Carrot Salad

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This is another easy and simple salad. Carrots are a salad regular and I usually make it South Indian style. This recipe from the book, Diva Green, had a different flavour combination for the ubiquitous carrot. The mint, sesame seeds, honey and lemon juice make a beautiful team to enhance this simple salad to the next level.

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Serves 2-3

Recipe from Diva Green: a vegetarian cookbook by Ritu Dalmia

WHAT WE NEED

Carrots, medium                4

Sesame seeds                       1 tsp

Mint leaves                           8-10

Raisins                                   2 tbsp

Sesame oil                             4-5 tsp

Lemon juice                          2 tbsp

Honey                                     1 tsp

Salt & pepper
WHAT TO DO

  • Peel and cut the carrots into thin matchsticks
  • Cook it in boiling water for 4-5 minutes
  • Drain the water and set the carrots aside to cool
  • Dry roast the sesame seeds in a pan till golden
  • In a bowl, whisk together the sesame oil, lemon juice, honey, salt and pepper
  • Pour this dressing over the carrots
  • Add the mint leaves, raisins and half of the sesame seeds and mix well
  • Garnish with the remaining sesame seeds 
  • Enjoy!

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This is my entry for the Cooking from Cookbook Challenge hosted by Srivalli.

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Pantzarosalata / Beetroot Yogurt Salad

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One of my recent endeavours is to try and eat more salads. As a rule, I hate salads and I am always trying to avoid them. But as a food blogger, if I can’t make tasty salads then what is the point? So I wanted one salad recipe from Greece. As always, I was looking for something easy and that can be made with ingredients easily available at home. I came across this easy and gorgeous beetroot salad and I am sure this is going to be a regular feature at home now on.

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Serves 2-3

Recipe adapted from here

WHAT WE NEED

Beetroot, medium                      3

Greek yogurt                               300 gms

Walnuts                                        10-12

Garlic cloves                                 3

Olive oil                                         2 tbsp

Vinegar                                          1 tsp

Salt & pepper
WHAT TO DO

  • Boil the betteroots for 30-40 minutes till they are cooked
  • Peel the beetroots and cut them into small pieces and set aside
  • In a blender / mixer take the garlic cloves, walnuts, olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper
  • Add the yoghurt to the mixture and stir well to combine
  • Pour the dressing over the beetroot and mix well
  • Chill the salad in the refrigerator for a couple of hours
  • Enjoy!

NOTES

  1. Ensure that you use only Greek yogurt else the salad will turn watery.

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This is my post for the Blogging Marathon under the theme, Greek dishes.

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Bobota / Simple Cornbread

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The second dish for the Greek theme is a simple cornbread. While I am not a huge fan of sweet breads, this one has the magic word in it – ‘orange juice’. Anything with orange juice works wonders for me and I immediately picked this dish. It is a quick bread and so the time taken for prep is minimal and the result is a wonderful cornbread with a subtle orange flavour.

The recipe was for a 9″ pie pan but I halved it and I didn’t have a smaller pie pan. So I baked them in mini tart tins which were waiting quite a while to be inaugurated. So I got really cute little cornbreads which were so delectable.

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Makes 7-8 mini cornbreads

Recipe adapted from here

WHAT WE NEED

Cornmeal             1 cup

Baking powder   1/2 tsp heaped

Sugar                     2 tbsp

Orange juice        4 tbsp

Water                    4 tbsp

Olive oil                2 tbsp
WHAT TO DO

  • Preheat the oven to 175C
  • Mix the cornmeal, sugar and baking powder in a bowl
  • Mix the water, orange juice and olive oil in another bowl
  • Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well to form a batter
  • Pour into the mini tart tins till it is 3/4 full
  • Bake for 30 minutes or till the toothpick inserted comes out clean
  • Cool for 10 minutes
  • Serve warm or at room temperature 
  • Enjoy!

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This is my post for the Blogging Marathon under the theme, Greek dishes.

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Eliopsoma / Olive Breadsticks

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This week’s theme is Greek dishes and I have to make three dishes. But I was so spoilt for choice that picking only three was a tough job. But I couldn’t miss out on the breads and so I picked two breads and a salad for this week. The first is this delicious olive breadstick which is simple to bake and tastes absolutely amazing.

Ideally you would need to twist the dough a little before baking but I missed that because I was in a hurry to go somewhere and so the shapes are not ideal but it doesn’t have much of an impact on the taste or texture of the crumb. So mine tourned out more like a roll and less like breadsticks but all’s well that tastes well. Right?

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Makes 10 bread sticks

Recipe from here

WHAT WE NEED

All purpose flour                       200 gms

Whole wheat flour                       50 gms

Water                                            180 gms

Instant yeast                                     5 gms

Salt                                                      5 gms

Olive oil                                              1 tbsp

Black olives, pitted & chopped   120 gms

Dried thyme                                        1 tsp
WHAT TO DO

  • Mix the flours, yeast and salt in a bowl
  • Add the water and olive oil
  • Knead for 5-7 minutes till it is a wet soft dough
  • Add the olives and thyme and mix well to incorporate them in the dough
  • Place them in a greased bowl till the dough triples in size. It should take around 1- 1 1/2 hours
  • Take out the dough and divide into 10 equal parts
  • Roll each part of the dough and twist to form a stick
  • Place on a greased baking tray, cover and set aside for 30 minutes
  • Preheat the oven at 220C
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes or till the top of the bread stick is nicely brown
  • Cool slightly on a wire rack
  • Serve warm
  • Enjoy!

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This is my post for the Blogging Marathon under the theme, Greek dishes.

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Warm, Caramelized Baby Potato & Onion Salad

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While I was baking all those delicious breads last month, I was also feeling very guilty about eating so many breads all at once. That is when I decided to eat salads to kind of compensate for all that wheat. This is one of the lovely salads that I had.

The recipe is from a book ‘Diva Green: a vegetarian cookbook’ by Ritu Dalmia. It is a fun book with recipes divided amongst potatoes, pumpkins, mushrooms, greens, fruits and such others. There are lovely salads, soups and few baked dishes I have marked to try. I will post a few of them as part of my Cooking from Cookbook Challenge this month. 

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Serves 2

WHAT WE NEED

Baby potatoes, halved        500 gms

Baby onions, peeled            250 gms

Walnuts, roughly chopped  1/2 cup

Butter                                        25 gms

Brown sugar                            1 tsp

Spring onions, chopped        2

Raisins                                      2 tbsp

Lemon, medium size             1

Salt & pepper
Coriander leaves to garnish 

Paneer, crumbled, to garnish
WHAT TO DO

  • Soak the raisins in some water for 10 minutes. Drain it and set aside
  • Boil the baby potatoes in salted water for 10 minutes and remove with slotted spoon
  • In the same water, boil the baby onions for 10 minutes and drain
  • In a pan, toast the walnuts for about 5 minutes on medium heat and set aside
  • In the same pan, heat the butter and once it melts, add the brown sugar
  • When the mixture turns dark, add the potatoes and onions and cook for 2-3 minutes till they are nicely brown
  • In a large bowl, toss the potatoes, onions, spring onions, walnuts and raisins. 
  • Juice the lemon and mix well
  • Season with salt & pepper
  • Garnish with crumbled paneer and coriander leaves
  • Enjoy!

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This is my post for the Blogging Marathon under the theme, ‘Picnic Dishes’.

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This is my entry for the Cooking from Cookbook Challenge hosted by Srivalli.

Saffron Buns

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I have to confess. This is part this theme and part a desperate attempt to somehow make it fit into the theme because I couldn’t do it last month as part of the mega marathon. Aren’t they cute? These are Swedish saffron buns and they are so aromatic. As I was telling you yesterday, I have this major fear of forgetting ingredients and letting them go waste. Last year my parents visited Kashmir and my mom went slightly overboard in buying saffron. When I say slightly, I mean ‘I have to gift this to every person of my acquaintance so let me buy the entire supply from the valley’ level overboard. And to her credit she did gift it to almost every person of her acquaintance (you should be friends with my mom, it is so beneficial) but she did prepare for contingencies which left her with quite a few extra cute boxes of saffron. Naturally, I was part inheritor of those boxes and so now I have around 3 boxes of saffron sitting in my fridge and staring at me every time I open it. While I know saffron doesn’t spoil easily, I am still kinda sorta uncomfortable looking at them all the time. So for the past one years, the husband has been wondering as to why all the sweet dishes in the house are orange in colour and I am yet to get through box one. 

Hence you can imagine how insanely happy I was to spot a bread recipe with saffron. I intend making his a weekl dish at home and thankfully the daughter loved it. Yay! And I am sure the husband will like it once he has them. Yes, I had them for lunch, don’t judge me. Anyway this recipe is from Gayathri’s blog and so egg free. Yum is the word.

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Makes 6 pieces

Recipe adapted from here

WHAT WE NEED

Saffron                        a pinch

Hot water                    1 tbsp

All purpose flour       1 1/2 cups

Sugar                            2 tbsp

Instant yeast               1 1/2 tsp

Oil                                  2 tbsp

Curds                             3 tbsp

Milk                                1/4 cup + for wash

Raisins                           12

WHAT TO DO

  • Add the saffron strands to the hot water and set aside
  • Mix the flour, sugar and yeast in a large bowl
  • Add the milk, curds and oil to the bowl
  • Add the saffron water and mix well
  • Knead for 10-12 minutes till you get a soft pliant dough
  • Cover and set aside in a greased bowl till the dough doubles in volume
  • Punch down the dough and divide it into 6 parts
  • Roll each part into a 12″ rope and twist the ends to form the ‘S’ shape
  • Transfer all the 6 portions of the dough to a greased baking tray
  • Keep a raisin at the two ends of the ‘S’ for each portion
  • Set aside for 20-25 minutes
  • Preheat the oven to 200C
  • Brush the dough with milk just before baking
  • Bake for 20 minutes or till the top is nicely brown
  • Let it cool for 10 minutes
  • Enjoy with some jam or butter or both!

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This is my post for the Blogging Marathon under the theme ‘Picnic Dishes’.

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Eggless Rose Petal Jam & Cardamom Muffins

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We had a fabulous BM meet in February when around a dozen of us met in Delhi and had an absolute blast. I met some of my fellow marathoners for the first time and we got along like a house on fire. During that trip, we visited a spice market and picked up some spices and condiments, one of which was dried rose petals. Now, when I have something on hand, I am always eager to finish it up because I am perennially worried about forgetting about stuff and remembering only when it is too late. Most of my nightmares are about discovering a long lost ingredient after it’s expiry. 

So I was looking for recipes using dried rose petals and I landed on this rose petal jam / gulkand muffin recipe. It was so simple that I wanted to make it immediately. It had oats flour, cardamom an pistachios which convinced me of its flavour and aroma. But the recipe had egg and I was out of eggs. So I replaced that with some curds and the result was a soft, aromatic and delicious muffin. The daughter and husband gobbled up quite a few which is the intended goal anyway. 

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Makes 12 medium sized muffins

Recipe adapted from here

WHAT WE NEED

All purpose flour             1/2 cup

Quick cooking oats          1/2 cup

Sugar                                  5-6 tbsp

Cardamom powder         1 tsp

Baking powder                1/2 tsp

Baking soda                      1/4 tsp heaped

Salt                                      1/4 tsp

Milk                                     1/2 cup

Canola oil                            2 tbsp

Curds                                   1/4 cup

Pistachios, chopped          3-4 tbsp

Rose petal jam / Gulkand 3 tbsp

Dried rose petals (optional)  to sprinkle               

WHAT TO DO

  • Preheat the oven to 175C
  • Line a muffin tray with muffin cup liners
  • Powder the oats finely in a blender 
  • Mix all the dry ingredients, all purpose flour, oats flour, sugar, cardamom powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt in a bowl
  • Mix the milk, curds and oil in another bowl
  • Mix the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients to form a batter
  • Add the chopped pistachios and rose petal jam and mix to combine
  • Pour into muffin cups up to 3/4 full
  • Sprinkle few dried rose petals on top
  • Bake for 20 minutes or till a toothpick inserted comes out clean
  • Allow it to cool for 15 minutes
  • Enjoy!

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This is my post for the Blogging Marathon under the theme, Picnic dishes’.

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A to Z Baking Around the World – A Recap

April Roundup

The April Mega Marathon, Baking around the world, was about baking 26 dishes, one from each alphabet A-Z from different countries of the world without a repeating a country more than twice. I had chosen to bake only breads for the entire month which was a thrilling and satisfying experience. Before commencing on the roundup, there are certain things I found interesting. In this one month, I have blogged about-

  • 26 Bread Recipes
  • From 22 different countries
  • 5 different types of breads – stuffed breads, bread with toppings, braided breads, decorative breads, loaves, artisan breads,
  • Using 4 different types of flours – All purpose flour, Rye flour, Whole wheat flour, Cornmeal, Buckwheat flour
  • With 6 different leavening agents – baking powder, instant yeast, wholewheat sourdough, potato sourdough, all purpose flour sponge, rye flour starter
  • Trying 9 different methods -regular instant yeast and two risings, one rising, a day old starter, 2 day old starter, an hour old sponge starter, baking in a cold oven, baking with ice cubes, baking with steam, baking with a glaze / roomal on the dough

As you can see I had a fabulous time and learned so much from this whole experience. Of course, there are other things I wanted to accomplish like using more flours like spelt, finger millet, etc. and some other methods which I had to give up due to lack of time and plan. But overall I am reasonably satisfied with this month long blogging. This is my second mega marathon. My first one was in September when I blogged about 26 different soups. Now that I think about it, the combination of soups and breads is a classic. Now, on to the round-up

A for Ajdov Kruh from Slovenia

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B for Broa from Portugal

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C for Challah from Israel

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D for Deli style Rye bread from USA

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E for Estonian Kringle from Estonia

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F for Focaccia from Italy

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G for Grissini from Italy

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H for Hungarian Bread Ring from Hungary

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I for Insalata Caprese Loaf from Italy

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J for Jamaican Hard Dough Bread from Jamaica

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K for Khachapuri from Georgia

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L for Landbrot from Germany

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M for Montreal Bagel from Canada

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N for Nan-e-Barbari from Iran

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O for Olive Bread from Mediterranean (France / Greece / Spain)

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P for Pain d’epi from France

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Q for Quick Bread (Beer Bread) from USA

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R for Rewena Paraoa from New Zealand

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S for Sourdough bread with tomatoes and thyme from Switzerland

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T for Taftan from Iran

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U for Ukrainian Christmas Bread (Kolach) from Ukraine

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V for Vienna Bread from Austria

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W for Water Bread (Pain de Agua) from Puerto Rico

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X for Xacuti Khara Bread from India

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Y for Yang Pabbang from Korea

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Z for Za’atar Pull Apart Bread from England 

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That’s it from me for now. Do check out the blogs of my fellow marathoners for some amazing baked dishes from across the world.