Smoked Methi Malai Mutter

 

Methi Malai Mutter

Methi Malai Mutter is a super-hit combination as their flavors complement each other very well.I added a variation of making it with some smoky flavor to enhance the taste. My guests were impressed & the dish was a hit. I bet that this recipe will be a hit with you too & you will want to add it to your favorites list. The best part of this recipe is, it is very easy & simple yet very tasty.Hope you like it!!

Ingredients

– 1 large onion quartered
– 3 large tomatoes quartered
– 1/2 bunch methi leaves cleaned and finely chopped
– 1/4 cup cashew nuts
– 1 big black cardamom
– 1 small cardamom
– 1 small cinnamon stick
– 1/2 tsp nutmeg powder
– 1 tsp black pepper powder
– 1 tbsp green chilli paste
– 1 tsp ginger paste
– 1tsp garlic paste
– salt to taste
– 1 tsp cumin seeds
– 1 tsp coriander powder
– 1 tsp sugar
– 1/2 cup frozen peas
– 1/2 cup whole milk (I use half & half milk instead of cream)
– a pinch turmeric powder
– 2 tbs oil
– 2 tbs kasuri methi
– 1 tbs ghee
– 1 tsp ghee + a small piece of coal

Instructions

– In a frying pan heat oil.
– splutter cumin seeds + cinnamon + cardamom + cloves then add onions+ tomatoes + coriander powder + ginger, garlic, chilli paste+ cashews + haldi + salt + sugar + pepper. Cook until tomatoes leave water and cashews are soft.
– puree to fine paste the cooked mix once cool.
– In a separate kadhai , heat ghee, add the peas + methi leaves saute for 2 mins.
– add the puree and stir well.
– add milk to the gravy and let it boil.
– Add kasuri methi by crushing it in between your palms.

For the smoke flavor:
Take a small piece of lit coal in a katori.
Place the katori in the middle of the gravy.
Pour 1 tsp of ghee on it and cover it immediately.
Let it rest for 10-15 mins so that the smoke flavor is absorbed.
Serve it with hot roti

 

 

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Baigan Bharta

Baigan Bharta

Baingan Bharta is mashed eggplant cooked with spices. Traditionally Bharta is made with charcoal roasted eggplant on a sigree. With the modern kitchen it sometimes becomes difficult to accommodate the traditional technique. I have tried to customize the method by roasting it in the oven in order to get the perfect bharta taste & flavors .

Ingredients

  • 2 Big  Fat Eggplant
  • 1 Cup Tomatoes Chopped
  • 1/2 Cup Onion Finely Chopped
  • 3 Chopped Chillies (Use the ones used in roasting the eggplant)
  • 5-6 Garlic Chopped (use the ones used in  roasting the eggplant)
  • 2-3 Red Chillies
  • 2 Tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • A pinch Asafoetida
  • 2 Tbs Oil
  • 2 Tsp Red Chilli Powder
  • 2 Tbs Coriander Powder
  • 2 Tbs Cumin Powder
  • Salt to Taste
  • Handful Coriander.
  • 1 small piece of charcoal

Instructions :-

-Preheat Oven at 180 C /350 F

-Make slits in the eggplant and insert the garlic cloves and green chillies in it.

-Rub some oil on the eggplant.

-Bake the Eggplant in the oven for 30 mins or until the skin starts to peel. (Keep turning the eggplant  after every 10 mins.

-Once the Eggplant is completely roasted ,Remove the garlic cloves & chillies.

-Peel the eggplant & mash the soft part. For the smoke flavour:

-Take a small piece of lit coal in a katori.

-Place the katori in the middle of the mashed eggplant.

-Pour 1 tsp of ghee on it and cover it immediately.

-Let it rest for 10-15 mins so that the smoke flavour is absorbed.

-Heat Oil in a kadhai.

-Add  Asafoetida + cumin seeds + chopped garlic + chopped chillies + Red chillies + Red chili. powder + turmeric powder + coriander powder + cumin powder. Cook for 1 min.

-Add chopped onions + tomatoes + salt  Cook until tomatoes are soft.

-Add the mashed eggplant + chopped coriander. Cook until oil separates.

-Serve hot with roti

Eggless Whole Wheat Cake – No Added Sugar

While Surfing the net I came across this interesting recipe of Whole wheat cake. I felt it worth giving it a shot. I prepared it with some of my personal modification. It turned out just awesome. No one could ever tell you if it is made from whole wheat & that too without any sugar added to it. Yes all natural sugar. This cake stood true to the regular one, it had the moistness, taste. It is healthy, guilt free & tasty. We rarely get all the 3 combination Healthy, Tasty, Guilt Free.

wheat-cake

 

Ingredients

  • 1 ⅓ cup Whole Wheat flour
  • 325 gms. Pitted Dates
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • ¼ cup Butter (Room Temp)
  • 1 tbs Oil
  • 1-2 tbs. Splenda (Optional.)
  • A pinch Salt
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp. Vinegar
  • 1 ½ cup Warm milk
  • 3-4 tbs. Unsweetened Cocoa powder
  • ½ cups Any Nuts (Walnuts, Almonds, Cashew, and Pistachio etc.)

Method

  1. Pulse the Dates in a blender (Keep the consistency as per your preference. I completely crushed them)
  2. Pre-Heat Oven at 180 ° C or (350 ° F).
  3. In a bowl Add butter + Oil & Flour. Rub it with hands and ensure that the flour is moist.
  4. Add Cocoa powder + Salt + Baking Powder + Baking Soda + Splenda (Optional) & mix well.
  5. In half cup milk add Vinegar + Vanilla Essence
  6. Add the Dates mixture to the flour + 1/2 cup milk. Stir well
  7. Now add the remaining Milk to mix.
  8. Add half of the Nuts
  9. Pour the batter in a greased cake tin.
  10. Drizzle the remaining nuts over the batter.
  11. Bake the cake for 45-50 mins. (Keep checking the cake after 45 mins.)
  12. Insert a toothpick or knife. If it comes out clean remove from the oven.
  13. After 10 mins remove from the Tin
  14. Let it cool & then serve.

Close Encounter with the Skies

A while ago, I realized my love for Sky Stories & decided to capture them in my camera. In our busy lives we usually tend to miss the beauty of Mother nature surrounding us. I personally feel that they are the natural healers. I have experienced the calmness & serenity by just sitting & looking at the beautiful things around. It helps me relieve stress & helps me to energize myself to fight back & get to my routine life. I have developed this  hobby of figuring out the stories that the sky writes with the help all that is available to it, Birds, Sun, Clouds,Planes etc. All these combine & blends into a beautiful story.

Last month on my way back from San Fransisco ,I had this beautiful encounter in the sky from my flight. The sky looked like an ocean with huge waves of clouds hitting the shore. The shades of orange, white & grey looked so amazing. It was indeed a beautiful sight & a breathtaking view.. Thank God I didn’t miss it!!!

Sky Stories

Sky Stories2

Sky Stories3

 

 

 

Indo-Chinese Mushroom

My husband is a foodie & loves to relish every bit of the food I cook. He is a big time fan of Indo Chinese food. Few days back I was left with an excess stock of Mushrooms. My Husband came up with this Idea of me making them in an Indo Chinese way. These Indo Chinese Mushrooms turned out really good. It is a spicy dish that you can eat is a main course with some bread or serve it as an Entrée.

Doesn’t the below pic look so beautiful & tempting? Hope you make it & give your self a spicy treat. Happy Cooking!!

Indo Chinese Mushrooms

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Portobello mushroom chunks
  • 1 large onion slits
  • 1 large bell pepper slits (I took Yellow & Red Peppers – The Colors in the dish look Fab)
  • 1-2 tbs. ginger paste
  • 1-2 tbs. garlic paste
  • 1-2 chilli slits
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper powder to coat mushrooms
  • 2 tsp. red chilli sauce
  • 1 tbs. soya sauce
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 1 tsp. garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp red chilli pd
  • 1 tsp. turmeric pd

Tools Required

  • Paper Towel

Note: You can always adjust the spicy sauces based on your taste & preferences.

Method

  1. Boil mushrooms in a pan with turmeric powder and a little salt.
  2. Strain the water & towel dry the mushrooms.
  3. Microwave a little butter (Around 1 tsp) and pour over on the dried mushrooms and sprinkle pepper powder. Coat them well.
  4. In a separate pan heat butter, pour few drops of regular oil to avoid butter from getting burnt.
  5. Add onions add garlic and ginger paste. Cook until pink.
  6. Add Bell peppers cook for 2 mins
  7. Add Salt + Garam masala + Chilli Slits + Chilli powder+ Red Shilli sauce + Soya sauce.
  8. Mix well until the mixture starts leaving sides
  9. Add the coated mushrooms cook for 5-10 mins
  10.  Serve Hot.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Veg Muffins

What should I make for Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner?That’s the biggest question I guess most of us women encounter daily. Then be it, it’s for any meal of the day. I personally list out the items that I would prepare for the week & plan out the grocery list to make them. I believe it’s a very challenging task to plan out your grocery shopping for the whole week ensuring that what you are planning to make is everyone’s favorite and the most important thing, it’s not a repeated. The other day I realized that all the breakfast items were checked & I was left with no other variety even though the grocery stock was in plenty. I decided to try something new and different, after having a quick peek at the available material I thought of making vegetable muffins from flattened rice (Poha). Yes Poha, doesn’t that sound interesting? It was my first shot which was a big hit at home. My husband just loved it!! The veg muffins turned out to be tasty & very healthy too (Minus the Cheese J). You can make them one day in advance & serve them for breakfast the next day. You can even pack them for picnics, school or work. Hope you try it & let me know your experience.

Veg Muffins

This recipe will yield 12 cupcakes. Happy Cooking !!

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup of Flattened rice (Poha) – crushed in blender to coarse powder
  • ½ cup  Chopped Potatoes
  • ¼ cup Chopped Onions
  • Handful finely chopped Cilantro
  • 1 tbs. Green Chilly paste
  • ¼ cup Green Peas
  • 1-2 tbs. Peanuts or chopped cashews
  • 1 tbs. Sugar (optional)
  • Salt to taste
  • 2-3 tbs. Cheese (Optional)
  • 2 sachet of Eno (Fruit Salt)
  • 2-3 tbs. Olive Oil (Optional- If you are a diet conscious skip it or add around 1-2 tsp)
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 tbs. Yogurt
  • Cheese for Topping(Optional)
  • Any Sauce of your choice to top the muffin

Tools Required

  • Cup Cake Liners
  • Cup Cake pan for 12 cup Cakes

Note: You can use any veggies of your choice. Adding Chopped Carrots, Corn would also taste great.

Method

  1. In a bowl Mix the Flattened rice powder + Potatoes + Onion + Green Peas + Cilantro + Chillies + Salt + Sugar+ Peanut.
  2. Add 3 tbs. of Yogurt + 1 cup of water. Mix well and let it rest for around 10 to 15 mins.
  3.  5 mins. past pre heat the Oven at 180 ° C or (350 ° F).
  4. After 15 mins. add the remaining 1 tbs. yogurt + ½ cup water + Oil & empty the 2 eno sachet into the mixture.
  5. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of water & mix well.
  6. Arrange the cupcake liners into the cake pan.
  7. Drop equal proportion of the mixture into each cupcake liner.
  8. Sprinkle some cheese & Bake it for 30 – 35 mins (Until golden)
  9. Remove the cupcakes from the pan & let it cool for 15 mins.
  10. Top it with your choice of sauce & serve.

 

 

 

 

Eggless SugarFree Carrot Cake

One of my favorite tea time bites is the carrot cake. It comes out perfect every time and has a delectably amazing flavor of all spice along with the light & spongy texture. The best bet is that it is sugar free & you don’t really have to count the sugar calorie count. Here goes the recipe. Hope you enjoy making it.

Carrot cake

 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup All Purpose Flour
  • ¾ cup grated Carrot
  • ¾ cup Splenda (or any other sugar free powder)
  • 1 tsp chai powder
  • ½ tsp cinnamon powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ cup oil
  • ½ cup yogurt
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • 1/3 cup Luke warm milk
  • 2 tbs walnuts chopped finely

Method

  1. Preheat the oven at 180 degree Celsius
  2. Sieve all-purpose flour in a bowl, Add Salt + Baking powder + Baking Soda + Spice powder(Chai & cinnamon) + Splenda + grated carrot + walnuts. Whisk all these together.
  3. Mix yogurt + oil in a separate bowl, whisk together to combine.
  4. Pour the above wet mixture to the dry ingredients. Mix & combine well. Add milk & vinegar to the batter (Start by adding half the quantity of the milk & then add the rest based on the consistency. It shouldn’t be very thin)
  5. Grease the cake tin with oil
  6. Pour the batter in the cake tin and place it inside the oven. Bake for 25-30 mins
  7. Check the cake with a skewer after 25 minutes by poking it in. If it comes out clean, it’s ready. If not, keep for some more time.
  8. Take the cake out of the oven, and let it cool. Then using a knife, loosen the edges, and take the cake out. Serve with a dusting of powdered sugar or frost it with some cream cheese frosting and enjoy the light & spongy carrot cake with tea, coffee or just as it is!

 

 

 

 

RASMALAI

Rasmalai really doesn’t need any introduction. I guess most of them just love it. I prepared it & it turned out so professional & tasty that no one could actually believe that it was made at home. I had used Haldiram’s Rasgullas as I had very less time to prepare the Rasgullas at home. For those who don’t eat readymade rasgullas, I will be posting the recipe to make them at home soon. I hope you try it and let me know your experience. Happy cooking!

Rasmalai

Ingredients:

  • Milk – 1 ltr (Preferably use Buffaloes milk)
  • Milk Maid – ½ tin (200 gms) (you can use just sugar also, but milkmaid gives that thick and smooth texture to the milk)
  • Sugar (As per taste)
  • Pistachios – 50 gms (Chopped)
  • Almonds – 50 gms (Chopped)
  • Elaichi Powder – 1/4 tsp (Cardamom)
  • Nutmeg Powder – ¼ tsp
  • Kesar –  a pinch (Saffron)
  • Rasgullas – 1 tin of Haldiram
  • Chilled Water – 1 ltr

Instructions:

  1. Drain all the sugar syrup from the Rasgullas
  2. Soak the Rasgullas in Chilled water for around 15 – 20 mins
  3. Squeeze the water from rasgullas and keep them aside
  4. In a pan heat Milk and then add milkmaid to it
  5. Take some kesar strands and add warm to it. (I had added yellow color also for the bright yellow look)
  6. Mix it with the milk that is in the Pan
  7. Let the milk come to boil. Add Nutmeg + Elaichi powder. Keep stirring continuously.
  8. Add Sugar (I added around 3-4 tsp as I don’t like very sweet rasmalai)
  9. Let the Milk boil till the quantity becomes half & the consistency is a little thicker
  10. Add the chopped dried fruits
  11. Let the Rasmalai cool down
  12. Add the Rasgullas to it.
  13. Let it rest in the fridge for at least 2-3 hours (More the time better it is)
  14. Serve chilled

Healthy Soya Nuggets

Soya bean nugget is one of the healthiest dishes that my family loves. I bet no one can eat just one. It can be eaten as a starter, main course or just as a munching snack. I assure you will love the way it tastes. It is a rich source of proteins & is very healthy for the body.

Soya Nuggets
Ingredients
• Mini Soya Nuggets – 200 grams
• Dry Kashmiri Chillies – 4 – 5
• Kasuri Methi – 3 tsp
• Curd – 1 ½ cup
• Maggi Tastemaker cubes – 3-4
• Salt to taste
• Coriander Powder – 1 tsp
• Chilli Powder – ½ tsp
• Chaat Masala – 1 Tsp
• Garam Masala – ½ Tsp
• Ginger – 1 inch (Make Paste)
• Garlic – 10 cloves (Make Paste)
• Oil – 1 ½ tbs (I used Olive oil)

Instructions
For the Red Chilli Paste:
1. Soak the Red chillies in Hot water for some time until they turn soft.
2. Remove the chillies & grind them to a fine paste.

For the Soya Nuggets:
1. Boil water (ensure that your utensil is big enough. A lot of froth tends to come up while we boil soya nuggets)
2. Once the water starts to boil at the peak add all soya nuggets.
3. Remove all the froth that comes up with the help of a spoon
4. Boil the nuggets until they are completely soft ( boil for around 5 mins)
5. Drain all the water and wash the nuggets with cold water
6. Squeeze all the water from the nuggets(In small quantities press the nuggets between your palms to remove all the water)

For the Marinate:
1. Whisk the curd in a bowl.
2. Add the Red chilli paste + Garlic Paste + Ginger Paste + Red chilli powder + coriander powder + Chaat Masala + Garam Masala + Maggi Tastemaker (crush it & then add) + Salt.
3. Mix the Marinate well.
4. Add the Soya Nuggets to the above marination. Mix well
5. Let it marinate for at least half an hour (More the Marination time better it will taste)

Final Step:
1. Heat oil in a pan
2. Add the nuggets to the pan when the oil heats up.
3. Cook till all the curd water dries up. (Keep stirring to avoid burning)
4. Add the kasuri methi. Cook for more 2-3 mins
5. Serve Hot

Quick Eggless Oreo Decadent Cake

Sometime it becomes too difficult to think on the spur of the moment  what could be served for desserts, especially when we have a surprise visit by guests. We all look out for options which are easy , quick & delicious. I’m sure after all the efforts put in making the main course & starters we all compromise on desserts by just serving some ready made sweets or may be ice creams. I prepared this Oreo decadent cake within 10 mins (5 mins for baking & 5 mins prep time) in microwave. It turned out just perfectly delicious. I served it hot with Vanilla ice cream. My family enjoyed it to the core. Hope you too try out this recipe & enjoy eating it.

Oreo Decandent

Ingredients

– 20 oreo biscuits 
– 1 cup luke warm milk
– 3/4 tsp baking powder
– 1/4 tsp baking soda
– 2 tbs powdered sugar
– 1/2 cup chocolate chunks

Method

1. Blend all the biscuits to a fine powder
2. Add sugar + milk + baking powder and baking soda and blend it again for 40 – 50 seconds
3. Pour half the batter into a greased glass bowl then add the chocolate chunks.
4. Add the remaining batter
and microwave it for 5-6 mins.
5. Check if the cake is done by inserting a toothpick.. if it comes out clean the cake is done,else microwave it for a min more
6. Cool the cake to room temp…remove it from the bowl and pour chocolate ganache on it
7. Serve it with vanilla ice-cream…

Tastes much better if eaten hot with ice-cream..

Notes :

  •  I used Chocolate ganache to pour over the cake to make it more sinful. You can use chocolate sauce or powdered sugar.
  • To make chocolate ganache, Take equal amount of cream & compound chocolate. Heat the Cream and add chocolate pieces to it. Mix till the Chocolate melts completely . Add a scoop of butter for the shine. Let it cool. Once cooled pour it over the Cake.