Year: 2009

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Poppin’ Them Corks

I’m sending you a thousand thank you samosas for making 2009 one of the most fulfilling years of my life. I have learnt so many wonderful things from you all and discovered some even more wonderful friends here! I wish you health, love and prosperity for the coming year (and all of the years after that!) Thank you for your grace, support, inspirational comments and e-mails (all of which I love to read!) So let us grab a little canapé and big a drink and then say, “Namaste” to 2010!

Nutritious and Delicious: A Guest Post

Stacy’s blog is all about that food you can eat without all of the guilt and calories. She makes exciting healthy dishes fun; sometimes by spicing them up with exotic and exciting things and sometimes by keeping things simple, hearty and traditional. Check out her recipes for Ras el Hanout Spiced Crackers, Lebanese Vegetable Soup and traditional Latkes. Sound amazing, don’t they? They are. Well, I’m guest blogging my recipe for Sprouted Pulse Baked Samosas over at Nutrition as Nature Intended today and I hope you enjoy them just as much as my family and I did! You can find the recipe and pictures here. Enjoy!

Spring Chicks and Turnip Babies

Before you think I’ve fallen off my lifelong (21 year old) vegetarian wagon, please allow me to explain that this recipe contains neither spring chicks, nor babies. It does in fact contain spring onions, chickpea flour and baby turnips, so it’s all good. This quick and simple recipe is a great everyday Gujarati favourite in our house and can be made with pretty much any veggies you can think of. I like to use radishes, mooli, bell peppers, cabbage, cauliflower, fenugreek and if I’m feeling tough enough, whole chillies. I love that the veggies still retain their natural, sweet flavours among the bursts of spice provided by the chickpea flour masala. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do! Stay tuned for the asafoetida showcase. Baby Turnip and Spring Onion Curry made the Foodbuzz Top 9 on 28th December 2009 (Serves 4) Ingredients Around 15 baby turnips, washed, trimmed and sliced into 1cm pieces 4 spring onions (scallions), washed, trimmed and sliced 1 large tomato, chopped finely 1 cup water ½ tsp dehydrated kasoori methi …

Unveiling Asafoetida

Anyone in the mood for some ‘devils dung’? Of course not, why would you be? Asafoetida (a.k.a ‘hing’) has an ‘unpleasant smell when uncooked’ which is obviously why it’s called worse names than the bullied kid at school. Personally I would like to stand up for this poor, tormented and viciously labelled spice. I really don’t know where the name asafoetida originated but I’m taking a damn good guess in thinking that the person who came up with it, thought it smelled super funky. Otherwise it wouldn’t contain the word ‘foetid’, right?Legend has it that it helps with digestion and upset stomachs which I have believed to be true all my life. However like with a lot of Aryuvedic treatments, I am unaware of any scientific research having proved this theory. Maybe I should start making like a guinea pig and testing them on myself. Or maybe not. Some Indians believe that by mixing a little asafoetida and water then filling your bellybutton up with it will cure indigestion. Sounds mental, huh? My friend and I …

The Turmeric Showcase: Gujarati Khichdi

As promised, it is my pleasure to share with you a recipe in which turmeric is a key ingredient. Gujarati khichdi (pronounced: khiCHdRiy) literally translates to ‘mish-mash’- sounds appetising, right? Well maybe not, but it is one of the most comforting rice and lentil dishes in the whole world (at least in my eyes!) I have been eating it since I can remember; which is probably since I began to grow teeth! Every time I eat a big spoonful of this soft, nutritious, buttery Comfort I am teleported back to my childhood. It can be eaten on its own, mixed with milk for breakfast (although I think it’s good any time of the day!). Or with that other Gujarati favourite, kadhi. If you are not familiar with this dish then you may be familiar with the British version Kedgeree, which is a similar rice dish made with eggs. Kedgeree was adapted from Indian khichdi to suit the appetites of British colonisers during the British colonial rule in India. I think it’s really fascinating how food blueprints tend …

Unveiling The KO Rasoi Spice Box Series: Turmeric

Welcome to the first instalment of The KO Rasoi Spice Box Series. Over several weeks I hope to bring you little snippets of the wonders that are in my spice boxes, why they are in there and what they are used for. I’m glad I’ve finally got around to doing this as I’m sure many of you are wondering what some of the strange spices I use in my recipes actually are! I also hope to showcase these spices in the recipes which make the best use out of them. So stay tuned for the follow up recipes after the initial spice lesson (okay this is beginning to sound like school now, so I’ll shut up about it). Next time you add spices to your dishes, remember that they are also in there for reasons other than adding flavour. So without further a due… I’m beginning with one of the most used spices used in Indian cooking which is turmeric a.k.a. haldi or hurdhar (in Gujarati). I’m sure you’ve all heard of this one as …

Guest Recipe: Akhu Shaak- Whole Vegetables with a Spicy Peanut Stuffing

I’m ecstatic to deliver you a KO Rasoi guest recipe! I am so proud to tell you that this recipe was written and passed on to me by my dear mummy (to me, the best cook in the world!) Having learned from her father, who was a wonderful chef, she has been cooking with so much love for many years. I think all that is left to say about this is thank you mum for teaching me how to cook. I would have never started this blog if it wasn’t for her and my dad’s support and passion for cooking. Akhu Shaak is what I like to call the Gujarati ‘roast dinner’! Which is why I believe it is a great vegetarian alternative to a roast Christmas dinner; there is stuffing, gravy and crispy bits in a single dish! Akhu (pronounced: aakHU) literally means ‘whole’ and shaak simply means ‘curry’. The vegetable stuffing is heavily spiced and is so wonderful for big get-togethers. You can make trays full of however many vegetables you like and …

Ich Liebe den Deutschen Markt

A buzzing excitement always fills me when I know that I am going somewhere I only get the chance to go to once in a blue moon. It is as if I’m a child once again. Walking from the dirty, musky underground car park into the piercing night air I feel an incredible sense of wonder about what the evening has to offer. Slipping through Nottingham’s maze-like side streets under a light, warm and steady attack of rain I know I’m going to see some wonderful things here; things which could only be pulled out of a fairytale and set before our hungry eyes. I marvel at the possibilities of whether or not the cobbled street I walk on was once roamed by Robin Hood and his Merry Men in the distant and hazy past. As we snake in and out of the winding roads and masses of people, my companion and I discuss the things that may be at the German market, for this is where we were going. Before I can take in another …

Warming Spiced Apple Chutney

Baby it’s cold outside. I’m not kidding, it’s horrible. Last night the torrential rain and horrific winds woke me up from a deep sleep. All I wanted to do was curl up under the sheets and dream away… Zzzzz… But it was soon time to wake up and get on with university work. After sitting in front of a screen all day I just wanted to unwind. So what better way to relax than to make chutney? Okay, that sounded less nerdy and a lot cooler in my mind at the time. So I had a bag of Gala apples staring at me because I bought them cheap at the supermarket last week and had barely touched them. I fear I may have hurt the apples’ feelings. Sorry apples. Let me make it up to you… Ingredients (makes one cup of apple chutney) 7 medium eating apples, peeled, cored and quartered1 ½ cups granulated sugar3 cloves1 inch piece of ginger, grated¼ tsp star anise powder¼ tsp fennel powderPinch of cardamom powderPinch of salt (helps to …

Bhabhi’s Special!

This wonderful recipe was passed on to me by my bhabhi (sis in-law) ‘S’ who describes it as, “really simple but a firm favourite of mine for the winter days”. She wasn’t lying. It really is painfully simple to make and it tastes so delicious. My friend and I shamefully devoured the whole lot in one sitting! I wasn’t sure what to serve it with and have so much reading to do for university at the moment, so I decided to toast some panini rolls and spread them with a little garlic butter. It is an unlikely combination but it worked really well. I think it will also taste superb with puri (deep fried flat bread). The recipe is totally ‘farari’ (ideal for fasting on holy days in the calendar) minus the garlic bread of course! I have a few other innovative ideas regarding this recipe… But I might just make you wait until I have tried and tested them first! ‘S’ Bhabhi’s Dhai Varu Shaak(Serves 4) Ingredients 4 medium potatoes, peeled, boiled and roughly mashed2 chillies, …

Almost Gujarati Puran Puri

It’s a bit like a chapatti. It’s a bit like a stuffed paratha. But it’s also in a league of its own… because it’s sweet! This intriguing recipe was requested by a mysterious ‘Anonymous’ person in the ‘Ask Sanjana’ post where you are all welcome to request particular dishes or certain ingredients to be used in recipes. So ‘Anonymous’, this puran puri recipe is for you! Puran puri is a very traditional sweet chapatti prepared in Gujarat as well as Maharashtra and South India. Although, each recipe varies according to the region in which it prepared for example; the type of daal chosen, whether sugar or jaggery is used and the choice of spices. I believe the difference in recipes is indeed subject to regional differences, yet it also varies according to personal differences. I prepared mine in the Midlands of England so it’s totally permissible that I made my puran puri recipe up using what I thought would taste good *wink wink*. Having ever eaten only Gujarati puran puri, I went by the model …

Short and Sweet

Today’s post is going to be a quick one as it’s just a modified version of the eggless coconut sponge cake I made earlier. I have simply replaced the coconut in the recipe with almond extract and kewra water (screwpine leaf water). Kewra water is extracted from the pandan plant and often used for biryani in Indian and Pakistani cuisine. It doesn’t completely taste like pandan paste used in South-East Asian cuisine, however it imparts a perfumed and citrusy flavour upon the dish. I baked my cakes in a mini cork muffin tin from Ikea, which you can find here. If you don’t have one of these trays you can use a regular cupcake or muffin tin. Kewra and Almond Mini Cork Cakes (Makes approx 12-14 cakes) Ingredients200g plain flour100g skimmed milk powder160g icing sugar (confectioner’s sugar)1 tbsp vanilla extract (or the seeds from 1 fresh vanilla pod)100g butter, softened2 tsp’s baking powder1 tsp bicarbonate of soda½ cup plain natural yogurt½ cup water½ cup milk2 tbsp kewra (screwpine leaf) water¼ tsp amond extract For the whipped cream 250ml …