Friday, January 30, 2009

Tindora Curry can call this my second favorite vegetable. My first, of course, being Potato. I usually make a fry, but this time I thought I'll try something different. So, I just put in everything I could find, but let me tell you, it was delicious!


about 50 Tindora -- cut any way you like, I made rounds
1/2 medium Onion -- finely chopped
1 tsp Ginger-Garlic Paste
3 tbsp Dry Ground Coconut
1/2 tsp Turmeric
2 tbsp Garam Masala Powder
2 tsp Red Chilli Powder
1 1/2 tsp Salt
2 tbsp Oil


1/4 tsp Mustard Seeds
1/8 tsp Jeera
1/2 tsp Urid Dal
1/2 tsp Channa Dal


In a pan, heat oil and add in the tadka ingredients.
When the mustard seeds splutter, add in onion and ginger-garlic paste.
When the onion softens, add in the tindora pieces and let it cook until they soften.
Now add in turmeric, salt, garam masala and red chilli powder. Mix well.
Mix in the coconut and you are done!

NOTE: I meant to add only 2 tbsp of Garam Masala, but probably about 3 tbsp fell out of the packet. Nevertheless, it still tasted great. So, you can increase or decrease the spices based on your taste.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Cabbage and Peas Curry


1 medium Cabbage -- finely chopped
1/2 medium Onion -- finely chopped
1 cup Peas
3 to 4 Green Chillies -- more or less depending on your spice levels
2 tsp Ginger-Garlic Paste
Red Chili Powder


Mustard Seeds
Channa Dal


Fill half of a microwave safe bowl with water and add in the chopped cabbage. Cook until the soft.
Heat about 2 tbsp of oil in a pan and add in all of the tadka ingredients.
Once the mustard seeds splutter, add in onion and green chillies along with ginger-garlic paste.
Add in the cooked cabbage and peas. I used frozen peas, so I waited until the peas were soft. Add in the turmeric, salt, red chili powder and cook covered for a few minutes, so that all of the flavor is absorbed into the cabbage.
NOTE: Once you add the salt, the water from the cabbage will start to come out. It is best if you cook the curry until this the water evaporates.
Serve with rice or roti. YUM!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Pav Bhaji

Ah! The famous Pav Bhaji! Something that can be enjoyed in so many different ways. It's just as famous at the Chaat places in India, as it is at a dinner party. I had a Chaat dinner party over the weekend, with some store bought frozen samosas and pani puri, but I had to make the pav bhaji from scratch. Here's what I did...

INGREDIENTS for the Bhaji

1 medium Onion -- chopped finely
1 medium Green Pepper -- chopped finely
1 large Tomato -- chopped finely
2 medium Potatoes -- I used potatoes
1 large Carrot
1 medium Cauliflower
1 cup Green Peas -- the frozen kind will do just fine
1 cup Green Beans -- I used frozen for this too
1 tsp Ginger-Garlic Paste
Pav Bhaji Masala
Red Chilli Powder
3 tbsp Butter + more for garnishing
Cilantro (Coriander) -- for garnishing
1 tsp Lime Juice -- or lemon if you like the taste of that better you will need for garnishing


Peel and chop the potatoes, cauliflower and carrot and add to a pressure cooker safe bowl with the green beans and peas. Pressure cook the vegetables with some water until they soften, about 1 whistle if you are using a regular pressure cooker.
Drain the water and roughly mash the cooked vegetables.
In a large pot, melt the butter and add in the onions, tomatoes and green peppers along with the ginger-garlic paste.
The green peppers provide a little bit of a crunch to the bhaji, so once the onions and tomatoes are well cooked, add in salt, red chilli powder and pav bhaji masala to your desired taste, add the water you drained from the vegetables and let the mixture come to a boil. Add in the mashed vegetables and mix everything well.
Turn off and mix in the lime juice.
Since the lime juice turns bitter as you cook it, it is important to turn off the stove before you add the juice, the heat from the bhaji will be enough to help it mix in with the rest of the curry.

For the Pav

I used regular whole wheat bread slices, but you can use buns or dinner rolls as well.

Toast the bread and rub both sides with a little bit of melted butter. I toast my bread on a skillet, but a toaster will work as well. Just be sure to keep an eye on it.

Serving suggestion:

Garnish the bhaji with finely chopped onions, cilantro, a small cube of butter and a piece of lime (or lemon), it is best served hot.


I had some left over bhaji after the party was over. Sure I could have just served it as a regular curry with roti, but I really wanted to do something different.
So, this is what I did...

Place the left over bhaji in a serving bowl, add curd (or yogurt), tamarind chutney, coriander chutney, onion, lime juice, boondi, sev and coriander. Serve!
Since I had all of these ingredients left over from the party, I just added them all! :)
Tastes great hot or cold.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Instant Dosa

I see so many different variations to the regular dosa, so I'm just putting up my version of the recipe I've seen else where -- the Rava Dosa.


1 cup Sooji
1 cup Rice Flour
a pinch Baking Soda
Black Pepper
1/4 cup Sour Curd


In a mixing bowl, add the sooji, rice flour, baking soda, jeera, salt, black pepper and dry mix everything. Now make a batter (should be similar to tomato sauce consistency) using the curd and water. Set aside for about 20 mins.
Heat a skillet, make sure it's pretty hot, probably about a heat setting of a 7 out of 10.
Pour two ladlefuls of batter onto the center of the skillet and using the back of the ladle, run the ladle along the batter in smooth circular motions. Pour a little bit of oil along the edge of the dosa and let it brown on the bottom side, turn the dosa over for a few minutes, until all of the batter is cooked.

Remove from heat and serve with your favorite chutney and sambar.

You can also add onion, green chilli, carrots, grean peas, tomatoes, just about any topping you would like to the dosa batter to suit your tastes.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Weekday Curries

Here are two easy to make curries that are great with Rice or Roti.

Potato and Capsicum Curry

Isn't it strange how no matter where we are we still refer to Green Pepper as Capsicum when it is referenced in a curry? Well, I find it odd anyway, I might just be one of those strange people! :)
Here's a simple every day curry that is easy to make on those nights when you don't have a lot of energy to cook.


2 medium Potatoes -- cubed
1 Green Pepper -- chopped finely
1/2 medium Onion -- chopped finely -- optional
Red Chilli Powder
Garam Masala Powder


Mustard Seeds
Urid Dal
Channa Dal


Fill a microwave safe bowl halfway with water and add in the chopped potato and green pepper pieces. Cook in the microwave until the pieces soften. You can also cook the pieces in a pressure cooker.
In a pan, add about 2 tbsp of oil and add in all of the tadka ingredients.
Once the mustard seeds splutter and the dals brown, add in the chopped onion and let soften.
Now add in the cooked veggie pieces.
Add turmeric, salt, red chilli powder and garam masala powder. Mix everything well.
The curry is ready to be served.

Okra Fry (Bhindi/Lady's Finger Fry)

Another easy to prepare curry, especially if you buy the frozen okra. Then you don't have to worry about chopping the veggies even.


1 package Frozen Okra -- probably about 20 to 30 Fresh Okra
Red Chilli Powder


Mustard Seeds
Urid Dal
Channa Dal


Run the frozen okra under warm water in a colander, sprinkle with some salt and set it aside.
In a pan, heat 2 tbsp of oil and add all the tadka ingredients.
When the mustard seeds start to splutter and the dals brown, add in the okra pieces, cover and let cook until the okra browns and it is no longer sticky.
Add in turmeric, some more salt (if the salt you sprinkled on top wasn't enough), red chilli powder.
Your okra curry is ready to go!!!

So the next time you don't feel like cooking or you have unexpected guests, try these curries will make it seem as if you slaved in the kitchen to get them done, but they are easy as 1-2-3.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Tomato Soup


1/2 can of Tomato Paste -- I used the other half of the paste I had left after making Chole
about 2 1/2 cups Water
1/4 cup Milk
1 tbsp Butter
Toppings -- I used Garlic and Cheese croutons and tortilla chips
Black Pepper
1 tsp Dhania Powder


In a pan, mix the tomato paste with water until there are no lumps and you get a water like consistency. The soup will thicken as it cooks, so it should be pretty runny.
Let it come to a boil.
Now add in the milk and butter and mix well. This will give the soup a creamy consistency.
Mix in salt and black pepper to the desired taste. To give it more of an Indian taste, I also added in some dhania powder.
Pour into soup bowls and top it off with anything you like from grilled cheese sandwiches, crackers, chips to the good old croutons.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Coconut Chutney


1 cup freshly ground Coconut -- I used the frozen kind
a handful Peanuts
3 to 4 Green Chillies -- you can use less or more based on your spice preference

1/4 inch Ginger piece
1 tsp Lime Juice


Mustard Seeds
Cumin Seeds
Urid Dal
Channa Dal
Red Chillies


Grind the coconut, peanuts, green chillies and ginger. Add as much or as little water as you'd like, add salt and blend everything well. I don't like my chutney too runny, so I only used a little bit of water, probably less than a 1/4 cup.
In a tadka pan, add about 1 tbsp of oil and add all the tadka ingredients and cook until the mustard seeds splutter and the dals brown.
Place the grounded mixture in a serving bowl, top with a little bit of lime juice and add the tadka. Mix everything well.
This chutney is great with dosas and idlis.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Chole - Channa Masala


2 cans Garbanzo Beans -- washed. You can also get the regular beans and soak them in water overnight
1/2 can Tomato Paste -- about 3 oz. I used the 6 oz can of the regular Hunts Tomato Paste
1 small Onion -- finely chopped
Channa Masala
Dhania Masala
Amchur Powder
Red Chilli Powder


In a large pan, heat oil and add the chopped onion.
Once the onion softens, add in the tomato paste and about 2 to 2 1/2 cups water, based on how think you like your gravy. Mix everything well until you get a gravy like consistency and add in the washed beans.
Cover and let cook until the beans are cooked and the gravy comes to a boil.
Now add in the turmeric, salt, red chilli powder, dhania powder, channa masala and amchur powder.
Mix everything well. I served it with roti, but it's great with rice too.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Majjiga Pulusu


1 cup Curd
2 tbsp Besan
handful Bottlegourd Pieces
3 to 4 Green Chillies
2 to 3 Curry Leaves
Red Chilli Powder -- optional, if the spice from the green chillies isn't enough


Mustard Seeds
Urid Dal -- optional
Channa Dal -- optional
2 Red Chillies
Methi Seeds
Hing -- optional


In a small bowl, add the besan and whisk it with a little bit of water until it gets a paste like consistency. Approximately a 1/4 cup of water.
In a separate bowl, beat the curd until it gets to be like buttermilk. You can also directly use buttermilk, if you don't have curd handy.
Mix the beaten curd with besan and let it sit.
In a large cooking pan, add the bottlegourd pieces (and any other pieces you want to use) and enough water to soak the pieces. Boil the pieces until they are well cooked.
Add the curd mixture and mix everything well. Let it come to a boil.
Mix in the turmeric and salt.
In a small tadka pan, add about 2 tbsp of oil and add all the tadka ingredients, green chillies and curry leaves. Once the mustard seeds start to splutter, add this to the boiled curd mixture.
Serve hot or cold with steamed rice.

NOTE: Be sure not to add too much water as this will make your pulusu too runny. Start off with about 2 cups of water. You can always add more after the water has evaporated.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Cucumber and Carrot Raita

So yesterday it was the Pulao and today it's the Raita....

Of course, everyone knows how to make Raita, but here's my recipe anyway:


1 Cucumber -- english or regular -- but the english one doesn't have any seeds -- peeled and grated finely
1 Carrot -- peeled and grated finely
3 to 4 cups Whisked Yogurt/Curd -- you can also use buttermilk if you like your raita runny
Cumin Powder
Black Pepper


Set aside the grated cucumber and carrot for about 10 to 15 minutes and then drain all the excess water that gathers. If you like your raita runny, you could use really thick yogurt and keep this water as well. Mix the yogurt, cucumber and carrot well with salt.
Garnish with the cumin powder and black pepper and serve chilled.

Monday, January 12, 2009



3 cups Basmati Rice -- washed
1/2 medium Onion -- thinly sliced
1 medium Tomato -- thinly sliced
1 medium Potato -- cubed
1 medium Carrot -- cut into thin strips
1 cup chopped Green Beans -- I used the frozen kind
1/2 cup Green Peas -- again I used frozen
handful Mint -- finely chopped
handful Coriander -- finely chopped
6 Green Chillies -- slit lenghtwise
1/8 cup butter
1/4 cup oil
Ginger/Garlic Paste
Garam Masala
Cumin Powder
Coriander Powder
4 small Bay Leaves
4 Cardamom
4 Cloves
1 Cinnamon Stick


I cook my pulao directly in a pressure cooker without any dishes. So, in a pressure cooker, add the oil and the butter cube.
Once the butter cube melts and stops spluttering, you know that it is well cooked, so it is time to add in the cardamom, cloves, cinnamon and bay leaves.
Now add in the onion, green chilli, mint and coriander. After the onion softens, add in the tomato.
You know that the tomato is well cooked when it turns clear, when this takes place, add in the ginger garlic, garam masala, cumin powder and coriander powder.
Mix everything well and add in the potato, carrot, green bean and green pea pieces. You can use any other vegetables you like as well.
After the frozen pieces soften slightly, add about 4 and 1/2 cups of water (1 and 1/2 cup for every cup of basmati rice) and salt.
When the water comes to a boil, add in the washed rice and toss gently, so that the rice is well mixed with the other ingredients.
Cover and let it cook for the same amount of time as your regular rice.
Serve with raita or any other gravy curries.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Easy Breezy Cauliflower

I never really liked cauliflower, it's just a vegetable I eat if there is nothing else, but mom makes this a lot and I love it this way because you don't really taste the cauliflower too much.


1 whole Cauliflower -- seperated into bite size florets
4 tbsp Besan
1 tsp Jeera
Red Chilli Powder


Add the florets and enough water to soak them, in a microwave safe bowl. Heat until the cauliflower florets are just a little soft. Took about 4 minutes for me.
In a pan heat about 3 to 4 tbsp of oil (the cauliflower and besan will soak up the oil, so you need a little extra than you would put in a regular curry) and add jeera. Once the jeera browns add in the cauliflower pieces. I like my curries a little crispy, so I let them brown for a little while.
Once the pieces are cooked throughly, add in the besan, turmeric, salt and red chilli powder to taste, mix everything well and cook until the raw smell from the besan disappears. Should take about 2 to 3 minutes.
Remove from heat and serve with rice or roti.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Maggie Noodles


2 Maggie Vegetable Atta Noddles -- available in any Indian grocery store
2 Maggie Masala Packets -- come with the noddles
Vegetables of your choice -- I used Cabbage, Carrots, Green Peppers -- chopped finely
3 Green Chillies
Black Pepper


In a microwave safe bowl, add the noodles and enough water to soak the noodles. Heat the noodles in the microwave until they are just a little bit under cooked. (Took about 5 minutes in my microwave.) Drain and keep it aside.
In the same bowl, add the vegetables and fill it with water again. Heat the vegetables for 8 minutes or until they are soft. Drain.
In a deep pan, add about 2 tbsp of oil and add in the vegetables. If you feel that the vegetables did not cook completely in the microwave, they can be cooked further at this point. Add in the desired amount of salt and black pepper and the masala packets from the noodles. Fold in the noodles, so that everything is coated evenly.
Serve hot with ketchup or any sauce you like.
NOTE: Depending on my mood, I even add add some garam masala, dhania powder, and jeera powder to my noodles. I like my noodles more spicy some days than others.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Carrot Halwa

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!!!!!! Yea, yea I know I'm a little late. I was waiting to post something sweet as my first recipe of the new year and I finally found some time to make the following. Sorry about the picture, it was the best my camera could do!!


4 Carrots -- grated finely
1 cup Milk
5 tbsp Sugar
1 1/2 tsp Ghee - 3 tsp if it's already melted
Optional Garnishings (I used Raisins, Cashews and Almonds)


Heat Ghee in a pan and add in any garnishing items you want to use. Once all the nuts brown slightly remove them from the heat.
Add milk and the grated carrots to the ghee. Let the milk come to a boil. Now add in the sugar and let everything come together on a medium-low flame.
It is important to keep it on a low flame, otherwise the carrots won't cook properly.
Once the mixture thickens, take it off heat and add in the nuts and raisins.
The whole cooking process might take about 20 minutes.
Serve hot or cold, it's good either way!!
Be sure to refrigerate unused portions.
NOTE: The nuts will continue to look while they are hot, so take them out before they brown completely or you'll have burnt nuts.