Thứ Ba, 6 tháng 8, 2013

Peaches and Cream Chamomile Tea Cooler

Sometimes your instinct and reasoning skills line up to tell you something.  A situation in which success should be guaranteed.

You see the way he gets all excited playing with a ball.  You know how energetic he is.  You are extremely aware of his inability to sit still.  Friends and family all said yes, he will love it.  Toddler soccer seemed like the perfect activity for Max.

But it was not.  To say the least.  In his defense, the soccer class was held on a patch of grass immediately adjacent to the big toys on the playground.  Like right there, calling out to him with its siren song of fun and climbing adventures.  A song that he could only hear, apparently, as none of the other tots seemed to be running off to play on it.

At first, everything seemed like it would be perfect.  Hilarious and adorable, with a happy little tot playing with the soccer ball.  But that scene was crushed after all of like thirty seconds (I'm not exaggerating), when he decided he needed to be elsewhere. The two train-shaped toys were especially appealing to his sensibilities.  After using various strategies to get my child back to soccer, I eventually had to admit defeat.  As soon as I would carry him over to the soccer balls he would just dart right back to the playground area.  Futility at its finest.

So that was that.

I was so wrong about his interest in soccer.

But I don't think I am wrong here.  I had a vision, instinct and reasoning, telling me that sweet cream and peaches and chamomile and lemon would come together to make a delicious summery drink.

Sometimes our instincts are wrong.  And sometimes they are spot-on.  Not sure what to make of that situation.

For the chamomile-black tea:
8 regular-sized chamomile tea bags
3 regular-sized black tea bags (I insist on my mom sending me packages of Red Rose brand of tea)
4 cups just-boiled water

4 peeled peaches
2 tablespoons lemon juice
6 tablespoons International Delight Cold Stone Creamery Creamer Sweet Cream Flavor
honey, to taste (depends on the sweetness of your peaches)

To make the chamomile-black tea:  Pour the water over the tea bags.  Steep for 4-6 minutes, remove bags. Cool.

To make the tea cooler:  Pour the tea, peaches, lemon juice, creamer, and honey (if using) in bowl.  Blend everything with an immersion blender (or regular blender) until frothy. Ladle into ice-filled glasses.

Tags:Peaches,Cream,Chamomile,Tea Cooler

Thứ Hai, 5 tháng 8, 2013

I Just Can’t Get Enough

There are some foods, some dishes, that I feel I could eat to infinity - dishes where I lose all self control.  Or at least, I don’t want to stop eating, and making myself put on the brakes requires a great deal of discipline. Usually salty crunchy things fall into that category; for instance, I could eat Doritos until I turn orange, but the other foods that put me in a state of compulsive gorging followed by a state of gleeful shame are less obvious. These foods may include, but are not limited to, mashed potatoes, spaghetti carbonara, uni (Well, I’ve never actually had the opportunity to eat my body weight in uni. I’m guessing I’d get my fill faster than I think), chicken fricassee, sausage biscuits, my mom’s cream of mushroom soup (I could drink it like a milkshake), pimiento cheese, tomato sandwiches, burrata, buttermilk pie, Cadbury Creme Eggs (made myself sick eating four in a row) and vichyssoise (made myself sick on that one, too), and pan gravy. I can power down some gravy. And I don’t need it to be on anything, either.

Some of these foods come from my childhood, but just as many don’t at all. Some are sweet and some are salty, some are solid and some are liquid. I don’t see a particular profile or pattern in them at all. That’s what is so interesting about all of us. And what’s so fascinating about food.

Recently, like a bolt of lightning, a dish zapped into my head from my childhood. It was from the era of my mom’s ‘experimental and/or ethnic food phase’ - I’d say this was the late 1980s. We called it Anuradha Rice. I remember exactly what it tasted and looked like, but I couldn’t recall its story or what the recipe was at all. So I called Mom.

When she used to work at an art gallery back in Richmond, she had a co-worker that had recently moved, with her husband, from India. Her name was Anuradha. My mom, Harland and Leslie - all Anderson Gallery people - were all going through this ‘experimental and/or ethnic food phase’ together and thought it would be really great to learn about some of Anuradha’s favorite dishes from home and how to prepare them here. Or rather, how to prepare them in Richmond, Virginia.

I don’t know what, if any, other dishes came out of these cooking classes, but I do know that one in particular stuck in our kitchen. It was a rice dish with some sort of yogurty-ness on top. No one ever found out the actual name for this dish, if it had one, so it has always been Anuradha Rice. My mom, Harland and I ate it all the time, especially in the warm months. It seems like it would be a side dish but it was our meal. And I tell you what, I could have eaten a mountain of it.

After finding out about the dish, and a loose version of how to prepare it, I set to finding the ingredients so I could go about bringing Anuradha Rice into my house, here in LA. When I was searching for the mustard seeds, I was chatting on the phone with Heather. I told her I “was trying to make a rice dish that mom used to m...” At which point she cut me off and stated, “Anuradha Rice!” That shows you how much of a staple it was back then.

I’ve made it twice in the past few days, both versions came out perfectly. The main reason for that is it is a breeze to make. Not only is it a cinch, but the ingredients are easy to find and inexpensive. It’s a bright, fresh, clean, velvety and incredibly satisfying dish. The simplicity of the ingredients and the way they marry perfectly together is uncanny. The smooth, cool yogurt with little crunches of cucumber on top of the warm, soft rice with the teeny-tiiny pops of the mustard seeds make for an eye opening journey in temperatures and textures. My mom came over to visit today and is literally eating a bowl of it while I type this.

So, I recently noticed that I have a lot of new readers of late, and I would love to get to know y’all. I was thinking it would be fun to get some dialogue going between us. After going through my brain and digging up all of those edibles I just can’t get enough of, it made me exceedingly curious to find out what everyone else’s may be. So, please, leave me a list of yours in the comment section. And who knows I may have to try them out to see if they get tacked on to my list. Because, really, all I need is one more thing I just can’t stop eating!

Anuradha Rice

Serves 4 as an entree
Serves 6 as a side dish


For rice:
2 cups Basmati rice, cooked and cooled to room temperature
1 ½ tablespoon mustard seeds
1 ½ teaspoon turmeric
1 tablespoon oil or ghee

For yogurt:
2 1/2 cups plain yogurt
¾ cup red onion, diced
1 large (or 2 medium) ripe tomato, chopped
*1 cup cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 large clove garlic, minced
½ cup cilantro, chopped
Salt & pepper to taste


*Toss chopped cucumber in a small bowl with ½ teaspoon of kosher salt, and let sit 10 minutes. This is to remove excess water from cucumber.

Place all ingredients for yogurt mixture in bowl and mix well. Set aside in refrigerator.

Heat oil (or ghee) in wok or large cast iron skillet. Add mustard seeds and cook on medium-high until they begin to pop. Be careful not to get hit in the eyeball by hot, oily, popping mustard seeds. Cook until a few of the seeds have popped, but don’t worry about popping them all.

Add the cooked and cooled rice, add turmeric and stir well. Once rice is mixed well with the oil and mustard seeds, and heated through with the littlest bit of crisp remove from heat.

Portion rice on to plates and top with a generous amount of the yogurt mixture and serve.

Karavalli Fish Fry

This is a recipe from coastal Karnataka amazing recipe the fish is perfectly spiced there is no over powering tastes its soft and flaky crisp oh my so yum...

Please watch recipe demo video...

250 Grams Fish Fillet 
1 Whole Lime Juice
1/4 Tsp Turmeric Powder
1 Tbsp Pepper Powder
1 Tbsp Ginger Garlic Paste
5 to 6 Green Chillies
3 Sprigs Coriander leaves
1/2 Cup Semolina
Salt as per taste
Oil for frying

Fish Fillets are available at Auchan hyper market, MG 1, Metro Bangalore
Marinate Fish:
  • In a mixer jar add chilly coriander ginger garlic paste turmeric and salt grind to a smooth paste do not add water while grinding if needed add lime juice.
  • Cut the fish fillets into cubes wash thrice drain excess water pat dry.
  • Add the prepared masala with lime juice in a mixing bowl add the fish pieces to the marinate and mix well cover and refrigerate for a hours time. 
  • Spread semolina in a plate.
  • Heat oil in a wok on medium flame.
  • Mix the marinated fish once more before dipping in semolina.
  • Dip the fish in semolina and tap of excess fry the fish in hot oil.
  • Gently flip the fish and fry till golden color drain oil and serve with lime wedges and onion...Enjoy...:) 

Thứ Bảy, 3 tháng 8, 2013

The Road Taken

I started writing this post over a month ago. Since then I have started and stopped quite a few times. Then I just stopped. And stared. Nothing. Then I started again, but didn't know where to take it. I wasn't sure why. Normally once I start something, anything, I stay right with it until I finish. But this one is different. Change is afoot.

Like many writers, I often grapple with how much, or how little, to expose about myself here. To you. I like to talk, I like to tell stories, I like to share. It helps me process. It helps me see. I used to be religious about writing in my journals, almost excessively some days. In a sense, this has become my journal. The big difference is there is now an audience. An audience with reactions I cannot gauge while I 'talk'. For the most part I keep things on the lighter side, but I assure you that this voice is mine and mine alone. If you met me, that would be clear within moments. This voice is more disciplined, however, and part of an identity I am able to control.

Here I tell you about me, but within the framework of food and within the realm of my kitchen, or, perhaps, someone else's kitchen. I will tell you about Fred, or Besito, or anecdotes about any number of members of my family and certainly friends that come in and out of the spotlight at any particular time. And from all of that, and the years we've known one another, I can imagine you have gleaned quite a bit about me.

I have been hinting about some big news and I'm finally ready to tell you about it. At the end of September, after twelve years in the City of Angels I will be moving back home. And by home I mean Richmond, Virginia. I will not be alone, however. My love, Fred and our pups, Besito, Eduardo and our newest addition, Byron, will all be moving together. Our little family is going to join my Richmond family and the horizon is enormous.

I am not sure if you knew this, because I know I've never told you, but I have owned a dog walking business for the past decade. It has been quite successful and very good to me. This business has been the most solid, consistent, dependable and reliable thing I have known during my life in Los Angeles.

So, at almost forty years old, I am selling my business and am moving clear across the country. To do what? I'm not entirely certain, but the idea is a lot more of this. Writing. Cooking. Eating. Food. Recipes. Pictures. With Fred.

And there you have it.

I feel a little bit naked now. But good naked.

And relieved.
One very, very fun and exciting part of all of this is the actual journey. We will be driving and taking our time. Specifically, this will be a culinary journey from California to Virginia with a huge focus on the South. In the cities where we don't know people, we hope to rely on folks we know via social media to assist us in finding our next meal, or interview, or as Fred wants to do, a place for us to cook with locals; both home and professional chefs, and in both homes and restaurants. Part of the thrill of our cross country trip is the serendipity involved. We know that we will have food adventure and discovery that we are not even aware of at this moment. The best part is that we will be documenting everything as we go along.

I hope all of you get involved. Tell us where to go and what to eat. Better yet, if our paths cross, let us meet! And cook! And eat! Let's all do this together, shall we?

And, OMG, what should our hashtag be?!

In honor of this post I thought long and hard about what dish to share with y'all. Fred suggested I make something I've never made before, in the spirit of the unknown road ahead (very Robert Frost of him). I wanted to do something that represents what is happening with food here in LA then and now, so to speak, and food that signifies where I'm from and where I'm going: The South.

I settled on what I will call a Low Country Benedict: fried green tomatoes with Smithfield ham, poached eggs and a pimiento cheese hollandaise. Oddly, I have never made fried green tomatoes. And this summer my fecund garden is bursting with tomatoes – red, yellow, orange and green. When I think of eggs Benedict I think of the LA from the eighties, think LA Story and people lingering over coffee, mimosas and bloody marys and fancy, bougie French fare wearing sunglasses, white linen and big hats. That said, southern food is so, so, very, very en vogue here in LA (and everywhere) right now. Think Willie Jane and The Hart and the Hunter's entire menu, , A-Frame's fried chicken picnic, Son of a Gun's pimiento cheese with Ritz crackers,Lucques' annual rib-fest, everyone's deviled eggs, and so on. And perhaps most obviously, fried green tomatoes are, and have been for quite some time, very prominent in the south.

And so without further ado...

Fried Green Tomato Benedict with Smithfield Ham & Pimiento Cheese Hollandaise

Makes 4 servings


4 thin slices of Smithfield ham
2 tablespoons chopped chives, for garnish
4 eggs
2 teaspoons white or rice vinegar
4 large slices of fried green tomatoes
Salt & freshly cracked pepper

Pimiento Cheese Hollandaise

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
4 egg yolks
1 tablespoon lemon juice
4 teaspoons powdered cheddar cheese (found in your standard mac n' cheese package)
1 4 ounce jar of pimientos, chopped
Dash of cayenne or tabasco
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
Salt to taste


Start with the fried green tomatoes. Recipe below. Once they're cooked, keep them in the oven on warm until you're ready to assemble the dish.

Next bring a large saucepan two-thirds-filled with water to a boil, then add the vinegar. Bring the water to a boil again, then lower the heat to a bare simmer.

Make the pimiento cheese hollandaise. Vigorously whisk together egg yolks and lemon juice in a stainless steel bowl until the mixture is thickened and doubled in volume. Place the bowl over a saucepan containing barely simmering water (or use a double boiler); the water should not touch the bottom of the bowl. Continue to whisk rapidly. Be careful not to let the eggs get too hot or they will scramble. Slowly drizzle in the melted butter and continue to whisk until the sauce is thickened and doubled in volume. Remove from heat, whisk in powdered cheese a teaspoon at a time, Worcestershire sauce and cayenne. Stir in the pimientos. Cover and place in a warm spot until ready to use for the eggs Benedict. If the sauce gets too thick, whisk in a few drops of warm water before serving. Salt to taste

Poach the eggs. Here is  an easy method for poaching eggs. Essentially, working one egg at a time, crack an egg into a small bowl and slip into the barely simmering water. Once it begins to solidify, slip in another egg, until you have all four cooking. Turn off the heat, cover the pan, and let sit for 4 minutes. (Remember which egg went in first, you'll want to take it out first.) When it comes time to remove the eggs, gently lift out with a slotted spoon. Note that the timing is a little variable on the eggs, depending on the size of your pan, how much water, how many eggs, and how runny you like them. You might have to experiment a little with your set-up to figure out what you need to do to get the eggs exactly the way you like them.

Gently remove the eggs from the poaching water and set in a bowl. 

To assemble the eggs Benedict, put two fried green tomatoes on each plate and top each with a thin slice of Smithfield ham. You can trim the ham to fit the tomato if you’d like. Put a poached egg on top of the ham, pour hollandaise over. Top with sprinkles of chives and fresh cracked black pepper. Serve at once.

Fried Green Tomatoes


1  large egg, lightly beaten  
1/2 cup  buttermilk
1/2 cup  all-purpose flour, divided
1/2 cup  cornmeal
1 teaspoon  salt
1/2 teaspoon  pepper
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3  medium-size green tomatoes, cut into 1/3-inch slices
Vegetable oil
Bacon drippings
Salt to taste


Combine egg and buttermilk; set aside.

Combine 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, cornmeal, 1 teaspoon salt, red pepper flakes, and pepper in a shallow bowl or pan.
Dredge tomato slices in remaining 1/4 cup flour; dip in egg mixture, and dredge in cornmeal mixture.

Pour oil/bacon dripping to a depth of 1/4 to 1/2 inch in a large cast-iron skillet; heat to 375°. Drop tomatoes, in batches, into hot oil, and cook 2 minutes on each side or until golden. Drain on paper towels or a rack. Sprinkle hot tomatoes with salt.

Masala French Fries

This is an instant side-dish or snack recipe very tasty down side to this recipe it will not remain crisp for longer period of time masala french fries are super when served with any southindian recipe...

Recipe demo video...Subscribe+Like+Share+Follow...

2 Large Potato Chopped into Sticks
4 Tbsp Corn Flour
1 Tbsp Chilly Powder
1/2 Tsp Turmeric Powder
1 Tbsp Garam Masala
Salt as per taste
Oil for frying
  1. Wash the chopped potato thrice place it in a colander and allow the excess water to drip pat it dry and place it in a mixing bowl.
  2. Add chilly powder salt turmeric powder garam masala and corn flour toss the potato to coat with masala if needed sprinkle water to coat the masala.
  3. Heat oil in a wok and drop the masala coated potato into oil fry. place the flame on low to medium flame fry till all sides are crisp drain potato on tissue serve hot with lime wedges ...Enjoy...:)

Thứ Năm, 1 tháng 8, 2013

Pork meatballs with Lemon & Basil

A simple weeknight meal, flavorful but in no way spicy. Variations on this theme is definitely a favorite for me. I very often opt for pork rather than beef - not only is it cheaper, but I often find it much higher in quality.
lemon garlic meatballs with pesto

Eat these with whatever you'd like - we served it with a simple pasta tossed in pesto, with broccoli and tomatoes.

Any leftovers? They will keep well in the fridge, or in the freezer for that matter.

Pork meatballs with Lemon & Basil
serves 4

500 g ground pork
2 garlic cloves
2 shallots
handful fresh basil leaves
zest from 1 lemon
1 egg
3 tbsp breadcrumbs
50 ml milk
salt, black pepper

Finely mince the garlic, basil and shallots, and mix with the lemon, egg, breadcrumbs and milk in a large bowl. Add a little salt and pepper, and the ground pork. Mix well, using your hands. When it's well combined, let it sit in the fridge for half an hour. (Less, if you're in a hurry - but it helps the mixture hold together.)

Shape round meatballs, and flatten slightly. Fry in butter on medium heat until cooked through.


Thứ Tư, 31 tháng 7, 2013

Daring Bakers Challenge – Crackled Loaves with Dutch Crunch Topping

This month’s challenge was to make bread with the Dutch Crunch Topping. The highlight of the challenge is the topping which gives bread its signature ‘crackled’ look when baked.

“Sara and Erica of Baking JDs were our March 2012 Daring Baker hostesses! Sara & Erica challenged us to make Dutch Crunch bread, a delicious sandwich bread with a unique, crunchy topping. Sara and Erica also challenged us to create a one of a kind sandwich with our bread!”

Technically, Dutch Crunch doesn’t refer to the type of bread, but rather the topping that is spread over the bread before baking. In Dutch it’s called Tijgerbrood or “tiger bread” after the tiger-like shell on the bread when it comes out of the oven. The final product has a delightful sweet crunch to it that makes it perfect for a sandwich roll. It’s a common option at sandwich shops all over the Bay Area and is often one of the first breads to run out.

Recipe Source: The recipe for the Dutch Crunch topping came from Rose Levy Beranbaum’s The Bread Bible. The recipes for the breads we’ve suggested came from The Bread Bible and an adaptation of a recipe found on

The main ingredient in the Dutch Crunch Topping is Rice Flour. This flour is a staple in Indian households, more so in South Indian households. So diving into this challenge made it a snap with all the ingredients on hand. 

NOTE: I followed the recipes as they were provided except I added 1/2 tbsp of Hot Sesame Oil to the Dutch Crunch Topping which helped the tops brown up nicely to give the tiger/giraffe effect. 

Preparation time: Dutch Crunch Topping: 15 minutes active time, 15 minutes passive time; Soft White Roll: 20 minutes active time, 2 hours passive time; Brown Rice Bread: less than 1 hour active time; 2-3 hours passive time. 

Equipment required:
Small bowl
2 large bowls, or a large bowl and a stand-mixer bowl
Stand mixer with paddle (or whisk) and dough-hook attachments (optional)
Wooden and regular spoon(s)
Knife or dough cutter/scraper (optional, depending on your recipe)
Bread pan(s) or baking tray(s)
Plastic wrap or something else to cover the dough while it rises
Servings: This recipe should make sufficient topping for two 9x5 loaves (23cmx13cm) or 12 rolls. If you make only 6 rolls in the first soft white roll recipe, you can cut the topping recipe in half.

We’ve provided this recipe first because it is the mandatory aspect of the challenge. Note, however, that you should not prepare the topping until the bread you’ve selected to bake is almost finished rising (~15 minutes from baking). 

2 tablespoons (2 packets) (30 ml) (15 gm/½ oz) active dry yeast
1 cup (240 ml) warm water (105-115º F) (41-46°C)
2 tablespoons (30 ml) (30 gm/1 oz) sugar
2 tablespoons (30 ml) vegetable oil
½ teaspoon (2½ ml) (3 gm) salt
1½ cups (360 ml) (240 gm/8½ oz) rice flour (white or brown; NOT sweet or glutinous rice flour) (increase by 1 cup or more for home-made rice flour)

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and beat with a whisk; beat hard to combine. The consistency should be like stiff royal icing – spreadable, but not too runny. If you pull some up with your whisk, as shown below, it should drip off slowly. Add more water or rice flour as necessary. Let stand 15 minutes.

Soft White Roll
Servings: Six sandwich rolls
This recipe approximates the quintessential white sandwich roll found throughout the Bay Area. The recipe is simple, quick, and addictive.

1 tablespoon (1 packet) (15 ml) (7 gm/ ¼ oz) active dry yeast
¼ cup (60 ml) warm water (105-110º F) (41-43°C) (No need to use a thermometer – it should feel between lukewarm and hot to the touch).
1 cup (240 ml) warm milk (105-110º F) (41-43°C) (We’ve tried both nonfat and 2%, with no noticeable difference)
1½ tablespoons (22½ ml) (20 gm/ ⅔ oz) sugar
2 tablespoons (30 ml) vegetable oil (plus additional olive or vegetable oil for greasing bowl during rising)
1½ teaspoons (7½ ml) (9 gm/⅓ oz) salt
Up to 4 cups (960 ml) (600 gm/21oz) all purpose flour

1. In the bowl of an electric mixer or large mixing bowl, combine yeast, water, milk and sugar. Stir to dissolve and let sit for about 5 minutes (The mixture should start to bubble or foam a bit and smell yeasty).
2. Add in vegetable oil, salt and 2 cups of flour. Using the dough hook attachment or a wooden spoon, mix at medium speed until the dough comes together. (The photo to below is with the first 2 cups of flour added).
3. Add remaining flour a quarter cup at time until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, as shown in the photo below (For us, this usually required an additional 1½ to 2 cups of flour).
4. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 4 minutes, until smooth and elastic.
5. Place in a lightly greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise for 1 hour, or until doubled (or more) in size. 

6. Once the dough has risen, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and divide it into 6 equal portions (if you’d like to make rolls) or 2 equal portions (if you’d like to make a loaf) (using a sharp knife or a dough scraper works well). Shape each into a ball or loaf and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet (try not to handle the dough too much at this point).
7. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 15 minutes while you prepare the topping.
8. Coat the top of each roll or loaf with the topping as described above. While the original recipe recommends letting them stand for 20 minutes after applying the topping, I got better results by putting them directly into the oven.

9. Once you’ve applied the topping, bake in a preheated moderately hot 380ºF/190°C/gas mark 5 for 25-30 minutes, until well browned. Let cool completely on a wire rack before eating.

I used the rolls to make one of our favourite sandwiches, its light and refreshing. Cut the rolls in half, slather with home-made Basil Walnut Pesto, top with sliced cucumbers and tomatoes, season with a little salt and pepper. Top with a light dusting of parmesan and place top half of roll. Nothing fancy or one-of-a-kind, but we are not big on sandwiches and stick to the simple stuff. The Dutch Crunch was super delicious and the roll had a slight chew to it.

Storage & Freezing Instructions/Tips:
Store as you would any bread – in a bread box, a paper bag, or loose plastic wrap. Both varieties suggested are best in the first couple of days. The loaves or rolls can also be frozen in plastic – simply toast to reheat.


Dosai Pizza

After many dosa pizza recipe attempts I finally nailed it mom was totally getting tired with my experiments on a daily basis I did a research on this recipe there are many people who add chutney instead of pizza sauce if sauce is added it goes soggy anyways I'm happy with the overall taste and texture perfect for a sundays brunch...:)
Dosa Pizza Recipe Demo Video do watch and subscribe...:)

1 Shredded Carrot
1/2 Bell Pepper (finely chopped)
1 Onion(finely chopped)
1 Green Chilly(finely chopped)
Few Sprigs of Curry leaves and Coriander (finely chopped)
1/2 Tsp Dry Basil 
Cheese Singles 
Oil for frying
Salt as per taste

  1. In a mixing bowl add all the chopped veggies add salt as per taste and sprinkle basil mix well and reserve.
  2. Heat a tawa on medium flame add 2 ladles of batter in hot pan swirl and prepare a dosa the dosa should be bit thick add 1/2 tsp oil cover and fry the dosa.
  3. Flip the dosa to the other side and add 2 tbsp full of pizza sauce spread it.
  4. Sprinkle on the veggies and spread over the sauce place the cheese singles and cover allow the cheese to melt a bit once done serve it right away...enjoy...:) 

Thứ Ba, 30 tháng 7, 2013

Vietnamese Caramel Ginger Chicken (Ga Kho) Recipe

Vietnamese Caramel Ginger Chicken (Ga Kho) Recipe
If you are like me, you have probably been seduced by popular Vietnamese foods, such as phở and banh mi. The flavors, delicate in the case of the traditional noodle soup (phở) and robust in the instance of the roasted or grilled pork sandwich (banh mi), are always pleasing but rather elusive. During one of our monthly cooking group meetings, we decided to tackle Vietnamese food. One of the members of the group had received a thorough schooling in Vietnamese food from an ex-boyfriend when they visited his family in Vietnam. We learned that Vietnamese food is carefully balanced using five elements: salty (water), spicy (metal), bitter (fire), sour (wood), and sweet (Earth). Each element, in turn, corresponds to one of the body’s organs. We happily spent the afternoon playing around with different combination of these five elements, aptly changing the flavor of each dish by manipulating the balance of the elements. A little bit of fish sauce here, a splash of coconut soda there…I will never look at flavor profiles in the same way.

This dish, with its rich caramel and ginger sauce, epitomizes the principles of Vietnamese cooking. A simple caramel sauce (don’t be nervous – it’s just melted and cooked sugar) blends with pungent fish sauce to produce a sticky, sweet and salty coating for the chicken. As soon as you taste it, you will wonder why the only thing you topped with caramel sauce in the past was ice cream.
For many years, I avoided using fish sauce because of the odor that could only be described as rancid. If you can get past the smell, you will find that the skunk of the cooking world mellows as it is simmered and combined with other flavors. I promise. In fact, I was enamored with the effects of this sauce that I added it to my Crockpot Braised Country-Style Pork Ribs in Tomato & Red Wine Sauce and was rewarded with one of the best tomato sauces to come out of my kitchen.
Heat a large straight-sided skillet over medium heat. Add 1/3 cup granulated sugar. Cook until the sugar starts to melt and turn brown, about 5 minutes.

Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, swirling the pan frequently, until the caramel is bubbling and turns reddish brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and, very carefully, pour in 1/2 cup water. Please be sure to turn your face aside while you do this so you do not get splattered. If the caramel hardens, set the pan over medium-high heat. Stir until the caramel dissolves, then pour it into a heatproof measuring cup or bowl.
With hot water (so the leftover caramel bits don’t seize up on the bottom of the pan), clean and dry the pan. Place the skillet over medium-high heat and heat 3 tablespoons canola oil in the skillet. Add 1/2 cup medium onion, finely chopped, and 1/2 cup peeled ginger (cut into matchsticks). Cook for 1 minute. Add 2 sliced garlic cloves and cook for an additional minute.

With a slotted spoon, remove the onion, ginger, and garlic from the oil and reserve in a bowl.
To the skillet, add 3 pounds bone-in, skinless chicken thighs (well-trimmed of fat) that have been generously seasoned with kosher salt. Cook until the chicken no longer looks raw on the outside, about 2 minutes per side. Yes, the pan will be crowded!

Add the reserved caramel sauce, 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon fish sauce, 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon dried chili flakes. Mix to coat the chicken.

Reduce the heat to medium and cook (the mixture will be simmering briskly) until the chicken is cooked through, turning the chicken every 2 to 3 minutes, about 20 minutes.

Stir in the reserved onions, ginger, and garlic and cook for 2 to 3 additional minutes. Transfer the chicken and cooked aromatics (ginger, etc.) to a serving platter. Thinly slice 3 green onions and use to garnish the chicken. Serve with rice.

Other recipes using a Vietnamese caramel sauce:
Vietnamese Caramel Ginger Chicken (Ga Kho)
Adapted from Fine Cooking Magazine
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
3 tbsp canola oil
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup fresh ginger, peeled, and cut into matchsticks
2 garlic cloves, sliced
3 lb. bone-in, skinless chicken thighs, fat trimmed, generously seasoned with kosher salt
2 tbsp plus 1 tsp fish sauce
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp dried red chile flakes
3 green onions, thinly sliced
Heat a large straight-sided skillet over medium heat and add sugar. Cook until the sugar starts to melt and turn brown, about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, swirling the pan frequently, until the caramel is bubbling and turns reddish brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and, very carefully, pour in water. Please be sure to turn your face aside while you do this so you do not get splattered. If the caramel hardens, set the pan over medium-high heat. Stir until the caramel dissolves, then pour it into a heatproof measuring cup or bowl.
With hot water (so the leftover caramel bits don’t seize up on the bottom of the pan), clean and dry the pan. Place the skillet over medium-high heat and heat canola oil in the skillet. Add onion and ginger. Cook for 1 minute. Add sliced garlic and cook for an additional minute. With a slotted spoon, remove the onion, ginger, and garlic from the oil and reserve in a bowl.
To the skillet, add chicken thighs. Cook until the chicken no longer looks raw on the outside, about 2 minutes per side. Yes, the pan will be crowded! Add the reserved caramel sauce, fish sauce, 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, black pepper, and chili flakes. Mix to coat the chicken. Reduce the heat to medium and cook (the mixture will be simmering briskly) until the chicken is cooked through, turning the chicken every 2 to 3 minutes, about 20 minutes. Stir in the reserved onions, ginger, and garlic and cook for 2 to 3 additional minutes.
Transfer the chicken and cooked aromatics (ginger, etc.) to a serving platter. Thinly slice 3 green onions and use to garnish the chicken. Serve with rice.
Tags:Vietnamese,Caramel,Ginger,Chicke,Ga Kho,Recipe

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Thứ Hai, 29 tháng 7, 2013

Vichyssoise is NOT pronounced Veeshy-Swah

For my 18th birthday – which fell during the summer in between high school graduation and moving off to college – my dad took me to a fancy dinner at a fancy French restaurant in Richmond, Va.; I believe it was called La Petite France. I had wanted to go there for some time. I will never forget that dinner. My dad, a man of few spoken (and even fewer written (sadly, a trait that I in no way inherited )) words, gave me a watch. He knew that I valued any evidence, trinkets, tchotckes, what have you, of his and my mom’s marriage (they divorced when I was 3, but have remained close friends to this day). The watch, he explained, was given to him by my mom before I was born. He had worn it for decades. The back of the watch was inscribed with his initials and the year 1972. He also went on to explain his interest in the concept of time – how our perception of it changes. I didn’t really understand what he meant at the time. But then I remember thinking a year was such a long time, and Summer vacations were always forever away. Now, a year is like a second, a blip.

And that that meal seems like yesterday.

Still waters run deep, eh dad?

That night, among other food firsts, I tasted vichyssoise. I was absolutely blown away. This creamy and rich, yet delicate and subtle chilled soup was like nothing I had ever experienced. I could have had 4 bowls and not been sated. I am not sure if I have ordered vichyssoise out too many times since but I have endeavored to make it numerous times. Each time I do, I share it with whomever is close by and everyone seems to react the way I did when I first tasted it, and how I feel about it to this day. Except I have now learned that this is not a soup to have 4 bowls of. Considering it’s primarily potatoes, milk, heavy cream and butter, it’s best to show a little restraint (learned that the hard way with my last batch).

The culinary origins of vichyssoise, namely whether it is a genuinely French dish or an American innovation, is a subject of debate among culinary historians. Credit for the dish usually goes to Louis Diat, in 1917. Diat was the chef at the Ritz-Carlton in New York City for most of the first half of the 20th century. His inspiration for the soup was his mother’s much heartier potato-leek soup. He found it too hot to eat and poured cold milk into it to make it more palatable. The name is from Vichy, a city near where Diat grew up.

Interestingly, this culinary delight, which seems to have such complexity, is the most simple creation one can imagine. Call it the Cinderella of soups: its humble home cooking transformed into polished restaurant fare. Yes, you can gussy it up but why toy with perfection? I have found no variations that surpass the original but do often play with the garnish. A sprinkling of finely chopped chives tops a true vichyssoise, but I have experimented with fried leeks, a rosette of smoked salmon and torn croutons.

Since 1917 this recipe has remained almost entirely unchanged. If you order it out, you will see almost no chefs trying to put their bells and whistles on it. It is still as cool and soft as it was eight decades ago. And for the record, the aforementioned watch – I cherish it more than almost anything and wear it to this day. And every time I taste a vichyssoise I think of that watch, my dad, my 18th birthday dinner, and how while time does fly, it too stands still.
Loius Diat once prepared 8 portions of his famous soup to be delivered to the Manhattan town house of Sara Delano Roosevelt, Franklin D.’s mother, at her request – and enclosed this recipe (with one or two of my own alterations in parenthesis).

Serves 8
4tbsp. butter
4 leeks, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
5 medium white boiling potatoes (about 2 ¼ pounds), peeled and thinly sliced
2 cups whole milk
2 cups light cream
1 cup heavy cream
2 tbsp. finely chopped chives
1. Heat butter in a large pot over medium-low heat. Add leeks and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft but not browned, about 20 minutes. Add potatoes, 4 cups water (I use chicken stock), and salt to taste and increase heat to high. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are soft, 50-60 minutes.
2. Strain soup through a mesh sieve into a bowl, pressing and scraping the solids with a spoon. Clean pot and return soup to it. Whisk in milk and light cream, bring to a boil over high heat, then remove from heat and let cool. Strain soup through a fine mesh sieve (finer than the first), pressing and scraping it into a bowl with the spoon, leaving behind a thick paste of solids. Discard solids. Stir heavy cream into soup, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until chilled. Season soup with salt to taste.
3. Divide soup between 8 soup bowls and garnish with chives (or fried leeks, torn croutons, or a rosette of smoked salmon).Serve cold.