Friday, January 21, 2011

Eggless Oatmeal Raisin cookies

Few months back I ordered a copy of Joy of vegan baking . Now and then I browse recipes and make plans to try one. But till now it did not get the chance, courtesy my toddler. They know how to keep you busy. Then one fine day I said to myself, today whatever comes I will bake something and these cookies came out of the oven. Part of the reason for selecting this particular recipe comes from the ingredients required. I had some oat bran and quick oats along with flax seeds lying in pantry for long .

This recipe seemed to be good to use them all. Cookies came out nice. They were little crispy then the ones I was use to of eating (Pepperidge farm) since I used quick oats instead of steel cut oats as suggested in the book. Also I de-veganised the recipe. But all in all a good cookie recipe with the goodness of flax seeds and oats and without eggs.

Quick oats

(Adapted from Joy of vegan baking)

2 tbsp ground flax seeds (equivalent of 2 eggs)
6 tbsp water
1 cup non-hydrogenated, non-dairy butter, softened (I used same amount of regular butter)
1 1/2 cup firmly packed light/dark brown sugar (I used dark )
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 cup oat bran
3/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
3 cups rolled oats
1 cup raisins

Preheat the oven to 350 F (180C or Gas mark 4). Lightly oil 3 cookie sheets or line with
parchment paper.

In a blender or food processor, whip together the flaxseed and water unti
l thick and creamy. The consistency will be somewhat gelatinous.

By hand or using an electric hand mixer, cream together the butter, sugars
, vanilla, and flaxseed mixture until well blended.

In a separate bowl thoroughly combine the flour, oat bran, baking so
da, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.

Add to the butter mixture and mix until well blended and smooth. Stir in the rolled oats and raisins until thoroughly combined.

Cookie dough, nice and sticky

Use a tablespoon to scoop out the dough and, with lightly greased hands , lightly press the cookies to form 1/2 inch thick round.Bake until cookies are golden brown, 12-15 minutes.

Remove from oven and allow the cookies to firm up for a few minutes while still on the cookie sheet. Transfer the cookies to cool on the wire rack.

Yield : 3 1/2 dozen cookie

I halved the recipe and got about 20 cookies. Instead of 1 3/4 cups of flour I used 3/4 cups of flour since making exact half of 13/4 with measuring cups was little tricky. And for 3/4 tsp baking powder and baking soda I went with 1/2 tsp. Results turned out fine.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Baked Tofu

I have love and hate relationship with Tofu. Depending upon how tofu has been used my relationship takes shape. I do not like it smooth and bathing in gravies. And like it fried with crispy exterior. I was introduced to tofu after coming to US. Many people use it as a substitute for Paneer. But I definitely do not do that. Till now my favorite tofu dish is at restaurant near by . They call it Deluxe tofu , which in essence is a fried tofu in spicy sweet sauce with veggies.

Now coming on to the topic of post. This is a Indian spicy makeover for bland tofu. While searching for ways to consume tofu I stumbled upon this recipe from Madhuram. It is one of the simplest recipes I have come across with delish results. Tofu has crispy exteriors and spicy tangy zing . I used the recipe as such with only increasing the amount of spices a little bit and baking at 450F.

Tofu while marinating

This would definitely make a great party snack. Easy to assemble and cook in large volume. Do give it a try.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Everyday Gajar Matar

Gajar Matar is one easy and healthy side dish. I like the colors in this preparation. Lot of flavor depends upon the freshness of the carrot and peas used. Though frozen peas in US are pretty good but as for carrot they vary in taste so much at different times.

Also Gajar Matar taste better with Red Carrots commonly found in India. Here in US I haven't seen any other except Orange. But it's still tasty.


2 cup diced Carrot
2 cup frozen peas (Thawed)
1 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp carrom seeds (Ajwain)
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
pinch of asafoetida
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 tsp red chilli powder
2 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp dry mango powder (Amchur)
Salt to taste


Heat a pan and add oil. Add carrom seeds, mustard seeds and asfoetida. When seed start to sizzle add dice carrots. Season it with salt. Stir well and cover the pan. Lower the heat and let it cook for 5 minutes.

Now add peas. Stir well and all dry powders except dry mango. Again cover the pan and cook it covered for 5 minutes. Check for doneness of carrot . If you want it more cooked let it cook for another couple of minutes.

I served it with dal and chapati.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Paneer Butter Masala

I do not make rich gravies like this often. Only time I do is when we have company. Not that I want to offer unhealthy stuff it's just that richness makes it more than ordinary. But this time I made this Paneer Butter Masala just for ourselves on weekday as an experiment. Sure it worked. This is very close to the way we are used to eat in restaurants. Do give it a try.

Serves 4-6

1 1/2 cup cubed Paneer
4 Medium size tomato
2 medium size onion
2 tbsp ginger garlic paste
3 tbsp cashews
1/4 cup milk (preferably full fat)
3 tbsp oil
1 1/2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp Kasuri Methi (Dried Fenugreek leaves)
1 tbsp Honey
1 tsp Cardamom powder
2 tsp Red Chilli Powder (If you have Kashmiri Chilli powder that will add a nice color)
Salt to taste


Chop tomato and onions in quarters.

Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan. Add cashews and stir them. After about a minute add chopped onion. Saute for 2 minutes. Then add chopped tomatoes. Cook them for about 6 minutes.

Let the cooked tomato-onion-cashew mixture cool for a while. Then blend it using a blender. Strain this puree to get that silky smooth gravy.

Now again heat a pan and add butter and 1 tbsp oil. Add ginger-garlic paste. After a minute when raw smell from ginger garlic has gone add red chili powder. You may want to lower the heat at this point so that red chill powder doesn't burn. To this add strained puree.

Add salt. Now cover the pan and let it simmer on low heat for about 15 minutes.

By now fat should have separated . Add honey, cardamom and Garam Masala and crushed fenugreek leaves. Let it simmer for another couple of minutes.

At this point if you want you can add 1/4 cup cream for another layer of creaminess. I opted to add full fat milk. Finally add cubed paneer. Stir well and serve hot with naan/ roti.