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Greens marinated Chicken-Curry with a Goan twist to it…

“Its been a while..” hmmmm… while I think what to write next.. & I kept staring at “Its been a while”… it reminded me of the number by the band – Staind..! nothing to do with the mood of the song.. it’s just the name of the song!

Sadly…I have no pictures for this post.. but let me tell you.. Take my word for it.. give this recipe a shot over this weekend.. & I’m sure it will make your tummy feel good…real good..!! :D Now moving on to why there are no pics for this post… its a no brainer.. it is simple.. “It is HOT!!!” rather boiling here in Bangalore.. n when I’m done with cooking, all I want to do is head for a quick shower..! The evening showers of rain do make the days hotter..! I will get down to clicking pictures as soon as I get a chance to cook this again..!

After my fortnight long vacation in Mumbai.. the Bombay sandwiches, vada pav, sheekh kebab’s, the chicken rolls, the fish curry’s Pav bhaji etc. all that food hangs on back to me on my body like memories from the trip!..A bad simile huh??? Yup I’m the fattest ever..! Now that i’m back… my lunch is usually a large bowl of salads with some skinny dressing. A bowl of sprouts for a snack… a cup of green tea & cereals for breakfast… no more paratha’s or dosa’s for me till I shed some weight!.. Only boiled meat/fish… Dieting alone doesn’t help.. does it??? So, I have started exercising as well.. Hope to get back into shape soon.. Poor K also eats almost what I eat.. :( I knew K was craving for some good chicken curry, he was not going to tell me that since he was helping me keep up with my diet.. I thought I’d make him something that has greens..since he makes quite a fuss to eat spinach most times, I schemingly disguised & marinated the meat with a paste made of greens. When you see the curry you wouldn’t know it has greens.. A good way to make your family eat some greens I must say :D

My head was going to burst thinking of a name to call this curry, this is something that just made its way into my mind.. The ingredients just blended so well that I knew I had to post it with the stupidest name that I come up with.. Since I have used vinegar in this curry and vinegar is abundant in the Goan cuisine.. I decided to call this the “Greens marinated Chicken curry with a Goan twist”… :D

Ingredients: (Serves 3-4)            Preparation Time: 30 mins (Marination time not included)
Chicken – 500 gms, curry cut, skinless, washed & drained; You can use 400 gms of boneless chicken cut into chunks/strips.

For the Chicken Marinade:
Palak/Spinach – a small bunch, washed & drained
Garlic – 5-6 plump cloves, peeled & roughly chopped
Coriander leaves – 5-6 sprigs, washed & drained
Mint leaves – 10 – 12 medium-sized leaves
Cashews – 4-5 whole, soaked in about 50ml water
Freshly crushed black peppercorns – 1/4 tsp
Vinegar – 1 tsp
Salt to taste

For the curry:
Mace – 1/4 of a whole flower
Cloves – 4 whole
Cinnamon – 1/2 inch piece
Bay leaf – 1 small leaf roughly torn
Green Cardamom – 4 small, roughly crushed
Onion – 2 medium-sized, finely chopped
Tomatoes – 2, medium-sized, finely chopped
Ginger – 1 inch piece, finely minced
Sugar – 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder – a pinch
Coriander powder – 1.5 tsp
Cumin powder – 3/4 tsp
Red Chilli powder – 1/2 – 3/4 tsp
Freshly crushed black peppercorns – 1/4 tsp
Vinegar – 1 – 1.5 tsp
Cooking oil – 1 tbsp
Ghee/Clarified butter – 1.tbsp
Salt to taste

Make a fine paste using all the ingredients mentioned for the marinade. Liberally coat the washed chicken pieces with the freshly made marinade of greens. Let the chicken marinate for at least 40 mins covered in the refrigerator.

When the chicken has marinated, chop & prep all the rest of the ingredients. Heat oil & clarified butter together in a kadai/deep bottom fry pan. When hot add the dry spices – mace, cloves, cinnamon, bay leaf, green cardamom. Maintain heat at medium. Let the spices let out their flavour into the oil for a minute or two. Add the chopped onions & throw in a pinch of salt to help fry the onions quicker. Fry till the onions turns translucent. Add the ginger in & fry for a couple of minutes. Now add all the spice powders – turmeric, coriander , cumin, red chilli powder. Mix well & let them fry for a couple of minutes. Next add the chopped tomatoes & toss them around till they begin to loosen up. By now the raw flavours of the spice powders should begin to fade away. Add the vinegar, mix. Add the sugar, I love to add some sugar in some curry’s because it just takes the flavours to another level.Throw in the marinated chicken pieces along with any left over marinade. Mix well. Add a cup of water, salt to taste, mix well. When the water begins to bubble add the crushed black peppercorns, mix well & simmer. Let the chicken cook & absorb all the flavours.

Note: You don’t need to add water if you want to make this a dry dish.

Check on the dish once in every 5 minutes. Add more water if required. Once the chicken is tender, turn off the heat.

Garnishing: (Optional)
Garnish with chopped coriander if you wish to.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot with bread, steamed rice, chapati’s, roti’s idli’s; basically anything that you can gobble a good chicken curry with. :D

I did indulge in a bit of the curry with a slice of bread..! Couldn’t stop my nose from sending signals to my brain about wanting the curry. My brain just gave up when the signals kept bombarding it! hehehhe… ! An extra 10 minutes of exercise hmmmph.. !   

If you like this recipe, then you may also like – Karuveppilai/kadipatta/curry leaves chicken……Winters setting in… Cloudy Chicken soup with Thai flavours., Chicken Stew – Kerala Style , Chicken Puli Munchi/Chicken in Tangy Hot curry- Mangalorean style etc.

Dum-Aloo truly sinful baby potatoes in a spicy onion-cashew gravy….

Dum-Aloo truly sinful baby potatoes in a spicy onion-cashew gravy….

A simple dish, yet so flavourful. This is something I have been meaning to post from a long time. Baby potatoes are a favourite in our kitchen. They have a very distinct sweet flavour & they are just so silky smooth in this curry… A definite must try for all potato & Indian curry lovers. So easy to prepare but, the time taken is a wee longer compared to other curry’s, but then if you are looking for a good curry then you better not complain. Try it out once & it will frequent your kitchen very often then on.

Indulging in a curry with some cashews as the base is not a sin..! Every once in a while you do need to pamper yourself with a rich curry. Look at the brighter side – there is no butter, cream or cheese.. its healthier since you are adding some curd/yogurt. But please don’t go skinny on the yogurt too, else you are going to destroy the dish.

A typical dish from the Northern state of India – Punjab. You can’t say no to Punjabi curry’s can you?? A very staple recipe from a Punjabi family’s house. You will find loads of recipe’s for this dish over the internet. This is the way I make it at home. Being a friday post, hope this gives you an opportunity to try this dish out over the weekend. A true delight & you will never order this at an Indian restaurant again, since you will master this at home with this recipe. :D
Dum-Aloo truly sinful baby potatoes in a spicy onion-cashew gravy….

Ingredients: (Serves 3-4) Preparation Time: 45 mins
Baby potatoes – 22-25, washed
Cinnamon – 1/2 inch piece
Green Cardamom – 2 cloves
Cashews – 10-12 whole
Cloves – 3-4 whole
Bay leaves – 1 medium-sized leaf, torn into 3-4 pieces
Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp
Coriander seeds – 1 tbsp
Asafoetida – 2 pinches
Ginger – 1 inch piece, roughly chopped
Garlic – 5-6 cloves, peeled & roughly chopped
Onion – 1 large, roughly chopped
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Red chilli powder/Dried Kashmiri Chilli’s – 1 tsp/4-5; Alter according to your palate as the spices used will also make the dish hot
Fresh curd/Natural yogurt – 3/4 cup
Kasuri Methi/Dried Fenugreek leaves – 1 tbsp, crushed between your palms
Sugar – 1 tsp
Coriander leaves (Optional) – 1-2 sprigs, finely chopped
Cooking oil – 1/2 tsp + 1 tbsp
Salt to taste

Take a small fry pan & dry roast the spices – cloves, cumin, coriander seeds, cinnamon along with the cashews. If you have Kashmiri chilli’s add them too (i.e. if you plan to use dried chilli’s instead of the store-bought powder). Maintain heat at medium. Do not burn the spices. Roast them till the aroma of all the roasting spices fills up your nose & they begin to slightly change in colour. Turn the heat off. Keep aside to cool.

Bring about a litre of water to a boil in a pressure cooker. Add generous amount of salt to the water for the baby potatoes to absorb some. Add the washed baby potatoes. When the water begins to bubble, cover with the lid & cook for 10 minutes with the cooker weight on, at medium heat. Turn off the heat & let the cooker cool. It is perfectly fine if the cooker does not blow its whistle at all.

Meanwhile, when the potatoes are cooking away, transfer the dry roasted spices & cashews to a blender jar & powder them to a fine powder. Keep it aside.

If the pressure is off the pressure cooker, open it transfer the baby potatoes to a bowl of cold water. Notice that the potatoes are not completely cooked & they are still firm. Now peel their skin away. Next pierce the potatoes with a fork in 2-3 places so as to help them absorb the flavours from the gravy.

Heat 1 tsp oil in deep bottom non stick fry pan. When the oil is hot a pinch of asafoetida & let it sizzle for a couple of seconds. Turn heat to low & throw in the baby potatoes. Slowly cook them on all sides till they turn golden brown.

Fry the baby potatoes till golden brown..

Probably will take you 12-15 minutes on low heat. While the potatoes are frying away, keeping a close eye on them, mince the roughly chopped onions, garlic & ginger using a mini chopper or food processor.

Take out the golden brown potatoes from the frying pan & transfer them to a kitchen paper to drain away the excess oil.

In the same fry pan add 1 tbsp of oil. Maintain heat at medium. Once the oil heats up, throw in a pinch of asafoetida, let it sizzle for a couple of seconds. Next add the torn bay leaf, fry for about 30-40 seconds till its aroma fills up the air around. Now add the minced onion-ginger-garlic paste. Add some salt to help the onions turn translucent quicker & mix well. When the onion is cooking to turn translucent, beat the curd/natural yogurt to remove any lumps.

Once the onion turns translucent add the turmeric & the freshly ground spice paste & mix well. Add the red chilli powder if you did not use whole dried red chilli’s while preparing the fresh spice powder.Let the mixture cook for a couple of minutes. Now add the beaten curd/yogurt to the frying pan along with the sugar. Mix well. Turn the heat to low.

Once the mixture begins to bubble, throw in the golden baby potatoes along with the crushed kasuri methi. Add about 300 ml water, add salt to taste & give it a good mix. Cover with a lid & cook on low heat for 10-12 minutes, till all the raw flavours fade away & the excess water has evaporated leaving behind a gravy with the consistency you need. Originally this dish is served with a thick gravy sticking to the potatoes.

Note: Be around & check once midway so that the gravy does not begin to burn from the bottom. If you cannot be around, heat a heavy pancake pan/tava & transfer the frying pan with the potatoes over the tava & cook on low heat for 15 minutes or till the desired consistency is achieved.

Garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves if required. You can opt not to as the gravy already has an awesome flavour from the Kasuri Methi.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot with Roti’s/Chapati’s/Naan or your favourite Indian breads. This also is a good accompaniment for Vegetable Pilaf/Jeera/Peas Pilaf.

Dum-Aloo truly sinful baby potatoes in a spicy onion-cashew gravy….

If you like this recipe, then you may also like – Meen Varatharachathu… another fish delicacy from Kerala..!Makai Malai Palak/Sweetcorn in a creamy spinach sauce..Kumbh Mutter Masala with a Shahi twist to it..! etc.

Meen Varatharachathu… another fish delicacy from Kerala..!

Meen Varatharachathu.... a fragrant  fish curry from the land of Kerala..

From the very first time I tasted Basa, I just fell in love with it. The meat was so juicy & it just melted in my mouth. I had, had a basa sizzler when I was out with a friend. The meat does not smell at all, unlike most other fish. If you like haddock, then you will surely love it. The meat is firmer than haddock though & doesn’t break into pieces when cooking. I always found haddock melting away when I tried Indian curry’s with it. Have any of you faced such issues with Haddock??

K is very particular when it comes to fish, he won’t eat just about any fish. I’m particular too, but my preference is different. I don’t eat fresh water fish, I only eat Sea fish. K’s fish-eating depends largely on how the fish smells too ;). He won’t come anywhere around a sardine dish, forget eating it. He picks out the skin if he find it on the fish. I don’t blame him though, since he only ate fish once in a while at restaurants. He always prefers fish like Salmon, Haddock, Seer fish etc. whose bone placement is predictable. So, when I discovered this lovely fish I knew for sure he would fall in love with it, just like I did.

Meen Varatharachathu....

For those of you who have never given this fish a try I highly recommend it, the meat is white & nice & firm (when bought fresh of course ;)). It is easily available as fillets at the fish mongers. No bones, no hassles cleaning & making sure the scales are not present. The meat can be cut into smaller chunks, its perfect for an Indian fish curry as it does not disintegrate.

From the time I unpacked my Kitchen Aid mixer, K & I have moved on to eating a lot of Roti, fulka’s, paratha’s etc. as kneading the dough is not a big issue anymore. Our rice consumption has gone down considerably. I sometimes wonder how life changes you, it comes as a shock to K too, I settle easily to eat roti’s now. (If you have read my older posts you would know that I’m a rice eater. A meal was never complete without rice for me). It had been long since I ate some rice with a good curry to go with. I was looking for a hot flavourful curry & suddenly remembered that my aunt had passed me an old cookery book filled with various traditional recipe’s from Kerala. Since I love fish & so do Keralites (People who belong to the state of Kerala) I was thrilled when she passed on this book to me. You are sure to catch some more of their lovely recipe’s on the blog.

Meen Varatharachathu....

Tip: In Kerala Seer fish is usually used for this curry, you can use any fish which remains firm for this curry.

Ingredients: (Serves 2-3)       Preparation Time: 25 mins
Basa/Seer fish – 250 gms, cleaned & cut into 2-3 inch chunks
Garlic – 8-10 cloves, peeled
Ginger – 2 cm piece,
Turmeric powder – 1/8 tsp
Red Chilli powder – 1.5 – 2 tsp depending on your tolerance
Onion – 1 large, finely chopped
Green chilli’s – 4, slit or roughly chopped
Fenugreek seeds – 1/2 tsp
Tamarind – marble sized ball
Coriander powder – 2 tbsp
Tomato – 1 large, chopped into chunks
Coriander leaves – 4-5 sprigs, chopped
Oil – 2 tbsp
Salt to taste

For the fresh ground paste:
Fennel seeds – 1 tsp
Coconut – 1/2 of a medium-sized, grated
Shallots – 3-4, chopped
Curry leaves – 10-12

Soak the tamarind in about 100 ml water. Use a tsp of oil & roast the fennel, coconut, shallots & curry leaves till all these are golden brown. Make sure you maintain the heat at medium-low once the ingredients are in the oil and constantly keep tossing them around, we do not want to burn them. Once done keep it aside to cool.

Fry the ingredients mentioned for the freshly ground paste till golden brown..

Make a fresh paste out of the ginger & garlic. Keep aside.

Heat the rest of the oil in a medium-sized kadai or pot. Maintain heat at medium. Add fenugreek, when it changes colour add the chopped onion, green chilli’s & sauté till the onions turn translucent. Add a pinch of salt to help fry the onions.

Note: Fenugreek burns quickly, keep a constant check.

Next add the ginger garlic paste and fry for a couple of minutes. Add turmeric, red chilli, coriander powder & fry for a couple of minutes. Squeeze the juice out of the soaking tamarind & throw away the pulp. Add the tamarind juice along with another 200 ml water. Simmer & let the water begin to bubble. Add some salt to taste.

Meanwhile, grind the golden roasted coconut & rest of the ingredients to a smooth paste in a blender. Add water as required to help grind them to a smooth paste.

Now add the fish pieces & tomatoes to the bubbling water. Cook till the fish is done.

Add the fish & cook till done..

Now add the ground coconut paste, along with a cup of water.

Add the freshly ground coconut paste...

Mix well. Check seasoning. Simmer & let the curry come to a boil. Turn off the heat.

Garnish with additional curry leaves & chopped coriander leaves.

Meen Varatharachathu....

Serving Suggestions:
Serve with a bowl of boiled rice or steamed rice.

Meen Varatharachathu.... a fragrant  fish curry from the land of Kerala..


From the villages of Tamil Nadu, a yummy Fish curry – Makerel curry…

Makeral Curry... from the villages of Tamil Nadu..

I’m sure you are surprised to see my post today.. been ages isn’t it? I’m not going to apologise this time.. because it looks like I have been doing the disappearing act too often. Whats kept me busy was shifting.. Can you believe it???@!!! Gosh yes,!! you read it right.. In the last 2 years I have only been shifting houses every 5-6 months. Now you can’t complain about me playing the disappearing act, since each one of you would have experienced it at some time in your lives. Phew!!! That is the nitty-gritty of the disappearance act, been busy setting up my house & buying all the required ingredients to stock up my pantry. I love new places, meeting new people, making new friends, yes.. but I have been doing it way too often now.. but glad this time I’m still in Bangalore.. :)

Things seem to have changed in Bangalore. New places are up, old places have vanished.. not just the store being renovated or taken over by a new business, there are whole new buildings that have come up & changed the whole outlook of the place.My scouting around for ingredients is almost over. I think I have found my places now, but the whole issue this time around is that I don’t find things in stock when I go to buy them… & they lie there on the shelves when I don’t need them.

Now cutting out all my usual rantings… this curry is just plain wonderful.. If you love a fish curry that’s such a heavenly blend of different ingredients then, this is it.. you have found the right recipe. Isn’t that colour very tempting? Oh, come on! it sure is.. Well if the colour is not then go ahead & cook it.. you will then agree that to the fact that the aroma is very tempting indeed :D. Just the right curry to cook small fish in. This recipe was passed on to me by my aunt. She had this curry ready when I reached her home for dinner and the foodie that I am, just loved it from the very first whiff from the fish pot.

The villages in Tamil Nadu have distinct & very flavourful recipes, unlike the urban ones which focus on quick & easy ways to prepare the same dish. This dish tastes yummier when the freshly ground paste is prepared using the stone grinder & the paste ground with loads of love using the hand held pestle, this device is referred to as the ambi (the base) & kulavi (the stone part that moves & grinds). Chutney or any paste ground using this has a completely different flavour.

From the villages of Tamil Nadu, a yummy Fish curry - Makerel curry…!

I have used earthenware to cook the fish curry, just like my aunt did :). My grandmother always cooked fish in earthenware on firewood. It sure does add a lovely flavour to the curry. Damn! I had to give up the idea of cooking using firewood because I do not have that setup with me. But those of you who have had their grandmother/mothers cook fish curry in earthenware on firewood would know what I mean.. it is absolutely delicious. If you get a chance to cook this curry that way… go ahead & indulge :)!

Ingredients: (Serves 3-4)        Preparation Time: 60 mins
Baby Mackerel/any small fish of your choice – 1/2 kg, cleaned & drained

Baby Makerel...
Note: I do not cook the fish with its head, but you could if you wish to
Onion – 1 medium-sized, finely chopped
Green chilli’s – 2, chopped
Tomatoes – 2 medium-sized, cubed
Coriander leaves – 3 sprigs, chopped
Curry leaves – 2 sprigs
Coconut oil – 2 tbsp
Salt to taste

To prepare the freshly ground paste
Grated coconut – 1 cup
Fennel seeds – 1/2 tsp
Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp
Garlic – 10 medium-sized cloves
Shallots/sambhar onions – 3-4, peeled
Coriander powder – 1 tbsp
Red chilli powder – 1 tsp or more, use as per your taste
Fenugreek seeds – 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves – a handful
Coconut Oil – 2 tbsp, use oil of your choice if you do not like the flavour of coconut oil

Heat 2 tbsp of coconut oil in a fry pan. Set heat at medium. Add the fenugreek seeds, fry them till they begin to turn soft, throw in the onions. Fry till the onion turns translucent. Now add all the other ingredients mentioned for the fresh paste. Fry all the ingredients for a couple of minutes. Lower the heat if the fry pan gets too hot, we do not want to burn the ingredients. Once you can smell the heavenly aroma of all the ingredients turn the heat off, let it cool.

Ingredients for the fresh paste.. cooled & ready to be ground to a smooth paste...

Once the ingredients for the paste have cooled down, blend all of them into a smooth paste.

Heat 2 tbsp of coconut oil in a pot. Set heat to medium. Once the oil heats up, fry the chopped onions, green chilli’s & tomatoes together. Throw in some salt to help fry them quicker. Once the tomatoes loosen up & the onions turn translucent, add the freshly ground paste. Mix well. Add 500 ml of water & mix well. Let the curry come to a boil. Now drop in the cleaned fish into the curry. Add salt to taste. Simmer & let the fish cook & absorb all the flavours.

Note: In about 5-8 minutes the fish should be cooked. Do over-cook the fish, since they are small fish, they can easily disintegrate into the curry.

Garnish with chopped coriander & curry leaves.

From the villages of Tamil Nadu, a yummy Fish curry - Makerel curry…

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot with a bowl of rice or chapatis’. And yes, traditionally eaten with Dosa/Idli as an accompaniment!

If you like this recipe, then you may also like – Quick fish curry – Salmon Phanna UpkariAlle Piyava Ghashi/Konkani style Fish curry..Meen Molee/Boneless fish pieces in a fragrant Kerala style coconut curryFish Fry with a Konkani style batterTava fried prawns etc.

Goan Chorizo/Pork Sausage Chilly….

Goan Chorizo/Pork Sausage Chilly

Hiya… Happy New Year to all.. !! Hope all of you have had a lovely time with family & friends this holiday season.. I’m guilty for not showing my presence around from a while now.. Back in Bangalore now. I have been getting lazy & feeling lethargic, taking a break from cooking while I was in Mangalore, at my mum’s place & feasting on home food & the other favourites from the eateries around. Spent a few days at my aunt’s place in Calicut, got pampered by her as well.. ;). Had a rendezvous in Goa for a couple of days.. all we did was drink, eat & laze on the beach… Bliss.. I had to carry back some Goan Chorizo or Pork sausages. The owner of place we stayed in was kind enough to sell us some homemade chorizo from the stash he picks up for himself.

Goan Chorizo/Pork Sausage Chilly...Goan Chorizo/Pork Sausage Chilly...

All those who love the Mexican style Chorizo will love these. A very tasty recipe this is. Hardly requires any effort & time from you; just add the staple chopped veggies used in most dish, along with some water to the crushed chorizo & you end up with a some hot, spicy, finger-licking accompaniment to go with some warm bread/pao/pav. The only effort required is to find some of these sausages in your city ;). I have found them in stores in Mangalore & friends tell me that it is available in Mumbai as well. Next time you visit Goa, don’t forget to pick some of these sausages on your way back. :)

Ingredients: (Serves 3)       Preparation Time: 30-40 mins

Goan Chorizo & other ingredients..
Goan Chorizo – 1 link, approximately 250 gms, shell removed & the meat broken/crushed into bits.
Onion – 1 large, chopped
Tomato – 1 large, chopped
Green chilli’s – 3, finely chopped
Potatoes – 1 medium-sized, cubed
Water – 250 ml
Salt to taste

To a deep bottom pan, add all the ingredients.

Throw in all the ingredients together...

Toss the ingredients around for a couple of minutes till they all warm up. Next add the glass of water, throw in a pinch of salt.

Add water & a pinch of salt....

Just a pinch since the sausages already have salt content. Simmer when the water begins to bubble; let the meat & potatoes cook. Should take you approximately 30 mins. You will see some oil separate out of the fat when all the water evaporates & leave you a shiny dish.

Goan Chorizo/Pork Sausage Chilly ready..

Note: If the meat & the potatoes are not cooked & the water has already evaporated, then add some more water.

Tip: If you want the meat potatoes fried a little, cook on high for a couple of minutes, once the water evaporates & the meat & potatoes are cooked. Else if you like some gravy with your chorizo add some extra water when cooking. 

The smoky aroma that builds up around your home is sure to pull in some neighbours.. ! A yummy one pot dish for sure… !!!

Best relished:
Serve hot with some warm bread/pao/pav. Such an awesome, quick recipe, sure to blow your senses away..!!

Goan Chorizo/Pork Sausage Chilly...

If you like this recipe, then you may also like – Dukra Maas – as they call it in Mangalore; the best Pork curry ever!!!Sweet & Sour Pork….Pork ChukkaBlanketed Frankfurters…Greek Souvlaki wrap with salad & tzatziki etc.

Mutton Chilli Masala……..

Mutton Chilli Masala……

Mutton on your mind? No bother if it’s not, it has been on my mind for a while now.. !A few of my friends have been waiting for me to post some Mutton recipes. Back in Glasgow I was unable to do so.I’m not a huge fan of lamb ;), hence you don’t see any lamb recipe’s :). To tell you the truth, after I started my blog, I hardly had a pang to cook lamb.. I do like mutton though, but not as much as I like my fish/chicken curry.

Mutton Chilli Masala...

Since I had not eaten mutton for close to 2 years I had a craving to eat some good mutton. Mum never cooks mutton, so dad instantly said Mutton when I asked him what he wanted me to cook.. ;)Dad sourced some mutton through a friend. Mutton is a tricky meat, well that’s my take on this meat. 

Oops, pardon me for not mentioning it earlier, Goat meat is referred to as Mutton in India. This meat like most red meat takes longer to cook, sometimes unusually long too depending on the type of breed the goat belongs to. Ya well, it took me an hour to cook this meat perfectly, under pressure in a pressure cooker. The things people do to cook & eat certain food.. ;)  What you need while cooking mutton is a whole lot of patience.

Cooking in a kitchen which is not your’s is always tough.. even if its your mum’s kitchen it still is an adventure.. Things have all changed.. it’s not how I remember it… I have to constantly nag my mum to hand me the different ingredients..With all the small tiffs & disagreements in between the cooking, on why things have been moved.. why she does not stock up on certain things anymore.. blah blah.. its sure looks like a battle..! ;)

Finally, I had to do with what she had stocked up in her pantry.. I should not really blame her now for not stocking up on certain ingredients as this new recipe would not have been born else. I won’t complain as my dad loved it.. & I second it.. :) It was perfect with Dosa & with rice.. sadly my bro did not get to taste it. :D

I’ll let you in on a secret.. this is the second time I cooked Mutton. I have cooked Lamb many times.. :) Well don’t doubt my abilities though. This dish turned out to be perfect & yummy. The curry leaves have their evergreen inviting aroma that draws your hand instantly towards this dish.. the occasional bite into the green chilli bits or the black pepper leave a craving for more & the lovely onion & garlic gravy that envelopes the juicy mutton pieces are just finger-licking good.. !

Mutton Chilli Masala...

I wanted to hold a small bake sale for Christmas.. & the electrical equipment dealers in Karnataka played spoil sport. No dealer has the model in stock or have any clue about the date when they expect the shipment to arrive. Can you believe it!!!?!!. I’m so annoyed.. :(!!!! So all the baking is paused till I get my hands on what I need…

Ingredients: (Serves 3-4)  Preparation Time: 80-90 mins (Excludes time for marination)
Mutton – 500 gms with bones, curry cut, washed & drained
Cloves – 4
Star anise – half of one star
Bay leaves – 1 large leaf, torn into 2-3 pieces
Dried red chilli’s – 3-4 roughly torn, medium-spicy variety, I used the byadge variety
Onions – 1 medium-sized, finely chopped
Ginger – 1 inch piece, finely chopped
Garlic – 1 pod, skin on, bruised using a mortar & pestle
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Red chilli powder – 1 tsp
Coriander powder – 1 tsp
Freshly ground peppercorns – 1 tsp
Garam Masala powder – 1/2 tsp
Green chilli’s = 2, finely chopped
Curry leaves – 8-10 leaves
White Vinegar – 1.5 tsp
Clarified butter/ghee – 1 tbsp
Salt to taste

Marinate the mutton with turmeric, red chilli, coriander powders, salt & the freshly ground peppercorns for at least 30 mins. Heat the ghee in a pressure cooker pan. Once the ghee melts & heats up, add the dry spices – cloves, bay leaves, star anise along with the red chilli’s. Simmer & let the flavours infuse into the ghee.
Do not burn the ghee or the spices. Next add the bruised garlic & finely chopped ginger. Fry for a minute. Now add onions with a pinch of salt & fry them till they turn translucent.

Now throw in the marinated mutton pieces with any leftover spice powders left. Toss them around for a couple of minutes.
Next add about 400-500ml water, just enough to cover the mutton pieces & let the water bubble. Add salt to taste (Remember that you marinated the mutton with salt, so add accordingly).

Cover the pressure cooker with its lid & insert its weight, maintain the heat at simmer & pressure cook the chicken for at least 6 whistles. Turn off the heat & let the pressure cooker lose its pressure before you open.

Check if the meat is cooked, else close & pressure cook again for a couple more whistles.
Once the meat is cooked, place the cooker back on heat again, without the lid & simmer. There would be a good amount of water left back in the pressure cooker. Add the finely chopped green chilli’s, garam masala, vinegar & check & adjust the salt. (If you want spice up the curry some more, add more green chilli’s).

Tip: If you like a wee bit more vinegar in your food then add another tsp.

Now its your call if you need this dish as a curry or as semi-gravy. Based on your choice, let the curry simmer or turn off the heat. Throw in the curry leaves just before you turn off the heat.

Mutton Chilli Masala...

How I ate it..
Hot, as an accompaniment with boiled rice for lunch & then the left overs with some Dosa for breakfast… :) slurp..! This dish will be perfect with some sanna’s or Idli’s & chapatis’ too.. Take your pick.. !

K is away with my laptop. I only managed this one pic. More to be uploaded soon.. :)

Tip: The leftovers taste better than the freshly cooked curry.. ;) So make sure you have some left over for the next day.. !!! Also make sure you heat the leftover curry before you eat it, since the ghee & the fat from the meat tend to solidify.

You may also enjoy – Chicken Puli Munchi/Chicken in Tangy Hot curry- Mangalorean styleKori Ghassi/Mangalorean style chicken curryChicken Stew – Kerala StylePudina/Mint Chicken with hints of CilantroDukra Maas – as they call it in Mangalore; the best Pork curry ever!!! etc.

Karuveppilai/kadipatta/curry leaves chicken……

Karuveppilai/kadipatta/curry leaves chicken……

I’m visiting Mangalore after about 2 years. Feels awesome being home. All the lazing around, the silence (hate the traffic noise all over Bangalore, you rarely find a place where it is quiet unless you have noise eliminating windows fitted), all yummy food you get at home & small quaint places around. My little brother is an encyclopaedia & he has a list of the best dish on the menu for almost every good eatery/restaurants around. Since I left to Manipal to attend University I never had the opportunity to explore all the places where my brother frequented.

Mum prepares such amazing food which I miss so much that I hardly go out to eat when in Mangalore. I stuffed myself so much with breakfast & lunch that I could not eat anything as an evening snack  & I skipped dinner as well. This is what I end up doing when I’m back home- hog, hog & hog even more.

Karuveppilai/kadipatta/curry leaves chicken……

This recipe is from my mums recipe trove. This dish is infused with lovely flavours from Tamil Nadu. You could adjust this recipe based on your taste to have loads of runny curry or a thick curry or make it dry as a starter. Even though this recipe uses very few ingredients it tastes amazing with rice/chapati’s or even as a starter.

Karuveppilai/kadipatta/curry leaves chicken……

Ingredients: (Serves 2-3)     Preparation Time: 20 mins
Chicken – 500 gms curry cut pieces
Ginger – 1 inch piece
Garlic – 3-4 cloves
Yogurt – 1 tbsp
Red onion – 1 medium-sized, diced
Red chilli powder – 1/2-1 tsp
Salt to taste

Some of the ingredients..

For the freshly ground paste:
Grated Coconut – 1 cup
Green chilli’s – 8 slit
Curry leaves – 10 sprigs + a few for garnishing
Cooking oil – 2 tbsp
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp

Prepare a fresh paste out of the ginger & garlic. Wash & drain the chicken. Marinate the chicken with the yogurt, the freshly prepared ginger garlic paste & some salt. Let the chicken marinate for about at least 30 minutes.

While the chicken gets marinated, we can prepping up for the paste. Heat a tbsp of oil in a small fry pan. Once it heats up, reduce the heat to low, add the cumin seeds & let it sizzle & then add the green chilli’s. Now add the curry leaves & the coconut. Fry till the grated coconut begins to turn light brown.

Fry the ingredients for the paste..

Turn the heat off & let it cool before you grind this to a smooth paste.

Freshly grated coconut & curry leaves paste..

Add the 1 tbsp of oil to a pot & heat it. Once the oil is hot, reduce the heat to medium & throw in the onions along with some salt. Once the onions turn translucent add the marinated chicken & toss the chicken till the meat turns white.

Fry the chicken till the meat turns white..

Now add the freshly ground curry leaves & coconut paste. Mix it well.

Add the freshly ground paste..

Note: Remember that the chicken also lets out some water as it cooks..

Season with salt & add red chilli powder. Simmer & cook till the raw flavours fade away, adjust the thickness of the curry as per your requirement. Once the oil separates from the curry, check if the chicken is cooked & turn the heat off once it is.

Garnish with some curry leaves.

Serving Suggestions:
Now serve hot with your choice of accompaniment like rice/chapati’s or as a starter.

Karuveppilai/kadipatta/curry leaves chicken……

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Dukra Maas – as they call it in Mangalore; the best Pork curry ever!!!

Dukra Maas..

Anyone born or brought up or who has something to do with Mangalore would have definitely heard about the famous Dukra Maas.. If you have not,then its a shame.. go bury your head somewhere !! I’m kidding, of course. If you have not heard of it, well then there is always a first time.. & I’m glad you did through this post on my blog. Pork lovers should definitely not miss such a delightful recipe.

Dukra Maas..

If you follow me through the Keli Paan page on Facebook, you would know that I have a terrible cold brewing up from within. A runny nose accompanied with a terrible headache & loads of crumpled tissues in my dustbin. Since we are moving back to India I have been looking into my pantry to use up the groceries I can & my eyes had fallen on the packet of Bafat powder. I knew instantly that this curry would cheer me up. :) I took a walk down to the grocers despite the horrible wet Scottish weather to buy some pork. I wanted a hot bowl of soup & Dukra Maas to cheer me up. While sipping on some soup I made myself, the pork simmering away & the aroma started lifting my spirits. That was the state I was in yesterday.. I’m much better today.

Dukra Maas..

All my friends know my love for pork & I guess you would too if you have been around while I had pork dishes posted on Keli Paan! The first time I remember eating pork ever was in my Pre-University days & I was like damn.. what was I thinking of? Why didn’t I ever take a bite out of my schoolmates lunch boxes when they brought pork for lunch on Mondays to school??!!??? Guess had there been a microwave oven back then during school times my friends would have had to either carry an extra portion for me or forget their lunch. That’s how crazy I am about this meat. To top it all, this curry tastes even more fabulous the next day; as the pork absorbs all the lovely spices & flavours of the added ingredients. I also loved being invited to a Catholic wedding or a roce or any function because of the authentic dukra maas which will almost always be on the menu.

Dukra Maas..

Dukar/Dukkar is a pig in Konkani & maas is meat. This curry is like a sunday ritual in almost every Catholic home. A typical Catholic family wakes up every sunday morning, attends the mass/the service in their Parish/Church; gets back home with a stop at the butchers to pick up fresh pork; & then the family waits for the mum/wife to fix this wonderful curry. This served often with uber soft idli’s called Sanna’s. The batter for the Sanna’s is usually prepared the night before, just like the batter for any Idli/Dosa, as it needs to ferment. (Recipe of Sanna’s will be up soon as well).

The weather in Mangalore is pretty hot & sultry as it is situated in the Arabian sea coastline. Men make sure they stop by at the Wine shop to pick up some beers & that’s usually chilling in the fridge or some opened in anticipation of the pork. A beer is the best to wash down the hot & spicy pork simmering away in the kitchen & it makes the wait unbearable.. !! I know all these details because I have been invited over to many friends houses on Sundays because of my love for pork & I really mean it when I say that the wait is unbearable; the aroma is so tantalising that you just want to go tell the aunty cooking that there is someone at the door asking for you & dig into the simmering pot & get out some pork before she chides you & shoo’s you away!

Dukra Maas...

Check out the ingredients, other than the bafat powder all the ingredients are always present in any pantry. I had ready-made Bafat powder which I got along with me to the UK. Store bought of course. Many households make their own though & I have asked a friend to pass on the recipe to me. So the recipe to make Bafat powder will soon hit Keli Paan, after some wait though. But for the rest who want to try this dish out, all you need to do is pester any Mangalorean friend you have to get it for you or ask them where you could pick it up from. :) It will be available in Mumbai & Bangalore for sure, in those good old Mangalorean bakeries.

Tip: Do make some extra & save some for the next day & you will not regret it, it sure is tastier the next day.

The next day...

The fat tends to thicken & form a layer on top which melts when heated up.

Ingredients: (Serves 2 – 3 )          Preparation Time: 3+ hrs (Includes time for marination)
Pork – 400 -500 gms, cubed or small pieces, I used pork belly pieces, throw away some of the fat if you want to, I like having some fat in the curry, so I leave some pieces
Bafat powder – 2.5 – 3 tbsp
Green chilli’s – 2 – 3, finely chopped
Ginger – 1.5 -2 inches piece, finely chopped
Garlic – 7-8 cloves, diced
Red Chilli powder – 1/4 – 1/2 tsp if the Bafat powder is not as spicy as you expected
Tamarind – 1/2 of a marble-sized ball soaked in some warm water
Bay leaves – 1,torn into a few pieces
Garam Masala powder – 1/2 tsp
White Vinegar – 2 tbsp + 1/2 tbsp Note: 1/2 tbsp is used to garnish in the end for that extra zing
Onions – 2 medium-sized, diced
Salt to taste

Marinating the pork:
Wash & drain the pork & keep aside. In a medium-sized pot, mix together the bafat masala, garam masala, ginger, garlic, salt,bay leaves, vinegar, green chilli’s along with the juice squeezed out from the soaking tamarind. Throw in the drained pork pieces. Mix well & let the pork marinate for at least an hour.

Marinated Pork...

Sorry about the Photograph above, clicked at night..

While the pork is marinating you can use this time to chop the onions & making some homemade bread if you wish to, because bread serves as a good accompaniment for this curry as well.

Once the pork has marinated for an hour, transfer this pot on to the stove & begin cooking the pork at low heat. Do not add any water at this stage. The pork lets out its juices & fat as times goes by & let it simmer away with an occasional stir, so that the pieces which are top also get to soak themselves in the juices.

The aroma will surely draw anyone sitting in you living room to the kitchen enquiring about what’s cooking ;), you may also have neighbours asking whats cooking.

When it’s about an hour after the pork has been simmering away, taste the curry & adjust the seasoning. Now is the time to add the extra bit of red chilli powder if you don’t find it hot enough. Throw in the diced onions & mix. Let the curry simmer away for another hour or so. Add about a cup of water. Add more if you prefer it with some gravy or curry. It’s made both ways, dry or with curry.

Go take your shower or watch your TV show. Check & adjust the salt once the onions look cooked & turn translucent. After about 2 hours, taste the pork. It should be cooked through, soft yet enough to chew on. When you begin to see the fat separate & float on top it’s nearly done. Let it simmer for another 10-15 minutes. Don’t overcook. Turn off the heat.

Garnishing: (optional)
Once you turn off the heat, add that extra 1/2 tbsp of vinegar if you wish to.

Dukra Maas..

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot with sanna’s or bread. Shevio/Shevai/Idiappam (Freshly prepared rice noodles, famous in & around the Western coastal regions of India) also is a good accompaniment.

Dukra Maas..

If you like this recipe, then you may also like – Sweet & Sour Pork….Pork ChukkaGreek Souvlaki wrap with salad & tzatzikiSweet Pepper & Soya Sausages etc.

Quick fish curry – Salmon Phanna Upkari

Salmon Phanna Upkari...

I was meaning to have this This typical Konkani post done once I was back in India & when in Mangalore; with the traditional varieties of fish generally used to prepare this dish like Sardines/mackerel, but damn I missed this curry so much that I had to post this. Another reason being I love Salmon. K likes Salmon too; decided why not? Salmon should taste good in this curry. 

Salmon Phanna Upkari...

My grand mum was seafood lovers delight. All thanks to my grandfather who could not let a day pass without having a piece of fish with his meal or so they say, I never had a chance to meet him as he passed away before I was born. My grandmother also got into that habit of – have to have a piece of fish with her meal. She got so good at it that all her relatives were always talking about eating her fish curries & fry’s. Most were sure to stop by for a meal at our house when they visited Mangalore & my grandmother was always ready to cook up a yummy meal & feed them :).

This recipe is the recipe passed on to my grandmother from her aunt, rather my great grand aunts recipe. Its yummy, a tad different from the way other GSB’s/Konkani’s make their Phanna Upkari. Check the ingredients, noting exotic, very few ingredients & yet its a burst of lovely flavours with every bite.

Diwali was always looked forward by me as a kid for crackers & for the amount of fish being cooked & served at home. Diwali was always during the retreating monsoons; this always meant that the sea is less rough & the markets are filled with a varieties of fish. The most popular fish for us during Diwali was Sear fish. There would be loads of fish masala in the fridge. Slices of sear fish marinated with that fiery red masala always sitting ready to be fried in the hot oil..! I can sit all day reminiscing about it.

This curry is hot, tangy & perfect with a bowl of hot steamed/boiled rice. As for the perfect day to have this would be a cold winter/rainy day because it warms you up really well.

Ingredients: (Serves 2)     Preparation Time: 15 mins
Salmon/fish of your choice – 400 gms, washed & cleaned & cut into big chunks
Onion – 1 large, chopped, divided into 1/4 & 3/4 portions
Red chilli powder (optional) – just to add an extra zing if the chilli’s you used does not give the required hot flavour
Cooking oil – 2 tsp
Salt to taste

For the freshly ground paste:
Dried red chilli’s – 10-12, use a mix of Kashmiri/byadgi(for the colour) & Kumte(for the spice), remove all the stalks/stems of the chilli’s
Tamarind – a half of marble sized piece
Coriander seeds – 1 tsp

In a blender jar add the red chilli’s add 1/4 cup water & grind them into a paste. When the seeds present in the chilli’s are finely ground add the tamarind & the coriander seeds. Grind everything into a smooth paste. Add some more water water if required.Freshly ground red chilli paste..Heat a saucepan, set the heat to medium. Transfer this freshly ground paste to the saucepan & add half a cup of water. Mix well. Let the mixture begin to bubble. Simmer & let the raw flavours fade away.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a small fry pan. Once hot throw in 3/4 portion of the onions. Add a pinch of salt & fry till golden brown. Keep aside.

Add more red chilli powder if its not as hot as you want it. Traditionally this curry is supposed to be filled with red chilli flavours & make you cry! Once the raw flavours fade away from the simmering curry, season with salt. Add more water if required, mix well. Add the fish pieces. Don’t mix the curry too much once you add the fish as the fish may tend to break. Once the fish begins to cook & turn white, add 1/4 portion of the onions. Now gently mix the curry taking care not to break the fish pieces. Check & adjust seasoning. Turn off the heat once the fish is cooked.

Curry ready..

Garnish with the fried onions. The super tasty phanna upkari which will surely make you cry & still crave for me is ready…! Keep your pets away.. they are sure to be drawn to your kitchen or your dining area with a whiff of these heavenly dish.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve with a hot bowl of steamed/boiled rice.

Salmon Phanna Upkari

If it does not make your nose run, your eyes tear then you have not made it the traditional way we eat it.. !! Thank heavens there are those golden brown onions which add thier awesome sweetness & its a perfect Phann (Phann refers to tempering in Konkani) for this curry.. 

I cooked this for dinner.. hence the pictures were clicked with lights rather than the natural light that I usually prefer.

Note: The colour of the curry solely depends on the type of dried red chilli’s used. So don’t be alarmed if it does not look as red as it does here.

If you like this recipe, then you may also like – Alle Piyava Ghashi/Konkani style Fish curry..Fish Fry with a Konkani style batterMeen Molee/Boneless fish pieces in a fragrant Kerala style coconut curryCrispy MusselsMy kind of Mix-Veg Thai Yellow Curry with PrawnsSungta Hinga Udda/Sungta Randai/Prawns cooked in a red hot coconut gravy – Konkani style/RHCP etc. 

Shahi Paneer.. Cottage Cheese Curry with a royal touch…

Shahi Paneer..

Thanks to all the love you guys showered upon me for the 200th post.. :) This just makes me wanna get back to my routine of posting a recipe everyday.. but I know it’s not really possible.. We are going on a holiday today.. So I won’t be around for the next few days..

Oh doesn’t this curry just look lovely.. look at the rich colour & texture.. Sure is tempting isn’t it? That is what I thought when Anil made it & I tasted it the first time.. the very look of it blew my mind.. the aroma is totally another thing,.. you will know what I’m talking about if you end up making this :) Anil is a friend of mine. He loves cooking as well. He is more into the Indian cooking & has some lovely recipe’s with his unique touch to it. 

 Shahi Paneer..

In this recipe he uses Paprika for the lovely colour.. The paprika adds its flavours which blend in so well.. so, this ain’t the usual restaurant curry that you get.. I’m so glad he shared this recipe with me. The secret ingredient is the garam masala here. He is a big fan of Badshah Garam Masala. I had never used that brand of until he asked me the secret.. & believe me I have discovered the perfect garam masala & now its my favourite as well. Try using this brand if you can get your hands on it.. :) Naah.. I’m not marketing for them…!

Paneer is K’s favourite & I have never heard him say no to Paneer. Yes, I have caught him stealing pieces of it from my plate many times.. That is how madly in love he is with them..!! So he absolutely loved this recipe.. licked his plate clean..! I don’t blame him at all.. I do the same with some of my favourites…. ;)
Tweak the red chilli powder as per your taste if you’re a mild curry eater.. Or go ahead & use a milder red chilli powder.. What I use is pretty hot..

Shahi Paneer..

Ingredients: (Serves 3-4)       Preparation Time: 30 – 40 mins
Paneer – 250 g, cubed
Onions – 4, medium-sized, roughly chopped
Tomatoes – 3, medium-sized, roughly chopped
Garlic – 6, cloves, roughly chopped
Ginger – 1 inch piece, roughly chopped
Paprika – 2 tsp
Red Chilli powder – 1 tsp
Cumin powder – 1 tsp
Coriander powder – 1 tsp
Garam Masala powder – 1 tsp
Cashews/Almonds – 15-20, soaked in hot water for over an hour.
Milk – full fat, 1/2 cup
Kasuri Methi – 1 tsp, crushed between the palms of your hand
Cooking oil/butter – 1 tbsp + 1 tbsp
Salt to taste

Heat 1 tbsp of oil/butter in a deep bottom fry pan & when hot add the ginger,garlic, onions & tomatoes & set heat to medium. Throw in some salt to help cook them faster. Cook them, do not fry them. When the onions turn translucent, the tomatoes loose their stiffness & turn into pulp, turn the heat off. Set aside & let them cool.

Meanwhile you can peel the skin off the almonds if you opted to use almonds instead of cashews & add them to a blender jar along with the milk & grind them to a smooth paste. Keep aside.

Add the cooked onion,tomato, Ginger & garlic paste to a blender jar & turn it into a smooth paste. Do not add water.

Now, turn the heat back on & add 1 tbsp of oil. Add the ground onion-tomato paste to the oil when hot. Throw in the spice powders one by one. Simmer & cook till the raw flavours fade away & the oil/butter begins to separate. Check seasoning & adjust. Once the raw flavours fade away add the almond/cashew milk paste & mix well. Lower heat.If the curry turns too thick, add some more milk to achieve the required consistency. Add the paneer cubes & cook further for another 5-6 minutes or till the curry begins to bubble. Turn the heat off.

Transfer to a serving bowl. Garnish with the crushed kasuri methi. You may also want to add a small cube of butter on top before adding the Kasuri Methi. :)

Shahi Paneer served with Jeera Rice...

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot with Indian breads of your choice or any rice dish like Jeera rice or peas pulav/pilaf & dig in right away… :)


If you like this recipe, then you may also like – Paneer/Cottage cheese burji with hints of Celery…Paneer/Cottage Cheese Tava Masala…Paneer Enchiladas/Cottage cheese Enchiladas infused with Indian flavoursPaneer Methi Malai Kali Mirch etc.


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