The kitchen is the most dreaded place for any newly wed bride. Especially for young girls who have grown up using the kitchen only for snacking. Been there, done that.
And I actually thought it would be as easy as a google search. But whenever i did, i would be flooded with so many options and varieties of food that would create more confusion. And then I would end up calling my mom, my savior! Lets face it, our mums can give us better recipes than google can. But even those recipes need a little practice and lots of trials to be perfected.
Cheat sheets – something not just meant for exams, but also cooking. From the amount of food that needs to be made per person to the time needed for cooking, a little standard chart could help.
So lets start with the basics!
Perfect cup of tea
The best comfort lies in a good cup of tea or coffee. And we have our own likings to it. But when someone else asks you a cup of tea, you are left wondering how to impress them. Trust me, i have made terrible tea before and tortured some. But finally I mastered good tea making now that all my guests flock over to have a cup. If you love your own cup of tea, give this a skip. Else read on..
My personal favorite tea powder – TAJ MAHAL tea(The dark blue packet not the light blue). Its a coarse tea powder but the flavour is unbeatable. Trust me, I have tried every other brand, but this one tops the list.
To make two cups of tea –
2 cups of milk ( if thick milk, 1 cup milk and 1 cup water)
Allow to boil. Add crushed ginger(1 inch) or cardommon(optional)
Add 2 1/2 tsp of TAJ MAHAL tea powder. Keep on simmer for 3 min for the powder to dissolve or more if you like darker tea.
Add 4 tsp sugar and remove from flame.
Strain and serve hot.
Tip – Add a pinch of cinnamon for that extra taste in your tea.
Your perfect cup of tea is ready!
Rice is the staple food for indian cooking. Our lunch is incomplete without it. The type of white rice used in india varies from state to state. Being a south indian, the common rice we use is called ponni rice. Its basically small white rice grains. In kerala, brown rice is used which is bigger in size and healthier.
To make white rice,
* First decide the amount of rice, the minimum amount of rice per person is half a cup. For 2 persons, take 1 full cup of rice.
* Wash the rice thoroughly in water 2 times and drain it.
* Bring a pot of water (2 or 3 cups) to a boil .
* Add the rice and 1tsp salt and keep on medium flame.
* Note the time and check on it after 25-30 minutes until it is done to your liking.
* Switch off flame and drain.
You can soak the rice for 10 min. If using basmati rice, it is recommended to soak the rice for atleast 30 minutes. Also the time taken for basmati rice to cook is around 10min.
For draining the cooked rice, you can use binder clips to hold the lid in place and allow water to flow through a small gap by tilting it on another vessel. Else you can use a strainer.
If you feel that the cooked rice is sticky after draining, keep the rice vessel on high flame and toss the rice for 1 minute.
If you are using a cooker to cook rice, then measure water 2 cups for 1 cup of rice and allow for 1 whistle only.
Rice Varieties –
- Ghee Rice
- Tomato Rice
- Lemon Rice
- Vegetable Pulao
- Fried Rice
Do you know the difference between chopped, diced, sliced and juliened veges? Its one of the basic concepts which makes a huge difference in your cooking process.
Lets start with ONIONS (basic)-
Sliced onions – Finely sliced lengthwise. Used for Biryani, curries and majority of variety rice.
Chopped onions – Make multiple cuttings lenghtwise and breadthwise. Used for omlettes
Diced onions – Making sqaure shaped pieces Used in some cuisines like chilli chicken.
Tomatoes are another main ingredient used in most of indian cuisines. For curries and salads, they are mostly used in chopped form.
Cutting vegetables depends on your taste and liking. They can be finely chopped or juliened. They are used in chopped form in most of the dishes. And in soups,pastas and chinese cuisines they are in juliened form.
This is one of the most important aspect of cooking almost anything. Proper quantity of the food you choose is optimum for minimum food wastage.
So first it is important to buy these measurements – Cups and Teaspoon/Tablespoon
You can also use the standard steel cup(used in majority of indian household) or the one which comes free with a rice cooker. Whichever works best for you.
Using the standard sizes is recommended and its a one time investment!