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Archive for the ‘breakfast’ Category

Happy new year my darlings!


Culinarystorm says sorry for the slow posts these past few weeks.


There’s been a solid reason for it though – I’ve moved to Singapore!


I’m starting a new job here and it’s been quite the challenge – moving to a new country, doing interesting work I’ve not done before, and making new friends.


But the very best part is being in a place that’s full of fantastic food :)


Last weekend, some friends took me to brunch to place called Wild Honey. The bright and colourful decor, large chalkboard menu, and array of food and beverage choices will make you forget all about the 45 minute wait to get in.


wild honey inside


Wild Honey has 2 locations in Singapore, but the one I went to was in the super pish-poshy mall, Mandarin Gallery, that’s full of designer clothes and art and a rather adorable dessert shop called Antoinette where the macarons are not bad.


I’m a sucker for the chalkboard menus at Wild Honey.


wild honey chalkboard menu


If you think eggs are magic (like me), then you must try this place. They specialise in all-day breakfasts from around the world, so you could choose from Tunisian or Spanish, Norwegian or Aussie, English or Mexican, and many more!


I bullied everyone at my table into ordering different things so I could try a little of everything.


Here’s a look at what we stuffed our faces with.


Spanish breakfast


Spanish Hash- A plateful of uniformly cut cubes of spicy chorizo, corned beef, and crispy potato, topped with poached eggs doused in Hollandaise Sauce and served with giant brioche slices.


Norwegian breakfast


Norwegian- This delightful plate comes with creamy avocado pieces nestled in a bed of whole wheat brioche, covered with grilled asparagus, and then poached eggs that have been wrapped like a dream in Norwegian smoked salmon.


This is what happens when you cut into it.


Norwegian breakfast 2


If you’re drooling all over your keyboard, call me. We’re soulmates.


Portobello road breakfast


Portobello Road- A pile of baked portobello mushroom, spinach, red pepper confit and poached eggs drizzled with lemon Hollandaise on brioche.


Sweet mornings


Sweet mornings- This is what French toast should look like. Thick, golden-brown caramelized brioche. The bread was stuffed with sweet mango. YUM. And the dish also came with maple syrup, vanilla mascarpone, and a bright red berry compote. YUM YUM YUM.


wild honey iced tea


I also tried the Wild honey iced tea which was, well, interesting, but too “herby” for my liking.


Latte


The Latte was clearly pretty decent, because my friend drank two. Also, so pretty!


Juice


There is also an assortment of fresh juices on offer – a breakfast necessity, no? And aren’t the straws adorable? :)


Try Wild Honey if you enjoy international all-day breakfasts, eggs, and oh ya, Hollandaise sauce.


To kick off my first post for 2014, let’s do a poll! It’s been ages right?! I know!



I love you guys! Hoping this will be a brilliant year for us all! Hugs!


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You guys know I’m in the middle of my 30 days of Paleo challenge.


So far, it’s been a mixed bag – with some days of feeling great and energetic, and others where I want to roll up in a ball and never wake up.


It’ll get better I think – but you can read my day-by-day report on my progress and pains here.


What I love most about Paleo so far, is that it encourages me to cook healthy food. I’ve discovered some rather delicious, very healthy, and smack-on Paleo recipes – the kind that would make a cavemen weep with joy.


This one is the first of them.


Say hello to the Green Monster.


Green Monster 2


Don’t you just adore the colour? Doesn’t it make you feel better/fresher/fitter just by looking at it? :)


Green monsters are really easy to make.


Follow this equation to come up with your own: Green leaf + fruit/veggie + dairy.


Green monster ingredients


I used rocket, but you could try spinach, lettuce, or kale.


Rocket


I used an apple, but you could do bananas, pears, or mangoes.


Apple


I used coconut milk, but you could use soy, almond, or regular milk.


Cucumber


These monsters are very filling. You will think it’s just a drink and also plan dinner, but then you’ll drink it, and be like ummm – why you make me feel so full green monster? And then you’ll fall asleep feeling like a boss.


Green monsters are great for when you need your daily dose of fruits/greens but don’t have the time to cook. They’re insanely good for you too – make one and tell me how awesome you feel!


Green monster 1


4 ingredient Paleo Green Monster


Prep time: 5 mins
Cook time: 5 mins
Serves: 2


Ingredients:
1 large apple, chopped
1 large cucumber, chopped
large handful of rocket leaves
200ml coconut milk, chilled


Method:


1. Put all the ingredients in a blender and blend till you have a smooth liquid. Throw in as many ice-cubes as you’d like (to make it thinner or thicker) and blend again. Drink up!


Green Monster 2


Let’s drink to our health :)


What’s the healthiest thing you’ve ever eaten (or drunk)?


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What does the word “brunch” conjure in your mind?


Lazy afternoons? Sun-kissed tables? Family time?
Mimosas? Bellinis? Bloody Marys?
Cheese platters? Fresh bread? Garden-fresh salads?


Brunch is interpreted in many unique ways across the world, but it usually is a languorous meal between 11 am and 3 pm, involving all kinds of food and drinks.


This is why I was intrigued by the idea of the Sunday Brunch & Sundowner at the 24/7 Restaurant in The Lalit, New Delhi – which starts in the afternoon and melts, most blissfully, into late evening.


Let me paint you a picture.


You begin at 1 pm.


Start with a colourful salad. How do you like kiwi, mandarin and beetroot?


1. fruit salad


Now a nibble of sushi.


2. sushi


How about a crumbling of stinky blue cheese?


3. blue cheese


Perfect with a warm spinach bun.


4. warm bun


Let’s wash this down with some champagne, shall we?


5. champagne


Now, maybe we step out for a while. I love Alfresco seating on a pleasant day :)


6. al fresco seating


Sausages, lamb, fish, paneer, kebabs – all barbecued up in front of us.


7. barbecue


Oh you know what I’m missing? A plump prawn.


8. prawn


Step back inside for a slice of pizza now?


9. pizza


Or a swift slice from the revolving shawarma stand?


10. shawarma


The chef can rustle up a Chinese stir fry just for you.


11. chinese stirfry


Or would you prefer Indian tawa veggies?


12. indian tawa veggies


Maybe you feel like the creamiest pototoes ever?


13. creamy potatoes


With a piece of chicken, a side of pork, some button mushrooms, and some crispy skinned fish?


14. meat feast


This place does the BEST salsa. These are the four types on offer: Pineapple (my fav), cucumber, sun-dried tomato, and regular.


15. salsa


Time for a another glass of bubbly.


16. bubbly


Now we shall sit outside for a while. Don’t we look happy? :)


17. happy faces


Gossip and conversations with old friends who are family are an essential brunch component.


Dessert time! Fruit tarts, carrot cake, pistachio cake, or the creamiest panna cotta you’ve ever eaten. Once of each, I say!


18. dessert


We’ll wind down with some green tea please. And suddenly- it’s 6 pm.


19. green tea


What a wonderful, wonderful way to spend a Sunday. The brunch price at The Lalit also includes the use of the pool (perfect for hot summer days) and a complimentary pedicure/manicure at the hotel spa- Rejuve (really takes a relaxed brunch to the next level!).


20. al fresco


Head over to The Lalit, New Delhi, Barakhamba Avenue, Connaught Place for a blissfully lazy and decadently delicious Sunday :)


Prices: 3000 +taxes for the Alcohol buffet, 2200 +taxes for the Non-Alcohol buffet, and 1500 +taxes for Kids.
Timing: 1 pm – 6:30 pm
Venue: 24/7 restaurant and Al fresco
For reservations, call + 91 11 4444 7777, Ext. 331


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My Christmas wish-list

There’s no getting around it. A big part of Christmas is exchanging presents.


It’s a wonderful feeling, tearing open beautifully wrapped packages with glee.
But it’s an even happier feeling watching someone you love opening the gifts you’ve chosen for them and loving it.


I’m part of two Secret Santa groups this year. Just sent out secret presents to a fabulous fellow blogger :)


I believe there are two types of gifts. There is the “want” list and the “need” list.
The “want” list has stuff we are really excited and greedy about. Fast forward to a few days later, and chances are the excitement is over.


Let me demonstrate with my “want” list for this year.


Things I would like include: A KitchenAid, a Kate Spade watch, an Ipad, an Iphone, and the ENTIRE Calvin and Hobbes box set.


Now let’s talk about the gifts I really, really need. This is my Christmas “need” wish-list.


The walnut cake Dad makes only for me every Christmas.


Hugs and smoochies from this puppy.


grumpy Simba


A long walk with Mum.


Decorating the tree with my brother.


Taking a family photo like this one.


family photo


The sight of my Church lit up on Christmas eve.


Isn’t she beautiful?


Church


Eating snacks and drinking Thums Up on my bed with my oldest friends.


Baking something with Dad, with Mom yelling about how we’ve turned the kitchen upside-down.


Being at home with everyone I love.


Making bread and being marvelously surprised in the process. Oh wait! That happened already! :)


crusty white loaf 1


Gorgeous loaf, you.


crusty white loaf 2


There is such a simple pleasure in kneading dough for bread. It has to be therapeutic, because I certainly feel better.


Watching it grow and rise and bake is magical. And then you cut a slice to taste it :)


crusty white loaf 3


Crusty, brown magic.


crusty white loaf 4


Crusty white loaf


Prep time: 30 mins
Cook time: 45 mins, plus rising and proving
Serves: 8-10


crusty white loaf 5


Ingredients:


1 tsp vegetable oil, for greasing
500 g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
7 g packet dried yeast (I used Tesco)
1 tsp salt
320ml lukewarm water, plus more if needed


Method:


1. Grease a clean, deep bowl with oil and set aside. Place the flour, yeast, and salt in another large bowl, and make a well in the centre. Add the water and mix well with your hands until it comes together in a rough, sticky ball. (Add a little more lukewarm water if the dough is too dry.)
2. Transfer the dough onto a clean surface dusted with flour and knead until you have a smooth, elastic dough. This took me about 12 minutes or so.
3. Place the dough in the greased bowl, cover with cling film and leave for about 2 hours, until double in size.
4. Knock back the dough on a floured surface, pushing out the air and deflating it. Shape the dough into a rough log and place in a 900g loaf tin. Cover with a clean cloth and leave to prove for half an hour.
5. Preheat the oven to 220º C. Sprinkle a little flour over the loaf, make some diagonal slashes on the surface, and bake for 15 mins. Then reduce the heat to 190º C and bake for 30 mins more. Remove and leave on a wire rack to cool. Cut into slices and toast, then slather with butter or extra virgin olive oil and enjoy.


It amazes me every single time dough rises and the smell of baked bread fills the room. Pure magic.


crusty white loaf 6


The simple, wonderful joys in life. Family, friends, health, laughter, conversations, and great food.


Those are the gifts I want this Christmas. For me and for you all :)


What’s on your “need” list this Christmas?


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Breakfast is the most difficult meal of the day for me.


It’s because I’m not a morning person.


These three examples from Pinterest depict my morning emotions perfectly.





Are you a morning person? How do you do it? HOW?


I don’t like waking up at all, let alone waking up and then cooking a breakfast.


So after months of dad’s long distance yelling about the importance of breakfast, being miserable after eating biscuits each morning, and feeling very unproductive, I decided to fix things.


I turned to my favourite ingredient of all time: eggs.


Last Saturday night, I decided I would conquer breakfast. And I did.



These savoury egg muffins are the perfect breakfast food. Make 10 on the weekend, and freeze them in sets of two. All you have to do in the morning is microwave and eat! Maybe with a slice of toast. But they’re great with just a dash of tomato sauce.



The best part is you can put anything in them.


Here are some combos you could try:


Tomato, ham, and cheese (yum)
Peppers, mushroom, and corn (yummers)
Salami, spinach, and broccoli (yummest)


Savoury breakfast egg muffins



Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 25 mins
Makes: 10


Ingredients:


7 whole eggs
5 tbsp milk
1 tsp vegetable oil, plus a bit more for greasing
1 large red pepper, diced
2 tomatoes, diced
50g salami, chopped
garlic flakes
mixed dried herbs
salt and pepper to taste


Method:


1. Preheat the oven to 180º C. Crack the eggs into a large bowl, add the milk and whisk well.
2. Heat a non-stick pan, add 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil and lightly toss the red pepper and tomato in it for a few minutes. Set aside.
3. Add the chopped salami, garlic, herbs, and cooled pepper-tomato mixture to the egg mix and stir everything together. Season to taste.
4. Grease 10 individual silicone muffin cases, or a non-stick muffin tray. Divide the mixture into each of them, filling them about 3/4th full. Put into the pre-heated oven for about 20 minutes. The muffins should rise and come away from the sides of the cases. Remove from the cases, cool, and then freeze for upto 1 week. Or just eat right away :)




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It was all yellow

Summer is upon us.


It’s time for all things cool, and fresh, and light.


It gets really hot and grimy in Delhi where I live so I want to share a list of my happy summer things with you :)


Which of these do you love?


Watermelon
Vanilla ice-cream
Linen pants
Fruit cocktails
Mangoes
The colour of the sky
Strappy tops
Longer days
Cold showers
Lemon juice
Indoor afternoons
Sunglasses
Flip-flops
Iced tea
Anything white
High hairdos
Whipped cream


My favourite summer fruit has to be mango.


Every time I smell a sweet mango I’m transported back to my childhood when Mum and Dad would make the most delicious fresh mango ice-cream.


These mango muffins taste a little bit like them. They’re soft and creamy and full of mango flavour.



I used the same recipe as my Banana muffins, substituting the bananas with the pulp of 2 sweet, ripe mangoes. I also added 2 tablespoons of milk to the batter.



Bake some for a taste of summer!



Hoping yours is bright and beautiful :)



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The Bread Lord is pleased.

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Here is proof.

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I’m not going to tell you that this was easy. It was however, completely achievable once I was determined to make it work.

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My first attempt was a miserable failure. I know now that it was because I used bad yeast.

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So that’s my first nugget of advice. Buy good yeast. I used Tesco’s dry active yeast.

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Once you mix the yeast in warm water, it will smell. A rather unpleasant odour. But this will please you, because it’s an indication you’re on the right track. This is what it should look like.

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Once the dough is mixed you’ll put it in a bright-orange bowl, cover it and leave it to rise.

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Then you will go about your business. You will look like a normal person during this time (at least to other people), but only you will know the fervent prayers you will be silently praying for the dough to rise.

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Then you will remove the cloth and find this.

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You will proceed to do a merry dance to the song Glad you came.

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Once that’s out of your system you will return to the dough, bash the air out of it, do a few other things and put it in the oven looking like this.

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This is what will emerge.

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You will look at it skeptically and wonder why it isn’t more golden-brown.
You’ll feel a bit sad. Try not to be. Please. You’ll see why.

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Once the bread is cool, you will cut into it. And marvel in your greatness.

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Seriously.

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Make this bread and feel powerful.

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Just not as powerful as the Bread Lord.
He’s a rockstar. (Said with utter respect, that.)

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Coriander and Garlic Focaccia

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Recipe adapted from: Baking step by step
Prep time: 30 mins + rising and proving time
Cook time: 20-25 mins
Serves: 6
Eat this with: A drizzle of olive oil

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Ingredients:

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1 tbsp dry active yeast or a 7 g pack of dry active yeast
425 g plain flour, plus more for dusting
2 tsp salt, plus more for sprinkling
a few sprigs of fresh coriander, chopped finely and some leaves reserved
1 tsp pepper
90 ml olive oil, plus more for greasing
10-12 cloves garlic, chopped

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Method:

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1. In a small bowl, put in the yeast and top with 4 tablespoons of warm water (not too hot). Stir once to dissolve and leave for 5 minutes.
2. In the meantime, mix the flour and salt in a large bowl. Add the chopped coriander, pepper, 4 tablespoons of olive oil (keep the rest aside), and 240 ml lukewarm water. Add the yeast mixture. Mix all this together gently until you have a sticky dough.
3. Sprinkle some flour on a clean surface and knead the dough on it for about 10 minutes. This really requires some muscle strength!
4. Take a clean bowl, grease the inside with oil and put the dough in. Cover the bowl with a damp muslin cloth and leave in a warm place for about one and a half hours.
5. When you remove the cloth, the dough should have doubled in size. Place it on a floured surface again and knock the air out of it by kneading. Leave it on the surface, covered with a dry cloth for a few minutes.
6. Grease a baking tray and place the dough on the tray. Gently push it all over the tray, reaching the corners and trying to create an even layer. This may be a bit difficult because it is a sticky dough, but if you do it slowly it will work. Cover the tray with a dry cloth and leave in a warm place for about half an hour for the second rise.
7. Preheat the oven to 200º C. Arrange the coriander leaves on top of the dough and sprinkle the garlic pieces over. Poke dimples in the dough with your finger, and then spoon the rest of the oil all over the dough. Finish with a scatter of salt.
8. Place in the upper shelf of the oven for about 20-25 minutes. Remove from the tray and cool on a wire rack. Slice and enjoy with some olive oil drizzled over.

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