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November 29, 2010

Garlic Pull-Apart Rolls Recipe - Step by Step - Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

I had been eyeing this recipe of Garlic Pull Apart Rolls from Suhaina for a long time. When she brought these rolls warm from the oven for our Singapore food bloggers' meet, I was totally sold. Finally managed to make them this weekend. I would highly recommend this to all those who are dying to bake but fear the yeast monster. Trust me when I say these eggless rolls are really fool-proof and you can feel so proud of yourself when done!

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

I halved the recipe and got 8 mini rolls, enough to serve 2 very generously. We had one here and one there, through the weekend.

Garlic Pull-Apart Rolls
Recipe source: Suhaina
Makes 8 mini rolls

Ingredients:
Plain Flour - 1.5 cups
Warm Water- 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp
Yeast - 1/2 tbsp
Salt - 1tsp
Sugar - 1 tbsp
Olive Oil - 1 tbsp + 1 tsp

For Garlic Spread:
Salted butter, at room temperature - 6 tbsp
Minced garlic - 2 tbsp
Chopped coriander leaves - 2 tbsp

How to Make Eggless Garlic Pull Apart Rolls

1. Mix flour, yeast, warm water, salt and sugar together until you get a smooth, slightly stick dough.

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

2. Add oil to your fingertips and knead until the dough springs back when you press with your fingers - about 4-5 mins.

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

3. Wrap in cling film and allow to double by keeping in a warm place for about 45 mins. Meanwhile, make the garlic spread by simpy mixing all the ingredients.

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

4. Grease a baking pan or loaf tin with olive oil. I used my Pyrex loaf pan which was the perfect size for 8 mini garlic rolls.

5. Knock down the air in the dough and divide the dough into two equal portions.

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

6. Transfer one portion of the dough to a floured surface and roll gently into a rough rectangle of 1/2" thickness. Apply more flour sparingly if sticky.

7. Spread about 2 tbsp of garlic spread on one side.

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

8. Roll from one end gently and firmly.

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

9. Cut into half and then each half again into two halves to get 4 equal portions.

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

10. Now place the rolls with the cut side up in the greased pan.
Repeat the same procedure for the remaining dough.

11. Spread a little milk on the rolls and add the remaining garlic spread on top. I am sure sesame seeds as Suhaina has added will make the flavour even better but I didn't have any.

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

12. Allow to rise for another 20 minutes. In the mean time preheat the oven to 180C / 375F.

13. Bake for about 30 mins until the top is golden brown. My Pyrex glass pan usually takes longer to bake in, so mine took about 35 mins to bake just right.

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

These are really really soft and have an amazing flavour. Serve fresh and hot!

Eggless Garlic Rolls Recipe

Notes:

1. The amount of water depends on the type of flour you are using. Use your judgment to get a slightly sticky dough that behaves when you apply oil.

2. The amount of yeast can be reduced if you don't like the flavour of yeast too much in your breads. You can add just 1 tsp and let it double over a couple of hours, slowly.

November 25, 2010

Dahi Ke Kabab Recipe | Quick and Easy Snack Recipes

I have an absolutely brilliant banana cake recipe I want to share with you but I am not happy with how the pictures have turned out. (Update: Here's the Best Ever Banana Cake Recipe) This is the first time I feel like I shouldn't share an okay picture because the recipe is that fabulous and I don't want even one single person to look at the picture and go, "ah looks meh, I am not going to try this" because they are missing out on a LOT.

Phew, talk about passion and banana cake recipes.

Moving on, here's a really nice snack recipe that I flicked from Nita Mehta's Taste of Amritsar (I think). I saw the book in the library and mentally jotted down the recipe. I made it out of memory so forgive if there's something missing as far as authenticity goes. I don't know this cuisine well at all.

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They turned out really really fab. She had also given the recipe for a hot and sweet onion chutney (which I have slathered on the kebabs) and the combination was really mind blowing. Everything comes together in about 30 mins and its this long only because you need hung curd for the recipe.

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The batter needs to be really thick because you are going to shape them and deep fry them. It will be a bit sticky so use wet hands to shape the kebabs.

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Dahi Ke Kabab with Onion Chutney
Source: Nita Mehta
Makes about 12 kababs

Ingredients

For the Kababs:
1 cup hung curd (take about 1.5 cups curd in a muslin cloth and hang over the sink for atleast 2 hours)
1/2 cup besan
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
2 pods green cardamom, powdered
2 cloves, powdered
A pinch of powdered cinnamon (optional, I didn't add any)
Salt to taste

For the Chutney:
1 large onion, sliced thin
1 green cardamom, crushed
2 dry red chilly
1 clove of garlic
A pinch of hing / asafoetida
2 tsp oil
Salt to taste

How to Make Dahi Ke Kababs


For the Kababs

1. Hang the curd as mentioned for atleast 2 hours until you get a thick, sticky resulting mixture. To this, add the rest of the ingredients to make a thick paste-like batter. Don't add any water - if you find the mixture too thick, add milk by the tsp and if you find it too thin, add besan by the tsp.

2. Heat oil until almost smoking, shape dough into small, flat kebabs and deep fry until golden brown on both sides. Serve immediately with the onion chutney.

For Chutney (I recommend making this first since the kababs have to be served HOT)

- Heat oil and saute onions until golden brown. Add the chilly, salt, crushed cardamom, hing and garlic, give it a stir before removing from fire.

- Cool and grind to a smooth paste without water.

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PS: The measurements and ingredients given in this recipe are approximate so please adjust to your own taste.

PPS: The pictures in this post were taken with my old camera - Canon SX10 IS :)

November 23, 2010

The Food in Egypt

I love Arabic food. Well most of them atleast.

Egyptian Food

Hummus and related dips - yum.

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Couscous, rice and roasted meat - yum again.

Egyptian Food

Shawarma - total YUM.

We had the yummiest chicken shawarma in Ibn Batuta Mall in Dubai. It cost 6dhm and is easily the best shawarma I have tasted!

Egyptian Food

Weird black olive salad - erm.. not yum.

Egyptian Food

Surprisingly, we found a lot of good bread and pastry in almost every buffet we had. A welcome breakfast, for sure. Warm rolls with butter melting between them.

Egyptian Food

Persimmons (the orange fruits in the boxes at the bottom) were everywhere in Cairo. Probably cheap too.

Egyptian Food

Ah yes, meet my lover - falafel. Vegetarians, get ready to eat tons of this if you every visit Egypt. Probably one of the only options you will have in a local Egyptian restaurant - unless dipping cucumber in hummus and calling it a meal is your thing.

Egyptian Food

Karkade. Dried hibiscus leaves that are then brewed into tea. I tasted them but they are not my cup of tea (hehe). Taken at Khan-El Khalili Market, a must-visit if you are in Cairo.

Egyptian Food

Egyptians love their mint. Its everywhere, literally! What a fantastic, simple and aromatic idea for a table arrangement though.

Egyptian Food

Ah yes, the Egyptian answer to nan - Aish Merahrah. Local bakeries make these in bulk and most households just buy them off the street and serve with meat, vegetables and dips. This lady was making a huge batch and willing posed for pictures (we had to pay her though, you need to pay for everything in Egypt!)

Egyptian Food

The tandoor actually runs on gas but looked ancient.

Egyptian Food

Fresh and hot. Has to be served immediately though, otherwise the bread turns hard and rubbery.

Egyptian Food

Ok don't judge my camera, this was taken in almost no light. An Arabic dessert that I had by the dozens and was present in all dessert counters. I think this is what the Greeks called Melomakarona which has Arabic origins but I could be wrong. If you know the name of this dessert, please leave a comment!

November 15, 2010

Twix Candy Bar Triple Chocolate Brownies Recipe

Have you ever tasted brownies from Brownie Cottage in Hyderabad? They have an outlet in GVK mall in the movie theaters there. I tasted their After 8 Mint Brownies and fell in love with them. They also had various other candie bar brownies so here's my attempt at recreating one of them.

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The caramel in the twix bars becomes more chewy and the biscuit retains in crunch. Its heavenly!

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One of my favourite chocolates - Twix!

Twix Candy Bar Brownies
Adapted from: Recipe Girl
Makes 12 large pieces


Ingredients:
1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
3 oz  / 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips or chopped semi-sweet chocolate
6 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 tsp instant coffee powder
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup granulated sugar (regular white sugar)
1/2 cup + 1 tbsp cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tbsp baking powder
A pinch of salt
2 twix bars (singles) chopped into 1/2" pieces (chill before cutting)

How I Made It:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F / 180C. Grease an 8" brownie / cake pan and set aside.

2. In a pan set over another pan of boiling water, melt both the chocolates and butter together until smooth and glossy. Let cool slightly.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, coffee powder, vanilla and sugar. Stir the egg mixture into the slightly cooled chocolate mixture. Cool to room temperature.

4. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt; add to batter. Stir chopped Twix bars into chocolate mixture. Then pour into prepared baking pan and smooth top with a rubber spatula. You can reserve some slices and place on top too.

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5. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean with a few crumbs attached; do not overbake! Let cool completely, then cover tightly and chill overnight. Chilled brownies are easier to cut and they actually taste better the next day.

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These makes great gifts for a kid's birthday party or generally just bake them for friends and bask in their chocolate-y gratitude :)

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November 11, 2010

Hyderabadi Dahi Bhindi Masala - Step by Step Recipe

I have been posting way too many dessert recipes of late so here's something to offset that. I have talked about my dislike towards the sliminess of Okra in my Okra Fry with Peanuts recipe post so you can rest assured that if I use Okra, the final dish will show no signs of sliminess. This is another one of them.

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Hyderabadi Dahi Bhindi Masala
Source: Monsoon Spice
Serves: 2 - 4 as a side dish

Ingredients:
3 cups Bhindi/Okra, washed, dried and cut into small pieces
8 shallots, sliced fine (or use 1 large onion)
2 tomatoes, finely chopped (or 1 tbsp tomato paste)
1 tsp ginger garlic Paste
A pinch of sugar (optional)
1 cup yogurt, beaten
1 tbsp grated coconut, fresh/frozen
8 cashew nuts, soaked in warm milk for at least 10 mins
A generous pinch of kasuri methi / dried fenugreek leaves
1 tsp garam masala
½ -1 tsp red chilli powder
½ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp amchur / dry mango powder
1 tsp coriander powder / malli podi
1 tbsp oil
Salt to taste

For Tempering:
1 tsp Mustard Seeds
½ tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
1 tsp Urad Dal/Split Black Lentils
2-3 Dry Red Chillies, halved
A Pinch of Hing/Asafoetida
Few Curry Leaves
1 tbsp Oil

How I Made It:

1. Sia's tip: Sprinkle little salt to okra pieces and mix well. Keep it aside for half an hour. This helps in reducing the sliminess while frying the okra. I did this and it worked!

2. Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pan and add okra pieces to it. Fry them continuously at high flame till they turn brown retaining their crispiness, about 7-10 mins. Alternatively you can also deep fry them. Transfer these fried okras to a plate lined with kitchen/paper towel and set aside.

3. Grind soaked cashews and coconut to smooth paste adding the milk used for soaking. Set aside.

4. Heat oil for tempering in a pan and add mustard seeds to it. When they pop, add cumin seeds, urad dal, dry red chillies, hing and curry leaves and sauté it for a minute till the dal turns golden brown in colour.

5. Now add finely chopped onions and fry till they turn light golden. Add ginger-garlic paste and fry for another minute. Add all the dry masalas - garam masala, red chilli powder, amchur, turmeric and coriander powder - along with kasuri methi and fry for a minute in sim.

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6. Mix in finely chopped tomatoes (if using) and sauté till they turn pulpy and release their juice, about 2 minutes (or add the tomato paste at this stage). Now add ground cashew-coconut paste and mix well. Keep stirring for a minute.

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7. Add yogurt, sugar and salt to taste and stir well. Depending on the consistency of gravy required, add ½-1 cup of water and mix well. Simmer the gravy and let it cook uncovered for another 5 minutes.

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8. Mix in fried okra and adjust salt. Add little more water if you think the gravy is too thick and simmer for another 3-5 minutes.

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9. Done! Serve with rotis or any mixed rice.

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November 7, 2010

Easy Eggless Chocolate Mousse - Nigella Lawson Recipe

I barely had time to do this month's Sweet Punch - Easy Eggless Chocolate Mousse - a Nigella Lawson recipe. We are packing to go off on our big vacation of the year, the house hunt just got over and we are shifting first week of December, having moved to a new role, work is also not that laid back anymore - so a lot of stuff happening all at the same time!

easy chocolate mousse - nigella lawson recipe

Still, I couldn't pass over this easy chocolate mousse recipe because even before this month's challenge was shared, I had bookmarked to try this, along with the Chocolate Pistachio Fudge which I managed to make sometime back. 

marshmallows for easy chocolate mousse recipe

The secret to this recipe is marshmallows. The gelatine in this eliminates the need to use eggs and also the lengthy setting time that's common for classic mousse recipes.

Eggless Easy Chocolate Mousse Recipe
Source: How to be a Domestic Goddess
Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:
Mini marshamallows - 150 g (I used regular ones)
Butter - 50 g, softened
Chocolate - 250 g (I used 60% dark chocolate, and it was super intense), roughly broken into pieces
Hot water - 60 ml
Cream - 250 ml
Vanilla extract - 1 tsp

INSTRUCTIONS:
1. In a heavy-bottom saucepan, melt the marshmallows, butter, chocolate and water together, stirring every now and then. Note that the marshmallows take a while to meld down so I cut each further into 4 pieces. I'd recommend you do the same if using regular marshmallows.

2. Meanwhile, whip the cream with vanilla until thick.

3. Fold it into the cooling chocolate mixture until you have a smooth mixture.

4. Pour into individual ramekins / small serving bowls and let it set in the fridge for about 1 hour.

I halved the recipe and got exactly 2 portions of intense, chocolate-y mousse that was silky and had a wonderful texture. Using semi-sweet chocolate is more advisable since the flavour is intense otherwise.

November 4, 2010

Easy Basic Chocolate Brownie Recipe

I love using chocolate bars while baking and definitely feel like the taste and texture is significantly better when I do. The only thing that I don't look forward to is the melting of the chocolate, especially if it involves a double-boiler set up.

Basic chocolate brownies recipe

That's why these brownies are so ideal when you want a fuss-free, easy and yummy snack. The ingredients are most probably lurking in your pantry already and you need less than 20 mins to whip them up before sticking it into the oven.

Basic Chocolate Brownie Recipe with Cocoa Powder
Makes about 12 large squares

Ingredients:
1/2 cup unsalted butter (doesn't have to be room temp, isn't that awesome?)
1 cup regular white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa powder
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
A pinch of salt

How to make Chocolate Brownies:

1. Preheat oven to 350F / 180. Grease a 9" square (or round, who will know) pan.

2. Heat the butter on low flame until just melted (use the microwave or stovetop works just fine too). Stir in the sugar and vanilla.

3. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the cocoa; beat well until well blended.

4. Finally, add the flour, baking powder and salt; beat well.

5. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until brownies begin to pull away from the pan sides.

Basic chocolate brownies recipe

There are a dozen different ways you can customize this basic chocolate brownie recipe, that's why this is the basic brownie recipe. Add orange zest, white chocolate chips, chopped walnuts, let your imagination go wild! I have baked these with some a topping of chocolate ganache and it's really out of this world. If you prefer an eggless brownie, check out this fail-proof eggless brownie recipe

November 1, 2010

Sanjeev Kapoor's Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

Machine-cut pineapples drenched in sugar syrup, how pretty and perfect! I used these babies in a pretty nice pineapple upside down cake recipe. I often end up baking with chocolate whenever I do bake and when I was asked to bring dessert for a potluck a few weeks back, I resolved not to let chocolate anywhere near the dish.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

I had just received Sanjeev Kapoor's Cakes and Bakes, so decided to flip through it. I have to admit at this point that the first time I baked this cake, it didn't turn out well. I under-estimated the bake time, and when I turned the cake upside down, it was still squiggly in the middle. That turned into something of a disaster but I salvaged it and called it pudding in a way that would have made my mom proud. 

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

This recipe is slightly fansy-pansy. It calls for demerara sugar. I bought it just for this purpose, just so that I won't screw up a second time.

Sidenote: Is demarara sugar available in India? If you know if a place, do leave a comment. Thanks!

Pineapple Upside Down Cake
Makes one 9" cake
Adapted from Sanjeev Kapoor's Cakes and Bakes
(Amazon | FlipKart)

Ingredients:
1 cup regular all purpose flour or maida
8 slices canned pineapple, drained
150gm / 3/4 cup butter at room temperature
3/4 cup demerara sugar
1 tsp baking powder
3 eggs, separated
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1/2 cup milk (low fat works too)

How I Made It:

1. Preheat the oven to 190C / 275 F

2. Mix 1/4 cup butter with the demerara sugar and spread it at the bottom of a greased 9" cake pan.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

3. Arrange a layer of pineapple slices over it, slicing them to adjust and fill the gaps.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

4. Sift the flour and baking powder. Keep aside.

5. Beat the egg yolks in a small bowl and add in the rest of the butter (1/2 cup) and the vanilla essence. Combine until smooth.

6. Whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. Don't overdo this otherwise the egg whites will turn dry.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

7. Fold in the sifted sugar, one tablespoon at a time. Then fold in the egg yolk mixture.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

8. And finally the flour mixture, 1/4 cup at a time. Be gentle and only mix until the flour disappears into the batter. Don't over-mix.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

9. Pour the batter over the pineapple slices and bake for about 30-40 mins.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

10. Make sure that you test the cake and not go by time because the first time I did that, I ended up under-baking the cake by about 10 mins or so. This one below is done perfectly!

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

The butter-sugar mixture will caramelize and come up a bit at the sides. Its yum!

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

Unfortunately, I don't have a great final picture of the finished cake. I had to pack this in foil and take it for a party so no pics of slices.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe

Its definitely tasty but I am not satisfied with it. I think pineapple, butter, sugar and flour can make something better - so the search is still on. Leave a comment if you have a great pineapple upside down cake recipe on your site!