Monday, March 28, 2011

Chilli Soy Chunks with Peanuts

Soy Chunks is a common ingredient in my pantry and it can be used for pulaos, curries, etc. and serves as a great meat substitute. Most of the times, soy ingredients blend well with asian flavors. So, I decided to make a chilli soy chunks with peanuts (almost similar to Kung Pao Tofu). The soy chunks absorb the flavors from the spicy sauce which makes this dish much more tasteful. As a variation, you can replace the soy chunks with medium firm tofu (shallow fried).


1 1/2 cups dry soy chunks
1 medium green bell pepper, diced
1 small red onion, diced
3-4 green chillies, finely chopped
5-6 dry red chillies
2 tbsp oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 inch grated ginger
1/4 cup dry roasted peanuts
Salt, to taste (optional)
1/4 cup scallions/green onions, finely chopped

For the sauce:

4 tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
4 tbsp tomato sauce
1 1/2 tbsp red chilli paste


In a small bowl, add soy sauce, tomato sauce, red chilli paste and whisk together. Set aside.

Cook the soy chunks according to directions in the package. Rinse them in cold water and squeeze out the excess water from the chunks.

In a pan, heat oil, add red chillies and fry until it turns slightly dark on both sides. Add onions, bell pepper, green chillies, grated ginger and minced garlic. Sauté until the onions are translucent and bell peppers are slightly cooked.

Add the soy chunks and toss them with the onions and bell peppers. Cook for 6-8 minutes until the soy chunks blend well with the other ingredients.

Add the prepared sauce along with 1/4 cup water to the soy chunks and mix well until all the ingredients are coated well with the sauce. Cook for about 8-10 minutes or until the chunks absorb all the flavors. If you want it more saucy, add 1/2- 1 cup water and 1 tsp cornflour (mixed with little water). Cook for few minutes until the sauce becomes slightly thick.

Add roasted peanuts and toss well with the soy chunks. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Garnish with green onions and serve hot with noodles or rice.

Makes 3 servings.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cookies are one of the easiest sweet treats to bake. I was looking for an eggless oatmeal cookie recipe and came across quite a few. By making slight modifications, I ended up with a simple and chewy oatmeal cookie that was hard to resist. You can use these cookies to make whoopie pies using a hazelnut spread (like Nutella) or even use light whipped cream (you can freeze them for 10-15 minutes until they set) sandwiched between two cookies.


1/2 cup (or 1 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 cup boiling water
1 cup quick oats
1/3 cup raisins
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup chopped walnuts


In a mixing bowl, add melted butter (room temperature) , brown sugar and vanilla extract. Whisk until all the ingredients turn smooth and fluffy.

Add the sifted flour, salt, baking soda mixed with boiling water and mix all the ingredients.

Stir in the oats, raisins, semi-sweet chocolate chips and walnuts (the cookie batter might seem slightly wet and sticky, thats ok).

Preheat the oven to 350° F.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and drop the cookie dough using a tablespoon (or teaspoon for smaller cookies) and slightly flatten it. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven and cool for 5-10 minutes. Serve warm and chewy oatmeal cookies.

Makes 20 medium sized cookies.