|Burmese Garlic Noodles|
Sunday, August 19, 2018
Fresh garlic was used up front with sliced onions and browned, and minced chicken. Garlic oil was used as a garnish along with deep fried garlic. Half a head of shredded iceberg lettuce, fish sauce and toasted chickpea flour were some of the other ingredients in this dish.
Sunday, July 29, 2018
|Banana Nut Bread|
Some ingredients in this recipe are more important than others. For example, I read somewhere that one teaspoon of baking soda (rather than half a teaspoon) produces a darker bread. Also, the recipe calls for a cup of white sugar, but I prefer using dark brown sugar which I believe helps give it a darker appearance.
|The First Slice for Tasting|
The original recipe called for three-quarters of a cup of Crisco oil, which I switched to a cup of melted, unsalted butter which is more to my taste. Another change I make is to grease the pan with Pam butter flavoured spray and white granulated sugar in place of flour. The sugar caramelizes during baking and produces a sweeter crust.
|There can never be too many nuts|
|After resting overnight|
Best of all, this entire recipe can be prepared in one bowl by combining all the wet ingredients first and then sifting the flour and other dry ingredients directly into the mixing bowl and folding everything together with the help of a spatula.
Thursday, July 26, 2018
A school-mate with whom we reconnected as an alumni group on Whatsapp vacationed here with her son, who lives less than five miles away. It turns out her husband was born and spent his childhood in Pegu, Burma. It was an enormous pleasure to have them over for a Khaukswe meal and I also made Kyauk Kyaw, a coconut jelly, for dessert.
|Coconut Chicken Soup|
There are three parts to the khaukswe recipe of which the soup is the most complex. However, most of the components for this dish are available on supermarket shelves which makes life so much simpler. No longer do we have to scrape the meat out of the coconut and extract the milk, because coconut milk is now available in cans. Deep fried onions or shallots are imported from Holland, and deep fried garlic from Thailand.
The third and final component are the garnishes, which clockwise from top left corner comprise lime wedges, minced cilantro, chopped boiled eggs, deep fried onions/shallots, sliced fresh onions, minced green onions, fried rice noodles, and toasted chickpea powder. Off to the side are chili-garlic oil and toasted chili flakes, not pictured here.
Thursday, July 19, 2018
I like to use Italian meatballs from the freezer section of our supermarket unless I'm making an Indian dish. Italian meatballs served my purpose today. The other semi-homemade ingredient in this dish is Cream of Mushroom soup. If you prefer to make your own, a recipe is provided below.
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
|Kofta Alu Biryani|
After our grandchildren arrived, I was re-introduced to meatballs and spaghetti, so our freezer is always stocked with Italian meatballs. They go from a frozen state to soft and bouncy balls by simmering in hot, chicken stock for 10 minutes. After draining, the remaining stock is reserved for cooking the rice.
Whole baby potatoes are a must for this biryani, but I've also used chunks of russet/baking potatoes. The other necessary ingredient is Shan's Pulao/Biryani spice mix. This is available in Indian markets and there's no way I could reproduce the combination of spices in my kitchen.
Thursday, July 05, 2018
A friend suggested that a couple drops of almond extract pumps up the action, but that was after I'd made them, so I'm adding it as an optional ingredient. It's important to line the cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silpat baking mat to avoid a sticky mess.
Remember that evaporated milk and condensed milk are not interchangeable. Evaporated milk is unsweetened and not as thick as condensed milk; look for condensed milk when shopping for this recipe.
Store leftover macaroons in Ziploc bags in the refrigerator or freezer. They travel well and are suitable for picnics, potlucks or as a special treat in lunch bags. They're moist, chewy and totally satisfying!
Friday, June 29, 2018
When cooked, eggplants soften turning creamy in the center. Greek yogurt combined with coconut milk makes a smooth and creamy sauce made even more delicious with a pungent touch of mustard paste and tang that is provided by the tomatoes. Green chilies serve to spice up this dish so use as much as you can handle.
If eggplants are not your thing, substitute them for thick slices of tofu or fish (for non-vegetarians), and use this same sauce to mound over a hot and steamy bed of rice. It makes for a delicious and satisfying meal that is hard to forget!
Wednesday, June 27, 2018
Butter chicken goes well with hot rice or chapatis.
Sunday, June 17, 2018
|Green Beans Shorshe Bata|
A super speedy alternative to making mustard paste at home is to use hot mustard powder dissolved in water that is served in Chinese restaurants. The traditional method is to soak black mustard seeds in water overnight and grind it to a smooth paste the next day.
These green beans were blanched in boiling water for 2 minutes, then stir-fried with diced potatoes and mustard sauce. Mustard powder needs to dissolve in water and set aside for at least 15 minutes to achieve maximum pungency. It's an easy side dish to serve with steamed rice or chapatis/tortillas.
|2018 Father's Day Dinner|
Clockwise from top left:
Easy Tilapia & Cauliflower in Coconut Gravy
Masur Dal with Pickled Radish
Ghoogni - Chickpeas in Cream Sauce
Saturday, June 09, 2018
|Pumpkin Friendship Bread|
The first 3 or 4 times of making this yeasty batter, I was able to find enough friends and neighbours willing to try it, but later I just froze the bags and used them up one at a time to make different flavours of friendship bread. The starter batter freezes indefinitely, so it's easy to make these sweet breads at a moment's notice.
There's always a can of pumpkin puree in the pantry after Thanksgiving. Following the recipe for Banana Walnut Friendship Bread and using a can of pumpkin puree in place of mashed bananas, produces a lovely bread without using a store-bought pumpkin bread mix.
Enjoy this bread for breakfast the day after Thanksgiving.
Thursday, May 31, 2018
|Phool Kopir Ghonto|
I first had Phool Kopir Ghonto at my sister's place. She follows a vegetarian diet one day a week and has a amazing repertoire of vegetarian dishes. This dish has stuck in my memory and even though I haven't followed her recipe exactly, it tasted wonderful!
Friday, May 25, 2018
|Chin Paung Chicken|
A touch of gongura pickle, available in Indian markets, gives this dish a punch of added flavour. Gongura is the South Indian name for roselle leaves.
Wednesday, May 23, 2018
|Astho Kalai Dal|
The lentils are soaked for half an hour and pressure cooked with onions, ginger and a variety of spices. In spite of using only half a stick of butter, these lentils were creamy and delicious. They go well with hot, steamed rice or with a variety of Indian breads.
Saturday, May 12, 2018
|Clockwise from top left|
Ohno Khauk Swe in the Bowl
|Dimer Dhokar Dalna|
Dhoka, which means fake or deceptive in Bengali, refers to the vegetarian substitute for meat served on auspicious occasions. Dhokar Dalna is generally made with lentil cakes in gravy. The lentil cake method is tedious and time-consuming requiring soaking the lentils overnight, blending them the next day and cooking the paste until all liquid evaporates, then cutting the cake in cubes and frying the cubes until browned. In the process, a lot of oil is used and a lot of effort expended.
Dimer Dhoka is much simpler to make, although it would not be considered a vegetarian dish. It doesn't require as much preparation and uses a lot less oil.
Thursday, May 10, 2018
This meatball stroganoff was popular when our own boys were growing up and it was delegated to hubby to make the meatballs from scratch. The aroma of garlicky mushrooms and browning meatballs simmering in mushroom soup and sour cream would cause neighbours to drop by for a taste test. But that was many moons ago and became a distant memory until today.
I hope Grand-Boy #2 likes it as much as I do.
Wednesday, May 09, 2018
|Panch Mishali Tarkari|
Coconut milk makes it extra special by imparting a creamy quality to the vegetables.
Friday, May 04, 2018
I have blogged about a few of these ways - Fish Head Pilaf, Squash with Fish Head and Bottle Gourd with Fish Heads. Toasted mung bean lentils serves as a creamy base for fish heads. The whole head is pan-fried to a golden brown crisp before immersing in the lentils to finish cooking.
Served with a steaming bowl of Basmati rice, I need nothing more than some peace and quiet so I can focus on removing the bones which is a huge part of enjoying this dish.
Tuesday, May 01, 2018
The videos make it look pretty simple - all that's required is a pressure cooker and the ingredients for Doi Maach or fish cooked in yogurt gravy. The store owner was a friendly soul from Chittagong who was happy to clean and cut the ilish I picked out.
Ilish (the closest to an American fish is Shad) is a fatty fish that's rich in Omega 3 fatty acids. It's taste and aroma when cooked is quite spectacular. I decided to follow the instructions in the video so what we had was Doi Ilish or ilish in yogurt gravy.
Cooking the fish for 1.5 hours under pressure was pretty daunting, but there was no reason to worry because there was plenty of gravy left and it didn't stick to the bottom of the pressure cooker. The secret? To use lots of sliced onions as the first layer and to bring it up to pressure and reduce the heat to its lowest setting then forgetting about it for 1.5 hours.
The videos recommended simmering off the excess gravy for another half an hour after removing the cooker cover, but there was no need to do that because the amount of gravy was perfect! The dish tasted awesome and the best part of this experiment was to watch the hubster/DH eat a whole piece of fish. The bones really did soften, reminiscent of sardines or salmon in the can.
Friday, April 20, 2018
|Toasted Mung Beans with Cauliflower|
This lentil dish is a great side dish to add to any festive meal. Split mung beans are toasted to a golden brown, washed and cooked until soft then combined with stir-fried cauli-florets, ginger paste and garam masala powder. A pinch of sugar and salt to taste season the lentils. It's finally garnished with cilantro, green chilies and of course, ghee.
The sauce is easy to prepare too, because all it requires is for the onions and garlic to be blanched in boiling water and blended with tomatoes, a green chili and ginger, then stir-fried with spices and the potatoes and combined with the eggs.
Thursday, April 19, 2018
|Begun Alu Posto|
White poppy seeds, soaked in boiling water and ground with salt until thick and creamy is best served for lunch because it induces a restful afternoon nap. I love posto stir-fried with any vegetable. Add shrimp to it for boosted flavour and call it a main dish.
Tuesday, April 17, 2018
|Surimi in Black Bean Sauce|
|Louis Kemp Crab Delights|
|Lee Kum Kee Chili Black Bean Sauce|