Tandoori Chicken – Rotisserie

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Cooking chicken on a Rotisserie is undoubtedly more work than simply putting it on a rack and roasting it; but the extra effort gives its reward in terms of having a really juicy, golden chicken that is a chicken lover’s delight.
Marination and trussing are the key words here. Marinate a few hours at least, overnight if you must. While trussing the chicken, remember this must be done before attaching it to the skewer. This guarantees perfect balance and a secure fixing. A basic temperature guide I followed was around 200 C and 18 minutes per 450g. Check out http://www.recipetips.com/kitchen-tips/t–1437/rotisserie-grilling-doneness-guide.asp as well.

Ingredients

1 medium sized chicken
150 ml lemon juice
1 ½ inch piece ginger, ground into a paste
2 tsp red chilly powder
1 small pod garlic, ground into a paste
1 tsp black cumin seeds
1 large onion ground into a paste
300 ml curd
2 tsp ghee
Salt to taste

GRIND TOGETHER
2 tsp garam masala
2 sticks of cinnamon
8 black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
3 cardamoms
4 cloves

METHOD
Mix the onion, garlic and ginger with curd. Apply the mixture to the inside and outside of the whole chicken and marinate for 5 hours.

Add chilli powder, cumin seeds, salt and ground spices to the lime juice and mix well.

Make deep slashes with a sharp knife on each side of the chicken and smear the lemon juice mixture. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour.

Cut a long piece of kitchen twine and truss the chicken’s legs and wings so they don’t flop loose.

Put the rotisserie bar through the chicken, as close to the center as possible so that about the same amount of meat is on all sides of the bar; then push the forks into the chicken to hold it in place. Hang the rotisserie bar with the chicken inside the oven and place the drip pan under the chicken.

You can cover the chicken with aluminum foil and remove the foil half an hour before it is done and then baste with butter.

Serve hot, sprinkled with garam masala , sliced onions and lemon.

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ANZAC Biscuits (Cookies)

Anzac Cookies
It’s still raining here in Goa, and it has been a slow-paced day so far. Add to it a gentle rain and a little slothfulness quickly turns full blown. Yet I thought, no time like now to bake a few ANZAC biscuits. Not overly-sweet, Anzacs are made from oats, coconut, and flour combined together in a butter-kissed dough. The end result is a hearty, sturdy cookie, with little fuss – easy to make, almost impossible to get wrong.

These biscuits have a history too. ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps and these biscuits are part of New Zealand baking tradition. The accepted story is that these cookies (biscuits) were made by the Troops in the trenches with provisions they had at hand to relieve the boredom of their battle rations, some say that these were made by the Kiwi women who sent them over to the troops in WWI because they were economic to make and kept well. Yet lore says that they originated from the Scottish Oatmeal Cakes. Whatever the origin, these cookies continue to be loved and relished by many. I am definitely a fan.

You can experiment by adding spices or orange or lemon zests. Have fun!

1 cup flour (all-purpose or whole wheat pastry)
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup finely shredded coconut
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 cup butter, cut into little cubes
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon boiling water
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat oven to 325F degrees.

Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl- flour, oats, coconut and both the sugars.
Melt the butter, sugar, and golden syrup together gently in a pan over a low heat. Once it has formed a delicious caramelly puddle, stir in the dry ingredients.

In a small bowl dissolve the baking soda in a little hot water. Mix it well and quickly. Add to the above dough. Combine well. I used my hands as it seemed the easiest way.
Make small balls, flatten carefully and drop by the tablespoonful onto parchment lined baking sheets.
Bake for 12 minutes, or until deeply golden.

Note: If you like your cookies crispy,make the balls flatter.

Chocolate Eclairs

Chocolicious!!!!!
It’s been pouring, pouring, pouring here in Goa, and I feel so lazy, not to mention sleepy. Sadly with 2 very hyper kids who seem to get through the day with minimum sleep, my sleep time gets reduced to a bare minimum. I had some painting work to get done and promised to bake my son some chocolaty treat if he didn’t fight with his brother for 10 whole minutes. Well, he did! And since it was my turn to keep my promise I baked him this yummy dessert.

This oh-so-yummy dessert been on my to-do list, like, for EVER. Somehow it seemed time consuming and I never got around to doing it. But now the time has finally come…

Contrary to what I thought, these were fun to make and assemble. I even got my son to give me a hand. They turned out quite tasty as well- though not quite photo-worthy! Éclairs have been popular with chocolate lovers for years now. Although little is known about the origin of the éclair, it is believed to have originated, (like most wow-desserts) in France around the turn of the nineteenth century.

The only problem I faced was with the cream. Perhaps I didn’t beat it enough, and was a bit messy to fill into the éclair. STILL, they were scrumptious Go ahead try them…

Ingredients

Pastry
¾ cup refined flour
A pinch salt
75 grams chilled butter, diced
3 eggs

Filling
1 cup whipping cream ( I used Amul Fresh cream)

Chocolate Icing
50 grams chocolate
25 grams butter

Method

Preheat oven to 200 C/400 F

Sift the flour.

In a pan heat butter and 1 cup of water and stir over low heat until butter melts. Now dump all the flour all at once and stir over medium heat until the mixture forms a ball and leaves the sides. Now take off the flame and let it cool for about 5 minutes.

Now add the eggs one at a time beating well after each addition. The dough will now look smooth and shiny. This mixture is called choux pastry. Spoon this mixture into a piping bag with a wide nozzle, or you could fill into a zip lock bag and cut the end to form a ½ inch hole.

Line a baking tray with buttered paper. Squeeze the mixture into medium sized sausage shapes. Keep these well apart (3 inches or so) as they will double in size in the oven.
Bake for about 30 minutes or until the éclairs are puffed up and golden brown in colour and feel hard when tapped. Now, and this is important, IMMEDIATELY remove from baking tray and with a pointed knife gently make slits on the top of each éclair so that the steam escapes and the éclairs do not become soggy. Keep aside.

For the icing, melt the chocolate in a double boiler and add butter and mix well. Take off stove.

Now for the filling- Whip the cream for a few minutes until it is stiff.

Fill, using a piping bag, the insides of the éclair and pour the chocolate icing over the éclair. This part turned out quite tricky and messy. Next time I will use a piping bag to cover the éclair with the icing.

Leave for a while, if you can resist it, until the icing sets.

Sponge Cake Pudding

Spomge Cake Pudding
I started out with the intention of making a Waldrof Cake (courtesy Betty Crocker) but the sponge cake I make cracked while I was turning it over. (I didn’t grease the cake tin well enough I guess!) Searched around and found this simple yes tasty cake pudding recipe. While it was not very visually appealing, it tasted good and qualifies as a quick and simple dinner party dessert.

Ingredients
1 Basic Sponge Cake- Cut into 2-inch thick fingers
1 banana diced
1 Apple diced
¼ cup water mixed with 2 tbsp sugar
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Tanjore Paintings -Balaji

Balaji

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