Moong Dal Dhokla

We all love besan dhokla. But what to do when you are craving for it and there is no besan at home and you don’t want to go out in this heat to get it from the store? Here is what I did.

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Make perfect dhokla with moong dal. Here is how.

Ingredients
For Dhokla
1 cup split moong dal
2 green chillies
1/2 inch ginger
2 Tablespoons curd
1/2 Teaspoon turmeric
1/2 Teaspoon asafoetida
1 Teaspoon fruit salt
Salt to taste

For Tempering
8-10 curry leaves
2 green chillies split into half
1 lemon
2 Tablespoons sugar
1 Teaspoon rai
1 Tablespoons oil

Method
Soak moong dal for 30-40 minutes. Wash properly and drain. Blend it to a fine paste with green chillies and ginger. Mix curd, salt, turmeric powder and asafoetida in the moong dal paste.

Now heat steamer or heat some water in a pressure cooker. Oil the vessels in which you are going to make dhokla.  At last add fruit salt into the dhokla mixture and mix properly. Now pour it into the tin and place it in the hot steamer or pressure cooker. Let it cook for around 15 minutes. Check by pricking a toothpick in the dhokla. If it comes out clean that means dhokla is ready. Or else let it cook for few more minutes. Once ready, take the tin out of steamer and let it cool before unmoulding.

In the meanwhile prepare tempering. Heat oil in a pan, add rai and let it splutter. Now add curry leaves and chillies and switch off the flame. Now add sugar, juice of lemon and almost half cup water. Switch on the flame again and let the sugar dissolve. When sugar dissolves completely switch off the flame and pour the mixture over unmoulded dhokla. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves. Cut into pieces and enjoy with green chutney.

Hope you will like the recipe. See you soon with another interesting recipe. Till then happy cooking!

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Oreo Cake

Who does not love Oreo biscuits? My family is just crazy for it and they love anything and everything made by Oreo. So I planned to make their New Year’s Eve even more special by making an Oreo cake for them. This scrumptious cake cooks in just 30 minutes and tastes heavenly.

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This is how I made it.

Ingredients

For Cake:
1 large packet of Oreo biscuits
2 Tablespoons all purpose flour
2 Tablespoons sugar
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Teaspoon baking powder
1/2 Teaspoon baking soda
Milk as required
Butter and flour for dusting the cake tin

For Icing:
3 Tablespoons fresh cream
1/4 Cup chocolate
1 Tablespoons Nutella
Handful of chopped walnuts

Method
Preheat the oven at 180 degree C. Crush the Oreo biscuits in a blender to make a fine powder. Seiv flour, baking powder, soda and salt together. Repeat the process twice and keep aside. In the meanwhile heat the milk but make sure that it is only luke warm. This is very important as hot milk will not let the cake rise. Brush the cake tin with butter and dust some flour.
In a mixing bowl mix together sugar and olive oil. Now add the sieved flour and mix well so that no lumps remain. Add the powdered Oreo biscuits and mix will. Now gradually add the milk little by little and make a thick batter. Pour the batter in the cake tin. Fill the cake tin up till one third only, so that there is still some room for the cake to rise. Pat the tray a couple of times and then place it in the preheated oven immediately. It will take around 20-25 minutes to bake the cake. After that check by pricking a toothpick in the center of the cake. If it comes out clean it means the cake is ready. Let it cool before unmoulding it from the cake tin.
While the cake cools down, prepare the icing. Melt the chocolate on a double boiler or in a microwave. Preferably use cooking chocolate, if it’s not available then you can also use plain unflavored chocolate available in the market. Heat a pan and reduce the flame. Add the cream and chocolate. Keep mixing and then add Nutella. In a couple of minutes you will see the mixture thickening. Switch off the flame. 
Unmould the cake and spread the icing all over. Sprinkle chopped walnuts and enjoy.
You can also skip the icing part and simply enjoy the cake with some chocolate syrup.
Am sure you and your family will fall in love with this cake instantly like we did. Hope to here from you about your experience. Till then happy cooking!

Besan Laddo

Raksha bandhan is around the corner and like always I am making sweets for my brother. Yes, I can buy them from shop also but that’s just not me. I like to give a personal touch to every thing and what better way to show your love & affection for your brother. Especially when he is crazy for sweets.

Every year I make different sweets for him. This year it’s Besan Laddo. Hope he enjoys having it and give me some nice big present 😆.

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Here is how I made it.

Ingredients

2 cups besan/chickpeas flour
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup ghee/clarified butter
4-5 green cardamoms crushed
Almonds as required for garnishing

Method

Start with dry roasting besan in a heavy bottom kadhai or pan on low flame. Keep stirring so that it does not get burnt. Roast for around 10-15 minutes until you get desired brown colour of besan and it starts to give a nice nutty aroma.

At this stage add melted ghee and mix. Keep stirring for 5-6 minutes more. The mixture will start to leave ghee from sides. At this stage add powdered sugar mix well and turn off the flame.

Let the mixture cool down a little then add cardamom powder and mix everything together. Grease your hand with some ghee and start to shape the Laddo by rolling it between both your palms. Garnish with almonds.

You can keep this laddo for almost 3-4 days in an air tight container. I am going to surprise my brother with these laddos. What are your plans?

Pressure Cooker Sponge Cake

It was my husband’s birthday, hence I decided to surprise him by baking a cake. It was a special surprise because I had never baked a cake before. When he left for office I started the prep. Everything was set the batter was ready the cake tin was greased and when I switched on my oven to pre heat it…. alas… there you have it. My oven broke down. Something went wrong and I was not able to adjust its setting. I tried a lot but of no use.

For a moment I thought, I won’t be able to bake the cake. But, then I told myself that it’s a test of my love and I shall not fail; no matter what, I will bake this cake. Hahaha…  I know the last line is a little cheesy 😆. However, I decided to try it in a pressure cooker because I did not want waste my effort of preparing the batter. I was sure that the cake will not be up to the mark, but to my surprise it turned out to be soft and yummilecious.

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Here’s the recipe.

Ingredients

For cake
1 1/2 cups all perpous flour/Maida
1 1/2 cup powered sugar
4 eggs
100 gm butter
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
A pinch of salt

For icing
1 cup whipping cream
1/2 can any juice (I used pineapple juice)
1 tablespoons chocolate chips
1/4 cup glazed cherries
Colourful candies as required

Method

Before you start make sure all the ingredients for cake are at room temperature.

STEP 1 – Sieve flour, baking powder, soda and salt together. Repeat the process a couple of times. This will make the cake lighter.

STEP 2 – In a bowl beat butter until soft now add sugar and beat till you get a foamy consistency.

STEP 3 – Now break eggs in the mixture one by one and keep mixing. Keep beating until the mixture is dense and foamy.

STEP 4 – Mix sieved flour into the egg mixture little by little. Fold it very gently into the mixture. No need to beat it hard. Make sure there are no lumps. If you think the mixture has become too thick then add some heavy cream or milk as required at room temperature. Make sure the batter is not runny.

STEP 5 – Remove the whistle and rubber ring from the lid of your pressure cooker. Close the lid and put the cooker on hight flame to pre heate.

STEP 6 – Put a percolate dish or a stand that fits in your pressure cooker. The idea is to prevent the cake tin from direct contact of heat.

STEP 7 – Grease the cake tin with a little butter and dust with flour so that it is easy to de-mould the cake.

STEP 8 – Pour the cake mixture in the tin. Make sure you only fill 3/4 of the tin and leave some space for the cake to rise.

STEP 9 – Place the tin on the stand in the pressure cooker. Cover the lid and put the flame to the lowest level.

STEP 10 – Wait patiently and enjoy the aroma of cake that will fill your kitchen for around 45 minutes. However, check after 30 minutes. After 45 minutes prick the cake with a toothpick, if it comes out clean that means your cake is ready. If not cover the lid again let it cook for some more time. Usually it takes between 45 minutes to an hour.

STEP 11 – Once the cake is ready switch of the flame and take the cake tin out of the pressure cooker. let it cool for 10 minutes before de-moulding. Usually it comes out easily but if required run a sharp knife around the sides of the tin to separate the cake. Put a plate on top and flip the cake tin. Pat a couple of times and your cake will be in your plate.

STEP 12 – If you wish to put some icing on the cake then you will have to let the cake cool down completely. In the mean while whip the whipping cream till it becomes fluffy. Add chopped cherries (optional).

STEP 13 – When the cake cools down  cut it from the middle and make two halfs. Pour the juice evenly on both the halfs. This will make the cake moist. Put some whipping cream on one half spread evenly. Now put the other half on top of it. Spread the whipping cream evenly all over. And decorate it as you wish.

STEP 14 – Cut the cake into pieces keep the bigger one for yourself 😈. And enjoy the Devine flavor of freshly baked cake.

Egg Chatkhara

Egg for me is a versatile ingredient. It can be used to make sweet or savory recipes. It can be molded in any shape and can be consumed in different stages like scrambled, semi-solid or hard boiled. It can be flavoured with Italian herbs to Chinese sauce to Indian spices and every time the outcome is as tasty as the other. I bet you all will second me on this. However, along with great taste the humble egg has many nutritional values too. It is a rich source of protein and keeps our heart healthy. I highly recommend it to women during pregnancy and breast feeding.

It was time for some fun and fusion in the kitchen with my all time favorite ingredient eggs. And the result!! A lip smacking, finger licking delicious recipe. You have to try it to believe it.

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Here is how I made it.

Ingredients –

4 eggs
2 medium-sized onions finely chopped
2 medium-sized tomatoes finely chopped
1 green chilli chopped
1 teaspoon red chilli powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
2 tablespoons cashew nut paste
2 tablespoons fresh cream
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1 tablespoons ginger-garlic paste
3 tablespoons oil
1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder
Salt to taste

Method –

Heat two tablespoons oil in a woke and add cumin. When it stars to change colour add onions. Fry until onions are brown. Add ginger-garlic paste and fry for a minute. Now add tomatoes, chilli powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and salt. Fry on medium low flame until all the spices and the tomatoes are cooked and starts to leave sides of the woke. Add green chilli and sauté, add casue nut paste and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add 2 cups of water, garam masala powder, cover and let it boil for 3-4 minutes on low flame. Add cream and let it semer for a minute before turning off the flame.

In a skillet heat some oil. You can also use butter if you like. Now break one egg and gently drop it into the skillet so that the yolk does not leak. Cover and let it cook. Check after a minute if the egg white is cooked from the bottom and the yolk is set, you can flip it and cook it from the other side aswell. However, if you want you can skip cooking it from both the sides. Now remove the fried egg and keep aside. Similarly fry all the 4 eggs.

Now drop the fried eggs in the curry, switch on the flame, cover and let it semer for a minute. Turn off the flame and let it rest for a few minutes before serving.

This Egg Chatkhara tastes best with parathas. However, you can also enjoy it with rice, pulao, nan or roti.

Achari Turai

Making boring vegetables interesting is a real challenge. Corrugette or Turai is one such vegetable that is not liked by all and I have to find different ways to prepare it so that my family relishes it. On one such incident I tried to make turai in achari masala and it turned out to be really yummy. If you think why eat turai if we have better vegetables available then think again. This boring vegetable is packed with nutrients. It is an excellent blood purifier and a must have for a diabetic. Not just that, it is good for skin and weight loss too. So stop thinking and try it once. 

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Here is how I made it.

Ingredients

500 gm courgette/turai
1 large onion finely chopped
1 large tomato finely chopped
2 tablespoons mustard oil
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon red chilli powder
1 teaspoon dhania powder
1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
1 dry red chilli
A pinch of carrom/ajwain
A generous pinch of asafoetida/hing
Salt to taste
1 tablespoons lemon juice

For achari masala
1 teaspoon cumin/zeera
1 teaspoon mustard seeds/rai 
1 teaspoon fennel seeds/saunf
1/2 teaspoon onion seeds/kalonji
1/4 teaspoon fenugreek seeds/methi

Method

Heat a pan and dry roast achari masala till fragrant but don’t let it change colour. Grind it coarsely and keep aside.

Peel and cut turai into chunks. In a pan heat mustard oil till smoking point. Now add ajwain, hing and dry red chilli. Saluté for a few seconds and add chopped onion. Fry on high heat till onion stars to change colour. Add ginger-garlic paste and fry for a minute. Add chopped tomato, chilli powder, turmeric powder and coriander powder. Fry it until all the ingredients are cooked and starts to leave sides of the pan.

Add courgette/turai and mix everything together. Now add salt and achari masala, mix, cover and let it cook on low flame until the courgettes/turai are tender. Pour lemon juice just before putting off the flame. Cover and let it rest for a couple of minutes before serving.

Enjoy with plain rice, roti or parathas.

Oats & Vermicelli Pancake

Post child birth, all a woman wants is to get back in shape. However, she is left with very little time for herself and thus, eating right bacomes the only key to fitness. Oats, which is high in fiber, is one such ingredient that helps in weight reduction and is at the same time very good for lactation. Also this is an interesting recipe for those who don’t like oats.

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Here is how I made it.

Ingredients

1/2 cup oats
1/4 cup medium thick vermicelli
1 cup vegetables finely chopped (carrot, capsicum, peas, french beans, tomato)
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1-2 green chillies (as per taste)
Salt as required
Water as required
Olive oil as required

Method

Dry roast vermicelli in a pan till it turns slightly brown. Boil water in a pan and drop vermicelli in boiling water. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until they turn soft. Remove from fire, drain and run it through cold water immediately. Drain and keep aside.

In a large bowl mix oats and 1 1/2 cup water and leave it for five minutes so that oats soak up all the water and becomes sticky. Now add vermicelli,  vegetables, salt, turmeric powder, green chillies and mix everything well. Let the mixtue reast for five minutes. Check the consistency of the batter. It should not be dry. Add water if required for a medium thick consistency.

Heat a non-stick pan and add a little olive oil. When the pan is hot drop a ladle full of batter and spread. Cover and let it cook for two minutes on medium heat. Remove the lied and flip the pancake. Brush some oil before flipping if you think it is required. Cover and cook for another 2 minutes. Cook on medium to high heat till the pancakes become crisp and golden from both the sides.

Serve with ketchup or any chutney of your choice.

Hope you like this healthy recipe and keep your weight in check. See you soon with another recipe, till then happy cooking.

Dates Raita

Hello everyone!  It’s time for another easy-peasy recipe. Just the other day I made aloo parathas and I wanted a sweet and savory accompaniment with it. I noticed I had some dates and yogurt in the fridge and I immediately thought of this recipe.

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Here is how it is made.

INGREDIENTS –

1 Cup fresh yogurt/curd
6-7 Dates deseeded and finely chopped
1 Tablespoon roasted and crushed peanuts
1 green chilli finely chopped
1/2 tablespoons chilli flakes
1/2 teaspoon roasted and crushed cumin
1/4 teaspoon black salt
1/4 teaspoon chat masala powder
Salt to taste
Chopped coriander for garnishing

Method

Mix all the ingredients together except dates. Taste the mixture once the flavours of chilli and salt should be strong, as sweetness of dates will balance everything. Put the mixture in fridge to cool. Add dates few minutes before serving. Garnish with fresh coriander and serve.

You can enjoy this raita with stuffed parathas, biryani or just relish it like that in summer.

Hope you enjoy this and other recipes of my blog. Do leave your comments.  See you soon with another recipe, till then happy cooking! 

Schezwan Omelette

Hello everyone! I am really sorry for the one year gap but I must tell you,  stealing ME time from your baby’s time is not that easy. Motherhood teaches you a lot of things. However, the most important lesson that you learn is preparing meal within 30 minutes. Schezwan Omelette is one such recipe that you can cook in a jiffy. This was a perfect Sunday brunch that I enjoyed with my family.

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Here is how I prepared it.

Ingredients

3 Eggs
1 Small onion finely chopped
1/4 Cup potato & carrot grated
1/4 cup finely chopped tomato, capsicum and peas
1 Tablespoons schezwan sauce
1 Green chilli finely chopped (optional)
A pinch of crushed black pepper
Salt to taste
1/2 Tablespoon butter
1/2 Tablespoon vegetable oil

Method –

Beat eggs in a bowl. Add schezwan sauce, salt and crushed black pepper.  Beat it once again and keep aside. Heat butter and oil in a pan. Add onion and saute till it becomes translucent. Now add the vegetables along with chilli and cook for a minute. Pour the egg mixture in the pan, cover and let it cook for a couple of minutes on low flame. Lift the lid and flip the omelette, cover again and cook for two minutes. And there you go…  your Schezwan Omelette is ready.
Enjoy it with toast, butter and a hot cup of coffee.
Hope to see you soon with another easy recipe. Till then you let me know how did you like this recipe.

Namkeen

One day I was feeling too lazy to cook anything and hence I ordered pizza at home. So as usual the pizza delivery boy handed me 4-5 sachets of mixed herb seasoning and chilli flakes. I then realised I have a habit of keeping these sachets and have stored a lot of them in my kitchen. Instead of throwing them I thought of using them for a recipe and that is when I thought of this namkeen. It was an instant hit in my family.

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Ingredients –

1 cup Maida (Refines flour)
1 cup Besan (Gram Flour)
1 cup Suji (Semolina)
2 tablespoon red chilli flakes
2 tablespoon dry basil leaves
2 tablespoon mixed herbs (you can use the herb seasoning that you get with pizza)
1/2 teaspoon crushed black paper
Salt to taste
5 Tablespoon oil. Extra for deep frying

Method –

Add maida, besan, suji, red chilli flakes, dry basil leaves, mixed herbs, black pepper and salt in a bowl. Mix all the ingredients together. Now add 5 tablespoon oil in the mixture and rub it well till you get bread crumb like consistency. Keep sprinkling water as required and make a stiff dough. Let it rest for 15 minutes. Now make lemon size balls of the dough and slightly flatten them by pressing them with your palm. Or you can give them any shape of your choice.

Heat sufficient oil in a deep pan and fry the namkeens on medium heat till golden brown. Remove from oil and keep them on kitchen towel or tissue paper. Serve with sweet chatni or tomato ketchup with a hot cup of tea.

It is a great tea time snack that you can store for 4-5 days.