Salads and More

I have been looking at doing a Salad roundup on my blog for ever so long.Well here it is! These are an assortment of my absolute favourite ones. With ingredients like Beets,Olives,Cheese,Chicken,Corn and an assortment of Shredded Cabbage and yes Minced Chicken too,these recipes are sure to complement any dinner table. They  are an absolute delight served as  main course salads,that work great on  week-nights with grilled meats or fish or perhaps  just as is with some soup.Our family for one enjoy’s a good hearty salad with every meal.

Salad collage

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Meat Rendang: To Indonesia and back

I love entertaining.The idea of a perfect weekend for me is inviting a bunch of friends and cooking for them.Last night we did just that.A lovely evening spent catching up with wonderful friends.

I wanted to complement my thai chicken curry with a nice spicy red one.Have been wanting to try out the Indonesian Rendang for quite some time now.So decided to go ahead with it.Most recipes on the net called for the use of a ready rendang paste,which despite having looked around was not available here.I often don’t like to replicate a recipie.It’s great fun to actually play around with the ingredients and com up with a concoction of your own.That’s exactly what I did while making this wonderful Meat Rendang.

Now my husband is from Goa and I’ve mastered the use of cooking with coconut in curries be it fish,meat or chicken..So I went along with a coconut curry paste that I would usually make for my Goan curries with of course the addition of the galangal,lemon grass and thai red chillies.

My Own version of Rendang paste:

  • 11/2 cups grated fresh coconut
  • 1 onion (roughly chopped)
  • 3 stalks lemon grass(white parts only,finely chopped)
  • 1 inch pc galangal(finely chopped)
  • 3 small thai red chilies(finely chopped)
  • 3 cloves of garlic(minced)
  • 2 tablespoons fennel seeds
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon light soya sauce

Method:

  1. Heat a pan and dry roast the grated coconut until golden brown.
  2. Remove this and keep it aside.In the same pan
  3. Dry roast the fennel and coriander seeds.Let this cool and then dry grind into a fine powder.
  4. In a small grinder mince together the galangal,garlic thai red chillies and lemon grass.
  5. Now the final step is to put together this paste.Mix all of the above ingredients together along with a half a cup of water and grind into a smooth paste.
  6. Heat a pan with a little oil and fry this paste for about 10 minutes.
  7. Add the fish sauce and the light soya sauce.

For The Meat Rendang:

  • 11/2 kg boneless meat(lamb or beef)
  • 3-4 medium onions(finely chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons ginger-garlic paste
  • Rendang paste
  • 2 tablespoons tamarind pulp
  • 1 tin coconut milk
  • salt to taste
  • Kaffir lime leaves for garnish

Method:

  1. Heat a little oil and fry the onions til brown.
  2. Add the ginger-garlic paste and fry a bit more.
  3. Next  add the meat and fry for about 15 minutes on a high flame.
  4. Now add water enough to cob=ver the meat and let this cook on a slow flame till the meat is tender.This will take at least and hour.
  5. Once the meat is cooked add the rendang paste to it.
  6. Stir in the tamarind pulp.this will impart a nice dark colour to the Meat rendang.
  7. Lastly add the coconut milk and let it simmer till the curry thickens.
  8. Garnish with kaffir lime leaves and serve with some jasmine rice.

A delicious wholesome meat Rendang…Please do try this out.a tip on the rendang paste:You could make this much in advance as it freezes well.

Thanks for reading my post dear friends and cheers to happy times always…

With much love…

Homestyle Meat Curry

I call this curry comfort food.This is really quite simple.Goat meat is generally to make this curry.However you could also  use lamb or beef.

The key to a good curry is of course the quality of the spices used.Ideally one could freshly grind some cumin and coriander.However not always a practical thing to do and so the store-bought one is equally good.

I like to make this basic curry in a large batch as it freezes well.One could always store them in smaller portions in the freezer.This is very handy for most meat,chicken and even a mixed vegetable curry.Accompanined with Rotis,Parathas or even rice…This one is a winner all the way.

The other tip about cooking mutton is that you need to fry the mutton really well in the begining.After which you could use a pressure cooker.I like to cook this meat the slow cooker way.It takes a good 1-11/2 hours.The meat turns out really tender.

Most often a meat curry would be boneless.I like to use some cuts with the bone in along with the boneless ones.This imparts a lovely flavour to the curry.

While frying the onions,make sure you don’t brown them too much.As when the meat is added you would need to fry this for sometime.Browning the onions may cause the mixture to burn and alter the flavour.Best is to brown them lightly.The meat should always be cooked on a high flame for about 10 minutes to seal in the juices.After which you may turn down the flame and fry for a bit more.

A must have in every Indian kitchen.The spice box or more commonly know as the “Masala Dabba”.It contains several small stainless steel containers to keep the spices in.Usually has two lids,one inner to keep the spices fresh and ann outer one as the cover.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 kg Mutton(goat meat)
  • 4 large onions(finely chopped)
  • 2 teaspoons ginger/garlic paste
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 3 teaspoons coarsely ground pepper
  • 11/2 teaspoons chilli powder
  • 11/2 teaspoons cumin powder
  • 2 teaspoons coriander powder
  • 2 tablespoons yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 cup water
  • chopped fresh coriander
  • salt to taste

METHOD:

  1. Wash the meat under running water and pat dry.
  2. Chop the onions finely.
  3. Heat some oil in a large cooking pot and add some cumin seeds.Fry till they crackle.
  4. Then add the finely chopped onions and fry till light brown.
  5. Now add the ginger garlic paste and fry for another couple of minutes.
  6. At this stage the meat can be added.Make sure the heat is turned up high so as to sear the meat and seal in the juices.
  7. Fry for about 5-10 minutes and turn down the heat to medium and keep frying for another 20 minutes.
  8. Take the yogurt and give it a good whisk and add it to the meat.
  9. Keep stirring the meat to prevent it from burning.
  10. Add all the spice powder one at a time.
  11. If the mixture seems too dry and if it is sticking at the bottom add a dash of water.
  12. Now add in the tomato paste and mix well.
  13. Lastly add the water.Make sure the meat is covered under water.
  14. Turn the flame on low and let tis cook for about 1-11/2 hours or untill the meat is really tender.
  15. Lastly add salt to taste and garnish with the fresh coriander leaves.