Sunday, January 9, 2011

Mashed sweet potatoes

For the very first time, during Thanksgiving last year I attempted to make "Mashed sweet potatoes". It turned out  nice and served as a good side-dish. Enjoy!


Sweet potato - 2-3 large
Milk - 1 cup
Butter - 3/4th of a stick - approx. 6 tbsp
Salt - 1 tsp
Pepper - 1/2 tsp
Crispy shallots deep-fried or deep fried onions - as per taste


Boil the sweet potato till they are cooked.
Strain the sweet potato and keep aside.
Boil the milk with butter. Take care that the milk does not  burn in the sides of the container. Unless you like the added taste of burnt milk. ;)
Add it to the mashed sweet potato. Mash it fine or as coarsely as suits your taste.

Add 1tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper and mix it up.
Serve with crispy shallots.

Love the mildly sweet taste with some hot-tasting meat and the inter-play of the flavors.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Butternut squash soup

Butternut squash soup

I love soups, but somehow don't make them often! When we suffer from cold, we go scrambling for some soup in the pantry. Always have a good stock of packet soups but always miss Maa's make-from-scratch soup. She makes a delightful veg-stock chicken soup that everyone likes but that is the case with each and every item she prepares. Love you, Maa! :) Thus, I am trying to turn a new leaf and make some of my own soup from produce. Like people are scared of baking since it is so scientific, my phobia is for soup-making. Time to brace and take on the challenge! (*^*)

It was quite long time back I had the butternut squash soup in a restaurant (unless my memory fails it, I guess it was Sweetwater Tavern!) and has just loved the "delicioso creamy" feel of the same. When Maa was here last summer, I ventured to make it on my own. It was horrible - added too much salt - so much that none of us could ingest even 1 spoon of the same.

Come Thanksgiving - since noone was visiting us this time and we were not going anywhere - I wanted to do something different and more apt for Thanksgiving. Along with this soup, made Cornish Game Hen with Crabmeat stuffing, Mashed Sweet Potatoes and Crisp-fried Artichoke Hearts. The 3-4 hrs of cooking for just the two of us was so worth it! Sharing the pic here - will post the recipe for the rest of the items later. Btw, can anyone guess the theme of this meal? color food to symbolize the Fall colors!

Thanksgiving 2010 dinner

Ingredients for Butternut Squash soup (makes 4 big bowls)

1 medium Butternut Squash, peeled, chopped into cubes, seeded
2 tbsp butter
I medium onion, chopped
6 cups chicken stock (aka 6 cups Water with 6 tsp Chicken stock powder)
1/8 tsp Nutmeg
Salt and ground black or white pepper as per taste
4 tbsp heavy cream (add more if you want it thicker and creamier)


Heat butter - add few drops of olive oil so that the butter does not burn.

Add onion and cook till transparent.

Add chopped butternut squash and cook for a few mins.

As it looks a bit soft, add the chicken stock and let it continue cooking in Medium heat.

Takes about 10-15 mins - keep checking by poking a knife into the squash - if it goes in without an effort, it's done.

As it reaches room temperature, add the cream and blend it till it is creamy. Add some water if you want it thinner in texture (I added a cup of water)

Add nutmeg, salt and pepper.

IMPORTANT NOTE -- To give the gourmet $50/cup look, add a mint and a dash of cream and send me the money you saved by following this super-quick even-a-5-yr-old-can-make recipe! ;)

This recipe is inspired by: Butternut Squash Soup - by Cathy Lowe

Enjoy this in winter if you can! Miss the holidays already! :)

Monday, January 3, 2011

Tom Yum Soup

Happy New Year everyone!

My new year resolution is to make 1 post per week no matter what. My problem of the past has been that either I don't have the pic or the recipe noted exactly with respect to the ingredients - but this year, I am trying to turn a new leaf and post whatever I had. So don't get frustrated (if at all someone is still checking back! If you are, thank you :)) if the pic or recipe is missing - it will be added someday soon. It means a lot to me when readers comment/drop emails and keep coming back for more! Thank you for the same - and a big shout-out to all family and friends who have poked me to continue my blogging experience. So here goes my first 2011 recipe.

Whenever we order soup in Thai restaurants, it is always the Tom Yum soup. I am not a big fan of trying out the ready-made pastes or powders for soups other than the ones I regularly use. Sometime back, I was feeling a bit adventurous in my grocery purchase time and went ahead and wanted to try this Tom Yum soup paste. Glad I did coz I have got such an easy and delicious recipe which takes almost no time to make it!!

Ingredients (makes 2 big bowls)

Tom Yum soup paste (Maesha brand available in Lotte Plaza) - 4tbsp
Shrimp 8 frozen medium size
Mushroom 5 button size, chopped
Green onion stalks - 2, chopped
Water 4 cups

Optional : If you want it thicker, add a tbsp or two of evaporated milk

Boil water. Add the Tom Yum paste. Mix it well.
Add the frozen shrimp as the above mix is boiling. No need to thaw or defrost the shrimp.
Add chopped mushroom.
As the mushroom is almost cooked, add the chopped green onion stalks and let it continue boiling.

We did not add the evaporated milk as recommended in the paste bottle. It was just great as-is and we were so full that dinner definitely had to wait another 2-3 hours. So plan to serve it accordingly.

TBD: The pic will be added later when it is cooked next time. Thanks for your patience. :)