Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Melon Smoothie



Smoothies make great in-between meal snacks. As they are generally fruit based they have the goodness of fruits and are filling too.



Ingredients

300 grams cubed deseeded watermelon,
300 grams cubed musk melon,
2 cups low fat yoghurt,
Sugar/honey as required (optional)

Method

Simply blend all the ingredients together and pour into tall glasses. This will make 2 large glasses.

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Kolhapuri Missal Pav



Missal Pav is one of my favourite Maharashtrian snacks as is vada pav, thalipeeth, sabudana wada, sabudana khichdi...ok ok I love Maharashtrian snacks :-).

I have had Missal Pav many times at restaurants and made it myself too, but I have never had nor made Kolhapuri Missal Pav. The difference I understand is the inclusion of kat or a spicy broth along with the entire dish. I had heard hubby talking about this, so this time I decided to do some research before making Missal Pav and the recipe I followed is an amalgamation of two recipes I found on the blogosphere. What I found however was that the recipes were very long winded and a bit complicated, I have tried to keep it as straightforward as possible.



Missal when made with sprouted matki or moth beans has a distinct taste and is the most preferred sprouts for Missal. I have however used mixed sprouts this time.

Ingredients

Spice Mixture

½ tsp oil,
6 cloves,
8-10 peppercorns,
1 inch of cinnamon,
1 tbsp cumin seeds,
½ tsp sesame seeds,
1 tbsp coriander seeds,
¼ tsp fennel seeds,
3-4 garlic cloves,
1 inch piece of ginger,
1 bay leaf

For the Kat or Spicy Broth

 2 tomatoes,
1 small onion,
4 Kashmiri chillies,
A small piece of tamarind or 3-4 kokums,
2 tbsp well roasted dry coconut,
3 tbsps oil,
2 tbsp spice mixture,
½ tsp garam masala powder,
1 tsp spicy chilli powder,
½ tsp powdered turmeric,
1 tsp jaggery,
Salt to taste

For the Sprouts

4 cups of sprouted matki or moth beans (you can use any sprouts too),
2 tsps oil,
1 tsp mustard seeds,
1 tsp cumin seeds,
A pinch of asafoetida,
7-8 curry leaves,
½ tsp powdered turmeric,
Salt to taste,
1 tsp red chilli powder

For Assembling

1 big chopped onion,
2-3 tbsp chopped coriander leaves,
Lemon wedges,
Spicy farsan/namkeen,
Spicy peanuts

To Serve

Pav or Soft Non-sweet Buns

Method

To Make the Spice Mixture

Heat the oil and add the sliced ginger and garlic and fry on a low heat till brown in colour. Remove and keep aside. In the remaining oil add all the other ingredients and fry till they all turn light brown and the cloves swell up. Cool and powder all these fried ingredients to a powder.

As this mixture contains some wet ingredients like the ginger and garlic, you will not be able to make it into a very fine powder and that is ok.

To Make the Kat or Spicy Broth

Grind the tomatoes, onion, red chillies, tamarind/kokum and the roasted dry coconut into a fine paste.

Heat the oil and add this paste and fry till the oil separates. Now add the spice mixture, garam masala powder, chilli powder, turmeric, jaggery, salt and 3 cups of water.

Boil this for 3-4 minutes. Keep aside

To Make the Sprouts Mixture

Cook the sprouts with salt and enough water till almost done.

Heat the oil and add the mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Once they stop popping add the asafoetida, curry leaves, turmeric powder and chilli powder. After a minute add the salt and cooked sprouts. Saute for a minute.

Next add about 2 cups of water and let it come to a boil. Lower heat, cover with a lid and cook for another 5 minutes. Turn off the heat.

To Serve

Pour a ladle full of sprouts mixture into a serving dish. Top with the onions, coriander leaves, spicy farsan and spicy peanuts.

Serve this with a small serving of kat or spicy broth and pav.

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Kid Friendly Rice Pakoda



We made this simple rice pakoda the other day and it struck me that it is extremely kid-friendly. I have often seen kids fishing out pieces of onion and coriander leaves from pakodas or just refusing to have them as it is too spicy for their palates.



This pakodas use none of these ingredients and are extremely simple. You can serve it with a spicy chutney for adults.

Ingredients

1 cup rice flour,
1 egg,
Milk as required,
Salt to taste,
Oil for deep frying

Method

Mix together all the ingredients to form a thick batter. It should be a thick batter almost like a sticky dough and not have a pouring consistency.

Heat oil and drop spoonfuls of the mixture and fry on a medium heat till golden brown.

Serve this with tomato ketchup for kids and a spicy chutney for adults.

Friday, 26 July 2013

Sheermaal - an Awadhi Bread



Sheermaal is an Awadhi bread. It is pretty rich and generally made for weddings or special occasions. Sheermaal is generally not made at home. I was introduced to this bread after marriage, I guess the first time I had it was at my own wedding. It is a staple at all Muslim weddings in Eastern UP.

I don’t quite like to have it with meals as it is sweet and rich, I don’t like sweet breads with gravies. I prefer to have them just like this, that is how I had it when I made it myself.



The other day I just asked my husband what he would want to have for dinner and he said ‘Sheermaal and Bhuna Gosht’ knowing fully well that I couldn’t organize it for that day’s dinner at least. But then it got me yearning to fulfil his wish.

A couple of days later I started surfing the net for an authentic sheermaal recipe. We didn’t really find any recipe which we found satisfying (I asked hubby to do this research actually as he is more knowledgeable about sheermaal than me). Then finally I followed the recipe my husband regaled from his memories of seeing khansamas preparing sheermaals during weddings. It turned out quite good as far as the taste was concerned but appearance wise I still have a long way to go.

Ingredients

4 cups refined flour,
¾ cup ghee,
1 tbsp yeast,
1 tsp sugar,
2 tbsp powdered sugar,
1 cup whole milk,
Salt to taste,
1 beaten egg,
100 grams khoya,
1 tbsp sesame seeds
¼ cup milk,
A pinch of orange colour,
Some extra ghee

Method

Add the yeast and 1 tsp sugar to the luke-warm milk. Leave it aside to froth.

Heat a pan and add the khoya and sauté it till it turns light brown in colour.

Mix the refined flour, powdered sugar and salt well. Next add the roasted khoya and mix well. Then add the ghee, yeast mixture (after it has frothed) and beaten egg. Knead it into a soft dough, do not add any water.

Place it in a container with a tight fitting lid or cover it with cling wrap. Leave it aside to double in size. The time required for this step will really depend on the quality of your yeast.

Once it doubles in size, knead out the air and divide it into 7-8 balls.

Add the orange colour to the ¼ cup of milk.

Preheat the oven to 200oC for ten minutes.

Roll each ball into a 4-5 inches disc on a floured surface. Spread about a tsp of the coloured milk over the disc and sprinkle some sesame seeds. Gently press the sesame seeds into the dough.

Place it on a baking tray and bake for 8-10 minutes in the preheated oven at 200oC and then flip it over and bake for another 2 minutes.

Once it is out of the oven, dab some ghee over it.

You can serve it as an accompaniment to tea or even with any chicken or mutton dish.

Peas Peanut Potato Masala



Peanuts are mostly used in namkeens, poha or had just like that, today I am posting a recipe where it is used in a sabzi. Of course it would be best to use fresh tender peanuts, but they are not available throughout the year, so I have used normal peanuts.



Ingredients

1 cup peanuts,
½ cup boiled green peas,
1 large potato,
1 big onion,
2 slit green chillies,
2 bay leaves,
Juice of a lemon,
Oil as required,
Salt to taste,
Coriander leaves,
A pinch of garam masala powder

To be Ground into a Fine Paste

2 tbsp fresh coconut,
2 tsp coriander powder,
1 tsp cumin,
2 tsp poppy seeds,
½ tsp red chilli powder,
¼ tsp turmeric powder,
½ inch piece of ginger,
3 garlic cloves,
1 tbsp coriander leaves

Method
Soak the peanuts for at least 2 hours and cook them in salted water.

Peel and chop the potatoes. Chop the onions and coriander leaves too finely.

Heat oil and add the chopped potato, fry till they turn golden brown. Keep aside.

In the same oil add the bay leaves and the slit green chillies. After a minute add the chopped onions and fry till they turn light brown in colour. Now add the prepared paste and fry well till oil separates.

Fold in the peas, peanuts, fried potato, some coriander leaves and salt. Mix and cook for a few minutes till the gravy is well blended.

Turn off the heat and mix in the lemon juice and garam masala. Serve garnished with coriander leaves.

Goes well with rotis.