"This is a journey of my life since I was all of 12 yrs when I started my hand in cooking to now with displays of my learning and creations of recipes from around the world. My inspiration and role model has always been my Mum who has always created dishes from around the world and excellently well. I do not believe I would ever match to her culinary skills. I remember the times she could cook and bake almost 4-5 dishes in one go without ever letting one go under cooked or burnt! I was born and raised in Dubai, UAE and recently moved to India for family reasons. Kitchenette just means that over the decades, my kitchen has changed from that of my mum's to my uncle and aunt's, to my home in UAE and now in India. Pala't'te, describes both global cuisines ('Palatte'-diverse flavours) and pleasing diverse 'Palates'."

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Celebrating Life.... Creamy Vegetable Soup

No excuses this time for being late on my recipe posts. I am thankful that I have a full life, filled with multitude of things to do. One such wonderful opportunity that came my way again was to cook at my little girl's school. They have started a new cooking lab and I had the opportunity to impart some cooking learning to a bunch of wonderful second graders.

The thing I love about my girl's school is how they inspire the kids to inquire and learn. Kids are curious by nature and to mould them into thinking out of the box is something I simply love. I love that I have a creative, excited little girl who is always willing to explore, learn and better herself.

The Lead Ma'am and I chose a soup to make this time owing to the end of monsoons. Also since there have been a couple of rains off and on causing the temperature to lower. A lot of kids had been falling ill too with cold, cough or flu. So a soup seemed apt.

This soup is a Thai inspired one. But since kids come from different households where either they are vegetarians or cannot eat onions, eggs, etc. or where the kid has peanut allergies or generally don't like things  like ginger, I avoided using them. Kids are also picky on things like bell peppers, etc. So although it is Thai inspired requiring the use of galangal, bell pepper, peanuts, etc I avoided using any of it.

Carrots are liked by most kids and I know many kids who prefer broccoli these days to cauliflower. So a small portion of brocolli, chopped finely was used. Each kid was asked to bring 1-2 ingredients. I loved the excitement of the kids as each ingredient went into the wok. In fact because of all the beta carotene (through carrots), the soup got a nice orangish colour and coupled with the coriander leaves, the kids who had just celebrated their Indian Independence day celebrations were inspired to tell me what the colour of the soup reminded them of, which was the Indian Flag.

Apart from maybe one or two kids who wanted chicken in their soup, the rest even though non-vegetarians liked the soup for its creaminess. I chose to use two homemade coconut milks, the 2nd milk to cook the vegetables in and the 1st milk to add at the end just warmed up and not boiled which added to its creaminess. How to freshly extract the coconut milk is explained here.

That's me by the way. Extra happy with the kids :)

If you want to make the full version, you can used crushed ginger or galangal, lemongrass, either sriracha chili or green chili, bell peppers finely diced and yellow onion. You can also take a non vegetarian option by adding boneless chicken diced small or boneless fish diced small.

You need:

  • 2 cups of grated carrots (about 4-6 carrots depending on size)
  • 1 cup of broccoli, florets separated into tiny florets
  • 4-6 cloves of garlic, grated using a hand grater
  • White pepper preferred (if not available you can use regular black pepper) powder - 1-2 tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 medium coconut gratings (extract two milks)
  • 1 bunch of cilantro or coriander leaves, diced well
  • 1 cup of sweet corn
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 cup of drinking water (set aside some more if required)

The Make:
Preparation time: 10-15 minutes | Cook time: approx. 20 minutes | Makes about 4-6 medium sized bowls 

1. In a large wok, heat about 2 tbsp of coconut oil and add the carrot gratings. Saute for about 2-3 minutes on medium-low heat.
2. Next add the broccoli  and sweet corn. Saute for another 2-3 minutes. Add a sprinkle of salt and the pepper. Mix well. Add 1 cup of drinking water.
3. Add the second (thin) milk and half cover the wok. If you have a wok with a glass lid containing a steam hole, then cover fully and keep the heat at medium-low heat. Allow the vegetables to cook for 10 minutes. Add the water and if required add more than 1 cup. Do not overdo it else it will not turn out as creamy.
4. Grate the garlic over the uncovered wok and stir well. Add half of the chopped cilantro and simmer for 5 minutes.
5.  Lower the heat and then add the first coconut milk. Add the remaining coriander leaves and watch over the pot to allow to heat up. Do not boil. Do a salt check and add more if required.

It is better to add just a sprinkle of salt at first as adding to taste levels at first may not balance the dish as the coconut milk tends to sweeten the soup. So you may end up adding much more salt than is required for the soup. You could also cook the vegetables with just the water at first, blend it with a hand held or regular blender and then return it to the wok to cook in the coconut milk and finish off with the first thick coconut milk. Since there was no blender available, I had opted for the non-blending option.

Hope your kids and you enjoy this soup. Do let me know how it turns out. You can also mail me on gginazkitchenette@gmail or visit my Facebook page or Twitter page. We are also on Pinterest and Instagram now.

Monday, 20 March 2017

Spiced Homemade Wine

Cheeeeeers to a New Year 2017! Ahem, yes I know we are well into the New Year but mine seems to have just begun!

After a cleansing process that the Good Lord has performed in my life recently, I am now in a happy state of mind after the many, many months of downs and outs. On that note, dear readers,

Happy International Happiness Day!

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Crispy Chocolate Surprise Balls #FoodieExtravaganza

Aaaah I'm back and for one of my favourites 'Chocolate'! Thank you Kathleen for my favourite Chocolate theme in time for me to pick up the pace on my food blog as well.

Kathleen Coe Clegg is the wonderful hostess of our October's theme 'Chocolate' over at Foodie Extravaganza. She is the owner of 'Fearlessly Creative Mammas', a wonderful blog sharing recipes from her home.

This time I wanted to do something similar to cake pops except it is presented a lot differently.

I enjoyed making this treat as I knew my little girl would love it.

Mango Jam #noPectin

It has been a while since I last posted a recipe on the G'Gina's Kitchenette. You know what they say, 'When life hands you lemons make lemonade!( or in this case use it as a part of your Jam - I know PJ)' But what do you do when it hands you death, accident, unwanted troubles and family and friends' health issues?

Well not to burden you with the details but I have had quite a few check in on me..I lost my Dad-in-law in July and have had some issues with family health. Also an unfortunate accident happened, one that I will learn from. I had once lost all hope. But I trust God will bring peace and favour to us.

Friday, 17 June 2016

Pearl Spot Fish Pan fried in a Banana leaf (Kuttanadan Karimeen Pollichathu) #FishFridayFoodies

This month's Fish Friday Foodies' event is 'Pan or Deep Fried Fish' chosen by April of Angels Home Sweet Homestead. Thanks April for choosing this theme.

I have always wanted to make the Pearl spot in  our traditional Keralite manner. It tastes awesome and is packed with flavour. Not only that it takes very little oil/fat to make it. I tried the traditional Kuttanadan recipe. Read more about the Kuttanad region of Kerala (India) here

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Celebrating G'Gina's Kitchenette's Fourth Blogiversary: Mango Jam Rolls with Cremé, Fresh Mangoes and Jam filling #BreadBakers

This challenge could not have been announced at a better time when Mangoes are in plentiful! So I got to try many a recipe involving the delicious Mango this year.

It is Monsoons here now as I type this so the number and variety of mangoes have significantly dwindled. I explored recipes with at least 4-5 types of mangoes this year.

I could not post my Bread Bakers' recipe in time for May's event of theme ' Rolls' owing to the issue with the Daylight savings time. I had made Cinnabon-style Cinnamon Rolls. I missed by an hour or so. So this time I posted well in advance.

Friday, 10 June 2016

Ramadan Kareem : Iftar 2016 : Mango Soufflé with Caramelised Ginger and Caramel

Ramadan Kareem!

My earlier batch of Mango Soufflé that I made and posted to celebrate G'Gina's Kitchenette crossing over a 100,000 page views was made slightly differently. The flavour was varied too in the second make. In fact I preferred the second one to the first.

I have always enjoyed making desserts for my loved ones and when someone asks to taste a dessert of mine, I tend to go all out and whip up a huge batch. Funnily enough, it turns out better than I ever imagined and more than the original recipe I created. So when it was mentioned how I had shared my first batch with a couple of my neighbour friends I was asked to make it again for a few more of my neighbour friends.

I made this recipe for my dear and sweet friends and neighbour Zaira Shaan, Shaan Rahman and their all too adorable son Rayaan Shaan (Rayu darlin'). Actually my chief taster was darling 5 year old Rayu who said he loves desserts and when I asked which one, he said yellow one with caramel. I asked if the yellow meant Mango as being Mango season it was all about mangoes for me! Zai prompted he meant cremé caramel.