Bombay Aloo

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“What is that?”,were my thoughts when I saw it on the menu in the UK. In 21 years that I spent growing up in Mumbai (formerly known as Bombay), I never came across a dish named so. But when I ate it, I knew instantly what it was!

Bombay Aloo will mean different things to different people and just like any curry, every family will have their own version.

Here is my dad’s version. Bombay Aloo served in England tastes closest to what my dad used to make.

Serves 2 – 3

Ingredients:

5 diced potatoes

1 1/2 tsp turmeric

2 1/2 tsp chilli powder

1 tsp mustard seeds

2 tbsp oil

Salt and Sugar to taste

Coriander to garnish

Method:

Boil the potatoes. I used the pressure cooker. Two whistles and then I let it rest.

In a pan, heat the oil. Add the mustard seeds. Once they pop, add the drained potatoes. Add all the spices and gently fry until everything is mixed. Don’t mix too much, you risk mushing up the potatoes. Cook until potatoes turn slightly golden and spices loose its raw smell. Garnish with chopped coriander. Serve hot!

Beetroot & Chickpeas Burgers

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This recipe is so easy and can be made in less than 2 hours. A good way to get those veggies into your kids. The beetroot adds a nice raw pink colour to it which we loved. We were surprised by the combination of beetroot with chickpeas. Flavours were subtle but very satisfying.

Servings: 8 to 10 patties

Ingredients:

3 cans of chickpeas

2 big beetroots, cooked & grated (I used precooked from the shop, a pack of 6 to 7 tiny beetroots)

1 finely chopped red onion

3 – 4 cloves of garlic

Handful of chopped coriander

4 – 5 tbsp quick oats

1 tbsp cornflour

1/2 tbsp of grammar flour

2 tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)

2 tsp of chia seeds (optional)

100 grams of walnuts, coarsely ground

1 tbsp of cumin powder

1 tbsp of smoked paprika

Salt to taste

3 tbsp oil to cook

Method:

Take a can of chickpeas and blend it with its water. It will be nearly as smooth as hummus, pour it in a mixing bowl. Drain other two cans and put it in with the ground chickpeas. Now mush up the chickpeas with a potato masher.

Add all the other ingredients and mix well. I would get in with your hands. If it is too wet, add more oats or a sprinkle of cornflour should do the trick.

Once the mixture is ready, form your patties and set them aside in the fridge to set.

In the meantime, chop up all the other fillings you would like to put in your burger: tomatoes, red onions, gherkins, cheese etc.

After about 30 minutes of chilling. I shallow fried the patties until golden brown on both sides and then put them in a preheated oven on gas mark 5 for 20 mins or so.

Check after 15 minutes and cook accordingly. Voila!

Serve with some homemade chips and cold glass of lager! Perfect way to welcome spring.

 

 

 

 

Kohlrabi And Broccoli Stir-Fry

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So last week, Nethergong Nurseries sent me this amazing summer vegetable called Kohlrabi. It is one of those vegetables that you won’t find in the supermarkets easily and so if you are a supermarket junkie (which I was until I found the veggie box), you wouldn’t know what to do with this amazing vegetable.

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Kohlrabi is great either cooked in curries or stir-fry or raw in salads or sandwiches. It has a texture of radish, fresh, juicy and crunchy. Both the stem and the bulb is edible and they have a sweet taste with some kick like that of a radish to it.

Because Kohlrabi is similar to cabbage and broccoli, I decided to toss them together in a healthy stir-fry and served it with some white rice and pan fried salmon fillets. Here is the recipe:

Ingredients:

1 whole broccoli, cut into florets

1 whole kohlrabi, sliced

2-3 carrots, sliced

1 large onion, sliced

4-5 cloves of garlic, chopped

2 inches of ginger, julienne

2-3 tsp soy sauce

1tsp honey

handful of chopped spring onions

salt to taste

sprinkle of chilli flakes

2tbsp oil

Method:

Heat oil in the pan. Saute garlic, ginger and onion until translucent. Add broccoli and kohlrabi along with carrots. Fry them for 5 minutes and then add soy sauce, salt, honey & chilli flakes. Cook on slow flame until the vegetables are tender. Do not overcook. Make sure the vegetables have a bite to it. Last but not the least sprinkle some spring onions.

Garnish with some sesame seeds. Voila! Serve hot.

Malaysian Laksa Soup

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I am always intrigued by Malaysian cuisine, as it has evolved from various cultures over the years. It combines the spices from India, China and Thailand. It is so versatile yet unique in it’s own way. A taste close to home yet not. Here is one of the easiest and house special Laksa soup. It is very warming and comforting bowl of goodness on a cold evening. You can use chicken, seafood, fried tofu or all of them in this soup but I am going with seafood and vegetables.

Ingredients:

For the Laksa Paste:

1 chopped onion

5 -6 cloves of garlic

a big chunk of ginger or galangal

2 big tbsp of turmeric

3 to 4 dried (or fresh) red chillies (add less if you like)

2 sticks of lemongrass

1tsp shrimp paste (optional but preferable)

For the Soup:

Handful of cauliflower florets

Handful of chopped spring greens

Handful of beansprouts

1 fillet of cod

1 tin coconut milk

2 tbsp oil

1 lime

1/2 tsp sugar

2 to 3 tsp of fish sauce (or salt to taste)

Few drops of soy sauce (optional)

Method:

Blitz the ingredients together with water to form a nice yellowish paste. Add more turmeric if it isn’t bright yellow.

In a pan, heat the oil. Add the paste and cook it thoroughly for 5 minutes or until the oil separates. Then add cauliflower and water. Cook until the cauliflower is al dente and then throw in the greens and bean sprouts along with the fish. Add all the seasonings (fish sauce, sugar, lime juice and soy sauce). Once the fish is cooked, remove the fish separately. Last step is to add the coconut milk and let it simmer for just a few minutes. Make sure the vegetables are not overcooked.

Serve hot on a bed of rice noodles or jasmine rice. Garnish with fresh coriander.

Tip: If using shrimp paste, please remember to taste as you cook. Shrimp paste is very salty so be careful with the rest of the seasoning.

 

 

Halloumi with Apples and Mixed Salad Leaves

This is a very simple yet tasty and light salad, perfect for days when you aren’t very hungry but wouldn’t mind eating something before going to bed. A wholesome healthy meal!

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Ingredients:

A bag of Mixed Salad Leaves

Handful of Cherry Tomatoes (cut into half)

1 Packet of Halloumi (we cut them into 4 parts for two of us)

1 Apple

Sprinkling of flour

Butter for frying

Dressing:

Olive oil

A sprinkling of Oregano

Balsamic Vinegar

Salt

Sugar

Mustard ( any you prefer)

Lime/lemon juice (optional)

Method:

For the salad, just chop the apples into long thin stripes or julienne as they call it. Toss in the a bowl with mixed salad leaves & tomatoes. Set aside.

Now, prepare the ingredients for the dressing. For convenience, remember the measurement of 2:1 for olive oil and balsamic vinegar respectively. Everything else, add a little bit at a time. Taste and add more until it is perfect. Set it aside.

Now for the halloumi, sprinkle and tap some flour on each side of halloumi and fry it in butter on a hot pan. Let it brown for a minute or two and turn over. Alternatively, you can grill the cheese if you have a grill. I would suggest putting a tinned foil at the bottom of the grill, just incase the cheese sticks at the bottom.

Toss the dressing in with the salad and plate it out with the crispy savoury halloumi on top. Enjoy with fresh glass of orange juice!!

P.S: Please try and use organic and fair trade products as much as possible. We can’t eradicate but can reduce negative environmental impacts on our plant in this lifetime.

Homemade Fishcakes with Pineapple and Rocket Salad

Knowing what goes into your meal is an important aspect of healthy eating. Homemade fishcakes are easy to make and taste way better than frozen ones or ready made ones from the shops. Making them at home also means you know exactly what is going into your fishcakes and you can quality control the ingredients whilst maintaining a budget.

I love making fishcakes at home, because it helps me pick sustainable fishes freshly caught by our local fishmonger, add my preferred flavours, control the seasoning and avoid all the junk that goes into the ready made fishcakes from the supermarket.

My fishcake recipe can be made with any kind of fish you can get hold of or add a bit of tofu/paneer/soy to make a vegetarian version. Add extra breadcrumbs instead of eggs to make it all vegan friendly. Play around with the recipe and enjoy!

Fishcakes:

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Ingredients:

2 Coley/Cod/Mackerel/Tuna fillet (cooked, simply boil them in water)

1 part Potato and 1 part Swede (cooked and mashed)

1 Cup Spring Onions (Chopped)

Handful of Coriander (Chopped)

1 Egg

1/2 Cup of Breadcrumbs (or oat crumbs)

1 tbsp Rice Flour

Salt and Pepper

Oil

Method:

Mix all the ingredients together (except oil) and carefully shape them into cakes. Let them sit in the fridge for about an hour or so. Now, heat oil in a pan and then shallow fry the fish cakes until nice and brown. Turn the heat down and let it cook for another 5 minutes. Alternatively, you could pop the fishcakes into a pre-heated oven on gas mark 5, for 10 to 15 minutes to ensure that it is cooked through and warm right through the centre. Leave them on a kitchen paper to drain all the excess oil. Serve hot with a side of my Pineapple and Rocket salad (below) and some garlic bread!

Pineapple and Rocket Salad

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Ingredients:

Handful of Rockets

A few Spinach leaves

Handful of Basil and Coriander

Handful of Sprouts

1 cup chopped Pineapple

3 tbsp desiccated coconut (fresh coconut is better)

For the dressing:

5 to 6 cloves of Garlic

1 inch of Ginger

2 Chillies (or less)

Hoison Sauce

Honey

Lime juice

Method:

Chop all the greens, add pineapple, coconut and set aside. Finely chop the garlic, ginger and chillies and set aside. Now make a dressing with poison sauce, honey and lime juice and add chopped ginger, garlic, chillies into it. Mix well and use this dressing on the salad. Yum!!

 

I hope you’ll try this at home and let me know ow it was! 🙂

 

 

Homemade Strawberry Jam

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Without it our breakfast crumpets are a bland affair, without it cream teas are colourless and no victoria sponge is ever extra-ordinary without a big dollop of strawberry jam sandwiched between the sponges.

Summers are gone but one can always pack the sickly sweetness of strawberry nostalgia in a jar, spreading sweet dollops of happiness on your crumpets during cold winter mornings.

If you follow this recipe, I bet you will end up with strawberry jam that tastes simply mind-blowing!

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Ingredients:

1kg strawberries

500gm caster sugar

1 lemon juice

Method:

Clean and cut the strawberries into half. In a saucepan mix the strawberries with sugar and lemon juice. Squish the strawberries gently with a fork. Cook the mixture until the sugar melts and then simmer it for almost one and half hours or until it is thick enough. Have a taste and add sugar according to taste.

Prepare the jam jars before hand. There are different ways of sterilising them. You can either wash them and put them in the oven for 30 minutes on 130 degrees. I simply washed them thoroughly in hot water and soaked them in piping hot water for 15 minutes and let them dry.

Once the jam jars are ready, pour in the hot jam into the jars. If the jar is cold, make sure the jar is sitting in hot water because cold glass has a tendency to break when it comes in contact with hot jam. Leave half an inch space, do not over fill. Stir the jam gently with a knife to get rid of any air bubbles. Put the cap on gently and sterilise the jars with the lid in hot water for another 15 to 20 minutes. Then tighten the seal and leave it to set overnight.

Voila!! Your home-made jam is ready to squirl on top of your toast or crumpet!

Let me know if you like my recipe by leaving a comment below.