Wednesday, 26 February 2014

King Cake Recipe and Mardi Gras Festival

All set for the Mardi Gras Festival?? Invite your pals and relatives and offer them fruit cakes, doughnuts and spend quality time. Wanna have more fun?? Participate in the parade and design colorful parade floats. There are special Mardi Gras Parade tickets available for active participation and full fledged enjoyment. The events will boost up the festive mood. You'll love the colorful beads, hats, masks, stuffed toys and much more.

Hope you liked our previous recipe, "Rich Peach Cobbler". Today we'll bring you with the most easy homemade recipe of "Kings Cake", since Mardi Gras Festival is incomplete without it. The simplest of all the cake is a ring of twisted cinnamon roll-style dough. It is topped with icing sugar or cream that is purple, green, and golden in color, denoting the traditional Mardi Gras colors.
Ingredients for Cake:-
2 tablespoons butter,
1 teaspoon vanilla extract,
1/3 cup light brown sugar,
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon,
8 ounce cans reduced-fat crescent rolls,
4 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese,
2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar.


Preparation method for the Cake:-
1. Preheat the oven to 350 D. F. Coat round pizza pan approximately 10-inch with nonstick cooking spray.
2. Separate the crescent rolls at perforations into 16 slices. Place slices around prepared pan with points in center. About halfway down from points, press the seams together.
3. In mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, and vanilla until creamy. Spread on dough in center where seams have been pressed together.
4. In another small bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon with fork until crumbly. Sprinkle over cream cheese. Fold dough points over filling, then fold bottom of triangle over points forming a circular roll like a king cake.
5. Bake 25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool slightly and drizzle with colored Mardi Gras Icing.
Ingredients for Icing:-
1 cup confectioners’ sugar,
1-2 tablespoons skim milk,
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract,
Yellow, green, and purple food color


Preparation method for Icing:-
1. In small bowl, combine all ingredients, except food color. Divide the mixture into three bowls.
2. In first bowl, add a few drops of yellow food coloring. In second bowl, add a few drops of green food coloring. In third bowl, add equal amounts of drops of purple food coloring.
3. Drizzle over baked cake.

Enjoy the cake and the fest!!!

Monday, 24 February 2014

Mardi Gras Festival and Rich Peach Cobbler

The popular festival, Mardi Gras, 2014 is falling on Tuesday, March 4th. Everyone is excited about it and counting down the minutes. Madri gras is accompanied by people wearing masks and shiny, colorful costumes, overturning social conventions, dancing, sports competitions, parades, etc. Madri Gras reflects the French as well as American culture. The name of the festival varies from place to place. This festival is incomplete without the "King Cake". We'll bring you with the mouth watering recipe, this weekend.
The festival is celebrated with great pomp and show in Belgium, Brazil, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Sweden and United States. For now lets try the traditional peach cobbler with ice cream recipe as any festival is incomplete without delicious dessert. Cobbler refers to variety of dishes, chiefly in the United States and United Kingdom. It consists of a fruit filling that is poured into a large baking dish and covered with batter, biscuit, or crispy pie crust. Thereafter it is baked. Let’s have a look.

Ingredients:-

4 cups peeled sliced peaches,
2 cups sugar,
1/2 cup water,
8 tablespoons butter,
1 1/2 cups self-rising flour,
1 1/2 cups milk,
Ground cinnamon, optional.

Preparation Method:-

1. Preheat oven to 350 D. F. Combine the peaches, 1 cup sugar, and water in a saucepan and mix well.
2. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add butter in a baking dish and place it in the oven for melting.
3. Mix the remaining 1 cup sugar, flour, and milk slowly to prevent clumping. Pour mixture over melted butter. Do not stir. Spoon fruit on top, gently pouring in syrup.
4. Sprinkle top with ground cinnamon. Batter will rise to top during the baking process. Bake for 45 minutes.
5. To serve, scoop out and serve with your choice of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. 
Enjoy the festival!! 

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Sweet and Sour Pork with pineapple

Pork is the staple food of various countries. It is rich source of vitamin B1, which is vital for growth and repair of muscles. It has riboflavin that helps to maintain skin and health problems. Vitamin B6, present in pork meat helps in increasing metabolism. Iron, on the other hand, gives you energy. Despite of being sweet and delicious, pineapple is blessed with number of health benefits like boosting up the immunity system. Hence, pineapple is considered more than a delicious tropical-fruit treat. Fresh and crisp bell pepper is a tasty vegetable that can be included in regular part of healthy eating plan. It is low in calories and contains no fat and is a good supply of vitamins and minerals. Soy sauce has strong umami flavor and is used in number of Asian cuisine. So lets try our hands at mouthwatering sweet and sour pork with pineapple.
Ingredients:-

20 ounces pineapple chunks,
1/4 cup vinegar,
2 tablespoons light soy sauce,
1 1/2 teaspoons salt,
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger,
1/2 cup water,
2 pounds boneless pork loin,
1 large diced onion,
1 medium diced green bell pepper,
1 medium diced red bell pepper,
3 tablespoons cornstarch.

Preparation Method:-

1. Drain juice from pineapple and pour juice in a Dutch oven. Add vinegar, soy sauce, salt, ginger, and 1/2 cup water. Stir until smooth.

2. Add pork and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 1 hour, or until meat is tender. Add onion, green pepper, red pepper and pineapple chunks.

3. Simmer 10 minutes longer, or until onion and peppers are just tender. Put cornstarch in a cup and stir in 3 tablespoons water.

4. Stir into pork and juices. Then heat to boiling. Reduce the heat and simmer the sweet and sour pork for 1 minute. Serve sweet and sour pork with rice.
We have lot more yummy yummzzz!!!

Monday, 17 February 2014

The Desert Festival and Dal Baati Churma

The Desert Festival is one of the major festivals celebrated in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan (India). It falls in the month of January or February. This year the festival was held from 12th February to 14th February. The zest of the festival is to bring out rich culture and heritage of the beautiful state, Rajasthan. The major attractions of the fest are Rajasthani folk dance, snake charmers, puppeteers, acrobats, camel dance, polo, camel race and other local performances. The dance and drama reflects heroism, romance and tragedy of the folk heroes. As any festival is incomplete without food, Rajasthani food is incomplete without the traditional dal baati churma, the perfect Indian food. Panchmel dal is the grams curry. Baatis are small, flaky, round breads that are baked over firewood. Churma is the traditional dessert of Rajasthani. Here is the sumptuous recipe to delight you. 
Ingredients:- 
 
For the Panchmel Dal:-
1/3 cup split Bengal gram,
1/3 cup pigeon peas gram,
1/3 cup split green gram,
1 tbsp split black lentils,
1 tbsp whole green gram,
3 tsp chilli powder,
1/4 tsp turmeric powder,
1 tsp coriander powder,
1/2 tsp hot spice,
3 cloves,
2 bay leaves,
1 tsp cumin seeds,
2 green chillies,
1 pinch of asafoetida,
2 tsp dried mango powder,
2 tsp tamarind pulp,
3 tbsp clarified butter,
salt to taste


For Baatis (10):-
1 cup whole wheat flour,
1/2 cup semolina,
2 tbsp Bengal gram flour,
8 tbsp milk,
4 tbsp melted clarified butter,
salt to taste
Preparation method:-
 
For the panchmel dal:-
1. Clean and wash the dals (grams and lentils) and add 4 cups of water. Pressure cook for 3 whistles or till the dal is cooked.
2. In a bowl, combine the chilli powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, hot spice with 3 tablespoons of water and mix well. Keep aside.
3. Heat the clarified butter in a pan and add the cloves, bay leaves, cumin seeds, green chillies and asafoetida.
4. When the cumin seeds crackle, add the prepared masala paste and saute for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the cooked dals, amchur, tamarind pulp and salt and simmer for 7 minutes.
5. Adjust the consistency of the dal before serving and if required by adding some boiled water.

For the baatis:-
1. Mix all the ingredients and knead into a firm dough. Knead well for 7 minutes. Divide the dough into 10 equal portions and shape each portion into an even sized round.
3. Flatten the rounds lightly using your thumb to make an indentation in the centre of the baati. Boil water in a broad vessel and drop the baatis in the boiling water. Cook for 20 minutes over a high flame.
4. When the baatis are done, drain and keep aside. Heat a gas tandoor (Indian oven) and put the baatis on the grill of the tandoor. Cook them on a medium flame for 25 minutes.
5. Cooking the baatis over a medium flame will ensure that the baatis are cooked on the insides also. Arrange the baatis on a serving plate, break each baati into two pieces and pour melted clarified butter on the baatis.


For Churma:-
2 cups whole wheat flour,
4 tablespoons semolina,
1 cup clarified butter,
3/4 cup powdered sugar,
1/4 teaspoon green cardamom powder,
10 chopped cashewnuts,
10 chopped almonds,
10 chopped raisins
Milk as required


Preparation method:-
1. Mix flour and semolina in a bowl. Add half cup of melted clarified butter and mix well. Add milk as required and knead into a stiff dough.
2. Divide the dough into twelve lemon sized balls. Heat sufficient clarified butter in a wok and deep-fry the balls on medium heat, till they are well done.
3. Drain and place on an absorbent paper and cool. Coarsely grind the wheat balls in a mixer. Add powdered sugar, cardamom powder, cashew nuts, almonds and raisins and mix.
4. Serve churma with daal baati.

Enjoy the Desert Festival..

Friday, 14 February 2014

My Heart Recipes - Happy Valentine’s Day

Everything hearty...Check it out!!!

For All Veggies

Jalapeno Pepper, Onion and Tomato Extra Cheese Pizza
It is often said, 'there's no better feeling in the world than a warm pizza box on your lap'. This time close your love’s eyes and place this warm pizza on his lap. Your love will be more than surprised to see the pizza of heart shape. The shape requires no such creativity, it can be done with simple knife. Top with oregano and chilli tomato sauce.


Fried Potatoes Heart-shaped Chips
Heart shape cutter is readily available in the market. Thinly slice the potatoes. Make a mixture of cornflour, salt and ground pepper and water. Coat the chips with the mixture. Delicious heart chips are ready in no time. Fry them in batches, topping with your favorite sauce. Yummzzzz!!!


Heart Shape Vegetarian Roasted Mushroom Lasagna
This recipe is a bit time consuming but a very small sacrifice to see a smile on you love’s face. This is rich lasagna entree with its layers of rosemary-roasted mushrooms, nutty fontina cheese plus sweet Parmesan cream sauce. For garnishing, saute some sliced mushrooms in butter with a pinch of rosemary leaves and scatter over the top of the lasagna. Tempting!!!
Meaty Fun

Chicken Nuggets
Ready made chicken nuggets are available in the market, especially the one with heart shape. It’s a good idea to serve on auspicious occasion of Valentine’s day. Just deep fry them for real quick finger food and spend some quality time with your date.


Minced-Lamb Meatloaf
Lamb meat is very tender. Adding some mint and garlic, ginger flavor would enhance the taste. Minced meat loaf can be pre-prepared, we can bake the batches in advance. We just require warming them up during our date and spend maximum time with our soul-mate.


Pan-Fried Beef Steak
Cooking steak on the grill and pan frying it are similar. Both use dry heat technology, which creates a delicious brown crust on the surface of the meat, and intensifies its flavor through the process of evaporation. When you pan fry steak, there are three ways to season it. These are you can rub spices on it, marinate it in curd, or make a sauce, plum sauce or strawberry or any of your choice and add onto it.
Some Salad, Some Soup

Beeting Hearts Salad
Adorable and tasty heart shaped beet with goat cheese, chive mousse, greens will make a real hearty salad for your love and make your heartbeat ask for more of it. Hearty, healthy and definitely enticing...


Heart Beet Soup
With added creaminess and a lovely presentation, you can swirl this vibrantly colored beet soup with sour cream. Even without the additional decoration, the bright and vibrant color of this soup will make the candle light dinner, show-stopper.


Hearty Croutons Soup
This soup can be made in advance, then reheated and garnished. The rich, creamy broccoli soup can be served with heart shape croutons to keep up the flavor of the day.
Seafood Yummzz..

Roasted Shrimp and Tomato with greens
We can roast, clean shrimp or prawns, as per choice. Use two shrimps at a time with a piece of tomato in between as shown in the image. Squeeze fresh lemon over it with seasoned salt and pepper. Serve with greens. Enjoy!


Smoked Salmon and Crispy Potato with Sour Cream
Salmon can be smoked with spices and lemon. Potatoes can be partially fried. Both can be baked. We can mash and use them both for baking. We can dice the two and bake them as well. Smoked Salmon and Crispy Potato with Sour Cream is the perfect combo to be served as heavy evening snacks.


Heart-shape Tuna Pie
Tuna can be baked or par boiled and then encased in special pastry of heart shapes and then warmed. This can be served with wine, making a heavy snacks for your Valentine to enrich the taste of the date.

So ready for the date??

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Valentine’s Day Special - Chocolate Layer Cake

All you need is love but a little chocolate, now and then, does not hurt. A lovely quote for all those people in love!! Traditional layers of chocolate cake, sandwiched together with sweet chocolate icing, is designed to please any of the occasions or fests. Chocolate layer cake is not one of the best, but it is the best dessert that can be prepared on the auspicious occasion of Valentine’s day. The heart shape will make the feelings stronger still and we’ll ask for more and more. Since the cake is prepared in advance, you can spend some real quality time with your love. Dedicated to my love exclusively, here is the relishing Chocolate Layer Cake with the overdose of nutty chocolate.

Ingredients:-


For the cake:-
 
220 grams all-purpose flour,
350 grams granulated sugar,
95 grams unsweetened cocoa powder,
1 teaspoon baking powder,
2 teaspoons baking soda,
1 teaspoon salt,
240 ml buttermilk,
120 ml vegetable oil,
2 large eggs,
1 teaspoon vanilla extract,
240 ml freshly brewed strong hot coffee


For Milk Chocolate Frosting:-


290 grams unsalted butter,
480 grams powdered sugar,
95 grams unsweetened cocoa powder,
5 tablespoons heavy cream,
1 teaspoon vanilla extract,
3/4 teaspoon salt,
15 oz chocolate chips


Preparation method:-


1. Preheat oven to 350 D. F degrees. Take two, 9 inch round cake pans, and apply nonstick spray.


2. For the cake, sift together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium sized bowl.


3. Set aside. Blend buttermilk, oil, room temperature eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients with the mixer on low. Add the coffee. The batter will be very thin, which is fine.


4. Pour the batter into prepared baking pans and bake for 27 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool before frosting.


5. For the frosting, cream the butter with a hand mixer on medium speed for 4 minutes. Add 3 cups of powdered sugar and 3/4 cup of cocoa powder. Mix on low.


6. Add 3 tablespoons of heavy cream and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Add more cocoa powder if the frosting is not chocolatey enough.


7. Place 1 layer, flat side up, on a plate. With a knife, spread the top with frosting. Place the second layer on top, rounded side up. Add the third layer too. Spread the frosting evenly on the top and sides of the cake.


8. Decorate with chocolate chips or as desired. The heart shape cake will melt your love.
Enjoy the Valentine’s treat!!!

Monday, 10 February 2014

Valentine’s Day Dinner - Roasted Duck with Pomegranate Glaze

If your date loves roasted duck, this is one of the richest, most elegant of all the main courses you can serve at your Valentine's day table. Slow roasted whole duck gives a flavorful, crispy meat and the spiced pomegranate complements it to the perfection. This is my idea of perfect dinner for my dream date. It's easy to make, serve and tastes wonderfully exquisite. Feel free to griddle your yummy roasted duck with pomegranate glaze.
Ingredients:-

1 pound duck,
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt,
2 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil,
1 small finely chopped shallot,
1 cup pomegranate juice,
1/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth,
1 teaspoon cornstarch,
2 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley


Preparation Method:- 
 
1. Preheat oven to 450 D. F. Sprinkle duck with salt. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. 

2. Add the duck and cook until browned on both sides, 4 minutes per side. Transfer the duck to a small baking dish.

3. Roast at 150 D. F, for 12 to 15 minutes, depending on the size of the piece. 
 
4. While the duck is roasting, return the pan to medium-high heat. Add shallot and cook till brown. 
 
5. Add pomegranate juice and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer; cook until reduced by half, 2 minutes. 
 
6. Stir broth and cornstarch in a small bowl until the cornstarch dissolves. Add to the pan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. 
 
7. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring, until the sauce is thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Pour juice over duck to accumulate juices.

8. Serve topped with the pomegranate glaze. Garnish with parsley, if desired.
Enjoy the dinner date with your Valentine!!

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Dish of the Day - Tomato Bredie

Africa is so very tantalizing that a mere mention of the continent fills your mind with adventurous safaris, rugged trekking expeditions, relaxing on the golden beach, mummies of ancient Egypt, crude cultures, all in all a paradise for travelers. During the medieval period, grand cities of Fez, Marrakech and Timbuktu were of utmost importance and can be adored even today. Nevertheless the journey would be incomplete if you do not explore the great African cuisine. And here we’re gonna talk about one of the most savored African dish, named Tomato Bredie.

Bredie originally comes from Malaysian origin but its varied flavors are widely loved in Africa. It is basically traditional stew with a perfect blend of meat and vegetables. Bredie has ample of variations such as green bean bredie, cabbage bredie and tomato bredie. Tomato Bredie is unique in itself. It contains meat and vegetables that serve as the best platter for nutritions plus spices that make the royal dish even more delectable. Tomato Bredie is the most famous version of this specialty.
Ingredients:-

1 tablespoon vegetable oil,
3 1/2 pounds chopped lamb,
2 tablespoons cake flour,
1 large chopped onion,
2 1/4 pounds fresh chopped tomatoes,
1 teaspoon salt,
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper,
6 whole white peppercorns,
2 bay leaves,
1 teaspoon brown sugar,
1 tablespoon white vinegar,
1 dash Worcestershire sauce,
1 cube beef bouillon cube,
2 quartered medium potatoes

Preparation Method:-

1. Take a heavy saucepan. Add some oil and keep it over medium high. Coat meat in flour. Cook until brown.

2. Add onion till they turn brown. Now add tomatoes and mix well. Stir in bay leaves, brown sugar, vinegar, salt, black pepper, white peppercorns, Worcestershire sauce and beef bouillon cube.

3. Cover it and simmer for 1 1/4 hours. Keep stirring. The stew must not stick to the bottom of the saucepan. Now add potatoes and cook over low heat for 45 minutes. 
 
4. Our dish is ready to be served. It complements well with steam rice.
Enjoy the luscious treat!!







Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Cocktails for Valentine’s Day

Love is just love, it can't be explained but can be certainly expressed. Any occasion is incomplete without drinks. We have lot to offer your love this Valentine’s day. Juz came up with the top enticing options with rich mixes of sparkling wine, golden Champagne and Vodka drive your love crazy..

  • Pom-Berry Bellini
Invite your love for exotic dinner and start with Pom-Berry Bellini cocktail. Bellinis are incredibly popular, and this is one of the tastiest of all the bellinis. The elegant drink is a mixture of pomegranate juice, sparkling champagne and natural blueberry jam. Fresh blueberries can be used for garnishing to give the fresh feeling of love. The enticing color would compel her to ask for more and more and more..
  • Amour a Mosa
If your sweetie is fond of fruity drink, Amour a Mosa is the classic drink to offer as a token of love. Drown into the rich refreshing classic mimosa, orange-infused vodka and mango juice. Make your sweetie, sweeter still by the sweety sweety drink.
  • Rose and Mint Champagne
It is very well said, "A rose speaks of love silently, in a language known only to heart". Rose and Mint Champagne is the answer to your question. Honey, mint and dries rosebuds, can make the best drink when when mixed with dry champagne. So give your love the rosy feel.
  • White Sand cocktail
With the tangy lemon sorbet, depending on how slushy you desire, with heaven of Cahaca and Prosecco, give your love, ultimate bliss. The peaceful white color will add peace to your relationship. With mint leaves as garnish, offer your Valentine the White Sand cocktail. 
  • Romeo and Juliet
This fruitful cocktail is the perfect blend of love with tequila and raspberry liquor uniting two souls on the auspicious occasion of Valentine’s day. The blazing red color doubles the heat within the lovers. May your love story be successful as that of Romeo and Juliet.
  • Winter Sunset 
Dreaming of a vacation in Mediterranean with your love. Feel the zest of love with tingling Winter Sunset drink. The coconut-flavored rum and white crème de cacao along with Tia Maria will definitely compel your date to ask for more. Warmed whipped cream shows the warmth of your love. Make your dream date fall for you with the rich Winter Sunset cocktail.
  • Un Dia en el Paraiso
Un Dia en el Paraiso means a day in Paradise. The reddish orangey drink will definitely wipe up your sorrows and fill your life with love. Shake and make the drink and wake up your love offering her the rich Un Dia en el Paraiso cocktail. Light-up your love ten times more than the color of drink.
  • Touch of Venus
Drown in the flavor of Italy, with Touch of Venus Cocktail, perfectly made for your mate. Limoncello will give you real tangy taste and fresh lemon juice is a fresh start to start with. Dry white wine with added lime calls for some quality time. Get romantic than ever before with the Touch of Venus Cocktail.
  • Berry Brazilian
The real sunny day in Brazil is well portrayed with the a Berry Brazilian Cocktail. With the Brazilian rum and red strawberries, enrich your love with yet rich strawberries agave nectar and cinnamon flavor. Rock and roll in love with large rocks glass of a very Berry Brazilian Cocktail. 
So what are you offering your love???