Friday, 31 October 2014

Punjabi Tori...Boooooooo!!!

Punjabi Toriand Happy Halloween!! Yes, you heard me right!! While the world is busy dressing up scary and putting up fancy-schmancy stuff all over the internetThis is how I will scare my man!! Like most ‘normal’ people, he hates Ghiya/Tori type of veggies and like most ‘special’ people, I love that stuffto me nothing can taste better than a well cooked ghiya/tori (and this one tastes fabulous without an overdose of spices) and to him, nothing can be scarierSo there, a very special Happy Halloween to My Man!!



Smooth Gourd curry mmskitchenbites




Punjabi Tori (Smooth Gourd Curry)


Ingredients:

  • Tori/Smooth Gourd, washed, peeled and cut into 1 cm roundels, about 2 cups
  • Onion, finely chopped, 1 small
  • Tomato, finely chopped, 1 small
  • Ginger, grated/finely minced, ½ tsp
  • Kashmiri Red Chili powder, ½ tsp
  • Turmeric powder, ¼ tsp
  • Cumin seeds, ¼ tsp
  • Salt, per taste
  • Ghee/Oil, 1 tbsp


Instructions:

Heat oil in a pan on medium high heat. Add cumin seeds and let them crackle.

Add onions and fry till they turn soft. Add in the ginger, tomato, kashmiri red chili powder, turmeric, salt and mix well.

Once the tomatoes start going soft, tip in the tori and mix so that the masala coats the tori well.

Cover and let it cook in its own water on low heat for about 5-7 minutes till the tori gets cooked.


Serve hot with roti or rice.

Notes:

and here is picture from the internet to show which veggie I am talking about...

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Vaghareli Mori Dal/Parsi Tempered Yellow Tur Dal...thanks again K

Vaghareli Mori Dal...better known as the Parsi Everyday Dal but in our home it is called K’s Dal Jadopted Kainaaz’s recipe from IFF, the tempering is the same as what we normally use at home but the sieving of the dal to get that smooth texture was new...always done for soups but never for dals that are served with main course...tried it and since then a regular at dinnerThanks again K!!



Parsi Yellow Tur Dal mmskitchenbites



Vaghareli Mori Dal (Parsi Yellow Tur Dal)


Ingredients: 

  • Arhar/Tur/Split Pigeon Peas or Masoor dal/Red lentils, 1 cup   (K’s recipe specified Arhar dal)
  • Turmeric powder, ½ tsp
  • Salt, to taste
  • Water, about 2 1/2 - 3 cups
  • Garlic, 4-5 pods, finely sliced into thin rounds
  • Cumin seeds, ½ tsp
  • Fresh green chilies, 1-2, finely chopped (optional)
  • Ghee/ Butter/Oil, 1 tbsp (or more J )
  • Finely sliced and crisp fried Onion, (optional)


Instructions:


Wash the dal till water runs clear and soak it for about half an hour.

Drain the dal and pressure cook with water, salt and turmeric till soft and mushy(if cooking in a pan, please adjust water quantity accordingly)

When the cooker cools down, remove dal and either pass thorough a fine mesh sieve or liquify using an immersion blender. The texture of the dal needs to be smooth, thick and pourable.

For tempering, heat ghee in a small pan over medium heat. Add cumin seeds and when they start sizzling, add in garlic and green chilies, if using.  Fry the garlic till it turns crisp and golden brown.

Add the tempering to the dal and mix well. Top up with fried onion or if skipping onion, save a few garlic slices from tempering to top up.

Serve hot with main course or as soup


Parsi Everyday Tur Dal mmskitchenbites



Notes:

Pictures of the dals to help identify...

Arhar/Tur/Split Pigeon Peas

Masoor Dal/Red Lentils






Monday, 27 October 2014

Green Beans Thoran/ Green Beans Stir Fried With Coconut...Kerala, take 2, action!!

Green Beans Thoran (Green Beans Stir Fried With Coconut)...transferred to a new post from an old one...this needed to an updated picture and also needed a separate post of its own


French Beans Thoran mmskitchenbites




Green Beans Thoran (Green Beans Stir Fried With Coconut)


Ingredients: 

  • Green/French beans, finely chopped, about 1 cup
  • Onions, finely chopped, about ¼  cup
  • Urad dal,/skinned and split black lentils/white lentils, 1 tsp  (optional if using peanuts, if skipping peanut do add for that crunch)
  • Mustard seeds, ½ tsp
  • Green chillies, finely chopped, 1-2
  • Salt, to taste
  • Turmeric, a pinch
  • Roasted peanuts, coarsely crushed, about 1-2 tbsp (optional)
  • Fresh Coconut, grated or shredded, 2-3 tbsp
  • Water, a teaspoon or so only if required
  • Oil, ½ -1 tbsp (preferably coconut oil or else oil of your choice)



Instructions:


Heat oil in a pan and add urad dal followed by mustard seeds.

When the dal gets light brown and mustard seeds start popping add onions and green chillies.

Stir well. When the onions go soft (don’t let them turn brown) , add the beans, salt and turmeric. Cook covered on low flame till the beans are cooked – you can sprinkle a little water, if required.

Do not cover the beans completely or overcook as the beans will lose colour and texture.

Add in the grated coconut – mix well and cook for another couple of minutes.

Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle with crushed roasted peanuts. Serve with rice or roti.


Notes:


  • You are supposed to use shallots, I didn’t have any so used regular onion.
  • You are supposed to add curry leaves in the tempering or later, I don’t like the taste of curry leaves with green beans so skipped
  • You can coarsely grind the shallots/onions with coconut and green chillies and can either fry this paste first before adding the beans.
  • I like to add peanuts but they are never ever used otherwise J


Sunday, 26 October 2014

Chawal Ki Kheer/ Rice Kheer/ Indian Rice pudding...sparkle and shine, forever!!

Chawal Ki Kheer/ Rice Kheer (Indian Rice pudding)and my Diwali posts end with this one!! None of that added condensed milk to hasten the processor using cooked ricethis is just the way mom makes it J









Chawal Ki Kheer/ Rice Kheer (Indian Rice pudding)


Ingredients:


  • Whole/Full fat milk, 1.5 litre
  • Rice, ¼ cup (a smaller grain would do, I use Basmati)
  • Sugar, 4 – 5 tbsp or to taste
  • Green Cardamom, 4, bruised lightly to break open (or use cardamom powder, a little less than ½ tsp)
  • Kaju/Cashews, plain unsalted, 10-12, broken into 2- 3 pieces (optional)
  • Badaam/Almonds, 10-12, blanched, skin removed and sliced (optional)
  • Kishmish/Golden raisins, 10-12, washed and rinsed (optional)
  • Kesar/Saffron, 1 pinch (optional, refer to notes)



Instructions:


Wash the rice till the water runs clears and then soak in ample amount of water for 30 minutes. Drain the rice and keep aside.

Take a wide heavy bottom pan and on medium high heat bring the milk to boil.

Reduce the heat and add the rice and green cardamoms. (if using cardamom powder, add it towards the end with the raisins etc)

Let them simmer on low heat but keep stirring intermittently so that the milk and rice don’t stick to the bottom or the sides of the pan. Keep on scraping the sides of the dried up milk and mix it back into the milk. 

There is no smell or taste worse than that of burnt milk so please do remember to stir every couple of minutes.

In about 35-40 minutes the milk would have reduced and thickened and the rice would be almost done as well.

Add the sugar and cashews, almonds and raisins if using (you can easily skip all or any of these if you want, I don’t add raisins in mine since neither one of us likes them).

Once the sugar starts melting the milk would get a little thinner. So stir and let it cook for another 15-20 minutes or till it reaches your desired consistency.

Transfer to a serving dish and serve hot, warm or chilled and remember to sparkle and shine...always!! J


Notes:


  • The kheer will continue to thicken as it cools/chills in the refrigerator. Keep that in mind if planning to serve chilled. If it has thickened too much for your liking, mix a little milk and stir well before serving.
  • I have not used saffron as I like the colour without it. If you want to add saffron, you can add it when you add sugar.
  • If using cardamoms pods, fish them out before transferring to the serving dish.

Friday, 24 October 2014

Baked Mathri...Three Pepper Sisters!!!

Baked Mathri or Baked Salted Crackers if you pleasetypically deep fried, I converted Mom’s regular mathri recipe to a baked one as I didn’t want to make the effort of deep frying them and dealing with all that left over oil...not as good as the fried version but pretty yum nonetheless J





Baked Mathri/Baked Salted crackers



Ingredients:


  • Maida/All purpose flour, 1 cup or Atta/Whole wheat flour, 1 cup or half cup of each
  • Suji/Semolina, ¼ cup
  • Baking powder, ½ tsp
  • Salt, ¾ tsp or to taste
  • Cumin seeds, ½ tsp
  • Hing/Asafoetida, ¼ tsp (optional)
  • Black Pepper, freshly ground, ¾ tsp
  • Fresh green chilies, chopped, 2-3
  • Fresh red chilies, chopped, 2-3 (or substitute with red chili flakes)
  • Melted Ghee or Oil, 3 tbsp if using maida and 4 tbsp if using atta
  • Water to knead the dough (I used a little more than ¼ cup)


Instructions:


Take a mixing bowl and combine all the dry ingredients. Add the ghee/oil and mix with your fingertips for about 4-5 minutes.

Start adding water a tablespoon at a time and bring the dough together to fairly stiff dough without kneading too much. Cover the dough with a damp cloth or plastic wrap and keep aside for 10 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Lightly grease a baking tray with oil spray or oil.

Divide the dough into two parts.

Roll out the dough into a little less than ¼ “ thickness flat disc and then cut them into desired shapes using cookie cutter or knife.

Prick them a fork all over and place them on the prepared baking tray.

Bake in a preheated oven for 20 minutes on one side and then flip and bake for about 5 more minutes.

Transfer to a wire rack and once cool, store in an airtight container.

Serve with tea, pickle or any chutney/dip of your choice.

Notes:


Other flavoring you can use:
  • Ajwain/carom seeds, Kasoori Methi/Dried Fenugreek leaves and Black pepper
  • Ajwain/carom seeds and Black pepper
  • Kalonji/Nigella seeds and Black pepper
  • Italian seasoning and Black pepper
  • Red chili flakes and Oregano
  • Add some sesame seeds or flax seeds to the dough
  • Add some ginger paste to the dough

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Microwave Besan Laddoos...Happy Diwali and second chances!

Microwave Besan LaddoosI made it!! My first ever festival post on the blog and my first ever laddoosand with that wish you and yours a very Happy Diwali...May you shine and sparkle this festive season and alwaysbut knowing me, the first ever couldn’t be without any drama now, could it?? I had to do a quick version as knowing me you know I couldn’t stand over the stove forever roasting the flourRead up on a few microwave recipes and then tried the recipe from a very famous site but alas the proportions didn’t work and the laddoos just wouldn’t stay in shapechanged the proportions and here is my version belowif you try them promise you will end up with laddoos and not pedasand if you don’t...a plate of laddoos from me J



Microwave Besan Laddoos



Ingredients:

  • Besan/Gram flour/Chickpea flour, 1 cup (the packet besan that I used to get back home and even here is a “fine” one and not “grainy” which is popular in a few regions in India)
  • Suji/Semolina, ¼ cup
  • Desi Ghee/Clarified butter, melted and then measured, 1/3 cup
  • Granulated Sugar, 1/3 cup
  • Green Cardamoms, 3


Instructions:


Put the sugar in the dry grinder/mixer with green cardamoms and ground it to a powder. Keep aside.

Mix besan and suji in a microwavable tray/plate.  Add ghee to it and mix well with a spoon.

Now microwave the mix for 4 minutes. Stirring and mixing well every one minute.
The timing will differ according to your microwave – I have a smaller microwave here so mine got done in 6 minutes, the recipes I have seen on the internet vary the time from 3 to 5 minutes. I would suggest checking and stirring every 30 seconds after the mandatory 4 minutes.

You will know when it is done when the mix changes colour from yellow to pale golden brown and the aroma of the roasted besan fills your kitchen J

Remove and let the mix cool completely (remember cool and not cold!! Or else you will not be able to bind. If the mix gets too cold and starts to solidify a little, microwave for 5-10 seconds but do this before adding the sugar and not after). Once done, add in the sugar and mix well.

Divide the mix into 8 portions. Shape each portion into a round ball by firmly binding the portion in the palm of your hand and then rolling between your palms.

You can garnish the laddoos with almonds, pistachios, cashews or raisins or let them be as is.

Let the laddoos rest on a lightly greased plate for about half an hour and then are ready to serve