Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Show me your refrigerator

This is my entry to this event hosted by Divya.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Palak Paneer

Palak Paneer is one of my favorite dishes and I'm sure many of you reading this would already be drooling over it. It is an eternal Indian dish that is liked by many all over the world.

1 small bunch of chopped Spinach(frozen or fresh)
10-12 pieces of 1" paneer cubes
Milk or Cream, as needed(I used 1/2 cup milk)
1 small Onion, chopped
1 medium tomato, chopped
3-4 green chillies/jaalpenos
1 spoon,Garam masala/all spice powder
1 Spoon,Corriander powder/dhania masala
Chilli Powder - as needed for taste

Boil spinach(frozen of fresh) in little water for about 5 minutes. Alternatively, microwave it. Use as little water as possible so that you don't need to discard the water that has the nutrients. Let it cool.
In the meanwhile, take a medium sized pan and add oil followed by onions. After 3-4 minutes, add tomatoes. Let it cook well for about 5 minutes. Now, add the spice powders. At this point, take care that the dish is not burnt. Add a little water if it helps to keep the dish from burning. After a couple of minutes, switch off the stove and let the masala cool.

Now, come back to the spinach and add it to a blender jar WITH the chillies (Do not forget the green chillies) and coarsely grind. Just 1-2 pulses should do. Keep it aside. Once the onion and tomato paste has cooled, blend it finely in the same blender jar(or a different one). You will not need any additional water.

Again,add 1 spoon of oil in the same skillet and add this onion-tomato paste to it. Let it cook for a few minutes. Add spinach paste and salt and mix well. Allow it to come to a boil. Add, milk or cream. If you are not concerned about the calories, you can go ahead and add cream. It is cream that is used in the original recipes of Palak Paneer and the one served in restaurants. If not cream, add plain milk. Water can also be used instead of cram or milk but the dish does not turn out creamy. Add as much as needed to make the dish to a consistency that you want. Next, stir in paneer pieces without breaking it and cook for 1-2 minutes. Mix well. Check the taste for salt and switch off the stove.
Serve with rotis,parathas or rice. I served it with steamed rice.

Methi/Fenu greek leaves Rice

I had some methi leaves with me and did not want to make the usual methi parathas(that I always make). I thought I"ll use the internet to search recipes for methi pulao or methi rice and I land up with so many recipes and each one is different. WOW, that speaks volumes on how tasty and flavored this dish could be. Not to mention, the different varieties in cooking it. Finally, I closed my browser and decided that I would be trying my own recipe because I did not have some ingrdients from some recipes or some other. Here is my recipe.Trust me, this is a very simple recipe. No roasted powders and no grinding. It is a fast fix recipe. Pack it in your lunch box and you are good for lunch. Or have it for dinner too. The smell of methi leaves as you cook the dish will fill your kitchen.

Here's what you will need:

Cooked rice - about 2 cups
1 small bunch of methi leaves, washed well and chopped
1 small onion, chopped finely
1 medium tomato, chopped
Cooking oil - 3-4 tablespoons(this is not a super healthy dish - the flavor comes from the excess oil used for methi leaves)
1/2 spoon mustard seeds
a few curry leaves
Lemon juice for garnish
Salt to taste

In a skillet/pan, heat all of the oil and once hot, add mustard seeds,asofoetida and curry leaves. Now add onions. Allow them to get cooked for 3-4 minutes;follow by tomatoes. After a couple of minutes, add the chopped fenugreek leaves and mix well. Allow it to cook till it wilts. This will take just a minute. Now, add salt and turn off the stove. Add the cooked rice and lemon juice and mix well. Serve hot or warm.. This can be eaten with pickle/yoghurt.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Dhaniya chutney - sandwich style

This is a different flavor to the usual Corriander chutney/Cilantro dip. This was the version that my mom used to make for sandwiches and I loved them as it gave a completely different taste to sandwiches.
We are planning a road trip for the Independence day week end and I thought it would be a good idea to pack a few sandwiches for the drive(being vegetarians we hardly find anything to eat on travel)

Here's the list of ingredients:
Cilantro - 1 medium bunch
Onion - 1 small,chopped
Bell peppers - 1/2 medium,chopped(Optional)
Green chillies/jalapeno peppers - to taste
ginger garlic paste - 1 spoon
sugar - 1 spoon(Yes,sugar!!!)
Lemon juice - to taste/1 Tbsp
Salt - to taste
Cooking oil - 1 spoon

There are two ways to make this chutney: One is by sauteeing the onion and bell peppers in a spoon of oil and then, on coolong,blending it together with the other ingredients; the other is to add all the ingredients in the blender. I used the first method.

In a skillet, add cooking oil for the saute and add onion pieces followed by bell peppers. Give it couple of minutes and switch off. allow it to cool.
In a blender jar, add all the ingredients along with the onion and bell peppers and grind to a smooth consistency.

This recipe will make about 6-8 sandwiches and stays good for about a week in the refrigerator.

To make sandwiches:
Slice Sandwich rolls or use bread loaves. Apply this dip to one side and stuff the rolls with veggies of your choice. I add grated carrots, sliced cucumbers,sliced tomatoes, few pieces of olives. Yum! I'm already drooling . You could also add mustard sauce/tomato ketchup/mayonnaise or pickle to other other side of the sandwich.