Saturday, 16 March 2013

Spicy Alu Poori ..

Seriously, one of the most tastiest type of poori there is.. well maybe its because I love everything to do with potatoes.. but phir bhi :)

Just a few things:

Make the dough at least 1 hour before you want to fry the pooris.

Do make sure the dough is not too sticky

Of course you can make large pooris.. the little ones just look better

Roll them thin!

Oil must be hot - if it cools down, the pooris will not puff up

So, the dough:

2 medium sized potatoes, boiled very soft and mashed as soon as boiled, so that they dont soak up steam and become watery

2 mugs - around 400 gm - flour = maida

2 tsp kalongi

1 tsp salt

1 tsp crushed red chili flakes

1/2 tsp roasted, ground white cumin = safaid zeera

2 tblsp oil

lukewarm water to knead
Here's what to do:
Sift the flour with all dry spices

Add the mashed potatoes and knead a soft non-sticky dough with water

Add the oil right at the end, to make the dough non-sticky

The dough must be soft.. but not sticky..

I'm repeating the 'sticky' issue since it really will make a difference.. so do watch that

Once done, cover and set aside

When needed, heat the oil..

Divide the dough in half

Roll out one half with the help of a little oil so it doesn't stick :)

Cut out with a large cookie cutter or a sharp glass - I used a steel glass

Let them rest while the oil heats

Before throwing them in, roll a bit, to make thinner if they're not thin enough

As soon as u put one in, pat it gently with a slotted spoon to hold it a bit under oil. This is done to make sure the poori puffs up...

Turn and fry to a nice golden from both sides..

Remove with a slotted spoon and keep covered till needed

Best make them fresh

They went great with the dahi phulki.. but even simple achar is a good combination

Chana Daal and Palak with Phulkas...

I've not made this combination and so was hesitant to make too much. So I made the chana daal separate and the palak separate as two salans and then combined a bit of each..

The family was a bit unsure too but Alhamdolillah it tasted really very good.. SO I'll write both recipes and then u do as you wish :)


I keep a batch of frozen, pureed spinach in the freezer - you can buy urs or make your own.

Just saute fresh spinach in some ghee and a little salt. Once wilted, puree with a little water and cool down. Freeze in portions.

To cook, heat some more ghee and fry 1 tsp white zeera and 2 cloves garlic in it. Saute two chopped green chilies.

Add the spinach. Add salt and black pepper. Mix and let it cook. It will cook and reduce.. Once its nice and bhunofied, set aside.

Chana Daal

Clean wash and soak the daal for at least 4 hours. Overnight is best.

Heat 2 large chopped onions in ghee and add 4 red round chilies and 2 cloves of garlic

Saute a bit.

Add 1 tsp salt, or to taste
1/2 red chili flakes
1/4 tsp haldi
1 level tsp garam masala
3 or 4 crushed curry leaves
1 level tsp roasted white zeera
Saute the spices and add 5 to 7 washed dried plums (alu bukharas)
Add the drained daal
top up with enough water to cook the daal

Its cooked when the daal is completely soft. Dry off excess water.

Now in another pan heat very little ghee and mix 2 portions daal to 1 portion spinach.

In the ghee saute 1 green chili, chopped and then add he daal spinach mix. Saute well and let it cook on medium low heat.. until the ghee separates.

The alu bukharas are great for the taste.. ghee is a matter of personal preference.. you can use oil but the real taste will come out with ghee..

Serve with phulkas .. though pooris are great too.

Oven roasted chicken with blobs of butter ..

My kids love roast chicken.. I guess all kids love such things.. its generally easier to make this in the pan.. but the oven roasted touch is a great fragrant variant.. 

Marinate chicken a night before for best results.

1 whole chicken, cut into 12 pieces or as u wish..
1/2 bowl dahi
1 tbls garlic paste
1 tsp full paprika powder
1 tsp red chili flakes or to taste
1 level tsp salt or to taste
1 tsp black pepper powder
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp white pepper powder
1/2 tsp aamchoor

Mix all and marinate the chicken in this. Coating well with ur hands so as to reach all sides well.

Next day, preheat oven on 180.

Add 1 tsp papaya paste to the chicken and let it rest 10 mins. Put the chicken on a tray and pour over 1/4 cup oil. Cover with aluminium foil and bake at 200 foe 30 mins. Dont touch it.. just let it be.

After 30 mins remove and check. If its done, wonderful. Just baste with the gravy in the tray and let it get some colour under the grill without foil.

If not, turn chicken pieces over and cover again and bake for another 15 mins. By that time it should be done.. inshaAllah.

Remove and let it stay covered for a few mins before serving..

One-bowl Potato Pizza ... Delicious and Quick .. Unbeatable combo :)

This pizza is one of my children's most favourite.. its very versatile, you can adjust it any way you like and above all, its quick - no rising times and no sauces ..

The basic combination is this:

In a large bowl mix together
1 cups flour = maida
1 and half cup yoghurt
1 cup oil

2 eggs
1 cup grated cheese - cheddar works best
2 and half tsp baking powder
salt to taste
1 heaped tsp paprika powder
1/s tsp black pepper powder
1/4 tsp white pepper powder
1 heaped tsp oregano
1 finely chopped onion
2 finely chopped potatoes

This is the basic. Now you can add to it:
finely chopped paprika, broccoli, olives, chili flakes and other spices if you must. Though I'd advise to keep the basic spices.. the taste is simply different.

So mix mix all of that together. Oil an oven tray, and spread it out over the tray with a spatula...The batter will be thick and a bit yeasty looking.. but still spreadable and soft..

Stick it in the preheated oven at 180. For around 15 mins. Once done from below, turn on upper grill and give it a golden colour from the top. Remove and slip out on a jali so it doesnt get soggy from below..

Saucy Chicken Pizza ..

I"ve been baking since Zara was a small kid.. and pizzas have always been a favourite.. I think I can safely say that this is one of the bestest doughs I have yet made.. InshaAllah, I'm sure you'll love it too.. 

This is 
4 mugs - around 205 gms each - plain flour= maida
3/4 cup mug nido powder
2 tsp sugar
1 tblsp active dry yeast
1 tsp salt
3 tsp baking powder
4 to 5 tblsp olive oil
Lukewarm water to knead

Heat the water to finger-bearable hot and pour in a bowl
Whisk in the sugar and the yeast
Cover and let it froth for around 10 to 15 minutes

Means look like this:

Sieve together the flour and the baking powder
Mix in the nido and salt
Add this to the yeast mix and knead a dough with help of water and oil. Use only enough water to hold the dough and then touch hands to oil in between and knead a smooth elastic dough
Coat in oil and leave, covered, to rise in a warm place

Meanwhile for the sauce
Wash and quarter 7 to 8 bright red tomatoes
Put in a pan with 1 tsp fresh garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1 level tsp black pepper powder
1/4 tsp white pepper powder
2 tblsp olive oil
Cover and let it cook on medium low heat
As soon as the tomatoes are soft, blend them without adding any water..or only very little to help blend
Back in pan
Cover and cook to reduce and thicken sauce
Once it has the thickness you want, turn off heat
Add 4 tblsp butter and 1 tsp oregano. Cover and set aside

Now the chicken
I had marinated the chicken in garlic and vinegar the night before.. so this is half a kilo boneless..

For the chicken I heated 2 tblsp olive oil and added 1 tblsp freshly grated garlic
Then the chicken
1/2 tsp salt, i tsp red chili flakes, 1/4 tsp black pepper powder and 1/2 tsp paprika powder (shimla mirchi powder)
Stir to mix and cook, covered till chicken is soft
Turn out on a cutting board and with two forks, semi shred the cubes..

In a small bowl, mix together 1 clove of garlic, pressed and some olive oil

Roll out your pizza a tad thinner than u normally would
Grease and flour tray
Place the rolled out pizza on it and spread with the oil/garlic mix
Spread tomato sauce over the base and sprinkle around 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
Put the tray in preheated oven at 250 for 5 minutes. Enough for the cheese to melt a bit

Take out of oven and spread the chicken and whatever else ure using- I had capsicum cubes, olives, onions ..

Cover with cheese and pop back in oven to bake.. use top grill to get the cheese melted and golden

As soon as u remove from the oven, brush the sides of the pizza with the oil/garlic mix again.. Cover with tea towel and place a plastic bag over it.. Leave it like that for 5 minutes..

Cut and serve... and enjoy :)

PS - with this amount of dough I made one large baking tray and 7 small mini pizzas for school days and 7 small pizza 'wheels' as well.. So you could easily make two trays with this amount..

Hyderabadi Baghare Baingan ..

I always say there are absolute recipes.. each chef adds his own touch and that in turn is influenced by the country of residence.. So whenever someone says, they have the 'right' recipe... just take it as is :) 

Could be that this is different from how you make it. In my home, this is 'right' and I hope u'll give it a try... you might even like it :)

So first to make is the base

Roast separately
2 tblsp coconut powder
1 tblsp khashkhash
2 tblsp sesame seeds
1 cup peanuts
1 tsp zeera
1/2 tsp dhania

Roast separate because each has a different roasting time.. but then grind them all together. Set aside

Slice your aubergines if thats better liked in your family... otherwise, traditionally, we use small aubergines and slit them at the base in a cross. 

Whatever form youre using, fry them in oil and set aside. 

Mix the peanut powder with 1/2 cup yoghurt

Fry 2 medium onions and take them out when golden. Grind them and add to the yoghurt paste.

Soak some imli - around 1/4 cup in water to get its juice. Sieve that and set aside.

Heat some oil in a pan, splutter in it
7 to 8 curry leaves (karipatta)
1/2 tsp kalongi - (nigella or onion seed)
1/4 tsp methi dana - (fenugreek)
1/4 rai (mustard seed)

Add the yoghurt paste and bhunofy until the oil separates.

Once that happens, put the aubergines in and pour over the imli juice.. 

Add 1/2 glass water and let it all cook. Traditionally, this should be a thick gravy.. I had to thin it out due to HD's orders :) But it should be thick. So the water is just there to make it all blend together and form a thick gravy. Its not supposed to be shorba like. 

Serve with rice, with biryani is best.. but even as a breakfast dish with pooris its great...

Chicken Enchiladas with Cheesy Jalapeno Cream Sauce ..

So I had chicken leftover from a dawat.. and was in the mood for something cheesy :) So this is what became of it.. 

I made the tortillas first - you can buy ready made, but nothing beats home made :) 

For the tortillas:
1 kilo flour
2 tsp baking powder
50 grms butter, melted
1/2 tsp salt
milk to knead

Add all ingredients to the flour and knead a soft dough with milk .. Set aside, covered.

This amount should make around 12 tortillas.
Roll out thin and cook in a pan or on the tawa
Keep covered - best would be to store the made tortillas in a hotpot or something that keeps them moist and does not let them dry out..

For the chicken sauce
2 tblsp butter
2 tblsp flour
1/2 tsp or to taste salt
1 level tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp white pepper
100 ml cream
100 gms shredded cheese
500 ml milk
4 jalapeno peppers
1 spring onion, green parts only chopped

Heat the butter in a pan and add flour.
Make a roux by stirring and while stirring, pour in the milk in a thin stream to get a sauce.. keep heat low and keep stirring so no clumps form
Add the chopped spring onion and stir
Add the cream and all other ingredients and keep stirring
When the sauce starts thickening a bit, remove from hear

For the chicken
2 cups chicken
2 tblsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, pressed or crushed
1 spring onion, green parts only, chopped
Salt and pepper as needed

Heat the olive oil
Add shredded or cubed chicken to it - if its not cooked, u'd need to cook it well... this was pre-roasted so I just tossed ..
Add garlic and salt and pepper as needed. There is no desi masala in here... but of course, its a personal preference, so you can your red chilies and whatnot if you must.. but I'd suggest you give it a try as is..
Add the spring onion... toss
Saute the chicken in this and toss and turn to coat well
Remove from heat
Add 1/4 of the sauce to the chicken and mix well to coate

1/2 cup of milk
The sauce
100 grms shredded cheese

Mix the milk in the sauce so it thins out a bit
Lay the tortilla on a flat plate
Set around 2 to 3 tblsp of the chicken mix down the middle - how much you put is your personal preference..
Roll up carefully and put the roll, seam side down, in a baking tray
Fill up the tray
Spread the remaining sauce over the enchiladas and sprinkle with cheese
Bake in preheated oven, under the grill, to get some colour and get the sauce to bubble..

Enjoy :)