Sunday, October 4, 2015


Burgers have always been a favourite choice of everyone among the fast food, specially kids. One can easily make them at home without much effort with basic veggies always available in every kitchen. If you are fond of baking you should bake the buns at home too as they are much healthier without any preservatives added to them for increasing the shelf life. So make and enjoy your home made burgers with your choice of accompaniments and sauces and chips or French fries.

Burger buns ... as required (see the recipe for home made buns - HERE )
Potatoes ... 2 small
Carrots ..... 1 small
Green peas .. 1/2 cup
Fresh bread crumbs .. 1/4 cup + a little for coating.
Dry mint leaves ... 1/2 tsp (or few fresh leaves chopped finely)
Chilli powder ..... 1/2 tsp (adjust as you like)
Cumin powder ... 1/2 tsp
Salt .................. to taste
Oil .... to fry

For toppings:
Lettuce leaves - as needed
Carrot ......... grated
Mayonnaise .. 1 tbsp
Chilli sauce or tomato ketchup
Onion slices
Tomato slices
Sliced cheese (optional)
Cherry tomato .. for garnishing

1. Boil the vegetables and mash them.
2. Add salt, cumin powder, chilli powder, mint leaves, salt and bread crumbs. Mix well.
3. Make cutlets and coat them with bread crumbs. Fry them and set aside.
4. Make a salad with grated carrots, chopped lettuce leaves and mayonnaise.
5. Slice the burger buns and place the lettuce leaf on each base.
6. Keep a tomato slice and spoon some salad over it.
7. Place a fried burger and a slice of onion. Spoon some sauce of your choice.
8. Place the bun slice and garnish using a sate stick and cherry tomato.

Saturday, October 3, 2015


Goda masala is a spice mix used in Maharashtra and the neighbouring states. It is also popularly known as Kala masala (meaning black spice) probably because of the dark colour.The proportion of the ingredients varies from region to region and each home has a tried and tested unique blend to suit their taste.

Unlike other spice powders here we use a little oil to fry the whole spices before grinding which gives the blackish colour to the blend. The key ingredients in this are sesame seeds and dry dessicated coconut which are just dry roasted as they already have oil content. The dry roasting brings out the colour and flavour in them. There are a couple of ingredients in this spice like nag kesar and niger seeds which are not easily available every where. I have skipped adding them.

Goda masala is added to most of the Maharashtrian dishes but in small quantities along with the souring agents like kokums. It is not a spicy powder so the chilli content is also adjusted during cooking according to the personal preferences. Some of the popular dishes made with this masala are Vangi Bhath, Mashale bhath, Dal amti, Matki usal, Bharli vangi, papdi bhaji etc etc.. and also non veg curries.

Ingredients for frying:
Coriander seeds .. 8-10 tbsps
Cumin seeds ....... 2 tbsps
Caraway seeds / shahjeera ... 2 tbsps
Dagad Phool / stone flower ... 3 tbsps
Dry red chillies .............. 6
Black pepper ... 1/2 tbsp
Cloves ............ 20 - 25
Cinnamon ....... 4-5 one inch pieces
Black cardamoms .. 4
Green cardamoms ... 6
Bay leaves .............. 6
Star anise ................ 4
Oil ............. 4 tsps

Ingredients for dry roasting:
Dessicated coconut ... 6 tbsps
Sesame seeds / til .... 6 tbsps
Khuskhus / poppy seeds .. 1 tbsp (optional)

1. Heat 2 tsps oil in a pan and fry the whole spices like cardamoms, bay leaves, cloves, cinnamon, star anise and dagad phool on medium / low flame until they give out a nice aroma. Remove and set aside.
2. Heat the remaining 2 tsps oil and fry the cumin seeds, caraway seeds and coriander seeds in the same way.
3. In the same pan dry roast the dessicated coconut, sesame seeds, poppy seeds and dry red chillies, each one separately. Allow them to cool.
4. Mix all these ingredients and grind them in a coffee grinder in 5-6 batches.

Store the masala in a dry sterilized container.

Note: if you like you can add the salt, turmeric powder and asafoetida before storing or you may add them while cooking.

Friday, October 2, 2015


Pao de queijo (cheese bread) is a very popular snack / breakfast bread of Brazil. It is available in all the coffee shops, restaurants, eateries and people prefer having it with coffee at any time of the day. This is a very light, fluffy and cheesy bread usually made in small bite size rolls and also one of the easiest breads one can ever make. No rising and fermenting is required. It expands during the baking because of the elasticity of the starch from the cassava flour and cheese content in the dough. Pao de queijo taste the best when are just out of the oven freshly baked and crisp. They soften a bit after some time but still can be relished after warming them a bit.

Tapioca /Cassava starch ... 250 gms
Milk ............... 1 cup
Water ............. 1 cup
Oil ................. 1/4 cup
Egg................ 1
Parmesan cheese .. 50 gms (about 1 cup)
Salt ...........  to taste 


1. In a pan combine the milk, water and oil. Whisk it and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and add all the tapioca / cassava starch to it stirring briskly.

2. Remove it in a large bowl.

3. When it cools down a bit and you can handle it , add the egg, grated cheese and salt. Knead it well until everything is well mixed. The dough is usually a bit sticky.

4. Take a small portion of the dough, Roll it to make it smoother and place it on a greased baking tray. You can rub some oil on your palms to make it easier.  Repeat this until the dough is used up. Leave enough space in between as the breads expand on baking.

5. Bake them for about 30 minutes or until they are golden and crispy at - 180 C (350 F) temperature.

Please note that the baking time may vary according to the size and type of oven. So keep checking.
This quantity makes about 15 - 18  breads depending on the size you make.

Recipe Source - Tudo Gostoso

Thursday, October 1, 2015


Stuffed brinjals made with any kind of masala taste so delicious and are a perfect accompaniment with dal chawal. I try out with many variations and today's recipe is with South Indian podi (dal powder) that we serve with dosas/idlis. I had some home made curry leaf podi and since it was not very spicy I added chilli powder and few more masalas to it and used as a filling. Try to make this with small brinjals as they get cooked faster.

Brinjals .... 250 gms (small variety)
Curry leaf podi or any other podi ... 2 tbsp
Red chilli powder ............. 1 tsp (skip adding if the podi is spicy)
Turmeric powder ............ 1/4 tsp
Coriander powder ........ 1 tsp
Cumin powder ............ 1/2 tsp
Mango powder / amchoor ... 1 tsp
Dessicated coconut ........ 1 tbsp (optional)
Asafoetida ................ 1 pinch
Salt ............ to taste
Sugar .......... 1 tsp (optional)
Oil .............  3-4 tbsps
Curry leaves ... for garnishing.

See Home-made Podi recipes:
Curry leaves Podi - HERE
Gun Powder ........ HERE

1. Wash the small brinjals preferably with the stems intact. Make slits and leave them in salt water.
2. Remove from the water and pat them dry with a kitchen towel.
3. Mix all the stuffing ingredients adding salt carefully as the podi already has salt in it.
4. Stuff the brinjals with this mix.
5. Heat oil in a saucepan and place the stuffed brinjals.
6. Reduce the heat and allow to simmer.
7. Turn them carefully with a spatula to cook evenly on all the sides.
8. Sprinkle a little water if needed. Usually the small and thin variety of brinjals don't require any water.
Garnish with curry leaves.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015


Panch Phoran, meaning five spices is a spice mix mostly used in Bengali Cuisine. Usually we use the whole spices but if you like you may crush them lightly before using too. Generally the spices are mixed in equal proportion but I prefer to reduce the quantity of fenugreek seeds as they are bitter. You can mix the spices in large quantity and store them for later use to make it convenient.

 Panch Phoran Ingredients:

Mustard seeds ... 1/2 tsp
Fennel seeds .... 1/2 tsp
Fenugreek seeds .. 1/4 tsp
Nigella / onion seeds ....... 1/2 tsp
Cumin seeds ...... 1/2 tsp

This quantity is for single use.
You can mix more quantity and store for later use.