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Monday, June 12, 2017

Roasted Tomato Salsa | How to Make Roasted Tomato Salsa From Scratch


This is my last day of Blogging Marathon under the theme 'Explore Latin American Cuisine' and today I am going to share another Mexican dip that I made to go with my Homemade Tortilla Chips. I make this dip every time, I make anything Mexican for dinner.

It is very easy to make it and the best thing is that it can be made with ingredients readily available in our kitchen. If you like you salsa a bit chunky, chopping roasted tomatoes will do. But, if you like it little saucy, puree half of the tomatoes and chop the rest. I like it both ways but, for this post I have made a chunky salsa.

Roasted Tomato Salsa

Ingredients:
2 large ripe red tomatoes
1 small onion, finely chopped
Handful of coriander leaves, finely chopped
1-2 green chilies, minced
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp tomato ketchup
1 tsp sugar
Salt and pepper to taste

Process:


1. Insert a metal skewer into the tomato and roast it on open flame over gas stove till the skin turns blackish and cracks in places. Let it cool a bit and peel the charred skin. Chop the roasted tomato finely.

2. In a bowl add all the ingredients and mix it will. Cover it will a cling film and store in refrigerator. Salsa always tastes better if it is prepared a few hours in advance before serving time.

3. Serve it chilled with tortilla chips or with any other Mexican delicacies.


Thank you for stopping by! Cheers!

BMLogo

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM#77

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Guacamole | How to make Guacamole From Scratch


I first tasted avocados when I was living in Dublin. To tell you the truth, I found it a little too bland for my taste to eat it raw. A few pieces here and there in a salad is fine, but not more than that. But, avocados in the form of this dip is delicious. I can have spoonfuls of it and yet want more.

When you are making tortilla chips, making this dip is a must. In India, avocados comes under the exotic variety of fruits and it comes pricey. So, whenever I buy it, I make sure that I make the best use of it.

More often than not, I find they they are raw when I buy them. so, I keep them wrapped in paper for 2-3 days, till they are ripe enough to be used.

Here is how I make guacamole from scratch - it is an easy, no-cook dip and can be whipped up instantly.

Guacamole

Ingredients:
1 ripe avocado
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 small tomato, deseeded and finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
Handful of coriander leaves, finely chopped
1 green chili, finely minced
Salt to taste
Juice of 1 lemon, about 3 to 4 tbsp (adjust to taste)

Process:

1.       Keep all ingredients chopped and minced before setting out to scoop the flesh of avocado as it has a tendency to get brown.
2.       Slit the avocado from the middle and divide into two parts. Remove the stone and using a spoon scoop out the flesh.
3.       Collect the flesh in a medium bowl and using a fork mash it nicely. Add all the listed ingredients and mix it all together. Adjust salt to taste. Cover the bowl tightly with a cling film until serving time.

4.       Serve chilled with tortilla chips. Enjoy!

BMLogo

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM#77

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Homemade Tortilla Chips Made From Scratch | How to Make Tortilla Chips at Home





Past few weeks had been quite busy for me. That is the reason I could not spend any time on this space for more than 2 weeks now.

First DH fell ill and then it was baby M's turn. When both got well, we had to travel for a marriage ceremony. Travelling with a toddler is so exhausting - there are so many little things to pack for every possible situation. After coming back - unpacking, laundry and getting the house in order! Uff.. the list goes on! To top that my regular maids have left and I feel like I am stranded in the middle of no where. You get my point right! But, then that's life. Nothing always go as planned.

Enough of my rants for today, so, lets talk about food now.

Last month I decided to join Srivalli's Blogging Marathon event for the month of June, so that I could be more regular in blogging here. For my first week, I chose the theme - Latin American Cuisine and spent quite some time exploring vegetarian options for various countries that come under the gamut of Latin America. But, in the end, due to time crunch, I decided to stick to some dishes that I have already tasted many times and I could re-create them at home, thus doing some justice to its taste.

Latin America comprises of 19 sovereign states and many other territories and dependencies. Mexico is one of the Latin American countries. So, I chose to post a recipe for tortilla chips - one of the very popular snack to munch on from Mexico.

Today I am sharing a simple recipe for Homemade Tortilla Chips made from scratch using maize flour. This recipe was shared to me by my sister in law. It is her mom's recipe. The only thing I changed was I used whole wheat flour instead of maida as needed in the recipe. When I searched about homemade tortilla chips online, most of the blogs just used ready made corn tortillas to make them. Since, corn tortillas are not readily available in India, anyone wanting to make tortilla chips at home can try this method of using maize flour - our humble makki ka aata. Since, maize flour is gluten free, we have to add wheat flour or maida to the dough, so that it helps in binding.

Without much ado, let's check the recipe now.


Ingredient:

1 cup maize flour/ makki ka aata
½ cup whole wheat flour/aata
2 tbsp oil
Lukewarm water for making dough
Oil to deep fry
½ tsp salt

Process:

1. In a bowl take maize flour, whole wheat flour, salt and oil and mix well. Using the lukewarm water make stiff but smooth dough.

2. Cover the dough and set it aside for 15 minutes

3. Divide the dough into 7-8 golf size balls. Using some whole wheat flour roll the balls one at a time into round circles of 5 to 6 inches diameter. Slice them into 6 triangle pieces just like we slice pizza. Pierce the pieces with fork.

4. Take the pieces off gently and place on a clean plate. Repeat the process with rest of the dough balls. When done, heat oil for deep frying.

5. Deep fry them in batches till they are light brown.

Notes:

You need to be extra careful while rolling the dough. If you roll it too thin it might break. Use flour for dusting as and when needed.


Monday, May 22, 2017

Virgin Orange Mojito | How to Make Virgin Orange Mojito


Virgin Orange Mojito

Both I and DH love oranges. When these fruits are in season, having fresh orange juice almost every day is a norm. But, one fine day, after we bid adieu to the Indian Nagpur Oranges, DH spotted some imported variety in the supermarket and bought a bagful home. While they looked inviting, one sip of its juice made me cringe – they turned out to be very-very sour. So, I was left with no option but to make a mock-tail out of it.

We all know the classic mojito in its virgin form is made of mint, lemon, little sugar and aerated water. Often sprite and ginger ale is also used. I have seen many flavoured mojito drinks doing rounds on the internet and so, I decided to use those sour oranges in making virgin orange mojito. I like to add a bit of ginger juice in my mojitos – it adds a depth to the overall flavour.

Oranges are out of season now. But, you can use packaged orange juice if you fancy to try this out.

Ingredients:
¼ cup fresh mint leaves
2 cups orange juice (I used freshly squeezed orange juice)
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp simple sugar syrup (sugar syrup prepared by mixing and boiling equal quantity of sugar and water till the sugar is dissolved)
1 tsp fresh ginger juice
Sprite as needed
Ice cubes as needed
Orange slices, lemon slices and fresh mint leaves for garnishing

Process:

In a jar add fresh mint leaves, sugar syrup and muddle it with a spoon. Add lemon juice, followed by orange juice and ginger juice. Stir it nicely.

In two tall glasses, add lots of ice cubes and pour the prepared concoction equally. Top it up with chilled sprite. Garnish with orange slice, lemon slice and a mint sprig. Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Paan Ice Cream | How to Make Paan Flavoured Ice Cream at Home



When it comes to cooking, the greatest satisfaction for me comes when I am able to create a flavour in a particular dish exactly the way I wanted. So, when I tasted my paan (betel leaves) flavoured ice cream, I did my little happy dance.

"Meetha Paan" is one of those after-food treats I don't mind indulging in, whenever I get a chance. I remember when I was in my early teens back in my hometown, savouring on a meetha paan was a rare indulgence. But, whenever I had the chance, my special instructions to the 'paanwala bhaiya' were - extra gulkand and no supari (betel nut). The paan vendor had a tiny shop with a number of people flocking in at any point of time. Fresh paan leaves would be kept under a wet red muslin cloth, and there would be an assortment of fillings in various jars kept in a particular order to be folded inside the paan leaf, The vendor would take a fresh paan leaf, slather little 'kattha' and would ask how would you like it filled. A request for extra gulkand would often raise his eyebrow. But, in the end everyone could have a customized meetha pan to savour on.

A meetha pan is a perfect palate cleanser for me - I always put the whole of it in my mouth and my jaws are in for some extra work. Juice from the betel leaves, gulkand, fennel seeds and the various filling creates an explosion of flavours which any Indian paan loving human will vouch for. Here in Pune, we do get good meetha paan, but most of the times they are already prepared and kept in an cool ice box. When you buy one, the vendors typically dip it in rose syrup and lightly coat in desiccated coconut and serve it to you.

Paan Ice-Cream

Sometimes back when I spotted paan ice cream at a very popular ice cream joint in the city, I ordered one. But, it didn't live up to my expectations - it had less flavour of paan and more of mint flavoured mouth freshener. So, I decided to try to make it at home. After reading various recipes online, I realized this ice-cream is very much customizable. You can flavour with a blend of things - just like the way you would want to flavour your customized meetha paan.

I stuck with my fresh cream and condensed milk combination for this ice-cream. Do read the notes for some extra tips.

Ingredients:


250 ml fresh cream
200 g condensed milk
200 ml full fat milk
10 medium size maghai paan leaves, divided.
1/4 cup gulkand
1 tbsp green cardamom
3 tbsp fennel seeds
1 tbsp mithi supari (optional, I used it to impart a note of mint flavour in the ice cream. Mithi supari is a mint flavoured sweetened betel nut based mouth freshener easily available in India)

Process:

1. In a small blender jar, add 5 paan leaves, gulkand, green cardamom, fennel seeds and mithi supari. Blend it to a paste using as little water as possible. Using a strainer, strain it to get the extract.
2. In a large blender jar, add the extract, rest of the 5 paan and cream. Blend till smooth. The paan leaves should be finely blended.
3. Add the milk and condensed milk to the mixture in the blender and blend again till smooth.
4. Pour into a freezer safe container and freeze for 2 hours.
5. Take out the half set ice-cream and tip it into the blender jar and blend it till smooth. Freeze it again till frozen. It will take anywhere between 4 to 6 hours.
6. Take it out 5 minutes before serving. Serve scoops of it chilled. You can relish it with or without topping.


Notes:

1. I like my paan ice cream to be smooth. So, I strained the mixture of  paan leaves, gulkand, green cardamom, fennel seeds and mithi supari to get an extract. If you like coarse bits of it in your ice-cream, you may skip the step of straining.
2. For topping you can use, rose syrup, tutti fruity or even tiny bit of gulkand.
3. Churning it before the final freezing if ice-cream helps to reduce ice crystals in the ice-cream. So, don't skip the step. You may churn it 2-3 times if you like.
4. Another way of making this ice-cream is - get 3-4 meetha pan from the vendor and churn it with milk, cream and condensed milk in the quantity mentioned in the recipe.

Thank you for stopping by! Cheers!
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