Sunday, 30 November 2014

Basbousa - Egyptian Semolina Cake

This month for Home Bakers Challenge I chose to make this simple Egyptian semolina cake which was suggested by Nupur  .  Known as Basbousa basically this is a simple semolina cake .


Usually when we make a cake sugar is added before the cake is baked. But here the cake is first baked with very less sugar and then sugar syrup is poured on the baked cake which is still hot. This makes the cake moist and keeps it super soft for a longer time.








Ingredients :

2 cups .....................rawa ( semolina )
1/2 cup ..................sugar
1/2 cup................... scraped coconut
2 tbsp.......................ghee
1 tsp........................baking powder
1/2 cup.......................milk
3/4  cup....................buttermilk
few drops................vanilla essence
few almonds



For Sugar Syrup :

1 cup....................sugar
1 cup.....................water
1 tbsp...................rose water








Method :


Mix all the ingredients except almonds .

Keep the mixture in fridge for 2 hours.

Now grease a cake tin and pour the mixutre in it.

Press almonds on the batter top to garnish it.

Bake in a preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes at 180 degrees.

Make sugar syrup by boiling water and sugar.

Let the mixture boil for 2 - 3 minutes and switch off the gas.

When warm add rose water to the syrup.

Cut the baked basbouse into pieces when still warm.

Pour the warm sugar syrup on the baked cake immediately.

This will ensure that all the sugar syrup is soaked properly.

This makes the cake very moist and soft.







Saturday, 29 November 2014

Rajasthani Bhindi Masala

 I have seen many people who hate eating lady's fingers or bhindi. Bhindi sabji sometimes tends to become sticky and that is what puts off most of the people away.

But if you add some sour ingredient like mango powder, tamarind juice, lemon juice etc it helps in reducing this stickiness and makes the sabji very interesting.

 Try this yummy rajasthani preparation and you will be left asking for more.

The deep frying in this recipe makes this dish super delicious though it increases the oil content. But then once in a while we all need some indulgence.






Ingredients :


1/4 kg .....................Bhindi ( lady's fingers)
2 ............................potatoes
2 ...........................onions ( sliced )
2 ...........................tomatoes
1 tsp......................chilly powder
1/2 tsp...................garam masala (Dhania , jeera , dalchini, lavang )
1 tsp....................dry mango powder ( amchoor )
1/4 tsp................turmeric powder
1 tbsp...............oil
salt
oil for deep frying




Method :


Wash and cut the lady's fingers vertically in long finger like shape.

Wash peel and cut potatoes also length wise.

Cut tomatoes into medium pieces.

In a pan heat oil and deep fry the potatoes and lady's fingers little at a time.

Fry them till crisp, drain out the oil and keep aside.

Now in a non stick pan take 2 tbsp oil.

When the oil is hot add onions and saute till golden.

Add the tomato pieces and saute till the raw smell of tomatoes disappears.

Now add all the masala powders, salt and mix well.

Add fried potatoes and bhindi and stir.

Add 1/2 cup or more water and cover the pan with a lid.

Cook for 10 minutes or till you get a thick semi dry gravy.

Serve hot with rotis.



Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Sheermal - Persian Flat Bread ( We Knead To Bake )

Its that time of the month once again when we the members of we-knead-to-bake  post recipe
of some interesting bread suggested by aparna .

Last few months I missed this opportunity but now again I am back with this lovely soft and fluffy bread.This month our challenge was to make this soft Persian flat bread called Sheermal.

This velvetty bread is super soft with sweet milky taste. Though it tastes excellent with a side dish I preferred to eat it all by itself. The milk, ghee and saffron together lend a very aromatic touch to this bread. This was our dinner yesterday with chole and pickle.






Ingredients :


2 tsp .................sugar
1 tsp ..................dry active yeast
1/4 cup .............water ( lukewarm)
1........................egg
2 1/2 cups..........maida
1 tsp .................salt
4 tbsp...............ghee
5 to 6 tbsp.........milk
1/4 tsp...............rose essence
1/8 tsp.............saffron ( soaked in 1 tbsp milk )







Method :


Mix sugar , yeast and lukewarm water in a bowl and keep aside for 10 minutes.

When the mixture becomes frothy add maida.

Add egg, salt and mix it lightly with finger tips.

Add ghee gradually and continue mixing till you get a bread crumbs like texture.

Add rose essence and milk gradually and knead to get a soft elastic dough.

Apply ghee on dough and keep it in greased bowl.

Wrap the bowl and keep it for 1 hour for the dough to rise.

After 1 hour punch the dough , knead it and again keep it aside for 15 - 20 minutes.

Now knead it and make 4 to 5 balls from this dough.

Flatten with with your palms .

Brush the top with some saffron milk.

Bake at 180 degrees in a preheated oven.

Apply ghee and serve hot with any side dish.

Grilled tandoori pomfret



Today there is a craze among everyone to eat healthy . But again there are some who don't want to compromise on taste. I count myself among such few people. So I always try to find ways to make the dishes healthy as well as tastier.


 One such dish which I have always liked is this tandoori pomfrets. Very little oil used just for brushing makes it nutritious and the fish provides you high quality protein .

I have grilled the fish in the grill section of microwave but if you don't have a microwave you can shallow fry them in a non stick pan also. The fish will be tasty but you won't get the grilled effect.






Ingredients :

4 .......................Pomfrets
1 n 1/2 tbsp.......tandoori masala
2 tsp.................chilly powder
2 tsp.................turmeric powder
1 tbsp...............lemon juice
salt
oil for brushing
2 .....................onion ( cut in rings )


Method :


To clean the fish scarp the tough layer on pomfrets with a blunt knife and trim the side fins.

Give a cut from side ways carefully with a sharp knife keeping the head n tail intact.

Clean the stomach  and wash the pomfrets thoroughly.

Mix all masala powders with salt and lemon juice .

Apply this paste to the pomfrets properly from all sides.






Marinate for 2 hours or more.

Arrange them on a well greased plate.

Grill in a microwave for total 10 to 12 minutes.

Turn them over and grill the other side again for 10 to 12 minutes.

Serve hot with onion rings .






Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Green Vegatable Pulav



Want to make something filling , nutritious and tasty ?  Then try this easy to make one meal dish. I have added carrots, sweet corn, french beans and cauliflower in this pulav . But you can surely add or omit the vegetables as per what is available in your kitchen . Serve this pulav hot with papad or boondi ka raita .








Ingredients :


1 cup....................fresh sweet corn / green peas
1 cup....................carrots ( washed and cubed)
1 cup....................french beans ( washed stringed and chopped)
1 cup....................cauliflower florets
1 cup....................onion ( chopped )
3 cups ................basmati or pulav rice ( washed and drained )
3 to 4 tbsp...........oil
salt







For the Green Masala :


fistful ......................fresh coriander leaves
6 to 8 .....................green chillies
5 to 6 ....................garlic cloves
1 inch....................ginger piece
2 to 3 ...................cloves
1/2 inch.................cinnamon
2 .........................cardamoms
7 to 8 ................pepper
1/2 tsp.................cumin seeds








Method :


Grind all the ingredients given under green masala without adding water and keep aside

Heat oil directly in the pressure cooker and add chopped onions.

Saute the onions till translucent and add all the vegetables one by one.

Saute them all till they are semi soft.

Now add the ground masala and saute till oil separates.

Finally add drained rice and again saute till rice is well coated with masala ( for 5 minutes)

Now add 5 cups hot water in the cooker and pressure cook the pulav to just 2 whistles.

Switch off the flames and let the rice be inside till the pressure goes down on its own.

This ensures that each rice grain separates and cooks properly.

Serve with pickle, papad and raita of your choice.






Sunday, 16 November 2014

Badam Ka Halwa - For ICC

I am back doing challenges after a long gap and the first recipe which I am going to do this month is Badam Ka Halwa for  ICC ( Indian Cooking Challenge )  by Srivalli . In this we members make a traditional Indian recipe and post it on every 15th of the month.

Rajasthan is better known for its spicy n vibrant dishes but the sweet dishes from this state too are very famous . I have already made few rajasthani sweets like Gond ke laddoo , Ghevar , Mawa Kachori  in the past. So this time when I came to know that for ICC we were supposed to make this Badam ka Halwa I was happy.

   Cold in Rajasthan being very severe this halwa is usually consumed in winters and that too only few teaspoonfuls because Badam ( almonds ) as you all know are heaty. I came to know about this halwa a few years back through one of my rajasthani friends and since then I make this halwa in winters and we eat 1 tsp of this halwa for breakfast during winters.

This is a very easy n healthy recipe .You can make this in more quantity and store it in fridge for almost a month.






Ingredients :


1/2 cup .....................Almonds ( soaked in warm water )
5 tbsp......................ghee ( preferably home made )
4 tbsp......................sugar
1/ tsp.......................crushed cardamon seeds
4 tbsp......................milk powder.
1/2 cup..................warm water


Method :


Soak the almonds in warm water for 1 hour .

Grind the almonds along with the skin to a smooth but dry paste.

In a non stick pan add ghee and stir fry this paste till light golden in colour.

Now slowly add warm water and sugar ,

Lower the heat and cover the pan with lid.

Let the mixture cook till u get thick porridge like consistency.

Now add milk powder and crushed cardamoms .

Mix well till ghee seperates.

Your halwa is ready to be served .




Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Paneer Ke Pakode



Paneer Pakoda is a very easy breezy starter . Whenever you have little time and want something delicious you can count on this dish. I usually make the paneer for this pakodas at home by adding lemon juice to boiling milk and curdling it. Such home made cottage cheese is more smooth and crumbly. But if you want you can make these pakodas with store bought paneer also.






Ingredients for pakodas : 


250 gm ................paneer ( cottage cheese )
2  ......................onion ( very finely chopped )
2 ......................boiled potatoes ( peeled and mashed)
2 to 3 ..............green chillies ( very finely chopped)
fistful.................fresh coriander leaves ( finely chopped )
2 tsp................cumin coriander powder
1 tsp................sugar
salt



Batter for frying :


1/2 cup.................besan ( chick pea flour )
1/2 tsp...................turmeric powder
1/4 tsp...................chilly powder
1/4 tsp..................ajwain powder
salt
oil for deep frying



Method :


Mix all ingredients given in pakoda well .

Roll them into 1 inch elongated shapes. ( makes about 12 to 14 ).

Now in a vessel mix all the things for batter except oil.

Make a thick batter like that of idli batter consistency.

Dip the elongated pakodas in this batter and deep fry in hot oil til golden in colour.

Serve hot with chutney of ketchup.





Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Lima Beans Curry ( Karwari Style )

Its really been a long long time since I last posted something here. But now I have made a promise
 to myself to be regular in posting . So  today to start with I am posting the recipe of this simple but
 yummy Lima Beans Curry - with  karwari-sambar-masala . I am sure u all will like it.

I usually cook these beans in north indian style with lots of onions n tomatoes along with ginger garlic paste. Yesterday I soaked the lima beans and then realised that I am craving for something authentically karwari, ( As I was back from a vacation and was deprived of home cooked food ) So I decided to try this curry the karwari style. No need to say that the curry tasted amazing and we loved having it with hot rice n potato phodi .  Finally enjoying being back at home.





Ingredients : 


1 cup......................Lima beans
1 cup....................fresh grated coconut
3 to 4 ..................dry red chillies
1 /2 tsp................turmeric powder
1 tbsp.................. karwari-sambar-masala
2 to 3 .................dry kokam pieces
1 tbsp..................jaggery
1 tsp...................mustard seeds
1/4 tsp...............asefoetida (hing)
2 sprigs............curry leaves ( I have not used )
2 tbsp.................coconut oil
salt



Method :


Soak the lima beans over night and pressure cook them for 20 to 25 minutes till soft.

Grind coconut with dry red chillies and haldi.

In a pan heat coconut oil and give a tadka of mustard seeds , curry leaves and hing.

Add the cooked beans and saute for 2 minutes.

Now add the ground coconut , sambar masala, jagerry, kokam and salt .

Add enough water and boil the curry for 5 minutes.

Serve hot with plain rice.