Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Your guide to Thai curries

Thai curry is renowned around the world as the most famous Thai dish. These are either water based or coconut based curries. The numerous Thai coconut-based curries better known in the West as red, green, yellow, panang and masamam are extremely flavourful but a distinct taste. In Thailand these curries are known as gaeng phet (red), gaeng kiow wahn (green curry), gaeng leuang (yellow), gaeng phanaeng (panang) and gaeng massaman (masamam).

The green curry is the most famous amongst these. This aromatic curry is endowed with coconut goodness and delicious Thai flavours. Not only is this a delight to the taste buds but also very easy to make.

Thai curries

Ingredients
•750 g skinless free-range chicken thighs
•400 g mixed oriental mushrooms
•groundnut oil
•1 organic chicken stock cube
•1 x 400g tin of light coconut milk
•2 limes
•200 g mangetout
•6 kaffir lime leaves
•½ a bunch fresh Thai basil

For Curry Paste:
•2 shallots
•2 lemongrass stalks
•5cm piece of ginger
•4 cloves of garlic
•1 teaspoon ground cumin
•4 green Bird\'s eye chillies
•2 tablespoons fish sauce
•½ a bunch of fresh coriander

Method:
1.For the curry paste:
•place peeled and roughly chopped garlic, shallots and ginger into a food processor.
•Add finely chopped lemongrass to the processor after removing the tough outer leaves.
•Trim the chillies and along with the cumin and half the coriander (stalks and all) add to the food processor.
•Blitz until finely chopped.
•Add the fish sauce and blitz again.
2.In a large pan on a medium flame, heat 1 tablespoon of oil. To it add 2.5cm chicken strips and fry until they start to turn golden, then transfer to a plate.
3.Cut mushrooms into even pieces and fry them until golden. Transfer to a plate using a slotted spoon.
4.On medium-low heat stir the Thai green paste in a pan for 4 to 5 minutes.
5.Pour coconut milk and 400ml of boiling water, stock cube and add the lime leaves.
6.With the pan on high flame, gently bring the mixture to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes until reduced slightly.
7.Reduce the heat to low before adding the chicken and mushrooms, and cook until the chicken is cooked.
8.Add the mangetout for the final 2 minutes.
9.Season with sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, roughly chopped basil leaves and remaining coriander leaves.
10.Serve with lime wedges and steamed rice.

Other curries:
The curries have different flavours from each other and can be identified on the basis of their colours. The curries owe their colour to the curry pastes they are made from. Although the method of preparation is the same for all, the ingredients of the curry paste differ. The core ingredients lending the colour to the pastes are:

Red curry:
Red curry, made from the red curry paste, comprises dried red chillies as its main ingredient. In addition it usually has shrimp paste which enhances the flavour & turmeric which enhances the colour of the curry.

Panang curry:
Panang curry is named after the island off Malaysia’s West coast. It is a richer, sweeter and drier curry with lesser use of coconut milk than the red or green curry. However, Panang curry is topped with thick coconut cream and peanuts are also sometimes added to the curry paste, making this curry especially popular with foreigners.

Masamman Curry:
Masamman curry is a thick stew-like curry, mild in taste, made of Persian influenced dried spices making it unique amongst Thai curries. Unlike other Thai curries, masamman curry itself includes peanuts and whole spices such as cinnamon, white cardamom and nutmeg.  The slightly sweet taste comes from the roasted spices.

Monday, 27 February 2017

5 Party Perfect Recipes

5 Party-Perfect recipes to help you snack like a star on Oscar night. From chocolate popcorn to Ricotta cheese pizza, you’ll be satisfied all night while watching the biggest award show of the year.

Tomato egg salad


Tomato egg salad

Ingredients:

•3-4 large ripe tomatoes  
•4 hardboiled eggs
Basil
•Salt, pepper
•Healthy Alternatives olive oil

Instructions:

1.Cut the tomatoes in 4 halves and place them in a plate.
2.Cut the eggs in half, and place them on top of the tomatoes.
3.Season with salt and pepper and garnish with torn basil leaves.
4.Drizzle some olive oil & serve.


Double decker sandwich  

Ingredients:

•3 slices of L’exclusif multigrain bread.
•1 tomato, cut in slices
•1 onion, cut in slices
•1 cucumber cut in slices
•4 slices of Ham
•2 slices of cheese
•2-3 lettuce leaves
Parsley to garnish
•Butter to toast

Double decker sandwich

Instructions:

Take 1 slice of bread, place the lettuce, tomato, cucumber, onion, ham and cheese.
Place the 2nd slice on top and place all the ingredients.
Place the 3rd slice on top, apply butter on both sides and grill.
Garnish with parsley and enjoy.


Cocktail fruit juice

Ingredients:

•1 orange
•1/2 pineapple
•2 slices of watermelon

Instructions:

1.Put all the fruits in a juicer and blend.
2.Enjoy your cocktail juice.

Pizza with arugula and ricotta cheese

Ingredients:
  
•200gms refrigerated pizza dough
•½ cup ricotta cheese
•2 cups arugula
•½ cup red grapes, sliced in half
•2 tbsp. pine nuts
•Zest of 1 lemon

Pizza with arugula and ricotta cheese
picture credits - Hector Sanchez

Instructions:

1.Heat a pan over medium-high heat and preheat the oven to 400°.
2.Roll and stretch the dough to 12inches. Carefully lay the dough at the bottom of the hot pan and cook for 1-2 mins. Flip the dough and cook until grill marks appear and the crust is cooked (1 to 2 more minutes).
3.Transfer the crust to a baking sheet and spread ricotta on top. Bake for about 6 minutes till the cheese melts. Remove from the oven and top with arugula, grapes, pine nuts and lemon zest. Cut into squares and serve warm.


Salted caramel and chocolate hazelnut popcorn

Ingredients:

•¾ cup light brown sugar
•½ cup unsalted butter
•¼ cup light corn syrup
•½ tbsp. kosher salt
•1 tsp. vanilla extract
•½ tsp. baking soda
•¾ cup hazelnut-chocolate spread
•10 cups (popped) popcorn

Salted caramel and chocolate hazelnut popcorn

Instructions:

1.Preheat oven to 250ºC. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
2.Combine brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, salt, vanilla and baking soda in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat for 8-10mins, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is boiling and thickens slightly. Remove from heat, and whisk in hazelnut-chocolate spread.
3.Place popcorn in a very large bowl. Gradually add caramel mixture, stirring gently, until popcorn is evenly coated.
4.Spread popcorn evenly on prepared baking sheets. Bake in preheated oven, stirring occasionally, until mixture begins to harden, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from oven, and let stand until hardened and crisp, 5 to 10 minutes.

Get all your ingredients at www.naturesbasket.co.in

Massaman Curry Recipe

Massaman curry is a rich, relatively mild Thai curry cooked in coconut milk. It can be paired with various meats & vegetables of your choice and is generally eaten with rice.
Here is the recipe to make your Massaman curry.

Massaman Curry

Ingredients:

•2 tablespoons vegetable oil
•3 tablespoons curry paste
•1 ginger, sliced
•½ kg boneless chicken, cubed
•3 tablespoons brown sugar
•3 tablespoons fish sauce
•3 tablespoons tamarind paste
•1/3 cup peanut butter
•1 potato, cut in cubes
•1 can coconut milk
•3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Instructions:
1.Heat vegetable oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the curry paste and minced ginger, stir for 2 minutes and let it cook.
2.Stir in the cubed chicken, and cook until the pieces turn white on the outside for about 3 minutes. Add in vegetables such as zucchini & peppers and cook until the veggies are soft.
3.Stir in brown sugar, fish sauce, tamarind paste, peanut butter, potatoes, and coconut milk.
4.Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the potatoes are tender and the chicken pieces are no longer pink in the center (about 20 minutes)
5.Add the lime juice and cook for an additional 5 minutes before serving.

Get all your ingredients at www.naturesbasket.co.in

Pad Thai Recipe

Pad Thai is one of the most popular dishes of Thailand made with flat rice noodles. It makes for a great mid-day snack or a main dish. The strong taste of peanuts and lemon add freshness to these delicious noodles. Here is how to make your own recipe.

Pad Thai

Ingredients:

•1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
•2eggs
•3 tablespoons soy sauce
•1 tablespoon fish sauce
•1tablespoons sriracha sauce
•200gms pad Thai noodles (brown rice noodles)
•2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
•2 tablespoons canola oil
•2 tablespoons brown sugar
•1 cup fresh bean sprouts
•1 cup cilantro
•3 scallions, thinly sliced
•½ cup chopped peanuts

Instructions:

1.Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Remove from heat and add the noodles. Let the noodles sit for about 10 minutes, or until soft. Drain and rinse under cool water. Different noodles can be cooked in different ways.
2.Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Crack the eggs and scramble for 2mins until set. Remove the eggs from the pan and set aside.
3.To make the dressing, in a small bowl combine the soy sauce, fish sauce, sriracha, lime juice, canola oil, and brown sugar. Whisk until emulsified.
4.In a large skillet combine the noodles, sauce, bean sprouts, scrambled eggs, cilantro, and scallions. Toss until combined.
5.Garnish with peanuts and serve. Sprinkle some fresh lime juice while serving.

Get all your ingredients at www.naturesbasket.co.in

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Thai basil chicken

This pad kra pao gai commonly known as Thai basil chicken is one of the most popular Thai dishes. A simple recipe which can easily be made with tofu for vegetarians.

Thai Basil Chicken

Ingredients:

(If egg used)
·   1 egg
·   2 tablespoons of oil for frying

Basil chicken
·   1 chicken breast (or any other cut of boneless chicken, about 200 grams)
·   4 Thai chilies
·   5 cloves of garlic
·   1 teaspoon of oyster sauce
·   1 tablespoon oil for frying
·   1 splash of dark soy sauce
·   1 handful of Thai holy basil leaves
·   ½ teaspoon light soy sauce
·   ½ teaspoon sugar


Instructions:

First, fry the egg
  • On high-medium flame, heat a wok or frying pan with about 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil.
  • Drop in the egg when the oil is hot. Cook the egg until done and remove from the flame.

Basil chicken
  • The chicken should be cut into small bite sized pieces. Use tofu instead of chicken if you prefer.
  • Fry pounded garlic and chillies and toss in the chicken pieces and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the holy basil, oyster sauce, light soy and dark soy sauce along with sugar and cook for 30 seconds.
  • Turn off the heat and plate the chicken on the rice.
  • Garnish and serve with fresh basil.


View our freshest range of Thai food at www.naturesbasket.co.in

Friday, 24 February 2017

Benefits of Lemongrass

Native to Asian countries, Lemongrass is a perennial plant with thin, long leaves. Although lemongrass smells like lemon, it tastes milder and sweeter. Nutritionally, lemongrass is a good source of vitamins A and C, folate, folic acid, magnesium, zinc, copper, iron, potassium, phosphorus, calcium and manganese. It also has minute traces of B vitamins.
Not only does it have wide culinary usage owing to its rich flavour, lemongrass is useful in remedies for a wide range of ailments.

Lemongrass

1.Helps Digestion : Lemongrass promotes healthy digestion as the antiseptic compounds of Lemongrass effectively kill bad bacteria and parasites that exist in the digestive tract and repopulate the good bacteria in the colon. Its antimicrobial properties help relieve gastroenteritis. A daily cup of Lemongrass tea works wonders for the digestive track. 

2.Controls Cholesterol Levels : A study done in University of Wisconsin 1989 found that people with daily consumption of lemongrass oil noticed reduction in cholesterol levels and a significant decrease in blood fats. The anti-cholesterol and anti-atherosclerosis action of lemongrass helps reduce the absorption of cholesterol from the intestine.

3.Cleanses and detoxifiesLemongrass helps remove toxins, uric acid and bad cholesterol from the body by increasing the frequency and quantity of urination and also helps improving blood circulation.

4.Helps fight cold and flu : Antibacterial and antifungal properties of lemongrass help your body cope with coughs, fever and other cold and flu symptoms. Its vitamin C rich nature boosts your immune system to fight the infection.

5.Known to fights Cancer : The several antioxidant properties in lemongrass help in lowering risk of cancer by fighting free radicals. 

6.Reduces Arthritis Pain : The pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties of lemongrass help treat arthritis, rheumatism, osteoarthritis, gout and other types of joint pain.
Enjoy the benefits of lemongrass in various different foods. Add it to your stir fry, curry paste, soup or stews. You can even make refreshing lemongrass coolers to beat the heat or simply add to your evening tea. 

Shop for the freshest lemongrass here http://bit.ly/2lzpSVq

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Tom Kha: Thai coconut milk based soup

Tom Kha is a popular Thai soup which comes to us from Bangkok and the central plains of Thailand. It is typically served with shrimp or chicken but can include straw mushrooms or bok choy. It has a wonderful balance of sweet and sour flavor accompanied by the fragrance of fresh lemongrass, cilantro, galangal, and lime.

While the dish may sound intimating to assemble, we assure you, this soup is super easy!

Thai coconut milk based soup
Ingredients
1 can (14 oz.) coconut milk
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
1 can (14 oz.) reduced-sodium chicken broth / Vegetable broth
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon Thai chili paste
1 stalk fresh lemongrass, cut in 1-in. pieces
6 quarter-size slices fresh Galangal
1 tablespoon Thai fish sauce (nuoc mam or nam pla) [Optional]
1 pound boned, skinned chicken breast or thighs / Tofu; cut into 1-in. chunk
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves

Instructions
1.Combine the coconut milk, broth, ginger, and lemongrass in a medium saucepan.
2.Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat.
3.To that, add fish sauce, chicken/tofu, sugar, mushrooms, chili paste and lime juice.
4.Over low heat simmer for 5-10 minutes until chicken/tofu is cooked.
5.Remove the lemongrass from the soup and garnish with cilantro and basil leaves.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Thai Mango Sticky Rice Recipe

Mango sticky rice is one of the most popular desserts in Thailand. It makes for a cool dessert in the summer heat. Make your own mango sticky rice using this recipe.

Thai Mango Sticky Rice

Ingredients

For the rice:
•1 kg. Thai sticky rice
•800 ml. coconut cream
•150 gms. Sugar
•1 tsp. salt

For the toppings
•200 ml. coconut cream
•⅓ tsp. salt
•Sweet yellow mangoes
•100 g. yellow mung beans (optional)

Instructions
1.Rinse the sticky rice 6 - 10 times, making sure most of the starch gets removed and you're left with clear water. Then soak the rice submerged in water for about 6 hours.
2.Cook the rice for 15-20mins and then set aside.
3.In a pot, add 800 ml. coconut cream on medium heat, and keep stirring. Add 150 gms. sugar and 1 tsp. salt, and keep stirring until fully dissolved. When the coconut cream mixture comes to a boil, turn off the heat.
4.Put the fresh sticky rice into a mixing bowl, and begin to slowly add in the coconut cream and sugar mixture. Combine all the ingredients together and you sticky rice is ready. Put this bowl in the fridge for an hour to cool.
5.In a separate sauce pan add the other portion of coconut cream and salt, and stir on low heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, then turn off the heat, and set aside in a bowl. This will be served alongside the mango sticky rice as a topping.
6.(Optional) In a frying pan, using low heat, dry fry the yellow mung beans for a few minutes until they turn golden crispy. Again, set this aside as a topping.
7.For the mango, first peel the skin, then cut the fruit from either side of the mango seed, and slice the mango into large bite sized pieces.
8.On a plate, first add a portion of sticky rice, top it with mango, sprinkle on some mung beans, and serve the extra coconut cream on the side.

Get all your ingredients to make this delicious dessert only at www.naturesbasket.co.in

Monday, 13 February 2017

Quinoa Pancake Recipe

Indulge your Valentine with a special treat of delicious and healthy pancakes drizzled with maple. View this simple recipe to get to your lovers heart and kickoff the celebrations.


Ingredients:
•1 cup Healthy Alternatives quinoa flour
•2 teaspoons baking powder
•½ teaspoon baking soda
•¾ cup Healthy Alternatives Greek Yogurt
•½ cup almond milk
•½ mashed ripe banana
•3 tablespoons Healthy Alternatives honey
•1 tablespoon vanilla extract
•1 egg
Butter
Bananas and strawberries for garnish
Maple syrup

Instructions:
1.Take a large bowl, add the quinoa flour, baking powder and baking soda and mix well.
2.Take another large sized bowl, add the Greek yogurt, almond milk, mashed banana, honey, vanilla extract, egg and whisk all the ingredients properly.
3.Add the quinoa flour mix to the above yogurt mix and whisk properly.
4.Take a pan, put in on medium heat and add a dollop of butter.
5.Take a spoonful of the pancake mix, pour it on the pan and spread evenly to make pancakes.
6.Let it cook for 2mins, flip it, and cook the other side as well.
7.Make 4-5 pancakes, and layer them on top of each other.
8.Garnish with bananas, strawberries and a drizzle of maple syrup.

Get all the ingredients you need to make your pancakes at www.naturesbasket.co.in

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Zucchini Pesto Zoodles recipe

Spiralize your way to good health with this rainbow coloured recipe because zucchini zoodles are the new noodles!

Ingredients:

•1 green and 1 yellow zucchini
•1 carrot
•2 tablespoons Healthy Alternatives olive oil
•Sea salt and pepper
•3 tablespoons World Chef Pesto sauce
•1 tomato, chopped
Healthy Alternatives sunflower seeds for garnish
Parmesan cheese for garnish

Instructions:

1.Spiralize the zucchinis and carrots in a bowl.
2.Add some olive oil to a pan and put it on medium heat.
3.Add the spiralized zucchini and carrots, salt & pepper and pesto sauce to the pan and sauté for 2-3 minutes.
4.Place the zoodles in a medium sized bowl, garnish with chopped tomatoes, sunflower seeds.

Get all the ingredients you need to make these zoodles at www.naturesbasket.co.in

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Avocado Chocolate Mousse

An exquisite soiree with your loved one is not complete without the seduction of chocolate! Indulge your sweetheart with our scrumptious & creamy chocolate avocado mousse recipe this Valentine’s Day!

Ingredients:

•10-12 pieces of L’exclusif Baking chocolate bar
•3 tablespoons of coconut oil
•3 tablespoons honey
•½ bowl cocoa powder
•1 avocado
Strawberry for garnish
•Powdered sugar for garnish

Instructions:

1.Add 10-12 pieces of L’exclusif baking chocolate bar, 3 tablespoons of coconut oil and 3 tablespoons of honey to a pan on medium heat.
2.Keep whisking till the chocolate melts.
3.In a blender, add ½ bowl of cocoa powder, avocado, the chocolate mixture and blend it well.
4.Take the chocolate avocado mixture and freeze it for 2 hours.
5.Garnish with strawberry and powdered sugar.
and top it off with parmesan cheese.

Get all the ingredients you need to make this mousse at www.naturesbasket.co.in


Friday, 10 February 2017

Cashew Butter Breakfast Bar

Power through your week with these healthy and filling cashew butter breakfast bar. You won’t need to miss your breakfast again as these delicious bars are perfect for those on the go. View this simple recipe and make your own batch today.

Ingredients:

1 Bowl chopped Walnuts
1 Bowl Roasted Sunflower seeds
1 Bowl Roasted Sesame seed blend
1 Cup Desiccated Coconut
1 tbspn Ground Cinnamon
7 tbsp Cashew Butter
4 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp vanilla extract

Instructions:

1. Add 6-7 tablespoons of Cashew butter to a pan over medium flame.
2. Add 4 tablespoons of maple syrup and 1 tablespoon Vanilla extract to it
3. Mix well over medium flame
4. Add the dry fruit mix to the the butter mixture and continue mixing well over medium flame
5. Line a tray with butter paper and the place the mix in it
6. Flatten the mixture and top it with Roasted flax seeds.
7. Bake for 20 minutes and cut into pieces.

Get all the ingredients you need to make these breakfast bars at www.naturesbasket.co.in