Friday, December 7, 2012

Creamy Pasta with Zucchini, Mushrooms & Pepperoni

While I constantly complain about my weight, I am also constantly on the look out for quick recipes that don't have you spending too long in the kitchen.With a 7 month old baby these come handy on days when she's fussy and ensures I spend no more than 15 minutes in the kitchen. Here is one of my favourites:


Fusilli - 250 gms
Mushrooms - 250 gms
Zucchini - 1
Pepperoni Sausage - 1 (approximately 250 gms) *
Herbed Cream Cheese - 200 gms **
Salt & Pepper - To taste


Cook the pasta as per the instructions on the packing. Slice the mushrooms, zucchini and the sausage. 
Cook the sliced sausage in a pan over medium heat without adding any oil for 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms and zucchini slices and continue to cook for another 5 minutes. Make sure you stir often. The vegetables shouldn't be overcooked because then they tend to turn soggy. 
Now, add the cream cheese and cook for 2 minutes making sure it's well mixed with the sausage and vegetable slices.Toss in the pasta and add salt and pepper to taste. 
Serve hot. 

* I use the Swiss cervelaatworst but regular pepperoni slices should work just as well. 
** I use the garlic and chives flavoured boursin cheese. If you use plain cream cheese you can add some garlic and herbs for flavouring.

(Inspired from a supermarket recipe)

Friday, November 9, 2012

Strawberry Cheesecake

I met a dutch friend for coffee and she suggested that I try making a no-bake cheesecake with kwark and digestive biscuits. I decided to use the season's last strawberries for my first attempt with the cheesecake. (It's possible to try the same recipe with mango, blueberries, apricots, lemon, etc.)

Kwark (Quark) is a creamy curd-like yogurt which is sold in tubs at every local supermarket in The Netherlands and Germany. Although it's easily available here I was wondering what people in India could use as a substitute. I believe the process for making kwark is quite similar to the process we follow for making chakka for shrikhand. 
As I looked on the internet for ideas I stumbled upon a website with some really nice recipes. Coincidentally  the author Deeba Rajpal is based in Delhi. She's been making cheesecakes with homemade kwark. I would definitely recommend Deeba's recipe for the cheesecake.

Here's the link to the recipe on her website -

I've used ingredients in a different proportion than Deeba. I also have easy access to kwark in all the supermarkets here so I opted for the vanilla flavoured variety.

Vanilla kwark - 500 gms
Digestive biscuits - 300 gms
Low fat cream -250 gms

I have used 500 gms of Vanilla kwark and used 300 gms of digestive biscuits for my base as I like it thicker. You will also need more butter (I used low fat butter) so that the base binds well.

I bought a box-full of strawberries and use one half for decorating the cake and the other half to make strawberry coulis.

I made the strawberry coulis by cooking chopped strawberries, sugar and lemon juice together until I got the right consistency.

Hope you have as much fun making this cheesecake as I did. Happy Experimenting!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Be right back!!!

So, we haven't blogged in over a year. We've been busy. We moved to a different city and we had a baby!! What an eventful and hectic year it's been!! We haven't stopped experimenting with food but it's been difficult to post all our new food exploits.
  Our little girl is now 6 months old and we promise to post some new recipes soon(including the kwark cheese cake that we promised a while ago).

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Frosted Green Beans with Sesame

Harsh bought me 'The Silver Spoon', which they say is the bible of authentic Italian cooking, for my birthday. The book has been very successfully sold in Italy and most Italian households have it on their bookshelves. A lot of Italian brides receive this book as a wedding gift.
I was very excited as i flipped through the 2000 plus recipes in the book as this meant months and months of experimenting in the kitchen. There are really simple recipes and some quite complicated ones as well, but they're all explained very simply. The only flip side is that there aren't too many pictures in the book and sometimes I find it hard to imagine what a dish would really look like. In fact, often it's the photograph that makes a dish tempting enough for me to try it out and lack of pictures can be a little intimidating.

This week I had 200 gms of green beans that I'd plucked off the bush beans I'd grown in our balcony and I thought it would be a great idea to try something Italian with them. More often that not, Italian cuisine is limited to pizza, pasta and risotto, and I thought I'd use this opportunity to bring you a recipe that falls into none of these categories.

Read on for the recipe to make Fagiolini Glassati Al Sesamo or Frosted Green Beans with Sesame.


Green Beans (or French Beans) - 200 gms
Finely sliced Spring Onion - 1
Lemon juice - 1 tsp
Grated rind of a lemon - 1/4 tsp
Sesame seeds - 1 tsp
A blob of butter
Olive oil - for drizzling
Salt - to taste
Pepper - to taste


Cook the beans in salted boiling water for ten minutes, then drain and set aside.
Melt a blob of butter in a pan and saute the spring onions over low heat until they're softened. Stir in the lemon juice, the rind, salt and pepper and stir to mix well.
Now, add the green beans, mix well and continue to cook for another 5-10 minutes. In a separate pan roast the sesame seeds for a couple of minutes until they're fragrant.
Transfer the beans to a serving dish, sprinkle with sesame seeds and drizzle with olive oil. Mix well and serve hot. 

Monday, August 8, 2011

Pumpkin Risotto


Pumpkin (diced) - 100 gms
Risotto Rice - 200 grms
Chicken bouillon cubes - 2
Finely chopped onion - 1
Finely chopped parsley - 2 tbsps
Olive Oil - 2 tbsps
Parmesan cheese - 1/4 cup
Pepper - 1/4 tsp
Salt - to taste


Heat the olive oil in a non-stick pan and saute the onions until they turn translucent. Add the pumpkin and two bouillon cubes and saute for a couple of minutes.
 Now, add a cup of water and cover the pan, and cook until the pumpkin is soft. Turn off the heat and mash the pumpkin.
Add the risotto rice and stir it into the mashed pumpkin mixture. Pour in 2 cups of water and let the rice cook.
You need to stir often to ensure that the rice doesn't stick to the bottom. If needed add some more water. The rice should take about 20 minutes to cook. Once the rice is cooked you can turn off the heat and add the Parmesan cheese, chopped parsley leaves and the seasoning.
Stir well and serve hot.


If you let the rice stand for too long it can become a little hard. So, if you cook it in advance make sure to add a little water and mix the rice well before serving it.

Most bouillon cubes have salt in them you might not need additional salt in your risotto.

Vegetarians can use vegetarian bouillon cubes.