Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Crochet dress

Couldnt wait to post this dress I crocheted for my toddler girl. As soon as I finished crocheting this dress I made her wear this and took a few snaps so that I could post it right away. I will try to post the patterns as soon as possible. The pattern is designed by me. Until you wait for the pattern you could take a look at the dress..


Mushroom Biriyani

For me, cooking vegetarian is very hard. Actually it's not the cooking that is hard but deciding what to cook really is. If we are having some guests at home, I would be very happy if they are non-vegetarians. Because I could get away with one chicken curry or fish curry and rice. If they are vegetarians, I am doomed. I would always like to do something unusual for my guests. So I try to  think away from the usual recipes. One of the lifesavers is mushroom biriyani. It's a very easy, quick and yummy recipe, I love to make so that I could finish it off in minutes and turn my focus to other items like appetizers, desserts etc., I always make my pulao or biriyani rice in my rice cooker, but if you prefer to fry the rice and vegetables separately and then cook it in the rice cooker, its ok to that also. Taste dosen't change.

Things you'll need:
Basmati rice - 2 cups
Onion - 2, cut lengthwise
Tomato - 1, cut lengthwise
Mushrooms - 1 cup, cubed (I used button mushrooms)
Capsicum or bell pepper - 1, cut lengthwise
Ginger garlic paste - 1 tbsp
Green chillies -  3 or 4 according to your spice tolerance
Mint leaves (optional) - a bunch
Coriander leaves - a handful
Lemon - 1/2
Whole garam masala - Cinnamon - 1 inch stick, cloves - 5, Cardamom - 2, Bay leaves - 2
Chilli powder - 1 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Salt - as needed
Oil -2 tbsp
Water - 4 cups

Yield - Serves 3 to 4 persons


Step 1:
Soak the rice for 15 mins.

Step 2:
Heat oil in the rice cooker or a pan, add the whole garam masala. When the cloves crackle, add the onions, fry till translucent, add green chillies and ginger garlic paste. Fry till the raw smell of ginger garlic is gone, then add the tomatoes, capsicum and mushroom and mint leaves. Fry until the raw flavor of the vegetables is gone, then add the turmeric, chilli and coriander powders.

Add rice and fry until rice is well coated with the mixture. Add water and salt. If frying in a separate pan, transfer the contents to the rice cooker. Squeeze the lemon juice into rice mixture.

Step 4:
When done, garnish with coriander leaves and serve with raita and your favorite curry.

You can also cook this in the pressure cooker. Cook in medium heat for two whistles.

Stir-fry Noodles

My daughter is a noodle lover. Although she is a picky eater, we can trust her with noodles every time we go out to eat or having lunch/dinner at a friend's place. From instant noodles to authentic Chinese noodles she likes all kinds of them. If they don't have vegetables..good. If they are spicy..great. If they have chicken...wow!!. But somehow she doesn't appreciate the noodles I make for her at home or for her school lunch. I seriously don't know what's going wrong. I used the same ingredients they mentioned in the chowmein recipes, used thin noodles which she used to like in restaurants, used less vegetables, sometimes none. But she eats only a bit, which I would have forced into her mouth. I am going to still try all noodle recipes I could get and win her appreciation someday. Below is my version of the stir fry noodles recipe. But I would really like to know if someone has a different version of the stir fry noodles to make it taste like those in restaurants. 

Things you'll need:
Chowmein noodles - 1 pack
Carrots - 1/2 cup, diced
Cabbage - 1/2 cup, diced
Capsicum - 1/2, cut lengthwise
Garlic - 5 cloves, minced
Soy sauce - 2 tbsp
Oyster sauce - 1 tbsp
Stir fry sauce - 1 tbsp
Salt - as needed (go easy on the salt since the sauces have salt in them)
Pepper - 1 tsp, crushed or coarsely ground
Oil - 1 tbsp

Yield - Serves 2-3 persons


Step 1:
Cook the noodles according to package directions. Drain, mix in some oil, and let dry on a plate.
Heat oil in a wok or large pan. Stir fry the vegetables, garlic with salt and pepper, until the vegetables are almost cooked but crunchy.

Step 2:
Add the noodles and stir fry the noodles mixing the vegetables and noodles. Mix the sauces in a bowl by adding little water. Add them to the noodle mixture and stir fry until the noodles are dry and the sauces are well absorbed.

Serve hot with your favorite side.

Tip: Before adding the noodles you could add a scrambled egg to add extra flavor. You could also make it more spicy by adding some chilli sauce.