Saturday, September 24, 2016

Chicken pizza with olives and pepper

Last night I’d a craving for potato fries. No, it was not only fries but something else along with it. How about a little sin on weekend! Eat everything, but moderately is the secret to happiness is what I believe in, that too on weekend you definitely have an excuse.

I wanted a pizza- cheesy, with chicken olive toppings. A quick search through the available ingredients confirmed that I can manage to make pizza for myself at the comfort of my kitchen. I wouldn’t claim that it is a perfect pizza, but I can assure you will be surprised on how much you love to relish your efforts. Potato fries made from scratch turned out little bit soggy, so the recipe will be coming once I perfect it until then enjoy Pizza!

When you prepare pizza from scratch at home the good thing is you always have the control on what’s going in it. But it is absolutely fine to go for store bought pizza base while you are in hurry as dough rising takes 45 minutes to 1 hour to double in its size.

Yummy, aromatic, cheesy Chicken Pizza has green bell pepper, tomato and olive toppings. You can substitute chicken with mushrooms, jalapeno peppers, red bell pepper or sundried tomatoes or anything of your choice. Paprika is the only ingredient going in for seasoning of my chicken pizza, you can substitute with dried oregano, basil, thyme, rosemary. 


For pizza base

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup warm water
1 sachet of instant rising yeast (1 teaspoon)
 2-3 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp sugar
1 ½ tsp salt

 For Pizza

4-5 tbsp pizza sauce
½ cup mozzarella cheese
1 tsp paprika powder
1 small green bell pepper, sliced
1 tomato, sliced
½ chicken breast, cut into strips
Olives, sliced


Step 1: Take a mixing bowl, add flour, salt and mix. Make a well in the center and pour water, add yeast, sugar and oil, let stand for 2-3 minutes. Knead the dough until it comes together, dough is sticky at this stage. Brush with oil and cover with damp kitchen towel, allow it to rise for 45 minutes or until it doubles in size. Use dough hook to knead if you are using stand mixer.

Step 2: Punch the dough back and bring it on to the floured surface, knead for a couple of minutes.

Step 3: Spread over the dough gently onto the pizza baking pan using your fingers. Oil your fingers if necessary.

Step 4: Saute chicken with 2 pinches salt, few drops oil, and pinch of black pepper powder in sauce pan for a minute.

Step 5: Spread over pizza sauce leaving edges, be generous. Spread mozzarella cheese. Top it with chicken, olives, bell pepper, and tomato. Sprinkle paprika.

Step 6:  Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and bake for 15 minutes or until crust turn to golden brown. Remove the pan and check for doneness, slice and enjoy!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016


CHAKLI- Deep fried Indian savory snack. 

It is on this auspicious day of Gowri Habba(festival) and Ganesha Chaturthy when family members get together and is a celebration all over India. Bringing home the sacred idols, welcoming it with aarathi, elaborate decorations, and a never ending cooking of variety of food are all the signs of festive vibes. What a joy to treat yourself with variety of food that is not only tasty, but loaded with nutrition and over loaded with love.

These festivals have rich and subtle meaning to convey, and the values are passed on from one generation to the next. Though not able to take it to that level of authentic worshipping like what my parents and grandparents do, we are definite incarnate of them all, which enables to follow the path they laid for us. Staying miles away from home country doesn’t mean to give up values incarnated in us from ages, but made the celebration simple and elegant.

Coming to the recipe, this yummy, crunchy savory snack is not only restricted to festivities. It can be served as tea time snack or something to munch on while watching your favorite movie.  Chakli mould is absolutely necessary for making this snack, without which it is not possible to shape the chakli (Picture attached below for better understanding). But smile, you can still make roundels with hole in the centre (kodubale) and follow the same procedure and then enjoy. The secret key for perfect chakli is to use roasted chana powder don’t substitute with gram flour.


2 cups rice flour
½ cup roasted chana powder (kadale)
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 ½ tsp chili powder
2 tsp sesame seeds (optional)
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying


Step 1: Make nice powder of roasted chana using mixer/food processor, set aside. Heat a frying pan, add cumin, sesame, quick stir. Add rice and chana flour and roast it in medium low for 4 to 5 minutes or until aromatic.

Step 2: Mean while boil water in another pan. Transfer the roasted flour to large mixing bowl, add salt and chili powder, mix thoroughly. Add 1 ½ cups boiling water and mix with ladle, and allow it to cool enough to work with bare hands.

Step 3: Knead well to form firm dough, like chapathy dough. Add warm water if required, cover and let it rest for 5 minutes. Divide it into 4 equal parts, knead to give a shape that fits the mold. Heat oil in a wok for deep frying. Fill the mold and start pressing on to butter paper to give them spiral shape as shown below.

Step 4:  Check the oil by dropping a small piece, it should rise to the top. Now the oil is ready to fry, keep it in medium-medium and carefully drop the pressed chaklis one by one. Flip over after a minute and fry the other side until crisp and golden brown, it takes 3 to 4 minutes.

Step 5: Transfer them on to paper towel to drain excess oil. Repeat the same for remaining batches and after it is completely cooled store them in air tight container jar.

Chakli Mould

Don’t over fry it burns the chaklis.

Bring water to rolling boil.