Monday, September 11, 2006

Beans Foogath

Foogath is a very popular dish in Mangalore. Foogath can be made of vegetables, meat, fish etc with slight variations in the preparations.

To make green beans foogath, you need :

400 gms green beans, french cut
1 onion, chopped
2 green chillies, chopped
2 tbsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
8 - 10 curry leaves
salt, to taste
1/2 cup freshly grated coconut
juice of 1 lemon
2 tbsps finely chopped corainder leaves

Heat oil in a kadhai/ wok & season it with mustard seeds. When they splutter, add curry leaves, chopped onions & green chillies. Stir on high flame for a minute. Do not brown the onion. Add the french cut green beans & salt. Stir well. Cook covered on low heat for 5 to 7 minutes till the beans are cooked, but are still a little crunchy. Do not overcook the beans as they tend to lose colour & texture. Remove from heat. Add the grated coconut & juice of a lemon. Mix well.

Garnish with finely chopped corainder leaves & serve hot with dal & rice.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Prawns & Peas Risotto

I have been so very busy recently, that I am unable to give enough time to my blog. I should come out of my busy schedule in a few weeks & continue with my regular posts.

I have had a lot of inquiries about this wonderful italian feast from all my blog visitors & I really apologise for the delay in posting the recipe. Risotto is a wonderful italian treat, I used to feast on this treat only in italian joints. But after watching a couple of episodes on Food Network, I decided to try it at home. I was so happy with the results & the process is not really difficult. All you need is a little patience.

1 cup arborio rice
12 - 15 cups of chicken stock/ broth
1/2 cup white wine
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 shallot, sliced
1 cup shrimps/ prawns
1/2 cup frozen green peas
handful of finely chopped parsley
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
handful of freshly grated parmesan cheese
2 tbsp olive oil

Pour the chicken stock/ broth in a saucepan & keep on medium-low flame.

Heat oil in a flat bottomed wide skillet over medium flame. Put in the minced garlic & saute for a few seconds till you get a nice aroma. Put in the sliced shallots & saute till it turns transparent. Add the arborio rice to the pan & saute for a few more mins. Pour in the white wine & saute well till the alcohol evaporates. Pour a ladleful of the chicken stock/ broth into the pan. Saute till the rice absorbs the liquid. Pour another ladleful of the stock/ broth into the pan & saute again till the rice absorbs the liquid. Continue this process till the rice is completely cook. It is not necessary that you use up the entire stock/ broth. Just keep pouring the liquid till the rice is almost done. Add the prawns & peas & continue the process till the rice is completely cooked. This should take approximately 20 mins. Season with some salt & pepper. Garnish with finely chopped parsley & freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Serve hot.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Goan Prawns Ambot Tik

'Ambot' means 'Sour' in konkani & 'Tik' means 'Pungent'. This is a traditional dish in both Goa & Mangalore. The preparation style is a little different though, but the majority of the ingredients remains the same. I got this recipe from one of my Goan friends.
The tamarind, peppercorns & red chillies add a distinct flavour to the dish. You can substitute prawns for any other fish of your choice. Mangaloreans & Goans prepare Ambot Tik of skate, shark or catfish as they absorb the hot & sour flavour of the gravy very well.

To make Ambot-Tik, you need :

1/2 kg prawns or any fish of your choice
1 onion, finely sliced
2 tbsp oil

Grind the below ingredients using very little water :

10 dried kashmiri red chillies ( they are less spicy & add more colour to the curry)
1/4 tsp cumin seeds
4 peppercorns
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
4 cloves garlic
1/2 inch ginger
marble sized ball tamarind

Apply salt to the prawns & keep aside.

Heat oil in a vessel. Fry onion till it is golden brown. Add the ground masala. Fry for sometime. Add a cup of water & allow to boil. Add the prawns. Cook till tender on low flame. Add salt & vinegar, only if necessary.

Goes well with steamed rice.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Promfret Fry

Ask about my favourite fish & I would call it Promfret & I like them fried crisp. I am not much crazy about them in gravies. Fried frish with dal & rice was often a great & comforting meal at our home. Occassionally, my mother would stuff promfrets with green masala or ground shrimps & then fry them.
Promfrets are not available everywhere in the US. You would only find them at local chinese markets. Last week, I was lucky to find a chinese market on my trip to Jersey. So not looking for a second chance, I just hopped into the market & bought 2 beautiful large sized promfrets. I just could'nt wait to get back home & fry it up.

So here it is, fried all crisp..

1 medium to large sized promfret, cleaned well by removing all the internal inedible stuff
3 - 4 tbsp rava (semolina)
2 - 3 tbsp oil, for frying
1 lemon, cut into wedges

For Marinate :

1 tsp tandoori masala powder
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp corainder powder
salt, to taste
3 cloves garlic, ground to a paste
1/2 inch ginger piece, ground to a paste
1 tbsp vinegar

Wash the promfret well. Make gashes on both sides of the promfret for the marinade to seep in.

In a small bowl, mix all the ingredients for the marinade. Apply marinade to the promfret, rubbing well into the gashes & inside the promfret. Set aside to marinate in the refrigerator for atleast an hour.

Heat a heavy bottomed pan on medium flame. Pour oil into the hot pan.

Coat the promfret with semolina (rava) & place it on the hot pan. Let it fry undisturbed on medium flame for 10 minutes. Flip & turn over the promfret on the other side. Let it fry for 10 minutes more.

Serve hot with lemon wedges.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Kesar Badam Nankathai

Baking has become one of my recent passion. I have always baked cakes. Now its time for cookies, since my toddler loves nibbling onto them. I recently tried Nupur's - Kesar Pista Nankathai. Since I did'nt have pistachios at home, I substituted it with almonds & they turned out awesome. I also skipped the addition of water as per the recipe.

Overall, the nankathai's were kind of melt-in-the-mouth & a good tea-time snack.

Thanks Nupur, for such a great recipe.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Mom's Traditional Meatloaf

Another top recipe in my mom's list is her meatloaf & if its meatloaf, this is the standard way she would make it & nothing on earth would ever make her change the recipe. My mother generally uses about 1/2 kg bacon mince & 1/2 kg beef mince for this recipe. Since bacon mince is not easily available in the US, I use the meatloaf mix that you get in the meat section of the grocery store. It has a combination of pork, beef & veal & the right amount of fat to deliver a perfect meatloaf. Secondly, she wraps the meatloaf in an aluminium foil & steams it in an idli steamer. So you really dont need an oven to make this meatloaf. This recipe is a must try.

1 pkg of meatloaf mix (approx. 1 lb package)
1 egg
1/2 - 1 tsp nutmeg powder (depending on the intensity of the flavour desired)
3/4th tsp pepper powder
1 big lemon, squeeze juice
2 - 3 slices of bread, crumbed
salt, to taste

Mix all ingredients together. Shape into a loaf & bake in a 350 deg F, pre-heated oven till done & the top of the meatloaf looks nice & brown (approx. 45 - 50 mins). Alternatively, you can even wrap the meatloaf in an aluminium foil & steam it in an idli steamer. Once done, set aside for 15 mins & then slice it.

This meatloaf can be served hot as well as cold.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Butter Cookies

I have always wanted to try my hand at baking cookies, but was scared at messing up. I guess, I was wrong. My first hand at trying these was successful. Moreover, my 1 yr old daughter kept munching them as if they were the best things in the world.

I got this recipe from another site & its the best. Click here for the recipe.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Prawns & Potatoes Bhaji

This is the most easiest version of a prawns dish. The taste is unbeatable & it goes well with chappatis.
A must try dish.

250 gms prawns, cleaned, shelled & deveined
250 gms potatoes, peeled & chopped into bite sized pieces
250 gms onions, thinly sliced
3 to 4 cloves garlic, crushed
red chilli powder, as per the pungency desired
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
salt, to taste
handful of finely chopped corainder leaves, for garnish
2 tbsps oil

Mix prawns, potatoes, onions, chilli powder, turmeric powder & salt in a bowl & set aside for 15 to 20 minutes.

Heat oil in a wok/ kadhai. Add the crushed garlic & saute till it turns light brown. Add the prawns & potatoes mixture. Mix well & let cook on slow flame till the potatoes are cooked. Saute occassionally. Once done, garnish with finely chopped corainder leaves & turn off the flame.

This goes great with chappatis.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Prawns Pattie

Cutlets & kababs are my favourites & they are always stocked up in my freezer. I carry this trend from my mom, who always had something for us to snack when we were hungry. My mother owns hundreds of recipes alone on cutlets & kababs. The below recipe is a combination of my mothers recipe & my own. These prawn cutlets are so delicious, that you will find yourself smacking on these, while you cook. Just ensure that you don't finish it off before your guests arrive.

1 lb medium sized shrimps, cleaned, shelled & deveined
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 jalapeno, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 medium potatoes, boiled & grated
handful corainder leaves, finely chopped
1 egg
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp vinegar
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
oil, for shallow frying

Divide the shrimps into 2 equal portions. Grind 1 portion of the shrimps to a fine paste. Remove into a bowl. Add the other portion of the shrimps to the ground shrimps. Add all the other ingredients except oil into the shrimps mixture. Mix well. Cover the bowl with a plastic wrap & refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Heat oil in a pan. Form round shaped cutlets out of the prawns mixture & fry the cutlets in hot oil till nicely browned.

Serve hot.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Whole Wheat Bread

Making bread is not as difficult as it sounds. Home made bread is so tasty & it just melts in the mouth. We have now stopped buying bread from the store as it lacks the taste & freshness of home made bread. Give it a try. It is as easy as cooking rice or making chappatis for your daily meal.

2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
7 gms packet of rapid rising yeast
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp melted butter
1/2 cup warm water

Stir in the yeast & sugar in the warm water & set aside for the yeast to rise. Meanwhile, sift the flour. Add salt & melted buter & mix well. Add the yeast mixture & knead to a soft dough. Add more warm water if required. Put the dough in a bowl & cover it with a plastic wrap & leave it in a warm dry place till it doubles in size. This should take about an hour or so.

Spray a loaf pan or a baking tray with an oil spray. Set aside. Pour a tsp of oil on the dough & knead well for a minute. Shape into a loaf or individual sized buns & place it in the greased baking tray. Cover with a warm damp cloth & leave it again in a warm dry place to rise until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 350 deg F. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until done. Brush the tops of the bread with some melted butter. Let cool & then cut into slices.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Prawns Masaledar

This is my husbands favourite dish. When I buy shrimps, I have to make a portion of the shrimps this way & we relish it with hot chappatis. This dish is nice & spicy. So if you cannot take the heat, just reduce the amount of chilli powder & green chillies.

1 kg medium sized prawns, cleaned, shelled & deveined
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp coarsely powdered black peppercorns
juice of 2 lemons
salt, to taste
2 tbsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp coarsley powdered corainder seeds
200 gms onions, chopped
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp garlic paste
200 gms tomatoes, chopped
6 green chillies, chopped
1 tsp cumin powder
handful of corainder leaves, chopped

Pat dry & marinate the prawns with chilli powder, turmeric powder, pepper powder, lemon juice & salt. Set aside for 15 to 20 minutes.

Heat oil in a wok. Add mustard seeds & the coarsley powdered corainder seeds. When they splutter, add onions & fry till they turn golden brown. Add the ginger-garlic paste & fry till light brown. Add tomatoes, green chillies & salt & keep stirring occassionally for 8 minutes or until the gravy becomes thick. Add prawns along with the marinade & simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occassionally. Sprinkle cumin powder over & cook for a minute. Garnish with finely chopped corainder leaves.

Serve warm with steamed rice or crisp rotis.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Pineapple Dessert Shells

This is a superfast way of preparing a yummy dessert. The dish is really versatile. You could use any other canned fruits or just mix up a few of your favourites.

You need :

dessert cake shells (usually available at all supermarkets in the US)
canned pineapple
whipped cream

Arrange the dessert shells on a serving plate. Spoon in the pineapple juice from the canned pineapple into each dessert shell. Spoon in some shredded canned pineapple on each dessert shell. Top with whipped cream & arrange some shredded pineapple on the whipped cream.

Refrigerate till it is ready to serve.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Beef Pita

This is one of our favourite dinners on a sunday evening. I make this often for a gathering of family & friends. You could also substitute beef with chicken.

1 lb beef, cut into thin long strips
1 big onion, cut into thick slices
2 flakes garlic, sliced
2 splashes of soya sauce
salt, to taste
pepper to taste
1 jalapeno, chopped
1 small capsicum, cut into strips
1 cup sliced mushrooms
2 tbsp olive oil
4 pita breads

Marinate the beef strips with soya sauce, some salt & pepper. Set aside for 30 mins.

Wrap pita breads in an aluminium foil & let it slowly heat up in a 250 deg F oven till nice & warm.

Heat oil in a wok. Cook the entire dish from step one till the end on high flame. Put in the garlic & jalapeno. Fry till garlic turns brown. Add the onion & saute till they turn transparent. Add the mushrooms. Saute for around 4 mins. Next add the capsicum. Saute again for sometime. Add the marinated beef strips. Mix well. Season with salt & pepper. Saute till the beef strips get completely cooked & all the pan sauces has completed dried up.

Spoon the beef mixture onto individual pita breads, roll & serve hot.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Simple Pulao

One amongst my favourites, that my mom used to make at home. A very versatile dish, you could use your own combination of ingredients; anything you have at hand works for this pulao.

Here's how I made this :

2 cups boiled basmati rice
2 tbsp olive oil
2 strips of bacon, chopped
1 cup chopped veggies (I used only peas & corn)
1 cup meat or shrimps (I used just chopped shrimps. You could use shredded chicken, beef, pork or a mix of all meats)
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 - 2 green chillies, finely chopped
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
chopped scallions

Heat olive oil in a deep wok/ kadhai. Add bacon & let it sizzle in the oil for a few seconds. Add garlic & green chillies. Fry till garlic turns light brown. Add the veggies & fry till they turn tender. Add shrimps/ meat. Add salt & pepper & fry for sometime. Lower the flame & add rice. Mix slowly. Spread chopped scallions on top of the pulao. Cover the kadhai/ wok with a tight fitting lid.

Heat a heavy bottomed flat pan. Simmer the flame to low & keep the kadhai or wok on the heavy pan. Keep it on dum for 30 minutes.

Serve hot.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Grilled Beef

A really simple & quick method of making grilled beef. The end result is indeed beautiful & tastes good.

4 - 5 long strips of beef
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice

Spread beef strips on a flat tray. Sprinkle salt & pepper on the beef. Set aside in the refrigerator for an hour. Drizzle olive oil & lemon juice over the strips. Mix well & refrigerate overnight.

Fix the strips on skewers in a zig-zag fashion. Place in a pre-heated oven for 30 - 40 minutes or till done. Baste with olive oil every 15 minutes.

Serve hot.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Prawns Pulao

This is a very simple & tasty recipe. My mom used to prepare this very often for my lunch box at work & she would prepare it in bulk as my colleagues would freak out on it.
Give it a try. I am sure you will like it.

You need :

20 medium to large sized prawns (if you have small sized prawns, just increase the quantity)
2 cups basmati rice
4 cups water
3 green cardamoms
3 cloves
1 inch stick cinnamon
2 medium sized onions, thinly sliced
2 medium sized tomatoes, finely chopped
2 - 3 tbsp cooking oil
salt, to taste
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp kashmiri chilli powder (if you are using any other chilli powder, add as per the pungency. This pulao will not taste good if you make it very spicy as you will lose the sweetness of the prawns.)

Heat oil in a kadhai/ wok. Put in the cardamoms, cinnamon & cloves. Fry for 10 seconds till you get a nice aroma. Add onions & fry till nicely browned. Add the prawns & stir fry till just pink on the outside. Add tomatoes, salt, turmeric powder, chilli powder. Stir fry till tomatoes turn soft & mushy. Add rice & water. Cover & let cook on medium-high flame till the water has almost been absorbed by the rice.

On the other hand just heat a tawa or a big flat pan on high flame. When the pan has become very hot, make the flame very low & keep the kadhai/ wok on that tawa/ pan. Lightly fluff the rice with a spatula from underneath the kadhai/ wok. Cover & keep it on dum till all the water has been absorbed by the pulao. Again fluff up the rice & serve hot.

Monday, February 27, 2006


Bamia is an arabic dish. This dish has very subtle & mild flavours, yet it is very delicious to eat with breads or naans or as a side dish with plain rice. My dad spent the major part of his life in Muscat & he loved arabic food. So my mother would cook up arabic dishes on his visit to India, just to impress him. One amongst them was Bamia, which became our favourite too.

You need :

1 kg boneless stewing lamb or beef
2 tbsps ghee/ butter/ oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1 cup peeled & chopped tomatoes
2 tbsps tomato paste
1/2 cup stock or water
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
1/2 tsp sugar
500 gms fresh okra, washed, drained well & towel dried
1 tbsp ghee/ oil

Trim the meat & cut into 3 cm cubes. Marinate for 15 minutes with some salt & pepper. Heat ghee/ butter/ oil in a pan & brown the meat well, adding a single layer of meat at a time. Remove from heat & transfer to a casserole. Lower the heat. In the same pan, add the onions & fry gently until transparent. Add the cumin powder, tomatoes, tomato paste & stock. Stir well to lift the browned sediments on the bottom of the pan. Pour over the meat in the casserole. Add salt, pepper & sugar. Mix well. Cover the casserole with an aluminium foil & bake in an 250 deg preheated oven for 1 & 1/2 hours.

Now the dish actually demands whole okras as the topping. But I find that a little spooky. I don't want any surprises in the okra. So I usually prefer to cut my vegetables before cooking them. I cut the okras into 1 inch chunks. Heat oil/ ghee in a pan. Add okra & fry over medium heat, tossing gently till 3/4th done. Arrange okras on top of the meat in the casserole. Cover & cook for further 40 minutes or until meat is tender & the okra has cooked well.


Thursday, January 26, 2006

Honey Grilled Chicken

I was really bored of trying out the usual way of grilling the chicken using chilli powders & all the other masalas & I was really dying to try out something new... Talking about this recipe, its really simple.... & the unusual blend of honey, green chillies & soya sauce make a very delicious dressing for the chicken.

So here goes the detailed recipe :-

500 gms boneless chicken, cut into bite sized pieces
lemon wedges, for garnish

For the marinade :

2 tbsp soya sauce
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp honey
2 tsps sesame oil (I did'nt have sesame oil, so settled down for olive oil)
2 green chillies, finely chopped
1 heaped tbsp finely chopped corainder leaves
salt, to taste

Combine all the ingredients for the marinade in a large bowl & mix well. Add the chicken pieces turning them to coat them well in the marinade. Cover the bowl & refrigerate for atleast 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 deg F. Place chicken pieces on an oven proof dish & grill uncovered for 15 - 20 mins on one side & another 15 - 20 mins on the other side. Once done, turn over the chicken pieces once or twice more & grill till they get browned all over. You could also barbecue these on live coals.

Serve hot with lemon wedges & any chutney of your choice.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Bread Nest

Eggs are my favourites & I love them in almost everything. So this morning thought of getting a bit creative with them. Children will love the look of this amazing breakfast & we adults too will love this special treat.

To make this special treat, you will need :-

4 slices of bread
4 eggs
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 tbsp chopped green garlic
pepper powder, to taste
salt, to taste
chopped parsley
little ghee or oil, for frying

Take a slice of bread & using a cookie-cutter or the mouth of a small katora or glass, cut rounds of the middle of the bread slice leaving atleast 1/2 inch space from all the corners. Follow this for all the slices. Keep the roundels aside & the bread slices with the holes aside.

Mix the onions & the green garlic & a tsp of chopped parsley together in a bowl & set aside.

Heat a pan. Put some ghee or oil & spread it around the pan. Keep the bread slice with the hole on the pan. Put the onion-green garlic & parsley mixture in the hole of the bread slice & just saute the mixture in that small space for 30 seconds. Break an egg carefully into the hole of the bread. Sprinkle salt, pepper powder & some chopped parsley on the egg. Cover pan & lower flame & let it cook till the yolk of the eggs turn pink. Repeat this process for all the slices.

Toast the bread roundels till lightly brown & serve it along with the bread nest.

Now here... you could get creative & use almost anything edible thing that comes to your mind. You could also try putting some grated cheese or tomatoes or even whip up the eggs with all the spices that you would use to make an omlette & pour the batter into the holes of the bread slice.

Enjoy !!!!!!!

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Eggs In Spicy Onion Sauce

Another success story with Maya Kaimal. I have just seemed to have fallen in love with her recipes. She brings beautiful dishes from the heart of Kerala & the kind of spice blend that she uses in her cooking makes the dish really unique in taste & look. I had already tried her Beef/ Lamb With Crushed Peppercorns & it was simply fabulous. Now, this one turned out to be a hero too. A must try I must say. You definitely don't want to miss out on the good stuff.

Below is the recipe, with a very minor modification made by me while cooking :

2 tbsp ground corainder seeds
1 tsp ground fennel seeds (saunf)
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper powder (if you don't have this, you could substitute with your regular chilli powder)
1/8 tsp pepper powder
1/8 tsp cinnamon powder
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/8 tsp cardamom powder
2 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
10 curry leaves
1 whole dried red chilli
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
salt, to taste
1 cup chopped tomatoes
1/4 cup coconut milk
8 extra large eggs, hard boiled & halved
chopped corainder leaves, for garnish

In a bowl, combine the corainder powder, fennel powder, cumin powder, turmeric powder, cayenne pepper powder, pepper powder, cinnamon powder, cloves powder & cardamom powder with 1/3 cup water & make a paste. Set aside.

Heat oil in a kadhai/ wok. Add mustard seeds. Once the seeds splutter, add the curry leaves & the whole dried red chilli. Saute for a minute. Add the thinly sliced onions & saute till they turn light brown. Add the spice paste & salt. Cook over moderate heat for 5 minutes, adding a few tbsps of water if the pan turns too dry. Add the tomatoes & saute till they turn soft & mushy. Add 3/4th cup of water & simmer over low heat, stirring occassionally until the sauce turns thick. Add the coconut milk & stir to mix well. Add the eggs. Spoon some sauce over the eggs. Cover & cook over low heat until the eggs are just heated through.

Garnish with some freshly chopped corainder leaves & serve hot with steamed rice.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Badrak Wala Chapli Kabab

Hmmmm... something worth trying & not much of a task. I got this recipe from Ismail Merchant's recipe collection & its awesome. A must try...... I must say...

Well... sorry about the poor presentation. As you know, when the aroma of such a wonderful dish takes on you, you really don't have the patience to control your tastebuds... These were just removed from the pan & gulped over in exactly 15 seconds.

Here's how you make it :

1 1/2 lbs lean ground beef
2 medium eggs
1/4 cup plain yoghurt
1 inch ginger, grated
1 green chilli, chopped fine
a few chopped corainder leaves (he never specified corainder leaves, but I love corainder in all my dishes)
salt, to taste
1 - 2 cloves garlic, chopped

Combine all ingredients thoroughly. Though he never specified, I kept the marinated mince in the lower compartment of the refrigerator for a couple of hours for the flavours of the spices to be absorbed by the meat. Moreover, refrigeration also makes it easy to handle the shaping of the kababs. Shape into kababs & keep flattening it till it turns out thinner, but easier to handle. As per Ismail Merchant, these kababs are broiled in a broiler. But, I pan fried some in very little oil. While the rest of them were grilled in an oven till browned all over. The kababs were unbeatable. I guess these might taste good even if you barbecue them on coal.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Methi Bhaji With Prawns & Potatoes

This is one amongst my favourite dishes. I learnt this from my mother. She makes this with the young fenugreek leaves grown on sand. But the young fenugreek leaves are not available here in the US, so I settle down with the mature ones. The prawns/ shrimps add more flavour to the dish. However, if you are a vegetarian, you could skip the prawns. It tastes good without it too. During summer, I grow my own methi bhaji & they are usually ready within a week. All you got to do is fill a plate made of plastic or mud (2 to 3 inches deep) with sand (sea-side sand). Soak fenugreek seeds overnight. Next morning, throw the water & spread the seeds on the sand. Cover the seeds with some more sand & water them daily. Within a week you will have young tender fenugreek leaves ready to cook. Just discard the roots & you could use the leaves & stem to cook. These are more tastier than the mature ones.

So heres how we make it :

1 bunch fenugreek leaves (methi bhaji)
1 big potato, peeled & chopped into small pieces
2 medium sized onions, thinly sliced
1 cup of prawns or shrimps (optional, incase you are a vegetarian)
2 green chillies, finely chopped
2 tomatoes, finely chopped
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
salt, to taste

If you are using the mature fenugreek bhaji, pick out the leaves, wash well in cool water (you may need 3 to 4 washes to completely remove the sand), then chop & set aside. Incase, you are using the tender young fenugreek bhaji, discard just the roots, wash it well with water to remove all traces of sand & chop them along with the stems. Set aside

Heat oil in a wok/ kadhai. Put in the chopped green chillies & fry them for a few seconds. Put in the sliced onions & saute till they turn transparent. Do not brown the onions, the bhaji won't taste good. Next add the turmeric powder & saute for a minute. Put in the fenugreek leaves, potatoes & tomatoes, salt & mix well. Cover the vessel & keep on low flame till the bhaji is cooked. Lastly, add in the prawns/ shrimps. Mix well. Cover & cook again till done. Serve hot with chapatis or steamed rice. I like this bhaji more with chapatis.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Dutch Baby

Hmmmmm... So I had a Dutch Baby for breakfast today. I had this recipe in my diary. Don't really remember the source of the recipe, but was tempted to try it out this morning. It was awesome. Infact, everybody liked it & my family asked me to make it again in the evening. It is usually made in a round pie-pan, but I settled for a square pan as I did'nt have a round one.

To make it, you'll need :

1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour or maida
1 tbsp butter
powdered sugar
freshly sqeezed lemon juice
melted butter

Preheat oven to 450 deg F for 15 mins.

In the mean time, blend milk & eggs in a blender for a minute. Put in the flour & blend again for a minute or 2. Put a tbsp of butter on a pie pan & keep it in the oven for 10 seconds. Remove & tilt the pan to spread the butter all over the base of the pan. Pour in the batter & bake for 10 - 15 minutes. It should puff up & collapse when it comes out of the oven.

Top with some melted butter, powdered sugar & a squeeze of a lemon. Enjoy !!!!

Friday, January 06, 2006

Batata Poha

When Meena from Hooked On Heat announced the From My Rasoi - Breakfast event, the first thing that came to my mind was Batata Poha that my mom used to make. She would make it so delicious that we would almost fight for the last bit of the poha in the vessel. On my mothers trip to the US, my husband learnt it from her & almost fell in love with it. Till date he is trying to master the art of making the Batata Poha, struggling to give it the same look and taste as how my mother made it.
So here comes From My Rasoi to yours for breakfast - Batata Poha :

2 cups poha (thick flattened rice)
1 big potato, boiled, peeled & mashed roughly
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
few curry leaves
1 green chilli, finely chopped
1 small to medium sized onion, chopped
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp salt or as per your taste
1 tbsp sugar
a lemon
1 heaped tbsp of grated coconut, for garnish
chopped corainder leaves, for garnish
1 tbsp oil

Take poha in a bowl & wash it well using your fingers. Drain & set aside. Do not soak the poha.

Heat oil in a vessel. Put in the mustard seeds & let it splutter. Next add the curry leaves & let it sizzle in the hot oil. Add the chopped green chillies & fry till it turns crisp. Next add the onions & fry till they turn just transparent. Do not brown it. Add turmeric powder & saute for a few seconds. Add the washed poha & mix well. Add salt, sugar & mix well. Add the roughly mashed potatoes & mix well. Pour over the lemon juice & mix well. Garnish with grated coconut & chopped corainder leaves. Cover the vessel. Set aside.

Now take a big pan & keep it on high flame. Once the pan heats up, turn flame to low & keep the vessel in which the poha is cooked on the hot pan & leave it aside for 10 minutes or so. This process is also called as Dum, which is generally done for biryanis. This will help the flavours of the spices to absorb into the poha.

Once done, serve hot.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Pepper Fried Chicken

Chicken time again!!!! That mighty bird litterally gets chopped all the time. I learnt this simple & delicious recipe from my mother. Its not much of a recipe tough. Very simple & easy to make. I cook it more often as an accompaniment with dal & rice.
I did'nt really have the time to make a good presentation of this dish, as I was so very hungry & had to just eat.

This is a must try. I am sure you are gonna like it & yes... cooking this is not a big task too..

I used :

2 chicken drumsticks, cleaned
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper powder
1/2 a small cube of chicken bouillon
salt, to taste
1 tsp olive oil (you could use any other cooking oil too)

In a bowl, mix together the turmeric powder, pepper powder, chicken bouillon & salt (be considerate with the salt, as the bouillon already adds some saltiness to the dish).

Make slits all over the chicken pieces using a knife. Apply the marinade mix all over the chicken pieces, rubbing well into the slits. Cover the bowl & set aside for 30 minutes.

In a frying pan, heat oil. Put the chicken pieces in the pan. Cover the pan & lower the flame. Let simmer for 10 minutes. Turn over the chicken pieces, cover & cook again till done. Now, remove the lid of the pan & let the chicken cook for sometime till it gets a little browned & the stock that gets collected around is absorbed.

If you are using more chicken pieces, you will need to fry these in batches.

Enjoy with steamed rice & dal.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Vegetable Sambhar

The recipe for sambhar varies from people to people. I make my sambhar as below. This is one of my husbands favourite. Sambhar is usually eaten with idlis or dosas etc. I love to eat my sambhar with just plain steamed rice accompanied with a fried chicken or cutlet. So here goes the recipe :

1/2 cup tur dal (yellow lentils)
1 cup vegetables, chopped (I used brinjals, drumsticks, tomatoes, green beans)
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1 heaped tbsp tamarind paste
1 1/2 heaped tsps sambhar powder
2 dried red chillies, torn into pieces
1 medium sized onion, chopped
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds (methi seeds)
salt, to taste
1/2 tsp cumin seeds (jeera seeds)
pinch of asafoetida (hing)
a sprig of curry leaves, torn into pieces
handful of chopped corainder leaves
2 green chillies, chopped
2 tbsps oil

Pressure cook dal with turmeric powder, salt & all the vegetables till done. Set aside.

Mix sambhar powder with the tamarind paste & set aside.

Heat oil in a vessel. Add mustard seeds & let splutter. Once done, add the cumin seeds & dried red chillies & fry till the chillies brown a little. Add onions, fenugreek seeds & asafoetida & fry till the onions turn soft & transparent. Add the cooked dal & let it give a mild boil. Add the sambhar-tamarind paste, curry leaves, half the corainder leaves & green chillies. Stir well to ensure that the paste has completely dissolved. Turn flame to low & let simmer for 5 minutes. Add the remaining corainder leaves, stir & let the sambhar heat through for another 2 to 3 minutes.

Serve hot.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Traditional Egg Curry

This is the traditional way my mom prepares the mangalorean egg curry at home. Very delicious & my favourite meal. No matter how much I try, the curry does not taste as perfect & as delicious as my mom's preparation. Well... sometimes cooking is more than just a recipe.

My mother usually grinds this masala on a stone grinder, making the paste really fine. Here in the US you dont get stone grinders... but the blender will do just the perfect job.

Here I am sharing the recipe of my favourite dish.

6 eggs, hard-boiled, peeled & halved
1 small to medium onion, thinly sliced
1 tomato, cut into wedges
2 potatoes, peeled, halved lengthwise & then quartered
1 raw egg, beaten
salt, to taste
3 tbsp oil

Grind to a fine paste:

4 tbsp grated coconut
6 - 7 dried kashmiri red chillies
1 tbsp corainder seeds
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1 medium onion
2 cloves garlic
1 heaped tsp tamarind paste

Grind the masala to a fine paste. Remove the paste & set aside.

In the same grinder, put 2 cups full of water & pulse the blender. Remove this masala water into a deep saucepan. Put in the tomato wedges & potatoes, along with some salt. Keep the vessel on medium flame & boil till the potatoes are cooked. Put in the beaten egg & stir till the eggs are scrambled & done. Set aside.

Heat oil in a kadhai. Add the sliced onions & fry till they turn golden brown. Add the masala paste & fry for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Becareful as the masala splatters, while cooking. Add the potato & tomato mixture & enough water to make a thick gravy. Add salt & let it come to a boil. Lower the flame & add in the boiled & halved eggs. Cook for 2 mins & remove from flame.

Serve hot with steamed rice as below.