How many of you have thought to eat light, maybe only some salad or soup for a meal. Well, some days I do get that kind of a feeling, lately a frequent one. I have tried making salads that would suffice as a whole meal, and they taste good too, and hence it is time to share it here.
Couple days back, I had a get-together of my girlfriends at my home, and had made a vegetarian lunch. A meal that is set on a table should have a fantastic salad display is always my thought. I decided on this salad as I had some of the leftover boiled cowpeas, and I like to season them and make this salad, looks appealing and tastes good too. This is less time consuming and when one has to cook lot of dishes and keep the food ready before your friends turn up, then this is perfect.
Cowpeas: 100 Gm (Boiled)
Red Bell pepper: 1
Fine Sev: 2 Tbsp
Chaat Masala: 1 Tsp
Black Pepper: 1 Tsp
Cumin Powder: 1 Tsp
Salt: To taste
Oil: 1 Tsp
Chop finely half of the onion and tomato.
Heat a pan, add the oil, then the chopped onion, sautee till pinkish. Then add the finely chopped tomato and cook.
Add the seasonings -cumin powder, salt, chaat masala and black pepper and then the boiled cowpeas and cook for 5 min and switch off the gas flame.
Chop the salad vegetables-cucumber, onion, bell pepper and tomato and put in a bowl and season with salt, pepper and lime juice.
Take a round deep dish. Place the cowpeas in the center. Arrange the salad vegetables around the cowpeas. Sprinkle the Sev in the center over the cowpeas. Place round lime slices as eyes and a green chili as the nose. Cut thin tomato slice and place it as the lips, and we have our salad face ready :).
Have fun trying this out. When the dinning table is laid with food, the salad face sure looks appealing and tastes great too. I enjoyed setting this salad on my dining table for my friends.
Greetings from ashu to all my lovely readers who keep me connected to the blog on a daily basis, in spite of me not being regular in my blog postings. It is an overwhelming feeling and gives me a sense of satisfaction to view that maybe someone out there is trying out my style of cooking😃. Thank you folks.
June month saw me visiting my homeland for the wedding of my dearest nephew, a tall handsome young man. It was a week full of fun time with my ever-increasing family, the innumerable wedding functions, grand meals, the dancing, and not to forget all the decking up in lovely saris etc. Weddings in my family have always been grand affairs and the trend still continues even for this generation of kids. All in all it was a fantastic time spent with the whole extended family. The month also brings with it the advancing Monsoons to my homeland, the much awaited rains after a harsh summer. Living in this part of the world where there is scant rainfall and extreme summer months, the home bound trip during the harsh summers is always most cherished. The parched dry land gets soaked in the heavy downpour of rain, petrichor emanating from the ground makes it a heavenly experience. The markets are flooded with fresh stocks of seasonal fruits and vegetables, the foodie in me is on a drooling junket all along. Though it turned out to be a short trip, but I enjoyed some fantastic food dishes, Amrakhand being one of the most favourite. I will be posting my homemade Amrakhand recipe as July post, do look out for it.
Today I share here my way of preparing dry Bhindi masala(Ladies’ finger) recipe with you all. This recipe is on my list as one of dishes when I plan a vegetarian meal or as a vegetable portion while planning a non vegetarian dish. It is extremely simple and is one of the easy-to-make-dishes. When buying the Okra do select the small variety as they can be kept full length and not cut into small size. In case small variety is not available then take which ever you get and try to cut even sized portions.
Preparing the vegetables before starting to make the dish is convenient and prevents burning of the ingredients that are in oil.
Onion: 1 Medium
Garlic: 2-3 cloves
Turmeric: 1/2 Tsp
Salt: As per taste.
Oil: 3 Tbsp. (As per preference, but it is always healthy to eat as less oil as one can)
Chaat masala Powder: 1Tbsp
Red Chilli Powder: 2Tsp
Dry Coriander Powder: 1Tbsp
Cumin Powder: 1Tsp
Garam Masala: 1 Tsp.
Wash, clean and pat dry the okra with a kitchen towel. Cut and discard both the ends of each okra and give a slit to it so we can apply dry masala paste to the insides. Peel and slice the garlic. Slice the onion.
Take a small bowl, put 1 tbsp oil and add and mix the dry masala powders with it. (Mix these with oil-chaat masala, coriander powder, cumin powder, little red chilli powder, salt, pinch of turmeric, and the garam masala.)
Apply this masala paste inside the slit okra and keep aside for 10-15 min.
Heat a Kadai or pan on the gas stove. Add the remaining oil to the kadai. Add the sliced garlic, onions and saute till the onions are pinkish in colour. Add the chilli powder, turmeric, and salt. Then put the prepared okra and cover the kadai or pan for 2-3 minutes with a lid and remove the cover. Cook the okra on slow heat for 10-15 min or till they are just soft. Once done empty into a serving bowl and garnish with freshly chopped green coriander.
Tip: One could also sprinkle some red pomegranate pearls on top as garnish to give it a more inviting look.
Each kitchen has its unique way of preparing the vegetables, though the ingredients might be same but a difference in method results in different taste, and this is my favourite method for preparing the small okra. I prepare a lentil combination or Dal Tadka to go along with this dish as a lunch or dinner time meal. Do give it a try and leave a comment if you like it.
Momos, a nutritious, healthy and extremely simple recipe. These are steamed dumplings made of refined flour with stuffing of choice. The stuffing could be vegetarian or with meat, depending on ones preference and taste. They go well with a flaming hot, bit spicy and tangy tomato dip, the stuffing inside is kept mild just with seasoning of salt, pepper (or red chilli powder) and herbs. The oil or fat content is nil or almost negligible, depending on the filling used for stuffing the momos. Today I made the kheema stuffing a bit spicy using red chilli powder.
My first experience of eating these yummy bites goes way long back that I cannot seem to remember. During Delhi stay one could see them being sold at many road side corners of Delhi markets. They are served piping hot, direct from the steamer on to the plate and hence during the cold winters were the preferred choice of kids during the Bazaar visits.
However the memorable experience that I would like to share here is from our visit to Nepal. Every time I make or eat momos I am transported back to Nagarkot, a hilly place in Nepal. After a tiring journey from Kathmandu we had reached the beautiful location of Nagarkot, and after settling in the resort ventured out to explore the place. Walking down hill along the narrow lanes amidst loud talking and accompanying laughter, suddenly the lights went off and it was darkness. Load-shedding of electricity is common in Nepal, we learnt from our tour. We stopped to eat some refreshments at a roadside homely restaurant that we found was open and settled ourselves on the chairs and sat in the light candle. These types of homely restaurants are common sight in hilly areas with the household members helping around, this was one of that type of place.
The whole bunch of us tourists ordered Momos, the wait for the order to be ready was almost for an hour, but worth waiting. The lady of the house started the preparation from scratch and our tummies kept growling. In candle light when our food order was served with a flaming hot spicy dip, it was the most satisfying experience. The taste of the momos eaten that night still lingers. They were simple yet so delicious, and all were finished in seconds after being served on the table. Returning back home from the trip, I tried making the dip in my kitchen and since then have always made this tangy dip to go along with the momos.
Last night I made these Kheema Momos for dinner with the thoughts of my late dad in mind, in his memory, he loved mutton mince and would have loved eating this dish from my kitchen. Today I share this here as the first recipe of this New Year 2015 in remembrance of my beloved dad.
Wishing you all a very Happy and Healthy New Year.
INGREDIENTS: For outer cover
Refined flour: 150 g (1 &1/2 bowl)
Water: 3/4 bowl (for making dough)
Salt: a pinch
STUFFING: Mutton Mince: 250 g (Boiled)
Oil: 1 Tbsp
Ginger Garlic paste: 1/2 Tsp
Garam Masala: 2 Tsp
Red Chilli Powder: 2 Tsp (as per preference)
Chaat Masala: 1Tsp
Coriander Powder: 1 Tsp
Salt: To taste
Coriander leaves: Few
Green Chillies: ( 1-2 Optional)
Turmeric Powder: 1/2 Tsp
Take the refined flour in a bowl and add a pinch of salt to it. Adding the required amount of water make a medium soft dough. Cover and keep it aside.
Heat a kadai/thick bottomed pan and add the oil. Saute the finely chopped green chillies, chopped green coriander leaves, and then add the dry powders. To this add the boiled kheema, do not add the water or stock of the boiled mince meat. Keep stirring and make it a completely dry filling.
Make small round balls of the dough and roll the dough balls into thin round puris. Take spoonful of the kheema filling and put in the centre of the puri and seal the edges by bringing them together at the centre.
Grease the steam basket of the cooker with oil and arrange the momos inside the basket and steam in the cooker for 10 min.
Arrange the steaming hot momos on a plate and serve with the spicy hot dip. Recipe of the dip is posted as a separate post.
Enjoy the steaming hot momos as a starter in the meal or as light dinner dish. Happy cooking along with me this 2015!
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