Sunday, 17 May 2009
As healthy as I’d like to be, I just can’t say no to bit of southern fried chicken. Everyday after returning from school I’d pay a visit to the local Perfect Fried Chicken and buy myself one piece chicken and chips. Fortunately growing older has made me slightly more wiser and those days are long gone.
However I do love making it at home, with my own homemade coating and marinade. I’ve had a few phone calls about this recipe in the past (You know who you are!!) so I thought it’d be best if I posted it rather than repeat myself over and over again.
I apologies for quality of the pictures my camera decided to die on me before could get a better shot.
I have put down chicken drumsticks and thighs, but this goes perfectly fine with boneless chicken.
1.500g Chicken drumsticks and thighs
2.1 Cup Buttermilk
3.1 Cup Milk
4.1 Tbsp Cayenne Pepper
5.1 Clove of Garlic (minced)
6. Salt and Pepper to taste- Not too much salt as the coating also has salt.
1.3 Cups Plain Flour
2.3 Tbsp Cayenne Pepper
3.2 Tbsp Garlic Powder
4.1 Tbsp Onion Salt
5.1Tbsp Garlic Salt
6. I Tsp Smoked sweet Paprika – Normal Paprika will do if you don’t have any
7.1 ¼ Tbsp Black Pepper
8. I ½ Tbsp Salt
9.2 Tbsp Mixed Herbs
10. ½ Tsp citric acid
11.1 Tsp Caster Sugar.
1. For the marinade, combine all the ingredients for the marinade and coat the chicken in a shallow dish. Cover and leave for at least and hour or over night if possible.
2. Combine all the ingredients for the coating. Remove the chicken from the marinade and dip into the flour mixture. Fully coat the chicken and return to the fridge for 90 – This will make the coating wet and allow the coating to stick to the chicken and make it crispier when you fry.
3. Pre-heat oven Gas Mark 5
4. Heat some sunflower or vegetable oil in a frying pan and pace chicken inside. Fry until golden brown all over.
5. Transfer chicken into a heatproof dish and a place in the oven for 20-25 minutes until chicken is cooked all the way through.
6. There may be excess oil at the bottom of the dish so I'd advise you transfer chicken into another dish.
Monday, 2 March 2009
The last name i tried was foolproof foodie, which i liked very much. It was easy to remember and rolled off the tongue nicely. But i wanted a name that related more to me and that's when i thought of Anglo-Indian Cook. I think it describes me and my style of cooking perfectly.
Being of Indian descent and being brought up in England has resulted in an often weird but wonderful concoction of Indian and English flavours amalgamated into one. I think most Indians would agree with me that we just can't help adding Indian flavours into English dishes.
The combinations however don't stop there. We continue this obsession with almost every dish, whether that be an Italian or Chinese dish.
I have found that sometimes it's not too wise to meddle too much, but most times the flavours work really well.
I know i havn't posted any Indian dishes yet, but i shall do very soon so keep posted :)
I love both eating and making savoury food. I can do it with ease, breath normally and do it quickly. I like to think I can do the same with desserts. Unfortunately when it came to baking, my skills and knowledge of cooking savoury dishes just didn’t seem to cut it. I used to get so stressed out, hyperventilate in-between and then end up chucking whatever I made in the bin. One year for my brothers birthday (I apologise if you’re reading this) I even resorted to buying a ready made cake mix, and passing it off as my own, it looked good, tasted ok and nobody was none the wiser.
Not being able to bake really stressed me out. Instead of giving up, I decided to work out the root of my problem. Through a little bit of research and self assessment I worked out a few of those problems.
My problems: Being impatient, being heavy handed and trying to cut too many corners.
I’ve always been an impatient person. I like things being done quickly, be that cooking, walking or talking, it just needs to be done quickly. Now this can often be an advantage, unfortunately for me being fast whilst baking is not always a good skill to have. Baking requires patience; things need to be done slowly. Vigorously folding flour will never help a cake to rise.
Cutting corners also links to being impatient and I think so does the heavy handedness.
So after working out the root of the problem I decided to confront my problem, not eradicate, as my problem can be quite useful sometimes.
And guess what? It worked. I wouldn’t say I’ve perfected the art of baking because art is what it is, I still have a long way to go, but I’m getting there. Slowly.
My three favourite things to bake so far are: cheesecake, profiteroles and coconut sponge. Don’t get me wrong I have attempted many other things but these three always turn out well.
I’ve baked the coconut Victoria sponge quite a few times now, but always for other people. My mums been wanting to eat for a while, I think it gives her a feeling of nostalgia, buying a Victoria sponge for our birthdays. Every year, for all our birthdays and cousins birthdays we’d have a 99p Victoria sponge from Iceland’s or Kwiksave. Fortunately we can be a little more extravagant these days.
I had a few people round yesterday so decided to bake one to have with some custard.
The cake was a hit, I had a few problems but all turned out well in the end. Everybody loved the cake, well, at least they told me they did and the empty bowls also suggested they did.
If you've had problems in the past like me i advise you to start with this simple sponge cake. It doesn't take too much skill just a little patience, love and care.
175g/6oz Golden caster sugar
175g/6oz Self-raising four
1 1/2 Tspn baking powder
50g/2oz dessicated coconut
2 Tbsp coconut cream- You can use single cream if you have no coconut cream
Buttercream & Filling
280g/10oz Icing sugar
3 Tbsp Coconut cream- Again you can use single cream if you prefer.
4-5 Tbsp Raspberry or Strawberry jelly.
1. preheat the over to gas mark 4/180c.
2. Butter two 8inch sandwich tins and line them with greaseproof paper.
3. Mix together butter, sugar, flour, baking powder and eggs- This can be done using your hands, food processor, electric whisk or a freestanding mixer.
4. Divide the mixture between the two sandwich tins - Give it a little shake to make sure it's nice and even.
5. bake for 25mins until golden brown and firm. To be sure it's cooked all the way through , put a skewer through the middle if it comes out clean then your done, if not leave it in the oven till it does.
6. Leave in tins for 5-10 mins. loosen the edges and take out tins and place on wire rack. let the cakes cool completely.
7. Make the buttercream: beat together icing sugar, butter and coconut cream until smooth.
8. Spread jam on one of the cakes and a quarter of the butter cream on the other cake.
9. Sandwich together and spread the remaining buttercream on top.
I don’t know about you, but I have this weird habit, that when I go out to eat or eat something which I am not able to obtain the recipe for I sit there and try to dissect what has gone into the food so I can recreate it when I get home.
I don’t always get it right, but on some occasions I do. Lemon chilli sweet corn is one of the simpler ideas I’ve picked up. I wouldn’t call it a dish, more a snack. It’s so simple to put together, within minutes you’ll have a nice yummy snack. I’m warning you though this really has a kick to it, so if you don’t like spicy food then please omit the cayenne pepper or use less of it.
250g Frozen Sweetcorn – You can use tinned if you like or fresh from a cob if in season.
1 heaped Tbsn Cayenne Pepper
¼ Tspn Salt
1 heaped Tspn Mixed ground coriander and cumin (Dhana Jeeru) – If you don’t have mixed just mix half Tspn of each.
1 Tbsn Fresh coriander.
1. Boil Sweet corn for 3-4 mins until tender all the way through. Try not to do it for longer as the sweetcorn often becomes hard and chewy.
2. Strain water.
3.Whilst still hot toss in the rest of the ingredients. Make sure all the spices are well incorporated.
4. Let the sweetcorn stand for a min, so the flavours can amalgamate with each other.
5. Sprinkle with coriander.
I realise I haven’t posted anything substantial yet. Like I said before, a little difficult with the lighting. And going through everybody else’s amazing blog’s I’m a little bit intimidated. But I shall post soon (hopefully).
Friday, 21 November 2008
Yum!. My favouritest sandwich ever! I apologise in advance, this is a quick post, I'm in the middle of cooking so need to go back into the kitchen.
Anyways back to the sandwich, yum! i had this for my lunch today, so simple and quick to put together. Within 5 mins my lunch was ready. And that's including time to put together some dessert.
I think the reason I love this sandwich so much is because of it's simplicity, and I don't just mean the simplicity of making it. No, I mean the simplicity of the flavours and the beautiful taste you get from it.
Now, how to put it together, before i start drooling over the keyboard just thinking about it.
2 slices of Granary bread -I use Warburtons, because i love the combination of nuts and seeds. (You have to use granary. If you've never tried it before, it might take a little getting used to but I'm telling you, you'll love it. If you really can't stand it, then please wholemeal at least. The last resort- white bread.
1 Tbsp of Homemade Pesto.
4 Slices of Tomato
25g Feta Cheese (That's a small piece around 2" by 1").
1. Toast the bread on both side - I would advise you only do this if your eating straight away, otherwise the bread will just go soggy. I toast mine because i love the contrasting sensations of hot and cold in my mouth.
2. Spread pesto on one side of the bread.
3. Place tomato in each corner.
4. Crumble feta on top of tomatoes.
5. Place second slice of bread on top.
7. Your done!
Now dessert. 'Dessert for lunch' i hear you say, gasping in horror. 'Yes', i say. 'dessert for lunch', smiling to one's self. 'What may that be' i hear you say. 'Grapes!' I say.
Unfortunately, I'm no wonder woman. I can't rustle up lunch AND dessert in 5 mins. Some don't classify fruit as a dessert, some do. I fall into the latter category. I think for lunch, fruit is a perfect accompaniment. When at work, i always, always have some fruit for lunch. If I've forgotten mine, there's always someone at work who has some, and is willing to share.
These grapes were so lovely and sweet, so it satisfied my sugar craving and kept hunger locked up till dinner!
I've gone a little bit arty with my pic today, just playing around with photoshop a bit. See what it could do. I'm hoping photoshop will help my lack of natural light problem and make my pictures more fun and pleasing to the eye.Did i say a quick post? Oops!
Monday, 17 November 2008
Guacamole or Guac, which it's more commonly known as apparently comes from Spain. See I've always been under the impression that it was Mexican, but apparently not. I'm not sure the source that it's from Spain is correct, but wherever it's from it sure is yummylicious!
When i first tried guacamole i hated it. I hated it so much that i spat it out, guess who made it? Tesco's. My dad loved avocados, he liked it pureed with some cream in it. So i decided to try it, and guess what? I loved it, that beautiful creamy,nutty, buttery flavour was just so yum! And the health benefits should make you love it just for the benefits sake. Although it has a high fat content, it contains the good fat (monosaturated). It also contains 60% more potassium than bananas, it has more fiber then any other fruit and is packed with vitamins B, E and K!. See i told you it was good for you.
Ever since finding new love for avocados, I've been scouring the web for a good traditional guacamole recipe which is simple but del'ish. i finally found one the other day and after reading the reviews i knew it was the 'one'.
Here it is: Simply Recipes -Perfect Guacamole.
I pretty much followed this recipe to the tee. I only added one chilli as i thought it might overpower the flavour, i thought one was perfect.
Tip: keep the stone to your avocados. Once you have finished making your guac, if your not going to eat it right away, place the stones in the guac, and cover tightly with cling film. if you don't do this the flesh will oxidize and turn brown quickly, which isn't too appealing.
So what can you do with it? It's traditionally eaten as a dip with tortilla crisps or added on top of tacos. I had mine today spread in a baguette with some tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce and feta. Yum!
I would usually substitute the cheese, but I've found that most cheeses which, would be suitable also contain rennet. So I've decided to omit the cheese altogether.
The verdict: i honestly don't miss the cheese, it tastes lighter and just as good. I've tweaked it a little from traditional pesto recipes, to suit my preferences and reduce the cals. But please feel free to tweak it and make it your own.