Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Fruit Salad Bowls

 
 I found this cute idea of serving fruit salad in waffle bowls dipped in chocolate in the Costco magazine. I did not follow any recipe as such, but here's how I made it:
 
Melt Wilton's candy melt chocolate (I used milk chocolate) in a microwave safe bowl at 20 to 30 second intervals for about a minute, stirring in between. Dip the edges of waffle bowls in the melted chocolate to roughly cover all sides. Lay on wax/parchment paper to dry for 5 to 10 mins.
  
 

Fill with fruit salad of your choice. I have used apples, bananas, blueberries and strawberries, mixed with flavored yogurt and slivered almonds.


Saturday, July 12, 2014

Tofu Bhurji



Tofu Bhurji is a combination of crumbled tofu, onions and peppers with desi spices and a touch of soy sauce. It is a good alternative to paneer bhurji and works even for those who usually turn up their noses at the mention of tofu.

Here's how I make it:

Heat 2 tsp oil in a wide non-stick pan. Drain  a pack of firm tofu well, crumble with fork and add to the pan. Saute on medium high heat, stirring often for 5 to 10 minutes until the tofu dries and starts to brown a bit. Reduce heat to medium and add about 1/2 cup chopped onion and 1 clove garlic (minced). Continue to saute until onion starts softening. Then add another 1/2 cup to 1 cup chopped bell peppers (I like to use combination of colors - green, red, orange and yellow). Saute another 5 mins. Add 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes and 1 tbsp. nutritional yeast. Add seasoning - 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp pav bhaji masala, 1 tsp cumin-coriander pwd, 1/4 tsp red chilli pwd, 1/4 tsp turmeric pwd. Adjust seasonings to taste. Lastly add 1 tbsp. soy sauce. Mix well, cover and cook for 10 minutes stirring occasionally.

Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve warm with toast for a hearty breakfast/brunch. We also like it with roti for lunch or dinner.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Gajar chi bhaji



Making dry subji with gram flour (called "peeth perlelya bhajya" in Marathi) is very common and in my humble opinion enhances flavor since well toasted gram flour makes the subji very tasty (khamang). I have blogged about Methi subji made with gram flour and Bell Peppers with gram flour. This Gajar subji with gram flour is a recent favorite.

Here's how I make it:

1 cup grated carrots
Tempering - 2 tsp oil, 1 tsp mustard seeds, 1/2 tsp cumin seeds, pinch of asafetida, 1/2 tsp turmeric pwd, 1 clove garlic (minced)
Salt and red chilli pwd to taste
1 tsp cumin-coriander pwd
1/3 cup gram flour

Make tempering by adding mustard seeds to hot oil, when they stop spluttering add other ingredients. Stir for a minute, then add the grated carrots, gram flour, salt, red chilli pwd and cumin-coriander pwd. Mix gently. Add another tsp of oil around edges. Cover and cook on medium low heat for 10 mins, stirring in between.

Serve with poli/roti.


Friday, July 4, 2014

Mini Patriotic Pies

 

I found this in Costco's food magazine that came in the mail a while back. Thought they were really cute, so decided to make them today.

I used mini fillo shells. These are baked and ready to serve, I found them in the refrigerated aisle of the grocery store.

I prepped Jello vanilla pudding per packet instructions (used only half the pack). Spooned it into the shells, then topped with blueberries and strawberries.

Enjoy immediately.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Pesto Pizza on Naan Base

Here's another quick, kid-friendly snack/meal that's a hit with my daughter & her friends.
 
 
 
I got these cute mini-naan pack from Costco. First I toast the naans in the pop up toaster until lightly browned.
 

Then I slather a layer of pesto. I use ready made basil pesto from Costco. Add chopped onions, tomatoes, peppers. Other veggies of your choice can also be used. Top it all with shredded mozzarella cheese.

Place on baking sheet and pop in the oven to broil for upto 5 mins or until cheese melts and slightly bubbles.
 

Cool for a few minutes, cut into wedges and serve immediately. Be sure to make a big batch as these will be gone in minutes.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Toast sandwich

Here is one of Neerja's favorite snack/meal items - Toast Sandwich. Now that summer vacation has started and she's at home, the hunger pangs strike at regular intervals. So this is a good item to put together in a jiffy.
 
For making the sandwich filling - mix together finely chopped onions, tomatoes, bell peppers, cilantro, grated paneer (or any other kind of cheese), salt, pepper and pinch of ajwain.
 
 
Don't let the filling sit for long, sandwich between 2 slices of bread, with some butter spread on the outside.
 
 

Toast in sandwich toaster until nicely browned.



Serve immediately with ketchup. Or make it a meal with some soup on the side.


Monday, June 23, 2014

Easy Lunch Box Ideas

I cannot believe I haven't posted anything since the beginning of this year. I guess I got so caught up in the daily routine - office, kid's school, home work, extra curricular activities, volunteering etc. that this blog got put on the back burner. Now that summer vacation is here, I feel so relaxed, like a load has lifted off.
 
Here are couple of quick and easy lunches that featured weekly in my kid's lunch box when school was on.
 
Pesto Cucumber Sandwich
 
 
 
Take 2 slices of bread. Butter one slice on one side and generously apply pesto on a side of the other slice. I use Costco's Basil Pesto. Make few thin slices of cucumber, pat dry on a paper towel. Sandwich between the 2 slices of bread. That's it. Ready in 2 minutes flat.
 
 
I have also taken this to picnics and parties (my daughter's 5th grade graduation party at school) and it carries well and is appreciated by all.
 
Mini Paneer & Peppers Skewers
 

Cube paneer pieces and cut green and red bell peppers into squares. Sprinkle some salt, cumin pwd, coriander pwd and a tsp of oil over the paneer and peppers. Mix gently. Let sit for 5 mins.



Then roast in a non-stick pan on medium high heat for 3 to 5 mins until paneer cubes are lightly browned and peppers are slightly cooked but still firm. Take off heat and sprinkle some chaat masala.


Let cool for 5 mins, then thread on to toothpicks. Pack in lunchbox or serve immediately. If making for young kids probably better to avoid the toothpicks altogether.


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