Friday, May 11, 2018

Pomegranate Mojito Mocktail Recipe

The days are getting hotter over here in our neck of the woods. We do get rains from time to time as being a tropical country Malaysia, it always rains here. There are two season only here, rainy and summer and each has its own beauty. Summer means we need to keep re-hydrating with drinking plenty of fluids and having light meals as well. When I last went to our local vegetable market, I saw pomegranate, so couldn’t stop myself from picking some for our daily usage. However, I soon realized they are little sour. But I needed to use them anyhow. 

This mojito mocktail recipe comes handy in this case, it’s such a refreshing non-alcoholic drink on a hot summer evening. I really like to unwind myself with a glass of cool pomegranate mojito and a book with me or catch up with dear daughter when she comes back from her school in the evening.
Now to the recipe
Pomegranate Mojito Mocktail Recipe
Recipe requirements ( serve-1)
  • 1 fresh Pomegranate
  • 2 tbs of fresh lemon juice
  • 2-3 tsp of sugar or honey as sweetener
  • About half a can of Sprite or 150 ml roughly
  • 2 tsp of freshly grated ginger

  • Cut pomegranate into half. With the help of hand juicer, squeeze out fresh pomegranate juice.
  • Squeeze out excess juice from seeds. Discard seeds.
  • Now in a mixer, blend lemon and pomegranate juice, sugar and lemon juice well.
  • Add in freshly grated ginger into the mixture.
  • Put this mixture for refrigeration about 2-3 hrs. It will be nice if you can do this overnight.
  • At the time of serving, fill in the serving glass with ice cubes as desired.
  • Pour this pomegranate juice mix in to serving glasses.
  • Now pour Sprite slowly from one side of the glass and give 1-2 stir with a stirrer. Serve immediately.
  • This recipe is for 1 glass or 1 serving only. Increase the quantities for 4-5 people as required.
  • Serve chilled. You can spike it with rum in place of sprite.This is the virgin Mojito version with out any alcohol.

You all have a relaxing weekend and happy cooking.

Friday, May 4, 2018

Best places to eat in Kuala Lumpur- for family

We have lived in Kuala Lumpur for two years now. It seems like yesterday, when we arrived fresh in Kuala Lumpur with no clues how the city will greet us. We were still adjusting to the new routines here in our host country, exploring local vegetable markets and grocers simultaneously. It was not like easy cake-walk for us, but slowly and gradually we got a hang of this city and its people. With so many varieties of cuisine here, Kuala Lumpur is a foodie’s paradise. Its Malay , Chinese and Indian population makes this city such a thriving and lively place to be in.The cosmopolitan nature of this city means you can easily find high end eating joints at one side and on other side, local small vendors who home-cook food daily, start their small and convenient food-stalls during lunch and dinner hours and sell their home-cooked food. This contrast makes it even more interesting and enticing. We as a family don’t go out often during weekdays. But once a weekend, we do try eating out as it gives me a break from my daily cooking spree. I was thinking to write about Kuala Lumpur's food world, but I refrain myself from doing it from these past years, as I needed some experiences before I could write about this topic.
Here is our list of eating out .The criteria of all these places is one thing-family eating out, where they can sit , have a pleasant talk , spent some time and eat delicious food.If you happen to shop in Shopping mall , there are plenty of eating places one can go and eat.
I have listed good restaurants, local food places(some on a budget) and places where you can grab a bite and do take-aways as well, their food outlets as well.
Now to the list-

      Pappa Rich – Bangsar, Mid Valley Garden mall – tried the breakfast menu thick roti steam with butter+Kaya...…chicken satay , black pepper chicken siew mai , nasi lemak  with curry chicken, Char Kway Teo , Asam Laksa, Curry Laksa, Prawn mee ( my favourite), Ipoh Kway Teo soup with prawn and chicken slices,Hainan steamed rice chicken, Dessert-Cendol and drinks – coolers and iced beverages.Price-$$

      Chilies- 1 Utama, mid valley megamall- Mexican cuisine...Cajun chicken sandwich, Cajun pasta , prawn scampi pasta , Rancharo chicken tacos, Grilled chicken fajita trio( served with 3 flour tortilla + sour cream+Guacomole+salsa+pico de gello , all you need is to make your own fajita and relish) chicken enchilada,  Chipotle chicken fresh bowl ( Tex-mix), watermelon Margarita ( cocktail- those who prefer little spiked Tequila drinks) , classic Mojito, Bloody Mary etc and  I would rather go for Virgin Pomegranate Mojito( alcohol free) or watermelon juice, mango fizz, strawberry lemonade.…..they cater to specific food habits also , like we got chicken quesadilla in place of beef quesadilla as requested.Price-$$$

      Marco creative cuisine - 1 utama shopping mall – fine dining –Their pasta recipes - and dessert...creme brulee with white chocolate sherbet are worth it...Price-$$$$

I  dare you to try their squid ink Japonica rice. Anyone!!

   Mikey’s original New York pizza – mid valley megamall. We tried their Loco Mexican Pizza and chicken parmigiana. The view is also nice over there. You can eat and get to see people all across the shopping mall.Price-$$$
      Breakfast/ Brunch/ High Tea at Corus Hotel – The choice of brunch or high tea recipes are ample over here. A nice and fine dining 4 star hotel. For a nice brunch get-together they have Dondang Sayang Coffee house which serves all day along. The choices are varied – from continental to local Malay cuisine. The ambience is nice and warm. If you like to eat food in a good ambience and in relaxed way, suggest to have weekend High-tea there.Price-$$$$

  Pulp at Papa Palheta- Bangsar for coffee break. 

Their Hot chocolate is also delicious. I have written a review about this place as well here.Price-$$

     Secret recipe – what not to like about it. You can choose variety of pastries. Chicken satay ( Malaysian favourite recipe) , Thai style fried rice, Noodles in tom yum soup, curry laksa, Special seafood Mee Mamak ( Malaysian recipe) , it has good western menu choices as well and their pasta recipes are also worth trying – Pasta Arrabiata spaghetti , spicy seafood pasta medley and lasagne just to name a few are worth trying it.Price-$$

And the absolutely delicious dessert ( array of cakes and pastries- black forest, double chocolate pastry, chocolate brulee,capachino cheese  etc.) . 
Venue- the Midvalley shopping mall and Sunway Pyramid mall. They have branches all across Malaysia and also in Singapore, Indonesia and Thailand.

     Sri Nirvana Maju Banana Leaf – Bangsar – Kuala Lumpur food arena is not complete if you don’t go to these local banana leaf restaurants. Why they are called banana leaf, well food is served over banana leaf, what else. This is a traditional South- Indian food fair to be precise. Two varieties of vegetarian recipe dhal, then followed by non-vegetarian dish, dessert, drinks and poppadum. You can fill your tummy and heart both.Price-$$
     Rasa Uttara – Mid valley shopping mall – local Malay cuisine. We have liked their Nasi Goreng.Specially Ayam Rendang Uttara , Ayam Kari Kaptan.Price-$$

  ChatterBox – 1 utama shopping mall and Bangsar Village – Non-Halal – this restaurant serves one of the most delicious clay pot chicken we have eaten. Simple recipe but served warm every time we have ordered. Their vegetarian food menu is also nice.Price-$$
  Fahrenheit 600 – Publika shopping mall– Their pasta Napoli and Snow white recipes, mushroom chicken lasagne are worth trying. Their breakfast menu is also worth it..Price-$$$ 

Wong Kok – 1 Utama shopping mall, Petaling Jaya, Chinese cuisine- the options for choosing Chinese noodles recipes are plenty. Price-$$
Their black pepper chicken and rice is delicious.
Oasis Food Court in Mid-valley is worth a visit.You have display of many local food joints.Price-$
Food court in Pavillion Bukit Bintang- many local and international cuisine outlet at reasonable price. 
This was part -1 of the foodie journey in Kuala Lumpur, we will post second part in coming weeks.

This blogpost is our way of appreciating Kuala Lumpur and its magnificent food world and it’s cuisine. 
I personally have learned a lot of new recipes, terms and history about local food. I will keep writing about that from time to time.I have also blogged local recipes Belanak Fish curry-here, Singapore style beehun -here and -Prawn Mee soup-here and also with local ingredients Belanak Fish here , Ash Gourd here , Mackerel fish - here, Ong Choi Green leaves- here , Siakap fish - here Sunlady melon here.
I do hope this post will help all of you, who are new to this city and don’t know where to start their foodie journey.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Melon Colada Mocktail Recipe

Our vegetable and fruit market is being flooded with fully ripened melons and cantaloupes these days. I often buy them fresh and we relish juicy melons a lot. Since Malaysia is a tropical country, these fruits are readily available. 

This mocktail recipe was made and relished very much. Mocktails are well, mock, that is minus alcohol. This is such a refreshing mocktail drink for a hot summer evening. Although, you can add alcohol of your choice to spike it and call it cocktail. 

You can use shaker with ice to make this mocktail. I have blended all in a mixer, which is what I have.
As a thumb rule in Pina colada, white rum is added but you can choose any other liquor as well. I have included papaya as well to make it healthy and filling. This is a kid-friendly recipe.

Melon Colada Mocktail Drink Recipe
Recipe requirements (serves-1)
  • 2-3 slices of fully ripened Sunlady melon or cantaloupes
  • 1 thin slice of fresh papaya
  • 12 tsp of fresh coconut milk
  •  3 oz. of sprite
  •  ½ tsp of honey as sweetener
  • Ice cubes and mint leaves for garnishing

  • Pick fully ripened and fresh melon and papaya for better flavour. Use freshly made coconut milk for best flavour, otherwise you can use canned one or coconut cream in place of coconut milk.
  • Cut and chop melon and papaya into slices. Pick 2-3 slices or wedges from melon and 1 wedge from papaya. Make a mixture with honey and coconut milk in a blender. Now cool it in fridge. At the time of serving take out and mix it with sprite again in mixer. Sprite itself is sugary, so less honey is added. More over the fully ripened melon and papaya gives a nice sweet flavour. Serve chilled with mint leaves.
  • Easy and delicious papaya melon colada is ready. You can spike it with alcohol of your choice (rum/vodka/tequila) if you want a nice cocktail.

Happy Cooking Friends and have a relaxing weekend.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Pan Fried Tofu and English Muffin with Chivda Crisp Mix- When East meets West

This recipe, I owe it to my dear daughter. As she is very fond of having her burgers with potato chips- salty and crunchy bites, which she ardently puts in between her chicken patties and burger buns. She herself started eating burgers made this way, when she saw one of her primary school friend spicing up her mundane school lunches with potato crisps, while we were living in UK.
Both kids had their ways to spice up their burgers. Sometimes  even with French fries layered in between. Sometimes with Thousand Island dressing, sometimes with mayonnaise or Ranch dressing and cheddar slices etc but 'Potato chips' also known as potato crisp over there, wins hands down for both of them.

 I know this seems like a circle, and that is how recipes evolve. Although both kids used to love non-vegetarian meals like with chicken burger, this is my attempt to make it little healthy and vegetarian.

I have used sesame oil to pan fry Tofu. I have also used iron skillet to pan-fry tofu instead of normal coated pans.And I must admit, sesame oil imparts a lovely taste to the overall product. I dint go for potato chips, I had my favourite snack – that famous Chivda crisp mix snack you get in packets in India with peanuts, raisins, cashews and corn flakes-‘chivda-crisp mix’ adds the crunch to this burger/muffin recipe.In Bengal while I was staying in Kolkata , I even had with 'Mukhorochak'.

 English muffin is a staple bread in UK and many use it as breakfast bread with jams, marmalade, bacon, ham and cheddarcheese as well. If you don’t get English muffin, then you can also replace it with normal burger buns. I have blogged about a nice home-made bread recipe way back here - Whole-wheat burger .You can make your own burger bun as well. I have omitted mayonnaise to make it  even more lighter. The layering is such a work of joy, olive oil spread, lettuce, pan fried tofu and tomatoes, perfect blend of sweetness, crunchiness and protein.

Here to the recipe
Pan fried tofu with English muffin and Chivda-Crisp mix
Recipe requirements

  • 3-4 whole meal English muffin
  • 200 Gms of tofu cut into flat square pieces
  • 2-3 tsp of sesame oil for pan frying
  • ½ tsp of red pepper powder
  • Salt as per taste
  • 3-4 tbs of Mayonnaise/Olive oil spread
  •  3-4 tsp of sesame oil 
  • 1-2 tomato cut into slices
  • Lettuce leaves
Cut Tofu Pieces and sprinkle red pepper powder and salt over them.Keep aside for 10 mints.
Heat up an iron skillet for pan frying the Tofu pieces. Add in about 1-2 tsp of sesame oil. Now pan-fry the tofu pieces just to get a nice golden-brown layer.
Now assemble English muffin
Cut the bread into half.
Spread olive oil soft spread over English Muffins.
Now place tomato slices, lettuce leaves and pan fried tofu pieces well stacked over one another.
Add in about a handful of Chivda- crisp Mix or spicy corn mix and cover it with another half of English muffin bread. You can add Mayonnaise in place of olive oil spread.
This is a vegetarian version.You can skip Tofu and Olive Oil Spread altogether and replace it with chicken patties or lamb patties and Mayo.Keema Kabab are also nice variations.

Internet reference:
I just love when few fellow bloggers also think like us and writes about it too here-  Finely Chopped..

Happy Cooking Friends and have a great weekend.

Friday, April 13, 2018

French Toast with Strawberry Compote

I have been away from food blogging world for a while now, but that doesn’t mean I was not cooking food or feeding hungry souls in my home. I have tried many local recipes and ingredients during these past days and I have to keep some records for that as well. I may update next couple of blogposts with those ingredients and recipes. But today, I will restrict myself with a delicious breakfast recipe. French toast with strawberry compote. I can’t imagine myself making this on weekdays, as morning is a hurried experience for us. Dear daughter catches her school bus early in the morning and dear husband is also almost rushing through. This scrumptious breakfast needs a relaxing Sunday morning, where one can sit, talk and enjoy the breakfast. Last Sunday made this as our breakfast, thought will share the recipe over here.

I remember a scene in Bollywood film ‘Queen’, where the main lead actress makes French toast for her roommates while holidaying in Amsterdam. And one of them being French himself tells her, well, what she has made has nothing French in it. I know where that was coming from as, French never make their French toast savoury compared to us Indian. French toast for an Indian is mostly savoury served with dollops of tomato ketchup!!  This made me all curious to know the origin of French toast and how it got its name. After many google searches, I came to know that in France it’s known as ‘’ Pain perdu’’ or ‘’Lost bread’’ which is eaten as desserts. This can be accompanied with afternoon tea or an English term for that is ‘High Tea’ snack, but is never made as breakfast. We are grateful to Roman Empire for Colosseum, Pantheon, Spanish steps and Latin language. And to countless inspiration for many Chariot races in Hollywood films ‘ Ben Hur’ for entertainment purposes. I may also like to add French toast to that list as well, as Romans had gigantic appetite for food, three course meal is very Roman. They used to make something very similar dessert with a day old bread or left-over high quality white bread. The first mention about French toast was in a 4th century Roman cook book written in Latin by Apicius.
From those days to its present form French toast has travelled far across, crossed Atlantic Ocean as well. French Immigrants brought their French toast recipes to America and American coined its name ‘French toast’ and from there no looking back.

Now to the sweet recipe for French toast
French Toast with Strawberry compote
Recipe requirements
For French toast
4-5 whole meal bread slices
1 cup of milk
1 egg
1 tsp of cinnamon powder
2-3 tbs of sugar
Cooking oil to pan –fry toast
Mix in egg, milk, cinnamon powder and sugar in a mixing bowl. Put the bread slices in the mixture and let it sit for 5-10 mints.
Put an iron skillet on flame, add about 2-3 tsp of cooking oil over hot iron skillet. Put bread slices and fry them each side for 3-4 mints at medium flame.
Take out and drain over kitchen towels.
For Strawberry compote
300 Gms of fresh strawberry
3-4 tbs of sugar
½ tsp of lemon juice
2 tsp of olive oil spread
Peel the outer skin of strawberries to get rid of small seeds. Chop strawberry roughly into small pieces.
Now put strawberry and sugar in a pot and keep on cooking. After about 7-8 mints at medium flame, strawberry will start to cook .Take off from the flame when sugar dissolves properly.
Add in lemon juice and olive oil spread and mix well. Let it cool.
Assemble French toast with strawberry compote and ice cream on sides. This is heavenly delicious.

and since its Poila Baishak this weekend ....let me wish all my readers ' Shobho Poila Baishaak'

শুভ পয়লা বৈশাখ। .অনেক শুভেচ্ছা সবাইকে। ...