Thursday, 27 March 2014

Onion Raita/ Dahi Kanda/ Yogurt and Onion Relish



Onion Raita/ Dahi Kanda/ Yogurt and Onion Relish
 
Onion Raita/ Dahi Kanda/ Yogurt and Onion Relish
Onion Raita/ Dahi Kanda/ Yogurt and Onion Relish
 This is an easy and delicious raita goes well with any dish and is a perfect accompaniment to the  Chicken curry I posted yesterday or with  Chicken Biryani
A meal would remain incomplete without a relish or a raita which really adds to the flavor and is especially cooling with spicy food.

So here’s what you need,
Ingredients:
2 onions
½ green chilly
½ cup yogurt
Salt to taste
1 tsp Lemon juice (optional)
Coriander to garnish
Method:
Slice the onions and remove seeds from the chilly (I used only half of the chilly but it’s easier to remove seeds from the entire chilly) and chop finely.
De seed the Chilly
De seed the Chilly

Transfer the onions to a bowl, add salt (I used half tsp) and lemon juice and leave aside until ready to use. 
This adds to the flavor and removes the rawness of the onions.
Stir in salt and lemon juice
Stir in salt and lemon juice

Remove any liquid from the onions, stir in the yoghurt and chopped green chilly.
Garnish with coriander and serve!

Onion Raita/ Dahi Kanda/ Yogurt and Onion Relish
Onion Raita/ Dahi Kanda/ Yogurt and Onion Relish




Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Kolhapuri Chicken/ Masala Chicken curry



Kolhapuri Chicken/ Masala Chicken curry
 A spicy chicken curry.
 
Kolhapuri Chicken/ Masala Chicken Curry
Kolhapuri Chicken/ Masala Chicken Curry



Disclaimer: This is not an authentic Kolhapuri chicken curry, as there is no oil floating  on the top of the curry. Neither is it a curry that will burst your head, but still spicy enough to tingle your taste bud 

 Whether Chilies( contain more vitamin C than an orange)  have any health benefits are not they are still my favorite, However  they can make or break your dish, add too much and it will mask all the flavors.

  So here’s a recipe full of flavors yet very balanced, there’s  juicy tender chicken and wonderfully flavored chicken stock, which will take your curry experience to an all new level  I promise!



Serves:  4

Ingredients:

Chicken( on the bone) – 500 g
2 Large onions
2 Tomato’s
Ginger-size of one 1 garlic clove
Garlic- 3 cloves
Dalchini-1no
Clove- 2
Til/ Sesame seeds- 2 tsp
Green Cardamom-1
Fresh coconut – 2 tsp
Coriander powder- 1 tsp
Fresh coriander- small bunch or a hand full
Kaju / Cashew nuts- 2


Whole red Chilly – 1 or
Kashmiri red Chilly powder- 1tsp or
Kolhapuri Chutney – 1 tsp.

Oil for deep frying onions plus more for cooking.


Step 1:
Pressure cook chicken (along with water enough to cover the chicken about 1and ½ cup) and salt to taste. One to two whistles.  Once the pressure settles, remove the chicken and the stock, leave aside.

Step 2:
Masala

1. Fry sliced onions, keep aside (2 big onions)
2. Roast whole garam masala on a tawa for 2 Min ( till golden and fragrant), keep aside
Roasted  whole garam masala
Roasted Masala

3. Combine all the above ingredients, ginger garlic, coriander, whole red chilly (if using), cashew nuts, tomatoes and blend to make a thin paste (add a little water if required)
Masala paste
Masala


 Method:
    1. Sauté the masala in  3 tbsp. of oil in a pressure cooker till brown and till oil begins to separate, add salt to taste and Kashmiri red chili powder ( skip this if you don’t want it spicy) and cook for 2 whistles ( to get rid of the raw taste, adding a little chicken stock from step1 )
    2.To the pressure cooker with masala add the chicken pieces and remaining stock, cook for one more whistle, garnish with freshly chopped coriander and some lemon juice just before serving. Tastes great on its own or with some rice and dahi kanda( onion raita).


Masala Chicken curry with rice
Masala Chicken curry with rice


Notes:

You can add only a spoon full of stock to the masala and transform it to a gravy dish rather than a curry
If using boneless chicken skip the step 1, and add water to cook the masala or use a stock cube.
Don’t have a pressure cooker, just sauté  till a nice brown color and simmer for 15min.

Monday, 24 March 2014

Potato Wraps with mint chutney/ Bombay Aloo Frankie/ Veg Frankie

Potato Wraps with mint chutney/ Bombay Aloo Frankie/ Veg Wraps
Potato Wraps/ Bombay Aloo Frankie/ Veg Frankie
Potato Wraps/ Bombay Aloo Frankie/ Veg Frankie

Indian flat bread made with plain flour, stuffed with potato and veggies, a delicious snack or help yourself supper.
Potato Wrap
Potato Wraps/ Bombay Aloo Frankie/ Veg Frankie

I haven’t posted something for a long time and that’s because I have just been up to something crazy that you’ll soon find out, and the other reason is I have been busy cleaning  or should I say spring cleaning. I love cleaning as much as I love cooking, with a difference of getting cleaning swings just like mood swings and I have to have to clean. But nothing lasts forever, and so I have to admit it’s still quite messy only a little less cluttered.  Speaking of cluttered, takes me back to the streets of   Borivali station, where every evening on my way back from work I waited  in the busy  crowded station filled with people, children, stalls  and  what not ( in other words cluttered) to have  my favorite Bombay aloo sandwich.  To be honest I did not mind the wait at all, it was so good, and so was the owner he knew by default what I was going to order. Not to mention, this recipe is inspired by the street food of Mumbai.

It’s simple, delicious and you can add your own variations. Make your own wraps from a scratch or buy ready-made chapattis or tortillas. Same goes for the mint chutney. 
Frankie Dough
Frankie Dough 

However you choose to make it, please don’t forget the most important element of this veggie Frankie, potato and green pepper filling, cos you will love it.
Potato and Green Pepper ( capsicum) Filling
Potato and Green Pepper ( capsicum) Filling


And since I always add a few of my own touches to the dish, which are not essential but are fun; cut your cucumber into match sticks. Stack up sliced cucumbers and cut diagonally to make thin match sticks.
This would prevent your Frankie from tearing up, plus it looks pretty on the platter.
 

Cucumber chopped into match sticks
Cucumber Match sticks



Makes: 6

Ingredients:
Potato- 3 no’s,
Green Pepper/ Capsicum- 1 , Sliced
Onion- 1, finely chopped
Mustard seeds-½ tsp
Cumin seeds-½ tsp
Green Chilly – ½ finely chopped
Ginger shredded- ½ tsp.
Turmeric- 1/2tsp
Coriander powder- ½ tsp
Garam Masala- ½ tsp
Oil – 1 tbsp.
Salt to taste

For serving:
Mint Chutney
Tomato Ketchup
Shredded Lettuce
Cucumber
Coriander/ Cilantro
Chaat Masala or Lemon
Cheese (optional)
Tortillas/ Chapatti - 6
Or

For the Maida roti/ wrap (makes -6):
Plain flour/ Maida- ½ cup + extra for kneading and rolling out rotis/ wraps.
Whole wheat flour – 3 tbsp.
Oil – 1 tsp
Yogurt/ curd – 1 heaped tbsp.
Salt – ½ tsp.
Water to knead dough


Method:

To make the wraps:
Mix the plain flour, wheat flour, oil, yogurt and salt. Add water a tbsp. at a time to make the dough.
Cover with a damp cloth and leave aside. (15 min to an hour, resting the dough makes it more pliable)
Dust some flour on the work top, and knead the dough.
Make dough balls, and roll out the dough evenly (about the thickness of chapatti or tortilla)
Heat the griddle/ tawa/pan; cook in on medium to high heat, just until both sides are cooked.
Place in a foil, and smear some oil or butter if you like.
Wraps/Maida roti
 


For the filling:
Boil the potatoes (or pressure cook for 3 whistles) just until cooked, peel and dice.
Heat a tbsp. of oil in a pan, add mustard and cumin seeds allow to splutter, add the onions, green chilly, ginger and sauté for a minute.
Stir in the green peppers, cook for 3 to 4 minutes, (it should remain crispy, crunchy and green).
Finally add the potatoes, spices and salt to taste sauté for a few more minutes and leave aside.

To serve:
Chop and place the salad, mint chutney, ketchup in bowls and let everyone make their own wraps with their choice and quantity of fillings or
make your own wraps
Fillings

 Smear the wrap/ roti with mint chutney, place the filling in the center, top it with salad, sprinkle over chaat masala, and some ketchup. Fold it and seal one end with silver foil and serve!

 
make your own wraps
Make your own wraps


   

 
Bombay Aloo Frankie
Bombay Aloo Frankie

Monday, 17 March 2014

Simply Great Juice review and a Pomegranate Banana Smoothie on the go.


Simply Great Juice review and a Pomegranate Banana Smoothie on the go.

Simply Great Juice ( PomeGreat Juice/ Pomegranate juice)

As this is my first review I thought let me start with something great and when  Simply Great offered me a chance to review their product, I thought why not.  Simply great is a new range of fruit juices from the maker of Pomegreat, containing super fruits. They come in three different flavours Pomegranate, Mango and Cranberry.
Simply Great Juice ( PomeGreat Juice/ Pomegranate juice) Review
Simply Great Juice ( PomeGreat Juice/ Pomegranate juice)

I tried one of their famous range, Pomegreat juice or Pomegranate juice. Pomoegreat (pomegranate juice) is distributed in tetra packs and features their very own super hero characters, this deep red liquid looks and tastes delicious.  The idea behind simply great or super fruit juices, is that it contains 100% natural sweeteners and is packed full of vitamins, antioxidants and other nutrients. And I recently came across this Article  on the daily mail, where simply great has claimed that it contains a compound called Pinitol ( derived from the flower bougainveillea), that can counteract the negative effects of sugar. Pomegrate would naturally appeal to those who have grown tired of juices laden with sugar and artificial colors and flavors. 

Simply Great Juice ( PomeGreat Juice/ Pomegranate juice) review
Simply Great Juice ( PomeGreat Juice/ Pomegranate juice)



  In general, I remain skeptical of whether or not it has any effects on blood sugar, but yes, Pomegreat lives up to its claims of challenging the nation to find the superhero within and feel simply great.  It comes in a tetra pack, and the packaging could be a little better. It costs around £ 2.15/ unit. It’s available at all major supermarkets nationwide. You can also buy it online from Sainsbury’s. Pomegrate does supply the nutrients and antioxidants in a delicious way that’s making me feel like a Super hero or in other words simply great.

Banana and Pomegranate smoothie.
 Here’s a super quick recipe for a smoothie on the go for those busy mornings when you don’t have time for breakfast. I did not use any sugar as I added Pomegreat which adds to the sweetness and to the flavor of the smoothie.
Serves: 1
Ingredients:
Frozen banana (or Peeled banana and ice cubes) - 1
Pomegranate juice (I used PomeGreat) - ½ cup
Yogurt -2 tbsp.
Berries /Nuts for garnishing (optional)

Method:
Blend all the ingredients (Banana, yogurt and juice) till a nice smooth and frothy mixture.Transfer to a glass or to your on the go cup

 Banana and Pomegranate smoothie.

Banana and Pomegranate smoothie.

 Garnish with your choice of berries or nuts and …Slurp, I mean Serve.
 Banana and Pomegranate smoothie.

Banana and Pomegranate smoothie.


 
 Banana and Pomegranate smoothie, garnished with nuts

Banana and Pomegranate smoothie.
Notes:
Peeling and Freezing bananas cuts down the time in the morning, perfect when the bananas are too ripe so you don’t have to feel sorry about throwing them.
Pomegrate juice adds just enough sweetness, but you could add honey or sugar as per taste.
Yogurt can be replaced with milk.








Monday, 10 March 2014

Tawa Bhaji / Crispy Masala okra and potatoes / Aloo Bhindi

Tawa Bhaji / Crispy Masala okra and potatoes / Aloo Bhindi

 Spiced Okra and potatoes
Tawa Bhaji / Crispy Masala okra and potatoes / Aloo Bhindi
Tawa Bhaji with Phulka

 Tawa bhaji as the name suggests is a bhaji/ sabji made on the tawa/griddle/pan. What is misleading about this name is it might sound like a pan fried dish but it’s not, it requires deep frying. Which is inevitable considering it’s a Sindhi delicacy. 


Another crucial step is covering the veggies with a heat proof flat plate or lid and placing some weight on it for incorporating all the spices into the veggies. Over the years I have skipped this step and simply cover it with a normal lid. My Mom does it differently, she microwaves  it for 5 minutes just before serving, which is amazingly easy.

Tawa Bhaji / Crispy Masala okra and potatoes / Aloo Bhindi
Tawa Bhaji
No matter what step you decide to follow, I can assure you it will turn out amazing. It is one dish that has gone down well with everyone be it my family or friends. And since this recipe reminds me and my friends of our tiffin’s swapping days, this recipe is dedicated to my dear friends J

Serves: 4


Ingredients:
Vegetables( or use your choice of veggies):
6 potatoes
12nos Okra/ Bhindi

Masala/ spices ( increase or decrease as per taste):
Turmeric - ½ tsp
Garam Masala-½ tsp
Dry Mango Powder-½ tsp
Chilly Powder-½ tsp

Salt to taste

Oil for deep frying

Method:

Wash and dry potatoes and okra,

Dry with a kitchen towel, split the okra/ Bhindi and make cuts in the potato( as shown in the image).
Slitting Okra
Slitting okra

making diamond shaped slits
Making slits in potatoes

Heat oil for deep frying,  to test if the oil is ready add a piece of bread, if it turns golden its ready if its burnt it is  too hot for frying anything.
Bread turns golden, oil is ready
How to test, if oil is ready for deep frying


Start frying, beginning with potatoes, till they turn golden brown. Follow the same with okra/ Bhindi. Drain and transfer to a kitchen towel/ absorbent paper.
Fried Potatoes
Add caption

Crispy fried Okra

Mix the masalas/spices with salt, sprinkle/ fill the masala in the slits of fried potatoes and okra and place or arrange on the tawa.
Tawa Bhaji / Crispy Masala okra and potatoes / Aloo Bhindi
Tawa Bhaji

Finally, Sprinkle a table spoon of water on the tawa,cover the tawa with a lid or a plate with heavy weight on top of it and cook on a very low flame for 10 Min or until cooked.
Tawa Bhaji / Crispy Masala okra and potatoes / Aloo Bhindi
Tawa Bhaji

Serve hot with Phulka
Tawa Bhaji / Crispy Masala okra and potatoes / Aloo Bhindi
Tawa Bhaji


    Notes:
      1.You can also use other vegetables like Aubergines, Capsicum or peppers ( cut into slices)
      2. Spice level can be adjusted as per taste.
      3. Placing weight on a flat plate, makes the veggies crispy.