Maalpua

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Maalpua is an authentic Rajput delicacy. Whole wheat flour mixed with palm jaggery, deep fried with mild spices…is enjoyed to the hilt in every Rajput family. As a kid I always pricked the peppercorn from the maalpua and wondered why Ma adds it…but now I know it simply takes the simple maalpua to a new level in distinctive taste. So here is my take on the Maalpua.

Ingredients:

Whole wheat flour 100grams, palm Jaggery 100grams, peppercorns 7/8, salt to taste. Ghee for deep frying. Water to soak in the jaggery approximately 200/300 ml. Refined flour /maida 1 – 2tabsp optional.

Method:

Soak the jaggery in water the previous night so that is softens and dissolves. In a mixing bowl take the whole wheat flour, season it with salt, add the whole peppercorn. Stir in the jaggery water till it becomes runny like that of crepes. Heat ghee in a broad pan and pour a laddle full of maalpua mix. If the Maalpua flutters and disintegrates add a couple of tabsp of maida.

Laddle after laddle pour in to make small soft yet crispy on the edge maalpuas. Bite into the hot soft centre with a surprise taste of peppercorn which instantly brings in the hot element to the sweet maalpua.

Serve hot with Mathaa (spiced and tempered buttermilk).

N.

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Muttonacha Rassa

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Sundays is a usual scene in my kitchen….and most of the Sundays are enjoyable with a hearty Spicy Mutton Curry (मटणाचा रस्सा). So here is my take on a slightly different take on spicy mutton curry.

Ingredients:

Goat meat /Mutton 1kg, ginger garlic paste 1tabsp, onions 2medium finely chopped, garlic crushed 7 -8 cloves.
Dry spices – turmeric 1tsp, pachkalshi masala (SKP) 4 – 5 tsp, coriander cumin powder 1 tabsp.

Vaatan (masala paste) fresh coconut grated 2tabsp, dry coconut grated 2 tabsp, red chillies dry 4/5, garam masala 1tsp, cardamom 4-5 and 2 bay leaves.

Oil 100grm, salt to taste. Coriander leaves for garnish.

Method:

In a bowl mix the dry spices – turmeric, red masala and coriander cumin powder with the mutton. Add ginger garlic paste and massage well in the meat. Set aside for a couple of hours.

Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan, add garlic. Saute for less than a minute and then add onions. Stir fry till it turns pink and translucent. Now add the marinated meat to it. Stir fry the meat on high flame for 5 mins till the oil separates. Add 500 morning of warm water. Season it with salt. Bring it to a boil and simmer it with lid on. Cook till tender.

Till the meat cooks we prepare the vaatan ( curry paste) . In a work heat a tabsp of oil and tamper bay leaves, cardamom and red chillis. Add fresh and dry coconut and roast for 2/3 minutes. Add garam masala. Transfer it to a mixer and grind it into a fine paste.

Add this ground paste to the mutton curry and bring it to a boil. Garnish with coriander leaves. Serve hot with Roti, Rice, Ghavan etc the choice is endless and so is the level of enjoyment.

N.

Kheema Akrod Karanji (Ukdiche)

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Kheema (mince) Akrod (walnuts) karanji (calzone) Ukdiche kheema Akrod Karanji is one of the most liked appetizer for parties at my place. One can eat this without guilt simply because I use minimal oil for making the stuffing and steam it instead of deep frying. So here is my take on this recipe.

Ingredients:

Stuffing-

Chicken kheema 200 grams, onion 1 medium finely chopped, ginger garlic paste 1tsp, turmeric 1/2 tap, chilli powder 2tsp, coriander cumin powder 2tsp, garam masala powder 1/2tsp, cardamom powder 1/4th tsp, salt to taste, oil 2tabsp, chopped green coriander, lemon juice 1tabsp, chopped walnuts 3tabsp.

Cover-

Rice flour 1heaped cup, water 1cup, a pinch of salt and oil 1tsp.

Method:

Heat oil and sauté onions till translucent, add ginger garlic paste and the rest of the dry spices. Stir for a minute and add the mince. Season it with salt and stir on high flame. (The mince has water and fat content so do not add water) cover it and cook it for 15mins on low heat. Garnish with chopped coriander, walnuts and a dash of lemon.

For the cover, heat water in a pan and season it with salt and oil. Once it comes to a boil add rice flour. Mix well and cover it with the lid. Shut the heat and let it rest till it cools though not completely.

Stuffing and making the karanji-

Now knead the rice flour into a smooth dough and divide them into lemon size balls. Roll each ball into approximate 5 inches circle. Place the rolled rice flour dough in a karanji mould and fill a tabsp of mince walnuts fillings. Press the mould to seal the karanji. Place these karanji into a steamer and cook it further for 5 mins. Serve hot with mint or garlic chutney.

If you do not have a mould on can just twist and seal the rolled dough into semicircular to make it into a karanji form.

N.

Shevayi / Rice Noodles in sweet coconut milk.

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Shevayi is the most popular dessert after Ukdiche Modak in coastal Maharashtra. Simple rice noodles bathing in sweetened coconut milk is pure indulgence. My husband’s Nani’s house being in Alibaug… this is one of his favorite dessert. Hence cracked the recipe to Pamper my hubster.

Ingredients: (serves 8)

Coconut 1, rice flour 2 cups, ghee a tabsp, salt to taste, jaggery 1/2 cup, cardamom powder 1tsp.

Method:

Coconut milk –

Grate 1coconut, add 1/2cups of water, add the jaggery and blend it through. Sieve the milk by pressing the coconut mixture through the sieve. This is the first extract. Repeat the same process to get another extract. Keep it in the fridge.

Rice Noodles –

Boil 4cups of water, add ghee and season it with salt, bring it to a boil. Add the rice flour and mix it with a spatula. Cover it and keep it at rest for half an hour. After cooled knead the rice flour into a smooth dough. Make cylindrical shape and transfer into the noodles maker( the same Machine used for making shev/ chakli). Make small batches of thin rice noodles and place them in a steamer. Steam it for 5 mins.

OR

Another method of making noodles is after kneading the steamed rice flour into a dough, make small balls (lemon size). In a pot boil water and immerse the rice flour balls, boil it till it floats. Strain it. Then transfer into the Noodle maker and make thin noodles. Pour sweetened coconut milk over the noodles and serve.

Serving – place the noodles in a shallow bowl and pour the sweet coconut milk over it. Garnish with a pinch of cardamom powder.

Enjoy the heavenly गोड शेवया !

N.

Nalli Nihari

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Nalli Nihari is a spicy slow cooked stew of lamb shanks. An authentic Mughlai delicacy has originated in India. Traditionally it is cooked in very low heat preferably on a sigdi overnight and relished in the morning for breakfast. This dish is known for it’s spiciness and distinct taste.

So here is my take on the famous Nalli Nihari…

Ingredients :

Lamb shanks 1 kg, ghee 7tabsp, ginger garlic paste 3tabsp, thick curds 2 cup, chilli powder 2 tabsp, turmeric powder 1tsp, coriander cumin powder 2tabsp, Nihari masala 4tabsp, salt to taste, fried onions 1 1/2 cups, bay leaves 2/3, wheat flour 2 heaped tabsp.

Nihari Masala –

Dried chillies 5, ball chillies 8, fennel seeds 2tabsp, cloves 1tabsp, cardamom 12, mace 1 blade, nutmeg powder 1/2tsp, cinnamon 2inches, chana dal 2tabsp, star anise 1, peppercones 10, poppy seeds 2tsp.

Roast the above ingredients on low heat till they turn slight brown and grind it into fine powder.

Method:

Marinate the meat/shanks with ginger garlic paste and curds and keep it aside for an hour. Heat ghee and tamper bay leaves and ball chillies. Add the marinated shanks and pan roast non high flame till they turn slightly brown. Add the dry spices – chilli powder, turmeric, coriander cumin powder, Nihari Masala. Blend in with the meat and stir fry till the oil separates. Add a litre of water. Add fried onions. Season it with salt. Bring it to a boil and then reduce the heat to very low. Slow cook for at least 3 hours stirring occasionally. Mix the wheat flour with a little water to make a slurry and add to thicken the curry. The meat should fall off the bone.

(My twist – separate the cooked meat in a serving dish, run a hand blender in the curry and strain it for a smooth stew)

Garnish with a strand of coriander. Serve hot with Naan.

N.

Ghee Roast Chicken

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Ghee Roast Chicken is one of my favorite. Spicy and rich semi dry chicken pan roasted is an all time favorite during the meet ups. Sharing this recipe and hitting the 250th mark of recipe on my blog.

Ingredients:

Chicken legs and breast cut into medium pieces 1kg, ginger garlic paste 2 tabsp. whole garam masala (cloves, cinnamon, fennel seeds, pepper, cardamom, star anise and mace 2/3 each ) fried onions 1cup, dry coconut 1/2cup, bay leaves 2/3. Dried red chilli 2/3. Ghee 5/6 tabsp, salt to taste. Turmeric 1tsp, coriander cumin powder 2tsp, chat masala 1tsp, jaggery or palm sugar 1tabsp, red chilli powder 2/3 tsp. Oil 2tabsp. Curry leaves and coriander leaves for garnish.

Method:

Heat oil in a wok tamper it with whole garam masala, coconut and half cup fried onions. Roast till brown and after it cools grind it into paste.

Heat ghee in a heavy bottom pan and tamper it with bay leaves and chillies. Add chicken on high flame and roast it till golden. Add the masala paste, ginger garlic paste, dry spices – turmeric, chilli powder, coriander cumin powder and fried onions. Blend in with the chicken. Add a cup of water. Season it with salt and palm sugar. Cover it and lower the heat. Cook till it becomes tender. If watery turn the heat high and let it dry. Garnish with chat masala, fried curry leaves and chopped coriander leaves. Serve hot.

N.

Kaju Katli

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With the upcoming ebook on the “Mithais of India” by the FBAI…I got inspired to post this recipe. My daughters favorite Mithai – Kaju Katli. It’s one of the easiest and quickest Mithai one can make at home. I avoid the market one simply because I am not a fan of the silver (so called) paper they garnish on the Mithai. Instead I just sprinkle the magic dust ( what I call ) that is the edible glitter which I use for cakes. So here is my take on Kaju Katli.

Ingredients:

Cashew nuts 300 grms, milk powder 50 grms, sugar 220 grm, water 1 1/4 cups, ghee 1 tabsp, cardamom powder 1/2 tsp. Edible glitter optional.

Method:

Make a very fine powder of cashew nuts. Make sure to pulse the grinder otherwise the cashews tend to clump up. Sieve the powder in a bowl. Now add the milk powder and cardamom powder ( we want a very subtle flavour so do not use too much of it). Mix well. The mixture becomes light and fluffy.

In a heavy bottom flat pan boil the water and sugar to make 2 strings syrup. Keep a close watch as we do not want raw or over heated syrup. Stop as soon as you see 2 strings between yours fingers when you test the consistency. Shut the heat. Now add the cashew mix powder and stir well. Leave it for half an hour in the hot pan. Transfer the mix of cashews and sugar on a thick food grade plastic sheet. And knead till it has no cracks. The dough should be smooth. Using a rolling pin and a top cover of plastic roll the Kaju dough in a rectangular shape. The thickness shouldn’t be too thin nor too thick. 1/2 a centimeter. Apply ghee and sprinkle the edible glitter. Leave it to set for a couple of hours. Cut into diamond shape.

Enjoy the barfi/ Kaju Katli.

N.