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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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.

Stuffed & Baked Apples

   

This is a sinfully delightful way to eat apples. It’s rich and juicy and warm and cozy. Also, it’s apples and hence predominantly guilt free! 
 
The best part was I could get almost one apple along with some raisins and walnuts into the little one’s stomach. Makes it a favorite right away! Also, it’s a quick and easy desert to serve while having people over. The recipe is from here.

Serves 2

So here goes –

WHAT WE NEED

Apples                             2

Brown sugar                  3 tbsp

Butter                              1 tbsp

Walnuts, chopped       4 tbsp

Raisins                            4 tbsp

Cinnamon powder       1/2 tsp

Nutmeg powder            1/4 tsp

Ginger powder              1/2 tsp

Orange Juice                  4 tbsp

WHAT TO DO

  • Preheat the oven to 190C
  • Mix brown sugar, walnuts,raisins, cinnamon powder, nutmeg powder and ginger powder
  • Cut the butter into small pieces and add to this mixture and combine.
  • Cut off the top of the apple and scoop out the flesh with a small spoon.
  • Ensure that the walls and base of the apple are intact.
  • Stuff the sugar mixture into the apples and sprinkle the balance mixture on top.
  • Arrange the apples in a baking dish and pour the orange juice on and around the apples.
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes till the apples are tender and the skin is loosened.
  • Pour the balance orange juice over the apples and serve warm, preferably with ice cream.
  • Enjoy!

     
NOTES

  1. Other options for stuffing are cooked rolled oats, other dried fruits, candied fruits or ginger, etc.
  2. If you are baking more than 3 apples then it is advisable to rotate the baking tray once after 15 minutes of baking.

 


This is part of the
Bake-a-thon 2015 


 

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Butterscotch Blondies

These amazing butterscotch blondies are again from the 500 Cookies Compendium. These are simply amazing in taste with crunch from the walnuts and the richness from the butterscotch and choco chips to top it off. Its to be eaten to be believed.

But we had a mini disaster while baking. Everything was going pretty smoothly. even the daughter was well behaved and was patiently waiting for the cookies to be baked unlike her usual modus operandi of trying to gobble up the batter itself.

The blondies were baked and ready with the perfect golden colour that they had to achieve (hence the name blondies, duh!) and I pulled them from the oven when CRASH! The tray fell and along with it fell the glass pan that i was using to bake these and obviously the blondies as well.

The good news was that I was able to salvage the cookies without any glass piece stuck on them and the daughter wasn’t around when this happened. Huge relief! But the flip side was that I lost a good pan, the cookies lost their shape and became a crumbly heap and I stepped on a few glass pieces and the worst part was I had to clean the entire kitchen at 9 pm. Not fun at all.

But having said that, the taste was amazing and the husband and daughter thought it appropriate to devour these cookies while I was cleaning the kitchen. And they are yet to understand where they went wrong!

Disasters apart, this is a must try recipe. So here goes –

Makes 9 squares

WHAT WE NEED

Butter                                        1/2 cup

Brown sugar                            3/4 cup

Egg                                              1

Vanilla essence                       1/2 tsp

All purpose flour                     1 cup

Baking powder                         3/4 tsp

Pinch of salt

Coarsely chopped walnuts    1/2 cup

Butterscotch powder               1/2 cup

Choco chips                                4 tbsp

 

WHAT TO DO

  • Preheat the oven to 180C
  • Line a 8 * 8 square pan with parchment paper.
  • Melt the butter and add it to the sugar to mix well.
  • Add the egg and vanilla to this mixture and combine
  • Sift in the flour, baking powder and salt. Mix well.
  • Add the walnuts, butterscotch powder and chocochips and combine
  • Pour the batter into the pan
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden
  • Take it from the oven and let it cool in the pan
  • Once cooled, lift the cookies from the pan along with the parchment paper and place it on a cutting board
  • Cut into 9 squares
  • Enjoy!

NOTES

  1. Ideally you need to use butterscotch chips but since my chips melted, i froze and powdered them which was what i used. if you are using butterscotch chips, then increase the flour by 2 tbsp
  2. You can completely omit the butterscotch and use 1 cup walnuts instead.
  3. I used a glass pan and it took me around 32 minutes. you may need around 25 minutes if you use aluminium or non stick.



This is part of the
Bake-a-thon 2015 


 

Wheat Jaggery Cake

My mother gave me almost a kilo of jaggery the last time she visited. She expected me to make puran poli and kozhakatai for the husband. But I was very keen to try baking with jaggery. It is definitely healthier than sugar and I could bake more often without adding a teaspoon of guilt along the way.

So, I found this recipe and immediately started baking it. It tasted awesome but it was dense cake. I assume that wheat plus jaggery would not be the most airy cake. But it could serve as a good desert after dinner without the heaps of calories. Here goes –

INGREDIENTS

Jaggery                 75 gms

Wheat                 110 gms

Bananas             110 gms

Oil                          75 ml

Baking powder      1/2 tsp

Baking soda          1/2 tsp

Cinnamon              1/2 tsp

Walnuts, chopped   10

DIRECTIONS

1. Preheat the oven to 150C

2. Powder the jaggery, mix it with the mashed bananas and keep aside for 10-15 minutes

3. Mix the flour, baking soda and baking powder

4. Add the flour mix to the banana mix

5. Add oil and cinnamon powder

6. Add the walnuts and pour it into a greased pan

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7. Bake at 150C for 30 minutes and then at 160C for 10 minutes

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8. Remove from the oven and cool for 15 minutes and then unmould

Wheat jag cake

NOTES

1. The amount of jaggery would vary depending on its sweetness.

2. Very ripe bananas would be better than regular ones

3. The recipe asked for the bananas and jaggery mixture to be blended in a blender. I did not do that but the texture was good despite not blending

Happy Baking!