Friday, November 27, 2015

Waldorf salad



Tonight's menu
Waldorf salad
Biscuits

Waldorf Salad with Cajun chicken and warm biscuits

The first Waldorf Salad was created by Oscar Tschirky, the maitre d'hotel of the New York's legendary Waldorf Astoria in 1893. It may be more than a century old, but it is still the most requested dish in their menu. This timeless American classic dish consists of apples, celery and grapes dressed in a creamy dressing and topped with candied walnuts. It was originally dressed in mayonnaise but has since undergone some transformation to make it more modern, light and refreshing. Be sure to add it to your menu, you will be delighted with the combination of textures and flavors. Here is how I make this salad.


Waldorf Salad
Ingredients: 
1 medium red apple
1 small green apple
1/2 cup grapes
1 stalk celery
Handful toasted walnuts or pecans
Dressing
1 tbsp mayonnaise or sour cream
3 tbsp plain yogurt
Freshly grated pepper
2 teaspoons lemon juice
Salt to taste (optional)
  1. Whisk together all the ingredients for dressing. Keep aside.
  2. Lightly toast the nuts in a skillet over medium heat, stirring constantly until lightly browned and aromatic (2-3 minutes), keep aside.
  3. Dice or julienne the apples, dice the celery and cut the grapes in half. Put these in a large bowl along with half the toasted walnuts. 
  4. Add the dressing and stir to coat. Serve topped with the remaining nuts.
Variations:
  1. Add cooked chicken to make it a chicken Waldorf salad.
  2. Serve on a warm tortilla as a lunch wrap.  

Friday, November 20, 2015

Chicken lettuce wraps





Biting into a lettuce wrap for the first time is a treat for the taste buds. Cool crisp lettuce gives way to hot chicken filling that is bursting with flavors of ginger and garlic and crunchiness of chestnuts. Ready in 20 minutes, these wraps can be served for lunch or as appetizers. Wrap the filling inside tortillas to make chicken wraps or serve them over hot steamed rice. Super healthy and a treat for your palate.

Ingredients: (Serves 4)1 tbsp sesame oil1 tsp ginger garlic paste
1 lb ground chicken
1 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms
1/2 can water chestnuts, drained and diced
1/2 cup chicken broth
2 tbsp soy sauce
1-2 tsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp hot sauce
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 carrot, grated
Bunch of green onions, thinly sliced
Boston lettuce leaves to serve
  1. Heat sesame oil in a large frying pan over medium-high. Add ginger garlic paste and saute for a few seconds. Add minced chicken. 
  2. Cook stirring often with a fork to keep meat crumbly, cooking until meat is no longer pink, about 2-3 min. 
  3. Add mushrooms and water chestnuts. Cook for 2 min. Add grated carrots and green onion. Cook stirring often for a minute.
  4. In a small bowl whisk together broth with soy sauce, vinegar, hot sauce, honey and cornstarch in a medium bowl until cornstarch dissolves. Add to chicken mixture. Cook on high until sauce is slightly thickened, about 1-2 min. Remove from heat. 
  5. Feel free to adjust the flavor here by adding more hot sauce and or honey to get the desired result. 
  6. Scoop a heaping chunk of the filling onto each lettuce leaf and serve. Can also serve this over steamed rice or as a filling for a wrap. 



Friday, November 13, 2015

Kachumber Raita

Cucumber, tomato, onion Raita
Mixed salad chopped to small bite sized chunks in creamy plain yogurt, flavored with salt and dry roasted crushed cumin. An excellent accompaniment to any spicy main dish as a cooling agent. Serve this with biryani, curried chicken and lamb, with any grilled meat and veggies, with stuffed paratha's and poori.

Kachumbar Raita
Ingredients
2 cups yogurt blended into a smooth consistency
Salt to taste
½ teaspoon whole cumin seeds
Pinch red chilli powder.
Finely chopped fresh coriander

  1. 1 cup altogether finely chopped --- red onion, cucumber and tomato 
  2. In a small pan dry roast cumin seeds for a few minutes till they get darker in color and impart a roasted aroma. In a mortar and pestle coarsely grind these hot seeds. 
  3. Mix all ingredients together and cool. 
  4. Serve alongside Biryani.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Edamame Spread




Edamame is the young soybean that's harvested before the beans have had a chance to harden. These are available shelled or in the pod, fresh or frozen. This low calorie and gluten free little bean is rich in protein and is a great source of iron and calcium. Specially for those who follow a plant based diet edamame can be a significant source of protein. 
Steamed edamame beans, sprinkled with salt form a perfect snack. Here is another way to enjoy this wonder bean. Serve with brown rice crackers and a bunch of veggies.
 Ingredients: 
1/2 cups frozen shelled edamame
2 cloves of garlic, peeled
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp sesame oil
Salt and pepper
Few tbsp water to blend
Vegetables and rice crackers, for serving
  1. In a medium saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the edamame and garlic until edamame are tender, about 5 minutes. Drain.
  2. In a food processor, puree edamame, garlic, lemon zest and juice, oil, and 1/2 cup water until very smooth, about 2 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl. If needed, thin by adding water one tablespoon at a time. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  3. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 day. (If needed, add additional water.) Serve with radishes and crackers.