Thursday, December 27, 2007

My Christmas goodies and Seven Cup sweet

This year Christmas was extra special for more than one reason. It's the first one after our marriage and my brother was with me for Christmas after 6 yrs. I made all the goodies during the week after I got back from work. Some of the recipes are from other fellow bloggers. Sharing with you all a few pictures and a recipe.

Clockwise from top: Farsi Puri, Rawa Ladoo, Fruit cake, Seven Cup Sweet, Murukku, Kaju Katli and Boondi Ladoo in the center


Farsi Puri



Rawa Ladoo



Fruit Cake



Seven Cup Sweet




Murukku




Kaju Katli



Boondi Ladoo



My Christmas Goodies


Seven Cup Sweet
Ingredients:

Coconut (shredded) - 1 cup
Besan - 1 cup
Ghee - 1 cup
Sugar - 3 cups
Milk - 1 cup


Method:

Fry besan in a tawa on low heat for about 5 minutes till the raw smell disappears. Add shredded coconut and fry for another 10 minutes in low heat. Increase the heat and add milk and sugar and mix well. Stir till all the sugar melts and then slowly add ghee in spoonfulls till it is completely absorbed. Stir till the whole mixture comes together and one big lump. Pour onto a greased plate and let it cool. Cut it into diamonds when it is still warm.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas


WISHING YOU All A MERRY CHRISTMAS

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Simple and Easy Pasta

This is a very easy and quick recipe. It takes about 20min and tastes great. I try to avoid readymade sauces as much as possible and hence this simple marinara tastes fresh and delicious. It is also free of any preservatives that are usually found in store bought sauces.

Ingredients:

Angel Hair Pasta - 8 oz
Tomatoes (diced and stored in juice) - 1 can
Basil (dried) - 1 tbsp
Carrots (sliced) - 2
Capers - 1 tbsp
Onion (chopped) - 1
Garlic (finely chopped) - 6
Olive oil - 3 tbsp
Salt - as needed
Pepper - as needed
Chilli flakes - 1 tsp (optional)


Method:

Heat olive oil in a pan and add chopped onions and garlic. Once the onions turn translucent add sliced carrots and cook on medium heat. After about 5 minutes add the diced tomatoes along with the juice and let it cook in medium heat, till the tomatoes turn mushy (about 15 min). Add capers, dried basil, chilli flakes, salt and pepper and leave it on low heat. In the meantime cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. Remember to add salt to the water, before adding the pasta. Once its cooked, drain and add it to the sauce pot and heat if for about 2 min. Sometimes I add a bit of the drained water to the sauce, if the sauce becomes too thick. Serve it with freshly grated parmesan cheese. We usually avoid cheese so I skipped the cheese. You can make a bigger batch of the sauce and store the remaining in the fridge for 2-3 days.

Variation: Grilled vegetables like eggplant, squash or different color peppers or grilled meat can be added to the pasta.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

White Chocolate - Cranberry Fudge

Here is my first entry to the JFI-Chocolate event. I've never made a dish for any other event this fast. Now I am sure you guys will accept that I am obsessed with chocolate.

My boss usually brings us some treats during the holiday season and last year he brought this fudge. They tasted wonderful and my husband and I liked it a lot. I've been bugging him ever since for the recipe. Unfortunately his wife misplaced the recipe. I decided to Google for the recipe and found the one I liked, here.


I omitted the nuts as the one I tasted last year was without the nuts. This tasted exactly like the one my boss brought last year and this year I packed some for him, as a pre-Christmas treat. It is a very easy no bake recipe and takes about 5 minutes to prepare and 2 hours to set. The fudge was chewy and soft and the cranberries complemented the white chocolate perfectly.

Ingredients:

White Baking Chocolate (chopped into smaller pieces) - 12 0z
Sweetened condensed milk - 2/3 cup
Cranberries - 1 cup
Butter - 1 tsp


Method:

Line a 8x8x2 inch pan with aluminium foil (with some extra foil hanging on the sides) and grease it with butter. Microwave the chocolate along with the condensed milk for about 1-2 mins, checking and stirring in between. Once all of the chocolate melts, mix in the cranberries and stir well. Pour into the greased pan and let it cool for about 2hrs in the fridge. Since its pretty cold here, I left it out for 1 hr and refrigerated it for 30min. Once its set, remove the fudge from the pan by lifting using the foil. Cut it into 1 inch cubes, remove the foil and store in an airtight container. If in warn places then its best to refridgerate it.

Friday, December 07, 2007

JFI - January

Its my turn to host this month's JFI(Jihva For Ingredients). This event was started by Indira of Mahanandi and you can read all about it here. After much thinking (who am I kidding), I decided on this month's special ingredient. Full credit goes to my husband for suggesting this. Its my most favorite ingredient and I think it holds true for most of you out there. Both kids and adults love it. I have not come across anyone who hates it. There are people who like it, some who love it and then there are people like me who adore it.

Yes this month's special ingredient is CHOCOLATE.


For the last few months, every time a JFI ingredient was announced, I would hope that it isnt chocolate. I am glad that I got to choose this as my ingredient. You can say that I am obsessed with it. I love chocolate in any form or shape.

We have all heard and read a lot of contradicting reports about its health benefits (dark chocolate is considered the best), but no one has challenged its taste and the smile it brings to ones face after a bite. Even dieters and diabetics can indulge in healthy chocolate dishes. It is a proven mood enhancer and some even claim its an aphrodisiac. I usually don't need a reason or occasion to have a chocolate filled dish and I am always on the lookout for new recipes. So this will be a good chance for me to learn a lot of new chocolate based dishes from all you guys. Another more selfless reason was, since most of us are baking goodies for the holiday season it might be easier for everyone to participate.

Since chocolate does not need any further description, I am listing the rules for participation. You can use chocolate (milk, semisweet, dark or white), cocoa powder or carob (for people with allergies) as your main ingredient. Do not restrict yourself to desserts alone, there a lot of main course dishes that can be made with chocolate like here.

1. Prepare a dish with this ingredient, and post it on your blog. The choice of recipe is not restricted to Indian cuisine.

2. Please link to this event announcement, and feel free to use the logo.

3. Send in your entries to letzcook@gmail.com with JFI-Chocolate in the subject line.

4. Include the following details in your mail:
Name of blog
Blog url
Name of recipe
Recipe url
Picture of the dish

5. If you are a non-blogger, please send your recipe and picture with your e-mail and I will post it for you.

6. The deadline for this event is Jan 5, 2008 (so that you have enough time to send in your New Year goodies entries). The round-up will be posted by Jan 10, 2008.

I look forward to your creative contributions.