Lesuni Paneer Tikka

This is a recipe I have taken the liberty to share from one of my favorite cook books. I have made this many times and each time it turns out to be a mouth watering delight.

It uses the tandoor method of cooking and tastes best made on a charcoal grill but if you don’t have one don’t worry, you can still make this in an oven.

Ingredients

250 gm cottage cheese (paneer)

2 teaspoons garlic paste

2 teaspoons tandoori masala (available at any grocer or Indian store)

½ cup drained yogurt or greek style yogurt. To make this hang the yogurt in a muslin cloth till its creamy and all the whey has drained out

3 & ½ teaspoons fresh cream

1 green chili chopped fine

2 teaspoons chopped fresh coriander

Salt to taste

1 teaspoon red chili powder

½ teaspoon turmeric powder

1 & ½ teaspoons garam masala powder

1 teaspoon carom seed powder

1 teaspoon chaat masala

4 teaspoons roasted gram flour

1 teaspoon vinegar

2 teaspoons mustard or any vegetable oil

Method

Mix all the ingredients except the cottage cheese in a bowl and make a masala paste.

Cut the cottage cheese into large cubes. Coat in the marinade an set aside in the refrigerator for 2 hours.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees centigrade. Thread on skewers one inch apart

Cook in the preheated oven for 10 minutes till golden. If you have a tandoor cook it over moderate heat for 6-8 minutes.

Serve hot with mint chutney and onion rings. This can be made with colocasia or potato too.

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Herb Roast Vegetables

This recipe is a brilliant side dish to any main course. It is also so easy that you can leave it in the oven and forget all about it till its ready to eat.

I love the colors in this dish and it can take just about any vegetable and turn it into something delicious.

Ingredients

Mixed Vegetables (10 florets Broccoli,  2 Bell Peppers, one red and one yellow, 10 cherry tomatoes)

4-5 Cloves Garlic (whole, unpeeled)

2 Teaspoons Oregano

2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper to taste

1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Method

Grease a baking tray with 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Arrange all the vegetables on the tray. Sprinkle oregano, salt and pepper. Place a few garlic cloves under the vegetables, drizzle with olive oil. Now grill on high in a preheated oven at 250 degrees centigrade for 25 mins till the vegetables are all lightly charred. Serve hot or cold with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. Toss well before serving.

You may use other vegetables such as sliced Zucchini, Eggplant, Onions, Asparagus etc..

Raisin Tart

This amazing recipe is from one of my favorite chocolate cookbooks. The flavors and textures of this tart are heavenly and every time I make it I get many compliments. The original recipe calls for black or red cherries but I substitute it with black raisins and it tastes just as good if not better. Serve this with vanilla ice cream or fresh whipped cream.

Ingredients

175 gm plain flour

A pinch of salt

1 Tablespoon caster sugar

115 gm unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces

Vanilla ice cream or fresh whipped cream to serve

 

 

 

Tart filling

125 gm unsalted butter at room temperature

125 gm caster sugar

2 large eggs beaten

2 teaspoons kirsch or 1 teaspoon almond essence

125 gm ground almonds

75 gm plain chocolate finely chopped, plus 40gm extra melted to decorate

400 gm black raisins or cherries pitted

You will also need a loose – based flan tin, 24cm diameter buttered, baking paper and baking beans or any dried beans

Method

To make the pastry in a food processor, put the flour, salt, sugar and butter into the machine and process till crumbly. You can even do this by hand but do not overwork the mixture. With the machine add 3 tablespoons of iced water through the feeding tube till the pastry comes together. If you have dry crumbs add a little more water till you have firm dough. Wrap in cling film and chill for 15 minutes in the refrigerator.

Unwrap and put the pastry on a lightly floured surface and roll out a large circle about 4 cm more than your flan tin (i.e. 28cm diameter)

Lift the pastry gently and line the prepared flan tin. Press into corners and fluting and remove excess pastry from the top of the tin. Prick the base all over with a fork and chill for another 15 minutes.

Line the pastry tin with a piece of baking paper that contains baking beans or any dried beans. Bake the pastry in preheated oven at 190 degree centigrade for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes of baking remove the paper and beans and bake for another 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let it cool.

To make the filling, put butter, sugar into a mixing bowl and using a wooden spoon or electric beater, whisk till light and fluffy. Gradually add the eggs and kirsch or almond essence. Fold in the ground almonds and flour.

Scatter the chopped chocolate on the pastry base and top it with raisins. Spoon the almond mixture on top and spread evenly. Bake in preheated oven at 190 degrees centigrade for 30 minutes till golden and firm. Remove and let it cool.

To finish, drizzle the melted chocolate over the top with a fork and leave it to set.

Serve with vanilla ice cream or fresh whipped cream.

Mexican Burrito

Image courtesy gregoreehub.hubpages.com

 

 

Mexican burritos are very filling and nutritious, my version of this is made using soya granules instead of meat which is great for vegetarians or people who do not enjoy red meat.

Serves 4 (serving size 2 burritos)

 

 

 

 

 

Ingredients

For the burrito

8 Burrito wraps (either wheat or corn tortillas)

1 head of iceberg or lollo rosso lettuce torn to bits

Burrito filling (3 tablespoon per burrito)

100 gms tomato salsa (recipe on Ladle N Spoon)

100 gms gucamole (recipe on Ladle N Spoon)

200 gm cheddar cheese grated

30gm pickled jalapeno chopped fine

1 onion cut into rings

For the filling

150 gm soya granules, boiled for a minute in salted water

1 large red onion chopped fine

2 teaspoons garlic paste

1 teaspoon ginger paste

2 teaspoons cayenne pepper or red chili powder

1 teaspoon pepper

2 teaspoons cumin powder

Salt to taste

2 large tomatoes skinned and chopped fine

Coriander or cilantro chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

Method

Making the filling

Heat olive oil in a skillet. Add the chopped onion and brown till golden. Add ginger and garlic paste and saute till the raw smell of garlic has evaporated. Add tomatoes and cilantro. Saute till the oil leave the sides of the pan.

 

 

Add the dry spices and saute for another 5 mins. Squeeze out all the water from the soya granules and add to the onion tomato mix. Add salt to taste. Cook for 5 mins stirring occasionally.

The mixture should brown well. Lastly add the remaining cilantro to the mix. Allow it to cool a little before making the burritos.

 

Making the burritos

Heat a roti pan, toast the tortillas a little on each side. Layer it first with lettuce, followed by the burrito filling, , tomato salsa, guacamole, jalapenos, onion rings and lastly cheese. Roll the burrito and enjoy! You may add all sorts of other interesting stuff to your burrito such as sour cream, oilves, red cabbage etc..

Simple Guacamole

Photo: Ralph Anderson, Courtesy myrecipes.com
Photo: Ralph Anderson, Courtesy myrecipes.com

Guacamole is versatile dip and can add texture and flavor to wraps, chips, bruschetta, crackers etc… This simple recipe needs just 10 mins

Ingredients

2 ripe avocados

1 red onion

1 fresh red chilli

1 tablespoon lime juice

Salt to taste

Pepper to taste

1 large red tomato

2 cloves of garlic crushed

1 teaspoon on cilantro chopped fine

Method

Cut the avocado in half, de-stone and scoop out the ripe inside flesh. Mash in a bowl but remember to keep a few chunky bits. Add the garlic, chopped red onion, tomato, cilantro, lime juice, chili, salt and pepper. Stir all the ingredients well. Serve chilled with tortilla chips.