Summer Veggie Salad

These long and hot summer days (yes – it’s always summer in Singapore!) all I feel like eating is food which are cold and juicy, and not the regular hot fish curry and rice (as one would expect in a Bengali household). As I was browsing some cook books, I came across this Asian salad recipe which is beyond delicious and so perfect for lunch or as an accompaniment for those sweltering summer afternoons.

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There is nothing like a fresh cool salad to beat the summer heat and this recipe has a chockfull of healthy goodness. It packs a punch when it comes to the flavours too!

Read on at: http://rheawrites.com/food/veggie-salad/

 

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Green Fruity Salad

I went home to Kolkata for nearly 6 weeks to celebrate the rice ceremony of my cute baby niece and then went on vacation immediately after. After devouring the yum-yum mum cooked food at home and then cheesy pizzas and the uncountable cremalicious gelatos in Italy (or should I say, Eataly), I am back home in Singapore, tanned and with few extra kilos here and there!

And also back to blogging and to healthy eating. For lunch today I whipped up this ridiculously simple but gorgeous looking fruit salad which is crunchy, juicy, zesty and anything but bland. Read on at: http://rheawrites.com/

Beetroot Cutlets

Vegetable Cutlet (or Veg Chop as we fondly call them) is a quintessential accompaniment with a strong cup of  evening “chai” in most Bengali households.

These are healthy too – a sneaky way to add quite a number of veggies into kids meals without making it taste boring.

Read more on how to make it on my blog here: http://rheawrites.com/food/beetroot-cutlets/

Egg Roll – Kolkata’s favourite food

Nostalgia has few names for me, and one of them is Kolkata Street Food. The spicy, tangy, sweet and sometimes slightly questionable, road-side snacks screams my childhood to me. It takes me back to those care-free young days of my life when I could just walk out of the door in the late afternoon for some phuchka (pani-puri) indulgence, or those Durga Puja days when counting the number of those ‘spicy crispy balls dipped in tamarind water‘ was absolutely forbidden! The rule was-the more the better! Haha!

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Today I am going to make a famous Kolkata Style Egg Roll…which is super easy to make and is a great tummy filler when those hunger pangs strike.

As I am writing this, I am recollecting all those early evenings when my mother would effortlessly make this recipe for me and my sister, hungry from school, and the whole house would smell of such yumminess and comfort….Oh ok I should start with the recipe already…

Egg Roll is basically is a flaky, crispy rolled flour paratha, filled with a layer of egg, with some chopped cucumber, onion and chili dressed with tomato ketchup or lemon juice.

Serves – 2 hungry stomachs

Ingredients I needed:

Wholemeal wraps/tortillas (store bought, but very easy to make at home also with flour, pinch of salt, little vegetable oil) – keeps the dish healthy too compared to the fried parathas in Kolkata

Eggs – I used one for each roll

1 cucumber – cut into very small dices

1 small onion – cut into small dices

chopped green chilli – as per choice

salt, pepper – as per taste

lemon juice – 1 lemon

Tomato Chilli Sauce/ketchup – as per choice

Canola Oil – 1 tablespoon

How to make:

Heat up a pan with canola (any vegetable) oil. Break the egg into it and put a wrap on top and let the egg cook over medium heat. Once the side is done, flip it over and cook the other side of the wrap.

Take the wrap off the heat, add the cucumber, onion, green chilli, salt, pepper and lemon juice. Tomato chilli sauce / ketchup can be added too.

That’s it and let me tell you, it tastes amazing! Ridiculously simple recipe (more so if the wrap is from the store) for people like me who wants an effortless great meal prepared in less than 10 minutes.

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Options for a great roll are endless – stuff it with chicken pieces (grilled or tandoori just makes it divine – I am salivating already), lamb pieces, minced meat for something more filling. A small tip is to soak the onion slices in vinegar to lend the right amount of tartness.

Hope you guys have a great weekend and let me get back to enjoying my nostalgia with a piping hot cup of Darjeeling tea.

Till then,

xx

 

 

 

Festive Non-Alcoholic Drinks

Last week, at my friend’s place I tasted ‘Tea Sangria’ and since then I have been meaning to recreate it for my family and also for the blog. Finally got some time to do it! So here it is, a Sangria which the kiddos can enjoy too! The ruby red drink is refreshing and packed with so much citrusy flavours!

A quick trip to the supermarket later, I made the three super easy  thirst quenchers, which are not only gorgeous to look at but delicious to the taste buds too!

 

Tea Sangria with strawberries and oranges

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Things I needed:

Few strawberries, crushed and strained

1/3 cup of sugar

1 1/2 cups of water

1 black tea bag

1 cup of cranberry juice

Round slices of lemon and orange

1 cup of fizzy orange drink

Few strawberries cut into small pieces

I had to boil the sugar and water for sometime before adding the tea bag and steeping it for a while. I let the mixture cool slightly, and then added the pureed strawberries.

Transferring to a bigger jug, I added rest of the ingredients into the mixture, like the cranberry juice, lemon and orange slices and fresh cut strawberries and chilled it for few hours in the fridge.

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Before serving into glasses, I added the fizzy orange canned drink, to make it perfect for the evening tête-à-tête with Hubby Dearest, once he was back from work.

 

Zesty Ginger Punch

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I can look at that smooth coral colour for hours! But be warned: soothing colours can be deceptive! This drink is a bomb in the mouth – the gingery and citrusy flavours just explode, but leave behind the sweetness of the pineapple as an after-taste. Hmmm… Yummmm!

Things I needed:

1 1/2 cup water

1/3 cup sugar

2 teaspoon Ginger-peeled and chopped

1 cup Pineapple juice

1/2 cup Cranberry juice

1 cup ginger ale

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I brought the water to a boil with the sugar, added the chopped ginger bits. I let it simmer for 10 minutes.

I strained and  let the mixture cool down before pouring into a jug along with the rest of the ingredients.

I chilled the drink before serving.

Yes! It’s thats easy!

 

Cranberry Mojito

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A twist to the classic! Virgin style, of course! It has the sweetness of the cranberries, tartness of the lime and freshness of the mint leaves….. what are we waiting for!

The things I needed:

250 ml Lime juice

250 ml Cranberry Juice

a bunch of mint leaves

Lemon quartered and round slices for garnishing

I used the handy mortar and pestle to pound the mint leaves and lemon pieces to get the juice out. In a jug, put the freshly crushed lemon-mint with the Cranberry and Lime Juice, the mocktail is ready to be savoured. Served best with some crushed ice, but I had used ice cubes instead.

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Weekend is here and the festive season is just round the corner – these drinks will surely be loved by friends and family in your parties. Do give them a try and let me know the reactions in the comments below.

Till then,

Keep hydrated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Warm Teriyaki Salmon Noodle Salad

I love Salmon – wild, fresh, frozen, raw or in any other form. It is easy to grill or bake in a foil – so it works well if I am in a hurry and want to whip up a simple dish within minutes!

Today I am sharing one of my favourite comfort meal recipes which is not only healthy but delectable too.

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All I needed to make this warm hearty salad are:

2 Salmon fillets

5-6 Tbsp Teriyaki Sauce

2 small packets of egg noodles

2 tsp canola/olive oil

2 tsp rice vinegar

Thinly sliced carrots, onions, green peppers, spring onions

1 tbsp grated fresh ginger

Salt and pepper

Lime wedges, to serve.

This recipe is good for two people.

I rubbed the heathy cuts of salmon with a good amount of teriyaki sauce, sprinkled some pepper and let it sit for a while. The sauce lends a sweet and savoury taste to the flavourful fillets and makes me go “Mmmm” every time.

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I cooked the noodles (followed the instructions on the back of the packet) for about 4 minutes and transferred it into a bowl.

Ok! Time to stir-fry the veggies in a wok with some oil. After a couple of minutes of tossing the colourful vegetables, I added them to the noodles with 2 teaspoons of vinegar, some salt and pepper.

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Time to grill “the star of the dish”. I put a little (2tbsp) oil in the non-stick grill pan and cooked the fillets for about 5-6 minutes with the sauce (depending on the thickness). It is always tricky to cook fish because of the fear of getting them over or under cooked, so its always best to go “Low and Slow” – low flame for a longer time.

Now comes the fun part! Putting together all the items to make the dish come alive… Plating is something I have started enjoying recently and realised that it can be an effective appetizer – because surely we eat with our eyes first!

As a finishing touch I put some shredded spring onions on top to make the dish pop! A small trick to make them curl is to soak in ice water and refrigerate for some time. Pat the curled shreds dry before serving.

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The salmon in the dish can be easily substituted with any fish fillets available or with chicken too.

Hope this post solves those pesky weekday dinner dilemmas!

Till then,

xo