Thursday, January 27, 2011

Easy Beef Chilly Fry

I think by now most of you know my special affection towards beef recipes. I love dry preparations of beef.  So when I saw this recipe in Magic Oven in Kairali TV, I could not stop myself from trying this out.  I already have a Beef Fry Recipe in this space, but this one had a different set of ingredients. One of the best things about this recipe is that it does not have too many ingredients nor too many steps is needed to cook up this dish. So this being an Easy Beef Fry recipe, I had to try it out!

Serves 5-6 people
Beef- 1 kg
Red Chilly Flakes- 4 tbsp
Garlic - 8 big pods
Fennel Seeds- 1 tbsp
Turmeric- 1/2 tsp
Vinegar- 1 tbsp
Curry Leaves- 2-3 twigs
Coconut Oil- 3 - 4 tbsp
Salt- to taste

  1. Cut the beef into small cube pieces.
  2. Smash the Fennel Seeds and Garlic into a coarse mixture. You could grind Red chilies to make the red chilly flakes.
  3. Mix all the ingredients except coconut oil and curry leaves into the cubed beef pieces and let it marinate for 15 minutes. Marinating is optional, if you need to rush through.
  4. Pressure cook the beef until it is 3/4th done. No need to add any water.
  5. Release the pressure carefully & slowly and open the cooker when it is safe to and continue cooking it until the water from the beef is almost evaporated.
  6. Add the coconut oil and curry leaves to the cooker and keep stirring until it reaches the dryness you need.

You could use more oil, if you need to fry it really dark. This beef goes well with all kinds of rice and breads. For a beef lover, this would also work as an appetizer.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Chicken Puffs

Let me start off by saying a "Happy New Year" to all my friends out there! Hope you all had a fantastic start.  Before I get on to the recipe, let me tell you about one of the most exciting recognition that I received end of December. My Kinnathappam recipe was selected as one of "The 30 Best Recipes of 2010" at a contest conducted by Chacko’s Kitchen. So not to mention that I have had a fantastic start for 2011!

So I will start off this year's post with an appetizer - Chicken Puffs. Something I have missed a lot after coming to US. Back home, this used to be one of the favorite snack for tea, and we used to have it at least once a week. But we never made this home. I would run to our nearby bakery - Anjali Bakery - one of the popular ones in the Trivandrum area to get the fresh baked hot puffs just out of the oven. They were in huge demand that you have to get them by 2pm or they would be gone. It was a blessing when I discovered the puff pastry sheets in the grocery stores in US. So here is what I do to recreate the taste and memories back home of the fresh hot puffs from Anjali Bakery.

Makes 12-15 Puffs

Oil- 2 tbsp
Onion- 1 small (0.65 lbs)
Ginger Garlic Paste- 1 tbsp
Turmeric Powder- 1/2 tsp
Chilly Powder- 2 tsp
Garam Masala- 1 tsp
Chicken- 0.45 lbs (cooked & shredded)
Pepper Powder- 1/2 tsp (coarsely crushed)
Puff Pastry Sheets- 2 or 2 1/2 sheets
Egg White- from 1 egg
Salt- to taste

  1. Add oil in a pan and add and saute onions when the oil is hot.
  2. When the onion turns translucent, add the ginger garlic paste and saute until the raw smell is gone.
  3. Add turmeric powder, chilly powder and garam masala to this and saute for a minute or two.
  4. Add the shredded chicken to this and mix until well combined. I used a 12.5oz can of chicken chunks. 
  5. Add the coarsely crushed pepper and salt and mix well for 5-10 minutes in a medium flame. 
  6. Turn off the stove and let the mixture cool.
  7. Thaw the Puff Pastry Sheets as instructed in the packaging.
  8. Cut the thawed puff pastry sheets into the required shape. I made 6 puffs from one sheet as you can see from the picture. A packet has 2 sheets.
  9. Fill each puff with 1 1/2 to 2 tbsp of the chicken mixture.
  10. Line the sides of the pastry with water using your hands and seal the puffs with the filling. The water will help it stick well together.
  11. Once all the puffs are done, beat the egg whites and brush the top of all the puffs with a light coat of egg whites. This will give the puffs a glazed look.
  12. Arrange the Puffs in a baking tray lined with a parchment paper or greased with butter/oil.
  13. Preheat the oven at 400 degree F and bake the puffs for 20 minutes or until they are slightly brown.

This recipe will make 12-15 puffs depending on how much filling you put into each puffs. You could replace the chicken with veggies or beef to make a variation. Serve the puffs with ketchup or on its own with tea. It will definitely be a perfect appetizer for parties!
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