” For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning. ” ~T.S. Eliot
This year is marked by many failed and successful attempts and as a food blogger I have discovered few new taste and flavours, has ventured into new avenues and travelled a lot, some for pleasure and some for not ! The best part however is that I found a new budding food historian in me, so in the coming year my writing will reflect more about that, and will try to keep the blog as flavorful as possible !
Here are some of the best from each month that are so close to my heart, and I enjoyed them sharing with you all the more !
JANUARY – If there is any cuisine till now which has influenced me most is the Thai cuisine and that too heightened after spending few days in the Thailand, soaking the beauty and licking the flavours . So naturally Pad Thai becomes my most cherished recipe so far.
FEBRUARY - Just a year back I was introduced to the cheesecake – a frozen one by Sara Lee, words are not sufficient to express that rich and creamy feeling ! It was almost love at first sight ! After few sugar rushes to New York Cheesecake factory, I baked this Oreo Cheesecake with explosion of flavours. People still recommends it !
MARCH – Is there any loveable thing about banana, perhaps not (am not a fan of this fruit !), but two over ripe bananas has changed my view forever. Needless to say they went on to baked this Banana pecan quick bread, it was almost addictive. We finished the one pound bread in less than 24 hours, just two of us !
APRIL The new food in my pantry, almost an instant fan. It can make any meals extraordinary. Bacon wrapped jalapeno and cheese appetizer
MAY – The Perfect knife set ? Is there any ? But the search led me to understand the science behind it and why it should matter in a foodie’s kitchen.
JUNE – I am not a vegan but I respect people’s choice of food, and my first step towards understanding the veganism. Mango Flan with coconut cream - vegan’s tropical paradise !
JULY – Pure nostalgia ! Where on Earth will you find the small fresh water fishes, so good to taste ! Only in the fish markets of Kolkata and now exported here in US. Tel koi - relive the old days !
AUGUST – The real goodness of cashew butter unfolds it magic and can a sauce be so delicious and subtle ! Proscuitto stuffed chicken with cashew butter sauce was a superhit !
SEPTEMBER – Using spinach puree in an Indian dish is not new, but imitating the Motimahal style, is perhaps worth doing it. Subzi diwani handi – reinvent the way to cook a mix vegetable curry.
OCTOBER – A fresh loaf of bread baking in the oven is every foodie’s dream. A braided one adds the style and enhance the presentation. My first tryst with Zopf / Swiss braided bread, and a proud one too !
NOVEMBER – In the seamless world today where flavours collides almost every day, fusions are the way to reinvent the old flavours. Tartlets made with almond flour and filled with Indian carrot pudding is a sure winner ! Almond crust tart filled with Indian carrot pudding - east meet west !
DECEMBER – Triple chocolate fudge cake - The best chocolate cake I have baked ever ! The secret behind a good chocolate cake reveals – sour cream spells the magic and those reflections on a ganache – unleashing a temptress !
And with this I will conclude the last post of the year, but before that here is the recipe for Mexican bean chili – a dish that took me by surprise, right from an Aztec kitchen and been influenced by various cultures. Imagine a huge cauldron of tomatoes, meat and chilis stewed for hours and flavoured with smoky cumin, the vegetarian version is the result of another food uprising in early 70’s. Meat or no meat this dish is a sure winner in the winter months !
Recipe: Mexican black bean chili
Summary: Mexican black bean chili – stewed with chili, tomatoes and black beans and with lots of spices.
- Black bean : 1 can drained
- Onion : 1 medium diced
- Green bell pepper : 1 medium chopped
- Tomatoes : 2 medium diced
- Carrot : 1 cup diced
- Red chili powder : 1 tbsp
- Ground cumin : 1 1/2 tsp
- Dried oregano : 3/4 tsp
- Garlic cloves : 3 crushed
- Salt and pepper to season
- Sour cream : 2 tbsp
- Fresh cilantro : 3 tbsp
- Oil : 2 tbsp
- Heat some oil in a pan and lightly fry the garlic. Add the onions and saute till it becomes translucent.
- Add the carrots and capsicum, fry on medium heat till it becomes soft.
- Add the tomatoes and salt. Cook it till the tomatoes becomes mushy.
- Add the black beans and all the spices.
- Fry for sometime before adding the water.
- Let it stewed on low heat till it becomes a gets a soupy consistency.
- Check the seasonings, add the sour cream, blend it well and garnish with cilantro.
- Serve hot with tortillas or as accompaniment to other dishes.
Preparation time: 15 minute(s)
Cooking time: 40 minute(s)
Diet type: Vegetarian
Number of servings (yield): 3
Culinary tradition: Mexican
Wishing you and your family ” HAPPY FUNFILLED & PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR”