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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

My First Liebster Blog Award

             Something really interesting I received recently....A Liebster Blog Award..Didnt know what it was..Felt really surprised & happy too...Anyhow it was an Award..Should be something good..

             It was Kauser's Kitchen who nominated me for this award...(was lucky enough to be one of her favorites..!!)....I came to notice her at the time of my event Restyle My Taste '12..in which she joined me with her wonderful entry... Do check out her blog...Its really amazing...It was she who explained to me about this award...Later I googled to get more information as I was really new to this word even..I feel its new to everyone who's new enough to this blogging world..

             The effect of the Liebster Award is that there is no real award.... There are no judges, no special rules.... No website with an official team to congratulate you and hold your hand.... It's mostly what you want it to be..... If you receive the award, you can accept it and pass it along.... It's that easy.... Its an award for upcoming bloggers with less than 200 followers and for who someone believes deserve some recognition for their blogging... Cute Enough !!

          I'm having 89 followers for now...Might be a small number, but I have 1100 followers in facebook..&  I don't think that's a small number..Have 134 in my circle in google+ & have twitter followers too..But really feeling very lucky to receive such a recognition within just 7 months of blogging.... This basically boosts someone's blog reputation which is a fantastic idea and everyone deserves a chance at it! Special thanks to Kauser...!! Feeling honored to be nominated...

           This is a kind of  chain letter, a blogger to blogger award, in which you have to nominate 11 bloggers with less than 200 followers...The word "liebster" is dearest/favorite in German, and still no one knows the origin of this lovely award....Supporting other bloggers and receiving support from them is one of the most rewarding parts of blogging....

          The Liebster Award is a recognition that is passed on from one small blogger to another as a way of supporting & helping each other grow their respective blogs.  Sort of a “hey, I like your blog and I’d like other’s to discover it, too”, sort of a thing....

Rules of the Award

1. Write 11 random facts about yourself.
2. Answer the 11 interview questions you've been given by the person who nominated you.
3. Fabricate 11 new questions.
4. Nominate 11 bloggers who have less than 200 followers and mention them in your post.
5. Tell the person who nominated you, along with the people whom you've nominated.


11 Random Facts About Me

1. I'm a very very friendly & fun-loving person...Do try talking to me if you have a doubt..
2. I love meeting new people & new places.
3. I hate to be silent, & to be in silence...
4. I get bored when reading books & love watching movies (same as my hubby)
5. I hate when anybody says that I'm fat or dark..(actually I'm not that dark..)
6. Loves when anybody tries out my dishes & provide their feedback... 
7. Not much interested in sports but my hubby does... 
8. Have studied in 3 different schools....& completed my engg degree too...
  • Gulf Model School, Dubai.
  • St.Josephs Convent GHS, Kollam, Kerala, India .
  • Our Own Indian School, Dubai.
  • Younus Clg of Engg, Kollam ,Kerala, India. (IT engg)
9. Being the youngest is the best thing...Love my parents, my sister & her two lovely angels...
10.  I love surprises !!
11. And last but not the least, I really love to be loved !! 
& happy enough to say I do have someone to love me to the fullest.... 
 

Questions I was asked

1.When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Had soo many wishes starting from being a princess, which later turned to being a teacher...& then I wanted to be an engineer, which I became....& finally I just want to be a happy person with everyone happy around me...

2.What's your favorite thing to have for dessert?
The quickest way to fill my heart is with a slice of Chocolate Cake or with my favorite Gulab Jamuns...

3.If you could travel back in time where would you want to go? 
 Nowhere...I love being in the present...:)
If you still insist, I would say, the day my baby was born..Want to see him in that way once again..& feel the happiness filled with tears with my whole family.... 

4.Did you ever wish you had a different name? If yes, what name?
I just love my name..Sajina...Specially when my friends called me Saju...Now I'm going to disclose a secret...I do have a nickname at home..It's Chinchu..:)

5.Where do you live and what do you like most about living there?
    I'm basically a Keralite born & bought up in Dubai..had my college days back in Kerala...After marriage reached back to my Dubai hometown...I just love this place..I think once you live here..It won't leave you..
   So many reasons to love this place...The lifestyle, different cuisine restaurants, easy availability of anything & moreover the safe nightlife..I don't think in any other place in the world can you see the malls & roads filled even at 2:00am..

6.If you could trade places with any TV character who would it be?
Tom & Jerry would be the best...Nobody in the world would be there who won't recognize them...& will get lots of love & cheers from all age groups...

7.Your favorite cuisine?.
Indian, Arabic & Chinese ..

8.What was the first thing you made in your kitchen?
Carrot halwa

9.What is the one feature you’d change about yourself and why? 
I get angry very fast...& you know why I deliberately want to change it...

10.What are your interests other than blogging?
Loving my family, watching movies & having an outing with my dears...& 1 more special thing.."Talking"...ha ha ha..I just love to talk..!!

11.What inspired you to begin blogging?
My hubby's words..." Something special in my cooking..."


My 11 questions for my fellow bloggers whom I have nominated..

  • What 4 words would you use to describe yourself?
  • What's your favorite drink?
  • One skill you wish you had!
  • Which was the first blog that you started following?
  • When was the last time you cried?
  • What you hate the most about people?
  • Do you think you’re a good judge of a person’s character? .
  • What is your favorite song?
  • What is worst about blogging?
  • What is your favorite TV show at the moment?
  • Your favorite color & fruit?
And finally...Lets see the Nominees for this wonderful Award..

1.A Peek into my Kitchen
2.Food Blog Events
3.Virunthu Unna Vaanga
4.My Cooking Journey
5.Sara's Tasty Buds
6.Priya Rao's Recipes
7.Sister's Cuisine
8.The Big Sweet Tooth
9.Kuk's Kitchen
10.Spicy Food
11.Kachuss Delight



And there it is whew!! Be sure to check out all these bloggers, all are excellent in their own way :) 
Really was a tough task selecting 11 fellow bloggers who didn't receive a Liebster blog Award yet !! Hope all these who are nominated by me are happy...
  
Thank you to all my followers and every comment I get, your words encourage me on to keep blogging!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Orange Flavored Cake with Nutella Glaze


          My wedding anniversary cake !! The first anniversary we were together..Last time I was back in India & he was here in Dubai..Felt really really happy being together this time...Also our little Ayaan was also with us...I prepared this cake in a hurry, so i could surprise him when he arrives from office...& the cake was just ready on time...So couldn't click many pics... 


          The cake was prepared with soo much of love & affection that it had to turn out with perfection..May be my decoration might not be that beautiful..but its taste was something really awesome...We were just drooling over the cake..Finished it within minutes...One of his cousin was also there when we were cutting the cake...I was really appreciated for cake from both...Enjoyed the cake  completely ...Do prepare it for your loved ones...A juicy , soft & spongy cake...with the touch of the silky glaze of nutella & orange juice to melt it in our mouth !!!


Ingredients

1.All Purpose Flour (Maida) -1 1/2 cup
2.Baking powder-2 tsp
3.Salt-1/2 tsp
4.Yoghurt -3/4 cup to 1 cup
5.Sugar-1 1/3 cup
6.Eggs-4
7.Orange zest (grated)-2 tsp
8.Vanilla essence-1/2 tsp
9.Olive oil-1/2 cup (or any other oil)
10.Orange juice (freshly squeezed) - 3/4 cup
11.Nutella- 2 large tbsp (for glaze)


Preparation (of cake)

~Grind sugar into powdered form & keep aside.
~Mix flour, baking powder, salt, powdered sugar in a medium sized bowl.
~Thoroughly clean the outer skin of the orange & grate its zest.


~Beat yoghurt in a small cup & make it smooth without any lumps.
~Now combine yoghurt, vanilla essence, orange zest, olive oil eggs & beat well in a large bowl.
~To this wet mix, whisk the dry mix to it & mix well without any lumps.
~Now pour 1/4 cup orange juice to this & mix well.

~Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
~Butter the baking tray & pour the batter into it.
~Bake for 40 mins.
~Else cook in a pressure cooker for 40-45 mins without keeping the weight on top. (mine is a pressure cooker version)

~Once the cake is cooked, cool for 5 mins.
~Prick many holes on top of the cake with a toothpick.
~Pour 1/4 cup orange juice on top spreading over.
~Let the cake rest for 10 mins to allow soaking.



Preparation (of glaze)

~Mix nutella & the rest of the orange juice with a spoon. (it won't mix well)
~Heat in microwave for 1-2 mins until it becomes soft, smooth & silky.
~Drizzle desired amount on top of the cake & just dig into it...

Sorry for the lighting of this image as it was taken at night..:)



Linking to : Vardhini's Bake Fest & Surabhi's BAKE FEST # 16


Linking to : Vardhini's Sweet Luv - 2013




Linking to : Sumee's Bon Vivant #12

Monday, February 18, 2013

Strawberry Smoothie

          Ahh !! My favorite fruit...Strawberries.. I often prepare this lip smacking smoothie at home...but never got a chance to click a pic...Something really easy to make...It actually just fills your heart...You can have it without sugar, if you feel so..But I love the sweeter version..

          The yoghurt added imparts the smoothie a delicious & creamy consistency...with a perfect sour taste...Making you want more...Its just a perfect breakfast or lunch or after dinner smoothie..Actually you can have it any time..

         Strawberries aid in weight loss, reduce the risk of chronic disease & it is rich in fiber too...These fruits are highly appreciated due to its characteristic aroma, bright red color, juicy texture, and sweetness...I just love even looking into these strawberries...

Ingredients

1.Strawberries-5-6
2.Milk-1 glass
3.Water-1 glass
4.Yoghurt/ Low fat Yoghurt-4-5 tbps
5.Sugar-1/4 to 1/2 cup
6.Whipping cream/Milk-1 tsp per glass (optional)
7.Powdered sugar-1 tsp(optional)
8.Strawberry-1(chopped per glass) (optional)


Preparation

~Blend milk along with thickly chopped strawberries for 1 min.
~Now add water, yoghurt & sugar accordingly & blend for 2 mins.
~Adjust the sweetness & sourness(strawberries or yoghurt) accordingly.
~Brush the tip of the serving glass with whipping cream.
~Dump the tip wet glass onto powdered sugar..so the tip gets coated with it.
~Pour the smoothie into the glass.
~Add little of chopped strawberries into the smoothie..It really  enhances the taste...I bet..
~Pour little whipped cream on top too..


Prepare this smoothie with lots of love for your family & don't forget to send me the pic..:)

Linking to :  Apurva's  Veggie fruit a month event strawberry  & Priya's  Event


Linking to : Sumee's Bon Vivant #12


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Spicy Mutton Potato Pie (Scotch Pie)


           The inspiration of such a preparation is actually a competition held in facebook...The main ingredient had to be mutton..So while in search of a different recipe, I found a mutton pie..So added some extra ingredients from my side, created my own methods for preparation...& this was the result !! As this was an experiment, I was not sure about the flavor...My husband was the first one to taste it..He didn't speak anything after having a spoon of it...My fingers were kept crossed still...Then I saw the perfect smile in his face when he is really satisfied with something...Ahh !! relieved...Yes..My experiment turned out to be  a success !!!
So posted for the competition & ready to share with you all....


         A pie is a baked dish which is usually made of a dough casing that covers or completely contains a filling of various sweet or savoury ingredients...This is a two-crust pie that has the filling completely enclosed in the pastry shell...


         Small mutton pies are commonly known as Scotch pies in Scotland & UK which was a part of luxury ..Today, they are less usual but no compromise in its taste..In this recipe, mutton is accompanied with mashed potatoes...Other vegetables like carrots, beans etc can also be added...


Ingredients (for pie filling)

1.Mutton-500gm
2.Onion-2 (large..finely chopped)
3.Garlic- 3 pods (grated)
4.Potato-1 (medium)
5.Coriander leaves-1 tbsp (chopped)
6.Garam masala-1/2 tsp
7.Salt-1 tsp or more
8.Vegetable oil-3 tbsp
9.Mutton stock-1/4 cup (water of cooked mutton)
10.Pepper- 1/2 tsp
11.All purpose flour (Maida)- 1 tbsp
12.Tomato-1 (medium) 
13.Egg-1


Ingredients (for pie covering)

13.All purpose flour (Maida)-1 cup
14.Salt-1 tsp
15.Unsalted Butter-1 tbsp
16.Potato-1 (medium)
17.Baking powder-1 tsp
18.Chilly powder-1 tsp
19.Coriander leaves-1 tbsp (chopped)
20.Bread crumbs-2 tbsp
21.Milk-3-4 tbsps


Preparation (of potato)

~Wash the potatoes  & cut them into 2 pieces without removing the skin.
~Cook these 4 pieces of potatoes in 1 cup water in a pressure cooker. (3 whistles)
~After the steam releases, remove from water & peel the skin off & keep aside.

Preparation (of mutton)

~Wash mutton thoroughly with water.
~Add 1 cup of water, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper along with the mutton & pressure cook till tender.
(5-6 whistles)
~After the steam releases, keep1/4 cup stock aside & drain the mutton.
~De-bone them & chop into cubes & keep aside.


Preparation (of pie filling)

~Heat oil in a kadai & saute onions with little salt until transparent.
~Add garlic & saute for 1 min.
~Now add chopped tomato & saute until mushy.
~Reduce flame & add garam masala, pepper, coriander leaves along with grated potato & mix well.
~Cook for 1 min in medium flame.
~Add the chopped mutton pieces along with mutton stock & let it boil till gravy thickens. .
~Adjust salt & pepper accordingly.
~Lightly beat the egg with 1/4 tsp salt & 1/4 tsp pepper.
~Keep aside 4 tbsp of this egg mix to brush on top of the pie.
~Pour the rest of the egg mix into the mutton filling  & do no stir for 1 min.
~Off the flame & mix well.


Preparation (of pie covering)

~Sift together flour, salt, baking powder, butter, grated potato, coriander leaves, bread crumbs,chilly powder together with your hands.
~Add little milk & prepare a dough out of it. 
~Freeze this dough for 15 mins.


Preparation (of pie)

~Take half of the freezed dough & roll into a big ball & dust with maida.
~Roll out the ball into a circle of the size of your baking tray.
~Butter inside your baking tray & place this rolled out dough inside.
~Now fill inside with prepared mutton masala & spread evenly.
~Take the rest of the dough & make 4-5 balls out of it & dust with maida.
~Roll them into your desired shapes.
~Place it over the filling as a covering of the pie.
~Brush egg white on top (optional)


 ~Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
~Bake for 30 mins.
~Else cook in a pressure cooker for 30 mins in low flame without keeping weight on top.



Never felt mutton this smooth & tasty...My husband was more happy because he was not disturbed by mutton bones in it which he found it very easy to have this yummyy pie..!!




Chicken Macaroni Cake - Valentine's Day Special !!!


               Have heard & tried many types of sweet cakes..But I never got a chance to experience such a fabulous spicy creamy cake with chicken & macaroni...It was indeed a wonderful combination...Sweet Italian Macroni cakes(Pastira) are also famous...But just couldn't resist ourselves from spooning into this macaroni cake with a twist...



             This is something really perfect for a romantic candlelight dinner (If you are interested in such methods to express your love)..Pack it for a trip...or as a valentine's day gift for your spouse...since the way to man's heart is definitely through his stomach...This cake will not let you down...Give it a try ..& you might win your partner's extra love this Valentine's Day...Wish you luck !!


Ingredients

1.Chicken - 200gm
2.Macaroni / Pasta- 200gm (nearly 1 1/2 cup)
3.Milk-1 cup
4.Eggs-2
5.Garlic-5 pods
6.Ginger- 1 tsp/ a small piece
7.Green chilly-3
8.Onion-1 (large..chopped finely)
9.Pepper-1/2 tsp or more
10.Coriander leaves (chopped)-1 tbsp
11.Garam Masala-1/2 tsp
13.All Purpose flour/ Maida-2 tsp
14.Salt-as reqd.


Preparation (of macaroni & chicken)

~Cook macaroni with 3 cups of water, 1 1/2 tsp salt & 1 tsp oil. (15 mins in high flame...stir occasionally)
~Check its tenderness & remove from flame, drain & keep aside.
~Cook chicken in a pressure cooker with 3/4 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper & 1/2 cup water.(3-4 whistles)


~After release of the steam, open it & shred the chicken to pieces.


Preparation (of cake)

~Heat 1 tbsp oil & saute chopped onions with 1/2 tsp salt until transparent.
~Meanwhile,grind ginger, garlic & green chillies together. (Need not make a paste)
~Add this ground mix to the sauteed onions & mix well. (1 min)
~Now add shredded chicken pieces with garam masala, pepper & coriander leaves.
~Saute for 3-4 mins in medium flame.
~Check the taste & Adjust salt & pepper accordingly.. (should stand a little higher as we are going to add egg & milk)


~In a bowl, beat the eggs along with milk & maida.
~Off the flame & add the egg mix to it & combine well.


~Add the cooked macaroni & make sure its all incorporated well.


~Mix well & adjust salt & pepper accordingly to your taste.

~Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
~Pour the spicy cake batter to the buttered/ghee/oiled cake pan & bake for 20 mins.
~Else cook it in a pressure cooker without keeping the weight for 20 mins in low flame.
~Mine is prepared in a pressure cooker..
~In both cases, remove & cool the cake before serving..
~Garnish the cake with tomato ketchup & coriander leaves...

Never ever had such creamy macaroni with chicken..!! 



Hope all will try this out & share your experience with me !!


Linking to : Vardhini's Sweet Luv - 2013




Linking to : Vardhini's Bake Fest & Surabhi's BAKE FEST # 16



Linking to : Priya's Valentine's Day Recipe Contest





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A big thanks for your valuable time reading my blog post...Your comments and feedback is very valuable to me & I would feel more happier.... Please feel free to leave your comments & suggetions for this post... Thanks a loot...
Try out my easy recipe & post its beautiful pic in my facebook page..
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or you can mail it to me..
~ SAJINA BISHAR