Tag Archives: Yummy

Flaky, buttery, date bread inspired by the Omani Maldouf

Not too long ago, I had an opportunity to spend time with family in Oman. I was bowled away by the country’s natural beauty, the rugged mountains juxtaposed against magnificent beaches and the dates served everywhere. But somehow, I missed an opportunity to taste good Omani bread and it was an Anthony Bourdain episode on this country that got me curious. One of the first breads I came across was Maldouf, a date flatbread also known as a date chapati. The combination of ground dates and ghee sounded divine, something that would appeal to my sweet toothed parents and in-law, but the egg in the dough was something I wanted to skip.

I started with a recipe from the local paper in Oman, The Oman Times and tweaked it to come up with this. The dates add just a hint of sweetness, the cardamom makes it a tad bit exotic and the ghee leads to the flaky delectable layers.

It takes a bit of time to roll out the dough, but the end result is so worth it. Have it warm as it comes off the griddle or serve it at room temperature with a spicy curry.

Ingredients:

  • 15 pitted dates
  • 1 cup atta (chapati flour) – you can use white whole wheat flour instead
  • 1 1/4 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp cardamom powder
    ½ tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 tsp kosher salt.
  • ¼ cup ghee
  • Ghee for shallow frying bread
  • Flour for rolling out bread

How to:

1. Soak the dates in one cup of boiling water for one hour and then grind to a paste with the water in a blender.

2. Once the date paste is ready, whisk the atta, white whole wheat flour, cardamom, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl. Add the ghee and mix with your hand till it gets a bit crumbly.  Add the date puree and mix the dough well till it all comes together and forms a soft pliable dough.

3. Divide the dough into 12 balls, roll in your hands till smooth, and set aside covered by a damp towel for an hour.

4. Take one ball at a time.  Place on a lightly floured board and roll out into circle, about 6-7 inches in diameter.  With a pastry brush, brush the circle with ghee.  Fold dough from opposite sides to the center, slightly overlapping the ends. Brush some more ghee and bring the other sides to the center forming a square.  Press the dough down, and spread the square into a larger one with 6 inch sides. Repeat with all dough balls.

5. Cook each bread on a medium hot griddle adding some ghee on the sides.  When the bread starts puffing (about 1/2 a minute or so), flip it over and cook till both sides and have nice brown spots.

 

Cheers to a sweet indulgence that breaks no “keto” rules

Yesterday afternoon, my husband and I were at Saravana Bhavan for lunch.  Me hankering for my favorite combination platter, him scanning for his keto friendly options.  And when my plate came with sheera (a cream of wheat dessert), he was not a happy camper.  It was like a three-year-old who wanted to have the same dessert, but his disciplined nature would not allow him to!

Back home, I kept hearing the little groans of wanting a similar dessert.  So, with the ingredients in our pantry and fridge, I whipped up these almond dessert cups.  He loved them and of course, I was happy that they were ready in about 20 minutes (minus the refrigeration time, if you prefer it cold).

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 cups milk (I used 2% since that’s what I had at home)
  • .5 cup heavy cream
  • 1.5 cups almond flour
  • 1 cup allulose (you could use erythritol)
  • 1 tsp cardamom powder
  • 2 tsp sliced almonds (plus a few more for decorating)
  • 4 tsp ghee

How To:

1. Pour the milk and heavy cream into a heavy bottom pan and warm the mixture ever so slightly over a low flame.

2. Turn off the stove, sprinkle the almond flour, allulose, and cardamom powder into the milk/cream mixture and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon or spatula.

3. Turn the stove back on, add the ghee and keep stirring the mixture at medium heat till it thickens and is the consistency of thick glue (about 15 minutes).

4. Turn off the stove and portion the dessert into six little cups and top with the remaining almonds.

Enjoy!

PS.  You can have it warm or serve it cold after sticking it in the fridge for an hour.

First blush of love with kohlrabi

Yes, you might say that for someone who cooks often, I’ve been living under a rock.  I had never tasted kohlrabi and while I had spotted it at farmers’ markets, I had never adventured to cook with it.  But all that changed with a recent discovery – that it is a versatile vegetable that is low in carbs.

“What does it taste like?”, I asked my favorite farmer.  She said it had the slight spiciness of a radish married with the crispness of a green apple.  I proceeded to buy a bunch and cautiously tasted a slice.  The taste and the texture translated into my aha moment – this might be a good low carb substitute for potatoes in any number of dishes, enabling my husband to indulge in a version of some of his favorite high carb foods.

The stew that I created is a favorite from my childhood days.  Dad and mom made this concoction of ginger, green chilies, potatoes, onions and coconut milk which was the perfect accompaniment to steamed rice or fresh bread.  Out went the potatoes and in came the kohlrabis to make their debut in this simple, yummy comfort food which turned out to be a big hit.

Ingredients:

  • 3 medium-sized farm fresh kohlrabi, skin removed and chopped into cubes
  • 1 large red onion chopped into pieces the same size as the kohlrabi
  • 6 green chilies, 2 finely chopped and four sliced vertically (less if you can’t tolerate heat)
  • 1.5-inch piece ginger finely chopped
  • 1 tsp salt (or more to taste)
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • A few sprigs of curry leaves (optional)

How To:

1. Place all the ingredients except the coconut milk in a pan, cover the vegetables with water and cook covered till the kohlrabi is firm but done – a fork inserted should slide in easily, but the vegetable should retain its shape (about 15-20 minutes).  At this point, there will be some water in the pan, but it will not be watery.

2. Add the coconut milk, mix gently and simmer the mixture for a few minutes.

3. Turn off the stove and wait 10 minutes before serving the stew with steamed rice or bread.

4. The result is super yum and a gift for those on a low carb diet.

Tip 1:  You could also puree this and serve it as a soup and it tastes amazing, the combination of chilies and coconut milk playing a tropical dance on your tongue!

Tip 2: You could use cauliflower instead of kohlrabi for another lovely low carb version as well.

If you cook kohlrabi frequently, I’d love to hear your suggestions!