Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Soft Crusty Bread

During the recent Eid holidays I had a lot of time on my hands and the children asked me to bake bread.Bread making needs a warm temperature in order to activate the yeast so that the dough is properly risen,almost double the original size.Only then the end results will be effective.Even though it was not the right temperature that day, my kitchen had a little warmth to cope with the bread making procedures and to keep the yeast moving.Once you learn the basic techniques of bread making,you will find the recipe very easy to handle.Moreover you don't have to go through a  hassle finding the ingredients because they are found right in your kitchen.
Here's the recipe for a loaf of bread weighing 750 grams.Go ahead and try.

4 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
2 teaspoon  salt
1 teaspoon sugar
3 tablespoon oil
1 ½  cup  lukewarm water

The Bread Making Technique
In a large bowl mix all the dry ingredients and then add the oil and water ( use the water little by little till you get the correct consistency) and knead it to a soft dough.It should feel smooth and elastic to the touch.If its too wet add a little flour and knead again.Grease another bowl  and  place the dough in it covering  with cling film or cloth and leave it to activate in a warm place.When it doubles the size in 1-2 hours,shape it out like a rectangle log and put  it in a well greased  loaf pan. Leave it to rise for another hour and  then bake it in a pre heated oven at 350F for approximately 40-45 minutes.

Before baking-Don’t forget to slit a few times on top of the bread and brush with olive oil.
Pre- heat -the oven with a bowl of water in the lower rack of the oven so that the steam will enable the bread to get a lovely crust.

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Remove  the loaf from  pan and cool it on a wire rack.Once it's completely cooled,cut into thick slices and enjoy with garlic butter, jam or any other accompaniments  that go well with  bread.  

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Chicken 65 With A Twist

Chicken 65-

Sometimes the children get exasperated eating chicken prepared in the same cooking style. At that juncture I turn to the internet,hoping desperately to find an easy recipe to satiate their taste buds. However one particular day my eldest daughter came home from college and said that her Indian classmate had brought some snacks for the them to relish during their break time.As she had really enjoyed every bite of it,she was very  eager to try making it at home. She was however told to refer the internet for assistance.The recipe was too complicated for her to comprehend fully. And  she passed  the task over to me .Nevertheless I took up the challenge  to recreate  this dish. But then again, to start with,I  had to do a Google search to  get an idea how it looked like .Eventually  I found an appealing one  that caught my attention and inevitably was drawn toward the recipe.The instructions were quite simple and everything else fell into place .This recipe is sans gravy and could be eaten as a snack. In my first attempt,I made it according to the instructions.Thereafter I decided to put my own  twist to it.I added much more than what was called for in the recipe .

I marinated  and fried the chicken according to the recipe -chicken 65  in the video via you tube.Once that was done I started playing with my senses to prepare the gravy.I sautéed  an onion in a little oil, added ginger/garlic and cooked till the aroma was released.Then mixed in some spices like,curry powder and garam ( about ½ teaspoon each).Next step was to  add  a diced tomato and  about 2 tablespoons of tomato paste and cook further.Finally a  cup of yoghurt was stirred in to get a thick consistency of gravy.

Let me stop blabbering  and lead you to the recipe courtesy of you tube. Chicken 65-
the dish may look appealing but doesn't it sound intriguing ?? 

I made this for a potluck gathering with friends

Made with great labour of love