Archive for the ‘Snacks’ Category

Vegetarian French Toast?

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013

This is something that my mom used to make for us. It is very simple and though she made it one day with leftovers, because of the taste and the simplicity she often made it as a snack or breakfast after that.

Breaduthappam

Are you wondering what is so vegetarian in this french toast? This recipe does not use egg but uses dosa batter.

Ingredients:
Bread- one slice
Dosa batter- 1 ladle
Onion- well chopped about 3 tbsp
Finely chopped cilantro- 1 tsp
Finely chopped green chili- less than 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste
Oil- 1 tbsp

Method:

Cut the brown slices from the bread. Pour the dosa batter onto a plate. Add chopped onions(grated carrots if you like), cilantro, chopped chili and salt.

Lightly drip both sides of the bread in this batter. Eggs will be thin but dosa batter is thick, so do not coat it a lot, a light coating would do. If you make it thick, the batter will be undercooked along with the bread.

Heat a tava/non stick frying pan, add a drizzle of oil and place the bread in the pan. Let it cook on a slow flame, when one side turns brown, turn it over and cook the other side.

Serve it with tomato ketchup or cilantro-mint chutney.

You can use either toasted bread or plain bread. I use only white bread as sometimes whole wheat bread does not taste good with this.

You can even pack it for lunch as the bread will be moist and dosa also will not get dry!

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Golas in Palak Gravy!

Monday, May 21st, 2012

I am sick of saying Spinach is good for health to my son. And also to the dad who gives a weird look when I make anything with spinach. Ofcourse one can make the tempting palak paneer, spinach dal, kootu, keerai sambar, keerai masiyal and even aloo palak and spinach cutlets, what else can I do with spinach? One fine day I made this recipe just to see how it tastes and what do you know, we have two dishes now, a gravy and a snack. Yipee!! This is what frustration can lead to, then it was one happy ending :)

Ingredients: Makes about 10 Golas.

For the dhal golas :

Chana (garbanzo beans) – 1 cup soaked for 6 hrs and cooked till just tender or canned beans
Rajma – 2 teaspoons – soaked for 6 hrs and cooked till just tender or canned beans
Ginger – 1/4″ piece
Garlic – 2 cloves
Green chillies – 1/2 to one chile depending on your spice preference
Onion – 1, chopped fine
Coriander leaves – 1 handful chopped fine
Salt to taste

For the gravy:

2 cup tightly packed spinach leaves
Tomatoes – 1 cup finely chopped
Onions- 1/4 cup, finely chopped
Garam Masala powder- 3/4 tsp
Salt to taste

For tempering:
Light olive oil- 1 tsp
Cumin seeds- 1/4 tsp

Method:

If you are using canned beans, drain it thoroughly. If you are using soaked and cooked beans also drain off the water. Blend the beans with garlic & ginger,cilantro, green chillies salt, without adding water to a coarse paste. Make lemon sized balls and fry in a aapa karai till golden brown. Or make like patties and shallow fry in a tava/frying pan. If you add water while blending you will not be able to shape it. Drain the golas on a tissue.

Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds. When they splutter add the onions and fry till translucent. Add salt. Add the tomatoes and cook till they are mashed and blends with onions like a gravy. Add the spinach and garam masala powder. Cover and let the spinach leaves cook through. Let it cool and blend onion-tomato-spinach mix to a puree. Return the puree to the pan, add the dhal golas and cook for 4-5 mins. Switch off. Serve hot with rotis, pooris or parathas. If you like you can even add cream to the gravy before serving!


The best part is that you can make the golas/tikkis and serve it as a snack too. If you like you can even add grated paneer/cheese to the golas.

Sending this Dal golas in palak gravy to MLLA-47 guest hosted by Priya, an event started by Susan.

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Coconut Macaroons

Thursday, February 16th, 2012

Baking cookies or bread just makes the house smell so good in the evenings and it makes N ask the question,”Whats cooking”? as he comes home. This recipe is one of my favorites as it reminds me of the coconut biscuits sold at bakeries in India.N likes the nei biscuit(butter biscuit) and this one and the coconut-cherry filled buns are my all time favorites. My mom used to buy me these goodies on the way back home from school and when I think back of those times it just reminds of the people I love.

There are many recipes to make a macaroon- one with condensed milk and one with sugar. I like the version with sugar and I use Alton Brown’s recipe from Food Network to make these cookies. I use the dry powdered coconut sold at Indian stores for this recipe as it literally melts in the mouth when you bite into the cookie. You can also use sweetened coconut flakes but it gives a chunky feeling and kind of an oily feeling so I stick to the powdered coconut/dry coconut flakes.

You have to be very careful when you bake these macaroons- if the sugar is too much then the cookie is like a candy, if you add more coconut then it tastes dry and chunky. Adding too many egg whites makes the batter runny and you cant bake at all!

Ingredients: (I can make about 20-22 cookies with this measurement)
4 large egg whites (or about 3/4 cup egg whites if you are using break free egg products)
Salt- a pinch
Sugar- 1/2 cup
1 (8-ounce) package sweetened shredded coconut

Method:

Preheat oven to 350 F. Toast the coconut till it is light golden brown in color(whether you use powdered or sweetened toast it for 1-2 minutes).

Beat the egg whites in a stand mixer/hand mixer for about 5-7 minutes so that the egg whites form a foam and then becomes stiff like a peak when you remove the mixer. Set aside.

Slowly add the sugar and coconut and fold in the mixture without mixing it too much as it will break the fluffiness of the batter.

Using a spoon, drop a tablespoon quantity of the cookie batter into the cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350 F for 15-20 minutes till the top is golden brown.

Let it cool down. Store the cookies in an airtight container. Serve with tea or coffee in the evenings.

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Spanakopita Baskets!

Thursday, November 17th, 2011

There are a couple of things that can instantly make you feel better- like a cup of tea with a hot savory snack.The best part in growing up in a big family,surrounded by near and dear ones is, whenever you cook, you atleast make enough to feed 10 people. I often think of the times when the kitchen is full of activity with friends stepping in and out and dishes being handed out from the kitchen by my mom and aunts during weekends and evenings.

With little R’s arrival,it is not only our friends, but also our neighbors kids dropping in to see him and to play with him. This gives me a good excuse to bake cookies, muffins,rolls,puffs and savory snacks. Baked savory snacks carry many similarities and you can make the same snack in so many different ways. Take for example,Spanakopita – I can relate it to the Indian version of Samosa in many ways. Both are street foods, very popular, the filling can be made according to what you have in the pantry and no one can resisit eating just one.

Like this version I made last week, which is not a traditional one, but it has flavors of both countries,India that I know and Greece, the origin of this dish.I believe in not learning a recipe, but a technique that you can use in many recipes depending on the occasion and not sticking to the same method.

Ingredients:
(Makes 6 baskets and 2 rolls)

Potatoes- 2
Onions-1/2 cup
Baby Spinach- Tightly packed leaves- 2 cups
Canned Chickpeas-4 tbsp
Frozen Peas-4 tbsp
Green Chilies-2
Cottage Cheese or Feta Cheese- 3 tbsp
Paprika- 1/2 tsp
Salt- 1/2 tsp
Light olive oil- 1 tbsp
Dough Sheet/Puff Pastry/Phyllo sheets-(I used one full dough sheet)

Method:

Boil and peel the skin of potatoes. Chop and wash the spinach leaves. Heat oil in a pan, add chopped onions,salt and green chilies, stir fry till onions are about to turn translucent, now add boiled potatoes, spinach, paprika, frozen peas and chickpeas. Stir fry well to mix and keep mashing with the back of the ladle so that potatoes and spinach are well cooked as well as mashed.

Let the filling cool down to room temperature.Pre heat the oven to 375 F.

Lightly apply butter in the muffin pan.

Spread the dough sheet. Depending on how you want to serve, you can either make triangles, squares, baskets(muffins) or rolls. I made a roll, so that I could cut it and serve as finger food. I also made some like baskets in a muffin pan.

For muffins cut a 10 cm square of the dough sheet,press it inside the muffin pan,add 2 tbsp of filling, top it with some crumbled cottage cheese and bring together the edges of the sheet so that you can seal the sides and finish with a knot on top.I usually try to make some design on top by just rolling the sheet into a shape or by keeping a handle like basket.If you want to make a roll, spread some filling on to a 10 cm square sheet, sprinkle some cheese on top, roll it tightly and seal the edges by pressing it together.

Bake for 15 minutes till the outer layer is golden brown in color. Serve hot or at room temperature with any of your favorite dips. Tastes great with plain ketchup too.

The dip that I make for savory snack is to blend half a red chili(seeds removed), 1 tsp of dried raisins(about 6-7 raisins),1/4 tsp of tamarind paste, 2 seedless dates with 1/4 cup of water. Then depending on how thick or thin I need the dip, I simmer it as it is or with another 1/4 cup of water till it thickens(5-7 minutes). It is spicy,tangy,sweet and goes with all savory snacks. You can even add it to yogurt to make it a cool and refreshing dip.

As part of the Foodbuzz Featured Publisher program, I have been entered for the chance to win a trip to Greece courtesy of FAGE. You too can enter to win one of three trips to Greece by entering the FAGE Plain Extraordinary Greek Getaway here http://www.fageusa.com/community/fage-greek-getaway.

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