Saturday, 28 July 2012

Sesame and Jaggery-A Sweet Stuffed Paratha(Indian Flat Bread))

English: Gurh, Jaggery
English: Gurh, Jaggery (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
This sweet paratha is crispy and has the goodness of sesame seeds and jaggery.It is also called Gul Poli in many parts of India.This is also a traditional recipe and is usually prepared during the festival of Makar Sankranti.
Ingredients :
For the Dough
Whole wheat flour-1 cup
All purpose flour-1/2 cup
Oil-2 teaspoons
Salt-1/2 teaspoon
Warm water-for kneading the dough
Ghee-1 teaspoon

For the Stuffing
Grated jaggery-1/2 cup
Sesame seeds-1/4 cup
Green cardamom-2
Poppy seeds-2 teaspoons
Gram flour-5 tablespoons
Milk-1or 2 teaspoons

-Take a big vessel and add all the ingredients for making the dough together except water and mix well
-Slowly add warm water and knead to make a nice soft dough.keep this dough covered in a cling foil for 15-20 minutes.
-Take another pan dry roast the sesame seeds,poppy seeds and gram flour separately and let it cool.
-Add the gardamoms and grind the sesame seeds and poppy seeds coarsely.
-Take a plate and put the grated jaggery,gram flour and sesame seeds and add 1 or teaspoons of milk and mix it properly and make round balls from this mixture.
-Divide the dough into 3-4 medium size balls and gently press and flatten each ball.
-Press the sides of the flattened ball and add a small ball of the jagger and sesame seeds mixture and cover it with the dough and gently roll with your hands.
-Take a roll pin and dust some wheat flour on the ball and make medium size parathas.
-Heat a flat pan and cook one paratha at a time and smear ghee when both sides are properly cooked.
-Serve the hot and sweet parathas with plain yogurt.

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Saturday, 21 July 2012

Sugarfree Almond Phirni(Rice Pudding)

This is a popular Indian dessert.It's made from ground rice paste.I have used sugar free powder to make this phirni.You can also substitute kewra essence with a generous pinch of saffron.
Long grain rice-3 table spoons
Milk-4 cups
Sugar free-1.5 teaspoon
Blanched pista and almonds-5-6
Kewra essence-1/2 teaspoon
Crushed Cardamons-2

-Soak the rice in water for 2-3 hours.
-Make a fine paste with the soaked rice.
-Heat a big pot and boil 4 cups of milk on slow flame.
-As the milk begins to boil,add the sugar.
-Add little cold milk or water to the rice paste and mix it well.
-Slowly add the rice paste to the boiling milk and keep stirring constantly.
-Now add the crushed cardamon and keep stirring till the rice is properly cooked.
-Add the sugar free powder and turn off the flame and add the kewra essence.
-Allow the phirni to cool and garnish it with blanched almonds and pista.
-Serve chilled.

Potatoes in Mustard Paste

Potatoes in mustard paste is a simple and delicious recipe which tastes best with steamed rice and Dalma.I have used fresh mustard paste to make this recipe.
Salt to taste
Turmeric powder-1/2 tespoon
Vegetable oil/Mustard oil-5-6 table spoons

For the Mustard Paste
Mustard seeds-2 teaspoons
Cumin seeds-1 teaspoon
Garlic cloves-5-6
Green chilli-1(Optional)

-Wash the potatoes and cut them into thin slices.You need not peel the potato skin.
-Make a smooth paste with the ingredients for mustard paste.
-Take a big container and add sliced potatoes,salt,turmeric powder and the mustard paste and mix well and keep aside for atleast 15-20 minutes.
-Heat 5-6 table spoons of oil in a pan and fry the potatoes in batch of 5-6.Do not over crowd the pan.
-Serve hot with plain steamed rice and the very healthy Dalma.

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Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Indian Dal-Dalma(Lentils with Vegetables)

Lentils are pack with protein and are very good for growing kids.This simple dal is inspired by the recipe Dalma from Odisha.It contains vegetables and is cooked in very little oil.Dalma tastes best when served hot with plain steamed rice.
Yellow Pigeon peas(Toor dal)-1/2 cup
Yellow Pumpkin-5- 6small cubes
Yam-3-4 small cubes
French beans-3-4
Raw banana-1
Salt to taste
Turmeric powder-1/2 teaspoon
For Tempering
Oil/Ghee-2 teaspoons
Mustard seeds-1/4 teaspoon
Cumin seeds-1/4 teaspoon
Dried Red Chilli-2
Carom seeds-a pinch
Aniseed-a pinch
For the Powder
Cumin seeds-4 table spoons
Dry Red chillies-4-5
How to make the powder
-Dry roast the dried red chillies and cumin seeds and let it cool
-Coarsely grind in a pestle to make powder.
How to Cook the Dalma
-Soak the toor dal in 2-3 cups of water for atleast 1 hour.
-Cut all the vegetables into small or medium size.
-Take a pressure cooker and add the washed toor dal and the cut vegetables.
-Add salt and turmeric powder and 5 cups of water.
-Let it cook for 3-4 whistles.Allow it to cool.
-Heat oil/ghee in a pan and add mustard chilli,cumin seeds,red chilli and allow it to splutter.
-Now add the cooked vegetables and dal and cook for another4 -3minutes .
-Turn off the flame and add the roasted and  powdered cumin seeds and red chilli.
-Serve hot with plain steamed rice.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Besan Ki Roti with Spinach and Fenugreek(Indian Flat Bread)

This roti is basically made from gram flour.You can also make it with whole wheat flour and even multigrain flour.I have used fresh spinach and fenugreek leaves.This roti goes well with plain yogurt and pickle with some healthy salads.You can also serve it with fresh coriander chutney.Pack in in your kids lunch box or serve it for breakfast or dinner.
Gram flour(besan)-1/2 cups
Whole wheat flour-1 cup
 Onion -1/2
Ginger-1 small piece
Green chiiles-1,finely chopped
Sesame seeds-2 teaspoons
Carom seeds(ajwain) -1/4 teaspoon
Red chilli powder-1/2 teaspoon
Spinach leaves-a handful, finely chopped
Fenugreek leaves-a handful, finely chopped
Salt-1.5 teaspoon
Yogurt-2 tablespoons
Oil/Ghee-2 tablespoons
Water-1/4 cups,to knead the dough

-Make a paste with onions and ginger.
-Take a big container and put all the above ingredients except oil and water and mix well.
-Add the ginger-onion paste and slowly add water and make a nice soft dough.
- Let the dough rest for 15-20 minutes.
-Take some whole wheat in a small bowl.
-Divide the dough into 3-4 small portions and make rounds and flatten each dough ball.
-Roll each flattened dough by dusting some whole wheat flour to make small round rotis.
-Heat a flat pan and put the rotis .Cook each roti by turning it on both sides.
-Make sure the rotis is cooked on both sides properly  before smearing oil or ghee.
-Smear a little oil or ghee and serve hot!
-Serve with green chutney or plain yogurt.
My Note-You can also add grated carrots to make it more healthy.
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Thursday, 12 July 2012

Multigrain Chapati from Home Made Whole grains Flour

 Multigrain food usually contains more than one grain.They may include whole grain ingredients like oats,cracked wheat,ragi(millet),soya flour or some other grains.
To make this very healthy chapati, i purchase the whole grains and make fresh flour from them at home.You can take small quantities of each of the whole grain and make a flour and store it in an air tight container for atleast a week.This flour is fresh as it is home-made and is much better than the multigrain flours available at the super markets.It also provides the essential benefits of a multigrain food as the grains in the food are all whole grains.I have also added sesame seeds and grated carrots to make it more nutritious.
Whenever you buy multigrain foods from the supermarkets,make sure the product contains the 'whole' grains.Check the food labels and buy multigrain products with whole grains only.

 Millet flour(Ragi)-1/4 cups
Oats flour-1/4 cups
Soya flour-1/4 cups
Whole wheat flour-1/2 cups
Grated carrot-1
Finely chopped onions-1/2
Finely chopped garlic-2 teaspoons
Finely chopped green chillies-1
Red chilli powder-1/4 teaspoon
Sesame seeds-4 teaspoons
water-to make dough
Salt -1 teaspoon
Oil/Ghee-2 teaspoons
-Take a pan and dry roast the oats for 4-5 minutes and crush it in blender to make a fine powder.
-Similarly,dry roast the millet and make a powder from it too.
-I have used soya nuggets to make the soya flour.You can also use soya flour available in the market.
-Take a big vessel and add all the ingredients and only 1 teaspoon oil and mix them well with your hands.
-Take another pan and warm 6 table spoons of water.
-Add the warm water to the flour mix slowly and gently knead to make a nice soft dough.
-Let the dough rest for 15 minutes.
-Divide the dough into 4-5 portions by making small balls and press the ball and make it flat.
-Dust whole wheat flour and roll to make  round chapatis.
-Heat a flat pan and cook the chapatis.
- Turn them to cook on both sides.
-You can add oil or ghee.
-Serve hot with plain yogurt or green dhania chutney.

 My Notes
You can also make nice crispy crackers from this dough.Add little water to the flour mix and knead a tight and dry dough for making crackers.Roll the dough by dusting flour using a roll pin and cut it into thin strips using a knife.You can cook it on a flat pan or even bake it.

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Nutritious Vegetable-Pulses Curry

This recipe contains some of the important rich in vitamin A and other minerals and some protein rich pulses.You can serve it with rice or chapati.It also makes an excellent lunch box recipe.
Chickpeas-3 teaspoons(soaked and boiled)
Horse gram-3 tablespoons(soaked and boiled)
Bengal gram-2 tablespoons(soaked and boiled)
Eggplant-1 medium
Potato-1 medium
Pumpkin(yellow) -6-7 pieces,diced
Tomatoes-1 big,diced
 For the Paste
Garlic-5-6 cloves
Ginger-small piece
For Tempering
Cumin seeds-2 teaspoon
Mustard seeds-1/4 teaspoon
Dried red chillies-2
Fenugreek seeds-a pinch
Turmeric-1/2 teaspoon
Bay Leaves-2
Salt to taste
Vegetable oil-3 teaspoons
 -Soak the pulses over night or atleast for 8-10 hours in water.
-Dry roast 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds and 1 dry red chilli and grind it coarsely using a pestle.
-Make a paste with ginger,garlic and onions.
-Chop the vegetables into medium or small pieces.
-In a pressure cooker add all the vegetables and pulses except tomatoes and add 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric,salt and 2 bay leaves and pressure cook till 2 whistles.
-Drain the water from the vegetables and allow it to cool.
-Heat oil in a pan and add the spices for tempering.
-When the spices begin to splutter add the onion-ginger-garlic paste and saute for 2-3 minutes.
-Now add the diced tomatoes and cook for another 4-5 minutes.
-Add salt,turmeric,and the boiled  pulses and vegetables and mix well.
-Cook for 2-3 minutes and sprinkle the roasted red chilli-cumin powder on top.

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Friday, 6 July 2012

Smoked Eggplant(Baingan ka Bharta)

English: Tam makhuea (Thai script: ตำมะเขือ): ...
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The smoky flavor of the roasted eggplant seasoned with green chillies and onions gives a distinct flavor and taste to this dish.There are several ways to make this healthy and tasty bharta but I usually make it in two diffenent ways.In one recipe I simply add the onions,chillies and add mustard oil and mash it.This is a quick way to make the bharta.In the other recipe i cook the roasted eggplant along with the onions and chilles.Both the dishes can be had with plain chapati.
Quick Eggplant Bharta
Eggplants(Big size)-2
Finely chopped onions-1/2
Finely chopped green chillies-2(you can add more or less chillies as per your taste)
Ginger-1/4 teaspoon,finely chopped
Mustard oil/Ghee/Olive oil-2 teaspoons
Salt to taste
How to Roast the Eggplant
-Wash the eggplant properly and prick it at several places using a fork.
-Slit the eggplant but don't cut it into two halves.
-Put the eggplant on the gas flame and cook till it's skin is completely charred.
-Turn the flame off and let the eggplant cool completely.

How to make the Quick Bharta
-Take the charred skin of the eggplant out completely and wash it under running water once.
-Take a container and put the eggplant and add salt and mash it properly.
-Now add all the above ingredients including ghee/mustard oil and mash again.
-Baingan Bharta goes well with chapatis.

Masala Eggplant Bharta
Eggplants(Big size)-2
Finely chopped onions-1/2
Diced tomatoes-1/2
Finely chopped green chillies-2(you can add more or less chillies as per your taste)
Ginger-1/4 teaspoon,finely chopped
Cumin seeds- 1/4 teaspoon
Turmeric powder-a pinch
Finely chopped fresh coriander leaves-3-4 teaspoons

Vegatableoil/Olive oil/Ghee-2 teaspoons
Salt to taste
-Follow the above steps to roast the eggplants.
-Heat a pan and add the cumin seeds.Let it splutter.
-Add the chopped green chilies,turmeric powder and onions and saute till the onions become translucent.
-Now add the diced tomatoes and cook for 2- minutes.
-Put the mashed eggplant and mix well and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
-Turn the flame off and garnish with fresh coriander leaves.

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Thursday, 5 July 2012

Poha Mixture(Flattened Rice Flakes)

Poha mixture is yet another easy to make recipe.It is made by roasting the flattened rice flakes.You can store the mixture in an air tight container for at least a week.It's tasty and healthy too.This is a great tea-time snacks and kids will love it.
Flattened rice flakes(Thin variety)-2 cups
Roasted Peanuts-A handful
Roasted chana dal-3-4 teaspoons
Cashew nuts-7-8 fried
Boondi-4-5 teaspoons
Sev bhujia-1 small packet
Green chillies-2,finely chopped
Curry leaves-4-5
Salt to taste
Oil-2 teaspoons

-Add a teaspoon of oil in a pan and roast the poha on medium flame by stirring ocassionally.
-Take the roasted poha out on a plate.
-In the same pan now add 1 teaspoon of oil and curry leaves and green chillies.
-Fry the chillies and the curry leaves till they turn crispy.
-Now add the fried cashew nuts and the roasted chana dal.
-Add the roasted poha back to the pan and turn the flame off.
-Add the boondi,sev bhujia and mix well with a spoon.
-Store in an air tight container.

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Quick Poha(Flattened Rice Flakes) for Breakfast

Poha, a snack made of flattened rice.
Poha, a snack made of flattened rice. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Poha or flattened rice flakes is an easily digestible form of raw rice.There are several recipes made from poha.It is a quick-to-make and very nutritious food.
Poha with Onions and Potatoes
Poha-thin/thick variety 2 cups
Onion-1 medium size
Potato-1 medium size
Ginger-1 small piece
Green chillies-2
Turmeric powder-1/4 teaspoon
Roasted peanuts-a hand
Mustard seeds-1/4 teaspoon
Lime juice-3 teaspoon
Curry leaves-5-6
Salt to taste
Coriander leaves-for garnishing
Vegetable Oil- 3 tablespoons
-Wash the poha and drain the water using a strainer.Let it soak some water for 5-6 minutes.
-Cut the onions and potatoes into small pieces.
-Make a paste with ginger and chillies.
-Take the skin out of the peanuts by rubbing them with both hands and blowing off the skin.
-Heat and pan and add 3 table spoons of oil to it.
-Add the curry leaves and mustard seeds and let it splutter.
-Now put the cut potatoes and turmeric powder and cook for 3-4 minutes.
-Add the chopped onions and a pinch of salt and cook it along the potatoes.
-Put the roasted peanuts and the ginger and green chilli paste.
-Take a handful of soaked poha and add to the pan.
-Add salt according to your taste and mix well.
-Turn the flame off and add lime juice and mix well.
-Now slowly add the rest of the poha,taking a handful at a time.
-Serve hot with green chutney.
-Garnish coriander leaves on top.

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Monday, 2 July 2012

Mashed Potato Indian Style(Aloo ka Bharta)

Mashed potatoes or aloo ka bharta is a delicious comfort food recipe.This recipe can be made with mustard oil/olive oil/vegetable oil or ghee(clarified butter). All you need is some boiled potatoes and some chopped onions and a few spices to enhance the flavor.This quick to make recipe can be made in various ways and the basic ingredients more or less remain the same.

Cheesy Mashed Potato(Bharta)
Potatoes boiled-3 medium size
Processed cheese-2 cubes,grated
Garlic cloves-4-5,finely chopped
White pepper podwer-a pinch
Butter-1.5 teaspoon ,melted
 Salt to taste
-Peel the boiled potatoes and mash them adding 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
-Heat the pan and add 1.5 teaspoons of melted butter.
-Now add the garlic and quicly saute fora few seconds and immediately add the mashed potato.
-Mix it well and add grated cheese on top and a pinch of white pepper.

Quick Mashed Potato(Bharta)
Potatoes boiled-3 medium size
Finely chopped onions-1/2
Finely chopped green chilli-1
Mustard oil/Melted ghee-1/2 teaspoon
Salte to taste

-Peel the boiled potatoes.
-Take a container and add the potatoes and add salt and all the above ingredients.
-Wash your hands and mash the potatoes along with the ingredients.

Simple Mashed Potato(Bharta)
Potatoes boiled-3 medium size
Finely chopped onions-1/2
Finely chopped green chilli-1
Ginger,finely chopped-1/4 chopped
Fresh coriander leaves,finely chopped-1/4 teaspoon
Cumin seeds-1/4 teaspoon
Olive oil/Vegetable oil-1 teaspoon
Salte to taste

-Peel the boiled potatoes and mash them adding 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
-Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a pan and add the cumin seeds and let it splutter.
-Add chopped green chillies and ginger.
-Now add the chopped onions and saute for 2-3 minutes.You need not cook the onions till golden brown.
-Now add the mashed potato to the pan and mix all the ingredients stirring it constantly.
-Garnish fresh coriander leaves.

South Indian Style Mashed Potato(Bharta)
Potatoes boiled-3 medium size
Finely chopped onions-1/2
Finely chopped green chilli-1
Green chillies,slitted-2
Curry leaves-5-6
Mustard seeds-1/2 teaspoon
Roasted peanuts-1.5 teaspoon crushed
Asafetida- a pinch.
Vegetable oil/sesame oil-1 teaspoon
Salt to taste

-Peel the boiled potatoes and mash them adding 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
-Heat the pan and add 1 teaspoon oil to it.
-Add the curry leaves,mustard seeds,slitted green chillies,and asafetida and  let it splutter.
-Add the chopped onions and the mashed potato now.
-Mix well stirring well occasionally.
-Add the roughly crushed roasted peanuts on top.

Quick Tips
  • Boil the potatoes the night before and cool them and keep in the refrigerator.This will help you save time.
  • The bharta can be used as a stuffing for dosas,wraps and even sandwich.
  • The bharta tastes best with khichdi,plain rice or chapati.
Quick Mashed Potato(Bharta)
Potatoes boiled-3 medium size
Finely chopped onions-1/2
Finely chopped green chilli-1
Mustard oil/Melted ghee-1/2 teaspoon
Salte to taste

-Peel the boiled potatoes.
-Take a container and add the potatoes and add salt and all the above ingredients.
-Wash your hands and mash the potatoes along with the ingredients.
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