Monthly Archives: May 2013

How to save on LP Gas? Save Gas, Save Money

LP Gas is commonly used in cooking in many households. With the escalation in price of LP Gas, housewives are in a quandary as to how they could stretch their 13.5 kg gas for a month. One might say it is impossible, but with a little care, you could economize on gas. We give you a few tips on how you could save on gas usage.

1.      Thaw frozen food prior to cooking. The heat energy that would be needed to bring down the frozen food’s temperature to room temperature can be saved. Most housewives, do not thaw frozen food completely and leave it to the heat from the gas cooker to do the needful. This method is not only a waste of gas, but the curry you are preparing will not be tasty, due to the fact that the ingredients added will not absorb into the meat or vegetables properly.

2.      If water needs to be boiled for beverages several times a day, use a thermos flask instead.

3.      Refrain from using too much water when cooking, as excess water will mean excess usage of gas.

4.      Wipe all cooking utensils prior to placing them on the stove, as a minute or two of gas will be needed to disperse excess water around and underneath the cooking utensils.

5.      Whenever possible close cooking utensils with lids when cooking on the stove. This will definitely save a lot of energy and a substantial saving could be derived.

6.      Using a pressure cooker saves a lot of gas as cooking in it consumes less time.

7.      Prior to cooking, make ready all vegetables and meat. Have all ingredients at hand. This avoids wasting time once the flame is lit.

8.      Reduce the flame when boiling starts. This not only saves energy, but makes your food taste better.

9.      Although this tip may not find favour with Sri Lankan housewives, it is worth a try. Cook larger quantities and store for late consumption.

10.  It is best that lentils are soaked prior to cooking. Remember that a sizeable saving on gas could be derived.

11.  If you find the burner giving out an orange light along with the blue light, its time you cleaned your gas cooker. Yellow flames are an indication that incomplete burning is taking place.

12.  Use aluminium or stainless steel pans and not clay pots, as metals are good conductors of heat and clay is definitely not.

13.  Most gas cookers have a smaller burner and a large burner. It is advisable at all times possible to use the smaller burner and if you are using the larger burner, it is advisable to reduce the flame.

14. Plan your meal times – If all members of the family eat together, which signifies togetherness and brings joy, frequent preheating of food before serving can be avoided. If eating together is not possible, store cooked hot food in insulated containers to retain heat

15. Always check the regulator, pipes and burners for leaks and also make certain that the regulator is switched off after cooking. This bit of advice is twofold, in that just as much as you save on gas, you will avoid accidents as well.

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Puli Meen [Sour Fish] : A special Kumar Pereira recipe

Kumar Pereira, of MasterChef Australia fame, was in Sri Lanka in January 2013 for a culinary tour. Mc Currie was the Official Spice Sponsor for the tour and we will be posting the recipes for some of the dishes that were presented during this tour.

This is a dry, sour and spicy fish preparation that Sri Lankans would have [very small portions, as it is quite intense ] with hoppers at breakfast.

500 gms firm white fleshed fish [Seer]
2- 3 cloves garlic
2 tbsp Mc Currie chilli powder [or more if you like it hotter]
1 tbsp Mc Currie cumin powder
1 ½ cups vinegar
3 tsp sugar
½ tbsp Mc Currie mustard sseds
1 tbsp Mc Currie tamarind paste
½ tbsp Mc Currie turmeric powder
vegetable oil for frying
Cut fish into small cubes and rub with turmeric powder and salt and set aside for 20 to 30  minutes.

Deep fry fish pieces until brown and crisp and drain on paper.

Grind up all the other ingredients in a mortar and pestle using a few spoonfuls of vinegar to moisten and make a paste. Fry mustard seeds in a little oil until they splutter and pop, then add the spice paste  and cook on low heat until cooked through [10 – 1 mins], add remaining vinegar and sugar and simmer until gravy is thick. This is best made in a clay pot [chatty].

Kumar Pereira likes adding a few curry leaves as well when frying the spice paste when making this.

Visit Kumar’s website for more such wonderful recipes and the Mc Currie website for all your spice needs.

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