Indian cuisine dates back over 5000 years. In a true sense, the cuisine is an amalgamation of the cultures, traditions and influences of different ethnic communities absorbed and imbibed over the centuries. 

If you look up the definition of curry, you will understand that it is a dish of meat, vegetables, etc., cooked in an Indian-style sauce of hot-tasting spices and typically served with rice. This is of course a much generalized definition which does not reflect the diversity that is Indian cuisine.

Bhuna technique originated in Bengal. The first wave of immigration was of the Hakka Chinese in late 18th century, who came to work on a sugar plantation. The Chinese stir fry technique was quickly adopted and bhuna dishes were favoured. Bhuna which simply means to fry the flavour base or masala really well till it starts to caramelize and give out oil along the sides.

Serve this with pita bread or Nan along with a salad or vegetables for a weeknight dinner.

Bhuna Murg


600g boneless, skinless chicken thigh fillets, cut in half or third

Juice of ½ a lime

2 tablespoons ghee, divided

1 tablespoon coriander powder

½ teaspoon turmeric powder



On cold wintry nights, if you are yearning for a hearty, spicy and warming casserole that is vegetarian, then this one is for you. You can serve over corn chips and make vegetarian nachos or other optional toppings are pickled jalapenos, crème fraiche, sour cream, coriander leaves, avocado or guacamole and hot sauce. The dish is relatively easy to make and using tinned beans halves the cooking time.

I used a combination of borlotti beans, red kidney beans and black beans. Any combination of dark coloured beans would work well.

Chile con Verduras


100g onions, finely diced

2-3 sticks celery, finely diced

200g carrots diced into a small cube

200g orange kumara or sweet potato, peeled and diced into a small cube

200g mushrooms, sliced or quartered



Who doesn’t love food that is nutritionally balanced, screams fine dining without the pretence or expense, easily prepared at home with readily available ingredients?

This soup is the answer as it is packed with flavour and deliciousness. It is rich and robust without using cream and I know it is going to be this season’s favourite.

Cook’s notes: If you want to retain the green colour of broccoli, use hot stock and leave the soup uncovered if not serving immediately.

Broccoli soup with poached egg


4 eggs

1 large head of broccoli, florets and stalk separated

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

4-5 spring onions, trimmed and roughly chopped into 2 cm pieces

5-6 cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped

1l hot, vegetable stock

75g leftover cooked rice



Cavalo nero has several other names. Lacinato kale in Italian, or black cabbage, Tuscan kale, Italian kale or dinosaur kale. Whatever the name, it is rich in iron, Vitamin K, A and C and like its other cousins, has more calcium than milk.

Cavalo nero

The sauce is fairly simple and quick to make, using only a few ingredients. I used parsley pesto but basil pesto should work. Also the cavalo nero is cooked well for 20 or so minutes, as recommended by Italian chefs. You can use casarecce or strozzapretti shaped pasta.

Pasta with cavalo nero and chick pea sauce


60g butter

3-4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

½ to 1 teaspoon chilli flakes

1 tablespoon parsley pesto



This cake is from Marie Pierre Moine’s “Recipes for a Perfect Sunday Lunch”. My copy is almost 30 years old and I still refer to it because it has some treasures like this one! It is based on the pound cake principle so the sugar, flour, butter, and eggs are an equal measure of 115g each! Flavoured with orange juice and Cointreau, this is an easy and beautiful sponge to whip up for a special afternoon tea. It is quick, so do try – you will love it.

Orange cake

This is a smallish cake and best eaten on the day it is baked. It does not keep very well.


115g caster sugar

115g soft unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing

2 large eggs

115g self-rising flour

2 tablespoons orange juice and 2 teaspoons grated zest from the orange



These quesadillas are great at breakfast, lunch or brunch. They are so satisfying and I bet it will become a favourite for you as well. These are made with wheat flour tortillas and as a guide, it is one egg per one tortilla. These are best eaten straight out of the pan, so the maker gets to eat last!

My son made these for me for lunch a few months back and I just loved them. Here is his recipe.

Making of egg quesadilla


8 eggs

2-3 jalapenos, finely chopped

50g red onion, finely chopped

½ cup of finely chopped coriander stems and leaves

200g tasty or gruyere cheese, grated

Continue reading “EGG QUESADILLA”


In a formal Italian meal, risotto is served as a primo or first course and then the secondi or meat course follows. Obviously there is a lot of eating over the course of the evening /night happens. I like the risotto to stand on its own so I pack it with lots of flavour even though I say so myself! I may serve a small starter or a dessert when I make risotto.

This was a big hit with my family and I urge you to try it. The success of your risotto depends on your stock. I like to make my own stocks and if you are after any stock recipes, hit the search bar.

Pea and Prawn Risotto


300g Carnaroli or Arborio rice (risotto rice)

400g large or jumbo prawns, (16-20 numbers)

150ml dry white wine

1.125 litre fish stock preferably home made

40g butter, divided

20ml olive oil

1.5 cups thawed peas, divided

2 tablespoons parsley pesto

150g finely chopped onion

Continue reading “PEA & PRAWN RISOTTO”


I reckon you can make fritters with just about anything – a case in point are my pea fritters. They have edamame beans as well as kale – so I feel this is a complete meal. They are quick and easy that is take less than 45 minutes from start to finish.

Pea fritters with tomato chilli jam


250g frozen peas, divided (thawed)

150g edamame beans, thawed

2-3 cloves garlic

1 red onion, finely chopped

50g kale, chopped

20 mint leaves

2 eggs

1/2 tsp baking powder

30g corn flour

30g rice flour

Salt and pepper to taste

Olive oil for pan frying


Put the edamame beans and 100 grams of the frozen peas in a food processor along with garlic, mint and kale. Add salt and pepper. Process for a minute or so until it is more than coarsely ground but not too smooth. Mix in the remaining peas and pulse for a few seconds so the peas are broken but still retain most of the shape. Remove to a bowl. Stir in the finely chopped onion and set aside.

Whisk the eggs with the corn flour, rice flour and baking powder. Fold in the pea mixture. Heat a pan and add a tablespoon of mixture to the pan in batches. Spoon a little oil on each fritter so it does not stick to the pan. Press down to flatten slightly and continue frying both sides on medium heat for 2-3 minutes until brown on both sides. Depending on size of your pan, you can do three to four fritters at a time. Repeat until all mixture has been fried. Makes 12 fritters. Serve with tomato relish.


When you feel like a no fuss, one pot dish for dinner, this is perfect as it is easy and tasty too. You can replace the kale with spinach.

Israeli couscous with kale and fried egg


450g Israeli couscous

50g red onion, finely chopped

4 medium cloves garlic, finely chopped

100g of kale or cavalo nero, rib removed and finely chopped

2tbsps currants

2 sundried tomatoes in oil, finely chopped

5tbsps extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp za’atar seasoning

1 tsp ground sumac

3 cups hot water

4tsps lemon or lime juice

2tsps harissa

Salt and pepper to taste

4 large eggs


In a small bowl combine the lime juice with harissa. In another small bowl, combine the sumac with za’ atar. Set aside.

In a large sauce pan over medium, heat 4 tablespoons of oil until shimmering. Add the couscous and cook, stirring constantly, until lightly browned, 3-4 minutes.

Pour in ½ cup of the hot water and cook, stirring, until most of the water is absorbed, about 2 minutes. Repeat this 3 more times. On the fourth time, add the garlic, kale, currants, salt and pepper. Mix in well after adding the last half cup of hot water. You should have cooked the couscous for a total of 15 minutes or so and the couscous has a bite but cooked. Taste and check for seasoning. Stir in the sundried tomatoes and onion and continue cooking for a further minute. Turn the heat off and keep warm.

In another fry pan over medium, add a teaspoon of oil. Crack an egg and cook for about 3 minutes until the whites are set but yolks are runny. Repeat with the remaining eggs.

Divide the couscous among four bowls. Top with a fried egg and add a generous sprinkling of sumac mixture. Drizzle the harissa mixture too. Serve immediately. Serves 4.


A lot of people say they don’t like tofu. Ten years back that was me. The thing about tofu is that it has no flavour of its own and happily take on whatever flavour you throw at it. There are several types of tofu – silken, soft, firm, extra firm, marinated, etc.

For this dish, I took inspiration from Adam Liaw’s recipe. This is simple, easy and you can put it together in ten minutes.

Silken tofu


300g silken tofu

75g onion, finely chopped

2-3 cloves garlic finely chopped

3tbsps vegetable oil

1tsp sesame oil

2tsps soy sauce

Pinch of sugar

Finely chopped spring onion for garnish


Invert the silken tofu onto two or three layers of kitchen paper while you work on the next step.

Put the vegetable oil on medium low heat in a small saucepan. Add the onions and garlic and fry on medium heat for 10 minutes until lightly browned. Mix in the soy sauce and pinch of sugar along with the sesame oil.

Discard the kitchen paper and unmould by inverting the silken tofu onto a serving platter. Spoon the onion mixture on top of the tofu and drizzle the liquid evenly onto the tofu. Garnish with the spring onions and serve at room temperature.

Serves 4 as part of an Asian themed meal.