Friday, September 30, 2011

Twice Baked Zucchini Soufflé

          “Four to six servings of fruits and vegetables per day (giving priority to the vegetables, of course)” – that is my healthy commitment! I can skip other food groups but I won’t stop short of anything to get those four cups of veggies! And the easiest way to complete these challenge, believe me, is to start a day with having some of them for breakfast. So, a vegetable frittata was a nice choice for me for a while: it’s versatile and quick to do on a busy morning. But eventually I got bored with this combination of breaky-classic eggs and my beloved vegetables. I started to look for new options and a nice idea occurred to me: a soufflé! The same combination of eggs and vegetables but much more exquisite! It’s simple and elaborate at the same time. Light, airy, just dreamy and practically guilt-free (seriously, there is just so-so little flour and butter in it that you shouldn’t bother to give it a thought– personally I never do!). So, I’ve tried broccoli soufflé, aubergine soufflé and last week it was zucchini’s turn. I came across the recipe at one of the websites but changed the sauce: the original one was a combination of tomato puree and sour cream but since I ran out of the last, I mixed a basic tomato-basil sauce with coconut milk (I make a similar one for my Asian-style chicken meatballs). In fact, you can bake the soufflé with whatever sauce you feel like. In the end of the day, if you cook for yourself, feel free to adjust a recipe to suit your own palate!

Beetroot Soup with Coconut Milk

         Last year after vocation spent in Moscow I eventually brought my blender here, to India. Immediately I developed a mania to blend all possible and impossible things and, as you may guess, creamed soups were often on a menu in our house. It was then that I remembered about a beetroot soup I’d once tried to make a year before during the Lent (I got the recipe from a website featuring vegan food). I was impressed by the flavors and an interesting, really unusual combination of beets and coconut milk but chunky vegetables in the stew made it more like “I’ll probably (rather than certainly) make it again” type of a dish. But since I had eventually got that necessary piece of equipment in my Kolkata kitchen, I decided to give the soup another try and to blend it! And oh….that was a vivid (bright-pinkish) example of how a texture can change the whole dish!
So, go ahead – indulge! Even if the whole place will look like a Barbie house (with funny pink slashes on the tables/stove/sink/wall) you won’t regret it – the soup is really worth it!
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