Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Kale chane ani Jeev kadgi Ghassi (breadfruit and dark chickpea curry)

This is one of those dishes that is cooked at festivals and weddings. The black chana and the breadfruit (Jeev Kadgi) make it an amazing combination of flavors along with the mild spices and the mustard tempering in coconut oil and ofcorse the ground coconut masala adds its own unique flavor profile. This is also cooked with raw jackfuit and the kala chana can be substituted with kabuli chana (Garbanzo beans) too.
I personally do not know how it is cooked in the most authentic way - but, I like the use of chana dal (split bengal gram) and urad dal (Split black gram) in the masala mixture and I like to roast the coconut a bit too. There are various ways to cook this humble ghassi and like many recipes this differs from household to household.
Since this was cooked for a festival as a neivedhya - there is no use of onion or garlic here.


Ingredients

1 cup kala chana/dark chickpea
1 cup breadfruit - I used the precut frozen breadfuit.
2 tablespoons urad dal/split black gram
1 tablespoon chana dal/split bengal gram
1 teaspoon whole coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 cup grated coconut
1 teaspoon tamarind paste
5 dried kashmiri chilis (use more or less as per taste)
2 tablespoons coconut oil (you can use any other cooking oil too)
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
10 curry leaves
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/4 teaspoon asafoetida/hing
1 teaspoon oil (I used olive oil)
salt to taste

Method

Soak the kala chana in 4 cups of warm water for 8 to 10 hours. Pressure cook them in just enough water to cover the chanas along with 1/2 teaspoon turmeric and 1/4 teaspoon asafoetida and 1 teaspoon oil. Cook it for about 3 whistles and wait till the cooker releases the pressure.
In the meantime make the ground masala. In a karahi add 1 teaspoon coconut oil. When it gets hot, lower the flame to a medium and add the whole coriander seeds, urad dal, chana dal, dried kashmiri chilis and cumin. Let this saute for about 30 to 40 seconds till a nice aroma of the dals fills the kitchen. To this add the grated coconut and saute till they turn a little golden brown. Take this mixture out onto a plate and let it cool. In the same karahi, add the 1 teaspoon coconut oil. when it gets hot, add the mustard seeds and let them splutter. Then add the curry leaves and when they crisp up, add the breadfruit pieces. Mix well, add about 1/4 cup water and cover and cook on low medium flame for 10 minutes.
By now the roasted masala will have cooled to a warm. Grind this to a fine paste adding the tamarind paste and just enough water to get the grinder running,
Add this paste to the cooking breadfruit along with the pressure cooked chanas. Add just enough water to get a thick gravy as shown in the picture. Add salt to taste. Cover and let this mixture come to a boil - then lower the flame and let it simmer for about 10 more minutes.
Serve with plain steamed rice or chapatis. I can eat it just like this in a bowl.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Gudi Padva Thali - 31 March 2014


This has been a long long overdue post. We celebrated Gudi Padva on 31 March 2014. Its a Maharashtrian  festival celebrating the first day of the New Year according to the Hindu Calendar. This festival is also called 'Ugadi' in Kannada - I know this because I was born in North Karnataka and spent a good 7 years of my life there.
We refer to this festival as Gudi Padwa or Ugadi at home.
I remember Mom making some wonderful dishes on this day. Ofcorse the dreadful part used to be the neem leaves that we had to chew. Ofcorse mum used to have it smeared in sugar and grated coconut............ still it was bitter and had a funny smell. But, we ate it so that we could enjoy the goodies that were to follow.
we had a fun meal of Maharastrian food as well as Konkani food. What can I say - we are foodies and celebrations means food. On this day I had made food like it is in most Konkani households.
So - this year we had a fun meal on the auspicious day. Kiddo was at home and the husband was working from home - so, it was fun.
This is how the thali looked - We had Sheeth (Rice) with Dali Thoy (Dal) in the big bowl. On the plate (lets go clockwise) - kale chane ani jeevkadgi ghassi, beans and carrot sukhi bhaji, khamang kakdi, shevai kheer, Puri, Rice Papad and Potato Bhajiya in the center.

Sheeth & Dali Thoy

Kale Chane ani Jeev Kadgi Ghassi

Rice Papad

Puri

Khamang Kakdi

Potato Bhajiya

Shevai Kheer

Beans & Carrot Sukhi Bhaji

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Rasam Powder


Ingredients

15 dried kashmiri red chilis
15 curry leaves
1/4 cup tuvar dal/split pigeon peas
1/4 cup masoor dal/split lentils
2 tablespoons urad dal/split black gram
2 tablespoons coriander seeds
2 teaspoons black peppercorns
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds/methi seeds
1/2 teaspoon asafoetida/hing
1 teaspoon turmeric powder

Method

Dry roast all the ingredients one by one except the asafoetida and the turmeric powder - till a nice aroma comes by. Mix all the ingredients together including the asafoetida and the turmeric powder and run it through a mixer/blender/grinder to get a nice powder.
Rasam powder is ready. Store in a airtight container. Lasts for a good year.
Use it to make Rasams of your choice.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Jeera aur Saunf wali Chicken Curry (Cumin & Fennel Flavored Chicken Curry)

Chicken curry with bread or chapattis is a staple dinner at our place as 'Little Miss A' always loves to eat it. You ask her what she wants for dinner and pat comes the reply........... Can we have some chicken curry please............
Just like her father Mr. A - she wants variety when it comes to the favorite food too. So, I have been coming up with different different versions of the curry - just to please my family.
For vegetarians - you can add potatoes, cauliflowers, peppers, paneer or even some soaked and cooked kabuli chana (Garbanzo beans) or black eyes kidney beans to the gravy.
I had made this simple stuff when my cousin an his family had visited us a couple of weeks ago - and it was loved by my niece and nephew. 


Ingredients

1 tablespoon cumin seeds
2 tablespoons fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon whole black pepper
2 green cardamoms
2 cloves
1 black cardamom
1/2 cup grated coconut
1/2 cup - chopped cilantro
5 green chilis - you can add more or less as per your spice preference
2 pounds chicken - I used boneless skinless thighs - cut into bite size pieces
2 onions - roughly chopped
10 cloves garlic - grated
1 inch ginger piece - grated
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
2 tablespoons oil
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
Salt to taste
Chopped cilantro for garnish


Method

Grind to a fine paste by adding very little water the cumin seeds, fennel seeds, black peppercorns, cardamom, cloves, black cardamom, green chillis, cilantro and coconut and keep aside.
In a wok or karahi add the oil and once it gets hot add the bay leaf and the cinnamon stick. Then add the chopped onions and grated garlic and fry till it turns into a golden color. To this add the grated ginger and turmeric powder and saute for another 1 minute. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and the ground masala paste. Mix this well and keep stirring it for about 10 minutes. Now add the chicken pieces , lower the flame to a medium, add half cup water and cover and let it cook for 25 to 30 minutes.
Open lid and stir the curry well. Add salt if needed, according to your taste and check if the chicken is cooked through. If chicken is not cooked - cover and let it cook on medium flame for another 10 minutes or till it gets cooked through. Adjust water to make it as thick as you wish. I kept it at curry consistency - a little more runny than a dosa/pancake batter.
Serve hot with bread slices, pav, chappati or with rice.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Vangi Bhaat (with some bell peppers and spinach)

After the vaangi bhaat masala powder recipe - it is ofcorse time for some yummy warm vaangi bhaat.
I had to go and twist it a bit. So I added some green and red bell peppers and some spinach too. These peppers were given to me by my ever-loving dear friend Mini - her parents had grown them in their vegetable patch.
We liked this with some cooling cucumber and carrot salad and a bowl of yogurt.
Little Miss A liked it too - even though it was a tad bit spicy for her taste I guess, as she was eating yogurt after every bite of the vaangi bhaat.

If you do not wish to make the masala for storing - but, want to make it just for the one time use - here is what you can do

1 tablespoon coriander seeds

1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon bengal gram/chana dal
1 tablespoon split black gram/urad dal
2 dried kashmiri chiis
2 dried byadgi chilis
1 tablespoon dried coconit slices
10 curry leaves
1/8 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
2 cloves
1 green cardamom
Dry roast all of them together and grind to a fine powder in a spice grinder.



Ingredients

2 cups rice - I used sona masoori
1 teaspoon salt
1 red onion - chopped finely
6 chinese eggplants (they were about 3 cups when chopped)
2 cups chopped spinach
1 tablespoon coconut oil (you can use any other oil too)
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
10 curry leaves
1 chopped green chili (more if you like the heat)
1/2 cup groundnuts
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
salt to taste
5 tablespoons vaangi bhaat masala


Method

Wash the rice clean. In a saucepan add 6 cups of water and bring it to a boil. Add the 1 teaspoon salt and the rice and let it cook for about 10 minutes or till the rice is cooked through. Drain it into a colander or sieve and let it sit.
In a karahi/wok - add the coconut oil. When it gets hot add the mustard seeds and let it splutter. Then add the curry leaves, the green chili (if using) and the groundnuts and fry on medium heat till the groundnuts get a golden color. Add the chopped onions and the turmeric and saute till the onions become transparent. Then add the eggplants, green and red peppers and the spinach and mix well. Cover and let it cook for about 5 minutes. Check if the eggplants are cooked through, if not then cover and cook for another 5 minutes. Add the vaangi bhaat masala and salt to taste and mix it well. Add the cooked rice to this mixture and mix it around with a very light hand so that each grain of rice is coated with the masala. Cover and let it simmer/steam for about 5 minutes.
Serve with yogurt and salad of your choice.

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