Sep 30, 2007

Banana -Strawberry Milkshake

This is my entry for JFI:Banana event.
In the morning when I want something healthy and quick I like this milkshake along with my cereals. It hardly takes me 5 mins to make it and in summers it's a bless :)

Serves 1

Ripe Banana – 1
Strawberries – 2-3
Vanilla Ice cream – 1 scoop(optional)
Milk – 1 cup
Sugar to taste

Blend all the ingredients together along with some crushed ice. Banana Strawberry milkshake is ready to serve. Serve chilledIsn’t it easy and quick?

Sep 28, 2007

Spinach Pesto Pasta

Serves 2-3

Almonds – 3/4 cup
Fresh Spinach- 4 oz
Garlic cloves – 3 (big)
Olive oil – ½ cup
Pepper- ½ tsp
Grated Parmesan Cheese – 1/2 cup
Your choice of Pasta – approx 6 oz
Salt and pepper (optional) to taste

Cook the pasta as per package instruction (I have used whole wheat pasta). Roast the almond and allow them to cool naturally. Now in a food processor combine spinach, garlic, almonds and salt and grind it to a smooth paste. Add the cheese and grid again. Add the oil at regular interval until you get the desired consistency. I like to keep almonds bit coarse rather than a powder which gives it a crunchy taste. Mix pasta in the sauce, sprinkle some freshly ground pepper (optional), garnish it with some cheese and serve it with roasted garlic bread and salad.

Note – You can blanch the spinach before using to reduce its bitterness. You can replace the spinach and almonds with fresh basil and Pine nuts, which is used in authentic Pesto sauce.

Sep 9, 2007

Spinach-Cheese Stuffed jalapeños

Ingredients -
Serves 2

Large fresh jalapeño peppers - 4
bread crumbs- 2 cups
Parmesan Cheese – 1 ½ cups
Spinach fresh- 4 cups, frozen- 2 cups
crushed black pepper- 1tsp
grated ginger- 1tsp

Note- Here I have used large jalapeños which are very mild in taste. If these are not available use red/green/yellow bell pepper. Split them in half length wise, remove the seeds and use. Stuffing has to be adjusted according to the size.

For stuffing-
In a pan take 1 tbsp of olive oil. When it’s hot add the spinach and ginger and stir fry it on medium heat till the water from spinach evaporates. Now add salt. Allow it to cool naturally. When it cools down, mix 1 cup cheese and 1 cup of bread crumb and crushed black pepper in it. Mix it well.

For jalapeños-
Split jalapenos in half length wise and remove the seeds. In a pan take 1tsp of oil and place the Jalapeños in that. Cover and cook them both the sides for 1-2 min till the color of the Jalapeños become pale. Allow them to cool naturally. Now stuff the Jalapeños with one layer of spinach-cheese mixture, one layer of cheese and one layer of breadcrumbs (this is to avoid the cheese from coming out). Secure the Jalapeños with toothpick. Now take 1 tbsp of oil in a pan and place the jalapenos in that. Cover it and cook it on both the sides for almost 3-4 min. Meanwhile add some more oil in order to avoid them for burning/sticking to the pan. Server hot with crisp salad :)

Stir Fried Garlic Noodles-

Serves 2

Boiled pasta/noodles- 1 ½ cups
garlic finally chopped- 2 tbsp
green chillies chopped - 2 tbsp
Soya sauce - 2 tbsp
Vinegar – 1tsp
Red chili sauce- 2 tbsp

Black pepper powder - 1 tsp

Aji-no-moto (mono sodium glutamate) - ½ tsp (optional)
1 cup of following veges cut in thin strips –

Carrot ,Baby corn, Green/Red/yellow bell pepper, French beans

Note- Some sauces has extra salt in it so should be adjusted according to the taste . If you don like or want to avoid garlic, replace it with ginger. Use high flame for stir fry in order to avoid veges becoming soggy. Veges can be adjusted according the taste/availability.

Cook noodles/pasta according to the package instruction. In a sauce pan/wok take 4 tbsp oil. When the oil is smoking hot add garlic. Stir fry it till it becomes golden brown in color. Now add chopped green chilies and stir fry it for another ½ min. Now add all the veges and stir fry it on high flame for a min. Now add soya sauce, chilli sauce, vinegar, ajinomoto, salt and stir fry it for another ½ min. Now add the boiled pasta/noodles. Stir fry it on high flame for 2 min without covering it on high flame. Now add freshly ground black pepper, stir it well and Tadaaaaaaaaa!!! It’s ready to serve :)

Masala Baby Corn

Serves 4

Canned baby corn 7 nos- cut in around 1/4 inches thick rounds
Onion chopped-1 cup
Tomato pure of 2 large tomatoes
gram flour (Besan) - 1 ½ tbsp
Green chillies chopped – ½ tsp
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Garam Masala- 1 tsp
Coriander Powder – 1 ½ tbsp
Red chilli powder – 1/2tsp
Grated ginger- 1tbs
Asafetida (Hing)- a pinch
Oil – 4 tbsp
Salt to taste

Note- All the spices can be adjusted according to the taste. If you don get canned baby corn, fresh ones can also be used. Cook them in boiled water till they are tender but still crisp. For people who don't eat onions can skip it. After cooking the gram flour add Tomato pure in it.

Take 3 tbsp oil in a pan, add
asafetida and cumin seeds. When they start cracking add gram flour, stir it continuously and cook till it becomes light brown in color and a nice aroma starts coming out of it, say for almost a min. now add onions and add the remaining 1tbsp oil. Cook till they become golden brown in color (You may not be able to see the color of the onions may be because of the gram flour so cook it uncovered for almost 3-4 min. stir t in between in order to avoid them from burning). Now add the tomato puree and all the spices except salt. Cover it and cook it for almost 3 min on medium flame (the gravy will become red in color and oil will be visible on the surface). Now add the baby corns and salt. Stir it well and cook for 1 min without covering the pan. Now add 1 ½ cup of water (water can be adjusted according to the consistency of the gravy one wants). Now cover it and cook for almost 10 min on low flame. Garnish with coriander and serve with roti, naan or rice :)

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