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Masala Chicken Casserole….

Yudhika's Masala Chicken Casserole....

Yudhika’s Masala Chicken Casserole….

Did somebody press the freeze button? I spent a few days in Cape Town and it seemed like the weather gods have been creating havoc….snow, rain and the worst part…the wind. The weather was awful but I still love Cape Town…and not even the weather could dampen my spirits. My colleague and GIBS Goldman Sachs graduate, Dudu Mofokeng and I were asked to join the UN Women and Facebook as panelists on the ‘Boost Your Business’ workshop! I was and am truly humbled to be a part of this initiative and will be posting more information about it in my next blogs.

Competition time...The AMC 30cm Skillet worth R3200

Competition time…The AMC 30cm Skillet worth R3200

There is some other news too…today we announce the winner of the fabulous AMC skillet…just another way that AMC Cookware and I share our happiness and love for food! The prize is worth R3200 and will be a beautiful addition to an existing set of pots or as the first one in your AMC collection….and the winner is…..ta daaaaa….YAAVNA MOODLEY! Congratulations, Yaavna…we will be in touch to arrange the delivery! I would like to thank all of you who entered the competition and follow the blog…stay tuned for the next competition!

With the weather being this awful, I thought I should also share a recipe that is slightly different to our usual curries….stock cubes and tinned tomatoes are not standard ingredients in the Indian pantry but have become part of my kitchen must-haves. I suggest serving this casserole with mashed potatoes and bread too. The bread is great for mopping up the spicy sauce.

Happy cooking, everyone….stay warm and hearty!

Masala Chicken Casserole

1,4kg chicken portions, thighs and drumsticks
15ml sunflower oil

30ml sunflower oil
1large onion, thinly sliced
4 green chillies, sliced
10ml cumin seeds
20ml coriander seeds
4 cardamom pods
10ml black pepper
25ml crushed ginger and garlic
20ml red chilli powder
2ml turmeric
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
200ml boiled water
1 stock cube
Salt, to season
50ml full fat yoghurt, optional
Fresh coriander, to garnish

Here’s how

Heat a 28cm AMC Chef’s Pan and pour in the sunflower oil.
Seal the chicken skin side down in batches until deep golden in colour.
Remove the chicken from the pan and leave aside.

Heat the sunflower oil in a 30cm AMC Gourmet Pan.
Saute the sliced onion until pale golden in colour.
While the onion is cooking, place the cumin, coriander, cardamom and black pepper in a mortar.
Ensure the cardamom is finely pounded and leave aside.
Once the onions are golden, add the green chillies.
Stir the ginger and garlic into the onions and fry for a few seconds.
Add the red chilli powder and turmeric, mix to heat the spices for a few seconds.
Place the sealed chicken into the pan and stir to coat in the red chilli.
Add the pounded spices and stir well, taking care not to burn them.
Add the chopped tinned tomatoes and boiled water.
Crumble the stock cube into the pan and season very lightly with salt.
Simmer on a low heat until the chicken is tender.
Dilute the yoghurt in 30ml cold water and add to the chicken.
Once the sauce thickens and coats the chicken pieces, garnish with fresh coriander.

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No Bake Cheesecake….

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Here is a quick and easy cheesecake recipe that Amrisha requested on facebook!  To watch the ‘how to video’ click on this link:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LIMn-4QkNLc

No bake cheesecake:

Ingredients:

1 – 1,5 packets Tennis biscuits

125g – 150g melted butter, to bind biscuits

4 eggs, seperated
435ml Spar whitesugar
35ml gelatine
50ml cold water
30ml lemon juice
2 tubs Spar smooth cottage cheese (low fat)
190ml Spar Greek yoghurt
250ml fresh cream
300g fresh berries in season, optional
150ml dark chocolate, melted in double boiler

Here’s how:

Crush the biscuits in a food processor.

Mix crushed biscuits and butter in a mixing bowl.

Add a little extra butter if necessary and press this mixture into the base of a loose bottomed 25cm cake tin.

Refrigerate while the filling is being prepared.

Sprinkle the gelatine over cold water and leave aside to sponge for a few minutes.

Gently heat the gelatine in a small pan on low to dissolve.

Beat the egg whites adding 250ml sugar in total – Add sugar gradually until soft peaks form.

Whisk the fresh cream until firm.

Place the egg yolks in top of a double boiler.

Add the 185ml of the remaining sugar into the yolks until light and fluffy.

Pour in the gelatine and then add lemon juice.

Continue whisking until well combined.

Remove from the double boiler and then add the cottage cheese with yoghurt.

Fold in the whisked egg whites and then the fresh cream.

Stir in the fresh berries or place them on top when the cake is set.

Leave in a refrigerator to set.

Run a warm knife around the cake tin to loosen the sides.

Remove the cake from the tin by pushing the base upward.

Swirl the melted chocolate over the cheesecake and refrigerator until set.

Garnish with fresh berries.

Blast from the past!

Classic Melting Moments

I am a huge fan of Facebook…I love the photos and status updates particularly because I miss the old days when ‘visiting’ was a weekend activity.  Well, Facebook is like visiting….I really do feel like I am in touch and up to speed with the goings on.

I also get recipe requests on Facebook.  That’s the upside….the downside for me is that I don’t post recipes that have not been tried and tested, especially if I have not cooked it up for ages.  While I was away recently, I was sent a message by Delaine Chetty requesting a recipe for ‘Melting Moments’.  My childhood memories came rushing back….delicious melt in the mouth biscuits sandwiched together with vanilla icing…Oh yum….I love my job!  I always have an excuse to cook or bake something decadent.

I got to the refrigerator and hauled out a few blocks of Spar butter (I am going to have to replenish my stash soon!).  It took just a few minutes to make up the biscuit dough – I ran into some trouble with piping the biscuits.  I use the disposable plastic piping bags which tend to break easily with a biscuit dough…they do work really well with icing and meringues though.    I muttered a few curses when I realised I had broken the last bag and then started rolling the dough into balls.  They were just as delicious even if they were different to the piped sort that I was familiar with as a child.

There are lots of different variations to this recipe but here is one of my favourites which is the Classic version.

Classic Melting Moments

Ingredients

200g Spar butter

125ml castor sugar

1 egg

2 – 3 drops vanilla essence

275ml flour

120ml cornflour

120ml custard powder

2,5ml baking powder

Pinch of salt

Here’s how:

Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees celsius.

Sift the flour, cornflour, custard and baking powder twice.

Add the salt to the sifted dry ingredients.

Cream the butter and gradually add the sugar.

Scrape the bowl to ensure that all the butter is creamed.

Continue beating until light and fluffy.

Add the egg yolk and a teaspoon of flour and continue beating until well combined.

Add the vanilla essence and beat for a few seconds.

Drop the sifted dry ingredients into the cream butter and egg mixture.

Use your fingertips to work the ingredients into a soft dough.

Roll the dough into little balls and place them on a greased baking tray.

Use a fork to press the balls down lightly.

Bake for 10 minutes or until the base of the biscuits are golden brown.

Leave to cool on a wire rack.

To prepare the icing:

70ml soft Spar butter

160ml icing sugar

15ml full cream milk

Cream the butter until light and fluffy.

Sift the icing sugar into the butter and continue beating on the lowest speed.

Continue beating until the icing is light and well combined.

Add milk and beat for a few seconds.

Use a palette knife and spread a little icing onto the flat side of half the biscuits.

Sandwich the biscuits with the remaining halves.

Yudhika’s tips:

I always use butter when I make these….when a recipe asks for butter, marg just won’t do.

I weigh each ball of dough with an electric scale.  They should weigh around 15g and you should get about 40 biscuits in total on the baking tray.

Rinse your hands often when rolling the dough into balls – this prevents the dough from sticking to your palms.