Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Sczechuan/Schezuan/Sichuan Chinese Paratha

This is an innovative dish adapted from Chef Sanjeev Kapoor's recipe. A slight change from the usual aloo paratha gobi paratha and like stuff, I am sure the Indo Chinese touch to this dish will be admired by all. A wholesome meal by itself, this is also easy to prepare and is most liked on a cool rainy day.
You can make paratha dough following the recipe here. You can also preserve the dough in the fridge, in an air tight container for 2-3 days.
Onion - 1 Chopped
Garlic - 6 Cloves chopped
Ginger - 1 Inch piece chopped
French Beans - 6 chopped
Salt - To taste
Egg(Optional) - 1
Carrot - 1 grated
Tomato Ketchup - 2 Tbsp
Chilli Paste/Sauce
Cooked Rice - 2 Cups
Spring Onion - 2 Shoots chopped
Paratha Dough - To make 10-12 parathas
Oil - For frying

Heat a wok.
Add 1Tbsp oil
Saute chopped onions, ginger and garlic for one minute.
Add Chopped beans and salt, stir fry.
Stir in optional egg.
Add grated carrot and saute well.
Add ketchup and chilli paste and switch off the flame.
Pour this mixture over the cooked rice and mix well adding chopped spring onion.
Make equal size big balls with paratha dough.
Roll thick pooris with dough balls, stuff the pooris with sufficient Szechuan mixture, bring the edges together and seal to make a ball.
Roll out parathas, taking care not to break the edges.
Fry on hot tawa on both sides with little oil drizzled, until crisp and golden.
Serve with any Chinese dip or plain ketchup.

For a detailed video with recipe: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7WZsDgGJMwA

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Gulab Jamun(Authentic Punjabi Style)

"Happy Fathers Day"
Gulab Jamun is a universally loved North Indian milk sweet that you may find globally. There are instant gulab Jamun mixes available in stores but nothing tastes as good as the authentic Punjabi Gulab Jamun made with pure Khova(Mawa) and Chenna(Crumbled Cottage Cheese).

I first tasted very delicious hot gulabjamuns in Shimla in the year 1989. Then in 1994 when we were travelling from Dharamshala to Manali, our bus stopped over in a small town called  Chauntra in Himachal Pradesh. There was a restaurant within a shack where they were frying hot jamuns. I can still recall the succulent taste and the aroma of pure desi ghee that shrouded the lovely Gulab Jamuns expertly rolled by those culinary experts!

Most of the North Indian places are rich with dairies, and milk is in abundance. Milk products there, are not only inexpensive, but we get pure stuff any time. We down South have to depend on a few hyper markets for good milk products. Here in mangalore we are fortunate to get Nilgiri's milk products like Cream, Mawa, Paneer and cheese. We also get Amul and other major brand products here.

Though the quantity against cost using pure ingredients can not be compared to instant mixes, the quality and taste is definitely outstanding. Once you try these Jamuns, you will never settle for instant mix ones for sure. Here, we have followed the recipe from Chef Sanjeev Kapoor's book but we have made a slight change, like adding a pinch of saffron to the sugar syrup.

Mawa (Khova) - 1 1/2 Cups(Around 200Gms)
Chenna(Crumbled Paneer/Cottage Cheese) - 1/4 Cup(Around 50Gms)
Soda Bicarbonate - 1/4 Tsp
Refined flour (Maida) - 3 Tsp
Green Cardamom Powder - 1/4 Tsp
Sugar - 2 Cups
Saffron(Optional) - A pinch dissolved in little hot water(Or rose essence a few drops)
Refined Oil/Ghee - To deep fry

Grate khova, mash chenna and keep aside.
Mix the two along with soda bicarbonate, refined flour, green cardamom powder and a little water to make a soft dough.
Divide into sixteen equal portions and shape into balls.
Prepare a thin sugar syrup with sugar and two cups of water.
Clear the syrup by removing the scum, if any.
Add optional saffron/rose essence to the syrup.
Heat ghee/oil in a kadai.
Add the balls and deep fry on low heat till golden in colour.
Drain and soak in the sugar syrup for at least fifteen to twenty minutes before serving.

Please Note:
Temperature of the oil should be low or the jamuns will remain uncooked from inside.
You may stuff Gulab Jamuns with saffron and pistachio nuts or mishri.

Recipe Source: http://www.sanjeevkapoor.com

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Theek Rotti(Spicy Mangalorean Pooris)

Mangalorean specialty Theek Rotti is a unique type of spicy poori found only in Mangalore and the surrounds. It was popularised by Taj Mahal Cafe and in the Fifties till the mid Seventies my mother used to make only Theek Rotti and Chapathis with minced green chillies and cumin seeds in the dough. Of late, Taj Mahal still leads in attracting customers who relish them for breakfast with potato sukkha bhaaji and spicy tangy dry coconut chutney. This can also be eaten as tea time snack.
Other ways of relishing theek rotti are with Bibbe Upkari(Tender cashenut upkari), Chana upkari, Moong Daal Usli, mashed Nendra banana sauted with with ghee and sugar, with sheera or with a piece of Taj Mahal wheat /banana halwa. It also tastes good with simple coconut dry chutney with added hing. My father's fave combo used to be Theek Rotti with Wheat Halwa wrapped in, to make a Halwa roll. A cup of hot strong filter kaapi completes the breakfast.

This Theek Rotti recipe is how we Kudpikars used to follow. I have made slight variations according to my taste. You may find the recipe for Potato sukkha bhaaji here, and Bibbe Upkari here.

Whole wheat flour - 3 cups(600ml)
Green chillies - 3 chopped
Cumin seeds - 1 Tsp
Pepper - 10-12 peppercorns(Optional)
Sugar - 1 Tsp
Mysore/Yelakki Banana - 2 small ones mashed
Ghee - 1 Tbsp
Salt - 1/2 Tsp
Water - 1/4 cup approximately
Oil - For deep frying

In a mortar pound cumin seeds and peppercorns followed by chopped green chillies, coarsely.
Add sugar, salt and mashed banana.
Add wheat flour and knead, while adding ghee and 1/4 cup water sufficient to make a firm stiff dough, stiffer than normal poori dough.
Keep covered with a moist cloth for 15 mins.
Make small lemon size balls with the dough. 1 cup flour should make 16-18 dough balls.
Dust a chapathi board and roll out 2mm thick pooris.
Heat oil in a kadai. As the oil starts fuming, reduce the heat to medium.
Quickly fry the pooris one by one till fluffy and golden on both sides.
Transfer to kitchen paper to absorb extra oil and then serve with bibbe upkari, sukkha bhaaji or other accompaniments.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Bibbe Upkari/Tender Cashewnut Fry

With picture inputs from: Nisha Baliga U Shenoy

Bibbo or Tender Cashews are green cashewnuts plucked by villagers in the coastal belt of Karnataka mainly and in some parts of Northern Kerala. When we were young, some door to door vendors used to come with baskets on their heads which had packets of bibbo wrapped in big thick leaves. 100 count of bibbo per packet used to cost as less as Re.1/-, and the quality used to be very good. Now we hardly find such packing due to modernisation. My favourite place is Kamath Condiments in Car Street owned by Gurudath Kamath whose father Kamalaksha Kamath started the trade in the Seventies on a petty stall outside Tajmahal Cafe.

Various dishes can be made with this delicacy but Bibbe Upkari is a simple but all time favourite dish. This is a typical Mangaloren GSB curry/fry prepared in summer, since tender cashewnuts are available in abundance during the season. GSBs also dry the tender cashewnuts in summer and store for rainy days and winter months to make curries and sweet dishes.

This dish is relished with rice and daalithoi or rasam. if you make this for lunch or dinner, gherkins/potatoes are added to this and plain bibbe upkari is prepared as snack to go with Theek Rotti or Pooris. This is liked by all irrespective of age and origin.
Tender cashewnuts - 100 soaked in water for 4-6 hours, peeled and split into 2
Green chilles - 3, slit lenthwise
Gherkins(Tendli) - 10 cut lengthwise into 4(Or 1 potato peeled and cubed into small pieces)
Grated coconut - A handful
Red chillies - 2-3 broken
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Coconut oil or ghee - 1 Tsp
Salt - To taste
Bibbe Upkari With Gherkins
Boil the soaked peeled slit tender cashewnuts with optional gherkins/potato with just sufficient water to cover them and cook till parboiled.
Add slit green chillies, salt to taste and boil with high heat till almost all the water evaporates.
Now add grated coconut, season with mustard seeds and red chillies, mix well and serve hot with rice and daal.

Note: You can also add a sprig of curry leaves to the seasoning. Some people also add a pinch of hing.

Plain Bibbe Upkari

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Gulla/Vaingana Saglen(Brinjal Curry)

Gulla is a kind of brinjal grown in and around Udupi and is seasonal. Other varieties of brinjal are found in the market round the year. Like Ladies finger, Gulla/Vaingan is also a perfect veggie for making saglen, the GSB signature dish.
It's cousin Puddi Saglen is dry, more oily and more sweet than this slightly thin saglen. This curry is a side dish which can be eaten along with rice and daalithoi/rasam. It can also be eaten with chapathis. If onion is not added to this curry, it is served as 'saatwik curry' but I like it with added onions.

Gulla/Vaingan(Brinjal) – 150Gms cut into 1" cubes
Onions - 2 cubed
Coconut - 1 Cup grated
Coriander Seeds - 2 tsp
Red Chillies - 4
Tamarind - Cherry size ball
Jaggery Powder - 1 Tsp(Optional)
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves - 1 Sprig
Oil - 2 Tsp
Salt - To taste

Boil the brinjal pieces with a cup of water and little salt till par boiled.
Roast the coriander seeds and red chillies separately with little oil till crisp.
Grind together, roasted spices, grated coconut and Tamarind to a coarse paste.
Heat oil in a kadai. Add mustard seeds and allow them to splutter.
Add curry leaves and fry till a nice aroma emanates.
Add the cubed onions and fry on high flame till transparent.
Add the ground masala paste, powdered jaggery and salt to taste. Fry well till the masala thickens and the raw smell disappears.
Now add the cooked brinjal along with the water and keep till the masala thickens and infiltrates the brinjal pieces.
Serve with rice and daalithoi.

Chicken Nuggets

Chicken Nuggets are bland crispy boneless pieces of chicken deep fried with a coating of egg white and bread crumbs. Children love these at fast food chains mostly and these are also available in frozen packets ready to fry. But we at Garam Tawa believe in the adage 'Nothing like home made'!
Yes. You can prepare this at home better than they make in those fast food restaurants and you can also be sure about the purity of spices and oil that you use, while avoiding artificial taste makers like MSG.

This is an amazing recipe Meena saw on Zee Kannada Channel in a program called 'Oggarane Dabbi' made by a 7th standard boy! My nephew was expected for dinner yesterday but he didn't turn up, so we both had a feast of chicken nuggets along with other goodies for dinner.

We have modified the recipe a bit to add up spice and to suit our taste. You may make this exactly the way we did, as it turned out fantastic and perfect!

Boneless Broiler Chicken - 500Gms, cut into 1" cubes
Buttermilk - 1/2 cup
Salt - To taste
Red Chilli powder - 2+1 Tsp
Pepper powder - 1/2 Tsp
Garlic paste - 1 Tsp
Mixed Herbs/Oregano - 1 Tsp
Green chilli - 1 Minced(optional)
Coriander leaves - A handful chopped
Refined Flour(Maida) - 2 Tbsp
Egg - 1
Bread Crumbs - QS
Refined Vegetable Oil - For deep frying

Marinate the chicken pieces with buttermilk, salt, pepper, mixed herbs or oregano and 2 Tsp red chilli powder for at least 2 hours.
If too watery, squeeze out the pieces lightly and transfer to a bowl after marination.
Add optional minced green chilli, chopped coriander leaves and check for salt. 
Mix in the remaining chilli powder with maida.
Heat oil in a thick bottomed wok/kadai and reduce the flame to medium as soon as the oil starts fuming.
Beat egg, roll the marinated chicken pieces in maida mixture, dip in egg white, coat with bread crumbs and deep fry on medium heat till crisp and golden.
Drain on kitchen paper and serve with any sauce/dip of your choice.


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