Sharmi on the Trot

Travelling, Exploring, Eating…

Archive for the month “March, 2015”

Decadent Weekend Breakfast on a Weekday!

So what if it’s a weekday? It doesn’t stop me from creating weekend breakfasts. In fact, I feel all the more happy because as I dig into delicious food, I feel a spring in my step. The day starts well and generally it ends on a rather happy note.
There are many variations of this North African dish – Eggs with bell
peppers or Shakshuka. Mexico celebrates eggs with tomatoes as Huevos Rancheros. I try to walk on an unconventional path and often make a mixture of the two. And I often eat it on Sundays with a large mug of coffee — it’s heaven in the pan!

2 Eggs
1 small bell pepper (chopped)
1 small carrot (chopped)
1 small onion (chopped)
4 cloves of garlic (chopped)
1 small tomato (chopped)
2 button mushrooms (chopped)
2 tbs tomato puree
1 tbs olive oil
1 tsp chilly flakes
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp smoked paprika
Salt to taste
Coriander to garnish

– Heat the oil in a pan.
– Saute the onion, garlic and chilly flakes till the mixture is soft and has a lovely reddish tinge.
– Add the bell pepper, carrot and smoked paprika. Cook till soft.
– Add the mushrooms, tomato and salt to season.
– Add the tomato puree and oregano. Cook till everything is nice and squidgy.
– Make a small parting in the middle of the vegetable mixture and crack the eggs.
– If you like your eggs to be runny, cover the pan with a lid for about
a minute till it cooks. I cover it for about 3 minutes till the yolks
cook through. Garnish with coriander.
– Enjoy either with bread or as it is, straight off the pan!

Yes, that's what breakfast looks like!

Yes, that’s what breakfast looks like!

A close up! Enjoying the hot eggs!

A close up! Enjoying the hot eggs!

PS: I love making this for family or friends. It tastes much better if
you make it for about 4-5 people.

Chicken and Spinach tossed in Oyster Sauce

I was recently chatting with a friend on a day when Delhi experienced sudden showers. I was literally in bed all day and only dragged myself out to eat. The weather was perfect for deep-fried goodness and lots of coffee.
We Indians love the Indo-Chinese concoctions we’ve created – Sweetcorn soup, Chicken Manchurian and the classic Chilly Chicken. So when O mentioned her homemade versions of chilly chicken (she makes it dry, deep fried or lathered in gravy) it instantly made me drool. So out came the pans, laziness all forgotten. Keeping O’s recipe in mind, I played around with the basic to create something hot and delicious, perfect for a rainy evening.

500g boneless chicken (cut into bite-sized pieces)
1 cup baby spinach
8-10 cloves of garlic
1 inch ginger
1 big onion
1 green bell pepper
2 tbs Dark Soy sauce
2 tbs Vinegar
2 green chilly (optional)
3 tbs Oyster sauce
1 tbs vegetable oil
Salt to taste
Coriander to garnish


– Grate about 5 cloves garlic and the ginger together. Mix with salt,
soy and vinegar and add to chicken. Marinade for 30 minutes.

– Chop the remaining cloves of garlic, onion, bell pepper and chilly.

– Heat the oil in a wok. Add the garlic, onion and chilly first. Once
softened, add the bell pepper and fry for about 2 minutes.

– At this point add the marinated chicken. Then the Oyster sauce.

– Once the chicken is almost cooked through, add the baby spinach and stir everything in the pan till done to perfection.

– Garnish with coriander and serve hot!

I felt like eating it straight out of the pan!

I felt like eating it straight out of the pan!

All pretty and healthy!

All pretty and healthy!

Roast Chicken with Sumac, Paprika, Lime and a Sweet Chilly Glaze

The combination of sumac and smoked paprika is so heavenly. I love the mixture of smokiness and tangy fruitiness on roasted chicken. On my recent trips to Egypt and Spain, I raided local markets as usual and came home with spices. Instead of the usual mixture of the two, I went one step further this time, adding more tanginess, heat and sweet to the chicken. It barely takes anytime to cook, you need one pan (less washing up) and you have a tasty meal. A perfect supper for one.

1 chicken breast
1 clove garlic (chopped)
1 tsp sumac
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp honey
1 tsp chilly flakes
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbs olive oil
Red wine to deglaze the roasting pan
Coriander to garnish

Pre-heat the oven to 200’C.
In a bowl mix the oil, sumac, paprika, salt and lemon zest. In another bowl, mix the honey and chilly flakes.
Make incisions on the chicken breast. Coat it with the spice mixture.
Strew the chopped garlic and lemon juice on the chicken.
Put it into the oven for 25 minutes at 180’C.
With 10 minutes to go, add the sweet chilly mixture on the chicken and let it continue roasting.
After 25 minutes, take the chicken out and cover it in foil to retain the moistness.
Deglaze the roasting pan with red wine on the burner to make a sauce.
Serve the chicken with the sauce and a scattering of coriander.

All moist, tangy, sweet, sour and delicious!

All moist, tangy, sweet, sour and delicious!

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