Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Scary Halloween Cocktails

Hosting a frightful Halloween party? It is often said that "All Hallows' Eve is one of the nights when the veil between the worlds is thin - and whether you believe in such things or not, those roaming spirits probably believe in you, or at least acknowledge your existence, considering that it used to be their own". There is no doubt that the air feels very different on Halloween, Ho-Ha-Ha-Ha. Scared? Don’t be scared, enjoy the thrill and exotic Halloween Party Menu. Hope you loved my last year’s Halloween recipes. Halloween party is incomplete without creepy cocktails. Serve these cool sips and your party would be a deadly success. Halloween gives us an opportunity to be really creative. So show your creativity through these cocktails. Let’s go for Black Magic Martini and Scary Green Jelly Cocktail. When it comes to Halloween party, these two cocktails, as bad as hell, are always ordered among the top drinks.
Black Magic Martini
2 ounces Vodka,
1 ounce Blue Curacao,
1/2 ounce Raspberry Liqueur,
Lemon twist for garnish (Optional).
Preparation Method:-
1. Pour the ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice.
2. Shake well. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Serve chilled!
Scary Green Jelly Cocktail
1 quart Hot Water,
2 liters Ginger Ale,
2 cups White Sugar,
4 1/2 cups Cold Water,
1 can Pineapple Juice,
2 cans Orange Juice Concentrate,
3 ounce Green Lime Flavored Jelly Mix.
Preparation Method:-
1. In a large saucepan dissolve the gelatin in 1 quart of hot water.  Allow to cool.
2. When gelatin is cool, pour into a large punch bowl, stir in pineapple juice, orange juice concentrate, sugar and 4 1/2 cups cold water.
3. Pour in ginger ale just before serving. Serve chilled!
Have a Deadly Halloween. Ho ha ha ha!

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Celebrate Birthday of Mahatma Gandhi with Milk Peda

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi popularly known as Mahatma Gandhi, was the preeminent leader of Indian independence movement when Britishers ruled India. I admire his quote, "Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony". Happiness has many definitions. For most of us happiness is love, and for me happiness is “Love for Food”. BTW did you know some of the food that Mahatma Gandhi relished includes yogurt, brinjal, radish, beetroot, bottle gourd and fruit juice?

DYK that Mahatma Gandhi was strict vegetarian? Mahatma Gandhi relished simple Indian food such as daal, rice and chappati. Daal, dhal or dal is lentils stew or curry. Hope you enjoyed my Indian recipe cooked with lentils called “Dalma”. Among the desserts, Mahatma Gandhi relished Peda. Peda is traditional Indian milk fudge sweet. So let's celebrate Gandhi Jayanti or birthday of the "Father of the Nation" with delicious Peda.


1 pinch of Saffron,
¾ cup Milk Powder,
4 Green Cardamoms,
1 pinch of Nutmeg Powder,
200 grams Condensed Milk,
½ tablespoon Clarified Butter.

Preparation Method:-

1. Mix condensed milk, milk powder plus clarified butter in a microwave bowl. Blend well and make sure that no lumps are left out. Crush cardamoms in to a fine powder. Discard the peels.
2. Microwave the mixture on high for a minute. Add cardamom powder, nutmeg powder and saffron. Stir this, microwave on high for a minute. Remove and stir again.
3. Microwave for 20 seconds on high, then check. If the mixture looks a bit liquid, microwave it for next 20 seconds. The mixture will thicken automatically.
4. If the mixture still has moisture and is in liquid form, then microwave again on high for 20 seconds.
5. When the mixture becomes warm, shape it into small balls. If the mixture is sticky, apply some oil or clarified butter while shaping into small balls. You can also give them beautiful shape with the help of cookie mould, creating an impression on the top as I have done.
6. On cooling, store these sweets in an airtight box. Refrigerate. Serve the milk pedas/milk fudge sweet when required.
Enjoy birthday of Father of the Nation with milk fudge sweet!

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Diabetic Friendly Chocolate Trifle

It was my grandma’s birthday and I decided to prepare a sweet treat for her. She is diabetic but who says not to consume chocolate while we are watching our sugar intake. She is very fond of desserts just like me. Last time I prepared Diabetic-friendly Chocolate Cheesecake Recipe to cheer her up on this special day. I have something yet special for her this time. She loves cake recipes. Enjoy making rich and moist trifle for your loved ones and bring a huge smile on their face. Whatever ingredients I am using are diabetic friendly. Chocolate lowers cholesterol level. It prevents memory decline. It reduces heart disease risk and also prevents stroke. Cherries on the other hand is booster of Vitamin C and antioxidants. It also helps in reducing bad cholesterol. So let's bake the cake.
3/4 cup Water;
2 cups fat-free Milk;
1 package pitted Cherries;
2 drops of Red Food Coloring;
Sugar-free Chocolate curls to taste;
2 cups thawed Fat-free frozen Whipped Topping;
1 package Chocolate Sugar-free, Low-fat Cake Mix;
1 package Chocolate Sugar-free, Fat-free Instant Pudding Mix.
Preparation Method:-
1. Preheat oven to 375 D.F.
2. Mix cake mix using 3/4 cup water. Bake till cake is done, use knife to check this.
3. The cake mixture should not stick to the knife. Let the cake cool in pan. Remove from pan. Cut into small cubes.
4. Prepare pudding mix using 2 cups of fat-free milk. Chill for at least 40 minutes.
5. Thaw cherries reserving 1/4 cup juice. Mix cherries, food coloring and juice together.
6. Place half of cake cubes in a 3-quart trifle bowl. Spoon half of cherries over cake. Spread 1 cup pudding over cherries, and top with half of whipped topping.
7. Repeat layers. You can also serve in glasses as I have in the same manner with feasible proportion. Garnish with chocolate curls. Cover and chill at least 8 hours.
Celebrate the chocolate treat!

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Vegan Pasta with Pumpkin Sauce and Veggies

Vegetarians are many, Vegans are few. People are turning towards what we call "Veganism". Whatever is derived from animals including dairy, egg, honey and even leather, fur, cosmetics, silk, wool and soaps are abstained by vegans. Let's talk about veganism today. Ellen DeGeneres, the great comedian and host switched her diet to vegan in the year 2008. Her flaunting body has been inspiration for millions. The celeb has read numerous books on diets without meat and animal rights that subsequently encouraged her to turn into vegan. Vegan inculcates in you a total new lifestyle not only relating to the food you take but also to the clothes and accessories you wear.
You can no more use the following:-
  • Leather jackets and shoes
  • Leather purses and wallets
  • Fur coats
  • Woolen cardigans
  • Feather earrings
  • Medicines containing animal products
  • Cosmetics like lotions, perfumes etc. containing animal products
Let’s munch on an exotic Vegan Recipe too. This is Vegan Pasta with Pumpkin Sauce and Veggies
2 cloves Garlic,
1 sliced Onion,
Salt as required,
teaspoon Nutmeg,
1 cup Pumpkin Puree,
8 oz. Buckwheat Pasta,
1 cup Vegetable Broth,
Pinch Cayenne Pepper,
3 tablespoon Olive Oil,
¼ teaspoon Chili Powder,
3 tablespoon Vegan Butter,
100 grams crumbled Tofu,
100 grams chopped French Beans.
Preparation Method:-
  1. Boil pasta till done. This takes 7 minutes. Drain in a colander.
  2. In the meantime, prepare the sauce. Take a skillet. Mince two cloves of garlic. Add to a large skillet along with one tablespoon of vegan butter. Sautee on medium heat for 2 minutes.
  3. Add pumpkin puree plus broth to the skillet. Combine well. Add nutmeg, chili powder, cayenne pepper and black pepper. Let sauce simmer over medium-low. Once boiled, turn off the gas. Set aside.
  4. Take a small wok and add olive oil. In it add onions. When red, add in crumbled tofu and green beans. Cook till done. Keep aside. Once when pasta is done, add two tablespoon of vegan butter to the skillet. Mix well.
  5. Serve pasta on plate. Pour pumpkin sauce over it with added salt if required. Taste the sauce and add salt if needed. Add green beans and tofu stir-fry over the sauce. Enjoy!
Relish your vegan treat!

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Cheers with Beer on Oktoberfest

Oktoberfest, the 16 days beer fest is celebrated in Germany annually, for the honor of Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig's marriage. The vibrant fest stretches from September 19 to October 4, 2015. Let’s revive some facts and yummz.
  • It must not be surprising if I say around 2 million beer gallons is consumed by 6 million people at the fest.
  • Different tents offer different kind of beer.
  • Capacity a tent can accommodate is 10,000 people.
  • The traditional stein costs around $13 (33 Ounces).
  • People with hangover can rest on the beds arranged by the Red Cross society.
  • Best recipes offered on the fest includes:-
  1. Brezn (pretzel)
  2. Wurstl (sausages)
  3. Haxn (pork knuckle)
  4. Hendl (roasted chicken)
  5. Weisswurst (white sausage)
  6. Kaasspotzn (cheese noodles)
  7. Schweinsbraten (roasted pork)
  8. Reiberdatschi (potato pancakes)
  9. Steckerlfisch (grilled fish on stick)
  10. Knodeln (potato/bread dumplings)
  11. Obatzda (spicy cheese-butter concoction)
  12. Sauerkraut or Rotkraut (pickled red cabbage)
Do try my Fried Chicken recipe with Beer Dip. It would pair very well with following Cocktails.
The Eclipse 
Ginger beer,
6 Blueberries,
3 Mint leaves,
4 Strawberries,
1½ oz. Sour Mix,
1½ oz. Tequila.
Preparation Method:-
  1. Muddle raspberries, blueberries, and mint leaves in a cocktail shaker.
  2. Add tequila and sour mix. Shake vigorously and strain into a glass filled with ice. Top with beer. Enjoy!
El Ayudacal
1 Lime zest,
1 bottle Beer,
1½ oz. Lime Juice,
½ oz. Agave Nectar,
Lime wheel for Garnishing.
Preparation Method:-
  1. Combine lime juice, agave nectar, and lime zest in a glass.
  2. Add beer and stir gently. Garnish with a lime wheel. Enjoy!
Dance with Beer!

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Paint the World Red with La Tomatina Festival

The great cultural extravaganza Spanish food fight festival, La Tomatina is here. Hope you enjoyed my last year’s tomato and meat recipe, Meatballs with Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce. The fest gets popular from year to year with the streets of Bunol running blood red with juicy tomato. The festival is welcomed by singing, dancing, parades, fireworks etc.
The festival is complete fun but let's adhere to the rules as well. Just have a look:-
-Bring your goggles to avoid acidic tomato pulp going into the eyes
-Squish tomatoes before throwing on one another such that it does not hurt anyone
-Avoid bottles and other sharp objects
-Girls must wear bikini underneath clothes
-Wear tight and strong shoes.
Let's add some more spice to La Tomatina with Spicy Fire Roasted Tomatoes and Tortellini Soup
1 Clove Garlic,
Salt as required,
6 oz. fresh Tortellini,
1 quart Chicken Broth,
8 leaves chopped Basil,
1 chopped Green Chilly,
10 oz. chopped Spinach,
Black Pepper as required,
2 tablespoons Unsalted Butter,
Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano,
14 oz. canned diced fire Roasted Tomatoes with liquid.
Preparation Method:-
  1. Melt butter in a saucepan. Put over medium-high heat. Add garlic, chillies and saute until fragrant. This takes two minutes. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil.
  2. Now add tortellini and cook halfway for two minutes. Add canned tomatoes and their liquid. Reduce heat to simmer. Cook until the tortellini is soft.
  3. Stir fry spinach and basil in butter for five minutes on simmer. Add this and cheese in soup and cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Serve hot! I love pairing the soup with cheese and garlic bread. What do you pair it with?
Enjoy La Tomatina!

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Munch on Australian Vegemite and Cheese Scrolls

Tea is incomplete without a tasty snack. Whether you want to enjoy evening tea with your soul mate alone by the bedroom window or with crazy bunch of friends, a good coffee/tea with a yet tasty snack is always welcomed by millions. Let’s enjoy something from the land of Australia today. Vegemite and cheese scrolls are all delicious and delight and brings smile even if the budget is tight. Agree or not? The best part of this snack is that it can be popped into office lunch boxes or enjoyed over and again with high tea. Moreover I am very fond of crazy snacks recipes. Let's try the following delight.
Australian Vegemite and Cheese Scrolls
250 ml Milk,
Salt to taste,
Pepper to taste,
Vegemite to taste,
250 grams Self Raising Flour,
30 grams chopped cold Butter,
55 grams grated Swiss Cheese.
Preparation Method:-
1. Preheat the oven to 200 D.C. Grease with butter, a medium sized baking tray.
2. Add flour, butter and seasonings in a food processor blend until it resembles fresh breadcrumbs.
3. Now add milk. Mix until combined. Tip the dough out on a slightly floured bench top. Roll into a 30 x 45 cm rectangle.
4. Spread Vegemite and top with grated cheese generously . Roll into a log. Cut into 2 cm slices. Place onto a greased oven tray.
5. Bake for 18 minutes or until golden. Serve warm or at room temperature with hot tea or coffee.