Thursday, June 26, 2008

CLICK: Yellow for Bri

Yellow is the color of hope and enlightenment. And through the work of the LiveStrong Foundation, it has also come to signify the fight against cancer.

This month's theme for the CLICK event is "Yellow for Bri". Bri is a fellow food blogger who is waging a war against breast cancer. The team organising the JUNE edition of CLICK at Jugalbandi has organised a fundraiser to help Bri and her family meet her out-of-pocket medical costs for ONE YEAR. I have given my contribution.. Now its your turn if you haven't done so already! Please help Bri in her fight against cancer.

And here is my entry for CLICK

Hope this will cheer you up, Bri! Wish you a speedy recovery!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Nupur's Frankie

Nupur's blog has been one of my favorite ever since my non-food-blogging days... I grew up in Pune. So very often I used to feel like eating a Maharashtrian dish or two and more often than not, google search would point me to Nupur's blog. I tried several of her recipes which turned out great! and thats how I became a regular visitor...

When Zlamushka of Burnt Mouth announced that the next blog for Tried and Tasted is One Hot Stove, I knew it was going to be easy! coz I have already tried and tasted so many of Nupur's recipes like Thalipeeth , Misal, Grilled Cheese, Indian Style , Onion Bhajji and Pav Bhaji. Now these were before I started my food blog.. so no pictures! (I did make the Pav bhaji recently but it got gobbled up before I could take any pictures!) Since I started the blog I made Veg. Club Sandwich which I blogged about here.

And most recently, I made Nupur's Veg Frankie which as usual turned out to be great!!!

I made some variations.. I didn't use the egg and sliced up the onion instead of mincing them. Oh and used my "tamarind chutney" .. I just love to use it with anything chatpata ;) Here's my version of the recipe (my changes are in italics)

4 flour tortillas/rotis
2 large/3 medium potatoes, boiled, peeled and smashed
1 pepper (red or green), diced
1 small onion, sliced
2 tbsp cilantro, minced
1 tsp chaat masala
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp red chilli powder/cayenne pepper
4 tsp of my tamarind chutney
salt to taste

To make the filling:
1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan.
2. Fry the pepper and boiled potatoes till browned and crispy.
3. Remove pan from heat. Add cilantro, lemon juice and all the spices, tasting to check that the mixture is tangy and well-seasoned. The filling is ready.

To assemble each frankie,
1. Heat a tortilla in a non-stick pan.
2. Remove from pan, spread some tamarind chutney on it.
3. Add some filling on top and then add the sliced onion.

4. Roll it up and serve hot!

It was hard for me to not grab the frankie and eat it up right away while I took the pictures. As you can probably guess, it didn't stay for too long on that plate! :)

Nupur, if I didn't say it in my "silent visitor" days, I want to say it now that you have a wonderful blog and I admire the way you present your recipes! Loved your A-Z recipe series.. and am simply in awe of your knitting escapades right now. Your recipes are delicious and your blog is the one, along with few others, that inspired me to start my own blog! So a very, very big THANK YOU to you!!

This is my entry for Zlamushka's Tried and Tasted

It also goes to MBP: Street Food which is being hosted by Sia at Monsoon Spice this month. MBP was the brainchild of Coffee from The Spice Cafe

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Aloo Paratha

Am I on roll or what? 2 posts in 2 days! Thats quite something going by my standards... ;)
Well what can I do.. with so many blog events taking place and Roti Mela just around the corner, I cannot not blog abt my favorite Aloo paratha!

Now I know there are several Aloo paratha recipes out there but I had to share with you this recipe that I learnt from my mom years ago. Mummy used to make these in a jiffy, be it for breakfast or for packing it in my lunch box for school (which of course I didn't get to eat coz my friends used to just pounce on it and finish it in matter of minutes!! oh well, I then ate the maharashtrian goodies or idli chutney in their lunch boxes! so no complains.. but I digress...)

This is a very simple recipe and quick to make if you have the basic hang of rolling out parathas.

2 cups whole wheat flour
warm water for kneading

For filling:
2 potatoes
2 green chillies - chopped fine
1 tsp coriander pwd
1/2 tsp chili pwd
1/2 tsp chaat masala
1 tsp roasted jeera pwd
1/4 tsp garam masala
salt to taste
fresh coriander leaves chopped

1. Knead the dough with warm water. Cover and keep aside.
2. Boil the potatoes - I use microwave for this. Put them in a plastic grocery bag close the top and just heat for 3-5 mins. No water needed. The potatoes get "boiled" in the steam.
3. Peel and mash the potatoes.
4. Now add all the dry masalas, green chillies and coriander leaves. Mix well. Filling is ready.
5. Put the Tava on gas to heat up

Roll out the parathas now as follows:
(and this time I have taken step-by-step pictures!! :)
1. Take a golf sized ball of the dough and roll it out to a 3-4 inches diameter circle
2. Put some ghee in the center
3. Then place some filling on it.

4. Cover the filling and seal as shown in the following pic

5. Now roll it out again to a bigger circle.. using dry flour as needed.

6. Put it on the heated tava now and let it cook for 30-40 sec.
7. Flip it over and apply ghee and flip it back
8. Now it should fluff up. Put ghee on this side too and flip again.
9. Press it with a roti fluffer like in this pic so the other side cooks well.

10. Turn it over, apply more ghee if needed and cook the other side now.

Paratha is done! Serve hot with your favorite achaar and raita.

This goes to Srivalli's Roti Mela.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

"Tamarind Chutney" from Applesauce!

No chaat item is complete without having tamarind chutney with it.. I like to have this chutney in my fridge all the time to satisfy those sudden urges of eating bhel, pani puri or papdi chaat ;) It goes well with any appetizer too (like the bread rolls in my prev post).

I was spoiled in San Jose since there was no dearth of Indian stores and we used to readily get everything we needed including the chutney. My chachiji, who's been living in NJ for almost 30 yrs, had told me a method of making this chutney from Applebutter by simply adding some spices to it.. but I never tried it because I never needed to.. Since coming to Rotterdam, I'd been struggling to find a good chutney. I tried finding Applebutter too.. but couldn't find it or rather I got applesauce instead of applebutter. Finally, I found a recipe of making tamarind chutney using applesauce here and modified it a bit to use prunes and no tamarind at all!

You can see step-by-step pictures in the original post. Here's the slightly modified version of the recipe that I use.

250 mL applesauce, unsweetened
1 1/2 c water
1/2 c sugar, either white or brown (packed)
10-12 Prunes
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black salt (kala namak), heaped
1/2 tsp red chili powder, heaped
1 tsp lemon juice or to taste
1 tsp coarsely ground roasted cumin seeds

1. Place applesauce in microwavable bowl.
2. Break up the prunes and place them on top of the applesauce.
3. Add the sugar and spices on top also.
4. Add the water but do not mix.
5. Place this in the microwave for 1 minute at max power. Remove from microwave and stir.
6. Next microwave the mixture for 1 1/2 minutes and then stir well for 1 minute.
7. Microwave it again for 2 minutes and then stir
8. Next cook for 3 minutes but stop every minute or so and stir or it may boil over
9. Finally, remove the bowl and stir for a minute or two mashing up the prunes.
10. Cool it a bit and then blend using a hand blender to thicken the chutney
11. Finally add roasted cumin seeds and lemon juice to taste and mix well.
12. Cool completely and refrigerate.

This can easily be made on stove top too... just keep heating (on medium-low) and stirring the mixture till prunes are all mashed up. Then cool and blend with a handblender.

Now I have my fav "tamarind chutney" in fridge all the time! Thanks burekaboy for the original recipe.

This is my entry to Srivalli's MEC:Bottled event. My first entry to an MEC event :)

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Bread Rolls

One of our favorite snack which often finds its way on the table nowadays, even for brunch, is Bread Rolls. I always loved this and remember learning to make it from my mom in my teens itself. After I got married, I figured, this is G's favorite as well! Whenever we go to India to his Nani's place, this is the first thing that gets served for breakfast!! :)

I didn't make it too many times in San Jose, since I used to avoid frying stuff.. But here, with the weather being cloudy and rainy all the time, I've been making it quite often, sometimes for brunch and sometimes with tea. And since we walk and bike so much here (its Netherlands, we have no cars, but cycles!) I don't even feel guilty of eating all the fried food coz we burn those calories in a jiffy!

So here are some droolworthy bread rolls followed by the recipe

1 large boiled potato - mashed
1/2 onion - chopped fine
1 green chilli - chopped fine
4 bread slices - edges removed
1/4 tsp red chilli powder
1/4 tsp garam masala powder
1/4 tsp chaat masala
1/2 tsp roasted cumin powder
1 tsp dried mint powder
Salt to taste
Vegetable oil as required

1. Mix mashed potato, chopped onion, green chilli and all the dry masalas well.
2. Wet a bread slice with water slightly and then squeeze out excess water by pressing the bread slice (flat) between the palms.
3. Take a small ball of the potato mixture and put it in the center of the bread slice. Seal all the edges of the bread. Use little water to seal if needed.
4. Gently roll it between your palms to give it an elongated shape. Ensure that the potato mixture is completely covered with the bread slice.
5. Similarly make all the 4 bread rolls.
6. Heat oil in a deep frying pan on high. Reduce the heat.
7. Deep fry the bread rolls until golden brown.
8. Remove on paper towel to get rid of excess oil.
9. Serve hot with your favorite chutney or chilli sauce!

I served it here with some home made "tamarind chutney" made out of applesauce. Will post that recipe soon.

This recipe is my entry for Monthly Mingle - Appetizers & Hors D'oeuvres being guest hosted by Mansi . Monthly Mingle was started by Meeta of What's For Lunch Honey?.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Palak Paneer

Here is my last minute entry to the Fortune Cooking event being hosted at SpicyTasty. I have chosen Sagittarius as the zodiac sign and Spinach as my ingredient. My hubby G. is a Saggi and he simply loves Palak Paneer! I take so long (well at least half hr) to make it and he laps it up in less than 5 mins! So this recipe totally fits the bill for the fortune cooking contest!

Here's a little something about Sagittarius from Wikipedia - Sagittarius folks are supposed to be highly free-spirited, optimistic, adventurous and energetic people who love to travel! All of these hold true for G. He is so much fun to be around, has a great sense of humor and hardly gets bothered by small details (unlike the Leo me!). We both, however, share the love for travel and have been to several great trips all around the world, with many more to come I am sure!

In any case, without further ado, here's the recipe for Palak Paneer

1 bunch fresh Spinach - chopped (or 1 packet chopped frozen Spinach)
250 gm Paneer - cubed
1 medium Onion - chopped
1 Tomato - chopped
1 inch Ginger - grated
2-3 Green Chillies - chopped
1 tsp Cumin Seeds
Salt to taste
1-2 tbsp Oil

1. Cook chopped spinach with green chillies in 1/2 cup of water till it wilts and turns soft. (Thaw frozen spinach before cooking).
2. Heat the oil in a pan and add cumin seeds.
3. Add grated ginger and roast for 1 min.
4. Add chopped onion and cook it till it turns transparent
5. Once the onion is done, add chopped tomato. Cook it till it turns mushy.
6. Turn off the heat. Add cooked spinach and mix well
7. Now use a hand blender and blend the mixture to a smooth paste
8. Add salt and cook this mixture covered for 5-10 minutes more
9. Meanwhile, heat 2 tbsp oil in a non-stick pan and add Paneer cubes to it
10. Shallow fry them for a few minutes till they turn golden brown.
(If using frozen paneer, then thaw the paneer, cube it and microwave it in some water for 5 mins to make it soft. I don't shallow fry the paneer then.. it can be added straight to the spinach.)
11. Add fried Paneer cubes to the cooked spinach mixture and cook covered for another 5 mins
12. Palak paneer is done! Serve hot with rotis or parathas