Monday, 28 August 2017

Tomato Canapes | Tomato Chaat



Chaat is a savory snack, typically served at road-side tracks from stalls in India. Basically the chaat variants are all based on fried dough, with various other ingredients. The original chaat is a mixture of potato pieces, crisp fried bread / dahi vada / dahi bhalla, gram or chickpeas, tangy-salty spices, with some Indian chutney, fresh coriander leaves and finally yogurt for garnish. But nowadays, there are a huge variety of chaats available in market which include golgappa chaat, bhel puri, dahi puri, sprouted moong chaat,  panipuri, dahi vada, papri chaat etc.




Today I have come up with a recipe, tomato chaat or tomato canape where the tomatoes are used as a base. 
Well, tomatoes are loaded with many health benefits. Tomatoes are a treasure when it comes to their antioxidant benefits due to the high concentration of lycopene. Lycopene is a carotenoid pigment which is related to red tomatoes. 




In terms of conventional antioxidants tomatoes provide an excellent amount of vitamin C and beta-carotene, a very good amount of the mineral manganese and a good amount of vitamin E. Hence tomatoes keep your health in good shape as well as help in preventing several diseases like prevent several types of cancer, maintain strong bones, good for skin, good for digestion, reduce risk of heart disease, improve vision and many more too. In fact, these are incredibly versatile and can also be prepared in a variety of dishes, as well as being great to eat alone. 





Tomato canapes or tomato chaats are so easy to assemble and ready to serve in few minutes. Since I had run out of mint chutney, so used lime juice. Grated beetroot can also be added here for toppings. These healthy canapes can be used as kids snack, a great party appetizer. So lets go in details.

Preparation Time : 15 mins  |  Cooking Time : 0 mins 


Ingredients :        

Ingredients
Measurements
Tomato (medium)
2 no.
Potato (boiled and chopped into small cubes)
½ cup
Carrot (grated)
¼ cup
Onion (finely chopped)
1/8 cup
Coriander leaves (finely chopped)
2 tbsp
Mint leaves (finely chopped)
As needed
Red chili powder
1 tsp
Lime juice
2 tbsp
Tamarind chutney
2 tbsp
Sev
2 tbsp
Salt
As needed


Method :
  1. Wash and clean all tomatoes properly.
  2. Cut the tomatoes in thin slices and keep aside.
  3. Next in a mixing bowl, take chopped boiled potatoes, grated carrot, chopped onion, chopped coriander, red chili powder and salt.
  4. Gently mix everything well and keep aside.
  5. Now take a serving platter and arrange the tomato slices.
  6. Place 1 tbsp of the potato-carrot mixture on each slice. 
  7. Then top with tamarind chutney, lime juice and finally sprinkle some sev and chopped mint leaves on each tomato slice.
  8. Serve immediately and enjoy these healthy tomato canapes !



Notes :

  • Mint chutney can be used instead of lime juice. I had run out of mint chutney, so used lime juice. There is no big difference in taste for both.

PIN for later


This tomato canapes recipe is contributed for 107th Foodie Monday Blog Hop where the theme is #PartyDishes.


Continue Reading ...

Friday, 25 August 2017

Modak Payasam | Modak Kheer

Happy Ganesha Chaturthi to all my readers !!



Ganesha Chaturthi or Binayaka Chaturthi festival marks the birth of Lord Ganesha. It is that time of the year when one sees Maharashtra and other parts of India celebrating the festival of Ganesha Chaturthi with much fervor. After 10 days of fun filled devotion to the lovable Lord Ganesha, the celebrations come to an end by the immersion of Ganapati, known as Ganapati Visarjan.




During these 10 days, people bring home idols of Lord Ganesha and worship with a variety of offerings or prasadam. It is said that Lord Ganesha's favorite sweet is the 'ukadiche modak' and the puja concludes by making an offering of 21 modaks to the deity. Ukadiche modaks are maharastrian modak where the modaks are made from ukad or rice flour dough. The sweet filling on the inside of a modak consists of freshly grated coconut and jaggery while the outer soft shell is made from rice flour. Modaks made with rice flour are preferred as offerings to the deity, however wheat flour version are used these days. Some innovative modaks have also been prepared now-a-days which include stuffed vermicelli modak, motichoor modak, chocolate modak etc.




25th August 2016, the day on which I have stepped into the blogging world. And voila, It is been 1 year completed today ! I cannot imagine that  my second baby, my food blog www.firsttimercook.com is 1 year old now. 





And also today is Ganesha Chaturthi or Binayaka Chaturthi. So It's time for double celebration. On this auspicious day, I have prepared a dish which is none other than the Elephant God's favorite, modak but with a fusion. It is 'Modak Payasam' or 'Modak Kheer'. I just love the flavor of modak in creamy milky base. To know more details about this lip smacking offering or dessert, lets go in details as mentioned below. 

Preparation Time : 30 mins  |  Cooking Time : 35 mins 


Ingredients :        

Ingredients
Measurements
Rice flour
1 cup
Water
1 cup
Jaggery (grated)
½ cup
Coconut (grated)
½ cup
Milk
1 lt
Sugar
½ cup
Cardamom powder
¼ tsp
Ghee
1 tsp + extra for greasing


Method :
  1. Apply ghee all over the modak mold and keep aside.
  2. Heat grated jaggery in a pan. Once it froths up, add grated coconut and mix well. 
  3. Add cardamom powder and keep stirring until the mixture thickens. 
  4. Turn off the heat and let these stuffing cool down completely.
  5. Meanwhile, bring water to boil along with ghee. 
  6. Once the water boils, turn off the heat. 
  7. Immediately add the rice flour and stir quickly. Make sure there are no lumps.
  8. Cover the dough and let it cool a bit. 
  9. When it is still warm, smear ghee over your palm and knead the dough in a mixing bowl until a soft dough forms. Keep aside.
  10. In a heavy bottomed pan, boil milk on low heat till it reduces to 3/4th stirring in between.
  11. Meanwhile, pinch out a small portion of the dough and put it in the modak mold. 
  12. Press along the edges of the mold, so that there will be a cavity or gap in the center. 
  13. Fill it with 1 tsp of stuffing, finally seal by some more dough.
  14. Now delicately open the mold and remove the modak. 
  15. Similarly prepare modaks from rest of the dough. 
  16. Then in a steamer, steam all modaks for 5-6 minutes on medium-high flame.
  17. By the time, milk would be reduced to 3/4th.
  18. Add sugar and cardamom powder to the boiling milk and boil again till the sugar dissolves completely.
  19. Next add all the modaks to the boiling milk slowly and allow to cook for 8-10 minutes.
  20. Turn off the heat, cool the modak payasam and serve chilled or warm !



Notes :

  • Prefer to use small modak mold, Otherwise more milk quantity will require in order to completely cook the modak.
  • Shaping the modaks can be done in mold as well as by hand. To shape them by hand, first grease your palms with ghee. Pinch out a small portion of the dough and place on the palm of one hand, press gently as thin as possible to make a disc shape, place 1 tsp of stuffing at the center, then bring all the edges together and form a conical or round shape.
  • Keep applying ghee on the mold for every modak.
  • Do not overfill the stuffing, otherwise modak may break while steaming as well as cooking in the milk.
  • The rice dough should be handled while warm, else there will be crack while making modak.

PIN for later

Continue Reading ...

Monday, 21 August 2017

Vermicelli Modak with stuffed Dry Fruits




Modak or modakam is an Indian sweet rice flour dumpling. The modak is the favorite sweet of the Hindu deity, Ganesha. Lord Ganesha has a special place in everyone's heart — he is cute, adorable and loves to eat. So, Ganesha Chaturthi is the best time to pamper your sweet tooth with none other than the Elephant God's favorite, modak. It is said that any offering to Ganesha is incomplete without the Modaks. 




Modak or sweet rice flour dumplings are traditionally made by stuffing grated fresh coconut and jaggery, then steamed or fried. These are consumed primarily during Ganesha Chaturthi. During Ganesha Chaturthi, the puja always concludes with an offering of 21 modaks to Ganesha as prasadam. Modaks made with rice flour shell are often preferred for this purpose. 




Steamed modaks are cooked in a steamer and they need to be consumed immediately where as fried modaks are deep fried in oil which makes modaks last longer and have different taste too. Apart from the traditional modaks, there is a lot of variety available in the market which gives a modernized twist to the classic sweet. Some popular and easily available versions are chocolate, mango, pista, kaju, khoya etc. I make traditional modak every year for this special occasion, but this year I am sharing an unique version of modak. It is made from vermicelli or seviyan. I have stuffed these modaks with finely chopped dry fruits. These are awesome in taste as well as texture. 





Traditional or not, modak in any form is a great way to honor our favorite god, Ganesha while satiating our sweet tooth too. Again this is Monday and the theme for 106th Foodie Monday Blog Hop is 'Ganesh Chaturthi Special'. I have contributed these 'vermicelli modaks with stuffed dry fruits' for the theme. So lets go in details method of preparation of vermicelli modak with stuffed dry fruits as mentioned below.


Preparation Time : 15 mins  |  Cooking Time : 10 mins 


Ingredients :        


Ingredients
Measurements
Vermicelli / seviyan
1 cup
Condensed milk
3 tbsp
Raisin
2 tbsp
Almond
2 tbsp
Pistachio
2 tbsp
Cashew
2 tbsp
Desiccated coconut
2 tbsp
Cardamom powder
¼ tsp
Ghee
2 tsp + extra for greasing


Method :
  1. Grease all the modak molds with little ghee.
  2. Finely chop almonds, pistachios,cashews and raisins.
  3. In a pan, dry roast the desiccated coconut till lightly browned. Take out to a large bowl and keep aside.
  4. Next heat 1/2 tsp ghee in the same pan, then add all the chopped dry fruits together and fry till lightly browned.
  5. Transfer all fried dry fruits to the large bowl and mix properly with coconut and keep aside to cool completely.
  6. Next add 1 & 1/2 tsp ghee to another pan and roast vermicelli or seviyan until golden and the aroma emanates.
  7. Switch off the flame and add condensed milk.
  8. Mix it well quickly as the condensed milk will become hard as toffee.
  9. Take a modak mold, close or lock the mold gently.
  10. Put 1-2 tbsp of vermicelli mixture in the mold depending upon the size of the mold.
  11. Press the mixture along the side of the mold, so that there will be cavity.
  12. Add 1 tsp of dry fruits mixture, then cover with little amount of vermicelli mixture on top. Press gently to have an even layer.
  13. Now open or unlock the mold.
  14. Gently remove the modak from mold.
  15. Similarly make modaks from rest of the vermicelli mixture.
  16. Store all vermicelli modaks in an air-tight container and keep in refrigerator.


Notes :

  • Shaping the modaks can be done in mold as well as by hand. To shape them by hand, first grease your palms with ghee. Put 1 tbsp of vermicelli mixture in the palm of one hand, press gently as thin as possible, place 1 tsp dry fruits mixture at the center, then again put 1 tbsp of vermicelli mixture over dry fruits and form a conical or round shape.
  • Always prefer to store these vermicelli modak in an air-tight container.
  • These modaks will last in refrigerator for about 2-3 days.
  • Keep applying ghee on the mold for every modak.
PIN for later


Continue Reading ...

Monday, 14 August 2017

Tricolor Shrikhand - Independence Day Celebration



Shrikhand is an Indian sweet dish made of strained yogurt or hung curd. It is one of the main desserts in Gujarati Cuisine & Maharashtrian cuisine. The name shrikhand is derived from the Sanskrit word “Shikharini” which means a curd prepared with added sugar, flavoring agents, fruits and nuts. Basically to prepare shrikhand, curd is tied in a muslin cloth and left under pressure to drain. The hung curd or 'chakka' in Marathi language is then mixed thoroughly with sugar. Cardamom, saffron and any other flavors are then added and mixed well. It is then kept in the refrigerator. This is purely a no-cook dish and so easy to make.


In Gujarati cuisine, shrikhand is eaten as either a side-dish with poori or simply as a dessert. It is commonly served as part of a vegetarian thali in Gujarati restaurants and also popular in weddings. It is preferably served chilled as a counterpoint to hot and spicy curries too.


Tomorrow is Independence Day which marks 70 years of India being a free nation. Independence Day is a day of glory and pride for us Indians. Let's do something special on the 70 years of our independence. So I have prepared shrikhand in three color which will symbolize our national flag. One is plain kesar elaichi shrikhand, second one is pistachio flavored shrikhand or pista shrikhand, third one is mango shrikhand. So the step by step method of preparation of this tricolor shrikhand is mentioned below.


Preparation Time : 6 & 1/2 hrs  |  Cooking Time : 0 min 


Ingredients :        


Ingredients
Measurements
Yogurt / Curd
3 cup
Mango puree
¼ cup
Cardamom powder
3 tsp
Powdered sugar
½ cup
Saffron strands
1 pinch
Pistachio powder
1 tbsp
Green food color (liquid)
1 drop

Method :
  1. Take a broad deep bowl, place a large strainer over it.
  2. Spread a thin muslin cloth a kitchen napkin over the strainer and then pour the curd in center of muslin cloth.
  3. Wrap the muslin cloth from all sides and tightly tie it to drain whey.
  4. Then place a heavy weight on top of the tied cloth or just hang the tied cloth keeping a bowl under it, so that excess whey will drain off completely.
  5. After a few hours (5-6 hours), if any more whey is not dripping from the tied cloth, then it is ready to be used for shrikhand.
  6. Then untie the muslin cloth and transfer thick strained curd to a bowl.
  7. Add saffron, powdered sugar and cardamom powder.
  8. Mix properly using a hand beater or in a blender until smooth.
  9. Divide the smooth mixture into 3 parts and keep separately in 3 bowls.
  10. Keep one bowl as it is.
  11. Add mango puree to the second bowl and mix well. Mango shrikhand is ready.
  12. Add pistachio powder, green food color to the third bowl and mix well too. Pista shrikhand is ready.
  13. Take three piping bags and fill bags with three colored shrikhand.
  14. Now take shot glasses or dessert bowls.
  15. First pipe a swirl of pista shrikhand at base of the glass or bowl, then pipe a swirl of plain shrikhand and lastly pipe a swirl of mango shrikhand on top.
  16. Refrigerate all layered glasses for at least an hour before serving. Serve chilled !


Notes :

  • Use the curd that is not sour otherwise, shrikhand will turn sour.
  • Do not throw away the drained whey, use it to knead chapti/paratha dough as it is very nutritional.
  • Pistachio powder can be homemade or store bought. Homemade method is first roast the pistachios 3-4 minutes at 170 deg C in microwave, allow to cool completely and then grind to a fine powder.

Continue Reading ...

Rose Buns with Stuffed Mushroom | Rose Bread with Stuffed Mushroom | Rose Shaped Dinner Rolls with Stuffed Mushroom




Rose bun or rose shaped dinner rolls with mushroom stuffing !! whichever you may say, but these are lovely and cute looking rolls. Not only these are pretty in looks, but also delicious in taste. These are light and fluffy, soft and moist as well. These pretty rolls are guaranteed to be a big hit in party as well as loved by kids.




The theme for 105th Foodie Monday Blog Hop is decided as 'Savoury Baked Dish'. So I have prepared these buns as contribution of mine. The dough used is completely egg less. Also I have used the mushroom stuffing. Any other stuffing can be used depending upon choice.


Apart from looking great, the taste of these rose buns with stuffed mushroom is outstanding. You can make these buns with any bread dough recipe, but I can assure that this is the much simpler version with no fail.
So below is the details method of preparation of these soft rose buns with a delicious mushroom stuffing.


Preparation Time : 12 mins(except resting time)  |  Cooking Time : 35 mins 


Ingredients :        


Ingredients
Measurements
For bun
All purpose flour (maida)
1 & ½ cup
Active dry yeast
1 tbsp
Water (Luke warm)
½ cup
Sugar
½ tbsp
Salt
¾ tsp
Oil
1/8 cup
For stuffing
Mushroom (finely chopped)
½ cup
Onion (finely chopped)
¼ cup
Ginger garlic paste
½ tsp
Green chili
2 no.
Turmeric powder
½ tsp
Red chili powder
½ tsp
Oil
2 tsp
Salt
As needed
Coriander leaves (finely chopped)
As needed


Method :
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, mix sugar with luke warm water. Then add yeast to the sugary warm water and keep aside for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, the mixture should turn frothy and have risen well.
  2. Take another broad bowl. Add all purpose flour, oil, salt along with the frothed yeast mixture.
  3. Gather to get a smooth dough. No need to knead so much.
  4. Keep covered with a wet cloth for 1-2 hour or till doubled in size.
  5. Meanwhile, start preparing the stuffing.
  6. Heat oil in a frying pan. Add in finely chopped onion and saute a bit.
  7. Then add ginger garlic paste and cook for some more minutes.
  8. Add finely chopped mushroom, turmeric powder, finely chopped green chilies, red chili powder and salt.
  9. Mix everything well, cover and cook over medium heat for about 10-15 minutes or until all liquid has evaporated.
  10. Add chopped coriander leaves and give a quick stir.
  11. Once done, remove from the heat and allow the stuffing to cool completely.
  12. After 1-2 hour, the dough will be doubled in size.
  13. Now sprinkle some all purpose flour on a flat surface, punch down the dough and knead on the floured surface until smooth with the help of your palm.
  14. Divide the dough into 6 no. of small balls.
  15. Take one ball and roll out to about 5" diameter.
  16. Place a round cookie cutter of 1.5" diameter in center without pressing down.
  17. Make four diagonal slits, leaving 1.5" center area.
  18. Now take out the cookie cutter. Place 1 tbsp of stuffing in the center. 
  19. Brush a bit of butter on the edges of rolled dough.  
  20. Take one of the sections and cover the side of the filling with it.
  21. Next take the opposite side's section and cover the other side of the filling with it. Press a little on the edges so that it stick to each other.
  22. Next similarly take and cover other two sections and finally give to a rose shape. 
  23. Repeat for rest of the dough balls.
  24. Preheat oven to 180 degree C.
  25. Place all the roses on a baking tray lined with butter paper.
  26. Brush those with milk and sprinkle some white sesame seeds.
  27. Bake the roses for 18-20 minutes at 200 degree C or until the tops are golden.
  28. Take out from oven and brush them with melted butter. 
  29. Serve as it is like me or with some sauce or as an accompaniment with any soup.



Notes :

  • Keep the baked rose buns covered until time of serving so that they stay soft.
  • Proofing the yeast is the most important part.

Continue Reading ...