Power of Garnish – Oven-dried Orange Slices

Garnish is such an important part of any food dish be it a salad, side, main course or dessert. Garnish is an edible embellishment used to bring out the beauty of a food item, savoury or sweet.  How much ever would one say that it is the taste that ultimately matters, magic really happens when we use the entire spectrum of our senses and sight is one of the important ones. You can see that a lot of times this garnish is the difference that takes the dish from routine to five star category. Such is the power of garnish!

Continue reading “Power of Garnish – Oven-dried Orange Slices”

Breadfruit Fry

It would not be a surprise if a lot of you do not know what a breadfruit is. Well this fruit belongs to the jackfruit family and seems to be originally from the New Guinea, Malaku Islands and Philippines. It then spread to the other parts of the world during the Colonial era. That is how, I suppose, it must have come to Goa. 

The breadfruit tree which bears the fruits grows upto almost 85 ft in height. The fruit itself is rich in carbohydrates and packed with nutrients. Because it is mainly found in tropical regions, you could think of it as tropical potato and that too nutritious! It can be eaten steamed, boiled, baked and fried depending on how you like it. In Goa, breadfruit is called Nirphanas and is most popularly consumed as shallow or deep fried. My mom-in-law was from Mangeshi and hence I was fortunate to learn the traditional recipe from her. 

This dish is called Nirphansache Kaap(नीरफणसाचे काप) in marathi and is shallow fried like fish. It just tastes awesome and is a favourite with my family. Here is the recipe:

Breadfruit

Ingredients 

  1. Breadfruit 1
  2. Rice flour – 1 cup
  3. Gram flour – 1/8th of a cup
  4. Semolina – 1/4th of a cup
  5. Salt – to taste
  6. Chiili powder – 2 tsp
  7. Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
  8. Oil for frying

Method

  1. Peel the breadfruit and cut it into half or quarters depending on the size of it. Remove the core. Then cut it into thin slices about slightly less than a cm.
  2. Add salt, chilli powder and turmeric and marinate for half an hour.
  3. Mix together rice flour, gram flour and semolina and season with salt and chilli powder.
  4. Coat the breadfruit slices in this and shallow fry on tawa till they cook and crisp up. Cook covered for some time so that they cook quickly. Serve hot.

This is our family favourite and more so because breadfruit is rarely available in Pune. You can also deep fry covered in a gram flour batter like pakodas. The slices need to be cut uniformly and of correct thickness. It serves as a great side dish and is quite simple and minimalistic to prepare. So if you can find breadfruit in your area do give this dish a try.

The proof of the pudding …

“Good, old-fashioned ways keep hearts sweet, heads sane and hands  busy”, said Louisa May Alcott, the author of Little Women. And I have found so much deeper meaning and truth in this while the whole world has been in lockdown due to the Covid 19 epidemic. I have been going back to so many old recipes and cooking or baking them not only because I consider working in the kitchen therapeutic, but also because these dishes have been our comfort food in these taxing and high tension times.

One such recipe is the good old bread and butter pudding which never fails to satisfy the sweet cravings. Continue reading “The proof of the pudding …”