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Posts Tagged ‘home’

Hello lovely people!


How’s the new year treating you’ll?


Have you made the resolutions you aren’t going to keep? :)


Isn’t it funny (and wonderful) how we make them every year anyway?


Here are mine:


*Get fitter (this includes regular exercise and attempting to eat healthier)
*Give my blog more love
*Spend more time with the people who are important to me
*Start playing the guitar again (this will be done with my very cool guitarist friend Aditi’s help)
*Learn to take better photographs
*Keep believing that the best is yet to come


I think the last one is the hardest. It’s difficult to believe that good things will come when you’ve had a spate of bad things. It’s hard to have faith in people, believing that there’s good inside them, even when they’ve let you down. It’s even harder believing that God has plans for you – the best plans.


But this year, I’m staying positive, and happy, and bright. Because good things will come. I know it. I just need to remember it :)
Will you remind me if I forget?


Here’s a look at some good things that happened over December when I was home. Each one is a blessing.


Dinner with my oldest friends in one of our favourite restaurants.


Old friends and dinner


This gorgeous flower that bloomed on our balcony.


Red flower


A funky new-age Christmas tree my brother put together.


new age Christmas tree


The freshest, greenest, tastiest lettuce ever – from my aunt’s garden.


Lettuce


A massive projector set up by my Dad and brother in our living room, so we could watch movies huddling together under blankets while sipping hot tea.


Projector


And this puppy soaking up the sun, who brings us all such joy.


Puppy in the sun


In the midst of some terribly sad things that happened, us cousins got together and decided we needed to make something sweet.


The result was this stunning Strawberry Pavlova.


Pavlova 1


Everyone helped.


Here’s my brother whisking the egg whites.


Whisking away


Baby cousin washed the strawberries.


Cleaning strawberries


Another added sugar and smiles.


Sugar and smiles


And this pretty one cut up the strawberries.


Cutting strawberries


Even the littlest one contributed. He kept the puppy busy :)


Puppy and baby


This dessert is show-stopper. Expect everyone to drop their plates and stare at it in all its wonder.


Just look at it.


Pavlova 2


And it’s the easiest thing to make. Have a go!


Strawberry pavlova


Largely adapted from: Step by step Baking


Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 80 mins
Serves: 8


Ingredients:


6 egg whites
pinch of salt
350 g caster sugar
2 tsp cornflour
1 tsp lemon juice
300ml heavy cream
200 g strawberries


Method:


1. Preheat the oven to 180º C. Line a baking tray with parchment. Draw a 20cm circle on the parchment and turn it over, so the pencil mark is facing downwards.
2. Put the egg whites and salt in a large, clean bowl and whisk with an electric whisk until you have stiff peaks. Whisk in the sugar a spoonful at a time, until the mixture is stiff and glossy. Mix in the cornflour and lemon juice as well.
3. Spoon the mixture onto the parchment, making sure you stay within the drawn-out circle. Flatten the centre slightly and place in the oven for 5 minutes. Then reduce the temperature to 160º C and bake for 75 minutes. Leave it to cool completely in the oven.
4. In the meantime, whip the cream until it thickens. Wash and clean the strawberries, then roughly chop them into halves.
5. Remove the cooled pavlova from the oven and take off the parchment. Place on a serving plate and crack the top slightly with a spoon. Spread the cream over and top with the strawberries. Serve in rough wedges.


Pavlova 3


Sorry I can’t offer you some pavlova, but here’s something fun!


*GIVEAWAY TIME*


CupoNation India, a website offering discount coupons for a number of leading online retailers in India like flipkart, snapdeal, homeshop18 and many more, wants to give one of you lucky readers a Flipkart voucher worth 500 INR. All you have to do is leave me a comment below telling me which offer you love the most on CupoNation India


I’ll choose one winner through a random draw and announce it in my next post. Comment away!


And have a wonderful, wonderful year ahead! Lots of love!


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An Onion tart at home

I’m a bit late with this post. Been busy- but that’s no excuse. Regular posts from here on out! :)


So when I was home last week, in between cuddles from my dog Simba, large mouthfuls of divine food, and general happiness, I realized my fingers were itching to bake something.


I didn’t want fancy. I wanted comforting and wholesome and warm. Something like home.


And something like that has to be made with ingredients you’d always have at hand.


A little bit of kneading, chopping, and whisking later I had exactly what I wanted.


This gorgeous Onion tart.



The tart case was flaky and buttery.
The caramelised onions were a beautiful honey-colour and slightly sweet.
And the cream and eggs provided an undeniable warmth.


One slice of this baby, and you’re guaranteed to close your eyes in a deep sigh.



It tastes of home.


Caramelised Onion Tart
Adapted from: Step-by-step Baking


Prep time: 25 mins
Cook time: 80-85 mins
Serves: 6


Ingredients:


150 g plain flour
75 g butter, chilled and cut into pieces, plus extra for greasing
1 egg yolk


For the filling:


2 tbsp olive oil
25 g butter
500 g onions, finely sliced
salt and pepper to taste
200 ml cream
1 large egg, plus 1 yolk


Method:



For the tart case


1. Rub the flour and butter together in a large bowl until you have fine crumbs. Beat the egg yolk with 1 teaspoon of cold water and add it to the crumbs. Bring the mixture together with your hands to form a soft dough. Wrap in cling film and chill for 1 hour in the refrigerator.
2. Preheat the oven to 180º C. Lightly grease a 22 cm (9in) loose-bottomed tart tin with butter. Roll out the dough gently and then use your hands to spread it evenly all around the base and sides of the tin. Make sure there aren’t too many bumpy parts. Use a fork to make some holes all over the dough and then cover with some baking parchment. Top with baking beans and bake for about 25 minutes. Take out from the oven, remove the parchment and the baking beans and pop back in the oven for 5 minutes more. Remove and leave to cool.



For the filling and assembling


1. Heat the oil and butter in a large non-stick pan. Add the onions and season well. Cook on high heat until the onions just begin to brown. Then reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 20 minutes, stirring once in a while. Remember that we want the onions to become soft, but not burn them. Take the cover off, and cook on a medium heat for about 5 minutes till any liquid in the pan dries up. Once sightly cool, spoon this onion mixture into the cooled tart case. Spread it out evenly all over the base.
2. Preheat the oven to 180º C. Whisk the cream, egg, and yolk together and season well. Pour this mixture over the onions and spread it out evenly.
3. Place the tart on a baking tray and bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes. For the last 2 minutues, use your grill setting to get a lovely brown top. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Remove gently from the tin and place on a serving plate. Slice and enjoy :)


Drop me a comment telling me what food defines “home” for you :)

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Chicken-corn Quiche

I love Quiche.

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Honestly, what’s not to like?
Eggs, cheese, pastry, and practically anything else you want!

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Infinitely adaptable, wonderfully wholesome, and so easy to make.

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I made a minced chicken and corn quiche. It was delicious.
Please make one. And put whatever you want in it.

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Mushrooms, bacon, broccoli, onions, sausage bits, tuna, peas.
(Just not all together!) :)
I promise you can’t go wrong.

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Chicken and corn quiche

Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 50 mins
Serves: 4
Eat this with: A tomato salad

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Ingredients:

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butter, to grease
1 sheet puff pastry
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, finely chopped
200 g chicken, minced
100 g baby corn, chopped
6 large eggs
100 g cheese, grated
200 ml cream
salt and pepper, to taste

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Method:

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1. Preheat the oven to 200º C. Grease a 9-inch pie dish with a removable base, with butter. Place the sheet of puff pastry on it and press down onto the base and sides, spreading it evenly. Pop into the freezer to chill.
2. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan. Add the onions and sweat gently. Once they turn pink, add the minced chicken and gently fry over medium heat for a few minutes. Next, add the corn, season with salt, and stir well. Cook for a few more minutes. Remove and keep aside to cool.
3. In another bowl, crack the eggs in followed by the cheese and cream. Mix well and season. Add the cooled chicken-corn mixture and mix everything together.
4. Remove the pie dish from the freezer and pour the mixture in. Bake in the preheated oven for about 50 minutes, until the sides are a lovely golden brown, and the top is set. Remove from the dish, slice, and eat warm.

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In other news, I’m going home in a few days. This means several things.

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1. I will be pampered silly.
2. I will eat like a crazy person.
3. I will spend lazy afternoons with my family.
4. I will meet childhood friends and we will laugh like monkeys.

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But there is one other thing.

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5. I will have access to a real kitchen. With equipment and space and a full pantry.
I will have people to help me and I wont have to clean up or do the dishes.
(These are all problems I have to deal with- staying alone, and cooking in a tiny kitchen!)

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In other words, I can cook something insane and not sweat the small stuff!

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So, in typical culinarystorm style, I thought I’d put this up to a vote.
I’ve picked five classic recipes I’ve always wanted to try, and you guys need to help me decide!

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The one with the top vote is the one I will cook and post about :)

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Have a fun week ahead! :)

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