Tag Archives: appetizers

Fresh Figs & Lemongrass

Delicious fresh figs all plump, sweet, super soft and dripping with nectar. I picked a bunch of fresh figs from my friend Devi’s garden a few days ago. The temptation to eat these figs right off the tree was hard to resist, I ate a couple right away and brought the rest home.

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Fresh figs right off the tree – when fruit is this fresh it’s hard to mess with them by adding them to salads or making a dessert of some sorts. We just ate them in their pure fresh fig form – just deliciousūüėč.¬† To present¬†these figs as a dessert option that same evening I served a few with aged Parmesan cheese and walnuts. Added a small glass of sweet port and I had the makings of a deliciout fig inspired all-natural dessert. Continue reading Fresh Figs & Lemongrass

Heirloom Tomato and Goat Cheese Tart

After going to the Heirloom Tomato Festival in Los Gatos and purchasing a few giant heirloom tomatoes, I decided to make a tomato tart that evening.  I had saved a recipe a while back from Ina Garten for a tomato tart with goat cheese, and now seemed the perfect time to try it out with my newly bought tomatoes.

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Cream Cheese Edible Art with Herbs & Edible Flowers

I’m a huge fan of edible leaves and flowers from the garden, and when I see edible flowers incorporated into a food recipe I have to give it a try. The inspiration for this recipe came from Sunset Magazine’s Western Edition¬†March issue. I looked through the entire magazine but what caught my eye is guess what? Flowers and herbs! Lovely flowers and herbs so beautifully shown off to perfection, in butter of all things.

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This got me thinking, I mean if I am going to all this trouble to make this gorgeous tapestry of edible flowers and herbs, I want to share it with lots of people like at a party,¬†and serving bread and butter even if it is this pretty didn’t sound so appealing. ¬†On the other hand, serving herbed cream cheese beautifully decorated with herbs and edible flowers? ¬†Now, that I can see serving with¬†crackers for any occasion. ¬†That’s how I came up with this Cream Cheese Edible Art – Cream Cheese with Herbs & Edible Flowers. Continue reading Cream Cheese Edible Art with Herbs & Edible Flowers

Dave’s Amuse Bouche. Goat Cheese Wrapped in Seaweed.

Amuse bouche is a complimentary, bite-sized portion of savory food served before a meal or in between courses at a restaurant.

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When I invited our friends Dave and Rose to come over for dinner one evening to show us how to make pasta and tiramisu that they had learnt on their Italian holiday in Tuscany; Dave brought an interesting amuse bouche Рgoat cheese wrapped in seaweed.

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This was a¬†very unique amuse bouche because I would never think to combine an Asian flavor like seaweed with a western flavor like goat cheese. Dave’s amuse bouche was a delectable little bite that packed a ton of flavor. Here is the recipe.

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Goat Cheese Tart with Sundried Tomatoes

This is a recipe I got from watching Barefoot Contessa’s show on Food Network. ¬†Ina Garten was making a beautiful goat cheese tart with thinly sliced zucchini. ¬†It looked positively gorgeous. But I am not a big fan of zucchini – no offense to zucchini fans. This recipe also called to make a homemade pastry crust – and I am not a fan of that either.

I decided to take Ina Garten’s recipe and make it my own.¬†I used a store bought frozen piecrust (the kind you have to roll out) for the goat cheese tart, and instead of zucchini I used a jar of sundried tomatoes as my topping. ¬†To turn this delectable tart into a meal – I served it on Sunday evening with a tossed green salad as part of my Sunday Salad routine. ¬† Continue reading Goat Cheese Tart with Sundried Tomatoes

Raita. Indian Yogurt Side Dish with Tomatoes and Onions

Raita, an Indian yogurt side dish is very popular in our house. If the family could have it every day with their meal they would. ¬†It’s basically yogurt with raw vegetables such as tomatoes, onions, cilantro and cucumbers along with some spices. ¬†In many Indian households raita is used to soothe the palate when the main Indian meal is too spicy, as the cool yogurt raita helps to neutralize the heat of chili.

Continue reading Raita. Indian Yogurt Side Dish with Tomatoes and Onions

Cabbage and Onion Pakoras

Pakoras are deep fried Indian fritters made with chickpea flour and chopped veggies. I haven’t made pakoras in ages, mainly because I stopped deep frying foods at home years ago in an effort to eat healthier. But somehow a couple weekends ago¬†I was craving homemade pakoras. I’ve had pakoras at Indian restaurants many times, but there is something about having homemade pakoras that is ¬†– well, let’s just say like anything homemade, it has a taste onto it’s own. Continue reading Cabbage and Onion Pakoras

Edible Flower and Herb Embellished Goat Cheese

For her birthday Rani wanted to hang out with her friends in our garden.¬†The timing was perfect, as I had just attended a book-signing event from authors Stefani Bittner & Alethea Harampolis on their new book Harvest. ¬†I was eager to try something from the book and¬†Rani’s birthday picnic became the perfect opportunity to make a goat cheese recipe with edible flowers and herbs for this soiree.

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Veena’s Tomato and Caramelized Onion Chutney

My friend Veena is an outstanding South Indian cook.  Anything and everything Veena makes is delicious. Her vegetarian dishes are in a league of their own. Chutneys, appetizers, idlis, curries, sweets, you name any Tamil food and Veena can make it taste amazing. Here I have chosen to share with you her Tomato and Caramelized Onion chutney that she served with some idlis when I visited her one day.
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Padmini’s Red Bell Pepper Chutney with Roasted Peanuts

If you like peanut butter and bell peppers like I do, you will love this chutney. The red bell peppers in this chutney give it a nice sweetness, while the roasted peanuts add a nutty fragrance and creamy texture.¬†My friend Padmini made this red bell pepper¬†chutney when my Dad and I went to her place for lunch one day. She¬†served this chutney with some idlis, and it was so unique and delicious that¬†I asked Padmini for the recipe to share and she passed it on. Try this chutney with idlis, zucchini fritters, carrot fritters, black-eyed pea fritters, or you can have it as a dip with fresh veggies and crackers. ¬†Here is the recipe. Continue reading Padmini’s Red Bell Pepper Chutney with Roasted Peanuts