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Street Food

Ambuli/Raw Mango Pachhodi or rather an instant raw mango pickle…

Ambuli Pachhodi...

All that I can remember when I eat this is secretly stashing my lunch-bag packed for school with some raw mangoes that fell from our Mango tree during the season. We had two lovely, huge Mango trees at home. “HAD” Sad but true, one very close to the gate & it fell one nasty stormy night blocking the road in front of out house & we lost electricity as it brought down the electricity pole along with it. We had to sit in darkness for almost for a couple of days till the power lines were restored. Sadly the other one had to be cut down 4-5 yrs after the first one fell because of old age.

Ambuli/Raw Mango Pachhodi or rather an instant raw mango pickle

I went to school with a bunch of other kids on an auto-rickshaw. Singing, eating & chattering all the way. Was so much of fun. We were a bunch belonging to different classes. I lived like 10 km away from school. But thoroughly enjoyed jumping into the auto rickshaw & having a ball. 🙂 Yes, coming back to my stash of raw mangoes in the lunch bag, as few of my classmates went home for lunch I would hand it over to them & ask them to mix it up with the required ingredients to prepare this or just ask them to chop it up into wedges & pack some salt & red chilli powder & pack it back to class. Afternoon sessions were then fun… the box with the raw mangoes & the masala were passed around carefully during class & we would devour all of it till we licked our fingers clean. I was allowed to eat this only once in a while as an overdose can make you sick.. Oh such fun days those were, first the secret picking from the ground since mum wouldn’t approve eating too much of it, she would let me carry some approvingly maybe once a fortnight, but then the girls in class would demand for some almost every couple of days :)).

Ambuli/Raw Mango Pachhodi...

This is something that takes me down memory lane.. such warm & fond memories :))) This is easily available in small carts in and around Mangalore & small towns around Mangalore when it is the mango season. It is a very popular snack loved by people from all age groups. Many refer to this recipe as an instant mango pickle. It tastes just like a pickle because it has all the similar flavours other than excess oil & salt.

Ingredients: (Serves 2)        Preparation Time: 5 mins
Raw Mango – Use the variety you like, I always preferred my home-grown variety but now I usually use Totapuri variety.
Tip: Use a variety that isn’t too sour. Raw mangoes which are just beginning to ripen also taste good as they add a lovely sweetness to the sour & the hot recipe.
Asafoetida – a pinch
Red chilli powder – 1/2 tsp, adjust according to you taste
Turmeric powder – a pinch
Sambar powder – 1/2 tsp
Coconut oil – 1 tsp, adds an authentic touch, if you can’t consume coconut oil then add some extra virgin olive oil
Salt to taste

Method:
You can grate or finely chop the raw mangoes. Throw away the kernel & the fibrous covering around the kernel. Throw the chopped or grated raw mango into a bowl, add all the spice powders, asafoetida, salt & oil. Give contents of the bowl a good mix. Dig in to the bowl to check & adjust the salt & spice. That is it your done.. 🙂

If you have some patience, cover the bowl & let the raw mango pieces absorb the salt & other flavours.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve as is, as a side or as a snack.

Ambuli Pachhodi...


My take on the famous Lahsun/Garlic Chutney – Maharashtrian style

Lahsun/Garlic Chutney...

Being married to a Bangalorean, rather an Iyengar from Karnataka implies that your pantry will never run short of coconuts. You may wonder what the possible connection is. No, Iyengar’s don’t own coconut farms :P, they keep distributing coconuts for every Puja/Wedding/function they conduct. When you are just two in the house & you have surplus supply of coconuts, you most certainly end up with Copra or dried coconut (When the water content inside the coconut dries away leaving behind a dry shrunk coconut called Copra).Extract oil out of it like my grandmother did or use it up in making chutney pudi or rather the chutney powder as it is popularly known. The ingredients are mostly similar to a normal wet chutney that we prepare as an accompaniment to most South Indian breakfast dishes, just that instead of freshly grated coconut, we use dry coconut. The use of dried coconut helps in preserving this chutney for a longer time when compared to the staple wet chutney prepared.

Lahsun/Garlic Chutney...

My grandmother made yummy curry leaf chutney pudi, once my stash of this chutney powder gets done with I’ll make some of that too :). As many who follow my blog already know that I’m a sucker for garlic, I couldn’t think further than my all time favourite Lahsun (Garlic in Hindi) or Garlic Chutney. This is a staple in most Maharashtrian houses. If you are a street food lover & you have had a chance to eat the all time favourite Maharashtrian Vada Pav then you would have definitely tasted this chutney with it. Yes, this is the very famous Lahsun ki chutney that is served with Vada Pav. Who does not love a couple of Vada Pav as a snack. Friends from Bombay a.k.a Mumbai tell me that even at 3 am you will be able to pick up some Vada pav for a snack. A super loved street food from the streets of Mumbai is Vada Pav, followed by Pav Bhaji. If you were looking for that very chutney recipe which is served with Vada Pav then look no further :), you have found the right recipe.

This chutney has a shelf life of about 15 days if stored as is but, you can make it last longer by drying the chutney in the sun so that any moisture from some of the ingredients used dries away. But its a simple recipe. So I suggest you follow the measures I have mentioned below & prepare more when you have used up this batch :). If you prepare in large batches the peanuts used in this chutney may turn rancid & you may have to throw it all away ..

My take on the famous Lahsun/Garlic Chutney - Maharashtrian style

Eat this chutney with – Chapati’s, add it in butter sandwiches, with Vada Pav of course, spread it on the dosa while preparing Masala dosa, add s spoon of ghee/clarified butter to a tbsp of the chutney powder & eat it with some hot idli’s. Well I can snack on this chutney.. don’t need anything to go with it.

Ingredients: (Serves 12 – 15)             Preparation Time: 30 mins
Garlic – 12-14 medium-sized cloves, peeled
Dried red chilli’s – 5 whole medium spicy variety, stalk off
Sesame Seeds – 1 tbsp
Raw groundnuts – 1.5 tbsp
Coriander seeds – 1-1.5 tbsp,use 1.5 if you like your chutney with extra coriander flavour
Red Chilli powder – 1 tsp (For the colour, use more if you want the chutney to be hot)
Grated Copra/ Dried coconut – 1 cup
Tamarind – 1/2 of a marble shaped ball, Throw away any seeds present
Odourless Cooking oil – 1/2 tsp, I used rice bran oil
Salt to taste

Method:
All you need is a deep bottom fry pan & a mixer apart from the ingredients mentioned of course. You may use a non-stick fry pan if you have else an aluminium kadai is just fine.

Heat the cooking oil in the fry pan. Set heat to low once the oil heats up. Throw in 10 of the garlic cloves & reserve the rest. Fry the garlic till it begins to turn a slightly golden. Take them off heat & transfer to a plate or the mixer jar. Let it cool. My twist to the chutney is not to oil roast all the garlic cloves & add a few raw ones to enhance the flavour & make the chutney powder more fragrant.

Note: If you do not like the chutney to have a strong garlic flavour then oil roast all the cloves.
Now return the fry pan to heat. Maintain heat at low & fry the dried red chilli’s till they turn plump. Do not let them turn black. Keep tossing them continuously. Take them off heat & transfer to the plate or the mixer jar & allow it to cool.

Next add 1 tbsp of coriander seeds & return the pan to low heat & fry the seeds till you can begin to change colour & the aroma of the seeds fills the air. Again toss them around continuously because you don’t want them to burn. Transfer to the plate or the mixer jar & let it cool.

Similarly fry the sesame seeds till they begin to change colour & start popping. Transfer to the plate or the mixer jar & let it cool.

Lastly fry the grated Copra/dry coconut till it starts to change in colour. Do not let it burn. Toss it around continuously. Take off the kadai from heat and let the roasted Copra cool down to room temperature.

Once all the roasted ingredients have cooled down to room temperature, transfer them to the mixer jar & add the tamarind piece along with red chilli powder, the leftover garlic cloves & some salt to taste. Blend all the ingredients into a coarse powder, or finer if you like it that way.

Check for salt & adjust if required.

Lahsun/Garlic Chutney - Maharashtrian style

Note: Since we add some tamarind & a few raw garlic cloves while we blend, the chutney powder will have some small lumps, I transfer the chutney powder to a tray and dry it under the sun for a good hour or so. This helps to remove the moisture & helps preserve the chutney powder longer. If you plan to do the same then, keep mixing the chutney powder so that it helps in even drying.

Once ready, transfer the chutney powder to an air-tight container & enjoy while it lasts.

Serving Suggestions:
Get your bread, alu bonda ready & serve this chutney with this famous Indian burger – Vada Pav.

Lahsun/Garlic Chutney...

Else, serve with just about anything that you like. I have mentioned a few accompaniments in the beginning of this post.

 


Steamed Momos/dumplings with an aromatic Veggie filling…

Steamed Momos/dumplings with an aromatic Veggie filling…

Allison from the food blog – Spontaneous Tomato had a post on Nepali momo’s a while back. I’m a sucker for dumplings. I can eat them for breakfast, lunch, snack & dinner. Sigh no one serves dumplings for breakfast in restaurants :(. I have been on the quest to find that perfect recipe to prepare the wrappers for the momo’s at home from a while now. I have tried at least half a dozen recipes out but never could I master the art of preparing the wrappers just like how they are supposed to be. When Allison posted her recipe, I was way too tempted to try it out because her method was different from the way I have ended up making wrappers earlier. The previous recipe’s I tried always left me with thick wrappers, the wrappers themselves filled me up that I did not prefer to eat more than a couple of them.. :(.

I’m sure no one needs an introduction to this dish. If you do, then I have to say Oh My Goodness, you have clearly missed something wonderful all these years of your existence..! Really???….. what were you busy with???? Just like many other quick eats you can grab from street stalls (Pani Puri or other chat’s, sweet corn, Frankie’s, sandwiches etc.), you find small stalls for steamed momo’s in the streets of most popular cities in India. They serve yummy dumplings too. But indulge only if your tummy works well with street food.

It has been in the back of my mind. I even promised Allison that I would give her recipe a try. She has a lovely blog with truckloads of recipe’s. She made a wonderful tomato based dip for her recipe. I opted to create a soy-based sauce for my dumplings. I halved her recipe & made some changes to suit my taste buds. You can check her recipe out at  her blog – recipe link.  I can’t thank her enough for helping me find my prefect dumpling wrapper making method. 🙂 

You will see more pics for this recipe post the next time I make them. For now you have to do with pics clicked via my phone. I just have a couple of pics.

Don’t the dumplings look so glossy & lovely?? Rather, they look perfect don’t they :D. So inviting & they give you a perfect sneak peek into their contents??? You will say so too and never look at ordering a plate of momo’s or dumplings the next time you visit your fav haunt for them & begin trying out other starter options :D. I’ll give myself a pat on my shoulder since I finally mastered it.. :D. The gloss is not from oil.. it just comes out naturally.. Again another shocker.. isn’t it?? these are oil free too.. ! The only draw-back is that they are made of All purpose flour or maida. Oh well.. you can’t have such yummy tasting food without there being a single flaw in it can you…?? Wish wheat could have been a more accommodating flour.. Let us start with our stairway to Heaven.. 😉

Ingredients for the wrappers : (Makes 25 – 30) Preparation Time: 60 mins (Excludes time for the dough resting)
All purpose flour/Maida – 1 + 1 cup,
Hot steaming water – 3/4 cup
Salt – 1/4 tsp

Method:
Take a heat proof mixing bowl. Add 1 cup of the flour to the bowl. Add 1/4 salt & whisk to mix the salt & flour well. Make a well in between & add the hot water. Using a spatula, mix the water & the flour together.

Note: Remember the water is hot, do not add your hand in.

Once the dough gets lumpy add the other cup of flour. Continue mixing with the spatula. Try to handle the dough with your hand once it has cooled down & it is warm enough to be handled by hand.

Lightly flour your counter & transfer the dough over the floured surface. Knead your dough to a smooth ball. Say, takes about 4-5 minutes. Add flour little by little if required.

Let the dough rest in a clean bowl, cover the bowl with a wet cloth to prevent the dough from drying up. Let the dough rest for at least an hour.

After an hour, make small marble or gooseberry sized balls out of the dough. Lightly flour your counter & roll the small balls into round shaped flat breads. Roll it as thin as possible.

Now fill the centre with your favourite kind of stuffing with minced meat, veggies or a mix of both. I used a veggie mix. Continue reading for my mix-veg filling.

Mix-Veggie filling for Momo’s/Dumplings:
Ingredients: (Fills 25-30 dumplings) Time: 10-15 mins
Cabbage leaves – 4-5 medium-sized leaves
Shallots – 15, peeled Note: Use a medium-sized red onion if you do not have shallots, roughly chop it into cubes.
Garlic – 5 cloves
Ginger – 1 inch piece
Tip: Please do not use store-bought Ginger-Garlic paste as a substitute for fresh ginger & garlic for this recipe. You might as well give up trying this recipe out if you only have store-bought paste with you.
Coriander leaves – 5-6 fresh sprigs, with stalk
Spring onions – 2 whole with the with the greens, peel the onion bulb & roughly chop them
Carrot – 1 medium-sized, peeled & cut into cubes
Green Chilli’s – 2 medium-sized, stalk removed
Mushrooms (optional) – 5-6, washed & drained. I skipped using mushrooms as I did not have any.
Grated Cheddar Cheese (optional) – If you love your dumplings with cheese, go ahead, mix about a cup of grated cheese to your veggie-mix
Salt to taste

For the meat variant: If you wish to add some meat, then leave out the carrot, mushrooms out of the veggie mix & add some pre-cooked mince of your favourite meat to the rest of the ingredients once they are chopped in a food processor.

Method:
Throw all these ingredients mentioned, other than the salt into a food processor & finely chop this ingredients together. Transfer the chopped ingredients into a bowl, season with salt. Check if you want to add a wee bit crushed black pepper.

Note: Do not add salt if you don’t plan to begin making the dumplings right away. The salt releases the water from the veggies & will make it soggy. So, add salt just about 5 minutes before you begin rolling the dough to make small circular dics.

I was not planning to post this recipe this soon on the blog, so I did not click pictures of the making. 😦 I ended up posting some pics clicked via my phone on Instagram & FaceBook & I had requests to post the recipe. So bear with me till I make this dish again for more detailed pics.

Let us continue with adding the filling to the rolled flour discs. Place a 2 tsp or lesser amount of the prepared filling in the centre of the disc. (The quantity of the filling used depends on how big/small a disc you have rolled). Now slowly bring together the edges together just like a money bag or in other traditional momo/dumpling shapes like I have.

Yes, no oil at all. Isn’t that just brilliant. So you can indulge, it is really ok if you gobble up some all-purpose flour covered steamed vegetable goodness.

I used a traditional dumpling steamer. So I did not need to oil it. If you are using a stainless steel steamer, you may need to grease it before you place your momo/dumplings in it to cook.

Being about a litre of water to a boil, simmer & place you steamer or top. Make sure that your steamer does not touch the water. So choose your vessel carefully. Similar to any double boiling method you have used.

Steaming momo's...

Prepare just about 4-5 dumplings per batch (Unless you have a steamer that is used to feed giants.. I’m kidding I’m sure you won’t own a steamer enough to feed 4 people at the same time unless you run a restaurant. :D). Never crowd the steamer. We need to let the steam circulate well to help cook the dumplings. Steam each batch for about 8-10 minutes or till the dumplings come off the base of the steamer easily (Use a silicone spatula to turn to check if they are done), usually the top turns translucent letting you see whats filled when they are ready. Again only if you have rolled the discs real thin will the wrapper turn translucent when ready.

Note: 1. Don’t use your hand to pick the dumplings out if the steamer is still on the vessel producing the steam, you may burn yourself. 2. Also keep checking on the water & re-filling it, if all the water evaporates, then the vessel will start imparting a burnt flavour to the momo’s.

Repeat the same process to prepare & steam more dumplings.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot with your favourite dip.

Steamed Momos/dumplings with an aromatic Veggie filling…

A friend introduced me to eating my dumplings with soy sauce. I loved that variant so much that I wanted to create a lovely soy based dip to accompany my dumplings. Click the link for my soy-based dip recipe.

If you like this recipe, then you may also like – Chicken Frankie RollAloo Tikki Chole Chaat…Chole Chaat…Egg Pakodi ChaatGreek Souvlaki wrap with salad & tzatziki 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.. 😀 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

Method:
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.

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.. 😀 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...

Method:
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.


Onion/Kanda/Piyav/Eerulli Bajji/Pakoda’s/Bajo

Onion/Kanda/Piyav/Eerulli Bajji/Pakoda's/Bajo

Onion bajji’s are a favourite snack with chai all over India. If you have had a chance to attend any evening gathering that takes place among Indian communities anywhere in the world, you may have noticed these being served. You can never go wrong serving onion bajji’s. They turn yummy & go well with all kinds of dips.I like them just as is. The ingredients are very easily available & always present in most pantries.

Piyav is onion in Konkani, Kanda is onion in Marathi, Eerulli is onion in Kannada & likewise Pakoda’s in Konkani are called Bajo & Bajji is a word used in Kannada. Well does it matter what they are called as long as you can make these yummy pakoda’s.. ?? 😉

The joy of having some hot onion pakoda’s with hot chai during the rains cannot be described in words. Ask most Indians what they would crave for the most when it rains.. the answer would be ” Pakoda & chai”…

Onion Pakoda's...

There are many ways of preparing these pakoda’s. Some make it with just the basic ingredients – Gram flour, salt, red chilli powder & cut onions. I have my way, I add garlic, cumin, a pinch of asafoetida & coriander leaves along with the basic ingredients I mentioned above. I love the flavour imparted by these additional ingredients I use. You may also add some chopped mint leaves. I did not add mint leaves as I was serving these pakoda’s with Coriander, mint chutney.

Ingredients: (Serves 4)       Preparation Time: 15-20 mins
Onion – 1 large, cut lengthwise & then cut into 2, separate pieces from each layer as keep aside
Garlic – 1 large clove
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Gram flour/besan – 3/4 cup
Red chilli powder – 1/4 tsp or more depending on how hot the chilli powder you use is
Coriander leaves – 2-3 sprigs, finely chopped
Oil – enough to deep fry the pakoda’s
Salt to taste

Some of the ingredients..

Method:
Mince the garlic & the cumin seeds together using a pestle. Keep aside.

Pound the garlic & cumin together into a paste..

Add all the onion strands to a mixing bowl. Add salt, the garlic & cumin mince, red chilli powder, asafoetida & chopped coriander leaves & mix well. Keep this aside for 2-3 minutes. The onions let out some water.

Add about 50 ml water to the bowl/mortar you used to mince garlic & cumin. We will use this aromatic water to coat the gram flour with the onions.
Sift the gram flour if it has too many lumps. Now add about 1/2 cup of gram flour to the onion mixture. Mix well.

Mix all the ingredients together...

Meanwhile begin to heat oil required to deep fry the pakoda’s.

While the oil is heating up. Add the aromatic water little by little to the onion mixture. The batter mix should neither be too dry nor too watery. The onion strands should be coated well & you should be able to able to hold about 15 strands together firmly to form small fritters.

Hold small portions of the mixture together to form round or oval shapes..

Check if the oil is heated well enough. Make sure the heat is set to medium. Drop these pakoda’s one by one into the hot oil carefully. If the strands remain together you have achieved the correct consistency with the batter. If they begin to move away then the batter is too runny or dry. Fix this by adding more onion or more water. Do not crowd the vessel. let there be space for the oil to move around & cook the pakoda’s. I was able to fry about
16 pakoda’s in total (8 in each batch) from the batter I prepared.

Once the pakoda’s are light brown on the bottom side turn them over & fry the other side. Take them out of the oil when they turn golden brown on both sides. Transfer them on to a kitchen paper towel & drain out the excess oil.

Garnishing: (optional)
You can spinkle of chaat masala on top if you wish to.

Pakoda's drained on a kitchen towel & ready to be served..

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot with some green chutney by the side or with your favourite dip.

Onion/Kanda/Piyav/Eerulli Bajji/Pakoda's/Bajo

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Chilly Kothu Parota/Bite sized Paratha pieces tossed in a hot & spicy sauce

Chilly Kothu Parota/Bite sized Paratha pieces tossed in a hot & spicy sauce

Ever thought of cutting up some paratha’s into bite sized pieces and stir frying or tossing them in some spicy sauce & having it as a snack? Who so ever stumbled upon this idea was a big time foodie for sure. This snack is just so brilliant.. its quick, hot & spicy.. has some veggies.. you can make is tangy by squeezing some lemon juice which blends perfectly to add a zing or kill the extra spice & to top it all its a tummy filler for sure..

A bite of the Chilly Kothu Parota..

This snack is very famous in Tamil Nadu, a state in the southern part of India. This is available in all small & big restaurants around Tamil Nadu in the evenings., You would also find small stalls selling them.. The aroma of the herbs & the spices added is heavenly.. You also get variants of the same with egg, chicken or mutton.

I had visited a restaurant in Glasgow recently with a some friends & found this on the menu & one of my friends ordered this dish. It was so damn tasty that I had to add it to my to do list :D. I ended up preparing this today as my evening snack..

Ingredients: (Serves 1)        Preparation Time: 15 mins
Red onion – 1, small/medium-sized, chopped as shown
Frozen/ fresh paratha’s – 2
Ginger – a small piece, finely chopped
Garlic – 1-2 cloves, finely chopped
Green chilli’s – 2-3 as per your taste, chopped finely & divided into 2 equal portions
Red chilli powder – 1/4 tsp
Sambar powder – 1/2 tsp
Cumin Seeds – 1/4 tsp
Fennel Seeds – 1/4-1/2 tsp, crushed using a pestle
Coriander leaves – 2-3 sprigs, finely chopped
Curry leaves – 2 sprigs, roughly about 10-12 leaves, torn roughly
Lemon juice – 1 tsp (optional)
Chilly Tomato sauce – 1.5 tbsp
Peppers – 1 cup, chopped as shown
Cooking oil – 1.5-2 tbsp
Salt to taste

Some of the ingredients..

Method:
Heat a fry pan & fry the paratha’s. I used frozen paratha’s. Make sure the paratha’s are slightly crispy. Take off the heat & cut them into bite size pieces as shown.

Now heat the oil in the fry pan. Set the heat to medium. Make sure the oil is hot, only then add the cumin seeds & lift the pan off the heat, you don’t want to burn them. Next add ginger, garlic & one portion of the green chilli’s. Sauté them for a few seconds, again lift the fry pan off the heat if required. The garlic needs to still look white/cream in colour. Immediately add the onions & the curry leaves, toss them around. Add salt, red chilli powder, sambar powder & mix well. Now add the tomato sauce & mix well. Next add the bite-size pieces of the paratha’s. keep frying them till they turn brownish & get a little crispy as shown.

Now add the crushed fennel seeds & mix well. Turn the heat off.

Garnishing:
Garnish with the chopped peppers, green chilli’s, coriander leaves. You may throw in some extra curry leaves for some added flavour. You may squeeze some lemon juice too, this will also help if the dish is too hot for your taste.

Chilly Kothu Parota/Bite sized Paratha pieces tossed in a hot & spicy sauce

Serving Suggestions:
Serve hot as an evening snack with some tea or coffee.

Chilly Kothu Parota/Bite sized Paratha pieces tossed in a hot & spicy sauce...

Notes:
1. You can skip using Chilli tomato sauce & add fresh tomato puree with a pinch of sugar & some extra red chilli powder instead.
2. If you want to make this as a snack for your kids then you can skip the red chilli powder & the green chilli’s & add some regular tomato ketchup.

For more quick snacks check – Egg Stumbler/ Spicy scrambled eggs tossed with bite size bread pieces, Bun Masala / Scrambled Egg Burger, Egg Pakodi Chaat etc.


Chicken Frankie Roll

Chicken Frankie Roll...

If anyone of you read my previous post you would remember that I was talking about the food that we miss from back home. Frankie is another one of the street food that my friends & I were discussing about. If any of you have travelled to India you would have definitely tried one of these, else you surely did miss some yummy food. The next time you plan a trip to India do try them out. You should see stalls selling these on the streets of Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Delhi etc.

These rolls are available with a variety of fillings. The menu at any frankie stall would list at least 10 non-vegetarian & about 10 veg options. So this roll is basically made of an all-purpose flour paratha, topped will a plain fried egg, stuffed with a filling of your choice, throw in some thinly diced onions, sprinkle some chaat masala and squeeze some lime juice & garnish with some chopped cilantro or mint leaves. Roll this as you wrap any roll/wrap as tightly as possible and cover with silver foil & dig into your hot yummy roll.

Chicken Frankie Roll....

I used frozen paratha’s. You can make your own paratha’s/chapatis’ or even use tortilla’s. But I love using Paratha’s for the frankie. That’s how I have eaten them all along.

I also marinated the chicken with some Indian spice powders overnight. You can marinate it for a couple of hours if your short of time.

Ingredients: (Makes 3 rolls)     Preparation Time: 15-20 mins (Excludes the time for marination)
Chicken breast – 1 large skinless breast, Chopped into bite size pieces and marinated in
– pinch of salt
– 1/2 tsp lemon juice
– 1/8 tsp of coriander powder
– 1/8 tsp cumin powder
– a pinch of turmeric powder
– 1/8 tsp red chilli powder
Mix well and refrigerate for 2 hrs – overnight

Onions – 2 large, one finely chopped & the other finely diced
Garlic – 2 large cloves, finely chopped
Ginger – 1/2 inch piece, finely chopped, Note: If you plan to use the ready/store-bought ginger-garlic paste, use 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder – 1/4 tsp
Cumin powder – 1/4 tsp
Red chilli powder – 1/4 tsp
Turmeric powder – a pinch
Black pepper powder – 1/4 tsp, freshly ground
Mint Leaves – 8-10, finely chopped /Coriander leaves – 2-3 sprigs finely chopped
Cooking Oil – 1 tbsp + 1 tsp for the paratha’s
Eggs – 2 beaten well
Paratha’s – 3 medium-sized
Chaat masala – as per your taste
Lemon – 1 half, cut into wedges
Salt to taste

Method:
To prepare the chicken filling:
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a wok or a deep bottom fry pan set to medium heat. When the oil is hot, sauté the garlic for about 30 seconds. Next add the finely chopped onions only(the finely diced onions are for use later on) & as always a pinch of salt to help quicken the onion frying. When the onions turn translucent add the ginger pieces and sauté for about a minute. Next add the turmeric and the other spices – red chilli, cumin, coriander powders and fry. Do not let the powders burn. If the wok/fry pan is too hot reduce the heat to low.

Now add the marinated chicken pieces and fry for a couple of minutes. Add about 60 ml water. Add salt to taste. Mix well and close with a lid and let the chicken cook in medium heat for 5-6 minutes.

Open the wok or fry pan after 5-6 minutes, increase the heat so that if there is any water left that would evaporate and the pieces get fried a little. We do not want any water in the chicken. It should be dry else your roll will get soggy. Fry the chicken pieces in medium heat for another 4-5 minutes. The chicken should be done. Now before you turn off the heat, sprinkle the ground black pepper and mix well. Turn off the heat. Keep the filling aside.

The chicken filling for the frankie..

To ready the paratha:
Now heat a tawa or a pancake pan. Set it to medium heat. I used frozen paratha’s, you can use tortilla’s or prepare your fresh paratha’s. Add one paratha when the tawa is hot and let it cook to about 80% on both sides. Take it off the heat. Keep aside. Reduce the heat to low. Add some oil to the tawa, spread it out and add some of the beaten egg (remember you need to use 2 eggs for 3 paratha’s so add accordingly, if you want one whole egg in each roll, beat an egg each time and use). Spread the egg around the tawa well. Immediately add the paratha which was kept aside on top of the frying egg.

Add the paratha over the egg..

Press the paratha from the side facing you so that the paratha and the egg join together. In about a minutes time flip the paratha. After about 30 seconds transfer the paratha to a plate with the egg facing you.

Note: The egg is optional, you can double the egg or do without it.

Divide the chicken filling into 3 equal portions. Add one portion to the centre as shown. Add some onions,sprinkle chaat masala and some chopped mint/ coriander leaves and squeeze some lemon juice.

Roll it up tightly just like any wrap and cover with some silver food foil.

Repeat the same procedure to make the other 2 wraps.

Serving suggestions:
Serve hot as is or with some mint or coriander chutney by the side.:)

Chicken Frankie Roll...

In the same way you can prepare any veg filling with mushrooms, paneer or mix-veggies.

For Mushroom wrap recipe check – Mushroom Wraps. You may also like – Chilly Kothu Parota/Bite sized Paratha pieces tossed in a hot & spicy sauce.


Egg Stumbler/ Spicy scrambled eggs tossed with bite size bread pieces

Egg Stumbler/ Spicy scrambled eggs tossed with bite size bread pieces

As a kid, there were some surprises I got during dinner time. We would be waiting for dad to get back home to have dinner together & he would walk in surprising my brother & I with a take away of Egg Stumbler :). Sometimes he would get some Chicken sukka or Kori Rotti (Both famous Mangalorean chicken dishes.) I will soon be posting the recipe’s for these dishes as well.

Egg Stumbler/ Spicy scrambled eggs tossed with bite size bread pieces

There are small bakery’s or grocery shops in Mangalore which serve some fresh lemonade, cold almond milk popularly known as Badam Milk all to beat the hot sultry coastal weather. These shops would often serve bread omelette’s or Egg stumbler as snacks in the evenings. They would be packed after 6pm with people getting home from work stopping by for a quick snack or a take away. Mangalore being a small quiet town, all familiar faces around, these was the time people used to catch up on some everyday affairs, discuss cricket, the festivals or weddings that were coming up, met new people or made new friends etc.

Egg stumbler is quite scrumptious. The bread pieces also get coated well with the egg and the spices and get a little soft. The coriander leaves add a nice flavour & colour to this snack.

Some of my husband’s cousins are egg lovers. So when people get together they love to have some

Ingredients: (Serves 2)   Preparation Time: 15 mins
Onions – 1 large, finely chopped
Cumin powder – 1/4 tsp
Red chilli powder – 1/4 tsp
Tomatoes – 1, medium-sized, finely chopped
Green chillies – 1, finely chopped
Eggs – 3, beaten well
Garam masala powder – 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder – a pinch
Bread – 2 slices, cut each slice into small bite sized pieces
Coriander leaves – 1-2 sprigs, finely chopped
Salt to taste
Cooking Oil – 1 tbsp

Some of the ingredients

Method:
Heat a deep bottom fry pan, set it to medium heat. Dry toast the bread pieces till they turn golden brown. Keep them aside in a plate. Now heat oil in the fry pan & when the oil is hot add the onions & sauté them till they turn translucent. Add a pinch of salt to the onions to fasten the sautéing process. Next add the cumin, red chilli, turmeric powder. Mix well. Add the green chilli’s and sauté for a minute. Now add the tomatoes and sauté for about a minute. Add some salt to taste keeping the eggs in mind. Mix well. Now add the beaten egg mixture and mix well like you do when you prepare scrambled eggs. When the egg is about 30% done add the toasted bread pieces along with the garam masala powder & mix well. (The egg should bind with the bread hence we add the bread pieces when the egg is 30% done. If the bread is added immediately added after the eggs then the bread pieces get too soft & soggy.)

Keep tossing the entire mixture till the egg is completely done.

Garnishing:
Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.

Serving Suggestions:
Best eaten on its own. You can have it as a snack/breakfast.

Egg Stumbler/ Spicy scrambled eggs tossed with bite size bread pieces

For other quick snacks from egg, do check out my other favourites – Bun Masala, Keishto, Bread Upma/ Bite sized bread pieces tossed in some sweet & spicy flavoured onions, Indian Masala Omelette with Bread/ a.k.a Bread Omelette etc.


Indian Masala Omelette with Bread/ a.k.a Bread Omelette

Bread with Indian Masala Omelette ....

Bread omelette as it is famously known in India, is a comfort food to a lot of people. Cheap, quick, easily sold by street vendors. You walk by certain streets and the smell of egg empowers your mind, even if you aren’t hungry, sudden pangs of hunger come out of nowhere. You walk a little more and then you would see a group of people, some biting into their steamy hot bread omelette/ Anda Bread (in Hindi) and a few others anxiously waiting for their order. The crowd around the street stalls may sometimes make you walk away since there are times you are just fed up for your order to come up &  just makes you want to grab the very next plate that is getting ready. (From experience ;)). These street stalls are usually found near bus stops/ auto-rickshaw stands. You would see people from different classes of the society waiting to eat this. This does not cost you much. But then it’s not only the cost that lures one to have this.

If you ever had the chance to use Indian railways to travel you may have been woken up from your reverie by vendors repeating a long list of snacks they have for sale along with tea & coffee all in monotone. You would remember that bread omelette being a part of the items the vendor listed.

I do not think any of you need the recipe. One look at the ingredients and I’m sure you have figured it out. But nevertheless, here is the recipe.

Ingredients: (Serves 1)          Preparation Time: 5 mins
Eggs – 2, beaten well
Onion – 1 small-sized, chopped finely
Green Chilli – 1, made into a paste using a pestle, you can chop the chilli into rings, but I have usually noticed people have the habit of keeping it aside when they see the chilli in the omelette. Adding it this way will make you eat it along with the omelette.
Tomato – 1/2 of a small tomato, chopped finely
Coriander leaves – 2 sprigs, chopped finely
Turmeric powder (optional) – a pinch, I did not add turmeric
Cooking Oil – 1/4 tsp or more, depending on the kind of fry pan used. I used a non-stick, but the omelette tastes best made on an iron fry pan, 🙂 so if using an iron pan, you may need more oil
Salt to taste

Some of the ingredients

Method:
Heat oil in a fry pan set to medium heat. Meanwhile when waiting, take a bowl, mix the onions, tomatoes, chilli paste, coriander & salt together. I have noticed if you add salt directly to the beaten egg, it stays in lumps, but adding them to the veggies, lets it spread evenly. Add these veggies to the beaten egg and mix well.

Spread the heated oil evenly on the fry pan. Add the egg mixture. Spread the egg and veggies around evenly. There are chances of the veggies getting concentrated in one place.
Let the omelette cook. Reduce heat if you like to slow cook your omelette. Add oil on top if you like an oily omelette. Flip the omelette once the bottom gets cooked. Turn off the heat immediately after you flip. The heat from the fry pan is enough to cook the top side of the omelette.

Masala Omelette

Serve immediately with bread on the side.

Bread omelette

The best comfort food ever. Just dig in… the chilli paste adds a very distinct spice level to this omelette.

Bread with Indian Masala Omelette People who checked this recipe’s also checked – Keishto, Bun Masala and other egg recipe’s.