ironamma

A new wave of vegetarian cooking!

Archive for the tag “food”

Turtle Sculpture out of Fruits

How long do turtles live? Over a 100 yrs. This turtle fruit sculpture is amazing; refrigerated will live for 1 wk.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1302281/Amazing-sculptures-carved-fruit.html#socialLinks

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Potato Yogurt Soupy Curry (Matah Ke Aaloo)

Enjoy this comfort food.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 Russet potatoes – pierce, microwave for 8 – 10 min, peel and  cut small cubes
  • 1/2 cup yogurt
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro – mince
  • 1 stem curry leaves – ribbon cut or use as whole
  • 4 cups water

Fresh blend:

  • Blend in a small food processor 1 large piece ginger, 1/4″ piece of fresh turmeric, 1 green chile and 1 garlic clove – peel skin and chop so that it blends nicely

Seasoning:

  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp whole black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp asafoetida/hing
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chile powder or to taste
  • 1 1/4 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp fennel powder
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp rasam powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

PREPARATION:

  • Temper cumin, black pepper, curry leaves and asafoetida in hot oil, reduce heat and add fresh blend.
  • (One way to temper without burning the seasoning is to heat oil and then turn off and immediately put all that is require to bloom. Turn back on the heat to low and increase accordingly.)
  • Then add and saute the rest of the seasoning (except garam masala) and the potatoes for 3 min. Cook on low to sear the potatoes, then increase heat and add 2 cups of water. When it starts to form a thick mushy consistency reduce heat and add yogurt. Stir for few min and add the rest of the water and garam masala. Simmer to a boil.
  • It tends to thicken, so add water, Bulgarian buttermilk and salt accordingly.
  • Garnish with lots of cilantro.
  • Enjoy with puris, toasted sour dough bread, naan, flat, pita bread, etc.

*NOTE:

  • Fingerling potatoes lightly scraped, boiled and broken with hand are also made using this recipe. Only the liquid is more clearer and not so heavy.

Quince (Fruit) Pie

Quince grows in abundance in the areas of the Caspian Sea and Black Sea. Like the apple and guava it produces a natural pectin when cooked in vinegar and honey, ideal for jelling. Quince preserves are available in specialty stores.

Cheers to the quince pie – it was a hit and my family loved it. I didn’t have to go far to purchase quince as the trees in my backyard are loaded with the fruit!

INGREDIENTS:

Pie crust:

  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour – maida (1/2 to 3/4 cup more required if decorative fold desired around the edges) – 2 1/4 cups for crust, top and bottom (full cover or weaved lattice cover) is sufficient
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter cubed and little more small pieces/dots over the filling
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup ice cold water

Filling:

  • 6 medium quince – core and thinly slice with skin – toss with lemon juice, rind and honey
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup berries – blue, black, rasp, straw (eye ball it and your choice of berries)
  • 1 tbsp dried cranberries
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar (use 1/2 cup brown and white sugar if less sweetness is desired)
  • 3/4 cup white powdered sugar
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar (turbinado) to sprinkle and caramelize on top of crust
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup all-purpose flour (for thicker consistency add more flour between the range given)
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg powder
  • 1/8 tsp allspice

Garnishing:

  • Toasted walnuts, pomegranate and chocolate ganache
  • Or top it with whipping cream or your favorite ice cream.

PREPARATION:

-Preheat oven 375*F.

Pie crust:

  • Add oil and salt to the sifted flour- mix evenly with hand. Work the cubed butter into the flour quickly to make it crumbly, before the butter becomes soft. Then add ice water, little at a time, to make the mix like dough. Don’t over work it.
  • Divide the dough into 2 and shape each into a disk – bottom crust disk is bigger than the top one. Saran wrap and put in the fridge for about twenty min.

Filling:

  • Mix flour, all sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice evenly. Fold in the quince mixture, cranberries and fresh berries.
  • Spray with oil or butter 9″ pie dish.
  • On a floured surface roll both disks into 10 to 11 inch circle. For some it may be easier to roll between plastic wrap.
  • Line the bigger circle on the oiled pie dish by rolling it on the rolling pin and transferring it to the dish. Gently press to take the shape of the pie dish.
  • Mound the quince mixture into the pie dish and dot it with butter.
  • Cover the pie with the other circle and fold the over hangings around the edges.
  • Make slits in around the pie and a hole in the center.
  • Spray oil and sprinkle sugar on top of the crust.
  • Cover the edges with foil for the first 25 min.
  • Place on the center rack and bake pie for 50 min at 375*F. Slice pie after 15 min cool down.

*Note:

  • Next time try it with basil (ribbon cut) in the filling.
  • Add sugar in the crust, then use less in the filling.
  • Vegan option – Can use 1/2 to 3/4 cup olive oil, 1/4 tsp baking soda to make the dough.

HEALTHY MINESTRONE SOUP

Enjoy the balance of mixed flavors in this wholesome and healthy vegetable soup.

INGREDIENTS:

1/4 cup red lentils (no skin – masoor daal)

1 cup spinach pasta (any shape) – cook separately in boiling water with 1/8 tsp salt for about 10 min and drain.

Veggies – broad green beans, carrot, celery, zucchini, yellow squash, cauliflower, potato or taro (arbi), corn, green soy beans, garbanzo, kidney, white and brown fava beans. Use 5 types of veggies and  3 types of beans if all is not available.

5 cups veggies – cube (microwave covered in 1 cup of water for 4 to 5 min)

2 cups canned or frozen beans – garbanzo/ kidney/ white (if frozen – microwave with the veggies)

1 cup medium firm tofu – cube (optional)

1 can stewed tomatoes – blend coarsely

2 tbsp tomato paste

1 small can V-8

1 garlic clove – mince

1/4 tsp garlic salt

salt and black lemon pepper to taste

1 tbsp olive oil

3/4 tsp Italian seasoning blend – can use fresh herbs – basil/oregano, etc

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp Sambar powder

PREPARATION:

Wash and cook lentils for 5 to 7 minutes in 1 1/2 cup of water on medium heat.

Add veggies, stewed tomatoes, paste, V-8, tofu, beans and both salts. Add water and simmer on medium heat for 10 to 15 minutes.

In a small sauce pan saute garlic in oil until golden, turn off heat and add the rest of the seasoning/masala. Transfer it to the simmering soup. Cook for few min more.

Add pasta to each bowl when it’s time to serve. I cook the pasta with soup mixture only when we eat it immediately as it does become mushy and tends to break.

Serve hot! Top it with Tobasco or Parmesan or enjoy the soup as is to reduce the extra intake of calories.

Toor Daal, White Bean and Spinach Soup

This soup goes by it self without bread or rice. I usually top it  with a scoop of cottage cheese.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup Toor Daal
  • 1 can washed white bean or 1/2 cup soaked white beans overnight
  • 1 can cut tomatoes coarsely blended
  • 1/3 to 1/2  Costco spinach chopped
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tsp sea salt or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric

BLENDED SPICES:

  • 1/3 tsp cumin, 2 or 3 whole dried red chile, 1/4  tsp whole black pepper, 1 small stick of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp chana daal, 1/2 tsp urad daal, 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds, 1 tsp coriander seeds  and 1 stem curry leaves.
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 3/4 tbsp tamarind pulp or 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds and 1/4 tsp asafoetida
  • 1 clove minced garlic optional

PREPARATION:

Cook  toor daal and soaked beans in 4 cups of water in pressure cooker until soft. Add  tomatoes, spinach, tomato paste, turmeric, salt and the blended mix. Simmer for 10 to 15 min on medium heat.

Blended mix-

Heat 1 1/2 tbsp of oil on medium heat add cumin, chana, urad, black pepper, red chile,coriander, cinnamon,  fenugreek and curry leaves until golden. Do not burn! Cool and blend with coconut milk, tamarind pulp and 1/8 tsp raw mustard seeds.

Add water if required to make a medium consistency. Lastly, temper  mustard and asafoetida (hing)  in 1 tsp of clarified butter and mix it in the thick soup.

Radiatori Pasta

Sometimes my family needs a break from Indian cooking and pasta can never go wrong… fast, easy and tasty!

Ingredients:

  • 500g (17.6 oz) of Radiatori pasta or any shaped pasta – follow instructions on the package, don’t over cook!
  • 3 cups of cherry tomatoes cut in halves
  • 2 cups of canned olives cut in halves
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 lb., 8 0z (861g) of fresh mozzarella cubed
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/4 red or white onion chopped
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/2 tsp chili flakes
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • sea salt to taste
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 cup of sun dried tomatoes julienne cut
  • 1/4 cup of pesto sauce
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 to 3 stems of fresh basil

Preparation:

Cooking Pasta: Drop Radiatori pasta in boiling water and cook for 15-20 minutes. Then strain water and set the cooked Radiatori aside.

Adding Fresh Pasta Sauce: Heat olive oil on medium heat,  add butter then onion and garlic until golden. Followed by sun dried tomatoes and pesto sauce; red chili and black pepper; Italian seasoning and both salts. Add the cooked Radiatori and stir evenly then add the 2 cheeses and olive halves. Stir for few minutes. Turn of heat and add the cherry tomatoes and basil. Serve!

Chatpata Aloo Paratha (Potato)

Aloo Paratha is one of the most popular dishes made in North and central India. It is a paratha stuffed with potatoes which is cooked on a hot skillet and smothered with ghee (butter) if you feel like you could use the extra calories (an excellent choice for all the ravenous pregnant women). Ready for a quick hot meal that goes excellent with yogurt and Indian pickles?

Ingredients:

4 large Idaho, Russet or Yukon yellow potatoes – pierce and microwave for ~ 20 min or boil in water. Don’t overcook. Grate the potatoes so no lumps are there.

Fresh blend–1 big piece ginger ~ 2″ to 3″, 1 small piece turmeric ~ 1/2″  to 1″, 4 to 5 red and green Thai chile, 1 medium size red onion, 1 bunch cilantro –  coarse chop and place in the food processor except onion until last and use pulse button.

Masala:

  • 1/2  tsp cayenne powder
  • 1/3 tsp asafoetida
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp MTR garam masala
  • 1 1/2 tsp pomegranate powder or mango powder (aamchur) or both
  • 1 tsp fennel powder
  • 1/2 tsp sambar powder
  • 2 tsp sea salt–salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper powder optional

Preparation for filling:

Add all the masala and fresh blend in the grated potatoes. Mix and make large size balls.

Preparation for dough:

4 cups of whole wheat flour, 1/4 tsp salt,  pinch of asafoetida and 1/8 tsp red pepper powder–make soft dough by adding water little at a time so it is easy to spread. It’s okay to over work the dough. Cover with a towel for 10 minutes before making the parathas.

Oil hands and make a small ball – flatten and roll. Oil it, put potato ball on top, cover and close dough. Use all purpose flour to spread the paratha thin or thick and remove extra flour before shallow frying on both sides. Your choice to make it soft or crispy. My family gives their request a day before.  Enjoy with pickles, mint yogurt, and chutneys or even melted grated Mexican cheese blend.

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