Saturday, May 31, 2008

Gobhi Ke Parathe

Gobhi ke parathe and Gajar ka halwa are two dishes immensely loved in Bollywood movies. Well, we, the mere mortals love it too. ;-) I already blogged about Broccoli paratha which was actually based on this recipe of gobhi ka paratha. I will write the recipe again, since this actually is the original one! :-)

Gobhi Ke Parathe
Cauliflower Flatbread from Punjab


Oil for shallow frying

For stuffing
1 small head of cauliflower, grated
/2 tsp salt
1 green chili, minced (optional)
1/2 tsp red chili powder
1/2 tsp kitchen king masala
1 tsp ginger, grated
1/2 tsp owa/ajwain/thymol seeds/ajowan/ajmo
1 tsp cumin seeds/jeera
1 small onion, chopped
1 tsp dry pomegranate seeds/anardaana, coarsely crushed
2 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped

For paratha
2 cups wheat flour
salt to taste
1 tsp oil

Method -

1. Grate the cauliflower. Sprinkle salt and set aside for 15 minutes. Squeeze water and drain the cauliflower completely.

2. Mix all the ingredients for the stuffing. Check for salt. Set aside.

3. Knead a dough for paratha using wheat flour, salt, water and oil. Cover and keep aside for 20-30 minutes.

4. Make a ball of a dough. Roll into a small round. Put the stuffing on top.

5. Fold and dredge in some flour. Roll into a thick paratha.

6. Shallow fry on a hot tawa/pan/griddle adding oil per your taste till brown spots appear on both the sides.

7. Serve hot with yogurt and pickles.

Note -

1. I used food processor for grating.

2.You can increase or decrease the spices per your own preference.

This post is my contribution to Srivalli's Roti Mela: celebration of Indian flatbreads.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Soybean Usal

Soybean chi Usal for Click

Growing up, my first encounter with soybean was strawberry flavored soy milk marketed by Godrej. But, later having discovered the benefits of soybean, I have started using it in my cooking whenever possible. If you like the nutty flavor of soybean, you will like this usal else substitute some other beans like lima beans, white peas or chana.

Soybean Chi Usal
Soybean Stir fry
1 cup dry soybeans, soaked overnight,
1 tsp chili powder (optional)
1 tsp jaggery
salt to taste

1 tsp oil
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
7-9 curry leaves (optional)
1 small onion, minced
1 small tomato, chopped (optional)
1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
1 tsp goda masala

1 tbsp cilantro/coriander leaves, chopped
1 tsp coconut

1. Heat oil. Add all the ingredients for tempering. Meanwhile, pressure cook soybean adding water till 2- 3 whistles.

2. Saute till onion is soft.

3. Add soybean along with the cooking liquid, chili powder, jaggery, salt.

4. Bring to boil. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes. If you want dry usal, simmer more till water is completely evaporated.

5. Garnish with cilantro & coconut.

6. Serve with lemon wedges on side.

First picture - Soybean chi usal is my entry to Click : Beans & lentils at Jugalbandi.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Gujarati Kadhi

My husband's maternal grandmother used to make white kadhi and paternal grandmother makes yellow kadhi. Both kadhis are made in Gujarati homes but sometimes, as per family preference, one kadhi is made more often than the other. So this one, we refer to as Naniji's Kadhi. The yellow one is called Dadiji's kadhi. :-)

Naniji's Kadhi
1 cup plain yogurt
1 1/2 cup water
2 tbsp besan
salt to taste
1 tsp - 1 tbsp sugar (decide your own preference!)
1/2 tsp ginger-green chilies paste

1 tsp oil
1/2 tsp ghee
2-3 cloves
2 cardamoms
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds
1 sprig curry leaves
3-4 round dry red chilies/boriya chilies

1. Churn yogurt, water and besan and make buttermilk without leaving any besan lumps.
2. Heat oil and ghee in a thick bottomed saucepan.
3. Add all the ingredients for tempering.
4. As they start spluttering, slowly add buttermilk mixture.
5. Bring it to boil. Add salt, sugar & chili-ginger paste.
6. Simmer for few minutes while stirring with the ladle.
7. Serve hot with khichdi or pullao.

Note -
1. Generally, kadhi is made fresh just before serving. Making it and re-heating it later is not recommended.
2. For the traditional taste, use only dollops of ghee for tempering!
3. If boriya chilies are not available, use 2 red, dry chilies, halved.

Manipuri Ooti from Anthony's blog for RCI

Bhags has chosen North East India for the RCI event this month. Thanks, Lakshmi for this wonderful RCI event & thanks, Bhags for selecting this beautiful region. This event has given me a very unique opportunity to learn about this region. I wish my geography teacher was this creative. Geography wouldn't have been my least favorite subject then. ;-)
I don't think I have any of the recipes in my collection for this region. So the contribution to this event will be just pictures from me as the recipe credit will be given to the creator/blog owner. I asked Bhags if this would work for this event! I would like to cook at least one recipe per state that makes North-East India region. Let's see. My research is still on!

Region - Manipur
Blog by - Anthony
Blog Name - Bachelor Cooking
Thanks, Anthony for blogging about this wonderful curry.

Blog by - Anthony

This post is my contribution to RCI:North East India by Bhags at Crazy Curry.

Regional cuisines of India (RCI) event is started by Lakshmi of Veggie Cuisine

I have also contributed "Pa Chao" for the same event for the state - Arunachal Pradesh - the land of the rising sun.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Chicken 65 - My way!

I probably read Linda Goodman's "Sun Signs" and "Love Signs" more seriously than any of my textbooks when I was in college. My friends and I used to have serious discussions about the books - especially "Love Signs" and our respective crushes! This book "Love Signs" has all the permutations & combinations of sunsigns for the compatibility, friendship & love. Man, we used to be so serious! No wonder, they call teenagers crazy!! As my crush gradually progressed from crush/love/boyfriend/fiance/husband, my interest in lovesigns too proportionally decreased. :-)These days, I do not even think once , not even read any fortune. But still, those were sweet days and in spite of crazy girly discussions with my friends, there was a lot of innocence. So I want to salute those crazy, zany, carefree days which I can look back with amusement and just have a very good laugh at my own cost.

Spicy Tasty Team has come up with this unique event "Fortune Cooking" where they have assigned some veg/nonveg ingredients to the sunsigns and you can cook up something for your selected sunsign. My ingredient is chicken and sunsign that I have selected is "Gemini".

More information about Gemini, here.

Now about this Chicken 65. This is my husband's favorite chicken curry. I was planning to make Tandoori chicken. After marinating the chicken, next day, I was too bored to grill it. So just decided to saute it instead. I thought of adding some onions too. It came out well and reminded us of chicken65 served in a wonderful restaurant here. So next time, I also threw in some curry leaves, cashew nuts and jalapenos because I have seen them in our restaurant version. Thus, my version of Chicken65 was born.

Chicken 65 - My way anyway!
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, rinsed, cut into small pieces

1/2 cup yogurt
2 heaped tbsp Tandoori Masala (I used Shan)
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground garlic

1 tbsp oil
1 small onion, sliced
2 jalapeno peppers, sliced
7-9 cashew nuts
2 sprigs of curry leaves

Lemon wedges

1. Mix all the ingredients for the marinade. Marinate the chicken & cover tightly. Refrigerate overnight.
2. Heat oil. Add curry leaves, onions. Saute till onion is golden brown.
3. Add peppers, cashew nuts. Fry for 5 minutes.
4. Add marinated chicken along with marinade. Saute for 5 minutes.
5. Cover and let it cook till done on a slow flame. It may take about 20 - 30 minutes.
6. When the chicken is cooked, remove the lid. If there is moisture, simmer till all the liquid is evaporated and the masala clings to the chicken.
7. Serve with lemon wedges and Naans.

Note -
1. Shan Masala has salt. So do not add any additional salt. If using any other brand, check if it has salt or not and adjust accordingly.
2. You can use more or less masala per your own spice tolerence.

This post is my contribution to The Fortune Cooking Event at Spicy Tasty.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Kobi chi Bhuji/ Cabbage Pakoda

This is the way my mom makes kobi chi bhuji. I served them with peach chutney for a party sometime back. These pakodas were devoured instantly. Since there were a lot of American friends, I kept it very mellow & peach chutney added a nice fruity contrast.

Mom adds a spoonful of hot oil in the batter instead of baking soda. We call it "Mohan" in Marathi & "MoaN" in Gujarati.

Kobichi Bhuji
Cabbage Fritters
4 cups finely shredded cabbage
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup besan
1 tbsp rice flour
salt to taste
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1/2 tsp mild chili powder or paprika
1 green chili minced (optional) - if you want that extra heat!
1 tsp hot oil or Mohan or MoaN
more salt as needed
Oil for deep frying

0. Sprinkle salt over shredded cabbage. Set aside for 1/2 hour.
1. Mix all the ingredients to make the batter.
2. Make sure that there are no lumps of besan remaining. Adjust for salt if needed
3. Heat oil in a kadai/wok.
4. Deep fry small balls till they are crispy.
5. Keep on the paper towel to absorb extra oil.
6. Serve hot with chutney or ketchup of your choice.

Note -
1. You can add more chili powder or chilies for the spicier version.
2. Mom adds hot oil & rice flour for making bhujis fluffy and crispy respectively.
3. Although, 4 cups may seem to be a huge amount of shredded cabbage, it wilts after salt is added and becomes small in quantity.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Capsicum Pickle

This is our traditional, family recipe. My mom-in-law uses this sambhaar for making impromptu vegetable pickles.

Dholar Marcha na Sambhaar
Instant Bell Peppers Pickles
1 cup bell peppers, sliced

1/2 cup carrots, peeled and sliced
2 tbsp sambhaar masala/Pickle masala

1 tbsp mustard oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds

1/2 tsp asafoetida

2 tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed

1. Heat oil. Add all the ingredients for tempering.
2. As the mustard seeds start spluttering, add chopped bell peppers.
3. Saute for about 15 seconds and take off the heat. The peppers should remain crunchy. Let it cool completely.
4. Add the sambhaar masala /Pickle Masala and lemon juice.
5. Serve immediately.

1. This pickle needs to be consumed immediately.
2. It can be refrigerated up to 1 day in the fridge.
3. Sambhaar masala already has salt. So do not add more.

This post is my contribution to VOW-JFI - Bell Peppers' at Pooja's Creative Pooja.

VOW event is started by Pooja of Creative Pooja.

JFI event is started by Indira of Mahanandi.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Thanks, Uma & my vacation

Look, what I got!! My dear friend, Uma has awarded me "Good Chat Blog Award". Thanks so much Uma, for chatting with me and considering me a good chatter too!!;-)

Now, it makes sense to forward this award to my friends with whom I have chatted through emails/Yahoo chat and not just the comments in the blog. So here you go, buddies -thanks for your support, suggestions, feedback, & friendship.


Also, thanks to Aditi & Sukanya for passing yummy blog award. I have proudly displayed it in my side bar. Thanks girls, for thinking about me.

Lastly, I am off on a vacation for next 2 weeks. I know deadlines for most of the wonderful blog events are coming up. So I have scheduled most of my posts for next few days. They will appear as I am gone & I can still meet the deadline. So there maybe even more typos or spelling errors than usual as I am writing this in a hurry!!!:-D Probably there will be some delay in moderating the comments. & even more delay in replying the emails. Also, I may not be able to visit your wonderful blogs, but that doesn't mean I am ignoring you. I will be back soon.
Take care & Enjoy!!

Vada nu Loat

Vada Nu Loat


2 cups rice

1 cup Toor daal

1/2 cup wheat

1/2 cup mung daal

1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds


1. Roast all the ingredients separately till they change the color.

2. Let it cool down.

3. Grind to a coarse powder.

4. Store in an airtight container.

Mango Milkshake

She said "Kuchh aam ka ho jaye!" So here it is, dear Purnima, - just because "you" said so!!:-)

Mango Milkshake

Mango Smoothie -Indian style
1 cup mango pulp - freshly squeezed or from the can
sugar to taste (optional)
2 cups milk (preferably organic - 2%)

1. Whirl in a blender or use churner.

2. Refrigerate.
3. Serve chilled on a hot, summer day.

Note -
1. You can add 1 cup vanilla ice-cream and 1 cup milk for a richer & creamier version.

Some more mango mania from this blog -
1. Mango Lassi
2. Mango Shikran
3. Mango Kulfi
4. Mango Cheesecake
5. Amrakhand
6. Mango Ambrosia
7. Mango Pal Payasam

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Kheema Toast Sandwich

I don't think, it can get easier than this. My mom used to grab any available vegetable stir fry and stuff it between two bread slices, add a dot of butter and toast in her sandwich maker. Remember, that would go right on the gas/stove and you have to flip it to get evenly toasted/grilled on both sides? I used to love it when she used to stuff some aloo paratha stuffing or kheema between the slices. Yum!! In the picture above, I used some kheema stuffing, but any other stuffing of your choice can as well be used.
Kheema Toast Sandwich
4 slices of bread
butter or olive oil to grease the butter
1 recipe kheema or alu paratha stuffing or any subzi
1. Grease bread slices lightly.
2. Stuff the kheema or any desired stuffing inside.
3. Place in the sandwich maker so the greased slices are out.
4. Toast till done.
5. Serve with ketchup.
Note -
1. I used the electric sandwich maker.

This toast sandwich is headed to Anupama's for her wonderful sandwich festival.

Mutton Roll - Jara Chakh ke dekho

Monginis mutton roll used to be my favorite. Remember that TV commercial - "Monginis, jara chakh ke dekho!" Last time, when I went back to India, I was disappointed to know that they have stopped making the mutton roll! :-( Did I gobble so many mutton rolls that when I left the country they just decided to stop making them?;-)

Oh well, so here I am making mutton/chicken rolls. It's simple. Use your favorite recipe of kheema and stuff it in the hotdog rolls. I used whole grain wheat hotdog rolls just to get some fiber too. Gudiya squished the roll a bit out of curiosity so you see that in the picture!

Monginis style Mutton/chicken Roll (Serves 6)
1 recipe Kheema
6 Hot dog rolls

1. Stuff kheema generously inside the hotdog rolls.
2. Serve fresh

Note -
1. Make sure that the hotdog rolls are at the room temperature.
2. You can use any of the Kheema recipe of your choice. I meant to blog about a few more kheema recipes that I make. I will do so in the near future. Here, I used the same kheema that I used to make Rajasthani khad.
3. Some of you emailed me - where to get chicken kheema/mince in US. Though I have replied back, I thought of writing here, so anyone who wants to know may benefit. I buy my chicken mince from Whole foods. They have it in their meat section. If they do not display, you can request the butcher, and he will do it for you in about 5 minutes. You can request this service in any of the supermarkets.

This sandwich is going to Anupama's for her delicious Sandwich festival.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Archy's Kosambari for MBP: Salads/Soups

I made Archy's Kosambari for MBP - Salads/Soups this time. I have made this kosambari before, but adding carrots was a new idea for me. It added a nice color and nutrition too. Thanks Archy, for this wonderful recipe.

My changes -
1. I forgot to add coconut!
2. I also added some chopped green chilies.

Recipe Source -
This post is my contribution to MBP - Soups/Salads hosted by Raaga.
MBP event is started by Coffee of The Spice Cafe.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Kudamilagai Poriyal

Bell Pepper is one of the vegetables that is always available in the supermarket here. So it's not a surprise that bell pepper is almost always on our weekly menu. I try to add variety by cooking it differently every time. I found a totally different recipe in Mrs. Chandra Padmnabhan's "Dakshin". So I had to try it. I have tweaked the recipe a little to suit our palette. Gudiya just loves this poriyal. We call it "Traffic light poriyal" since it has all the colors of the traffic light! This name is inspired from the frozen Traffic light bell peppers strips available at Whole foods.

Kudamilagai Poriyal
Inspired by "Dakshin" by Mrs. Chandra Padmanabhan
3 bell peppers, chopped
3 tbsp plain yogurt
2 tsp sambar powder
salt to taste
1 tsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1.2 tsp chana daal
1/2 tsp urad daal
1 red chili, broken
few curry leaves
1. Chop the bell peppers into bite sized pieces.
2. Add yogurt to the chopped peppers and keep aside for 15 minutes.
3. Heat oil in a wok/kadai. Add all the ingredients for tempering.
4. As daals start changing colors, add bell pepper mixture.
5. Cover and let it cook for about 9 minutes.
6. Add salt and sambar powder. Let it simmer for 5 more minutes.
7. Serve with chapati.
1. More oil or water is not necessary as yogurt adds the necessary moisture.
2. Multi-colored peppers are not mandatory. Just green peppers can be used as well.

This post is my contribution to VOW-JFI - Bell Peppers' at Pooja's Creative Pooja.
VOW event is started by Pooja of Creative Pooja.
JFI event is started by Indira of Mahanandi.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Thanks, Trupti & Purnima!

My friends, Trupti & Purnima have awarded me this "Rocking Girl" Award. Blush! Blush! I think all the girls (& a few boys too!) deserve this rocking award. Thanks so much, Trupti & Purnima! You are very sweet.
I do think all of you deserve this award. Many of you have already received this award. So I will pass this award to -

MW Moong Sprouts Muthiya

This is our traditional family recipe, which I converted to use in the microwave for Srivalli's MEC: Steamed Dishes.

Fangavela Mag Na Muthiya
Moong Sprouts Steamed Dumplings
1/4 cup wheat flour
2 tbsp besan
2 tbsp plain yogurt
1 tsp oil
salt to taste
1 tsp sugar (optional)
Grind to a coarse paste
1 1/2 cup Moong Sprouts
1" Ginger
2 green chilies
1/2 Tbsp sesame seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1/2 tsp turmeric powder

2 tsp oil
1 red chili, broken
1 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1 tsp sesame seeds

Garnish (optional)
1 tbsp chopped cilantro/coriander leaves
1 tsp freshly scraped coconut

1. Grind moong sprouts with the other ingredients without adding any water.

2. Add flours, yogurt, salt, sugar - if using, and oil to make a not too stiff and not too soft dough. Add more wheat flour if necessary.

3. Roll into logs of same shape & size.

4. Add water in a microwave cooker. Place steaming rack on top. Place moong logs 3-4 at a time.

5. Microwave for 4 - 5 minutes. Let it stand for 1 minute.

6. When you take the logs/muthiyas out, they should be firm to touch. Let them cool down.

7. Repeat the process for the remaining logs/muthiya.

8. When all the muthiyas have cooled down, cut them into small pieces.

9. Add tempering and garnish on top.

Note -
1. Instead of adding the tempering on top, you can also add the tempering in a wok. and saute the muthiyas till crunchy.
2. You can also shallow or deep fry steamed muthiyas before adding the tempering. But I prefer steamed muthiyas for the health benefits.
3. Microwave cooking times vary. Please use your own judgement.
4. You can steam these muthiyas in the pressure cooker or steamer, if you do not wish to use microwave.
5. You can also add more flours in the above recipe like bajra, jowar, maize, ragi (about 1 tbsp each or so) to make multi-grain muthiyas.

This post is my contribution to Srivalli's MEC:Steamed Dishes.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Broken Wheat Paratha

What do you do when you discover some 1/4 cup of broken wheat/daliya in the pantry? It's too little to make saanja or fada ni khichdi. Well, I headed directly to and put the ingredient "broken wheat" in the recipe by ingredient search. I found the recipe only for the gold memebers which I am not, so I got the ingredients but not the method. So I used my own imagination. The result was delicious broken wheat paratha - which Tarlaji calls "Lazeez Paratha". Since the method described here is mine, I will just refer to it as broken wheat paratha, instead of the Lazeez one!:-D

Broken Wheat Paratha
Inspired by Lazeez Paratha by Tarla Dalal

1/4 cup broken wheat/bulgur wheat/dalia

2 tbsp chana daal

1 cup whole wheat flour

2 tbsp besan

1 tsp ginger-green chili paste

4 tbsp chopped cilantro/coriander leaves

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1/2 tsp red chili powder

salt to taste

1 tsp oil

For roasting

Oil for roasting parathas

1. Pressure cook broken wheat and chana daal adding 1 cup water. Let it cool completely.
2. Mix with all the ingredients. Knead into a dough. Add more wheat flour if needed. Do not add water since there will be plenty moisture in the boiled dalia-chana daal mush.
3. Cover and keep aside for 15-20 minutes.

4. Make balls of equal sizes and roll into parathas.

5. Roast on both sides till brown spots appear. Use oil sparingly.

6. Keep in an aluminum foil or clean, cotton napkin till ready to use

1. I have added more ingredients than Tarlaji's version to suit our palette.

These parathas are going to Srivalli's Roti Mela: celebration of Indian flatbreads.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Mango Shikran

In Marathi, Shikran means banana and milk mixed together with sugar and a pinch of cardamom powder. In Gujarati, the same shikran becomes "doodh-kela" - in what-you-hear-is-what-you-get manner!!But during the mango season, my mom substitutes mango instead of banana. and then it becomes royal Ambyache shikran.

Ambyache Shikran
Mango Milk Maharashtrian way
1 ripe mango, chopped
2 cups milk
sugar (if needed, optional)
A pinch of cardamom powder

1. Mix everything together with a spoon.
2. Refrigerate.
3. Serve chilled on a hot summer day.

Note -
1. Do not use blender for the authentic taste. The mangoes need to remain chopped. This is not mango milkshake.
2. If you replace milk with coconut milk, it becomes a Konkani delicacy - Mango Rasayana. But use jaggery instead of sugar - if using- for the authentic taste.

Though it was never served as a breakfast, I think fruit and milk is not a bad idea for breakfast. What do you think?

So this is my entry to Arundathi's WBB - Mango Madness.
WBB is started by Dr. Nandita of Saffron Trail.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Roundgourd Bhaji

Dhemse - Chana Daal Bhaji
4 Round gourds/Tinda/Dhemse, rinsed, sliced
2 tbsp chana daal
salt to taste
A pinch of sugar to taste

2 tsp oil
1 red chili, broken
1 green chili, slit
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1 tbsp coconut
1 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped
1 tbsp lemon juice

1. Soak chana daal in water for 1 hour.
2. Heat oil in a kadai or wok.
3. Add all the ingredients for tempering.
4. Add drained chana daal. Add 1 tbsp water. Cover with a lid and add water on the lid.
5. Let it cook for 10 minutes.
6. Now add roundgourd pieces
7. Cover and let it cook till done.
8. Add salt & sugar.
9. Garnish with coconut & cilantro.
10. While serving squeeze little lemon juice
Note -
1. Dhemse is more popularly known as Tinda.
2. I used frozen variety.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Boondi Ki Kheer or Rus Boondi

Let's savor the Rajasthani sweets now. It's a great way of using your leftover Motichoor/soft boondi ladoos too.

Update - I recently came to know from my MIL that Gujaratis make this kheer too. It goes by the name Rus Boondi.

Boondi Ki Kheer/Rus Boondi
2 Motichoor Ladoos/soft boondi laddoos
4 cups milk (Preferably organic whole or 2%)
1/2 cup evaporated milk

1/2 tsp freshly ground cardamom seeds

1. Bring milk to boil. Reduce the flame. Simmer for 10 minutes.
2. Add evaporated milk.
3. Crumble motichoor ladoos by hand and add to the milk.
4. Simmer for another half an hour till the desired consistency is reached.
5. Garnish with freshly ground cardamom seeds.
6. Refrigerate & serve it chilled.

Note -
1. You can also use sweet boondi instead of motichoor ladoos.
2. If you prefer, you can add more sugar per your taste. But if using ladoos, they already have ghee and sugar so additional sugar, probably may not be required.

This post is my entry to Easy Craft's Think Spice - Cardamom event.
Think Spice event is started by Sunita of Sunita's World.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Kutchi Dabeli

Kutchi Dabeli is also called as Double Roti. It is a spicy-tangy-sweet-crunchy-fruity sandwich. The bread is like a small dinner roll type bread. Dabeli that I had eaten in Gujarat, had shallow-fried bread but in Mumbai, we used to get it just bread (i.e.without frying). A dear friend introduced dabeli to me when I was in college. You need to have a special blend called dabeli masala to make the stuffing. and it also has grapes or pomegranates, sev, onions, spicy peanuts, along with boiled potatoes and sweet-sour-spicy chutneys. It's really tasty.

Here's how I make it.

Recipe Inspiration-

Dabeli or Double Roti
Dabeli Masala (
1 red chili
1 tsp coriander seeds
1/2" cinnamon
2 cloves
1/4 tsp cumin seeds

1 cup boiled mashed potato
1 tsp oil
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp dabeli masala (more or less per your taste)
1 tbsp lemon juice

12 small dinner rolls/paav, roasted/toasted on pan without oil

few green grapes, horizontally cut
1 tbsp pomegranate seeds
1 tbsp spicy, salty peanuts
1 small onion, minced
1 tbsp nylon sev
1 tsp grated fresh coconut
1 tbsp chopped cilantro/coriander leaves
chili-garlic chutney or sauce (per requirement)
multi-purpose chutney ( per requirement)

1. Heat oil. Add turmeric powder & dabeli masala. Add mashed potatoes & salt to taste.
2. Saute and make sure it is nicely mixed together. Set aside. Let it cool down.
3. Add multipurpose chutney, lemon juice. chili garlic chutney and spread the potato mixture in a deep thali/plate.
4. Add all the ingredients for garnish on top.
5. Just before serving, slit the pavs. Toast them lightly on tawa/frying pan.
6. Stuff the dabeli stuffing generously. Add more garnish if required.
7. Serve immediately.

Note -
1. Dabeliwalas in Mumbai keep the stuffing ready in their huge thalis and stuff it with a spoon in the paav. I used the same method instead of Tarlaji's making different portions for each bread. You can follow any method that you prefer.
2. Depending on the season/availability, dabeliwalas used to have fresh pomegranate seeds or grapes halves in the garnish.
3. You can substitute pavbhaji masala for dabeli masala.
4. Please note that "Kutchi" in the name of this sandwich refers to Kutch, Gujarat.

This post is my contribution to the Sandwich Festival - 2008 at Anupama's Food-n-more.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Tribute & Thanks

I was shocked to read about the serial blasts in the beautiful, historic city of Jaipur. I would like to pay my respects to the innocent victims who lost their lives, and condolences to their families. Let there be peace in this world!

Now, in my blogging life, I got some good news to share.My friends, Purnima & Asha have passed on this "You make my day!" award. Thanks to you both dear friends, for visiting my blog regularly, leaving sweet comments and encouraging me. Actually, you make my day, everyday and also, all of you who are reading this post, also make my day. I want to thank all of you who visit me and encourage me. Also to those, who write wonderful posts and keep me drooling. You make my day too.

Passing the award is the difficult part. But per rules, I can't give the award to all. I am giving this award to following five fantastic bloggers -


Thanks for being my friends!

Bharwa Bhindi

Okra or Bhindi is one of my most favorite vegetables. I learned following okra recipe from my friend, Shruti.

Bharwa Bhindi
1 lb okra/lady's fingers/bhindi/bhendi/bhinda

1 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1/4 tsp turmeric powder

For stuffing
2 tbsp besan
2 tbsp ground roasted, unsalted peanuts
1 tbsp sesame seeds
1 tbsp poppy seeds
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
salt to taste

1 tbsp chopped cilantro/coriander leaves (optional)

1. Mix all the ingredients for stuffing and keep aside.
2. Wash, dry okra. Cut the tips off on both the sides. Cut the okra into two. Slit the okra, making sure it still remains whole.
3. Stuff the mixture in it.
4. Heat oil in a kadai/wok - preferably nonstick.
5. Add the ingredients for tempering.
6. As the mustard seeds start spluttering, add stuffed okra and any remaining mixture.
7. let it cook on lowest heat. Stir in between.
8. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves, if using.

This post is my contribution to RCI: Rajasthan - Flavours of the Desert.
RCI event is started by
Lakshmi of VeggieCuisine.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Mirchi chi upasachi Bhaji

Our lunchbox used to be always poli-bhaji (chapatis & vegetables). Sometimes, especially in the month of Shravan, my mom used to fast on Mondays. But instead of giving us lunchbox of sabudana khichdi, mom still managed to pack a flatbead and upwas-friendly bhaji. The recipe given below is one of the many bhaajis mom used to make for upwas special lunchbox. Oh, and the flatbread? She used to make rajgiryachi poli or dushmi. I will blog about them some other time.

Bhoplya Mirchi chi Upasachi Bhaji
2 green bell peppers, diced
1 potato, peeled & diced
Salt to taste
2 tbsp roasted, unsalted peanuts, crushed coarsely (Daanyache koot)

2 tsp oil/ghee
1 tsp cumin seeds

lemon wedges (optional)
1 tsp freshly grated coconut (optional)
1 tsp chopped cilantro/coriander leaves (optional)

1. Heat oil/ghee in a wok/kadai.
2. Add cumin seeds.
3. As they splutter, add chopped bell peppers and potatoes.
4. Saute for 1 minute. Lower the gas. Let it cook without any lid on top. Do not let it burn. Keep an eye.
5. When the vegetables are cooked, stir in salt and crushed peanuts.
6. Saute 5 more minutes. Garnish with cilantro/coriander leaves & coconut, if using.
7. Serve with lemon wedges & Rajgiryachi dushmi (Recipe coming soon!)

Note -
1. Make sure that vegetables are cooked but they should not be too mushy. The potatoes still need to retain their diced form.

2. You can reduce the quantity of cumin seeds, if you find it too much. Since there is no other spice in this recipe, my mom uses it more than usual.

3. Since this bhaaji is with bell pepper, there is no additional chilies. But if you like your food hot, you can add green chilies along with cumin seeds.

4. Many people follow different rules for their upwas/farali cusine food. Gujaratis do not add salt in upwas dishes but add rock salt/sindhav/saindhav. Mostly oil is not used but ghee is preferred. Many people do not add cilantro. These are just my observations.I am not an authority on this topic. So do, what you like or prefer. :-)

This post is my contribution to VOW-JFI - Bell Peppers' at Pooja's Creative Pooja.
VOW event is started by
Pooja of Creative Pooja.
JFI event is started by
Indira of Mahanandi.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Serving crazy with curry - Cajun Shrimp Biryani

Meena of Hooked on Heat, has created a wonderful blog event - Cook's book club where you read a book and come up with the recipe. Thanks Meena, for this unique blog event. The books that she had selected are readily available in the local library. So this month, we are reading "Serving crazy with curry" by Amulya Malladi. It's not really a big book. So in spite of busy schedules, it can be read pretty quickly.

The protagonist of the book is Devi, one of the two daughters of the Venturi family. Dad, Avinash is an ex- army man from India, who is now settled in USA. He is a successful entrepreneur who is now semi-retired. Mother, Saroj is a homemaker. Her both daughter find her extremely judgemental & interfering. The elder daughter Shobha enjoys a coveted job in a reputable firm and her husband, Girish is a professor. Saroj's mother - Vasu is a respected doctor from Indian military (now retired) and shares a wonderful relationship with her granddaughters. She is a very strong lady who has lived life on her own terms even though she belongs to the previous generation. Devi goes through some traumatic experiences and decides to completely shut herself off from her family. She stops talking altogether. but she discovers a new medium to express her feelings - cooking! She is not a cook or never was interested in cooking. but she now emotes through cooking. If she is happy she makes wonderful desserts, if she is angry she makes hot, spicy and pungent food! This is something I enjoyed more than the actual storyline. I felt the story was too predictable. I knew where it was going from the beginning.

Though I didn't like the story, this book has received some rave reviews here , here & here. So give it a shot.

Devi makes some wonderful culinary delights like semolina-hazelnut ladoos, Cajun Shrimp Biryani & many more. I was especially impressed by her Cajun Shrimp Biryani. I tweaked the recipe to suit our family needs/moods.

Devi's Cajun Shrimp Biryani
Inspired by Devi of "Serving Crazy with Curry" by Amulya Malladi
1 cup basmati rice, rinsed & drained
salt to taste
2 cups water

1 tbsp olive oil
1 bay leaf
2 cloves
2-3 black peppercorn
2 cardamoms
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 small onion sliced
1 small tomato, chopped

1 cup prawns/shrimp
1/2 tsp garlic pulp
1/4 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp black pepper, crushed
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne
1/4 tsp onion powder
A dash of Worcestershire sauce
salt to taste

1 tbsp chopped cilantro/coriander leaves
lemon wedges

1. Heat oil in a pressure cooker. Add khada masala & turmeric powder.
2. Stir in onions. Saute till golden brown. Add tomato & stir fry for 2 minutes.
3. Add drained basmati rice. Saute for 2 minutes.
4. Add water & salt to taste. Pressure cook for 2 whistles. Set aside. Let it cool down.
5. Heat oil in another pan. Saute marinated prawns till they are cooked.
6. Mix in cooked prawns with rice, without breaking the rice.
7. Reheat the cajun biryani for 10 minutes by giving indirect heat i.e. keeping a tawa on the gas and putting vessel on the tawa. Let the gas be lowest.

1. Devi didn't give the exact measurements. Her cookbook is more of her emotional journal (or outburst!). The above measurements are mine and are not exactly similar to Devi's recipe.

This post is my contribution to Cook's Book Club - Serving Crazy with curry at Meena's Hooked on heat.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Mango Pal Payasam

New issue of cooking light. Chef Raghavan Iyer is giving tribute to his mom, Late Mrs. Ganga Iyer with this recipe. A must try!!:-)

Recipe Source -

Chef - Raghavan Iyer

My Modifications -
I halved the recipe.

Verdict -
Super duper hit!!

Calorie Information -
CALORIES 212(26% from fat); FAT 6.1g (sat 3.5g,mono 1.5g,poly 0.4g); PROTEIN 7.9g; CHOLESTEROL 21mg; CALCIUM 262mg; SODIUM 168mg; FIBER 1g; IRON 0.2mg; CARBOHYDRATE 32.2g

Happy Mother's Day!!
I love you, Mumma.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Black Beans Paratha

After seeing Gudiya enjoying "Rajma Paratha", I decided to sneak in black beans next time. and made this Black Beans Paratha. The ingredients and method were more or less similar to the Rajma Paratha. While I was roasting this paratha, the aroma reminded me of Maharashtrian Thalipeeth.

Here's what I did -

Black Beans Paratha

1 can black beans, rinsed & drained
1 tbsp fire-roasted green peppers
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp Green paste - cilantro+green chili+ginger+garlic (ue more or less per your taste)
1/2 small onion, minced
2 cups wheat flour (or as needed)
2 tbsp besan
salt to taste
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp coriander-cumin seed powder
1 tsp oil
Wheat flour for rolling paratha
oil for shallow frying

1. Mash black beans using a fork.
2. Mix all the ingredients to knead a dough.
3. Cover and keep it aside for 15 minutes
4. Make equal sized balls. Roll into parathas or rotis.
5. Shallow fry on a pan or griddle till brown spots appear on both sides. Use oil as needed.

Notes -
1. I generally first mix the ingredients without adding any water. Then I add water on need basis. Also after the dough is formed, I add 1 tsp oil. So the dough looks shiny.
2. When shallow frying, I generally use a few drops of oil only on one side of the paratha. Use oil according to your own preference.
3. Please note that black beans that I have used here, are not whole black urad. Black beans are used extensively in Mexican cooking.

These parathas are going straight to Srivalli's Roti Mela: celebration of Indian flatbreads.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Marcha Bataka nu Shaak

My aunt makes this absolutely delicious "shaak". Here's her recipe.

Marcha Bataka nu Shaak
Bell Pepper stir fry - Gujarati style
2 bell peppers, sliced like french fries
1 potato, peeled, sliced like french fries
1 firm tomato, sliced like french fries
1 small onion, sliced like french fries
1 heaped tsp coriander-cumin seed powder
1/4 tsp chili powder
1 tbsp jaggery
salt to taste

2 tsp oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1. Heat oil in a nonstick pan.
2. Add mustard seeds, asafoetida, turmeric powder.
3. As the mustard seeds splutter, add onions. Saute for 5 minutes.
4. Now add the rest of the vegetables. Add coriander-cumin seeds powder and chili powder.
5. Saute till all the vegetables are cooked.
6. Add salt and jaggery. Cook till jaggery is melted.
7. Serve with phulka or rotla.

Note -
1. The jaggery and coriander -cumin seed powder add a unique flavor to this simple stir fry. Use less jaggery if you do not like very sweet vegetables.

This post is my contribution to VOW-JFI - Bell Peppers' at Pooja's Creative Pooja.

VOW event is started by Pooja of Creative Pooja.

JFI event is started by Indira of Mahanandi.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Mango Rasayana

A sweet that is a must in Konkani kitchens during the Mango season.

Mango Rasayana
Mango Sweet
1 Alphonso mango, peeled, diced
1 1/2 cup coconut milk
1/2 - 1 tbsp jaggery (as required based on the sweetness of mango)
2 cardamoms, freshly crushed

1. Mix all the ingredients together.
2. Serve chilled.

Note -
1. You can make a similar rasayana with bananas too.

Mango Ambrosia

This is a family practice at my home. My grandmothers did it. My great aunts, aunts, of course, my mom - they all do it. and now I did it too. When you get the first box of mangoes, choose the finest looking, best mango, and offer it to God for the Naivedya. It is something like thanksgiving for the bounty. After being blessed, the mango is cut, and first given to the Gods of the house i.e. kids. and then the whole family enjoys it. So I did the same. This was our prasad.

Chopped mango, sprinkled with some cardamom powder and a fresh mint leaf for the color contrast for my grand photography!!:-D

Today's Akshay Tritiya. So sharing this God's blessings with you all. May God bless you all with peace and happiness...

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Kochin Jhinga

Recipe Source -

Chef - Raghavan Iyer

Calorie information -

CALORIES 360(21% from fat); FAT 8.4g (sat 2.3g,mono 2.5g,poly 2.3g); PROTEIN 38.3g; CHOLESTEROL 259mg; CALCIUM 118mg; SODIUM 735mg; FIBER 1.3g; IRON 5.8mg; CARBOHYDRATE 31.2g

Panchmel Khichdi

This is my friend, Shruti's recipe.

Panchmel Khichdi
1 cup Basmati Rice
3 tbsp Toor daal
3 tbsp moong daal
3 tbsp masoor daal
3tbsp chana daal
3 tbsp urad daal
salt to taste

1 tbsp oil
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
1 bayleaf/tejpatta/tamalpatra
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
A pinch of asafoetida

Grind to a fine paste
1/4 tsp cumin seeds
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
2 black peppercorn
1" cinnamon
2 cloves
2 cardamoms
1/2 tsp garam masala
1 tbsp cilantro/coriander leaves
1/2 onion
1 red chili
1" ginger
2 cloves garlic

Ghee (Optional) and/or
Plain yogurt

1. Wash and soak rice and daal in water. Soak aside for 30 minutes.
2. Heat oil in a pressure cooker
3. Add cumin seeds, bay leaf & sliced onions.
4. Add ground paste. saute for 5 minutes.
5. Add drained daal & rice mixture. Saute for 5 minutes.
6. Add 3 1/2 to 4 cups water & salt to taste.
7. Pressure cook for 3-4 whistles.
8. Serve hot panchmel khichdi with ghee.

Note -
1. Take daal to measure 1 cup. So if after taking 3 tbsp of each daal , add more daal of your choice, to measure upto 1 cup. Remember 4 tbsp = 1/4 Cup. You can increase or decrease daal-rice ratio per your taste. I generally keep it 1:1.
2. For a traditional rich taste, use ghee instead of oil for tempering.
3. Use more or less water for cooiing, depending on the desired consistency. (Like pullao or porridge)

This post is my contribution to RCI: Rajasthan - Flavours of the Desert.
RCI event is started by
Lakshmi of VeggieCuisine.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Dimple Kapadia's Bhutta Curry

In spite of that silliness of running around the trees and a boy meets a girl love stories, I love Bollywood movies. (of course, I must say that these days I have seen some seriously different movies like TZP, Johny Gaddar, Chini Kum, Life in Metro, Chak de India etc).

But generally speaking, Bollywood movies are total time pass and paisa vasool kind of a thing. Sometimes they connect me to India, sometimes act as a stress buster, sometimes they make me nostalgic.
After coming to US, I was surprised to know that many non-Indians know about Bollywood as well. Once we went to a Chinese restaurant, and the server who was serving us the food, suddenly quipped - "where can I get Indian movies here? I just loved Kuch kuch hota hain". and while saying this, she kept the plates on the table and with her hands did all the dance moves! It sure was hilarious. My friend, Anna who is originally from Russia, too was anxious to know the Indian stores for getting the Indian movies with subtitles. She said - "My all time favorite is Xeta and Greta"!:-D You guessed that right - she was talking about Seeta aur Geeta!! and her most favorite star is Mithun Chakraborty.

The dish I cooked is simple but the recipe belongs to the glamor personified. It's by Dimple Kapadia. When simple dish cooked by glamorous Dimple, I think it automatically becomes gorgeous and glamorous, don't you think?;-) Just the name of the chef adds the razzmatazz!!:-D

Oh, and how I did I get the recipe? Just a few years back, Filmfare online had a section "Star Recipes" and you got it, when there's a nice recipe, I have to scribble it or save it . :-D

Well, now the question remains, if it is really really Dimple Kapadia's recipe? Well, only Filmfare Online and Dimple herself, can answer that!;-) But we enjoyed it nonetheless! I even asked my husband a trivia question, who would be the chef of this recipe? He said," looking at you gleaming, I think it's someone from Bollywood. Is it Amitabh Bachchan or Shahrukh Khan or Hritik Roshan?". Well, he was close. I thought he would say Tarla Dalal or Sanjeev Kapoor, you know!!:-) but he said, if it's by them, I wouldn't have asked him this question. Hmmmm. I think that guy just knows me too well!;-)

So here it goes. I have given the recipe as it appeared in Filmfare. My changes are listed below.

Dimple Kapadia's Bhutta Curry
12 Bhuttas or 1 kg shelled corn
salt to taste

Whisk together to a smooth paste -
1 coconut, milk extracted
200 gm plain curds

Grind to a fine paste -
1/2 coconut grated
12 cloves garlic (Indian garlic)
1 bunch coriander leaves
8-10 green chilies

1 spring curry leaves
2 Tbsp oil
1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1. Pressure cook corn adding salt and a pinch of turmeric powder.
2. Heat oil. Add curry leaves, turmeric powder and ground paste. Saute for 2 minutes.
3. Add curds mixture. Bring to boil.
4. Drain the corn and add to the gravy. Adjust for salt.
5. Let it simmer. Cover.

Note -
1. I reduced the quantity as it would have been too much for us.
2. I used 1/2 cup reduced fat coconut milk.
3. I used only 1/4 cup grated coconut.
4. I used frozen corn niblets/shelled corn.
5. I reduced the amount of oil.

Filmfare Online

I think that this dish probably suits the theme of Bollywood Cooking. So this post is my entry to the Bollywood Cooking event at Meeta's Monthly Mingle.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Top 10 Pictures MeMe

My friend, Uma of Essence of Andhra, has tagged me for this MeMe. I need to come up with top 10 pictures. Well, I thought that these following 10 are not too bad. :-)

1. Khandvi/Suralichya Vadya

2. Shrikhand

3. Amiri Khaman

4. Beet Koshimbeer

5. Misal Pav

6. Aluchi Patal Bhaji
7. Dahi Batata Puri

8. Soul Kadhi
9. Lemon Yogurt Cake

10.Mango Kulfi

Now I think it is a fun MeMe, where you do not have to think a lot and use the pictures that are already on your blog. So girls, please do not get mad at me if I am tempted to tag you.

I am tagging -


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