Monthly Archives: November 2012

Spicy Stir Fried Lo Mein Noodles

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz lo mein noodles
  • 7 oz (half a package) water packed extra firm tofu
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 8 oz bean sprouts
  • 4 oz sugar snap peas
  • 1 large portabella mushroom
  • 1 head baby bok choy
  • 2 teaspoons cooking oil
  • 1 teaspoon chili bean sauce
  • Few drops of each pure dark sesame oil and chili oil (this is also based on sesame seed oil)
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon low sodium soy sauce

 

Method:

  • Drain and wash tofu under cold water and wrap in a paper towel and leave aside for about 10 minutes
  • Cook noodles according to package directions (boil water and once the water comes to a rolling boil, add noodles and cook.  According to the package directions, it was about 4 minutes. But I had to cook for about 9 minutes).
  • Once cooked, run the cooked noodles under cold water and drain.  Set aside
  • Cut drained tofu into 1 inch cubes
  • Spray a little bit of oil to a cookie sheet and add the tofu and toast in a toaster oven until golden brown (about 10 minutes)
  • Wash and snip off both ends of sugar snap peas.  Cut the larger ones into 2 pieces crosswise.
  • Wash and drain the sprouts (normally, I remove the brown color root tip just for the sake of satisfaction – oh well my aunt taught me that)
  • Break bok choy in to single leaves and separate the thick stem from the leaves.  Tear the leaves into rough big pieces
  • Chop the bok choy stem cross wise into about 1 inch pieces.
  • Clean portabella mushroom with a tissue and cut into thin slices
  • Place a large mouthed pan on stove over medium flame and add  cooking oil
  • Once oil is hot, add garlic and sauté until lightly golden
  • Add sugar snap peas and stir fry for about 2 minutes
  • Now add the bok choy stems and mushrooms and cook for another 2 minutes
  • Add sprouts and bok choy leaves and cook just for a minute
  • Add bean sauce, sesame oil, chili oil, tofu, and noodles and mix well. Turn off the stove
  • Mix lemon juice, soy sauce, and sugar in a bowl and pour over the noodles and mix thoroughly
  • Season with salt and serve immediately
  • Serves 2.

Lemon Scented Cranberry Scones

For some reason I always thought scones are a difficult thing to make.  I think I tried to make scones couple of years ago and it was a disaster.  That’s all, I stopped and never thought about it.  So with the Thanksgiving long weekend, I had some extra time and I wanted to make something different.  And here I am typing up my cranberry scones which came so good -soft, puffy and moist.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 4 tablespoons cold butter cut into small pieces
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup milk (whole or low fat.  Not skim)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure lemon extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup dried cranberries

Method:

  • Lightly butter a large cookie tray and set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 400° F.
  • In a bowl mix flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar
  • Add butter to the flour and blend with fingers or a pastry cutter until the texture becomes coarse meal.
  • In a separate bowl lightly beat the eggs.  Add milk, lemon zest, lemon extract, and vanilla extract.
  • Mix in the egg mixture into the four mixture and make into a moist dough.
  • Fold in the cranberries and mix well so that cranberries are distributed throughout the dough.
  • With a spoon (a spoon size of 2 tablespoons), scoop dough on to the cookie sheet.
  • Gently form the dough into a round ball.
  • Proceed making this until all the dough is finished. Make sure you leave about 2 inch space between the scones.
  • Bake until golden – about 15 minutes
  • Cool on wire rack
  • Makes – 10 Scones.

Note: You might have read through out my blog that I always reduce the amount of sugar in all my sweet dishes.  So same thing for here as well.  This scone is mildly sweet.  If you prefer a sweeter version, you can add an extra 2 tablespoons sugar.

For an alternate version, try with orange zest and orange extract instead of lemon.  You can also replace cranberries with raisins or for a change mix both of them half of each.

Quick Apple Tart

Ingredients

  • 1/2 of 1.1lbs pkg, Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Sheets (1 sheet)
  • 2 small green apples (granny smith)
  • 3 teaspoons sugar
  • about 1 teaspoon butter melted
  • Confectioners sugar for dusting
  • Flour for dusting

Method

  • Thaw pastry sheet at room temperature for about 45 minutes, or until easy to handle.
  • Preheat oven to 400 F.
  • Peel and core apple.
  • Slice apples cross wise into 1/4 inch slices.
  • Dust a little bit flour to a cutting board and place the puff pastry sheet on the cutting board
  • The puff pastry sheet is normally folded into 3 folds.  Cut lengthwise at the fold into 3 long strips.

  • Place overlapping slices of apples diagonally down the middle of each tart and continue making diagonal rows on both sides  until the pastry is covered with apple slices.  Leave about 1 inch space at both ends of the sheets.
  • Brush with melted butter and sprinkle 1 teaspoon sugar to each pastry sheet.
  • Bake for about 45 minutes to 1 hour or until the pastry is browned and the edge of the apples start to brown.
  • When the tart is done, cool and dust with confectioners sugar.

Don’t worry, when you take the apple tart from the oven, the apples may look quite dry.  But it when you take a bite, it will be crunchy and juicy.

I tend to reduce the amount the sugar.  If you prefer, sweet you can sprinkle extra sugar before baking.  Also the sweetness depends on the apple as well.

Happy Deepavali Wishes