Sunday, January 30, 2011

Tropical Punch

I made the non-alcoholic version of this punch at a dinner party last weekend and it was a hit! I highly recommend it.

For measurements and the list of ingredients for the recipe, please refer to Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen.    
 
To the punch bowl, add canned mango pulp, frozen concentrate pineapple juice, frozen concentrate lemonade, frozen concentrate orange juice, ginger ale, and rum (optional), and stir to dissolve. Add 6 cups of ice. Garnish with sliced strawberries and mint leaves.

For more recipes, table setting ideas and gardening tips from the author of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen, check out Komali Nunna's blog.

Coconut Ginger Scones

These scones are to to die for! Eat them plain or with lemon curd or jam. Trust me, you will not be disappointed!
 
Recipe provided courtesy of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen.

Yield 18 mini-scones

Ingredients
• 2 cups all-purpose flour
• ½ cup sweetened coconut
• 2 tablespoons sugar
• 1 tablespoon baking powder
• ½ teaspoon salt
• 2 teaspoons lemon zest
• ⅓ cup minced crystallized ginger
• ½ cup cold butter, diced
• ¾ cup heavy cream



Topping  
• 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar
  (coarse sugar)
• ½ teaspoon cinnamon

• ½ teaspoon green cardamom seed powder

• 2 tablespoons cream or milk


Preheat oven to 375 F. In a bowl, stir to combine flour, coconut, sugar, baking powder, salt, lemon zest and ginger. Add butter to dry ingredients. Using a pastry blender or 2 dinner knives, cut the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles very coarse crumbs. 

Pour the cream over the dry ingredients. Gently mix until dry ingredients moisten. Do not over mix.
 

Transfer the dough to work surface. Quickly gather the dough until it clings together. 


Pat the dough into 9 x 9 squares. Cut the dough into 9 squares. Cut each square into 2 triangles. 

Note: If the dough becomes too soft, place the dough in the fridge for 10 minutes so that it hardens. The butter has to be cold while baking in order for the scones to become flaky.


To make the topping, mix sugar, cinnamon and cardamom. 

Notes
  • Turbinado sugar is coarse sugar, which can be found in any supermarket. 
  • Don't use store-bought cardamom seed powder. Cardamom seeds lose their potency quickly after you crack open the shell. It is better to buy a lot of cardamom seeds and keep them in a jar and to crack them open and grind them with a mortar and pestle whenever you need to make cardamom seed powder.


Brush the scones with cream or milk. Sprinkle flavored sugar on top. Transfer scones to a parchment or Silpat lined baking tray.


Bake for 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Serve plain or with jam or lemon curd.


For more recipes, table setting ideas and gardening tips from the author of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen, check out Komali Nunna's blog.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Fish Fry

This recipe makes the fish pieces become tender and succulent, not to mention the fact that salmon is a good source of omega 3 fatty acids.

For measurements and the list of ingredients for the recipe, please refer to Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen.

Mix red onion, garlic, salt, paprika, cayenne, black pepper, cumin powder and vegetable oil in a bowl.

Note: You can prepare this marinade the night before you cook it and it will come out just fine. Don't leave it in the fridge for longer than overnight because then the fish will fall apart when you are frying the pieces. 

Cut the salmon into 2-inch pieces.

Add fish pieces to the marinade and gently toss to coat the fish pieces. Cover with plastic wrap and let it marinate for 2-4 hours in the refrigerator.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a wok or skillet over medium high heat. When the oil is hot, add the marinated fish.

Fry until the fish is cooked thoroughly, while stirring occasionally. Garnish with cilantro and serve.


    For more recipes, table setting ideas and gardening tips from the author of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen, check out Komali Nunna's blog.

    Broccoli Fry

    This is a very easy recipe for stir fry broccoli with flavor and spice. I eat it almost every day.

    For measurements and the list of ingredients for the recipe, please refer to Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen.

    Wash and drain broccoli florets and dry with paper towels.

    Note: If the broccoli florets are very large, you may want to cut them in half so that they cook more evenly and are easier to eat. 


    When the oil is hot, add red chilies. 

    Note: Whole spices are added for flavor and are not meant to be eaten. 

    When red chilies turn darker, add garlic and stir fry for 1 minute.


    Add curry leaves and when they are crisp, stir in broccoli florets.

    Alternative: If you don't have curry leaves, it's not a big deal. The dish will still have a lot of flavor from the spices and garlic. 



    Sprinkle salt, turmeric and cayenne and stir fry for 1 minute.


    Reduce heat to medium, cover the skillet and cook until broccoli is tender while stirring occasionally.


    Serve as a side dish to any meal.



      For more recipes, table setting ideas and gardening tips from the author of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen, check out Komali Nunna's blog.

      Tuesday, January 18, 2011

      Allia's Feast

      My dear friend Allia has cooked a mouth-watering feast featuring recipes from Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen


      Here is her testimony: "Delicious meal inspired by a wonderful chef! khatte chole, chili vegetables, matar paneer, kofta korma, rice.... it only took 3 hours!! Success!"

      For more information about these recipes, check out Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen

      For more recipes, table setting ideas and gardening tips from the author of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen, check out Komali Nunna's blog.

      Saturday, January 15, 2011

      Ghee

      Ghee is clarified butter that is often used in Indian cooking. It is simmered at medium low temperature until the milk solids turn golden brown. In the process it develops a nutty flavor.

      Recipe provided courtesy of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen.
      Yield 1 ½ - 1 ¾ cups
      • 1 pound unsalted butter


      Place butter in a heavy bottomed sauce pan. Heat over medium low heat.

      At first the butter will start foaming and then it will subside. Continue simmering until all the water is evaporated and the milk solids turn golden brown.

      Remove from the heat and slowly pass it through a fine mesh sieve. Discard the brown bits.



      For more recipes, table setting ideas and gardening tips from the author of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen, check out Komali Nunna's blog. 

      Paramannam (Sweet Rice)

      In honor of Sankranthi, the South Indian harvest festival, I made a rice porridge called paramannam which is typically served during this holiday using the rice that is harvested. My parents are both from farming families from villages in South India, so they have brought their tradition of celebrating Sankranthi with them after immigrating here. This dessert is what I look forward to year after year.

      Ingredients
      • 1 cup long grain rice
      • ¼ cup mung dal (optional)
      • ¼ teaspoon salt
      • 1 ¾ cups water
      • 6 cups hot whole milk
      • 1 cup grated, packed jaggery (or light brown sugar)
      • 1 teaspoon green cardamom seed powder
      • ⅓ cup ghee

      • ½ cup raw cashew nuts

      Combine rice, dal, salt and water in a medium heavy bottomed saucepan (avoid using nonstick pan).

      Alternative: If you can't make it to an Indian grocery store, eliminate the mung dal. It will still turn out just as good!

      Bring it to a boil over medium high heat. Stir once.



      Reduce heat to lowest setting, cover with the lid and simmer for 10-12 minutes or until almost all the water is absorbed.

      Stir in milk and increase heat to medium high and bring it to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 30-25 minutes or until rice is very soft, while stirring often.

      Note: Jaggery is unprocessed cane sugar which can be found in Indian stores or Mexican supermarkets. 
       

      Grate and stir in jaggery and cook for about 10 minutes until jaggery is thoroughly incorporated into the rice mixture. Stir in cardamom powder.

      Alternative: Use light brown sugar instead of jaggery.




      Meanwhile, in a small skillet, heat ghee over medium heat. Add cashews and fry until golden brown. 

      Add fried cashews along with the ghee to the cooked rice and stir in. 


      Serve warm.

        For more recipes, table setting ideas and gardening tips from the author of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen, check out Komali Nunna's blog.

        Wednesday, January 12, 2011

        Masala Chai

        I am sipping my masala chai as I type this blog post. Tea is by far my favorite beverage and this recipe for masala chai gives the otherwise ordinary black tea a spicy kick.

        Recipe provided courtesy of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen.
        Serves 4
        • 1-inch cinnamon stick
        • 5 - 6 cloves
        • 3 - 4 green cardamoms, slightly crushed to open the shells
        • 5 - 6 black pepper corns
        • 2 slices ginger
        • 4 cups water
        • ½ cup milk
        • 3 - 4 black tea bags
        • sugar or honey to taste


        Using a mortar and pestle, slightly crush cinnamon stick, cloves, cardamom pods and black pepper corns.   

        Note: Don't use store-bought cardamom seed powder. Cardamom seeds lose their potency quickly after you crack open the shell. It is better to buy a lot of cardamom seeds and keep them in a jar and to crack them open and grind them with a mortar and pestle whenever you need to make cardamom seed powder.

        Spices before crushing

        Spices after crushing

        Note: Use a spoon to peel the ginger. It's much easier to get the skin off that way.

        Grate the ginger.

        Transfer spices to a medium saucepan. Stir in ginger, water and milk.   

        Bring it to a boil over medium high heat.  Reduce heat and simmer for another 2 minutes for all the spices to steep.  Add 3-4 black tea bags and close with a lid. 

        Alternative: Use 1 tablespoon Indian black tea leaves instead of 3-4 black tea bags.  
         


        Turn off the heat and let it steep for 3 minutes. Strain tea through a tea strainer or a mesh strainer into tea cups.   
         
        Serve hot with sugar or honey.

        For more recipes, table setting ideas and gardening tips from the author of Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen, check out Komali Nunna's blog. 
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