Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Mushroom Suimai / Momo

In my previous post, I shared the recipe of Sichuan Sauce. Here's the recipe for momo. I used mushroom filling for the momos.

For Wanton Wrappers:
Maida - 1/2 cup
Warm water - 1/4 cup

1. Knead maida with warm water to make a firm dough.
2. Roll the dough into a large thin square sheet, about one millimetre think. Cut the sheet into three-inch squares.

For the mushroom filling:
Mushroom - 15-20, cleaned and chopped
Onion - 2 medium sized, finely chopped
Sesame oil - 1 tbsp (I used sunflower oil)
White pepper powder - 1/4 tsp
Soya sauce - 1/2 tsp
Green chillies - 1-2, finely chopped (optional)
Salt - to taste

1. Heat oil in a pan. Saute onions till translucent.
2. Add rest of the ingredients and cook till mushrooms are cooked and extra moisture is evaporated.
3. Divide into 16 equal portions.
4. Place a wanton wrapper on your palm, put a portion of filling on it, gather the edges of the wrapper and pinch firmly together to form a dumpling.
5. Do the same with rest of the wrappers and filling.
6. Steam the dumplings for 8-10 mins or until cooked and translucent. (Since I don't have a Momo steamer, I used my Idli Steamer. But it took about15-20 mins for the momos to cook)
7. Serve hot with Sichuan Sauce.

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Friday, November 25, 2011

Sichuan Sauce

I love love love this sauce... I can have it as a side dish. Back in Kolkata, Momos are one of the popular street foods and they are served along with this sauce. We went out to eat Chinese food and saw the next table being served some Dimsums while our desert arrived. Since then the steamed beauties have been haunting me. Made Mushroom Suimai to go along with Sichuan Sauce. Kids gorged on Suimai by dipping in Tomato Ketchup while Abbas and I drenched our sore throats in Hot Sichuan Sauce. Yummm...

I followed recipe from Sanjeev Kapoor's

Red chillies - 10-12
Oil - 1/2 cup
Garlic cloves - 10, finely chopped
Green chillies - 2, finely chopped
Spring onions - 2, finely chopped
Ginger - 1", grated
Vegetable stock or water - 1/2 cup
Celery Stalk - 2-3", finely chopped (I skipped this)
Tomato Ketchup - 3 tbsp
Salt to taste
Whitw Vinegar - 2 tsp
Spring onion greens - 2 stalks, finely chopped

1. Boil red chillies in a cup of water for 5-7 mins. Drain, cool and grind to a fine paste.
2. Heat oil in a pan, add garlic, green chillies, spring onions and ginger. Saute for one minute. Add red chilli paste and continue to saute for a few more seconds.
3. Add vegetable stock, celery, tomato ketchup and salt to taste and stir well to mix.
4. Add vinegar and spring onion greens. Simmer for one minute and then take the pan off heat.
5. Cool and store preferably in the refrigerator. It will keep for about one month.

PS: Recipe for Momo to follow....

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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Palong Shaager Torkari - Spinach Mishmash with veggies

Kaku and Kakima had invited us for lunch at their place when we were in Kolkata. That was during the first year of my marriage and my first time indulging in an authentic Bengali fare. I simply fell in love with Bong cuisine. All those veggies that I detested earlier suddenly were endearing and I regretted having troubled Amma by being a fussy-picky eater that I was! Abbas teases me saying you were destined to be a Bengali but somehow you were born a Konkani. 

Coming back to Kakima, she addresses me as her 'Choto Meye' (younger daughter) and Abbas as her Jamai. She creates wonders in kitchen. If some dish goes wrong, she analyzes it and provides instant solution that magically changes the taste. She loves to feed and serve and always eats only after she makes sure that everyone has eaten. This dish is one of our favourites and I have never been able to match Kakima's version. Although the recipe is simple and tastes good, we miss Kakima's love in it each time I make it.

Spinach - 3 tiny bunches
Potato - 3/4 cup, diced
Pumpkin - 3/4 cup, diced
Brinjal - 3/4 cup, diced
Ridge Gourd - 3/4 cup, diced
Bori - 1/4 cup (optional)
Panch Phoran - 1 tsp
Red chillies - 1 nos, broken into 3-4 peices
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Bhaja Masala powder - 2 tsp (you may substitute with garam masala powder)
Ghee - 1 tsp
Oil - 4 tbsp
Green chillies - 2-3, finely chopped (increase or decrease as suitable)
Sugar - 1/2 tsp
Coriander leaves - a handful, chopped (optional)
Water - 1/2 cup
Salt - to taste

1. Wash spinach leaves thoroughly in atleast 3 changes of water. Finely chop and keep aside. You may use tender stems of spinach by chopping them in 1"long pieces.
2. Heat oil in a pan.Add turmeric and salt. Add cubed potatoes. Saute till potatoes are uniformly roasted and turn golden in colour. Remove from pan and keep aside.
3. Repeat the same procedure for pumpkin, brinjal and boris.
4. In the remaining oil, add panch phoron and red chilli pieces.
5. Once the tempering splutters, add all the sauteed veggies, ridge gourd, boris and spinach leaves and stems. Add salt, sugar, green chillies, coriander leaves, water and combine.
6. Cover and keep on low flame. Stir once in a while. Once all veggies are cooked, increase flame and cook till extra water (if any) evaporates. This dish is neither too dry nor has any gravy.
7. Remove from flame. Sprinkle bhaja masala powder and ghee on top. Cover immediately. Give a brief stir before serving.

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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Chapathi Noodles

Abbas and I are both rice freaks. So we used to buy meager amount of Wheat Flour which I used for making Puris on weekends. Now that the kids love Chapathis, I end up with a comparatively larger supply of Atta. Mantam love Chapathis. And I never liked making chapathis but for their sake, I have no choice but to oblige. At times, chapathis are left over and no-one wants to eat a re-heated one in the next meal. One such day, I made these Chapathi Noodles inspired by Rak's Kitchen and it was gobbled down in a jiffy.

This is how I made it:

Chapathis - 3
Veegies - 1/2 cup, sliced to thin long juliennes(Carrot, Beans, cabbage, capsium, spring onions)
Onion - 1 medium, sliced
Tomato sauce - 1 tbsp
Soya sauce - 1 tsp
Green chilli sauce - as per taste
Maggi cube - 1
Salt - to taste
Pepper powder - to taste
Scrambled eggs - 2 (optional)
Oil - tbsp

1. Stack chapathis and cut them into quarters. Now cut each stacked quarter into thin long stripes.
2. Heat oil in a pan. Add onions and saute for 2 mins.
3. Now add all the veggies and saute for another 2-3 mins. Add rest of the ingredients, chapathi strips and toss them well so that all sauces and veggies are uniformly mixed with noodles.

Since soya souce, chapathi and tastemaker/cubes have salt in it, be careful while adding extra salt.

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Monday, November 14, 2011

Crab Ghee Roast

As I seem to be on a draft-clear-off spree, here's yet another one. I had seen Paneer Ghee Roast on Divya's blog which led me to the recipe source. The author Kudpi Raj and his wife have recreated the flavours of Chicken Ghee Roast of Hotel Anupama. The pics of Prawn Ghee Roast had me drooling and wanting to dive into the plate. The comment section also was flooded with people sharing their success stories with this recipe. I had the urge to make it ASAP and hence substituted prawns with crabs which I had on hand. The outcome was liked by all of us.

Crabs  - 1 Kg, cleaned
Refined vegetable oil - 30 ml (I reduced both oil and ghee quantity, started off by a little and added a bit more as I went by)
Pure Desi Ghee - 30 ml
Chopped Coriander leaves - A handful
Lemon wedges - To garnish

For marinating:
Juice of 1 lemon
Curd - ½ cup
White Pepper powder - 1 tbsp
Turmeric powder - 1 tsp
Salt - to taste

For masala - grind together:
Red long chillies - 30 roasted (I had only 1 variety and used the same)
Red short chillies - 8 roasted
Coriander Seeds - 1 tsp roasted
Cumin Seeds - ½ sp roasted
Fenugreek Seeds - ½ tsp roasted
Garlic flakes - 12-16
Tamarind - Cherry size ball soaked in 2 tbsp water

1. Marinate crabs with ingredients called for in the marinade section.Keep it marinated for 8-24 hrs in the refrigerator.
2. Heat oil in a shallow pan. Roast the marinated crabs till they cook. Drain and keep aside.
4. In the same oil, roast the ground masala till oil leaves the sides and raw smell disappears. Add salt to taste, the marinade and the cooked crabs. Mix well and keep for 2-3 mins on slow fire. Add ghee, mix and cover. When the masala gets thick, transfer to serving dish, garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with lemon wedges.

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Methi Fried Rice

This post was lying in my draft section for ages and today I finally it is gonna see the light of day! I love greens and always try to include them in our food. Abbas is not fond of greens featuring in a stand alone dish. So I sneak them in curries / pooris / paranthas / rice. This was one such attempt where I made mixed fried rice sprinkled with generous amount of fenugreek leaves.

Off to the recipe:

Basmati rice - 2 cups
Chopped veggies (carrot, beans, capsicum, onions) - 1 cup
Shrimps - 15-20, deshelled, deveined and cleaned (optional)
Shredded chicken pieces - 15-20 (optional)
Eggs - 2 (optional for vegetarians, but I don't like my fried rice w/o eggs)
Fenugreek leaves - 1/2 cup
Soya Sauce - 1 tbsp
Maggi Cube - 1
Pepper powder - to tase
Salt - to taste
Oil - 3 tbsp
White vinegar - 1 tsp
Sugar - 1 tsp

1. Wash and soak rice in sufficient water for 30 mins.
2. Boil 4 cups water in a vessel. Add soaked rice, salt, few drops of oil and vinegar. Let it cook. Keep checking to make sure the rice doesn't get fully cooked. Remove from flame when the rice is 'almost' cooked. Drain the water away. Spread rice on a flat surface. Do not cover it. Keep aside.
3. Stir in 1 tsp each of sugar and salt in about 2 cups of water. Soak the fenugreek leaves in this solution for about 15 mins. Strain the water and tightly squeeze out extra water. Saute the leaves in a tsp of oil for about 2-3 mins. Keep aside.
4. In a pan, heat 1 tsp of oil. Add eggs, salt. Scramble the eggs and keep aside.
5. In the same pan, add 1 tsp of oil, fry chicken pieces and shrimp with some salt. Remove and keep aside till the rice cools down.
6. In the same pan take rest of the oil, add all the veggies.
7. Once the veggies are sauted, add soya sauce, shrimp, chicken, scrambled eggs, chopped mint and coriander leaves and rice. Sprinkle maggi cube powder. Mix well.
8. Check salt at this stage. If less, add a bit more of soya sauce or maggi cube (both are salty and mix well with rice instead of raw salt) and mix.

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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding

This blog of mine was absolutely neglected last week. I generally have a set of dishes cooked during weekends which I click and save in my drafts. Whenever I find some time during the week, I publish the drafted dishes. I am not able to locate where I have kept the pics of the recently cooked dishes. I was absolutely busy during the last week due to which I simply cooked the routine dishes without having the energy to experiment or cook something elegant.

Blogosphere was flooding with this Chocolate Pudding that all my fellow sweet punch mates were posting. I missed participating in the last two months and I did not want to miss out this time. I finally made this today and guess what - My daughters asked for the recipe!!! *rolls eyes*

Also, I got to apologize for not commenting on anyone's blogs for sometime now. I hope to catch up soon. Thanks to all those who have been dropping by coz I see my blog's statistics have been consistent although posting had immensely dropped.

This recipe was chosen by Divya. She is a wonderful blogger and an inspiration to me especially in baking. Divya has recently been a victim of plagiarism. I was shocked to see the site which shamelessly copied recipes from her blog verbatim. They did not spare her 'About Me' page as well. Divya has raised a complaint and I really wish the copy-cat blog gets shut down. 

Heading to the recipe now:

Flour - 1 cup
Baking powder - 2 tsp
Cocoa - 2 tsp
Pinch salt (Skip if using salted butter)
Sugar - 1/2 cup
Butter - 2 tbsp, melted
Milk - 1/2 tsp
Egg - 1, beaten
Almonds - 50 gms, chopped

For the topping:
Sugar - 1/2 cup
Cocoa - 3 tbsp
Water - 1cup
Instant Coffee Powder - 1 tsp

1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
2. Sift together flour, baking powder, cocoa powder, salt, and sugar.
3. Stir through butter, milk, egg and almonds until well combined.
4 Spoon batter into 4 ramekins. (I used 5 teacups)
5 Mix together sugar, cocoa powder, coffee powder and sugar. Pour over the tea cups. Do not stir.
6 Bake for 20 minutes.

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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Fish Pulao cooked in Coconut Milk

There are a few go to blogs where I hop for specific recipe needs, without worrying about the end result. Pree's blog is one among them. Mostly for non-veg dishes, I have been lately referring to her recipes on and off coz they have given me accolades each time. While surfing through her recipes I saw an impromptu invention of hers in the form of Prawn Biryani. I modified the recipe as per ingredient availability in my pantry and the pulao came out delicious to say the least.

Here is how I made it:
Basmati rice - 1 1/2 cups
Seer / King fish - 5-6 medium sized pieces
Onion - 1 medium sized, finely sliced
Garlic - 7-8 cloves
Ginger - 2"piece
Green chillies - 4 or as per spice tolerance
Coriander leaves - a handful
Lemon juice - few drops
Red chilli powder - 1 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1 tsp
Black pepper powder - 1 tsp
Coconut milk - 1 cup
Cooking oil - 2 tbsp
Cardamom - 2 (Green and black)
Cinnamon - 1 stick
Bay leaves - 2
Star anise - 1 
Nigella seeds - 1/2 tsp
Nutmeg - a pinch grated
Salt to taste

1. Boil fish pieces in enough water with salt and turmeric powder. Once the fish pieces are cooked, strain the water and reserve. Remove the bones from fish and keep aside.

2. Grind ginger and garlic together. Keep aside.
3. Grind green chillies and coriander leaves together. Keep aside.
4. Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pan and saute onion slices till brown.
5. Add ginger garlic paste and saute for a few minutes till the raw smell goes away.
6. Add chilli-coriander chutney and saute for 4-5 minutes.
7. Add fish pieces, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, black pepper powder, salt and combine.
8In another frying pan, heat the remaining one tbsp oil, add the bay leaves, cinnamon, cardamom, nigella seeds, star anise and stir for a minute. Add the rice and fry till the grains get coated with the oil. Add the grated nutmeg, and salt (carefully as our prawns already have some). Fry for 3-4 minutes and remove from heat. 

9. In a microwave safe bowl, add the rice, fish mixture, one cup of thick coconut milk and one cup plus two tbsps of water.
10. Microwave on high for 20 mins and let it stand for atleast 10 mins.

Just out of the microwave oven...

After giving a light stir...
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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Bharwan Bhindi

Ladies' finger gets counted in the list of my favourite veggies. And I'm glad to discover that my kids love it too. Bharwan Bhindi has been in my to-do list for quite a long time. But most recipes I laid my eyes on in the www had coconut in the stuffing or just a mix of few spice powders. Neither of these struck a chord. I decided to stuff with paneer burji. I sauteed some chopped onions... and realized I had ran out of tomatoes. I dunked in tomato ketchup, mixed in crumbled paneer, some spice powder, salt, coriander leaves and combined. Abbas came into the kitchen and like a dutiful husband, asked "Do you need some help Seemu?" Chance pe dance I did. "Would you like to stuff bhindis?" After some thoughts, he obliged.

I heated some oil in a pan. Added a pinch of cumin seeds and asafoetida. I placed the stuffed bhindis neatly and sprinkled the leftover stuffing on top. When the bhindis were almost cooked, I realized that the salt was less. I plainly sprinkled some salt on top. After light stirring I felt that the salt was more now. Hmmm, I did not give up! I added some tamarind extract... WTH? You may exclaim. Out of the box thinking, I say. Anyway, again I felt the bhindis were getting soggy and suddenly craved for some crispy bhindis. Guess what I did. I sprinkled some Besan all over and gave a good stir.

Inspite of all these impromptu additions, the end product came out a winner. I wonder if I will be able to recreate the taste next time when I add in the known ingredients!

Get going with your instincts... With tender Bhindis in your kitty, you can never go wrong!

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