Spicy Mushroom and Cheese Omelette

Happy New Year everyone! I was travelling and I am back to posting some tasty recipes that I made recently. This recipe is great for breakfast or brunch and even if you want to prepare something quickly for dinner.

Mushrooms and cheese are great together and as a filling in this omelette, they are an extra-special combination. The spicy mushrooms make this omelette different. They should be cooked until they are just al dentè. If they become mushy, then the result will not be the same.

I used Cheddar but you could use any strong melty cheese. I often make this omelette and if you try it, I guarantee that you would also do the same.

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PREP: 15 minutes COOK TIME: 35-40 minutes

Ingredients

6 eggs, beaten

150 g tasty cheese, grated

2-3 tbsp butter

Salt to taste

Filling

400 g button mushrooms

2 onions, cut into large pieces

11/2 tsp red chili powder

1 tsp turmeric powder

1 tbsp butter

Salt to taste

Instructions

Add enough salt to the eggs and set aside.

To make the filling, cut the mushrooms into large pieces and transfer to a large pan. Add all the other ingredients except the butter and cook over moderate heat until the mushrooms are just cooked. Do not overcook them. Remove from heat and add the butter. Set aside to cool slightly.

Heat a skillet or frying pan and add some butter to it. Pour in a third of the egg mixture and cook until the egg is almost set and golden underneath. Spoon some of the mushroom filling on one side of the omelette and sprinkle a third of the cheese. Fold over and cook for a few minutes until the cheese has started to melt. Remove from heat and set aside. Make the remaining omelettes in the same manner and serve hot with toast.

Mozzarella Stuffed Crust Pizza

You just can’t beat a Margherita pizza or an oozy, cheesy crust filled with mozzarella – the combination of both is irresistible.

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You could make the pizza dough a couple of days in advance. However, if the dough is chilled, leave it to come to room temperature for one hour. You could also use refrigerated pizza dough. Please refer to my earlier post Paneer Tikka Pizza for the pizza dough recipe.

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You could also be creative and choose your own toppings.

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PREP: 35 minutes COOK TIME: 35-40 minutes SERVES: 4

Ingredients

Fresh pizza dough/13.8 oz refrigerated pizza

3 tbsp olive oil plus a drizzle

250 ml passata

2 garlic cloves, crushed

½ tsp oregano

½ tsp red chilli flakes

1-2 tbsp polenta

250 gms mozzarella, grated

200 gms cheddar, grated

Toppings of your choice

2 tbsp basil, chopped

Salt to taste

Instructions

Dust a large baking sheet with polenta.

Heat the oil in a pan, add the garlic, oregano, chilli flakes and a pinch of sugar. Add the passata and simmer for 5-10 minutes until the sauce is thick. Season and set aside.

Roll the dough to a pizza base about 13 inches wide. Place it on the polenta and use about half the mozzarella to create a ring around the outside edge of the pizza base leaving ½ cm gap between the edge. Brush a little water inside the mozzarella ring and fold over the outside edge to enclose the mozzarella and create a stuffed crust. Press firmly to stick the dough in place.

Spoon the sauce into the middle of the base and top with the remaining mozzarella and cheddar cheese. Top with your chosen toppings, if any and brush the stuffed crust with a little oil. Sprinkle the chopped basil on top. Cover and leave in a warm place for 20 minutes until it is puffed up.

Meanwhile, heat the oven to 220 C. When the pizza dough has puffed up, pop the pizza into the oven quickly and bake for 15-20 minutes until the base is cooked through. Serve hot.

Banana Stem Fritters

In India, the entire banana tree is used – the leaves are used to wrap food and to eat from, food is cooked in banana leaves, the flowers and stem are used in cooking. In the recent Masterchef Australia, Gary used banana flower in one of the Masterclasses.

Cutting the banana stem is a fine art in itself, but the effort is really worth it. Only the core of the banana stem is used and it has a mild sweet flavour. It is full of fibre and is highly beneficial for treating ulcers and acidity. The raw juice is combined with buttermilk, salt and lime and is a natural diuretic. It is rich in potassium and vitamin B6.

These fritters are the only way I can get my daughters to eat banana stems. They are extremely delicious. This recipe makes around 20 fritters.

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PREP: 30 minutes COOK TIME: 30 minutes

Ingredients

11/2 cups banana stem, chopped

½ tsp turmeric powder

1 large onion, chopped

2 green chillis, chopped finely

1 tbsp ginger, chopped finely

2 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped finely

1 cup roasted chana gram

2 pieces of cinnamon

3 cloves

2 cardamoms

Salt to taste

Vegetable oil for frying

Instructions

Place the banana stem with turmeric and a little salt in a large pan and add ¼ cup of water. Cook on medium heat until they become tender and the water is completely evaporated. The stems cook fast and the mixture should be completely dry. Set aside to cool. Dry grind in a blender to a coarse paste (do not make it into a smooth paste).

Powder the roasted gram dal in a blender and set aside.

Roast the cinnamon, cloves and cardamom in a small pan and powder it.

Add the chopped onions, green chillis, ginger and coriander to the stem paste. Add the powdered spices, enough salt and half of the gram powder and mix well. The mixture should be firm enough to be shaped into small fritters. If it is too wet, add more of the powdered gram dal. Shape into small fritters and deep fry.

Coffee Marinated Tofu with Caramelized Onions and Hummus

Coffee as a spice rub has been around for some time now and I wanted to try it out.

I used it on tofu with amazing results. I baked it after leaving on the marinade overnight and it tasted so good. The coffee flavour was subtle and smoky and it paired beautifully with the hummus and caramelized onions.

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I also grilled the tofu for about ten minutes after it was baked. You can use garlic powder but I prefer to use fresh garlic. I used the remaining marinade to deglaze the pan while caramelizing the onions and they smelt and tasted of coffee and spices.

This recipe is vegan and gluten free. The perfect plant based protein dish to serve with a dip. And really delicious.

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PREP: 10 minutes (not including marinating time)

COOK TIME: 1 hour

Ingredients

For the marinade

  • 400 gms tofu, cut into strips
  • 2 tbsp coffee granules
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp vinegar
  • 2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar/jaggery
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp pepper powder
  • Salt to taste

For the hummus

  • 1 cup chickpeas, boiled
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3 tbsp tahini
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • Salt to taste
  • Olive oil
  • Black olives
  • Fresh coriander, chopped

For the caramelized onions

  • 3 large onions, sliced thinly
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 180 C.

For the marinade, mash the garlic by putting it through a garlic press. Crush the coffee granules in a pestle and mortar. Combine all the ingredients together and mix well. Arrange the tofu on a tray and pour the marinade over it, turning the tofu slices several times. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Arrange the tofu slices on a baking tray and drizzle a little oil over them, turning the slices to make sure that the oil is distributed evenly. Bake for 15 minutes on each side. Grill for another 10 minutes on each side so that the colour darkens.

Mix all the ingredients for the hummus except the olives and fresh coriander in a blender and blitz with a little water until the mixture is smooth and creamy.

Spoon the hummus into a bowl and drizzle some olive oil on top. Arrange the olives at the side and sprinkle the fresh coriander on top.

To make the caramelized onions, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil and add the onions with a pinch of salt. Saute the onions, stirring every few minutes, until they change colour and become golden in colour. Deglaze the pan with the rest of the marinade and when the onions are sticky, remove from heat.

Arrange the tofu slices, top with caramelized onions and sprinkle some toasted sesame seeds on top. Serve with the hummus.

 

 

 

Mini Frittatas

These mini frittatas were an on the spur of the moment recipe. I had some left over frittata mixture and I used it to make these pretty muffin type frittatas. They tasted great and puffed up so beautifully.

I sliced the zucchinis thinly and lined the bottom of the muffin pans and then poured the egg mixture on top. But you could also chop/grate the zucchinis and add them to the mixture before baking.

This recipe makes about 8-10 frittatas.

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PREP: 15 minutes COOK TIME: 20-30 minutes

Ingredients

1 zucchini, sliced thinly
½ cup spinach, chopped
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 large onion, chopped finely
2 green chillies, chopped finely
1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
½ tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp garlic powder
6 eggs, beaten
½ tsp baking powder
2 tbsp fresh cream
½ cup cheddar cheese, grated
Salt to taste
2 tbsp vegetable/olive oil

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 180 C.

Grease a muffin pan.

Heat the oil and add the cumin seeds. Add the onions, green chillies and ginger. When the onions are cooked, add the salt and turmeric powder. Add the spinach and mix well. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

Add the onion and spinach mixture to the beaten eggs along with the baking powder, garlic powder, cream and cheese.

Line the muffin pan with the zucchini slices and spoon the egg mixture on top almost to the brim. Bake 15-20 minutes in the centre shelf of the oven or until the top is puffed up. Serve immediately.

Tofu Loaf

Very quick and easy – this tofu recipe is one of my favourites. It’s healthy, vegan and tastes delicious. This recipe has been adapted from the original one by Louise Hagler.

Mashed potatoes goes very well with this dish. It’s great to have at anytime of the day. It’s also ideal for packed lunches and perfect for picnics.

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PREP: 15 minutes COOK TIME: 45-50- minutes SERVES: 6

Ingredients

  • 400 gms tofu, mashed
  • ¼ cup flax seed powder
  • 1/3 cup fresh coriander, chopped
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp Marmite/Vegemite
  • ½ tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder

Preheat the oven to 180 C.

Combine all the ingredients together and press the tofu mixture into an oiled loaf pan. Bake for about 50 minutes until it becomes browned. Cool for about 10 minutes before removing from the pan. Garnish with ketchup and coriander. It’s also good sliced and fried for sandwiches the next day.