A little over a year ago, I shared my very first recipe with you. I’d been obsessively tasting different versions of Caesar Salad at restaurants in Mumbai and came up with my own little ‘quickie’ version, sans the calorie-laden dressing. As if to prove just how quickly the salad came together, I’d even snapped the pictures on my phone. And that was the beginning of a new obsession. This space, my own little haven on the internet, where I share bits of my life and creations from my kitchen with you, became my new obsession. Never again did I put up pictures taken with my phone. Not that there’s anything wrong with phone pictures, but I decided to use this space to creatively propel myself. Taking better pictures, experimenting more in the kitchen, writing better posts… that’s pretty much what the last year has been about. I celebrated my blog-a-versary in solitude, taking stock of all the new things I’ve been working on and I’m thrilled to tell you that I made my first TV appearance earlier this week and it was awesome!!
My friend Amber put together this collage from my appearance on ‘Food ka Mood’ that aired on Khaana Khazana. I baked a Strawberry Cake (recipe here) and wore eye shadow. Hmm… wearing make-up in the kitchen… I’m saying YES to that! I’ve also been working with a really cool and talented team to bring you videos of my recipes and the first one is of a really easy, dairy-free, Chocolate Pudding. I’m nervous, excited and can’t wait to hear what you think! There’ll be new video recipes up every Tuesday, so be sure to hit the ‘SUBSCRIBE’ button on this link to stay updated!
I keep coming back to the recipe that started it all, this recipe for Chicken Caesar Salad. A year down the road, I have a slightly different version of Caesar Salad for you.
There are no dairy products and the iceberg lettuce is replaced by the internet’s favourite superfood- Kale! In the last year, kale has become relatively easier to find in Mumbai. My vegetable vendor regularly stocks the curly-leaf variety which he tells me is in demand way more that the flat-leaf lacinato kale. Great, I’m just going to work with the peppery-flavoured, curly-leafed kale! I’ve left out the chicken and topped the salad with strips of breaded, pan fried tofu. Start out by setting up a dredging station (totally sounds like we’re in the army), dredge the tofu in soy sauce, then toss to coat with a herb-y breadcrumb mixture and off it goes into a hot pan to get cooked until it’s crisped on both sides.
A roasted head of garlic is the flavour-booster in the dressing. An entire head of garlic, that’s about 10 to 15 cloves, but if you’re afraid of being left with garlic-breath, worry not, roasting the garlic enhances the sweetness of the garlic and won’t leave you with smelly breath. Peel the outer, husky layers of the head of garlic, but not too much, you don’t want the individual cloves falling out. Use a sharp knife to chop off the top ¼ -inch of the head of garlic so that the cloves are slightly exposed. Use a large piece of aluminium foil and brush it with olive oil. Wrap and seal the head of garlic in the foil and roast in a pre-heated oven of about 200 degrees Celsius for about 30 minutes or until the cloves are soft to the touch. Unwrap the garlic and allow it to cool until it is cool enough to handle. Then just squeeze the individual cloves of garlic out of their skins into the dressing while it’s being made. Here’s the rest of the recipe:
Serves 3 to 4.