Monday, June 29, 2009

Avacado Salad

I love to include salads in my meals. Recently I tried Avacados and i simply loved this fruit. Avacado, is a fruit similar to a pear in shape but has a large oval shaped seed inside. It also has a proper way of cutting this fruit. These are grown in Mexico and the famous Guacamoule used in Mexican food is made from Avacados.
I tried this salad giving it an Indian touch to it and we loved it. It can also be served as a side dish.
For selecting Avacados and to check if they are ripe, press it slowly with your thumb and if it gets pressed softly, its ripe and ready to use.
You would need -
Ingredients -
1) 1 Avacado peeled and cut into pieces.
2) 1 small tomato chopped finely
3) 1 small onion chopped finely
4) 2-3 springs of sping onion chopped finely
5) 2 green chillies chopped finely
6) A bunch of cilantro to garnish
7) Salt, black pepper and cumin-coriander powder to taste
Method -
Add all the ingredients except the Avacados to a mixing bowl and mix well. Add Avacados and just give them a quick mix. This prevents them from smashing.
This salad is healthy and nutritious and now i have Avacados regularly in my pantry!

Lasun/Garlic Chutney

Lasunachi Chutney and Bhakri(a flat bread made of jowar flour) is a staple diet of the farmers in Maharashtra, India. The rural people of Maharashtra are simple and they eat food which is also simple. After the hard working day in the sun, they look forward to this lunch which is Jowar Bhakri, Lasanachi Chutney and a couple of onions smashed with a fist. And with this they are all set to work again in the fields.
Lasun Chutney can also be eaten in various forms. I like it to spread over bread with some butter. It can be eaten simply as a condiment with the meal. Some also like to add a teaspoon of yogurt in the chutney and have it with chapati.
I usually make this chutney and store it in an air tight container. This lasts for almost a week or 10 days. Here is what you need -
Ingredients -
1) 8-10 garlic cloves
2) 1/4 cup peanuts
3) 1/2 cup dry shredded coconut
4) 1 tspn red chilli powder. (I had some chilli flakes so I used those instead)
5) Salt
Method -
1) Heat a pan and dry roast the cloves, coconut and peanuts seperately.
2) Put all the ingredients in the grinder. Add red chilli powder and salt to taste. And grind it.
Chutney is ready!!

Thursday, June 25, 2009


I am very fond of salads and I try to include as much salads as i can in my meal. If I am short of time I simply cut some cucumbers, carrots and tomatoes and have it as a salad. Or then Another option for me is Koshimbir. Koshimbir, a simple tomato-cucumber salad. Very easy to make and you will find this in every Maharashtrian homes for dinner.
Ingredients -
1) 1 cucumber chopped finely.
2) 1 tomato chopped finely.
3) 2-3 green chillies finely chopped.
4) 2 tbspn roasted peanut powder.
5) Salt and Sugar to taste.
6) A handful of cilantro finely chopped.
Method -
Mix all the above ingredients together to make this salad. So, simple and quick.

Palak Dal

This was an awesome dish I tried today. Its very easy and healthy and also a good change than our usual simple dal. Here is what you need -
Ingredients -
1) 1 cup spinach washed and chopped finely.
2) 1 cup toor dal washed and soaked in water.
3) 2-3 dry red chillies.
4) 2-3 garlic cloves.
5) 1 small onion chopped finely.
6) mustard seeds, cumin seeds, asafoetida and turmeric powder for seasoning.
7) Oil and salt to taste.
Method -
1) Pressure cook the Toor Dal.
2) Heat oil in a skillet and do the seasoning. Then add the red chillies and garlic and saute them for some more time.
3) Add onions and saute them for about a couple of minutes.
4) Add spinach. Mix well. Cover the lid and let it cook for some time.
5) Now add the cooked Toor Dal. Mix well and add water according to the desired consistency.
6) Add salt and let it boil for some time.
Palak Dal is ready. Serve hot with chapatis. Enjoy!!!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Vegetable Biryani

This was an unplanned dish. I made this last saturday. I am always searching for some new recipes which can be made on weekends. My idea of weekend lunch/brunch is that it should be quick to make, simple and should be sufficient enough for lunch and dinner. This recipe came in my mind. I quickly made the vegetable masala, fried some goodies and baked the dish. It was awesome and perfect. Here is what you need -
For the rice -
Ingredients -
1) 2 cups rice
2) 4 cups warm water
3) a pinch of saffron mixed in 1 tbspn warm milk
4) Salt
Method -
1) Wash and drain the rice.
2) Boil the rice in warm water till the rice is cooked.
3) Cool the rice and add the saffron and mix gently. Keep aside.
For the goodies -
Ingredients -
1) 2 medium potatoes cubed
2) 3 medium onions sliced lengthwise
3) 1/4 cup cashew nuts and rasins
4) Oil for frying
Method -
1) Heat oil in a skillet and fry the potatoes till they are slightly brown.
2) Now fry the onions and drain them on the paper towel.
3) Fry the cashews and rasins just for 10-20 seconds and drain on the paper towel.
The frying goodies are ready!!
Now, lets see whats needed for the masala -
Ingredients -
1) 1 cup vegetables of your choice. I used the frozen packet of mixed vegetables
2) 2 medium onions
3) 2 medium tomatoes
4) 3-4 garlic cloves and 1 inch ginger
5) 3-4 green chillies
6) a bunch of washed cilantro
7) 1 tspn red chilli powder and cumin-coriander powder each
8) Oil and salt to taste
Method -
1) Steam the vegetables.
2) Mix everything except the powders in a blender and grind it to a smooth paste.
3) Heat oil in a skillet and add the blended mixture to it.
4) Cover the lid and let it cook for sometime. Stir occassionally in between.
5) Once the oil starts leaving the masala, add the powders and saute for one more minute.
6) Add the steamed vegetables, salt. Cover and let it cook for sometime. Do not overcook the veggies. Let them be tender.
The Vegetable Masala is ready!

Layering the Biryani

1) Take a baking dish and grease it with oil or ghee.
2) Now, add half of the rice followed by the goodies.
3) Then, add the whole vegetable masala followed by the remaining rice and the goodies on top.
4) Cover it with an aluminium foil and bake the dish in the oven preheated at 400 degrees F for about 30 to 40 minutes.
Serve it hot with raita and Enjoy!
You can also layer the biryani and store it in the refrigerator before baking.