Month: October 2010

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whole-chillies-mustard

Whole Chillies in a Zingy Mustard Yogurt

Once upon a time I made the mortal mistake of slicing a chilli and then rubbing my itchy eye. I propose that the pain factor is on par with a stinging nettle thrust into the eyeball. Coming from a chilli-mad family I was almost as irritated as my weeping red eye that I hadn’t been forewarned to never ever let this happen. And never will it happen again (I hope). Other activities to avoid after handling chillies: Blowing your nose Cutting your nails Scratching any sort of itch on your body, nor anyone else’s for that matter Petting the dog/cat/bird/domestic rodent Squeezing your spots- you shouldn’t be doing this one anyway Going to the bathroom- you really don’t want to do that What I don’t understand is when recipes call for de-seeded chillies. What’s that all about? Throwing away the seeds of a chilli is like throwing away the juice of a lemon, or the soul of a sadhu. It just defeats the object.  Your fingers will be glad to hear (?) that with this …

Summer Berry Shrikhand

I’m a massive clinger. Ever since the summer sun disappeared behind these pesky autumnal clouds, I’ve been doing everything in my power to cling on to the warm days which were so quickly snatched away from me. Sniff. Due to my recent bitterness towards not receiving delicious freebies on my doorstep like a certain Mr. P, I enquired about sampling some Greek yogurt from Total. Fage Total are specialists in yogurt making and their product range includes choices for all kinds of yogurt lovers. Their full fat Greek yogurt is exactly the thing I need for making Shrikhand. They even have 0% fat and 2% fat Greek yogurts which are perfect for cooking. Bring. Them. On. I’ve been rambling on about Shrikhand for absolutely ages, teasing you with recipes like Eggless Saffron and Lemon Shrikhand Cheesecake and Shrikhand Spice Lamingtons. Evil, no? In all seriousness, I’ve actually been meaning to do this for a long time and thanks to Total, I finally had the motivation to get it done. I chose to combine my sweetened, spiced …

Homemade Paneer

Homemade Paneer

The idea of making cheese at home is one of those beautiful things which you never really appreciate until you actually do it. Paneer is a type of cottage cheese (non-matured) that is popular in India and practically every other place where Indians live, especially among vegetarians. We just can’t get enough. It has quickly become a staple ingredient in dishes on menus in underdog vegetarian restaurants all over the UK. The devotion we feel for this decadent cheese could be likened to the omnivore’s appetite for meat. Paneer is packed with protein and is fairly healthy as far as cheeses go, so don’t feel bad for once in a while binges. I won’t tell if you don’t. Paneer is also famous for making delicious a whole load of otherwise boring dishes. Palak Paneer, Paneer Makhani, Chilli Paneer, Mutter Paneer, Paneer Butter Masala, Shahi Paneer, Paneer Jalfrezi and Saag Paneer to name a few. I will stop there before I drool all over my keyboard and lose all functionality. You can use this recipe to …

mung-dal-paneer-samosa

Little Mung Daal and Paneer Samosas

Isn’t miniature food always better than supersized food? Take cupcakes for instance; tiny morsels of individually iced, fluffy cake is so much more alluring than a massive, calorie-laden, brick-ish cake. Well, for me anyway. In the same way, I would always pick a box of tiny chocolate truffles over a chunky chocolate bar. If you had given me the choice when I was a child I would have definitely supersized every time. Hence the regrettable existence of the unsightly pot-belly that tormented me in my early years.   I consume far too much salt, sugar and fat, which I am told will affect my twentysomething body in a number of gruesome ways before I hit my thirties and forties. This is one of those recipes which will carry most of the blame. Luckily for you, I miniaturised these delicious mung daal and paneer samosas so that you can enjoy them without all of the guilt and fear of heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure. Just don’t eat all of them at once. Having said …

garlic-chutney

Sizzlingly Hot Garlic Chutney

I always think carefully before I indulge in a dish chock-full of garlic. What am I doing tomorrow? Am I going anywhere? Who am I meeting with? I love it when the answers are, ‘nothing’, ‘no’ and ‘nobody’. Controversially, I think that gobbling garlic swamped dishes should only really be done in the privacy of one’s own home; curtains shut tightly, chain on the door and phone off the hook. We don’t want any disturbances. I admire this almost ritualistic way of paying homage to the humble garlic by eating it privately, behind closed doors. I suppose it’s just human nature to enjoy doing something that makes you ask yourself whether you should really be doing it at all. Did you know that garlic is slightly toxic and even if you are just preparing it, your breath and pores will take on that love it/hate it garlic smell. It is also a top blood purifier. Isn’t it great when the pros outweigh the cons? To get that garlic smell off your hands, wash them with washing …