Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Happy Diwali 2014 with Spicy peanuts

Happy Diwali everyone! Hope you have a fun and safe and happy day! Enjoy the mithai and light those diyas and enjoy the crackers. And when done spend time chatting with your family and friends.

Growing up I remember mom making tins (huge tins) of diwali mithai and non mithai for weeks. Then the day of diwali huge boxes would be distributed to neighbors. I would wait for the evening for all my cousins to come for the grand fire cracker celebration. Though I was terrified of the noise, I just loved having everyone around, gossiping, chatting laughing and having a good time!

Now far away from home and cousins and noise, I try keeping traditions. I make mithai and non mithai, but it is by the handful. I share some of those with friends and spend evening eating good food and lighting diyas and sparklers! My kids know and look forward to Diwali every year now!

This year I made a few sweets and non sweets. Sweets : Besan Laddoo and Karanja and coconut burfi. Non-sweet I made nimki and spicy peanuts. Here is my recipe for the spicy peanuts or ground nuts!

1 cup peanuts/groundnuts
1/2 cup besan or chickpea flour
1 teaspoon chili powder (adjust to taste)
Salt and Black Salt to taste
1/2 a lemon
1/2 teaspoon jeera powder
Oil for frying

How To
Mix all the ingredients other than oil well. Then sprinkle water to coat the peanuts with the besan nicely. Leave aside for 5 min to marinate.
Heat oil and fry in batches.
Keep aside for puja or else enjoy fresh from the stove.
Sprinkle some black salt again if you want !

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy New Year 2014

The New Year brings new hopes and new aspirations and new resolutions. Here is wishing everyone a very Happy New Year! These New Year happy balls are inspired by the ball drop off from Times Square.
And also a happy birthday to my blog - 5th birthday - a big milestone for me and the blog!

Fresh paneer - 2 cup
2 grated carrots
handful of green beans - cut into tiny pieces
1/2 an onion - cut into tiny pieces
handful of coriander leaves cut into small pieces
2-3 table spoon of flour or maida
2-3 tablespoon of panko bread crumbs
Salt to taste
1/2 tea spoon of pepper
Oil for deep frying
How To

Mix the all the ingredients above other than the oil and make balls. Roll the balls in extra panko bread crumbs for crunchy texture (I don't have any in the picture), but have used them earlier and the balls taste much better! Leave aside for a few minutes.
Fry them ad serve with the sauce of your choice!

And chomp on them while watching the ball drop or enjoying your New Year's party!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Happy Odiya Nua Barsa on Pana Sankranti

Happy Odiya New Year!

Today seemed like a perfect start to a new year with a visit to a temple in the afternoon (Lord Jagannath resides in this temple at Stratford, CT) and then followed by yummy Pana. In Odissa pana sankranti or odiya nua barsa is a very holy day and we celebrate it with a lot of pujas and devotion followed by pana.

Bela pana is most common, but here is a yummy pana made by my mom. Here is the links to my other Pana post and the chatua post very important for this day.

Ingredients1/2 cup freshly made paneer
1/2 cup apple peeled and cut into tiny pieces
1/4 cup green mango peeled and cut into tiny pieces
1/4 cup banana peeled and cut into tiny pieces
1/4 cup orange peel and cut into small pieces
1 heaped tablespoon of jaggery
1 cup of milk
2 cardamom ground
1/8 th inch of ginger grated
3-4 black pepper freshly ground
handful of cashews ground separately
fistful of fresh grated coconut (optional)

How to

Put all the fruits, yogurt, paneer, cardamom, ginger and black pepper and brown sugar mix well with your hand or spoon. Add about a cup of water to it and mix well. Serve fresh with ground cashew and fresh shredded coconut sprinkled on top...

If you can skip the brown sugar, this would be an amazing protein drink loaded with vitamins! Enjoy!

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Cabbage curry with kala chana

I am not a big fan of cabbage in US. It is sweet and bland and unless it is made specially I don't eat it... This version of cabbage curry I saw in our local desi restaurant. They had added some kala chana and some fresh coconut to the cabbage curry and it tasted amazing. Here is my simpler version of the same curry!
So this is a simple cabbage curry with a slight twist, add these black pearls - kala chana and presto you have a newer tasting cabbage curry! Try it and let me know how you like it!

Priya as recommeded by you, sending this off to Healthy Me and Healthy Us event  hosted by Priya of Mharo Rajastan's recipes. Priya's blog comes from Rajasthan a place dear to my heart, I have spent my most important student years there and love the people and their hospitality and when she hosts healthy food event another thing very near and dear to me, I couldn't resist editing my post!

Nutrition benefits of cabbage and black peas
1. Steamed cabbage is supposed to be a good source of cancer prevention food and also cholesterol reduction food. Source here .
2. Cabbage is good source of Vitamin K, vitamin C, folate and fiber and contains very less calories for about  1 cup of raw cabbage .
3. Legumes are high is proteins and are wonderful as a plant based protein.

2 cups of thinly sliced cabbage
1/2 cup of pre soaked and boiled (with salt) black chick peas or kala chana
1 tea spoon of ginger garlic paste
2 green chillies
2 plum tomatoes - diced
1 tea spoon of Turmeric
1 tea spoon of red chili powder
1 tea spoon of Jeera/Cumin powder
1/2 tea spoon of garam masala
Salt to taste
1 table spoon of Oil

How To
Heat oil in a pan
Add green chillies and ginger garlic paste and mix well.
Add the cabbage and the turmeric and chili powder and mix well and cook on low heat for about 10-15 min. Stir every 4-5 min.
Once the cabbage reduces in volume, add the tomatoes, salt and the cumin powder and garam masala and the boiled kala chana.
Cook for a few more minutes until cabbage and tomatoes are cooked through.
Sprinkle coriander leaves and enjoy with rotis!


Saturday, February 9, 2013

Simple feast - khichidi with all its accompaniments

I know I know, who calls Khichidi a feast? But it is an ultimate comfort food in our household and it is one which everyone eats happily! And once you add all the accompaniments it sure is a small feast. So though everyone eats khichidi at my place, every ones needs their own fix. My daughter likes it with pickles (achaar), my son with extra lemon and butter and papad and my hubby with some baigani (thinly sliced eggplant deep fried with besan) and mixed vegetable pakoras, while I like mine with Chalaah (yogurt and water mixture)...
After Nemo dumped, more than 2 feet of snow on us the kids and hubby had a grand time cleaning up snow and playing and I had fun in the kitchen putting together a khichidi ensemble. So here is our simple treat! Tell me what you have for your cold snowing days ?
I don't know how you like your khichidi, my hubby and kids it a little watery or pasty while mine is a little drier.


Rice - 1 cup
Mung Daal roasted on slow fire - 1 cup
1/2 inch if grated ginger
2-3 bay leaves
2-3 cloves
1 small cinnamon stick
1-2 red chilies
1 tea spoon of cumin seeds
Red chili powder (optional)
1 teaspoon of oil (of course butter would be better - but not needed at all)
Salt to taste

How To

Take the cup of Mung daal and dry roast in a small pan for 6-8 minutes. You will see the daal turn pink from yellow. Take it off the fire, clean and soak in water for 1/2 hour. Soak the rice also for 1/2 hour after cleaning it with water.
Take a pressure cooker, add the oil.
Once it is hot, add bay leaves, cloves, cinnamon stick, cumin seeds.
Add the daal and rice and mix well, add the chili powder, red chillies, salt and grated ginger.
For a watery khichidi, add 6 cups of water, for a drier one add about 3 cups of water.
Close the pressure cooker and let there be 1 whistle.
Remove from fire and let the cooker cool down (takes about 15 min).
Once the pressure releases, eat it hot with the accompaniments of your choice...

The khichidi is very forgiving, missing a spice no worries - skip it... Don't have moong daal, use some other daal... Don't like it dry, add water ! So make it the way you like and enjoy!

And here is the beautiful snow in our backyard!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Pumpkin Cake - celebrating my blog's 4th birthday

Happy New Year - 2013!

I can't believe it that I have been blogging for 4 years now! I know I have not been a regular, but it has been an awesome journey. I don't know if anyone uses this blog or not, but I am all the time refering back to it. In these days of smart phones, this blog is that recipe book that I can always access, instead of spending hours looking for my recipe book. And since the recipes are to my taste, I don't have to estimate anything.

Here is a super duper easy pumpkin cake recipe without eggs... My sister E sent me the banana cake recipe and I adapted it to my taste to make this pumpkin cake. The cake is super moist and add some chocolate chips and eat a rich and decadent cake.

3 Cups of all self rising flour
1 Cup of butter (Melted , Un-Salted)
2 Cups of brown sugar
1 tin of pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie)
Pinch of Salt
1 tea spoon of ground cinanmon
1 cup of milk
2 cups of semi sweet chocolate chips
How To
Pre-heat the Oven to 350 F ( 175 Degrees C)
Mix together butter  and sugar until they are well blended. Use your muscles, no blender, mixer needed. Add the pumpkin puree and mix well again.
In another bowl ,mix the flour and salt and spices.
Now slowly mix the dry ingredients above into the liquid mixture.
Add milk as the mixture gets thick. I used a little more than 1 cup of milk. 
Add the chocolate chips into the batter.
Pour the mixture into the greased loaf Pan.
Bake for about 40 mins
Check intermittently by pricking a tooth-pick to see nothing gets stuck on it.
Cool on rack.

Dig in once it cooks... Its gooey and yummy and chocolatey...
If you want you can add nuts to the cake too..

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Sprouted Moong Pulao - A new beginning

When life gives you lemons, go make lemonade! When I was given this box of beautiful looking sprouted moong from my friend T, I had to make something wonderful out of it... Did I tell you that I don't eat sprouted moongs already ? So I made this flavorful pulao and trust me anyone (even me who doesn't like sprouted moong) will fall in love with this dish...

While we are talking of life and lemons, it has been a crazy few months. I will be changing jobs after being at the same place for eons. Today was my last day at my old place and I start at my new place tomorrow. So here is to a new beginning for me and anyone who is reading this!

So here is a simple flavorful and healthy pulao everyone - Enjoy!


2 cups of cooked Rice
1 and 1/2 cup of sprouted moong
2-3 Bay leaves
couple of cloves
2 small sticks of cinnamon
1 tea spoon of red chili powder (if you want to make it a little spicy)
1 tablespoon of ghee
1 tea spoon of Jeera or Cumin Seeds
1 tea spoon of lemon juice
Salt to taste (optional)

How To

Cook Rice with a little bit of salt (Salt is optional). Make sure the rice is not over done.
Heat a pan. Add ghee and bay leaves and and the cumin seeds and the cloves and cinnamon sticks.
Once the seeds splutter, add the sprouted moong and cook for about 5-7 min until the moong softens a little bit.
Add the red chili powder (if you want) and Salt and mix the rice.
Add the lemon juice to the rice and moong pulao and serve fresh.

Actually you can enjoy it a couple of days later too, just warm it up and squeeze some fresh lemon juice!