MOTICHOOR LADOOS for a special day!!!

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Hello every body…Today is a very happy day for me…My Blog “Food Passion and Love” which reflects my penchant for good food and my passion for cooking and my love for my family is turning 1 year old! I cannot express my happiness…I never knew I would travel this much far..Food Passion and Love has given me a lot of happiness in my life.I have made some good friends from different parts of the world..Though I don’t get much time for blogging with my kids running around me and household chores..you can imagine..! Many a times I have felt like quitting..like putting a total fullstop to blogging because of the stresses in day to day life.Now I thank God I didn’t…Now when I sit in front of the Laptop looking at my Blog..I feel tears welling up in my eyes..it truly gives me a feeling of a sense of achievement.

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The real Blogiversary of Food Passion and Love was on April 2nd ..but due some reasons I could not post or celebrate it here with you all.But what say?Better late than never!

Today is all the more sweeter because today I am posting my 100th post..!Seriously..OMG!Did I cook 100 dishes? Ha Ha Ha..So today I am sharing these sweet news,since its a 2 in one celebration for me!

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Today my post is Motichoor Ladoos.My very very very favourite.

I first had Motichoor Ladoos in Sri Krishna sweets Chennai..I tried one..God..I loved them..I think I could eat 100s of them..really I am not exaggerating! They are extremely irresistible.Infact after eating those ladoos that day ,it had been one of my secret ambitions to make Motichoor Ladoos..though I never mentioned it to any body.I had heard it was a back breaking process to make these ladoos from many of my friends..So I didn’t have the courage to try them until today..

I was totally tensed when I was making these ladoos(Thanks to stories by my dear friends)..but I was overjoyed to see that they turned out to be perfect..I am so happy.Do try it out!

Ingredients:

Oil for Deep frying
Almonds – a few sliced thinly
Boiling Water – 1 or 2 tbsp.
Ghee – 2 tbsp.

For Boondi:
Gram Flour / Besan / Kadala Mavu – 1 cup
Powdered Sooji / Rawa / Semolina – 1 tbsp (Put it in a blender and make into a fine powder)
Water – 1/2 cup or as needed.
Orange Food Colouring – 1/2 tsp.(optional)

For Sugar Syrup:
Sugar – 1 cup
Water – 1/2 cup
Saffron strands – a pinch
Cardamom Powder – 1 tsp

Method:

Step 1: Make the batter
Take gram flour and sooji in a sifter and sieve it in a mixing bowl. Add in water and mix well to form a smooth batter. The batter should be a little thinner than dosa batter. Don’t make it too thin, else the boondi will fall flat. If it is too thick then the boondi wont fall off the ladle. Add in food colouring and mix well Set this aside till you finish making the syrup.

Step 2: Make the sugar syrup
Now take sugar and water in a pan. Mix well so that the sugar gets dissolved in the water. Bring this to a boil. Simmer for 8 to 10 minutess till it forms one string consistency. If you dip the ladle inside the sugar syrup and take it out, then the last drop falling off the ladle should form a string like effect.  Now add in cardamom powder and saffron to this and mix well. Now make sure the syrup stays nice and warm till you finish frying the boondis.

Step 3: Fry the boodis
Heat oil for deep frying. Dont get it too hot. Now take a boondi ladle / perforated spoon ( I used a steel strainer with medium size holes in it). Now take the batter and pour it over the ladle. Using a spoon tap off the ladle, so the boondi will fall through the holes. Fry this on a medium high heat for couple of mins.(Remember each time you are going to fry the batches,wipe clean the laddle with a tissue paper).It shouldn’t get crispy, it should be little on the softer side. Drain the boondi onto a bowl and set aside. Repeat till you finish the batter.

Step 4:  Making ladoos
Now add all the nuts to the boondi and pour the warm syrup over it. Mix well so it gets combined. Now take this in a mixer or food processor. Add a tbsp of boiling water to this and pulse for few times so it gets crushed and becomes one mass. Dont grind it too much or it will get completely mashed up. Now transfer this to a bowl. Dip your hands in ghee and take a small portion from it. Shape into balls and arrange them on a plate. Decorate with a slice of almonds  and enjoy!

GOBI MANCHURIAN | CAULIFLOWER MANCHURIAN

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Today I wish to share with you the recipe of a very popular Indo- Chinese dish , Gobi Manchurian or simply Cauliflower Manchurian. Cauliflower is not a favourite vegetable of many , but Gobi Manchurian surely will change your attitude towards this vegetable like it did to me :)  .Its so tasty. Crispy on the outside yet juicy in the inside. Gobi 65 is another such dish  that can surely make you love cauliflower.Its so easy to make.When ever we have any  function at our house,I make it a point to make Gobi Manchurian.Here goes the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • Cauliflower – 1 medium sized.
  • Maida(All purpose Flour) – 2 tbsp.
  • Corn Flour – 2tbsp.
  • Baking Soda – 1 pinch.
  • Onion – 2 (cubed)
  • Garlic – 7-8 (Finely chopped)
  • Spring Onion – 4 sprigs(chopped)
  • Sweet Chilli Sauce – 1tbsp(You can substitute it with Chilli Tomato Sauce)
  • Soy Sauce – 3 tsp
  • Pepper powder – 1 tsp
  • Salt to taste.
  • Oil – as needed.

Method:

  1. Cut the Cauliflower(Gobi) into tiny florets.Wash it thoroughly and keep aside in a bowl.
  2. In a sauce pan,boil some water.Turn off the flame and pour this hot water onto the cauliflower florets allow to sit for 1 minute and drain the water away.
  3. Now in a bowl,mix Maida(all purpose flour),corn flour and baking soda and a touch of salt together.Add a little water and make into a smooth and uniform batter without any lumps,consistency thick enough to coat the florets.
  4. Heat oil to deep fry the florets in a pan.Now dip the florets into the batter and deep fry till crisp.Drain the excess oil on a kitchen towel and keep aside.Once you have finished deep frying all the florets,turn off the flame.
  5. Now heat 3tbsp of oil in a pan.Add chopped Garlic and give it a quick stir.Then add the white of the spring onions.Saute.Now add the cubed Onions and sauté till transparent and soft.
  6. Now add the pepper powder and stir.To this add the sauces and salt and mix well .
  7. Add the deep fried Cauliflower florets toss to mix uniformly.Lastly,add the green of the spring onion and mix gently and serve with Noodles or Chinese style Rice and Enjoy!

Notes:

You can also add some cubed capsicum for extra flavour.

 

CHICKEN CUTLETS

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Today I loved the climate outdoors..Sunshine and Rain…both together..hand in hand..in harmony.It reminds me of myself and my husband..He loves rain.Me on the other hand love sunshine.So today is a perfect day for both of us and it happened to be the weekend.So I decided to make it extra special by making Chicken Cutlets this evening.This is super easy and a regular in our family.Check it out!

Ingredients:

  • Chicken (boneless pieces)– 1/2 kg
  • Ginger Garlic paste – 3 tsp
  • Chilli powder – 1 tsp
  • Coriander powder – 3 tsp
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp.
  • Crushed black pepper – 1 tsp
  • Garam masala powder – 3tsp
  • Onion – 1 small(chopped finely)
  • Green chillies –  2 (chopped)
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig(chopped small)
  • Potatoes – 1 big(boiled,skinned and mashed)
  • Coriander leaves – 1 tbsp(Chopped)
  • Mint leaves – 1 tbsp(Chopped)
  • Oil – 1 tbsp
  • Oil for deep frying.
  • Water – 1/2 cup to cook the chicken
  • Egg – 2(Beaten in a bowl)
  • Bread crumbs – 1 cup(I didnt use)

Procedure :

  1. Pressure cook chicken with chilli powder,coriander powder,turmeric powder,crushed pepper and garam masala for 3 whistles  and when the pressure releases,open the lid and heat till all the stock/gravy evaporates.Allow to cool.
  2. Mince this cooled cooked chicken in a food processor/mincer/grinder and keep aside.
  3. In a pan,heat 1 tbsp of oil,and add ginger garlic paste and onions and chopped curry leaves ,chopped coriander leaves,chopped mint leaves and green chillies and saute well.
  4. Now add the minced chicken and combine well.Then add the mashed potato and mix everything well .Add salt if needed and turn off the flame and allow to cool.
  5. Make the above mixture after cooled into small balls and using your palm,shape into cutlets.
  6. Dip the cutlets in egg batter and then roll in the breadcrumbs and deep fry.
  7. Serve hot with tomato sauce/mayonnaise and Enjoy!!

Notes:

  • The shaped cutlets can be stored in the freezer for a month. Bring it to room temp before frying.

CHOCOLATE PUDDING

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Pudding is everyone’s favourite dessert..young and old alike..Who wouldn’t  like a creamy,chilled pudding after a long day at the office..all curled up in the couch,watching your favourite TV show!! I would love it…and I am sure you would too..Today my post is a Super Chocolatey Chocolate Pudding.This is perfect for all of you chocolate lovers out there.And if you have kids like mine whos is  crazy about anything chocolatey,then this one is a winner.I tell you they will adore you for this!!!

Ingredients:

  • Milk – 1 ½ cups.
  • Sugar – 2 ½ tbsp
  • Salt – a small pinch.
  • Corn Flour – 3 tbsp.
  • Cocoa Powder – 2 tbsp.
  • Vanilla essence – ½ tsp.
  • Choco chips – 3 tbsp.

Method:

  1. In a bowl,mix cornflour,cocoa powder,salt and sugar,so that the mixture is uniform.
  2. To this,add ½ a cup of milk and mix well without any lumps and keep aside.
  3. Boil water in a pan and double boil the Choco chips in a bowl till completely melted.You can even melt the chocochips in a microwave.Keep this aside.
  4. Now heat the remaining milk(1 cup),to this add the cornflour-milk mixture and mix well.Keep on stirring to avoid lumps.Be careful while doing this as the mixture gets thickened very fast .Add vanilla essence to this and mix well.
  5. Now add the melted Chocolate choco chips/you can call it chocolate sauce to this mixture.Stir for about 3 – 4 minutes  or till thick.Turn off the flame and transfer immediately to the serving bowls.Cover the top of the bowl with a cling wrap.The cling wrap must touch the surface of the pudding.This is done to avoid Pudding skin formation.
  6. Refrigerate for atleast 1 hour.Sprinkle some chocolate grains as I have done or some Chocolate shavings and serve and Enjoy!

 

 

VEGETABLE BIRIYANI

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Hello again..I have got  quite a lot of biriyani recipes in my draft..I am not boasting :) .There is a reason for this..I am crazy and totally in love with Biriyani dishes right from my college days..Be it non vegetarian or vegetarian.By far i have posted Malabar style Chicken Dum Biriyani and Beef Biriyani and Kappa Biriyani in my blog..there are a lot more to come..i think so…as long as I don’t take long gaps/breaks from blogging..When ever I think about my home back in Kerala,India, the first thing that comes to mind is the delicious aroma that fills up the air drifting from the kitchen…And now being a mom to my kids..I want them to remember their home like that too..a home sweet home filled with mouthwatering aroma..Biriyani is one such dish that during its preparation fills the air with MAGIC..which automatically brings everyone to the kitchen..So I make it a point to prepare Biriyani once a week..That has been like that ever since I have been a mom..And my family shares that special love towards Biriyani…

Today my post is of a Vegetable Biriyani..I prepared it during the Lent Season (Easter lent)…It was so delicious..with the goodness of vegetables.The kind of vegetables you want to include in this Biriyani entirely depends on you..Check it out.

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Ingredients:

  • Basmati Rice – 2 cups
  • Ghee  – 3 tbsp.
  • Cinnamon – 2 one inch sticks
  • Cardamoms – 3
  • Cloves – 3
  • Water – 3 ½ cups.
  • Salt to taste.

For the Vegetable gravy:

  • Carrots – 1 medium chopped.
  • Potatoes – 1 medium potato cubed.
  • French Beans – ½ cup.
  • Onion – 1 medium sliced.
  • Red chilli powder – 1/2 tsp.
  • Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp.
  • Coriander powder – 2 tsp.
  • Garam masala – 2 tsp.
  • Ginger garlic paste – 2 tbsp.
  • Yoghurt –  2 tbsp
  • Water – ¼ cup
  • Salt to taste.
  • Oil – 3 tbsp.

To grind:

  • Mint leaves – a handful
  • Coriander leaves – a handful.
  • Raisins – half a handful
  • Cashewnuts – 10
For layering & garnishing:
 raisins – 1/2 cup
 cashew nuts – 1/2 cup
1 medium size big onion, thinly sliced
Caramalised Onions – 1 cup
finely chopped fresh coriander leaves – 1/2 cup
A pinch of saffron
2tbsp warm milk

Method :

  1. Wash and soak the rice for 30 minutes.Drain the water and  keep aside.
  2. In a pressure cooker,heat ghee.To this add cinnamon,cardamom and cloves and wait till they emit an aroma(less than a minute).
  3. Now add the soaked and drained rice and saute .Now add 1 ½ cups of water and salt and pressure cook for 3 whistles and wait till the pressure releases.Open the lid and fluff the rice gently with a fork and leave aside.
  4. Grind the ingredients under “To grind” and keep aside.
  5. Heat oil in a pan.Saute onions till soft.Now add the ground paste and sauté till the raw aroma disappears.To this add chillipowder,Turmeric powder,coriander powder and garam masala powder and sauté well.Now add the yoghurt(Lower the flame).To this add the ¼ th cup of water and salt.Simmer for a minute and keep aside.
Layering and Dum
Grease your Biriyani pot with some ghee. Randomly place some  vegetables along with gravy along in the bottom of the dish; then spread some cooked rice, some fried nuts, fried raisins, caramalised onions and finely chopped coriander leaves,  and also a few drops of saffron milk. Repeat this layering process for the remaining rice.Place lid and and seal the edges with wheat dough. Place the dish on the hot iron tawa for 2mins and then reduce and cook for 20mins. Turn off heat and keep it aside for 15 mins before serving.
Conventional Oven Method:
Preheat the oven to 350F. Close the oven safe dish with aluminum foil and bake for 20-30 minutes.
Transfer directly to the serving plate. (Do not mix the gravy and rice). Garnish with fried onions, nuts and raisins.Serve with Salad.

GOBI 65 | CAULIFLOWER 65

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Hello everybody..I am back after quite a long break..by break i meant gap J and not break…Life keeps us so busy..we don’t get time…Recently to see one of my friend’s whatsapp status..It was like this..”Live life like it was your last day ever”..It touched me a great deal..I mean what if it was my last day..?Cant tell what happens next in the present day world..guys..am i sounding psychonic J..well here goes..today my post is of a snack..or you can use it as a starter too..I have made it either ways.Its Gobi 65 or Cauliflower 65..Its quite easy to make and very delicious.Check it out.

Ingredients:

  • Cauliflower – 1 medium
  • Corn Flour – 6 tbsp.
  • Yoghurt – 3 tbsp.
  • Baking soda – 2 pinch.
  • Kashmiri chilli powder – 1 ½ tsp.
  • Salt
  • Water to form the batter
  • Oil for deep frying.
  • Curry leaves.

Method:

  1. Cut the Cauliflower into small florets and keep in a bowl.Boil some water in another sauce pan.Pour this hot boiling water into the bowl containing the cauliflower florets.Let it sit for 1 minute.Then drain away all the water and keep aside.
  2. Now in another bowl,combine cornflour,yoghurt,baking soda,Kashmiri chilli powder and salt and a little water to form a batter.The batter should not be very loose and should not be very thick either.Just medium consistency.
  3. Now heat oil to deep fry in a pan.Dip and deep fry the florets until golden brown and crisp in medium flame.Add a sprig of curry leaves while frying each batch.It imparts a beautiful aroma to the florets.Drain on a kitchen tissue and serve hot with a cup of tea and Enjoy!

Pumpkin Muffins with Vanilla Glaze

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Recently i saw a lot of pumpkins at the maket…So I got some fo myself and made these muffins..I tell you they are super delicious and quite irresistable..And they disappeared within the wink of an eye..

Ingredients:

  • All purpose Flour – 2 cups.
  • Baking Powder – 1 tbsp.
  • Powdered Cinnamon – 1 tsp.
  • Salt – 1/2 tsp.
  • Eggs (large ones) – 2 (Room Temperature)
  • Milk – 1 cup.
  • Brown Sugar – 1 cup.
  • Pumpkin Puree – 1 cup.
  • Oil – 1/4 cup.

For the vanilla glaze:

  • Powdered Sugar – 1 cup.
  • Milk – 2 1/2 tbsp
  • Vanilla essence – 1/2 tsp

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 200degree C and line the Muffin tray with the muffin liners.
  2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, Powdered cinnamon and salt and keep it  aside.
  3. In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, brown sugar, pumpkin puree and oil. It’s best to add one ingredient one at a  time, whisking after each addition.
  4. Now pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Combine well,but do not overmix.
  5. Pour into the Muffin cups till its 3/4 th level.
  6. Bake the muffins for 15-20 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool  before glazing.
  7. In a small bowl, stir together the glaze ingredients under “For the vanilla glaze”. Transfer the mixture to a small pastry bag (I used a ziploc bag with the corner snipped off :) ). Glaze as desired.Enjoy!!!