Creating Generative Value – Article: Deep Fried and Good for You (NY Times)

Recently, I have come across an article on the New York Times’ website titled Deep Fried and Good for You and obviously, I had to write something about the article. With such a grasping title, I had to read the article to see if truly deep frying was really good at all! Basically in the article, the author narrates how deep frying is good for the health if you follow some ground rules first. Using the right oil for frying or choosing the correct vegetable or meat was some of the guidelines that had to be respected. The author said that deep frying was not costly and gave tops about which oils to use. We have been told that deep frying foods are not good for health because they contain a great amount of fat. But what if the oil we use for frying is olive oil, which is said to be good for health and what if we eat deep fried foods but only occasionally and in moderately?

These questions were answered in the article and I believe that it eating deep fried food is good for the health, considering that fat is one of the most important nutrients used by one body. Moreover, in the article, it was not mentioned if people with weight issues and heart diseases could eat deep fried food as well, considering that they have complications. But I believe that if someone is having a healthy way of living and eating, deep fried foods are good for that person, if deep frying is done with olive oil or the more neutral grape seed oil. In fact, in his article the author made no reference to using ghee for deep frying which I found odd as coming from an Indian family, I have always been told that ghee is way better to use than oil for deep frying. One of the perks of ghee or clarified butter is that it has a high smoking point, which makes it appropriate for deep frying. If done at the right temperature, ghee will have a low retention in the food you are frying. Albeit ghee is healthier for deep frying, its use should be occasional.

Deep frying is good and we can consume deep fried food. In weekends, I love making deep fried chicken or tempura and when I have people coming over, how can you not make deep fried samosas or croquettes or even French fries.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/23/dining/deep-fried-and-good-for-you.html

Bon appétit

– Kritina

Public voice

I have often noticed that some of my friends do not know a thing about cooking. I had friends who did not know what was parsley or cilantro! Moreover, when I was doing Cooking classes at high school, I was surprised to see that a lot of my classmates had never eaten lasagnas or apple pie before (these dishes being Italian and English respectively).

Personally, I think that in Mauritius people have been only cooking dishes that have been in their repertoire or that they had learnt without ever looking to make new things. Lack of time and even resources was a factor that accounted for that. However, now the trends are changing. With the number of culinary magazines today and the omniscient tool that is Internet; people have easier and faster access to foreign dishes. Today, in a country like Mauritius, we do not limit ourselves only to Creole or Mauritian cuisine; we have Italian, French, Arab or even Indian cuisine. The amount of restaurants providing world cuisine in Mauritius has increased around the island.

What people will notice on my blog is that I do not fuss a lot on the recipes. My recipes have been chosen because they are easy to understand and not complex at all. People who very little cooking knowledge and experience will certainly like the recipes as they are great for amateur level. Furthermore, you will have the opportunity to have recipes from a lot of culture. I do not restrict myself to only one cuisine and I am a big believer of fusion cuisine. Readers will find that I give some tips on my blog; tips that would help even the clumsiest of person in a kitchen. Last but not least, the recipes on my blog enclose starters, main dishes as well as deserts and drinks.

My readers will find a lot of courses of the blog to help them and I am also open to the questions and suggestions of my readers. Readers will feel good when they browse through my blog because there is something for everyone, regardless of whether they are a man or woman or they are a cooking genius or amateur. If my readers love cooking and baking, they will try out the recipes on my blog and will bring happiness and joy to their family, friends or lovers.

Coming up with some new recipes!

-Krit

My Personal Interest – Cooking?

Hello everyone! Whenever I attend a party or have friends over at home, I always end up cooking something whether a main dish, a dessert or a cake. That tells you a lot about me and cooking! Ever since I was 6 years old, I would be fascinated to watch my mum cook in the kitchen. In those days, she was taking a cooking course and after each session, she would re-try the dish at home.

I will never forget the comforting and appetising aroma of mum’s ‘pain au chocolat’ or ‘croissant.’ I wanted to re-create the various gestures and techniques of cutting, rolling and baking that she mastered and taught me. That was how I discovered cooking and when I turned 8 or 10, I wanted to start trying out cooking myself. She would let me help her in the kitchen and that was definitely the best part. Actually no, the best part was eating whatever she had baked! 🙂

Growing up in that environment made me want to learn and made me love cooking from a young age. I baked my first cake when I was 11! That gives you an idea how much cooking forms part of my integral life. For me cooking is not just baking dishes, it is an art of life or as sacred as a religion. I absolutely love cooking because it has the power to gather many people around and it also brings happiness and joie de vivre.

A lot of times, all my relatives come over to my place and mum and I bake a lot of good things because we know that to win over people, you have to win their stomachs first!  🙂 (My gran would always say that to win a man’s heart you have to feed him with delicious food first!) Seeing the face of people when you give them a birthday cake or a simple dish brings joy to my heart and makes me realise that the greatest pleasures in life come from simple little things. Cooking has taught me perseverance, to keep trying when I fail and above all it has taught me how to bring happiness and pleasure in the lives of my loved ones!

Keep cooking & baking!

Bon Appétit

-Krit

Fudge Brownies with Oreo Cookies

Ingredients
165g/5½oz butter, plus extra for greasing
200g/7oz dark chocolate, grated or finely chopped
3 free-range eggs
2 free-range egg yolks
1 vanilla pod, seeds only (or alternatively 2 tsp vanilla extract)
165g/5½ oz soft light brown sugar
2 tbsp plain flour
1 tbsp cocoa powder
pinch salt
154g/5½oz pack chocolate biscuits, such as Oreos, broken into quarters
icing sugar, for dusting

Preparation method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4. Grease a 20cm/8in square baking tin with butter, then line with baking paper with the paper overlapping the sides a little.
  2. Melt the butter in a pan over a medium heat. When the butter has melted, remove the pan from the heat and add the grated (or chopped) chocolate. Leave to stand for a few minutes, or until the chocolate melts, and then stir together. Alternatively, you can put the chocolate and butter in a bowl and melt in the microwave in 25-second blasts, stirring well each time.
  3. Whisk the eggs, egg yolks and vanilla together in a large bowl until the eggs begin to get light and fluffy. Add the sugar in two additions, whisking between each. Pour it around the side of the egg mix so as not to knock out the air that has been whisked in. Keep whisking until the mixture becomes stiffer. Once the egg mixture is ready, pour the chocolate into it – again around the sides so as not to knock the air out.
  4. Add the flour, cocoa powder, salt and a third of the biscuits and stir until fully combined, then pour the mixture into the prepared tin. Scatter the remaining biscuits over the top, pressing them in slightly. Bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 25–30 minutes. The middle should be very so slightly gooey. Leave the brownies to cool in the tin – the top will sink and crack a little.
  5. Pull the brownies out using the overlapping paper and cut into squares. Dust with icing sugar.

***Hello peeps!! So sorry for not posting for so long, I was overwhelmed by the recent semester at uni! Well  I’m on holidays and I will find some time posting things! 🙂 Btw thanks everybody, I have passed the unit for which this blog was created!!! 😀 Big thanks to all of you and may god bless you all! 🙂 Ever since I’ve been on holidays I was mainly lying in my bed, sleeping, catching up all those lost nights spent working/ studying. This weekend I had the chance to bake these delicious brownies, a recipe I saw from Lorraine Pascale’s show! Hail to her!  🙂 These brownies are simply delicious and sinful!! The Oreo cookies in it make it perfect! My only suggestions and comments would be to diminish the amount of sugar in it! If like me you don’t like when food is so sweet that it makes you wanna puke, PLEASE diminish the sugar quantity! Besides, the Oreo cookies are super sweet, don’t forget that! If you want to make this recipe richer and fuller, serve with a hot custard sauce or ice cream, but then I prefer it plain with a cup of tea or cold milk!  ‘A l’anglaise’ I might add! 😛 Of course you can substitute the cream biscuits with pecans nuts, almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts or even cherries but then we want the cream and fudge brownies here 😛 I really hope you will enjoy this recipe as much as I loved it! Serves of 16 is certainly not enough!! Double up the recipe to please your friends, families and kids as well! Trust me, they are all going to pig on these amazing brownies!!

Bon Appétit always!!

-Yours alive-and-back-from-the-dead Krit 😉

Mini Chocolate Cakes with Praline and Red Fruits

Ingredients:   Serves: 4 

90g Dark Chocolate

100g Butter

3 Eggs

100g Castor Sugar

25g Flour

20g Praline

1 mixed red fruits tray (red currants, raspberry, cherry, etc)

Icing Sugar for Decoration

Methods:

  1. Melt dark chocolate with butter, either in a microwave or ‘bain marie. When melted, leave to cool for a few minutes.
  2. Add the beaten eggs, and sugar and then gently fold in the flour and praline.
  3. Pour in a silicon mould or in a tin one, or in greased/floured ramekins. Let the ‘dough’ rest  in refrigerator.
  4. Preheat oven to 180 C. Bake the mini cakes for 8 minutes (The centre of the cake should remain soft and mellow, almost fluid and wet).
  5. Leave to cool until warm and unmold delicately.
  6. Top with red fruits and dredge with icing sugar.

***Okay! I know this seems to be a complex dessert but let me tell you that it’s worth all the pain in the world!! First of all, you are not obliged to use praline in this recipe; modify it with whichever ingredients such as toasted nuts, almonds etc., that crack under the teeth and give this dish a crunchy texture in mouth! 🙂 You have to let the cake mixture or dough rest in the refrigerator, overnight or for some hours as well! Letting it rest will only make it softer and like deep fudge! Secondly, you may use cupcakes for this recipe especially if you are making this for a party, and so on. Now, for a more festive ‘look’, use a crown-shaped cake tin. Or, you may simply use a rectangle tin and cut the cakes into squares and mount them all in a nice way and decorate with red fruits and sprinkle with a snow like powder of icing sugar!! 🙂 You may as well serve these hot, when they are wet and shiny inside with some nice scoops of vanilla ice cream!!! These mini cakes inspire a festive, joyous and homely atmosphere and they are perfect to bake if you are far from home and are feeling homesick or plain hungry for a nice killer chocolate delight! 😛 Lastly, I would suggest that you use a nice chocolate, 70% Cocoa is excellent for cooking, because in the end, the cake’s going to bring out the taste and flavour and quality of the chocolate that you have used, why then use a low quality, greasy and one which contains more sugar than cocoa in it! I sincerely hope you like this dessert!!! It is a small precious treasured dessert!

Bon Appétit

-K

Spiced Honeyed Pineapple and Mango Bites

Ingredients:    Serves: 6

1 Pineapple

1 Mango

20g Butter

50g Honey

1/2 teaspoon curry powder or  ground cinnamon

1/2 lemon

1 teaspoon sesame seeds

1 star anise

Methods:

  1. Preheat oven to 160º C.
  2. Peel the pineapple, remove the ‘eyes’ and spikes and cut into 1cm or 2cm sized cubes. Peel the mango and diced int big cubes as well.
  3. Melt half of the butter in a casserole, add mango and cook for about 5-10 minutes in low flame.
  4. Add half of the honey, then half of the curry powder or cinnamon while tossing the mango, so as to avoid crystallization of honey. Remove from heat and set aside in a bowl.
  5. Heat the same casserole or pan and put the remaining butter and honey on the lowest flame and caramelize the pineapple cubes, sprinkle the remaining curry or cinnamon. After a few minutes, remove from heat and set aside.
  6. In the same casserole, arrange the mango in the bottom, cover with pineapple bites, drizzle with lemon juice. Add the star anise, cover the casserole and cook in hot oven for 40 minutes.
  7. Before serving, sprinkle with sesame seeds and vanilla ice cream.

***This dish is so comfy! When this type of dish is in an oven, believe me the whole kitchen will be invaded by a nice spicy smell! Your kitchen will emanate odours and scents like it’s a Morrocan Spice shop!! 🙂 Of course your guests will be utterly charmed by these embalming fragrances! They will think you made a tacky dessert when as you have noticed, this is very easy yet classy as dessert! If you serve this after a light dinner, and there still is some place left in your guest’s stomach, do try to serve this dish with a crème anglaise or a custard sauce; one which has a pouring consistency! Not a porridge one! Also, kids will adore theses bites served with little madeleines cakes and custard sauce! You can eventually replace the fruits with plums, apricots or peaches, apples or pears! Choose whatever you like but I prefer this combination as it screams tropical fruits and we can only think of summer , the sun and countries surrounded by the deep blue sea! (Thank God I live in Mauritius 😀 )… When served hot with a freezing vanilla ice cream, the contrast of temperature makes the ice cream melt quickly and things like that are culinary delights for the eyes and palate! 🙂 Pretty simple things, ingredients or dishes can elicit a smile, admiration or even love from your guests or from yourself! You can only thank yourself for daring to cook, to try new recipes and share what you have learned with your loved ones! After all this is what cooking is about! 🙂 Hope you’ll devour this sweet and spicy dish! 😀

Bon Appétit

-K

Minty Green Salad

Ingredients:    Serves 4

1/2 An Ice berg Lettuce

1 Bunch of Watercress

1 Green Pepper

1 Tablespoon freshly chopped Mint leaves

50 ml French Dressing

Methods:

  1. Wash lettuce and tear leaves.
  2. Wash and trim watercress.
  3. Wash, de-seed and cut pepper into rings. (personally i like it diced or finely cut into strips)
  4. Put lettuce, watercress, green pepper and dressing into a large mixing bowl and gently toss the ingredients together.
  5. A French Dressing is simply 2 tablespoons extra virgin oil, 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar, salt, pepper, 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard, a pinch of sugar and few drops of worcester sauce(optional). Use a shaker to emulsify the dressing so that it has a ‘cloudy’ texture.
  6. Sprinkle with chopped mint leaves. Serve immediately if mixed with dressing!

***In case you don’t have lettuce or the watercress at your disposal,  you may then use mâche or any other salad green. Make sure the taste is balanced though! Well this is a basic kind of recipe for a green salad. You can definitely add a lot of other ingredients and modify this recipe. For instance you may add feta cheese or parmesan, even toasted croutons, and even Spinach!!! Please savor this healthy salad with a grilled steak or grilled chicken and a glass of homemade iced tea and why not accompany that with a nice golden brown potato mash! 🙂 I find this recipe excellent for a brunch with friends and even kids will like this! Of course this is only a starter for famished people 😛 So make sure you prepare something else if you are receiving friends over because this is ultimately only salad!! and we have a hearty appetite! 🙂 A BBQ is perfect along with this salad, so is a soup if it’s a party dish! 🙂  I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as i love it! 🙂

Bon Appétit

-K

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