Rice is one of those go to dishes whenever one is in a hurry to prepare a meal. I think it is a staple in most households. The thing I like most about rice is that it’s very versatile and you can cook it in almost any way imaginable.
To avoid cooking it in the same boring steamed manner, there are other easy methods, you can add a teaspoon of turmeric powder and voila, a whole different look and taste. Recently, I have come to love coconut rice, the rich taste of coconut in the rice is just perfect.
For this simple dish, you’ll need;
1 cup rice – chaff removed and thoroughly washed
2 cups warm water /1 cup water 1 cup coconut milk
A sachet of coconut cream powder – I used four tablespoons of the powder
Salt to taste
You can choose to use the coconut milk which is the preferred method since the coconut taste is far richer than using the coconut cream powder. Seeing that I wanted to save my coconut milk for another recipe I used the powder.
Mix one cup of warm water with the coconut cream powder. Stir to get rid of any lumps formed.
In a sufuria add the ‘coconut milk’, the other cup of water and the rice.
I cook my rice a bit differently from others and every time the grains come out one by one. I may boast that it may be my method of cooking but I think a huge part is because of the type of rice I use. Anyway, crank up the heat. Yeah, that’s my secret. Leaving the sufuria uncovered, bring the mixture to a rapid boil.
Once boiled, reduce the heat then cover the sufuria and let the rice simmer until the all evaporates.
I have definitely missed blogging and I’m sure some of you were wondering where I had disappeared to, well worry no more, I’m back. I have been busy with school and end of semester exams, so my cooking has been on the minimum. For the times I cook, I’m always in a rush so I end up not taking photos. As per the title this post is long over due. Last month my foodie pen pal was a sweet lady by the name, Swabra.
She sent over a lovely package full of interesting goodies. She also wrote a letter and attached some recipes, some I’ve tried others I’m yet to.
Cardamon seeds, Tamarind (ukwaju), coconut milk, beef curry mix, rice flour, and pretzel mix. She also sent over some penne from Cafe Deli along Moi Avenue.
I used the curry mix for some beef and served with ugali. It was very delicious. I think the next time I’m at the supermarket I’ll buy a sachet or two.
The rice flour and the coconut milk are for preparing rice porridge, yeah you read right. I am yet to try the recipe out. I think I’ll prepare this for breakfast this coming Wednesday.
The tamarinds, are for making juice or dips for bhajias. I already made the dip for some bhajias I had cooked. Goodness, it was delicious. I’ll be posting her recipe soon.
As for the pretzel/jilebi mix, it’s on my to do list.
For sure, foodie pen pals has exposed me to very new things that I would not normally buy and for that I’m grateful. I love discovering new dishes and thanks Swabra for the new recipes.
For more information about the foodie pen pal programme and how you can participate, visit here.
I had missed eating potatoes and since I didn’t have the patience to bake the potatoes I decided to mash them. Making mashed potatoes is pretty simple, since you just boil the potatoes till they are completely cooked then you mash them like crazy. Of course there are a few spice addition here and there which I’ll share in a bit.
Sometime back my colleagues and I decided to do a lunch treat at a nearby food court. Being adventurous with the food selection I ordered some coconut chicken. Boy, wasn’t I disappointed, it was more like stewed chicken with lots of tomatoes and bell peppers and not even a hint of coconut, anyway since I had some boneless chicken breasts in the fridge I thought of making actual coconut chicken. After checking some online recipes I settled on trying it out my own way.
So for the potatoes;
Peel and wash the potatoes thoroughly. Cut them in halves. In a sufuria add the potatoes, salt and water to almost cover all the potatoes. In case you have fresh rosemary you can add about two sprigs. I also added some cinnamon bark.
Now for the chicken;
First, cut the chicken into bite size pieces. Add one tablespoon of oil in a skillet, then brown the chicken for about 3 to 5 minutes.
Remove from the pan then set aside.
In the same skillet heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil then add the onions, garlic and ginger.
Since I was doing this for the first time, I didn’t want to use a lot of spices lest I miss the coconut taste.
So I settled for some cardamon pods, cumin seeds, coriander powder, curry powder and good old black pepper.
Stir in the spice mixture.
Add 1 cup coconut milk and let it simmer with the spices for about 3 minutes.
Finally I added the chicken. (forgot to take pics 😦 )
Let the chicken cook for about 25 minutes or until the sauce is thick.
Back to the potatoes. Once fully cooked, drain any excess water, remove the cinnamon bark, then mash like crazy.
Mashed potatoes are like a blank canvas you can spice them up with almost anything. From chopped coriander or parsley to butter and milk. Adding some chopped spring onions or grating over some cheese.
Since I was out of parsley, I added 1 tablespoon of basil leaves, 2 tablespoons of margarine and about 1/4 cup of milk. The milk helps in making the mashed potatoes fluffy.
Dinner is served:
Mashed potatoes, coconut chicken and some fried cabbage and carrots.
Not forgetting some kachumbari on the side.
Coconut – ty. The mashed potatoes were delicious and the basil added a nice touch. I’ll definitely be making this recipe again, of course with some few adjustments like more coconut flavour.