Saturday, October 24, 2009

Sri Lankan Fish Curry with Tomato ( Thakkali Malu )

A few years ago, my husband and i went to Kerala for our 5 year wedding anniversary. The whole experience in Kerala was just amazing, from the scenery to the ambiance to the food. The coconut they use in their cooking kind of reminded me of Sri Lankan style curries. I was browsing the web for some new recipes and came across this one, Fish in Tomato. The flavors of the different spices together makes it just absolutely delicious. With each bite, you get a burst of various spices while the fish just melts in your mouth. The recipe call for Mackerel but you can use any fish of your choice. I've tried it with King Mackerel and Grouper and it tasted great both times. Pair up this dish with roti's, naan, paratha's or even just plain rice. Here's the recipe :)

Fish Curry with Tomato (Thakkali Malu)

500g Fish steaks (Spanish mackerel)
1 teaspoon Ground turmeric
1 teaspoon Salt
1 Large onion, roughly chopped
3 cloves Garlic
2 teaspoon Finely chopped fresh ginger
1 Medium size ripe tomato, chopped
2 tablespoons Oil
1 tablespoon Ceylon curry powder
1 teaspoon Chili powder
2 cups Coconut milk
Oil for frying
Salt to taste


1) Wash and dry fish well and rub all over with turmeric and salt.
2) Cut each steak into serving pieces.
3) Heat oil in a frying pan and fry the fish until golden brown on both sides. Remove and set aside.
4) Put onion, garlic, ginger and tomato in container of electric blender and blend to a smooth paste. Heat oil in a saucepan and fry the blended ingredients for a few minutes, until oil begins to separate from mixture.
5) Add the curry and chili powders and about a teaspoonful of salt and the coconut milk. Bring to the boil, stirring. Simmer for a few minutes, then add the fish and simmer further for 10 minutes.
6) Serve with rice and accompaniments.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Banana Bread

Banana Bread has got to be one all time favorite. Eat it for breakfast, as a snack or dessert with some ice cream. I usually make banana bread pretty frequently since there's always banana's in my fruit bowl. And if they are not eaten up by the time they a little to ripe, they are up for grabs to be baked:). I love the subtle cinnamon taste in banana bread which balances out the sweetness. Any kind of spice in baking usually gives the baked goods a vibrant flavor. So here's the recipe for it :)

Banana Bread

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 ripe bananas
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 9 x 5 x 3 inch loaf pan.

Cream the sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

In a small bowl, mash the bananas with a fork. Mix in the milk and cinnamon. In another bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Add the banana mixture to the creamed mixture and stir until combined. Add dry ingredients, mixing just until flour disappears.

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Set aside to cool on a rack for 15 minutes. Remove bread from pan, invert onto rack and cool completely before slicing.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Berry Strata

Here is the final recipe from Giada's Everyday Italian, Berry Strata. It's basically an Italian version of the bread pudding. I'm not a big fan of bread pudding, but berry strata, i just loved. The tartness from the frozen mixed berries and orange juice just gives it a refreshing taste. Not to forget the creamy ricotta cheese that's in it too. All these flavors together gives it the right amount of sweetness and tartness. Even the kids enjoyed it. It's a great dish to make for dessert since everything can be pre mixed and refridgerated. And if you don't want berries, feel free to use any fruit of your choice. I used french bread but you could use any type of bread you like. Here's the recipe:)

Berry Strata
From Giada's Everyday Italian

2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons honey
4 large eggs
1/2 cup whole milk ricotta
3 tablespoons sugar
1 cup whole milk
1/4 cup orange juice
4 slices of bread, torn into 1-inch pieces (about 4 cups)
1 (10-ounce) bag frozen mixed berries, thawed and drained

Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Turn off the heat, add the honey, and stir to combine.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl combine the eggs, ricotta, and sugar. Using a fork, mix to combine and beat the eggs. Add the milk, orange juice, butter and honey mixture, and bread. Stir to combine. Gently fold in the berries.

Place the ingredients in a 10-inch round (2-quart) baking dish. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours and up to 12 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Bake the strata until golden on top and baked through, about 40 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Spoon into dishes and serve.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Spicy Tomato Soup

When i think of soup, I'm thinking comfort food, warm, hearty and fulfilling. This recipe was one of 3 recipes aired on Giada's Everyday Italian episode that had the Linguine with Shrimp in Lemon oil. This soup is super easy and is made with marinara sauce. It says to use chicken broth in this recipe. I however have many friends who are vegetarian so i used vegetable broth instead. The flavors were great and the soup with absolutely delicious. It's a perfect dish to have on a cold day with some french bread on the side. I made it for my play date Thursday last week and it was great.Everyone enjoyed it and i saved some for my husband to have for dinner. What more can you ask for after a long work day:) Here's the recipe!

Spicy Tomato Soup
From Everyday Italian on Food Network

* 3 tablespoons olive oil
* 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
* 1 small onion, chopped
* 1 clove garlic, minced
* 1 (26-ounce) jar marinara sauce
* 2 (14-ounce) cans chicken broth
* 1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
* 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
* 1/2 cup pastina pasta (or any small pasta)
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Warm the olive oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the carrots, onion, and garlic and saute until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the jar of marinara sauce, chicken broth, cannellini beans, red pepper flakes, pasta, salt and pepper. Simmer for 10 minutes. Ladle into bowls and serve. (Note: If you do not want the spice, you may eliminate the peppers or add less of it.)