Monthly Archives: September 2020

Chicken Chilli Dry

My top favourite dish in Pakistani – Chinese cuisine….. something I eat at least once a week when I am in Pakistan and crave almost everyday when I am in Australia. So just to satisfy that craving in a land where no one knows how to make it, here I am who has mastered this unique recipe after several trials 🙂

Ayesha’s Kitchen

Ingredients:

FOR CHICKEN

  • 1 large size chicken breast (cut into paper strips)
  • 2 tbspns lemon juice
  • 4 tbspns oil
  • 3 tbspns corn flour
  • Salt & pepper
  • A generous pinch of red chilli flakes
  • A generous pinch of garlic powder (about ½ tspn heap full)
  • A generous pinch of ginger powder (about ½ tspn heap full)
  • A generous pinch of chicken salt
  • 4 tbspns dark soy sauce
  • FOR STIR FRY
  • 2 tbspns sesame oil + 4 tbspns cooking oil
  • 4 – 5 large green chillies (seeds removed & cut into julienne)
  • 1 tbspn ginger garlic paste
  • 4 tbspns oyster sauce
  • A splash of hot sauce/ chilli sauce

Method:

  1. Combine everything given for chicken in a mixing bowl and mix. Keep aside for 20 minutes at room temperature.
  2. Heat some oil in a pan for shallow frying. Fry chicken pieces in batches for 3 – 5 minutes per batch until the chicken is golden. (medium heat)
  3. Once all the chicken is done, keep it aside until needed.
  4. Heat some oil & sesame oil in a wok and sauté ginger garlic paste. Increase the heat to high and add ginger julienne and fry further for 2 minutes and then add green chillies. Stir fry and add oyster sauce.
  5. Add fried chicken pieces, stir and coat the chicken in the sauce and dish out on to your platter with rice.
  6. Serve.

Egg and Cheese Croissant

My variation of Egg n Cheese croissant, a perfect combo for winter mornings…..

Ayesha’s Kitchen

Ingredients:

  • 4 all butter croissants
  • 4 eggs + 4 tbspns cooking cream
  • Some room temperature butter
  • 8 cheese slices (I use Devondale processed)
  • ½ cup mayonnaise (I use Heinz, it is the best)
  • Some salt & pepper

Method:

  1. Cut the croissants from the middle horizontally and get them ready to toast.
  2. Cut each cheese slice in 4 triangles.
  3. Meanwhile, beat eggs with salt, pepper & cream and make 4 small omelettes in butter. The cream and the whisking will make it fluffy with folds.
  4. Apply some mayo inside the slit of toasted croissants and lay a layer of cheese, then omelette and then another layer of cheese. (2 slices of cheese per croissant)
  5. Serve hot with steamy hot chocolate or coffee.

South Indian Fish Curry

A very easy pleasy summer squeezy fish dinner, light on stomach & time 🙂

Ayesha’s Kitchen

Ingredients:

  • 500 gms boneless fish chunks (I use Gummy in Australia, you can use any) + 2 tbpns lemon juice & salt
  • 1 onion (grated)
  • 1 tomato (chopped)
  • 8 – 10 curry leaves
  • 1 tspn nigella seeds + 1 tspn fennel seeds + a pinch of carom seeds + 1 tbspn coriander seeds + 1 tspn cumin seeds (crushed together)
  • 1 generous pinch of turmeric powder
  • 1 tspn Kashmiri red chilli powder
  • ¼ cup cooking oil + ¼ cup cooking mustard oil
  • 1 tbspn ginger & garlic paste
  • 4 green chillies (sliced)
  • Some warm water

Method:

  1. Marinate fish chunks in lemon juice & salt and keep refrigerated for 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil (cooking + mustard) and fry onion & ginger garlic paste until it is light golden in color but not brown or dark brown.
  3. Add curry leaves and green chillies and saute for 2 minutes until the flavour comes out.
  4. Add tomatoes and, salt, chilli powder & turmeric and cook covered on medium heat for 3 – 5 minutes or until the tomatoes are mushy.
  5. Add some hot water and cook the masala. You may need to add little water multiple times to cook the masala. Do not add all the water at the same time otherwise the masala will be very over cooked and bad in taste. This process is called “Bhoonna” in Pakistani cooking.
  6. When the oil oozes out and the masala looks cooked, add fish and the spice mix and give gentle stir. (We add these spices at this point because we don’t want them to burn or over cook and it affects the color of the curry too)
  7. Add 1 cup of warm water and cook covered on low heat for 15 to 20 minutes until the fish is cooked and the curry oozes out the oil.
  8. Garnish with some coriander if you want and serve.

Home-made American Diner Style Hash Browns

There are more than 10 ways to make hash browns depending in which part of the world you are eating. This is the most easy & authentic recipe for American diner style hash brown which complements anything you make for breakfast.

Ayesha’s Kitchen

ALERT: It is highly addictive!

The buttery crispiness of potatoes is so irresistible!

Ingredients:

  • 2 potatoes (Russet/ Australia/ Ruby/ any potato of your choice)
  • Some butter at room temperature
  • Some cooking oil
  • A generous pinch of salt

Method:

  1. Grate the potatoes and put the gratings in a sieve. Run cold water through until all the starch is gone and water runs clear. Turn off the tap.
  2. Keep the water draining for 10 minutes and then spread it on a clean and dry kitchen towel and pat dry the potato gratings. Put the potato back in a clean dry bowl.
  3. Heat the frying pan and melt some butter and oil. Take a handful of grated potatoes and place it in the oil and spread it even. With the flipping spoon give it a shape and let it cook for at least 5 minutes on medium heat or until the side is crispy. Flip it and season with some salt and let the other side cook for 5 – 8 minutes. Splash some oil on the sides to give it the extra crispiness.
  4. Take it out on the plate and serve with some poached eggs, mushrooms & smoked salmon or anything you like.

Chicken Lasagna

Chicken lasagna….. Honestly there is nothing as such! it is just a variation made by people who prefer chicken over beef. I can eat it, like it but I can never give it the place of traditional beef lasagna 🙂

The recipe below is a very Pakistani version of Lasagna, loaded with cheese, overused herbs & garlic & of course black olives, because that it what makes every recipe Italian or Mediterranean in Pakistan 😀  but it really handy for kids play dates, birthdays, tea parties & all kind of showers.

Ayesha’s Kitchen

 

Ingredients:

FOR RED SAUCE

  • 750 gms chicken mince
  • 2 tbspns ginger garlic paste
  • ½ cup oil
  • 1 cup fresh button mushrooms (sliced) (optional)
  • 2 cans tomato
  • ½ cup tomato paste
  • 1 tbspn dried Italian herb mix
  • ½ cup sweet chilli sauce
  • Salt & pepper to taste

FOR WHITE/ BACHAMEL SAUCE

  • 50 gms butter
  • 1 tbspn heapful plain flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup cooking cream
  • 1 cup cheese mix (cheddar, mozzarella & parmesan) (shredded)
  • A pinch of salt & pepper
  • A generous pinch of chicken salt

FOR LASAGNA

  • 1 packet/ carton instant lasagna sheets
  • 1.5 cups cheese mix (cheddar, mozzarella & parmesan) (shredded)
  • Capsicum (cut into slices)
  • Tomato (cut into slices)
  • Some sliced black olives
  • Italian herb mix mixed with red chilli flakes to garnish

Method

FOR RED SAUCE

  1. Heat oil in a wide sauce pan and fry ginger garlic paste until it gives a cooked look which is light gold and light crispy. Add chicken mince, break it into pieces while cooking until all the moisture dries and oil oozes out. Add tomato paste, canned tomatoes, sweet chilli sauce, salt, pepper & Italian herb mix and let it simmer until the tomatoes break down and the mixtures starts looking like Bolognese sauce. (on low – medium heat – the process should take around 30 minutes)
  2. Add mushrooms and let it cook on low heat for further 5 minutes. (We didn’t add mushrooms with chicken because no one likes over cooked mushrooms)
  3. Remove from heat and let it cool.

FOR BECHAMEL SAUCE

  1. Mix milk & cream.
  2. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat and add flour. Cook until the flour is light gold in color. Gradually add half n half (milk & cream mixture) with constant whisking until all the mixture is poured. Continue whisking until the sauce begins to thicken. Add cheese and continue mixing.
  3. Add salt, pepper & chicken salt, stir & remove from heat. Let it cool until needed.

FOR LASAGNA

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  2. Now is the fun part….. “assembling lasagna”. In a rectangular Pyrex baking tray, lay a thin layer of bechamel sauce, followed by Bolognese sauce and lasagna sheets. This layer of sauce at the bottom will help in the cooking of lasagna sheet by providing a moist environment.
  3. Continue layering until the final layer is red sauce. Add shredded cheese on top with some capsicum & tomato rings, sprinkle some Italian herb mix and bake on the middle rack of the oven for 30 – 35 minutes, until the lasagna sheets are cooked through & the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  4. Take the dish out of the oven and let it rest for 7 – 8 minutes before cutting into portions.
  5. Serve.

Beef Chilli Dry

Beef chilli dry is a Chinese – Pakistani dish available in Cafes, oriental restaurants and continental restaurants in Pakistan. It is my favorite because I love the flavor of green chillies, garlic & braised tender beef.

I have created this recipe after numerous failed recipes….. here it is 🙂

Ayesha’s Kitchen

Ingredients:

BEEF:

  • ½ kilo chuck steak/ beef schnitzel (cut against the grain into thin slices)
  • 2 tbspns olive oil
  • 2 tbspns ginger & garlic paste
  • A generous pinch of salt
  • ½ tspn black pepper
  • A pinch of white pepper
  • 2 tbspns soy sauce
  • 2 tbspns lemon juice
  • 3 tbspns corn flour

FOR STIR FRY

  • Some oil for frying
  • 2 tbspns sesame oil
  • 1 tbspn ginger garlic paste
  • 4 large green chillies (remove seeds and julienne cut)
  • Some green part of spring onions chopped
  • 2 tbspns oyster sauce
  • Some sesame seeds to garnish at the end

Method

  1. Cut steak into thin slices and marinate in all the ingredients given for beef. Mix and keep aside for 40 – 50 minutes, refrigerated.
  2. Heat oil in a pan for shallow frying and fry beef slices in batches. 5 minutes on medium heat per batch. Do not over crowd the pan while frying.
  3. Keep the fried beef aside until needed.
  4. In a wok, heat some sesame seed oil and fry ginger garlic paste until fragrant. Add green chillies, spring onion sprigs and saute’ for a minute on high flame.
  5. Add oyster sauce, mix & add beef strips. Give a final stir for 1 minute on high flame and serve hot with boiled rice with garnish if sesame seeds.