Saturday, May 26, 2018

Dulce De Leche

For a long time, Dulce de leche was on my list of things to try. But I had heard of just two methods, one was to slave over a stove top for four hours and the other cooking a can of condensed milk under pressure - unopened. Neither seemed worth the effort. A few months back everything changed. I bought a new Instant pot pressure cooker right in the middle of the holiday season and joined a Facebook group of IP users. Everyone was trying Dulce de leche. This is my attempt.


I bought a pint sized mason jar and a can of Eagle brand 14 oz. condensed milk. I poured the milk in the mason jar and cooked it in the IP. Dulce de leche was ready. It was that simple. If you have an instant pot and a sweet tooth, you have to try the recipe.

You will need
1 can condensed milk (I used the 14 oz Eagle brand sweet condensed milk)
You will also need a mason jar. I used a one pint sized jar.

Wash and clean the jar. Open the can of milk and empty the contents in the jar.


Place the top on the jar, then place the lid and screw into place until you feel it resisting but not too tight. Place a trivet in the IP, I used the trivet that came with the IP. Place the jar over the trivet. Pour water around the jar until it is the same height as the milk in the jar, about half way up the jar.


Set the IP in manual mode for 35 minutes on High. NPR (natural pressure release) for 15 minutes. What that means is that you do not touch the IP until it finishes cooking and then starts counting up. You stop when it counts up to 15. Thereafter, you can release the pressure slowly by turning the value to venting. Once the pin drops and the pressure is released, open the IP and remove the jar. Careful, the jar is hot. Place the jar on the counter top to cool.


I let it cool for an hour and a half on the counter top then placed it in the refrigerator. Let it cool for a few hours. The Dulce de leche is ready!


Enjoy!

Note: If you like a thinner consistency, cook it for about 30 minutes, no more.





Enjoy!







This is my entry for week four, day three of BM #88 for the theme Bookmarked recipes. Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#88.


Friday, May 25, 2018

Onion Kulcha

Kulcha has been on my wishlist of recipes to try for a very long time. But for some reason I had never really made it before. My daughter was thrilled with the simplicity of the recipe and we enjoyed the Onion Kulcha a lot.


Some time back I posted recipes from a flatbread platter I recreated after being inspired at Sanaa, the restaurant in the Animal Kingdom Lodge at Disney World. I was very impressed with the custom wooden trays they served the flatbread in. It had holes cut out to place the different bowls of dips. I had decided to recreate the flavors and enjoy a meal of flatbreads at home. My platter had five different flatbreads that I served with roasted red pepper hummus and cucumber raita.


The breads in the picture above left to right are - garlic bread, spicy naan, plain naan, onion kulcha and aloo paratha. While I posted all the other breads I never got to posting the kulcha.

You will need
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. salt to taste
1/2 cup yogurt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tbsp. oil, I used olive oil

For the filling
1 onion, diced finely1 tsp. cumin coriander powder
1 tsp. or adjust to taste cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp. ajwain or ova
1/4 tsp. onion seeds (kalonji)
a couple of mints leaves, chopped

Add all the dry ingredients for the dough in a mixing bowl and combine with the wet ingredients to form a dough. Knead well, cover and keep aside to rest for about an hour.

In a separate bowl combine all the ingredients for the filling.


Heat a flat griddle on medium heat. I use cast iron. Divide the rested dough in large lemon sized portions. Flatten one portion on the palm of your hand. Add the filling.


Bring all the sides up over the filling and press together to form a ball with the filling inside.


Flatten the ball slightly in your palm and place it on a board. Using your rolling pin roll it out into a thick disc about 5-7 inches.


Place the rolled out bread on the hot griddle. Let it cook for a minutes and flip it over. Add a few drops of oil to the cooked top. After another minute flip it over again and let it sizzle with the oil. Flip over one last time for a few seconds and take it off the heat.






Enjoy!







This is my entry for week four, day two of BM #88 for the theme Bookmarked recipes. Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#88.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Bubble Tea/ Boba Tea

When my daughter went to high school she used to go out for lunch with friends occasionally. Their favorite haunt sold Bubble tea. My daughter insisted it was something I would like and so the two of use went out to get some. Bubble tea is very interesting, the large tapioca pearls add a nice texture to an otherwise boring drink. As you can tell I am not a fan of tea but I like to try new things.


A few days back my daughter and I were in the Asian store looking to stock up on sauces when we walked through the tea aisle. We were looking at the large selection of green tea and wondering why I had never thought to bring my father here to pick green tea; when I spotted the tapioca pearls. I had to buy a packet and try making bubble tea at home.


I used a basic bag of tea to brew the tea, added milk and sugar and the tapioca pearls. I was happy with the results. There are so many variations of the tea available now, I think I will try the pearls with fruit juice sometime. For now here is the recipe for the pearls with milk tea

You will need
2 tbsp. tapioca pearls (cooked as per package instructions)
1 bag tea
~ 3/4 cup water
~ 1/4 cup milk
sugar as needed (the tapioca pearls are stored in sugar or honey so adjust according to taste)

Prepare tea as you normally would. In my case the last 4 ingredients go in a cup and are heated in the microwave for 1:20 secs. In a cup place the tapioca pearls. Pour the tea over the top.


Enjoy!


Note:
In summer you can add ice cubes to the tea before pouring it over the tapioca pearls.


Enjoy!







This is my entry for week four, day one of BM #88 for the theme Bookmarked recipes. Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#88.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Spicy Tomato Dal

I was trying to do something a little different and came up with this recipe. There is nothing unique about this Spicy Tomato Dal, just added things I normally would not add to dal. The end result was really tasty and everyone loved it. Now this is part of my dal rotation.


Ginger garlic is not part of my everyday cooking. Dal with cumin seeds tadka usually does not have ginger garlic paste added to it. I added it as an experiment that turned out great. Onion is not part of my everyday cooking either. In fact we prefer food without onions. If you like onion, you could add it before the ginger garlic and saute until transparent.

You will need
1 cup toor dal
1 tbsp oil or ghee
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 dried red chili pepper
1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
2 tomatoes, diced
1/2 tsp asafoetida
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp garam masala, I use rasam masala
1 tsp cayenne pepper, optional
salt to taste

Pressure the toor dal with 2 cups water. Keep aside.

Heat oil or ghee in a pan. Add cumin seeds to the heated oil and let them sizzle for a couple seconds. Turn the heat down to low and add the the red chili pepper and ginger garlic paste. Saute for a couple seconds taking care it does not burn. Now add the diced tomatoes and the remaining ingredients except the dal. Add a little water if the tomatoes are not juicy. Let it cook for 4-5 minutes.


Now add the cooked dal and about 1 - 1 1/2 cups water and bring to a boil.


Simmer for a 4-5 minutes on medium-low heat. Turn off heat and serve hot with rice or poli.


Enjoy!







This is my entry for week three, day three of BM #88 for the theme Dazzling dals. Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#88.

This is also my entry to My Legume Love Affair (MLLA #199)

Friday, May 18, 2018

Mixed Dal Ambti

I usually cook for the day early in the morning. One morning a couple of weeks back I walked into the pantry for dal to get the pressure cooker going. I realized I did not have enough toor dal. So I got together a bunch of different dals and made a family favorite, Mixed Dal Ambti.


I used a little of a whole lot of different dals - toor, channa, urad, mung and masoor. Each dal on its own is very flavorful. But together it tastes really great. If you have not tried using multiple dals in one dish yet, you are missing out.

You will need
2 cups combination of dals, I used toor, channa, urad, mung and masoor
1 tomato, diced
1 handful baby kale leaves, diced
1 tbsp oil, I used olive oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp asafeotida
1 tbsp rasam powder or garam masala
salt to taste
Paprika or cayenne pepper to taste

Pressure the dals in a pressure cooker. Keep aside.


Heat oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds. When they sizzle add the asafoetida and turmeric powder. Next add the tomato, kale and the masala powder. Add 1/2 cup of water. Let it cook for about 5 minutes.

Next add the cooked dal and more water if needed. Bring to a boil and let it simmer for 4-5 minutes. Add salt and paprika and let it simmer for another minute. Turn off the heat and serve with rice or poli.



Enjoy!







This is my entry for week two, day two of BM #88 for the theme Dazzling dals. Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#88.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Mixed Vegetables Dal

Two weeks back my daughter had to come home in the middle of the week for an interview for a summer class. I asked her what she would like to dinner and she said comfort food - dal and rice. I made her this Mixed Vegetable Dal with rice. She was very happy. It is so easy to please college kids.


My family is loves vegetables so I used a lot of them. You can any combination of vegetables. We like it when they hold their shape so I used zucchini, carrots and beans. If you like it you can use eggplant.

You will need
1 cup toor dal or split pigeon peas
Mixed vegetables of your choice. I used
1 zucchini, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 handful bean, diced
1 tomato, diced
1 tomato, pureed
1 tbsp garam masala (I use rasam masala)
salt to taste

Tempering
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp urad dal
1/2 tsp asafoetida
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 dried red chilli
1 tbsp oil (I use olive oil)

Wash and rinse the dal. Cook in a pressure cooker. I heat the pressure cooker and let it steam. I then add the whistle and pressure cook for 10 minutes. Turn off heat and let the pressure subside. Keep aside.

Add all the vegetables to a pan along with the pureed tomato and bring to a boil. Let the vegetables cook for a couple of minutes.


Next add the cooked dal and bring it to a boil. Add water if the consistency is too thick. At this stage consistency should be runny. Let it simmer on medium heat for a good 3-5 minutes.


During the last couple of minutes heat oil in a separate pan. Add the mustard seeds. When they sizzle add the other ingredients and turn off the heat.


Add the tempered oil to the dal and let it simmer for a couple more minutes.


The dal is ready. Serve with rice or poli.




Enjoy!







This is my entry for week two, day one of BM #88 for the theme Dazzling Dals. Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#88.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Black Bean and Mixed Vegetable Salad

Today I am posting a delicious Black Bean and Mixed Vegetable Salad. This salad is a complete nutritious meal. Mixed vegetables are a favorite in my family so I usually add a whole different array of vegetables to a lot of my everyday meal. This salad is perfect for weekend lazy brunches. As it is eaten cold it works great for lunch boxes too.


For this salad I cut the vegetables using my Veggie Bullet. But if you do not have a vegetable shredder you could take a little time over the weekend and prep vegetables. Stock up the prepped chopped vegetables separately in glass airtight containers. When needed pull pull the required amount from each of the containers for a salad or other dishes. This is what I do every weekend.

You will need
1 cup dry black beans or 1 can black beans
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1/2 head broccoli, shredded
1 carrot, shredded
1 big handful baby kale, sliced
1 zucchini, shredded
salt and pepper to taste
juice of 1/2 lime

If using dry beans, soak them overnight and pressure cook them the next day. Drain and use in the salad. If using canned beans rinse and drain before using them in the salad. Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl. Let it rest for about 5 minutes and serve.


Enjoy!







This is my entry for week two, day three of BM #88 for the theme Pick a Protein. Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#88.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Chole Chaat

I cook with Garbanzo beans very often. I use it in all kinds of sides and salads as it has a high protein content. But my husband and I like it best in salads. Today I am posting a recipe for Chole Chaat. Mix the cooked garbanzo beans with a little onion, tomato and basic spices and you have a tangy delicious protein rich snack.


Two months back I was in the mood for chaat. I made several recipes over a couple of weeks and will post them one by one. We don't like food too spicy and I use chili peppers sparingly. If you like the chaat mild then this is the recipe for you.

You will neede
1 cup dry garbanzo beans
1/2 onion
1 tomato
1 tsp shredded ginger
1 tsp chaat masala
1 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
salt and pepper to taste

Soak the beans overnight. The next day pressure cook the beans until cooked. I let the pressure built up in the cooker, place the whistle and let it cook for 10 minutes on medium high heat. Then turn off the heat and let it cool and release the pressure. Let the beans cool.


Meanwhile dice the onion and tomato. Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl.


Enjoy!







This is my entry for week two, day two of BM #88 for the theme Pick a Protein. Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#88.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Cannelloni Beans and Mixed Vegetable Quesadilla

Quesadillas are corn or flour tortillas folded in half with bean and other ingredients. While authentic quesadilla call for certain combinations of filling you could use the method of preparation and go crazy with the filling of your choice. This is what I used to do as quesadillas were a favorite packed lunch in our house. I used to try different combinations and had a few favorites. I do not make them as frequently now but once in a while I like to experiment. This recipe was well received as everyone in the family loves vegetables. Introducing vegetables as a snack at an early age may have had something to do with it. In fact, I try not to add too many flavor modifiers to my recipes so we can enjoy the taste of fresh vegetables.


Some time back I got a Veggie Bullet, the quick and easy way to prep your food. The vegetables for this Cannelloni Bean and Mixed Vegetable Quesadilla were processed using this gadget. I shredded the vegetables so that they can be added to the quesadilla without leaving any lumps.

You will need
1 can Canelloni beans or 1 cup beans soaked overnight and pressure cooked
1 carrot
1/2 head broccoli
1/4 onion
4 flour tortilla (I use my everyday poli)
1/4 cup feta cheese crumpled
salt and pepper to taste (remember feta cheese has a lot of salt)
1 tbsp. olive oil

Prep the beans. If using canned beans rinse and drain, keep aside. If using dry beans soak overnight and pressure cook until just tender. Shred the vegetables using your choice of shredder.


Heat the oil in a pan. Add the vegetables and saute for a few minutes. Since I made this recipe I have switched to sauteing vegetables in a little water. They retain their flavor and freshness better.


Add the cooked beans and mash them with a potato masher. You do not want a paste, just enough to blend it all together.


Add the feta cheese, salt and pepper to taste.


Let the mixture cool. In the meantime prepare the tortilla. When you are ready to put it all together. Heat a tortilla on a pan.


Add the filling to half the tortilla and fold it over.


Heat it thoroughly on both sides without letting it burn.


The quesadilla are ready.



Enjoy!












This is my entry for week two, day one of BM #88 for the theme Pick a Protein. Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#88.