Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

I have seen all these recipes that uses cauliflower for sauce or crust and have always wanted to try it. So when thinking about tonight’s dinner… I wanted some mac and cheese and lo behold I find a Cauliflower Mac and Cheese!!! The recipe is from Honey and Brie (linked below). Had to try!

CMnC6

Cauliflower Macaroni and Cheese

(Recipe from honeyandbrie.blogspot.com)

CMnC

Cauliflower-Cheese Sauce

Ingredients:

2 cups cauliflower florets
1 cup water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup chopped white onions
1 clove garlic, minced
3/4 cup half and half (or milk of choice) (I used 2 % milk)
1/2-1 teaspoon salt (depending on your taste)
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 1/2 cups  you choice of pasta
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:

1. In a small pot add cauliflower and 1 cup water, and steam cauliflower until tender. Drain and add cauliflower to blender.

2. Meanwhile, saute onions and olive oil on low heat. Once onions become translucent add minced garlic and saute for one more minute.

3. Add onions and garlic to blender with cauliflower as well as half and half. Puree cauliflower mixture adding water as needed until mixture is smooth, then pour back into a pot on low heat.

4. Mix the two cups of cheese together in a bowl and add half of the cheeses, salt, and pepper and whisk until smooth.

5. Boil pasta as directed and drain once pasta is al dente, about 6-9 minutes. Add pasta to cheese mixture, mixing well, and pour into an 8 x 8 baking dish. Sprinkle remaining cup of cheese on top (I also added some Italian Bread Crumbs) and bake on 400 degrees until cheese starts to bubble and turn golden brown, about 10-15 minutes.

6. Serve with crispy chopped bacon for an extra kick. —-I do not eat bacon…so I did not add this. SERVE HOT!

I love cauliflower…. so this was perfect dish for me…. there is a slight cauliflower taste…. but there is delicious creaminess without any flour base white sauce or sour cream or huge amount of cheese. I also added some red pepper flakes to add a little heat. I thoroughly enjoyed it as my dinner, have a big container for lunch and still have some left. This could be a perfect side dish….or an entree…. like I ate ;)

CMnC2

Unfortunately I left my camera at work so had to use my cell phone to take pictures…. hence a little dark and pixelated!!! But I promise you it taste so much better than my pictures look :D

Definitely worth the try…. so do try and let me know what you think.

Until next time,

Happy eating,

Cheers =)

 

Butter Paneer Masala- Dhaba Style

Paneer is a soft cheese that most Indians like and is found in all Indian restaurants. It is vegetarian’s protein…similar to tofu. This recipe that I am sharing today is from Cooking Shooking It is a blog/website that belongs to a young budding chef…. he makes some delicious recipes….. I have tried one before and this is 2nd dish that I tried today and My husband and I both loved it.

BPMDS

My main reason of trying this recipe… “Dhaba Style” … if you have lived in India or visited…. Dhaba’s are street side mom and pop restaurants that cook food with tonnes of butter and most of the times its family recipes. I have grown up on it and wouldn’t miss a beat to try and cook like them. Second the addition of “Papad”…. I have never heard of mixing papad in vegetable….so I had to give it a shot.

This recipe is definitely a good mix of Indian spice, heat and creaminess…. this young chef knows his way around the kitchen. He also has a You Tube channel where he show cases his recipes. You can find video to make this recipe HERE .

Since it was just me and my husband eating…. I halved this recipe ….after doing so too it made enough for 3 people to eat (according to portions we eat). Also I totally downsized the “Fat” amounts here.

BUTTER PANEER MASALA- DHABA STYLE

(Makes for 5-6 people) (from Cooking Shooking)

Ingredients
  • Tomatoes – 8
  • Paneer – 200 gm
  • Coriander – 2 Tbsp {Chopped}
  • Onions – 3
  • Butter – 3 Tbsp (I used 1 tbsp)
  • Black Cardamom – 2
  • Green Cardamom – 4
  • Bay Leaf – 2
  • Cumin Seeds – 1 Tsp
  • Dry Red Chili – 2
  • Oil – 2 Tbsp (I used 1 tbsp)
  • Ginger Garlic Paste – 1½ Tb
  • Salt – To Taste
  • Kashmiri Red Chili Powder – 2 Tbsp (I did not have this so I just used some a tsp of red chilli powder)
  • Cumin Powder – 1 Tsp
  • Garam Masala – 1 Tsp
  • Kasoori Methi – 1 Tsp
  • Cream – 3 Tbsp (I used 2 tbsp…. I could have done with just 1)
  • Green Chili – 2 (Slit)
  • Papad – 1 Small
Instructions
  1. Puree the tomatoes and mince the onions. In a pan, add the oil. Once hot, add the cumin seeds, dried red chilies, bay leaf, and open the cardamoms and add them and then add add ginger garlic paste as well. Let them sizzle.
  2. Add the butter, once it melts well add the minced onions and salt. Stir well and cook in medium flame until light golden. Then add in the tomato pulp. Stir and as it gets a roaring boil cover and cook for about 15 minutes or until it leaves the sides checking every 2-3 minutes to prevent burning.
  3. Add the cumin powder, red chili powder, garam masala and kasoori methi. Crush the kasoori methi in between your hands before adding.
  4. While the spices cook for a minute roast a papad, crush and keep aside.
  5. And, as the spices are cooked add the water depends. I added about 1 cup in total. Followed by chopped coriander and the cubed paneer and cream. Stir well and cook for about 5 minutes.
  6. Add the slit chilies and the papad. After adding the papad I added a 1/4 cup of water as we like a little gravy.
  7. Enjoy it hot!

BPMDS1

It was scrumptious and is all gone already! While the ingredient list looks big….don’t let it scare you….this is one easy recipe that cooks quick, tastes yum and you will want to make it over and over!!

I am not related to this young chef, nor am I getting economic benefits for promoting him… I just feel young talents like him need to be motivated and supported! So do try this recipe and visit this young chef’s blog and You Tube Channel (Both linked above).

Until next time,

Happy Cooking,

Cheers =)

Chocolate Mousse

Thanksgiving is all about pumpkin pie…. but when you aren’t fan of pumpkin pie and neither are your friends…. you end up making some other dessert for Thanksgiving dinner….That’s what I did….I decided to make some dessert other than pumpkin pie…. and made this Chocolate Mousse.

CM1

Yes another one of those single serve cup desserts (I love this style of serving dessert) So I found this video on You Tube. A simple, quick and easy recipe… which used Gelatin to make these. I have never worked with Gelatin… but gave it a shot this time…. They turned out delicious…. there is no sugar in the chocolate part of the mousse … some in the whipped topping on top and the oreo layer at the bottom! The original video I got the recipe from can be found HERE.

CM3

CHOCOLATE MOUSSE

Makes 7-8 servings.

(Original Recipe from Rajshri Foods)

1-1/4 cup semi sweet chocolate morsels (I used Ghiradelli brand) + 2 oz unsweetened chocolate (I used Baker’s Baking Bar for this)

2 cup of heavy whipping cream. (1 for chocolate and 1 cup for whipping)

1-1/2 tsp gelatin powder soaked in 4 tbsp of water for 5 mins.

1 tsp vanilla essence

8 oreo cookies (crushed)

3 tbsp melted butter

Whipped cream and oreo cookies for garnish.

Procedure:

1. Crush the oreo cookies and mix with melted butter. Layer in cups and put the cups in fridge for the cookies to set.

2. Melt the chocolate and 1 cup cream in a microwave safe bowl. I cooked it in 30 seconds interval. Stir between each cooking. Once its smooth, let it cool for 5-10 mins. Add the vanilla essence and soaked gelatin and mix well again.

3. Meanwhile whip up 1 cup heavy cream and make homemade whipped cream. Alternatively you could use store bought whipped cream (cool whip). 1 cup heavy cream will make approx 2 cups of whipped cream. Fold in the cream with the chocolate mixture. Remember to fold in and not stir crazy!

4. Pour the chocolate mix in each of your serving cups and put it in fridge for it to set. 20-30 minutes later it will be set and you can garnish with some whipped cream and oreo cookie. Store in fridge till ready to serve.

Note: I made the whipped cream for garnish by taking 3/4 cup cream and 1-2tsp of sugar (If you want a sweeter topping add sugar as per your taste).

 

CM2

It was a delicious recipe…. the mix of semi sweet and unsweetened made it really delicious. I definitely had to double the recipe and convert into imperial measurements. But it turned out delicious and I enjoyed every single bite of it!

Check out the original video (linked above) and try the recipe for sure.

Until next time,

Happy cooking,

Cheers =)

Mini Chocolate Raspberry Brownie Trifle

You know how you keep pinning food recipes on Pinterest with the desire to try it asap….and then you never do it….That has been story of my life :( With work and crazy routine, it has been hard to try new recipes! Last dessert pin of mine was a recipe for Raspberry Trifle that I saw on My Baking Addiction’s facebook page. It looked soo delicious. It is a creation made for Ghirardelli’s Small Bite Campaign. The campaign is about using Ghirardelli Chocolates to create small desserts…. There are many mini dessert recipes on their website.

So even though I am not a raspberry person, I wanted to try this recipe….So I did…..

Mini Chocolate Raspberry Brownie Trifle

 

Mini Chocolate Raspberry Brownie Trifle

Recipe from Ghirardelli

Ingredients: (Makes 9 Cups)

For the Brownies
1 cup Ghirardelli® 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chips
3/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1 cup granulated sugar (I used 3/4 cup)
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
9 Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Raspberry Filled SQUARES™

For the Ganache
6 ounces heavy cream
4 ounces Ghirardelli® 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chips

For the Garnish
2 cups freshly whipped cream or whipped topping (I made my own whipped cream- Use 1 cup heavy whipping cream, 2 tbsp of sugar and whip till it forms stiff peaks)
1 1/2 cups fresh raspberries

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Line an 8×8 inch baking pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Microwave Ghirardelli® 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chips and butter in a large bowl microwave-safe bowl at medium (50%)power. Stir every 30 seconds until chocolate and butter are melted and smooth.
  3. Add sugar, eggs, vanilla, and salt to the chocolate mixture and whisk to combine. Gradually add in flour; stir until just combined.
  4. Spread half the brownie batter into prepared pan. Evenly place the Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Raspberry Filled SQUARES™ and cover with remaining batter. Spread batter evenly over the Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Raspberry Squares and bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes. Remove pan to cooling rack to cool completely.
  5. Once brownies are completely cooled, remove them from the pan and use a small glass or round biscuit cutter to cut the brownies into 8-9 circular shapes. Once you have 8-9 brownie circles, slice each brownie in half horizontally, directly through the centers of the brownies, so each brownie is now two thinner circular brownies.
  6. When ready to serve, make the ganache. Place Ghirardelli® 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chips in a medium bowl. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring cream to a boil and immediately remove from heat. Pour hot cream over Ghirardelli® 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chips and let stand for 3-5 minutes. Whisk ganache until smooth. Allow ganache to cool at room temperature for 10-15 minutes before assembling the trifles.
  7. To assemble the trifles: Place a brownie at the bottom of each trifle dish or small glass. Evenly pipe or spoon a layer of ganache onto each brownie. Add a layer of whipped cream and then a layer of fresh raspberries. Repeats layers. Serve immediately.

It is one delicious dessert…. The brownie, the ganache and the cream…perfection…. just minus the raspberry for me!! I made this and took to my friends home….everyone liked it…. just us non raspberry lovers took our fruit out! While we ate our desserts, we discussed of variations that could be made… maybe used the Ghirardelli Dark and Sea Salt Caramel Squares and some bananas???? Or Some Dark and Truffles and strawberries?????

Mini Chocolate Raspberry Brownie Trifle

So I did miss reading in Step 5 about splitting the circles in 2….so u see thick layer of brownie in the cups… Splitting definitely is better so that when you scoop you get equal amount of brownie, ganache, cream and fruit. I used plastic beverage cups (9oz clear cups) to make this individual desserts. The best part was that inspite of the Bittersweet baking chips and Dark Squares, it did not have any bitter taste (the dark chocolate taste.) I also used less sugar then asked in the recipe as we love our dessert with just enough sugar. Another thing, I whipped up my own whipped cream…. it makes a huge difference compared to from can or cool whip (no offense to cool whip…I love that thing!!)

 It was a very easy dessert to make….. and definitely a good one if you love raspberries. Do try it!!
Until next time,
Cheers =)

Strawberry Cake

Strawberry is my favorite fruit… In India growing up it was rare to find it…now one can find them easily. Here you will find strawberries in my refrigerator most of the time. So when “Miss H” (friend) made this cake and shared pic on Instagram, getting the recipe and making it was necessary :)) Few ingredients, quick and easy, this cake is yum. When she shared the recipe…I was like ooh this is easy… just like her Black Russian Cake -which is a gem of a recipe, super hit in my house and with other friends!

StrawberryCake

Strawberry Cake

Ingredients:

For the Cake:

1 box White Cake Mix

1 pkg Frozen Sweetened Strawberries (I used 16 oz pkg)- Reserve 1/2 cup for Icing

3 oz box Strawberry Jell-O

1/2 cup Water,

1 cup oil

4 eggs

 

For the Icing:

1 stick margarine (I used 1 stick butter)

1 box powdered sugar (I used 1-1/3cup)

1/2 cup Frozen Sweetened Strawberries

 

Method:

1. Mix the cake mix, strawberry Jell-O, Water, Oil and Eggs in a food processor or using hand mixer. Then add frozen strawberries (don’t forget to reserve 1/2 cup for icing.)

2. Grease and flour cake pan. You could do 1 round pan and cut the layers after the cake cools or you could cook in 2-3 different same sized pans. Pour the batter in cake pan and bake at 325 degree F for 20-25 minutes or until done. Cool completely on a rack. (I let it cool for almost 1 hr)

3. Meanwhile combine the icing ingredients and mix well.

4. Once the cake is cooled, cut if you made 1 big cake, spread the icing between layers and on top and sides.

Cut a slice and enjoy!!

So I threw some of my old round pans with intention of buying new ones and still haven’t bought em :( So I used 2 corningware bowls to bake my cakes… so my cake took almost 55 mins to cook…the top and bottom were nice and brown while the inside was pink and moist!! Yes I am going to buy cake pans ASAP!!! I had 2 cakes that I cut in halves and iced, ending up with 2 cakes. Luckily I was having dinner with friends and family so it worked out well.

The cake was yum…. inspite of adding just 1-1/3 cup of sugar in the icing, it was sweet for my taste testers. But everyone loved the cake part..it tastes good and is very moist!! The icing is a little liquid-y due to the frozen strawberry… but it should not be runny… just thick enough for it to stick, while it trickles down a little too. But again, we prefer just enough sweetness in our desserts. So adjust the sugar as per your taste. I also substituted margarine with butter, just because I forgot to get some margarine and did not realize until started to take ingredients out for the cake :P

Suggestions my taste tester’s gave me:

* How about using fresh strawberries and cooking it using some sugar….like making compote or jelly like berries and using that.

* What about not using the icing at all or just maybe in the middle??

* How about Bundt pan?

So next time I make this cake, I am going to be using one of these ideas :D

However, inspite of the sweetness, everyone enjoyed the cake. Another keeper recipe :)) Thank you Miss H for the wonderful recipe :))

Try it out and let me know how you like it.

Until next time,

Enjooy!!

 

Kale Chickpea Salad

“KALE IS SUPERFOOD” — haven’t we heard that a lot :)) well I think it taste nice…. whether cooked or raw. My husband on the other hand, does not think the same :( so I try and make Kale recipes when he is not home or eats something else ;) So I found this Salad recipe on Pinterest.  It is from Wishful Chef   –there are some yum looking recipes there!

I cut down the recipe to make 1-2 servings and changed up 2 ingredients.

KCS1a

Kale Chickpea Salad

Makes 1-2 serving.

Ingredients:

1/2 can Chickpeas/Garbanzo Beans, rinsed (I buy low sodium)

1-2 leaves of Kale, finely chopped

1-2 tbsp finely chopped cilantro

1/2 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 tbsp olive oil

1-2 tsp Lemon Balsamic White

Salt and Pepper to taste

Parmesan cheese, grated.

Procedure:

In a bowl, mix the chickpea, kale, cilantro, garlic, olive oil and lemon balsamic. Add salt, pepper and cheese to taste. Toss it together, cover and refrigerate for 15-30 mins at least. Enjoy!

I just let it sit for 15 minutes on the counter and the flavors marinated well. However I can see letting it sit longer will make it even more delicious. Overall… yum recipe… a good Lunch Box Salad and very quick and easy!!! I did substitute the lemon juice with Lemon Balsamic …. with my Balsamic craze lately ;) and I am not a parsley fan, but love cilantro so I added that. So I am not sure if these 2 changes will bring about much flavor changes however I was happy with it. For the original recipe Click HERE

This is all for today, hopefully you will try and enjoy this quick, easy and yum salad!!

Until next time,

Cheers =)

Avacado-Onion-Tomato Sandwich

Today I have easy and quick lunch recipe! A friend of mine introduced this sandwich few years ago… and it has been my favorite ever since. It is sort of eating guacamole between 2 slices of bread…just that all the ingredients are sliced ;) Serve this with some tomato soup, chips, fries, chilli sauce or eat it just plain… this simple sandwich is yumm!!

AOTS

Avacado-Onion-Tomato Sandwich

Serving: 1

Ingredients:

2 slices of Bread of your choice.

1/2 Avocado

1/2 Tomato

few slices of Onion

Cilantro, finely chopped

green chillies, sliced (optional)

salt and pepper

butter for roasting

Method:

Butter the slices of bread. Turn them so the buttered side is on the outside. Layer  one slice with avocado and sprinkle some salt and pepper. Next, layer the tomatoes, and onions, sprinkle some more salt and pepper. Sprinkle the cilantro and green chillies (if using). Top it with the other slice. Heat a skillet (or you could do this on a Panini grill). Put the prepared sandwich in the skillet and press down using a spatula. Let it brown and turn to brown the other side. Cut in 2 and serve.

Easy-peasy :))

This sandwich is better eaten warm…. however, I have eaten it room temperature too and it taste just as delicious. You could practically use any bread of your choice-I have tried it on White, Sourdough, Italian, Hoagie Roll, and  Mexican bread, (pictured, can’t remember the name) that I found at the local farmers market. The simplicity of the ingredients and seasonings make this a nice and light sandwich.

Until next time,

Cheers =)