Saturday, 19 December 2015

GLUTEN FREE CHRISTMAS COOKIES

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GLUTEN FREE CHRISTMAS COOKIES


# Edited: This recipe was featured at Tuesday Tutorial on 5th Jan 2016, check here.

#Edited- This recipe was featured at hearth and Soul blog hop on 4th Jan 2016, Check here.

#Edited- This recipe was featured at Real Food Friday blog hop on 31 st December. Check here
http://organic4greenlivings.com/real-food-fridays-120-healthy-living-for-the-new-year/


Wishing everyone a Happy, Healthy and Safe Christmas


Christmas is around the corner and everybody is busy in shopping, buying gifts for families and planning to bake some cakes and cookies. Last year was the first year I shared my cookie recipe with the other bloggers and I was amazed to see hundreds of varieties of cakes and cookies that other bloggers had baked.


This is my daughter's recipe, and I am very happy and proud to share my daughter's recipe on my 
blog. This is obvious that we learn so much from our parents, but it is possible the other way around also. Like in my case, I am learning so many things from my daughter; I feel it is never late to learn anything from anybody.


I am a proud mother of a learned daughter whose knowledge, in many areas, is much more than mine. This is the 21st century where the young generations are open minded, ready to accept challenges in life and are more exposed to technological advancements. We should be proud of our children and all their achievements.


I remember one funny incidence when my daughter was attending her primary (elementary) school, one day, and I went to pick her up from school. She was sitting in a waiting area with her friends, when I reached there, one of her friends told her, “Oh, your mom looks exactly like you.” I laughed at that innocent comment by her friend.
I had heard from many people about my daughter’s resemblance to me, but this was the first time I heard someone say I looked like my daughter, haha!


But this is true that as we age our identity also changes based on our relationship with other family members, like someone's wife and then someone's mom etc. When I was young, I introduced myself with my name, but later it happened with me many times, that in front of my children's friends, I introduced myself as I am the mother of RG or I am the mother of HG (together with my name). Only yesterday I phoned some friend in my neighbourhood to check my grandson, who went for a play-date with his friend, then I introduced myself on the phone to that lady, and said “I am D's grandmother, just checking if he is doing fine”.



Coming to the recipe, this is a gluten free recipe in which I have used cream of rice. I know this might be a rare ingredient but you will definitely find it in an Indian grocery store, sometimes labelled as ‘rice semolina’ or ‘rice rawa’. I’ve always used coconut flour which I found at the Canadian store ‘Bulk Barn’, I bought it and thought I will use it in some recipe.



RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup rice rawa/rice semolina
  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • ½ cup chickpea flour/besan
  • 1 cup sugar/brown sugar
  • ½ tsp cardamom powder/cinnamon powder (whichever you prefer)
  • 1and ½ cup butter softened/ ghee
  • 2 tbs cashew nuts for decoration. 

METHOD


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees C.
  • Combine all the ingredients with 1 cup butter, keep the ½ cup and add a bit by bit, until it all comes together.
  • When combined, shape into a log shape and keep into the fridge to solidify a little.
  • After 10-15 minutes, the mixture will be cooler and much easier to shape.
  • Shape into small cookie and place on a cookie tray ½ inch apart, decorate on top with half cashew.
  • Bake in the oven for 10-15 mins until golden on the edges. Take them out and rest them on a cooling rack.

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

ORANGE LENTIL AND CARROT CURRY WITH NATURAL COLOUR OF RATANJOT

ORANGE LENTIL AND CARROT CURRY
WITH NATURAL COLOUR OF RATANJOT

# Edited: This recipe was featured at Happy snap bakes for Friday free for all, Check here.

Special announcement about co-hosting Fiesta Friday
I am excited and pleased to host another event on 11th December, called Fiesta Friday which is the 98th week of this blog party. This blog post party is on from the last two years, and it will soon be celebrating the 100# week on 25th of December 2015. In this blog hop, bloggers around the world share their splendid recipes through their blog posts and awesome clicks of the recipes. You can check the above link and join us. Please read the rules and guidelines and follow them to get a chance to be a winner, who will be featured in the next week party. This is a wonderful way to meet and gain exposure and views of the other blogger friends. I am sharing my recipes with this group from so many months and I am assuring you that, this is a friendly, supportive and welcoming group. This week in Fiesta Friday, my co-host and I will visit each and every participant's post and comment on their awesome recipes, which is a normal procedure of this party.
I am co-hosting this event with Natalie of http://stayathomechef.ca/ . If you are joining for the first time please link your post to the main page of Fiesta Friday, my page herbsspicesandtradition and Natalie's page-stayathomechef. I really appreciate and would like to thank Angie of Fiesta Friday who gave me this chance to co-host this event for the first time.


A few days ago, my daughter and I were discussing some recipe. In that discussion, I mentioned to her of a natural root of a tree which my mother was using in curries to give a distinct red/maroon colour. She couldn't believe there was such a thing, she said, “I have never heard about it, what is it?” 


I told her that we’ll try to look for it on the next trip to the Indian grocery shop. By chance, during that very weekend, we went for grocery shopping in the little Indian area in Calgary, and we found it in Indian grocery shop. I was very delighted, and thought, not only I will show it to my daughter but also to use it in my cooking and share it with you all on my blog.


The name of the root in Hindi is Ratanjot, that is what my mom use to call it. Its English name is Alkanet (Alkanna Tinctoria). It is mentioned in Wikipedia that, this root is used to give colours to wines and other drinks. In Indian cuisine, it is used to give a bright red colour to curries. In Ayurveda (traditional Indian healing system with natural things), it is used as a medicine for various ailments, amongst which, one is for reducing fever.


As I have mentioned in my first introductory post that I do not use artificial food colours in my recipes because they are not good for health. But colors like ratanjot I use in my recipes because they are natural and harmless.


Now coming to the recipe, this is a very healthy lentil curry with carrots and tastes awesome. For vegetarian lentils are a good source of protein, though a lot of varieties of lentils are used in my kitchen, but I still try and mix them with vegetables to give new taste and flavour. The other reason to mix vegetables with lentils is that I want to feed it to my grandchildren. In this way, they do not see the carrots and still get the nutrients out of it.



RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup orange lentils
  • 2 big grated carrots
  • salt and chilli powder to taste
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • 2 tsp ginger and garlic paste
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 medium onion (chopped into small pieces)
  • 1 tsp roasted cumin seeds powder
  • 2 tablespoon butter or ghee
  • 2 tbs lemon juice or more to taste.

FOR GARNISHING

  • 2 tbs butter or ghee
  • 1 tsp ratanjot powder

METHOD

  • Wash the lentils 3-4 times in running water till you see the water on the top of lentil is clear.
  • Heat butter in a pot and add cumin seeds, when seeds are changing colour, add onion and fry till golden brown.
  • Now add ginger and garlic paste and saute for few more minutes.
  • Add lentils and grated carrots with the good amount of water- 2-3 cups.
  • Let it boil for 20-30 minutes till lentils and carrots are done and cooked properly.
(I used pressure cooker, which can take five minutes after the whistle)
  • When ready, add lemon juice and roasted cumin powder and mix well.

FOR GARNISHING

  • Heat ghee/butter on a high flame in a small fry pan.
  • Add ratanjot, it will leave colour in few seconds, then garnish on top of the curry as shown in the picture.


Wednesday, 2 December 2015

ROUND-UP FOR MY LEGUME LOVE AFFAIR FOR NOVEMBER 2015

ROUND-UP FOR MY LEGUME LOVE AFFAIR FOR NOVEMBER 2015

I am delighted to present the round-up of MLLA, which I hosted for the first time in the month of November. Special thanks to Susan of 'The well seasoned cook' who conceived this idea in 2008, and later to Lisa of Lisa's kitchen for taking care of Susan's baby for a long period of time, because of them this event is still on, and I got the chance to host it.


In the October round-up, Lisa mentioned that “Help me make it to edition #100.” I wish good luck to Lisa and Susan and hope that this blog party may go beyond #100th edition. One more thing I would like to add here is that it was so nice working with Lisa that I would like to host again in 2016.

MLLA for December 2015 is hosted by Seduce Your Tastebuds.

I would like to thank all the bloggers who shared their recipes in this event of MLLA for November 2015. Now onto some delicious recipes of this month. This month MLLA received  eleven recipes in all. Out of them, three were on black eyed peas/beans, a popular legume which is used/cooked in many cuisines of the world.
Though all the recipes shared were amazing and it was difficult to choose which is the best, I had to make a selection of the best three that I liked.

The best recipe was “Lentil salad with roasted red peppers” by Joy  of joylovefood. This is a very healthy and nutritious recipe and I am very sure its very tasty too, because of the aroma of roasted red peppers, lots of spice with the creamy tanginess of the feta cheese.


The second best recipe was “Maftuol with chickpeas” by Shaheen of Allotment2kitchen.blogspot.co.uk. This is a unique recipe, I have never heard the name maftoul before, which is a Palestinian couscous. She served it with roasted whole carrots in harissa sauce. The carrots look so tempting, this is a full meal. If you are a vegetarian, Shaheen's blog is the best place to visit, where you can find 1000 vegetarian and vegan recipes.



The third recipe which I have chosen is Organic red lentils by Nancy of obllogernewbie.blogspot.ca. Her recipe looks simple and nutritious with loaded vegetables and seasoning, but it is her post that is very impressive and informative, in which she explains the A to Z of this organic red lentil.


Next is “Sweet and spicy enchiladas” by Chris of chrissweetmornings.com, a very healthy, baked dish of black beans and sweet potato filled tortillas with spiced salsa and cheese. This dish sounds and looks very good. I would love to try this full meal recipe. And don't you love the name of the blog, I like witty names, and this is a smart name for a blog!


Next is “Moong sprouts poha” by Saswati of potpourri-saswati.blogspot.in, this is a healthy breakfast option of flattened rice (poha) with sprouts of moong. As she mentions in the post moong beans sprouts are a nutritional powerhouse. This healthy breakfast is a good lunch box option for kids.


The next six recipes were of curries or lentils with gravy, and all have different styles of cooking and varied spices are used which makes each recipe unique.

Next is “spicy black eyed sambhar” by Lisa of food and spice. I have never tried sambhar with blackeyed beans, so I bookmarked it. I think the taste would be awesome with sambhar powder, lots of spices together with red bell pepper and onion. Lisa is a veteran vegetarian, and she also has over 1000 vegetarian, healthy and unique recipes in her blog. Her blog can be a rescue place for people who think or say, “How to cook vegetarian food?”


Next is “lobhiya masala recipe” by jolly home made recipe. This is a typical Punjabi lobhiya curry with ginger, garlic, onion, tomatoes and garam masala. I know this is a very tasty dish because it is made like this in my kitchen as well.


Next recipe of black eyed beans is “Cowpeas gravy” by Raji of rajis island  This is another nice way of cooking these beans in which she first dry roasted the cow peas, this roasting will really give a nice aroma after cooking. In this curry, she uses nice spices with tomato and tamarind, which will give a nice tangy and sour flavour. She used gingelly oil in this recipe, which is a healthy oil, derived from sesame seeds, it is also called sesame seed oil.


Next is “matki ki subji” by Jeena of  jeenas kitchen. This is another very interesting recipe of lentils called moth. In which she sprouted the moth and then made this curry. Awesome combination of spices is used in this curry. And as we all know sprouted beans are a real powerhouse. The moth is a very tasty and nutritious lentil which is brown in colour and round in shape, which is very popular in north India.


Next is “lancashire peas” by onion and paper She shared a very interesting family story of how she got these beans and how she finally cooked and enjoyed this black peas. I really loved this version of cooking the peas.


My mother told me, a long time ago, that black peas are not only a good source of protein, but they also increase the strength of the body after any illness or weakness in the body.

Next is “Palak dal recipe” by Yummy Indian kitchen This is a healthy combination of protein and vegetables, with tamarind. I liked the spices she used for tempering this spinach dal.