Showing posts with label vegan. Show all posts
Showing posts with label vegan. Show all posts

Jan 14, 2019

Honey and Tahini Cookies

cookies, delicious, easy, egg-free, eggless, honey, honey and tahini cookies, Recipe, sesame, simple, tahini, vegan,

These delicious egg-free cookies have the nutty flavor of tahini paired with the sweetness of honey. Rolling the dough in sesame seeds gives them a satisfying crunch.

cookies, delicious, easy, egg-free, eggless, honey, honey and tahini cookies, Recipe, sesame, simple, tahini, vegan,
Delicious homemade tahini! Learn how to make your own tahini here.

I love the taste of tahini so when I saw this egg-free recipe in Epicurious from Mameleh's Deli in Cambridge, Massachusetts, I had to try it! For those of you who might wonder “What even is tahini?” Tahini simply is sesame butter. (If you'd like to try making your own tahini my recipe is here.) These cookies couldn’t be simpler to make, and they are extremely, meltingly, delicious. The addition of tahini in this recipe gives the cookies an unexpected, yet pleasant quality, almost like peanut butter cookies, but lighter and crispier. The only thing I changed from the original recipe was adding an extra tablespoonful of honey. The additional honey added a tad more sweetness and a bit more delicate crunch to their shortbread-like texture. Enjoy!

Ingredients:
3/4C butter
3/4C sugar
3/4C tahini
1/4C honey
1tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2C flour
1/2 C toasted sesame seeds (for rolling)

Here's what to do:
1) Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter, sugar, tahini, honey, baking powder and salt in a large bowl until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

cookies, delicious, easy, egg-free, eggless, honey, honey and tahini cookies, Recipe, sesame, simple, tahini, vegan,

2) Add flour in 2 batches, beating after each addition until fully combined. The dough will be slightly sticky.

3) When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350F/180C Place sesame seeds in a small bowl. Line baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment.

cookies, delicious, easy, egg-free, eggless, honey, honey and tahini cookies, Recipe, sesame, simple, tahini, vegan,

4) Scoop scant tablespoons of dough and roll into balls. Dip tops of balls in sesame seeds, pressing to adhere, and place, sesame seed side up, on prepared baking sheets, spacing about 2 inches apart.

cookies, delicious, easy, egg-free, eggless, honey, honey and tahini cookies, Recipe, sesame, simple, tahini, vegan,

5) Bake cookies, rotating baking sheets halfway through, until golden brown, mine took 15–20 minutes. Let cool on baking sheets (cookies are fragile while warm but will firm as they cool) for at least 5 minutes. Makes about 30 cookies.

cookies, delicious, easy, egg-free, eggless, honey, honey and tahini cookies, Recipe, sesame, simple, tahini, vegan,

Wondering why Bibi has only been baking cookies recently? It is because of this man:


We have been graced with the presence of the finest Waza of all Kashmir! Mr. Bashir Ahmed Waza has been our houseguest for the past week and has treated us to Wazwan dishes of his creation daily. So I haven't had to cook at all for the last month!
Yippee!
Bibi

Jan 7, 2019

How to make Tahini

diy, easy, healthy, home made, inexpensive, oil, Recipe, seeds, sesame, simple, tahini, vegan,

Tahini is a paste made from sesame seeds and is a staple in many cuisines, especially in the Middle East. Here's my quick and easy technique to make tahini that tastes so much better than anything store bought!

diy, easy, healthy, home made, inexpensive, oil, Recipe, seeds, sesame, simple, tahini, vegan,
Tahini grinding mill in the Old City of Jerusalem, Israel
The word tahini is derived from the Arabic verb "طحن " or "ṭaḥana" meaning "to grind." Tahini is known throughout the Middle East by various names. In Iraq it is called rashi, in Kuwait harda, in Iran ardeh, in Cyprus tashi, in Israel t'hina, and in Turkey tahin. It is often served as a dip on its own or as a component of hummus, baba ghanoush, and halva. Tahini is a great source of calcium, manganese, the amino acid methionine, and omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Compared to peanut butter, tahini has higher levels of fiber and calcium and lower levels of sugar and saturated fats.
diy, easy, healthy, home made, inexpensive, oil, Recipe, seeds, sesame, simple, tahini, vegan,

My favorite way to eat tahini is on toast or straight from a spoon, I love its peanut butter-y flavor. I prefer to make my tahini with sesame seeds that have been deeply toasted but you can dry roast (or not) your sesame seeds to any degree you wish. I use rice bran oil to make tahini although olive oil is more traditional. (Really any neutral tasting oil will do.) The sesame seeds we get here in Nepal are a mix of hulled and unhulled, you will most likely only see the hulled, white version in western countries. Unhulled sesame seeds result in a darker color and nuttier flavored tahini. A pinch of salt improves flavor and helps preserve the tahini but is optional. Any way you choose to make tahini, I'm sure you'll agree it's easy to make and much tastier than readymade:

Ingredients:
1 C sesame seeds
3-4 TBS oil of choice (olive oil is traditional but I use rice bran oil)
1/2 tsp salt (optional)

Here's what to do:
1) Preheat oven to 350F/175C. Spread sesame seeds onto a baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven until seeds are fragrant, stirring every few minutes, usually about 10 to 12 minutes. OR Heat a heavy-duty skillet over medium-high heat and add the sesame seeds. Stir frequently until they begin to turn golden brown and then stir constantly for about 4-5 minutes.  Be careful, sesame seeds burn very easily.

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2) Allow toasted seeds to cool and transfer to a mixie or blender and add oil and salt (if using).


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3) Blend until smooth, adding additional oil if needed. The goal is a thick, yet pourable texture. Refrigerate in a sealed container. This tahini should last for 1 month if refrigerated. The oil may separate, so stir it together if needed when using. You may need to bring it room temperature to stir it together if it’s become too solid. Makes about 3/4C depending on how much oil you use.

diy, easy, healthy, home made, inexpensive, oil, Recipe, seeds, sesame, simple, tahini, vegan,



Anybody else make their own tahini?

What are your favorite recipes with tahini?

Calmly currying on,
Bibi

Dec 31, 2018

Homemade Hobnobs (egg free)

biscuits, britain, british, coookies, easy, egg free, eggless, golden syrup, hobnobs, homemade, honey, mcvitie's, oats, Recipe, uk, vegan,

Oaty, buttery, and moreish-ly crisp - this homemade version of the popular British biscuit is downright addictive! Sturdy enough for dunking, egg free, and easy enough to make in a single afternoon.

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"One nibble and you're nobbled"

Hobnobs are a commercial biscuit introduced by McVitie's in the UK in 1985. The McVitie's Hobnob is the third most popular biscuit in the UK to dunk into tea, with its chocolate-dipped variant ranked sixth. They are reminiscent of Anzac biscuits but without the coconut. We get them here in Nepal from a factory in Delhi. I'm rather fond of them but though they are sturdy enough for dunking they often arrive here powdered from the long, bouncy truck ride up to the Himalayas from the Indian plains. So I found this amazing recipe in Bon Appetit to make them at home!

biscuits, britain, british, coookies, easy, egg free, eggless, golden syrup, hobnobs, homemade, honey, mcvitie's, oats, Recipe, uk, vegan,
The UK's greatest culinary achievement!
This "made from scratch" version of one of the UK's favorite biscuits is even tastier than the original! The salty-meets-sweet buttery flavor and crunchiness have made them my absolute favorite cookie. I did make a few minor changes to the recipe. The original recipe called for two teaspoonfuls of honey. I used golden syrup and increased the amount to one tablespoonful. Golden syrup is the authentic, caramel-like flavor of McVities Hobnobs, honey will work but the flavor won't be quite as spot on. Measuring out two teaspoonfuls of golden syrup or honey is ridiculously fiddly and when it comes to either, more is MOAR! I also baked mine at 325F/165C instead of 300F/150C because that's the temperature my crappy toaster oven is stuck at. Rolled oats are preferred but I have made them with quick-cooking oats on occasion too. The quick-cooking oats make for a slightly denser cookie that is just as delicious. Any way you choose to make them I'm sure you'll love them! Off to the recipe:

Ingredients:
1 C butter, softened to room temperature
1 C granulated sugar
1&1/2 tsp baking soda
1&1/2 tsp salt
1 TBS golden syrup or honey
2 TBS whole milk
1&1/2 C flour
1&1/2 C rolled oats

Here's what to do:
1) Using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat together butter, sugar, baking soda, and salt until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in milk and golden syrup (or honey).

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2) Turn off the mixer and add flour and oats. Combine until just mixed. You can cover the dough in cling wrap and chill or freeze it or go on to the next step if you wish. I have found that chilling does improve the shape of these cookies but is not necessary.

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3) Preheat oven to 325F/165C. Spoon scant tablespoonfuls of dough onto silicone mat or parchment-lined baking sheets, pressing down lightly to flatten and spacing one and one-half inches apart. They will spread quite a bit.

biscuits, britain, british, coookies, easy, egg free, eggless, golden syrup, hobnobs, homemade, honey, mcvitie's, oats, Recipe, uk, vegan,

4) Bake cookies until golden brown on the bottoms and around the edges, about 25–30 minutes. Allow to cool for at least 5 minutes before transferring from baking sheet to wire rack.  (They will be soft at first but will crisp up as they cool). Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week. Makes about 30 cookies.

biscuits, britain, british, coookies, easy, egg free, eggless, golden syrup, hobnobs, homemade, honey, mcvitie's, oats, Recipe, uk, vegan,

To all my dear readers, friends, family, and acquaintances,


Out with the old and in with the new: may you be happy the whole year through. 
Happy New Year!

Bibi

    Apr 16, 2018

    Tips & Tools: How to Make Perfect Fluffy Rice

    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,

    We eat rice every day, twice a day. Before I moved to South Asia I had rarely cooked rice. I had never even used a rice cooker! Googling the subject of cooking rice only revealed numerous methods with less than perfect results. So I emailed my Chinese-American university pal Eileen as to how to properly cook rice. I quickly learned that western methods of cooking rice were overly complicated and prone to failure.

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    The first thing my friend recommended was to buy a rice cooker. Well, we had a rice cooker but it had no instructions and we rarely had electricity to even run the thing back then. Now that we have 20 hours of electricity a day I can concur that a rice cooker is one of the most cost-effective gadgets ever. If you cook rice on a regular basis you definitely need a rice cooker. It is the easiest and most time-saving appliance ever, just set it and forget it!

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    This is the kind of rice we eat every day!

    The technique my friend Eileen taught me to cook rice is the absorption method. This is the most common way to cook rice in Asia. Rather than drowning the rice in water and hoping for the best, one adds only as much as the rice needs to cook, and waits for it to absorb while cooking. -It is the simplest way to cook rice and I have found it gives the most reliable results. The method you use to cook rice also depends on the variety of rice you are using. Indians tend to use long-grain rice and use techniques to create separate grains that remain perfectly intact. The Chinese use starchier medium-grain varieties so that the rice sticks together, making it easier to pick up with chopsticks. I have cooked both a local short-grain pearl rice and long-grain Basmati rice with this absorption method with excellent results for the past 10 years!
    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,
    1/2 cup uncooked rice = 1&1/2 cups cooked rice

    First, you'll want to determine how many servings of rice you wish to make. I usually estimate one and a half cups of cooked rice per adult for my Indian family then add an extra half cup just in case. Rice triples in volume when cooked so that's one-half cup per person of uncooked rice.
    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,
    ONE PART RICE TO TWO PARTS WATER
    The second and most crucial part of this technique is the ratio of rice to water. All sorts of variables come into play here: the type of rice being cooked, the age of the rice, humidity levels, how well the lid fits on the pot you use, the temperature of the burner being used, altitude, what phase the moon is in (kidding) - the list goes on. Because of all these variables, this is the step that may require some trial and error. The best place to look for the proper ratio the rice is to be cooked at is the directions on the package the rice came in. (Amazingly enough, the instructions on the back of rice packages are usually correct.) If that is unavailable I usually estimate one part rice to two parts water. Sometimes we buy local rice that comes in a plain burlap sack from a village and sometimes we buy rice from the supermarket that's labeled. If the rice is really fresh (as in recently harvested) it may need a little less water to cook. Rice harvested more than a year previous generally requires more water than recently harvested rice due to decreased moisture content. Cooking rice is game of ratios, so be sure to measure carefully unless you want a bowl full of disappointment.

    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,
    This is how rice gets cleaned so there's bound to be twigs, pebbles, or bugs in it!
    Third, unless you are using rice that is fortified or enriched you will have to wash it. Rinsing traditionally polished rice alters its texture when cooked. Rinsing removes the thin layer of starch from the surface of each grain and keeps the rice from sticking together thus ensuring perfectly separate grains. Long-grain rice, like Basmati, is always rinsed for this reason. This doesn't have to be an extremely thorough sort of a cleanse. I usually rinse the rice twice over the sink by submerging it in water, swirling the rice with my fingers, then pouring off the cloudy water. Submersion allows any debris like twigs, bran, or insects to float out of the rice also. I have seen recommendations on the internet to rinse rice until the drainage water runs clear- this will never happen no matter how many times you rinse the rice I assure you.
    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,
    2-Acetyl-1-pyrroline: the aromatic compound that gives bread, jasmine rice, basmati rice, pandan, popcorn, & bread flowers their characteristic scent
    Fourth, you need to decide if you wish to soak the rice or not. Soaking the rice speeds up cooking which affects the flavor of the rice. By letting the rice soak for 15 to 30 minutes, you can decrease the cooking time of most rice varieties by about 20 percent.  2-Acetyl-1-pyrroline is the flavor compound in aromatic rice varieties that is responsible for their characteristic popcorn-like aroma.  2-Acetyl-1-pyrroline dissipates while cooking. The longer the rice is exposed to heat, the less of an aromatic flavor it will have. By soaking the rice and shortening the cooking time, you will get more flavorful results. Some people rinse again after soaking the rice, I do not find it necessary.

    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,

    Fifth, add a little oil, ghee, or butter to the rice and water before cooking. This is optional but it will add flavor to the rice, help keep the grains separate, and prevent dryness if the rice is left standing for more than an hour after cooking. Restaurants usually do this to keep cooked rice tasting fresher and tender longer. I usually only add a little butter or ghee for special occasions such as if we are having dinner guests. Most Indians and Nepalis do not add salt to their rice when cooking so I don't add it either.

    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,

    Sixth, cook the rice over medium heat and with the lid on. If the temperature is too high you run the risk of scorching the rice at the bottom of the pot or unevenly cooked grains. If the temperature is too low you'll get a gloopy mess of undercooked rice. Put the lid on and keep it on throughout the cooking process. I recommend only lifting the lid to check the rice after 15 minutes. Do not stir the rice while it is cooking as you risk breaking the grains, releasing more starch, and a mushy mess. You can tell that the rice is completely cooked when all the water has boiled away, there are "fish eyes" or holes in the rice, and you can hear a crackling noise rather than a bubbling noise signifying that the water has completely boiled away.

    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,

    The last and most important step: let it rest! Resting is an unskippable step. When the rice has finished cooking remove the pot from the burner and let it sit with the lid still on. Allow the rice to rest for at least 10 minutes after it's done cooking to achieve optimum texture. This rule goes for all types of rice. Keep the rice covered until you’re ready to eat. Just before serving fluff the rice with a fork or rice paddle. As the Indian proverb goes, grains of rice should be like brothers – close, but not stuck together.
     
    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,
    Perfection!
    So there you have it: ratio, rinse, soak, flavor, cook, rest, and fluff! Follow these easy steps and you'll get perfect, fluffy, rice every time. This is it - the foolproof recipe to cook rice on the stovetop:

    Ingredients:
    1&1/2 C long-grain white rice
    3 C water
    1 tsp cooking oil, butter, or ghee (optional)

    Here's what to do:
    1) Measure out 1&1/2 cups rice and place into a pot with a tight-fitting lid. Cooked rice expands to three times its original size so be sure to choose an adequately sized pot. 
    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,

    2) Over the sink add room-temperature water to the rice until it is covered by about an inch. Use your fingers to swirl the rice and water around the pan. Drain the cloudy water off of the rice through your hand. Discard any debris that floats to the surface. Repeat this process one to two more times. 

    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,

    3) Add 3 cups water to the rinsed rice and a teaspoonful of oil, butter, or ghee if using. For fluffier rice, the rice should be soaked for at least 15 minutes or up to 30 minutes prior to cooking.

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    4) Cover and place the pot on a burner set on medium heat. Allow rice to cook for 15 to 20* minutes or until water has evaporated and the rice is tender. I usually check on the rice after 15 minutesYou may raise the lid occasionally to see if the water is boiling, see if the water has evaporated, or to listen for a crackling noise signifying that the last of the water has boiled away. Do not stir the rice while it is cooking.

    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,
    The little holes you see in the rice are called 'fisheyes' and signify that the rice has been cooked properly.



    5) Remove pan from heat. Keep the lid on. Let rice stand, covered, for 10–15 minutes to firm up and absorb the last bit of water.

    absorption, Asian, cook, easy, fluffy, grain, Indian, long, make, method, perfect, Recipe, rice, simple, vegan, vegetarian, white,

    6) Remove the lid just before serving and fluff the rice with a fork or rice paddle. Serve hot. This recipe makes 4&1/2 cups cooked rice.

    Helpful Hints:
    The same procedure can be used for a rice cooker. Instead of step 4 just place the pot in the rice cooker instead of on a stove burner.

    *If cooking at altitudes over 3,000ft/1,000M increase cooking time by 5 minutes.

    A special thanks to my dear friend Eileen!

    Apr 9, 2018

    Indian-Style Yellow Cabbage

    cabbage, easy, garlic, Indian, mustard, Recipe, simple, stir fry, turmeric, vegan, vegetarian, yellow,

    This simple cabbage stir-fry uses zesty mustard seeds, earthy turmeric, garlic, and a pinch of red chili to create a flavorful side dish that can quickly be made for a gathering. An easy to make vegan recipe that pairs well with rice and rotis.

    cabbage, easy, garlic, Indian, mustard, Recipe, simple, stir fry, turmeric, vegan, vegetarian, yellow,

    This recipe is adapted from 5 Spices, 50 dishes by Ruta Kahate. The premise of her cookbook is simple: with five common spices and a few basic ingredients, home cooks can create fifty mouthwatering Indian dishes, as diverse as they are delicious. Ms. Kahate teaches regional Indian cooking from her home-based school in Oakland, California, which has been featured on the Fine Living Network. I bought this book when it first came out in 2007. It is very well written and beautifully photographed. About half the recipes are authentically Indian while the other half are interesting modern fusions with western cuisine. My only complaint is that the recipes are a bit bland for my family's tastes- this is usually easily remedied by simply doubling the spices.

    cabbage, easy, garlic, Indian, mustard, Recipe, simple, stir fry, turmeric, vegan, vegetarian, yellow,

    Cabbage was never a favorite vegetable of mine until I moved to South Asia. I never cared for the western methods of preparing cabbage whether raw and shredded as in coleslaw, braised, or even pickled as in sauerkraut. Asian cuisines do cabbage best with simple stir-fries or salads dressed lightly with pungent oil and vinegar or lime juice dressings. This recipe is exemplary of how simple yet flavorsome a cabbage dish can be. (It's also quite pretty in it's glossy and golden yellow presentation.) I have altered the spices in the recipe to suit my family's tastes and to accommodate a slightly larger amount cabbage than entailed in the original recipe. I've used Kashmiri mirch instead of the recommended cayenne. Kashmiri mirch gives more of a rich chili flavor than cayenne and boosts the brilliant yellow coloring of the turmeric in this dish. Most cabbage dishes in Nepal or India are served a little crunchy or al dente, we prefer ours a bit well done. I also prefer frying the cabbage the Kashmiri way in salted oil. Frying in salted oil results in those little carmelized bits of loveliness that add so much flavor. Don't be too skimpy with the oil in this recipe as that's what is carrying the flavor. If you are using a non-stick pan you could probably get away with 3 tablespoons full of your favorite cooking oil, if not then I'd advise sticking to the full quarter cup. Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do!

    Ingredients:
    3 to 4 TBS cooking oil of choice
    1&1/2 tsp brown mustard seeds/rai
    4 cloves garlic/lahsun, minced finely
    1&1/2 tsp ground turmeric/haldi
    1 small to medium head of cabbage, cored and thinly sliced
    salt to taste
    1/2 to 1 tsp Kashmiri mirch or  cayenne pepper/degi mirch (use less for less heat)

    Here's what to do:
    1) In a large lidded skillet or kadhai, heat the oil with 1 teaspoon of salt over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Add mustard seeds and reduce heat to medium. Add the minced garlic and allow to just brown a little bit.

    2) Add the sliced cabbage, turmeric, and chili powder and give the mixture a good stir to coat the cabbage with the oil and spices.

    3) Cover and cook until the cabbage is cooked to desired tenderness. (We like our cabbage VERY tender which takes about 10 to 12 minutes.) Stir every three minutes or so. If mixture begins to scorch or stick add a tablespoonful of water, reduce heat and stir. Taste and adjust salt if necessary. Serve hot or warm with rice and/or rotis.

    Helpful hints:
    Try to choose a smaller head of cabbage for this dish, they are more tender and have a milder flavor than the larger heads.

    Do not use purple cabbage for this dish unless you don't mind the sickly blue-green shade it will turn when you fry it with the turmeric

    Mar 18, 2018

    Green Apple Chutney

    apple, chutney, dip, green, hot, Indian, Recipe, salsa, sauce, spicy, vegan, vegetarian,

    Try this green apple chutney for a hot and spicy way to eat your apple a day! This easy recipe pairs well with everything from rice and rotis to steaks and roast chicken.

    Every great once in awhile our local market gets a load of Granny Smith apples in. Often there seems to be some confusion as to where these tart, crisp, bright green apples come from as you can see in the above photo.  It boggles my mind that the apples probably spent 2 to 3 months in a nitrogen-flushed container on a ship from the US to get all the way to Nepal. Then they had to ride on a train and a truck from a port in Mumbai or Kolkata across the searing plains of India up here. After that, I get the pleasure of buying 3-month-old apples for about $3USD a pound! Nevertheless, Pippins and Granny Smith's are my favorite apples and I buy them. I've seen several recipes for South Asian style chutneys combining green apples and cilantro all over the internet. The combination sounded intriguing but few of the recipes suited my family's tastes. Too sweet, too tart, too bland were the complaints. After much trial and error, this is the recipe I've come up with for a green chutney using green apples. It has a nice balance of tart to sweet while garlic, ginger, and chilis give it some spicy heat. We enjoy this chutney with rice but it would also pair well with barbecued meats, kebabs, Mexican dishes, or roast chicken or turkey. Eating healthy is easy when it tastes this good!

    Ingredients:
    1 tart green apple, cored and chopped (leave the skin on)
    2 C cilantro/dhania, leaves and stems roughly chopped
    1 TBS oil of choice (I use rice bran oil or virgin olive oil)
    2 tsp ginger/adrak paste or 1-inch fresh ginger
    2 tsp garlic/lahsun paste or 2 cloves garlic
    1-2 green chilis/hari mirch (omit for less heat)
    1 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp Kashmiri mirch or chili powder (omit or use less for less heat)
    1 TBS lime juice or 1 TBS white vinegar

    Here's what to do:
    1) Whiz all ingredients in a mixie, blender, or food processor to a fine paste. Salt to taste.

    apple, chutney, dip, green, hot, Indian, Recipe, salsa, sauce, spicy, vegan, vegetarian,

     2) Keep in a sealed container in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

    apple, chutney, dip, green, hot, Indian, Recipe, salsa, sauce, spicy, vegan, vegetarian,

    Helpful Hints:
    Chutney keeps for 4-5 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

     If the chutney is too sour for you try adding a pinch of sugar to sweeten it up.

     If the chutney is too hot for you try adding a tablespoonful of yogurt to cool it down.


    I know I'm a day late but Happy St Patrick's day!


    Mar 11, 2018

    Garam Masala Spiced Almonds

    indian, garam masala, almonds, easy, recipe, simple, spicy, roasted, vegan,

    Garam Masala Spiced Almonds are the perfect healthy snack with a kick. The bold flavors of traditional Indian spices make these nuts addictively delicious!


    indian, garam masala, almonds, easy, recipe, simple, spicy, roasted, vegan,

    Typically when you pay a casual visit to a household in India or Nepal you are served a warm drink, something salty, and something sweet. The drink is usually sweet, milky chai (tea) or sweetened "milk coffee." The salty item can be anything from readymade chaat mixes to potato chips. The sweets are usually biscuits or cake. (I've even been served some unique combinations such as cake and potato chips.) Garam Masala Spiced Almonds are something I started making to serve guests before we could buy readymade chaat mixes (like Haldirams) in packets here in Nepal. It seemed a natural choice as almonds are a favorite treat in my husband's native Kashmir. I'm not sure where I originally found this recipe but I suspect it may have been from the legendary Canadian Chef Vikram Vij.

    indian, garam masala, almonds, easy, recipe, simple, spicy, roasted, vegan,
    Parsi-Style Garam Masala
    Over the years I've added and altered the recipe to our tastes. Instead of cayenne, I use Kashmiri mirch for a richer chili kick. Lime juice adds a tart zing in place of the sweeter amchur/mango powder sometimes. Adding asafoetida/hing or garlic powder was entirely my idea to add an umami boost to the mix. You may certainly vary the flavor by using different regional versions of garam masala blends. You'll find recipes for Garam MasalaParsi Garam Masala, Kashmiri Garam Masala, Nepali Garam Masala, and Mughlai Garam Masala on this blog. The oil you choose to make this recipe with can change the flavor a great deal too. Using coconut or sesame oil adds a rich, traditional note while flavorless oils like canola and sunflower oils add none. You can even use raw cashews in this recipe too but be sure to roast them separately from almonds as they cook faster. I hope you'll love this recipe as much as my family does! Off to the recipe:

    Ingredients:
    1 TBS garam masala
    1 tsp Kashmiri mirch or cayenne powder
    1 tsp mango powder/amchur or 2 tsp lime/lemon juice
    1/4 tsp asafoetida/hing or garlic powder (optional)
     2 TBS vegetable oil of choice oil
     3 C raw almonds or cashews
    2-3 tsp salt to taste 

    Here's what to do:
    1) Preheat oven to 350F. Place rack in the middle of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.

    indian, garam masala, almonds, easy, recipe, simple, spicy, roasted, vegan,

    2) In a large bowl, combine spices, and oil. Add almonds or cashews and stir until well coated. Pour coated nuts onto a baking sheet and spread out evenly over the pan.

    indian, garam masala, almonds, easy, recipe, simple, spicy, roasted, vegan,

    3) Bake for 6-8 minutes. Stir with a spatula or spoon, return to oven and bake an additional 6 minutes. Be careful not to burn or scorch the nuts- if the almonds start to turn dark brown around the edges they are burnt. Remember that the almonds will continue cooking for a few minutes after you remove them from the oven.
    indian, garam masala, almonds, easy, recipe, simple, spicy, roasted, vegan,

    4) Remove from oven and allow to cool for 1 hour before serving. Store in an air-tight container for up to one month in a cool, dry place.


    Helpful Hints: 
    If after roasting the nuts are not salted enough for your taste simply sprinkle additional salt and stir them with a spatula or shake them in a jar.

    If you are making this recipe with raw cashews be sure to shorten the cooking times by 4-5 minutes.

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