Vegetarian Seekh Kebabs


 

Kebab is a broad term covering a wide variety of grilled meat dishes. Although often cooked on a skewer, many types of kebab are not. Kebab dishes can consist of cut up or ground meat or seafood, sometimes with vegetables; cooked on a skewer over a fire, or like a hamburger on a grill, baked in a pan in an oven, or as a stew.

Today I tried a vegetarian version of these lip smacking seekh kebabs that can be prepared at home.

FullSizeRender-3

The vegetarian version is loaded with veggies, flavorful spices & cooked in not so authentic manner. I do not have a coal lighted barbecue/mini tandoor/sigree. 😦 I have it on my list of things to add and improve my kitchen 🙂

IMG_7649

      Ingredients

  • Potato -3
  • Carrot-2
  • Peas- 1/4 cup
  • Corn – 14 cup
  • Onion- 1
  • Green chilli- 4-5 (depends on taste)
  • Coriander – a little
  • Panut powder 3Tbsp
  • Mint -5-7 leaves
  • Ginger garlic paste – 1 ½ tsp
  • Crushed dry red chilli – 1 Tbsp
  • Bread Crumbs – 1 bread
  • Roasted Besan/gram four – 6-8 Tbsp
  • Garam masala – 1 tsp
  • Salt – to taste
  • Cumin Powder – 1½ tsp
  • Kashmiri red chili – 2 tsp
  • Lemon Juice – 1½ tsp
  • Butter/ olive oil
    
     Method:
  • Boil and mash the potatoes.
  • Boil carrot, peas, corn in a microwave and then let it cool for 10 minutes before grinding it in a mixer, pulse the veggies until very finely chopped – kind of minced.
  • Add – onion, green chili, coriander, mint leaves and process it to a very fine mixture. You can add ginger and garlic to this mixture if you wish to use fresh paste vs. bottled ginger garlic paste.
  • Transfer all the contents  (potatoes, veggies, onion -ginger- garlic- corianer paste) into a mixing bowl.
  • Add 3 tbsp nut powder (I used raosted peanut powder) , cumin powder, kashmiri red chili powder, garam masala, ginger garlic paste, lemon juice & salt to taste.
  • Using hands, mix all the ingredients together. Add the roasted besan, &  bread crumbs. Mix all ingredients making a dough kind of, if it is very sticky and has much moisture and not forming into dough, add more Roasted besan & Bread Crumbs.
  • After it starts turning into dough kind of mixture, let it rest for 10-15 minutes minimum.
  • Grabs small portion and start shaping into slight oblong shape. You may press the kebabs on the seekh/ skewers at this time or cook it and then put it on skewers. If you plan on putting the skewers now, dip your hands in water, and shape the seekh kebab in the skewer using your hands. Make sure the kebab mixture is nicely distributed over the seekh, thickness should be equal in all sides, otherwise it may fall while cooking.
  • Since I do not have  a coal lighted barbecue/mini tandoor/sigree, I decided to cook the kebabs over a chalni (sieve). I decided to cook 2 kebabs at a time in the chalni, so that its easy to turn them around. I did not use the skewers while cooking it. I inserted the skewers at the end before serving. Another tip: if you used skewers for cooking , please soak the skewers in water for 20 mins so that they don’t burn.FullSizeRender-2
  • Once you see the crisp reddish- black layer, take them out, spread some butter, sprinkle chaat masala and lemon juice and serve it hot.
           FullSizeRender-4
It is still possible to enjoy the soft veg seekh kebabs even without a tandoor at home. Hope you will give it a try!

SPINACH- PEAS CURRY


DSC_1335

Just bought fresh baby spinach from Costco over the weekend. I decided to make another spinach curry most popular in India. This curry is easy to cook, it’s totally vegan. This is another great recipe of people avoiding dairy products temporarily. Couple of tweaks using this same spinach curry- you may add potato/sweet potato/ corn/ paneer/tofu instead of peas. This curry can also be eaten without any toppings. The key ingredient for this recipe is spinach and peas. It is the easiest curry which can be prepared within 30 mins (15 min prep and 15 min cooking time).

DSC_1321

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup frozen peas or boiled fresh peas
  • 2 cup baby spinach, boiled, drained and cooled
  • 2 tbsp. cooking oil
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 inch piece of ginger
  • 1-2 cloves on garlic – optional
  • 1-2 green chillies
  • 1 medium sized tomato
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed chillies or chilli powder
  • 1 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. garam masala
  • 1 cup of water, approximately

Method:

  • Boil spinach leaves for 10 minutes in small amount of water.
  • Drain it and allow it to cool for some time.
  • If using fresh peas you will want to slightly boil it (5 -7 minutes in boiling water).
  • While the spinach is getting boiled, finely chop ½ onion and keep aside.
  • Roughly chop tomatoes green chilies, ginger and garlic.
  • Grind the cooled spinach along with the green chilies, tomato, onion, ginger and garlic to a fine paste and keep aside.
  • Heat oil in a pan.
  • Add the cumin seeds, wait for it to crackle
  • Add the finely chopped onions. Fry for 2-3 minutes, until lightly brown on medium flame
  • Add the spinach paste to the above. Keep it on low flame- to avoid spluttering of spinach all around.
  • Add turmeric powder and salt to taste.
  • Simmer it for 10 minutes.
  • Add frozen peas or boiled fresh peas.
  • Finally add garam masala & chili powder
  • Add 1 cup of water (adjust as needed)
  • Cook for 5-7mins. Turn off the flame.

Cooking Tips:

  • Do not cover the spinach curry if you want a vibrant green color. (Since I covered it while cooking the color changed to olive green)
  • To reduce the bitterness of the spinach you may add a spoonful of plain yogurt. Tomato also helps, but in turn changes the vibrant green color.
  • A trick my mom shared with me and I am sharing with you folks- to avoid spinach to splutter all around, cook it over low medium flame, leave the ladle in the pan. This will ensure no to minimal spluttering.

Serve it with hot hulks/chapatti/rice. try this dish folks and leave me your comments.

DSC_1319

AAM KI LAUNJI (RAW MANGO CURRY)


Aam/Kairi Ki launji is another of my favorites. Kairi is another word for unripe green mangoes in India.My mom always cooks these in summer. She uses raw baby mangoes (Kairi).  You can use frozen raw mangoes (cut) or else use fresh raw mango. I like to use the fresh ones, because, they are more flavorful during the hot summer months.
The best thing, it can be eaten as a main dish and also can be added as a side.

Ingredients

  • 1 large raw mango
  • 1 tbsp olive oil/ any oil of your own choice
  • A pinch of hing/asafetida
  • 1/2 tsp jeera/cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp methi/fenugreek seeds
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1/4 tea spoon turmeric powder –
  • 4 tbsp Sugar/honey (adjust if mangoes are not sweet)
  • Salt -according to the taste
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup Water

Method

  • Wash the mangoes. Peel and cut into 2 inch pieces.
  • Boil the mangoes for 8-10 mins, strain and keep aside.
  • Heat oil in a pan
  • Add cumin seeds, methi, and fennel seeds into it.
  • Once the methi seeds are turning light brown in color, add hing to it.
  • Add the boiled mangoes and mix them well.
  • Add the spices: turmeric powder, salt. Mix them well
  • Add sugar and water and let it cook for 8-10 mins on low medium flame.
  • Once the mangoes are tender. Turn off the flame.
  • Ready to be served with Rice or paratha and chapatti.


Hope you like it!

STUFFED CAPSICUM (BELL PEPPER) IN CASHEW NUT CURRY


DSC_1209

I was confused about how to prepare the bell pepper for dinner. I wanted to cook something simple using  bell pepper and potato (the most common way it is cooked in India). But instead I decided to make it using potato  and cheese stuffing.

Since I wanted to serve with roti (Indian flat bread), it needed a curry otherwise it would have been really dry. So far, whenever I have eaten stuffed bell peppers, they are served as one big bell pepper. It is usually hard to eat and messy if you are eating it out.

I decided to slice the bell pepper horizontally, so that they are easy to eat. Also, one large bell pepper can easily serve two individuals. You may choose to use different color and get small/medium size bell pepper for this variation.

The cashew nut curry is thick, creamy and rich. I like to cook it occasionally to change the taste buds from usual tomato/onion gravy.

Ingredients:

Stuffing

  • 1 green bell pepper, small
  • 1 red bell pepper, small
  • 2 small, potatoes, boiled, peeled and mashed
  • 1-2 green chilies, slit, de-seed and chopped
  • 2 tbsp parmesan cheese
  • ¼ teaspoon red chili
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder
  • Pinch of garam masala
  • Salt & pepper, to taste

Curry

  • 1 onion, medium, roughly chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, medium, roughly chopped
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 2-3 cardamom pods, lightly crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 10-15 cashew nuts (whole)
  • 1/4 tsp. ginger-garlic paste
  • ¼ tsp. garam masala
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 cup whipped yogurt (low-fat plain yogurt)
  • 3-4 teaspoons olive oil (any oil of your preference)
  • Coriander leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • Water

DSC_1208

Method:

Stuffing

  • Boil the potatoes in microwave/pressure cook them
  • Peel, mash and keep aside
  • Add the Parmesan cheese and chopped green chilies to the mashed potato
  • Add pepper, salt, garam masala, red chili powder and cumin powder to the mashed potato.
  • Mix everything together and keep aside.
  • Take bell peppers, remove the stalk and take out all the seeds with a knife. Cut the bell peppers horizontally into thick circles (1/2” in width)
  • Take each bell pepper circle and stuff it with the potato mixture.
  • Spray olive oil on a grill pan and grill the stuffed peppers for 5-7 minutes on each side till they are light brown in color. Set aside.

Curry

  • In a pan heat 2 teaspoon of oil on medium heat and add lightly crushed cardamom pods and bay leaf to it. Saute for a minute or two.
  • Add chopped garlic and cook till garlic is light brown in color.
  • Add roughly chopped onions and cook till translucent.
  • Add the tomatoes and cashews.
  • Cover it with a lid and let it cook for 6-8 minutes on medium heat till tomatoes are soft.
  • Switch off the gas and let it cool
  • Remove the bay leaf from the mixture and puree it to a fine paste.
  • In the same pan, heat 1.5 teaspoon of oil on medium heat. Once hot add the ginger-garlic paste and saute for 2 minutes, ensure the raw smell is gone.
  • Add the puree mixture and cook for 3 minutes
  • Add the dry spices – paprika powder, cumin powder, red chilli powder, garam masala and salt. Also add around 3/4th cup of water at this point.
  • Cover and cook the curry for 5-6 minutes on medium flame.
  • Open the pan and add the whipped yogurt. I like to add yogurt instead of heavy cream/ milk
  • Cook the curry for 2 minutes on medium flame.
  • Add the stuffed bell peppers to the curry, cook for 2-3 minutes and switch off the flame.
  • Garnish with some chopped coriander leaves and serve hot.

DSC_1202

I would love to hear back from you! Let me know when you try it 🙂

CHATPATE BAINGAN (EGG PLANT)


dsc_1255

Very recently I posted a recipe on “Achaari” Paneer. The flavors are still lingering on my tongue. I love the spicy, astringent and tart flavor of the pickles.The Achaari flavor comes from basic pickling spices; mustard, cumin, fennel seeds, nigella seeds, fenugreek seeds and red chilli which are prominently used in North Indian pickles. The combination of these flavors with paneer was absolutely phenomenal. I had an eggplant in my refrigerator and I decided to combine them together for dinner tonight.

I dislike eating eggplant and have never attempted to cook it before.  Although I have watched my mom cook an eggplant several times before. Since my husband loves eggplant, I decided to cook him a meal with his favorite veggie. What more can a guy ask for when he returns home to a home cooked meal made of his favorite veggie?!

The recipe includes  basic pickling spices; mustard, cumin, fennel seeds, nigella seeds, fenugreek seeds and red chilli which are prominently used in North Indian pickles.

dsc_1260

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium size Eggplant
  • 1 small Potato
  • 1 small Onion
  • 1 tsp Ginger- Garlic paste
  • ¼ tsp Sugar (Optional)
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • pinch of Hing/Asafoetida (I used rock/crystal)
  • 2 springs Curry Leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp Rai/Mustard Seeds
  • 1 tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
  • ½ tsp Saunf/Fennel Seeds
  • ½ tsp Methi/Fenugreek Seeds
  • ¼ tsp Kalonji/Nigella Seeds
  • 1½ tsp Dhania/Coriander Powder
  • ½ tsp Haldi/Turmeric Powder
  • 1 tsp Red Chilli Powder/Paprika
  • 1 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tsp Amchur/Dry Mango Powder

dsc_1257

Method:

  • Chop the eggplant into semicircular pieces. Ensure the width of the each piece remains nearly same, this helps in cook it evenly. Soak them in a bowl of cold water to prevent them from discolouring.
  • Chop potato lengthwise (the way you would want it for french fries). Soak it in another bowl with water.
  • Chop onion in 1″ size and soak it in same bowl as the potato.
  • Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds, fennel seeds, cumin seeds and nigella seeds.
  • When the mustard seeds crackle add fenugreek seeds.
  • Once the fenugreek seeds turn light brown in colour, add hing and curry leaves and give it a quick stir.
  • Add ginger-garlic paste and fry it till raw smell disappears.
  • Mix in turmeric, coriander powder, cumin powder and chilli powder and fry the spices for half a minute on low-medium flame.
  • Drain the water from the potato & onion and add to the pan. Mix them well.
  • Cover it using a lid. I like to pour little water on the lid- the steam aids in cooking the potatoes faster. Additionally nothing sticks to the pan or gets burnt. Cook it for 5-7 mins
  • Drain all the water from eggplants and add it to the pan. Mix them well.
  • Cover the pan with lid again. Let it cook for 3-4 minutes on medium flame.
  • Open the lid and stir in salt to taste. Cover and let it cook for another 5-7 minutes on medium flame, stirring after every 2 minute.
  • Next add garam masala, sugar and amchur powder and mix them well. Let it cook uncovered for few more minutes till the eggplants and potatoes are cooked through. They should be soft but not mushy.
  • Serve it hot with Indian flat breads (phulka/chappati)

dsc_1258

Enjoy the Chatpate Baingan! Look forward for your comments 🙂

TWISTED TIKKIS (PURPLE CABBAGE PATTIES)


dsc_1230

Finally the Purple cabbage tikkis are here!

I was grocery shopping and saw the purple cabbage. The color attracted me and I wanted to try something new with it. Aloo Tikkis are very popular north Indian snack. But these days we are all so conscious of our health, I thought why not use the purple cabbage as the main ingredient to make this tikki.

These tikkis are colorful, crunchy and healthy options for your next burger recipe.

dsc_1233

Ingredients:

  • Small potato, boiled and mashed– 2
  • purple cabbage, shredded – 2 cup
  • ½ red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • salt to taste
  • Small onion, finely chopped – 1
  • green chili, chopped -1-2 (depends on how spicy you want)
  • garam masala powder – ¼ tsp
  • red chili powder – 1 tsp
  • dried mango powder (amchoor) – 1 tsp
  • oil spray to cook

Method:

  • Take a mixing bowl. Add all the ingredients to it except oil, and mash well.
  • Divide the mixture into 8-10 equal sized balls. Gently flatten them.
  • Heat a flat pan. Spray some oil to it and let it cook, turning occasionally on either sides
  • Remove from the pan when there is brownish crust on either side.
  • Serve hot with your favorite ketchup or chutney. Enjoy!

dsc_1236

Try and let me know did it turn out !!!

ACHAARI PANEER


Achaari (sometimes also known as achaar or achar) means pickle. This is a dish that is made with all the spices one would normally use in an indian pickle. It is spicy & tangy. It can be eaten with either rice or roti.

dsc_12211

Hope you like the flavors! Do try it and leave your comments.

Ingredients: you will need-

  • 250 gm cubed paneer (I usually cut them in rectangular pieces)
  • 2tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds (saunf)
  • 1 tsp black mustard seeds (sai)
  • 1 tsp fenugreek seeds (methi daana)
  • 1/4 tsp nigella seeds (onion seeds – Kalonji)
  • 1 tsp garlic-ginger paste
  • 1.5 tsp zeera (cumin seeds)
  • 1 large red onion
  • 1/2 cup red and green bell pepper (chopped into 1″ square pieces)
  • 3-4 green chillies slit length wise, you may just add depending on your taste
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 200 ml whipped curd
  • 2 tsp dry mango powder
  • 1 tsp kashmiri mirch
  • 1 tsp sugar

Method:

  • Heat the oil
  • Add fennel, fenugreek, nigella and cumin seeds. Let it get brown.
  • After 15-20 seconds, add green chillies. Stir and fry.
  • Add the onions, Stir and fry. Let it be golden.
  • Add the peppers. Stir and fry.
  • Add turmeric powder, ginger- garlic paste. Fry for a minute.
  • Pour in the yoghurt, dry mango powder, chilli powder, sugar and salt.
  • Cook until oil separates.
  • Add paneer cubes. The curd will leave some water. You may also add about 1/4 cup water if you need more gravy. Simmer for 5-7 mins and serve hot.

Enjoy the Achaari paneer with hot phulkas. Yumm!

dsc_12261

BURNT CHILLI GARLIC NOODLES


dsc_1214

The following recipe is adapted from eCurry. I love eating Indo-Chinese cuisine. The chilli garlic noodles are my favorite. Anytime, we eat Indo-Chinese outside, I would order these noodles. I have made spicy garlic noodles several times before, but I wanted to try this recipe solely for the medley of flavors from garlic and burnt chillies. The strong aroma blends in perfectly with the Hakka noodles.

If you like eating food that is hot, has a distinct charred taste to it, you will love these noodles. Please try it and leave me your feedback.

Ingredients:

  • 2 packets of Ching’s noodles (5.3 oz)
  • 1.5 tablespoon oil + a teaspoon oil to cook the noodles
  • 2 tsp red crushed chili Flakes or use 3-4 dried whole red chili peppers if you want it less spicy
  • 3 large garlic cloves (about 3/4 tablespoon chopped or to taste)
  • 3/4 cup thinly sliced/julienned vegetables ( I used onion, carrots, green bell pepper and scallions) (white parts)
  • 2-3 tablespoon of scallions, thinly chopped (green parts only)
  • salt to taste
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce (dark soy sauce)

Method:

  1. Boil the Ching’s noodles as per instruction on the label. Set it aside
  2. Heat 1.5 tablespoon of oil. Add the crushed chili pepper flakes, the whole dried red chilli and let them cook, sizzle and brown (I have added the red chilli flakes and the dried whole chillies). They will turn dark brown after a while.
  3. Add the chopped garlic. Allow them to turn golden. Increase the heat and add the vegetables and salt. Quickly stir fry moving them around in the wok/pan, for a couple of minutes only.
  4. Add the drained noodles, and toss everything together for the oil and the vegetables to combine well. Add vinegar and soy sauce to the noodles. Toss again so for the vinegar and soy sauce combines with the noodles. Switch off the heat and adjust salt.
  5. Garnish with chopped green onions. Serve warm.

dsc_1209