Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Tava/Pan Fried Mutton Shami Kebab

I have been away for a while from active food blogging, as I had to tender and look into many personal matters and one of them being a relocation again. Now, I have lost the counts how many times I have relocated. But it feels like home coming to UK once again as per written analogy. Malaysia was a fabulous experience. Someday I want to go back again there, to relive our wonderful memories.

When we landed in UK, that same whiff of air hit me again, a sense of familiarity among unfamiliar faces engrossed into their smartphones. It took us for a while to get settled over here.
Let’s hope, I will try to update this space more often. With spring blossoms on full vigour and Holi festival coming up near, thought this will be a nice beginning for this space.
I had lamb mince and wanted to make some kebabs. This recipe was an impromptu attempt on my part and glad it turned out nice. I have used store bought spice mix just to enhance the flavour more. But if you genuinely want to make it from scratch, then I would suggest to grind all the spices in home. Otherwise in this busy world, I guess the store bought spice packets are very handy.These were like melt in mouths kebabs and also I have tried to use less oil to pan fry them.
Now to the recipe

Pan/Tava fried Mutton Shami Kebab
Recipe requirements
  • Lamb/Mutton mince/ keema- 400gms
  • Chana dal – 1 and ½ cup
  • 1 big purple onion
  • 3-4 big garlic cloves
  • 1 medium size tomato
  • 5-6 green chillies
  • Spices and seasoning
  • 3 tsp of coriander powder
  • 2 tsp of cumin powder
  •  2 tsp of garam masala
  • 3 tsp of tandoori masala
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon powder
  •  2-3 tsp of red pepper powder
  • 2-3 tsp of freshly grounded black pepper
  • 1 tsp of salt or as per taste
  •  2-3 tbs of cooking oil for pan frying

  • Wash the lentils and put it in pressure cooker. Add about 1 cup of water. Let it simmer on high flame, skim out the froth form the lentils.
  • Now add in 400 Gms of lamb mince or mutton keema.Add in 1 cup of water.
  • Chop onion, garlic and tomatoes and add them with the dal and mince.
  • Add salt, red pepper powder, coriander powder, tandoori powder, and cumin powder. Check the water content, it should come up to the level of the mixture properly but shouldn’t be more than the content, otherwise the lentils will be soggy and that is what we don’t want.
  • Let it cook for 2 whistles. Lower the flame and let it simmer for 7-10 mints. Put off the flame and let the pressure subside. Open the lid and let it cool.
  • Take out the mince+ lentil mixture in a big mixing bowl. Squeeze out excess liquid with your hands.
  • Now add rest of the spices- cinnamon powder, garam masala and freshly grounded black pepper powder. Adjust salt and hotness if required with red pepper powder. Add in finely chopped green chillies. Knead and mix the mixture very well.
  • Refrigerate the mixture for about an hour so that the mixture gets firmer and it will be easy to shape up patties.
  • Put a non-stick tava/skillet on flame at medium flame.
  • Drop about a tsp of oil .Take out the lamb mince mixture and shape them into patties. This much mixture, I end up making about 17-18 shami kababs.
  • Tava fry them for about 3-4 mints at medium flame or they turn and have a nice dark brown crust.
  • Take out and serve.

Wish you all a very Happy Holi.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Brownie- Easy recipe

I am not an ardent fan of brownie, as the amount of butter that goes into making them, makes me queasy. But on a lighter note, I am also not that rigid. I would rather have it as occasional treat than to never have them or never made them reality phase. Dear daughter was craving for these brownies and that’s how it was made and relished.

This is a very basic recipe for brownie. Use of good quality chocolate powder and chocolate chips makes the brownie more flavourful.

Now to the recipe
Recipe requirements
  • ¾ cup of flour
  • ½ cup + 2 tbs of sugar
  • 100 Gms of butter
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup of Caotina/chocolate powder
  • 1 cup of chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp of vanilla essence
  • ¼ tsp of salt

  • Melt butter in Microwave for about 30-40 sec. Take out the bowl and add in chocolate powder and sugar .Melt chocolate chips also in a separate bowl.Mix ingredients of both the bowls very well.
  • Now in a separate bowl, add in flour, baking powder and salt. Mix well.
  • Add in 1 egg at a time and vanilla essence mixing in very well .Add 2nd egg also, blending well.
  • Now add the chocolate powder,chocolate chips, sugar and butter mixture to the flour mixture.
  • Prepare a square baking tray.Pour the brownie batter to the tray.
  • Bake brownies at 160 deg C for 30-35 mints or the middle of the brownie cooks through well.
  • Take out and cool. Enjoy.

Happy Cooking 

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Ikan Tongkol/Tongol Tuna Fish curry

I have recently tried Tongkol fish here in Malaysia. This fish reminds me of Tuna, actually the texture for this fish is very similar to Tuna, as both the fish belongs to the same group. The size is small as compared to big Tuna. This fish curry turned out very flavourful and fresh fish tastes way better than those canned tuna that we get in most of Western countries, plus point is, this fish has lower or no mercury contamination as compared to the larger tuna chunks.

Any tuna recipe can be very well replaced by Tongkol. So, the steamed Tongol pieces can be made into delicious croquettes recipes and can also be used in as a filling in sandwiches or rolled up in a roti-wrap. These Togkol fish wraps can be made ahead and stored in fridge. You can replace chicken or other meat from many such recipes and include Tongol fish. The fish is firm and has a lovely texture.
Now to our usual way of making fish, Tongol Fish curry in a Bengali style with garlic and ginger and some spices.
Ikan Tongkol/Tongkol Tuna Fish Curry
Recipe requirements
  •  Tongol Tuna Fish – 3-4 medium size fish cut into three pieces
  • ¼ inch ginger root
  • 2-3 garlic
  • 1 large tomato
  • 1 cup of coriander leaves

For tempering and seasonings
  • 2 tsp of turmeric powder
  • 1 and ½ tsp of red pepper powder
  •  1 tsp of coriander powder
  • ½ tsp of cardamom powder
  • ½ tsp of cinnamon powder
  • 1 tsp of salt or as per taste
  • 3-4 green chillies
  • 1 tsp of cumin seeds
  • 6-7 tbs of mustard oil

  • Marinate fish pieces in salt and turmeric powder.
  • Heat up a fry pan. Add 3-4 tbs of mustard oil, fry fish pieces for about 3-4 mints each side. Take out in a separate plate.
  • In that fry pan itself, add more mustard oil, add in cumin seeds, green chillies slit in between.
  • Add in grated ginger and garlic. Fry 1-2 mints at med-high flame or till a nice garlicky smell starts coming.
  • In a small bowl, add in turmeric powder, red pepper powder, coriander powder, cardamom powder, cinnamon powder and salt and give a nice mix with bit of water just to dissolve all the dry ingredients. This masala paste will be required now.
  • Add in chopped tomato now. Fry the tomatoes till oil separates out. Add in half cup of chopped coriander leaves and the masala paste. Keep on frying this masala paste for about 5-7 mints or till the masala gets little bit dry and oil separates out.
  • Now add in fried Tongol tuna fish pieces. Add in 2 cups of water and lower the flame. Let it cook for about 8-10 mints.
  • Add in chopped coriander leaves for garnishing and take out in a serving bowl.
  • Serve warm with rice.
Happy Cooking 

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Best Places for eating out in Kuala Lumpur -family friendly

I have blogged about best places for eating out options in Kuala Lumpur in my previous post. You can find details here. This is another part of that growing list of eating joints. Kuala Lumpur is a foodie’s paradise with so many options to choose and the list is endless.

This makes it difficult to pick and sort. Like previous post the only criteria for this post is also family-oriented, so I have skipped bars and pubs. Although Kuala Lumpur has its fair share of these places as well. Bukit Bintang, Bangsar and central Kuala Lumpur, especially near KLCC point, there are many bars and pubs. We haven’t been to those places, so can’t elaborate much and also we don't go out for eating on weekdays. But those are very touristy places and food price wise is little hyped.
There are some relaxing places in other adjoining areas, where food is delicious and well worth it. The satellite city Petaling Jaya is one such nice and lovely place with many good options of bars and pubs. Just to name a few- 1.The Roof which offers impressive 360 deg View from its rooftop arena just like the name suggests. 2. Dukes and Duchess-a neighbourhood pub with warm and friendly locals. In Bangsar – 1.Mercat Barcelona gastro bar serving Spanish.2 The Social and 3.Alexis bistro just to name a few.
Talking about local places – I should mention Masjid India and Brickfield, where one can explore various Indian restaurants as well.
Below mentioned eating joints are all family friendly. We have been frequenting couple of these places and are very much in love with them.
  1.  Bala’s Banana leaf – Bangsar .This is another great place for local food served over banana leaf. They have pick, eat and pay options as well. I really liked their Madras filter coffee in small steel glasses. Price-$$
  2.  Three little pigs and a wolf- Bangsar -Non-Halal – so what’s in a name? Everything. As the name suggests, it’s a non-halal restaurant. I haven’t tried the lunch menu as such. But really liked their cafĂ© latte, cappuccino and varieties of cakes and desserts.
    They have a nice kids playing area with various toys and books for hyper active kids, while parents can enjoy their meal and also watch their kids play nearby all under one roof. Price-$$$
  3.   Delicious- Bangsar village – This is one posh dining option in Bangsar village 2.We have tried their pasta dishes and they turned out nice and flavourful. Last weekend we even did a take-away of some desserts. Their chocolate brownie with walnuts and red velvet cake are really worth trying, especially the brownie. Price-$$$
  4.  Manhattan Fish market– Mid valley shopping mall and Nu central shopping mall - Fish and I don’t need to add much. All the recipes are based on one main ingredient –fish. So, we have baked, poached and fried as well. We have tried their Greek inspired Mediterranean fish recipe and spicy baked fish which we found delicious. Their pepper mayo poached salmon burgers is one thing you should try if you visit this restaurant. Price-$$$
  5. Kenny roger’s Roasters- Outlets at various places in KL – Berjaya times square and 1 utama shopping mall -Roasted chicken with varieties of sides. Coleslaw, mashed potatoes triple bean salad, crisp garden salad etc. Their Nasi lemak ayam is worth trying. Price-$$$
  6. Bar B Q Nights– Jalan Perak- If you crave for kebabs then this is the place you should be visiting and plus point is it is very near to the main touristy attractions. In fact you can take a walk from KLCC Suria shopping mall to the this place but avoid doing during day hours .Nice and leisure stroll is recommended in evenings only. Their chicken reshmi kababs, malai kababs and various combo meal platters are worth trying. Price-$$$
  7.  Ted Boy bakery- Bangsar – Coffee and bakery goodies are best here. Egg baked Shakshouka and their hearty breakfast options are well worth mentioning here. Price-$$$
  8.  Absolute Thai – For a delectable Thai cuisine, you should visit here. Their spicy Thai Papaya salad and Pineapple fried rice, Pandan leaves chicken, stir-fried chicken with cashews, green curry, red curry and tom yam soup are worth trying. Price-$$$
  9. O’Brien’s Irish sandwich – If you are craving for some delicious sandwiches, then this is one of the best places to have perfect hand-crafted sandwiches. Their triple club sandwiches and smoked salmon sandwiches are worth trying. Price-$$$
  10.  Du Viet Vietnamese – Sunway pyramid – We came across this restaurant by chance when we were in Sunway pyramid shopping mall for ice-skating session.
    Traditional chicken and prawn noodles (Pho Ga Tom noodles), their ala-carte menu- lemongrass chicken
    stir-fried chicken with basil, Vietnamese sandwiches - Lamb Banh mi ,
    chicken banh mi are really delicious options over there.
    They have outlets in KLCC as well. Price-$$$
  11. Sarvana Bhavan- Bangsar – I don’t need to write their menu, everyone is fully aware of the menu. I personally like small idlis soaked in ghee sambhar.Price-$$
  12.   Delhi Royals – Fine Indian dinning option. This restaurant just like its many Indian counterparts in Malaysia has all the various orangey or dark or creamy and silky gravies that we can possibly imagine about Indian cuisine.Vegetarain recipes includes dal makhani and other paneer dishes. I was there with a group of ladies to attend a cookery show by their in-house chef on a particular day, as part of our Indian expat club outings. I personally liked the vegetarian kababs they served that day. Their chat varieties – papri chat and gulgappas are also worth trying. Price-$$$$
  13. Yellow apron – sec 13 Petaling Jaya, PJ- Actually this is mentioned here as my daughter had a lovely get-together for her friend’s birthday celebration there. They all loved the high-tea party, serving bites of various snacks and cakes and tarts with drinks. A lovely and clean place to hang out and spend time with friends and family. Price-$$$
  14.    Tokyo Secret- The choices for cakes and bakery makes my heart go gaga about the place.
    What not to like about it.
    Their Cheese Tarts are absolutely delicious. Price-$$
  15.  Lavender- One of the most busy bakery joint in Kuala Lumpur.Their PJ outlet in 1 Utama shopping mall is a very bustling place.
    Allow at least half an hour even if you want to do take-away on weekends.
    Their breads, cakes, scones,puffs, tarts and various baked goodies are absolutely delicious and fresh straight from the oven. They have outlets in mid-valley shopping mall, 1 Utama shopping mall and in Pavilion shopping mall also. Price-$$
  16.    The library Coffee bar – 1 utama shopping mall Petaling Jaya-  Grab a cup of coffee and a book and relax .Nice place to have a coffee break. Price-$$
  17.  Sushi in mid-valley- There is a small outlet for fresh Sushi in Mid valley mall right in front of Tokyo Secret coming out from Garden’s mall entrance which connects Mid valley shopping mall.
    The options for Sushi and Inari are many and are very tempting. I have liked their Californian rolls- smoky salmon, avocado , sweet corn and cucumber rolls are worth trying. Price-$$
  18.  ChaTime- If I don’t mention my favourite Chai outlet in Kuala Lumpur then the list is incomplete – Chatime in midvalley shopping valley. Personally I like their vanilla lite milk tea and basic chatime milk tea. They also serve various coffee drinks. Price-$$ 

Over these past years we have explored these various foodie places in Kuala Lumpur and liked it. This list is just an attempt to recall all the wonderful memories of Kuala Lumpur in one go and also if it help others to find good eating places, while living and working here as expats or coming here as a tourist, then the purpose of posting this blogpost is fulfilled.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Coconut Cookies

When I was making these coconut cookies, I was just putting up every ingredients as per my instinct. I had about 250 Gms of freshly grated coconut which I wanted to utilize. These cookies turned out nice and brown, after I took them out from oven. These turned little soft after they have cooled,leaving a nice coco nutty flavour and that it almost reminded me of ‘Thekua’ minus the crunchiness of the Thekua.
If I would have deep fried these cookies , I am sure they would have turned out exactly like Thekua.

Anyways since this is a baked version and also I happened to add eggs, I really can’t call it Thekua.
Thekua as you must be knowing is made during ‘Chat’ Puja in Bihar and in Puja ceremonies, all preparations are preferably vegetarian.
This recipe minus eggs and baking agents can still be made into Thekua.

These coconut cookies were more flavourful the next day.I also added bit of pineapple pieces not required though if you want to skip, can do so. If kept outside these remain fresh for 3-4 days, after that the flavour starts to deteriorate, as we have used freshly grated coconut.
If you wish, you can freeze or refrigerate them and use desiccated coconut in place of fresh coconut. This way the shell life may increase. I will suggest try consuming within 2-3 days.

Now to the recipe for these delicious coconut cookies
Coconut Cookies
Recipe requirements
  • 1 and half cup of whole meal flour/Atta flour
  • 250-300 Gms of fresh grated coconut
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • ½ cup of oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 and ½ tsp of baking powder
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • ½ tsp of salt

  • Whisk in eggs in a bowl well.
  • Take all the dry ingredients in a big mixing bowl. Whole meal flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda and mix well.
  •  In a separate bowl mix in oil and sugar well. Add in freshly grated coconut.
  • Now add egg mixture slowly into the flour bowl and mix. Add in oil, sugar and grated coconut mixture in batches and keep mixing till you use up whole of the content.
  • The dough will be collecting well, but still will be semi-soft. Keep this dough in fridge for about 3-4 hrs.
  • Take out and divide the dough into 4 portions. Roll each portions to long cylindrical shape and then cut in about a gap of 1 inch.
  • Prepare oven. Preheat it at 160 deg C.
  • Line a baking paper or foil over baking tray.
  • Place the portions at equal distance and gently press them with a fork.
  • Bake for about 20-25 mints or till they turn out nice and brown.
  • Take out and cool. Enjoy these delicious coconut cookies.

As we are approaching Eid soon, shopping malls are all decked up with lovely Eid decorations.

Grocer stores and super-markets are filled with gift hampers as well. Eid is a major festival and is joyfully celebrated in Malaysia.

Wish you all, who celebrate Eid, a very happy and joyous Eid.Enjoy and celebrate with good food

Eid Mubarak!