Achari Paneer

Some days when I am in no mood to go shopping for vegetables, i just grab some panner from the fridge and get creative. Achari Paneer has become one of my favorite vegetarian recipes. I do love the Tikka Maslas and Butter Masalas which are quite rich, but when I am craving for more  flavorful but a lighter version Achari paneer it is. The Pickling Masalas which go in it are robust and gives it a unique flavor . Its great to scoop with rotis or naan & makes a hearty meal. Hope you enjoy it as much as i did. 

img_8038-1

img_8068

 

Achari Paneer

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

img_8100

Ingredients

For Masala Powder

  • 1 Tsp Kalonji (Onion seeds)
  • 1 Tsp Fennel seeds /Saunf
  • 1 Tsp Mustard seeds / Rai
  • 1/2 Tsp Cumin seeds/Jeera

Ian a pan Dry Roast these spices for approx 2 mins  ,cool them and grind them to a fine powder & set aside.

Remaining Ingredients

  • 14 ounces Paneer ( cut into small cubes )
  • 1 medium sized onion ( finely chopped )
  • 1 medium size Tomato ( finely chopped )
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 tsp Ginger and garlic paste
  • 3 to 4 Tbsp Cashew nut powder
  • 2 tbsp Vegetable oil
  • 3-4 Dry Red chillies
  • 1 tsp Corn flour
  • 2 tbsp Red chili powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp Mango pickle gravy
  • 1/4 cup cream
  • 1/4 tsp Kasuri Methi
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro & mint leaves.
  • Salt as needed

Procedure

  • Take a wide pan and add oil , Dry red chillies followed by chopped onions ,tomato and ginger & garlic paste.Saute them for few mins  on medium heat and then add the roasted dry Masala powder, coriander powder ,red chili powder ,cashew nut powder and corn flour & saute continuously for 2-3 mins until the oil stars to leave the pan.
  • Now add the paneer cubes, yogurt, mango pickle and salt as needed  and mix until everything is incorporated . Simmer it on low heat for 15 mins .
  • Now add cream and you could add little water if you want if the gravy appears too thick. Simmer for  another 10 mins.  
  • Lastly add kasuri methi & chopped Mint,Cilantro leaves ad switch off the stove. Serve with Naans or Rotis. Enjoy 

img_8111

Thankyou 

Rajini

Roasted pepper and Avocado Hummus

Hi friends . Sorry it took me while to post a recipe due to a long summer vacation ,and getting back into routine is so much harder than i thought.Enjoyed my time thoroughly with family ,friends ,shopping and of course  lots of food .After 5 weeks of no cooking and eating delicious food mom made, all i wanted to do after getting back was laze around and sleep.

Anyways .Who is ready for fall ?  Well, I am not. Not ready to let go off summer yet .Will miss the fruit , barbecues ,fresh dips and the refreshing drinks. One of my favorite dip is guacamole especially home-made with fresh flavors of jalapeno and tangy limes. So, thought of adding the same flavors to my Hummus. This is the most creamiest & delicious hummus you will ever eat. It has the smokiness of the roasted peppers , spice from jalapenos and is super creamy with avocado. Enjoy. 

img_7725

img_7742

img_7750

Roasted Pepper and Avocado Hummus

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

img_7757

Ingredients

For Hummus

  • 1 & 1/2 Cup Garbanzo beans ( Soaked and Boiled or Canned)
  • 1 Green Bell Pepper
  • 1 Avocado ( Chopped )
  • 2 Jalapenos (Chopped )
  • 1 Tbsp Tahini Paste
  • 2-3 Garlic cloves
  • 1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/4 Cup lemon juice
  • Salt as needed

For Baked Pita Chips

  • 6-8 No Pita Bread ( Store Bought )
  • 1/4 Cup vegetable oil or Oliveoil .
  • 1 tsp Dry Italian Herb seasoning mix
  • 1/2 tsp Salt

Method

Hummus

  • Place the green Bell pepper on the burner of a gas stove turned to High heat for approximately 3-4  mins turning often . The pepper will start to pop and blister. Roast it until completely Charred .
  • Remove the charred pepper from the fire and set aside in a bowl. Cover the bowl with a lid so the steam does not escape. After 10 mins when the pepper is cool enough scrape the skin off from the flesh.
  • Ina food processor or a blender  combine Garbanzo beans , Roasted pepper , Chopped avocado,chopped Jalapenos , garlic cloves ,olive oil and blend it for 2 minutes.
  • Now add  lemon juice ,tahini paste and salt as needed and blend it until smooth for 2 more minutes.
  • Scoop everything in to a bowl & drizzle it with some olive oil ,sprinkle with some cayenne pepper & serve with home-baked pita chips.

Pita Chips

Pre heat the oven to 400*F. In a small bowl mix Oil , salt and Italian seasoning mix . Cut up Pita bread into 8 wedges and brush oil mixture on both sides . Place them on a baking sheet and bake them until crisp and golden for approx 6 to 8 mins.

img_7781

img_7779

Thanks for stopping by and please give your feedback by commenting at the bottom of the page.

Rajini

Watermelon Margaritas

If you know me personally ,you would know that i have never been a morning person. I can stay up as late as i can, but waking up early in the morning is a task. But living in sunny California ,occasionally i feel the need to getup early and hit the farmers market. Weekends seem more productive and i get motivated to start the week healthy with all the fresh fruit and veggies. Made these margaritas with watermelon & some strawberries i picked at the local market.

IMG_7558IMG_7698

Watermelon Margaritas

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

IMG_7719

Ingredients

  • 1 cup watermelon cubes (frozen)
  • 1 cup watermelon cubes fresh
  • 1/2 cup strawberries (frozen)
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 4 tbsp simple syrup (more if u like it sweeter )
  • 2 shots Tequila (more if you like stronger drinks)
  • 1 cup ice
  • Some sugar to rim the glasses
  • lime wedges for garnish

Steps:

  • Cut up watermelon into small cubes and freeze 1 cup to be used later
  • To make simple syrup add one cup water to one cup granulated sugar in a sauce pan & heat it until its completely dissolved. Cool to room temperature and set aside.
  • Take a flat plate with granulated sugar . Run a lime wedge around the rim of the glass & invert it onto the plate so that the sugar coats the rim. Put them in the fridge for few mins so the glasses are chilled.
  • In a blender or a vita mix add water melon cubes frozen and fresh , strawberries ,ice , lime juice , simple syrup ,tequila and blend until smooth. Pour this into the sugar rimmed glasses and garnish with lime wedges. Serve them immedeatly.

Thanks for stopping by and please give your feedback by commenting at the bottom of the page.

Rajini

Bread Aloo Bonda /Fritters

On  rainy monsoon evenings as kids while my sister , brother and myself would be playing out in the streets jumping in puddles of water , mom would be busy in the kitchen making these yummy Bread Aloo bondas. After calling us multiple times to get home  and warning us not to spoil our clothes with mud and rainy water , the only thing which would make us come home was these crispy yummy fritters. I still enjoy these with a cup of hot Masala Chai. This is moms recipe and she made this while I am in India .  

IMG_5474

IMG_5479

IMG_5480

Bread Bonda /Fritters

  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Print

IMG_5572

Ingredients

12 to 14 Sandwich Bread Slices

Oil for Deep frying

For Filling

  • 1 lb Potatoes ( Boiled and  mashed slightly )
  • 1 bunch Fenugreek leaves washed & chopped 
  • 1/2 cup Cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 cup Green Peas
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 3 green chilies finely chopped ( use more or less depending on how spicy u want )
  • 1  tsp Ginger and Garlic paste
  • 2 tsp Coriander powder
  • Pinch of Turmeric Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Mustard & Cumin seeds for Tempering
  • 2 Dry Red Chilies
  • Salt as Needed
  • 15 Cashew nuts
  • 3 Tbsp Oil

Steps

  • Take a pan and heat it on a medium flame and add 3 tbsp oil .Once the oil is  heated add mustard seeds , cumin seeds ,red chilies ,green chilies  and fenugreek leaves and saute for few mins until leaves are completely wilted  and cooked.
  • Now add the chopped onion and  saute for few more mins until translucent. Add Ginger and garlic paste,green peas ,all the dry powders, and cashews  and saute for few mins.
  • Finally add Boiled /mashed Potatoes,Cilantro leaves  and salt & mix everything until completely incorporated. Potato filling is ready.
  • Wait for few mins for the potato mixture to cool down to room temperature. Take a bread slice and sprinkle some water so the bread becomes lightly soft.
  • Take the slice into the palm of your hand and squeeze out any excess water  and place a small ball of the potato mixture in the middle.
  • Now  close the potato mixture with the bread  until the edges are completely sealed . Make sure the potato mixture does not come out ,otherwise while frying the whole thing will come apart. 
  • Take some oil in a frying pan & heat it on a medium flame. Slowly drop these bread bondas  2 at a time and deep fry them until golden brown. 
  • Serve them piping hot with some tomato ketchup.

Thankyou

Rajini

 

Cardamom Kulfi

 Kulfi,the Indian version of Ice cream is very popular due its rich creamy texture and mostly seen in the form of a stick or matkas (little pots ) .Its  not churned and so is denser & creamier than western ice-cream, which makes it easy to make at home as you don’t need an ice-cream maker. I added one of my favorite spices cardamom, but it can be made with any fruit /spice you like.Cardamom is a spice which is widely & commonly used  in Indian Kitchen  and has a  unique aromatic flavor .

IMG_7352 (1)

Cardamom Kulfi

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

IMG_7367

Ingredients

  • 2tsps cornstarch mixed into 3tsps milk
  • 1/3 Cup Sugar
  • 1 can 14ozSweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 can 12ozEvaporated Milk
  • 1 Pint Heavy Whipping Cream
  • 20 Cardamom pods crushed into powdered form.
 Steps
  1. Take a chilled bowl and add heavy whipping cream and sugar . Use a hand blender & whip it for 3mins to form medium soft peaks. Do not over whip/beat otherwise it turns into butter.
  2. Now add evaporated milk, condensed milk,cornstarch mix and cardamom powder until completely dissolved with a spatula. Pour this mixture into in an ice-cream tub or a loaf pan.Freeze it for  2hrs
  3.  Remove the contents into a blender and blend it for 1-2 mins . You can add crushed nuts like pistachios or almonds if you want to at this point. I didn’t. Empty the contents back into the tub and freeze it for 4-6hrs. Now your kulfi is ready . Scoop into ice-cream bowls & Enjoy …IMG_7376

Rose Falooda

One of the purest pleasures of warm weather is enjoying the refreshing food. Back in India I remember the most loved dessert during hot , humid days was ice-cream . We occasionally got to eat at restaurants, and the most popular dessert was Falooda . It is said that the Mughals bought this dessert to South India .Falooda is a colorful  Persian dessert made with milk flavored with rose syrup(or any flavor u like but mostly rose) , silky vermicelli noodles, basil seeds topped with a scoop of your favorite ice-cream , fruits & nuts. Slurping on the rose milk with ice-cream is a unique combination of  fresh exotic flavors. Tastes better with Home made kulfi.

IMG_7574

IMG_7603

Falooda

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

IMG_7598

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Milk Chilled
  • 4tbsp Rose syrup
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2tbsp Basil seeds
  • Vermicelli Noodles
  • 2scoops Kulfi (any flavor)
  • Mixed fruits & nuts of your choice

Steps

  1. Add sugar & rose syrup to the chilled milk & mix until completely dissolved
  2. Soak basil in some water for 5mins.
  3. Boil vermicelli noodles in hot water for 2 mins  and transfer them to cold water
  4.  Now assembling the falooda is the fun part. Take 2 long glasses. Layer it with basil seeds, Falooda sev/noodles and Rose flavored milk .  Now top this with a scoop of cardamom kulfi or any of your favorite kulfi ,mixed fruits & nuts. Enjoy .

IMG_7605

Thanks for stopping by and hope you try this easy refreshing dessert.

Rajini

Chicken Tikka Tacos

When I moved to the U.S my first Meal (outside) was at  Baja Fresh Mexican Grill. I never ate Mexican food until then. I ordered tacos with grilled chicken which reminded me of something i ate in India called Frankie/Kati Roll. Frankie is a famous street food made with any kind of flavored meat , Veggies or Panner wrapped or rolled in a Roti . This inspired me to make Tacos with Indian flavor /spicy chicken. I love the smokey. spicy flavor of grilled chicken and the fresh ingredients /toppings.  

image

image (1)

Chicken Tikka Tacos

IMG_7222

Ingredients
2 lbs Boneless Chicken pieces cut into bite size cubes
Marinade for the Chicken
3 Tbsp Thick Yogurt
3 Tbsp Tomato paste
1 Tbsp Ginger & Garlic Paste
1&1/2 Tbsp Kashmiri Red Chili Powder ( use more if u like it spicy)
1 Tbsp Coriander Powder
1 Tsp Garam Masala Powder
½ Tsp Cumin powder
1 Tsp Chaat Masala
1/2 Tsp Turmeric
Salt as per taste
2Tbsp Vegetable Oil
Spread
1/2 Cup Sour Cream
1 tsp Dried Mint
½ Tsp Salt
Toppings
1 Onion Chopped
1 Tomato (seeds scooped out & chopped)
1 Avocado (Chopped )
Cilantro ( Chopped) &  Lime wedges
8 Soft Tacos
Steps:
• Wash the chicken pieces and pat them dry.
• Add all the marinade ingredients to the chicken and set aside for 4-6hrs or overnight.
• Soak 4-5 wooden Skewers in water for 5mins. Now arrange the chicken pieces to the Skewers and set them on a baking sheet.
• Preheat the Oven to 400*F. Bake the Chicken skewers for 20mins .Turn them once in b/w at 10mins.
• After 20 mins turn the Oven Setting to Broil and set it for 5-7mins to get a charred look.
• Mix the sour cream with Salt and dried Mint
• Warm the tacos lightly in a skillet .Spread a layer of sour cream mixture on the tacos followed by chicken pieces. Now add the Toppings & squeeze lime juice. Serve them immediately while they are warm.

Notes – For Vegetarian option you can use Panneer instead of Chicken but iam not sure of the baking time.

image (2)

IMG_7216 (1)

Thanks for stopping by and plz give your feedback by commenting at the bottom of the page.

Rajini