Thursday, August 22, 2013

4th July parade

4th July is the USA’s Independence Day. This day is celebrated with parade, fireworks, and of course parties. This year neither had I planned to host any party, nor was I going to watch those spectacular fireworks. There are some reasons behind my decisions. First of all, unfortunately this year 4th July was in the middle of the week. So, there was no question of taking rest on the next morning after parties. It would be quite hectic coming back from the fireworks too. I had a terrible experience last to last year when we went to watch fireworks at Shoreline drive.  It took 2 hours to came back home when it takes only half an hour to reach home normally. 
This time I didn’t want to take the risk, as I had to wake at 5:30 the next morning. So, spending a quiet 4th July at home would be wise. Suddenly on the previous day HE told to wake up at 6:30 in the morning on 4th July. I asked him what on earth he wanted to do waking up early in the morning on a holiday. He suggested going to 4th July parade. 
The idea sounded good. After all we have never watched a parade like this. Though we couldn’t wake at 6:30 in the morning on 4th July; we weren’t late for the parade. We hurriedly finished out breakfast and headed towards Danville. When we reached people already started thronging there. Most of them came well equipped with umbrellas and chairs. 
HE started walking, without stopping. At last I pulled the rope. I asked him to sit somewhere near, otherwise we would face problem while going back home. Anyway, we found a suitable place to sit on the boulevard. At 11:00 in the morning the parade started with the police, military, and Vietnam War veteran. I couldn’t say it was a dazzling extravaganza, but it was really fun to watch. We could watch a military helicopter, which came very close to the ground only for the spectators. We could watch many things, which may not be ever possible to see, though they are very trivial thing, but it was really interesting ones, like a vintage paramedics and a vintage police car. We really saw some beautiful cars with different sizes and shapes. We left the parade, when it was about to end to avoid the traffic. After coming back home we again had to cook our lunch. We finished the lunch with very simple Indian meal. Actually my plan was to make something especial for the dinner. 

Since past few days I was thinking about the 4th July dinner. I had been tossing different dinner ideas before I decided to bake pizza and Chai-Masala cake. Thanks to fellow my bloggers “Color and spice” and “Scratching Canvas” to providing wonderful recipes of pizza and cake respectively. Both of the dishes turned out awesome. I myself almost finished the cake in next few days. Having dinner with homemade pizza and cake while watching movie, made a wonderful ending to the 4th July. 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Cabbage cup cake



Before forgetting the recipe I should write it down. Yes, this happens with me many times. I cook something, according to someone’s recipe or mine, and eventually I forget the recipe. Long back, I think in the year of 2008, while I was watching TV; I came to know a very interesting chicken recipe. I cooked that 2-3 times, and after that for some reason I stopped cooking that. Eventually I totally forgot the recipe and even the name of it. Now, even I want to find the recipe on the Internet, it is not possible for me to do that. Another time, similar things happened with my sister. One day she cooked a delicious capsicum curry. After that both of totally forgot the recipe, and we couldn’t able to cook the same dish after. Another time I found out an interesting recipe of rice flour cake, and I tried that. The cake turned out very soft and fluffy, but I again I made the same mistake. I neither wrote down the recipe nor did I bookmark the page. Few days ago when one of my friends asked me to give her the recipe, I couldn’t find it out. All those little incidents made me wise. Now onwards I’ll write down all the recipes. My latest interest is to making recipe journal. Although I publish me recipes with some journaling, but now I’ll do in pen and paper also. Anyway, this is the time stop jabbering and writing down the recipe of cabbage cup cake.

 

Ingredient:

One cup grated cabbage

Half cup all purpose flour

One egg

One tsp. baking powder

One tsp baking soda

One-fourth cup oil ( I used olive oil)

Salt to taste

A dash of sugar

Black olive ( I used canned black olive. If you use the same, then first add olive into the batter, and check the saltiness. Then add salt.)

 

Method:

To make one cup of grated cabbage, you need one-fourth of a medium sized cabbage. Sift flour in a big bowl. Mix all the dry ingredients first (except salt).  Add the eggs and bit with the mixer. Keep on adding cabbage and olive while mixing. It will form a smooth batter. Check the salt , then add salt according to your taste.  Pour the batter equally in a 6-cups, cup-cake pan. Bake for 20 mins, or a inserted fork comes

out clean. Serve warm with tea or coffee. 

 

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Spicy Fish Curry


The other day while I was cooking fish, I wanted to make a little twist in the normal fish curry with mustard paste. I already made a paste of onion and tomato to cook cottage cheese. So, I thought to use the rest of that paste in the fish curry. Again I thought that; then the two curries were going to be of same taste. I needed to use some more extra spices with that paste. I found a small container of mustard paste in my refrigerator. Mustard paste, tomato-onion paste, and what else? Why not a little bit of coconut paste? Yes!!! The final dish tasted awesome.
Ingredients:
Five –six big pieces of pompano fish
One medium sized tomato
One medium sized onion
One tbsp. ginger paste
One tbsp. garlic paste
One tbsp. of mustard paste
Two tbsp. of grated coconut ( If you can use fresh coconut, that’ll be the best. I only had dry flex of coconut. So I made a paste with coconut flex and ¼ cup of milk.)
Salt to taste
Pinch of turmeric powder
Two tbsp. of oil for gravy ( I used olive oil.)
Sufficient of oil to fry the fish pieces
Two green chilies


Method:
Cut the tomato and onion into big cubes. Take a sauce pan, put the onion and tomato, and one cup water into it. Boil in medium heat until the onion becomes translucent. Switch off the gas and let it cool down for a while, then a make a fine paste. In a heavy-bottom wok over medium-high heat, heat oil. Fry the fish pieces, until slightly red on the both sides. Set them aside. In the same wok, heat tbsp. of oil, over medium-high heat. Add the paste until oil starts oozing out, stirring occasionally. Add ginger and garlic paste, and fry for few minutes until the raw smell dies down. Add coconut paste and fry for few minutes. Add two cups of water , and increase the heat. Lastly add mustard paste, salt, slitted chilies, turmeric powder, and the fish. Boil the curry covering the wok until the fish pieces become tender, and the gravy reaches to the desired consistency.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Rasgulla curry


Few days ago I bought one gallon of milk from a superstore, but the milk didn’t taste good. I didn’t like to drink that detested milk. I was totally clueless to do with one gallon of milk. I didn’t want to make any kind of sweet, I knew that it was not going to taste good. Then I remembered that once my friend J, who is an amazing cook, posted a picture of “rasgulla curry” in Facebook. I searched in her account and found out the photo. My sweet friend also posted the recipe there. She comprehended in such a nice way, I found that was very easy to make. Here I’m giving her recipe here.

Ingredients:

For rasgulla:

One gallon full cream milk

One cup Sugar

Enough lemon juice to curdle the milk (I used two big lemons)

A big bowl of cold water

For gravy:

One cup canned peeled tomato ( I used raw tomato. I made a paste after boiling them in little water)

One big onion

One tbsp ginger paste

One tbsp garlic paste

Cashew nut

Two-three green chili

Coriander leaves

Half  tsp. Shahi jeera (white cumin seeds)

Pinch of turmeric powder

One fourth tsp. red chili powder

One tbsp. Kasoori methi

One fourth cup fresh cream

Three tsp. sugar

Salt to taste

Four tbsp Ghee ( I used olive oil)

Method:

Rasgulla:

Keep the milk out or refrigerator to bring it up in room temperature, otherwise while boiling the milk; otherwise it’ll scorch on the bottom. Put the milk in a big saucepan over medium heat. When the milk starts boiling squeeze the two lemons into it. (Though I squeezed the lemon pieces, I was unable to make it curdle. Getting frustrated I put the pieces of lemons into the milk, and then it curdled. How funny!! ) take out the cottage cheese from the whey. Tie it in a muslin cloth and hang it from somewhere to shed the whey for 5-7 minutes. Don’t shed much of the whey; otherwise the rasgullas will be hard. Then put the cheese in some plain place, and knead until it becomes a smooth paste. Make small balls out of the cheese lump. Don’t make big balls, because the balls will swell up when you put them into boiling water. Add few cups of water and one cup sugar in the pressure cooker. When the water starts boiling add few of the cheese balls. Don’t add many one at a time, because in the course of time they will swell up and they won’t get room to expand inside the pressure cooker. You can put the cheese balls according to the size of your pressure cooker. I could put maximum six balls one at a time in my pressure cooker. In the first whistle blow, keep the pressure cooker on medium flame until two more whistles. Soon stop the stove and put the cooker under running cold water to release the pressure. Then open the lid and slowly take out the rasgullas from the cooker and put them in a big bowl of cold water. 

 

Gravy:

 Take a heavy bottomed wok, add canned peeled tomato, cubed onion, ginger paste, garlic paste, one cup cashew nuts, coriander leaves, and one cup water. Bring the mixture into boil. When tomato will be totally cooked, put off the stove. Make a fine paste of the mixture.

In a wok over medium-high heat, heat ghee (or oil). Add cumin seeds into it. When cumin seeds start to crackle, add turmeric powder and red chili powder. Stir for a minute, and add the already prepared paste. Stir the gravy continuously. As the gravy is very thick, it will spatter a lot, so be careful. Add one-two cups of water (you can add more water, according to you desired consistency). Add salt and sugar into it. Slightly squeeze out water from the rasgullas and add into the gravy. When the gravy starts thickening, add fresh cream and kasoori methi. Switch off the gas. Serve hot with roti or paratha.