Procrastination – How To Cook Rice and a Simple Dhal

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Happy New Year everyone! Its better late than never…procrastination seems to be my most favourite word for this year if not with everything at least with respect to blog. I’m not hoping nor promising that it will get better, lets leave it for the days to decide. Anyhow, coming to this post, which has been sitting as draft for nearly two months gets finally a way out. The one question people most commonly ask is “how do you cook rice”…I mean in the beginning I used wonder this is crazy simple why are they are asking me in the first place?

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Funda – Steamed Egg Korma

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“The eggs are the backbone of cooking, the cement that holds the castle of cuisine together.”

From the book mastering the art of southern cooking!

As you all know the main components of egg is albumen and yolk, which is mostly composed of protein.  Apart from proteins egg white contains water, small amounts of minerals and sugars whereas the yolk contains fat, vitamins A, D and minerals such as calcium, thiamine, and riboflavin. Depending on the feed of the bird the yolk colour ranges from yellow to deep orange (when the birds are fed with good feed).

The proteins are made up of long chains of amino acids.  In the raw eggs proteins are in their native state, i.e. they are in globular form, which means amino acids are twisted, folded and/or curled up in a very specific way giving the protein its shape and properties. Any induced alteration (mechanical or heat) to these proteins will in turn significantly alter the entire structure of the egg.

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Connections – Poached Fish with Garlic Paprika Sauce

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Surprisingly at sometimes few connections just happens. This was the case with professor from Santiago. By the end of the training, he arranged a group dinner in one of the local restaurant so I could taste fine Galician cuisine. Before reaching the restaurants we stopped by his house where I got to meet his lovely wife and two adorable boys. Briefly he made plans to take me around the city and market along with his family. I was overwhelmed by their kindness and affability. In between I got to know he loved cooking and he is a food blogger too, though it has been dormant for a while (Prof. if you are reading this, the world would love to learn more of your Galician recipes…so please post more!). Oh you know how it works between the food blogger’s the endless topics on love for food, photography, cooking and eating! I promised; next time if I go for training again I will carry a goodie bag of spices so I could cook some for them.

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Inheritance – Chicken Dum Biryani

There are many thing that we inherit from our parents and grandparents. Dum biryani is one such…it runs in our family. Starting from my late grandfather who was a pro in making them. Usually at home mutton dum biryani is made. Be it family get together, wedding and or Diwali it has always been biryani, grandpa has led the kitchen during those times. Let me tell you, almost a decade before these biryani were always made in bronze cooking pot on wooden fire. The whole process of making this is no less than a festival at home, with whole big bunch of family around. Usually the briyani is accompanied with chicken masala, raita and double ka meeta (bread halwa) is must! We kids we were aw struck with the whole making process, all mom’s in the kitchen taking care of pre-preparation step, men at backyard cutting the woods, setting the fire and getting the heating right.By the time we get to eat biryani is late after noon, we end by eating a sweet pan made by grandma. But elders always looking forward to eat biryani the next day. I have admit, now I realise that biryani taste best after its one day old…..With time cooking of biryani move to gas top, the taste did diminish a bit but the essence still remains….so this Diwali I’m here to give you chicken biryani from our family recipe. Here’s wishing you a very happy Diwali, may this Diwali brighten all your lives, do have a safe one …also try to say NO to crackers!

Quiescent – Baked Pumpkin Soup

Last whole month I was totally on move, up and down between Belgium, Spain, Switzerland and Paris. It was exciting and wonderful trips but…..not that I’m going to complain about travelling, I thought I should have schedule at least 3 week breaks between each trip. Well, after the storm, I curled up into my den for couple of weeks recovering (much needed I say!).
During the days of recovery only thing I was eyeing, on the way to work through fields, was pumpkins. Belgium autumn so far has been bit nice, moist, humid and foggy. Every day the density of fog amazes me, wish there were some lakes here it would have been picturesque…..anyhow last weekend I walked to Saturday market, my most favourite activity during weekend to hunt for some fresh treasure. I did come back with last few honey melon, in season corn, pumpkin, peanut and fresh fresh walnut (This is delicious!) and lots more. Nothing makes my happier when my see my refrigerator filled with happy looking fruits and vegetable saying “eat me”. Very obediently pumpkin was transformed in to this delicious pumpkin soup. It did get some good grade from fellow colleagues. I’m totally in love with pumpkin soups, if you have any other version do drop a note would love to try!
Happy spooky autumn!