Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Amsooli Dudhi (Bottle gourd with Amsool or Kokum)


Doodhi or bottle gourd is a very nutritious and healthy vegetable. We are trying to incorporate more of this vegetable in our diet every day. It aids in weight loss and helps with sleep problems and reduces inflammation. It has lots of essential vitamins and minerals. Ayurveda highly recommends eating doodhi or bottle gourd as a part of every day meal.

Since my little one gets bored with the same style of doodhi bhaji, I was trying something new and ended up adding the flavor of amsool or kokum and it turned out really yummy. change. Everyone polished off this 'chatpatit' bhaji with poli in no time :)

Sharing the recipe here:

Ingredients: Dudhi or Doodhi or Bottle gourd - 1 medium chopped into pieces, moong dal - 1/4th cup (soaked for at least an hour), green chillies - chopped, curry leaves - 6-7, Kokum or Amsool - 3-4 pieces, Oil - 5-6 tsp, cilantro - for garnish, freshly grated coconut - 3 tbsp, tempering: mustard seeds-  1 tsp, cumin seeds - 1 tsp, asofoetida - 1/2 tsp, Turmeric powder - 1 tsp, red chilly powder - 1 tsp (per taste), goda masala or garam masala - 1 tsp, kitchen king masala - 1 tsp, salt to taste, sugar 1-2 tsp 

Method: Wash and chop the bottle gourd into small pieces and add soaked moong dal at the bottom of the container and cook in microwave or pressure cooker or instapot till soft. I also do not remove the skin if the bottle gourd is really fresh. It adds nutritive value. Once cooked, take a pan, add oil and once hot, add the tempering ingredients along with chopped green chillies and curry leaves and kokum/amsool. Add the cooked doodhi or bottle gourd with dal to the pan. Stir for 2-3 minutes. Add the goda/garam masala and kitchen king masala. Stir everything and add the grated coconut and cilantro. Mix and serve with Roti or rice. Enjoy this simple, healthy and flavorful bhaji. I hope you enjoy it as much as my little one.

Till my next post, take care everyone!

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Rose Gulab jamun Rava Cake (Semolina cake with Rose and Gulab jamun flavor)


Hello friends, I am back with another successful kitchen experiment (yay). Rose Gulab Jamun Rava Cake or Semolina cake with Rose and Gulab jamun flavor!!! This cake is egg-less, flour-less and 100% vegetarian.We had a potluck where it was decided to get some cake for kids and other adults who do not usually go for Indian desserts. After browsing through many recipes of Gulab Jamun cake, I wanted to try something novel, so decided to add rose flavor along with Gulab jamun flavor and semolina instead of the traditional cake flour.

Friends, the aroma wafting through the whole house while baking the cake bought both my kids to the kitchen and they could not wait to try it. I can assure you that it is really easy peasy to make. If you are new to baking, this will be a good cake to try.

So here is the recipe. 

Ingredients: For cake: Very fine semolina (unroasted) - 2.5 cups , whole milk - 2.5 cups, yogurt whisked and at room temp - 3/4th cup, salt - 1/8th tsp, oil (unflavored)- 1/3rd cup, powdered sugar - 2.5 cups (Adjust per taste) plus some for cake decor, gulab jamun mix - 1.5 cup, rose essence - 3 tsp, cardamon powder - 3 tsp, baking powder - 1.5 tsp, baking soda - 3/4th tsp. For Syrup: 1/3 cup water, 1/3 cup sugar, cardamon powder - 1 tsp, rose essence - 1/2 tsp.

Method: For Cake: Heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Meanwhile, sieve the semolina along with gulab jamun mix and powdered sugar. Warm the milk and add room temp whisked yogurt to it and whisk together. Slowly add to the sieved semolina mix and stir. Check the consistency. If too thick, add more warm milk to thin it. Add the cardamom powder, rose essence, oil, baking powder and baking soda and mix. Pour it in a baking pan (I used a 9 x 16 inch rectangular tray to bake.) and put in 350 degree F oven to bake for 35-40 minutes. Take it out and check if done by inserting a knife into the cake. If it comes out clean, it is done. 
For Syrup: Take a pan and add sugar and water and boil for 8-10 minutes till the syrup turns into 1 string consistency. Add cardamom powder and rose essence and mix. Drizzle on top of the warm cake. Drizzle powdered sugar on top of the cake. Cut into pieces and enjoy!!! Needless to say that my whole family fell in love with this novel cake and I am sure yours' will too :)

Here is a picture of my cake right out of the oven and the other one is sliced and ready to eat:

Till my next post everyone, take care.

Notes: 
1. Check for sweetness when you mix the batter (adjust sugar per your taste). Remember that you are drizzling sugar syrup on the cake too.
2. You can grind and add almond or cashew powder and also some saffron to the cake. I forgot to add this time but would surely do it the next time.


Thursday, September 19, 2019

Shahi Cashew Spinach and Potato Pulao or Pilaf - simple and tasty


Hello everyone, today I am sharing a very simple but incredibly tasty recipe. Shahi Cashew Spinach and Potato Pulao or Pulav or Pilaf - call it whatever you like :) It is very easy to make and you can make it in Instapot or regular pan.

Ingredients: Rice - 3 cups, Spinach - 1 bunch (chopped), Potato - 1 large, Onion - 1 large, Ginger garlic and chilly paste - 1 tbsp, Whole Masala: (Bay leaf - 1 whole, Cinnamon - 1 stick, Cardamom - 2 small, Cloves - 2-3), Cumin seeds - 2 tsp, Turmeric powder - 1 tsp, Red chilli powder - 1 tsp, Pulao or biryani masala powder - 2-3 tsp, Garam masala - 1 tsp, Cashews - broken 10-12, Salt to taste, Oil -4-5 tsp, Yogurt - 1/2 cup whisked, Water - 5 cups.

Method: Chop  onion, potato and spinach. Heat a pan or put Instapot on saute mode. Add oil and whole masala and cumin seeds. Saute for 2 mins. Add chopped onion and saute till onion is soft. Add turmeric powder, red chilli powder and biryani/pulao masala. Saute for 3-5 mins. Add chopped potatoes. Saute for another 3-4 mins. Then add chopped spinach. Continue to saute till spinach is wilted. Then add rice and saute for 4-5 mins on medium flame. Finally add Cashews, garam masala, whisked yogurt, water and salt as per taste. 

  • If cooking in pan - cover and cook for 15-18 mins on medium low heat. 
  • If cooking in Instapot, cook on manual setting for 6-8 mins, natural release.
Enjoy with chips, boondi raita, pineapple raita,  or pickle and yogurt.

Till my next post, take care everyone.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Aloo Paratha (Spiced Potato filling stuffed flatbread)


Aloo paratha is a classic Punjabi dish that needs no introduction. It is an Indian flatbread with spiced potato stuffing inside it. It tastes heavenly. One bite and you will be hooked forever. Even though it is a traditional Punjabi dish, it is made in almost all regions in India. Who doesn't love potatoes, right??!! You can follow this recipe and try it out for yourself:

Ingredients: For the dough: 2 cups wheat flour, 1 tsp maida flour (to give elasticity to the dough), 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, 1/2 tsp red chilli powder. For Stuffing: Potatoes - 4-5 boiled and mashed, turmeric powder - 1 tsp, chilli powder - 1 tsp, coriander powder - 1 tsp, ginger garlic paste, green chillies and cilantro crushed - 2 tsp (optional), 1/2 tsp dried mango powder, salt to taste.

Method: Mix all the ingredients for the dough and set it aside for at least 2-3 hours. For the filling: Boil and mash 4-5 potatoes. Mix all the stuffing ingredients and make small balls and set aside. Take the dough and make small balls (slightly bigger than the stuffing balls) and set aside. Roll one dough ball to disc shape and fill in the stuffing ball. Seal the stuffing inside the dough dip it in loose wheat flour and roll the paratha. After that fry it on hot tava and add ghee or olive oil or butter as per your preference while roasting. Make sure to roast on medium flame so that the paratha does not burn.

Enjoy with raita, ketchup, pickle, chutney or any condiment of your choice. In this picture, I have served it with boondi raita and ginger-orange chutney.

Till my next post, take care everyone!!

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Gopalkala for Gokulashtami or Janmashtami Festival (flattened rice with yogurt and seasonings)


Hello Friends, Gokulashtami or Janmashtami is coming up and Gopalkala is a perfect dish to make that day. It is healthy and tasty. The yogurt makes it cooling along with cucumber. Kids love to eat this simple dish just like Lord Krishna.

So let me get to the recipe straight away.

Ingredients: Poha (Flattened rice) - 1 cup, Yogurt (Dahi)- 1 cup, 1 Cucumber- 1 chopped (peel and chop), Ginger - grated - 2 tsp, Grated coconut - 5-6 tsp, Green chillies - 5-6 chopped, Curry leaves - 5-6, Pomegranate seeds - for garnish (optional), Cilantro - chopped for garnish, Salt - per taste, Sugar - 1 tsp, Ghee - 2-3 tbsp, Cumin seeds - 1 tsp, asofoetida - 1/2 tsp

Method: Wash the Poha or flattened rice with water for about a minute or two. Keep aside and let it fluff and soften. Meanwhile prepare the yogurt. Whisk the yogurt in a bowl and add salt, sugar, and grated coconut. Add the poha to this mixture. Lightly mix everything in the bowl. Adjust the consistency of the poha. They should be able to soak up all the yogurt and not get too dry. Add a little milk if dry. After this, prepare the tempering to add to the Gopalkala. Heat ghee in a pan and add add cumin seeds, asofoetida, green chilies and  grated ginger pieces and turn off the heat. 

Add the seasoning to the Gopalkala and stir gently to mix everything. Garnish with Cilantro and Pomegranate seeds to make it colorful and add the extra element of taste. Enjoy and Happy Gokulashtami or Janmashtami to all.

Till my next post, take care everyone!!

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Narali Bhat (Sweet Coconut Rice) - a sweet delicacy for Narali Pournima (full moon) Festival


Hello friends, on the auspicious occasion of Narali Pournima and Rakhi, I am going to share a recipe for a traditional Maharashtrian dish called Narali Bhat also known as Sakhar bhat.

It is super simple and delicious. We always used to make it for Rakhi pournima or Rakshabandhan since my brother has a sweet tooth. So this narali bhat has lots of fond memories of childhood hidden in it.

So here goes the recipe:

Ingredients: Rice - 1 cup, Water - 2 cups, Grated coconut - 1 cup, Sugar - 1 cup (you can reduce sugar and add 3-4 tbsp jaggery too), salt - 1 pinch, ghee - 1/2 cup, cardamoms - 5-6, cloves - 5-6, Cashews halved- 10-12, Almonds - chopped - 8-10, few saffron strands - mix with warm milk.

 Procedure: Wash the rice and set it aside. Heat a pan (preferable flat), add ghee, when it melts, add cloves and cardamom, cashews and almonds. Saute till cashews are very light brown. Add the washed rice and saute it for 4-5 mins. Add a pinch of salt. Add water and cover and cook for 10-12 mins on medium low heat till rice is almost done. Add grated coconut, sugar/jaggery and saffron dissolved in warm milk to the rice. Take care not to break the rice. Cover and cook for 5-8 mins on low heat. Turn off the gas and let it sit for 10 mins. Remove everything in a pan and let it cool. Decorate with nuts and serve.

Happy Narali Pournima and Rakhi Pournima to all. Till my next post, take care everyone.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Garlic Mustard greens with Moong sprouts - insanely simple and healthy


Hello everyone!! Life is really busy as always but I am going to try and post something at least once in a while.

Today I want to share this insanely simple and healthy dish with you - my own creation - Garlic Mustard greens with Moong sprouts

Now-a-days everyone seems to be following some kind of diet and they want to eat smaller portions and healthier. Please keep in mind that even if you are dieting, it is essential that you eat food that is highly nutritional. If you compromise on nutrition, your body will be deficient of essential vitamins and minerals. Well, this recipe that I am sharing today is extremely minimalist on spices and high on nutritional value and taste.

Ingredients: Mustard greens - 1 bunch, Moong sprouts - 1 cup, Onion - 1 medium, Tomato - 1 small, Garlic - 10-12 pods chopped, Cumin seeds - 1 tsp, black pepper powder - 1/2 tsp, oil - 3 tsp, salt to taste.

Method: Wash mustard greens and chop them, cook sprouts with a little salt in a microwave for 8 mins, chop tomato and onion into small pieces. Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds chopped garlic and black pepper powder when hot. Saute for 1/2 minute and add onion. Cook till soft and then add the mustard greens. Cook for 3-5 minutes and then add cooked sprouts. Check for salt and add some if required (since we cooked the sprouts with some salt earlier). Cover and cook for 3 minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes in the end and turn off the flame. Let the tomatoes cook on steam for 1 minute.

Serve with rotis or as a side dish with rice. Can't get any simpler than this :)

Till next time, take care everyone!!

Friday, August 9, 2019

Jhalmuri - a chatpata snack from the streets of Bengal


Hello everyone, it is Friday today and I am looking forward to a great weekend catching up with friends and shopping. I was craving for something unique and chatpata so decided to try this jhatpat chatpata snack straight from the streets of Bengal. The famous Jhalmuri. Although it seems similar to Suki Bhel from Maharashtra, there are some unique ingredients that sets the tastes of the two items miles apart. 

So here is the recipe that is super simple and incredibly tasty:

Ingredients: 1&1/2 cups puffed murmura/puffed rice or bhel mix, 1/2 tsp grated ginger, 2-3 finely chopped green chillies, 1/4th cup aloo bhujia or farsan/sev, 1/4 tsp chaat masala, 1/4th tsp black salt, 1/4th tsp cumin powder, 1/8th tsp black pepper, 1/2 tsp red chilli powder, 1 small boiled potato, 1 chopped onion (small), 1 chopped tomato, 1 chopped cucumber, 4-5 tbsp chopped cilantro, 2 tbsp peanuts, 2-3 tsp - lemon juice, 4-5 tsp mustard oil (do not substitute).

Procedure: Take a large mixing bowl and add all the ingredients in it one by one. Mix everything gently by hand or you can use a spoon. After that, add the mustard oil and mix everything again.Enjoy this jhatpat chatpata Bengali snack "jhalmuri" with your afternoon tea or just anytime for snacks :)

Note: People use jhalmuri masala, which is typically a combo of coriander powder, amchur powder, red chilli powder, black salt, pepper and cumin powder. You can substitute with the ingredient shown above. It will taste just the same.

Till my next post, take care everyone.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Hirvi Mirchi Thecha or Kharda (Rustic Green chilly chutney)


Today I am sharing recipe for a traditional rustic Maharashtrian condiment Mirchi cha thecha also known as Mirchi cha Kharda in some parts of Maharashtra. It is typically consumed with Pithala (made with chickpea flour) and Bhakri (made out of Jowar or Bajri flour). It is extremely spicy, so use with caution. It is really simple to make. 

Ingredients: Green chillies (Hirvi Mirchi): 20-25, roasted peanuts (raw or roasted as per your preference) - 1/4th cup, Garlic: 8-10 pods, Cilantro: 4-5 tsp chopped, Oil to saute - 3 tsp, Cumin: 1 tsp, Lemon juice: 1/2 tsp, salt to taste. 

Method: Wash green chillies, wash and chop cilantro, peel garlic. Saute the green chillies, garlic and cilantro in oil till soft. Add peanuts and saute for 2 mins. Cool and grind the green chillies, peanuts, cilantro, garlic with cumin seeds, lemon juice with salt in a grinder to a coarse paste. Do not add water. Keep pulsing the mixer till you have achieve desired level of coarseness. Remove the coarse paste into a bowl. 

Note: I like to add tempering at the end for added flavor. Heat oil in a pan and heat 4-5 tsp oil, add 1/2 tsp mustard seeds. When they crackle, add 1/4th tsp asafoetida and add it to the ground thecha.

Enjoy the spicylicious mirchi cha thecha or kharda with Jowar or Bajri bhakri or even as a part of your everyday meal with roti and rice.

Till my next post, take care everyone.

PS: I am contributing this to #tasteofindianstates on Insta.
It is a cool initiative by 8 ladies of insta @kitchenmai @lakshmiscookbook @nandini_shivraj @dine_with_danika @sanoberbansal @happytummybyritumbhara @gastronomicbong and @mycurryvedaCook where you some favorite dish from any Indian state cuisine and Use #tasteofindianstates to contribute and don’t forget to mention all 8 ladies.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Flower Matar Rassa Bhaji (Cauliflower and Green Peas Gravy)


This is one of my favorite vegetables. It is a classic traditional Maharashtrian recipe and loved by most of the people I know. It is also served on festivals, special occasions and weddings. It is spicy and totally delicious. So here is how I make it:

Ingredients: Cauliflower - 1 large, Green peas - 1 cup, tomatoes - 1, mustard seeds - 1 tsp, asafoetida - a pinch, bay leaf - 1, chopped, green cardamom - 2, red chilly powder - 1 tsp, green chillies - 1 or 2 chopped, ginger garlic paste - 2 tsp, sugar - 2 tsp, Garam masala powder - 1 tsp, coriander powder - 1 tsp, turmeric powder - 1 tsp, oil - 2 tbsp, salt as per taste, chopped cilantro for garnish. For Masala: Oil - 2 tbsp, Onion - 1 large chopped, Ginger garlic paste - 2 tsp, Poppy seeds - 2 tsp, Dry coconut - 3/4th cup.

Method: For Masala: In a large pan, dry roast coconut and poppy seeds, then take 2 tbsp oil in same pan and fry onions till golden brown, add coconut and poppy seeds and ginger garlic paste and grind to fine paste and set aside. For Rassa: Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan and add mustard seeds, when they pop, add asafoetida, chopped green chillies, ginger garlic paste, bay leaf, green cardamoms, turmeric powder, coriander powder and ground masala. Saute everything till the oil separates. Add sugar and garam masala powder. Saute for 2-3 minutes. Add the cauliflower and green peas. (For special occasions shallow fry the cauliflower and peas in oil separately and add - gives special taste). Add tomatoes and saute everything. Add 1/2 - 3/4th cup water and cover and cook everything for 5-7 minutes. Take care not to cook cauliflower too much or it will get mushy. Garnish with cilantro and enjoy with hot roti or rice or even masale bhat.

Till my next post, take care everyone.