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Saturday 24 November 2007

Sweet Bread Pakodas

India is a country wherein guests are considered as a representative of God. When any person visits one's house it is the host's responsibility to treat his guests with due respect. This hospitality is seen throughout India. Most of the visits by friends and relatives are unexpected, hence sometimes it becomes difficult for any Indian wife to serve their guests at such a short notice. I am giving you the recipe of bread pakodas which does not call for a lot of ingredients nor time. It is very easy to make.

Ingredients

  1. 4 slices of bread each cut into 4 squares
  2. 1/2 cup cake flour or maida or all purpose flour
  3. 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  4. 1 tblsp sugar
  5. Water
  6. Oil for frying
  7. salt

Method:

  • Mix the cake flour, cumin seeds, sugar and salt.
  • Add water and make it into a thick batter
  • Heat oil
  • When the oil is hot, dip the bread piece into the batter and fry them.
  • Serve it with a cup of tea or coffee and a great smile.

Vegetable Biriyani

Ingredients:

  1. 2 cups Biriyani Rice
  2. 2 cups vegetables like peas,carrots, beans, tomato cut into small pieces
  3. 100 gms butter or ghee
  4. 4 green cardamoms
  5. 7 cloves
  6. 4 pieces of cinnamon 1 inch long
  7. 1 onion thinly sliced
  8. 1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  9. 1 1/2 tsp sliced ginger
  10. Salt to taste
  11. 1 tsp lemon juice
  12. 4 cups hot water

Method:

  • In a heavy bottomed vessel or a non stick vessel heat the butter and let it melt
  • Put in the cardamoms, cloves , cinnamon and cumin seeds and heat for a minute
  • Now put in sliced onions and ginger and let it slightly brown on low fire.
  • Add the washed rice and fry the rice slowly until all the water has evaporated
  • Now add the vegetables and fry for some more time
  • Now add the hot water and lemon juice
  • Cover the mixture and let it cook on lowest fire for 10 minutes or until the water has been absorbed by the rice.
  • Serve it with yogurt salad and pickles.

Friday 23 November 2007

Mince and Peas (Kheema Muttar)

Ingredients:

  1. 1/2 kg minced meat
  2. 250 gms fresh or frozen peas
  3. 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  4. 1 tsp. chilli powder
  5. 4 green chillies
  6. 1 inch ginger finely sliced
  7. 1 small onion finely cut
  8. 1 tsp. coriander powder
  9. 1 tsp. garam masala
  10. A handful of dhaniya leaves (coriander)
  11. 1 cup plain yogurt
  12. salt to taste
  13. 4 tblsp. oil

Method:

  • Heat oil, fry the onions until lightly brown
  • Now add the green chillies, ginger, mince and yogurt.
  • Cover and let it cook until all water evaporates. Cook it on a medium fire.
  • Add the peas, chilli powder, turmeric powder and coriander powder and let it cook for 3 minutes
  • Add 3/4 cup water, cover and cook until all water has evaporated.
  • Garnish with coriander leaves
  • Serve it with rotis or naan.

Easy Naan

Naan is a type of flat bread and almost resembles a pitta. It is usually eaten in Northern India as wheat grows in abundance in this region. Naan is usually made out of white flour. It is usually baked in a clay oven called the tandoor. But as we do not have a tandoor at home, one can make it on a hot griddle or tava at home. Naan can be served with any curry.

Ingredients:

  1. 1 kg cake flour or white bread flour
  2. 8 teaspoon sugar
  3. 1 cup milk
  4. 5 gms yeast
  5. 1 egg
  6. 1 cup plain yogurt
  7. salt to taste

Method:

  • Mix all the ingredients into a pliable dough.
  • Cover it with a damp cloth and keep it aside for four hours to rise.
  • Make small balls and roll it out (not too thin) into the shape of a triangle
  • Heat the griddle and apply a little butter
  • Put the rolled out naan onto the griddle and fry on both sides.

Thursday 22 November 2007

Chocolate Cake

Ingredients:

  1. 400 gms Cake Flour
  2. 1 tsp. Vanilla Essence
  3. 60 gms cocoa powder
  4. 340 gms butter
  5. 8 eggs
  6. 460 gms castor sugar
  7. 1 tsp baking powder
  8. 1/2 cup coke

Method:

  • Sieve the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder together and keep it aside.
  • Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites.
  • Heat the butter a little, add coke to it and remove from fire
  • Add sugar to the melted butter and stir.
  • Add the egg yolks and vanilla essence and beat it until the mixture is light and creamy
  • Go on adding the flour mixture to the creamed butter, a spoon at a time and mix well until all flour is used up.
  • Beat the egg whites until light and fluffy.
  • Add this to the cake mixture and mix until everything is mixed up thoroughly.
  • Pour the cake mixture into a greased baking tin and bake at 180 degrees for 30 minutes or until the cake is baked and does not come out sticky from the middle. You can test this with the help of a toothpick or any thin rod. If the toothpick comes out clean then the cake has baked completely.

Wednesday 21 November 2007

Cucumber Raita

Raita is a yogurt dish served with rice or as a dip. It has a cooling effect when eaten with other spicy foods. It can be made in several ways. I am giving you one of the simplest ones which everyone would like to try. I made this raita for the international food festival held in the Church and many people came and asked me for the recipe so thought of including it here.

Ingredients:

  1. 1 kg plain yogurt
  2. 1 medium sized cucumber
  3. 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  4. 1 tsp. paprika
  5. salt to taste

Method:

  • Remove the skin of cucumber and grate it.
  • Roast the cumin seeds lightly and powder it.
  • Add the grated cucumber, salt, cumin powder and salt to the yogurt and mix.
  • Sprinkle the paprika powder on top and refrigerate.

Stuffed Green Peppers

Ingredients:

  1. 5 medium sized fresh green, yellow or red peppers
  2. 3 boiled potatoes
  3. 1 medium onion finely chopped
  4. 1 tblsp lemon juice
  5. 1 1/2 green chillies
  6. Salt to taste
  7. A little sunflower oil

Method:

  • Mash the boiled potatoes
  • Mix the chopped onions, lemon juice, chillies and salt with the mash and keep it aside.
  • Cut the stalk part of the peppers and remove the seeds
  • Apply salt inside and fill it with the potato mixture.
  • Brush oil all over the peppers and bake.

Lamb Stew

This curry can be made with lamb as well as chicken. Serve it hot with bread, appams, rotis or rice.

Ingredients:

  1. 1 kg Lamb
  2. 1 onion sliced thinly
  3. 2 inch ginger cut into strips
  4. 5 garlic cloves
  5. 2 potatoes diced
  6. 5 green chillies slit from the middle
  7. 1 tblsp white spirit vinegar
  8. 1 tin coconut cream
  9. 1/2 tblsp. cake flour
  10. 2 1 inch long cinnamon sticks (Two one inch long)
  11. 10 cloves
  12. 5 green cardamoms
  13. 15 peppercorns crushed coarsely
  14. Few Curry leaves (optional)
  15. 1/4 cup sunflower oil
  16. Salt to taste
  17. 3 cups water

Method:

  • Heat oil and fry the cinnamon, cloves and cardamom lightly.
  • Add the onion, ginger, green chillies, curry leaves and garlic and saute. Keep them aside
  • In another heavy bottomed pan add 2 tsp oil and saute the flour. When it is fried add the meat and saute it for 2 more minutes.
  • Add vinegar, salt and water.
  • When the meat is half cooked add the potatoes and sauted onion and spice mix and cook it covered until the meat is cooked through and the water has reduced.
  • Add the coconut cream and bring to boil.
  • Add the crushed pepper corns and serve hot.

Tuesday 20 November 2007

Yogurt Salad

Ingredients:

  1. 1/2 litre plain yogurt
  2. 1 tomato sliced into small
  3. 1 onion sliced into small
  4. 2 green chillies cut into small pieces
  5. salt as per taste

Method:

  • Combine everything together
  • Add a little water if needed and refrigerate.

Easy Chicken Biriyani

This is a very easy method for cooking chicken biriyani. It can be cooked in a very short time and does not need any curry with it except a yogurt salad.

Ingredients:

  1. 1 kg Chicken cut into pieces
  2. 3 cups basmati rice
  3. 5 green chillies
  4. 1 inch Ginger
  5. 2 medium onions
  6. 2 tomatoes
  7. 5 cloves of garlic
  8. 1/2 bunch of coriander leaves
  9. Few mint leaves
  10. 2 tablespoons coriander powder
  11. 1 tablespoon chilli powder
  12. 1 tsp cumin powder
  13. 1 tsp turmeric powder
  14. 1 tblsp garam masala or chicken masala (mainly a combination of powdered cinnamon, cardamoms, cloves, curry leaves, fennel seeds)http://www.pachakam.com/glossary.asp
  15. 2 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)
  16. 5 cups of hot water
  17. 1 tbsp lime juice
  18. Salt as per taste

Method:

  • Grind all the items from 3 to 14 in a grinder into a paste
  • Take a pressure cooker and heat the ghee in it. If you do not have ghee add 100 gms butter and let it melt.
  • Add the ground paste and fry it until the ghee starts bubbling through the masala. Now put the chicken and a little salt in it and mix with the paste. Close the lid and let it pressure cook for 8 minutes.
  • Open the cooker only after the pressure is gone from inside the cooker.
  • Add the washed rice, lime juice, salt and hotwater to the cooked chicken and mix.
  • Close the lid again and let it cook for another 6 minutes or until the cooker is about to give out a whistle.
  • Off the stove and let the food remain in the pressure cooker until all the pressure is gone from inside the cooker. If you are using a electric stove top, move the cooker to a cooler stove top.
  • You can garnish the biriyani with fried onion rings or fried nuts.

Note: Never open a pressure cooker when there is pressure inside, it can lead to a terrible accident.