Saturday, December 28, 2019

BAINGAN KE LONJE


This is a traditional recipe from the state of Uttar Pradesh which is well known for it's rich and flavourful cuisine. Even the vegetarian dishes here are created using aromatic spices and ghee which make them taste Divine.
Baingan ki lonje is a spicy and flavourful side dish prepared with brinjals also known as egg plants. Brinjal halves are coated with a mixture made from fried onions and roasted spices and pan cooked on low flame in pure ghee. Trust me.. even a humble egg plant tasted like a non veg kebab. You have to make and taste them to believe what I say is true.

This dish is part of our monthly event that we have in our group on facebook _ Shhhhh Cooking Secretly ChallengeEach time we are paired with someone who chooses the two secret ingredients from the theme and we prepare any dish having those ingredients. 
This month I was paired with Narmadha from Nam's Corner. Do visit her space for some authentic South Indian delicacies.
I had given her Cinnamon and Cardamom and she made a delicious Bhojpuri Mutton Curry. 
She chose Fennel Seeds and Kasuri Methi for me and here I am with this delicious dish "Baingan ki Lonje"

Ingredients:
Brinjals / egg plants .... 5-6 (or as needed)
Onions ...................... 2 medium (about 1 cup finely chopped )
Ginger ........................ 1 tbsp (grated)
Ghee / clarified butter .. 4-5 tbsps
Cloves ..................... 4
Sugar ...................... 1/2 tsp (to caramelize the onions
Salt ..................... to taste
Amchoor / dry mango powder or lemon juice

Dry roast and grind the following:
Dry red chillies ..... 3-4
Black pepper corns .. 1/2 tsp
Cinnamon ............ 2-3 small pieces
Cloves ................ 3-4
Coriander seeds .... 1/2 tsp
Cumin seeds ......... 1/2 tsp
Fennel seeds ........ 1/2 tsp
Kasuri methi ....... 1 tsp

Method:
1. Cut the brinjals into halves keeping the stem intact. Try to keep a part of the stem in both the halves.
2. Give cuts on them and immerse in salt water for 1 hour.
3. Meanwhile dry roast and grind the spice powders mentioned in the second list.
4. Heat a little ghee in a pan and saute the onions until golden brown.
5. Add the ginger towards the end and let it cool.
6. Now grind the onions and the spice powders together adding salt to taste.
7.  Remove the brinjals from water and pat them dry with a napkin or kitchen tissues
8. Coat them with this spice mix pressing it well with the fingers.
9. Heat the remaining ghee in a flat bottomed pan.
10. Add the cloves and saute for few seconds.
11. Place the brinjals with the skin side down.
12. Reduce the flame and cover the pan. Cook on sim until done.
13. In between check them. If the brinjals are larger you may sprinkle a little water so that they get cooked.
14. Flip the side in the end and just let it cook for half a minute or so taking care the masala does not get burnt and turn black.
15. Finally sprinkle amchoor powder on them and garnish with coriander leaves.. If you prefer to use lemon juice instead of amchoor you can squeeze a little on top.
16. Serve with rotis or as an accompaniment with pulaos, dal chawal.

You can See the video of this recipe:



Wednesday, December 11, 2019

TOMATO TULIPS


This is a simple and easy carving. You can decorate your tables with this when you entertain your friends. 

Things Required :
Tomatoes -- 2 or as needed
Satay sticks 
Spring onions (for making stems)
Carving knives 

How to make:
1. Select long and evenly shaped tomatoes.
2. Using a carving knife cutout an oblong shaped pieces tapering in the edges on 4 sides of the tomato. (see the video for detailed procedure)
3. Next cut the top part joining the 4 slits to make petals.
4. Round off the tips of the petals.
5. Scoop out the seeds and pulp carefully.
6. Take a long green part of the spring onion.
7. Insert the satay stick into it.
8. Pierce it into the tomato to make a stem.
9. Tulip is ready. Now make as many as you require in the same way.
10. Decorate them in a vase along with some more greens of the spring onions.


Watch the video to see the procedure 





You can decorate your dinner / breakfast tray with a single tulip 



Saturday, November 30, 2019

TRIPURI CHICKEN SALAD / TOHAN MOSDENG / NORTH-EAST INDIAN RECIPES


Tohan Mosdeng is a tribal style chicken salad from Tripura. It is like onion kachumber with the addition of chicken and is very spicy. The charred green chillies give this salad the rustic smoky flavour. It can be had as a side dish with meals or even as a filling for the sandwiches, wraps or kathi rolls.

This recipe is part of the "Shhhhhh Cooking Secretly" challenge. We get 2 secret ingredients from our partner each month and we cook the dish of the chosen theme. My partner of the month is Renu Agarwal Dongre. She gave me "Onion" and "Green Chiliies" 

Renu Blogs at "Cook with Renu" . Do visit her space and check out her delicious recipes. The 2 secret ingredients that I gave her are "Red Chillies" and "Garlic". She made a spicy and delicious Tomato Chutney .. Check it out HERE

Ingredients:
Chicken ... 200 gms
Onion ....... 1 (sliced)
Green chillies ..5-6
Ginger ........... 1 " piece
Garlic .......... 3-4 cloves (crushed)
Coriander leaves .... 1 cup
Salt ..................... to taste
Oil .................... 2 tbsps (to fry the chicken)

Method:
1. Marinate the chicken fillet with salt and garlic.
2. Heat oil and pan fry the chicken until done. You can also grill it instead.
3. In a metal colander char the green chillies on the gas flame.
4. Crush them along with the ginger in a pestle and mortar.
5. Shred the chicken into thin strips.
6. Wash the coriander leaves and chop them.
7. Slice the onion.
8. Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl crushing them nicely with your hand. This brings out all the flavours.
9. Enjoy the chicken salad.

You can also see the detailed video of this recipe:





Sunday, November 10, 2019

JALAPENO POPPERS


Here is a delicious and cheesy party snack for you. I had these Jalapeno poppers in USA for the first time while visiting my children. I fell in love with these as they were to my liking... spicy !!!
Ever since I had been planning to make them. 

 Finally I got an opportunity when it was the turn to make a dish with alphabet "J" in our group --- A-Z Recipe Challenge. wherein we bloggers come together and choose  key ingredients alphabetically to make and post a dish every alternate month.


Ingredients:
Jalapeno chillies - 5-6 
Cheese ................ 1 cup (or as needed)
Bacon ................. few strips (optional)
Bread crumbs ...... as needed for coating
APF / maida ......... as needed for coating
Milk ................... 1 cup 
Garlic granules ... 1 tbsps (optional)
Salt ..................... to taste
Oil ..................... to fry 

Method:
1. Wash the Jalapeno chillies or peppers well. Make a slit and discard the seeds.
2. Put them in a pot and cook for just one boil adding salt.
3. Drain and set aside.
4. Grate the cheese and set aside.
5. Fry the bacon strips until brown and crispy. Cut them into tiny pieces. Mix them with the grated cheese.
6. Take the flour in a flat plate and mix little salt.
7. Put the bread crumbs in a flat plate and mix the garlic granules.
8. Wipe the blanched chillies and stuff them with cheese and bacon mixture.
9. Dip them in the milk and roll them in the flour until well coated. Repeat this step twice and refrigerate for 10 mins.
10. Now dip them in the milk again and roll them in the bread crumbs until well coated. Refrigerate for few minutes and repeat this step again until the chillies are well coated. 
11. Refrigerate them again for 10 more minutes. This makes the coating nice and firm.
12. Heat some oil in a frying pan and fry the Stuffed and coated Jalapeno peppers until crisp and golden brown.
13. Serve immediately.

See the Recipe Video of making the Jalapeno Poppers 



Notes:
Use any cheese of your choice. You may also use cream cheese if you like.
You can skip adding bacon and add chicken instead... or skip adding any of them if you are a vegetarian.
You can prepare and store the coated Jalapenos in the refrigerator a day ahead also if you are having a party.

Recipe adapted from - HERE





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Saturday, November 9, 2019

EMOJI COOKIES / KIDS PARTY SPECIAL


This is a very simple and easy to make cookie recipe, perfect for kids party. These are made by my grand daughter Maya.

Ingredients:
(All ingredients at room temperature)
All purpose flour - 3 cups
Sugar ................ 1 cup
Eggs ................. 2
Butter ............... 1 cup
Vanilla extract ... 1 tsp
Salt .................... 1/2 tsp
Baking powder ... 1/2 tsp
Baking soda ........ 1/4 tsp

Method:
 1. Mix the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder and butter until it starts to clump together.
 2. Add the eggs, sugar and vanilla extract.
 3. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 - 40 mins.
 4. Roll out and cut into desired shapes.
 5. Bake at 400 F for 6-8 mins.
 6. Remove and cool them on a rack.

Ingredients for frosting:
Icing sugar..... 1 and 1/2 cups
Melted butter ... 2 tbsps
Vanilla extract .... 1 tsp
Lemon juice ...... 1/2 tsp
Milk ................. 1 or 2 tbsps
Food colouring ... 2-3 drops


Method:
 1. Combine all the ingredients and beat until smooth.
 2. If frosting is thick add little more milk, if it is thin add icing sugar to adjust.
 3. Add the colour and mix well.
Spread it on the cookies evenly and decorate them in any way you like.

You can also watch the detailed Video of this recipe:


Wednesday, October 30, 2019

JEERE TAMATE MEI MEHA / SINDHI STYLE TINDE KI SABZI TAMATAR WALI / APPLE GOURD CURRY


This is a simple Sindhi style tinda curry made in tomato gravy with cumin seed tempering. It comes out so delicious even with minimum spices and no addition of ginger, garlic or onions. Select small and tender tindas as they have no seeds.

Ingredients:
Meha / tinda ............ 250 gms
Tomatoes ................ 3-4
Cumin seeds .......... 1/2 tsp
Salt ...................... to taste
Turmeric powder .. 1/4 tsp
Cumin powder ..... 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder ... 1 tsp
Red chili powder ... 1/4 tsp
Coriander leaves .... handful
Oil ................... 2-33 tbsps

Method:

Wash the meha well.









Peel them and make criss-cross slits half way through.










Heat oil in a pan and add the cumin seeds.







When they crackle add the tomatoes. Saute and simmer until they are soft and mushy.








Add the salt and turmeric powder.  Saute and simmer until they are soft and mushy.







Next add the chilli powder, cumin powder and coriander powder. Stir everything together.








Tip in the meha and saute for a minute.








Stir fry them until the oil is separated.










Add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer to cook.
After 10-12 minutes check it out and add more water if required.







Simmer until done. It takes about 30 - 40 minutes on low flame. Finally add the coriander leaves and serve.

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

MULTIGRAIN FLOUR AND QUINOA WAFFLES


Here is a recipe of healthy multigrain savoury waffles with quinoa. You can make them with a lot of variations by adding different things like veggies, boiled chicken, ham, sausages, or boiled macaroni  in the batter. Kids will love them.
Today I have added quinoa which is a super food. Multigrain flour is available in the stores these days. You can even mix various flours like whole wheat, soya, ragi, jowar, bajra, gram flour, semolina etc etc.. .. whatever is available in your kitchen in equal proportion.

Ingredients:
Multigrain flour - 1 cup
Boiled quinoa .... 1/2 cup
Yogurt .............. 2 tbsps (optional)
Onions ............ 2 tbsps (finely chopped)
Green chillies .. 1-2 (finely chopped)
Coriander leaves .. 2 tbsps (finely chopped)
Salt ................. to taste
Turmeric powder .. 2 pinches
Roasted and crushed cumin seeds .. 1/2 tsp
Oil ............. to brush on the waffle maker.

Method:

Soak 1/4 cup quinoa for 1 hour. Drain the water and boil it with half cup water adding little salt. It cooks perfectly and no need of draining the water as the nutrients will be lost. Let it cool.







Now mix together all the ingredients mentioned in the list.except oil and make a thick batter adding little water as needed.






Brush the waffle maker with oil on both sides.
Spoon the batter into it and spread it.








Close it and switch it on. It should be done in 4-5 minutes. (the light indicates when done)








Remove them.









 Serve hot with any sauce or chutney.










Note : This portion makes 2 big or 4 small waffles depending on the size of your waffle maker.


Thursday, September 26, 2019

UPMA WITH LEFT OVER DHOKLAS



We have all learnt from our elders not to waste any left-overs.  We should re-use them in some innovative way to create a new dish. I had about 7-8 pieces of rice and mix dal dhoklas left-over after a party. I crumbled them and made upma for breakfast. It turned out so good.


Ingredients:
Dhoklas .............. 7-8 pieces
Onion ................. 1 small (about 1/4 cup chopped)
Green chillies ... 1-2
Curry leaves ..... few
Coriander leaves .. handful
Mustard seeds .. 1/2 tsp
Cumin seeds ..... 1/2 tsp
Urad dal ........... 1/4 tsp
Asafoetida ....... 1 pinch
Salt ................ to taste
Oil ................. 2-3 tbsps

Method:

Take the left over pieces of dhoklas in a plate.









Crumble them.








Heat oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, urad dal and asafoetida.






When they crackle add the curry leaves and green chillies.







Next add the chopped onion and saute until translucent.







Now add the crumbled dhoklas and mix well.






Add salt to taste. Sprinkle little water and simmer for a minute or two.  Finally add the coriander leaves.





 Serve hot with any chutney of your choice.




Saturday, September 14, 2019

MAKHANA NAMKEEN / PUFFED FOXNUT MUNCHIES



Makhanas are puffed lotus seeds and have lot of health benefits.

1. The first and foremost advantage of consuming lotus seeds is that it acts as an anti-aging agent.
2. They are low in cholesterolfat and sodium. This makes them an ideal snack to satiate those in-between meal hunger pangs. 
3.  They are beneficial to those suffering from high blood pressureheart diseases and obesity due to their high magnesium and low sodium content.
(Information source - Google)



Makhanas can be included in many ways in our daily diet. You can make curries, desserts or a healthy snack for tea time. Toss them in a pan with some tempering and believe me you can't stop eating... they are so addictive. They make a great finger food for your parties as well.
Here is a simple recipe of savoury makhanas. 

Ingredients:
Makhanas ..... 1 pkt (or as needed)
Peanuts......... 1/2 cup
Cashew nuts .. 1/4 cup
Dry coconut slivers .. few
Turmeric powder ... 1/4 tsp
Red chilli powder .. 1/4 tsp
Roasted cumin powder .. 1/2 tsp
Asafoetida ............... 1 pinch
Curry leaves ........... 1 sprig
Salt ...................... to taste
Olive oil ................ 6 tbsps

Method:

Pour 3-4  tbsps oil in a pan and saute the makhanas 
Keep stirring on medium flame until they turn crispy. Check by breaking one piece.





Remove them in a bowl and set aside.








Heat the remaining oil in the same pan. Add the peanuts and fry them If using roasted peanuts skip this step. You can add them in the end.






Next add the cashew nuts and fry them a little.







Add the dried coconut slices and stir for few seconds.







Next add the asafoetida.






Now add the curry leaves.








Add the salt, mentioned spices and stir them.







Now tip in the roasted makhanas and stir well until the masalas are coated on them.






Allow them to cool before storing them in an air tight jar.









Check out the video recipe..





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