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Monday, 31 August 2015

Khow Suey

Khow Suey or Khause`

The dish is correctly spelt "Ohn no Khao Swe " or simply Khao Swe and sometimes "Ohn no khauk Swe " It refers more to coconut noodles and a tad different in the present day from the Indian cousin with many more spices and called Khow Suey.
Whatever the spelling may be, or the pronunciation, it is agreed that the meal is a stunning dish to present at the dining table and fun to make up by each one individually. It is full of flavours and no longer just locally available in Burma. It is easily found on menus all over the world in Thai restaurants, Indian Regional restaurants and even versions of it are available in supermarket shelves !!

Here is my version of it. Just a heads up that my ancestors were Persian, Indian, Pakistani and I am sitting here in Canada eating this delightful dish. Go figure.



The Chicken curry, egg noodles, perfect soft boiled eggs, green spring onions, fresh ginger, sliced garlic lightly fried, fresh corriander leaves, lemon wedges and crisp fried onions.


Marinate for an hour or more
1 kg/2.2lb de-boned chicken, in strips or small pieces
Marinade…..
1 ground onion
6 green chillies
6 cloves of garlic
1 inch piece fresh ground ginger
1 tsp fresh lemon juice

Heat a little oil in pan and sauté the chicken until the colour changes.
Add salt to taste.

In a pan roast/toast 2 or 3 tbsp gram flour (channa atta) and add 2 cups of chicken stock mixing it till it is smooth.
Bring to a boil, leave the pan uncovered, medium high flame, cook the chicken in this until half the gravy evaporates and then add
400-500ml  can of coconut milk
1 small cinnamon stick
3 cloves
Pinch of turmeric
1 tsp cumin powder
½ tsp crushed red chillie flakes
Pinch of brown sugar
1 whole cardamom, lightly bruised
Cook for 10 minutes, uncovered and leave to cool.
It tastes best if left to mature overnight.

Serve with egg noodles and condiments.
Condiments…..
Thin strips of fresh ginger
Thin slivers of fresh garlic, lightly fried
6 – 8 green onions thinly sliced
Chopped fresh green coriander

Red chilli flakes
Prawn achar
4 boiled eggs finely chopped
Crispy fried onions
Lime or lemon wedges

Tips
Generally a chicken dish it can be made with meat as well.
I would also encourage you to try it with Prawns.

More curry available in
Niloufer's Kitchen: Autumn download it now from Amazon.com

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Brandy Snaps







1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup dark corn syrup
1/4 cup salted butter
pinch of salt


1/2 cup flour
Optional 1 tsp ginger powder
1/2 cup brandy

In a pan mix together and heat over a gentle flame, the sugar, corn syrup butter and salt just until it all melts.
Remove from the fire and add the flour mix well into a roux and add the brandy until just soft and silky.
On a large baking tray prepared with parchment paper, drop the mixture with a spoon. Flatten it out as best as you can. It should be rather paper thin. Place each one at least two fingers apart. Do it in batches.
Bake in a preheated oven of 325F/160C for 12 minutes until a lovely golden caramel colour.
Remove . Wait for 30 seconds. flip each one over with a spatula or your finger tips. Roll them to your desired shape. If you wish to make baskets, take an overturned bowl and place the soft brandy snap allowing it to fall to the side. Wait for 3 minutes until it becomes crisp and remove gently.

This will make 12 Brandy Snaps.

Serve with a Fresh Peach ice-cream.

Tips
Substitute Golden Syrup instead of dark corn syrup.
Use cream instead of brandy if you prefer.
It looks complicated but is truly simple and most enjoyable.
Involve your kids in this as they will be able to artistically create it in no time.
It hardens very quickly so keep your equipment ready to roll. You can use the back of a rounded wooden spoon or spatula to curl the snap.
This tastes best freshly made. However you can keep it in an airtight container for 2 days.

You may need 3 to 4 baking trays if you wish to make all 12 together. 

Other flavours of ice cream that may compliment this delicious pastry is Salted Caramel icecream. Pina Colada  and Coconut and lime ice cream are also perfect choices.

For more delicious recipes click
Niloufer's Kitchen: Spanish Tapas

and
Niloufers Kitchen: French Bistro





Thursday, 6 August 2015

Summer Cake and Tropical Fruit




Tropical Fruit topped  Summer cake

A cake with fresh flavours that is a wonderful choice for a pool party, a bbq or a tea party.

The little black spot in the picture is the piece of vanilla bean added for the final perfection to this topping.

The Papaya in syrup topping for the freshly baked cake!!



Ingredients
5 oz  salted butter by weight
1 cup sugar
zest of  2 oranges
4 eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Ingredients for the topping
1 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
1/2 cup sugar
salt
tropical fruits of choice, a mango, small papaya or pineapple
squeeze of lemon 

Method

With an electric  beater whip until pale and light  
butter and sugar with the fresh orange zest.

Now add to it the eggs, one at a time
just mix in the sour cream.
Now with a spatula fold in by hand the sifted flour, baking powder and salt until just combined.


Pour into a prepared pan of 8 inches, buttered and floured.
Bake in a preheated oven of 350F/175C degrees till tester comes out clean about 30-40 minutes.
Sprinkle with icing sugar once cooled for visual effect.

For the topping
In a pan
1 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
add about  1/2 cup sugar to it, you may need a bit more if the oranges are very sour.
Optionally a piece of vanilla bean
Mix till all the sugar is dissolved. Bring this to a boil, lower the heat and gently let it simmer till syrupy.
Add to it from a choice of
One fresh papaya, quite firm, in small pieces
Or one large ripe but firm mango
Or half a fresh pineapple
A dash of salt
A squeeze of lemon 
Give it a boil just to incorporate the flavours.

Cool and serve as topping with the cake.

Tips
If you are buying fresh orange juice and do not wish to get more oranges use lemon zest instead.
The perfect choice of orange is a honey tangerine. The colour is beautiful as is the fragrance. Narangi and Kino is the counterpart in the Eastern world.
Vanilla bean is a luxury and not a necessity. Instead  simply add a drop of vanilla essence, literally a drop or a grain of vanilla bean paste at the very end once the syrup is made.
Use firm but ripe fruit for this.
A food processor will work well to beat the butter sugar and eggs. Stop and complete by hand.

For more delicious recipes from Niloufer's Kitchen download 
Niloufer's Kitchen: Spanish Tapas
or any other of your choice from the 
series of 10 http://www.nilouferskitchen.com/p/e-cookbooks.html

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Somen noodles topped with seared scallops





A Japanese Fusion delicacy from Niloufer's Kitchen.

Imagine a soft base somen noodles, topped with a crunch of pickled cucumber and ginger; topped with pan-fried seafood like a scallop, calamari or fresh tuna, finished with crunchy green onion and crushed sweet and salty macadamia nuts. All of it seasoned in nanami seasoning and a touch of wasabi powder for the daring!




The tangy pickling done in Mirin and Sake this artful
creation is both a visual delight and a delicious
bite of yummy goodness!!



200gms/ 6 ozs Somen Noodles - 36 tbsp
36 pieces scallops, tuna and calamari
2 tbsp oil to pan fry the seafood
36 slices of ready pickled ginger
1/2 tsp wasabi powder or to taste
2 tsp nanami powder
4 thinly sliced green onion, cut it on the diagonal
8 tbsp mirin
6 tbsp sake
1 cucumber, sliced paper thin with skin
macadamia nuts, roughly hand chopped
optionally add a layer of red radish sliced thinly

In a bowl mix the mirin and sake.
Soak the green onion cucumber and radish- if using it.
Leave aside.


In a pot boil 6 cups of water with 1 tsp salt and a drop of oil. Dunk the noodles into the boiling water and drain in a minute or two,

Sprinkle half the Nanami powder over the seafood and toss it.
in the meantime heat a skillet and add some oil to it. Pan fry the seafood on high for up to 3 minutes. Do not over cook.
Add all the liquid from the marinade into the skillet over the seafood and coat it well in the flavours.  
To plate, spoon the noodles top it with cucumber, ginger, radish and top it with the piece of seafood and green onion. Sprinkle with Nanami and wasabi powder. Serve immediately. this cannot be reheated.

Tips
Use shrimps, lobster or any other seafood of choice

Somen noodles are fine to serve warm to cool. However you can choose to toss them into the seafood mix to keep it warm.

If you wish to make it for your family toss it all together in a large bowl and serve it like Pasta!!

If you wish to use any kind of fresh herb with it peppery watercress is best.

Nanami Togarashi is a Japanese chilli powder made up of sesame seeds, ginger, seaweed and dry citrus peel. It also contains and different kinds of Japanese chilli

Mirin is a rice wine vinegar.

Sake is made of fermented rice.




Click for more recipes from Niloufer's Kitchen: Winter
this book has amazing recipes for an impressive dinner party menu.




Friday, 10 July 2015

Tandoori Fries

  

Tandoori Fries


Fries are popular and come in a variety of shapes and sizes. They are thin, long, short, with skin, skinless, home cut, home fries which are square, curly, wedged, crinkled, and the list goes on and on.
Let me add to all of this Tandoori Fries; The latest craze found in fusion restaurants. Here is Niloufer's Kitchen's take on them.

Simple to make, not fried but baked, just taste so yummy.
My family is now hooked on these!




Thick cut home style fries
Tandoori fries, with the skin on
Yummy Tandoori Fries


1kg / 2.2lb potato



1/4 tsp tumeric
1/2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp red chillie powder
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp oil








Wash and cut the potatoes.  Try to keep them as equal as possible. Put them in a deep large bowl.

Mix together the dry spices. Sprinkle all over the potatoes and toss them until it evenly distributes. Drizzle the oil all over them. Toss again.

Place them all on a baking tray lined with a parchment paper.  Preheat the oven to 300F/140C degrees, cook the fries for 45 minutes and then turn the oven to 400F/210C. Cook for another 20 minutes. This will crisp it up, give it the colour . Test  to check they are cooked through and serve warm.





Tips

Choose smooth, unblemished, thin skinned potatoes if you prefer them unpeeled. I generally use Yukon Gold whenever I can. 
Different types of potatoes cook differently. It is best to test them to ensure they are soft and cooked from the inside. Cooking times will also depend on how thin or thick you cut them.
I start on a low temperature to allow them to cook properly without burning. The high flame ensures it crisps up once it is cooked. The longer cooking time also ensures the Tandoori masala cooks through.
Serve this with main meals or serve it with a mayonnaise on the side. 
I like to serves this with a lemon and lime mayonnaise.

For more delicious recipes with Indian Spices click on
Niloufer's Kitchen: Autumn

and

Niloufer's Kitchen: Quick and Easy


Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Calamari Pakora

Calamari Pakoras



Pakoras are crispy fried Indian snack food  generally made with onions, potatoes or  green chillies. As the foods get more daring and nothing is out of bounds, fusion food is a wonderful way of trying new things.
Here are my Calamari Pakoras. Crisp, freshly deep fried and absolutely delicious.









1 cup potato flour
1 tsp red chillie powder
1/2 tsp salt

Prepare and leave until ready to fry and serve

6 calamari tubes, washed and  evenly cut in tube rounds, pat dry or drain well
Toss the cut calamari with 
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/4 tsp cumin powder
a  fresh scraping of nutmeg
1 tsp red chillie flakes
Then add
1 tbsp finely chopped corriander leaves
Juice of 1 large fresh lemon or lime

Cover, refrigerate and keep up to 4 hours. Remove the calamari from the cool 15 minutes prior to frying.

When ready to deep fry and serve,
Heat 3 cups of oil in a deep wok. Heat this to a temperature of 180C/350F,
You can check if it is hot enough by dropping a piece of bread into the hot oil.
If it bubbles and comes up it is ready. 

Now add 1/6th of the marinated calamari into the Potato Flour. Toss it and drop each ring into the hot oil. Work quickly. With a slotted spoon remove the rings and place on an absorbent kitchen paper.
Repeat 5 more times.

Adjust the flame according to how quick you can work. If it takes you some time between the lots, lower the flame and then bring it up again. This has to be cooked on a high flame. It takes just a minute to a batch.

Serve this fresh and hot with an assortment of dipping sauces like blue cheese mayonnaise, sweet and sour tamarind chutney, harissa and honey mayonnaise or a sweet and sour chili sauce.

Tips

There is a difference between squid and calamari. Calamari is the softer, easier to cook sea food. Calamari is smaller and the fins go all the way down. 
Like every other seafood try to buy it fresh from your fish monger and not the frozen ones available on shelves.

The crispness will depend on the correct temperature of the oil. Over heated oil will burn it while cooler oil will leave it soggy and oily.
Start by adding a few at a time. Your wok may be smaller or larger so make sure there is at least 6 inches of oil.

You may use another flour like gram flour/besan instead of the potato starch. But potato flour is lighter and cooks more evenly.

If using gram flour lower the flame after you reach the  temperature as it takes longer to cook through.

If you are  living in the UK there is a line of spices from Bart's and the Bharat Masala is a ready to use spice you may replace instead of the garam  masala, nutmeg and cumin in the recipe. 

For more delicious recipes from Niloufer's Kitchen: Quick and Easy simply click to download http://amzn.to/NKQuickNEasy













Photo courtesy
Tanya Vakil Fernandes

Fish Rus Chawal ~ Fish with gravy


 Machi no rus
Fish with a gravy

Comfort food best describes this incredible dish from everyday Parsi Cuisine. From the shores of Mumbai and Karachi Parsis tend to love their fish. In this original recipe a fish head was a must. Generally the whole fish was used, since it is the fish bones that give it an exceptional taste. In the western world our kids are unable to eat bone-in fish as it seems to be customary to find fillet fish rather than steaks. However  try adding just a fish bone from your fishmonger while cooking and remove it before serving to enhance flavours if you can!. 





1 cup of roughly chopped fresh tomato
11/2 tsp freshly grated garlic
1/2 ts freshly grated ginger
1/2 cup freshly chopped cilantro/corriander leaves
1 stalk of fresh mint
2 green chillies
1 1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 1/2 tsp red chillie powder
1 tsp salt
3 whole green cardamom pods, pressed
1 stick of cinnamon
3/4 cup crushed browned fried onions
1 1/2 cups water

1 lb fish of choice or salmon

Crush together, the tomato, garlic, ginger and green chillies and toss all of this in a pot;add the rest of the ingredients, except the fish and bring it to a boil.
Cover, lower the heat and cook for 20-30 minutes until the gravy is done.

Add the fish, simmer for 5 -7 minutes. Turn the stove off. Let it rest for 10 minutes, check if fish is cooked through and serve with Brown Rice.

Tips
Serve it with a lemon wedge, beetroots and green onions.

Add a few curry leaves if you like. 

For more Parsi Cuisine recipes click
Niloufer's Kitchen: Quick and Easy
and
Niloufer's Kitchen : Autumn

Comments from readers
 ·08th July 2015, Jamva Chaloji fb page.

Saturday, 4 July 2015

Tortellini and Tuna


Pasta-Tortellini and Tuna

Kids love anything that is fun, and tortellini can be fun. It is a belly button pasta, ring shaped and generally small, filled with spinach, herbs, cheese or even meat sometimes. I chose one with a spinach filling for this dish but a cheese filling may work just as well. This one is topped with tuna, olives and a fresh tomato sauce.


Spinach Tortellini, tomato sauce,tuna and olives with fresh herbs





The Tomato Sauce,
Cook together in a pan over the stove top. Bring it to a boil, cover, lower the heat and simmer for 1 hour.

500 gm/1 lb fresh tomatoes, skinned finely chopped
8 leaves of torn fresh Basil
3 tsp brown sugar
 3 freshly grated garlic cloves 
1 tsp salt
1 each of red,yellow and orange bell peppers, finely chopped, preferably skinned
3 tbsp olive oil
1/ 2 cup browned onions finely diced
optional
dash of Ancho chillie powder
dash of dried herbs
dash of tabasco

Taste and adjust seasoning.

Remove half the tomato sauce for another time and freeze.

Add to just the half of the remaining tomato sauce
500gm/ 1lb, 2 cups Tuna in oil 
150 gms Olives
2 tbsp Capers
2 tbsp fresh herbs of choice

Toss it all and serve on a bed of cooked Tortellini Pasta of choice.

Optionally, Serve with freshly grated Parmesan

Tips
Always cook enough Tomato sauce to pack and freeze for the next time round.  It saves time, energy and washing up. Do not freeze in aluminium or tin foil.  It is best to use a glass bowl.
Thaw it in the fridge for 24 hours and reheat the tomato sauce properly bringing it to a boil before reuse.
Red and Yellow peppers area available in jars that have been roasted and peeled for simplicity.
Cooked Tuna in olive oil also comes in glass jars which is in large slivers rather than broken bits.
Use the excess olive oil in the water while boiling your pasta. 


For more recipes click and download 
Niloufer's Kitchen : French Bistro


Photo Courtesy
Tanya Vakil Fernandes

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Fish Tacos






Fish Tacos 

Mango salsa and marinated fish, filled in a corn tortilla, topped with or without a Chipotle sauce makes the perfect fish taco.
Lately every diner in Canada seems to be serving up this Mexican street food. They are delicious, easy to prepare and a versatile family meal.
Try making this with my 
it will taste divine!!



Corn tortillas, coleslaw, mango salsa, yummy halibut fish marinated in my magical moroccan marinade and panfried.


6-8  corn Tortillas

2 lbs/1 kg firm white fish fillet cubes, Halibut, Haddock or Cod. 
Alternately Salmon and Tuna can also be used. Lightly salt the pieces before marinating them.

For the Salsa,
Finely chop
1 ripe peeled mango
1 small onion
2 jalapenos
2 thin long red fresh chillies
2 small cucumbers
Sprinkle with salt
Juice of  1 fresh lime
Mix well and keep aside.

Optional

Chipotle Mayonnaise
1 cup of thinly sliced coleslaw


Marinade the fish in 3 tbsp of my Magical Moroccan Marinade
Pan fry the fish on all sides until just cooked. 

To Assemble
Warm the Tortilla in a skillet, 
Place on a platter and fill it with coleslaw, salsa and top it with the fish.
Drizzle with Chipotle Mayonnaise and eat immediately.
Tacos cannot be made ahead nor reheated.

Tips
Use any kind of sauce you enjoy.
Make your own mayonnaise mixture with
Adobe sauce, siracha sauce, a sweet and sour mango sauce.
Other recommendations are a blue cheese mayonnaise or an ancho chillie one.

If you do not enjoy mango in your food, use tomatoes instead.

For more delicious recipes from 
Niloufer's Kitchen: Moroccan Cuisine click to download now.
http://amzn.to/NKMoroccan

If you need any help to download the e-book visit https://read.amazon.com

Photo Courtesy
Tanya Vakil Fernandes

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Mussels au gratin

Mussels au gratin

Browned, crusty topping of bread and cheese, with or without butter and egg served in a shallow dish is what au gratin stood for. It is such a 60's term; but still much enjoyed by many of us when served in restaurants all over the world particularly those catering to the French Cuisine. Here I share with you a dish that I recall eating in Paris in a Belgian restaurant!! The most delicious ''pizza'' au gratin - without a base of bread. Instead they had cooked mussels off the shell covered with a pizza sauce, cheese et al. Broiled and baked to bubble and brown the dish it was served with fries and a super crusty bread to mop up the sauce. It was rather messy to eat, yet a delicious experience as I remember. 

It can be a bit of prep work but should be well worth the effort  specially if you enjoy  eating mussels and  serving show stoppers at your table.

Tips are there to save time and effort as always, the choice is only yours.












Ingredients

1 kg/2.2 lb fresh mussels, washed and left to drain in a collander
3 tbsp olive oil
1 clove of garlic
pinch of red chilli flakes
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup liquid. Broth or white wine

The Tomato Sauce,
Cook together in a pan over the stove top. Bring it to a boil, cover, lower the heat and simmer for 1 hour.

500 gm/1 lb fresh tomatoes, skinned finely chopped
8 leaves of torn fresh Basil 
3 tsp brown sugar
3 freshly grated garlic cloves 
1 tsp salt
1 each of red,yellow and orange bell peppers, finely chopped
3 tbsp olive oil
1/ 2 cup browned onions finely diced
optional
dash of Ancho chillie powder
dash of dried herbs
dash of tabasco

The Gratin
Mix together in a bowl to sprinkle all over

1 cup bread crumbs like Panko
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3 tbsp finely chopped parsley
dash of salt
drop of olive oil


Tips


Use a can of tomatoes with basil to start off with.
Use already roasted peppers peeled and ready in a jar. Use the same coloured peppers if you wish to finish off the jar.
This quantity of tomato sauce is far too much for this quantity of mussels. You may either prepare half or freeze the remaining.

If you wish use a store bought pizza sauce and add the peppers and make it your own.
Add your favourite seasonal fresh herbs, thyme and oregano go well in a tomato sauce.

Your favourite cheese will work instead of Parmesan, use one that melts well like Gruyere or good cheddar.

Make your own breadcrumbs with left over bread or buy a box of Panko.

Fill the plate up with your mussels and keep the tomato sauce slightly wet rather than thicker to mop it with bread.
Serve a warm crusty bed to enjoy with all of this, perhaps a garlic bread. Cheese bread also makes a good alternate.


If you prefer to keep it with lots of tomato sauce you can serve it with bread too.
Mix of cheese panko and fresh herbs, tomato sauce, cooked mussels in half shell, warm crusty bread to tear and share, final bites of  Mussels au gratin to enjoy!


For more delicious recipes from Niloufer's Kitchen: French Bistro
click http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00J2KMB4C


Simply click https://read.amazon.com to learn how to download an e-book

Photo courtesy
Tanya Vakil Fernandes