Sunday, December 26, 2010

Roast Chicken Breast with Potatoes

''When roasting its better to use chicken with the skin but in this dish I used skinless chicken as a healthier option. This is a very simple roasting method in western style. ''

Serve 4
Skin less Chicken Breast 1
Olive oil
2 carrots
4-5 baby potatoes ( small potatoes)
5 cloves of garlic
1 chicken stock cube

Pre heat the oven to 190C for 20 minutes.
Wash the Chicken breast in cold running water. Pat fry with kitchen paper. 
Rub the chicken breast with good amount of olive oil. Season with salt the pepper. Leave till the oven is ready.
Wash well and cut the potatoes in to half or quarters with the skin on. Peel and cut the carrots in to large rounds. Cut 3 cloves in half with the skin on and retain the other 2 cloves as a whole.
Grease the baking try with olive oil and place the carrots, potatoes and garlic cloves in the middle.
Lay the chicken breast on top of them.

Place in the preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes.
Dissolve 1/2 a stock cube in quarter cup hot water and put in to the baking tray and bake for another 10 minutes.

After 40 minutes are gone remove the baking tray and remove the potatoes, carrots in to a serving dish. Reheat the oven to 230C. wash the chicken with drippings by spooning over.
Place it back in the oven for further 8- 12 minutes to brown the chicken.
Make sure to check the chicken once in a while to make sure the drippings from the chicken hasn't dried out. If the water drys out put more stock in to the pan.

Take out the chicken and test for readiness by poking the breast with a metal spoon. If it isn't spongy or the metal fork stuck inside the chicken comes out warm to touch, the chicken is ready. otherwise put is back in the oven for 5 minutes.

Note: The oven heat varies so make sure to check the chicken while baking.
Once baking is done put wine or more stock (1/4 cup) in to the roasting pan and scrape the browned bits to mix. Heat it on top of a stove if the baking dish is stove proof to make a sauce or pour it in to a pan and heat till thickened to make a sauce for a roasted chicken.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Scrambled Eggs

This is the simplest and easiest ways of scrambled eggs. Yet is simply delicious on its own or with a piece of toast.

Serve 1

Egg 1
Butter 1 tbsp divided in half
Milk 1 tbsp
Some Cheddar Cheese cut in to small cubes (1tbsp)
Salt and pepper to taste

Put half of the butter in a frying pan over low heat.  Melt the butter.  The remainder of the butter cut into small pieces.  While the butter is melting, whisk the egg with the milk,cheese salt, pepper and the remainder of the butter.  Whisk until the egg and milk is incorporated.  The butter and cheese will be chunks.  Pour into the non stick frying pan and stir until cooked through, not browned, still moist, soft but not runny.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Chicken Mushroom Patties

This is an Indian style patties/ cutlet ideal for a snack or to use as a home made burger filling.

Serve 8-10

Chicken boneless 300g minced
Mushroom 100g chopped finely
Soya Flakes (minced) about 1/2 cup 
1 big onion chopped
2 capsicum de-seeded and chopped
2-3 garlic cloves chopped
vinegar1 tsp
2 big potatoes boiled and skin peeled off
chillie paste 1-2tbsp
2 eggs lightly beaten and seasoned with salt to taste
corn flour
Bread crumbs
sunflower oil

 Season minced chicken with salt, pepper and vinegar and keep for 15 minutes.
Cut the mushroom in to small pieces. Moisten the dry soya flakes in water and and squeeze off excess water.
Heat oil( 1-2 tbsp) in a non stick pan and add in the chicken and mushrooms and let it cook until water starts to ooze from chicken. Add in the soya flakes and season with chille paste, salt and pepper to taste.
When the meat is cooked take it off fire and heat little oil in the same pan and fry in the garlic, onions and capsicum. Add little salt to taste.
Mix with the meat and keep the mixture aside.
Mash the boiled potatoes till very soft and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Finally mix the meat mixture with mashed potatoes and make a soft and sticky mixture that can be made in to cutlets. (If the mixture is too dry add some stock/ mashed potatoes or if its too sticky and watery add flour to adjust the consistency)

Cover and keep the mixture in the fridge for till cooled down for an hour.
Take the mixture out and be ready to prepare them in to cutlets.
Make 3 flat plates ready with corn flour, lightly beaten eggs, and bread crumbs ( you can season the bread crumbs to you liking with chille powder/ salt / pepper)
Make patties// cutlets by taking a ball of mixture on the hands and pressing it and flattening it in the palms to make flat and 1.5cm thick rounds.

Once cutlets are made dip them first in corn flour to well coat. Dust off excess flour and keep them in tray.

Secondly dip the cutlets in beaten egg quickly to well coat and then transfer to breadcrumbs plate and coat with breadcrumbs.

When all the cutlets are made like this keep them back in fridge lined and covered with cling film till ready to fry. (atleast 1 hour)
Heat oil in a non stick frying pan and put enough oil to shallow fry the cutlets in batches of 2-4.
When the oil is heated well carefully put the cutlets and fry one side till its golden brown and turn over and fry the other side till its done.
Take off heat and lay the cutlets in kitchen paper towels to absorb excess oil.
Serve hot with Ketup.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Strawberry Mousse Pudding

''This is lovely light dessert''

Serve 4-6

Strawberry flavored Jelly Packet
Sponge Cake to line the base of the Pudding dish (optional)
Whipping cream or Cream Topping about yielding about 1 L
(I used a Cream Topping : a brand called Supersun)
Strawberries 200g
Some dark/ milk chocolate grated
Some sugar 

-Get a large bowl and line the base with sponge cake broken down to pieces.
-Make strawberry jelly according to packet instructions and keep in the fridge to set in a different bowl.
-Once its set lightly cut the jelly in to cubes and line on top of the sponge cake layer.
-Making the mousse:
In a blender, puree 1/2 of the strawberries with sugar to taste.( 1tbsp sugar)
Whip the whipping cream until forming peaks and mix with the pureed strawberries and whip with an electric beater again to make the mousse. (Adjust sugar taste by adding icing sugar when whipping)
Alternatively if using Cream Topping mixture: mix strawberry puree with ice cold milk making 2 cups of strawberry milk.Chill until very cold then whip the cream topping mixture with the ice cold strawberry milk until it forms peaks with the help of a electric beater to make mousse.
-Then pour the mousse on top of the jelly layer.
-Cut 1/4 of strawberries in to quarters and line them on the mousse.
-mash the remaining strawberries (1/4) with sugar and heat in under low flame to make a strawberry sauce.
Let it cool and pour on top of the mousse.
-Top the pudding with grated chocolate flakes
- Chill overnight and Serve!!!

Fruit Salad

Fruit Salads should make fresh 'coz when adding sugar the fruit pieces becomes fragile and mashy. So best way to make yummy fruit salad is to mix in the fruits/ nuts/custards/ sugar or syrups just before serving. What I prefer to do is cut the fruits and store them separately in air tight containers in the fridge to ensure the freshness. But certain fruits like banana or apple can not be stored like this and better use fresh.

Serve 4 
Mango pieces 1 cup
Papaya pieces 1cup
Pineapple pieces 1 cup
Strawberry pieces 1 cup
Some Chopped Cashew Nuts
Sugar dissolved in some fresh orange juice 4 tbsp
Raisins handful

Cut fruits in to desired bite size pieces and store in fridge separately in air tight contains till chilled.
Mix the fruits in  large bowl and then add in the sugar orange syrup and mix lightly ensuring not to mash the fruits.
Add in the cashew nuts and raisins.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Sponge Cake with Vanilla Butter Cream Frosting and Chocolate Flakes

I really like this cake recipe as the sponge cake came out perfect. It was soft and bouncy too. I only did top icing as my mom doesn't like much sweetness but i think this cake is better cut in half and filled with Butter Cream Frosting in the middle too.

Makes 9'' cake tin

5 Eggs 
120g Flour
1 1/4tsp Baking Powder
150g Sugar
1tsp Vanilla Essence
80g Butter melted

Grease and line a 9'' baking tin with oil paper.
Pre heat the oven at 180C.
Separate the egg whites from egg yolks.
Beat the egg white with a electric beater until it forms peaks and when the bowl turned upside down the egg whites doesn't fall out.
Beat in the sugar, vanilla essence and egg yolks until sugar dissolves and forms a creamy texture.
Sift in the flour and baking powder and mix with a help of a spatula, writing the figure 8 in the mixture.
Do not over mix as the cake will be heavy.
Pour the melted butter and mix until well incorporated ensuring he bottom is well mixed as the oil tends to seep to the bottom.
Pour the cake mixture to the prepared tin.
Tap lightly to the table to spread even and air bubbles to escape.
Bake in the oven for 25 to 35 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean and the cake is golden brown and bouncy to touch.
(Make sure u watch the cake by time to time to ensure perfect baking 'coz oven heats varies. )
Remove from the tin after baking and allow to cool on wire rack completely before icing.

Make decorations and icing to your likings. 

Vanilla Butter Cream Frosting:
Mix butter and icing sugar 1:3 portions with little vanilla essence and bit of milk. Beat well with hand mixture or electric beater until it gives a creamy texture which is easy to spread on the cake. I used rough equations to suit my liking. Here is a tip:

To make 2 1/2 cups frosting use:  450g icing sugar with 1/2 cup butter softened with 2 tsp vanilla and 3 tbsp milk

I then topped the cake with grated dark chocolate flakes to finish off the decoration.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Mango Curry

This is a way I used to cook Mango when I was in UK. Its not the traditional Sri Lankan way but I do like this curry alot!!!

Serve 4
Mangoes which are almost ready to ripe 4 (with bit sweet and sour taste)
1 Big onion sliced
2 green chillies slit in half
1 tsp mustard seeds
1tbsp ginger paste
1tbsp garlic paste
1'' cinnamon stick
spring of curry leaves
1 cup water
1 cup coconut milk
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1-2 tsp red chillie powder
1/2 tsp curry powder
salt to taste
1tsp sugar or to taste
1tbsp olive oil

Wash, remove skin and de-seed and cut the mango flesh in to cubes.
Heat oil in a cooking pan and when heated add mustard seeds to let it splutter. Add curry leaves,onions, green chillie, ginger garlic pastes and let the onions fry until become translucent.
Add in the mango pieces and add cinnamon stick, red chillie powder, turmeric, curry powder and mix well. Add in water and allow to cook until the mango pieces start to tender. Add salt.
Add coconut milk and cook until the gravy thickens and mango pieces are tender but not mashy. Add sugar to taste.
Serve with rice!!!