Nimi's Culinary Ventures

Tahini cookies to spring up the festive spirits !!!

Baking, cookies, Snacks | December 25, 2015 | By

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   With the start of the festive break at school have been planning to put better use of the time that I save on from my busy bee schedule.I had met Orly Ziv author of “The Israeli cookbook”-a charming woman with a captivating smile during my visit to Beijing for the Gourmand World cookbook awards. Little did I know that our friendship would help us meet each other again in Munnar.It was the biggest surprise for me when Orly wrote to me that she had plans to come to Kerala and would love to meet up .We met up in May and had the best moments together..one of her gifts was the special tahini paste from Israel .It’s Christmas and heres a recipe for Tahini Almond cookiesfrom her cookbook that kept me craving for more..

 

 

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Tahini Almond cookies
3564 calories
461 g
0 g
170 g
76 g
23 g
801 g
429 g
152 g
0 g
138 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
801g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 3564
Calories from Fat 1421
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 170g
261%
Saturated Fat 23g
117%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 65g
Monounsaturated Fat 73g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 429mg
18%
Total Carbohydrates 461g
154%
Dietary Fiber 29g
117%
Sugars 152g
Protein 76g
Vitamin A
4%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
112%
Iron
145%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup flour
  2. 1 cup wheat flour
  3. 1 cup almond flour
  4. 150g unsalted butte
  5. 3/4 cup sugar
  6. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  7. pinch of salt
  8. 2 tbsp of water
  9. 1 cup of tahini
  10. almond silvers optional
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 175 degree celsius
  2. In food processor blend all the flours, butter sugar , vanilla and salt till the mix becomes like coarse crumbs.Add water and tahini and process until smooth dough begins to form. Remove the dough from the food processor bowl and knead it a few times on the counter until smooth.Create small balls of the dough, place them on the baking sheet, then flatten each one slightly with your fingers.Press an almond silver on to the top of each cookie.
  3. Bake for 12-15 minutes or untilgolden brown.Cool and serve.
Adapted from Nimi's Culinary Ventures
beta
calories
3564
fat
170g
protein
76g
carbs
461g
more
Adapted from Nimi's Culinary Ventures
Nimi's Culinary Ventures http://nimisrecipes.com/
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Heres the interview that was aired on the Timesgroup channel “Magic bricks now” in the show  Great Getaways

So heres wishing everyone a wonderful Christmas !!!!

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Woohoo..with Whoopie pies for DB!

Baking, cakes, cookies, flour, Snacks | December 31, 2013 | By

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December has been an awesome month for me with a rocking news that actually blew out my mind.Its my passion for Cooking that drove me into writing my book Lip Smacking Dishes of Kerala .I have put my heart and soul in the making of the book…giving life to every single page. Im so happy to share the news that my book is the Winner of THE BEST LOCAL CUISINE BOOK IN INDIA for the GOURMAND WORLD COOKBOOK AWARDS 2013 to be held at Beijing in May 2014 and is eligible to compete for THE BEST LOCAL CUISINE BOOK IN THE WORLD. A big thanks to all my friends and family for your support ,blessings and prayers…………………..

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This months challenge for the Daring Bakers was Whoopie pies.It was between a cake and cookie.It was fun baking as my assistant was actually my younger one.It was his choice that we bake Vanilla Whoopie pies.Heres the recipe……..

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Whoopie Pies

2 ¾ cups(660 ml) (11-2/3 oz) (330 gm) flour
1 teaspoon (5 ml) (5 gm) baking soda
¾ teaspoon (3¾ gm) baking powder
¾ teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) (4 oz) (115 gm) butter, softened
1 1/3 cups (320 ml) ( (10-2/3 oz) (300 gm) granulated sugar
2 teaspoons (10 ml) vanilla
1 large egg
2/3 cup (160 ml) buttermilk
Whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a bowl. In a separate bowl, beat butter,
granulated sugar and vanilla with a mixer on medium-high speed until fluffy; beat in the egg. On low speed, beat in the flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the buttermilk in 2 batches; beat until just combined.

Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop 16 mounds of batter onto the baking sheets, about 2 inches (50 mm) apart (about 2 tablespoons (30 ml) batter per cookie); gently form into rounds with damp fingers and smooth the tops. Refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to moderately hot 400°F/200°C/gas mark 6. Bake the cookies until they spring back when pressed, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool 5 minutes, then remove to a rack to cool completely

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Vanilla filling

Ingredients
1 cup (240 ml) (8 oz) (225 gm) granulated sugar
1/4 cup (60 ml) (1 oz) (30 gm) all-purpose (plain) flour
1 cup (240 ml) whole milk
1/4 cup (60 ml) heavy cream (about 35%)
1 cup (2 sticks) (8 oz) (225 gm) unsalted butter, cool but not cold, cut into ½-inch (15 mm) cubes
1 teaspoon (5 ml) pure vanilla extract

In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisk the sugar and flour together. Add the milk and cream and cook over medium heat, whisking occasionally, until the mixture comes to a boil and has thickened, 10 to 15 minutes.

Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on high speed until cool, at least 7 minutes. (You can speed up the process by pressing bags of frozen berries or frozen corn against the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl.) Reduce the speed to low and add the butter; mix until thoroughly incorporated. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until the frosting is light and fluffy. You can’t overbeat this mixture. Just let it go until it’s nice and smooth. Add the vanilla and continue mixing until combined. If the frosting is too soft, put the bowl in the refrigerator to chill slightly, then beat again until it is the proper consistency. If the frosting is too firm, set the bowl over a pot of simmering water and beat with a wooden spoon until it is the properconsistency.

My whoopies were quite big as my son was interested in scooping out..anyways he had his fun.Wishing all a wonderful baking ……

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Wishing all a Happy & Prosperous 2014 ! 🙂

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Magic with leftover Idlis-Idli Uppuma!

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Snacks are a must o must here at home and I’m always on the lookout for something that can be prepared in minutes.When it’s idlis for breakfast,I do a makeover with it so that I get a snack to feed my kids at four. Here.s the recipe for Idli uppuma…

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Idli Uppuma

4-5 idlis cut in to small pieces
1 tsp of mustard seeds
1/2 tsp of urad dal split
3 green chillies chopped
1 small piece of ginger chopped
2 dry red chillies broken into pieces
2tsp of oil
1/2 cup of curd
Salt to taste
Curry leaves

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Heat oil in a pan ,pop mustard seeds,fry urad dal,dry red chillies,ginger and green chillies .Add chopped onions and sauté till translucent.Pour in curd,add in idlis ,curry leaves,salt to taste and curry leaves.Turn off the heat and serve hot. You can mash the idlis  if you want for a  crumbled texture.

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A .com munching on Empanadas ;)!

Baking, Breads, flour, Non-veg, Snacks | November 12, 2012 | By

I have been working on posting on my .com for the past days.This post for basically to be put up on my blog but it lagged from all the way from September to November.As its said that ‘better late than never’..heres my post on Emapanada Gallegas.

Empanada is a basically stuffed bread that’ s been baked or fried out .The roots of Empanadas lie in Spain & Portugal…though there are many variations in many countries.This post is dedicated to the DB challenge for September.Thanks to Patri for the awesome recipe.:)

Empanada Gallega

For the crust:

Ingredients

5-1/3 cups  bread flour
2 cups  of lukewarm water (about 85°F/30ºC), approximately
1 tablespoon fresh yeast
2 teaspoons  salt
4 tablespoons  oil
1 large egg, for egg wash

Sift the flour into a big bowl and make a well in the middle. Rub the yeast in with your fingers.In a small bowl, mix the water and the salt.Now, using your fingers or a wooden spoon, start adding the water and mixing it with the flour-yeast mixture. Keep on working with your fingers or spoon until you have added enough water and all the flour has been incorporated and you have a messy ball of dough.On a clean counter top, knead the dough for approximately 10 minutes.Clean and oil the big bowl you used for mixing and place the kneaded dough in it. Cover it with a napkin or piece of linen and keep it in a warm, drought-free place for approximately 40 to 50 minutes.Once risen, turn the dough back into a floured counter and cut it in half. Cover one half with the napkin to prevent drying.Spread the other half of the dough using a rolling pin. You can use a piece of wax paper over the counter, it will make it easier to move the dough around. Depending on the shape of your oven pan or cookie sheet, you will make a rectangle or a round.Now, the thinness of the dough will depend on your choice of filling and how much bread you like in every bite. For your first time, make it about 3mm thin (about 1/10th of an inch) and then adjust from that in the next ones you make.

For the filling:

3 medium sized Onions chopped

1 tbsp of ginger & Garlic chopped

5 green chillies finely chopped

2 cup of cooked shredded chicken

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

2 tsps of black pepper powder

1 tsp garam masala powder

curry leaves chopped

coriander leaves chopped

In a pan pour about 2 tbsps of oil,saute the ginger & garlic with the chopped onions till translucent.Add in the green chillies,and stir for a few minutes.Now add in the powders& chicken .drizzle oil on the sides of the pan stir fry the chicken mix with salt.Add 1/2 tsp of garam masala, coriander & curry leaves  before turning of the flame.

Assembling

If you haven’t used wax paper, either lightly flour or line with wax paper your pan or tray.Cover the base and sides with the dough. Using the rolling pin or a knife, cut the extra dough.Place the filling, making sure it is cold and that all the base is covered. Using a hot filling will make the bottom layer of the empanada become soggy. Be careful to avoid adding too much oil from the filling, try to make it as “dry” as possible.Start preheating your oven to moderate 350°F/180ºC/gas mark 4.Take the other half of the dough and spread it out to the same or less thinness of the base. You can use a piece of wax paper for this too. Take into account that this “top” dough needs to be smaller around than the bottom, as it only needs to cover the filling.If not using wax paper, move carefully the top to cover the filling. If using wax paper, transfer the dough, turn upside down, cover the filling and gently peel off the wax paper.Using your fingers, join bottom and top dough, when you have gone all the way around, start pinching top and bottom together with your thumb and index finger and turning them half way in, that way you end up with a rope-like border.When you are finished, make a 1 inch hole in the middle of the top layer. This will help hot air exit the empanada while it’s baking without breaking the cover.Using a fork, prick the top layer or, using scissors, make snips that go all the way through the top layer.In a small bowl, beat an egg and add a tbsp of cold water. With the pastry brush, paint the top of the empanada with the egg wash. Place the empanada in the oven and bake for about 45 minutes. Check that the bottom part is done.

 

I made different shapes of empanadas..and loved simply baking them..Hope u too enjoy this Empanada Ride!

Nutty Pancakes and spicy chutney!

There’s been quite a lot of happenings in my life for the past months..that I am not able to update my blog regularly.I have joined at my son’s school as a Culinary teacher for the High Schoolers .Its been quite fun being with my kids even at school 😉 In addition to my school work, my  Lip Smacking Classes  on Kerala Cooking  are in full progress on weekdays.
A perfectly new environment..its been quite challenging to bring my horses on the right road.. trying to bring a balance at home and work.There was a Salad making competition at school which was between the 11th and 12th grades.The ideas that the kids came up was indeed a feast to the eyes.I am planning to post some of their recipes in my next post.So wait and watch out.:)
Today’s post is dedicated to my wonderful Culinary students of HRS.This was one of their nutty and spicy treats!

Peanut & Potato Pancakes with Coriander Chutney 

For the Pancakes

4tbsp of rice flour
2 small potatoes peeled and grated
1 big onion chopped
2 tbsps of roasted peanuts
salt to taste

Combine  all the ingredients with  about 3-4 tbsp of water in a bowl and mix well to make a dough.Divide into equal portioned balls.Heat a tawa.Smear oil on ur palms ,flatten the balls into thin circles and  cook on both sides on the tawa by drizzling  little oil .

For the Coriander Chutney

2 cups of coriander leaves chopped
1 cup grated coconut
4 green chillies
2-3 shallots
juice of 1 lemon
salt to taste

Combine all ingredients except for the lemon juice and grind into a smooth paste in a blender using very little water.Mix in the lemon juice,refrigerate and use with the pancakes.

The Monsoons have started in Munnar..enjoy the rain with hot pancakes and chutney!

Oats and Coconut cookies to sweeten a happy moment!

I have been trying to update my food court since last month and the moment to write out came today.It was a total hectic month with my kids down with sickness and the happy moment was a write up  on me in a magazine called FWD LIFE(march 2012 issue).Heres the link to the online issue of the magazine(page 58)http://www.fwdlife.in/emagazine/march2012.html

To celebrate this how about a cookie recipe?Its a very rich  Oats and Coconut  cookie recipe for my foodies to munch on..:D
Coconut and Oats Cookies
 
2 cups of all purpose flour
1 cup of dessicated coconut
1 cup of Cornflakes
2 cups of oats
780gms of sugar
1/2 kg of margarine
50 ml of honey
100ml milk(hot)
20g baking soda
3g baking powder
1 1/2 tsp of vanill aesssence
25g of glucose powder
25g of milk powder
1/2 cup of broken cashew nuts
Preheat oven to 170degree Celsius.
Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix together.
In an other bowl mix margarine, sugar,honey till well blended.
Stir baking soda into the hot milk and blend it with the  margarine mix.Fold in the
dry ingredients  and make small balls.
Place them on  a baking tray and bake for about 25 minutes.
Let them cool and store in an airtight container.
Munch on your healthy cookies!

Kappa Varuthathu /Tapioca Chips with shots of Onam!

maveli nadu vaneedum kalam,manusharellarum onnupole
amodhathode vasikkum kalam
apathangarkkumottillathanum
kallavum illa chathiyumilla
ellolamilla polivachanam
kallapparayum cherunazhiyum
kallatharangal mattonnumilla
adhikal vyadhikalonnumilla
balamaranangal kelppanilla”

Translation : “When Maveli, our King, ruled the land,
All the people were equal.
And people were joyful and merry;
They were all free from harm.
There was neither anxiety nor sickness,
Deaths of children were unheard of,
There were no lies,
There was neither theft nor deceit,
And no one was false in speech either.
Measures and weights were right;
No one cheated or wronged his neighbor.
When Maveli, our King, ruled the land,

All the people formed one casteless races”
(This song is one song that is sung over Onam)

I’m back after all the Onam celebrations in our family .It was indeed an eventful Onam this  year with our family gettogether.The kids were all having their piece of blast.Onam is a festival celebrated in Kerala with great pomp and food has great role to play with the traditional Sadhya and payasams..I have for all my friends my clicky Onam!;)
The recipe that I have in store for you are for homely crispy Tapioca chips..

Tapioca Chips/Kappa Varuthathu
Tapioca -2
1/4 cup of water
4-5 tsps of salt
1 tsp of Kashmiri chilli powder(optional for making spicy chips)
Oil for frying
Peel off the outer brown layers of the tapioca and thinly slice the tapioca chips on a slicer.In a glass stir in the salt and chilly powder to the 1/4 cup of water to make a salty solution.
Heat oil in a wok.Pop in the sliced tapioca and when slightly brown on the edges, pour 2tbsps of salt solution(make sure to keep  a distance from the oil as it will splutter badly).When the sound subsides a little laddle out the tapioca chips from the wok.Drain it on to paper towels to remove the excess oil.Crrunchy crunch them on with ur evening tea 🙂

The pookalam that we put up this year was a kathakali face and here’s my clicky Onam for all my food buddies out there!

Fishy ..Fish Samosas

I have been quite busy for the past two weeks with my younger one having one of those nasty viral fever.He’s recovering slowly .Its today that I sat back to type out one of my best recipes.This is one of my best and I should say that I have quite a lot fans here for this one.Here in Munnar now the Afternoon rains or should I say the evening rains have started..and theres the beautiful Misty  misty hills…:)Everything so green so bliss…:)
And guys don’t forget about the giveaway I have for you guys..only 3 more days to go!



Fish Samosas


For the filling
1/2kg King fish
4 green chillies chopped
1 medium piece ginger chopped
8garlic cloves chopped
3 large onions chopped
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
2tsp black pepper powder
1tsp garam masala powder
2 potatoes pressure cooked and mashed
curry leaves
salt to taste
For the crust
2 cups of Wheat flour
1tbsp ghee
salt to taste
Oil for frying

Make a soft dough with wheat flour,ghee and salt by adequate amount of water.
Pressure cook the king fish with 1/2 tsp turmeric powder and salt.Debone the fish and slightly pulse it in a blender.Heat 3 tbsp of oil in a wok/kadai add in the chopped garlic ,ginger and green chillies and fry.When the color starts changing add in the chopped onions and saute till translucent.Now add the turmeric powder and pepper powder and saute till an aroma comes.Add in the pulsed fish and blend in with the masala.Now mix the mashed potatoes into the fish masala.Sprinkle garam masala powder and garnish with chopped curry leaves.Mix well till well incorporated.If you feel the spice is not enough add a little more of pepper powder and remove from heat.
While the masala is cooling down ,make lemon sized balls of the wheat dough.Heat a frying pan on low flame.Roll out balls into discs and cut them into half.Slightly cook  both sides of the cut dough pieces.Take care not to over cook.Take one piece in hand and fold both ends inwards as shown in the picture.This makes a pouch.You can stick the ends one on the other with plain water.Stuff the pouch with the fish filling and seal the samosa pouch by folding the lower side inwards and sticking the upper end with water.Pinch the corners of the samosa and now they are ready to be fried out.

Heat oil for frying in a wok and drop in the samosas.Fry them till they are golden brown and drain out the oil on a tissue paper.Crispy Fish Samosas are ready to be munched 😛
I’m sending this recipe to

Mini Aloo Bondas for the monsoon!

The rains have started pouring out here..June and July being the monsoon months in Munnar. I really hate goin out when there are showers in Munnar. Some hot chocolate for the kids and tea for us are the best opted drinks with snacks..
The recipe that I have shared here are the ones that comes out from my Mom’s diary of recipes.This spicy  Potato snack is one of my Monsoon favs!

Mini Aloo Bondas 


For the filling
4-5 potatoes pressure cooked and mashed
5-6 green chillies finely chopped
a small piece of ginger finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic finely chopped
3 large onions chopped
cilantro chopped
1 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
a pinch of asafoetida powder
1 tsp lemon juice
salt to taste

For the batter
1 1/2 cup of gram flour
2 tbsp of rice flour
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
Water
salt to taste

Oil for frying

Heat 1tbsp oil in a pan.Pop the mustard seeds and add the asafoetida powder and stir.Add in the chopped large onions,green chillies,ginger and garlic and saute till the onions turn translucent.Add in the turmeric powder,chilli powder and garam masala .Stir and add in the mashed potatoes.Mix well with the required amount of salt and chopped cilantro till well incorporated and keep it aside.Add in the lemon juice and mix.

While the filling cools, mix all the ingridients required for the batter in a bowl.Slowly pour in water to make a batter of thick consistency .Make lemon sized balls of the filling.Dip the balls in the batter and deep fry them in oil.
Your Potato balls are ready to be served with ketchup.! 🙂

Khara Biscuits for ICC!

I’m so happy that Srivalli chose Khara biscuits of Iyengar bakery(Karnataka special) as this months ICC.If you are looking for something to munch of  with a hot cup of tea when its raining..this biscuit is perfect with the spice of chillies and the aroma of cilantro.The best part is that these cookies can be stored in airtight containers for about 4 days.

My husband was quite addicted to these biscuits..guess its bcz he craves masala biscuits…:)

Here’s the recipe
Iyengar bakery Khara biscuit


2 cups of all purpose flour
1/3 cup softened butter
5-6 green chilies chopped
4 tsp sugar
1tsp salt
coriander leaves/cilantro a few twigs chopped
2-3 tbsp yogurt(i used 4 tbsp yogurt)

Preheat oven to 160 degree
Prepare the baking tray with an aluminium foil sheet smeared by a few drops of vegetable oil/cooking spray.
Whisk the flour and salt together in a bowl.
In an other bowl beat the sugar and butter till creamy.Now add in the yogurt.
Mix in the flour(you will have to use your hands ) and incorporate well to make a dough.
Do not use too much of pressure.
Roll the dough into 1/4 inch thickness and cut out round shapes with a cookie cutter.
Line them in the prepared tray and bake for about 18-20 minutes.
If you want more crispier biscuits you can bake for a few for minutes.
Cool them on a wire rack and transfer into airtight containers.

Happy Munchhing..!