Thursday, August 27, 2009

HHDD # 27 - Winner

Dear Foodies,

Enough of the enticing salad list and time to announce the winner of the HHDD -Summer Salads you say ? Here we go.....Firstly, Thank you all for participating in this beautiful event and for sending in your votes. After looking at the votes I got via the emails, I could'nt conclude a clear winner! Almost all of you had an equal number of votes!! So I asked Denise to make the winning call. This being the first edition of HHDD with her as the facilitator, it seemed apt to have her pick the winner. Thank you Denise.

And now drumrolls for the winner ...

Stephanie, you sure did come back to blogging with a perfect entry :-) Congratulations!

Head over to her blog in a few days to hear about the next HHDD :-)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

HHDD #27 - Voting begins

Dear foodies,

I'm back with the refreshing round-up of Hay Hay it's Donna Day # 27. We were celebrating Donna's summer salads all this month. I tried out a recipe for a lime & mint noodle salad which was wonderful and you guys have come up with many interesting variations to this recipe and others. Without further delay lets move to the list of entries I got...
Vote for your favorite Summer salad

Stephanie who blogs at Dispensing Happiness sent us a

Sugar Snap Pea, Cucumber, Mint & Tofu Summer Salad

Tartasacher who blogs at Mil Postres which means 1000 desserts

sent in Skewered fruit salad with chocolate sauce, from Spain.

Zaira who blogs at La Cocina de Zaira made a

tomatoes, watercress & Manchego cheese salad in olive oil

Dennis added a creative spin to recreate a

Cauliflower & Feta salad

Suzie who blogs at Munch+Nibble made a

Witlof with Zucchini, mint & feta salad

Our previous host, Soma from Ecurry sent us a colorful

Summer Salad with Citrus Lavender Dressing

Arfi from the blog HomeMadeS sent in a de-constructed salad for

Pear and Blue Cheese with Crispy Wontons

Barbara of the blog Winos and Foodies made

Zucchini Salad

My entry for a Lime & Mint noodle salad.

Denise who is the current facilitator of HHDD made a fabulous looking lime & mint noodle salad.

Now its time for you guys to choose your favorite summer salad. The winner will get to host the next round of HHDD, so make your pick now :) To place your vote, send me an email at akshayapaatram [at] gmail [dot] com within the next 5 days (Aug 22nd, midnight EST).
The entries have come in from all over the world and the innovation in each of these is fabulous! I huge thank you to everyone who participated :-) A special thanks to Denise for bringing back the HHDD event.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Cherry & Peach Crumble

Dear foodies,

The summer heat hasn't come to see us this year, but the fruits haven't been as mean to us. Strawberries, blueberries, pineapples, mango, cherries, peaches & nectarines have made their way into my kitchen. Eaten as is or cooked up in jams, compotes, cakes and muffins, I tried to enjoy the bounty as much as I could. Sometime I ended up being greedy and bought more than I could eat. A few sadly made they way into the bin, but the rest became gifts to friends :)

Cherries troubled me the most by going bad really fast, theres only so many I could eat in 2 days! So this time I made a quick and incredibly good dessert called crumble. The first time I made this dessert was from Sug's blog, last year. I've made numerous variations since and have loved all of them. I called it a crisp, but its also very similar to a crumble, an English dessert made with apples or any stone fruit. The original has a butter laden topping made with all purpose flour and sugar. I changed things up based on the crisp I've been making and turned it into a much more tasty and healthier dish.

make-shift cherry pitter - oil bottle lid
Pitting cherries can be a task you would wish you could avoid. There are some fancy gadgets that you could buy to help you out, but you could find similar stuff right in your kitchen. I used the lid of an oil bottle, you could also use a sturdy straw with a wide enough opening I guess. The hole was the perfect size and it was fun pitting cherries this way :D
Cherry & Peach Crumble
Ingredients: fills a 6-inch square dish
  • 3/4th cup - Sweet Cherries, pitted & halved
  • 3/4th cup - Peaches, cut in chunks
  • 1/2 tsp - Cornstarch (or all purpose flour)
  • 1/2 Tbsp - Sugar
  • 1 Tsp - Lemon juice
crumb topping
  • 1/4th cup - Pistachios
  • 1/3rd cup - Rolled oats
  • 1 Tbsp - Whole wheat flour
  • 11/2 Tbsp - light, Brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp - Olive oil
  • a pinch of salt (skip this if the nuts are salted)
  1. Combine the first 5 ingredients and allow to sit for 20-30mins. Pre-heat the oven to 375F.
  2. For the topping, coarsely powder the pistachio's and oats. Combine it with the whole wheat flour, sugar and olive oil to get a crumbly mixture.
  3. Transfer the fruits along with the juices to the baking dish, top it uniformly with the crumble topping and bake for 20-25mins or until the juices start to bubble and the topping gets a brown shade.
  4. Cool a bit and serve warm with a scoop of your favorite ice cream flavor or on it own :)
Note: Almost everything in this recipe is interchangeable. You can use any stone fruit, and switch pistachios with your choice of nuts. Jaggery or white sugar could be used as a sweetener. Add some vanilla essence or lemon/orange zest to the topping for another variation or some cardamom powder perhaps ?
This is a fabulous way to enjoy seasonal fruit when you get tired of eating them on their own. Not much work involved but the results are great. I sent this bowl to my neighbor and she called back as soon as she tasted it saying she wanted the recipe immediately. All the ingredients used in the topping are good for you, so anyone watching their diet can feel good about this one dessert atleast, don't count the ice-cream on the side though ;-)

I also made small cherry cakes following Deb's recipe for raspberry buttermilk cake. It turned out fab and the neighbor who got one of the cakes had compliments waiting for me when I met her next :) I skipped the eggs in the recipe and used flax seed powder instead.

The Cherry crumble if off to Vaishali who is celebrating British cuisine in It's a Vegan World July. She was kind to accept my last minute entry :) Simran is hosting AWED this month and has chosen British cuisine, so here's some for her too :) AWED also travels around the world each month and was initiated by DK. Thank you lovely ladies. Have a great week ahead all.

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