Friday, March 30, 2012

Eggplant in Mustard Sauce / Begun Basanti

A combination of turmeric, yellow mustard and yoghurt gives this curry a beautiful golden color.

Small Eggplants - 12
Salt, sugar, turmeric for marination
Mustard Oil - 2 tbsp
Nigella Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Green Chili - 4, each broken into half
Plain Yogurt - 1.5 cups (reduce the quantity if you want less gravy)
Yellow Mustard Powder - 2 tsp
Ginger paste - 1 tsp
Turmeric - 1/2 tsp
Red Chili Powder - a pinch
Roasted Coriander Powder - 2 tsp
Raw Sugar - 1 tsp

Cut each eggplant lengthwise into half. Sprinkle salt, a little raw sugar and two pinches of turmeric. Mix well and marinate for 15 minutes.

Mix yoghurt, mustard powder, salt, sugar, turmeric, ginger paste, red chili powder, coriander powder and beat well with a whisk to make a smooth sauce. Keep aside.

Heat 1 tbsp mustard oil in a skillet on medium high. Add the marinated eggplants in a single layer. (Initially when the eggplants start cooking, they absorb all the oil. But slowly as they get cooked, they release most of the oil back).  Cook till the bottom side browns slightly. Turn over and cook on the other side for a minute. Then add quarter cup of water, reduce the heat and cover the pan and cook till the eggplants are cooked. Remove and keep aside.

In the same pan, heat the remaining 1 tbsp mustard oil. Add nigella seeds and green chili. Reduce the flame and slowly add the yoghurt sauce to the skillet while mixing continuously with a wooden spoon.

Let the sauce cook for 5 to 10 minutes till oil separates from the sauce. Now add the cooked eggplants and mix well. If required add a little bit of water. Bring the sauce to a boil and remove from heat.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Tomato Salsa, "On the Border" Style

Roma Tomato - 3, chopped
Red Onion - 2 tbsp, chopped
Jalapeno - 1, seeds removed and chopped
Garlic Cloves - 2, chopped
Cilantro - a handful, chopped
Lime Juice - 2 tsp
Roasted Cumin Powder - 1/2 tsp
Paprika - 1/2 tsp (optional, only if you want a bright red salsa)

Put all the ingredients in a blender. Blend till everything is mixed together. Leave aside in the fridge for at least half an hour for all the flavors to come together.

Serve with homemade tortilla chips.

Apple Crisp, gluten free

Granny Smith Apple - 2
Lemon Juice - 2 tsp
Raw Honey - 1 tbsp
Cinnamon Powder - 1/4 tsp
Dried Cranberries - 1 tsp
Arrowroot Powder - 1.5 tsp

Almond Flour - 3 tbsp
Sliced Raw Almonds - 1 tbsp
Rolled Oats - 1 tbsp (optional, if not using increase the quantity of almond flour)
Coconut Palm Sugar - 1 tbsp
Butter - 2 tbsp or Coconut Oil - 1 tbsp
Salt - a pinch
Cinnamon powder - 1/4 tsp

Mix arrowroot powder with 3 tsp of water. Add cinnamon powder, lemon juice, honey and mix together. Keep aside.

Peel and core the apples and dice them into small pieces. Add the cranberries and pour the arrowroot mixture over the apples. Mix well and and pour into a  16 oz ramekin and keep aside for 15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350F.

Mix almond flour, oats, salt, coconut sugar, sliced almonds, cinnamon powder together. Add cold butter to make a crumbly mixture and put the mixture over the apples.

Place the ramekin on a baking tray and bake for 40 minutes till the top is golden brown and the juices turn bubbly.

Adapted from

Sending this recipe to the event Cook.Eat.Delicious - Desserts happening @ Sensible Vegetarian.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Coconut Ladoo

Fresh grated coconut - 1 cup or Frozen Shredded Coconut - 12 oz
Dark Jaggery - 1 cup approximately, depending on the quality of the jaggery and sweetness desired
Homemade Mawa / Thickened Milk - 2 tbsp
Ghee / Clarified Butter - 1/2 tsp

Place the grated coconut or the defrosted shredded coconut and the jaggery in a large kadai and put it on medium flame.

Initially the jaggery will release a lot of liquid. Continue to stir once in a while.

Slowly the coconut gets cooked and the mixture becomes thick and bubbly. Now stir continuously till the mixture is almost dried and leaves the sides of the kadai. Add the mawa and cook for five minutes more.

Remove it from heat and leave it aside to cool down a little.

Once it has cooled down enough to handle, apply a little ghee to both the palms. Take a little mixture and press to form a small round ball. Do this for the entire mixture. Cool completely, the balls harden a little when cooled. Store in an airtight container.

Sending this recipe to the event Cook.Eat.Delicious - Desserts happening @ Sensible Vegetarian.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Cabbage with Green Peas / Bandhakopir tarkari

Cabbage - 1/2 head of a medium sized cabbage, finely chopped
Oil - 1 tbsp
Cumin Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Cinnamon - 1 inch stick
Bay leaf - 1
Green Chili - 4
Ginger - 1/2 inch, grated
Turmeric - a pinch
Raw Sugar - 1/2 tsp
Roasted coriander cumin powder - 1/2 tsp (optional)
Frozen Peas - a handful

Heat oil in a skillet. Add the cumin seeds, cinnamon stick and bay leaf.

Once the cumin seeds begin to sizzle, add the green chili. Saute for a few seconds.

Now add the chopped cabbage, grated ginger, salt and turmeric. Mix well. Cover with a lid and cook for 10 minutes. Do remove the cover in between and toss everything so that the cabbage doesn't get burnt at the bottom.

When the cabbage is half cooked, add the green peas, sugar and the roasted spice, if using. Mix well and continue to cook for another 5 to 10 minutes.

Serve hot with steamed brown rice and dal.

Mator Dal / Yellow Split Peas Soup

Mator Dal / Yellow Split Peas - 3/4 cup
Turmeric - a pinch
Oil - 1 tbsp
Cumin Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Green Chili - 4
Garlic Cloves - 2, finely sliced
Onion - 1/2 cup, finely chopped
Tomato - 1, chopped
Cilantro - a handful, chopped

Wash and cook mator dal in the pressure cooker/rice cooker with a little turmeric, salt and sufficient water. Mash well with a fork and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan. Add the cumin seeds. Once they start sizzling, add the sliced garlic and green chilies. Saute for a few seconds.

Then add the chopped onion and saute till soft. Then add the chopped tomato and cook till the mixture becomes mushy.

Add the cooked dal and a cup of water. Mix well and check seasoning. Bring it to boil and cook till desired consistency is reached. Garnish with chopped cilantro on top and serve.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Oats Coconut Almond Raisin Cookies, gluten free

Old fashioned oats - 1 cup + 1 cup
Frozen grated coconut - 1/2 cup (bring at room temperature)
Almond Meal - 1 cup
Raisins - 1/3 cup
Coconut Palm Sugar - 1/2 cup or Maple Syrup - 1/2 cup
Baking Soda - 1/2 tsp
Salt - 1/4 tsp
Melted Butter - 3 tbsp or Coconut Oil - 1/3 cup

Put 1 cup of oats in a food processor and grind to a fine powder.

Add almond meal, oats powder, coconut palm sugar, 1 cup whole old fashioned oats, baking soda, salt and mix well.

Add the raisins, grated coconut, butter and mix well to form a dough. The wetness from the coconut and the butter will help to bind the dough. If the dough is a little dry, add more butter or coconut oil.

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Make small balls of the dough, flatten them a little and place on the parchment paper.

Bake for 10 to 15 minutes.

Cool and store in an airtight container. These cookies have a soft, a little crumbly and chewy texture. Makes around 30 small cookies.

Adapted from

Sending this recipe to the event Cook.Eat.Delicious - Desserts happening @ Sensible Vegetarian.


Mawa Barfi / Milk Fudge with Coconut Palm Sugar

Organic Whole Milk - 1/2 gallon
Coconut Palm Sugar - 1/2 cup
Pistachios - a tbsp, chopped

Bring the milk to a boil in a heavy bottomed pan. Simmer and cook on very low heat for around two hours. Keep stirring the milk so that it doesn't stick to the bottom.

After 2 hours, the milk gets very thick. At this point we have to continuously stir otherwise it can get burnt easily. Add the coconut palm sugar and continue to cook for atleast10 more minutes till the mixture comes together almost like a soft ball. Coconut palm sugar is more sticky than normal sugar and takes more time to dry. So we have to cook a little more to make the barfis.

Pour the thickened milk on a greased tray. Sprinkle chopped pistachios on top and cut into desired shape after it cools completely. Store in an airtight container. Makes around 12 barfis.

Sending this recipe to the event Cook.Eat.Delicious - Desserts happening @ Sensible Vegetarian.

Crispy Deep Fried Okra

Tender Okra - 20
Besan /Chickpea Flour - 4 tbsp
Brown Rice Flour - 1 tbsp
Baking Soda - a pinch
Turmeric - a pinch
Red Chili Powder - 1/4 tsp
Ajwain / Carom Seeds - 1/4 tsp

Oil for deep frying
Chaat masala for sprinkling over fried okra (optional)

Wash the okra and dry completely. Cut both ends off each okra. Then cut each okra lengthwise into 4 thin strips.

Make a thick pancake like batter by mixing chickpea flour, rice flour, salt, baking soda, turmeric and red chili powder.

Heat oil over medium high in a wok / kadai. Dip each strip of okra in the batter and gently slide in the hot oil. Fry the okras in batches till crispy and golden brown in color.

Remove and place on paper towel to soak extra oil. Sprinkle with chaat masala and serve immediately.

Methi Begun / Fenugreek Leaves with Eggplant

Methi / Fenugreek Leaves - 1 bunch, chop the leaves and only the tender stems and discard the rest
Baby Eggplants - 15, diced
Oil - 1 tbsp
Nigella Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Methi / Fenugreek seeds - 1/4 tsp
Green Chili - 4, chopped
Turmeric - a pinch

Heat oil in a skillet. Add chopped green chili, nigella seeds and methi seeds.

After a few seconds add the diced eggplant and a pinch of turmeric and salt. Toss well. Lower the heat and cover and cook (remove the cover and toss once in a while so that eggplants don't get stuck to the bottom of the pan) till the eggplants are soft and cooked.

Add the chopped methi leaves. Mix well with the eggplants. Cook for a few minutes more till the methi leaves become tender.

Adapted from

Friday, March 16, 2012

Mixed Vegetable Curry in Coconut Milk Sauce

Mixed Vegetable - 3 cups (I used 20 green beans, 2 carrots, 2 red radish, handful green peas, 1 small potato, sweet potato)
Oil - 2 tbsp (preferably coconut oil)
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Curry Leaves - 15
Ginger - 1/2 inch, grated
Green Chili - 8
Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
Coconut Milk - 10 oz (I used Trader Joe's Light Coconut Milk which is natural and without any added preservatives or color or flavor)
Greek Yoghurt - 3 tbsp

Cut the vegetables into longish, thick 1 inch pieces and keep aside.

Heat 1 tbsp oil in a big pan. Add the cumin seeds and half of the green chilies.
Once the cumin seeds begin to sizzle, add all the vegetables except frozen green peas. Sprinkle some salt and turmeric and grated ginger. Cook on medium low flame till the vegetables are almost cooked.

Add the frozen peas and the coconut milk. Let the mixture come to a boil, check for seasoning and cook for a few minutes more. Remove from heat and add the beaten greek yoghurt and mix well.

Heat 1 tbsp oil in a small pan. Add the remaining curry leaves and green chilies, wait for a few seconds and then pour the hot oil over the gravy. Serve hot with steamed brown rice.

I am submitting this recipe for IndianFoodPalooza for March 2012

Yellow Mung Dal with Green Mango

Yellow Mung Dal - 3/4 cup
Raw Mango - 1/2
Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
Oil - 1 tbsp
Mustard Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Cumin Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Hing / Asafoetida - 2 pinches
Green Chili - 4, chopped
Dried Red Chili - 1
Garlic Cloves - 2, grated
Ginger - 1/2 tsp, grated
Curry Leaves - 5

Peel the mango and cut into small pieces. Add to the washed mung dal, place in a pan / cooker with 3 cups of water and cook till the dal is soft and completely cooked.

Heat oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds. Once they start popping, add cumin seeds, hing, green chili, red chili.

Then add the curry leaves, grated clove and garlic and saute on low fire for a minute.

Add the cooked dal and mango and mix well. Add a cup of water and bring it to boil. Cook till the desired consistency is reached.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Made from Scratch Corn Tortilla Chips

Masa Harina Corn Flour- 1 cup
Salt - 1/4 tsp
Water - 3/4 cup to 1 cup

Peanut Oil for deep frying

Makes around 6 small tortillas

Bring the water to a boil. Mix salt with the masa harina.

Pour the boiling water into the flour and mix with a fork.

Using your hands, knead the flour well for a few minutes till the dough is soft and springy. Adjust the water or flour to make sure that the dough is not dry, cracked or sticky. Sprinkle a tsp of warm water on the dough, cover with a damp cloth and let the dough rest for at least an hour.

Heat a cast iron griddle. Knead the dough again for a couple of minutes. Divide the dough into 2 inch balls. Using a rolling pin, press each ball between 2 pieces of plastic cling wrap to make a round flat tortilla. Place the tortilla on the hot skillet and cook (by pressing all around with a clean damp kitchen towel) till the top starts to look cooked and starts getting puffy.

Flip and cook on the other side. Remove and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan on medium high. Cut the tortilla into wedges and deep fry till crispy and golden brown on both sides.Remove on paper towel to soak excess oil. Alternatively, the wedges can be sprayed with olive oil and baked in a preheated oven at 350F for around 15 minutes till they turn crispy.

Cool and store in an airtight container. Serve with fresh guacamole or salsa.

Brown Rice Noodles with Broccoli and Tahini Sauce

This is a great way to eat broccoli. The entire dish is so tasty that inspite of large quantity of broccoli in it, you hardly notice it. The tahini sauce is a nice change from the usual chinese stir fry with soya sauce. The sesame lends it a nutty flavor and creamy texture.

Brown Rice Noodles - a handful
Broccoli - 3/4 lb, cut into thin long florets
Carrots - 2, cut into thin roundels
Ginger - 1 inch, cut into thin sticks
Garlic Cloves - 5, thinly sliced
Green Chili - 3, finely chopped
Peanut Oil - 1 tbsp

For sauce:
Tahini (Sesame Paste) - 2 tbsp
Water - 2 tbsp
Honey - 2 tsp
Soya Sauce - 2 tsp
Red Chili Flakes - 1 tsp
Rice Wine Vinegar - 1 tbsp
Scrambled Egg - 2 (optional)

Mix all the ingredients for sauce and keep aside.

Boil sufficient water and cook the noodles till done. Rinse with cold water and keep aside. (Ideally we should cook the noodles and the vegetables simultaneously so that the noodles can be drained and directly added to the almost cooked vegetable and sauce without waiting).

Heat oil in a wok. Add the chopped chilies, ginger and garlic. Saute for a few seconds till the garlic begins to change color.

Add the broccoli florets, carrots and salt. Cook on medium high heat till the broccoli florets are done but still crunchy.

Add the boiled noodles and tahini sauce. Mix everything well, check for seasoning and heat for a minute more. We can add some scrambled egg on top for extra protein. Serve immediately.

Sending this entry to Show Me Your HITS - Series # 2 ~ Fiber Rich Foods Event hosted by Sangeetha of Spicy Treats

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Cinnamon Raisin Almond Flour Bread, gluten free

Blanched Almond Flour - 11/2 cups
Arrowroot Powder - 3/4 cup
Golden Flax seed meal - 1/4 cup
Eggs - 4
Salt - 1/2 tsp
Baking Soda - 1/2 tsp
Apple Cider Vinegar - 1 tsp
Agave Nectar - 1 tbsp
Cinnamon Powder - 1/2 tsp
Nutmeg Powder - 1/4 tsp
Raisins - a handful
Butter for greasing loaf pan
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Combine almond flour, arrowroot, flax seed meal, raisins, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and baking soda in a bowl.
Beat the eggs with an electric beater for 5 minutes until frothy.

Stir agave and vinegar into eggs

Mix the dry ingredients into wet.

Line a 7.5" x 3.5" loaf pan with parchment paper. Grease the parchment paper and the sides of the pan liberally with butter.

Bake at 350º for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of loaf comes out clean.

Cool completely and cut into slices. Serve with a little butter and homemade jam or maple syrup.

Adapted from

Chana Masala / Chickpeas Curry

Dry Chickpeas / Garbanzo Beans - 1 cup
Oil - 1 tbsp
Onion - 1, finely chopped
Ginger - 1 inch, grated
Green Chilies - 4, finely chopped
Tomato - 2 big, grated
Roasted Coriander powder - 1/2 tsp
Roasted Cumin Powder - 1/2 tsp
Roasted Fennel Powder - 1/2 tsp
Red Chili powder - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
Homemade Garam Masala - 1/2 tsp
Aamchur / Dried Mango Powder - 1/2 tsp
Cilantro - for garnish

Soak the chickpeas overnight in plenty of water.  Drain the water, add fresh 3 cups of water and cook in the pressure cooker  till done. Keep aside along with the liquid.

Heat oil in a large saute pan. Then add onion and green chilies and cook till the onion becomes slightly caramelized.

Add the grated tomato, ginger, salt, sugar, turmeric, red chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, fennel powder, garam masala powder and cook till the tomato gets mushy and oil releases from the paste. This masala can be cooled and blended in a blender to make a thick gravy. Alternatively it can be left as it is.

Add the boiled chickpeas, cooking liquid and a cup of water. Bring it to boil, adjust salt and cook till the gravy thickens.

Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve over steamed brown rice.

Cannelini Beans Soup

Dry Cannelini Beans - 1/2 cup
Olive Oil - 1 tbsp
Yellow Onion - 1/2 cup, chopped
Garlic - 5 cloves, thinly sliced
Ginger - 1/2 inch, thinly julienned
Celery Sticks - 2, chopped
Carrots - 1, chopped
Dried Thyme - 1/4 tsp
Tomato - 2, grated
Water / Homemade vegetable Stock - 4 cups

Soak the beans overnight in plenty of water. Drain and keep aside.

Heat a pressure cooker pan. Add olive oil and the sliced garlic and ginger. Saute for a few seconds. Then add the chopped onion.

Cook for a minute and add chopped celery and carrots. Saute for a couple of minutes more.

Add grated tomato, thyme, soaked beans, salt and pepper. Mix everything well.

Add 4 cups of water and close the pressure cooker. Once full pressure is reached, lower the flame and cook for 15 minutes. Serve hot.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Matar Pulao / Green Peas Pulao

Brown Basmati Rice - 1 cup
Oil - 1 tbsp
Ghee / Clarified Butter - 1 tsp
Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp
Cinnamon - 1 inch stick
Cloves - 5
Whole Black Pepper - 10
Green Chili - 5, slit
Raw Sugar - 1/2 tsp
Red Onion - 1 medium size, finely sliced
Frozen Peas - 1 cup
Pulao Masala - 1/2 tsp
Raw Cashewnuts - a handful

Cook the rice till done and keep it aside to cool down.

Heat oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds, cinnamon, cloves, black pepper, raw sugar.

Then add the sliced onion and slit green chilies and saute on low flame till the onion caramelises. Add the cashewnuts and saute for a minute more. Remove the caramelised onion and cashewnuts and keep aside.

In the same skillet, add the frozen peas and salt. Sprinkle the pulao masala. Cook for a few minutes till the peas get soft.

Now add the cooked rice and the caramelised onion and cashewnuts. Mix everything well. Adjust the salt. Cook for a few minutes more. Remove and serve.