Monday, June 30, 2014

Goda Masala




Goda Masala is, undoubtedly,  my most beloved spice powder. Mostly Indian food lovers are familiar with Garam Masala  but Goda Masala is a very complex and rustic spice blend used primarily in Maharashtrian cooking.

After painstakingly preparing Goda Masala at home for years together, my grandmother herself at one point, approved and endorsed Ketkar's Goda Masala [Dadar TT, Mumbai] and since then, she always bought her masala from there. This masala tasted just like my grandmother's own blend. Later, when Ketkar brothers closed down their shop, my frantic aunts and mom looked around for getting Goda Masala.

With due respect to all the pre-made, branded blends available in the market today, I am not very happy with the flavor of the goda masala which is available in the boxes on the shelves of the stores. However, there are quite a few places in Mumbai where you do get very good Goda Masala - Sarvodaya Stores, Dadar or Vijay Stores, Vile Parle  are really good.  But making your own blend is always very special.

This blog has many recipes that feature Goda Masala and I repeat, no other masala can substitute goda masala as flavor won't be just the same. Also please note that this Goda Masala is not the Kala Masala using onion and garlic. However, since this goda masala too is very dark brown - almost black in color, it is referred to as "KaLa Masala" in my family. Traditionally,Goda Masala is never, ever used with any non-vegetarian cooking. But of course, you are the ruler in your kitchen, so do as you please.

After gathering all the ingredients, I finally decided to make my own batch. I have used my cooking bible - Ruchira for making this masala. This recipe is based on Ruchira though it's not exactly same.

Thank you, Chaitali for that final nudge for posting this recipe. I would not have blogged it without your encouragement.




Goda Masala
गोडा  मसाला
Maharashtrian Spice Blend
Ingredients
2 cups coriander seeds/धणे
1 cup grated, dessicated coconut/सुके  खोबरे
1/2 cup white sesame seeds/तीळ
2 tbsp. cumin seeds/जिरे
1 tsp shahjire/शहाजिरे
1 tsp cloves/लवंग
2 pieces of 1" cinnamon/दालचिनी
1/2 tsp asafetida/हिंग
2-3 bayleaves/तमालपत्र
2 dagadfool/दगडफूल
1/2 tsp turmeric powder/हळद
1/4 cup chili powder/तिखट
2 tbsp. salt/मीठ
1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds/मेथी दाणे
1/2 tsp mustard seeds/राई /मोहरी

Oil as needed

Method
1. Dry roast sesame seeds. (without adding any oil)
2. Dry roast dessicated coconut (without added any oil)
3. Heat oil. Add asafetida.
4. Roast each spice one after the other, taking care not to burn. Use low flame.
5. Now, add roasted sesame seeds and coconut and roast again for few minutes.
6. Grind to fine/coarse powder based on your preference.
7. Store in an airtight container.

Some recipes for which Goda Masala is a must are -
1. Aamti
2. BhopLyacha Rassa
3. Batatyacha Rassa
4. Gavarichi bhaaji
5. Shenga -Vangyachi Bhaaji
6. KaLa Bhaat
7. Bharli Vaangi

Note
1. Let spices come to room temperature before grinding otherwise steam will be trapped in the masala blend.


Goda Masala Ingrdients


Credits
Ruchira - by  Mrs. Kamalabai Ogale.

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Friday, June 27, 2014

DaaNyache KooT - Roasted peanut powder


We Maharashtrians, always have daaNyache KooT in our pantry or fridge. It's nothing but roasted, unsalted peanut powder that adds nutty flavor to the koshimbeers, bhaajis and upwas cuisine.

Although, readymade daaNyache KooT is readily available especially in India now, I make my version. You can expedite the process by buying roasted, unsalted peanuts and grinding them coarsely in your blender. But traditionally, raw peanuts are roasted patiently, peeled off, hidden from kids who just want to gobble those roasted peanuts and run away, and then pound in a huge mortal and pestle. These days even blender/mixer can be used to make the powder. Whatever your preferred appliance of grinding is remember that a little crunch is necessary so do not powder these roasted peanuts too fine. It needs to be a coarse powder.

DaaNyache KooT
Roasted, unsalted peanut powder
Ingredients
Raw, unsalted peanuts - preferably from Indian Stores

Method
1. Pick peanuts for any impurity.
2. Place in an iron wok.
3. Keep on stirring from time to time on medium flame.
4. After the peanuts are uniformly roasted and the peels seem to come out easily,  switch the gas off.
5. Let them cool down enough to handle with bare hands.
6. Try to take the peels off.
7. Place them in a plate - traditionally a woven container called soop/सूप   - was used to get rid of the peels, as shown below.
8. After the peels are discarded, process the peeled, roasted peanuts in the food processor to make a coarse paste.
9. Store in an airtight bottle in fridge.
10. Use as needed.

Note -
1. As peanuts are being roasted and are very hot, sprinkle few drops of water. This will help peel come off easily.
2. My aunt used to put roasted peanuts in a cotton cloth bag and then she would remove the peels by squishing the cotton bag from outside. The peels come off easily and you don't have to touch super hot peanut.
 

 

 

 

 

 





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Thursday, June 26, 2014

Homemade Toop/Ghee/Clarified Butter



I explained the process of making white butter yesterday and how mom turned it into clarified butter.

But in the United States, I make clarified butter differently. I just simmer sweet cream butter (no added salt please! ) and let it turn into ghee/toop.

Sometimes, for flavor & if in season, I add a turmeric leaf.

Homemade Toop/Clarified Butter/Ghee
Ingredients
A stick of sweet cream butter (one or more sticks per need)


Method
1. Add the stick of butter/(or sticks) to a heavy bottomed pan.
2. Let it heat on a low flame.
3. Simmer till the butter is clarified that means you see milk solids at the bottom of the pan. We call this milk solids as beri/बेरी   in Marathi.
 



Note -
1. Do not use salted butter sticks.
2. You may add a fresh turmeric leaf - tied in a knot, while butter is heating up. This may be an acquired taste.



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Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Homemade White Butter/LoNi


 
My mom used to make homemade white butter - which we call LoNi/लोणी  in Marathi - every fortnight or so. She would painstakingly collect the cream (saai/साय ) and then add a spoonful of yogurt to prevent it from turning rancid. After every few weeks or so, she would churn it using a wooden yogurt churner stick - which we call Ravi/रवी  in Marathi. A huge dollop of homemade butter would start lurking out from that cream collection. The remaining buttermilk was used for making kadhi and some white butter would be retained to serve with bread, bhakri or thalipeeth and remaining butter was clarified to make toop/ तूप /ghee.

Here in the United States, I don't collect cream because we don't even drink full fat milk. But very rarely, I make white butter. It's a simple process here. I just use heavy whipping cream and churn it to turn it into butter. This process was taught to me by a lady who was acting as a pioneer woman at the local dairy farm festival.

Homemade White Butter - American Desi way
Ingredients
Heavy whipping cream

Method
1. Keep on churning or whirling the heavy whipping cream either using butter churner or blender. Add a cup of water.
2. You will see butter floating on top.
3. Drain and scoop the butter out.
4. You can use the remaining buttermilk for making kadhi, mattha or as a stock for daily daals.

Note -
1. I use both wooden butter churner and mixer depending on my mood. The above picture is using Magic Bullet. If using mixer or processor, the butter is ready in the matter of seconds.
2. Refrigerate the homemade butter, covered tightly and use as needed.

A lady who is pretending to be a pioneer woman at the local dairy farm festival, churning butter from heavy cream.


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Monday, June 23, 2014

Homemade Dahi/Yogurt



Off late, the supermarket shelves are loaded with Greek Yogurt containers and I miss our good, old plain dahi - yogurt. During last few visits to the super market, I couldn't find my usual yogurt brand. The rest of the brands either had pectin or gelatin which I don't care in my yogurt. So I went the traditional route of making it at home.

I remember that my mom used to add active yogurt cultures to barely warm milk every single night so we had fresh yogurt next day. It's not really a hard process. Of course, you may wonder how was the yogurt created for the very first time, since to set the yogurt, you do need some yogurt! (active cultures/VirjaN in Marathi/MervaN in Gujarati)


Homemade Dahi/Yogurt
Ingredients
1 cup milk (full fat, 2%, skim - whatever is your choice)
1 tsp yogurt

Method
1. Heat milk on the lowest gas mark.
2. Once it's boiled, switch it off and set aside to cool down to the room temperature.
3. In a ceramic bowl, add a spoonful of yogurt. Beat it quickly.
4. Add barely warm milk. Stir once.
5. Cover and keep aside in a warm place to set.
6. Homemade yogurt will be ready in about 6 - 8 hours depending on the climate. It will set quicker in summer than in winter.
7. Refrigerate once the yogurt is set.

Note -
1. If you forget to keep the yogurt in the fridge after setting, it may turn sour.
2. Generally ceramic or earthenware containers are used to set yogurt in India.




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Sunday, June 22, 2014

Bangde Puli Munchi - Tulu style Mackerels curry

Bangde PuliMunchi with Rosamatta Rice

I tasted this delicious Mackerels Curry at Jai Hind, Mumbai. I came to know that this was Tulu style fish curry. As I was devouring this hot and sour curry with rice, I thought of the ingredients that may have comprised this deliciousness.

This is my interpretation.

Bangde Puli Munchi
Hot & Sour Mackerels Curry - Tulu Style
Ingredients
3 mackerels, halved, gashes, cleaned
salt to taste
1/2 tsp turmeric powder

Soak in warm water
1 small ball of tamarind, seeds removed

Roast
12-15 byadgi chilies
1 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
7-8 fenugreek seeds

Grind above roasted spices with
1 shallot, peeled and chopped
3 cloves of garlic, peeled & chopped
1/2"ginger, peeled and chopped
1 tsp paprika for color

Tempering
1/2 tbsp. coconut oil
3 sprigs of curry leaves,

Method
1. Clean and halve mackerels. Cut gashes so the masala can penetrate. Marinate with salt and turmeric powder. Set aside.
2. Roast byadgi chilies, coriander seeds and fenugreek seeds.
3. Grind roasted spices with shallot, ginger, garlic and paprika.
4. Add tamarind pulp while grinding to make a fine but thick paste.
5. Heat oil in a saucepan. Add curry leaves.
6. As they splutter, add ground masala paste.
7. Saute for 5 minutes. Add 1 cup water.
8. As water comes to boil, add marinated mackerel pieces and salt to taste.

9. Let it simmer till thick gravy is formed.
Note -
1. Adjust byadgi chilies based on the desired heat. But this curry has to be hot and sour. After all, Puli = Tamarind, Munchi = Chilies!
2. Adjust consistency adding water as needed. But this curry should not have too thin consistency.
3. Readymade tamarind paste can be added.
4. You can use any other oil of your choice.

Credits
Jai Hind,
10, Hill Rd, Bandra West, Mumbai,
Maharashtra 400050, India

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Saturday, June 21, 2014

Vaal Lilva nu Shaak


This simple vegetable can be made using surti lilva, vaal lilva or toover lilva. These are the freshly plucked beans and are available in the freezer section of the Indian supermarkets.

Vaal Lilva nu Shaak
Fresh Beans Stir Fry
Ingredients
1 1/2 cup frozen fresh vaal lilva
4 baby potatoes, quartered
2 roma tomatoes, quartered
1 tsp Gujarati garam masala
1 cup water
salt to taste
1/2 tbsp jaggery


Grind to a paste
1/2" ginger
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup cilantro/coriander leaves
1 green chili (or per taste)


Tempering
2 tsp oil
1/4 tsp owa/ajmo/ajwain/carrom seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp asafoetida


Garnish
1 tbsp coriander leaves/cilantro, chopped


Method
1. Heat oil in a saucepan. Add carrom seeds, asafoetida and turmeric powder. as they splutter, add green paste. Saute for 1 minute.
2. Add tomatoes & Gujarati Garam Masala. Saute for 2 minutes.
3. Add beans, potatoes, water,  and let it cook on medium flame.
4. Add jiggery.
5. Let it simmer till the water is evaporated.
6. Garnish with coriander leaves.


Note
1. You can leave the water to get the gravy of the desired consistency.

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Friday, June 20, 2014

Hot Cross Buns


Gudiya learned to play recorder last year. It was the part of her school curriculum. So after coming home, she started teaching my mom - who was visiting us and me. Although we enjoy music tremendously, we have not played any musical instrument so far. But our teacher didn't give up on us.

I am happy to report that my mom and I passed the very first step and earned the coveted yellow belt from Gudiya. Now, all three generations can play B-A-G, B-A-G, G-G-G-G, A-A-A-A, B-A-G which, by the way is Hot Cross Buns tune.

To celebrate, I baked - you guessed it - Hot Cross Buns! I went to my favorite recipe site - Cooking Light and tried to lighten the recipe a bit. Please excuse the quality of the pictures below, I had to maneuver using the basic camera due to a camera mishap few days ago. The recipe is as-is from the cooking light and due credit is given to the creator and the website.

 
 
Hot Cross Buns
  • Rolls:
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup dried currants
  • 1/4 cup warm orange juice (120° to 130°) $
    Click to see savings
  • 19 ounces all-purpose flour (about 4 1/4 cups), divided
  • 4.5 ounces whole-grain pastry flour (about 1 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange rind $
    Click to see savings
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated whole nutmeg
  • 1 package quick-rise yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
  • 1 cup warm fat-free milk (120° to 130°) $
    Click to see savings
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten $
    Click to see savings
  • Cooking spray $
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  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 large egg white $
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  • Glaze:
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon 2% reduced-fat milk $
    Click to see savings
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • Preparation

    1. 1. To prepare rolls, combine first 3 ingredients in a small bowl; let stand 10 minutes. Drain fruit in a colander over a bowl, reserving fruit and juice.
    2. 2. Weigh or lightly spoon 18.5 ounces (about 4 cups plus 2 tablespoons) all-purpose flour and pastry flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flours, salt, and next 5 ingredients (through yeast) in the bowl of a stand mixer with dough hook attached; mix until combined. Combine reserved orange juice, fat-free milk, honey, butter, and 2 eggs in a bowl, stirring with a whisk. With mixer on, slowly add milk mixture to flour mixture; mix at medium-low speed 7 minutes. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Add reserved fruit. Knead 2 minutes or until smooth and elastic; add enough of remaining 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking. Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm, dry place, free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in size. (Gently press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, dough has risen enough.) Punch dough down; cover and let rest 5 minutes. Divide into 24 equal portions; roll each portion into a ball. Place rolls in muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Cover and let rise for 1 hour or until almost doubled in size.
    3. 3. Preheat oven to 350°.
    4. 4. Combine 1 tablespoon water and egg white; stir with a whisk. Gently brush rolls with egg white mixture. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until golden, rotating pans once during baking. Remove from pans; cool 10 minutes on a wire rack.
    5. 5. To prepare glaze, combine powdered sugar and remaining ingredients in a bowl, stirring with a whisk. Microwave at HIGH 20 seconds or until warm. Spoon glaze into a zip-top plastic bag. Seal bag; snip a tiny hole in 1 corner of bag. Pipe a cross on top of each warm roll.
    Sidney Fry, MS, RD,
    APRIL 2012




    Credits
    http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/hot-cross-buns-50400000120213/
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    Thursday, June 19, 2014

    Roasted Mini Peppers Chutney


    I had roasted some mini peppers and they were in the fridge. They gave me the inspiration for making this simple chutney.


    Roasted Mini Peppers Chutney
    Ingredients
    9-10 roasted/grilled mini peppers
    9-10 grape tomatoes, roasted
    1 cup onion sliced, roasted
    4-5 cloves of garlic roasted
    salt to taste
    1/2 tsp tamarind pulp
    1/2 tbsp. jaggery
    1 tsp hot chili powder


    Tempering
    1/2 tbsp. oil
    2 tbsp. urad daal
    1/2 tsp asafetida
    1  tbsp. chana daal


    Method
    1. Roast all the vegetables. Let them cool down.
    2. Heat oil. Saute urad daal and chana daal till reddish. Add asafetida. Sauté for few seconds, without letting it burn.
    3. Powder daals in a blender. Add roasted vegetables with their cooking juices, jaggery, salt, chili powder and tamarind pulp. Grind to a smooth paste.
    4. Serve with Idli, dosa or Oothapam.

    Note -
    1. Mini peppers are very mild. So I added hot chili powder. Adjust per your liking.


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    Tuesday, June 17, 2014

    Oven Roasted Tomato Pickle



    Remember that scene from the movie "Namesake" where Tabu mixes some chili powder and masalas with cereal to make instant bhel? Well, I am not far behind. When I found the oven roasted tomatoes in olive oil, I stirred in some pickle masala and made my own instant tomato pickle. It was delicious.

    Oven Roasted Tomato Pickle
    Ingredients
    1/2 cup oven roasted tomatoes with olive oil
    1 -  2 tbsp. pickle masala - homemade or readymade
    A pinch of salt to taste.

    Method
    1. Mix first two ingredients.
    2. Depending on the salt content of the pickle masala, adjust salt.
    3. Mix well and set aside for a day.
    4. Serve next day.

    Note -
    1. I use "Bedekar" brand for readymade pickle masala.
    2. I used Costco brand oven roasted tomatoes in olive oil.
    3. Refrigerate any unused portion.

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    Monday, June 16, 2014

    American Desi Basket Chaat


     

     
    I read about this egg in a basket recipe. It immediately inspired me to bake the "nests" or baskets to make chaat. It turned out to be an instant hit for our Father's Day celebration. Gudiya helped me by clipping the mint for the chutney. It was her contribution for the Father's Day party.

    American Desi Basket Chaat
    Ingredients
    1 bag frozen shredded potatoes/hash - thawed in the fridge
    Cooking Spray

    1 recipe Tamarind Date Chutney
    1 recipe Green Chutney
    1 recipe Red Garlic Chutney

    1 recipe sweetened yogurt
    1 cup boiled garbanzo beans

    1 cup nylon/thin sev
    1/3 cup minced red onion
    2 tbsp. minced green mango (optional)

    Garnish
    2 tbsp. minced cilantro
    A generous pinch of chaat masala per serving

    Method
    1. Thaw the frozen shredded potatoes in the fridge.
    2. Preheat oven 400F
    3. Spray muffin tray with cooking spray such as Pam.
    4. Place about1/4 cup shredded potatoes and mold it at the bottom and around each muffin cup. Spray some more cooking spray over the potatoes.
    5. Bake for about 30 minutes till the cups are crispy.
    6. Take them out and leave them for 2-3 minutes.
    7. Place few garbanzo beans, minced onion, green mango - if using , each chutney per taste, sev, yogurt.
    8. Garnish with cilantro and chaat masala.
    9. Serve immediately.

    Note -
    1. Sweetened yogurt is prepared by whisking plain yogurt with salt and sugar to taste.
    2. Do thaw the frozen shredded potatoes till they are pliable to give the shape of the muffin cup. Frozen shredded potatoes are as hard as sticks.

    Credit
    http://simmerandboil.cookinglight.com/2014/03/11/wow-youve-got-to-try-this-egg-baskets/

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    Sunday, June 15, 2014

    Shrimp Mayo Roll

     


    Gudiya requested for her favorite chicken mayo roll. I didn't have chicken in the fridge. I thought of substituting salad shrimp. I was thinking of making a roll inspired by New England's famous Lobster Roll.

    This is my version -

    Shrimp Mayo Roll
    Ingredients
    1/2 cup salad shrimp
    1/2 cup sliced baby portabella mushrooms
    salt to taste
    A dash of ground black pepper
    1 tsp. Hot & Sweet Mayo (I love Trader Joe's)
    2 tbsp. Mayo (I used Whole Foods Organic Mayo)

    Tempering
    1/2 tbsp. oil
    1 clove garlic, grated
    1 small shallot, minced
    A pinch of turmeric powder

    You will also need
    Shredded Lettuce (Optional)
    4 Hot Dog Buns (I used Whole Wheat version)

    Method
    1. Heat oil in a saucepan. Add garlic , shallot and turmeric powder. Sauté till soft.
    2. Add mushrooms,. Sauté till it is cooked
    3. Add shrimp. Sauté till moisture has evaporated. Add salt and pepper.
    4. Switch off the gas and let it cool down completely.
    5. Toast each hotdog bun lightly.
    6. Mix in lettuce - if using, with the shrimp stuffing.
    7. Divide evenly among all the buns.
    8. Serve immediately.

    Note -
    1. Salad shrimp is generally already cooked. So adjust cooking time accordingly,
    2. If using regular raw shrimp, adjust cooking time.
    3. If shrimp is too large, chop into small pieces before adding to the mushroom mixture.
    4. Vegetarian variation - Vegetarians may omit shrimp altogether and may use Vegan Mayo to make purely plant based roll.







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    Friday, June 13, 2014

    Spinach Fusilli Pasta

     
    Like all mothers everywhere, when I cook dinner on the weekdays, I look for a recipe that is quick, nutritious and kid-friendly. Gudiya seems to love pasta. So I sneak in as many vegetables as possible. I even add turmeric to my pasta!
     
    Spinach Fusilli Pasta
    Ingredients
     1 cup whole wheat fusilli, cook according to the packet directions
    1 red bell pepper, cored, sliced
    1 cup baby portabella mushrooms, sliced
    1 ½ cup frozen spinach
    1 tsp Italian seasoning
    Salt to taste

    Tempering
    1 tbsp. olive oil
    1 tbsp. minced garlic (fresh)
    ½ tsp turmeric powder

    Method
    1.     Cook pasta according to the instructions.
    2.    Heat oil. Add garlic. Sauté for a minute.
    3.    Add mushrooms. Let the moisture evaporate.
    4.    Add bell peppers, turmeric powder and Italian seasoning.
    5.    Add spinach. Allow it to thaw.
    6.    Add cooked pasta and salt to taste.
    7.    Mix and serve – if needed sprinkle cheese of your choice.

    Note –
    Since turmeric powder is full of antioxidant properties, I even add it in my pasta.

     

     




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    Thursday, June 12, 2014

    Kohlrabi Upkari



    The original recipe of upkari does not include moog daal. But I added it -  borrowing from my Maharashtrian roots - for some protein boost.
     
    Kohlrabi Upkari
    Kohlrabi Stir Fry
    Ingredients
    3 small /medium kohlrabi, peeled and chopped
    1/4 cup yellow moong daal, soaked for 2 hours in water before cooking
    salt to taste
     
    Tempering
    1/2 tbsp. coconut oil
    1/2 tsp mustard seeds
    1/4 tsp asafetida
    3 red chilies, halved/broken
     
    Garnish
    Freshly scraped coconut
     
    Method
    1. Heat oil in a kadai. Add tempering ingredients. As they splutter, add drained moong daal.
    2. Saute for 5 minutes.
    3. Add kohlrabi pieces. Stir.
    4. Cover with a lid. Place some water in the lid.
    5. Check from time to time. Each grain of daal should be separate. So do not let it overcook.
    6. Add salt to taste.
    7. Garnish with fresh coconut
     
    Note-
    1. Do not add water while cooking otherwise, it will overcook the daal.

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

    Udadache Daangar




    There are actually three meanings for the word "Daangar" in Malvani/Marathi. You understand the meaning based on the reference. First meaning is a "cutlet" like seafood preparation. Second meaning is red pumpkin or bhopLa and the third meaning is a side dish or raita prepared with urad daal flour. Today, I am featuring the third daangar - urad daal flour raita. I want to warn you that this dish may require an acquired taste.
     
    Readymade daangar peeth/flour is available in many Konkani/Malvani stores in Mumbai.

    Udadache Daangar
    Urad Flour Chutney/Raita
    Ingredients
    1 cup urad daal flour
    salt to taste
    1 tsp red chili powder
    1 tsp coriander powder
     
     
    1/4 cup red onion, finely minced
    1 green chili, finely minced
    2-3 sprigs cilantro (optional), finely minced
     
    1 cup buttermilk - use more if needed
     
    Tempering
    1/2 tbsp. oil
    1/2 tsp asafetida
    1/2 tsp mustard seeds
     
    Method
    1. Roast urad daal flour on a low heat till it is a shade darker.
    2. Pour in a bowl.
    3. Add salt, powders and buttermilk.
    4. Make sure that there are no lumps.
    5. Add onion, chili and cilantro - if using
    6. Add the tempered oil.
    7. Serve as a chutney with the main meal.
     
    Note -
    1. This "chutney" may require an acquired taste.
    2. You may need to add more buttermilk, as it goes on absorbing flour, especially if it made too much in advance.

    Tuesday, June 10, 2014

    Cauliflower Wraps



    My otherwise, mundane cauliflower chi bhaaji and poli combo gets a royal welcome at the dinner table when I present it as "Cauliflower Wraps".

    Cauliflower Wraps
    Ingredients
    Cauliflower Dry Subzi
    Chapatis - homemade or readymade

    Garnish
    A generous pinch of chaat masala

    Salad
    Shredded purple cabbage
    Shredded lettuce
    Minced cilantro

    Method
    1. Place shredded vegetables on the roti.
    2. Place cauliflower subzi and cilantro.
    3. Sprinkle chaat masala per taste. Fold over to make a burrito style wrap.
    4. Serve immediately.

    Note -
    1. Do not make it too much in advance or it will turn soggy.
    2. Any dry cauliflower subzi can be used. I used Gobhi-Paneer subzi in the picture above.


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    Sunday, June 8, 2014

    Turkey Sandwich

    Gudiya's dabba - Turkey Sandwich, homemade baked pita chips and grape tomatoes

    I was raised on a non-vegetarian diet. What that meant was, every Sunday, we ate either seafood, chicken or  mutton. We mostly didn't eat it on any other day. Monday was undoubtedly meatless for religious purpose. Sometimes, Wednesday used to be an exception when some leftovers from Sunday were tolerated. Both my maternal and paternal grandmothers ate only seafood per their hardcore GSB beliefs. But they were adventurous enough to have tried making the food that was never part of their culture.

    When my maternal grandfather met with an accident, he was advised to take an egg diet. He was a strict vegetarian himself. But he started taking egg as a medicine reluctantly. My maternal grandmother started making raw eggs with milk mixture for him. Seeing that, her kids wanted more adventure with eggs in the kitchen. So she started making omelets. (she called it Andyacha PoLa - egg dosa)

    My paternal grandmother went a step further. Her kids tasted mutton curry at friends' house. They loved it so much that they pestered her relentlessly. Finally, she learnt the recipe from the neighbors and started cooking it for her kids.

    By the time I was born, chicken and mutton had already become a staple Sunday meal for the family. Although, I never tasted my grandmothers' creations since both of them had stopped making eggs/meat dishes by then, I often get amazed by their openness to embrace the unknown territory.  Both of them never ate the eggs/meat preparations that they made. But the most touching part is that they never judged people who chose to have different choices than their own firm beliefs.

    I think that's the reason I don't judge when people choose to eat beef, venison, rabbit, or want to be vegan. The greatest gift I got from my lovely grandmothers is not to be judgmental just because people have different food preferences (or any preferences for that matter!)

    Now, why do I wonder about it? My daughter wants me to cook with pork, beef and turkey. This is an unknown territory for me. I just can't cook  beef or pork. Although she longs for that big Thanksgiving Turkey on the dinner table every year, it's something I just can't do. I have made ground Turkey kheema for her, but that just doesn't cut it. I do have to overcome that mental block - may be just like my grandmothers - but for now, I made this Turkey Sandwich for Gudiya's  lunchbox. She gave me 5 stars ratings and called me the best sandwich maker in the world.

    Turkey Sandwich - makes 1 Sandwich
    Ingredients
    2 Whole wheat bread slices
    1 slice Mozzarella cheese, cut into halves
    2 slices Deli Turkey or chicken - preferably organic
    1/2 tsp oven roasted tomatoes
    1 tsp mayonnaise
    A few drops of mustard
    few fresh spinach leaves

    Method
    1. Spread little mayo over both bread slices.
    2. Place half a slice of cheese.
    3. Place few spinach leaves.
    4. Top with turkey slices
    5. Squirt few drops of mustard and spread.
    6. Now add oven roasted tomatoes.
    7. Place remaining half of the cheese.
    8. Enclose with the bread slice.
    9. Now, place on a hot griddle or tawa. Toast on a low flame till cheese melts and holds the sandwich together. Flip and toast on both sides.
    10. Take out and cut into two halves.

    Note -
    1. You can use 2 slices of cheese but I like to limit the cheese intake.
    2. I really use a tiny amount of mayo but if you like the flavor, please feel free to use more.


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    Thursday, June 5, 2014

    Grape Tomato Pizza


     

     


    My Pizzeria adventure continues...


    Grape Tomato Pizza (Makes 1 pizza)

    Ingredients

    1 readymade pizza crust (See note below)

    1 tbsp. homemade or readymade basil pesto
    5 Grape Tomatoes, halved
    1/4 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
     
    Garnish(Optional)
    Crushed red pepper
     
    Method
    1. Preheat oven 400F.
    2. Place readymade pizza crust on a baking or pizza tray.
    3. Spread basil pesto around the crust leaving about 2" border around the circumference of the crust.
    4. Scatter grape tomato halves over the pesto.
    5. Sprinkle Mozzarella cheese over.
    6. Bake for about 5-6 minutes or till the cheese is melted.
    7. Cut into wedges.
    8. Garnish with crushed red pepper if using.
     
    Note -
    1. I used Whole Foods Brand Whole Wheat Pita for this recipe.
    2. In summer, when there is abundant Italian Basil growing in backyard, I use homemade pesto. But here, I used Costco brand Basil Pesto.
    3. You can most certainly make homemade pizza crust.
     Grape Tomato Pizza & Arugula Pizza

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    Tuesday, June 3, 2014

    Arugula Pizza

     


    Arugula is leafy greens with peppery bite. It also goes by the name "Rocket" due to the unique shape of its leaves. Arugula pizza is baked first and then you add fresh Arugula on top. In my Pizza escapades so far, this is my husband's most favorite pizza.

    Arugula Pizza (Makes 1 pizza)
    Ingredients
    1 readymade pizza crust (See note below)
    1 tbsp. readymade oven roasted tomatoes with Italian seasoning
    A handful of Arugula
    1/4 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
     
    Garnish(Optional)
    Crushed red pepper
     
    Method
    1. Preheat oven 400F.
    2. Place readymade pizza crust on a baking or pizza tray.
    3. Spread Oven roasted tomatoes around the crust leaving about 2" border around the circumference of the crust.
    4. Sprinkle Mozzarella cheese over.


    6. Bake for about 5 minutes or till the cheese is melted.
    7. Cut into wedges.
    8. Garnish with crushed red pepper if using.
     
    Note -
    1. I used Whole Foods Brand Whole Wheat Pita for this recipe.
    2. I used Costco brand oven roasted tomatoes. It has lots of oil. So try to use only tomatoes, shaking off as much excess oil as possible, before spreading on the crust.
    3. You can most certainly make homemade pizza crust.

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    Sunday, June 1, 2014

    Chicken Pesto Pizza

     
     
    Have you ever met those annoying people who wonder & ponder over every bite they put in their mouth at restaurants? They want to know what ingredients may have gone in that morsel? Well, then you have met either me or people just like me. My husband thinks that I eat less and wonder more about the recipe.  Oh well, that's just the way it is! Recently we went to a Pizza place that serve a variety of pizza (potato pizza, anyone?). So it's very natural that you will now see a plethora of Pizza recipes at Enjoy Indian Food!;-)
     
    Since most of the ingredients below were store bought, this pizza appeared even on a very hectic week night dinner table.
     
     
    Chicken Pesto Pizza (Makes 1 pizza)
    Ingredients
    1 readymade pizza crust (See note below)
    1 tbsp. homemade or readymade basil pesto
    2 strips  grilled/baked/roasted boneless, skinless chicken, cut into cubes
    1/4 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
     
    Garnish(Optional)
    Crushed red pepper
     
    Method
    1. Preheat oven 400F.
    2. Place readymade pizza crust on a baking or pizza tray.
    3. Spread basil pesto around the crust leaving about 2" border around the circumference of the crust.
    4. Scatter chicken cubes over the pesto.
    5. Sprinkle Mozzarella cheese over.
    6. Bake for about 5-6 minutes or till the cheese is melted.
    7. Cut into wedges.
    8. Garnish with crushed red pepper if using.
     
    Note -
    1. I used Whole Foods Brand Whole Wheat Pita for this recipe.
    2. In summer, when there is abundant Italian Basil growing in backyard, I use homemade pesto. But here, I used Costco brand Basil Pesto.
    3. You can most certainly make homemade pizza crust.
     


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