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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.

Strawberry-Basil Raita with toasted sesame seeds……

Strawberry-Basil Raita with toasted sesame seeds..

Experimenting should be my middle name, Oh well, that’s a lame one, don’t we all experiment with food?? Yes, of course we do. Now what made me experiment with strawberries & yogurt?? What could one possibly do when one ends up with half a litre of sourish yogurt & sour strawberries..? :( I did not have enough strawberries to make jam out of it, then again I would need to use the yogurt in another recipe. I was looking to do something with both together. I don’t like to throw away food, you would know that about me if you have been following my posts. If the food is still edible, why throw it away? If the person who had ended up with curdled milk had not experimented then we would have never known what cheese was all about. :) Enough of my lectures, I don’t want to bore you.

Strawberry-Basil Raita with toasted sesame seeds...

This is a very simple yet yummy raita. Will be ready in a jiffy. Just pick up some sour strawberries, a few basil leaves, 1 cup of sour yogurt (Do not worry if you do not have sour yogurt, use just natural yogurt). Any chilli of your choice to spice it up, honey to balance the sourness & some toasted sesame seeds for garnishing. A blend of fresh flavours.. best served chilled.

A rare day today for Keli Paan, rare because it has been ages since I did two posts on the blog. It is february & all my recent posts have been had loads of red in the ingredients or the photos.. :D. But I’m not that sorts who believes in celebrating one day for love..!

Strawberry-Basil Raita with toasted sesame seeds...

Ingredients: (Serves 2)     Preparation Time: 5 mins
Yogurt – Sour preferably, else Natural is fine, I used homemade
Strawberries – 4-5 medium-sized
Honey – 1 tbsp to balance or kill the sourness
Fresh Red chilli – 1, medium-spicy, slit, de-seeded
Basil leaves – 3, roughly torn
Sesame seeds – 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste

Toast the sesame seeds in a small fry pan and keep aside. Wash & hull the strawberries.
Add the yogurt to a blender & blend it well to make it smooth. If you are adventurous like me add the chilli along with the basil & blend it again till the chilli’s & basil get minced. Next add the strawberries & blend just for about 10 seconds. I wanted small pieces of strawberries to chew on in the raita.

Tip: If you do not wish to blend the strawberries then, you can chop them finely & add.

Add some salt to season & add the chilli if you have not blended it earlier with the yogurt like I did.

I made 2 batches of these today, with 2 different types of chilli’s. One version with dried red chilli’s & another version with a small piece of minced scotch bonnet chilli’s. The first version was not hot, whereas the one with the Scotch bonnet chilli’s was hot. So you can choose what type of chilli you want to use. Go ahead with some freshly ground peppercorns if you wish to or a pinch of ground red chilli powder/paprika/cayenne pepper powder.

Note: If you are making this for your kids, you can add just a pinch of the chilli & a wee bit more honey.

Strawberry-Basil Raita with toasted sesame seeds..

Garnish with the toasted sesame seeds just before you serve for that nutty crunch in the raita.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve as a side with any Pilaf or biryani.

Strawberry-Basil Raita with toasted sesame seeds..

Or eat it just as is for a snack just like I did.. :D On a day like today, this was perfect to beat the heat off..! 

Kesar Elaichi Shrikhand.. A Diwali Special post..

Kesar Elaichi Shrikhand..

While I was adding the picture slideshow to the different recipe category pages, I noticed that the dessert section hardly had any entries, I may not be have a sweet tooth but people who follow my blog sure do, why should I deprive them of the sweet adventures! Having said this, does not mean that I don’t know to make some of the Indian sweet dishes.. K loves sweets.. So, I do make some for him.. :)

Kesar Elaichi Shrikhand..

Indians love sweets.. & with not even a fortnight left for Diwali I got to post a few sweet dishes before some of my friends begin to ask for some recipes. Since Greek set yogurt is easily available here, thought I should try my hands at making some Shrikhand… Oh, for those who are wondering what Diwali is, it is an Indian festival; called the festival of lights..!! It’s a huge festival celebrated by exchanging sweets, lighting small oil lamps around the house when the sun sets, new clothes, colours & festivities everywhere around.. & not to forget the sky filled with beautiful & colourful firecrackers..!!

You would have guessed from all the chatter above & the pictures that Shrikhand is an Indian sweet dish. It is famous in the states of Gujarat & Maharashtra.. It is made from strained yogurt,sweetened with sugar & flavoured with the most famous flavours – cardamom & saffron. Sometimes just with cardamom. It is also available in Pistachio & Mango flavours. It is silky smooth… & filled with loads of calories.. Don’t worry you can’t possibly eat the whole bowl.. it’s too heavy.. So you can’t indulge on loads of it unless you’re a glutton.. :) A version with fresh fruits is also available. It usually chilled before being served.. So you can imagine how heavenly & silky smooth this is.. :)

Kesar Elaichi Shrikhand..

In the state of Gujarat this is eaten as an accompaniment with the Indian bread called Puri/Poori’s. Yes, Gujarat is another state obsessed with sweets & closely competes with Bengal.. :) Both these states have a variety of sweets to offer. Now you know which states not to miss if you have a sweet tooth & you happen to visit India.. :)

Ingredients: (Serves 6 – 8)       Preparation Time: 20 mins (Excludes time to strain the yogurt & chill the Shrikhand)
Greek yogurt/full fat thick-set yogurt – 2 tubs of a litre each
Muslin Cloth
Sugar – 1 cup or more, based on your taste
Elaichi/Caedmon – 12-14 cloves, de-skinned, seeds coarsely powdered
Kesar/Saffron – a pinch soaked in a tsp of warm milk (love the aroma of saffron in milk & of course the colour is so beautiful) + a pinch to serve (optional)
Powdered almonds/chopped pistachios – 1-2 tbsp (optional, sprinkled just before you serve) (I ran out of powdered almonds so used whole almonds)

Fold the large piece of muslin cloth into 2, so that is a wee bit thick. Now place the cloth in a large bowl. Make sure there is enough cloth & it comes out of the bowl. Empty one tub of a litre of greek yogurt into the cloth. Do the same with the next one. The excess water will start to trickle out once you lift the cloth with all the loose ends held tightly in your fist. Make sure you have the bowl at the bottom when you do this, to avoid any mess from the dripping water.

Tightly tie the yogurt in the muslin cloth & let this contraption hang as shown.

Yogurt being strained overnight using Muslin cloth..

Make sure you have a bowl to collect all the dripping water. Leave this overnight to get strained completely.

Note: The amount of yogurt left behind after straining solely depends on the thickness of the yogurt used. Hence your servings depends on the amount left behind. Use a good quality yogurt to end up with more servings.

Next day, add the 1 tsp of warm milk to a pinch of Saffron & keep aside. Take the muslin cloth contraption down, open up the cloth as shown & transfer the contents into a clean dry bowl. Add sugar tbsp by tbsp.

Mix well. Taste & stop adding sugar when you reach the desired level of sugar. Now use a sieve & strain the sweetened hung yogurt as shown. This removes any lumps present. The resulting product is so silky that you will love its texture..

Now coarsely powder the cardamom seeds. Add the saffron milk & the powdered cardamom to the strained sweetened yogurt mixture & mix well till well combined. The colour of the Shrikhand changes to a light yellow. If you have added more than a pinch then the colour may be a deep yellow.

Cover the bowl & chill it in the refrigerator.

Garnishing: (optional)
Garnish with some powdered almonds/chopped pistachios & a few strands of saffron before serving.

Kesar Elaichi Shrikhand..

This pic was clicked when I still had some daylight left & also it was before chilling the Srikhand.. :) 

Serving Suggestions:
Serve chilled as mentioned earlier with or without the garnishing as a dessert or as an accompaniment with some hot fluffy puri/poori’s. Yummmy…!!

Kesar Elaichi Shrikhand..

If you like this recipe, then you may also like – Gaajar Halwa/ Carrot HalwaMadgane – one of the quintessential Konkani Payasam/sweet-dish….Charmure Undo.. A guest post by Manjula.. etc.


Mix Veg Couscous Biryani… Episode where the love for Biryani took over the love for Couscous…

Mix- Veg Couscous Biryani...

Couscous is a new-found love of mine.. I have quite a friends hooked on to it as well.. Biryani is another all-time-favourite.. Was wondering from a couple of days how would it taste if I fused these two together… I knew it would be a quick alternative to all the sudden biryani cravings. That’s what I just ended up doing last afternoon when I had this longing to eat some biryani.. (Just a week back I binged on some fish biryani.. Yes, both my kid bro & I can eat biryani for breakfast + lunch + dinner).

The best part is that I have found a perfect biryani powder mix here in the UK. All the while in India I never found something as good as this brand. Its called Shan. I have used their Biryani Masala, Bombay Special Biryani Masala; & both are yummy. They have loads of varieties in their Biryani masala’s. Wonder why I’m making this an endorsement for that brand??? Anyways, use your favourite brand of biryani masala for this dish.

Beauty of this version of the dish is that, unlike the time-consuming traditional biryani, this is ready in 15 mins.. :) Most Couscous packs that you get in the market are the pre-steamed & dried variety. These packs usually instruct you to use 1.5 parts of boiling water or stock to one part of couscous & before you know it, the couscous swells up & is ready to be separated using a fork. Since its made of wheat its a good substitute for rice.

Mix- Veg Couscous Biryani...

The biryani did turn out as yummy as the traditional one, just that it was there was a slight confusion in the brain.. Since it was used to chewing rice when it gets a whiff of biryani & the plate was filled with couscous grains.. So there was a slight mismatch between the sensory organs. But the tummy did feel good.. thats what matters right?

Ingredients: (Serves 2)    Preparation Time: 15 – 20 mins
Couscous – 1 cup, uncooked
Onions – 1 large, finely chopped
Garlic – 4 cloves, finely chopped
Ginger – a small piece
Cashews – 1 tbsp, chopped roughly
Green chilli – 1, slit
Biryani masala – 1.5 tbsp
Tomato – 1 medium-sized, chopped
Finely chopped Fresh Mint+ Coriander leaves – 3 tbsp
1.5 cups of mix-veggies of your choice, I used diced mushrooms, cubed potatoes, green peas & sweetcorn. You can add carrots, beans, cauliflower etc.

Tip: If you are planning to use potatoes, cauliflower, carrots or veggies that require more time to cook than the couscous then keep them in a bowl of boiling water with some salt, remember the bowl should be off heat, close this bowl with a plate; now start preparing the dish, so by the time you reach the stage where you need to add these veggies into the dish, they would have cooked at least halfway.

Yogurt – 1.5 tbsp
Cooking oil – 1 tbsp
Virgin Olive Oil – 1 tbsp
Salt to taste

Heat a pot, set the heat to medium. When hot add the cooking oil alone & when hot add the green chilli. Sauté it for a couple of seconds so that the oil absorbs the flavour & heat from the chilli. Next throw in the cashews, chopped ginger & garlic. Sauté them or just about 30 seconds. We do not want garlic to change colour. Next add the chopped onions & a pinch of salt. When the onions turn translucent add the biryani masala & mix well. Add 1.5 tbsp of the chopped coriander+mint leaves. Let the masala fry along with the onions for 2-3 minutes.

Next add the chopped tomatoes & the veggies (Do not forget any veggies kept in the bowl of boiling water, drain the water & add these as well). Add salt to taste. (Remember that the veggies from the bowl would have absorbed some salt already from the water). Add the yogurt. Mix well. Toss the veggies around for a minute. Now add 1.5 measures of water.

Tip: I usually boil the water in a kettle & keep it ready, rather than adding water at room temperature & waiting for it to come to a boil.

Adjust the seasoning & add the couscous. Simmer, close with a lid & let the couscous absorb the water. Cook the couscous as per your pack instructions. Usually all packs ask you to cook in simmer till all water is absorbed & then turn off the heat & let it stand for 5 minutes before you separate the grains using a fork. This is what I did.

Once done, you separate the grains using a fork. Add the virgin olive oil & mix as couscous tends to get dry.

Garnish with the rest of the chopped coriander+mint leaves.

Mix- Veg Couscous Biryani...

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot with a some salad & raita as accompaniment. For raita recipe’s check out – Spring Onion RaitaTempered Cucumber Raita – South Indian StyleBeetroot Raita etc.

Mix- Veg Couscous Biryani...

Hope you love this as much as K & I did.. :) Would love to read your comments.. Do add your comments when you try this out.. !

If you liked this, you may also like to check – Mix-Veg Couscous Upma…., Special Prawn BiryaniSweetcorn BiryaniMicrowave Peas Pilaf with Spring Onion Raita etc.

Yogurt Filled Strawberry Pots!

Yogurt Filled Strawberry Pots!

I read though for healthy tips.. While I was browsing through the website last evening.. I noticed this recipe to enjoy Strawberry’s.. I had strawberries in the fridge as it’s the season now.. ! Been feasting on them from the time the season was on.. ! :D

Fresh Strawberries...

I should say we ate the best strawberries ever when we were driving down to Cornwall last weekend.. there was slow moving traffic for a kilometre or so.. & I saw signboards on the side of the road that said.. “Buy fresh Strawberries handpicked straight from the farm..” & I had to buy some.. & then for another hour or so kept eating them.. :) They were the sweetest strawberries I had ever had..!

Anyway… this recipe can be enjoyed as a side during breakfast or as a dessert after a meal.. Fill the strawberry pots with your favourite yogurt or ice-cream.. sprinkle the top with corn flakes/nuts/raisins or any other topping of your choice & voila there you end up with something that looks pretty & tempting!

Tip: For you diet conscious people.. use fat-free greek yogurt.. flavour like Vanilla, coconut & banana go best.. but feel free to use any flavour you like…. & for those who don’t care about calories use full fat greek yogurt/slightly melted ice cream of your choice… Cool them if you wish to, before you serve them.

Yogurt Filled Strawberry Pots!

For those of you who have trouble making your kids eat fruits.. this maybe a good way.. Make it look pretty, i’m sure they will make their hands dirty! :D

Try one... :)

Ingredients: (Serves 2)    Preparation Time: 5-10 mins
Strawberries – 200 gms, larger the better, Sweeter the better too.. :)
Greek Yogurt/Thick yogurt/Ice-cream – 2 tbsp
Banana – 1/4 of a ripe banana
Tip: If you plan to use plain greek yogurt, you can add a few drops of vanilla essence & mash 1/4 of a banana into it; & stir in some sugar if required. You can add some honey instead of sugar too.
Toppings of your choice; I used some Wheatabix & almond flakes, raisins & cinnamon powder to sprinkle on top.

Mash up the banana in a bowl. Now add the yogurt to this & mix well.
Tip: To reduce the sugar added, I used very ripe banana’s.

Add sugar/honey if you used plain yogurt. Take each strawberry & de-core each of them carefully, as shown. Make sure you don’t end up puncturing the sides..

For the filling:
Option 1: Fill the strawberry pot with the banana+yogurt mixture. Chill if required.

Option 2: Else fill the pots with melted ice-cream of your choice. Place them in the chiller.

Top the filled strawberries with your choice of toppings… I added some wheat flakes from my pack of breakfast cereals, almond flakes & raisins.. finished it by sprinkling just a wee bit of cinnamon dust.. & we had them along with our breakfast.. :)

Yogurt Filled Strawberry Pots!

If you liked this recipe; you may also want to check out – Strawberry PancakesFresh Strawberry LassiBanana Cranberry Muffins….Banana Pancakes etc.

Aloo Tikki Chole Chaat…

Aloo Tikki Chole Chaat..

Another street food that all love.. another type of Chaat… available everywhere in streets of Delhi & other neighbouring cities. In other cities you will find it as well but not as much as you do in Delhi or the Northern cities of India.. But nevertheless.. if you have never had this before.. then its a pity.. Do try it..

Some street vendors also sell just the Aloo Tikki chaat.. without the chole.. ! That’s yummy as well.. But this one is a killer combo.. Aloo tikki & chole.. both known to produce a lot of gas in your stomach.. :D Spoiler Alert – be prepared to fart around a lot..!! Ok, I don’t want that spoiler alert from making you try this out… It’s way too tasty… :)

When you prepare chole the next time.. make a lot so that you can prepare this in the evening or have this as dinner :)) That’s what I did a couple of days back. Had chole for lunch & then made this for dinner.. :) So, it does not get too monotonous.. a its a pleasant change.

:) That's what Aloo Tikki Chole Chaat looks like…

There are so many flavours in this dish that it will take your taste buds to a whole new level. The different spices in the chole, the shallow fried potato patties (Aloo tikki), the raw red onions, the cold yogurt, the tangy & sweet- tamarind & date chutney..the hot green chutney.. the crunchy sev on top.. I know too many things right.. thats why its called chaat.. :)

K was after me from quite sometime to prepare this. So over the weekend when he was home I prepared this. I could not find to post the recipe earlier.

Ingredients: (Serves 4)      Preparation Time: 30 + minutes (Based on how many tikki’s you can fry at a time :))
Chole – 1 bowl, each serving would require about 5-6 tbsp
Potatoes – 4 large-sized
Cumin – 1/2 tsp, dry roasted, & powdered
Green chilli’s – 2, finely chopped
Black peppercorns – 4-5, crushed
Bread crumbs (optional)- 1-2 tbsp,
Red Onion – 1 medium-sized, finely chopped
Date & tamarind chutney – 3 tbsp
Green/Mint chutney – 3 tbsp
Yogurt – 6 tbsp
Chaat Masala – as required
Red chilli powder – as required
Sev – 4 tbsp
Coriander leaves – 3-4 sprigs, finely chopped
Cooking Oil – 3-4 tbsp/enough to shallow fry the tikki’s
Note: I tava fried & did not shallow fry as the tikki’s tend to absorb lots of oil.
Salt to taste

For the chole, check – Chole recipe.

Pressure cook/boil the potatoes in sufficient water.

Tip: While the potatoes are cooking, you can use this time to prepare the green chutney, tamarind & date chutney.

You can use store bought tamarind chutney if you want to. I prepared it fresh. For the tamarind chutney, soak 4 large dates, seeds removed & 1 lemon sized ball of tamarind, seeds removed in warm water for 10 minutes. Use just about enough water to cover them. Add just the softened dates & tamarind to a blender & grind this to a smooth paste. Add the water they were soaked in as required to help in grinding. Keep the rest of the water aside to dilute if the chutney is too thick.

Now once the potatoes are ready, drain out the water, cool then in cold water, drain the water away. Peel the skin off. Add the finely chopped green chilli’s, crushed black pepper , salt to taste & the dry roasted cumin powder to a mixing bowl. Add the boiled, peeled potatoes & mash the potatoes up. Make sure the other ingredients blend well into the mashed potatoes. Add the bread crumbs if the potatoes have absorbed a lot of water & the the mashed potato mix is soft & not firm enough to form patties. Close & keep aside for at least 10 minutes so that the potatoes absorb the flavours.

Heat a fry pan with a tbsp of oil or enough to shallow fry. Set heat to medium. While the oil is heating up, make 2-3 patties out of the mashed potatoes mixture. When the oil is hot, fry 2-3 the patties. Do not crowd the fry pan. Carefully turn then over when you see the bottom edges turning golden brown. Fry till they are golden brown on both sides. Take them out on a kitchen paper towel. Repeat this to prepare more tikki’s.


Now, heat the chole if its cold & then add 2 tikki’s to a serving plate. Press the centre of each of the tikki’s to mash them up a little as shown.

Mash the tikki's from the centre..

Now, add about 5-6 tbsp of chole on top.

Add Chole over the mashed up tikki's..

Add a tbsp of yogurt, 2-3 tsp of date & tamarind chutney, 1 tsp of green chutney (add more if you wish to), sprinkle some red chilli powder around.

Add yogurt, chutneys & red chilli powder...

Next sprinkle some chaat masala, a wee bit of salt too. Now, add some finely chopped onions. Next, sprinkle about a tbsp of sev. Finally garnish with some chopped coriander.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve as soon as it is prepared. Else the dish gets too soggy.Enjoy.. :)

Aloo Tikki Chole Chaat…

If you like this, you may also like – Chole Chaat…Chana Masala/ Khatte Punjabi Chane/ Tangy Chickpeas, Kala Chana Chaat/ Black Chickpeas ChaatChicken Frankie Roll, Chilly Kothu Parota/Bite sized Paratha pieces tossed in a hot & spicy sauce etc.

Chole Chaat…

Chole Chaat...

I had prepared some chole for dinner & then I guess I overestimated K’s & my dinner eating abilities.. it ended up being leftover. & I was in no mood to waste chole.. If you have been following my blog, you would know by now that I’m quite a fussy eater & I need to disguise food for myself when I’m not quite in the mood to eat something…I kept racking my brains on how can I make it more interesting.. We had picked some nylon sev.. these are fine chickpeas flour noodles.. which are yellow in colour & savoury, usually eaten as a snack or added over chaat’s.. the rest of the basic ingredients are always available in anyone’s pantry..! So I threw them all in & made myself a yummy chat as a snack for the evening with the leftover chole.. :)

Chole Chaat....

Chaat is a famous evening snack in India.. mostly available in small stalls on the streets around India. Everyone loves them.. you can’t escape from the heavenly aroma around these stalls that draw you towards them… Chaat has evolved quite a bit & there has been a lot of innovation around it as well, you may or may not have heard of Paani Poori (These are small crisp poori‘s filled with some tangy & spicy water, may or may not have some sprouts or potato filling.. Once done place the entire poori in your mouth..don’t ever try to take a bite out of them.. you will end up spilling all the water over yourself.. its yummy.. ).. by innovation I meant Vodka paani poori, Yes instead of the usual spiced up water vodka is used.. never tried it though.. but heard its wonderful.. :D I’m making my mouth water now.. I can’t really make paani poori here because the ready poori packs that are available aren’t fresh & crisp & every packet has half of them already broken… I need to learn to try & make the poori’s at home.. It’s on my to-do list… I have become a little lazy after returning from my holiday..! I need to something about this laziness..

Anyways this recipe is very quick.. the stalls usually add a wee bit of green/mint chutney (click for the mint chutney recipe) & some sweet & tangy date & tamarind chutney to make it have a nice blend of all flavours to tingle your taste buds.. But I did not add any of these.. you could if you have it… Click here for the Chole recipe.

Ingredients: (Serves 2) Preparation Time: 5 minutes (Time to prepare the chole not included)
Chole – 1 bowl
Red onion – 1 small-sized, finely chopped
Tomato – 1 small-sized, finely chopped
Coriander leaves – 3-4 sprigs, finely chopped
Sev – 2 tbsp
Yogurt – 2 tbsp
Red Chilli powder- a pinch
Chaat masala – a pinch
Mint Chutney – 1 tsp, I did not use this as I did not have this ready
Date & Tamarind chutney – 2 tsp, I did not use this as I did not have this ready
Lemon juice – 1 tbsp, freshly squeezed
Salt to taste

Some of the ingredients...

Take 2 serving plates or bowls. Add 7-8 tbsp of hot Chole along with some curry into each plate. Add a tbsp of yogurt over the top on each plate. If you plan to add some green chutney & date & tamarind chutney add half a tsp on each plate. Next throw in some chopped red onions & tomatoes. Next sprinkle some red chilli powder & chaat masala. Squeeze/add some lemon juice, sprinkle some salt to taste. Finally garnish with some sev & coriander leaves as shown.

Chole Chaat...

Dig in :). You could give the whole dish a mix before if you wish to, so that all the flavours mix well.. :)

If you liked this recipe you may also like – Chana Masala/ Khatte Punjabi Chane/ Tangy Chickpeas, Kala Chana Chaat/ Black Chickpeas Chaat, Egg Pakodi Chaat, Chilly Kothu Parota/Bite sized Paratha pieces tossed in a hot & spicy sauce etc.

Vendekka Moor Kolumbu/Lady’s Finger in a spiced yogurt curry..

Vendekka Moor Kolumbu...

Had a good start to my day today.. When I checked my emails in the morning I saw that had awarded my Chicken Frankie Roll recipe a recipe of the day award. This is one of my first recognitions for my recipe/blog. Felt elated. :D & I reached 700 likes for my Keli Paan Facebook page. :) What more could I ask for in one single day.. ;)

I’m still waiting for my new memory card to be delivered. This recipe is from my reserve, for those days when I do not find time for some cooking. :)

This dish brings fond memories of home sweet home… A truly Tamilian recipe.. You can say its very close to the North Indian Kadi because of the colour, texture & yogurt added.. but then it’s slightly different in taste.

Mum used to prepare this often using Ash gourd, but unfortunately in this part of the world I can’t seem to find Ash Gourd.. I missed eating this so much that I asked my mum to help me substitute ash gourd with some other vegetable.. She suggested I use Lady’s finger & K said he has had this dish before with lady’s finger & it tastes good. So had to make do with Lady’s finger. Since I was used to eating this dish with ash gourd, I was a little hesitant in preparing it with lady’s finger, but.. it was equally yummy.. :))

Vendekka Moor Kolumbu

Vendekka is lady’s finger in Tamil & moor is buttermilk. But you generally add yogurt instead of buttermilk to prepare this dish, else the curry gets too runny. This dish is a little sour because of the curd added. The flavours of garlic, cumin, curry leaves make it lip smacking & finger licking… Best eaten with rice. Bengal gram is used to add some thickness to the curry. Make sure you use tender lady’s finger for the dish. The green of the lady’s finger & the yellow of the curry make it a visual treat as well..

There is a similar curry prepared in Kerala called Moor Curry.. That is more runny since you use buttermilk for the recipe. Will post the recipe soon.. :)

Ingredients: (Serves 4)      Preparation Time: 20 mins
Lady’s Finger/ Bhindi/ Okra – 200 gms, washed, stem removed & cut into 1.5 inch pieces, or cut each medium-sized lades finger into 3-4 pieces.
Tip: Remove to wash the Lady’s finger before you cut them. Do not cut & then wash them as they get gooey.
Turmeric powder – a pinch
Curry Leaves – 2 sprigs, roughly about 10-12 leaves
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Cumin Seeds – 1/2 tsp
yogurt – 5-6 tbsp beaten well so that there are no lumps, you can add more if required
Cooking oil – 1 tsp
Salt to taste

For the Paste:
Coconut – freshly grated, 2 cups, or approximately 3/4 of a medium-sized coconut, grated
Roasted Bengal gram/Pottu kadalai – 2 tbsp
Green Chilli’s – 4 -5, as per your taste. Remember you would be adding some yogurt in the end which will reduce the heat.
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Garlic (optional) – 1 medium-sized clove, peeled & roughly chopped
Onions – 1 small, roughly chopped

Bring about half a litre of water to a boil. Add some salt to taste & add the cut lady’s finger pieces. Cook the lady’s finger till its 80% done.

Some washed lady's finger..

Meanwhile grind together all the ingredients mentioned for the paste together in a blender. Make as smooth a paste as you can.

The freshly ground paste...

Keep aside.

80% cooked lady's finger...

Once the lady’s finger is cooked 80%, add the freshly ground paste, turmeric powder to the lady’s finger & let the mixture cook again till it boils n the raw flavours of the ingredients used in the paste fade away.. Check salt & adjust. Reduce heat to low heat & add the beaten yogurt. Mix well & turn the heat off.

Tip: Do not heat this curry after you add the yogurt. Also if you have leftovers just serve this with some hot steamed rice instead of heating the curry.

Simultaneously heat the oil in a tempering vessel or a fry pan set to medium heat.. When the oil is hot add the mustard seeds & let it splutter for about 40s to a minute. Reduce heat to low,add the Cumin seeds, but make sure they don’t turn black, fry them till they are brown. Turn off the heat, add the curry leaves & transfer the tempering to the curry. Mix well & serve.

Moor Kolumbu tempered & ready to be served ..

Tip: You can also add 1-2 dried red chilli’s when you prepare the tempering, just for the aesthetics.. :) I did not add them.

Garnish with additional curry leaves if required.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot with some steamed rice.

Vendekka Moor Kolumbu...

Serve some vegetable dish & papad as a side dish. For side dish ideas you can check – Easy Potato fry/ Aloo fryBeans Telasan/ Stir fried beans – Konkani style, Taro/Arbi/Alva Manda Masala Stir Fry, Soyee Bhajjile Chana Ghashi/Black chickpeas in sautéed coconut paste curry.. etc.

Tempered Cucumber Raita – South Indian Style

Tempered Cucumber Raita - South Indian Style

Funny weather here in Glasgow from a couple of days. The sun plays hide & seek in between snow.. I was listening to “CCR – Have you ever seen the rain” & I burst out laughing thinking aloud.. “If the lyricist would have visited Glasgow ever, he would have changed the lyrics to snow instead of rain ;)..”

This is a very aromatic & flavourful raita. The crunchy tempered dal, mustard seeds you get to bite in between makes this raita wonderful. :) The aroma that fills in your kitchen when you prepare the tempering is amazing. Wonderful for the summers when you have different varieties of cucumbers available (This is in India :)).

There are three different types of cucumbers cultivated – Slicing, Pickling & burpless, according to Wiki.

This goes as an accompaniment with just about any South Indian Flavoured rice. To name a few – Tomato Rice, Lemon Rice, Arasi Parappu Saadam etc. My MIL used to prepare this often & my FIL can eat this as a snack.

Cucumber is known to have a cooling effect. As a kid I often developed a common cold if I ate too much.

P.S: Photos courtesy my phone.. :( Miss using my Camera..

Ingredients: (Serves 2)    Preparation Time: 10 mins
Cucumber – 1/4 of a large cucumber
Plain yogurt – 200 ml
Milk – 30 ml
Split black dal/Urad Dal – 1/4 tsp
Mustard Seeds – 1/4 tsp
Asafoetida – just a small pinch
Dried Red chilli’s – 1, torn roughly
Curry leaves – 4-5, torn roughly
Cooking oil – 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste

In a bowl whisk the yogurt & milk together. Grate the cucumber piece & add this to the yogurt-milk mixture. Add salt to taste. Mix well, keep aside.

Add the grated cucumber to the yogurt-milk mixture..

Tip: If you plan to serve this at a later point of time add salt just before you serve else the water that the cucumber lets out will make the raita runny.

Meanwhile heat oil in a tempering vessel/fry pan. Add mustard seeds when the oil is hot. Make sure heat is set to medium. Let the mustard seeds splutter for at least 20 seconds. Now, add the dried red chilli. Now add the asafoetida. Immediately add the urad dal & fry. Do not let the urad dal turn black, when they begin to turn a brown, turn off the heat & add the curry leaves. Mix well & add this to the cucumber-milk-yougurt mixture.

If you wish to add some chopped coriander leaves.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve with any South Indian flavoured rice dish as an accompaniment.

Tempered Cucumber Raita - South Indian Style

Or snack on it, just as is. :)

If you liked this recipe you may also like – Beetroot RaitaSpring Onion RaitaTzatzikiTeekha Meeta Yogurt dip etc.

Pineapple & Blueberry Yogurt Smoothie

Pineapple & Blueberry yogurt smoothie...

A sad thing happened this morning. I was done clicking pics for this recipe & while I was transferring the pics to my laptop… boom.. my memory card just gave up.. luckily I had 3-4 photos which managed to get copied on to my hard disk. ;) But the sad part now is till my new card arrives I cannot click pictures.. & post new recipe’s.. boohoo.. feel so tied up… I will have to make do with my reserve collection..

Pineapple & Blueberry yogurt smoothie...

Its spring & summer in many parts of the world.. what healthier ways to fight the summers than including some yummy smoothies in your diet.. Hence here you go.. a simple yet yummy smoothie…

Tip: I did not add sugar as the fruits were sweet enough & the honey added a little sweet too. If you have sour tasting pineapple & blueberries then do add some..

Ingredients: (Serves 1) Preparation Time: 5 mins
Pineapple – 3 inch slices, skin removed
Plain Yogurt – 3 tbsp
Blueberries – 15 – 20
Honey – 1 tsp

In a blender add all the ingredients & blend well.

Serving Suggestions:
Fridge it & serve chilled or serve with some ice cubes.

Pineapple & Blueberry yogurt smoothie...

If you like this.. you may also want to try – Tangy, herbed fruit punchFresh Strawberry Lassi, more coming soon.. :)


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