27 November 2014

Protein Poha

A nutritious Breakfast/Snack has become the norm, where more and more innovative recipes are springing up using the best possible ingredients in the best possible way for healthy yet tasty preparations. 
Make your breakfast colourful with this Protein packed dish.
PROTEIN POHA
Ingredients :
Soaked and cooked White chickpeas - 1 cup
Roasted peanuts - 1 tbsp
Brown Flattened Rice (Thick brown poha) - 1 cup (soaked for an hour at least)
Green chili - 1 (chopped)
Dry Red Chili - 1
Lemon juice - 1 tbsp
Curry leaves - a few
Chopped coriander leaves - a few
Chopped Garlic - 2 tsps
Mustard seeds (rai) - 1 tsp
Onion - 1 chopped
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste

Method :

1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a kadhai. Add mustard seeds and let crackle. Add curry leaves, green chili, red chili and saute for a bit.

2. Add the chopped garlic and onion and saute again for about 3-4 minutes.

3. Add turmeric powder, salt and mix. Now add the poha and stir well. Let cook for about 5 minutes on low heat. You can also add rolled oats if you wish at this point, they cook fast and add to the nutritious value of this dish.

4. Add the white chick peas and stir well. Add the peanut and finally lemon juice. Give it one quick stir and remove from the flame.

5. Serve hot garnished with dhaniya leaves.

Jaljeera

A refreshing drink that's also an excellent appetiser and is a great accompaniment for most Indian chaat (snack) dishes. 

JALJEERA



Ingredients : (For approx 2 glasses of Jaljeera)

Chopped coriander - 50 gms
Green Chilies - 3
Mint leaves - 5 to 6
Lemon juice - 4 tsps
Black Salt - 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste
Chaat masala - 1 tsp
Black Pepper powder to taste
Jeera powder - 1/2 tsp
Roasted and crushed Cumin seeds (Jeera) - as required

Method : 

1. Grind together coriander leaves, mint leaves, green chilies and 2 tsps lemon juice to a fine paste.

2. Transfer to a bowl and add salt, black salt, chaat masala, pepper powder, remaining lemon juice and jeera powder. Mix well.

3. Dilute with as much water as required to make 2 glasses, taking care not to add too much. Stir well, add ice cubes and serve, sprinkled with the crushed jeera.


26 November 2014

Homemade Pizza

Getting the Pizza right, at home, is a challenge I am sure most of us love. My mother loves pizzas with wheat flour base and a thin crust at that. Thought would bite the bullet and try it out this weekend!! 
Above all, I followed the Tawa style of cooking, so no oven used here, unless you want to !!
WHEAT FLOUR PIZZA
Ingredients : (Makes six x 6 inch pizzas)
Whole wheat flour - 2 cups (or add 1 cup maida + 1 cup atta)
Instant Dry yeast - 2 tsps (Use curd if you do not wish to use yeast)
Sugar - 1 tsp
Salt to taste
Curd - 1 tbsp

Tomato sauce :
Olive oil - 2 tbsps
Tomato puree - 1 1/2 cups
Salt to taste
Chili flakes - 1 tsp
Garlic powder - 1 tsp
Dried herbs such as oregano
(You can also use any dry masala of your choice, eg, Garam masala, Tawa Fry, etc to give it an Indian touch!!)

Pizza Topping :
Chopped Capsicum - 1 cup
Sliced Onions - 1 cup
Paneer cubes - 1/2 cup
Grated Mozzarella cheese + any other extra cheese - as required
(One can add any topping of choice apart from these)

Method :

1. Soak yeast in a bowl along with luke warm water, sugar and 1 tsp salt. Stir and leave aside for 10 minutes till it becomes frothy.

2. Meanwhile sift together the flour and salt in a clean bowl. Make a well in the center and add the yeast mixture.
[Note : If you do not wish to use yeast, you can use 1 tsp Baking Pwd, 1 tsp Baking Soda and required curd to knead the dough]

3. Add 1 tbsp curd and knead into a soft but firm dough using sufficient water. Cover with a damp cloth and leave in a warm corner for about 1 1/2 hours or till it doubles in size.

4. Take the dough on a floured counter and punch it lightly. Roll into a cylinder and divide into 6 equal portions. Roll the portions out into pizza bases of desired thickness. Prick all over gently with a fork.

5. Heat a tawa on medium heat. Place the pizza base on the tawa, cover with a lid and cook on 1 side only for about 4-5 minutes. Remove and keep aside. Repeat with other bases as well.

6. For the sauce - heat olive oil in a pan and add the tomato puree. Let simmer on low to medium flame for about 4-5 minutes. We do not want to over-cook the sauce as it will be cooked once more with the pizza.
Add garlic powder, chili flakes, salt to taste and any other dry spice/masala you want to add. Finally add the dried herbs, stir for 1 minute and remove.
[I also tend to blanch the vegetables (except tomato and onion) a little, i.e, about 1/2 cooked so that they are easier to digest, especially for elders and children.]

7. Spread about 1 tbsp sauce on the cooked side of the pizza. Arrange the rest of the toppings leaving 1 cm space from the edges. Finally sprinkle grated cheese, you can be really generous here as a pizza without enough cheese isnt much fun :)

8. Place the prepared pizza base back on the tawa so that the uncooked side is directly on the pan now. Cover - cook on low heat for about 7-8 minutes or till cheese starts bubbling and becomes golden brown. At this point you can use the oven (normal or micro) as well. I used a combination of both so the pizzas got done faster!!

9. Remove the finished pizzas on to the serving plate, cut and serve :)


25 November 2014

Tandoori Style Pasta


Penne is by far my most favourite variety of pasta. As long as I have a few packets of Penne in my larder, I am happy to innovate and improvise with Indo-Italian recipes !!

This one uses Indian masalas and I call it...........

TANDOORI STYLE PASTA



Ingredients :

Boiled Penne - 1 cup
Paneer Cubes - 200 gms
Zucchini or Bottle Gourd - 1/2 cup (sliced & blanched)
Capsicum - 1 (Diced)
Grated cheese - 1 cup
Tandoor masala - 2 tsps (*- see recipe below)
Tomato puree - 1 cup
Chili flakes - 1 tsp
Salt to taste
Crushed black pepper - to taste
Olive oil - 2 tbsps

Method : 

1. Heat olive oil in a wide pan. Add the tomato puree, chili flakes and cook for 5 minutes.

2. Add the blanched zucchini or bottle gourd slices and toss lightly. Add the capsicum and let cook for 5-7 minutes. We do not want the vegetables to become too soft.

3. Add the Tandoor masala, salt and black pepper. Mix and let cook for about 2 minutes.

4. Finally add the paneer cubes and cover-cook for 3-4 minutes. Toss in the boiled penne and mix gently. Switch off the flame and cover for 5 more minutes.
Sprinkle grated cheese and serve hot with warm bread.

[* Tandoor masala - (Recipe courtesy : Indian Food Forever)
1 tsp Cloves Powder 
1/2 tsp grated Nutmeg (Jaiphal) 
1 tsp Mace Powder (Javitri) 
11/2 tblsp Cumin (Jeera) Powder 
2 tblsp ground Coriander (Dhania) 
1 tsp Fenugreek (Methi) Powder 
1 tsp ground Cinnamon (Tuj/Dalchini) 
1 tsp fresh ground Black Pepper (Kalimirchi) 
1 tsp ground brown Cardamom (Elaichi) Seeds 
Grind all these ingredients and store in an airtight jar ]

24 November 2014

Beetroot Patra

Using the leftover mixture from the Beetroot Vada recipe, we used it as a Patra base. Needless to say, it turned out excellent...


BEETROOT PATRA



Ingredients :

Beetroot vada mixture - see recipe link above
Colocasia (Arbi) leaves - 4 to 5
Oil - for shallow frying

Method :

1. Wash and pat dry the arbi leaves. Place it face down on the counter and carefully trim away the thick back vein.

2. Spread the vada mixture evenly over one leaf and place another leaf on top. Repeat the process with as many leaves as you want to layer with, but bear in mind that too many leaves will make the rolling part difficult; so best to limit it to max 4 leaves.

3. Roll the leaves a bit tightly and hold in place. Place on the steamer plate and steam cook for about 10 minutes. Remove and cool slightly.

4. Cut the roll into 1/2 inch thick rolls. Heat enough oil for shallow frying in a pan and fry the patra slices till golden brown on both sides. Alternately, if you are health conscious you can also brush the rolls with oil and fry in the microwave oven.

5. Drain excess oil and serve as desired.

Beetroot Vada

This interesting Vada recipe is another from the Sanjeev Kapoor repository..

BEETROOT VADA



Ingredients :

Beetroot - 1 (grated)
Garlic cloves - 4 to 5
Onion - 2 medium (chopped)
Dry Red Chilies - 2
Bengal gram (Chana dal) - 1 cup (soaked)
Aniseed (Saunf) - 1 tsp
Ginger - 1 inch piece
Curry leaves - 10 to 12
Rice flour - 2 tbsps
Salt to taste

Method :

1. Grind together the soaked gram dal, red chilies, aniseed, garlic, curry leaves and salt.

2. Transfer to a bowl, add the grated beetroot and chopped onions. Mix well.

3. Heat oil on medium heat for frying. Take small rounds of the vada batter and flatten them lightly.

4. Deep fry till golden brown. Take care here re the colour as the natural deep hue of the beetroot might be misleading.

5. Drain excess oil and serve with chutney or ketchup.

23 November 2014

Eggless Chocolate Cake

I have been toying with the idea of using Flax Seed meal as an egg substitute for baking cakes for quite some time now. Thus far, I have used condensed milk, curd and mashed banana to get the texture right.  But after reading through other blogs and articles I decided to try the Flax Seeds route. So picked up a traditional Chocolate Cake recipe (courtesy : BBC Food recipes) that used eggs and set out on my first tryst with the wonder seed.
(Note : The basic formula is 1 tbsp Flax seed meal dissolved in 3 tbsps water to substitute 1 egg. For Flax seed meal, simply dry grind whole flax seeds)



CHOCOLATE CAKE



Ingredients :

Chocolate Sponge:
All Purpose Flour - 115 gms
Baking powder - 1/4 tsp
Flax Seed meal - 3 tbsps (in place of 3 eggs)
Castor sugar - 170 gms
Softened Butter - 170 gms
Cocoa powder - 50 gms
Vanilla essence (optional) - a few drops
Salt - a pinch

Icing :
Chopped Dark chocolate - 1 cup
Cream - 1/4 cup

Sugar Syrup :
Sugar - 3 tbsps
Water - 1/4 cup

Method : 

1. Soak the Flax seed meal in 9 tbsps water and keep aside for 5 minutes.

2. Sieve together the all purpose flour, salt, baking powder and cocoa powder in a mixing bowl.

3. In another bowl cream the butter and sugar till the latter is well dissolved. Pour in the flax seed mix , vanilla essence and whisk well.




4. Gradually add the flour mix gradually into the butter mixture. Cut and fold leaving no lumps.

5. Pour into a greased cake mould and bake in a pre-heated microwave oven for 9 minutes at 170 deg C. (I use a combination microwave, so a safe technique I use to preheat it is to place a micro-proof bowl with some water and run the micro for 30 seconds)

6. Meanwhile prepare the sugar syrup by dissolving the sugar in the 1/4 cup water. Prepare the icing as well by melting the chocolate pieces in the micro or on a double boiler, cooling it slightly and stirring in the cream.

7. Remove and cool the cake. Pour the sugar syrup as required to keep the cake moist and cut the bitterness. Use icing as desired and serve.

21 November 2014

Pepper Pulao


A recipe in a ..erm, recipe book appeals to the senses even more when we see it actually being prepared on TV or in a video. This yummy and 'hot' Pulao with the spiciness of Pepper and Red Chili is from one among the thousands from the Sanjeev Kapoor repository !!
It was so inspiring we just had to try it that very weekend. Served with crisps and raita, it was simply AWESOME !!!


PEPPER PULAO



Ingredients :

Cooked rice - 2 cups
Cumin seeds (Jeera) - 2 tsps
Dry Red Chili - 1
Whole Pepper corns - 10 to 12
Onion (chopped) - 1
Bengal gram (Chana dal) - 1 tsp
Split Black gram (Urad dal) - 1 tsp
Mustard seeds (Rai) - 1 tsp
Salt to taste
Curry leaves - a few
Roasted peanuts for garnishing

Method : 

1. Heat a pan and dry roast the red chili, pepper and jeera. Cool and grind to a coarse powder.

2. Heat ghee in a larger pan, add chana dal, urad dal, rai and peanuts. Saute lightly.

3. Add the chopped onion, curry leaves and fry till the onion sweats a bit or becomes golden brown.

4. Add salt to taste and cooked rice and mix well. Remove from the fire. Finally add the ground spices, a little at a time, and mix the rice gently.
Transfer to a serving bowl and serve hot as desired.


20 November 2014

Orange Skin Stew

Oranges are amazing therapeutic fruits and irresistibly tempting too. Remember the times when while travelling in buses and trains, or waiting at a bus stop, or even in a classroom, someone nearby would peel an orange and that would make all heads turn?? Well..that's the aromatic power of an orange!! 
I could go on about the benefits of the fruit in its pulp and juice forms, but I would like to share a recipe of a stew made using Orange skin. This stew is quite a regular feature at home whenever oranges are aplenty. 

Having one of those days when you have a sour taste in the mouth or don't feel like eating much? Try this stew and watch how your palate miraculously improves!! It goes especially well with dosas and curd rice. 


ORANGE SKIN STEW


Ingredients :

Ripe Orange skin - 1/2 cup
Green chilies - 2 (medium)
Hing - 1/4 tsp
Oil - 1 tbsp
Salt to taste
Turmeric powder (Haldi) - 1/2 tsp
Tamarind - lemon size piece
Roasted fenugreek (methi) powder - 1/2 tsp (The methi seeds should only be lightly roasted)
Jaggery - pea-size piece (optional)

Tempering :
Oil - 1 tsp
Mustard seeds (Rai) - 1 tsp

Method :

1. Gently scrape the excess fibre off the orange skin and chop them roughly into small pieces.

2. Extract tamarind juice up to 1 1/2 cups. Keep aside.

3. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a saucepan and add rai. Let crackle. Add slit green chilies and saute for a bit.

4. Add the chopped orange skin, turmeric powder, hing and saute for 2-3 minutes.

5. Pour the tamarind extract over this along with salt. Let simmer over medium flame till the orange bits are softer (approx about 10-12 minutes).

6. Add a pea-size piece of jaggery and stir till it dissolves. This is an optional step, but the jaggery not only enhances the flavour of the orange but also mellows the spice of the chilies.
If the consistency is too runny, dissolve 1 tsp rice flour in 2 tbsps water and add to the stew. Let simmer for about 5 minutes more.

7. Once the stew thickens, add the roasted fenugreek powder and stir once. Remove from fire and serve as desired.
Note : It is important not to over-roast the methi seeds as it can spoil the taste of the stew.


Sambhar (Type I)

Sambhar, the ultimate accompaniment for Dosas and Idlis. Sambhar, a lentil preparation that's prepared in so many forms across South India. Some use tamarind, some use only tomatoes, Udupi style, made with ground spices or just ready-made Sambhar powder, the list is almost endless and delicious.

Following are 2 variations that we usually make at home, one by grinding fresh spices and the other slightly simpler as it uses Sambhar powder.
SAMBHAR

TYPE I (Using Ground spices)
[Type II using Sambhar powder can be found here]

Ingredients :
Oil - 1/2 tsp
Coriander seeds (Sabut Dhaniya) - 2 tsps
Dry Red Chilies - 3
Asafoetida powder (Hing) - 1/4 tsp
Fenugreek (Methi) seeds - 1/4 tsp
Grated coconut - 2 tbsps
Tomato - 1 small
Split Bengal gram (Chana dal) - 1 1/2 tsps
Split Pigeon peas (Arahar dal) - 1/2 cup
Boiled/Blanched vegetables of your choice - typically drumsticks, capsicum, white radish or Knol Khol(Kohl Rabi). If using capsicum, you can directly cook it in tamarind water, no need to pre-cook.
Tamarind - lemon size portion
Salt to taste

Tempering :
Mustard seeds (Rai) - 1/2 tsp
Fenugreek (Methi)seeds - 1/2 tsp
Sesame (Til) Oil - 1 tsp
Asafoetida powder (Hing) - pinch
Curry leaves - as required

Method :
1. Pressure cook arahar dal with a little turmeric powder. Extract tamarind juice using water as required, we need about 1 1/2 cups.

2. Heat 1/2 tsp oil in a small pan and roast coriander seeds, dry red chilies, fenugreek seeds and chana dal till golden brown. Take care not to over-roast.

3. Now add hing and coconut bits. Stir once and remove. Let cool. Grind in a mixer along with 1 small tomato. Keep aside.

4. Use a thick-bottomed saucepan and add the tamarind extract to it. Add salt to taste, curry leaves and if using capsicum, add it as well. Let simmer on low flame till raw aroma leaves the tamarind extract. (roughly 7-10 minutes). If using other cooked vegetables(minus capsicum) add them at this point.

5. Add the ground spices paste and stir. Check salt. Now add the cooked pigeon peas/Arahar dal and stir well so it becomes a homogeneous mixture.
Note : If consistency is slightly runny, dissolve 1 tsp rice flour in 2 tsps water and add to the sambhar. Let simmer for 5-6 minutes more and switch off the gas flame.

6. For tempering, heat 1 tsp oil and add mustard seeds, let crackle. Add methi seeds and give it a very quick stir taking care not to let the methi become too brown else it will spoil the overall taste. Add hing and curry leaves. Remove and pour over the sambhar.

Transfer Sambhar to the serving bowl and garnish with dhaniya leaves. Serve as desired.


Sambhar (Type II)

Picking up from the earlier recipe for Sambhar using fresh ground spices, the second method is using ready made Sambhar powder. Since we are using a dry powder this variation needs little extra portion of lentils (Arahar dal) to add to the texture, consistency and quantity, but cooking time is reduced.

SAMBHAR



TYPE II (Using Sambhar powder)
[Type I using ground spices can be found here ]

Ingredients :

Tamarind - lemon size
Boiled/Blanched vegetables of your choice - typically drumsticks, capsicum, white radish or Knol Khol(Kohl Rabi). If using capsicum, you can directly cook it in tamarind water, no need to pre-cook.
Salt to taste
Sambhar Powder - 2 tsps
Split pigeon peas (Arahar dal) - 3/4 cup (Pressure cooked)
Curry leaves for garnishing

Tempering :
Mustard seeds (Rai) - 1 tsp
Hing - 1.4 tsp
Fenugreek (Methi) seeds - 1/2 tsp
Oil - 1 tsp

Method :

1. Extract about 1 1/2 cups of tamarind juice. Add it to a thick-bottomed sauce pan.

2. Add salt to taste, curry leaves and sambhar powder at this stage itself. If using capsicum, add it in as well. Let simmer on low flame till raw aroma leaves the tamarind juice. (roughly 7-10 minutes). If using other cooked vegetables(minus capsicum) add them at this point.

3. Add the cooked arahar dal and stir till the dal is well mixed with the tamarind extract. Let simmer for 10 more minutes and remove from the fire.

4. Prepare tempering by heating 1 tsp oil, add mustard seeds and let crackle. Now add hing and finally methi seeds taking care not to let the seeds become too brown. Pour over the sambhar and transfer to a serving bowl.
Garnish with chopped fresh dhaniya and serve.

19 November 2014

Crisp Dosas

Crisp dosas aren't exactly rocket science !! All it takes is the correct ratio of ingredients and right amount of resting time..

DOSA



(Makes roughly 15 standard-size dosas)
Ingredients :

Raw rice - 2 cups
Whole, white urad dal - 1/4 cup
Flattened Rice - 1/2 cup
Methi (Fenugreek) seeds - 1/4 tsp
Sabudana (Sago) - 1/4 cup
Grated coconut - 1/4 cup (optional)
Salt to taste

Usually we tend to use the leftover idli batter for dosas as well, after adding a little water for a thinner consistency. However, if you wish to have real soft yet crispy dosas, then making a little extra effort to use the above ingredients and the following method will pay off wonderfully!!!

Method : 

1. Wash and soak rice and urad dal. Soak along with methi seeds for 1 hour.

2. Wash the flattened rice very lightly, just enough to remove impurities and in another bowl, soak along with sabudana for 1 hour. 

3. Grind this to a fine batter using the water used for soaking. A mixer works well for this batter. 



4. Transfer to a bowl or vessel, add salt to taste and mix well. Leave aside for 6 to 8 hours to ferment. 

5. Prepare dosas as desired.

17 November 2014

Jhatpat Chaat

On a busy day, if you are wondering what to put together for a quick and healthy chaat this could help!!! Crispy brown bread instead of Papdi and fruits make for a healthy and wholesome snack..


JHATPAT CHAAT



Ingredients :

Boiled potato - 2 (medium), diced
White chickpeas - 1 cup (Soaked overnight and drained)
Fresh Pomegranate seeds - as required
Chopped apple - as required
Brown bread slices - 4 to 5
Boiled sweet corn - 1 cup
Onion - 1 (finely chopped)
Green chutney - as required
Tomato ketchup - as required
Sev or other Farsaan (optional)
Jeera powder
Chaat Masala
Chopped Coriander (optional)

Method :

1. Cut the bread slices into squares and roast without using oil till crisp on a tawa, or in a microwave.

2. In a bowl, mix together the diced potato, chickpeas, pomegranate seeds, diced apples, boiled corn and brown bread squares.

3. Add the green chutney and ketchup and mix lightly. Sprinkle Jeera powder and chaat masala. Mix lightly again.

4. Just before serving, garnish with the Sev/farsaan, chopped onion and chopped dhaniya. Serve.

10 November 2014

No Bake Chocolate Fudge Cake


On a quiet Sunday afternoon when the onset of Monday weighs down a corner of your mind, nothing like a comfort food to lighten things up!! I set out to make a simple tea-cake while my mother suggested a no-bake fudge she had seen on TV. I had never tried a chocolate fudge at home before and was more than willing to give it a try. And now..we can't stop at one!!


CHOCOLATE AND NUTS FUDGE




Ingredients : 

Butter - 200 gms
Dark Chocolate - 200 gms
Instant Coffee Powder - 2 tbsps
Brown Sugar - 100 gms
Crushed Digestive Biscuits - 200 gms (coarsely powdered)
Roasted nuts (Almonds, walnuts and raisins) - 1/2 cup (Ground coarsely)


Method : 

1. Heat a thick-bottomed pan and melt butter. When semi-melted, add the dark chocolate and stir till both melt and blend in well.

2. Add the brown sugar and continue to stir till sugar melts. Add the instant coffee powder while stirring the mixture simultaneously. 

3. Now add the crushed and coarsely powdered digestive biscuits and stir again. Finally add the roasted and ground dry fruits and give it a final stir for 1 minute.

4. Remove from the gas top and pour into an aluminium cake tin. Tap gently on a flat surface and sprinkle some more dry fruits on top (optional).

5. Let cool and set for about 2-3 hours. Cut and serve as desired.


7 November 2014

Brown Bread Pudding

Finding a breakfast recipe that is quick to assemble, prepare and of course, healthy is almost an everyday challenge for most of us. A safe and popular bet is to go the Continental way with cereals, bread, eggs and fruits, though Indian food lovers would argue otherwise - but hey! Another debate for another day :)

This morning I was inspired by a pudding recipe shown on TV once, using bread, milk and fruits. Modified it a bit with what I had available and was really pleased with the delicious result - and it was wiped clean off the plates in 5 minutes :)


BROWN BREAD BREAKFAST PUDDING



Ingredients : (Serves 3)

Brown bread slices - 4 (Trim the sides if the baking dish is narrow, but do not discard)
Ripe bananas - 3
Milk - 1/2 cup
Condensed milk - 1/4 cup
Muesli / Cereals - 1/4 cup
Raisins - a few
Sliced almonds - a few
Honey - 2 tbsps

Method : 

1. In a mixer blend the bananas, milk and condensed milk, leaving no lumps.

2. In a bowl, mix the honey, some of the raisins and almond slices along with the cereals of choice.

2. In a baking dish, arrange 2 of the trimmed bread slices and pour a ladle-ful of the milk mix coating the slices evenly. It is optional to arrange fruits over this if you desire. (The more the merrier :) ) Arrange the trimmed bread edges along the sides as well.

3. Place the remaining 2 slices and again cover with the rest of the milk sauce. Top off with the honey-cereals mixture and sprinkle some more cereals over the top if you like the crust to be crunchy.

4. Bake in a microwave oven @ 170-180 deg C for 8-10 minutes.
Remove, cool for about 3-4 minutes, cut and serve as desired.



3 November 2014

Brown Bread Rasmalai

What's life without a sweet touch. Desserts are an integral part of our diet, well..whether or not we are on a diet!! Even if we are, we tend to find shortcuts and supplements to convince our calorie meters !!!
I have always wanted to try out Bengali sweets at home, but yet to break bread with one...However, when I chanced upon this simple to make Rasmalai recipe on TV, albeit with a twist, I knew this was my near breakthrough. Though the recipe calls for plain white bread, I tried it with brown bread just to see how different it would turn out (and because that's what I had at home!!). Must say that the results were quite pleasing and I am not that easily pleased :)
Original recipe courtesy : http://www.zeekhanakhazana.com/recipes/bread-rasmalai.html


                                                         BROWN BREAD RASMALAI




Ingredients :

Brown bread slices - 7 to 8
Almond powder - 1/2 cup
Milk - 3 to 4 tbsps + 1 1/2 cups
Condensed Milk - 2 1/2 tbsps
Saffron strands - a few
Almond flakes - for garnishing

Method :

1. Trim the edges of the bread slices and blend to a powder in a mixer.

2. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and add the almond powder and 3 to 4 tbsps milk. Mix gently. Take small portions of this mix in hand and make medium sized rasmalais. Keep aside.

3. Heat a pan and add 1 1/2 cups milk along with the saffron strands. Simmer on low to medium heat. After about 7-8 minutes, stir in the condensed milk and keep stirring till slightly thicker. Remove and let cool.

4. Just before serving, arrange the bread rasmalais on a serving plate or bowl and gently pour the milk syrup on top. Decorate with almond flakes and serve. (Best served chilled).