Monday, March 28, 2011

Bisi Bele Bhath

Bisi Bele Bath is a one-pot south Indian delicacy. It is nothing but rice and lentils together. To be brutally honest, it is not the most photogenic dish. It's the most delicious dish!

For me, the Bisi Bele Bath at the restaurant tastes better. There is nothing wrong with this recipe though. I might be biased about my cooking?

1. 1 mace
2. 4-6 cloves
3. 1 tbsp chana dal
4. 1 tbsp urad dal
5. 1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds
6. 3 tbsp poppy seeds
7. 1 inch cinamon
8. 10-12 dried red chili
9. 2 tsp coriander powder
10. 3 sprigs of curry leaves
11. 2 small tomatoes.
12. 2 large onions, chopped
13. oil
14. 3 tbsp ghee/clarified butter
15. 1/2 red green pepper, chopped
16. green beans, 1 cup, frozen
17. turmeric powder
18. toovar dal, 2 cups
19. 2 cups white rice, steamed
20. salt to taste
21. tamarind pulp
22. mustard seeds
23. peanuts (optional)
24. heeng
25. Jaggery, 1 tsp

1. Dry roast ingredients 1-8.
2. Grind the dry roasted ingredients with coriander powder. This will give you the spice mix. You can also add dried coconut, shredded.
3. Boil dal with turmeric powder and salt in a pressure cooker.
4. When the cooker opens, add tamarind pulp and jaggery. You can also add red chili powder depending on how hot you like it.
5. Heat oil in a wok and fry onions.
6. Add red bell pepper, tomatoes, and curry leaves to this. Cook till al dente.
7. Mix this and green beans to the dal and boil the dal.
8. To the dal, add 6 tsp of the spice mix and rice.
9. Heat ghee in a wok and add mustard seeds and let it crackle.
10. Add heeng to the ghee and then add peanuts and temper it in the dal

Serve hot with some salad.

This recipe was adapted from here.
Tried and Tested.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Home Made Bhel Puri

Bhel puri is Indian street food. It is a popular snack eaten tapas style. Bhelpuri is known as Jhal Muri in West Bengal. The doting of Bhelpuri comes from the combination of flavours and textures that it offers. The crunch of flour biscuits and the crispiness of Sev gives the dish presence to the palate while the softness of rice puffs and boiled potatoes counters the crunch in a positive way. The tamarind date condiment brings out a tangy-sweet taste whereas the addition of coriander condiment puts forth a savoury sensation. The balance of flavours makes this snack a family favourite.

Bhelpuri is rather easy to make,  given that you have some basic ingredients. Stock up on the store bought biscuits and rice puffs. Refrigerate or freeze up the condiments. When you have a surprise guest over or when you suddenly go ravenous, throw everything together and a snack will be ready in a jiffy.

The caveat to this dish is that, once made, it must be consumed fresh otherwise it will go soggy. The fun of this dish comes from it's freshness.

1. Khajur Imli ki chutney (Date Tamarind condiment), cooled.
2. Dhania ki chutney (Coriander condiment)
3. Golgappas or Papdi (Flour biscuits - can be found at Indian stores)
4. Murmura (Rice puffs)
5. Surati Sev (Flour snack - can also be found ready made in packets at Indian stores)
6. Red onion, chopped, 1 cup
7. Freshly chopped coriander leaves, 1/2 cup
8. Potato, boiled, peeled, cut in cubes, 1 cup
9. Black salt or kala namak
10. Lemon juice
11. Red chili, chopped (optional)

Throw everything together, mix well and serve fresh and consume right away.

This recipe is inspired from Tarla Dalal's. This is a bookmarked recipe.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Cold Coffee

What is better on a sunny day than a gulp of cold coffee? Refreshing, rich, and caffeine kick. Sound right to me!

Serves 4. No preparation required.

1. 3-4 scoops of vanilla ice cream
2. 2 cups milk
3. 3-4 tsp sugar or as per taste
4. 2 tsp coffee

1. Blend everything together and serve chilled.


Friday, March 25, 2011

Dahi Bhalla/Vada (Lentil dumpings in Flavoured Yogurt Sauce)

My post on Tamarind Chutney was a prelude to this recipe as well as one upcoming post.

Dahi Bhalla or Dahi Vada is a popular North Indian snack known as Chaat or street food. I learned how to make Dahi Vada by my mom. It was one of the first things I learned to cook. Today, I made this after some twenty years and it still turned out perfect! *Blushes*

1. 1 cup urad dal (while lentils)
2. Heeng
3. Salt
4. Thai chili, 1
5. Yogurt
6. Tamarind Chutney
7. Cumin powder (optional)
8. Sev (store bought, optional)
9. Chaat masala (optional)
10. Sugar

1. Soak the urad dal overnight.
2. Strain the water and grind the lentil in a food processor with thai chili, heeng, and salt. This will give you a batter.
3. Heat oil in a deep bottomed vessel. Drop portions of the batter the hot oil with a spoon.
4. Fry until the drops turn golden brown. This will give you lentil dumplings.
5. Transfer the fried lentil dumplings to a pot with salted water.
6. Sqeeze the water out of the dumplings and set aside.
7. Whisk yogurt and add sugar, red chili powder, and cumin powder to it.
9. Pour this yogurt over the dumplings.
10. Garnish topped with tamarind chutney, sev, chaat masala.
11. Refrigerate for a few hours.

Serve chilled.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Egg Curry

I had a dozen eggs left over from the cupcakes. This is what I did to it.

Healthy and easy to make, it hit the spot!

1. 8 hard boiled eggs, shell removed and cut in half.
2. 2 onions
3. 3 pods of garlic
4. 1 inch ginger
5. 1 thai chili
6. oil
7. 2 tsp coriander powder
8. tomato paste
9. salt to taste
10. tamarind pulp
11. turmeric powder, 1 tsp
12. red chili powder, 1 tsp
13. 1.5 tsp cumin powder
14. mustard seeds, 1 tsp
15. cumin seeds, 1 tsp
16. curry leaves, 3 sprigs (optional)

1. Blend the onion, thai chili, ginger, and garlic to form a smooth paste.
2. Heat oil in a wok.
3. Add mustard seeds and let it crackle.
4. Add cumin seeds and curry leaves.
5. When the cumin seeds sizzle, add onion-chili-garlic-ginger paste.
6. Fry till it changes colour.
7. Add turmeric, coriander powder, cumin powder and cook until it leaves the oil
8. Add tomato paste and fry for another few mins and mix well.
9. Add red chili powder
10. You can add tamarind pulp and some water at this point and boil it to increase the quantity of the gravy.
11. Add eggs and cover for 5 mins on medium to low flame.

Sunday ho ya Monday, roz khao Ande!! :)

Serve hot with rice or roti.
C for Curry.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


Basundi is a Gujarati milk based dessert. Basundi is easy to make, tastes great, and is rather healthy (minus the sugar). I was introduced to Basundi by my new cookbook and while researching Gujarati recipes online. The first time I made Basundi, was also the first time I tried this dessert. Then I was unfamiliar with Charoli nuts (seeds of Buchanania lanzan) as an ingredient to this recipe. But later on, at a relative's place, when I tried Basundi with these nuts, I realized how it took the deliciousness of this dessert to the next level. I was extremely happy with the results this time around.

1. Charoli seeds (can be found at Indian grocery stores)
2. Sugar
3. 1 L half and half milk
4. Saffron strands, 4-6
5. Almonds, soaked overnight
6. Cardamom powder (optional)

1. Boil the half and half milk.
2. Reduce the heat and simmer until it reduces to 1/4th quantity.
3. Add sugar to taste and saffron. Mix.
4. Let the milk cool then add charoli and almonds or any other nut of your choice.
5. Refrigerate for a few hours.

Serve chilled as a dessert or with lunch/dinner as a side.

Imli ki Chutney (Tamarind Dates Dip or Condiment)

Imli ki chutney is an interesting sweet-tangy sauce often used in Indian cuisine as a topping or garnish, key ingredient in various Indian snacks or street foods (chaat), and of course as a condiment or dip for samosas etc. This condiment may look gross to poeple who are unfamiliar with it but when you taste it, you will fall in love.

This was my first try and it turned out well. Thanks to Tarla Dalal.

1. 2 cups dates (khajur), pitted
2. Jaggery (Gur), 1 cup
3. Tamarind (imli), 1/2 cup
4. Salt, 1/4 tsp
5. Cumin seeds (optional)

1. Add all ingredients and water to a pot and simmer for 30 mins.
2. When cooled, liquify in a food processor.
3. Refrigerate and use.

This can be stored for a few weeks in the fridge.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Vegetable Biryani

Holi Hai!

How best to celebrate Holi but with colours? Given that I am a neat freak, my splash of colours went my plate rather than my clothes! After all, Vegetable Biryani is well worth it when it comes to cooking for festivals. This is an authentic veg biryani recipe and not the phoney pilaf versions sold at some fake Indian restaurants.

Don't be intimidated by the long list of ingredients. You will be well rewarded for your endevaour with the results. Thanks to my college chum Nidhi and blogger buddy Prathu for being my inspiration for this recipe.

1. Safrron, 4-5 strands
2. cloves, 8
3. cardamom, 8
4. black cardamom (badi elaichi) 2
5. bay leaf, 1
6. yogurt 2 cups, whisked.
7. Salt to taste
8. .5 tsp red chili powder
9. Ghee or clarified butter, 2 tsp
10. oil, 4-5 tsp
11. cinnamon or dalchini, 2 1-inces sticks
12. Veg biryani masala, appx 4-5 tsp
13. veg biryani paste, 4-5 tsp
14. onions, 2, sliced.
15. tomato, 1 chopped in bite size pieces.
16. red bell pepper or shimla mirch, 1, chopped
17. cauliflower, florets abt 15
18. green beans, 1 cup, chopped
19. peas, 1 cup
20, carrots, 1 cup.
21. cashewnuts, a handful
22. rice, 2.5 cups
23. garlic, 2 pods, minced
24. ginger, 2 inches long, minced
25. potatoes, 2, diced
26. fresh curry leaves, 3 twigs
27. whole peppercorns, 4

1. Wash rice and in a rice cooker, add rice, water, bay leaf, 1 inch cinnamon, peppercorns, 4 cloves, 4 green cardamom,2 black cardamom, salt, oil, saffron and let it cook.
2. When done, set it aside and let is cook.
3. In a big bowl, marinate potato, cauliflower in whisked yogurt.
4. In a big wok, heat ghee.
5. Add 4 cardamom, 4 cloves, 1inch cinnamon, cashewnuts,curry leaves, onion, garlic, ginger and fry until the onion turns golden brown.
6. Add the marinated vegetables in yogurt and then add veg biryani masala and paste.
7. cook until the potatoes turn golden brown and slightly coated with the spices.
8. Add red bell pepper, peas, carrots, green beans, some water and mix well.
9. Cook until all vegetables are al-dente and adjust seasoning as per taste. Add salt and mix.
10. In an oven safe dish, line it with aluminium foil.
11. Add a layer of rice then the cooked vegetables, alternate layers of rice and vegetables in this oven safe dish.
12. Cover with foil and put it in a pre-heated oven at 350 deg for 5 mins.
13. Mix well and cook for another 5 mins.

Serve warm

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Quinoa Pilaf

As I discovered Avacado and other fruits and vegetables after moving to North America, I discovered some new grains. One such grain was Quinoa. Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) is a high protein grain from South America. It comes in two forms: red and white. White Quinoa resembles sesame seeds. It tastes savory and slightly nutty when cooked right. It is hard for someone to not like quinoa as it can be tasteless if you cook it in water with a pod of garlic. Quinoa is very filling and nutritious and so it is guilt free indulgence.

This recipe is of Quinoa Pilaf.


1.1 cup Quinoa
2. 2 tbsp olive oil
3. 1 small onion, diced.
3. 2 pods of garlic, minced
4. 1 tsp turmeric powder
5. 2 tsp coriander powder
6. 1 tsp red chili powder
7. 1 cup frozen vegetables
8. 3 cups water
9. Salt to taste
10. Coriander leaves, chopped (optional)
11. 1 cup minced potatoes, (optional)

1. Wash Quinoa and set aside.
2. Heat a wok then add olive oil.
3. Add the garlic and onions and saute till translucent
4. Add frozen veg and potatoes and then cook.
5. Add quinoa, salt, coriander powder, red chili powder, salt, turmeric powder, and water.
6. Boil on high heat till the tail of the quinoa appears.
7. Lower the heat and simmer till the water disappears.

Serve warm garnished with freshly chopped coriander leaves.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Shahi Paneer

Paneer is Cottage cheese. Paneer can be cooked in many forms such as Spinach Paneer, Peas Paneer, and many more.

One variant, however, is considered of a totally elite class. Shahi Paneer  - the literal translation is Royal Cheese. And indeed is this dish Royal. Shahi Paneer is cheese in a thick and creamy tomato gravy. 
It's a typical North Indian and Mughalai decadent that is popular on menus at restaurants and as a special dish at the dinner table at house parties.

1. 1/2 kg paneer
2. Handful of cashewnuts
3.  3 tsp sugar
4. 1/2 medium onion
5. 70 ml tomato paste
6. 3-4 pods of garlic
7. 1 inch ginger
8. Salt to taste
9. 1 cup whip cream
10. 1 cup milk
11. 2 tsp coriander powder
12. 1/2 tsp red chili powder
13. 1 tsp turmeric powder
14. 1/2 tsp heeng
15. 1.5 tsp shahi paneer masala
16. Oil
17. 1 tsp garam masala
18. 1 small thai chili

1. Grind cashewnuts, onion, ginger, garlic, chili to form a paste.
2. Heat oil in a wok and then add this and cook until it changes color
3. Add the masala ingredients and tomato paste
4. Cook until this leaves the oil. Then add sugar and salt. Miz.
5. Add the paneer and cook for anther 5 mins.
6. Add milk and mix.

Garnish with kasuri methi and freshly chopped coriander leaves.


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Dhoodhi Muthiya (Bottle Gourd Steamed Pan Fried Dumplings)

As my reader you must be aware of my obsession with Gujju culture and cuisine. You can find one meal Gujju dishes such as Vagharela Bhaat, Dal Dhokli; snacks like Khaman Dhokla and Lentils like Gujarati Dahl on my blog. This post comes as an addition to the series of the Gujju cookery that I have been upto.

Since one of my readers requested me to post a snack recipe, I thought why not  post a Gujju snack from my very first (purchased) cook book? Muthiya is nothing but steamed dumplings made of vegetables and 3 different kinds of flour mixed with traditional Indian spices. Seasoned with sesame seeds and asafoetida, this dish pampers your palate and satiates your starvation. Muthiya was known to be a popular Gujarati tea time snack but today it has slowly and steadily transcended the borders of western India to make it a dish that everyone embraces. Weight watchers or flavour finders, all  enjoy this dish alike. Take my word for it :)

1. 2 cups shredded white bottle gourd/pumpkin (dhoodhi/lauki/gheeya), the water strained from the vegetable.
2. 1 cup shredded onion.
3. 2 tsp ginger-chili, shredded.
4. 1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
5. 1 tsp fennel seeds (Sauf)
6. 1 tsp turmeric powder
7. Salt to taste
8. 2 tsp sugar
9. 2 cups whole wheat
10. 1 cup besan (chickpea flour)
11. 3/4 cup suji (semolina)
12. .5 tsp baking soda
13. 1 tsp garam masala
14. 6-8 tsp oil.
15. Rai or mustard seeds, 1 tsp
16. Til or sesame seeds, 1 tsp
17. Chopped coriander leaves, 1 cup
18. 1 tsp heeng
19. 2 tsp lemon juice

1. Mix the pumpkin, onion, chickpea flour, semolina, wheat flour, 4 tsp of oil, cumin and fennel seeds, .5 tsp heeng, lemon juice, turmeric powder, salt, sugar, baking soda, garam masala and make a dough with the pumpkin water.
2. Oil your hands and make cylinderical threads of the dough and place on a steamer. Steam on medium heat for 30 mins or until a toothpick comes out clean.
3. Let it cool. Then chop into 1.5 or bite inch pieces. Set aside.
4. In a wok, heat 4-5 tsp oil and add mustard seeds and let it crackle.
5. Add sesame seeds and .5 tsp heeng.
6. Add the chopped bite size pieces of the dumpling and cook until they turn brown.
7 Garnish with freshly chopped coriander leaves.

Serve warm with chilled Dhania ki Chutney

Need more proof that I am no more a rookie in Gujju cooking? :-) You'll get it!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Chocolate Cupcakes

Both Mr. Husband and I are huge fans of Starbucks Chocolate Cupcakes. Paying a hefty price for them along with the calorie intake, however, often holds us back from devouring this heavenly treat.
I decided I would venture into baking cupcakes. For those of you who have been following me from the start must be aware that with trepidation, had I entered the world of baking. It was way back when that I had discovered that baking is not rocket science. But today I baked with greater confidence.
Although Mr. Husband had apprehensions over my baking skills, I managed to get him to come around. He pitched in with the beating and measurements and deserves the credit for the outcome as much as I do.  Delighted with the results, we'd recommend this recipe to any newbie baker. This recipe will drift you away to chocolate paradise.

  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons butter, softened or melted
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk
  • Store bought Frosting and Decoration sprinkles (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a muffin pan with paper or foil liners. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well with each addition, then stir in the vanilla. Add the flour mixture alternately with the milk; beat well. Fill the muffin cups 1/2 full.
  3. Bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. 
  4. Frost with chocolate favorite frosting when cool.
  5. Sprinkle decoration on top.
Crazy about cakes!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Khichdi (Rice and Lentil Stew)

Khichdi is sheer comfort food. Easy to digest and packed with  great nutritional value, this dish tastes scrumptious. Khichdi is a smooth mixture of rice and dal, tempered in a flavoured oil. Khichdi is packed with protien as the main ingredient of this dish is lentil. The goodness of turmeric, the crunchiness of mustard and cumin seeds, the hotness of red chili powder, and the kick from our very own heeng, make this dish a simple yet enjoyable delicacy all over India.

Serves 2. No preparation required.


1. 1 cup of moong dal
2. .5 cup rice.
3. 3-4 cups water
4. 2-3 dried red chili
5. .5 tsp heeng
6. Salt to taste
7. .5 tsp red chili powder.
8. 1 tsp turmeric powder
9. 1 tsp mustard seeds
10. 1 tsp cumin seeds
11. Oil or ghee

1. Wash moong dal and rice.
2. In a cooker, add water, rice, dal, salt, turmeric powder.
3. Allow 3 whistles to blow.
4. When the cooker opens, heat oil in a ladle.
5. Add red chili, mustard powder and heat till the seeds crackle.
6 Add cumin seeds and let it sizzle
7. Add heeng, red chili powder.
8. Add the tempering to the pressure cooker.

Serve warm with yogurt, fresh cut red onion, hot pickes, mashed potatoes (bharta), and papad.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Return of the Garnishing Event

After the huge success of the Garnishing event hosted by me in a few years ago, I have decided for it's comeback.

I have decided to make this a monthly event. The last date for submitting entries is the 20th of each month. You can send as many posts as you want to this event. However, a maximum of one post per blog per month shall be showcased in the Garnishing series. Archived posts are also allowed as long as it is linked back to this announcement.  
 This event is only open to bloggers.


  1. Send your best garnished dish. You must send unique posts to this event.
  2. The post should preferably be about the presentation or garnishing of an Indian dish but is not restricted to any cuisine.
  3. You must have a picture of the garnished dish on your post and it must be the picture of your recipe.
  4. Link back to this announcement with the logo above.
  5. Send me an email with your post at food[dot]fanatic[dot]recipes[at]gmail[dot]com. In the subject say Garnishing Event.
  6. Please include the following details:
    1. Your name
    2. Blog name
    3. Post URL
    4. What tips or tricks do you implement to garnish your dishes (some rules you follow, presentation advice, photography clues, etc)
    5. How you garnished it (carving steps, sprinkling ingredients etc)
I'll get the photograph from your post. Looking forward on hearing from all of you.

For extra entries, follow my blog publicly, in a reader, subscribe by email, like the site's facebook page and leave a comment for each entry right here in this post.

Dal Dhokli (Savoury Pita bread immersed in tempered lentil soup)

Dal Dhokli - the name was new to me but the delicacy itself was not. As a kid, my mom would occasionally cook a variant of this dish. Back in the day, we called it Dal Pitta (literal translation is Savory Pita bread immersed in a tempered lentil soup). This dish was never my favorite and so conveniently I made it a point not to learn the recipe. My mantra was that if I don't know how to cook it, I wont have to cook it :) But life often has interesting things in store for us...

As you know, I was married into a Gujju family. The other day we were invited for dinner at Mr. Husband's Gujju friends' place. To my surprise, they served Dal Dhokli for dinner. That is when I discovered that Dal Dhokli/Dal Pitta was an integral part of and typical Gujarati cuisine. Counting backwards, that day it had been some 20 years since I last had Dal Dhokli and to my surprise, I fell in love with it. A nutritious one meal dish, the dhokli's melted in the mouth while the warm lentil stew comforted and wrecked havoc in the taste department . How strange it is that the things you like as a kid are no longer on your most-coveted list as an adult and vice-versa! Such was my case.

Filling and delicious, I decided to give this dish a try. It has the goodness of a tasty protein-rich lentil broth along with the wholesomeness of flavored whole wheat pita bread.

Serves 2. No preparation required.

1. 1 bay leaf leaves
2. Mustard seeds
3. Green chili, finely sliced
4. Tomato chopped
5. Salt 2 tsp
6. Jaggery 4 tsp
7. Oil
8. Heeng, a pinch
9. Red chili powder
10. 1.5 teaspoon coriander powder
11. Fresh Coriander leaves, chopped
12. Toovar dahl, 1 cup
13. Turmeric powder
14. 3 cups whole wheat
15. 1 cup ajwain or carom seeds
16. 1 tbsp ghee or clarified butter
17. 1 inch cinamon stick
18. 1 tsp methi seeds or fenugreek seeds
19. 1/2 inch ginger, shredded
20. A handful of unsalted peanuts
21. A small ball of tamarind pulp, soaked in warm water

1. In a pressure cooker, add 1 cup toovar dahl, salt, turmeric powder, and 3 cups water. Allow 4 whistles to blow.
2. When the pressure cooker opens, let it cool. Then mash the dahl with an electric blender.
3. In a separate pan, heat ghee for the tempering.
4. When the oil is hot, add bay leaf, Cinnamon stick, mustard and fenugreek seeds and let it crackle.
5. Add a pinch of heeng and then add green chili and ginger. When the green chili fries, add coriander powder, red chili powder.
6. Add this, along with a peanuts, to the dal.
7. Boil the dahl.
8. Add gur  to the dahl. Mix then add tamarind pulp to the dahl.
9. Make a dough of 3 cups whole wheat with 2 tsps oil, salt, .5 tsp red chili powder, .5 tsp turmeric powder, 1 tsp carom seeds, .5 tsp coriander powder.
10. Make small balls of the dough. Then with a rolling pin, flatten the balls. With a pizza cutter, make slices of the flattened ball. Add to the dahl and let it boil.
11. Garnish with freshly chopped coriander leaves.

This recipe is based off Hetal's recipe and customized to my pantry and taste :) Thanks, Hetal!

Walking down the memory lane!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Hyderabadi Chicken Biryani

Biryani is my favourite dish. Whenever I go out, I try to order Biryani. I have always yearned to cook Biryani the right away. My several endeavours never met the mark I would have liked. I tried to coax my friend's mom who is from Pakistan to teach me how to cook Biryani but lost the battle :) I wondered what people did that made this dish taste so delicious!

Recently, I got back in touch with one of my college friends who married a sweet guy from Hyderabad. While chatting away with her and catching up, she mentioned she cooks Hyderabadi cuisine. I jumped at the opportunity and urged she give me the recipe for Hyderabadi Chicken Biryani. What could be better? She did!! Thanks, Nidhi. This dish took dinner by storm.  Mr. Husband said it tasted like the ones at the restaurant! This time I hit the right note!

I tweaked the recipe to my taste, convenience, and ready availability of ingredients. Maybe I can call it my recipe based on my friend's. :)

1. 1 pound chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
2. 3 pods of garlic, shredded
3. Ginger, a 2 inch piece, shredded
4. Cinnamon sticks 4
5. Cloves 4-6
6. 1 Bay leaf
7. 4-6 cardamom, whole
8. Salt to taste.
9. Oil
10. Yogurt, 2-3 tablespoons
11. Chicken malasa, 4-6 tsp
12. 1 tsp chili powder
13. Turmeric powder, 1 tsp
14. 1 tsp garam masala
15. 2 onions, thinly sliced.
16. 2 cup rice

1. Cut and wash chicken breast pieces
2. Put chicken in a bowl and add yogurt, turmeric powder, 2-3 tsp chicken masala, salt (I added 1 tbsp) and mix well.
3. Leave it to marinate.
4. Heat a wok and add oil, 2-4 cardamom, 2-4 cloves, 2 pieces of Cinnamon stick, then add onions, garlic, ginger, garam masala, 2-3 tsp chicken masala and fry till the onions turn golden brown.
5. Add the marinated chicken in this and a little bit of water.
6. Boil until the chicken is fully cooked. Stir occasionally.
7. In the meantime, wash rice and place it in a rice cooker. To the rice add water, oil, bay leaf, 2-4 cardamom, 2-4 cloves, 1 tsp salt, 1-2 cinnamon stick. Cook the rice until fully done.
8. Line an oven safe dish with aluminum foil. Add a layer of the cooked rice. Then top it with a layer of cooked chicken, then top it with a layer of rice and so on.
9. Cover the oven safe dish with aluminum foil
10. Cook in the oven at 350 deg c for 5 mins.
11. Mix the rice and then cook for 5 more mins in the oven at the same temp.

Serve warm with Raita and Salad

Friday, March 4, 2011

Pao Bhaji

Pao Bhaji is Indian street food. Pao Bhaji is a potato/tomato based curry that is often eaten as a snack in western India. Pao means bun and Bhaji means vegetables.

It's Mr. Husband's favorite. Pao bhaji is relatively easy to cook and tastes delectable!

You certainly won't regret this one :)

Let's get cooking...

1. 2-3 tablespoons of ghee
2. 4 potatoes boiled, peeled, mashed.
3. 1/2 small cauliflower boiled, mashed.
4. 1 cup green peas
5. 2 tablespoons tomato paste
6. 1/2 onion chopped
7. 1 thai chili, chopped (optional)
8. 4-5 tsp pao bhaji masala
9. Salt to taste
10. Carrots and green beans (optional), boiled and mashed

1. In a pressure cooker, add potatoes and cauliflower and allow it to boil. 5 whistles should do it. Mash the vegetables coarsely.
2. Heat ghee in a wok and when hot add chili and onion.
3. Saute until translucent.
4. Add tomato paste and mix well.
5. Add pao bhaji masala and cook on high heat until the paste leaves the ghee.
6. Turn the flame down to medium and add the mashed vegetables. Mix well and cook for another 5-10mins
7. Add Salt and peas.
8. Cook for another 5 mins and mix well.

Garnish with freshly chopped coriander leaves and serve warm with pita bread, roti/parantha, or bread/buns.

Potato Salad

Potato salad is a side dish, served cold, that is a winner at summer barbecue parties, potlucks, picnics, pool parties, or any party where the grub table is full of snacks or finger food. The good thing about Potato salad is that it's easy to prepare, takes minimal time and ingredients, is rather low cost, does not need warming before serving it, and sits well with most people - vegetarian or not.

Next time you're invited to a party, consider taking this for your hosts and then sit back and enjoy the praise :)

1. 4 Potatoes boiled, peeled, cut into cubes.
2. 5-7 heaping tablespoons Mayonnaise
3. 1 red onion, chopped
4. 1 tsp mustard sauce
5. 1/4 kg carrots, boiled, mashed.
6. Salt and pepper to taste

Throw everything together and mix well.
Refrigerate for a few hours before serving. Poato salad galore.

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