Wednesday, May 27, 2015


We can easily buy all these spice powders from the stores but nothing better than freshly ground home made masalas. They give extra flavour to the curries unlike the packed and preserved ones. Here is a spice mix for making Nalli Nihari Gosht / Murgh . You can even try out some veggies with it.. This quantity is sufficient for one kilo of meat to make a spicy curry. If you like it less spicy you can reduce the quantity as per your preference.

Dry red chillies .... 5-6
Cumin seeds ....... 1 tbsp
Coriander seeds ... 1 tbsp
Fennel seeds / saunf .. 1 tbsp
Cloves .......  8 - 10
Green Cardamoms ... 6
Black cardamoms ... 1-2
Black pepper corns .. 1 tbsp
Bay leaves ............. 2-3
Mace ..................... 1 piece
Cinnamon ........... 2 sticks of 1 inch 
Ginger powder ... 1 tbsp
Garlic powder or dried flakes .. 1 tbsp
Nutmeg powder .... 1/2 tsp
Roasted chana gram ... 2 tbsps

1. Lightly roast all the whole spices skipping the other ingredients.
2. Grind them to a fine powder.
3. Store in a sterilized dry jar until use.
You can make more quantity and store it for later use too.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


This is an American style sweet breakfast bread. Though it is a very simple one, there is something really nice about the combination of orange, cinnamon and apricot preserve. It was so soft and flavourful. We just couldn't stop with one slice and I am going to bake it again very soon. The recipe below makes two medium sized loaves. I halved the recipe and just made one. If you like it to be less sweeter you can reduce the quantity of sugar as per your preference

This bread is adapted from 500 Breads (Breakfast Breads, Pizza Crusts, Rolls, Scones, Bagels & more) by Carol Beckerman-
Carol Beckerman’s description of the bread “This is a pretty looking bread with a delicious swirl of cinnamon, brown sugar and apricot preserves when you slice it”,  and who says that breakfast breads must be eaten only for breakfast?

All purpose flour ... 3 and 1/2 cups + 1/4 cup for dusting.
Sugar .... 1 tsp
Warm water .. 2/3 cup
Active dry yeast .. 2 tsps
Eggs ......... 2
Sugar ...... 3 tbsps
Salt ........ 2 tsps
Orange ... 1 ( juice and finely grated zest )
Apricot preserve ...4-5 tbsps
Cinnamon ...... 1 tbsp
Brown sugar .... 1/2 cup
Oil ...... for greasing  ( I used clarified butter)


Take warm water and add 1 tsp of sugar. Sprinkle the yeast on top without stirring and leave it in a warm place for 8-10 mins or until it becomes frothy.

Extract juice of one orange and grate the zest.

In a large bowl mix the flour, salt and sugar. The recipe calls for 3 tbsps but you can reduce if you don't want it very sweet.
Make a well and add the eggs, liquid yeast and orange juice as required and knead into a firm dough.

Remove it on a floured  surface and knead it well for about 8 - 10 minutes until smooth and elastic.

This is very important step as the bread becomes nice and fluffy.

Place the dough in a greased bowl.

Cover it with a cling film or foil. Leave it in a warm place to rise until it becomes double.

 It takes about 2 hours. (in winters it takes longer)

Now remove the risen dough on a floured surface and knead it lightly.

 Divide it into two equal parts. Roll each part into a 6 by 13 inch rectangle.

Spread the apricot preserve and sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon.

Roll each rectangle like a swiss roll sealing the edges by pinching lightly.

 Grease two 8" by 4" loaf tins and sprinkle a little flout on the greased surface. Place the rolled bread in them.

Let them rise again until double for 30 -40 minutes.

Pre-heat the oven to 200 C (400 F) and bake the loaves for 30 - 35 minutes or until it is done. The time may vary a little according to the size and type of the oven.

Cool them on a wire rack or a wooden board  before slicing. I made a mistake by slicing them immediately as I couldn't wait to taste it and the filling oozed out.

(Reproduced with permission from 500 Breads by Carol Beckerman)
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 Linking to:
Our monthly baking group hosted by Aparna Balasubramanian
We Knead To Bake # 27 @ My Diverse Kitchen

Saturday, May 23, 2015


We usually eat radish only and the leaves are thrown away. Hence radish greens are not sold separately in the market.  During winter we find tender radishes with bunches of fresh leaves. The saag made with these leaves tastes awesome. Radish greens add nutrition to your diet and also are a rich source of calcium. Apart from  cooking you can also add a few leaves to your smoothies and salads. Wash the leaves thoroughly before using them.

Radish leaves ....5-6 cups
Spinach ............ 1 cup
Green chillies ..  1 or 2
Ginger .......... 1 tsp grated
Garlic .......... 1 tsp crushed
Onion ....... 1 small (1/4 cup sliced)
Turmeric powder .. 1/4 tsp
Coriander powder .. 1 tsp
Cumin powder ...... 1/2 tsp
Salt ........... to taste
Oil .... 2-3 tbsps

For Tadka / Tempering:
Garlic .... few cloves finely chopped
Kashmiri chilli powder ..... 2 - 3  pinches
Desi ghee / clarified butter - 1 tbsp


1. Wash the radish leaves and spinach thoroughly and chop them.

2. In a pan heat oil and add the sliced onion. Saute until translucent. Tip in the ginger garlic and green chillies.

3. Now add the mentioned spice powders and salt.

4. Add the greens into the pan, mix everything and cover with a lid.

5. The greens leave out water and there is no need to add any more. Just simmer to cook until the water dries up. It takes about 30 - 35 mins.

6. Let it cool. Lighly grind the saag with a hand grinder.

7. Now heat the ghee in a small pan and add the finely chopped garlic. When it becomes golden brown switch off the gas and add the Kashmiri chilli powder. Immediately pour this over the cooked saag and mix.

Linking to:

Hearth and Soul Blog Hop May last week @ Zesty South Indian Kitchen

Thursday, May 21, 2015


Dry and spicy stir fried boneless mutton recipe for all the meat lovers. You can serve it as a snack or a side dish with naans / rotis / phulkas. I am sure you will love this preparation. I have pressure cooked the mutton first and then sauteed with onion and spices as the meat here doesn't cook so easily. In India you get tender meat and you can make this directly on a slow fire sprinkling a little water in between the sauteeing. You may also use meat with bones if you like.

Boneless mutton ... 250 gms
Onion .................. 1 medium sized chopped finely.
Garlic ............. 1 tbsp crushed
Ginger ........... 1 inch piece grated.
Tomato puree ... 2 tbsps
Yogurt .............. 2 tbsps
Mint leaves ..... few 
Coriander leaves .. handful
Green chillies ... 1-2 slit or chopped finely.
Turmeric powder ... 1/4 tsp
Red chilli powder .. 1/4 tsp (add more if you like it spicy)
Cumin powder ..... 1/4 tsp
Coriander powder . 1/2 tsp
Garam masala powder .. 1/2 tsp
Salt .............. to taste
Oil or  Desi ghee .. 2-3 tbsps or as needed
* Whole spices like cinnamon stick, bay leaves and cardamoms ... add in the pressure cooker while boiling the meat.

1. In a pressure cooker take 2-3 cups water and tip in  the whole spices*. Add the cleaned meat pieces, a little salt and turmeric. Boil the meat until 3/4 ths done. Remove the pieces and store the stock for future use. You can even freeze it after cooling. 
2. In a pan or a wok add oil or desi ghee and fry the onion until light pink. 
3 .Add the slit green chillies, ginger and garlic. saute for half a minute.
4. Put the mutton pieces and one fry again for a minute. Add the tomato puree and slit green chillies. 
5. One by one add all the spices except garam masala which we shall add towards the end.
6. You may sprinkle a little water while sauteeing if the meat is not cooked.
7. Whisk the yogurt and add it to the meat stirring immediately to blend into the masalas.
8. Tear the mint leaves with fingers and add it.  Simmer it until done.
9. Garnish with coriander leaves. 

Friday, May 15, 2015


Making crab curry was on my list since a long time. At last I got some crabs though they were not really big, still the curry turned out awesome. I made it in the Goan style and served with plain rice. This gravy can go with dosas and appams too. Cleaning the crabs is little tricky. If you get them cleaned and ready from the market it is fine .. or else you can watch this video of Vahrevah Chef how to clean them. I just followed his instructions as this was my first attempt too.

 How to clean the crabs -

Crabs ..... 4-5
Onion ... 1 large (1 cup sliced) + 1/4 cup finely chopped
Tomato .. 1
Ginger .. 1 inch piece
Garlic ... 5-6 cloves
Dry red chillies .. 2-3
Fennel seeds .. 1 tsp
Cumin seeds .. 1/2 tsp
Cloves ........ 3-4
Cardamoms .. 4-5
Cinnamon .. small piece
Grated coconut .. 1/2 cup
Turmeric powder ..
Red chilli powder .. 1/2 tsp (or more if you like )
Coriander powder .. 1 tsp
Garam masala powder .. 1/2 tsp
Salt .... to taste
Curry leaves .. 1 sprig
Coriander leaves .. handful
Oil .... 4-5 tbsps or as needed
Lemon juice ... 2 tbsps
Thick coconut milk ... 2-3 tbsps

1. Clean the crabs and cut them into pieces.
2. Marinate them with salt, little turmeric powder and lemon juice.
3.In a pan heat 1 tbsp oil and add the fennel seeds, cumin seeds, red chillies, cardamom, cloves and cinnamon.
4. When they leave out an aroma tip in the onion and saute it adding the ginger garlic after a little while.
5. Now add the grated onion and stir fry for a minute.
6. Grind it adding water to a thick paste.
7. Now heat oil in a pan and add the finely chopped onions. Saute.
8. Add the tomato cubes and the spice powders except garam masala .
9. Tip in the marinated crab pieces and stir fry until they change the colour for about 2 minutes.
10. Now add the ground masala paste, curry leaves and salt.  Stir fry for a few minutes.
11. Add one and half to two cups of water and simmer to cook for about 15 minutes.
12. Finally stir in the coconut milk and garnish with coriander leaves.