Saturday, February 26, 2011

Mustard Greens Dal

Tur Dal / Pigeon peas - 3/4 cup
Mustard Greens - 4 stalks, remove the stem and finely chop the leaves
Mustard Seeds - 1/4 tsp
Curry Leaves - 4
Asafoetida / Hing - 2 pinch
Green Chilli - 2, chopped
Shallot - 1, thinly sliced
Tomato - 1, chopped
Sambar Powder - 2 tsp
Turmeric Powder - a pinch
Water - 2.5 cups
Oil - 1 tbsp

Heat oil in the pressure cooker pan. Temper with mustard seeds, green chilli, curry leaves and hing.

Add the sliced shallot and saute till light brown. Add chopped tomato, mustard greens, sambar powder. Cook for a few minutes.

Now add the tur dal, salt and 2.5 cups of water and cook in the pressure cooker for 10 minutes after full pressure is reached.

Serve with steamed brown rice.

Minestrone Soup

Garlic - 3 pods, thinly sliced
Sweet Onion - 1/2, chopped
Celery - 2 sticks, thinly chopped
Carrot - 1, chopped
Jalapeno - 1/2, finely chopped
Red Bell pepper - 1/2, chopped
Tomato - 2 (big), peeled and chopped
Dried Oregano - 1/4 tsp
Dried Basil - 1/4 tsp
Sugar - 1/2 tsp
Freshly ground Black Pepper
Dried Mixed Beans - 3/4 cup (kidney, pinto, cannelini), soaked overnight
Olive Oil - 1 tbsp
Dried whole wheat pasta - 1/2 cup (optional)

Heat oil in pressure cooker pan. Add garlic and onion. Saute till the onion gets soft.

Add celery, carrots, pepper, jalapeno, tomato, oregano, basil and cook for a few minutes.

Add soaked beans, 4 cups of water, salt, sugar and pepper and cover and cook for 25 minutes after maximum pressure is reached.

Remove pressure, add the pasta(if using) and boil the soup till pasta gets cooked.

Serve with some crusty whole grain bread.

Begun Bhaja

Brinjal - 1 big
Red Chilli Powder
Maida / All Purpore Flour
Peanut Oil for deep frying

Wash the brinjal and pat it dry completely. Cut it sidewise into thick roundels.

Make a dry marination by mixing salt, sugar, turmeric and chilli powder. Appy this mixture to the roundels by pressing well on both sides. Marinate for atleast 10 minutes.

Sprinkle maida on the roundels, press so that the maida sticks to the brinjal and deep fry on medium heat till golden brown on both sides.

Serve with steamed brown rice and masur dal.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Boondi Ladoo

Adapted from

Besan - 2 cups
Water - 2 cups

Sugar - 2 cups
Water - 2 cups
Saffron - a pinch
Cardamom Powder - 1/4 tsp

Ghee - 1 tbsp
Handful of cashewnuts and raisins
Edible Camphor - a pinch

Peanut Oil for deep frying
Ladle with small holes

Heat ghee in a pan. Add the cashews and raisins and fry on low heat for 2 minutes. Add a pinch of edible camphor and cardamom powder and keep aside.

Sift the besan with a flour sifter. Add water slowly and make a batter by mixing simultaneously using a wire whisk. The batter should not be too watery and should be of dosa batter consistency.

Heat oil in a kadai over medium heat. The oil should be sufficiently hot before dropping the batter. This can be tested by putting a drop of batter in the oil. The drop should immediately bubble up.

Now hold the ladle over the kadai and pour some batter on it. The drops of batter will fall on the oil and immediately bubble up. Remove the boondis after 10 seconds. The boondis should not get dark in color and should not be crisp. If a boondi is pressed between 2 fingers, it should get squeezed in and not crumble. Leave the boondis on a paper towel to soak excess oil.

Before frying the next batch of boondis, wipe the ladle completely clean. If the ladle has some batter clinging to it, the next batch of boondis will not be round and they will have an elongated shape. Continue frying like this for the entire batter.

Make a sugar syrup of 2 cups sugar and 2 cups water. Boil till the syrup becomes thick (one thread consistency). Add saffron and some cardamom powder. Add all the fried boondis and fried cashew and raisins to the syrup and mix well. Now put the syrup along with the boondis back on heat for a few minutes till all the syrup is soaked. Leave the mixture to cool down for atleast 15 minutes.

Make small balls of the mixture and press hard as a fist so that the shape holds. Cool down completely and store in an airtight container.

Chana Dal Shammi Kabab

Chana dal - 2 cups
Potato - 1, small
Shallot - 1, chopped
Ginger - 1/2 inch
Garlic - 2 cloves

Cook the above with a little water in the pressure cooker or in a covered pan. The water should be barely enough to cook the dal and potato. When done, the dal should be soft but dry and there shouldnt be too much liquid left.

Cilantro - 1 bunch
Green Chilli - 2
Garam Masala Powder - 1 tsp
Red Chilli Powder - 1/4 tsp
Egg - 1
Oil for shallow fry

Remove and add chopped cilantro, green chilli, garam masala powder, red chilli powder.

Make a paste in the food processor and make small patties of this mixture.

Dip each patty in beaten egg and shallow fry.

Broccoli and Fennel Soup

Broccoli - 2 cups, chopped
Shallot - 1, sliced
Ginger - 1 inch, thinly sliced
Cinnamon Stick - 1
Cloves - 3
Jalapeno - 1, chopped
Olive Oil - 1 tbsp
Crushed Peppercorn
Water or vegetable stock - 4 cups
Fennel - 1 bulb, chopped. Chop the stems and leaves and keep separately.

Heat oil in a pressure cooker pan. Add the cinnamon and cloves. Then add chopped fennel bulb,ginger and jalapeno. Saute for a couple of minutes.

Add chopped fennel stem and leaves, broccoli and salt. Cook till the vegetables start getting soft.

Add stock and bring to a boil. Cook for 15 minutes after full pressure is reached.

Once the pressure is released, blend the soup using a hand blender. Adjust seasoning.

Serve hot with a sprinkle crushed peppercorn on top.

Simple Baby Lettuce Salad

Mixed Baby Lettuce Leaves - 2 cups
Toasted Walnuts - 10
Dried Cranberries - 1 tbsp
Hard Boiled egg - 1, (optional), chopped

For Dressing:
Balsamic Vinegar - 1/2 tbsp
Honey Mustard - 1/2 tbsp
Olive Oil - 1/2 tbsp

In a small bowl, mix vinegar and mustard and whisk in olive oil. Pour over the lettuce leaves (and boiled eggs, if using). Sprinkle walnut and dried cranberries on top. Mix well and serve.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Monday, February 21, 2011

White Beans Soup with Kale

Dried Cannelini Beans - 3/4 cup, soaked overnight
Brown Lentil - 1/4 cup
Kale - 1/2 bunch, chopped along with stems
Yellow Onion - 1/2, diced
Garlic - 3 pods, thinly sliced
Whole black Peppers - 10
Carrots - 1, diced
Chipotle Pepper in Adobo Sauce - 1 pepper along with some sauce, chopped
Tomato - 2, chopped
Olive Oil - 2 tbsp
Roasted Coriander Powder - 1/2 tsp
Roasted Cumin Powder - 1/2 tsp
Homemade Vegetable Stock / Water - 5 cups

Heat oil in the pressure cooker pan. Add garlic, black peppers and onion. Cook till onion gets soft.

Add carrots, kale, tomato, chipotle pepper, salt, coriander and cumin powder.

Cook for a few minutes. Add cannelini beans and brown lentils. Add the stock or water. Bring it to boil.

Close the lid of the pressure cooker and cook for 30 minutes after the pressure is reached.

Add  fresh ground black pepper on top and serve with some crusty whole grain bread.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Hara Bhara Kabab

Adapted from Sanjeev Kapoor's "Khazana of Indian Recipes"

Red Potato - 1, boiled and grated
Baby Spinach - 2 cups
Frozen Green Peas - 1 cup, thawed
Ginger - 1 inch
Green Chillies - 3
Cilantro / Mint - a handful, chopped
Chaat Masala - 1 tsp
Cornstarch - 2 tbsp
Brown Bread - 1 slice (optional)
Oil for shallow frying

Blanch the spinach leaves in boiling water. Remove, sqeeze out water completely and add peas, green chillies, ginger, cilantro, salt and make a paste in the food processor.

Mix with grated potato and chaat masala. Add cornstarch for binding. If the mixture is too wet, crumble and add a slice of brown bread

Divide the mixture into 15 equal balls. Press each ball in between the palms to give a flat tikki shape. Lightly dust with cornflour if required.

Heat oil in an iron skillet. Shallow fry the tikkis till brown on both sides. Serve with tomato ketchup.


Adapted from

Rajma / Dried Red Kidney Beans - 1 cup
Red Onion - 1 big, thinly sliced
Tomato - 2, chopped
Oil - 2 tbsp
Red Chilli Powder - 1 tsp

Add sufficient water to rajma and cook in a pressure cooker for 20 minutes(after the pressure is reached). Remove and tranfer to a skillet.

Heat oil and saute the red onions over low heat till they caramelise. Add chopped tomatoes, chilli powder and salt and cook till mushy. Blend in a blender.

Pour the onion tomato paste over the cooked rajma, add warm water and cover and simmer for 30 minutes till the desired consistency is reached. Serve with steamed brown rice.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Falafel with Green Peas and Edamame

Adapted from

Frozen Peas - 1 cup
Shelled Edamame - 1 cup
Shallot - 1
Garlic - 1 clove
Green Chillies - 2
Fenugreek seeds - 1/4 tsp, powdered
Roasted Fennel Seeds Powder - 1/2 tsp
Roasted Cumin Powder - 1/2 tsp
Roasted Coriander Powder - 1/2 tsp
Red Chilli Powder - 1/4 tsp
Handful of fresh mint leaves
Olive oil - 1 tbsp
Besan / Chickpea Flour - 1/4 cup
Flour - 1 tbsp
Olive oil for shallow frying

Greek Yoghurt - 1 cup
Mint Leaves - a handful
Red Chilli Flakes - 1/4 tsp

Makes around 10 medium sized falafals.

Mix yogurt with finely chopped mint leaves, chilli flakes, salt and sugar. Chill.

Add peas, edamame, spices, shallot, garlic, mint, olive oil, salt into a food processor. Make a smooth paste.

Add chickpea flour and mix well.

Sprinkle some all purpose flour on a plate. Make 10 balls of the peas mixture. Take each ball, slightly press with one hand and make the shape of a small pattie and keep it on the plate. Sprinkle some flour on top of the patties and pat gently.

Heat oil over medium heat in a iron skillet. Once the oil is hot, place a few patties gently in the skillet. Fry until the bottom is dark caramel brown and then carefully flip over. Brown other side, then remove from the pan and drain on paper towel.

Serve in a whole wheat pita bread pocket with some sliced tomato and onion and a spoonful of the yogurt sauce.

Moroccan Carrot Salad

Adapted from

Organic Carrots - 2, grated
lemon - 1 large, sliced into very thin rounds and quartered
Olive Oil - 2 tbsp
Parsley / Cilantro - a handful, chopped
Lightly roasted Pine nuts

Roasted Cumin Powder - 1/4 tsp
Cinnamon Powder - 1/4 tsp
Ginger Powder - 1/4 tsp
Red Chilli Flakes - 1/4 tsp
Orange Zest - 1/2 tsp
Fresh sqeezed Orange Juice - 1 tbsp

Take a big steel skillet. Put the lemon pieces in the skillet and add some olive oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Heat over very low heat until the rinds soften and begin to brown, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle some brown sugar on top and caramelise for 5 minutes more.

Mix the cumin, cinnamon, ginger, chilli flakes, orange zest, orange juice, salt, and pepper. While whisking the dressing, pour the lemon infused olive oil.  Add the carrots and parsley Add the caramelised lemon and mix everything well. Sprinkle pinenuts on top and serve.


Mawa /Khoa - 12 oz / 340gm
Maida / All purpose Flour - 3 heaped tbsp
Baking Soda - 2 pinches
Black Cardamom - 1 pod, seeds separated
Ghee - 1/4 tsp

Sugar - 3 cups
Water - 2 cups
A dash of Green Cardamom powder
Oil / Ghee for deep frying

For making mawa, bring half gallon of milk to boil in a heavy bottomed pan. Reduce flame and let it cook for around 2 hours. Keep stirring in between so that the milk doesnt stick to the bottom of the pan. The milk will gradually thicken, change color and become like a soft dough. Remove and cool. Alternatively, you can use the frozen packed mawa available in Indian stores. Just bring it to room temperature and grate it before using.

Boil sugar, water and cardamom powder and make a thick syrup (just shy of one thread consistency) and keep it warm.

Add baking soda to the maida, mix well and then add to the mawa  mixture. Gently mix together to make a dough. If the dough appears too hard add a splash of water. If it gets too sticky, add some more maida.

Apply a little ghee to the hands and make around 40 medium sized balls from the dough. Put a black seed of cardamom inside each ball.

Heat oil in a kadai over low heat. Gently add around 10 balls. Fry over low heat till they are golden brown. Remove on a paper towel to soak excess oil. Fry the remaining in batches.

Add to the warm sugar syrup and let them soak in the syrup for atleast an hour. Serve warm with a little sugar syrup.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Gajar Halwa / Carrot Fudge

Carrots - 4 to 5 big carrots, grated using the bigger hole in the hand grater
Whole Milk - 5 cups (or for cutting down time use 2 cups milk with 4 tbsp of dry mawa)
Ghee / Clarified Butter - 4 tbsp + 1tbsp
Turbinado / Raw Sugar - 3/4 cup
Cardamom powder - 1/4 tsp or 2 whole cardamoms
Raisins / Sliced Blanched Almonds / Cashewnuts - a handful

Heat milk in a heavy bottomed pan and bring to a boil. Then lower the flame, and let the milk reduce and become very thick almost one fourth of the original quantity. Keep aside. Alternatively, if you don't have time to reduce milk, you can use 2 cups of whole milk mixed with 4 tbsp. of dry mawa or milk powder.

Heat a little ghee in a heavy bottomed pan. Add the nuts and fry on low heat for a minute. Remove. In the same pan, add some more ghee and the grated carrots. If using whole cardamoms, add now. Saute for a few minutes till the carrot becomes slightly soft and changes color.

Then add the thickened milk and cook the mixture on medium low fire (stirring occasionally) till the milk is almost absorbed.

Add the sugar and cardamom powder and cook till all the liquid is absorbed, the halwa is dryish and starts to release ghee. If required, you can mix one more tbsp. of ghee at this point.

Remove from heat and mix in the raisins and nuts. Serve slightly warm.

Makke Ki Roti

Adapted from

Cornmeal - 13/4 cup
Whole Wheat Flour - 3/4 cup
Ajwain - 1/4 tsp
Red Chilli Powder - 1/2 tsp
Hot Water
Oil - 1 tsp
Flour to roll rotis

Mix the dry ingredients together. Add the hot water and knead well to make a soft dough. Apply oil to the dough, cover with a wet cloth and keep aside for 15 minutes.

Divide the dough onto 8 balls, dust with flour and roll the balls into medium sized rotis.

Cook the rotis on a hot skillet on both sides. Apply a little ghee, cook for a few seconds more.

Serve with Sarson ka Saag.

Sarson ka Saag / Mustard Greens

Adapted from

Organic Mustard Greens - 1 bunch,
Organic Baby Spinach - 6 oz / 2 cups packed
Oil - 2 tbsp
Garlic Pods - 5 big, finely grated
Ginger - 1 inch, finely grated
Green Chillies - 4, finely chopped
Kasturi Methi - 2 tsp
Cornmeal - 2 tsp

Wash and chop the mustard greens. Along with baby spinach add to a cup of boiling water and cook for 5 minutes.

Remove from water and cool. Blend to a fine paste and keep aside.

Take a heavy bottomed pan and heat oil on a low flame. Add the grated garlic and saute on low flame till it  browns slightly. Add the grated ginger and green chillies and cook for a couple of minutes more.

Add the mustard greens spinach paste, salt, sugar, kasturi methi, a little water. Bring it to boil. Add the cormeal and cook till the gravy reaches thick consistency.

Add a little ghee or butter on top and serve with Makke ki Roti.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Pressure Cooker Stew

Chicken / Lamb (with bones)  - 2 lbs, cut into medium sized pieces
Olive Oil - 1/2 tbsp.
Onion - 2 small, chopped
Tomato - 2, chopped
Ginger - 1 inch piece, julienned
Garlic - 4 cloves, sliced
Cinnamon - 1 inch stick
Cardamom - 2 pods
Cloves - 5
Bay leaf - 2
Whole Black Peppercorns - 10
Water - 2 to 3 cups

Optional : A handful of cubed potatoes, carrots, green beans, green papaya
                 1 tbsp. butter

Put everything together in a pressure cooker and cook on high till full pressure is reached. Then reduce the heat and cook for 15 minutes more.

Remove from heat, discard the bay leaf, check the seasoning, add a dollop of butter and serve.