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Rangooni rice

This is one of the easiest, simplest and tastiest dishes that I have tasted with mutton. I came across this recipe on Pree’s blog and fell in love with it at first sight. Although I couldn’t wait to try it, I was sceptical that my family will even taste it as it has hardly any spices that mutton is usually cooked at our place. So, to be on safer side, I cooked it in meagre quantity just enough for myself. And guess what? I had to share the dish between the other three and was also admonished as to why I had made so less quantity of such a beautiful dish! From then on, this dish makes a regular appearance on our dinner table specially during winters when all you want is light soupy meals that are filling. I have tweaked Pree’s original recipe slightly to make it even more easier and to suit our palate. Try it and you will be impressed by its taste for sure.

Ingredients:

  • Mutton – 500 g (preferable bone in, but I have even made it with boneless meat)
  • Basmati / jasmine rice (Any fragrant rice would do, I prefer jasmine)
  • Ginger paste (1 tsp)
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil -2 tbsp
  • Garlic – sliced into thin roundels (10-15 cloves, the more the merrier)
  • Red chillies – 5 (or as per taste)
  • Lemon juice – 2 tsp

Method:

  1. In a pressure cooker add mutton, rice, ginger paste, salt and enough water to cook all this. Cook till 7-8 whistles (1-2 on high and rest on low flame)
  2. Once the pressure is released, open the cooker and mash the rice and mutton slightly so that they are well blended but not completely mashed. There should be small pieces of mutton soft mushy grains of rice.
  3. Add water if required to make it dense but not runny. The consistency should be that of a thick soup. Adjust salt at this stage. Keep it aside
  4. Heat oil in a pan and fry the dry red chillies till they are crisp, remove from oil and keep aside. Once cool, crush them with fingers to make flakes (Use gloves if necessary)
  5. In the same oil, fry the garlic roundels till they are crispy brown. Add this oil on the rice meat stew along with crushed chillies and lemon juice.
  6. Eat while it is hot.

 

Chicken roast

 

This blog has been gathering dust for more than a couple of years now. Although my passion for food has not deteriorated I have been too lazy to update the blog with recipes. My passion for food has infact increased by manifolds after moving out of India and trying out global cuisine. I have been experimenting a lot with food, clicking pictures as always but they never made it to the blog. Some time back I uploaded the pictures of food in Facebook and received a lot of recipe requests. I thought why not update the blog and share the link?

The first recipe that I jotted down after ages was this Chicken Roast flavoured with loads of Curry Leaves. This recipe has been adapted from the Kerala style chicken fry I learnt from a friend who is an awesome cook himself.

Half kilo chicken – cut into small pieces preferably bone in

Oil – 2-3 tbsp for frying

Grind together:

  • Red chillies – 5-6 ( add more if you like it hot)
  • Ginger – 1″ piece
  • Garlic – 5-6 cloves
  • Onion – 1 small or 1/2 medium (optional)
  • Curry leaves – 2 large handful
  • Salt

Method:

  1. Soak chicken in salt water overnight (in fridge)
  2. Next morning drain the water out, pat dry with kitchen towel and marinate in the ground masala.  Leave the chicken marinated in fridge for 1-2 hours.
  3. Heat 2-3 tbsp oil, add a few curry leaves, marinated chicken. Cook till all the chicken is cooked and dry.

Note:

  • You can completely skip the overnight soaking bit, and just marinate for half an hour in freezer if you are in a hurry. Still tastes great!
  • Instead of curry leaves, you can make it with kasuri methi.
  • If your chicken pieces are with skin and fat, add less oil initially as extra oil will ooze out while it’s cooking.

Lemon_Cake_1

I have been guilty of letting my blogs gather dust over months. Someone had rightly said that the longer the gap, the harder it is to get back. Although my experiments with food is still the same, the enthusiasm to click pictures and draft posts died a slow death. When colleagues / friends taste my food and ask for recipes, I still come back to the blog to look for links and feel sad for its dormant state. Recently one of my relatives suddenly pinged me on Facebook and appreciated my blog and asked why I have stopped posting new recipes. I promised her that I would post a recipe soon. It is the love and faith of readers that keeps the bloggers going. And I am so grateful to all you lovely people who frequent my blogs in spite of my erratic posting patterns.

Although I haven’t been active on my blogs, I have been regularly reading fellow bloggers. I recently came across this Lemon Cake recipe at TGND’s space and the picture and the comments tempted me to bake it at the earliest. TGND had in turn tried GB’s recipe. Thank you TGND and GB. The cake turned out amazingly delicious. The proof of the cake was in its disappearing 😀 I had actually prepared the cake to return one of Abbas’s colleague’s dabba. I baked it in the evening and there were only a couple of pieces left by morning. I skipped the lemon glaze this time, but I’m gonna try it the next time.

Ingredients:

For the cake:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup maida or all purpose flour
  • A pinch of salt
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest (Whole lemon can be carefully grated so that only the yellow peel gets grated and not the white portion. Peel of 2 lemons yield approx 1 tbsp of zest)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk (You can add 1/2 a tsp of vinegar in 1/4 cup milk and let it rest for 15 mins instead)

For the glaze:

  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons powdered sugar

Recipe:

1. In a bowl, mix together the lemon juice, egg, oil, buttermilk, lemon zest, and granulated sugar. Beat well, till the sugar melts fully.

2. Add the other ingredients – maida, salt, baking powder, baking soda and wheat flour – to the bowl. Fold into the wet mixture gently. Mix everything thoroughly.

3. Preheat the oven for 10 minutes at 180 degrees. In the meanwhile, grease and flour a cake tin and keep ready. (I used a bundt cake tin)

4. When the oven is hot and ready, pour the batter into the cake tin. Let it bake for about 40 minutes at 180 degrees, or until a knife inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.

5. While the cake is cooking, prepare the lemon glaze. For the glaze, mix together the teaspoonful of lemon juice and powdered sugar well. While the cake is still warm, remove it from the cake pan and spread the glaze evenly all over it.

Lemon_Cake_2 Lemon_Cake_3

Dhoka is a special Bong dish which involves numerous steps and is quite time consuming. It’s basically a gravy of fried lentil cakes. I have never attempted the dish though.

Ma recently saw this innovative version of Dhoka made out of eggs. It was a welcome change to the normal Dimer Jhol that we have at least once a week. Ma forgot a few ingredients and a few proportions. I referred to Sandeepa’s recipe for the egg cakes and made the gravy as per my own Egg curry recipe:

Ingredients:

For the Steamed Egg Cakes or Dimer Dhoka

  • Eggs – 6
  • Onion Paste – 1 small, chopped fine
  • Coriander leaves – finely chopped about 1/4 cup
  • Green Chillies – 3 chopped fine (optional)
  • Tomato – ¼ of a medium chopped fine (optional)
  • Ginger paste – 1 tsp
  • Milk – 3 tbsp
  • Salt – as per taste
  • Baking Powder – a pinch

For the gravy:

  • Potatoes – 2, medium sized, cut into quarters
  • Onion – 1, medium sized, sliced
  • Ginger paste – 2 tsp
  • Garlic paste – 1 tsp
  • Red chilli powder – 2-3 tsp
  • Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Cumin powder – 1 tsp
  • Cinnamon stick – 1″
  • Bay Leaves – 2
  • Salt – to taste
  • Sugar – a pinch
  • Oil – 2 tbsp (Mustard oil can be used for authentic Bong taste, I genrally mix mustard and sunflower oil)
To pound:
  • Cardamom – 2-3
  • Cloves – 3-4
  • Cumin seeds – 1 tsp

Method:

For the steamed cakes:

  1. Beat the eggs in a bowl.
  2. To it add the chopped onions, chopped green chillies, chopped tomato, chopped coriander, ginger paste, pinch of baking powder, milk and salt. Beat well.
  3. Steam it using a steamer. I greased a steal container and poured the egg mixture and steamed in a pressure cooker till the first whistle and 4 mins on sim. As per Sandeepa’s instructions, I tool out the container as soon as the cooker let off pressure.
  4. Cut into cubes.
  5. The recipe that Ma had seen in TV had an additional step of shallow frying the cubes before putting them into the gravy. This is optional.

For the gravy:

  1. Marinate potato quarters with salt and turmeric powder and shallow fry in oil till the exteriors turn golden. Keep aside.
  2. Temper the remaining oil with cumin seeds and bay leaves.
  3. When the cumin seeds splutter, add chopped onions and a pinch of sugar. Saute till they are golden brown.
  4. Add ginger and garlic paste. Saute till the raw smell goes.
  5. Now add half a cup of water along with red chilli powder, turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, and salt.
  6. Also add the steamed cakes and potatoes. Gently stir.
  7. Now add a cup of water and pound garam masala, adjust salt if required. Cover and cook till the potatoes are cooked. Remove the lid and cook till the gravy has attained your desired thickness.

Bod actually means head in Konkani. At my mom’s place, we hardly ate fish head. The maid who cleaned fish would take the heads away. But on rare occassions, they were retained to make this curry. My Annu (dad) and Annamma (granny) loved it. Specially during days when my Granny would be feeling sick and not feeling like eating anything, Amma would make this or any other spicy curry get her taste buds back alive.

I made this curry with mackerel and licked the last bit of the gravy off. You can make it with minimal ingredients that are easily available in any Indian kitchen. I prefer to make it with coconut oil. Do give it a shot, if your taste buds don’t get tantalized, then ‘pasia waapas’

Ingredients:

  • Mackerel Fish – 2, cut into 3 pieces
  • Onion – 3 nos, medium sized, finely chopped
  • Chilli powder – 2 tbsp or more as per spice tolerance
  • Tamarind extract – 1 tbsp, if thick ( I used readymade extract)
  • Salt to taste
  • Coconut oil – 3 tbsp

Method:

  1. Heat oil in a pan. Add onions and saute till they turn golden, do not brown them much.
  2. Add chilli powder and saute for a minute on low flame.
  3. Add tamarind extract, salt and 2 cups of water.
  4. Add in the fish pieces, cover and let it simmer covered.
  5. Stir lightly in between.
  6. Switch off the gas once the gravy has attained your desired consistency. (It should neither be too runny nor thick)
  7. Serve hot with steamed rice.

Chicken Tikka Kabab

This is a very easy peasy recipe for non veg appetizer. It consumes time but manual intervention is very minimal. What I generally do is hang curd in a muslin cloth while cooking lunch on a weekend. Marinate chicken with the curd and some masala after lunch. Just before dinner, I put the pieces on skewers to grill in the oven and sniff around the most amazing Tandoori smell that fills the entire home 🙂 The amount of oil / butter used is also so less yet the kababs turn out amazing…

Recipe:

Ingredients:

  • Boneless chicken pieces – 500g, cut in 1″ dices
  • Lemon juice – 1 tsp
  • Salt – to taste
  • Hung curd – 3 tbsp (Curd – 1 cup)
  • Tandoori chicken masala powder – 2 tbsp
  • Ginger paste – 1 tbsp
  • Garlic paste – 1 tbsp
  • Red food colour – a pinch (optional)
  • Melted butter / oil – 1 tbsp
Method:
  1. Hang curd in muslin cloth and let the excess water drop away.
  2. Marinate chicken pieces with lemon juice and salt. Keep aside for 15 mins.
  3. Marinate the chicken pieces with rest of the ingredients except butter. Keep in the refrigerator for 4-5 hours.
  4. Put the pieces on a bamboo skewers, brush lightly with melted butter or oil all over and grill in oven for 20-25 minutes. (I have an auto menu option for tandoori in my oven)
  5. Serve hot with onion rings, lemon wedges and / or green chutney.

Marinated chicken pieces


							

Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon Rolls have been doing the rounds in the blogosphere and there was no way I could not get enticed by  its beauty. I checked so many recipes and finally decided to go with Aipi’s. The recipe was short with simple instructions and at first glance, it appeared very much do-able.  It was so easy to make but the proofing time while working with yeast left me impatient as always. I was bubbling with enthusiasm to dig into these sinful rolls. When they were baking, the aroma of cinnamon and bread wafted all around our home and it felt so so heavenly. The rolls were outright delicious and I’m planning to make a savoury version soon…

Here’s the recipe:

For the dough:

  • AP Flour / Maida – 3 1/4 cups
  • Rapid Rise Yeast – 3 tbsp  (I used Glorispan Active Dried Yeast)
  • Butter – 4 tbsp (melted)
  • Sugar – 4 tbsp
  • Salt – 3/4 tsp
  • Milk – 1 1/4 cup (warm)

For the cinnamon layer:

  • Sugar – 6 tbsp  mixed with 1 tbsp ground cinnamon powder (I ground sugar and cinnamon together in the mixie)
  • Butter – 2 tbsp melted

For the glaze:

  • Powdered sugar – 1 cup
  • Vanilla extract – 1 tsp
  • Butter – 1 tsp at room temperature
  • Milk – 3-4 tbsp

Method:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, add milk, sugar and yeast. Let it stand for 2-3 minutes. (I kept it for 10 minutes till the solutions turned frothy)
  2. Add in melted butter and salt. Grease your palm with olive oil.
  3. Add in flour slowly mixing all the while and then knead into a soft dough for about 5 minutes.
  4. Apply oil on top of the dough, cover with a wet kitchen towel. Keep the bowl aside in a warm place for 30-45 minutes or till the dough rises to double up in volume.
  5. Gently deflate and knead for a minute.
  6. Roll the dough into a 10″ X 12″ rectangle using a rolling pin. Brush melted butter all over. Now sprinkle the cinnamon sugar uniformly all over.
  7. Roll it into a log and cut into pieces 1″ apart. Place the slices flat on a greased baking tray atleast 1/2 ” apart.
  8. Cover it and let it rise for another 45 minutes.
  9. Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake for 20-22 minutes until golden brown.
  10. Whisk together milk, sugar, butter and vanilla till it attains think but pouring consistency.
  11. Let the rolls cool for about 10-15 minutes, pour the glaze all over.
  12. This can be served warm or kept in air tight container. Warm before serving.

Dal Nawaabi

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My Era and I have been frequenting each others’ blogs for some time now. One thing common between the two of us is our passion for food. When I discovered the hard core foodie in her, I asked her to share a few recipes. Least did I know that she had a treasure trove of ‘hatke’ dishes up her sleeves. My bookmark list is flooding with every other recipe that she posted till date. Check her blog for more…

Coming to the Dal Nawaabi, I simply wanted to make it as soon as I saw it in her space. I am crazy about Dal. Rarely a day passes without dal being prepared in my kitchen. And I am known to finish my meals not by concluding it with a desert but by pouring dal onto my plate and ‘burkoying’ (act of picking fluid food from the plate using one’s finger and licking it off using a slurrrping sound) it. When I made this Dal Nawaabi, I had spoonfuls of rice and burkofied Dal n number of times. (Value of ‘n’ is better left untold)

Ingredients:

  • Split Black Urad Dal ( skin on) – 1 cup Or 70% of the mixture
  • Red Kidney beans (Rajma) – 1/3 cup Or 20% of the mixture
  • Split Chana Dal – 1/6 cup or 10% of the mixture
  • Tomatoes – 2 to 3, finely chopped
  • Onions – 2 medium-sized, finely chopped
  • Ginger – about 2 inches, finely chopped
  • Garlic – 4 to 5 cloves, crushed and chopped
  • Fresh coriander – half a bunch to one cup full finely chopped
  • Green Chili – 2 finely chopped
  • Red Chili Powder 1 tsp
  • Turmeric Powder – 3/4 tsp
  • Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
  • Salt – to taste
  • Butter around 60 grams
  • Oil – 1 tbsp (any oil you use to cook food in)
  • Baking Soda – a pinch

Method:

  1. Soak the black Urad dal, Rajma and Chana dal overnight. I add a pinch of baking powder in the water while soaking.
  2. In a pressure cooker transfer the dal-rajma mixture, add around four cups of water. To this add salt and turmeric powder and one tablespoon of cooking oil.
  3. Close the lid of the pressure cooker and let the dal mixture simmer on medium flame till around 5 to 6 whistles blow. (Do not cook on high flame, else the dal mixture won’t cook through).
  4. Once the dals are cooked, place the cooker on medium flame and using the back of the round table-spoon mash the rajma and dals till you achieve a thick consistency dal with no individual ingredients visible.
  5. Adjust the water to a consistency of your liking.
  6. Add a generous dollop of butter to the dal while it is simmering.
  7. Add half of the coriander leaves (around half a cup) finely chop them and add to the cooking dal.

For the Tadka:

  1. Take the remaining butter in a pan, heat it. Now add cumin seeds, chopped onion, crushed garlic cloves, finely chopped ginger and let them saute till they start getting golden on their edges.
  2. Now add chopped green chili, chopped tomatoes, chopped coriander leaves in the above and let them fry till tomatoes are tender.
  3. Add one teaspoon of red chili powder and immediately add this tadka to the prepared dal.
  4. Place the lid immediately to avoid the aroma from escaping.
  5. Serve hot with Indian bread or flavoured rice.


Home Made Pizza – from scratch

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I have been making pizzas at home by buying the pizza bases off the shelf from stores. Although they turn out yum, the base always feels somewhat rubbery and thick. I have been looking around for simple recipes for home-made pizza dough. After searching through the internet, I finally made  my own thin crust pizza from scratch. It did turn out eons better than my pizzas so far. Ma even said that they taste better than the ones we get in pizza joints. Am I on Cloud 9 or what?

Recipe Source: Veg Bowl

Ingredients:
Dry yeast – 1 tsp
Water – 1/4 cup
Sugar – 1 tsp
Salt to taste
AP Flour / Maida – 1 cup

Water, if required

Olive oil – 1 tsp

Sauce/Toppings:

Tomato puree – 1 cup
Garlic – 4-5 cloves, finely chopped
Herbs of your choice – 1 tbsp + 1 tbsp
Tomatoes, onions, capsicum – chopped in rings
Mozzarella cheese – 1/4 cup, grated
Salt and Pepper or chilli flakes to taste

Method:

1. Mix yeast with a tsp of sugar and lukewarm water and keep aside for 1o mins. If it becomes frothy at the end of 10 mins, proceed. Else, it’s better to use good quality yeast.

2. Take flour in a large mixing bowl, make a well in the center. Pour the yeast mixture along with olive oil and salt. Knead the mixture into a soft pilable dough. If the dough is sticking to your hand, smear your palm with a few drops of olive oil and continue to knead. Once you get a smooth dough, cover with a kitchen towel and keep aside in a warm place for about an hour.

3. To make the Pizza sauce, heat olive oil in  a pan, saute garlic and spices. Add tomato puree and saute till thick and adjust salt.

4. Punch the risen dough ball and knead for a couple of minutes. Divide the dough into two ball and roll into thin pizza crust. You can roll the whole dough into a single crust but I made two to suit my oven size.

5. Preheat the oven to 220C.

6. Spread the pizza sauce evenly on the pizza crusts. Arrange tomato / onion / capsicum rings. Sprinkle evenly grated mozzarella cheese on top of it and a dash of olive oil. Finally sprinkle little salt and pepper powder or chilli flakes.

6. Bake for 20 mins. Keep checking as every oven might be different.

Rajma Masala

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When R’s Mom wrote about how her husband RD makes Rajma which is out of this world, I requested her for the recipe. She asked RD and check how he jotted down the recipe in such a neat and orderly manner. When I tried the recipe for the first time, the quality of Rajma I had used were not good. They were adamant to get cooked and hard as stone. Although the gravy turned out lipsmacking good, the Rajma beans wouldn’t disintegrate. I made this again yesterday with better quality of Rajma and we were all bowled over by the taste. I tweaked the recipe only a teeny weeny bit. Here’s RD’s recipe copied and pasted verbatim with the only two changes that I made in parenthesis.

Getting the Rajma Ready
Soak Rajma beans overnight – use lukewarm water (I added a pinch of baking soda to the water)
Cook the beans in a pressure cooker – about 6-7 whistles are required

The Gravy – Ingredients
3 midsized onions – finely chopped
2 midsize tomatoes – minced – or a bowl of tomato puree
2 green chillies
2 cloves of Garlic and little ginger – you can use Ginger garlic paste as well
3 – spoons of curd.
2 spoons of cooking oil
1 small cube of butter
Turmeric – Haldi
Garam Masala / Rajma Masala (I used Everest Chicken Masala powder)
Jeera – Cumin seeds
Mustard seeds – Rai
Jeera Powder – 1.5 spoons
Dhaniya Powder – 1 spoon
Little bit of Hing
Coriander to season

Preparation
Heat the oil in a kadai and add the cumin seeds and mustard seeds. After about 1 min, add the onion, ginger, garlic and green chillies and fry till the onion become soft and brown in color.
After about 5 mins add the minced tomato and fry for about 2 mins.
Then add the haldi, garam masala, salt, hing, jeera powder and dhaniya powder, mix well and continue till you begin to see the oil separating out of the mixture.
Add the curd and mix well and cook for about 2 min
Now add the rajma beans, about 2 cups water (or more depending on your taste) and cook till rajma is soft. This is about 7-8 min.
Mash some of the rajma like you do in pav bhaji.
Add the butter on top.
Garnish with coriander and serve with Rice.