Sunday, July 26, 2015

Chaat on a Stick

BM # 54   Week 4   Day 3

I love hosting parties and enjoy cooking for my guests. I like my menus to be elaborate and prefer to cook something new for these occasions. Well the quest for a new dish is something that all food bloggers have, right? On one of my recent evening tea parties , I made these Chaat BItes and they were appreciated by all. I served the Chaat on wooden skewers so it became easy for the guests to indulge in.You could use skewers or  toothpicks .

The bites on a stick look great and are very convenient for the guests too.

Chaat on a Stick.
2-3 potatoes
1 tomato
2 tsp Chaat masala
2 tbsp tamarind chutney
Salt to taste
Lemon juice

Wash and peel the potatoes.
Cut into cubes.
Alternatively you could use baby potatoes.
Sprinkle salt and mix well, keeping them aside for 5-7 minutes.We want the salt to seep in.
Deep fry these potatoes, till well cooked and crisp.
Remove on a kitchen napkin.
Chop the tomato into quarters, remove the pulp and dice them.
Put the potatoes and tomatoes into a bowl.
Add rest of the ingredients and mix well.
Check and adjust flavors according to taste .

To serve
Take a wooden skewer.
Thread in a tomato piece , two potato pieces or thread them the way you like.


I normally make this Chaat with a black spice powder called Kaala Chaat masala, and it's flavor is so good that I do not like to add chilly to it , how ever if you like your chaats spicy then prefer to use yellow chilly powder which tastes best in chaats. Red chilly powder could be used if yellow is not available.

The Kaala Chaat masala is a Delhi speciality and I am not sure if it is available else where, you could use MDH brand chunky Chaat Masala. In that case you might have to adjust the quantity of the spice. This spice is stronger than the black masala.

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Saturday, July 25, 2015

Coleslaw Bites

BM # 54  Week 4   Day 2

I am a hard core fan of bread and love it in any form. I love sandwiches and try to make them in different variations. These coleslaw sandwiches have been a great hit with my guests, and if you cut them further they become bites. They look colorful and taste delicious plus are healthy. Of course you could substitute white bread with brown. For a more dramatic affair. Use both the breads, brown and white.

Coleslaw bites
To make 1 sandwich
12 Pieces of Bites

2 slices jumbo bread

For Spread
1 cup curd
2 tbsp cheese, grated
2 tbsp cucumber, grated
2 tbsp cabbage, grated
1 tbsp carrot, grated
1 green chilly, pastes
1/4 tsp oregano
1/8 tsp chilly flakes
1 tsp coriander leaves
Salt to taste

To make hung curd
Take a muslin cloth, place it on a bowl, put the curd in this cloth.
Picking the corners, tie the muslin cloth lightly and hang it in a corner with a bowl underneath for collecting the drained water.
Leave it for 2 -3 hours.

To make spread
Apply salt to cabbage, cucumber and carrot.
Leave for 5 minutes, squeeze out the excess water.
Take a bowl , add the hung curd, prepared vegetables and rest of the ingredients.
Mix well.
This is our spread.

To make sandwich
Remove the crust from the bread.
Apply butter.
Apply the spread, lavishly.
Cover with another buttered slice.
Cut into bite sized pieces.
Serve with mint dip or ketchup.

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Friday, July 24, 2015

Olive and Basil Pinwheels

BM # 54   Week 4   Day 1

While hosting my parties I always prefer to make bite sized snacks. The concept of snacking has changed and people no more want to eat big, lare sized snacks. If making samosas, I no longer make the real Punjabi samosas, I like to make the mini version. Come to think of it I have always seen the Gujarati's serve small and bite sized portions. I used to laugh because I had always seen big portions of food and big sizes in North., I felt how can a person make such small tit bits ! Well I no longer laugh , but find people very wise when I see them serving bite sized snacks or small mini sized desserts. Yes for this week my theme is Bite Sized Appetizers.For today I have these pinwheels, which can be pre prepared and sliced just before serving. 

Pinwheels is a very light appetizer and I have always been fond of them. They are truly versatile. Check out some other variations that I have tried.

Olive and Basil Pinwheels

Olive and Basil butter
1 cup butter
2 tbsp finely chopped black olives
1 tbsp finely chopped piri piri
2 tbsp leaves from basil oil.
Mix everything very well and keep aside.
You could use fresh basil leaves if you do not have the oiled ones.

6 slices of jumbo bread with crust removed.

To make the pinwheels
Roll the bread slices with a rolling pin , till they are evenly flat.
Apply a layer of the prepared butter.
Place one buttered bread slice, overlapping the first slice, place the second slice and similarly the third one.
You have one long strip of bread.
Start rolling this strip. Roll tightly .
Wrap in a cling film and seal the ends by twisting on either side.
Make sure there is no air and the roll is tight.
Place it in the frig for 10-15 minutes.
Remove and cut into slices.

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Sunday, July 19, 2015

Samosa Chaat

BM # 54   Week 3  Day 3

This is one Indian savory pastry that I love. Even as a kid I loved these. I remember the staff boy getting these from a small sweet shop which was owned by a sardarji . He was very popular for samosas and gulab jamuns. Come to think of it , in Delhi we see too many of these small shops who sell samosas , gulab jamuns along with other sweets. My memory takes me back to my uncles house in Delhi in Karol bagh area where Shiv Lal samosas were so popular. Till date our cousin talk about it on wats app. I find these so versatile, give a slight twist and the whole concept changes.

For this week under deep fried food, here are my favorite samosas in a Chaat avatar. They are made with wheat flour, the stuffing is the same, but served with chilled curd , sprouts and sweet chutney with a little spice topping. The samosas should be piping hot while the curd and chutneys should be really really chilled. You will love them.
Since the theme asked for Deep Fried Love, I fried two samosas rest were baked.

Here is how I made these
Samosas, here I have substituted APF with wheat flour
Chilled whipped curd
Sweet tamarind chutney
Moong sprouts
Pomegranate pearls
Chaat masala
Red chilly powder
Place the hot samosa in a bowl.
Sprinkle some sprouts.
Drizzle the curd and chutneys.
Sprinkle the spices and pomegranate pearls.
Serve immediately.

Check out some of the samosa variations

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Saturday, July 18, 2015

Paalak Pakoda Chaat

BM # 54   Week 3   Day2

Born and brought up in Delhi, I have a true Delhite taste . I love the Gol gappas, the Dahi Wadas, chaats and all the street food available in this bustling city. If you have ever been to this city , you must have observed that the sweet shops have a Chaat counter outside their shops. These Chaat counters normally have Gol Gappas, Papdi Chaat, Dahi Wadas , Raj Kachori. A few of these also have Paalak ke patte ki chaat.

The Paalak or spinach leaves are dipped into a gram flour batter and fried into a lovely fritter and then chilled curd, sweet tamarind chutney are drizzled on this fritter. Chaat masala, peeli Mirch are then sprinkled. Trust me while I type this, my mouth is watering.

My theme for this week is Deep Fried Love and so I decided to post Spinach Pakodas which are the base of a chaat, just like papadi.

So let's get to the recipe, but before that we must make sure that we choose nice big clean fresh spinach leaves. We should remove the stalk and wash and gently wipe the leaves. Now our leaves are ready .

For the pakodas
10 - 12 spinach leaves
1/2 chick pea flour / besan 
Salt to taste
Oil for frying

Wash and wipe the leaves , make sure they are completely dry.
You could leave the leaves in a colander for a while and then wipe each leaf with a kitchen towel.
Make a smooth batter  of besan and water.
Add salt .
Dip these leaves into besan and deep fry to a nice crisp golden.

These fritters can be enjoyed just as they come out, steaming hot. You could sprinkle Chaat masala and enjoy as it is. But I love the Chaat made by those vendors in Delhi and on all my trips to Delhi I must make sure to eat this Chaat at least once.

These same pakodas are used for Chaat ,here is what you need

Whipped curd
Boiled potatoes, cut into small cubes
Boiled kabuli chana, zero size
Sweet tamarind chutney
Green Chutney
Chaat masala
Red / yellow chilly powder
Salt to taste

Getting the Chaat ready
Place two or three of the spinach pakodas in a dish.
Sprinkle the boiled cubed potatoes and channa.
Add the whipped chilled curd, lavishly.
Drizzle some sweet tamarind chutney.
Drizzle the green chutney.
Sprinkle the spices.
Serve immediately.

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Friday, July 17, 2015

Idli Chilly Fry

BM # 54   Week 3   Day 1

Well this dish is normally born if you have left over idlis..right? Yes and No!
I am personally very fond of idli chilly fry and specially the one they serve at Shiv Sagar in Mumbai. The chilly fry is quite spicy and idli can be easily taken for cottage cheese.The taste is amazing so I never order idli or Dosa there.At home whenever I make idlis, I quickly keep a few aside for my chilly fry.

The idlis have to be cut and batter fried, you just cannot compromise on this, at least I can't the batter fried idlis when mixed with the rest of. The ingredients and sauces fluffs up and absorbs the sauces making it really delicious. The plain simple comforting Idli is transformed into a nice deep fried fritter , and the final outcome is a mind blowing spicy dish!

For this week I have chosen to cook fried food and Idli Chilly Fry is my Day 1 entry.

Idli Chilly Fry
4 idlis
1/2 cup APF + 2 tsp cornflour
Salt to taste
Make a batter of the above ingredients.
Cut the idlis, lengthwise.
Dip into the batter and deep fry.
Keep aside.

For the chilly fry
3-4 onions
1 capsicum
1 tbsp garlic, chopped
1 tbsp green chilly, diognally cut
1 tsp ginger, Juillene
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp chilly sauce
1/2 tsp vinegar
Salt to taste
Heat oil.
Add garlic, onions and capsicum
Saute for a minute or two,
Add green chilly and ginger.
Saute for another two minutes,
Add the batter fried chilly and mix well.
Drizzle the sauces, vinegar and salt.
Mix well on full flame.
Sprinkle a few drops of water.
Remove from fire and serve piping hot.
Garnish with spring onion.

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Sunday, July 12, 2015

Melon and Papaya Sorbet

BM # 54   Week 1   Day 3

Melon and Papaya are the fruits which kids aren't really fond of . How about sneaking them into their favorite form.

Yes turn it into a sorbet and they will love it.
 Let me tell you how this sorbet came to my mind..well in summers papaya , melon and mangoes are always on the breakfast table, mango being everyone's favorite gets over immediately. I fuss a little over papaya and sometimes just put it away to eat later. So one day I put both melon and papaya in the frig to eat later and by after noon I was in no mood to eat so puréed and froze them and in the evening a delicious sorbet was ready.

This is my day 3 post under Kids Delight, fruit in any form.

Melon and Papaya Sorbet

1 cup musk melon
1 cup papaya
Rose syrup

Chop the melon and papaya into chunks.
Blend them to a fine puree.
Freeze this puree.
Just before serving remove it and blend for a few seconds.
A lovely sorbet will be ready.
Pour in a glass and drizzle some Rose syrup and serve.

This is just enough for one person, you could increase the quantity according to your family.

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Saturday, July 11, 2015

Tea Sangria

BM # 54   Week 2  Day 2

Since my son has got married I see a lot of iced tea being made. Ya my DIL is very fond of it and must have it everyday. In routine the house boy has become perfect at making it and every evening three nice jars are ready. I am not a tea person so not for me, but sometimes if my DIL insists I have a sip or two.

For this particular iced tea she made special ice with fruit juice and and then proceeded the way she does. We added apple slices and mint.This is my Day 2 post under Kids Delight.Fruits

The recipe is simple and gets done in a jiffy.

Tea Sangria
1 lt of water
1 tbsp loose tea
Sugar to taste
Juice of two lemons
Lots of ice
Fruit slices.

Put water to boil.
Add tea leaves, let boil.
Switch off the gas.
Add sugar let it dissolve,
Strain and discard the tea leaves.
Fill a pitcher and chill it.
Before serving add mint, lemon juice, ice cubes and fruit slices.

Notes: I made ice cubes from apple juice. You could use any other flavored juice or even fresh juice for ice cubes.
if not using fruit ice you could add some fruit juice and regular ice cubes.

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Friday, July 10, 2015

Coconut Punch

BM # 54   Week 2   Day 1

It was my daughter in laws birthday and we decided to go to Swati Snacks for lunch. This is a place which is very popular for traditional snacks , practically all traditional snacks are served here. It was on this visit we ordered a Coconut Punch. The punch was very very refreshing and soothing, all of us loved it.

This punch was so refreshing that it was instantly mind marked! I knew I would be asked to make this one,so when Valli announced the fruit based theme for Kids Delight, I immediately thought of it . Its very easy and gets done within minutes.

I made the punch with three coconuts and they were big ones, which yielded about 200 ml water each , so it served three 200 ml glasses. if the coconut water is sweet use less sugar, it has to be very mild and tastes best keeping it close to natural one.

The kevda has a very mild soothing aroma and adds a heavenly touch to the drink, how ever if it is not available you could try using Rose or Khus flavors in moderation.

Check for yourself.

3 fresh coconuts, with meat
2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp Kewda flavoring
1/2 tsp basil seeds

Soak the basil seeds in half a cup of water for 10 minutes, they will swell up.
Remove the water from coconuts.
Keep the coconut cream aside.
Chop half the coconut cream into tiny pieces.
Blend the other half of the cream,with sugar and coconut milk.
Add the chopped cream to the blended water
Add the soaked basil seeds and serve chilled.

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Sunday, July 5, 2015

Punjabi Chole - Ek masale wale / Just one spice

BM # 54   Week 3   Day 3

I am very fond of Chola or Channa as some call them. Chole Kulche, Chole Bhature, Chole Chaawal...anything is fine, with some fried green chilly and lemon slices, this meal tempts me immediately. Sadly we do not cook it very often as they do not suit my son. In spite of that I am forever finding a new variation to make these. On one of my searches I found this recipe by Sanjeev Kapoor.

The recipe is very simple where these Cholas are made with just one spice. Yes just one spice .Channa Masala! It was hard for me to believe that these would taste good with just that spice, but I gave it a try and trust me found the recipe unbelievably excellent. The gooseberry and the tea leaves add a wonderful colour to the Chole .

These cholas are my Day 3 post for Lentils three ways.

1 cup chickpeas
1 tbsp tea leaves
2-3 dried Indian gooseberry
6 tbsp oil
2 onions,chopped
4-6 green chillies, slit
2 potatoes, boiled, cubed
1 1/2 tsps Chana masala
1 cup tomato purée
Salt to taste

Soak the chickpeas overnight.
Drain and pressure cook them with four cups of water.
Tie a tbsp of tea leaves and gooseberry in a muslin cloth.
Add this bag and salt to the chickpeas and pressure cook for 6-8 whistles, or till the chickpeas are completely soft and cooked.
Drain the chickpeas , reserve the water.
Discard the tea bag.
Heat some oil and fry the cubes to a golden.Keep aside.
Add some more oil to the pan and saute onions and green chillies. Saute till onion is pink.
Add channa masala and saute for another few minutes.
Add the tomato purée and cook till dry.
Add the chickpeas and the reserved water from them.
Simmer and cook for 5-7 minutes.
Serve with fried potato cubes ,onions and green chilly.
These can be enjoyed with Bhaturas, Nan's, Kulchas and even rice.

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Saturday, July 4, 2015

Sindhi Aani Bassar / Fried Lentil Cakes in Thick Gravy

 BM # 54   Week 1   Day 2

Seyal Bhaaji's are very popular in Sindhi Cuisine , These are full of onions and that's what makes the gravy of the veggie. We have Seyal Bhindi, Seyal Meha patata, but the aani Bassar is one favorite of all. Here you make a dough with spiced Besan and make small tikkis, fry and add them to these onions. We have two versions of this dish, one with proper gravy and other Seyal one. So here is a Seyal Aani Bbassar for Day 2  Lentils 3 ways.

For Aani
2 cups  chick pea flour (Besan)
1 onion, finely chopped
¼ cup coriander finely chopped
2 green chilly finely chopped
2 tsp poppy seeds
¼ tsp red chilly pwd
4 tbsp oil
Salt to taste

Put the chick pea flour in a bowl.
Add all the ingredients.
Mix the flour with hands till resembles breadcrumbs.
Adding water ,bind to a semi soft dough.(this takes up little water so be careful)
Make small rounds and flatten like a tikki else roll them lengthwise.
Press sides to make them even.
Cut into pieces.
Deep fry.
These aanis have a very good shelf life,so you can make them and store for a few days.
Soak the required quantity in water.

The Gravy
8 large onions, chopped
1 tsp ginger paste
6 large tomatoes, finely chopped
2 green chillies
1 tsp coriander powder
1/8 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chilly powder
1/2 tsp Garam masala

Heat oil.
Add onions, ginger paste and green chillies.
Saute till translucent.
Drain the water from the deep fried aani.
Add these to the onions.
Add salt and turmeric powder.
Simmer the gas and place a lid on the pan .
Pour some water on the lid and let the onion cook on slow fire.
After the onion has become soft which shall take about 15-20 minutes add the tomatoes and the rest of spices.
Let the flame be slow for another 5 minutes.
The tomatoes will get mushy.
Now increase the flame and cook stirring very gently, so that the aani s do not break.
The water oozed from onions and tomatoes has to be be dried.
The end result would be a onion tomato gravy , a gravy which is very very thick .


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Friday, July 3, 2015

Hare Chane ki Chaat

BM # 54  Week 3  Day1

It's during winter we get these fresh green Channa or Garbanzo beans. These are a favorite with all of us and I love to cook with them. For the theme Lentils in three ways I have three different lentils and three different cuisines and three different courses. For today it is a Chaat with these fresh garbanzo beans.

This is a very popular Chaat and we see hawkers selling these in most states. I have seen hawkers in Delhi, here in Gujarat , I even saw some of these in a place like Haridwar. These hawkers normally use the dried beans which are soaked and then boiled. They have these ready . They have a small stove to cook these by adding onions, tomatoes etc. the chaat is nice and hot. The other version is where you have the boiled beans and these are mixed with accompaniments and served cold, just like a cold salad.

For today I have this as a cold salad.The other version is very interesting too, so look for it I shall post it very soon.

Hare chane ki Chaat
1 cup fresh green garbanzo beans.
1 onion
1 tomato
1/2 cucumber
1 green chilly
Coriander leaves
Chaat masala
Salt to taste
Lemon juice
Boil the beans with salt till soft. I used the pressure cooker and gave two whistles.
Drain the water and let cool.
Add finely chopped onions, tomatoes,cucumber, green chilly and coriander.
Add chaat masala and squeeze some lemon juice.
Mix well and serve .

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