Saturday, December 12, 2009

Broccoli Slaw Koshimbeer

This simple salad dressing of roasted peanut powder, lemon juice and seasonings comes very handy to try on any veggies - especially relatively unknown veggies. I have used it from jicama to broccoli slaw with very favorable ratings.
Broccoli Slaw chi Koshimbeer
Broccoli Salad
1 packet (12 oz) broccoli slaw
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
1 key lime, freshly squeezed
1/4 cup roasted, unsalted peanuts crushed/daaNyache koot
A pinch of sugar (or per taste)
2 tsp oil
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 or 2 green chilies, chopped or slit
1 tbsp cilantro/coriander leaves, chopped
1 tbsp fresh coconut (optional)
1. Mix slaw with salt and lemon juice.
2. Add all the remaining ingredients except tempering.
3. Heat oil in a small saucepan/fodNichi paLi. Add cumin seeds & green chilies. As they sizzle, drizzle the oil over the slaw. Mix well.
4. Keep aside for 10 minutes so all the flavors are nicely mixed up. Check for salt and lemon. Adjust accordingly.
5. Serve immediately.
Note -
1. Broccoli slaw packet comes with the shredded carrot and purple cabbage.

Friday, December 11, 2009

KeLya Upkari

This upkari has a traditional konkani (south canara) seasoning of mustard seeds, asafoetida, red chilies in coconut oil. It results in rather dry side dish. So instead of serving along with chapatis, serve it with daal - dalitauy to be precise, and rice.

KeLya Upkari
Stir Fried Plantains
1 raw plantain, peeled & chopped
salt to taste

2 tsp coconut oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric powder (optional)
1/2 tsp asafoetida
2 red chilies, halved

1. Heat oil in an iron or nonstick kadai/pan/wok.
2. Add the ingredients for tempering.
3. As they sizzle, add chopped plantains.
4. Stir fry for 12 - 15 minutes, sprinkling few drops of water in between.
5. Add salt when done.

Note -
1. Turmeric powder is optional but I use it anyway.
2. As Purnima has pointed out, you can use fresh coconut for garnish.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Soji - Rawa & Coconut Shira

Soji is a shira made with coconut milk. Addition of fresh turmeric leaves while cooking adds another dimension to this simple sweet.

Semolina Porridge
1 cup rawa/semolina
2 cups coconut milk (I used reduced fat organic)
1/8 tsp salt
3/4 cup grated jaggery (or per taste)
5 cardamoms, peeled & crushed

few nuts slivers like cashews, almonds etc
1 tbsp fresh coconut (Optional)

1. Mix jaggery& salt in coconut milk.
2. Roast rawa/semolina till golden on the low flame.
3. Add sweetened coconut milk in the rawa pan.
4. Stir till porridge like consistency is reached.
5. Add crushed cardamoms.
6. Garnish with nuts and coconut - if using.

Note -
1. You can add a fresh or dried turmeric leaf when adding the coconut milk. Discard the leaf before serving.
2. Traditionally, homemade coconut milk made from fresh coconuts is used for this recipe.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


We went to sample the newly opened Indian restaurant in our city. Instead of the same old Tandoori chicken and naan, they served totally different Indian cuisine like pongal and curd rice. It tasted so good.

Last week, I was working from home. It was cold. and I felt like having that delicious pongal. I tweaked the recipe and my version of pongal was created. It's now my comfort food.

Pongal - (Serves 1)
Daal-Rice Porridge
1/4 cup basmati rice
1/4 cup yellow moong daal
salt to taste
1 1/2 cup + 1/2 cup water

Roast & crush coarsely
9 black peppercorns
1/4 tsp cumin seeds

2 tsp oil or ghee
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 sprig curry leaves, torn
1/8 tsp asafoetida
4 dahyatli mirchi/curd chilies

1. Wash and drain daal and rice. Set aside.
2. Heat oil in a deep saucepan. Add cumin seeds, curry leaves and asafoetida. As the leaves sizzle, add dahi mirchi/curd chilies.
3. When the chilies start puffing up, lower the gas, add daal and rice. Fry for a minute.
4. Add 1 1/2 cup water, salt to taste and crushed black peppercorns.
5. Switch the gas to high. Bring to boil. Now lower the gas again. Cover and let it cook for 20 minutes on a low flame.
6. Now add remaining water and let it cook again for 10 more minutes.
7. Switch off the gas. Keep covered for 5 minutes before serving.

Note -
1. Do not powder the peppercorns. Just crush them coarsely using mortar and pestle.


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Nargisi Kabab

A classic Mughlai recipe -which I have tried to shallow fry to save on some calories. I also used chicken mince instead of mutton kheema/mince.

Nargisi Kababs
1/2 lb chicken mince
2 tsp garlic paste
2 tsp ginger paste
2 tbsp Shan Shammi Kabab Masala
2 tbsp chopped onion
2 tbsp chana daal/bengal gram, soaked for 4 hours
1 cup water

You will also need later,
2 tbsp chopped mint
3 - 4 slices of bread, blend to make fresh bread crumbs

4 hard boiled eggs, cooled completely

Oil for shallow/deep frying

Serving Suggestions
Sliced onions & lemon wedges


0. Hard boil eggs. Let them cool completely. Peel & set them aside. Preferably, keep them in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
1. Add all the ingredients except herbs, eggs/bread or oil in pressure cooker or handi.
2. Pressure cook for 4-5 whistles.
3. Open the lid when the pressure drops by itself. There will be still moisture in the chicken mince. Do not let it evaporate. Let it cool down completely. Keep it in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before proceeding.
4. Add mint & fresh bread crumbs. Knead to make it a nice dough.
5. Take a hard boiled egg. Enclose the egg completely with the chicken mince. Follow the same procedure for all the remaining eggs.
5. Heat a tawa/pan. Grease it lightly. Place the eggs gently on the pan. Cook them on all the sides.
6. Drain on the absorbent paper. Serve hot with onions, lemons & salad.

Note -
1. Traditionally, mutton mince is used for this recipe.
2. You can deep fry these kababs for better taste.
3. I more or less followed the recipe on the back of Shan Shami Kabab Masala.
4. As you may have noticed that the shape of this kabab is flattened at the ends. Since I shallow fried it with minimal amount of oil, I had to keep the egg on all the sides to make sure it's cooked well. If you deep fry, the egg retains its oval shape better.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Masala Puffed Corn

I found this puffed corn cereal in the natural section of the supermarket. So I decided to make them this spicy & crunchy.

Masala Puffed Corn

3 cups puffed corn, unsalted, sugar free
1/2 cup peanuts, unsalted (optional)
salt to taste
sugar to taste

2 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp asafoetida
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp goda masala
2 tbsp metkoot
1/2 tsp chili powder

1. Heat oil in a heavy bottomed sauce pan. Add ingredients for tempering.
2. As they sizzle, add peanuts. Saute for 2 minutes.
3. Add corn & salt & sugar.
4. Saute till it is coated with masala and heated through. I t should not burn.
5. Switch off the gas. Let it cool down. Store in an airtight container

1. More oil is needed to coat puffs uniformly with masala

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Navalkolachi Bhaji - Kohlrabi Stir fry

There are many ways, mom cooks kohlrabi. Today's recipe is the most common one. Goda masala, crushed roasted peanuts(daaNyache koot), tamarind, jaggery add a classic Maharashtrian touch.

Navalkolachi Bhaji
नवलकोलची भाजी
Kohlrabi Stir Fry
3 fresh kohlrabis, peeled & diced
1/2 cup fresh or frozen green peas
1/2 tsp coriander-cumin seed powder, freshly made
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 cup roasted, unsalted peanuts, peeled & crushed to powder
1/2 tsp goda masala

1 tsp tamarind pulp
jaggery to taste

salt to taste

2 tsp oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1 tbsp cilantro, chopped
1 tbsp fresh coconut(Optional)

1. Heat oil. Add all the ingredients for tempering.
2. Add kohlrabi & peas. Add 2 tbsp water.
3. Cover and let it cook till kohlrabi is cooked.
4. Add chili powder, coriander-cumin powder, goda masala, salt, jaggery, tamarind pulp and crushed peanuts.
5. Saute for 2 minutes.
6. Garnish with cilantro and coconut - if using.
Note -
1. Use unsalted, roasted peanuts.
2. You can add more water to make a gravy.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Tandoori Nuts

These spicy nuts make perfect munchies for the holiday season.

Tandoori Mixed Nuts
1/4 cup peanuts, unsalted, roasted, peeled
1/4 cup raw, unsalted cashews
1/4 cup raw, unsalted almonds
1/4 cup raw, unsalted walnuts

1 tsp oil (1/4 t + 1/4t +1/4 t + 1/4t)
2 tsp tandoori masala (1/2 tsp per nuts)
1. Heat pan. Fry peanuts for 30 seconds. Since they are already roasted, they won't need too much time. Add 1/4 tsp oil. Mix. Take off the gas. Stir in 1/2 tsp tandoori masala powder. Mix well without letting masala burn. Take off in a plate. Spread in a single layer. Cool down.
2. Wipe off the pan with a clean paper towel so all the masala powder is wiped off (else it will burn). Now roast cashews for about 2-3 minutes till they are well roasted. Add 1/4 tsp oil. Fry for 30 seconds. Take off the gas. Stir in 1/2 tsp tandoori masala powder. Mix well without letting masala burn. Take off in a plate. Spread in a single layer. Cool down.
3. Follow step 2 for almonds and walnuts (separately)
4. When all the nuts are cooled off, mix them together and serve or store in an airtight container.

Note -
1. Each nut has its own roasting time. So it's preferred to roast them separately.
2. The roasting time also depends on the freshness of the nuts. It may vary.
3. Check for salt content in your tandoori masala and accordingly adjust/add salt.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Chora na Vada

Have you ever met someone who tells the world what not to do and does exactly that? Look no further, I am talking about myself!!!:-D Well, when I blogged about chora daal, I warned everyone that you may mistake it for urad daal and it has totally different taste and flavor, so beware!! and guess what? I soaked it myself for making idlis. Luckily, because of some divine intervention, I realized and could save it just in time. So I drained it and ground it and decided to to make these vadas.

Of course, instead of deep frying, I just used Appe pan.

Chora na Vada
Cowpeas Daal VadasIngredients
1 cup chora daal, soaked
2 tbsp yogurt
2 tbsp whole wheat organic buttermilk pancake flour (optional)
1/2 cup fresh methi, chopped
salt to taste
1 tsp ginger-green chili paste/watela aadu-marcha
1/2 tsp asafoetida

Oil for frying

Crush to a coarse powder
8 - 10 black peppercorn
1 tsp coriander seeds

1. Soak chora daal for 4 hours.
2. Drain. Grind to a fine paste with very little water.
3. Add all the remmaining ingredients.
4. Heat Appe pan/patra/kayili. Add a drop of oil.
5. Drop spoonful of the batter. Cover and let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
6. Turn over and cook on the other side, adding oil as needed

Note -
1. Do not soak chora daal more than 4-5 hours.
2. I used whole foods brand organic pancake mix.
3. Use more or less fresh methi/fenugreek leaves based on your taste.
4. If you do not want to use pancake flour, add a pinch of baking soda.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Sungatha Hooman - Goan Prawns Curry

Just serve this prawns curry with plain rice to a seafood lover, and be assured that s/he will thank you profusely!

Sungtha Hooman
Goan Prawns Curry

2 cups prawns/Shrimp

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1/2 tsp salt

Roast in oil till soft

*1/2 onion

**7 byadgi chilies, roast till it changes to a shade darker

Grind to a fine paste

1 cup fresh coconut, grated

7 peppercorn

1 tbsp coriander seeds

*roasted onion from above

**roasted chilies from above

2 tsp tamarind pulp

1/2 tsp turmeric powder


2 tsp oil

remaining 1/2 onion, chopped


1. Clean, rinse prawns/shrimp. Marinate with salt and turmeric powder. Cover and refrigerate till ready to use.

2. Grind masala to a very smooth paste.

3. Heat oil - preferably coconut oil - in a saucepan. Add remaining 1/2 onion. Saute till onion is soft.

4. Now add marinated shrimp. Stir fry for a minute.

5. Add ground masala and 1 1/2 cups water. Bring to boil.

6. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes.

7. Serve hot with plain rice.

Note -

1. For the authentic flavor, coconut oil can be used.

2. Many Goan cooks prefer to use a piece of "haLkunda" or dried turmeric root.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Pindi Chana

When my Punjabi friend got married, we all friends were too happy to be part of her Bollywood style wedding. All the naachna-gaana, baarat, and midnight wedding at a plush Mumbai hotel near the ocean was right from the Bollywood movie. Oh and food? I remember it was delicious, but what I remember the most was that I was introduced to something called "Pindi Chana". I thought it was too good.

Then later one day, while flipping through the pages of my Hawkins recipe booklet, I found "Pindi Chana". It was a eureka moment for me. I tweaked and changed the recipe to get the one we had at that Mumbai hotel. And hence come up with this recipe.

Chana Pindi
Punjabi Chickpeas Masala
1 cup brown chickpeas
salt to taste
1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
1/2 tsp amchoor powder

For Bouquet Garni
1 green cardamom
2 cloves
1/2" cinnamon
wrap above ingredients in a muslin cloth and make a pouch or use a tea-ball.

Roast & grind
1 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
4 kashmiri chilies
1/2 tsp anardaana/dried pomegranate seeds
2 cloves

1 tsp ghee/clarified butter
2 tsp oil
1 tbsp ginger julianne
1 green chili, minced or slit

key lime, freshly squeezed
A pinch of garam masala
A pinch of chaat masala

1. Garnish with fine nylon sev on top
2. Garnish with a dollop of plain yogurt and mint on top
3. Serve on top of aloo tikki or hash browns for a different version of chole tikki.

1. Soak brown chickpeas overnight in plenty of water. Next morning you will get approx. 3 cups of plump chickpeas.
2. Pressure cook the chickpeas with 2 cups water, along with bouquet garni.
3. Discard the bouquet garni. Drain the cooking liquid and set aside.
4. Put the boiled chickpeas in a heavy bottomed kadai or pot. Add all the powdered spices along with amchur powder and cinnamon powder.
5. Let all the powdered spices coat the chickpeas evenly.
6. Add the cooking liquid & salt. Let it cook on a low flame till all the water evaporated and the chickpeas look dry.
7. In another saucepan, heat oil and ghee. Add ginger and chilies. Saute for 1 minute and drizzle over the chickpeas.
8. Stir well. Switch off the gas.
9. While serving, sprinkle lemon juice, garam masala and chaat masala.

Note -
1. I have used regular brown chickpeas for this recipe. But for the desired taste, look for bigger brown chickpeas - not kabuli chanas.
2. You can retain some cooking liquid to get a gravy consistency rather than dry one.


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Bajrichi Dushmi

A rustic flat-bread from my grandmother's kitchen.

Bajrichi Dushmi - (count 8)
बाजरी ची दशमी
Finger Millet Flatbread
2 cups bajari flour/baajriche peeth/bajra nu loat
salt to taste
1/2 tsp sugar or to taste
Lukewarm milk, as needed
Clarified butter/Ghee/Toop & jaggery
or Eggplant Bharit
or Garlic Chutney
1. Dry roast bajri flour on a low flame for 5 minutes.
2. Pour in a big plate or paraat.
3. Add sugar & salt.
4. Add tepid milk on need basis and knead a soft dough.

5. Make equal balls (about 8)
6. Roll into thin discs.

7. Roast on a pan till brown spots appear on both sides.

Note -
1. Knead the dough just before making dushmis. Do not knead it too much in advance.
2. Cover the dushmies in a clean, kitchen (cotton) napkin so they remain soft. Better yet, serve almost immediately after being made.
3. Bajri or finger millet has a distinct taste. So Aaji used to roast it lightly, especially if it is lying in the container for a long time and she also used to add a pinch of sugar to enhance the taste.
4. If you are trying it for the first time, you can use bajri flour and wheat flour in the equal propotion which will make rolling it easier.


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