August 21, 2015

Chicken Spaghetti with Lemon Butter Sauce

"With enough butter anything is good...."
-Julia Child
A short story I have written a while back.... 
Tactile Sensation
Her old aching limbs needed earnestly a fresh air walk. She locked the door and went out to relax in the fresh breeze for a while. She had a small shaded trail guarded by big green trees in her apartment complex, which she felt the only treasure remained in this concrete world. The air was no fresher to inhale, but still the trees worked as the catalysts to strain out the pollution and spread the freshness in the area. Burden of thoughts leaned down her head and her eyes aimlessly followed the path and suddenly got stuck on a feather. A feather with a colour of yellow and black and the length might be a palm long. She knew this bird, but didn’t know its name. She often saw it from her kitchen window, humming in the trees, flying from one branch to the other. Her heart suddenly felt with joy and the 9 year old child jumped out of her and picked up the feather in no time. Her life within a fraction of moment dated 50 years back when she was a desperate feather collector and was awarded the first prize in her school project for her feather collection. She rested her body on a lonely bench on the side of the trail and felt her pounding heart, which was though little bit exhausted with the brisk walk, much more excited about getting a suddenly found treasure. Her wrinkled and trembling fingers touched the soft surface of the feather. The delicate and smoothness of the feather just injected a weird kind of sensation in her whole body and it went straight and hit her heart. She felt a different kind of happiness and relaxation. A different kind of excitement started to run through her blood. She was holding the feather with the utmost care she could give it to. She didn’t want to distort the shape of the feather or any of its barbs. Her aged limbs were trying to gather all the power to give it the full comfort. The touch sensation of the feather infused new life in her senescent body. Again, it took her to the moment when she first held her daughter in her arms. The little bundle of joy made her whole life blessed. Though she was young enough at that time, her hands were trembling too then. Her heart was beating fast with a fear that might be her touch would hurt her little soft baby. Today she was feeling the same first time motherhood experience after so many years just after touching the feather. Her heart swelled with happiness and the joy flooded down her cheeks just alike what she felt that moment when she first had her baby in her arms. The two ages suddenly commixed with a new age and all her burdened soul, her burdened age energised with a new light of power to live life. She touched the feather in her cheek and closed her eyes, she felt like touching her newborn baby. She sensed the same joy and ecstasy. Her charged body headed towards home. Now her hands or limbs were not trembling nor were her limbs aching any more. She went straight to her room and grabbed for a secure place to keep the feather. The mere feather was not a mere feather to her anymore. It’s the source of power to live and sense the precious moments once again. Her excitement could not wait for a moment to share about her treasure and the tactile sensation with her husband, who would be back any moment from his job and her grown up married daughter who calls every day at night.

Now let us move to the recipe:
Ingredients
{Yields 3- 4 adults}
Spaghetti - a bunch that a fist can hold
Boneless Chicken - 200 grm
Garlic - 1 tbspn (chopped)
Butter - 3 tbspn heaped ( or less - See notes)
Lemon Juice - 2 tbspn
Salt, Sugar and black pepper as per taste
Spring onion (finely chopped) - 1/4 cup
Method
1.  Boil the Spaghetti with salt till it's tender. Strain the excess water and reserve. 
2. Heat the butter in non-stick pan. Add garlic and cook till it is light brown. Add lemon juice ad give a quick stir.
3. Add the boneless chicken cut in cubes and saute for a while. Add salt, sugar and pepper as per your taste. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes.
4. Add the spaghetti. Fold nicely with with chicken. Cook for a couple of minutes more and then add the chopped spring onion and serve.
Notes:
I made this dish when I was expecting my second daughter. I was craving for only butter and lemon. I could eat chicken only if it was cooked with lots of butter, drizzle with lemon juice or cream. So when you will make this dish adjust the butter portion with olive oil (If you want to avoid too much butter). But to be honest the taste of the dish actually lies in the amount of butter gets used as Julia Child has said - "With enough butter, anything is good..."
PS. It is a simple adaptation of Lemon Butter sauce inspired from many recipes based on it.

Bon Appétit


August 18, 2015

Kung Pao Chicken

Chili Chicken, Chicken Manchurian, Hakka Noodles, Sweet corn Soup, Hot and Sour soup, and Chicken lolly-pops or Drums of heaven, these were the ultimate dishes which used to comprise the whole Chinese Cuisine for us. My sister and I both die for the Chinese delicacies, make sure as told earlier, for us (To be true, as per our knowledge), mainly Chili Chicken and Hakka Noodles meant all for Chinese cuisine. Whenever we used to visit any Chinese restaurant with our parents, we would order only the items among those. Once for a change we ordered for a new dish called Chicken China Town. We were pretty excited and anxiously waiting to taste a new dish. What we were served, was a dish tasted same like Chicken Manchurian. Only it was covered with an egg poach. Huh, so whether there were 30 odd items listed on the menu of a Chinese restaurant in India, say about 20 years back, the dishes tasted more or less the same. The present scenario has now totally changed. People gained a good knowledge on different cuisine about the varieties and authenticity of the tastes. But at the time of our childhood authentic taste of a cuisine only limited with the high end Restaurants which were not always affordable for us. Spending 250/-INR for a dish was mere a luxury nothing else. So we used to choose our comfort zone where each dish costs 100 to 150/- or less. To be honest once or twice we have visited such places but those Chinese dishes didn't tickle our taste buds for the mildness in the tastes, as we were used to with the dash of Ajinamoto, spicy and full of soy sauce gravy dishes.
It had only opened the whole arena of the versatility of Chinese Cuisine then, when I visited USA. Though not the authentic one, I at least came out from a world where Chilli Chicken and Hakka Noodles were not available. Rather I was introduced with Honey crispy Chicken, Mince Chicken with eggplant, Kung Pao Chicken or Gong Bao Chicken, Hunan Chicken, Wantons, Dumplings, Peking Roasted ducks etc. The variety in taste and flavour in-fixed my mind to What actually Chinese Cuisine is. I was introduced with the varieties of Sauces and spice in the Chinese local stores. The taste of Soy Sauce was so different from the one available in India.  I had never heard about the Sauces like Hoisin sauce or Oyster Sauce. I had never seen so many different varieties of Chili Sauce. The different kind of vinegar and et al. Thankfully now at this age we almost get most the global continental food items in the market. So one can easily delve in luxury to make different types of international dishes at home. Only you have to find out the proper recipe and give a try. Now Kung Pao Chicken is one of the dishes that we love from the traditional Chinese Cuisine. The recipe I have shared is not entirely the authentic one, but a near to it. So enjoy Kung Pao Chicken... 

This Magazine look I created inspired by my very talented friend Chandrima. Check out her blog Not out of the box for delicious recipes and eye catching food photography.
{Recipe partially adapted from HERE}
Ingredients
Marinade
Soy Sauce: 1tbspn
Chinese rice wine or dry sherry – 2 tspn (I used rice vinegar)
Cornflour – ½ tbspn
Boneless Chicken – 250 grams (Cut in to cubes)
Sauce
 Chinese black vinegar or substitute good-quality balsamic vinegar – 1 tspn (I used Balsamic vinegar)
Soy Sauce – 2 tspn
Hoisin sauce – 1 tbspn
Sesame oil – 1 tspn (I didn’t use)
Sugar – 1 tspn
Corn flour – 1 tspn
Ground Sichuan pepper – ½ tspn (See notes - #1)
For the final part:
White oil – 2tbspn + 2 tbspn
Dried red chilies – As per your taste
Spring onion – Finely sliced ¼ cup
Coloured bell pepper  diced -  1 & 1/2 cup
Garlic – finely chopped – 1 tbspn
Fresh ginger – grated 1 tspn
 Dry - roasted Peanuts – ¼ cup
Method:
1. Marinate the chicken with all the ingredients written under Marinade. Fold it nicely so that the cornflour gets mixed evenly.
2. Prepare the sauce, combine all the ingredients written under Sauce. Rest for a while so that the sugar gets dissolve.
3. Heat 2 tbspn oil a wok or a Kadai. Pour the chicken and fry for 4 - 5 minutes on high flame. Take them out and reserve in a bowl.
4.  Add the remaining 2 tbspn oil with the excess oil. Add garlic and let it turn light brown. Add the bell peppers and the chicken. Give a good stir on high flame for  2- 3 minutes. Then add the sauce and the dry red chilies (See notes - #2). Cook for 2 to 3 minutes more then add the peanuts. Cook for couple of minutes more. Then take it off the stove sprinkling the spring onions. Serve hot with rice / fried rice / noodles.
Note:
1. I didn't have ground Sichuan pepper. So what I did, I cut the dry red chilies in strips and added it.
2. Basically the recipe asks for tempering with the Dry Red chilies. I avoided it because of my kid. If your hot tolerance appreciates a good amount of chilies then go for it. Make sure to put your exhaust fan on high and keep your kids away from the kitchen while tempering the chilies.
3. #Tips : Don't cook the chicken for longer time otherwise it will kill the softness of the chicken and will make it hard and rubbery.

August 14, 2015

Mushroom Baby-corn Muffin

You must have read in my earlier post that preparing lunchbox for my 8 year old girl has become a nightmare for me. The reason, what ever or how much tasty dishes I share in her lunch box it will be surely coming back home only half eaten. I started spending sleepless nights - 6 hrs +2 hours stay away from home with such a little food consumption, must be badly affecting the lil one's health. So  in the evenings I started making myself occupied by giving trials with different snack idea. If the lil one approves then 'BINGO'.. Next day that will go in her tiffin box. The other day I made these little savoury muffins that did tickle my princess's taste bud and to my surprise the next day I found her tiffin box empty. Not only she but her friends loved it so much and now I have to send few extra so that my princess and her friends can have a snack party everyday. So here is recipe of Mushroom Baby-corn Muffin:
Ingredients
{Yeilds - 3-4 muffin (medium size)}
Egg - 2
Flour - 1 tbspn
Mushroom & Baby Corn - 1/2 cup chopped
Onion- 1/2 of one small chopped
Cream Cheese - 1 tbspn (Optional - See Notes)
Pizza Cheese - 1 tbspn (See Notes)
Nutmeg powder- a pinch (See Notes)
Tobasco/ Chili Sauce - 3 to 4 drops or as per taste.
Salt, Sugar & Black Pepper Powder - As per taste
Butter - 1 tspn
Method
1. Whisk two eggs and flour, add a pinch of salt and keep aside.
2. Heat a pan . Add butter, let it melt down then add garlic. Saute for a minute.
3. Add chopped onion. Fry them for a couple of minutes.
4. Add the Mushroom and Baby corn. Fry for 2 minutes more. 
5. Add salt, pepper, sugar and cream cheese.
6. Cook then in a low flame until the cream cheese gets melted and well mixed.
7. Sprinkle the nutmeg powder, mix well.
8. Cool the mixture for a while then add it with the egg mixture. Add the Pizza cheese and Tobasco/ chili sauce too.
9. Now take 3- 4 muffin cups. Pour the mixture evenly in each cup.
10. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes at 180 degree C.
11. Serve warm with some dips/ sauce.
Notes:
1. One can mix other vegetables too.
2.  One can add chicken/ bacon or sausages to make it more tasty.
3. To make Nutmeg Powder just take the nutmeg and grate it in a fine grater.
4. I had Britannia Cream cheese at home so used it here. But if it one doesn't have any just increase the cheese portion.
5. Instead of Pizza cheese,  Amul cheese cube can also be used.

July 10, 2015

Hilsa Festival Preview at Buzz, The Gateway, Kolkata

Festival - Hilsa Festival

Venue - Buzz, The Gateway Kolkata
Date - 10th July'15 to 26th July'15

Serving typeÀ la carte

Timing
Lunch : 1230 hrs to 1500 hrs
Dinner : 1930 hrs to 2300 hrs
Pocket Pinch - Meals for two, approx.INR 1500, inclusive of taxes (The price is based on main course items)

My recommendation: Ilish Pulao, Ilish Pithe, Doi 
Ilish & Smoked Hilsa
With the welcoming note of the Monsoon season, our home atmosphere got quite festive when the Man came after the morning shopping chore from the local market and announced with an elated smile:  "Ilish eshe gachhe" (Hilsa has come). The family members like a greedy child with salivated mouth sat down to decide the recipe that would do justice to the Hilsa/ Ilish fish for that day. My FIL with a gleeful joy started reciting a poem. Its a very old bengali poem what my FIL said. He had forgotten the title and the writer's name. But the gist of the poem what I understood is:
An old lady was all set to start her religious tour. Just at the moment she was leaving one of her relatives gave a surprise visit carrying "Jora Ilish" ( Previously people used to buy pair of Ilish). That lady without wasting any time cancelled her tour and sat down to cook Hilsa/ Ilish and enjoyed every bite of it.
 Thus Bengalies are that much carzy when it comes to Hilsa/Ilish. Though it is the national fish of Bangladesh, West Bengal would die for it. This is the one fish which can be cooked in various way. 

Team KFB reached Buzz on an invitation from Taj Gateway to sample the menu of the Hilsa Festival
Special thali for the tasting session.
that has started from today and will continue till 26th July'15. Buzz, the hotel restaurants of The Gateway Hotel has become famous for presenting the "Purbo Bangla/Opar Bangla" or the East Bengal delicacies along with the continental dainties. They never fail to celebrate the core Bengali festivals through their delicious delicacies. And to make sure they bring out the traditional regional dishes mostly from East Bengal and partially of the west Bengal. As the Monsoon knocks the door and the local fish market is flooding with Hilsa, Buzz without wasting any time organised the Hilsa Festival for the Hilsa Lovers with some traditional Bengali dishes from the both sides of Bengal. Thanks to Chef Ashish Roy, who took out his precious time and explained us each and every dish, like how they cooked, why they kept the dish in the menu etc. Now let us take a tour through the dishes that were designed specially for the Hilsa Festival.

What you will get in the Menu:
Starter
{Per dish INR 550 }
Shukno Lanka Peyaj Diye Ilish Bhaja
Block of Ilish fried in churned mustard oil with dried chilies and slices of baby onion
Ilish Pithe
Boneless Ilish stuffed in savoury dough and deep fried. This was the take of the day and highly recommended. Dhaka, Bangladesh specialises and is famous for the sweet and savoury Pithe. Among the the savoury one Ilish Pithe is one of the signature delicacies of Dhaka. 
{Picture Courtesy: Vishal Tupper}
Main Course
{Per dish INR 650 comes along with steamed rice, except Smoked Hilsa}
Narkol Diye Ilisher Paturi (Boneless)
Boneless Hilsa marinated with coconut and the steamed inside banana leaf. Paturi needs no introduction. Check any festive occasion  Paturi is a must added dish to the menu. And if it comes to the Hilsa season the menu goes incomplete without Hilsa/Ilish Paturi.
Ilish Mishti Kumror Jhol
Chef's special peparation cooked in iron griddle with the red pumkin and ground spices.

Ilish Pulao
Hilsa cooked in dum along with the finest hand-picked rice. Slowly cooked in the Hilsa fish stock the dish tasted heavenly. I have tasted Ilish Pulao in many famous food joints, but every where I found a kind of fishy smell dominating the dish. So I kept this dish out of my menu after that. But here to my surprise after tasting it, I didn't get that small rather I had fallen in love with it. So do try it.

Doi Ilish
Classical preparation with hung curd and churned mustard oil. This is another dish which I will highly recommend to try. Goes perfect with the white rice and also with Hilsa/ Ilish Pulao.

{Picture Courtesy: Vishal Tupper}

Smoked Hilsa
A western twist - fillet of boneless hilsa smoked with jasmine rice, honey and a dash of pommery - served with garlic bread. We all had fallen in love at one bite. Soft, creamy melted in mouth hilsa fillet that gives an out most sumptuous experience when you taste it. This dish is specially cooked keeping in mind for the international customers who will get the taste of the queen fish of Bengal with a continental touch up.
Apart from these Shorshebata Ilish (A classical recipe - Hilsa cooked in Mustard based gravy) and Kalojeera Begun diye Tel Jhal (A home style cooked dish with aubergine and tempered with kalonji/ nigella seeds). Hope those readers will enjoy the Hilsa Festival at  Buzz, The Gateway, Kolkata.

Happy Eating....


July 2, 2015

Cherry Banana Bread

Feeling like it has been a decade. Yes I am blogging after almost 7 months. The main reason was my health and the new addition to the family. I was blessed with my second daughter 2 months back and surprisingly both my girls were born on the same date. I didn't have any complications except an uncomfortable back pain which totally restricted me to sit with my laptop. Otherwise I was pretty flexible with long walks and doing all the daily chores. In fact this time I was hardly get any time to think of myself since I had to keep myself fully busy with the elder one. But my only concern was to keep my diet healthy. Only the last month restricted my movement. I had a risk of water breakage which led me to confine myself at home for almost 3 weeks. And then the baby arrived and made our life happy. Lil K wished for a sister and she was gifted a sister on her Birthday. So she was more than happy as we were. She is a doting "DIDI" to her baby sis - very protective and concerned about her each and every movement. And thus we spent 2 months and my darlings were growing together making our each and every day from brighter to brightest.
From this year Lil K's school hours got extended from 4 to 6 hours. This made me tensed, worried and forced me to spend some sleepless nights. The main concern was what to give in her lunch box. Lil K is a picky eater when it comes to her tiffin. She hardly eats anything and I get the lunch box returned almost full. So every day I have to go for a brainstorming session to add something new to her lunch box which can satiate my princess's taste bud. I was always very sceptical using bananas in my bakes. I have never tasted any so was totally unsure about the fact what would be the outcome. But again the passionate baker inside me forced me try this recipe. I have bookmarked it long back. This time I thought of executing it crossing my fingers if by any chance my luck favours. And to my surprise not only I but Lil K and all the family members appreciated a lot. It happily adorned the lunchbox and the box came home empty.  So here is the recipe Cherry Banana Bread..
{Note: I was pretty surprised why a recipe that could be easily justified as a cake, named after a bread. Then a few read made me understand that since were baking it in a bread loaf pan, it was therefore considered as a bread, nothing else. }
{Recipe adapted from HERE}
Ingredients
Ripe bananas – 2 -3 medium size (approx 1 cup mashed)
Butter – 4 tbs (room temperature)
Hung Curd – ¼ cup
Brown sugar – ¾ cup
Egg - 1
Vanilla essence- 1 tsp

Flour - 1 cup
Baking soda – 1tsp
Baking powder – ½ tsp
Salt – ½ tsp

Cherry – 10-12
Flour – 2 tbs
Chocolate chips – ½ cup
Chopped Cashew nuts – ¼ cup
Method
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees centigrade for 7-8 minutes.
  2.  Peel and mash the bananas.
  3. In a mixing bowl pour the sugar. Add the bananas and mix well unless the sugar blends nicely. Add the egg and mix. 
  4. Then slowly pour the hung curd and add the vanilla essence. Mix until well combined.
  5. In a separate container combine nicely the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Do not over mix.
  6. Slowly add the flour mixture to the banana mixture and mix well but do not over mix.
  7. Add the chocolate chips and the cashews nuts.
  8. Seed and slice the cherries and fold them in 2 tbs flour and add them gently to the mixture. Again do not over mix.  .
  9. Grease and flour a 9'x 5' loaf pan and then pour the mixture in it.
  10. bake it for for 50 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool it completely and then serve. It tastes better when it is served chill.                                                              
Note:
1. After it gets cool one can keep the bread outside for a day, depending on the temperature. Otherwise suggested to refrigerate and consumed within 3-4 days.
2. It tastes better when it is served chill.

December 24, 2014

Christmas delicacy: Chocolate Bavarian cast Blueberry topped Cheese Cake

I am totally slogging with my blogging career. Career Passion I must say that once used give me the solace in life. I am not getting my mojo back to sit and go through this thoughtful  process where I can pour down my heart out and share the experiences of my life with my readers. It is very hard to get back in  a creative world after a long  gap or break. Everyday I try to take out some time out for my blog, but the hectic schedule of life  makes my brain and mind totally idle to run the intellectual  thought process to work. Anyways after a long time I came for a vacation to a serene place where the chilling  winter  season is kissing the nature all around me. I am sitting under the warm sunlight and roasting my body to get all the warmth to make the chilling cold sooth out the limbs. Lovely colourful vibrant flowers are full bloomed all around me and singing a song of romance that I missed for so many years. The romance with nature that was once my young hood fascination and puff, without whom I used to see my future totally doomed and dead. But life keeps on moving and I am still alive and quite happy with the city life, may be because I hardly get time to think about myself, some time out from the hectic lifestyle. 
Anyways let us not spoil this festive season mood with this mundane talks. Let us cheer to welcome Santa, wish all Merry Christmas and a prosperous Happy New year. At the same time I am also celebrating my 200th posts. And what is the better way to welcome it with some delicious and scrumptious heavenly delicacy!! Enjoy  the  Chocolate Bavarian cast Blueberry topped Cheese Cake which is no doubt  going to be a winner above all dishes.
Ingrdients
Cheese Cake
Cream Cheese: 1 packet (I used Philadelphia -room temperature )
Egg: 2 (room temperature )
Powdered Sugar: 1 cup
Vanilla Essence: 1 tsp
Oreo Biscuit:  Crushed 1 cup
Butter: 1tbsp (Melted)

Blue Berry preserve: 1 cup

Bavarian Cream:
Milk- 1/4 cup
Chocolate: 1 cup
Heavy Cream: 1 cup (Amul cream will also do the tetra pack one)
Gelatin: 1tbsp
Egg yolk- 2

Bottom loose Cake tins/ Spring foam pans:
5" - 1
6" - 1
 Method:
 1. Beat the cream cheese until its soft. Add sugar beat nicely.
  1. Add the egg one at time. Blend nicely. Add Vanilla essence.
  2. Pre heat the oven at 160 degree Celsius.
  3. Mix the oreo and butter nicely and then line on the 5" loose bottomed cake tin. Bake for 3-4 minutes.
  4. Pour the mixture in the oreo crust and bake for 30-40 mnts at 150 degree C or till a tooth pick pricked in the cake comes out clean.
  5. Take it out and leave it to cool down.
  6. Pour the Blue Berry preserve on the top. Put in the refrigerator for at list 1-2 hours.
  7. Slowly take the cake out from the cake tin and  put it very carefully in the 6 " pan.

Chocolate Bavarian Cream:
  1. Add gelatin to the milk and set aside.
  2. Heat the cream and melt the chocolate in it. Remove from the heat and whisk the egg yolks in it until it blends in a smooth texture. Put it again on heat and keep on whisking continuously so that the egg should not curdled up or leaves any lumps. Cook it for 3-4 mnts then remove from the heat.
  3. Add the gelatin in the mixture whisk it and then pour it on the top of the cheese cake.  Refrigerate overnight for better result. Then cut and serve and enjoy the festive season.

Wish you all Merry Christmas and a prosperous Happy New year...
This is off to the KFB Christmas Spl Event:

November 16, 2014

Pan Roasted Soy Honey Glazed Chicken


Resuming blogging almost after three months. When you are on a break then it becomes a tedious job to get back on track. My lazy soul needed a lot of boost ups from my friends and family and then here is the result. When you are surrounded by some good souls how your life can be unhappy. They are like the fairies of one's life who can drive away all the glumness away from you. Yes I am one of the blessed souls in this earth who by any chance got these fairies around her. 
There are so many things to share with you all - the experiences of the last three months. Ah, I need few serene hours to nurture the thoughts in my mind and then to pour the heart out here. Yes I truly missed blogging in the past few months. But one the reasons is, I was pretty confused with my blogging carrier too. I will come with my thought in my next to next post till then enjoy the dish that I made yesterday night. And I swear it came out so tasty. I highly recommend all of you to please give it a try and then Oh yes don't forget to give me your feedback.
Ingredients:
Chicken Leg Full- 5 pcs
Dark Soy Sauce- 1/2 cup
Honey - 1/4 cup
Lemon Juice - 3 tbsp
Juice from Garlic & Ginger paste - 3 tbspn
Salt as per taste

Oil - 2 tbspn
Method-

  1. Slit the flesh of the  Chicken legs so that the juice can go inside.
  2. Marinade for at least 3-4 hrs with everything listed under the ingredient section.
  3. Take a non-stick pan. Heat the oil.
  4. Now strain out the chicken pieces from the marinated sauce and put it in a Plate. Please reserve the sauce.
  5. I roasted three pieces first and then the other two in the next batch. So put three Chicken leg pieces in the pan, put a lid and cook in low flame for at least 10+10 minutes both side.  In between keep on adding the sauce in a very small amount.
  6. When the chicken is almost cooked add more than half of the sauce in the pan and cook in high flame unless the sauce thickens and the both sides of the chicken gets coated nicely with the dark soy look.
  7.  Take it out form the pan and plate it with desired assortments. Do the same thing with the second batch of the chicken.

August 8, 2014

Chicken Hotdog Stuffed Buns

  The morning of Kolkata is totally different as it looks in  the busy hours.  It is beautiful, serene and romantic. Less number of vehicles on the road and less crowded. Almost no honking - the morning always weaves a different story. My daily route to romance with the morning is passing by  the Rabindra Sarobar, Southern Avenue, Gol  Park then the Gariahaat Crossing to Kashba. The morning fresh breeze brushes my hair, kisses my face with a tender touch.  I keep on inhaling the fresh breath to store it for the whole day as much as I can before another side of Kolkata faces off pretty fast soon. Surprisingly I get to hear the birds chirping when I pass through the grovy and bushy lanes of Southern Avenue. I see all the young & old  on the road taking the pleasure of a morning walk. Some relaxing on a "Cutting Chai" or sipping hot tea in a Khuri ( small container made out of clay especially for serving tea in Bengal) or some drinking coconut water.  You will see the JhaNkawala Shabjiwala/ Folwala (The vendors who sell fruits/vegetables in a basket) busy in selling their stuffs to the morning passersby and with a hope in their eyes to gain profit as much as they can for the day.  Some devotees will be seen busy in enchanting the Mantras in front of Lake Kalibari. Whoever crosses through the road they will surely slow down their cars to show their respect and faith for god in front of the Temple.  A small and quick salutation will be seen touching the forehead then the chest and again regaining the speed to race with the traffic. I love this lane though I hate so many cars are parked blocking a lane. But here I get to see different kinds of busy morning and people where people are busy in relaxation. They are enjoying their morning walks or chatting with their everyday walking partners or laughing aloud on some jokes.  My car passes by and I keep on watching and storing all the stories of the different Kolkata lanes and the different scenarios in the weekdays. The Gariahat crossing tells a different story. It was then calm and quite. Only the cars and a handful of passersby will be seen. All the stores are deep in their somberness. A smile spreads soon after I cross this road. I smile at the tranquility of this place which in a few hours will be turning in to one of the craziest roads where it will be hard to drive through the road. All the passersby will come on road to either cross the road or to catch a bus/taxi/auto. The honking sounds from each and every vehicle will make your life like a hell. The traffic guards will be trying their best to make the traffic run smooth. But there will be no change. It will remain as busy and unorganized as it is. And here I should blame the people who are always prone to dissuade to make the city beautiful. Sigh...
The other day we the parents dropped lil K at her school and enjoying the drive way back home recollecting all the old new stories of our life. The weather was cloudy and the cool breeze made it more romantic to float down in a realm of romanticism. We crossed the ever enchanting Rabindra Sarobar Bridge and heading towards the Prince Anwar Shah Crossing. All of a sudden the Hubby Man hold his break and slowed down the car. A mother cyclist was carrying her little daughter on the back carrier of the cycle, crossing this speedy traffic prone road reluctantly. She crossed our car and the Hubby Man was just about to gear up the speed when we heard a bloodcurdling screeching sound of someone's car who pressed the emergency break and we saw the Mother and the child with a loud shout fell from the cycle. The Driver of that car and the Hubby Man stopped the car and rushed to them. I was sitting standstill and trying to understand what exactly happened in these last few seconds.  I got down from the car and went to the spot. By God's grace both the mother and the kid were fine. It was the driver of the car who had actually saved them. I saw my husband scolding that lady a lot for her recklessness. Frankly speaking I was feeling like slapping the lady for how irresponsible she could be. The way, she was crossing the road as if it was a playground totally ignoring the speedy moving cars.  Being a mother it is the first responsibility to protect your child and to teach all the rules & regulations of life. If we keep on ignoring them then in long run why to blame the kid. And moreover if something would have happened to them, everybody would blame the driver and might be beaten him to death, where the truth was the driver was actually the saviour. With a pounding heart all of us started moving to each other's destination.  The sweet morning within a fraction of second changed in to bitterness. And for few days I was not able to bear the fact of the recklessness of the mother and dreading the fact what worst could have happened. We always blame to reckless driving but every day I travel to and fro 80 kms and most of the time it catches my notice that the passersby are most of the time at fault.

Now let us move to today's recipe: Chicken Hotdog Stuffed Buns. It is very filling and healthy too. For the filling you can go wild with anything after your mind.

Ingredients:
(Yields 4-5 buns)
For the buns:
Flour - 1 cup
Instant yeast-  A bit less than 1 tspn
Warm Milk - 1/2 - 3/4 cup (More or less)
Olive oil - 2 table spoon
Salt - 1/4 tspn
Sugar - 1 tspn
Butter - 1 -2 tbspn
Sesame Seeds - 1 tbspn

For the Stuffing:
Chicken Hotdog - 2-3
Slices Onion - 1 small
Coloured bell pepper sliced - 1/2 cup
Chopped garlic - 2 tspn
Ginger paste - 1/2 tspn
Tomato Sauce - 1 tbspn
Worcestershire sauce - 1 tspn
Grated cheese - 1/2 cup (Optional)
Oil- 1 tbspn
Salt and Sugar ad per taste
Method:
Make the stuffing: 
Heat oil in the pan. Add the garlic and fry. Add the onion saute for a while then add all the other ingrediants apart from the cheese. Fry for few minutes on flame and then take off  from the stove. Make sure it is dry.
Make the buns:

  1. Add all the dry ingredients with the flour. Mix well. Add warm milk slowly at a time and keep on needing. Don't pour all the milk at one time. One has to make a semi soft dough so add milk as per requirement.
  2. Keep on kneading at least for 10 minutes. Then take a big bowl and cover the dough with a damp cloth or cling fling  and let  rise for 1 hour. After one hour again knead back the dough for 3-4 minutes and then again keep it for 40-45 minutes. Now take the dough and make 4-5 balls (Or more or less) out of it. Make sure the balls should have enough size to be stuffed.
  3. Roll each ball in a small disc and then put the stuffing and cheese in it. And then join  together the edges and seal nicely and roll in to a smooth ball again. You can add a bit oil on your palm to avoid the stickiness. Make a nicely shaped buns rolling in between the palms.
  4. Pre- heat the oven at 200 C for 6-7 minutes.
  5. Take a baking tray. Grease it and put the buns. Brush the buns with melted butter and top with some sesame seeds on each bun.
  6. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the buns gets a nice brown tinge and the top is crispy enough.  Take it out and enjoy.
Note:
1. You can use egg white too to brush the top of the buns to get a nice brown top while baking.
2. For the stuffing anything can be added. You can go for a veg or a non- veg too.

Photography Notes::
I clicked it on Program mode. The ISO was 1600. I shot it at night time. It was clicked in normal Tube Light that we had in every house. The light was coming from far left and I had kept the right side dark. From my experience - dark background for night shoots suits best.