Monday, September 26, 2016

Spinach Artichoke Dip

Spinach Artichoke Dip 3

Ingredients (Serves 10 - 12):

Butter                       -- 2 tbsp
Olive oil                    -- 2 tbsp
Onion                         -- 1 cup, diced into small pieces
Garlic                         -- 1 tbsp, minced
All purpose Flour -- ½ cup
Heavy Cream          -- 1½ cup
Chicken stock         -- 1 cup
Cajun Spice Blend -- 1 tsp
Sugar                          -- 2 tsp
Hot sauce                  -- 1 tsp
Lemon juice             -- 1 tbsp
Sour cream               -- 1 cup
Cream cheese           -- 8 Oz., softened
Spinach                       -- 1½ lb, frozen
Artichoke Hearts    -- ½ lb.
Parmesan cheese    -- 1 cup,grated
Monterey Jack Cheese -- 1 cup, shredded
Paprika                        -- ½ tbsp

Spinach Artichoke Dip 1


Thaw the spinach to room temperature and drain the the excess moisture. You will end up with 1 lb or more of the thawed/drained spinach.

In a large sauce pan, melt the butter with the olive oil. Add the onion and garlic and saute until they are translucent.Add the flour and mix well. Saute until the flour absorbs all the moisture and starts turning light yellow.

Spinach Artichoke Dip 4

Add the heavy cream and warm chicken stock and using a wire whisk blend the mixture until smooth. Simmer over low heat for 5 - 8 minutes.

Add the Cajun spice blend, sugar, hot sauce, lemon juice, ½ cup of the Parmesan cheese, sour cream, and cream cheese and stir well with a large spoon to incorporate.

Add the spinach and artichoke hearts and mix well with a large spoon, continue to simmer for about 5 minutes.

Transfer to an oven proof dish and then sprinkle the shredded Monterey Jack cheese and then the remaining Parmesan cheese, and then sprinkle the paprika over the top.

Spinach Artichoke Dip5

Heat the dip in a 375ยบ F oven for 30 – 35 minutes, or until cheese is melted and slightly browned on top.

Serve with chips of your choice.

Spinach Artichoke Dip 2

Recipe Courtesy: CajunChef

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Aval Payasam


Ingredients (Serves 3 - 4):

Aval / poha  --  ½ cup
Milk                 --  2 - 3 cups
Sugar              --  ¼ cup
Cashews        --  5 - 6 broken
Raisins           --  5 - 6
Cardamom powder -- a small pinch
Ghee                -- 1 tbsp



In a pan with relatively high walls, heat the ghee. Fry the cashews until golden, drain and keep aside. Then add the raisins and fry until it bloats up.Drain and keep it along with the fried cashews.

To the same pan, add aval/poha and fry for 2 - 3 minutes. Remove and set aside.

Add milk and sugar to the pan and let it boil. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the fried poha and let it cook. Add more milk, if the consistency is too thick.

Switch off the flame and add the fried cashews, raisins and cardamom powder.

Serve hot or cold.


Thursday, September 8, 2016

Kaaya Mulakooshyam

Kaaya Mulakooshyam 2

Ingredients(Serves 4 - 5):

Raw Banana     -- 2 small
Pearl onions    -- 12 - 15
Garlic                 -- 4 - 5, small cloves
Whole pepper corns -- 1½ tsp
Chilly powder -- ½ tsp
Coriander powder -- 2½ tsp
Kudam Puli      --  3 – 4 pieces
Curry leaves    -- 1 sprig
Coconut oil      -- 2 - 3 tsp
Salt                      -- To taste


Soak the kudam puli pieces in a cup of warm water. Keep it aside.

Cut the banana into medium-sized cubes, into a vessel filled with water. Water helps to save the colour of the banana from turning to black / dark.

Heat a heavy bottomed pan. Add chilly powder and coriander powder.Saute for 2 - 3 minutes on low flame. Meanwhile cruch the peppercorns in a mixer. Add the pearl onions and garlic to the mixer and crush all to a coarse mixture. Immediately add this to the pan and saute until the water is evaporated.

Kaaya Mulakooshyam 3

Too much grinding or keeping the ground mixture for a while will induce the bitter taste of the pearl onions.So take care to just crush it and saute it immediately.

Add the kudam puli pieces with the soaked water, few curry leaves, enough salt and bring to a boil. Drain the chopped banana and add to the gravy. Cook until the banana cubes are fully done and the gravy is thick.

Add coconut oil and a few curry leaves. Close with the lid and keep aside for few minutes to help the flavors blend.

Serve hot with rice.

Kaaya Mulakooshyam 1

Recipe Courtesy: YummyOYummy