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Nothing beats freshly baked bread

Faith Faith

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I love fresh bread and nothing beats freshly baked bread. The smell is what gets me every single time.

Over the years I’ve certainly baked my share of breads and while I may have some favorites, in general I love all bread. I’m what they call equal opportunity when it comes to fresh bread. I’ve certainly baked my share of bread rolls and flatbreads, but sometimes I just love a good old naan bread to dip in some good homemade hummus or butter chicken.

NAAN BREAD

INGREDIENTS
*2 teaspoons active yeast
*1 tsp sugar
*1/2 cup water lukewarm
*1/4 cup vegetable oil
*1 egg large
*1/4 cup yogurt plain
*2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
*1/2 tsp salt
*12 tsp olive oil
*4 Tablespoons butter melted
*2 Tablespoons parsley chopped

METHOD
Heat the oven to 200 F degrees.
In a medium bowl, combine the yeast, sugar and water. Lightly whisk it all together, and then let it sit for about 5 to 10 minutes or until the yeast dissolves and starts to foam. To the same bowl, add the oil, yogurt and egg, and whisk well. Set aside.

To the bowl of your mixer, combine the flour with the salt. Add the yeast mixture and mix for a couple minutes, until the dough comes clean from the sides of the bowl. If the dough is too wet, add a bit more flour, starting with a tablespoon at a time. The dough should be nice and soft but not sticky. Place the dough in an oiled bowl and cover it with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap.

Turn OFF your oven, place the bowl inside and allow to rise for about 30 minutes to 1 hour or until doubled in size. I use this trick all the time to speed up the rising time. Mine only took about 40 minutes, so the time depends on your yeast and your environment. After it rises, cut the dough into 12 equal pieces and shape each piece into a small ball. Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat and add about 1 tsp of olive oil.

Roll out one ball at a time until it’s about 1/3 inch thick and about 5 inches in diameter. Add the piece of rolled dough to the hot skillet and cook for about 1 minute, the skillet should be very hot, so you’ll see bubbles forming as you cook the dough on the first side. Flip the dough and cook the other side until the bottom is golden. Repeat with remaining dough until all of the pieces are cooked. Keep the naan covered in a towel so that it doesn’t dry out. When all of them are cooked, brush each one with the melted butter and garnish with some parsley.

CHEF’S TIP
Add cheddar cheese to the dough for a classy recipe. PS – Like my Facebook page Chef Faith for more recipes and culinary videos.

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COOKING METHODS AND TECHNIQUES

Faith Faith

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When you are staring at a cut of meat at a grocery store and you are wondering how you’re going to cook so it tastes beautiful, what’s going through your head? Is it a blank stare?

Do you know which method to apply to, say, beef short ribs? What about those cheap cuts of meat you are always tempted into buying and are subsequently disappointed by? The point is that we must know how to apply the cooking methods if we are to put that knowledge to any use.

You don’t know the feeling of control and power you have when you can close your eyes, pick up a piece of meat and know exactly how to cook it. Not only that, but you start saving some real cash too. You don’t have to buy a filet mignon to get a tender flavorful steak. All it takes is understanding how to apply the cooking methods! A true chef can make the cheapest cut of meat taste spectacular.

INGREDIENTS
*2x300g beef steak
*2 tablespoons salted butter
*Salt and pepper
*For the sauce
*200g button mushroom, quartered
*One garlic clove, lightly crushed
*One sprig
*150ml dry sherry
*One tablespoon sherry or balsamic vinegar
*150ml beef stock or brown chicken stock (could be made with a good bouillon powder)
*2 tablespoons double cream yoghurt
*One tablespoon grain mustard
*2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
*3 tablespoons olive oil

METHOD
Season the steak with salt and pepper. Melt the butter and fry steak for 4- 5 minutes on both sides or until golden brown
Heat the oil in a large pan and fry the mushrooms with the garlic and thyme, stirring until softened.
Pour in 100ml sherry and cook until reduced to a glaze, about 3 minutes. Add the vinegar and cook for a few seconds more. Mix in the remaining sherry and the stock, bring to the boil and simmer for 3 minutes.
Remove the garlic and thyme, then mix in the crème fraiche and mustard. Pour in any juices from the steak, then add the parsley.
Serve steak with mushroom sauce.
CHEF’S TIP
*Can also serve steak with herb mayonnaise, pepper sauce as well as cheese sauce.
Note… these are two servings.

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Morning Glory

Faith Faith

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Quick Masala French Toast is a perfect fusion recipe, which you can make for your breakfast with no time. It is a perfect combination of toast, eggs and vegetables, which is not only healthy but also very delicious to eat.

Serve Quick Masala French Toast on its own with a cup of hot Espresso Coffee or Masala Tea for a filling scrumptious breakfast.

EGG TOAST

INGREDIENTS
*3 Bread slices
*Four Whole Eggs
*Cooking oil, or butter as required
*2 tablespoons Milk
*1 tablespoon red chilli flakes
*Salt, as per your taste
*3 sprig coriander (Dhania) leaves, finely chopped
*1/4 tablespoon Black pepper powder
*1 Onion, finely chopped
*2 to 3 Green Chillies, finely chopped

METHOD
To begin making the Quick Masala French Toast recipe, beat the eggs in a mixing bowl.
Add milk, beat it again and make sure that it is mixed properly. Add chilli flakes, salt and black pepper.
Once it is done, heat oil in a wide pan. Take a bread slice, dip it in the egg mixture and put it on the pan.
Spread some onion, green chilies and coriander on the top of bread and pour some egg mixture on it again.
Turn the bread and let the other side also cooked properly. Once it turns light brown in colour, take it out of the stove and it is ready to be served.

CHEF’S TIP
Chop a wide variety of fruits and vegetables and coat together with the eggs before preparation. Best served with a hot beverage.

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