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Titbits for cocktails

Let guests dig into these tasty bites as they sip their drinks...


COCKTAIL SNACKS are always in demand. One has to use one's imagination to create tasty tidbits. Apart from the usual wafers, canapés, nuts (almonds, cashewnuts, peanuts) and dips, there are a variety of dishes one can make. Here are a few:

Yoghurt creamy dip in tarts

Ingredients

For the tart cases

Plain flour: 3 cups
Semolina: 1 cup
Hot oil: 6 tsp
Salt to taste
Oil for frying

For the Creamy yoghurt dip

Carrot (grated): 2
Cucumber (grated): 2
Cabbage (grated): 1 cup
Fresh thick curd: 2 cups
Fresh cream: 100 gm
Green chilli: 2-3 (finely chopped)
Coriander leaves: 2 tbsp (finely chopped)
Salt and pepper to taste
A little sugar (optional)

Method

For the tart cases

Mix the plain flour, semolina, heated oil and salt. Make dough by adding a little water. Knead firmly and keep aside for an hour. Roll out into small puris. Press over the tart moulds. Continue to make puris and press on the moulds. Deep-fry the moulds in hot oil until the tart cases are golden brown and crispy. Store in an airtight container. (You can make the tart cases two days in advance).

For Creamy yoghurt dip

Take the curd in a muslin cloth and hang for about two hours. Add salt to the grated carrot, cabbage and cucumber. Leave aside for a few minutes. Squeeze out the excess water. Mix the curd, cream, chopped green chillies, grated cabbage, carrots and cucumber, sprinkle salt, pepper and sugar (optional). Chill. When required to serve, fill the cases with the yoghurt dip. Top it with coriander. Do not fill too many tart cases at a time, as it will get soggy.

Cocktail samosas
Ingredients
Plain flour: ¾ cup
Semolina: 1 cup
Soda bi-carb: ½ tsp
Hot oil: 2 tbsp
For the filling
Paneer: 200 gm (grated)
Capsicum: 2 (finely chopped)
Onion: 2 (finely chopped)
Green chilli: 2-3 (finely chopped)
Red chilli powder: 1 tsp
Turmeric powder: a pinch
Garam masala: 1 tsp
Oil for seasoning: 1 tbsp
Salt to taste
Oil for frying

Method

Mix the plain flour, semolina and soda bi-carb. Rub oil to the flour. Add a little water and make stiff dough. Knead well and keep aside for 30 minutes. Heat the oil in a frying pan. Add onions, green chillies and capsicum and stir-fry for a few minutes till the onions are golden brown. Add the grated paneer, salt, red chilli powder and turmeric powder. Cook for a few minutes, then add the garam masala. Remove from gas and let it cool.

Make small balls of the dough. Roll out thin puris. Then cut the puris into two. Fold each half of the puris into a triangle to form a cone. Seal the edges of the cone by applying water. Fill the cone with the paneer filling. Make another small fold and close the cone with water. Shape it into a samosa.

Heat the oil and deep-fry the samosas on a low flame. Serve hot with tomato ketchup or chutney of your choice.

Stuffed mushrooms

Ingredients

Button mushroom: 20
Melted butter: 2 tsp
Onion: 1-2 tbsp (finely chopped)
Cheese (Amul): 2 tbsp (grated)
Coriander leaves: 2 tsp (chopped)
Ginger-chilli paste: a little
Mayonnaise (optional): 1 tbsp
Salt and pepper to taste

Method

Remove the stem from the mushrooms. Heat the butter, add the ginger-chilli paste and fry the onions in it till light brown. Add the grated cheese and coriander leaves. Mix well.

A tablespoon of mayonnaise can be added for flavour (optional). Stuff the mushrooms with the above mixture.

Arrange the stuffed mushrooms in a baking dish and bake it in an oven for five minutes (or bake in a microwave oven for two minutes). Serve hot.

Peanut and chana snatch

Ingredients

Peanuts: 3 cups (roasted and peeled)
Deep-fried Bengal gram dal (chana dal): 2 cups
Onion: 1 (finely chopped)
Green chillies: 2-3 (finely chopped)
Ginger: 1 piece (finely chopped)
Coriander leaves: 2-3 tbsp (finely chopped)
Gujarati sev: 1 cup
Chaat masala: 2 tsp
Salt to taste
Juice of 2 lemons

Method

Mix all the above ingredients except sev and coriander leaves.

Sprinkle sev and coriander leaves on the top just before serving.

Note: This snack should be made just before serving or it will become soggy

SUJATA MALANI

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