Easy Onion Rings


This recipe is so easy, you can make it faster than reheating the frozen rings ūüôā

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Cut the onion in rings. I am using white onions, I have tried with red onions too. So yellow, white , red…they are all good.Image

 

The shortcut to the batter is to use ¬†pancake mix . To ¬†cup of pancake mix , add red chilli powder,¬†garlic powder,¬†a pinch of salt.¬†In case you can’t get pancake mix, you can make your own as below :
1/2 cup flour
3/4 tsp salt
pepper
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 egg beaten
1/2 cup milk

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Add water to make a batter, the batter doesn’t have to be smooth. consistency similar to bajji/pakora batter.Image
 
Bread crumbs ( any kind, regular, panko or pulsed cornflakes).Image
 
Dip the onion rings in the batter and then roll them in bread crumbs.Image
 
These are ready to be fried. Image
 
Fry the rings in oil to golden brown.Image
 
Coating with bread crumbs is optional. I prefer just batter fried rings… kids do love the crunch of the bread crumbs.Image
 
To make a simple dipping sauce : Mix your favorite hot sauce with your favorite ranch.
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Wasn’t that easy ? ūüôā
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Oats Kichadi


Tired of eating oats with maple, brown sugar, cinnamon and fruits…try this savory oats recipe for a change…Image

Soak 1 cup of green grams (whole moong) for about 4 hours.

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Cook the green grams thoroughly. (I pressure cooked them).

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Plain oats – 1 cup.

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Onions,¬†Tomatoes,¬†Green chillies (I’ve used two),¬†garlic – chopped,¬†grated carrots,¬†green beans

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In a pan, heat a spoon of oil and fry cumin seeds. Then sauté the green chillies, garlic and onions.

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Saute carrots and green beans (you can add vegetables of your choice) and finally add the chopped tomatoes.

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After the veggies soften add 2.5 cups of water

(1 cup of oatmeal : 2.5 cups of water)

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When water boils add the oats. I am using quick oats. Check the box for cooking time and water quantity.
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Cook for about 5 mins. If needed add more water and add salt to taste. Once the oats are cooked , stir in the cooked green grams and sook in low hear for another 5 mins.

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For seasoning : black pepper and cumin Рcrushed, chopped ginger, curry leaves
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Heat a spoon of oil and fry the pepper, cumin, curry leaves and ginger.
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Mix with the cooked oats.
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For garnish and to add texture, dry roast some nuts. I roast them in microwave for about a minute.Image
Top the oats with the dry roasted nut, chopped carrots and herbs of your choice. I’ve used curry leaves here.This is a complete meal with whole grains, lentils, vegetables and nuts.

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Mysorepak


Mysorepak is one such sweet , that you can’t just read a recipe, do it and get it right. There is a rhythm to the making of it and you have to do atleast a couple of times to find your own and make mysorepaks with the melt in your mouth texture and yet not like a burfi. I had the hardest time taking pics for this recipe as in the last 5 minutes things happen really fast , and managing the camera and the stirring was a challenge. However, I hope if you are looking for a mysorepak recipe this could help you.Image
Besan (chick peas flour)- 1 cup
Sugar – 2 cups
water – 1/2 cup
Ghee – 1 cup
flavorless oil – 1 cup(I like the mix of ghee and oil, when you use just ghee, the texture doesn’t come right…it comes out very soft , like a burfi. And we won’t be fully using the 2 cups of ghee and oil mix, but its always better to have this amount on hand ready, coz’ while making the mysorepak, if you need more ghee/oil…it would be too late.)Image

Mix 1 cup of ghee and 1 cup of oil and heat it to smoking hot, then lower down the flame and keep it in ‘sim’ until the mysorepak is done. The key is that it should be hot, not warm.Image
Heat 3 tbsp of oil (you can take some from ghee+oil mix) and add it to the besan. The oil has to be hot enough so that you hear a sizzle and you can also see it bubbling when you add to the besan. Do not skip this step, this takes the raw smell out of besan.Image
Mix the oil well with the besan, try to break the lumps with spoon, but do not worry much about them. I always add it like this, the lumps smooth out in the syrup anyways.Image
Grease the plate you will be pouring the mysorepak in at the end.Image
I have one heavy bottomed pot to make the mysorepak and the ghee+oil pot in the nearby burner (keep it hot)Image
Add the sugar and water to the pot to make the syrup.Image
Stir until sugar completely dissolves.¬†The consistency we are looking for is 1-string. But you don’t have to check the string. when you see the sugar boiling like this, it is 1-string consistency.Image
Add the besan to the syrup. You will see lumps now…but do not worry about that.keep stirring for a couple of minute before you start to add ghee.Image
Pour a big spoon of hot ghee+oil to the mix. Ofcourse, you have to hear the sizzle and you will see the hot ghee cooking the top layer instantly.Image
Mix well until the ghee is absorbed. Keep adding ghee and keep stirring.Image
The mixture will take in all the ghee you are adding. Notice the smooth texture…Image
Notice how the texture is becoming flaky, its the beginning of the end .Image
Slowly the ghee+oil will start oozing out of the mixture. Image
The mixture will not stick to the bottom anymore.Image
When it rolls easily into one big lump you know its done…if you leave it on heat any longer, it will start to brown/burn.Image
Quickly transfer the mysorepak to the greased plate….the mysorepak will continue to cook.
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Smooth the top without pressing too hard, the top layer will look rough….that’s how mysorepak is.Image
Mark lines when it is still warm. But you can wait for it cool down before you cut them into pieces.Image
The cooking time, from making the syrup to pouring the finished mysorepak to the greased plate won’t be more than 10 – 12 mins. But those 10 mins definitely need your undivided attention.¬† Good luck !Image

Chicken and Black Beans Fajitas


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Boneless chicken stripsImage

Marinate with : Turmeric powder, Chilli powder, dark soy, 1/2 tsp of gingergarlic paste, lemon juice, yogurt and salt. Image
Let it sit for at least 30 mins, more the better. Lay the strips down on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees .Image
For the black beans :¬†minced ginger,¬†minced garlic,¬†minced green chillies,¬†lime and¬†minced herbs (I have mint here).¬†The powder I have in the middle is taco seasoning. If you do not have it, you can mix chilli powder, garlic powder, cocoa and brown sugar. If you don’t want to take that route, you can use channa masala too.Image
Saute the ginger, garlic, mint and chillies. Image
Add the black beans, seasoning, sprinkle some water and cook for a couple of mins. Do not make it dry.Image
Thinly sliced onions
red and yellow peppers
green apples(You can use any vegetable as long as they are light and crunchy, like cucumbers and zucchini)Image

Saute the onions and when they turn light brown, saute the peppers.Image
Add the green apples and add salt and pepper.Image
Warm the tortillas.Image
Now you just have to put everything together. You can serve with condiments like guacamole, sour cream or salsa. But just this is good enough, as you get the sweet and tangy from the peppers and green apples and all those spices from the chicken and beans.Image
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Buffalo Chicken Dogs


My kids are always fascinated by Hot dogs. But they are not allowed to eat red meat , so I make simple chicken Kebabs and make them over as hot dogs. Image
Minced/Ground chickenImage
Tomatoes, onions, green chillies and mint chopped.Image
Heat 2 tsp of oil and sauté the green chilles, mint and onions. Also add a tsp of ginger garlic paste.Image
Add the tomatoes. When the tomatoes soften, add turmeric powder, chilli powder, garam masala and salt.Image
Add the onion-tomato mixture , 1 tbsp. of besan (chick peas flour/gram flour) and an egg and mix well. Add breadcrumbs if the mixture is too loose.Image
Now it is easy to shape the kebabs. Rubbing oil on your palms while rolling helps.Image
Lay the kebabs on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees F for 15 minutes and turn them over and bake for another 15 minutes.Image
Toss the kebabs with some buffalo sauce (just like you toss the wings). You can use regular hot sauce, teriyaki sauce or even coriander/mint chutneys , according to your flavor preference.Image
Serve in toasted hot dog buns with ketchup / mustard or pickled onions and cheese. Have it your way !

Rum Raisin Pumpkin Cake


This is a fusion of pumpkin bread and the Indian Christmas cake otherwise called as plum cake.Image
 
Flour – 3.5 cups
Sugar – 3 cups
Cooking oil – 1 cup
water – 2/3 cup
Eggs – 4
pumpkin – 8 oz can
Baking soda – 2 tsp
Baking powder – 1 tsp
Salt – 2tsp
pumpkin pie spice mix – 4 tsp

If you do not have pumpkin pie spice mix, you can use :

cinnamon – 1 tsp
clove – 1 tsp
nutmeg – 1 tsp
allspice – 1 tspImage

 
For the rum raisin part :

Take 1 cup of raisins. You can also add other dried fruits or dates.Image

 
Coat the raisins with flour.Image
 
Soak the raisins in 1/2 cup of rum and leave it overnight. You can use up to 1 cup of rum.Image
 
Quick roast some walnuts in microwave and chop them.Image
 
Sift the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice mix and salt) together.Image
 
Blend the oil and sugar.Image
 
Beat in one egg at a time.Image
 
After blending in all four eggs, add the pumpkin.Image
 
Add the combined flour in three batches alternating with water.Image
 
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Stir in the rum-soaked raisins and chopped walnuts.Image
 
Grease and dust a cake pan. You can also use loaf pans.Pour the cake mix into the pan and bake at 350 degrees. It took little over an hour to get done. If you are using loaf pans, it will take less time.Image
 
Serve with a scoop of ice cream or whipped cream or just the cake on its own.
(You can use mashed bananas instead of pumpkin, but the banana cakes usually come out denser than the pumpkin cakes.)Image