Friday, January 20, 2012

Black chana Masala ( Black Chick peas gravy )

This is very frequently made dish in my house; reason being black chana is full of protein .. ohh who am I kidding? This is irresistible and spicy and I love it :-)

Here is what we need -

black chana
1/2 small size onion
1 tomato
2 tbs dry coconut powder
2 garlic pods
1 bay leave
2 cloves
1/2 sp butter chicken masala
1 tbs dry onion garlic powder
1/2 sp  garam masala powder
1 sp red chili powder
1 sp kashmiri red chili powder
salt per taste
3 tbs oil

Soak chana overnight in the water. Pressure cook it for 4-5 whistles as this should be bit soft and mushy.

Chop onion, tomato and garlic in big pieces.

In a pan take 2 tbs oil, once hot put bay leaf, cloves and garlic. After a few minutes add onion. After 5 minutes put tomatoes. Give it 5 minutes to lose water and blend in.

In another pan dry roast coconut powder to slight brown color. Add this to the gravy mix. Let the mixture cool down. Take the mixture in the blender and add all the dry spices except Kashmiri red chili powder and garam masala. grind it to a smooth paste. I prefer adding dry spices as it incorporates well.

In the same pan take remaining 1 tbs oil, once slightly hot add Kashmiri red chili powder; immediately pour the ground puree. On the medium heat let cook for 7 minutes. Add chana. Add garam masala powder. Give it a good mix. Add some water and cover it and let it simmer on Medium-low flame for 10 minutes. The layer of oil forms on the gravy.

Serve it hot with rice or roti .. Bon appetit!!

Tip : If you like to have raw onion along with your spicy gravies; cut the onion, put some lemon drops, salt and most flavorful chaat masala. It enhances the taste of your dish.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Vegetable Pulao

Veg Pulao - Basmati long grain rice, loaded with vegetables, easy to prepare and every rice lovers favorite !!

Here is what we need -

  • 1 cup long grain basmati rice
  • 1 small potato
  • 1/2 onion
  • handful of gree peas
  • 2 green chilies
  • 6-7 baby carrots
  • handful of cauliflower florets
  • 4-5 cashews and some resins
  • 2 tbs clarified butter or ghee
  • 1 sp cumin seeds
  • 1 garlic pod
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 pods of whole green cardamom
  • 3 cloves
  • 4 black peppercorns
  • 1 sp pulao or biryani masala
  • cilantro and lemon to garnish
You can add some paneer( I didnt have any but I love paneer in pualo) and some corns or beans if you like.


This is very simple but you have to follow the steps carefully.
First rinse the rice in cold water 3 times and soak it in cold water for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile dice potato, cut carrots lengthwise, slit green chilies, chop onion lengthwise, chop garlic very fine.
Heat ghee in heavy bottom pan. Add cumin seeds. Put dry whole spices ( green cardamom, bay leaves, cloves, peppercorns) and onions. Put garlic and rest of the veggies except green chilies and green peas.
Let it cook uncovered for 5 minutes( keep stirring) and covered for 10 minutes.
Right before adding rice put green chilies.
Drain all the water from soaked rice and save it to add later.
Add rice and stir it without adding water for 5-7 minutes. Add double the amount here 2 cups of water. I had 1 cup of remaining water from soaked rice and 1 cup fresh water.
Add salt, pulao masala, cashews and raisins and green peas.
Cover it and let it cook on medium heat for 7 minutes. Take out the lid and mix it gently.
Cover it for 5 minutes. Check if the rice is cooked. At this point sprinkle some cold water on top and cover it; switch off the stove in 2-3 minutes and keep it covered for another 10 minutes.
The rice turns out delicious. Garnish it with some lemon and chopped cilantro and serve it with Raita!


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Papadi for Chaat

Chaat is very famous street food in India. There are so many chaat varieties like Bhel, Pani-Puri, Dahi-puri, papadi chat, sev-batata-puri ohh .. this list is gonna be endless leaving us with the hankering to have everything at once. If you have this Papadi ready or made in advance you could satisfy those taste-buds literally any time :-) So today lets just make these papadis and store it in the airtight container so we can use it for papadi chaat later.

1 cup of all purpose flour will make 50-60 small size papadis.

In a mixing bowl take 1 cup all purpose flour. Add ajwain or carom seeds. Add 3 tbs of oil and some salt. Now by adding water little by little make a stiff dough.

Let the dough rest for 30 minutes.

Heat the oil for deep frying.

Divide the dough into 5-6 big equal size balls. Roll each ball into not so thin circle. Using a small lid cut circles in the big rolled circle. Fry 1st batch at one time. Make next batch and fry it.

Delicious and irresistible papadis are ready to use and while putting in the container you realize some of them are already gone :-) so before they all go we should make some chaat .. haappy cooking lovelies !!

Vegan Spiral pasta in white Ragu Sauce

There are innumerable ways pasta is made. I have tried a lot of variations myself but if you like white saucy pasta with lot of vegetables. This is so far the best.

Here is what we need -

  • spiral pasta
  • handful cherry tomatoes
  • 1 zucchini
  • 5-6 baby carrots
  • 1/2 small onion
  • 2-3 pods of garlic
  • oregano leaves (Store bought)
  • Italian Seasoning  (Store bought)
  • crushed red chili  (Store bought)
  • 1/2 cup Ragu's ( or your choice or Fresh home made) white sauce
  • salt per taste
  • 1 tbs Olive Oil

Let water come to rolling boiling. Add salt and some pasta. Let it cook uncovered for 15 minutes. Add spoonful of oil to water to avoid sticking.

In a pan. Add olive oil, Chopped garlic and oregano leaves, Italian seasoning and crushed red chilies. It will leave nice aroma. Add chopped onions.

Chop carrot and zucchini in big chunks. Microwave it with water for 5 minutes to cook. Drain the water and add it the pan to cook a little more.

Cook it covered for another 5 minutes. Add white sauce cook for another 5 minutes. Drain the pasta and add it to the sauce mix. Switch off the stove and keep it covered for a few minutes.

Garnish it with some Parmesan cheese... yumm!!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Bread Rolls

Bread is something that we have in stock any time of the season. You could just butter it and have it with tea or spread some bread spread on it and would make a good breakfast. or make a sandwich outta it or these gorgeous looking bread rolls.

Make a stuffing of your choice.

I used 2 boiled potatoes
handful of peas
1/4 chopped onion
2 garlics
2 green chilies
some frozen carrot, beans and corn mix
pinch of turmeric
1 sp pav bhaji masala
1/2 sp chaat masala

Mash the potatoes and stir fry onion, garlic and frozen mix, chilies on 1 tbs oil. Add this mixture into mashed potatoes. Add dry spices. Make very small round balls. It should make 15 balls.

I used white bread to make this. Slice the brown edges of the bread and sprinkle some water on the bread. Put 1 ball of stuffing and make a round ball using both of your palms. Make all the balls like this.

Heat oil for deep frying and fry the bread rolls.

Serve it with ketchup or chutney. This is so crispy .. perfect for the snowy snow :-)

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Chiwda - Tea Time snack

This is very famous snack in central part of India like Maharashtra, Gujarat.. The method of preparation could vary; this is my recipe. In my household this is made during Diwali time too :-0

I don't wait for Diwali to make this as we love this with tea!

It is very easy yet super delicious ..

Here is what we need 

  • 2 cups thin poha
  • handful of peanuts
  • handful of soft chana daal
  • 4-5 green chilies
  • 1/2 sp amchur or dry mango powder
  • 3 sp mustard seeds
  • 1 sp cumin seeds
  • 5-6 curry leaves
  • handful thinly sliced dry coconut ( I don't like this so I avoid)
  • 4 sp oil
  • 1 sp turmeric powder
  • 2 sp sugar
  • salt per taste

Microwave poha for 1 and half minute to make it crispy. Time will vary so try some and check if its good enuf for you. I like to hear the crunch of poha.

Chop green chilies in fine circles. chop curry leaves.

In a pan, heat oil, once hot add mustard seeds, as they splutter put cumin, green chilies, give it a good mix. Add curry leaves. Put peanuts and let them brown. Then add chana daal. Add turmeric powder. Add poha.

Mix it well. Switch off the stove. Add amchur powder, sugar and salt.

Keep it open in the pan till it cools down a bit. Dig in :-)


Maharashtrians need no introduction of this but for others it is a kind of paratha. You need a dry flour to make thalipith. This dry flour is called bhajani. This could be bought in any Indian store or could be made home. In India it is usually made home and given it to grind outside. The home blenders wont give the fine texture we need to make this.

While makin thalipith you can add onion, cabbage, carrot, beet root; anything that you want to add.

This time I made cabbge thalipith. Fine chop cabbage (approx 1 cup) Chop cilantro.

In a mixing bowl; put cabbge, cilantro, dry thalipith flour, pinch of turmeric, red chili powder and salt. make it a soft dough using water. this doesnt need any kneeding. It will take only a few minutes to form a dough.

Put some oil and let it rest for 10 minutes.

In a small non-stick pan, add 1 tbs oil, take a big ball of the dough (may be cricket size ball) and using your hand spread it on the pan to a flat round shape roti.(obviously thick roti)

Put the pan on the stove; cove it and let it cook from one side. Flip the sides till it turns golden brown.

The process of making/rolling thalipith could be done on a plastic sheet or aluminium foil.

Serve this hot with dollap of ghee or a bowl full of yogurt. This is my absolute favorite home recipe :-)