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Crispy leftover lentil rice jeera (cumin) fritters

 

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Invention is always a challenge….Or discovering something that’s experimental and stimulating to the mind and taste buds as well.. Just not with food but with anything don’t we like to wonder if its worth the effort and experimentation and the investment, Well I say sometimes let things be for the joy of it… And if it brings joy to the heart, the returns come to you naturally.. Let the process be fun…no matter what the outcome.

With leftovers sometimes you just want to reheat and have them because else by then they get boring and mundane..

And Leftovers are common. But creatively churning out something that’s worth eating the next day too.. is quite a challenge…

I had left over Dry Spicy Khichdi/ an Indian preparation made from rice and lentils (dal).

Khichdi is commonly considered to be a comfort food, and was the inspiration for the Anglo-Indian dish kedgeree. Khichri is also thought to be the inspiration for the popular Egyptian dish, kushari.

In India Khichdi is usually prepared atleast once a week (Just a guess). An absolute comfort food.
If you are new to this, you must try and have it hot with the family with some pickle of your choice.

A quick recipe of Khichdi would be:

In a pressure cooker, temper in two tsp of hot refined oil, some chopped onions, cumin seeds, mustard seeds and green chillies. Add one cup of lentil (moong/ tuar),one cup of regular rice and three cups of water. Add two pinch of turmeric powder, 1/4th tbsp of red chilly powder, two tbsp or more tomato puree or chopped tomatoes, salt and let pressure cook with two whistles or till rice and lentile are just cooked. Garnish with chopped coriander.

 

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So, since I had these leftovers, I ended up whipping these fritters/ snackers that would go perfect with you cuppa tea or coffee.. Click on the link to get a ginger tea recipe done the Indian way.

You can use left over steamed rice too and play with flavours by adding more spices to the fritters dough

The ingredients used in this recipe have a lot character and Indianess ! By that I mean, they all together add to the final recipe and taste!

To make this mathri kind of fritters or snackers,

Take a quarter plate or a big cup of khichdi.
Add 1 and half cup of sieved maida/all purpose flour.
Throw in 1/4th cup of fine semolina and 1/4th cup of sieved rice flour. And one tbsp of gram flour.
Add dry ingredients like, 2 tbsp jeera/cumin seeds, one tsp ajwain/ carom seeds, one tsp turmeric powder, one tbsp red chilly powder, some dry fenugreek/kasuri methi if you have. Add a pinch of baking soda and a pinch of castor sugar.

 

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Now add two big onions chopped very very finely and a tbsp of chopped garlic. These added an interesting dimension indeed since the touch of onions added a sweet and crunchy taste/texture.

 

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Knead it into a pastry kind of crumble. Do not over knead. Not soft but slightly firm. Add flour as per your judgement here keeping in mind that you would need to roll them and cut into pieces later.

 

Take tiny batches of these kneaded dough and spread on flat surface with a rolling pin. Not too thick. Maintain medium thickness.

Pierce all over.

Cut into pieces of your desired shape.

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In a deep bottomed pan, heat sufficient oil for deep frying.

Once smoky hot, add these bits and let fry till crisp. Golden brown. Place them in paper towel so excess oil gets absorbed.

 

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Let them stand for about 20 minutes.

Enjoy them crisp with a cuppta tea!!

 

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Good to keep in mind:

You can also make soft round  flatbreads /parathas  with them if you do not want to deep fry

Cumin seeds add great taste so add as per your whim

Since these have onions and left overs its better not to store them beyond a day. Have them fresh once slightly cooled.

 

 

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Sweet Mushy Banana Coconuty Fritters

Banana fritters

 

 

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Happens to me a lot..but these fritters… I tell you they are delicious if you have the slightest of sweet tooth!

 

Fitness-Motivational-Quotes-Eating-Banana-Is-A-Natural-Cure-To-Reduce-The-Effects-Of-Stress-And-Anxiety

 

 

 

I enjoy very particular kind of sweet stuff.

And I love these. Have always done. Sweet, savoury, deep fried,  with a lingering soft taste in the mouth and something you can pop in the mouth the next day too…and the next…

Nostalgia. Family. Togetherness.  The fritters personify these things and more…

HOW  DO I MAKE IT ?

Take two almost ripe bananas to prepare this recipe. Mash them and keep aside.

3/4th cup all purpose flour / maida

Two tbsp wheat flour/ aata

One tbsp rava/sooji/semolina (For crispiness)

Two tbsp rice flour (For crispiness)

l/4th cup of ready made desiccated coconut or better still FRESHLY GRATED COCONUT..

3/4 cup of milk

1/4th cup of condensed milk

half a cup of sugar

2 tbsp jaggery

1 tsp baking powder and a punch of baking soda (Just avoid if you don’t want to use these)

 

 

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Mix mashed banana, sieved all purpose flour, sieved wheat flour, sieved rava (semolina), sieved rice flour, coconut,  and sieved baking powder and soda together.

Now, preheat a deep bottomed solid pan to melt the sugar and jaggery. I usually screw up sugar caramelization process so got to be careful if you are new at this too..

Once slightly preheated add the sugar granules. Let them turn brown from the edges. Stir initially and then stop stirring to avoid them from getting crystallized. These sugary lil things can turn evil and go all sticky and hard within miliseconds.. Add the jaggery pieces after 10 secs or so . Just when the sugar granules are slightly light brown add the milk and stir till it all mixes well into a smooth consistency.

Add this beautiful liquid to the dry mixture of flour. Add slowly and keep mixing with a whisk  to avoid lumps. Add the condensed milk and let it cuddle up well too.The consistency should be slightly runny like a pancake batter but not too thin or thick. Add milk accordingly.

Now, while this liquid rests, take a deep bottomed pan in a gastop  and fill with two cups of oil for deep frying. I like to add 1/4th of clarified butter or ghee too for a beautiful flavour.  Let the oil get smoky on medium flame.

Now, take a ziplock plastic bag and fill it with the banana, flour mixture that you have already gotten ready. Or use hands!

In the hot oil deep fry by slowly adding little rounds of the mixture. See how they puff up ! 🙂 Dont worry about the shapes 😉 its okay to have uneven shapes. They add to the rustic memories…and traditions of cooking homemade recipes..

 

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Do it in a batch of 4 to 5 fritters if you are new at this.  Keep an eye to make sure the oil doesn’t get so hot as to burn up, so keep lowering the heat as and when you feel the fritters are going too dark. Look for golden brown . Try different shapes if you want.

Some like to shallow fry it too like tiny pancakes…

Let the oil get absorbed in a paper towel every time you take they off the pan after frying.

 

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Participated in an interactive forum Fiesta Friday hosted at http://thenovicegardener.wordpress.com/

Fiesta Friday Badge Button I party @

 

 

 

Maggi Chowmein Style

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Instant yet elaborate… sometimes we need to taste something restaurant style but want to cut down on the time. Neither do we want to step out and eat at a restaurant at all times. Like Hakka Noodles or chowmein?

Say when you are watching your favourite show on TV and crave to bing on something delicious and mouth smacking…

We have all grown up with it. In India Maggi is a hot favourite of most kids…and even adults!!!

Instant noodles that needs to be boiled in water with the spice mix or the ever popular maggi masala! that comes with it in the package, is enjoyed in different styles, by different people.

This is one of the very many styles I like relishing  my Maggi Instant Noodles…

To whip up a delicious, easy and comforting Maggi chowmein style, heat half tsp of butter and 2 tpsp oil in a tapered pan..

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Saute onions

Throw in two small sliced onions and let it saute for a minute. The onions needn’t turn golden brown. Let them be slightly raw or just sauteed and soft.

At this time also, add 10 to 12 diced square potato cubes… Add thinly slit green chillies, pinch of garlic paste, and let it all saute for another minute.

Add the maggi noodles after potatoes turn tender

WP_20140902_040Add the maggi spice or masala  that comes with it and mix well.

Sprinkle half tsp black pepper powder.

WP_20140902_038Stir for few seconds and add few tbsps  of water. The water should be sufficient enough to give sufficient wetness to the mix in the pan. We do not want this recipe to be very watery like a normal maggi.

Cover with a lid and let cook for 7 to 8 minutes.

Sprinkle some Italian seasoning for added flavours and some chopped coriander…

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Crunch of Mix Exotic Veggies

Sometimes variety of ingredients turn into an exotic memorable dish!

A culinary experience worth diving into and experimenting with flavours, spices and methods.

A way for learning and sharing and rejuvenating.

 

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Below is a recipe for a extravagant experience of cooking with colourful, protein rich, and beautiful fresh  ingredients. Touch of Indian spices and exotic mix of herbs and fruits and veggies.

Good to have with flat breads/ hakka garlic noodles/ toasted white or brown bread, or lovely steamed aromatic hot rice!

 

Tender Babycorns: 250 gms. Slit long and thin into two portions

Fresh Capsicum: 100 gms. Thin long slices

Paneer/Cottage Cheese : 250 gms. Thin Long Slices. Or square little cubes.

Sweet Corns : One packet/200 gms.

Mushroom: 150 gms. Square cubes after cleaning.

Onions: One thinly slit

If you really are in the mood: Optional: Thin slices of blanched beans,broccoli and raw thin long carrots. More colours and crunch mix!

 

Put the cut babycorns, sweet corns, and ,mushroom in  boiling water. Let boil for little less than a minute. Transfer the content (be careful)to ice-cold water and let stand for five minutes. Drain with a sieve and let dry. This tip helps retain nutrition of veggies and keeps the flavour and crunchiness intact!

In a pre-heated sautepan, add two tbsp Oilve Oil.

Add Onions. Saute continuously for 30 secs on high heat with a pinch of salt, Add two tbsp grated ginger and two tbsp fresh crushed garlic with pinch of black pepper and four to five long slit green chillies. Saute for a minute. Add 1 tpsp Coriander leaves and saute for 30 secs for a beautiful aroma and flavour.

Add one bowl of fresh tomato paste and saute till the oil oozes out from the sides or till the tomatoes get completely cooked and reduced in quantity.

Meanwhile in Another saute pan: Add one and half tbsp butter with another pinch of freshly ground, crushed black pepper.  Add pinch of salt. Add mushrooms, and babycorn, Saute on medium high heat for two to three minutes. Reduce the heat and let cook for another minute. Add capsicum and sweet corns. Thrown in one tsp of golden brown roasted sesame seeds covered with one tsp of honey.

Additionally, while you throw in the babycorns you can also throw in half bowl of long thin beans and carrots and blanched brocolli for wonderful colours and flavours and special crunch. Sprinkle one tsp cornflour and sprinkle bits of water to avoid stickiness and difficulty in stirring.

Add, half tsp readymade red chilly powder or freshly crushed roasted and hydrated red chillies. Add half tsp oregano. Add salt as required.

Please keep adjusting the heat. Initially high heat and gradually lower the heat. DONT OVERCOOK!

Once slightly goldenish and not overcooked add in the cooked onion, ginger, garlic, tomato mixture to it and saute and mix well. Add half 1/4th cup of warm water and 1/4th cup of “mixed milk and curd” whipped in equal proportions. Stir till the liquid thickens with a nice thick coating of  the spices.

In a small pan add one to 2 tsp Oil. Let heat. Add one tsp sugar. Let heat. Be careful since it gets very heated. Sprinkle the same on the dish for nice sizzle and restaurant like flavour and cover with lid. Let stand for atleast five minutes.

 

Sprinkle chopped coriander, (optionally also add mixed crushed  herbs) on top.

Now for that master touch of exotica, add one tbsp of lightly roasted pineapple pieces, and some cut cherries on top with another sprinkle of grated paneer on top most layer!

 

I haven’t had the chance of cooking it recently, so no photographs clicked by me are available. However sharing some images from google for reference.


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Want to learn How to make Paneer at Home

Here is a link from pinterest

 

 

 

http://www.pinterest.com/pin/464011567829590530/

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Hot, Sweet and sour Caramelized onions 

For the onion lovers and lovers of tangy n hot flavours here is something to easy, simple and worth repeating.

Use two big onions, chop them long and fine thin….

Use a saute pan, preheat it for a 30 seconds.

Add one tbsp oil of your choice Once the oil is heated add pinch of cumin seeds.

Once the cumin seeds turn light brown and crisp, add one finely chopped green chilly and bit of crushed garlic.

Saute. Add the chopped onions.

Saute and stir well on low heat.

Don’t let the onions burn, be patient.

Once they start changing colours, add pinch of turmeric powder, half teaspoon of red chilly powder,1/4 tsp of sugar (since onions would already have its own sweetness), and one tsp chopped fine coriander leaves, bit of salt. Let the onions caramelize.  Add drops of lemon in the end. Enjoy as an accompaniment with flat breads or rice!

Still life with a kettle by Paul Cezanne normal_without-onions-julia-child-quote-print © Copyright 2014 CorbisCorporation

Homesick? try Mashed potatoes and Buttery Moist Rice

Well, there are times when you are HOMESICK, nostalgic, cribby and what not.
This ones a very peculiar recipe. And so Simple! Either you will like it , or you won’t. But worth a try.

downloadFor say two people,

Boil two and half cups of water in a big pot.

Add a cup of your favourite rice (smaller grains rice types are better)

Add half tsp salt

Once the rice feels all gooey and there is still water left switch off the flame/cooktop.

Keep aside in a hot casserole.

Parallely, boil 4 to 5 boiled potatoes with pinch of salt added till 3 whistles atleast in pressure cooker or till absolutely soft. Peel after dipping the potatoes in ice cold water , so peeling becomes easier.

Mash them well with your palms or a masher.

Add half a chopped raw onion to the mashed potato. Add bit of salt, few drops of mustard oil,  chopped coriander leaves.

Now, have this with the cooked extra moist/almost watery rice. Add butter or raw mustard oil to the hot cooked rice. With every bite of rice and mashed potato , have bits of raw green chilly.

Oh, you can also as an accompaniment have the poppy seeds recipe I shared the other day. Click here to know more

https://noodles4thoughts.wordpress.com/2014/06/23/poppy-seeds-paste-with-raw-mustard-oil-steamed-moist-rice/

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Quench Quick Dessert Craving 

Add chocolate sauce between two slices of bread and grill them with butter till golden brown!

Have them and serve them happy!

 

I can’t think. …

I can’t think. Just name an ingredient/dish you would want a recipe on and I would try and provide a post on the same (Preferably Indian and Vegetarian)

 

 

image source: google

image source: google

adrak ki chai and life!

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Ginger tea is the quint-essential ingredient to my day!
The flavour rejuvenates my senses and can make one believe in life all over again 😉

Tea and India is an inseparable pair. To know more about Tea/ Chai read below.

Chai (pronounced as a single syllable and rhymes with ‘pie’) is the word for tea in many parts of the world. It is a centuries-old beverage which has played an important role in many cultures.

Excerpt from chai-tea.org/ :

Chai from India is a spiced milk tea that has become increasingly popular throughout the world. It is generally made up of:

• rich black tea
• heavy milk
• a combination of various spices
• a sweetener
The spices used vary from region to region and among households in India. The most common are cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and pepper. Indian chai produces a warming, soothing effect, acts as a natural digestive aid and gives one a wonderful sense of well being. It’s difficult to resist a second cup.

 

 

Drinking chai is part of life in India and most Indian’s are amazed at all the current fuss in the West. Many who have traveled in India come away with fond chai drinking experiences. We have included many of these in our Chai Experiences section.

In the past three years we’ve seen a phenomenal growth in the popularity and interest in chai. Chai has become very common at over-the-counter specialty beverage shops and there is a growing line of prepackaged consumer products. Many industry analysts are predicting that chai will eventually become as popular and common as coffee lattes and cappuccinos.

Great chai can often be found in Indian restaurants along with great food, but making your own chai provides immense satisfaction (and makes the house smell yummy!). Recipes and tastes for chai vary widely and a multitude of chai recipes are used around the world.

Indian grocers carry various chai masala mixes which you can use to make your own chai. Commercially produced concentrates can be found at many health food grocers and coffee shops. Ingredients for making your own chai are available just about everywhere. See our Recipes Section for a wide variety of chai recipes.

Of course the modern world has elevated chai to new planes of experience–chai ices, milkshakes, chocolate chai, non-fat, low-cal sweeteners, decaf, and so on. We have included a section on New Chai Serving Ideas.

We prefer traditional freshly made chai: hot, creamy, fragrant with black tea, fresh cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, peppercorns and enough sugar to bring out the spice flavor. While we personally drink regular tea without sugar, chai must have sweetness or the spices seem to lose their full robustness.


How to make Ginger Tea:

For making 2 cuppa Chai/Tea:

Take half a cup of water in a saucepan and heat. When its starts bubbling, add half tsp of chai patti or branded tea leaves to it (I prefer red label natural or even tajmahal is good)

 

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Along with it add half tablespoon of of grated ginger. Add two cloves, and tiny bit of crushed elaichi to it and tiny pinch of black pepper powder. Let it come to further boil till a gentle yet strong aroma fills your senses to the brim!

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Image Source: spicelines.com

Add 1 and half cup of milk to the liquid along with 2 big spoons of sugar as desired.

Switch off the gas/flame/stove for half a  minute.

Switch it on again and bring to a quick boil.

Strain the same through a sieve and relish the monsoons!

 

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Tricks &  Tips:

1)Keep a check that the final output that is the chai is not too blackish in colour . The colour should be slightly brownish and milkish. So make sure not to add too much of tea leaves and not too boil it beyond a point.

2) Stuff other than ginger are optional. It varies according to taste preference.

3)Its good to taste a slightly creamy frothfilled chai just like coffee..just not to that extent. So, all you need to do it keep stirring the liquid in between once milk is added and making it slightly frothy as possible.

4)Serve/have this tea hot! Sip it as ease to relish the flavours.

5)Try Mathris/bhujia sev or your fav biscuits with it just like Oreos dipped in milk 🙂

6) Make sure to separate the cream/malai from milk while adding to the liquid

 

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Poppy seeds paste with raw mustard oil & steamed moist rice

image: google

 

Monsoon & hot cuppa rice!

Poppy seeds raw paste, drizzled with mustard oil, green chillies, hint of salt, with steaming hot rice! 

Source: http://raindropsbasmatirice.wordpress.com

Monsoons are here and what better than a hot plate of steamed rice with my favourite Poshto !

image source: ebay

Here you need to grind the poppy seeds (khuskhus) to a coarse paste. Traditionally the same is done in a stone mortar and pestle to get that perfect texture.

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However the trick for today’s generation is to soak the poppy seeds in some water overnight and then grind it in the food processor.

Poppy seeds are popular in West Bengal as recipes of aloo poshto or “potato & poppy seeds dish”… and many others.. Poppy seeds pastes add great taste to traditional aloo dum recipes as well.

Image Source:ashcooking.blogspot.com99bef14df378ef36364d416d4335bc14 (1)

Now to this paste of say one small bowl, which I like un-cooked… add mustard oil (about 2 to 3 tbs), finely chopped or slightly grinded green chillies, salt (half tsp), and two drops of lemon juice.

Ah, heavenly!

 

image: pinterest

Enjoy it just like that with Hot plate of steamed rice. Let the rice be cooked all moist…

image: coffeetalkwithbarkha.blogspot.com

 

Note: The images have been sourced from google images and pinterest… 

 

 

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