Showing posts with label Paneer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Paneer. Show all posts

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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Monday, March 11, 2013

Creative writing n some crunchy Jalapeño

In the last 2 weeks I have received a few emails about my writing style (good stuff). Hmmm! do I even have a style ? Am not sure, most times its rambling, sometimes ranting. Secretly I was very happy, and read the mails many times. Almost felt I had won the Oscars ! But the fact is,  I don't know how to write prose...I did write poems when I was in high school and one day I might even share one of them, i.e if I get brave. For sometime, I thought, no one reads what I write, they just ogle at the pictures and read the recipe...well am glad I am wrong. 

This whole conversation about writing, led me to start reading a bit about writing and all the talk about  'having a voice' specially in an age where there is so much noise and chatter.  Like you, I want to be heard and I don't want my voice  lost or engulfed in the noise. Nothing like being differentiated for quality of your content. 

That led me to think, is it all about the right brain being more imaginative  ... " Is writing an art that you can nurture or is it an acquired skill ?" 

So I asked some of my blogger/non-blogger friends what they thought about writing and specifically creative writing.  Here is what some of them had to say .... oh! before that, my thoughts " you are born with the talent and can nurture it to some extent"

Monica Bhide "Hey.. tough question. I teach people the technical side of writing and I think this helps them write better. But at the heart of it, writing is an art. And I don't think that can be taught. It comes from somewhere instead. It is the reason why you gravitate towards the writing of one writer versus another.
The technical skills can be taught and so perhaps you can teach someone to write but I don't think you can teach someone to be a writer.. if that makes sense. The art comes from within."

Dawn Legier - "Such a great question, Simi. I had to think about it for awhile. In my (uneducated) opinion, it depends on the type of writing. For creative writing, I would lean more toward art and natural ability that can be nurtured and improved; while I think technical writing (instructions, procedure manuals, etc.) can be taught. Does that make sense?"

Bart  Luczak - "In my opinion it's an inborn thing, of course you can acquire and learn how to write better with time, but for talented individuals it comes sort of naturally...well dunno just my humble opinion..."

Marc Hurwitz - "Good question: I believe that writing is both--much like music, you can get better at it with practice, but the really good writers have that certain innate gift, in my opinion.
Thanks for getting in touch about this!"

Sudha Rao
- "Interesting question.  ... When it comes to being creative, narrative and descriptive writing.. It's something one has it in their blood but can learn from different channels to hone the skill and improve the art of writing. The rest yes... You can acquire ... (it)"

Nivedita Sharma - "I guess it is a gift but you can hone and nurture it"
My findings -  creative art (writing) needs a seed and you are born with it and unless you nurture it, it does not go anywhere. Grammar is a big put off for many readers and thankfully I have grammar police at home and some of us do need to buy Wren and Martin. But...the catch, you might have the perfect grammar but boring content, no one is going to read it. Well seems obvious but apparently not ! Never over use your adjectives or your adverbs ....hmmm I think I have been guilty of using hmm over using ! Be conversational and don't have 8-10 posts in a is a turn off, (I did not know that). My thoughts now "you are born with it, but you hone most of it " If a few hours can give me this much insight and learning, imagine if I put some effort. Just be yourself, write with your heart not your head. And yes this is not the time for the philosophical question " who am I ?"I do hope this post will help some of us ( me included) get out of our shell and write/share more. For those of you blessed with the gift of the gab ( in this case the gift of the pen), do share with us some tips and secrets :)
Am tempted to post this without a recipe, but then I don't want you to tell me that I invited you over and had nothing more to offer than "words" So here is some baked jalapeño and tomatoes and don't, just don't forget to let me know your thoughts....not about the jalapeño ( I know it's good) ...about your thoughts on writing, For some reason if  you do not want to share it on the blog, email me - 
Thanks to all of you who responded to my question and took the effort in communicating your thoughts. 

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Frankie/kathi rolls

Mumbai has always had a special place in my heart, I have never lived there but spent a good chunk of my summer vacations in Mumbai - every year,as far back as I can remember.  My mother's family home was always filled with people, good food and the sound of chatter. We had so much to share,  there was never a dull moment . Despite the heat, we would always be outside, shopping or eating.  I don't think any one of us realized how hot it was, the cool evening breeze with the smell of the sea is something I can never forget and brings back great memories. Day or night - Mumbai streets are full of life - this one to the city - that never sleeps :) :)

Street food - bhel, pani puri, kachori, samosa...  you name it. The first time I tasted Frankie was in Mumbai and absolutely fell in love with this spicy roll.....since then must have consumed a few hundred dozen of them - still can't get enough.

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Friday, June 10, 2011

Tandoori Naan Pizza

The kids are off from school...yippee to a long FUN summer break!!!! Goodbye to schedules.. hello to a kitchen and pantry that will be open 24 hrs a day! Movie nights, play dates, picnics and " I am bored can I eat something" will occupy the next few weeks.  It is no coincidence that FUN and FOOD both spell with the same letter, and where I live @ breakfast we want to know what is for lunch and @ lunch we make dinner plans and at dinner.....we are too tired to think about anything but Zzz!! So in the spirit of summer fun ....we are now serving some spicy tandoori naan pizza and you are invited.

You will need :
4 naan
1 bell pepper finely chopped
1 small onion finely chopped
1/4 cup paneer finely chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped pineapple (optional)
12 tbsp pasta sauce of your choice
1 tbs olive oil
salt to taste
2 tsp tandoori masala
couple of handfuls of pizza three-cheese blend (shredded)
Brush on some olive oil on the naan, spread 3 tbsp pasta sauce on it, sprinkle some tandoori masala on it, get creative with all the toppings...add the cheese and sprinkle some more tandoori masala on it along with some salt. Bake for 10-12 min @ 350 F. Serve with your favorite drink. We had some mango lemonade and it went very well with the the Indian inspired pizza.
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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Home Made - Masala Paneer

Paneer has always been a family favorite. For those who are wondering what I am talking about:  paneer is a fresh cheese common in Indian and South Asian cuisine. It is made by adding acid to hot milk thus separating the curd from the whey. Unlike most cheese, paneer does not require enzyme treatment.  In cheese the milk is curdled by adding acids such as vinegar or lemon juice - just like paneer, then the addition of rennet completes the curdling. Rennet is an animal extract. Most traditional cheese is made from animal rennet however there are some vegetarian cheese made from either fungal or bacterial source i.e.  Microbial rennet. For vegetarians paneer is a good alternative for cheese. Unlike cheese, paneer has a short shelf life and aged paneer is definitely not a delicacy. ;-)

Boil the milk in a thick-bottomed sauce pan. Once the milk starts to boil, reduce the heat and add the juice of a lime, stirring continuously.In few minutes, you see small curdy white clouds floating on top. . This process takes few minutes, so wait at least 7-10 minutes. Stir and switch of the heat and let it stand for a bit - 5 min. Then pour the whole thing  into a sieve, over a sink. Thus gathering the curd and discarding the whey. Cover the sieve with a plate and some weight on it, so it discards the excess whey.

Remove the dry paneer and add 1 tbsp cumin, 2 tsp garam masala, 1/2 tsp turmeric, 2 tsp red chili powder. Mix well like a dough and pat it into a thin edge plate/vessel. Refrigerate for 3-4 hrs. After 3-4 hrs bring out and cut into slices and freeze. Masala panner is ready for your favorite dishes. Masala paneer is great for paneer tikka masala.

Spring is in the air...nothing like a weekend with friends and sunshine and get that grill out for some nice paneer tikka masala.
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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Paneer Kofta

The last week has been quite on the blog but not so quite on other fronts. For one it was the week of spring break and the week of  ICC- world cup...!! first the anticipations of the semi-finals and finals then the nail biting matches...followed by the celebrations and the euphoria. Early mornings, endless supply of chai, screaming and clapping, multiple breakfasts, lunch and a wonderful time with family and friends. It was a great spring break...can't ask for more!! Team India rocks !!

Today's special is - paneer kofta. It goes great with saffron rice or some hot naan. Love the flavors of the curry...hope u enjoy it as much as we did ....

For the paneer kofta:

1 cup - home made paneer (coming soon on the blog)
3/4 cup - boiled mashed potatoes
1/2 tsp - cumin seed
1/2 tsp - red chili powder.
small bunch cilantro finely chopped
1/4 tsp turmeric
salt to taste

Mash the paneer with the boiled potatoes and mix all the ingredients. Roll with a light hand into round shapes and deep fry. Keep aside.

For the curry :

1 onion
1 tomato
1-2 green chilli
1/2 inch ginger root
2 tsp garam masala
1/4 th tsp turmeric
salt to taste
1-2tbsp cream or 2-3 tbsp half n half
2 tbsp cashew paste ( soak 2 tbsp cashew nut in water for 3-4 hrs, grind into fine paste)
handful of blanched almonds
cilantro for garnish

Wet grind onion, tomato, ginger and green chili into fine paste. In a pan heat oil and add the onion-tomato paste and roast till it leaves oil, add the garam masala, turmeric, salt, cashew paste and some water bring to boil. add the cream and the fried kofta. 

Garnish with blanched almonds and cilantro serve hot with some butter naan and you have a best seller on your hands :) enjoy!! Print Friendly and PDF

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