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Cumin-Coriander powder

Appetizers/ Entertaining/ Snacks/ Winter Special

Sweet Potato & Beetroot Kebabs

 

This recipe is inspired from Sweet Potato and Beetroot balls from Archana’s Kitchen.  A quick, healthy, nutritious snack that looks beautiful and taste wonderful. I just described a kids-friendly recipe, didn’t I? I will be making these for halloween party coming up soon.

Sweet Potato & Beetroot Kebabs

It tastes great with tangy tamarind chutney or hot-n-sour sauce or you can also try with salad with lots of greens!

Sweet Potato & Beetroot Kebabs

Sweet Potato & Beetroot Kebabs

A delicious healthy kids-friendly snack 🙂

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. In a small pan, heat some oil and add chopped onions. Fry them until translucent.
  2. Add garlic paste, green chilies and let them fry for a minute.
  3. Add grated beetroot and let it cook for 5 minutes.
  4. Add cumin-coriander powder, turmeric powder, chaat masala and some salt. Mix well.
  5. Add mashed sweet potatoes and mix well.
  6. Heat Paniyaram Pan and add a few drops of oil in each pocket.
  7. Make small balls and cook them from both sides in the pan. It takes about 10 minutes.
  8. Serve hot with chutney.

Everyday Cooking/ Maharashtrian/ Spring - Summer Special/ Subji / Curry/ Superfoods

कारल्याची भाजी / Karlyachi Bhaji / Bitter Gourd Stir Fry in Maharashtrian Style

5 different tastes in one bite! It's a culinary master piece!

I have always told people who asked me about my favorite vegetables that I love Karlyachi Bhaji and especially the way my mom makes it. The surprise on their face made me feel proud for earning brownie points for being a good kid who eats all vegetables, including bitter gourd.

Any preparation of bitter gourd will have a pronounced bitter taste and it should, it’s not easy to mask bitter taste but it plays well with well chosen ingredients. This particular preparation which uses tangy tamarind, nutty peanuts, creamy coconut, sweet jaggery and spicy Goda Masala is a classical example of Marathi cuisine from Konkan region.

karlyachi bhaji

I was very happy with my attempt to mimic  mom’s magical taste. The best reward was that my husband really enjoyed it, which was quite a shock for me!karela with Goda masala

Karlyachi Bhaji

Karlyachi Bhaji

5 tastes in one byte! It's a culinary master piece!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. If you are using ready made tamarind paste, skip this step. Else, in a small bowl add 1 spoonful of tamarind and some water, microwave it for 10 seconds and let it sit aside.
  2. Wash bitter melons and cut them length wise, if you see any bigger seeds remove them with a spoon or inner side of a peeler. Now chop them into smaller equal sized pieces.
  3. Add these chopped pieces to a bowl with some water and add 1 tbsp of salt, mix it well. The salt makes the bitter gourd release some juice and it takes away some bitterness. This step is optional but highly recommended.
  4. Now in a kadhai / heavy bottomed pan, heat some oil.  I use peanut oil and it works really well for this dish.
  5. Prepare phodani or tadka, by adding mustard seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, hing and turmeric powder.
  6. Now add bitter melon pieces by removing all the water. If you like squeeze out the water as much as you can.
  7. Stir fry it for 2-3 minutes.
  8. Now add ground peanuts, grated coconut, tamarind paste and mix it well.
  9. Add red chili powder, cumin-coriander powder, Goda masala and finally some salt. Mix everything together and let it cook for another 2-3 minutes.
  10. Add jaggery, cook it further for 2 minutes.
  11. Adjust the amount of jaggery / salt as per your taste.

Enjoy it hot with poli or fulka! Bon apetite!

bitter gourd stir fry

Breakfast/ Events/ Punjabi/ Roti Paratha Dosa & More/ Winter Special

मुळ्याचे पराठे / Muli Paratha and WTML April 2013 Event Announcement with a Giveaway!!

मुळा / Muli or White Radish and शेपू / Savaa or Dill, the two vegetables I hated from my core white I was little. I gave my mom hard time since she either had to convince me for eating it or make something else . Convincing me was a harder task than preparing something else. She tried many ways to hide these vegetables in other dishes. the characteristic smell the two vegetables have turned out to be my biggest advantage.

It was quite rare to have my mom open the door for me as I return from school since her office timings never coincided with my school hours. It was one of those lucky days during Ganapati Festival. The rains were unstoppable and my mom decided to come home early. When I saw her at the door, I could not stop smiling. She then served me a ‘garama-garam’ (hot from the pan) paratha with mango pickle which is her ultimate speciality I have yet to conquer and some yogurt. It was so yummy and so satisfying. You can imagine, the slight coldness in the air with continuous pouring rains, the background Ganapati music which does not stop until power is completely disrupted (including generators)  and these soft, hot yummy parathas. I gave my mom a tight hug and said thank you for such delicious “aloo parathas”. Her smile only became bigger at that point. She replied, “Sure only if aloo was a new name for muli in my dictionary” Duh! Well since then muli paratha has been a permanent entry in our house menu and my favorite dishes.

Muli Paratha

 

Muli Paratha

Muli Paratha

Healthy and hearty Indian flat bread with white radish stuffing!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

Method:

  1. Prepare chapati dough by adding chapato flour, salt, red chili powder, turmeric, oil and warm water. 
  2. Add a tsp of hot oil and knead well.
  3. To prepare stuffing, in a medium bowl add grated white radish and boiled and smashed potatoes.
  4. Now add other spices and finely chopped coriander and mix well.
  5. The actual paratha is similar to any other parathas. For detailed instructions follow this procedure.
  6. Serve it hot with pickle and raita.

Tips:

White Radish sometimes has very strong smell. You can squeeze out the water from grated radish by adding some salt to it. By adding fennel seeds and ajwain seeds  help to reduce the strong smell.  Be careful with the salt if you add it to the grated radish, the stuffing and the dough.

 

muli parathaAnd now the Event Announcement! Last year I came across this wonderful event called WTML – Walking Through Memory Lane”. The event is a brainchild of Gayathri, a lovely lady and super innovative cook who writes about her culinary creations at Gayathri’s Cook Spot. As the name suggests, the event is all about recreating your childhood favorite dishes prepared by your mom, gradma, aunt or anyone special in your life. This is our chance to pay a small tribute to their cooking. I was instantly drawn to this idea and I submitted my “Rava Cake” recipe to her event and luckily I was the winner for that month’s giveaway. I received the wonderful book – Chocolate Cookbook by Tarla Dalal from Gayathri.

Long story short, Thanks to Gayathri, I am hosting this month’s WTML event at MyHomeMantra. Here are some simple rules.

  • Make your favorite dish which makes you cherish your childhood moments and also tell us a small story about the dish. Not just the recipe!
  • No restrictions on the number of story telling entries.
  • Only vegetarians dishes please.
  • You can link your old entries if they are reposted with the below links and the logo.
  • Link your post to my announcement page and Gayathri’s  WTML event page. That’s mandatory.
  • Add this logo to your posts, it helps spread the word.
  • Non bloggers can send me your recipes at myhomemantra [at] gmail [dot] com
  • The event is open from April 1 to April 30th

And the Big Giveaway – Gayathri will select an entry through random selection and give away the book for the selected entry.

Note that the books Gayathri gives are not sponsored and it is her own contribution to the event. You get a whole year’s subscription of Tarla Dalal’s Cooking and More as the giveaway. I am not eligible for the give away.

On the first of May, Gayathri will select a lucky winner and send a mail. After receiving her mail,you can give an address to which she has to ship the book. She will ship the book within India so if you reside abroad, please give an address in India for her to ship.

Let’s cherish our childhood memories with this wonderful event!


Appetizers/ Entertaining/ Mediterranean/ Snacks

Baked Falafel with Cucumber Dip

Healthy can be Yummy!

There was a time when I had Falafel wrap from Dish N Dash at least once a week. I really miss this place. Falafel was on my list for a long time but “deep-fried” and “cleaning-after-deep-frying” were the main reasons to put it off. This weekend I decided to give it a shot and instead of frying I baked flattened falafel balls and here is the result –

It takes much less time and it’s a no-mess recipe. Definitely a keeper. I served these falafel with cool cucumber dip.

Baked Falafel

Baked Falafel

Easy, Healthy and Delicious!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. I did not use canned Garbanzo beans, hence I soaked them overnight in water. Next day I cooked them in a steamer until you can smash them with a fork. Don't overcook else it will form a paster when you grind them. If you are using canned beans, skip this step and instead just drain the water and follow along.
  2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  3. In a food processor (DO NOT use grinder / blender), add chana (garbanzo beans) and roughly chopped cilantro and pulse it few times until you get roughly chopped mixture. Be careful not to over blend it.
  4. Now take the mixture in a medium mixing bowl and add all other ingredients which include finely chopped onion, finely chopped garlic and olive oil and other spices and salt to taste. Add lemon juice and mix well.
  5. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and grease the paper with few drops of oil. Alternatively, you can use the cooking spray but it's not needed.
  6. Drop one table spoon of mixture on the sheet leaving enough space to spread the mixture.
  7. With your fingers, slightly flatten the balls on the baking sheet. 
  8. Since these are baked and not fried, only the flatten sides with become crispy so if you want go ahead and make them thinner.
  9. Bake these for 15-17 minutes until their bottom becomes golden brown. Once done, they slide out easily. 
  10. Take them out and turn each falafel and bake the other side for another 10 minutes.
  11. Serve hot with tahini, hummus or cucumber dip. 

Linking it to Foodomania’s Christmas Cook-Off Contest

Appetizers

Cucumber Dip

Cucumber with yogurt is always so refreshing. Here is  under-10-minutes recipe for a quick, satisfying dip.

Cucumber Dip

Cucumber Dip

Or a mini version of cucumber koshmbir

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Wash the cucumber and cut both the side.
  2. If you prefer, peel the skin off. 
  3. Grate it using a grater.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk yogurt with sugar and salt.
  5. Add other spices and mix well.
  6. Add grated cucumber and mix again.
  7. If you like, add finely chopped cilantro.
  8. Serve cold!
Breakfast/ Continental/ Quick n Healthy/ Snacks

Spinach Pancakes

Hearty and Healthy twist to traditional pancakes

Imaging a light fluffy pancake topped with butter, maple syrup, whipped cream and fresh berries…. Yum! Pancakes are great for breakfast pleasures but they are not healthy! Today I decided to transform this classic American breakfast into a savory, healthy dish with Indian touch.

I used multi-grain flour instead of all purpose flour. I substituted sugar with salt and red chili powder, stirred in lots of  veggies like finely chopped spinach, cilantro, tomatoes and red onions with some coriander-cumin powder together with fennel seeds and ajwain seeds for an extra kick. The result? Outstandingly tasty and healthy pancakes – made from scratch!

Spinach Pancakes

Spinach Pancakes

Hearty and Healthy twist to traditional pancakes

Ingredients:

Method

You can buy multi grain flour in Indian stores or Whole Foods Market in bulk section. Whole wheat flour works too.

Finely chop spinach leaves, a tomato and about a half medium red onion.

Mix all dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Whisk an egg in a separate bowl and add it to the dry ingredients. Next goes milk. Whisk until smooth batter forms. Then stir in all veggies. The batter should be spoonable but not pourable. Adjust the consistency by adding either spoonful of water or flour as needed.

Heat a skillet over medium-high flame, add little oil or use non-stick oil spray.

Place a ladle full of batter on the skillet and spread it into a pancake. Cook until the wet side of pancake bubbles. Flip and cook the other side for another 2-3 minutes until brown.

 

These savory pancakes are packed with flavor, good amount of Iron, Calcium, Vitamin A and fibre.

Sending this to Kiran‘s “Cooking with Whole Foods – Spinach” event hosted at cook’s joy.

HITS – Iron rich foods started by Sangee.

And to “Healthy Diet – Breakfast” by Priya’s Versatile Recipes hosted at Roshni’s Kitchen.

Maharashtrian/ Smoothie/ Upvasache Padarth

ताक / Chaas / Buttermilk

A pure, simple summer refresher

Buttermilk has always been an integral part of traditional Maharashtrian meal. Imagine coming home from scorching heat and sipping on a glass of cold, lightly spiced homemade buttermilk. There is no better thirst quencher!

 

It’s very simple, just takes 5 minutes to mix everything together.

Buttermilk

Buttermilk

Churned yogurt wil a pinch of cooling spices and herbs. A natural summer refresher!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Beat the yogurt nicely and mix with water
  2. Add all other ingredients and mix well.
  3. Serve cold. (You may also add ice)

If you like you can also add finely chopped cilantro and mint leaves. In South India, it's served with curry leaves.

Surprisingly not everyone knows about buttermilk. One of my colleagues thought it was made by adding milk to butter. It actually referes to the liquid left over after extracting the butter from churned yogurt. The churning process causes some of the lactose – milk sugar, to be converted into lactic acid by the bacteria, which gives the buttermilk a slightly sour taste and makes it easier to digest by lactose-intolerant people. In USA this is called “traditional buttermilk” and of course this is how we make it at home.

The buttermilk we get in supermarkets is called “Cultured Buttermilk”. t is prepared from pasteurized skim or low-fat milk by fermentation with bacteria that produces lactic acid.

source – http://www.webexhibits.org/butter/buttermilk.html

Off to Radhika’s Chilled Delights, Tomato Blues Summer Spirits, Preeti’s Jump n Jive, Surabhi’s EP SEries – Mint n Coriander started by Erivum Puliyum.

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