Category Archives: recipes’

Green Chutney With Roasted Gram & Tulsi Leaves

Here are the step-by-step pics. They are self-explanatory. Next time, I will experiment with palak (spinach) leaves.

1. First assemble the ingredients, one onion, a small bunch each of leaves of mint (pudina), dhania (corriander), 3-4 green chillies, some curry leaves, Tulsi leaves, and half cup of roasted, de-skinned gram.

2. Wash all the leaves properly and grind them in a mixie with some salt as per taste.

3. Garnish.

Poha Cutlets, A 1-2-3-4 Recipe

As I mentioned in an earlier recipe too, what I enjoy most in cooking is ulilising leftover items to create a new food item that is tasty, nutritious, and gets consumed fast.

Apart from being environment friendly, there is always a sense of adventure and excitement associated with this exercise because you can’t be sure how the end product would be like. There is always the risk of ending up with another leftover item that no one wants to eat, that too, after an expenditure of precious time and other resources. But when it turns out well, you get a wonderful sense of achievement that stays with you for a long time.

On 29 September 2019, a Sunday, my weekly off, while rummaging through our fridge, I found some green chutney in a little katori, some cut paneer pieces, chopped carrots, and a 2-day old alu-baingan sabji which wasn’t such a big hit.

I had made the green chutney this time with roasted chana (whole gram) and Tulsi leaves, apart from green chillies, amchur, mint, coriander, and curry leaves. See here for recipe. https://jasbirchatterjeephotoblog.wordpress.com/2019/10/03/green-chutney-with-roasted-gram-tulsi-leaves/?preview=true

I took them all out and put them in a kneading bowl. I added a cupful of soaked poha (flattened rice), chopped onion, 2 tablespoons of besan (black gram powder) and salt. I didn’t need to add any spices as the chutney-Sabji combo was spicy enough by itself. I kneaded them all into a dough. Then I took out small balls from it and turned them into egg shaped rolls with my hands. After deep-frying them in batches tilll they were brown all over and placing them in tissue paper to drain out excess oil, I had a plateful of poha cutlets that disappeared quickly during our family breakfast!

Do try this out as a regular recipe and tell me how it works out. Here are the 4 pics. Because it is so easy to follow, I call it a 1-2-3-4 recipe.

Being a working woman, time is always a scarce resource and 1-2-3-4 recipes are the ones that suit me the most.

Green Peanut Chutney

Today, on 15 September 2019, I made my own version of a green chutney with roasted peanuts. It was for the first time that I used roasted peanuts in a chutney and it tasted absolutely heavenly! My family loved it. Its taste was similar to that of a coconut chutney.

Before going for work, my husband Sukhangshu asked me to keep some for him for dinner. I took that as a big complement.

I wondered why I didn’t try it out earlier. It’s so simple and easy to make, far easier than coconut chutney which I make very often. Coconut chutney requires almost 10 times more effort and time. You first need to crack a coconut and keep aside its water. Then you need to extract the edible part from its shell after hitting it several times from diferent angles. Next, you have to grate the coconut. I have often injured my fingers while doing all these activities. Those days are gone now.

Here is the recipe.

Ingredients: Green coriander 50 g, curry leaves 1 tablespoon, 6 green chillies, one onion, raw peanuts half cup, amchur one teaspoon.

Method: Roast peanuts on medium flame and keep stirring to avoid burning for about a minute or two till the outer covering starts cracking and coming off. Switch off the gas and allow peanuts to cool down. Then rub them between your fingers till the outer coating comes off from all the nuts. Blow air from your mouth into the plate of peanuts and you will see that the brown flakes will all fly off.

In a mixie, add all the ingredients (peanuts, green chillies, coriander leaves, curry leaves, onion, and salt (as per taste) with about a cup of water. Grind them all into a paste. Your green chutney is ready.

Enjoy!!!

Next time, I will use roasted chana in place of peanuts and see what the chutney tastes like.

I Love Pumpkin, Why Don’t You?

Isn’t it tragic that in spite of being such a wonderful vegetable, pumpkin is not as popular as it deserves to be? Most people add a lot of spices while cooking it to make it more palatable.

I recently cooked pumpkin in two different ways with just the basic ingredients (salt, turmeric, mustard seeds, mustard oil, and one whole red chilli) and I was pleasantly surprised to find it so delicious! Well, that proves that food can be tasty even without too many spices.

Here are the step-by-step pics.

1. Pumpkin with Karela (bitter gourd): Pumpkin neutralizes the bitterness of Karela and the net effect is absolutely heavenly.

First chop the Karela into thin slices and soak them in salted water for about 30 minutes. Then wash them thoroughly and squeeze excess water from them. Deep fry these karela pieces in small batches in hot, smoking mustard oil till they turn light brown. Keep them aside in a plate.

Next, keep only 2 tablespoonfuls of mustard oil in Karachi and pour out the remaining hot muatard oil in a utensil. Heat the Karachi again and add 2 teaspoons of mustard seeds and one whole red chilli. Once spluttering starts, add chopped pumpkin, turmeric, and salt as per taste.

Once the pumpkin becomes a bit soft, add the fried karela pieces and put a cover after lowering the gas flame. This will prevent burning.

Keep checking every 2 minutes till the vegetables are tender without becoming mushy.

Your pumpkin-karela dish is ready. Bon Appetit!

2. Grated Pumpkin

Here, the method is same as above, except that this time you use the grated pumpkin.

Sprouts Salad

Courtesy photo: Suroshri Chatterjee

My daughter works these days in the night shift. The food I cook daily doesn’t always suit her, as she needs to eat things that keep her active and fresh during her working hours.

Last week, she made a sprouts salad for herself and she left behind some for me too. I found it extremely delicious. See its photo on top.

I had it for myself again for breakfast on the following day. I did not feel bloated, like I generally do whenever I eat sprouts. By lunch time, I was hungrier than usual!

It is commonly believed these days that fruits and vegetables must never be eaten together, but this particular sprouts salad that I am going to tell you more about now has both of them. It is healthy, light, nutritious, easy to make; doesn’t take much time.

Ingredients: one Apple, one pear, one cucumber, one small onion (optional), a small cup each of boiled sweet corn and sprouts, juice of one lemon, salt and chaat/raita masala/or any masala as per your taste.

Method: Chop the apple, pear, cucumber, and onion. Add sweet corn, sprouts, lemon juice, salt and raita masala. Mix well. Your sprouts salad is now ready.

Simple, isn’t it?

Enjoy! Bon Appetit!

Alu-Gobhi simplified

Alu-Gobhi (potatoes and cauliflower) sabji is a very popular dish in North India. It has to be made with great care as Gobhi (cauliflower) tends to soften faster than alu (potatoes) and you run the risk of ending up with mashed cauliflower with potatoes standing out, which doesn’t taste good.

In an ideal Alu-Gobhi Sabji sabji, alu and cauliflower pieces are soft without being mushy and have a spicy, crispy, fried taste.

A lot of chefs first deep fry the alu and cauliflower pieces separately and then cook them together in a karahi with the required spices, curd, tomatoes, and some more oil. This takes far too much time and oil.

On 28 July 2019, I discovered an easier, simpler, and far healthier method of cooking Alu-Gobhi without compromising on that typical restaurant-like taste.

Here are the step-by-step pics. Do try out this recipe and write back. I look forward to reading your comments.

1. Start off by steaming chopped potatoes and cauliflower in a pressure cooker. Be careful while you do this as there is a risk of overboiling. Usually, one whistle or just when the whistle is about to begin is sufficient cooking time. My mini pressure cooker is of Prestige and in one whistle, it parboils without making the items too soft. Once done, place the veggies on a sieve and let the excess water drain out into a container below. You can use it in making other dishes such as dals or soups, etc.

2. Grind ginger and make a rough paste.

3. Heat some oil in a thick-bottomed karahi. Once it is hot, lower the gas flame and add turmeric, chilli powder, whole Cummin seeds, and whole corriander seeds powder.

4. Then add the veggies, ginger paste, and one red chilli. Stir a few times and allow the veggies to fry properly. Mix well and add salt and amchur as per your taste. Your Alu-Gobhi bhaji is ready. Enjoy.

5. You can add grated paneer too in the end. I had some paneer-onion bhurji in the fridge, so I added this to the Sabji when it was done.


Read my other food recipes here. https://wordpress.com/page/jasbirchatterjeephotoblog.wordpress.com/8762

Leftover Dal Pakoras

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It was from my Mom that I learnt to never, ever discard leftover cooked dal (pulses). She taught me to make paranthas with it. But my own family is not very fond of paranthas, so I recently experimented with making cooked dal pakoras. They tasted very good and disappeared in a jiffy! Here are the step-by-step pics. Do try this out and let me know how you find it.

  1. First assemble all the ingredients (leftover dal, besan, soaked Poha, some curry leaves, one green chilly, one onion)

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2. Mix besan, leftover dal, soaked poha. Add chopped onion and green chilly, and salt as per your taste. Mix well to make a batter. Add spices (red chilly powder, cumin powder, whole coriander powder, and amchur) followed by rice powder and sooji. Mix well.

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4. Deep fry spoonfuls of this batter in a karahi. Do this in batches.

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5. Once they turn brown all over, bring them out and place them on tissue paper to drain out excess oil. Do this for all batches of batter.

6. Pakoras are ready. Enjoy.

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Read my other food recipes here. https://wordpress.com/page/jasbirchatterjeephotoblog.wordpress.com/8762

Love Sandwich

My 23-year-old daughter Suroshri recently made us proud by being selected for a prestigious internship in a British Council teaching project.

She leaves home for work these days at 7 AM and I face the daily challenge of sending her off with a tiffin box containing food which, apart from being filled with motherly love, is healthy, tasty and doesn’t require too much time to prepare.

Today, on 21 June 2019, I surprised myself by creating a sandwich that fulfilled all of these parameters.

Here is the recipe.

Ingredients:

Bread slices, 4

Leftover yellow dal, 4 tablespoons

Grated paneer: 50g

Chopped items: one green chilli, some green coriander leaves, one small onion.

Spices: salt, amchur, jeera powder, dhania powder as per taste.

Method:

Mix paneer, all chopped items, and spices with a spoon.

Next, toast 2 bread slices on a tawa after smearing it with some Amul butter. Once they turn brown at the bottom, flip them and place some filling on the toasted part of one of the slices. Place the other slice on it. Toast the sandwich on both sides. Now sandwich is ready. Here are the step-by-step pics.

Do try this and let me know what you think.

A Winter Recipe

At the peak of winter, when it’s chilly, misty, and cloudy outside and the plants are bereft of green leaves, it’s best to head to the kitchen and make these unusual pakoras for yourself and your family. Have them with a cup of hot masala chai. It will drive away the blues and make you feel better.

Here are the step-by-step pics…

1. Grind some cauliflower ganthals (stalks) along with a bunch of garlic, some ginger, and a green chilly. Take out this paste in a vessel and add besan (black gram powder) to it.

Add salt, ajwain, hing, amchur, cumin powder, and coriander powder as per your taste.

Mix well.

Take out spoonfuls of this batter and deep fry in hot oil in a Karahi till they turn brown all over.

Place them in a plate once done. Enjoy with a dip of your choice and a hot cup of tea.

Happy eating!☺️

Sandwich Art

Here are the step-by-step pics.

Prepare Pomegranate Chutney: Blend a cup of pomegranate seeds with 2 green chillies, some gur, and amchur. Add some water if required. This is what you will get.

Cut sandwich into 4 pieces. Garnish with chopped carrots.