Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Healthy Baked Sweet Potato Fries

This fry will replace all your high fat potato fries. These are healthy, low fat and a baked version of fries. Its easy to prepare and tastes awesome. Try these and you'll never want the fast food French fries.

Here is the recipe..


Serves: 2

Ingredients:
1 medium sized sweet potato
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1/4 tsp Garlic powder or 1 small garlic, mashed (optional)
1/4 tsp cumin powder
1 tbsp oil, any

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 425 deg F(220 deg C). Line a baking with with a parchment paper.

Wash, peel, and cut the sweet potato just like you cut the potatoes for the French fries (cut it a little thin if you want a crispy fry).

Now toss the potatoes with the rest of the ingredients and spread them on the lined baking sheet in a single layer.

Bake them at 425 deg F(220 deg C) for 15 to 20 minutes. Few more minutes if you like it crunchy. Do keep an eye so that it doesn't get burned.

Enjoy the fries with a little ketchup!



Also sending my first pic of fries to "CLICK", a food photography event. This month's theme being Bi-Color, any food related picture having just 2 colors. While the pic may have several colours, but TWO colors must be DOMINANT. Here i go..

Enjoy and have a great week!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Mallows - Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies

Daring Bakers July 2009 Challenge

The July Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Nicole at Sweet Tooth. She chose Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies and Milan Cookies from pastry chef Gale Gand of the Food Network.

Mallows(Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies)




Recipe courtesy Gale Gand, from Food Network website

Prep Time: 10 min
Inactive Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 10 min
Serves: about 2 dozen cookies


Ingredients for the cookies:

  • 3 cups (375grams/13.23oz) all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (112.5grams/3.97oz) white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 12 tablespoons (170grams/ 6 oz) unsalted butter
  • 3 eggs, whisked together
  • Homemade marshmallows, recipe follows
  • Chocolate glaze, recipe follows
Ingredients for the marshmallows (Corn syrup Free):
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 tbsp. powdered gelatin
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • pinch of cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup cornstarch
Ingredients for chocolate glaze:
  • 12 ounces (340 gms) semisweet chocolate
  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup)cocoa butter or vegetable oil


Directions:

For the Cookie: In a mixer with the paddle attachment, blend the dry ingredients.
On low speed, add the butter and mix until sandy.
Add the eggs and mix until combine.
Form the dough into a disk, wrap with clingfilm or parchment and refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.
When ready to bake, grease a cookie sheet or line it with parchment paper or a silicon mat.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Roll out the dough to 1/8-inch thickness, on a lightly floured surface. Use a 1 to 1 1/2 inches cookie cutter to cut out small rounds of dough.
Transfer to the prepared pan and bake for 10 minutes or until light golden brown. Let cool to room temperature.

For the marshmallows: In a saucepan, combine the water and sugar, bring to a boil until “soft-ball” stage, or 235 degrees on a candy thermometer. (If you do not have a candy thermometer, refer "the cold water candy test")
Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water in a large steel bowl and let dissolve.
Pour the cooked sugar over bloomed gelatin in thin steam while the hand mixer is on high speed.
Change to medium speed and add cream of tartar, continue to whip until the mixture hold its shape. Add vanilla extract and salt and continue whipping until stiff.
Transfer to a pastry bag.
Sprinkle cornstarch onto a large baking pan and push it in with the object of your favorite shape and pipe in the marshmallow mixture.


OR Pipe a “kiss” of marshmallow onto each cookie directly. Let set at room temperature for 2 hours.

Tip: If you are making marshmallows separately then after it sets, just heat up the base of the marshmallow with a lighter for few seconds and take the burnt skin out and stick the burnt side of the marshmallow onto the cookie base. Let it set for few minutes. This helps the marshmallow to stick well to the cookie and wont let the cookie and the marshmallow separate when dipping into the chocolate glaze.

For the glaze:
Line a cookie sheet with parchment or silicon mat.
One at a time, gently drop the marshmallow-topped cookies into the hot chocolate glaze.
Lift out with a fork and let excess chocolate drip back into the bowl.
Place on the prepared pan and let set at room temperature until the coating is firm, about 1 to 2 hours.

Note: if you don’t want to make your own marshmallows, you can cut a large marshmallow in half and place on the cookie base. Heat in a preheated 350-degree oven to slump the marshmallow slightly, it will expand and brown a little. Let cool, then proceed with the chocolate dipping.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Pineapple Gojju ( Pineapple Cooked in a Spicy Coconut Sauce)

Pineapple gojju is one of the traditional South India recipe served most commonly during marriage functions or festivals. "Gojju" is the term used in South Indian language "Kannada" for a gravy/curry. This gojju is basically nothing but chopped pineapple cooked in a spicy coconut sauce. This recipe goes well with both sweet pineapple and the tangy one. If you're using a sweet one, then you'll need to add more tamarind and if you're using a tangy one, you'll be using less tamarind. You just need to alter the tamarind, palm sugar and salt quantities accordingly.


Its got the tang, sweet, salt and spicy flavors to bring out all together a new delicious flavor. Its a must try recipe!


Ingredients:

1 pineapple , peel and chop into 1 inch cubes, or the canned pineapples
1 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/4 cup Urad dal or Black gram
8-10 Byadgi red chillies
1" cinnamon
1 tbsp Poppy seeds
1/2 cup dessicated coconut powder or freshly grated dry coconut
3-4 tbsp jaggery or palm sugar
2 tbsp thick tamarind pulp
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tbsp oil
salt to taste

Directions:

Heat the oil in a pan, add mustard seeds and let it splutter, then add the chopped pineapple and enough water to cover the pineapple. Do not add more water. Cover and cook at low to medium heat and let it boil for few minutes till the pineapple become slightly soft.

Meanwhile, fry the masala ingredients, i.e., urad dal, red chillies (broken), coriander seeds, cumin seeds, and cinnamon. When urad dal starts turning golden brown, switch off the heat and add the poppy seeds. You add poppy seeds at the end as it doesn't require to be fried for a longer time. Just the heat which is in the pan is good enough.

Cool the masala ingredients and grind it along with the desiccated coconut adding as much water required to form a thick smooth fine paste.

Now add the ground masala paste, along with tamarind juice, jaggery and salt to the pineapple. Bring it to boil. Simmer for 10-15 minutes until the curry thickens. If the curry becomes too thick, you can add water and bring it to the curry consistency. You can taste the curry and adjust the tamarind, jaggery and salt quantities.. As these 3 ingredients play a major role in getting the tongue tickling taste.

Serve with any of the Indian flat breads recipes in my blog, or with plain steamed rice. Enjoy!

Variation: You can follow the recipe with any other tangy fruit like grapes, or any other berries. Just make sure you dont boil the fruits too much and let them hold there shape. Its nice when you get bits of these fruits when eating.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Paushtic Roti (100% Whole Wheat Nutritious Flat bread)

The word "paushtic" in Hindi means nutritious, healthy or life giving. This roti is a nutritious combination of a cereal and a pulse along with a green leafy vegetable, enhanced further by the addition of milk or curds. All of these contribute to make this dish rich in folic acid, iron, protein and calcium.

Have these rotis instead of the plain whole wheat chapatis we usually eat.



Recipe adapted from the book Parathas by Tarla Dalal

Makes 12 rotis.

Cooking Time : 20 mins.
Preparation Time : 15 mins.

Ingredients required..
2 cups Whole wheat flour
1/2 cup Bengal gram flour (besan)
3/4 cup boiled and grated potatoes, around 1 medium sized
1 cup Fresh Spinach leaves, finely chopped
2 green chillies, finely chopped
4tbsp fresh curds or milk
1 tbsp oil
Salt to taste

Other ingredients
Whole wheat flour for rolling
Oil for cooking

Method:
Mix all the ingredients and make a soft, smooth dough. Add a very little water, a tsp a time if required. Too much water can result in a sticky, lumpy dough as even potatoes and spinach leave some water. Leave the dough to rest for 10 minutes.

Divide the dough into 12 equal portions and roll out each portion into small rotis using wheat flour for rolling.

Cook on a non stick tava (griddle) spreading a tsp of oil on both the sides till small dots of brown skin appears on the skin.

Serve hot with any of your favorite side dish or with just pickle and curd.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Apple Jam

A delightful treat for your entire family, try this absolutely delicious recipe made simple in microwave. This recipe tastes exactly like the one in the stores, sweet, tangy with a lovely spreadable texture. When its so simple and can be prepared at home, then why buy from a supermarket?

Serves: 1 Cup
Cooking time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

2 Apples, big , peeled & Chopped (if taking small apples,take 3 nos)
1/2 Cup Sugar
2 Tbsp lemon juice
few drops of lemon yellow color (optional)

Method:

Mix sugar and chopped apples in a microwave safe bowl covered. Microwave at 100% power for 3 -4 minutes. Or till apples are softened.

Blend softened apple-sugar mixture in a blender.

Microwave (covered) this blended mixture at 60% power for 7 -8 minutes. or till its slightly thickened and translucent. Stir in between to prevent scorching.

Stir lemon juice, color (if using) and pour in prepared glass jars. Let cool at room temperature and refrigerate. Serve with toasted bread, cakes and cookies.



Have a great week!

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