Wednesday, March 30, 2011

How to make Peas Pulao in Microwave | Step by Step Recipe

Truth be said I had lot of plans to make something else! Looks like it was never to happen. When Priya decided to have Rice dishes made in Microwave, I was happy to try new ones. I haven't been able to do that. Instead I ended making my  favorite dish, Peas Pulao and this time in Microwave. Gets down within 20 mins, max 25 mins. but you can easily make it for your lunch box or Kid's as my kids like this pulao too.

The next edition of MEC is hosted by Lataji. She is asking us all to make a dish that can fit the theme of Lunch Box Menu, right from starter to dessert. So show us how you enjoy your lunch box.

It's been a hectic week for us. I have been down with severe cough and fever. I am never the one who gets down with such things and it caught us on surprise. And looks like I have passed it on to others at home. With school reopening for a month for the boys, I am so worried if they can go on the first day. When I think about it, it is surely funny. When the cough starts from me, it resonates, goes around the house and comes back to me. it's more like calling rolls! So the Su family might be soon be called Daggu Family..:)..Well I know it's bad joke!

On the flip side of it, I am kind of enjoying this as I get to indulge in bread jam and butter, which I avoid! Well you know there is an up side for everything. Got to look at things that are better right!

I know it is not apt topic before discussing a delicious Peas Pulao but then..I was so glad that my colleagues enjoyed my lunch box as I enjoyed my share of bread butter jam.

Thankfully both the boys went to their school today by bus and by evening we eagerly waited to pick them up. Just as it might happen in a filmy style, they were not in the bus. They were boarded in the wrong bus and they had a merry round, finally went back to school to wait for us to pick them up. The whole place is sizzling with the cricket fever watching the match between India and Pak. Hubby dear is glued to the Tele. The day has been quite tiresome with it being so hot. The match is on the way..meanwhile read on this yummy yet simple pulao.



Step by Step pictures to make Peas Pulao in Microwave

Wash and soak rice for 15 - 20 mins

In a microwave safe bowl, add 2 tsp ghee and 1/2 tsp of oil, add all the whole spices, micro for 1 minute.
Then add finely chopped onion julienne, 1/2 tsp of ginger garlic paste micro for 2 mins.
Next add  2 long green chilies chopped into 3 pieces along with fresh peas. Micro for 2 mins.
Drain the rice and add to the bow. Stir well. Add 2 cups of water and micro for 20 mins.
Stir in intervals of 10 mins. Mine was almost done by 19 mins.
But you can allow it to rest in the same bowl by covering it with a lid.
Shift through with fork to separate the grains.

It's almost the same recipe as the Peas Pulao that I already posted. Except the whole spices included Shah Jeera, Javitri and Anise Star.
Sending this to Priya who is hosting the MEC event themed on Rice.

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Saturday, March 26, 2011

How to make Dal Fry Restaurant style | Step by Step Recipe | Lunch Box Series : LBS#60

When we eat out, it is normally the North Indian food that gets ordered. Naturally the vegetarian gravy is always Paneer Butter Masala no doubt. When there are more vegetarians dining along with me, the other dish that gets the next place will always be the Dal Fry. Dhal Fry complements the spicy paneer Butter Masala and makes a great combo with the vegetarian fried rice too. It's always very mild but is rightly done in all quarters.

I always wondered why it is called fry, because it is a liquid dish. We tag a fry to be a dry dish. I guess this gets it's name from the fact that the restaurant chefs have all the things pre-cooked for this dal and just fries it before serving. Of course same goes for all other things, except this dish is more of a sauteing than anything else.

Anyway when the Paneer Butter Masala is as good as the one we order out in restaurant, I wanted to try out this Dal fry. I believe the unique taste here is because of the Masoor dal. I was browsing through my recipe collection and came across this recipe that I must have got from my GDM group and wanted to try it right away. It has the same taste you get in the restaurant and I made it for our Lunch box, paired with Jeera Rice.
 
This is a simple dal that can be served with rice/rotis. Especially with fried rice and Naans.


Step by Step Picture Recipe

Take both Masoor dal and Moong dal in a pressure cooker.
Add green chilies, garlic and ginger to be pressure cooked together.
The dal is almost mashed, so you don't have to mash it any further.

In a non stick pan, add ghee, saute onions, red chilies
Then add onions, saute till it turns brown.
 Next goes the tomatoes, add salt for it to turn soft.
 Add the cooked dals.
Mix well and add water as required.






Bring to boil.


Dal Fry ~ Restaurant Style
Cooking Time from start to finish: 30 mins.
Serves 4.

Ingredients Needed:
Masoor dal / Red Lentil - 3/4 cup
Yellow Moong dal / Split Green gram - 1/4 cup
Green chillies - 2-3
Grated Ginger - 1 tsp
Garlic, crushed - 1 tsp
Turmeric powder a pinch
Salt to taste
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Dry Red chillies - 1-2
Onion  - 1 medium
Tomato - 1 medium
Ghee - 2 tbsp
Chopped Coriander leaves - 3 tbsp
Butter or Cream for topping - 1 tbsp (opt)

Method to prepare:

Wash the dals and pressure cook with water along with ginger, garlic, turmeric, salt and broken green chillies. The dal should be well done and not too watery. If you want you can mash the dal a bit with the back of the ladel

Heat the ghee in a non stick pan, add the cumin seeds and red chilli. Then addd onions and fry till light brown.

Next add the finely chopped tomato and fry for 2 mins. Once this is done add the dals and simmer on medium heat for 5 mins

Finally garnish with coriander and top with cream/butter (optional)

Serve hot with rotis/parathas


Notes

If you are serving with Naans the dal can be little thicker
Please remember that the dal thickens a bit as it cools or loses temperature
If you want to avoid ghee you can use regular cooking oil. But the restaurant effect comes out more by the addition of ghee.


Other North Indian Recipes

Lunch Box Recipes
Simple Dals

Make this for your Sunday lunch and enjoy!

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Paneer Chicken with Cheese Fry

With the school closing for summer vacation for the boys and annual exams beginning for Konda, it has left us worried about how Konda will prepare for her exams with the boys running around non stop. It's just couple of days since their vacation and they are already not sure what to do with their time. This weekend we again planned for a morning swim and then for the Holi celebrations at the club.

The kids were going on and on about going for the celebrations on time. And they won't just let me sit or do anything without reminding about the Holi. While Chinnu was saying it was Poli, and even remembered the time they fed the deer en route to Tirupati, he was telling that to his cousins, that we are going for the Poli celebrations. I had to correct him saying it wasn't Poli but Holi. Peddu, the ever questioner, came up asking what Holi was. I said he can wait for couple of hours by which time he will know it for himself.

We landed at the venue to see the celebrations were on way. People were colourfully decked with pink, green and yellow. We did a customary splash of colours on ourselves. The kids tried sitting at one spot for a while, getting highly motivated to join the group of kids playing in the water. Soon they were given the water guns and it was the beginning. All three enjoyed their stunt in the water, shooting at the other kids, mindless of the sun looking down at us. It was quite hot!

Finally after much persuasion, we got them to get changed and sit for lunch. It was an interesting menu with Palak Puri, Masala Puri with Aloo Muttar Tamatar finished with Jalabi. I stood watching the chef swing his hands in expertise, swirling the rings in hot oil, quickly removing them to dip in sugar syrup. I asked him how he made, he was smart enough not to reveal the recipe. Well, so much for asking! We came back home for an afternoon siesta, which naturally I didn't take.

Coming to the recipe for today, this is a strange combination of Paneer and Chicken garnished with Cheese that goes so well as a starter for dinner parties. Amma makes it and I got to see how she makes it. Since hubby dear is not a person who will mix paneer with chicken, the verdict came from Dad that it was very delicious.

Paneer Chicken with Cheese Fry

Ingredients Needed:

For the Marinade


Chicken - 1/4 kg
Salt to taste
Turmeric powder a pinch
Lemon juice - 1 tsp

For the Fry

Paneer - 100 gms
Cheese - 50 gms
Capsicum - 1 medium
Ginger Garlic paste - 1 tsp
Onions paste - 1
Tomato paste - 1/2 cup
Chili powder -1 tsp,
Garam masala - 1/2 tsp
Oil - 2 tsp
Salt to taste

Method to prepare:

For the Marinade

Wash and cut chicken into bite size pieces. Marinate it with Turmeric powder, lemon juice for 1/2 hr.

For making the Fry


Heat a non stick pan, add oil, saute ginger garlic paste, followed by onion paste, Fry for couple minutes.

Then add cubed capsicum pieces, fry for a while till the capsicum softens a bit.

Next add the tomato puree, fry for a minute. Once this is done, add chicken marinade, fry well.

Add chili powder, 1 cup water, bring to boil. Then simmer for 4 mins for the chicken to get cooked well.

Once chicken is cooked, add paneer cubes, garam masala, fry for few mins. Just before taking the dish off, garnish with grated cheese and finely coriander leaves. If you wish for the cheese to mix in, saute it, else you can serve as such.





Notes:

This is served as a dry dish, looks more like chili chicken or chicken 65 with masalas coating the pieces.
Paneer can be fried before adding, but I haven't done it here.
Cheese can be allowed to melt if you like it spread. But since I didn't add mozzarella cheese, it didn't spread.

For me, making chicken was never an issue but making it with paneer and not eating it, was..:) anyway was happy seeing Dad enjoying it.

How to make Paneer at Home
Other Chicken Starters

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Sunday, March 20, 2011

Carrot Idli | How to dress up Idlis | Indian Breakfast Recipes

Well this is not exactly a dish with cooked Idlis, but rather with the batter that is a day or two old. Normally when we grind Idli batter, the idlis are made the same day, else it tends to get sour, especially in this summer. So that's when we think of doing these dressing up the idlis before they are steamed, which makes it more interesting. If you see my previous post on Plain Onion Idli or Sauteed Masala Idli, it is a quick way to dress up a soured idli batter.

It was typically one of those days when I didn't have an idea on what to make for us. With Kid's lunch or breakfast, if I haven't planned ahead, somehow I end up making something they like and they are packed off to school. Then comes the thought of breakfast for the adults at home. Sometime back I had used grated carrot to make Carrot Coconut Idli with Idli Rava, but somehow I had felt the carrot wasn't enough in the batter. So this time decided to make something new by adding pureed carrot to the batter and seasoning it.

It was a rush hour and I just couldn't find time to take pictures step by step, but I really wished I did, seeing the end result. The idlis turned out so pretty, very colourful. 



Carrot Idli ~ Dressed up Idli with Carrot puree

Ingredients Needed:

Idli batter - enough to make 8 idlis
Carrot puree - made from 2 big carrots, almost 1 & 1/2 puree
Onions - 1 medium
Green Chilis - 2 medium

For seasoning

Mustard seeds, urad dal  - 1/2 tsp
Channa Dal - 1 tsp
Curry leaves -  4 -5 nos
Salt to taste
Oil - 1 tsp

Method to prepare:

Check this post to know how to make Idlis
Wash and roughly chop the carrots and puree them using little water.
Mix the carrot puree to the idli batter. Add the finely chopped onions and green chilies.
Heat a pan with oil, add mustard seeds, urad dal, let it splutter. Then add channa dal and curry leaves.
When the dals are browned lightly, add it to the batter and mix well.
Grease your Idli plate with oil/ghee, pour a ladle full of this batter into the moulds and steam them as you would do with your regular idlis. I did for about 15 mins.
Once done, allow them to cool down a bit before removing them from plates.
Serve with your favorite chutney.


Other Idli varieties

How to make Idlis
14 Idlies and Sambar
Kanchipuram Idli
Carrot Coconut Idli with Idli Rava
Idly in microwave
Masala Idli
Plain Onion Idli
Sauteed Masala Idli

Interesting Chutneys that makes a great combo

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Monday, March 14, 2011

Bajji Mirapakaya Pachadi | Green Pepper Relish | Step by Step Recipe

Heart aches at the events that takes place, natural calamities happen when you least expect. When so many are suffering, life goes on, yet we pause many a times, spelled shocked to accept, yet carry on with what we have to do. It's been a sober weekend, didn't do much other than loitering around.

Planned for a park visit for the kids, as their father said he wouldn't be able to take them. Finally we all landed at the swimming pool. Moments such as these make you want to capture time in your palm and not think further.

Today's recipe is one such dish, memories of a childhood spent enjoying this chutney. It was by chance that Amma made this once, and we loved it so much that it became a regular at home. Amma made sure to make this during the season, which I am not sure I know. But it must be during this season or rather I know see that in our markets this kind of Green pepper is quite common, what with it's famous affliction to Marina Beach. Amma makes it with equal amount of tomatoes and it used to quite spicy and tasted awesome with Dosas.


When I made this a while ago, prices of onions and tomatoes were skyrocketing. I didn't want to use so much of my pantry quote, not because I didn't want to buy more or spend, but for the simple reason I didn't want to give more reasons for the market to sore so much. We should learn to make it work with what we have and not go beyond our reach and make it a reason more for people who don't care for the common.

Anyway when I made this relish, it turned out different, because I made it differently. I promised myself that I will make it again what with the tomato being so excess right now.

These are the famous peppers that are used to make Bajjis, Pepper Fritters.

Wash, trim and chop into cubes, saute in oil till they turn colour

I used about equal amount of about 1 onions and tomatoes, sauteed well in oil

Allow it to cool, add salt and grind the onions, tomatoes first, then pulse the green peppers couple of times.

Make sure you don't grind this to a smooth paste, it tastes best when you can feel the peppers, crunchy onions.

Not required to add any other chilies or red chili powder as this will be spicy enough if you don't remove the seeds.

Serve with Dosas


Other Chutney Recipes for Dosas, Idlis, Rice


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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Cashew Nut Pakoda Curry ~ Weekend Cooking

For almost a year in between I was off the task of packing a lunch box for hubby dear. Not that it made any difference to what I cooked but at least removed the task of planning to cook those dishes that stayed hot for lunch. So most dishes that I make end up in Lunch box Series.

I find that I rarely plan for something new for the dinner as it gets late by the time I get home. When I decided on the Blogging Marathon I had to ensure I get back and immediately start on the cooking for the next day. When I started the second marathon, my boys used to come very excited to check if I was making any cakes or chocolates. They lost their interest after the third day as they are still not initiated into Chaats. By the time I got into the third marathon, they stopped bothering to check what I was making. So I decided I ought to get their interest back..:)

Coming to today's recipe, this was prepared along with Aloo Gobi Pulao and made a great combo with it being spicy. And a wonderful weekend special.


Cashew Nut Pakoda Curry

Ingredients Needed

For the Pakodas:

Whole Cashew nuts, plain - 100 gms
Besan / Chickpea flour / Bengal Gram flour - 150 gms
Ajwain / Bishop's weed - 1/2 tsp
Rice Flour - 2 tsp
Chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

For the gravy:

Onions - 150 gms
Ginger Garlic paste - 1 tsp
Tomato puree - 1 cup
Red chili powder - 1 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 tsp
Turmeric powder a pinch
Cloves - 2
Cinnamon - 2"
Cardamom - 2
Salt to taste
Oil - 2 tsp
Water as required
Coriander leaves - 2 tbsp

Method to prepare:

The Cashew pakodas:

Take all the ingredients in a bowl, mix well. Slowly add little water and mix to a tight dough. The flour should be covering the cashews completely and should not be loose.

Heat a kadai with oil, gently drop the cashew nuts into hot oil and cook on both sides until it is golden in colour. Remove on a kitchen towel and keep it aside

To make the gravy

Heat a pan, add the whole garam masala. Sauté well. Then add finely chopped onions.

When the onions start turning colour, add the ginger garlic paste. Cook for 2 mins, then add the tomato puree, red chili powder, coriander powder and turmeric. Allow it to cook for couple of minutes.

Then add water to get a thick consistency. Bring to boil and simmer for 5 mins. Finally add the finely chopped coriander leaves.

Just before serving, add the fried cashew nut pakodas.

Serve with Aloo Gobi Pulao.


Check other Vegetarian Gravies.

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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Aloo Gobi Pulao | Potato Cauliflower Pilaf ~ Weekend Cooking

This weekend we had gone for a temple visit early morning and thought we may not be on time for lunch at home. Since it was to be a quick visit and had to leave early, we went by ourselves without taking the kids. They had field day enjoying Amma's cooking and we were overjoyed that we could reach early and spend the rest of the day with the kids. 

Amma made this for us and Athamma insisted I take pictures and record so as to make it again. Because the boys caught us coming down, Chinnu won't let us in and we had to convince him saying we will take him for swimming. After that every other word was coined with the expected swimming in mind. Imagine our disappointment when on reaching we found that the swimming pool closed and the kids were so upset. So we again do something to please them, which resulted in going to their favorite food joint.

Coming to the recipe on hand, it was a combo of Aloo Gobi Pulao with Cashewnut Pakoda Curry




 
Alu Gobi Puloa ~ Potato Cauliflower Pilaf
 

Rice - 3 cups
Potato / Aloo - 3 medium
Cauliflower / Gobi - 200 gms
Onions - 1 medium
Green Chilli - 3 nos
Ginger Garlic paste - 1 tsp
Bay leaf
Shah jeera - 1 tsp
Clove, Cardamon, cinnamon - 2 each
Coriander leaves & Mint leaves - handful
Salt to taste
Oil & Ghee - 4 tbsp

Method to prepare:

Wash and soak the rice for 20 mins.

cut cauliflower into small florets, soak in hot water.

In a pressure cooker, add oil and ghee, add all the whole spices, shah jeera, bay leaf and saute.

Then add julienne onions, green chilies, saute till they turn colour, then add the ginger garlic paste.

When the ginger garlic paste is cooked well, add cubed potatoes and drained cauliflower. Saute well in sim flame.

Then add water, along with chopped coriander and mint leaves. When it starts boiling add the rice. Bring to a boil, add salt and cover with lid. Pressure cook for 2 whistles.






Enjoy and have a great week ahead

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Saturday, March 5, 2011

Microwave Curries & Gravies Round up

I almost forgot that I was yet to do the round up of the entries that came in for MEC Curries and Gravies. Only when I felt I was yet to do something, I had a look at my pending emails did I realise this overlook. So before I could do anything else, I thought I should get this round up done.

I know Microwave Easy Cooking Event is not really an event where I get flooded with entries but I always end up feeling happy with the entries that come by way. I have few friends who always support me and each time I get an entry from them, I feel so excited.

Before I go, of course this month it is being hosted by  Priya (Yallapantula) Mitharwal themed on Rice. Do check on the details and send us your entry.

Now lets see what we have for Curries and Gravies.!

First we have a rich Paneer Makhane made entirely in mw from Deeksha

Then from Nivedita comes a potato curry that reminds her of her mom's cooking.


Next comes Priya Suresh with two entries, Batata Humman made in mw & Zucchini Moru Curry

Richa Priyanka sending us a peas and carrot kurma

If those are not enough, then check out MW Kofta Curry made by Supriya

Then from me a Mixed Vegetable Kurma

Next we have two non veg entries.

A great looking bowl of prawns from Sudeshna
Sukanya sends in Microwave green chicken curry


I know the entries were less but I do hope I haven't missed any entry!

Thank you for sending in and I hope you make these and enjoy! Have a great weekend ahead.

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