Posted on 27. Oct, 2007 by .


Curry Corn Chowder with Roasted Poblanos


* 2 poblano chiles
* 1 pound potatoes, peeled and diced into (1- inch) cubes
* 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
* 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
* 1 medium onion, chopped
* ¼ cup celery, diced
* ½ cup green pepper, diced
* Salt to taste
* 3 cups fresh corn kernels or frozen corn, thawed
* 2 cups vegetable stock or water
* 1 cup cream
* 1 tablespoon curry powder
* 3 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

Pre heat the grill or a broiler. Grill or broil the chilies until the skin begins to blacken, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let steam until the skin loosens, about 10 minutes. Peel the chiles and chop coarsely, Set aside

In a small sauce pan, add the potatoes and enough water to cover and cook until tender. Drain and set aside.

In a large sauce pan, heat the oil, cumin, onion, celery and pepper and sauté until the vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes. Add salt and corn and cook for 3 to 4 minutes longer. Stir in the roasted chiles, potatoes, stock, cream, curry powder and 1 tablespoon of cilantro and simmer until the soup thickens, 20 to 25 minutes.

Serve hot garnished with the remaining cilantro.

Grilled Chicken with Kokum Apple compote


* 2 tablespoons coriander seeds
* 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
* 1 teaspoon cardamom pods
* 1 (1-inch) piece cinnamon stick
* 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
* 1 tablespoon ginger, chopped
* ½ teaspoon ground cloves
* 1 teaspoon cayenne
* 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
* Juice of 1 lemon
* Salt to taste
* 1 pound (4 breasts) trimmed boneless chicken breasts

Place a small frying pan over low heat and dry-roast the coriander, cumin, cardamom and cinnamon until aromatic. Grind the roasted spices to a fine powder using a spice grinder.

Place onion, ginger, cloves, cayenne, oil, lemon juice and salt in a blender or food processor until smooth. Add the roasted spice mixture to the onion paste.

Marinate the chicken with the spice paste. Cover and marinate for 2 to 4 hours.

Preheat the grill to 350 º F. Grill the chicken pieces for 5 minutes on each side on the grill, or until the chicken is tender and cooked.


* 2 tablespoons butter
* 2 granny smith apples, peeled, cored and chopped
* ½ cup apple cider
* 1 teaspoon coriander seeds, toasted and ground
* 1 teaspoon ground cumin, toasted and ground
* 2 tablespoons kokum, seeded and chopped

Cook the butter in small saucepan over high heat until golden brown. Add the apples and cook stirring until caramelized about 5 minutes. Add the apple cider and cook until the liquid had evaporated about 5 to 7 minutes. Mix in the coriander, cumin and kokum and cook for 1 minute. Set aside until ready to use.

Yellow Pear and Cherry Tomato Salad with Cumin

* Serves 4
* 2 tablespoons lemon juice
* 2 tablespoons red onion, minced
* 2 teaspoons honey
* 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
* Salt to taste
* ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
* 2 teaspoons cumin seeds, toasted and coarsely ground
* 2 cup yellow pear tomatoes, halved
* 1 cup red cherry tomatoes, halved
* 1 cup orange cherry tomatoes, halved
* 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped.

In a small bowl combine the lemon juice, red onion, honey, olive oil ,salt, red pepper flakes and cumin. Whisk until well blended.

In a large salad bowl, toss together all the tomatoes. Pour the dressing on top, add the chopped basil and toss gently to mix well. Serve immediately.

Black Tea Cinnamon Truffle

Makes 5 Dozen Truffles

* 1 pound semi sweet chocolate, finely chopped
* 2 cups heavy cream
* 1 cinnamon stick
* ½ cup tea leaves
* 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
* Cocoa powder, for dusting

Place the chopped chocolate in a medium bowl and set aside

Using a small pot, bring the cream and cinnamon to boil. Remove from heat, add the tea and infuse for 5 minutes. Strain the hot cream through a fine sieve over the chocolate. Using the back of the spoon, press the tea leaves to extract as much flavor as possible. Allow the cream to soften the chocolate for 2 minutes. Using a whisk, stir the chocolate mixture slowly until smooth. Add the butter, stirring until mixed. Transfer the chocolate cream mixture into a flat pan and cover with plastic wrap, making sure the plastic wrap touches the entire surface of the mixture. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours until the chocolate is set.

Place the cocoa powder in a shallow plate. Using a teaspoon dipped in hot water, form ½ inch balls of the chocolate mixture. If the mixture gets too soft while working, refrigerate until set. Roll the truffles in cocoa powder and store in an airtight container in a cool place for up to three weeks.

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Posted on 27. Oct, 2007 by .


Truffles – gold in soil

truffle truffle truffles

Truffles have fascinated people for thousands of years. Their attraction is a tantalizing taste and aroma which, once experienced, can never be forgotten. The taste and aroma of commercially collected truffles is so intense that they are used as a flavoring instead of a separate dish. Magical powers and virtues have even been attributed to truffles. They have been collected for at least 3600 years. Growing underground, they are difficult to find and very expensive as a result. Every Spring, truffle hunters in Europe take to the woods, hoping that the sensitive noses of their trained pigs and dogs will lead them to buried treasure. In 1994, black truffles sold for $350 to $500 a pound.

truffle t

The name “truffle” has been borrowed to describe small, fancy chocolate candies, another expensive and delicious food. Real truffles are roundish, brown, and dirty when they come out of the ground. They are the fruit of the truffle organism, like apples are the fruit of an apple tree.

Fresh truffles are difficult to come by, and expensive, especially the Italian white truffle . Fortunately, white truffle oil is available relatively cheaply on the market.

Truffle oil

slicing truffle

You can make your own truffle oil by storing pieces of fresh truffle in clean, sweet, mild tasting oil. The oil is first heated slightley then shaved truffles are added .The more finely chopped the truffle is, the more of its essence it will give up into the oil and the less flavor the pieces themselves will retain. Make sure all liquid is drained off from the truffles before adding them to the oil; reserve the liquid for later use. Any kind of truffle may be used to make truffle oil. Light olive oil and grapeseed oil are good.

Store truffle oil in a cool, dark place away from heat, light and oxygen. Some methods of excluding oxygen include sealing wax or plastic wrap on the surface of the oil as well as nitrogen gas dispensers, sold commercially for wine enthusiasts under the name Private Preserve.

Truffle oil that is kept very cold in your refrigerator will whiten and solidify, but this is not necessarily harmful to the flavor. Truffle oil is tolerant of cold, and can even be frozen, but like fine wine it is less tolerant of temperature fluctuations and may lose quality if it is allowed to solidify and liquefy repeatedly. Remove from cold storage only the amount you intend to immediately use, and leave the rest at temperature.

truffle oil

The best use for truffle oil is summed up in one word — drizzle. It is drizzled over mashed potatoes, slices of fresh bread, risottos, and flat breads, asparagus, bowls of pasta, gourmet salads , thick soups, and mushroom ragouts and sauces. Beyond the drizzle, it is used sparingly to make vinaigrettes for fancy salads or other vegetable dishes. Finally, once you get a handle on the taste, experiment by adding a little truffle oil to some of your favorite dishes. You may well find that the best use for your oil is one of your own creations.

Truffle n egg

Truffles and Fried Egg

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Where is Hari ?

Posted on 10. Oct, 2007 by .




20th- Guest Chef @ Sodexo cafe – Pfizer Madison NJ

27th – Guest Chef @ Sodexo Cafe – Merrill Lynch Down Town NYC


10th – Guest Chef @ Manhattan College NYC

3rd – Guest Chef @ Sodexo Cafe – Bank of America Towers – NYC

10th – Guest Chef @ Sodexo Cafe – World Financial Center Down Town NYC

28th – ACUI show – Chicago


The Asia & India Odyssey
culinary travel director


1st – Kuwait City – Marriott Hotel – Soul & Spice – Restaurant Opening

7th – Varli Indian Food Festival - NYC

12th – IFFLA awards (Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles)


Sept 5th – 12th – 11th Annual World Gourmet Festival


19th – Guest Chef @ Sodexo Cafe – Bapson college , Boston, MA

26th – Diwali festival Guest Chef @ Sodexo Cafe – Wake Forest Medical , Winston-Salem, NC


7th – 10th – Guest Chef & Diwali festival @ Sodexo Cafe – USAA – San Antonio, TX

14th to 15th – New York’s Indian Film Festival, MIACC

15th – Guest Chef @ Sodexo Cafe – Boeringher Ingelheim , Danbury, CT

16th – Guest Chef @ Sodexo Cafe – BMW North America HQ – NJ

17th – Guest Chef @ Sodexo Cafe – Guardian Life – NYC


2th to 30th – Guest Chef aboard Seaborn Odessey


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Easy Chocolate Truffle Recipe and Technique by Hari Nayak

Posted on 23. Aug, 2007 by .


Chocolate ” a gift of Love

make it home made!


10 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup cardamon pods crushed
1/2 cup Dutch process cocoa powder, finely chopped nuts, and/or toasted coconut, for coating truffles
8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine


Place the 10 ounces of chocolate in a medium size glass mixing bowl.Heat the heavy cream and cardamon pods in a small saucepan over medium heat until simmering. Remove from the heat and pour the mixture over the melted chocolate mixture; let stand for 2 minutes. Using a rubber spatula, stir gently, starting in the middle of bowl and working in concentric circles until all chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth and creamy. Gently stir in the rum ( optional ). Pour the mixture into an 8 by 8-inch glass baking dish and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

Using a scoop or spoon, scoop chocolate onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and return to the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Place the cocoa powder, nuts, and/or toasted coconut each in its own pie pan and set aside.

Remove the truffles from the refrigerator and shape into balls by rolling between the palms of your hands. Use powder-free vinyl or latex gloves, if desired.

Dip an ice cream scoop into the chocolate and turn upside down to remove excess chocolate. Place truffles 1 at time into the scoop and roll around until coated. Then place the truffle into the dish with either the cocoa powder, nuts or coconut. Move the truffle around to coat; leave truffle in the coating for 10 to 15 seconds before removing. In the meantime, continue placing the chocolate-coated truffles in the cocoa or other secondary coating. After 10 to 15 seconds, remove the truffle to a parchment lined sheet pan. Repeat until all truffles are coated. Allow to set in a cool dry place for at least 1 hour; or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Truffles are best when served at room temperature.

Sounds easy enough!

Now Watch!

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Cooking with Dragon Fruit a.k.a. Pitahaya, Strawberry Pear

Posted on 18. Aug, 2007 by .


Since the day i saw this fruit in China town in NYC, i was just very curious about this fruit and i am trying & testing different recipes that i can use this fruit in various ethnic cooking & pastry production. The fruit is juicy, with a subtle fruity flavors. Red Pitaya is pleasant to eat and when sliced the fruit is especially attractive.The fruit is popular eaten chilled, out of hand. It is also used to flavor drinks and pastries. Unopened flower buds are cooked and eaten as vegetables.

dragon fruit

The exact origin of this dragon fruit is unknown, but is likely from Southern Mexico through Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador and Costa Rica. It is cultivated around the world in tropical regions. Native to Mexico and Central and South America, these vine-like cacti are also cultivated in Southeast Asian countries such as Vietnam, the Philippines, and Malaysia. They are also found in Taiwan, Israel, and southern China. This fruit only blooms at night; they are large white flowers that are often called Moon flower or Queen of the Night.

dragon fruit dragon fruit

I have found this interesting site for all different varieties of this fruit

Watch this !

Here is a chutney recipe i tried which is pretty interesting:

Exoctic fruit chutney by Hari Nayak

6 c prepared dragon fruit (peel and chop)
1½ c cider vinegar
1½ c granulated sugar
¾ c dark brown sugar
1½ c chopped onion
½ c raisins
3 tart apples, peeled, cored and chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp ginger root, finely minced
1½ tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp mustard seed
½ tsp each: cayenne, ground cloves and allspice
¼ tsp each: ground pepper and salt

Combine dragon fruit, vinegar, sugars, onion, raisins, apples, garlic, ginger root, cinnamon, mustard seed, cayenne pepper, cloves, allspice, pepper and salt in a large stainless steel or enamel saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly to prevent scorching. Boil gently, stirring occasionally, 20 to 25 minutes or until mixture is thick.

A good recipe for canning & preserving.

Dragon Shrimp Salad by Hari Nayak

1/2 pound dragon fruit, sliced
1/2 pound (21-30) size shrimp, shelled, deveined and cooked with tails intact
1/2 cup each finely julienned radish and pomegranate
1/2 head lettuce
lemon ginger dressing

Arrange all ingredients in shallow lettuce-lined salad bowl. Serve with lemon ginger dressing. Makes 3 to 4 servings.

Lemon ginger dressing: Combine 2 tablespoons each oil, vinegar and lemon juice. 1 tablespoon honey, 1 teaspoon grated ginger, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.
Mix well.

Makes about 1/3 cup.

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