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Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Ragda Patties (Potato Tikki & Dried Yellow Peas Curry)


          Ragda Patties is the most popular street food snack of Mumbai. It can be termed as an Indian fast food which is found in every street corner food stalls and in restaurants. This chaat item is relished by young and old alike with much enthusiasm. It is very wholesome, filling and can be termed as a one-pot meal.

          In fact it can be had anytime of the day. I prefer having it for dinner sometimes. Ragda means dried yellow peas cooked in a gravy and patties are potato cutlets or tikkis. They are served along with some chopped onion, tomato, sev, coriander leaves, green chutney and sweet chutney. Please check for a step by step method with pictures to prepare it.  









Ragda - 
  • 1 cup dry Yellow / White Peas, soaked overnight
  • pinch of baking soda
  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp. ginger-garlic paste (opt)
  • 1 tomato, pureed
  • 1 tsp. tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. red chili powder
  • 1 tsp. roasted coriander-cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp. garam masala powder
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp. coriander leaves, chopped

Pattice - 
  • 3-4 potatoes, boiled & mashed
  • 2 bread slices
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp. roasted coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp. roasted cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp. red chili flakes
  • 1/2 tsp. garam masala powder
  • 1 tbsp. coriander leaves
  • 1 tsp. ginger, grated
  • 3 green chilies, chopped
  • oil to shallow fry
To Serve -

  • green chutney 
  • Instant sweet chutney 
  • 1 tsp. lime juice (opt)
  • 2-3 tbsp. sev
  • 2 tbsp. onion, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. tomato, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp. roasted cumin powder (opt)
  • 1/4 tsp. red chili powder (opt)
  • 1 tsp. coriander leaves, chopped







          Ragda - Boil the soaked peas in 2 1/2 cups water, turmeric powder and a pinch of baking soda for 2-3 whistles.

          Heat oil in a pan and saute the onion till light brown. Add the ginger-garlic paste and all the dry spices (except salt) mixed with little water. Fry on low flame till oil separates.

         Add the tomato puree and tomato paste. Continue to fry till dry. Add the boiled peas, salt and 3/4 cup water if required. 

           Cover and simmer till the gravy thickens. Add the coriander leaves and mix well. Keep aside.








          Patties - Soak the bread slices in water for a few seconds and squeeze out the water. In a bowl, add the bread, potatoes and all the ingredients (except oil to shallow fry).

          Knead well and divide into equal portions. Give it a patty shape and refrigerate for 25-30 minutes.

          Heat 1 tbsp. oil on a griddle / tawa and fry the patties few at a time till golden on both sides. Drain on a kitchen towel.

         Now to assemble - on a serving plate, place 2 patties and laddle some ragda over it, followed by the green chutney, sweet chutney, onion, tomatoes, lime juice, sev, cumin powder, red chili powder and coriander leaves.


Green Chutney - 

  • 1 cup coriander leaves, chopped
  • 1/2 cup mint leaves
  • 1-2 green chilies
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2" ginger
  • 1 tsp. lime juice 
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp. feta cheese
          
           Grind all the above mentioned ingredients with very little water into a paste. Your green chutney is ready.



Instant sweet chutney - 

  • 3 tbsp. ketchup
  • 1/2 tsp. tamarind paste
  • 1/2 tsp. red chili powder
  • 1 tsp. sugar

           Mix together all the above mentioned ingredients along with 1/4 cup water. Your instant sweet chutney is ready.





                             Soak the dry yellow / white peas overnight. Pressure cook in 2 1/2 
                             cups water for 2-3 whistles along with turmeric powder & baking 
                             soda.



                             Heat oil in a pan and saute the onion till light brown.




                             Add the ginger-garlic paste and all the dry spices (except salt) mixed 
                             with little water to form a paste. Saute till oil separates.




                              Add the tomato puree and tomato paste. Saute till dry.




                             Add the boiled peas, salt and 3/4 cup water.



                              Simmer on low flame till the gravy slightly reduces. Add coriuander
                              leaves and mix well.




                              Add the mashed potatoes and all the mentioned ingredients
                              and knead into a dough.




                              Divide into equal portions and give a patty shape.




                              Shallow fry on a tawa / griddle till golden on both sides.




                            Serve the ragda and patties, garnished with chopped onion, tomatoes, 
                            coriander leaves, sev, green chutney, sweet chutney







Monday, 29 June 2015

Radhuni Diye Potol Er Torkari (Parwal / Pointed Gourd Curry)


          This is my version of a traditional Bengali dish of Potol (Pointed Gourd / Parwals) cooked in a thick gravy. The main ingredient is Radhuni (celery seeds) which is a spice, resembling ajwain or carom seeds. 

          It is generally used as a tempering on its own or included in the panch phoron mix that is very common in a Bengali cuisine. But in this recipe, I made a paste of radhuni along with dry red chilies and garlic. You can relish the end product as a side dish preferably with any Indian bread.






  • 8-10 parwals, cut into roundels
  • 3-4 tbsp. mustard oil
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3-4 garlic cloves
  • 1 tbsp. radhuni (celery seeds)
  • 3-4 dry red chilies
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • salt to taste
  • coriander leaves to garnish






          Soak the radhuni and red chilies in water or 30 minutes. Grind to paste along with the garlic. Keep aside. 

          Heat 2 tbsp. oil in a pan and saute the parwals till light brown. Drain and keep aside. Heat the remaining oil and temper with cumin seeds.

          After it stops spluttering, add the onion and fry till light brown. Add the ground paste and turmeric powder. Saute till oil separates.

          Add the fried parwals, salt and 1 1/2 - 2 cups water. Cover and simmer on med. flame till the gravy reduces and the parwals are cooked. Serve, garnished with coriander leaves.




                             These are radhuni (celery seeds) which are to be soaked with dry
                             red chilies for 30 minutes and ground to a paste along with garlic.



                              Saute the parwals till light brown. Keep aside.
   


                             Heat oil and temper with cumin seeds. Fry the onion till light brown.
                             Add the ground paste and turmeric powder. Fry till oil separates.



                               Add the fried parwals and salt. Mix well.



                             Add water and simmer till gravy thickens and parwals turn soft.

   

                              Serve as a side dish, garnished with coriander leaves.





  

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Spicy & Tangy Arbi Fry - Andhra Style


          This is another style of Arbi cooked dry and where I have added some local Andhra spice powder called Kura Karam Podi for a spicy stir fry dish. In the absence of the latter, you can substituted with sambar powder. Have this delicacy as a side dish with either curd-rice, sambar-rice or with any Indian flat bread.






  • 12-15 arbi (colocassia)
  • 3-4 tbsp. oil
  • 1/2 tsp. mustard seeds
  • 1-2 sprig curry leaves
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. roasted coriander-cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp. kura karam podi / sambar podi
  • juice of half lime





         Pressure cook the arbi in sufficient water for one whistle. When cool, drain and peel the skin off. Flatten them in between your palms and keep aside. 

         Heat 2 tbsp. oil in a non -stick pan and fry the arbi till golden on both sides. Remove on a plate. Sprinkle salt, coriander-cumin powder, turmeric powder and kura karam podi over the arbi and mix well so that it is well coated with all the spices.

           Heat remaining oil and temper with mustard seeds. Allow it to crackle. Add the curry leaves and the arbi. Saute on a low flame for 1-2 minutes. Switch off the flame and sprinkle the lime juice. Serve as a side dish with either rice or any Indian flat bread.









       


Avocado & Cabbage Soup

     
          This is an amazing one-pot meal with the goodness of avocado and cabbage. Both are a power house of essential nutrients and makes a good combination for a delicious and an interesting soup. Cabbage is low in calories and helps in weight loss.

          The addition of rosemary gives a refreshing flavour. This soup can be had as it is or in a pureed form, along with bread sticks or croutons. It is a wholesome and a healthy meal in itself and helps satiate your hunger for a long time.

          For a variation, this soup can be had along with some grilled lean meat or fish for a satisfying and a nutritious meal anytime of the day.






  • 1 avocado, chopped
  • 1 cup cabbage, sliced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1" ginger, chopped
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper powder or to taste
  • 3 sprigs rosemary
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1" cinnamon
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 1/2 cups stock / water






          Heat oil in a pan and saute the cinnamon and bay leaves for a few seconds. Add the onion, ginger and garlic and fry till light brown. 

          Now add the avocado, cabbage, salt,  pepper and 2 sprigs of rosemary. Saute for a minute or two. Add 2 1/2 cups stock or water and pressure cook for 2-3 whistles. 

          When cool, discard the bay leaves and cinnamon and blend it. Heat through and  garnish with the remaining rosemary and pepper powder. Serve with bread sticks or croutons.











Beguni (Batter Fried Eggplant - Bengali Style)


          These batter fried Beguni or Eggplant Fry are very commonly prepared in most of the Bengali homes and is also a very popular street food in Kolkata. They go very well as a side dish with khichdi, pulao or dal-rice. 

          They can also be relished as a tea-time snack or as appetizers with tomato sauce, mayo or any chutney. The options are plenty. So here is my version of this yummy fritters that tastes simply divine on any rainy day in particular with your loved ones.

          











  • 3-4 long & broad eggplants, sliced to 1/2 " thickness
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 3/4 cup besan (gram flour)
  • 1/2 tsp. kalonji (nigella seeds)
  • 1 tsp. ginger, grated
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1-2 green chilies, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp. onion, finely chopped (opt)
  • oil to deep fry











          Marinate the eggplants with salt and half the turmeric powder for 10 minutes. Make a batter of pouring consistency with the besan and all the other ingredients (except oil) with required quantity of water.

          Heat oil in a pan. Dip the eggplants in the batter few at a time and deep fry till golden in colour. Drain on a kitchen towel and serve hot along with khichuri (khichdi), tomato sauce or chutney.
























Saturday, 27 June 2015

Bengali Bhuna Khichuri / Khichdi (Rice-Lentil Porridge)


          A simple and a hearty comfort food that tastes so delicious any time and every time I prepare. It is a wholesome and a balanced meal in itself with the rice, lentils and the veggies. Just a tsp. of ghee brings out the actual essence of this yummy dish. Nothing can beat having this humble khichuri along with some begun bhaja (fried eggplants) or aloo bhaja (potato fry).

          Bengalis usually offer the vegetarian version of this khichuri (please note - there is no onion or garlic) to Goddess Durga during the Dashera / Durga Puja festival. Khichuri in general is usually had during rainy season. There is a certain bond between khichuri and the monsoon. No sooner it starts raining, the only one thing that comes to our mind is "KHICHURI".

          Today I bring to you my version of Khichuri, which is not runny or soft as is usually prepared. It is a bit on the dry side called (Jhor jhore in the Bengali lingo) just like pilaf. I prepared some begun bhaja too to go with it. Please check below a step by step method with pictures to prepare it.











  • 1/2 cup basmati rice
  • 1/2 cup moong dal (split green gram)
  • 1 cup cauliflower florets
  • 10-12 french beans, cut into 1" piece
  • 1 carrot, cut into 1" piece
  • 1 potato, chopped
  • 3 tbsp. mustard oil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 dry red chilies
  • 1" cinnamon
  • 2 green cardamoms
  • 4-5 cloves
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 2 green chilies, slit
  • 1" ginger, julienne
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp. roasted coriander-cumin powder
  • 1 tsp. ghee
  • coriander leaves, green chilies and lime wedges to garnish
  • begun bhaja / aloo bhaja (eggplant fry / potato fry) to serve






          Dry roast the moong dal till light brown. Soak the rice and dal for 30 minutes. Heat 2 tbsp. oil and saute the potatoes and cauliflower separately till light brown. Keep aside.

          Heat the remaining oil and fry the cumin seeds, bay leaves, ginger, dry red chilies, green chilies, cinnamon, cardamoms and cloves. Saute for a few seconds till the crackling stops.

          Add the soaked and drained rice and moong dal. Saute for 2 minutes. Add 2 cups water, salt, coriander-cumin pwder, turmeric powder and the fried veggies, carrots and beans (Preserving few to garnish).

          Pressure cook for 2 whistles. Drizzle ghee and garnish with coriander leaves. Serve hot with begun bhaja (fried eggplants), lime wedges and green chilies.

          
   

                               Fry the potatoes and cauliflower slightly and keep aside.




                              Temper the oil with bay leaves, dry red chilies, ginger julienne, 
                              green chilies, cumin seeds, cinnamon, cardamoms and cloves.



                                
                               Add the soaked rice and dal. Saute for 2 minutes.




                              Add 2 cups water, salt, coriander-cumin powder, turmeric powder
                              and the veggies.




                              Pressure cook for 2 whistles.




                              Serve with a drizzle of ghee, coriander leaves, fried veggies, begun 
                              bhaja (fried eggplants), lime wedges and green chilies.
                           










Yummy Keema Ghugni (Dried Peas Curry with Mutton Mince - Bengali Style)


          Ghugni or Dried Yellow Peas Curry is a very common weekend breakfast menu in most of the Bengali homes and a great favourite too. They are relished with hot luchi (poori), parathas or chapattis. Another best option among all is to carry this delicious side dish on long journeys or picnics along with pooris. They are carefully packed in sealed containers along with some chopped onion, green chilies and lime wedges to be devoured later. 

          Today I made a non-veg. version of it by adding some mutton mince which I relished with triangular shallow fried parathas for breakfast. Even lean meat like chicken mince can be substituted. This recipe can also be termed as Mangsho Ghugni where it is cooked with small mutton cubes instead of keema. To conclude, this is an awesome side dish which has to be enjoyed to believe. Please check below a step by step method with pictures to prepare it.











  • 1 cup dried yellow peas, soaked overnight
  • 200 gms. mutton mince, washed and drained
  • 1 potato, cubed
  • 2 dry red chilies
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds + 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 2-3 tbsp. mustard oil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1" cinnamon stick
  • 2 green cardamoms
  • 4-5 cloves
  • 1-2 onions, chopped
  • 1 tsp. ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 tsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp. roasted coriander-cumin powder
  • 1 tsp. garam masala powder
  • 1 tsp. red chili powder
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tsp. ghee (clarified butter)
  • 1 tbsp. coriander leaves, chopped
  • lime wedges, chopped onion and green chilies to serve 









          Dry roast the dry red chilies and 1 tsp. cumin seeds for a few seconds. Cool and grind to a powder. Keep aside. Boil the peas in 2 cups water for 3-4 whistles.

          Heat oil in a pan and fry the potatoes till light brown. Drain and keep aside. Temper the same oil with bay leaves, cinnamon, cardamoms, cloves and 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds. Allow it to crackle.

          Add the onion and fry till light brown. Now add the ginger-garlic paste, tomato paste and all the dry spices (except salt), mixed with some water. Saute till oil separates.

          Add the mutton mince and fry on a low flame till dry. Add the boiled peas, salt and the fried potatoes. Add more water if required. 

          Simmer for 5-7 minutes. When done, add ghee, mix well and garnish with coriander leaves and a sprinkle of the roasted spice powder.  Serve along with some lime wedges and green chilies.





                               Dry roast the cumin seeds and dry red chilies.




                             When cool, grind them to a fine powder. Keep aside.




                            Heat oil in a pan and saute the potatoes till light brown. Keep aside.




                             In a bowl, make a paste of the ginger-garlic paste, tomato paste 
                             and all the dry spices (except salt). Keep aside.




                              Temper the oil with cumin seeds, bay leaves, cinnamon, cardamoms 
                               and cloves.




                              Add the onion and saute till light brown.




                             Add the masala paste and saute on low flame till oil separates.




                             Add the keema and fry on low flame till dry.



                    Add the boiled peas, salt and some extra water if required. Simmer on low
                    flame till the gravy thickens a bit. 




                      Garnish with coriander leaves & a sprinkle of the roasted spice powder.




                               Serve with some chopped onion, green chilies and lime wedges. 








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