Thursday, December 18, 2014

Shrimp Pad Thai















Ingredients :
  1. Oil - 4 tbsp
  2. Garlic - 5 cloves crushed
  3. Shrimp - 12 medium large sized cleaned,shelled ,deveined with tails left intact.
  4. Thick rice noodles - 1/2 pack , approx 250 gms dry
  5. Pad Thai sauce - 8 tbsp
  6. Eggs - 3
  7. Green Onion - 8 bulbs with leaves
  8. Onion - 1 large
  9. Mushroom - 8
  10. Lime - 1 cut into wedges
  11. Corriander leaves - 2 tbsp picked and torn roughly
  12. roasted and crushed peanuts - 4 tbsp
  13. bean sprouts - handful ( it wasn't available here , so I haven't added)

For the Pad Thai sauce :
  1. tamarind paste/ concenterate - 2 tbsp
  2. Sugar - 5 tbsp
  3. Soy Sauce - 2 tbsp
  4. Fish Sauce - 5 tbsp
  5. Chilly sauce - 2 tbsp (recipe in the method section)
  6. Water - 1 cup

For the Chilly Sauce
:
  1. Dry red chillies  - 10
  2. Garlic - 3 cloves
  3. Vinegar - 2 tbsp
  4. salt - to taste
  5. shallots - 4
  6. sugar - 1 tsp
  7. Oil - 1 tbsp
Method for making chilly sauce  :
Soak the dry red chillies in boiling water for few hours .
drain the water and add  the chillies , along with all of the other ingredients except oil into a blender and blend until mixed and crushed well. It should be a semi smooth paste .
Heat oil in a nonstick pan and add the ground paste and cook stirring in between until the sauce is thick and the oil starts showing on the sides of the pan.
Cool and store in the refrigerator . You can keep this for more than a month without getting spoilt.

For the Pad Thai Sauce :
Mix all the sauce ingredients together in a sauce pan and bring to a boil .
Boil for 5 minutes and taste - Depending on the concentration of the ingredients you use , adjust the sour,salty,spicy  and sweet flavor.
The sauce should be equally sweet, sour ,spicy and salty .
Cool and store in refrigerator for 3-4 weeks and use as needed.

To make Pad Thai:
Soak the rice noodles in slightly hot water (not boiling but comfortably hot water) for 5 minutes . drain and keep aside and use for cooking immediately.
Heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a large wok or frying pan . Add the garlic and stir-fry until golden brown. Add the shrimp and stir , Now add 2 tbsp of the pad thai sauce keep stirring until the shrimp changes color (Approximately  3 minutes on high heat). Remove the shrimp to prevent overcooking and set aside.
Add the remaining oil to the same wok and add the onion and mushroom and cook on high heat for 2-3 minutes. Now add the noodles. They will stick together so stir fast and try to separate them. sprinkle a bit of  water, stirring a few times. Now add the 5 tbsp Pad Thai sauce, and keep stirring until everything is thoroughly mixed. taste and add more pad thai sauce if required .The noodles should appear soft and moist. Return the cooked shrimp and garlic mixture to the wok.
Push the contents of the wok up around the sides to make room to fry the eggs. If the pan is very dry, add 1 more tablespoon of oil. Add the eggs and spread the noodles over the eggs to cover. When the eggs are cooked, stir the noodles until everything is well mixed. Add the spring Onions and stir . Turn the flame off. Garnish with crushed peanuts, corriander leaves and bean sprouts. Serve hot with a slice of lime .

Monday, December 15, 2014

Home made Ricotta Cheese















Ingredients:
  1. Milk - 1 litre  OR  2 packets )OR ( 4 cups + 1/4 cup)
  2. Curd - 1 cup
  3. salt - 1/4 tsp or to taste
  4. fresh cream - 2 tbsp
Method:

Bring the milk to a rolling boil and turn the flame off.
Immediately start adding curd a tbsp at a time , stirring continuously.
Keep adding the curd until to start seeing the milk start to curdle.
Once this happens you can stop adding the curd / no harm in adding the rest of the curd also.
Keep this milk aside for 10 minutes.
Line a colander with cheese cloth and pour this curdled milk into it.
Tie and hang it for 4-5 hours until the liquid drains off.
If the mixture is still wet , place some weight over the tied up cheese and let the liquid drain.
Transfer the cheese into a container and add the cream and salt to taste and mix well.
 Store in refrigerator until ready to use .
I have kept it for 4 days without going bad.
You can mix herbs into it and use for pasta, ravioli , have it with fruit  or  honey.

NOTE : You can use lime juice or vinegar to split the milk ,in that case you need to wash the cheese several times before draining it , to remove the lemon/vinegar. Using curd gives a softer creamier cheese.


Friday, December 12, 2014

2 Cheese Ravioli















Ingredients:
  1. Maida/All purpose flour - 1 cup plus more for dusting
  2. Egg - 1 whole
  3. Salt - to taste
  4. Olive Oil - 2 tbsp for dough + 2 tbsp to drizzle over cooked Ravioli
  5. water - you might require a sprinkle to bring the dough together.
  6. for cheese filling :
  7. Mozzarella cheese - 1/2 cup crumbled
  8. Ricotta cheese - 1/2 cup
  9. Parsley - 1 tbsp chopped fine
  10. Basil - few leaves to serve
  11. salt - to taste
  12. Black pepper crushed - 1/4 tsp

Method:

Take the Maida in a bowl and add the salt and mix well.
make a well on the center and break the egg into it and add the Olive oil.
Start mixing it in by pulling in the maida from around the walls until you get a  soft dough (It should be softer than chappathi dough)
If the dough is not soft enough , sprinkle some water and knead well .
You need to knead this dough until it becomes smooth .
Keep the dough aside covered with a damp kitchen towel and allow to rest for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile make the cheese mixture .


 
















Add both the cheeses and parsley, salt to taste and pepper and mix with your fingertips till you get an even mixture - it will be crumbly , you don't have to make it a smooth dough, you just have to get it mixed well to distribute the salt and herbs uniformly.
Divide the dough into 2 parts and roll one of it out into a paper thin sheet.


 
















Use flour to dust as required .
You should be able to see the background through the sheet of dough - as thin as you possibly can roll it out.
cut the dough into circles or squares depending on the shape you prefer. The size of the dough will be the size of the ravioli you get - so cut according to your preference. I made a slightly smaller than 2 inch square.
The idea is to keep your stuffing on one square and cover it with another square of dough and press the sides shut .

 
















For this its easier if the bottom square that is the one on which you place the  cheese stuffing is slightly smaller than the top square - with which you will cover the stuffing.
place a small amount of cheese on a dough square , its easier if you complete this for all the squares and then wash and dry your hands and start laying the top square and pressing them together . Remove any air bubbles and keep the filling in the center in a heap .


 






















Using a fork crimp the outer edges , if your squares or circles look untidy you can cut it with a knife to make the edges neat.
Place each of the Ravioli on a flour dusted wax paper and cover and keep in the refrigerator until ready to cook.

 
















you can place  2 or 3 layers one on top of another , just dust well with flour and place wax paper in between each layer .
When you are ready to serve ,bring a wide pan of slightly salted water to a rolling boil, reduce the flame to medium and drop each ravioli into the boiling water , depending on how thick you rolled the dough - they should cook in a minute or two.
When they are cooked the Ravioli float on the top of the water . 



















Do not crowd the pan , give enough space for each ravioli to move around without sticking .
Remove with a slotted spoon and keep on a plate .
Warm your sauce of choice alongside the boiling water and slowly place the ravioli into the sauce and warm through coating it slightly with the sauce .


 






















Add fresh basil and drizzle with olive oil.
Serve immediately with some grated cheese if you like .
 



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