. Nigella's Quadruple CHOCOLATE LOAF CAKE, well it was supposed to be Quadruple but I guess its not since I stopped with the loaf. This cake had this beautiful deep crack right in the middle and it formed a lovely crust, such a beauty. The loaf alone was not overly sweet and am sure going to drench it with more chocolate next time I make it. And its such a simple cake I tell you. No techniques, no methodology to be followed. Just have all your ingredients at room temperature and you are good to go. Its one bowl, One mix and straight to the oven. 

Nigella made the cake over the top with mixing, drenching and covering the loaf cake with loads of chocolate. But I wanted to keep it a little simple (this time, only this time) and served warm slices of the cake with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. 

Hey that does not mean I going to stop there. Quadruple, am coming for you pretty soon!!!

Makes 10 - 12 Slices approx. 

You Will Need:

200g Cups of Plain Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
50g Cocoa Powder
275g Caster Sugar
175g Unsalted Butter, Room Temperature
2 Large Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
80ml Sour Cream
125ml Boiling Water

The Baking:

Step 1: Preheat oven to 175c

Step 2: Line a 21cm x 11cm, 7.5 cm (mine was a little smaller than her's I guess) deep loaf tin with foil and slightly grease the inside of the tin. Leave a little foil hanging outside the loaf tin, so that it will be easy to lift the cake off the tin.

Step 3: Place all the ingredients except water in a large bowl and whisk everything together using a wooden spoon. Then pour in the recently boiled water (must be hot, not cool) and whisk till everything is combined. 

Note: You can substitute sour cream with plain hung yogurt.


Place all the ingredients except water in a food processor and blitz till smooth. The pour in the boiling water and blitz once again. 

Step 4: Scrap down the batter into the loaf tin, it will be a little liquid batter. place it the preheated oven and bake for about an hour (mine was done somewhere between 30 - 40 mins). You will know when its done when you can smell cake in the air, a straight deep crack on top of the cake and when a cake tester inserted comes out with wet crumbs and NOT CLEAN

Step 5: Once done take out and place the cake on a cooling rack. DO NOT REMOVE the cake from the tin. Let the cake cool completely then remove the cake from the tin and slice as desired with a serrated knife.

Do check out my post on Tips For Cake Baking!

Happy Baking!

Thursday, 10 July 2014

These spongy, melt in your mouth balls need absolutely no introduction. Its popular all over India. The one festival that comes in my mind when I think of GULAB JAMUN, is Diwali! The night before Diwali, my mom makes dozens of these to be given to family & friends on Diwali. And she made these for every Diwali as far as I can remember. My bro buys the readymade jamun mix and I used to help my mom shaping the jamuns (I was a kid that time) and she would fry it and soak them in sugar syrup. This dessert definitely holds beautiful memories for me.  

Then we made these with Khoya and we never bought the readymade mix again. So, don't wait till Diwali, I know you already want to...A grand dessert that can be made easily! 

You Will Need:
For the Jamuns:

250gms of Unsweetned Khoya, at room temperature.
75 gms of Plain Flour
Oil to Deep Fry

For the Sugar Syrup:

1.5 Cups of Water
1.5 Cup of Sugar
1 tsp Rose Water
1 Cardamom

Sliced Almonds to Garnish!

The Cooking:

Making the Jamuns:

Place the khoya in a wide bowl and mix with your hands till smooth & not lumpy. Then add the flour and again mix them together to form a smooth dough.

Cover it with a wet tea towel and rest the dough for 30 mins. Make small balls out of the dough.

Note: Big Jamuns pose a risk of cooking unevenly.

Note: Cover the jamun balls with wet tea towel to avoid them drying out.

Heat a heavy bottom kadai with oil. Drop the jamuns one at a time and cook till they are light brown.

Note: I always do a test jamun first. Just fry one and see if its holding its shape and is cooked through. Cracks, soggy or not holding its shape then add little flour. Mix well and fry. 

Note: Keep the heat down. When fried on high temperature the center will be uncooked and the outside will brown very quick.

Note: DO NOT CROWD the kadai. Fry in small batches.

Note: DO NOT STIR as soon as you them in, they will break. Wait for a min and gently nudge them to the surface.

Once done place them on a paper towel to observe excess oil.

Meanwhile, add the sugar and water in a saucepan and bring it to a boil. Then add the crushed cardamom and rose water. Simmer this for few mins till the syrup is sticky and little thick.

Add the fried jamuns to the sugar syrup and let it soak till serving. 

Happy Cooking!


Amma's Recipe #14

This version of My mom's Biryani is quick, simple yet does not sacrifice in flavour or taste. BIRYANI in a PRESSURE COOKER! In this pressure cooker method the mutton is cooked with onions, tomatoes, mint, coriander and spices and uncooked rice is added to the mutton with required water and cooked till the rice is done. Its so easy and one pot. Recently we both have been trying different Biryani Recipes and sometime I crave for this version. Served hot with boiled eggs, Onions Rita and Biryani Kathirikai

Other Biryani Recipes on blog:

You Will Need:

1 kg Basmati Rice, Soaked 30 mins & Drained
7.5 Cups of Water
A pinch of Orange Colour mixed with 2 tbsp milk

Mutton Marination:
1.5 kg Mutton, Large Cuts
Juice of 1/2 a Lemon
100ml Yogurt
4 Green Cardamoms
4 Cloves
1 Stick Cinnamon

Other Ingredients:
5 cardamom Pods
6 Cloves
2 Cinnamon Sticks
1 Star Anise
1/2 Kg Onions, Thinly Sliced
1/2 Kg Tomato, Chopped
10 Green Chilies, Whole
2 tbsps Ginger Garlic Paste
1/2 Cup Finely Chopped Mint
1/2 Cup Finely Chopped Coriander
1.5 tsp Red Chill Powder, According to taste
Juice of 1/2 a Lemon
100ml Yogurt
50ml Ghee
100ml Vegetable Oil
Salt to Taste

The Cooking:

Step 1:

Marinate the Mutton:
Heat a kadai with a tbsp of oil and roast the cardamom pods, cloves and cinnamon for couple of mins till they change in colour slightly. Then Cool and grind them to a fine powder. In a large bowl place the mutton and add the ground spices, juice of lemon, yogurt & salt. Mix well using your hands making sure you rub the marinate all over the mutton. Leave this to marinate for an hour at least.

Step 2:
Heat a pressure cooked with oil and ghee on high. Once hot crackle the cardamom, cinnamon, bay-leaf and cloves. Then add the sliced onions and green chilli.

Note: Poke the whole chilies with knife to avoid bursting when cooking.

Note: Place a lit on and stir once in a while.

Step 3:
Saute the onions till they turn a deep golden colour. Now add the the ginger garlic paste and saute for 2 -3 mins till the raw flavour of the ginger garlic paste goes. Then add the red chilli powder and yogurt. Keep stirring to till the oil separates and the gravy bubbles.

Note: Stir constantly after adding the ginger garlic paste to avoid the paste from sticking to the bottom.

Adding Ginger Garlic Paste

Adding Red Chilli Powder

Adding Yogurt

Step 4:
Then tumble in the chopped tomatoes and coriander. Stir and lid on. This needs to cook on high flame till the tomatoes are mushy. Keep stirring in between.

Step 5:
Once the tomatoes are all mushy add the marinated mutton and mix well. Add required salt for the biryani followed by lemon juice and cook for 5 mins so that the mutton is well coated with the gravy.

Step 6:
Pour in water and lid on with the weight. Cook the mutton until 4 - 5 whistles or until the mutton is well cooked. Turn off heat and open after the pressure releases on its own.

Before Mutton Cooked

After Mutton is Cooked

Now check for salt and spice. 

Step 7:
Turn on heat on high and now add the rice.

Note: DO NOT put all the rice together. Take handfuls and put them in spreading evenly. 

Give one quick stir and sprinkle colour water. once the rice starts to bubble, put the lid on with the weight and bring the heat to its LOWEST.  

Turn the heat off after exactly 20 mins. 

Step 8:
Once the pressure has been released by itself, open and run a steel spatula around the biryani. Invert it on to a large basin and gently mix everything together. 

This is how it should look after 20 mins. 

Happy Cooking!


Friday, 4 July 2014

I was going through old pictures in my camera and I saw these which I clicked a very long time back and thought i would share the recipe with you. I love this egg sandwich and this was actually taught to me by my granny! Its so simple to make but tastes so good and very filling too. 

Makes 3 Sandwiches

You Will Need:

6 Slices of Sandwich Bread / Wheat Bread / Multigrain
2 tbsps of Butter
Coriander Chutney

For the Omelet:
2 Large Eggs
1 Medium Onion, Finely Chopped
2 Green Chills, Finely Chopped
1/2 Cup of Finely Sliced Mushrooms
2 tbsps of Grated Cheese (Optional)
A tbsp of Butter
Salt & Pepper to Season

The Cooking:

Making the omelet:

Heat a pan with butter on medium heat.
Break the eggs into a bowl and all in the all the ingredients for omelet. Whisk everything together. Pour the egg on the hot pan in two portions, which means you need to make two omelets. Cut the each omelet into two. Keep aside.

 Making the Sandwich:

Spread a thin layer of butter on both sides of the bread. Then apply a thin layer of coriander mint chutney on one side of the bread of each slice. Now place the cut omelets (one half for each set) over the chutney and top it with chutney side bread slice. Repeat it for other slices too.

Place them on a hot toaster and cook till the top is lightly browned. Serve hot with ketchup!

Happy Cooking!


Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Its been over a month since I last visited my mom's place. I love visiting my family. Apart from having fun with my niece and being pampered by everyone, there is great food on the table everyday. My mom is a wonderful cook. My family loves my cooking too. She excels in South Indian cuisine and am known to try my hands on different cuisine across the globe. My bro insists me to cook something for him all the time. He has been a victim for my many a culinary experiments. So I promised him that I would make an Italian Sunday lunch.

I came up with a 4 course menu consisting of a cooler, fresh summer salad, a main course and a frozen dessert. I gathered together the ingredients and my mom had these beautiful Borosil Glasswares & Dishes and instantly I knew they are going to make my food look amazing.

To start off I made a Carrot Ginger Cooler. Its a balanced mix of carrot juice with juice of ginger and freshly squeezed orange juice. I am no fan of carrots but this drink, I just could not get enough of. It was cool & so refreshing and had an eye popping Orange colour to it. I served these in Borosil's Canard Glasses with a sliced orange on the rim. After the cooler comes a simple summer salad. The Insalata Caprese salad...its a very simple salad. It has slices of fresh mozzarella cheese, thickly sliced plum juicy tomatoes with a scattering of fresh basil leaves & orange cherry tomatoes, seasoned with salt and cracked pepper with a simple extra virgin olive oil dressing. The freshness of the ingredients used in this salad and the extra virgin olive oil is what takes this humble salad to the next level. Served on Borosils's Pizza Plate (yes, salad on a pizza plate :) the white of mozzarella, the plush red of the sliced tomatoes, the sunny orange from the cherry tomatoes, fresh green from the basil and specks of cracked pepper made this salad look stunning. `

For the main course it had to be Italian Roasted chicken with pepper & olives. It has to be roast chicken, what's sunday without a roast. And this roast chicken is as easy as it gets. I placed a whole chicken on an oven plate stuffing its cavity with lemon wedges and sprigs of rosemary. Then I scattered roughly chopped red, yellow and orange bell peppers with pitted black olives and few more sprigs of rosemary. A generous drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, generous pinch of kosher salt & freshly cracked black pepper. Its slow roasted in the oven for about 1 1/4 hrs. Once done the chicken is rested for 10 mins and carved. I loved the English Summer - melamine dinner set, so beautiful. And I had to use these to serve the roast chicken. Golden roasted chicken juicy & succulent randomly placed on a bed of roasted yellow, red and orange peppers with black olives popping here and there. And I also served them with some slices of French baguettes to soak up all the juice and olive oil from the roast. One look and you go hungry!

How can I not have dessert to finish off this amazing Italian Sunday Lunch. I churned out some Healthy Strawberry Frozen Yogurt in just 5 mins. Just plain non - fat yogurt, frozen strawberries, some honey and a squeeze of lemon a food processor for 5 mins and its done & freezed overnight. After an amazing meal, I served generous scoops of Strawberry Frozen Yogurt in Borosil's Round Dish with a fresh mint leaf to top it off. The bright pink with a touch of green from the mint is truly a visual treat. There, a perfect end to a perfect meal...and Borosil truly made my food BEAUTIFUL!

Felice Di Mangiare, that's Happy Eating in Italy! ;)

This post is for Indiblogger's My Beautiful Food Contest by Borosil!


Tuesday, 1 July 2014

I have been to this place several times over the past few years. Savoury SeaShell Specialises in Arabian cuisine and they also serve North Indian, South Indian, Italian, Finger foods and varieties of milkshakes, mock-tails, Ice creams, Faloodas and Sizzlers. And recently they have also launched weekend buffets, which am dying to try out.

This time we were 7 adults with a toddler and infant. The place was packed as usual in-spite of being mid of a weekday. To begin with we ordered Cream of Tomato Soup (thats the only soup I order in any hotel) and Chicken Herb Soup. 

Cream of Tomato Soup

Chicken Herb Soup
Both the soups were Delish. Cream of tomato was rich, creamy and little sweet just the way I like it and the chicken herb was a little too much for me. But that's because I don't like herbs much but others really enjoyed it.

For starters we ordered their signature Grill Chicken & Chicken Shawarma accompanied with mayo, garlic sauce, pickled carrots and chillies and kupoos. This we have all the time and it has never disappointed us. Apart from that we also ordered fish fingers, chilli Squid fry, Tawa fried Squid cooked in coconut oil and Samak Al - Faham. 

Grilled Chicken

Fish Fingers

Samak Al - Faham

Chicken Shawarma

Squid Chilli Fry

Tawa Fries Squid 
The fish fingers were really crisp and tasty, the chilli squid was also very good but the Tawa fried squid was little hard but it tasted good. And the Samak Al - Faham was just fantastic, perfectly cooked and flaky.

They serve a number of main courses. Arabian biryani and rices, North Indian sides and flat breads, South Indian parotas and Italian pastas. But we tend to concentrate more on the starters and just order one or two mains. This time we ordered Mixed Fried Rice & Koji Samak.  

Koji Samak

Mixed Fried Rice
Both were good and I loved the Samak koji rice. They serve a fish fillet on a bed of scented rice and a gravy and chutney like side. The way to enjoy this dish is mix the fish, rice and both the gravies together. Its such  flavourful dish.

They have wide range of desserts and mock-tails to choose from. We ordered the classic Vanilla Milkshake with ice cream (my all time favourite, never let's down), Ginger Cooler, Black Lady, Cocoa Tree (this particularly I liked a lot), Mango Delight, Emirates Mock-tail, Arabian Falooda, Falooda delight, and a scoop of strawberry ice cream for the toddler.

Ginger Cooler (Carrot, Ginger & Orange)

Arabian Falooda

Black Lady (Black current)

Mango Delight (Mango Pulp, Lemon & Mint)

Emirates Mock-tail (Mango, Banana with Pista Ice Cream)
I loved all the mock-tails except the Mango Delight :( It must be named Mint Delight, a total let down. I was able to pick up only mint!

Savoury SeaShell:

Food - Excellent
Service - Good
Ambiance - Comfy
Price - Pricy but Worth Every Penny
Other Must Tries - BBQ King Prawns
Will I visit Again - Of course I have already gone there a dozen times.

Happy Dining!



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