Friday, September 7, 2018

Sweet Sour Bitter Gourd With Mustard




Bitter gourd is one of those extremely healthy vegetables which is  rich all valuable nutrients  like iron, beta Carotene, calcium and potassium but many of us specially kids are  reluctant to eat vegetables due to its unique bitter taste. so if we manage to remove the bitterness by adding spices and sweetness then teaming it with other vegetables like onions, potatoes, brinjal and tomatoes, it turns into a delectable side dish .The recipe shared here is one of those traditional bengali dish which is a combination of sweet, tangy, spicy and a light touch of bitterness. Mustard paste  lends a unique achaari taste to the dish.

Ingredients:

Bitter Gourd Fine 4 medium sized
Onion Finely chopped 1Large
potato Fine cut  1medium
mustard paste 2Tablespoon
paanch phoron (five spices) 1Teaspoon
Red chili whole 2 nos
Turmeric Powder 1Teaspoon
Red Chili Powder 1/2 Teaspoon
Tamarind Paste or juice 1teaspoon
Mustard oil 1 Tablespoo
Salt as per taste
Sugar 1Teaspoon

Method:

1. Wash the bitter gourds well and cut  the vegetable into fine pieces and set aside.

2.Wash potato  and cut into small cubes.

3. Heat mustard oil in a non-stick kadhai. When oil is smoking hot, add paanch phoron and Red chili. when it starts spluttering add chopped onion saute for a minute then add potato slices and chopped bitter gourd. Mix well and set the heat to medium-low. Cook covered for about 6 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.

4.  Add Turmeric powder, Chili powder and salt. saute for a couple of minutes. Cover the pan with a lid and cook it in low flame for 5 to 6 minutes more, till it become tender.

5. Now add Mustard paste, Tamarind paste and sugar and give a good stir and cover it for about 5 minutes till the spices gets cooked nicely spreading the aroma of mustard.Turn off the heat.
Let it cool a bit and serve with warm cooked plain rice.

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Cheese Stuffed Honey Glazed Chicken Cutlets



This crispy outside and  moist & tender  inside chicken cutlet is a perfect meal option to have when you need a fast and simple yet an extremely delicious snack or dinner recipe for your family. The recipe makes deep fried  chicken breast fillet with a surprise of cheese filling sealed inside  coated with a  sweet and sour honey garlic sauce. 


Ingredients:
Large boneless chicken breasts- 5 nos
Egg 2 nos
Chilli sauce 2tsp
Milk 2 tbsp
All purpose flour- 1/2 cup
Cajun seasoning ( or mixture of 1/4 tsp  of each Cumin powder, chili powder, garlic powder, paprika, Black pepper and oregano)
Salt
Black pepper- 1 tsp
ground ginger
Chili powder
Cheddar Cheese grated (filling)-100 gms
Oil for frying
Chopped spring onion and sesame seeds for garnishing

 For Honey Garlic sauce

Honey- 2 tablespoons
Garlic- 4 cloves minced
Soy sauce- 1 tablespoons
pepper powder-1/2 teaspoon
Tomato sauce- 1 tablespoon
Cornstarch-1 tablespoon

Method:

1. Sprinkle chicken evenly with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Keep it aside for 30 minutes.
Cut each fillet into two halves.

2. Take egg, chili sauce and milk in a bowl and add a pinch of salt whisk together to make a batter.

3. Hold  the chicken and cut a slit in 1 side of each chicken breast to form a pocket. Spoon 1 table spoon cheddar Cheese into each pocket.

4. In a large bowl, combine flour and Cajun seasoning, salt and mix together.Now Working one at a time, dredge cheese stuffed chicken breast piece into flour mixture and then dip into eggs batter, then dredge in flour mixture again, pressing  is required to get an even coating.

5. Heat oil in a skillet enough for deep frying, add chicken pieces to it, 2 or 3 at a time, and fry until evenly golden and crispy, about 3-4 minutes on each side. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.

6.To make the sweet and sour sauce, in a medium saucepan  add 1 tablespoon of oil.Turn the heat down to slightly medium. combine honey, crushed garlic, pepper powder and soy sauce and Tomato sauce. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and 1/4 cup water and add to the sauce. Stir mixture into the saucepan until thickened.
Add the fried chicken  and turn to coat in the sauce.Remove from stove immediately. Place chicken on plates and drizzle over remaining sauce in order to get a perfect glazed look.
Garnish with sesame seed serve with boiled and stir fried veggies.





Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Chicken Chop (Cutlet) Bengali style

Chicken Chop (Chicken cutlet) is a very famous street food item which most of the Bengalis miss dearly during evening snack time especially during monsoon and winter season and also when friends make a visit on weekends for pure "Bengali Adda". 

Though chicken chop/cutlet/Croquette are popular in many places but the preparations are different with respect to each place and so is the taste. The recipe I am going to share is one of those inherited recipes from my mother over the years and is very popular in my native place Agartala. It tastes awesome and easy to make too. Let’s go to the recipe.


Chicken Cutlet

Ingredients:

For stuffing (Pur)


  • Chicken boneless 250 gms
  • Onion 3 large (finely chopped)
  • Garlic paste 2 tsp
  • Ginger pate 2 tsp
  • Green Chilli 5 to 6  chopped
  • Turmeric powder 1 tsp
  • Cumin powder ½ tsp
  • Garam masala powder 1 tsp
  • Potato Boiled (adding salt) mashed 3 to 4
  • Mustard oil  3 tbsp
  • Roasted cumin powder 1 tsp
  • Cornflour 2 tsp
  • Salt as per taste
  • Oil for frying
For batter:
  • Egg 2 nos
  • Corn flour 1 tsp
  • Salt one pinch
For coating:
  • Bread crumb 1 cup (I have used homemade as I don’t find it more often and making it  at home is very easy. Take 5 to 6 Rusk biscuit/ bread toast and blend it in mixture and you can get freshly made bread crumb)
  • Salt one pinch
  • Black pepper powder ½ tsp

Method:

  1. Clean and washed boneless chicken and cut into very small pieces. Now take it in a pressure cooker and add 1 cup of water and ½ tsp salt. Pressure cook it upto 2 whistles. One the pressure is released pour it in a strainer and strain the excess water.
  2. Take a pan and heat 2 tbsp of Mustard oil . Add chopped onion and fried till it turn golden. Now add ginger and garlic paste and chopped green chillis, turmeric powder and cumin powder. Fry the masala for few minutes and add little water while frying.
  3. When the masala separates oil after frying, add boiled chicken pieces and  and mix it  nicely. Add salt and garam masala and then fry the whole filling for 6 to 7 minutes till the chicken is cooked properly.  Once cooked shift the chicken mixture in a bowl. And let it cool completely.
  4. Heat 1 tbsp of mustard oil in the same pan and add ½ tsp of garlic paste. Now add the mashed potato, roasted cumin powder and 1 tsp of corn flour. Fry the mashed potato for 5 to 6 minutes til it gives a nice aroma. Shift the mixture in a bowl.
  5. Take a small portion of mashed potato mixture and make a round ball. Now make small a case and stuff it with little of chicken mixture now carefully cover it to make smooth ball. You can wither shape them as round chop or oblong shaped chop as I have done.
  6. Dip each chop in Egg batter and then roll into bread crumb coating. Now it is ready to deep fry.
  7. Fry the chop in hot oil til it turns golden brown in color.
  8. Remove it with slotted spoon on a tissue paper to drain excess oil.

Serve it hot and crisp and enjoy this delicious evening snack with tomato sauce or kasundi.

Achaari chicken ( with Raw mango pickle)

Whenever the question comes across my mind “ what to eat when I am so bored with everything I cook”, I start experimenting tweaking different recipes available in internet and comes out with some innovative variation of that. The recipe shared below is also an outcome of such experiment where I tried my own variation to the traditional “Achaari chicken” and it became a  delightful surprise for me and my friends who are too  hunting  for  a completely different style chicken curry. 

  Traditional Achaari chicken curry is a spicy, tangy and extremely aromatic thick chicken gravy which contains all spices used in Pickle and hence the name Achaari (pickle). My version is little different and simple where I have used Raw Mango Pickle or “Aam ka achar”instead of using much additional spices and that makes it quick and easy to prepare.

 If you are yet to taste this lip smacking ‘chicken curry with pickling spices’, go through the recipe here:



Achaari chicken


Ingredients:

1.              Chicken- 1 kg (Medium pieces preferably whole leg pieces)

2.              Onion finely chopped 1 large

3.              Onion paste of 2 medium Onions

4.              Tomato puree- of 1 large tomato

5.               Ginger garlic paste-2 tbsp

6.               Green chilly slit-4 nos.

7.               Turmeric powder- 1 tsp

8.               Coriander powder- 1 tsp

9.                Chili powder-1 1/2 tsp (as per spice tolerance)

10.              Raw mango pickle-2 and 1/2 tbsp (Store bought)

11.              Garam masala powder- 1/2 tsp

12.              Curd/yogurt- 1/2 cup

13.              Lemon juice-2 tbsp

14.              Dried Fenugreek leaves (optional)

15.              Salt-to taste

16.              Sugar as per taste


For seasoning:

1.              Mustard oil-4 tbsp

2.              Mustard seeds- 1/4 tsp

3.              Fennel seeds-1/4 tsp

4.              Cumin seeds- 1/4 tsp

5.              Fenugreek seeds- 1/4 tsp

6.              Black cumin seed (kalojeera/kalaunji)

                 You can use Paanch phoron (1 tbsp) if you have at home which is the mix of all these five above                          whole spices

7.              Bay leaf-1

Achaari Chicken
Add caption
Method:


  1. Marinate the cleaned chicken pieces with lemon juice, Mango pickle (you can use homemade or store-bought pickle and this is not a part of traditional recipe but adding pickle take the dish to a whole new level and give an amazing taste and aroma), Curd, salt and red chili powder. Keep it in refrigeration for at least an hour.
  2. Heat mustard oil in a pan, add all the seasoning ingredients one by one or Paanch phoron. Once it starts crackling, add chopped Onion and fry for a minute.
  3. Add onion paste and sauté until it turns golden. Now add Ginger and garlic paste and slit green chili. Fry the masala for 4 to 5 minutes on medium flame till raw smell goes off
  4.  Add turmeric powder, coriander powder and Tomato puree and sauté the mixture for another 4 to 5 minutes
  5.  Add marinated chicken and mix well and cook it on high flame for 4 to 5 minutes with continuous stirring. Cover and reduce the flame and let the chicken cook in its own gravy for 12-15 minutes.
  6. Add one cup of hot water and cook it covered for another 12 to 15 minutes until the chicken pieces becomes soft and oil separates and floats on top
  7. Adjust salt and sugar as per taste.
  8. Finally add garam masala powder and kasuri Methi powder. Switch off the flame and let it cover for few minutes and your lip-smacking Achari chicken is ready!



Friday, August 26, 2016

Loitta Maacher Jhuri ( Bombay Duck Fish Scrambled)

"Loitta fish" as we all know is very popular as Loitta shutki in East Bengal. Its only very recently I was introduced to the real Loitta fish behind the Shutki when my mother prepared this awesome “Loitta maacher Jhuri”.

Loitta fish is famous as Bombil or BombayDuck in Mumbai. It is a very soft and mushy fish with only one singleSpine. It can be cooked without frying it separately though it need a generous amount of oil for cooking and hence not a very healthy option, but this quick and simple dish is a sure shot way to please everyone in the family and guests.



Ingredients

  • 500 gms Loitta maach cleaned and washed (Without head) 
  • 2 Large sized Onion (finely chopped) 
  • 12 to 15 clove of Garlic (finely chopped or grated) 
  • 10 to 12 green chili’s (need to add more chili to enhance the taste) 
  • 1 and ½ tsp Turmeric powder 
  • 1 bunch of fresh coriander leaves (chopped) 
  • ½ tsp sugar Salt as per taste Mustard oil


Method
  • Cut the fish into 1-inch long pieces and take in a bowl and mix with turmeric powder and salt. Keep it aside.
  • Heat generous amount of mustard oil (around 4 tbsp) in a nonstick pan and add chopped Onion and then Garlic. Fry them in medium heat until golden yellow. 
  • Now add chopped green chili and fry them for 3 to 4 minutes and add the marinated fish.
  • Stir them very slowly in medium heat and since the fish will release enough water while cooking, it does not need any additional water. Keep frying with stirring slowly in regular interval until the fish cooked properly and the oil separates out from the mixture.
  • Now add additional salt if required and sugar and mix it well. Slowly remove the central bone from the fish pieces which is a very easy task.
  • Switch off the flame and garnish with chopped coriander leaves. Serve with piping hot boiled white rice.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Khowa Paneer Malai Kofta

Malai Kofta” the name itself reminds us of the restaurant style rich taste of the creamy gravy and the soft and tender kofta that just melt in your mouth. Though it is a very popular North Indian curry, it is visible in all Indian restaurant menus because of its special taste and aroma people prefers to have it during special occasions.

Kofta is basically fried cottage cheese (Paneer) ball and Malai is the thick cream based gravy in which koftas are dipped.

There are lots of variations of kofta, from non-vegetarian meat balls to pure veg versions. My version of kofta is pretty simple yet very smooth, soft and quite rich which are made mostly with paneer and Khoya/Mawa with little mashed veggies like potatoes, peas and stuffed with nuts and raisins. It goes very well with Tandoori Roti, Naan and Jeera Rice.



Ingredients:

For koftas:

  • 200 gms Paneer /Cottage cheese (grated)
  • 100 gms Khoya/Mawa (solidified Milk)
  • 2 Potatoes (boiled and grated)
  • ¼ cup frozen green peas (boiled)
  • 2 tbsp of  chopped cashewnuts and raisins 
  • 1 tbsp corn flour
  • ½ tsp cumin powder
  • ½ tsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • Salt as per taste
  • 1 tbsp fresh coriander (chopped)
  • Oil to fry koftas

For gravy:

  • 2 large onion (chopped)
  • 1 tbsp gingergarlic paste
  • 2 tomatoes ( chopped)
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp Red chili powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala powder
  • ½ tsp whole cumin seed
  • 3 tbsp cashew paste (Thick)
  • 1 cup cream (200 gms)
  • 1 bunch fresg coriander leaves
  • Sugar as per taste
  • Salt as per taste.
  • Oil
  • 1 tbsp butter



Method:

For making Kofta:

  1. Take khoya and grated paneer in a plate and mash it smooth with hand. Add grated boiled veggies like potato and peas (veggies should be well strained so that there is no water left in that else the balls can break while frying).  Now add corn flour, cumin powder, coriander powder, Red chili powder, chopped coriander, salt  and sugar and mix  it well  and knead it  into firm and smooth dough.
  2. Pick a small amount of dough and roll it in hand to get round shape of kofta ball. Now press it at the center and place two raisins and a few pieces of broken nuts at the center of flattened ball. Close it and roll it again to make perfect round balls without any crack. Make all the koftas in similar fashion and keep it ready for frying.
  3. Heat oils in a pan and deep fry all the koftas in low and then medium flame until they become golden brown in color evenly on all sides. Stir the koftas very slowly while frying otherwise they can break into pieces. Take it out and keep aside. If koftas break while frying add some more corn flour to the mixture. 

For making Gravy:

  1. Take flat bottomed pan and add 2 tbsp of oil. Add chopped onion and fry until it turns golden in color. Now add Ginger garlic paste and fry for a couple of minutes. Now add chopped tomatoes, stir well and cook for 5 to 6 minutes.
  2. When the tomatoes  becomes soft add turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, red chili powder and mix well all the spices with Onion and Tomatoes and cook till oil gets separated from the spices. Switch off the flame and let the mixture cool.
  3. Take the cooked mixture in a blender and make a smooth paste.
  4. Heat 2 tbsp butter in the same pan and add whole cumin seeds when the cumin seeds starts spluttering, add the blended mixture paste. Add little water and bring it to boil. Once the mixture starts boiling add cashew paste . Now add salt and little sugar. Stir for 3 to 4 minutes and then reduce the flame and add fresh cream or Malai and you can see the light golden color the gravy has achieved.
  5. Stir the mixture and let it cook for another 2 to 3 minutes in medium flame until one boil so that the gravy become rich and creamy.  Add prepared koftas into it cover each kofta nicely with gravy. switch off the flame and finally add garam masala and chopped coriander leaves. Cover it for some time so that flavor of garam masala and coriander leaves mix well in the gravy which gives a nice aroma to the dish.  


Take it out in a bowl and garnish with some cream and coriander leaves and your scrumptious Malai Kofta is ready to serve with hot naan .

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Healthy Oats Upma


It’s been more than 45 days since I had uploaded my last blog post. And, what a terribly hectic period this has been! There was immense work pressure in the office. To add to the woes, my elder daughter’s school too scheduled their exams in this period.

Well, daughter’s exams have got finished and work pressure in the office, too has kind of eased off. The biggest casualty in this period was cooking. I would virtually fix dinner with whatever I could get near me at that time.

And for the breakfast, it was Oats, Oats & Oats. Blame it on the quick & non-fussy way it gets cooked or the healthy-lots of fibre-low calorie tag associated with that. The last Sunday, I said enough is enough. I need to make a breakfast which my kids & hubby would love to have.

For some reasons, my mind was so clouded with Oats, I wondered if I could make something interesting out of Oats only. Thus was born Oats Upma. Try this out, I bet you’ll love it.



Ingredients


Oats – 200 gms
Onion – 1 Large, chopped
Carrot – 1 medium, grated
Green peas – ¼ cup (optional)
Green chilli –  3 to 4, chopped
Peanut – 2 Tbsp
Chana daal – 1 Tbsp
Curry leaves – 8 to 10
Mustard – ½ tsp
Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
Chilli powder – ½ tsp
Coriander leaves – 1 bunch, chopped
Sugar – ½ tsp
Salt as per taste



Method

Heat a pan and dry roast the oats for 3 to 4 minutes with constant stirring so as to avoid burning of the oats. Remove it and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan, add peanut and fry for 2 minutes. Add Chana daal in that and stir fry for half a minute. Add Mustard and Curry leaves. When it starts spluttering, add onion & green chili and fry for some time. 

Add grated carrot and peas and fry for about 2 to 3 minutes. Add turmeric powder, chilli powder and salt and mix well.

Now add roasted oats and mix well. Reduce the flame and sprinkle  water slowly, little at a time so that it doesn't become sticky. Cover with a lid and cook it for a minute and   then add some more water continue to stir with spatual till the oats become soft but not sticky. Add 1/2 tsp of Sugar, fried peanuts & roasted chana daal and mix well

Finally add chopped coriander. Switch off the flame and keep it covered for few minutes.
Oats Upma is ready to serve for a healthy yet tasty breakfast.






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