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Friday, October 14, 2011

KARANJI OR GHUGHRA


Very popular Diwali sweet, I tried this out for the first time after writing down a recipe from my Maasi ... the ghughras have turned out delicious, so here's the recipe

RECIPE MAKES ABOUT 30 KARANJIS/GHUGHRAS

INGREDIENTS FOR THE COVER

2 cups All purpose flour (Maida)
4 tablespoons melted Dalda ghee
1 teaspoon rava (sooji)
3/4 cup warm water

In a bowl, add the dry ingredients first - mix all purpose flour, melted dalda ghee, rava and then add warm water to knead a very soft dough.

Keep covered for 1 hour.

INGREDIENTS FOR THE FILLING

1 cup rava (very fine sooji)
1/2 cup ghee
1/2 cup almonds (you can crush them into a powder by using the Anjali Nut and Chilly cutter or slice the almonds & pulse in a mixer to make a coarse powder
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon elaichi (cardamom) powder
(You can add dry or fresh shredded coconut, any other dry fruits or raisins if you like to the filling)

MAKING THE FILLING MIXTURE

Heat ghee on 4/10 flame in a non-stick pan till it melts completely and is warm.

Add 1 cup rava (very fine sooji) and keep stirring the rava till it changes color to light pink. This takes about 5-7 minutes. Switch off the gas, take the pan off the hot stove. Keep it undisturbed on a counter to cool down completely. This takes about 45 minutes.

After rava cools down completely, add almond powder, powdered sugar, elaichi and mix well.

The filling mixture is ready.

MAKING KARANJI/GHUGHRAS

1. Divide the dough prepared for the cover in 30 equal portions, flatten them like we make for puris. Keep covered to ensure they do not dry out.

2. Keep a greased tray ready to place the karanji/ghughras handy.

3. Take a very thin kitchen towel big enough to cover the tray. Soak the towel in water, drain out all the water such that the towel is just damp.

4. Roll 1 portion of the cover dough into a small thin puri. Place a spoonful of the filling mixture inside one semi-circle side of the puri. Apply water or milk or a thin paste of all purpose flour & water mixed together to seal the karanji/ghughra on one half side.

Fold the puri into a semi-circle. Press the edges tightly with your fingertips. You can lift the karanji/ghughra & add the fluted design to the edges. Or you can use the karanji maker to fill the karanjis.

5. Keep the karanji/ghughra in the greased tray. Cover the tray with the damp kitchen towel to prevent the karanjis from drying out.

Repeat for all karanjis.

6. Heat oil on 4/10 flame for 10 minutes. First add 1 karanji & fry it in hot oil till karanji cover is cooked till white or very light pink in color. Line a tray with paper towels & place the karanji in the tray.

Make small batches and fry the remaining karanjis. Let the karanjis completely cool down, you can leave them open in the tray for 5-6 hours and then pack them in an airtight container.

Prepare and enjoy !!!

Monday, September 26, 2011

~ SIMPLE NO FUSS VEG CUTLETS ~


Veg Cutlets are an anytime treat ~ serve as an Appetizer when you are expecting friends or as a Burger packed with some more veggies ...

RECIPE SERVES 4

INGREDIENTS
2 boiled potatoes
2 cups mix vegetables - 3/4 cup sliced french beans, 1 carrot cut in small cubes, 1/2 cup peas, 1/2 cup corn
2 teaspoons salt (to taste)
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder (haldi)
1 teaspoon Red chilli powder
1 tablespoon garlic paste
3/4 tablespoon green chilli paste
1/2 tablespoon ginger paste
3 tablespoons fresh cut cilantro (dhania)
bowl of water & 5 slices of white bread
Oil for frying

TO SERVE CUTLETS AS A BURGER - Pack of burger buns, butter, cut 8-10 lettuce leaves/cabbage leaves, cut 1 red onion in round slices, cut 1 tomato in thin round slices
Cilantro (dhania) chutney
Tomato Ketchup

METHOD

1. Boil 2 potatoes to 4 whistles in a pressure cooker. Let the cooker cool down completely. Peel potatoes and mash them in a big rimmed plate.

2. Half-fill a saucepan with water. Add 1 teaspoon salt, pinch of turmeric powder and let the water come to a rolling boil. Once water starts boiling, add french beans, carrots, peas and corn. Cook till tender. Insert a knife in french beans & carrot to check this.

Spread a clean kitchen towel in 2 layers on the counter. Once vegetables are cooked, drain all the water out of the vegetables using a strainer & spread the vegetables on a clean kitchen towel to cool down. The kitchen towel will also absorb the excess moisture left in the vegetables & prevent cutlets from breaking while frying in hot oil.

3. Add all the masalas to the mashed potato

1.5 teaspoons salt (to taste)
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder (haldi)
1 teaspoon Red chilli powder
1 tablespoon garlic paste
3/4 tablespoon green chilli paste
1/2 tablespoon ginger paste
3 tablespoons fresh cut cilantro (dhania)

Fill water in a bowl. Take 5 slices of white bread, Dip 1 slice of bread in the bowl of water, immediately flip on the other side, hold the bread slice on your palm and fold in half, press firmly and squeeze out all the water from the bread slice. Add it to the mashed potato mixture for binding the cutlets & to prevent them from breaking while frying in hot oil. Repeat for the remaining 4 slices.

Using your hand, mix the mashed potato, masalas & soaked bread slices till the spices blend well. Spread the mixture in an even layer on the plate. Add the steamed vegetables to this mixture. Very lightly, mix again to prevent vegetables from breaking.

Take off all the potato mixture on your hand with a blunt knife.

If you are going to serve these as Appetizer Cutlets, then divide the mixture in 16 equal parts. Apply oil on the palm of both the hands. Roll into a ball & press lightly to make a flat patty. Or you can oil a plate, press the mixture in a medium thick layer & cut into desired shape with a cookie cutter. Lightly grease a tray/plate with oil and start placing the cutlets on the tray/plate.

If you are going to serve the Cutlets as a Burger, then divide the mixture in 8 equal parts. Apply oil on the palm of both the hands. Roll into a ball & press lightly to make a flat patty. Lightly grease a tray/plate with oil and start placing the cutlets on the tray/plate.

If you are going to fry the cutlets later, then keep the cutlets tray in the refrigerator. These will keep the cutlets firm till they are ready to deep fry. You can also prepare the mixture the earlier evening & fry the next morning as a hot breakfast snack.

3. Heat oil on medium high heat for 10-12 minutes. Add cutlets in small batches and fry till golden brown.

Serve Appetizer Cutlets with cilantro (dhania) chutney and tomato ketchup.

To serve as a Burger, serve hot cutlets with Burger buns, butter, fresh cut lettuce/cabbage leaves, red onion, tomato slices, cilantro (dhania) chutney & tomato ketchup.

Prepare & enjoy !!!

~ LEMONADE ~


Nothing can beat a chilled cool glass of lemonade on a hot and sultry day ...

RECIPE SERVES 3

INGREDIENTS

3 glasses water (400ml each X 3 glasses)
3 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons Country Time Lemonade powder
2 tablespoons Lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cumin (jeera) powder
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds (saunf) powder
pinch of black pepper

METHOD
1. Add all the above ingrdients to a bowl.
2. Mix well till sugar and lemonade powder dissolves.
3. Pour in 3 tall glasses. Serve chilled with crushed ice cubes.

Prepare & enjoy !!!

Monday, September 19, 2011

~ MOOLI PARATHAS ~


Radish (Mooli) Parathas are very simple to prepare and very delicious to eat. Shredded mooli and the radish greens on the mooli impart a unique flavor to these parathas that makes them a very popular paratha recipe ...

RECIPE MAKES 12 PARATHAS ~ SERVES 5

Grate 3 cups of radish. In a dish, sprinkle 1 teaspoon salt, mix salt in the radish lightly with your fingers, let radish ooze out water for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, pick up a fistful of mooli in your palm and press to remove excess water. Keep the water aside to add to the dough later.

If the radish bunch has fresh green leaves, cut 2 cups of loosely packed radish leaves (The leaves should not be thorny) Pluck out the tender part of leaves, discard the thick stems & veins. Put the leaves in a sieve, wash well under running water 3-4 times. (If radish without leaves is available, then use only grated radish)

In a big bowl, add the following ingredients
5 cups whole wheat flour
2/3 cup oil
6 teaspoons salt
1/8 teaspoon haldi
3 teaspoons Red Chilli Powder
1 teaspoon Ajwain seeds (ajmo)
1 teaspoon cumin seeds (jeera)
2 tablespoons Garlic paste
1.5 tablespoon Green Chilli paste
1/2 tablespoon Ginger paste
2 cups cut, washed radish leaves
grated radish with mooli juice squeezed out completely

Mix all the dry ingredients very well & blend all the spices with the flour.

Add 1 cup of the mooli juice that was squeezed out earlier to knead a soft dough. Knead well for 2-3 mins.

Apply oil on the dough & let it rest for 15 minutes.

Divide in 12 equal portions & press flat like a patty.

Take 1 portion, roll into a medium thick paratha. You will need some flour for rolling & dusting.

Heat a non-stick flat pan on little more than medium flame. Once its hot, add the paratha to the pan. In few mins, the color of paratha will change & you see some bubbles formation.

Flip paratha on the other side & let it cook for few more minutes on the other side too.

Apply less than a teaspoon of oil on top side of the paratha. Flip & press with the spatula that has a big flat base so the air bubble expands & paratha puffs up on the pan itself. There will be golden brown spots & should be evenly cooked.

Flip on the other side & let the paratha absorb remaining oil thats left on the pan.

Serve hot with chilled yogurt, pickle and cabbage & chilli stir-fry - Recipe link http://falguni-jerajani.blogspot.com/2010/04/simple-cabbage-stir-fry-with-carrot.html

Can be made ahead before serving as they remain soft due to pan frying. Stays fresh for upto 24 hours at room temperature. Makes a good lunch or snack box filling too.

Prepare & enjoy !!!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

~ POHA ~


Very simple, fast to cook, good to eat Maharashtrian snack that can be prepared with various veggie combinations ...

RECIPE SERVES 4

INGREDIENTS FOR TADKA/VAGHAAR
4 tablespoons Oil
1/4 teaspoon rai
1 potato cut in cubes
1 tomato cut in cubes
1/2 onion cut in cubes
2 tablespoons green chillies cut in thin slices
pinch of hing
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
(Optional - you can also add curry leaves, dry red chilli, roasted peanuts, 1 cup mix veggies like corn, carrot & peas to the Tadka if you like more flavor)

INGREDIENTS TO ADD AFTER VEGGIES ARE COOKED
4 cups Thick Poha
2 tablespoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon salt
1.5 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup fresh cut cilantro/dhania for garnish (you can also garnish with shredded coconut or dry coconut powder if you like coconut flavor)

METHOD

1. Heat 4 tablespoons oil in a pan on medium high heat. Once oil is hot, add 1/4 teaspoon rai. After rai crackles, add
2 tablespoons green chillies cut in thin slices
pinch of hing
1 potato cut in cubes
1 tomato cut in cubes
1/2 onion cut in cubes
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
Mix well. Lower the flame to medium heat, cover with a lid half filled with water.

2. In a meshed bowl, add 4 cups Thick Poha. Keep the bowl under running water, run your fingers through the poha, soak poha completely. Turn off the water and set the bowl aside.

3. In about 10 minutes, the poha will absorb all the water and fluff up.

4. Add 2 tablespoons sugar, 1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder & 1 teaspoon salt to the poha in the bowl and mix well.

5. Check the veggies that are cooking, insert a knife in the potato to check if veggies are cooked.

6. Then add the poha, 1.5 tablespoons lemon juice and mix well.

7. Lower the flame to a very low setting and let the poha and spices blend well. Keep the poha covered with a lid. Keep stirring the poha every 2 minutes. After about 5 minutes, turn off the flame. Garnish with 1/4 cup fresh cut cilantro/dhania.

8. Serve hot with tea or coffee.

Prepare and enjoy !!!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

GUJARATI DAL (FOR DAL-RICE)

A traditional Gujarati thaali is incomplete without this delicious Toovar Dal curry. Served with chapati, sabzi, also a flavorful addition to steamed basmati rice ... this Dal is fast to cook, so delicious to eat ..

GUJARATI DAL (FOR DAL-RICE) ~ RECIPE SERVES 4

INGREDIENTS FOR COOKING IN A PRESSURE COOKER
1 cup Toovar Dal
1/4 cup Plain whole peanuts
2 Tomatoes finely chopped
4 cups water

INGREDIENTS FOR TADKA
2 tablespoons oil
1/4 teaspoon methi (fenugreek) seeds
1/4 teaspoon rai (mustard) seeds
8-10 fresh curry leaves
3 dry red chillies or 1 teaspoon dry red chilli flakes
pinch of hing

INGREDIENTS TO BE ADDED TO DAL AFTER TADKA
4 cups water
3/4 tablespoon salt
1/8 teaspoon haldi
1 teaspoon Red chilli powder
2 teaspoons Dhaniajeera powder
1 teaspoon ginger paste or finely chopped fresh ginger
1 long spicy green chilli, slit vertically in half
1/3 cup jaggery (gud)
1/4 cup fresh cut cilantro for garnishing

METHOD

1. Add 1 cup Toovar Dal, 1/4 cup Plain whole peanuts, 2 Tomatoes finely chopped, 4 cups water in a pressure cooker and cook to 4 whistles.

2. After cooker completely cools down, prepare ingredients for the Tadka. Heat 2 tablespoons oil on medium high heat. Once oil is hot, lower to flame to medium heat, add
1/4 teaspoon methi (fenugreek) seeds
1/4 teaspoon rai (mustard) seeds
8-10 fresh curry leaves
3 dry red chillies or 1 teaspoon dry red chilli flakes
pinch of hing

3. Add cooked dal and give it a good stir. Add the following
4 cups water
3/4 tablespoon salt
1/8 teaspoon haldi
1 teaspoon Red chilli powder
2 teaspoons Dhaniajeera powder
1 teaspoon ginger paste or finely chopped fresh ginger
1 long spicy green chilli, slit vertically in half
1/3 cup jaggery (gud)
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice (optional) - if you prefer a more tangy taste

4. Churn well with a blender or churner. Let the dal boil once on medium high heat, once it boils, lower the flame to 4/10 intensity and let the dal and masalas cook for about 12-15 mins.

5. Add cilantro for garnish, give a good stir. Serve hot with chapati, sabzi or steamed hot basmati rice.

Prepare & enjoy !!!