Appetizers/Snacks · Brunch

Besan Toast


These besan toasts are super easy to make and quite a healthy way to start your day. Just mix up a spiced besan(chickpea flour) batter, dip the bread slices and pan fry or deep fry. The consistency of the batter is the only tricky thing here, it has to be rather thick for a nice coating on bread without making it soggy. Enjoy with chutney and a cup of chai 🙂

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Besan Toast

Bread slices dipped in spiced chickpea flour batter and pan fried. These vegan toasts are so delicous for breakfast or snack.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Course: Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 8 half toasts

Equipment

  • Mixing bowls, an heavy cast iron skillet or tawa(griddle)

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup besan(chickpea flour)
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup water, as needed
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp kasuri methi(crushed)
  • 1 tsp chaat masala
  • Pinch ajwain (carrom seeds)
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped onions
  • 2-3 hot green chilies, finely chopped ,adjust to taste
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 4-5 white bread slices, cut in half diagonally
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil per toast

Instructions

  • In a large bowl, add the besan and start adding water slowly. Stir continously so as to get a thick lump free batter. See video for the consistency. Keep aside for 5 minutes.
  • Add the spices, chopped onions, green chilies and cilantro. Taste and adjust the salt. Mix well.
  • Set a heavy cast iron skillet or tawa to heat on medium heat. Once nicely hot (but not suoper hot), spread 2-3 tablespoon of oil on the skillet.
  • Dip the bread slices in the besan batter to cover both sides. Immediately place on the hot skillet. Let cook on each side for 3-4 minutes without disturbing till the besan coating is browned. Once the besan is cooked, toast will leave the pan on its own. Once you flip the toast, add a litle more oil. Even though we arent deep fryring, these need a little extra oil to not get dry.
    It takes a bit of practice to undertand the right temperature of the griddle. If you will cook on very high heat, the toasts will be cooked outside but will be raw inside. A low medium stove with a heavy skillet that retains heat is good choice
  • Serve warm with yogurt, chutney or ketchup. Enjoy!
Desserts/Baking

Chai Mug Cake

This mug cake is like eating chai in a cake form. Each bite is soft and is aromatic with chai spices like green cardamom and cinnamon.It is an eggless cake that comes together with basic pantry ingredients. Mug cakes are hugely popular with my kids and every time I made them, I always wondered how to make them a bit more unique and adult friendly. If you are a fan of milky chai, this cake is for you. The inspiration for this mug cake came from this recipe on Maria’s blog, I used her amazing idea, but developed my own recipe measurements.

This cake is so fluffy and it tastes of chai. It is quick to make and definitely a keeper recipe. I like my chai on the less sweet side so this cake isn’t very sweet.

What are mug cakes? Mug cakes are simple cakes baked in the mug in a microwave. All the ingredients are added to the mug, mixed and cooked in the microwave. They are quick, small portion and satisfy the cake cravings.

What kind of tea to use? I simply use plain orange pekoe tea bags from the indian grocery stores. You can use english black tea bags as well. Just make sure to use the unflavored ones.

Can it be made nut free? Yes. I add fine ground almond meal to this cake for a nutty bite and also because I love almonds, but I have tested the recipe with just flour as well and you can skip the almond and replace with equivalent flour.

What kind of milk? Can I use Mylk? I use regular 2 percent milk here but you can use whole milk as well. Avoid using fat free milk since the fat in the milk does add to taste and moistness of cake. I haven’t tested this recipe with non dairy milk so I cannot say how the taste or texture will be.

Can I use oil in place of ghee? Yes. Absolutely. But ghee does add to the taste and aroma of the cake. You can use unsalted butter or any neutral oil as well.

Can I add ginger since I like adrak chai? I tried adding ground ginger to the recipe and I found it a bit overpowering. You can add a few thin slices of ginger to hot milk while you steep the tea bags and a mild ginger flavor does come through.

How to serve? I simply dust it with powdered sugar but my kids loved it with whipped cream. You can also add a dollop of spiced buttercream as well. You decide 🙂

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Chai Mug Cake

Chai in a cake form. A simple cake made with steeped tea bags and flavored with chai spices.
Course: Dessert, Snack
Servings: 1 mug cake

Equipment

  • 1 mug tall enough to not overflow when cake rises in the microwave.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup boiling hot milk
  • 2 plain black tea bags, I use wagh bakri
  • 3 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp fine ground almond meal see notes if you want to just use flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp melted ghee or unslated butter or neutral oil
  • pinch of ground cinnamon & green cardamom

Instructions

  • Add the tea bags to the mug. Pour over boiling hot milk over the tea bags. Alternatively you can first warm up the milk in the mug in the microwave and then add the tea bags to it. Set aside to let the tea bags steep for 8-10 minutes for a strong flavor of tea.
  • Once the tea bags have steeped, squeeze them very well using a spatula or back of spoon to strain all the milk. Discard the tea bags. Do not skip this part else the quantity of milk will be less in the recipe.
  • To the tea flavored milk, add the flour, almond meal, sugar, baking powder, melted ghee and ground spices. Using a spoon mix very well until the batter is not lumpy. After adding all the ingredients, your mug should be half full, this will ensure that the cake will not overflow when it rises in the microwave.
  • Microwave for 1 minute + 25-30 seconds in a full power mode (My microwave is 1000 watts) Every microwave is different, so you might need to tweak the time a bit. Use a long skewer inserted in the center of the cake to check for doneness if you arent sure if the cake is cooked.
  • Dust with powdered sugar and enjoy while still warm.

Notes

  1. If you don’t want to use almonds, simply used 1/4 cup of flour.
  2. Measure the ghee when its melted. Use any neutral oil like canola or vegetable if you don’t want to use ghee.
Indian Curry/Stew

Keema(Minced Meat) Bhari Mirch(Peppers)

Delicious peppers stuffed with minced meat. A delicious low carb dish which can be made with leftover keema or with a fresh cooked minced meat masala. The ground meat is stuffed in pasillo chllies and baked off, you can add a few shreds of cheese if you like. I serve them warm drizzled with a garlicky cumin yogurt slurry. A hearty indian meal which is a hit with family.

During summers, I am on a look out for light yet hearty lunches which are not necessarily salads and these peppers are just the right answer. Stuffed peppers are a classic comfort food in many cuisines and here instead of the bell peppers, I like using zesty pasilla chillies which are not hot but have lots of peppery flavor. You can cook the keema fresh and cook it a bit ahead as well and at the time of serving just stuff and bake in oven.

Some tips and variations to try in this recipe depending on how you like.

  • Choose long and firm peppers which are not wrinkled and have fresh stems. Look for dark green ones since they have better flavor.
  • Seasoning the peppers with a little bit of salt and oil and letting them stand for 10-15 minutes brings about good flavor in their flesh.
  • Protein – Use ground chicken or ground beef.
  • Vegetables- If you wish, you can add a few extra vegetables like bell peppers or peas to the ground meat. One small potato mashed with the mince tastes really good.
  • Grains- Mix some cooked rice or quinoa with the keema before stuffing.
  • Serve with a side of rotis for a full meal. They taste amazing with rotis.

Keema Bhari Mirch (Ground Meat stuffed peppers)

Tender pasillo chillies stuffed with indian spiced keema or ground meat filling. Serve with garlic mint yogurt or wamr rotis.
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Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian, Mexican
Servings 12 stuffed pepper halves

Ingredients
  

  • 6 pasillo chilies, sliced lengthwise and skin & seeds removed
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • 1 black cardamom
  • 1 pound ground meat (choose chicken, lamb, or beef)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1.5 tbsp ginger garlic paste
  • Spice blend(recipe below)
  • 2 large tomatoes, finely chopped
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro & fresh mint
  • 1-2 tbsp shredded cheese (optional)
  • Oil for brushing or cooking spray

Spice Blend

  • 1/2 tbsp corinader powder
  • 2 tsp chilli flakes(adjust to taste)
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala

Instructions
 

  • In a small bowl, add all the powdered spices, mix well and keep ready.
  • Preheat the oven to 350F. Spray the insides of pepper with oil and sprinkle salt and pepper. Let stand.
  • In a heavy skillet/pan, warm up the oil and crackle the cumin seeds, bay leaf and cardamom. Add the chopped onions and cook them for 3-4 minutes till they are soften but not browned.
  • Add the ginger garlic paste and the spice blend we made. Saute for 30-40 seconds. Add the tomatoes & sugar next and cook them with the spices for 3-4 minutes on medium heat till you see oil seperating.
  • Add the ground meat, break it using a spatula and mix well with everythhing. Cover and cook for about 8 minutes till the meat is browned and has released its water. Open the lid, sprinkle the salt and then saute (bhuno) uncovered for another 8-10 minutes till all the liquid has evaporated. You will see that the meat is much deeper in color and the fat has started to release a bit. Dont dry the meat completely since it has to bake in the oven.
  • Take it off the heat, pic out the bay leaf and cardamo, mix with cilantro and mint. (At this point you can mix boiled potatoes or cooked rice) Taste and adjust the salt.
  • Divide the warm meat mixture evenly between the peppers. You might have some leftover meat.
  • Lay the peppers in a single layer on a baking sheet.Bake for 20-22 minutes. If you are using cheese, take out of the oven, top with cheese, return to the oven and bake for 5 more minutes till cheese has melted.
    These taste good if they have a slight bite. Dont overbake. Serve warm.
  • For the Yogurt Slurry – Mix 1 cup yogurt with 1/3 cup water. Grate 1-2 garlic cloves, 1/2 tsp roasted cumin powder, fresh lemom juice and 1 tbsp chopped fresh mint leaves and add to the yogurt. Mix well.

Notes

  1. This recipe makes 12 pepper halves which isn’t easy to finish in one go unless you are serving to a big family. I store the leftovers, they taste good for next 1-2 days. Reheat for 5 minutes in a toasted oven. 
  2. If you are topping with cheese, just top the ones you are going to consume right away. 
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Brioche Toast with Saffron Rabdi

These brioche toasts are pure indulgence. The soft brioche is crisped in ghee and then warm, rich almond saffron rabdi is poured over it. A generous scatter of chopped nuts and you would get all the shahi tukda feels. With this recipe I wasn’t trying to recreate shahi tukda, rather make the traditional dessert more approachable for an anytime toast keeping all the traditional elements intact from ghee browned crisp bread to rabdi to nuts to aroma of saffron, its just quick(little bit) 🙂

Growing up, with the leftover chashni (sugar syrup) from gulab jamuns or jalebis or murrabas (preserved fruits), my badi mummy would quickly make shahi tukda. Sometimes she used to deep fry the bread, other times she would simple pan fry it in ghee to crispy perfection, dunk in chashni and pour over a quick rabdi. If you ask me, a bit too much work for a little leftover syrup, however, I also admit that those golden fried nuggets of bread dripping with rabdi were one of the most delicious treats.As I type this, I remember her standing behind the smoking tawa (griddle) frying bread in a kitchen filled with the aroma of ghee and bubbling rabdi.

My kids LOVE brioche, they love snacking on it. Indian bakery bread is sweetish and way softer than white bread that I find here in stores, brioche tastes much closer to. I make these brioche toasts for my kids inspired by those toasts. I dont deep fry, rather pan fry the toasts in ghee and make instant rabdi. I flavor the rabdi(milk sauce) with cardamom, saffron, rose water or vanilla depending on my mood and fold in the nuts. It is one of the best weekend breakfast indulgences.

Traditional rabdi is a labor of love. Milk simmered and scraped for hours and hours before it thickens, the malai is clotted to lacey and it achieves develops a natural caramelized sweetness. And while I am all about such traditional dishes on occasions and festivals, on usual days I just want something quick. Thats how this instant rabdi came into being. Its nutty from ground almonds and tastes quite close to the real deal. The crumbled paneer gives it that mellow grainy texture and trust me if you don’t say, no one would be able to tell. Condensed milk is great in such milk based recipes compared to plain sugar, its gives that extra sweetish smoothness to the rabdi. Its a small batch recipe which which takes about 30 minutes to make, and if by chance you have leftovers, a small portion keeps well in the fridge for a few days.

Brioche Toasts with Saffron Rabdi

Ghee Crisped Brioche Toasts drizzled with Instant Saffron Rabdi.
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine American, Indian
Servings 6 toasts

Ingredients
  

For the brioche Toasts

  • 6 slices brioche bread
  • Ghee for pan frying (about 1 tbsp per toast)
  • Rabdi to serve (recipe below), as much or as little you want

For Instant Rabdi (makes a little over 1 cup rabdi)

  • 2 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 cup full fat or malai paneer, fine grated or crumbled very fine
  • 5 tbsp fine ground almonds, I use store bought blanched almond meal
  • 1/2 cup condensed milk
  • 1/4 tsp ground green cardamom
  • 10-12 saffron strands, dissolved in 1 tbsp warm milk
  • 1/3 cup silvered almonds and pistachios to garnish

Instructions
 

Make the Rabdi

  • Add milk to a heavy bottomed pot. Place on a stove, bring to a boil, reduce the stove to low medium and let the milk simmer for 15 minutes, stir periodically to make sure that it dosent stick to the bottom of the pot. The milk will almost reduce to half its volume and start getting thick.Scrape the sides of the pot every now and then and add back the malai scrappings to the milk.
  • Once the milk has reduced a bit, add the crumbled paneer, ground almonds and condensed mil, mix well and cook stirring often. Stirring often makes the rabdi creamy and also breaks down the paneer for the right (slightly grainy) texture of rabdi. Cook for about 8-10 minutes or till it reaches the desired thickness. Taste and if you feel you can add 1-2 tbsp of sugar if you feel that the rabdi isnt sweet enough. I like to keep in lightly sweet else it tastes quite heavy.
  • When the rabdi has thickned, add the cardamom and soaked saffron.Mix well. Cook for 2 more minutes Take off the stove and let it sit covered till it warm.

Make the toasts

  • Melt 1-2 tbsp of ghee on a medium hot tawa or cast iron skillet and brown them on medim heat on both sides.
  • Serve drizzled with warm rabdi and a scatter of chopped nuts. Enjoy!
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Indian Streetfood/Indo Chines

Gochujang Noodles

How do you like your noodles? I love them spicy, tangy and a bit sweet! These noodles with a balanced kick from gochujang (fermented korean chili paste), mild sweet notes from coconut palm sugar and tang from fresh lime juice are perfect for anytime you crave noodles- be it light summer lunches or weeknights.

Gochujang Noodles with Shrimp & Zucchini

It takes less than 30 minutes to make these and they are sought after in my house during summers. I use juicy summer zucchini and light protein such as shrimp to make them more hearty. I simply love the combination of shrimp and zucchini together! You can spiral the zucchini if you wish, in fact if you want you can make them just with zucchini spirals(noodles) for a light, low carb meal.

Gochujang is made by slowly fermenting gochugaru chili flakes and the long process of fermentation makes the chile develop a savory umami taste. It is subtly sweet and depending on the brand, the heat levels can vary- it is definitely not fiery, rather an unbelievably versatile condiment in my kitchen to pep up almost anything!

Why I love these noodles so much besides the fact that they are noodles 🙂

  • You can adjust the sour, spicy or sweet levels to your liking.
  • It can be easily made vegetarian using extra firm tofu strips or mushrooms.
  • Takes less than 30 minutes to make, even lesser if you use fresh noodles like I do.
  • Its a balanced meal – carbs, protein and vegetables all in one.

Below are the substitutions you can do to make this recipe fit different dietary needs.

  • For gluten-free version- use flat rice noddles instead of the wheat ones. Many gochujang pastes available in the market are GF, check label before buying. Use tamari instead of soy sauce.
  • Use any kinds of vegetables instead of zucchini. Broccoli, napa cabbage, mushrooms all work great.
  • Instead of soy sauce use tamari or liquid aminos.
  • Use thinly sliced chicken breast strips if you don’t want to use seafood.
  • Use tofu or mushrooms for a meat free version.
  • Instead of coconut sugar, add maple or agave for a more smoky taste.
  • If you dont have shallots at home, use thinly sliced red onions.
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5 from 1 vote

Gochujang Noodles

Delicious noodles with balanced spicy, sweet sour flavors tossed with shrimp and juicy zucchini fo ra quick & simple weeknight meal.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Korean
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 12 oz fresh noodles, cooked per packet instructions or use any dried noodles that you normally use
  • 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2-3 tbsp gochujang paste, adjust to tolerance
  • 2 tsp coconut sugar
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 4 tbsp cooking oil, divided
  • 6 oz extra large shrimp, cleaned
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 3 stalks scallions, white and green parts seperate
  • 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced
  • Salt
  • Garnish – toasted sesame seeds, cilantro etc

Instructions

  • Set the noodles to boil while you prep the sauce and vegetables. Cook as per package instructions, drain once cooked, reserve 1/2 cup noodle water and massage drained noodles with a little oil after to avoid them sticking.
  • In a small bowl, mix the soy, gochujang, sugar and lemon juice. Thin out with 2-4 tbsp noodle water since gochujang is quite thick and sticky. Taste the sauce and adjust the ingredients if needed as per your liking. At this point it should taste bold and salty. Keep ready.
  • In a 12 inch pan, heat up 1 tbsp oil on medium.Layer the shrimp, sprinkle some salt and sear/cook them for 2-3 minutes each side depending on the size of your shrimp. Take out in a plate.
  • Add another tbsp of oil and add the sliced zucchini next,sprinkle pinch of salt and quickly saute on high for 2-3 minutes so as to not overcook it. Transfer in the same plate as shrimp.
  • Add the rest of the oil to the pan and heat up on high. Add the shallots and white scallion parts for 2 minutes till they are soft. Work quickly now and next add the sliced garlic and saute for 30 minutes. Add the sauce mix that we prepped now and cook it for a minute or so with shallots and garlic till the sauce starts bubbling.Keep a close eye since the sugar caramalizes fast.
  • Add the noodles next along with shrimp & zucchini and toss everything very well so that its coated in sauce. Taste and adjust the salt. Cook for 3-4 minutes and you can use reserved noodle water (add slowly) if you feel that everything is a bit thick.
  • Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds and green scallion parts and serve immediately.

Notes

  • For gluten-free version- use flat rice noddles instead of the wheat ones.
  • Use any kinds of vegetables instead of zucchini. Broccoli, napa cabbage, mushrooms all work great.
  • Instead of soy sauce use tamari or liquid aminos.
  • Use thinly sliced chicken breast strips if you don’t want to use seafood. Cook them earlier like how we cooked shrimp in this recipe. 
  • Use tofu or mushrooms for a meat free version.
  • Instead of coconut sugar, add maple or agave for a more smoky taste.
  • If you dont have shallots at home, use thinly sliced red onions.
Indian Curry/Stew

Bhuna Mushroom Masala

This mushroom masala is notch up than usual and made by simmering whole button mushrooms in a browned onion, yogurt and spiced sauce. Its an incredibly flavorful dish. You can serve this with a doughy bread like naan or rotis, its pairs well with pulao as well. I make a side of fresh kachumber (indian salad) and some chutney. If you are making this for entertaining, you can make it in ghee but for usual weeknight dinners at home I prefer using oil.

There are many ways to make masala in northern parts of india but essentially it is a onion and tomato base to which yogurt and nuts are added along with fragrant spiced. I love this version so much without dousing the vegetable in cream and milk. Its not heavy at all and very comforting.

Me and the little one are mushroom lovers in our home. However, my husband loved this dish so much though it will take more cajoling as far as the older ones goes 🙂 I like to choose the white button mushrooms for this sauce, I like their mild taste and how they carry forward the delicate flavor of the dish .There is no need to slice the mushrooms, keep the stems intact as well, however do remove any bruised end parts.

Try and purchase mushrooms a day before you plan to make this. I dont know what it is but I find that the fresher the mushrooms, they add of the taste of the dish than those lying around in the fridge.They absorb the scented sauce well and are so juicy after cooking. You can add cashew powder, I prefer the the taste of almonds in the sauce. It differs from family to family about the use of tomatoes and some people go to an extent of saying thats its not an authentic korma if tomatoes are used and they might be right as well. I decide whether to use or not depending on the kind of korma, for example lamb or chicken korma can do very well without tomato because they are so flavorful, however the vegetable korma dishes do need a little push as far as flavor goes.

Mushroom Masala

Mushrooms in a delicately scented sauce made with spiced ground onion, tomatoes and yogurt sauce.
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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 8-10 oz (about 300 gms) white mushrooms, whole
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1.5 cups thinly sliced onions
  • 1 tsp shah jeera (caraway seeds)
  • Whole spices – 1 mace, 6 green cardamom, 1 bay leaf, 2 inch cinnamom, 3 cloves
  • 1-2 hot green chilli, sliced (adjust to taste)
  • 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tsp hot red chilli powder(or to taste)
  • 1/3 cup whole milk yogurt
  • 2 large tomato (pureed)
  • 1 tsp kasuri methi (crushed between palms)
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 tbsp ghee

Instructions
 

  • Clean the mushrooms by rubbing them with a dry cloth. Keep the stems but do remove any bruised parts. Add the cleaned mushrooms to a bowl and masage with 2 tsp oil and 1/2 tsp salt and red chilli powder. Let sit near while you make the sauce.
  • Heat oil on medium heat in a heavy bottom pot. Once oil is hot, add the sliced onions. Cook onions till they brown evenly. Strain the onions from the oil using a slotted spoon.You can take out 3 tbsp of oil from the pot after frying the onions. Reserve the oil and use in 1-2 days in any savory curry you make.
  • Reserve 1/3 cup of onions and add the rest to a small blender jar along with yogurt, red chilli powder. Blitz to make a smooth paste. Set aside.
  • To the remaining oil add the whole spices and crackle for 30 seconds. Add the green chillies and caraway seeds next and let crackle. Next, add the ginger garlic paste and cook for a minute or so till you smell a nice aroma.Then add the tomato puree and salt. Cook for 3-4 minutes till you see oil seperating on the sides.
  • Stiring continously, next add the yogurt onion paste and now and cook again on medium heart till oil starts separating.
  • Add the mushrooms now and saute with the masala for 2-3 minutes. Next add 1/2 cup hot water to the masala, taste and adjust the salt of the masala and bring it to a slow boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low, cover and let cook for 8-10 minutes till the mushrooms are tender. Dont cook too much else the mushrroms will shrink and become chewy.
  • Finish with ghee,kasuri methi and garam masala. Mix gentle and take the pot off the stove. Let rest for 20 minutes before serving.
  • Serve garnished with reserved fried onions.
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Brunch

Sous Vide Creamy Shrimp Skillet

These juicy shrimp in a creamy cheesy sauce are perfect for an indulgent meal for special occasions. The shrimp are cooked sous vide (indirect slow water bath cooking), however I have added the instructions for cooking them in a skillet as well in the recipe. Sous vide cooking allows for slow cooking for about 40 minutes and by the end, the shrimp are really succulent and cooked perfectly. Then added to an easy creamy sauce.

The sauce is very simple – butter, onion, garlic, have cream and parmesan cheese. It comes together in less than 10 minutes. You can make the sauce a little lighter by using half and half or milk, it won’t we as thick in that case. My kids like to dunk crusty bread and slurp on the sauce as a soup but you can mix in boiled fettuccine or linguine for a rounded heavenly shrimp pasta dish.

A few things to be kept in mind when making this dish:-

  • Undercook the shrimp slightly :-Slightly undercook the shrimp because we are going to finish cooking them in the sauce. I have noted each timings in the recipe for jumbo size shrimp. Adjust if you are using a different size of shrimp.
  • One Skillet Dish -If you do not want to use sous vide or do not own one, no problem! You can make this dish in the skillet itself. Its a one skillet recipe. Use non stick, stainless steel, ceramic coated or seasoned cast iron, any heavy skillet will work since it conducts the heat better. You quickly sear the shrimp first, take them out, make the sauce in the same pan and finish the shrimp in the sauce. Easy peasy!
  • You can use half milk and half heavy cream if you do not want to use heavy cream. But I don’t recommend, its a once in a while, special occasion dish and we should live just a little 🙂
  • Spice it up:- I like to keep this dish mellow because thats how my kids like it, nut if I were making it for adults, I would add a 1/2 teaspoon of chili flakes to add a nice kick.
  • Variations – You can use a mix of scallops, crab meat and shrimp instead of just shrimp for a seafood fiesta.
  • Add Vegetables – Add 1/2 cup of blanched peas, handful of baby spinach or blanched asparagus to the sauce to make it more hearty. Promise you the kids will love vegetables in that cream sauce.
  • Use a mix of cheese – Use a mix of asiago, romano and parmesan cheese instead of just parmesan.
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5 from 1 vote

Sous Vide Creamy Shrimp Skillet

Juicy sous vide shrimp in a creamy parmesan sauce. Serve with crusty bread or pasta.
Course: Main Course

Ingredients

  • 1 lb raw jumbo shrimp (cleaned, tail on)
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • Half lemon sliced
  • 1/4 tsp salt

For the sauce

  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 4-5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tsp italian seasoning
  • Salt
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Instructions

Cooking Shrimp Using Sous Vide (Ignore if you dont want to use sous vide, see note1)

  • Place the shrimp along with butter, salt and lemon slices in a ziploc bag. Press down and seal while removing out all the air.
  • Set up the sous vide stick in a 6 qt pot filled with water. Select the shrimp recipe from sous smart panel. Or set at 130F for 35 minutes. Lower the ziploc bag into the water bath, clip to secure the bag to the side of the pot. Cook till sous vide session is finished.
  • Once the shrimp is cooked, the ziplog bag will have juices. Reserve the juices.

Make the Cream sauce

  • While the shrimp is cooking, make the cream sauce. Melt the butter over medium- high heat in a large skillet.
  • Add the onion and cook for 3 minutes until transculent. Next, add the garlic, sprinkle the italion seasoning and saute for 15 seconds.
  • Add the cream and simmer for 2 minutes. Dont let the cream boil.
  • Carefully add the shrimp along with all the juices from the bag into the skillet. If using spinach or peas, add right now. Mix gently and let cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the parmesan cheese,mix everything, taste and add the salt and pepper(if you wish)
  • Immediatley take off the heat, sprinkle parsley or cilantro and serve with bread or boiled pasta.

Notes

  1. Sear the shrimp on both sides for 2 minutes in 1 tbsp butter in a medium hot skillet at the start of cooking. Once seared, take out in a plate, add second tablespoon of butter and proceed to make the sauce as in the recipe. 
  2. If you are not using sous vide, you might need to add 1/4 to 1/3 cup chicken stock to the sauce to thin it out a bit right when you add cream along with some lemon juice. 
  3. Add a 1/2 teaspoon of chili flakes to add a nice kick to the sauce if desired.
Appetizers/Snacks

Shish Tawook – Lebanese Chicken Skewers

These chicken skewers are mildly flavored, light and super approachable in terms of ingredients. Dont compare the spice levels to a tikka or kabab but they are juicy and delicious especially during hot weather. A super easy recipe which is perfect for summer evenings when you don’t want to slog in the kitchen. Marinate the chicken (or use vegetables like zucchini, mushrooms or even paneer cubes) few hours ahead and grill just before serving. You can make easy sides like yogurt raita or hummus. The tawook is traditionally served with a sharp garlic sauce called toum but I make garlic yogurt instead.

The grilled juicy chicken morsels are best served right off the grill and are also amazing tucked inside pita bread or naan for a satisfying wrap or you can serve them as a side to simple pilafs or salads. I have been making these for many years and developed this recipe over years which is a huge hit with my family.

Tawook marinade is brightly flavorful with lemon and yogurt than shawarma marinade which has more of warm spices going in. I like to add a little ginger and green chilli to my marinade for added kick though traditionally paprika is used. If you do not have thyme, use dried oregano, it gives a close flavor. Use tomato puree if you dont have tomato paste. The recipe is really approachable like I said before 🙂 Use large chunks of chicken breast since they tend to dry out in the high heat of the grill. If you do not have grill, use a hot iron skillet to cook them or broil in the oven. Chicken breast cooks fast and cooks easily but also dries out easily so avoid baking in oven or cooking on slow heat(they will become watery). And as I always always point out, since the ingredients are few- try to use good quality olive oil and organic or very good quality yogurt.

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5 from 1 vote

Shish Tawook

Lebanese Chicken skewers with chicken marinated in lemon, garlic & yogurt, these are super easy to make and perfect for quick summer meals.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish
Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup whole milk thick yogurt (use greek yogurt or hung curd)
  • 1 lemon juiced (about 3 tbsp lemon juice)
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 inch fresh ginger shoot, minced
  • 1 Thai green chillies (optional, adjust to tolerance, skip for kids)
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1.5 tbsp tomato paste (or 1 tbsp thick tomato puree)
  • 1.5 tsp paprika (or kashmiri chilli powder) , gives the color not the heat
  • 2.5 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1.5 lb(750 gms) chicken breast, cut in large chunks
  • Oil for brushing

Instructions

  • In a large bowl, add all the ingredients except the chicken and using a whisk, mix very well.
  • Before adding chicken, taste the marinade and make sure that its sharp salty. If the salt is less the chicken wont have flavor.
  • Add the chicken, using your hands, massage the chicken chunks well with the marinade. Cover with a cling film and refrigerate and let marinate for about 5 hours.
  • If using bamboo skewers, soak them in water for 40 minutes. You can use metal skewers as well.
  • Skewer the chicken before grilling. Brush liberally with oil. Grill on high heat for 5-7 minutes on each side. Serve rightaway.
  • To make garlic yogurt raita simply whisk 1 cup plain yogurt with 1 tbsp grated garlic, thin out with water as desired and add roasted cumin powder, red chilli powder, chaat masala, herbs and salt to taste. Make raita atleast an hour ahead for best flavors.
  • Serve raita chilled and shish warm- best combo!