February 16, 2014

Marbled Za'atar Bread

Za'atar a Middle Eastern spice made from the dried herbs, mixed with sesame seeds, dried sumac, and often salt, as well as other spices. Used in Arab cuisine, both the herb and spice mixture are popular throughout the Middle East.  Having tried this spice on flat bread in Mediterranean Bakery I wanted to try making bread with this. 

Marbled Zatar Bread

Bread flour - 3 cups
Skim milk - 1 cup
Sugar - 3 tsp
Salt - 1 tsp
Butter - 1 tsp
Olive oil - 3 tbsp
Yeast - 3 tsp

Za'atar spice - 3- 4 tbsp mixed in 3 tsp of olive oil

1.  Make sure the milk, butter, yeast are all at room temperature.
2.  Disintegrate the yeast in a tsp of sugar with luke warm water.
3.  Mix the bread flour in skim milk, disintegrated yeast, salt, butter and olive oil.  This can be done either by kneading by hand/ or in the kitchen aid mixer/food processor/bread machine dough cycle.
4. Cover the dough with oiled plastic wrap and set in a warm place for a few hours till it is double in size.
5.  Punch the dough and place of a lightly floured surface.
6.  Roll the dough about 3/4 inch thick and cover with oiled plastic wrap.
7.  Take the mixture of zaatar spice mixed in olive oil and spread it over the dough.  Leave a border of 1/2 inch.
8.  Roll up the dough and tuck the ends and place in a prepared bread pan.
9.  Cover with a plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place to rise for 45 minutes  or until the dough has risen more than double in size.
10. Preheat the oven to 425F.
11. Remove the plastic wrap and brush the top with olive oil and make light cuts on top with a knife.
12. Bake for 25 -30 minutes till the bread is golden.
13. Cool before slicing the bread.

February 9, 2014

Mini seasoned idlis

Idli is a very popular South Indian breakfast dish. This recipe is a twist to the regular idli and is tempered with spices.

Mini seasoned idlis
Mini idlis - 70 (or 16 regular idlis)
Salt to taste

Olive oil - 4 tbsp
Mustard seeds - 2 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Asafoetida - a pinch

Black dram dhal (urad) - 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves - 2 strands
Black pepper crushed coarsely - 1/2 tsp
Dry red chilly - 1
Cashew halved - a handful

Chutney powder - 4 tsp or as per taste
Lemon juice -  tbsp
Cilantro leaves chopped - 2 tbsp

1. Make 4 plates of mini idlis in the steamer or cut the regular idlis to cubes.
2. Take out of the mould and cool it completely.
3. Heat oil in a pan and add olive oil, asafoetida, mustard seeds, cumin seeds.  When the mustard seeds crackle add the urad dhal, curry leaves, crushed black pepper, red chilli and cashew nuts.  Saute.
4. Add the cooled idlis to the pan and toss gently.
5. Finally add the chutney powder and mix.  Adjust salt if necessary.
6. Add the lemon juice and garnish with chopped cilantro leaves.
Add asafoetida, curry leaves, mustard seeds to the oil. When the seeds splutter, - See more at: http://www.sanjeevkapoor.com/Mini-Tempered-Idlis.aspx#sthash.TERzrHW8.dpuf
Add asafoetida, curry leaves, mustard seeds to the oil. When the seeds splutter, - See more at: http://www.sanjeevkapoor.com/Mini-Tempered-Idlis.aspx#sthash.TERzrHW8.dpuf

February 3, 2014

Hirekai Dosa (Ridge gourd pancake)

Dosa is a common breakfast dish.  Though dosa typically refers to the version made with rice and lentils, many other versions exist, often specific to an Indian region.This dosa is typical to South Kanara region.

 Ridge gourd -1 (skin peeled and sliced)
1 cup – long grain rice (raw)
1/4 cup – fresh or frozen coconut grated
2 – dried red chillies
1 tsp – cumin seeds
Jaggery or brown sugar – 1 tbsp
Tamarind – 1 tsp
Salt to taste

1. Soak rice overnight
2. Blend rice with fresh or frozen grated coconut, red chillies, cumin seeds, jaggery or brown sugar, tamarind, and salt.
3. Heat the skillet.
4. Spread a tsp of oil on the skillet and arrange the sliced ridge gourd.
5. Pour the dosa batter on the skillet and spread evenly.
6. Keep the heat medium to high.
7. Put another tsp of oil to cook, cover the skillet.
8. Flip the dosa and cook on the other side.
9. Serve dosa with or without chutney.