Saturday, 29 June 2013

The Ultimate Chicken Bread...

Presenting .. THE Chicken Bread :))

We had tea somewhere and they served chicken bread with tea.. It was slightly raw on top and the filling was a nondescript overly spicy mass.. But I so craved the taste of chicken bread that I thought, now or never 

This is originally Shireen Anwar's recipe. I guess almost all the chicken bread recipes u'll find around FB are hers or modifications of it.. As is this one..

I've changed the dough ingredients to suit my own taste and experience. So since her is widely available everywhere, I am giving you my own ingredients and measurements. As with the filing too. 

Here goes then:

The dough

3 and half cups plain flour
1/2 cup nido milk powder
4 tblsp butter - room temperature soft
1 tsp salt
1 tblsp yeast
1/4 tsp castor sugar
1 egg
Lukewarm water

Extra egg for egg wash

Mix together the flour, milk powder and salt.
Add the butter and rub it in to crumb form
Make a well in the middle and put in the yeast and sugar
Pour over the lukewarm water and mix in
Cover and let it froth for 10 minutes
Break in the egg
Then knead a soft non-sticky dough with more water as needed
Cover and let it rise. Took me 2 hours almost

Meanwhile, prepare filling

Boil and shred half a kilo chicken boneless
Heat 2 tblsp butter in a pan
Add 2 tblsp flour and mix
Add milk gently to form a roux.. and keep and stirring so that there are no clumps
Add salt, black pepper, white pepper, zeera and red chili powder. Taste and make sure its spicy.

Once the sauce tastes as you like it, add the shredded chicken.. Dont let it dry too much but keep it a bit moist. Let it cool down.

This amount made 6 smallish chicken breads. So made 6 balls. Rolled each out and placed the filling in between.

Cut strips diagonally on both sides ....

and fold over in a criss cross design. ..

Brush with beaten egg and bake in preheated oven at 200. Use top grill to get the golden colour.

Have fun and do give it a try. The taste is worth the effort involved.

Banoffee Pie

A dream of cream and caramel .. I dont think I should give you the recipe you know .. You'll make it and gain 100 kilos and blame me for it .. Tch tch ...

On second thoughts.. maybe I should, why should I gain the kilos alone? :) 

I have the recipe from the Carnation website.. have adjusted it to my own designs.. but the basic recipe is theirs

For the crust
100 gm butter
250 gm biscuits of your choice

For the Caramel
100 gm butter
100 gm brown sugar
397 gm - 1 tin, condensed milk
* my addition, 1/2 tsp instant coffee

4 medium sized bananas

200 ml cream
(In the UAE I used regular whipping cream. Here, I use the Nestle thick cream. Add 2 tbsp ground sugar to it and whip with mixer. Keep on doing this for around 5 to 8 minutes.. the cream will thicken.. )

2 tblsp chocolate horlicks - or grated chocolate
I used horlicks. . different taste..

(Usually banoffee recipes use condensed milk that has caramelised in a boiling pot of water, cooking for over 2 hours. I dont like the idea of wasting so much gas on it - hence this recipe is perfect from this aspect too..)

Acha so melt the butter and set aside
Crush 250 gm biscuits very fine in a processor.. Use whatever you have, I had some candi, some choco chips, some cafe.. used them all.. made for a very unusual taste and I think that added an extra kick

Add these crumbs to the butter. With washed hands, mix well and pat in a springform tin

Make a crust, pushing a bit to get some side crust too

Keep this in the fridge

For the caramel
Heat the butter and add sugar
On medium low heat, keep mixing and stirring
The sugar must dissolve and be very smooth
Add the condensed milk and keeping it on low heat, keep stirring..
Bring mixture to a boil
Once boiled, dissolve the coffee in a few drops of melted butter and add to the sauce

You must cook it long enough so its firm.. but not too long warna it will become toffee.. which is tasty too but not needed here

Pour over this sauce in the crust and let it rest in the fridge

Once chilled a bit, put the sliced bananas over it and spread out..

Cover with whipped cream..

Sprinkle with horlicks or chocolate and chill at least 2 hours before cutting and serving

It will be gooey and it WILL spill over .. because thats what a Banoffee Pie should do...

Enjoy and do take a brisk walk after it.. you have been warned ....

Fried Besan Naan.. Trip down memory lane!

Our dinner yesterday - besan fried naan nd green chilies, onion rings and chutney 

Back in the last century, when I was a college going girl, on the way back from college there was this naan bai.. wo used to have these naans - and they were only available at 'chutti-time' and only on weekdays. I guess that was his marketing scheme - and I suppose it went very well.. since they were almost always gone for the batch of girls who came by 20 mins later.

I've tried to recreate it and except for the green chilies, its almost the same. I say almost since that naan had the magic of that age.. the hunger after college time.. the companionship of friends and the knowledge that it was SO unhealthy and fattening and yet the carefree attitude that one couldnt care less.. it was yumm and thats all the mattered 

No great science involved - just take a day old naan, wet it nicely. Make a besan batter like you would for pakoras - adding fresh green dhania, green chilies, coarsely crushed whole coriander and pomegranate seeds.

Make a batter not too thick and not too thin. It should flow but not swim 

Soak the naan in it for a few seconds.. make sure its covered from all sides..

The oil must be piping hot - u dont have to cook anything na, just fry it.

Carefully lower the naan in the oil, taking care it doesnt splatter over u. turn carefully after a few seconds and take out as soon as the colour is golden.

Now he used to drain it on the newspaper - with Anjuman all over it  We now know its not healthy so we use brown paper bags slit open or wax paper. Even tissue is not a good idea by the way..

Drain.... and eat as soon as possible.. the colder it gets the greasier.. and the tougher to eat.

Serve with green chilies, fried in same batter, raw onions soaked in lemon juice and chutney of ur choice..

Ah the memories of youth!

Hyderabadi Khubani ka Meetha...

... In all its glory ....

I dont know if this is THE original way of making it.. but its the way I make it.. and I assure you, once you eat it as is, u'll only make it this way, inshaAllah  Dont blame me for the weight you gain though, thats entirely your own business 

Khubani ka Murabba
Soak 1 kilo dried apricots in clean water over night.
Next morning, set the pot too cook on medium heat, adding a cup of sugar.
Taste it, and reduce or increase as per your taste. I'd suggest keeping it a bit on the lower side.

Now here is something which demands utmost deliberation on your part.. you must think, think with all your might and come to the great decision on your own..

Do you, or do you not, remove the stones/almonds from the khubani before you start cooking them?!!

I was not very well when I made it and did not have the energy when I was making it so did not remove them. I thought, cant be that bad.. will pick them out with a spoon. Let me give u a piece of friendly advice - do not do as I did. Make the effort and remove them before u cook the whole lot.

As it were, the stones got in the way of everything.. so I pulled on a pair of food-safe disposable gloves and removed them all by hand. It got done eventually and was alright but in the end I actually did more work that I would have, if I'd taken them out first..

So once your murabba looks nice and thick and syrupy, remove and chill

I hope you have already made it while the murabba was cooking.. which is why at this moment it is in the fridge, chilling too..

Thick cream/whipped cream is just that..
Nuts as per your choice

Assemble by layering the custard, then the murabba in layers in a glass bowl. Top with cream roses or whatever shape you can make.. and sprinkle with nuts if using. Serve this meetha very well chilled.

A note from the testers here in my home: keep the custard a bit more than the murabba. Since the murabba is very sweet, it will be better balanced...

So now make and tell... No great science involved, very simple and easy recipe.. inshaAllah u'll love it


My Panjeeri .. Finally 

I'd been planning on making this the whole month.. but somehow never got round to it. Even today I had to break thrice, while making it.. but finally its done.. I still have a few days to go so I thought I'd make it and eat it at least once in this whole time 

The recipe is my Mama's.. passed down to me through my sis... . I've made it many times, for myself and for others.. usually, when made for myself, I only eat a fraction of it and the rest gets gobbled by 'others' - samajh tau aap gaey hon gay 

Panjeeri has a load of good stuff in it.. and it also has a lot to do with how much you believe in its good properties. Yes it is very calorific.. for all that ghee and sugar. It will give you pimples if you eat too much since it is 'garam' what with all those nuts in it.. But, it will also inshaAllah help you with the aches and pains and weaknesses.. especially after delivery.. But even in winter, to ward off the cold..

I did not measure the ghee I used.. Couldnt be bothered to do so.. it was enough for me to complete the work quickly.. But I had around 300 grms of home made desi ghee and I used it all.. I say 300 because it looked more than the butter packet yet not too much more  Sorry 

Dont use the ghee all in one go.. just put in a little by little, to fry each item and then fresh for the next... 

I'll list the items in grms - they make roughly one mug.. and it really makes no such big difference exactly HOW many almonds and pistas you put in.. just eyeball it.. it should balance more or less. . . .

800 gms semolina – soojhi. Try and get the coarser kind..
1 bowl or 300 grms ghee. Best is if you have desi ghee. But normal will do too
100 grms of coconut, chopped
150 grms pistachios, unsalted please!
150 grms makhanay – water lilly flower/lotus stemm flower/fox nut/gorgon nut
(I guess its just best to find makhanay from an Asian shop – have listed all the known names, in case u don’t have a shop close by though)
300 grms almonds, with skin..
50 grms charmaghaz - muskmelon, watermelon, pumpkin, cucumber seeds in equal quantity
50 grms gond – gum
20 grms kamar kass – sometimes refered to as sage, though also called Flame of the Forrest
6 to 7 green cardamons
500 to 700 gms sugar – depending on ur taste for sweetness. I used a bit less..

What I did was, heat 2 tblsp ghee for each ingredient – add the nuts one by one, and fry them to a nice golden. Remove in a bowl

Proceed similarly with all, keeping them all in separate bowls. Don’t fry them all together and don’t mix them after frying yet.

The makhanay will take up a lot of ghee. Just limit it to 3 tblsp at the most, no matter how much u use, it will soak all up..

Next, bhunfoy the soojhi in ghee – I used maybe 150 gms ghee for that much soojhi
You need the soojhi to be nice and pinkish golden.. just be careful not to burn it.

Next, roughly grind each ingredient in the machine.. Don’t dump them all in at the same time since they each have a different grinding time and don’t all get ground samely..

Then add them one by one to the soojhi, on VERY low heat and keep mixing in. All except kamarkas. Keep that separate in a tin or box.. Don’t include it in the main dish..sprinkle some before u eat..

Once u have all in, remove from heat and add sugar. Mix in well and store airtight once cooled down.

Heat it before you eat, sprinkle some kamrkas on it and eat it with a glass of warm milk or hot tea..

Please ask if something is unclear..

Enjoy and don’t weigh yourself