Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Okra and Potato Curry - Nepalese Style


Ingredients:

8 oz Okra
1 red Onion 2 medium potatoes
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon
1/2  teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon szechaun pepper powder
2 tablespoons mustard oil ( I used sunflower)
1 clove garlic finely chopped
3 green chillies finely chopped

Method:

1. Wash the Okra and dry throughly.
2. Cut the Okra into thin strips.
3. Wash and peel the potatoes and cut into strips.
4. Peel the onion and cut into slices
5. Heat oil in a pan when it is hot add the garlic and onions and saute for 1-2 minutes, Add the okra nad potatoes and saute for 2-3 minutes longer.
6. Add the salt, turmeric, green chillies, pepper and mix well.
7. Cover and cook on low heat until potatoes are cooked.(Approx 10 minutes)
8. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with  fresh chopped coriander
Serve with Chappatis or bread of choice.

NB -It is recommended that this dish is cooked in mustard oil to get the authentic flavour of the dish.


You may like;
Nepalese dhal

Submitting to:
Flavours of Nepal event by simply.food guest hosted by Napurs UK Rasoi

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Sugar cookies and Dr Oetker Decorating Products and Giveaway

Dr Oetker baking products are  perfect for anyone who enjoys baking.Their range includes, baking ingredients, ready to roll fondant icing, fast and easy ready to use royal icing and colourful edible and non edible cake and cookie decorations in an array of designs and colours.  You can even get  natural food  colours and flavourings , it's truely  a haven of goodies for any baking enthsiast .I recently received a package from Dr Oetker with  a selection of their products to try and I have been having fun  testing them all in my cake and cookie making.


I made these sugar cookies using some of the ingredients that I received and they turned out amazing especially the decoration which was fast and easy to do using the chocolate designer icing pouch which came with interchangeable decorating tips

Delectable sugar cookies with chocolate icing.

Ingredients:

16 oz plain flour
8 oz  caster sugar
8 oz butter(room temperature)
1  level teaspoon Dr Oetker bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon Dr Oetker vanilla essence
1/2 cup milk approx

For decoration:
Dr Oetker chocolate designer icing pouch
Dr Oetker chocolate sprinkles

Method:

1. Cream the butter and sugar and add the bicarbonate of soda.
2. Add the flour and gradually add the milk to form a dough. (you may not need to use all the milk)
3. Roll the dough in cling film and rest for 30 minutes.
4. On a floured surafce roll out the dough and cut our desired cookie shapes.
5. Place the cookies on a lined baking tray and bake in a preheated 190 degrees C/ 375 degrees F for
12-15 minutes until golden brown.
6. Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
7. Once cooled, decorate using the chocolate designer icing and sprinkle with the chocolate strands.

Submitting  to:
Lets cook for valentine chocolate / hearts event.


I would like to thank  Dr Oetker for the products they kindly supplied, all views in this review are my own.
I am pleased to announce that Dr Oeteker has kindly agreed to send a mini selection of baking and decorating products to one winner of  this giveaway.
 How To Enter:
·         Simply complete the Rafflecopter widget below to verify your entries
·         Entries can be via blog comment, Facebook, Twitter etc
·         Please read the rules below
·         Closing date -Midnight  10th March 2012


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Tzatkizi -A greek yoghurt dip and total yoghurt review.

Recently I was sent a selection of  of Total greek yoghurt to sample. Being a regular yoghurt eater and making my own yoghurt daily, I was very eager to sample total yoghurt as it would save me so much time to be able to have a yoghurt that tasted great and could be bought in the supermarket.

Total Greek yoghurt comes in three varieties classic, 2% and 0%, and two sizes 170g and 500g. The individual  150g pot also comes as a split pot with 120g of 0% yoghurt and 30g of flavours such as honey,strawberry,blueberry and tropical fruits.

The yoghurt was rich and creamy and tasted great and above all it is:
·        100% natural
·        LOW (or no fat)
·        No additives or preservatives
·        Made with only 2 ingredients – milk and live yoghurt cultures
·        A good source of protein
·        Incredibly versatile
·        A great substitute for cream, crème fraiche and mayo.

I tried it in cakes, used it to make a salad dressing, made smoothies with it and even attempted frozen yoghurt with the delicious fruit flavours with wonderful results.
My only complaint was that the individual 120g yoghurt split pot was generously filled to the brim and it was almost impossible to add the fruit compote in it to mix without it all spilling over. I had to tranfer the yoghurt into a bowl to do this, which is a little difficult if you want yoghurt on the go.My suggestion to total would be please make a bigger pot so mixing is easier.
Tzatkizi ,one of the my classic tried and tested recipes, I recreated it using the  the 0% Total yoghurt . It turned out delicious and was made in minutes as I did not have to strain the yoghurt as I would have done  in my original recipe . The Tzatkini turned out to be rich and creamy and tasted exactly as my own made from home made yoghurt. I shall definately cheat in future and use TOTAL.


A rich and creamy yoghurt and cucumber dip flavoured with garlic .

Ingredients:

500g 0% Total GreekYoghurt
½ cucumber
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic
 1 pinch paprika powder

Method:

1. Empty one pot of Total  o%  fat Total greek yoghurt in to a bowl and mix well.
2. Peel the cucumber and cut in half, remove the seeds and grate the cucumber.
3. Squeeze the grated cucumber to remove surplus liquid..
4. Peel the garlic and finely mince it to a smooth paste.
5. To the yoghurt add the cucumber,the garlic and olive oil  and salt  and mix well.
6.Transfer to a serving bowl,cover and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.
Before serving sprinkle with a pinch of paprika powder

Serve with warm toasted pitta bread or crackers .





The views in this review are my own. Total Yoghurt supplied me a selection of yoghurt only, hamper was my own and used for photographic  purpose only.

Monday, 20 February 2012

Peanut butter chocolate chip cookies ~Secret recipe club 20th February

This is my  assignment with the Secret Recipe Club.The aim of the club is that you are allocated a blog from which you have to select  a recipe and try  it and blog about it.

My challenge for this month was to cook from Danielle's blog "A day in the life". Looking through her blog I noticed that she is a big pumpkin fan and lots of her recipes include pumpkin. Not having any pumpkin I finally settled for  Peanut butter chocolate chip cookies. The original recipe can be found here.

Delicious peanutty, chocolate chip cookies that are chewy and delectable.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon flax seeds (instead of egg.)
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup peanut butter
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
1 1/4 cups chocolate chips

Method:

1.Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
2.In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
3.Add  3 tablespoons water to the flax seeds and beat , leave aside for 5 minutes.
4.Add the flax seed mixture , vanilla, and peanut butter. Beat until smooth.
5.Mix in the flour, baking powder, and salt.
6.Stir in the chocolate chips.
7.Drop spoonfuls of dough onto a cookie sheet.
8.Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until lightly browned.
Enjoy with a glass of cold milk.

You may like:
Coconut and Orange scented cookies.

Submitting to:
Flavours of USA and Canada

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Free Tickets BBC Good Food Show Spring at Glow Bluewater


BBC Good Food Show Spring
12 – 15 April 2012, Bluewater


The BBC Good Food Show Spring is launching at Glow, Bluewater in April  where there is an opportunity to see a  line up of celebrity chefs and TV programmes never before seen under one roof in Kent!

Tickets to the Show include a session in the 650 seat Supertheatre which gives visitors a chance to enjoy sessions including Saturday Kitchen Live and MasterChef. On top of this visitors can enjoy live demonstrations from some of the nation’s favourite TV foodie faces including James Martin, Gino D’Acampo, John Torode and Gregg Wallace, Gennaro Contaldo and Olly Smith. Plus the Show will host the country’s first chance to see the MasterChef Champion 2012 live on stage!


Celebrity Chef James Martin says “The line up for the BBC Good Food Show Spring is looking set to be one of their best. This is a rare opportunity for members of the public to see so many of their food heroes cooking live all under one roof! What a fantastic opportunity to meet your favourite chefs, star spot plus shop from some of the country’s finest producers!”

 
Saturday Kitchen
See James Martin host these live sessions featuring celebrity guests, the omelette challenge and food heaven and hell.

The MasterChef Experience
See the 2012 MasterChef Champion Live on stage for the very first time! Plus featuring sessions from John Torode, Gregg Wallace and the 2011 champion Tim Anderson - it really is MasterChef brought to life.

Celebrity Chefs
Pick up inspiration from some of the nation’s favourite chefs including James Martin who will be demonstrating his skills cooking fresh seasonal and local produce in front of a live audience.

Shopping
Taste try and buy your way round over 100 fantastic producers including areas dedicated to FoodLovers approved produce and Produced in Kent.


To book please visit
or call 0844 581 1362

Tickets include timed show entry and a seat in the Supertheatre

Timed show entry times:

Morning session
Afternoon session


Ticket type
Advance standard
Advance gold*
On the door (standard only)
Adult
£16.00
£18.00
£20.00
Over 65s
£14.00
£16.00
£18.00
Child (6-16 yrs)
£8.00
£10.00
£10.00


For more information please visit BBCGoodFoodShow.com
£1.75 booking fee per ticket applies.
Child ticket policy
Under 16s (6-15yrs) not permitted on weekdays
Under 5s free every day
*Includes gold seat in the Supertheatre. Gold seats are located within the front 9 rows of the theatre.

After reading this are you excited to visit the show??

I have good news ,BBC Good food show have kindly offered to give 3 pairs of tickets to three lucky winners of this competition.

How To Enter

·         Simply complete the Rafflecopter widget below to verify your entries
·         Entries can be via blog comment, Facebook, Twitter etc
·         Please read the rules below
·         Closing date - Midnight 25/03/2012


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, 17 February 2012

Nepalese potato salad (Aloo Acchar)


Spicy warm potato salad that has a delicious spicy smokey flavour .

Ingredients:

10 baby new potatoes
1.5 tablespoons sesame seeds
2-3 green chillies finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon  turmeric powder
Juice of half a lemon
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 tablespoon finely chopped red onion
1 tablespoon fresh chopped coriander leaves
1/2 teaspoon chilli powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Method:

1. Steam the potatoes in their jackets till tender(removing skin is optionall).Cut them into into halves.
2. Place the sesame seeds in a dry pan and roast the till they look well roasted and crisp.
3.Remove the pan from the heat and let the sesame seeds cool.
4.Transfer the sesame seeds to a coffee grinder and grind to a fine powder.
5. Heat the oil and toss the potatoes in it, add the ground sesame seeds,salt, chillies, chilli powder, turmeric powder, lemon juice and onion  toss together so that all the potatoes are coated in the spice mixture.
6.Tranfer to a serving dish and garnish with coriander leaves .

Receipe source:
Nepal  asian vegetarian recipes

Submitting to:
Flavours of Nepal event by simply.food guest hosted by Napurs UK Rasoi

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Nepalese Chai (tea)Cookies


Fragrant aromatic spices that tickle and  tantalise your taste buds in every bite.

Ingredients:

4 oz  butter, softened
2 -3 tablespoons  cold black tea
4 oz granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
8 oz all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon salt

Method:

1.Add the butter and sugar to a bowl and cream  together  until well blended.
2.Stir in flour, spices and salt until just combined, form a dough with the black tea.
3.Wrap the dough in cling film and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
4. Dust a clean surface with plain flour and roll out the dough to approx 3-5mm thick.
5. Cut out desired shapes with cookie cutters, alternatively  for a more rustic look pinch walnut sized balls and flatten them in your palm before placing on baking tray lined with parchment paper.
6.Bake in a preheated oven 175 degrees C / 350 degrees F  for approx 15-20 minutes  or until lightly golden.
7. Remove from oven and immediately  transfer to wire rack for cooling.
 Serve with hot Nepalese spicy  Chai (Tea)
These cookies are crisp and crunchy they are not the chewy type. They are perfect for dunking.



Recipe adapted  from here
You may like:
Nepalese Dhal
Submitting to:
Anjalis cakes cookies and dessert event.
Flavours of Nepal event by simply.food guest hosted by Napurs UK Rasoi


Sravs Cooking concept Dishes for loved ones event

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Puff pastry mini Apple bites.


Delectable cinnamon and apples bites that will melt in your mouth.

Ingredients:

1 sheet ready to roll puff pastry
2 granny smith apples
4 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon powder

Method:

1. Peel the apples and grate  them.
2. Add the sugar and the cinnamon to the apples and mix well.
3. Place the puff pastry on a flat surface that is dusted with a little flour.
4. Spoon the apple mixture on to the puff pastry rectangle and smooth the filling out right to the edges of the pastry.


5. Starting at the long edge of the puff pastry rectangle,  start to roll the pastry tightly incasing the apple filling.Stop when you get to the centre of the pastry rectangle.
6. Roll the pastry in the same way from the opposite end of pastry rectangle to meet in the centre.
7. Slice the roll into 1 inch pieces and place on a greased baking tray. Shape the pastry so that it resembles hearts .
8. Bake in a pre heated oven 190 degrees C / 375 degrees F for 20 minutes until golden brown.
9. Remove from oven and immediately transfer the apple pastry bites to a cooling rack.
10. Dust with icing sugar and serve with a cup of coffee


Submitting to:
Anjalis cakes cookies and dessert event.
 Lets cook for valentine chocolate/ hearts event.



Sunday, 12 February 2012

Nepalese Dhal (Lentil Soup)


Delicious and protein packed dhal with simple aromatic flavours.

Ingredients:

6 oz Moong dhal without husk, washed and soaked for 2 hours.
1 pint water
1 teapoon salt
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon fresh ginger paste
1/2 teaspoon fresh garlic paste
3 green chillies cut into slits
2 tablespoons sunflower oil (or clarified butter)
2 tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon  chilli powder
1 tablespoon fresh chopped  coriander
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds

Method:

1.Drain the presoaked dhal and place it in a large saucepan, cover with 1 pint water and bring to boil, turn heat down and simmer on low heat till dhal is cooked.
2. Finely chop the tomatoes and puree them  in blender.
3. Add oil or clarified butter in a pan when it is  hot add the cumin seeds and the garlic, saute for a minute , add the ginger and pureed tomatoes and cook for 2-3 minutes.
4. Add the salt, chilli powder, turmeric powder and lemon juice and cook for another 2-3 minutes more.Add this spice mixture to the pre boiled dhal and bring it to boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 3-4  minutes adding a little extra water if needed.
5. Turn off heat and transfer dhal to a serving pot.Garnish with fresh coriander leaves and green chillies.
Serve with boiled rice and pickle.


Recipe Idea from: Nepali-Food.com

Submitting to:
Flavours of Nepal event by simply.food guest hosted by Napurs UK Rasoi

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Carrot Halwa- Blog Hop Wednesday 8th February.



This is my entry for Blog Hop Wednesday started by Radhika of Tickling Palates. Its a beautiful concept where not only do you get to make new  blogger friends, cook from their blogs but in return they visit your blog and try out your recipes too.

If you are interested in  joining Blog Hop Wednesday here is how it works:

"The plot behind this attempt is to form 2 groups and make pairs with a blogger who will be your partner for that particular month. This happens every 2nd wednesday of the month. You will then go through your partner’s blog, select, choose, cook, click and post the recipe in your blog on Wednesday and vice versa. The following month you will have a new partner. This way not only you tend to your blog at intervals but also learn some new recipes along the way and get to know a lot of bloggers and make friends."



This recipe is  from Harini's blog Tamalapaku .The selection of recipes in her blog  was superb and I finally book marked three recipes to try, apple salad, the brazilian orange rice and the carrot halwa.  For blog hop I selected the carrot halwa recipe as it was simple and easy to make.I followed  the Harini's recipe but added my  personal touch of saffron and cardamom powder to the Halwa.


Sweet, aromatic carrot halwa fragranced with cardamom and saffron.

Ingredients:

8 medium sized carrots
1/2 a tin condensed milk
2 tablespoons Ghee (clarified Butter)
1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder
Pinch of saffron soaked in 1 tablespoon warm milk.
1 tablespoon chopped mixed nuts(Almonds, cashew)

Method :

1. Peel and grate the carrots.Keep aside.
2. Add the ghee in a heavy bottom saucepan and wait for it to heat up.
3. Add the grated carrots to the ghee  and saute them for 5-6 minutes on medium heat  till they turn soft and change colour.
4.Add the condensed milk, and saffron soaked in milk  and keep stirring the mixture making sure it does not stick to pan and burn. Cook  5-6 minutes more until the mixture thickens and starts to leave the sides of the pan.
5. Remove from heat and add the cardamom powder.
6. Transfer to serving dishes and garnish with nuts.
Serve as it is or with Ice cream.

You may like:
Semolina halwa

Submitting to: 


Monday, 6 February 2012

Giveaway~ Wahl James Martin Food Processor White & Black


On my recent visit to the BBC Good Food Show, I visited the WAHL stand and had the opportunity to look at their James Martin range of kitchen gadgets. I was particularly drawn to the Black and white food processor which looked neat and compact and had all the functions I was looking for in a food processor. When I was asked by WAHL to test it ,I was more than pleased to try it out.

The Black and White James Martin food processor is a powerful 900W Food Processor with turbo function. It comes complete with a 1.75 litre blender jug, citrus juicer, stainless steel chopping blade, dough blade, and an assist blade. There is also an assortment of stainless steel slicing/shredding/julienne disks.
I have used the processor in making pastry, mixing cakes, shredding vegetables  for salad and using the blender jug for whipping milkshakes and smoothies and I am pleased  to vouch that this machine does all that it claims to do.

Pros:
  • I particularly like the easy clean removable blade and the generous large bowl size which was perfect for cake mixes in large quantities.
  • The assist blade that enabled you to lift the original blade higher up if you were mixing larger quantities
  • The blender jug has a removable blade attachment for easy cleaning too.
  • The assortment of disks enabled me to slice, shred, and grate by changing the various disks which are all dishwasher safe.
  • The processor comes with an assembly booklet complete with illustrations of components that also includes three recipes in the back of it. It also comes with a DVD featuring James martin demonstrating recipes using the gadget.
  • The processor comes with a built in safety lock that only allows the processor to work when all the accessories are placed on the unit in the correct position. It has clear symbols on the processor showing unlock and locking position too.
Cons:
  • The only tricky bit was that the lid of the jug had to be fitted on in a particular way to make it work and it was not apparently clear in the instructions given.
  • As both the bowl and the lids have to lock, you have to unlock the bowl to open the lid if you want to push food down mid way during processing it was a little tricky to unlock with one hand.
  • It was tricky to clean food particles that collected inside the plastic processor drive shaft that fitted inside the bowl. A small brush was necessary which WAHL did not provide.
Overall, I an enjoying using this processor, its stylish, neat, compact, neutral in colour and it does not take up a lot of space on my kitchen top.
My only suggestion to WAHL would be that they consider providing a plastic cover for the processor, a storage box for all the components as there are many loose parts to keep safe and also include a small brush to clean the hard to get places.

Picture courtesy of WAHL

All opinions stated above are my own, I am certainly loving my new gadget and really enjoyed putting it to the test.  I am pleased to announce that WAHL have kindly agreed to giveaway one food processor to one luck winner.Thankyou WAHL for such a wonderful giveaway.

Rules:
  • This giveaway is open to all readers over 18 who live in the UK, Europe ,USA or Canada.
  • The winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter (which uses random.org) and announced on this page.
  • The winner will be contacted by e-mail, if they do not respond within a 48 hours  another winner may be chosen.
  • There is one prize of a Wahl James Martin range Black and White food processor..
  • I am running this competition in good faith on behalf of Wahl, who will be responsible for sending the prize to the winner. Their decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. They reserve the right to substitute the prize for one of a similar type / value if the prize above is not available.
  • Instructions form part of the terms and conditions
  • Entries using any software or automated process to make bulk entries will be disqualified.
  • No cheating. Please do follow the instructions. I will verify the winning entry and check that you have commented / tweeted / subscribed etc. Anyone who cheats will be disqualified.
  • There is one main way to enter and several ways to get bonus entries, including bonus daily entries. Follow the instructions in the form above. If you already like / follow comment in the rafflecopter widget and let me know to get your entries.

How To Enter

·         Simply complete the Rafflecopter widget below to verify your entries
·         Entries can be via blog comment, Facebook, Twitter etc
·         Please read the rules
·         Closing date -Midnight 02/03/2012



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, 3 February 2012

No Bake Pomegranate Cheesecake

Crunchy biscuit base with a delicious creamy mascarpone and pomegrante topping.

Ingredients:

For Base:
60 grams butter
60 grams oats
12 digestive wholemeal biscuits

For pomegranate syrup:
125 ml pomegranate juice
30 grams tablespoon caster sugar

For cream Topping:
250 grams mascarpone cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
60 ml single cream
75 grams icing sugar icing sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence

1 large pomegranate
15 grams icing sugar for dusting.

Method:

1. In a heavy bottom pan add the pomegranate juice and bring to boil, reduce the heat and simmer until juice reduces to half the quantity.
2. Add the sugar and simmer until sugar is totally dissolved and a rich syrup forms. Turn off heat and keep aside.
3. Cream together the icing sugar, vanilla essence, mascarpone and cream until it is smooth and creamy. Put into a large piping bag fitted with star nozzle and refrigerate.
4. In a dry frying pan toast the oats for 2-3 minutes and remove from hot pan. Allow to cool and then crush slightly.
5. Crush the biscuits to form a coarse crumbly texture. Add the toasted oats and crushed biscuits to a large bowl and mix together.
6. Melt the butter and add it to the crushed biscuits and oats mixture and stir the mixture until it looks like wet sand.
7. Take 4 individual tartlets with loose bottoms and line them with cling film.
8. Press the biscuit and oat mixture into the tartlets case packing the mixture firmly into the sides and smoothing the tops with the help of the back of a metal spoon. Place the filled tartlet cases into the fridge for two hours to allow the biscuit bases to set.
9. Peel and de seed the pomegranate making sure no white bits are stuck to the seeds as this will make them bitter.
10. In a bowl add the pomegranate seeds and 4-5 tablespoons of prepared pomegranate syrup and mix well. Set aside
11. Remove the chilled tartlet cases from the fridge and carefully lift out the biscuit bases from the tartlets cases. Peel away the cling film and place the firm set biscuit bases onto a serving plate.
12. Pipe a ring of rosettes with the chilled mascarpone cream mixture on top of the biscuit base.
13. In the centre of the biscuit base spoon some of the pomegranate and syrup mixture.
14. Dust with icing sugar and serve immediately.

This recipe has been featured in Take a break - My favourite recipes issue 3 February page 57.
If you like this recipe please drop by the face page and vote for it here.


You may like:
Lemon Cheesecake.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Lets Cook with Leftovers ~ Roundup.


Here is the round up for Lets Cook With left overs. There are some wonderful recipes and ideas to use up your left over food and give them a new lease of life. Thanks to everyone who participated.





The next event in this series is Lets cook for Valentine Chocolate/Hearts event.
Please do drop by and check this event out and to link up your entries.

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