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Sunday, January 8, 2017

Gajar Halwa/Carrot Halwa

Both my kids love carrot Halwa. It's been a while I didn't get a chance to make this Halwa. I found Delhi Red Carrots and was really tempted to make Halwa using them as it's a beautiful color and they are really juicy.
Final outcome of this Halwa was just amazing. Loved it.

Preparation Time: 30 minutes 
Cook Time: 50 minutes 
Serves : 5-6


Grated Carrot: 4 cups (1 kg)
Ghee : 2 tablespoons 
Milk: 4 cups
Khoya/Khova; 2/3 cup
Sugar : 2/3 cup
Cardamom powder : 1 teaspoon 
Nuts : 1/3 cup (cashews, almonds and pistachios)


Heat ghee in a pan and add grated carrots and sauté for 5-6 minutes. Stir occasionally.
Add milk, mix well and bring it to a boil. Cook until all the water and milk is evaporated. It too me 40 minutes. (It depends on the carrots)
Keep stirring occasionally and make sure to scrape the sides and the bottom.
Add Khova and stir to blend. Cook for 5 minutes.
Add sugar and let it melt, stir frequently.
Add cardamom powder and let the halwa thicken. (It should take another 4-5 minutes)
Turn off the stove. Heat ghee in a small pan and fry almonds and cashews.
Add them and pistachios to the halwa and stir.
Serve warm or cold.

Spicy Garlic Roasted Potatoes

I found these cute little baby potatoes in the supermarket, so bought them immediately. Love roasted potatoes, made them spicy this time.
It's a super easy dish to make. It's going to a family favorite soon.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Bake Time: 25 minutes
Serves : 4-5


Baby Potatoes: 1 kg
Fresh red chilies: 4
Garlic: 8 cloves roughly chopped
Ground Cumin : 1/2 teaspoon
Fresh rosemary: 5 sprigs (If using dry rosemary, 1 teaspoon)
Olive oil : 1 tablespoon
Salt to taste


Take red chilies and ground cumin in a blender and make into paste.
Heat oil in a pan and add roughly chopped garlic. Fry for 1 minute.
Add red chili paste and rosemary and fry for 1 minute.
Add washed and cleaned potatoes, salt  to the pan and toss well.
Turn off the stove and add these potatoes to a greased baking pan.
Pre heat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Bake the potatoes for 25 minutes.
Serve hot as a side dish.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Western or Denver Omelet

Denver Omelet is a thick omelet made with onions, green peppers and ham.  I substituted the ham with broccoli. It's made in a frying pan, so really easy to make. Kids loved it as breakfast.
Found this amazing recipe in joy of baking 75th edition cookbook. I'm sending this recipe to Cooking from a cookbook challenge. 

Preparation Time: 10 minutes 
Cook Time: 15 minutes 
Serves : 2
Source : Joy of baking 75th edition 


Butter : 1 tablespoon
Onion : 1 medium chopped finely
Green bell pepper: 1 medium chopped finely
Broccoli: 1/2 cup chopped finely
Eggs : 4 large
Milk : 1 tablespoon
Ground black pepper: 1/2 teaspoon 
Salt : 1/4 teaspoon 


Heat butter in a fry pan, add onions, green peppers and sauté for 8-10 minutes until they are soft. 
Add broccoli and sauté for 2 minutes.
Meanwhile, add eggs, milk, salt pepper and beat gently.
Add this egg mixture to the veggies and leave it for 30 seconds.
Use a wooden spatula and slowly move the egg mixture to the middle.
Cook for 2 minutes and flip the omelet and cook it for 1 minute.
Don't let the omelet brown. Turn off the stove and serve hot.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Chayote Squash/Chow Chow curry

Chayote is a fruit that belongs to gourd family. It's also called as chow-chow. Chayote is a good source of vitamin C. Chayote fruit is used mostly cooked forms. It can stir fried but I made a curry of this fruit.
The skin has to be peeled off before cooking. Once the skin is peeled, it's really slimy. So, grease your hands before peeling. When peeled and cut in half, remove the seed.

Preparation Time: 15 minutes 
Cook Time: 15 minutes 
Serves : 4


Chayote: 1 cup peeled and chopped
Turmeric: 1/2 teaspoon 
Coriander powder: 1 teaspoon 
Coriander leaves/cilantro: to garnish
Water : 1 cup
Salt to taste 

To Roast and grind :
Oil : 1 teaspoon 
Red chilies: 8
Chana dal : 1 teaspoon 
Urad dal : 1 teaspoon 
Cumin seeds : 1/2 teaspoon 
Onions : 3 medium chopped 
Tomatoes: 2 large chopped 

For Tempering:
Mustard seeds : 1 teaspoon 
Red chilies: 2 broken 
Curry leaves: 1 sprig

Method :

Take chayote, turmeric and salt in a sauce pan with water and cook till they are soft. Now, drain the water and keep it aside.
Heat oil in a pan and add all ingredients listed under roast and grind. Roast them for 2-3 minutes and turn off the stove.  Add onions and sauté till they turn light brown. Add tomatoes and cook till they are soft. Cool them off, add the mixture in a blender and grind into a powder. Add little water and grind again to make a coarse paste.
Heat oil in a pan, add ingredients listed under for Tempering and fry for 30 seconds.
Add cooked chayote and cook for 3 minutes.
Add the ground masala, salt and water. Bring it to a boil and cook till the gravy is thick.
Turn off the stove and garnish with cilantro.
Serve hot with rice or roti.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

kerala Style Shrimp/Prawns Fry

Love the seafood dishes in Kerala style. Addition of the spice blend and coconut gives the dishes a unique taste. My son is a favorite of shrimp, he loved this dish. I just served it with plain white rice and some Rasam.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes 
Cook Time: 20 minutes 
Serves : 2-3


Shrimp : 500 grams (de veined and cleaned)
Green chilies: 8 chopped
Red onion : 2 medium chopped 
Curry leaves: 4 sprigs
Ginger garlic paste: 1 tablespoon 
Coconut powder: 5 tablespoons 
Ground Pepper: 2 teaspoons
Red chili powder: 2 teaspoons
Turmeric: 1 teaspoon 
Salt to taste 


Take the shrimp in a bowl and add turmeric, pepper, salt, half of the ginger garlic paste, 4 green chilies, red chili powder and mix well. Marinate for 15 minutes.
Heat oil in a pan, add curry leaves and onions. Sauté till they turn golden brown. 
Add ginger garlic paste and fry for 1 minute. Add green chilies and fry for 30 seconds.
Add the shrimp mixture and fry for 15 minutes.
Add coconut powder and fry for 2 minutes. 
Turn off the stove and serve hot with rice.

Mangalore Vegetable Biryani

I'm constantly in search of simple Biryani and Pulav recipes as they make a good weeknight dinner and are perfect for lunch boxes. I came across the mangalore Vegetable Biryani where fresh ground spices with coconut is added.
I modified to fit our family needs and kids loved it. My son took this biryani to school and his friend group ate majority of his box.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Serves : 3


Basmati Rice : 2 cups
Onion : 2 large sliced
Tomatoes : 2 medium chopped
Carrots: 3 diced
Beans : 8-10 chopped
Potatoes: 2 large diced
Ginger garlic paste: 1 tablespoon
Water : 3 1/4 cups
Ghee : 1 tablespoon
Oil : 2 tablespoons
Salt to taste

For Masala:

Coconut powder : 4 tablespoons
Coriander seeds : 2 tablespoon
Dry red chilies: 7
Cinnamon: 1" stick
Fennel seeds : 1 teaspoon
Green cardamom/Elachi : 5
Cloves : 7
Cumin seeds : 1 teaspoon


Wash and soak basmati Rice for 30 minutes.
Take all the ingredients listed under masala (you can dry roast but not necessary) and grind into a fine powder.
Heat oil and ghee in a vessel or cooker. Add onions and sauté till they are golden.
Add tomatoes and cook them till they turn mushy.
Add ginger garlic paste and the masala powder, mix well and cook for 1 minute.
Add the veggies and cook for 4 minutes.
Add water, salt and drained rice.
Close lid and place a steel glass on the top of the cooker where the whistle goes.
Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes until the rice is done. Simmer and cook for 3 minutes.
Turn off the stove and let the rice rest for 5 minutes before opening the lid.
Fluff up the rice with a fork and serve hot with some raita.

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