Monthly Archives: April 2011

Cooking Classes for the Month of May

Hello from Fiji, it’s wonderful to be here this time of year, I am still on my holidays but I thought I better get my May Classes out especially since its Mothers Day on the 8th of May.  So classes for May are as follows:

Saturday 7th May 10 to 12.30 pm

A Brunch for Mum – Mother’s Day Class

This class is open to Mum and Child or Dad and Child. Let’s do something nice for Mum on Mother’s Day. You will learn:

  1. Vegetarian Burgers
  2. A Savory Cheese and Chicken Muffin
  3. Tempura Vegetables

This is a fully hands on class.  You will be working in pairs.

Price per Parent and Child: $120 (extra child $30) Class will commence once there are 5 pairs of participants.

Saturday 7th May 2 to 4.30 pm

Make and Decorate a Mother’s Day Cake.

This class is open to Dad’s and kids alike. You will be working in pairs. Each pair will receive a cake to decorate and take home.

You will learn,

  1. Chocolate Cake
  2. Chocolate Butter Cream
  3. Fondant Icing
  4. Cut out Designs
  5. Decorating a whole cake

Price Per Pair of Parent and Child or Siblings: $105 (extra child $30) Class will commence once there are five sets of participants.

Saturday May 14th 10 to 12.30 pm

These are some of the chicken delights I ate on my trip.  I’ts healthy, easy and just so tasty. You will learn:

  1.  Rosemary Chicken Skewers with Lemon Salt
  2. Baked Cheesy Chicken Asparagus Crepes

Price Per Person: $70 (Class will commence once there are 6 students)

Saturday May 14th – 2 to 4.30 pm

Desserts 

Desserts I ate in Australia. I ate these rather tasty and easy to make deserts while in Australia. So we’re learning it this week.

  1. Soy Banana Pancakes with Honey Comb Butter
  2. Pavlova
  3. Little Blueberry or Strawberry Custards

Price Per Person: $95 (Class will commence once there are 6 students)

Sunday May 15th – 2 to 4.30 pm

A Day of Vegetarian Pies and Delights.

These are some of the stuff I ate at Byron Bay Market, it was awesome.  You will learn

  1.  Olive Oil Pastry
  2. Roasted Vegetable Tart
  3. Vegetarian Quiche
  4. Creamy Curried Mushroom Pie

Price Per Person: $100 (Class will commence once there are  6 students)

Saturday May 21st – 2 to 4.30

Icy Desserts – A first.

I’ve had some nice icy desserts in this hot weather here in Australia and Fiji and I’ve finally got the guts to do this class.  I will need three days confirmation for the class so as to have enough ice cream and gelato ready as we will not be able to consume the stuff we make straight away.

You will learn:

  1. Mango Lime Gelato
  2. Cardamom Coffee and Almond Ice Cream

Price Per Class: $65 (Class will commence once there are 5 students)

Sunday May 22nd – 2 to 4.30

Tea Time Favorites.

Three of my favorite teatime favorites, tested and tried too many times.

  1.  Flourless Cupcakes with Meringue topping
  2. Lemon Puffs
  3. Chorizos

Price Per Person: $95 (Class will commence once there are 5 students)

Please call 016 6827465  or Emilia Salim on 012 5926 079or email me at nicholas_pillai@yahoo.com to confirm your places.  Alternatively you may check out my blog, www.nicholaspillai.wordpress.com for further details or changes.

Classes will be held at 70 Road 14/24 Petaling Jaya.

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My Oaty Chappati Recipe

My rather unround Oaty Chappati

I had this craving for Chappati the other day and was worried because of all the flour I would consume seeing that I like to eat my Chappati on its own. So cleverness here devised a way to make the rather carby and heavy Chappati into something with a little bit more fiber so hence Oaty Chappati Recipe.

Here are the ingredients:

Atta Flour                                 2 cups

Plain Flour                                ½  cup

Rolled Oats                              ½ cup

Vegetable Ghee                        1 tbsp

Water                                       enough to make a nice dough

Salt                                          about 1 tsp

Method:

The Three Carbs

  1. Place all the ingredients together with exception of the water.
  2. Stir it and the lowly pour in the water little by little.
  3. Mix the dough till it comes away from the sides of the bowl and does not stick to your hand.
  4. Leave aside or place it

    A Dollop of Ghee

    in the fridge for a few hours.

  5. Portion it into small balls and then roll it out
  6. Heat a non stick pan and place the chappati in it.
  7. Turn the chappati and use a kitchen tissue to press it as shown, This will make it more puffy.
  8. Turn it again and d the same thing. Do not cook it till it is dark or browned.
  9. Serve warm

It is a good idea not to prepare chappati when you are hungry as freshly mixed chappati dough is not as nice.  It should be kept aside a few hours.

You may cling wrap it and place it in the fridge for a few days.

Country Farm Organics – Juice Bar, Restaurant, Retail Shop – Bangsar Shopping Village

Tonight’s meal was rather unplanned, we went to visit Hafiq at the hospital and so since we were in the Pantai / Bangsar area, Chia Chen decided we should have something healthy, and for some reason she kept talking about Spinach Soup even to poor sick Hafiq and his family that she never met before, so we (Poh Leng and me) knew she was pretty serious about it.

Getting there was easy and getting a park was easy enough. Looking for Country Farm Organics was something else. We walked all around and had to ask the guards where it was, we went out at every entrance of the complex only to find it right in front. So off we marched in and since we were the only third of fourth table that night and by far the biggest group, we were soon glancing through the menu to see what we could eat.

I thought that the waitress was excellent at upselling. She could sell her stuff because she had good product knowledge, so she marketed her foods well. Any question I popped to her, being difficult and all, and she could give me a quick and truthful answer very quickly.

So for starters, no guesses what Chia Chen had… Organic Spinach Soup. I had a Vegetable Tom Yum Soup and Poh Leng had Pumpkin Soup.

We also ordered our main courses, and so Chia Chen had Rice and Country Chicken Goulash, Poh Leng had a Grilled Fish with a pasta sauce, and I being the difficult one wanted something with tofu and something light and all and was told to try the Country Farm Special Salad with Sushi Rolls.

In less then three minutes, our soups arrived. It was that quick!

Chia Chen had a big family size bowl of Spinach Soup, and it was really nice. Homely and a kind of soup that is good on a nice cool night. I think it would be the perfect comfort food for a single person, because after a bowl of that, you’d feel really loved. Everyone liked it, perfect start to the meal.

My Tom Yum Vegetable soup was also perfectly what I required, and with chockfuls of vegetables, it was wholesome and awesome to whet the appetite. It was not just floating vegetables but was jam packed with nicely cut bite size vegetables. Another loveable soup.

As for Poh Leng’s Organic Pumpkin Soup, hmmmm, ok it was a little insipid for my liking. Having made nice rich pumpkin soup a few days earlier as a class, somehow I expected something more robust and

My rather badly taken Pumpkin Soup photo

rich. It was nice and light and I guess I should not be talking about rich creamy soups because a person like me who is suppose to be watching his girth should have appreciated the Organic Pumpkin Soup. But still……

Main Courses arrived by the third or fourth spoon of our soups. I did not understand what the rush was but there it was three main courses all pushed aside while we sat and had soup. I must say this rush was thoroughly unnecessary but there it was.

Now let me start with my main course. I thought it was quite the work of art. The salad was colorful and artistically arranged. I think even a normal vegetable hater would have loved it just because it was arranged in a well thought off manner. The Sushi was made off brown rice. Now I have not tasted brown rice sushi before, although I have seen it a few times here and there but was never inclined to try it.

My sushi was really nice. The combination of the egg, and the lightly pickled cucumber and carrot, and bits of I believe was mushroom was just perfect. I loved it.   It would be something I could go back for although I am supposed to be on a carb free diet.

I had Fu Chok which was blanched, and Fresh tofu with a wheat germ and chopped seaweed topping, and the dressing was another well thought of as it complemented everything on my plate. The dressing comprised off soy sauce, sesame oil, balsamic vinegar and probably a few other ingredient which I think I should have written down as I was eating.

Chia Chen’s Country Chicken Goulash served with Brown Rice was also another homey dish. Now I am used to creamy goulash and since this was cream free, it was different. I did think the chef was a tad bit heavy with the tomato paste, and it probably needed more black pepper to give it a bit of a kick seeing that it was not creamy. One thing I have to point

Fresh Crunchy Vegetables the way it should be

out is that the plate consisted of a lot of vegetables and there were no repeats. I thought that was pretty cool, because I have been to places where we everything is a set meal and similar vegetables cooked in different styles appears on the same plate. This was not the case. Taste wise I could get used to it.

Now Poh Leng’s grilled fish was to me a downer. It was dull, it was insipid, it appearance wise it was not very appealing. Taste wise too, I thought it was rather simple and could have been improved. The tomato gravy was light and refreshing and the little not overcooked cherry tomatoes looked rather appealing, but I think the cucumber was somehow not necessary. Perhaps the chef should have steamed or pan seared some yellow squash, or even a leafy vegetable. This is just me.

All in all, it was a good relaxing night. Food was nice and light, tasty in its own way, and since I am an advocate of healthy food and I have a whole recipe book of healthy recipes, I must say Country Farm Organics did do a good job.

I did not have a chance to mosey around their retail shop, perhaps next time when I go there again. I will for sure.