Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Methi Thepla-Wholewheat Flatbread With Fresh Fenugreek Leaves

This flatbread/roti is native to Gujarat.It is easy to prepare and healthy as it contains fresh fenugreek leaves(methi).This can also be packed into lunchboxes as well.Whenever I have a bunch of fresh methi leaves I prepare it without fail as my family loves it very much..This can also be served with any spicy curry which is not a must though.Accompanied with pickle and curd/yogurt makes it a complete food.

Whole wheat flour/Atta                                 2cups
Red chilli powder                                             1/2tsp
Turmeric powder                                             1/4tsp
Salt                                                                        to taste
Sugar                                                                  2 pinches
Fresh chopped methi/
fenugreek leaves(only leaves)                  1/2cup,cleaned,rinsed,chopped
Curd/yogurt                                                    1tbsp
Oil                                                                        1tbsp
Some more flour/atta                                 for dusting
 oil/ghee(clarified butter)                         for roasting theplas/rotis

  • Take all the ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
  • First mix everything as it is,then adding required amount of water knead to form a nice soft dough like you make for rotis.
  • Divide into 12 equal portions,shape to balls
  • Using a rolling pin,and using flour for dusting,roll into 5-6 inch round discs.
  • heat a tawa/griddle and carefully roast on both sides,applying oil in between and keep adjsuting the flame as well.
  • Serve with curd and tomato pickle or any pickle of your choice.


Friday, 5 June 2015

Rasam Powder-A South Indian Spice Mix :)

Home made masalas are the best and make oneself feel proud too!!.It hardly takes time if all the ingredients required are kept ready and with a little patience you can make yourself and people around you happy.I prefer home made powders to the store bought ones(atleast the ones which I know to make).The flavours are definitely fresh and aromatic.There are different methods and umpteen recipes for the spice mix.This is one such I usually make and will share the other varieties in my future posts.

Coriander seeds(dhaniya)             1cup
Cumin seeds(jeera),heaped           1/4cup
Fenugreek(methi)                             1/8 cup
Byadagi chillies                                 30 nos
black peppercorns
(kali mirch)                                         1tbsp
Tuvar daal
(split pigeon peas)                           1tbsp
Moong daal
(Split green gram)                           1tbsp
Curry leaves                                       1tbsp
Mustard seeds                                   1/2tsp
Turmeric powder                            1/2tsp

  • Roast every single ingredient separately on a low flame till a nice aroma of the roasting ingredient  is felt.
  • Place on a plate one after the other and let it cool.
  • With the help of a clean and absolutely dry mixie/blender jar pulse the chillies first(break into 2-3 pieces)then add remaining ingredients and blend to get a nice powder.
  • Store in a clean and dry jar.
  • This can be stored for couple of months.

Monday, 1 June 2015

Mixed Vegetable Kurma

Kurma as we call  is also spelled Kormaa/Qorma which has its roots in Central Asian/Mughlai Cusine that is usually yogurt/cream or nut based and prepared with meat.Iam presenting  a South Indian version prepared with coconut as a base flavoured with different spices using fresh vegetables resulting in a lip smacking kurma that goes good with puri,roti,dosa or even with pulao.

Mixed cut vegetables                   (cauliflower,potato,peas,carrot,beans,bottlegourd)about 2 cups

For the masala:
Freshgrated coconut                        1/2 cup
Green chilli                                           1
Byadagi chillies(roasted)              2
Sprigs of coriander leaves             2-3 
Garlic cloves(peeled)                       2
Onion(small)                                      1
Ginger                                                   1"piece
Cashewnuts                                        1tbsp
Turmeric powder                             1/3tsp
Cloves                                                   3-4
Saunf                                                    1/2tsp
Coriander seeds                               1/2tsp
(only seeds)                                      of 1pod
Cinnamon/dalchini                      a small piece
Peppercorns/Kali                          4
Poppy seeds(khus khus)             1/2tsp
Tamarind/Imli                                size of a chickpea

For seasoning:
Oil                                                        3+1tsp
Mustard seeds                                1/2tsp
Curry leaves                                   3-4
Onion(chopped)                            1 small
 sour variety                                   2 nos

  • Pressure cook the vegetables with required water and a dash of salt to just 1 whistle.
  • In a kadai add 1tsp oil and add the cinnamon,cloves,peppercorns,cardamom,corainder seeds,saunf,poppy seeds and lighlty roast.
  • Add the cashewnuts,ginger,garlic,onions,green chilli and saute for a minute.
  • Add turmeric powder,corainder leaves,fresh coconut,stir once add tamarind and switch off.let it cool
  • Take the roasted ingredients for masala in a blending jar,dry blend first till it becomes coarse then adding little water blend to form a smooth thick paste.
  • In the same kadai add 3tsp oil and heat it up.Throw in the mustard seeds followed by curry leaves then the onions,saute till translucent.
  • Add the tomatoes and saute till it becomes pulpy.
  • Add the prepared masala and saute for the next 5 minutes on a low flame
  • Add the cooked veggies,required amount of water and boil for 5-7 minutes.
  • Switch off the flame.

I have used only one green chilli as the one iam using is terrible spicy.
The vegetable combination may be altered depending upon the availability,only Potato,Peas and Carrot would also be a great combo.
 Serving Idea:Here I have served it with fried rice of which I will post the recipe soon...


Vegetable Fried Rice

The term fried rice refers to steamed  rice stir fried along with vegetables.Fried rice originated in China which is loved across the world.This is a simple recipe that is loved by everyone at home.Original recipe was by my friend Ms.Swapna L,but I have made minor changes,without affecting its originality.Tastes great when accompanied with some spicy gravy or atleast hot and sweet tomato ketchup as this version of rice does not use much of spice in it.

Rice                                                                       1.5cups
Oil                                                                         3-4tbsp(apprx)
Butter                                                                  1tsp
Vinegar                                                               2tsp
Salt                                                                       to taste
Lemon juice                                                      1/2tsp
Water(for cooking rice)                              3cups

Cabbage(fine chopped)                               1/2cup
Carrots(finely chopped)                             1/4cup
Green Beans(finely chopped)                   1/4cup
Spring onion/Scallions,chopped            1/4cup
Green peas(fresh/frozen)                          1/4cup
Sweet corn                                                       1/4cup
Onion(finely chopped)                               1/4cup
Green chilli(minced)                                   1
Garlic flakes(minced)                                2-3

  • Wash rice and pressure cook adding specified amount of water,little salt,lemon juice and a tsp of oil to one whistle,then turning  the gas mark to low and cook for 6-8 minutes.
  • In a small pot add peas,corn,beans and carrots and boil for 2-3 minutes,drain and set aside.
  • When the pressure is all gone,open the lid and let it cool for sometime.
  • Take a heavy deep pan and add heat with oil(2-3tbsp)
  • Let the flame be on high till all are vegetables are sauteed
  • Add the minced garlic and green chillies,after 15 seconds add the fine chopped onions,saute for 30 seconds.
  • Add cabbage and sauté for another 30 seconds.toss in the spring onions(reserve a little to add just before serving),sauté for 15 seconds,then the blanched vegetables,salt,vinegar and give a nice stir.
  • Now reduce or can even switch off the flame,add the rice(with a help of a fork mix and separate clusters if any)
  • Combine everything very well carefully not mashing the rice,adding a tsp of butter.
  • Cover and cook on low flame for the next 5 minutes.
  • Serve adding the reserved spring onions ,lightly mixing it up with any spicy gravy of your choice.
Served with Red Thai Curry-

I have used regular sona masoori rice,but has to be cooked maintaining a slight grainy texture,again the measurements of water should be altered according to the need as it differs with the rice variety.
Just cook it  as you cook for rice dishes.
There is nothing like all the vegetables mentioned should be used,while cabbage,onions and any 2 others are recommended.
More oil may be used  if needed.
Spice lovers may use 1-2 minced green chillies by mixing it just before serving.

Instant Tomato Pickle/Chutney

Tomato chutney/pickle/thokku are all  specialities  of South India.A good substitute for  coconut chutney or for those who do not like to use coconut in abundance. This is an easy recipe which results in a very tasty pickle/chutney that can be served as an accompaniment.I call it pickle as it has a coarse powder of mustard and fenugreek.

Ripe tomatoes                                          3
Blanched/pureed tomatoes                made with  2 tomatoes
Garlic cloves(peeled)                            4-5
Chilli powder                                           1tsp
Methi seeds(fenugreek)                      5-6
Mustard                                                    1/2tsp
Hing(asafoetida)                                  a pinch
Turmeric(haldi)                                    1/4tsp
Tamarind pulp                                      a little(only if tomatoes are of less sour variety)
Jaggery/sugar                                      to taste(like 1/2tsp)

For tempering:
Gingily oil                                              1tbsp
Mustard seeds                                     1/2tsp

  • Fine chop the tomatoes and garlic.
  • Dry roast mustard and methi and powder in a mortar,or place in a polythene or thick paper and using a rolling pin just roll over to get a powder consistency.
  • In a pan heat oil and temper with mustard seeds followed by chopped garlic and lightly brown them.
  • Add hing,chopped tomatoes,salt,jaggery,tamarind,tomato puree and saute on medium flame.
  • The tomatoes will give out a lot of moisture,cook uncovered till almost evaporates.
  • Add chilli powder,turmeric powder,and saute,add the crushed powder and cook till becomes like a pulpy semi-dry mixture.
  • Serve with rice,rotis and dosas.
  • Any oil of choice may be used
  • This stays good for few days if refrigerated.

Matar Paneer-Green Peas and Cottage Cheese Cubes in a Aromatic Sauce

This is an authentic North Indian dish popular all over India and even across the globe.The combination of spices and the rich gravy make it more flavoursome.It tastes great when served with Indian flatbread..i.e., roti,naan,etc or even with pooris(Indian deep fried pufffed bread).Original recipe credit goes to my aunt Ms.Geetha Bhat..with me making few additions over the years.This has been a favourite accompaniment with chapathi/poori in my home since years.

Paneer (cottage cheese)                                 100 gms
Fresh/frozen peas                                            1.5 cups
Tomatoes(M)                                                     2 nos,finely chopped
Onions(m)                                                          2 nos,finely chopped
Garam masala powder                                 1/4 tsp
kitchen King Masala                                      1/2 tsp
kasoori Methi
(dried Fenugreek leaves)                             1.5 tsp
Chopped green bell pepper
(capsicum)                                                         2 tbsp
Amchur(dry mango powder)                    1/4 tsp
Oil                                                                         2 tbsp

For masala:
Oil                                                                        1 tsp
Onions(M)                                                        2 nos,chopped
Peppercorns                                                    2-3
Cloves                                                                3-4
Cinnamon                                                        1 inch piece
Cardamom                                                      1(only seeds)
Cashew nuts                                                   2tbsp
Poppy seeds                                                    1tsp
Ginger                                                               1.5inch piece,chopped
Garlic flakes                                                   5,peeled and chopped
Red chilli powder                                         1.5tsp
Turmeric powder                                         1/4tsp
Chopped fresh corianderleaves              2tsp

  • Keep 2 skillets/kadai ready(atleast one of them non-stick for sauteeing the masala)
  • If using frozen peas then soak in water for 10-15 minutes,later drain out the water.
  • Cut he paneer into cubes.
  • In a skillet heat a tsp of oil and setting the flame to mediumadd cloves,cardamom seeds,cinnamon,poppy seeds,peppercorns and saute lightly
  • Add the chopped ginger and garlic and saute lightly followed by onions,also saute for couple of minutes.
  • Add the cashewnuts,chilli powder,coriander leaves and turmeric and stir once.Switch off the flame.
  • Transfer the contents to a mixie jar and when cooled prepare a paste adding required amount of water.
  • Heat a tbsp of oil in the skillet used for sauteeing the masala and add the chopped onions and saute until it turns golden
  • meanwhile heat another pan(preferably non-stick)with a tbsp of oil and add the blended masala and saute for 5-10 minutes stirring in between till the
  • raw flavour fades away and also some oil gets shown.
  • Once the onions are golden add the chopped bell pepper and saute for few seconds.
  • Add the peas and give a nice stir.cover and cook adding little water till they are soft.
  • Add the tomatoes and saute till they become soft and mushy.
  • Add salt,kitchen king masala,little kasoori methi and stir.
  • Add the sauteed masala from the other pan,water to get a curry consistency and bring to boil.
  • Add the cubed paneer and let cook for 3-4 minutes covered.
  • Finally add kasoori methi(rubbing on your palms a little) and garam masala powder and switch off the flame.
  • Cover the lid to retain the flavour

Gobi Ka Paratha-Stuffed Cauliflower Flatbread

This is a North Indian staple eaten as breakfast/lunch/dinner.It is a filling food with balanced nutrition.These parathas serve as an excellent food during travel.I love to make stuffed parathas as I need not think for an accompaniment with this as it tastes best served with a blob of butter,curd,pickle and so on... that are always in stock at my kitchen shelf/refrigerator.
It is very simple and easy one which takes time to get practiced(initially all flatbreads were time consuming and I used to feel panicked) so with a little practice and patience and you can win over everyone at home.Do try this out and impress everyone at home.Will most more varieties of stuffed parathas in the days to come..So,enjoy Garam garam Gobi Ke Parathe..don't forget to add butter on top while serving.

For the Dough:
Whole wheat flour                     2cups
Salt                                                   1/2tsp
Water                                              to knead the dough
Oil                                                     1/2tsp
For the Stuffing:
Cauliflower**,grated                                   4cups
(A small head)
Finely chopped onions                                1/2cup
Finely chopped coriander leaves           1tbsp
Red chilli powder                                         1tsp
Dhania(coriander)powder                      1/2tsp
Turmeric(haldi)                                           1/4tsp
Garam masala powder                             1/2tsp
Cumin seeds(jeera)                                    1/2tsp
Oil                                                                     1-2tsp.
Salt                                                                  to taste
More ingredients:
Oil/ghee(clarified butter)  as required while roasting parathas.

  • Take a mixing bowl and addthe flour and salt and mix it dry.
  • Make a well in the centre and add 1/2cup of water and gently mix and knead to form a semi stiff dough by adding required additional water if necessary.
  • Divide into 12 equal portions.
Preparing the Stuffing-
  • Heat a pan preferably a non-stick pan (as it requires less oil)add the oil.
  • Toss in the jeera followed by onions,saute for a minute.
  • Add the grated cauliflower and sauté on medium flame till the raw flavour fades away(takes about 10 minutes)sautéing in between.
  • Add all the rest of powder ingredients including salt and give a stir.
  • Saute for another 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the fresh chopped coriander ,mix well and switch off the flame.
  • Let it cool down.
  • Make 12 equal portions.

Making of parathas-
  • Take a ball of dough and flatten into  a small circle with a rolling pin
  • Place the prepared portion of stuffing at the centre.
  • Bring together all the sides to the center carefully and seal tightly.
  • Roll into a circle(6") again dusting flour on the workspace.
  • Heat a griddle and cook the paratha using ghee/oil until golden brown spots appear on both sides.
  • Repeat the procedure for the remaining parathas
  • Serve hot with curds(yogurt),pickle of your choice or Flax seed chutney powder.
The collage of making the parathas-
  • Cauliflowers usually have worms in them and are also exposed to harmful chemical sprays while they are grown.
  • Always cut into florets,wash in water then soak in a bowl of water dissolved with a tsp or two of salt and soak for 30 minutes.
  • Drain,rinse again in 2-3 changes of water.
  • Drain in a colander,and spread on a towel to get rid of the excess moisture.

Sabut Masoor Ki Daal-Brown Lentil Spicy Soup(Daal)

Daals are a staple in Indian maincourse.It is prepared all over the country using different lentils and sometimes even mixing a couple of them.The method of preparing differs from region to region.This is a one prepared from brown lentil which is called sabut masoor in Hindi,(sabut means whole) and masoori in Konkani.An easy to prepare one which can be served with rice or rotis or can have it in a bowl like soup,choice is yours!!

Masoor daal(brown lentil)               1/2cup
Onion(M),chopped                               1
Tomato(M),chopped                           1
Green chilli                                             1
Ginger chopped                                    1tsp
Garlic chopped                                     1tsp
salt                                                            to taste

For Tempering:
Cumin(jeera)seeds                            1tsp
Coriander(dhaniya)powder         1/2tsp
Red chilli powder                              3/4tsp
Turmeric                                               1/4tsp
Asafoetida(hing)                               a pinch
Oil                                                            2-3tsp

  • Wash masoor and soak in pressure cooker for 1hour.
  • Make a coarse paste of ginger garlic and green chilli using a mortar and pestle.
  • Add chopped onion,toamto,coarse paste and pressure cook adding about 1.5 cups of water.
  • Pressure cook for 1 whistle ,then lower the flame and cook for 10 more minutes.
  • When cooked, whisk the pressure cooked contents well and transfer into a soup pot.
  • Add salt and bring to boil.
  • In a small seasoning pan heat oil and toss in jeera ,when sizzles add the remaining ingredients and pour over the boiling daal.
  • Add fine chopped coriander leaves and boil for 1 more minute.
  • Serve hot with rice,rotis.
A look of Masoor(brown lentil)-

Serving Idea-
(Masoor daal served with ajwain(carom seeds/bishops weed)paratha & Soya chunk aloo aur palak ki subzi)


Mixed Vegetable Sagu-Mixed Vegetables Cooked In A Coconut Based Sauce with Spices :)

Here is an interesting recipe made with a combination of vegetables cooked with a masala prepared with coconut and other spices.This is a  common and versatile dish among the Kannadigas.There are umpteen number of recipes for this particular dish.Ihave followed my own method which was a nice one.This sagu tastes so good that it serves as  a perfect accompaniment with dosa,rava idli,poori,rotis,etc.and even good with plain white rice.

Cauliflower florets               1.5cups
Boiled/cubed potatoes        1/2cup
Fresh/frozen peas                 1/4cup
Carrots,cubed                         1/4cup

For Masala:
Fresh/frozen coconut           1/2cup
Green chillies                           2-3
Ginger(chopped)                    1/4tsp
Garlic(chopped)                     1/4tsp
Oni opped)                               2tbsp
Black pe  orns                          1/2tsp
Cinnamon                                 a small piece
Poppy seeds                             1/2tsp
Cloves                                         2-3
Cashewnuts                              1tbsp
Roasted gram                          1tbsp
Coriander leaves                    4-5sprigs
Tamarind                                   size of a peanut
For seasoning:
Mustard seeds                         1/2tsp
Curry leaves                            4-6
Chopped onion                       1/2cup
Chopped tomato(M)            1 nos
Turmeric(haldi)                    1/2tsp
Oil                                               1tbsp+1tsp
Salt                                             to taste

  • Boil carrots and peas first in a pot adding water,once tender add the cauliflower florets and cook for 5 more minutes sprinkling salt.Cover a nd set
  • it aside.
  • Heat 1tsp oil in a wok/kadai and add cinnamon,cloves,poppy seeds,cashewnuts and roasted gram and saute for few seconds till colour changes slightly.
  • Add slit green chillies,chopped ginger,garlic and onion and saute for another 1 minute.
  • Add grated coconut,coriader leaves(chop roughly),saute for 30 more seconds,add tamarind and switch off the flame.
  • When the roasted ingredients are completely cooled take this in a blending jar and pulse it dry first,then blend to smooth chutney consistency adding
  • required amount of water.
  • In the same wok/kadai heat 1 tbsp oil and add mustard,once crackling stops add curry leaves and onion and saute till becomes translucent.
  • Add chopped tomatoes ,sprinkle little salt,aslo add turmeric powder(haldi)and saute till tomatoes are mushy.
  • Now add the boiled vegetables(reserve water/stock,use for texture adjustments later),additional salt to taste,little water from the reserved stock
  • and bring to a nice boil.
  • Add the prepared masala and cook for another 5-7minutes.Do the adjustments with the consistency(should be like kurma or any othet coconut based curry
  • texture)
Serve with poori,chapathi,rava idli,etc., garnished with fresh chopped coriander/cilantro.
Any combination of vegetables may be used(2-3 varieties also make a good combo)