“Cheerios” Chuduva

A few years ago when my (adult) daughter started eating Cheerios regularly, I came up with the idea of making Chuduva (a spicy savory snack mix) with them.  At that time, Multi Grain Cheerios contained 100% of the RDA of iron per serving*… and since my daughter had an iron deficiency during her pregnancy it was the perfect snack for her. She was also told that having Cheerios with milk slows down the absorption of iron so she had been looking for creative ways to eat them.

I still make Cheerios Chuduva regularly (except with regular Cheerios which has less sugar than Multi Grain) as my retired husband likes to munch on something during the day – its still one of his favorites!

*Now the recipe has changed and it only has 45% of the RDA of iron per serving, similar to regular Cheerios.                                                          IMG_2224

Ingredients

8 cups Cheerios

2 tablespoon oil

2 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 sprig curry leaves (optional)

3 whole red chillies

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper ( red chili powder)

2 cups potato sticks

1 cup dry roasted unsalted peanuts (any type of nut will work)

1/2- 1 cup raisins (optional)

 Preparation

Heat oil in a large wok, add the cumin seeds, red chilis and curry leaves. Stir till the cumin seeds start to brown. Add the turmeric, salt, and cayenne pepper. Stir and add the raisins. Stir for 30 seconds and add the cheerios, potato sticks and peanuts.

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Continue to stir on low heat until the mixture is well mixed for about 3 minutes. Let cool and store in an airtight container.

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Baklava Rolls

A friend recently asked me to help her make Baklava for her son’s wedding as I had made it many times in the past. It might look difficult to make but it’s pretty simple, and also freezes well… so it is the perfect pastry for a big event!  Since I know another friend who makes them quite often, I called her to compare our recipes and in addition, got a few extra tips from her.

I typically prefer to use the Athens brand of filo(or phyllo) dough which has 2 sealed packets of rolls so if I don’t need a large quantity I can halve the recipe. (There are other brands which come in long rolls with only one sealed packet.) IMG_1749Its easier to roll up the pastry, versus making the traditionally shaped baklava.  I froze the baklava in the cookie tray that I baked them in, covered with heavy duty aluminum foil.  When ready to use them, simply thaw out and arrange the pieces on your serving platter.

Ingredients

1 package of filo dough, thawed
3 cups shelled walnuts, pulsed in a food processor (not too fine or coarse)

IMG_17363/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon, optional
4 ounces (1 stick of butter) melted till the solids separate out (or ghee)

Syrup:

1 1/4 sugar
1 cup water
2 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon lime juice

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine the walnuts, sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and set aside. Use a cookie sheet with sides, and brush the entire pan with butter.

Remove 2 sheets of filo pastry, (keep the remaining pastry sheets covered by a damp cloth) brush very lightly with butter.IMG_1739

Fold the pastry in half, and then take about 2 tablespoons of the nut mixture and place it along one side.

IMG_1741Roll the pastry up tightly. Brush again with butter and stack along the width of the cookie sheet. Continue with the remaining pastry sheets.IMG_1742

Trim the ends and score into 5 to 6 pieces along the entire length (not cut cutting all the way through). As you can tell, I completely forgot to trim the ends before baking to make it look neater!IMG_1737

Bake for 25 minutes until the rolls are medium brown. While baking, make the syrup.

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Syrup:

Place the sugar, water, honey and lime juice in a saucepan and cook over low heat until the sugar has melted. Continue to simmer for about 10 – 15 minutes.

Pour the hot syrup over the rolls as soon as they come out of the oven. When cool remove to serving platter. (If freezing, cover with heavy duty aluminum foil) Garnish with extra chopped walnuts.

Makes about 144 rolls. IMG_1747

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