31 August 2013

Healthy Baking: The Really Gingery Ragi Biscuit


Ragi, flaxseed, jaggery, ginger, sesame seeds - you might wonder what these utterly healthy ingredients are doing in a cookie! You might even think it's a complete madhouse of an idea. Ragi / nachni / mandwa / finger millets have been an Indian superfood well before everyone and their uncle started pestering relatives abroad to get them boatloads of quinoa for their daily consumption instead of rice. India, being the world's largest producer of millets, it's high time we showed some respect for our own grains, rather than scrambling after every latest food trend in the world. Ragi, like most other millets, formed a part of prehistoric Indian meals, then completely ignored and considered downmarket in the years that followed, where the rich ate rice, and now slowly the awareness of these prehistoric grains as being nutritional powerhouses is coming back. 

For those who haven't tasted ragi flour, it does have a coarse texture and wont feel as smooth as a refined flour in your mouth. The coarseness comes from the fiber content in ragi. Among all millets, ragi has the highest calcium content (370mg/100g). Its calcium content is nearly 10 times that of wheat (41mg/100g) and 35 times that of rice (10mg/100g). 

Sesame seeds, not only make these cookies look pretty, they are also rich in calcium and good fats, and with flaxseeds rich in omega-3, this is one uber-healthy recipe, perfect for your kid's lunch box treat or with your afternoon cup of tea. If you've baked cookies using traditional cookie recipes, you'd know that most of them call for 1-2 sticks of butter, upto 250 grams! Here, you get 20 biscuits with just 3 tbsp butter. You can, by all means, try substituting butter with ghee, for a richer, deeper flavour. 


20 August 2013

When we got grilling at Weber & Neetha's recipe for the best pizza ever



Bangalore weather, an open terrace and a grill when put together, the possibility of fun times are endless and that's what we were shown at the Independence Day celebration grilling workshop at the Weber Experience Center. 


My kinda play-doh :D

I 'grill' stuff in the oven, on the stove top grill pan, but grilling on an actual grill is a different ball game altogether. Lighting the charcoal, getting the grill to optimum temperature, where to position the food on the grill, how to clean the grill, safety precautions, there's a lot to understand and learn about this cooking technique.


The kitchen all set before the workshop


The fun part is grilling is not just about steaks or paneer tikkas. You can make delicious grilled pizzas, roast a whole chicken (or any other bird you fancy) and even make an apple pie on a grill. Once you know how to make the grill work for you, the possibilities are endless. 

7 August 2013

Eating out in Bangalore: Karavalli - A trip down the West Coast

"Karavalli has been around in Bangalore for the last 23 years with 80% of the menu remaining the same from the times the restaurant started"says Executive Chef Naren Thimmaiah. He has every reason to be proud. Any restaurant staying around a city's food scene for so long speaks volumes about its good food and service.
Chef Thimmaiah

Some of us were invited to sample the new additions to the Karavalli menu. The new menu aims to cover a few more regions along the West coast of India, which weren't represented adequately in their menu earlier. They've also added an outdoors grilling section where there's a variety of fresh fish & seafood along with a selection of marinades which you can choose from, making it a seafood lover's delight.

There's a slight modification to the lunch menu too, the number of dishes have been reduced to the regularly ordered popular ones and there's a typical South Indian lunch box 'set' in which lunch is served.

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