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Monday, 22 February 2010

Who is Coming over for Dinner?

When I can’t think what to cook or too lazy to cook, I opt for Chinese. Why? Because it is the most tastiest and nutritious food that I can think of and it takes me just fifteen minutes to prepare it. My fridge is always stocked with fresh and canned vegetables, lotsa sauces and some dried mushrooms too. Initially, during my trips abroad, I would pick up too much food stuff from the supermarkets, most of packet would rot, exceeding their expiry dates, and there were some soup and sauces packets, bought blindly, would lie unopened for years, but now I am glad that we get everything here in Mumbai and I can do just weekly shopping in small quantities.

There is a small store close by, which stocks all the exotic foods. This week I picked up firm tofu (there were other types too like silky tofu and soft tofu, but thats for later), some fresh mushrooms, and Japanese Soba noodles (On the packet of this soba noodles it says that it is a traditional style buckwheat and wheat flour noodles with a nutty taste, I was buying it for first time. One packet only, see, economical? yeah?))

Now this tofu is really very tricky. Tofu is actually the Chinese cousin/version of cottage cheese (Italian) or Paneer (Indian). The method of making it is also same except that it is made from soya milk. Get it? But it is rich cousin, mind you and little ‘light’ to eat, melts in the mouth, a great source of high-quality protein, rich in B-vitamins, iron and an excellent source of calcium. The best way to use the firm tofu is to wash it with water, squeeze it out and then marinate it before using. Tofu acts like a sponge and it sucks in the juices of marinated ingredients. Since I am going to use it in Chinese, I have marinated in garlic, ginger and vegetable stock cubes. Okay, I have stored in my fridge, so for next two days I must eat Chinese if I have to finish it in two days. Of course, I will add in soup once and another time I will make salad, can’t have same stuff every day. Isn’t it?

But just now, what I had was quite tasty. It looked dull because I didn’t add colorful veggies like reds and greens (my friends always adds red and green peppers, but its okay if I don’t add when I am making only for self) but it was tasty.

Its so simple to make. why do my friends make such a fuss while cooking? So much drama over nothing!!

In the oil, I added crushed garlic and then I just stir fried shallots, mushrooms, bean sprouts green chilly and corn. Then added these boiled Soba noodles and tofu. Next added Teriyaki sauce, soya sauce, sesame oil and chilly sauce.and Voila!

Wait, let me take one more spoonful. chomp! chomp! burp!

And yeah, I made dip too. I just added garlic, ginger, salt, wasabi, dried herbs into curd. Mixed it and hung it for three hours, squeezing out the water. Then added olive oil to give a glossy look.

Yummy. When you come to visit me, I shall make for you too.

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