Pasta in minutes

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When one says pasta…you quickly get the cheesy overload of pasta in your mind. Pasta can be healthy if we make it in the marinara sauce. Also by using the whole wheat instead of the Refined Flour one….the guilt is much less. A quick and super easy pasta, in which I cooked the whole wheat spaghetti in the sauce itself instead of boiling it separately and then draining off the water. This particular recipe is kids friendly, my 12 year old daughter does all by herself too. Reaction to this pasta after devouring it by my elder daughter, “This pasta is so much like the one I had in Italy!” (Happy to hear that) So..here is my take on healthy pasta in minutes.

Ingredients: (serves 5)

Spaghetti 1 box std size. Tomatoes 1kg, basil leaves 1cup, olive oil 6/7 tabsp, garlic finely chopped 6-7, tomato puree 2 cups, tomato ketchup 1cup, chicken cube (taste maker) 3packs, salt as per the taste, crushed pepper 2tsp, parmesan cheese 1-2 cup grated.

Method:

Chop tomatoes roughly. Tear basil. Chop garlic. Heat oil in a broad deep pan and infuse it with garlic and basil. Stir for 2 mins and add tomatoes. Saute for 5 to 7 mind. Add puree and ketchup. Add approximately 750ml water. Let the marinara sauce cook fo few minutes. Season it will salt. Now break the spaghetti and add it to the marinara sauce. Stir a few time and make sure the spaghetti doesn’t stick to the bottom nor it over cooks. Remove it off the heat when it is almost cooked but not fully..al dente!

Time to serve….with a pair of tongs make the spagetti swirl on the plate, add the sauce over it, drizzle some parmesan cheese and a few drops of extra virgin olive oil.

Enjoy the wholesome goodness of Pasta.

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Farcha

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Farcha is the Parsi style fried chicken. Sweetish, mild flavors of spices… the chicken is gently coated in egg and deep fried. Tender juicy chicken on the inside with a slight crunch of egg on the outside is just a heavenly feel. So..here is my take on Chicken Farcha.

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ngredients:

Chicken drumsticks 12, ginger garlic paste 1tabsp, turmeric 1/2tsp, coriander cumin powder 1tsp, red chilli powder 2/3tsp, garam masala 1tsp, cardamom and nutmeg powder 1/4th tsp each, sugar 2tabsp, tomato ketchup 2tabsp, chat masala 1tsp, salt to taste and oil for deep frying. Eggs 3. Bread crumbs/ Toast powder 2/3cups.

Method:

In a heavy bottom pan (I use the AMC) marinate the chicken with the dry spices – turmeric, chilli, coriander, cumin, garam masala, chat masala, salt and sugar. Add the ginger garlic paste and ketchup. Coat the chicken and cook on low heat till tender but firm. Takes around 15 mins. If the chicken too watery, dry it on high heat for 3/4mins. Now add the cardamom and nutmeg powder. After it cools, cover it with bread crumbs or toast powder by patting it properly. Keep it in the fridge for a couple of hours. Heat oil in a wok on medium heat. In a mixing bowl beat the eggs and dip the chicken into the beaten eggs. Roll it in the egg bath and deep fry till golden.

Enjoy the goodness of Golden crispy yet juicy chicken…drums of heaven.

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Kulcha

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Kulcha is a stuffed flat bread. The stuffing can be anything, vegetarian options like paneer, potatoes, cabbage the list is endless. The non vegetarian options can be mince, finely chopped chicken or even shredded tandoori. This is not roasted by flipping like the regular parartha, kulcha is roasted on the flame directly after being stuck on to the griddle. My take on this North Indian delicacy is I use clay griddle. The taste that the kulchas inherit is the beautiful, mild mud aroma, as though it is cooked in the clay tandoor. So here is the recipe.

Ingredients : (makes 12/14)

Cover- Refined flour 4 cups, salt to taste, curd 1/2cup, sugar 1tsp. Oild 3/4 tabsp.

Stuffing- Paneer (cottage cheese) 250 grms, boiled potatoes 7/8 small ones, salt to taste, sugar 2tsp, chopped green chillies 2/3, chopped coriander leaves handful, Cumin powder 2tsp, red chilli powder 1tsp, crushed coriander seeds 1 tsp, chat masala 2 tsp. Black sesame seeds and Butter for garnish.

Method:

Take a mixing bowl and add salt, sugar, curd and oil to the refined flour. Knead it into a firm but not very tight dough. Keep it for rest.

In the meantime prepare the stuffing. Grate paneer, potatoes. Add the coriander, chilli’s, red chilli powder, cumin powder, salt sugar, chat masala and crushed coriander. Divide into equal portions making lemon size balls. Take the dough and divide that too into small ball size balls. Roll a little with black sesame seeds, now place the stuffing on the rolled dough and bring the dough together covering the stuffing firmly. Roll with the help of a rolling pin and dust some maida (Refined flour) to make flat bread. Heat the clay griddle. Now apply some water on the rolled kulcha and Pat it on the water side on the hot grilled. Let it cook on one side for 2/3 mins. Now turn the griddle on the flame roasting the kulcha till it fluffs up into a beautiful golden color. Pat some butter and serve hot.

Enjoy with some curd or just as it is.

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Neer Dosa (Steamed Rice crepes)

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Neer (Water) Dosa simply means steamed rice crepes. Unlike the regular dosa, this one doesn’t need fermentation nor high in calories. It is a soft, satiny and melt in mouth delicacy of the Manglorean cuisine. Neer Dosa best goes with spicy prawns ghassi or pomfret curry (both recipe posted earlier on this blog). Vegetarians enjoy these with sambhar, kayras or chutney (again the recipes have been posted earlier). Here is my quick take on Neer Dosa.

Ingredients: (50 small dosas)

Rice 3cups, dessicated coconut 2cup. Salt to taste. Oil 2tabsp.

Method:

Wash the rice throughly and soak for 4/5 hours in water. While soaking the rice, add desiccated coconut. Grind the mixture into fine runny batter. Add oil and salt. Heat a non stick pan and pour in a ladle full of batter. Simply move the pan in circular motion for the batter to spread. On low heat cover it and let it cook for a minute. Serve hot with fish curry or kayras.

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Khara Mutton (Salty Mutton Curry)

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Khara Mutton is a specialty of the Maharashtrian cuisine. The curry is not thick but is packed with flavours and spices. Enjoyed with Bhakri(Pearl Millet -recipe posted earlier), white onions and a dash of lemon. As said by a dear friend – this dish will put you in a trance!

Ingredients:

Mutton 1kg, onions 2 medium chopped, tomato 1chopped, ginger garlic paste 1tabsp, curds 1cup, roasted onion, dry coconut, sesame and poppy seeds paste 1tabsp. Garam masala 2tsp, kala masala(recipe posted earlier) 2-3 tsp, red chilli powder 2-3 tsp, turmeric powder 1tsp, coriander cumin powder 2tsp, Salt to taste, oil 4-5 tabsp, coriander leaves chopped for garnish.

Method:

Marinate the mutton with ginger garlic paste and curds for a couple of hours. Heat oil in a deep heavy bottom pan and stir fry onions till slightly golden. Add the roasted onion coconut paste, and the dry spices – turmeric, chilli, coriander cumin powder and garam masala. Roast the masala till it leaves oil. Add marinated mutton, tomatoes and roast on high flame till slightly brown. Season it with salt. Add 3 to 4 cups of warm water and pressure cook it. Garnish the thin runny spicy curry with handful of chopped coriander leaves.

Enjoy the curry with Bhakri, white onions and lemon.

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Kheema Pao

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Kheema pao is not just a meal but is one of the most satisfying experience. (दिल का पेट भर जाता है।) Can be enjoyed as breakfast, lunch or dinner. It can be mutton or chicken, both has it’s unique taste. So, here is my take on Kheema. I have used chicken mince, one can try the same recipe with mutton or beef.

Ingredients :

Chicken mince (kheema) 500 grms, onions 4 medium finely chopped, green chillies 4/5 chopped, ginger garlic paste 1tabsp, tomatoes chopped 2, turmeric powder 1tsp, coriander cumin powder 2tsp, red chilli powder 2/3 tsp, red masala 3/4 tsp (or garam masala 2tsp, chat masala 1tsp), mint leaves handful, coriander leaves chopped handful, salt to taste, oil 3/4 tabsp, fried onions for garnish. Butter 2tabsp.

Method:

Heat oil in a pan and sauté onions till golden brown, add tomatoes and fry till it leaves oil, add the dry spices (turmeric, red masala, chilli and coriander cumin powder). Add chillies and ginger garlic paste. Stir fry for a min and add the mince. (If chicken it takes 15/20 mins to cook if mutton, it takes 30/40 mins) stir fry on high flame, season it with salt. Gradually add water a cup or two of warm water ( consistency depending on how you prefer, I prefer dry so add only 1 – 11/2 cups of water).

Bring it to a boil and add mint and coriander leaves. Keep the lid on and lower the heat and allow it to slow cook. After it is cooked keep the heat high and dry out the curry a little. Garnish it with more coriander, mint leaves, butter and fried onions. Serve it with Pao.

( I smoke the kheema with a piece of lit coal for extra flavour)

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Masoor Aamti (whole Red lentil curry)

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Masoor Aamti is a spicy curry which is a regular feature at home. Spicy flavourful and satisfying….is a power house of nutrition. Here is the recipe which you will surely want to try.

ngredients:

Whole masoor (Indian Brown /Red lentil) 1 cup, onion chopped 1, green chillies 4/5, mustard seed 1tsp, asafoetida 1/2 tsp, curry leaves 8/10, turmeric powder 1/2 tsp, coriander cumin powder 1tsp, red masala (SKP community paachkalsi ) 2tsp, 1tabsp paste of roasted onion, dry coconut and garlic, garam masala 1tsp, salt to taste, oil 2/3 tabsp, palm sugar or jaggery 1tabsp, coriander leaves chopped handful.

Method:

Wash and pressure cook the masoor with chopped onion and chillies till tender. Heat oil and tamper it with mustard, asafoetida and curry leaves. Add the dry spices like turmeric powder, red masala and coriander cumin powder stir fry for less than a minute. Add the roasted onion coconut paste and stir fry till oil oozes out. Add the cooked masoor, palm sugar, garam masala and some warm water. Season it with salt. Bring it to a boil and simmer it for 5/7 mins. Keep on stirring till it blends into a thick curry. Garnish with coriander leaves. Serve hot with roti or rice.

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