Posts Tagged ‘Indian’

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Chicken, in any form and style, is one of my favorite food. Chettinad is a region in Tamil Nadu state in India and famous for its spicy and flavorful cuisine. I would love to visit this place to try other dishes of this cuisine. I have tried this recipe many times mainly with Chicken but also with Mushrooms and it has always turned out good with its bursting and tickling taste. I have never tried this dish at a restaurant but researched online before making it. Also, I don’t get good variety of food in Indian restaurant in our town. As always, the inspiration behind this recipe is the great chef Sanjeev Kapoor. Traditionally, the Chettinad cuisine offers spicy food with lot of red chillies and spices. The most important thing about this dish is the freshly grounded masala made of roasted spices and fresh coconut. For a vegetarian version, you can try this with Mushroom as they are as meaty and similar in texture as Chicken. Of course, my preference is Chicken over the Mushroom. Don’t let the long list of ingredient scare you as the end result will be very delicious. Enjoy this dish with ghee (clarified butter) rice or roti (whole wheat flat bread).

Ingredients :-

Chicken 1 pound (approx 500gm)
 Oil 2 tablespoon
Poppy seeds, soaked 2 teaspoon
Ginger, chopped 1 inch
Garlic, chopped 1 tablespoon
Cashew nuts, soaked 8-10
Onions, finely chopped 1/2 cup
Curry leaves 8-10
Tomatoes, finely chopped 2 medium
Turmeric 1/4 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Crushed black pepper 1 teaspoon
Lemon Juice 1 teaspoon
Cilantro, finely chopped 1/4 cup

For Chettinad Masala :-

Coconut, scraped 1/2 cup
Coriander seeds  1 teaspoon
Cumin seeds 1/2 teaspoon 
Fennel seeds 1 teaspoon
Dried red chilies
6-7
Green Cardamoms 3
Cloves 2-3
Cinnamon 1 inch piece

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Method :-

  • Add a pinch of salt, turmeric powder and lemon juice to the chicken. Keep it for marination for one hour
  • Heat one tablespoon of oil in a nonstick pan. Add the coconut, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, red chillies, cardamom, cloves and cinnamon and saute on medium heat for four to five minutes.
  • Cool and grind the above mixture with ginger, garlic, poppy seeds and cashew nuts and some water into a smooth paste. Put water as little as possible.
  • Heat the remaining oil in another non-stick pan.
  • Add the curry leaves and onion. Saute onion till golden brown.
  • Add the ground paste and saute for 5 minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes, salt  and mix well
  • Cook for five to seven minutes or till the oil separates.
  • Add the chicken, crushed peppercorns and saute for more five minutes.
  • Serve hot garnished with coriander leaves.

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    Notes :-

  • I have used here boneless chicken breast but you can try it with thighs or chicken with bone. The cooking time would differ.
  • You can decrease the hotness of this dish by reducing amount of red chillies.
  • If you can’t find fresh coconut you can use the dried coconut powder.
  • This curry is known for the flavors, the spice and the aroma due to its fresh grounded spices. You can get ready made store bought masala but it will not justify the real taste of this dish. 

dahi bhindi

Hope you all had very good Memorial Day long weekend. Its been a while I have posted anything on my blog. Okra is one of my favorite vegetable and I love to try different recipes using it. I love its crispiness after deep/shallow frying. The dish which I have tried here is scrumptious and delicious and was surprised to not see it in the menu of Indian restaurants in the USA. I think this dish will be a winner in the restaurants and people will surely like it (of course, if properly made). Dahi Bhindi can be cooked in 3 different ways (that I know of) – Rajasthani, Kerala and Hyderabadi style (each representing different states, flavors and culture of India). This particular recipe follows the Hyderabadi style adapted from Tarla Dalal (famous Indian food writer/chef) with some variations. The creamy texture of the gravy with crisp okras will just amaze you to think how simple dishes can sometimes be so incredible. This will definitely make you more hungry. Hope you would love it like I do.

Ingredients :-

Bhindi/Okra, Washed, dried and chopped
2 cups
Onion, Finely chopped 1 large
Tomatoes, Finely chopped
2 large
Ginger-Garlic Paste
1 teaspoon
Sugar
1 teaspoon
Yogurt, beaten
1 cup
Grated Coconut, Frozen/Fresh 1 tablespoon
Cashew Nuts 6-8
Warm milk 3-4 tablespoon
Kasoori Methi/ Dried Fenugreek Leaves
1 tablespoon
Garam Masala
1 teaspoon
Red chilli powder
1 teaspoon
Turmeric Powder
1/2 teaspoon
Amchur Powder/Dried Mango Powder
1/2-1 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Coriander Powder
1/2 teaspoon
Oil
1-2 tablespoon


For tempering :-

Mustard Seeds
1 tablespoon
Curry Leaves
6-7
Cumin/Jeera
1/2 teaspoon
Urad Dal/Split Black Lentils
1 teaspoon
Red Chillies, Halved
2-3
Hing/Asafoetida
A pinch
Oil
1 tablespoon

Method :-

  • Soak the cashews in warm milk for about 10 minutes.
  • Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a pan and add okra pieces to it. Saute the okras on high flame till it crisp.
  • Remove and drain okras on a tissue paper. Keep them aside till needed.
  • Grind soaked cashews and coconut to smooth paste adding the milk used for soaking. Keep it aside.
  • Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds, cumin seeds and urad dal in it. When they crackle add red chillies, asafoetida and curry leaves.
  • Add the chopped onion and saute it until they turn light golden.
  • Add ginger-garlic paste and fry for another minute till the raw smell disappears and onion turns golden brown.
  • Now add all the dry masalas/powder (garam masala powder, red chilli powder, amchur powder, turmeric powder and coriander powder) along with Kasoori methi and fry for 2 minutes.
  • Mix the chopped tomatoes and fry it until tomatoes turns mushy and oil separates out.
  • Now add grounded cashew-coconut paste and mix it well. Keep stirring for a minute.
  • Add yogurt, sugar and salt  to taste and mix well.
  • Depending on the consistency add 1/2 – 1  cup of water. Simmer the gravy for about 5 minutes.
  • Mix in the okra pieces and adjust the seasonings according to taste. You can add more water if consistency is thick and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  • Serve hot with Roti/Indian bread or Rice.

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Note :-

  • You can even deep fry the okras. That will turn the okras more crispy. I prefer pan frying for healthy option.
  • Make sure okras are well dried before you cut.
  • Cook okras without adding any salt and do not cover. This will reduce / remove the stickiness in the Okra.
  • Adding sugar is optional to reduce the sourness of the dish.
  • You can save some of the tempering to add it at last as garnishing.

badam pista kulfi

Kulfi is a very popular Indian ice cream. According to Wikipedia “Kulfi” can be termed as ice cream because of its similar appearance and taste but as it is denser and creamer it is more sort of a distinct category of frozen dairy based dessert. It is a perfect dessert presentation wise, as it takes longer to melt due to its consistency. Kulfi makes me nostalgic and reminds me those North Indian summer days when we use to wait for Kulfiwallahs (street vendors) to buy this delicious & heavenly frozen treats. The Kulfiwallahs used to carry big matkas (large earthenware pot) full of Kulfis and used to serve this Kulfis on large cleaned leaves which was a very Eco friendly approach. In our childhood, me, my brothers and friends used to roam around them asking for some free treats (parents didn’t allow us to buy it since they feared it might be bad for our health) :).

Kulfis are often served as rose flavored Falooda Kulfi (Kulfi with rice noodles) along with other ingredients. Here I am posting my 1st frozen dessert Badam (Almond) Pista (Pistachios) Kulfi. I plan to make Falooda Kulfi as summer is approaching soon.

Ingredients :-

Khoya/Mawa, Grated
1/4 cup
Milk
6 cups
Sugar
1/4 cup
Saffron/Kesar
a pinch
Condensed Milk
1 can
Pistachios, coarsely ground
15-20
Almonds, coarsely ground
15-20
Cardamom Powder
a pinch

Method :-

  • Heat the milk in a thick bottom pan or non stick pan on low heat. When the milk begins to boil add saffron to it. Boil the milk till it reduces to half on very low heat. Take care that milk doesn’t stick to the pan.
  • Add the condensed milk, sugar, almonds, pistachios, cardamom powder and mix well. Cook for three to four minutes stirring continuously.
  • Take the pan off the heat and set aside to cool the mixture.
  • Add the khoya and mix well. Pour into individual small bowls and place them in the freezer to set. When well set, demold and serve immediately. It will about 7-8 hours to set the Kulfis.
  • To demold the Kulfi, place the mold under running water for few seconds.

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Note :-

  • You can use Kulfi molds or Popsicle molds as it gives the proper shape of kulfi. If you don’t have Popsicle mold you can use small paper cups and place cellophane wrap on top of the cup and freeze. Take it out with the help of ice cream stick.
  • You can also try different  variations by adding various types of fruit flavors, coconut powder or even chocolate to it.
  • If you are using sweetened condensed milk then adjust sugar accordingly.
  • To make homemade khoya/mawa you can go here

cholay biryani

Biryanis are visual delights – a beautiful combination of fluffy fragrant rice, richly spiced vegetables/meat, flavorful nuts and most often, orange strands of exotic saffron. Originally, as said biryani was invented by Mughal and north India was the main center of it but soon this fragrant food found favor with the Nawabs of Hyderabad and Lucknow. Accompanied with a yogurt salad, biryani is undoubtedly delightful and complete meal, be it non veg or veg version. Whether you eat it as a one-dish meal or as part of an Indian feast, it’s well worth the effort to prepare. The Biryani mentioned here is one unusual kind which you will rarely find in restaurants. Just follow the steps and it will come out very delicious and beautiful!

Ingredients :-

Chickpeas/Kabuli Chana
1 cup
Basmati Rice
1 1/2 cup
Green Cardamom
5-6
Black Cardamom
2-3
Bay Leaf
2-3
Clove
2-3
Tea Leaf
2 Tablespoon
Oil
3-4 Tablespoon
Onion, Sliced
1 medium
Ginger Paste
1 tablespoon
Garlic Paste 1 tablespoon
Green Chilli Paste
1 teaspoon
Chole Masala
2 teaspoon
Salt
To taste
Red Chilli Powder
1 teaspoon
Saffron
Few strands
Milk
1/4 cup
Yogurt
1/2 Cup
Fried Onion 1/2 Cup
Mint Leaves
Few
Ginger, thin strips
One inch piece
Kewra water
1 teaspoon

Method :-

  • Soak kabuli chana overnight in four cups of water.
  • Rinse the rice 3-4 times until the water runs clear.
  • Soak rice in three cups of water for about half an hour. Drain it.
  • Boil four cups of water in a deep pan with salt,black cardamom,green cardamoms, bay leaves and cloves.
  • Add rice to boiling water. Cook until the rice is just tender and chewy (neither soft nor crunchy,3/4th done), about 10 minutes. Drain excess water.
  • Drain the chickpeas and pressure cook in four cups of water with salt and tea leaves tied in a piece of muslin cloth, till tender.
  • Remove the muslin cloth bag and drain kabuli chana.
  • Heat two tablespoons oil in a non stick deep pan, add onion and sauté. Add garlic paste, ginger paste, green chilli paste and continue to saute till fragrant.
  • Add chholay masala and red chilli powder and mix. Add the boiled chana and mix.
  • Mix saffron and milk and heat it in the microwave for one minute.
  • Add salt to the chholay and mix. Remove it from heat . Whisk the yogurt in a large bowl and add the cooked cholay into it. Mix well and marinate it for about one hour.
  • Take a broad pan and add half of the marinated cholay into it. Spread half rice over it. Drizzle half the fried onions, half the mint leaves and ginger strips.
  • Spread the remaining cholay and then rice. Drizzle the saffron milk, the remaining fried onions and remaining mint leaves. At the end drizzle Kewra water. Cover the lid tightly.
  • Preheat the oven and place the biryani pot and cook for ten minutes. If you are using the slow cooking method on direct heat, place the sealed vessel on a tawa.
  • Serve hot with any kind of raita and salad.

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Note :-

  • You can even use brown Basmati rice for Biryanis.
  • If the rice gets cook more then what desired keep it in freeze for about 1-2 hour.This will help in separating the grains.
  • You can also add boiled potatoes to this dish. Just saute it in little oil and marinate it along with chickpeas.