Monthly Archives: December 2012

Cornish Pasties

 

Cornish Pasty, is a baked pastry, a traditional variety of which is particularly associated with Cornwall, the western- and southernmost county in England.  It is made by placing uncooked filling of meat and vegetables, on one half of a flat shortcrust pastry circle, folding the pastry in half to wrap the filling in a semicircle and crimping the curved edge to form a seal before baking.  The traditional Cornish Pastry is filled with beef, diced potatoes, turnip and onion, seasoned with salt and pepper.

Today there are many different varieties of different fillings.  You will find Cornish Pasty stands in Malls and Train Stations in London.  People will grab a pasty, that comes in a brown paper bag and convinient to eat, and eat it on the go.

Cornish Pasty was our meal at least a couple of times a week, (when we lived in England) it came with mashed potatoes and gravy.

 food pictures downloaded april 25-12 007

Ingredients

Pastry

  • 1            lb white flour
  • 1/2         lb butter
  • 4            tbsp cold water

Filling

  • 1            lb ground beef
  • 1/2         tsp crushed garlic
  • 1/2         tsp crushed ginger
  • 1            tsp salt
  • 1            tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2            tbsp HP sauce
  • 1            medium onion
  • 1            medium potato
  • 1            carrot
  • 1            egg

Instructions

Filling

  1. In a medium saucepan add the meat, ginger and  garlic, and cook the meat stirring and breaking the meat till the liquid has evaporated and the meat cooked.
  2. Add salt, black pepper and HP sauce.
  3. Peel and grate the onion, potato and the carrot and add this to the meat.
  4. Let it cool completely.

Pastry

  1. Put the flour in a medium size bowl.
  2. Cut butter into small pieces and rub in the flour.
  3. Add water and mix with a fork.
  4. Form the pastry into a ball with your finger tips.
  5. Lightly flour the rolling pin and board.
  6. Turn out the pastry onto the board, and with light, quick, forward strokes roll out to a 1/4 inch thickness.
  7. Cut the pastry to the required size.  ( I have used a 4 inch round cookie cutter).  Form the scraps into a ball and roll out, and cut out more rounds.
  8. Brush half-way round the rim of each round of pastry.
  9. Put a spoonful of filling in the centre of the pastry.
  10. Bring the edges of the pastry up together in the centre over the filling, and press  gently together all round to seal.
  11. Beat the egg with 1 tbsp water and brush all over the top.
  12. Bake in a  preheated  400 degree oven for 30 minutes till the pastry is a light brown color
  13. Serve hot or cold.

Cornish pasties can be served as an appetizer(small size) or cut the rounds to 6 inch and serve as an entre with a salad.

In England it is served with mashed potato peas and gravy on it.

Crunch Drops

Makes 5 dozens

 Crunch cookies Dec 2012 009

Ingredients

  • 2          cups all purpose flour
  • 1          tsp baking soda
  • 1/2       tsp salt
  • 1          cup soft butter
  • 1          cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1/2       cup granulated sugar
  • 2          eggs
  • 1          tsp vanilla extract
  • 2         cups quick cooking oats
  • 4          oz flaked coconut

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Lightly grease cookie sheets.
  2. In a bowl put flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
  3. In large bowl of electric mixer, at medium speed, beat butter, sugars, eggs and vanilla until light and fluffy.
  4. At low speed, beat in flour mixture until well combined.
  5. Stir in oats and coconut until well blended, to make a stiff dough.
  6. Drop by slightly rounded teaspoonfuls, 2 inche apart, onto prepared cookies sheets.
  7. Bake 12 – 15 minute.  Remove to wire rack; cool.

Christmas Cookies

For  Christmas I have made the following Cookies:-
On the platter starting at the top left,
Kifli – is a Hungarian  Cookie.  It is a soft flaky pastry around a sweet walnut filling.
Shortbreads – can not have Christmas without Shortbreads.
Cuccidati – theses are Sicilian cookies and they have a spicy fig-and-nut filling enclosed in a cookie crust and finished with candy sprinkles.
Crunch Drops
Linzer Cookies-This is a crisp nut cookie, sandwiched together with raspberry filling..

food pictures Dec 2012 002

 food pictures Dec 2012 010

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can make a basket with all the cookies you have (I have bagged the cookies
and then made a basket) and give it as a gift or you can arrange it on a platter to serve to your guests.

Cookie Basket 2Dec 2012 006

 

 

 

 

 

Chicken and Beetroot Fillo Nests

I found this recipe  in Australian Women Weekly.

saree picture 011

Makes 30

  • 3            sheets filo pastry
  • 1            oz butter
  • 1            cup finely chopped cooked chicken
  • 1/4         cup sour cream
  • 1/4         tsp ginger
  • 1/4         tsp garlic
  • 1/2         tsp salt
  • 1/2         tsp crushed  black pepper
  •                coriander leaves

Beetroot Relish

  • 1              small beetroot uncooked
  • 1              small onion, finely chopped
  • 1              tbsp caster sugar
  • 1/4          tsp grated lemon rind
  • 1              tsp lemon juice
  • 1/4          cup white vinegar
  • 1/4          tsp black pepper
  • pinch     chili powder

Instructions

  1. Lightly grease mini muffin pans.
  2. Layer pastry sheets together, brushing each sheet lightly with butter.
  3. Cut into 2 inch squares.  Gently press squares into prepared pans.
  4. Bake in moderately hot oven 350  degrees for  5 minutes before turning onto wire rack to cool.
  5. Combine chicken, sour cream, ginger, garlic, salt and black pepper in a bowl.
  6. Spoon a level teaspoon of mixture into each pastry case.

Just before serving,

  1. Spoon beetroot relish into nests, top with coriander leaves.

Beetroot Relish:

  1. Shred the  beetroot or cut it into thin strips.
  2. Combine beetroot, onion, sugar, lemon  rind,  juice, vinegar,  black pepper and chili powder in a pan and bring to a boil, simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes or until the liquid evaporates.
  • Pastry cases can be made a day ahead.
  • Relish can be made 2 weeks ahead.
  • Store:  Pastry cases in airtight container.
  • Relish, covered, in refrigerator.

Lemon Grass and Chili Beef Parcels

 

saree picture 013

Makes 24

Ingredients

  • 2             tbsp butter
  • 1             lb beef fillet, chopped
  • 2             tbsp finely chopped fresh lemon grass
  • 2             small fresh red chilies, finely chopped
  • 1             tsp green masala
  • 4             green shallots, chopped
  • 1/2          tsp salt
  • 2             tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/4          cup water
  • 12           large cabbage leaves

Instructions

  1. Heat butter in a pan, add beef, cook, stirring, until well browned.
  2. In a blender blend lemon grass, red chili and green masala.  Add this to the meat.
  3. Add chopped shallot, salt, tomato paste and water and cook till the meat is tender and the water has evaporated.
  4. Cool the mix to room temperature.
  5. Trim thick stalks from cabbage leaves; cut leaves in half.  Steam leave until wilted, drain on absorbent paper.
  6. Spoon beef mixture onto narrow end of each leaf half, fold sides in, roll up, secure with tooth picks.
  7. Cover, refrigerate until cold.

Cuccidati

These Sicilian treats have a spiced fig-and-nut filling enclosed in a cookie crust and finished with candy sprinkles.

This recipe is from Canadian Living Special Issue Fall 2008.

Makes about 48 cookies.

Ingredients

  • 2             cups all purpose flour
  • 1/3          cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4          tsp baking powder
  • 1/2          tsp salt
  • 1/2          cup cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 2             eggs, beaten

Filling:

  • 2             cups stemmed chopped dried fig
  • 1/2          cup raisin
  • 1/3          cup candied orange peel
  • 1/3          slivered blanched almonds
  • 1/3          cup dark rum or orange juice
  • 1             tsp finely grated lemon rind
  • 1/2          tsp each cinnamon
  • 1/2          tsp ground cloves

Icing:

  • 1 1/2        cups icing sugar
  • 3              tbsp milk
  • 1/2           tsp vanilla
  • 1              tbsp candy nonpareils or sprinkle

Instructions

  1. In a food processor, pulse together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  2. Add butter; pulse until in fine crumbs.
  3. Add eggs; pulse just until dough comes together.
  4. Divide dough into quarters; flatten into discs.
  5. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Filling:

  1. In food processor , finely chop together figs, raisins, orange peel, almonds, rum, lemon rind, cinnamon and cloves.  Set aside.
  2. On a lightly floured surface, roll out each piece of dough into 14- x 3- inch rectangle.  Place one-quarter of the filling in 1-inch strip lengthwise down centre of the dough.
  3. Bring sides of dough up over filling and pinch edges together to seal; gently roll into log.
  4. Place log, seam side down, on cutting board; cut diagonally into 1-inch thick slices.
  5. Bake on parchment paper-lined baking sheets in top and bottom thirds of 350 degrees oven, switching and rotating pans halfway through, until lightly golden, about 20 minutes.
  6. Remove on racks and let cool completely.

Cooies can be frozen in an airtight container for 2 weeks.

Icing:

  1. In a bowl, combine icing sugar, milk and vanilla.  Spread scant 1/2 tsp over each cookie; top with a few sprinkle. 
  2. Let stand on racks until icing is set, about 1 hour.

Iced cookies can be stored  layered between waxed paper in airtight container for up to a week.

92 Calories per cookie

Kifli

Kifli is a Hungarian cookie.  You may find a few different recipes for it.  These melt in your mouth morsels feature soft flaky pastry around a sweet walnut filling.

Makes 60 cookies

Kifli

Ingredients

  • 2             cups  all-purpose flour
  • 1             tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1             tsp baking powder
  • 1/4          tsp salt
  • 1             cup cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1/2          cup sour cream
  • 2             egg yolks
  • 1             tbsp icing sugar

Filling:

  • 1               cup finely ground walnuts
  • 1/3            cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2            tsp finely grated lemon rind
  • 2               tsp lemon juice
  • 1               tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2            vanilla essence
  • 1               egg white

Instructions

  1. In a bowl whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  2. With a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in butter until in coarse crumbs.
  3. Whisk sour cream with egg yolks; stir into flour mixture just until dough comes together.
  4. Divide dough in half; flatten into discs.
  5. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

or

If using a food processor:

  • In the bowl add flour, sugar, baking powder and salt and butter and pulse a couple of minutes until the mix is like crumbs.
  • Add the sour cream and egg yolk and pulse till the dough comes together.

Filling:

  1. In a bowl, mix walnuts, sugar, lemon rind and juice, cinnamon and vanilla.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk egg white until stiff peaks form; fold into filling.
  3. On lightly floured surface roll out each piece of dough into 12 x 10 inch (30 x 25 cm) rectangle.  Cut each into thirty 2-inch (5 cm) squares.
  4. Place 1/2 tsp filling in the centre of each square.  Starting at corner, roll cookies to opposite corner.  tucking point under.  Bend to make crescent shape.
  5. Bake on parchment paper-lined baking sheets in top and bottom thirds of 400 degree oven, rotating and switching pans halfway through, until golden, about 15 minutes.  Let cool on pans on rack for 5 minutes.  Remove to racks; let cool.
  6. Dust with sugar.

(Make ahead and store in airtight container for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 2 weeks).

Linzer Cookies

This is a crisp nut cookie, sandwiched together with raspberry filling..  I found this recipe in Womans Day Magazine in late seventies.

 saree picture 003

Makes 4 dozens

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2                  cups butter, softened
  • 1                        cup sugar
  • 1                        egg
  • 1                        egg yolk
  • 1                        tsp grated lemon rind
  • 1/2                     tsp vanilla essence
  • 3 1/3                  cups finely ground hazelnuts or
  •                           almonds
  • 3 1/3                  cups cake flour or all purpose flour
  • 1                        tsp baking power
  • 1 1/4                  tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1                        jar (12 oz) raspberry jam.
  • 1                        cup icing sugar

Instructions

  1. Beat butter and sugar in a large bowl with electric mixer until light and fluffy; beat in egg, egg yolk, lemon rind and vanilla; stir in nuts.
  2. Stir in flour, baking powder and cinnamon, blending well to make a stiff dough; wrap in wax paper; chill several hours, or overnight.
  3. Cut dough in half(refrigerate other half).  Roll out dough between sheets of wax paper to slightly less  than 1/4 inch thickness.  Remove top sheet of wax paper.
  4. With a 2 inch round cookie cutter, cut out as many circles from the dough as you can.  Carefully remove circles from bottom sheet of wax paper; place cookies on ungreased cookie sheets .
  5. Repeat with other half of the dough, cutting out an  equal number of 2 inch circles as from the first batch.  Place on ungreased cookie sheets.  With a 3/4 in cookie cutter, cut out centre of each of the second batch of cookies.  Use any scraps of dough for second rolling.  Roll scraps of dough out for second rolling.  Cut out equal number of solids circles and circles with open centers.  (You can also use a Linzer Cookie Cutter).
  6. Bake in a moderate oven (350 degrees) for 12 min, or until edges are golden brown.
  7. Remove cookie sheets from the oven.  Let it cool.
  8. Spread each of the solid cookie completely with a thin layer of raspberry jam.   Top each with a cut-out cookie; press gently to make a sandwich.
  9. Place on a wire rack.  Sprinkle tops of cookies with icing sugar.
  10. Spoon dab of preserve in opening of each cookie, let preserve set slightly.  (Optional)

Mehndi(Henna)Night

Today I am having a Mehndi party. I have invited a  few of my friends. We will  have dinner and apply Mehndi.

 

Mehndi is the application of henna as a temporary form of skin decoration in Asia and Middle East.

Mehndi decorations became fashionable in the West in the late 1990s, where they are sometimes called henna tattoos. Henna is typically applied during special occasions like weddings and Muslim festivals such as Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Adha  as well as in Hindu festivals like Karva Chauth, Diwali, Bhaidoj and Teej.   Henna was originally used as a form of decoration mainly for brides and her friends.

In the modern age, usually people buy readymade Henna cones, which are ready to use and make painting easy. However, in rural areas in India, women grind fresh henna leaves on grinding stones with added oil, which though not as refined as professionally prepared henna cones, brings much darker colors.

For dinner I will serve:-

Chicken and Beetroot                                Lemon Grass and Chilli               
Nests                                                          Beef Parcels

saree picture 011saree picture 013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapatti                                                  Shirkhand                     

Mani

Shirkhand          

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Undhiyo           
                 

undhiyo                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Paratha   

Square Paratha 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rice and Persian Chicken 

Persian Chicken 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Kulfi                     

Kulfi Linzer Cookie                                                                                                                                                                             

Linzer Cookies