June 14, 2009

Asparagus Puff Pastry

Today I tried Asparagus Puff Pastry at home and it turned out great. The first time I had this was at La Panier and never missed to go in everytime I was at Pikes place.Although it did not turn up exactly like the one in La Panier, I managed to make a good appetizer out of it and the recipe was too easy to skip

1 sheet frozen puff pastry semi thawed
1/3 cup cream cheese
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill or chives
2 tablespoon parsley
24 fresh Asparagus, about 1 pound
2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
salt to taste
1 egg

1.Wash the asparagus and make it into a paste using food processor.No need to use extra water.
2.Combine cream cheese,dill,parsley,salt with the asparagus paste.
3.Divide pastry sheet in half and cut widthwise into 1-1/4-in. pieces.
4.Spread the asparagus mixture on the strips and close the edges. Place them onto a greased baking tray.
5.Place 1 in. apart on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray.
6.Brush with egg substitute and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake at 425° for 8-12 minutes or until golden. Serve warm.

Mini Falafels with Raita

400g can Chick Peas, drained
400g can Butter Beans, drained
3 small green chilies
1/4 cup of each, fresh mint, coriander and parsley, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 teaspoon each ground cumin and cinnamon
1 egg
1/4 cup dry bread crumbs

1.Place all falafel ingredients into a food processor and blend until well combined. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
2.Roll two teaspoons of mixture into an oval shape, repeat with remaining mixture. Place onto a greased oven tray and spray lightly with oil and cook in a preheated oven on 350°C for 20 minutes.
3.Serve with Raitha.

TIP: Wet hands before rolling the falafels to prevent the mixture sticking.
Add a tablespoon of finely chopped onions,parsley and green chilli to raitha for a little flavor.

April 13, 2009


4 cups fresh corn kernels
2 cups nonfat milk
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, diced (about 2 cups)
1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and diced (about 1 cup)
1 medium zucchini, (about 1/2 pound) diced
2 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
2 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
3/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves

1. Blend 2 cups of corn and milk until smooth. Set aside.
2.Heat the oil in a large soup pot. Add the onion, bell pepper, and zucchini and cook, stirring until the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes.
3.Add the remaining 2 cups of corn and the broth and bring to a boil.
4.Add the pureed corn and tomatoes and cook until warmed through, but not boiling.
5.Add the salt and season with pepper. Serve garnished with the basil.

April 12, 2009


2 cups Basmati rice
4 cups Water
3 tbsp oil
Salt to taste
4 clove
2 green cardamoms
2 black cardamoms
1 inch cinnamon
1 blade mace
1 bay leaf
2 chopped Onion
1 inch ginger
5 garlic
2 tsp chilli powder
1 tbsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp crushed peppercorns
2 tomato
1/4cup fresh coriander leaves
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
1/2 cup yogurt
1/4 cup skimmed milk
1/2 tsp garam masala
few drops kewra water
15-20 fresh button mushrooms
1 tbsp lime juice

1.Make tomato puree.Whisk skimmed milk with yogurt.
2.Heat oil add bay leaf,cloves,cardamons,cinnamon,mace,salt.
3.Add onions,cook till it turns translucent.Add ginger-garlic paste.
4.Add red chili powder,coriander powder,crushed peppercorns,cumin powder and turmeric powder.
5.Then add tomato puree.Cook till oil separates and add yogurt,garam masala,coriander and mint leaves.
6.Add mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes.
7.Add water and wait till it boils and then add rice.
8.Keep it for 1 whistle
9.Garnish with coriander leaves and lime juice.

April 11, 2009


Cracked black pepper-a coarser grind of the kitchen staple-lends a lightly spicy flavor without the bite of fresh chiles.
For Honey-Glazed Tofu:
10oz extra-firm tofu
2 tsp cracked black pepper
2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp salt
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 cup honey

For Couscous:
2 cups vegetable broth(or substitute with water)
2 medium carrots,chopped
1 cup edamane
1/2 cup green peas
2 tsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
2 tsp Cayenne pepper
1 1/2 cups Couscous
1/4 cup chopped Pine nuts(or substitute with your favorite nuts)

1.To make Honey-Glazed Tofu:
Place tofu between two plates and set heavy pot on top.Drain for about 10 minutes,and pat dry.Cut tofu into 3/8-inch thick slices.Combine pepper,thyme,and salt in a small bowl.Coat tofu slices with pepper mixture, and set aside.
2.To make Couscous:
Bring broth,carrots,edamames,green peas,olive oil and salt to a boil in covered saucepan.Remove from heat,stir in couscous and cover.Let steam 5 minutes,then fluff with fork.
3.Meanwhile,heat oil and honey in a large skillet over medium-high heat until bubbling.Place tofu in pan and cook for 3 minutes. Turn and cook 3 minutes more,spooning thickening sauce over tofu.
4.To serve:Stir pinenuts into couscous.Spoon onto plates and top with Honey-Glazed Tofu.