Saturday, June 16, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cookies

One of the best things about cooking is when people praise you and request you to make things for them. That's how this one got started. Meera wanted to eat chocolate chip cookies and I told her we'll bake them at home. Earlier we had tried some chocolate chip cookies that our friend, Seema made. They were pretty darn good so that was definitely motivating. So after hunting for the right version and looking at several different versions of the recipe, I decided to pick this one. And of course, as I like to make modifications to original recipes, I couldn't help but modify this one too. I've put the text of original recipe at the bottom for reference.

My modified version:


2 oz butter, softened
½ cup brown sugar
2 large tbsp plain Greek yogurt
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp hot water
¼ tsp salt

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup chocolate chips
1 tbsp walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Cream the butter and brown sugar together. Add yogurt one tablespoon at a time and vanilla. Dissolve baking soda and salt in hot water and add to the mixture. Add in flour, chocolate chips and nuts. Drop large tbsp full of cookie dough on baking sheet covered pan.

Bake for 20-25 mins at 350 degrees F or until golden brown.


    1 cup butter, softened
    1 cup white sugar
    1 cup packed brown sugar
    2 eggs
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    3 cups all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    2 teaspoons hot water
    ½ teaspoon salt
    2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
    1 cup chopped walnuts


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Cream together the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Dissolve baking soda in hot water. Add to batter along with salt. Stir in flour, chocolate chips, and nuts. Drop by large spoonfuls onto ungreased pans.

Bake for about 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until edges are nicely browned.

Original recipe:

Potato & Broccoli Soup

This soup has been a big hit over winter season. I made this at least 3-4 times during this past winter. The soup is quite filling and you can eat it with bread/toast for lunch or dinner.

Soup ingredients:

3 small potatoes, diced
1 small onion, diced
diced broccoli same amount as diced potatoes

4-6 tbsp oil
salt to taste
1½ tsp red pepper
1½ tsp black pepper
1½ to 2 oz blue cheese

Vegetable broth ingredients:

3-4 leaves cabbage
1 small potato
1 small or ½ big onion (same as potato)
1 piece of dudhi/lauki (same as potato)
4 cups of water


Boil all the vegetable broth ingredients in pressure cooker for 5-6 whistles. Once done, let it cool bit and blend it well in blender and set aside.

Put oil in large pan on medium-high heat.
Add potatoes and onions and sauté for 5 minutes stirring non-stop.
Add broccoli and sauté for another 3 minutes stirring non-stop.

Add in vegetable broth and cheese and stir well. Bring it to boil. Then turn the heat to low and let the soup simmer for 25 minutes.

Afterwards, let is cool just a bit and run all of it through blender once again. Put the blended soup on stove to simmer again and add both peppers and salt to taste. Serve hot!

Note: I'm trying to find the source of the original recipe but am not able to find it. Will share it as soon as I'm able.

Bread dipping sauce with sun-dried tomatoes

Ever since the first time Meera tried this bread dripping sauce at Pasta Primavera she has been crazy about it. In the past I experimented once to try to make something similar and gave up as I couldn't find anything that had similar ingredients that I thought the sauce had. So today when she said we'll stop by to the cafe to pick up a tub of sauce, I told her I'll try to make it at home for her and if she doesn't like it, then we can go pick it up at the restaurant. I googled some recipes and was disappointed to find more than 90% of the recipes with cream cheese or something similar. I almost gave up and decided to look once more and voila! I found it!! I just made two batches of it as I had to decide how much salt to add. Eventually ended up mixing the two batches because first one had a little bit of more salt in it. Adding the two made it so much better and in less than 10 mins, half of the bowl is already empty. ;)

Here's what I used:


2-3 tbsp julienne sun-dried tomatoes (you can get the whole or paste also)

½ cup of olive oil
¼ tsp dried rosemary leaves
¼ tsp dried basil leaves
¼ tsp dried thyme (I didn't have this so skipped it)
salt to taste
¼ tsp black pepper


Added sun-dried tomatoes to olive oil. Mix the dry spices and add them to the olive oil mix. Run it through blender to mix it. Serve right away or after 4-5 hours. I added little extra olive oil so that it can be stored for a day or so, until it's all gone! ;)

Original recipe: