Work does get in the way of blogging but it shouldn’t get in the way of cooking. Our best cooking happens on the weekends when there’s more time to experiment. Now that we’ve successfully attempted the Hollandaise, we tried our hands at Hummus. Bought some Tahini when in Bangalore and added our own little spin to things.
In Vizag if you want something exotic, you have to make it yourself – no store bought or deli bought hummus for us. It’s incredibly easy to make but you do need Tahini – sesame seed paste – which ever corner shop in a respectable metro would have. I’ve not attempted making it myself. For those less fortunate there is a saviour in the form of online shopping: www.zansaar.com sells Tahini paste and a whole lot of interesting sauces and pastes.
This was a supposed to be a light Saturday lunch, which turned in to bit of a middle eastern meets Indian platter-feast. Our love for middle-eastern food makes this announcement rather unsurprising but terribly exciting nonetheless: we’re going to Turkey on holiday this summer!
For the Hummus: soak 200 gms chick peas overnight. Then blitz with 1 tsp cumin powder, 3-4 tbsps Tahini paste, 1-2 tsps of lemon juice or 1/2 tsp of lime juice, salt, and 2-4 cloves of garlic depending on how garlicy you want. Blitz together – it shouldn’t be too fine, a little chunky will do. I added a little Lebanese seasoning from Fab India and some of the danger chutney from last week (turning out to be quite a versatile little store cupboard addition). Dust with paprika or chilli powder.
For the garlic aubergines: Slice aubergines lengthways as thin as you can. Lightly salt them for about 30 mins then squeeze out the bitter liquid. Heat a griddle or tava, lightly oil the aubergines and place on the tava. Allow them to cook, turning when one side is done, till they get a bit charred. When still warm, mash them with minced garlic (at least 3 cloves) – no real need for salt as you’ve already salted them.With their purple bruises flecked with garlic, these aubergines melt in the mouth – a sprinkling of mint doesn’t hurt either.
For the chicken hariyali kebabs: In a blender or mincer, blitz boneless chicken in to keema. Chop mint, coriander, green chilli and onion very fine. Add to the chicken keema. You could add some boiled mashed potato if you choose. Season with salt and lots of pepper. Shape in to patties, dust with corn flour or regular flour and shallow fry till golden. Suggest frying a little nugget first and check it for seasoning before proceeding with making the rest.
Here’s my very simple recipe for ciabatta bread (you can’t buy pita bread off the shelf here). I’ve not attempted making pita bread yet but will turn to my trusty Bread Maker’s Apprentice next time. Dab olive oil and toast the ciabatta slices on a griddle/tava, then rub with a garlic clove when still hot.