FESTIVE indulgences

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Offline Rozina Akter

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FESTIVE indulgences
« on: August 04, 2013, 04:29:37 PM »
Ramadan is a time when families come together. After 30 days of abstinence, Eid gives us an occasion to celebrate and Eid meals are a big part of this festivity. The following special recipes could be cooked as an entire Eid menu, complete with rice, chicken, beef, and dessert or simply as an alternative iftar dish.
Carrot and coriander soup
(Serves 4)
1 tsp oil
1 cup finely chopped onions
2 cups cubed carrots
1 cup finely chopped fresh coriander
6 cups water
Salt and pepper to taste
Carrot strips (for garnish)
Heat oil in a pot; add the onions and sauté on a medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the carrots and ½ cup of coriander and sauté for another 3 to 4 minutes. Add salt and 6 cups of water and mix well. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to low. Continue cooking until carrots are soft.
Remove from heat, and when slightly cool, blend in a blender till smooth.
Return the soup to the pot, add the pepper and remaining ½ cup of coriander, mix well, and bring to a boil for another 1 or 2 minutes.
Serve hot garnished with carrot strips.

Yakhni polao
1½ cups pilaf (polao) rice (soaked)
600g chicken (cut into 2 inch pieces)
1 tbsp oil
1 tbsp ghee
4 or 5 cloves
4 black cardamom
4 or 5 green cardamom
2 cinnamon (one inch sticks)
4 bay leaves
2 tbsp black peppercorn
½ cup fried onions (beresta)
1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
2 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tbsp aniseed
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 chicken stock cubes
½ cup yoghurt (whisked)
Salt to taste
Almonds (chopped) for garnish
Soak the pilaf grains. Tie coriander seeds, aniseed, cumin seeds, 2 bay leaves and 1 tablespoon black peppercorns in a Muslin cloth (without making the bag too packed) and keep aside. Heat oil and ghee in a nonstick pot and add cloves, black cardamom, green cardamom and cinnamon; sauté till fragrant.
Add 2 bay leaves and 1 tablespoon black peppercorn, and sauté for a minute. Add chicken, cover and cook over low heat for 7 to 8 minutes. Add fried onions, ginger-garlic paste and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes. Add 4 cups of hot water and mix well.
Now add the spice bag to the pot. Add chicken stock cubes, yoghurt, salt and the pilaf rice, and mix well. Cover and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, or till both the rice and chicken are cooked. Serve hot, garnished with chopped almonds and fried onions.
Muragh mussalam
1 whole chicken including the organs (cleaned and washed)
2 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)
½ kg yoghurt (beaten till creamy consistency)
1 cup fried onions (beresta)
For the marinade:
1 tbsp poppy seeds
8 sticks cinnamon
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp shahi jeera (black cumin seeds)
10 black peppercorns
2 pods black cardamom
7 pods green cardamom
7 cloves
4” piece fresh ginger
1 garlic (whole)
6 to 8 red chillies (whole)
Salt to taste
Grind all the ingredients for the marinade into a paste. Chop the heart, liver and kidneys into small pieces. Marinate the entire chicken by smearing it with the paste, both inside and outside, as well as over the chopped organs, for at least an hour.
In a large pot, heat the ghee. Pour in the chicken and chopped organs with the marinade, and fry till brown. Add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Cover, and cook on low heat till tender. Add the yoghurt and fried onions, and simmer for 10 minutes.

Sheer khurma
After the restraint of Ramadan, this indulgent dessert is a special treat. It’s also a great way to use any leftover dates. The vermicelli is not the center of this popular Middle Eastern Eid dish, and usually the nuts and mixed fruits like dates stand out more. As milk (sheer in Farsi) is the main ingredient, use the freshest and purest available.
1 litre milk
1 cup sugar
¼ kg vermicelli
¼ kg ghee
½ tsp cardamom powder
A few strands of saffron
½ cup dates (chopped)
½ cup nuts, dry fruits, seeds (almonds, cashew nuts, peanuts, pistachios, raisins, watermelon seeds, mask melon seeds, etc.)
Soak the nuts in water overnight. Peel and chop the nuts. Fry the nuts and raisins in some ghee over low heat, until light brown, and keep aside. Bring milk to a boil and stir continuously, reducing the quantity to almost half. Add sugar, cardamom powder and saffron, stir and keep aside.
In a thick bottomed dish, fry the vermicelli in ghee over medium heat, until light brown. Add the milk to the vermicelli and stir for few minutes till it is soft and cooked. Add the fried nuts, dried fruits and seeds.
Garnish with nuts and dry fruits. Serve hot or chilled.
Rozina Akter
Assistant Professor
Department Of Business Administration