Thursday, August 29, 2013

Godhi Ladoo / Wheat flour Ladoo - Krishna Janmasthami

 There are very few festivals we Bunts celebrate and Krishna Janmasthami  is one of those.....nothing over the top....few sweets to offer to Lord Krishna....little more flowers than usual....try very hard to be a veggie for one day..... and a reason to get my ethnic wear out.

My mom can cook crazy....but you ask her to make sweets she will act all dumb and all these chores come to me....I have to confess....I can bake a cake....whip up a dessert in minutes but I totally suck at Indian sweets....I just do not get the whole 'one thread consistency' concept...even if you provide me with a candy thermometer, I am sure to fail . I came across this recipe few years back, I was happy to see that I did not have to deal with one thread consistency sugar syrups...I gave it a try and have been making these ladoos ever since and believe me .....these ladoos have not failed me at all. 

Recipe from here
  • 1 1/2 cup Wheat Flour (you can also use besan/gram flour to make besan ladoo)
  • 2 tbsp fine Semolina / sooji
  • 1/2 cup ghee, extra to fry the nuts and raisins 
  • 3/4 cup powder Sugar (powdered granulated sugar not icing sugar)
  • 1 tsp Cardamom powder
  • 2 tbsp Cashew nuts , chopped
  • 1 tbsp Raisins
  • 1 tbsp Almonds.slivered 
  1. Put the wheat flour and semolina into a thick bottom, preferably a non stick pan and dry roast the flour on medium low flame till you get a nice aroma and the flour feels light, do not let it brown. I roasted the flour almost 45 minutes (I know its a long time but its worth it, you can do it for 20 minutes)
  2. Once that is done add the ghee and mix well and transfer into a bowl and let it cool slightly.Meanwhile fry the cashewnuts and raisin in 1 tbsp ghee till the cashew is slightly brown and the raisins have puffed.Add these into the flour and ghee mixture and mix well.Add in the cardamom powder too.
  3. When the mixture is little hot to touch add the powdered sugar and mix well and start making the ladoos while the mixture is still warm.While making the balls press hard each time you roll .You can grease your palm with little ghee before making each ladoo.
  4. When all the ladoos are done garnish with slivered almonds on top.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Baklava Roll - Cheat version

I told more Middle eastern sweet dish to forget the violent story....and come on....Middle eastern theme and no Baklava...that is a crime.

Its a very well know fact that Baklava is made using Phyllo sheets.....and strictly phyllo sheets  and nothing what so ever can replace that......phyllo sheets in Bangalore (close to impossible).......making phyllo sheets at home ( least for someone as lazy as me).....That is exactly why I cheated.....spring roll sheets (I know....1 spring roll sheet is equal 3 phyllo sheets).....but I had to try and I just loved it.....any person who is not familiar with baklava will love this one.....but....if a Middle Eastern walks in....I am running out the door before I get smacked in the face for having the audacity to use spring roll sheets instead for phyllo sheets ....but believe me.....I think this is the closest substitute for phyllo sheets, you certainly won't be disappointed...please do try it out......awesome sweet treat. 

Recipe from here
  • 12 Spring roll sheets or phyllo sheets
  • 1/3 cup Almond ,coarsely ground
  • 1/3 cup Walnuts or cashew nut ,coarsely ground
  • 1/4 cup Coconut powder
  • 1/4 cup Castor Sugar
  • 1/2 cup melted Butter
  • 1 tsp cardamom powder
For Syrup
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Water
  • 1 tsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 tsp Rose water (optional)
  1. Mix ground almond ,walnuts or cashew,coconut powder,castor sugar and cardamom powder in a small bowl and set aside.
  2. Take two spring roll sheets and join the edges so that you have one long sheet.Butter the entire sheet using a brush. 
  3. Sprinkle a tablespoon of ground nuts on the short side of the sheet and roll once,apply butter on the rolled part of the sheet.Roll again and apply butter,now sprinkle another tablespoon of ground nuts and roll, each time you roll keep applying butter on the rolled part of the sheet.
  4. Place the roll in a square 8 inch baking pan, continue the same procedure with rest of the rolls.Using a sharp knife cut the rolls in 18 equal size rolls.
  5. Bake the rolls in a preheated oven at 180 degree C for 30 minutes or till the roll is crispy and brown.
  6. Meanwhile prepare sugar syrup. Combine sugar and water in a vessel and cook till you get one thread consistency.Add lemon juice to stop the syrup from crystallizing.Now add rose water.
  7. Pour the hot syrup over the baked rolls ans let it stand for few minutes.
  8. Garnish with pistachios. 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Umm Ali

Umm Ali or Om Ali is a very simple rustic Middle Eastern (Egypt) dessert which is more or less similar to bread butter pudding.......which has a pretty violent story behind it....This was supposedly made to celebrate the death of Om Ali (who was beaten to death with slippers by her own handmaids)......keeping all the violence aside........Umm Ali is a very yummy buttery dessert......have to make one more Middle eastern sweet dish which does not have a violent past (wait for my next post)

The original recipe asks for cooked puff pastry sheets....but....making puff pastry at way....... I have used croissants (got the idea from Titli Nihaan)....after all croissants are nicely shaped cooked puffed pastry...Right...

Recipe Source:Titli's busy kitchen
  • 4 large Croissants 
  • 800 ml Milk
  • 1/2 cup Almonds ,roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup Raisins
  • 1/2 cup unsalted Pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 170 grams Sugar
  • 1/4 cup grated Coconut
  • 1/2 cup Cream
  • 1tsp Cinnamon powder
  • Brown sugar to sprinkle on top

  1. Mix almonds,pistachios, raisins and 2tbps sugar in a big bowl. Break the croissants into pieces and add to the bowl with nuts and raisins, mix well and transfer into a oven proof dish.
  2. Add 8 tbsp sugar to the milk and bring to boil.Pour hot milk over the croissants and let it stand for few minutes to soak up the milk.
  3. Add remaining sugar to the cream and pour on top of the milk soaked croissants to form the top layer.
  4. Sprinkle cinnamon powder and brown sugar on top.
  5. Baked in a preheated oven at 180 degree C for 20 minutes or till the top browns.
  6. Top with chopped pistachios.
  7. Serve warm or cold.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Shish Tawook

When in of my favorite restaurant was Nadhmi in awesome grill run by a bunch of Lebanese men and they made the best shish tawook ever....served with lip smacking hummus, baba ganoush, tabbouleh and pickled jalapenos........And you know what?...... Lebanese men are very handsome and wonder I went to Nadhmi often.

My shish tawook did not come anywhere close to Nadhmi's but definitely good enough.

Print this recipe
  • 2 Chicken Breasts , cubed
  • 6 cloves garlic ,minced
  • 1/2 tbsp Tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp Tomato ketchup
  • 1tsp Chilli powder or paprika
  • 1/4 cup Yogurt
  • 2 tbsp Lemon juice
  • salt to taste
  • Olive oil
  1. Marinate chicken cubes in garlic,tomato paste,tomato sauce, chilli powder,yogurt, lemon juice and salt for 2 to 4 hours or overnight.
  2. Pierce the marinated chicken cubes into the wooden skewer sticks.
  3. Grill on barbecue and keep basting with olive oil till done or you can also pan fry the chicken or roast in the oven.
  4. Serve with roasted veggies and pita bread.  

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Falafel with Cucumber and Mint dip

Any Middle Eastern feast is incomplete without the very famous vegetarian snack Falafel.....Serve them hot with pita bread...cucumber mint dip...fresh tomatoes....lettuce and sliced end up with the perfect Falafel pita bread sandwich.....

Recipe Source Titli's Busy Kitchen
Print this recipe

  • 200 grams Chickpeas (soaked in water overnight)
  • 4 cloves Garlic,finely chopped
  • 1 small onion , finely chopped
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds (or 2tsp cumin powder)
  • 1 tsp Coriander seeds (or 2 tsp coriander powder)
  • 1/2 cup Coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp Baking soda
  • Salt to taste
  • oil for deep frying
  1. Add the soaked and drained chickpeas into a food processor and blend for few minutes and transfer to a bowl , the chickpea paste should not be too coarse nor too smooth.
  2. Using a motor and pestle grind the coriander and cumin powder into coarse powder. 
  3. Add the finely chopped onion and garlic,salt, cumin powder and coriander powder to the chickpeas and mix well.
  4. Place this mixture in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  5. After 30 minutes ,remove and add baking soda and give a thorough mix.
  6. Place the oil in a frying pan and heat on medium.
  7. Take and tablespoon and a half of the chickpea mix in you hand and form and ball and flatten slightly.
  8. When the oil is hot fry the chickpea balls on medium flame till the falafel turns golden brown in color.
  9. Remove and drain the excess oil in absorbent paper.
  10. Serve the hot falafel with cucumber and mint dip and pita bread.

Cucumber and Mint Dip
  • 1 medium Cucumber
  • 1/4 cup Mint leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves Garlic
  • 200 ml Yogurt
  • Salt to taste
  1. Scrape the cucumber skin, slit and scoop out the seeds and discard.Grate the cucmber.
  2. In a bowl and yogurt and mix till smooth ,grate the garlic into the yogurt,add the grated cucumber,mint and salt and mix well.
  3. Transfer into a bowl and serve with falafel.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Baba Ganoush

Hummus is always followed by Baba ganoush .

Recipe Source
  • 1 medium size Eggplant
  • 3 tbsp Lemon juice(adjust to taste)
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 4 tbsp Tahini sauce
  • salt to taste
  • Olive oil
  • Chilli powder and mint leaf for garnish
  1. Preheat oven at 200 degree c, prick the eggplant with a fork,apply little oil on the skin and place on the wire rack in the preheated oven for 1 hour, remove and place in a bowl and cover with clingfilm and let it cool. Once cool,remove peel the skin and place the eggplant  flesh in a mortar or a blender.(another method is to roast the eggplant on a stove top)
  2. Blend together roasted eggplant flesh,garlic,lemon juice,tahini and salt in a food processor till you get desired consistency (I do not like mine smooth).
  3. Transfer to a serving dish ,garnish with olive oil,chilli powder and mint leaves.
  4. Serve with pita bread.

Monday, August 5, 2013


Hummus is my favorite middle eastern dip......goes well with pita bread.......must try.

Recipe Source:Dede
  • 3 cups Chickpea (cooked)
  • 1/4 cup Yogurt
  • 1/2 cup tahini sauce
  • 2 tbsp Lemon juice (adjust to taste)
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • salt to taste
  • few mint leaves (optional)
  • 1/4 cup Olive oil for garnish

  1. Blend all the ingredients in a blender to a smooth paste ,add little water if the hummus is too thick.
  2. Transfer to a serving plate and garnish with olive oil and cooked chickpeas rolled in chilli powder.
  3. Serve wit pita bread. 
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