Green mac n cheese with asparagus

15 Apr

Recipe with some modifications from the one on the Campbell’s can. Sauce mixture is bit of an experiment but adds nice flavor and some health benefit.¬† As a side, asparagus was a hit and went well with the macaroni. Serves 3 very hungry people. ūüôā

Modified this recipe: https://www.campbells.com/kitchen/recipes/baked-macaroni-cheese/

ingredients, main dish

  • 1 can (10 1/2ounces) Campbell‚Äôs¬ģ Condensed Cheddar Cheese Soup
  • 3/4 cup of shredded Tillamook cheddar cheese
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 cups small macaroni pasta, cooked and drained
  • 1/2 cup plain dry bread crumbs

sauce mixture

  • 2 cups spinach
  • coarsely chopped jalapenos
  • minced garlic if you have it
  • 2/3 cup milk

How to Make It

Step 1

Heat the oven to 400¬įF.

Step 2

Cook garlic for several minutes on stove top with olive oil. Add spinach and cook until wilted. Allow to cool. Place mixture in blender, add milk, and blend until only see flecks of spinach, don’t over blend or you will get a juice!

Step 3

Stir the soup, black pepper, shredded cheese, and macaroni in pot. Add the green sauce mixture and stir until combined. Pour into a 1-quart casserole dish.

Step 4

Sprinkle bread crumbs over the macaroni mixture.

Step 5

Bake for 15 minutes. Then broil for 5 minutes until golden crust forms.

 

Side of asparagus

  1. Preheat an oven to 425 degrees F
  2. Place the asparagus into a mixing bowl, and drizzle with the olive oil. Toss to coat the spears, then sprinkle with salt, and pepper. Arrange the asparagus onto a baking sheet in a single layer.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven until just tender, 12 to 15 minutes depending on thickness (I suggest 10 mins to retain crunch). Sprinkle with lemon juice just before serving.

One Egg Chocolate Cake

27 Sep

oneeggcake2These were the simple, but magical words I typed into the Google search engine. I was mad that there was only one egg left in the fridge, and that the butter was salted and not unsalted. Luckily, this led me to discovering what is sure to become one of my favorite chocolate cake recipes. It’s fluffy but moist, sweet but not too sweet, and just chocolately enough.

I didn’t have golden syrup (seems to be a British thing), but if you do, go for it.

Here is the recipe, word for word from this lovely lady: http://www.food.com/recipe/one-egg-chocolate-cake-212511?scaleto=12.0&st=null&mode=us

One Egg Chocolate Cake

Ingredients

  • 4 tbsp (1/2 stick) butter
  • 1 tablespoon golden syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 1‚ĀĄ2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 drops vanilla essence
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3‚ĀĄ4 cup milk

Directions

  1. pre-heat oven to 190 degrees Celsius.
  2. grease a 20cm round cake tin and line base with baking paper.
  3. melt butter and syrup in a small saucepan.
  4. pour melted ingredients into a small bowl.
  5. add egg and sugar, beat well.
  6. sift cocoa, flour and BAKING POWDER together.
  7. fold sifted ingredients and essence into egg mixture.
  8. dissolve baking soda in milk.
  9. fold into egg mixture.
  10. pour mixture into prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched.
  11. leave in tin 5 minutes before turning out onto wire rack.

oneeggcake

Banana-Date Cake- inspired by grandma

6 Sep

bananadatecake1

It’s so weird to be back! Equally weird to see that many of you, whom I used to follow, are still posting regularly. I guess I’m the only one who fell off the wagon. For two years.

I still reference this blog sometimes for recipes. That’s what happened today, I looked up Cold Asian Noodle Salad because my mom requested it for dinner. I, shamefully, have not cooked much for months besides quick quesadillas and sandwiches. I bake on a monthly basis though. Baking always came easier to me than cooking. Plus, there’s that sweet tooth.

Med school has kept me busy. I didn’t have a summer. Spent 6 weeks studying for my board exam, day and night, and thankfully passed. I started my third year in July with my clinical clerkships, or rotations. I work in the hospital for free (actually my tuition goes towards paying for my experience) and learn the skills of the trade as I “rotate” through different specialties. So far I’ve finished one month of orthopedic surgery and one month of family medicine (FM). I’m starting my next month of FM on Tuesday (thank god for Labor Day holiday!). I’m loving it so far. Minus the almost 2 hours of commuting daily and the exhaustion when I come home.

Anyway, on to the reason I’m posting today. I wanted to share and catalog this recipe for a Banana-Date cake. I watched my grandma make it last month when she came to visit us, and tried to replicate it as closely as I could. I was too lazy to take notes so I had to try making it a couple times before it came out right. Essentially, free-handing it. I looked at other recipes for dense cakes like this to make sure my flour to baking power ratio and number of eggs was okay. This time it came out very well so I’ll stick to this recipe from now on! Continue reading

M&M cookies and chocolate cake- the stuff of dreams

14 Sep

Why hello there!! I did not in fact fall off the face of the earth.¬†I have just been busy with medical school. It’s kind of life consuming.¬†I¬†just finished my first set of block exams for my first semester. (Block exams are like finals. We have them 3 times a semester. Yep…) I have only been in school for 6 weeks and yet it feels like it’s been a lifetime. Last night I slept for 12 hours, to make up for my sporadic sleep schedule during the past week or so. The latest I stayed up to study for a test was 4am. I couldn’t help it, there was just so much to learn! I had 4 major exams and thank god I passed all of them (and passed them well) and was able to enjoy my weekend. All I have been doing is sleeping, eating, and watching TV. Oh, and baking, of course! I wanted to whip up some cookies for my wonderful study partner who helped me survive the torment of 10 hour study days.¬†

m&m cookies

These cookies are amazing. Perhaps the best I have made yet. And very, very¬†easy to prepare. I found the recipe here. The secret ingredient is Jello vanilla pudding mix. Who would’ve thought! It really improves the texture and makes them melt-in-your-mouth yummy. I also liked the use of mini M&Ms and mini chocolate chips, they mix into the batter better than the normal-sized ones.

texassheetcake

I also made a chocolate cake (called Texas Sheet cake)¬†from a recipe in Joy of Cooking (below). AMAZING, AMAZING chocolate cake. Not too fudgy, more like a cocoa flavored cake. Makes sense since the only chocolate ingredient I used was cocoa powder. ūüôā Very moist, very delicious.

texassheetcakerecipe

Neither of these recipes are low fat or low sugar. They are kind of fatty, but not overly sweet. Sometimes, you just have to treat yourself (and your friends)! It beats going to the bakery. At least I know what I put in my sweets! Fresh ingredients, and some of them are organic too. Makes me feel good.

Back to the daily grind on Monday, but for now I am going to savor these sweet moments (haha, I am so funny, and corny) and kick back and relax. Hope you all have a lovely weekend!!

Happy Mother’s Day!

12 May

165999_10102274031484496_888468607_n

Oh my, has it really been more than two months since I posted on this blog? Yikes, I believe it has! Bad Nimmie. 

I have tried some new recipes in the past couple months, but have been too distracted by other things to write about it.

Anyway, this photo above is the breakfast I made for my mom this morning. She has to work today. She’s a pharmacist at a hospital, and people need their meds on Mother’s Day too!¬†I got up at 7:30am so I could make fresh waffles from scratch. Here is a previous¬†blog post with¬†the recipe. They were delicious! I had one and a half and so did my mom. ūüôā¬† Continue reading

Quick Asian-style shrimp salad

31 Mar

shrimpsalad

Disclaimer: Forgot to take a photo, so closest resembling photo above pulled from: http://iamahoneybee.com/2012/01/24/spinach-salad-with-shrimp-avocado-and-grapefruit-with-citrus-vinaigrette/

This is a really great salad that my mom has been making recently. It’s very quick to put together, sounds fancy, and¬†tastes¬†delicious- just how I like my recipes to be!¬† And of course, it’s very healthy and¬†satisfying.

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Quick Asian-style shrimp salad

  • 1 cup¬†cooked shrimp
  • 3 cups chopped lettuce
  • 1/2 avocado, cut into bite-size cubes
  • 2 medium oranges, cut into bite-size cubes
  • Dressing: 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon olive oil, drizzle of sesame oil, drizzle of hot chili oil, drizzle of agave nectar, 1 tablespoon¬†sesame seeds, splash of vinegar, 1/2 lemon juice

We buy a large bag of cooked frozen shrimp from Costco and thaw the shrimp in warm water for about 5 minutes. The rest is just chopping up the veggies, adding shrimp, and tossing it all with the dressing.¬†And that’s it, you have a quick meal!¬† You can modify the dressing as you like, adding a little more of a certain oil or a little less of another. I find that you can have a really flavorful salad even with a drizzle of a couple of different oils!¬†I like to make olive oil the star of the show since it’s good for you.¬† The agave nectar balances the salty taste.¬†

—-

I try to eat healthy most of the time and save my indulgences for rich, home-cooked meals like thai curry and creamy pasta. Since a good chunk of my days is spent at work, I make sure to bring food from home and keep my cube/staff fridge stocked with healthy snacks. Recent snack¬†has been flaxseed crackers from Trader Joe’s, peanut butter, and raisins.¬†¬†This keeps me away from the vending machine. It’s important to keep your body nourished!

Anyway, good night and hope you had a lovely Easter!

Recipes, cookbooks, and future directions

24 Mar
Above is a tray of Cold Asian Noodle Salad that I made for the cookbook release/tasting party at my mom’s hospital. In addition to this one, I also had recipes for Chicken Enchiladas and Chickpea and Potato Curry printed in this employee cookbook. All the recipes are signed off with my name and “Daughter of Navneet, Pharmacy”. My mom chuckled at that, but she deserves credit too! ūüôā Also, I’m not an employee¬†of their hospital so some explanation of my presence in the cookbook is required.¬†They are selling copies of this to raise money for the March of Dimes foundation (this explains the baby on the cover). I am pretty excited that I officially am a published author! Haha…baby steps. Get it, baby steps?? Baby on cover? You get it.

Continue reading

Caesar Salad (Well, sort of…)

12 Mar

Image

This is not Caesar salad per se, but the closest that I get to it at home. I don’t have time to deal with eggs, garlic, and anchovies, I save that for the restaurants! You might think it’s not worth dedicating an entire post to lettuce, but something wonderful happens when you chop it up and toss it with ranch dressing, freshly shredded parmesan, and a pinch of salt and pepper. That’s the magic I’m talking about here!¬† Continue reading

Dinner for 12 strangers

25 Feb

ucladinner

I went to a UCLA alumni event last night called Dinner for 12 strangers. (I’m the third person from the right.)¬†I finally did it, woo hoo! I have been wanting to go to one of these dinners since I was an undergraduate student. But, I didn’t have a car at the time and it was hard to figure out how to get to someone’s house clear on the other side of Los Angeles.¬†Okay, maybe the larger reason was that large social gatherings with complete strangers are not on my list of favorite things in life. At this dinner, though, I happened to know the host and I brought a friend along with me. I think the experience would have been just as enjoyable either way, but it’s hard to take that first step and try something new on your own. Lesson learned here is that sometimes you just have to get out there and who knows, you could have a great time when you least expect it!¬† Continue reading

Chickpea and Potato Curry

16 Feb

Chickpea and Potato Curry

Dear WordPress friends, it’s been too long!¬†I’m here today to share a recipe for an Indian vegetarian dish that I made this past Wednesday. My mom wrote the recipe and wanted me to test it out to make sure it could be followed by a cook who is new to Indian cooking (i.e. me). As it turns out, my mom forwarded my blog information to a woman at her¬†hospital¬†who is putting together a cookbook with recipes from employees and their family. An “Employee Recipe Book” essentially, to raise money for the March of Dimes foundation. (Just as background, my mom is a pharmacist.) I’m excited to¬† have my recipes be part of a cookbook! They requested an Indian recipe from us as well, and so that’s why my mom wrote this recipe and had me test it out. I was happy to have another push to learn to make some yummy Indian food. ūüôā

This Chickpea and Potato Curry is vegetarian and very, very healthy. It is packed with protein and full of flavorful¬†spices, including a nice addition of ginger and garlic. (You could always make a ginger-garlic paste to use in recipes like this. I used one that my dad had made earlier in the month.)¬†Fat content is very minimal. This dish can be enjoyed on its own with a side of plain yogurt, over a bed of rice, or with roti. I’ve been trying to cut carbs from my diet lately, so I just had it on its own with the yogurt. It’s very tasty! Sometimes if I have mini pita pockets¬†in the fridge, I also pack one with my lunch so I can dip it into the curry. This is a nice option if you don’t want to make roti.¬† Continue reading