Tag Archives: Food Porn

Oh dear carrots – you’ve warmed my heart on a cold winter day!

glThey sat there in the fridge looking expectantly at me on a cold winter day.  The little bag of baby carrots, waiting to be let out and begging me to unleash some creativity.

Hunger and not necessity is sometimes the mother of invention.  So, I took the carrots and blanched the entire contents of the little bag.  And then very simply tossed these warm carrots with tahini, olive oil, berbere, green chillies, fresh coriander, mint and lemon juice to create a salad that was the perfect, healthy lunch.  It really is as simple as mixing these ingredients, but if you need a more precise how-to, here it is.

Ingredients:

One small bag of baby carrots (One pound bag)

Two tbsps tahini

One tbsp olive oil

Two tbsps chopped coriander leaves

Two tbsps chopped mint leaves

Two tsps berbere (or paprika or one tsp chilly powder)

One hot green chilly finely chopped

Juice of half a lemon

How to:

Mix all the ingredients and serve hot or cold as a salad or side dish.  If you have a few pomegranate seeds, you can use these for a colorful garnish.

 

 

 

When a favorite Indian dessert gets converted into an exotic cake

We all have rituals that make us smile.  For my husband, it is the act of eating a single piece of the Indian sweet Rasmalai which never fails to put a smile on his face.  So when Melissa Clark from the New York Times converted this sweet into a cake for a good friend, I absolutely had to recreate it in my kitchen.

Just a quick primer on Rasmalai.  It literally translates into “Ras” meaning juice and “malai” meaning cream.  It’s a dessert made with homemade cheese and served in a milk-based syrup flavored with rosewater, cardamom and sometimes saffron.

What Melissa did is absolutely brilliant and I continue to learn and be inspired by the art and science of this creation.  Mirroring the inspiration is accomplished through the beautiful art of layering flavors.  The cakes are subtly flavored with cardamom and rose water, then get a soak of milk that is infused with cardamom, followed by a sandwiching process with rose water flavored ricotta filling and a final, stylish flourish of creamy, mascarpone frosting that has a subtle flavor of rose water.

And here’s the final end product staged with a topping of dried rose petals and pistachios.  A sight to behold and a beautiful treat to devour.

As you might have guessed by now, you’ve got to tell yourself the calories are not real and simply a figment of your imagination:)

If you’d like to recreate this, here’s the link to the recipe I followed.

PS.  I do want to thank all the readers/experimenters of the original recipe who generously shared their learnings.  This was instrumental in turning my creation out beautifully!

A few last dates between zucchinis and tomatoes before they are gone!

It’s October; that means if we are lucky, we have several more weeks of the best veggies that we can pick up at our local farm.  Yesterday, I picked up the juiciest cherry tomatoes and zucchinis that looked absolutely beautiful in the most exuberant shade of green.  So for lunch today, I created a salad for one with these two ingredients being the mainstay.  Not only was it delish, you’ve got to agree that it is just a beautiful sight to behold as well!

Ingredients:

One small zucchini converted into ribbons with a vegetable peeler

8-10 cherry tomatoes halved

8-10 pistachios (or any nut for crunch)

One tsp extra virgin olive oil

One tsp lemon juice

Half a tsp of berbere, paprika or chili powder

Salt to taste

 

How to:

Put the zucchini ribbons at the center of a plate.

Arrange the sliced tomatoes, cut side up, in a circle around the zucchini.

Sprinkle salt to taste and berbere (or paprika or chili powder) on the zucchini ribbons and tomatoes.

Pour the olive oil and lemon juice over the salad.

Garnish with pistachios (or other nuts) and dig in!