Potato and Green Peas stuffed balls

Potato and green peas balls

  • Servings: 10 balls
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  1. All-purpose flour- 2 cups
  2. Butter- ½ cup
  3. Potato- 2, mashed
  4. Cooked green peas- 1 cup
  5. Coriander powder- 2 tsp
  6. Red Chilli powder- 2 tsp
  7. Turmeric powder- ½ tsp
  8. Amchur powder- 1 tsp
  9. Cumin seeds- 1 tsp
  10. Carom seeds- 1 tsp
  11. Salt- as per taste

Directions

Step One

Heat a pan on medium heat, add 2 tsp of butter. Once the butter melts, add the cumin seeds and carom seeds. Let the seeds splutter, then add the coriander powder, chilli powder and turmeric powder. Saute the spices.

Step Two

Now, add the mashed potatoes and green peas. Season with some salt. Add the amchur powder. Mix well and set the mixture aside for cooling.

Step Three

In a separate bowl, take the flour, salt (as per taste) and butter. Mix it well till you get a breadcrumbs like texture. Add water and knead the dough. Set aside.

Step Four

Make small balls of the dough. Flatten it with your fingertips into medium sized discs. Place the stuffing in the center and bring the edge together to form the balls. Pinch off the excess dough. Now, slightly flatten these balls and set aside.

Step Five

In a separate pan, heat oil. Once the oil is hot, deep fry the balls and allow them to puff up. Remove the fried balls and place on a tissue paper upon browning.

Serve with tamarind chutney.

Alternatively, you can convert it into a chaat, by topping each balls with tamarind chutney, curd, chopped onions, coriander leaves and some chaat masala. Enjoy!

 

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Sweet Corn Potato Kababs!

Corn and Potato Kabab

  • Servings: 12 Kababs
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  1. Sweet Corn Kernels- 1 cup
  2. Potatoes- 2
  3. Finely chopped onion- ½ cup
  4. Finely chopped capsicum- ½ cup
  5. Finely chopped green chilli- 2
  6. Finely chopped coriander leaves- 2 tbsp
  7. Ginger paste- 1 tbsp
  8. Red chili powder- 1 tbsp
  9. Turmeric powder- ¼ tsp
  10. Pepper powder- ¼ tsp
  11. Garam masala powder- ½ tsp
  12. Chaat masala- 2 tsp
  13. Bread crumbs- ¼ cup
  14. Chickpea flour- 1 tbsp
  15. Corn flour- 2 tbsp
  16. Lemon juice- 1 tbsp
  17. Salt to taste
  18. Oil

Directions

Step One

In a vessel, take the sweet corn and boil it for about 15 mins. Season with salt. Once cooked, keep it aside to cool. After the corn kernels have cooled, keep aside 2 tbsp of kernels and roughly mash the remaining kernels.

Step Two

Simultaneously, boil the potatoes in a pressure cooker, for upto three whistles or until cooked. Peel the skin, mash the potatoes and keep aside.

Step Three

Now in a mixing bowl, mix the mashed corn, potatoes, onions, capsicum, coriander leaves and ginger paste. Squeeze half a lemon. Add chilli powder, turmeric powder, pepper powder, garam masala and chaat masala. Add bread crumbs, chickpeas flour and corn flour. Season with salt. Combine well and check the consistency.

Tip: If the mixture is very runny, add more corn flour to make it tight.

Step Four

Make small cylinders of the well combined mixture and flatten it lightly on greased palms.

Step Five

Deep fry the kababs on medium heat in hot oil.

Serve with some green chutney and onion slices.

 

Simple Choco-chip cookies: Soft & Fluffy

The cookie fever seems to have kicked in me. Baking cookies has been so much fun. What could be better than trying out versions of the world’s famous cookie- the choco-chip cookie? These cookies are both thick and chewy and to obtain this texture, the quantity of butter should be less than otherwise.

I have to be honest, I ended up making this recipe when my original plan for thin, crisp cookies failed. But so what? Mr. A loved what was right on his snack plate with tea.

The best part about this recipe: Don’t have to wash several bowls, spoons and cups and the working counter.

Simple Choco-chip cookies: Soft & Fluffy

  • Servings: 32 cookies
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  1. All-purpose flour- 2 ¼ cups
  2. Salt- ¾ tsp
  3. Baking soda- 1 tsp
  4. Butter- ½ cup
  5. White sugar- 1 cup
  6. Light brown sugar- ½ cup
  7. Vanilla extract- 3 drops
  8. Milk- 2 tbsp
  9. 1 large egg
  10. Semisweet chocolate chips- 1½ cup

Directions

Step One

In a mixing bowl, add butter, white sugar and brown sugar, and cream together until it’s light and fluffy. You can either use an electric blender on medium speed or just use a whisk. Once you get a fluffy mixture, add the egg and 3 drops of vanilla extract, mix thoroughly. Lightly whisk the flour, baking soda and salt. Then, add the chocolate chips and incorporate it into the dough.

Tip: Be sure that the butter is at room temp, and very, very soft.

2.  If you want your cookie to be more chewy adjust the brown sugar which contains molasses, as per your requirement.

3.  Do not use baking powder instead of baking soda, as it would only puff the cookies; baking soda would help to spread the cookie dough.

4. After adding the flour, do not over whisk the cookie mixture as it would toughen the cookie by developing gluten. It is sufficient to lightly whisk and incorporate all ingredients into the mixture.

Step Two

Once the mixture is ready, refrigerate it for atleast an hour.

Tip: Make sure to refrigerate as it is really difficult to work with very soft cookie dough.

Step Three

Using an ice cream scooper (for a perfectly portioned, even sized cookie), take a “tablespoon of the dough”  in a round shape and drop it onto the baking sheets. At this stage we only need small dough balls as they will fluff into a bigger size later. Place each cookie dough at least 2 inches apart on a tray lined with parchment paper.

Step Four

Bake the cookies at 180°C for 15-18 minutes, until golden brown. Cool the cookies on the sheets completely. Once they have been cooled, store in an airtight container at room temperature for a week. Any excess dough can also be wrapped in plastic wrap, placed in a freezer bag and frozen for some more time.

Dunk into milk and enjoy the cookies.

Steamed Chicken Dumplings

Whats up people!!!! Its been long since my last post. Small hiatus but more on that later. Its Springtime!!  Wanna try a new evening snack rather than the usual ones? Time to get my hands on some Chicken dumplings – expensive restaurant dish, eh? Make these famous Tibetan street-food snack at home. I am completely reminded of my Bangalore days, every nook and corner of the city had a “Momo stall”. These dumplings can also be deep fried or steamed and then fried.

Soft outer covering with moist and juicy filling make these irresistible. Try these super easy to make chicken dumplings.

Alert: The recipes published on this blog come with a “Print” option on the upper -right corner of the recipe box to make it easier to tear away the recipe – print it- and use it conveniently while cooking. No Electronic hassles in your kitchen..!!

Steamed Chicken Dumplings

  • Servings: 16 dumplings
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  1. Boneless Chicken breast or thigh- 250 gm
  2. Finely chopped medium sized onion- 1 cup
  3. Chopped spring onion- ¼ cup
  4. Finely chopped Coriander leaves- 2 Tbsp
  5. Ginger garlic paste- 1 Tbsp
  6. Crushed black pepper- ½ Tsp
  7. Oil- 1 Tsp
  8. Maida/ plain flour- 3 cups
  9. Water- as required
  10. Salt to taste

Directions

Step One

To make the dough for the outer covering, combine flour, salt and water in a bowl. Knead until smooth and soft, then cover with a damp cotton towel and allow to rest while the filling is being prepared.

Step Two

Take the boneless chicken pieces and grind them to get a minced chicken. Once that is done, take a bowl, add the minced chicken, onion, coriander leaves, ginger-garlic paste, and oil. Season with pepper and salt. Mix it well to make a well combined mixture.

Step Three

Place a large steamer on to boil and line the steamer tray with a disc of lightly greased baking paper.

Step Four

Take the dough and roll it into a log on your work surface, then cut it into 16 even pieces. While working with one piece of dough at a time, keep the rest covered with the damp towel to prevent drying out. Shape the small dough pieces into a ball, then roll out on a lightly floured surface into small, very thin circular disks. Repeat the same for all 16 circular disks.

Tip: Light flour the disks to avoid sticking to each other.

Step Five

Place a generous teaspoon of the filling in the center and enclose the filling. Take the circular disk in one hand and use the thumb and forefinger to enclose the filling by gathering the edges of the dough and pleating to stick them together. Make sure the filling stays in the middle, away from the edges.

Tip: Leave a small opening in the center to allow the steam to enter and cook the chicken.

Step Six

Place directly into the well greased steamer tray, seam-side up. Repeat with the remaining disks and filling. Once they are all done, place the dumplings in the steamer, cover and steam for 15-20 minutes or until the dough is no longer sticky.

Serve with Chings Schezwan Sauce.

Refreshing Salad with Chicken & Avocado

Chicken Avocado Pasta salad in Thousand Island Dressing

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  1. Rotini Pasta- 1 cup
  2. Cubed Chicken Breast- 1 cup
  3. Cubed Avocado- 1 cup
  4. Diced Cucumber- 2 cups
  5. Chopped Romaine Lettuce- 1 cup
  6. Corn Kernels- ½ cup
  7. Thinly Sliced Onions- ¼ cup
  8. Sliced Tomatoes- 1 cup
  9. Sliced black olives- ¼ cup
  10. Thousand Island Dressing- 2 tbsp
  11. Olive oil- 3 tbsp
  12. Salt- as per taste
  13. Pepper- as per taste

Directions

Step One

Boil and cook the pasta in 2-3 cups of water in a vessel on medium heat. Once the pasta is half cooked, add salt and allow the pasta to cook completely. Transfer the cooked pasta to a colander and drain the water. Keep aside to cool.

Step Two

In a separate pan, add 2 tsp of olive oil and cook the cubed chicken breast for about 10- 15 mins on medium heat. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from pan and keep aside to cool.

Step Three

Simultaneously, in a vessel, boil the corn kernels for about 15 mins. Once it is cooked, remove and keep aside to cool.

Step Four

In a big salad bowl, mix the cucumber, lettuce, onions, tomatoes, avocados, olives, cooked corn, cooked chicken and pasta. Drizzle with some olive oil. Season with salt and then, add the Thousand Island dressing. Gently mix the salad.

Enjoy a light refreshing dinner.

Chicken in buttery masala

Butter Chicken

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Medium
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Ingredients

  1. Boneless chicken breast- 400 gms
  2. Onion- 1 cup
  3. Tomatoes- 1 cup
  4. Ginger garlic paste- 1 tbsp
  5. Cashew nut paste- ½ cup
  6. Chilli powder- 1 tbsp
  7. Turmeric powder- ¼ tsp
  8. Garam masala- ½ tsp
  9. Butter- ½ cup
  10. Cream- ½ cup
  11. Water- 1 cup
  12. Oil- 1 tsp
  13. Salt- as per taste

For marination

  1. Ginger garlic paste- 1 tbsp
  2. Chilli powder- 1 tbsp
  3. Turmeric powder- ½ tsp
  4. Curd- 1 tbsp

Directions

Step One

Clean the boneless chicken breast pieces well and cut into small cubes. Pat dry with a kitchen towel. Place the cubes in a bowl. Add ginger garlic paste, chilli powder, turmeric powder, curd and salt. Massage the chicken pieces well. Keep aside for atleast 1 hour.

Step Two

After an hour, place the chicken pieces in a greased baking dish. Drizzle some oil and grill it for about 18 minutes at 200°C. Once grilled, keep it aside.

Step Three

Simultaneously, in a pan, heat some oil and melt 1 tbsp butter on medium heat. Add and brown the chopped onions. Season with salt. Add ginger garlic paste and cook till the raw smell disappears. Then, add Chilli powder, turmeric powder and garam masala. Add the tomatoes and cook till the tomatoes are soft and mushy. Keep aside to cool. Once cool, grind the mixture into a smooth paste.

Step Four

Grind some cashew nuts in 2 tbsp water.  Add this cashew nut paste, along with ½ cup water to the curry. On simmer, allow the mixture to come to a boil.

Step Five

Add the grilled chicken pieces to the curry, along with the remaining butter. Allow the masala to coat the chicken well.

Step Six

Switch off the flame. Once the curry cools down a bit, then add some cream. Garnish with more cream and a dallop of butter.

 

Tip: 1. Garam Masala is basically a mixture of ground spices such as cumin, coriander and cardamom used in Indian cooking. These spices are usually toasted and then ground in order to bring out more flavor and aroma. “Garam” translates into “hot”, however this mixture need not necessarily be hot or spicy. You need not make it. It can be purchased off the shelf at major supermarkets selling Indian spices and food-stuff.

 

Juicy lamb ribs..!

Simple Lamb ribs in BBQ sauce

  • Servings: 1-2
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  1. Lamb ribs- 6-8 pieces
  2. BBQ Sauce- 1 cup
  3. Salt- as per taste
  4. Pepper- as per taste
  5. Mashed Potatoes

Directions

Step One

Clean the lamb ribs well and pat dry with a kitchen towel. Season the lamb ribs with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a grilling pan over medium-high heat. Place the ribs carefully in the pan. Sear until the ribs are deep brown on all sides.

Step Two

Now drizzle the bbq sauce over the ribs and glaze for 5 minutes on medium low heat. Continuously baste the ribs with the bbq sauce and remaining juices.

Step Three

Serve with mashed potatoes and greens of your choice.

Enjoy a relaxed weekend dinner.

 

Eggs, Cheese and Veggies!

“Frittatas” are usually an oven-baked dish, but I discovered that there is an easy way to make Frittatas without having to use my oven. Simply cook it on a pan on medium-low heat with a lid on. This got me excited about making Frittatas, a heavy breakfast dish; and you can easily skip your lunch..!

Easy Pan-Frittata with Cheddar and Veggies

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  1. Egg- 6
  2. Milk- ½ cup
  3. Finely chopped capsicum- ½ cup
  4. Sweet Corn kernels – ½ cup
  5. Finely chopped green chilli- 1 tbsp
  6. Finely chopped spring onion- ½ cup
  7. Grated Cheddar Cheese- ½ cup
  8. Parmesan- ¼ cup
  9. Ground meat- 1 cup
  10. Chilli flakes- 1 tbsp
  11. Salt- as per taste
  12. Pepper- as per taste

Directions

Step One

Cook the ground meat in a skillet over medium heat for about 10 minutes or until it is brown. Season with salt and pepper. When the meat is cooked, remove it from the pan, drain on paper towels to remove excess fat. Set aside the mixture to cool.

Step Two

Simultaneously, in a separate vessel, cook the sweet corn kernels for 15 mins and keep aside.

Step Three

In a glass or ceramic mixing bowl, thoroughly beat the eggs. Add the milk and stir until combined well. Now, season with salt and pepper to taste.

Step Four

Add the cooked meat, chopped capsicum, green chilli, spring onion, sweet corn kernels and chilli flakes into the mixing bowl. Add cheddar and Parmesan cheese and stir the entire mixture well.

Step Five

Pour the entire mixture into a non-stick pan, cover and cook over medium-low heat for about 10 to 15 minutes. The final product would look and feel like a

Slice and Serve. Enjoy a sumptuous and nutritious breakfast.

Tip: 1. Use a fork to check if the egg mixture has cooked.

2. Getting the Frittata out of the pan without breaking it would be a challenge as the weight of the whole dish is considerable. Take a spatula and slowly run it across the edges / circumference of the pan. Use caution and dexterity to slowly slide it into a plate.

 

Vegetarian Mexican delight..!

Guacamole

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Very Easy
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If there is one thing that Mr. A loves and can dish out personally, then it has to be that One-mean-Guacamole..!! He makes it sound like rocket science but going through our recipe here, you would realize that it is child’s play. Excellent as an evening dish. Completely vegetarian and easy to prepare. Traditionally used as a dip (along-with Nachos), you may just go ahead and eat it all out if you don’t have chips.

Ingredients

  1. Avocados – 2
  2. Green Chillies – 1
  3. Chopped Onion- 1 medium sized – required half
  4. Tomato – 1 medium size – required 3/4ths
  5. Coriander (Cilantro) – One fistful
  6. Lemon – Half
  7. Salt

Directions

Step One

Wash the avocados and scoop out the fruit into a steel or glass bowl. Discard the seed. Steel or glass bowl – because we need to mash the fruit with a masher or spoon and you don’t want to spoil or leave scratches on your non-stick or ceramic vessels.

Tip:

(a) Picking out Avocados can be tricky. In order to prepare a Guacamole, we need the fruit to be slightly ripe. Extra-ripe means the fruit has already darkened and softened beyond our taste and Under-ripe means that the fruit is very hard inside and we wouldn’t be able to scoop it out  completely. It wouldn’t even mash well. Picking the right fruit comes with experience of picking it several times. So don’t fret if you get it wrong the first time. The Avocado needs to press slightly when you buy it from the market.

(b) After scooping out the fruit do not leave it open for too long as Avocados have a tendency to darken when kept in the open just like Apples. The oxidation turns it brown. Hence we need to be quick here.

(c) Choice of Avocados is really important. I have personally experienced that Mexican or American Avocados taste better than the Kenyan or Ugandan ones. However, the former are thrice as expensive than the latter. 

Step Two

Mash the Avocados until they are slightly chunky. Do not over-mash them into a smooth pulp.

Step Three

(a) Take the Onion – half as suggested in the ingredient list and chop it finely. Do not leave big chunks.

(b) Similarly Chop 3/4th of  a Tomato into a similar size. Make sure of discarding/ draining the liquid and the seedy part of the tomato away.

(c) Take a fistful of Coriander and chop them into tiny pieces as well.

(d) Cut the single green chilli into tiny pieces.

Step Four

Empty the chopped Ingredients into the bowl where we have kept the Mashed avocados ready. Mix well to ensure consistency of the chopped ingredients spread all over the mashed avocados.

Step Five

Squeeze the juice out of half of the lemon into the mixture. This splash of acidity balances the richness of the Avocado.

Step Six

This is important. Avocados are bland. It doesn’t have a heavy flavor unlike all other fruits and in addition it is pretty heavy/rich. Hence, we need to supplement it with a good dose of salt. This could be more than what we use for preparing other foodstuffs and at the same time different people would have different tastes.

My suggestion would be to sprinkle a full tea-spoon of salt > Mix the mixture well > Taste it > Add more salt if you cannot taste the salt yet > Stop when you are satisfied.

Step Seven

Serve with some Nacho chips. If not, take that spoon and dig in..!

Tip:

(a) The most important aspect in preparing a Guacamole is “Ratio”. If any of the ingredients increases then it may result in a lop-sided flavor. So make sure that you don’t add extra tomatoes/onions/lemon juice or chillies. It HAS TO be just right. 

(b) One Avocado serves one person.

A south Indian shrimp recipe..!

Mangalorean Prawns Gassi

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Medium
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The south of India is well-known for its natural beauty and for the abundant availability of coconut plantations, especially having long coastlines. Needless to say coconut in its various forms like oil, milk, fresh and dried form is put to excellent use in its cuisine. The Manglorean Prawns Gassi is a recipe from the south of India which encompasses two important aspects of the region – Coconut and Sea-food! Since the months of August and September are the ones when the best shrimps are found here in the Middle East, I decided to make this curry with the best quality Raw materials available for the season.

Ingredients

  1. Prawns (de-veined and shelled)- 500 gms
  2. Cubed Potato- 1 cup
  3. Chopped Onion- 1 medium sized
  4. Coconut milk- ½ cup [1 tbsp of maggi coconut milk powder dissolved in water]
  5. Mustard Seeds- 1 tsp
  6. Oil- 1 tbsp
  7. Water
  8. Salt

For the masala paste:

  1. Coconut- 1 cup
  2. Ginger-garlic paste- 2 tbsp
  3. Onion- ½ cup
  4. Green chilli- 2
  5. Tamarind- small sized ball
  6. Red Chilli powder- 1tsp
  7. Coriander powder- 1 tsp
  8. Turmeric powder- ½ tsp

Directions

Step One

The first step would be to clean the prawns; remove the shell and de-vein them. Wash well for about 7 to 8 times.

Tip: Squeeze some lemon juice on the prawns and keep it aside to reduce the smell. Cleaning prawns calls for caution. For those who are doing this for the first time need to know that de-veining the prawns, removing the shells releases a smell that lingers in your kitchen and hands which you want to avoid. So make sure that you clean well and dispose the waste as soon as possible. 

Step Two

Grind the masala paste using coconut, onion, ginger-garlic paste, green chillies, tamarind, red chilli powder, coriander powder and turmeric powder, with a little water to form a smooth paste. Keep aside.

Step Three

In a medium sized non-stick pot, take a spoon of oil. Once the oil is hot, add the mustard seeds and allow it to splutter on medium heat. Then add the chopped onions and season with salt. Once the onion is golden brown, add the cubed potatoes and saute till it changes color. Add in the ground masala paste and allow it to cook. Simmer till the gravy starts to bubble and thicken.

Step Four

Add the clean prawns and some salt, as per taste. Add ½ cup of water and allow the prawns to cook for about 15 to 20 mins.

Step Five

Reduce the flame and now add ½ cup of coconut milk.

Tip: Coconut milk is likely to curdle/ split on high heat, so keep the flame low.

Step Six

Serve with some Jeera rice or plain rice or appams.