Julie Narula Gulati shares two enticing recipes which blur the borders between cuisines.
When I was younger, I would watch my mother and sisters create different dishes in our kitchen; this ignited my passion for cooking. I started thinking about how flavours from a variety of cuisines could be combined and fused to produce entirely new dishes, all from my own imagination.
My family and I travel a lot to different countries, which allows us to taste exotic menus. Whenever we return, my mother-in-law and I like to attempt to replicate what we experienced abroad for our family, since we all love food.
Being a mother with two young kids, I don’t have much time on my plate, but I love experimenting with healthier baby food options to keep their diets interesting as well as nutritious. Of course, when I cook for my husband or our families, it’s a wonderful feeling to be appreciated for my innovation.
CRUNCHY KRAPHAO SPINACH BALLS
SERVING SIZE: 2-4
Prepare the Thai basil fried rice in advance. You can add sautéed tofu or mushrooms, or chicken for a non-vegetarian option. You can also substitute the Kraphao for Panaeng, or any other fried rice variety of your choice.
2 cups of boiled spinach
3 cloves of garlic
2-3 bird’s eye chillies (optional)
1⁄3 tsp of salt
1 1⁄2 cups of breadcrumbs
2 tbsps of cornflour
1 cup of grated mozzarella cheese
2 cups of cooked Thai basil fried rice
Method for preparing the dish:
- Blend the spinach, garlic, chillies and salt together to make a paste.
- Add 1 cup of breadcrumbs and the cornflour into the mixture. Mix well.
- Combine the mozzarella into this dough and set aside.
- Grease your hands with cooking oil, and roll the fried rice into eight balls of the same size.
- Evenly divide the dough into eight. Pat each segmentto form a layer around the fried rice balls.
- Roll the finished balls in the remainder of the breadcrumbs so that they are evenly coated.
- Deep fry the balls until lightly browned. For a healthier option, preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and bake the fried rice balls until lightly browned.
PENNE PRAWN CURRY
SERVING SIZE: 4
8 large prawns, deveined and with tails intact Salt and pepper to taste 1 cup of chopped white onion
1 tbsp of garlic, pounded
1 tbsp of red bird’s eye chilli paste
1⁄2 tbsp of ginger, pounded
11⁄2 cups of chopped tomatoes
1⁄2 tsp of coriander powder
1⁄4 tsp of red chilli powder
1⁄4 tsp of turmeric powder
1⁄2 tsp of cumin powder
1⁄2 tsp of dry mango powder
2 tbsps of cooking oil
1⁄2 cup of water
1 cup of coconut milk or cooking cream (optional)
2 cups of boiled penne
1⁄4 cup of fresh parsley leaves (for garnish)
Method for the dish:
- Season the prawns with a pinch of salt and pepper, and set aside for at least 30 minutes.
- In a saucepan, add the cooking oil and sauté the onions for 2-3 minutes over medium heat.
- Add the chilli paste,pounded garlic,and ginger. Continue to sauté until the onions turn golden brown.
- Add in the tomatoes and all of the remaining spices.Mix well.
- Stir in the water,and cook for 5 minutes over low heat.
- Add the cooking cream and bring the curry to a boil. Cook until the texture is consistent. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Let the curry cool, and then blend until smooth.
- In a nonstick pan, spray some cooking oil and grill the prawns until fully cooked.
- Place the prawns over the boiled penne on a nice plate.
- 10 Heat up the curry and pour it sizzling hot onto the prawns and pasta.
- Garnish with parsley.