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Showing posts with label VEGAN. Show all posts
Showing posts with label VEGAN. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

BAGUIO SOY GARLIC BEANS

BAGUIO SOY GARLIC BEANS
Exploring Asian Cuisine as the tastes of the people at home is getting diverse thanks to living in Singapore.

Today, I’m sharing a recipe from the Filipino Cuisine.

Baguio is a place in the Philippines where the Beans are commonly grown, hence the name Baguio Soy Garlic Beans and as the name suggests you can guess the ingredients.

Beans are a versatile dish and you can make it in many ways. 

The Filipinos are meat lovers and add meats as a variation to this beans dish. But I’m going to share with you’ll a Vegan version of this dish.

What I love about Asian cuisine is, the dishes are very simple to cook.
They do not overcook their vegetables, they only half cook it so they are slightly crunchy and retain their original taste. The spices do not overwhelm the dish. And the best part is they are quick to cook. This dish takes all of 7 minutes right from the cutting to the cooking to the plate. Vegetables are served as sides in the Filipino cuisine. Garlic gives this dish a potent flavor and aroma





Ingredients
French Beans (Baguio Beans) – 200 grams
Sesame Oil / Cooking oil – 1-2 tsps
Garlic – 2 pods / 1 teaspoon finely chopped
Soya Sauce - 1 tbsp
Sesame seeds – ½ tsp toasted






Method 
Trim the edges of the beans. Wash them well. In a pan, Boil water, I added a pinch of salt for the extra punch. Now, dump in the beans and cook for a couple of minutes until partially done.
Fork out the beans and keep aside. Retain the water as it has a lot of nutrition.
In a wok /pan, add a ¼ spoon of sesame seeds, when it starts to splutter, remove and keep aside.
Now, in the same wok/pan, pour in the sesame oil, once hot, add the garlic and saute for a minute, do not cook until red, it will cook some more with the beans later. Add the Beans, Pour the Soya sauce. Give it a good stir.
Cook, just until the green beans are done and most of the sauce has been soaked up. The flavors permeate into the beans and make this dish very aromatic.
Transfer the cooked beans on a plate along with the garlic and the sauce as show in the picture.
Sprinkle in the toasted sesame seeds and serve hot with steaming hot rice.

Tips
· The water that the beans was cooked in can be served as a plain soup with a dash of soya sauce as a side.

Variations
· The Filipinos add meat to the dish, Vegetarians/Vegans can add crumbled Soya chunks to the above recipe.

Thursday, June 11, 2020

AGBELI KAKLO / BANKYE KRAKRO (CASSAVA CROQUETTES)

AGBELI KAKLO / BANKYE KRAKRO (Cassava Croquettes)
Cassava is a staple food crop in many parts of the world.
A native to South America, cassava was introduced to Africa in the 16th Century by Portuguese traders.
Since then cassava has grown to become a staple food for most African countries. Cassava is grown principally for its starchy roots and it is a good dietary caloric source and has since become one of its most important root crop.
Cassava (Agbeli) in the Ewe language (a language spoken in Ghana, Togo and Benin) means "there is life".
Today I’m going to share a beautiful Ghananian recipe, “Agbeli Kaklo” made with this humble tuber that’s so easy to grow and quite filling and nutritious.
Locally, Cassava is known as Agbeli/Bankye and Krakro/Kaklo means fried.
Agbeli Kaklo is a crunchy savoury snack.
The recipe is very simple and has minimal ingredients, yet very tasty.
This dish is normally eaten with grated or shaved fresh coconut.




Ingredients (Serves - 4-6)
Cassava - 2-3 Medium size
Onion – 1 Medium size
Green Chilly - 1-2
Cooking oil
Salt as per taste
Fresh coconut, sliced or grated into thin shavings

Method
Wash and peel the cassava, cut each down the middle lengthwise so that you can remove the stalky thread running through it, cut them into big chunks. Grate the cassava finely.
Place the grated cassava in a sieve and rinse thoroughly in cold water to remove the starch. Leave to drain. Now place the grated cassava in a muslin cloth and squeeze out all the starch. Leave to air-dry a little on a plate (this step is optional)
In a bowl, add the dried cassava, onion, green chilies chopped and salt. Mix well and make a tight ball by pressing firmly to keep them bound together. (Refer Picture)


Deep fry the balls on a moderate heat, turning them intermittently to evenly cook them. Fry until golden brown. Strain off excess oil.



Agbeli Kaklo is served hot with dried coconut. Enjoy as a snack with hot tea/coffee.
Make this as a starter item for a party and surprise your guests.

Variations
· If you like you can avoid Onions

· You can add Freshly chopped Coriander leaves to the mix

Tips
· If you do not have a muslin cloth, you can squeeze out the starch using your hand as well.

· If you don’t air dry the Cassava after squeezing out the starch, then it may absorb more oil while frying due to the moisture, yet, this step is optional.

· The starch that is squeezed out from the Cassava is commonly used in puddings and as a thickener. It can be saved as well, so nothing goes wasted.

Friday, June 5, 2020

THAI BROCCOLI SOUP WITH COCONUT MILK

THAI BROCCOLI SOUP WITH COCONUT MILK
Thai cuisine has some beautiful vegetarian dishes or rather dishes that can be made into vegetarian or even vegan without altering much of the taste. 
One such recipe I had earlier shared in my blog was Som Tam (Click on the hyperlink for the recipe)
The thing that I love about Thai cuisine is; it’s simple to cook and they use so many aromatic herbs and sauces and chilly to enhance the taste and tickle the palate.
My trips to various parts of Thailand and having friends living in Thailand to guide us has helped us enjoy this cuisine.
Today I’m sharing the recipe of Broccoli Soup. Do try this Thai Broccoli Soup.

Ingredients (Serves 4)
Broccoli - 1/2 kg
Rice bran Oil - 2 tablespoons
Garlic cloves - 3-4
Ginger - 1 tbsp pounded
Green chilli padi - 1 pounded with the ginger
Shallots - 2 chopped fine
Lemon grass - 2 tbsps chopped
Kefir lime leaves - 4 (optional)
Salt as per taste
Coconut cream - 1/2 tin (1 tin = 13.66 oz) of Thai unsweetened Coconut cream
Spinach - 3-4 leaves (For colour only)
Coriander leaves - 5-6 Tbsps (For Colour and Garnish)
Lime juice - 2-3 tbsps
Vegetarian Fish sauce - 1- 2 tsps (optional)
Croutons for Garnish

Method

Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan/wok.
Add the shallots, garlic, ginger, and chilly.
Sauté until the shallot is transparent. Add lemongrass and sauté 1-2 more minutes.
Add 1 cup water, kefir lime leaves, salt and broccoli and bring to boil – it’s OK if the broccoli isn’t all submerged, it will still steam.
Bring this to a boil, cover, lower heat and gently simmer 10-12 minutes, or until broccoli is tender.
Once tender, turn the heat off, uncover.
At this point, you could add a handful of spinach (Optional) to give the soup a more vibrant green colour.
Add 4-5 tbsps of coriander (save the rest for garnish). Let this cool down and blend until very smooth using a blender.
(Caution - Blending a blender full of hot ingredients will explode!)
Place the smooth blended soup back in the pot/wok, and let it simmer over low heat.
Stir in the coconut milk – you can start with half a can and add more to taste. After adding the coconut milk do not boil the soup. Just a simmer would do.
Add lime juice, and optional fish sauce (Vegetarians can use the Vegetarian Fish sauce) to taste.
Serve hot in a bowl, garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves and croutons.
You can add a dash of coconut cream as garnish too. I didn't because I'm loving the beautiful green colour.
Dunk into the steaming bowl of the hot soup and enjoy.
A solace on cold winter nights and rainy days...

VARIATIONS


· The coconut milk can be replaced with dairy for non-vegans


· If not adding the Fish Sauce, check for salt and adjust accordingly by adding a little more salt to taste.



TIPS

· Blending a blender full of hot ingredients will explode. Please be careful. Allow the ingredients to cool down before running it in a blender.

Monday, May 18, 2020

WATERMELON RIND HALWA


WATERMELON RIND HALWA
This locked down has given us a lot of valuable lessons and one such lesson is reducing wastage and conserving our resources, valuing nature and living quality lives, something that was by being practiced by our previous generations but somehow forgotten by us.
There are many parts of vegetables or fruits that we tend to throw missing out on the huge nutritional quotient that it offers. It’s time to start making wonderful recipes from them and getting more value out of your buck.
Something that fancied me during this lock down was the watermelon rind halwa. 
All my life I never knew that we could eat the watermelon rind, imagine the gross wastage of food!!!
The watermelon rind is the firm white part of the fruit that's left behind after the bright pink flesh has been eaten or scooped away. We tend to toss this part of the fruit, but it has a crisp texture similar to a cucumber and is pretty versatile. Apparently, it can be pickled and even made into a chutney!!!
Before I share the recipe, I would like to share the benefits of eating the watermelon Rind.
Watermelon Rind is not only rich in fibre but also in amino acid citrulline, which is concentrated in the rind. Citrulline promotes the dilation of blood vessels. One study Trusted Source suggests that citrulline supplements improve oxygen delivery to muscles, potentially improving exercise performance and can help boost the Libido in Men. It helps in lowering your blood pressure. With so many health benefits who would want to throw the Rind.

So here is the recipe, It’s simple and easy


Ingredients
Watermelon rind – 1 cup
Sugar – ¼ - ½ cup
Ghee – 2
Cardamom a pinch


Method
This recipe is simple, after eating the fruit, scrape and scoop out the white portion onto a cup. You can dice the rind, but since I scraped it out the texture was like grated squash so I didn’t further chop it.  
In a wok, Take the sugar, add water enough to cover the sugar. For Example, ½ cup sugar needs ½ cup water. Add a pinch of cardamom powder. Cook until the syrup becomes viscous and the texture feels like oil. At this point, add the scraped watermelon rind, cook until the mixture becomes one and there’s no more water left, you have to keep stirring for a couple of minutes on a high flame. Keep stirring well. Don’t leave it unattended as it can quickly catch the bottom. Don’t let it catch the bottom. When it starts to thicken and leaving the sides of the pan, you know it’s done.
Your halwa is done, serve warm.

Variations
·       You can alternatively grind the rind in a blender
·       Nuts of your choice can be added, I didn’t add any nuts in my recipe.
·       You can use Palm sugar or any other sweetener as a replacement for sugar.

Tips
·       Adjust the sugar according to taste. I took ½ cup, but felt that it was too sweet as the watermelon itself was very sweet. Sweetness depends on the melon you get as well.
·        If you are vegan you can avoid ghee.
·         

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

BROWN RICE KHICHDI

BROWN RICE KHICHDI
Khichdi is the soul food of the Indians!!! Khichdi is a rice lentil porridge that is usually eaten when you want something light yet nutritious.
Making the Khichdi with Brown Rice, packs the humble khichdi to a different level. Brown rice has high levels of fibre and a low glycemic index and carbohydrates.
Khichdi can be made using any variety of rice, but, brown rice retains its healthy bran and germ throughout processing, allowing it to maintain some of those powerful nutrients that the white rice has lost. This processing also allows brown rice to retain valuable minerals like magnesium, phosphorous, and manganese.
Brown rice also has a delicious nutty flavor and a chewy texture due to the nutritious bran layer.
Brown rice has numerous potential health benefits, including high levels of fibre and the potential to lower blood pressure and can help the body to effectively use insulin, maintain a healthier weight, and increase potassium levels.
In India, khichdi is usually served to people recovering from illness, surgeries as it is light and easy to digest. It’s a one pot meal and can be packed with loads of vegetables as well.


Ingredients (Serves - 4)
Brown rice - 1 ½ cup
Yellow Moong dal – ½ cup
Green chillies - 2
Ginger - ½ inch
Onion - 1
Curry leaves – 1 sprig
Coriander Leaves finely chopped – 2 tbsp
Asafoetida (Hing) – A pinch
Cumin seeds – 2 tsp
Peppercorns – 3-4
Turmeric powder - ½ tsp
Salt as per taste
Ghee /Oil - 2 tsp



Method
Wash the rice and Yellow moong dal. Soak it in hot water for about an hour.
Meanwhile, dry roast 1 tsp of the cumin seeds and peppercorns and pound them into a coarse powder.
Pound the Ginger and chillies into a coarse paste, you can alternatively also mince it small or run it in a blender.
Heat ghee/oil in a pressure cooker. Add cumin seeds. When the seeds start to crackle, add the green chillies and ginger paste, sauté, after about a minute, add in the finally chopped onions, curry leaves, sauté until the onion is cooked. Add a dash of Asafoetida, Himalayan Pink Salt and sauté. Drain the lentils and rice and add to this mix. Mix well, Add the coarsely pounded cumin seeds and pepper powder and mix well.
Now add water, the water ratio is depending on the rice. So, If you are taking 1 cup of rice you need to add 2 cups of water.
But since, you have lentils cooking along as well, you will add 3 cups of water. In my recipe, I have 1.5 cup of rice and ½ cup moong dal, so I have taken 4-4.5 cups water. I pressure cook for up to 4-5 whistles. (If cooking in a pan, cook for about 20 minutes till the lentils are tender and the rice is cooked through). I prefer the pressure cooker as I’m always worried about brown rice not getting cooked well.
Once done, wait for the steam to work its magic on the khichdi.
Open after 15 minutes, mix well, garnish with coriander and serve hot with a dollop of yogurt, pickles and papad.
This is the basic recipe.

Tips
·       Adding a ¼ tsp of Pickle oil takes the paste to the next level. If do not have pickle oil, you can add ¼ tsp of pickle masala for an added flavour.
·       Use Ghee instead of Oil for the additional taste. If instead of ghee you use Oil, this dish can be categorized under Vegan recipes.
·       Vegetables of your choice can be added, usually, carrots(diced), green peas, spinach chopped fine etc. are added.
·       You can add 2 pods of garlic, if you like the taste, pound the garlic, along with the green chillies and ginger and follow the recipe above.
·       You can add a tsp of Garam Masala powder if you like some flavour.
·       You can add a tsp of Kasuri methi (dried methi leaves) while sautéing the onions.
·       You can add a tsp of Tomato Puree if you like.



Friday, July 4, 2014

STIR FRY TOFU WITH VEGETABLES

STIR FRY TOFU WITH VEGETABLES
This is a vegan recipe. I was also careful to use the NON GMO Soya bean Tofu.  
(Kindly do click on the word "NON GMO Soya bean" hyperlink to learn more about Non GMO Foods).
There are many varieties of Tofu available in the market. For this recipe choose the medium firm ones. In Singapore you can buy it everywhere and they are known as Tau kwa.
Soya bean is high in calcium which is good for your bones and teeth.

Tau Kwa also has a high amount of Isoflavones which allows one to prevent heart disease. FDA states that consumption of 25 grams of soy protein a day, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease. With these kind of health benefits isn’t it good to add tofu to your vegetables?

This dish is very easy to cook and very healthy as it’s packed with proteins and vitamins. I would call it a crunchy crispy delight. You can eat this with brown rice/ white rice/ Noodles or just dunk into a bowlful of this nutritional delicacy.

Stir fry vegetables with soya sauce is made in many south asian countries with a variation to the sauces / spices used.

Below is the Indo-Chinese, Indo-thai, Indo-Pinoy fusion version. (Indo because there is an Indian twist to it)

You can add any vegetables to it like Broccoli, Celery, Mushrooms, Cauliflower….the list of variations is endless. You can rustle this up with whatever you have at home.


Ingredients
Tofu cubes (Tau Kwa) - 1 teacup
Carrot - 1
French Beans / Snow Peas – 5 - 6
Onions   2
Tomatoes - 1
Capsicum – 1
Green chilly – 1 big (non – spicy variety)
Stem of spinach – a few
Oil – 1 tbsp
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp (optional)
Soya Sauce – 1 tbsp
Ginger paste – 1 tsp
Red chilli powder – ½ tsp (optional)
Salt as per taste
Pepper – a pinch of coarsely ground pepper (optional)
Spring onion for garnish
Coriander leaves for garnish


Method
Cut the Tofu into cubes Deep fry the tofu until medium brown (about 5 to 8 minutes). Set aside. You can avoid frying and can add the tofu at the end when the vegetables are almost done. Tofu cubes are soft and tend to break, hence, frying would be a good option to keep its texture and shape good.

Chop 1 onion, tomato and the ginger and make a coarse paste in the blender. Keep aside.

Julienne ( cut thin strip lengthwise ) the carrots , beans , capsicum, Chilly,  Cut some Spinach stems about the same length as the julienned carrots

Now, heat a pan and pour-in 1 tablespoon cooking oil. Add the cumin seeds, when it splutters, Sauté the onion. Once it’s translucent, add in the blended coarse paste of the Onion- Ginger Tomato and sauté well, until you see the oil come out of the paste indicating its cooked well. Now add the fried tofu and stir-fry for 3 minutes. Add all the vegetables and stir fry for 3 to 5 minutes. Put-in soya sauce, salt as per taste, chilly powder and pepper as required. Cook in steam till it’s done. The vegetable shouldn’t be overdone. It should be cooked but crunchy.
Garnish with finely chopped spring onion leaves and cilantro (Coriander leaves)
You can make a vegetable broth to pour on top or just enjoy the way it is. Serve steaming hot with Rice/ Noodles or just plain.
Flavors of Cumin & Tomatoes give an Indian twist to this dish. Do enjoy this healthy recipe.

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