Sunday, December 30, 2018

Banana Bread Waffles with Blueberry and Quinoa

Weekend mornings are about some hot breakfast served and all of us sitting down together to have some talk over breakfast. When compared to the weekdays, where there is no sitting down for breakfast, I overlook for weekends to come to have some family breakfast and also gives me an opportunity to try new things for breakfast :). This waffle comes together in just minutes and its another recipe to use up those overripe bananas yet not let the consumer know about the presence of overripe bananas in it :).




The little crunch of quinoa and a bite into some juicy blueberries is an additional bonus of these waffles which makes it a joy to have it for breakfast. We love the waffles that we get in Costco and so I got inspired to try this recipe and I must say that this recipe is just the alternative to those waffles. Try it and let me know if you like it. 


Ingredients

  1. 2/3 cups of whole wheat flour
  2. 2 spoons of corn flour
  3. 1/2 tsp of baking powder
  4. 1/4 tsp of cinnamon powder
  5. 1/4 tsp of salt
  6. 2 ripe bananas
  7. 2 tbsps of brown sugar 
  8. 1 tbsp of oil
  9. 1/2 tsp of vanilla essence
  10. 1/4 cup of quinoa
  11. 3/4 cup of blueberries 
  12. Melted butter to grease the waffle trays
Method
  • Mix all the ingredients 1-5.
  • Mash the bananas. Add the brown sugar, oil and vanilla essence. Mix it together.
  • Add the dry ingredients and quinoa to the wet mixture and mix it well. Finally add in the blueberries and stir it in.
  • Preheat your waffle maker as per the instructions. Once preheated, grease the waffle trays with melted butter. Pour a ladle of batter(eyeball the amount as per the size of your waffle trays) on to the waffle tray, spreading or covering the cubes of waffle tray with batter. If you are not particular about the shape of the waffle then you could avoid covering all the cubes. 
  • Smooth out the batter with the back of the ladle. Cover the waffle maker and cook it untill crisp and brown. 
  • Remove it onto a plate and serve it with some maple syrup. This waffle is a little sweet and flavorful because of the bananas and Blueberries. So you could choose to have it as is. It tastes yum!

Tips
  1. Do not open your waffle maker for the initial 2-3 minutes of the cooking, else it would go shapeless and ruin the waffles.
  2. Waffles are best served warm. However, you could freeze it too and just reheat it in the oven.





Monday, December 24, 2018

Tutti Fruiti Cookies

When its the happiest time of the year, you got to cook something that would look happy too. These cookies bring out that prettiness in the form of mosaic pattern of red, green and yellow that makes it so perfect to bake in this season.




Not just in its looks, they taste great too. Moreover, it is very easy to make. I usually do these for parties, where in I just make and chill the dough the previous day so that all I got to do is just slice and pop it in the oven on the day of the party. That way I don't have to deal with the messier part of making these cookies. At the same time, serve these cookies fresh for the party. 


Ingredients
  1. 1 stick of softened unsalted butter
  2. 1/3 cup of sugar
  3. 1/2 tsp of Orange zest
  4. 3/4 cup of tutti fruiti
  5. 3/4 tsp fo vanilla extract
  6. A pinch of salt
  7. 1 cup of flour
Method
  • Beat the softened butter and sugar untill creamy. Add the orange zest, tutti fruiti, vanilla extract, salt and flour.
  • Beat it again untill combined.
  • Remove the dough on to the counter top and shape it into a log of about 1 1/2 inch in thickness. Wrap it in a cling wrap and chill it in the refrigerator for about an hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  • Slice the dough log into cookies of even thickness and spread it on a baking sheet.
  • Bake it in the oven for about 12-15 minutes or untill they are golden brown around the edges.
  • Remove it onto a wired rack to cool down before you store it in a air tight container.
Tips
  1. Chilling the dough helps to let the dough turn firm to help in cutting it evenly. So do not skip on that one.
  2. If using salted butter, avoid adding the salt in the recipe.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Cranberry Pickle ~ No cook version

If you want to stock on some pickle without much effort then this pickle is the best. Effortless and tasty - two characteristics of this pickle that makes me make it every year during this time. Pickle is not mandatory for me to have with my meals generally, but during Advent/Lent it is one thing that I would prefer with my meals. And this cranberry pickle is the best. 



The very first time I made it, I was a little hesitant how it would turn out to be and hence had made it in very small quantity and it was so awesome that it vanished in less than a weeks time. Now, every cranberry season has to have this pickle made at home and in larger amount too. Here's the recipe to the awesome cranberry pickle.

  

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Cranberry and Pistachio Cookies ~ Eggless

Eggless christmas treats is always a thing of worry for me when I pack the christmas treats for friends who don't consume eggs esp. because I believe that eggs is an unavoidable ingredient in cakes and cookies. Their absence is always felt in terms of quality of a baked goodie. But this cookie proves it all wrong to me. Its eggless and I can't tell you how many I ate at one go and so did my two boys. They are so good with the bite of cranberry and pistachio as a bonus. They hardly last at our place.






I have a recent crush on these cranberries. I didn't like them earlier but since last year I am kind of hooked. I can't get enough of them, either in the form of fresh or dried ones. They have been impressive every single form that I have tried it. These cookies are just one of them. The recipe for these awesome cookies is as below.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Swedish Chicken Meatballs

Happy Thankgiving everyone ! 

These meatballs were clicked last Thanksgiving. I am glad that I am able to atleast post it this year. With the new schedule/routine in life I have just not been able to take care of my blog baby. Blogging has really taken a back seat, but cooking and clicking had not ..he he.. So, hopefully I should be atleast making an attempt to post once in a week. 








It just seemed ages when I logged in today to pen down this post. It really felt like I was in a happy place which gave me a platform to make new friends across the globe, an encouragement to try new things and ideas, and a place which helped me keep myself busy and creative. How can I be not thankful to all the people who have encouraged me to carry on with the blog. How can I be not thankful to this little space which gave me so much happiness by providing new friends, opportunities, etc. Hence this post is dedicated to all those who have been with me and my blog Palaharam in every little way possible. 

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Buttery Dinner Rolls


That aroma of freshly baked dinner rolls is something that I can't explain in words but if you have baked it yourselves you would know, how heavenly it is. I am not exaggerating, but the very thought of it is making my mouth water. I had never seen or done bread baking untill I came to the US, but everytime I passed by the bakery in our small township that I grew up in, the smell of the bread getting baked has always left me tempting. Bitting into a warm bread having spread some butter, which melts with the warmth of the bread slice is the simplest of pleasures.














Getting the perfect dinner rolls was always a challenge. Yes the dinner rolls would be soft when warm, but when they cool down, they would turn dry and hard. After couple of trial and errors, I finally landed on this recipe and its a keeper. Both my boys are not bread lovers. They would like it if dunked into some spicy curry to pair with. But with these dinner rolls, I just saw them taking and bitting into them even without anything spread on them. They being not a big fan of bread, but still loved these dinner rolls , I knew I had to document it before I forget the ratios. So here it is - the recipe to soft and buttery dinner rolls.


Saturday, October 20, 2018

Tomato Rice

Something instant to cook on a busy weekday, at the same time delicious and approved by the family, is a recipe that I always lean on when tired and have hardly any energy to enter the kitchen. If its liked by all at home equally then you don't have to see people frowning at the dinner table. This Tomato rice is one such recipe that we can have for dinner after a long day at work - happy faces and most importantly, easy to put together. 











Some papad/chips and little bit of pickle is all what you need to pair with this delicious tomato rice to enjoy your meal. When I started my kitchen garden last year, I planted a tomato plant. It would produce flowers but nothing got converted to tomato, which made me think that either it is a flower plant :D or may be my hands aren't good enough for gardening. Its not gonna bear fruit. But this year, thankfully, if not it surplus, we got a decent harvest of tomatoes. And when making tomato rice, with the tomatoes from our own garden, it gets even more fulfilling. At dinner table, you can see me repeat it over and over again "it has tomatoes from our own garden". And my little harvester gets even more interested in having his tomato rice since his little hands were also involved in producing the tomatoes :).



Now off to the recipe. This recipe needs the everyday pantry items, so you need not just wait for to get the ingredients before you try it. So try it for todays lunch or dinner and I bet you won't regret.




Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 cup of white rice
  2. 1 1/2 cup of chopped tomatoes
  3. 1/2 cup of finely chopped red onion
  4. 1 tbsp of finely chopped green chilly
  5. 1 tsp of ginger garlic paste
  6. 5-6 mint leaves, finely chopped
  7. 2 tbsp of finely chopped coriander leaves
  8. About 2 3/4 cups of water
  9. 1/2 tsp of turmeric powder
  10. 1/2 tsp of red chilly powder
  11. 1/2 tsp of coriander powder
  12. 3/4 tsp of black pepper powder
  13. Salt to taste
  14. Coriander/ Mint leaves for garnishing
For tempering
  1. 1 tbsp of oil
  2. 1/2 tsp of mustard seeds
  3. 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds
  4. 2-3 dry red chillies
  5. 1/2 tsp of fenugreek seeds
  6. 1 sprig of curry leaves
Method
  • Wash and strain the rice. Keep it aside.
  • Heat a pan. Pour in the oil. Once the oil gets hot, add the mustard seeds and let it splutter. Now add the fenugreek seeds, cumin seeds, ginger garlic paste, green chillies, dry red chillies and curry leaves. Saute it until the rawness is gone.
  • Now add the onion and saute it. Once onion starts turning dull and translucent, add the chopped mint leaves and coriander leaves, and saute it.
  • Add the tomatoes and stir it. Let it reduce and cook. Add the turmeric powder , coriander powder and black pepper powder. Saute and cook untill the tomatoes are all soft and the mixture looks like a paste.
  • Add the rice, water and salt. Stir it to spread it evenly.
  • Cover and cook on medium low flame untill the water evaporates completely. Turn off the heat.
  • Garnish it with coriander/mint leaves and serve it hot with some raita and chips of your choice.
Tips
  1. Using basmati rice would enhance the taste.
  2. You could add some urad dal to the tempering to enhance the taste.
  3. Keep a close watch when cooking rice. The cooking time and water required would vary according to the type of rice used.


Saturday, September 29, 2018

Poha

With temperatures dropping, all I want to do is just snooze and snooze the alarm every 5 mins. I understand that it is not actually letting me rest as I would want to, because it will keep on interrupting me by ringing every other 5 mins. But still I keep doing it every single day. It is just so hard to pull your eyelids apart when you are resting under the cozy blanket. Anyways, winter mornings get better with a warm breakfast. I still recollect Poha to be a delicacy during winters. Because my mom would pluck some fresh coriander leaves to garnish the hot poha. But with the coriander leaves available year round now, I have the luxury to make it whenever I want to. Poha and some steaming chai- isn’t that just the best thing to start your day with . 







grew up eating poha as a tea time snack on cold and wintery evenings. I was not a great fan then. When I landed in pune for my job, every other day I would choose to get poha for breakfast from the canteen. They were not as good as my mom used to make and hence brought in the realization of the value of home made food.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Corn Dog Muffins

My kido is a big fan of corn dogs. Initially he would recognize the stores that we have bought corn dogs at, and would begin asking for corn dogs at the very sight of those stores. These days, as he learnt reading on his own, he can read the menu or displays and even though he has no clue about that eating place, he would tell us that corn dogs are available there and we should get it.








Making it at home, would require deep fryer and so that was definitely not an option for us. But when I saw this baked version, I just had to make these at home. I did not have a mini muffin pan, so I baked these in the usual muffin pans. 

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Grilled Chicken ~ Mediterranean Style

We did grill more frequently this year than the past years. But, somehow I kept pushing away or postponing the publishing of posts. But finally, as the boys are catching up on a movie, here I go drafting this post, to let go. 












If you are looking for easy grilling recipe, both in marination as well as cooking, then this is one keeper. Very basic ingredients are needed for its marination. Plus, its healthy too. Include these grilled chicken in your wraps or as sides - they are superb either way. 


Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Pita Bread

My first attempt at Mediterranean food was in the initial days of pregnancy which were really hard. I ordered fancy things but I ended up eating only pita bread dipped in hummus. And then somehow I never returned to the place all throughout my pregnancy and even post that, the new mother gets so busy that somehow trying mediterranean food never crossed my mind. But in the past 2 years, we have been indulging a lot in it. Its one among our favorite cuisines to try and have whenever we think of dining out or even trying something different at home other than the daily Indian food. All of us love it.





We used to buy the pita bread from grocery stores to make our wraps. One day we thought of trying it ourselves. I had least expectation of it getting all puffed up. But surprisingly, all of them puffed up with the same perfection that I quickly made a note of the recipe. Well why not, right? Such recipes are keepers that you may always want to document it. And this recipe has never disappointed me even once. So here is it. You should think twice or may be thrice before you get pita breads from outside, when you have such easy recipes at hand :).

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Cherry Icecream

The weather seems to be getting colder day by day. We didn't have unbearable summer this year. Not at all complaining about it. But the thought that winter seems to be so close, is not at all encouraging to me. Plus, some of our favorite fruits and berries are also vanishing from the market. So to bid goodbye to our family favorite cherry for this year, I thought I should post this cherry icecream that we enjoyed multiple times this summer. 









We love eating cherries as is. But for a change give it other forms like galette, jams or even this icecream. You cannot have enough of those juicy and sweet cherries. They definitely are addictive. This recipe is not even a bit difficult, but I must suggest you to make it in large quantities for your crowd is definitely going to go for multiple servings.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Ethakka Tholi Thoran / Raw Banana Peel Stir Fry With Coconut

One of the most utilized plant is banana. If you have a banana tree at home, you would know how each part of it is never neglected or disgarded. Banana leaf is used to serve, banana flower can be used in making cutlets or stir fry, stem gets edible in the form of another yummy stir fry, banana itself can be either eaten raw or cooked...the most favorite being banana chips and even the banana peel can turn into a very delicious stir fry to be paired with rice. One banana tree and its multiple uses. Isn't it amazing?







Remember, couple of weeks ago I had posted the recipe for banana chips. And how I had asked to save the banana peel to make a stir fry. A bit delayed though, but still I made it a point to share the recipe for it here before Onam. If you happen to make the banana chips for onam sadya, then do not throw away the banana peel, they indeed make a very delicious thoran, that can be served for your sadya too. So here you go, the recipe for it is here.

Sambar

Sambar is one unavoidable item on the sadya menu. With onam fast approaching, I thought sharing a sambar recipe would be apt. Whenever I complain that Jacob should get more involved in the kitchen and should take up interest in cooking, he always picks on me saying "who taught you to make sambar ?". Well those initial days of marriages while I was learning to cook to feed our stomach, the sambar preparations were done by Jacob. He is such a sambar lover. I would always prefer moru kachiyathu over sambar for rice. But I guess, as year pass by living with a sambar lover, I too have started to like sambar.



Well this recipe is not the traditional method of sambar preparation. Usually, the sambar powder is fried in the oil along with tempering and added to the sambar . I avoid doing it, to cut down the consumption of oil. Also I find it as an easier way to prepare, without the fear of burning the sambar powder, especially when you have too many things on the menu for sadya and hurrying, things go wrong sometimes. So try my version of sambar if you would like to, for this onam and let me know if you liked it.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Baingan Bhaja/ Begun Bhaja/ Pan Fried Aubergine

We all love to have food from restaurants. Well who will not, right? You get to taste something apart from everyday food....somebody else made it so you have not slogged or shed a sweat in making it...plus you don't have to do the dishes :). But we love the restaurant food for may be a couple of times in a row. If you happen to travel for couple of days and end up eating from outside every single meal, everyday, then you might picture even the simplest of homely foods as heaven. 












This Baigan Bhaja is so simple to make that it can get ready in just minutes. Like I said, when you are tired, post travel or even at the end of a hectic day at work, this simple dish can just cheer you up and make your meal so delicious and finger licking without putting in too much effort. Steaming rice, some tadka daal and this Baigan Bhaja... isn't that a picture of a homely meal that could satisfy the soul, craving for some comfort food. Here is how I make it. 
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