Sungtyachi Kodi/ prawn curry from the konkan region

Prawns whole -600 Gm peeled and deveined ,ndo not discard shell , I’ll explain later why not

Marinade with

turmeric – pinch

Red chilli powder – 1/4 t/ 2 GM

Salt- to taste

Curry paste for want of a better phrase

Shredded coconut – 1 T/ 25 GM’s

Onion medium- 1/2 about 50 gms

Teerphal/ Triphala or Sichuan peppercorns- 1/4 t /.5 gm

Black peppercorns -6-8 ea

Cloves -1

Roast above in a glass bowl in the microwave till lightly browned in 30 seconds. Should take about 3 mins and 90 seconds but depends on how strong your microwave is.

Add 1/4

Turmeric1/ 4 t/ .5 gm

Coriander seeds -1 t-/2,3 GM’s

Garlic cloves -4-5 / 10 GM’s

And water to soak..for about 15 minutes..not a whole lot just enough to soften everything and make it easy to blend.

Then grind to a paste and saute with

Oil- 10 ml

Curry leaves -1 sprig / 2 GM

Green chilli- 1 /2 GM or more if you want more heat …I wanted to be able to taste the prawns so put less.

Add coconut cream 100 GM

kokam / cambogia Garcinia / gorakha -1

And simmer .

Then add prawns and simmer for about 5-6 mins add some nicely chopped coriander and U are good to go..Always better if you cook let the prawns sit inside then reheat but don’t overcook.

Ponappas wild wild wild mango curry

22-Feb-07..first written in 2007 , then had to pull out all content because the site got hacked ..so decided to revive it

½ kg jungle mangoes (small and slightly ripened)

Masala 1:
Roast to a dark colour the following ingredients and
grind fine:
1 tablespoon jeera powder
½ teaspoon mustard seeds
¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds

Masala 2:
2 tablespoon cooking oil
½ teaspoon mustard seeds
4-5 curry leaves
4-5 garlic chopped
1 teaspoon chilli powder
1 ½ teaspoon salt
4 tablespoon jaggery syrup

METHOD:

Skin the mango keep the skin in another bowl and add 200ml water.
Squeeze the skin of all the juices, keep liquid, throw out the
skin. Set aside.
The whole mango with seed, salt and chilli powder, put into a vessel
and cook on low flame.
Take a small shallow frying pan and heat the oil.
Season with mustard seeds, curry leaves and garlic.
Add the sliced onions and the ground masala, stir fry.
Add this to the mangoes in the vessel.
Now increase the flame to medium heat and cook for
1-2 minutes, adding the jaggery syrup.

Mix well and serve.

Mango curry goes well with white rice.

West Indian Doubles

Doubles is a kind of street food, which you can find in Trinidad and Tobago, home of the queens park Savannah, and oval, Brian lara and for a short 2 year period, me too.

The photos come courtesy of Andre Huggins my friend and ex purchase manager and goto person, for anything we needed then..

So this street food, is made from 2 pieces of leavened fried bread called “bara”, which is an evolved indian influenced bread, topped with chick peas “curry “, not in the true sense but made the West indian way called Chana, and sometimes tamarind sauce, sometimes shredded cucumber and almost always with hot pepper sauce(as dem Trinis would say- with plenty peppa boy).

There are many places which claim to serve the best ones, ive had the chnace to taste the one near Piarco airport, and in Woodbrooke on Carlos street run by Georges XXX, and a few other places in Debe and so on.Georges used to be my favourite and was run by his ex wife and was the first place where i got to taste my first doubles.

So without further ado.

The Bara.

Flour- 250 gms

baking powder- 2gms

active dry yeast- 2 gms

sugar-5 gms

salt- 5gms

turmeric- pinch( the locals call this saffron powder );)

oil- 25 ml

water – to make a semi soft dough approximately 175 ml

  • sieve flour and add salt , sugar, baking powder, turmeric and yeast. and make into a soft dough.Add in the oil and leave it to rest.Some people also make this with a mix of milk and water..
  • rest the dough for half an hour, and divide and round up into 8-10 pieces.Rest these for aboout 10 minutes and then roll out not very thin. they need to be able to hold up quite a bit of sauce and juice from the chickpeas.
  • Deep fry these till cooked and drain and use as the base for the chana and various sauces and toppings

The Chana

Soak dry chick peas overnight with pinch of baking soda..Make this in a big batch because you can save some to eat another day.Go berserk( ok dont go berserk, but maybe 250 gms is enough).

The next day wash the soaked chick peas and put to cook with some fresh water and some salt, turmeric , and then a bit of ground coriander and ground cumin(they call this Geera ) and Geera is great for other foods to eat with beers like Geera pork.

I also like to add in a stick of cinnamon and some cloves but thats non traditinal, that the actual West indian in me coming out, ( because im from western india).

Cook till soft and creamy ,

then you make some tamarind chutney, hot peppa sauce and pickled shredded cucumbers and u are ready to rock the Savannah.

South Indian Chicken curry/ Kozhi Kari

This is my take on a chicken chettinad or a south indian styled chicken curry. The chicken could be substituted with lamb or beef and then you need to make some adjustments for salt or spices, but more or less will work.What is key though it tasting, chilli in one part of the world might be a bit hotter than the other so its important to taste and experiment a little bit to get to what you will enjoy.

When i was a Chef Tutor, i trained some of my students, Simaranjit Singh and Shamika Ratnayke to make this for a live competiion and they won a gold medal and best in class.Now you go and win a medal from your family /friends.!!

For the marinade

Yoghurt- 2 TB/55 gms approximately

Turmeric – 1/4 tsp , 2 gms

Ginger and Garlic paste- 2 t /10 gms

Salt- 1 t/5 gm

Chicken thigh skinless on the bone is preferred- 500 gms

For the gravy

Oil- 1T /20 gm

Curry leaves- 1 sprig/ 1 gms

green chilli- 2 ea/ 5 gms

Onions brown peeled and chopped-250 gms

Tomato crushed/ Tomato passata – 75 gms

coriander powder- 1 t/ 5gm

cumin powder- 1/2 t / 2 gm

chipotle chilli – 5 gms- yes its unusual to use a mexican smoked chilli but this gives it an amzing flavour profile. Substitute with smoked paprika if not possible to get chipotle

coconut cream- 200 ml

For the dry spice mix

Cardamom green- 3 ea

Cloves- 2

cinnamon stick – 1 small

Bayleaf- 1/2- The indian bayleaf is actually a cassia cinnamon leaf called tej patta, if you dont have that then use bay,

dessicated coconut- 1T/ 15 gms

peppercorns- 8-10

star anise/anasi poo- 1/2

fennel seeds- 1/2 t

Dagadphool/Kalpasi- 1-2 gms this gives it a unique aroma

Toast all in the microwave and then grind to a coarse mix

Method.

Marinate chicken, ideally overnight, if pressed for time then atleaast a few hours.

for the gravy, heat oil add curry leaves , and green chilli and then the chopped onions, sand saute till brown

add the powder spices and tomato and cook till the oil starts to separate from the mix.

Add in the marinated chicken and simmer for about 35 mins or so along with the coconut cream.Towards the end add in the dry spice mix and some chopped coriander.

Enjoy with malabar parathas or thick dosa or rice.

Lamb biryani / biranj E dum pukth

Ingredients for marination

650 gms lamb (with bone)

50 gm yoghurt /dahi

1/2 tsp turmeric /haldi

2 tsp chili powder (check spice heat )

1 green chilli, slit into 2 pcs

1 tbsp chopped coriander

1 tbsp chopped mint

1/2 tsp garam masala pwd , ( make your own it’s much better)

1 tsp.ginger garlic paste 

50 gm fried onion 

1 tsp salt

Marinate overnight

Wash and keep 300 gm long grain Basmati rice, remove water and keep for about 30 mins. You can do this before you start cooking lamb 

In a small bowl, take 30 ml hot water, put in half gm saffron, 1  teaspoon shahi jeera/royal cumin and 1/2 tsp kewda water.

Method 

  •  In a clean pan, take 2 tbsp oil and 2 tbsp ghee
  • Add 2 pieces cardamom, 1 small cinnamon stick (dalchini), 3-4 cloves(lavang), small piece star anise(chakriphool), small piece mace(javitri), 1 bay leaf(tejpatta), 1 big black cardamom (badi velchi). 
  •  Add in 1 big onion (150 gm), finely chopped and fry till golden brown.
  •  Add 2 tsp ginger garlic paste and 2 finely chopped tomato(150 gm or half a small can of crushed tomatoes )
  •  Add 1 tsp red chilli powder, 1 tsp coriander powder, and fry the onion tomato masala nicely, let oil leave the sides of the pan. Keep on a low flame till done.
  •  Next add marinated lamb and cook in the pressure cooker. don’t fully cook it, depends on your meat quality..pressure build up .
  •  Once your lamb is done, transfer it into a pan. let it dry little bit.
  • . Boil water in another pot, add salt and cook Basmati Rice till 1/3 to half done.
  •  Drain the rice.
  • . Deep fry potato cubes/pieces. I cut and cook in microwave for 2 mins before deep frying. Add the potato pieces to the lamb masala in the pan.
  • Pour drained rice on top of the mutton. 
  • 14. Pour over shahi jeera and saffron mixture on top.
  • 15. Add on the top 1 tbsp fresh chopped mint, 1tbsp fresh chopped coriander 1 tbsp fried onion and 1 tbsp ghee.
  • 16. Put a tight lid on and then leave on dum for about 10-15 mins max. Keep a heavy flat pan below this pot to prevent it from burning.
Thats one i made at home for us but have made Biryani for upto 300 people.
And another time

Bao buns

  • Flour – 250 gms
  • active dry yeast- 2 gms
  • baking powder- 2gms
  • sugar- 20 gms
  • milk powder- 25 gms
  • water -150 ml
  • sugar-20 gms
  • salt-5 gms
  • oil 25 ml
  • Sieve flour.Add in all other dry ingredients.
  • add in flour and lightly mix with a fork and keep aside for 15 minutes covered with plastic wrap.
  • knead lightly and add in oil and knead again till smooth.
  • Allow to proof, and then steam for 15 -18 minutes.

These are great even rolled out and pan fried or deep fried and go well with Indian styled Chick peas curry or Trinidadian Doubles, which is another post by itself.

Spinach and Ricotta fatayer

  • Pastry
  • flour- 200 gms
  • baking powder- 2gms
  • salt- pinch
  • butter- 20 gms
  • eggs-1/2
  • cold water – just enough to form a semi hard dough.
  • Filling
  • olive or other oil- 10-15 ml
  • onion – 1/2 medium white onion roughly 50 gm
  • garlic- 1-2 cloves, crushed and chopped
  • frozen spinach- 100 gms ( subsitute with another green leafy vegetable of your choice if you dont have this./ or use corn kernels
  • seasoning- salt and pepper
  • ricotta – roughly 2 T can subsitute with feta/ or paneer /cream cheese/
  1. crumble flour , baking pdr, salt and butter.
  2. add egg and cold water and combine to make a semi hard dough
  3. rest for 15-20 minutes till filling is ready.
  4. For filling, heat oil, add crushed garlic and onion and saute till translucent, then add spinach and cook till dry. turn off heat
  5. add in ricotta and allow to cool down.
  6. roll out dough ad cut with a cookie cutter roughly 10 cms ./ if you dont have a cookie cutter, use something round and cut around with a sharp knife. the thickness should be roughly as much as a 1$ coin-3-4 mm thick roughly.
  7. put some filling in the centre and using the remainder of the egg , seal the edges to form a triangular shape.
  8. https://youtu.be/gDmwskrsfa0?t=336
  9. click on link above to see how they are making the shape.
  10. its easy with some practise. then either you can deep fry these pastries when they are done or bake at medium temp for 15-18 mins(350F/175 C). If baking brush with some butter or olive oil.
  11. Optional can add pine nuts/ slivered almonds and lemon juice/ sumac to the filling.

Tiramisu

Tiramisu is delightful italian dessert made from sponge fingers layered with a kind of mousse/ cream of mascarpone , eggs an cream. This is my evolved version which has baileys or amarula in the cream and kahlua in the sponge fingers. works very well and tastes mind blowing.

So how this works is you have to make a cream mix with eggs, sugar , mascarpone and cool down then whisk in the cream and mix them togther without overworking the cream or it will split. 

Then you dip the sponge fingers in the coffee syrup.(coffeee , hot water and kahlua), but you only dip not make mushy. then in a container or a glass, you carefully arrange them in layers. one layer of sponge, then cream and so on.

I have made this so many times  from 10- to a few hundred portions a work, that these days i dont even have to measure anything, but thats me, Dont be like me, get a proper measuring scale and weigh it. if you want less or more of something go ahead, for things like sugar it can but not for everything. If you are stuck, i can demonstrate via ZOOm or some other medium too

Sponge fingers 400 gms- usually 1 packet
Mascarpone cheese 1 kgs
Eggs 4 nos
sugar  120 gms
bailey irish cream – 30 ml or more if like it boozy
Kahlua or another quality coffee liquer 50 ml

coffee powder-10 gms /2 t
Whipping or thickened cream  250 ml

 

  • Whisk eggs over double boiler till thick and fluffy.
  • Combine with softened mascarpone.
  • Add in baileys irish cream / amarula.
  • Whisk cream and fold into above mixture .
  • Dissolve coffee powder with hot water and dip sponge fingers inside.
  • Layer sponge fingers and cheese mix. keep in the fridge/ freezer to set 
  • Dust with cocoa powder before service.

Foccacia

This is one of my favourite breads. made well its awesome, but its very easy to make too.

  • Flour 1kg
  • Instant Active yeast-20 gm
  • Sugar-20 gm
  • Salt -20 gm
  • Water-800 ml
  • Olive oil-100 ml

Mix Flour with yeast, sugar and salt.Add in the water. the dough will be very very sticky.

Dont worry thats normal.Add in half of the oil.

allow to proof for about 20minutes.(keep in a warm area with gladwarp on dough or a wet tea towel).

Divide into 4 and spread flat on baking trays with the remainder of the oil.make dimples with your fingers on the top

of the dough and then add the oil.

when the bread is proofed nicely(risen) Bake at 195 C for 13-15 minutes.

You can add fresh herbs in the dough and some rock salt on top too.Enjoy.

 

Chocolate mousse

  • dark chocolate -150 gms melted with about 30 ml cream
  • eggs -2 whole
  • sugar-45 gms
  • vanilla essence- 2-3 ml
  • dark cocoa powder- 10-20 gms i use home brand cocoa or valrohna .
  • cream- 200 ml
  • alcohol-10-20 ml ( grand marnier/ whisky or baileys/ rum/ brandy  )

whisk cream and keep in fridge till later.

whisk eggs sugar and vanilla essence over a double boiler till thick and foamy and ribbony consistency.(not dont overcook the egg or you have a sweet scrambled egg)

add chocolate and cocoa powder and alcohol  to it.

allow to cool down then fold in the cream inside and portion into cups or bowls and allow to set for a few hours.if you want this set faster then you have to add in some gelatine after the egg stage.( the gelatine if using should be about 10 gm maximum and soaked with about 40 ml of liquid / water)