Author Archives: 156hungerlane

About 156hungerlane

we are 2 individuals who have been best of friends have each other backs have been roomies (the legendary room no. - 156) share the same interests (food, fashion and travel) but want something more than a regular boring life and therefore keep taking on adventures be it in the kitchen or outside join us as we take you along on this journey together sitting out of 2 different parts of the world!

Mughlai Chicken

Mughlai Chicken

156hungerlane_Mughlai Chicken

 

 In a recent office potluck, one of my colleagues had made ‘Mughlai Chicken’. It was really delicious and I was after her for the recipe for a long time. That is when she told me that she has used a very simple recipe that she found in a cookbook shared by her mom-in-law.  

It was a book called ‘The Art of Cooking’ compiled by the housewives of Kuwait. I was so fond of the recipe that I spent 45 mins in front of the printer, scanning each and every page of the book. So when my brother was in town recently, I had the perfect occasion and reason to cook Mughlai Chicken.

As I went through the book, I realized, all housewives are good at one thing – simplifying complicated recipes to simple solutiins that they can use in their daily family cooking 🙂 This was valid for each and every recipe, I found in this book.

You can’t find this book online unless you are in Kuwait. Hence, as I try different recipes from the book, I will continue to share them with you.

For now, enjoy this Mughlai Chicken with your family!

156hungerlane_chicken ingtredients

Method:

  1. Heat oil in a vessel and add bay leaf and broken cardamom.
  2. Add onion and stir fry till light brown
  3. Add ginger and garlic paste and sauté
  4. Add chicken pieces and stir fry on high flame till the water evaporates
  5. Mix yogurt with cashew paste, chilli powder, salt and garam masala.
  6. Add the curd mixture to the chicken, stir fry till the oil leaves the masala.
  7. Cover and cook till done
  8. Add cream and coriander leaves. Mix well and keep on low flame for a minute.
  9. Serve hot!

156hungerlane_kadhai chicken_recipe steps

Enjoy this quick recipe of curry in a hurry!

Cheers,

Nupur

Categories: Indian, Mains | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Grilled Avocado Sandwich

heading

There is a sudden oversupply of avocados in the Singapore Market .  I remember having a tough time in selecting the best from the little basket of raw avocados, pay S$2 for each I picked and wait for over 3-4 days for them to naturally ripen ; Now you see big caskets of  ripened Hass variety of these butter-fruits imported directly from America and thanks to their profusion, they now cost just  S$ 2.75 for 3!!  ( Please don’t judge me!)  Singapore food market relies completely on imports, so prices are decided by the supply. ( I even remember paying S$3.6 /kg for my Indian tomatoes 😐 )

Anyway, I love avocados for its distinct texture & health benefits and now I had an encouraging reason to take them to my kitchen! 🙂 While I was happily choosing my dark spotty Alligator Pear ( that’s what they are called for obvious reasons ) , my brain was churning ideas to effectively use them. As I trotted  further, I entered supermarket’s in-house bakery section and that is when a loaf of herb Focaccia caught my eye. The sound of “Avocado & herb Focaccia Sandwich” sounded both fresh and delicious! So here it goes:

Quick Ingredients:

  • Focaccia Loaf
  • Lettuce
  • 1.5 cups of Guacamole
  • Cheddar Cheese
  • Tomatoes
  • Butter/Olive oil ( to lightly grease the bread)

Avocado Sandwich

I started by making fresh tangy guacamole dip, using the same recipe that we shared with you in our express Mexican platter.  To quickly reiterate I used pulp from 2 medium ripe avocados, one medium onion, one medium tomato, few green chilies ( instead of jalapeno peppers ) , loads of cilantro,  salt and lime to taste.

Guacamole

It takes 5 mins to mins to assemble the sandwich once the guacamole spread is ready ( which in itself is a very quick process).

Avocado Sandwich

Whether to have this sandwich grilled or just raw is completely an individual choice. I like to grill it to make this preparation more interesting. When grilled, the focaccia gets a li’l crisp and adds a new dimension to the otherwise gooey filling of guacamole, tomatoes and cheese.  I lightly brushed the bread with butter spread so it doesn’t become too dry. Olive oil can also be a healthy substitute.

Avocado Sandwich

All set to be Grilled in the oven

Just give it 5 mins in the oven. Alternately, you may choose to toss it on grill pan over a gas stove just enough to make the bread crisp.  You may serve this with extra guacamole and lemon wedge.

The freshness of ingredients is the highlight of this sandwich. Cilantro, chili and Lime add zing to this nutritious meal while cheese and avocado add to the creamy texture.  I made this sandwich for quick breakfast. Its simple, healthy and heavenly!

Avocado Grill

Replacing just a couple of  ingredients, this recipe can be made suitable for our vegan friends. Olive Oil, Vegan Bread and Vegan Cheese are the ingredients that could be incorporated.

To all our working/ bachelor/lazy  friends, who have been requesting us to share some fast and easy health recipes, this quick fix is for you! We hope you’d enjoy it.

Have a munchy weekend!

Ciao!

Team 156, Hungerlane

Categories: Breads, Breakfast, Mains | Tags: , , , , , | 6 Comments

Vegetable Momo: Steamed Dumplings!

Momo_CoverOkay, we agree.. that was one long break that we took! But you have to believe us when we say… our recipe was ready but the weather was not setting the mood for us to pen the blog post down! The scorching heat of Singapore and then the Sumatra haze deterred us from sharing this delectable Momo dumplings recipe that taste doubly sumptuous during monsoon and winter seasons! But now that the Rain Gods have been kind ( in fact it been raining with hail in few parts of Singapore! ), we are ready to finally bring for you the not-to-miss recipe for this season, shared with us all the way from London, by fellow foodie and very dear Ms. Priya Jain. 

PriyaMomo is a type of dumpling native to Nepal but has a Tibetan influence. It is very similar to dim-sums for its simple and subtle taste but the spicy chutney that traditionally accompanies this Nepalese delight , is what sets it apart! Personally speaking, even the thought of Momo dumplings is enough to bring out the flavors on our palette and best reminisces of Delhi Winters. Be it the favorite momo wale bhaiya at the SDA market, or the van at the Tansen Road, momo  dumpling will easily be our favorite Delhi street food after the famous North-Indian chaat!

But, if you are stuck in a place where you do not get traditional momo dumplings or do not get the vegetarian version or both ( like in my case!).. don’t fret no more! Ms. Priya Jain has shared with us this quick and simple recipe that she learnt from her mother-in -law. She tried it to make delicate and beautifully crafted steamed vegetable momo dumplings. She even gave us simple tips and tricks to make them at home without using the traditional momo basket/steamer.

So here’s what she shared:

Momo wrappers:

The dough for the wrappers is made using simple ingredients:

1 cup Plain Flour

1 tsp Oil

Water to knead into “firm” dough. ( Please note it the dough should not be too soft)

Cover the dough and put aside  until you prepare the filling.

Vegetable Momo

The Filling:

Since we are making vegetarian dumplings here, we are using nutritious vegetables and meat substitutes.  Those who wish to try non-veg version can replace the  ingredients of the filling as per their liking. There is no hard and fast rule for the filling-  you can be inventive and surprise your guests!

Here’s what we used, Ingredients:
Grated vegetables like carrot , cabbage, onions
Nutrela small granules (soya nuggets – substitute for chicken) – soaked in warm water, drained and tightly squeezed
Grated cottage cheese (optional)
Oil – 1 tsp
Salt and Garam Masala- To taste
Directions:
Take oil  and sauté all the vegetables for 5-7 mins . Add some garam masala and salt to taste.
Next, add paneer and soya nuggets then sauté it  further for 5 min
Transfer the mixture in a plate an let it cool.
Tasty Tip!
For spicy , schezuan version of momo dumplings:  You may sauté the vegetable mixture ( as above)  in soya sauce , chili sauce and vinegar. Make sure you adjust your salt and spice accordingly.

Momo

Assembling the Momo dumplings:

Now comes the most creative part of the whole make-at-home-momo experience i.e. assembling them!

Here’s a step by step process for the same:

1. Give the resting dough a final knead  and make small spherical dough balls.

2. Dust the work surface with dry flour and roll out the balls into small circles ( around 3 inches ) using  a rolling pin. ( Press the circular edge gently using fingers,this ensures that the middle of the wrapper is slightly thicker than the edges, so when shaped , the  momo dumplings come out evenly in thickness and texture)

3. Take the circular wrapper, put one spoon of filling in the center and hold all edges together towards the center covering the filling, making the pleats and twist the pleats to ensure that the filling is sealed in.

4.  Till you steam the dumplings, please ensure that the resting dough, rolled momo wrappers or shaped momo dumpling are resting on floured surface covered with a bowl. ( This is to make sure they do not stick to the surface or each other, and don’t become too dry)

Momo

Dips and Sauces:

Since basic Momo dumplings have a bland taste ( and we still love them a lot!), the dip accompanying it adds the required zing!   The quintessential momo dip is the red sauce with loads of chili and garlic like a schezuan paste. But, recently we have seen momo stalls even serving creamy mayonnaise along with momos for those who don’t want to go on the spicy route.

Ms. Priya has been very kind to share with us two interesting dips that go along with her steamed momo recipe! – Red & Green. She shared the basic ingredients and recommends us to adjust the quantity and  flavors as per our taste.

1. The Red Chutney  Momo Dip

Ingredients: Dry Red Chilis, Tomatoes, Garlic, some oil and salt to taste.
Directions: Take oil in a pan over medium heat. Put Red Chili and Garlic and saute them till they start releasing the flavors and fragrance. Now, add roughly chopped  tomatoes and salt. Let it simmer till the tomatoes start leaving oil on the sides.
Cool the mixture and grind it into thick paste and the chutney is done.
 2. The Green Chutney
Ingredients:  Green chilis, Ginger , Garlic, Mint Leaves, Coriander Leaves , Lemon, Raw Mango,  Cumin (jeera) powder and salt to taste.
Directions: Add everything except the lemon in a mixer and grind into a paste. Squeeze lemon on the top and serve fresh.
Both of these chutneys have fresh aroma but unique tastes that make them a great accompaniment to the otherwise bland  momo dumplings!

 

Steaming the dumplings:

The last step before you get to enjoy these delicious vegetable delight is- Steaming them!

Traditionally momo dumplings are steamed in the momo baskets but due to their small size , they have been replaced by large stacked aluminium steamers for commercial purposes!

The idea is to steam the dumplings  in a  double boiler arrangement. Take  large and deep pan and fill it with water up-till about 2 inches from the base and let the water boil.  The other container/plate on which dumplings need to be arranged should have holes/slits for the steam to reach the momo.  This pan is then made to rest over the boiling water in a way that it doesn’t come in contact with the water (using a stand/ring). The entire double boiler arrangement should  ideally be covered  to ensure  that the steam gets trapped  inside to cook the momo dumplings well.

Ms. Priya used her interesting traditional bamboo basket and put it inside the big container for steaming. She also gave us few easily available steamer substitutes:

For main container –  Idli Steamer  ( generally available in Indian Kitchens), Pressure cooker without the whistle, Rice cooker or any deep pan with heavy lid that loosely traps the steam can be used.

To replace momo stand – Any flat plate with small holes ( generally used in the kitchen to cover food), flat based Sieve or Channi ( it has holes and basic round ones can fit into most of the containers) should work well.

Directions: Irrespective of what you use, the basic steps ( as depicted in the pic below) shall remain the same.  Prepare momo plate well by greasing it with oil so the dumplings do not stick to the surface. Arrange the dumplings at a little distance from each other. Cover and let it Steam for about 10-15 mins. Enjoy  the momo dumplings hot and steaming with delicious chutneys!

Momo

 

Hope this gives you a good idea about how to make this delectable delights in your kitchen.  The process might sound a li’l long drawn but when you do these steps parallely it can really be made in a jiffy( prepare chutney in advance,  let the filling cook alongside while you knead the dough, put water to boil in the steamer when you are shaping the dumplings). Believe us,  in the end, they are really worth it!

So, it is time you  give those deep fried pakodas, a break; on the next drizzly day enjoy these delicate steamed momo dumplings that would tantalize your taste buds and comfort your soul!

Momo

We again thank Ms. Priya and her MIL  for sharing such an interesting recipe and wonderful pictures with us. We look forward to such entries where not only the guests and their recipes but also the pictures help us in weaving the stories! 

Enjoy the monsoon season and keep sharing!

Cheers,

Team 156Hungerlane

Categories: Entree, Sauces | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Mommy’s Chocolate Fudge!

It’s mother’s day today and how lucky are we to have a mom’s recipe for a delicious chocolate fudge with a modern day twist from her daughter :).

Thank you Nimisha for sharing this hot favorite family recipe and your sweet story behind this wonderful dessert!

Guys, This is how you rock a chocolate fudge 🙂

156hungerlane_chocolate story

 

Ingredients:

  1. Condensed Milk ( one tin – 400 grams)
  2. Dark Chocolate (1 bar – 100 gms) ( I recommend 70% and above Lindt Dark Chocolate)
  3. Walnuts: 6-7
  4. Roasted Almonds: 10-12

156hungerlane_chocolate fudge_ingredient

Recipe:

  • In a pan, heat the chocolate until it melts completely
  • Add the condensed milk and keep stirring to avoid lumps
  • Add crushed roasted almonds and walnuts (for roasted almonds take almonds in a bowl and add a generous pat of butter and microwave for 2 minutes)
  • Keep stirring for about 1 minute ; the condensed milk and chocolate would now begin to solidify, cook on low flame for next 5 minutes
  • Take it off the pan in a bowl
  • Let it cool and freeze (for instant cooling)

156hungerlane_recipe_fudge

Remember, the chocolate would remain in a semi solid state all the time – nothing would really freeze!

Enjoy eating this sinful chocolate fudge cold or at room temperature.

Substitutes of the Lindt are cocoa powder or cooking chocolate (and about 50 gms butter)

We wish all the lovely mother’s a very Happy Mother’s Day!

Love,

Nimisha, Rashi & Nupur

Categories: Desserts | Tags: , , , , , | 4 Comments

The Quintessential Apple Pie

A rainy evening in Singapore, I sat curled up on the favorite spot of our studio – the couch by the wall sized window that paints lush green Apple Piegardens, wide skies and high-rise buildings together in a single view! (Apart from the kitchen, this is where I spend most of my time ..well, that is when I am at home! 😉 ) Coming back, it was a rainy evening,  I felt as snug as a bug in a rug lying on my couch , sipping hot coffee and watching a chick flick – “Waitress”. With a rating of  7.1 on IMDb, for all those who are interested, Waitress is a comedy drama about life and dreams of a woman who works at a pie diner.

What appealed me the most about the movie? The frames that captures interesting pies that protagonist Keri Russell bakes in her head depending on her state of mind. She even names them accordingly – “I hate my husband Pie” or “All in love Pie”! It does sound a li’l silly but subtly it did make me realize that more often than not, even the menu in my kitchen decided by my temperament . ( Does that happen you as well?)

Somewhere, somehow, while watching the movie, the image of the primmed and trimmed criss-cross pie got stuck in my head.  I started wondering that I had tasted it so many times at different places before but why didn’t I try it till now? Is it too difficult? Does it require special tools? Are the ingredients too hard to fetch? Can it be made without eggs? The questions were endless but needed to be answered!

Three days of research and googlearning later,  I realized that the ingredients and tools needed for the Apple Pie were as simple as they could be. In-fact almost everything required was available in my kitchen shelves and yes, the flaky pastry crust as required for the pie could be made without using any eggs… Whoa, I was inspired and as ready as ever! What are we waiting for?

So, here’s to my first Pie with the criss cross or lattice top and  I would like to call it ” Pie-Oh-My”!

Here is the list of  Simple Ingredients that I used:Apple Pie

Flour – 2 cups
Butter – 125 gms
Baking powder – 3/4th tsp
Apples – 3 medium (you may choose any kind or can
even mix different varieties of apples)
Spices ( Cinnamon Powder+ Nutmeg Powder) – 1 tsp
Sugar ( preferably brown and ground)-  3/4th of a cup  ( or adjust to taste)
Lemon juice – 1 tsp 
Corn Starch – 1 and 1/2 tsp
Ice Cold Water –  a little over 2 cups
 
 
 
The Process:

Frankly, from the very beginning, I could not wait to start arranging the lattice dough strips on the pie, but clearly, that wouldn’t have been possible till I completed the two main steps – To begin with, knead the pastry dough and then marinate the apples, both of which require some time and patience.

 CRUST of the PIE:

1. Cut 100 gms of butter in small cubes and put it to chill in the freezer for at-least 15 mins soaked in 2 cups ice-cold water.

2. Sift 2 cups of flour and add 2 tbsp ground sugar and 1 tsp baking powder together

3. Now , add hardened butter cubes and start cutting them through the dry flour mixture using forks . The idea is to have grainy butter pieces coated well with the flour mixture,  if it’s too hot in your kitchen and you feel that the butter getting too soft , refrigerate it for sometime and/or move to a aircon cooled room. Do whatever it takes to get a grainy dough. ( It is the coarse butter granules between in the dough that make the Pie Crust flaky!)

4. Once you reach that stage, bind the dough using ice-cold water. Put half tsp at a time. The idea is to use as little water as possible, so that the resultant dough is firm and non-smooth. ( Refer to the picture below) Try not to use too much of hands/pressure in the dough kneading process or the butter would melt due to the body heat through your palms.

“A pie dough comes together exactly like a biscuit only there is very, very little liquid and no leavening involved. Other than that, the same rules apply. My best advice: handle the dough as little as possible. “     -Alton Brown 

5. Cover the dough in cling kitchen wrap and put it to refrigerate in the freezer for about 20-25 mins ( ensuring any softened butter gets firm before the rolling process).

Pie Dough

MARINATE the APPLES:

1. Peel and de-seed the apples and cut them into thin and small bite sizes.

2. Sprinkle the cinnamon and nutmeg powder, remaining sugar and 1 tsp of lemon juice. Toss Gently and let them sit for over 15 mins.

3. Transfer the apples into a sieve resting over an empty bowl for about 30-45 mins. The bowl will collect the juice from the softened apples.

4. Mix the corn starch over the collected juice and thicken it in the microwave for about 15 secs, mix it back to the apples.

5. The  softened apple filling is ready to be poured into the pastry crust.

Apple _Marinate

 ROLL out:

The crust might get a little hard when you remove it from the refrigerator but as you start lightly kneading it, it would get easy to manage. The dough should ideally be firm and elastic ; you have to use it before the butter gets too soft and  consequently  makes the dough sticky. 

1. Divide the dough into two parts and by the time you are rolling one, keep the other back in the fridge

2. Take a clean flat surface and lightly flour it. Roll out the dough into circle of a size bigger than your pie baking mould,  this measurement makes pie of size 8″ diameter.

3. Care should be taken that the pie crust doesn’t stick/break, if it is becoming unmanageable then you can roll out the dough by placing it in between sheets of cling wraps, by doing so it can be easily transferred to the baking dish.

4.  Lightly grease the baking dish with butter and dust some flour.

5. Roll  the flattened pie on the rolling-pin and roll it out on the baking dish; Firmly press it while sticking the pastry dough neatly to the sides of the bakeware

6. Roll out the other remaining  dough from the fridge and cut it into thin stripes – approx width of 3/4 th inches

Apple Pie Hungerlane

 ARRANGING the LATTICE TOP:

Finally comes the most interesting and creative part of the whole process, the pie top arrangement. You can make pie open-faced, with a full top, or half-open like a lattice top. We used the lattice top crust as it not only looks pretty but also  provides heat insulation to the fruit and does not let them become too caramelized. For big pies , the double crust ( top and bottom) works better as it gives every piece a perfect wedge shape and the filling remains neatly sealed in.

Steps to weave your Lattice Pie:

1.   Being excited and impetuous, I took the shortest way started by arranging the strips parallely at a small distance from each other in one direction. ( Needless to say, the longest strip should cut through the center and ends of all the strips should reach till the edge of the pie crust)

2.  Next, I started arranging another set of strips, perpendicular to the previous arrangement starting from one end. The only difference was this time I put one strip  at a time and I alternately put it over and under the existing arrangement, creating a criss cross weave.

 3.  Cut the excess strip ends hanging from the sides after leaving some margin. Now tuck the strip ends neatly into the edge of the bottom crust.

4. You can now create a crimping effect on the edges by using your thumb and index fingers. If you are using a crimped pie plate, you will have to just press the edges firmly on to the crimped circumference.

Just like that you are done!

Tip! If the process above  took sometime and you feel the butter of the crust might have got softened.  Refrigerate the pie  for 10 mins before baking.

Pie_arrangement

BAKING  the PIE

1. Brush the crust with a little butter and/or milk mixture to get a brown glaze. Put it into preheated oven at 250 degrees C for over 1 hour.

2. Since I have an oven with double rod options, I let the base cook on the bottom rod for over 30 mins before putting on the top ( and consequently both) rod on. This ensures that the pie doesn’t over brown. ( If you do not have that option, you may choose to put an aluminium foil around the edge of the pie to keep it from turning too brown and remove it towards the last 15 mins. )

3.  The apple filling bubbles up and the liquid might ooze out of the pie during baking, to avoid spoiling your oven’s surface, keep a tray or a flat plate below the pie bakeware. Keep an eye on your pie, checking  in between while letting it cook slowly.

Eggless_Pie_hungerlane

Serve: Let the Pie sit for around 1-2 hours on the cooling rack, before you serve it…Believe me, it would be definitely worth the wait!

Pie_Crust

I took few shots while waiting for it to  cool down. These are few of the many.  Hope these encourage you to try one for yourself!

Pie_side

Pie_Edge

Eggless Apple Pie

Well, I hope you loved the “Pie – oh -my!”  It might be a little  long drawn and time-consuming process but it uses simple ingredients and is worth every effort you put in! Well if you don’t  trust me on this, let me give another try as I close this post and convince you by quoting a small except from a poem written by a famous American writer :

“But I, when I undress me
Each night, upon my knees
Will ask the Lord to bless me
With apple-pie and cheese!”

                                                                – Eugene Field

Let us know if have any questions relating to this recipe, &  if you do try it, please share the pics with us at 156hungerlane@gmail.com.

Cheers,

Rashi

Categories: Mains | Tags: , , , , | 19 Comments

Project Femina: Journey to a Milestone

Most of you have been asking us about how all of this really happened…Here is the full scoop to our cover story.

Well, it all started in January this year, when our dear friend, Divya Yadav (who is also the owner of a  fabulous website called “Miss Enchanted”) shared with us a tweet from Femina that read – “Food blog? or No blog? Tweet us your blog’s url / Send your recipes to thefeminawoman@gmail.com. You could feature in Femina #MyAceRecipe”. ( Thanks a lot Divya , for bringing in this opportunity)

Stage 1: Submitting our blog!

At this point, we had no clue that the editors at Femina were coming out with a crowd-sourced issue, but even an opportunity to share our blog with a brand name as big as Femina was hard-to miss. So a week later (blame it on our habit to procrastinate) , we shared a short write-up along with our story, our blog and links to few of our popular recipes with them. To be honest with you all, considering the popularity of the magazine and the number of recipes they would have received, we weren’t counting our chickens early. But we were confident that if it was a contest, our little creativity and passion as showcased through the blog, would take us at least to the top 20.

Stage 2: Great News! We are selected 🙂

Then came February, more than three weeks had passed since we wrote to the magazine and we had conveniently forgotten about it. Actually,Valentine’s day’s special menu at 156, Hungerlane kept us too occupied to follow-up . Shortly after Valentine’s day, we both reached home after our respective globe-trotting trips, checked our mail and whoa! Sitting patiently in our inbox was a congratulatory email from Femina sharing the big news! We had made it to the top 6 and had been selected to feature in Femina’s April edition! It was  already February 18th, so things needed to move quickly from there.

Femina

Brief to the Recipe Section

We signed a contract and sent 4 of our original recipes for the editors to choose from. They chose our  “Homemade Pesto Pizza with Oven Dried Tomatoes” recipe and just like that, we were on board! Next, we were scheduled to attend a meeting with the editors and fellow writers. Wow…. “Editors Meeting and all”… things had started to get exciting! Everyone selected was invited to Femina’s Mumbai office. For people like us, who were not from Mumbai, arrangement for an online hangout session was made.

We had a  hangout session on 25th February and were really excited to meet the editor and other authors of the prospective articles in the magazine. Believe us, both of us were equally happy to see each other, as we haven’t met in person since this blog has started. All recent skype sessions have always been about 156Hungerlane, but this one was different. It was  huge!

Femina

Hangout Credits in the Magazine, Img Source: Pg 192, Femina, Apr 17, 2013

Coming back,  it was in this meeting that we got to know more about the issue. It was Femina’s first crowd sourced issue through which it mobilized avid women readers from across the length and breadth of the nation, encouraging them to write for the magazine. The hangout session marked the first meet and greet platform for all those who had made it to this stage. It was a delight to be in room full of happy faces, all excited and eager for events to unfold. We were given an outline of the “made by you” issue. There were prospects of some interesting articles featuring the women of today and how they have used social media to build a career for themselves. This discussion made us look forward to reading articles written by fellow authors as well.

We were able to find the video of  the hangout session in one of interesting articles written about Made by You. The link is here!

Next few days saw quick email exchanges.  We were asked to mail our pictures to be posted along with the recipe. It was a mammoth task to select the best! ( We both had a skype session for this too :P). Our pictures were coming along with our recipe, so,we had to ensure that we looked at least as fresh as our Pizza 😛

Stage 3: The legendary Photoshoot!

As we were thinking about refining our recipe and sharing our story with the readers, we were hit with a bigger news! Femina decided to feature all the guest authors on its COVER PAGE!! Whoaaa… It took both of us some time to register what had happened and that’s not all.. we could see a photo shoot on the way as we were given photo specifications, one of them being- to  dress in white and blue.

Next couple of days were exciting for us and stressful for our husbands as they had to help us find the best white top for this photo-shoot and also be the men behind the camera ensuring that we look thin and pretty in the pictures they click! 🙂 Considering how picky women can be, this was a tough task!  (We’d like to take this moment to Thank our respective husbands for being so patient and kind towards us, here & otherwise! ;))

So, hundreds of photographs and multiple rounds of selection and rejections later, we finally picked our top 3 and sent them to the editor. Now we were most excited as we had sent all the material we could and had to patiently wait for the launch. Since everyone in our families had helped in selecting the photographs, they were thrilled too!

Stage 4: Femina is out.. On stands NOW! (You can find the recipe on pg175)

Femina

Cover Focus

So over the past few weeks, we have had some sleepless nights in anticipation and excitement of reaching out to a far wider audience.. and it finally happened ! Femina’s first ever crowd sourced issue was published and it featured our very own blog, – 156, Hungerlane.

A bigger moment was to see our photographs make it to FEMINA’s COVER PAGE! In less than a year, this is a big achievement for us and it wouldn’t have been possible without the support and encouragement we got from all of you!

Femina

Cover Page, Femina Edition Apr 17, 2013 | Image Source: Femina Facebook page

Femina

Image Source: Page 175, Femina Issue, April 17, 2013

We would like to thank our readers, our families, friends and most importantly,our spouses for supporting us, encouraging us and making us look beautiful as we stand tall on the cover page of a magazine that is loved by every  Indian woman. Here’s a big thanks to Femina!

Until next time…

Cheers,

Rashi & Nupur

Categories: Mains | 1 Comment

Express Mexican Platter

mexican_header

We are back after celebrating the colorful festival of Holi and gorging on equally colorful food menu that we have been sharing with you! Don’t we just love  these festivals, they push us out of our mundane routine while bringing around so much euphoria and enthusiasm.  This time the celebrations were elongated by the long Easter weekend that followed.. Believe me, I have been thinking of sharing this blog post since the Good Friday but lazy mornings followed by eventful evenings have been keeping me away from doing so!  Anyway, finally we are here and to compensate for our absence , we are excited to introduce a whole new dimension to our widespread blog menu – The Tex- Mex Express! The inclination to try Mexican cuisine came when our close friends and fellow bloggers- Neha and Mridul shared with us the recipe to the Guacamole Dip on their blog. While their blog post was enough to plant the idea of trying Mexican cuisine in my head, the recent visit to two interesting Mexican restaurants in Singapore – Cha Cha Cha and Viva Mexico just pushed me further into  trying the extended Tex-Mex platter at home!

Tex-Mex is often used to describe a localized version of Mexican cuisine ( and even uses ingredients that are not generally used in traditional Mexican preparation). So, today, we will share with you the recipe for “quick” Tex-Mex platter using simple, easy to find ingredients!  The items on platter require minimum cooking and use of very little oil…. Hope this makes this post all the more exciting for you! 🙂

So, this is what our platter looks like:

Mex Platter

We tried three famous dips that generally accompany the Mexican mains :
1. Guacamole ( that uses Avocado as the main ingredient)
2. Chunky Salsa ( Fresh dip made of tomato chunks!)
3. Sour Cream 
 
Apart from this we tried the vegetable Quesadillas and baked Nacho Chips!
 
The Dips:
 

1. Guacamole

Guacamole is made by mashing ripe avocados and adding few condiments that make it more interesting. Avocados become smooth and creamy when mashed and are often used to replace butter in vegan preparations!. They have very mild yet unique taste, and therefore care should be taken that condiments added do not overpower its distinct flavor.

Guacamole

Directions:

– Take ripe Avocados (one with dark firm shell but they should yield to pressure when pressed hard), deseed them, scoop out the avocado pulp into a bowl and mash it using a fork. Note- Keep the seed aside and do not throw it away, 😕 we will shortly* tell you why.

– For one Avocado, add 3 tbsp spring onions/ red onions,  1 tbsp minced jalapenos, loads of chopped coriander, half a  lime and kosher salt to taste.  You may use green pepper sauce/tobasco if you do not find jalapenos, also the kosher salt may be replaced by rock salt.

– Some people add tomatoes to the Guacamole, but we are not too happy about the idea, the water from the tomatoes doesn’t quite mix that well with rich, creamy avocado texture! You may chose to top the Guacamole with fresh tomatoes just before serving instead.. its  completely your choice! 🙂

Mix everything well and fold in all the ingredients.  [ Handy Tip-  The Guacamole tends to oxidize and turn brown within sometime. To prevent this, ensure that you scrape off the greenest portion next to the peel, add lime juice right in the beginning and insert the avocado *seed in the guacamole until you are ready to serve it. It is said that the avocado seed prevents the guacamole from turning brown]Guacamole

2. Chunky Salsa

Salsa is Spanish term for “Sauce” and is also a famous Mexican dip. Tomatoes are the main ingredients for Mexican salsa preparation. Nowdays, the prepacked salsa jars are easily available at almost all general stores with variations in the amount of spice/heat. While the prepacked salsa have a thick paste consistency, what we tried was a lot chunkier.. almost like a Salsa Salad!

Salsa Dip

For our Chunky Salsa we need:

Medium Firm Tomatoes – 2
Small Onion-1
Capsicum – 1/3 rd
Jalapenos/Green Chilies- to taste 
Coriander Leaves – one small bunch
Fresh Mint Leaves- handful
Oregano- 1 tsp
Minced Garlic – 1 clove
Big Lime – 1  
Cumin Powder- 1/2 tsp
Salt – to taste
Sugar- if required
 

Directions:

Chop all the ingredients, you don’t have to cut them too fine or the Chunk of our Chunky Salsa would get lost 😉

It is advised to de-seed the jalapenos and green chilies before you mince them , we do not prefer the seeds for two reasons –  they would make it difficult for us to control the heat of the salsa and since they are  thick-difficult-to-chew, they  do not really do justice to this otherwise fresh tender salsa!

Toss all the ingredients well in a large bowl , you may adjust the flavors especially of salt, lime and heat as per your taste. Sometimes, the tomatoes are too sour which we do not really prefer, we add some sugar to balance the sourness of the tomatoes in such case. It’s completely up to you to how you want your salsa – with sugar or without!

Cover the bowl with a cling wrap, and let it refrigerate for at least 30-40 mins.. why? A. Because you would love this dip chilled! B. The salt and lime together make all the ingredients to release their flavors and come together for this lip smacking concoction! The freshness of mint, coriander and oregano gives kick to the palette in every bite! This fresh, raw salsa can be a great accompaniment to endless dishes.. Try it today!

3. Sour Cream

Sour cream is a cream that has been naturally soured by lactic-acid bacteria. It tastes just like it sounds, creamy yet sour. It’s both delicious and fattening at the same time. Sour Cream makes a great accompaniment to fried potato snacks like wedges, Rosti, baked hash etc.  It even goes wonderfully well with Mexican preparations like tortilla chips, enchiladas, burritos. Sour Cream should ideally be added to any preparation after it has been cooked, so sour cream retains its natural creamy texture!

Directions:

Mix half cup of hung plain yogurt (drain all water by hanging in cheesecloth) with half cup of heavy cream [ ideally it should be 3 tablespoons of yogurt for a cup of cream, but I find half-half a little more healthy ;), you may use any proportion according to your preference].  I am sometimes tempted to use it as it is, right after it has been mixed but ideally, you should let it stand (out in the heat) in a glass container for at least 6-8 hours and then refrigerate.  The bacteria from the curd would sour the cream and the fermentation process would make it heavy. Check the appearance. We are looking for white cream and a creamy, smooth consistency with a characteristic tangy smell.

I learnt this half-half process to make sour cream at home from my sister. This method is not just quick and delicious but also less fattening than the sour cream prepared by other means. Make it in advance and store it in a clean container ( for upto 2-3  days) in fridge for quick use.

Baked Nachos

Baked Nachos

Baked Nachos are as fat-free and  simple as they sound. To make these healthy and express Chips at home, just get any ready-made tortilla wraps. You can use the flavored wraps for a little twist in your chips.

I used the Spinach Tortilla wraps to make  these chips more “healthy”.

Directions:

Cut the Tortilla wraps into desired shapes.

Grease the baking tray with little olive oil and spread the tortilla chips on them properly.

Sprinkle little cumin, cayenne pepper and red chili powder and let them bake till they are golden brown. Caution –  In some cases, it’s better to sprinkle the spices after baking to prevent them from turning brown.  You may take a call accordingly.

Just like that you baked yourself these express and healthy Nacho chips that will go deliciously well with the dips mentioned above!

Express Quesadillas

Quesadillas

Quesadillas, as a dish originated in Mexico. The name is derived from combination of  tortilla and the Spanish word for cheese queso. It is made by folding tortillas after   filling  them with any kind of stuffing and cheese.

Directions:

I used the spinach tortillas again for this recipe ( one pack had 8, and I intelligently used all of ’em).

You can really experiment with what filling you wish to make. I used shredded mozzarella cheese along with vegetable filling (made from tomatoes, spinach,capsicum and onions and seasoned with cumin powder, chili powder and tobasco!) I cooked the filling on a hot skillet with very little olive oil to remove the rawness of the ingredients.

Once the filling is ready, sprinkle little olive oil on a flat non stick griddle, put cheese and filling mixture on one-half of the tortilla wrap, fold it and cook on a slow flame from both sides. The cheese would melt and bind the filling inside the wraps well , making it easier for us to gorge on these crisp, cheesy quesadillas! Cut the quesadillas to make them easier to hold. Serve hot and the cheese shall melt right in your mouth! 😀

Quesadillas

If not the entire, I really hope , we at-least got you are tempted to try few of the express tex-mex preparations we shared with you today. Do let us know how did they come out , share back with us through comments below, our Facebook page or even on our mail 156hungerlane@gmail.com

Recently, we have been really looking forward to something exciting that might just happen for Hungerlane ! We can’t wait to share it with you and shall do it you as soon as we receive a confirmation. 🙂

Till then, keep cooking , sharing and of course, gorging on that good-looking delicious food!

Cheers!

Rashi

 
Categories: Breads, Mains | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Holi Special – Ram Laddoo

156hungerlane_Ram Ladoo_Recipe

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Holi Special – Fruit Sandesh!

Hi All,

Ruchika Jindal shared with us her mom’s tried & tested recipe to make Fruit Sandesh. In quick and easy steps, she shares how to make sandesh using pineapples, oranges and grapes instead of the conventional mangoes. The festival of colors seems to be an ideal occasion to treat your family and friends with these fresh and colorful home-made sandesh! We thank her for sharing this recipe at just the right time! 🙂156hungerlane_Fruit Sandesh

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Holi Special – Palak Paneer with Beetroot Paranthas ( Homemade Cottage Cheese in Spinach Gravy served with Beetroot Bread)

So this new year, I decided to make a resolution to eat healthy and the first thing that came to mind was to add more greens in our diet and what could be more green that spinach, right ? 🙂  It is also the most difficult thing to feed kids and adults alike, my husband being one of them!.

So, I decided to make something Indian where spinach is cooked down and is not in its leafy form – the evergreen, Palak Paneer and to give it a twist of taste and make it more healthy, I served it with Beetroot Paranthas.

This leafy green is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A, magnesium, folate, manganese, iron, calcium, vitamin C, vitamin B2, potassium, vitamin B6 and dietary fiber… phew!! This recipe is a very popular dish in North India and one that has many variations to it. This one however, is the greenest, healthiest and tastiest of them all… Read on and you will know why.. Here is what you will need.

156hungerlane_palak paneer_ingredients

Palak Paneeer!

Greener!

  • Start by blanching the spinach leaves. In order to blanch them, boil some water in a deep dish and add the spinach leaves. Leave them to boil for 2-3 minutes. Immediately remove them from the heat and drain the water. Refresh the leaves immediately in cold water. This was help you retain their green color. Grind the spinach along with the green chlles  in a blender to form a puree.

156hungerlane_greener

Healthier!

  • Take 2 tbsp oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds and wait till they crackle. Now add all the chopped garlic and sliced onion. This makes this dish really healthy. Garlic promotes the well-being of the heart and immune systems with antioxidant properties and helps maintain healthy blood circulation. One of garlic’s most potent health benefits includes the ability to enhance the body’s immune cell activity.

Tastier!

  • Once the garlic and onions turn lightly brown, add the spices – turmeric, coriander, ginger powder, salt to taste. Saute for another minute, lower the flame and add the curd. If you have ROCK SALT, add that along with the regular salt. It gives great flavour to the dish. Now add the spinach puree and cook for a few minutes. Add the cottage cheese cut in small cubes and serve hot!

156hungerlane_Tastier

You can also add a dash of cream to your spinach gravy to make it rich. Since this was the healthier version, I refrained from adding any!

156hungerlane_Palak Paneer

Beetroot Paranthas!

156hungerlane_Beetroot Paranthas

Note: While making the dough for the Beetroot paranthas, the amount of flour required per beetroot can vary with the size of the beetroot you are using. Adjust the amount of flour accordingly. You don’t necessarily need to follow my measurements, just follow the ingredients 🙂

Try this recipe this holi and treat your guests to a colorful meal 🙂

Enjoy!

Nupur

Categories: Mains | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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