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November 2011

Wonton a Wonton ?


Chicken wontons plated 3
Chicken Wonton

Even though I am Indian and comfort food means dal chawal  I find wontons rank a close second, and sometimes, I am guilty to admit, they take precedence over the traditional and nostalgic fare of my birth.

Being no fan of fast food, i.e the oily stodge you get in many places, filled with dubious ingredients, I have to make these at home.

You will be surprised what a painless and quick job this is, especially if you freeze in extra wonton wrappers.

How to make the wrappers:

Makes 24


1 egg

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 cups maida/ flour, sifted

1/3 to 1/2 cup water

Beat the egg and salt together with the salt. Add half the water.
In a bowl put all the flour. Make a hole  in the centre and add the egg and water mixture. Add more water, if required, to make a ball of dough. The dough should not be sticky .
Knead the dough, like you would chapathi dough, for a few minutes till elastic.
Cover and let it rest for 30 minutes.
Make 24 equal parts of the ball of dough.  Roll out each ball till very, very thin.You can make as many as you like and freeze them till you need to use them. 

125 gms chicken mince

2 green onions chopped fine

2 tbsp grated carrot (optional)

1 tsp grated ginger

1 tsp sesame oil

2 tsp soya sauce

1/2 tsp Pepper

Mix all the ingredients above and put one heaped teaspoon in the centre of each wonton wrapper.Seal with the help of a brush of water on the edges.

Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Gently lower each wonton into the boiling water. They drop to the bottom of the pan initially.When they float to the top the wontons are done, about 2-3 minutes.

Sprinkle with peanut oil to coat and to prevent the wontons sticking together


2 teaspoon peanut oil

1  tbsp sesame seeds / til

1 tsp ginger grated

6 green onions chopped fine

1 tbsp soya sauce

Heat the oil and fry the sesame seeds for a minute. Add the ginger and the chopped green onions. Saute for a minute. Add the sauces and oil , stir well and use for garnish on top of the wontons.

 These turn out so well and it is so, so simple.Just writing about it makes me want to make up another batch of wontons.

Aubergine, Baingan Pickle


Aubergines Baingans


500 gms brinjal ,cubed

20 gms salt, for marinating

50 gms peeled garlic

40 gms fresh ginger,

Peel both and make into a paste.

25 gms tamarind paste.Made fresh.

50 gms jaggery/ gur, grated

20 gms chilli powder

5 gms black pepper

5 gms rai / mustard seed

3 gms methi /fenugreek,

Roast all three and powder.


elaichi /cardomom

1inch stick dalchini /cinnamon

2 cloves .

Powder all three

50 ml vinegar

40 gms salt for pickling

150 ml.


Marinate the cubed brinjal in 20 gms salt for 4 hours. Squeeze out the water released and keep.

Stir fry the salted brinjal in 2 tbsp of oil till tender and set aside.

Heat 2 tsp oil and pop the mustard seeds. Add the ginger garlic paste to the mustard seeds and saute for a minute or two.

Add some more oil to the same pan, heat it and then add the tamarind paste, vinegar, jaggery and salt.

Bring to the boil and allow to thicken over a high flame.

Now add the fried brinjal and the remaining oil and cook till blended adding the spices . Continue to cook for a few minutes. Remove from fire when the mixture becomes dry and the oil seperates.


This pickle lasts for 2 months.

Courtesy: Usha's Pickle Digest



Green Bean Casserole- A New Way with an Old and Worn out dish


I can't figure out why nobody likes green beans.

Coming from a country where green beans were full of string and inedible just ten years ago,I am so thankful for them today ,in their new version, available everywhere, and known as "Frash Bean" i.e. french beans they are wonderfuly juicy and flavourful.

They are great as an accompaniment to any meat or poultry dish, not just on Thanksgiving but all through the year.

Here is one of my favourite ways of cooking them.


500 gms green beans, topped and tailed.

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

250 gms/ 1 cup tomatoes chopped

1 tbsp tomato paste

1/2 tsp sugar

Salt And black pepper to taste

1/2 cup water

1 tbsp chopped parsley


Heat the oil and suate the onions till soft about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and stir for a another couple of minutes.Now add the rest of the ingredients except the beans and parsley and cook covered, on low heat for 10 minutes.

Add the beans and the parsley, cover again and cook for about 20 minutes till the beans are tender.

Serve hot or cold garnished with a  teaspoon of walnut oil.

This is easy and YUM.