Cookbookmaniac
  • Asian Recipes
    Fortune Cookies – Happy Chinese New Year!!
    Gung Hei Fat Choi!! Happy Chinese New Year!! I absolutely love this time of year. It's my version of Christmas. The streets are decorated with red and gold signs, lanterns and flowers. They are also full of people lining up to watch the parade of lion dancing, firecrackers, and talented musicians smashing away on huge drums and gongs. Everyone is so happy and giving, wishing you good fortune for the new year to come. Isn't it wonderful! My huge family always gathers together for a feast and silent prayer. Don't get me wrong, I am not religious but I feel a quiet grace when I thank my ancestors and the deities that be, for the good fortune that I have presently and for the many that I will receive in the future. It is humbling and I feel very grateful. I decided to make fortune cookies for my Chinese New Year theme blog post. Like a diligent little elf, I made sure I did my research before I started. Double-checking that I had the right recipe and information. It was to my utter devastation that I found out, Fortune Cookies are not traditionally Chinese. They were concocted by some Asian cook in an American kitchen. It felt like someone has just told me Santa Claus doesn't exist. So I threw the idea away and started looking for something else. But when the time came to make something, the Fortune Cookie idea wouldn't leave me. So, what if it isn't traditional?…
  • Asian Recipes
    Falafel – so so yummy!
    Falafel is a fried ball or patty made from spiced fava beans or chickpeas or a combination of the two. Originally from Egypt, falafel is a popular form of street food or fast food in the Middle East. Falafel is usually served in a pita-like bread called lafa, either inside the bread, which acts as a pocket, or wrapped in a flat bread. The falafel balls, whole or crushed, may be topped with salads, pickled vegetables and hot sauce, and drizzled with tahini-based sauces. Falafel balls may also be eaten alone as a snack or served as part of a mezze. Unlike many other bean patties, in falafel, the beans are most commonly not cooked prior to use. Instead they are soaked with bicarbonate of soda, then ground with the addition of a small quantity of onion, parsley, and spices such as cumin and coriander. The mixture is shaped into balls or patties, then deep fried. Sesame seeds are sometimes added before frying; this is particularly common when falafel is served as a dish on its own rather than as a sandwich filling. Recipe adapted from New Flavours of the Jewish Table by Denise Phillips 250g dried chickpeas 3 tablespoons of bulghar wheat 1 large brown onion 5 garlic cloves 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley leaves 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh coriander leaves 3 tablespoons ground cumin 3 tablespoons ground coriander 2 teaspoons baking powder 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper 1 egg 3 tablespoons of…
  • Cheap Eats Recipes
    Eggplant Parmigiana – A Vegetarians Delight
    I've never been a big fan of eggplant. The oblong, deep purple nightshade has always struck me as somewhat bland and mealy. One day, Pizzaboy's Italian Aunt, made eggplant parmigiana as an entree for a Christmas Eve meal. I have been converted ever since. Parmigiana is a classic Southern Italian dish made with thick slices of eggplant that are fried in olive oil until golden then layered with tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, and basil and baked until bubbly. Variations made with breaded meat cutlets, such as veal and chicken parmigiana, have been developed in other countries, usually in areas of Italian immigration. In some recipes the eggplant is breaded and fried. While this adds a whole extra layer of texture, I don't think it's necessary. There are many versions of eggplant parmigiana. I probably like them all. The earthy sweetness of the eggplant and tomato sauce, the gooey mozzarella, and the sharpness of the parmesan all come together to make something delectable. Recipe adapted from Miss Dahl's Voluptuous Delights by Sophie Dahl 2 medium-sized eggplants 1/2 cup olive oil 1 large onion, finely diced 2 teaspoons garlic, minced 800g can of chopped tomatoes 2 tablespoons of tomato paste 3 tablespoons of dry white wine 1 tablespoon soft brown sugar 1 teaspoon dried oregano 1 cup of shredded fresh basil leaves 250g bocconcini or buffalo mozzarella, sliced 1/2 cup of shredded parmesan cheese Salt & Pepper to taste 1/ Slice eggplant into 1cm thick slices. Lay them on a flat surface…