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Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Mong Khasar (Kashmiri Khichdi / Porridge)



          Kashmiri cuisine is known for its unique and aromatic recipes with a lot of stress given to spices like fennel seeds, saffron, whole garam masala and kashmiri red chilies. Yoghurt, ghee and mustard oil are also widely used. Many may be aware of a few Kashmiri recipes that are very popular, but this particular khichdi is not known to many. 

          I came across this recipe called "moga Khasar" in one of the cookery shows and so decided to give it a try. This is a vegetarian version which turned out simply yummy. Rice, red lentils and green gram with skin being the main ingredients. You can relish it with raita, pickles or any side dish. So please check for a step by step guide with photos to prepare it.













  • 1/2 cup rice
  • 1/4 cup red lentil (masoor dal)
  • 1/4 cup split green gram lentil with skin (chilkewali moong dal)
  • 2-3 tbsp. mustard oil
  • 1" cinnamon stick
  • 2-3 green cardamoms
  • 5-6 cloves
  • 1-2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1 tbsp. ginger-garlic paste
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder
  • 1 tsp. fennel powder
  • 1-2 green chilies
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. butter / ghee
  • 1/2 tsp. garam masala powder
  • 1 tsp. dry mint leaves, crushed
  • 1-2 tbsp. coriander leaves, chopped






          Soak the rice and lentils for an hour. Drain and keep aside. Heat oil in a pan / kadai. Temper with cumin seeds, bay leaves, cinnamon, cardamoms and cloves. Saute for a few seconds.

          Add the onions and fry till light brown. Now add the ginger-garlic paste, turmeric powder, red chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and fennel powder. 

          Mix everything well and saute for a minute. Add the soaked lentils, green chilies and salt. Give it a stir and continue to fry for 2 minutes.

          Add 4 cups water and bring it to a boil. Cover and simmer on a medium flame. Keep stirring from time to time and cook till soft and the water has almost evaporated.

         Add the butter / ghee, garam masala powder, mint powder and coriander leaves. Give it a stir and switch off the flame. Serve along with raita and any side dish for a simple and healthy meal.






                               Soak the rice and lentils for an hour. Drain and keep aside. 




                   Heat oil in a pan / kadai. Temper with cumin seeds, bay leaves, cinnamon, 
                   cardamoms and cloves. Saute for a few seconds.



                                Add the onions and fry till light brown. 




                   Now add the ginger-garlic paste, turmeric powder, red chili powder, coriander 
                   powder, cumin powder and fennel powder. Mix everything well and saute for 
                   a minute. 



                   Add the soaked lentils, green chilies and salt. Give it a stir and continue to
                   fry for 2 minutes.




                  Add 3-4 cups water and bring it to a boil. Cover and simmer on a medium 
                  flame. Keep stirring from time to time and cook till soft and the water has 
                  almost evaporated.



                  Add the butter / ghee, garam masala powder, mint powder and coriander 
                  leaves. Give it a stir and switch off the flame. 




                       Serve along with raita and any side dish for a simple and healthy meal.











Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Auria (Potato Curry - Dogri / Kashmiri Style)



          Dogri cuisine is still not come out in the open and is not made popular yet. But there are few really amazing dishes that one needs to try. Fortunately, I came across this very simple and an easy potato curry in one of the cookery shows and thought of giving it a try. 

          It is a very delectable dish where the potatoes are cooked in a yoghurt-mustard gravy. It has very few spices and is a no onion, garlic or ginger curry. You can have it with any type of rice like pulao, khichdi or Indian bread. So please follow a step by step method with photos to prepare it.








  • 3 medium size potatoes, boiled & cubed
  • 1 tsp. red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • salt to taste
  • 3 tbsp. mustard oil
  • 1 tsp. fennel seeds
  • 1 tbsp. mustard powder
  • 1 cup yoghurt
  • coriander leaves to garnish (opt)





          In a bowl, mix the yoghurt and the mustard powder. Keep aside for a few hours to ferment. (Traditionally it is fermented for 8-10 hours). Mix the potatoes with salt, turmeric powder and red chili powder.

          Heat oil in a pan and temper with the fennel seeds. Add the potatoes and fry till they are crisp and well browned.

          Take it off the fire and add the yoghurt. Give it a stir and bring it back to the fire. Cover and simmer on a medium flame for 2 minutes. 

          Switch off the flame and transfer to a serving dish. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve as a side dish with any form of rice or Indian bread.





                          Mix the potatoes with salt, turmeric powder and red chili powder.



                               Heat oil in a pan and temper with the fennel seeds. 




                               Add the potatoes and 





                                fry till they are crisp and well browned.



                   Take it off the fire & add the yoghurt. Give it a stir and bring it back to
                    the fire. 




                              Cover and simmer on a medium flame for 2 minutes. 



                     Garnish with coriander leaves and serve as a side dish with any form of rice
                     or Indian bread.











Friday, 16 June 2017

Upma Pesarattu Dosa (Semolina Porridge stuffed Whole Green Gram Lentil Crepes)




              This is a very popular Andhra breakfast. Nutritious and healthy, they are made of whole moong dal (green gram) and prepared just as dosa. It is stuffed with upma (semolina porridge) and is relished with coconut chutney and sambar. It can be had as a tea-time snack too. Upma and pesarattu are in fact two different breakfast recipes, which is combined together and served.

               In this recipe, I gave a slight twist by grinding the soaked moong dal along with some coriander stems and other ingredients for more intense flavour. Traditionally, whole cumin seeds are soaked along with the lentil, but instead, I added roasted cumin powder to it. They can also be packed for a lunch box meal and can be had for lunch / dinner too.







Upma......

  • 3/4 cup rava (semolina)
  • 1 tbsp. oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp. ginger, chopped
  • 2 green chilies, chopped
  • 1 tsp. mustard seeds
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1 tsp. split urad dal (black gram)
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tsp. lime juice
  • 1 tsp. ghee
  • coriander leaves to garnish





           Heat oil in a pan and temper with mustard seeds. After it stops spluttering, add the urad dal and saute till it changes colour.

          Then add the onion, ginger, green chilies and curry leaves. Saute till light brown. Add the rava and salt. Fry on low flame till it is lightly browned.

          Add 3 cups water and simmer on low flame till it turns thick. Add the lime juice and ghee. Mix well. Garnish with coriander leaves.




Pesarattu......
  • 1 cup whole moong dal (green gram lentil)
  • 1/4 cup rice
  • 1/2 tsp. methi (fenugreek seeds)
  • 1 tbsp. ginger, grated
  • 2 green chilies
  • 1/2 cup coriander stem, chopped (opt)
  • 1 tsp. roasted cumin powder
  • salt to taste
  • handful of coriander leaves, chopped
  • oil to shallow fry
  • coconut chutney & sambar to serve





          Soak the dal, methi seeds and the rice overnight. Next day grind along with the ginger, green chilies, coriander stems and 1/2 cup water.

          Let the batter be smooth of dropping consistency. Add more or less water as required. To the batter, add salt and cumin powder. (There is no need to ferment).

          Heat a tawa and smear it with some oil. Sprinkle some water and let it sizzle out. Then pour a ladle  of the prepared batter into a circular motion. 

          Drizzle a tsp. of oil over it and around the edges. Fry till brown specs appear on it. Flip it over and fry on the other side too. 

          Make similar pesarattu dosa in the same way. To serve, place a dosa on a platter and stuff it with some upma. Fold it and relish with coconut chutney and sambar. 




















Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Chicken Peas Curry



          This combination of Peas with Chicken into a curry form is simply yummy. I made use of dried white peas to make this delicious gravy. So please go ahead and give it a try. Very easy and an awesome preparation, it can be enjoyed with any form of rice or Indian bread, including dosa, appam, idiyappam, etc.










  • 400 gms. chicken curry cut
  • 1/2 cup dried white peas, soaked overnight
  • 3 tbsp. oil
  • 1-2 bay leaves
  • 1" cinnamon
  • 2 green cardamoms
  • 4 cloves
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1 tbsp. ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 tsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp. roasted coriander-cumin powder
  • 1 tsp. garam masala powder
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 tsp. ghee
  • 1 tsp. kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves), crushed
  • 1 tbsp. coriander leaves to garnish






          Pressure cook the soaked white peas in 1 1/2 cups water for 5 minutes on a low flame after the first whistle or till it is soft. Keep aside. 

          Make a paste of the ginger-garlic paste, tomato paste and all the dry spices with some water. Keep aside.

          Heat 1 tbsp. oil and saute the chicken till light brown. Drain and keep aside. Heat the remaining oil and temper with bay leaves, cinnamon, cardamoms, cloves and cumin seeds.

          Saute for a few seconds and then add the onion. Fry till it turns light brown. Add the spice paste and saute till the oil separates.

          Now add the tomatoes and fry till it is mashed. Add the fried chicken and 1 cup water or as needed. Cover and simmer till it is cooked and the chicken is tender.

          Add the boiled peas and simmer further for 2-3 minutes. Adjust water accordingly. When done, switch off the flame and add the ghee and kasuri methi. 

           Mix well and garnish with coriander leaves. Serve as a side dish with plain steamed rice, jeera rice, plain biryani, pulao, naan, kulcha, tandoori roti, paratha or just plain chapatti. It can also be relished with dosa, uttapam, appam or idiyappam.














Monday, 12 June 2017

Oal Paturi (Steamed Yam cooked in Banana Leaf - Bengali Style)



          This is one amazing dish that I came across in one of the TV cookery shows. Was quite impressed by its simplicity and it was absolutely true when I prepared it. It was awesome and delicious with just plain steamed rice. 

          In this recipe Elephant Yam (Suran) is mixed with mustard-coconut paste, onion, garlic, coriander leaves and other seasonings. It is then steam cooked in a banana leaf. So go ahead and give it a try by following a step by step method with photos to prepare it.






          Paturi is a traditional Bengali style of steam cooking in a banana leaf. Usually fish is prepared in this manner, but never knew that veggies too can be made in the same way. It turns out simply delicious. Besides rice, they can also be had with plain chapatti or parathas. You can also try with raw banana and arvi.





  • 500 gms. Elephant Yam (boiled & grated)
  • 2 tsp. mustard oil
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp. mustard seeds
  • 2 tbsp. fresh grated coconut
  • 2 green chilies
  • 1 tsp. lime juice
  • 3 tbsp. coriander leave
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • few whole fresh red chilies
  • banana leaf as required






          In a bowl, mix together all the above mentioned ingredients (except the last two). 

          Take few pieces of banana leaves and place them on the open flame for a few seconds to make them more pliable. 

          Place some of the yam mix in the centre of the leaf and place a chili on it. Gently fold the leaf securely to make a parcel. (You can also tie it up with a thread). 

          Make Similar parcels following the same method. Steam for 12-15 minutes. Set aside to cool. Open the banana leaf parcel and serve with steamed rice.





                               Grate the boiled Yam / Suran



                 In a bowl, mix together all the mentioned ingredients (except the last two). 



                   Place some of the yam mix in the centre of the leaf and place a chili on it. 



                  Gently fold the leaf to make a parcel. (You can also tie it up with a thread). 



                                Steam for 12-15 minutes. Set aside to cool. 



                               Open the banana leaf parcel and serve with steamed rice.

















Sunday, 11 June 2017

Nolen Gurer KoraPak Sandesh (Bengali Sweet)



          Sandesh is a very popular Bengali sweet that is made out of homemade chenna (cottage cheese). They are either baked, steamed or gently cooked in a non-stick pan till thick. It is then formed into desired shapes. 

          These days Sandesh can be found in various flavours. But this particular recipe is a traditional one where the chenna is combined with date palm jaggery to make this delicious and aromatic Sandesh. Moulds can be used for shaping it or made into round or oblong balls.






          Nolen Gur (Date Palm Jaggery) is not easily found everywhere. It is a seasonal delicacy, available only in Kolkata and in West Bengal in particular. We make it a point to procure it from any family friend / relative coming from Kolkata and treasure it to last for a long time. A number of sweets like - Sandesh, Rasgulla, Kheer, Ice Cream, misti doi, etc can be made from this jaggery. As a substitute you can try this recipe with any normal jaggery. So good luck!!!!






  • 1 litre milk
  • juice of a lime mixed with some water
  • 1/2 cup nolen gur (Date Palm Jaggery), grated
  • 1/4 tsp. cardamom powder
  • little ghee to grease the moulds









          Bring the milk to a boil. Add the lime water and keep stirring. The milk will start to curdle. Transfer onto a muslin cloth and place it on a colander so as to drain all the water. 

          After 1-2 hours collect the paneer and mix together with the jaggery till smooth. You can also blend in the mixie. Transfer to a non-stick pan and add the cardamom powder. 

         Keep stirring continuously on a low flame till it becomes thick and the colour changes to a little dark colour. Grease the moulds with some ghee.

          Take a small portion of the paneer-jaggery mix and place on a mould by gently pressing it. Slowly demould it and place them on a serving plate. 

         Make similar sandesh following the same method. Serve as and when required or as an after-meal dessert.





                               Sandesh Moulds...

















Saturday, 10 June 2017

Moutabel (Eggplant Dip - Middle Eastern Style)



          Moutabel also called Baba Ghanoush is a very popular smoky and a delicious Eggplant Dip in the Middle Eastern countries. Roasted eggplants are mixed together with tahina (sesame paste / powder), olive oil and few other seasonings to make this yummy dip. There are many versions to this particular recipe. So today I added some capsicum and tomatoes to add extra flavour to this dish. 

          It is traditionally served with Arabic Pita bread (khubz). But they also tastes great with crackers, veggie crudites, parathas, naan, roasted papads or as a sandwich spread. It is an excellent dip for appetizers / snacks as they are far healthier to any store bought sauces and ketchup. So do follow a step by step method with photos to prepare it.













  • 1 large eggplant, roasted
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. garlic, chopped
  • 1 capsicum, chopped finely
  • 1 tomato, chopped finely
  • salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp. sesame powder / paste
  • 1 tbsp. lime juice
  • 2 tbsp. chopped coriander / parsley leaves
  • 1-2 green chilies, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper powder
  • pinch of extra salt
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil + some extra for garnishing





          Discard the charred skin of the roasted eggplant and mash the pulp or chop them finely. Heat oil in a pan and saute the garlic till they change colour. 

          Add the chopped capsicum and fry for 2 minutes. Then add the tomatoes and a pinch of salt and further saute for a minute more. Switch off the flame and add the mashed eggplant pulp.

          Add rest of the ingredients and mix well. Transfer to a serving dish and drizzle some extra olive oil.

           Serve as an accompaniment with crackers, veggie crudites, our very own parathas, naan, roasted papads or as a spread on sandwiches. 









                 Discard the charred skin of the roasted eggplant & mash or chop the pulp 
                 finely.



                                Heat oil in a pan and saute the garlic till they change colour. 



                               Add the chopped capsicum and fry for 2 minutes.



                Then add the tomatoes and a pinch of salt and further saute for a minute more. 
                 Switch off the flame.




                Add the mashed eggplant pulp and rest of the ingredients and mix well. Transfer
                to a serving dish and drizzle some extra olive oil.





                  Serve as an accompaniment with crackers, veggie crudites, our very own 
                  parathas, naan, roasted papads or as a spread on sandwiches. 













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