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Monthly Archives: November 2011

Keeping it light

With two fiery delights down, I thought of taking a break this morning and lazily putting together some light sandwiches for today. But having made the resolution to cook as often as possible I felt guilty about not doing so. So to neutralise the guilt rolled up my sleeves and entered the kitchen.

I had kept some kidney beans to soak overnight as my original plan was to make something out of it. While boiling them the plan changed and I got down to trying a salad. This would also be the first time I got down to dressing up some chicken in greens.

I just wished I had checked on my Canon DSLR battery pack before beginning. I had to use the point and shoot instead. I also realised that had I diced the chicken it could’ve made for easier consumption.

Here’s what I put together.

1/4 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic

1 teaspoon olive oil

½ teaspoon salt

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast

¼ teaspoon black pepper

¼ teaspoon basil leaves

¼ teaspoon parsley leaves

1 ½ cups chopped red onion

1 ¼ cups (1-inch) piece yellow bell pepper

½ cup (2 ounces) crumbled cottage cheese

Baby spinach


Combine the first 7 ingredients from the list. This is the salad dressing that you will
use at the end.

In a large non-stick skillet heat a teaspoon of Olive oil.

Cut the chicken into ½ inch slices and sprinkle with black pepper, basil and parsley and let it sit for about ½ hour.

Cook the chicken in the pan for about 4-5 minutes on both sides. Add the onions and cook
till chicken is done and the onion gets tender. Stir frequently.

In a large bowl combine the chicken, bell pepper, cheese, kidney beans and spinach
and drizzle the dressing over the entire arrangement.

Light and easy…

A taste of home

Chicken gravy

When living abroad, it’s common to have flashes of memories back home while going about daily activities. It’s also easier today than ever before to instantly connect back. Thanks to technology, the roots don’t seem so far deep that you can’t reach them. You can instantly chat with friends and family who may be online, listen to your local music; but nothing quite transports you home to the degree that food can. And I’m not referring food of your local country that’s you’d probably get at a restaurant; I’m talking about food that was cooked at right home by mums and grandmums.

The dish that takes me straight home is simple home styled chicken gravy. There is no perfect way to cook it and one that you can rarely go wrong with. All you need is chicken (of course), two medium sized onions, two medium sized tomatoes, 6 different spices and whatever else you’d like as garnish. It’s better to have the onions and tomatoes cut into fine pieces in advance before you start the rest of the process.

This is how it’s done:

Chicken and marinade

Dice about one pound chicken breast into smaller pieces (I prefer it boneless)

In a large bowl, combine 2 table spoons lemon juice, 2 tablespoons cumin powder, 1 tablespoon cinnamon powder, 2 tablespoons black pepper, 3 tablespoons finely chopped garlic, and 1 teaspoon
salt. Mix the chicken in this mixture and keep under refrigeration for about an hour.


In a medium sized skillet, fry the chopped onions with about 2 tablespoons of oil under moderate heat along with 1 tablespoon of chopped garlic for about 10-15 minutes until the onion is tender and turns light golden in color.

Frying the Onions

To this mix add some 1 tablespoon garam masala (available at Indian grocery stores), 1 tablespoon paprika and stir for a minute.

Making the gravy paste

Add the chopped tomatoes along with the juices and some more salt and pepper to taste and stir till the mixture becomes a thick paste.

Add the chicken pieces and cook for about 10-15 minutes stirring occasionally, then add about one cup water and let it boil for about 10 minutes more. Taste to ensure that you don’t overcook the chicken.

Garnish with some green chilli, tomatoes and cilantro / spinach leaves.

There you have it!

Fishy and Fiery