Wednesday, July 28, 2010

~ Basic Biscuit ~

Ingredient :

2 1/2 cups (325 grams) all-purpose flour

2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 tablespoon (14 grams) granulated white sugar (optional)

1/2 cup (113 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

3/4 cup (180 ml) milk

1 large egg, lightly beaten


1 large egg, lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon milk

Method :

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, sift or whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Cut the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs (use pastry blender, two knives, or fingertips). Add the milk and slightly beaten egg and stir until just combined. (The texture should be sticky, moist and lumpy.)

Place mixture on a lightly floured surface and knead the dough gently until it comes together and is a smooth dough.

Roll out dough to 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) thickness. Cut out biscuits with a lightly floured round cookie cutter. Place on prepared baking sheet and brush the tops with the beaten egg and milk mixture and bake for about 10 - 15 minutes or until the tops are golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center of the biscuit comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack. Serve warm with butter.

Makes about 12 3-inch (7.5 cm) biscuits.


~ Tips for making a good biscuits ~

To make a good biscuit, the correct mixing of the ingredients is crucial. Although you could use an electric mixer I prefer to mix the dough by hand using either a pastry blender, two knives or just my fingertips. Mixing by hand helps to prevent over mixing of the dough.

To begin, the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder/baking soda, and salt) are whisked or sifted together in a large bowl.

Next the butter is cut into the flour until it looks like coarse crumbs. It is important that the butter be cold so when it is worked into the flour mixture it becomes small, flour- coated crumbs, not a smooth dough. This method is similar to how a pie dough is made and gives the biscuit a wonderful delicate and flaky texture.

The wet ingredients are then added to the flour mixture. Only mix the dough until it comes together.

I cannot stress enough that this dough should not be overworked and that a light hand is needed. If you end up with a hard and doughy biscuit, you will know to mix the dough less the next time.

When the dough is mixed, gather it up in your hands and place on a lightly floured surface. Knead the dough a few times to make it a cohesive mass and then roll to 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) thickness. Use a lightly floured cookie cutter and cut into rounds. Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and brush with the egg wash. Using an egg wash gives the biscuits a nice appearance and helps with browning.

Biscuits need to be baked in a hot oven so the dough sets quickly thereby producing a light biscuit with a golden brown top and bottom with white sides. They are done when they are nicely browned and a toothpick inserted in the center of the scone comes out clean. The texture of the interior should be light and soft, and white in color. Cool on a wire rack.

If you want crusty biscuits, cool them uncovered. If a softer crust is desired, then wrap the hot biscuits in a clean dish towel.

(Read more:

Monday, July 12, 2010

~ Plain Waffle ~

Waffles are really easy to make and the batter uses the most basic of ingredients, flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, an egg, milk, and butter. It is almost the same as a pancake batter. In fact, the only real difference between the two is how they look; whereas pancakes are round and are baked on a griddle or frying pan, waffles are either square or heart-shaped with a honeycomb surface that are baked in their own machine. I will say that waffles are thicker, more bread-like, and crisper and their grids do make ideal pockets for the maple syrup and butter..

Ingredients :

1 cup (130 grams) all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 tablespoons granulated white sugar

1 large egg, lightly beaten

1 cup (240 ml) milk

2 tablespoons (28 grams) unsalted butter, melted

Methods :

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. In a separate bowl whisk together the egg and milk. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture, all at once, and stir just until combined. Stir in the melted butter.

Depending on your machine's instructions, you may need to lightly spray the grids with a non stick vegetable spray. Spoon about a 1/4 to 1/2 cup of batter (or amount that is recommended in your waffle iron's instruction book) onto one side of the hot iron. Take a knife or small metal spatula and smooth out the batter. Close the lid of the iron and bake until brown and crisp. It is best to serve the waffles immediately along with butter and maple syrup. These are also wonderful when served with fresh berries and whipped cream as a dessert.

Makes about 6 - four inch (10 cm) square waffles

~ Blueberry Pancakes ~

Ingredients :

1 cup (130 grams) all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons (28 grams) granulated white sugar

1 large egg, lightly beaten

1 cup (240 ml) milk

2 tablespoons (28 grams) unsalted butter, melted

Plus extra melted butter for greasing the pan.

Method :

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. In a separate bowl whisk together the egg, milk, and melted butter. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture, all at once, and stir or whisk just until combined. The batter should have some small lumps. Make sure you do not over mix the batter or the pancakes will be tough.

Heat a frying pan or griddle over medium high heat until a few sprinkles of water dropped on the pan or griddle splatter. Using a pastry brush, brush the pan with a little melted butter.

Using a small ladle or scoop, pour about 1/4 cup of pancake batter onto the pan, spacing the pancakes a few inches from each other. When the bottoms of the pancakes are brown and bubbles start to appear on the top surfaces of the pancakes (2-3 minutes), turn over. Cook until lightly browned (about 1-2 minutes).

Repeat with remaining batter, brushing the pan with melted butter between batches.

Serve immediately with butter and maple syrup.

Makes about 8 - 3-inch (7.5 cm) pancakes. Serves 3-4 people.

For Blueberry Pancakes: Sprinkle fresh blueberries on the tops of the pancakes just as bubbles start to appear on the top surface of the frying batter.

~ Easy Chicken Kabab ~

Ingredients :

- Chicken- 1 LB boneless cut to small cubes
- Freshly ground black pepper- 1 tsp
- Oil- 2 tablespoons
- Soy sauce- 2 tablespoons

Method :

Mix the soy sauce, pepper powder & oil with little water
and coat the chicken cubes evenly.

Leave it to marinate for an hour. Arrange
this marinated chicken in skewers and broil for 20 minutes.

Turn the chicken pieces in between and baste
with the left over marinade occasionally.

~ Lemon Chicken With Roasted Garlic ~

Ingredients ;

* 8 skinless boneless chicken thighs, washed and patted dry
* 1/3 cup lemon juice
* 1/4 cup olive oil
* 10-15 whole peeled garlic cloves
* 1/2 cup chicken broth
* 1 Tbsp dried oregano
* Salt and pepper

Method :

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Place the garlic in a roasting pan.
Lay the chicken thighs over the garlic cloves.
Top the chicken with the remaining ingredients and season well with salt and pepper. Roast in 400 degree oven, turning occasionally until the chicken is golden and most of the broth/juice has evaporated, leaving only olive oil in the pan.
Remove the chicken and garlic cloves from the pan leaving the olive oil behind. Serve the chicken garnished with the whole roasted garlic cloves and additional lemon wedges.

Notes: The chicken in this dish is succulent and the garlic is soft, mild and delicious.

Number of Servings: 4

Friday, July 9, 2010

~ Whole Wheat Pizza Dough ~

Ingredients :

* 1 tablespoons granulated sugar or honey
* 1 1/4 cups warm water (110F)
* 1 (1/4 ounce) pack dry yeast
* 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
* 2 cups whole wheat flour
* 1 teaspoon of salt
* 1/4 cup olive oil

Step by Step Procedure :

1. Dissolve sugar or honey in water and add yeast.

2. In a separate bowl, combine flours.

3. Allow to sit until the yeast foams slightly (about 5 minutes).

4. Combine 3 cups of the flour and salt in a bowl. Pour the yeast mixture and oil if you are using it.

5. Knead the mixture, gradually adding enough of the remaining flour mixture so that the dough is no longer sticky. Continue kneading until the dough is smooth and elastic (another 10−15 minutes by hand).

6. Shape dough into a ball and put in an large oiled bowl, turning the dough to coat it with the oil.

7. Allow to rise until doubled in size (45 minutes to 1 hours).

8. Punch down the dough and divide into 2 pieces. This will make two 12 inch pizzas.

9. Shape each portion into a 12" circle either by hand or with a rolling pin, stretching out as necessary to achieve a thin dough. For a lighter crust, let the dough sit for a half hour after shaping before constructing pizza and baking.

10. Spread sauce over crust and top with cheese and desired toppings.

11. Allow to rest in a warm location for 15 minutes.

12. Bake in a 475 degree oven until crust is golden, about 20 minutes.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

~ Pizza Dough Recipes ~

How To Make Pizza Dough ...

Strong white flour is best (in some countries this flour is marked as bread flour). Although plain flour can be used as well, it does not have the same high gluten content and therefore the finished pizza dough will not be as stretchy. Watching a pizza chef doing acrobatics with the dough is proof enough how elastic the dough should be, they throw it in the air and catch it with their fingers without it leaving a dent in the dough. This shows that the gluten has done its work and the pizza dough is robust and flexible.

Whilst it is technically possible to get the pizza dough to rise faster by placing the dough in a warm place, experts tend to agree that the finished pizza dough is best left to rise naturally, whatever the pizza dough recipe. After kneading the dough should be left to double in size naturally. This should be a process that is completed by the eye and not the clock. It can take anything between 1 hour and 2 hours depending on the temperature and the amount of draught.

Pay attention to the kneading process: it eliminates excess gas produced by the yeast and quite literally knocks the air out of the pizza dough. Many people find the action of kneading the dough very therapeutic and chefs are often asked how you can tell when the dough is kneaded sufficiently. The answer is: you can feel it in your hands (practice makes perfect).

Pizza dough keeps in the refrigerator for several days and frozen pizza dough can be kept for several months. I always have frozen pizza dough in the freezer for emergencies, and I find that if it is frozen in pieces the size of golf balls then it is defrosted in ten minutes.

When you come to baking your pizza dough, the chances are that you are using a conventional oven rather than one fired from the volcanic rocks of Vesuvius. The baking time is always intense and short and the temperature should be 220°C or 425°F. The pizza dough should always be placed on the upper shelves, and whilst you can cook more than one pizza base at once, they should never be placed at less than the middle. This is because heat rises and you cannot get the best heat at the bottom of an oven.

How to Ascertain the Pizza Is Cooked ....

If your oven has a glass door this is an easy process. If the pizza has a rim then the dough develops blisters and it is golden brown, without a rim the golden brown color of the edge indicates that the pizza is ready to be eaten.

If the oven has not got a glass door it's more difficult to check if your pizza is ready. Do remember that every time you open the oven door, heat is lost and the pizza becomes less than perfect each time the door is opened.

The process, depending on the oven, takes between ten to fifteen minutes and it will take longer if you have more than one pizza in. A thicker crust will also take longer than a thinner crust.

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Easy Pizza Dough Recipe :

Ingredients Required ...

* 1 cup of warm water (105F)
* 3 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
* 2 tablespoons of olive oil
* 2 teaspoons of honey
* 1 teaspoon of salt
* 1 teaspoon of yeast

Step by Step Procedure ...

1. Put warm water (80 to 110°F) into a bowl. Add salt and honey and mix with a spoon. Add yeast, mix and let it sit for about 10 minutes.

2. Gradually add flour and olive oil and start mixing.

3. When the mixture gets too heavy to mix, start kneading the dough with your hands.

4. Knead the dough until you have a smooth ball. If the dough cracks it is too dry. Add water bit by bit until if forms a nice coherent ball. If your doug feels more like batter, it is too wet and you need to add flour bit by bit. If you need to add water or flour, do it by small amounts.

5. Coat the dough with olive oil, place it in a large bowl and cover it with kitchen wrap or a grocery bag. Let the doug rise for about an hour at room temperature, then push it down again so it deflates. Let it sit for about another hour. If you want to use it the next day, put it in a refrigerator.

6. Put the dough on a lightly floured surface, put a bit of flour on top and make it into the shape of a pie by stretching it out from the center outwards. Use a rolling pin until the dough is about 1/4" thick. Punch some holes in the dough with a fork to let the air escape while the pizza is in the oven.

7. Put on your pizza sauce of choice.Put on your favorite pizza toppings.

8. Bake the pizza in your oven at 400 - 450° F for about 20 to 25 minutes until the crust is light brown.

Additional Information

* You get better results when you use a pizza baking stone. The pizza stone should be preheated to 450F for an hour prior to baking, and should be placed in the middle of the oven.

~ Hyderabadi Biryani ~

Ingredients ..

1 kg boneless meat
500 g basmati rice

Spices for rice:

2 cloves
2 cinnamon
2 cardamom
1/4 cup coriander leaves
1/4 cup mint leaves
2 green chillies, slit lengthwise

2 big onions
1/4 cup lime juice
500 g curd
4 teaspoon ginger - garlic paste
1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
2 teaspoon green chilli paste
A pinch shajeera
2 cloves
2 cinnamon
3 cardamom
1 bunch coriander leaves, finely chopped
1/4 cup mint leaves
A pinch saffron
2 teaspoon
2 cups oil
Salt to taste

Method ...

Cut the meat into 4 - inch square pieces and wash. Add ginger - garlic paste and marinate it for an hour.

Cut onion lengthwise and fry in oil on low heat till it browns.

Remove onions and spread it on a plate. Crush it with your hands when it cools down.

Now mix the curd with three parts of the fried onions, red chilli powder, green chilli paste, cinnamon, cardamom, shajeera, clove, coriander leaves, mint leaves, salt and some oil.

Add the mixture to the marinated meat and leave for one hour.

After one hour, cook basmati rice with salt, cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, mint , coriander leaves and green chillies. When the rice is half cooked, remove from the heat and drain water.

Spread this half - cooked rice on the marinated meat, adding lime juice, saffron, remaining part of the crushed onions and ghee on top of the layer.

Cover the utensil with a tight lid and and keep on low heat for 30 - 40 minutes. Remove from the heat and serve with Raita / Mirchi Ka Salan.

~ Prawns Biryani with Olive Oil ~

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 45 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients ...

500 g basmati rice
A few strands of saffron
1 / 4 teaspoon food color
2 teaspoon lemon juice
2 onions, sliced
2 teaspoon olive oil

Spice powder:

1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
1 teaspoon red chilli powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder

4 garlic flakes, crushed
2 red chillies, broken
500 g prawns, wash, clean, deveined, head and tail removed
2 tomatoes, chopped
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon brown vinegar
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon / 3 teaspoon ghee
2 teaspoon chopped coriander leaves
2 hard boiled eggs, halved ( optional )

Method ...

Parboil the rice in salted water. Drain and keep aside (Do not overcook rice ).

Add saffron and food color mixed with lemon juice to the rice.

In a pan, heat 1 teaspoon olive oil and fry sliced onions till brown.

Set half aside.

Add spice powders and broken red chillies to the remaining onions. Mix well.

Heat remaining 1 teaspoon olive oil. Add prawns and spice powder - brown onion - red chilli mix. Saute on a low heat for five minutes.

Add chopped tomatoes, sugar, vinegar and salt, and simmer till the prawns are cooked ( do not add water ) and the gravy thickens.

To assemble the biryani, grease the utensil with 2 teaspoon ghee.

Add a layer of rice, a layer of prawns mixture and a layer of remaining rice.

Sprinkle the rice with the remaining ghee ( 1 teaspoon ) and cover the container tightly.

Let the biryani cook on a low heat for 15 - 20 minutes.

Garnish with chopped coriander leaves, remaining brown onions and halved boiled eggs ( optional ). Serve hot.

~ Nasi Biryani (biryani rice ) ~


1 1/2 lbs chicken pieces
1 1/3 lb basmati rice - soaked for 30 minutes and drained
1 tbsp tamarind pulp - soaked in 1 cup water for 30 minutes, Then press and sieve the juice.
2 - 3 medium onion - sliced(about 1/2 lb)
2 tbsp grated ginger
2 tbsp chopped garlic
1 cup cooking oil
1 packet 'Shan' Malay Chicken Biryani
Fried shallots
Toasted cashew nuts
Cilantro for garnishing


Marinate chicken pieces with ginger, garlic and 2 tbsp of Shan Malay Chicken Biryani mix for 1 hour.

Heat oil and brown the marinated chicken pieces. Remove and set aside.

Sweat the chopped onions, then add in browned chicken pieces, the rest of the Shan Malay Chicken Biryani mix, tamarind juice and 1 cup water. Continue to cook and stir until sauce is thickened. Set aside.

Boil 10 cups of water with 1 tbsp salt and add in the soaked rice. Boil until the rice is three-quarter tender. Drain the liquid.

Assembling the Biryani:

Spread the cooked chicken pieces and the drained rice in layers into the rice cooker.

Top with raisins, then cover and press the cook function and cook until rice is cooked through.

Slightly mix the rice and chicken pieces and garnish with cashew nuts and fried shallots before serving.

~ Sheek (Skewer) Kebab ~


• 1 lb. lean mince lamb or mutton or beef
• 1 large onion minced
• 1/2 inch piece of ginger pounded
• 4 cloves of garlic pounded
• 2-3 green chillies minced
• 6 mint leaves
• A small bunch of fresh coriander
• 1 egg
• 2 slices of fresh bread crumbs or 2 tbs. besan (chick pea flour)
• A few strands of saffron, soaked in 1 tbs. of warm milk
• Salt to taste
• 1/4 tsp. chilli powder to taste
• 1 tbs. ghee or olive oil for oiling hands (step 8). You can use just water.
• Whole spices roasted in a pan and ground in a coofee grinder:
• 1 tsp. cumin seeds
• 2 cloves
• 4 green cardamom pods
• 1/2 blade of mace
• 1/2 inch piece cinnamon stick


1. Put garlic, ginger, mint, coriander leaves, green chillies and spices in a food processor and grind coarsely.
2. Add the egg and give it another quick whiz in the food processor.
3. Place meat in a large bowl, add bread crumbs, finely minced onion and pour the spice paste over it.
4. Add saffron, salt and chilli powder. Mix and leave in the fridge, in an airtight container, for a minimum of 4-6 hours. Overnight is better for flavours to infuse into the meat.
5. Shape the mix with dampened or oiled hands into sausage shapes on a thick skewers* grill the meat in a hot grill or tandoor.

~ Shammi Kebab ~


1 lb. lamb mince boiled - with no water left after the meat is boiled
4 oz. chana daal - with no water left after the lentil is boiled
2 tbsp. Ajika garam masala
minced fresh green chilies to taste
1 tbsp. garlic minced
1 tbsp. ginger minced
2 tbsp. very finely minced cilantro
2 tsp. coriander powder
1 tsp. cumin powder
Salt and fresh lime juice to taste
ghee or oil to shallow fry


Grind all ingredients except the cilantro into a thick dough in your food processor. Now add the cilantro. Shape into patties.
Heat the cooking oil/ghee on a heavy-bottomed skillet and shallow fry the kababs till golden on both sides.

Hint: if the patty is faliing apart at the time of pan frying - add one egg to the mixture by folding the egg into the meat dough.

~ Shrimp Tandoori Recipe ~


2 tablespoon Tandoori Spice Blend
3 tablespoons peeled and minced fresh ginger
3 tablespoons minced garlic
3 tablespoons besan
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 cups plain yogurt
2 pounds large shrimp, shelled
3 tablespoons ghee

Stir together the ginger, garlic, flour, spice blend in a bowl large enough to hold the shrimp. Stir in the lemon juice and then the yogurt, a bit at a time, stirring until smooth after each addition. Add the shrimp and toss. Marinate for 2 hours

Grill shrimp on both sides while brushing with ghee, until cooked through.


Put the shrimp in a single layer on a rack in a foil-lined baking pan, brush with ghee, and broil in a preheated oven, until cooked through - about 8-10 minutes each side.

Garnish with roasted cumin powder

Serve with raita, flat breads and chutney.

~ Chicken Tandoori Recipe (Tandoori Murgh) ~


2-inch piece ginger, peeled and minced
4 large cloves garlic crushed
1 tbsp. Ajika Tandoori Spice Blend
3/4 cup plain low-fat or whole milk yogurt
1/2. fresh green lime juice
Mix all above ingredients in a bowl

2 lb. boneless skinless chicken thighs and breasts. Make slits in the chicken and add the chicken in the above mix and marinate covered for 4 hours at a minumum or overnight

1/4 cup ghee
A brush to coat the chicken while it grills

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced into rings
1/2 cup minced cilantro leaves
1 or 2 fresh green chiles, thinly sliced
lime wedges

Ready a charcoal grill with an even layer of coals. While the grill is heating up, take the chicken out of the refrigerator. When the charcoal is red-hot, lay the chicken pieces on the grill about 2 inches apart. Baste with any remaining marinade and ghee and turn the chicken. Grill the chicken till it is cooked, a bit charred but not dry. The ghee should help in keeping the chicken moist.

Transfer the chicken to a large platter and sprinkle some fresh lime juice over it. Garnish with onion, cilantro, green chilies, and lime wedges. Seal the platter with foil. This will help to have the aroma of the garnish seep into the chicken.

Enjoy delicious Tandoori chicken.

Serve with flat breads and chutney.

~ Poori ~

Poori :

(These are small round pancakes size rounds of dough that are slipped into hot oil or ghee, where they fill with steam and balloon in seconds. Pooris are soft silk like breads with which curries and vegetables are scooped up. Allow 2-3 per person, depending on the size of the breads and the accompanying dishes.)

- 2.5 cups chappati flour
- 2/3 cup water at room temperature
- ghee for brushing the bread while rolling out the dough
- Oil for deep frying

Method to roll out the dough ..
Make stiff but pliable dough.
Cover the dough with damp cloth and set aside for 30 minutes.
Knead dough a little again. Dough should be stiff enough to roll without extra flour.
Make small balls of the dough and cover them with damp cloth.
Take one ball of dough and dip a corner of ball in melted ghee or oil and roll it out into 4 to 5 inches round.
Repeat the same process to roll out all pooris.

Frying the Pooris ...
Heat plenty of oil in a kadhai until very hot.
Put in a poori and immediately start flickering hot oil over the top of it with a spatula so that it will swell up like a ball.
This should take only a few seconds. Flip the poori over and cook the other side until golden brown.
Serve hot with curries or vegetables.

~ Natural Ways to Boost Your Metabolism ~

Natural Ways to Boost Your Metabolism :

A fast metabolism is critical to burning fat and managing body weight. While some dieters use diet pills to speed up their metabolisms, the risks and side effects of these drugs make them risky. You can use some safe and natural methods to speed up your metabolism.

Gain Muscle ...

The American Council on Exercise recommends resistance training for weight management. Think of your muscles as your body's engine. The bigger your engine, the more energy you can burn. Muscle, unlike fat, is active tissue that raises your metabolism just by being there. Adding a resistance training program is a sure method of naturally raising your metabolism. To make the most out of your time in the gym, train three days per week, training your entire body during each session. Use basic, compound exercises such as the leg press and shoulder press.

Keep Hydrated ...

Inadequate water intake can slow your metabolism. Water is responsible for several metabolic processes, including digestion, waste management and temperature regulation. The Mayo Clinic recommends drinking 2 liters of water daily. You can fight hunger as well as raise your metabolism by drinking a glass before each meal. To provide an extra boost, make sure your water is ice cold. Your body burns extra calories heating it up to room temperature.

Cardiovascular Exercise ...

Cardiovascular exercises such as walking, jogging and cycling are all effective ways to burn calories and keep your metabolism stoked. If you are just starting out, use a low-impact, low-intensity exercise such as brisk walking or moderate cycling. With more experience, you can graduate to jogging or intense cycling like spinning.

Coffee ...

Whether you realize it or not, you might already be waking up to an effective natural metabolism booster. The caffeine naturally present in coffee raises metabolism and can improve fat oxidation. Drinking a cup before exercise can also improve alertness and help fight fatigue.

(LIVESTRONG.COM is designed to inspire people to change their lives, help themselves and help others. For more on this topic, visit

~ Parantha ~

Parantha :

(These breads, called paranthas, are flaky and somewhat more elaborate than chappatis or rotis. The dough is rolled out and brushed with ghee or oil folded and brushed with ghee or oil again and folded again to form a layered slice. This is then rolled out again. this is then put on a hot griddle and brushed with oil. The heat makes the layers of dough swell and puff, resulting flaky, pastry like flat breads. They may also be used as snacks, lunch-box favorites, light brunch items or traveling munching companions. )


- 2.5 cups chappati flour
- 1 cup water at room temperature
- 1 cup chappati flour in a large plate for dusting the dough while rolling it out
- ghee for brushing the bread

Method to roll out the dough ..
Prepare Basic dough and allow to rest for 1 1/2 to 2 hours. To make triangular-shaped paranthas, divide the dough into peach-size balls. With a rolling pin, roll out 1 ball to a circle 5 inches in diameter.

Brush the circle of dough with ghee, and fold in half to from a crescent then brush again with ghee and fold into a triangle. Seal the edges well. Dust the parantha with finely sieved whole wheat flour and roll into a large, flat triangle or round parantha. Try to make the edges slightly thinner to ensure uniform cooking. Rather than shaping all the parathas at one time, cook each one as the next one is rolled out.

Method of cooking the parantha ...
Preheat a cast-iron tawa over medium heat. Place the rolled dough on the palm of one hand and flip it over on to the tawa. When the color changes on the top and bubbles appear, brush ghee over the surface of the parantha and turn it over. Repeat the process of brushing the parantha on the other side. Keep flipping it over till both sides are browned and spots appear on the parantha. With experience the parantha will puff on the tawa.

To keep the paranthas warm as they are cooked, place them in a towel-lined bowl and fold over the sides of the towel. Serve hot.

~ Chapati ~

Roti/Chapati :

Ingredients to make about 6:

- 2.5 cups chappati flour
- 1 cup water at room temperature made into a dough
- 1 cup chappati flour in a large plate for dusting the dough while rolling it out
- ghee for brushing the bread

Method to roll out the dough:
Prepare the desired amount of dough from the Basic Dough recipe. After resting for 2-2 1/2 hours, knead well. Divide the dough into peach-size balls. On a lightly floured surface, flatten one ball of dough with your hand. Using a rolling-pin, roll out the dough into a thin,round patty, about 5 inches in diameter. Roll from the center, turning patty several times to prevent sticking. Try to make the edges slightly thinner than the center. As you cook the chappati/roti, one could be rolling out the next, rather than shaping all of the chapatis at one time.

Method of cooking the chappati or roti:
Preheat a cast-iron tawa over medium heat. Place the rolled dough on the palm of one hand and flip it over on to the tawa. When the color changes on the top and bubbles appear, turn it over. When both sides are done, use kitchen tongs (chimta) to remove the chapati from the skillet.

Gas Stove:
If you have a gas stove, hold the cooked chapati over a medium flame and it will puff up immediately. Turn quickly to flame-bake the other side. Do this several times, taking care that the edges are well cooked.

Electric Stove:
If you have an electric stove, chapatis can be encouraged to puff by pressing them with a clean kitchen towel after the first turn on each side. Repeat the shaping and cooking process until all chapatis are cooked.

To keep the chapatis warm as they are cooked, place them in a towel-lined bowl and fold over the sides of the towel. Serve hot, either completely dry or topped with a small amount of ghee or butter.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

~ Peanut Butter and Banana Sandwich ~

Peanut Butter and Banana Sandwich :


* 1/2 cup butter, softened
* 3/4 cup crunchy peanut butter
* 3 tablespoons honey
* 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
* 2 to 3 ripe bananas
* 8 slices white bread


* 1/4 cup sugar
* 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon


In a frying pan, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter. Make sure butter does not burn. In a small bowl mix together the peanut butter, honey, and cinnamon. Slice the bananas into 1/4-inch thick slices. Spread the peanut butter mixture on 4 slices of bread and cover with banana slices. Top with the remaining 4 slices of bread. Spread the remaining butter on both sides of the sandwiches. Grill the sandwiches in the frying pan until each side is golden brown.

For topping, combine the sugar and cinnamon in shallow plate. Coat the grilled sandwiches with the mixture. Cut diagonally and serve hot.

~ Chicken Salad Sandwiches ~

Chicken Salad Sandwiches :

Ingredients ...

* 4 split (2 whole) chicken breasts, bone-in, skin on
* Good olive oil
* Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
* 3/4 cup good mayonnaise, plus more for the bread
* 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon leaves
* 1 cup small-diced celery (2 stalks)
* 8 to 10 slices health or seven-grain bread
* 1 package mesclun salad mix

Directions ...

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the chicken breasts, skin side up, on a sheet pan and rub them with olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Set aside to cool.

When the chicken is cool, remove and discard the skin and bones and cut the chicken into 3/4-inch dice. Place the chicken in a bowl and add the mayonnaise, tarragon, celery, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper and toss well.

To assemble, spread a little mayonnaise on half the bread slices, top with the chicken salad and mesclun mix, and cover with the remaining slices of bread. Cut in half and serve.

~ Sausage Pancake Egg Sandwich ~

Sausage Pancake Egg Sandwich :

Ingredients ....


* 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* Pinch salt
* 2 cups milk
* 2 eggs
* 1/4 cup vegetable oil, plus oil for skillet
* Butter, for skillet

For the scrambled eggs:

* 8 eggs
* House Seasoning, to taste, recipe follows
* 2 tablespoons butter
* 4 crumbled cooked sausage patties

For assembly:

* American cheese slices
* Butter
* Maple syrup


Heat a nonstick griddle to medium heat while you prepare the pancake batter. Combine flour and salt. Mix milk, eggs, oil together and add to flour mixture.

Butter your skillet and then add 1/4 cup of oil to the skillet which keeps butter from burning. Ladle about 1/4 cup of the batter, for each pancake, onto the skillet. The bottoms of the pancakes should brown in roughly 2 to 4 minutes. Flip to finish cooking the other side. Cook until lightly golden brown.

Reserve pancakes in a preheated 200 degree F oven until ready to serve.

For the scrambled eggs:

Preheat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat for 1 minute.

Crack eggs into a large mixing bowl and whisk them until the whites and the yolks are

combined. Season with House Seasoning. Add butter to the skillet and allow to melt. Add the eggs and reduce heat to medium-low. Add sausage. Stir frequently until soft small curds have developed. The more you stir the more the creamier the eggs will be. Remove from heat.

For assembly:

Place slice of American cheese on top of pancake, top with scrambled eggs. Top scrambled eggs with another slice of cheese and place another pancake on top. Add a dab of butter and smother with maple syrup.

House Seasoning:

* 1 cup salt
* 1/4 cup black pepper
* 1/4 cup garlic powder

Mix ingredients together and place in a shaker near the stove. Use in place of salt and pepper for all your cooking needs.

~ Sourdough Pancakes ~

Sourdough Pancakes :


* 2 1/2 teaspoons dry yeast
* 1/2 cup warm water (about 110 degrees F)
* 2 cups all-purpose flour
* 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
* 3 1/2 cups whole milk
* 6 to 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
* 2 eggs
* 1 1/2 teaspoons finely ground sea salt

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.

In a medium bowl, mix together the yeast and the warm water. Allow the mixture to rest (and allow the yeast to dissolve) in a warm area of your kitchen, about 5 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine the flour and sugar. Set aside.

In a pot or saucepan over medium heat, heat the milk until it is warm. Do not simmer or boil. Remove the milk from the heat, add 3 tablespoons of the butter and pour into a bowl to cool it slightly before mixing with the other ingredients.

Stir the yeast and water mixture and gently whisk in the flour and sugar. Finish by whisking in the milk mixture. Cover the bowl with a layer of plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place to rest for about 1 hour. What to look for: After about 1 hour (maybe a little longer) the batter should increase in volume and be somewhat "bubbly" in appearance. Cover and refrigerate until the next morning.

Remove the batter from the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature for about 15 minutes. When ready, whisk in the eggs and salt.

Heat a large cast iron pan (or, if preferred, a griddle). Melt 1 tablespoon of the remaining butter. Spoon the batter. Note: if making smaller ones, leave room between each pancake for "spreading". Adjusting the batter: This batter tends to be a little runny. Make a few pancakes. If they are spreading too much or coming out too thin, feel free to whisk in an additional tablespoon or 2 of flour to thicken the batter. Batter too thick? Add another egg or a little milk and blend. Cook each pancake for a couple of minutes until you see bubbles on the surface. Flip on the second side, cooking for another minute. When done, place them on a plate, keeping them covered with foil in the oven until you build up a batch.

(6 to 8 large pancakes)

~ Souffled Pumpkin Pancake ~

Souffled Pumpkin Pancake :

Ingredients ...

* 5 tablespoons butter
* 1 tablespoon brown sugar
* 1/4 cup pecan halves
* 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
* 1/3 cup sugar
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 4 eggs, separated
* 2/3 cup buttermilk
* 1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
* 1 cup pumpkin puree
* Confectioners' sugar, for dusting
* Maple syrup, for serving

Directions ....

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a 10-inch skillet over medium-low heat. Add the brown sugar and stir until the sugar begins to melt. Add the pecans and cook for 2 more minutes. Transfer the pecan mixture to a small dish and set aside. Reserve the skillet for the pancake.

In a small bowl mix together the flour, pumpkin pie spice, sugar and salt. Set aside.

Melt the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter. In a large bowl, add egg yolks, buttermilk, vanilla and melted butter and whisk until blended. Gradually whisk in flour mixture. Stir in the pumpkin puree.

Beat the egg whites until soft peaks form and gently fold into the pumpkin mixture. Gently spoon the batter into the reserved skillet. Sprinkle the top of the pancake mixture with the reserved pecan mixture. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Dust the pancake with confectioners' sugar. Cut into wedges and serve with maple syrup.

~ Basic Waffle ~

Basic Waffle :

Ingredients ...

* 4 3/4 ounces all-purpose flour, approximately 1 cup
* 4 3/4 ounces whole-wheat flour, approximately 1 cup
* 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 3 tablespoons sugar
* 3 whole eggs, beaten
* 2 ounces unsalted butter, melted
* 16 ounces buttermilk, room temperature
* Vegetable spray, for waffle iron

Directions ...

Preheat waffle iron according to manufacturer's directions.

In a medium bowl whisk together the flours, soda, baking powder, salt, and sugar. In another bowl beat together eggs and melted butter, and then add the buttermilk. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until combined. Allow to rest for 5 minutes.

Ladle the recommended amount of waffle batter onto the iron according to the manufacturer's recommendations. Close iron top and cook until the waffle is golden on both sides and is easily removed from iron. Serve immediately or keep warm in a 200 degree F oven until ready to serve.

(approximately 6 (8-inch round) waffles)

Banana Bread ...

Banana Bread :

Ingredients ..

* 1 cup granulated sugar
* 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
* 2 large eggs
* 3 ripe bananas
* 1 tablespoon milk
* 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
* 2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 1 teaspoon salt

Directions ...

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 9 x 5 x 3 inch loaf pan.

Cream the sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

In a small bowl, mash the bananas with a fork. Mix in the milk and cinnamon. In another bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Add the banana mixture to the creamed mixture and stir until combined. Add dry ingredients, mixing just until flour disappears.

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Set aside to cool on a rack for 15 minutes. Remove bread from pan, invert onto rack and cool completely before slicing.

Spread slices with honey or serve with ice cream.