EGGS BENEDICT…WITH LOVE FROM MEXICO by Radhika @ My Tryst with Baking (a guest post)

If there’s one thing I could eat everyday, that should be EGGS. I remember one day, I have eaten four eggs – 2 sunny side up eggs and 2 scrambled eggs. I think that was the time I ran out of recipes to try… or maybe lazy to cook something. So when that day comes, eggs are the answer to an instant meal. And ohhh… soft boiled eggs on a salad? I would kill for it. :D

So when Radhika asked me to choose among those recipes she’s love to bring to my blog as a guest blogger, I chose eggs. EGGS FOR THE WIN!! Wohooo!! :D

Apart from Radhika shares amazing recipes, I also love her plating skills. <3

Thank you for some of you who thinks I am a creative cook, but there are some things (relating to food presentation) that I am not creative at. One of them is plating. That’s why I was so amazed by her talent – such creative gal.

It’s better to stop my envious talk and let me tag along Radhika here at Fiesta Friday. ;)


Eggs Benedict…With Love From Mexico

Jhuls from thenotsocreativecook, her blog name I feel is a total misnomer friends! It’s pretty evident that the lovely Jhuls does not need any introduction as you would definitely be a fan of her blog as I am. Her posts will surely put a smile on your face and her recipes are so much fun. I love the variety of recipes on her blog and the fact that she loves nutella as much as any of us might.. :D

When Jhuls was looking for volunteers for guest post, I promptly raised my hand. Did I deliver with such punctuality, ummm. That’s debatable I’d say.. ;) Without further ado, I would like to share with you a dish that has been inspired by Eggs Benedict! It has all the elements of an eggs benedict, the muffins, the poached eggs, the meat, the sauce. It is simply with a twist. :)

I love Mexican food, but I wouldn’t go as far as to say I cook a lot of Mexican food at home. I simply don’t but I use a lot of ingredients as they are super tasty and healthy as well. This recipe has been inspired from Cole and it’s quite tasty and refreshing. eggs1

Eggs Benedict…With Love From Mexico


Ingredients :

  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lime, juiced and zest
  • 1 1/2 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped
  • 1 spring onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp White Vinegar
  • 4 large Coles Brand Free Range Eggs
  • 4 chorizo/ chicken bacon, sliced
  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and mashed roughly
  • 4 English Muffins, split and toasted, Readymade or homemade
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • Mint leaves, for garnishing
  • Spring onion leaves, for garnishing eggs2

Instructions :

English Muffins :

I have used Bonnie’s recipe for english muffins and they turned out to be super delicious! My hubby loved them, I had to ensure there were some left for this recipe.. ;)

Please click here for the recipe. I just made normal size instead of the mini ones. :)

Coriander-Lime sauce:
In a medium bowl, combine the lime zest, lime juice, chopped coriander, spring onion.
In a saucepan, heat oil over medium-low heat. Add the lime-herb mixture to the warm oil keeping 1 tbsp aside and remove the pan from the heat.

Poaching the Eggs:
In a large deep saucepan, combine the vinegar and 2 litres of water and bring to a boil over high heat.
Reduce the heat to medium so that the water is just simmering. Crack one egg into a coffee cup and then gently transfer the egg to the simmering water. Repeat with remaining eggs. Allow the eggs to poach about 3 minutes.
Gently remove the eggs from the simmering water and place them in the warm olive oil-lime sauce (off the heat) until ready to serve.

Meanwhile, heat a medium heavy frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook until the edges of the bacon begin to crisp, about 1-2 minutes per side. Drain the cooked bacon on paper towels.
Gently fold the avocado chunks into the reserved 1 tablespoon of lime-herb mixture to coat. Season with salt and pepper.

To serve :
Top each toasted English muffin half with a piece of bacon. Place the avocado on top, and carefully place the poched egg on top of the avocado. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle some of the sauce and garnish with mint and spring onion leaves. Serve immediately.

Bon Apetit!

Bon Apetit!

Wow! I haven’t encountered Eggs Benedict with a touch of Mexico. Amazing recipe, Radhika. I love this so much – thank you so much. <3 I am so glad to have you today and I am sure the FF crowd will love this. :D

For more of Radhika, kindly visit her amazing blog at My Tryst with Baking. And ohhh, check these lovely, lovely macarons. :D

Again,

Happy FF#39!

fiesta-friday-badge-button-i-party

Thank you to the ever kind, Angie, and to our co-hosts.

name2

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.

thenotsocreativecook at 33 Part 2 (Fiesta Friday #39 & a birthday post… again)

So the birthday post continues…

(Please check the previous post so you could relate with the rest of the story.) :D

In the Philippines, we have Burger Steak meal from Jollibee and it is served with rice, mashed potato with toasted garlic and sunny side up eggs. When I posted this on my Instagram account, I, again, drooled over them. (Shhhhh – My followers should be the ones drooling over them!!) I decided to give myself some little stuff (again!) and bought these potato masher, gravy boat and egg ring just for this birthday dinner of mine.

image(It’s my birthday, anyway!) The amazing thing is, the egg ring could also be used to get a perfect shape for pancakes… and I’ll have to try that after some time. (Can’t it be on my birthday as well?)

Burger Steak for my birthday? Check.

thenotsocreativecook-BurgerSteakBD3For the cake, I was saying that something has changed my mind – from Mocha Cake to the purple one.

thenotsocreativecook-UbeCake3My brother was kind enough to bring me two bottles of Ube Jam, so I thought of making something else out of it aside from eating it or using it on bread. That’s why Mocha Cake was set aside. I so love my version of Mocha Cake, but I also love Ube Cake… and for a change. ;)

(What is Ube? Dioscorea alata, known as purple yam and many other names, is a species of yam, a tuberous root vegetable, that is bright lavender in color. – Wiki)

Not bad for a change, eh? But I got my migraine worst after I took a bite – well, because heavy cream + cream cheese is a pain in the head. :D

So let’s go on…

Along with the little stuffs I got for the reason that it’s my birthday (it’s a valid reason, right?), I also received this beautiful cake from two of my friends – thenotsocreativecook-BDcake2Pretty, huh? And they think that I am a chef? That’s so flattering. :D

…the books I got for myself –

thenotsocreativecook-books

- the top left book, btw, is a gift from one of my favorite people in the world – she is such a supporter of mine. :D

And this last one is a gift from the fairy godmother to the princess and a very sweet wish – thenotsocreativecook-princess

That’s a necklace chain, btw. :D <3

…and the very last one – you remember the card from Jodi? Well, she was so kind and very sweet to send it to me last month. <3 (Thanks again, Jodi!)

thenotsocreativecook-BD5thenotsocreativecook-BD6So despite the migraine, I did have a happy birthday – not because of the gifts I received, but because of the people who are there to make me smile and feel loved. thenotsocreativecook-UbeCake

Today, I share you the happiness and the love.

And as promised, here is the recipe of the Ube Cake that makes me feel The Chef Princess. ;)

UBE CAKE

(Note: I am giving you the source recipe. I did not use some of the ingredients and changed some, noting it for you.)

Ingredients:

For the Cake:

  • 2¼ cups cake flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 7 eggs, yolk and white separated
  • ½ cup olive oil (I used vegetable oil)
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 cup grated ube (I used Ube Jam)
  • ½ tsp cream of tartar

For Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 2 cups whipping cream
  • 1 *8oz. package of cream cheese
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 *12 oz jar of macapuno (preserved sweet coconut strings) (I did not use macapuno)

Instructions:

For the Cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line two 9″ round, 1½” high pans and one 4″x8″ loaf pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, sift cake flour, baking powder, ¾ cup sugar and salt and mix until well combined. On a separate bowl, combine egg yolks, oil, milk, and ube. Add egg mixture to flour mixture. Beat on lowest setting until just combined. Set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk egg whites on high speed until frothy. Gradually add in remaining ¾ cup sugar and cream of tartar and beat until stiff peaks are formed. Gently fold in egg whites into mixture until very well combined.
  4. Divide batter into prepared pans. Bake for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool down in pans for about 5 minutes then transfer to wire racks and allow to completely cool down.

For the Frosting:

  1. In a small bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth and creamy. In another bowl, beat heavy cream, sugar and vanilla on high speed until stiff. Slowly fold in cream cheese and beat again at high speed for a few seconds just until well combined. Be sure not over beat your frosting.

To assemble:

  1. Drain some of the syrup from the macapuno. Set aside.
  2. Place one of the round cakes on your serving plate or cake board. Spread and level about 1/3 of frosting onto the cake layer until it is about ¼” thick. Top with 1/3 of the macapuno. Place second round cake on top of macapuno. Spread the next 1/3 of frosting to cover top and sides of cake.
  3. Remove sides and bottom of the loaf cake. Cut the cake into cubes then crumble using a food processor or blender. Gently stick the crumbs to the cake top and sides until it is fully covered.
  4. Using the remaining frosting, pipe out big rosettes around the cake’s top edge, and some small ones around the bottom part. Spread the remaining macapuno in the center of the cake. You may also top the rosettes with macapuno.

Source recipe author’s note: (If using fresh ube, cook it first in boiling water. Peel it after allowing to cool down, then grate. If using frozen ube, use it as is.)

Recipe from Pinay in Texas Cooking Corner.

I hope you enjoy my birthday treat. Enjoy the party.

Thank you to the ever kind, Angie, and to our co-hosts.

Happy FF#39!

(New to Fiesta? Click the image below for the guidelines.)

fiesta-friday-badge-button-i-party

name2

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.

PS: Dear Sue, I know you asked for the burger steak recipe. I will be posting an updated one soon. ;) Thanks for asking. <3

thenotsocreativecook at 33 (A Birthday Post)

I usually get excited before my birthday comes; I count days. And not only days, sometimes I say ‘It’s three months before my birthday.’ (Is it crazy?) What makes me so excited? Maybe the gift I’ll get for myself? Or maybe the foods I’ll cook and bake? Maybe both; I can’t tell. Or maybe… it’s the feeling that you get to pamper yourself with anything you can manage. :D

This year, my excitement went down. I even forgot that my birthday is near until a friend sent me a message saying ’11 days more to go.’ And it got me thinking and counting… and I was like ‘Oh yeah… my birthday is near.’

My birthday was last weekend (October 18). And you know, I could never let it pass without having a present myself – I got myself books. :D

I was already planning for a dinner – my sister posted a burger steak on her Facebook page and drooled over it. Of course, the recipe came from me. ;)

Sharing with you, I had these on my birthday:

A delicious burger steak (the patties had a little problem and we did not get along when I wanted some for the photoshoot)

thenotsocreativecook-BurgerSteakBD

…with my homemade creamy mashed potatoes

thenotsocreativecook-BurgerSteakBD1

…along with these purple stuffs :D

thenotsocreativecook-UbeCake4

 (and sorry for the blurry photo – the birthday girl slash the migraine girl was exhausted)

Since I started baking, traditionally, my birthday is not complete without Mocha Cake. I was planning to bake one, but one thing has made me changed my mind.

thenotsocreativecook-BD2

The rest of the story will be told on Friday at (where else?) – Fiesta Friday. ;)

Meanwhile, enjoy these… <3

thenotsocreativecook-BD3(I apologize again for the blurry photo)

 

name2

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.

Tricky Tuesdays: Kitchen Hacks To Help You Cut Down On Food Waste

thenotsocreativecook is a little busy nowadays – with life, work and everything in between. But you know that I’d steal some time from my busy life to bring you another amazing tricky stuffs…

Today, it’s  not gonna be that much – I just found some awesome tricks on how to help cut down on food waste. And here are some of my picks:

Hide garlic and onions in holey paper bags: They’ll stay fresh for at least two months without molding.

148b7a28930162670f9e8643ea409a3b_650x


Microwave citrus for 10-20 seconds before squeezing: A warm fruit releases more juice than cold.

7dbe417a0b696434e2493afd1a984f03_650x


Wrap celery in foil: It’ll keep for up to a month this way. Works for broccoli too.

54c222cfc55e7c239118c09a1a8eb990_650x


Wrap banana crowns in plastic wrap: They’ll keep for 3-5 days longer than usual.

8d5cce0ecff052ff00e3d24898fc1b9b_650x


…and this one is my most loved among them all -

Add warm milk to the dregs of a Nutella jar and shake: Instant hot chocolate! :D

2629ca7486ef1ab7453b64b2e0fe3946_650x

I hope you find these interesting. Have a fabulous mid-week.

Check the rest of them here: 21 Brilliant Kitchen Hacks To Help You Cut Down On Food Waste and tell me your favorite(s). ;)

 

name2

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.

Introducing ‘new’ bloggers #16

Woohoooo! I am back with another five wonderful blogs. :D I hope you take some time to visit them. <3

sayhello

Antics in Cooking – “Learning how to cook one step at a time, sharing terrible photos and awesome recipes, and having fun doing it!” Dear Dave, your photos are great and for me, they are perfect because they make me drool. :D I love creamy dishes, so this Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Skillet sounds awesome to me. And this little kitchen helper is really worth the mention. :D  And oh, one more thing before I proceed with the second blogger – check this delicious Beef Enchiladas. <3

The Grilling Fanatic  – Do all guys love grilling? Well, meet another new found blogger named David and grilling makes him happy – “This is my little corner of the world where I like to post pictures of grill sessions that made me happy. There is no drama here.  No arguments about “real barbecue”.  I don’t care if you use lighter fluid.” Hmm, I think David could help people like me [who is not fond of grilling] how to love grilling and what are the basics. And I don’t mind waiting in the corner with some Fiesta Friday buddies while waiting David to finish grilling up these Classic Summer Grilled Drumsticks. And I should add these Grilled Pimiento Cheese Sandwiches  <3

This Baking Beauty -  “Although I love sweet treats, I’m also very passionate about fitness. My goal for this blog is to inspire people to do what they love and to look and feel good doing it.” I have been following Emily on her Instagram account, but it slipped my mind that she’s also blogging. (Meaning – I need to hop on to her blog.) And now, I am punishing myself drooling over these Coffee Cake Cookies and Banana Bread Coffee Cake. Well, you can tell that I am a coffee lover. :D Please check the rest of her mouth-watering recipes on her blog.

Melady Cooks – “My Mom really is an excellent cook.  I collected her recipes and recipes I cut out of magazines onto little index cards and shoved them into boxes for years.  Sometimes I even made the recipes.” Audrey taught herself how to cook when she went to college at 18. She is a princess at her own castle. And oh, she owns a tiara. :D (Ehem, I do, too, Audrey!) Anyway, she’s living with her P.S. (Find our what’s P.S from her About page). And I didn’t know that you could enjoy green beans just like these Fried Green Bean Appetizers

The Travelling Pantry –  “Since I have been interested in food photography and styling, my seemingly pointless (but intriguing) collection now serves a great purpose in cohesion with my cooking and food styling, the animals, maybe less so. The collection will travel with me, wherever I go – there it will be – ‘The Travelling Pantry’”.Wow! Just WOW! Seriously, I am running out of words to say. This blog is one of the best blogs I have ever encountered – photos, recipes… everything!! For the meantime, enjoy these Maple Pecan Pie by Katie.

I hope you have a safe and drooli-cious week. ;)

name2

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.

TAWA BHENDI FRY by Su @ Su’s Healthy Living (a guest post)

For today’s FF, I am again pleased to tell you that I am bringing along Su @ Su’s Healthy Living. Su is an amazing blogger whom I met during FF. We immediately got along with each other, though I was shy (What? Me, shy?) to confront her most of the time as when I look at her, I always see a ‘bubble hat’ over hear head saying “HEALTHY! HEALTHY! HEALTHY” and I thought, ‘Uh-oh!’ :D

Anyway, I was really surprised when she emailed me that she wanted to be my guest on my blog. I was like – ‘Really? On my naughty blog?’ I mean – Oh yes! I would really love that. And here she is – bringing this Tawa Bhendi Fry.


Tawa Bhendi Fry ( Pan-fried Okra)

phonto 570

 I was thrilled when Jhuls from thenotsocreativecook accepted my guest post. I then started pondering about what kind of recipe I would write for her? I wanted it to be something different, yet easy; something that would appeal to a wide range of population and ethnicity. I finally decided on Tawa Bhendi Fry which literally translates to Pan Okra Fry. The recipe is simple but has a burst of flavors with different spices, yet versatile enough to be modified a little as per individual taste.

TAWA BHENDI FRY (PAN-FRIED OKRA

Ingredients:

  • Okra: 24 small to medium-sized ones.
  • Cooking oil: 1- 2 tbsp( I use coconut oil, any cooking oil can be used).
  • Mustard seeds: 1/2 tsp
  • Curry leaves: 1 sprig( optional)
  • Turmeric powder: 1/4 tsp
  • Cumin powder: 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander powder: 1/2 tsp
  • Amchur powder( dry mango powder): 1/4 tsp
  • Chilli powder( paprika): 1/4 tsp ( optional), skip if you don’t want it too spicy.
  • Black pepper powder: 1/4 tsp( freshly ground)
  • Salt: as per taste

Method:

Wash the okra thoroughly and let it air dry on paper towels. Ensure that the okra is completely dry before you start cutting/ cooking it. Never wash okra after cutting. You will end up with a slimy mess!

Now slightly cut the crown ( stem)end and the tail end of the okra. Ensure that you cut just enough so as to not to slit open the okra. Make 3 vertical slits along the length of the okra.

phonto 579

Place the okra in a microwave-safe bowl and cook it for just 1 minute. This significantly reduces the cooking time on the stove-top. This is a tip I learnt from my dear blogger friend, Sonal Gupta.

In a frying pan, heat oil on medium heat. Add mustard seeds. Once the mustard seeds splutter, add in the curry leaves and okra.

phonto 580

Sauté until the okra is slightly browned and tender(around 5-6 minutes). Now add in the turmeric powder, cumin powder, jeera powder, amchur powder and sauté for 30 seconds.

phonto 574

Add in the black pepper powder, chilli powder and salt and sauté for 20-30 seconds.

Reduce the flame to low, cover and cook for a minute or two so that all the spices blend into the okra.

phonto 575

Serve hot with steamed rice or enjoy just like that as an appetizer!

phonto 578

 Enjoy!


Wow! That an amazing recipe to enjoy Okra, Su! Thank you so much. I am sure FF crowd would love these babies as their appetizer before they dig in and enjoy their main dish and desserts. ;) Right, FF people?

For more of Su and if you haven’t bumped into her yet, please take some time to visit her blog – Su’s Healthy Living and enjoy this Mangalorean Fish Curry and others. <3

 ****

Thank you to the ever kind, Angie, and to our co-hosts.

Happy FF#38!

(New to Fiesta? Click the image below for the guidelines.)

fiesta-friday-badge-button-i-party

Enjoy the weekend and enjoy the party!!

name2

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.

Tricky Tuesdays: How to Tenderize Beef [or meat]

There are times that I get a very good soft and tender beef. And there are times that I am not.

One day, I cooked a beef dish that includes marinade. I thought that should be working very well as I used clear soda and Calamansi (Philippine’s native lemon). I was used to cooking not-so-thin slices of beef in between 30-45 minutes, so I thought I cooked it perfectly. I was wrong. My sister and my brother told me “Hey, this beef is not tender enough – it’s tough.” And in order not to feel upset, I just said “Really? Ha! So you will do the jaw exercise.” I never told them, but I was very upset. I started cooking long years back and never thought or searched how to tenderize beef… and here I am, sharing with you what I found out:

There are many things that could be used to tenderize beef – commercial powders, sodas or something with acid content, coffee & tea, buttermilk and yogurt, and even natural tenderizers.

Okay, let’s do them one by one:

Commercial Powders: they can be bought in small (or maybe even big) bottles which are labeled ‘meat tenderizer’. They contain enzymes that help break down the tougher fibers of the beef. They are often produced from pineapple and papaya extracts. This can be used in marinade or just by rubbing the beef and let the powder stay for few hours.

Sodas or Something with Acid Content: Soda is one of the basic things I use when I marinate beef – Sprite or 7-Up to be specific. Along with soda, I also use citrus like Calamansi or Lemon. Aside from they help in softening the muscle fiber, they also add delicious flavor as well.

Coffee or Tea: Okay, this is the second that I have encountered this. There was one recipe I found that uses coffee as a rub or a marinade (I could hardly remember). Coffee is a natural tenderizer as well as Tea. Tea contains Tannins which are considered as natural tenderizes, too. You can do this by boiling a cup or two of either of them and marinate for as long as 24 hours inside the fridge and you are ready to fire up the grill.

Buttermilk & Yogurt: Not only these two contain some acidity, but the calcium content makes the enzymes activated which helps break down proteins.

Fruits: Figs, Papayas, Pineapples and Kiwis – they are considered to have papain, an enzyme used in making commercial tenderizers. Like acids and salt, the enzyme breaks down tough muscle fibers. You may cut the fruits or mash them and put the beef between them and let sit in the fridge for several hours. And then again, you are ready to grill them. Also, Ginger is a good tenderizer as well.

Baking soda: This also contains acid. Sprinkle baking soda all over, rub and the let sit in the fridge for several hours. Rinse the beef well before cooking.

Pounding: It is said that tougher cuts of beef can be tenderized by pounding them as it breaks muscle tissues. This is good when grilling or cutting beef for stir-fry dishes. (Hmm, I think I should get myself that meat mallet. Haha!)

 

IMPORTANT NOTE: Marinating beef with acid content should not take more than two hours as it will give you a tougher beef. Just in case you’d want to marinate your beef more than that, add a small amount of oil to keep the beef moist and to prevent it from being tough. Also, glass dishes are preferable to use when using strong acid base marinade.

Of course, it not only depends on the marinades or rubs, but also, you need not to undercook or overcook your beef. ;)

Do you have any more tips regarding tenderizing beef? Please leave your comments below. :)

name2

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.

Introducing ‘new’ bloggers #15

First, I apologize for not doing the ‘Introducing New Bloggers’ series for two months. I will explain in one of my future posts. :D

Second, I am back once again… So, together, let us…

sayhello

Happiness at Home – Sarah believes that to have a successful blog, one should have one theme… but also, Sarah knows that, in her blog, that’s not gonna happen as she shares amazing recipes, decorating, DIYs and more. She is a stay-at-home Mom with her little buddy and hubby. I was amazed by her DIYs and decorating talents… Just look at this Courtyard Patio Make-Over – amazing, isn’t it? Also, another dish with Polenta caught my hungry tummy – Chicken Cacciatore with Creamy Parmesan Polenta – Oh yum!!

T as Tasty – I think some of you knew Tamara long before me. I didn’t know why I have not discovered her blog from the time she started. Her blog is running since March 2014 and I can’t believe that I have not found her. Tamara has so many amazing and tempting recipes – care for dessert? Why not check this Brownies with Mascarpone Cheese? This is just brilliant!! (Tamara, I just bookmarked it and definitely try this one.) And how about something for your dinner? Take this Red Beef Curry out of your screen :P Glad that you contacted me, Tamara, so I could find you. ;)

Nita Eats  – “Savoring life bite by bite.” Like me, Nita sounds to be a sheltered child. :D I have never tried exploring food that much unless my Mom tells me so. Nita is currently living in France. On her blog, she shares her kitchen and culinary adventures. She has started her blog back in 2010 and has shared so many amazing recipes. These Chouquettes are just one of them. Check the rest of her recipes on her blog and you’ll find more. ;)

Ben’s Kitchen – Just before I went MIA, I have been following Ben on Instagram and I really admire his passion for baking and cooking. It was hard for me to believe that a 16-year old teenage boy could have so much passion in cooking and baking. (Well, don’t blame me. I really didn’t know.) Anyway, Ben’s not only excellent in cooking and baking, but also, his photos are amazing, too. :D To share you some of his love for cooking, check this Warm Chocolate Cake and Spiced Orange Pie.

HealthiTeens – “I know how hard it is to manage a healthy lifestyle whilst working hard at school/work everyday and the expenses of fresh, healthy foods. SO, I wanted to make a blog to share some easy and unbelievably good food that will make you feel great and should not take too long. (However, once in a while I may throw in a few treats.)” Haha! I love the last line, Maya. As I always say: “Healthy does not have to be boring.” Maya has many awesome treats for everyone that’s healthy and still tastes delicious. One of my favorites – 100% Gluten Free Carrot Cake.Continue the good job, Maya! :)

I hope you have a safe and drooli-cious week. ;)

name2

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.

Pumpkin Polenta by Chef Mimi @ Chef Mimi Blog (a guest post)

Hello, Ladies and Gents… Bubbly and funny Friends… I missed you! <3

Thankfully, I am back! I think I was gone for too long that I need to spend another one whole month to catch up. How are things going at the blogging world and here at FF? Ohhh! How I missed the FF crowd – the people, the gossip (ooppss) and the FOOOOOD!!! Made new friends? And speaking of friends… I brought you one. She’s Chef Mimi. I was hooked when I knew that Chef Mimi shares a lot of pasta dishes. Gosh! I love pasta. I mean, who doesn’t? Other than that, she shares so many wonderful dishes from around the world.

Anyway, it’s so sad to say that I am not staying for long… so I bring you Chef Mimi.


Over the years I’ve been asked quite frequently about the difference between polenta and grits.  But they are the same thing – essentially, cornmeal.  Polenta is the Italian name for the dish, and grits are well known in the states as a Southern staple.  They are both a savory porridge of sorts, made with ground corn.  The only thing that is different is the grind of the cornmeal.  There are finer grinds and coarser ones. 

The reason I love polenta (and grits) is that I can do wonderful things with it depending on my mood and the season. For example, with fall approaching, I’ve begun stocking up on one of my favorite canned ingredient – pumpkin puree. I add pumpkin to soups, stews, pastas, meat loaves, risottos, and today, polenta. Pumpkin not only complements the cornmeal flavor, but it creates a beautiful orange color as well. It just screams autumn!

pol1

When you go to cook your cornmeal as polenta, you need to read the package directions. Because polenta comes in various grinds, the cooking times vary. Just as with purchased pasta, read the directions. Also keep in mind that cornmeal nearly triples in volume when it cooks, so unless you’re cooking for an army, don’t be tempted to use more than 1 cup of polenta, which is perfect for 4-5 servings.  Here’s what I did.

PUMPKIN POLENTA

  • Servings: 4-5
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups chicken broth
1/2 can pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup medium-grind cornmeal

Instructions:

In a large pot, heat the butter and oil over medium-heat until the butter just browns. Add the onion and stir, lower the heat to medium low. Sauté the onion for about 3-4 minutes.

pump

Add the garlic and cook for just about 30 seconds, then stir in the broth, pumpkin, and salt.

pump1

 

pump3

Turn up the heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Using a whisk, slowly pour in the cornmeal. Lower the heat and simmer the polenta, whisking occasionally, until all of the liquid is incorporated.

pump2

If it gets too thick, add a little more liquid. This process should only take about 8-10 minutes unless you’re using a coarser cornmeal.

pump4

Serve with grated cheese, if desired, such as Parmesan, or, in my case, Monterey Jack!

pol4

If you want your polenta a little more decadent, substitute some heavy cream or even goat’s milk for some of the broth.

Just think of the ways you can make polenta! Add pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, mushrooms, both fresh and dried, ancho chile paste, achiote oil – you name it!

Note: Just like oatmeal, polenta will keep thickening with time. If you need to refrigerate any leftover polenta, make it really soupy before you store it. Only then will you have a chance of not discovering a cornmeal frisbee in your frig the next day!


Thank you for that wonderful treat, Chef Mimi.

Blogging buddies, let’s all welcome Chef Mimi… and dig in. :P For more of Chef Mimi, please hop on to Chef Mimi Blog.

pol

Thank you to the ever kind, Angie, and to our co-hosts.

Happy FF#37!

(New to Fiesta? Click the image below for the guidelines.)

fiesta-friday-badge-button-i-party

Enjoy the weekend and enjoy the party!!

name2

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.

 

PS: Guest bloggers kept on emailing me even after the deadline, and Chef Mimi is one of them. I still have few treats from the remaining guest bloggers… so watch out, foodies. :D

CHICKEN THORAN by Nimmi @ Adorable Life (a guest post)

When I was making a draft for the announcement of the guest post, I’d like to mention that one of the requirements was a dish from your home country. But I don’t know why I changed my mind – maybe in order not to limit your choices.

 When Nimmi told me that she wanted to bring a dish from Kerala, I gladly said that would be great.

 Nimmi blogs from Adorable Life. She’s such a sweetheart and she always welcomes you with a smile and warm messages. We met each other during FF. (So thankful of Angie for the FF.) Aside from being passionate about food, she’s also crafty and loves to travel. (Could you take me with you some other time, Nimmi?) :D

Okay, I will stop talking now as Nimmi will start feeding you with her delicious treats –


“Chicken Thoran”/ stir fried chicken with coconut & Potato:

This is my first guest post!! And i am so glad to post my first one in my dear Jhuls’ yummy blog-THE NOT SO CREATIVE COOK..!! :) I am pretty sure that Jhuls would be a dear friend of every single person she have ever met..she’s that sweet and awesome person with a very good humour factor in herself..

 All of us love reading her posts, comments and yummy recipes along with drooling pictures..

❤❤ you Jhuls❤!!

Now lets get to the recipe…

image (5)

Chicken Thoran is a typical Kerala cuisine which is really easy to prepare.. At the same time really yummy too.. The combination of chicken & potato is enriched with the coconut mixture..

Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients:

Chicken-500 gm( mostly boneless )

Potato-3( chopped )

Coconut-1/2 cup

Green chilly-3

Mustard seeds-1/2 teaspoon

Cumin seeds-1/2 teaspoon

Onion-1 ( chopped )

Red chilly-2( cut to half )

Coconut oil-2 spoon

Turmeric powder-1/2 teaspoon each for cooking chicken & for thoran

Red chilly powder-1/2 teaspoon each

Coriander powder-1 teaspoon

Pepper powder-1/2 teaspoon

How to make:

1)first of let’s boil chicken in a bowl of water along with red chilly powder,coriander powder,turmeric powder and salt..

image

2)when the chicken is done, take it out from boiled water and add the potatoes to the same boiling water..and cook it till soft..

3)now separate cooked potatoes from this water and save the left water for further use..

image (1)

4)now gently grind the chicken flesh without bones to a minced form( don’t over do it!! I used stone spice grinder to prevent this problem)

5)then coarsely grind coconut,cumin seeds and green chillies to thick mixture.

image (2)

6)now heat a wok, add oil and splutter mustard seeds & red chillies..later add onion and saute well..

7)to this add the grinded coconut mixture and saute well for another couple of mins..

8)now add masala powders and mix well..

9)now add the minced chicken and give a nice stir..cook it for some time..

10)now pour some chicken stock and cook well.. Add the potatoes to this and mix well..

image (3)

11)the water content should be evaporated completely..!! Cook till you get a nice thick consistency..add more masala powders if needed..

12)add li’l more oil also if needed for mote taste and off the flame!!

Chicken thoran/ Stir Fried Chicken with Coconut & Potato is done!! :D

image (6)

It would go well with rice/ chapathi or any kind of bread..

I hope you all would love this yummy Kerala Dish..

Njoy folks!! ;)


That was mouth-watering, Nimmi. I am sure our friends from the blogging world want to get this off the screen and put this on their tables. :D Thank you so much, Nimmi. <3

I don’t know how come I’ve missed this Mac-Bread Salad With Feta & Garlic, Italian Salad Dressing :| That looks so yummy!

Check the rest of her Kerala dishes and other on her blog. ;) Enjoy this, friends!

(This is my last guest post for September. I’d be back for more guest post for October.)

 

name2

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.