Saturday, September 15, 2012

Simple Upma

       Upma is a versatile and quick meal made with semolina / rava. This is the basic recipe for upma, we can add nuts, dry fruits and ghee/ butter to make it  rich, we can also add peas, carrots and beans to it and make it more healthier.
rava upuma
1 cup             semolina / rava
3                   green chillies
few                curry leaves
few strands    cilantro/ coriander leaves
1 tbs              shredded coconut
1.5                 cup water
salt to taste
To temper:
3 tsp                oil
1/2 tsp             mustard seed
1 tsp                black gram/ urud dhal
1. Dry roast the rava on low flame, (we can smell a nice roasted smell when it's done). The rava should be roasted properly - to avoid a sticky upma
2. Remove the rava from the pan and keep it aside. Heat oil in the same pan and add mustard seeds and black gram seeds / urud dhal.
3. After the mustard splutters, add the curry leaves, onion and green chillies. When the onion becomes brown add the turmeric powder and coconut. 
4. Add water and salt. 
5. When the water starts to boil, reduce the heat, add the rava mixture slowly to the water, stirring it all the time.
6. Stir it well without any lumps. Garnish it with coriander leaves.
Tips for taste:
1.  Coconut chutney is a good side dish for upma.
coconut chutney recipe
2. For a quick upma, dry roast large amount of rava, cool it and store in a container.
Upma in MLA pesarattu


Thursday, September 13, 2012

Insalata Caprese/ Sweet summer salad

Insalata Caprese means- Salad in the style of Capri (it's an island near Naples). 
Insalata Caprese!!!
      This is the peak season for tomato and basil, perfect time to make this colorful, easy breezy summer salad. The sweet and fresh, vine ripen tomatoes (from our neighbor- friend's garden) and a bunch of  fresh basil leaves gives this dish a crisp freshness. 
2                 tomatoes
6 oz            soft mozzarella cheese
1 tbs           extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp           pepper 
few             small basil leaves
salt to taste
1. Cut tomatoes and cheese into thin slices.
2. In a service plate arrange the tomato slices separately and place the cheese slices over it.
3. Sprinkle pepper and salt, drizzle the olive oil over the tomatoes and garnish it with basil leaves. 
love the colors!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Fruit and Nutty Pinwheels

   This savory snack can be used as an appetizer or can be enjoyed with tea. 
3                  dates
4                  small red chillies 
2 tbs            raisins
2 tbs            cashews
2 tbs            pecans
2 tbs            dried cranberries 
1  sheet       puff pastry  
salt              to taste       
1. Thaw the pastry to room temperature, pre heat the oven to 250* f.
2. Grind the chillies in a blender/ mixer, now add all the remaining ingredients with the chilli and grind it coarsely. 
3. On a lightly floured surface, unfold and roll out the thawed pastry. With the long side facing you, spread the dried fruit filling uniformly over it.
4.  Starting at the long side, roll up like a jelly roll (pictures at the end of this post).
5.  Cut the pastry crosswise into 1' slices. Place the slices cut side down on a baking sheet.
6. Bake it for 15 mins or until the pastries are golden brown.
7. Transfer it to a serving plate and enjoy.
dried fruits & nuts filling....
cut 1 inch slices...
open the outer shell of a side.....
with a knife..
slightly, like a flower



Monday, September 10, 2012

Pears in Blankets with caramel sauce

              Grocery shopping in summer is always fun.  We can find wide variety of  fruits and vegetables in the produce section. Some times we'll get carried away and buy them in bulk. In our house, most of the time it's pear. There are more pear recipes in this blog than any other fruits. 
           In this recipe, pear slices are coated in a brown sugar blend, wrapped in puff pastry and served with caramel sauce or chocolate sauce and toasted nuts.  Serve it warm.
pear in blanket!

1               puff pastry sheet
1               pear
4 tsp          butter
1/8 tsp       salt
1/3 cup      brown sugar
1 tbs          all purpose flour
1/4 tsp       powdered cinnamon
1/4 tsp       powdered nutmeg
1 tbs          toasted pecan pieces
4    tsp      caramel sauce 
2    tbs      powdered sugar
pears in puff pastry
with caramel sauce...
1. Thaw the pastry sheet as per the package instruction, pre- heat oven to 350* f.
2. Mix all the dry ingredients together with butter to a crumbly mix.
3. Peel and slice the pear into 6 equal slices.
3. Cut 6 disks from the thawed pastry sheet and keep it aside.
4. Coat the pear slices with the brown sugar mixture and place it on the cut pastry disks, sprinkle any remaining  crumble over the pears.
5. Pull two sides of the pastry disk over the pear slice and press it together on the top, continue with all the pieces.  
6. Bake it in the oven for 12- 15 mins or till the pastry is puffed to a nice golden brown. Sprinkle the powdered sugar over the puffs and drizzle it with caramel or chocolate sauce, serve it warm.  
cut discs from the pastry sheet...
brown sugar coated pear slice...
Pull two sides of the pastry disk over the pear slice and press it together on the top
caramelized pear in a warm crispy puff....