Here are a few photos of the dishes that I have made and for some reason the notes or method of cooking has not coincided with the photo, but I have numbered them and you won’t get confused. If you still do write on the blog and inquire.
1. Salt and Pepper Saute Shrimps in garlic butter with Singaporean Noodles in black bean sauce. Extremely easy and takes hardly 8~10 minutes to prepare i.e., once you have cleaned the shrimps and boiled the noodles for 5 minutes. To Saute it takes not more than 2-3 minutes. Black Bean sauce is available in the Chinese grocery stores. Use a good quality non-stick WOK and wooden spoons.
2. Home made dough – Spinach and Cheese Baked Patties, add milk and butter to the flour and make dough with salt as per taste. Filling could be anything from mince meat to chicken etc., the one in picture below is Spinach and Cheese.
Normally ppl use Paneer, I never use it because its salt-less and tasteless. I use Lebanese Cheese called Anari, don’t use the Greek Feta its very salty and breaks. Whereas Anari does not break and has less salt in it. First you need to slice the cheese and place it in a non-stick frying pan with a touch of oil and place it on the frying pan, once they are golden brown turn it and then repeat the process.
It takes 2-3 minutes do that, slice it into small pieces and mix it with cooked spinach and use it as filling. Making spinach is very easy just chop a clove of garlic and a pinch of cumin seeds in oil and stir fry the chopped spinach add salt later and keep it aside to cool down. Add cheese when its cool and use the whole stuff for filling the patties.
Preheat oven at 350F place patties in a tray, brush them with a little bit of butter and turn them once they are golden brown on one side, repeat for the other side. The whole baking time does not exceed more than 7-8 minutes. Use convection oven for good results. See the color of the patties in photo its golden brown.
3. STEAK MEAT. Making good steaks is very easy and, very difficult. Easy, once you know how to make them, difficult if you don’t know. The most important thing is the quality of meat. Most ppl go after cheap meat without knowing what to buy? Common mistake is, ignorance. Most desi butchers don’t know the name of the right cut and they also don’t even know how to cut meat for steaks? They always say, Baaji take Under-Cut, its very good for steaks. aNO. Don’t even listen to him. Tell him you want Veal Rib Eye or Veal Fillet Mignon, if he doesn’t know tell him “Puth ka Gosht” or ChaaNp. :p
In the picture below you see the meat in two containers, its the Rib Eye Steak with T-Bone. Generally I buy without bone i.e., if I have to fry steaks and T-bones are good for BBQ. So, take a look at the picture below see the quality of meat, it is very good, it’s Veal T-Bone Steak. De-bone it yourself or ask the butcher to de-bone it. Without bone is good for fried steaks, because there is always blood near the bone. In BBQ the blood drops out. Remember they needed to be sliced cross section with a thickness of just about half an inch thick. I have seen badly cut long steaks in PASANDA meat style. Add salt and freshly ground pepper and leave it for about an hour. Before you cook them frying or BBQ, its important that they are at room temperature not frozen or chilled.
4. COOKED STEAK: A Plate of Steaks is ready to serve: In the picture you will see the plate looks very attractive when garnished properly. This picture was taken not with the intention of demonstrating here, I cooked it when I was home alone and took the picture just like that. The things missing in the plate are the greens or the green vegetables. So remember to garnish your plate meticulously and passionately without forgetting the greens.
The Steak is without the bone and its Stir fried in butter on very high heat ONLY 30 seconds each side in a cast iron frying pan. The more you fry it to make it well-done the more hard and rubbery it becomes. Good quality Veal has no blood, its also not pink from inside, so don’t worry. Keep the steaks in a dish, they will shed a little bit of water in the dish. Use that water in making the sauce. Sauces can be made from many things, the most common is by using corn starch and Soy Sauce.
After you have finished frying all the steaks, add a little bit of butter to the pan, pour out the water from the cooked steaks into the pan, add the soy sauce + corn starch + water stirred into the frying pan, keep stirring it gently on medium heat and when its medium thick take it out. Don’t mess up your sauce, it should not be watery or, thick paste. Keep it separately in a sauce pan to pour it on individual plates.
Garnishing is the most important part of any cooking. It increases the appetite of a person when its garnished well. In the plate you see a couple of steaks with sauce under it not over it. Then you see Avocado in Mornay Sauce with a slice of boiled egg. Glazed Pear and Glazed Plum in brown sugar or Jaggery, a baked potato and a slice of tomato. Greens are missing as I have mentioned but, you should not forget it. Like, lettuce, cucumber, celery, broccoli etc., use your imagination. Viola There you go. Garnish the plates individually for every person, most ppl do not know how to serve themselves, so make individual plates. Its ideal for 6~8 ppl and not for a party for 30-40 people.
5. Bong Nihari: The Art of making good Nihari depends on the quality of meat you buy. Remember its once again the quality of meat that is important. Get Veal Shanks or Jarret de Veau or Bong Ka Gosht. Beef tastes good but, the fiber is thick. Also, not everyone is happy with red meat. You must buy the bones especially bone-marrow tastes good, even if one doesn’t like the bone-marrow, never mind you still need bones for making stock. The meat needs to be cooked separately till it is very tender. Take a look at the pictures below Nihari already prepared and ready to serve. The recipe is absolutely from scratch, no Shan Masala in it. Remember you don’t have to add too much chili & ginger, here its just for show its always better to keep all the LAWAZMAT on the side and let people add according to their taste.