Tuesday, December 31, 2013

PEAS PULAO


INGREDIENTS:
1) 1 1/4 Cup Basmati Rice
2) 1 Onion chopped
3) 1 Cup Peas
4) 1/2 Teaspoon Garam Masala
5) 1/2 Teaspoon Red Chilli Powder
6) 1/2 Teaspoon Jeera/Cummin Powder
7) 1 Tablespoon Oil
8) 1 Teaspoon Jeera/Cummin seeds
9) 2 - 3 Long/Cloves
10) 1" piece Dalchini/Cinnamon

PREPARATION TIME: 30 Minutes

HOW TO PREPARE:
* In a wok, add oil and heat it. Add long, dalchini and jeera to crackle
* Add Onions and sauté for few minutes till they turn pink in color
* Add Peas and cook for 2 - 3 minutes
* Add salt, garam masala, red chilli, jeera powder and mix well
* Add washed rice and mix well
* Add 3 Cups of water( Double the quantity of rice)
* Cover with lid and let it cook for 10 minutes on a low flame
* If still not cooked(Depends on rice quality), then add 1/2 cup water, cook for 2-3 minutes
* Turn off gas and let it be covered for 5 minutes
* Serve hot with chilled curd/yogurt


Sunday, December 29, 2013

BRINJAL PAKODAS


INGREDIENTS:
1) 2 Long thin baigan/brinjal/eggplant
2) 1 Cup Besan/Chikpea flour
3) 1 Teaspoon cornflour
4) 1 Teaspoon ginger-green chilli paste
5) 2 Teaspoon kasoori methi(Optional)
6) 1/2 Teaspoon carom/ ajwain seeds
7) 1 Teaspoon turmeric/haldi powder
8) 1 Teaspoon red chilli powder
9) Salt to taste
10) 1 Teaspoon oil
11) Oil for Frying
12) Coriander and Chaat masala to sprinkle for garnish

PREPARATION TIME: 20 Minutes

HOW TO PREPARE:
* Cut the Brinjal into thin disc shapes and keep aside
* For Batter mix cornflour, besan and ginger garlic paste
* To above mix add salt, red chilli, turmeric, ajwain, and kasoori methi
* Finally add 1 teaspoon oil and mix well to form a batter
* In a wok heat oil for frying
* Dip each brinjal disc in batter and put in wok for deep frying
* when golden brown take them out on a kitchen napkin to drain excess oil
* Sprinkle Chaat Masala and Freshly chopped coriander leaves
* Serve hot with Tomato or coriander chutney


Sunday, December 22, 2013

BREAD ROLLS


INGREDIENTS:
1) Bread Slices (1 Slice per roll)
2) 4 - 5 Potatoes
3) 2 Green Chillies
4) 1/2 Teaspoon Ajwain/carom seeds
5) 2 Onions
6) 1/2 Teaspoon Red Chilly Powder
7) 1/2 Teaspoon Jeera/Cummin Powder
8) 1/2 Teaspoon Garam Masala
9) 1/4 Teaspoon Mint/Pudina Powder
10) Few Coriander Leaves
11) Oil for Deep Frying
12) Salt to Taste

PREPARATION TIME: 15 Minutes

HOW TO PREPARE:

FOR FILLING:
* Boil the potatoes, peel and keep aside
* Chop the onions and green chillies and add it to a bowl
* Add Ajwain, Red Chilly, Jeera, garam masala, pudina and salt to it
* Mash the potatoes and add it to the above mix
* Add Coriander Leaves and mix well
FOR ROLLS: * Take a bread slice and dip it in water and take out as soon as you dip
* Between both palms squeeze water from bread keeping the slice shape intact
* Add a spoon full of potato filling and close from all sides
* Close the bread such that filling does not come out
* Make any shape you want by pressing it between palms
* Once done, fry all rolls and serve hot with tomato or mint sauce


Friday, December 20, 2013

ALOO BHUNJIYA


INGREDIENTS:
1) 5-6 Potatoes
2) 2 Tablespoon Mustard Oil
3) 1 Teaspoon Black Mustard Seeds
4) 1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder
5) 1/4 Teaspoon Red Chilly Powder
6) 2 Green Chillies
7) Salt to taste
8) Few dried Mint/Pudina Leaves
9) Coriander Leaves Chopped for garnish

PREPARATION TIME: 20 Mins

HOW TO PREPARE:
* Cut the potatoes in French fries style, if possible thinner than that and keep aside
* Cut the chillies into long slices and keep aside
* In a wok add oil and crackle the mustard seeds
* Add Turmeric and immediately add potatoes, cook covered for few minutes
* When potatoes are half cooked, add salt, red chilly and green chilly
* Cook again for few minutes, then add mint leaves
* When cooked, garnish with coriander and serve hot with parathas or dal rice
* When cooked for kids, avoid green chillies and reduce the quantity of red chilly


Thursday, December 19, 2013

METHI (FENUGREEK)VEG PULAO


INGREDIENTS:
1) 1 Cup Basmati Rice
2) 1 Bunch of Methi/ fenugreek Leaves
3) 1 Potato Chopped
4) 1 Tomato Chopped
5) 2 Onion Sliced
6) 1/2 Cup Carrots Chopped
7) 1/2 Cup Peas
8) 2 Tablespoon Oil
9) 1 Teaspoon Jeera/Cummin Seeds
10) 2 - 3 Cloves/Long
11) 1/2 Teaspoon Red Chilly Powder
12) 1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder
13) 1/2 Teaspoon Garam Masala
14) Salt to Taste

PREPARATION TIME: 20 Mins

HOW TO PREPARE:
* Wash fenugreek leaves, chop it and keep aside
* Wash Rice and keep aside
* In a wok, Add oil and crackle jeera seeds and cloves
* Add in potato, peas, tomato and carrots, sauté for few minutes
* Add in onions and sauté till onions turn a soft pink in color
* Add turmeric and fenugreek leaves and mix well
* Add in salt, red chilly, and garam masala powder, sauté for few minutes
* Add in rice and mix well
* Add 3 Cups of water to the above and put the lid
* Keep checking in between, Cook till water is absorbed and rice is done
* Serve hot with fresh chilled curd and enjoy


Monday, December 16, 2013

15 USEFUL INDIAN COOKING TIPS


USEFUL COOKING TIPS:

1) To make softer chapatis, add salt and little oil to flour, knead it with boiled water, keep it for 15 minutes before making chapatis

2) To make softer idlis add soaked rice flakes or sago in the batter

3) Do not refrigerate tomatoes and citrus fruits, It kills flavors, nutrients, and textures

4) Rub hands with dry salt to remove onion and garlic odor

5) When boiling corns on the cob, add a pinch of sugar to the water, It brings out the corn's natural sweetness

6) Leave butter and eggs at room temperature overnight, to get best results while baking

7) When cooking vegetables don't add salt until the end. Adding salt early can dehydrate vegetables and reduce their nutritional value

8) Brine Poultry Before Preparing, to give it the super juicy flavour

9) If you forget to soak chana/Rajma overnight. Just soak the chana/Rajma in the boiling water for an hour before cooking

10) Before cooking cauliflower keep it soaking in water mixed with a teaspoon of vinegar for 15 minutes. It loosens the dirt and kills insects that may be lodged between the florets

11) Knock on a watermelon, If It sounds hollow, its ripe. If it doesn't sound hollow, it's unripe

12) Test egg's freshness by mixing 2 teaspoons of salt in a cup of cold water and place the egg in water, If it floats it is an old egg, if it sinks, it's fresh

13) While cooking chicken or meat, first cook it over high flame to seal the juices and then lower down the heat and cook till its tender

14) In warm climate bananas tend to get over-ripe. To stop this process, put bananas in the frigde. The skin may turn black, but banana will remain firm

15) Soak almonds in a cup of boiling water for 10 minutes .The skin will peel off easily


Thursday, December 12, 2013

DAL CHAWAL BHINDI - Tastiest Food


Its the most simple everyday lunch or dinner cooked in any indian household.
In North India instead of toor dal chana dal is prepared,
in south india, people add a little sambhar powder and some vegetables to make sambhar with rice
In east india most households prepare the dal as I have mentioned below, as I have lived most of my life there in east india,
this is the most easiest food and most tastiest food on earth!
Toor Dal being the most popular pulses, found its origin in eastern parts of peninsular india.

INGREDIENTS:

FOR DAL :
1) 1 Cup Toor Dal/Arhar Dal/ Split Pigeon Peas/Yellow split Peas
2) 1 Onion
3) 1 Tomato
4) Few Curry Leaves
5) 2 Tablespoon oil
6) 1 Teaspoon Jeera/ Cummin Seeds
7) 1 Teaspoon Black Mustard seeds
8) 1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder
9) 1/2 Teaspoon Garam Masala
10) 1 Teaspoon Coriander Powder
11) 1 Teaspoon Amchoor Powder / Dry Mango Powder
12) 1/2 Teaspoon Red Chilly Powder
13) 1 Green Chilli Chopped
14) Pinch of Asafoetida
15) 5-6 Cloves of garlic chopped
16) 3 Cups of water
17) Salt to taste
18) Coriander Leaves chopped for garnish

FOR BHINDI/OKRA:
1) 1/2 Kg Bhindi/Okra
2) 2 Onions sliced
3) 2 Tablespoon Oil
4) 1 Teaspoon Coriander Powder
5) 1/2 Teaspoon Red Chilly Powder
6) 1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder
7) 1/4 Teaspoon Jeera/Cummin Powder
8) 1/4 Teaspoon Amchoor/ Dry Mango Powder
9) Salt to taste

PREPARATION TIME: 30 Mins

HOW TO PREPARE:

TOOR DAL -
* Chop Onion and Tomato and keep aside
* In a Pressure Cooker, add oil and let it heat up
* Add in Jeera and mustard seeds and let it crackle
* Add In Asafoetida, Turmeric, Curry Leaves and Chopped Garlic
* Let the garlic burn a little to get a garlicky flavour
* Add Chopped Onion, tomato and green chilly, and let it cook for few minutes
* Add in salt, Coriander, red chilly powder, garam Masala and amchoor, Mix well
* Add Dal and water and close the lid, give 3 whistles the cook for 5 mins in simmer
* If cooking in a heavy bottom vessel the boil dal with salt and turmeric
* When done keep it aside
* In another pan follow from step 1 to 7
* Add the above mix to the boiled dal and cook for 10 mins
* Serve hot with boiled rice and papad!

BHINDI/OKRA -
* In a wok, add oil and turmeric powder
* Add in chopped bhindi and let it cook open for 10 mins
* Add in Onions and cook till onions become soft
* Add All Dry masalas ( Coriander, red chilly, Amchoor, Jeera and salt), mix well
* Do not close the lid of wok, bhindi will become slimy
* Cook for few minutes, with open lid till bhindi is soft.
* Serve hot with dal and rice with coriander as a garnish


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

RARE MUSHROOM - RUGDA



RUGDA

ABOUT RUGDA (A RARE MUSHROOM)

Rugda is a form of root and mushroom, is found in abundance in Jharkhand.
Rugda is found in the forests of Bundu, Tamar, Pithoria and some other areas in jharkhand. Tribal women go to these forests early in the morning
and collect these mushrooms which is found primarily under the sal trees.
Its a seasonal(Monsoon) favourite, which mainly the tribal men and women sell in baskets on the roadsides.
Before making a vegetable, its needs to be cleaned and washed properly.
In Ranchi( Jharkhand's Capital), during monsoon you find rugda everywhere in markets, especially kutchery road
When cooked dry it takes a long time but has tastes much better than other mushroom dishes
When cooked in a pressure cooker for gravy dish, it beats all non-veg dishes!

RECIPE
INGREDIENTS :
1) 500gms Rugda Cleaned and washed
2) 2 Tablespoon oil
3) 2 Onions Chopped
4) 1 Tablespoon garlic and ginger paste
5) Salt to taste
6) 2 Teaspoon Red Chilli Powder
7) 1/2 Teaspoon Sugar
8) 2 Green Chillies chopped
9) 1/2 Teaspoon turmeric powder
10) 1/2 Tablespoon Cumin Powder
11) 1 Tablespoon Coriander Powder
12) 1 Teaspoon Garam Masala
13) 1 Cinnamon stick
14) 4 Nos Whole Cloves
15) 1 Bay Leaf
16) 2 whole Cardamom
17) 1 Cup Tomato Puree
18) 2 Cups Water

PREPARATION TIME: 1 Hour

HOW TO PREPARE:
* In a heavy bottom pan, heat oil, Add rudga and fry till they are brown
* Remove the rugda and keep aside. Add remaining oil in the pan
* Add Bayleaf, cinnamon, clove and whole cardamom
* Add onions and Red chilli powder. Sauté till onions look translucent
* Add garlic ginger paste and chopped green chillies. Sauté about 2 minutes.
* Add Turmeric, Cumin, Coriander powder and sauté for about 2 minutes
* Add water and bring it to boil, Now reduce heat to low and add the fried rugda
* Cover the pan and simmer one hour or till the rugda is almost done
* Remove the cover, add the tomato puree, sugar, Garam Masala powder and salt
* Cook uncovered over medium heat for another 5 minutes * Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with the chopped greens Coriander
* Serve hot with Chapatti, Roti, or any other Indian bread or even with Steamed rice


Monday, December 9, 2013

CHOCOLATE HONEY SOFT BUNS


INGREDIENTS:
1) 4 - 5 Soft Buns
2) 2 Chocolate bars
3) Sugar to sprinkle
4) 1/2 Cup Candied Cherries
5) 1/4 Cup milk
6) 10 Tablespoons of honey
7) Any other garnish you wish to have

PREPARATION TIME: 10 mins

HOW TO PREPARE:
* Candied Cherries, Soft buns, chocolate bars - get it from market
* Melt one chocolate bar in a double boiler
* Add Milk to it to make it runny
* Slice the soft buns to make two halves
* Apply the runny chocolate mix on both the inner sides of buns
* Sprinkle some sugar and candied cherries in between
* Cover the bun with the other half
* In a bowl crush the other chocolate bar
* On each bun sprinkle crushed chocolate pieces
* Pour 2 Tablespoon of honey on each bun
* Slice the buns in half or quarter and serve chilled
* Children love it!!


Sunday, December 8, 2013

GAJAR MATAR / CARROT PEAS MIX


INGREDIENTS:
1) 1/2 Kg Carrots
2) 2 Cups Peas
3) 2 Onions
4) 2 Tomatoes
5) 1 Tablespoon Ginger Garlic Paste
6) 2 Green Chillies
7) 1 Tablespoon Oil
8) 1/2 Teaspoon Cummin Seeds/ Jeera
9) Pinch of Asafoetida
10) 1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder
11) 1/2 Teaspoon Red Chilli Powder
12) 1/2 Teaspoon Garam Masala
13) 1/4 Teaspoon Jeera Powder
14) Salt to taste
15) Coriander Leaves for Garnish

PREPARATION TIME: 20 mins

HOW TO PREPARE:
* Make Onion Paste and keep aside
* Make tomatoes and green chilly paste and keep aside
* Wash and Dice the carrots and wash the peas and keep aside
* In a Cooker add oil, Cummin seeds and asafoetida, let it crackle
* Add Onion paste and ginger garlic paste, Saute for few minutes
* Add Tomotoes and green chilly paste, cook till water is absorbed
* Add Turmeric, garam masala, jeera, red chilly powder and salt
* Add in Carrots and Peas and mix well
* Add 1 1/2 Cup of water and close the cooker lid
* After 2 Whistles put off burner and let the vegetable cook in its own steam in cooker
* After few minutes open lid
* If water still there in cooker then cook with open lid for few minutes till water evaporates
* Serve hot , with Coriander leaves as garnish.


Thursday, December 5, 2013

SOOJI / SUJI UPMA


INGREDIENTS:
1) 1 Cup Sooji/Semolina
2) 1 Tablespoon Oil
3) 1 Teaspoon Black Mustard Seeds
4) 1 Teaspoon Chana Dal
5) 1 Teaspoon Urad Dal
6) 1 Tablespoon Cashew nuts
7) 1 Tablespoon Raw Peanuts
8) 1/4 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder
9) 1 Dry Red Chilly
10) 1 Pinch Asafoetida
11) Few Curry Leaves
12) 1/2" Ginger grated
13) 1 Onion Chopped
14) 1/2 Cup Peas and chopped carrots
15) Salt to taste
16) Green Chilly to taste
17) 2 Cups of Water
18) Fresh Coriander to garnish

PREPARATION TIME: 15 mins

HOW TO PREPARE:
* In a wok, add 1 Teaspoon of oil and add Sooji
* Roast till it starts to get golden color. Keep stirring to avoid sooji to burn
* Once done, keep it aside for further use
* Boil peas and carrots and keep it aside
* In a Non stick pan add oil and mustard seeds and let it crackle
* Add in Channa Dal and Peanuts. Cook for few seconds and add urad dal
* Add Dry red chilly, turmeric powder and asafoetida and stir well
* Add onion and green chilly, sauté for a few minutes
* Add Curry leaves, Peas, carrots, and salt, mix well
* Add Ginger and sauté for few minutes on lower heat
* Add sooji and Cashew nuts and mix well
* Add water and keep mixing till all the water gets absorbed by sooji
* Cover and cook for 2 -3 minutes. Done!
* Serve and Garnish with Coriander


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

ALOO GOBHI


INGREDIENTS:
1) 1 Cauliflower
2) 4 Medium Sized Potatoes
3) 2 Teaspoon Oil
4) 1/2 Teaspoon Jeera / Cummin Seeds
5) 1/2 Teaspoon Haldi / Turmeric Powder
6) 1/2 Teaspoon Coriander powder
7) 1/2 Teaspoon Red Chilli Powder
8) 1/2 Teaspoon Jeera Powder
9) 1/2 Teaspoon Garam Masala
10) Salt to taste

PREPARATION TIME: 15 mins

HOW TO PREPARE:
* Chop the cauliflower into small florets, wash and keep aside
* Chop the potatoes into small pieces and keep aside
* In a wok, Add oil, jeera seeds and let it crackle
* Add Turmeric Powder and potatoes, sauté for few minutes
* Add Cauliflower florets and sauté till cauliflower and potatoes go soft
* Add Coriander, jeera, red chilli powder, garam masala and salt, Mix well
* Add half a cup of water and cook with lid covered till its done
* Garnish with Coriander leaves and serve hot with chapatis and parathas


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

GAJAR KA HALWA / CARROT HALWA



INGREDIENTS:
1) 1 Kg Red Carrots
2) 2 Cups Sugar
3) 1 Ltr Milk
4) 1 Teaspoon Cardamom powder
5) 1 Cup Nuts ( Almonds, Cashew, and Raisins)
6) 1/2 Cup Ghee or Clarified Butter

PREPARATION TIME: 1 Hour

HOW TO PREPARE:
* Peel and grate the carrots and keep aside
* Boil milk and sugar together till sugar dissolves and keep aside
* In a Wok add Ghee and grated carrots
* Sauté for 10 - 15 mins till carrots change color and become soft
* Add in cardamom powder and mix well
* Add Milk and sugar mix and let it cook till milk is absorbed
* Keep mixing in between
* Add Chopped nuts and mix well
* Saute till the mix leaves oil or comes together
* Garnish with cashew nuts and serve hot


CORIANDER / CILANTRO LEAVES





CORIANDER / CILANTRO
Cilantro is a popular Mediterranean herb commonly recognised in India as coriander or dhania patta. It is part of most Indian kitchens and very often used to garnish curries, salads and soups. A simple aloo ki sabzi tastes much better with a liberal garnishing of coriander.
It is an annual herb. Coriander is native to regions spanning from southern Europe and North Africa to southwestern Asia.
The leaves are variously referred to as coriander leaves, fresh coriander, Chinese parsley, or (in North America) cilantro.

CORIANDER LEAVES NUTRITIONAL VALUE:
Cilantro is an excellent source of minerals like potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, and magnesium.
It is also rich in many vital vitamins including folic-acid, vitamin-A, beta carotene and vitamin-C that are essential for optimum health.

CORIANDER LEAVES 10 HEALTH BENEFITS:
* It lowers bad cholesterol (LDL) and increases the levels of good cholesterol (HDL).

* It helps in the reduction of fats and thus aids weight loss.

* When eaten fresh and raw, coriander tremendously reduces sugar level, thus good for diabetes patients.

* A very good food for digestive system. Promotes liver functions and bowel movements. Prevents flatulence when taken with hot water. Coriander leaves are a good source of roughage and fiber too, thus relieving gastrointestinal problems.

* Coriander contains anti-inflammatory properties. This is why it is good against inflammatory diseases such as arthritis.

* It is good for the eyes. Antioxidants in coriander prevent eye diseases and problems. It’s a good remedy in the treatment of conjunctivitis.

* Coriander is effective in relieving dermatological conditions. When mixed with turmeric powder or paste, coriander reduces acne and provides protection from eczema, dryness and fungal infections.

* Coriander aids in proper functioning of liver and helps prevent cancer and epileptic seizures

* Coriander prevents involuntary contraction of muscles and is effective in fighting cold

* Natural compounds in coriander leaves remove toxic heavy metals from the body without any side effects. Accumulation of heavy metals can cause many dangerous health problems including memory loss and Alzheimer’s Disease

This humble herb can be grown in your kitchen garden. So, make it a part of your kitchen and add more taste to your platter. And also derive benefits from its health properties.

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