Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Restokitch Holi Special Indo-Western Fusion Food Fest

Hello All,

I am back, this time, with a contest entry for the Restokitch Indo-Western Fusion Food Fest entry.

And my entry is: Cheese stuffed lauki capsicum kofta (served with with mac and cheese and garlic toast))

Bottle gourd isn't a vegetable which is a favourite among most people. It often gets ostracized as the 'squishy' vegetable that tastes of nothing! So, I took it upon myself to make something yummy with it and a cheese stuffed melt-in-mouth kofta sounded just about right for the job! ;)

Compulsory ingredients:

1. Maida (4 tbsp)
2. Onions (1 medium sized)
3. Garlic (6-7 cloves)
4. Eggs (2)

Additional ingredients:

1. Besan (chick pea flour) - 200 g
2. Lauki (bottle gourd) - 400 g
3. Capsicum - 1 small size

Optional ingredients:

1. Mozzarella cheese
2. Mushrooms
3. Macaroni
4. Pizza seasoning (for mac and cheese)
5. Butter
6. Milk
7. Bread (additionally, for serving garlic toast on the side)
8. Oil (for sauteing vegetables)
9. Green chillies
10. Salt
11. Atta (3 tbsp)

For the koftas:

In a small pan, heat 3-4 tbsp of oil and add finely chopped garlic to it. Once it starts browning, add onions and saute till onion is golden brown. Set aside. In a bowl, grate lauki and squeeze out the additional water. Grate half the capsicum and add it to the lauki. To this bowl, add 2 eggs, maida, besan, salt, finely chopped green chillies and the sauteed onion-garlic. Add a little water, if necessary (I didn't need to, this was a sticky paste) to bring it to a sticky consistency.

Cut mozzarella block into 2 x 2 x 2 cm cubes and keep ready.

In an appam tawa (you can do it in a skillet too, but i prefer my appam tawa), add oil to the sections and add about half teaspoon of the kofta mix. Once half cooked, press the mozzarella block into it.

Once a bit cooked, add another half spoon on top to make a 'sandwich' of mozzarella in the kofta. Fry them till they are cooked on both sides and remove to put on tissue.

I love to make mac and cheese to go with anything, so here goes my mac and cheese.......

In a non-stick pan (I prefer these are burnt and stuck food isn't a problem here), add about 50 gm  of butter. Once it melts, add the 3 tbsp atta (you can use maida too, but I prefer atta) and stir till no lumps remain. Add 1 litre of milk and 100 g grated mozzarella to the atta and stir very fast. This will make sure there are no lumps. Add the remaining vegetables (onions, capsicum, sauteed lightly) to this and add boiled and strained macaroni. 

FOr the cheesy garlic toast, I've taken two bread slices and sandwiched a thin mozzarella slice with some finely chopped garlic and a little pizza seasoning. Roast on a non-stick tawa (or grill/bake) and it's ready to accompany your yummy cheese-stuffed koftas.......

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Steamed spinach besan (chickpea flour) sabji

Hello All,

Welcome to the blog, and apologies for disappearing yet again. I made this sabji long long ago but got around to posting the recipe only today (ah! the perils of entrepreneurship)!

This is a simple and tasty (and elegantly sneaky!) way to get a lot of spinach into anyone who claims they don't like it. Here we go!


Spinach - 1 bundle
Besan (chickpea flour) ~ 4 tbsp
Onions - 3
Garlic paste (optional) - 1 tbsp
Green chilli - 1
Salt - to taste
Oil - 6 tbsp
Turmeric - 1 tsp
Cumin seeds and asafoetida (for tadka/sauteing)
Groundnuts - optional

Heat about 2 tbsp oil in a shallow vessel (I prefer non-stick cookware)

Chop the chilli coarsely

Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds and asafoetida

Add garlic paste (or chopped garlic, if you prefer that) and the chilli to the oil. Roast for a short while

Add the spinach, salt and turmeric

Cook until the spinach is soft and dark green in colour

Add it to the mixer and grind it fine

This is how it will look (note: it reduces in size a lot but use a big jar to accommodate the besan you'll be adding later).

Add about 100 g besan, water and grind to a smooth paste (it should be the consistency of molten chocolate, not too runny, not too thick).

Now, chop the onions coarsely and divide roughly into two equal portions

Add oil and once hot, add asafoetida, cumin seeds and onions

While the onions get brown, grease a flat vessel (I prefer the back of my plate as it's convenient later on)

Add the spinach besan paste to the sauteed onions

Stir vigorously and continuously to avoid formation of lumps.

Once it becomes a sticky ball in the centre of the vessel (and that's why, I prefer non-stick cookware), put it on the greased plate and spread out flat. Allow to cool to room temperature.

Once it has cooled down, cut into finger size pieces using a blunt butter knife.

Add some oil to a shallow vessel 

And saute the onions 

Add groundnuts and roast until groundnuts are dark brown

Add the steamed spinach-besan chunks and roast till the edges of the chunks get sligthly brown

YUMMY spinach-besan sabji is ready.

Approximate cooking time 40 mins

Friday, April 4, 2014

Leftover Bread to Good Use - Spicy Bread Pudding

Hello All,

Sometimes, you just don't want to eat that slightly stale bread, right? How about putting them to good use in the form of a spicy pudding, with vegetables and eggs thrown in? Complete nutrition, protein, vitamins, carbohydrates and well...........yummy too! For the non-veggies, boiled chicken pieces can make a great addition too. This recipe is not really my own. It's my take on the one invented by Payal Upreti. :)

So, here is the photo tutorial (I agree, they aren't great pictures but I guess, they will serve the purpose).....

You'll need vegetables of your choice. I always throw in some olives and jalapenos as they are a favourite in the house :) Seen here are coarsely chopped capsicum (half is enough), sweet corn, sliced tomatoes, chopped green chillies and sliced onions

You'll need leftover bread and 6 eggs (this is for 4 servings, so, about an egg and a half per person).

Get everything together. Break eggs in a bowl and add your choice of spices. Mine are salt, Peri-peri and Pizza Seasoning (a universal choice for anything spicy). Cut the bread into smaller pieces to be able to put them in the baking dish better packed. I add aluminium foil to the base so that the pudding can come off clean after baking. It's purely optional. 

Layer the base of the tin with bread pieces

Next come tomatoes (try to keep the juicier slices of tomatoes at the base as juicy slices on top can make the bread soggy before it starts baking, leading to a gooey pudding).

Next some capsicum, onion and sweet corn. Make your own order of layers or just randomly arrange.....

In my pudding, olives and jalapenos always make it to the top! :D But you can try your own combinations....

Now, pour the egg mix from top. Do it slowly as it trickles down into the layers slowly. Pour evenly all over the layers.....

Bake at 170 degrees for about 45 mins or till you start seeing a uniform white all over and the vegetables on top have a nice roasted look.

Serve hot with your choice of sauces. Mine have forever been Habanero (by Tabasco) and Barbecue sauces :)

Happy Cooking :)