Picky Eaters: Make everyday food fun, exciting and yummy

Rakhee Vaswani is a Cordon Bleu-trained chef who leads Palate Culinary Studio. She is passionate about her food and believes that it’s the perfect remedy for all problems.
Parents today are constantly reminded of the need to give their children healthy, home-cooked meals instead of the fat, salt and sugar-laden fare in food courts and restaurants. Yet, busy lifestyles mean that family time is in short supply which makes it hard to balance this need with the practicality of cooking for every family member. In her book, Picky Eaters, Vaswani guides parents and kids on how they can make everyday food fun, exciting and yummy. An extract:
Oats and Moong Dal
Tikki Frankie
(Serves: 6)
Yellow moong dal (split yellow gram) ½ cup, Quick cooking rolled oats ½ cup, Fresh curd 2 tbsp, Roasted besan 1 tbsp, Green chillies 1/2 tsp (finely chopped), Chaat masala 2 tsp, Chilli powder 2 tsp, Garam masala ¼ tsp, Turmeric powder ¼tsp, Ginger-garlic paste 1 tsp, Coriander (dhania) 1 tbsp (finely chopped), Onion 1 tbsp (minced), Chilli garlic sauce 1 tbsp, Salt to taste, Oil 2 tsp (for greasing and cooking), Roti wraps or tortilla wraps for frankie
For the frankie masala
Amchur powder 1 tsp, Chilli powder ½ tsp, White pepper powder 1 tsp, Salt 1 tsp
Clean, wash and boil the moong dal in 1 cup of water till it is soft and cooked and all the water has evaporated.
Drain and blend the dal in a mixer to a coarse paste.
Transfer the paste to a bowl, add all the remaining
ingredients (except chilli garlic sauce) and mix well;
reserve some oats for coating.
Divide the mixture into 12 equal portions. Shape each into a long sausage roll and coat with oats.
Lightly grease a non-stick pan with ½ tsp of oil.
Cook each roll in the pan with minimum oil.
For the frankie masala, mix the ingredients in a bowl and sprinkle on the rolls.
Roll the roti or wrap over each cutlet after adding some
minced onion and coriander. Serve with chilli garlic sauce.
Chicken Satay
(Serves: 4)
Chicken 400 gms, Coriander seeds 1½ tsp, roasted, Garlic paste 3 tbsp, Lemongrass cut 2-inch long, Fresh turmeric 1½ tsp, Sugar 6 tsp, Salt to taste, Soya sauce 6 tbsp, Lime juice 6 tbsp, Oil ½ tsp
Cut the chicken into long strips and keep aside.
Grind the coriander seeds, garlic paste, lemongrass, fresh turmeric, sugar, salt, soya sauce, lime juice and oil to make a paste.
Marinate the chicken strips with the ground paste. Put them on skewers in a zigzag fashion and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Heat a grill, brush the chicken with little oil and grill for 6-8 minutes.
Serve with peanut sauce.
Caterpillar Sandwiches
(Serves: 2)
Brown bread slices 16 (cut into roundrels), Butter to spread, Cream cheese to spread, Nutella to spread, Apple 1 (sliced into roundels), Banana 1 (sliced into roundels)
Butter the bread roundels and spread Nutella on one half and cream cheese on the other half.
With the cream cheese pair an apple or strawberry.
With the Nutella put a slice of banana and make the roundel into sandwiches and keep aside.
To assemble
On a large platter place the sandwiches in an S shape in the form of a caterpillar. Add a tomato for the head with some details of eyes and antennae.
Ice Cream Cake Pops
(Serves: 8)
Ice cream cones 8-10, Cake (crumbled) 4-6 cups, Icing/frosting 1 cup, Melted milk chocolate 1 cup, Melted chocolate (white/pink) ½ cup, Gems or candies as required
Cut the ice cream cones a little from the top to make them smaller.
Mix the icing into the crumbled cake and shape into round balls.
Insert a stick into each cake pop and refrigerate.
Dip the cold cake pop in melted chocolate, tap off any excess and place it on the ice cream cone. Drizzle some pink or white chocolate on one half of the cake pop.
Pour sprinkles and place Gems on top and let it set.
For the frosting
Butter 50 gms, Icing sugar 100 gms
Use an electric beater to blend the butter and icing sugar till smooth. Use as desired.

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( Source : deccan chronicle )
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