Caramelised Figs with Honey and Cinnamon Ice Cream

Confession time , I was not into figs until recently ….

Figs are in season and hence the fig overload ūüôā

Figs-Honeycomb-Cinnamon-Ice cream

Roasted figs, drizzled with honey and served with cinnamon ice cream  РHeaven! Honestly , tell me , who wouldn’t fall in love with this combination.

I am sucker for quick and easy desserts and anything that calls for fruits. For some reason , the guilt of consuming sweets is tempered  with the fact that it is loaded with healthy vitamins , antioxidants and fibre .

I am going to let the flavour explosion , speak for itself .

Go ahead  and try this out , you can thank me later .Caramelised Figs- with- Honey and- Cinnamon- Ice Cream

Ingredients:

6 medium figs(360 gms)

500 gms fresh Honeycomb or 5 tbsp Honey

5oo ml Vanilla Ice cream, Softened .

2 tsp ground cinnamon

Extra honey  to drizzle on top (optional)

Directions:

1.Cut figs in half lengthways  , cook the figs on heated, oiled ,  barbecue or a hot plate until browned .

2. cut the honeycomb into 2 cm strip , you can find this in health food stores . If you are not a fan of honeycombs , you can add honey instead.

3. combine cinnamon and ice -cream in a medium bowl.

4. drizzle honey on  hot figs and serve  with cinnamon ice- cream and honeycomb.

Alternatively,   for kids,

1.chop the figs finely .

2.add figs and honey to a non stick pan and  roast for 1-2 mins  until caramelised and sticky .

3.Place  figs on top of ice-cream , dust with cinnamon and serve .

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what is your favourite fig recipes ? Please feel free to share .

 

Spicy Tuna Curry

Calling ¬†tuna lovers who are bored of eating tuna for salad, to try ¬†this Tuna ¬†Curry ‚Äď which ¬†is one of my ¬†all-time favourites!

Tuna-Curry

Canned  tuna , along with some basic spices is all that is required to make  this tasty dish.

I survived on Canned tuna ,yoghurt and  rice when I was in university . I am sure this tuna curry  will be your life saver  too  when you  are in need  of a quick fix !

As long as you have  the basic spices ,  this recipe shouldn’t take more than 10 mins to prepare.

Tuna-Curry

Tuna-Curry

tuna-curry

Ingredients:

1 can (425 gms) Tuna in spring water

1 medium onion , finely chopped

2 tomatoes, finely chopped

1 green or red chilli Chopped

1 tsp ginger garlic paste

1 sprig of curry leaves , roughly chopped (optional)

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

Salt , to taste

1/4 tsp chilli powder (optional)

1 tbsp coriander leaves , roughly chopped (optional)

1 tbps oil

1/2 tsp black mustard seeds(optional)

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in a non- stick pan , add curry leaves , followed by mustard seeds, please watch out as  mustard seeds may splutter .
  2. Add chopped onion, saute  well,  until translucent.
  3. Add ginger garlic paste , saute well , add chopped chilli followed by turmeric powder. Mix well.
  4. Add chopped tomatoes  followed by salt and chilli powder. Mix well , cover and   cook for 3 mins .
  5. Add tuna and mix gently. Cook ¬†for 6 to 8 mins until the water evaporates and the gravy becomes thick .Don’t stir too much as ¬†fish can break up and become mushy.
  6. Add chopped coriander leaves , mix and serve with rice .

I beleive recipes are just guidelines not to be followed exactly , experiments with different ingredients.You can subsitute  pepper powder if you are allergic to chillies ,  parsley  instead of coriander leaves .  Basically, have fun  and  get inspired !

 

 

Easiest Ever Vegetable Biryani

Vegetable - Briyani

Vegetarian ? No worries.

Vegetable - Briyani

Why not try this simple vegetable biryani ,with full of flavour and textures . This is similar to my Mutton Biryani except that, this version relies on vegetables instead of meat .

Rice is one of weakness , I know, I lost my Paleo friends right there , But wait, hear me out,  first .

Rice keeps me full , satiated and above all no bloating. This works for me because I love rice and anything to do with rice , right from Risotto, Briyani’s, Fried rice , Kichidi ,Rice Pudding the list goes on .Basically I eat what feels right for me .

Rice is a grain that is usually allergy free and is a staple grain of more than fifty percent of the world’s population.And, as I far as I know, this fifty percent of the world’s population is way healthier than the rest who are deciding whether to eat rice or not .No pressure ; do what feels right for you .

Everything in moderation ,Remember?!

Vegetable Biryani

Vegetable - Biryani

Preparation time : 10 mins

Cooking time : 30 mins

Serves : 4

Ingredients :

Carrot – 1 medium sized chopped.

Potato – 1 medium sized , cubed.

Green beans – 10 to 15 , trimmed and cut into 3 pieces

1/2 cup frozen peas

Spanish Onion ‚Äď 2 medium sized ,sliced.

Tomato -1 medium sized, chopped .

Ginger garlic paste ‚Äď 2 tablespoons

Cloves -4

Cinnamon bark ‚Äď 3

Bay leaves ‚Äď 2

Star Anise ‚Äď 1 or 2 ( optional)

Green chillies ‚Äď 2 or more ‚Äď depending upon your taste.

Mint leaves- ¬Ĺ cup roughly chopped .

Coriander leaves ‚Äď ¬ľ cup,roughly chopped.

Basmati rice‚Äď 3 cups (1 kg )

Sunflower oil ‚Äď ¬Ĺ cup

Ghee ‚Äď 2 tablespoons

Salt ‚Äď According to taste

Chilli Powder ‚Äď ¬Ĺ teaspoon ‚Äď optional.

Lemon -1/2 a lemon juiced

Water ‚Äď 4 ¬Ĺ cups or reserved vegetable stock

Directions:

1.Wash the rice , drain and set aside . Depending upon the quality and age of the basmati rice , soak it in water for 10 mins (I usually skip this step as I use India Gate Classic (aged ) Basmati rice )

2.Boil chopped carrot , beans and potato for 10 mins by adding 3 to 4 cups of water and a pinch of salt , until the vegetable are slightly cooked .Drain the vegetable and reserve the stock .

3.Meanwhile , heat the heavy bottomed pan and add oil and ghee .Season the oil with cinnamon, star anise , cloves and bay leaves. Watch out for the cloves, they may splutter .

4.Then add the sliced onions and sauté until the onion turns translucent , add a pinch of salt to the onions which will help to draw moisture out of the onions and quicken the sautéing process .Then add the green chillies , followed by ginger garlic paste , sauté for 2 or 3 seconds.Please take time to add the ingredients and saute for1 or 2 mins . This is important to diffuse flavour into the oil and enhances the taste.

5.Add handful of mint leaves , sauté well , followed by tomatoes . Cook the tomatoes for a 2 or 3 minutes until they are soft and mushy , this is going to be our gravy for the biryani .

6. Add cooked vegetables , mix well , add salt as required .

7. Place the washed rice in the rice cooker and add the prepared vegetable gravy. Mix well.

8.Add 4 ¬Ĺ cups of water . Use the reserved stock instead of water .Mix well . check the seasoning ( this is where you add salt / chilli powder ).

9.Add a pinch of extra salt than you’d normally consume as the rice will absorb the salt.

10.Stir in lemon juice and the coriander leaves .Put the lid on and set it to cook.

11.when ready , add the frozen peas , mix the rice with a long handled wooden spoon from the bottom , please take care not to stir, but , to lift the rice from underneath and mix.

Serve with Onion or Cucumber Raita .

Onion Riata :

Onion -Tomato - Raita
Ingredients :

2 medium onion

1 tomato

1 small cucumber

1 green chilli (optional)

1 tsp of chopped coriander

1 tsp chopped mint

1 cup natural yoghurt.

1/4 cumin powder

1/2 tsp sugar.

Salt – according to taste .

Directions:

1.Finely chop onion , tomato , cucumber and chilli .

2.In a bowl , beat the yoghurt until smooth .

3.Add cumin and sugar to the yoghurt and mix well.

4.Add the chopped onion , tomato , cucumber chilli , mint and coriander leaves and salt . Mix well.

Serve with Biryani or Pulao.

Fig , Potato & Cottage cheese koftas in Tomato Cashew Sauce

fig-potato-cottage-cheese-koftas-in-tomato-cashew-sauce

Creaminess of  cottage cheese and potato  , combined with the sweetness of  figs , balanced  with a hint of chillies  and finished off in  rich , tangy  tomato cashew-nut sauce. In other words , a must try !
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Potato Cottage cheese  Koftas stuffed with Fig
Ingredients
Р1  (150 gms ) medium Potato boiled  and grated
Р100 gms cottage cheese  grated
Р1 tbsp  corn flour(for binding)
– ¬ľ tsp pepper powder
Рpinch of  Salt
Р5 dried figs soaked  in hot  water
– 1 cup Sunflower Oil ‚Äď to shallow fry ¬†the koftas

Tomato Cashew nut sauce
– 2 medium tomatoes
– 2 green chillies
Р50gms roasted  cashews
Р1 tsp ginger  paste
– ¬Ĺ teaspoon cumin seeds
– 1/2 tsp turmeric
– 1/2 chilli powder
– 1/2 coriander powder
– 1/2 tsp garam masala powder
– Salt according to taste
Р2 tbsp sunflower  oil
– 1 tbsp fresh Cream

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Directions

  1. Combine grated potatoes and  cottage cheese , season with salt and pepper.Add Corn Flour and mix well . Knead to  a smooth dough .
  2. Drain the figs from water , pat dry and chop  finely
  3. Divide the dough into small portions . Roll each  portions into 1/2 inch balls .Dust your hands with corn flour  , take one portion at a  time and flatten the kofta . Fill the kofa with figs and roll it into a round ball.Repeat with the remaining koftas .
  4. Heat oil in a Wok , fry the kofta till golden brown , drain on paper towel
  5. Blend the tomatoes , cashews and chilies with little water  in a food processor to a smooth paste .
  6.  Heat oil in a non-stick pan , add cumin , let it splutter .
  7. Add, ginger paste and  fry well , now add tomato -cashew paste , mix well.Add a little water if the sauce is too thick .please use a long handled ladle or spoon to mix the sauce as  the tomato -cashew paste may splutter while cooking.
  8.  Add turmeric , chilli powder and coriander powder (Basic spice mixture). Mix well . Add a little  hot water if the sauce is too thick. Add garam masala powder .Mix Well. Bring the sauce to a boil ,then, reduce the flame and simmer the sauce  for 2 to 3 mins .
  9. The sauce is ready when the oil starts to surface on top .
  10. Just before serving add the koftas and gently coat with the  sauce .*
  11. Remove  from the heat and add fresh cream  , Garnish with chopped coriander and serve .IMG_1611

Margarita Blush & Pineapple Basil Breeze

Invitation was extended, entrée got served, mains and desserts  to come .

Just when you thought you were only being served Entrée how about for main course  we have potato & cottage cheese  balls with stuffed figs  in  tomato- cashew gravy ,Vegetable Briyani  served with onion, tomato and cucumber  Raita.

Finishing it off with Caramelised Figs with honey and cinnamon ice cream–¬† . Phew!Hello smoothie!!

But wait, the invitation was extended during Easter week so technically, indulgence is allowed.Right?!

While I walk you through the steps, why don‚Äôt you¬†make yourself comfortable with this ‚ÄėMargarita Blush’ or ‚ÄėPineapple Basil Breeze’

Margarita Blush

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Serves 4

Preparation 15 mins

Ingredients:

2 tbs coarsely ground sea salt

1 lime wedge

1/2 cup Tequila

2/3 cup lime juice cordial

1 cup cranberry-raspberry juice

2 cups crushed ice

extra lime slices (garnish)

Directions:

  1. Spread salt over a plate .Run lime wedge around the rim of four glass tumblers.
  2. Dip rims in salt to coat
  3. Pour tequila, cordial and juice into a large jug . Stir to combine.
  4. Just before serving , divide crushed ice among tumblers , divide tequila mixture over ice .
  5. Serve with lime slices .IMG_1564 (1)

Pineapple Basil Breeze

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Serves 2

Preparation 10 mins

Ingredients

¬Ĺ cup fresh pineapple pieces

8 fresh Thai basil leaves

1 cup bottled pineapple juice

¬ľ cup Vodka

11/2 cups crushed ice

375 ml lemonade, chilled

Directions

  1. Divide pineapple piece’s and basil leaves between two glass tumblers
  2. Pour pineapple juice and vodka into a jug and stir to combine.
  3. Place ¬ĺ cup of the crushed ice into each tumbler, divide the vodka mixture over ice . Top with lemonade .Stir to combine and serve.IMG_1516IMG_1518

Coconut Macaroons

Coconut Macaroons

coc mac

Actually I intended to attempt macarons first, but, somehow got sidetracked and ended up baking macaroons instead .

What ¬†is the difference you ask ¬†? well , macarons- ¬†is made of egg whites , almond meal ¬†and sugar and looks like a macaron , that is , if you are lucky ¬†ūüėČ

Macaroon- is made of  egg  whites , coconut flakes and sugar. you don’t  have to be lucky with this one , they just turn out to be this  incredibly soft and chewy  macaroons  even on your un -lucky baking day !

coc mac 2

Recipe  adapted from Penny Shawana

TOTAL TIME: Prep: 10 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling

Yield: about 1-1/2 dozen.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions :

Preheat oven to¬†165¬į (365 F).

Line a baking tray with baking sheet (parchment paper )

In a small bowl, combine the coconut, sugar, flour and salt. Stir in egg whites and vanilla; mix well.

Drop ¬†spoonful of coconut mixture on the prepared baking sheet. Bake at 165¬į (365 F) for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.

Notes :

Bake time and temperature may vary depending on your oven . to avoid burning , rotate the tray to ensure even baking.

Indian Lemonade

 

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Lemonade with a twist ¬†– the ‘twist’ is to add bruised mint leaves and¬† honey ‚Äď this sweet /sour combination ¬†¬†with a hint of¬† mint¬† is sure to knock your taste buds off !

Indian Lemonade

2 medium-sized limes  juiced

1 litre of water

1/ 4 cup  Caster sugar

2 tbsp. of honey

Pinch of salt

5-6  mint leaves bruised and juiced.

A pinch of baking soda (optional ‚Äď this is to neutralise the acidity , but totally optional)

Ice Cubes to serve

Directions :

  1. Place sugar in a tall jar , add  lime juice , baking soda (optional)*, salt , mint (leaves and juice). Mix well .
  2. Add honey , mix well . Now top up with water , Mix well .
  3. Add ice cubes and serve .

*Please note that when baking soda is added to lime a slight effervescent reaction will occur.This is Ayurvedic remedy to neutralize heart burn and stomach acid.

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Spicy Prawn Cakes with Coriander dipping sauce

Coming at you ¬†– Indian ¬†Lemonade , Spicy Prawn ¬†Cakes and¬†Coriander Dipping sauce ¬† ‚Äď entr√©e sorted¬† !

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If you are coming over to my house for  lunch , what would I offer ?hmmm.. how about these spicy prawn cakes with coriander dipping sauce and Indian lemonade  for starters?

These Prawn balls are Sweet, Sour, hot and salty  with full of flavours of  chilli , lime, coriander and spring onions combined with the  fresh coriander dipping sauce to cut the bold flavours  and  just to tantalize the  taste buds  further , just serve this  with  Indian  Lemonade . SOLD !

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Spicy Prawn Cakes:

Preparation time: 15 mins

Cooking time : 15 mins

Makes : 8-10 Prawn balls

Ingredients:

500 gms (1 lb) green (raw) Prawns

1 tbsp fish sauce

1 green chilli, chopped

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1/2 tsp turmeric

2 tbsp chopped coriander (Cilantro) roots and leaves

2 spring onions, finely sliced

plain flour (all – purpose flour)

Panko breadcrumbs

1 cup vegetable oil

Directions:

1.Add the prawns , fish sauce, chilli, garlic, turmeric  and coriander in a food processor and process to a paste .

2.Fold in spring onions.

3.Shape prawn mixture into little balls , and roll in flour to coat lightly and then in panko bread crumbs.

4. Heat vegetable oil in a deep frying pan until hot. Add prawn balls and shallow fry until golden brown.Remove and drain on paper towels.

Serve with Coriander dipping sauce .

Coriander Dipping sauce:

3 cloves of garlic

2 green chillies(seeded and roughly chopped)

1 tbsp palm sugar

4 tbsp lime juice

3 tsp fish sauce

1 cup roughly chopped coriander (cilantro)

Directions:

Place all the ingredients in a blender with 3 tbps of water  and blend until combined .

Pour into a small serving bowl .

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Brigadeiro ‚Äď Brazilian Chocolate Truffles

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On this side of the world the supermarkets  started selling  hot cross buns in January  .For a minute then , I thought  Good Friday had come early . Supermarkets started  selling hot cross buns on customer demands . Really ?!?! I just then  finished celebrating  Christmas . Hello supermarkets !!!  let us digest the food  that we ate for Christmas  first !!!

Anyway, now that Easter is just around ¬†the corner , I ¬†thought of posting ‚ÄėBrigadeiro‚Äô (Brazilian chocolate fudge ball ).

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The name may sound a bit complicated, but, these truffles  are soooo easy to make .

If you are pressed for time ,these fudgy, chewy ‚Äď chocolate caramel ¬†balls¬† will definitely come to your rescue .

All you need is condensed milk , unsweetened cocoa powder  and butter , if you are a fan of the combination already , wait till you taste it !

You  certainly can’t go wrong with this recipe .

Total Time:

2 hr 15 min includes  chilling

Cook:10- 20 min
Yield:15 truffles

Ingredients:

1 can (395 g/14 ounce  )condensed milk

3 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder

¬Ĺ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons butter + more for rolling

Decoration:

shredded coconut for coating

chocolate candy coloured candy  sprinkles for coating

Directions :

1.Grease a  large shallow dish with butter . Set Aside .

2.Add little water(1 tbps)  to the cocoa powder and mix well so that there are no lumps .  This  would make step 3 easier , when you  mix the cocoa powder with the condensed milk.

3.In a medium non ‚Äď stick saucepan , add condensed milk , cocoa mixture¬† and butter¬† over medium heat , stirring constantly with a wooden spoon .

4.Reduce the heat to medium low and cook for 15 to 20 mins  until shiny and  thick  and start to pull away from the bottom and side of the pan .  This is ready  when  the  mixture takes a bit to come together when  the wooden spoon is dragged  through the middle .

4.Pour the mixture  into the shallow pan . Cool Completely (Refrigerate  to quicken the cooling time ).

5.Arrange the paper cups  on a baking tray , place the  decorating  ingredients in separate small bowls .  Rub your hands with butter .Use teaspoons or a melon scoop to scoop the truffle mixture  and roll them  into balls .

6.Roll  the  truffles in the sprinkles and set them in  a paper cup .Serve chilled or at room temperature .

Can be stored  in the refrigerator  up to 5 days in an airtight container .

Variations :

The chocolate balls can be rolled  in toasted chopped pistachios , slices almonds or in finely chopped dry fruits.

Recipe Adapted from Giada De Laurentis