Sunday, 28 August 2011

Crispy chilli baby corn

About the food:

This is a Chinese recipe, perfect to be a starter. This is really easy to make, and is absolutely delicious.

Preparation time: 10 mins.

Cooking time: 30 mins.

Ingredients: (serves 4)

1 bowl baby corn, sliced through the middle, and then in half
1 bowl mushroom, sliced
1 medium onion, diced
4-5 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup corn flour
3 tbsp red/white wine
2 tbsp soya sauce
1 tbsp black pepper powder
2 green chillies, chopped


1. Put oil in a pan. Fry the garlic until light golden.Take it out of the oil and reserve.

2. Part boil the baby corn and the mushroom separately for about 5 mins. This makes them soft and tender.

3.Coat the baby corn and the mushrooms with corn flour and deep fry until golden in colour. For best results, fry them separately. Remove them from the oil.

4. Heat a fresh pan and add some oil. Add the onion and green chillies and saute for 3 mins. Add the baby corn and mushroom. Add garlic, soya sauce, wine, a pinch of salt and black pepper. Mix them well.

5. Remove from flame and serve it hot.

Best served as a party starter. Goes well with baked garlic breads.

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Misti Doi (Sweet yogurt-pudding)

About the food:

Ask any Bengali, and s/he would crave for this dish. Bengalis are renowned for their sweet teeth, and this dish is at the pinnacle of their desires. Any Bengali meal would finish with a generous helping of Misti-doi with soft and squeezy rossogollas: with many bengalis, they are part of even the regular home meals: my family-in-laws have them usually for instance. Living abroad, and being away from home, I craved for misti-doi: I could not get it in the market, and this made me even more home-sick. I learnt this recipe from a dear friend of mine, and guess what? She is a Bengali. I am extremely grateful to her for sharing this recipe, and I could not believe how easy it is to prepare. Try it, you would be amazed by the grandeur of the Bengali cuisine.

Preparation time: 1 hour

Cooking time: 30 mins.

Ingredients: (serves 6)
Greek style Yogurt: 500 ml.
Condensed milk: 400 ml.
Evaporated milk: 200 ml.
Dry fruits (cashew, pistachio) (optional): finely chopped.


A. Steaming.     

1. Hang the yogurt in a fine cloth for about 1 hour to let the water drain. Greek yogurt is best for this recipe as it has less water content, which makes the doi really smooth and thick.

2. Mix the drained yogurt, condensed and the evaporated milk and mix well until smooth. Add the dry fruits. Pour it in a heat-proof serving bowl. Cover it with a cling film so that water cannot enter. You can also use a tight lid if you don't have the cling film handy, but opening the lid later becomes a toil: pour cold water over the lid to cool it, before trying to open.

3. Put water in a steamer/ pressure cooker and steam it for about 20-25 mins.

4. Take the bowl out and chill it in a refrigerator for 2-3 hrs. serve at the end of a meal, or eat it
straight away!

B. Microwave    

Learning to prepare this in microwave has brought  a revolutionary change in my life, as I can now prepare it under 10 minutes! For this follow the step 1 as in steaming and then the following steps:

1. Put the mixture in a microwave proof glass container, preferably one with a flat bottom and mix until smooth.

2. Adjusting the power and time in the microwave is the whole essence of this preparation, which can be quite tricky in the beginning. In my microwave which has 800watts maximum power, I cook it at  50% power for about 3 minutes, and then at 80% power for about 1-2 minutes, checking after every 30 seconds. This took me a while to adjust. You know it is done when touching it nothing sticks to your finger, and as well you have to be careful not to overcook such that the yogurt surface breaks.

3. Take it out of microwave and let it cool and put it in fridge to serve chilled.

You can also prepare them in small pots for individual servings, and that can really impress the guests. For this put about 4 pots in the microwave, and it would take between 2-3 minutes for one lot.

Pamper yourself and your guests with misti doi and feel accomplished!