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Eggplant (Brijal) and Fenugreek dry curry


Eggplants- Also known as Brinjal/Aubergine, comes with different colors and shapes like purple, green, white, long, round etc. Different varieties of eggplants differs slightly in the taste and the texture.

Eggplants, slightly bitter in taste, comes with lot of  health benefits. Eggplants are cooked in many different ways in different cuisines. Today, I am posting once such recipe which is very much Indian. I tasted this at one of my relatives place and could not stop myself from asking the recipe. So far, I have found this eggplant recipe to be the easiest and yummiest. While buying eggplants for this recipe make sure you choose the tender green eggplants. So here it goes…..

Ingredients:  (for 3-4 person)

1/2 kg green eggplants

2 cups chopped  fenugreek leaves

2 medium sized tomatoes (sliced)

1 tsp ginger paste

2-3 tsp fresh green chili paste (or according to the taste)

2-3 springs finely chopped cilantro

1 dried red chili

1 tsp mustard seeds

1 tsp cumin seeds

1/4 tsp asafoetida

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

2-3 tbsp oil (be a little generous after all you are cooking eggplants in India way! 😉 )

salt to taste

Method:

  • Wash the eggplants, cut them in half and slice them. Make sure you put these slices in water immediately.
  • Now heat the oil in a wok, and once the oil is hot add asafoetida followed by cumin seeds, mustard seeds,dried red chili and let them  play the music. You are right! Let them splutter. The dried red chili gives wonderful taste to few dishes.
  • Now add the ginger paste, green chili paste to the oil and let it fry till it leave a nice aroma. Add the turmeric at this point.
  • Throw in the fenugreek leaves and let the ladle dance in the wok for a while.
  • Now its eggplants time to go in. Make sure you add salt as soon as you add the eggplants. Mix it and wait for 30 seconds. Let the tomatoes and the chopped cilantro go in the wok. Mix it again.
  • Put a lid and let it cook till the eggplant is cooked. Mix it at regular interval.
  • Once the eggplants are done turnoff the heat and sprinkle the curry with chopped cilantro.
  • Serve hot!

Serving Tip: This dish goes very well with jowar bhakari.

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Green peas Kachori/ Matar Kachori


Green Peas— one of my all time favorite. I can eat them in any form raw, cooked, fried anything u can think of. So, today I am posting one more Indian snacks recipe which is made up with green peas. You can serve this green peas kachori as snacks or starter with mint/ tamarind chutney. Enjoy the recipe.

 

Ingredients: (Servings 4-5 people for snacks)

For stuffing:

2 cups – Shelled Green Peas (very coarsely grounded)

2-3 nos – Green chilies (finely chopped)

1.5 tsp – Fennel seeds (crushed)

1.5 tsp – Coriander seeds (crushed)

1/3 cup – Cilantro finely chopped

1/2 tsp – finely chopped ginger

1 tsp – Sugar (optional)

1/2 tsp – Mustard seeds

1/2 tsp – Cumin seeds

Pinch of asafoetida

salt to taste

2 tbsp – Oil

For Dough:

2 cups – All purpose flour

1 tsp – Carom seeds

2 tbsp – Hot oil

Salt to taste

Oil for frying

Method:

  • Mix Carom seeds, all purpose flour and salt. Add 2 tbsp of heated oil to and mix it.
  • Now kneed a stiff dough using cold water as needed.
  • Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a pan. Add asafoetida, mustard seeds and cumin seeds to it when the oil is hot enough. After they splutter add ginger and grounded fennel seeds and coriander seeds to it. Add green chilies to it and saute it.
  • Add green peas, salt and sugar to it and mix it properly. Add the chopped cilantro to this mixture mix and cook the mixture until its half cooked. Take off the heat and set it aside to cool down,
  • Make 20 equal size balls out of the dough. Roll the ball into a small size circle(poori). Place enough stuffing in the center  and close to form a pouch. Press slightly. Follow the same procedure for rest of the dough.
  • Heat enough oil in a kadhai(wok) and fry all the kachoris in medium hot oil till golden and crisp.
  • Serve these kachoris with your favorite chutney. I like them with sweet and sour tamarind chutney or mint chutney. How about you??

Minty Buttermilk Summer Cooler


I am back to India….. Direct transition from 7 Degree Celsius to 40 Degree Celsius :(… Its HOT. So, I thought to post a nice and healthy summer cooler. What else can be better than yogurt/buttermilk in summer??? Its a body coolant. At the same time it helps you in digestion. Buttermilk mixed with “Mint” will surprise your taste buds… Believe me that’s surprise and not a shock ;).. I will post the health benefits of Mint in one of my upcoming posts… Till then enjoy this Super-cool Minty Buttermilk Cooler… Don’t forget to let me know about the reactions of your taste-buds 😉

Ingredients:

2 glass – Buttermilk

2 tsp – Roasted Cumin Powder

10-12 nos – Fresh Mint leaves

2-3 Springs – Cilantro

1 nos – Green Chili (Optional)

3-4 nos – Ice cubes

Salt to Taste

Method:

  • Put everything (including ice cube) except buttermilk into a grinder and grind it to a fine paste.
  • Now mix this paste into the buttermilk and serve chill. 🙂

Spicy Veg Noodles with Roasted Bell pepper/Capsicum


Hey viewers! wondering where were I for so many days??? Well! we moved out of United States in August 2010. So was kinda busy initially and then little lazy later. Were enjoying all the food made by my mom. Yes! you guessed it right I was with my parents. Now you got it why was I so lazy 😉

Now, I am in Netherlands with my hubby  living on a college campus in dorms and the things I miss the most here is my kitchen 😦 . “college campus”, “dorms” kinda a puzzle rite. Well! my hubby is doing his MBA here. Anyways, coming back to the topic, I am gonna post a recipe for spicy noodles with roasted bell pepper today. This dish was invention out of need. Need to finish up the grocery before I go back to India in March and to finish up the bell peppers in the fridge so that they dont get wasted. I did not know the result of this need will be so delicious ;). The roasted bell pepper gives really nice aroma and taste to this preparation. So please try it and let me know how did you find this recipe.

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Ingredients: (for 2 )

200 gms – flat noodles

2 tbsp – sambal olek ( or as per taste depending on how much hot food can you take)

4-6 tbsp – of soy sauce(mine was mild)

2 tbsp – tomato ketchup

3 no. – dried  red chilies

1 tsp –  black pepper/according to the taste

2 no – medium size bell pepper/capsicum

9-10  no – french beans chopped

1 no – carrot sliced

1 no – onion sliced

3 tbsp – oil (preferably sesame)

2 cloves – garlic finely chopped

salt to taste

Method:

  • Boil the noodles according to the instructions on the packing and keep them aside. ( Make sure they are not completely cooked. they should be like 90% cooked)
  • Slice off the tops of  bell pepper/capsicum. Brush it with little oil and roast it till they are soft. I roasted them on gas top. You can use oven as well.
  • Now heat the oil in  a wok on maximum heat. Add the red chillies and chopped garlic when the oil is hot enough. Add the sliced vegetables and toss them for 2 minutes. Do not leave the veggies on their own as they may burn.
  • Add the Sambal olek, tomato ketchup, soy sauce, black pepper powder and mix them for another 15 sec.
  • Add the noodles and give  it a good toss. Adjust the salt. Saute for another minute.
  • Serve hot with the hot roasted bell pepper.

Red Pepper on FoodistaRed Pepper

Homemade/Desi Ghee or Indian Clarified Butter


Desi Ghee( Tup in Marathi) is always an essential part of Indian cooking. Most of the India food preparations are incomplete without a touch of ghee. Being a kid I have always loved eating  Tup-meeth-bhat(ghee-Rice and a pinch of salt)  before going to school in the morning. or a bowl of plain tuvar/arhar dal and ghee as soup. Rotis/Indian flat bread loves the touch of ghee or say most of the people love the touch of ghee to roti. Any sweet preparations like Sooji ka halwa/gajar halwa/ Gulab jamun again needs ghee. Give a ghee tadka/tempering to a curry or a dal and it will be amazing. I and my sister had a problem of  “Tonsillitis”. So even a bit of DALDA  consumption use to spoil atleast 4 nights sleeps of my mother and me :(. So my mother always ensured that we always have pure homemade ghee. Somehow I got so used to the taste that I do not like store bought ghee at all. I get some kind of weird smell and then I don’t feel like eating it at all.

Originally, ghee is made with storing cream over milk for a period of time and then making a butter out of it and then heat it to ghee. Long procedure!! phew!!!!!!! but worth!

While coming to USA my mom gave me a bottle of homemade ghee. But soon it was over. Now I had to follow the whole long process to get a ghee. And there came the entry of my friend Madhura who was in US and had already found the way to get homemade without that big hassle. She told me that we can make ghee from unsalted butter and believe me it tastes exactly like homemade ghee made from scratch. Wanna know how???? Follow the below process.

Ingredients:

1 lb Unsalted Butter

Method:

  • Take a heavy pan and put the slab of butter in it. Heat it on medium heat.
  • Butter will first melt into a while liquid. Heat it till it clears out and you get a golden yellow color as shown in the picture below.
  • Let it cool but do not let it solidify. Put a sieve over a cleaned glass bottle and sieve ghee through it and store it. It stays good for long time.

Note: You will see residues at the bottom of the pan. Add sugar to it and scrap it out. We used to call it as “Tupachi berry”. Tastes good. But only if you like. 🙂 Many people does not like it.

Oats-Almonds Egg-less Cookies


Oats Almonds Egg-less cookies one of the healthy baking experiments from my kitchen. You can find the original recipe here. I have made few variations to the original recipe. I did not have walnuts at home so I have replaced them with almonds. Also, instead of instant Oats I have used OLD fashioned Oats. One of my husband’s favorite cookies. Here goes my version of these cookies. Let me know how did you like them. 🙂

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Ingredients:

1/2 cup Old fashioned oats(you can use instant oats as well)

1/2 cup Whole wheat flour

1/2 Almonds

1/2 Cup raisins soaked in water

2 tbsp Vegetable Oil

2 tbsp Honey

2 tbsp Sugar

1 tsp Cinnamon  powder

1 tsp Vanilla extract

Pinch of salt

1/2 tsp Baking soda

Method:

  • Soak  the raisins and keep them aside.
  • Now take Almonds and Oats in a pan and roast them till you get nice aroma. Let it cool. Once cooled grind them to fine powder.
  • Add all the dry ingredients except sugar to it and mix it.
  • In a separate bowl, mix Vegetable oil,Honey,Vanilla extract, Sugar and blend it.
  • Fold in all the dry ingredients to this mixture along with the soaked raisins and make a dough. If you find it very dry to make a dough add very little water to it. Do not add much.
  • Make small balls out of this dough (8-10), flatten them into cookies and place it on a cookie tray. Keep sufficient distance between them.
  • Bake them in a preheated oven at 350 degree F in the center of the oven for 10-15 minutes till brown.
  • Cool and store in air tight container.

Cookies on FoodistaCookies

Veg Puff/Patties


Veg puffs/patties one of the most loved bakery food in India. Being a kid I have loved these veg puffs a lot. One of my friend Santosh, told me that he made those puffs in some food fest in Germany. Then my hunting started for pastry sheets. I grabbed a packet of pastry sheets from Indian store couple of weeks back. Time to bake them and eat with a hot cup of tea or coffee. 🙂

Ingredients:

Pastry Sheets

For stuffing:

3 medium size potatos

1 cup green peas

2 cloves garlic finely chopped

1 tbsp coriander finely chopped

1 tsp chat masala

1 tsp coriander powder

1 tsp cumin powder

1 tsp garam masala

oil for tempering

1/2 tsp mustard seeds

1/2 tsp cumin seeds

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

Red chili powder to taste

salt to taste

Method:

  • Take out the pastry sheet from the refrigerator and follow the instructions. (Mine has to defrost at room temperature before cutting into small pieces)
  • In the mean while, we will prepare the stuffing for veg puff. Heat oil in the pan. Once heated add cumin seeds and mustard seeds and let them splutter.
  • Now add turmeric, cumin powder,coriander powder followed by the green peas. Add chili powder, chat masala, garam masala.
  • Once peas are fried add mashed potatoes to the mixture. Mic them properly.
  • Add salt to it and mix it. Let it cook for 5 min. Add chopped coriander now mix it and cook it for 5 min. (stuffing should not be watery)
  • Keep it aside and let it cool.
  • Now cut the pastry sheet into desired size and shape. Put stuffing in the center and apply very little water to the edges and seal by pressing the edges now as shown below.
  • Place them on baking sheet. Keep enough distance between two patties. Once your make the patties put the tray into fridge for 10 min.
  • Pre heat the oven at 450 F.
  • Keep this tray into oven for 10 min.
  • Serve with ketchup or any sauce you like.

Note: You can make your own stuffing with vegetables you love.

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