indian spices

Christmas recycled…..turkey pasta

Yudhika Sujanani's Recycled Turkey Pasta....

Yudhika Sujanani’s Recycled Turkey Pasta….

We have been hard at work with recipes…so while most people are having their yearly turkey, the Sujanani’s are ‘turkeyed’ out! It started around October when the Mela producer suggested we work on some spicy turkey recipes…we cooked up a few turkeys to find the best ones to share on the show!  Then Yogas Nair, editor of the Post Newspaper, also needed some festive recipes…it was back to the turkey….and then there is the blog too!  Turkey Turkey Turkey….and there are always those tired leftovers that sit in the refrigerator….tune into Mela on SABC 2 this week Sunday at 13h30 to get creative with Christmas leftovers when I will be making ‘Stuffed Curry Turkey Buns’ and ‘Phyllo Turkey Parcels’.  Watch the episode of Mela here where we prepare a Christmas menu with a spicy twist, https://yudhikayumyum.com/sabc-2s-mela-videos/mela-a-spicy-christmas/

 

I have come up with a few delicious ways to use up those leftovers…and one of my favourites is turkey pasta…and to really spice things up…I made a curried coconut turkey pasta!  Adding Indian spices to turkey livens up the leftovers….and creates a fantastic meal!  The best part is that it’s so super simple to prepare!  I made up a turkey pie which was just as good, click here for the recipe, https://yudhikayumyum.com/2014/12/21/turkey-express/

 

Use a few staple spices like red chilli, ground cumin, coriander and garam masala…I also use coconut milk in this sauce which adds a luxurious silky texture and richness to this simple pasta dish. Mild, medium or hot – the choice is yours!  Spice this up or down – you can even serve a little chopped green chilli in olive oil on the side.

 

About this sauce, use really good quality coconut milk…try finding Mae Ploy, Aroy D or Chao Koh…if you can’t find any of these, pop into your local Spar and use the Spar brand coconut cream! It really is the next best option.  Coconut milk can be quite deceiving….buy tried and tested brands ….sometimes even the more expensive ones turn your dishes into watery stews which can be terribly disappointing!

 

I use my own brand of spices in most of my recipes and sometimes it does seem like a long list of ingredients but do stock up your spice rack….I always say, ‘A well stocked spice rack is like having money in the bank!’  My Curry me Home spices are available at a few Spars around Gauteng and via mail order as well!  Click here to find out where you can pick up a bottle of Curry me Home spices or recipe books, https://yudhikayumyum.com/my-spar-stockists/

 

Turkey Pasta

 

Serves 4 – 6

 

Ingredients

 

 

500g cooked turkey meat

40ml sunflower oil

1 bay leaf

1 cinnamon stick

5ml mustard seeds

1 onion, finely chopped

7,5ml coarse salt

15ml desiccated coconut

30ml crushed ginger and garlic

10ml Curry Me Home red chilli powder

200g tinned tomatoes, chopped

5ml Curry Me Home ground cumin

5ml Curry Me Home ground coriander

5ml Curry Me Home garam masala

1ml turmeric

1 x 400g tin coconut milk

 

500g penne pasta

 

 

10ml sunflower oil

2,5ml cumin seeds

2 sprigs curry leaves

 

 

Here’s how:

 

 

Heat an AMC paella pan on medium.

Add the sunflower oil, then add the bay leaf and cinnamon stick.

Once the bay leaf turns a shade darker, add the mustard seeds.

When the seeds splutter, add the chopped onion, and salt.

Saute until the onion turns light golden brown, add the desiccated coconut – the coconut can burn quite easily if the oil is too hot so take care.

Add the ginger and garlic when the coconut starts to turn light golden and becomes fragrant.

Add the red chilli powder and stir for 3 – 5 seconds.

Add the chopped tomatoes, cumin, coriander, garam masala and turmeric.

Simmer until the tomatoes soften.

Use the back of a wooden spoon to break down the lumps in the sauce.

Once the tomatoes resemble thick paste, pour in the coconut milk.

Simmer for a minute, then add the turkey meat and warm through.

While the sauce is cooking, cook the penne according to the instructions on the packaging – I cook the pasta in salted water with a drizzle of oil.

Drain the pasta and reserve 100ml liquid.

Toss the pasta and turkey sauce and add reserved liquid only if the sauce is too thick.

Place the pasta on a serving plate.

Heat the sunflower oil in an AMC chef’s pan and add the cumin seeds.

Once they splutter, add the curry leaves and fry until they are crispy and fragrant.

Garnish the pasta with fried curry leaves and a drizzle of the cumin flavoured oil.

 

 

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The Food Mela…another reason to celebrate!

The Mela Family...left to right, Yarisha Singh, Kajal Bagwandeen, Yudhika Sujanani, Jailoshni Naidoo, Tevin Naidu, Farrah Mia, Fadeen Mia, Mishal Mookrey, and Zakeeya Patel

The Mela Family…left to right, Yarisha Singh, Kajal Bagwandeen, Yudhika Sujanani, Jailoshni Naidoo, Tevin Naidu, Farrah Mia, Fadeen Mia, Mishal Mookrey, and Zakeeya Patel

Life is beautiful…Life is colourful and now Life is Mela!  You must be wondering what a ‘Mela’ means?  Mela is an Indian fair.  Think bright colours, celebrations, delicious feasts and laughter…most importantly laughter!

A few months ago, I hosted a charity fundraising dinner for Richard Fienberg at Ethos Private Equity, and while preparing the feast, I received a call from the lovely Saira Essa who asked if I would shoot around 10 episodes for her new show.  I had worked with SABC 3’s Eastern Mosaic before but this was a ‘wow’ moment!

 

I couldn’t believe it….she promised to ring me a few days later and we set up a telephonic appointment…I waited by the phone…paced the garden at Holi Cow killing the lawn and then she rang…dead on time!  It suddenly began to sink in….this was really happening….what was I going to cook, what was I going to wear???

 

It just seemed too good to be true but the shoot was scheduled and we completed 17 food slots!  It was hard work, long hours and most importantly lots of laughs.  It seems that this is what the Mela team is all about.  I have now officially joined the team with Jailoshni Naidoo, Kajal Bagwandeen, Tevin Naidu, Mishal Mookrey, Farrah Mia, Fadeen Mia, and our very own South African ‘Material Girl’, Zakeeya Patel!  

 

So tune in to Mela, the all new Indian experience, starting Sunday, 31 August 2014 at 10h30!  

 

The girls...Yarish, Yudhika,Farrah and Zakeeya...

The girls…Yarish, Yudhika,Farrah and Zakeeya…

 

The boys....Mishal Mookrey, Tevin Naidu and Fadeen Mia

The boys….Mishal Mookrey, Tevin Naidu and Fadeen Mia

Mela team....SABC 2

Mela team….SABC 2

 

This big moment in my career calls for a celebration and Love begins with like….so ‘follow’ me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/YudhikaSujanani and leave a tweet about the competition! 

Click ‘Like’ on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/yudhika.sujanani and post your comment! 

OR log onto www.yudhikayumyum.com and post a comment…share the link, and you could be the winner of one of my kitchen ‘must have’ appliances, A KitchenAid Stand Mixer worth R6990!  

Love begins with 'LIKE' - click like or follow on facebook, twitter or the blog and leave a comment!

Love begins with ‘LIKE’ – click like or follow on facebook, twitter or the blog and leave a comment!

You have till the 1st October 2014 to post your comments and favorite moments in the comments section of this blog, Twitter or Facebook!  Terms and conditions apply.  

Pimping My Curry

Tanya Visser launched her first show, The Gardener Live, at the Pretoria Botanical Gardens last week.  I am not much of a gardener and certainly don’t have green fingers.  I once killed my cactus – although I followed the care instructions on the tag, it just seemed to wither away.  I go through phases where I feel I should try harder with gardening.  My latest attempt is herb gardening.  There were the stock standard herbs like parsley and thyme but also exotic herbs like Makrut lime and Vietnamese mint.  I will keep you posted on the developments in the herb garden.

 

I booked a stand at the Gardener Live to promote the Curry Me Home spices and recipe books.  The space was situated next to the Sun City team which was manned by the Executive Chef, Andrew Robertson.  So here I was happily enjoying the great weather when Chef Andrew challenged me to a curry cook off.  I know I make a pretty good curry but he is the Executive Chef!

Yudhika preparing for the Curry Cook Off

 

I was quite unprepared so I just moved my AMC electric cookware over to his stand with some spices and a few other ingredients.  And we were off – the challenge had begun.

On your marks…

 

Chef Andrew made a chicken curry with Indian spices, some wine and lashings of cream and butter.  The aroma was heavenly and he really made me curious – I have never made a curry with wine before.  I would best describe it as a Mauritian style curry.  It was completely different to the more traditional curries – he used red onions and marinated the chicken first.

 

I went with a Malaysian Chicken Curry with Curry Me Home spices, coconut milk, tamarind paste, fresh lime leaves and coriander.  This was a curry that I tasted in Kuala Lampur – the speed in which it was prepared makes it a winner!  It takes just ten minutes to prepare and is perfect for a midweek dinner.

 

Yudhika cooking up the Malayasian Curry

 

Chef Andrew cooked on gas with a non stick frying pan and I opted for the tried and tested option which was my fabulous AMC electric pan.

 

Ready Steady Plate

 

The audience was enthusiastic about the show and were keen to sample the dishes especially after the aromas wafted through the Botanical Gardens.  We plated our curries and placed them on the tasting table.  The speed at which the curries were devoured made choosing a winner unnecessary.

 

Chef Andrew’s Decadent Chicken Curry

Yudhika’s Malaysian Curry

Anyway, I have now decided to promote myself to Executive Chef Yudhika.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mother’s Day Blues

Raspberry sponge cake with meringue frosting

One day that has always troubled me is Mother’s Day (and maybe Father’s Day too).  The advertisements start coming out weeks before, to create feelings of guilt and obligation.  I don’t see articles full of constructive family bonding activities – it is rather about buying gifts, flowers or going out to lunch.

Well, I have decided to boycott the commercialism that surrounds Mother’s Day.  Flowers are always fabulous, but they are devilishly expensive and half the price at any other time.  Gifts – I would prefer to skip the fragrant soap and get a better birthday present rather.  And as for going out on Mother’s Day – you have to be joking!  Overcrowded restaurants, bad tempered and slow service, and disappointing quality food turned out by kitchens that are battling to cope with the volumes.  I don’t want another meal served at 3pm while sitting around being aggravated by kids who constantly zoom by me in their scooters!  I detest those scooters and parents who take their kids out with scooters to restaurants are a menace!  What are they thinking???

Take your mother out for a meal, of course you should.  But just don’t do it on Mother’s Day!  Make your own Mother’s Day a week earlier or later, or you could try my favourite – dining out on a Monday!  It chases away the Monday blues and gets the week off to a good start.

Ok, so now that we have agreed not to go out on Mother’s Day, what shall we do?  Mother’s Day is not about commercialism but it has become a day when families get together.  So, get a few bottles of mom’s favourite wine or champagne and get into the kitchen to cook something fabulous – in fact, go the whole hog and prepare a family feast – starters, mains and desserts.  Obviously, this is a good time to choose your mother’s favourite meal and not your own.

On Sunday, my family will be celebrating a family day and I will be preparing this quick and easy Chicken Breyani.  This is the cheats version so you can get in and out of the kitchen and really spend quality time with your family.  Chicken layered with basmati rice, lentils, aromatic spices and a few good glugs of cream – it is delicious.  The saffron infusion creates a perfumed aroma that wafts through our home.  Here is the video:

Spending too much time in the kitchen defeats the purpose of a get together on Mother’s Day.  End the meal with a Raspberry Meringue Cake.  This light, airy sponge is smothered in a meringue frosting and baked for a few minutes – it looks like a gooey marshmallow cake!

Raspberry Meringue Cake

Ingredients:

6 eggs

225ml castor sugar

5ml vanilla essence

375ml cake flour

15ml cornflour

15ml baking powder

Pinch of salt

90ml cold water

185ml sunflower oil

Raspberry jam, to sandwich cakes

Fresh raspberries to serve

Here’s how

Preheat oven to 180 degree celsius.  Grease and line three 20cm (8 inch) cake tins.  Sift the flour, salt, baking powder and cornflour twice.

Place the eggs in a large mixing bowl and beat using a hand held egg beater.  Gradually add in the castor sugar and continue beating.  The mixture must be light and should leave a trail on the surface that is visible for three seconds.

Add vanilla essence and fold in half the sifted dry ingredients into the egg mixture.  Add the cold water and then the remaining sifted flour.

Lastly fold in the sunflower oil.  Ensure that you have folded in the ingredients properly especially the batter at the bottom of the bowl.

Divide between the three cake tins and bake in a preheated oven for 12 – 15 minutes until the cake slightly shrinks away from the tin.

Let the cakes stand for a minute or two before turning them out onto a wire rack.  Leave to cool completely.

To assemble the cake:

Spread the raspberry jam over two of the sponges and sandwich the cakes together.

To make the meringue frosting:

Whisk 4 egg whites until soft peaks form.  Add 185ml sugar a little at a time until the meringue is stiff and holds its shape.  and sieve icing sugar over.  Place the cake on a baking tray and frost the cake with the meringue mixture.  Bake at 200 degrees celsius until the meringue is pale golden brown in colour.

Decorate with fresh raspberries.

Yudhika’s Tips

Use strawberry jam and fresh strawberries to garnish if raspberries are not available.

I usually serve this with whipped cream on the side or drizzled with woolies double thick cream.

Always make sure that your ingredients are thoroughly mixed before pouring the batter into the cake tins.  The oil tends to sink to the bottom so make sure you lift the batter from the bottom of the bowl to ensure it is well combined.

My personal choice for Mother’s Day – a pimped out scone!  I would always choose to kick off Mother’s Day with a delicious home baked scone with lashings of fresh cream and strawberry jam.  Here is my extra special recipe:

An absolute treat

Fresh Cream Scones

Ingredients

560g cake flour
30ml baking powder
30ml castor sugar
5ml salt
250g butter
3 eggs
200ml fresh cream

For the egg wash:
1 egg
10ml milk

To serve
Butter,
Strawberry Jam
Whipped Cream
Grated Cheese

Here’s how

Preheat oven to 200 degrees celsius.

Lightly beat the eggs and cream together.  Sift flour, salt and baking powder together in a large mixing bowl.

Cut the butter into little blocks and add to the sifted dry ingredients.  Lightly rub the butter into the flour using your fingertips.  When the mixture resembles crumbs, pour in the egg and cream mixture.

Gently mix the ingredients together and work into a soft dough.  Do not knead the dough.  The dough will be soft but not perfectly smooth.

Roll the dough into a ball.  Lightly flour the work surface and roll out the dough.  It should be about 2cm thick.

Dip the scone cutter into flour and cut out rounds or hearts.  Gather the off cuts and gently knead into a ball.  Repeat the process until all the dough has been used up.

Place the rounds on a greased baking tray.  Leave the tray in the refrigerator for 10 – 15 minutes.

Beat the egg and milk together and brush the top of the scones with this egg wash.

Bake for 10 – 12 minutes or until the scones are golden brown on the top and at the bottom.  Leave to cool on a wire rack.

Serve warm scones with butter, strawberry jam, cream or with grated cheese.

Yudhika’s Tips

Keeping the ingredients and dough as cold is possible is the secret to making good scones.

Buttermilk can be used instead of fresh cream.

Try not to let the egg wash drip onto the sides of the scones as it affects the shape when baking.

These scones can be frozen.  Remove scones from the oven before they begin to brown.  Leave to cool on a wire rack and then freeze.  Defrost the scones and then bake for 4 – 5 minutes in a hot oven until golden brown and heated through.