Cheese Garlic bread\ bruschetta

In Goa, the place in India where I belong, rather than chapati or roti, Goans prefer eating pao (bread buns or rolls) with chicken gravy. Though now a days, many have moved to adjusting with roti or chapati due to the rising fare of pao in bakeries.

So out of habit, whenever I decide to prepare any spicy chicken curry, we plan to buy bread loaf or rolls. If none is available we settle down for slice bread which is always there at home. Slice bread is like a savior in need of calamity ;).

This once we had bought multigrain baguette. Being quite long enough, much of it had left over. How to finish it off was a question I was thinking of answering quickly.I usually have shredded mozzarella cheese readily available in my freezer. So decided to make Cheese garlic bread taking garlic bread recipe from madhura’s recipe as the base.

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Recipe :

Ingredients :

  • 1 Baguette or few bread slices
  • around 4 tbsp unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 3-5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 tsp pepper powder
  • 1/2 tsp mixed herbs
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp red chilli flakes
  • pinch of salt
  • shredded mozzarella cheese for garnish

Method :

  1. Cut the baguette into slices or if you are using bread slices, cut them into triangle shape.
  2. In a bowl, mix all rest of the ingredients except bread. Instead of minced garlic cloves, you can even add ginger garlic paste.IMG_20160707_180211
  3. Take a slice of bread and apply the butter mix. I prefer applying on both the sides of the slice.
  4. Arrange the buttered slices on an oven tray. Sprinkle the shredded cheese on each of the slice.
  5. Bake these slices in an oven pre-heated at 400 F for around 5 minutes.
  6. Serve hot.

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Butter Chicken – type one

Butter chicken is enjoyed by all generations of people – may it be old or young. It was well with any type of bread like naans, kulchas or just our normal readily available sliced bread or you can enough it rice or fried rice.

This is a recipe passed to me by my mum and I must say when she prepares it, it just tastes like restaurant types. Yummy!!

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Recipe :

Ingredients :

  • 1 kg chicken, boneless or with bones, cleaned and cut into medium-sized pieces

Set A –

  • 1/2-1 lime juice
  • salt as per taste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder (haldi powder)

Set B –

  • 1 cup yoghurt
  • 1 tsp cumin powder (jeera powder)
  • 2 tsp coriander powder (dhaniya powder)
  • 1 inch cinnamon stick ( dalchini)
  • 3 cardamom (elaichi)
  • 7-8 peppercorns (kalimirch ke daane)
  • 5-6 cloves (laung)
  • 15-20 Kashmiri chillies (1-2 tbsp Kashmiri chilli powder)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder (haldi powder)
  • 2.5 cm ginger (adrak)
  • 6 garlic cloves (lehsun)
  • 4 green chillies
  • 1/4 bunch coriander leaves

Set C –

  • 4 big onions
  • 10-12 cashew nuts
  • 1/4 tsp poppy seeds

Set D –

  • 4 tomatoes

Set E –

  • 1-2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp kasuri methi (dried fennel leaves)
  • 1/2 cup milk cream
  • 4 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 100 g butter/ 1 stick of unsalted butter

 

Method :

  1. Apply ingredients in Set A to the chicken pieces and let it marinate for sometime.IMG_20160722_203759
  2. Grind all the ingredients in Set B into a fine paste. Apply this to the marinated chicken pieces and keep aside for another 20-30 minutes.IMG_20160722_203540
  3. In the meanwhile, put the tomatoes in Set D in boiling water and keep them for sometime. Remove the skin and grind into puree. Strain the purée to remove any seeds and left over skin and keep it aside.IMG_20160722_203453
  4. Grind all ingredients in set C into a paste and keep it aside. I have used white onion so the paste is in white color. If you use pinkish purple onions, you will get slightly purple paste.IMG_20160722_203448
  5. Incase, you are unable to get very fine paste in step 4, you can strain this paste too to get fine velvety smooth texture.
  6. In a non stick pan, take half the butter. To it add the marinated chicken and fry. Let it cook for sometime but take care that it does not get burnt.IMG_20160722_213103
  7. Remove the chicken and keep it aside. In the same pan, add remaining butter, bay leaves, kasuri methi and fry. Now add he onion paste (Set C) and tomato puree (Set D). Let it also be fried.IMG_20160722_214633
  8. Then add the fried chicken pieces, tomato sauce and salt as per taste. Add the cream and stir well. Let it cook.
  9. Garnish with coriander leaves.

 

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Saanjori/Sweet Semolina dessert stuffed tortilla

As I had mentioned in the Puranpoli recipe that I would be soon posting another stuffed tortilla recipe. So here I have come up with Saanjori – ‘Saanjo or Saano‘ means dessert made from slightly butter roasted semolina (most commonly known as Sheera or Sooji Halwa) stuffed into ‘Puri’ – tortilla or mini tortilla.

So here goes the recipe!

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Recipe :

Ingredients :

For the Semolina dessert/Sheera :

  • 1 cup semolina
  • 2 cups hot boiling water
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom powder
  • 1 big banana or 2 elaichi bananas/small bananas (Optional)
  • 2 1/2 tbsp ghee (melted butter)
  • few strands of saffron (optional)

For the covering :

  • 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour or wheat flour
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt
  • 5-6 tbsp ghee (melted butter)

Method :

  1. Mix the ingredients for the covering and knead into a soft dough using water as required. Cover and keep aside the dough.
  2. In a non stick pan, heat ghee. Add the semolina and fry for few minutes. Do not allow the semolina to turn brown.
  3. Add the saffron and mix well.IMG_20160727_103819
  4. Add the hot water to the semolina. Close the lid and let it cook.
  5. Once the water is a little evaporated but not completely dry, mash the banana and add to the softened semolina.
  6. Then add sugar and salt. Mix well and check the taste.
  7. When almost about to dry, add the cardamom powder and turn off the gas.
  8. The sheera stuffing is now ready. Allow it to cool.IMG_20160727_104620
  9. Take a golf ball size amount of dough and roll into a small disc.IMG_20160727_170319
  10. Take a small ball of sheera and put it in the middle of the dough disc.IMG_20160727_170418
  11. Cover the sheera ball joining the edges of the dough disc which will turn again into a ball.IMG_20160727_171935
  12. Roll this ball again into a disc.IMG_20160727_172049
  13. Fry on hot griddle applying ghee on either sides.IMG_20160727_171913
  14. Repeat for rest of the dough and sheera.IMG_20160727_172020

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Millet flour (Ragi) cookies

My body structure has always been petite and I am also a weakling health wise. I had been facing joint issues few years back. I was advised by my elderly relatives to consume  finger millet flour by means of the traditional millet flour pudding made in our homes. Being fussy about food since childhood, I don’t like this pudding. However, me too am aware that ragi has many health benefits.

Few years back I had tasted ragi biscuits at my cousin’s place which she had store-bought while even one of my colleague in office had got them made to order. I just looked those cookies but failed to seek the recipe. Cookies was the only form through which I preferred consuming ragi.

After few researches and seeking advise from some of my expert friends, here I am sharing the cookie recipe that I tried. I expect this recipe to work for most moms who want to feed ragi to their kids. Enjoy!!

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Recipe :

Ingredients :

  • 1/2 cup finger millet or ragi flour
  • 1/2 cup wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup butter (at room temperature)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • few drops of vanilla essence
  • milk as required

Method :

  1. Dry roast the millet flour and keep aside to cool.
  2. Sift the wheat flour, roasted millet flour and baking flour in a bowl.
  3. Chop the butter and add into it the sifted flour.
  4. Mix well till you get crumb like mixture.
  5. Add the vanilla essence.
  6. Sift the sugar into the above mixture.
  7. Mix well and knead into a dough using as much milk as required for binding.
  8. Refrigerate the dough for 20 mins by wrapping in a cling wrap.
  9. Pre-heat oven at 350 F.
  10. Roll the dough into thin sheet by dusting the surface with wheat flour.
  11. Using cookie cutters, cut out biscuits of desired shapes and put them in baking tray lined with parchment paper.
  12. Bake the biscuits for 10-15 mins in a preheated oven.

Note : Some mum’s don’t prefer using baking powder or soda. So here in this recipe you can avoid using baking powder completely. I was asked this question on one of the groups by a mother for her 7-12 months old kid. So to answer her query I was guided by one of my friend cum guide 🙂 that here the amount of butter is more than enough for leavening and so baking powder can be avoided.

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Cheesy Spinach bites

Mondays are usually vegetarian at our place. But just like kids, I don’t like vegetables much. At the same time, I am very petite and want to put on weight. My mum told me that eating cheese can increase weight. So thought I should include cheese in my diet. However, eating too much of cheese is also unhealthy.

So thought lets add something healthy to unhealthy and prepare some snacks. Here is the recipe for cheesy spinach bites

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Recipe :

Ingredients :

  • 1/2 cup cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup baby spinach leaves, chopped
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 tsp pepper powder
  • salt as per taste
  • 1/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1-2 tsp red chilli flakes
  • flour for coating
  • cornflour batter for coating (batter needs to be of dropping consistency)
  • breadcrumbs

Method :

  1. Heat water in a vessel. Once it boils, add the spinach into it. It will get cooked and you will achieve blanched spinach. Drain the blanched spinach.
  2. In another vessel, add cream cheese, blanched spinach, mozzarella, pepper powder, ginger garlic paste, chilli flakes and salt as per taste. Mix well and form a thick batter.IMG_20160718_121311-COLLAGE
  3. Take a plate and place a cling wrap on it. Spread the batter in square shape such that it is around 1/2 inch thick (It should like a slab). Wrap the slab in the cling wrap and refrigerate for minimum 30 minutes.
  4. Remove the slab from the cling wrap and cut into bite size squares.
  5. Take each square roll in the flour, then dip in the cornflour batter and coat with breadcrumbs. Roll the bite size square again in the cornflour batter and coat again in bread crumbs. Repeat for all other pieces.
  6. Heat an appe pan (the one I used to make Cheese Bread Oats pops) with 1-2 drops of oil in each hole.
  7. Put one piece in each hole and fry on all sides till brown.
  8. Cheesy Spinach bites are ready. Serve them hot with spicy ketchup.

 

Note : 1) Instead of cornflour batter, you can use beaten egg as well. 2) While frying, there is a tendency that the cheese might ooze out in spite of double coating. But that’s acceptable for me at least 😉

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Chicken Kebab Platter

It had been months and I realized I had not used my oven for anything other than to prepare bakery items. I had some boneless pieces in my freezer and it was a weekend. So a chicken starter item was on my mind.

I began my research on google. First my intention was to prepare only one type of kebab. But then I felt instead of preparing same type of 15 tikka why not prepare 3 different types of tikka each with 5 pieces. This way the taste will be retained on the taste buds and you wont even feel bored. I decided to prepare two spicy and one slight mild or slightly on sweeter side. My platter contained chicken tikka, chicken hariyali and chicken malai. Recipes are inspired from videos by Barnali and Madhura.

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Recipes :

I am giving reference measurements for 5-10 pieces. I usually marinate the chicken pieces a day prior so that they stand for an overnight. Here you can even add into the marination mixture, vegetables like onion, bell peppers, etc and even paneer (cottage cheese) cut into squares or cubes.

Chicken Tikka kebab 

Ingredients :

  • Boneless chicken pieces, medium-sized
  • 2 spoons yoghurt
  • 1/2 tsp Kashmiri red chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp kasuri methi
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • salt as per taste
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 1-2 bamboo skewers( this needs to be softened a little by placing in water )

Method :

  1. Mix all the ingredients except chicken pieces.
  2. Check the taste and add seasoning if required.
  3. Add the chicken pieces to the mixture  and coat them well.
  4. Allow them to stand for atleast 30 mins.
  5. Pre-heat the oven to 450 F.
  6. In the meanwhile, take a bamboo skewer and start inserting the marinated chicken pieces. Leave enough space in between each piece. You can even add marinated vegetable pieces.
  7. Take a baking tray and cover it with aluminium foil. The tray needs to be deep enough so that the pieces remain well above the surface of the tray. Place the bamboo skewer  such that each end of the skewer is on the opposite edge of the tray while the chicken pieces hang in between. Apply little oil on the pieces.IMG_20160717_121621
  8. Bake them for around 20 mins. Then remove from the oven and flip over on the side. Bake for another 20 mins on the other side.
  9. The tikka is ready to be served hot with pudina chutney.IMG_20160717_131327

 

Chicken Hariyali Kebab

Ingredients :

  • Boneless chicken pieces, medium-sized
  • 1/4-1/2 cup coriander leaves
  • 1/4 cup mint leaves
  • 1-2 tsp green chillies, finely chopped (amount depends on how spicy the chillies are)
  • 2 spoons of yoghurt
  • 1 tsp ginger garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala powder
  • 1/4 tsp kasuri methi
  • 1/4 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • pinch of black pepper powder
  • salt as per taste

Method :

  1. Grind green chillies, coriander leaves and mint leaves into a fine paste with as little water as possible.
  2. Now mix this with rest of the ingredients except the chicken pieces. Check the taste and add seasoning if required.
  3. Add the chicken pieces and coat them well. Marinate for at least 30 mins.
  4. Take a bamboo skewer and insert the marinated chicken pieces. Leave enough space in between the pieces.
  5. Arrange them on a baking tray similar to the way I mentioned for chicken tikka kebab. (As shown in the picture, the one in the center). Apply oil on the pieces.IMG_20160717_131103
  6. Bake them for 20 mins in an oven preheated at 450 F. Then remove from oven and flip on the other side. Now bake for another 20 mins on the other side.
  7. Chicken hariyali kebab are ready to be served.

 

Chicken Malai kebab :

Ingredients :

  • boneless chicken pieces, medium-sized
  • 1/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tsp vinegar or lemon juice
  • salt as per taste
  • 1/4 cup grated mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup cream cheese or yoghurt or hung curd
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tsp green chillies, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp kasuri methi
  • 1-2 tsp coriander leaves, chopped

Method:

  1. First apply ginger garlic paste, vinegar and salt to the chicken pieces and set aside.
  2. Now in a plate take grated mozzarella cheese and crush it to form a paste.
  3. To this add cream cheese and egg yolk and mix well.
  4. Now add green chillies, kasuri methi and coriander leaves, mix and form a thick paste.
  5. Add the chicken pieces and coat them well with this paste. Allow to stand for atleast 30 mins.
  6. Take a bamboo skewer and insert the marinated chicken pieces. Leave enough space in between the pieces.
  7. Arrange them on a baking tray similar to the way I mentioned for chicken tikka kebab. (As shown in the picture, the one at the left). Apply oil on the pieces.IMG_20160717_131103
  8. Bake them for 20 mins in an oven preheated at 450 F. Then remove from oven and flip on the other side. Now bake for another 20 mins on the other side.
  9. Chicken malai kebab are ready to be served.

 

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Chicken clear soup

This soup is actually my husband’s speciality and was taught to me by him. He had taken reference from some online site and prepared specially for me. It is very simply and looks and tastes very much similar to restaurant type.

Hope you like it and enjoy too!!

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Recipe :

Ingredients :

  • 200 gms chicken breast pieces
  • water
  • 1/2 tsp pepper powder
  • salt as per taste
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp cornflour
  • 2 strands of spring onion greens
  • 4 -5 tsp olive oil

Method:

  1. Take as much water as the amount of soup you required. Add pepper powder and salt as per taste. Boil the chicken pieces in this water.
  2. While boiling, you will find a layer of froth formation. Remove that layer with a spoon.
  3. Once the chicken pieces are cooked, put off the gas and remove the pieces and allow to cool.
  4. Retain the water that was used for boiling the chicken. This is the chicken stalk.
  5. Once the chicken pieces are cooled, shred them.IMG_20160716_154058
  6. Add as much water to the cornflour as thick or thin you require the soup to be. Mix it well so that no lumps are formed.
  7. Heat the chicken stalk. To it add the chicken pieces.
  8. Once the soup comes to a slight boil, add the cornflour mixture to it while stirring continuously so that there is no lump formation. The soup will begin to thicken once you add the cornflour.
  9. Add salt and pepper as per taste.
  10. Take an egg and beat it a little.
  11. Pour this into the soup while stirring vigorously. You will find fine strings being formed. The egg gets cooked in the heat of soup.
  12. Put off the gas and garnish with spring onion greens.
  13. In another little pan, heat the olive oil. It should be slightly boiling hot.
  14. Pour this cautiously into the soup.
  15. Chicken clear soup is now ready.

Note : Remember not to boil the soup too much as this will thicken the soup more once you have added the cornflour mixture.

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Chicken salad mayonnaise roll

Just like prawn rissois, chicken roll has been my favorite since childhood. I think it was one of the first bakery items my parents had given me to taste along with cupcakes. Pasteralia chicken roll was my favorite then and had set the standard for my taste buds. As years passed by different pastry shops emerged and they invented many more varieties of chicken rolls like chicken tikka roll, cafreal roll, etc and the initial chicken salad mayonnaise roll faded away.

Few years back while I was in Pune seeking my career, my husband introduced me to a cafe named Skips which served various breakfast platters. One of them was the chicken roll platter, after eating which I felt nostalgic. I was always under the impression that chicken roll was a western dish. However, I never found any roll  here in US take would again make me feel nostalgic.

Here I shall share my recipe in an attempt to prepare the same Chicken salad mayonnaise roll with Indian touch.

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Recipe :

Ingredients :

  • 200 gms of boneless chicken pieces
  • One big leaf of cabbage or lettuce
  • 4 small bread roll buns
  • butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1/4 cup white onion, chopped
  • 1/8 medium-sized capsicum, chopped
  • 1/2 medium-sized carrot, cut lengthwise and fine
  • 1/4-1/2 cup cabbage, shredded finely
  • few sprigs of coriander leaves, chopped
  • 1/4-1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • salt as per taste
  • 1 tsp red chilli sauce
  • 1 tsp green chilli sauce
  • 1/2 tsp italian herbs
  • 1/2 tsp pepper powder

Method:

  1. Boil chicken breast pieces with italian herbs, pepper powder and salt. (Take enough water for boiling and boil till water is reduced to bare minimum. This will cook the chicken and make it soft.)
  2. Shred the boiled chicken.IMG_20160716_154058
  3. Heat oil in a non-stick pan. Saute the onion and ginger garlic paste till onion become transparent and paste turns little brown.
  4. To it add carrot, capsicum, and cabbage and saute well.
  5. Once cooked, add red chilli and green chilli sauce and mix well.
  6. Now add the shredded chicken pieces. Then add salt and pepper powder as per taste.(Remember that you had already put some while boiling chicken, so add accordingly.)
  7. Check the taste and add seasoning if required. Garnish with coriander leaves.
  8. Allow the filling to cool.
  9. Meanwhile, make slits into the bread bun rolls and apply butter to the inner sides of the rolls.
  10. Take a piece of cabbage or lettuce leaf and spread it inside the roll.
  11. In the filling, add mayonnaise (as much as required) and mix.IMG_20160716_181417
  12. Take 1-2 spoonful of the filling and stuff inside the bun roll either above or below the leaf. Enjoy!!

Note: Some like the veggies to remain crunchy so while you saute the veggies leave them half cooked.

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Schezwan Sauce

After I decided to prepare spring rolls for my guests, suddenly it striked me that I need a sauce too for my chinese appetizer. Schezwan sauce was the perfect choice. But this lead to a train of questions in my mind. “Should I buy it? Will it be utilized later? Can I make it at home? What all ingredients will it require? Will they be readily available at home?”

So I started my research of going through various recipes for the same. It could be easily done with ingredients readily available at home and could also be used in future chinese recipes. So I finalized that I will make it at home.

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Recipe:

Ingredients :

  • 1/4 cup garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 inch ginger, finely chopped
  • Around 20 Kashmiri red chillies
  • 1/4 tsp soya sauce
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp pepper powder
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp red chilli sauce
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp vinegerIMG_20160715_100454-COLLAGE

Method :

  1. De-seed the red chillies and soak them in warm water for around 30-60mins.IMG_20160715_092405
  2. Drain the water and grind the chillies in a mixie into a fine paste.IMG_20160715_104925
  3. Heat oil in a non-stick wok. To it add garlic and ginger. Saute them well till garlic turns a little brown and looses its rawness.IMG_20160715_105444
  4. Then add the chilli paste and saute well till the oil separates and rawness of the chillies is lost.IMG_20160715_105824
  5. Add salt, pepper powder, soya sauce and red chilli sauce. Check the taste.
  6. Add some water, sugar and vinegar and cook till you get sauce consistency.
  7. Schezwan sauce is ready.

Vegetable Spring Rolls

We had invited my hubby’s colleague and his family over dinner to our place. They happened to be vegetarians. So the menu had to be veg. We are core non-vegetarians and if need to eat veg then we both, me and my husband require traditional festival type vegetarian food. I was thankful though that my parents are here and my mum being a vegetarian helped me in finalizing the menu and preparing it too.

One of the special items was spring rolls which I was going to try out for the first time. I took reference from Sanjeev Kapoor Khazana with a little additions of my own ;).

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Recipe :

Ingredients:

  • 2 fat bulbs of spring onions, chopped,
  • 2 stalks of spring onion greens, chopped
  • 1/4 of big capsicum, cut into juveniles
  • 1/4 cabbage, cut lengthwise
  • 1/2 big carrot, cut into juveniles
  • 1/4 cup sprouts
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp pepper powder
  • 1/4 tsp soya sauce
  • 1/2 tsp schezwan sauce
  • 8 spring roll sheet squares (I divided each into two to form rectangular sheets 16 in number)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour (maida)
  • water
  • oil for deep frying

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Method:

  1. Heat oil in a pan. To it add the onions, capsicum, carrot, cabbage, sprouts and saute.IMG_20160715_123514-COLLAGE
  2. Then add pepper powder, salt, soya sauce and schezwan sauce. Check the taste.
  3. Garnish with spring onion greens. Your filling is ready.IMG_20160715_180827
  4. To the 1/4 cup all purpose flour, add 4 tbsp water and prepare a sealant paste to seal the spring rolls .
  5. Take one sheet. Place a spoonful of filling at one shorter edge of the sheet. Apply the sealant paste at the corners of the sheet and also at the center of each of the longer edge. Then fold the longer edges by around 1 cm and start rolling from the shorter edge, the side having the feeling towards the other shorter edge. Apply sealant paste at this edge and seal the roll. Please refer pictures for more clear understanding.IMG_20160715_181551-COLLAGE
  6. Heat oil in a wok and deep fry the rolls.IMG_20160715_183300
  7. Remove on a paper towel and allow to cool for some time. Cut them diagonally in the middle.
  8. Serve hot with schezwan sauce.

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