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Archive for January, 2008

Teriyaki Salmon

Two fish recipes back to back,goes to say that I am a fish-lover. Maybe its in my genes.However like all Indians settled in US I miss the oh-so-Indian fish,Ravas,Paplet,Surmai,Bombil,Murdushya to name a few.Growing up in Mumbais concrete jungle the great plus was that you got fresh fish delivered right to your doorstep. “Surmai,Kolambi,Paplet ghey”,the fisherworman would shout while going door to door. “Tai ghe na ga,ekdam taaje aahet bagh!!”(“Sister buy some,they are very fresh”) she would add. She would then slice and dice them right at your door step. Ya it was a bloody sight,but the thought of having fried fish or the fish curry later in the day would make you salivate nonetheless.

Here in the US I have learned to use only certain fish with certain recipes. Years ago I realised trying to fry tuna filet Indian style was not such a good idea.So here is a list of the fish I usually use

Shrimp,Prawns– usually breaded pan fried or in wet curry or a semi dry curry
Catfish,Flouder,Tilapia– flaky white fish used mostly in curries and pan fried
Salmon,Tuna– meaty red meat fish -less used in Indian curries,but work well for grills,marinated oven bake or even fish patties.

Salmon is a excellent source of omega-3 fatty acid which is good for your heart. Its a very fishy fish,if you know what i mean and often needs some kind of a marinade to induce a flavor.Without further ado presenting

Lemon Crusted Teriyaki Salmon

Teriyaki Salmon

Ingredients
2 salmon filets-no skin (I bought this bag of individually packaged ones from Walmart)
Mrs Dash teriyaki sauce
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 Bread Slices (I used whole wheat)
zest of one lemon
2 garlic cloves chopped
1/2 tbsp butter
1 stem of scallion
olive oil
salt and pepper

Method

  1. Marinade the salmon in mixture of Mrs. Dash teriyaki sauce and soy sauce overnight in refrigerator.
  2. In a food processor, drop the bread slices,garlic,butter and lemon zest and process till fine crumbs
  3. Heat olive oil in a oven proof pan. When hot slide the salmon filets and cook on one side for 3-4 mins.
  4. Flip the filets and then spread the bread mixture on the other side and move the pan under the broiler for couple of minutes till the crust browns.
  5. If you want pour the rest of the marinade around the filets,before broiling, for some side sauce
  6. When salmon is done,garnish will scallions.

Super duper flavor. Though you couldn’t taste the lemon zest in the crust since the teriyaki flavor was overpowering,the crispy crust was yummy.I would try this lemon zest crust with other salmon recipes.

Our meal was teriyaki salmon with garlic-spinach and some quick-fried rice.
Squeeze some lemon and enjoy that salmon!!…I say

Our Dinner


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Kerala Fish Curry

It is an irony that being a Goan my first post about Fish Curry is a Kerala style and not the often relished Goan style. However I have had this recipe filed for many months now and it was time to give it a try and send it as an entry to the RCI-Kerala event hosted by Curry Bazaar

Browsing through Kerala style fish curryI found that Keralites use a unique ingredient in their curries called Kudam-puli which imparts the sour flavor to the fish curry. Us Goans on the other hand use kokum (or Amsul as its called in Marathi) for this same purpose. Mishmash has a picture of this fruit ,but by first looks I think the two could very well be related.Any suggestions ?

Kerala Fish Curry
Ingredients

2 filets of tilapia
1 medium onion -diced
1 inch ginger
1 clove garlic
1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds
7-8 curry leaves
1/2 cup coconut
kokum (soaked in water for few mins)
chilli powder
turmeric

Method

  1. Cut the filets into bite size pieces and marinate these in turmeric ,chilli powder and salt
  2. Grind to paste half of the onion,ginger,garlic,coconut,chilli powder,turmeric,4-5 fenugreek seeds and curry leaves
  3. Heat oil.Make “tadka” of mustard seed and fenugreek seeds. Next,saute the onions and lastly add curry leaves.Fry till onion is translucent
  4. Add the ground paste, followed by the soaked kokum.
  5. Add turmeric,chilli powder and salt to taste
  6. Add half cup water and let the curry boil
  7. When the curry boils drop the pieces of fish into the curry and let it cook for 5-6 mins.Be careful to not stir too often because this will break the pieces.
  8. Service with rice or chapatis

Initially I was apprehensive about the use of curry leaves in a fish curry,but I was wrong. The curry leaves and fenugreek impart the dish its unique flavor. DH devoured this dish.

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Layered Bake

My mom loves trying new recipes and every so often while on the phone she will share a new recipe she tried and how she now has dads stamp of approval for it.:)
On my visits back home i like to take little knickknacks or everyday food items we eat in here for everyone in family to try. One such item is prepackaged mashed potatoes. This year I bought variety of flavors like garlic-butter,chives and regular to take home. My parents loved it. “Packaged Ukadlele Mashed Batate” (“packaged boiled mashed potatoes”) they said excitedly. My mom said that on days when they need a light-dinner they love to have these with some toasted bread and side of tomato soup.

However my mom found more than one way to use these.One such recipe was this Layered Potato-Spinach-Egg bake she tried where she layers mashed potatoes,cheese,spinach puree and tops it with cheese and egg. Yumm i thought!!!

In turn,I re-did the recipe to use some leftover boiled potato and spinach-mushroom I had (BTW spinach mushroom recipe is much like spinach paneer(palak paneer) ,just replace paneer with mushroom)

Layered Bake

Ingredients

1 boiled potato-mashed
1 /2 cup spinach-mushroom (or cooked spinach puree)
1 egg
1/2 cup cheese
salt and pepper

Method

  1. Preheat over to 350 F
  2. Mash the boiled potato and mix in some freshly ground pepper and salt.
  3. Whish up one egg with some salt and pepper
  4. Take a ramekin and spray and even coating of cooking oil
  5. Layer the mashed potatoes on the bottom.
  6. spread the spinach puree or palak-mushroom or palak-paneer
  7. pour the whisked egg on top
  8. Sprikle cheese
  9. Bake for 20 mins on 350F

Verdict:
Super Good. I never expected spinach and potatoes would go so well with egg. This is definately a quick-fix meal or breakfast item.

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Virginia Beach

One of our favourite family friendly beaches. Easily accessible via the interstates from north or west.

Hotels
Hotel accommodations at VA Beach vary from season to season. Our latest discovery was the very eclectic Ocean Beach Club resort this winter. The minimal you can get is a one bedroom suite which includes a kitchen,a separate living room,a bedroom and a huge bath with dual sinks. Additionally they have 2 and 3 bedroom suites. You have the option to choose a ocean view or a resort view(street view). The rooms are very clean and the kitchen is fully loaded. And ocean view room for 80$/night was a steal. I hear that the summer rates can be anywhere upto 200$ but for a family vacation this is a great choice.

Restaurants

Pi-zzeria is our all time favorite. A brick oven style gourmet pizzeria,their Chicken Teriyaki Pizza is to die for. Raven is another restaurant we have frequented.Their crabcake sandwich and clam chowder are delish and didn’t burn a hole in pocket at 7-8$

Things To Do

  • In the winter the entire boardwalk from 2nd st to 34 st is lit up with Holiday Lights. It costs about 10$ per car and they give you a Christmas carols cd to listen to while you drive. Additionally ,a horse carriage ride through here can be very romantic.
  • In the summer, what else but the beach? There is para-sailing,dolphin watch tours and all things BEACH-TOWN
  • Also watch out for dolphins all season long.

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Dal Makhani

Dals are nutritious,easy and simple to cook. Its interesting how in Indian cooking you could dish out a thousand odd recipes with just one ingredient. Dont belive me,see JFI:Toor Dal roudup by Linda of Out Of Garden. My MIL gifted me a series of Tarla Dalal books. These are tiny flip through books but dont let their size trick you.These are packed with amazingly quick and easy recipes.This weekend I tried one such recipes from her book called Dals. The ever appealing Dal Makhani. This is probably the most commonly ordered vegeterian dish on a Punjabi restaurnat’s menu.

Whole black urad dal is a very uncommon ingredient in Maharashtrian(CKP) and Goan(GSB) cooking,though white urad dal is equally common.However whole black urad is very popular in North India.Since I didnt stock this in my pantry a special trip to the Indian grocery store was inevitable.

Whole urad dal is also known to be warm(“ushna”) for the digestive system.I guess this could be one of the reasons for its wide use in the cold-north-india.Overeating however, can even cause flatulence (gas),not a good sign. Consider yourself warned 😉

( Placeholder for picture)

Ingredients
1/2 cup whole urad(whole black lentils)
2 tbsp rajma (kidney beans) (Sub: Canned Red Kidney Beans,rinsed with water)
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 green chillis,slit
1″ cinnamon stick
2 cloves
3 cardamoms ( Sub: with cardamon powder)
1/2 cup finely chopped onions
1/2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
red chilli powder
pinch of turmeric powder
3/4 cup tomato puree (Sub: pureed canned diced tomatoes)
1/2 cup cream (Sub: light whipping cream)
3 tbsp butter for cooking ( Do not use oil,it spoils the taste)
garam masala (optional)
salt

  1. Wash and soak the urad dal and rajma overnight. If substituting rajma with canned red kidney beans,er you do not need to pre-soak the beans.However, make sure your rinse the canned beans under water before use.
  2. Combine the dal with 2 cups of water and pressure cook the dals till the dals are overcooked.Whisk till the dal is mashed
  3. Heat butter in a pan and add cumin seeds
  4. When cumin seeds crackle,add green chillis,cinnamon,cloves and green cardamom.
  5. When the above crackle,add onion and ginger garlic paste and saute till onions are brown
  6. Add chilli powder,turmeric and tomato pulp and cook till oil separates from the tomato gravy
  7. Add dal mixture , some water and salt and simmer for 10-15 mins. This dal is of a thick consistentcy,so do not over-dilute. Add garam masala(optional).
  8. Add cream and mix well
  9. Garmish with cilantro and butter

The end product was an instant hit with DH and a close friend . I think the kidney beans are an important ingredient,since they add that fiber texture to the often slimy urad dal. DO NOT skip this ingredient.Watch out for more black urad dal recipes this winter !!

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Happy New Year!!

Happy New Year

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