Sunday, April 9, 2017

A picnic and a birthday

I had this in my drafts and happened to read it today. It isn't half bad and it brought back pleasant memories so I thought I would publish.
Gubs turned 12 yesterday. Hard to believe that the baby of the family is growing up. Gubba planned his birthday very elaborately. He wanted a picnic with his cousins and aunt and uncle.
The menu was
Caprese salad
Pita chips with  Hummus, Mutabal, red pepper and cashew dip and tahini sauce
Rice paper rolls with peanut sauce
Pasta salad

The salad was assembled onsite with tiny Campari tomatoes and marinated fresh mozzarella.

The hummus and mutabal were made from scratch.

The chick peas were soaked and cooked then blended with cumin seeds, ground sesame seeds, garlic,lime juice and salt. Scoop into a shallow bowl; dot with za'attar and aleppo pepper, top with olive oil.

For the Mutabal, roast an eggplant over a gas flame. Char all over. Put in a bowl and cover for 15 mins. Peel off the charred flesh. Start with sesame seeds and half a clove of garlic in the blender. Blend well and lime juice. Add the eggplant and pulse. Serve dirzzled with Olive oil.
The red pepper dip was made with a jar of roasted red peppers, a smidge of garlic, juice of a lime, 1/4 cup of roasted cashews, Aleppo pepper and a dash of balsamic vinegar. Pulse ingredients in a food processor and adjust to taste. Top with Olive oil.

Pasta salad was made with a whole bunch of marinated ingredients: Canned artichoke hearts rinsed and drained. Marinated mushrooms, rinsed and drained. Roasted red and yellow pepppers; drained and some green peas. Dressing was Katy's strawberry vinegar, olive oil, pepper and kashmiri lal mirch.

For the peanut sauce - Zest and juice of a lime, finely minced ginger and garlic,2 tbsps of hoisin sauce, 3 glugs of soy sauce, sambal olek, peanut butter. Add all ingredients upto peanut butter into a 12 oz glass jar and mix. Then add about 2 tbsps peanut butter and microwave for 45 seconds. stir to blend. Taste, add more peanut butter, water, sugar, salt to balance flavors.
For rice paper rolls:
Marinated tofu - Microwave 2 blocks of tofu. Drain the water, Slice horizontally in half and put on the grill. Dab sambal Olek and a little oil and flip when the first side is done. Repeat on other side.

Rice paper rolls made with, julienend carrots, cukes, lettuce, marinated tofu, cooked rice noodles, cilantro and mint.
Technique. Keep a big bowl of water ready that your rice paper will fit into. Dip the rice paper into it and lay it on a cutting board. Immediately begin assembling. Start with lettuce. Herbs, tofu, noodles, carrot and cucumbers in that order. Place on wrap on end near you. Start rolling. Wrap each roll in saran wrap to prevent sticking.
The food was eaten, games were played and a fruit tart with summer berries and a light custard filling was cut and wishes were made.

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