Thursday, 17 November 2016

Chicken Fajita Kebabs


Chicken Fajita Kebabs


 Jam packed with zesty Mexican flavours, these grilled peices of boneless chicken along with vegetables make a great appetiser or a light weekend dinner.

Chicken Fjita Kebabs are not only delicious and healthy but are super easy to make. Just thread the marinate chicken cubes along with the vegetables into skewers. Grill and enjoy with a squirt of lemon, salsa or your favourite sauce. I like to serve mine with a good homemade Guacamole.

These chicken fajita kebabs can be packed for lunch boxes and as impressive appetisers for a dinner party.



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IngredientsQuantity
boneless chicken600g
assorted bell peppers 3
red onions
cumin powder11/2 tsp
chilli powderto taste
paprika powder1 tbsp
dried oregano1 1/2 tsp
lemon juice2 tbsp
olive oil 3 tbsp
 garlic powder  1 tsp
salt  to taste


Method:


Follow the step by step photo tutorial given below and learn how to make Chicken Fajita Kebabs.


Marinate the chicken with salt, garlic powder, paprika, cumin powder, chilli powder, oregano, lemon juice and olive oil. Leave in the fridge to marinate overnight or 3-4 hours.

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Cut the bell peppers and onions into squares pieces.

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Soak the skewers in water for about an hour. Thread the marinate chicken and the vegetables into the skewers.
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Cook over a hot grill, or grill pan about 8-10 minutes on each side until the chicken is cooked through and has a nice golden brown colour to it. The vegtables will also be cooked along with the chicken.

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Serve with any salsa guacamole or your preferred dip.

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Happy Cooking!

Thursday, 3 November 2016

Ferrero Rocher Cake


Ferrero Rocher Chocolate Cake


ferrero-rocher-chocolate-cake-birthday-high-tea-tea-trolley-birthday-party-hazel-nuts-cocoa-butter-flour-almonds
Ferrero Rocher Chocolate Cake


My son who turned 19 this month is a chocoholic and loves ferrero rocher chocolate too. This birthday I surprised him by making a ferrero rocher cake. Two of his favourite things in one cake!:D

The best thing about this ferrero rocher cake is that you don't need to be a professional baker to make it. The icing is fairly simple, you just ice the cake and decorated it with ferrero rocher chocolate. The sides of the cake can be decorated with crushed  almonds, ferrero rocher or hazel nuts whatever you have at hand.

The cake itself not only tastes uberlicious but also looks quite impressive too. The ferrero chocolate has done all the work but the credit goes to you. I would call this sweetly evil! The frosting is also really interesting you just mix some nutella along with butter cream icing spread it on the cake and that's basically your ferrero rocher cake proudy displayed on your tea trolley.

This cake not only adds spark to a birthday party but works great for any occasion. Try it on a high tea party and your guests will surley be impressed.

So follow the step by step photo tutorial and learn how to make easy and delicious ferrero rocher cake at home.

ferrero-rocher-chocolate-cake-birthday-high-tea-tea-trolley-birthday-party-hazel-nuts-cocoa-butter-flour-almonds


IngredientsQuantity
all purpose flour1 cup
unsweetened cocoa powder1/2 cup
baking powder2 tsp
salta pinch
vegetable oil1 cup
castor sugar1 1/4 cup
eggs 4 whole
butter milk 1 cup
vanilla extract1 tsp
Ingredients For The FrostingQuantity
softened butter1 1/2 cup
nutella1 1/2 cup
icing sugar 1 1/4 cup
 crushed hazel nuts, almonds or ferrero rocher1 cup
ferrero rocher chocolate12

Method:

Sieve the dry ingredients i.e the flour, salt, cocoa powder and baking powder. Set aside.

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Beat the sugar along with the oil add the eggs one by one. Beating well after each addition.

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Fold in the dry ingredients and cut and fold into the cake batter.

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Now add the buttermilk alternating with the dry ingredients. Fold gently. 

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Starting with the dry ingredients and then again ending with the dry ingredients mix until all the buttermilk and dry ingredients have been used in the batter.

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Pour the batter in a 9 inch greased cake tin and bake at 180 degrees. The cake is ready when a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Leave the cake to cool on a wire rack while you prepare the chocolate and nutella frosting. 

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To make the frosting beat the butter with icing sugar beat till smooth and creamy. Mix in the nutella and beat again until the mixture is homogenously mixed together.

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Place a big dallop of froasting on the cake and spread with the help of a palette knife.

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Now sprinkle with some crushed ferrero rocher or hazel nuts.

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Place the other layer of cake on top and spread with another layer of frosting.

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Arrange the ferreo rocher chocolate all around the circumference of the cake. Decorate the sides with crushed hazel nuts, almonds or ferrero rocher chocolate.

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Serve with your favourite tea or coffee.


ferrero-rocher-chocolate-cake-birthday-high-tea-tea-trolley-birthday-party-hazel-nuts-cocoa-butter-flour-almonds


Boun Appetito!

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Tri-Colour Gniocchi Pasta



Tri-Colour Gniocchi Pasta

Tri-Colour Gniocchi Pasta



Gniocchi are Italian dumplings made with potatoes, flour and eggs. No fancy schmancy ingredients just three vegetables and basic pasta components come together to create these delectable tricoloured gniocchi.

Instead of plain flour gniocchi may also be made with farina 00 (Italian flour) wholewheat flour, stale bread or semolina. Potato Gniocchi are the most popular but other vegetables like pumpkin, tomatoes and spinach may also be used. That's why I have made these tricoloured gniochi using spinach, potatoes and tomarto paste.There are different ways of serving the gniocchi. These can be served over a tomato based sauce or a sauce made with butter and herbs. Sage is the most popular herb used for this purpose. I mostly like to serve mine over a tomato based sauce.


There are some secrets for making fluffy and melt in the mouth gniocchi. Firstly mash the potatoes while still warm. Proper proportion of flour is also crucial in making a good gniocchi. Adding more flour results in a chewy texture rather than a soft delicate one. Kneading the gniocchi too much can result in the flour releasing gluten, the product is again a chewy gniocchi.  Last but not the least don't over cook the gniocchi or it will turn into a mush. A good gniocchi should still have a good bite to it. For making professional looking gniocchi you can use a gniocchi making board. I haven't used the board so my tricoloured gniocchi has a homemade look to it.

Also check out Pasta Primavera and 5 A Day Veggie Pasta for quick and easy vegetarian dishes


IngredientsQuantity
potatoes3 medium
cooked, strained spinach 30g
 thick tomato paste2 tbsps
plain white flour100g
egg 1 whole
nutmegpinch
freshly ground black pepperto taste 
salt to taste 
olive oil or butter2 tbsps
minced garlic  1-2 cloves
fresh or dried sage 1 tbsp


Boil potatoes and mash either with the help of a fork or a potato masher.

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Add the flour, salt, black pepper and nutmeg.

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Now add in the egg and knead very lightly.
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Cover with a cling film and place in the fridge for an hour or two.

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Take out of the fridge and divide the gniocchi dough into three equal parts as shown in the picture.

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Mix tomato paste into one part.

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Mix until the tomato paste is homogenously mixed into the dough. Place in the fridge until needed.

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Add cooked and strained spinach into the second part. I didn't strain out enough water from the spinach and so had a hard time handling the dough.

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Again mix properly until the spinach is homogenously distributed into the dough. Plce into thefridge until needed.

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The third portion of the dough remains plain. Now roll each portion into a thin log and cut into bite size pieces. As shown.

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Bring a pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Add the gniocchi. The gniocchi will be ready when it floats to the top.

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Drain through a colander and set aside.

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Saute the chopped garlic in olive oil. Add the mixed herbs and then add the par boiled gniocchi. 

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Toss the gniocchi with the garlic and oil, season with salt and pepper.

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Remove from heat and serve along with a salad or Italian bread (pane)




Tri-Colour Gniocchi Pasta



Quick and easy tricoloured gniocchi makes an impressive vegetarian dish so do try it and let me know if you like it.

Happy Cooking!


Thursday, 20 October 2016

Nawabi Biryani


Nawabi Biryani

nawabi-biryani-Indian-cuisine-main-dish-rice-tomatoes-garam-masala-red-pepper-fried-onions-kewra-screwpine-cashews-almonds-sesame-seeds-lemon-mint-green-pepper-cloves-cinnamon-chicken-pilaf-entree-

Nawabi Biryani






Biryani needs no introduction- it's a time honoured dish prepared throughout the year regardless of season or occasion. It's a sunday staple in my house. Sometimes I make chicken biryani and on some other sundays it's Chicken Biryani either the sindhi or bombay type.

Recently I have developed a secret love for this nawabi or royal biryani. This is my go to biryani since I first tried out the recipe and now it's my favourite sunday dish, the best one pot meal ever! Nawabi biryani is a combination of aromatic spices saffron infused milk and nuts.

Blanched almonds, cashews and sesame seeds are ground into a coarse powder and then made into a paste. which in turn enriches the biryani to give it a touch of royality. The nut paste can either be mixed in yogurt or added to the chicken when it's just about done. I however like to add the nuts half way through the cooking process.

I have made Nawabi Biryani both with mutton and chicken and I find both flavours equally tempting. So what are you waiting for folllow the step by step photo tutorial given below and introduce your taste buds to the new and enriched sensational flavour of Nawabi Biryani.



nawabi-biryani-Indian-cuisine-main-dish-rice-tomatoes-garam-masala-red-pepper-fried-onions-kewra-screwpine-cashews-almonds-sesame-seeds-lemon-mint-green-pepper-cloves-cinnamon-chicken-pilaf-entree-



IngredientsQuantity
chicken pieces on bone650g
basmati rice 750g
vegetable oil1/2 cup
onions sliced3 medium
ginger/garlic paste2 tsp each
red chilli powder2 tsp
cumin powder1 tbsp
coriander powder1 tbsp
garam masala powder1tsp
thick strained whole yogurt5 tbsps
almond, sesame seed and cashew paste3/4 cup
sliced tomatoes3 medium
cardamom pods split open 8 pieces
whole black pepper2 pieces
cinnamon sticks4 pieces
black cardamom5 tbsps
 chopped fresh coriander and sliced green chillies1/2 cup
saffron infused milk1/2 cup



Method:

Boil the banaspati rice in abundant salted water. Boil until the rice is 75% cooked drain through a colander and set aside.

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Heat 1/2 cup of milk for 2 minutes add 1/4 tsp of saffron strands. Remove from heat and set aside covered.

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Fry the onions until crisp and golden.Set aside.

nawabi-biryani-Indian-cuisine-main-dish-rice-tomatoes-garam-masala-red-pepper-fried-onions-kewra-screwpine-cashews-almonds-sesame-seeds-lemon-mint-green-pepper-cloves-cinnamon-chicken-pilaf-entree-

Marinate the chicken along with red chilli powder, garam masala, yogurt, turmeric salt and fried onions.

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Heat oil in a heay based pot add the whole black peppers, cumin, cinnamon stiicks whole black cardamom and green cardamom.

nawabi-biryani-Indian-cuisine-main-dish-rice-tomatoes-garam-masala-red-pepper-fried-onions-kewra-screwpine-cashews-almonds-sesame-seeds-lemon-mint-green-pepper-cloves-cinnamon-chicken-pilaf-entree-

Once the spices began to release their aroma you can add the marinated chicken. Also add the ground cashews, almond and sesame seed paste.

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Cook until the moisture from the chicken evaporates and it is completely cooked through.

nawabi-biryani-Indian-cuisine-main-dish-rice-tomatoes-garam-masala-red-pepper-fried-onions-kewra-screwpine-cashews-almonds-sesame-seeds-lemon-mint-green-pepper-cloves-cinnamon-chicken-pilaf-entree-

Take out the cooked chicken into a clean bowl. Add a layer of boiled rice in the pot in which the chicken was cooked.

nawabi-biryani-Indian-cuisine-main-dish-rice-tomatoes-garam-masala-red-pepper-fried-onions-kewra-screwpine-cashews-almonds-sesame-seeds-lemon-mint-green-pepper-cloves-cinnamon-chicken-pilaf-entree-

Add the cooked chicken followed by tomato slices, mint leaves, and fried onions. Keep repeating this sequence of layering the ingredients until all the rice, chicken, fried onions and mint leaves have been layered.

nawabi-biryani-Indian-cuisine-main-dish-rice-tomatoes-garam-masala-red-pepper-fried-onions-kewra-screwpine-cashews-almonds-sesame-seeds-lemon-mint-green-pepper-cloves-cinnamon-chicken-pilaf-entree-

Finally add the saffron infused milk. Leae to cook on very low heat. Cover the lid with a tight lid to entrap the steam. The biryani will now cook in it's own steam. Fluff the rice a few times to disperse the layers of biryani. Check after 10-15 minutes remove from heat when the rice is fully cooked.

nawabi-biryani-Indian-cuisine-main-dish-rice-tomatoes-garam-masala-red-pepper-fried-onions-kewra-screwpine-cashews-almonds-sesame-seeds-lemon-mint-green-pepper-cloves-cinnamon-chicken-pilaf-entree-

Serve with your favourite raita. I hope you like this recipe for Nawabi Biryani. Don't forget to try this delicious Nawabi Biryani full of royal flavour and do let me know if you like it.

Buon Appetito!

Thursday, 13 October 2016

DIYHomemade Turmeric and Ginger Throat Lozenges


diy-homemade-throat-lozenges-turmeric-ginger-licorice-ginger-tea-cold-remedy-autumn-recipe-rock-candy


I was alarmed by the agonizing look on DD'S face when she returned from university today. What is it? I asked her is every thing ok? Yes, I just have an extremely sore throat and blocked sinuses.
So my worst fear has come to life, autumn has started to show its effects in the form of sore throats and colds. I headed right into the kitchen to make some turmeric and ginger tea for her. By the time she sipped her ginger tea she already started to feel better. An hour passed by and she was back to the starting point.

So I started making the second cup of ginger tea. My daughter has actually suffered from severe asthma until she was 14 years of age. Thank God we both defeated this horrible desease, actually we are both warriors. With my day and night research on a natural cure and her taking my advice with reluctance and some optimism asthma was gone for ever. So whenever she has a sore throat I am worried that her asthma might  return if I don't take care for her properly. There is always a hidden fear at the back of my mind.

While making the second cup of tea an idea struck my mind. Why not make some homemade turmeric and ginger lozenges for her so that I don't have to make the ginger and turmeric tea for her again and again. Yes, I could have made a big pot but I prefer making fresh tea evey time. So with a recipe for turmeric and ginger lozenges in mind along with making use of my rusted knowledge of herbal science I succeeded in making a batch of these homemade DIY throat lozenges.

These turmeric and ginger throat lozenges are made from all natural ingredients and help keep the throat moist thus easing a sore throat and may help in the expulsion of mucous from the throat. I have used rock candy to make these sore throat lozenges but you can replace it with an equal amount of sugar in the recipe. Apart from using turmeric and ginger I have also used licorice tea to execute this recipe. All three ingredients have benefits which are described below.


Turmeric

The herb turmeric is composed of a substance called curcumin that is basicaly responsible for the anti-inflammatory, anti viral and anti bacterial properties associated with turmeric. Curcumin also relieves congestion caused by cough and cold.


Ginger

Gingerol is the substance responsible for the medicinal properties of ginger. Ginger not only helps in boosting the immune system but also aids the removal of accumalted toxins from the body. Ginger is also a natural decongestent, helping fight throat and respiratory tract infections. It is also the best treatment for expelling phelgm out of the body.

Licorice

Licorice helps to thin the mucous thus helping it's elimination from the body. Licorice root has anti-inflamatory and decongestant properties. It helps to dilate the air passages so that the oxygen can flow freely. 


IngredientsQuantity
rock candy or sugar100g
water1/2 cup
ginger juice1 tsp
turmeric1/2 tsp
licorice tea1/4 cup
icing sugaras needed

Method:


 Mix the rock candy along with water, ginger juice and turmeric powder. Also add the licorice tea if using.

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 Meanwhile sprinke a generous amount of icing sugar on a plate or tray. Make impressions with the knob of a tea pot lid. This will form moulds for the candy. (got this idea while surfing online)

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Cook until the sugar candy is completely dissolved and the mixture begans to thicken. as shown in the picture.

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Drop the candy into the round moulds with the help of a spoon. The candy will be transparent but will become opaque after being coated with icing sugar.

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Let the candy cool and then remove from the moulds and store in a jar. Use as needed. 

diy-homemade-throat-lozenges-turmeric-ginger-licorice-ginger-tea-cold-remedy-autumn-recipe-rock-candy

Nota Bene

 I am not a medical doctor or registered dietician. Always consult with your GP when using herbs as some herbs may interact with medications. Don't use licorice tea if you are suffering from high blood pressure. 

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