Monday, May 17, 2010

Caramel Custard

Caramel Custard is one of the most common desserts made across the globe in exactly the same manner. It is said to have a french origin and was intially called flan. The recipe can be however traced back to the ancient Roman period and there is even a National Caramel Custard Day which is celebrated on October 3rd when Spanish and French households whip out eggs and prepare this dish or the more sweeter version called flan.

Caramel Custard is one of my fav desserts, I like it delicate and not very sweet but with enough caramel oozing out all over :)...

Here is my recipe..


1. Milk – 1 cup

2. Eggs – 2
3. Condensed milk - 1 cup ( same as milk qty)
4. Corn flour – 1 teaspoon
5. Vanilla essence -  1/2 teaspoon
6. Sugar – 2 dessert spoon

For Pudding

Beat the eggs well, first the whites and then the yolks, make it nice and fluffy. The softness of the dessert comes from how well the eggs are beaten. Blend in the condensed milk and continue to mix well. Mix one Tsp milk ( should be at room temperature) with corn flour and make a paste without any lumps. Add this paste to the condensed milk/eggs mixture. Add the remaining milk and vanilla essence. Mix well.
For Caramel

Spread 2-3 dessert spoon of sugar in the caramelising dish. Add some water & caramelise it. When it becomes golden brown colour, take it off from stove. Pour into the pudding dish. This needs to be done immediately as the caramel will cystalize quickly. Pour the pudding and cover the dish with alumunium foil. Pour 2 glasses of water in pressure cooker or any covered cooking vessel. Keep the pudding dish in that & cook for 10 minutes on slow fire after putting the weight. Turn off the gas. Keep the dish in pressure cooker for another 30 – 45 minutes. Once the dish is cooled keep in fridge for 3- 4 hrs.

While serving, reverse it onto the serving plate and serve cold. It goes well with fresh cream or ice cream also.It can be decoarted with choclate syrup or cashews and choco chips...

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Chettinad Chicken

Chettinad Cuisine is the cuisine of the Chettiar's,  one of the hindu castes in southern Tamil Nadu in India. It is said to have originated from Nedungadi  about 600 Km south of Chennai. The cuisine is one of the most spiciest and aromatic Indian cuisines. It uses all variety of spices liberally, but star anise, Black Stone Flower & dried flower pods are the classic trademarks of this cuisines along with ground pepper, dried red chillies and freid coconut.
It mostly goes well with meat, especially chicken, lamb and salted or dried vegetables which are called kulumabu. The curries go well with most Indian staples like steam rice, dosa, roti, paratha & so on..but watch out for the tangy taste and the aroma of spices...
Here is my recipe for Chettinad Chicken curry


1. Chicken – 1 kg (Medium cut, less bones or boneless)

2. Grated coconut – 1 1/2 cup
3. Spices - Poppy seeds – 2 tsp, Fennel seeds(perumjeerakam) – 1 tsp,Coriander seeds – 1 tsp,Jeera – 1/2 tsp,Red chilli – 6-8,Cinnamon stick – 1 medium size piece,Cardamom – 4,Clove – 3,Star anise – 1/2,
4. Ginger -  garlic Paste- 1 tbsp each
5. Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp,Chili powder – 1 tsp
6. Onion Shallots ( Sambhar Onion) - 15- 20 ( sliced)
7. Tomato – 2 medium ( Cut into small pieces)
8. Lemon – 1
9. Curry leaves - the more the merrier ( about 10 leaves) , mustard seeds - 1 tbsp

Clean the chicken and cut into medium size pieces. Marinate the chicken in lime juice, tumeric powder and salt and keep aside for about 20 - 30 mins.
Fry the coconut with number 3 ingredients in oil, till it turn golden brown. Let it cool completely. Do not add water while grinding.This needs to be well ground and a thin film of oil ( from the coconut) will start to appear. 

Heat oil in a bottom heavy pan, splutter the mustard seeds, curry leaves and add sliced shallots and fry it till it becomes golden brown. Add tomato and turmeric and chili powder and mix well. Add salt to taste Add the ground coconut paste and stir it continuously for a few minutes. Once the powders are fried well add chicken pieces, combine well and cook for 10 minutes. Add lemon juice and 2 cups water and cover and cook till the chicken is done. This curry has a thick gravy.

The addition of Tomato and lemon juice is important to reduce the pungent taste of the spices. Serve hot with rice / dosa/ bread / roti and so on...