Mediterranean Olive Bread

Ingredients:

  • 3 1/4 cups bread flour
  • 2 tbsp semolina or cornmeal
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 2 tsp dry thyme
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced olives, well drained. This could be mix of black olives, pitted sliced Kalamata olives, stuffed green olives, etc.
  • 6-8 slices pickled jalapeno (optional)
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Method:

  1. Drain the olives, slice and put aside
  2. Chop jalapeno into small pieces and add to the olives
  3. If kneading by hand, in a mixing bowl add dry ingredients – bread flour, dry thyme and yeast
  4. Then add wet ingredients – combine water, salt, lemon zest, chopped olives and jalapeno and knead for 5-6 minutes to form a smooth ball
  5. If kneading using bread maker dough cycle, in the bread maker bowl add wet ingredients – water, salt, lemon zest, chopped olives and jalapeno
  6. Then add dry ingredients – bread flour, dry thyme and yeast and knead for 10-15 minutes
  7. Select a large bowl for proofing the dough – dough volume will increase at least twofold
  8. Evenly grease bowl with 1/2 tbsp olive oil, transfer the dough into bowl and coat the dough with another 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  9. Cover bowl and keep in warm area for 4-5 hours. If using yogurt maker to keep the dough warm, place something between bottom of bowl and heated yogurt maker surface to avoid overheating base of bowl
  10. Once dough has doubled in size, on flat countertop, sprinkle 1 tbsp semolina / cornmeal, and gently roll the dough in it
  11. Place dough back in bowl, cover with moist cloth and let it rest for another 30 minutes
  12. Select a baking bowl with lid, put the bowl and lid in the oven and preheat oven to 450 F
  13. Once oven is ready, carefully take out the heated bowl
  14. Place the dough on parchment paper and place the parchment paper with dough in the heated bowl
  15. Evenly sprinkle the balance 1 tbsp semolina on the dough and make 2 long cuts on the top of the dough
  16. Cover the bowl with its lid and put it to bake in the oven
  17. Bake covered for 30 minutes
  18. Remove the lid and bake for another 25-30 minutes till the crust is lightly brown
  19. Test with a skewer that bread is fully baked
  20. Remove from oven and let loaf cool on cooking rack for an hour or so before cutting and enjoying it with your favorite soup or stew

Serves: 4-6

 

Inspiration sources:

https://foolproofliving.com/olive-bread-recipe/

https://foodnessgracious.com/mediterranean-olive-bread/

https://www.oliviascuisine.com/mediterranean-black-olive-bread/

Gotsu

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup moong dal
  • 1 tsp peanut oil
  • 2 1/2 tsp gram dal
  • 1 1/2 tsp urad dal
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 3-4 cascabel chili (rattle chili) or any other type of dry chili pepper
  • 1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 1 tsp asafetida
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 15-20 curry leaves
  • 75 gm small peeled whole red onions or 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 tomato chopped
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 4-5 round eggplants, chopped small
  • 3/4 cup tamarind water – 1 medium lemon size of tamarind (50 g) soaked in hot water and squeezed
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp jaggery (optional… and don’t overdo else the gotsu will taste like Gujarati sweet dal!)
  • 2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves

Method:

  1. Wash and cook mung dal (pressure cooker 2-3 whistles) and keep aside
  2. Put your cooking pan on medium heat
  3. Add oil to the pan
  4. Add gram dal and sauté for 1 minute
  5. Add urad dal and sauté for 1 minute
  6. Add coriander seeds and red chilies and roast all the ingredients well on low medium heat for 2 minutes
  7. Add fenugreek seeds and roast for another minute
  8. When roasted well, turn off the heat, add asafetida and mix well
  9. Transfer the roasted mix to a plate and let it cool and then grid to fine powder and put aside
  10. Lightly mop up the pan and heat sesame oil on medium heat
  11. Add mustard seeds and let them pop
  12. Add curry leaves and sauté for about 30 seconds
  13. Add onions and sauté well for 4-5 minutes till light brown
  14. Add chopped tomato and stir well
  15. Add turmeric powder and mix well
  16. Add chopped eggplants, mix well
  17. Turn on the heat to high, add 1/2 cup water and cook for 5-6 minutes
  18. Add tamarind water and mix well
  19. Add salt, jaggery and mix well
  20. Add the dal powder done in the earlier step, mix well and cook for 2-3 minutes
  21. Add cooked moong dal, mix well, add 1 cup water, mix well and cook for 2-3 minutes
  22. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with pongal, vada or dose

Serves: 4

 

Inspiration source:

Chinese Vegetable Fried Rice

This is the noodle variation of the same recipe

 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1-2 sticks green onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup diced carrot
  • 1 cup chopped broccolini
  • 4-5 large cremini mushrooms, chopped
  • 2 tbsp Chinese chili oil (https://veggiefoodie.com/2020/12/08/chinese-chili-oil/)
  • 1/2 cup corn kernels
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp salt or to taste depending on salt content in your soy sauce

Method:

  1. Use a fork to roughly crush the chickpeas and put aside
  2. Put pan on medium heat and add chili oil
  3. Add garlic, red onions, carrot, broccolini and sauté for 2-3 minutes
  4. Add green onions, chickpeas, mushroom and sauté for another minute
  5. Add corn and rice, drizzle soy sauce evenly over the rice and sprinkle salt
  6. Sauté for 2-3 minutes and serve hot

 

Serves: 4

 

Inspiration source:

 

Chai Masala

 

Ingredients:

Whole spices

  • 4 tbsp green cardamom pods
  • 2 tbsp cloves
  • 2 tbsp black peppercorns
  • 2 sticks cinnamon (about 10 gm)
  • 1 nutmeg, broken into pieces
  • 2 star anise
  • 2 tbsp fennel seeds

Spice powder

  • 4 tbsp dried ginger powder

Optional

  • 2 mace flowers
  • 2 dry basil twigs or 1 tbsp dry basil seeds
  • 1-2 licorice sticks
  • 1 tbsp long pepper roots (ganthoda)

Method:

  1. Roast the whole spices in a pan on low heat for 2-3 minutes and then cool
  2. Grind to fine powder
  3. Mix in ginger powder
  4. Sieve the mixture
  5. Grind any coarse spices left in the sieve… your chai masala powder is ready!
  • Store in airtight glass container in a cool dark place
  • When making chai, add 1/2 tsp of this masala to 1 cup chai

Inspiration source:

https://m.tarladalal.com/chai-ka-masala–chai-powder–tea-masala–indian-masala-tea-powder-4217r

 

Garlic Chili Noodles

 

Ingredients:

  • 5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 200 g spaghetti
  • 2-3 dried red chili peppers
  • 3 tbsp Chinese chili oil (https://veggiefoodie.com/2020/12/08/chinese-chili-oil/)
  • 1 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
  • 1 tbsp peanut oil or any other vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped cabbage
  • 1/2 cup edamame
  • 1/4 cup basil (packed)

Method:

  1. Cook the spaghetti to the desired softness level, strain and put aside
  2. Cook edamame to desired softness level and put aside
  3. Heat 1 tbsp peanut oil in a pan on high heat
  4. Sauté the chopped cabbage to desired softness level and put aside
  5. Remove the seeds from the dried peppers and roughly chop
  6. Heat up a pan to medium heat. Add the chili oil
  7. Add garlic and chili pieces and sauté for a minute
  8. Add the cooked noodles and soy sauce and turn the heat up to medium high and sauté for 2-3 min
  9. Add in the fresh basil. Turn the heat off and give it a stir and serve hot

Serves: 2

 

Inspiration source:

Chinese Chili Oil

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp Sichuan peppercorns
  • 4 tbsp Korean red pepper powder, also know as Gochugaru
  • 2 tbsp white sesame seeds
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 cup grapeseed oil
  • 1 small piece of ginger

Method:

  1. Crush the peppercorns in a pestle and mortar
  2. In a small pan, add the sesame oil, crushed peppercorns, red pepper powder, sesame seeds, star anise and bay leaf and keep aside
  3. In a separate saucepan, heat the grapeseed oil over medium high heat for about 5-6 min
  4. Add the ginger piece to the oil and when the ginger turns golden brown (2-3 minutes), remove it and turn the heat off
  5. Carefully pour the hot oil into the pan with the chili sauce dry ingredients
  6. When the chili oil has cooled down, transfer it into a glass jar
  7. Use this chili oil for making Chinese vegetable stir-fry, noodles, etc.

Inspiration source:

Ven Pongal

Ingredients:

For Ven Pongal

  • 1 cup rice such as Jasmin rice or sona masuri rice. You need starchy glutinous rice, so don’t use Basmati rice
  • 1 cup moong dal
  • 2 tbsp ghee
  • 1/2 tsp asafetida
  • 1 inch ginger piece, finely chopped
  • 1 green chili, cut in 4 pieces
  • 6 cups water. Ven Pongal is supposed to be soft and hence more water than usual
  • 1 tsp salt or to taste

For Tempering

  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 1 1/2 tsp pepper corns
  • 2 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 15-20 cashews, broken into pieces
  • 15-20 curry leaves

Method:

Ven Pongal

  1. Dry roast rice and dal over medium heat for a couple of minutes. Dal should not change its color. Once you feel the nice aroma of the dal turn off the heat and rinse it in water for a couple of times
  2. Put instant pot in sauté mode. If using pressure cooker, put on medium heat
  3. Melt ghee, add asafetida, finely chopped ginger, green chili pieces and sauté for 30 seconds
  4. Add the rice and dal, mix well and sauté for a minute
  5. Then add water, salt and start cooking. If you are using Instant Pot, cook in a mode that cooks for 10 minutes under pressure. If using pressure cooker, cook for 4 whistles
  6. When you are able to safely open, start preparing the tempering

Tempering

  1. Put your tempering pan on medium heat
  2. Melt ghee and roast cashews in it. Once the cashews turns golden, add pepper corns, cumin seeds, curry leaves and mix for 30 seconds and then turn off the heat
  3. Add the tempering to the pongal and mix well. Feel free to add more ghee at the end to get nicer aroma and taste!
  4. Serve Ven pongal hot with chutney, sambar and vada!

Serves: 4

Inspiration source:

https://www.steffisrecipes.com/2017/04/pongal-recipe-ven-pongal-recipe.html

Venkatesh Bhat makes Pongal Gotsu | pongal recipe in Tamil | Ven pongal recipe | Gotsu for pongal – YouTube

Coconut Butternut Squash Soup

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium butternut squash
  • 1 cup broccolini
  • 1 cup cremini mushrooms
  • 1 medium carrot
  • 1 onion
  • 3 large garlic cloves
  • 3 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp pink salt or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp crushed black pepper
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tbsp cane sugar
  • 2 cubes of Knorr vegetarian vegetable bouillon
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 400 ml can coconut milk (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup dried shredded coconut

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375F
  2. Carefully slice the squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Then, place the squash onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper skin side up
  3. Bake in the oven for 35-45min depending on the size of the squash. When the thickest part is fork tender, it’s done. Let it cool for about 10 min
  4. Chop about 1/2 cup worth of broccolini into small pieces and thinly slice about 1/2 cup worth of cremini mushrooms
  5. Dice the carrot and onion. Coarsely chop the garlic
  6. Carefully peel the skin from the tender butternut squash and scoop aside 2 1/2 cups worth
  7. Heat up a stock pot to medium heat. Add the coconut oil followed by the carrot, onion, and garlic
  8. Season with the pepper and 1 tbsp of salt. Sauté for 5-8 min
  9. Add in bouillon cubes, the thyme and sauté for another few minutes. Add in the squash and the cane sugar. Sauté for another minute
  10. Add in water and coconut milk (set aside a little bit for garnish)
  11. Turn up the heat to medium high, cover, and bring it to a boil
  12. Transfer the soup to the blender or use a stick blender if you have one. Blend on medium / high until somewhat smooth
  13. Pour the soup back into the pot and cover to keep it nice and hot
  14. Heat up a frying pan on medium heat. Add in the shredded coconut
  15. Toast for a few minutes until golden brown. Set aside
  16. Wipe out the pan with a paper towel and place back on medium heat
  17. Sauté the broccolini for 3-4 min. Add in the mushrooms and a pinch of salt. Sauté for another 3-4 min
  18. Place some of the veggies in the middle of your serving bowl. Then, pour around it 1 cup of soup
  19. Sprinkle over some toasted coconut. Add some fresh cracked pepper. Drizzle some olive oil and drizzle some of the coconut milk
  20. Serve hot with your favorite bread

Serves: 4 – 6

 

Inspiration source:

Dahi Baingan (Eggplan curry in yogurt)

Ingredients:

  • 3 tsp oil
  • 6-8 small baingan / brinjal / eggplants, cut in quarters
  • 1 tsp cumin / jeera
  • 1 bay leaf / tej patta
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 2 tsp besan / gram flour
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder / haldi
  • 1 tsp kashmiri red chili powder / lal mirch powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 1 tsp salt or to taste
  • 1 tbsp kasuri methi / dry fenugreek leaves, crushed
  • 2 tbsp coriander leaves, finely chopped

Method:

  1. In a pan heat 2 tsp oil, add the cut eggplants, 1/2 tsp salt and cook covered till soft and light brown in color, gently sautéing every once in a while
  2. Keep aside the cooked eggplants
  3. To the same pan, add 1 tsp oil, cumin seeds, bay leaf and asafetida. Sauté for 5-10 seconds till cumin seeds pop
  4. Add chopped onion, ginger garlic paste and sauté well for 2-3 minutes
  5. Add gram flour and roast on low flame for 4-5 minutes
  6. Add turmeric powder, chili powder, coriander powder and garam masala and sauté for a minute
  7. Add 1/2 cup water and 1 cup whisked yogurt, keeping the flame on low. Stir continuously till the yogurt is mixed well
  8. Add the cooked eggplants, 1/2 tsp salt and mix well, then cover and simmer for 3-4 minutes
  9. Add crushed kasuri methi and coriander leaves and mix well
  10. Serve hot with any Indian bread such as millet roti, chapati or kulcha

Serves: 4

 

Inspiration source:

https://hebbarskitchen.com/dahi-baingan-recipe-dahi-baigana/

Soda Bread with Dried Fruits

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • extra flour for dusting
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp butter, cold, diced
  • 250 ml thick butter milk, cold (churned full-fat yogurt with some added water)
  • Zest from 2 oranges
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
  • 1/2 cup dried fruits such as golden raisins, chopped dried apricots, chopped dried orange

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
  2. In a small bowl, combine cold buttermilk, orange zest and give it quick whisk and put aside
  3. In a bowl, toss the raisins with 1 tbsp flour to coat and put aside
  4. In a large bowl mix flour, sugar, baking soda and salt
  5. Add in diced butter and mix well for about 2-3 minutes
  6. Pour in the buttermilk mixture and mix until just combined
  7. Add pecans and raisins and mix well for 10 seconds
  8. Plop the very wet batter onto a floured surface. Give it a light kneading and shape it into a ball
  9. Place the dough on a parchment lined baking sheet
  10. Score an ‘X’ on the surface by cutting it at the middle in both the directions… make full cut through the depth of the dough
  11. Do not overwork your dough and put it straight in the oven (lower rack) after making a cross cut. No need to rest the dough
  12. Bake for about 40-45 min until a skewer comes out clean
  13. Tap the base of your loaf for that hollow sound to ensure it has cooked through

Serves: 8-10

 

Inspiration source: