Sunday, July 5, 2015

Punjabi Chole - Ek masale wale / Just one spice

BM # 54   Week 3   Day 3

I am very fond of Chola or Channa as some call them. Chole Kulche, Chole Bhature, Chole Chaawal...anything is fine, with some fried green chilly and lemon slices, this meal tempts me immediately. Sadly we do not cook it very often as they do not suit my son. In spite of that I am forever finding a new variation to make these. On one of my searches I found this recipe by Sanjeev Kapoor.

The recipe is very simple where these Cholas are made with just one spice. Yes just one spice .Channa Masala! It was hard for me to believe that these would taste good with just that spice, but I gave it a try and trust me found the recipe unbelievably excellent. The gooseberry and the tea leaves add a wonderful colour to the Chole .

These cholas are my Day 3 post for Lentils three ways.

1 cup chickpeas
1 tbsp tea leaves
2-3 dried Indian gooseberry
6 tbsp oil
2 onions,chopped
4-6 green chillies, slit
2 potatoes, boiled, cubed
1 1/2 tsps Chana masala
1 cup tomato purée
Salt to taste

Soak the chickpeas overnight.
Drain and pressure cook them with four cups of water.
Tie a tbsp of tea leaves and gooseberry in a muslin cloth.
Add this bag and salt to the chickpeas and pressure cook for 6-8 whistles, or till the chickpeas are completely soft and cooked.
Drain the chickpeas , reserve the water.
Discard the tea bag.
Heat some oil and fry the cubes to a golden.Keep aside.
Add some more oil to the pan and saute onions and green chillies. Saute till onion is pink.
Add channa masala and saute for another few minutes.
Add the tomato purée and cook till dry.
Add the chickpeas and the reserved water from them.
Simmer and cook for 5-7 minutes.
Serve with fried potato cubes ,onions and green chilly.
These can be enjoyed with Bhaturas, Nan's, Kulchas and even rice.

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Saturday, July 4, 2015

Sindhi Aani Bassar / Fried Lentil Cakes in Thick Gravy

 BM # 54   Week 1   Day 2

Seyal Bhaaji's are very popular in Sindhi Cuisine , These are full of onions and that's what makes the gravy of the veggie. We have Seyal Bhindi, Seyal Meha patata, but the aani Bassar is one favorite of all. Here you make a dough with spiced Besan and make small tikkis, fry and add them to these onions. We have two versions of this dish, one with proper gravy and other Seyal one. So here is a Seyal Aani Bbassar for Day 2  Lentils 3 ways.

For Aani
2 cups  chick pea flour (Besan)
1 onion, finely chopped
¼ cup coriander finely chopped
2 green chilly finely chopped
2 tsp poppy seeds
¼ tsp red chilly pwd
4 tbsp oil
Salt to taste

Put the chick pea flour in a bowl.
Add all the ingredients.
Mix the flour with hands till resembles breadcrumbs.
Adding water ,bind to a semi soft dough.(this takes up little water so be careful)
Make small rounds and flatten like a tikki else roll them lengthwise.
Press sides to make them even.
Cut into pieces.
Deep fry.
These aanis have a very good shelf life,so you can make them and store for a few days.
Soak the required quantity in water.

The Gravy
8 large onions, chopped
1 tsp ginger paste
6 large tomatoes, finely chopped
2 green chillies
1 tsp coriander powder
1/8 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chilly powder
1/2 tsp Garam masala

Heat oil.
Add onions, ginger paste and green chillies.
Saute till translucent.
Drain the water from the deep fried aani.
Add these to the onions.
Add salt and turmeric powder.
Simmer the gas and place a lid on the pan .
Pour some water on the lid and let the onion cook on slow fire.
After the onion has become soft which shall take about 15-20 minutes add the tomatoes and the rest of spices.
Let the flame be slow for another 5 minutes.
The tomatoes will get mushy.
Now increase the flame and cook stirring very gently, so that the aani s do not break.
The water oozed from onions and tomatoes has to be be dried.
The end result would be a onion tomato gravy , a gravy which is very very thick .


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Friday, July 3, 2015

Hare Chane ki Chaat

BM # 54  Week 3  Day1

It's during winter we get these fresh green Channa or Garbanzo beans. These are a favorite with all of us and I love to cook with them. For the theme Lentils in three ways I have three different lentils and three different cuisines and three different courses. For today it is a Chaat with these fresh garbanzo beans.

This is a very popular Chaat and we see hawkers selling these in most states. I have seen hawkers in Delhi, here in Gujarat , I even saw some of these in a place like Haridwar. These hawkers normally use the dried beans which are soaked and then boiled. They have these ready . They have a small stove to cook these by adding onions, tomatoes etc. the chaat is nice and hot. The other version is where you have the boiled beans and these are mixed with accompaniments and served cold, just like a cold salad.

For today I have this as a cold salad.The other version is very interesting too, so look for it I shall post it very soon.

Hare chane ki Chaat
1 cup fresh green garbanzo beans.
1 onion
1 tomato
1/2 cucumber
1 green chilly
Coriander leaves
Chaat masala
Salt to taste
Lemon juice
Boil the beans with salt till soft. I used the pressure cooker and gave two whistles.
Drain the water and let cool.
Add finely chopped onions, tomatoes,cucumber, green chilly and coriander.
Add chaat masala and squeeze some lemon juice.
Mix well and serve .

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Friday, June 26, 2015

Corn and Cheese Fritters

BM # 53  Week 4  Day 2

Day 3 and I continue to cook fritters. Today we have Mexican Corn Fritters. If you check this on the net you will find umpteen variations of these fritters, some with milk, some with eggs, some with lots of flour too. I decided to have my own version, which turned out delicious with a crunchy top, and a soft should we get to the recipe?

Corn Fritters
2 cups corn kernels
3 tbsp APF
2 green chillies
1 onion, chopped
2 tbsp cheese, grated
Salt and pepper to taste
Oil for frying
Dried basil for garnish

Boil the corn kernels, let cool.
In a blender add green chilly, corn kernels, onion.
Pulse for a second. We just want all ingredients slightly crushed and blended .
Add the flour, cheese, salt and pepper.
Pulse again for a second.
Remove from jar.
Make small balls and flatten these.
Deep fry to a crisp golden.
Sprinkle dried basil and serve with some ketchup or salsa.

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Thursday, June 25, 2015

Apple Fritters with Chocolate Sauce

BM # 53   Week 4   Day2

Apple fritters are one of the most common fritters but one of the most delicious ones, if served with right accompaniments. I like them with chocolate sauce, but the serving options are many. You could serve with ice cream. Enjoy them with dusted sugar or they taste awesome with custard too. I did not add any sugar to the batter, and so I sprinkled some cinnamon sugar and served with chocolate sauce.
These Apple fritters are for my Day 2 post under Fritters.

Apple Fritters
2 apples
Juice of one lemon
1/2 cup APF
1/4 tsp baking soda
Chilled water for making batter

Cut the apples cross ways into 1 cm-thick rings. Toss with the lemon juice and set aside.
Make a smooth batter with flour , baking soda and chilled water.
Dip the apple rings in batter, a few at a time, until completely coated, shake off excess, then carefully drop into the hot oil.
Cook for 1-2 minutes until golden on one side,, flip them over and fry them till golden
Remove, drain on paper towel then keep warm in a low oven while you fry remaining apple rings.
Dust with icing sugar , I used some cinnamon sugar too and dwith chocolate sauce.

Peeling and coring the apples is a personal choice. Since I do not like to peel them,
I soak the apples in water for a good 2-3 hours, changing water once or twice., but if you are pressed of time, you could peel them and cut.

I did not core the apples as I like proper slices of fritters, I did not want the donut look but you could core them if you wish.

The fritters taste best with Green Apples, since I did not get them , I made these with Red Apples.
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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Spaghetti and Spinach Fritter

BM # 53  Week 4  Day 1

While I was reading about fritters, it was so interesting to know that there are so many different varieties and concepts behind these. Each country has its own version and we have so many different names for them.

Fritters", means a food item, such as a slice of potato, a pineapple ring, an apple ring or chunks, fried in batter. We could use different veggies to make them. In our country we would call them Bhajias, in Sri Lanka, Frikadels!

In the United States, fritters are small cakes made with a primary ingredient that is mixed with an egg and milk batter and either pan-fried or deep-fried; wheat flour, cornmeal, or a mix of the two may be used to bind the batter. "Corn fritters" are often made with whole canned corn and are generally deep-fried. "Apple fritters" are well known, although the American apple fritter is unlike the British one. . Another regional favourite is the "zucchini fritter".

For this week I have chosen to cook Fritters, but as usual Valli put a clause that except for one we should choose them from other countries, so no Bhajias!!
For Day 1 we have Spaghetti and Spinach Fritters.

Spaghetti and Spinach Fritter
1 cup boiled spaghetti
1/2 cup spinach
1/2 cup boiled mashed potatoes
2 cloves garlic , finely chopped
2 green chillies, finely chopped
1/4 cup thick white sauce
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste

Heat a pan with a tsp of oil.
Add garlic , as soon as it turns pink add the chopped chillies and immediately add the spinach.
Add salt and let it wilt.
It shall ooze out water , let that dry up completely.
Switch off the gas and let cool.
Squeeze out any excess water from it.

In a mixing bowl mix the spaghetti, boiled potatoes, spinach, salt and pepper.
Mix well with hands.
Slowly start adding white sauce to this mix.
We have to make sure that the dough does not become very loose.
Pinch out balls from this dough and flatten.
Roll these in bread crumbs and deep fry.
You could bake these if you do not want to deep fry.

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Friday, June 19, 2015

Fruity Salad

BM # 53   Week 3   Day 3

For the third day with the fruit theme for Kids Delight I have another salad. Again a very simple salad , but like I told you yesterday that it is the combination of fruits and vegetables that makes the salad a hit.

For today's salad the ingredients that I used are
Green grapes
Black grapes
Apple, peeled and cubed
Black pepper
Salt to taste

Mix all ingredients and cover with a cling film and chill for at least an hour. The flavours will infuse in an hour and the taste will enhance. You could adjust the quantity of the fruits according to your taste and availability, it really doesn't matter. Remember chilling the salad is a must.

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