Monday, November 25, 2013

Vegetable Momos

                    Momos are steamed dumplings originating from the Nepal-Tibet region. Traditionally, they are made with meat filling in the mountains. The vegetarian version is made with veggies and tofu. Here is one of the vegetarian versions.

  • 1 cup Refined flour (Maida)
  • 2 tsp Oil
  • 1/4 cup grated Carrots
  • 1/4 cup grated Cauliflower
  • 1/4 cup grated Cabbage
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped Bell Peppers
  • 2 finely chopped Green chilies
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped Cilantro
  • 2 tsp Black Pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • Water
  • Sieve the flour
  • Add 2 tsp Oil, salt and water to make a smooth semi-soft dough. Cover with a damp cloth and keep it aside
  • In a separate bowl, mix the grated carrot, cauliflower, bell peppers and cabbage
  • Now add the green chilies and cilantro and mix well
  • Then add salt and pepper and mix it well and keep it aside.
  • Now, to make momos, knead the flour properly and divide into smaller portions.
  • Roll out each portion into a thin disc.
  • Put about 1 tbsp stuffing mixture in the center and fold towards the center from all 4 sides and press to seal.
  • Now steam these dumplings in a steamer spaced properly for about 10-12 minutes

  • Serve hot with some Thai chili sauce.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Szechuan Black-Eyed Pea Salad

                   Recently both me and my husband have been trying different salads. Today I tried a different type of salad which is a little spicy, a little tangy, loaded with protein and fiber with a hint of Chinese taste.

  • 3 cups Black-Eyed peas
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped green Bell Pepper
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped Onion
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped Tomato
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped Cilantro
  • 1 minced Jalapeno
  • 2 Avocado cubed
  • 2 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 3 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • 2 tbsp Szechuan Sauce
  • 2 tsp Black Pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • Cook the black eyed peas. I prefer to use pressure cooker to boil it. If using a pressure cooker, cook for just 2 whistles. Make sure they are not overcooked else they will become mushy.
  • Once the black eyed peas are cooked, drain the water and keep them aside
  • Mix together the black eyed peas, bell pepper, onion, tomato and jalapeno in a large bowl
  • Toss avocado and lemon juice in a separate bowl. Add salt and pepper to the bowl
  • Add the avocado mixture to the black-eyed peas mixture
  • Then, whisk together olive oil, vinegar, Szechuan sauce in the bowl used for avocado
  • Add this dressing to the mixture and toss it well
  • Finally add cilantro and serve

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Pad Kee Mao (Drunken Noodles)

           Pad Kee Mao or as it is more commonly known, Drunken noodles, is one of the popular noodle dishes served in Thai restaurants in the US. This is the dish that I order most frequently and absolutely love. So, I decided to try it at home today with a bit of my twist on it. It was a big risk because my husband is not a fan of this dish but, thankfully, he loved it.

  • 16 oz flat, wide rice noodles (I got the fresh pre-cut)
  • 1 Onion, cubed
  • 1 Bell Pepper cubed
  • 1 cup Broccoli florets
  • 1 cup Tomatoes, cubed 
  • 3-4 Garlic cloves
  • 2 Thai chillies
  • 3 tbsp Soy sauce
  • 2-3 tbsp Chili-Garlic sauce
  • 1.5 cup cubes of Firm Tofu
  • 8-10 fresh Basil leaves
  • 1 tbsp Oil
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • Take a pan, add little oil to it and fry the tofu until golden brown and keep it aside.
  • Take the garlic cloves and Thai chillies and pound to a rough paste and keep it aside.
  • Chop all the vegetables and keep it ready
  • Heat some oil in a wok or a pan over high heat, and add the chilli-garlic mixture to it
  • Stir for a couple of minutes till the garlic starts to turn golden brown.
  • Now, add the onions, peppers and broccoli and toss them.
  • Saute for another 2-3 minutes and then add the tomatoes and fried tofu and mix it well.
  • Add the Soy sauce, chili-garlic sauce, salt and pepper and toss it again.
  • Then add noodles and let the noodles spread apart and mix well
  • Let the noodles be in the pan for about 2-3 minutes and absorb the sauce, make sure to flip it once or twice
  • When the liquid is all absorbed, take it from the heat and add the basil leaves and mix well
  • Serve hot

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Batata Vada

                   It has been a year since I started writing this blog to share my rasoi (cooking) experiments. Time has flown by so quickly.

                  Today, I am sharing a recipe which I grew up with in Mumbai. It is the most ubiquitous street food in Mumbai and is an everyday food for many Mumbaikars. It's the Indian slider, the Vada Pav. The dumpling-like balls between the buns, Batata Vada, are primarily made of mashed potatoes. They can also be eaten as-is with a dipping chutney, and are a great option for snacks as well as dinner. I hope you enjoy this Indian street food.


For Vada
  • 6 Potatoes (Boiled and mashed)
  • 3-4 Garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped Cilantro
  • 2 tbsp Green Chilli paste
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 4-5 Curry leaves
  • A pinch of Asafoetida
  • 1 tsp Turmeric powder
For Batter
  • 1 tsp Red Chilli powder
  • 1 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp Oil
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 cup Besan (Gram flour)
  • Take the mashed potatoes in a big bowl.
  • Add the green chilli paste, garlic and salt to the bowl. You may adjust the chili paste according to the desired spiciness
  • Now heat about 1 tsp oil in a small pan.
  • Then add the asafoetida, curry leaves and the mustard seeds to the oil.
  • Once the seeds starts to crackle, add the cumin seeds and then add the turmeric powder
  • Now, add this oil mixture to the potatoes
  • Add cilantro and mix it well.
  • Divide the mixture into 20 portions and make lemon sized balls/rounds. Keep them aside
  • To prepare the batter, take the gram flour in a bowl and add salt, red chilli powder and turmeric powder to it
  • Now, slowly add water and stir properly. Make sure that there are no lumps in the batter. It should be a thin batter
  • Heat sufficient oil in a kadai (Pan)
  • Dip the potato balls in the batter and add to the oil 
  • Deep fry the potatoes balls in the hot oil until they are golden brown on all sides
  • Drain on absorbent paper. Serve hot with chutney and sauces of your choice.

  • They are best served with dry Garlic chutney and lightly fried whole green chillies
  • To make a slider, apply the the green chili-cilantro chutney and sweet date chutney on the buns, for the desired sweet/spicy level. Place 1-2 vadas in between the buns and Enjoy!!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Baked Stuffed Tomatoes

         Today, I got back late from work and was too tired to make an elaborate dinner. I was thinking to make something that is really quick and healthy but still tasty. 
           So here is a quick 10 minute recipe for Baked Stuffed Tomatoes. You may experiment with different kinds of stuffing, and you may also use other vegetables like Bell Peppers or Mushrooms as the base instead of the Tomatoes.

  • 4  medium firm Tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup Cheese (I used a combination of Mexican and Italian cheese blend)
  • 1/4 cup Chopped Onions
  • 1/4 cup Chopped Bell Peppers
  • 1 tsp Crushed Red Pepper
  • 8-10 fresh Mint Leaves
  • 1 tsp Dried Basil
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  •  Salt to taste
  • Preheat the Oven to 400o F.
  • Cut the tomatoes into half
  • Then scoop out the inside of each tomato carefully with a knife and keep it aside
  • Take the onions, peppers,mint leaves, cheese and the tomato pulp in a bowl
  • Now, add the basil, pepper flakes, salt and pepper and mix it well
  • Place the tomatoes on a baking sheet with the cut side up
  • Put some stuffing mixture, about 2 spoons in each of the tomato half
  • Bake for about 10 minutes, until the cheese is melted and lightly browned
  • Serve warm and enjoy

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Chickpea Patties

                I am sure everyone must have tried Falafels, which are flavorful Mediterranean chickpea balls. I really love the Falafels, but they are typically made with flour and are deep fried. So today I tried to take my spin on the Falafel without the flour and the deep frying. So here it is.

  • 3 cups Chickpeas / Garbanzo Beans
  • 1 cup chopped Onion
  • 2-3 Garlic cloves
  • 1 cup chopped Cilantro
  • 3-4 Green Chilies
  • 3 Tbsp Parsley
  • 2 tsp Black Pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • Soak the beans in water for 6-8 hours. 
  • Then cook the soaked beans. I prefer to use the pressure cooker. If using a pressure cooker, cook for 4-5 whistles or till they are cooked.
  • You can skip the above steps if using canned beans.
  • Now, drain the beans completely. They should be completely dry.
  • Take a big bowl, add the beans, onions, crushed garlic, cilantro, chili paste
  • Now add the parsley, black pepper and salt to taste
  • Mix it well. It should be of thick consistency.
  • Now, take some of the mixture in your hand and form small size balls and press them in shape of a disc. Make sure they are not too thick or too thin
  • Then, put them on a heated pan or a griddle and shallow fry them with little or no oil.
  • Serve them hot with Hummus or hot sauce. You can also use these to make a Falafel Sandwich with pocket Pita breads and some veggies.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Chocolate Shortbread Cookie

          Hi, I know its been a really long time since my last post, but it has been a real hectic couple of months. I promise to be more regular going further.

          Today I am back with a sweet treat for everyone - Chocolate Shortbread cookies. These cookies are a classic Scottish dessert and get their name from the crumbly texture.

  • 2 cup All purpose flour (Maida)
  • 3/4 cup softened Butter
  • 1/2 cup packed Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 2 cup melted Chocolate
  • Mix the melted butter and sugar in a large bowl.
  • Now add the Vanilla extract and beat at medium speed till it is creamy. If you don't have a beater, stir it thoroughly
  • Now add the flour slowly and continue mixing it on a low speed
  • Mix it till the mixture leaves the sides of the bowl and forms a smooth soft dough
  • Now divide the mixture in 3 parts, and flatten each part a bit.
  • Cover with a plastic wrap and refrigerate it for couple of hours
  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven at 375o F.
  • Now, roll out the dough a little more, and cut out the desired cookie shapes. I made the circles
  • Arrange them on a cookie sheet and bake for 7-9 minutes or till they turn golden brown.
  • Remove from oven, let it stand for 10 minutes.
  • Dip the cookies in the melted chocolate and then cool on the wire racks.
  • Once they are completely cooled, store them in an air-tight container. Enjoy!!


Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Crispy Spaghetti Balls

                     Tonight, me and my husband were in the mood for some Italian food, but wished for something different than the usual pasta dishes. So, I tried to think of some new Italian dish that would be fun, and not too difficult to make. And I thought of making Spaghetti balls with Tomato sauce. So, here is my recipe for this unorthodox Italian dish. I hope you like it.

  • 1 packet Spaghetti
  • 1 cup finely chopped Onions
  • 1 cup boiled Corn
  • 4 cups Hot Milk
  • 3/4 cup Refined flour (Maida)
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 1/2 cup Mozzarella Cheese
  • 2 tsp Black Pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 cup Semolina 
  • Oil for frying
  • Boil the Spaghetti according to the package directions. Drain and keep it aside
  • Heat some butter in a pan, and add the onions
  • Saute them for a minute or so till they are translucent.
  • Now add the refined flour and mix it well.
  • Saute the mixture till it is golden brown.
  • Then whisk it in the hot milk slowly and mix it well so that no lumps are formed.
  • Continue cooking till the mixture thickens.
  • Now mix in the corn and spaghetti. Add salt and pepper according to the taste and mix well
  • Let the mixture cool down completely.
  • In the meanwhile, heat the oil in another pan for deep frying
  • Once the mixture has cooled down, add the cheese to it and mix it well
  • Then, shape them into small balls. Roll these balls in some semolina properly
  • Fry them till they are golden and crisp.
  • Serve hot with the pasta sauce of your choice. I tried it with a reduction of this Pasta Sauce.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Tortilla Soup

            Soups are loved by everyone. And personally, both me and my husband, love having soups for dinner. They are light, tasty and nutritious. So I keep trying to make different varieties of healthy soups every now and then. Today, I tried making a Mexican specialty, the Spicy Tortilla soup.
            Tortilla soup is easy to make and is healthy and rich in fiber and protein. The best part about soups is you can customize them in a number of ways. You may add more vegetables to it, or more chillies or skip the chillies altogether. So here is my take on this Mexican delicacy.

  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped Onion
  • 1 cup finely chopped colored Bell Peppers
  • 4-5 minced Garlic cloves
  • 3-4 chopped Green Chilies/Jalapeno peppers
  • 1 cup yellow Corn
  • 15 Oz/425 gm kidney beans (I used black beans)
  • 1/3 cup Cilantro chopped
  • 1 tbsp Cumin Seeds
  • 4 cups Vegetable Broth
  • 2 tsp Lime Juice
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1/2 cup Shredded Mexican Cheese (Optional, omit it for Vegan Soup)
  • 3 Tortillas
  • To make the tortilla Strips, preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  • Cut the Tortillas in strips and place the strips on a cookie sheet or any baking pan. 
  • Place them in the oven and bake for 10 minutes or until they are crispy.
  • Meanwhile, heat the oil in a pan, and add the cumin seeds to it.
  • Once the seeds start to crackle, add the garlic and the chilies and saute it for a minute.
  • Now, add the onions and saute them till they are translucent. 
  • Then add the bell peppers and corn to it and stir for about 4-5 minutes.
  • Now add the vegetable broth. If you don't have broth, you may add water too.
  • Add the cooked beans and mix well.
  • Then add salt, pepper and lime juice and mix them well
  • Reduce the heat, cover and let it simmer for 10-12 minutes
  • To serve, pour some soup in a bowl, garnish with Cilantro, Cheese and the Tortilla strips and serve hot

Monday, April 8, 2013

Methi Mutter Malai

                  I always used to think Methi Mutter Malai (Fenugreek Peas Cream) is a dish that is slightly sweet in nature, and hence was always hesitant to try it out. But then, few days back, I had a version of this dish that was not sweet at all, but in fact was a bit on the spicier side. I loved it, but still I was hesitant to use a huge amount of cream, and then I decided to use cashew cream instead. So, here is my "healthy" take on this Indian classic.

  • 3 cups coarsely chopped Fenugreek (Methi) leaves
  • 2 cups green Peas
  • 1/2 cup sliced Onions
  • 1/2 cup raw Cashews
  • 2 Garlic cloves
  • 2-3 green Chilies
  • about 1 inch chunk of Ginger
  • 2-3 Cloves
  • 1/2 inch Cinnamon stick
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 1 tbsp Cumin Seeds
  • A pinch of Asafoetida
  • Butter
  • Heat 1 tbsp butter in a pan.
  • Add cloves, cinnamon, garlic, ginger and chilies. Saute it for a minute.
  • Now add the onions and saute them till they are translucent, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Then add this mixture to a blender or a food processor. Be careful with the hot temperature.
  • Add the cashews to the blender and puree the mixture into a smooth paste. Add a little water if necessary.
  • Keep the paste aside.
  • Meanwhile, heat 2 tbsp butter in a pan. Add asafoetida and cumin seeds.
  • Once the cumin seeds start to crackle, add the white paste and saute it for 2 minutes or till the butter starts separating from the paste.
  • Now add the fenugreek leaves and green peas to the paste and mix it well.
  • Let it cook for 2-3 minutes. Now add the milk and mix well.
  • Let it simmer on medium heat for 4-5 minutes stirring occasionally.
  • Serve hot with Paratha or Naan or any bread of your choice.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Spinach Crostini

              As you may have guessed from my previous posts, Spinach is one of my favorite greens. Considering the abundant nutrients in these little green leaves, I try to incorporate in various different dishes and always love experimenting with it

               So here is my yet another spinach dish, Spinach Crostini.

  • 1 loaf Ciabatta bread
  • 4 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Garlic clove halved
  • 3 Garlic cloves minced
  • 1/4 tsp Red pepper flakes
  • 8 cups Spinach leaves
  • 1 cup Italian Cheese (I used Mozzarella and Italian Blend mixed)
  • Salt to taste
  • Cut the bread into 1/2 inch thick slices
  • Preheat the oven at 400o F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Arrange the bread slices in a single layer on the baking sheet and drizzle them with Olive Oil.
  • Bake them for about 10 minutes or until they are light golden brown.
  • When done, let them cool for 2 minutes. 
  • Then, with the halved garlic, rub the warm toasts to give them a nice garlicky flavor
  • Set the toasts aside. Then, heat a pan over medium heat. 
  • Add 3 tbsp Olive oil
  • Add the garlic and saute it for a minute or until it is fragrant.
  • Now add the spinach and cook it for about 2-3 minutes.
  • Then add salt and red pepper flakes and mix it well
  • Remove it from heat
  • Now, using tongs, arrange this spinach mixture on top of the toasts evenly.
  • Sprinkle it with cheese.
  • Bake it for another 7-8 minutes at 400o F until the cheese melts and starts bubbling.
  • Serve hot and Enjoy!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Tomato Pepper Sauce

               My husband is a big fan of spicy food. Be it entrees, snacks or sauces, he prefers them to be really spicy. But at the same time, he doesn't like the one available in the stores as they are either too tangy for his taste or just the heat without any flavor. I ended up with more than 5 varieties of hot sauces in my refrigerator as he keeps buying different ones to find the right sauce for him.
                His passion for hot sauces motivated me to prepare it at home with the flavor, spiciness and the consistency that he likes. Here is my attempt at making the hot sauce:

  • 3 cups chopped Tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup chopped Onions
  • 2 Garlic cloves
  • 4 Jalapenos peppers
  • 2-3 Serrano peppers
  • 1 tsp Lemon Juice
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 tbsp distilled White Vinegar
  • Salt to taste
  • Chop the peppers. The seeds are the spiciest so you can either remove all the seeds or use according to the heat desired
  • Heat the Olive oil in a pan over medium heat
  • Add chopped garlic and saute it for a minute, then add the onions and the peppers
  • Saute it till the onions are soft and translucent 
  • Now add the tomatoes, vinegar, lemon juice and salt 
  • Cook until the tomatoes begin to soften 
  • Then, transfer the mixture to a blender and puree it until smooth. Be very careful while pouring the hot mixture into the blender
  • Now, sieve the puree using a fine sieve and extract out all the liquid. Use a wooden spoon to push away the solids
  • Let the sauce cool to the room temperatures for about 1.5 – 2 hours before serving 
  • You may freeze the sauce for a couple of months and use as needed. 
  • I generally have a small container in refrigerator for daily use and freeze the rest so that it lasts longer 

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Cabbage Poha

                   Yesterday, we were contemplating what to make for dinner when I realized we did not have much vegetables at home except for some cabbage. We usually prepare Cabbage curry with it, but we were tired of having the same curry so this time we decided to try something else.

           Poha (flattened/beaten Rice) is a famous Indian breakfast/snack dish which is usually had along with Onions or Potatoes, but I thought of trying it out with Cabbage. So here is my take on the classical dish.

  • 1.5 cups sliced Cabbage
  • 1 cup Poha (Flattened Rice)
  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 3-4 chopped Cashews
  • 3-4 Raisins
  • 4-5 Curry leaves
  • 1 tsp Green Chili paste
  • 1 tbsp Sugar
  • 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 2 tsp roasted Chana Daal (Daliya) i.e Split Chickpea
  • 1/2 cup chopped Cilantro
  • A pinch of Asafoetida
  • Salt to taste
  • Wash the poha under running water for a few seconds
  • Toss well to drain out excess water and keep it aside
  • Heat some oil on a pan, add Asafoetida
  • Now add the roasted Daliya and saute it for a minute or so. Then add the mustard seeds
  • Once the mustard seeds start to crackle, add the cumin seeds and curry leaves to it
  • Then add the green chili paste, cashews and raisins to it
  • After about 2 minutes, you will get a nice aroma of roasted nuts. At this point, add the sliced cabbage and mix it well
  • Let it cook for 4-5 minutes. Make sure the cabbage is little crunchy i.e. dont cook it for long time
  • Now add the salt, sugar and lemon juice and mix it well
  • Lastly add the poha and mix it well
  • Let it cook for a minute on slow flame
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve hot

Friday, February 22, 2013

Ricotta and Spinach Manicotti

                  As you may have already guessed through previous posts, both me and my husband are big lovers of Italian food. We love to explore different Italian restaurants and try different dishes.

             At one such local family owned restaurant, I got to try Manicotti, a type of stuffed pasta. I had something like this for the first time and loved it. Ever since then, I wanted to try and make it at home. So here is my attempt on this Italian classic.

  • 1 packet Manicotti Pasta Shells (around 14 shells)
  • 1 container (15 oz) Ricotta Cheese
  • 1/2 cup Italian Blend Cheese
  • 3/4 cup Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 cups chopped Spinach
  • 2-3 minced Garlic Cloves
  • 2-3 cups Pasta Sauce
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Red pepper flakes
  • Preheat the oven to 400o F
  • Cook the Manicotti Shells as per the package directions.
  • Rinse with cold water and drain
  • Chop the spinach and keep it aside
  • Meanwhile, in a bowl mix the Ricotta cheese, Italian blend cheese, half of Parmesan cheese, garlic and spinach
  • Add salt, pepper and red pepper flakes and mix it well
  • In bottom of an ungreased glass baking dish, spread a cup of pasta sauce
  • Now, fill the Manicotti with the cheese mixture and place it over the sauce in the dish
  • Repeat it with all the remaining Manicotti shells

  • Pour remaining sauce over the Manicotti
  • Sprinkle the remaining Parmesan cheese on it. 
  • Then, cover tightly with the aluminum foil and bake for 28-30 minutes
  • Uncover it and serve hot

  • Italian Blend cheese add a distinctive flavor to the dish, but you can substitute it with Mozzarella Cheese
  • You can make this recipe in advance. Cover it with foil and refrigerate it until ready to bake. Bake when you want to serve. You might need to bake it for an additional 10 minutes.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Black Chickpea Chaat

          Black Chickpeas Chaat or Chana Chaat is a popular roadside snack in India. It is, like other chaat dishes, spicy and tangy, or chatpata as we call it in India. This dish can also be made with white chickpeas or garbanzo beans, but I like it more with black chickpeas.

  • 4 cups black Chickpea soaked for 6-8 hours
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped Onion
  • 1 cup finely chopped Tomatoes
  • 1 boiled Potato
  • 2-3 finely chopped Green Chili 
  • 2 tsp Garlic paste
  • 2 tsp Black Pepper
  • 2 tsp Chaat Masala (Optional)
  • 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp Oil
  • 2 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • A pinch of Asafoetida
  • 1/4 finely chopped Cilantro
  • Cook the soaked black Chickpeas. I prefer to use pressure cooker to boil it.
  • If using a pressure cooker, cook for 4-5 whistles or tilt they are cooked.
  • Make sure they are not overcooked else it will become mushy.
  • In the meanwhile, dice the boiled potatoes and keep it aside.
  • Once the chickpeas are cooked, drain the water.
  • Now, heat some oil in a pan. Add Asafoetida and cumin seeds.
  • As soon as cumin seeds start to crackle, add the garlic paste and saute it for about a minute.
  • Then add the Chickpeas to it and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Now transfer the chickpeas to a big bowl.
  • Add the diced potatoes, chopped tomatoes, chopped onions and green chilies to it and mix it well.
  • Then add salt, pepper, chaat masala and lemon juice to the bowl. You can adjust it according to your taste.
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Beans and Corn Enchilada

           Mexican cuisine in US has lot of similarities to the Indian cuisine. They have some very similar flavors. So the first time I had Quesadillas and Enchiladas here, I loved them so much that I tried making them at home. They were so tasty and filling that it became our go-to dish during our student life.
          So, here is an quick and easy recipe for tasty Enchiladas. You can also add more vegetables to the stuffing like spinach, bell peppers etc as per your taste and availability. This is a basic Beans and Corn Enchilada recipe.

  • 2 Burrito sized Tortilla
  • 1 can Refried Beans
  • 1 small Onion
  • 4-5 pickled Jalapeno slices
  • 1/2 cup boiled Sweet Corn
  • 2-3 Olives
  • 1 cup red Enchilada Sauce
  • 1 cup Chunky Salsa
  • 1/4 cup Hot Sauce
  • 1 cup Mexican Blend Cheese
  • Heat some oil in a pan
  • Add the re-fried beans and mix it well
  • Let it simmer for 5-7 minutes
  • Meanwhile, finely chopped the onions, jalapenos and olives
  • Take a tortilla, I prefer spinach and tomato flavored tortillas rather than the plain flour tortilla. You can also use whole wheat tortilla
  • Spread a spoon of Enchilada sauce and a spoon of Hot sauce evenly on the tortilla.
  • Then spread a spoon of salsa on it
  • Now take 2 spoons of beans and keep it in the center of the tortilla
  • Add some onions, corn, jalapenos and olives over the beans.
  • Now sprinkle some garlic salt, black pepper and oregano leaves
  • Fold the tortilla as shown below.
  • Then add some more enchilada sauce and salsa on it.
  • Sprinkle some cheese on it 
  • Now heat for 3 minutes on high in Microwave
  • Enchilada is ready!!! Enjoy! 

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Okra(Bhindi) Masala

             Okra or Bhindi is a popular ingredient in many cuisines across the world including Indian. Okra curry is made in a variety of ways depending on the region you are in, ranging from simple to very difficult. Today, we will see the Gujarati style of making Okra Masala.

  • 1 lb Okra (Bhindi)
  • 1 cup raw Peanuts
  • 1 tbsp Red Chili powder
  • 2 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 2 tbsp Coriander seeds-Cumin seeds powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • Pinch of Asafoetida
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • Cilantro for garnish
  • Wash the Okra properly and dry them on paper towel
  • In the meanwhile, crush the peanuts into fine powder
  • Add the salt, turmeric powder, chili powder and coriander-cumin powder
  • Mix it properly and keep it aside
  • Now chop the Okra as shown below.
  • Just cut the Okra vertically in half, and only if they are too long cut them half horizontally
  • Now, heat the oil in a pan
  • Add the Asafoetida  and Cumin seeds to it
  • Once the Cumin seeds start to crackle, add the chopped Okra to it and mix well
  • Once they start to soften a little, add the peanut mixture to it and mix well

  • Let it cook for another 5 minutes or till the Okra are properly cooked. Make sure that they are soft on bite, but not mushy
  • Make sure to stir them intermittently .
  • Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve hot with your choice of Bread 

  • Don't cover the pan with lid while cooking Okra
  • Don't add water as well else it will be become sticky and slimy 
  • Before chopping Okra, make sure they are completely dry. Wet ones are very sticky while chopping
  • If the curry becomes too slimy, you can add any acidic ingredient like lemon juice or vinegar will help to reduce the sliminess

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Avocado Salad

           Since coming to California, I have grown very fond of the amazing Avocados available here. Guacamole is the most common dish that is prepared with Avocados, and of course, I love that very much.

          Yesterday, I had this craving for an Avocado dish, but wanted to make something other than Guacamole. I promptly thought of making a salad along with some with fresh veggies, that is healthy and delicious and perfect as a side dish for any Avocado lover.

  • 2 ripe Avocado
  • 1 chopped Tomato
  • 1 finely chopped Onions
  • 1 chopped Cucumbers
  • Finely chopped Cilantro
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tsp Black Pepper
  • 2 tsp Lime (or Lemon) Juice
  • Chop the Avocado into medium size chunks
  • Add the Avocado in a bowl
  • Now add the tomatoes, onions, cucumbers
  • Then add salt, pepper and lime juice and mix it well
  • Finally add the cilantro and mix it
  • Avocado Salad is ready to eat

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Lemon-Pepper Linguini Pasta

                   Me and my husband are big lovers of Italian food, especially Pasta. While we love having our Pasta with different types of sauces like the one we saw previously, today we decided on trying out pasta with sauteed vegetables and some exciting flavors. The lemon zest adds a nice citric and refreshing flavor to it, and the spice complements it nicely. So let's embark on this flavorful journey

  • 1 pkt Linguini Pasta
  • 1 cup sliced Onions
  • 1 cup sliced Color Peppers
  • 2-3 crushed Garlic cloves
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil/Butter
  • 1 tbsp Lemon Zest
  • 1 tbsp Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Red Pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 0.5 tsp Parsley leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • Cook the Linguini pasta as per the package instructions
  • Drain and keep it aside
  • Heat the olive oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds to it.
  • Once the cumin seeds start to crackle, add garlic to it and saute it for a minute
  • Now add the onions to it. Add some salt to it and saute it till it turns translucent
  • Then add peppers and saute it for 1-2 minutes.
  • Now add the black pepper, red pepper flakes, parsley leaves and lemon zest  and mix it well
  • Now stir in the cooked Linguini and cook it for 2 minutes or until well coated
  • Serve hot and enjoy

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Green Paratha

                    Green Paratha (Indian bread) gets it name from the deep green color and all the green ingredients it has. This paratha is very different from the other stuffed parathas. It is a great way to eat all the green leafy vegetables for everyone to enjoy, even those who don't like the greens. The mint gives it a refreshing flavor that you cannot miss.

  • 3 cups Wheat flour
  • 2 cups Spinach leaves
  • 1 cup Fenugreek leaves
  • 1 cup Cilantro 
  • 0.5 cup Mint leaves
  • 4 Garlic cloves
  • 3 tbsp Chili-Ginger Paste
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 2 tsp Cumin Powder
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil
  • Wash all the green leaves properly.
  • In a blender, mix all the green leaves and garlic and grind it to a smooth paste. If needed, add very little water. I prefer to do it without water
  • Sieve the flour
  • Add 2 tsp Oil, salt, chili-ginger paste, cumin powder, black pepper to the flour and mix it well

  • Now, add the puree slowly and knead it into a semi-soft dough
  • Add more flour, if the dough is too soft
  • Knead the dough properly.

  • Divide into smaller portions
  • Roll out each portion of the dough into a small round with the help of flour.
  • Place the Paratha on a hot tava (or skillet), cook for a minute or two and turn once.
  • After 1 minute, spread little oil on the Paratha , turn again and repeat on the other side.
  • When brown patches appear on both sides, the Paratha is ready.

  • Serve hot with any Cilantro Chutney or Tomato Ketchup or any dipping sauce of your choice.