Posts Tagged ‘sabzi’

Mirch Ka Salan

Mirch Ka Salan

When I saw this beautiful jalepeno peppers in grocery store, I immediately grabbed a few without even thinking of any dish. When I was picking up these peppers, from the other side, hubby was looking at me and smiling.

I know he is not a big fan of spicy food but I am glad he tried this and gave me a positive feedback. Let me confess something about him here, my husband is an amazingly easy person to cook for. He will eat anything and everything I set down in front of him, except ghee and butter.Its not that he don’t eat ghee or butter for diet reasons, it’s just that he don’t like the smell of it..weird…right..But that’s how it is…if he don’t smell these two ingredients in any dish, he will happily enjoy the dish.

If you like spicy dishes, this is the one for you…I’ve always eaten this dish in restaurants. I don’t have a single memory of having mirch ka salan at home. Mirch is basically a hindi term for any kind of peppers and salan is the gravy or sauce.The gravy is lightly tangy, and has a mellow and creamy taste because of the spices used. And yes, don’t forget to remove the seeds and membranes from inside of peppers, which is the reason for the hotness of the chillies.It also brings the heat of the chilli’s down a bit..

jalapeño

jalapeño

Ingredients:

  • 6-7  jalapeño peppers, or any green pepper of your choice(I have also used some green bell peppers)
  • 1/4 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp mustard seeds
  • 4-5 methi seeds
  • 4-5 curry leaves
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp degi laal mirch, sweet paprika powder
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala powder
  • 1/2  tsp tamarind concentrate
  • 3 tbsp extra light olive oil
  • salt to taste

To be grind into a paste

  • 2 tbsp peanuts, roasted, skin removed
  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds, roasted
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
  • 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tbsp grated coconut
Mirch Ka Salan

Mirch Ka Salan

Method:

  • Wash and slit the peppers lengthwise without cutting the peppers into two. Remove the seeds and membrane(you can do it by cutting at the end), heat a teaspoon of oil in a wide pan and layer the pepper evenly and shallow fry in hot oil until they turn light in color. Drain on paper towel and keep aside.
  • In the same pan, add 1 teaspoon of oil, add chopped onions and sauté for 5-6 minutes, then add ginger-garlic paste, chopped tomatoes and shredded coconut and cook until the mixture is slightly golden brown. Keep this aside.
  • Dry roast peanuts, once cooled, remove the skin and keep aside.
  • In the same pan dry roast sesame seeds and then grind all this ingredients (including the saute onions) into a smooth paste adding little water if needed..
  • Heat 2 tablespoon of oil, add cumin seeds, mustard seeds, methi seeds and let them crackle. Then add curry leaves and the onion paste, cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add turmeric powder, coriander powder, garam masala, degi mirch(sweet paprika powder) and salt to taste. Cook this masala on medium-low heat until the oil separates.
  • Add 1  1/2 cups of water and tamarind pulp and bring it to a boil.
  • Add the fried peppers and check for seasoning, add more salt if needed. Simmer until the gravy thickens.
  • Serve hot with plain white rice. Enjoy!
Mirch Ka Salan

Mirch Ka Salan

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Bitter Gourd or bitter melon also called Karela in Hindi, is a popular vegetable in India. Not many people like this veggie but I happen to love this veggie. In order to cook this veggie you need some cooking technique to minimize the bitterness and enjoy the vegetable. Usually I made simple stir fry with lots of onion. But this time I got some beautiful small bitter gourds. So, I thought of making this stuffed karela’s( my MIL’s recipe). I love all the dishes made by her.

Ingredients:

  • 8-9 small bitter gourd
  • 1 big onion, grated
  • 3 tbsp mustard oil
  • pinch of asafoetida (hing)
  • 2-inch of ginger, grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon amchur powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1 green chill, chopped
  • 2 teaspoon pickle masala(I have used carrot & chilli pickle, mother’s recipe brand)
  • salt to taste

Method:

  • Wash and Scrap the rough edges of bitter gourd and keep aside.
  • Make a slit in the center on each gourd for stuffing and scoop out the hard seeds from inside, make sure not to slit all the way.
  • Sprinkle salt on the bitter gourd’s and to the peelings and let it sit for 1-2 hours. Then, wash and pat dry the bitter gourd’s. This process helps to remove bitterness from the bitter gourd. Squeeze out the excess moisture from the peeling.
  • And pound those scoop out hard seeds in pestle coarsely, mix it with gourd peeling, grated ginger and keep it aside.
  • Heat a tablespoon of mustard oil in skillet on medium heat. Wait for oil to heat before adding onion and asafoetida, sauté onions until translucent.Now add gourd peelings-seed mixture, turmeric powder, coriander powder, gram masala powder, red chilli  powder, green chill and salt to taste . Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of water to the mixture, cover and cook for about 15-20 minutes.Once the masala is properly cooked, add pickle masala and amchur powder and taste for seasoning. 
  • Add stuffing mixture to the bitter gourds and do not over-stuff.
  • Heat mustard oil in a wide skillet on medium heat.Once heated, shallow fry each gourds until golden on all the sides. Keep turning them gently so that they get cooked  evenly on all the sides. This whole process will take 25-30 minutes on low heat.
  • Serve hot with Dal and Rice. Enjoy!
Note:
  • If you are not using any pickle masala increase the amount of amchur powder or you can also add 1 teaspoon of lemon juice.
  • Try to use small bitter gourds.
  • You can also tie the gourd’s with thread after stuffing or else take care while flipping to the sides. I didn’t tie my gourd’s.

Last weekend we went to Edison, New Jersey with our friends to get Ganesha Idol for forthcoming puja at their place, we also visited one Indian grocery store. I was total lost in that store. After so many years I was seeing a big Indian grocery store, with indian music all around and the best thing was I was able to find so many things for which even I had forgotten the names. At first I was like what to take and from where to start. I didn’t expect a indian grocery store that big and full of every possible ingredient you can imagine. Really…even I saw some pan leaves in that store… 🙂 I also got one of my favorite vegetable which brings me to today’s post.

I’m going to share with you my favorite sabzi recipe for parora/parwal, also known as pointed gourd. Parwal is a popular vegetable in India, especially in Eastern and Northern India. Parval is very popular among the Bihari Cuisine and a healthy vegetable, as my mom will say.  This vegetable looks like tiny cucumbers or squash, with tapering ends. Parwal, belongs to the family of Cucurbits (cucumber, squash, etc.).  It is a good source of carbohydrates, vitamin A and vitamin C.

Back home, my mom used to prepare this vegetable a lot. During the season, mom will make simple stir fried to go with dal(lentils) and rice. She will also make spicy curry to go along with indian breads(roti or paratha). The crispy nature of this vegetable even after it has been cooked along with potatoes, gives the unique taste and crunch, which I love.

Pointed Gourd (Parwal) Sabzi

Pointed Gourd (Parwal) Sabzi

Ingredients:

  • 10-15 parwal, cut in big cubes
  • 1 medium-sized potato, peeled and cut in cubes
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1-inch of ginger
  • 2-3 green chillies
  • 1 medium-sized tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon sweet paprika powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon tawa masala
  • 1/4 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon amchur powder
  • salt to taste
Pointed Gourd (Parwal) Sabzi

Method:

  • Wash the parwal and cut the ends, slightly scrape the outer skin and slice lengthwise into four quarters or big cubes.
  • Take half of the chopped onion, garlic, green chillies, ginger and grind them into a fine paste in a blender.Keep it aside.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a pan over medium high heat, add the parwal and fry on medium flame till it obtains a nice color on the skin. once done, transfer the fried veggies in a plate. In the same pan sauté the cubed potatoes till they get a slight golden color. Again transfer to a plate and keep it aside.
  • In the same pan heat the remaining oil. Add cumin and let it splutter, later add bay leaves. Sauté. Add the remaining chopped onions, give it a stir and fry till they get a light color and turn translucent. Add the ginger, garlic and the onion puree you made earlier and cook for 3-4 minutes more .
  •  Add chopped tomatoes, salt, turmeric, coriander powder, garam masala powder, tawa masala, sweet paprika powder and stir. Cover and cook for 4 min. You will notice the tomatoes have softened and the oil has separated.
  • Add the fried parwal and potatoes and mix well, stir and cook for 2 min. Add  water and let it simmer for 5 min or till gravy is of desired consistency. Sprinkle the amchur powder and mix well.
  • Serve hot with roti and enjoy!!
Pointed Gourd (Parwal) Sabzi

Pointed Gourd (Parwal) Sabzi

Moth Sprout Beans Curry

Posted: July 22, 2011 by incidentalcooksuman in Curries, Dal/Lentils soup, Dinner, Indian Food
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Moth sprout beans curry was very often made in our home.The one thing I like about this sabzi does not need any special ingredients.Once you plan the sprouting routine in advance it’s a easiest meal to put together, so it’s perfect  for those days when you don’t feel like having any veggies. I have adapted my mom’s recipe here which is super simple and extremely delicious. Mom used to make this sabzi with different sprouted beans like green moong beans, white and green dried-sprouted peas and whatever she can think of… 🙂 . Really you can use any kind of sprouted beans or combination of all. It’s all up to you to make it delicious and healthy at the same time.

Mom makes one drier version and one with plenty of gravy. Usually she serves the drier version  for sunday breakfast with jam, butter and bread. It is healthy, full of protein and has a high nutritional value. I like both the version. Gravy one is served hot with roti for lunch or dinner. It is really hard to believe that sometimes some simple dishes are so delicious and addictive that you can’t stop eating it. Whenever mom makes this and if I am at home I will start tasting this one bowl at time. Make this for yourself and enjoy a hearty bowl of healthy bliss dinner!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups matki or moth beans,  sprouted
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium white onion, chopped
  • 1-inch ginger, grated
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 potato, diced
  • 2 green chillies, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon white sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoon fresh grated coconut
  • handful of fresh coriander leaves, chopped
  • Salt to taste

Method:

  • To sprout, soak the moth/matki beans overnight in plenty of water. Next day, drain the water, rinse the beans and keep all the beans in a clean cotton cloth and tie the cloth lightly. Keep it in warm place under a basket or any heavy dish. Don’t let the cloth dry, spray water to supply moisture necessary for sprout growth. Usually within a day, you will see nice, long sprouts appears. Before using this for sabzi wash sprouts thoroughly through running water.
  • Grind together sesame seeds and half of the chopped onions to a fine paste.
  • Heat the oil in a pressure cooker or in any large sauce pan with a lid. Add cumin seeds and dried red chillies and wait for them to get lightly brown.
  • Add chopped onions, crushed ginger-garlic, green chillies, onion-sesame paste and cook until onions are translucent.
  • Add tomatoes, turmeric powder, coriander powder, garam masala powder, red chilli powder and salt to taste and cook covered until the oil separates.
  • Add the potatoes and cook covered for 5-6 minutes.
  • Add the sprouted  moth/matki beans and cook covered until the beans are tender but not mushy about 20-25 minutes or so.
  • Add the grated coconut and cook for another 1 or 2 minutes.
  • Garnish with coriander leaves, some onions and lemon.
  • Serve piping hot and enjoy  this with roti.

Palak Paneer

Posted: July 18, 2011 by incidentalcooksuman in Curries, Dinner, Indian Food
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Growing up I was not a big fan of green leafy vegetable. But now being a mom I have to eat this veggies in order for my son to obtain the taste and liking for the same.  And I think I also started liking this veggies as an adult. Hubby loves spinach and our recent trip to farmer’s market and with the amount of fresh spinach I brought, brings me to this dish.

Palak Paneer is again the most famous vegetarian dish. Palak is nothing but the hindi term for spinach and paneer is soft Indian cottage cheese. This rich and healthy delicacy consists of small soft paneer cubes cooked in palak based gravy and some indian masala. I don’t have to tell you how healthy it is, if you are on diet this is the best guilt free dish to enjoy.I like to make my own paneer but you are most welcome to get the same from Indian grocery store.

Like most Indian recipes, there are different ways to make a single dish. Palak paneer traditionally made with heavy cream and butter/ghee. But I have made this little more healthy and didn’t use any cream or butter. This recipe is easy, simple and yet nutritious.

Palak Paneer

Palak Paneer

Ingredients:

  • 2 bunches of Palak (spinach)
  • 1 1/2 cups paneer, cut in small cubes
  • 1 small white onion, chopped
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 2 tablespoon crushed tomatoes
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3 green chillies
  • 1 inch fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon tawa masala
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried mango powder (amchur powder)
  • 3 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt to taste
Palak Paneer

Palak Paneer

Method:

  • Blanch the spinach leaves in a large pot of boiling salted water for 2 minutes only. Drain immediately and immerse in a bowl of ice water.
  • Squeeze out the excess water, and churn it in a blender until smooth and fine puree is obtained. Though water is not needed but if it does add it in small quantities. Once done keep it aside.
  • In a pestle, crush garlic, ginger and green chillies to a fine paste.
  • Heat oil in a pan and fry the cubed paneer until lightly golden brown on all the sides. Remove from pan and keep it on paper towel until needed.
  • In the same pan add the remaining two tablespoon of oil, add cumin seeds and let it get brown.
  • Add chopped onions followed by garlic-ginger-green chilli paste and little salt and cook until the onions are translucent.
  • Add chopped tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, turmeric powder, coriander powder, red chilli powder, garam masala, tawa masala and salt. Cook covered for 5-6 minutes on low flame.
  • Now add palak puree to the pan and little water for gravy like consistency and cook covered for 10-12 minutes more.
  • In the end before switching of the flame add fried paneer, amchur powder and mix well. Cook for 1 minute or so.
  • Serve hot with roti and enjoy!

Memorial day weekend was full of fun, we were visiting our friends place in Ohio for a week. Our memorial day started early friday and we reached there around midnight. Even after a long drive as soon as we saw them we all were fully charged and ready for a long night talk. Even my two-year old does not wanted go to bed. We chatted the whole night almost till the sunrise. Then on memorial day we went for a day trip to an island in Lake Erie and enjoyed day of fun and jet skiing.

Weekend is over and after coming home it was so difficult to go in kitchen and cook something. My friend had made incredibly delicious dishes every day and pampering us with everything. It was like I have visited home and eating all delicious foods made by my mom… Just bliss!!

I still have not cooked anything so far, this dish is one that I made earlier.

Stuffed pepper or more precisely in Indian term Bharva mirch is one of my all time comfort dish, hubby loves this too. This is another one of those dish which looks like they take a lot of time and effort to put together but it is very easy. There are different variation to this recipes but traditionally this is stuffed with mashed potatoes which is seasoned with some indian spices and herbs. And you’ve got yourself a perfect, healthy and delicious side dish to serve along with roti or rice.

Ingredients:

For stuffing:

  • 1 large Idaho potato
  • 3 medium-sized green bell peppers
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  •  1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
  •  1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds
  •  2 garlic cloves finely chopped
  •  2 tablespoon white onion
  • 1 green chilli finely chopped
  •  1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  •  1 teaspoon coriander powder
  •  1/4 teaspoon garam masala
  •  1/4 teaspoon raw mango powder
  •  handful of fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  •  Salt to taste

For Masala:

  • 1 large white onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin powder
  • salt to taste

Method:

  • Wash the green peppers well and pat dry with paper towel. Cut the tops off. Remove the seeds and membranes inside and make a hollow.Keep all cleaned peppers aside for later use.
  • Wash the potatoes and then boil till soft. Peel, mash roughly and keep aside for later use.
  • Heat oil in a pan on medium heat, add the cumin seeds, mustard seeds and cook till spluttering stops. Now add  chopped onions, green chillies and garlic and fry till the onions turns light golden.
  • Now add turmeric powder, coriander powder, red chilli powder garam masala powder and fry for 1 minute. Add the mashed potato and mix well to blend with all the spices. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring often. Turn off the fire, add dried mango powder and salt to taste and mix well. This will be our potato stuffing . Cool of the mixture before stuffing the peppers.
  •  Fill each green pepper to the top with the mashed potato mix. Press down and top up to ensure they are well filled.
    Heat the remaining cooking oil in a pan on a low flame. Add  the onions, garlic, green chillies and cook until the onions are soft.
  • Add crushed tomatoes, turmeric powder, coriander powder, garam masala powder, cumin powder and cook for 4-5 minutes. Place the stuffed bell peppers in the pan on the masala and cook them covered on medium heat for about 15 to 20 minutes.
  •  Turn them to sides in-between so that they could get brown on all sides. Place the peppers on a serving dish carefully and drop the rest of the masala on top of it to serve.
  •  Serve this scrumptious dish along with roti..

Enjoy!!

Bhindi/Okra Fry

Posted: March 30, 2011 by incidentalcooksuman in Indian Food
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Woke up early morning to see the match and I will not say I am crazy about cricket but whenever there’s match between this two countries, I don’t know how and from where I get the craziness and interest to watch every bit of it. Go India go…God bless India!

I hope India wins this match and of course the final too. This will most probably be Sachin Tendulkar’s last world cup and it would be great to have world cup champ on his cap. He is such a legendary cricketer and great Indian. I wonder whats is happening in India today, whenever there’s match like this whole India is glued to the TV screens. There is silence on streets and shouting in homes.

Here is the World Cup theme song for Team India…enjoy…Jai Hind…

Now coming back to today’s post…

Bhindi or Okra is a vegetable dish served with hot roti’s or paratha’s. I love okra like no other veggie. Whenever mom used to ask me what vegetable would you like to eat and my prompt reply used to be Bhindi..even though I would had that for my last meal. My friends used to say no need to ask her what she is going to have for lunch. So, by now you must have guessed how obsessed I am with this veggie. As soon as I make this simple yet deliciously good sabzi, I don’t feel like wasting a moment to dig in. May be because of that I haven’t posted a single recipe with this veggie yet. It will not be fair to okra if I do not post a single dish with this.

I like this veggie with very less masala, sometimes I just fry them with salt and red chilli powder and eat. Initially when I started cooking I always end up destroying the veggie during cooking process. Still it used to taste better to me compared to other dishes…:)
Also, this is one veggie which I never get bored eating.

Bhindi/Okra fry

Bhindi/Okra fry

Ingredients:

  • 1lb fresh okra
  • 3 medium white onions, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • salt to taste

Method:

  • Wash, cut head and tail end off of each okra. Chop okra into small round pieces.
  • Heat oil in deep skillet, add cumin seeds and let it gets brown.
  • Add onions and fry until it turns light brown or translucent.
  • Add turmeric powder, coriander powder, red chilli powder and salt to taste. Mix well and cook for 2-3 minutes more.
  • Now add okra and mix well with onion masala mixture. Cook for 7-8 minutes or until the veggie is tender and cooked.
  • Serve hot with roti or parathas.
Bhindi/Okra fry

Bhindi/Okra fry