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DIWALI SWEETS RECIPES | DIWALI SNACKS RECIPES
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Chicken Cashew Masala | Chicken in Onion and Cashew Sauce

These pictures have been lying in my drafts for very long time now and I thought it's time to post this.  This chicken curry was made by my BIL when we visited them some time back.  I quickly took pictures so excuse the picture quality it was in hurry as my we all were very hungry.  I asked BIL for the recipe while eating asked and made a mental note  :).  Since this is so simply and delicious chicken recipe I wanted to post it.  Hope you guys enjoy this curry as much I  did. 
Chicken Curry with Cashew
Ingredients:
Chicken - 1 bird [medium size]
Onion - 300 gms
Ginger-Garlic Paste - 1tbsp
Cinnamon Powder - 1/2 tsp
Cumin Powder  - 1/2 tsp
Clove Powder - 1/4 tsp
Red Chili Powder - 1 tsp
Coriander Seeds Powder - 2 tsp
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
Cashew Paste - 1/4 Cup
Oil - 5 tbsp
Salt - to taste
Cilantro - 3 tbsp chopped [For garnishing]
To Marinate:
Red Chili Powder - 2 tbsp
Ginger-Garlic Paste - 1tbsp
Lemon Juice - 2 tbsp
Salt  - 2 tsp
Chicken Masala Recipe
Method:
1. Clean, wash chicken pieces and add all the marination ingredients and let it marinate for 2 hours or longer.
2. Chop onion in chunks and grind it into smooth paste, add little water only if required.
3. In a pan heat oil add onion paste, all the spice powders and fry until onion starts to leave oil around 15 minutes in medium to slow heat.  Onion has to be fried well so take your time on this.
4. Add marinated chicken, mix well and let it cook until chicken pieces gets cooked fully in medium to slow heat.  Stir in intervals and this will take little longer time around 20+ minutes.
5. Add salt and cashew paste mix everything well and cook until oil starts to floats on top for around 10-12 minutes in slow flame.  Off the flame and garnish with cilantro.
This recipe takes times but it has to be cooked in slow to medium flame and it's worth it and here is my platter with poori and pulav and so many other things. 
Chicken curry in cashew onion sauce recipe
Have a nice day.

Fresh Corn and Capsicum Soup

I was never a soup person, I use to have soup only in restaurants and limit myself with tomato soup and if I venture out to any new soup most of the time my experience would not be so good. Now a days I try to make different variety of soups at home just to keep myself interested in it.  I am also showing how easy it to make corn kernels off the cob.
 
Fresh Corn and Roasted Capsicum Soup Recipe
I had fresh corn to use and I wanted to do something other than usual corn on the cob which anyway I did for the another corn. I found this recipe at SK website and changed almost fully to do it my way, the result yummy delicious and filling soup. Fresh sweet corn and roasted capsicum adds a wonderful flavour and texture to the soup and to my surprise even DH liked it which is very unusual. So as I always say if you looking for something different, simple and elegant then this is for you Smile

Corn on Cob Sop
Severs – 2-3
Adapted from: Sanjeevkapoor.com

Ingredients:

Fresh Corn - 1 OR Frozen Corn -1 cup
Capsicum - 1 [medium]
Onion - 1 [ medium]
Garlic Pod - 1
Olive Oil - 1 tsp
Salt and Pepper - To taste
Vegetable Stock - 2 Cups OR 1 Vegetable Stock Cube
Water

Corn Soup1
Method:
1. Remove corn’s outer husk (don’t peel it) just remove the threads and bring back the husk on the back around corn ear and roast corn on direct medium flame until it slight charred around 3-5 minutes,turning sides on intervals.

Corn Soup
How to make Corn kernels off the Cob

2. Once roasted let it cool for a while and remove husk. Use a sharp knife run it vertically and scrap out corns, it comes around 1 Cup from 1 corn, keep aside 1 tbsp of corn kernels for garnishing. If you are using frozen corn, then thaw it and jump to step 3.

Corn on the cob soup
3. Wash and roast slightly capsicum on direct flame.  Soak in water, remove skin and chop it, keep aside. Chop garlic and onion.

Capsicum Soup
3. In a pan heat oil, sauté garlic until light brown  add chopped onion and sauté until transparent, add corn and sauté for a minute.

Corn on the cob and capsicum soup
4. Add capsicum and mix well.  Add salt, pepper, vegetable stock cube and 1 cup water.  Bring it good boil and let it simmer for 3 minutes or until corn gets cooked.

Corn and Capsicum Soup5
5. Let it get cool and then  transfer everything to a mixer or blender.  I don’t add more water while blending just to make sure my mixer doesn’t overflow. If you wish you can add more water or stock.

Corn on the cob capsicum soup
6. Grind it to smooth paste and transfer back everything to the pan and add 2 cups of water and bring to boil.  Adjust salt and pepper if required.

Corn on the cob with capsicum soup
Garnish with reserve corn kernels, chopped spring onion/cilantro, or carrot choice is yours. I used corn and chopped carrot. Serve hot, we had it with fried rice.

Corn and Capsicum Soup with Fried Rice
Note:
~ You can add little corn flour mixed in water to thicken the soup but I don’t find it necessary to do that as the soup by itself thick and creamy.

And this soup makes it way to Lubna's Joy from fasting to feasting IV.
Have a nice day ~~

Poha Kheer | Aval Payasam | Rice Flake Milk Pudding

Hope all celebrating Janmashtami/Krishna Jayanthi had a good day of celebration.  In most of the North India it's celebrated today with much fun fare which includes more of playing Dahi Handi, The handi is a clay pot filled with buttermilk that was positioned at a convenient height prior to the event. The topmost person on the human pyramid tries to break the handi by hitting it with a blunt object mostly nariyal (coconut) is preferred being a sign of purity,truth and other good terms in hindu religion. When that happens the buttermilk is spilled over the entire group, symbolizing their achievement through unity and ofcourse they get prize money.  It's a wonderful experience to see and in Maharashtra it’s quite famous, you must have seen in old Hindi movies. 

Poha Kheer Aval Payasam

In our place it's quite a simple affair my mom use to keep fast the whole day which is broken at midnight or next day after Pooja.  Offering to the God is normally Kheer and fruits, and I follow the same.  I made Poha Kheer/Aval Payasam in microwave which is easy.  I normally make poha kheer in microwave as it's quite fast and perfect to make on a working day :)

Aval Kheer Aval Payasam

Oh you notice the mango?  Well it's Mexican mango from Fair Price though quite expensive and nothing like our Indian Mango!

Ingredients:

Poha/Aval/Beaten Rice - 1/2 Cup [ I used thin variety]

Milk - 1 Cup

Jaggery Powdered - 1/4 Cup [ I used 2 tbsp]

Ghee/Butter - 1 tsp

Cardamom Powder - 1/4 tsp

Cashew and Raisins - 5-7 each

Water - 1/4 Cup

Poha Kheer Milk Pudding Recipe

Method:

1. In a microwave safe large bowl heat ghee and roast cashews for 1 minute or until it's golden brown.  It will be done in less than a minute so keep a eye to avoid burning, keep aside.  You can roast raisins for 30 seconds too if you prefer and keep aside.

2. In the same bowl add poha/aval and roast for 2 minutes, stir in every 30 seconds.  Now add milk and water and microwave for 3 minutes, the poha will be soft by now if not microwave for another minute.

~ Now if you add only milk, poha will absorb it fully. So I add little water along with milk, you will notice that the milk will not be absorb fully now. I do the same while making semiya paysam too, this way I don't end adding milk more than required.

Poha Kheer-1

3. Now add cardamom, powdered jaggery and stir it well to mix everything.

Poha Kheer Aval Payasam1

4.  Microwave for a minute. Here you have to careful and jaggery tends to curdle milk.  Let it rest for 1-2 minute and then add the roasted cashews and raisins.

~ If milk gets curdle slightly, add 2-3 tbsp of milk and it should be fine. 

Aval Kheer Payasam

So our poha kheer/payasam is ready and this delicious and easy kheer makes it’s way to Lubna's Joy from fasting to feasting IV.

Poha Kheer Aval Paysam Rice Flakes Pudding

For Stove top method


1. In a pan/wok heat ghee, roast cashews and keep aside.  Add poha/aval and saute for 2 minutes or until poha becomes crispy.

2. Add boiled milk and cook until poha becomes soft and gets cooked, now add jaggery, cardamom powder and cook for a minute only. 

Garnish with cashews, raisins and serve hot.

Note:

~ You can use sugar instead of jaggery if you prefer.

 

Have a nice day ~~

Matar Pulao | Peas Pilaf

Pulao is one such dish that can make any occasion grand or just keep it simple, perfect for a party, simple get-together, for a lazy weekend lunch or for lunch box and the fact that it's a one pot meal only makes it more appealing, don't you think so?

Matar Pulao or Peas Pulao and Jeera Rice are the rice recipe that I do the most as these are most simple, delicious, fast and goes well with chole, any curry or even a simple raitha, making our life less complicated.   And then like most of the recipes there are plenty of ways of making this peas pulao too, you can add the below spices or skip anything if you don't like.  Some people like to add fried cashews but then I prefer to keep it simple and original.   I normally do it in pressure or rice cooker rather than using cooked rice and frying it afterwards ofcourse it has it's own taste, no denial in that but then for me it's one pot meal. 



Serves - 2
Ingredients:

Basmati/Long Grained Rice - 1 Cup
Matar/Green Peas - 1/2 Cup
Ghee/Oil - 1 tbsp
Shahjeera/Caraway Seeds - 1/2 tsp [or cumin seeds]
Bay Leaf - 1
Cinnamon - 1" pieces
Green Cardamom - 2
Cloves - 2
Star Anise -1
Onion - 1 medium
Water - 2 Cups
Salt - to taste
Cilantro Chopped - 2 tbsp [optional]
Green Grape - 8-10 [optional]


Method:

1. Wash and soak rice for 15-20 minutes.  Meanwhile Shell peas if using fresh or thaw it if using frozen, slice peeled onion and keep aside.
~ If you soak basmati rice for longer time it tends to break.

2. In a pan or wok heat ghee/oil, add bay leaf, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, star anise and shahjeera saute for 30 seconds.

3. Add sliced onion and saute until transparent, don't let it change colour otherwise pulao colour will change.


4. Add peas and saute for 2 minutes, now add rice mix gently and  saute for a minute.


5. Add salt, water and stir gently.  You can transfer everything to a rice cooker and let it cook like I did.
~ If you going to use pan then let water come to boil, reduced heat, close pan with lid and cook until water absorbed or rice is cooked, stir gently in intervals.


You can also add some green grapes (if too big halve it), but the grapes should not be sour or too sweet.  Long back when I was kid I saw grapes in matar pulao in one birthday party, it was tasty, different and thus stuck in my mind until now and I try to add grape some times.

And this easy pulao goes  to Lubna's Joy from fasting to feasting IV.


Have a nice day ~~

Apple Banana Dates and Almond Milkshake

I had apple to use before it's give up hope and one and then the idea stuck me to make milkshake along with almonds, dates and I made my plan to try it next day. But by then I had fresh batch of banana and thought of adding it along.  This shake is very good as it has high nutrition value of dates and almond and goodness of apple, banana.   We really don't have to add any sweetener as dates does the job perfectly but then if you have sweet tooth add little sugar or honey whatever you prefer.



Apple and banana along with dates taste delicious and almonds adds a wonderful crunch.  I simply loved this shake and now it has become a regular drink for me.  It's very filling making it perfect as breakfast or evening drink.  Enjoy this guilt free drink and relish the goodness. 

Serves - 2
Ingredients:

Apple - 1
Banana - 1
Dates - 6
Almonds - 6
Milk - 2 Cups 
Pista - 2 for garnishing [optional]
Sugar/Honey - To taste [ I didn't use]
Ice Cubes - If required




Method:

1. Let's gather all the ingredients, our friends for the day.
~ Yes, I did missed the milk here :)

2. Peel, chop apple and banana.  Chop almonds, dates and add in a blender or mixer. 

3. Blend for a minute and then add milk.


4. Blend for a minute again.  If required add sugar or honey.


Serve chill or with ice and garnish with chopped pista.   Glad to send this to Lubna's Joy from fasting to feasting IV.



Have a nice day ~~

Pasta In White Sauce

If you have notice in most of my pasta recipes I use tomato sauce.  I hardly make white sauce for pasta but when I do once in a blue moon then it has to be this way, I add little of garlic which adds nice flavor and onion for crunch.  You can add any seasoning but I like to add italian seasoning which adds good aroma and flavor to the dish.  If you want to make simple and quick pasta or for kids then this is for you. 

Before moving over to recipe, Wishing all readers Happy Raksha Bandan, hope you guys have great day celebrating it and receive good gifts :D.  If you are still unsure what to do on this wonderful day then check my Rakhi Events rounds here  to get some ideas. 


Serves - 2
Ingredients:

Pasta - 1 1/2 Cups [ I used tri colour fusili]
Salt - 1/2 tsp
Oil - 1/2 tsp
Water - For Boiling

For White Sauce 
Butter/Olive Oil - 1 tbsp
Garlic Pod- 1 [ optional]
Onion - 1/2 [optional]
All Purpose Flour - 1 tbsp
Milk - 1 Cup
Italian Seasoning - 1 tsp
Salt & Pepper - To Taste




Method:

1. Boil water in a large pot add salt, oil and pasta and cook until pasta gets cooked but not over cooked.  Follow the instruction on pack.
~ I used here tri colour fusili to bring colours to dish :D 

2. Drain pasta in a colander and rinse it under tap water, keep aside.  Meanwhile we can work on the sauce. 


3. Chop garlic and onion.  In a pan melt butter in slow flame, add chopped garlic and saute for 30 seconds.  Add onion and sauce for a minute (all this have to be done in slow flame).  Add plain flour mix well and saute for a minute, take care not to burnt it.


4. Now add milk, use a whisk to blend everything together, this also avoids any lumps.  Simmer in slow flame until sauce becomes thick for around 2 minutes. 


5. Add pasta, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning and stir gently.  Cook in flow flame for a minutes or until pasta n sauce comes together. 
~ You can add some parmesan cheese for nice chessy taste, kids will love that.


Serve hot/warm with soup and salad of your choice.  It's good to have the pasta while it's still warm as cold it doesn't taste good, at least I feel that.


If you are going to eat pasta later or have left over then add 1-2 tbsp of milk or water and heat it for 2 minutes or microwave for 1 minute before eating.   I'm happy to send this to Lubna's Joy from fasting to feasting IV.


Have a nice day ~~

White Melon and Lobia Curry

One of another combo that I have tried and liked it.  DH got white melon I think he must have mistaken that as bottle gourd as it looked exactly like bottle gourd from outside and also inside (it was not the round shape one).  For some time I was confused whether it’s indeed bottle gourd but then it was not, white melon taste is little different from bottle gourd so in this recipe you can use bottle gourd too instead of white melon.  I made this on Sat’day and do it faster I used pressure cooker. I decided to use little of lobia that I had and soaked it to make something else but then it was meant for this curry I guess.  While white melon adds soft touch and lobia adds good crunch to the recipe and both together makes a good combination.  

White Melon and Lobia Curry


Serves - 4
Ingredients:

White Melon Cubed –1 Cups
Lobia/Black Eyed Beans – 1/2 Cup
Oil – 2 tsp
Bay Leaf – 1
Cumin Seeds – 1/2 tsp
Tomato – 1
Red Chilli Powder – 1 tsp
Coriander Seeds Powder – 1 tsp
Turmeric Powder – 1/2 tsp
Garam Masala Powder – 1/2 tsp
Dry Mango/Amchur Powder – 1/2 tsp
Kasoori Methi – 1 tsp [crushed]
Salt – to taste


Bottlegourd and Lobia Curry Recipe


Method:

1. Wash and soak lobia with enough water for 4-5 hours or overnight, drain the water from soaked lobia and keep aside.  I normally soak all beans over night.
2. Wash, peel and chop white melon in to medium size cubes.  Chop tomato.
3. In a pressure cooker heat oil, add bay leaf and sauté for 30 seconds.  Add cumin seeds allow it to crack.
4. Add cubed melon, give a good stir.  Add ginger-garlic paste and sauté until raw smell goes away. 
5. Add lobia and stir well.  Add all spice powders and sauté for a minute, now goes chopped tomato, salt and cook for 2 more minutes. 
6. Add 1 cup water, kasoori methi, adjust salt if required and pressure cook for 2 whistles
~ If you are using Futura cooker then cook until cooker starts steaming, it will start steaming in 2-3 minutes. Let it simmer for 5 more minutes in slow flame.

This curry goes well with roti/paratha, or  rice.  Garnish with chopped cilantro if you wish.

Melon and Lobia Curry Recipe

Note:
~ You can add chopped onion, I just skipped it.
~ You can use bottle gourd or potato instead of melon.
~ You can cook the curry in pan, in that case pressure cook lobia and simmer until  white melons gets cooked.

Lobia and White Melon Recipe

Have a nice day ~~

Apple Compote Financiers


Apple Compote Financiers, does the name sounds complicated to you? No? It sure did to me but then when I get to know the recipe I was surprised with it’s simplicity. While I was waiting for other to get ready and browsing few magazines at KL hotel I found this one, got attracted to the beautiful pictures, and gain the knowledge about financiers :) So you see it’s good to read.


The recipe was so simple and attractive that I quickly clicked pictures of the recipe on my phone for my reference. All the spices used here gives very aromatic flavour, while I was clicking the pictures of financiers it was smelling so good that I wanted to eat it right away :D This financiers is also very soft in texture, though I have used a egg here but I guess this is one of perfect recipe to make egg less. Just use apple sauce or apple puree instead of egg and enjoy it, don't let that egg stop you from trying this. I have plans to make this egg less next time too.


I followed the recipe as it is but next time I am going to make few changes, like instead of just adding the compote slice on top of the muffin, I think if we mix 1/4 of compote slices with muffin/financiers batter it's much better as we also get to bite apple in the muffin.

Makes 6
Ingredients:

For Apple Compote Slices

Apple - 2 Big [ I used Fuji Apple]
Water - 300ml
Caster Sugar - 2 cups (200gm)
Green Cardamom - 4
Star Anises - 2
Cinnamon Stick - 2' piece
  
For Financiers
Plain Flour - 1 Cup+ 1tbsp (130gms)
Cinnamon Powder - 1/2 tsp
Baking Powder - 1/4 tsp
Brown Sugar - 1 tbsp (15 grams) [I used dark brown sugar]
Caster Sugar - 2 tbsp (30 grams)
Lemon Zest - 1/4 tsp
Egg - 1
Vegetable Oil - 2 tbsp (30ml) [ I used sunflower oil]
Milk - 4 tbsp (60ml)



Method:
1.  Wash, core and thinly slice apples, immerse in water until ready to use it.   We don't have to peel apples.
~ You can use slicer or a sharp knife, not sharp enough to hurt yourself :D ...I used knief and did pity decent job, what you say?  

 2. In a pan or sauce pan add water, sugar, spices, apple slices and bring to boil on high flame. 

3. Simmer in low flame until apples slices become tender or for around 20-25 minutes.  Drain apple pieces and keep aside to let it cool.


4. Keep simmering the sugar syrup and make it thick, this we can use it as glaze.  

5. Meanwhile we can start working on our financiers.  Sieve flour, cinnamon powder, baking powder and keep aside.

6.  In a bowl mix egg, sugar, oil, milk and lemon zest.  


7. Fold flour in batches and mix gently, avoid any lumps. 


8.  Preheat oven to 180C/320F and grease muffin tray or whatever you going to use to bake these.

9.  Spoon batter into prepared muffin tray until 3/4 filled.  Place the apple slices on top of each muffin in any design you prefer and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean inserted in the middle.  Mine was done in 22 minutes so do keep a eye after 20 minutes. 


 I tried flower design, things to note are:
~ Keep apple skin part on top and working with one slice at a time.
Take a slice of apple, roll it tight to make bud and place in the center of muffin,  now start doing the petals by placing one slice at a time around the bug to make it flower.  

Another way to do is, you make the flower and then place it on top of the muffin.  For this too we have to do the same thing, make a bud and start creating petals by arranging the apple slices around it, while making the flower hold it between your fingers so it won't fall apart.  Just be gentle and careful when you place the flower/apple slices on top of the muffin as the batter might overflow so make sure you fill only 3/4 of the tin.  If you think you have place less slices then arrange few more.

I found both the way of making flower easy, keep the slices straight on the muffin makes it little messy as we tend to touch batter.  And the 2nd style of making the flower and placing may overflow the batter, but in the 2nd method we can get better and clear flower design.    So you see the picture the left side 2 flowers are done in hand and then arranged in the tray and the right side one I used 1st method ie arrange the flower on the tray itself.

10.  Cool on a wire rack completely before glazing.  If you are not glazing then you want increase the sugar in the muffin as it's not very sweet. 
~ While unmolding if the muffins doesn't comes out then just use a knife or back of spoon and gently run over the edges as we don't want to scratch the tray or break the muffin.  The muffin will be out of tray so it's easy, don't panic like me :)



Note
~ You can make any muffin and top it up with apple compote.
~ Don't let the cooked apple slice stay out for long, it will start to change colour.
~ I kept the plate of cooked apple slice over a bowl of cold water to cool the apple slices and make it easy to handle while arrange it.
~ If you want to make it egg less, replace one egg with 1/4 cup of apple puree or any other fruit puree  OR 1/4 cup of apple sauce or even 1/4 cup of whipped tofu.
~ You may add 1/4 of compote slice to the batter then scoop it to tray and top it up with remaining slices. 

This last 4-5 days if refrigerated.  I'm happy to send this to Lubna's Joy from fasting to feasting IV.


Have a nice day ~~