Firecracker Chicken

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Firecracker Chicken is crispy chicken tossed in a sweet and spicy sauce. The dish is done in two steps, first browned until the chicken is crisp in a pan stove top and next the cooked chicken is tossed in a sweet and spicy sauce and baked to perfection.

This dish an be served as an appetizer or as a side dish with plain rice or fried rice. I like using chicken thighs for the dish because of the texture but chicken breast works fine.

Preparation Time : 10 minutes

Cook Time : 15 minutes

Bake Time : 20 minutes

Serves : 4

Ingredients:

Skinless boneless chicken : 500 grams (cut into chunks)

Salt and pepper to taste

Corn flour/starch : 2 1/2 tablespoons

Eggs : 2 beaten

Scallions : To garnish

For the sauce:

Hot sauce : 1/3 cup

Red chilli flakes : 1 tablespoon

Rice Vinegar : 1 tablespoon

Brown Sugar : 2 tablespoons

Instructions:

Take the chicken chunks in a bowl, add salt, pepper, corn flour/starch and mix well to coat.

Pre heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 13×9 tray  or cookie sheet with aluminium foil and keep aside.

In a small bowl, mix all the ingredients listed under for the sauce and keep aside.

On High flame, heat oil in a wide pan. Dip the chicken pieces in the egg and put them in the pan in a single layer. It will take 2 batches to cook all the chicken. Cook the chicken pieces 3-4 minutes per side until the chicken is light brown and crisp.

Once the chicken is done, add the chicken pieces to the baking pan, pour the sauce and coat well. Make sure the chicken is in single layer.

Bake the chicken for 20 minutes. Turn off the oven, garnish the chicken with scallions and serve hot with plain rice or fried rice.

Cajun Rice

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Cajun cooking is originally from French Cuisine but has become very famous in Louisiana, USA. The flavours are very rustic yet delicious. Serve this delicious with some shrimp or chicken.

Preparation Time : 10 minutes

Cook Time : 20 minutes

Serves : 4 – 6

Ingredients:

Rice : 2 cups

Olive oil : 1 tablespoon

Bell pepper : 1 seeded and diced

Onion : 1 medium diced

Garlic : 2 cloves minced

Cajun Seasoning – Simple Recipe : 1/4 cup

Tomato paste : 2 tablespoons

Fresh lime juice : 2 teaspoons

Butter : 4 tablespoons

Salt to taste

Instructions:

Heat oil in a saucepan, add onions, peppers, garlic and saute for 3 minutes until the onions are soft.

Add tomato paste, cajun seasoning, lime juice, butter, salt, stir well and cook for 2 minutes until the butter is melted.

Add rice, stir in and cook for 1 minute. Add 4 cups of water, stir well and close lid.

Cook for 15-20 minutes or until the rice is completely cooked.

Serve hot with some shrimp or chicken.

Red Velvet Cookies

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These Red Velvet cookies are a little chewy. The beautiful colour is tempting and the taste of the cookies makes you want to grab another one. I added mini white chocolate chips but regular chocolate chips can be added. The cookies taste delicious even without the chocolate chips.

For the bright colour, I added some beetroot extract along with the red food gel. It gave a perfect colour to the cookies.

Preparation Time : 15 minutes

Rest Time : 2 hours

Bake Time : 13 minutes

Makes : 20 cookies

Ingredients:

Unsalted butter : 1 cup / 2 sticks

Granulated sugar : 1 cup

Light brown sugar : 1 cup

Eggs : 2 large at room temperature

Vanilla extract : 1 1/2 teaspoons

Red gel food colour : 1/2 teaspoon

Beetroot extract : 2 tablespoons

All purpose flour : 2 1/2 cups

Baking soda : 1 teaspoon

Cocoa powder : 1 1/2 tablespoons

Cornstarch/ corn flour : 2 teaspoons

Salt : 1 teaspoon

White chocolate chips : 2 cups

Instructions:

In a medium sized bowl, take butter and microwave it till it is semi melted.

Add both sugars and beat on medium speed till they are combined well for about 2 minutes.

Add eggs one at a time and beat on medium low to combine.

Add vanilla, food colour and beetroot extract, mix well to combine.

Add all the dry ingredients except chocolate chips and beat to combine. Don’t over mix.

Add the chocolate chips and fold into the dough.

Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 2 hours.

When it’s almost 2 hours, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Line the cookie sheets with parchment paper, scoop the dough on the sheets and bake for 13 minutes.

Let them rest for 10 minutes, and transfer the cookies on to a cooling rack and let them cool completely.

Store the cookies in a airtight container for 4-5 days.

Note : I got so many queries on a eggless version.

To replace 1 egg, whisk together 1 tablespoon (7grams) of ground flax or chia seeds with 3 tablespoons (45 grams) of water until fully absorbed and thickened.

Vanilla Mug Cake

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This Vanilla Mug Cake is a single serve cake baked in the microwave. It takes less than 5 minutes to make this mug cake. Adding rainbow sprinkles makes this Vanilla cake colourful and beautiful.

Preparation Time : 2 minutes

Cook Time : 1 minute

Serves: 1

Ingredients:

Butter : 2 tablespoons

Milk : 1 tablespoon

Vanilla Extract : 1/2 teaspoon

Egg yolk : 1

Sugar : 2 tablespoons

All purpose flour : 4 tablespoons

Baking powder : 1/2 teaspoon

Rainbow sprinkles : 1 tablespoon

Instructions:

In a microwave safe mug, add butter and melt it.

Add milk, vanilla, egg, sugar and whisk well with a fork.

Add all purpose flour, baking powder and whisk to combine.

Fold in the sprinkles and microwave for 70-90 seconds on medium power.

Serve immediately as is or topped with some chocolate syrup.

Chicken Rice Bowl

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My kids love KFC Rice Bowls that are layered with flavoured rice, mashed potatoes, gravy and popcorn chicken. The blend of flavours really go well together.

It’s really easy to put together these rice bowls at home. Little pre planning for mashed potatoes is all that’s needed. This particular rice bowl became an instant hit at home.

Preparation Time : 20 minutes

Cook Time : 30 minutes

Makes : 6 bowls

Ingredients:

Mexican Rice: 1 recipe

Creamy Mashed potatoes : 1 recipe

Spicy Popcorn Chicken : 1 recipe

Cheddar cheese : 1 cup shredded

For Gravy:

Chicken stock : 2 cups

Chicken bouillon : 2 cubes

Butter : 4 tablespoons

All purpose flour : 1/4 cup

Dried rosemary : 1 teaspoon

Dried thyme : 1/4 teaspoon

Onion powder: 1 teaspoon

Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

Melt the butter in a saucepan, add flour, rosemary, thyme, onion powder, salt, pepper and cook for 1 minute.

Add the stock, chicken bouillon slowly and whisk well to combine. Make sure no lumps are formed.

Cook until the gravy is thick and smooth. Turn off the stove.

Assembling the bowls:

Take the bowls, layer 1/2 cup rice, 1/2 cup mashed potatoes, 2 ladles of gravy, popcorn chicken and top it off with shredded cheese.

Serve immediately.

 

Cajun Chicken

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Cajun Chicken is super juicy and tender. Chicken drumsticks are rubbed with Cajun seasoning, topped with butter and bake to perfection. This is such a simple dish that the prepping takes just 5 minutes and your oven does rest of the work.

You can use store bought Cajun seasoning but making it home is real easy. Serve it with Cajun Rice.

Preparation Time: 5 minutes

Bake Time : 25 minutes

Serves : 2-4

Ingredients:

Chicken Drumsticks : 6

Cajun Seasoning – Simple Recipe : 1/2 recipe

Butter : 4 tablespoons

Instructions:

Pre heat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Take a oven safe pan, place the chicken drumsticks and rub with the spice mixture coving the drumsticks completely.

Add butter on top of the chicken pieces and bake them for 25-30 minutes until the chicken is nice and tender.

Serve immediately with some Cajun Rice or vegetables.

Indian-Spiced Chicken Salad

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Indian Spices has a lot of flavour. Chicken marinated with these spices and seared in a pan makes the chicken flavourful and tender. This chicken is served with a lettuce and tomato based salad. The crunchy salad goes well with the spicy chicken.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time : 10-12 minutes

Serves : 4

Ingredients:

For Marination:

Boneless/ Skinless Chicken : 500 grams cubed (breast or thighs)

Red chilli powder : 2 teaspoons

Chicken masala : 1 teaspoon

Lemon juice : 1 teaspoon

Coriander powder : 1/2 teaspoon

Cilantro : 1/2 chopped finely

Salt to taste

Salad :

Lettuce : 1 medium head washed and chopped

Tomatoes : 3 diced (de seed)

Onion : 1 small sliced

Olives : 2 tablespoons

Extra virgin olive oil : 1 tablespoon

Instructions:

In a medium size bowl, add all the ingredients listed under for marination, mix well and rest for 15 minutes.

In the meantime, Take a large salad bowl, add all the ingredients listed under salad and toss.

Heat 2 teaspoons of oil and add the marinated chicken and saute them for 10-12 minutes on medium flame.

Wait for 2 minutes and add the chicken to the salad, toss well and serve immediately.

Note: 

If you add the chicken right of the pan, it’ll make the salad soggy. So, wait for 2 minutes before adding. Add the chicken juices to the salad as well.

 

 

Chicken Stir Fry

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Chicken Stir Fry is as the name says stir fried chicken with peppers, stir fry sauce and Sriracha sauce. It’s a simple to make dish that goes well with plain rice or fried rice.

I used thicken thigh meat for the tenderness but chicken breast can be used. Also, store bought stir fry sauce works well.

Preparation Time : 10 minutes

Cook Time : 15 minutes

Serves : 4

Ingredients:

Chicken Thighs : 450 grams cut into 2 inch strips

Green Bell pepper : 2 large diced

Carrot : 2 medium sliced

Scallions : 2

Salt to taste

Pepper : 1 teaspoon

Sriracha sauce : 2 teaspoons

Stir Fry Sauce :

Soy Sauce : 1/4 cup

Oyster Sauce : 1/4 cup

Chinese Wine or grape juice : 1/8 cup

Cornstarch : 1/8 cup

Sugar : 1 1/2 teaspoons

Sesame oil : 1 tablespoon

Ground white pepper : 1 teaspoon

Instructions:

In a small bowl, add all the ingredients listed under stir fry sauce, mix well and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan, add chicken strips, salt, pepper and saute for 5-7 minutes until the chicken is no longer pink.

Add peppers, carrots, white part of the scallions, stir and cook for 2 minutes.

Add salt, stir fry sauce, sriracha sauce, mix well to coat and cook for another 3-4 minutes until the sauce thickens a little and coated to the chicken.

Turn off the stove, garnish with scallion greens, sesame seeds and serve hot with rice or fried rice.

 

Creamy Scalloped Potatoes

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These Creamy Scalloped Potatoes are super creamy and baked to perfection. It goes well with an meal as a side dish.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time : 10 minutes

Bake Time : 45 minutes

Serves : 2-3

Ingredients:

Potatoes : 4 large peeled and sliced into 3mm thick slices

Butter : 1 tablespoon

Garlic : 2 cloves minced

All purpose flour : 1 cup

Ground pepper: 1 teaspoon

Salt : 1 teaspoon

Grated parmesan cheese : 2 tablespoons

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F/ 180 degrees C

In a oven safe dish, fan the sliced potatoes.

In a small sauce pan, melt butter and cook garlic until it starts to brown. Add the flour, salt, pepper and stir well to combine.

Slowly add the milk while stirring so no lumps are formed. Stir until the sauce is smooth and creamy. Bring it to a boil and turn off the stove.

Add the sauce on top of potatoes, sprinkle with parmesan cheese and bake for 45 minutes.

Let it rest for 5 minutes before serving. Serve hot as a side dish.

 

 

Ricotta stuffed Peppers

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Ricotta stuffed peppers is bell peppers stuffed with a blend of ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, herbs, eggs and baked to perfection. Family loved these peppers.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Bake Time : 30 minutes

Serves : 3

Ingredients:

Bell Peppers (red, yellow, green): 1 of each

Extra virgin olive oil : 2 tablespoons

Ricotta cheese : 1 cup

Scallions : 3 finely chopped

Basil : 1/2 cup finely chopped

Fresh Mint : 1 tablespoon finely chopped

Fresh rosemary : 1 teaspoon

Fresh Thyme : 1 teaspoon

Salt : 1 teaspoon

Fresh ground pepper : 1 tablespoon

Eggs : 2 beaten

Parmesan cheese : 1/2 cup grated

Panko breadcrumbs : As topping

Instructions:

Pre heat the oven to 350 degrees F / 175 degrees C.

Cut the pepper in half lengthwise, take out all the seeds. Brush oil on both sides and place them in a oven safe pan.

In a bowl, add all the ingredients except breadcrumbs and mix well to combine.

Scoop the cheese mixture into the peppers and top with breadcrumbs. Bake for 30 minutes until the breadcrumbs turn golden brown and the cheese mixture is set.

Serve immediately.