July 26, 2012

Onion Pakoda

Onion Pakoda fondly called as "Bakkoda" is a south-indian savory critters - makes a great evening snack and a wonderful combo with hot cup of filter coffee especially during rainy days.


My mom makes great pakodas - they are something that I grew up with. For me, pakoda is a comfort food - reminds me of my home, my mom and the inviting smell of frying onions that fills up the entire house. I remember, how patiently I used to stand next to my mom chit-chatting with her - eagerly waiting for the first batch of pakoda to come out of the oil. Not only for its taste, I also adore how these little munchies look - for its imperfect shapes & rusticness.


Ingredients
Rice flour - 2 cups
Besan - 1 cup
Onion - 2 medium sized (finely chopped)
Green chillies - 3 nos (finely chopped)
Ghee - 1-2 tbsp
Hing - 1/2 tsp
Red chilli powder - 1 tsp (adjust according to your spice level)
Salt - to taste
Oil - for deep frying

Method
Heat oil in a deep frying pan (on medium heat). Make sure that you fill atleast 1/4th of the pan with oil.

In a large bowl, mix together rice flour, besan, onion, green chillies, hing, salt, red chilli powder, salt and ghee. 

To this mixture, sprinkle very little water (as needed) mixing with your hands. It is enough if the mixture just holds together - should be really stiff & dry (you should be able to make balls out of the dough). Adding just enough water will give crispier pakodas.


Make sure that oil is at the right temperature (to check, drop a small piece of the dough into the oil and the dough should immediately come up the surface). Take about a medium sized ball of dough, use your fingers to press & drop the dough into the oil to form small, bite-sized fritters (don't bother about the shape). Do not overcrowd the oil & deep fry until golden brown.


Drain excess oil in a paper towel and serve hot.


July 20, 2012

Eggless Date Cake

Here I am .. dusting my blog after a long break..

When life gets dull & uninspired, there comes along a few moments - few refreshing moments - that gets you going. For me, "eggless date cake" is definitely a breakthrough - an inspiring recipe - sure it brought back my writing spirits to life..


When it comes to cake recipes, I always have a feeling that adding eggs gives an edge to cake's flavor & texture. Whenever I bake cakes at home, I replace eggs (as I do not use eggs) with flax seeds or something similar and keep my fingers crossed until the cake is done - unsure about how the cake will turn out. But with this recipe, I do not have to be so doubtful - wanna know why? - this cake doesn't need eggs. Oh, whatta relief!!! This cake is such a delicious treat for all non-egg eaters out there!


Ingredients
Seedless Dates - 20 nos
Milk - 1 cup
Honey - 1/2 cup
Sugar - 2 tbsp
All purpose flour - 1 cup
Oil - 1/4 cup
Baking soda - 1 tsp
Cashews - 1 tbsp (coarsely chopped)
Salt - a pinch

Method
Preheat the oven at 350F. Grease the baking pan with some butter and keep it ready.

Soak dates in a cup of warm milk for about 4-5 hrs so that dates gets soft for grinding. Grind it into a smooth paste along with the milk in which it is soaked in. Add oil, honey, sugar and mix.

Sieve together flour and baking soda. Add flour to the wet mixture in 3 batches and mix gently. Finally add cashews to the batter and mix gently. 


Pour the batter into greased baking pan and bake the cake at 350F for about 30 - 35 mins. Insert a toothpick in the centre of the cake to check if its baked (toothpick should come out clean) and let it cool for couple of hours and ENJOY!


This cake is a sure delight and it tastes unbelievable when rested overnight.


Notes:
  • This recipe is loosely adapted from aayisrecipes.
  • You can replace honey (& 2 tbsp of sugar) with 3/4 cups of sugar.
  • Color of the cake can get darker (or) lighter depending on the color of the dates. So do not rely on color of the cake to check its doneness.