Saturday, June 26, 2010

Kobichi Bhaji with chana dal

This is one of my most favourite bhaji (read as bhaaji).  This is one such vegetable available all over the world and at a cheap rate.  It is very versatile also.  It goes well with carrots, peas, onion, tomato, potato, chana dal as well as Moong dal.  Very healthy and I think it is very easily available everywhere.  This is a typical maharashtrian recipe of cabbage.  Almost prepared like a stir-fry.  Chana dal/bengal gram dal in this bhaji gives somewhat nutty taste to this stir-fry.

4 cups Cabbage chopped finely
1/4 cup Chana dal/Bengal gram dal soaked in water for 1 hour
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder (haldi)
1/4 tsp Asafoetida (Hing)
5-6 Curry leaves
3-4 Green chilies slitted
Salt to taste
2 tbsp Oil
2-3 tbsp Fresh/frozen desiccated coconut to garnish (Optional)
2 tbsp Coriander leaves chopped to garnish

Wash and chop the cabbage.
Wash and soak the chana dal in water for 1 hour.
After 1 hour drain the excess water and keep the dal aside.

In a pan heat oil and add mustard sand cumin seeds.
Let it crackle. Add the turmeric powder, asafoetida, green chilies, curry leaves and the chana dal.
Saute for 2 minutes.  Add a little bit salt and cover.
Let the dal cook half way.
Now add the chopped cabbage and mix well.  Adjust salt.
Cook the cabbage with lid on for 7- 8 minutes or till soft on medium flame.
Stir in between.  If you feel that the cabbage is sticking to the bottom, then sprinkle some water.
Garnish with coconut and coriander. Serve hot with chapattis or phulkas.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Pani Puri for ICC and my 50th post

Just by hearing the name of pani puri I start drooling.  My elder son & I, both love pani puri.  That's why when I saw Srivalli's Indian Cooking Challenge for this month I decided this will be my 50th post.
Here is the simple recipe of Pani Puri.

For making Puris
1/2 cup Sooji (Semolina )
1/2 tbsp Maida ( Plain Refined Flour)
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
Salt to taste
Oil for Frying
For Spicy water:
1 1/2 cups Chopped Mint Leaves
1 tbsp Chopped Coriander Leaves
1/3 cup Tamarind
1" Ginger
4-5 Green Chillies
1 tsp Ground Cumin Seed (roasted)
1 1/2 tsp Kala Namak (Black Salt )
Salt to taste
For filling
1 Boiled Potato finely chopped /mashed
Salt to taste
Red chilli.
For Red Tamarind Chutney
1 cup Tamarind
1/2 cup Jaggery
2 tbsp Sugar
1/2 tsp Red chilli powder
1 tsp Dry Roasted cumin powder
1/4 tsp Kali Mirch (Black pepper) powder
2 cloves
2 cups Warm water
1 tsp Oil
Salt to taste

For Puris:
In a bowl take semolina, plain flour, Cooking Soda, salt, 2 tablespoons of oil and knead well to make a stiff dough, leave it bit stiffer than normal.
Cover it with a wet muslin cloth and let it rest for 15 mins.
Then pinch out very small balls and roll them into small circles.
Remember you will be eating these as whole, so make small circles
Put the rolled out circles back under the muslin cloth while you are rolling the rest and before they can be fried.
Heat oil in a thick bottomed pan, deep fry the puris.
The idea is to puff them and fry them till golden brown.
Take them out and put them on kitchen paper towel, to get rid of the extra oil.
Allow the puris to cool before storing them in an airtight container. Else they will become soggy.
For making spicy water or Pani
Extract pulp from the tamarind.
Add mint leaves, coriander, ginger, chillies and dry roasted cumin seed to the tamarind pulp. Add little water and blend to a smooth paste.
Add salt and black rock salt to taste.
Put it in the fridge to cool down.
Add water as required.
For making Red Tamarind Chutney
Extract the pulp from tamarind.
In a pan dry roast the cumin seeds and the cloves. Pound them into coarse powder.
To the tamarind pulp add jaggery, sugar, red chilli powder, black pepper powder, roasted cumin powder, cloves and salt.
Put the mixture in a pan and heat for 5 minutes on medium heat.
Remove from heat and let it cool down.
This will tend to thicken up, so add warm water if it becomes too thick.
Once it cools, blend the contents in a blender to a smooth paste.
Assembling the Pani Puri
Poke a small hole in the center of the Puri
Add a tsp of mashed boiled potato in the middle of the puri. Add a little of the red tamarind Chutney.
Dip it in the spicy water / pour some spicy water in it.  The idea is to fill the puri with water.
Gulp it down.  It's challenging here, you have to put the puri in mouth without breaking it.
Have fun.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Chickpeas salad or Chana Chaat

This is one of our new favorite these days.  Every body especially DH loves this than the chola actually.  This is very easy you can use the canned chickpeas or you can soak and boil on your own.

2 cups chana/garbanzo beans/chickpeas soaked overnight/6-8 hours
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
1 raw mango chopped/grated
1 small potato boiled & cubed
1 tsp chaat masala
2 tbsp coriander leaves chopped
1/4 th tsp Red chilli powder
1-2 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp roasted cumin powder(optional)
1-2 green chillies, slitted through 
1 tsp black pepper freshly ground
2 tbsp fresh pomegranate seeds(Optional)
1 tbsp chopped bell pepper (Optional)

Pressure cook the soaked chana/garbanzo beans/chickpeas for 2-3 whistles.  Add salt before boiling.  They should be soft but not too soft/mushy.
Drain the chickpeas.  Place in a mixing bowl.  Now add the potato cubes, onions, tomatoes, mango, bell pepper & pomegranate seeds, if using.  Add the chopped coriander leaves and green chilli.
Add the  Salt, chilli powder. roasted cumin powder and pepper powder.  Sprinkle lemon juice.
You can serve this chilled as salad or for evening snack as chaat.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Healthy protein-Soy Cutlets

I wanted to prepare these for a very long time, but every time I used to make something else.  But this time I did it.  They were a big hit in my home both my kids loved and liked them.  Here is the simple recipe I used from the nutrela soy granules box and I made some changes according to my family's liking.  Here is the simple recipe.

2 cups boiled Nutrela granules
3 medium potatoes boiled
10-12 french beans chopped finely
2 fistfuls of green peas, blanched/boiled
1 carrot cubed and boiled
6 green chillies chopped finely
3 bread slices/ 1/4 th cup of bread crumbs, I used bread crumbs.
1 tsp chaat masala
1 tsp amchur powder
Handful of moong sprouts (Optional)
2 tbsp coriander leaves (Optional)
Oil for deep-frying

In a mixing bowl, keep the boiled potatoes, peas and carrots, and thinly chopped french beans.
Add the boiled and squeezed soya granules to the same bowl.
Add salt, green chillies, chaat masala, amchur powder, moong sprouts & coriander leaves if using.  
Mash and bind with the bread crumbs or soak the bread slices in water for few seconds and remove from water and squeeze.  Make like dough.
Pinch balls and shape like patties.
Heat oil in a kadai/wok or frying pan, deep fry. 
Serve hot with onion slices & Coriander-mint dip.