Apr 26, 2012

Chicken Biryani

The word Biryani itself makes me feel hungry!! Here in Kuwait we get various types of biryani's and they all taste so different. I do try various methods but the one mentioned below is a family favorite. My hubby doesn't like dry biryani so i try and make it a bit juicy, making biryani is a long procdure but the end results are delicious.So here goes the recipe.

Chicken - 750 g
Rice - 2 cups
onions sliced- 2 to 3 medium size
onions chopped - 2 medium size
tomatoes chopped medium size
whole spices - 2 tbs (star anise, cloves, green and brown cardamom, mace, nutmeg, bay leaves,peppercorns & cinnamon)
dry fruit - some cashews + raisins
coriander finely chopped - generous amount
black cumin seeds - 1 tsp (shahajeera)
ginger garlic paste - 1tbs
mint leaves - handful
curd - 1 cup
saffron - 1 tsp ( press the saffron with your fingers and then soak in milk )
food color - optional
red chilli powder - 2 to 3 tsp (asper your intake of spice and the quality of chilli)
turmeric powder - 1 tsp
garam masala powder - 2 tsp
tandoori masala - 1 to 2 tsp
kevra essence - 1 to 2 drops optional
salt to taste
Oil or ghee

1. Marination
take a big bowl add the cleaned chicken pieces, half cup dahi (yoghurt), 1/2 tbs ginger garlic paste,tandoori masala, 1 tsp red chilli powder, a bit of turmeric powder, some mint leaves, chopped coriander & salt.Mix it nicely and keep in the refrigerator for minimum 30min. If you have time then keeping for an hour is good.

 2. Take a big vessel add water to it double the quantity of rice I just add plenty of water along with salt and dew drops of oil and the whole garam masala and shahajeera (black cumin) and let it boil.Immediately wash the rice and keep it for 15 min until the water gets boiled. Then add the rice to the boiling water be careful this is a very important step for a perfect biryani. Cook the rice till 3/4th done. Immediately strain it under cold water this prevents the rice to cook further.You can use a large colander and can keep the rice aside.Do not discard the whole masala.

3.Fry the sliced onions till golden brown and keep aside

By now the chicken must be marinated so the next step is to cook the chicken.

4.Take a cooking vessel, heat oil add the cashews and raisins as they turn golden immediately remove on a paper towel. In the same oil add the chopped onion along with a bit of salt to cook faster, once they turn pink add the remaining ginger garlic paste let it get cooked for a min or two then add the tomatoes and cook till they turn mushy add the remaining red chilli powder, turmeric and garam masala powder.Let it cook splash some water so that the masalas are not burnt.now add the chicken and fry for some time until it changes its color add salt if required and some water. Cover with a hollow plate with some water in it. (This is called vafevar sijawne in marathi). Cook the chicken till 3/4th done. remove the plate if you feel the water is more then cook it on high flame without covering the water will be dried.

5.Now the assembling
I always use my chapati pan (tawa) underneath the biryani. So now start heating the pan. take a heavy bottom vessel add a bit of ghee and spread it over now add the chicken layer top it with rice now sprinkle the fried onion some saffron which is soaked in milk,then add some cashews and raisins along with chopped mint and coriander leaves. Again follow the same method for layering the last layer should have rice on the top sprinkle some kevra essence along with the remaining onion, cashew, raisins, mint coriander and few drops of ghee. If you are using food color just sprinkle it in between the layers. Close the vessel with a tight lid seal it with kneaded dough or aluminium foil. And keep it on the Tawa for the first 5 min keep the flame medium high then lower the flame and cook for 30 min. Let it remain closed for another 10 min.Once open serve it with a Raita and papads. Enjoy!!

Apr 25, 2012

My First Award

It feels so so good!!Just came to work as always anxious to open my blog and to see the lovely comments from my blogger friends. Your comments mean a lot to me guys it gives you a push to work more on the blog. Ok back to the award Divya from http://youtoocancookindianfood.blogspot.in/ thanks a lot for nominating me for the Versatile Blogger Award!! You seriously made my day. As it is my first award it will always be special and you will be remembered for it. I am geared up to post more and more recipes. Thanks a lot dear friend.

There are a few rules and regulations to be followed when you accept the award.
1. Create a new post
2. Thank the person who has nominated you for the award
3.  Pass it on to the fellow bloggers
4.  State 7 facts about you
5.  Claim and post the award pic.

Like an obedient blogger its time to follow the rules.

I would again like to thank Divya - http://youtoocancookindianfood.blogspot.in/ for nominating me for the award. Thanks for appreciating & encouraging my work.

Passing the award to my fellow bloggers I hope you all will be delighted to accept the award.
1. Siri from http://www.sirisfood.com/ she has a wonderful blog the pics are just fabulous. I have tried the Dum Aloo and yetserday made the Rajasthani Bhindi they both turned out to be a hit. looking forward for more recipes Siri.
2. Dassana from http://www.vegrecipesofindia.com she too has a good collection of recipes the pics are superb.
3. Nashi from http://nashplateful.blogspot.com/p/recipes.html she has a huge following with very tasty collections of recipes. I have tried the Rogan josh and it was a super hit.
4.Jagruti from http://turmerickitchen.blogspot.com/. She is also a new blogger and I like the way she presents her mouthwatering recipes.
5. Vaidehi of http://chakali.blogspot.com too has a huge collection of recipes she is posted the recipes in english & marathi. i usually refer her blog to make a maharashtrian dish.
6. Pratima rao of http://prathimarao.blogspot.com/ again a huge following with a wonderful collection of recipes.
7. Avika of http://varietyisthespiceofyourlife.blogspot.com/ just visited her blog today and instantly became a fan of her blog.
8. Deeksha from http://deeskitchen-deeksha.blogspot.com/ has a wide range of vegetarian recipes.
9. Lavanya of http://lavanyasrecipes.blogspot.com/ A lovely blogger with lots of mouthwatering recipes.
10.Satya of http://superyummyrecipes.blogspot.com she too has a wide range of delicious recipes.

Fact about me
1. I love my daughter Saisha the most. I know all moms do and I am no different but still like to share with you all.
2. I was born and bought up in Bombay and relocated to kuwait after my wedding.
3. I am a Maharashtrian and married to a North Indian of course it was a love cum arrange marriage.
4. Not many people know but would like to share this fact and I hope you all believe me that my Heart is on the right side of the chest. Yes guys it true. By Gods grace I am a complete normal person.Its a very rare case and very few people are lucky to have it.
5. Just love cooking that's my only hobby.
6. I am a die hard romantic person loves romantic dinner, candles flowers oh this thaught also makes me blush.
7. I believe I have a good sense of humor.

Thank you friends for visiting my blog and sharing such lovely comments.Divya once again thank you for the award.

Apr 22, 2012

Paneer Manchurian

Paneer is a favorite in most households and so is Chinese.Both of them when combined turns into a fabulous dish. I have avoided the deep frying of Paneer and making it a maximum healthy dish. I hope you all will enjoy making and eating it.

Paneer - 250 gm
onions - 1 medium sized cubed
capsicum - 1 medium sized cubed
carrot - depends on the size i used half the carrot and cut in rounds
corn flour - 3 tbs
maida (all purpose flour) - 1 tbs
soya sauce - 3 tbs
red chilli sauce - 1 tbs
chopped green chilli - 1 tsp
chopped garlic - 1/2 tbs
chopped ginger - 1/2 tbs
Ginger garlic paste - 1/2 tbs for marination
salt to taste
pepper powder to taste
roasted sesame seeds - 1/2 tbs
water ( depends how much gravy is needed )
Spring onions - green part 2 tbs for garnishing

Take the paneer in a bowl, add half of the cornflour, maida, ginger garlic paste, half of the soya sauce, pepper powder and salt mix it nicely by adding a bit of water. The above mixture should be nicely coated to the paneer. Refrigerate it for 15 to 20min.

After 15 min heat the Frying Pan by adding some oil. Add the paneer pieces to the oil separately try to fit all the pieces in one go. shallow fry them until they are turned slightly brown. remove them on an paper towel.

Manchurian Gravy
Take a cooking vessel add some oil, add the chopped ginger garlic and chilies then add the onions after a few minutes add the capsicum fry some sometime then add the soya sauce keep stirring keep the flame medium high while doing this procedure. Add the carrot lower the flame let it cook for some time then add water, red chilli sauce and salt. Let it boil. Take the cornflour add a bit of water to it and make a paste. Now add this to the boiling water. Stir it do not allow lumps to form.Prepare a saucy type gravy. Immediately add the fried paneer let it cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Garnish with roasted sesame seeds and spring onions.

P.S. using sesame oil while preparing chinese dishes adds a good flavour to the dish.

Apr 12, 2012

Vegetable Pulao with left over Paneer Mutter gravy

Last Tuesday was quiet a tiring day at office so thought of making a one dish meal. Peeped in the fridge saw the  paneer and mutter bhaji it was semi gravy. There were some carrots, french beans so came up with this simple but delicious rice. It went very well with papad and mango pickle. It would have been tasted even better if I would have made the extra efforts to make the raita, but trust me folks I just wanted to sleeeeeeep after that.

We can make good use of left over food by making a completely different dish. This gives us variety as well as the food is not wasted.

cooked rice - 1 cup
ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
onion diced - 1 medium size 
mixed vegetable - 1/4 cup (I used carrots and french beans)
leftover paneer mutter semi gravy was about 1/4 cup
cinnamon - 1 stick
black cardamom - 1
cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
salt to taste
black pepper powder - 1/2 tsp
oil for tadka.
Heat oil in a cooking vessel, add cumin seeds, cinnamon, black cardamom as they splutter add the diced onions and ginger garlic paste keep the flame on medium add a bit of salt and fry the onions until  light brown. Add the mixed vegetables along with the leftover and fry for a minute or two so that the gravy dries up. Be careful to add salt as the veggie already has it before. Add the cooked rice along with pepper powder and salt Mix all the ingredients and cook for 5 min on low flame. Serve it hot along with papad and pickle.

Apr 10, 2012

Cheese & Vegetable Omlete

According to me EGGS are the best to work on, kids love them so do adults. In most homes the day is begun with an egg of course the way of making differs with every house. I remember when we were kids mummy used to make omelet for us ( me & my younger brother).It was a routine every Sunday breakfast is Bread & Egg watching HE MAN & Mowgli oh getting nostalgic!!!The omelet mummy made was simple but used to taste heaven of course it has the magic touch of mummy...Now also whenever I visit India I insist her to make the same for me.. OK back to my Cheese & Veggie omelet.Peeped in my fridge found some carrots & capsicum so thought of making a healthy breakfast. My daughter loves cheese so I always stuff it.Combined the veggies & cheese and the end results were quiet good. Here goes the recipe.

Eggs - 2
Carrot & Capsicum finely chopped - 1/4cup
green chilies  finely chopped - 2 nos.
onion finely chopped - 1 medium size
fresh chopped coriander - 1 to 2 tbs
milk - 2 tbs
cheese - mozzarella or cheddar- 1/4cup
oil or butter - to pan fry the egg
salt to taste

Take a bowl mix all the above ingredients except for cheese. beat with a egg beater or a normal spoon. The more we beat the egg the omelet will be more soft. Heat oil in a pan on medium flame, pour the egg mixture add the grated cheese and close lid for 1 min, open the lid and flip the egg carefully. Press a bit from top & immediately remove it off from the pan. This is to avoid the cheese from over cooking.Enjoy with Toast & ketchup.

Linked to Sumee's http://sumeesculinary.blogspot.com/2012/04/bon-vivant-moments-3-breakfast-ideas.html

Eggplant/Brinjal fritters (vangyache bhaji)

Brinjal bhaji s are quiet famous in Maharashtrian homes. We also call it vangyache bhaji which goes very well with any Pulao or even simple dal chawal. I had nice purple brinjals in the fridge so thaught of making the bhajis.There are several ways of making this dish but this is my way & would like to share it with all my friends here. Hope you enjoy making & eating it as well.

Purple brinjals - 2 medium size 
Gram flour - 1 cup
red chilli powder - 1 tsp
turmeric - 1/2 tsp
ajwain (carom seeds) - 1/2 tsp
coriander & cumin powder (dhaniya & jeera) - 1tsp
chopped coriander - 1 tbs (optional)
asafoetida (hing) - a pinch
sugar - a pinch
Oil - to fry
salt - to taste

Wash the brinjals, slice them round ( thinly sliced ). take a bowl of water and put the slices with a bit of salt. This avoids the brinjals to turn black. 
To prepare the batter we take gram flour add red chilli powder, turmeric, ajwain, hing, sugar, dhaniya & jeera powder, chopped coriander & salt. Mix all the ingredients nicely to avoid lumps add water slowly until you have a thick batter like consistency.Keep aside for 5 min. Heat oil in a kadhai gently dip each slice in the batter and fry on medium flame until it is cooked and turned light brown.Remove & drain on paper towels.

Enjoy with tomato ketchup or green chutney.

Apr 3, 2012

Indo Chinese Chicken Sizzler made on Tawa

Sizzler- My favorite dish. I can eat a sizzler at any point of time. So this particular post is dedicated to meeee!! in Mumbai we have many places where we get a good sizzler but the best according to me is from Yoko's. I always wanted to try this at home but couldn't as we do not have a sizzling plate & i thought it is impossible to make it at home. Until once I came a across a website where this lady had assembled all the ingredients on a pan. I decided to try it at home and guys it was a super hit. My hubby loved it. In fact one of my v. good friend ( Vita ) tried the same way with jumbo prawns & they too were super.Vegetarians can make the same with Paneer.You can always improvise the ingredients as per your likes or dislikes.

boneless chicken - 400gm
schezwan sauce - 2 to 3 tbs ( I used ready made Chings sauce )
ginger garlic paste -1/2 tsp
vinegar - 1 tbs
salt  to taste
Marinate all the above minimum 1 to 2 hr in refrigerator

For frying the chicken
1 Cup Corn flour + Wheat flour ( mix both the flours & keep aside without adding water )

Hot garlic sauce
oil - 2 tbs
garlic finely chopped - 2 tbs
schezwan sauce - 2 tbs
tomato blanched & made to a paste - 2 medium size
red chilli sauce - 1 tbs ( you can add more or less as per ur spice intake )
vinegar - 1/2 tbs
sugar - 1/2 tsp
salt & pepper as per taste
warm water - just to get a saucy texture.

mixed veggies - 1 cup slightly blanched - I used carrot, french beans, cauliflower florets & sliced mushrooms
Onions - 1medium size - diced
Capsicum - 1 medium size - diced

Cooked rice or Noodles or pasta of you choice - 1 Cup
French Fries - handful

Other ingredients
Soya sauce - 1 tbs
cabbage leaves - 4 large slightly blanched
salt to taste
Chapati or dosa pan (If you have a sizzling plate then that is gr8  but if you don't then we can make it on a pan as well )

Remove the chicken out & let it come to the room temperature.
take out 3 to 4 tbs of the corn & wheat flour mix, add water to & make a thin paste of dipping consistency. Keep the remaining flour for dusting the chicken. Heat oil in kadai first dust the chicken in the dry mix then dip in the thin paste and deep fry the chicken.

Prepare the sauce
Heat oil in a cooking vessel, add garlic after few seconds add the schezwan sauce, red chilli sauce, vinegar stir for a while immediately add the tomato paste, sugar , salt & pepper to taste. After 2 to 3 min add water as required a saucy consistency. After 5 min switch off the gas. Add the above fried pieces of chicken to the sauce.
By this time start heating the pan or sizzling plate on medium flame.

Prepare the Veggies
Heat a little butter or oil in a kadhai  keep the flame high add diced onions, capsicum, add the 1/2 tbs of soya sauce stir for a few seconds and add the remaining veggies add salt pepper and stir for a 2 to 3 min on high flame switch off the gas.

Prepare the rice
Heat butter or oil in a kadhai add the cooked rice or noodles or paste add the remaining soya sauce and salt pepper after 3 to 4 min switch off the gas.

By now the pan must be quiet hot if not wait for some time it should be really hot. You should be really quick for the next steps if you want the real sizzling effect.
Place the cabbage leaves on the tawa or sizzling plate. leave some butter underneath them. place the chicken along with the sauce again leave some butter from the sides. place rice, veggies & french fries if sauce is extra just put on the ingredients leave some more butter. By now you will already get the sizzling effect.If you want you can grate some cheese just for garnishing.
Enjoy the Sizzler.

I know the whole procedure seems very tiring but trust me once you get it on the plate its HEAVEN. I hope you will like it.

Apr 1, 2012

Butter chicken

Butter chicken (or murgh makhani) is part of Indian cuisine, popular in countries all over the world. The origins of butter chicken can be traced back to a Punjabi restaurant called Moti Mahal in Delhi. Butter Chicken is regarded to have been first introduced by Moti Mahal in Daryaganj, Delhi.
The name itself makes you feel hungry.Have tried many ways of making, but this particular recipe has come out the best. Its almost the same as you get in the restaurants.

Marination - Minimum for 1 hr
Boneless chicken - 500gm
Tandoori masala - 1 tbs
Curd - 1/2 cup
Ginger Garlic paste - 1 tbs
Salt to taste

Onion - 2 medium size finely chopped
Tomatoes - 2 medium sized (blanched) & grinded
ginger garlic paste - 1/2 tbs
butter - 4 tbs ( You can combine it with oil as well )
Cream - 1/4 cup fresh cream
Cashew - 1 tbs soaked in water and grinded to a paste
Kasoori Methi - 1 tsp
turmeric - 1/2 tsp
red chilli powder - 1 tsp (Preferably Kashmiri)
garam masala - 1/2 tsp
chopped coriander for garnishing

Heat half of the butter in a cooking vessel add the marinated chicken and cook till 3/4th done.Keep aside
Heat the remaining butter in the same vessel add onions along with a bit of salt & ginger garlic paste fry till the onions turn pinkish brown. Add kasoori methi ( rub it with the palms )turmeric powder, red chilli powder, garam masala powder fry with the onions for sometime then add the tomatoes, cashew paste. After a few minutes add the chicken & salt cover and cook until the chicken is fully cooked. Add cream and cook for a 2 to 3 min on medium low flame. Garnish with chopped coriander and a bit of cream. Enjoy with hot parathas, phulkas or steamed rice.

Cashews soaked in warm water
Frying onions in butter

Marinated chicken