I started eating aubergines quite late in my life. I will never forget the day when our neighbor aunty had made some and given to my mom. Till that time, my mom was the only one who used to be interested in the bharit. The aroma of the bharit pulled me towards it and for the first time in my life, I tasted it. It was divine! I wonder how I ever stayed away from the smoked and mashed aubergine preparation that we lovingly call bharit in marathi. There are quite a lot of variations when it comes to vangyacha bharit, but this is how I make it, in a most simplistic manner ever possible.
- 1 elongated aubergine (There is a special variety that you use for making a bharit, in Maharashtra, there is a green variety in the normal bharit aubergine, which is what I use frequently; I have used the same today)
- 5 cloves of garlic, stamped upon and roughly chopped
- Green peas, boiled, as much as you like
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 3 green chilies
- A handful of coriander leaves
To make the Vangyacha Bharit:
- Place the aubergine that is poked by a fork at several places and rubbed with some oil on a naked flame. Roast it from all sides.
- Put it in a bowl and cover it so that the outer burnt skin would come off easily later.
- When you are roasting the aubergine, roast 2-3 chilies with it.
- Grind the roasted chilies, some garlic and some coriander leaves with a pinch of salt, preferably in a mortar and pestle. If you grind in a mixer, grind coarsely, barely for a minute.
- In a pan, heat some oil, add and saute chopped garlic. To this, add the green chili-garlic-coriander leaves mixture and saute.
- Add chopped onions and saute till they become translucent.
- Peel and mash the aubergine coarsely. You need not turn it into a paste, just ensure there are no long threads in the skin. Let it be more like a pulp that a smooth paste.
- Mix the mashed aubergine in the pan and cook for 5-10 mins.
- Add salt and check seasoning, serve hot with hot bhakris/polis.
Tip: If you are a big fan of garlic, like me, you can add a bit of chopped garlic when you mash the aubergine and then mix in the hot pan. You get a slight taste of raw garlic, which goes fantastically well with the smokey bharit. I also add chopped coriander leaves as I like them a bit raw as well 🙂
Garlic Butter Rolls
So I came across this Indian blogger and her bread recipe, which she made in microwave.She in turn had actually referred to My Singapore Kitchen for the original recipe. This recipe is without egg and most special to me cos I baked for the first time in my life and it actually turned out wonderful.
I am sharing the photographs and will follow up with my recipe soon. Was too exited to share this as soon as possible.
Have a rocking Monday!
I love Pasta. I love Italian, and I love Ravioli. So, today I am at my first attempt at making fresh, home-cooked Ravioli. Now Ravioli are sheets of pasta, stuffed with any stuffing that you like, with a sauce to go with it. So I decided to make Tomato Mint Ravioli in White Wine Sauce today. I am kinda in a middle of making the recipe so I am just sharing the images right now. A detailed recipe will follow 🙂
You know what I realized, making your own pasta (at least for ravioli) is much better, though a little time -consuming than ready-to-use products.
Ingredients captured raw
First stuffed ravioli! I am so proud now
Tomato mint stuffing
Stuffed ravioli ready to go in the sauce
Here is my Tomato Mint Ravioli in White Wine Sauce recipe:
For the Ravioli:
- Knead a dough out of 2 cups of flour (All-purpose) and 1 egg, salt to taste and 4 mint leaves shredded finely and 1 cup water (or as required to make a dough ball). I wanted mint in my ravioli stuffing as well as in the ravioli packets.
- Make a nice dough ball and put it in a plastic bag, seal and refrigerate for 1 hour. You can make the stuffing in the meantime.
- After an hour, roll out the pasta dough into thin sheets no thicker than a coin. Add the stuffing on the dough by teaspoonfuls about one inch apart. Cover the filling with the top sheet of pasta, pressing out the air from around each portion of filling. Press firmly around the filling to seal. Cut into individual ravioli with a knife or pizza cutter. Seal the edges.
- Fill a large pot with lightly salted water and bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Stir in the ravioli, and return to a boil. Cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the ravioli float to the top and the filling is hot, 4 to 8 minutes. Drain well.
For the Stuffing:
- Chop one onion, three ripe tomatoes, a couple of mint leaves finely.
- In a pan, add finely olive oil and fry some finely chopped garlic and mint.
- Add onions, saute till they become translucent and then add the tomatoes. Cook them till the tomatoes are well done.
- Add some pasta sauce or simply sprinkle with red chilli flakes, oregano, salt and pepper.
- Mix the stuffing well and let it cook for some time.
- Add the stuffing in the ravioli and cook it as shown in the steps above.
For the Sauce:
- Make white sauce the way it is always done! You can add some garlic flakes finely chopped too.
- Add a dash of white wine to the sauce and stir till it blends well in to the sauce.
To assemble in a plate:
- In a plate, place two-three ravioli packets, pour some white sauce, generously over the ravioli and add a mint leaf.
- Serve hot.
If you notice, I have not used cheese anywhere in the recipe. I was in a no-cheese mood that day. You may add cheese in the sauce, or in the stuffing anywhere and at any stage that you want.
Kerala Egg Stew
I am a huge fan of Chris Saleem’s cooking. I try out his recipes every now and then. This is his version of the Kerala Egg Stew.
A stew is veggies cooked in any liquid. In South Indian cooking, vegetables, meat, fish etc. are cooked in coconut milk. This adds a very distinct flavor to the food. Normally these stews are eaten with starchy items such as rice, appams, idlis etc.
- Boiled Eggs: 4
- Coconut Milk: 1 cup
- Bell peppers
- Baby Corn
- Curry Leaves
- Bay leaves
- Green Chillies
- Salt and Pepper
How to stew the veggies:
- Boil the eggs and keep them aside.
- Boil baby corn and potatoes and cut them into dices.
- Dice all the bell peppers and de-seeded tomatoes.
- Slice the onions into fine pieces.
- In a pan, heat oil and add all the spices such as mustard seeds, curry leaves, green chillies and bay leaves. Saute for a minute.
- Add sliced onions and let them cook till pink.
- Add all the vegetables, let them fry for a minute or two and add some water and let them cook for 10 mins, covered.
- Once the potatoes, carrots, bell peppers are cooked, add salt and pepper to taste.
- Add some coconut milk and let the curry simmer on a low flame.
- Add half-sliced boiled eggs and let them stay in the stew for 10 mins. Once the entire curry is cooked, serve it hot with appams or rice.
Tip: Do not boil the curry after adding the coconut milk.
I am scared of making white sauce. I donno why, as I am generally not scared of doing experiments in my kitchen (ask my husband 😉 ). Yet, today I made awesome (certified by DH) pasta in white sauce.
Before sharing the recipe, lemme just share the photo.
Pasta in WhiteSauce
I love pasta. I love tomatoes. I love Olive Oil. I love wine. Sometimes I wonder why I wasn’t born as an Italian. Well, I guess God wanted me to appreciate all tastes and all cuisines, so he increased my palette by making me an Indian :).
I learned this recipe from a friend who had come over once and I make this on all special occasions. My husband is also fond of this one.
- Pasta (I prefer farfalle) – 1 cup
- Thousand Island Dressing
- Lettuce/Salad leaves shredded in random ways 1 cup
- Cherry tomatoes cut into halves 6-7
- Chopped Olives, green/black – 1/2 cup
- Boiled sweet corn – 1/2 cup
- Bell peppers diced : Red and Yellow – 1/2 cup
- Carrots diced – 1/2 cup
- (Optional) Basil leaves – a handful
How to prepare:
- Boil pasta for 8-10 minutes until it is al-dente. Farfalle takes a minute or two more as the part where the bow is joined takes longer time to cook.
- Once boiled, drain pasta & keep it aside.
- In a salad bowl, add all the vegetables (you can add any vegetables you want).
- Add two tablespoons Thousand Island Dressing, add more till it coats the pasta and veggies well.
- Toss in some basil leaves on top for effect.
- Refrigerate for an hour or two before serving. This salad tasted best cold. 🙂
- Lick the bowl once you finish the pasta.
This is my idea of a happy meal!
Potato-cheese curry and stuffed tomato
Recipe to be shared in some time – I am busy making gul polis and my granny’s recipe of cauliflower stir-fry with loads of butter.
January is the celebration of new year. For Maharastrians the new year brings on a new festival – Makar Sankrant! This is a time to eat all nice and fresh vegetables, fruits and other heat-generating food items that we cannot have for the rest of the year.
One such traditional delicacy that we make on this day is – Gul Poli (Jaggery Pancakes).
Every year my mother used to make them for us when we were kids and she used to actually make so much that we could eat this one for days. I and my sister Shilpa, both loved sweets and gul poli was something that we could eat only once a year. After my marriage, this is the first time I tried gul poli at home for me and my husband and surprisingly it turned out amazingly well! Therefore sharing the recipe.
Jaggery 2 cups
Besan 2 tbsp
Sesame 2 tbsp
Poppy seeds 2 tbsp
Grated coconut 2 tbsp
Steps to make the gul polis:
- Chop the jaggery in small pieces, place in a small vessel, and boil it in the pressure cooker.
- Roast the sesame seeds, poppy seeds, and grated coconut in a pan with 1 tsp of oil.
- Use some more oil and roast the besan (chickpea flour).
- Take the jaggery out of the cooker, and mix jaggery and all the other ingredients and keep it aside for some time.
- Let the jaggery mixture cool down.
- Knead some dough, take a rolling pin and make two small rounds. Knead a ball out of the jaggery mixture and place it in between the two small puris.
- Roll and create a small poli out of it. Cutout the sides to remove superfluous flour.
- Roast the polis on both sides on the pan.
- Serve hot with lots of ghee.
Ghee is used in ample amounts so that out body heat is controlled with the excess of the jaggery intake.
Roll the polis on rice flour…they move easily and you can create a nice round poli 🙂
Okay, so it is 6 PM by the time I reach home from office, so I am resembling the angry bird (except that I am a ‘hungry’ bird)!
I picked up maggi from the store and I intended to cook that too…but the devil in me kept yelling at me – ” it’s not healthy, it’s not healthy!”. So I raided my fridge and found cucumbers and tomato and cheese. (FYI, my fridge always has tomatoes and cheese :)), so I made myself a salad 🙂
Here is the recipe, if it takes you more than five minutes to make, I’ll change my name (okay, I am just kidding, no serious business folks)
1. Cut the tomatoes and cucumbers in dices. You may add any veggies you like to eat raw.
2. Make a dressing out of olive oil, salt, pepper and lime juice.
3. Add 3 drops of mustard sauce (I cannot resist the mustardy taste in the silken dressing)
4. Last, add finely chopped coriander and mint to the dressing.
5. Pour on the veggies and relish your heart out on this simple, and tasty snack.
You may also add cheese cubes like I did (only 5 small pieces, I promise!) to complete it 🙂
Oh and here is a picture of my work-from-home desk.
My work-from-home desk
Hummus with Pita and Grilled Veggies
Navratri starts tomorrow. Deven observes a strict fast for the next nine days. By strict, I mean that he survives only on fruits and milk and one light mean a day. This regime continues till 9 days after which he will break his fast on Dusshehra – an Indian festival celebrating victory of good versus evil.
Although I never fast, this period is a period of less eating for me as well. I try to make it a simple fare. This prompted me to celebrate today’s dinner by making something that we are extremely fond of – Hummus. I wanted to make hummus since sooo long but was afraid to try as I have never tried anything so foreign till date. I am not a cook-at-heart. I would rather prefer watching someone else cook and just tasting it :). Yet, here I was…struggling thru the zillion recipes of hummus online to find the easiest one!
So here it is, hummus with pita bread and grilled veggies 🙂
For the Hummus
Chick Peas (Boiled) half a cup
Garlic 2-3 pods
Chopped Parsley/Dried Parsley
Cumin Powder/Chilli Powder
Salt and Pepper
For making Tahini
Sesame Seeds 3tbsp
Salt and Pepper
For grilled Veggies
Tomato, potato and capsicum cut in thick, long strips
Just Like That
To make hummus, first you need to make Tahini. Tahini is sesame paste that is typically used in Greek and middle eastern foods. It is incredibly simple to make and rarely will go wrong!
To make Tahini
- Slightly roast the sesame seeds in a hot pan. Take it out and let it cool.
- In a blender, blend sesame seeds, crushed garlic pods, salt and pepper to make a thin, smooth paste.
- Add a spoon of olive oil and lemon juice and blend again.
- Check the seasoning.
- Add chilli flakes and mix well. Our tahini is ready!
To make hummus
- Boil the chick peas till soft.
- Blend them with garlic and olive oil.
- Sprinkle with cumin powder, add Tahini to the chick pea mixture and mix well.
- Add salt and pepper as required, drizzle with olive oil and serve with pita bread.
To grill vegetables
- Cut tomatoes, potato and capsicum (you may add the red and yellow peppers if you like) in long and thick slits.
- In a bowl, mix the veggies, add olive oil, crushed garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper and keep aside for 10 mins.
- In a very very hot pan, add a dash of olive oil and pour in the veggies + the oil marinade.
- Toss them for just two minutes till they get a grilled look and take them out.
To lay them on a plate
Place the pita bread, grilled veggies and hummus on a plate. You may split a pita, place the veggies and hummus and eat it, like I did 🙂 or just dip the pita in hummus like my husband did! either way, you are gonna love it 🙂
Couldn't resist a bite