A delicious salad

3 Jan

There isn’t a name for this one but I decided to experiment a little in the kitchen with a lot of vegetables that I had bits of which remaining. Here’s what I did:

  • Boiled some chopped (small squarish chunks) of sweet potato, green peas and baby corn
  • Chopped up small pieces of green onion, 1 tomato and some parsley mixed together
  • Mixed the 2 together
  • Crumbled up all the remaining tofu and sprinkled on top of salad
  • Melted some vegan Gouda cheese in the microwave and added to it. I did 30 seconds at full power, but 15 seconds is probably enough. It started smoking inside the microwave.
  • Added 2 cups (lid of the oil bottle :)) of canola oil. Maybe I should get a small jar of olive oil once I move to a nicer apartment some time.
  • 2 avocados chopped up.
  • Salt, pepper and chilly flakes to season
  • Lemon juice to further season, but it hardly showed up. Maybe vinegar next time

Tasted quite nice, if you ask me – I need to master the addition of the exact amount of spice though, so you get all the flavours.

I mean, my food usually tastes good but I wish I got all the flavours through every time.

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Eggplant Bell Pepper salad

24 Dec

This one is another from the Veg Times book which is making me experiment a lot these days. This one was a simple one though.

Roast chopped up Eggplant for 30 minutes at around 400 F. Generally, don’t fuss too much about the temperature when you roast – just know when something is changing colour, it is usually close to being cooked. A good way to know this is to always cook something on a stove top where it is much easier to figure things out. Then you can switch on an oven light and look in, without opening the oven – to check colour change. Each time you open the door, the temperature drops by 25F ..ish… and will take longer to cook. So keep that to a minimum.

Roast red bell peppers till they are black on all sides, with tinges of red still showing. Mix both. Cook some rice separately, mix the above with the rice.

Separately, chop up some green onions, garlic, parsley and add that too. Mix and toss well. Add lemon juice, salt, pepper and any other sauce that you like. Enjoy.

This was a ‘grill’ recipe as per the book, but I don’t have a grill, so er… I roasted it instead. Always remember, while you might get unique flavors while cooking a certain way – it is almost always possible to cook the same dish in a different way. The time and heat might vary, but technically it is always possible.

So if you *want* to definitely eat a certain dish, but don’t have an oven, steam cook it, if you don’t have a cooker, consider frying it, if don’t want oil or butter stir fry it. And so on. Keep thinking 🙂

Dry Alu Bhindi

15 Dec

Had some ladyfinger left from the other day. So chopped up half a potato, stir fried it with salt, turmeric, coriander powder and ginger-garlic paste. Once it was 3/4 cooked I added the baby lady fingers to it and cooked it on a low flame for some more time.

The potato got burnt a little bit, because it had been on the stove for too long. Maybe I should have added the lady finger when it was 1/2 cooked instead. Anyway, hopefully it tastes good 🙂

Zucchini Tofu Salad

15 Dec

I’m getting along making all the recipes from the Vegetarian Times magazines I have. This one again came out really well. The original recipe called for feta cheese to be used but so much of the cheese here has enzymes (animal or plant dunno) added to it – that I no longer have the patience to dig through each product and mail companies about them.

So I looked up replacements for feta cheese. One blog said Tofu, so tofu it was :). Here’s the ingredients I used and a brief summary of how I did things.  Some lemon juice, grated lemon zest (which is just the skin of the lemon), some garlic finely chopped, some oil to mix everything together were all mixed to sort of create a dressing of sorts.

Peel the zucchini into long thin strips using a vegetable peeler till you’ve had enough. Chop some onion and also some green onions into little pieces and mix it with the zucchini. A good guide I use is to see if I can see onion pieces as I turn the zucchini around, sticking to it. If most zucchini pieces actually have onion, that’s enough – you want the zucchini to be dominant, not onion.

Add the dressing to the vegetables and mix well. Add some mint and parsley, chopped or as a sauce (I had some pesto sauce left over) so I used that. Mix with the rest.

Marinate it overnight or even 2 days in the fridge in a bowl. Crumble some tofu and sprinkle it on top till its all covered. Mix again. Sprinkle a little chilly flakes on top if you want it a little spicy.

If its not sour enough, feel free to add some more lemon juice on top or maybe some vinegar if you like the smell. Salt and black pepper and any other dressing is optional.

Dahi Bhindi

10 Dec

Made this recipe almost exactly like aunty made here. She’s such a wonderful teacher, I love listening to all her videos and learning from her site.

The only thing different was that I didn’t have any sauf (fennel seeds) powder and I used a little too much cumin. But that apart it came out really well. Been a long time since I made ladyfinger/okra. Was a nice change from my usual stuff.

Zucchini and Sweet Pea soup

20 Nov

This one was another great recipe from Vegetarian Times. That magazine subscription has been so worth it :).

Chop some onions up and lightly fry them till they brown up. Add some sliced Zucchini to it and keep turning it around in the pan, till the Zucchini shrinks and becomes softer. Add some vegetable stock and some green peas to it. Boil it all at medium heat till the flavours spread across all the vegetables. Take it off the stove and let it cool.

Add some mint leaves to this mixture and let it sit for a while so the mint flavours are absorbed. I just used some of the sauce I used in this recipe that I had left over and it worked really well.

Add a little salt and pepper to it and blend the whole mixture after it has cooled down. Don’t use the mixer when things are very hot, the mixer just produces more heat and if the temperature rises beyond a limit – bad things might happen to the equipment or you ;).

That’s it. Add a little water to adjust the consistency to the level that you’d like. Serve and eat. It was really delicious, so I do recommend you give it a try.

Broccoli, Garlic bread-crumbs and Pasta

20 Nov

Very simple recipe here really. Roasted a little garlic in a little oil, roasted Brocolli florets in an oven for about 20 minutes and mixed the 2 together. Added a little black and red pepper to the pasta, some of my olive butter, some additional walnuts and mixed all of it up. Tastes quite good.

The recipe also said to add breadcrumbs. I microwaved a few slices of bread till they were really crisp and crumbled them up into bread crumbs and sprinkled them over the pasta. So if you have breadcrumbs, definitely use them.

A mistake I made though with the breadcrumbs was to over toast the bread which made it black, and hence make all the bread crumbs really bitter. I had to throw out most of it. So if you do use a microwave to do this, check every minute or even a little lesser – if the bread is getting burnt. Other alternatives to this are to buy ready-made bread crumbs, or toast the bread on a pan on a stove top, that lets you see it browning. Crush the bread in a zip lock bag or any other method that will ensure the crumbs do not fall out.

Make sure though that you cook the pasta properly and its very soft, I undercooked mine just a little which meant that it wasn’t as tender as I’d like it to be.