Friday, September 28, 2012

Chilli fish (gravy)

Indo-chinese recipes are my all time favorite. Whenever I want to take time off from my regular dishes and do something special for dinner or lunch I opt for Indo-chinese food without blinking an eye. Usually it will be a Manchurian and fried rice. But this time I wanted to do a seafood special. Chilli fish is the first thing came to my mind. We usually go for chilli fish with fried rice/noodles when we do a take-away. Somehow I thought it takes a lot of time to prepare it and hence never attempted to give it a try. Yes, it took a bit of my time but it wasn't so complicated as I thought. I made it for a Saturday dinner and served with veggie stir fry noodles.

Things you'll need:
Fish fillets - 2 (tilapia or any firm fish)
Soy sauce - 2tbsp + 2tsp
Chilli sauce - 1tbsp+1tsp
Corn flour -  2 tbsp
Salt - as needed
Food color (orange or red) - a pinch (optional)
Garlic cloves - 3, finely chopped
Onion - 1, cubed or slit lengthwise
Bell pepper (green or mixed colors) - 1 cup, cubed or slit lengthwise
Tomato paste - 1 tsp
Green onions - 2, finely chopped

Oil - for deep frying the fish and sauteing the vegetables

Yield - 2 Servings


Cut the fillets into small pieces. Mix the cornflour, 2 tsp of soy sauce, 1 tsp of chilli sauce, salt and food color (optional) in a bowl.

Coat the fish pieces with the corn flour mixture and deep fry them in small batches. Let them sit on a paper towel.

Heat a little oil in a pan, saute the onion, garlic and bell pepper, uncovered in medium low, until the vegetables are cooked but little crunchy. Add the tomato paste, 2 tbsp of soy sauce, 1 tbsp of chilli sauce and salt. Bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to low and cook the sauce for a couple of minutes. Add the fillets, mix it well, switch off the stove and garnish with green onions.

Serve it with fried rice or noodles

Use dark sesame oil for more authentic effect. You could also use some toasted sesame seeds for garnishing.
If you prefer a thicker gravy, mix 2 tsp of cornflour in  1/4 cup of  water and stir into the boiling gravy. The gravy will thicken in couple of minutes. 

Monday, September 10, 2012

Crochet jewelry

My daughter is changing school this fall. It is the most sad feeling to leave your old school and friends behind and move on. It was almost like a second home for my kid. She loved it there. The teachers were so kind and patient with her and all the kids studying there. I even would wish sometimes we had a school life like hers. I really should appreciate their efforts to bring out the best in each and every child. They certainly did more than I could have done. I wanted to give a small gift of appreciation to the teachers on the last school day for my daughter. I could have easily brought something in a store, but I wanted to put some effort in making the gift myself, to respect their efforts. So I chose to do some crochet jewelry. I got some satin and thread chains and fish hooks, and crochet thread and viewed a lot of patterns to finally come up with these jewelry


This is a very simple pattern, but it took me a little while to master as I am new to crocheting with crochet threads which are much thinner than the regular yarns. I used a size 10 thread and 2.5 mm hook.


This is also a beautiful pattern as the previous one. With the same thread and hook, I made the pendant and earrings in less than an hour.


These bracelets were made with my own pattern. I just started blank and started inventing the pattern on the go. It might not be a masterpiece but a decent one for a beginner. I used 4 ply yarn and 5 mm hook for this pattern.