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Meat Curry

March 23, 2013

 

meat curry

Ingredients:

Lamb meat  – 1/2 kg

Potatoes (large) -2

Onions(large)- 2

Capsicum -2

Ginger- 1 inch piece

Garlic- 4

Tomatoes(large) -2

Green chillies- 4 (more if  you want it spicier)

Green Cardamom -2

Cinnamon sticks-1

Bay leaves- 2

Cumin seeds – 1 tsp

Black peppercorns- 1/2 tsp

Nutmeg-1

Turmeric powder- 1/2 tsp

Coriander powder- 1/2 tsp

Red chilli powder- 1/2 tsp

Garam masala powder- 1 pinch

Salt-as per requirement

Sugar- 1/2 tsp

Mustard oil- 3tbsp

Water- if required

Method of preparation.

Marinated Meat

Marinated Meat

Wash meat well and cut into bite size pieces. Trim and throw any fat (white parts) on the pieces. Marinate for approximately 3-4 hours with turmeric powder, salt, curd and lemon juice.

Grind onions, garlic, ginger, green chillies together. Grind capsicum and tomato separately. Keep aside.

Wash, peel and cut 2 potatoes in half and fry them till they are semi-soft. Keep aside.

Heat  Mustard oil in a frying pan/wok. Add bay leaves, black peppercorns, split green cardamom, cinnamon sticks, cumin seeds,  nutmeg, whole garlic. Fry for a few seconds.

fried onions

fried onions

Add onion-garlic-ginger-chilli paste. Add salt. Add sugar. Fry till deep brown. (sugar adds a deeper colour and is mostly used in bengali preparations only.) Add turmeric, coriander, garam masala, red chilli powder and mix well.

onions, capsicum

onions, capsicum

Add capsicum past and stir.

Adding tomato paste

Adding tomato paste

Add tomato paste.

Add meat

Add meat

Mix well and stir for 2 minutes. Add the marinated lamb pieces one by one. Cover with lid so that flavour doesn’t escape.

stir meat continuously

stir meat continuously

Keep stirring well till the meat leaves water. Add potatoes. Cover with a lid. If the curry becomes too dry then add some water. But since water only dilutes the taste, so its better to do without it if your can. Since lamb meat is not as soft as chicken, so this would take atleast 40 mins to cook in a pan/wok. So to reduce this time, you could transfer the curry into a pressure cooker and cook for nearly 20-25 minutes.

Meat is READY!

Meat is READY!

And it is Ready to be served!

Sooji ka Halwa

March 22, 2013

Suji ka Halwa is a sweet dish made out of semolina and one of the easiest sweet dishes to make. It is something most people like and anybody can make. This recipe is a simple shortcut.

For this you would need-

Semolina/Sooji -1 cup

Bay leaves- 2

Sugar – 6-8 spoons (or as per taste)

Cardamom- 2-3

Raisins- 15 (optional)

Cashew- 10 (optional)

Butter/Ghee-2-3 tbsp (this can be substituted with oil if Ghee cannot be used for health reasons. But ghee instills a flavour and aroma which would be absent if you use oil)

Sooji ka Halwa

Method of Preparation

In a pan heat ghee/butter, add bay leaves followed by sooji. Roast it continuously till brown. This takes nearly 10 minutes but you have to be careful since there are chances of burning sooji.

Add cashew and raisins followed by water. Add sugar and keep stirring.  Stir till water dries a little and the mix is thick and comes off pan.

Serve hot!

Biryani for you

March 22, 2013

I firmly believe that one of the best things that happened when Mughals conquered most of India  is – Biryani!!! As you would have guessed it, I am a non-vegetarian. But the sad part is I can’t stand the smell of flesh while eating flesh. The good part is- chicken biryani doesn’t smell of chicken. It only smells of tasty food! 😀

Btw my brother loves Biryani (so does my father but he never quite admits it) and so there is an added incentive to make it at home.

This is a quick and safe preparation, a “pakki biryani” and you cannot go wrong with it – EVER!

Pakki Biryani!

Chicken Biryani

The ingredients Required-

Chicken (with bones) – 6 leg pieces

Onions – 4 (sliced)

Tomato – 2 to 3

Lemon juice – 1 tsp

Bay leaves- 4

Green Cardamom- 4

Cinnamon sticks- 3

Black peppercorns – 15

Caraway seeds (shahi jeera) – 3 tsp

Curd- 3tbsp

Ginger – 1 inch piece

Garlic- 6 cloves

Green chillies- 4 to 6 (depending upon taste)

Red chilli powder- 1/2 tsp

Turmeric powder- 1 tsp

Coriander powder – 1/2 tsp

Hing/Asafoetida- 1 pinch

Garam Masala powder – 1 pinch

Basmati rice (or long grain fine rice) – 1 & 1/4 th cup

ghee or butter – 1 tbsp

Saffron (optional)

Coriander leaves – a few

Mint leaves – a few (optional)

Salt- as per taste

Water- as required

Cashew- 10

Raisins- 15 (but only if you like a bit of sweetness in everything, like a true bong 😀 )

Method of preparation-

Marinated Chicken

Marinated Chicken

Wash the chicken pieces well. Marinate in a deep bowl with turmeric powder, salt, ginger-garlic paste, green chilli paste, shahi jeera, a few peppercorns, curd, lemon juice and 1 tsp ghee/oil.

Marinate for an hour or so.

Grind 1 onion with garlic, ginger and green chillies. Make a paste of tomatoes.

Deep fried Onions

Deep fried Onions

Chop two onions and deep fry them. Keep Aside.

Heat oil (about 2tbsp vegetable oil) in a wok/pan and add a pinch of hing, 2 bay leaves, shahi jeera, black peppercorns, 1 whole garlic,  2 green cardamoms, 1 cinnamon stick (pounded). Fry for 30 seconds. Add onion-ginger-garlic-chilli paste, salt and fry till golden brown. Add 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, 1/2 tsp coriander powder, 1/2 tsp red chilli or kashmiri mirch powder and a pinch of garam masala powder.  Mix well.

Add tomato paste. Keep stirring.

Finally add the chicken pieces. Keep stirring. Cook for another 15 mins or till chicken are soft.

preparing chicken for pakki biryani

preparing chicken for pakki biryani

Now the second part of making Biryani is very important. Wash rice properly and soak it for 30 mins.

Heating water for rice

Heating water for rice

Choose only the best quality rice. Boil water with two cinnamon sticks, green cardamom, cloves, bay leaves, shahi jeera, black pepercorns and 1 tsp ghee or butter.

Once it comes to a boil, add the washed and soaked rice. Add salt according to taste. After a few minutes, add cashew and raisins.

Almost done rice

Almost done rice

Cook till rice is almost done.  Sieve water and set aside.

Now in a pressure cooker or a thick bottomed, top-covered vessel add chicken and rice in layers.

Layering in a Biryani

Layering in a Biryani

Layering in a Biryani

Layering in a Biryani

Layering in a Biryani

Layering in a Biryani

First put a tsp of ghee/butter. Followed by the chicken curry prepared, a bit of rice and then chicken pieces and chicken curry followed by rice…

Finally top it with fried onions and mint and coriander leaves. Sprinkle saffron water on top.

Cook on low flame for about 5 mins. When all the steam is out , open the lid and serve hot.

Biryani with Raita

Biryani with Raita

Biryani tastes best with Raita. Raita is made of curd (with salt, sugar, crushed and powdered black peppercorns with seasonal fruits).

Bake a Cake !

March 21, 2013

Now, unlike cooking, baking is a totally different ball game where you need to stick to the rules. And that is something that I’ve learnt the hard way. However, not forgotten the lesson having learnt it … a couple of times now 😀

So here is a  beginner’s guide on : How to bake a chocolate cake.

Ingredients Required:

Eggs-4

Vanilla essence- 1 tbsp

Flour- 1 Cup

Cocoa powder – 1/2 cup

Castor sugar- 1 & 1/3 cup

Baking powder -1/2 tsp

Sodium Bicarbonate- 1 pinch

Vegetable oil- 3/4th cup

Almonds – 10-15

Raisins- 15

Chocolate Cake

Chocolate Cake

Method of Preparation

Beat eggs till it mixes well. Add vanilla essence. Beat well.

Add sugar to it little by little and continue beating it vigorously till sugar dissolves completely. The mixture should be a bit fluffy now.

Add oil to this mixture slowly. Keep beating for a smooth consistency.

Sieve flour, baking powder, sodium bicarbonate and cocoa in a vessel. Mix well. Now add this to the egg mixture slowly. Do not beat the mixture at this point, instead only keep folding it.

Add almonds and raisins. If you want you could replace this by other nuts and even use dates instead of raisins.

Pre heat oven at 180 degree C.

Transfer the mixture in a circular tin vessel (8′ diameter). Before transferring the mixture, coat the bottom with butter or oil and dust it with flour. This ensures that the mixture doesn’t stick to the bottom.

Bake for 35 mins at 180 degrees.

After 35 mins, insert a knife/toothpick in the cake to check whether the cake is done. If it comes out clean, your cake is done.

Take out the cake after 10-15 minutes. Cool & Serve.

Pudina Chutney (Mint Chutney)

March 20, 2013

Pudine ki chutney is one of the most famous chutneys which go well with non-vegetarian dishes, especially fries or grilled items. Like always, enlisting a simple preparation here.

Ingredients required for the chutney are-

Pudina chutney ingredients

Pudina chutney ingredients

1/2  bunch of pudina or Mint leaves (properly washed)

3/4 th  bunch of coriander leaves

4 Green chillies (or as per taste)

1 onion

2 cloves

1 inch ginger

1/2 lemon’s juice

1 unripe mango (small)

salt- as per requirement

In a grinder, make a paste of mango pulp; onions, ginger, garlic, chillies, salt; coriander leaves and mint leaves separately. Then put them together and grind once till it becomes smooth.

Refrigerate and serve with food.

Pudina ki chutney - Mint Chutney

Pudina ki chutney – Mint Chutney

Note: Before using mint leaves, taste one leaf from the bunch. If it is bitter in taste then don’t use.

Luci and Aloo r chorchoree

March 20, 2013

Well, if it sounds Greek then it isn’t. 😀 It is a purely Bengali dish. It isn’t even considered a dish actually, just a breakfast snack.

Luci & aloo r chorchoree

Luci & aloo r chorchoree

Luci is the Hindi equivalent of puri and “aloo r chorchoree” is a sabzee of aloo (potato curry).

lets start by making the potato curry. This is one of the simplest, easiest and healthiest preparations of potato and it tastes really good too.

Ingredients for Aloo r chorchoree / potato curry-

Potatoes- 3 large ones

Mustard oil- 1 tbsp

Nigella seeds/kalonji- 1 tsp

Green chillies- 4-5 (adjust according to taste)

Salt – 1/3rd tsp (adjust according to taste)

Water- 4 cups

Method of preparation

Preparation of aloo r chorchoree

Preparation of aloo r chorchoree

Skin and wash the potatoes well. Cut them into thin long slices (almost like french fries).

Take water in a pan, add the potatoes, salt, green chillies (cut in two or three), nigella seeds and stir. Add mustard oil and stir well.

Put a lid on the pan and let it simmer for another 10-15 minutes. Stir in between.

Aloor chorchoree

Aloor chorchoree

Take off from the flame when the potatoes becomes soft and the water evaporates. Serve with luci 🙂

(Oh how to make a luci…well another post for that one!  😉 )

Chicken Somethings…

March 19, 2013

Chicken somethings are somethings which are cooked when you are totally bored of the regular stuff (and yet do not want to go out and buy a KFC burger). And guess what- these somethings taste quite good! 🙂

chicken somethings

chicken somethings

Okay, first the ingredients:-

Chicken – 4 pieces

Onion-1

Garlic Cloves- 8 pieces

Ginger- 1 inch

Lemon juice- 1/2

green chillies- 2 (more if you want it spicier)

Red Chillies- 2

Red Chilli Powder- 1/3 tsp

Turmeric powder- 1/3 rd tsp

Salt- as per requirement

Bread crumbs-

Egg- 1

Vegetable oil – 6 tbsps

Mode of preparation

paste

Onion-garlic-ginger-chilli paste

Make a paste of onion, garlic, ginger, green chillies and 1 red chilli. Adjust the amount of chillies according to your taste.

marinate

Marinated chicken

Marinate the chicken pieces in this paste, lemon juice, turmeric powder, salt and a few drops of oil for 3-4 hours.

After 4 hours,  microwave for 4 mins. This makes the chicken soft.

Now beat the egg and add some red chilli powder and salt to it. Dip each chicken piece in the beaten egg and dust it with bread crumbs, to which a bit of red chilli powder has been added (or you could use corn flakes dust, dust of biscuits instead of bread).

Now sprinkle a few drops on oil on each of the pieces and grill them for 8 mins. You would see them turn golden brown after some time. Flip them, sprinkle a few drops of oil and grill for another 4 mins or till it turns golden.

chicken somethings, which go with everything! :-)

chicken somethings, which go with everything! 🙂

Serve hot with chutney, preferably of pudina. Bon appetit! 🙂