Showing posts with label Bread. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bread. Show all posts

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Pesto Braided Bread

Yum
Spicy pesto bread - soft bread with delicious flavors. It’s vegan too. 




I am not an avid baker to say the least - most times I get a bit intimidated by the recipe. There are a lot of things left to fate when you are baking bread :) When I saw this recipe on Pinterest I was super excited with the simplicity of it. But…. I messed up. The yeast in the recipe was ‘active dry yeast’ and it is supposed to be activated in warm water with a tsp of sugar. Well, I do not know what I did …but the dough was flat. One hour…nothing happens, two…nothing,  it took me a little more than two hours to realize it’s not going anywhere.  I did mention I was a bread dummy. My Fb friends passed a verdict that I had killed the yeast, as the water was too hot. Yikes! Teen recommended that I chuck the ‘active dry yeast’ and use ‘platinum yeast’ (it does not need activation) instead and she was not willing to give me any guarantee. All she said was it has worked for me every time. She bakes a lot more than I do. So I took her word for it. I starred over, It did work life a breeze, thanks to teen.

As far as pesto was concerned, I was going with mint and garlic. I wanted Indian masala flavors and the pesto in the bread did not disappoint me. Rachel has used a basil pesto in the original recipe. So if you guys prefer that - here is the link to the recipe. I have used the recipe from her blog with a different pesto sauce. 

Between the bread dough disaster and my AC getting serviced, I had to go drop teen. So with everything going on, am surprised, I managed to take a few pictures. Minimum styling, I was really looking forward to a nicely styled shot. It gives me reason enough to bake another bread and style it with what I had in mind. 
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Friday, April 10, 2015

Rava dosa from broken wheat.

Crunchy, crisp and flavorful, it melts in your mouth. Savory crepes or dosa made from broken wheat and rice. 
Vegetarian Rava dosa, easy healthy recipe

Pour some oil, heat the griddle and sprinkle some water on the hot griddle - perfect surface for dosas. 

Vegetarian Rava dosa, easy healthy recipe


Vegetarian Rava dosa, easy healthy recipe

Soaking in the sun is probably my recipe for nourishment of my soul ....
As a child, youth and now an adult, warming my ever so cold feet to the warmth of the sun is soul filling. It’s so strange, loft philosophy, esoteric art, poetry,   does not touch my soul like the light from the sun, playing hide and seek in the forest, glittering streams of waterdeep blue skies, the smell of freshly cut grass and buzzing of the bees. I am so ready to welcome spring with my arms wide open. 

This has been a good year so far in terms of the blog and photography. I am digging the creative journey.  I am not pushing myself, I am not sure if this is a good thing but it’s making me creatively more aware. I spend a lot of time wandering around trails and waiting for spring to sprout. I watch the rain pour down on my window and enjoy the water drops slipping on the glass and trickling down. The dark rainy April evenings followed by bright blue skies the next day…it’s all so beautiful. Sometimes, I consciously make an effort not to cary my camera, so I can soak the moment. Hopefully to carry that energy back to my kitchen to create something on my gas stove or with my camera and if I am lucky both.

I shared ‘A life of Spice’ with Andrew Scrivani (you guys know I am a HUGE fan of his work) and here is what he had to say. I am absolutely ecstatic and literally dancing …


It is clear that Simi's influences, both cultural and artistic shine though her photographs. The richness of color, the dynamic range of light to dark and the recognition of the beauty and simplicity of her subject matter speak to her artistry. Her work embodies the less is more mantra. 

-Andrew Scrivani 

Kimberly - The Hungry Goddess and Sara  invited me over for a podcast. It’s an informal chat about food photography, and we girls had a blast, if you want to listen to the recording click here. I share few tips on food photography. We are planning to do another podcast on spices - stay tuned. Thank you so much Kimberly and Sara for having me over.

This is a picture heavy post, I really got carried away…

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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Homemade pita bread with spicy panner

#PitaBread #TandoorPaneerPitaBread #Recipe #SimiJoisPhotography

#PitaBread #TandoorPaneerPitaBread #Recipe #SimiJoisPhotography

I just cannot believe that it has more than a week since I blogged. Time seems to be slipping through my fingers like sand. Last week was rather hectic with back to back photography assignments. It was fun, but when you are cooking, styling and photography all in one, it becomes rather taxing. I really love the process, but I tend to overdo it by obsessing about the smallest details. And let’s not even start talking about the clean up….there was a time when, I would clean while cooking, so clean up was not a stressful chore. I remember all my spices and daals, well almost all the ingredients in my kitchen were labeled and neatly stacked. If you see me working now, seriously, it is not the same person, you will see stuff on every inch of the counter space and strangely I am more productive than I ever was. It started as a one off thing and over the months it has become a habit. Its something I need to address this year. Will see how that goes ;)

It has been a while since teen has been asking me to bake pita at home. I sincerely thought it was a long drawn process and was keeping the baking  for a relaxed weekend. This bread is so easy that I feel rather stupid waiting for a weekend to bake this. This is THE quickest bread I have ever made and I just love the soft fluffy texture. I can eat this without filling, just with hummus. If you are looking for a hummus recipe, click here.


#PitaBread #TandoorPaneerPitaBread #Recipe #SimiJoisPhotography

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Friday, January 9, 2015

Homemade pizza crust

#PizzaCrust #HomeMade #EasyPizza #SimiJoisPhotography

#PizzaCrust #HomeMade #EasyPizza #SimiJoisPhotography

#PizzaCrust #HomeMade #EasyPizza #SimiJoisPhotography

This week has been exceptionally cold, if you are following me on Facebook  I am sure you have heard me rant about the brutal cold. I did accomplish a lot this week and am surprised at myself, finally I cleaned up all my folders and millions of photographers that I keep taking. It was a mammoth task and at the end of it I look like a raccoon, staring at the computer screen for so long. I feel like a zombie! Am so glad my teen baked a pizza and I took a break from all the filing work to go and take a few pictures. I was so relieved to go and do something creative.

The pizza break was even better, loved the pizza bread and all that cheesy goodness. It was the best homemade pizza ever the pizza bread is to die for. Teen wanted to bake this during her winter break but then we were to loaded with food and gave ourselves a break. Am glad she had an extended break and we got to eat this.

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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Cheesy Garlicky Pull Apart Bread

#CheesyGarlicPullApartBread #PullApartBread #GarlicBread #SimiJoisPhotography

#CheesyGarlicPullApartBread #PullApartBread #GarlicBread #SimiJoisPhotography
I can’t believe it is going to be Christmas even tomorrow. I have be working on getting the house in order and baking some cookies while sipping some mulled wine. With all that work and prep, we wanted to have something light for dinner so I decided to make some soup with some ready bread and olive oil, trying to save some extra calories to munch and overload the next few days. Teen wanted to bake some cheesy garlic bread that she had pinned  for a while, every time she wanted to bake this, I said next time. I wonder why we did not bake this earlier, ( am sure teen is going to say, I told you so) this is sinful, absolutely sinful, loved every cheesy garlicky bite. So much for a low cal dinner :) well it is that time of the year. Am glad teen baked it, loved the flavors and can’t wait to try different variations.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas, hope you have a wonderful holiday season. Am looking forward to a wonderful 2015 and wish you guys the same.

#CheesyGarlicPullApartBread #PullApartBread #GarlicBread #SimiJoisPhotography

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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Indian Flat Bread - Kulcha


#IndianFlatBread, #FlatBread, #Kulcha, #Recipe #SimiJoisPhotography



The smell of fresh flour roasting in ghee on a cast-iron hot griddle is a childhood memory. I remember my mother sitting by the tele, kneading the dough and dad asking her what was the sabji/curry to go with the bread. These memories stir a strange kind of emotion in me. A part of me thankful to be born in a household where fresh food was the norm. On the other side my heart becomes nostalgic from memories of my childhood. Those were some of the most beautiful days of my life, went by too quickly.  My mother always made fresh flat bread every day and it was quite the norm when we were growing up. It still is in many Indian homes , I am glad as there is nothing better than fresh kulcha, parathas, naans or rotis from the griddle. I wish I had a count of how many I have eaten in my life time: am sure then run into hundreds. In Indian culture we never count when we eat, and now that I think of it, we do not have obesity as a burning issue in India.  Counting calories and watching what you eat, does it really help or is it more about fresh, pure, seasonal and home made? Something to think about. Am no expert, but somewhere I do believe it is not the amount or the calories, cook with love, sit together with family and enjoy what you eat, it truly fills you up in every aspect. After all life is just once and if you live it well once is enough.

 Oh! how I digress, from memories to calories to enjoying food at the table…

 Sophia, Ilva and me got together and thought about doing a post on ‘breads’ , something close to our heart.  I am the last to post, thanks to time zone. Here is Sophia’s daily bread and Ilva’s childhood story about bread.  I just loved the stories these girls have narrated and loved the photography even more.


It might get confusing with all the talk about Indian flat bread, so here is a little description of each kind.

Roti : A flat bread made of wheat flour and no stuffing. It is the everyday Indian bread. It could be made in a tandoor ( clay oven) or the gas stove.

Pulka : A softer and thinner version of the roti, it is rolled much thinner and is almost always made on stove top. Indian everyday flat bread.

Paratha : It is a stuffed roti. Stuffed with potatoes, paneer, nuts, beets, greens, peas, a lot of varieties. It is roasted in ghee.

Naan : is made from refined wheat flour : all purpose and is originally made in the tandoor,  you can also make it on the gas stove.

Kulcha : Is a stuffed nan, again it is made in a tandoor but can be also made on the gas stove like above.

Rumali rotti : Is a huge extremely think roti and is v v v soft and folds like a handkerchief, rumal in hindi means a handkerchief.

Puri : is made from whole wheat flour and is smaller than roti and a good puri is always fluffy. Could be flavored or plain

Kachori : is a stuffed puri

Bhature: is made from all purpose flour and is deep fried, it is almost always served with choley.

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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Christmas Roundup



It’s just that time of the year, where I can’t help but look back. What a year it’s been! There is so many different things I have tried this year, I surprise myself. I’ve made so many new contacts that have blossomed into friendship. I feel that I’m very lucky to be surrounded by such talented and helpful people. There is so much to learn and people are willing to hand-hold and teach you — it’s an amazing world we live in.  I am part of a few groups (photography and blogging), I also moderate a few of them, so if you guys are interested just message me on Facebook (my personal account or the blog page) or on google plus, and I will be more than happy to add you. It’s a great learning experience to be attached to these communities.  

What are your plans for the holidays — what’s on your menu?   Growing up we did celebrate Xmas but there was never a traditional meal. My mother would always bake a fruit and nut cake and there would be marvelous food that would vary every year. In some ways I have followed the same tradition, it is always something special, but not anything predetermined. I remember biking on cold and foggy December mornings, just before Christmas, visiting one of my teachers, just to eat her rum cake. The doors of her home would always be open, kids would pour in with flowers, cookies ’n cake and in turn she would give us  a generous helping of the most delicious rum cake. The taste still lingers, mingling with the faint smell of a bonfire, and feeling of the wind against me as I rode my bike through the curvy roads of Dehradun. Now it all seems like a distant dream. 

Alright, so I’m snapping out of this nostalgia. Phew! Back into the present with coffee, and that usually helps. Back into the sweet world of desserts. Even though I’ve never confessed it, I do have a sweet tooth and while planning the menu, I often plan the dessert first :) So here is my line up of a few of my favorites; I hope I have inspired you to bake one of these for the holidays. Do let me know if you did!  Merry Christmas to all of you. 

P.S. I still need grammar lessons, so if any one of you is willing to hand-hold me on that, I assure you some good food and we can start from there :) 


Ginger caramel tiramisu 
#EasyTiramisu #GingerHolidayTiramisu
You can top it two ways, cinnamon and caramel with  candied ginger bits inside or just candied ginger and caramel. No baking, just assembly! Can it get easier than this :) Here is the link.

Orange spice cake with candied oranges 
#OrangeSpiceCake #FruitCake #HolidayCake
If you are someone who enjoys fruit in their desserts you may want to click here.

Ginger Bread 
#gingerbread #spicybread #Festivebread #Christmasdessert #OldfashionedGingerBread

The gingerbread from my previous post is a classic. But if you want something dramatic and still stick with the ginger cake, David Lebovitz’s ginger cake is the right one for you.

Ginger cake

One of my favorites and a stunning piece of work is the Battenburg. It’s worth all the time you spend in the kitchen. I shall say no more. Click here. 

Battenburg cake 

If cake is not your thing and you prefer you have some more options here…

Coffee Panna Cotta 
#CoffeePannaCotta #PannaCotta #CreamyPannaCotta

Creamy rich coffee panna cotta,  with a wiped cream topping and some home made sugar art, can be made ahead of time and looks like you spend the whole day in the kitchen ;)

Pots de Crème is my all time favorite, I remember the first time we made it, we were licking the bowl ( actually every time)


Cookie exchange ? Here is my line up …
#ChristmasCookies #CookieOptions #CookieExchange
Hope you guys have a fantabulous holiday! Hugs!!


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Friday, December 13, 2013

Old Fashioned Gingerbread

#GingerBread #OldFashionedGingerBread #QuickAndEasyGingerBread

#GingerBread #OldFashionedGingerBread #QuickAndEasyGingerBread
Super easy and packed with flavor is written all over this bread. Actually it’s more like a cake. It is not like the conventional bread, it’s a bread disguised as a cake. Not every dessert lives up to this reputation.  I still remember my last year’s soufflé  that fell apart. My nephew was visiting and he has quite a sweet tooth to say the least and you know ‘finally teen’ can live on dessert and honey, that might have been reason enough to try a new dessert, but it was also the holidays, so there was more than one reason to indulge. We were excited anticipating a French delicacy. I don’t know what went wrong, we had such terrible soufflé, it was probably, not probably but surely the worse thing I have ever made. So much so that even the name soufflé evokes very strong emotions lol! But fear not am not going to be baking an exotic delicacy, am going to stick to SIMPLE. This old fashioned gingerbread is easy and most of the ingredients are already in your pantry…almost as good as mix and bake. If you are going to go and buy the boxed ready version of this am going to personally come over and make you bake this… ! With a cup of coffee or mulled wine it is d e v i n e.  I did not just tell you that I made a meal out of this (sheepishly) 
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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

James Beard's Persimmon Bread

#James Beard’s Persimmon Bread #Persimmon bread #MoistFruitBRead

#James Beard’s Persimmon Bread #persimmonBread #FruitBread

#James Beard’s Persimmon Bread #Bread #Persimmon #FruitBread #PersimmonBread

A recipe by James Beard, on David Labovitz blog is something! No joke! A decade ago, I did not know what a persimmon was, I almost mistook it for an exotic tomato. (don't judge me people I was born in a tropical country) Thanks to finally teen's piano teacher, who introduced me to the world of persimmon. I was certainly missing something, it is one of my favorite fruits now.

Last week I got a lot of persimmon home, if am not mistaken I think it is the Fuyu and unlike the Hachiya, it can be eaten when firm.  I wanted to bake a dessert with persimmon and after going back and forth with cake, pudding, bars and bread, I found this recipe. As most of you will know I am a big fan of David, and it's a James Beard recipe. Duh! There was really nothing to think…I had all the ingredients, the outcome was amazing. we had it with coffee, we had it with mulled wine and we had it with maple syrup and crushed cloves. I did not change anything in the recipe. The amazing part of the recipe is that James Beard does not mention the exact amount of sugar for this recipe. David's suggestion, "Although I recommend using the higher amount of sugar, feel free to use whichever quantity you’d like…after all, you have permission from the granddaddy of all cooks, James Beard himself." I did not want to risk messing up with this recipe so I took exactly the same amount as David Lebovitz. 

I really need to thank all of you for an amazing year, I think this has been the best year of blogging so far. Thank you for reading what I write and thank you for all the love and encouragement. Happy Thanksgiving to all of you! 

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Monday, September 16, 2013

Kale and fruit juice blend


We are back to a Monday! Is it me or the pace of time just got faster.  I really wish I could hold on to time, I am impatient to do so much and am always behind. A lot of last week was spent on a liberating exercise of rejuvenating my creative energy. I absolutely enjoyed reading an e-book Sharp Shooter by Martin Bailey, am amazing photographer. I must confess that at one time I did coil myself into a mess of numbers. The science behind razor sharp images. Thanks to my better half, I did uncoil myself to some extent. Am, not really done with the book and have a couple of pages left, and may have to re-read portions. I like books that challenge me and this one certainly did.  I am compiling a list of my favorite bloggers/photographers, so a lot of time was spent, going around blogs and photography sites. If you guys have any recommendations, that would be awesome. There is so much talent and inspiration out there, it is just an amazing world. I feel so energized, you can see the halo of creativity around me. LOL! Some of these artist are just amazing and absolutely mind blowing work.Do you guys want me to share the list ? Should I do it in a post or just the side-bar of TNS.

These photographs are from my archives, but. The morning sun was so beautiful and I was having my kale and fruit juice blend, I was itching to use the camera and I did :). I love the play of light in the photograph, if I may say so myself. Had to share it today and not have it sit in the archives. Am also going to work on a dessert after I am done posting this. Can't wait to create it and then style it, have so many ideas, either am going to overwhelm myself and mess it up or its going to be a liberating exercise. Let's see how that goes :))

Thank you for all the great comments on last week's post . Am so glad that you guys actually read what I write and encourage me to prattle more ;-).

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Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Spelt Flour and Lentil Paratha/Flat Bread


Spicy, savory, aromatic and soul filling. You cannot complain if it is healthy too. Flat bread or rotis and parathas are my all time favorite. Am not really a rice eater, I prefer bread/ roti/naan/ paratha to rice, any day. Coming from a person who is from the south of India, this is unusual. Brought up in the north of the country, my palette is heavily influenced by the northern cuisine. But, I cannot give up my dosa, similarly, I cannot give up on parathas or rotis.  A dollop of ghee, is a perfect accompaniment.  I keep trying out different recipes of parathas and have never been really disappointed. Among all the wild and not so wild experiments in my kitchen, this one is a favorite. Here to stay, repeated many times in the Jois household and each time getting better. It has the goodness of grains n lentils. A meal in itself, when served with some raita or daal. Simple, easy and great for week nights. 

I shared this recipe with a very good friend of mine and she asked me "what is spelt flour ?" I am sure most of you are aware of this wonder flour.  If not... Well, I really did not know that it is older than wheat and I do believe it is a distant cousin to wheat. Easier to digest, and lesser gluten, so can still be substituted for wheat in baking, it needs a little more kneading for the gluten to get working than wheat. Also, a better nutritional profile.  Am not a nutritionist, this is just from my reading. Forget about the nutritional profile, am telling the taste profile is awesome, I could tell it is a bit nuttier than wheat, needs less water to kneed into a dough and is absolutely great tasting. So am not complaining ! 
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Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Masala Bun / Spicy dinner rolls

It has been a week, for some reason I feel its been a long time since I did a post. Last week, was the week of spring break (for finally teen), so we were doing a little exploring both inside the kitchen and outside. March was a hectic month, so the break was really a welcome change. It's not been easy to go back to routine...I miss having finally teen home for the day and definitely miss sleeping in. The weather got a is getting a little warmed up ( is it ?) and I can resume my late morning walks, something I really miss during the long months of hibernation. It's amazing that last year at this time we had cherry blossom blooms and the trees were beginning to get visibly green...right now I see no signs of any blooms or green, my tulips have not even sprouted. Finally teen was going thru my blog and she showed me pictures of blooms from last year. Here is this post, and coincidently the recipe is very similar too. I think I should go out and capture the cherry blossom tree....and get myself a cup of coffee. I am going to be right back.... Am back with some coffee, an apple and armed with evidence on my camera.....and here it is. The middle picture in the top row is this year ( right now) and the rest are all from last year (April 3rd). Hmmm! I really need to complain someplace for the inconsistency :( in weather patterns....well, it's nature and a lot like life it is full of surprises. Sometimes good and sometimes things that we just have to deal with. Am glad am dealing with some soft and spicy masala buns or dinner rolls....
Don't these look gorgeous, they are perfect with a cup of coffee and it was not really an apple but half masala bun that I have here. Hey ! it's all about real time and it does not get more real then this :))
So I stuffed these cuties with two different stuffings, one a paneer-potato with garam masala, with a hint of garlic and the other with a potato-onion subji prepared in a south Indian style. When I asked finally teen and my other half there preference, they said both were very different and it's hard to pick. I personally loved the paneer one and even thou we could not reach a consensus on which was better, we all agreed it was an awesome recipe here to stay.

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Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year

Well, 2012 has been a year full of surprises! It's been quite a year, with both its ups and downs. Looking back, it has been a year of tremendous learning and growth - I've connected with some amazing people and made some good friends, thanks to Facebook and the blogging community. I've absolutely loved being a part of The Daring Bakers, The Daily Meal, and some exciting blog events - I've enjoyed working on the challenges, recipe reviews, and the traditional exchange sponsored by Kikkoman - the slideshow is on my Facebook page. I must confess, am no social network snob and love connecting on Facebook and other social media - nah ! not addicted ;) I am looking forward to a great 2013, with some exciting work and a lot of learning! Thanks for all of the support, guys - from the tech support with my endless FB questions to the feedback, recipe help, encouragement and appreciation!!

These are some of my favorite posts!! It was really hard to pick just a handful - I love everything I cook - but I somehow managed!!! Cheers to 2013, everyone - a year filled with lots more on our plates.




Masala bread   
Fruit chai 
Battenburg cake 
Filled pate a choux swan 
Tamarind rice 
Apricot curry  Print Friendly and PDF

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Pumpkin and fenugreek flatbread/Paratha with pomegranate in yogurt raita


Parathas always take me back in time, when I lived in Delhi. Anyone who has ever lived or visited Delhi will know about the famous 'Gali paranthe Wali' or ' Parathe Wali Gali' in Chandni  chowk. The world's best place for stuffed Indian flat bread...hands down! I don't think there is any other place that can be a close contender.  I do not recommend you to peak into the kitchen...lol don't ask why ! But you got to eat there with your eyes focusing on just the food, not the kitchen....and yes if you do have a sensitive digestive system....let's say your palette will thank you but I don't guarantee anything else. I have never had issues eating there, but you make your call.  Most of the stores only serve vegetarian parathas not even onion and garlic. Big history for a small narrow gali (lane) . Chandni chowk dates back to Shah Jahan era (1670), the first paratha shop in the gali was opened in 1870. Till date the parathas are shallow fried in pure ghee. Some of the recipes dates back to a century - that is what I have been told. You will find all kinds of filling - from cashew n almonds to the more common potatoes. I do recollect Anthony Bourdain feasting on some of the parathas @ CC, then again am not sure, maybe it was Rajasthan. Anyway Paratha gali is surely a haven for paratha lovers with some history .....

While this one is an original from my kitchen, I could not help but think about the paratha gali and different exotic parathas they serve there. Flaky, juicy and full of flavors.  The sweetness and mushiness of pumkin with the mild bitterness and crunchiness of fenugreek leaves and the spices makes this a perfect combination.  I went a little easy on the ghee, but if you don't believe in the philosophy of less is more....go for it!!It's worth the extra calorie :)) 
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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Banana Bread - Super Moist

Before I rattle on my daily musings - I really hope everyone on the east coast is safe ! It's amazing how we fret for small things....on the face of catastrophe like this everything seems so small. Am speechless at the amount of damage sandy has caused.  Praying for your safety ! 

"The words of the tongue should have three gatekeepers.
-Arab proverb

Before words get past the lips, the first gatekeeper asks, "“Is this true?"” That stops a lot of traffic immediately. But if the words get past the first gatekeeper, there is a second who asks, "Is it kind?" And for those words that qualify here too, the last gatekeeper asks, "“Is it necessary?" "
 
I wish there were gatekeepers to the amount we eat too, since we polished the whole loaf in a day.  Now all I have is guilt to show and some pixs! This one is an absolute winner ...you got to try it. Very very moist . At first,  "Finally Teen" made a face and when I threatened to give the bread away, she reluctantly tasted it - claiming banana bread was her LEAST favorite and questioning my judgment on  my choice of recipe for the day. Well, she was an important part in the mystery of the vanishing loaf, to say the least. ( raising brow)  So mission for the week - to actually go and buy over ripe banana and action replay over the weekend!  My other half was our partner in crime and equally responsible along with the two of us and we were short of licking the crumbs.....




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Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Empanadas Gallega - Daring Bakers Challenge, Sep 2012

 
 

 

Patri of the blog, Asi Son Los Cosas, was our September 2012 Daring Bakers’ hostess and she decided to tempt us with one of her family’s favorite recipes for Empanadas! We were given two dough recipes to choose from and encouraged to fill our Empanadas as creatively as we wished!

This week DBC, am really late -Thanks DB for the one week grace. No more delay, shall we go straight to the recipe then....


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Friday, July 6, 2012

The Vegi burger cook-off and grapefruit-cranberry-lemonade


Summer, grill and burgers are almost synonymous. OK, not synonymous, but you get the idea. It has been over a 100 degrees for the past couple of weeks here in  Midwestern USA. No matter how much we love summer and food, there was no way my other half was going to go outside and grill (well, neither was I). Now, it is a different story as to how he can go out  and fly his RC planes on even the hottest of days. But then again, neither was I in the mood to play the perfect sous chef, moving in and out the house. Mr other half loves to have things at arm's length when he is cooking and insists that I, as the sous chef, wait on him. You get the picture. It's just easier for me to do it! So, I got my cast iron grill pan out and no one was sweating!
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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Daring Baker's Challenge May 2012 -Challah - The Jewish bread



May’s Daring Bakers’ Challenge was pretty twisted – Ruth from The Crafts of Mommyhood challenged us to make challah! Using recipes from all over, and tips from “A Taste of Challah,” by Tamar Ansh, she encouraged us to bake beautifully braided breads.

I have been working on my biceps, triceps or what ever that is !! the first set of challah that i baked was quite hard, dense and a heavy loaf :(( now you know why I have been lifting weights, lol!! I did not know what else to do with the loaf but use them as weights. :))hehe!! After the disaster, I picked an easy recipe. Pati's easyChallah and as the name suggest, it was an easy recipe and lot of fun. While I was on the quest for a perfect recipe, I happened to come across the braided stuffed bread from - Dishes from my kitchen , I fell in love with her braided bread. Pavithra is one of my favorite blogger and I love Dishes from my kitchen. I took Pati's challah recipe recommended by Ruth and used Pavithra's ( dishes from my kitchen) stuffed braiding technique  and the result was amazing !! For the second loaf, I just baked a simple 3 strand braided bread. Loved both the loafs. It was a great breakfast hit for memorial day. Request for an action replay from the family confirms 5 stars :)) 




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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Masala Bread


I Think this is one of the most beautiful time of the year ......atleast in Midwest. the trees turning green, lush green manicured yards, cherry blossoms, daffodils and birds chirping happy songs. I love to have my tea outdoors, spring and fall are the only time of the year when the temperature is perfect for  a picnic, BBQ or just a cup of tea. Sunshine, a cool breeze and a beautiful day like today is just perfect to waste outdoor, just sitting and watching the world go by - we all need some 'me' time and this is the best treat I can give myself.


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Monday, November 7, 2011

Peter Reinhart's Buttermilk White Bread

It is amazing how almost two years ago when I started the blog, I would find it challenging to write. It was like writing to an empty space. Two years has changed so much ...I can rave and rant and most times I have to hold myself for the fear of overdoing it.  It sounds like a  cliché but  so true, blogging feels like you belong to a community - a community of friends with similar interest.

Now for my update on the week that went by  was........I have been working for a sketch for a while now and I finally got to finish it. Started a new book - The forty rules of love - it is two parallel stories woven into one - one contemporary and the other set in the 13th century. A wonderful story of love and spiritual longing. I met  up with some of my friends over a cup of coffee.  Finally got to bake buttermilk bread -  had bookmarked that in the last century sometime from Collaborative Curry. Collaborative curry is one of my favorite blogs, I love the photography and the clean look of the blog.   Here it is  -- buttemilk bread .




It is getting colder and I am looking fwd to more baking in the coming months. You can make either bread or dinner rolls. I added some dried funugreek, chili flakes and cumin seeds to the original recipe.


4¼ cups (19 ounces) unbleached bread flour
1½ teaspoons (.38 ounces) salt
3 tablespoons (1.5 ounces) sugar
2 teaspoons (.22 ounce) instant yeast
1 large (1.65 ounces) egg, slightly beaten, at room temperature
¼ cup (2 ounces) butter, margarine, or shortening, at room temperature, or vegetable oil
1½ cups (12 ounces) buttermilk or whole milk, at room temperature
1 egg, whisked with 1 teaspoon water until frothy, for egg wash (optional)
sesame or poppy seeds for garnish (optional)
4 tbsp fenugreek leaves (optional)
4 tbsp chili flakes (optional)
4 tbsp cumin seeds (optional)



Mix together the flour, salt, sugar, fenugreek leaves, chili flakes and cumin seeds and yeast in a  bowl. ( no you don't have to mix the yeast in warm milk )Pour in the egg, butter, add the buttermilk until all the flour is absorbed and the dough forms a ball. If the dough seems very stiff and dry add more buttermilk to make it supple.

 Sprinkle flour on the counter, transfer the dough to the counter, and begin kneading (or mix on medium speed with the dough hook), adding more flour, if necessary, to create a dough that is soft, supple, and tacky but not sticky. Continue kneadingfor 6 to 8 minutes. Coat it with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap.


 Ferment at room temperature for 1½ to 2 hours, or until the dough doubles in size.

 Remove the fermented dough from the bowl and divide it in half for sandwich loaves and the other half for dinner rolls. Mist the dough lightly with spray oil and cover with a towel or plastic wrap. Allow to rest for about 20 minutes. Mist the tops of the dough with spray oil and loosely cover with plastic wrap or a towel  for 60 to 90 minutes, or until it nearly doubles in size.

 Preheat the oven to 350° F for loaves or 400° F for roll and buns. Brush the rolls or buns with the egg wash and garnish with poppy or sesame seeds.  Bake the rolls or buns for approximately 15 minutes. Bake loaves for 35 to 45 minutes.



 When the loaves have finished baking, remove them immediately from the pans and cool on a wire rack for at least 1 hour before slicing or serving. Rolls should cool for at least 15 minutes on a rack before serving. Enjoy with breakfast, lunch or dinner....and yes the house smells sooo good :) Print Friendly and PDF

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