Thursday, December 31, 2015

Roasted Whole Fish with Vermouth and Tomatoes

Trout or Bronzino - 1 whole fish, cleaned and gutted ( around a pound or less in size)                      
Lemon - 1/2 thinly sliced
Garlic - 4 or 5 cloves, crushed or sliced
Olive Oil - 2 tbsp
Cherry Tomatoes - a few
Shallots - 2, cut into wedges 
Dry Vermouth / Dy White Wine - around 1/4 cup 
Dry Thyme - a sprinkle
Any Fresh herbs - a handful, I used cilantro 
Green Chili - a couple, chopped or you can use freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 450 F.
Season the fish with salt and pepper.

Stuff the fish with some lemon slices, 2 cloves crushed garlic, a few herb sprigs and green chilies.

Drizzle the outside of the fish with olive oil; season.

Pour 1 tbsp olive oil in a large roasting pan. Add the tomatoes, shallots, some lemon slices, vermouth, dry thyme and the remaining crushed garlic; toss. Arrange the fish on top.

Roast until the fish is brown and crispy and opaque and the tomatoes are soft, 15 to 20 minutes.

Divide the tomatoes among plates. Using a serving fork and serving spoon, carefully lift the fillets away from the bones; arrange on top of the tomatoes.

Adapted from

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Egg Korma

Poppy Seeds - 1 tbsp
Sesame Seeds - 1 tbsp
Slivered Almonds - 2 tbsp
Broken Raw Cashewnuts - 2 tbsp
Water - 1/2 cup

Yellow Onion - 1/2, chopped
Cumin Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Whole Garam Masala - 1 cinnamon stick, 4 cloves, 1 bay leaf , 1 cardamom
Ginger Garlic Paste - 4 garlic cloves and one inch ginger, grated
Coriander Powder - 1 tsp
Cumin Powder - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric Powder - 1/2 tsp
Cayenne Pepper - 1/2 tsp
Tomato Puree - 1/2 tbsp or 1grated tomato
Yogurt - 2 tbsp, beaten well with some water

Boiled Eggs - 4
Turmeric and Cayenne Pepper - 1/4 tsp

Cilantro for garnishing

Boil almonds, cashew nuts, sesame seeds and poppy seeds in half cup of water for 15 min.

After 15 minutes, remove from heat and blend it in a blender with fried onions into a fine paste.

In hot oil add bay leaf, cloves, cardamom and cinnamon.

When it sizzles add cumin seeds, ginger garlic paste, tomato puree. Cook for a minute.

Then add the blended paste, tomato puree, coriander powder, cumin powder, turmeric, cayenne powder, salt and mix it well. Cook on low heat for a few minutes. If it starts to stick to the bottom, sprinkle a little water.

Now lower the heat and add beaten curd and let the mixture cook for 25 min with a lid on it.

In a separate pan, heat oil. Apply salt, a little turmeric and red cayenne to the boiled eggs. Add the boiled eggs to the oil. When the eggs sizzle take out the eggs and add them to the gravy. Remove from heat.

Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve hot.

Pumpkin Peanut Butter Dog Biscuit

Pumpkin Puree - 1 cup (use 100% pure pumpkin)
Peanut Butter - 4 tbsp.
Egg - 1, (can also use half cup pumpkin puree and 2 eggs)
Flour - 11/2 cups (I used an equal mix of brown rice flour and whole wheat flour)
Coconut Oil / Butter - 1 tsp

Heat oven to 350F.

Mix pumpkin puree and peanut butter together. Add egg.

Now mix in the flour so that the mix forms a sticky ball. Adjust the flour as required.

Sprinkle some rice flour on the rolling surface. Apply the coconut oil / butter around the dough and roll into half inch thick. Cut into small desired shape. Transfer into parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Bake for around 20 to 25 minutes till the cookies start browning.

Cool completely and store in an airtight container.

Dudley, patiently waiting for the cookies to cool

Friday, November 27, 2015

Pumpkin Muffins for Dog

Flour - 12/3 cup ( I used a mix of whole wheat and brown rice flour)
Baking Soda - 1 tsp
Cinnamon - 1/2 tsp
Molasses / Brown Sugar - 2 tbsp. (It can be skipped)
100% Pure Pumpkin Puree - 13/4 cup
Oil - 1/2 cup ( I used about 2 tbsp peanut oil)
Eggs - 2, lightly beaten
Water - 1/3 cup

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease 3 mini muffin tins or one mini muffin and one regular muffin tin with oil or butter.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs and add oil, pumpkin puree and molasses .

Sieve flour and baking soda over the bowl. Add cinnamon and mix well. As needed add water until the mixture is of the consistency of mashed potatoes.

Drop spoonful of mixture into muffin cups, filling 2/3rd of the way.

Bake for around 20 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center of the muffin comes out clean.

Cool completely and store in an airtight container for 5 days in the refrigerator.

The pictures here are not so pretty, but my dog loved them.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Green Papaya Curry with Mustard

Raw Papaya – half, peeled and cut into small cubes
Potato – 1 small, peeled and cut into cubes (optional)
Mustard Seeds
Turmeric – 1/4 tsp
Red Chili Powder – a pinch
Coconut Oil – 1 tbsp
Mustard Seeds –1 ½ tsp
Hing - 2 pinches
Curry Leaves – 4
Green Chili – 3
Red Chili - 1
Urad Dal - 1 tbsp.
Turmeric - a pinch
Water - 1 cup
Cilantro for garnishing

Take 1 tsp of mustard seeds and using a mortar and pestle make a powder. Keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan. Temper with 1/2 tsp mustard seeds and hing. Add the urad dal, green chili, red chili, curry leaves and fry for a few minutes till the urad dal begins to change color.

Add urad dal, turmeric, salt and water. Mix well and cover and cook till the papaya pieces are tender.

Add the mustard powder and cook for a few minutes more. Garnish with cilantro and serve with steamed rice and dal.
Adapted from

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Steamed Modak

Rice Flour - 1 cup
Water - 2 cups
Ghee - 2 tbsp
Salt - a pinch

For filling :
Fresh Coconut - 1, grated
Gur / Jaggery - around 1/2 cup, depending on how sweet you want
Poppy Seeds - 1 tsp
Ghee - 1 tbsp
Water - 1 tbsp

Roast the poppy seeds in a heavy bottomed pan for a couple of minutes. Add jaggery and a tbsp of water and let it melt.

Now add the grated coconut and 1 tbsp of ghee and cook on medium low till the mixture comes together, around 10 to 15 minutes. Check for sweetness and add more jaggery if required.

Remove from heat and cool the filling.

Bring 2 cups of water to boil. Add salt and 2 tbsp of ghee. Add the rice powder and mix well. Remove from heat and transfer to a plate. Immediately knead to make a soft ball. Do not let the mix cool down.

Make small balls, flatten them, fill about a tbsp of coconut filling and close the cover and shape them.

Steam in a steamer / rice cooker for 15 minutes.

Serve immediately with dollops of ghee on top.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Mushroom, Arugula & Gruyere Omelette

Organic Eggs - 4
Water - 2 tsp
Olive Oil / Butter - 1 tbsp.
Green Chili - 2 (optional), finely minced
Baby Arugula - a handful
Gruyere Cheese - a few pieces
Cooked Mushrooms - 1/4 cup (optional)

Break the eggs in a bowl. Add 2 tsp water, salt and pepper and beat until just fluffy. Do not overbeat. If using green chili, add it to the mix.

Heat a cast iron skillet. Add the olive oil and pour the beaten eggs and cook on low flame.

Once the eggs are no longer runny, spread mushrooms, baby arugula and gruyere cheese on top and fold into half. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Shrimp Pad Thai

Brown Rice Pad Thai - a handful (can reduce the quantity of noodles and add more cabbage)
Olive Oil - 2 tbsp
Sweet Onion - 1 small, sliced
Garlic - 4 cloves, thinly sliced
Ginger - 1 inch, thinly chopped
Green Chili - 2, finely chopped
Vegetables - 2 cups (a mix of cabbage, red peppers, bean sprouts, carrots)

Shrimp - 8 oz, cooked
Eggs - 2, scrambled

For sauce:
Soy Sauce - 1 tbsp
Tamarind - 1 tsp, soak in 1 tbsp warm water for 15 minutes
Palm Sugar / Jaggery - 1 tbsp, grated
Rice Wine Vinegar - 1/2 tbsp.
Fish Sauce - 1 tsp

Coarsely ground roasted peanuts - 1/4 cup

Cook the noodles according to directions on the box. Rinse in cold water and keep aside.

While the noodles is cooking, squeeze the juice out of the tamarind and discard the tamarind pulp. Mix this juice along with the soy sauce, fish sauce, rice wine vinegar, grated palm sugar. Taste the sauce, it should taste sour first and then sweet.

Heat oil in a wok. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, green chili and saute for a minute. Then increase the heat and add chopped vegetables. Cook only for a couple of minutes on high flame. Do not overcook as the vegetables should remain crisp.

Add the scrambled eggs, cooked shrimp, boiled noodles and the tamarind sauce. Continue to cook on high heat for a few minutes, stirring and mixing the noodles continuously. Check for seasoning.

Remove from heat, toss the ground peanuts on top and serve immediately.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Vegetable Pulao / Vegetable Fried Rice

Cooked Rice - 2 cups
Ghee / Clarified Butter - 1 tbsp.
Onion - 1/3 cup, finely chopped
Green Chili - 2, chopped, optional
Mixed Vegetables - finely chopped - green peas, carrot, green beans, broccoli
Roasted Unsalted Cashewnuts - a handful
Pulao Masala - 1/2 tsp, optional
Melted Butter - 1 tbsp

Heat ghee / butter is a large pan. Add the chopped onions and cook on low fire till the onion begins to caramelize.  Then add all the vegetables and cashewnuts. Mix salt and cook for 5 to 10 minutes on high flame till the vegetables are done but still crisp. Sprinkle pulao masala, if using.

Mix rice, toss well and cook for a couple of minutes more. Adjust seasoning, add a tbsp of melted butter on top and serve hot.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Beetroot and Quinoa Burger

Quinoa - 1/4 cup
Water - 1/2 cup
Beetroot - 1, small
Carrots 1
Potato - 1, small
Black Salt
Oil - 1 tbsp
Onions -1 big, finely chopped
Ginger - 1 inch, grated
Red Chili Powder - 1/4 tsp
Roasted Cumin Powder - 1 tbsp
Whole Wheat Bread Crumbs - 1/2 cup
Cornstarch / Arrowroot - 1/4 cup
Roasted Peanuts (coarsely ground) - 2 tbsp
Oil for shallow frying
Wash the quinoa and cook with half cup water till done. Fluff with fork and keep aside.

Steam the beetroot, carrot, potato in a steamer and let them cool, Mash the vegetables coarsely and add salt to taste.

Heat oil in a big skillet and add the chopped onions. Fry the onions till golden brown. Add grated ginger and cook for a minute more.

Now add the mashed vegetables and cooked quinoa. Add cumin powder, red chili powder, mix well and cook for a few minutes. Turn off the flame and add roasted peanuts to the above.

Once it is cool, make small balls out of this mixture. Now mix the cornstarch with some water to make a batter. Dip each of the above-made balls in the batter. Afterwards coat each ball with the bread crumbs, press to make like patties and place onto a plate.

Repeat the process for all the balls and then place them in the refrigerator for 1 hour to firm up.

Heat the oil in a skillet and shallow fry each patty on both sides till golden brown. Serve with salad and ketchup.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Spicy Carrot Soup

Carrots - 3, chopped
Grape / Cherry Tomatoes - a handful
Water - 3 cups
White Onion - 1/3 cup, chopped
Ginger - 1 inch, sliced
Garlic Cloves - 3, chopped
Black Pepper - 1/4 tsp
Cayenne Pepper - 1/4 tsp (optional)
For serving:
Fresh Ground Black Pepper

Mix all the above ingredients together and cook in a pressure cooker on medium low heat. Once full pressure is reached, reduce and cook for a few minutes more.

Remove and cool. Using a high speed blender like vitamix, blend into a smooth paste.

Bring it to boil and check for seasoning. Add water, if required, to bring to desired consistency. Add butter and freshly ground black pepper and serve hot.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Stovetop Tomato Paste

Fresh Tomatoes - I used a mix of home grown grape and cherry tomatoes
Olive Oil

Most recipes of tomato paste call for removing the skin and the seeds. Since I am using home grown cherry tomatoes here, I decided to use my vitamix blender to blend the tomatoes with the skin and seeds to make a smooth mixture.

Cook this mixture over stove top for a couple of hours over medium low heat. Stir frequently towards the end. Once most of the liquid has evaporated and the paste looks dry and starts sticking to the bottom of the pan, add olive oil. Mix well and cool completely. Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator and use as required.

Warm Cabbage Salad

Cabbage - 1/2 (half of a medium size one or a small size cabbage)
Urad Dal / Split Black Lentil - 2 tbsp. (optional)
Green chilies - 2 to 3, chopped
Cilanto - a handful, chopped
Pink Salt
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Olive Oil - 1 tbsp

Wash the whole cabbage well. Chop the leaves finely.

Heat a cast iron skillet well. Add oil and immediately add the mustard seeds, green chilies, urad dal and turmeric powder.

Now add chopped cabbage, salt and mix well. Cover and cook for 10 minutes.

Take off the cover and cook over high heat for a couple of minutes more till the cabbage starts browning at the bottom. Remove from heat, garnish with chopped cilantro and serve.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Meat and Beans Meatballs for Dog

Ground Meat - 2 lbs
A mix of Dried Beans / Lentils / Brown Rice - 2 cups ( cook with sufficient water till done. I use mix of kidney beans and chickpeas, sometimes I use red lentils and yellow mung beans along with a little brown rice)
Eggs - 4
Potatoes - 3, lightly steamed and grated
Carrots - 4, lightly steamed and grated
Garlic - 1/2 tsp grated or use a dash of garlic powder
Cinnamon Powder - 1/2 tsp
Fresh Rosemary - a sprig (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F.

Blend the cooked beans and eggs together in a blender. If using lentils, no need to use a blender, just mash lightly with a fork.

Remove and mix in grated potatoes, carrots, garlic powder, cinnamon and rosemary.

Now add the ground meat and mix with your hands.

Make meatballs and place them in a muffin tin or on a lined baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes to 45 minutes till they are done.

Remove, cool and they can be stored in the refrigerator for upto 5 days.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Pan Fried Spicy Shrimp

Fresh Shrimp - 1 lb (shelled and de-veined but tail on)
Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
Cayenne Pepper - a pinch
Pink Salt - 2 pinches
Olive Oil - 2 to 3 tsp

Heat a cast iron pan. Once it is well heated, add the olive oil.

Immediately add the shrimp and mix with the oil. Sprinkle turmeric, salt and cayenne pepper and toss well. Cook on medium high heat for a couple of minutes on both sides till the shrimp becomes opaque. Do not overcook as this will turn the shrimp rubbery.

Remove from heat and serve hot.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Tomato Saar / Spicy Tomato Soup


Tomatoes - 2 lbs (use fresh homegrown tomatoes for best taste)
Carrots - 2, chopped
Water - 3 cups
White Onion - 1/3 cup, chopped
Ginger - 1 inch, sliced
Garlic Cloves - 3, chopped
Cumin Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Black Pepper - 1/4 tsp
Cayenne Pepper - 1/4 tsp or one Green Chili
Curry Leaves - 3

For tempering:
Ghee - 1 tbsp.
Cumin Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Mustard Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Hing / Asafoetida - a pinch
Curry Leaves - 4

Mix all the above ingredients together and cook in a pressure cooker on medium low heat. Once full pressure is reached, reduce and cook for a few minutes more.

Remove and cool. Using a high speed blender, blend into a smooth paste.

Heat ghee is a pan. Add the tempering and the blended tomato. Bring it to boil and check for seasoning. Add water, if required, to bring to desired consistency. Serve hot.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Brown Lentils with Black Cardamom

Brown Lentils / Kala Masoor Dal - 1 cup
Water - 2 1/2 cups
White Onion - 1/3 cup, finely chopped
Cumin Seeds / Jeera - 1/2 tsp
Green Chili - a couple, finely chopped
Bay Leaf - 2
Ginger - 1 inch, grated
Black Cardamom - 2 pods, using a mortar and pestle roughly crush the seeds
Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
Oil - 2 tsp
Ghee - 2 tsp

Cilantro, lemon juice and sliced red onion for serving

In a small pressure cooker, heat the oil and ghee together. Add cumin seeds, bay leaf, grated ginger, green chili and crushed cardamom seeds.

Then add the chopped onion and cook till soft.

Add the washed lentils and some salt and turmeric powder. Mix well. You can add a little sprinkle of cumin powder if desired, but not necessary. Then add the water, close cooker and cook over low heat for 2 full pressure whistles.

Alternatively, if the lentil is already cooked beforehand, just add it to the spices and the sautéed onion, add a cup of water and bring it to boil for a few minutes.

Sprinkle with chopped cilantro, add a dash of lemon juice and serve hot with sliced red onion.