Monday, January 30, 2012

Naranga Achar/Lemon Pickle


Naranga Achar/Lemon Pickle

This recipe is for those who love pickles like me and who have nostalgic feelings about home made,spicy,tangy and intensely lemony pickle.I am sure that most Indians will agree that pickles are inevitable part of our lunch.

This pickle is made by stuffing the spices into whole lemons, the way it is made by my grandmother and aunts. But you can also quarter the lemons if you plan to use it immediately.This lemon pickle can be preserved for months in air tight jars and the more it matures the better. Lemon pickle are best when served with rice and curd, spiced buttermilk or parippu curry/dal. It is also an integral part of Kerala Sadhya and is served as thoducurry along with mango and ginger pickle.

Ingredients
Lemon -10( medium sized)
Salt- 5 tsp
Turmeric powder- 1/3 tsp
Chilly powder-4 tbs
( add according to your taste)
Fenugreek powder- 1 tbs
Asafoetida- 1 tsp
Green chilly chopped -3
Garlic pods 8-10
Ginger- 1 inch thick
Curry leaves- 1 spring
Sesame oil- 1/3 cup
Vinegar-1/3 cup


Wash lemons and wipe them completely dry. Heat 1/3 cup of oil in a deep pan and when it is hot carefully slide in the whole lemons and gently fry them till skin becomes soft and tender. It will also changes and shades will appear on the lemon. Drain the lemons from the oil and keep aside.

Note : If you are quartering the lemons do not fry in oil. It will start oozing out water. So if you doing this process add only about two tsp of oil.
If you wish to avoid this frying process, you can steam it till the skin becomes soft or just cut lemons and sprinkle salt and keep in air tight container for one or two days before making pickle and follow the next step
.
Step 2: Heat the same oil in which you fried lemon. Add chopped garlic, green chilly, ginger and curry leaves and saute till the raw flavor disappears. Switch off the flame and add the dry ingredients- chilly powder, turmeric powder, salt, fenugreek powder and asafoetida and mix well. Put this back in low flame and stir for just a few seconds. Allow this to cool a bit.

Step 3:Take half of the masala and mix with vinegar and keep aside.
With the rest stuff the lemons.Take each lemon and slit open. Do not cut it all the way through.With a spoon take little of the masala and stuff into the lemon. Repeat the same process with all the lemons. Now pour over the top of the lemons the vinegar spice mixture. Allow this to cool down completely before transferring into dry air tight containers.


Try this..
Hope you will all enjoy

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Baked Tilapia with Mint Mayo Marinade


Baked Tilapia with Mint Mayo Marinade

This is a simple baked fish with lemon and herb blend as seasoning along with a spread of mayo.Mayonnaise used in this recipe is flavored with minced garlic and mint.The fish I have used here is  Tilapia and is a perfect fish for baking.I tried the same recipe with trout and catfish. But this one is my favorite.If you do not like lemon mint flavor you can try other herbs like parsley or thyme.

Ingredients
Tilapia fillets-2
Lemon Pepper seasoning- 1/3 tsp
( it is a combination of lemon,pepper, celery seeds and garlic)
Chilly powder- 1/3 tsp
Salt to taste
All Purpose flour-1/3 cup
(to coat the fish)

Fresh mint leaves chopped- 2 tsp
Garlic paste- 2 clove
Mayonnaise - 2 tsp
lemon zest- a pinch



Wash and clean tilapia fillets. Wipe off the extra moisture. Drizzle a few drops of oil on the fish and rub it on top of the fish.Mix lemon pepper seasoning, chilly powder and salt and rub on the fish. Allow the fish to marinate for five minutes.In a plate spread flour and coat both sides of fish with flour.

Pre heat oven to 350 degree. Grease baking dish with a few drops of oil. Place the marinated fish leaving a little space between the two. Meanwhile whisk mayonnaise, garlic, lemon zest and chopped mint. Spread a thin layer of this mixture on top of the fish. Bake for 15 minutes till the crust changes color and the fish flakes with a fork and is opaque.

Try this..
Hope you will all enjoy

Friday, January 20, 2012

Rava Vada


Rava Vada
Today's recipe is an instant tea time snack. It is deep fried fitters made with semolina/sooji

Ingredients
Rava- 1 cup
Rice flour- 1 tbs
Shallots sliced- 4-5
Yogurt-1 tsp
Ginger chopped- 1 tsp
Green chilly- 2
Curry leaves chopped- a few
Salt to taste
Oil for frying


Soak one cup of Rava/semolina  in two cups of water for about half an hour. After half an hour strain and squeeze out the excess water using a cheese cloth. Add chopped green chilly, curry leaves, shallots,ginger and one tsp of thick yogurt. Mix in the rice flour. You can also add a pinch of baking powder at this stage. Heat oil in a pan. Wet your hands with water and make small patties. Carefully drop then in oil and fry till both sides become golden brown. It takes more time than ordinary vada to get browned up. Serve with ketchup or chutney.

Try this..
Hope you will all enjoy

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Cheerathandu Mooru Curry



Cheerathandu Mooru Curry

Today's recipe is very simple mooru curry/charu curry that is common accompaniment for rice in every Malayali household. This curry is spiced buttermilk with cheera thandu/red amaranth stem/Chinese spinach stems. Cheera ila or spinach leaves is usually made as thoran/stir fried with coconut. The stems are never thrown away and the have a wonderful flavor when used in sambar, aviyal or mooru curry.


Ingredients
Spinach stem/Cheera Thandu-2 hand full
Yogurt- 1 1/2 cup
Coconut- 1/3 cup
Ginger- 1/2 inch peice
Green chilly- 4-5
Garlic-2 pods
Cumin- 1/2 tsp

For seasoning
Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
Fenugreek seeds( uluva)- 1/3 tsp
Pearl onion chopped-1
Dry read chilly- 2
Curry leaves- 1 spring


Remove all the leaves from the stem and slightly peel out the skin and the thicker parts of the stem and make it even.Cut this into 2 inch long pieces. If the stem is too thick cut it down through the center and make it into two pieces. In a heavy bottom pan add this along with salt and sprinkle a little water( not more that one 1/4 cup). Cover and cook till the stem is soft and tender.
Make a fine paste of coconut, cumin,shallots, ginger,green chilly and garlic. Whisk yogurt and blend this with the coconut mixture.
Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds. When they splutter add sliced shallots, dry red chilly and curry leaves. Saute till they get roasted and change color and add the cooked spinach stems and saute for one minute. Switch off the flame and after a few seconds pour in the yogurt coconut mixture. Keep mixing and slowly simmer in low flames till the curry gets warmed up and the raw flavor disappears. Do not allow it to boil. Close with a tight lid till it is ready to be served.

Note: You can follow the same recipe to make regular mooru curry or Kerala spiced buttermilk curry. You can make it without adding any vegetables or can substitute cheer thandu/ or spinach stems with cucumber or ash gourd.

Sending this to Kaveri's event Kerala Kitchen

Try this,
Hope you will all enjoy.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Spicy Pomegranate Chicken


Spicy Pomegranate Chicken

This recipe is inspired by the Persian pomegranate chicken stew,Fesengen, which is chicken or duck cooked in a rich sauce of walnut paste and pomegranate molasses. This curry has an Indian touch.Pomegranate juice is readily available in supermarkets or you can squeeze your own from fresh pomegranate. Here I have used the fresh ones. The sauce is sweet and slightly tart and is a really satisfying dish and the flavors is exotic.

Ingredients
Chicken- 1 1/2 lb
Onions finely chopped- 2 medium
Garlic cloves-6-8
Potato- 1 small (optional)
Green chilly finely chopped-2
Turmeric powder-a pinch
Chilly powder- 1/2
Coriander powder-3/4 tsp
salt and pepper to taste

Pomegranate juice- 3/4 cup
Sugar- 2 tsp
Lemon juice- a few drops

Walnut roasted and powdered- 2 tbs
Cinnamon powder- 1/2 tsp
Nutmeg powder- 1/3 tsp
Cardamon powder- 1/3 tsp
Coriander leaves for garnish




Clean chicken and remove the skin. Pat dry and marinate with turmeric powder, chilly powder, coriander powder, salt and pepper and keep aside for half an hour.

In a saucepan mix pomegranate juice and sugar and bring it to a boil. Reduce flame and allow to simmer and thicken a bit. Add a few drops of lemon juice and keep aside.( You can use pomegranate molasses or just add the juice without boiling to the curry)

Roast walnut in a low flame for 2-3 minutes and using a mixer blend into a coarse powder. ( You can add more of this if you like up-to half cup to make the curry richer and creamier)

Heat oil in a pan and  add onions and saute till golden brown. Add chopped garlic, chilly and after a minute add the marinated chicken along with potatoes( if you are adding) and stir and fry till the chicken changes color and the masala is well coated. Add the roasted walnut powder and the spices- cardamon,cinnamon and nutmeg and the pomegranate juice. Cover and cook till the meat is tender. Garnish with coriander leaves.

Try this
Hope you will all enjoy.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Mushroom Biryani


Mushroom Biryani

 Mushroom biryani is a quick fix and will be loved by biryani lovers,both vegetarians and non- vegetarian.I tried this a few days back and is simple and delicious. If you like mushrooms you must try this.

Ingredients
Basmathi Rice- 2 cup
Cinnamon stick- 1 inch thick
Clove 2
Cardomon-2
Star aniseed-1
Rose water- 1 tsp(optional)
Salt to taste

For the masala
Mushroom- 10 oz
Onion- 1 finely chopped
Ginger garlic paste- 1 tsp
Green chilly paste- 1/2 tsp
Tomato- one small
Turmeric powder- 1/3 tsp
Chilly powder- 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder- 1 tsp
Fennel powder- 1/2 tsp
Pepper powder- 1/3 tsp
Garam masala- 3/4 tsp
Lemon Juice- 1 lemon

To garnish
Onion thinly sliced-1
( to fry)
Coriander leaves- a hand full
Saffron - a pinch soaked in 1/3 cup of milk
Ghee- 1 tsp
Cardamon and Cinnamon powder- 1/3 tsp each



Thinly slice one onion and fry till nice and crispy and keep aside. Fry raisins and cashew nuts and set aside.

Bring about one and half liter of water to boil and add whole spices and washed rice and salt. Cook till rice is done and strain and spread on a flat tray. Pour rose water over it and allow to cool.

Wash and wipe dry mushrooms dry and cut it into half. Marinated with chilly powder and turmeric powder for five minutes. Meanwhile heat oil in a pan and saute one chopped onion till golden brown. Add green chilly  and ginger garlic paste and saute till raw flavors disappear. Next goes in chopped tomatoes and saute till soft and cooked.Add mushrooms and stir fry in medium flame for two to three minutes. Add coriander powder, pepper powder, garam masala and fennel powder and saute till raw flavor disappears. Cover and cook for one more minute. Finally squeeze lemon juice on top.

Layer half of the mushroom masala and add half of the rice on top. Sprinkle fried onions,coriander leaves and half of the cardamon powder and cinnamon powder. Put the second layer of masala and rice and finally the rest of garnishes. Pour melted ghee on top and soaked saffron and milk. If you feel that the masala is really dry add 1/3 cup of extra milk. Cover with a tight lid on top and put some weight on top. Put flame in low and heat it for 5-6 minutes. Serve warm with papad, salad or pickle.


Try this..
Hope you will all enjoy

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Chole Bhature


Chole Bhature

Happy New Year to all my friends and readers...

Today's recipe is a popular breakfast recipe from Punjab- Chole/chickpeas curry and bhature. Bhature is a deep fried and puffed up bread made of white flour. If you like a spicy and warm breakfast nothing is more comforting than this combo.

Ingredients
For the Chole masala
Chickpeas/garbanzo beans- 1 cup
Dried mango- 2 to 3 pieces
Dried Amla/gooseberry/nellikka-2 -3 pieces(optional)
Tea bag- 1
Bay Leaf- 1
Salt to taste

For the gravy
Onion- 2 medium
Tomato puree- 3/4 cup
Ginger- 1 inch thick
Green chilly-2
Chilly powder- 1 tsp
Amchur powder- 1/3 tsp
Anardhana/pomegranate seeds powdered- 1/3 tsp
Coriander powder- 1 tsp
Garam masala- 1/2 tsp
Ginger powder- 1/3 tsp
Roasted cumin powder- 1/2 tsp
Nutmeg- a pinch

Whole garam masala 
Green cardomon-2
Cinnamon- 1 inch stick
Clove- 2-3
Black Cardamon- 2


Soak chickpeas overnight for about 8-9 hours. In a cheese cloth place tea bag,bay leaf, dry mango pieces and dry amla pieces and tie it into a pouch and add this along with chickpeas and cook in a pressure cooker. Add water to the same level as the chickpeas and cook till 3-4 whistles. Once cool discard the pouch that you put inside.

Make a paste of onion, ginger and green chilly and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan ( if you like add half of ghee and half of oil). Add all the whole spices cardamon, clove, cinnamon and lightly fry them.
Add the onion mixture and saute for about 2 minutes and then add tomato puree. Cook this for another three minutes till oil separates from the mixture.
Add the dry ingredients- coriander powder, chilly powder, amchur powder,anardhana powder, ginger powder,nutmeg powder and cumin and mix well. Add the cooked chick peas along with the excess water in the pressure cooker. Cover and cook for another four to five minutes or till the gravy thickens. Garnish with coriander leaves

Ingredients for bhature
All purpose flour- 2 cups
Yogurt- 3/4 cup
Baking powder- 1/2 tsp
Sugar- 1 tsp
salt to taste
Poppy seeds- 2 tsp
Oil for frying



Shift flour by mixing in baking powder,a pinch of baking soda and salt.
Add to this sugar, poppy seeds and yogurt and mix well. Using your hands knead the dough well and add little by little water till you have a soft and smooth dough.
Grease the top of the dough with little oil and cover it with a damp cloth. Let it rest for about half an hour and make small balls out of the dough. Cover and let it again rest for another ten minutes.
Heat one and one half cup of oil in a pan. Take each ball and flatten with a rolling pin.
Slide it carefully into the oil. When it puffs up,gently turn to the other side and fry. When both sides are golden brown take out from oil and drain in paper towels
Serve with chole,tamarind dates chutney and finely chopped onions.


Try this..
Hope you will all enjoy..

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